Next Stop: Central Oregon

Whitewater River Rafting with Sun Country Tours, Tour of Deschutes Brewery, Cool Art in the High Desert, Year Round Things to do at the Sunriver Resort, Ghost Tree Invitational Golf Tournament, Music of Lee Koch

NEXT STOP CENTRAL OREGON-Transcription Season 3


00:00-00:05 JON: Hi, I’m JOn Olson and welcome to Next Stop, from a destination where memories aren’t just made-they are found.


00:20-00:42 JON: Welcome to Central Oregon, a high desert paradise for families and singles alike. This is the adventure capital of the Pacific Northwest, and on this episode we will take you rafting, golfing, and biking. We will feature local brews and cuisine, and take you to THE party of the year. We will also feature a fantastic musician with an even better story. All this and more from Next Stop Central Oregon, the fun starts now!

00:43-00:44 Next Stop Logo

00:45 JON: For  25 years the Deschutes Brewery has been producing award winning microbrews. In fact, they currently produce the nations favorite craft porter. Let’s meet the man that started in all. There he is, I am so honored to meet you, I have been drinking your beer now for about 2 decades. In 1988 did you ever have any idea that the pub in downtown Bend would grow into this?

GARY: Oh heavens no. We, you know, really all we started was a pub, my background was the restaurant business. We just wanted to make a little bit of beer, some good food, our business plan said we could make a tidy living, raise our family in a beautiful town like Bend, and that was really all we planned on.

JON: This is the room that started in all, right?

GARY: This is the room, this is the original 50 barrel J.D. Northwest brewhouse that we put in in 1993, and we continued to grow and put in a lot more modern operation.

JON: Now, I’ve never been to a brewery that had a room like this.

GARY: This is where our trained panel does this every single day, 5 days a week. Our technician on the other side of the wall can put down whatever beers they want tasted and analyzed on that day, and then the computer screen will prompt the taster with questions that they can answer, that then are all compiled on the computer.

2:04 JON: So you’ve got the quality control, but really, it’s all about the product too, right?

GARY: It’s absolutely about the ingredients, and what we have here is really a display of what the ingredients are. What we here is malted barley, herbs and spices, we have some corriander and a little bit of orange peel here. This particular hop is centennials.

JON: It’s kind of embarrassing but I kind of  need a restroom break..

GARY: well, if you need a restroom, we’ve got one over here.

JON: Oh, cool.

GARY: Right behind this door

JON: Thank you.  OH MY! That might be the coolest restroom I’ve ever been in my entire life, but there was no restroom.

GARY: Well if you wanted a bathroom , they are over there. This is a rest room, this is where we come for our breaks.

JON: So everybody gets a pint, or whatever, after their shift.

GARY: Everybody gets a shift pint after they are finished with work.

02:58 JON: These tanks are quite impressive, different sizes.

GARY: Yeah, these are, you can kind of see , wherever we are, this is the old roof line that was part of our building, you can kind of chart our growth by whatever size tanks we were buying at the time. See you, got that? Just like that!

JON: That is so cool. Don’t you feel like we are on Laverne and Shirley right now?

GARY: Yeah, exactly.

03:29 JON: Now for some reason, everytime I talk about beer, I get thirsty.

GARY: It’s unbelievable how that happens, but this is what all the hard work is for.

JON: This is America’s favorite craft porter, and it happens to be mine. I didn’t ever drink dark beer in the day until I went to your pub in Bend and I tried Deschutes Black Butte Porter, and I loved it.

GARY: We keep saying Black Butte Porter is the beer that dispels all the myths about dark beer. People love it, women love it, men love it, it is the beer that we think once people can get past the color, it is a beer to fall in love with. Cheers.

JON: Cheers.

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04:11-04:17 JON: Coming up, a colorful art show in the high desert, and a world class year round resort

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04:23 JON: Timing is everything, and we were lucky enough to be in Bend, Oregon on the weekend of Art in the High Desert, on of the top 15 art shows in the country. Carla, take us back, how did this all start?

CARLA: This started with 5 people, 4 of them artists, and we wanted a really good art show because we knew Bend needed it, deserved it, and would love it. we all put in 200 dollars, and with 1,000 dollars we started this show.

JON: Obviously people are coming out to support it, I see hundreds of people all over the place.

CARLA: Yeah, we’ve now got people who come to Bend just for this weekend.

JON: You mentioned you are an artist, I saw you doing a transaction over there. You’re not just the director, you are also one of the participants.

CARLA: Yeah, I’m sort of schizophrenic this time of year, because I am also trying to sell art and be a jeweler.

JON: The location is fantastic, I love the new district down here, I used to come here years ago and this has, it’s really grown up.

CARLA: They have, on really hot shows I can look out and see artists floating down the river, going…

JON: Taking a break?

CARLA: And I’ve gone, whoa! Get back in your booth!

05:27 JON: This is Amy, she is here all the way from North Carolina.

AMY: Yee haw! Oh wait, that’s Texas

JON: They say that in North Carolina too.

AMY: Yeah they do. What do I think of this? I want to move here! It gorgeous.

JON: Isn’t it nice?

AMY: Plus I’ve had 3 consecutive days of fabulous hair.

JON: Your stuff is fun!

AMY: Thank you, I call them fo…

JON: What do you call them:

ANY: I call them fobots, short for found object robots, and they all have a name, a number, a date of birth, and like the tin man, they all have a heart inside.

JON: Which is your favorite of these?

AMY: My favorite? Me upon my pony in my boat, which is a song by Lyle Lovett. This is an old toy boat, spice tins, a pool ball, wire brush, funnel, a sash lock, wrenches, his feet are button hole attachments.

06:20 JON: This is David who used to live in Oregon for many years, now you live in Austin Texas.

DAVID: Right. This is an amazing show, it brings so many people together from across the country, the best artists in the country are out here right now.

JON: Your art, all this by pencil, it’s crazy.

DAVID: It is. Well, it is a little bit obsessive, but I call it my obsessive compulsive disorder with a pencil, it’s just what I do.

JON: How long have you been doing that?

DAVID: This kind of work about 35 years.

JON: The elephant one blow my mind that it’s all pencil, and that picture with the depth there, I just love it.

06:53: JON: This is Dakota, and he wins the award for the most colorful, crazy, fun art that we’ve seen all day. How did you get into doing this? There is all these bottle caps, and this is just fun.

DAKOTA:  Yeah, I had a barrel full of caps 12 years ago, and I was doing these sculptural wood, you know, functional sculptures, and I wanted to to make it look metal, so that was the original thought.

JON: You’ve got a dolphin tail over there, you have a cactus representing Texas, and a bowl, what is your favorite piece?

DAKOTA: You know I just did this elk head, that is my favorite piece.

07:28-07:30 Next Stop Logo

07:31 JON: Central Oregon offers 30 unique and challenging golf courses, designed by some of the worlds best golfers and designers. Golf digest named Central Oregon as one of the top 25 places in the world to play golf. Golf enthusiasts planning a trip to Central Oregon can get free travel planning and concierge assistance by phone, live chat, or by

07:49-07:51 Next Stop Logo

07:52 JON: The Sin River Resort is a year round resort, ideal for families and friends, now Scott, you are the General manager here, you’ve been here about 6 years, now I used to come here about 10 or 15 years ago with my friends from Portland, and we had a blast, there is so much to do, but you have a lot more going on right now, you’ve got a lot of enhancements.

SCOTT: We do, over the years the resort has added a lot in regards to amenities, and offerings, and activities, everything from remodeling our guest rooms, to the new homeowner aquatic center labeled The Shark. It’s beautiful, it’s got an indoor pool that is obviously heated year round, an outdoor aquatic park with slides and lazy rivers and kiddy pools and lap lanes.

JON: People like to eat, and you have some pretty good restaurants here too.

SCOTT: We do, we’ve got 9 dining outlets throughout the resort, everything from upscale, we just added a new beer garden outlet this summer.

JON: I always found my way to the owl’s nest, live music, fun environment. I see kids everywhere. People of all ages, all the way to grandparents just really enjoying each other. This is a really special place.

SCOTT: From golf to bike riding, that in and of itself, with 35 miles of pristine bike trails throughout the town of Sun River all adjacent to the Deschutes River, we’ve got over 400 bikes in our bike rental shop.

JON: I’m kind of dying for a workout, I’m thinking that’s good for me to do next.

09:17 JON: This is Rob and he is the director of recreation, let’s go biking!

ROB: Let’s do it.

JON: Rob, I had no idea the interesting history of this place.I thought it was just a big ski resort that was built sometime in the 80’s-no. There is a lot more to it.

ROB: Back in the 40’s, 43 and 44 you know, back in World War Two, you’ve probably heard of that.

JON: I have heard of that actually.

ROB: They, this was an installation for the Army Corps of Engineers, but this building actually was the officers club.

JON: That’s cool man. Carry on soldier.

ROB: Aye, aye.

JON: This is beautiful.

ROB: You know it. The great meadow, we call it.

10:04 JON: Obviously there is a lot more going on than just biking here.

ROB: There is so many activities here that you really need multiple vacations.

JON: This is the ideal family resort, I’ve never seen anything like it, and we see so many kids, brothers and sisters, parents and grandparents, I think this is the best family resort I’ve ever seen.

ROB:  Jon, as the Director of Recreation, you’ve just said the best phrase I have heard in a long time.

10:26 JON: We had a great day here at the Sunriver Resort, we got some biking i n, some exercise, learned some history, and tonight we cap it off in this beautiful serene marina for the family fun float. Tom, what is the family fun float>

TOM: The family fun float is a float we came up with this year where we invite families to come and float 3 miles down river on rafts. It takes about an hour, hour and a half, and it culminates with s’mores and a cowboy singalong. And one of the things you’ve probably noticed from your time here is there is an atmosphere of tranquility here indeed, and the venacular of our youth, it’s a chill place to be.

JON: I can’t think of a better to describe the Sunriver Resort.

11:11-11:13  Next Stop Logo

11:14 JON: Coming up next, whie water rafting on the mighty Deschutes, and a party not to be missed.

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11:25 JON: Central Oregon is stacked with adventure opportunities. Today, we are white water rafting on the Deschutes River with Sun Country tours.

SCOTT: So we are at the Big Eddy thriller here, this is kind of the main event. Part 2 and part 3 are the highlights today, and you guys can see here the giant V going through the river here? Kind of a little hydrology 101 where the lap lateral is the dominant one and it is pushing the water into the rock so our idea today is to stay away from the rocks so we’re going to have a little bit of an angle there, picking on the right side of the raft. So as we go down we are just paddling aggressive, all together smiling, having fun, we’re going to keep it straight through the third part which is kind of a mild tsunami, a soft bucket of water coming at you, and just kind of prepare for that and have fun. Big Eddy on 3, 1, 2, 3 BIG EDDY!

JON: What was it like going in the water, because you looked kind of scared man, I know your mom was scared.

JACKSON: First I was scared, but it was so shallow my feet were touching.

JON: They were? What did you think of the Big Eddy, you didn’t fall in there, how was that?

JACKSON: It was just a wall of white.

JON: Pretty much wasn’t it?


JON: Would you tell your friends to come do it?

JACKSON: Once they saw the Big Eddy, they would turn around and go back.

JON: I think so, but you didn’t. High five buddy! Good job.

13:17 JON: This is Scott, our fearless guide, you were awesome man, you prepped us well for the Big Eddy

SCOTT: Thank you. It’s an awesome trip, it is kind of our shorter white water experience, it is a teaser for all the other great trips that we offer.

JON: What other tours do you guys offer?

SCOTT: So we offer a half day trip on the Mackenzie River, it’s a great family fun trip, class 2’s and 3’s mixed in.

JON: And then of course I failed miserably, because I fell in backwards, on the first wave man.

SCOTT: It happens, and that is the way to go, and we kind of set you up a little bit there to give you experience.

13:54-13:56 Next Stop Logo

13:57 JON: Alaska Airlines started service to Roberts Field in 1982, and proudly continues to offer service to the high desert paradise of Redmond, Bend,and the surrounding areas. On all Alaska Airlines flights into Roberts Field, you will receive Starbucks coffee and complimentary Northwest beers and wine. For more information on destinations, airfares and their award winning mileage program, visit

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14:23 JON: We are in town for the Ghost Tree International followed by dinner on the range back here at the Sunriver Resort, It’s a golf tournament, it’s a charity event, but really it’s just an excuse to have some fun. This is Josh who is originally from these parts, now living in LA, doing an awesome job as MC of this event. This is quite the event my friend.

JOSH: I love this event, I think this is my 5th or 6th year doing it, as long as they will have me, I will be here. It is a spectacular location, the food is incredible.

JON: So it started as a golf tournament yesterday, I kind of bill it as a golf tournament with a really good excuse to have a party.

JOSH: Pretty much, pretty much, yeah we have people from all over the northwest who come to play in the tournament, because we play at Crosswater, which is a Sunriver owned property.

JON: And the whole goal is to raise money for?

JOSH: Well we’ve got the Boys and Girls Club of Central Oregon.

JON: We just ran into Ronald McDonald.

JOSH: Excuse me I think I’ll find him.

JON: He didn’t have any food, no food Josh.

JOSH: Oh, he didn’t? Oh, no fires.

JON: No he didn’t have any burgers or anything, but we ran into him so the Ronald McDonald House is also one of the beneficiaries

JOSH: Ronald McDonald house, that’s right.

JON: I think it is one of the most fun and unique ways to make money that I have ever seen, we actually attended the golf tournament yesterday and witnessed something very cool, check this out.

15:38 JOSH: Well basically I am going to rip a 400 plus yard drive on this hole, this super long par 5. I’m a four time remax finalist, currently ranked 5th longest hitter in the world. When I am not competing, I travel all over the world, hitting for charity events just like this one. Today we’re accepting donations to play my tee shot, the proceeds raised on this hole go to benefit the Ronald McDonald house, that is what this tournament is all about.

16:07 JON: Have you ever seen a guy hit a ball that far?

JOSH: I have never seen anybody hit a ball that far, it’s amazing.

JON: Talk about cool gigs, that guy just travels all over the world and he hits golf balls. Josh made a ton of money for the charities too, so that’s awesome. Tonight we are here at this great party, this is kind of the party of the year for Central Oregon,

JOSH: It is, it absolutely is. nd there are some great parties here, but this one is the creme de la creme.

16:38 JON: Who better than to talk about Central Oregon than the CEO of the Central Oregon Visitors Association, Alana.

ALANA: I think what we deliver is a very chic, authentic, experiential opportunity for vacations, but still in a community that is small enough to be incredibly welcoming and generous of nature of the people that live here.

JON: Now we’ve spent a lot of time in Bend and Sunriver and we love it, but there is a lot more to see here, right?

ALANA: There is, that is the beautiful thing about Central Oregon as a destination, yes, Bend and Sunriver are the heart of it, but within an hours drive you can have a completely different geographic and cultural experience.

JON: What is your favorite Central Oregon memory?

ALANA: For me it’s all about the people. We have 300 days of sunshine, and unlimited recreation, but it is the people that live here who have raised our visitors who have made this something that is really, you just don’t want to miss it.

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17:37 JON: Coming up on Next Stop, a fantastic musician with an even better story.

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18:11 JON: Lee Kich is our featured musician on Next Stop Central Oregon and he is cooking up some serious tunes tonight at the Silver Moon Brewing here in downtown Bend, and you and your wife, and your baby girl are living the dream my brother.

LEE: We are living our dream, it;s not everybody’s dream, but we get to drive around the country playing music, taking pictures, and raising our daughter.

JON: So you had a really killer place in Temecula, you dumped that a few weeks ago and you dumped that, bought an RV, and that is how you guys are living, that is what I mean…

LEE: That’s our home, home on wheels, yeah.

JON: Has it been fun?

LEE: It’s been a blast, and people, especially considering Jolene, our little baby, people are oh, she must be so confined, but we pull up at parks and we let her crawl around, and I think, it might sound kind of  cheesy, but the world is our oyster.


19:53 JON: So where did you get this soulful disposition in music, man you just bring it, you’ve got such an energy onstage.

LEE: It’s really just due to my parents preference in music, listening to Motown a lot, I mean everything from Motown to Led Zepplin to Creedence Clearwater, and then my mom was into more of the jazzy, Nat King Cole and the rat pack guys.

JON: What do you think of Bend, this is your first time to Bend Oregon, you like Central Oregon?

LEE: Everybody that we’ve met is super sweet, any questions they have they want to sit down and not just tell us in passing but, ‘Oh, let me tell you my favorite thing to do’ Everyone has been so great and welcoming so we’re going to be back, we are going to make this an annual stop for sure.


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21:32 JON: Thanks for tuning into Next Stop from the high desert paradise of Central Oregon, and thanks to this show’s sponsors, the Sunriver Resort and the Central Oregon Visitors Association. Thanks also to our title sponsors and good friends Alaska Airlines, and the Alaska Airlines VISA signature card. Without them, we wouldn’t be here. Next Stop, where will we take you next? Make good memories everybody.

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