Mid-Valley Chapter – Willamette Writers in Eugene

Willamette Writers Chapters are local writing communities where writers improve their craft and acquire the career skills required in today's publishing world.

The Mid-Valley Chapter offers monthly meetings and occasional workshops. Meetings are normally held at Tsunami Books on the first Thursday of the month (unless it conflicts with a holiday, usually Sept. and/or Jan.) from September-May. No meetings in December, July, or August. In August we head to Portland for the Willamette Writers Conference.

Monthly meetings are open to all writers 18 and older. Members attend for free.  Read on to learn about our chapter, and join our mailing list to keep in touch.

Become a Willamette Writers Member today to enjoy membership benefits (like free meetings) and to support our community of writers.

Upcoming Meeting

There are no upcoming events at this time.

About the Meetings

Young Willamette Writers are invited to attend monthly Young Willamette Writers meetings in their area (there are no meetings in July or August. Check your local chapter for any December events).

Meetings are for kids aged  13 to 18 years of age.

Portland Meeting:

Portland has an excellent meeting that is held at the same time and place as the adult Willamette Writers meetings on the first Tuesday of the month from September through June. We meet from 7 – 8 p.m. at The Old Church in downtown Portland at SW 11th and Clay.

Central Point Meeting:

Meets the first Saturday of each month in Central Point.  Meetings are held from 10 a.m. until noon in the Central Point Library - 116 South 3rd Street, Central Point, OR 97520. This meeting serves the region from Grants Pass to Ashland and is for kids aged  13 to 18 years of age.

The Chapter Co-Chairs

The Mid-Valley Chapter is run by two co-chairs who together create a program to fit the needs and interests of the Willamette Writers members from the Eugene-Springfield area.

Sarina Dorie

Sarina Dorie has sold over 150 short stories to markets like Analog, Daily Science Fiction, Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, Orson Scott Card’s IGMS, Cosmos, and Abyss and Apex. Her stories and published novels have won humor and Romance Writer of America awards. She has sold three novels to publishers. Her steampunk romance series, The Memory Thief and her collections, Fairies, Robots and Unicorns—Oh My! and Ghosts, Werewolves and Zombies—Oh My! are available on Amazon, along with a dozen other novels she has written.By day, Sarina is a public school art teacher, artist, belly dance performer and instructor, copy editor, fashion designer, event organizer and probably a few other things. By night, she writes. As you might imagine, this leaves little time for sleep.

You can find info about her short stories and novels on her website:
www.sarinadorie.com, on Facebook, on Twitter @sarinadorie, and on  Google+ +SarinaDorie.

Rebecca Amodeo

Rebecca Amodeo lives in Oregon. She writes and speaks on long-term survivorship and ending the stigma against victims and survivors of abuse. Rebecca volunteers, teaches yoga, and practices martial arts as part of her own continued healing. Rebecca can also be found roaming the coast in Henry, her 1969 VW campmobile, with a mug of tea and a chocolate bar or two.Find out more on her website, on Facbook, on Twitter @BeccaAmodeo, and on Instagram @dancebeccadance.

Past Chairs of the Mid-Valley Chapter

Connect with the Chapter

We think writers are awesome!

Volunteer with the Chapter

Are you a local writer and want to be more involved with the Mid-Valley Chapter? Volunteer!

Here are some ways volunteers help us:

  • Pick up snacks for monthly meetings
  • Prep Member Announcements for publishing on website
  • Organize events, workshops and meetings

How would you like to be involved? Get in touch and let us know how you’d like help.

Click here for other volunteer opportunities at Willamette Writers.

Chapter Blog Posts and Updates

ITALY CALLS now available from Eugene Author C. Edwin Fender

Lorenzo Costa is content with his life in Oregon.  That life is turned upside down when the grandfather he doesn’t know calls him to come to Italy to take over his multi-billion Euro company.  While enroute, he unknowingly smuggles data for arms traffickers.  The journey to find his Italian roots and decide whether or not to take over the business leads to romance and an adventure-laced trip through Italy. Available Now Now available at Tsunami Books in Eugene. Find out more at http://fenderink.com/ About the Author C. Edwin (Ed) Fender was a member of The Wesleyan Writers, graduating from Kansas Wesleyan University in 1968 with a BA in Sociology.   After post-graduate studies at the Instituto Tecnologico in Monterrey, Mexico and three years of worldwide travel as an employee of the American Red Cross (including 18 months in Vietnam during 1970-1971), Ed entered Denver University Graduate School of Social Work. In 1974, two wondrous events occurred in Ed’s life.  Maureen Walsh, a fellow student in the GSSW, accepted his proposal of marriage. They were married in April, 1975 at the DU campus chapel….. oh right, and he got his Masters Degree in Social Work (MSW).   He is working on a PHD at Sam Houston Institute of Technology.  After leaving the employment of the Red Cross in Des Moines, Iowa in 1981, Ed switched to insurance agent, then to operations manager for a microbiology company.   Cold Iowa winters convinced the family (which now included two young children) to permanently relocate to Eugene, Oregon as a result of an earlier visit to friends living there.  Ed continues to volunteer with the Red Cross and received his “40 year” pin in 2009!

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THE BOY WHO PAINTED FIRE Available Now from Eugene Author JS Bird

Does art have the power to transform? Jon Baxter has big dreams. Make cool art, meet hot girls, dive a Porsche. His reality is a million miles away – beer guzzling father, naive mother, house a shambles and the little town a dead end. Not to mention the fact that he’s just been arrested – again. Yet, somehow, Jon stumbles upon one chance at a way out, one chance at his dream of being an artist. Unfortunately, Jon is his own worst enemy, and he continues to dig himself deeper and deeper into a hole. He resists and fights his teachers at every turn. He hates the art school persona, particularly Cindy—that hippie girl who everyone says is so “talented.” The only thing Jon does like about college is Katerina, a struggling student and former stripper with more baggage than Southwest Air. As Jon flirts with disaster, he chances upon a unique and powerful professor who rattles Jon to his very core. Now armed with the weapons of paintbrush and fire, Jon must enter the labyrinth of his own soul. Only within this crucible of paint and heat lives the potential for transformation and powerful artistic expression — if Jon can summon the courage to see it through. Based on the Hero Journey motif, The Boy Who Painted Fire is the story of a misguided young man’s search for direction and a tender, convincing and hilarious love story. It provides anyone who has explored their own creativity, or enjoys the arts, a fun, quirky, irreverent, yet moving and transformative reading experience. It is a journey of struggle, inspiration and redemption, with a host of memorable characters, all of whom change Jon in some way, as he struggles with art, love, truth, and ultimately, his own soul. Reviews for The Boy Who Painted Fire All of Jon’s edges are rough, but he has a wry wit and a keen eye for revealing details in the people and places around him, expressed with a poet’s eye for color and mood as well as a stand-up comic’s knack for punch lines… Anybody who has ever been in a new love relationship, with all its glories and unexpected blowbacks, will smile, shake their heads, laugh, and, yes, shed a tear or two… a terrific story, well told. — Rick Sterry, author of Far Out: A Life on the Edge If you get to the second chapter, you will not put this book down until you savor the last moment. Bird’s development of character and human psyche and relationships moved to a class with D.H. Lawrence and his descriptive prose rivals James Lee Burke. Bird… has become our teacher and he knows our quest. — Rick Williams, author of Visual Communication: Integrating Media, Art and Science The Boy Who Painted Fire is a poignant and insightful… Part coming-of-age story, part philosophy of art, author JS Bird weaves together these two aspects with a near seamless ease that enlightens as it entertains. This novel taught me…

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Announcing the Mid-Valley Author Celebration and Reading in June

Join us as we celebrate our members’ publishing successes for the year! This is our chance to mingle, enjoy some light refreshments, and hear from eight Willamette Writers members, who will read from their recently published works. Event: Thursday, 5 June, 2014, from 7-9:00 pm at Tsunami Books Suggested donation: One book for kids or a small cash donation to the Books for Kids program Open to public   Interested in being a reader? Spots to read at the Mid-Valley Author Celebration and Reading are open to Willamette Writers members. We’d love to have live music at the event if any of our members would like to show off their musical talents! Email us if you’re interested. Reading Submission Guidelines Readers must have a current Willamette Writers membership in good standing. The goal is to feature our members’ publishing successes.  How to tell if your work qualifies: It has an ISBN (novel, non-fiction, poetry, short story collections); or was published in a journal or magazine of note. Your self-published or e-book-only publication is permissible if is has an ISBN/AISN and is sold on major online publishing venues. It is not a blog post or forum post (especially fan fiction). Many ezines, chapbooks, and online venues also do not qualify as officially published. Have a question or unsure whether your work qualifies? Don’t hesitate to ask. As we hope to make this an annual event that celebrates our members’ most recent achievements, we ask that works submitted have been published in the past three years. This is an event open to the public of all ages, so please ensure pieces for submission are appropriate for ages 12 and up (that is, approximately PG-13). Submission pieces must be no more than 7-minutes worth of reading. (Estimate approximately 2 minutes per page for prose.) Please submit the following via email as pdf attachments to midvalley@willamettewriters.com : Your name, email, and phone number A short author bio Your submission piece of approximately 3-4 pages, double-spaced, 12 PT Times New Roman (or equivalent) Submissions are due by 11:59 p.m. 9 May 2014. Readers will be announced on 15 May 2014  

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2014 CSWS Northwest Women Writers Symposium 1-3 May

PEN/Faulkner Award Winner Karen Joy Fowler to headline the 2014 CSWS Northwest Women Writers Symposium: “Family, Animal, Story” May 1 – 3 You’re invited to the third annual CSWS Northwest Women Writer’s Symposium — “Family, Animal, Story” — a 3-day symposium on women writers held on the UO campus and at the downtown Eugene Public Library (10th & Olive). “Family, Animal, Story” will feature a Thursday evening panel discussion focused on New York Times–bestselling novelist Karen Joy Fowler’s latest novel, We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves; a Friday evening reading & booksigning with Karen Joy Fowler; and a full day on Saturday including two morning panels and four afternoon workshops. Fowler is the winner of the 2014 PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction for We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves, which has opened up new ways of talking about family dynamics and the ethics of animal research. The novel is narrated by a young woman who was raised until age five with a chimpanzee as her sister.. Panels and workshops are FREE & open to the public. Starting April 12 (please do not call sooner!), you must pre-register for limited spaces in Saturday afternoon workshops by calling Eugene Public Library at:  541-682-5450 (Press 2). The Northwest Women Writers Symposium is the yearly centerpiece of the Women Writers Project at the Center for the Study of Women and Society at University of Oregon. Other sponsors for this event include the Eugene Public Library, Oregon Humanities Center, UO Department of English, UO Department of Women’s and Gender Studies, UO Libraries, and the UO School of Journalism and Communication. Find out more here. NW Women Writer’s Symposium: Panels and Workshops Saturday, May 3, 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m., Downtown Eugene Public Library, 10th & Olive Print Your Book  Tuesday, May 6, 6:00 p.m., Sheldon Branch of Eugene Public Library, 1566 Coburg Road Tuesday, May 13, 6:00 p.m., Bethel Branch of Eugene Public Library, 1990 Echo Hollow Road Blogging: Next Steps Saturday, May 10, 10:00 a.m., Downtown Eugene Public Library, 10th & Olive Windfall Reading: John Yau Tuesday, May 20, 5:30 p.m., Downtown Eugene Public Library, 10th & Olive Writer Lynn Ash Wednesday, May 21, 6:00 p.m., Downtown Eugene Public Library, 10th & Olive Tween Scene Book Group Thursday, May 29, 4:00 p.m., Downtown Eugene Public Library, 10th & Olive Teen Book Group Thursday, May 29, 4:00 p.m., Downtown Eugene Public Library, 10th & Olive Find out more here.

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Free Literary Events at Eugene Public Library, April 2014

All events are free and open to the public. More information: 541-682-5450 or www.eugene-or.gov/library Roaring ’20s Party Friday, April 4, 5:30 p.m., Downtown Eugene Public Library, 10th & Olive Wind up The Big Read of The Great Gatsby with a bang! Come to a Roaring ’20s Party featuring live music and dancing with the Calamity Jazz Band. Costumes welcome! The Downtown Library stays open until 8:00 p.m. on the First Friday of each month Party tunes of the 1920s cover many moods: romantic, bouncy, optimistic, sweet, and sentimental. The Charleston, foxtrot, one-step, two-step, waltz, East Coast swing, turkey trot, and the cakewalk are just a few of the dances heard from the speakeasies to the grand ballrooms of the era. Led by trumpeter Vicki Cox, Calamity Jazz Band includes Bill Kick (trombone), Jeff Bryant (reeds), Jon Brand (tuba and stringed bass), Cork Larsen (banjo), John Muellner (percussion), and Meg Graf (piano). This free event completes The Big Read: a community celebration of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s novel The Great Gatsby. The Big Read is a program of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with Arts Midwest, co-sponsored locally by Eugene Public Library, Springfield Public Library, Oregon Contemporary Theatre, Friends of Eugene Public Library, and Eugene Public Library Foundation. Diane Hammond: Orcas in Captivity Saturday, April 5, 3:00 p.m., Downtown Eugene Public Library, 10th & Olive Diane Hammond was press secretary for the most famous killer whale of all time: Keiko, the star of the hit movie Free Willy and the only captive orca ever to be returned to the wild. In an illustrated talk, she will tell stories of her days working with Keiko, discuss the issues surrounding orcas in captivity, and share how this inspired her latest novel, Friday’s Harbor. Killer whales and the ethics of orca captivity have been in the news recently due to CNN’s airing of Blackfish, a documentary about an orca that killed a trainer at SeaWorld Orlando in 2010. Hammond is the author of five novels, including the bestselling Hannah’s Dream. Handmade Books Tuesday, April 8, 6:00 p.m., Sheldon Branch of Eugene Public Library, 1566 Coburg Road Tuesday, April 15, 6:00 p.m., Bethel Branch of Eugene Public Library, 1990 Echo Hollow Road Adults: join artist Amanda Puetz to learn how to make accordion books. This versatile structure can be adapted for many uses: photo albums, sketch books, pop-up books, a book of pockets to store cards, and more. In addition to teaching construction skills, Puetz will share bookmaking resources from Eugene Public Library and display finished handmade books. ANNUAL BOOK SALE FUNDRAISER – Friends of Eugene Public Library Saturday, April 12, 9:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m., and Sunday, April 13, 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Lane Events Center (Lane County Fairgrounds), Eugene The Annual Friends of Eugene Public Library Book Sale will be held Saturday, April 12, 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., and Sunday, April 13, 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., at Lane Events Center (Lane County Fairgrounds) Performance Hall. Proceeds from this…

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THE SPIRIT WRITINGS by Lisa Borja Now Available

THE SPIRIT WRITINGS is a new historical fiction series by Lisa Borja. The stories follow the adventures and romance of Ava Godfrey, once lonely and ever-reluctant psychic. Now available for Kindle are: Book 1: Beyond Pleasant End Book 2: Say Yes Book 3: Remember Visit www.TheSpiritWritings.com for book synopses, special offers, author information, and fun extras! Through April 4, 2014, enter to win free Kindle downloads of the series.

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Mary E. Lowd Nominated for 2013 Ursa Major Awards

Mary E. Lowd’s novel Otters In Space 2: Jupiter, Deadly and two of her short stories made it to the final ballot for the 2013 Ursa Major Awards. The Ursa Major Awards are designed to reward excellence in the realm of anthropomorphic arts and literature. They’re judged by a popular vote, and anyone is allowed to participate. To vote, go to the Ursa Major Awards website and register with an email address. Mary’s nominated works are: Best Novel: Otters In Space 2: Jupiter, Deadly Best Short Fiction: Fox in the Hen House Best Short Fiction: In a Cat’s Eyes All three titles were published by FurPlanet. The short stories originally appeared in Dancing in the Moonlight: Rainfurrest 2013 Charity Anthology.

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A-New Poetry Series at DIVA Eugene Features Ce Rosenow, Standard Schaefer & Maryrose Larkin, Apr. 5

DIVA’s “A New Poetry” series features Eugene poet Ce Rosenow and Portland poets Standard Schaefer and Maryrose Larkin in a presentation of their work at 7:30 p.m., Sat., Apr. 5, at the DIVA Gallery, 280 W. Broadway, Eugene, OR. Donations welcome. Ce Rosenow’s books and chapbooks include The Backs of Angels, Even If, North Lake, Pacific, A Year Longer, and Spectral Forms. She is one of 8 authors in Beyond Within: A Collection of Rengay, one of 4 authors in The Color of Water edited by Carolyn Hall, and co-editor of The Next One Thousand Years, The Selected Poems of Cid Corman with Bob Arnold. She is also the former President of the Haiku Society of America, former co-editor of Northwest Literary Forum and Portlandia Review of Books, and the publisher of Mountains and Rivers Press. Standard Schaefer is a poet, essayist, and fiction writer. His first book of poetry, Nova, was selected for the 1999 National Poetry Series and published by Sun & Moon Books. His second book, Water & Power, was published by Agincourt in 2005. Desert Notebook was published in Italy and the US in 2008 in limited editions. His poetry has been translated into Italian and anthologized internationally, most recently in Nuova Poesia Americana (Mondadori, 2005) as well as in Vol. 5 of The PIP Anthology of World Poetry of the 20th Century (Los Angeles: Green Integer, 2005). He has co-edited several literary and arts journals including Ribot, New Review of Literature, Rhizome and Or. His work has appeared in journals such as Carolina Quarterly, New American Poetry, Aufgabe, and Slope. He has taught writing and literature at Otis College of Art (Los Angeles) and California College of the Arts (San Francisco). His latest book of poems is The Notebook of False Purgatories (Chax Books 2013). He lives in Portland with his wife and daughter. Maryrose Larkin lives in Portland, where she works as a freelance researcher. She is the author of Inverse (nine muses books, 2006), Whimsy Daybook 2007 (FLASH+CARD, 2006), The Book of Ocean (i.e. press, 2007), DARC (FLASH+CARD, 2009), The name of this intersection is frost (Shearsman Books, 2010), Marrowing (Airfoil, 2010) and The Identification of Ghosts (Chax, 2013). Maryrose was a founder of Spare Room, a Portland-based writing collective, and is co-editor, with Sarah Mangold, of FLASH+CARD, a chapbook and ephemera poetry press. Maryrose received her MFA from Bard College’s Milton Avery Graduate School of Art. She keeps her friends close and her muses closer. Learn more about the Downtown Initiative For The Visual Arts (DIVA Center) at divacenter.org or call 541.344.3482.

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Available Now: HOME SWEET ROAD by Anthony St. Clair

Trust & Travel Collide in Ireland While living in Ireland in 2000, Eugene author Anthony St. Clair spent a few days in the small town of Clifden. Now his travels combine with a fascinating cast of complex characters and an epic storyline in a new novella. Home Sweet Road is the second Rucksack Universe book. “At its heart, Home Sweet Road is about trust,” says St. Clair. “It’s about learning to trust the right people, and what to do when you make a mistake and trust the wrong people. Above all, this is a story about learning to trust yourself.” About the Book As falls Ireland, so falls the world. In Home Sweet Road, an ordinary woman hides extraordinary secrets from two men who are not what they seem—but neither is she. Aisling’s grandmother was the most famous Awen of Ireland, but Aisling never knew that until she returned home from her travels, said her good-byes over the old protector’s grave, and learned from Jake Connemara that she was now Awen. No one has yet tried to steal the three relics under her protection, which combined are said to give the possessor the power to control the world. But when two strange backpackers arrive in Clifden, Aisling’s life and the fate of world rest on one moment. Tiran and Jay became friends the moment they started talking on the bus to Clifden, but when they meet Aisling, rivalry threatens that new friendship. Jake, bartender at The Salt and Crane, tells Aisling a long-lost, ancient, more powerful relic is rumored to have been stolen from The Blast Memorial—the same day Jay and Tiran were there. The time of Aisling’s test has come. If she fails, Ireland falls. And if Ireland falls, one of these men will bring the world to a terrible fate. “Anthony’s got an amazing sense of the epic,” says one fan. “Each of the stories in the Rucksack Universe keeps building on the groundwork that came before. There’s a lot of long play being worked out through the stories and I just can’t wait to see how it all weaves together and falls into place.” The Rucksack Universe is the globetrotter’s exciting fantasy world of wit, adventure and beer. Fans call the series “buoyant with a unique humor, twist and focus on international travel,” and “perfect for fans of Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman.” Available Now Home Sweet Road is available worldwide as a trade paperback. E-book available exclusively through Amazon and will be released in all e-book formats and stores in May: Amazon.com Barnes & Noble Goodreads More stores & info The next Rucksack Universe book, the novel Forever the Road, will be published in 2014. It builds on The Martini of Destiny and Home Sweet Road. Stores & more available at the official Home Sweet Road webpage » About Anthony St. Clair Live the world! 
Globetrotter, homebrewer and writer Anthony St. Clair has walked with hairy coos in the Scottish Highlands, choked on seafood in Australia,…

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Free Literary Events at Eugene Public Library, March 2014

All events are free and open to the public. More information: 541-682-5450 or www.eugene-or.gov/library THE BIG READ 2014: THE GREAT GATSBY These events are part of The Big Read: a Eugene/Springfield community celebration of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s novel The Great Gatsby. The Big Read is a program of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with Arts Midwest, co-sponsored locally by Eugene Public Library, Springfield Public Library, and Oregon Contemporary Theatre. For a complete calendar of Big Read events, visit www.eugene-or.gov/library or call Eugene Public Library at 541-682-5450. Big Read Book Groups Take your pick! The Big Read project encourages everyone in Eugene/Springfield to read and talk about The Great Gatsby this month. Share your views and hear your neighbors’ at drop-in book groups at Eugene Public Library: Bethel Branch, Saturday, March 1, 1:00 p.m. or Wednesday, March 19, 3:00 p.m. Sheldon Branch, Wednesday, March 12, 3:00 p.m. or Saturday, March 22, 11:00 a.m. Downtown Library, Sunday, March 23, 2:00 p.m. Or join in the discussion at Springfield Public Library on Monday, March 17, 6:00 p.m. in English, or Tuesday, March 18, 6:00 p.m. in Spanish. Springfield Public Library will also hold a book group about another Fitzgerald classic, This Side of Paradise, on Tuesday, March 4, 10:30 a.m. The Big Read will also hold an ongoing online book group at the Eugene Public Library website: www.eugene-or.gov/library. Additionally, youth are invited to the Downtown Eugene Public Library’s Teen Book Group or Tween Scene Book Group on Thursday, March 27, 4:00 p.m.; teens will read The Great Gatsby and tweens, Dave at Night. The Big Read Kick-Off First Friday, March 7, theater 5:00 p.m., live music 6:00 p.m. Downtown Eugene Public Library, 10th & Olive At 5:00 p.m., Debra Conner performs Muse to Madness, a dramatic one-woman show about the life of Zelda Fitzgerald, from her glory to her disintegration. Zelda and her husband, writer F. Scott Fitzgerald, were the golden couple of the 1920s. Their brilliance and excesses defined the age—and like the decade itself, their brief, tempestuous lives ended in calamity. America’s first flapper and the model for Scott’s fictional heroines, Zelda spent much of her life after age 30 hospitalized for schizophrenia, ultimately perishing in a fire at age 48. A writer and teacher as well as a performer Debra Conner began portraying Emily Dickinson in 1997, thanks to a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts. Since then, she has also performed as author Margaret Mitchell and Civil War surgeon Dr. Mary Walker. At 6:00 p.m., enjoy a high-energy Jazz Age concert by the Carl Woideck Quartet, featuring 1920s favorites including “Sweet Georgia Brown,” “Oh, Lady Be Good!,” “Bye Bye Blackbird,” and “Tea for Two.” The Quartet is comprised of Carl Woideck (saxophone), Tony Glausi (trumpet), Torrey Newhart (keyboard), and Sean Peterson (bass). The Downtown Library stays open until 8:00 p.m. on the First Friday of each month. The Crack Up: Fitzgerald’s Last Years Saturday, March 8, 3:00 p.m., Downtown Eugene Public Library, 10th &…

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