Letters to the Editor for November 21, 2012



Make buildings bird friendly

Although I agree it’s good news that a combined National Guard Readiness/Workforce Training Center is being built on the Columbia Gorge Community College campus in The Dalles, I was disappointed to see that the architectural rendering of the large building shows that entire walls will be of clear glass. Because a goal of the project is to become an energy efficient “net zero” facility, I can guess that the glass walls are to be used for solar energy production. However, large windows are often death traps for birds. The American Bird Conservancy estimates that as many as one billion birds may be killed by collisions with windows every year in the U.S.

I sincerely hope that the architects involved in the project have already or will consult the publication called “Bird Friendly Building Design” found on the American Bird Conservancy website to mitigate the danger to birds that these glass walls will create.

Tracie Hornung


FISH needs help

In this season of Thanksgiving and feasting your editorial on How to Help was very timely. Many business, organizations, and individuals have provided generous support to the FISH food bank for over 40 years.

Tse of the food bank has increased 65 percent in the past 5 years. The four locations in Hood River County now serve over 400 families each month. As every family knows the cost of food has increased. FISH needs help in three areas:

One: Food and funding for food; Two: Funding to build a new food distribution center and warehouse; and Three: volunteers to assist in the fund raising and operations. We need a new facility that allows clients to wait out of the rain, a place that is handicapped accessible, and a place where volunteers can safely and efficiently stock and store the food with adequate cold storage, freezers and dry storage to serve all four locations in the county. Our goal in the next two months is to raise an additional $150,000 so that we can apply for large national and regional grants. Consider giving a donation in honor of friends and family instead of buying a gift this holiday season. Visit our website at www.fish-food-bank.com or call 541-490-1470 for more information. Building contributions can be sent to FISH, 1767 12th St. #147, Hood River,OR 97031.

Debby Chenoweth

Hood River

Football fans asked to give toys

The Duck and Beaver football teams are hoping that the biggest winner from their Civil War game on Nov. 24 in Corvallis will be local low-income children.

The two teams are encouraging football fans to bring a new, unwrapped toy to the game. The donated toys will be given to more than 100 local nonprofit agencies for distribution to area children during the upcoming winter holidays.

Civil War Series sponsors Wells Fargo, PacificSource Health Plans, McDonalds and the Northwest Ford Dealers are also urging their customers to participate.

Oregon is a state known for its outstanding college football teams and its generosity..It’s impossible to predict how many touchdowns we’ll see in the Civil War game. But we know for sure that with the help of the fans, this toy drive will touch many of our most needy children this holiday season.

The toy drive is part of the Catch the Community Spirit campaign that involves university students and staff, fans and Wells Fargo employees who are volunteering for a number of projects to help communities throughout Oregon.

Don Pearson, Wells Fargo


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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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