By Erika Kar
With the Fourth of July coming up, I know that I should be writing about something patriotic, celebratory or, at the very least, regarding the fireworks ban. But up in Mazama we don’t have a parade, a festival or even any face painting. If you want some of this action, head to Twisp for Methow Arts’ fabulous Fourth of July Festival. It is a convergence of some of the greatest things about our valley and is a real treat.
But I am instead going to write about one of the heroes of Mazama. The person that many of us could not live up here without. Yes, you guessed it, Jason Hubbard, UPS driver and all-around great guy. Let’s face it, as much as we’d like to say that we buy everything local, sometimes that just isn’t feasible and the siren song of Amazon is just too much to ignore. I’m sure that everyone thinks that their UPS person is the best, but Jason actually is the best. Or else he fakes it pretty well.
Jason was born in Fairbanks, Alaska, 42 years ago but grew up in Riverside, where he lives today. He also just happens to be the mayor of Riverside. And is on the volunteer fire department. But before finding all this fame and notoriety, he worked for Valley Lumber and was a semi-professional bull rider. It is possible that some of his bull-riding skills come into play while driving Big Brown (that’s the UPS truck, in case you didn’t know), on some of the terrible roads on his route.
When I asked him to tell me about his weirdest UPS moment, Jason relayed this story: “I was covering a route at the north end of the county and a very nice gentleman walked out to greet me and start a lengthy conversation. He was very friendly and seemed glad to visit with me since he lived in the middle of nowhere. As he walked away, my only thought was that I’d avoid the nudist house from now on.”
I am pretty sure that he has other weird stories, but he still sees these people on his current route and doesn’t want to put anyone on blast. That’s just the kind of nice guy that he is.
Jason has three daughters and loves kids, which I can attest to as he has been known to engage in some snowball fights with my kids. He is a devoted family man and spends time being tricked by his dad into doing all sorts of work. He also enjoys flying, and is a pilot. When he retires, he’d like to move back to Alaska. But I think we all hope that won’t be for anytime in the near future.
Happy Independence Day and remember, no fireworks!