Donna Graham – Windermere

Listing and selling real estate for over three decade Donna Graham specializes in residential, homes on acreage, new construction, farm and ranch properties in the mid-Willamette Valley: Dallas, Monmouth, Salem and the surrounding areas.

You can count on her. Over 30 years of experience with insight into marketing trends, using the latest technologies and providing personalized quality serve. She is the realtor that friends recommend to friends because her business has been about building relationships, not just transactions.

She is dedicated to keeping up with technology. Donna gives her clientele the best advantage by staying abreast of real estate education and legal issues. Her greatest goal is a positive outcome in each and every transaction, giving only the best possible service with integrity.

Donna swears that if you visit the heart of the Willamette Valley and you won’t want to leave! Beautiful countryside, rural communities and larger cities await you. Enjoy the convenience of a short drive to the breathtaking Oregon Coast, recreational Mountains, and Metropolitan City of Portland.

Donna Graham has advanced designations as Advanced Buyer Representative (ABR), Certified Residential Specialist (CRS), and Graduate Realtor Institute (GRI). Donna is also a member of The Polk County Association of Realtors, National Association of Realtors, Dallas Area Chamber of Commerce, Willamette Valley Multiple Listing Service (WVMLS), Regional Multiple Listing Service (RMLS). She has worked on or with several committees over the years including Polk County Food Drive, National Association of Realtors, the Dallas Area Chamber of Commerce and West Valley Hospital Foundation.

With all of her experience, education, and involvement in our local community Donna Graham is prepared to help you find your dream home.

“Donna Graham is the best! She represented us in the buying process and we are so glad she did. She is so knowledgeable about Polk County zoning, land use permits, water rights, road access and much more. She made the complicated process of buying rural property easy. Plus she did a great job negotiation a fair price. Donna kept us so well informed at every step of the process. She promptly responded to our calls and emails. She even offered to be with us at closing. We recommend Donna without hesitation and will definitely list with her in the future.”

~Bare Lot Buyer

Dallas School District No. 2

Dallas School District serves a large geographic area of nearly 250 square miles. The population of nearly 20,000 people is evenly divided between the City of Dallas and the unincorporated areas of the District.

The students enrolled in the school system represent nearly half of all students served by Polk County schools. A staff of 169 licensed and 152 classified people work in six schools and one administrative building. The District also sponsors Luckiamute Valley Charter School (formerly Pedee School and Bridgeport Elementary)

The School Board for Dallas School District No. 2 is composed of five members. Boa5rd meetings are held at 6:30 pm on the second and fourth Mondays of the month at the District Office, excluding Christmas break. Parents, students, staff, and patrons of the community are welcome to attend.

They believe the school is one of the major institutions through which our cultural, political and social heritage is transmitted from generation to generation and the means by which the members of our society are prepared intellectually to evaluate and control cultural, political and social changes.

The primary purpose of Dallas School District is to provide opportunities for the full intellectual development of each child. The child has the responsibility to himself and society to purposely pursue the educational opportunities provided him. Dallas School District has a shared responsibility with parents and with other institutions and agencies for the social, physical, and emotional growth and development of the individual child.

The school must assume a major responsibility for developing in children: a spirit of patriotism based on a deep and abiding love of our country; an understanding of the basic principles of American democracy; a commitment to participate as citizens in the decision making processes; and, an understanding of the duties, responsibilities and rights of every citizen.

The school has a responsibility for developing in all children; an understanding of our economic system based on individual initiative, private property right and competition; a respect for the human dignity attained through productive work; a determination to become contributing persons within our economic system; and, an active concern for the conservation and wise use of our natural resources including the protection of our total environment.

The school has a responsibility for developing in all children an awareness of the societal responsibilities to themselves, to other individuals and the local community or to the larger community of state, nation, or world.

It is an obligation to our children, community and country to institute those programs necessary to fulfill the education needs of our children and to provide the facilities, materials, technology, and staff required to do so.

Dallas School District is working hard to shape the future.

Polk County Historical Society

A group met December 18, 1958, to formulate a Polk County Historical Society. Mrs. Clares Powell invited fourteen ladies to her home on January 1, 1959 to explore interest in organizing a society.

Iris Powell was appointed temporary chairman and Emma Henkle was the temporary secretary. On January 21, 1959, a permanent organization was formed. A constitution was adopted and officers elected. Those elected were: Francis B. Haines, President; Mrs. Delwen Reinemer, Vice President; Mrs. Leland Prather, Secretary; Mrs. O.G. Lyday, Treasurer.

In an April 23, 1959, news article, Dr. Haines stated there were ninety-five signed as charter members.

Meanwhile, the Polk County Museum Commission had dreams of sharing their love of all things historical with residents and visitors alike, long before there was any building to call home. When the Commission disbanded in 1989, the Museum Association continued fundraising efforts while reorganizing into a non-profit organization. Until a permanent building could be realized, the Association became temporary tenants in the 1912 Carnegie Library Building provided by the City of Dallas. On February 16, 1991, the Polk County Museum opened for business.

The Museum Association had been collecting treasures, both donated and on loan, for years. These treasures were now available to be seen and shared with the public, no longer hidden in attics, garages and sheds. The artifacts and documents collected reflected the diversity of cultures and people of the Polk County area. Opening ceremonies included talks by local collectors and historians, performances by local musicians and songs sung by Grand Ronde elders to the beating of a skin drum.

Today, the Polk County Historical Society is a public-benefit, non-profit corporation managed by a Board of Directors consisting of the President, the Vice-President, the Secretary, the Treasurer, nine Directors and the immediate Past President. Board members are elected to the Annual Membership Meeting held each January. The volunteer Board of Directors meets monthly to implement the pronouncements comprising the PCHS Mission Statement.

Fourth of July is a day to celebrate not only freedom, but our history. I encourage you to visit the Polk County Historical Society, and remember just what it is our ancestors fought and died for; what soldiers today continue to fight to protect. Thank you to those who have served, and thank you to those that work to preserve our history.

Abbey Roads LIVE!

“One of the world’s premier Beatles cover bands” – US News and World Report

“Unquestionably expert at what they do.” – Indyweek

“I loved the Abbey Road LIVE! Band! They were awesome! I would go see them anywhere I could. If it wasn’t so fun watching them enjoy playing, one could close their eyes and have a great idea of what an Abbey Road tour by the Beatles would have sounded like, just Awesome!”

Since 2002, Abbey Road LIVE! Has been rocking the music of the Beatles at clubs, theaters, festivals, and private events. Initially a tribute to the monumental “Abbey Road” album, the band has expanded its scope to include more than a 100 Beatles tunes, from all ears of the Fab Four’s career. The band specializes in complete, start-to-finish album performances of masterpieces such as “Abbey Road”, “Magical Mystery Tour”, “Rubber Soul”, “Revolver”, and “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Heart’s Club Band”.

Abbey Road LIVE! Is made up of four all-star musicians from the infamous Athens GA music scene that gave the world R.E.M., Widespread Panic, and B-52s. Collectively the band members have recorded and toured regularly with Cosmic Charlie, Charlie Mars, and Fuzzy Sprouts. Individual band members have also collaborated with acts such as Indigo Girls, Juliana Hatfield, Mike house (Widespread Panic), Danielle Howle and Lemonheads.

While the four lads from Athens GA generally perform as a quartet, they have also been known to recruit the “Magical Mystery Horns” and the “Lonely Hearts Strings”, lending authentic accompaniment to the more elaborately orchestrated tunes. The latest addition to the Abbey Road LIVE! Musical arsenal is a real Indian sitar and tablas.

At a typical Abbey Road LIVE! Show, audiences young and old can be found gleefully singing along with every word, many in utter disbelief at getting to hear this monumental music performed live; something that even the Beatles themselves never did, since they stopped touring in 1966.

We hope to see you when they perform at Sounds of Summer this Thursday, July 5th! The music will kick off at 6:30 pm until 8:30 pm, with food vendors and beer garden on site.

Freedomfest 2018

Independence Day 2018, also known as Fourth of July, is a federal holiday observed yearly on July fourth. It is the anniversary of the publication of the declaration of independence of the United States of America from Great Britain in 1776.

The history of Independence Day 2018 dates back to the 18th century and the American Revolution, 1775-17783. In June 1779, representatives of the 13 colonies then fighting in the revolutionary struggle weighed a resolution that would declare independence of the United States from Great Britain. On July 2, the legal separation of the Thirteen Colonies from Great Britain occurred, when the Second Continental Congress voted to approve a resolution of independence that had been proposed by Richard Henry Lee of Virginia. Two days later its delegates adopted the Declaration of Independence, a historic document drafted by Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, and Benjamin Franklin.

Historians have long disputed whether Congress actually signed the Declaration of Independence on July 4 and most have concluded that the Declaration was signed nearly a month after its adoption, on August 2, 1776, and not on July 4 as it is commonly believed. The holiday remains to be celebrated on the fourth of July. Coincidentally, both John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, the only signers of the Declaration of Independence later to serve as Presidents of the United States, died on the same day: July 4, 1826, which was the 50th anniversary of the Declaration.

Dallas will once again be celebrating the Fourth of July in a big way; Freedomfest! We invite you to join us Wednesday for a spectacular day and evening for family fun as we recognize our service men and women with a pickleball tournament, BBQ competition, beer garden, vendors, non-profit hosted games, field games, music, food trucks, bingo, and of course the first-rate fireworks show at dusk. All activities will be held at the Roger Jorden Community Park. Dallas Fire and EMS Department will light off the show from LaCreole Middle School. Citizens are encouraged to grab their chairs, blankets and family for the celebration. Come down early to pick your spot!

International Joke Day

Do you think you’re funny? The best way to get a feel for a country is to try to understand the humor. Laughter is a universally recognized expression of amusement, and joke telling can become a professional gig for those that truly have the humorous touch. International Joke Day on July 2nd, is the perfect day to let out all the guffaw producing, or groan inducing jokes you’ve collected over the years, sharing them with friends or any passerby you can get to listen to you.

International Joke Day seems have officially begun in the United States but whatever the origins of International Joke Day, it is clear that jokes themselves pre-date by hundreds and hundreds of years. The first joke is often attributed to the Greeks, specifically Palamedes, who is also credited with the invention of many other things. An example of ancient Greek joke telling reads thus:

“A barber, a bald man and an absent-minded professor take a journey together. They have to camp overnight, and so decide to take turns watching the luggage. When it’s the barber’s turn, he gets bored, so amuses himself by shaving the head of the professor. When the professor is woken up for his shift, he feels his head, and says “How stupid is that barber? He’s woken up the bald man instead of me.”

Greece also boasts the first comedy club, though its purpose was sharing jokes among friends rather than stand up performances as we have now. Jokes have likely been told since man first looked at himself in a pool of water a passed judgment on his own complexion, so it’s a safe bet that people have been celebrating jokes for a long time.

There are many options for celebrating! You could simply tell some jokes to a co-worker or friend, or a stranger on the street, whoever seems to need the most hilarity in their day. Or invite your friends over for a joke telling party! Take turns telling jokes or reading them out of a joke book or online source.

Another option is to visit a local comedy club and listen to a professional, or wannabe pro, tell jokes for a night of fun! Find out if the club has open mic opportunities and consider sharing some jokes of your own. If going out for a night on the town doesn’t suit your fancy you could pull up some DVD’s of a famous comedian’s standup routine, such as Robin Williams or Jim Carrey or a TV channel may play an hour long standup comedy special featuring well known comedians such as Daniel Tosh

Need some inspiration? Try out these international jokes:

France:

“What would a parrot says that got its leg stuck in a freezer?” “Shiver me timbers.”

“You’re a high-priced lawyer! If I give you 500 dollars, will you answer two questions?” “Absolutely! What’s the second question?”

Belgium:

“Well, you see, there are basically three kinds of people in the world: those who can count ant those that can’t.”

Sweden:

“A guy phones the local hospital and yells, ‘you’ve gotta send help! My wife’s in labor!’ The nurse says, ‘calm down. Is this her first child?’ He replies, ‘No! This is her husband!’”

Canada:

You know you’re from Canada when…

  1. Driving in the winter is better because all the potholes are filled in with snow.
  2. If the local newspaper requires 2 pages for national and international headlines, but requires three for hockey.
  3. If “vacation” means going anywhere south of Detroit for the weekend.
  4. If you’ve had a lengthy telephone conversation with someone who dialed a wrong number.
  5. If you find -40C a “little chilly.”

China:

I was walking down the mall with a friend yesterday when he turned to me and said, “Seeing all those flags on display makes me so proud of my country.”

“But Chan, you’re Chinese,” I replied, “All those flags are British.”

“No they’re not,” he laughed, “just take a look at those labels!”

CASA “Fore” The Kids Golf Tournament

In 1977, Judge David Soukup of Seattle realized that there was no one in the courtroom whose only job was to provide a voice for the child. He was consumed by the fact that very little information was provided about the child and didn’t know if he was doing the best job he could. He believed that volunteers, properly trained, could speak for the children and give judges better insight into the facts pertaining to the child. Through his efforts the first volunteer guardian “ad litem” program was established, which later became known as CASA.

The core components of Judge Soukup’s pilot program are essentially the same today: judges appoint selected, well-trained volunteers to represent the best interests of children in court. CASA volunteers typically handle just one or two cases at a time so they can provide in-depth, first-hand documented information to judges, attorneys, and social workers to assist in sound decision making.

In 1987, the Oregon Legislature mandated that all abused and neglected children in Oregon should have a CASA and two pilot programs were started. This mandate requires the CASA to investigate, advocate, facilitate and negotiate, and monitor.

Through volunteers, CASA of Polk County advocates for abused and neglected children who need safe and permanent homes. CASA volunteers are a caring and consistent adult presence for abused and neglected children facing multiple challenges, a CASA volunteer may be the one constant adult presence in their lives. Advocates stay with each case until it is closed and the child is placed in a safe, permanent home.

CASA programs use effective evidence-based practices to help support these children. Independent studies have established that a child with a CASA volunteer is more likely to find a safe and permanent home; more likely to be adopted; half as likely to re-enter foster care; and substantially less likely to spend time in long-term foster care than children without a CASA volunteer.

CASA is preparing for their 3rd Annual CASA of Polk County Golf Tournament “Fore” Kids. All proceeds for the event will go to the children that CASA works with. It will take place at Cross Creek Golf Course on Saturday, June 30th. Putting contests will start at 7 am, and tee time will kick off at 8 am. We hope that even if you don’t play you will come down to support the event, the players, and the kids.

Country Financial

Heather Spike joined Country Financial to fulfill a valuable need in our community. It’s a great feeling for her to help her friends and neighbors achieve their goals!

Many people dream about how their lives will change in the years to com. Even though no one has a crystal ball to predict the future there are some things that are a real possibility, especially if you have a family – like weddings, college, and eventually retirement. Being prepared for these things can make a big difference, and protecting what you have today is important, too. Meet with Heather to talk about your present needs and future plans!

Our community is a great place to live, work and grow. Heather is proud to be a part of this area, and believes that by working to help her friends and neighbors reach their goals, we can make this community even stronger.

By helping you take simple steps Dallas and you will grow. Even the biggest goals start with simple steps. We know life is busy. So before another moment goes by, Heather wants to help you plan for your future so you can spend less time worrying and more time making memories. Sometimes, when you have more questions than answers, it might seem easier to do nothing at all. Whether you’re protecting the things you love or preparing for tomorrow, don’t get overwhelmed, get started.

Country Financial was founded over 90 years ago by a group of farmers who wanted to insure the property of their friends and neighbors. Today, they are a highly-rated, financially strong company that offers much more than just insurance. They offer their customers a variety of ways to protect what is most important to them and plan for a financially secure future.

Country Financial is proud of their reputation and work hard to earn your trust. Country Life Insurance Company are consistently rated A+ by A.M. Best, and independent industry rating company. Both companies have remained in the highest rating category for almost 80 consecutive years. A.M. Best rates their financial strength and their ability to meet customer obligations.

Country Financial has also been continuously ranked on the Fortune 1000 list since 2004. Fortune magazine maintains the list, which recognizes the 1,000 largest American companies according to revenue. In 2016, the Country Financial family of affiliated companies ranked 646 on the list with $3.5 billion in revenue.

With such a reputation Heather works hard to ensure that her community is getting the best out of their service. Come in today to see what Country Financial can do for you!

National Chocolate Pudding Day

Rich, flavorful, and decadent, there’s nothing in life quite as good as chocolate pudding. While puddings of every type have a long and decadent history, it’s chocolate that’s the modern favorite. Its creamy texture is without a doubt one of the most amazing things about it, but there’s a secret in the pudding that not everyone knows. Worry not though, we’ll be letting you in on it when we talk about the history of puddings and, of course, Chocolate Pudding Day.

The history of puddings starts far back in the 17th century, when the first recipes for puddings appears. Back then puddings were made much different than the classically thought of pudding is today, and to make it clear we’re talking about dessert puddings not savory puddings, which are another topic entirely. Common ingredients were butter and flour, suet, cereals, and other ingredients which when they came together served to create more of a cake like result than the puddings we think of today. It’s also worth mentioning that they baked, steamed, even boiled into their final form.

Originally it was egg that provided the thickening agent that made a pudding into a type of custard, but the invention of a stable powder-form of egg-free custard mix really helped to bring the dessert pudding into the modern day. Chocolate pudding is the type known as a creamy pudding, and is typically made of a combination of sugar, milk, and a thickening agent of one of a broad range of things. Sometimes a gelatin was used, tapioca and cornstarch are popular, or even rice puddings.

The majority of puddings are served cold, though a few are prepared warm. Rice puddings are particularly popular as a warm served treat, and chocolate puddings are one of the few that can get away with being served warm or cold. Chocolate Pudding Day celebrates this divers and delicious treat!

So to celebrate Chocolate Pudding Day start off with getting yourself a great big bowl of delicious chocolate pudding and go to town. If you’re feeling particularly adventurous you can even try making your own, which opens up a broad range of possibilities. A milk chocolate may be a classic type of pudding, but you can also mix it up with a dark chocolate, a white chocolate, even a mint chocolate! Then you can top it off with a swirl of caramel or event sprinkle it with rainbow sprinkles. Chocolate Pudding Day celebrates this amazing treat and offers you the opportunity to eat your fill with no guilt, top it with whipped cream!

New Member

Dallas Chamber of Commerce and Visitors center is pleased to welcome a new member; Pfaff-Karren Insurance!

Pfaff-Karren Insurance is a leading insurance agency in the greater Polk County area. Since 1947, they have been serving their clients and meeting their individual needs. They look forward to working with you!

In 1947, John Pfaff opened John Pfaff & Co in downtown Independence. John had a reputation for his commitment and amazing person service that he gave his clients and friends. As the agency grew, he took a partner: Thomas Karen. In the mid-1970’s, John’s son Tom joined the agency. John would retire in 1978, and Tom Pfaff and Tom Karren formed the newly named Pfaff-Karren Insurance. The agency moved into the brand new Central Plaza in Independence in 1980, where it is still located today. Tom and his family are legendary supporters of both our community and Central High School sports. After 40 years in the insurance agency, Tom Pfaff decided to start his retirement process and sold the agency to Karen Frascone and Kristin Thomas.

Kristin was raised in Polk County, graduating from Dallas High School. Before entering the insurance industry, Kristin worked for the State of Oregon. She became licensed in Life & Health and Property & Casualty in 2009, purchasing TNT Insurance Services in 2014. She moved to Pfaff-Karren Insurance in June of 2016 with her assistant, Alondra Hernandez. The next year, she purchased Pfaff-Karren Insurance with her partner, Karen Frascone.

Karen grew up on a dairy farm in Wisconsin. Both she and her husband Joe graduated from the University of Wisconsin, then spent a year hitchhiking through Europe. They came to Oregon in 1979, and settled in Dallas. She worked for the law firm if Shetterly, Irick, and Shetterly in Dallas until 1998, and became a licensed life and health insurance agent in 2000. She joined Pfaff-Karren Insurance in the fall of 2010.

They pride themselves on having many 3rd, and 4th generation clients, which speaks volumes to the continued commitment and personal service John Pfaff believed in.

We encourage you to stop in and say hello. As always, their coffee is on and their door is open.