Emotional Weather Report

By Hilary Berg, OWP Editor

Anyone seen summer? It is already July, with the longest day of the year now behind us, and it appears Oregon is still stuck in spring.

Never have I gazed at a summertime swimming pool and shivered at the thought of entering its waters, until now.

When August arrives and temperatures reach triple digits, I know I'll regret this hankering for heat. But at this point, I'll even take a helping of humidity - never thought I'd ever write those words.

This need for sunny skies and warmer temps is not just about my desire for four distinct seasons; more importantly, it's about the vines and the livelihoods surrounding them.

Like teenagers who obsessively check Facebook, grape growers regularly review the forecast, looking for cues from Mother Nature.

As with every vintage, no one quite knows what her mood is and what it will bring. Oregon's vintners are concerned but most seem confident the weather will heat up enough for the plants to catch up. Until then, it's a wait-and-see situation.

Whether or not she wishes to cooperate, summer must go on - and so must the show. Anyone up for some live music?

Since 2007, July has focused on entertainment. Instead of highlighting one of the many talented artists in wine country, this year's cover story takes you to Portland, currently one of the nation's hottest music scenes.

Matt Brown balances his time between his own record label, Bladen County, and a new bar venture with Tommy Habetz and Nick Wood of the popular Bunk Sandwiches.

Theodora Karastazas, a new contributor to OWP, uncovers Brown's enthusiasm for both vinyl and vino.

Accompanying the main feature is a live music calendar covering Oregon's wineries, tasting rooms and wine shops that host a variety of talented musicians all summer long.

Besides music, July has politics, chemistry, cheesemongers, food carts, a jump across the river to Lyle, Wash., and so much more.

With that I encourage you to read up and, definitely, rock on. (No sun required).

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