Archive for the ‘Local News’ Category

Washington Way Closes

November 17th, 2014

Today’s the day…Construction starts this morning on the Washington Way Bridge Replacement Project in Longview, closing that thoroughfare across Lake Sacajawea for the next year. Work includes demolition of the existing bridge, installation of pile for the new bridge foundation, and construction of the new bridge. Washington Way will be closed to all traffic between Nichols Boulevard and Kessler Boulevard while this work is going on. Detours are now set up, directing vehicular traffic to 20th Avenue via Nichols and Kessler, while pedestrians are being directed to the Hemlock footbridge. The foot paths under the bridge are also closed, with walkers and bike riders directed to the paths crossing Washington Way at Kessler and Nichols. The $5.3 million project is expected to take about a year to complete.

Flu Shots Available

November 17th, 2014

The Southwest Washington YMCA is teaming up with Rite Aid to offer a couple of flu shot clinics this week. From 8 until 10 am today, you can get your flu shot at the YMCA building, which is located at 766 15th Avenue, right across from Lake Sacajawea Park. A second clinic is planned from 4:30 to 6:30 pm on Wednesday, the 19th. You do NOT need to be a YMCA member to take advantage of these clinics. The shots are free for those who have no insurance. If you do have insurance, just show your card and the company will be billed. If you have Kaiser, then you will need to go to one of the Kaiser flu shot clinics. Call Lynda at the Y if you have other questions. Their number is 423-4770.

Take a Bite Out of Hunger

November 17th, 2014

If you’re having a bite to eat this week in the Woodland area, you’re also helping to support the Woodland Action Center and the food bank that they run out of there. Nine restaurants in Woodland are teaming up this week for “Take a Bite Out of Hunger,” all donating a portion of their proceeds to the Woodland Action Center. Flyers are being distributed through the community; when you dine at America’s Family Diner, the Woodland Burgerville, Casa Tapatia, Gilliano’s Pizza, Guadalajara, Los Pepe’s, Mali Thai Cuisine, the Oak Tree or Papa Murphy’s, show the flyer or just tell your server that you want to “Take a Bite Out of Hunger. Full details on the campaign are available on the Woodland Action Center web page, or you can go to their Facebook page.

Parrott Way Fire

November 14th, 2014

Cowlitz 2 Fire and Rescue reports that a fire in a commercial building in the industrial area of Kelso was found and put out before any significant damage was done. Fire crews were called to the 2000 block of Parrott Way at about 5 pm yesterday, when smoke was seen coming from the back of a building in that area. Workers on the scene had been modifying a work space, using tools that produce heat and sparks. Some of that heated material got into a circulation system, and then caught fire. Firefighters used gas-powered saws to gain access to the source of the fire and put it out. They’re calling this an “accidental” fire, which was contained to the circulation system. No injuries were reported, and there’s no dollar estimate on damage.

SCU Busts

November 14th, 2014

The Longview Police Street Crimes Unit reports making two arrest in separate actions earlier this week. In a press release issued yesterday, SCU officials announced that a search warrant was served on Wednesday at 2121 Sycamore Street in Longview, where Detectives claim to have found heroin, meth, prescription drugs, cash, scales and other drug packaging materials. Leo Andrew Fannon, 56, was arrested on a number of charges, including possession of meth with intent to deliver, possession of heroin, possession of schedule 2 and schedule 4 drugs, and possession with intent to deliver within a school zone. His bail is currently set at $30,000.

On Tuesday, an unrelated investigation was wrapped up with the arrest of Rudy Lane Newton, 50, of Longview. He’s now being charged with delivery of heroin within a school zone, and he’s currently being held on bail of $10,000.

Mini Mart Reopens

November 14th, 2014

Residents of the Columbia City area near Saint Helens are cheering the re-opening of Columbia City Grocery and Gas. The mini-mart located at the north end of town has been closed for the past two years. After surveying people in the area, the new manager, Kailesh Patel, says that they plan to have some basic grocery items like fresh produce, salads, milk, flour, bread and juices at reasonable prices, along with the traditional convenience store fare. Patel says that he’ll also be creating ten new jobs in the area. The former software engineer has experience with owning and operating hotels and pizza franchises, and got interested in this building after hearing from other friends who operate gas stations in Newberg and Forest Grove. It’s also reported that Patel is looking into the possibility of getting a deli or a franchise restaurant in the other half of the building. Patel is currently planning to open for business this weekend.

Cadet Training

November 14th, 2014

Washington State Patrol officials say that slots are still available for tomorrow’s testing for Trooper Cadet positions. The testing will be held tomorrow morning at the WSP Headquarters on Northeast 51st Street in Vancouver, starting at 7:30 am. Applications are being accepted through the WSP website ONLY. Walk-in applications will NOT be accepted. Those accepted for testing will need to complete a physical agility test that includes a minute of sit-ups, a minute of push-ups and a one-and-one-half mile run. Those who pass the physical test will then move on to the written test. If you would like to know more, go to the State Patrol website, or contact Trooper Bennie Taylor at 360-852-1948.

Kids Conference

November 14th, 2014

The third annual “Infant Through 3rd-Grade Conference” is planned for tomorrow at Lower Columbia College, an event that will bring teachers, parents, students, childcare providers and early learning professionals together for a full day of information and instruction. The theme for this year’s conference is “Multiple Joyful Opportunities for Learning.” Along with several breakout sessions, Doctor Gail Joseph, an Associate Professor and Director of Early Childhood and Family Studies at the University of Washington, will be the keynote speaker. Her presentation is titled “Teach Me What to do Instead!” Joseph plans to discuss practical strategies to prevent challenging behavior and increase social emotional competence. You can get more information on the conference and registration by going to the LCC website, or by calling 442-2840.

Tech Donations

November 14th, 2014

MPC Digital Solutions in Rainier is announcing a new effort to help you move out your old computers and other electronics, while also helping local social service agencies and organizations with their technology needs. MPC President Mike Leiker says that they’re now accepting donations of computers, monitors, printers, TV’s and other electronics; he says that they’ll examine those pieces and determine if they still have life. If they do, then they’ll be reconditioned and presented to non-profits or other groups who have technological needs. Leiker says that MPC has a dedicated page on its website, with tabs for people wishing to make donations, and for organizations that have technology needs. Donations can be dropped off at the MPC store at 107 First Street in Rainier from Monday through Friday from 9 am to 6 pm, or you can call 503-556-8117 to arrange a pickup.

Kalama Citizen of the Year

November 14th, 2014

Long-time community activist Jim Bain is being honored at Kalama’s Citizen of the Year, announced late last month by the Kalama Chamber of Commerce. The 70 year-old is retired from the design firm that he founded several decades ago, but he’s still extremely involved in the Kalama area. He currently chairs the Cowlitz County Boundary Review Board, served as the chair of the Kalama Planning Commission, has been involved with the Relay for Life for the past 20 years, and with his wife Judy, helped to create the Parks and Recreation Advisory Committee. He also helped get “Envision Kalama” started ten years ago, a local group that supports community development projects. The 2015 Citizen of the Year award was announced by the Chamber on October 24th, and will be officially presented to Bain at the Kalama Chamber Community Dinner, which is being planned for March or April of next year.