Lavender Daze blooms this July 16-17


News editor

July 13, 2005

It’s easy for Joel and Diane Orcutt to show off.

Hood River Lavender Farm, their growing business of three years, is in full bloom.

To celebrate, the Orcutts are hosting the first Lavender Daze Festival at the farm, 3801 Straight Hill Rd., Hood River, on July 16-17.

Music, classes, food, and the aroma of 45 varieties of lavender will be there for all to enjoy. There is no admission to the festival, which runs 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. each day.

“We wanted to give people something new to enjoy in the valley, in addition to the fruit,” Joel Orcutt said. “The views at the farm are outstanding — magnificent views of Mount Adams in one direction and Mount Hood in the other.”

Even without the mountain views, there is splendor to be found — in the lavender itself.

“It’s just real inviting to see and smell,” Orcutt said. “It’s not just the aroma, but the beauty of it all.” Amid the two acres of lavender is a wildflower garden.

Visitors may cut a bunch of lavender (for a fee), take free classes such as how to make a lavender wand, or enjoy local food and music.

Sugar Daddies, Savant Garde, ThEclipse and other musicians will perform. Hood River Taqueria will sell food on site, and other local vendors will be available — including temporary, spray-on tattoos by Dave Smith.

Skooter the miniature horse (profiled in the June 22 Hood River News) is scheduled to be there, and the Orcutts also plan an aviary along with other animals for children to enjoy, along with face painting.

For information call (888) LAV-FARM or go to:

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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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