Wildflower Cafe blooms in Mosier

MOSIER -- Suzi Conklin and Mark Czerniack just moved to Mosier in mid-June, but already they have made themselves a welcome part of the small Gorge town.

This month, the husband and wife team will be opening Mosier's first full-time eating establishment in the past 10 years -- the Wildflower Cafe.

The menu will feature many of Suzi's recipes, along with selected favorites from her grandmothers. The Wildflower Cafe will be a place where "people can hang out and talk over a cup of coffee and a piece of pie."

Situated on the corner of Second Avenue and Main Street, the Wildflower holds a special spot in Mosier. A commercial spot.

"There isn't very much commercial land in Mosier," explained Mark. "We came out looking for land three years ago and that is how we found Mosier.

"We thought it was a great little town, but it had no place to eat. We talked with a real estate agent, but even she said commercial property in Mosier didn't come available very often."

Outside of the Mosier School greeting visitors on the West side of town, just a handful of small businesses including a gas station make up the rest of downtown Mosier.

But as luck would have it, three weeks later a piece of property was put on the market. Mark and Suzi drove out that day and made an offer.

The offer was accepted and plans began for the Mosier eatery.

It's a far cry from Suzi's former job of sales manager at Will Vinton Studios in Portland, where Claymation was developed.

Czerniak's background in sustainable energy is what led the two to Mosier to look at Daniel Dancer's development.

But they were ready to leave Portland and try something new. Already they have doubled the business in downtown Mosier, Czerniak joked.

The land where the Wildflower is being built used to hold a small house. In a neighborly gesture, Czerniak and Conklin sold the cabin to Mosier community activist Gay Jervey for $1.

Jervey moved the house down the street two blocks to another Main Street location, where it became the Fairydell Store. The opening of the store and the Wildflower Cafe nearly doubles the number of businesses in downtown Mosier.

"Everybody has done something. Gay painted the front doors. There were special drill bits made and custom welding done by others," said Mark. "It's been really nice."

After nearly six years of wanting to open a cafe, the couple hopes to have the Wildflower ready for opening just prior to Thanksgiving.

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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 www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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