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Volunteers clear Bend golf course for big cross country meet


The USATF Cross Country National Championships are just around the corner in Bend, but all the recent snow that has yet to melt is proving difficult to clear off the course.

Several volunteers were busy Saturday clearing the hard-packed snow from the River’s Edge Golf Course, a chore that needs to be done by next weekend – and they can use all the help they can get.

Several volunteers showed up Saturday between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. to help Visit Bend clear the snow from two kilometers of race course.

“It feels like there is a lot of snow to clear — and we knew that, so that’s why we went the route we did,” Visit Bend Sales and Sports Director-Hank Therien said. “We’ll get it all done and have an incredible event through these snow ‘hallways’ that we are creating right now.”

Therien said Visit Bend is donating $20 to local nonprofits for every volunteer who comes out to help. Instead of paying for professional snow removal, they decided to make it a community event.

“The people that were here are all hard workers,” said volunteer Mike Dugan. “There is a little bit of ice, but once you go through that, you can get it done.”

The consistency of the snow also proved to be another challenge. Snowblowers cannot get through the snow’s density, so volunteers have to do it by hand.

“The turf is pretty fragile, so bringing out a big front loader or tractor is just going to rip up the golf course,” Therien said.

Visit Bend said anyone is welcome to come out and help. Two more shifts will take place Sunday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and throughout early next week, the course will be cleared of the remaining snow.

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