Sternwheeler Days Festival ready to roll

CASCADE LOCKS — The 28th Annual Sternwheeler Days Festival returns to Cascade Locks for three days of entertainment, food, music and activities, Friday through Sunday, beginning each day at 6 a.m. at Marine Park.

Originally known as Portage Days, the Festival’s name was changed to Sternwheeler Days to celebrate the Sternwheeler Columbia Gorge, an authentic triple-decker sternwheeler owned by the Port of Cascade Locks. This year marks the Sternwheeler Columbia Gorge’s 20th anniversary.

The Bridge of the Gods’ CB club will serve breakfast and hamburgers in the Park all day long, each day of the festival from 6 a.m. until closing. A Mountain Man encampment, as well as an “1856” Army Men’s Regiment encampment, will be posted on Thunder Island. Food and craft booths will open at 10 a.m. and 25-cent bingo will be played from noon to 8 p.m. The Sternwheeler Columbia Gorge will offer excursion tours at noon and 3 p.m. Rates are $15 for adults and $9 for children.

At 7:30 a.m. on Saturday, a Run/Walk across the Bridge of the Gods will raise money for the Cascade Locks High School Track Team, with a $1 suggested donation. One lane of traffic will be closed on the bridge to allow walkers and runners a safe and memorable crossing. Also on Saturday, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., the Festival will host a free antique appraisal in the Port Pavilion. Two items per person will be appraised at no charge. The Geezers will provide live music throughout the day Saturday and Sunday.

The Sternwheeler Days Festival Parade begins at 11 a.m. on Saturday. The tenth annual Salmon Bake will also take place on Saturday, from 1 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., sponsored by the Columbia Gorge Lions.

On Sunday at 9:30 a.m., a special Church in the Park service will be held featuring gospel singer Charlie Walker.

More than 40 food and craft booths will be on hand at Marine Park, along with live music, bingo, and lots of children’s activities including pony rides, petting zoo, kiddy train rides, “The Bounce,” mini racers and games.

For a complete listing of Sternwheeler Days events call 800-643-1354.

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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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