Newspaper Archive of
Hells Canyon Journal
Halfway, Oregon
December 26, 2012     Hells Canyon Journal
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December 26, 2012

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SMALLTOWNPAPERS 217 WEST COTA STREET SHELTON WA 98584 0000 75 Per Copy Gift Tree Brightens Holidays for 30 Families Community generosity program," said Ralph Smead found an appropriate outlet of the Lions Club. "We also again this holiday season as need to acknowledge all the the Christmas Gift Tree, lo- help we get from the bank cated at the Halfway branch employees," said Smead. of US Bank and coordinated "They are as interested in the by the Halfway Lions Club success of the Gift Tree as the helped bring Christmas cheer Lions Club members are." to 30 local families. The Gift Tree is decorated "We want to thank mem- each year with colorful tags bers of the community at that suggest gifts needed by large and particularly the local families as well as sug- Idaho Power employees for gesteddonation amounts that their generosity in making are used to purchase gifts and the needed donations for this holiday dinners. Classified and All Other HCJ Deadlines Will Be Early this Week Due to the NewYear's Day material intended for publi- holiday falling on Tuesday, cation in the January 2 edi- which would ordinarilybe the tion of the paper will need to day when the Hells Canyonbein by 12:00 p.m. on Friday, Journal is printed, classified December 28 to accommodate ads, display ads and all other an earlier print deadline. Inflatable Robin? Photo by Sherrie Kvamme This robin may look like it had trouble pulling itself away from a holiday feast, but it's actually fluffed up against the cold. Last Wednesday was the coldest day so far in what has been a relatively mild winter. In response to the chilly temperatures, a flock of about 20 robins, seen in New Bridge, fluffed up their feath- ers to help keep warm. Most birds are able to flufftheir feathers, which creates additional air pockets around the bird's body, providing extra insulation and protec- tion against the cold. Off the Couch and On the Court: Volleyball Tournament Being anized The Pine Eagle High School volleyball team is host- ing a co-ed, three-on-three Volleyball Tournament to help raise money for summer camps and team expenses. For this tournament, co-ed teams must include two fe- males and one male. "We are hoping that there HELLS CANYON JOURNAL PO Box 646 Halfway, OR 97834 -742-7900 will be a few college kids, visiting alumni and locals who need to get off the couch and burn off some of those holiday calories," said PEHS volleyball coach and tourna- ment organizer, Jenny Gulick. "If there are enough en- tries, we will try to have two pools to keep the teams some- what even as to level of play, so even if you haven't played in years don't be shy - it's for a good cause and all for fun. The tournament is sched- uled for Saturday, December 29 beginning at 9:00 a.m. in the Pine Eagle Charter School gym. The cost to enter is $10 per person. To register or for more in- formation, please call Jenny GulicLk at 541-742-7929. Young'Carolers Photo by Hayley Sanders PRIMARY GRADE STUDENTS from Pine Eagle Charter School, rode downtown in Halfway last Thursday on two wagons that were furnished by David and Deborah Mader and pulled by the Maders' draft horses. The students then gathered in front of the Three Color Building, where they sang Christmas carols for the enjoyment of passers-by. The Year in Review: 2012 by Hayley Sanders got the official results of the In August, the Bureau suits and a failed recall. And of theHells Canyon Journal 2010 census. Halfway'spopu- of Land Management re- we haven't heard the last ofit lation had decreased to 288, leased an alternative route ... Anotheryearhascomeand while Richland's had in- for Idaho Power's controver- Changes: For Better or gone, and while the world creased a little to 155. sialBoardmantoHemingway Worse hasn't ended yet, between ThePineValleyFairAs- Power Line - right through elections, the Olympics, bur- sociation had a busy year. parts ofRichland and Sparta. The CityofHalfwayhad ricanesanddevastatingtrag- After finding out the grand- Several alternatives haveto increase its water rates. It edies, it did seem plenty crazy standatthePineValleyFair-been proposed, and BLM has also managed to clean out at times, ttere's a last look at grounds was in needof ex-said it plans to release their and organize 50 years of city what went on around the tensive repairs, they draft proposal in February, records hiding out in the at- Panhandle this past year. launched a massive fund- 2013. tic. raising drive on a very short Around Baker County SeniorMealsinHalfway Headlines and Hot timeline. But, talk about had to be cut by Community Topics from 2012 making it happen! Contrac- and Oregon Connections for budget rea- In January, the Pine tor, Donny Higgins, began Minimum wage went up sons. Fortunately, seniorscan Valley Recycling Committee work in July, planningto get to $8.80 an hour this year still get a hot meal at the launchedafundraisingeffort it done in time for Labor Day and the price of gas in Or- Pine Eagle School. to reconfigure the Recycling weekend. Thanks to all the egon was as high as $4.00 a Local Vietnam War Center after being told by the donors, hard work and sup- gallon, hero, John Noble Holcomb, City of Halfway's insurance port, the repairs were fin- Counterfeit cash was was finally memorialized at company they would have to ished andthis year's Fair and found circulating around sev- Holcomb Park. A sign honor- fence it off from the sewer Rodeo was one of the mosteral Eastern Oregon counties, ing Governor Joseph Gale lagoons or move. The fence successful and well-attended including Baker. A counter- and a kiosk describing the was completed in August. in years, feiting ring was later busted historyofRobinettewere also In March, the Forest It was a terrible year for and an individual was ar-installed in Eagle Valley. Service released the wildfires in the West dueto a rested in Baker City. The Bountiful Basket Wallowa-Whitman Forest dry spring and even drier The Baker County Jus- Food Co-op was started by Travel Management Plan summer. It began early, with tice Court was reduced toJulieStromerandvolunteers (TMP), proposingtoclose sev-' bigfiresin Colorado, and just half-time, and the Circuit in Richland, and continues to eral thousand miles of roads got worse from there. South- Court also reducedits hours, bring fresh produce to local in the forest. The USFS with- ern and central Oregon, along St. Alphonsus shut downparticipants every other drew the plan in April, as with large portions of Idaho, Pathway Hospice in Baker week. locals in Baker, Wallowa and were scorched by some oftheir City. After 25 years, Meriann Union Counties strongly op- largest fires ever, and will The Postal Service Digges sold Wild Bill's Res- posed the TMP. It later re- likely take years to fully re- threatened to close the taurant to Shorthorn own- leased a plan with even more cover. Pendleton Mail Processingers, Kurt andBrenda Grams, closures, then withdrew that In the Panhandle, smoke Facility. who keep busy running the one, also. inundated Pine and Eagle The Baker County two local restaurants. Wallowa-Whitman Forest valleys at times. There were Courthouse and 25 other Chiropractor, Bobby Supervisor, Monica Schwal- even a couple close calls with courthouses around the state Mower, retired and handed bach, eventuallyleft andwas a fire on Old Foothill Road in had to be evacuated because over the reigns of her local replaced by Kevin Martin, Richland and an early morn- of hoax bomb threats, practice to Pine Eagle grad, who was recently replaced by ing fire that woke up Oxbow The Baker 5J School Patrick Stromer. John Laurence. No word yet residents. Nobody got a re- District experienced no end Halfway Whimsical got on when the next version of prieve until cooler tempera- ofproblemswithdisputesbe-new paint and a redesign, the TMP will come out. tures and a little rain fell in tween board members, a and had a grand reopening in Halfway and Richland October. board member censure, law- Continued on page 10 Richland Council Approves Finance Report by Sherrie Kvamme of the Hells Canyon Journal The Richland City Council met on Monday December 17th, having rescheduled to ensure a quorum. Councilman Jim Harrison requested the council observe a moment of silence before the meeting started in memory and in honor of the children and adults who were killed in the Sandy Hook El- ementary School shooting tragedy. Mayor Gloria Wil- son led the council into a time of heartfelt and respectful si- lence. Financial Review Part of the Consent Agenda included approval of the city's annual financial review. On December 6 at Continued on page 3 Photo by Sherrie Kvamme CITY RECORDER PATTI CREWS (left) with Mayor Gloria Wilson, performed the official swearing in of council members Debi Duggan, Lawrence Brown and Ed Edwards.