Eight Benefits Available to U of O Students (You May Not Know About)

There’s no shortage to the excellent benefits and resources U of O has to offer its students: terrific career services department, state of the art facilities, an unparalleled staff, the Ducks (go Ducks!). Still, you may be unaware of some of these less obvious resources.

Zipcar Student Rates

Zipcar has partnered up with University of Oregon to provide affordable prices to the student population, allowing you to join for only $15. Head to our Zipcar post for more info!

LTD Rides for Free

That’s right, flash your student ID badge and you can ride any LTD bus for free. Click here for info regarding their routes and time tables.

Discounted Rates for Enterprise Car Share

Not only is the one-time $20 fee waived if you’re a student, your annual membership is a discounted $35! Visit Enterprise’s Car Share page for a map of available cars and pick up locations.

10% off Whole Foods Purchase

Did you know that as a student you can save 10% of your entire purchase every Tuesday throughout the academic year at Whole Foods? Not a deal to miss!

Deals on Mattresses from American Mattress Manufacturing

A new mattress can be a costly endeavor; American Mattress Manufacturing helps by offering discounts on mattresses and full sets.

Save Money on Software and Hardware

Most major software and tech companies—Adobe, Apple, Autocad, Microsoft—will offer student discounts on software and hardware; in some cases even allow students to use software for free.

Expand Your Mind Without Paying A Cent

Both the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art and the Museum of Natural & Cultural History are free to students! Just bring your student ID with you and you’re good to go!

Get Your Swing on for Less

Like others on this list, Laurelwood Golf Course offers discounted rates to University of Oregon students!

Who knew a student ID could save you so much money? Be sure to follow our blog for the latest in tips and hacks for student living in Eugene!

Seven Ways to Feel Like You’re Getting Away (Without Having to Go Very Far)

Don’t know about you, but we’re pretty happy Spring is here! It could not have gotten here soon enough and you’re probably eager to get away and take a break.  If travel is not in your budget this spring, fret not. Here are seven “must-do” local activities this spring. Consider this your Spring in Eugene “bucket” list!

✓ Pack a picnic lunch and spend the afternoon strolling through Hendrick’s Park

With 80 acres of stunning gardens and incredible views, Hendricks Park is a must for any nature lover. It’s the oldest park in Eugene and it’s never quite as noticeable (or incredible) as when you’re walking beneath the branches of 200-year old fir trees.

✓ Take a quick roadtrip to Florence, Oregon

Florence may be a bit of a drive at 60 miles west of Eugene, but it’s absolutely worth it for the stunning beach! Grab some friends and enjoy surfing, biking, fishing, dune buggy riding, and kayaking. When you’re done, why not spend some time and explore Florence’s unique charms?

✓ Spend some time people watching at Amazon Park

With so much to do in this 99-acre park, there is ample opportunity for people watching as you unwind, relax and take in the scene. There’s tennis courts, soccer fields, a skate-park, baseball diamonds, ball fields, a community garden, concerts, picnic tables, recreation centers, bike paths, a dog park, and exercise stations. It also contains Eugene’s only outdoor pool in its recreation facilities.

✓ Embracing your wild side at the Cascades Raptor Center

No, not those kind of raptors… though that would be cool.

The Cascades Raptor Center houses one of the Pacific Northwest’s largest collections of birds of prey (over 50 species)! Eagles, Hawks, and Owls are just some of the usual suspects you’ll find in the center’s aviaries.

Tending to these beautiful creatures is a lot of work, so if you’re an animal lover looking for a way to become involved and make a difference why not volunteer and lend a hand?

✓ Enjoy a concert at WOW Hall

With shows ongoing throughout the year, there is no doubt you’ll find something to rock out to at WOW hall! Be sure to check out their Events Calendar!

✓ Hike up and enjoying the view at Spencer Butte

Spencer’s Butte is a favorite destination for students, couples, even families to recharge and reconnect with nature. You’ll be hard pressed to find a better spot to spend a day. You can typically expect to spend anywhere from 1-6 hours to reach Spencer Butte’s summit depending on which trail and pace you wish to take.

The Main Trail is a 700 foot climb over 1.08 miles, whereas the West Route is a 700 foot climb over 0.6 miles. How you decide to head up is up to you. Mountain bikes are not permitted but dogs are so bring your furry buddy with you just as long as you keep them on a leash.

✓ Find your moment of zen at Cougar Hot Springs

Located 50 miles east of Eugene is Cougar Hot Springs, a local favorite to get in some relaxation in the water. Take a dip in one five pools in springs that range from 85° to 112°! For just $6 you can enjoy an entire day! Heads up- swimsuits are optional.

Of course, there’s always the local staples of museums, movie theaters, cafes, parks, great shopping, and restaurants to enjoy.  So get out there and enjoy our city!

 

How did the U of O Duck Become so Famous?

Ducks

Unless you’re living under a rock, you have probably seen the famous U of O Duck mascot just about everywhere on campus! It’s hard to miss him, but how much do you really know about him?

In 1876, when the University of Oregon was founded, an unusual mascot that went by the nickname “Webfoots” emerged when a local sports editor by the name of L.H. Gregory coined the phrase.  The nickname was to remain for around 60 years until it took on a very different form.

The Duck mascot first took shape in the 1930s in the form of a white duck, a duck by the name of Puddles. Puddles made many appearances at big games and became a huge hit throughout campus and in the community.

Inspired by the popularity of cartoons in the 1940s, the mascot took on its first cartoon form. Over time, however, this form became more and more inspired by perhaps the most famous cartoon duck of all time, Donald Duck.

EvolutionofDuck

In what now may be considered a very fortunate and quite unique deal, an agreement was reached with Disney to continue using the likeness of Donald Duck. This manner of agreement would be near impossible to reach in present day, but a stroke of luck had Oregon Athletic Director Leo Harris sit down with Walt Disney himself to cement the verbal deal. It was later set down to paper and now U of O has the only Disney approved mascot of any sports team around!

Did you now that  The Duck is that it has never been displayed on a team helmet? The U of O helmets have either been blank, displayed a number, an interlocking U & O, or just the Oregon O.

Though the mascot may have once been “Webfoot”, these days the U of O Duck goes by many names such as Donald Duck, The Fighting Duck, and simply The Duck. Needless to say, no one has called it Puddles in a long time.

We’re proud of our Fighting Duck and look forward to seeing it proudly displayed on all our local teams for many more years to come. Go Ducks!!!

Winter Health Tips

UoEd

Winter’s a few weeks away and that can only mean one thing; no, not the holidays, we’re unfortunately speaking winter illnesses. If you’re not careful you may find yourself on the receiving end of an unwanted “gift.”

Of course, there are things you can do to protect yourself this winter to ensure that nothing stands in your way this holiday season. These tips are good ones to adopt throughout the year but even more so in winter.

Avoid close contact with anyone who is sick.

The easiest way to not get infected is to limit your exposure to disease. It may seem a bit callous but two sick people are not better than one.

Don’t share food or drink with anyone.

As with the previous tip, the name of the game is limiting your exposure to viruses and bacteria.

Get plenty of sleep.

Aim to get at least 7-8 hours of sleep a night.

Eat a well balanced diet.

A balanced diet should include a foods rich in carbohydrates and low in salts and sugar, as well as fruits and vegetables, fish, and plenty of fluids.

Take vitamin D.

With overcast skies and grey days, it’s easy to become a bit lethargic in the absence of sunlight. Vitamin D will help give you the extra boost you may be lacking in the sun’s absence.

Stay active and exercise.

It’s amazing what a little exercise will do, especially if you’re trying to work off an abundant holiday feast or two. Get your moving a little bit every day.

Get your shots.

Make sure you are up to date with your flu shots! University of Oregon often offers special days to get your flu shot. If you’ve missed it then your local doctor will be happy to provide one.

Wash your hands

Remember throughout the day with soap and hot water. If you are away from a sink then hand sanitizer will do.

If despite all these tips you find yourself feeling sick, be sure to stay home! There’s no need to pass your disease along to others. If your symptoms worsen be sure to consult with your doctor! There’s no need to spend the holiday season stuck in bed, after all!

photo credit: uoeducation 2013 09 26 COE orientation 679 via photopin (license)

Give it the Old College Try With These Back-to-School Tips

Photo Source - Scholar Advisor

Yeah, we know; heading back to college after summer break can be tough. You’re probably still enjoying your time off and avoiding thinking about classes and registration, right?

The truth is, it’s better to be prepared and to start thinking about it now rather than be blindsided later on. So whether you’re a returning student or a brand new enrollee, consider these Back-To-School tips to make your life easier down the road!

1. Registration and Paperwork are done, right?

This is a biggie so we’ll go ahead and make it number one. Be sure to fill out all necessary paperwork for your classes, meal plan, parking permits, and any other steps required to be a functioning student. There won’t be much of a back-to-school if you aren’t enrolled in any classes, after all.

2. Establish Healthy Habits

These are helpful to stick to all year round, but doubly so when heading back to class after a long break. Make sure to get 7-9 hours of sleep a day and drink plenty of water. Try to get exercise when you can and rest when you’re sick. Stick with these tips and you’ll be in good shape.

Roommates

3. Get to know your roomie

You two are going to be living together for a while! Get to know one another, establish rules for cohabitation, and treat each other with mutual respect. You’ll have enough on your mind without having to worry about roommate troubles.

4. Be Safe

We could devote a whole post just to this (and we have) but the important thing to take away is to always be aware of your surroundings and careful when traveling at night. The buddy system is your friend!

5. Warm Up Your Brain Before College

Heading back to class, you’ll be expected to do a lot of critical thinking, assignments, and test taking. Like any good muscle, you should warm up your brain before putting it to work. Lead up to your term start by engaging in some brain activities, such as sudoku or crossword puzzles.

Stick to these tips and you’ll be ready to face anything your classes have in store for you!

Local Spotlight – Eugene Sunday Streets

Photo Source Eugene-Or.gov

Get ready to hit the pavement! Eugene’s Sunday Streets are back for another day of fitness classes, biking, live music, vendors, food, yoga, dancing, and much more! The event will be taking place on September 25th in the South University neighborhood from Noon to 4PM. Best of all, these community driven events are all free!

Eugene’s Sunday Streets was launched back in 2011 as an initiative to promote healthy active living and car-less transportation. Through the years, it’s grown in popularity and is now expected to attract 4,000+ attendees this year!

Be mindful that Eugene’s Sunday Streets will be closing miles of traffic to accommodate the festivities, so be sure to plan accordingly when you’re getting around!

Photo Source Eugene-Or.govHave that route down? Great! Here are some pictures from previous years’ Sunday Streets to get you ready for the festivities.

Photo Source Eugene-Or.gov

Photo Source Eugene-Or.govSunday Streets

Of course, it can’t be stressed enough that Sunday Streets would not be possible without help of its talented volunteers. Interested in helping out? Register here to join the team!

Sunday Streets is a terrific opportunity to intermingle with your neighbors and the greater community while adopting a couple of healthy lifestyle choices. Let’s make this year’s Sunday Streets its biggest yet! See you on September 25th!

Photo Sources: Eugene-Or.gov

Even the Score with UO $CORE

UO$CORE

 

How much do you spend on electricity a month? What about water? Is it higher than you’d like to be spending? What if we told you that you could be helped with your bills and do your part to help the greater good in the process? That’s exactly the case with UO $CORE, a student run program to help students save money on their utility bills for environmentally-responsible practices.

$CORE stands for “Student and Community Outreach for Renter efficiency” and was started in 2012 by James Walton, a senior business major who secured a grant from Eugene Water and Electric Board to create the program. Through $CORE, student staff perform free audits and install upgrades in older, off-campus student rental housing while also helping student tenants by providing information, materials, and skills to help lower their carbon footprint and utility bills.

If you’re interested in hearing more about how $CORE can help you save money then you should register for a free energy assessment!

Energy Assessment

What does this assessment include? Simply put, two Energy Evaluators will come to your house and assess your energy needs. Over the course of an hour they will install low use devices such as CFL lightbulbs and weather stripping, while also give you some information on how to lower your energy consumption and carbon footprint.

Not only will your bills be lower and your house better for the environment, you’ll even get a free pizza from TrackTown Pizza if more than half the household is present!

CFLBulbs
Say hello to your new best friend.

Tips for Reducing Energy Use

$CORE’s Facebook page is constantly updated with handy tips to reduce your utility bills and carbon footprint. We’ve selected a few here to share.

  • Wrap your water tank with jacket insulation to save up to 10% on water heating costs.
  • Install low-flow showerheads.
  • When cooking on a stovetop, match the pan size to the heating surface to prevent heat loss to the surrounding air.
  • Put your computer and monitor to sleep mode (or off) when you’re not using them.
  • Replace your bulbs with Energy Star® efficient light bulbs.
  • Keep your freezer full to minimize energy used. For maximum savings fill the freezer with gallons of water.

A quick session with UO $CORE and you’ll have lower bills, a diminished carbon footprint, and free pizza!!! That’s what we call a win-win!

photo credit: CFL bulbs via photopin (license)

Zipcar Around Eugene

Zipcar_Logo.svg

As much as we love biking (and we really, really love biking), there are certain times when you simply need a car. The problem is, if you’re not a car owner this can often amount to the awkward begging of friends for a ride.

Well, say goodbye to unnecessary groveling, because Zipcar is providing students with an affordable way to get around Eugene! Zipcar has partnered up with University of Oregon to provide affordable prices to the student population, allowing you to join for only $15.

Oh, and did we mention gas and insurance are included? Sounds pretty good, doesn’t it?

How does Zipcar work?

  1. Join Zipcar

Once you’ve successfully joined, you’ll receive your Zipcard, the key (both figurative and literal) to unlocking cars, vans, and trucks the country over.

  1. Reserve a Car

Reserving is incredibly simple and can be done either online or on your phone.

  1. Tap your Card

Approach your Zipcar and hold your zipcard to the windshield, thus unlocking the car!

  1. Drive

With that done, you now are free to drive around! When your time is up just return your car to the same reserved parking spot.

Where to Pickup your Zipcar

Zipcar has several accessible locations around campus! Below are the locations you can pick up/drop off your vehicle.

Zipcar LocationsIf you’re planning on moving out (or moving in) in the near future, Zipcar is an excellent option to help lessen your burden come moving day. After all, those boxes aren’t going to carry themselves across town!

A you can see, Zipcar is a simple, affordable, and convenient option to travel around Eugene and beyond. So the next time you’re looking to make a trip to Portland, consider trying a Zipcar!

It’s Party Time! Do You Know About the Social Host Ordinance?

Wild Party

 

4th of July is approaching and you’re no doubt already planning your own party and/or being invited to get-togethers with friends. Before you get too carried away with planning your BBQs and events, however, you should keep the Social Host Ordinance in mind.

Wait, the What?

The Social Host Ordinance (also known as The Ordinance on Unruly Gatherings) is a law that holds individuals responsible for organizing and hosting an unruly event. In other words, if your party gets out of hand, you’re criminally responsible for it.

What Constitutes a Disorderly Gathering?

That’s a fair question, after all one person’s disorderly gathering might be another person’s book club. Here are the telltale signs of a party that will land you in trouble:

  • Over-packed gatherings filling out onto the streets.
  • Under-age drinking.
  • Open alcohol container/consumption in public.
  • Noise pollution that affects neighbors.
  • Interfering with a police officer.
  • Drunk and disorderly conduct.

In other words, if it’s likely to result in a call to the police, it’s considered a disorderly gathering.

What about Fireworks?

Legal Fireworks are permitted to be used between June 23-July 6 and December 31-Jan 1. Your 4th of July party should be fine having them, but you won’t be allowed to use them the rest of the year.

What Can I Do to Avoid Getting in Trouble?

Below are some suggestions from the City of Eugene to keep your party safe and acceptable:

Keep a Guest List

Though it’s always tempting to adopt a “come one come all” attitude about your party, this typically ends with a party at max capacity pouring out onto the streets. By knowing ahead of time how many people you’re inviting you’ll limit the party’s capacity to escalate beyond reasonable levels.

Inform Your Neighbors

Let your neighbors know the date and time of your party beforehand. While you’re at it, give them your phone number and contact information should any concerns arise. This step will go along way to avoiding the police being called on your event (and also makes you a better neighbor).

21+ Only

Keep your party legal! If there’s going to be drinking make sure all guests are of the legal drinking age.

Monitor Noise Levels

Keep an eye (an ear?) on the noise levels of your party. Don’t blast your music to the point where people have to yell to one another and keep the hollering to a minimum.

Clean Up After Yourself

Your neighbors are less likely to have any issues with your (or involve the police) if your party is organized and clean.  Pick up after yourself when the event’s over.

Prevent Drunk Driving

Regardless of the Social Host Ordinance, this should be a rule for every party you host or are a part of. Do not allow your friends or you yourself drink and drive, or breaking the law will be the least of your concerns.

Be Polite to the Police

Look we get it, nobody wants the police showing up at their door, but it’s important to remember that they are doing their job. Be courteous and helpful should the authorities come with concerns about your party.

Call The Police if Needed

Call the police to your own party? When it’s getting out of hand or becoming dangerous, absolutely. If things reach the point where you yourself can’t control it, give the authorities a call.

That’s a good starting point on the Social Host Ordinance and should be enough to help you plan your upcoming summer parties. If you want to know more, you can read about the ordinance at Party Safe, Party Responsibly.  Have fun!

photo credit: Kids gone crazy via photopin (license)

Time To Get Your Culture On

Hult Center for the Performing Arts

Photo Source: Hult Center for the Performing Arts via Facebook

Eugene is a renowned destination for the culture seeker. From the University of Oregon to its beautiful parks and historic architecture, a day spent in Eugene is bound to leave to visitors inspired.

Nowhere is that more true than at these must-visit locations:

Museum of Natural and Cultural History

Breathe in that Pre-Historic Oregonian air! The Museum of Natural and Cultural history is an incomparable look into Oregon’s distant past, a good 300 million years of history in the making.

Witness the saber tooth salmon, the giant sloth, the buzz saw sharks, or head on over to the Glen Starlin Native Plant Courtyard, a research collection of over 120 of Oregon’s native plants.

Oregon Air and Space Museum

It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s the Oregon Air and Space Museum! Explore its collection of various aircrafts and artifacts chronicling the history of air and space travel. We recommend taking a guided tour to get a first-hand account of aeronautical history from a former aviator as they lead you through the museum.

Be sure to visit during the Oregon Air and Space Museum’s special events, which include air fairs, dinner speakers, fly-ins, and more!

Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art

Nothing inspires the mind quite as much as a first hand look at the masterworks of some of history’s most influential artists. From photography to sculpture to painting to manuscripts you can find it all at the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art.

The Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art also offers various ways to get involved with regularly hosted workshops and events throughout the year.

Hult Center for The Performing Arts

Located in the heart of Downtown Eugene’s art district, the Hult Center for the Performing Arts is a one-stop shop for stage shows and concerts. Fans of the ballet and The Book of Mormon alike will find themselves at home here. After the show, be sure to check out the permanent art collection on display throughout the venue. When we say there’s something for everyone at the Hult Center for the Performing Arts, we mean it.

Oregon Contemporary Theatre

Theatre in the truest sense of the word! Behold hilarious comedies, tear-wrenching dramas, and toe-tapping musicals all in a one of Eugene’s top playhouses.

Looking to take some theatre or playwriting classes? The Oregon Contemporary Theatre has you covered. For the bolder among you looking to steal the spotlight, the Oregon Contemporary Theatre hosts annual auditions to join their roster.  They also have a vibrant volunteer program and great opportunities for practicum students and interns.

Cascades Raptor Center

No, not those kind of raptors.

The Cascades Raptor Center houses one of the Pacific Northwest’s largest collections of birds of prey (over 50 species)! Eagles, Hawks, and Owls are just some of the usual suspects you’ll find in the center’s aviaries.

Tending to these beautiful creatures is a lot of work, so if you’re an animal lover looking for a way to become involved and make a difference why not volunteer and lend a hand?

Smith Family Bookstore

For an avid reader there’s a unique thrill in finding a long sought-after book. The Smith Family Bookstore is the ideal hunting ground for anyone desperately searching for that elusive signed copy of Confederacy of Dunces. They even buy and resell course textbooks so be sure to check-in at the start of the term to give your wallet a little breathing room.

With two branches in Eugene (University of Oregon campus and one downtown) you’ll have countless, countless books to choose from.

Eugene Public Library

You may be asking yourself “did they really just suggest the public library?” You’re absolutely right we did. Eugene residents get a free library card granting access to books, TV shows, movies, magazines, audio books, CDs and even video games! Treat yourself to some of the classics without spending a dime or cluttering your bookshelves.

Did you know that with Overdrive or similar apps you can be renting digital books for free just by having a library card? That’s right, you don’t even have to leave the house anymore.

When you’re done soaking in the vast teachings of the past, head on over to Sizzle Pie for a slice. Not a bad way to spend a day.