Fair dinner honors troops


John and Kathy Alley of Hood River enjoyed their first Canned Corn Meal on a vacation to Colorado and decided the culinary feast would be fun to share with family and friends.

The Alleys were provided with that opportunity when the Hood River County Fair Board of Directors decided to dedicate opening night of the 2010 fair to military families.

Clara Rice, director of the fair, said the Canned Corn Meal is reminiscent of dinners served to soldiers at mess halls during World War II.

The Alleys will supervise the preparation of vegetables and sausage in milk cans and be assisted by members of the fair board and Gorge Heroes Club. The food will then be placed in a trough at 6 p.m. on opening night and people will be allowed to select their favorite items.

Hood River Juice Company is providing the beverage that accompanies dinner and GHC is serving fruit cobbler a la mode.

All veterans can purchase dinner for half-price at $5 per ticket. The cost for other community members is $10 and proceeds will be donated to GHC. The local troop support group sends care packages to men and women serving in the combat zones of Iraq and Afghanistan.

Rice said soldiers from the Hood River Armory will be given a complimentary meal and their children will receive free ride bracelets on that Wednesday (details in sidebar below). That offer has also been extended to soldiers from The Dalles Armory.

“The Guard from this area is deploying to Iraq soon and we thought it was a very important time to honor all of those who have served, or are serving, our country,” said Rice.

SFC. Gary Norris, who oversees operations from the Hood River Armory, has arranged for a display of military vehicles and equipment that will complement the evening.

“We are humbled by this support and our soldiers are very much looking forward to this event,” said Norris.


-- Godfrey the Magician will perform during dinner

-- A special program to honor military personnel will take place at 7 p.m.

-- A brief message will be delivered by Hood River County Commission Chair Ron Rivers

-- Perry Cole, director of the Mid-Columbia Community Choir, will sing

-- Western Antique Aeroplane & Automobile Museum will also have vintage vehicles on display and perform a flyover if winds permit.

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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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