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WNHS Mural 04 (copy)

Willamette Neighborhood Housing Services celebrated National Night Out and the completion of the first mural in south Corvallis on Tuesday night.

• ROSE (roz) n. One of the most beautiful of all flowers, a symbol of fragrance and loveliness. Often given as a sign of appreciation.

• RASPBERRY (raz’ber’e) n. A sharp, scornful comment, criticism or rebuke; a derisive, splatting noise, often called the Bronx cheer.

We hereby deliver:

• ROSES to a break in the mid-valley's heat wave: The heat advisory that the National Weather Service slapped on the mid-valley was due to expire at 11 p.m. Thursday, and weekend temperatures were expected to retreat from the 90s, at least through Sunday. In fact, forecasters say, the high Saturday will be around 79, with a chance of morning showers.

It's good news, but it comes with two asterisks: First, there is some worry that the cooler weather could bring with it some lightning storms, and that has the potential to add another wrinkle to what already has been a difficult fire season. And, second, a look at next week's forecasts shows another verse of what has become a tiresome song: High temperatures are expected to return to the 90s (at least, the lower 90s) for Monday and Tuesday. 

Speaking of the weather:

• RASPBERRIES (but only because the berries have proven health benefits) to former Oregon State University football player Seth Collins, who has transferred to Texas Tech. We wish Collins well as a Red Raider, but we had to raise our eyebrows at a recent report in the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal in which he blamed the weather in Corvallis for the health problems he suffered at OSU.

During his three years at OSU, Collins was sidelined by mononucleosis, bacterial meningitis and a broken finger. Normally after transferring to another school, Collins would have had to sit out a year, but won a health-related waiver allowing him to play this season. One of the key arguments in his case for the waiver was that Corvallis' weather was bad for his health.

"The environment, the weather, the temperature — all that in Corvallis, Oregon — it wasn't good for my immune system and all that, so health-wise it wasn't good for me to be there," he told the newspaper.

Well, there's little doubt that the climate in Lubbock is different than the climate in Corvallis. Here's hoping Collins finds Lubbock's warmer and drier conditions more to his liking.

• ROSES to members of the Marys River Grange, who have gone old school in their efforts to raise enough money to put a new roof on the 83-year-old structure. Back in 1935, members of the Philomath grange went from business to business, drumming up support for a new building. Then, as now, the community came through: These days, contributions from businesses have left the organization just $5,000 shy of the cost of the new roof — and grange officials are hoping a Saturday fundraiser, from 10 a.m. to noon at the grange, will cut into that shortfall.

The event, dubbed the "Amazing Grange Day," will take place at the grange, 24707 Grange Hall Road. The Marys River Grange, by the way, is a going concern these days; with 67 members, it's the sixth-largest in the state.

• ROSES to Willamette Neighborhood Housing Services, and everyone else involved in bringing a touch of color to a National Night Out event in South Corvallis this week.

At Tuesday's event, artists Diana Ryan and Dana Monroe unveiled their landscape mural on an exterior wall of the South Corvallis Townhouses, which are owned by Willamette Neighborhood Housing Services. (As a finishing touch, children who live in the townhouses and other residents got the chance to paint flowers on the mural.)

Traditionally, these National Night Out events offer opportunities for neighborhoods to rally against crime. That happened as well at Tuesday's event, but the mural and a variety of additional activities, for adults and kids alike, ensured a delightful night out.  

It's worth noting that some of the money to pay for the mural came from a city of Corvallis Neighborhood Empowerment Grant. These grants, typically of a few hundred dollars each, go to neighborhood groups that are working on projects to improve livability. These are projects where that relatively small amount of money makes a real difference.

The city is in its second year of handing out these grants, and we've been fans of the program from the start. Our sense is that these relatively small investments are paying off big for Corvallis neighborhoods. (mm)

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Managing Editor