Volunteer is reaching out to help transport 'Breakup Season' cast and crew around town

Feb. 20—LA GRANDE — Carolyn Thompson is often on the go at all hours of the day and night while helping run Rob's Speedy Delivery, a business she co-owns.

But the Perry resident's schedule has been even busier than usual the past two weeks. Thompson is providing all the transportation for the cast and crew of "Breakup Season," which began filming in La Grande in early February under Los Angeles filmmaker H. Nelson Tracey.

"My goal is to make everyone feel welcome and help everyone have a great experience," she said.

The volunteer drives the film's cast and crew, who are all staying at La Grande hotels, motels and Airbnbs, to and from film shoots. Rob's Speedy Delivery also is providing two cars to the cast and crew to use free of charge while they are in La Grande.

Thompson often finds herself transporting actors and crew members when most of La Grande is asleep. For example, there are days that start at 3 a.m. when she picks them up and drives them to their lodging locations. Such pre-dawn pickups are needed when extended evening shoots are conducted. Many such shoots come at the end of sessions that started at 3 p.m, lasting 12 hours in length, Tracey said.

Cross-state trips to and from Portland are also being made by Thompson to help the film project. Her most recent trip was to Portland on Sunday, Feb. 19, to pick up two cast members at Portland International Airport.

Thompson decided to provide transportation for the production after she drove two actors in the movie from Portland's airport to La Grande in early February. Thompson was so impressed with them, plus the other cast and crew members she met later, that she stepped forward and offered to provide her services.

"They are phenomenal people," Thompson said.

The film under production is about two college students attending school outside Northeastern Oregon. The young couple, Ben and Cassie, are in La Grande during Christmas break where they are visiting Ben's family. Unfortunately, the couple breaks up during the visit, creating an awkward situation for Cassie, who cannot leave La Grande for her parents home in Illinois for logistical reasons. This leaves the two students stuck in the same house during a portion of the holiday season.

Much of the filming of the movie is being done in a home on Morgan Lake Road. Tracey said the Morgan Lake area is ideal because of the snow there, which ties in with the film's Christmas setting. This is proving to be a big help since there is little snow right now in La Grande and the Grande Ronde Valley, Tracey said.

The local filming of "Breakup Season" is expected to end Friday, Feb. 24.

Dick Mason is a reporter with The Observer. Contact him at 541-624-6016 or dmason@lagrandeobserver.com.