Festival of Lights/Safari/Dinner

December 13, 2005

We left Eugene at l p.m. under foggy skies. As we headed south on I-5 the fog lifted and we had partly cloudy skies, some sun and a very nice December day. We took the Cottage Grove exit see the lighted covered bridge, but it was too early in the day. So, we drove some of the back roads in Cottage Grove and saw another covered railroad bridge. We continued on to Wildlife Safari where guest services gave Liz Reanier and Verna Kocken two tickets—one for everyone to get hot chocolate and one to ride the train. Everyone followed Dick and Janet Speelman to the train station and later went to the snack shack for our hot chocolate. We began gathering in the White Rhino Restaurant about 4:30. It was very festive. There were Christmas decorations everywhere and, as darkness approached, the whole restaurant was surrounded by colored lights. Our turkey or lemon chicken breast was served buffet style, although the waitresses served each person and the tables were set with white table cloths and napkins and there was plenty of coffee and cranberry sauce. Dessert was either pumpkin pie and whip cream or cheesecake. Dennis, our host, introduced the staff following dinner.

We left about 7 and drove back to Roseburg and the Festival of Lights. We went through twice as it is impossible to take in everything the first time. There were many lighted animals, the American flag, war scenes and many Christmas legends depicted in lights. It was crowded, as this was a free night, but we left our contribution anyhow. We drove around Roseburg for a view of the community college while Verna Kocken described some of the buildings on the campus. We arrived home about 9:30. Thanks to John Bunker, our driver; Mary Lee Cheadle for taking reservations; Verna Kocken and Liz Reanier; Dick and Janet Speelman; and to Barbara and Paul Beard, who brought delicious Christmas goodies and sparkling cider for our rest stop south of Rice Hill. Those enjoying this festive occasion were: Ethel Allen, Ewart Baldwin, Paul and Barbara Beard, Paula Beard, Pat Brill, Mary Bridgeman, Mary Lee Cheadle, Sharon Cutsforth, Connie Dooley, Virginia Gilbreath, Jean England, Fay Englund, Margaret Fea, Rachele Fiszman, Janice Frawley, Bette Hack (leader), Mary Ann Holser, Dora Harris, Georg Jaschek, Miriam Jaschek, Verna Kocken, Connie and Ed McIndoo, Barbara and Don Payne, Liz Reanier, Edith Rode, John and Nancy Schreiner, Julia Snell, Dick and Janet Speelman and Vera Woolley.

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