This is the fourth in a four-part series of articles reviewing news that occurred in 2022. This fourth installment breaks down the period of Oct. 1 to Dec. 31.

The Philomath Fire & Rescue Open House and Strengthening Rural Families Health Fair on Oct. 15, 2022. (Photo by Brad Fuqua/Philomath News)

2022 Year in Review — News: July to September

This is the third in a four-part series of articles reviewing news that occurred in 2022. This third installment breaks down the period of July 1 to September 30. JULY • July 2 — Dirt Road Brewing brought back its street party for a second year to begin the Fourth of July weekend. • July…


• Oct. 4 — The city reached a notable milestone with a groundbreaking ceremony for the Downtown Safety and Streetscape Improvement Project. Randy Kugler, who was the city manager during the controversial couplet project 15 years earlier, was among those in attendance.

• Oct. 5 — The Philomath School District announced a plan on how to use just under $205,000 in funding out of a state grant that requires it be used for staff recruitment and retention purposes.

• Oct. 7 — The College United Methodist Church’s popular omelet dinners returned after the program had been suspended during the pandemic.

• Oct. 7 — Philomath students have options when it comes to learning, growing and transitioning into life beyond high school, including in career and technical education

• Oct. 8 — Lilly’s Lope for Hope, a youth suicide awareness event in memory of Lilly Stagner, was held under the guidance of Paula May for the final time.

• Oct. 8-9 — Marys River Grange hosted Harvest Fest, an event reminiscent of earlier years when grange halls served as a gathering place and community center for farmers and ranchers.

• Oct. 10 — Sustainable forest management earned local landowner Ed Easterling a noteworthy honor as the American Tree Farm System’s 2022 Western Regional Outstanding Tree Farmer of the Year.

• Oct. 10 — A ruptured gas line at the College United Methodist Church led to the evacuation of young children to the nearby fire station.

• Oct. 10 — Just a week after a cordial gathering for a ceremonial groundbreaking to celebrate streetscapes construction that’s now on the horizon, the mood got a little chippy during a City Council meeting that included a discussion on the project’s proposed communication plan.

• Oct. 15 — Fire engine rides, cool demonstrations and a wide range of valuable health and emergency response information returned to Station 201 with the revival this year of the Philomath Fire & Rescue Open House and Strengthening Rural Families Health Fair.

• Oct. 17-21 — The Philomath News published a series of Q-and-A articles on candidates for Philomath City Council, Philomath mayor, Benton County commissioner and 10th district state representative. A story was also published on the school district’s local operating levy renewal and a moratorium on psilocybin-related services in Philomath.

• Oct. 20 — In comparison to statewide averages and numbers from neighboring schools, the Philomath School District appears to be above average based on the data reported through the Oregon Department of Education’s “At-A-Glance” district and school profiles.

• Oct. 21 — Philomath High School crowned its first-ever “monarchs” for homecoming royalty at Clemens Field as part of a student effort to make royalty selection more gender inclusive. Senior Elizabeth Morales-Marquez and sophomore Janice Hellesto were both chosen to wear the crown based on the voting of their classmates.

• Oct. 22-23 and Oct. 29-30 — Working artists welcomed folks back into their studios on these two weekends with the Philomath Open Studios art tour and sale.

• Oct. 24 — Retired Philomath doctors David Cutsforth and David Grube celebrated the 45th anniversary of Philomath Family Medicine’s opening. The pair took a look back at establishing the clinic with their arrival in 1977.

• Oct. 24 — City councilors and school board members sat at the table to provide perspectives on what should be prioritized when it comes to improving school traffic safety.

• Oct. 26 — The Oregon Board of Forestry approved more than 100 changes to the Forest Practices Act at a special board meeting.

• Oct. 27 — A motorist driving on Alpine Road near Bellfountain Road in rural Benton County was killed Thursday after crashing into a dump truck in a construction zone.

• Oct. 27 — Just two hours after being released from Benton County Jail, a convicted felon picked out a random Philomath home on the western edge of town and attempted to rape the woman living there, prosecutors said. The alleged attacker, identified as 37-year-old Linus Ezra Morgan, of Corvallis, reportedly suffered two stab wounds and left the woman’s residence before he was taken into police custody near a convenience store on South Eighth Street.

• Oct. 31 — Costumed kids from Philomath and the surrounding area got a jump on candy collecting at the annual Trunk or Treat event in the downtown vicinity on the afternoon of Halloween.

The Philomath community Christmas tree lights up a rainy night sky on Tuesday in front of the museum. (Photo by Eric Niemann)


• Nov. 7 — A fire that appears to have been ignited by a faulty home heating system damaged a Blodgett home.

• Nov. 7-11 — PHS seniors participated in College Application Week with counselors seeing a “strong going-to-college culture” continuing on the local campus.

• Nov. 8 — Philomath Mayor Chas Jones led his opponent by a wide margin, the City Council saw a very close vote for the fifth and sixth seats, the school district’s local option levy renewal passed by an overwhelming margin and a measure to place a moratorium on psilocybin manufacturing and service facilities in Philomath passed in unofficial results out of the general election. For the six council seats, the top four were solid with Christopher McMorran, Teresa Nielson, Matt Lehman and Diane Crocker. Ruth Causey had a slight lead for fifth and Peggy Yoder was clinging to sixth with David Low, Jessica Andrade and Catherine Biscoe not far behind.

• Nov. 9 — An election results update placed David Low in sixth place for the final seat with Jessica Andrade one vote back, Peggy Yoder four back and Catherine Biscoe 15 back.

• Nov. 9 — Two local veterans in their 90s were recipients of Quilts of Valor during the Community Veterans Day Celebration at Philomath Scout Lodge. U.S. Navy veteran Dalmon “Ed” Calcote, 99, and U.S. Marine Corps veteran David Bagley, 92, were both honored during a special presentation.

• Nov. 10 — James V. Morales, director/county clerk of the Benton County Records and Elections Department, said if the Philomath City Council election numbers remained close, an automatic recount would be triggered.

• Nov. 12 — Kevin Weist, an Alsea resident who was well known in Philomath as the operator of Weist Logging, died in a crash on the Alsea-Deadwood Highway.

• Nov. 14 — A veterans memorial park coming soon to a Philomath neighborhood took a step forward with the City Council’s approval of its conceptual design.

• Nov. 14 — Fifteen Philomath Citizens Academy program participants were recognized during a City Council meeting.

• Nov. 14 — City Manager Chris Workman confirmed that a large elm tree in front of Philomath Community Library would not be removed as part of the streetscapes work and appeared to be on track to become the city’s first Heritage Tree.

• Nov. 17 — Benton County Elections updated the unofficial results and Jessica Andrade was in sixth place — the final seat on the Philomath City Council — by one vote over David Low.

• Nov. 17 — A fire in the early morning hours destroyed a house on Henderson Road about eight miles southwest of Philomath. The residents of the house, which is located on Starker Forests property, were not home at the time of the fire.

• Nov. 17 — High school sophomore Jackson Holroyd will have a voice on the Philomath School Board through the rest of the academic year thanks to a decision to add a student representative.

• Nov. 17-19 — Philomath High students hit the stage for four shows of “High School Musical” with 41 students participating and new directors and other support staff.

• Nov. 28 — The $12.3 million Downtown Safety and Streetscape Improvement Project officially started.

• Nov. 28 — The initial phase of the city’s efforts to modernize Philomath’s aging water system cleared a hurdle with the City Council’s approval of a $4.2 million bid to construct a water reservoir.

• Nov. 29 — The 16th annual Philomath Community Christmas Tree Lighting Celebration took place on Main Street in front of the Philomath Museum.

• Nov. 30 — Based on the most recent Nov. 8 general election results published by the Benton County Elections Office, Philomath City Council candidates Jessica Andrade and David Low appeared to be headed to a recount. The latest update showed Andrade still leading Low by just one vote at 1,225 to 1,224 for the sixth and final seat on the council.

• Nov. 30 — Longtime Philomath police officer Mark Koeppe retired from the local department. He was honored by colleagues with a retirement ceremony at City Hall.

A house in the 800 block of Main Street was damaged by a tree. (Photo provided by Philomath Public Works)


• Dec. 2 — Youth activities entered the spotlight with the Philomath Youth Activities Club’s Annual Fund Dinner. Dena Smith received the organization’s Promise Builder Award.

• Dec. 6 — Philomath Fire & Rescue expresses the real need for new volunteers as the organization was close to wrapping up a record year for calls.

• Dec. 5-6 — The Benton County Elections Office recounted general election votes for Philomath City Council candidates Jessica Andrade and David Low and the results confirmed that Andrade had won by one vote.

• Dec. 7 — David Bagley, unable to attend a Veterans Day celebration in November, was honored with a surprise presentation of a Quilt of Valor, given to him by two members of the Marine Corps Reserves.

• Dec. 10 — Taking time out of what is obviously his busiest month of the year, Santa Claus visited Philomath Community Library to meet with local children.

• Dec. 12 — A developer’s request to rezone property on the corner of Chapel Drive and South 19th Street to be able to build four five-plexes came out of the Philomath City Council meeting with no decision.

• Dec. 12 — The Philomath School Board plans to revisit the trimester vs. semester debate with the scheduling of a work session sometime in early 2023.

• Dec. 12 — The Philomath City Council issued a favorable performance evaluation for City Manager Chris Workman through a prepared press release.

• Dec. 13 — Philomath High School and Philomath Academy classrooms were shut down because of a sewer system problem.

• Dec. 14 — Nearing the conclusion of an epic 3,365-mile walk on Highway 20 across America to raise awareness for soldiers missing and killed in action, Marine Corps veterans Justin “JD” LeHew and Coleman “Rocky” Kinzer paused for a few minutes at midday to chat with folks in front of Philomath Fire & Rescue’s Main Street station.

• Dec. 14 — Benton County Circuit Court sentenced 51-year-old Charles Lynn Golliher to six years and three months in prison for actions leading to the death of a 35-year-old woman in January at Fort Hoskins Historical Park.

• Dec. 17 — The Philomath Gleaners manager reported a significant increase in the number of people utilizing the Philomath Community Services program.

• Dec. 22-23 — Philomath residents tried to stay off roads as a significant ice storm hit the area.

• Dec. 27 — High winds caused widespread damage to homes, trees and power lines around Philomath and vicinity. An example of the damage seen was a fir tree that appeared to crash down through the covered porch of a house located in the 800 block of Main Street.

• Dec. 28 — Benton County Commissioner Pat Malone and Sheriff Jef Van Arsdall were sworn into office by Judge Joan Demarest.

• Dec. 29 — A 62-year-old man and a 57-year-old woman were both hospitalized with gunshot wounds following an incident that apparently occurred in Blodgett.

• Dec. 30 — Tina Gonzales-Ross, 57, of Blodgett, was arrested in the shooting of a 62-year-old man and faces charges that include attempted murder, first-degree assault and unlawful use of a weapon.

• Dec. 31 — Maxtivity, the Philomath-based nonprofit arts and crafts creative space, brought in the new year by hosting a fundraiser at Philomath Museum that featured a live-action role-playing mystery adventure and an art auction. The organization also hosted a ball drop and chain reaction art event at noon and midnight.

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