1. Springfield Police Department holds it's 20th annual K9 Competition this Saturday. You guys, this is so much fun. Please take your family and go!
When: Saturday, June 13th, from noon - 3 pm
Where: Silke Field (Springfield High's football stadium)
What: K9 units from all over Oregon come and compete in super cool events. These are some impressive dogs. Every year we are blown away. You'll get to see the dogs sniff out a "bad" guy, navigate an obstacle course, chase and "bite" a "bad" guy, and more. Afterwards you can meet the dogs and officers and take your picture with them.
Parking: Plenty of free parking
Time Frame: You can come and go as you please. Super causal. Since it's free, you don't need to feel badly if your kiddo gets bored and throws a fit and you have to leave after only an hour. No biggie.
Food: Hot dogs, chips, pop, and maybe candy (I can't remember if there's candy...) are available for purchase at really reasonable prices. The proceeds go to the K9 program. We always plan on eating lunch there, since it's for a good cause, and because hot dogs are the best.
Resting/Nursing Spots: You'll sit on the bleachers, so bring blankets to sit on or some of those portable stadium chairs with backs.
Push or wear: Wear those babies. Since you're going to be in the bleachers, you'll want to leave your stroller at home if you can.
Good to Know:
- Sometimes the action slows down a bit as dogs and handlers get organized and prepared for events. If your littles get antsy, you'll need to take a few books or something to fill the gaps. - The dogs are super friendly when you meet them, but during the competition they run fast, bark, bite handler's arms (when they're wearing a protective sleeve), and display other semi-intimidating behaviors. If your kiddo is inclined to be frightened by that sort of thing, be sure to talk about it beforehand.
- Here's a video of the competition in 2011. Super cool!
When: June 27th, from 7 am - 5 pm (actually the gates just close at 5, but you can stay until sunset if you want.)
Where: Green Island - the property has no address, but you can put the address of the nearest house ( 31668 Green Island Road Eugene, Oregon 97408) into your map app to get you there. It's about 15 minutes outside of town.
What: This property usually isn't open to the public, so they open it up to let everyone enjoy it for this event. It is truly a fun and beautiful spot. You should absolutely go.
Parking: Free parking
Time Frame: As much time as you want. Pack a picnic and spend a few hours exploring. You won't regret it.
Food: There is food for sale, but you're also welcome to bring your own. The website has a list of participating vendors.
Resting/Nursing Spots: Not really a ton. The website says to bring chairs or a blanket for picnicking.
Wear or Push: Sturdy jogging strollers will be fine. Otherwise, wear the babies.
Good to Know
- We had literally no idea what this event was when we attended for the first time last year. We just showed up. While we're so very glad we did, because it was a blast, it was sort of difficult to figure out what was going on. It's run by volunteers and is sort of...causal. There are several trails that you can hike, but last year they were poorly signed and it was impossible to tell how long any trails were or whether they looped you back to the main Hub or what. So don't be afraid to ask for help from any of the friendly volunteer staff.
- The Hub is where a lot of the action is. There is food, live music, and lots of cool opportunities for the bigger kids to check outdoorsy stuff like climbing trees or paddling around in a canoe.
- If you register your family in advance online you'll be entered to win a $100 gift card to REI. Registration isn't required, but they're encouraging it so they can track how many people to expect.
- If you can, go during the hours that Ninkasi and Oakshire breweries will be pouring (noon-4). Last year they were pouring full size pints for free!
- Be sure to wear appropriate footwear - you'll be walking lots on gravel and dirt paths. Last year there were some puddles and my kiddo had a wonderful time splashing around in those.
- There are hay rides! They're such a wonderful way to check out the giant property if you have littles with tired legs. However! Last year they only did a few, and initially they said we'd missed them all. However, the tractor driver tour guide said that if my family sat on the trailer bed and recruited enough people to fill it up, he'd take us all out for a ride. So we did, and he did. So friendly, right?! Be sure not to miss the hay ride!
- The McKenzie River Trust's website is super well done - organized, easy to navigate, and really informational. Spend some time poking around there before you go, and you'll be way prepared to enjoy yourself.
- Really, this is just a chance to check out a cool outdoor spot that you normally wouldn't get to enjoy. It is an awesome opportunity.
Megan Defferding is the mom to two super fun boys who love to find great stuff to do all around Lane County! Check out her blog series, Happy Adventuring, weekly on GoMomGo.