Earth Day parade, fair this Saturday

A month of Earth Day-related activities continues this weekend with a parade and a street fair the centerpiece on Saturday.

The Columbia Gorge Earth Day Street Fair will take place on Oak Street between Front and First streets. Booths will be set up and there will be speakers and live music throughout the day. The traditional Earth Day Salmon Pageant and the Procession of the Species parade will be downtown.

The Street Fair runs from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Stage events include music by Wild River from 10-11 a.m., Jamba Marimba Band from 11-noon; Mexican Folk Dancers from noon-12:15 p.m.; and Cosmos Worth and Company from 12:15 to 1 p.m.

The Salmon Pageant goes from 1 to 1:30 p.m., followed by the Procession of Species parade, 1:30 to 2:30.

Dovetailing Saturday with the downtown events is “Children, Creativity and Community in Troubled Times,” an event for toddlers through kids in 5th grade, from 2:30 to 5 p.m. at Riverside Community Church, 4th and State streets.

The event includes a petting zoo, art projects, storytime, a “community sing” and refreshments. Kids must be accompanied by an adult. The event is sponsored by Bravissimo! Music and Art Camp in cooperation with Hood River County Community Education, Providence Hood River Memorial Hospital, Riverside Church and Soul Cafe.

Earth Day events continue on Sunday with a community forestry panel discussion, 1 p.m. at Jackson Park. The topic is “Whose forests are these?” The discussion will culminate in an informal tour of county forests and a discussion of a “model” forest. Also on Sunday is Children’s Park birthday work party, 2 to 4 p.m. at the park, 9th and Eugene streets (details on page A2).

On April 29 a free Community Education class is offered in on “Sustainable residential development,” at Hood River Valley High School, 6:30 p.m. in Room H13.

On May 3 a Mid-Columbia Enviro House Tour is scheduled from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Registration will be at the Windance parking lot, where maps will be available. Cost is $10 per car. All proceeds to benefit the Columbia Gorge Earth Center.

More information about all the Earth Day-related events can be found on the Web site of the Columbia Gorge Earth Center at

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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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