Tuesday, November 30, 2010

A Corbett kid from Day 2 on!

Alex Hendricks is currently a Junior at Corbett High School, and his country roots go back to the very beginning. On February 24, 1994 Alex was born in Eugene, Oregon. Just two days later, Alex was brought to Corbett by his parents, Darrell and Gerri Hendricks. Alex was adopted through Holt International Adoption and has been greatly loved ever since. Alex says that he loves living on the woodsy family acreage in Corbett while still being just a short drive from the big city of Portland. Alex sees no reason for Corbett to ever grow larger commercially with restaurants or shopping locations. Many of the favorite memories Alex has relate to Scouting in Corbett. Since first grade, he has been actively involved with Troop #272. The local troop is known for it's high adventure camping, hiking and outdoor expeditions. Only 2% of Scouts in the world ever achieve the rank of Eagle Scout, and Alex is on board to receive this high honor next fall. One of the favorite activities that comes to mind for Alex is being in the Corbett band. Playing the clarinet since 5th grade, he has always loved playing in the many concerts and going on the different field trips over the years. Currently, Alex has sharpened his skills with operating sound for a variety of local clubs and groups that call on his skills. With his kind heart and friendly smile, he fits in well with our Corbett community!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Hanging out at the Grange

Melvin D. Christensen began with real estate early on. When Mel was just two years old, he was gifted five acres on Christensen Road by his grandfather. One of five children, Mel moved from Condon, Oregon with his family in 1934 when he was just a toddler. Times were tough, so the family eventually ended up living in a garage they built on the deeded Corbett property. In 1940 the family moved to Gresham, where Mel graduated from high school. After being in the Naval Reserves his last year of high school, Mel then entered the Navy where he served five years. Coming back to an apartment in Gresham and working for Tektronix nearly 30 years, Mel wanted to get back to his "roots." In 1988, Mel purchased a manufactured home and put it on the land his grandfather had given him 54 years earlier! Each year Mel raises a full garden and gives much of the produce to the seniors in the Corbett community. He raises both vegetables and flowers and loves to try different varieties. The flowers that he grows are the favorite part of his property. This year Mel retired from 15 years of service as a Corbett volunteer firefighter at RFPD #14. Each morning of the week, Corbett Market is where Mel and friends share a cup of coffee. One of the few seniors who are "tech savvy," Mel does a great deal of volunteer work for both the Corbett Grange as well as the Historic Society. He can also be seen hanging out at the Grange on Mondays for lunch with the other seniors. As long as Mel continues to stay as involved and active as he has, we will have many more years to enjoy his company!
Thanksgiving dinner at the Corbett Grange

Monday, November 22, 2010

The Founding Mother of Corbett's July 4th Celebration

The year was 1959. Bob and Nev Scott were helping Bob's brother and wife move into their new home on Trout Creek Road. Passing by the filling station in Springdale each trip they made out to Corbett, they talked about how great it would be to OWN that little filling station. The next time they drove out to Corbett, Nev told Bob to stop and ask if the owners would ever consider selling. "Yes." "When?" "NOW."  Lee and Florence Neidert were the current owners of the 1927 station and attached 3 bedroom apartment, and they were ready to sell the place. Nev and Bob, with their 3 kids moved into the apartment, selling gas at 29 cents a gallon. Bob ran a shop out of the building and several years later when they applied for a permit to upgrade and restore the "tired" station, Multnomah Co. denied the request. Bob was able to get a permit to build a new shop though, and that is what is now the Springdale Fire Station. Nev said that in looking back, owning and running the filling station was the BEST 17 years of her life. In 1970, Nev and Bob moved into the home across the road, which is where Nev currently resides. The home is over 100 years old, and her grandson Eric recently remodeled her entire kitchen, her favorite room in the house. Nev told Eric, "Do whatever you like for the remodel, I just want one red wall!"  Nev's favorite Corbett event is the one she "accidentally" started nearly 40 years ago when her daughter was nine years old and a part of a 4-H horse club. The group wanted to have a parade for their horses, so they planned a Halloween parade. What she thought was a one time event turned into the mega celebration we are all now able to enjoy. Nev said her biggest "gift" came when Big Bear offered to "take over!" Favorite memories for Nev include time spent with her dear friend and neighbor, Jane VanBerkhout. Jane told Nev early on, "If you want something done, don't complain, just do it yourself!" That is what Nev has been doing the last 51 years here in Corbett.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Just another Smith?!

When I first moved to Corbett 14 years ago, everyone asked me if I was one of  "THE" Smith's? I had no idea just what that meant. Well, now I realize that the Smith name in Corbett is as well known as the Mershon's, Baker's or Evan's. One of the "Founding Families" around these parts! Jeff Smith was born in a Gresham hospital and once he came home, has never left. Literally. Except for vacations, he told me that he has never lived anywhere else, ever. Married 26 years now to his childhood sweetheart, Cindy and Jeff have 3 kids and they all live up on Loudon Road on acreage. One of Jeff's favorite things about the home that he designed and built is the western view they are able to enjoy. Many a beautiful sunset has been seen from their strategically placed windows. Asked about a favorite Corbett memory, Jeff spoke to me about not having any power for 3 weeks straight. In the winter of 1968-69, there was a huge snow storm and school was cancelled for 3 weeks, with snow drifts as high as 15 feet in areas. His mom used the wood furnace to cook up some baked potatoes to feed the family. On the flip side, Jeff tells me his favorite Corbett event is the July 4th celebration with the warm sunshine and everyone gathering at the school. On a personal note, I have found Jeff to be the very BEST resource whenever I have a Corbett LAND issue/question. As a logger, he knows this area like NO other. Currently Jeff is coaching the Varsity boy's basketball team. Go Cardinals!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Owners of Big Bear's Market

Balwant and Navkiran Bhullar are best known around Corbett as "Bullet" and "Karen." The newest owners got behind the counter of Big Bear's Market on October 31, 2009. Their best Halloween ever! Both came to the U.S. from India after being part of an arranged marriage when Bullet was 26 and Karen, 21. The couple said they were quite happy with how things have turned out and their two children would certainly agree! Driving through Corbett on their way to Multnomah Falls as well as hearing Corbett folks talk about their community when they purchased gas at their Fairview gas station is what made the couple "dream" of one day owning the Market. Dreams really DO come true! Bullet and Karen LOVE the "family" they have in Corbett and think both the July 4th celebration as well as the Kindergarten Pumpkin Patch Day are their favorite local events. Karen's favorite thing about their Market is the fact there is a deli. Taco Thursdays have proven to be quite a hit in the community and Karen loves NOT having to cook dinner each night! Welcome our newest owners as they try to cater to the community's needs and wants. Bullet said there is talk of a possible Slurpee machine next summer!
Market hours are: M-F 7am-10 pm and Sat. /Sun. 8am-10 pm. #503-695-2255. Deli hours are: M-W 7am-8pm, Th-F 7am-9pm, Sat. 8 am-8 pm and Sun. 8 am-3pm. #503-695-6255.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Getting Started!

What a whirlwind of activity we have going on in Corbett these days. No longer just a sleepy little community east of Troutdale, Corbett is proving itself to be quite vibrant on many levels! Corbett has made a name for itself with our incredible school system, but there is "Oh, SO much more!" Having volunteered the last 14 years, I have met NUMEROUS people who I plan to interview. I always wanted to be an author, but I believe this to be the next best choice. This week I am going to interview both Bullet and Karen, the newest owners of Big Bear's Market. WHO exactly are they, and what brought them to Corbett??????