▶️ Santa touches down in Bend’s Old Mill

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…and who better to bring that holiday cheer than Santa himself.

Every Black Friday Santa trades in his sleigh for a helicopter ride to Les Schwab Amphitheater.

Despite the busy season, Santa isn’t going back to the North Pole just yet. Until December 23rd he’ll at Santa Land in the Old Mill, waiting to snap a photo and grant your Christmas wishes.

Santa’s schedule is expected to fill up quickly, so arrive early, and don’t forget to bring that nice list smile.

If you’re trying to catch Santa this weekend, he’ll be at Santa Land from 11AM-5PM in the Old Mill.

▶️ Holiday shopping in full swing in Central Oregon

Holiday shopping was in full swing today for Black Friday.

In Bend’s Cascade Village Shopping Center parking lots were jam-packed and traffic was slowed to a crawl. However, Black Friday at big box stores still faces stiff competition from online retailers.

“I do most of it online. Like, I look at the stuff here and then look it up online, in the store. Most of the time it’s cheaper on line,” said Quenntin Jameson, a shopper visiting from Tacoma, Washington.  “Compared to Washington, it’s pretty chill and relaxed. Nobody’s getting trampled to death”

Over in Redmond it was a different story with shoppers casually strolling through the Holiday Village Market in Centennial Park.

“Even with the cold temperatures we do see a lot of people who are trying to shop local,” said Jenna Fox, a member of the Redmond Chamber of Commerce. “You know it’s easy to get online and shop Amazon but there’s that one-on-one connection with people that a lot of people value and you get to keep shopping from those businesses each year.”

Sandwiched between Black Friday and Cyber Monday is Small Business Saturday, a national movement to keep that holiday spending close to home.

“Shopping local, for every dollar you spend  about 67-cents stays in town and then gets spread around again so there’s a multiplier effect,” said Eric Sande, the Executive Director of the Redmond Chamber of Commerce. “So shopping local keeps money here, it keeps people in business. They are our family and friends. We want to support everybody and make sure this is a good season for everybody.” 

The National Retail Federation, the nation’s largest trade group, predicts holiday sales will rise between 3.8% and 4.2% this year compared to last, driven by a strong job market.

Two Bend-La Pine students ace the ACT

Less than 1 percent of all students who take the ACT come away with a perfect score of 36.

This year, two students from Bend-La Pine Schools’ earned that distinction – Summit High School senior Savannah Kane and Mountain View High School senior Jared Charney Cohen.

“We are excited to celebrate our students’ successes and their dedication to academics,” said Superintendent Shay Mikalson.

Jared Charney Cohen — Mountain View

Jared loves to perform – including singing, dancing and acting. He has performed in local and regional theater productions. Jared also loves learning and diving into new subjects. His goal is to attend a college with a strong performing arts program that supports interdisciplinary studies, ideally in southern California. Jared says he feels lucky to have been able to take advantage of so many opportunities presented to him throughout his time in school – on stage and off.

Savannah Kane – Summit

Savannah enjoys volunteering and has spent time at Healing Reins, the local emergency room and the Humane Society. She plans to pursue a career in the medical field and would like to become a cardiothoracic surgeon. Eventually, she would also like to work as a doctor in a developing country. Savannah says she has a tremendous support system with her friends and feels like her teachers helped support her academically and personally.

The ACT contains four multiple-choice tests—English, mathematics, reading, and science—and an optional writing test. These tests are designed to measure skills that are most important for success in postsecondary education and that are acquired in secondary education. The score range for each of the four multiple-choice tests is 1–36. The Composite score is the average of the four test scores rounded to the nearest whole number.

IS THIS YOUR GOAT? Stuck Goat Rescued in Crooked River Ranch

Authorities are searching for the owner of a goat that was rescued from Crooked River Canyon Tuesday night.

Citizens called Jefferson County Sheriff’s deputies after multiple people tried to rescue the goat that was stuck on a rock ledge near Horny Hallow Trail.

One man made made it down to the ledge and was sitting with the goat while the Crooked River Ranch rope team successfully rescued the animal.

The man was able to climb down on his own.

The male Nubian goat was turned over to the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office.

If you’re missing a goat, contact Deputy Keever at 541-475-2201


Deschutes County to Give Voters a Say on Pot Businesses

After years of discussion regarding marijuana regulations in Deschutes County, commissioners have decided to opt out of allowing future recreational marijuana businesses after this month.

Voters next November will be the ones to decide whether future businesses are allowed to sprout.

Central Oregon Daily’s Anyssa Bohanon was the the meeting today and has the story.



Redmond Hotel Upgrades Anchor Downtown Revitalization Efforts

The Historic Redmond Hotel is coming back to life.

A new rooftop bar, lounge and other renovations are all part of the project – and part of a bigger plan to revitalize downtown Redmond’s economy.

Central Oregon Daily’s Dalton Roth has the view from the top.

Photo by Timothy Park courtesy of the City of Redmond


Body Found in Sunriver Identified as Adult White Male

Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office detectives suspect foul play is involved after finding human remains Sunday about six miles west of Sunriver.

An autopsy performed Tuesday morning identified the body as that of a white man between the ages of 18 and 40.

According to Sgt. William Bailey, deputies were dispatched to Deschutes National Forest land just before noon Sunday after a camper reported finding a possible decomposed body alongside a forest service road near Wake Butte.

Upon arrival, deputies confirmed it was human remains. Bailey told Central Oregon Daily the body was badly decomposed and had been there for “months.”

The Oregon State Police crime lab was called to the scene to help with the investigation and an autopsy is scheduled for Tuesday, Bailey said.

Sheriff’s detectives are working with the state Medical Examiner’s Office to determine the identity and cause of death. No further information was provided by the sheriff’s office.

Crews Work to Contain McKay Butte Fire

Fire officials are still investigating what started a wildfire near McKay Butte, which has now burned more than 190 acres.

Currently the fire isn’t posing much of a threat and nothing is officially closed in that area. However, there are level one evacuation notices in place for McKay, Ogden and Prairie campgrounds, which means campers should be prepared to leave the area quickly. Fire officials are asking that people in that area stay tuned into the radio, social media, and news should anything change.

The fire was spotted from the Lava Butte fire lookout on Sunday around 3 p.m. Firefighters were on the scene within an hour.

According to fire officials firefighters worked through Sunday night to get the fire partially contained. However, by Monday they were still working to achieve full containment. Ground crews are using everything from hand shovels to dozers to create a fire line, and are being assisted from the air by three air tankers and a helicopter.

Remembering Deputy Chris Jones

The Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office and other local law enforcement are remembering one of their own during a celebration of life.

Sheriff’s Deputy Chris Jones was killed in a motorcycle accident on Highway 207, north of Mitchell on Monday but today a procession of law enforcement escorted Jones’ body to the Christian Life Center for the celebration of life that started at 4 p.m.

The procession went from the Sheriffs Office to Empire Avenue, to Brinson, to Butler Market and then on to Hamby Road, before arriving at the Christian Life Center.

Law enforcement from multiple agencies, friends and family gathered to remember and pay their respects to deputy Jones, who leaves behind a wife and two sons.

Source on the Scene: Balloons Over Bend

This week Central Oregon Daily’s Meghan Glova takes to the skies to give us a look at this weekends Balloons Over Bend.

For all the latest arts and cultural listings, pick up the most recent issue of The Source Weekly or go to their website at www.bendsource.com.

And thanks to our “Source on the Scene” sponsor, Indian Head Casino, for giving us the time and resources to show you some of the best events and entertainment that our region has to offer every Friday night on Central Oregon Daily.