Jones posts three top 20 times at NW Sectionals

Youth swimming sensation Erin Jones made tidal waves at the March 22-23 Northwest Zone Age Group Sectionals, held in Federal Way, Wash.

Jones, 11, of White Salmon, Wash., posted three top-20 finishes against a field of swimmers from seven states: Oregon, Washington, Hawaii, Alaska, Idaho, Montana and Wyoming.

She also posted personal bests in each of her six events and continued to establish herself as one of the most promising swimmers to come out of the Hood River Valley youth swim program.

“Erin simply tore up the pool at Sectionals,” coach Shelly Rawding said. “She’s a real competitor, and I think that’s what has set her apart the past couple years.”

Rawding explained that Jones was so focused last weekend that she finished a couple heats tied to the hundredth of a second.

Her most notable time drops were five seconds in the 500 free (6:03.80, 14th place), four seconds in the 200 free (2:17.45, 17th place), and three seconds in the 100 breast (1:20.48, 17th place).

Jones posted additional finishes in the 50 free (29.22 seconds, 28th place), 200 IM (2:37.77, 30th place), and 50 fly (33.05 seconds, 36th place).

Jones, a sixth grader at Henkle Middle School, will continue to swim for the Hood River Valley youth team throughout the summer. Rawding said she is also starting to think about next January’s state All-Star meet.

“She hasn’t qualified yet, but it’s a meet I think she’s set her sights on,” Rawding said. “She has constantly been improving her times and I think she can get there.”

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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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