About Town by Joyce Coulson
For the past nine months, I have been posting on our La Grande Main Street blog spotlighting our partners and upcoming events. I now am going to be rambling around La Grande shopping, dining, and talking with people along the way and sharing my experiences on the blog. My first ramble on Saturday June 25th took me to the La Grande Farmer’s Market and then on to the Eastern Oregon Beer Festival.
Last Saturday was really the first day of summer—blue skies, perfect temperature, and a very light breeze. As I headed down to the Farmer’s Market, my spirits were high and I was really impressed. What a perfect setting! Much produce was on offer (I did get my salad fixings), the tamale folks were there, and the craft people were out in force. The banjo duo, Beako (named after a crow’s beak, because crows are creative, intelligent, and work for scratch) was perfection. It was absolutely delightful seeing folks taking in all the Farmer’s Market has to offer and that really started my day off well.
Then onto the Eastern Oregon Beer Festival. This much-anticipated event, put on by LGMSD with the help of sponsors, a group of enthusiastic volunteers, and vendors, definitely lived up to its reputation. Again, it was just wonderful seeing people just enjoying themselves sampling the wares of a stellar group of breweries, accompanied by delicious food proffered by Becky’s Burger Wagon, Dochos, and Taco Feliz with dessert by Kettle Corn ‘N More. Throughout the day, Wicked Mary provided covers of songs with a multigenerational appeal. To close out the day, Wasteland Kings entertained the happy crowd with their singular upbeat repertoire. My favorite part of our Beer Festival though was people watching. I spent most of my day holding down the fort at the LGMSD table, which was the ideal place to observe the crowd. As I sold raffle tickets for the original Nintendo donated by Clank-Tronix, I met some really delightful people who had great memories about the prize that they shared with me. The Taster’s Choice award, voted on by festival attendees, was awarded to 1188 Brewing of John Day. What a great crowd! It’s been a long time since I have seen so many people in one place having a genuinely good time--people from all walks of life and spanning generations. There will be a photo album from both of these fun events posted with the next blog
What a fantastic start to the summer! Next week, I will be visiting two new stores opening in Downtown La Grande—Savage Serpents and Bout Time Boutique.
Founded over 90 years ago by a group of farmers who wanted to insure the property of their friends and neighbors, Country Financial is now a highly rated and financially strong company that offers their clients a variety of ways to protect what is important to them, as well as plan for a financially secure future. Country Financial’s La Grande representative, Paul Swigert, is proud of Country Financial’s reputation and works hard to earn his clients’ trust.
Country Financial offers a wide range of services, ranging from insurance (car, life, home, business, farm and crop) to individual and business retirement, education, and financial planning services. Paul and his employees are passionate about serving their communities. Through Country Financial’s Employee Giving Match and Volunteer Time Off programs, they give back to their communities and make them stronger. Country Financial is also committed to providing financial education to their communities.
Paul joined Country Financial to “fulfill a valuable need in our community.” He states that “it’s a great feeling to help my friends and neighbors achieve their goals.” That has been his mission with Country Financial and, to further that mission, Paul has become the manager of the Baker City Country Financial location.
Over his 16 years with Country Financial, Paul has been looking after the financial needs of his varying communities and clients. His goal is to keep working hard to burnish the reputation of Country Financial and merit his communities’ and client’s trust.
With the dedication and zeal of Paul and his staff, Country Financial is positioned to successfully carry out their mission in La Grande and the region now and into the future.
In 1955, a group of business leaders in Joseph, OR founded the Bank of Wallowa County, which remained relatively unchanged until 1991, when a new ownership group purchased the bank and it became Community Bank. Community Bank has since grown to 7 branches in Eastern Oregon and 3 in Southeastern Washington.
The mission of Community Bank revolves around its dedication to their communities and the desire to provide the highest quality of customer service. This includes creating advancement opportunities for staff members who are willing to commit to ensuring that Community Bank is the premier financial institution in our area.
Community Bank offers a full range of banking services, including personal, real estate and commercial loans, personal checking and savings accounts, IRAs and CDs, and debit and credit cards. The bankers at Community Bank also invest in their communities by supporting local events and nonprofits and by volunteering local events, leading 4H clubs and coaching youth sports.
Looking toward the future, Community Bank’s goals center around continuing to grow and be successful by maintaining its dedication to the communities it serves with a sustained level of professionalism, outstanding customer service, and a commitment to advancement and growth opportunities for its staff members.
With Community Bank’s unflinching commitment to its communities and its staff, it will continue to thrive and grow, contributing to the region far into the future.
Engage the community to create a welcoming and economically diverse downtown rooted in