Award presenters Peter Eberhardt, Stephen Cole, prize recipient David Wagner, trust member Raymond Albano.

News Brights

Good things in the local Lane County area

Longtime Eugene Weekly nature columnist David Wagner received the Oregon Blackberry Award Thursday, Oct. 7 for the way he helps Eugeneans notice and enjoy the changes in our community. Peter Eberhardt invented the Oregon Blackberry Award to recognize people making a difference in the cultures and communities of Oregon. Taking the Nobel Prize as its inspiration, the Blackberry Award is local and presented more frequently. “Awardees are chosen by the Oregon Blackberry Trust,” Eberhardt told EW’s Happening People, “a group of friends committed to progressive social change, good conversations and fun.” EW, KLCC and the NAACP’s Eric Richardson are among the recipients of this inspirational award.

 A Eugene organizer has been hired by the White House to work as a junior climate policy advisor. Haley Case-Scott was working for Beyond Toxics and the NAACP Eugene/Springfield as an organizer, but starting mid-October, she will support Dr. Jane Lubchenco, an Oregon State University distinguished professor appointed by President Joe Biden to serve as the deputy director for climate and the environment, and who previously served as under secretary of commerce and administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in the Obama-Biden administration. Case-Scott is a member of the Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians and a descendant of the Klamath and Yurok tribes and the Sakaogan Band of Chippewa Indians. By serving in the Office of Science and Technology Policy, Case-Scott will help with the White House’s climate and environmental science efforts. 

It’s that time of year, with Halloween and Samhain drawing closer when we like to freak ourselves out, or at the very least ponder the fleeting nature of life and the longevity of spirits, evil or otherwise. So if you like to explore the possibility of the afterlife and ghosts lurking about, check out former EW calendar editor Ken Goodman’s Haunts of Western Oregon, with tales of a haunted elevator at Lane Community College, a haunted catwalk in the South Eugene High School auditorium and, of course, ghosts in local cemeteries. The book is available in most bookstores or through Schiffer Publishing.

Thinking about staying healthy as the holidays approach? The Y has a triathlon for you: the ESCAPE 2021 on-your-own Triathlon. Participants have three months to log progress for an Ironman distance triathlon: 2.5-mile swim, 112-mile bike and 26-mile run. Not a swimmer? Do you walk instead of run? You can make substitutions for each leg. Cost is $20 or $10 for Y members, thanks to sponsors Team Eugene Aquatics and Run Hub Northwest. Head over to for more information.

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