First Gorge junior race team tests Seattle waters

Young sailors represent the Gorge at Junior Olympics

As an extension to the Hood River Community Education-based GORGE Junior Sailing program, a group of 10 young sailors traveled to Seattle last weekend to race in the Northwest Junior Olympics. The group, coached by Paul Steward, trained through the summer with GJS and learned the ropes of sail racing inside the protected waters of the Hood River Marina.

“This year I really wanted to start a youth racing team because we have a lot of good sailors in the program who are interested in taking sailing to the next level,” Steward said this week. “We practiced throughout the summer on boat handling, starting, and tactics and strategy. My hope in providing these opportunities was to get a core group of sailors interested in forming a race team that could train and travel to regional competitions together.”

The NWJO event was a youth regatta hosted by Seattle and Corinthian yacht clubs. Young sailors from across the Northwest competed in several different classes (Optis, Bics, Lasers, Laser Radials, FJs, 29ers) in the Shilshole Bay just north of Seattle.

“Most were a little hesitant to sail in the vast and salty waters of Puget Sound after having sailed on the Columbia all summer,” Steward said. “But attending the event exposed the kids to a whole new level of competition and broadened their sailing horizons.

“The best way to get good at sailing is through racing. A young person can sail around the Hood River marina for several summers without really mastering some of the important concepts of sailing. Racing, however, gives sailors motivation and incentive to figure out how to make their boats go fast. In so doing, sailors figure out how their boats work and learn what it takes to compete.”

Highlights from the race are as follows:

Leif Bergstrom and Charlie Sutherland: third in FJ class

Maya Berkowitz and Erin Sutherland: seventh in FJ class

Ruben Blaine: ninth in FJ Class

Gavin Ullrich: 22nd in Laser Radial class

Pelle Bergstrom: 13th in Opti Blue class

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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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