▶️ Measure 114’s live fire training component leaves trainers in limbo

While Oregon’s new voter-approved gun control measure gets worked out on the courts, there remains uncertainty among local gun shops in Central Oregon.

Sharon Preston, owner of Ladies of Lead and an instructor who specializes in self-defense training, says there are a lot of questions that still have not been answered about the implementation of Measure 114.

Preston says business has been through the roof. But she says she’s had to stop firearm sales, not knowing what is next with the measure.  But she says selling guns is only part of what she does.

“Selling guns is a very small portion of my business. I do it as an added value to my clients, so it’s educational based gun sales. But my main focus is always gonna be in training,” said Preston.

RELATED: Oregon Supreme Court denies state motion; Measure 114 won’t begin Thursday

RELATED: ‘Not the end’: Redmond gun parts manufacturer reacts to Measure 114 rulings

 

She’s been forced to find alternatives as 114 is in limbo.

“I’ve heard too many stories in this store from women, locally. The brutality and violence they have been through, survived through. They want a tool that will allow them to live their lives large again, and they’re not gonna be able to get on. That’s why I’m switching to crossbows, pepper ball guns, tasers, knives,” Preston said.

 

Preston’s biggest concern with the measure lies in the required live fire training — meant to prove shooting proficiency. As of now, she says no guidelines have been spelled out as to how the state will facilitate the training courses. And no one knows who will be authroized by the state to lead those courses.

And there are other unanswered questions.

“They don’t know how many rounds we have to shoot, at what distance we have to shoot, at what target we have to shoot. They don’t know what firearm we can use. So there’s so many questions out there,” said Preston.

 

The next hearing on Measure 114 will be held Tuesday at Circuit Court in Harney County. Those who support the measure will be able to argue against the temporary hold set in place by Judge Robert Raschio.

 

▶️ Heavy mountain snow and lingering showers through the weekend

Snow is moving through Central Oregon with some wintry mix in lower elevations. This cold front will bring accumulation to many of us with heavy mountain snow with lingering showers through this weekend. 

Across the tri-county area, rain and snow showers will transition fully to snow with some accumulations expected through Friday night. Highs across Central Oregon were near or below normal.

Friday’s cold front is the second of back-to-back systems. Heavy mountain snow is expected to continue with some accumulation in our lower elevations. Others will not see much at all in the way of snow totals.

Friday night and into Saturday, winds will be gusty with blowing and drifting snow possible. This cold front will stall out over the region and redevelop during the next couple days.

RELATED: Yes, someone was pulled over for driving with snow on their windshield

RELATED: Snowplow operator shortage means more difficult winter driving conditions

 

The National Weather Service has issued a series of winter weather alerts for this system. There is a Winter Storm Warning until 4 p.m. Saturday for the east slopes of the Cascades. In this area, snow totals of 6-12 inches are expected above 4,500 feet with up to four inches in lower elevations.

There is a Winter Weather Advisory until 4:00 p.m. Saturday for the eastern half of our tri-county area. In this area, snow totals of 4-6 inches are expected with a light glaze of ice possible.

 

 

Throughout Central Oregon, gusty winds are expected and could reach to 45 mph or more.

As this cold front begins to break apart, redevelopment is expected. A “spin off low” will form over the coastline and move south. Meanwhile, a secondary, weaker cold front will develop and also move south, through our tri-county area on Sunday.

By Monday, this entire event will be wrapping up with a few more snow showers and in/out clouds.

Through the next seven days, roller coaster temperatures are expected through the weekend with 30s and 40s. Saturday will be the warmest day out of the next seven as temperatures climb to near normal for this time of the year with rain/snow showers. Sunday and Monday will bring progressively colder temperatures.

A weaker cold front will move through our region Tuesday night and Wednesday. This will bring some snow showers and much colder temperatures in its wake.

▶️’Lava Show’ gives you front row seat to rivers of lava without fear of injury

Watching a volcano erupt is a bucket list item for some people. Now there’s a way to get a front-row seat to rivers of boiling lava without the risk of getting hurt.

The new tourist attraction in Iceland, known as the land of fire and ice, is called “The Lava Show.”

“It’s real lava, actually real live lava!” Eleanor shouted. She came all the way from Colorado with her family to see the show.

RELATED: Mauna Loa lava no longer imminent threat to Hawaii highway

RELATED: Viewers flock to watch glowing lava ooze from Hawaii volcano

As she put on protective glasses, she added, “And it’s so hot, you have to wear these glasses when they pour it down the spout!”

Furnaces remelt lava from one of Iceland’s volcanoes that blew more than one hundred years ago, sending red-hot molten lava down a chute and into a showroom.

“You can probably get much closer to the lava in a situation like this, much more so than you could in a real eruption,” says Iain MacKinnon, one of the hosts for the Lava Show. “You get all the sights and sounds and smells, but of course, because the lava that we’re melting here has already erupted, any toxic gases and stuff have left,” MacKinnon says.

Australian tourist Jasmine Luong was amazed.

“It was really beautiful. I can see why a lot of people would be drawn to it or really attracted by it,” she says.

The spectacular sight was so exciting for Eleanor, she documented the unique adventure on social media. She showed off a piece of volcanic glass she got on her family’s ‘Elementary Explorers’ channel.

Iceland has 32 active volcanoes, the largest number in Europe.

Jefferson County man, 88, killed in house fire

An 88-year-old man was killed in a house fire in Jefferson County, the sheriff’s office announced Friday.

It happened around 8:00 a.m. Tuesday on Lower Bridge Road.

The sheriff’s office said the investigation revealed that homeowner, Glenn Cooper, tried to put out the fire himself before he perished.

It was also determined that there has been past issues with a wood fireplace in the home, which the sheriff’s office said contributed to the cause of the fire.

The fire has been ruled an accident.

RELATED: Volunteer firefighter’s home destroyed by fire while he was hospitalized

 

Get some goodies and meet Santa at Bend PD’s Holiday Drive-Through

The Bend Police Department is hosting its Holiday Drive-Through event Saturday.

You can pick up a goodie bag with gifts from local businesses, grab a hot chocolate and meet Santa.

You can also drive through the Pay It Forward station and drop off some warm clothes or non-perishable food items.

“This event is organized by our detective unit. They don’t always get to be out with the community very often so this is their chance to kind of see kids and give back to the community,” said Bend Police Communications Manager Sheila Miller.

The event is from 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. at the Bend PD building at 555 NE 15th Street, just off Greenwood Avenue and across 15th from Lava Lanes.

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Got an ugly sweater? Bring it to the Downtown Bend pub crawl Friday night

Grab your worst holiday sweater and have the best time in a downtown pub crawl Friday night.

That’s the invitation from the Downtown Bend Business Association and seven different bars and breweries.

They will offer a variety of deals for customers decked out in their ugliest holiday finery.

It’s all about getting out and about and having a little fun on a chilly Friday night.

“The attire is going to be whatever you choose: ugly sweater, cute sweater. We’ve done it where my friends and I have worn onsies a couple years ago because it was so cold, festive hats, fun socks. So whatever you choose. You basically take a picture of yourself and you tag the restaurant you’re in or the bar and the downtown association,” said Melissa Talbot with Deschutes Brewery.

The crawl starts at 5:00 p.m. and and runs as late as you bad sweater people want it to.

Here are the participating businesses and the deals they are offering:

  • Deschutes Brewery: Custom Pub Crawl Cocktail, Eggnog White Russian 
  • Bend Brewing Company; $8 seasonal hot cocktails  
  • Seven Nightclub: $1 off any beverage above $7. $10 off tabs over $77.  
  • The Commons Café & Taproom: Happy hour to anyone wearing a sweater 
  • The Capitol: Specialty cocktails to those in ugly sweater
  • Dogwood Cocktail Cabin: Holiday themed drinks and DJ  
  • The Cellar- Porter Brewing Company: $1 off holiday themed beer, “Justin Time for Christmas Stout”  

▶️ Crook County Library decides future of children’s books with LGBTQ themes

The Crook County Library Board of Trustees held a meeting Thursday night with a focus on books with LGBTQ content in the children’s section. Ultimately, they decided to not make any changes.

Due to growing public pushback, the library board offered two proposals. One was to create a special section for this material. The other was to not make any changes at all.

The board brought in a number of experts to speak on the topic.

“If the conditions are not faced by the end of the period, that library will lose legal public library status with the State of Oregon,” said Buzzy Nielson with the State Library of Oregon.

“Forcing the labeling and creating a separate collection for LGBTQ+ materials would jeopardize and put into question our continued partnership with the Crook County Library,” said Lynne Mlldenstein with the Deschutes County Library.

RELATED: Calls to remove LGBTQ children’s books at Crook County Library increase

 

The public then got its chance to weigh in. Here are some of the comments on both sides of the issue.

“The LGBTQIA+ community did not ask for this separate section. These books are children’s books and they belong with the other books.”

“LGBTQ issues are inherently sexual. It should not be taught to kids who don’t have any ability and do not have any maturity to talk about sexual issues.”

“Supporting a ban, a restriction of books takes you down a path of inequality and not representing all in our community.”

“Having them in a category makes them easier to find for the people who are looking for them. Easier to avoid for people who want to.”

One board member also asked for a show of hands from the dozens of people were in attendance whether they wanted to keep things as they are. It appeared a majority raised their hand in approval, although many did not.

The board voted 4-1 to not make any changes.

▶️ WATCH: Parked Pendleton Police SUV starts chain-reaction crash on icy hill

A parked police SUV on an icy hill in Pendleton started a chain reaction crash of other parked vehicles earlier this week. The incident was caught on video.

It shows the parked SUV sliding backward down the hill.

It then hits a boat.

The boat then hits a pickup truck.

And that truck hits another pickup.

The second truck then slides sideways while the first truck goes sliding into a car.

 

One of the police officers is seen with his hands on his knees, looking down the hill knowing he has no way to stop this.

“The crashes were concentrated in the hills, of course,” Chief Charles Byram told the East Oregonian. “No injuries resulted, just property damage. I guess that’s what we have insurance for. But it’s a lot for us to handle in one day, with our normal workload.”

Oregon State Parks Guided 1st Day Hikes coming January 1

Oregon State Parks announced Friday that Guided First Day Hikes led by rangers and volunteers are set for 20 Oregon State Parks on Jan. 1.

Here is more on it from Oregon State Parks.

Be ready to bundle up with family and friends and join hikes to learn about park history, geology, wildlife and plants at parks around the state from the high desert to the coast. Hikes are free and the $5 day-use parking fee is waived that day for all state parks that require a parking permit and are open.

“A guided hike is great way to kick off 2023 in the outdoors and begin a new tradition or continue a longstanding family tradition,” said Lisa Sumption, director of the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department. “As our centennial year comes to a close, we’re excited to begin the next 100 years of Oregon State Parks and continue to offer year-round recreation.”

RELATED: $5 off Oregon State Parks 2023 parking permit all December long

Visit the Oregon First Day Hikes web page to see the list of parks hosting hikes as well as the start times and meetup locations. Additional hike information is also available including terrain and hike distance via the park links on the web page. A few hikes require registration.

Remember to plan for winter weather, dress in layers, wear sturdy shoes, bring water and carry binoculars for viewing wildlife. 

Share photos of First Day Hikes via Twitter and Instagram by using the hashtag #ORfirstdayhikes or tagging “Oregon State Parks” on Facebook. 

First Day Hikes is a national initiative to welcome the coming year in the outdoors, promote exercise and encourage connecting with nature. The Oregon Parks and Recreation Department has participated since 2012.

▶️ These are the best days to shop for holiday deals, says a pro sales tracker

It’s not too late to grab major deals for holiday gifts.

“There’s actually some days in December where you can actually get better deals than you can on Black Friday,” says Kyle James from Rather-Be-Shopping.

He’s been tracking December sales for nearly two decades and has found there are specific dates throughout the month to find the deepest discounts on certain items.

According to James, on December 10, expect discounts on laptops and toys.

December 12- 15 are good for sales on video games and gaming consoles.

December 14 is “Free Shipping Day.” It’s when many retailers offer to ship your items for free by Christmas Eve. They’ll also often pair that with deals on clothes, shoes, and kitchen items.

RELATED: Postal Service announces ship dates for holiday packages to arrive on time

RELATED: Online holiday shopping scams more sophisticated: What to watch for

James says you can save even more money by searching for coupon codes that can be applied at check-out. “RetailMeNot. they have a really good app. You can actually search for a particular store when you’re checking out and always try to find that coupon to add on top of it,” says James.

James says many stores continue to cut prices right up to Christmas, so waiting could be worth it, but the hottest toys and video games could sell out. “If you find a good deal at a good price, you probably want to snatch it up. If you wait, you might end up having to go on eBay and spend way more than you should,” says James.

Retail experts say there are also deals right after January 1st when stores cut prices to unload inventory. Retailers often offer deep discounts on televisions in late January and early February.