Basketball and the Grand Staircase…

We’ve always said that the Grand Staircase makes the perfect place for photos of every kind.  In honor of the great seasons that both EOU’s men’s and women’s basketball teams are having, here is a photo of the 1983/84 men’s team taken on the View Terrace.

Courtesy EOU Pierce Library

The Grand Staircase at Eastern Oregon University was designed by Oregon architect John Bennes and completed in 1929.  Sadly, it has deteriorated over the decades and was closed to public use in 2004.

The staircase is currently included on Restore Oregon’s Most Endangered Places List.  In November of 2015 it was determined that the staircase was too far deteriorated for restoration to be a viable option, however efforts are underway to fund reconstruction.

We believe that the Grand Staircase has great potential as a cultural heritage tourism attraction and, as a result, could help boost the economy of La Grande and eastern Oregon.  Even now, deteriorating and no longer opened to the public, it is an architectural treasure worth seeing.  Reconstructed it could offer even more.

We started this blog and the accompanying Facebook page to raise awareness of the Grand Staircase and its architectural significance, post photographs and information of historical interest about the staircase, provide updates on the efforts to save our beloved “college steps” and share the stories and memories of those who love the staircase as much as we do.

To see a pictorial history of the staircase please visit our About page.

If you have any questions or have Grand Staircase memories, stories, or photos you would like to share please contact us at savethegrandstaircase@gmail.com.

 

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterest

Sit and ponder, rest and dream, visit with me in between

We recently came across some photos of the Grand Staircase that we hadn’t seen before.  This one (courtesy of the EOU Pierce Library) was taken in 1986 and shows Tina (left) and Jeff (right) conversing while sitting on the top railing of the staircase.

With a panoramic view of the Grande Ronde Valley in front of them and the hallowed halls of Inlow behind them, what do you think they were talking about?

Sit and ponder

Baluster smallBaluster smallBaluster small

The Grand Staircase at Eastern Oregon University was designed by Oregon architect John Bennes and completed in 1929.  Sadly, it has deteriorated over the decades and was closed to public use in 2004.

The staircase is currently included on Restore Oregon’s Most Endangered Places List.  In November of 2015 it was determined that the staircase was too far deteriorated for restoration to be a viable option, however efforts are underway to fund reconstruction.

We started this blog and the accompanying Facebook page to raise awareness of the Grand Staircase and its architectural significance, post photographs and information of historical interest about the staircase, and share the stories and memories of those who love the staircase as much as we do.

To see a pictorial history of the staircase please visit our About page.

If you have any questions or have Grand Staircase memories, stories, or photos you would like to share please contact us at savethegrandstaircase@gmail.com.

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterest

The new view…

In several of our previous posts we’ve mentioned the wonderful view you can see from the top of the Grand Staircase.  For those who are not fortunate enough to live in La Grande and be able to see the view in person, the webcam on the Northside of Inlow Hall allows folks to see it from wherever they are.

Recently the webcam underwent some changes – the pictures are enhanced, the colors are more brilliant.  Caution:  if you grew up in La Grande and/or lived there at one time and have since moved away clicking on the link can bring on pangs of homesickness.

Below are some of our favorite shots from the last few weeks.

red roofs

new view 2

new view 3

new view 6

new view 7

Baluster smallBaluster smallBaluster small

The Grand Staircase at Eastern Oregon University was designed by Oregon architect John Bennes and completed in 1929.  Sadly, it has deteriorated over the decades and was closed to public use in 2004.

In November of 2014 it was chosen for inclusion on Restore Oregon’s Most Endangered Places List.

We started this blog and the accompanying Facebook page that same month.  Our intent is to raise awareness of the Grand Staircase and its architectural significance, post photographs and information of historical interest about the staircase, and share the stories and memories of those who love the staircase as much as we do.

To see a pictorial history of the staircase please visit our About page.

If you have any questions or have Grand Staircase memories, stories, or photos you would like to share please contact us at savethegrandstaircase@gmail.com.

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterest

Starlit Stairway…

Who out there remembers Starlit Stairway – Spokane, Washington’s local talent show?  Sponsored by the Boyle Fuel Company, it was broadcast on Saturday nights from 1953 – 1973 and was the longest-running live-TV talent program in the country.   First prize was $25, but no one was ever walked away a loser because every contestant received a certificate inscribed with their name and the right to say that they had been on TV.

And of course, how can we forget the Boyle Fuel twins, who week after week, month after month, year after year, sang the Boyle Fuel jingle…

For every heating problem,
Be your furnace old or new,
Just call the Boyle Fuel Company,
And they’ll solve them all for you.

And, then, in perfect harmony implanted the Boyle Fuel phone number in our memory banks to remain there forever.

When you need coal or oil, call Boyle
Fairfax 8-1521
Fairfax 8-1521

Boyle Fuel twins

The Boyle Fuel Twins

Here is where we seamlessly turn this into a post about the Grand Staircase.

Next week marks the peak of the Perseid meteor shower.  The granddaddy of meteor showers, NASA estimates that on the nights of August 12 and 13, the Perseids will produce up to 100 meteors per hour, visible in the northeastern sky, streaking by at 37 miles per second.  Cool.

The photo below shows what the night sky looks like from the View Terrace at the top of the Grand Staircase on a “regular” night.  Now imagine it with a meteor every minute!

Night Sky

Photo – EOU Webcam 7/21/15 10:40 pm

Although the View Terrace has been resurfaced, as we’ve mentioned before the top of the staircase is closed off – barricaded for safety reason.  If you want to see the Perseids this year, there are many other wonderful places in Union County (or wherever else you might be in the northern hemisphere) to do so.

That being said, when the Grand Staircase is restored, can you imagine a better place to watch shooting stars?  La Grande’s own Starlit Stairway!!

 

To read more about the staircase and why it needs saving go to our About page here.

If you have any questions or have Grand Staircase memories, stories, or photos you would like to share please contact us at savethegrandstaircase@gmail.com.

 

 

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterest

A cotton candy sky…

Just in time for the Union County Fair, the view from the top of the Grand Staircase gives us a cotton candy sky!

Cotton candy sky

Photo – EOU Web Cam – 7/27/15 11:30 am

 

We think this sky deserves a blue ribbon!

 

To read about the staircase and why it needs saving go to our About page here.

If you have any questions or have Grand Staircase memories, stories, or photos you would like to share please contact us at savethegrandstaircase@gmail.com.

 

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterest

The View Terrace

One of the many wonderful features of the Grand Staircase is the View Terrace at top.  At one time the View Terrace was used for many things…

Studying…

 Studying

Visiting…

Visiting

Learning…

Learning

However now, even though the terrace was resurfaced in recent years, missing balustrades and balusters on the staircase (not to mention barricades closing the steps to public use) keep the terrace from being the gathering place it once was.

 All photos in this post courtesy of EOU Pierce Library.  

To read more about the staircase and why it needs saving go to our About page here.

If you have any questions or have Grand Staircase memories, stories, or photos you would like to share please contact us at savethegrandstaircase@gmail.com.

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterest