The theme is “It’s Easy Being Green,” as the 2011 Cowlitz County Fair opens today and runs through Sunday. As usual, the event will kick off with the annual Kiwanis Kids Day Parade, with local children marching through downtown Longview to the Fairgrounds. Lineup starts at 10 am at Commerce and Florida, then the parade itself starts at 11 am, coming down Commerce to Maple, cutting over to 7th Avenue, then up 7th to the Fairgrounds. The fair itself opens at 11 am, and will be open to 10 pm tonight; they’ll be open until 11 pm tomorrow and Saturday, and from 11 am to 7 pm on Sunday. This year’s fair will feature a new carnival vendor, Davis Cascadia Amusement; they’ll also have the fair’s first-ever Thunder Mountain Barbecue Championship, a competition that’s officially sanctioned by the Pacific Northwest Barbecue Association. Country Music star Jo Dee Messina performs tonight at 7 pm; Messina says that a portion of tonight’s concert will be dedicated to Rainier Police Chief Ralph Painter; she says that she was deeply touched after hearing about his murder, and plans to dedicate a song to his memory. She also says that they hope to show at least a portion of his funeral procession at tonight’s show. The Thunder Mountain Pro Rodeo runs tomorrow and Saturday, and the Demolition Derby will be held at 2 pm on Sunday. Big crowds are expected as the weather should be perfect this year; admission to the fair is free, but separate tickets are required for tonight’s concert, the rodeo and the demolition derby.
Archive | July, 2011
Embers from a fireplace are getting the blame for starting a fire that did some significant damage to a home in the 1600 block of Holcomb Road yesterday morning, also sending the home’s owner to the hospital with smoke inhalation. Crews from Cowlitz 2 Fire and Rescue were called to 1646 Holcomb Road at about 11:30 am; when fire crews arrived, they found the homeowner on the roof, trying to use fire extinguishers to get the fire out. The homeowner came down off the roof and firefighters took over, getting the fire out in less than five minutes, with an area of about 20 square feet burned. There was also smoke and water damage inside the house. The homeowner was taken to St. John Medical Center for treatment; he reports that the loss is not insured.
A fire reported early yesterday morning in the 800 block of 7th Avenue in Longview is being looked into as a possible arson. Fire crews were called about a dumpster fire at about 3:15 am, and witnesses say that the fire was spreading. By the time firefighters arrived, they say that the fire had spread to nearby bushes and a fence, and was also threatening a PUD pole. They got the fire put out before any additional damage was done; evidence at the scene indicates that this was an arson incident. No suspects have been identified.
Longview Police say that it took some doing to track down Shane O’Neil Miles, 32, of Longview, having to chase him for some distance before finding him at a home in the 600 block of 23rd Avenue. LPD says that Miles was wanted on several outstanding warrants, and was spotted by an officer at about 6:30 pm, walking in the 600 block of 23rd. He reportedly started running, heading into back yards and jumping fences in the attempt to elude police. Around 6:46 pm, someone reported seeing Miles go into a home in the 600 block of 22nd; officers went to that house and took Miles into custody shortly before 7 pm. He’s now being held on three counts of malicious mischief, interfering with the reporting of domestic violence, fourth-degree domestic violence assault and a trip permit violation.
Felony assault charges are being filed against Brandyn Kristopher Francis, 27, after he allegedly bit and choked a security guard from the Safeway store on 15th Avenue in Longview. This incident was reported at about 12:30 yesterday afternoon. Store personnel called Longview Police, saying that store security had been assaulted as they tried to detain Francis for alleged shoplifting. Francis traveled for several blocks, finally being located and arrested in an alley in the 1400 block between 8th and 9th Avenues. He’s now being held without bail, charged with third-degree assault and third-degree theft.
The Cowlitz PUD is making plans to hold rate hearings some time next month, after getting word from the Bonneville Power Administration that wholesale power rates are going up nearly 8 percent in October. The BPA announced earlier this week that wholesale power rates will go up 7.8 percent on October first. PUD officials say that they were waiting for this news, also saying that the wholesale rate hike is actually less than they expected. The Cowlitz PUD buys about 90 percent of its electricity supply from the BPA, and will be required to make a rate adjustment to reflect this increased cost. The exact size of the projected increase hasn’t yet been determined. PUD officials say that they should know more in the next few weeks, and will release those figures prior to the rate hearing, which will be held at one of the regular PUD Commission meetings in September.
A six-week competition between Cowlitz PUD employees has been a big benefit to the Help Food Warehouse, as the employees collected more than 16,000 pounds of food over a six-week period. Dave Andrew says that PUD employees were split into two teams, competing to see who could raise the most food and money. Along with the food donations, the teams collected $3,761 in cash. This is the fourth year of the PUD employee competition, which has now resulted in more than 18 tons of food for the Help Food Warehouse.
Kids can head over to Northlake Elementary School in Longview today for another Bike Rodeo. Longview Police are teaming up with the Boy Scouts, Highlander Cycling, Longview Parks, Lower Columbia Safe Kids and PeaceHealth St. John to put today’s event on, running from 2 to 4 pm. They’ll be doing bike safety checks, there’s a skills course, helmet fittings and bike registration available. It’s free for all elementary and middle school kids in the area. Parents or legal guardians will need to complete an assumption of risk, waiver and release prior to the children taking part. Call 442-5890 for more information.
The Summer Concerts at the Lake go back to the heyday of rock-and-roll tonight, as The Schwing Daddies perform a concerts of 60’s and 70’s music. The free concert at Martin’s Dock runs from 6 to 8 pm.
Matt Hasselbeck is leaving Seattle after 10 years as Seahawks QB. Hasselbeck has agreed to a deal with Tennessee to start and mentor Jake Locker. The Hawks agreed with QB Tavaris Jackson, who leaves Minnesota…..The Mariners are playing a day game at the Bronx trying to snap a 17 game losing streak, KLOG 9:00 am. The Yankees won 4-1 last night…..Cowlitz OF Spencer O’Neil had three hits including a homer in the WCL All Star Game last night. His West team lost to the East 4-2. The Black Bears are back home tonight for a 6:35 pm game with the Bellingham Bells at Story Field…..Pepsi Pak of Yakima beat Pacific Tech 6-3 in the opening round of the State Legion tourney in Selah. Pac Tech tries to stay alive when they play the Kennewick Bandits at 12 pm today.
The man who represents Columbia County in Congress now says he will resign amid the political fallout from an 18-year-old woman’s allegations of an unwanted sexual encounter with him. Democratic leaders had requested a House Ethics Committee investigation of the conduct of Congressman David Wu, and pressure had been growing for him to resign. In a statement issued late yesterday morning, Wu said he would put the wellbeing of his children first, and says that he plans to step away from Congress after the debt ceiling issue is settled. Attention now turns to finding Wu’s replacement; Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber announced yesterday that plans are already in the works to conduct a special election to select Wu’s replacement. Several possible contenders are already lining up, including several people who’d already announced plans to run for the seat next year. Among those is current Oregon state representative Brad Witt of Clatskanie, along with Oregon Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian and businessman Rob Miller.