Momentum builds for TD bike park

THE DALLES – Two residents of The Dalles hope to rally community support for a bike park with dirt jumps and berms that allow riders to test their skills.

“We have a skateboard park in town and it’s high time to have a place like that for bikers as well,” said Jake Felt, owner of Dalles City Cyclery.

He and Joe Cruz, who helps tune up bikes at the 121 E. Second St. shop, came up with the idea for the project after city officials decided to promote cycling as a way to promote economic development. Many businesses have completed the process, or are now engaged, to become certified as “bike-friendly” through Travel Oregon, which will hold an event in The Dalles in September.

“It’s one of those ‘If you build it, they will come’ type of things,” said Felt.

Cruz said children who are not into organized sports can still get daily exercise with the challenges offered by a bike park — and possibly stay out of trouble because they are kept busy.

“There’s just so many little places here and there that we could put something like this,” he said.

Felt said Hood River County has Post Canyon trails for bike enthusiasts and White Salmon has the type of park that he and Cruz envision.

They said one to two acres that could be “roughed into some humps” would be needed to provide a challenge for bikers. They plan to ask local governments for help finding that property at some point in the future.

However, they first want to form a committee of interested community members to explore costs and come up with a plan for development. The beauty of a dirt track, said Felt, is that the features can be changed to accommodate the wishes of riders and add interest.

“The weather is good enough here to have something going year-round, which is not available everywhere – and that is another draw,” said Felt, who assisted with the Post Canyon project.

Of that work, he said, “It was the first time I got involved in a ‘big picture’ type of thing and I really liked it so I am looking forward to doing it again. In Hood River, the project started small and then gained momentum and I think the same thing will happen here.”

Felt invites people interested in helping develop the bike park proposal to call him at 541-769-0771 or visit the Facebook page “The Dalles Wants a Bike Park.”

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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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