Photographer Mark Ylen braved 90-plus-degree conditions Saturday to capture slices of summer life throughout the mid-valley.
First, he drove to Lebanon for the Gambler 500, a mostly off-road, rally-style "navigational adventure" for vehicles of every stripe, "beaters" that cost no more than $500. He found Duncan Lees of Klamath Falls spray-painting "Gambler 500" onto the tailgate of Kris Canete's Ford pickup while Canete and Kimberly Heesacker repaired their covered wagon canopy along Whiskey Butte Road. Hundreds of racers passed through Lebanon over the weekend, picking up GPS coordinates at Conversion Brewing before tackling roads between the mid-valley and Chemult in Klamath County.
Later he checked out the Sportsman's Holiday in Sweet Home, where it was beginning to look a lot like Christmas. He caught this cute shot of 4-year-old Waylon Cowdrey sleeping atop grandmother Billie Bjornsen's Palomino, Snickers. Cowdrey was dressed as a character from Tim Burton's classic "A Nightmare Before Christmas," although the boy appears to be having a much better dream.
Finally, he cooled off at Swanson Park, courtesy of the Albany Fire Department. Crews had activated a deluge gun from a ladder truck to the relief of grateful visitors and passersby. The AFD had announced the event on social media Friday, declaring, "We will set up the biggest sprinkler you have ever seen!" Local youth were given opportunities to aim the cannon. Albany firefighter Greg Sipe helped Alyas Sutherlin, 6, control the master stream while Alyas' brother Urijah, 7, waited his turn.