Downtown prepares for holidays

State Street will be cleaned up and ready for Friday night

DENNIS MILLER of Hollywood Lighting bundles up as he stands on the high lift and attaches light strands to the holiday tree at Second and State. Working tip to base, Miller expects to conclude the work by Wednesday morning.

Photo by Kirby Neumann-Rea.
DENNIS MILLER of Hollywood Lighting bundles up as he stands on the high lift and attaches light strands to the holiday tree at Second and State. Working tip to base, Miller expects to conclude the work by Wednesday morning.

State Street should “clean up real good.”

The thoroughfare will be open for the parade, tree lighting, caroling and the arrival of Santa on Friday night.


AT HOME On Oak’s Megan Kaufman arranges window display, part of the Window Walk on Oak.

Hood River’s festive holiday kickoff tradition starts with the parade at 6 p.m. (details on page A5) but plenty of preparations have to happen first.

Pacific Power and the city installed the tree Monday morning at Overlook Memorial Park at Second and State streets, and Hollywood Lights of Portland began stringing lights on the 50-foot fir that afternoon. That process should be complete by Wednesday morning.

Also by Friday, Crestline Construction will move from the intersection its equipment and the stacks of large concrete fittings staged there as part of the State Street Urban Renewal Project.

City and Chamber of Commerce officials said the areas will be ready to safely accommodate the Friday crowd. City crews will sweep the Second and State intersection and the Chamber will put up fencing in selected areas to keep people off the equipment.

The lights are already on the Oak Street trees, creating an illuminated corridor for Friday’s parade.

Here is the schedule for Friday’s activities:

4 p.m. — Free parking downtown

6 p.m. — Parade begins on Oak Street and goes through downtown Hood River. Anyone may participate; gather on Oak near Sixth. The parade disbands at Hood River News parking lot, Sixth and State.

Immediately following the parade will be tree lighting on State and Second streets; Mayor Arthur Babitz will do the honors.

7:15 p.m. — Caroling on Oak and Second streets: professional singers will help lead everyone in caroling, and newly printed songbooks will be provided.

Free cocoa, cookies, and juice will be served, and anyone may write a holiday wish and tie it on the tree.

Shops and restaurants will remain open after the parade, many of them participating in the downtown window display contest.


Businesses have until Dec. 4 to sign up for the window display contest: email

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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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