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Central Oregon New Friends Connection welcomes newcomers, as well as "vintage" Bendites, who are interested in developing new friendships and in exploring the area's vast opportunities for recreation, education, and merrymaking. Our gatherings are as diverse as the group itself. Please join us on our journey!



DINING OUT (locals' favorites)







AND anything else a member might suggest.

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Upcoming events (5)

Book Club - The Silence Of The Girls

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***LOCATION TBD - WILL LIKELY BE INSIDE! The Silence of the Girls, by Pat Barker From Amazon: A Washington Post Notable Book One of the Best Books of the Year: NPR, The Economist, Financial Times Shortlisted for the Costa Novel Award Finalist for the Women’s Prize for Fiction Here is the story of the Iliad as we’ve never heard it before: in the words of Briseis, Trojan queen and captive of Achilles. Given only a few words in Homer’s epic and largely erased by history, she is nonetheless a pivotal figure in the Trojan War. In these pages she comes fully to life: wry, watchful, forging connections among her fellow female prisoners even as she is caught between Greece’s two most powerful warriors. Her story pulls back the veil on the thousands of women who lived behind the scenes of the Greek army camp—concubines, nurses, prostitutes, the women who lay out the dead—as gods and mortals spar, and as a legendary war hurtles toward its inevitable conclusion. Brilliantly written, filled with moments of terror and beauty, The Silence of the Girls gives voice to an extraordinary woman—and makes an ancient story new again.

Kentucky Bourbon tasting and Cigars!

Deb Taormina's House

YOU MUST PREPAY to VENMO TO DEB $20 @Debra-Taormina TO ATTEND THIS EVENT If you use PayPal, use friends and family option not services as they charge a fee for service option *****Venmo may ask you the last four ••••••digits of my phone number, it’s 3067. •••Or my email: [masked] AFTER SIGN UP, PLS PAY YOUR FEE OR BE MOVED TO THE NOT GOING LIST. *** Outdoor event with patio heater and fire pits for warming. Yes, mask are needed for indoor bathroom use. Sanitizer available We’ll have a selection of Kentucky Bourbons for sampling along with a bit of learning about Bourbon - how's it made, etc. Pls bring your own cigars for pairing!! Evening of Bourbon tasting & cigars - Bring your own Cigars! We’ll have appetizers, bottled water, some beer and wine along with a few desserts You can bring your own wine or dessert as well if you choose. You may bring your own appetizer if you’d like *** WHAT IS BOURBON? Bourbon is an American Whiskey produced mainly in the southern part of Kentucky State. What Is Bourbon? According to US Trade Legislation, a “bourbon” is a type of whiskey where the “mashbill”—which is the recipe of grains used to produce the whiskey—consists of 51% - 80% corn. Typically, distillers use approximately 70% corn content and are free to choose other grains for the remainder of the mashbill. The type of grain used will affect the style and flavors of the whiskey. There are specific guidelines that distiller's must follow in order to put the word bourbon on the label. The Process - Most bourbon starts with sour mash. It is taken from a previous batch of mash (crushed grain going through the fermentation process), set out to sour overnight, and then added to a new batch. The process is much like that of starting a sourdough bread. The Recipe - Bourbon is distilled from a fermented mash of grain, yeast and water. The “mash bill” must have a minimum of 51% corn. For most bourbons, the average is about 70%. Other grains such as rye, malted barley and wheat are considered the “flavor” grain. Length of Aging - Bourbon must be aged for a minimum of two years. Many premium bourbons on the market are aged between 5 -12, with some as long as 27 years. The Barrel - Bourbon must be aged in brand new barrels which are made of white oak and have been charred on the inside. Brands determine the varying levels of char for their barrels from 1 to 4. Flavor – By law nothing can be added at bottling except water. Nothing is added that might enhance flavor, add sweetness or alter color. Proof - Bourbon is bottled at between 80 and 125 proof. Only water may be used to lower the proof of the alcohol. Location – Bourbon can be made anywhere in the US. Only whiskey produced in the State of Kentucky can be called labeled Kentucky Straight Whiskey.

Book Club - American Dirt

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***LOCATION TBD - WILL LIKELY BE INSIDE! American Dirt, by Jeanine Cummins From Amazon: #1 New York Times Bestseller OPRAH’S BOOK CLUB PICK “Extraordinary.” —Stephen King “This book is not simply the great American novel; it’s the great novel of las Americas. It’s the great world novel! This is the international story of our times. Masterful.” —Sandra Cisneros También de este lado hay sueños. On this side, too, there are dreams. Lydia Quixano Pérez lives in the Mexican city of Acapulco. She runs a bookstore. She has a son, Luca, the love of her life, and a wonderful husband who is a journalist. And while there are cracks beginning to show in Acapulco because of the drug cartels, her life is, by and large, fairly comfortable. Even though she knows they’ll never sell, Lydia stocks some of her all-time favorite books in her store. And then one day a man enters the shop to browse and comes up to the register with a few books he would like to buy—two of them her favorites. Javier is erudite. He is charming. And, unbeknownst to Lydia, he is the jefe of the newest drug cartel that has gruesomely taken over the city. When Lydia’s husband’s tell-all profile of Javier is published, none of their lives will ever be the same. Forced to flee, Lydia and eight-year-old Luca soon find themselves miles and worlds away from their comfortable middle-class existence. Instantly transformed into migrants, Lydia and Luca ride la bestia—trains that make their way north toward the United States, which is the only place Javier’s reach doesn’t extend. As they join the countless people trying to reach el norte, Lydia soon sees that everyone is running from something. But what exactly are they running to? American Dirt will leave readers utterly changed. It is a literary achievement filled with poignancy, drama, and humanity on every page. It is one of the most important books for our times. Already being hailed as "a Grapes of Wrath for our times" and "a new American classic," Jeanine Cummins's American Dirt is a rare exploration into the inner hearts of people willing to sacrifice everything for a glimmer of hope.

Book Club - The Devil's Harvest, by Jessica Garrison

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***LOCATION TBD - WILL LIKELY BE INSIDE! "Meticulously researched and tightly woven, The Devil's Harvest is an important story because it tells us that if [this] can happen in one place, then it can happen in any place. And that's damn scary."--Michael Connelly, New York Times bestselling author of The Closers, The Lincoln Lawyer, and The Night Fire A page-turning, suspenseful story of a drug cartel hit man who got away with murder after murder in California's Central Valley for three decades, The Devil's Harvest reveals how the criminal justice system fails our most vulnerable immigrant communities. On the surface, fifty-eight-year-old Jose Martinez didn't seem evil or even that remarkable- just a regular neighbor, good with cars and devoted to his family. But in between taking his children to Disneyland and visiting his mom, Martinez was also one of the most skilled professional killers police had ever seen. He tracked one victim to one of the wealthiest corners of America, a horse ranch in Santa Barbara, and shot him dead in the morning sunlight, setting off a decades-long manhunt. He shot another man, a farmworker, right in front of his young wife as they drove to work in the fields. The widow would wait decades for justice. Those were murders for hire. Others he killed for vengeance. How did Martinez manage to evade law enforcement for so long with little more than a slap on the wrist? Because he understood a dark truth about the criminal justice system: if you kill the "right people"-people who are poor, who aren't white, and who don't have anyone to speak up for them-you can get away with it. Melding the pacing and suspense of a true crime thriller with the rigor of top-notch investigative journalism, The Devil's Harvest follows award-winning reporter Jessica Garrison's relentless search for the truth as she traces the life of this assassin, the cops who were always a few steps behind him, and the families of his many victims. Drawing upon decades of case files, interrogation transcripts, on-the-ground reporting, and Martinez's chilling handwritten journals, The Devil's Harvest uses a gripping and often shocking narrative to dig into one of the most important moral questions haunting our politically divided nation today: Why do some deaths-and some lives-matter more than others?

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