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The La Pine Moose Lodge has corrected
their date of their
Community Christmas Dinner
Sunday, December 10
Family and Children: 1:00 – 2:30 PM, Adults 3:00 – 4:00

Every year the La Pine Moose Lodge on Drafter Road presents our Annual Christmas Dinner for our La Pine Community. This year it will be on Dec. 10th. The families will have dinner from 1-2:30 p.m. and the adults will eat from 3-4 p.m. The lodge serves a complete Christmas Dinner including Turkey, Ham, Stuffing, Potatoes and Gravy, Veggies, Rolls, Cranberry Sauce, Salads, Deviled Eggs, Yams, and a wide array of yummy Desserts, all donated by the Lodge and its members. This festivity is free to our community, although donations are graciously accepted to help with expenses.

And of course, every year Santa and Mrs. Santa attend to hand out gifts and candy to all the children. This is an Annual event and one of the many activities of which the La Pine Moose Lodge sponsors and donates to. Others include: Keep Our Children Warm, which donate new clothes, shoes and boots to local schools; Relay for Life, La Pine Dance Academy, Little League, 4-H Club, and other school groups.

The Lodge serves as security at the Frontier Days Parade, we provide an annual Easter Egg Hunt, and a free Halloween Party for all kids. We participate in Adopt-A-Highway, and hold a yearly Dixieland Jazz Festival, open to the public on Labor Day weekend.

Member activities include: Moose Races once a month, weekend music, dancing, karaoke, occasional horseshoes, weekly Texas Hold’em, Sunday breakfasts, Friday and Saturday night dinners, Bingo, darts, watercolor painting, Pizza nights, Taco nights, open mic and jam sessions. We hold a Mother’s Day Breakfast, free to Moose-member Moms and a Father’s Day Breakfast, free to Moose-member Fathers. We have an indoor play room and outside play area for the kids. We have an annual Tailgate party complete with a bon fire and big screen TV on Civil War Game day.

We hold many fundraisers in our efforts to support the greater La Pine Community. The La Pine Moose Lodge is affiliated with and supports “Mooseheart”, a home in Illinois for children who have no family to care for them. They are put through school and given other opportunities they may not otherwise receive. We also support “Moosehaven” which is a huge active retirement community in Florida for elderly Moose members.

We hope to see you for Christmas Dinner, so, please feel free to come by and check out this wonderful event, it’s all free.

If you have questions or need more information, please contact Richard Bord, 541-536-3721.

Mobilizing for an Outage

By Andrea Hine, Contributing Writer

During storms that last several days, Midstate Electric crews will “hit it heavy for 30-40 hours straight,” according to Operations & Engineering Manager Steve Hess.

Sitting alone at his kitchen table through the night, armed with only a telephone and the three-ring binder that listed all customer addresses and phone numbers, the Midstate Electric supervisor answered call after call from power outage victims. It was up to him to interpret the incoming data, dispatch on-duty linemen via company radio, and specify where to start looking for the cause of the widespread distress.

“That’s how it operated,” recalled Steve Hess, a 30-year lineman (and now Midstate’s Operations & Engineering Manager). “In the old days, we would gather at headquarters, and head out in line trucks to the designated area. The crew would then start running the line all the way out – checking pole by pole – to determine how far the outage had spread. We had to look up at the top of every pole (which range from 25 to 90 feet tall) – nothing was skipped.

“Today,” he continued, “all on-call supervisors receive an automated message on their phones that pinpoints exactly where the power is out on the main lines. This occurs before Midstate members even start to phone in. If an outage occurs after business hours, our answering service fields all calls, and notifies the lineman on duty. Depending on the severity of the situation, supervisors also receive notification by email, or by text when a breaker is open.

“Midstate always has multiple people who know what’s taking place,” he emphasized.

To describe the typical scenario during a massive outage – as occurred in December 2015 — Hess uses the analogy of a home electrical panel, which consists of breakers that send power to various parts of the house. If one of them is tripped due to a failure such as a short (or ground fault interruption), power is turned off to that specific location.

“Supervisors see that breakers are open all over the place, and know we need to get down to the shop. As we start looking at the computer map of the Midstate system, it’s obvious that – holy cow — a lot of people are affected!”

As Hess explained, “the next step is to get linemen and supervisors together to bounce off ideas. We come up with a plan and start delegating crews and establishing priorities.

“During storms that last several days, crews will ‘hit it heavy’ for 30-40 hours straight. Then schedules are set that consist, for example, of working 18 hours on and six hours off. We need to allow for rest periods to help sustain safety and productivity.”

Also taken into account is the adverse effect of fog, snow or nightfall on visibility — “making the pace of work two to three times slower,” said Hess. “We still have to check every pole – just as in the past. And the linemen – despite advances in technology – are limited by the fact that only the areas immediately in front of their faces are illuminated by the headlamp on their hardhats.

“Depending on severity of the situation, we may call in employees who typically work outside (such as meter and distribution technicians) to expedite the restoration of service,” Hess elaborated. “This is in addition to the dispatchers whose job is to answer phones during the day, and who are put on rotation if the outage is prolonged. They perform an invaluable function — so we’re not driving blind. It’s a team effort – everyone is ready to pitch in and help.

“I personally know of a lineman at Midstate – whose own home was out of power for four days – who came to work trying to restore electricity to other customers. This example demonstrates the dedication and loyalty we feel.”

“La Pine is a small community,” Hess observed, “and we’re all neighbors. For example, you can see the Midstate bucket truck parked at a nearby home when the employee is on call.

“We always respond and try to take care of our members. That’s our job, and that’s the way it should be.”