Last week for Jackson Park events; on Saturday, bring on the Bugs

August 24, 2011

Will Jackson Park be Bug-infested on Saturday?

Not by bedbugs, but Beetles, as in Volkswagen.

In what will be a parade of sorts, "Movies in the Park" this week attracts what is hoped to be a legion of Bugs, the iconic car of "The Love Bug" fame. That's Saturday's movie, and sponsor Community Education is asking as many Bug owners as possible to bring their vehicles for a late-summer night of cars and entertainment, be the cars customized, original, souped-up or lovingly dented.

The VW Beetle, first made in Germany, later in the U.S., is a vehicle thoroughly adopted by American culture dating back to the 1960s, and lives on (though purists might differ) in the revitalized New Beetle, a redesign introduced in 1998.

History and opinions on design aside, Saturday's event will be a unique opportunity to celebrate "Herbie" and all his four-wheeled cousins.

If you have not yet attended Families in the Park (each Thursday in August), or the five-year-old tradition Movies in the Park, this week is your final chance in 2011. "Families" and "Movies" will need strong community support when they return in 2012. It's important to remember the businesses and community groups that sponsor the series and the individual events. (The shows are free but the weekly headliners are paid to perform.)

Kudos to director John Rust and the rest of his Community Ed for organizing these events. Visitors or first-timers to Hood River, upon seeing the park packed with people for a free event, regularly express amazement at what is a virtually unique community service.

Both "Movies" and "Families" are free, but here are some reminders about fully enjoying the event: There is no smoking in the park, and for the movies, for those down front should use low chairs or blankets to avoid blocking others' views. Also, our summer nights are getting cooler, so bring a layer of clothing or two.

Oh, and "bug repellent" is optional, but this Saturday, if you can, bring those Bugs!

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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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