United Way holds campaign kickoff Aug. 31

August 27, 2005

The annual Hood River County United Way Kickoff event will be Aug. 31 from 5 to 7 p.m. at Stonehedge Gardens Restaurant, 3405 Cascade Drive, in Hood River.

“This year’s event will be a wonderful start, signaling the beginning of our annual campaign on Sept. 1,” said Campaign Chair Jamie Guth. “With so many new and exciting components to the event, there should be something for everyone to enjoy.”

Available at the event this year will be the locally famous “Men of Hood River” 2006 calendar. Many of the “Calendar Men” will be in attendance, and for a small donation will autograph their featured month’s photo. “We’ll also have plenty of Ugly Local T-Shirts for sale,” said Board Member Leslie Cogswell. “They are always a hit, and a lot of fun.”

In addition to providing the facilities, Stonehedge is also providing food and refreshments, as are Divots, China Gorge, the Mesquitery and Food Service of America. Beverages will be provided by Elliott Glacier Brewery and Pheasant Valley Winery. Entertainment will be by Tony Smiley.

This year’s kickoff event also includes a silent auction, featuring an outstanding assortment of goods, excursions and events. Auction items include dining for six at Abruzzo’s Italian Grill, an overnight stay and round of golf at Skamania Lodge, a bicycle from Discover Bicycles, a season ski pass to Mt. Hood Meadows, white-water rafting trips, a Portland waterfront dinner and cruise, a Baja camping getaway, and many more.

Kickoff co-chair Pat Graham said he is pleased with the assortment of quality auction items. “We think we have something for everyone in terms of auction items. With the calendars, T-shirts, refreshments and entertainment, all for a very worthy cause, we think this year’s kickoff will be the best yet!”

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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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