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Willapa Bay Salmon

At this weekend’s meeting of the Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission, the proposed Willapa Bay Salmon Management Plan will be a major topic of discussion. Since October, fishery managers have been working with a citizen committee on the proposed plan, also soliciting input from the public in a series of meetings. During the meetings today and tomorrow, managers will provide a briefing on the draft policy options, along with an outline for additional public input. Also at this weekend’s meeting, they’ll consider the adoption of a statewide Game Management Plan, along with proposed changes to the sportfishing rules in the Columbia River basin. The meeting will be start at 8:30 am in the Capital Events Center in Tumwater.

Night of 1000 Stars

The annual “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” DUI emphasis patrols being tonight and will continue into the new year. Local law enforcement agencies are teaming up with the State Patrol for the extra monitoring of area roadways, starting with this evening’s “Night of 1000 Stars.” State Patrol Trooper Will Finn says that this term represents the concept of a thousand officers’ badges shining through the night, casting light on the issue of impaired drivers. This year, there’s also an emphasis on finding and getting drivers who are high on marijuana off of area roadways. This is all connected to the “Target Zero” effort, the statewide traffic safety plan that has a goal of reducing traffic fatalities to zero by the year 2030.

Christmas and Weekend Events–12/12-14/14

Christmas Events:

Friday:
The Christmas JOY Telethon runs from 6 to 11 pm at The Electric Bean at 946 Washington Way in Longview. This is a fundraiser for Living Ministries, Hearts for Homeless Outreach and Canz 4Toyz. They’ll have live entertainment, face-painting, pictures with Santa, a Candy Cane hunt and other fun.

There’s a Christmas Tree Lighting planned for Friday evening at PeaceHealth St. John Medical Center in Longview. You can come and “gather” at the Delaware Street entrance at 5:30 pm, and the switch will be flipped at 6. They’ll have live holiday music and will be serving hot cocoa.

The 18th annual “Journey to Bethlehem” live-action re-creation of the Christmas story will be presented Friday through Sunday at the Kelso-Longview Seventh-Day Adventist Church off of West Side Highway in Lexington. Performances are planned form 6 to 9 pm Friday and Saturday, and from 5 to 9 pm on Sunday. Be sure to dress for the weather; all are invited to take part.

“Golden Bough” presents a Celtic Christmas show Friday night at the Columbia Theatre for the Performing Arts, starting at 7:30 pm. This group has been performing for more than 30 years, presenting traditional holiday arrangements from Ireland, Scotland, Wales and the other Celtic area. Call 575-TIXX or go to the CTPA web page for ticket information.

The LCC Choirs present “Carols from Around the World” Friday night in the Wollenberg Auditorium at the Rose Center for the Arts. They’ll perform carols in several languages, including Italian, German, Russian and others. Curtain is 7:30 pm on Friday; tickets are available at the LCC Student Center, or at the Rose Center box office.

Starting this weekend and running through the 28th, Stageworks Northwest invites you to take part in their “Christmas Party” at the Longview Theatre; you’re asked to wear your “ugly sweaters” or other festive apparel, and bring an inexpensive White Elephant gift to “exchange.” Shows are at 7:30 pm Friday and Saturday, and at 2 pm on Sunday.

Saturday:
The traditional performances of Handel’s “Messiah” at the Longview Community Church are planned for 7 pm on Saturday and 3 pm on Sunday, featuring a 51-voice choir and a handbell ensemble. Admission is free, but they will be accepting donations for the Salvation Army and Community House on Broadway.

Castle Rock is holding its annual Festival of Lights in downtown on Saturday. Pictures with Santa will start at 4:30 pm in the old Castle Rock Exhibit Hall, and then the parade through downtown will start at 5:30 pm. After the parade, they’ll have the tree-lighting, along with holiday music.

There’s a “Christmas” dinner theatre planned for this Saturday at the Castle Rock United Methodist Church, as they present a musical comedy called “Christmas in Cricket County.” Dinner and a show is planned for 7 pm Saturday night. Call 274-4959 for ticket information.

It’s the weekend for the closest approach of the Christmas Ship Parade, coming to St. Helens Saturday night, and Scappoose on Sunday night. The lighted and decorated boats are scheduled to tour the docks in St. Helens and Columbia City at 6 pm on Saturday; they’re also scheduled for a two-hour cruise across the Columbia to Washington, near Woodland, before returning to St. Helens to dock for the night. Sunday’s tour past Scappoose is scheduled to start at 5 pm, arriving at Fred’s Marina near Linnton at about 8:30, heading across the Multnomah Channel to Portland. This is the 60th anniversary of the Portland Christmas Ships.

Saturday evening up in Centralia, they’re holding the 5th annual Lighted Tractor Parade through downtown. Organizers say that this could be their biggest one ever, with already more than 80 entries signed up. The Lighted Tractor Parade starts at 6 pm Saturday in historic downtown Centralia.

Sunday:
Castle Rock Woman’s Club Bazaar: 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Dec. 13, 206 Cowlitz Ave. W., Castle Rock; sponsored by the Castle Rock Woman’s Club; to benefit the flooring fund of the clubhouse built in 1934.

Christmas Bazaar: 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Dec. 13, Columbia Heights Assembly of God, 3609 Columbia Heights Road, Longview; sponsored by Columbia Heights Assembly of God; to benefit Celebrate Recovery.

Other Events:

Friday:
The Three Rivers Mall continues its “Reel Pop-Up Movies” through the weekend with a Christmas theme. Free screenings of “Frozen,”, “How the Grinch Stole Christmas,” and “Home Alone 1 & 2” will be presented, along with matinee screenings of “Rudolf.” This will be near the SW corner of the mall, and you can get the current movie schedule on www.threeriversmall.com, or on the TRM Facebook page.

The Kelso High School Drama Club presents Jane Austen’s “Pride and Prejudice” on Friday and Saturday night in the KHS Auditorium. Performances are planned for 7 pm Friday and Saturday, along with a 2 pm matinee on Saturday. Tickets are available in the High School offices, or at the door.

Saturday:
Saturday morning, Kelso High School DECA is putting on the 5K COPD Christmas Run and Walk, looking to raise money and awareness for the Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Foundation. The event starts at 10 am, heading out from Joe Stewart Track at Schroeder Field. They’ll also have prizes for the “most festive” runners, and Santa will also be available for pictures. Get details on registration from the Kelso High School main office, or on the KHS DECA Facebook page.

Holiday Concert

The 20th annual Holiday Concert for Seniors is planned for this afternoon at the Longview Public Library. This will get started at 2 pm in the Koth Memorial Gallery, in the lower level of the library. The Mark Morris After Hours Jazz Choir and the R. A. Long Choir will be the featured performers, singing all kinds of Christmas and holiday songs. While this is billed as the “Holiday Concert for Seniors,” the Friends of the Longview Library say that everyone is invited to attend, and refreshments will be served.

KLOG Thursday Sports

Minnesota upset Portland 90-82 to snap the Blazers five game winning streak…..Gonzaga won its 31st straight home game, an 81-66 victory over WSU at the Spokane Arena…..Despite 18 points and 9 rebounds from Sierra Richards, LCC lost at Clackamas last night 81-71…..The Kelso girls had an easy time with Hudson’s Bay 74-22 as Loryn Musgrove had 23 points. The Kalama girls beat Woodland 41-31, the Chinooks first win over the Beavers in decades…..The Kelso boys blasted Hudson’s Bay 62-18. The Scots are 4-0…..In wrestling, both Kelso and R.A. Long came up with team wins over Tumwater and Olympia…..Oregon State will introduce new football coach Gary Andersen at a news conference on Friday. Andersen bolted Wisconsin after two successful seasons.

Commerce Collision

Longview Police say that it looks like alcohol may have been a factor in a high-speed crash that took place early this morning at Commerce and Douglas. The collision reportedly took place at 12:40 am; Longview Fire officials say that this was a “high-energy” crash, with possible serious injuries. Extrication was needed to remove one of the patients, while a second paramedic unit helped two people in the other vehicle. Their injuries were not severe, and they were treated at the scene. Longview Police report that Connor McLeod, 42, was taken to St. John Medical Center, and is listed in satisfactory condition this morning. It’s alleged that he was speeding on Commerce Avenue, ran a red light, and hit a van that was driving on Douglas. Police are now awaiting the results of a court-ordered blood draw, and charges could be filed after that.

Conviction Overturned

A 2011 homicide case is coming back to Cowlitz County Superior Court, after Division Two of the Washington State Court of Appeals threw out the second-degree murder conviction of Sergey Fedoruk of Kelso. In summer of 2012, Fedoruk was convicted of murdering his brother-in-law, and was sentenced to 18 years in prison. In a 31-page opinion issued yesterday, the Appeals Court determined that Fedoruk received “ineffective assistance of counsel,” agreeing that his defense attorney failed to properly pursue a mental health defense, and failed to object to perceived misconduct by prosecutors. The Appeals Court also discusses issues with the admissibility of certain statements made to law enforcement by Fedoruk, The case is now being sent back to Cowlitz County for “further proceedings.” The full opinion is available through the Court of Appeals web page.

More Weather

There’s a High Wind Watch up for the local area, starting late tonight and going through tomorrow night. The Weather Service says that the strong frontal systems continue to parade through the region, with a high Wind Warning starting at 2 pm on the South Washington Coast and the Coast Range. Wind gusts of up to 60 miles an hour in the Vernonia area, and up to 75 miles an hour on higher terrain. Gusts of 80 miles an hour are possible on the beaches. Locally, the winds are expected to pick up late tonight, with sustained winds of 25 to 35 miles an hour, and gusts of up to 60. You’re advised to be prepared for power outages and falling debris. Things are supposed to ease up quite a bit by Friday.

Good Samaritan Award

Cowlitz PUD Purchasing Manager Jeff Moses is being presented with a “Good Samaritan Award” by the Washington PUD Association, recognizing his efforts in saving several people who were involved in a boating mishap near the mouth of the Columbia River. Moses and his wife were crabbing last November, when they saw another boat hit some hidden rocks and go down. Jeff and Cindy Moses helped rescue four of the five people who were on that boat; another boater rescued the fifth person. The award was presented at the annual PUD Conference, held last week in Vancouver.

PUD Budget

The 2015 operating budget for the Cowlitz PUD is now in place, approved yesterday by the PUD Commission. PUD Executive Director Don McMaster says that this is a solid budget, looking to hold the line on expenses. The $277 million budget is about $10 million higher than last year, mostly due to increased power supply costs from the Bonneville Power Administration. The PUD is projecting a five-percent rate hike at some point in the coming year, but that won’t come until after the Electric Rate Advisory Committee meets early next year. This budget also continues the ten-year, $140 million Capital Improvement Plan, with work scheduled next year on the Shawnee Substation in North Kelso.