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People are offering their observations of the world in the name of science
10 back on top
As a medical student, David Jaecks climbed Mount Adams. Then 50 years later, he did it again
12 fresh air
John Kruse had lost his passion for his work, so a change of career got him into the great outdoors
14 therapeutic riding
Time spent on horseback builds a stronger body and mind
16 ‘Dear pat haley’
East Wenatchee man collects signatures and memorabilia from past presidents and their descendents
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20 they built this city
Cary Ordway talks with the Founding Fathers of Pybus Market, who take stock of the first three-plus years and reveal their future plans
23 pretty as a calendar
Local photographers capture images for the 2017 conservation stewardship calendar
24 home made: without a mortgage
Lief Carlsen did the hard shovel work and scrounged materials to build his home without taking out a huge loan Art sketches n Glass artist Danni Everson, page 34 n Musician and repairman Lance Tigner, page 36 Columns & Departments 19 Pet Tales: Walking 2 black labs 29 Bonnie Orr: Appetizers that leave you with an appetite 30 June Darling: It’s good to be kind 32 The traveling doctor: Healthy snack foods? 34-39 Arts & Entertainment & a Dan McConnell cartoon 40 History: Call to build Rock Island Dam began in 1908 42 Alex Saliby: What wines to pair with holiday meals December 2016 | The Good Life
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Year 10, Number 12 December 2016 The Good Life is published by NCW Good Life, LLC, dba The Good Life 10 First Street, Suite 108 Wenatchee, WA 98801 PHONE: (509) 888-6527 EMAIL: email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org ONLINE: www.ncwgoodlife.com FACEBOOK: https://www. facebook.com/NCWGoodLife Editor/Publisher, Mike Cassidy Contributors, Brian Mitchell, Jaana Hatton, Tim Gallagher, Dave Jaecks, Pat Haley, Cary Ordway, Lief Carlsen, Donna Cassidy, Bonnie Orr, Alex Saliby, Jim Brown, June Darling, Dan McConnell, Susan Lagsdin and Rod Molzahn Advertising manager, Terry Smith Advertising sales, Donna Cassidy Bookkeeping and circulation, Donna Cassidy Proofing, Dianne Cornell Ad design, Clint Hollingsworth TO SUBSCRIBE: For $25, ($30 out of state address) you can have 12 issues of The Good Life mailed to you or a friend. Send payment to: The Good Life 10 First Street, Suite 108 Wenatchee, WA 98801 For circulation questions, email: email@example.com BUY A COPY of The Good Life at Safeway stores, Walgreens, Mike’s Meats at Pybus, Rhubarb Market, Martin’s Market Place (Cashmere) and A Book for All Seasons and Dan’s Food Market (both Leavenworth) ADVERTISING: For information about advertising in The Good Life, contact advertising at (509) 8886527, or firstname.lastname@example.org WRITE FOR THE GOOD LIFE: We welcome articles about people from Chelan and Douglas counties. Send your idea to Mike Cassidy at email@example.com
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Flying Crow By Brian Mitchell
I took this photo three years
ago while hiking with a friend. We were just off of Mad River Road and had stopped to take a break for lunch. Photography was still incredibly new to me and I was eager to get some cool photos of the mountains and river valleys. The weather had been variable all day and the on again, off again rain and snow made it hard to get any good views of the Entiat River Valley. After a while mother nature
relented just long enough for me to snap a shot of this bird soaring on gusts of wind over the scene I’d been trying to see all day. I really enjoy going back and working with old photos of mine and seeing how differently I do things now. It is a real joy to be able to re-experience these short moments in time from the incredible places photography has lead me. With nearly all of the photos I take I also see many ways in which I could edit or tweak those same photos. Sometimes the “final product” isn’t always so final. In this case it took that amount of time for me to see this photo differently or as
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something I would show to others. Brian Mitchell is a local photographer. His work can be found via his Facebook page located at facebook. com/thehinterlandphotography and also on the Chelan County Commons page located at chelancountycommons.com.
On the cover
Editor Mike Cassidy took this photo of Pat Haley, holding Memoir of the Life of John Quincy Adams signed by Benjamin Adams, the great-great-greatgrandson of President Adams. “Incidentally,” said Pat, “Adams is the only president to have served in Congress as a Representative after he was elected to the White House. He was defeated by President Jackson, and was the last president connected to the Founding Fathers. He was a strong abolitionist and the Adams were the only presidential family who never owned slaves. When he returned to the House as elder statesmen after his defeat by Jackson, he had a significant influence on a young congressman, who eventually ended slavery – Abraham Lincoln.”
Peter Lind was a man of the stars I had seen Peter Lind at com-
munity type meetings around town a few times, but the first occasion I really spent some time with him was when he invited me over to see his backyard observatory. I was thrilled — because, you see, when I was a kid, I dreamed of building my own telescope. I had checked books out of the library about how to grind the mirror on a six-inch reflecting telescope, I was as an avid reader of science-fiction of the day, and I can still remember walking to school one morning and looking at the moon, thinking: “I bet one day I will go to the moon!”
But you know how it is… those dreams got pushed aside by day-to-day realities. So, when Peter showed me his scopes and talked about the rings of Saturn and the moons of Jupiter, he had me enthralled. My wife and I went to one of the “star parties” he organized with other astronomers where through telescopes — some as big as small cars it seemed — we looked millions and even billions of miles into the great dark space. Before long, Peter had talked me into running a monthly column on what to look for in the
night skies. My wife marked sighting nights on the calendar and my mom said it was the first thing she turned to Peter Lind: Star man was the cover shot in the magafor December 2012. zine. Along with reporting happenings in the heavens, Peter shared stories about astronomers, constellations and the history of star watching. All fun to read. Earlier this year, Peter came by the office to say he had a surprising medical diagnosis and would have to take a break from writing his column as he tried a new treatment. He returned to write one column, and then late in October as we went to press, he passed away. Peter will be missed by his friends and family, but he will also be missed by many who only knew him through his writ-
ing, people who were inspired and awed by the wonders of the night sky that Peter so joyfully described. Peter shared the lesson well that there is so much to see by looking up. Peter was one of several columnists we feature each month in The Good Life. Many of these writers have been with us from very early one… both Dr. Jim Brown and June Darling pointed out this summer they have each written more than 100 articles for The Good Life. I believe that is true for both food columnist Bonnie Orr and history writer Rod Molzahn. Wine lover Alex Saliby is not far behind. I am so grateful we are able to share the talents and knowledge of these fine people with our readers. They broaden our magazine and make The Good Life better. Share your talents so that others may enjoy The Good Life. — Mike
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fun stuff a full LISTING of what to do begins ON PAGE 35 ning singers and musicians with all your Christmas favorites, spiced wine and hot chocolate, and Christmas fun for the whole family. Snowy Owl Theater. Info: icicle.org. Friday and Saturday, 12/9, 7:30 p.m. 12/10, 2:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
This is indeed the merry season all around T
he Christmas season is overflowing with packages of fun around the area. From old time radio holiday shows reenacted on stage, to visiting the little town of Bethlehem — complete with camel — to high school plays, $3 holiday movies and plenty of opportunities to visit and take selfies with
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from our family to yours.
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Christmas with the Columbia Chorale — Classics, famil-
Santa. Here are just a few items gleamed from this month’s calendar: Journey to Bethlehem —
Experience the town of Bethlehem as it was the night the Christ child was born. The Journey includes over 150 actors in full costume and a living nativity with sheep, goats, donkeys, chickens and a camel. Dress for the outdoor weather. Seventh-day Adventist Church, 5th and Western. Reserve tour: j2bwenatchee.org. Cost: free. Thursday through Sunday, Dec. 1-4, 5:30 – 9:30 p.m. White Christmas the Musical — Wenatchee High School
Choral departments live per-
formance. WHS auditorium. Cost: $16 adults, $13, seniors, $10 students and Veterans. Ticket: PAC or numericapac.org. Thursdays through Saturdays, 12/1, 2, 3, 15, 16, 17, 7:30 p.m. Saturday matinees, 2 p.m. Re-Grand Opening — The Wenatchee Racquet and Athletic Club turns 55 years old and still growing up and out. Come see the new fitness center. Fitness and tennis classes, ribbon cutting, tennis mixer and racquetball tournament. Refreshments, presentation, drawings, raffle and more. WRAC. Cost: free. Saturday, 12/3, 9 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. Family Christmas Show —
An old-time radio show with a tender Christmas story, stun-
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Holiday movie on the big screen: Polar Express — Nu-
merica Performing Arts Center. Cost: $3. Info: numericapac.org. Sunday, 12/18, 6:30 p.m.
Lance Tigner — Live performance on the railcar. (See a story about Lance and his love of music on page 36.) Pybus Public Market. Info: pybuspublicmarket.org. Friday, 12/23, 6 – 8 p.m. Old Time Radio Show: A Christmas Story — Local per-
formers bring this story to the stage in 1940s style radio hour as it is broadcast live. Numerica Performing Arts Center. Cost: $9- $19. Info: numerica.org. Thursday, 12/22, 7:30 p.m.
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iar tunes and beloved carols of the season will be featured along with the brass quartet, the Leavenworth Christmas Brass. Numerica Performing Arts Center. Info: numericapac.org. Friday, 12/16, 7:30 p.m.
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citizen scientists ‘The power of collaboration’ as ordinary people lend to understanding of the world
By Jaana Hatton
f you are curious about the birds and the bees, and the flowers and the trees, you could ask Susan Ballinger. She knows a thing or two about such matters, and loves to share her life-long knowledge of nature. With one foot on the hills and the other in the community, she welcomes new paths to connect the two. One such trail is that of a Citizen Scientist. You don’t need a degree to be one — enthusiasm is the only requirement. As for Susan, she has plenty of inspiration and she sprinkles it around like poppy seeds. Anyone who has taken her Wenatchee Naturalist class at the Wenatchee Valley College is likely to agree. Susan developed and started the Naturalist program at the college in 2012 in order to grow new Citizen Scientists in our area. The Chelan-Douglas Land Trust began sponsoring the course this year. So far 150 Citizen Scientists have been sprouted and 17 have taken root as board members in various conservation organizations in the Central Northwest region. Citizen Science started officially at Oxford University in Great Britain in 2007 with the launch of their Galaxy Zoo program. It has evolved in a co-operative effort of nine sepa-
Susan Ballinger makes notes during an Upper Basin Birders survey at Fish Lake. Volunteers take turns recording all bird species observed by the group, and later, entering the data into Cornell Lab of Ornithology’s online eBird citizen science database. Photo by Tim Gallagher
rate establishments, called Citizen Science Alliance (CSA), which develops and maintains programs for scientific purposes. Unofficially, we can go as far back as Charles Darwin who recruited 2,000 lay people to contribute information to his research on evolution. These days, with the benefit of the internet, scientists can easily access the input of 2 million people, or more. CSA offers a project for almost anything
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in the natural world: the endangered rusty patched bumble bee, the phenology of your backyard maple tree, or the coastal rockfish tagging project, to name a few. CSA has created an internet-based system with which observations can be entered and accessed. It is a field of information where nature and technology happily mingle. “This shows the power of collaboration,”
}}} Continued on next page
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Hedges, on designated eBird routes on Horse Lake Reserve and Mountain Home Preserve. The posts have metal plaques }}} Continued from to signify them as eBird previous page locations. Now the routes Susan emphasized. “We are just waiting for Citican learn from each zen Science participants. other.” With a Master’s in EduMany of you may cation and Biology, Susan unknowingly already be likes to get kids closer to Citizen Scientists. For nature. She currently led example, if you like to a group of eighth-graders keep track of the crows in a bitterbrush planting occupying your backyard project on the Balsamroot Douglas fir or record the Trail. daily temperatures at “They were so enthusinoon, the information astic,” Susan beamed. “It might be useful to scienwas hard work digging, tists around the world. It Volunteer Upper Basin Birders, from left to right: Mary Gallagher, Susan Ballinger, Heather planting and protecting is especially important to Murphy (using scope), Jane Zanol, and seated, John Zanol. During the project’s 17 years, 204 all those little starts, but have human eyes, rather they were a good crew.” different species of birds have been recorded at 21 separate bird survey stations in the upper than automated gadgets, She has also organized Wenatchee River watershed, including Fish Lake. Some 1,800 individual checklists have been making the observations; entered in the Cornell Lab of Ornithology’s eBird database, allowing scientists world-wide to a group of high school use the data. Photo by Tim Gallagher people instinctively spot students to monitor the the odd thing out, the plant density in the 2015 anomaly that could indicate an burn area on the Balsamroot Fish Lake has begun to steadily alarming change in a pattern. Trail. Susan continues to lead host more bald eagles. There are “A lot of this work can be done currently 25. That’s exciting,” and encourage, as she did in To find out how to join Citifrom home,” Susan explained. her childhood when taking her she enthused. zen Science projects, below are “Most anyone can participate, siblings on adventures along the eBird is a record keeping some websites to go to: (regardless of physical condition program developed by Cornell Montana hillsides. www.citizensciencealliance. or age). There is even a Citizen “Citizen Science can help University and the National org Science program for observing people feel empowered,” she Audubon Society. One of their www.cdlandtrust.org the backyard sunflower polexplained. “With the use of a Citizen Science projects is the www.wenatcheenaturalist. linators. Isn’t that exciting,” she computer, a person can particiwidely known Christmas Bird com quipped with her typical happy pate in real research.” Count. www.wenatcheeriverinstienergy It is encouraging to know that To help bird enthusiasts in tute.org Susan’s favorite Citizen Sciwithout a degree and student the greater Wenatchee become www.birds.cornell.edu ence project is eBird. She goes loans to prove for it, without familiar with eBird and bird on regular bird watching exeven having to leave the home, watching possibilities, Susan cursions, on specific locations Not only does Susan lead one can still observe nature teams up with Wendy Connally, at consistent times, and keeps educational bird outings, as she and assist in compiling relevant the Citizen Science Coordinator close records of her observascouts attentively with binocudata. with the Washington Departtions. lars in hand, but she will also “I have always enjoyed birds,” ment of Fish and Wildlife. They Her Wednesday morning point out the plants and geologi- Susan shares. “And I am happy offer an annual workshop to walks in the Walla Walla Park cal features along the way. about the nature around us, introduce the basics. and the Horan Nature Preserve Every now and again, when every day.” The local program as a whole often have several participants. a bird flies by swiftly, Susan If you can’t find Susan in the is sponsored by the Wenatchee Susan also travels farther: will wonder: “Who’s that?” And classroom talking about the River Institute and the Chelanonce a month she joins the wasting no time, she refers to birds and the bees, she may be Douglas Land Trust, which SuUpper Basin Birders, who gave her dog-eared bird book to solve roaming the hills in her ongosan joined 17 years ago and now her the spark 17 years ago, the mystery. Birds, you see, are ing effort to preserve the natural serves as a Fellow. on the White River and Lake fickle: they change their plumenvironment around us. “I like teamwork,” Susan Wenatchee. They also travel on age according to age and seaOr, when the sun sets, you pointed out. She is always happy a pontoon boat on Fish Lake. sons. And that will be recorded may find her playing the flute to have volunteers join her on “It takes years to get a good on the eBird charts. with the Wenatchee Valley Symbird walks and other nature sense of what is going on sciOne of her current birding phony Orchestra. Ladies also outings. “We have observed 83 entifically; you have to develop projects was setting up observalike to change their plumage on species of birds over five years in a database. I have noticed how tion markers, together with Neal occasion. the Horan lagoon area.”
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Mature Bald Eagle: This mature Bald Eagle flew over the pontoon boat at Fish Lake in May of 2013 with the snow covered mountains as a wonderful backdrop. This photo was previously published in the December 2013 issue of The Good Life in the “Picture the Wenatchee” photo contest.
What the Upper Basin Birders see Tim Gallagher and his wife, Mary, began participating in the monthly Upper
Basin Birders project in the Summer of 2012. “It is often the unexpected bird that brings excitement and having a photograph to corroborate our data can be very important,” he said. Tim has taken a keen interest in birds, from his childhood summers in Yosemite National Park, to raising parakeets, canaries, finches and cockatiels, to teaching about them as a Ranger with the National Park Service and California State Parks, and to overseeing the design and construction of the first Audubon designated golf course in California. He has participated in the Leavenworth Bird Fests as a guide for the last few years. These photographs by Tim were taken on Upper Basin Birders surveys, which include Fish Lake, Lake Wenatchee, the Wenatchee and White River and Nason Creek.
Male Western Tanager: This colorful male Western Tanager, a neotropical migrant, was perched in a Ponderosa pine close to the water at Lake Wenatchee State Park.
Male Rufous Hummingbird: This male Rufous hummingbird is a neotropical migrant. He was enjoying the sugar water from the feeders at The Cove Resort at Fish Lake, included in the monthly monitoring. Capturing a bird in flight is always a challenge, especially one that moves so quickly.
Osprey: The Osprey is a common visitor to this area during late spring and summer months. Surprisingly, this Osprey photographed in November at Fish Lake, had yet to migrate south. December 2016 | The Good Life
50 year anniversary climb of Mount Adams by Dave Jaecks
Fifty years is but a blink in
the life of a mountain, even a volcano, but it is a big chunk in the earthly span of a mortal man. Fifty years ago — in August of 1966 — I was recently arrived in Washington and a total neophyte in mountaineering. So when fellow UW medical resident Karl Hammermeister suggested that I join him and his brother Dale in a climb up Mount Adams, I jumped at the chance. My first summit: Exciting! All went well on that trip and also, for the most part, on all the many subsequent climbs on rock, snow or ice in the ensuing half century. As the golden anniversary approached, my granddaughter Anna, was keen to accompany me and ascend her first volcano. So encouraged by a forecast of perfect weather we set out on This story also appears on Wenatcheeoutdoors.org — the site covers such topics as hiking, biking, climbing, paddling, trail running and skiing in the region.
The Perseid meteor shower provided streaks of light every 30 seconds or so, although I was hunched over looking more at my crampon straps than at the spectacle in the heavens. Aug. 8, driving to the parking lot and hiking up a few hundred feet to camp near the junction of the Round the Mountain Trail amid the remnants of an old burn and late summer flowers. The trail up from there was much better defined than I remembered from 1966 and ambitious climbers had built numerous rock wall wind breaks at flat spots along the way. True to the forecast, we experienced clear skies and only light zephyrs even at the summit. In true alpine style, we got up
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Dave Jaecks and his granddaughter, Anna, at the summit of Mount Adams.
in the dark of night and started upward well before dawn. The Perseid meteor shower provided streaks of light every 30 seconds or so, although I was hunched over looking more at my crampon straps than at the spectacle in the heavens. Dawn slowly illuminated the slope as we struggled up the crescendo slope to the false summit (at least one of us was struggling). The traverse to the true summit and the final ascent went smoothly if slowly and we arrived at the snow-filled remnants of the ruined lookout cabin that was unwisely located on Adams summit decades ago. Of course I shamelessly announced to all fellow summiteers that I was on my 50th anniversary climb and that I was accompanied by my grand-
daughter, who was soon to enroll as a freshman at Dartmouth College. (These old codgers can be such bores.) The descent featured fun glissades and the trails down featured lots of small rounded rocks that annoyingly rolled out from under my feet multiple times. After 13 hours total, we were back at the car and glad for it. In short, it was the geographic and emotional highlight of my summer. Dave Jaecks was born and raised in the flat land of Wisconsin, moved to Washington in 1966 to complete his medical training and immediately developed an enduring enchantment with mountains and wilderness. Anna was born in Seattle and from an early age has had a love for outdoor adventures (many with her grandfather) and is currently a first year student at Dartmouth College.
Did you climb a mountain, check off an item on your bucket list, cross an ocean, hold a new life in your hand, discover a new talent, set out on a new path, get a surprising check in the mail, make a difference in someone’s life, begin a new chapter in your life...
Write us an email -- 200 to 500 words or so -- telling us of your best day in 2016. Send along some digital photos, too. We’ll choose one of the writers for a $100 gift certificate to any one of The Good Life’s advertisers from 2016
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December 2016 | The Good Life
Fresh Air When John Kruse realized the passion just wasn’t there anymore for his job, he traded his badge for a microphone
By Jaana Hatton
o you sometimes feel, in the midst of your everyday routines, that there is actually something else you should be doing in life? Maybe there’s a little voice in the back of your mind whispering of other things that are waiting for you? For John Kruse, such a readjustment took place in 2014. “It was one of those light switch moments,” John recalled. “I suddenly realized the passion for my work wasn’t there anymore. One day I was doing my duty as always, and the next one, I no longer found it fulfilling.” He had had a long, respectable career with the Wenatchee Police Department; 22 years to be exact. John had sorted out some tricky cases, sometimes persistently investigating for years to solve them. Yet, for some reason he felt dissatisfied with the daily run of things. John went to Police Chief Tom Robbins to talk about his dilemma. The chief understood and said to John: “We all have a shelf-life.” So there it was. John had arrived at his expiration date in law enforcement, and he was relieved to have another person acknowledge it was all right. One thing that had never gone stale in John’s mind was his desire to write. He knew it as early on as high school and enrolled at Eastern Washington University after graduation to study the craft. Unfortunately, EWU closed the program and
John had to take Applied Psychology, instead. Since his dream of becoming the next Hemingway didn’t seem likely just yet, John decided to join the Army and stayed on for six years, John Kruse, right, interviews Chris Bosignore of Ducks Unlimited for the Northwestern Outseeing a bit of the United States and doors Radio show. The nationwide recession hit Europe. in 2008 and with that, the show As he got promoted, the nalost many of its sponsors. ture of his tasks changed, and Dan Conway, the new station there were desk jobs in the offerowner, wanted John’s program ing. John had no interest in such to continue and suggested he a working environment, and he look for new sponsors as a synrequested to be discharged. dicated host. In 1992 he started working for By now the radio show was the Wenatchee Police Departairing under the name The Great ment, staying away from desks Outdoors as a live, one-hour as much as he could. broadcast with a paycheck of “I like Wenatchee,” John said $100 per week. John had the about his law enforcement years. comfort of his pension, and “It’s small enough that you can money was the not the pressing know the city, and big enough to incentive for him to host the keep you busy.” departure,” John explained. “I outdoor-themed show; passion The writing spirit tapped on wasn’t sure about it at all, having was. his shoulder again in 2000. John no experience in broadcasting. As much as John enjoyed bewent on a fishing trip to the They promised to give me the ing a radio host, there was one British Columbia with his dad, thing he struggled with: and was taken over by the magic necessary training, so I agreed.” The necessary training turned “Looking for sponsors was of the experience. He wanted to out to be a 30-minute tutorial tough for me in the sense that share it with a wider audience and a quick familiarization with I had to assign monetary value and put his thoughts on paper. the knobs and controls involved. to myself,” John said. “The To his delight, The American Wenatchee Valley Chamber of Sportsman published his article. After that, the show was in John’s rookie hands. Commerce was one of my first John continued working with He was terrified. Luckily, the sponsors, with $960 per year the police force full-time, pubprogram was pre-recorded, so he and a set of truck tires for me in lishing the odd article here and could tape over his mistakes. exchange for a year of advertisthere. “I was horrible,” John said with ing. It was fine with me — those In 2007 he received another a chuckle. “I didn’t know how to were some nice tires!” nudge onto a new path: a gig at speak correctly on the radio, so In 2011 an explosion took the local radio station. my speech was super slow, like place, the good kind, through “AM 560 KPQ had an outdoorthe use of the internet. The themed show and they needed a William Shatner on Star Trek. It got better over time.” show jumped from 13 stations to new host after Eric Granstrom’s
“I was horrible (at first.) I didn’t know how to speak correctly on the radio, so my speech was super slow, like William Shatner on Star Trek.”
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“It was so enjoyable my excitement was clearly conveyed in my voice. That really was the best one ever!” 29, and is now being broadcast by 60 stations in five states. The show mostly airs on the West Coast, except for Tennessee in the East. It took John some five years to become comfortable with all aspects of running a radio show. These days he airs the Northwestern Outdoors Radio show — AM 560 KPQ — in the utter comfort of his basement, which has been transformed into a professional studio. It is on Fridays at 6 p.m., Saturdays at 4 p.m. and Sundays at 7 a.m. He also has a new show, America Outdoors, aired on Fox Sports AM 1380 KRKO Saturday mornings 8-9. Mostly John works on his own, with his son occasionally taking on some of the technical tasks involved. John looks for experts to visit on his shows. “I don’t know everything about the outdoors,” John said, “but I am enthusiastic. I find the people who have the knowledge and I ask the questions a listener might ask.” Each show features five different voices and the topics are varied. It’s not all about hunting and fishing, but also about rafting, hiking, biking, conservation and women’s interests. Personal connections are the way John makes it work. Finding those experts, contacting new resorts — it’s all about networking. He goes to sportsman shows and makes sure to mingle. Exposure and reaching out keeps the show going. “When people appear on the show, there is a nice little payoff,” John explained. “When the broadcast is over, bookings start
rolling in. And I often get free family vacations at resorts when I approach them with an offer to advertise.” With many years in broadcasting, there have been good shows and some bad ones, too. “My worst fumble must be the recording I did with Doug Allen at the Yakima Valley Marina. There we were, excitedly fishing Coho salmon — and I named the river totally wrong. Thank goodness it wasn’t live!” John recalled with a grimace. He feels that when the interview is going well the enthusiasm carries through over the airwaves. Having listened back to some of his old recordings, John had learned to distinguish the difference between a captivating show and a perfunctory one. John is particularly pleased with his first place winner with the Outdoor Writers Association. It was about an experience he had with his son. “We were on bicycles, doing the 29-mile Root of the Hiawatha trail between Idaho and Montana. It was so enjoyable my excitement was clearly conveyed in my voice. That really was the best one ever!” John continues to enjoy his mission on the radio to inform people and to educate about conservation. He has also kept up with his writing, publishing his book Great Places in Washington in 2009 through Wilderness Adventures Press. It is obvious John is not looking for his calling anymore; he is living it. And with a book written and published, it really doesn’t matter that he missed out on four years of English Literature classes. “I feel I’m the luckiest guy in the world,” he said with a big smile. Jaana Hatton is a freelance writer and an active outdoors person and enjoys many opportunities the natural environment in the greater Wenatchee area offers.
December 2016 | The Good Life
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Jennifer pats her therapy horse, Frid, as they pause by the cooling fan.
Time spent on horseback builds a stronger body and mind By Jaana Hatton
Jennifer Jensen of Wenatchee
has spent all of her 31 years of life watching the world from the height of two feet, seated in her wheelchair. However, starting a year ago, she suddenly had a whole new perspective of her surroundings, at the height of five feet, from the saddle of a Norwegian Fjord horse. Jennifer began therapeutic riding lesson at the Alatheia Riding Center in Wenatchee after a co-worker’s enthusiastic prompting. Initially, it seemed an intimidating idea to Jennifer, but soon curiosity began to take
over. In September 2015, after a month’s deliberation, Jennifer said to herself: “I only live once, so what the heck!” “I had my first lesson with Frid. I still ride her during my weekly sessions. It was nervewrecking and I needed total support to stay up there. That means I had a person leading the horse and a side walker on both sides,” Jennifer recalls her initial experience. Jennifer was born with spina bifida, which left her paralyzed from the waist down. It makes daily life a small challenge, having to get around in a wheelchair. It hasn’t stopped her from attending regular school all through her education and from having a job. She has worked at a local resourcing company for two-and-a-half years. “I have been riding for a year
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now, and it has made a big difference in my life,” Jennifer said with a smile. “It used to be just about work — now there is more purpose and challenge for me. I feel much more confident and happy.” According to Alatheia owner, Nancy Grette, Jennifer is one of their most enthusiastic and determined riders. “Jen really has to work hard when she rides. Imagine not having any use of your legs — it isn’t easy to balance yourself,” Nancy pointed out. “She generally rides the same horse and has the same support people each time. It’s good to have consistence.” Jennifer has not been going to any other type of therapy. While riding a horse is challenging, it is also more fun than traditional physical therapies. Equestrian conditioning is a mental connec-
tion that doesn’t happen with machines. “Riding has given me more physical endurance and strength. My upper body is much firmer now and my balance has improved,” Jennifer beamed. “I no longer need side walkers, I can ride independently.” She did that for the first time on Independence Day, July 4th. Physical improvement is one bright side of the therapy. The other one is the confidence that comes with it. “Frid is such a stubborn girl. She is a steady ride, but has a mind of her own. It challenges my determination,” Jennifer explained. “They have this giant fan that blows mist at the center in the summer, to cool us down. Frid loves to stop right in front of it to enjoy herself. It takes some nudging to get her moving again.”
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“It used to be (my life was) just about work — now there is more purpose and challenge for me. I feel much more confident and happy.” Stubborn she may be, but Frid also pays attention to Jennifer. On a recent Thursday, as Jennifer was slightly off balance and leaning to one side, Frid stopped without instruction. She gently lifted the hind leg on the side “I only fail if I quit,” said Jennifer Jensen. that Jennifer was slipping cially intuitive: at the beginning towards, as if to support the of a session, the mare gently rider. Once the rider’s position was corrected, Frid was happy to places her head on the rider’s lap, as if evaluating her mission. start walking again. Of all the things that Jennifer Jennifer credits her instructor, has gained from therapeutic Willow Goodman, and all the riding, the mental strength may other Alatheia staff and volunbe the most valuable. She has teers for her success. had to overcome fears related “They are always supportive to being on horseback, and asthere. It’s like being with famsert herself in order to have the ily.” equine’s co-operation. During the lessons, the riders Jennifer is now planning on learn basic riding skills and also trying yet another new pursuit: have some fun with obstacles, such as bridges, poles and going riding a handicapped bicycle. “I only fail if I quit,” she said. through the “car wash” (foam tubes hanging from a supportive “I have learned that it’s good to do things outside of my comfort metal structure). It is fun for zone.” both horse and rider, as well as The effect of therapeutic ridan exercise in balance and attening is summed up in Jennifer’s tion. comment she gave in a speech Alatheia Riding Center has all during a May open house at the necessary equipment and Alatheia: “I’ve never felt this ina wide selection of saddles to dependent before, until getting transfer clients onto the horses’ up on a horse.” backs. Jennifer started out with Nor did she have the coura special pad-type of a saddle for age to do much public speaking the handicapped, but now rides until then, either. on a normal Western one. The Norwegian Fjords, the Jaana Hatton is a native of Finland, only breed used at Alatheia, are a globetrotter of 25 years and finally excellent for therapy riding due a resident of Wenatchee. She is an to their calm disposition and enthusiastic outdoor person, enjoysturdy structure. ing biking and hiking, and is a horse rescue volunteer as well as a rider. Jennifer’s ride, Frid, is espeDecember 2016 | The Good Life
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Letters from presidents ... and sports stars, moon walkers, military figures and others bring history alive and give insights into the wisdom and non-public sides of famous people By Pat Haley
When President Reagan
announced that Special Forces from the 82nd Army Airborne in 1983 had been activated to rescue American medical students from a potential hostage seize in Grenada, I anxiously wondered if my brother serving in that unit was a part of the combat team. Soon after this event I sent a handwritten letter to the President, thanking him for his courageous leadership and for averting another hostage crisis like the one in Iran just three years earlier. What followed turned into a lifelong hobby that eventually inspired me to pursue public office. In response to my letter, I received a large envelope that contained an unfolded memo from Reagan on White House letterhead. I was thrilled to have letter from the President of the United States thanking me for my comments, and asking me to remember in my prayers other servicemen around the world that are ready to protect our freedom. Then it occurred to me that there are other presidents still alive — what if I could get a letter from every president in
the White House during my lifetime? Letters were sent to Jimmy Carter, Gerald Ford, and Richard Nixon — thanking them for their service to our country during their administration and for all the good they did while in office that nobody knew about. I first received a letter from Jimmy Carter in an envelope with no postage — only his name embossed in the location of the stamp. (Past presidents don’t pay postage — a tradition dating back to George Washington). It was printed on Jimmy Carter stationary and contained a few sentences thanking me for my comments. Next was a letter from Gerald Ford. Again, it had his name embossed in the corner where the stamp belongs.
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Ford’s message on his letterhead was a little longer, and he expressed his pride in leading our country during a troublesome period. Nixon probably didn’t get a lot of thank you letters, so his response was enclosed in a large padded envelope. The package contained a thank you message on Nixon letterhead, a picture postcard of the Nixon family at a birthday celebration and a book titled, No More Vietnams, along with his business card and his autograph on the book. I was thrilled — I had an autographed book from the former president of the United States! Then I thought, “What if I could get autographed
memoirs of every U.S. president or his family member?” Thirty-two years later, over 160 autographed books, and letters on White House stationary from Reagan to Obama — I’m continuing my quest to obtain an autographed copy of a memoir or biography from every president of the United States or a family member. Working my way back from George W. Bush, I currently have autographs from the president or family member back to our 14th president — Franklin Pierce. In addition, I have autographs from relatives of George Washington, John Adams, and John Quincy Adams. The autograph memoirs include other national and international leaders such as Margaret Thatcher, Nelson Mandela, Ariel Sharon, Pope John Paul II, and numerous American founding fathers, presidential wives and family members, military leaders, sport stars and coaches, politicians, entertainers, religious leaders, historical achievers, authors, and journalists. Basically, I try to get a memoir or autobiography signed by the author or family member. For the presidents after Nixon, I contacted a family member for a signature such as Ladybird Johnson, Caroline Kennedy and
John Eisenhower. Then it was the grandson for Harry Truman, then the great grandson for FDR, then the great-great grandson for Theodore Roosevelt, and after that the “greats” just kept getting longer. For example I have the great-great-great-great granddaughter of John Adams — Abigail Adams Manning of Harpswell Maine. Though my goal is to get a signature on a memoir of every presidential family member, some of my most prized autographs came from other historical figures, which include Buzz Aldrin (second man to walk on the moon), Jimmy Stewart, Eddie Rickenbacker, and Robert W. Prince — a one-time Wenatchee resident who planned the rescue of 500 WWII prisoners in the Philippines, a story made popular in the movie The Great Raid. Nearly every book has its own story. On one occasion I received a phone call from WWII General Omar Bradley’s grandson who wanted to share with me stories about his grandfather that were from his own experience. On another occasion, President Woodrow Wilson’s grandson, Robert W. Sayer, who was 92 years old, invited me to come and visit him at his home on Martha’s Vineyard. I’ve never intended to gather books for their value, but Ronald Reagan’s signature on his autobiography is worth $4,000 — I have two books with his signature. Naturally, the books are more valuable if I can obtain a signature from a living author and after he/she passes away the memoirs become priceless. I never intend to sell them, however, which is why I always ask an author to include my name with his/her inscription and the date. Occasionally, they will include of note of appreciation with the book, but I’ve also received some unique mementos with the re-
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turned volume. Frederick Douglass IV included a bottle of his family’s BBQ sauce, a WWII Marine who fought in the Battle of Okinawa included a picture of him holding up a captured Japanese flag from 1945, and a cousin of Abraham Lincoln included an article in the local paper on his family connection to the 16th president. Part of the fun of this hobby is tracking down a shipping ad-
dress and receiving the return package in the mail. It’s like giving yourself a Christmas present. After I’ve read an autobiography I take notes from the book that I found inspiring or impressive. I then write a letter to the author sharing with him/her some of my favorite sections of the book. I insert the letter in the book and place it unsealed in a padded envelope with my return address and postage.
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LETTERS FROM PRESIDENTS }}} Continued from previous page I place the padded envelope in a larger manila envelope, seal it up with the author’s name on the front and drop it in the mail. Upon receipt of the book, the author opens up the outside envelope, pulls the book out of the padded envelope, reads the letter, signs the book, seals it in the padded envelope, and returns it with the provided postage. It may take a couple of minutes to receive and autograph the book, and it is returned to me in about a month. In some cases, as with Henry Kissinger and Bill Cosby, I waited a whole year to have the books returned. Only two books have never been returned and both of these were from sport stars: Larry Bird and Kareem Abdul Jabar. I either got the address wrong or they ignored my request. (I guarantee return mail if the address is wrong, so I’m inclined to believe
the second reason.) Sport stars are reluctant to provide a signature, since some of their autographs have been sold on eBay, which is why I’m waiting until Michael Jordan is an old man before I ask for his signature on his memoir — I didn’t have any trouble receiving an autograph on a memoir from golf legend Arnold Palmer. My latest autographed book is from the son of James B. Donovan, who was played by Tom Hanks in the movie, Bridge of Spies. The memoir describing the prisoner exchange between a Russian spy and captured U-2 aviator Gary Powers was titled, Strangers on a Bridge. Currently, I’m reading the Autobiography of Benjamin Rush, signer of the Declaration of Independence and close friends with John Adams and Thomas Jefferson. His great-great-great grandson lives in Pennsylvania. Now, you may be saying,
“That’s all very good, but what’s the point?” What I want to inspire for every reader is found in Proverbs 13:20, “He who walks with wise men will be wise.” Writing is all about thinking, and if you want to get to know somebody, read his/her writings. In addition to the pleasure of receiving a response from an author, an additional benefit of this hobby is the sense of actually meeting him/her through their writings. One of my favorite books is by Richard Nixon titled: Leaders — Profiles & Reminiscences of Men Who have Shaped the Modern World. (Autographed by his daughter – Trisha Nixon Cox). In the book Nixon describes his impressions of all the leaders he met during his lifetime including Churchill, de Gaulle, General MacArthur, Eisenhower, and Khrushchev. His premise in writing the book is for us to learn about leaders from different perspec-
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Writing is all about thinking, and if you want to get to know somebody, read his/her writings. tives. In other words, the person we perceive in public may not be the same as the person in private. Nixon believed there are multiple sides to a leader such as husband, father, employer, brother, and friend; and viewing a person from different perspectives gives us a better understanding of who the leader really is. (Maybe that’s why we have four gospels.) Not only was the book a fascinating read, but it also taught me a lesson on the mistake of judging a leader from only one perspective. This is the primary reason why I confine my reading largely to biographies/autobiographies — so I can gather as much wisdom from them as possible as if I actually met the author. This collection of autographs has inspired me to pursue political office and run for Douglas County Commissioner. When you read about the sacrifices and selfless service that were done for the good of others, it makes me wonder what responsibility I have for serving my country. I think many people dream when they are younger about becoming president, governor or a person of public influence. But then “life happens” and you have a career and the interest fades or it’s unrealistic. When Ken Stanton decided to retire after this term, I saw this as my opportunity to finally step forward and contribute to the leadership of public office. Maybe someday I’ll be able to write my own memoir. “With appreciation for your thoughtfulness and with every good wish.” (How Tricia Nixon signed her father’s book.)
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Lucy, 3 is a Goldendoodle, who walks with Debby Phil-
lips of Wenatchee. Debby says what she likes most about Lucy is that she doesn’t shed and she is a good dog and really good around kids. Debby says she gets out most days but is not looking forward to the snow since snow seems to cling to Lucy’s fur.
enny Gould, Wenatchee, walks her two black labs on Riverfront Park every lunch hour. Kona, 6 on the left and Fiona, 3 on the right are brother and sister. “We lost our lab and Kona became our heartbreak fixer,” said Penny. “They are the best companions on earth and are very loving and sweet and abundantly friendly.”
Dr. Ed Womack, DVM Cascade Veterinary Clinic 509-663-0793.
December 2016 | The Good Life
â€˜Go-to place in Wenatcheeâ€™ is a huge success story by CARY ORDWAY
y most accounts, Wenatchee's Pybus Market would seem to be a resounding success since opening its doors to the public three and a half years ago. But there's one bottom-line measurement that is especially telling:
All 20 merchants have renewed their original three-year lease agreements. In other words, nobody's bailing on a project that was somewhat audacious back when city and port officials first began working with local business owners Mark and JoAnn Walker to bring this major attraction to the Wenatchee waterfront. "It's exceeded our expectations," said Mike Walker. "It's become the go-to place in Wenatchee. We couldn't have asked for any more."
It's not just the high-quality restaurants and unique shops that make Pybus Market irresistible to tourists and locals alike. It's become a popular event center and gathering place for groups of all kinds. It's a cultural center with its Friday night concerts bringing in a variety of local musical artists. And, with its trendy industrial feel -- it was, after all, a steel warehouse in its first life -- the market is just plain cool to visit. Another good measurement of success is Tripadvisor.com, which posts visitor reviews. Currently 85 percent of the reviews are excellent or good.
Friday niight concerts are a big hit at Pybus and this concert by Waterdog is no exception
The market had several Founding Fathers. The Walkers were big proponents and invested around $5 million to refurbish that old warehouse into the spectacular facility it is today. The Port of Chelan County also put in $5 million and actually owns the land. And then there were visionaries like Wenatchee Economic Development Director Steve King and Pybus Executive Director Steve Robinson who steered the project in ways that helped create a true tourist attraction and community center similar to successful markets in other parts of the country. Steve King, in fact, told the Wenatchee Business Journal that Pybus Market is "the perfect public/private partnership model
Cary Ordway is president of GMC, which produces They Built This City for Good Life Magazine. This quarterly section tells the untold story of how Wenatchee-area businesses and agencies were created and have improved our quality of life. It is made possible by sponsors appearing in the articles in this section. Email
Cary at firstname.lastname@example.org.
WINTER 2016 | THE GOOD LIFE | They Built This City |
where no one entity on its own could do something like that." Pybus Market was a big project to put together and there was always the possibility that not enough tourists and residents would actually come to the market and spend money. "But I never had any doubts," says Walker. "I knew if we built something for our merchants to rent, the people would come." Robinson said there was quite a learning curve when the market opened. A former general manager for the Wenatchee World, Robinson was brought out of retirement to help figure out how it would all come together. He remembers there were three problems that came up right away: not enough parking, not enough garbage cans, and not enough toilet paper. Those problems remedied, Robinson and his staff spent a lot of time brainstorming that first year about what events
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Pybus... they could hold at the market, and how they could recruit local organizations to use the Pybus event center. But that all changed in the second year as local groups began calling on their own, booking the market for a variety of meetings and special events. The market operates on a $350,000 annual budget, earning revenue from merchants renting their spaces, the events room and sponsors. While the individual businesses are forprofit companies, the market is a non-profit enterprise with a 16-member board set up to oversee the operations. Currently Pybus Market pays for itself, but it isn't earning enough money to set aside a reserve fund for long-term maintenance and improvements. As Robinson points out, the current fiscal model is not sustainable and he's working on ways to produce enough income to create capital reserves. The market is overseen by
• Fast and reliable high-speed Internet the Pybus Market Charitable Foundation, which encourages Robinson to run a fairly lean operation with just 4.2 full-time equivalent employees. Interestingly, the Events Center at Pybus wasn't in the original plan, according to Mike Walker. But it's proven quite popular with outside groups and, while the market earns revenue by renting the space, the market's restaurants also earn additional income from catering those events. A new annex building is on the drawing board -- it would add 6,000 square feet of useable space. The design is already finished and the market is working with local officials to put in place a master plan for the waterfront. Once that is done, Walker says there's just one more hurdle: "Then of course we have to go out and find 5, 6 or 7 million bucks." Pybus Market is located at 7 N Worthen St, Wenatchee. Visit www. pybuspublicmarket.com or phone (509) 888-3900.
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WINTER 2016 | THE GOOD LIFE | They Built This City |
Mike Wolfe Carrying on the family tradition of customer service
ike Wolfe has a twinkle in his eye as he remembers the lessons of his father, Dick Wolfe, who first put an auto repair shop at the South Wenatchee location of today’s Mike Wolfe Service way back in 1949. As a young teenager he learned early on the customer is king. “We treat customers like we would someone in our own family,” Mike says, explaining how the shop has been able to prosper for so many years. The business went through a few different names, but ultimately became Mike Wolfe Service when Mike took over the family business.
Mike and his brother J.R. (Dick Jr.) worked at the business through most of their school years and Mike remembers driving tow trucks by the time he was 16. “I might have been the only high school kid working 50-60 hours a week,” he says, and the work didn’t stop when he and his brother went to Washington State University. They’d come home weekends not to relax, but to work.
The Wolfes’ original service station
ly, he knows them all by their first names -- a sure indication that the business is built on a lot of returning customers. Nowadays, Mike Wolfe Service is repairing cars for the kids and grandkids of his dad’s original customers. Dick Wolfe retired in 1998 and, while Mike took over the automotive repair, his brother JR ran a separate tire business. Eventually, JR sold that business and currently spends about half his time in Mexico. Mike, 63, has a succession plan in place but plans to keep working awhile longer.
“My parents had a real work ethic,” he says. “And my dad was pretty particular how things were done and how people were treated.”
Mike and his wife Barb have three kids who, like Mike, have been active in ski racing at Mission Ridge. All three -- two boys, one girl -- also have at various times been active professionally in rodeos. They also have their own businesses and professions, no doubt inheriting that Wolfe work ethic.
While Mike is explaining all this, he’s sitting in the customer waiting room and he gets up periodically to help out various customers. Interesting-
Mike Wolfe Service focuses on auto repair but, unlike dealers, they work on cars of all makes. The mechanics are constantly getting retrained,
made easier today by online courses. A lot of the repairs these days involve reprogramming the onboard computers and, in essence, making the vehicle operate better because of improvements to the software. Mike thinks he’s seen almost every kind of car at one time or another.
Dick Jr., Dick, Red and Mike Wolfe
Mike Wolfe Service has long been known as the place in Wenatchee to go to fix your car’s air conditioning. Mike has also expanded into tire sales and installation. Ask Mike which cars are best and he admits he favors the Toyota and Lexus brands as well as Suburu. But he says most late model cars today are capable of being driven many
WINTER 2016 | THE GOOD LIFE | They Built This City |
more miles than in the past. He remembers decades ago when cars would max out at 150,000 miles -- today your car can last 300,000 to 400,000 miles. “The key to a long life for your car is good service and maintenance,” he says. Mike Wolfe Service is located at 724 S. Wenatchee Avenue, Wenatchee. Please phone 509-663-1505.
Capturing the beauty of Chelan County A
dozen photographs showcasing the natural beauty of Chelan County have been chosen for the 2017 stewardship calendar. Some 75 photos from 19 photographers were sorted into six categories: plants, wildlife, agriculture, recreation, landscapes and water. The two winning photos in each category were chosen for the calendar. The annual photo contest is sponsored by The Chelan County Clean Water Campaign, a collaborative effort between local businesses, organizations and citizens interested in improving water quality in Chelan County, and Cascadia Conservation District, a non-regulatory grant-funded organization dedicated to wise stewardship of all natural resources. The photo contest ran from April 30 to Oct. 1. In addition, a panel of local judges chose first, second and third place “Best in Show” photos. These three photographers each received a prize for their Best in Show entry. First place went to Brendan Morrison for Northern Lights Stripes. Brendan was awarded a $25 gift certificate from Icicle Brewing Company. Second place went to Dale Blair for Singin a Song. Dale received a $15
gift certificate from Der Man Shoppe. Third place went to Emily March for Lakeside Fruit. Emily received an additional free calendar ($10 value). The stewardship calendars cost $10 each. For information on buying the calendars, contact Cascadia Conservation District at (509) 436-1601 or cascadiacd@ yahoo.com. The 2017 photo contest will begin May 1, 2017.
Photo credits: Top: Northern Lights Stripes by Brendan Morrison. Middle: Lakeside Fruit by Emily March. Bottom: Singin a Song by Dale Blair.
December 2016 | The Good Life
Autumn view of the house from downhill.
Home made A dream, an old pick-up truck and plenty of grit built house without a mortgage
Winter view from the deck of Manson, Lake Chelan and Stormy Mountain. Top and bottom photos by Lief Carlsen
| The Good Life
Lief admires his handiwork of the small-ish log house that incorporates a great deal of character and space.
story By Lief Carlsen photos by donna cassidy
few people are fortunate enough to inherit a house. Most homeowners, however, acquire their homes the hard way — they take out a 20- or 30-year mortgage and, payment-bypayment, buy their way out of indebtedness to a bank. But there is another path to home ownership that requires neither good fortune nor onerous debt — the way I did it. For starters, no bank would have loaned me a nickel in the spring of 1980. I was a young bachelor who had just returned to Chelan after spending the winter as a marginally successful card-counting gambler in Las Vegas. I had something less than $1,000 to my name and no job in sight. What I did have was a dream and, as time would soon tell, the grit to pursue it.
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A wood stove on the edge of the living room heats the house. The stained glass window is a stylized version of the view with Lake Chelan, the mountains, sky and a passing boat.
Kitchen & Bath Fixtures Happy Holidays!
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December 2016 | The Good Life
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HOME MADE }}} Continued from previous page To many, my dream will seem modest — nothing to do with fame or wealth. What I wanted, quite simply, was a home of my own in a peaceful setting where I could raise a family. The family part of my dream, I realized, was something not entirely under my control (I needed a wife), but the home in a peaceful setting seemed quite doable to me as I stood on a forested hillside that spring looking down at Lake Chelan and to the west at the jagged peaks of the snow-covered Cascade Mountains. By happy coincidence, one of my brothers had bought a 20acre parcel of land the previous fall in the unpopulated hills to the north of the town of Chelan, an area called Union Valley. I was paying him $50 a month for
The kitchen includes a garden window and a pass-through space for easy access to the dining table.
2.5 of those acres for a total of $2,500. Never mind that there was
not a square foot of those 2.5 acres that inclined less than 20 degrees, I knew, in the immortal words of Mormon patriarch Brigham Young as he gazed across the land that would one day be Salt Lake City: “This is the place.” Beginning construction of a home with almost no money and no building experience would not seem to be an auspicious way to start but I don’t remember being the least troubled by doubt. Looking back, I am truly awed by my youthful audacity: Blueprints? Carpentry skills? Plumb-
ing expertise? I would figure it out as I went along. It never occurred to me that I might fail. The first thing I needed to do was level out a pad on which my house could stand. A large excavator could have done the job in a day or two but excavators don’t work for free so I opted to do it the old-fashioned way: I unloaded a pick, shovel and wheelbarrow from my vintage International pick-up truck and got to work. For the next several weeks I excavated in the mornings and spent the afternoons scouring
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“DON’T MAKE A MOVE WITHOUT ME!”
Mother-In-Law or Guest House
A snug tub fits into the tiny but adequate five-foot by eight-foot bathroom.
the countryside in my pickup for retaining wall rocks. The excavated dirt was wheelbarrowed and dumped as fill behind the retaining wall. When I hit bedrock at the seven-foot depth, I decided that would be the level of my basement floor. The day I completed my house pad, I felt a great sense of accomplishment. Like a latterday pioneer, I was taming the wilderness. Next on my agenda: logs for my cabin. Pine and fir trees suitable for house logs abounded on my land but I had a better idea. Ten miles up the ridge on Cooper Mountain, a wildfire some years earlier had left thousands of Lodgepole Pines standing, branch-less, bark-less, and only
lightly scorched. For the very reasonable fee of $15 the Forest Service issued me a permit to cut as many as I needed. I rigged a pulley to an uphill tree stump, ran a cable through it with one end of the cable attached to my truck and the other to a log and â€œwinchedâ€? them up to the road. A pickup is not the ideal vehicle for transporting cabin logs but it was what I had so I made do. With 16-foot logs protruding from its 8-foot bed, I precariously bounced my way down the dusty Cooper Mountain Road with load after load. The crescent shape of my cabin was determined by the view I wanted to capture, the
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December 2016 | The Good Life
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HOME MADE }}} Continued from previous page shape of my house pad, and the longest logs I could transport in my truck. There would be no run of more than 16 feet in my walls. Strategically placed windows and doors insured that only a few logs would have to be that long. When I had stockpiled sufficient logs for the first floor, I was itching to start stacking them. With some satisfaction, I noted that I had spent next to nothing at that point. I was sleeping under the stars and cooking on a campfire — living like a hobo and loving it. I could have laid a rock foundation for my cabin — that’s the
way the pioneers did it — but I wanted a first-class home so I held out for a concrete slab. Paying for a concrete truck, however, was a real problem. I was getting ready to mix my own concrete, a daunting task even for a do-it-your-selfer like me, when I got a windfall check for $5,000 from the sale of some property I owned in Manson. Up to this point I had been walking down a narrow path the last hundred yards to my building site because the road ended atop the hill. With my $5,000 I had the road extended and the concrete delivered to site. Family members dropped by that summer to help with pouring the slab and lifting logs into place. By fall, I had the first floor done. I covered it with a temporary roof and hunkered down for the winter.
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Near the beginning: Mary grabs a hammer and works at turning a stack of logs into a home. Photo by Lief Carlsen
That winter I got a job at the Chelan Hospital, which provided much-needed cash for building the upper floors of the house. Union Valley was so unpopulated then that the six-mile road to town was un-plowed so I sometimes skied to work and walked home in the dark — skis atop one shoulder. Come spring of 1981, I had teamed up with a pretty nurse at the hospital, one Mary Hatmaker. We lived in the one completed room of the cabin that summer. We married that fall. The second component of my dream in place (a wife), I labored through the next summer and fall in my spare time to complete the walls and roof of the cabin. Still pinching pennies, the cabin’s windows were cast-offs from the Leavenworth hospital and I fashioned the doors from two-by-six lumber. Spring of 1982, the house, from the outside, looked finished. Inside, it was still a work in progress, but we moved in anyway with our week-old daughter and Mary’s four-year-old son. Flush toilets were still several years off and electric power would not come to Union Val-
ley for nearly 20 years but we had a home — our own, and no mortgage. I loved living in our cabin. We lived rent-free, mortgage-free and we had eggs from our own hens and milk from our goats. But steady work eluded me, so after a few years we moved to Skykomish where I got a job as a teacher. We came back to Chelan in the summers and I added a tall stone chimney one summer. Not until 2004 when we hooked up to PUD power and our children had left the nest and Mary and I contemplated retirement, did we find it practical to move back. We’ve since updated the cabin’s interior, added a second bathroom and built a garage. It’s a very comfortable house now. In the words of a popular song: “Our house is a very, very, very nice house.” When I stand under the big pine tree where I camped that first night in spring 1980 — as I often do — and survey our hillside fiefdom, I never fail to think with unabashed pride, “That’s a damn nice house and, best of all, I built it.”
column GARDEN OF DELIGHTS
Appetizers that don’t ruin your dinner A
ppetizers are tasty and convivial. Eating finger food while waiting for all the guests to arrive and before the dinner is served is a great way to begin a social evening. And, it is wise to have a little food in the tummy before indulging in an alcoholic drink. This season may be the time to rethink appetizers so your guests truly have time to eat each of the dishes you thoughtfully prepared for the main meal. Appetizers are intended to stimulate the appetite so are savory, spicy and include an acid such as vinegar or lemon juice. Sadly, appetizers often smother the appetite. Those yummy hunks of cheese, deep fried treats, sour cream-filled pastry often provide more than a meal’s worth of nutrition, fat and calories. I have heard hostesses bemoan the leftovers from the main meal because people did not eat enough potatoes, gravy, vegetables or meat. The Italian antipasti hark back to the original purpose of appetizers by stimulating the appetite with acid and salt. How can you have a holiday dinner without olives? Olives are versatile. Smoked and preserved fish can be mashed with spices and herbs and served on little toasts such as bruschetta or crostini. Often appetizers are finger food so that you don’t have to balance a napkin, small plate, fork and a wine glass while standing up and being required to shake hands with a new acquaintance. Fresh cut veggies fill the bill as finger food, but how do you deal with the drippy sauce? Fresh, crisp vegetables au natural can
Appetizers to stimulate the appetite rather than those that stuff the diner can include baked eggplant balls or delicious light spring rolls with a variety of ethnic tastes.
be as satisfying as those smothered in fatty mayonnaise or sour cream sauce. Finger-sized crudités can be any raw veggie you love. Try this dipping sauce with the crudites.
Snappy dipping sauce Makes about one cup 2 cooked egg yolks mashed 3 tablespoons dijon mustard 1 shallot finely chopped 1/4 cup low fat yogurt 1 tablespoon capers 1 two oz. can anchovies Puree all the ingredients. Add a few capers and minced green onion for garnish. Add vinegar and oil and this can be a salad dressing.
I like hot, vegetable appetizers. Cold appetizers need more hot spices added because cold food taste more bland. If you are going to serve these eggplant balls cold be sure to add lots of chili pepper. December 2016 | The Good Life
Eggplant appetizers You can bake the eggplant in advance, so preparation will be more efficient. These can be served with a dipping sauce of horseradish and low fat yogurt. 60 minutes 35 appetizers 400 degrees 1 pound eggplant 1 egg 2 cloves garlic 1/2 red onion 2 tablespoons parsley 2 tablespoons basil 1/2 cup grated Parmesan 2 tablespoons lemon juice 2 jalapeno or red chili peppers Salt/pepper 1/4 cup fine breadcrumbs Peel, slice and bake the eggplant for about 20 minutes until it is slightly brown and slightly dry. Cool. In a food processor mix the eggplant and all the rest of the ingredients except the crumbs. Pulse until slightly pasty. Add the breadcrumbs and stir well by hand. Make into 1 inch balls. Bake on a parchment-lined cookie sheet until slightly crusty (30 minutes). Serve hot or at room temperature. www.ncwgoodlife.com
Many people serve wraps made from flour tortilla shells. These shells are calorie laden and filling. Another way to make wraps is to use wonton papers/spring roll shells made with flour or spring roll skins made with tapioca. They are easy to use and are very low calorie. A spring roll skin has about 20 calories and is gluten free. The fillings can be crunchy and satisfying. The best feature is that these filled rolls can be prepared without frying them. The fillings are open to your imagination: Asian, Italian, Mexican, Indian. For example finely grind, cooked shrimp, vegetables, spices and herbs. Use the veggies that you would make crudités and add the ethnic seasoning of your choice. Preparing the round spring roll skins is easy. Soak about 10 skins at a time in warm water for a minute. Fill each with a scant tablespoon of filling — make it spicy and zesty. Fold two edges inward to make an oblong packet, then roll the packet to seal it. Place on parchment paper. Chill. Make and serve them the same day. No further cooking is needed. Bon appetite! Bonnie Orr — the dirt diva — cooks and gardens in East Wenatchee.
Stay & Play We’re sure you’ll stay.
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njoy a FREE, full day and overnight stay at Colonial Vista. Seeing is believing… find out for yourself what it’s like to retire in style. Meet the folks who live here and you will know why, after almost 50 years, it is the premier retirement choice in Wenatchee.
column moving up to the good life
Born to be
Kindness is healthy in so many ways “It’s a little embarrassing that after 45 years of research and study, the best advice I can give people is to be a little kinder to each other.” — Aldous Huxley
• FREE one night stay and play at Colonial Vista • Includes delicious meals in our restaurant style dining room • Join the events and activities all day • Meet old friends and new neighbors as you enjoy the time away • Spend the night in our fully furnished apartment • Enjoy the warmth of our friendly staff • Experience for yourself the Colonial Vista lifestyle “Colonial Vista offers the full spectrum of retirement choices: Independent, Assisted Living, Skilled Nursing and Rehabilitation. The best way to plan for your future.”
601 Okanogan Avenue • Wenatchee 509.663.3337
| The Good Life
few weeks back I witnessed a small commotion at the post office in Cashmere. A woman patron seemed embarrassed and perplexed as the credit card machine was not accepting her card. She needed to send a package containing medicine her husband had forgotten as he rushed to catch a plane. Several people started worriedly murmuring to each other. I ran outside to get my purse out of the car. By the time I came back inside, the woman was leaving. As it turned out, one of the postal workers had gone in the back room and gotten her own purse and paid for the lady’s package. “You can’t do that,” I said, disbelief in my voice. “I just did,” she swiftly replied as she scurried on processing other transactions. Perhaps you, like me, have seen all sorts of acts of selfless kindness — some big, some small, some random, some planned. And you’ve wondered: How is it that we “selfish brutes” are having these sorts of glitches in our programming? Let me propose an idea. Perhaps it isn’t a species malfunctioning at all. Maybe we human www.ncwgoodlife.com
beings are wired to feel compassion and care for others. We may be, as one researcher claims, born to be good. Darwin himself suggested it. In fact, he proposed that those highest in sympathy, the nurturers, were best suited for collective human survival. From an evolutionary standpoint, doing kind acts for others may be exactly what nature has rigged us for. But evolution is a controversial topic, I bring it up only because Darwin’s thinking is often mistakenly used to prop up what may be false all-about-me notions of human nature. Look at other evidence. From physiological and psychological perspective, it seems that kindness is a very good thing. Not just for the recipient of a kindness, we get happier just watching someone else be kind. If we are the ones being kind, here’s what happens to us. We get surges of good-feeling chemicals. We feel less anxious. Our shyness recedes and our confidence grows. Our heart rate and blood pressure go down. We feel happier. Others find us more attractive and seek us out as friends and mates. Kindness and compassion are also quite good for our communities. Kind communities not only feel good to their inhabitants, as places of high trust; but also, according to economists, are much more prosperous. Bottom line. If all of us were a
bit more kind and compassionate, we’d get a big bang for our buck out of it. We’d be “better off” and happier, so would everyone else. Suppose you want to seriously kick up your kindness during December — perhaps as a spiritual or moral stretch, what might you do? Researchers propose two practices to turn up your dial on kindness. The first practice is called “Five Acts of Kindness.” For six weeks you experiment with doing kind acts one day a week. You reflect on its effect on yourself and others. Researchers recommend doing five acts all in one day, each week. You plan your five acts of kindness ahead. You might choose Wednesday as the day you will commit to doing kind acts. As you consider what you might do for others you decide: n To send a card to someone who is in the hospital. n To buy your colleague a latte. n To help a friend shovel their driveway. n To call your mother, daughter, or old friend. n To smile at everyone you pass on your walk to work. After your day of kindness, you reflect on what happened. You tell someone or write about what you did. You consider how it felt to you and to others. That’s it. You can engage in this particular practice anytime you want to effectively ramp up your kindness (and happiness). The second exercise might sound strange if you’ve never heard of it or done it before (you can find more details about it on the internet). In most circles it’s called the “Lovingkindness Meditation” (LKM). It’s been found to be quite effective in helping people not only be more compassionate, but also happier, able to do kind acts without feeling emotionally overwhelmed or burnt out, and better able to balance one’s own well-being with the needs of others. Basically the practice involves
sending kind thoughts to yourself and others. I often do it while I’m walking or running. Another good time is before going to sleep, but any time is fine. The other people you send these loving thoughts to include a person who is a mentor or friend, a “neutral” person like a grocery clerk, and someone with whom you have a difficult relationship. The loving thoughts I usually send are: “May you be happy, may you be healthy; may you use your suffering to build your strengths, to become more compassionate, and to help others.” The LKM can have profound effects. When I have done this with groups of people, someone often cries; they have never sent loving thoughts to themselves. One study showed that a SINGLE SEVEN MINUTE lovingkindness meditation made people feel more connected to and positive about both loved ones and total strangers, and more accepting of themselves. Both these practices take some commitment and time. We don’t have to go big with our kindness or compassion unless we choose. We can start small by paying more attention to others. We could simply muster up a smile and give it away freely. Sounds easy enough — paying more attention to others, but sometimes (especially during the holidays) I can get pretty caught up in my own stuff. Suddenly I’m anxious and lost, not myself. I flounder around desperately thinking about all the books I’ve read, the lectures I’ve heard, as I try to give myself direction for getting back to the good life. Then I recall the opening quotation, the advice, offered by writer and philosopher Aldous Huxley. It lifts my spirits, puts spring in my step. I am reminded of what I may be born to do — however I choose to do it that day. How might you practice a little more kindness and compassion and move up to The Good Life? December 2016 | The Good Life
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column THE TRAVELing DOCTOR
jim brown, m.d.
Healthy snack food — an oxymoron? That the world loves snack
food is obvious since global consumers spend $350 billion annually on snack food. North American sales amount to about $125 billion. This is a major business for many reasons. Humans like to snack. In fact it is estimated that 94 percent of us snack at least once a day in between meals. Millennials (ages 21-38) snack more frequently, as much as four times daily. Snack food in itself is not necessarily unhealthy. However, many snack foods contain too much processed sugar, fats and preservatives that might not be healthy. Most people love chocolate, sweets (sugar) and salty foods. The producers know what we want even down to the flavors we like. Many of us buy flavored potato chips because they taste even better. One problem with snack food is that they add extra calories to our diets and potentially can lead to problems such as heart disease, obesity and diabetes and other chronic health conditions. Too many people get far to many of their calories from snack foods rather than whole-
value including protein, vitamins, minerals and fiber. They have little or no food value and just add to the waistline. “Fast food,” on the other hand, can be somewhat healthier and for many is an actual meal rather than a quick junk food snack. Most fast food restaurants are now putting the nutritional information including the calories on the menu so we can have a better idea of what we are eating. Unfortunately, the size of these meals is getting bigger all the time, and buyers have an option to “supersize” that for additional Pam Conrath: Tired of unhealthy vending calories. machine selections, she thought there must This might have a lot be a better way. to do with the fact that Americans have increased some meals. Most of us know their consumption of calories by we should be snacking on 1,000 a day since 1980, and as a vegetables and fruit like carrots, consequence, 62 percent of adult apples, nuts or oranges, which is Americans are now overweight far more healthful. compared with 46 percent in There is a difference between 1980. Today 27 percent of us are snack foods and “junk” food. considered obese, meaning a Junk food refers to foods that weight of 30 pounds over what a are high in calories that contain healthy weight should be. way too many “empty calories” On top of that Americans from processed sugar and exces- don’t get as much exercise now sive fats. They lack nutritional as the average American did in
| The Good Life
1980. Recently I ran into Pam Conrath, R.N., and asked her what she was doing now, assuming she might have retired. She said she has started her own business, which was something she had always wanted to do. I have known Pam for most of my medical career in Wenatchee. She is quite an amazing talented woman, having been a bedside ICU nurse for her first 10 years and then spending the rest of her career in consulting work for various health care organizations in the Seattle area. She “retired” in 2012, but that didn’t last long. For the next few years she was a nursing executive consultant for Soyrind, a nurse-owned company based in Florida providing nursing consultations nationwide. It was on her many nationwide travels that she found the business she wanted to start in this area. Tired of the various mostly unhealthy snack foods available in hotels, motels and hospitals, she thought there must be a better way. After much searching, she found the company “Naturals 2 Go” that was providing healthy
snacks and beverages in their vending machines. Pam started her own company, Smart Snacks, LLC, and in June, 2016 she purchased five vending machines from Naturals 2 Go and was off and running. She and her daughter have installed four vending machines in Wenatchee. One is in the Drop-N-Go laundromat in East Wenatchee and three machines are at the Confluence Health Hospital. The fifth machine will be placed by December. Most of Pam’s products are rated in the Healthy Nutrition Guideline for all Food Items as healthier and healthiest. Her healthy snacks emphasize nutrient-rich, mostly whole organic foods that contain little or no added sugar and sodium. For example, she sells Smart Food popcorn, oven baked potato chips, Welches fruit snack, veggie straws and Cliff bars. Her vending machines also have typical snack food that other vendors provide. Initially, when she was installing the machines, there were customers who were concerned there would not be snacks to their liking or that they might be “too healthy.” Now after a few months of operation, she is getting positive feed back about the selections offered. The customers overall are making good choices buying a wide variety of healthy snacks along with traditional chocolate bars. Her top sellers are low-fat chips and healthy popcorn. The machines have a computer pad on the front that allows customers to email her with suggestions or questions. Each machine takes about two hours of labor per week. The 10 hours a week meets her part-time business goal. Her goal is to have a proven successful part-time business that by June 2017 will have a positive cash flow to repay her start up investment costs over five years. She wants to continue as a part time business but
would consider future expansion based on how successful this venture becomes. I personally am not opposed to snack foods. Like most everyone else I do like chocolate, salty nuts and interesting flavors. I try to reach for an apple, an orange or a carrot for a snack when possible. When I can’t, I look for the healthiest snack available, opting for those that are nutritious, baked, low in both fat and processed sugar. Recently, I have been on a long driving trip, and whenever I stopped for gas, I checked out the foods and snacks that were typically available at the minimarts located in most all these gas stations. After some difficulty, I was able to find some snack foods that met the “healthier” criteria, but they were few and far between. I estimated that not more that 5 percent might be considered healthy, based on no trans fat, no preservatives, low in sodium and sugar, baked rather than fried. The best one I found was Yogurt Nut Mix by Snack Club. It was very tasty and satisfying too. I hope the bandwagon Pam Conrath is on will continue to grow. It appears to be as the healthy snack market is increasing with sales that are expected to reach $25 billion in 2016. In 2013, Washington Governor Jay Inslee signed an executive order that required state executive agencies to adopt and implement food service guidelines that meet the Department of Health’s Healthy Nutritional Guidelines. They set criteria to ensure that healthy options can be found in cafeterias, cafes, on-site retail venues, vending machines, meetings and events and institutional food service. It is a good start. Jim Brown, M.D., is a retired gastroenterologist who has practiced for 38 years in the Wenatchee area. He is a former CEO of the Wenatchee Valley Medical Center. December 2016 | The Good Life
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Making glass works is a little like life for danni everson — she went where the art took her By Susan Lagsdin
The Roman poet Ovid said:
“Let your hook always be cast; in the pool where you least expect it there will be a fish.” Danni Everson’s life for the past 35 years she’s lived in Wenatchee has been a good example of that optimistic outlook — she’s been open to opportunity and has found great satisfaction in the unexpected outcomes. Danni and her husband Conrad are at the center of Pybus Market every Saturday displaying their fused glass serving ware, fluted vases and art pieces. The glass is a surefire shopper magnet, and their go-to-market van is always several pieces lighter on the return trip. But the path to this successful side business wasn’t a straight one. The Eversons moved here in 1981, and Danni was waitressing in a downtown restaurant when the little café in the nearby Doneen building came up for sale. Heck, it looked like fun so they bought it, and soon Danni’s Place accumulated a clientele of regulars who appreciated homecooked meals and the easy location. A little display-sized area in the corner was empty, so Danni, who’d just taken her first-ever stained glass class, decided to hang up some pieces she’d made and even turned the space into a studio. (“The teacher didn’t think I did very well, but I liked it a lot…” she says). So did passers-by, it turns out. Soon the restaurant was a thing of the past and the Everson’s moved the tiny shop to the Huggins shoe store location, which became Classy Glass, a showcase of her quickly bur-
Metal pressed into glass and refired in the kiln can create textured overlays that meld a dramatic background (fire? sunset?) with realistic motifs.
Pybus regulars from its inaugural year, Danni and Conrad Everson love chatting about their work, and anything else, with Saturday strollers and shoppers. This is their only retail outlet, and it’s worked well for them every week. LEFT: This dish, one of Danni’s favorite abstract pieces, represents a mountain meadow and surrounding timber to her, Central Park and apartments to other viewers.
Allowing the glass sheets to drape over a central mold creates a surprising variety of unpredictable shapes with a common theme, so this green fluted vase is one-of-a-kind.
geoning talent and a hub of stained glass supplies and glass objects d’art for neighboring communities. That kind of good luck (AKA “taking chances”) still doesn’t strike her as extraordinary. Her first stained glass commission came from a Soap Lake minister
| The Good Life
who wanted a new window for his church. She hated saying no, so she taught herself to work on a much-magnified scale. “When you want something, you just jump in with both feet,” she said. As Danni turned the pages of her small photo albums, the only archive of decades of
work, she smiled at a few notable pieces that are alive and well in area homes and churches. One arched and multi-paned Palladian-styled window with an intricate realistic design caught the eye. “How in the world did you do all that?” was the obvious
... colors change, plates dip and curve, draped glass spills into dramatic configurations, and what comes out ... is almost always a surprise. question. “I just got a book,” she said, “And I taught myself. We laid out two big tables and I just started putting the pieces together…” Page after page show vibrant stained glass creations, from a delicate light catcher on filament to tall windows with religious motifs. A matching door and sidelight in one house, a span of cabinet fronts in another, a three-paneled artwork to front an entertainment center and dozens of single windows reflecting and refracting light through decidedly untypical designs. But Danni’s art life turned in another direction almost 20 years ago. Vacationing in Arizona, she and Conrad (who was dabbling meanwhile in silver-smithing and pottery) were enthralled by an exhibit of glass beadwork and immediately bought a small kiln to start experimenting with fused glass, their current art form of choice.
By chance, they created for themselves a brand-new hobby. Their basement and garage changed from a stained glass to a fused glass studio. They store hundreds of carefully chosen glass sheets, clear and in multicolors, that are handpicked from their Redmond supplier’s warehouse. Those are cut to size and placed on stainless steel molds, then placed in the kiln at 1,480 degrees (“Conrad’s my kiln man,” said Danni. “I just do the designs.”) That’s the step 1-2-3 part. Though it’s a known science, what happens then is a mystery of sorts — as the glass fuses, colors change, plates dip and curve, draped glass spills into dramatic configurations, and what comes out cooled at the end of the process is almost always a surprise. “Everything is really one-ofa-kind,” Danni explained, “We don’t do production dishware — it’s the single pieces that people really want.” For years, Danni used her own original drawing and design talent on the stained-glass pieces, and she still augments some of the fused glass with her artwork. What’s next? Danni, at 73, shrugged, “I’m sure something will change. And I’m always up for a new challenge.” Until it changes, until the cast line dips into another pool, expect every Saturday to see the Everson’s shimmering fused glass — each piece an unpredictable artistry and chance.
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NCW Blues Jam, every second and fourth Tuesday, 7 p.m. Riverside Pub at Columbia Valley Brewing, 538 Riverside Dr. Info: facebook. com/NCWBluesJam. Upper Valley Running Club Runs, every Tuesday night. Check in between 4:30 – 6 p.m. for a marked 3 mile trail route. Run or walk. Complete 10 or more and earn an incentive. Sleeping Lady Mountain Resort. Info: sleepinglady. com. Weekly Club Runs, every Thursday check in between 4:30 and 6:30 p.m. at Saddle Rock Pub and Brewery. Either a 5k or 10k walk or run on the Apple Capital Recreation Loop Trail. Complete 10 weekly runs and receive a free shirt. Cost: free (other than a smile). Info: Joel Rhyner 387-0051. 2 Left Feet, every Thursday, 7 – 9 p.m. 2 Left Feet is a loose organization of local dance enthusiasts who would like to see more dancing in the Wenatchee Valley. Beginner lesson at the top of the hour followed by carefree social dancing. No partner necessary to join in the fun. Dance style will be 1940s swing with a bit of salsa, blues, waltz or tango thrown in. Pybus Public Market. Cost: free. Info: pybuspublicmarket.org. Game Night, every fourth Friday, 7 – 9 p.m. Board games, card games or any games you would like to bring. Open to all and all ages. Pybus Public Market. Cost: free. Info: pybuspublicmarket.org. Wenatchee Farmers Market, every Saturday, 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. until Christmas. Pybus Public Market. Jam at the Crow, 7 – 10 p.m. Ev-
ery first Sunday. Special guests Rafael Tranquilino and Leah Tussing. The Club Crow in Cashmere, 108 1/2 Cottage Ave. Cost: free. Robert Graves, now until 12/8. Mon. – Thursday, 9 a.m. 1 p.m. Exhibition of art by Roberts Graves, founder of Robert Graves Gallery at Wenatchee Valley College, Sexton hall. Cost: free. Journey to Bethlehem, 12/1-4, 5:30 – 9:30 p.m. Experience the town of Bethlehem as it was the night the Christ child was born. The Journey includes over 150 actors in full costume and a living nativity with sheep, goats, donkeys, chickens and a camel. Dress for the outdoor weather. Seventh-day Adventist Church, 5th and Western. Reserve tour: j2bwenatchee.org. Cost: free. Wings n’ Wishes Tree Lighting, 12/1, 6 p.m. Santa arrives on a fire truck, cookies, cocoa, s’mores, Christmas Carols and bring your camera for photos with Santa. East Wenatchee City Hall. Cost: free. Stage kids Presents: Elf Jr. 12/1-3, 6:30 12/2, 12:30, 12/3, 1:30 p.m. Based on the beloved holiday film, this hilarious fish-out-of-water comedy play follows Buddy the Elf in his quest to find his family and true identity. Performing Arts Center. Cost: $15 adults, $12 students or at the door $17 adults, $14 students. Info: numericapac.org. The Addams Family, 12/1, 2, 3, 8, 9 10, 7 p.m. A musical comedy presented by Eastmont High School. Eastmont High School auditorium. Cost: $15 adults, $10 students Lo and Behold: Reveries of the Connected World, 12/1, 7 p.m. Oscar nominated documentarian Werner Herzog chronicles the
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The Valley’s Best Mix of Music + The Latest Local News Music The Whole Family Can Agree On! With the Biggest Hits of the 80’s and 90’s KOHO 101.com News you need, voices you trust, and music that keeps you moving December 2016 | The Good Life
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}}} Continued from previous page virtual world from its origins to its outermost reaches, exploring the digital landscape with the same curiosity and imagination he previously trained on earthly destinations as disparate as Amazon, the Sahara, the South Pole and Australian outback. Snowy Owl Theater. Cost: $10 advance or $12 at the door. Info: icicle.org. White Christmas the Musical, 12/1, 2, 3, 15, 16, 17, 7:30 p.m. Saturday matinees, 2 p.m. Wenatchee High School Choral departments live performance. WHS auditorium. Cost: $16 adults, $13, seniors, $10 students and Veterans. Ticket: PAC or numericapac.org. Christmas Lighting Festival, 12/2, 3, 4, 9, 10, 11, 16, 17, 18. Fridays 4, 9 p.m., Saturdays and Sundays 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. Live musical performances, Christmas songs fill the streets, St. Nicholas arrival, holiday characters and more. Downtown Leavenworth. Cost: free. Info: leavenworth.org.
Just Us Band, 12/2, 6 – 8 p.m. Live performance on the railcar. Pybus Public Market. Info: pybuspublicmarket.org. First Friday events include: *Two Rivers Art Gallery, 12/2, 5 – 8 p.m. Show title: VvB KvB Art, a joint artistic venture by Victor von Beck and Kellie von Beck. The von Becks create in glass, metal paint and other media. Music by Well Strung. Wines by Cougar Crest Estates. Complimentary refreshments. 102 N Columbia, Wenatchee. Cost: free. Info: 2riversgallery.com. *Merriment Party Goods, 12/2, 5 – 8 p.m. Artist for December will be Brenda McGowan Jewelry, she and her husband Dewey create a line of artesian jewelry using recycled sterling silver and gold along with hand picked gemstones. Sips and snacks available. 23, S Wenatchee Ave. Cost: free. Info: facebook.com/merrimentpartygoods. *Tumbleweed Bead Co., 12/2, 5-7 p.m. Tumbleweed Jewelry is a versatile, feminine, and classy line of jewelry made locally using recycled metals. Refreshments served. 105 Palouse St. Cost: free. Info: tumble-
weedbeadco.com. *Small Artworks Gallery, 12/2, 5 p.m. Regional High School Art Show artists works will be on display at the Wenatchee Valley Museum and Cultural Center. Cost: free. Info: wvmcc.org. Hot club Cool Yule, 12/2, 7 p.m. The Hot Club of San Francisco is an ensemble of accomplished and versatile musicians who celebrate the music of Django Reinhardt and Stephane Grappelli’s pioneering Quintette du Hot Club de France with style and panache. Snowy Owl Theater. Cost: $22 advance or $24 at the door. Info: icicle.org. Re-Grand Opening, 12/3, 9 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. The Wenatchee Racquet and Athletic Club turns 55 years old and still growing up and out. Come see the new fitness center. Fitness and tennis classes, ribbon cutting, tennis mixer and racquetball tournament. Refreshments, presentation, drawings, raffle and more. WRAC. Cost: free. Drones 101, 12/3, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Learn to fly, and shoot photos with a drone. Icicle Creek campus. Cost:
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Playing for Keeps Guitar and repair man lance tigner Lives His Art
By Susan Lagsdin
ance Tigner’s left forearm is heavily inked, so when he plays his beloved Martin guitar the muscles ripple under a blue tattoo of that same instrument. It’s ornamented with a musical staff and notes of a song he first learned from his father and first taught his own son: “You are my sunshine, my only sunshine.…” Lance’s life has come full circle recently, with music and family at the epicenter. The reason he moved back home last year to Wenatchee to stay — after four decades away — is to be near his mother, and his grown son, in the wake of his father’s death. A professional singer/songwriter/guitarist, Lance intends to continue his musical career. And that’s a career that started so early he can’t remember caring to do much else. He clearly remembers thinking at six years of age, “I want to play the guitar every day and get paid for it.” His first guitar lessons taught him Steven Foster songs, which were satisfying until he was galvanized by Luis Prima’s voice in the original film of The Jungle Book (he still belts out “I Want to Be Like You”). Then he heard the Beatles on Ed Sullivan and never turned back. Lance’s education from grade
SKETCHES OF LOCAL ARTISTS
school through Wenatchee High School (Class of ‘75) was packed full of music – lessons, performances, big bands and small bands, as he moved from entertaining at family events and church to the pit at Apple Blossom musicals to front man in rock bands and a seat in the symphony. He learned to love ’30s and ’40s tunes as much as angry young rocker songs and latched on to some personal favorites: Greg Allman, John Lennon, Elvis Presley. And, he gratefully recalls fond memories of socializing and jamming with some of the best music teachers in Wenatchee.
used and abused horns. Now he’s gathered all his precision tools and fixit inventions into a small workshop on Easy Street named On the Mend, in a house where he and his wife also live happily amidst acres of grass with orchard views. It’s admittedly smaller than their previous home — but in exactly the right town. Lance, who says he strives for “optimal unobtainable balance,” is blissfully between Lance Tigner’s tidy pressure systems: workshop holds all he’s never felt he needs to repair the pressure to and restore wind quit music and instruments like this find other emFrench horn; a spare ployment, and bedroom is home to he’s never felt his guitars and other the pressure to music paraphernalia, compete with where he plays, other guitarsings and composes ists. “My goal to his heart’s Also well-educated as a musician has content. in musicology by always been to be Spokane community better than I was college music prothe day before. . . grams, he says he can play just at a young age I knew this would about anything well enough to make me the kind of person I be heard. “I have an equally lov- wanted to be.” ing relationship with all musical That said, he’s still amused instruments,” he said tactfully, that for much of his adult life his “but the guitar is the only one mother prefaced her long-disthat truly enables me to comtance phone calls with “So, did municate.” you get a job? Or are you still Learning to repair brass wind playing the guitar?” and wood wind instruments Still playing the guitar? from talented mentors here was Yes. In Seattle, for 27 years he a parallel career step that has was the front man for bands that served him well. In both Seplayed gigs all over the country attle and Honolulu, he’s always as well as for his own successowned or ran a repair shop and ful group, The Delta Nine — all lovingly repaired thousands of the while busking at Pike Street December 2016 | The Good Life
“My goal as a musician has always been to be better than I was the day before. . . at a young age I knew this would make me the kind of person I wanted to be.” Market (picture the open guitar case brimming with dollar bills). The last few years his mom was phoning his beachfront condominium in Waikiki with the same question, and he persuaded her that he was doing OK. Living in or near Honolulu for eight years, he was not only one of the few musical instrument repairmen around, with a busy shop, but he’d put out some CDs and had regular gigs as vocalist/guitarist with popular island-hopping bands, playing Creedence Clearwater, Tom Petty, the Rolling Stones. In this last year since Lance moved back to Wenatchee, he’s performed at casual venues like Sticks House of Cigars, Eastside Coffee Company and Lake Entiat Grill, where audiences have tapped and swayed to Gershwin, Paul Simon, Elvis Costello, and Lance’s rich mix of raunchy rock and blues, easy-on-the ear pop, midcentury show tunes and traditional guitar greats. He’s jammed with a few old music-making buddies and listened appreciatively to local performers. And he’s now able to play an occasional gig with an accomplished young guitarist he knows very well: his son Maxwell Royce (a name composed of his grandparents’ first names). It’s all in the family, and it’s all about music.
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}}} Continued from page 36 $45. Info: icicle.org. Wenatchee Riverfront Railway, 12/3, noon – 4 p.m. Ride the Christmas train at the home of the Nile Saunders Orchard Train at Wenatchee Riverfront Park, 155 N Worthen Street. Cost: $1. Santa Arrives in Downtown
Wenatchee, 12/3, 4:30 – 6 p.m. Wenatchee Convention Center. Film Series: Bolshoi Ballet’s The Nutcracker, 12/3, 7 p.m. A holiday classic. Snowy Owl Theater. Cost: $13 advance or $15 at the door. Info: icicle.org. Mingle and Jingle, 12/4, noon – 5 p.m. Downtown Wenatchee. Santa Arrives by red helicopter, 12/4, 1 p.m. Come watch Santa and bring your camera to take photos with Santa. Pybus Public
Market. Cost: free. Info: pybuspublicmarket.org. The Price is Right, 12/4, 7 p.m. Come on down and play classic games from television’s longest running game show. Town Toyota Center. Info: towntoyotacenter.com. Winter Music Concert and recital, 12/6, 5 – 7:15 p.m. Valley Academy of Learning brings their music students to perform winter music. Pybus Public Market. Cost: free. Info: pybuspublicmarket.org. Bird ID Skills Building, 12/7, 12/21, 7:30 – 9:45 a.m. Come along with naturalist and Land Trust Conservation fellow Susan Ballinger on this bi-monthly outing for birders of all levels, from beginner to expert. Hone your field ID skills and learn to contribute to the online birding
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tool eBird, which lets you track your findings and contribute real data used by scientists to monitor bird populations around the world. Participants can come for as little as 30 minutes at a time. These trips are appropriate for all levels of birders, and take place at Walla Walla Park (meet at the north end of the park near the restrooms). No RSVP required. Info: Susan Ballinger at firstname.lastname@example.org. The Chance Brothers, 12/9, 6 – 8 p.m. Live performance on the railcar. Pybus Public Market. Info: pybuspublicmarket.org. Family Christmas Show, 12/9, 7:30 p.m. 12/10, 2:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. An old-timed radio show with a tender Christmas story, stunning singers and musicians with all your Christmas favorites, spiced wine
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and hot chocolate, and Christmas fun for the whole family. Snowy Owl Theater. Info: icicle.org. The Nutcracker, 12/9, 10, 7 p.m. 12/11, 2 p.m. The Wenatchee Valley Symphony Orchestra presents The Nutcracker along with Fabulous Feet Academy of Ballet. Numerica Performing Arts Center. Cost: $18 $37. Info: numericapac.org. Christmas Family Fun Day, 12/10, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Arts and crafts. Wenatchee Valley Museum and Cultural Center. Cost: $10. Photos with Santa, 12/10, 11 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. Pizza and crafts with free photos with Santa. Wenatchee Convention Center. Photos with Santa, 12/10, 11, 17, 18, 1 – 3 p.m. Bring your camera and take pictures with Santa. Pybus Public Market. Cost: free. Info: pybusbpublicmarket.org. Rock Around Christmas/A Holiday Ice Show, 12/10, 4:30 p.m., 12/11, 2 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. The Wenatchee Figure Skating Club’s 2016 Holiday Ice Show at the Town Toyota Center. Tickets: email@example.com. Cost: $5 - $10, kids under 3 free. Opera Series: L’Amour de Lion – The Met: Live in HD, 12/19, 9:55 a.m. Snowy Owl Theater. Cost: $22 advance or $24 at the door. Info: icicle.org. Lifted: A ski film for the rest of us, 12/12, 6 and 8 p.m. North 40 Productions presents a wintertime love story exploring the universal attraction between skier, boarder and mountain. Numerica Performing Arts Center. Cost: $15. Info: numericapac.org. Back Country Film Festival, 12/14, 7 p.m. The Backcountry Film Festival celebrates its 12th year with 11 short films aimed to inspire winter adventurers to seek the snow less traveled. This annual bash hosted by El Sendero showcases inspirational and thoughtprovoking films that embody El Sendero’s mission to promote and protect quiet winter landscapes and access for human-powered snow sports on public lands. Numerica Performing Arts Center. Cost: $12 at the door. Film Series: Joyuex Noel, 12/15, 7 p.m. A French film that tells the true-life story of the spontaneous Christmas Eve truce declared by Scottish, French and German troops in the trenches of World War I. Snowy Owl Theater. Cost: $12
advance or $12 at the door. Info: icicle.org. Mike Bills, 12/2, 6 – 8 p.m. Live performance on the railcar. Pybus Public Market. Info: pybuspublicmarket.org.
Holiday movie on the big screen: Die Hard, 12/19, 6:30 p.m. Numerica Performing Arts Center. Cost: $3.
Magical Strings Celtic Yuletide, 12/16, 7 p.m. Three generations of the Boulding family will set the stage ablaze with the Tara Academy Irish Dancers, lively fiddling of Jocelyn Pettit, soulful songs with brilliant Dublin guitarist Colm MacCarthaigh and dynamic percussionist Matt Jerrell. And more. Snowy Owl Theater. Cost: $22 advance or $24 at the door. Info: icicle.org.
Holiday movie on the big screen: Holiday Inn, 12/20, 6:30 p.m. Numerica Performing Arts Center. Cost: $3. Info: numericapac.org.
Christmas with the Columbia Chorale, 12/16, 7:30 p.m. Classics, familiar tunes and beloved carols of the season will be featured along with the brass quartet, the Leavenworth Christmas Brass. Numerica Performing Arts Center. Info: numericapac.org. Christmas on the Mountain, 12/17, 2 – 5 p.m. Face painting, gingerbread decorating, a special reading of How the Grinch Stole Christmas, s’mores around the campfire, Santa, hot chocolate, cider and a Torch Light Parade at nightfall. Base area of Mission Ridge. Cost: free. Info: missionridge.com.
of Jesus Christ’s birth told through scripture and song. Saddlerock Evangelical Presbyterian Church. After the 30-minute presentation attendees are invited inside the church to warm up with hot apple cider and cookies. Cost: free. Info: saddlerockepc.org.
Arts Center. Cost: $3. Info: numericapac.org.
The Balsam Roots, 12/21, 6 – 7 p.m. Live performance on the railcar by 10-year-old cellist Isabel and 8-year-old sister violinist Caroline Menna of Leavenworth. Pybus Public Market. Info: pybuspublicmarket.org. Old Time Radio Show: A Christmas Story, 12/22, 7:30 p.m. Local performers bring this story to the stage in 1940s style radio hour as it is broadcast live. Numerica Performing Arts Center. Cost: $9- $19. Info: numerica.org. Lance Tigner, 12/23, 6 – 8 p.m. Live performance on the railcar. Pybus Public Market. Info: pybuspublicmarket.org. Living Nativity, 12/23, 5 and 6 p.m. 12/24, 5 p.m. Hear the story
The Saddle Rockers, 12/30, 6 – 8 p.m. Live performance on the railcar. Pybus Public Market. Info: pybuspublicmarket.org. The Official Blues Brothers Revue, 12/30, 7:30 p.m. Discovered in Las Vegas, performers Wayne Catania and Kieron Lafferty capture the infectious humor and unbridled spirit of the Blues Brothers like no one since John Belushi and Dan Aykroyd walked the stage. Backed by a powerhouse band, they’ll give you a show to remember, packed with classic hits from the Blues Brothers catalog, including Soul Man, Rubber Biscuit, Sweet Home Chicago, and more. Numerica Performing Arts Center. Cost: $19-$35. Info: numericapac.org. New Year’s Eve Party, 12/31, 6 – 11:30 p.m. Ski, board and tube at Echo Valley. Cost: $7 to tube or $10 to ski/board/tube. Info: echovalley. org.
Appleaires Mini-Concert and auction, 12/17, 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. Holiday music in the concourse at Pybus Public Market. Cost: free. Info: pybuspublicmarket.org. A Candlelight Christmas, 12/17, 7 p.m. A night of Holiday magic and wonder with Andre Feriante (guitar), Overton Berry (piano), and Steve Thoreson (tenor). Journey into the mystical, early Christmas classics and other fun favorites, plus a Christmas story from Andre and Steve. You will hear a mix of classic songs presented as trios, duos and solos with vocals, piano and Andre’s mix of exotic stringed instruments, including his classical harp guitar. Snowy Owl Theater. Cost: $22 advance or $24 at the door. Info: icicle.org. Brittany Jean, 12/17, 7 p.m. Brewster based singer/songwriter will perform. All proceeds go to rebuilding the iconic Pateros billboard – which was lost in the fires. Numerica Performing Arts Center. Cost: $20. Info: bjeanmusic.com. Holiday movie on the big screen: Polar Express, 12/18, 6:30 p.m. Numerica Performing December 2016 | The Good Life
The Chamber Tasting Room
Downtown Wenatchee Wine Tasting and Bottle Sales 12 regional wineries and cidery Open: 11am-5pm Monday-Wednesday 11am-6pm Thursday – Saturday 1 S Wenatchee Avenue | 509.662.2116 | wenatchee.org
Water spills from the Rock Island Dam. Photo courtesy of the Chelan County PUD
column those were the days
Clamor for Rock Island Dam began in 1908 “Dams and locks needed
at Rock Island Rapids” — so said a headline in the Feb. 5, 1908 Wenatchee Daily World. The story went on to extol the benefits of an “open river” between Wenatchee and Priest Rapids that would allow for trade with the new town of Beverly on the Milwaukee Railroad near the present site of Wanapum Dam. A dam, the World said, “would be necessary at Rock Island. Water power might be developed to generate electricity to pump water for the irrigation of hundreds of acres of the finest
land between Rock Island and Wenatchee.” An engineer, C.C. Ward, believed the dam could be built for $500,000 or less. It was envisioned then that the primary purposes of the dam would be irrigation, locks for ship passage and a slack water harbor at Wenatchee. Four years later the vision had grown to include power production. In a May 1912 Daily World story steamboat captain Fred McDermott, a visionary of sorts, proposed that “the whole river can be harnessed, which would generate a power exceeding any existing utilized power in the
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West.” Captain McDermott believed that — along with providing power for manufacturing, heating, lighting, electric railroads and a multitude of other advantages for the Wenatchee area — the dam could also extend irrigation to the Quincy Flat. Others saw the potential to irrigate 40,000 acres around Moses Lake with water pumped from the dam’s reservoir. By 1913 the Wenatchee Daily World and its editor, Rufus Woods, were deeply involved in promoting a dam at the Rock Island Rapids. They noted that year that
someone named William Scheffel had filed for rights to 25,000 cubic feet of water per second for a dam at Rock Island to generate power. According to an August 1975 story in the World by Hu Blonk, it was unclear who Mr. Scheffel was or who he represented. Interestingly, his estimate of the water flow necessary for such a dam was spot on. By 1920 the Daily World was strongly advocating for the dam. The paper opined that within the next few years Wenatchee
“It is impossible to over-estimate what the dam would mean to the community.” would have a population of 25,000 - 50,000 and would need a power system to support that growth. The Commercial Club (forerunner of the Chamber of Commerce) agreed. The dam seemed to be a certainty. The only real questions remaining were who would build it and where the power would go. The second question was addressed a few months later at a meeting of the Commercial Club. The membership resolved to immediately send a telegraph to the U.S Department of the Interior asking that the power generated by a future dam at the Rock Island Rapids be withheld for the city of Wenatchee and surrounding areas. At that time it was believed that a dam could be built, depending on its size, for two to three and a half million dollars. It would produce 50,000 horsepower of energy for Wenatchee and irrigate 20,000 acres of prime land from East Wenatchee to Rock Island with the possibility of pumping additional irrigation water to Quincy. Eight more years passed before that optimism became reality. In late November of 1928 Leslie Coffin, representing Puget Sound Power and Light Company (provider of electricity to Wenatchee since 1924) met with the Wenatchee Chamber of Commerce with news that his company had filed paperwork with the state of Washington for permission to develop the Rock Island site and would apply for a federal permit soon. They proposed a dam to be finished by 1932 at a cost of $10.5 million. It would produce 60,000 horsepower and irriga-
tion water for Wenatchee Valley orchards. The plan, however, did not include irrigation for Quincy or locks for ship passage. The Chamber of Commerce enthusiastically took on the job of negotiating riparian rights from landowners along the dam’s proposed reservoir from Rock Island to three miles up river from Wenatchee. Excitement in the valley was high. The Daily World trumpeted that, “It is impossible to over-estimate what the dam would mean to the community.” Property values would rise, pulp and paper plants would come
and a cannery industry would develop. The project was not without objections, mostly from commercial and sport fishing interests concerned about disruption of salmon spawning. The Okanogan County Game Commission warned, “You’re fencing off the greatest and most perfect spawning ground on earth, destroying something that was there forever.” The objections were countered by Puget Power’s promise to cooperate with the fishery interests and build a system better, “or at least as good a one as that now provided by nature.”
In October of 1929 Puget Power and Light received the federal license to construct the dam. It would use 24,000 feet per second of water, cost $20 million and produce 84,000 horsepower. The first power from Rock Island Dam was generated and sent on its way in November, 1931. Historian, actor and teacher Rod Molzahn can be reached at shake. firstname.lastname@example.org. His third history CD, Legends & Legacies Vol. III - Stories of Wenatchee and North Central Washington, is now available at the Wenatchee Valley Museum and Cultural Center and at other locations throughout the area.
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column ALEX ON WINE
What wine pares nicely with cabbage? But before answering that tough question, some special thanks to local wine pioneers
t is December, and I’m shouting my usual “Humbug,” but I’m also singing the praises of a great many of the successes of our local wineries. First, though, I want to offer a fond message of farewell to two wineries that are no more. Join me in wishing a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to Warren and Julie Moyles of the once marvelous La Toscana Winery. I miss your Merlot, Warren, but I’m delighted you’re still smiling. Warren planted his grapes long before there were grapes in Chelan, and he helped Ed Rutledge put the vines in at the Eagle Creek Winery. Although Warren is no longer making wine, his grapes appear to have a future. The Moyles’ friend and fellow vintner, Lavon Fischer, is now tending the vineyard and taking the harvest. He has just moved the results from bins to barrels up on his property and plans to bottle sometime down the road. Another of the original local wineries was Dutch John’s Winery, created by George Valison when he and his wife, Patricia Valison lived in Cashmere. Some of you Wenatchee residents may remember the original tasting room in Wenatchee in the front of the print shop at the end of GS Center Road, just Know of someone stepping off the beaten path in the search for fun and excitement? E-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org
off Ohme Gardens Road. The winery’s success grew, thanks to the quality of the wines and the hard work by George in his marketing efforts. The Dutch John’s Winery tasting room in the Mission District of Cashmere now houses the wines of Cashmere Cellars, but the memories of George and Dutch John’s lingers in the room and along the corridors. Two of the early pioneers have closed their doors, but they did pave the way and in a sense, built the foundation for the emerging wine industry in the valley here. Merry Christmas, gentlemen, and thanks for the memories we have of you and your wines. You are missed. More reminiscing of a different kind: Before I learned of my Italian/ Greek heritage, I often enjoyed Christmas holiday meals that had Austro-Hungarian and Ukrainian flairs to them. One of my early favorites was the cream of mushroom soup made from mushrooms grandma and I gleaned from the nearby forest. Mind you, I was along to listen, look and learn, not to harvest. That soup deserves the complement of a full, secondary fermentation, complex Chardonnay. Local wineries offer many from which to choose, but if you’ve not yet tried it, let me suggest Karma Vineyards American Oak Chardonnay this holiday season. Or, do what I did this fall, and have both a Karma French Oak and that American Oak and learn the difference for yourselves while enjoying both. These are lovely wines. Main courses at holiday meals almost always had stuffed cabbage rolls, (halupki). In my
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youth, different families had different recipes. In Dad’s parents’ home, the cabbage rolls were made with a tomato based sauce — not a marinara type, but a lighter, softer, liquid tomato sauce. I loved them. I was sorry when my aunt started making them instead of Grandma Saliby, because she used Campbell’s tomato soup as her base. Still tasty stuffed cabbage rolls, but not Grandma’s. In my maternal grandmother’s kitchen there were no tomatoes in the stuffed cabbage roll sauce; hers was a rich brown gravy, and the huge roaster they were cooked in contained quartered potatoes, which Grandma insisted had to be old potatoes, not new ones. I never understood why. I loved both recipes, but I am at a loss for what wine to recommend here. Dealing with the cooked cabbage as a flavor component of both recipes presents additional pairing complexities. With my maternal grandma’s recipe, I’d opt here for a Roussanne to handle the meal. It’s a big, flavorful white with some qualities that I feel fairly confident will tame that cabbage somewhat and will not damage the meat and sauces. White Heron Cellars grows its own Roussanne grapes and has a bottle that should serve this meal quite nicely. That tomato sauce in grandma Saliby’s recipe might prefer a Sangiovese, but again, the cabbage might toss a curve ball at the wine. Cabbage is not easy to pair with wine. Meals in both homes, when the cabbage rolls were served, also had a large platter of perogies. Again, they differed in creation styles, but both were
wonderfully stuffed delights. In Dad’s family home they were stuffed with sausage that was probably kielbasa. In Mom’s family home they were stuffed with a combination of mashed potato, stewed onion and cheese. There were never any wines on the dinner tables in either house. Since there was meat in the stuffed cabbages, I always preferred perogies stuffed with the potato, onion, cheese filling. For those, too, I’m confident the White Heron Cellars Roussanne will work quite nicely. I’ve no idea what we’re having at our home this Christmas dinner, but I am looking forward to Christmas Eve’s meal with friends I look upon as family. Who knows, maybe there will be a mushroom soup? Merry Christmas, and a very Happy New Year to all of you. I want to add a note here: In 1987, both Dad and Mom Saliby visited us at Christmas. This was their first meeting in 37 years, and it went very well. In honor of the occasion Joanne recreated typical Christmas Eve and Christmas Day menus. She worked for several days, preparing each menu item from scratch each, with suggestions from me. It was a success; Mom and Dad were delighted. So were we. Thank you my dear. Say, don’t you still have those menus and recipes? Alex Saliby is a wine lover who spends far too much time reading about the grapes, the process of making wine and the wines themselves. He can be contacted at alex39@msn. com.
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