Celebrating local bounty

Harvest Fest and Fruit, Craft Fair return; see special insert

If current forecasts hold up, we should expect mostly sunny weather for a couple of main events this weekend: The Harvest Fest and the Gorge Fruit and Craft Fair.

The 31st annual Harvest Fest, sponsored by the Hood River Chamber of Commerce, will be held from Friday through Sunday at the Event Site on the waterfront. The Gorge Fruit and Craft Fair happens Saturday and Sunday at the fairgrounds in Odell.

At Harvest Fest, visitors can taste fresh, local produce, get a jump start on their holiday shopping, and fully experience an authentic autumn festival that has become a yearly tradition for visitors and locals alike.

“Visitors seldom leave Harvest Fest without boxes of Anjou pears, heirloom apples, pumpkins, berries, flowers, and a smorgasbord of prepared foods from pies to jams and smoked salmon to chocolate-covered nuts,” said Ashley Huckaby, event coordinator for the Hood River County Chamber of Commerce.

“And vendors offer a wonderful array of arts and crafts, including glass, wood sculpture, ceramics, photography, fiber art, jewelry, and much more. Every year it’s a little different, but every year it is truly a great event.”

The event runs Friday from 1-7 p.m.; Saturday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.; and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is $6 for adults, $5 for veterans and seniors 65 and older, and free for kids 12 and under.

As is traditional, Friday at the festival from 1-7 p.m. will be Senior Day for those ages 65 and up. Admission for seniors on Friday will be $3, and special discounts will be available for seniors from food and art vendors.

The 2013 Harvest Fest is supported by presenting sponsor Pacific Power.

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The Gorge Fruit and Craft Fair features arts and crafts, gourmet food products, fresh fruit and produce, baked goods, wine, jewelry, furniture, plants and flowers, soft goods, and much more — all grown or crafted in the Gorge. The Hood River County Fair Board organizes the event. Admission and parking are free.

The event will be held Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the park-like Hood River County Fairgrounds, 3020 Wy’east Road, in Odell.

Special activities include an autumn flower show and sale by the Odell Garden Club; a gallery-style art show and sale by the Hood River Art Club; wine tasting and food offerings including barbecue and traditionally prepared Indian salmon.

On Saturday, at the fairgrounds arena, a ranch sorting competition will take place from late morning into the early afternoon. Admission is free.

On Sunday afternoon the Gorge Strings will provide live music.

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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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