Community, Cottage Grove

Bohemia Mining Days 2023 features parade, races

Lil Miss Bohemia City Miner contest

The Lil Miss Bohemia City Miner (LMBCM) contest had a great turnout for only its second year as an event within BMD. There were 17 participants, and the tables set out for audience members were rather full with families and curious attendees.

This pageant was run and organized by Miss Oregon Volunteer, specifically Heidi Albertson and Zonnie Borg, and the emcees were Miss Southern Orgeon Volunteer Payton Idrogo and Miss Oregon Teen Volunteer Abby Taylor, both of whom effortlessly connected with the young girls in each age range.

When it came to deciding winners of each of the three LMBCM age ranges, judges mayor Candace Solesbee, Marshal Christina Hester, and Borg discussed personality, stage presence, and costumes. Solesbee said LMBCM is all about “seeing the energy of the kids.”

Each contestant got a participation crown and was eligible to ride in the parade, but the three winners were separated in their own parade float and also earned a sash, a pin, and a bigger crown. Only two of the winners – 3-year-old Clarabelle and 11-year-old Faith – were in their designated parade float, though, as 7-year-old Olivia must have opted out.
Amanda Lurey

Ore Cart Races

For the last three years one of the highlights of BMD has been the Ore Cart Races, where teams of three race homemade Ore Carts on 10th Street by Bohemia Park. This year was a double-elimination bracket, with D&D Automotive coming out on top for the second time in three years. The D&D team of Mike Wilson, James Deatherage and Jeff Conklin won the tiebreak race against the team from Covered Bridge Brewing Group to clinch the title.

“Going into the tiebreaker race, we just wanted to go in there and get the win,” Wilson said. “We wanted to pull this out, push the last little bit to get in there first.”

Five teams of adults competed in this year’s event, with two “Miners” pushing and controling the cart, and a “Tommyknocker” riding inside. Two teams competed in each race, with the two miners pushing the cart roughly 100 feet where the tommyknocker jumped out, grabbed three sandbags, and leaped back into the cart as the miners pushed back to the start/finish line.

A big reason for the D&D win was Deatherage, who was the team’s tommyknocker. Deatherage rode much of the initial race on top of the cart, ready to leap out and grab the sandbags in quick time. Once he grabbed the bags, multiple times Deatherage leaped back into the Ore Cart headfirst so his teammates could start pushing to the finish line.

“It doesn’t matter if I get hurt, they’re gonna push me across the finish line,” Deatherage said. “So all I gotta do is get the bags in and get in the cart, and then let the rest sort itself out.”

The D&D team initially built their Ore Cart in 2021 before the inaugural Ore Cart Race, and said it took them two nights after work to get the cart done. This year’s event also saw the first “minor mining” race, with two teams of kids going head-to-head in a best-of-three competition.

For the D&D team, it’s the entire spectacle that makes BMD so special.

“They’ve been doing BMD for I don’t know how many years, but hopefully they got another 100 to go,” Conklin said. “It’s a great family event. You see all the kids lined up and now that they got the kids to work hard and race. It’s awesome.”
Pierre Weil

Grand Miners Parade

The final parade of BMD, the Grand Miner’s Parade, was an event many were looking forward to all weekend. The streets were lined with people eager to watch the parade participants – both human and animal – make their way through the designated route. Reyna Ayala drove the float for Family Relief Nursery and said being in the parade was “awesome.”
Amanda Lurey



View this profile on Instagram


The Chronicle (@thechronicle1909) • Instagram photos and videos