Hood River, Cascade Locks celebrate holidays

Christmas time is right around the corner, as evidenced by Hood River’s downtown Christmas tree. Pictured here are Alex Fuller and Dennis Miller of Hollywood Lights Tuesday  installing some of the roughly 4,000 lights that will brighten up town for the next several weeks starting Friday evening with a festival and holiday parade.

Photo by Adam Lapierre.
Christmas time is right around the corner, as evidenced by Hood River’s downtown Christmas tree. Pictured here are Alex Fuller and Dennis Miller of Hollywood Lights Tuesday installing some of the roughly 4,000 lights that will brighten up town for the next several weeks starting Friday evening with a festival and holiday parade.

The lighting of the Christmas season happens in earnest this week in Hood River and Cascade Locks.

  • In Cascade Locks, the 10th Annual Festival of Lights begins at 4:30 p.m. Dec. 2 at City Hall. Participants will enjoy free cookies and warm beverages, pictures with Santa, ornament making, carols, and lighting of the tree.
  • Columbia Gorge Hotel holds its annual Festival of Lights on Dec. 1, with the illumination more than 250,000 lights. Guests of honor at the free event will be Trail Blazer great Bob Gross of the 1977 NBA championship team, and members of the Blazer Dancers. The event starts at 5 p.m. Free refreshments will be served.
  • Hood River Holiday Kick-Off happens Nov. 30, starting at 6:00 p.m. in downtown Hood River. The festival begins with the city’s holiday parade, followed by lighting of the 30-foot tree by Mayor Arthur Babitz, cocoa and cookies, caroling at Oak and Second at 7:15 p.m., led by professional singers; songbooks will be provided. Parking is free and the streets will be closed to vehicles.

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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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