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Table of Contents Feature Photos

12 Preparing for the Holidays Photos by Ken Graham

This month we got out our camera and put on our walking shoes and went looking for holiday decorations. (No, we didn’t walk to Waitsburg, but we thought about it.) Everywhere we looked, people were hard at work getting our local landmarks decked out in their holiday finest.

The Arts Photos from "The Music Man" 6-7 You Can't Have a Musical

More 4-5,11 News Briefs Without Music 10,14 Holiday Celebrations 15 History Business News Mace Meadworks to Open Soon in 8-9 Dayton / Dayton Wine Works Opens 16-21 Calendar of Events Tasting Room for the Holidays 18 Real Estate More Thing . . . : 23 One Have Yourself a Digital On the Cover "Preparing for the Holidays" Design by Vanessa Saldivar Heim Quote by Norman Vincent Peale

by Ken Graham

Blue Mountain News is mailed FREE to every home and business in Dayton, Waitsburg, Starbuck and Prescott.

Ken Graham

Also available at fine retailers throughout the area. Subscriptions out of the area are $12 per year.

Tanya Patton

Blue Mountain News is published ten times per year by: Back of the Moon Press, 242 E. Main St., Dayton, WA 99328

(509) 540-2752

Copyright Š 2010 by Back of the Moon Press No part of this publication may be reproduced without the written permission of the publisher.

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Editor and Publisher (509) 540-2752

Associate Editor & Advertising Representative (509) 382-4458 (509) 540-4644

Vanessa Heim Graphic Designer



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218 W. Main St. Dayton, WA (509) 382-2501 December 2010 Blue Mountain NEWS

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Photo Briefs Smith Hollow School Arrives at its New Home

The Smith Hollow Schoolhouse made a relatively uneventful trip from northern Columbia County to its new home on the bank of the Touchet River near Downtown Dayton in early November. According to Dayton Depot Museum curator Ginny Butler, who is working with the Blue Mountain Heritage Society (BMHS) on the moving process, the building will be placed on its foundation and a new pitched roof installed before the end of this year. Beginning in June 2011, BMHS hopes to begin work on restoring the building and rebuilding an addition that was dismantled. Butler says progress will depend on the success of fundraising efforts in the next few months, but the group hopes to complete much of the needed work in 2011. (Photo by Ken Graham.)

Library Gets New Drop Box The Columbia County Rural Library District recently installed a large book drop box near the alley on the north side of the Dayton Memorial Library. Patrons can drive right up to the box to return library materials and patrons on foot can avoid climbing the stairs to make their returns. “We installed the drop box to meet an expressed need,” says District Director Janet Lyon. “Many people, especially senior patrons and handicapped individuals asked us to make our book return more accessible.” Lyon plans to put gravel in front of the box soon so vehicles and patrons don’t have to contend with mud and ruts in the winter months. (Photo by Diane Patton)

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News Brief C. W. and Friends Dog Grooming Opens on Dayton’s Main Street Cindy Joy has been a dog lover for many years and has turned that love into a profession in Dayton. Her new business at 139 E. Main Street offers a number of services for local dog owners. Cindy operated her grooming business out of her home in Dayton for two years starting in 2003. She moved to western Washington for two years in 2005, but moved back to Dayton this summer. She opened her business November 1st. “We offer full grooming services,” says Cindy, “including bathing, brushing, haircutting and nail clipping.” In addition to grooming, C. W. and Friends offers daycare for dogs and pet photography, and sells a number of pet-related products. The west side of her building will be set up for the photography portion of her business. "I'll be doing pet photography during Kick-off," says Cindy. "I have some great computer generated backdrops that make the photos really cute."

Cindy Joy spends time in her shop with Winston (left) and Chelsea, whose initials were the inspiration for the name of her new business.

“Sometime next year we hope to begin offering obedience classes for puppies,” says Cindy. Cindy also hopes to be able to offer boarding for dogs at some point, if zoning issues can be worked out with the City of Dayton. Cindy encourages dog owners who plan to spend the day away from home to consider making arrangements for daycare. The cost is just $3 an hour or $18 for the day. Fido can have

Letters Invited

a fun play day instead of being home alone. "More and more people are treating their dogs like members of the family," says Cindy. "You wouldn't leave your child home alone, would you?" Cindy hopes her doggy daycare services will appeal to skiers who come to Bluewood for the day or shoppers who need to spend more than a few hours away from home. C. W. and Friends’ hours are 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. Cindy says she’s very flexible in her hours for daycare customers, and doggie daycare is also available Saturdays by appointment.

Blue Mountain News welcomes letters to the editor on subjects of interest to our overall readership. Letters should be 400 words or less and should be submitted by the 20th of the month. We reserve the right to edit or decline letters. Please send to: or 242 E. Main St., Dayton, WA 99328

December 2010 Blue Mountain NEWS

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The Arts "The Music Man" Stirs Up Excitement at the Liberty Theater

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The Arts You Can’t Have a “Musical” Without Music By Ken Graham

The Music Man

he musical score for Meredith Willson’s “The Music Man” includes 45 songs. If you are attending this year’s production of “The Music Man” at Dayton’s Liberty Theater, you will get to hear every one of them, performed live by an orchestra comprised of eleven local musicians.


Carolyn is a native of the Colfax area and studied performance piano at the University of Washington in Seattle. When she took the job in Dayton in 1981, she and her husband, Paul, purchased farmland in Columbia County, which they have farmed since.

The orchestra is directed by Carolyn Rundell, who is the former music teacher for Dayton schools. Carolyn organized the orchestra that accompanies the on-stage performers throughout the production, playing such songs as “Ya Got Trouble”, “Pick-a-Little, Talk-a-Little” and the classic “Seventy Six Trombones”.

“My music background was just in vocal and piano,” says Carolyn, “so when I took the job in Dayton, which included teaching band, I had to learn a lot of instruments in a hurry.” Carolyn spent three months in Pullman and learned the basics of nearly every band instrument at the music department at WSU.

The Liberty Theater 344 E. Main Street, Dayton

This is the third year Carolyn has directed the orchestra for Dayton’s fall musical. She started right after she retired from the Dayton schools in 2008. “Our orchestra is a little larger this time than the last two years,” she says.

Four of the members of this year’s “Music Man” orchestra were in the orchestra nine years ago, including Tanya Patton, Jim Thorn, Dallas Dickinson and Jennie Dickinson.

Tickets available at the theater, or online at:

Because the list of musicians to choose from is limited in a small community, Carolyn has had to be creative in filling the important parts in the score. For instance no active (and willing) trombone players could be found in the DaytonWaitsburg area, so the trombone part is being played by Nicholas Pearson on the electric keyboard. “We also do quite a bit of shuffling at piano,” says Carolyn, “because Randy Pearson has to be on stage part of the time”. (He’s a member of the River City School Board/Barbershop Quartet.) When Randy is busy on stage, Jim Thorn sets aside his cello and takes over at piano.

In 2001 Jennie got out her tenor saxophone and played it for the first time in 18 years, joining the orchestra for TVAC Productions’ performance of “The Music Man” that year. Her sister, Dallas, hadn’t played her clarinet for 30 years when she joined the same orchestra.

For more information, call: (509) 382-1380

“Music has always been part of my life,” says Carolyn, who taught in Dayton for 25 years. She was the entire music department, teaching both instrumental and vocal music, from Kindergarten through high school.

5 Performances left: November 27th – December 4th

“I had to get out a fingering chart and figure it out all over again,” says Jennie. “And it took lots and lots of practice, but it’s been really enjoyable.” q

Above: River City Librarian Marion Paroo (Shelly Franklin) is accompanied by the "Music Man" orchestra, directed by Carolyn Rundell. Opposite Page, clockwise from top left: A traincar full of traveling salesmen (Jon Lovrack [left], Rich Hendricksen, Mark Franklin, Mike Luce and Chuck Reeves). Mayor George Shinn (played by former Dayton Mayor Bill Graham) expounds to his fellow "River Citizeans". Harold Hill (Mike Ferrians) tries to sweet talk a sceptical Marion. The "River City Boys' Band" prepares for its first performance. Harold Hill coaches the River City School Board Members (Played by the Waitsburg Quartet: Jack McCaw [left] Randy Pearson, Bob Patton and Chuck Reeves. Tommy Djilas (Cougar Henderson) gets everyone excited about the coming of the Wells Fargo Wagon. (Photos by Ken Graham)

December 2010 Blue Mountain NEWS

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Business News Mace Meadworks to Open Soon in Dayton Story and Photo By Ken Graham


hen he needed a job to supplement his income as a “starving artist”, Reggie Mace signed on as a seasonal worker at harvest time with Walla Walla’s Dunham Cellars. “It was about 60 to 80 hours a week, so it was pretty hard to do my other work,” says Reggie. That was in 2008, and within a few months, Reggie was a full time employee at Dunham. He was later promoted to Cellar Supervisor.

For the past two years, Reggie has made batches of his own red and white grape wines, using the facilities at Dunham Cellars. He purchased his own grapes and rented the equipment. “I’ll probably continue to make red wine at Dunham, because they have a lot of great equipment that I can’t justify buying,” he says. “We’ll make mead here in Dayton, and probably white grape wine as well.”

During this time Reggie worked closely with Dunham’s winemaker, Dan Wampfler. “It was the best wine education I could have gotten,” he says. “I decided that was a business I really wanted to get into.”

While the local business will be called Mace Meadworks, Reggie plans to offer a number of different wines under his business name, The Experimental Fermentation Company. “I hope to distribute wine in the Seattle and Portland areas, but customers will also be able to buy all our wine here in Dayton,” he says.

Reggie will soon open his own winemaking establishment, called Mace Meadworks, in downtown Dayton at 250 Main Street, in the former Bearpaw Trading Post building. His primary product will be mead, which is wine made from honey and water. “Mead was the first fermented beverage ever made,” says Reggie. He says it dates to prehistoric times. He plans to use honey from a number of beekeepers in the Dayton and Walla Walla area in the Mead he makes in Dayton. Reggie grew up in the Wenatchee area and received a degree in fine arts from Walla Walla University. He stayed in Walla Walla and began showing his paintings in galleries in this area and in Portland and Seattle. “I was able to get my work shown, but didn’t sell enough to support myself,” he says, “so my job at Dunham started out as a way to supplement my income.” Reggie and his wife, Heather, bought a home in Dayton and moved here in 2008. He says they liked the feel of Dayton and were particularly attracted by the Liberty Theater. Reggie is now a member of the Touchet Valley Arts Council, which operates the theater.

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public opening of Mace Meadworks for New Years Eve. If his winemaking license is still pending, he will offer free tastings. If you’d like more information about Mace Meadworks, call Reggie Mace at (509) 540-0000. q

Reggie says he sees the creative process of making wine as similar to making visual art. And he hopes to carry his love of art into his new career as well. “Each label we use will have the work of an artist,” says Reggie, “and they’ll be able to get some income from the wine we sell.” When we met at his building, Reggie was in the middle of major construction work on its interior. “We will have a big aging room for barrels here,” he says, “and storage for cases of bottled wine as well.” A public area is planned in the front of the building where people can come in and taste wine and relax and enjoy the surroundings. “We want this to be a gathering area and not just a retail outlet,” he says. Reggie is tentatively planning the

Winemaker Reggie Mace shows off the barrel storage room at the soon-to-be new home of Mace Meadworks at 250 E. Main St. in Dayton.

Business News Dayton Wine Works Opens Tasting Room for the Holidays Story and Photo By Ken Graham


arl Cramer began making wine in 2005 in Grandview and moved his Abacus Winery to Pasco in 2007. It’s located near the Columbia River almost directly under the Cable Bridge, which provided the name for its signature “Cable Bridge” wine. “It’s purely a production facility,” says Cramer. “We’ve never had our own retail outlet until now.” When it came time to find a spot for a tasting room and retail sales outlet, Cramer discovered the former Patit Creek Winery location on Dayton’s Main Street, just east of Downtown. “We liked what we saw in Dayton,” says Cramer, “and this building was all set up for tasting and wine storage.” Dayton Wine Works offers a selection of about a dozen “value priced” wines. Varieties include Cabernet, Merlot and Red Table Wine, along with Syrah and Riesling. Most are Columbia Valley wines.

three bottles, called “Old Iron”. The set includes cabernet, merlot and meritage red table wine, with special agriculturalthemed labels. Only 100 of the gift boxes will be sold. Cramer also created a special Stationmaster Wine, in honor of the dedication of Keith McMasters’ Stationmaster sculpture at the Dayton Depot in October. During Dayton’s Christmas Kickoff celebration, on Friday evening beginning at 4:00 p.m., Dayton Wine Works will hold a pre-fireworks party, serving wine and snacks during the lighted parade and fireworks display. There will be heaters on the outdoor patio Cramer encourages people to arrive before 5:00, as Main Street will be closed soon after for the parade. Dayton Wine Works is open Thursday through Saturday from noon until 8:00 p.m. and Sunday from noon until 6:00 p.m. q

Besides the “Dayton Wine Works” and “Cable Bridge” wines, Cramer is selling several specialty label wines, including “Lured In” Merlot, with a special label to appeal to anglers, and an agriculture commemorative gift box of

Carl Cramer, of Dayton Wine Works, offers a taste of Reisling to a visitor.

December 2010 Blue Mountain NEWS

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Holiday Season "Kicks Off" in Downtown Dayton


By Ken Graham

ireworks aren’t just for the Fourth of July. Dayton takes Christmas celebrations seriously, and those celebrations start with a bang.

Once again this year, Dayton’s two-day Christmas Kickoff celebration gets into full swing the day after Thanksgiving, Friday, November 26th with . . .

Fireworks A full day of activities on Friday will be capped by a giant fireworks display just east of downtown right after dinnertime. The Fireworks are sponsored by Pacific Power. Main Street Lighted Parade The fireworks come on the heels of Dayton’s second annual Main Street Lighted Parade. This year, organizers are expecting more than forty floats and other entries to light up downtown Dayton starting at 6:00 p.m. Participants will be on foot and in vehicles, ranging from bicycles to fire trucks – all lit up for Christmas. Don’t miss all the Croft’s Characters, including Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus, Frosty the Snowman, polar bears and gingerbread people. The parade begins on East Main Street at North Fifth, near the Seneca office building. It will move west through downtown, turning right on North First Street and right

again on East Commercial, past the Dayton Historic Depot and back to Fourth Street, before ending where it started at Fifth and Main. The Main Street Lighted Parade is sponsored by Inland Cellular. Hay Rides Downtown Free hay rides will be given to the public Friday and Saturday from 12:30 to 3:30 p.m. Doug Krueger’s muledrawn wagon will be on the street during those hours, weather permitting. The Hay Rides are sponsored by Puget Sound Energy. Santa Claus Kids can visit Santa on Friday and Saturday at the corner of Second and Main Streets. Bring your own camera, or have Relay for Life members take the kids’ photo, with a five dollar donation. Santa’s hours are 3:00 to 7:00 p.m. Friday and 1:30 to 4:00 p.m. Saturday. Warming Station on Main Street The Columbia County Health System and the Waitsburg Co-op Preschool are co-sponsoring a warming station at 202 E. Main Street, in the former PC Solutions office. It will be open from noon to 9:00 p.m. Friday and 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Saturday. The public is welcome to come in, warm up and buy some goodies at the Waitsburg Co-op Preschool parents’ fundraising bake sale.

Frosty the Snowman "floats" down Main Street during the 2009 Main Street Lighted Parade (Photo courtesy of Croft's Floral)

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News Briefs

Here are some other Christmas Kickoff Highlights:

Fair Association Makes Opportunities for Giving Changes, Looks to 2011 are Many

• The Liberty Theater will offer three showings of the animated movie Megamind, featuring the voices of Will Ferrell, Tina Fey and Brad Pitt. The movie will play at 1:00 p.m., 4:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. • From 3:00 to 5:00 p.m. Friday, visitors to downtown can view a live nativity scene in the lot behind Dingle’s of Dayton. • Christmas carolers from the DHS Music Department will provide a roving show, singing Christmas songs from around the world. • From 4:00 to 7:00 p.m. Friday on Main Street, food and beverages will be available, including hot dogs by Kiwanis, hot cocoa by Young Life members and lots more. • The Dayton Historic Depot will feature their annual Christmas Market and art display and sale upstairs. Artworks by local artists will be available for sale along with high-quality handcrafted gifts. Hours are 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Friday and 10:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturday. Don’t miss the Artists’ Reception Friday from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. • The Boldman House museum will be open for tours from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. Friday and Saturday.

The Columbia County Fair Association held its annual membership meeting November 15 th at the Fairgrounds. Approximately 30 people attended to elect officers and directors and discuss and adopt changes to the by-laws of the Association. Officers elected to lead the Association through 2011 were Miranda Bowen, President; Debbie Bailey, Vice-President; Christine Broughton, Secretary; and Barbara Fullerton, Treasurer. Three new directors were elected to three year terms: Glenn Hagfeldt, Merle Myrick and Chuck Amerein. The membership boundary for the Association was also changed. Membership has been limited to residents of Columbia County in the past. Now anyone living within the boundaries of the Columbia County Hospital District is eligible for membership. “The new boundary means that high school students living in Waitsburg are now eligible to apply for host or hostess

positions,” says Fair Manager, Shane Laib. Host/hostess applications are available now at Dayton and Waitsburg high schools and at the Columbia County Extension Office. The 2011 Fair theme will be announced March 26th at a special kick-off event. The hosts and/or hostesses of the 2011 fair will also be announced then, but the work of planning and lining up entertainment has already begun. “You have to book entertainers early if you want quality acts,” says Laib. Association members are now required to have a membership form filled out and on file with the Association Secretary. Only members are allowed to vote at the annual meeting, although the public is always encouraged to attend meetings to provide input and offer volunteer assistance.

The Dayton Food Bank, which is located next to Dayton City Hall on Clay Street, serves about 150 families a month. That’s over 400 people. Twenty new families sought assistance in November alone. The Food Bank takes donations of cash and perishable and nonperishable food. Between 6,000 and 8,000 pounds of food is distributed in an average month, but in November over 11,000 pounds went out. The Food Bank is open Tuesdays from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m. Donations can be made by calling (509) 382-2137 or (509) 382-2322 to arrange for a pick up. The Wishing Tree will be at the Country Cupboard Bakery in Dayton again this year, beginning Friday, November 26th. The tree will be decorated with 100 star shaped tags, each representing a child in need of help to have a merry Christmas. “Thirty-six families are represented on the tree this year,” says coordinator Rosy Nechodom.

Each tag gives the age and gender of a child as well as one need and one want for Christmas. Simply purchase an item, wrap it and return it, with the original star-shaped tag, to the Country Cupboard before the 18th of December. Nechodom will also accept cash donations to help purchase gifts for children who either don’t get picked off the tree or aren’t identified until after the tree is put up. Project Timothy distributed 80 Christmas baskets filled with the makings for a hearty holiday dinner last December. This year, they hope to receive enough food and cash donations to fill at least 65 baskets. Twenty donation cans are in retailers throughout Dayton. Dayton High School student Kyndall Tiedemann is helping coordinate the Christmas Basket drive as her senior project. Baskets will be filled at St. Joseph’s Parish Hall and distributed to families on December 11th.

• The Weinhard Hotel will feature live music performances in the lobby from 3:00 to 7:00 p.m. Friday and from 5:00 to 6:00 p.m. Saturday. • The Weinhard Hotel will also play host to a square dancing exhibition by “Family a-Fair”, a folk dancing group from Kennewick, on Saturday afternoon between 1:00 and 4:00 p.m. Come out to the hotel parking lot to watch. • For the comfort of everyone, Port-a-potties will be in place all around downtown during Christmas Kickoff. In addition to all of these activities, most Main Street retailers, and other businesses, will be open late Friday and will feature special activities Friday and Saturday. See the insert in your Blue Mountain News for a complete listing, or go to q

December 2010 Blue Mountain NEWS

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Special Photo Feature

Preparing for the Holidays This month we got out our camera and put on our walking shoes and went looking for holiday decorations.* Everywhere we looked, people were hard at work getting our local landmarks decked out in their holiday finest. Here are a few of the many photos we got. We hope you enjoy them. *No, we didn’t walk to Waitsburg, but we walked around once we got there. Clockwise from lower left: Ken Much, of Pacific Power, unrolls a Christmas banner and prepares to attach it to a light pole on Dayton’s Main Street. The red banners, along with the flag at the Veterans’ Memorial, provide a colorful display for motorists entering Dayton. Dayton Historic Depot Society board member Brad McMasters got the job of attaching wreaths to the upper deck of the Depot. The wreaths are easily visible at night. Jim German, owner of jimgermanbar in Waitsburg, donned a furry hat and went to the roof to mount white lights along the parapets of the two buildings he and his wife, Claire, own. Claire operates the Amo Art gallery on the left. Seth Teeters, who became the new maintenance supervisor at the Columbia County Court House earlier this year, installs lights at the top of the courthouse cupola. Seth spent considerable time rounding up and testing lights and other Christmas decorations, so the courthouse would look its best during Dayton’s Christmas Kickoff celebration.

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Photos by Ken Graham

December 2010 Blue Mountain NEWS

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Events Waitsburg Hometown Christmas Returns to Ye Towne Hall

Many of the buildings in downtown Waitsburg will sport white Christmas lights along their parapets this season, thanks to the Commercial Club. Ye Towne Hall (at left) will once again host this year's Hometown Christmas. (Photo by Ken Graham)

Story and Photo By Ken Graham


fter a temporary move to the Waitsburg Elementary School last year, Waitsburg’s Hometown Christmas returns to the newly renovated Ye Towne Hall on December 4th and 5th. The Commercial Club has another excellent lineup of activities for the whole family: Turkey Bingo will be held on Saturday, December 4th at 4:00 p.m. Festivities will begin with the American Legion Auxiliary’s annual event at the Towne Hall. The games begin with lots of turkeys and other prizes being given away. Craft Venders will set up at the Towne Hall at noon on Sunday, December 5th and will offer a wonderful selection of hand-made gifts and other products. Rainbow Girls will be serving free coffee and cookies throughout Sunday afternoon. The Waitsburg Rainbow Girls club includes 14 girls ranging in age from 11 through 18. Christmas Carolers from the Waitsburg Schools will sing Christmas songs at the Towne Hall throughout the afternoon. Santa Claus will be taking requests all afternoon at the Towne Hall beginning at 1:30 Sunday. Kids are invited to come and sit on Santa’s lap, and parents are invited to

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bring cameras and take photos. Special Merchandise Drawings will be held beginning at 3:30 p.m. Sunday. Drawing tickets are available at retailers in Waitsburg. Gifts and prizes have been donated by merchants from Waitsburg, Dayton and Walla Walla. The Commercial Club has also donated gift certificates. Must be present to win! Waitsburg’s Christmas Lighted Parade – will begin at the north end of Main Street at 5:00 p.m. Sunday. Anyone with or without wheels is invited to light up their vehicle and/or themselves and take part. Trucks and farm equipment are particularly invited. Santa will make an appearance in the parade as well. If you’re not participating, please come and watch. Chili Feed – At the conclusion of the parade, Waitsburg’s Christmas Chili Feed will begin at Ye Towne Hall, sponsored by the Commercial Club. q

History Boldman House Museum Dresses for Holidays


hen Gladys Boldman died in 1999, she left her home and all of its contents, along with a sizable endowment, to the Dayton Historical Depot Society. Per Miss Boldman’s wishes, the home has been restored to its original condition and is now a museum. Work on the Boldman House was completed earlier this year. During this holiday season, Boldman House Museum Manager Elisabeth Franklin is showing visitors some of the Boldman family’s collection of Christmas ornaments and decorations that have been brought out for display. A number of vintage Christmas cards and vintage toys from the family’s collection are also being shown. Elisabeth was hired as manager in June. The job is a natural fit for her, since she worked at the museum as a volunteer when she was in high school. Elisabeth grew up in Dayton and graduated from Dayton High School in 2006. She graduated from the University of Idaho with a degree in History in 2009. The Boldman House Museum, located at 410 North First Street in Dayton, will be open regular hours, Fridays and Saturdays from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m., through the holiday season. During Christmas Kickoff Weekend, November 26th and 27th, Elisabeth and other docents will wear period dress. A special reading of “The Night Before Christmas” will be given, and a list of Boldman Family Recipes will be available for visitors. Admission to the Boldman House Museum will be free during Christmas Kickoff weekend. q

Top left: Boldman House Museum Manager Elisabeth Franklin, in period dress, shows off some of the vintage Christmas cards on display in the home's upstairs master bedroom. Left: Marna Moore and Ginny Butler place some of the Boldman family's vintage Christmas tree ornaments on the tree in the home's living room. (Photos by Ken Graham.)

December 2010 Blue Mountain NEWS

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Featured Events

DEC. 2010 December 6th Ladies' Night Out Starting at 5:30 p.m. Dayton Main Street Retailers

Ladies! Grab a friend or two or ten and enjoy an evening of Wish List making and special refreshments at a variety of shops on Dayton’s Main Street. Participating retailers will stay open late into the evening. Your wish lists stay “on file” at each store in order to make holiday shopping easy and “guess-free” for your husband, brother, children and friends! Men’s Night Out (to shop) is Dec 21st.

December 21st Men’s Night Out Starting at 5:30 p.m. Downtown Dayton Retailers Men, you’ve procrastinated long enough. Now is the time to shop! Hopefully, the lady in your life has filled out her wish lists at Dayton retailers, but if she hasn’t, merchants will be glad to make your shopping experience as easy and pleasant as possible – wrapping too!

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November 26-27

Dayton’s Christmas Kickoff See page 10 for complete information for this annual holiday kickoff!


Taste of Fireworks 4:00 – 7:00 p.m. Dayton Wine Works 507 E. Main Street Enjoy a pre-fireworks party on the patio (complete with outdoor space heaters) and a front row seat for Dayton’s Christmas Kickjoff fireworks display! See the article on page 9 for more information about Dayton’s newest winery.

Artist’s Reception for Andrea Lyman

4:00 – 7:00 p.m. Wenaha Gallery 219 E.Main Street, Dayton Sandpoint resident, Andrea Lyman, creates unique hand-crafted jewelry, scented sachets, note cards and more. Her jewelry is described as “wearable art”. Come meet this very talented artist and enjoy a large selection of her oneof-a-kind creations. Visit www.wenaha. com or call (509) 382-2124 for more information.

Palus Museum Exhibit Special hours - 1:00 to 8:00 p.m. Palus Museum 426 E. Main, Dayton "School Art: Creativity for a Lifetime" is the title of a new exhibit at the Palus Museum. A number of Columbia County residents have loaned their creative endeavers from school days for this exhibit. It is fun to see their 'school day art' next to their recent work.   Early day schools offered Industrial Arts for the boys and  Domestic Science for the girls. You will enjoy seeing examples of each in this special exhibit. For the children who come with their parents there will be handson activities. Weaving a placemat can be done independently by your child, but you will want to assist in creating a silhouette of your child--just like we did in bygone days! The exhibit will be in place through December 18th. Regular Hours: Friday and Saturday,

1:00 – 4:00 p.m. For more information, contact Jacque Sonderman at (509) 382-8919.

Live Comedian: Chris Warren 7:00 p.m. with live music to follow. Woody’s Bar & Grill 214 E. Main, Dayton

Live Music with Steven Eidt Starting at 7:00 p.m. Skye Book & Brew 148 E. Main, Dayton Don’t miss Steven’s entertaining and accomplished singing and guitar playing.

Boldman House Open House 1:00 – 4:00 p.m. 410 N. First Street, Dayton FREE Admission Step back in time at the Boldman House. The lovingly restored Queen-Anne style home, now museum, will be decorated with period Christmas decorations. Enjoy a reading of the Night Before Christmas, caroling, free family recipes and docents in period costumes.

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Live @ Sapolil Jimmy Holden Review 8:00 – 11:00 p.m. 15 E. Main Street, Walla Walla The Great Jimmy Holden on Keyboard will perform with Gary Winston and friends. No Cover.

December 3-5

and jazz all wrapped around a blues core. $15 Ticket - Limited Availability (Tickets Available Now)

Starting at 4:00 p.m. Ye Towne Hall Downtown Waitsburg

Oldies Music Night

Join your friends and neighbors for an evening of Bingo fun and maybe win a turkey for your Christmas dinner. Sponsored by the Waitsburg American Legion Auxiliary Post #35.

7:30 – 10:30 p.m. Milton-Freewater City Library Albee Room 8 SW 8th Avenue Always the first Friday of the month… Library Director Bob Jones presents a program of oldies music from his personal collection of over 15,000 CDs. Every program is planned around a theme. Milton-Freewater Public Library, 8 Southwest Eighth Avenue.


Walla Walla Valley Holiday Barrel Final Weekend! Tasting The Music Man Amidst the festive atmosphere of the season, winemakers and their cellar staffs provide samples of future releases. In the true spirit of the Valley, each winery participates in its own unique way, offering a variety of features including art, music, culinaria and more. Many use the event to raise funds and awareness for a host of worthy causes. For more information visit: or call (509) 526-3117.


Live @ Sapolil - The Randy Oxford Band 8:00 – 11:00 p.m. 15 E Main, Walla Walla For several months Randy Oxford has been booking bands for ‘The Randy Oxford Blues Series, Live @ Sapolil’. Wrapping up this year, the man and the band themselves will perform. Tacoma based and award winning, this headliner blues tombone based 6-piece band presents 21st century "Americana" rock, soul, funk, R&B

7:00 p.m. Friday 3:00 p.m. Saturday Liberty Theater Downtown Dayton Don’t miss TVAC’s 2010 production of The Music Man! Purchase tickets online at or by calling (509) 382-1380.

Holiday Bazaar Art Show & Sale 9:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. (Friday) 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. (Saturday) Maple Spinners Hall Corner of 7th and Columbia Street Pomeroy, WA The Blue Mountain Artisan Guild will have an art show and sale at Pomeroy’s annual Holiday Bazaar. This is a judged show with a $50.00 prize for Best of Show.


Waitsburg Turkey Bingo

Prescott Community Christmas Dinner Kids’ Crafts at 4:30 p.m. Dinner at 6:00 p.m. Prescott Community Center You don’t have to live in Prescott to enjoy great food, friends and fun at this annual community dinner that drew over 100 people last year! Nevada Slim and Cimarron Sue will lead the caroling starting at 7:00 p.m.. The Prescott Community Club provides the turkey, ham and all the traditional fixings and beverages. Attendees are encouraged to bring a side dish or dessert to share but it’s not required. Goody bags and craft activities are planned for the kids. For more information, contact Libby at (509) 849-2621 or Sue at (509) 849-2825.

Christmas Tea 3:00 p.m. Country Cupboard Bakery 330 E. Main, Dayton Reservations are required for this elegant Christmas Tea. Enjoy gourmet delicacies and fine tea served on English china in the company of friends. Call the Bakery at (509) 382-2215 to make your reservations.

Live @ Sapolil – Rob Rigoni 8:00 – 11:00 p.m. 15 E Main, Walla Walla Rob is an electrifying guitarist and showman, weaving stories, humor and great music into a sizzling trop-rock experience. Rob's guitar work has been compared to David Gilmour, Carlos Santana, Peter Frampton and others. No Cover.

15th Annual Macy's Holiday Parade of Lights Starting at 6:00 p.m. Downtown Walla Walla Come watch this great parade as a kick-off to the Holidays! Sponsored by the Downtown Walla Walla Foundation.


Waitsburg Hometown Christmas Please refer to article on page 14 for complete information on this oldfashioned, hometown Christmas event in “one-of-a-kind” Waitsburg.


Ladies' Night Out Starting at 5:30 p.m. Dayton Main Street Retailers

Ladies! Grab a friend or two or ten and enjoy an evening of Wish List making and special refreshments at a variety of shops on Dayton’s Main Street. Participating retailers will stay open late into the evening. Your wish lists stay “on file” at each store in order to make holiday shopping easy and “guess-free” for your husband, brother, children and friends! Men’s Night Out (to shop) is Dec 21st.


Kid’s Night to Shop 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. Ye Towne Hall Downtown Waitsburg A wide variety of vendors will set up “shop” in Ye Towne Hall so children can buy Christmas gifts for everyone on their list. All items are under $10 in price

December 2010 Blue Mountain NEWS

Page 17

Real Estate

Welcome to Waitsburg – Dr. Kyle and Margaret Terry


he Vaughan Hubbard home on Orchard Street in Waitsburg was built in 1956 and was in the Hubbard family for half a century. In 2006, the home and property were purchased by winemaker Charles Smith, who also owns two buildings on Waitsburg’s Main Street. In November, Dr. Kyle Terry and his wife, Margaret, purchased the Hubbard home from Mr. Smith, and they now reside there. Dr. Terry joined the Columbia County Health System in July and is CCHS’s physician at the Waitsburg Clinic.

“Here he rides everywhere,” says Margaret, “and he loves it here.” Cameron also loves to ski, and he has joined the Bluewood Alpine Race Team. Dr. Terry is a native of Utah, and moved to California after completing Medical School. Margaret is a native of the Delano area and worked as an emergency room nurse at the hospital there, where she met Dr. Terry.

The Terrys moved to Waitsburg from Bakersfield, California. Dr. Terry was in private practice in the nearby town of Delano for nearly 23 years. He sold the practice to his partner prior to taking the position in Waitsburg.

When he’s not working, Dr. Terry enjoys playing his acoustic guitar and has been a regular participant in the monthly Bluegrass Jam Sessions at Skye Book and Brew in Dayton. “My other son, who is an attorney in Portland, came to visit,” says Dr. Terry, “and we both had a great time at one of the recent jam sessions.” He says his son is an accomplished electric guitar player.

“We felt it was time to leave California and the pollution and congestion in the Bakersfield area,” says Margaret Terry. “We were ready for a relaxed small town like Waitsburg.”

The Terrys plan to make some minor upgrades to their house, but no major changes. The home comes with a considerable amount of property, and they are making plans for some new landscaping in the spring. q

Two of the Terrys’ four grown children have settled in the Portland area, so the couple was anxious to find a new location in the Northwest. “We’re working on getting another daughter to move up this way too,” says Margaret. “I think we’ve almost convinced her.” The Terrys also have an 11-year-old son, Cameron, who is attending school in Waitsburg. “Waitsburg is a wonderful town for our son,” says Dr. Terry. “In Bakersfield, we would never let him ride off on his bicycle by himself.”

Page 18 Blue Mountain NEWS December 2010

Story and photo by Ken Graham

Below: Dr. Kyle Terry and his wife Margaret, in front of thier new home in Waitsburg.

Events and FREE gift wrapping is available on site. Contact Rose Engelbrite for more information at (509) 337-8875. Sponsored by the Waitsburg American Legion Auxiliary Post #35.


Time out for Tea 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. Delany Room Dayton Memorial Library 111 S. Third Street Ladies are invited to a Christmas themed tea. Come with a friend or make a new friend while enjoying tea and lunch. There is no cost and onsite childcare is provided. Contact Annie Nelson at (509) 382-2248 for more information.

Acoustic Jam Night 6:30 p.m. Skye Book & Brew 148 E. Main, Dayton Play an instrument? Grab it and enjoy an evening sharing your talents with fellow musicians and an appreciative audience. Contact Mike at (509) 3824677 for more information.

Live @ Sapolil – The B Side 8:00 – 11:00 p.m. 15 E Main, Walla Walla Phil Lynch and Kate Morrison perform a soulful and eclectic mix of music. From blues to jazz, re-mixes and just about anything they want! No Cover.


Karaoke Night 8:00 p.m. to midnight Tuxedo Bar & Grill Prescott, WA (509) 849-2244 Show off your vocal talents or cheer on your friends!

Live @ Sapolil – Bluestone Trio 8:00 – 11:00 p.m. 15 E Main, Walla Walla Bluestone is one of the best jazz groups around, based in the Tri-Cities. They perform jazz, blues, grooves and standards for dancing and listening. No Cover.


Tree of Life Ceremony 7:00 p.m. Die Brucke Building Corner of Main and First Walla Walla The Walla Walla Community Hospice is sponsoring the twenty-fourth annual Tree of Life tree and candle lighting ceremony. The ceremony includes the reading of the names in the Tree of Life book, music, candle lighting and refreshments. In coordination with the ceremony, individuals may dedicate a light on the tree in memory of or in honor of a loved one for a donation of $10.   The name of the honored person is printed on a paper tree ornament

and placed on the tree, and is also inscribed in the Tree of Life book. For a contribution of $25, donors may also request a glass tree ornament.  This year a reindeer and star design is beautifully etched into beveled glass. Lights and ornaments may be purchased at the Hospice office (8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Monday – Friday), or by calling WWCH at (509) 525-5561.  Order information is also on the WWCH website at www.


Blue Mountain Heritage Society Program 7:00 p.m. Delany Room Dayton Memorial Library 111 S 3rd Street The program, “Traveling along the Lewis and Clark Trail”, will be presented by Nathan Riley whose Thronson grandparents were early settlers in Columbia County. Now a resident of Walla Walla, Mr. Riley has enjoyed world travel, but last spring decided to travel along the Lewis

and Clark trail ---first back to Iowa where he had lived and worked. On his return to Walla Walla, he again, followed the trail. Join us to view photographs and hear insights into the 1803-1805 journey of Lewis and Clark, a topic that is still near and dear to all of us who live in Dayton where their ‘Forgotten Trail’ is our presentday Main Street. Enjoy refreshments and a brief report on the Smith Hollow School, the Palus Museum and other activities carried out this year by your Blue Mountain Heritage Society. Free and open to the public. Contact Jacque Sonderman at (509) 382-8919 for more information.


The Nutcracker 7:30 p.m. Cordiner Hall Whitman College Campus A holiday season classic…The entire family will enjoy watching the story of Clara and her nutcracker prince come alive on stage. The Walla Walla Symphony under the direction of Yaacov Bergman, performing with the Eugene Ballet Company, with Toni Pimble, Artistic Director, and Walla Walla area

December 2010 Blue Mountain NEWS

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Meetings American Legion Legion Hall, 211 E. Clay, Dayton 2nd and 4th Tuesday of the month at 7:00 p.m.

Dayton City Planning Commission Dayton City Hall 111 S 1st St, Dayton 3rd Monday at 5:15 p.m.

Blue Mountain Chorus of Sweet Adelines Unity Church of Peace, Walla Walla Airport. To carpool, call Barb Knopp at (509) 386-8901. Mondays at 6:30 p.m.

Dayton Historic Preservation Commission Dayton City Hall 111 S 1st St, Dayton 2nd Tuesday at 6:00 p.m.

Blue Mountain Heritage Society Delany Room at Dayton Memorial Library, 111 S. 3rd Contact Elizabeth Thorn at (509) 382-4820 2nd Tuesday at 1:00 p.m. Columbia County Commissioners Commissioners’ Chambers 3rd Floor, County Courthouse, Dayton. Call (509) 382-4542 1st and 3rd Monday at 10:00 a.m. and 4th Monday at 7:00 p.m. Columbia County Fair Board Youth Building at the Columbia County Fairgrounds, Dayton 3rd Monday at 7:30 p.m. Columbia County Fire District #3 Commissioners Fire District #3 Station 206 W. Main St, Dayton Call (509) 382-4281 2nd and 4th Thursday at 7:30 p.m. Columbia County Levee Roundtable Dayton City Hall 111 S. 1st St, Dayton Last Friday at 10:00 a.m. Columbia County Livestock Association Columbia County Fairgrounds Youth Building Randy James (509) 382-2760 1st Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. Columbia County Motorcycle Club Dayton D.O.T Building Contact Bret Harting for more information. (509) 382-4602 2nd Wednesday at 7:00 p.m Columbia County Planning Commission County Planning Office 2nd and 4th Monday at 7:00 p.m. Columbia County Rural Library District Board Dayton Memorial Library 111 S 3rd St, Dayton Call (509) 382-4131 2nd and 4th Tuesday at 7:00 p.m. Dayton City Council Dayton City Hall 111 S. 1st St, Dayton Call (509) 382-2361 2nd and 4th Monday at 7:00 p.m.

Dayton High School Alumni Association Sand Trap Restaurant 3rd Thursday Dinner at 6:00 p.m. Meeting at 7:00 p.m. Dayton Kiwanis Delany Room at Dayton Memorial Library 111 S Third St, Dayton 1st & 3rd Thurs. at Noon Dayton Lions Club Delany Room at Dayton Memorial Library, 111 S. 3rd Contact Terry Hoon for more information. (509) 386-8889 1st and 3rd Wednesday at 6:00 p.m. Dayton School Board Administration Building 609 S. 2nd St, Dayton Call (509) 382-2543 1st and 3rd Wednesday at 7:00 p.m.

Events Prescott Parks and Recreation District Board Community Center of the Lion’s Hall, corner of D St. & Hwy 124, Prescott. For more information contact Joan Tatum at (509) 849-2690. 2nd Thursday at 7:00 p.m. Prescott School Board Last Thursday at 7:00 p.m. Starbuck City Council Starbuck City Hall 200 Main St, Starbuck Call (509) 399-2100 2nd Tuesday at 7:00 p.m. Starbuck School Board Library of the Starbuck School 717 Tucannon, Starbuck 3rd Thursday at 5:30 p.m. TOPS (Take Off Pounds Sensibly) Dayton Dayton United Methodist Church 110 S. 3rd St, Dayton Every Tuesday at 8:45 a.m. Waitsburg City Council Lion’s Club Building at Waitsburg Fairgrounds Call (509) 337-6371 1st and 3rd Wednesday, 7:00 p.m.

Waitsburg Commercial Club Ye Towne Hall 121 Main Street, Waitsburg (509) 337-6533 Dayton Wyldlife 1st and 3rd Tuesday Dayton Elementary School at 6:30 p.m. Multi-Purpose Room 302 E. Park St, Dayton Waitsburg Economic 3rd Friday at 7:00 p.m. Development Committee Friends of the Dayton Nothing New Antiques Memorial Library First Monday at Dayton Memorial Library 10:00 a.m. 111 S 3rd St, Dayton 4th Wednesday Waitsburg Historical at 10:00 a.m. Society Call Anita Baker for Port of Columbia more information: Commissioners (509) 337-6157 Port Office 1 Port Way, Dayton Waitsburg Legion and 2nd Wednesday Auxiliary at 7:30 p.m. For location information call Ike and B.A Keve Prescott City Council at (509) 337-6546 Prescott City Hall First Monday at 7:00 p.m. 101 S D Street, Prescott Call (509) 849-2262 Waitsburg Lions Club 2nd Monday at 7:30 p.m. Lions Memorial Building Waitsburg Fairgrounds Scott Branson, President Prescott Community Club (509) 337-8895 Prescott Lions Hall 2nd & 4th Tuesdays at (509) 849-2892 or 7:00 p.m. (509) 849- 2425 New members Waitsburg School Board always welcome. Second Thursday at 2:00 Preston Hall, Main St 2nd and 4th Wednesday p.m. at 8:00 p.m. Dayton Young Life 227 N. Cherry 2nd & 4th Mondays at 7:17 p.m.

Prescott Fire VFW Post 5549 Commissioners Call Tim Mayberry for info: Legion Hall 211 E Clay, Dayton (509) 849-2262 Contact Jerry Berg at (509) 382Prescott Lions Club 4525 for more info. Call Chris Scudder Refreshments served. for info: Every 3rd Wednesday (509) 849-2478 at 7:30 p.m.

Page 20 Blue Mountain NEWS December 2010

dancers under the supervision of Idalee Hutson-Fish. Visit www.wwsymphony. org for more information or call (509) 529-8020.

14, 17 & 18

halftime on Saturday the 18th and the winners notified. Two paintings and a hand-crafted wooden bowl will be raffled. Tickets are $1.00 each or 6 for $5.00. For more information call Mary Flerchinger at (509) 843-1350 or email us at


Benefit Art Sale & Raffle Pomeroy High School Gym Blue Mountain Artisan Guild will hold a benefit art sale / raffle during the Pomeroy home basketball games. All the raffle money and half of the art sale money will go to benefit the Pomeroy High School Art Department. Pomeroy will play Dayton on the 14th. Three art pieces will be raffled off. Tickets will be sold at each game. The winning tickets will be drawn at

Christian Women’s Connection Luncheon Home Baked Christmas 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. Seneca Activity Center Dayton Cost: $9 - Catered by: CWC Planning Team HOME MADE MUSIC - Once again the WallaWalla Valley Academy Bell

This Month at

The Dayton Memorial Library 111 S. 3rd Street (509) 382-4131

Kids' Christmas Craft Day

Book Discussion and Christmas Party

Saturday, December 4th Noon - 2:00 p.m. Children of all ages are invited to get creative at the library. All craft supplies and refreshments provided.

Friday, December 10th 3:15 - 4:15 p.m. Youth are invited and encouraged to read Laurie Halse Anderson's book, Chains, then come to the library to discuss the book and enjoy Christmas refreshments!

Adult Basic Computer Class

Toddler Storytime

Preschool Storytime

Tuesdays: 11:30 - 11:45 a.m. Simple activities to help develop babys' listening and pre-language skills.

Tuesdays: 10:00 - 11:00 a.m. In December: Internet, email, library website and databases. Space is limited to 9 participantscome early. Mondays: 2:30 - 3:15 p.m. Storytime and crafts for children ages 4-6.

Tuesdays: 11:00 - 11:30 a.m. Fun and developmentallyappropriate interactive activities for children ages 18 months to 3 years. Led by Sue Hagfeldt.

Baby Storytime

For more information about any of these activities, call the library at (509) 382-4131.

Events Choir will be performing for us. Their beautiful music will lift your spirits. HOME MADE FUN Our speaker, Lynne Franz, is from Hermiston. Lynne has long been a popular speaker for women’s groups and retreats. Her humor delights her audiences. She is recently retired as a Junior High Language Arts teacher. HOME MADE COOKIES - Our special feature will be some very special cookies, baked with love, for everyone! RESERVATIONS ARE NECESSARY. Please call Judy Jackson at (509) 3992005. Please honor your reservation, “gift” it to a friend, or call to cancel if your plans change. BABYSITTING IS AVAILABLE. Sponsored by Christian Women’s Connection and Stonecroft Ministries,


Late Night @ Sapolil Rocky Horror Picture Show 8:00 p.m. – 2:00 a.m. 15 E Main, Walla Walla Dammit Janet! Put on your fishnets, and let’s do the Time Warp! Come dressed as your favorite Rocky Horror character and you could win a prize. DJ Rickie will kick it up all night, during the movie then on until the wee hours! No Cover.


Live @ Sapolil - The Cut. Can You Make It? SEMI FINALS 8:00 – 11:00 p.m. 15 E Main, Walla Walla Winners from this local showcase compete to make the Final Cut. Each drink purchase allows guests to vote for the best! The winner of this night gets $100! $5 Cover (includes one vote card).


Enjoy an evening of Christmas music and song with your friends and neighbors! Call (509) 382-1380 for more information.

8:00 p.m. – midnight Tuxedo Bar & Grill Prescott, WA (509) 849-2244

Christmas Concert

LIVE Music: The Amarillo Band

Live @ Sapolil – The Cut. Can You Make It? More SEMI FINALS and THE FINAL CUT 8:00 p.m. – 1:00 a.m. 15 E Main, Walla Walla The remaining group of winners competes for $100. Then the FINAL CUT is determined by a competition of both semi-final winners. The winner of this FINAL CUT will be awarded a $500 prize! $5 Cover (includes one vote card).


All-You-CanEat Breakfast

Waitsburg High School 7:00 p.m. WHS Auditorium


Men’s Night Out

January 2

100th Birthday Gala for Sarah Lyman 2:00 – 4:00 p.m. Booker Rest Home Dining Room Dayton, WA Please join Sarah Lyman’s family in honoring Sarah on this very special birthday.

Starting at 5:30 p.m. Downtown Dayton Retailers Men, you’ve procrastinated long enough. Now is the time to shop! Hopefully, the lady in your life has filled out her wish lists at Dayton retailers, but if she hasn’t, merchants will be glad to make your shopping experience as easy and pleasant as possible – wrapping too!


Merry Christmas!

8:00 – 11:00 a.m. Prescott Community Center Enjoy a hearty home-cooked breakfast and help raise money for the Prescott community. Menu includes eggs, hashbrowns, pancakes, sausage, bacon and more! Cost is just $5.99. Contact Jeanne McIntyre at (509) 849-2425 for more information.     


Community Christmas Concert


Eastern Time Zone New Year’s Eve with Bobby K and Mike 7:00 – 9:00 p.m. Skye Book & Brew 148 E. Main, Dayton (509) 382-4677 A New Year’s Eve party for folks who don’t want to stay up late!

Time TBA Liberty Theater 344 E. Main Street, Dayton

December 2010 Blue Mountain NEWS

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Thank you for reading

Blue Mountain News

Page 22 Blue Mountain NEWS December 2010

One More Thing . . .

Have Yourself a Digital Christmas By Ken Graham


ll my life I’ve had a bad attitude toward Christmas, in one way or another. As a child I was very greedy, and the only thing I remember about my early Christmases is staring obsessively at the packages under the tree with my name on them and holding and shaking them. (I started counting the hours until package-opening sometime around Halloween.) When I was about sixteen, I decided that Christmas was stupid and a waste of time. Of course in those days, except for girls and cars, I felt that way about just about everything – including school and my parents. For half-a-dozen years or so I mostly ignored Christmas. When I reached adulthood and started caring about Christmas again, I was like almost everyone else – it made me miserable. The stress of buying the right gifts and sending the right cards to the right people and getting the right tree and putting up the right decorations and playing the right music just about put me over the edge. But now, after all these years, I’ve figured out the secret to a happy and relaxed Christmas: the internet. Like the many other activities in life that it has made easier (dating, selling Pez dispensers, obtaining illegal copies of music) the internet has made getting through Christmas a breeze. The obvious benefit of the internet at Christmas is online shopping. With a credit card and a street address the UPS guy can find, you can do all your Christmas shopping without ever changing out of

your robe and slippers. But that’s old hat. Here are some of the other great ways the internet makes Christmas easier: Christmas cards As of this writing, I have 81 Facebook friends, even though I almost never go there and I rarely post anything. But here’s my plan: in another week or so, I’ll get on Facebook, and in about two minutes I’ll wish a happy and healthy Christmas to more people than I’ve ever sent cards to. Thanks Facebook! If you don’t have a Facebook page, you can always go to They have a feature there called “Cards that Mail Themselves”. I’m not kidding. Just pick out a card design (they have hundreds). Then upload your favorite photo of your family or your dog, or whomever you want on your card. Next, upload the addresses of all of your friends and then pour yourself a glass of wine. It’s that simple. Of course you’ll have to upload your credit card number too, but if you’ve made any progress at all on your Christmas shopping, you’ll be able to do that with your eyes shut. Trimming the tree How, you ask, can your computer possibly help you decorate your tree? Hah! At, Better Homes and Gardens magazine makes it simple. Among their features, like “Top Organizing Tips for Closets” and “How to Fold a Pocket Napkin”, you’ll find their wonderful “trim-a-tree” tool that lets you decorate a virtual tree on your computer screen, so you can visualize and plan your

actual tree. It’s really easy, but I discovered that I’m no better at decorating a virtual tree than I am a real one. I made a completely blue tree that’s really ugly, and I called it “Jim’s Blue Tree”. (They required me to tell them my name before I could decorate the tree, so I told them it was Jim.) It’s saved, so if you go there, and enter their “trim-a-tree” section, you can find it. Music Go to iTunes, and within about five minutes you can have Frank Sinatra crooning “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” into your earbuds. (If you don’t know what earbuds are, I’m afraid you’re doomed to an analog Christmas at the mall.) No matter your taste in Christmas music, you can download whatever you want from the internet. I did a search on “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas”, and here are some of the artists, besides Frank, who have recorded it: Bing Crosby, Ella Fitzgerald, Andy Williams, Linda Ronstadt, Engelbert Humperdinck, Jim Neighbors (a.k.a. Gomer Pyle), Travis Tritt, Clay Aiken, John Tesh (of course), the Charley Daniels Band and a group I’ve never heard of called Scambooty, on their album, “Have a Bootyful Christmas”. If you’re really brave, check out the version of that song recorded by the rock band Twisted Sister. It’s the first song on their album “A Twisted Christmas”. But I’m warning you right now that if you listen to that album all the way through, Christmas carols will never be the same again. Have a Merry Christmas! q

December 2010 Blue Mountain NEWS

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Page 24 Blue Mountain NEWS December 2010

Blue Mountain News - December 2010  

News, Arts and Recreation for Columbia and Northern Walla Walla Counties

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