Wednesday, June 01, 2016

Know Your Neighbor: Mary, Mary, proves to be extraordinary - Full Article

STEFANIE NOONAN For the Philomath Express
June 1 2016

Mary, Mary, quite contrary, this article is not. Meet Mary, Mary, extraordinary, your neighbor, Mary Kautz.

It’s fun to discover how people land in Philomath. Truth is most of us mispronounced the name of our town the first time we came over the hill into city limits. For that matter, who dares voice texting the word, Philomath? My Bluetooth freaks if I so much as mention the word. Which I’ve learned to outsmart by simply saying, “Where home is,” instead of “Philomath” when texting.

Mary’s not so unlike yourself. She didn’t set out for Philomath and yet it has tattooed itself upon her heart. She’s here for good having recently purchased her forever home right here in, you know — where home is.

Mary graduated high school in Ohio and began like most 18-year-olds exploring the world where mom and dad are not. She headed west to Idaho, accepting a working student position in a horse training and breeding facility. The following summer she moved to California taking a similar position.

Fast forward to Mary meeting Scott, who planned to attend Oregon State. The NW began its tug on Mary when they came to check out the area.

“I really enjoyed the West. I just decided that I belong in the West, I don’t belong in Ohio. There are no mountains in Ohio,” said Mary.

After renting in Philomath for two months Mary just knew…

“I knew I’d like to stay around here. I fell in love with the area. I liked the recreational opportunities, the public hiking and horseback riding areas like Bald Hill, and McDonald and Starker forests. They’re both so friendly to recreational users. Where I come from, there’s nothing like that.”

Mary also likes the culture here.

“The culture here is hard to describe,” she said. “Maybe it’s in part because Corvallis is a college town, but there are lots of free events here. I went to the master gardener seminar and a health fair a couple weeks ago. I really enjoyed that.”

But ask Mary what she enjoys above all else and she will answer…

“HORSES!” She will say with a beautiful grin as her large brown eyes sparkle.

Mary eats, sleeps and breathes horses. As a child, Mary had a collection of “My Little Ponies.” By age 8, she became obsessed with the real thing. She wondered if she might have a career as a professional athlete, or a riding athlete, but Mary decided that being a jockey wasn’t for her.

She worked with professional horse trainers who taught her about basic training and breeding. She learned how to handle stallions and foals and organize events. Soon she was introduced to one of the great highlights of her life — endurance riding...

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