Friends, Music, and a Beautiful New BnB in the Okanogan

At the Esther Bricques Winery on October 18, our friends  and Up the Crickband members Rick Braman and Chris Stodola were providing the music; their current playlist is hugely entertaining, and the harmonies and delivery have become very polished. They’ve lost none of their campy schmaltz, and will still blame the invisible drummer “Raul” for any flubs. All part of the charm these guys bring to the show. Was also nice to see many Canadian friends in the audience – including members of the Okanagon International Chorus in Osoyoos.

Had a chance to talk with Valerie Barker Braman about the conversion of the beautiful cottage they built to a BnB, associated with the Air BnB agency. I know Rick’s wood working skills are tops – I’ve seen the results, so it’s no surprise to know their BnB customers are quick to write glowing reviews of the facilities, the area (Aeneas Valley) and of course the hosts.

If you have friends or family that would like to visit the area and experience the fullness of Okanogan beauty it is easy to recommend Val and Rick. Visit their AirBnB page to see what they offer and the warm reviews. This is a very nice local success story and we congratulate the Bramans for their great contribution to the Okanogan experience.

https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/25941667

Here’s a preview.

AeneasValleyAirBnB
AeneasValley Air BnB

Culinary Gems at Oroville’s Farmers’ Market

Farmers Market, Oroville, Great Food

by James Gutschmidt

Some things are just great, unsurpassed. Like: homemade apple pie, a freshly mowed dandelion patch, (see pic), a man and his dog, and a great burger. I’m not talking about something run of the mill, here. I’m talking a great masterpiece.

I’m talking about Tina’s Burgers at the Farmers Market, Saturdays, in Oroville. There is no fanfare involved with these burgers. Place your order. Wait for Tina to custom barbeque it. A little mayo, a little ketchup, barbeque sauce, that’s out of this world, on a glazed bun, and, Voila, the best burger I’ve had in 50 years.

Oh, and did I tell you, the meat is from her own Irish Dexter, grass fed beef raised here in the great Okanogan? Butchered ground and certified, it’s the quality ingredients that make it right; worth traveling for.

“Masterpiece” That’s the term used by Greg Palmer to describe the “Cheese Deluxe” hamburgers that were fashioned at the Samoa Drive-In on Mercer Island 50 years ago.

Being spoiled in my youth, I remember well those burgers on Mercer Island. Quality goods made it good. And, I have waited 50 years till now, for the like.

If you were wondering, and like to read, I would recommend Greg Palmer’s Memoir “Cheese Deluxe.” It’s an interesting anecdote of the Samoa Drive-In, from 50 years ago, and a sometimes humorous account of upscale, 1960’s youthful characters, and their escapades. It’s remembered from the perspective of a pubescent, but mildly intellectual, short order cook. He’s changed the names, but I know them all well, because I was there. The chapter on the Golden Horseshoe is especially entertaining. And, the Samoa Burgers were a complete “masterpiece,” as described in chapter one. It’s reminiscent of small town life, before condos and tower cranes, kinda like Oroville.

By the way, don’t forget to take in the other exhibits at the Oroville Farmer’s Market. If you were wondering, Tina is the assistant cook at Oroville Senior Center, lunches served Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays.

Noteworthy farmers at the Oroville Farmers’ Market, Saturdays.

The German Sausages melt in your mouth. Jim Weaver and Ken Zimmerlee
The German Sausages melt in your mouth. Jim Weaver and Ken Zimmerlee
Is that Dennis Peterson on the ukulele? Randy Battle Bluz Band
Is that Dennis Peterson on the ukulele? Randy Battle Bluz Band

Highland Beauty
Fresh Mow

Nothing is more beautiful than a freshly mowed dandelion patch in the Okanogan Highlands, 12 miles east of Oroville. The picture is taken from our dining room window, looking west. Great place to be.

Article by James Gutschmidt on special loan to North Okanogan – an Online Magazine. All rights reserved by international copyright laws.

P.S. For the editor. I thoroughly enjoyed the music, and your harmonica, at the Farmers Market. Great sound.

July 4th with the Taber Family

For a while Monday evening Oroville was no longer lost in space (see previous article). Thanks to the Oroville department of sky rockets department and the Taber family the sky was lit up bright for nearly 90 minutes. I don’t recall ever seeing so many exploding shells per minute as what we enjoyed this 4th. Being very family oriented the Tabers had a special area set up for kids to take part with safe but exciting fireworks, and there were dozens there to take advantage. The celebration was preceded by a presentation of the colors performed by the kids and the playing of the Star-Spangled Banner. Thanks to Dave and Judi and the entire family, and the city of Oroville for a fun evening.

Here’s a 7 minute vid which can’t capture the experience so be there next time!

And here is the presentation of the colors.

Presenting the Colors ~ A Toni Brown photo
Presenting the Colors ~ A Toni Brown photo