Parks director offers Barrett Park overview

Hood River Valley Parks and Recreation District is in the permitting stage for improvements on the 31.4-acre Barrett Park property. This development will help meet the growing recreational needs of the community.

The Park District has applied for a local government grant. If funding is awarded, development on the Barrett Park could begin as early as this fall.

Phase 1 will provide 11 acres of open play fields, biking and walking trails, community garden spots, mountain bike skills area and needed parking and access.

Phase 2 will include picnic shelters, a playground area, bocce ball courts, a remote control flier area and dog parks.

Barrett Park land was purchased in 2007 with assistance from a $325,800 grant through the local government grant program.

The Hood River County Health Department, through a collaboration of County and nonprofit agencies, did a health impact assessment on the Barrett property.

The following benefits of community parks were highlighted.

n Improve health and wellness, build self-esteem, provide alternatives to self-destructive behavior, reduce stress and provide opportunities for learning.

n Build stronger families, enhance community spirit, reduce crime and promote ethnic and cultural harmony.

n Protect natural resources and open space areas, enhance air and water quality, reduce congestion, and protect wildlife habitat.

n Attract business relocation and expansion, contribute to healthy and productive work environment, attract tourist and retirees and enhance real estate values.

The main categories of park features desired by the community included:

n Open play fields

n Trails

n All-ages play and exercise features

n A community garden and community gathering spaces

If you would like details contact the Park District at 541-386-5720 or


As the above benefits show, this park will positively impact all citizens of our community.

Lori Stirn, director of Hood River Valley Parks and Recreation, also serves on Healthy Active Hood River County or HAHRC.

The coalition was formed to promote physical activity, healthy eating and tobacco-free spaces. The next meeting will be May 15, 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Providence Hood River Memorial Hospital in the board room.


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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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