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McKenzie River Gives

#GivingTuesday is a global giving movement that has been built by individuals, families, organizations, businesses and communities in all 50 states and in countries around the world. This year, #GivingTuesday falls on November 28. #GivingTuesday harnesses the collective power of a unique blend of partners to transform how people think about, talk about, and participate in the giving season. It inspires people to take collective action to improve their communities, give back in better, smarter ways to the charities and causes they believe in, and help create a better world. #GivingTuesday demonstrates how every act of generosity counts, and that they mean even more when we give together.

The McKenzie Community Development Corporation is organizing an annual community-wide fundraising campaign around #GivingTuesday – McKenzie River Gives, a 24-hour period where citizens give back to the local organizations that work year round for the community.  We as individuals are the major force in giving to our communities. In 2016 of the $390.05 billion contributed to nonprofit organizations in the USA, individuals gave 72% of the total.

Currently, participating groups and organizations in McKenzie River Gives include:

  • McKenzie CDC – Click here to give.
  • O’Brien Memorial Library/Blue River Library
  • Leaburg Library
  • Vida McKenzie Community Center
  • Upper McKenzie Community Center
  • McKenzie River Clinic
  • Womenspace
  • McKenzie Valley Presbyterian Church
  • McKenzie River Community School
  • McKenzie River Regional Leadership Team for 90by30 – Click here to give. To designate your donation to the McKenzie team,  include additional gift instructions for the donation using the form.
  • McKenzie Watershed Council

On November 28, join us at the Leaburg Training Center to donate to these McKenzie organizations! Can’t make it to the event? Consider donating through our local organization’s online platforms (information will be added here as we gather it from organizations).

Contact Ashley Adelman, Executive Director with the McKenzie Community Development Corporation at or 541-854-0210 with any questions.

OregoniansGive: McKenzie Community Giving

OregoniansGive: McKenzie Community Giving

Whether you were born in Oregon or chose the McKenzie River Valley as your home, you make Oregon and the McKenzie River Valley communities what they are today. We as individuals are the major force in giving to our communities. In 2015 of the $373.25 billion contributed to nonprofit organizations in the USA, individuals gave 71% of the total.

Black Friday and Cyber Monday are all about the commercial aspects of the holidays. On November 29, 2016 there is a national day of giving, Giving Tuesday, and we as citizens have an opportunity to celebrate our generosity by giving to the nonprofits organizations that make a difference in our community. In Oregon, Giving Tuesday is known as #OregoniansGive and is a 24 hour period where citizens give back to the nonprofits that work year round for the community. Would you give to our McKenzie River Valley nonprofits that do so much to make our McKenzie River Valley a great place to live?

In 2015, #OregoniansGive raised more than $1.8 million for more than 700 nonprofit organizations. For the 2016 giving campaign, #OregoniansGive plans to raise $3.9 million in donations and engage more than 1,000 nonprofit organizations. This is the first year for the McKenzie River Valley nonprofits to band together and participate in #OregoniansGive so will you look over the list of nonprofits in this article and give back to our rural communities? Your help can make the first year a success! 100% of donations go to the nonprofits participating in #OregoniansGive.

The current list of local nonprofit organizations that are participating in #OregoniansGive 2016 are:

If you have questions about any of the nonprofits above, please use the contact information to get in touch with a representative. On November 29, you can go to to donate to these McKenzie nonprofits!

McKenzie Community Group formed

Because there are no incorpo­rated communities in east Lane County, residents sometimes lack an organization which can advocate for them and can receive grants for community improve­ment projects.

For the past 20 years the Blue River Community Development Corporation (BRCDC) , a non-profit 501c(3) organization, has provided this service for residents of the Blue River area. On May 19th, 2016 the BRCDC Board of Directors voted to expand their area of service. After a unani­mous vote, their purpose now includes “the encouragement, stimulation and promotion of economic and community devel­opment and diversification in the McKenzie River watershed east of the Springfield, Oregon Urban Growth Boundary”. The name of the organization was also changed to the McKenzie Community De­velopment Corporation (MCDC).

The changes were proposed by the McKenzie River Action Team. This is a group of community vol­unteers, many of whom participat­ed in the Ford Institute Leadership Program (FILP) and the Oregon Rural Tourism Studio Project (ORTSP). Over the last year, the Action Team discussed and re­viewed the 1995 McKenzie River Strategic Plan, and conducted a series of pubic meetings. From these the Team developed specific goals which they are proposing the MCDC adopt. These goals are to “enhance coordination and communication between groups, expand volunteerism, maximize partnerships and opportunities for improved health and well-be­ing of residents; enhance the rural character of the community and quality of the environment, fos­ter environmentally sustainable communities and develop their infrastructure (e.g. high-speed internet and improved wastewater management); enable and enhance economic development, expand tourism and recreation.” .

Another change is that the groups will not formally have pay­ing “members”. Activities will be guided by the Board of Directors, and several committees. These committees are open to residents. The group is actively seeking volunteers for the new Board and committees. If you are interested in being on the Board or Com­mittee, or for more information, please contact Ashley Adelman at

Original article published in River Reflections Newspaper 6.2.2016, change in contact information.

Interested in Volunteering?

Interested in Volunteering?

At the recent Chili Cook-Off, a volunteer interest survey was distributed. The survey allows folks a chance to articulate their interests and in turn, match them with volunteer opportunities. If you are interested in volunteering, feel free to fill out this survey and we can support you in finding the right opportunity for your interests! If your organization or group is seeking additional volunteers, contact us at to let us know of the opportunity!

Lane County Transportation System Plan – Last Community Workshop!

Lane County is in the process of updating its Transportation System Plan. Lane County is currently refining and prioritizing the list of solutions alternatives.

The last community workshops will be in Cottage Grove on 6/13. More information on the workshop and the comment form can be found here. The comment form can be mailed in as well. To learn more about the plan update, visit the Lane County TSP website by clicking here. Thank you in advance for helping the County prioritize transportation improvements.

Chili Cook-Off

Join us at a Chili Cook-Off! Following our three community outreach meetings, the McKenzie Action Team invites you to hear ideas shared at recent meetings while we discussing next steps. Enjoy great food, discussion and music!

Chili Cook-Off Flyer

Broadband Meeting in Leaburg

On March 17th, 2016 the McKenzie Action Team hosted a meeting at the Leaburg Training Center to share information from a recent Rural Broadband Conference convened by the Oregon Rural Development Council in Bend during February 2016. At the conference, local residents learned about many opportunities to improve broadband coverage in the McKenzie River Valley. One program already in the early planning stages is through CenturyLink and the Connect America Fund. Final eligible areas can be viewed on this map.

The powerpoint shared at the meeting can be viewed here.

A goal of the meeting was to find community members interested in helping with this effort. While the Connect America program will assist some locations, it will not be a solution for everyone. We intend to hold a meeting in the coming months to get folks together, form a committee and identify additional programs and grants the community would like to pursue. If you are interested in getting involved, please email for further information.

Fire Burn Ban

Waste disposal may be restricted entirely via a disposal ban. The most common and widespread such standard is a prohibition on littering. Where a jurisdiction has authorized a specific place or system for trash collection, deposition or abandonment of trash elsewhere may be subject to civil or criminal penalties

Fire Crews Shorthanded

Fire Crews Shorthanded


LEABURG, Ore. — A fatal wreck on the McKenzie Highway was one of four major calls in McKenzie Fire & Rescue’s District in a five hour time period Thursday.

Crews were pushed to their max figuring out how to cover all the calls as many crews are out fighting wildfires.

Right now there’s only one paid staff member manning the station for McKenzie Fire & Rescue in Leaburg.

It’s the reality for many stations in Western Oregon as many firefighters have been sent to fight wildfires across the state.

But what does it mean for emergencies in town?

It means relying primarily on volunteers to cover the calls.

Crews are ready for anything but on Thusday they got hammered.

“I got a little more tense than I usually get,” said Lt. Jim Ellis, McKenzie Fire & Rescue.

“Yeah I don’t know if crazy is a big enough word but it was definitely a crazy day,” said Firefighter Aaron Shaw, McKenzie Fire & Rescue.

It started around 2 p.m. Thursday afternoon.

A truck drove off the road, hit a tree and caught the tree on fire.

“We saw smoke and there was a bystander that ran across the road and he was in the process of getting the gentleman out of the vehicle,” said Shaw.

Shortly after — a second crash.

And then a third.

“It was hectic, it was chaotic.What was going through my mind was I sure hope things slow down so I can catch a break,” said Firefighter-EMT Matt Brooks, McKenzie Fire & Rescue.

And just when they thought they had a moment to rest — a fourth call — a fire threatening a station in a neighboring district.

They did this all with one paid staff member and several volunteers to handle the influx of calls.

“With staff available, you can pretty much guarantee a response of trained people. With no staff available, you are organizing and getting a hold of volunteers to see if they’re in district,” said Brooks.

There are four paid staff members at McKenzie Fire & Rescue.

Three of them are currently helping with efforts at the Canyon Creek Complex in John Day.

The hope is they return soon to their families, and to relieve some of the stress for crews in district.

We’re told some of the crews will return from John Day Friday night.

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