A Longview-based international organization reports that their computer system has been hacked, and they say that crooks are posing as the group to try and steal money from people. Shortly before 11 yesterday morning, representatives of the International Round Dance Teachers Association contacted Longview Police, reporting that their computer had been hacked, and that the suspects were posing as officers of the group. They say that the suspects got into their website, obtaining information about the group’s board chairman and other board members. The suspects then posed as those people, sending out emails that were asking people to send money to help “pay a vendor.” The real group members say that they were able to catch the email, and were able to intervene before anyone lost any money. They also say that steps are being taken to increase their security, and the Association is also contacting members about the scam. The suspects have not been identified.
Archive | December, 2017
Fire officials in Oregon are now reporting that the Eagle Creek Fire is now 100 percent contained, but the fire is still not completely out. The fire started in September in the Columbia River Gorge, reportedly started by a 15 year-old Vancouver boy who rolled some fireworks down a hill in the tinder-dry forest. The fire eventually grew to cover more than 48,000 acres, threatening the historic Multnomah Falls Lodge and other structures in the Gorge. The fire had been listed as 50 percent contained since October, but there’s been little effort to extinguish the fire since then, due to issues with terrain. It’s emphasized that the fire is not completely out, but officials say that they are satisfied that the fire is not active, and will not grow any further. This declaration will allow for the re-opening of additional landmarks in the Gorge. Earlier this week, access to the Multnomah Falls Lodge was re-opened, along with a stretch of the Historic Columbia River Highway, allowing visitors to access the Vista House, Guy Talbot State Park and Bridal Veil State Park. Impacts from the fire are still being felt; restrictions are still in place on I-84 between Troutdale and Hood River, and many trails in the Gorge are still off-limits. Multnomah Falls is once again open to tourists, but some areas are still fenced off, including access to the Benson Bridge. The 15 year-old is still awaiting prosecution for his supposed role in starting the fire.
They say that you should plan on “difficult travel conditions” if you’re heading into the mountains this weekend. The Weather Service is putting a Winter Weather Advisory up for the South Washington Cascades, reporting that some spots could get up to 16 inches of snow out of this next system. The advisory runs from 10 pm tonight to 10 pm tomorrow night. Snow accumulations of 8 to 14 inches are expected, with some specific locations getting up to 16 inches. The heaviest snow is expected tomorrow morning, going from 4 to 10 am. Visibility is expected to be extremely poor, and driving conditions are expected to be extreme. Be prepared for these difficult conditions if you’re heading over a mountain pass today and tomorrow; have your chains or traction devices available, and pack the extra supplies that you’ll need to navigate these difficult conditions.
The Foss Shipyard in Rainier is preparing to build what’s being called the “next generation of ship assist and escort tugs for the U. S. market,” teaming up with Damen Shipyards of The Netherlands to construct these vessels. Earlier this week, Foss Maritime announced that they have signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Damen to produce and market the Damen ASD 2813 Tug. They say that this tug design has been modified for the U. S. tug assist and escort market. The Foss Shipyard in Rainier will build the first four in a series of at least ten tugs, with a goal of delivery in 2019. The Damen tug will have 68 hundred horsepower, along with a 90-ton “bollard pull” capability. Foss President and CEO John Parrott says that they will now be able to strengthen their fleet while meeting customer demand; Foss will also have the ability to market these tugs to other companies in the United States. Officials with Damen says that they’re excited about the collaboration, and they look forward to working with Foss.
The Kelso Police Department is celebrating the addition of two new officers to the force, saying that they will help to bolster staffing. Earlier this week, it was announced that Kody Joslin and Adam Swartout had graduated from the Police Academy, and are joining the Kelso Police Department. Swartout and Joslin will now enter a three-phase local training program; once that is completed, they will be able to go out on patrol on their own. Captain Darr Kirk says that the arrival of Joslen and Swartout is badly needed, helping to alleviate staff shortages caused by recent retirements. Joslen and Swartout both are both local boys, and both have previous experience in law enforcement. Joslen was a loss prevention specialist, while Swartout served as a Marine, and as a corrections officer.
Four days of razor clam digging opens today in Washington, starting this evening on Copalis Beach, just north of Hoquiam and Aberdeen. Long Beach and Twin Harbors will open for digging tomorrow, Sunday and Monday, while Copalis and Mocrocks will alternate. Copalis is open tonight and on Sunday, while Mocrocks will open tomorrow and Monday. Washington Fish and Wildlife notes that some areas have a mix of small and large clams, so you’ll want to be selective in your digging, to make sure that you don’t go home with a limit of tiny clams. You’re required to keep the first 15 clams dug, regardless of size or condition, to avoid wasting clams. Be sure to have a current shellfish license, and dress for the weather.
It’s time once again for the Walk & Knock Food Drive, the largest one-day food collection event in the local area. About 150 volunteers are expected to hit the streets tomorrow morning, collecting donations of non-perishable food for local food banks, along with cash donations. Especially needed are donations of canned tuna, meats and other protein items, canned vegetables, baby food, pasta, and similar items. Personal items like toiletries, diapers, tooth brushes and other hygiene items are also highly appreciated. Walk and Knock donation bags were distributed earlier this week, along with envelopes that you can use for your checks or other monetary donations. You’re asked to have your donations out on your doorstep by 9 am tomorrow, and the volunteers will come by and pick them up. Donations can also be dropped off at the Help Food Warehouse, located behind the main Lower Columbia CAP offices at 1526 Commerce Avenue in downtown Longview. Organizers are hopeful that they can top last year’s totals of 38,000 pounds of food, and nearly $14,000 in cash.
The United Way of Cowlitz and Wahkiakum Counties reports that this week’s “Giving Tuesday” event was a success, as around 3,500 items were donated to the 28 local non-profits that were involved. Local United Way Director Brooke Fisher-Clarke says that they also raised more than $1,500 in cash and gift card donations, and two new volunteers were also enrolled. Fisher-Clark says that they’re extremely excited about the community response, trying to frame the event so that people could see all of the different ways that they can help out. She says that this is an event that they can build on, and can get more people involved each year.
The Castle Rock FFA is holding a Holiday Sale this Friday and Saturday, selling holiday baskets, swags, wreathes, centerpieces and Poinsettias, all prepared by the members of the FFA. The sale is taking place in the FFA greenhouse on the grounds of Castle Rock High School; hours are 3 to 5 on Friday and from 9 am until noon on Saturday.
The Artisan Guild of Mount St. Helens holds its annual Holiday Faire this weekend, going from 9 am until 5 pm on Friday and Saturday at Cassava’s, located at the corner of 14th and Broadway in Longview.
The free public viewing of the spectacular evergreens that have been prepared for the Longview Junior Service League Festival of Trees happens on Friday, going from 1:30 until 5 pm in the St. Rose Parish Center, located on 26th Avenue, just off of Washington Way. After the free viewing, the Festival of Trees itself will start at 6:30 pm with a silent auction, and a live auction at 7:30 pm. Proceeds benefit the Radiation Oncology unit at St. John Medical Center, PeaceHealth, the Lower Columbia School Gardens, the Hospice Children’s Bereavement Program, the Emergency Support Shelter, Life Works and ARC of Cowlitz County, Head Start, Parents Place, Youth and Family Link, the Children’s Discovery Museum and Longview Junior Service League scholarship programs. Call 360-957-6710 for ticket information.
The Longview Festival of the Nativities happens this weekend at the Church of Latter-Day Saints in Longview. Hundreds of Nativity scenes from all around the world will be on display, and local musical groups will also perform. Hours are 4 to 9 pm on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. The church is located at 900 11th Avenue in Longview; admission is free.
Angel Closet holds its first winter dress giveaway this Friday and Saturday, providing free dresses and accessories to local girls who are going to Winter Ball and other formal events. The hours are 3 to 6 pm on Friday, and from 10 am until 1 pm on Saturday at 1811 Washington Way in Longview. Angel Closet is a ministry of the Valley Christian Fellowship in Longview.
Kelso’s “Winter Wonderland” celebration happens this Friday evening, starting at 6 pm at the Kelso Train Depot. Along with non-stop Christmas music, there will be a “pirate ride,” face-painting, cookie decorating, games, prizes and other fun. Mayor David Futcher will light the city’s Christmas tree shortly aft 6, and then Santa will also arrive. All are invited to come and enjoy.
Christmas in Kalama gets under way this Friday evening, starting at 6:30 pm in Toteff Park. They’ll start with a tree-lighting ceremony, and with fundraisers for Kalama students who are trying to get to Washington, DC. After Saturday morning’s Walk-and-Knock Food Drive, kids can visit with Santa from 1 to 3 pm at the Kalama Library. They can get their pictures taken, they’ll receive a gift, and will also get a candy cane. On Sunday, the annual Community Turkey Dinner will be served at Kalama Elementary School, starting at 5 pm. Kids age 8 and under can eat for free.
Kelso High School presents “Around the World in 80 Days,” a show that will run this weekend and next weekend. Check out the adventures of Phineas Fogg at 7 pm on Friday, and at 2 pm on Sunday in the Auditorium at Kelso High. Performances are also set for next Saturday.
It’s the final weekend for the Stageworks Northwest production of “The Complete Works of Shakespeare, Abridged.” Three actors will present all 37 plays from The Bard in just 97 minutes. Showtimes at the Stageworks Northwest Theatre on Commerce Avenue are at 7:30 pm Friday and Saturday night, along with a 2:30 pm Sunday matinee. Go to stageworksnorthwest.org for ticket information.
There’s a special a cappella Christmas concert planned for Friday night at the Columbia Theatre for the Performing Arts, featuring the all-male choir “Cantus” returns to Longview. This year’s show is titled “Three Days of Christmas,” and will feature Christmas stories intermingled with the vocal harmonies. Curtain at the Columbia Theatre is set for 7:30 pm; call 360-575-TIXX for ticket information.
If you plan to go to Friday night’s Kelso-R. A. Long basketball games, you’re also asked to bring food donations that will help families in the Kelso and Longview School Districts. The JV game starts at 5:30, followed by the Varsity game at 7.
Get fueled up for your holiday festivities by heading to the Sons of Norway Hall in West Kelso on Saturday, where they will once again be serving their legendary Norwegian Waffle and Pancake Breakfast. This will run from 8:30 to 10:30 am on Saturday at the Lodge on Catlin Street; along with breakfast, Scandinavian specialties will be on sale, and you’ll also be able to get your tickets for the January 18th Lutefisk Dinner in advance.
The Kelso Eagles are holding a Christmas Bazaar on Saturday and Sunday at the lodge on S. Pacific Avenue, right next to the Train Depot. Hours are 9 am to 5 pm on Saturday, and from 9 to 4 on Sunday.
The Cowlitz County Historical Museum on Allen Street in Kelso is holding its annual Winter Festival for Kids on Saturday; this year’s festival will compare holiday trends in 1986 to those of 2017; they will also highlight holiday traditions and crafts from England, Japan and Portugal. The Storyteller’s Network will also be on hand. Hours are 10 am to 4 pm; admission is free, but kids must be accompanied by an adult.
The kids can have Breakfast with Santa this Saturday, going from 9 am until 11 am at the Clatskanie Cultural Center. Reservations are required, call 503-728-4129 to find out more. At 2 pm on Saturday, a free Santa movie will be shown in the Birkenfeld Cultural Center, located on Nehalem St., just off of Highway 30 in Clatskanie.
Kelso High School DECA is putting on a 5K fun run and walk on Saturday, starting at 10 am. This is a benefit for the American Cancer Society, on behalf of Julia Hiatt. Get more information on the “Run With Jules” Facebook page.
The 37th annual “Home for the Holidays” Parade through downtown Longview happens on Saturday, starting at 5 pm. After the parade, Jayanne Wakefield and her family will “Flip the Switch” to light the Civic Circle, as winners of the Longview Parks and Recreation scavenger hunt.
The Kelso First Baptist Church is presenting “Cool Water” in a Holiday concert on Sunday, starting at 7 pm at the church on S. 4th Avenue in Kelso. This being offered to the community for free; goodwill offerings will be accepted.
The Kalama Chinooks are ready to go tomorrow as they take on Liberty for the 2B football championship at the Tacoma Dome. Kickoff is at 4 pm…..Mike Leach reportedly met with Tennessee AD John Currie yesterday about the vacant UT coaching job. But Currie has been fired this morning…..Milwaukee beat Portland 103-91 in NBA action last night…..The LCC men’s hoop team hosts Umpqua tonight at 8 pm. Bellevue and Chemeketa meet prior at 6 pm…..The LCC women’s team blasted Clark 89-48 last night as Kenya Lorton scored 27…..Tyler Berger had 26 to lead Mark Morris over Fort 57-47. MM hosts Skyview tonight, 6:45 pm on FM 101.5 The Wave. Also, Kelso is at home against R.A. Long…..The Kelso girls beat RAL 58-33 in the debut of new Lassies coach Jennifer Hamilton.