‘Fair Well’


News staff writer

August 2, 2006

The deserted midway and empty fairgrounds in Odell Monday morning stood in sharp contrast to the bustling activity seen from Wednesday through Saturday during the 2006 fair.

“Awesome,” said Hood River County Fair Manager Clara Rice.

She said that Saturday’s gate sales were probably the biggest turnout for the fair with the draw of country-western singer Josh Turner.

“His sound man, his manager and I looked over the crowd and estimated 5,000 for the concert alone,” Rice said. “But even with that the carnival and food vendors were still busy.”

One of those who turned out for Turner’s performance and presence was fan Tracy McCafferty of Hood River. She stood front and center snapping away pictures with her cell phone as he launched into his first set.

Rice said in contrast to 2005 when the fair office had vendors shut down about 2 a.m. on Sunday, many of this year’s food vendors ran out of food.

“They were out of food at midnight (Saturday) so had to shut down,” she said.

That included customers queued up at Carnitas Michoacan, where Tone Diaz chopped meat with a cleaver.

Rice said the fair went smoothly, with only minor incidents reported by the sheriff’s office. She also said the fair owes a great deal of thanks for how smoothly things went to the sheriff’s office and all of the Lions Clubs involved in helping to park cars.

The number of local exhibits entered overall was down, a fact that Rice attributed to the triple-digit temperatures on the day of entries. The weather cooled considerably by the weekend, which aided those 4-H and FFA members during the four-hour auction Friday night.

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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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