Garage sale will benefit Teen Court

Teen Court advocates are seeking donations for a fundraiser garage sale on Aug. 25.

The event will take place from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. at 4099 Barrett Drive and proceeds will be used to pay for training costs associated with the juvenile program that is funded by grants.

"Teen court helps get the kids more involved in the community and make them more responsible and aware of what's going on around them," said Michelle Westfall, garage sale organizer.

She said people wanting to contribute toward the effort may drop quality used goods off at the above address or call her at 387-0106 to arrange for pickup.

Hood River started teen court almost three years ago, primarily for first time offenders. The youth program requires individuals to answer to their "peers" for crimes that include small theft, minor criminal mischief, traffic infractions for those under 16, possession of illegal substances, curfew violation and graffiti.

If convicted, these defendants have to serve at least once on the five to seven-member jury that is also made up of volunteer schoolmates. All potential jurors are given special training and a mock trial to learn how a legal proceeding works. Only two positions in teen court are held by adults: the jury adviser and the role of court administrator.

Unlike the regular court system, in teen court the jury listens to the court officer lay out the case and then each individual juror asks a specific question of the defendant. Although some sentences are mandatory for specific crimes, the jurors are often allowed to come up with creative punishments that include having perpetrators write letters of apology to their victim, requiring that they speak publicly on the detrimental effects of drinking and driving, or mandating that they make a collage with an anti-drug theme.

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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