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Kirby Neumann-Rea

Stories by Kirby

Kids relish ‘Shop With A Cop’

The rules of Shop With A Cop are two: no air-soft guns and all video games and movies purchased must be age appropriate.

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The Last Lantern

Paper lanterns enthralled the crowd at the Dec. 13 downtown holiday tree lighting event, but it will be the last year the Chamber of Commerce sets the flame-lit ornaments aloft, according to Chamber Executive Director Mike Glover.

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Vagabond Lodge grows, stays connected to ‘50s origins

Vagabond Motel only looks like a classic motor court motel like those popular in the 1950s.

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Eagles score early, but Scots prevail

Turnovers plague HRV in home opener; team looks to bounce back at Sandy tourney

The Hood River Valley High School boys basketball team started the 2013-14 season Tuesday with steals, quick baskets, defensive rebounds and an 11-3 lead over the visiting, and favored, David Douglas Scots.

Lions give 2013 grants

Tuesday’s 14th opening of a community checkbook — Hood River Lions Foundation annual grants — distributed a total of $48,912 in gifts.

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The Best Christmas pageant ever: Hilarity, with a message

As CAST reprises ‘Best Christmas Pageant Ever,’ stage mom in 2009 becomes director for 2013 show

Chaos within mayhem: sounds like any Christmas experience, right?

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City plans new parking survey

Mayor calls for methodical, permanent parking use monitoring system

The city will get the data first before making any big decisions on parking.

ROUND TABLE: Walkin’ man Dave Phelps quietly retires

And the walkin’ man walks …”

Blood drive’s lucky 26

The Thanksgiving blood drive at Hood River Elks yielded 82 total pints of blood donated, just shy of the goal of 84, said coordinator Margo Parker.

Alert senior detects scam in ‘Fruit Packer’ call

Sheriff: Never give personal information on the phone.

Wilma Packer said, “I’m glad I stopped to think,” after an apparent scam phone call on Tuesday morning.

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The Subterranean puts new on the old

Chris Lynn opens restaurant in former North Oak space

Old is new and new is old at one of Hood River’s newest restaurants, and Chris Lynn is back in the business.

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Scenic, yet slick

Friday weather causes numerous accidents, some events canceled

The winter weather is forecast to continue this weekend with frigid temperatures falling into the single-digits in some areas.

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Nazarene Church hosts Drive-through Nativity

Don’t let a few pipes along the road keep you from making the Nativity pilgrimage this weekend.

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Downtown prepares for holidays

State Street will be cleaned up and ready for Friday night

State Street should “clean up real good.”

Holidays bring a long list of music events

December is music month in Hood River.

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The aftermath: Bin burn investigation continues, DFG leader thanks firefighters

Authorities are asking for help from anyone with information on the nighttime Nov. 25 fire at Diamond Fruit Growers in Odell.

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Plates and Bowls: Two ways that ceramics serve arts education, FISH food bank

Looking for a unique holiday gift that helps art programs in Hood River County?

Dee man arrested on meth, endangerment charges

A 44-year-old Dee man was arrested on drug charges Nov. 27 in a multi-agency operation that culminated an investigation by Hood River County Sheriff’s Office.

A different display: Columbia Gorge Hotel hangs a new, musical, set of lights

Call it a holiday rarity: a Christmas tradition that’s actually delayed a week or so.

HRVHS French Week celebrates culture

Students broke bread together at HRVHS just before the Thanksgiving break, but it had nothing to do with pilgrims.

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Kaleidoscope: A Snapshot in Time

Museum exhibit reveals the photography and adventurous spirit of Alva Day

“Bear Wallow, 12:50, 11-6-39”: so says the caption on the Autographic camera image of a smiling man clothing a hat while standing in a field. The rustic, plain-faced image befits its subject, the photographer Alva Day (born in Colorado, 1887, died in Oregon in 1955, and buried at Idlewilde Cemetery).

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Ryan dials back debt dispute with $200K payment

City Council action: Schultz hired as new interim manager

The debt dispute between the City of Hood River and Ryan’s Juice is all but over.

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Massive blaze destroys thousands of empty bins at Diamond Fruit

A pillar of fire rose over Odell Monday night as flames devoured 10,000 plastic fruit bins on Diamond Fruit property at AGA Road and Odell Highway. Firefighters came from every department in the valley, deploying 12 tenders and engines including the Tower 3 from Hood River Fire Department. The fire was reported at about 7:20 p.m. “It looked like a Roman candle, flames sticking straight up,” said Pat Roy, who lives on AGA Road directly across from the fire.

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‘Empty Bowls’ help fill food banks

Students make artful bowls for unique take-home meal Thursday

Soup’s on, and every bite’s delicious and every bowl is different.

Opening day crowd helps ring in Bealls store

Large-scale department store back on Heights for first time in 13 years

The first thing to know about Thursday’s grand opening of Bealls store in Hood River is that nearly 100 people waited in 40-degree weather, some slipping into the foyer for warmth, to be the first in the doors of Hood River’s newest store at 9 a.m.

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‘Puff Factory’ planned for CL

Port of Cascade Locks, Odell orchardist want to build freeze-dried fruit plant by 2015

CASCADE LOCKS – An Odell orchardist is looking at a Cascade Locks location for her new business, “The Puff Factory,” a 26,000-square-foot plant that will use a unique freeze-drying technique to transform Hood River fruit into snack products. Plans are to employ 30-50 people.

CL port plans downtown, sports center projects

CASCADE LOCKS — As innovative as The Puff Factory would be (article, A1) two other development proposals by the Port of Cascade Locks are even closer to reality, according to Gary Rains, the Port’s economic development director.

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Mt Hood Independent Film Festival draws 1,100 visits

Last minute technical difficulties did not seem to put a damper on the start of the second annual Mt. Hood Independent Film Festival at the Columbia Center for the Arts.

Local merchants get behind Fashion Gala

Friday’s annual event benefits Christmas Project

Your turn, Fashionistas.

ROUND TABLE: A year of classical music heads to fine finale

In March I wrote a column, “Rock On, John Field,” about the start of my year-long regimen of limiting my active musical listening to classical music and its cousins. Irishman John Field wrote energetic music that, while 225 years old, just rawks.

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Time to feed FISH

Food banks need donations as demand rises for the holidays

The cupboards aren’t bare at FISH, at least not yet.

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Generators stolen in smash-and-grab at Sheppard’s

Someone used a rock to smash the front window of Sheppard’s early Wednesday morning.

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A slice of local life -- Nannette Mortensen: Cutting with care

Surviving cancer helped Nannette Mortensen craft a new mission statement for her life.

Mt. Hood Indie Film Fest returns

Three days, five screens, 100-plus films, with special 3-D segment

Call it “Something for Everyone.”

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Sen. Thomsen will run for re-election

Democrat Robert Bruce of Sandy will oppose HR Republican

Chuck Thomsen announced his plans Wednesday to run for a second term as Dist. 26 State Senator.

Dia de los Muertos

St. Francis House, Gallery 301 celebrate Day of the Dead Nov. 1, 2

Dia de Los Muertos, the dignified patrón of American Halloween, will be celebrated this weekend in Hood River and Odell.

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‘Reach 4 It’ opens Friday at HRVHS

Original, large-cast musical probes our ‘Idol’ obsessions

Fame and friendship and aspiration and disappointment take on large roles in “Reach 4 It!” an original musical production by the Hood River Valley High School performing arts department, opening Friday at Bowe Auditorium at HRVHS.

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Winemakers speak Friday at ‘Crush’

View works about wines, hear vintners talk about liquid art

“The Crush” exhibit concludes this weekend with a conversation about one of the Gorge’s favorite topics: wine.

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Harvest Fest Weekend Sampler 2013

Folks enjoy pumpkins, choose fruit from overflowing bins, and munch on pies throughout a sun-drenched Hood River valley autumn weekend

Large crowds of people having fun.

Fruit, fun, and crowds abound

Pumpkins turned from orange to every other color during at Harvest Weekend.

Man robs Comfort Suites hotel

A man wearing a ski mask tied up the clerk and made off with cash from the till at a West Cascade hotel in the early morning hours on Oct. 11.

ROUND TABLE: Local pears and apples are goodness as basic as ABC

Don’t be alarmed: The hum from my basement in coming weeks is just my bank of fruit dryers.

HR boy recovers well from skull surgery

Adrian Metta waves with his fingers spread like flower petals, his round-eyed smile and adoring look at his mother and father as typical as any 11-month-old making sense of the world.

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Kaleidoscope: Feeling right at home...

Exchange students are too busy to be homesick

All are European, all are accomplished English speakers, and they hail from a range of places, from small villages to a capital city.

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Mt. Defiance facility fills a fruit storage need

ODELL — Mt. Defiance Cold Storage is the new kid on the fruit block.

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Hood River County Library turns 100

History books and period tales are easy to find at the library, and on Friday it looked like many of the people there had stepped out of one of those stories.

Hood River, Cascade Locks ports pledge greater cooperation

Gorge Commission urges agencies to exert political muscle as a region

The commissioners of the ports of Cascade Locks and Hood River met jointly for the first time Wednesday at Cascade Locks City Hall.

$700k boost is a ‘good challenge’

Legislation gives $100 million to Oregon schools, HR County excited about its slice of the pie

On the road and in a changing space, Hood River County School District board of directors met Wednesday and heard about impacts out of Salem along with local cooperative efforts at the school.

Odell author finds success with his first e-book

Randy Fox’s ‘Dust Pan Girl’ proves popular on Amazon with readers of adult thrillers

It may be an e-book, but it’s still a page-turner.

Air Guitar rocks on

Staff remember — and repeat — glory days

Shortly after its birth as a sideshow, Air Guitar evolved into the main event.