A mural soars at Wy’east

June 29, 2005

The eagle has landed at Wy’east Middle School.

This bird seems to soar with its wings spanning 16 feet, but its aerie will be on the east side of the school gymnasium.

“I think it turned out well,” a modest Chad Mayo said.

He is the artist who, in the first three weeks of June, turned a blank wall into an image of a giant bird soaring before a finely-detailed Mt. Hood and over a dark green line of trees.

“It came out great,” said painter Tracy Wickwire, who donated many hours to the background and surrounding colors, along with painter Dennis Keiffer.

Wy’east principal Ed Drew said the mural “gives a really welcoming feel to the front of our school.”

Mayo sees the mural as a true team effort.

“I like the idea of community art, when people can drive by and see it,” Mayo said. “It’s not in a gallery or some place where not everyone can see it. It’s here for everybody.”

To pay for the $5,000 mural project, students held fundraisers during 2004-05 and collected community donations.

“A lot of kids are excited about it. You hear them talking about it,” said Wickwire, adding that his nephew, Nick, an eighth-grader at Wy’east, “is pretty proud of it.”

“It’s something we can give to the kids. It’s worth every penny,” Wickwire said.


Mayo, who also has a nephew at Wy’east, Matthew Ramsey, studied at Seattle Art Institute, and has shown his work in galleries but the mural project was his largest work.

“I love to work with this much paint. It’s so much more exciting to me. I’ve never painted an eagle before,” said Mayo, whose wife, Amira Malik, is an art teacher at Cascade Locks School.

Mayo worked from a small photograph, adding detail from his own imagination.

“When you’re working with something three inches wide you have to elaborate. You kind of use it as a template,” he said.

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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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