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The Surprising People You Can Meet at a Bed & Breakfast

One of the things we love about owning the Bronze Antler Bed & Breakfast is the opportunity to meet some very interesting people. Our guests come from all over and have such interesting stories to share around the breakfast table. The surprising people you can meet at a bed & breakfast might range from musicians to artists to neighbors you didn’t know lived nearby in your own city, to small business owners, or even someone who might’ve graduated from the same high school as you many years ago.

This week we hosted Brad and Debora Lorang of Lorang Fine Art & Gorge-ous Gifts from Cascade Locks, Oregon. How many times have you driven by the Cascade Locks exit on Interstate 84 going to or from Portland, Oregon, without a stop? I know for us it’s been many times. But now we have reason to stop in after meeting Brad and Debora. And I think the other bed & breakfast guests that had the pleasure of sharing breakfast with Brad and Debora will as well. Their gallery is full of original pieces of art in nine major media collections (metal art, photography, jewelry, sculpture, pottery, mixed media and recycled art, paintings, woodwork and glass art) representing over seventy artists.

Inside view of gallery

Lorang Fine Art and Gorge-ous Gifts in Cascade Locks Oregon

Debora’s focus is photography and Brad concentrates on working with metal. One afternoon he pulled out a tablet and shared images of some of his larger commissioned, custom designed metal installations (made me think of what could we possibly need to add in the Bronze Antler gardens).  Tremendous!

Another aspect, which they shared with other guests around the breakfast table, is how involved they are in the community of Cascade Locks and the surrounding Columbia River Gorge area. Debora makes it a point to promote other Cascade Locks businesses on their Lorang Fine Art website and is very active in representing Cascade Locks with their local Chamber of Commerce. Our Bronze Antler B&B guests who wanted to learn more about waterfalls in the Columbia River Gorge learned some insider information from someone local to that area. Where else can you have a casual conversation over breakfast with someone you’ve just met and learn some tips about a place you’d like to visit?

Even our cat, Madigan, the kinky-tailed greeter of the Bronze Antler Bed & Breakfast, got into the mix. She graced Debora and Brad with her presence in the dining room one evening and even agreed to pose for a photo session and a quick sketch. It was fun watching the transformation before our eyes and Brad deftly captured Madigan’s features in pen on his sketch pad. They were nice enough to leave this quick pen & ink sketch of Madigan and we are sharing it.

Portrait Sketch of Madigan our long haired tabby housecat

Pen Sketch of Madigan by Brad Lorang

The next time you’re contemplating where to stay on your vacation, you might consider a bed and breakfast lodging in your options. The surprising people you can meet could become new friends, or at least interesting acquaintances for a shared meal in a lovely appointed dining room. It’s an opportunity to connect, learn a little something about someone else, perhaps share a little something about yourself, or just be quiet and listen to the other guests around the table. It’s a more intimate experience than dining in a restaurant or even in the breakfast bar of a chain hotel or motel. Take the opportunity and join in!

Get Your Local Wallowa Valley Fix Here

Want more local Wallowa County at your fingertips? Ready to plunge in and know what us folks out here in Eastern Oregon know? There’s a new blog here in Wallowa County, Oregon, that regularly accumulates posts from some of the best and brightest blogs written about this corner of Northeastern Oregon. You’ll find it as “Oregon’s Wallowa Valley” and it aggregates blog posts from some local websites you’ll want to explore:

  • Bronze Antler Bed & Breakfast (in Joseph, Oregon, writing about activities, events, and the bed & breakfast, of course)
  • Josephy Center for Arts & Culture (in Joseph, Oregon, and home to a variety of arts classes, exhibitions, events, and the Alvin & Betty Josephy Library
  • Winding Waters River Expeditions (based in Joseph, Oregon, with fly fishing trips, specialty rafting trips, guided fly fishing and more)
  • Plus the added bonus of plenty of fresh content about local places to discover like the M. Crow & Company Store in Lostine, Oregon, or what’s going on in the local music scene from the Wallowa Valley Music Alliance

The blog is sponsored by the Wallowa County Chamber of Commerce and maintained by Janis Carper at Second Chance Productions (another Wallowa County based person that you’ll come to know if you spend any amount of time researching this place).

Subscribe to this feed, bookmark this place, or drop in from time to time to find out what’s new!

Fishtrap Fireside Is the Friday Night Number One To Do in Fall & Winter in Joseph Oregon

So it’s a chilly second Friday night of the month in Joseph Oregon, sometime between October and April, and what’s a body to do? If you’re a guest at the Bronze Antler Bed & Breakfast, we’ll suggest a short 10-minute drive to Enterprise for a low-key literary arts program. Fishtrap Fireside is an opportunity for three local writers to read and share their new work, plus an “open mic” period for anyone attending to read and share for their five minutes of local fame.

For a $5 donation at the door, you can shed that big-city Portland, Oregon, persona and immerse yourself in one of the more popular indoor wintertime activities that we Wallowa County locals enjoy. The setting is the living room of the Fishtrap House, a converted home that houses this literary nonprofit group. The atmosphere is warm, non-judgmental, supportive. The aroma is spiced from the light refreshments and the crackling wood fire.

The 2015-2016 Fishtrap Fireside season is posted at the Fishtrap website and updated regularly as more writers are identified. All events at the Fishtrap House, 400 E Grant Street, Enterprise, Oregon. Or contact Mike Midlo, Program Director at Fishtrap, 541-426-3623 or mike@fishtrap.org.

Become the local you’ve dreamed of becoming in this very remote part of Oregon. Enjoy!

Fishtrap-Fireside-Poster2015-Oct9-01

Summer Things To Do List No 1 in Joseph Oregon

Dennis and Janice Gillies enjoying a trip on the Joseph Railriders. All Aboard!

Dennis and Janice Gillies enjoying a trip on the Joseph Railriders. All Aboard!

 

Summer 2015 is upon us and the Joseph Branch Railriders is having a great season. This is one of the newest activities to do in Joseph, Oregon–ride the rails of the Joseph Branch between the towns of Joseph and Enterprise on specially made railrider vehicles. They’re kind of like side-by-side recumbent bicycles. Our guests Dennis and Janice took the 12-mile round trip ride on a railrider on a Saturday morning and came back beaming from the trip. They’re very active people and brought their kayaks to town for a spin around Wallowa Lake, but also wanted to be sure and ride the Railriders while they were visiting Joseph and Wallowa County. They reported that the route to Enterprise was really easy and they could coast a good part of the way (it is slightly downhill). The trip back from Enterprise to Joseph was a slight bit of a challenge (average 1.5% grade), but their railrider guide was there with a powered railrider vehicle to give them a push back into Joseph if they needed it.

For summer 2015, the Joseph Branch Railriders are open for tours Fridays through Mondays. You can walk up to their office at 304 North Main Street here in Joseph, Oregon, to make an appointment (just next to Red Horse Coffee Traders), or call in advance to make reservation arrangements. The tours start a 9 a.m., noon, and 3 p.m. The phone is 541-910-0089 or 541-910-0891. You can bring your own bike helmets like Dennis and Janice did, or the office will supply you with some.

A photo from Dennis and Janice Gillies on the Joseph Railrider June 2015. The path leads through farmland and pastures of Wallowa County.

A photo from Dennis and Janice Gillies on the Joseph Railrider June 2015. The path leads through farmland and pastures of Wallowa County.

 

Janice commented over breakfast that a trip on the Joseph Branch Railriders was one of the best attractions she’s done for $20 per person.

On the Railrider website and on the Bicycling and Motorcycling page of the Bronze Antler B&B website you’ll find the Oregon Field Guide video about the Joseph Branch Railriders. It definitely looks like a lot of fun and we’ve had guests in varying degrees of fitness enjoy a trip on the rails.

If you’re wanting more of an all-day adventure, for 2015 the Joseph Branch Railriders is introducing an all-day trip from Minam (the place where Oregon Highway 82 crosses the confluence of the Minam River and Wallowa River) up to the town of Wallowa. Riders depart from Minam at 9 a.m. and must return to the same location by 4 p.m.  This journey is size limited to 12 guests and costs $45 per person. Part of the rail line journeys along the Wallowa River, then breaks into the open pastures and fields on the way to town. One of the appealing things about this route is that the ride along the Wallowa River is on the opposite side of the river from the automobile traffic on Highway 82. We’ve yet to have any guests take on this adventure and are looking forward to someone doing so and filling us in on the details at breakfast.

Hope to see you on the Joseph Branch Railriders soon, and thanks to Dennis and Janice for their photographs!