Top local talent turns out for pool tourney

Guy Whigham of Trout Lake won first place and $165 at the first-ever Mae Barsky Billiards Challenge Saturday at Horsefeathers Brewery in Hood River.

Kasey Clark of White Salmon took second place ($65) and Hood River’s Scott McGregor took third ($35) in the double-elimination mixed-format tournament, which featured 9-ball on the winner’s side and 8-ball on the “one-loss side.” Eric Benson, also of Hood River, won fourth place and $35.

“I have been very impressed by the quality of billiards being played in the Gorge,” said Horsefeathers house professional Cristy Barsky, who earned a fifth/sixth place tie with Dan London.

“There are a lot of pro- and semi-pro level players in this area and winning an event like this is no small accomplishment,” she said.

Barsky came to Hood River from Albuquerque, N.M., last summer, and has become an active figure in promoting the sports of billiards and chess in the Gorge. She organized the Hood River Billiards and Chess Club, which meets Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays at Horsefeathers; and also teaches weekly classes to women and beginners.

“I started the club not just so people would have a place to quality place to play pool, but also to offer a learning environment,” she said. “We want to provide a place to play that’s not just tavern pool.”

Barsky said she believed Saturday’s event was the first all-day pool tournament held in Hood River since the 1950s. The 14 participants each paid a $20 entry fee, which comprised the pot, and contributed an additional fee to participate in the skills challenge. Clark won the accuracy contest and Jon Gerde of Hood River won the break contest.

The $45 collected will benefit the Rotary Traffic Light Fund. Since its inception in October, the HR Billiards and Chess Club has also raised funds for Red Cross disaster relief, and it plans to donate money to a college fund for the late Steve Monahan’s children.

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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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