Stories by Dawn
Free concerts, along with a “Kids & Kritters” parade and equestrian demonstrations, will be among the highlights of a celebration of the Pendleton Woolen Mills’ 100 years in Washougal.
The historic occasion will be commemorated by Pendleton, the Two Rivers Heritage Museum and the City of Washougal.
The festivities will kick off Friday, at 10 a.m., at the Pendleton Mill, Two Pendleton Way. Presentations and remarks will be made by Charlie Bishop, vice president of mill operations, as well as Washougal Mayor Sean Guard.
While renovation efforts are underway to prepare the future site of Amnesia Brewing, at 1834 Main St., in downtown Washougal, another company also plans to open a microbrewery in the local area.
Mark Zech, one of five owners of Washougal Brewing Co. LLC, is interested in purchasing property near Bi-Mart, 3003 Addy St., in Washougal.
There are six available pads of land, owned by DM Stevenson Ranch.
"We're in the process of talking to the realtor," Zech said yesterday, by phone. "We have not closed on anything or come to any decisions yet. We're a brewery without a building."
The potential outsourcing of public works responsibilities in Washougal has attracted some skepticism, regarding whether any potential cost savings would be worth it.
The city is looking at a private/public partnership for operation, maintenance and management of water, wastewater and storm water utilities and possibly facility upgrades of the wastewater treatment plant.
Residents are in their second year of a five-year overall increase of 122 percent for water, sewer and storm water rates. The increases were required to pay for water and sewer infrastructure improvements, in order to meet state and federal regulations. They include the $15 million upgrade of the city’s wastewater treatment facility.
A former Camas High School varsity swimmer is now making a difference with the Peace Corps in South Africa. Kelsey Lynch, 22, recently left Washougal to begin pre-service training as a volunteer science teacher. After graduating from eight weeks of cultural and language training, she will begin teaching science to primary school children and teaching HIV/AIDS prevention.
Lynch said she was inspired to join the Peace Corps because of her family.
"My mom's brother died from AIDS before I ever got the chance to know him," she said. "Growing up, I became very interested in the education and prevention of the disease because of what my family had gone through. I wanted to help other families that were affected by the disease and help teach younger generations how to protect themselves."
An attorney for Pendleton Woolen Mills, in Washougal, has filed a notice of appeal regarding citations of workplace violations.
Robert Battles, with Lane Powell, of Olympia, filed the notice July 10, seeking dismissal of citations and penalties. Pendleton is also requesting the opportunity for a reassumption conference to discuss the citations and notices of assessment as well as corresponding penalties.
The appeal states that Pendleton disputes all citations including the allegation that it did not have a confined space entry program or that the program was insufficient. It also disputes the citations that allege it did not maintain hazardous chemical and hearing protection programs, as well as adequate lockout/tag out procedures, proper machine guarding, fall protection and forklift training.
"Even if violations occurred, which Pendleton disputes, the alleged citations should not have been issued as serious violations," the appeal states.
City of Washougal officials are looking into the possibility of outsourcing public works responsibilities.
Interim Public Works Director Jim Dunn said the city is looking at a private/public partnership for operation, maintenance and management of water, wastewater and storm water utilities and possibly facility upgrades of the wastewater treatment plant.
Motocross fans might wonder why the project to replace the Cougar Creek Bridge started yesterday instead of waiting one week.
The project requires a complete closure of Northeast Washougal River Road, from Milepost 5.1 to 5.2 for an estimated 15 weeks. The bridge is located at Milepost 5.16.
During the project, traffic is being detoured around the construction zone. The designated detour route includes 17th Street, Evergreen Highway, 32nd Street, Jennings Road, 357th Avenue and Vernon Road.
The owner of a shop that recently opened in downtown Camas has a global perspective.
Pam Zolotko, owner of The World Works, sells a variety of items from many countries. They include “safari decor,” such as African masks and elephant-shaped carvings.
The business specializes in consignment and resale items.
The State Department of Labor and Industries has notified officials with Pendleton Woolen Mills, in Washougal about 21 violations in several categories.
They include confined space, hearing conservation, personal protective equipment, employee training and hazard communication issues.
Elaine Fischer, a spokeswoman for the L&I office in Olympia, said two types of inspections were conducted -- those focusing on industrial hygiene or "health" hazards and the other focusing on safety issues.
A Ridgefield company is expected to begin work on the Cougar Creek Bridge replacement project this month.
Port of Camas-Washougal Commissioner Bill Ward would like the port to have “a place at the table” regarding discussions about coal trains.
Ward said during the July 3 port commission meeting he wants the port to be included as a party of record in future discussions about the potential impacts of increased rail traffic.
Attorney Tim Harris said a letter could be written, requesting that the port be included as a party of record.
Ward said he was interested in how a "coal train parade" could affect traffic mobility, as well as quality of life and economic development.
Additional discussions and a vote on a coal train resolution could occur at the next port commission meeting Tuesday, July 17, at 5 p.m., in the port office meeting room, 24 S. "A" St., Washougal.
A record number of 158 teams are expected to participate in this weekend’s Adidas “Clash at the Border” soccer tournament.
The previous record had been 144 teams, according to Tournament Director Jeff Castagnola. They will be arriving from areas such as Portland, Eugene and Bend, Ore., as well as Seattle, Yakima and Everett, Wash.
The 10th annual event will be held Friday through Sunday, at several local fields including Skyridge Middle School, 5220 N.W. Parker St., and the fields surrounding Doc Harris Stadium, 1125 N.E. 22nd Ave., in Camas.
A man who has lived in Washougal for nearly 10 years is the newest addition to the City Council.
Brent Boger, Vancouver senior assistant city attorney since 1999, was approved by council members last night. He fills the vacancy left by Jon Russell who recently moved to Virginia.
There is no such thing as a typical day for Paul Dennis.
Since the formation of the Camas-Washougal Economic Development Association a year ago, his endeavors as president have included organizational matters such as forming a board of directors and securing office space. A CWEDA website is expected to be ready this summer.
On any given day, Dennis receives phone calls and visits from people representing a variety of businesses.
“I point them in the right direction about business incentives — local and statewide, and I help with property inquiries,” he said.
The city of Washougal is introducing a new program, aimed at helping motorists locate businesses.
The "Washougal Informational Sign Program" will include the installation of two signs this summer and an additional sign after the state Route 14 widening project is completed.
The Washougal Finance Director has released the names of seven residents who want to serve on City Council. They include several individuals who have or are currently serving on other boards or commissions.
Independence Day will be celebrated at a variety of locations in the Camas, Washougal, Vancouver and Stevenson areas.
The owners and staff of Universal Mixed Martial Arts are getting ready to relocate the business — back to downtown Camas.
Mel and Cherri Locke have purchased the building at 217 N.E. Fourth Ave., from Marc Fitzgerald, former owner of Fitzgerald's Fine Wines and Createring. In 2006, Fitzgerald closed his Camas businesses and opened Hooba's, a restaurant in Husum, Wash.
Camas schoolchildren recently had the unique opportunity to climb aboard a helicopter, hop on a response boat and meet Coast Guard personnel.
The June 6 visit had been arranged by Jeff Lukowiak, a resident agent-in-charge with the Coast Guard Investigative Service.
"I spend so much time away from home tending to the needs of the service, it's always fun to get to share my job and experiences with my family and children so I thought why not share with everyone I can," he said.
"I always feel great being able to share my opinion that I work for the best organization in the world," Lukowiak said. "We get to save people's lives, protect the environment and make a difference everyday. How many people get to do that and get paid for it?"
Excitement and elation were among the emotions of the day when the Hayes Freedom High School Class of 2012 graduated.Forty-one seniors received diplomas Saturday afternoon, among family and friends in the Liberty Middle School gym.
A project that is expected to enhance the safety of the intersection of Evergreen Way and 32nd Street has advanced a step further.
The Washougal City Council has approved a $170,412 contract with Wallis Engineering, to provide project management and administration, design development and final design services.
The June 4 vote was 5 to 1, with Dave Shoemaker issuing the "no" vote. Paul Greenlee had an excused absence. Shoemaker said during the council's May 29 workshop he would vote against the agreement because the city's contribution would be from reserves.
Members of Camas Loyal Order of the Moose Lodge 1042 have been busy, volunteering their time to prepare a new meeting site in Washougal.
The Moose purchased the property at 389 "E" St., for $350,000, from Clem and Lonna Dworaczyk on May 4. The property includes .34 of an acre and a 2,924 square foot building previously occupied by the Showboat Pub & Grill.
Fish and Wildlife officials are investigating minor injuries sustained by two horses on Mount Norway — possibly caused by a juvenile cougar.
Deputy Chief Mike Cenci said a warden responded to a property Monday, on Southeast 339th Street, Washougal.
Interest in filling the Washougal City Council seat currently held by Jon Russell has already begun, according to Mayor Sean Guard.
He mentioned during the City Council meeting last night that there have been phone calls from individuals interested in succeeding Russell.
Those persons will have until 5 p.m., Tuesday, June 26, to turn in one-page cover letters indicating their interest and general qualifications for the position and resumes of no more than two pages.
Charlie Bishop enjoys looking out his office window, to see people walk, run and bicycle through the pedestrian tunnel located near the Pendleton Woolen Mill, in Washougal.
But Bishop, vice president of mill operations at Pendleton, does not often have time to people watch, since he walks through the 300,000 square foot mill several times a day.
After reviewing a detective’s report, the Clark County Prosecutor’s Office has decided to not file any charges as a result of the Washougal financial investigation.
The report, prepared by Clark County Sheriff's Office Det. Tom Mitchum, had referred the case to the prosecutor's office for review with no recommended prosecutorial action.
Memorial Day will be acknowledged in the Camas-Washougal area with a three-day weekend of observances.
Deborah Kirkendall is relishing the peaceful surroundings that her new business offers her and her clients.
She recently opened Glo Beauty Lounge, in the new 1887 Main building, in downtown Washougal.
The scheduling of a special Washougal City Council meeting has generated interest as well as questions about transparency.
The meeting, which will be held Thursday, at 7 p.m., in the council chambers at City Hall, 1701 "C" St., is sponsored by council members Connie Jo Freeman, Jon Russell, Caryn Plinski and Jennifer McDaniel.
Two local artists will lead a two-day retreat that will focus on creativity, fun and faith.
Elida Field and Lara Blair are planning the "Ignite the heart: Women of Truth" event, which will include photography and collage/mixed media workshops. Sessions are planned for Friday, June 1, from 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m., at Blair's studio, and Saturday, June 2, from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., at Field's studio, both in Camas. An "after party" at 7 p.m., will include an art show for each participant and a guest.
Three contracts, totalling $198,000, have been given the go-ahead by the Port of Camas-Washougal Commission, for construction engineering services pertaining to the Steigerwald Commerce Center.
The contracts for phase one of the Steigerwald project include the production of civil engineering plans and the construction specifications for the site grading and utility improvements. The fee for that work, to be completed by MacKay & Sposito, Inc., is $163,000.
Camas Mayor Scott Higgins and Washougal Mayor Sean Guard have embarked on a one-year challenge to tackle obesity.
Their efforts started May 2, during a press conference and weigh-in.
Higgins, a minister, husband and father, said he is looking forward to having more energy, and his competitive spirit was evident.
"I love beating Washougal," he added.
The potential of a split diamond interchange at Washougal River Road and 27th Street will need federal and/or state financial support to move forward.
Washougal Interim Public Works Director Jim Dunn said funding for the potential $98 million project would be needed for project planning, design, permitting and construction. The process is expected to take up to 10 years.
The option, recommended by Dunn, would include frontage roads with grade separation of railroad tracks at 27th.
Another option recently presented to the Washougal City Council and Port of Camas-Washougal Commission included full diamond interchanges at Washougal River Road and 32nd Street, with grade separation of railroad tracks at 32nd. The estimated cost of that option is $105 million to $120 million.
A Washougal resident has relocated her office from Vancouver to Washougal.
Courtney Wilkinson, a financial representative for Country Financial, said she and her husband Kurt decided almost 11 years ago to build their home in Washougal.
Mitch Hammontree, owner of Quiznos in Washougal, does not mince words when he says the condition of the 200 block of “C” Street in front of his business in The Crossing development, “looks like Afghanistan.”
He recently experienced the bumpy roadway ride, as well as delays enforced by flaggers, when he delivered sandwich orders to the Georgia Pacific mill in downtown Camas.
Rob Boley, of Washougal, is adjusting to his new job — which is to find a job.
For seven years, he owned The Great Frame Up, in the Riverstone Marketplace development along Southeast 192nd Avenue, in Vancouver. After deciding not to renew his lease, Boley closed the custom art framing shop in February.
He was among the more than 800 individuals participating in a job fair at Clark College, Wednesday.
"It was time well spent for me," Boley said. "I learned a lot about many companies in a short period of time, and I was able to stop and visit with just about every table there.
"The ones that resonate the most with me were the businesses in the retail front or selling products that I could become personally excited about," he added.
Four members of the Washougal City Council recently got together for a social breakfast, to talk about educational options for children, vacations to Hawaii and Florida, the difference between raising boys and girls, and the brew pub that is expected to open on Main Street this summer.
They also talked about the experiences they had while campaigning and door-belling last fall, their motivations for running for office, the places where they grew up and the reasons they chose to live in Washougal.
Connie Jo Freeman, Caryn Plinski and Joyce Lindsay took their first oaths of office as council members in January, while Jennifer McDaniel has been serving since 2008.
Port of Camas-Washougal Executive Director Dave Ripp said he was elated when he found out the state budget recently approved by the legislature includes $1.5 million for the Steigerwald Commerce Center.
The state funding will go toward phase one of the project, formerly known as the East Industrial Park. Phase one is expected to include the extension of approximately 1,500 feet of street from Truman, east into the commerce center.
A couple actively involved in the local community has decided to expand their business to the 192nd Avenue corridor.
Don Mills and Morgan McColum, owners of Twilight Pizza Bistro, have co-hosted car shows, raised money for the West Columbia Gorge Humane Society, accepted donations for Children's Center and entered a team in the Camas Days bathtub races.
A new American Family Insurance office in Washougal is providing several types of coverage for area residents.
Individuals interested in improving their photography skills are invited to participate in Camas Camera Club meetings and assignments.
The meetings are open to photographers of all skill levels, ages 16 and older. Individuals are invited to bring a couple of recent images to the meetings.
The club was officially founded by Kirsten Muskat in June 2011, after she and a few photographer friends had met sporadically along trails, workshops and in local homes.
Muskat, who now serves as club president, said the meetings are enjoyable and informative.
"It's fun to see everyone's images, watching people's skills grow, seeing some really creative and brilliant work, and we have some great banter," she said. "We have short, informative photo talks every month, and I got some great pointers and ideas on how to present slide shows, new photo editing software and High Dynamic Range photography."
Dave and Becky Dotson, of Washougal, are very excited to own a game, card and toy store in their hometown.
The Dotsons opened Hero Support today.
“It’s been a work-in-progress for about 2 1/2 months,” Dave said.
That process included renovating the former County Communications space with new flooring and paint, and the water fountain feature outside has been repaired.
“It was the right time and the right opportunity,” Dave said. “The building became available for lease four or five months ago.”
Several Washougal residents recently complained about utility rate increases that were approved two years ago.
The second year of increases has resulted in a single family residence -- within city limits -- paying an estimated $174.60 for water, sewer and storm water, every two months this year. That compares to $144.59 every two months in 2011.
During the April 2 Washougal City Council meeting, Cecil Hopkins complained about the rate increases.
The Port of Camas-Washougal Commission has approved the purchase of land near its Sixth Street property.
The commission voted 3 to 0, April 3, to buy a 10,000 square foot lot at 1111 S. Seventh St., Washougal, from Ron Gustafson, for $190,000.
The purpose of the purchase is to add additional, contiguous port property, according to Port Communications Manager Jack Hardy.
The port will pay $50,000 at closing. Installment payments will be spread over three years beginning with $50,000 in 2013, $50,000 in 2014 and $40,000 in 2015 at an interest rate of four percent.
A former Washougal resident is hoping to make a difference, particularly in the lives of youth.
Elijah "Mentality" Huckins recently released a suicide prevention and awareness music video "Leaf on a Limb." It is among the songs on his CD "Risk It All."
In addition to hoping to reach as many youth as possible, Huckins thinks the video could be a great tool for parents.
"Parents could use it to communicate with their children about this tragic reality," he said. "This video shows what is left behind and most importantly that there is help and hope. These are not just actors but people who have really lost someone to suicide."
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- by By Dawn Feldhaus Post-Record staff
- April 3, 2012
The long-awaited results of an investigation into Washougal financial issues have been sent to the Clark County Prosecutor’s Office.
Sheriff's Office Sgt. Kevin Allais, with the Major Crimes Unit, said the report prepared by Detective Tom Mitchum, has been completed and forwarded to prosecutors.
A conceptual drawing has been created, highlighting options that could one day occupy the former Hambleton Lumber Company site.
The drawing, developed by staff with the consulting firm Maul Foster and Alongi, is intended to “just give a visual of the possibilities of the site,” according to Port of Camas-Washougal Executive Director David Ripp. The possibilities included commercial/mixed use options, ranging in size from 10,000 square feet to 140,000 square feet, as well as restaurants and retail stores of 50,000 to 75,000 square feet.
As the work to widen state Route 14 continues, several local business owners say they are being affected by the project.
A local resident is hoping to increase the awareness of the American Diabetes Association and its mission to prevent and cure diabetes.
The Fort Vancouver Regional Library District currently pays the city of Washougal $1 per year, for the use of the library building at 1661 “C” St., in the City Hall complex.
That type of financial arrangement is not likely to occur again if the library relocates.
More than 35 people attended a Friends of the Washougal Library meeting March 13. In addition to longtime and brand new Friends members and Washougal Community Librarian Christine Hughey, the meeting was attended by Washougal Mayor Sean Guard and Lone Wolf Development Representative Adam Taylor. The Community Libraries Director for FVRL Jill Rourke and FVRL Foundation Director Rick Smithrud were also there.
The library is currently 2,400 square feet, with 1,800 square feet of that dedicated to public use. The remaining area is for staff and storage.