Barks and Quacks

To the Ed!tor:

Your editorial on the Duck and Dog situation is all in favor of the ducks and therefore the case is half stated from your point of view. As to your solution it would merely mean another law as to whether dogs would be tied up or not; an arbitrary imposition of a mere majority over a large minority.

The mirror pond and the ducks are public property. The interest in these things of beauty is very intense to those owning property along the water front. But the interest decreases, in the same proportion with the distance, to those not on the river. To these latter the interest in dogs and their freedom is intense, and to prove it they pay a dog license. It is quite safe to say that there isn’t one dog out of 50 in these districts who ever gets to the river and molests the ducks. On the other hand it is safe to say that out of 10 dogs whose owners live near the river two of them will be guilty of bothering the ducks. To tie up eight dogs for the sins of two might be reasonable enough but to tie up 49 dogs for the sins of one is going too far.

To those who live near the water ducks are an asset to the scenery but to the majority a duck is something to kill and put in the pot. It is different with dogs. Dogs are one of the family. The parents of children might not be so devoted to the dogs but the children are. A pet dog eats candy and cookies, drinks from the same cup and many times sleeps in the same bed as does the child. You can’t say that for a duck! And to tie up such a dog in marble time is as painful to the child as tying up his kid brother. After all a duck is only a duck but a dog is a dog in anyones’s yard and in the heart of the owner. And I think the city papas will do well to remember this if they would get along with the municipal family.

Yes, I have a solution and if it is put into effect I promise to abide by it just as willingly as I will fight against the present set-up. Here it is: Put a $25 fine on the owner of a dog caught on the river and if he doesn’t pay, kill the dog. Give half or all the fine to someone hired to patrol the mirror pond.

In this way the guilty will pay and at the same time do away with the present tactics of punishing one hundred for the sins of one.

Signed, Geo R. Brick.

barks-and-quacks-5-9-1938

Source: The Bend Bulletin ©1938

Mirror Pond Islands

Bend sportsmen agree that the city has shown real interest in mirror pond wildlife through approval of a dog “tie up” ordinance during the nesting season, but the sportsmen believe that the city should not only provide protection for waterfowl, but should make some effort to improve nesting conditions. This improvement  the sportsmen say, can be obtained if the tule islands just below the Tumalo avenue bridge are elevated a foot or two above the water line.

Over a period of years, various plans for the elevation of the tule islands have been suggested and at least one attempt has been made to erect nesting places on sticks. But the artificial nests apparently did not meet with the favor of the waterfowl.

The sportsmen are approaching the problem on a new angle this year. They suggest that the booms used in the connection with the Forth of July pageants be used to form a temporary bridge to the tules and that rock and dirt be moved over the span. The sportsmen suggest that the city undertake the project. Possibly it can be handle as a small WPA project. Certainly the sportsmen’s suggestion is worthy of consideration.

It is true the Bend’s “tie-up” ordinance will keep Drake park and other river areas fairly free of molesting dogs, but birds nest along the river edge are never safe. Cats certainly play a part in night raids. And it is recalled that only a few years ago a grown youth was found on his way home with 21 duck eggs, which he planned to cook and eat. Island nesting places would provide protection against such molestation.

In past years, swans and ducks have built nests on the available tule islands in the upper mirror pond, but this season, because of the high water, the tule are practically inundated  Consequently  the suggestion of the sportsmen may have merit. Permanent nesting places in the upper mirror pond would be a real asset to a city that is so proud of its river wildlife.

Source: Bend Bulletin ©1938

Keep The Weeds Out

For 10 or more summers preceding that of 1936 the appearance of the Mirror pond was increasingly unlovely. Water weeds, unknown in the first years of the pond created by the power dam, appeared in larger and larger quantity. As the weeds came to the surface they intercepted the bark discharged from the log ponds at the mills and the casual refuse brought down the current until, by the middle or the end of August, instead of a beautiful sheet of water in the heart of the city there was an ugly and disagreeable appearance of weeds and litter.

In the summer of 1936 the water was drawn out of the Mirror pond so that work at the new Newport avenue bridge might be expedited. For nearly two weeks the mud banks and the shoals of the river were exposed, crews worked at cutting down some of the weed beds and property owners along the shore went at the roots of the plants in front of their places. This work, plus–possibly–the effect of the sun on the exposed growth usually covered by water, was effective in eliminating the weeds last summer and none appeared on the surface after the pond was filled again. This summer, also, the river as been virtually free from the disfigurement hitherto objectionable.

While the memory of the weed conditions prior to 1936 is fresh in mind it is well to have a look at the river now and to see what it can be like with the weeds gone. Today it is a beautiful place and attractive alike to the visitor who sees it for the first time and to the resident to whom it is a part of his daily routine. Seeing the river as it now is and remembering how objectionable its appearance can be should lead to the resolve that hereafter it shall be kept clean and clear and, in fact as well as in name, be the Mirror pond.

Source: The Bend Bulletin ©1937

Additional Document: robert-sawyer-phone-directory-1936


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The Celebration 1935

Bend goes about its usual business today with the pleasant feeling that once more it has put on a Fourth of July celebration complete and satisfying in almost every respect. Two days of entertainment and competitive sport came to a climax last night with a river pageant that will be remembered for many weeks to come.

Bend has this feeling, we say but it is to the managers, the committee members, the many other workers, the members of the chorus and of the band, and all who participated in the presentation of the floats that the most thorough satisfaction has come for they did the work. They were the ones who actually did the job in which the whole town takes pride.

It is, of course, the show on the river that gives character and individuality to the whole undertaking and makes of the Bend celebration the unique event that it is. With this successful third pageant there is a felling in everybody’s mind that there will be a fourth next year and so on. All are agreed that it should be an annual event.

The judges of last night’s floats had an extremely difficult task. We cannot quarrel with their decisions but we wish there might have been more awards and some special recognition of the floats that were offered by the groups of foreign born who went to such great pains to show a bit of their homeland.

Source: The Bend Bulletin ©1935