Starla Pointer

"Stopping By:" A reporter who knows that everyone has an interesting story to tell welcomes suggestions.

Rusty Rae/News-Register##Gary Brooks shows off the working miniature sawmill, which he reconstructed over 18 months at the Yamhill Valley Heritage Center. He also volunteers in the museum’s real sawmill. Both turn trees into lumber, the real mill for building projects and the tiny mill for rulers.

Stopping By: On history’s cutting edge

Railroad enthusiast Gary Brooks faithfully crafts working replica sawmill and other miniatures  

Submitted photo##Grandpa Rick John enjoys spending time on his small “ranch” with his grandkids, from left, Hannah, Lucy, Jackson, Oliver and Kameron.

Stopping by: A policy of giving back

When Rick John drives the streets of McMinnville, he notices familiar houses in every neighborhood. “I’ve been in that one, and that one, and that one,” he says to himself. Back ...

Marcus Larson
Marcus Larson/News-Register##A peace pole proclaims “May Peace Prevail on Earth” in four languages in the yard of Ben and Liz Stein in McMinnville.

Stopping by: Garden of peace

A grizzly bear once observed Ben and Liz Stein’s yard from its perch atop the stump of a sequoia. Now it has moved closer to the house, and sits watching the goldfish dart about the front-yard pond. “It’s ...

Marcus Larson/News-Register##Candle maker Stephanie Sherman repeatedly transfers hot wax between two metal pots to cool it down before pouring it into molds.

Stopping By / Waxing poetic: Business burns with passion for creating candles

Everyone has a passion. For Stephanie Sherman, it’s candles that really light her fire. She burns candles for their scent and gentle light. But she also makes and sells them, both for everyday use ...

Marcus Larson/News-Register##Artist Phyllice Bradner demonstrates her printing press with a piece comprised of several sacred symbols. Her prints will be featured in an upcoming Currents Gallery show.

Stopping By: Mirror images

Print artist exhibits works, and how they are made, in Currents Gallery show

Photo by Douglass Fletcher Sisk##Gretchen Yoder, right, judges Kristine Rothwell in the caber competition at a Scottish Festival in Enumclaw, Washington, in 2019. Rothwell is one of the Titan athletes who will throw in McMinnville this year.

Stopping By: Great Scot

Celtic Heritage Alliance member Gretchen Yoder throws her experience in support of competition 

Marcus Larson/News-Register##Now that she is retired from her insurance agency, Chris Browne will have more time to spend with her hydrangeas and other flowers in her garden. She loves surrounding herself with friends, as well.

Stopping By: Mover and shaker since 1978, Chris Browne makes new plans

Chris Spika Browne hadn’t heard of McMinnville in 1978 when she applied for the job of Chamber of Commerce director. Forty-three years later, it’s hard for her to imagine not being part of ...

Rusty Rae/News-Register ## Vicki Gunn uses a bucket of gray water -- already used for rinsing vegetables or washing dishes —- to water part of the garden outside her Yamhill home. She reuses as much water as possible.


Plenty of mulch, companion plantings and intentional shade help Victoria “Vicki” Gunn reduce water consumption in the garden that surrounds her home in Yamhill. When she does give ...

Marcus Larson/News-Register ##
Oregon Soccer Volunteer of the Year award nominee Lucas Partin joins in a game of Sharks and Minnows during a recent youth practice in Carlton. Lucas has been playing since kindergarten and helping coaches almost as long.

Stopping by: 'Soccer is it'

13-year-old volunteer coach focuses on his passion so younger kids can do the same Lucas Partin loves playing soccer. He also loves helping younger kids learn about both the skills needed in ...

Rusty Rae/News-Register ## Julian, 3, helps his parents, Jonathan and Melissa Martinez, with their flowers and other plants. Their yard, which features a pond and waterfall, was honored by the McMinnville Garden Club this month.

Yard of the Month: A garden crafted with care

Bees, fish and flowers thrive in Martinez family’s lush yard Bees love visiting the yard of Jonathan and Melissa Martinez, 480 S.W. Russ Court, McMinnville. They can buzz through the roses, ...

Rusty Rae/News-Register ## Retired Mac High track and cross country coach Vic Downs collects vintage and collectible watches. In the background are plastic tubs of watches and watch parts.

Stopping by: Time on his hands

Vic Downs probably has more watches than there are minutes in a day. In fact, since the McMinnville man started his collecting with a very special family watch, Downs estimates that “about ...

Rusty Rae/News-Register ##
Milanya Allen, a member of the Bacon Bits & Friends 4-H Club, holds a 7-week-old goat that soon will be entered along with its mom in the “Dam and Daughter” competition.


Even before the Yamhill County Fair & Rodeo officially opened Wednesday morning, local young people were busy tending and showing their animals in 4-H and FFA competitions. Brayden Bullock ...

Marcus Larson/News-Register ## Artist Dianne Barske chooses just the right colors for her latest painting. Her work has shown in galleries and is featured in her children’s book “Mukluks for Annabelle,” pictured below, about how the community helped an Alaskan elephant keep her feet warm.


Artist and writer Dianne Barske was showing her paintings at a gallery in Anchorage when she was approached by Sammye Seawell, founder of the Alaska Zoo, then called the Alaska Children’s ...

Marcus Larson/News-Register ## John and Beccie Holland enjoy growing flowers and vegetables in their Cypress Street yard.

Yard of the Month: Just the right ratio

Beauty and therapy thrive in the Hollands’ garden No need to look for Beccie and John Holland’s address as you drive south on Cypress Street; their bountiful flowers make it clear ...