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Giving Thanks: People and things in Bend that make life bearable 

Just a few things in Bend that I'm thankful for.

Like many Americans, I think Thanksgiving is our nation’s best holiday. It’s a day devoted to being with friends and family and giving thanks for what we have and what has made our lives better.

This year, I’m thankful for:

Middle School Kids: The middle schooler in my family was able to program my new cell phone with all sorts of features during the five-minute ride from her school to her house. Later, she set me up with a great new, and original, ring tone. Next I’ll ask her to fix my laptop and start ghostwriting this blog. Modern kids are pretty cool.

Customer service: Now here’s a lost art by in large but thankfully Bend has a few businesses that realize the benefit of good customer service. They know that treating customers well translates to loyalty and repeat business. My local favs for customer service include: Les Schwab, Footzone-Bend, Trader Joe’s, Wild Bird Unlimited, The Pine Tavern, the Pilot Butte Drive-in (PBDI), the Seventh Street Brew House in Redmond, and Rockin’ Daves.

Beer: Bend is blessed with so many good breweries, brewers and brewpubs. And the best thing is they’re all different, unique.

Trails: Thanks primarily to the Central Oregon Trail Alliance (COTA), we have an incredible trail system that only keeps getting better. Is Bend mountain bike heaven? It could very well be.

All-around skiing: Few places in the world have such a good combination of alpine, cross-country and backcountry skiing close to town.

Big Fat Tour: This is a great event that, over three days, captures what makes Central Oregon mountain biking so good and so varied.

Cyclocross National Championships: more proof that Bend is an ideal place for big time individual sports competitions.

Dirty Half: What every footrace should be like-challenging and fun.

Easy to navigate websites: I rejoice every time I land on a site that eschews Flash Media for straight ahead, no BS information. For example,

NeighborImpact: Thankfully we have a dedicated group of public servants who are looking out for the needs of the thousands of people who otherwise would go hungry in the tri-county area.


Happy Thanksgiving.

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