Culture & History Podcast Series

Want to know more about the culture and history of an area? In this podcast series, we cover things like roundabout art, city murals, hidden treasures along trails, and ghost town history.

Index by area / topic:

Central Oregon

Learn about the oldest existing structure in Deschutes County and how homesteading impacts us today. Joining us is Kelly Cannon Miller, the Executive Director of the Deschutes Historical Museum and Vanessa Ivey the Manager of the Deschutes Historical Museum.

Learn more about the history of Drake Park!. Joining us today is Kelly Cannon Miller, the Executive Director of the Deschutes Historical Museum and Vanessa Ivey the Manager of the Deschutes Historical Museum.

Learn about the history of the Old Mill, how it influenced the name of our city and what it looked and felt like when the mills were operating. Joining us is Kelly Cannon Miller, the Executive Director of the Deschutes Historical Museum and Vanessa Ivey the Manager of the Deschutes Historical Museum.

Bend, now a town of outdoor enthusiasts, micro-breweries, and technology used to be the center of timber production. The Old Mill District was the heart of this activity with two active mills, one on the east bank of the river and one on the west bank. In the 1950s over 50 rail cars per day would off-load timber into the river. On today’s show, long-term resident and bad-ass gravel cyclist Jeff Boulet shares snippets of history with us. 

In this podcast, we talk with Mike Hollern, the Chairman of the Board for Brooks Resources, about the early days of roundabouts in the city of Bend. Learn about the first roundabout, some of the challenges in building the first, and some of the unique benefits.

Here from the artist Douglas Robertson who created the mural of Women of Discovery near Discovery Park on the west side of Bend, Oregon. What was the inspiration for the piece? How was the work done? Where can you find more of his work.

NE Oregon

Learn all about the Wallowa Barn Tour. In this episode, we talk with Jennifer Piper of the Wallowa Chamber of Commerce and Alana Carollo of the Eastern Oregon Visitors Association. Learn how the Barn Tour got started, what you will see. We also talk about two other ways to experience the culture of the area: Farm Trails and a historic collection of farm implements.

Learn a little about the gold mining history in the Blue Mountains, from dredge mining to hard-rock mining to some of the clean-up efforts. 

A short micro-cast with Kevin English, one of the founders of Dirty Freehub, where he talks about what he learned of the early history of Granite, Oregon. A small town in the NE quadrant of the state.

Death Valley

There is a rugged, gnarly gravel road, the only road, through the Grapevine Mountains in Death Valley National Park. It is the Titus Canyon Road – a great gravel bike ride, 25 miles with an elevation loss of over 5000 feet. But … how did that road come to be? In this podcast, we talk with Jeremy Stoltzfus, a Death Valley Park Ranger who is in charge of mining history and artifacts. Jeremy has been with the park service for over 16 years, all the time in Death Valley.

Bend Trails

In this episode, we’re going to learn about proper bike etiquette on the Bend multi-use trails and paths. These paths are located throughout Bend in places the Old Mill, Shevlin Park and the Deschutes river. Our guest today is Henry Stroud who is a Planner at Bend Parks and Recreation.

Ever wonder who has right of way on those single-track trails in Central Oregon? Downhill rider? Uphill rider? The runner? Who? In this episode of The Connection, we speak with Emmy Andrews the Executive Director of the Central Oregon Trail Alliance about trail etiquette. 

In this episode, talk the art of mountain bike trail building in Central Oregon. For us, gravel cyclists, some of these trails are super sweet to ride. Our guest is Kent Howes who is a master trail builder and has been building trails for over 30 years, he’s also been a professional trail builder since 2007. 

Voodoo is a short trail segment that runs roughly along a contour line in Phil’s trail system in Bend, Oregon. Do you know why that is? Hear from Ben Husaby, one of the creators of the Voodoo Trail.

Here more about the original design of Ben’s trail from author, Ben Husaby.

Did you know that Ben’s Trail wasn’t built initially for mountain biking but as a training trail for nordic skiing? Hear from Ben Husaby, the creator of Ben’s Trail.

Here is the little known story of what Storm King might have been called.

Have you ever been riding at Phil’s and wondered, what do all these trail names mean and who came up with these? Eric L. Vickers, who was one of the pioneers responsible for the early formation of the Phil’s trail network, is going to answer these burning questions, many of us have.

Hear from the early trail builders Eric Vickers and Ben Husaby about the master plan at the Phil’s complex (or lack thereof), finding trails before maps, and what it meant to be a trail author.

Have you ever wondered about the backstory of the gnomes on the ELV trail in Bend, Oregon. Eric L Vickers talks a bit about how this all happened. Did you make the connection? ELV. Eric L Vickers.

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