Stories for February 2018


Saturday, February 17


Become a ‘Gorge Master Naturalist’

The Columbia River Gorge is a place of amazing beauty, diverse ecosystems, outdoor recreation opportunities and natural resources. It is a place where the line that separates human beings from the natural world largely overlaps.

February 17, 2018 midnight read more..

School District breaks ground for first new building in 49 years

“We’re going to be witnessing a transformation here,” said Superintendent Dan Goldman at the start of the new May Street School project Feb. 12, welcoming a crowd of 100 or so people that included students, staff, school board, construction crew, and community members.

February 17, 2018 midnight read more..

HRV swimming takes district title

The Hood River Valley swim team continued its dominant season last weekend with first and second place team finishes at the Columbia River Conference District Swim Meet in Hood River.

February 17, 2018 midnight read more..

Schools okay Local Option resolution

Voters in Hood River County will be asked on May 15 to renew a district tax known as Local Option Levy. Hood River County School Board approved the resolution to refer the five-year levy (LOC) to voters in its meeting Wednesday.

February 17, 2018 midnight read more..

Be heart SMART

February is American Heart Month, and despite years of awareness campaigns, many people are surprised to find out heart disease remains the number one killer of men and women in the United States. The good news is, it is a very preventable disease.

February 17, 2018 midnight read more..

Flags Lowered: Victims in Parkland, Fla.

Gov. Kate Brown on Thursday ordered all flags at Oregon public institutions to be flown at half-staff immediately until sunset on Feb. 19 in honor of the victims of the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla.

February 17, 2018 midnight read more..

Sales Tax Hearing

The Hood River County Board of Commissioners will hold the second and final hearing at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 20 on the proposed sales tax measure that could go before voters in May.

February 17, 2018 midnight read more..

Yasui Tribute Youth essay contest calls for entries

Oregon middle-school and high-school students have the opportunity to learn about local civil-rights hero Minoru Yasui and enter an essay contest sponsored by the Oregon Nikkei Endowment and the Minoru Yasui Tribute Project.

February 17, 2018 midnight read more..


Gorge Sinfonietta members perform at Walmart last week in one of several “Flash Mob” musical performances at local stores to call attention to the ensemble’s Beethoven concerts in March.

February 17, 2018 midnight read more..

Taste local fare for SMART on Feb. 22

Local food and drink and a silent auction will highlight the first “SMART Sip,” a benefit for the Start Making A Reader Today (SMART) literacy programs in Hood River and Wasco counties.

February 17, 2018 midnight read more..

Friday, February 16

Four to Go, Feb. 17 edition

Wyden town halls set for Feb. 24; Hood River Indoor Farmers’ Market Saturday; East-bound right lane of I-84 closing for three months;

February 16, 2018 12:25 p.m. read more..

Wednesday, February 14


New Wyeth trail takes shape

High above Interstate 84 west of Hood River, constructions crews were hard at work Friday assembling pieces of an over-land bridge that will reconnect abandoned stretches of the Historic Columbia River Highway State Trail.

February 14, 2018 midnight read more..

May Street changes

Superintendent Dan Goldman speaks Monday at the groundbreaking ceremony at May Street Elementary, which will be replaced over the next two years.

February 14, 2018 midnight read more..

Mosier Farmers’ Market announces time change

This year, the Mosier Farmers’ Market will be held on Sundays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. in downtown Mosier. Nearly 200 market shoppers and Mosier community members were surveyed before making the decision to shift the market to late morning and early afternoon hours. Over 70 percent of those surveyed agreed with the change.

February 14, 2018 midnight read more..

HRV celebrates National FFA week

National FFA week is Feb. 18-25, and this year the Hood River Valley FFA chapter has several local activities planned. The first is the annual Pass the Pig fundraiser on Tuesday, Feb. 20 beginning at 9 a.m.

February 14, 2018 midnight read more..

Kegler's Corner: Phelps Pounds 745

Orchard Lanes’ new 3 pound, 6 ounce Twister pins are proving to be a bit of a challenge for just about everybody in league action at Hood River’s venerable tenpin palace.

February 14, 2018 midnight read more..

Level 3 sex offender locates to TD

A man convicted of sex crimes in Hood River County in 2006 and 2011 has moved to The Dalles and is classified as a Level 3 offender, meaning he’s at “high risk” to reoffend.

February 14, 2018 midnight read more..

Want to help with the Children’s Park?

Work parties are planned for early June on construction of a new play structure at Children’s Park, Ninth and Eugene streets. Hood River Rotary Foundation is working with City of Hood River on the fundraising and construction elements of the structure replacement.

February 14, 2018 midnight read more..

Travelogue: Mexico

From the rooftop of my office building in Bucerias, Mexico, I overlook the Bay of Banderas, an area well-known by residents of the Pacific Northwest as a surf and kiteboarding destination. I’m coming up on one year in this small, seaside town and it only seems right to reflect on how I got here.

February 14, 2018 midnight read more..

Shelter Volunteers

Potluck dinner at Rockford Grange brings together volunteers for Hood River Shelter Service, which operates the Warming Shelter. The gathering was a first in the eight years since the shelter was founded, and after dinner volunteers and other community members brainstormed on shelter needs and ideas for improvement.

February 14, 2018 midnight read more..

Providence proves it cares for ‘Hood River family’

Jacqueline Kay Smithwick of Hood River writes, “I have lived in four states and in three of those states, at least 10 years. I was born in Virginia, moved to Florida as an adult, moved to Washington state for my husband’s work, and now we are retired in Hood River.

February 14, 2018 midnight read more..

Love of writing turns to a gift to SMART reading

Dr. Sherene Suchy (AASW, ICOM), formerly of Hood River and now of Canberra, Australia, writes, “I graduated from Wy’east High School in 1970. As a junior and senior at Wy’east, I wrote for the school newspaper and had a weekly column in the Hood River News as publicity officer for the school. Writing became a passion … more on that later…"

February 14, 2018 midnight read more..

Tuesday, February 13

Four to Go, Feb.14 edition

The Feb. 24 “I Hate Cancer” benefit concert brings “Almost Amazing Tales from an Underachiever” from musician Molly Schwarz and Friends. Songs and readings will highlight the two shows at Columbia Center for the Arts. Tickets are $30 for the 6 p.m. show; the 8:30 p.m. show is soldout., or visit

February 13, 2018 2:45 p.m. read more..

Saturday, February 10

The Porch: Feb. 10 edition

WELL SAID: Photo at left, a clipping inside the dugout at the ballfield at Belmont, where HRVHS softball plays. The field turf there is about to change, but likely not the spirit coach Eric Keller brings each season.

February 10, 2018 midnight read more..

Play Works open house Feb. 21

Speech Language Pathologist, Sarah McDonnell, M.A. CCC/SLP, owner and director of Play Works Children’s Therapies, has expanded services and clinic space in Hood River.

February 10, 2018 midnight read more..

‘Mods, Rods and Custom Cars’ at WAAAM

For as long as there have been cars to work on, people have been taking them and making them their own. The Western Antique Aeroplane and Automobile Museum (WAAAM) will feature these homespun alterations during its Feb. 10 Second Saturday event between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.

February 10, 2018 midnight read more..

First ‘Reach for Excellence’ Gala: HR County Education Foundation raises over $40,000

The Hood River County Education Foundation has declared its first-ever fundraising gala a success. Supporters from throughout the Gorge gathered Feb. 3 for a dinner and auction event at the Best Western Plus Hood River Inn. The foundation raised over $40,000 to support their Innovative Teaching Grants Program, which awards funds to teachers and staff who find better ways to teach, new subjects to explore and interesting experiments to try.

February 10, 2018 midnight read more..

Columbia Art Center opens Sketchbook Library

Columbia Center for the Arts has announced creation of The Panzer Collective Wisdom Sketchbook Library, home to sketchbooks submitted this winter by many local, regional, national, and international artists.

February 10, 2018 midnight read more..

Airport options: CL Port holds town hall

The seldom used airport in Cascade Locks could get improvements or an entirely new purpose, according to strategies the Port of Cascade Locks and state aviation staff are taking a look at.

February 10, 2018 midnight read more..

Honoring Judge Carey

Approximately 800 people filled the seating area in the main hangar Friday morning at Western Antique Aeroplane and Automobile Museum for a memorial service honoring Judge Wilford “Will” Carey.

February 10, 2018 midnight read more..

HRMS wrestler wins state

The Wrestling Middle School State Championships took place last Saturday, Feb. 3, at Hood River Valley High School.

February 10, 2018 midnight read more..

MCMC waterfront clinics open soon

Work continues at Mid-Columbia Medical Center’s new outpatient care facility, called Nichols Landing, on the Hood River waterfront. According to MCMC, the building’s clinics will open this spring.

February 10, 2018 midnight read more..

Friday, February 9

Aurora del Val files for Dist. 52

Cascade Locks resident and long-time educator Aurora del Val officially filed her candidacy last week to be the State Representative of District 52, which includes Hood River County and parts of both Clackamas and East Multnomah counties.

February 9, 2018 3:14 p.m. read more..

Mark your books: HR Library ‘Million Page Challenge’ returns through March 17

The gauntlet has been thrown again. Hood River County Library District has been issued a Million Page Challenge by the Pendleton Public Library and a combined team of the Harney and Lake County Libraries. This three-way race is to see which library’s patrons can reach one million pages first. With help from patrons, Hood River County could win all the glory.

February 9, 2018 1:42 p.m. read more..

Wednesday, February 7


Four to Go, Feb. 7 edition

‘Community Rummage Day’ Feb. 10; HRCSD seeking substitute classified staff; Little Feet Valentine’s Auction is Saturday; Second Saturday at WAAAM

February 7, 2018 midnight read more..

Crowd slams county sales tax

A two-percent countywide sales and tourism tax proposal took heat from a crowd of residents who packed the Hood River County Board of Commissioners’ meeting room Monday night.

February 7, 2018 midnight read more..

Judge Carey dies, age 76

As good with a wrench as he was with a gavel, Wilford “Will” Carey died Feb. 3, leaving a long legacy of community service. The attorney, judge and car collector was 76.

February 7, 2018 midnight read more..

Hydro Automatons Robotics goes to FLL Open

The Hydro Automatons from Hood River won the overall fourth place Championship Award in the Oregon State First Lego League Championship Tournament last month and has been invited to compete at the First Lego League North American Open Championship on May 18 at Legoland in California.

February 7, 2018 midnight read more..

OBOB Gorge Invitational

Students from Westside, May Street, Parkdale and Mosier elementary schools gathered recently at Hood River Middle School for the Oregon Battle of the Books (OBOB) Gorge Invitational 2018.

February 7, 2018 midnight read more..

Hood River author releases new book

Local author Vikki Claflin is releasing her new book, “I Think My Guardian Angel Drinks: Irreverent Advice on Living Well After 60,” on Feb. 13 on Amazon.

February 7, 2018 midnight read more..

Insitu CEO Ryan Hartman steps down

The Chief Executive Officer of Insitu in the Gorge, Ryan Hartman, has left the aviation firm for personal reasons, according to Insitu spokesman Jennifer Beloy.

February 7, 2018 midnight read more..

‘Growing a Revolution’ talk at WS Grange

If you’re a farmer, gardener, or just plain appreciate getting to eat food, February 23, is a date to save: author and University of Washington researcher David R. Montgomery will speak about “Growing A Revolution: Bringing Our Soil Back to Life,” the title of his recent book.

February 7, 2018 midnight read more..

Terminal backers respond to denial

Vancouver, Wash. (AP) — The joint venture that wanted to build what would have been the nation’s largest oil-by-rail terminal says Gov. Jay Inslee’s rejection of a permit “sends a clear anti-development message.”

February 7, 2018 midnight read more..

Girls Up collects bras for homeless this month

Hood River Valley High School Girl Up is partnering with I Support the Girls, Helping Hands Against Violence, and Oak Street businesses Melika and Laurel & Eddie for a February community service project.

February 7, 2018 midnight read more..

Sticker shock Team

HEALTH Media Club and HOSA Club volunteers and staff form a “Sticker Shock” line holding Don’t Drink and Drive stickers.

February 7, 2018 midnight read more..

Buyer/seller matchmaker market comes to FISH

Join Gorge Grown Food Network, OSU and WSU Extension Services on Feb. 15 for a unique opportunity to network, make plans, discuss challenges, and lay the groundwork for getting more local food into schools, restaurants, hospitals and businesses.

February 7, 2018 midnight read more..

Pick of the Week: HRVHS students, more at CCA

Hood River Valley High School art students recently learned their placement in the Oregon Scholastic Art Awards, and gold key winners are being featured in the lobby of the Columbia Center for the Arts in February. Lanterns made from recycled materials by Matt Gerlick’s students will also be on display.

February 7, 2018 midnight read more..

Tuesday, February 6


MCEDD Spotlight: Pita Pit

Cheramy Rovianek was ready for a new challenge that would keep her connected to the community and allow her to work with young people. That challenge: Opening Hood River's Pita Pit.

February 6, 2018 6 a.m. read more..

December Building Permits

Companies and homeowners are building or remodeling throughout the Columbia Gorge. Here is a quick look at commercial and residential building permits.

February 6, 2018 6 a.m. read more..

Saturday, February 3


The long and short guide to getting your item into the Hood River News

In recent weeks we’ve made a few subtle changes to our print version and given the website ( a crisp new look. In whatever form you read us, our continued hope is that readers will have little or no trouble finding us or finding out how to reach us, and make use of our services.

February 3, 2018 midnight read more..

The persistence of evil that humans do: it can’t happen here — or can it?

In a recent National Geographic article about good and evil (January 2018), the steps leading up to genocide are discussed. How do these horrors happen? The Armenians in Turkey, Jews in Nazi Germany, Cambodians slaughtering Cambodians in the killing fields, Rwanda tribal massacres, and ISIS atrocities world-wide, to name a few, in which hundreds of thousands or millions of people have been systematically exterminated.

February 3, 2018 midnight read more..

HRV robotics teams advance

Winners of last week’s First Tech Challenge (FTC) qualifier tournament were Hood River Valley High School teams Glasses Half Full and Duct Tape.

February 3, 2018 midnight read more..

County holds two sales tax hearings

As Hood River County prepares to ask voters for a two-percent sales and tourism tax, its elected board and staff will hold a pair of February hearings in which the public will get a chance to learn more and weigh in.

February 3, 2018 midnight read more..

‘Be There for The Gorge’ launches

Friends of the Columbia Gorge announced a $10,000 gift this week to support the launch of Oregon’s Kitchen Table’s “Be There for The Gorge” campaign. The planned six-week crowdfunding effort seeks to gather funds to help the U.S. Forest Service rebuild trails between Multnomah Falls and Angel’s Rest damaged in the 2017 Eagle Creek fire.

February 3, 2018 midnight read more..

Horizon girls winning streak ends at three

Before the Horizon girls basketball team traveled to South Wasco County on Jan. 30, they were on a three-game league winning streak and had moved to third place in the 1A-6 Big Sky League standings.

February 3, 2018 midnight read more..

The streak continues for Horizon

The Horizon Boys basketball team seems to have found their groove as they’ve now won four straight games and currently sit at second place in the 1A-6 Big Sky League standings with an 8-2 record.

February 3, 2018 midnight read more..

FISH donation

FISH Food Bank Treasurer Becky Bugge leaves Wednesday night’s Hood River County School District board meeting at May Street School with an unusual trove.

February 3, 2018 midnight read more..

Friday, February 2

Four to Go: Feb. 3 edition

A new domestic violence support group with Rebecca Hunter, MSW, in partnership with Helping Hands Against Violence, meets on Tuesdays at noon and is free and open to women survivors. “Continue healing in a group of women who will understand and empower you.” For location and more information, call 541-400-0186.

February 2, 2018 1:27 p.m. read more..

Thursday, February 1

Hood River restaurants step up to help homeless

An innovative program to feed guests of the Warming Shelter was recently launched by Hood River restaurants. Over a dozen participating food establishments are now donating meals to Hood River Shelter Services, also known as the Warming Shelter, and the program is becoming a win-win for several reasons.

February 1, 2018 11:43 a.m. read more..

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