Joseph Bernt

Joseph Bernt

The Cannon Beach Library will open on Saturdays from noon to 4 p.m. for limited browsing on a first-come, first-served basis for library card holders and visitors. Only two people may enter the library at the same time and may browse no longer than 10 minutes during each visit.

Anyone entering the library must wear a mask, use available hand sanitizer, provide contact information, and cooperate with staff. All items removed from shelves will be placed in marked boxes and quarantined before being re-shelved.

The used book room is open for purchases. However, the children’s room, interlibrary loan services and public computers and printers are not available.

The library’s door-side pickup service remains available on Mondays and Wednesdays from noon to 4 p.m. Use the online catalog on the library web site to identify the books you want to check out and let library volunteers know online or by telephone what you want to pick up.

For additional information about limited browsing or door-side pickup services see Cannon Beach Library.org.

The World of Haystack Rock Lecture Series will sponsor “Tidal Flats, Victorian Prudes, and Going to the Moon: What We Can Learn from Sandpipers,” a lecture by Janet Essley, Wednesday, November 11, at 7 p.m. This lecture will be presented virtually on Facebook Live @ Friends of Haystack.

Essley—a painter, muralist and teaching artist—who lives in White Salmon, Washington, directly across the Columbia from Hood River, Oregon, often focuses her art on environmental issues.

Recently this interest has led to her work on a collaborative project, “The Cultural Cartography of Red Knots,” which illustrates the migration of Red Knot Sandpipers along the Pacific Flyway between southwestern Mexico and arctic breeding areas on Wrangel Island and in northwestern Alaska. Red Knots rest midway on this flight at Grays Harbor or Wallapa Bay, Washington.

On Wednesday, November 18, Phyllis Bernt will lead members of Cannon Beach Reads in a discussion of “My Antonia,” Willa Cather’s classic novel of pioneer life in Nebraska before World War I. It’s a story of diverse cultures and people adjusting to opportunities, limitations and disappointments of accepting less than satisfactory lives.

Pacific Northwest author Karl Marlantes, a graduate of Seaside High School and author of two bestsellers that reflect his experience as a Marine platoon leader in Vietnam—”Matterhorn: A Novel of the Vietnam War” and “What It Is Like to Go to War”—will discuss “Deep River,” his most recent novel  about Finnish immigrants and labor organizing in a Columbia River logging community early in the twentieth century.

Publication of “Deep River” expands the literature of the Pacific Northwest well beyond such romantic, mythic or historical fiction as Don Berry’s “Trask,” Brian Doyle’s “Mink River,” David James Duncan’s “The River Why,” Molly Gloss’ “The Jump-Off Creek” and Ken Kesey’s “Sometimes a Great Notion.”

Marlantes’ presentation is sponsored by the Northwest Author Speakers Series via Facebook Live, Saturday, November 28, at 2 p.m.

Not long ago, western wildfires were pumping smoke into our forested paradise, making breathing difficult for many on the North Oregon Coast. We were fortunate that the fires kept their distance from most of the Oregon Coast.

Even so, the extent of this fall’s fires across the West, combined with what was a dry, warm summer, had me thinking about how dry the spruce surrounding my neighborhood became until the rain fell and temperatures dropped  earlier this month.

So, when I looked over new books at the library to review, “Trees in Trouble: Wildfires, Infestations, and Climate Change” by Portland author Daniel Mathews caught my attention.

Reading Mathews’ history and analysis of the manner in which pines growing mostly in dry regions of the West were accumulating fuel, dying from various pine beetle attacks and blister rust and experiencing declining cone production in the face of warmer and drier conditions hardly reduced my angst.

At least not until Mathews made a passing comment about the coastal northwest on the west side of the Cascade range—exactly where I live—having little reason to worry. Sitka spruce and Douglas fir are not of concern to Mathews.

For this reason, he chooses to concentrate on ponderosa pine, sugar pine, lodgepole pine, western white pine, whitebark pine, Jeffrey pine, piñon pine, Great Basin Bristlecone pine, Sequoia and whitebark pine east of the Cascade range and north and east of the Sierra Nevada range.

Matthews’ major prediction for pine forests is that they require human intervention to clear space between trees, to develop disease- and insect-resistant plantings, to select plantings more tolerant to colder and drier climates so that they can thrive in more extreme temperatures as they continue moving up and north or lower and south.

Matthews advocates a practical approach to protecting existing forests. Although advocating burning undergrowth and dead underbrush, he also recognizes that, in many cases, burning should have occurred decades ago before underbrush had grown into the crowns of desirable trees.

He also calls for modifying codes so more fire-resistant materials are required on building exteriors and greater space is added between structures and vegetation.

Matthews makes one prediction about future forests: there will be far fewer trees and far less carbon released on the planet than was the case in the twentieth century.

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