Letters - June 25

Connect Cities

I’m new to these parts (been here only six weeks), and I am loving it here! In particular, I loved First Friday June 6 in Hood River.

Question: Why can’t there be a “Fun Friday” every week? Why only three for the entire summer?

I am a storyteller raised in the Acadian (Cajun) culture of Louisiana, and there, the fun-loving folks have a live band, a street dance, and storytelling every Friday in both the spring and fall.

I hope that, eventually, Hood River, White Salmon, Bingen, Mosier, Lyle, and whatever other communities want to join combine to form the River Cities Alliance (RCA) in order to promote outdoor celebrations in the “bridge crossing area” of this section of the mid-Gorge, where the sun from the east and the rain from the west meet to form the perfect climate for many outdoor celebrations all summer long!

We are truly blessed here, and have a great reason to celebrate a great summer every Friday, not just once a month!

Perhaps an outdoor dance can be held in a different city each week, say, Hood River the first Friday, White Salmon the second, Bingen the third, Lyle the fourth, and Mosier the fifth Friday (when there is a fifth one) or whatever arrangement can be agreed upon.

C’mon local leaders, allons dancer! (Let’s dance!). I volunteer to coordinate such an effort if an elected official will simply contact me!

Joe Paris

White Salmon

Remember peace

Peace on Earth — remember that? Peace on Earth, good will towards all men. Do these words mean anything to anybody? Is it Peace on Earth as long as I can fill my gas guzzling 12-mpg Ford Expensive or Chevy Sub-division? Is it Peace on Earth unless it’s those other dark-skinned, funny-speaking men, women and children? What difference does it make whether Saddam gasses 4,000 Kurds with nerve gas (supplied by the U.S. government in the 1980s) or 2,000 (the latest figure) innocent men, women and children are killed who just happened to be in the way of a U.S. bullet or cluster bomb? A man of peace doesn’t go invade another country without the support of the rest of the world. An egotistical bully (who happens to be in the oil business) with too many war toys does.

I’m no Christian but I believe it says in the Bible, they were hungry so I gave them food, they needed shelter so I gave them shelter. You catch more bees with honey — why don’t we try and help these developing countries with an open hand? The U.N. sanctions against Iraq killed 400,000 children under the age of 5 — a lotta good that did. And we should be very afraid of Fidel Castro in Cuba. I’m sure that the sanctions against Cuba have produced ... what? Not much. Why don’t we open the commerce with Cuba and help them — the people will see that democracy works.

It would be interesting to hear you preachers and priests and spiritual leaders talk this Saturday or Sunday about “Peace on Earth.” As long as it’s their 2,000 that die in Iraq or a million Vietnamese 35 years ago, the U.S.A. agression list goes on and on. Is it OK? Peace on Earth — walk the walk and talk the talk.

Stephen J. Curley

Hood River

Springs map stays

Dave Riley stated in his June 18 “Another Voice” in the Hood River News that Mt. Hood Meadows no longer seeks to develop destination resort facilities on private land overlaying the state’s accepted boundary for the Crystal Springs water district recharge area.

However, Mr. Riley also stated that Meadows disagreed with the boundary and had asked the Oregon Health Division to review it. I write to inform you that the Health Division has notified the District that it does not intend to make any changes to the boundary. The map presented by the District to the Planning Commission and the public constitutes the final certified delineation of the drinking water protection area for Crystal Springs.

Bob Duddles, superintendent

Crystal Springs Water Dist.

Right to choose

As I read the letters to the editor on June 14 I came upon one titled “Click for safety” which irritated me greatly. Not the fact that we should buckle up but that as a nation we have given up the right to choose. When does protecting us from ourselves stop? If it doesn’t stop soon they will be telling us when we can make love, who we can marry, how many kids we can have, or what job we can have. I thought America was the land of freedom of choice. Not lately. It is my life and I have the right to choose what I want to do with it. If I want to ride my motorcycle without my helmet to feel the wind in my hair or leave my seat belt unbuckled that should be my choice, not someone else’s. Let those who are afraid put them on. The day it can absolutely without a doubt be proven that seat belts, helmets and such things will save some one else’s life then I will consider it.

Wendell Ellis

Hood River

Dancing delights

I just want to say that the show put on this past weekend by the Columbia Gorge Dance Academy was incredible. From the choreography to the dancing it was unsurpassed. Realizing of course I have three kids (two girls and one boy) dancing so I am somewhat prejudiced.

Having three kids in this wonderful school and program though has allowed for me to see how dance can affect a child’s life. Susan Sorensen, Nancy Clement, Theresa Mason, Susan Shepherd, Charlotte Arnold and Susie Zee-Mears have all had a positive influence on my kids and every other kid I have seen at the school. They have built self-confidence in my kids as well as others. They teach but they also allow the kids to truly have fun. All the kids love these guys and they love to go to class. I am not sure if people in Hood River fully understand the jewel they have here with the Academy.

The show itself is of high quality and you have to love a production where the audience gets into cheering for the players. All the hooting and hollering made you think you were at a Rocky Horror Picture Show screening. The show was just flat fun to watch. It sure beats the shows where everyone sits on their hands.

After watching these kids dance, I have no doubt that some of them will go much further. As for us earthbound decrepit ex-college football players, we can only watch in jealousy as these dancers make moves that put the rest of us to shame. Lastly, Susan Sorensen, thank you.

Richard Sassara

Hood River

Tap beer tax

As a student at Hood River Valley High School I have studied the negative impact of beer on teens.

I think you should tap the beer tax as a source of money to fund alcohol prevention and treatment for teens and adults.

Increasing the cost of beer will reduce the number of 15-24 year olds who die in car crashes.

We lost a classmate last year in Hood River in an alcohol related car crash. Thank you for taking the time to read my letter.

Maria Gomez

Hood River

Latest stories

Latest video:

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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