Cycling Classic peddles for help

May 18

In only its third year in existence, the Mt. Hood cycling Classic, scheduled for June 2-5, has been boosted onto the prestigious National Racing Calendar (NRC).

The event is one of only 15 NRC stage races in the U.S. and is expected to bring in over 400 road bicycling racers from across the country and beyond to the Hood River Valley.

Hood River is by far the smallest city to host a race of such caliber this year. Event organizer Chad Sperry commented on Hood River's unique status for the NRC:

"We are the smallest host city on the NRC by a long ways but the residents and business people of Hood River have been incredibly supportive of the whole event.

It allows us to offer something unique to the racing circuit as far as a venue and we now have big time racing with small town charm and appeal."

The five-stage, 200-plus mile race encompasses riding from Panorama Point to Wahtum Lake, and everywhere between, with $20,000 in cash prizes.

Sure to please the crowds this year will be the Downtown Criterion Stage where racers will weave and veer their bikes around the steep hills and sharp corners of lower downtown Hood River.

Putting on a national caliber venue in Hood River has brought together dozens of local sponsors and volunteers. Organization, set-up, and take-down for the event takes a lot of coordination and effort.

Volunteers are being sought for jobs ranging from course attendants and medics to set-up, tear-down, and station manning.

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Anyone interested in helping support the now prestigious 2005 Mt. Hood Cycling Class is encouraged to contact Julie Wilson at Discovery Bicycles: 386-4820.

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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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