Monday, April 10, 2006
By RAELYNN RICARTE
News staff writer
March 18, 2006
A group of 8th-grade students from Tsuruta, Japan, will arrive March 25 for a week-long exchange with their American counterparts, but so far there are not enough host families to accommodate them, says Betty Carrithers of Hood River-Tsuruta Sister City.
“Our need for host families is urgent,” she wrote to the News. “Spring vacation is here for the week the Tsuruta students are here, and many of our potential host families have gone for their spring vacation.
“We had been hoping to place them with 8th-grade students, but with the situation as it is, any family who would consider hosting two Japanese students, age 14, please call.”
Also visiting will be Tsuruta’s mayor, Kenji Nakano, a junior high school teacher and a staff member from the town office.
Among the activities planned during their stay are a visit to the grave of the late Ray (Chop) Yasui, a short welcome at Hood River Middle School, and a tree planting ceremony on the school grounds for Tsuruta’s gift of two flowering cherry trees.
Hood River Sister City will provide activities for the students during their visit; they just need a place to stay, Carrithers says.
Those willing to open their homes are urged to call Sue Collins at 386-3027 or 386-6800.
Youth hosts are also invited along on the outings during spring break, Collins noted.
Please turn to page A9 for a photo of the visiting Japanese students and more about the Tsuruta-Hood River Sister City Program.
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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