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Your locally-owned newspaper, serving North Bend and Snoqualmie, Washington

May 31, 2012 VOL. 4, NO. 22

Annual review Mount Si principal looks back at his first near-year. Page 2

Take a ride Local woman writes book about motorcycle life. Page 3

POW North Bend man recounts his time in the Hanoi Hilton. Page 6

Picture this High school students produce award-winning photos. Page 8

Track team has some top finishers Page 12

Weyerhaeuser mill annexation gets closer By Michele Mihalovich Snoqualmie’s annexation of the Weyerhaeuser mill site is a few steps closer to a reality. First, the City Council, in a 4-2 vote May 14, accepted the changes the King County Council made in April to the interlocal annexation agreement. The Snoqualmie City Council approved the language of the agreement in November, and then King County’s transportation committee changed some of the language to include restrictions to the DirtFish Rally driving school — on noise, lights, traffic, hours of operation and giving notice to neighbors when the school applies for a special-use permit. Snoqualmie councilmen Jeff McNichols and Charles Peterson voted against the annexation agreement, citing concerns about possible transportation improvements that might be

Season’s end Mount Si softball team wraps up season. Page 12 Prsrt Std U.S. Postage PAID Kent, WA Permit No. 71 POSTAL CUSTOMER

necessary if development does occur in the area. Peterson said he thought the city would probably spend more than it ever got back in revenue if the area were to be annexed. The second development was a May 9 ruling from the Growth Management Hearings Board for the Central Puget Sound Area, in a case filed by Your Snoqualmie Valley, a group opposed to the annexation, against the city of Snoqualmie, Snoqualmie Mill Ventures and Ultimate Rally (doing business as DirtFish Rally School). According to the board’s final decision and order, it was King County that proposed the city of Snoqualmie annex the area. The City Council approved new zoning for the annexation area, should the annexation be approved, in October with its ordinance 1086. The See MILL, Page 2

School district grapples with middle school plan By Sebastian Moraga If and when the Snoqualmie Valley School District returns to two middle schools, their similarities will outweigh their differences, Assistant Superintendent Don McConkey told parents May 22. The final word on how similar they will be — in activities, in classes, in curriculum — will depend on the budget for those years. “That may have an impact on what this will look like,” he said. McConkey and the three middle school principals preached patience when discussing the change, scheduled for 2013, when the Snoqualmie Middle School campus becomes a ninthgraders’ annex. That would return the district to two middle schools for

Remember the fallen

the first time since Twin Falls Middle School opened in 2008. “I have been through the changes, and now we are going to go through another change,” Chief Kanim Middle School Principal Kirk Dunckel said. “I know you are all on pins and needles, but we have been there before and we are going to handle it.” McConkey said that even with three middle schools’ worth of students attending two buildings, class sizes would not rise. “The number of staff at each building will keep class size at where it is today,” he said. Middle school class sizes now are just underneath 29 students per class, he added. “We’ve got great teachers See SCHOOL, Page 2

By Greg Farrar

John Lang, of North Bend, a member of Bugles Across America, performs ‘Taps’ as the public honors the nation’s veterans during Memorial Day ceremonies at Preston Cemetery. Boy Scouts and Cub Scouts from Troop 425, of Fall City, and Troop 466, of North Bend, and Girl Scouts from Troop 42385, of North Bend, performed color guard duties. Events sponsored by American Legion Post 79, of Snoqualmie, also took place in Fall City, North Bend and at the Snoqualmie Valley Veterans Memorial in downtown Snoqualmie.

Speed limit lowered for 12 days on Interstate 90 The Washington State Department of Transportation will lower the speed limit on westbound Interstate 90 in the Valley until June 10. Crews repaving the bridge deck on I-90 over state Route 18 will narrow lanes and shoulders on the interstate. The speed limit between milepost 28 and 25 will drop from 70 miles per hour to 60 mph. Westbound I-90 near state

Route 18 will have only two open lanes around the clock. Signs will notify drivers of the changes. Learn more at www.wsdot. Click on “Projects,” then click on the map of Washington under “Find Projects on a Map.” Click on the map and on the scrolling list of projects, look for “I-90-SR 18 Interchange Westbound Bridge Deck Rehabilitation.” Click on it once, then click on “Show Project Page.”

SnoValley Star


MAY 31, 2012

Mill From Page 1

By Sebastian Moraga

Mount Si High School Principal John Belcher chats with Mandy Shinn, head of security at the school. Just shy of a year after he took this job, Belcher said he has embedded himself in the Snoqualmie Valley, even buying a house in North Bend.

Mount Si Principal John Belcher looks back on challenging first year By Sebastian Moraga John Belcher, the youngest of three children, described his younger self as a people-pleaser. In his 10-month-old job as Mount Si High School principal, he can’t please everybody. Still, he tries. “I haven’t done my job if I haven’t gotten a thank-you or a handshake from an interaction,” he said. “Even if people aren’t hearing the decision they seek.” A Nathan Hale High School grad labeled a “coastie” while

living in Omak, Belcher has reinserted himself in the west side and embedded himself in the Snoqualmie Valley. A self-described mixture of country and city, Belcher said the Valley’s location lets him swim off both ends of the cultural pool. The Valley’s spot on the map also housed an early challenge for Belcher: Mount Si’s perception as the “hick” school, academically worse than its wealthier neighbors. “When I first heard of this

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job, I spent a lot of time researching the Valley,” he said. “And it looked great. But when I got here, I spent a lot of time talking to people who had a very bad perception of the school.” Changing the community’s image of Mount Si became crucial for Belcher. “A lot of what people talk See BELCHER, Page 3

School From Page 1 who care about kids and that’s not going to change when we are at two locations,” he added. Lastly, McConkey said the staffing of the two middle schools won’t be determined until winter 2013. “Lots of decisions will be determined by attendance boundaries,” he said. “That won’t happen until we know the outcome of the bond in February of 2013.” What that bond will ask for is still a work in progress. A school board work session May 24 tried to set a framework for the bond. Besides a third middle school, which McConkey said would open in fall 2015, board members offered other suggestions, like improving

area in question is currently zoned heavy industrial by King County. The preannexation zoning established by the ordinance states that of the 600 acres in the Mill Planning area, 25 acres outside the floodplain are zoned planned residential, the floodplain portion of the area is zoned planned commercial/ industrial and areas within the floodway are zoned open space. This will become effective if the annexation is approved. At the same Oct. 24 City Council meeting, the council approved a preannexation agreement with Snoqualmie Mill Ventures, Weyerhaeuser Real Estate Development Company and DirtFish Rally School, which leases property from Snoqualmie Mill Ventures. Resolution 1115 basically defers an annexation implementation plan because no development had been proposed. It also establishes that the rally school will be an approved use if the annexation goes forward. According to the ruling, city officials said it’s reasonable that planning for road and utility extension can be deferred until an actual development proposal comes before the council. The board agreed that deferral would have been a “logical strategy;” however, the city’s comprehensive plan requires an annexation implementation plan prior to an annexation, not after. The board found that the city did violate its own annexation policy. City attorney Pat Anderson said in a May 24 email that in response to the hearing board ruling, the ordinance and resolution were sent to the state Department of Commerce two

Mount Si High School. “Mount Si High School is not a comprehensive school,” school board member Scott Hodgins said. “It’s not a bad school, but there are improvements to be made.” Board member Geoff Doy said he had not spoken to anybody who thinks a bond asking for a third middle school would pass. “Whatever the bond is,” Doy said, “is going to be a hard sell.” Board member Carolyn Simpson agreed. “We represent the public,” she said. “And the public now is not convinced.” The district, Doy added, may well build classrooms that can’t afford to have a teacher. “I have a significant issue with our ability to afford another building,” he said. “Next year, we’ll have 14 teachers less than this year.” Instead, he said, when fresh-

weeks ago for the required 60-day review. Your Snoqualmie Valley, represented by Seattle attorney David Bricklin, also argued that the city violated State Environmental Policy Act laws that require an environmental impact study for annexations. In adopting Ordinance 1086, the city prepared a SEPA checklist and issued a Determination of Nonsignificance. Petitioners said the proposed zoning changes should have included a full environmental impact study, but the board disagreed, saying the city’s environmental determination was sufficient. “We prevailed on all the other GMA (Growth Management Act) issues, and we prevailed on (David) Bricklin’s challenge to our SEPA process, so it turns out our view was correct and all the Your Snoqualmie Valley’s huffing and puffing about SEPA was just so much hot air,” Anderson said in an email to the Star. A comprehensive plan amendment is being added that will allow a deferral of an annexation implementation plan, and that will go before the planning commission soon, so that the city will be in full compliance, Anderson said. He also said the city filed the Notice of Intention to Annex with the King County Boundary Review Board last week. Anderson said the only remaining step is for the City Council to either approve or reject the annexation ordinance itself, and that vote cannot occur until July because of the Boundary Review Board process. Michele Mihalovich: 392-6434, ext. 246, or Comment at

men are across the street at the annex, there might be room for improvements at Mount Si High School. While he said that there is “clearly” a benefit to a ninthgrade annex, Doy questioned the need of having freshmen away from the main high school campus. Board president Dan Popp said questions about the ninthgrade annex had been decided and answered. “To a great degree, I’m having a déjà vu,” Popp said. “We talked about this.” And odds are, they will talk some more, with another work session scheduled for 8 a.m. June 16 at the district offices. Snoqualmie Middle School parent Anna Sotelo praised the board’s discussion, calling it “brilliant.” “Looks like someone finally diluted the Kool-Aid,” she said.

SnoValley Star

MAY 31, 2012

Belcher From Page 2


Lynda Lahman (left) and Terry Lahman stand in front of Carhenge in Alliance, Neb., during the 2007 Iron Butt Rally.

Miles ridden and miles to go Local woman writes about love and long-distance motorcycle competitions By Michele Mihalovich Jumping into a new relationship is always risky. Jumping onto the back of your new boyfriend’s motorcycle increases the risk substantially. But as Lynda Lahman discovered, it can also solidify and strengthen the relationship. Lahman, 58, of Snoqualmie, just published, “Two-Up: Navigating a Relationship 1,000 Miles at a Time,” which delves into her then-budding romance with a man with a passion for long-distance motorcycle competitions. She’s a marriage and family therapist, and her now-husband, Terry Lahman, gave up a 17-year career at Microsoft to start his own digital forensics business.

When they met, their first marriages had ended, and they were pretty much getting back into the dating scene. The book reflects on the give-and-take in relationships, learning new personalities, facing and overcoming insecurities, and blending families. But it also offers a look into the little-known world of longdistance motorcycle competitions. Some races are geared toward a personal challenge, such as the SaddleSore (riding 1,000 miles in a 24-hour period) or the BunBurner GOLD (a 1,500-mile ride in 24 hours). But some pit motorcycle riders against each other, such as the Iron Butt Rally, an 11-day competition covering 11,000 miles that is, according to Lynda Lahman, considered the Olympics of the long-distance motorcycle competition world. See RIDE, Page 11

about are things that happened five years ago,” he said. “We are not the school we were one or two or three years ago.” People, he said, should consider all of the students reaching college or earning scholarship money when measuring the school’s quality. “There’s a positive growth going on,” he added. Along with successes came some low points. Longtime athletics secretary Valerie Meyers died of a heart condition in the winter. A sophomore committed suicide in the spring. Belcher said Meyers told him many times she disliked missing work. She missed the students. When Meyers died, those chats helped Belcher, he said. “She wanted people to carry on, she came to work every day,” she said. “That was enough for me to get up in front of people and say, ‘We support students and we carry on. That’s what Val wants.’” When a student committed suicide in April, Belcher said having a staff with experience in dealing with similar tragedies helped. “There’s a whole support system in place,” he said. “One thing the community doesn’t know that might be good to know is that we have a whole network of community members that came in to support us.” The student’s suicide fed people’s perception of Mount Si as an unsafe place for students. Belcher defended his school. “Safety is the product of two personalities,” he said. “I have never experienced kids who want a safe experience not to get it.” The hardest thing about safety and bullying, he said, is


to define them. Everybody has a definition. “Is it possible to have a perfect marriage? A perfect friendship? A perfect school?” he asked “That is the goal and we are working our tails off for that.” Belcher said he has seen less drama, conflict and fights at this school, which is four times the size of his last one. “The biggest source of conflict is the social networks,” he said. “People don’t say faceto-face the things they say on Facebook.” Social networks occupy time that the school cannot supervise, Belcher said, making it hard to resolve when parents come to the school asking for intervention. “A way to solve it,” he said, “is don’t let your kids do Facebook.” Belcher said he took the job with the expectation of opening a freshman campus. Then, he said, he arrived and had to justify it to people. “That was a lot of lost time

that could have been focused on the job at hand and planning for the future,” he said. “My No. 1 goal this year was to build relationships and it was kind of hard to build something that was kind of creating a divide.” Moreover, he came to the Valley believing it had made up its mind. “That’s what I mean by lost time,” he said. “Spending time away from students, guiding a community that I had thought had already made a decision.” Still, he does not regret the leap from Omak to Snoqualmie. It’s his job, his community and his home, having bought a house in North Bend. “This job has exceeded my expectations,” he said. “I am really impressed with the community support and wholeheartedly impressed with the staff and student body. This is by far the best.” Sebastian Moraga: 392-6434, ext. 221, or Comment at





Take a hard look at arena deal

Official apology for length of May 17 fireworks demonstration

This area has a long history of skepticism when it comes to building sports facilities. Let’s put that attitude to good use when reviewing the proposal for a new basketball — and possibly hockey — arena in Seattle. Though it may seem like a Seattle problem, the arena will have an impact here on the Eastside. In direct terms, the county is on the hook for up to $80 million, if certain conditions are met. Where is this big chunk of money supposed to come from? Aren’t officials about to ask us for a bond to build a juvenile justice center? Why is there money for a glorified basketball court, but not a justice center? A possibly large, indirect impact on the Eastside could be the effect of the arena on freight mobility. The Port of Seattle, of course, generates billions of dollars of commerce and provides tens of thousands of good, blue-collar jobs. Any arena must not disrupt port operations. Though a traffic study says it shouldn’t be a problem, caution is warranted. If projections are off, and shippers find their goods delayed by sports fans, they’ll send their boats to other places. And the tax revenue projections must be scrutinized. Economists who study arenas often find that sales taxes generated by arenas are not “new money.” Sure, you pay sales taxes on that hot dog and soda, but that usually means one fewer hot dog and soda bought at a restaurant. The stadium doesn’t mean people suddenly have a larger budget for entertainment; it means that the dollars are doled out in different places. All that said, there is a lot to like about the proposal. It seems to offer more protections for the public than some past arena proposals. Private money will provide the lion’s share of the financing. It will create jobs, first in construction and then in operations. It would feel good to have the Sonics back. And of course, every one of the thousands of screaming fans is also a taxpayer. Just don’t let the excitement of getting to see the Sonics play override protecting the county’s fiscal interests.

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The Snoqualmie Fireworks Supply Co. would like to issue a formal apology for the length of the product demonstration, which occurred the evening of May 17. The company had originally estimated a start time of 7:45 p.m., but the weather pushed the start time closer to 9 p.m., which made the end time much later than we had anticipated. The purpose of the demonstration was in part to film the products’ display in order to better serve our customers. Having film clips detailing the fireworks will allow our customers to see products in action prior to purchasing, rather than lighting the fireworks off during the weeks the stand is open. We will take into consideration the complaints we received for any future product demonstrations. We aim to please our customers while being good neighbors, and we sincerely apologize for any irritation some may have experienced from the product demonstration.

MAY 31, 2012

We would like to specifically thank the city of Snoqualmie’s police and fire departments for being on hand to assist and support Snoqualmie Fireworks Supply Co.’s efforts in making sure the event was as safe as possible. Jaime Martin, Snoqualmie Tribe administrative services officer

Public meetings From sidewalk installation projects to snow removal to property tax collection, decisions made by officials at a local level have the potential to impact your daily life. Get involved. Provide feedback. Make a difference. Let leaders know what’s on your mind to shape a better Snoqualmie Valley at these meetings:

North Bend Finance and Administration Committee, 4 p.m. June 5 at City Hall, 211 Main Ave N. City Council, 7 p.m. June 5, Mount Si Senior Center, 411 Main Ave. S.

Snoqualmie Public Safety Committee, 5 p.m. May 31, Snoqualmie Fire Station, 37600 S.E. Snoqualmie Parkway

Share your views Citizens can make a difference by contacting their elected representatives.

Snoqualmie Valley School Board

President Dan Popp, District 5, Vice President Scott Hodgins, District 1, Carolyn Simpson, District 3, Marci Busby, District 4, Geoff Doy, District 2, Write to the School Board at Snoqualmie Valley School Board, P.O. Box 400, Snoqualmie, WA 98065. Call 831-8000.

Home Country

What in the world is as dumb as a rock? By Slim Randles “Ain’t nothing in the world dumber’n a horse,” said Dud, pulling up his chair at the Mule Barn truck stop’s philosophy counter. “I swear they have just enough brains to walk and breathe at the same time.” Steve, the full-time professional cowboy of the outfit, looked over at Dud, who was part-time at best. “Ol’ Henry scrape you off under a limb, Dud?” “How could you tell?” “It must be that bark print across the front of your shirt,” said Doc. “I deal with horses every day,” Steve said, “and I can sympathize with you, but you’re wrong. The dumbest animal in the world is a turkey.” “Sheep,” said Doc. “My wife’s cat,” said Herb. We all looked at him. “Well, he is,” Herb said. “Scientifically speaking, though,” said Steve, “the intelligence quotient of the turkey is just slightly above that of the earthworm. They only reason they’re smart enough to mate with each other is that no one

else wants the job.” Doc, who has more degrees than a thermometer, said, “Nope. It’s sheep. Why, Slim Randles they’re so Columnist dumb …” “Seven Years has ‘em beat,” said Herb, decisively. “Seven Years?” “My wife’s cat. Seven Years.

Ever wonder how he got named?” No one encouraged him. “He attacked a cat in a mirror and broke it,” Herb said. “The cat?” “The mirror.” “Well,” Steve said, “that’s pretty dumb.” Herb sipped his coffee. “Only thing dumber’n Seven Years is a flat, brown rock.” Need a good book? Check out what’s new at

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MAY 31, 2012

SnoValley Star




MAY 31, 2012

Snoqualmie Valley resident looks back at time inside Hanoi Hilton By Sebastian Moraga The interrogator Joseph Crecca nicknamed “The Agent” began speaking. Speaking of how American Air Force pilots like Crecca had attacked the Vietnamese. How Vietnamese blood had been shed. And how the Vietnamese were “determined to fight and win.” Then, American F-105 planes flew above their heads. And the speech screeched to a halt. Unlike The Agent, who fled, screaming. Crecca, a Valley resident for 12 years, remembers and laughs. Some villain, he thought. “People ask me what kept me going,” said Crecca, a Vietnam prisoner of war for six years who spent three months at the camp known as the Hanoi Hilton. “I had four pillars: faith in God, country, family and self.” He also had a key fifth pillar: sense of humor. A mechanical engineer and the son of Italian-Americans, Crecca inherited the brains and sense of humor from his folks. Both would come in handy in Southeast Asia. “We were in survival school in the Philippines, and they had these locals called Negritos,” he recalled. “And we were told to

hide. If the Negritos found you, they would get a 100-pound bag of rice for each of us.” Advantage, Negritos. They found them all and collected 13,000-plus pounds of rice. “You got city boys in the jungle with the jungle boys,” said Crecca, who had attended college in Newark, N.J. “They knew where to go, they knew where we would hide.” Shot out of the sky Crecca arrived in Da Nang, South Vietnam, on Aug. 14, 1966. One hundred days later, a Soviet surface-to-air missile shot down his F-4C Phantom. From the back seat and over the shoulders of pilot Scotty Wilson, Crecca could see things were serious. “All I could see were the bad lights, the amber and the red ones,” he said. The engine was on fire, as well. Crecca said he thought, “It’s all over,” but then Wilson yelled, “Get out!” before disappearing. When his chute opened, Crecca could see the wreckage below and later the locals waiting. He also saw Wilson. “I knew something was

wrong. His head was down and his arms were down,” Crecca said. When Wilson’s chute had opened, a second missile had hit him. Crecca saluted an unconscious Wilson one last time and fell among peasants who beat him, stripped him down and held him captive for hours in wintry weather before sending him bound and blindfolded to Hanoi. “That’s when the fun and games began,” he said. Building a mental university At the Hilton’s main prison, Hoa Lo, he disoriented and infuriated his captors with oneliners. Some of the captors were interested in the speed of an F-4. “I would tell them it was much faster than the MiG 21,” Crecca said. They roped him, neck to wrist to ankles, and slammed his body against the ground. The second time, Crecca realized it was on purpose, so he took the slams with different shoulders, to minimize the damage. After the torture and the interrogations stopped, they moved him to a solitary room

By Sebastian Moraga

Joseph Crecca holds a photocopy of one of the notebooks he used to teach math, physics, and automotive theory and practice to his fellow prisoners of war in Hanoi. About one-third of the prisoners taught something, and they re-nicknamed their prison Hanoi University. for eight months. “I realized I had nobody to talk to, nothing to read,” he said. “I realized I had to keep myself busy. I would learn the presidents in order, then the states alphabetically, then the capitals.”

Then he would solve physics problems in his head. “It took me two weeks to make it through the 37 steps in my head” of the problem, he said. See POW, Page 7

Busy Mount Si Senior Center is re-emerging and thriving By Sebastian Moraga

steep. Longtime program direcPaid human membership, tor Janet Fosness was fired and way up. Unpaid rat membership, replaced by Paula Edwards. And way down. with gas prices up, the budget It’s life at the Mount Si Senior got a little slimmer. Center, after six months under “I get sick to my stomach the direction of BJ Libby. when I sign a check for $8,000 “We had mice and rats,” she to pay for the gas that we use said of her first days at the helm. in our buses,” she said. “We “I set the traps are looking for “I’ve had those days myself.” ways to reduce A halfthat.” when I say, ‘What the year later, she The center’s heck am I doing here? declares her floors need “a center’s fourTLC,” she Then a senior will pop in little legged guests said, and the a thing of the center needs an and give me a hug.” past. The rats ADA-compliant are dead, she — BJ Libby front door and said, but the Senior center director new windows. center has come Challenges alive. aside, she said, Waltz lessons, two-step lesthe seniors motivate and inspire sons, exercise groups, field trips, her. even a talent show and a golf “I’ve had those days when I tournament are either happensay, ‘What the heck am I doing ing or in the works for the cenhere?’” she said. “Then a senior ter. will pop in and give me a hug.” “We’re moving forward,” Libby said that she found her Libby said. second passion at the center. It has not always been easy, Center members seem to agree she said. The learning curve was with her.

By Sebastian Moraga

BJ Libby, the director of the Mount Si Senior Center, sits inside her renovated and repainted office. After six months as its leader, Libby said the center is a bustling, happy place, with plenty of activities for the community inside and outside its walls. O.J. Hjelt said the center is the “best ever” since Libby took over. Member Sandra Guthrie

agreed, highlighting the center’s friendly atmosphere. Hjelt, Libby said, told her the

center had a lot of talent within See LIBBY, Page 7

SnoValley Star

MAY 31, 2012



From Page 6

From Page 6

its walls. Libby said she agreed with him. Before they knew it, a talent show was born. The July 21 show will have as its closing number a rap prepared by Chuck Smith, of school-bus-safety-song fame, and performed by the seniors. The event will be open to the public. “It’s going to be called the Rockin’, Swingin’ Singin’ seniors,’” Libby said. The business side also has some important days ahead, the 2013-15 transportation grant from the state is out in August. Other dates are just as important, she said. On Sept. 28, an idea of Libby’s since before she took over the center will occur: a fundraising golf tournament. The center is still looking for sponsorships. “We need money,” she said. “We need it to get the building up to speed.” Even if the coffers are light, Libby said, things will keep happening. An attorney will give a lecture about avoiding computer scams, the King County Sheriff’s Office will send someone to talk about home safety and answering or not answering the door, and a pertussis (whooping cough) vaccination clinic might find its way to 411 Main Ave. S. All in the name of keeping our eldest citizens active, happy and safe. “I have a really deep bond and connection with the seniors,” Libby said. “I work for them.”

“When I had something to write with, it took me three weeks.” After eight months, he got roommates. So he started memorizing the names and ranks of his roommates. At one point, he knew 252. He invented nicknames for the other guys. The Agent for the travel agent-wannabe, Gyro Gearloose for the nutty one, Spot for the one with the scar, Dilligaf for the one with the emotionless face, Dum-Dum for the dimwitted captor, Dr. StrangeGlove for the camp medic who only wore one. After the Vietnamese herded the POWs in groups of 45 to 50, Crecca and others began teaching the group. Physics, math, calculus, social studies, auto mechanics. Even cuts of meat, wine selection and classical music, without instruments. “We whistled and hummed,” he said, adding that one-third of the group taught something. Using paper and a stolen ballpoint refill, Crecca wrote math and physics books. He drew engines, pistons, pumps, with no room for error. The Hanoi Hilton carried no WiteOut in those days. Sometimes, he would write on the back of transmissions, “Made in Italy.” Students used a broken roof tile as chalk. With all of the erasings, the floor became “cleaner than it had been in 100 years,” Crecca said. He had one math textbook, in Russian. He would try a problem, check the answer and

Sebastian Moraga: 392-6434, ext. 221, or Comment at

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Scholarship created in former POW’s name Joseph Crecca’s class at Bloomfield High School has created a scholarship in his honor, another accolade for one of the class’ most distinguished alumni. “I consider him our hometown hero for what he did for our country,” said Marion Reynolds Leonard, a member of the class. Scholarships will give $500 to a student with a record of outstanding academic achievement and a commitment to higher education, she said. The first recipient will be Nicole Couto, a Bloomfield High student bound for Montclair State University in New Jersey. The scholarship shows the class of 1958 cares about the younger generations, Reynolds Leonard said, and wants to see them succeed. “In order to succeed, you have to have higher education and that goes right along with Joe’s philosophy,” she said. “You gotta keep learning.” Crecca praised his former classmates, calling the class of 1958 “absolutely unique.” “They have a luncheon every year, we went on a cruise,” he said. “You will never find another class like this one.” slowly decipher the language. ‘Out of SAM range’ He knew little about America anymore, mostly from Vietnamese magazines photos of American pilots and use of terms like “B-52.” That meant the fight continued. Then, in February 1973, his fight ended. “I am not a fatalist, but I didn’t allow myself to think it was over until it was over,” he said. His excitement grew with each movement of his plane taking off for America. But he had not been in a plane in five years, and the last trip remained fresh in his memory. He did not let himself relax until the plane was 25 miles away from the coast. “Because then we were out of SAM range, and I felt a little bit better,” he said with a wink.





Even at home, the Vietnam milestones continued for Crecca. Twenty years to the day they got shot down, in 1986, he eulogized the remains of Scotty Wilson, finally repatriated. And this year, he had a reunion with former fellow POWs in Arizona. Still, a return to Southeast Asia is out of the question for him. “Why would I waste good vacation money on a place with constant power failures, where the rats were the size of cats?”

he said, while wearing a baseball cap with the name of his squadron from 1967. Determined to fight and win? Memories abound, good ones and the other kind. Just like back then, he relies on humor. “It was a real boon to being there,” he said. “If you maintained your sense of humor, you could use it to help you get through the very harsh situation you were in. It was like the oil that lubricated the bearings.” His bearings are well-lubricated and all accounted for. He followed his career in the Air Force with years as a commercial pilot, before retiring in 2005. “I do nothing now,” he said, before reconsidering. “Wait, I talk to journalists.” Long since remarried (“you have to write, ‘he remarried the same year I was pooping my diapers,’”) he has rebuilt his life, first in Bellevue and then in North Bend, where he moved to escape urban sprawl. These days, the only agents he talks to are the travel kind. When they give speeches, they don’t pause in fear of a 737 flying over. “‘Aaaaa! American airplanes!’ he screamed,” Crecca remembered with a grin. “Determined to fight and win, my ass.”

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Mount Si High School photogs get state honors By Sebastian Moraga Rachel Mallasch thought the picture she took two years ago from the top of the Koln Dome in Germany was no good. As an afterthought, she turned it in to her Mount Si High School photography teacher James Gibowski. He disagreed with her and turned the photo in to a statewide high school photography contest.

The photo was picked among the contest’s top landscape photos, one of eight Mount Si High School students honored in five categories. “I’m really excited,” she said. “I’m totally surprised. I didn’t think that photo would go through at all.” A photographer since seventh grade, Mallasch, a sophomore, See PHOTOS, Page 9

By Natalie Werner

By Jonathan Harrington

By Maura Murphy

By Journie Kirdain

MAY 31, 2012

SnoValley Star

MAY 31, 2012


Fundraiser for North Bend-based burn camp is set for June 2 By Sebastian Moraga The clock is ticking for Camp Eyabsut. The annual North Bend retreat for children who have suffered third-degree burns (its name means “to rise above anything”) is safe for this year, but next year is in danger. “We found out a few weeks ago that the funding got cut,”

said Leslie Dahline, whose husband volunteers at the camp. For this year’s camp, scheduled for mid July, the Northwest Council of Firefighters picked up the sponsorship. Dahline said this year’s camp is a certainty, but everything after that is not. Attendance has lowered at the camps, which may actually be good news, she said. “I think the reason is word

is getting out there about burn prevention education,” she added. Still, children coming from all across the Northwest depend on the camp, Leslie’s daughter Avery wrote in an email. So the push for money for the 2013 camp is on. Cheerleaders including Avery and firefighters will stand in front of the North Bend QFC,

460 E. North Bend Way, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. June 2 collecting donations and selling tickets for a special showing of “Men In Black 3” at 5 p.m. June 3 at the North Bend Theatre, 125 Bendigo Blvd. A website — — is also accepting donations. All for a worthy endeavor, Dahline said.

“We have seen these children and how happy they are and how uninhibited they are while at this camp,” she said. “They get a new sense of self and they feel normal for the first time and they take that with them.”

way through high school. She called Gibowski awesome and the reason she was able to take such a photo.

“Now I can see how hard it is,” she said of photography, “and how much emotion you can get in a photo.”

Sebastian Moraga: 392-6434, ext. 221, or Comment at

By Avery Dahline

By Rachel Mallasch

By Sam Egan

Photos From Page 8 traveled to Europe with her family two years ago, and she took the picture from atop the dome of the cathedral where the Three Wise Men are said to be buried. “I take my camera with me wherever I go,” she said. This is Mallasch’s second photography award. A Valley contest in January awarded a photo she took of a relative. This is the first statewide award, and all for a photo that still does not fully please her. “I definitely like it,” she said. “It’s just not my best photo.” Students Jonathan Harrington and Natalie Werner received Select Finalist honors, reserved

for fewer than 1 percent of all of the pictures entered per category. Maura Murphy, Alex Pease, Journie Kirdain, Sam Egan, Avery Dahline and Mallasch received Select awards, reserved for fewer than 10 percent per category. Gibowski posted the results on the school’s website. A first-year photographer, Dahline turned in a picture she took of a penguin half underwater. “I look at it as two ways of living,” she said. “It’s interesting that they can live both on land and in water.” She took the picture during a trip with her grandma to Seattle’s Woodland Park Zoo. Dahline said the picture was the trip’s most unusual one. The penguin, she said, seemed to stare straight at her while blowing bubbles.

By Alex Pease She never thought of photography as art, Dahline said, until she took Gibowski’s class. Now she wants to take photos all the


SnoValley Star

Last day on the job

MAY 31, 2012

PTSA recognizes Joel Aune


By Sebastian Moraga

Snoqualmie Valley School Board president Dan Popp shakes hands with Mount Si High School senior Chace Carlson, one of two school representatives to the board this year. Board members praised Carlson, whose tenure at the board ends with his June 8 graduation. He will attend Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Prescott, Ariz.

Snoqualmie Valley PTSA Council president Liz Piekarczyk presented Snoqualmie Valley Schools Superintendent Joel Aune with the 2012 Outstanding Educator Award May 22. Piekarczyk mentioned Aune’s leadership of the district through a budget crunch, Mount Si High School’s SAT scores, and the three consecutive years district schools have won Washington Achievement Awards as reasons for his award.

Snoqualmie Valley Hospital earns high stroke care category Snoqualmie Valley Hospital earned a Level 2 Cardiac Care and a Level 3 Stroke Care category under the state’s new care coordination system. At those levels, emergency departments are required to have protocols in place and meet several performance goals. Goals include having EKGs completed within 10 minutes and transferring to a higher level

facility for a heart attack within a half-hour. Hospitals must have a full range of specialists, like neurosurgeons, and highly sophisticated equipment available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to earn Level 1 status. “Snoqualmie Valley Hospital has effectively developed strong collaborative relationships with area hospitals,” Director of Nursing Rachel Weber said in a press release, “to assure that patients receive the right care at the right time regardless of where that care occurs.”

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MAY 31, 2012

Police blotter North Bend Drunken driving At 6 p.m. May 14, a police officer observed a Ford Escort, without a front license plate or bumper, traveling westbound on North Bend Way. The officer stopped the vehicle and smelled alcohol on the driver’s breath. John Michael Rosenlund, 41, of North Bend, failed field sobriety tests. The passenger in the car told the police officer that he was too drunk to realize Rosenlund was too drunk to drive. Rosenlund was arrested for drunk driving.

All aboard! A city worker found a 29-year-old North Bend man sleeping at the train depot at 8:45 a.m. May 14. It was later determined that the man was wanted on a thirddegree theft warrant. He was booked into the Issaquah Jail.

Fired and banned An Ace Hardware manager reported to police at 9:40 a.m. May 11 that a longtime employee had been stealing from the store. The manager and store owner viewed surveillance video, which showed the employee conducting fraudulent returns and taking money from the store safe. When confronted, the employee admitted to $6,000 worth of thefts since January. The owner did not wish to press charges, preferring to handling it in-store. But he did ban the employee from the store for one year.

Fire calls from Eastside Fire & Rescue in North Bend At 12:57 p.m. May 18, a fire engine responded to a vehicle fire on Interstate 90. At 2:36 p.m. May 18, a fire engine responded to an illegal fire in the 16000 block of Cedar Falls Road Southeast. At 9:52 p.m. May 19, three fire engines responded to a vehicle accident with no injuries in the 7900 block of North Fork Road Southeast. At 12:40 p.m. May 23, nine fire engines responded to a structure fire in the 7700 block of 376th Avenue Southeast near Snoqualmie. Deputy Chief Bud Backer said the occupants had extinguished most of the fire in the attached garage using portable fire extinguishers. Snoqualmie Battalion 281 was the first on scene and cancelled all of the other fire trucks. The Star publishes names of those arrested for DUI and those charged with felony crimes. Information comes directly from local police reports.

Reward offered in hit-and-run Interstate 90 overpass collision Damage from the hit-and-run collision of a truck to an eastbound Interstate 90 overpass at milepost 45 is estimated at $1.5 million. A reward of up to $1,000 for information leading to an arrest is being offered by Crime Stoppers, according to a press release from the Washington State Patrol. At the beginning of April, Washington State Patrol detec-

Ride From Page 3 Lynda said that before she got too serious about the softspoken man with the buttnumbing hobby, she needed to see if she’d even enjoy riding with him during the competitions. Turns out she did love it and felt like a part of the team, even on the back of the bike, which is what Two Up refers to in competitions. The last part of the book


tives were contacted by an off-duty employee and advised of damage to the eastbound Interstate 90 underpass at milepost 45. An overheight load traveling in the northbound lane underneath I-90 had struck the overpass girder. Several areas of broken concrete and exposed steel rebar were visible on the overpass.  Concrete pieces with paint transferred from the impact with the overpass were collected and the paint is being analyzed, which should provide valuable information about the manufacturer of the equipment that

struck the overpass, according to the press release. Anyone with potential information about the damage or overheight loads that may have been traveling in that area of I-90 at the end of March or early April are urged to call in. If you know who that driver is, or where the truck is now, call Crime Stoppers at 800-222TIPS toll free. You must call the Crime Stoppers hotline with your tip to be eligible to receive the cash reward for information leading to an arrest.

describes how she and Peter prepared for and competed in the 2007 IBR. The couple battled against 96 other riders who competed for bonus points. At least 190,000 points were necessary, and riders were given possible “assignments” to earn those points. The assignments could be earned by taking a photo of the rider in front of a certain landmark in South America, or a lighthouse in Canada or somewhere in Alaska. Riders had to produce receipts from certain towns or identify,

with a photo, how many bolts were in mile marker sign 177 on Highway 191. All of the riders began and ended at a hotel in St. Louis, Mo. Lynda said their route for bonus points took them from Missouri to West Virginia, Key West (Fla.), New Orleans, Kansas, Colorado, California, Utah and back to St. Louis. Only 64 motorcycle riders finished the competition. Were the Lahmans one of them? You’ll have to read the book, available at or


Snoqualmie Hit and run A caller reported at 8 p.m. May 22 that someone had hit the trailer hitch ball on his/ her vehicle in the 7700 block of Center Boulevard Southeast and then apparently drove away.

On the job A caller reported at 10 a.m. May 24 that there were two males sitting in a van and they had been there a while. Police spoke with the subjects, who said they were waiting for a contractor to show up.


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MAY 31, 2012

Bradly Stevens wins state javelin crown 4 inches at districts. “Two hundred is like a barrier It was only a matter of time. that’s really hard for some kids Bradly Stevens, the youngest to break,” he said. “Once you of five current or former javelin break that barrier, you can jump throwers in his family, up and gain some disbecame the first to grasp tance. It’s when you something his kin have really start to get a been chasing since the feel for how it flies.” mid-1980s: a state chamStevens said that pionship. other than Matt “It feels like a dream Gilbert, the level of come true,” said Stevens, competition was kind who broke the Mount of low. Gilbert, a Si High School javelin Bellevue High School record for the fourth standout, finished time this year at the state Bradly Stevens second at 196 feet. meet, with a throw meaMount Si’s athletes sured at 205 feet, 10 inches. at the state meet struggled but Winning state, he said, has also showed promise for the been the goal since day one. years to come. The boys finished “And it finally happened,“ he in a tie for 23rd; the girls did added. not place in team scores. With former thrower Dad, Junior Jimbo Davis finished and current throwers brother tied for seventh in the pole vault Kyle and sister Leslie watching, with 13 feet. Stevens broke the 200-foot mark “Jimbo did all right,” said for the second consecutive tournament. He threw for 202 feet, See TRACK, Page 13 By Sebastian Moraga

By Greg Farrar

Kolton Auxier, Mount Si High School senior, puts the shot for 50 feet, 1 1/4 inches, in this round of competition May 26 during the 3A state track and field championships in Tacoma. The throw was good enough for a 10th-place finish.

Mount Si softball team ends year in fifth place at state tournament By Michele Mihalovich

By Greg Farrar

Kendra Lee, Mount Si High School senior, pitches to retire the side during the second inning against Kamiakin High School in the first round of the state 3A fastpitch championships May 25 in Lacey.

Talk about pressure. The fate of whether the Mount Si High School softball team could muster enough momentum to go forward in the state championship brackets rested entirely on sophomore Jenny Carroll. It was the seventh inning and Mount Si was down by four runs. There were two outs and Carroll had already racked up two strikes against Kamiakin High School pitcher Lindsey Kamphuis. But Rachael Picchena was on third base, ready to cross home plate for Mount Si’s first run of the game. Kamphuis let go of the pitch and Carroll smacked nothing but air, ending the Wildcats’ hope of going forward at the Regional Athletic Complex in Lacey on May 25. If it’s any consolation, Mount Si had a pretty good showing against the Kamiakin Braves out of Kennewick, which went home

with the state 3A title, Coach Larry White said. “Oh man, we were so close,” he said. “They really played a good game against them.” After that game with Kamiakin, Mount Si would face off against two more teams that day, and would prevail. They beat Peninsula, 4-3, and Bonney Lake, 10-2. The next day, Mount Si saw another win, beating Bainbridge, 8-5, which then led them to a familiar rival … the Juanita Rebels. The Rebels clinched the KingCo season 3A season title, with Mount Si right behind them. Mount Si ended up losing against Juanita, 11-1, in the loser-out game. Only four teams leave with a trophy at the state championship: Everett went home with a second-place spot, Wilson took third and Juanita rounded it out with a fourth-place title. While Mount Si didn’t go See SOFTBALL, Page 13

MAY 31, 2012

MSHS to host soccer camps Wildcat Attack camps return to Mount Si High School this summer with three sessions to prepare young players for the next levels of soccer. The camp welcomes boys and girls ages 5-13 to Snoqualmie Middle School from 9-11:30 a.m. Sessions will occur June 25-28, and July 9-12 and 16-19. Sessions are $95 each, with a $10 discount for each additional family member.

SnoValley Star Children participating will receive individualized coaching from Mount Si coaches, and former and current Wildcat soccer players. They will also receive a Wildcat Attack Camp T-shirt. Children will learn several aspects of the game, including foot skills, positional play and team-building exercises. Get a copy of the registration brochure by emailing

By Greg Farrar

Lauren Smith, Mount Si High School junior center fielder, dives and slides to catch a fly ball to put out Kamiakin High School batter Reily Thorington and end the second inning, during the first round of the state 3A fastpitch championships May 25 in Lacey.

Softball From Page 12 home with a trophy, White said he couldn’t be more excited about the Wildcats’ fifth-place finish. Mount Si ended the overall season with an impressive 20 wins, and will be losing only two seniors from this year’s team. Senior Maura Murphy sat out most of the season due to medical problems. Kendra Lee was the starting pitcher for most of Mount Si’s games. White said freshman pitcher Paige Wetherbee looks like she’ll move into

Track From Page 12 Gregg Meyers, the boys’ head coach, who had to endure confusion with the jumps when judges thought the bar had been left at 13 feet for too long. “We said, ‘No, we’ve seen the bar go up every time,’” Meyers said he and other coaches responded. Judges prevailed and a stack of scores were erased. Mount Si and Liberty High School might file a complaint, Meyers added. Senior Kolton Auxier finished 10th in the shot put with 50 feet, 1.25 inches. “He was just a little off,” Meyers said of Auxier, “but he’s still coming back from back surgery.” The team is young, the talent is

that spot seamlessly. But the rest of the team also had skills and experience that they’ll bring to the 2013 Wildcats team, without leaving the team vulnerable. With the experience of incoming seniors and juniors, White said, “the bar has been set really high.” He said his goal for next season would be to work on improving the team’s consistency and bunting balls. “With another year of experience, this team could be incredible, and I’m really looking forward to maybe getting an even better showing than fifth place next year,” White said. Michele Mihalovich: 392-6434, ext. 246, or editor@ Comment at

high, and the future is bright. Next year, Meyers said, should be another good building year for the Wildcat boys. Among the girls, Lexi Swanson tied for 10th in the pole vault, with 9 feet, 6 inches. Swanson was the girl team’s only senior. “We’re a young team,” girls head coach Dave Clifford said. “Hopefully next year we’ll get some girls back and get some medals.” That’s the plan for Stevens, too. That, and to keep breaking records. The next one in his sights is the state meet record, set in 2009 by Bellevue’s Robert Hintz, who is now at Stanford. “I wanted to break it but I never got around to that,” he said. “Two hundred and 11 feet. I guess I’ll have to do that next year.” Sebastian Moraga: 392-6434, ext. 221, or smoraga@ Comment at


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North Bend Library The following events take place at the North Bend Library, 115 E. Fourth St. q Mount Si Artists Guild exhibit, through June 15. Themes are “Summer is Coming,” and “Summer in the Valley.” All ages are welcome during library hours. q Snoqualmie Valley Chess Club, 7 p.m. Thursdays. Learn to play chess or get a game going; all ages/skill levels welcome. q Study Zone, 4 p.m., May 31, June 7; 3 p.m. June 5; 7 p.m. June 6; free tutoring for grades K-12 q Game On! 3 p.m. June 1; play Xbox 306, PlayStation and Nintendo, “Guitar Hero” and “Dance Dance Revolution;” board games and snacks available q eReader assistance, 6 p.m. June 4. Learn how to download books to your eReader or computer. Adults only. q English as a second language classes, 6:30 p.m. June 4. Learn English grammar, reading, writing and conversational skills. q First Tuesday Book Club, 7 p.m. June 5. Come discuss “Palace Walk,” by Naguib Mahfouz. q Preschool Story Time, 10:30 a.m. June 5; ages 3-6 with adult, siblings welcome q Toddler Story Time, 9:30 a.m. June 5; ages 2-3 with adult q One-on-one Computer Assistance, 1 p.m. June 6; for adults q Pajamarama Story Time, 6:30 p.m. June 6; all young children welcome with adult q Special Needs Story Time, 10 a.m. June 9; stories, activities and songs designed for children with special needs; target ages 3-6 years old; children of all ages and abilities welcome q Snoqualmie Valley Writers Work Group, 3 p.m. June 10. Email snovalleywrites@ for assignment before class. Adults only.

Snoqualmie Library The following events take place at the Snoqualmie Library, 7824 Center Blvd. S.E. q Pajama Story Times, 7 p.m. May 31. All young children welcome with adult. Wear your PJs if you like. q EReader Assistance, 11 a.m. May 31, June 7, 14. Learn how to download library eBooks to your eReader or computer. q Study Zone, 3 p.m. June 5, 12; free tutoring for grades K-12 q Preschool Story Times, 10:30 a.m. June 6, ages 3-6 with adult q Young Toddler Story Times, 9:30 a.m. June 6; ages 6-24 months with adult q “Purl One, Listen Too,” 1 p.m. June 7. Learn new stitch-


Help him out


Churches q River Outreach seeks donation of coats, pants, sweatshirts, long underwear, hats, gloves, socks and anything that may help homeless people stay warm. Call 830-1654 or 681-7380. q St. Clare Episcopal Church is collecting cereal for the Mount Si Helping Hand Food Bank. People wanting to donate money instead may write a check to the food bank, P.O. Box 2464, North Bend, WA 98045. q Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic Church seeks to collect tarps, candles, duct tape, flashlights, toilet paper, toiletries, hats, gloves, ropes and scarves for the homeless. Bring donations to the church’s parish hall, 39025 S.E. Alpha St., Snoqualmie.

Volunteer opportunities q The Boeing Classic golf tournament seeks volunteers for its 2012 edition. Tournament


1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30

A fundraising dinner and auction for cancer-stricken local resident Smoky Van Buskirk is at 6 p.m. June 2 at the Moose Lodge, 108 N. Sidney St., North Bend. The event starts with dinner and a silent auction, while a live auction starts at 7:30 p.m. Learn more by calling Ann Barker at 360-631-2245 or Cheryl Weber at 891-1901. es, listen to new books, talk about knitting and meet new friends. For adults. q Spanish/English Story Time, 10:30 a.m. June 9; all are welcome to enjoy stories songs and fun activities in both languages

MAY 31, 2012

will occur Aug. 20-26 at TPC Snoqualmie Ridge. Volunteers will receive two golf shirts, a jacket, headwear, admission passes, meal vouchers and more. Find further details are at q Encompass is seeking volunteers to help with landscape and maintenance at the downtown North Bend and Boalch Avenue locations along with office help. This can be a weekly or monthly commitment. Email or call 888-2777. q The Snoqualmie Sister Cities Association invites community members to join a newly formed group to support Snoqualmie’s new sister city, Chaclacayo, Peru. The association has developed a close relationship with sister city Gangjin, South Korea, which more than 30 residents have visited in the past four years. Email maryrcorcoran@ or call 503-1813. q The Mount Si Helping Hand Food Bank is looking for volunteers to help unload food at noon Mondays, sort food at 9 a.m. Tuesdays or pass out food on Wednesdays. Call 888-0096. q The Elk Management Group invites the community to participate in elk collaring,

telemetry and habitat improvement projects in the Upper Snoqualmie Valley. Project orientation meetings are at 6 p.m. the third Monday of the month at the U.S. Forest Service Conference Room, behind the Forest Service office, 130 Thrasher Ave. Email research@ q Snoqualmie Valley Hospital is accepting applications for ages 16 or older to volunteer in various departments of the hospital. Email to arrange an interview. q The Senior Services Transportation Program needs volunteers to drive seniors around North Bend and Snoqualmie. Car required. Mileage reimbursement and supplemental liability insurance are offered. Call 206-748-7588 or 800-282-5815 toll free, or email Apply at q The Mount Si Senior Center needs volunteers for sorting and sales in the thrift store, reception and class instruction. The center is at 411 Main Ave. S., North Bend. Call 888-3434. q Hopelink in Snoqualmie Valley seeks volunteers for a variety of tasks. Volunteers must be at least 16. Go to or call 869-6000. q AdoptAPark is a program for Snoqualmie residents to improve public parks and trails. An application and one-year commitment are required. Call 831-5784. q Study Zone tutors are needed for all grade levels to give students the homework help they need. Two-hour weekly commitment or substitutes wanted. Study Zone is a free service of the King County Library System. Call 369-3312.

Classes q Butterfly Magic ballet lessons at Si View Community Center, 400 S.E. Orchard Drive, North Bend, 10:45-11:45 a.m. Wednesdays, through June 6, $42, for ages 3-6 q “Tween Yoga” at Si View Community Center, 4:30 p.m. Thursdays through June 7, $50 fee, ages 9-13 q Swimming lessons at Si View Community Center, Tuesdays and Thursdays, $70. More swimming lessons

are coming. Learn more at q “Nutrition Made Easy,” 7 p.m. Wednesdays through June 20 at Si View Community Center. This workshop is meant to inspire people to eat real whole foods. Supply fee of $5 is payable to the instructor. Registration fee $60. Adults only. Call 831-1900. q River Awareness and Safety, 2-5 p.m. June 1, Tanner Landing Park, corner of 433rd Avenue Southeast and Southeast Mount Si Road, for children 10 and older. Ages 10-14 must be accompanied by an adult. Fee $30.

Clubs q Snoqualmie Fraternal Order of Eagles Women’s Auxiliary, first and third Tuesday, 7 p.m. Men’s Aerie, first and third Wednesday, 7 p.m., both at 108 Railroad Ave., 888-1129 q Cancer survivor group, 9 a.m. second Saturday, Sawdust Coffee, North Bend Factory Stores mall, q Snoqualmie Valley Youth Hub — cultural, athletic, recreational and educational opportunities for young people — 831-1900 q Loyal Order of Moose, 108 Sydney Ave., North Bend; men at 6 p.m. first and third Monday; women at 7 p.m. third and fourth Tuesday; 888-0951 q Washington Freemasons, 7:30 p.m. first Wednesday, Unity Lodge No. 198, North Bend, 888-5779 q Mental illness support group, 7-8:30 p.m. Fridays, Snoqualmie Fire Station, 37600 S.E. Snoqualmie Parkway, free for anyone with a mental illness or who has a family member with a mental illness, 829-2417 q Mount Si Artist Guild meeting, 9:15-11 a.m. third Saturday, Mount Si Senior Center, 411 Main Ave. S., North Bend, q SnoValley Beekeepers, 7 p.m. second Tuesday, Meadowbrook Interpretive Center, Meadowbrook Farm, 1711 Boalch Ave., North Bend, q Trellis gardening club, 10 a.m. third Saturday, Valley Christian Assembly, 32725 S.E. 42nd St., Fall City, new and experienced gardeners are welcome q Moms Club of North Bend, 10 a.m. last Monday, Totz, 249 Main Ave. S., Suite E, North Bend, children welcome, q Survivors of the Snoqualmie Valley School District, third Tuesday, Si View Community Center, 292-7191 Submit an item for the community calendar by emailing or go to

SnoValley Star

MAY 31, 2012

run over by a pickup in front of his Snoqualmie Ridge home. The foundation has supported various athletic scholarship, academic scholarship and child safety programs throughout the Snoqualmie Valley since its inception. The foundation is dedicated to teaching kids to “Have Fun, Play Fair and Play Safe” and to ensuring that Tanner’s legacy lives on. Learn more about the rodeo by calling 888-3333 or 396-4570.

share views about the recent legislative sessions throughout the discussion. Call the toll-free number at 1-877-229-8493 and enter the code 15549 at the prompt. Residents can also contact the North Bend Republican at 360-786-7852 or jay.rodne@leg. Rodne’s district stretches from Issaquah to the Snoqualmie Pass, and from Sammamish to Maple Valley.

Local lawmaker hosts telephone ‘town hall’

Si View Metro Parks awarded grants

State Rep. Jay Rodne invites 5th Legislative District constituents to join a telephone “town hall meeting” June 19. The discussion is scheduled to start at 6:30 p.m. and last for 60 minutes. Rodne plans to take constituents’ questions and

A $65,000 King County Youth Sports Facility Grant was awarded to Si View Metro Parks to assist with Si View Park field improvements, according to a press release. The YSFG program provides matching funds to rehabilitate

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or develop sports fields and facilities serving youths in King County. Si View Park Field Improvements is one of nine funded projects this year from a pool of 32 applicants, according to the May 17 press release. The Snoqualmie Valley Youth Soccer Association, as the grant co-applicant, has pledged nearly $10,000 as a financial match for the project. Si View Park field improvements include grading of the fields for safer playing surface, installation of an irrigation system, improved drainage of the park and reconfiguration of the fields to maximize use of space. These improvements are all part of the Si View and Shamrock Park Master Plan and will begin this summer. Funding for the project has been secured through these grant dollars and from the sale of voter-approved bonds, according to the press release. Si View Metro Parks was also recently awarded a $25,000 grant from the Washington State Heritage Capital Projects Fund, administered by the Washington State Historical Society. The funds have assisted with the Si View Community Center Rehabilitation Project, which includes siding, window, roof and gutter improvements, and restoration on the historical 74-year-old Si View Community Center and Pool. This project is nearing completion, according to the press release. Learn more about Si View Metropolitan Park District’s master plan projects at or call Travis Stombaugh at 831-1900.

Outdoor recreation can bring encounters with bears and other wildlife

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The eighth annual Tanner Jeans Memorial Bike Safety Rodeo will be from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. June 9 and is open to the entire community. Bring children to learn about safety and have a great time. The bike safety rodeo will be at Snoqualmie Community Park, 35016 S.E. Ridge St., and the adjacent new Snoqualmie Community Center. Activities include: q Bike safety instruction by the Snoqualmie Police Department with age-appropriate obstacle courses q Bike helmets inspected by police; replacement helmets will be provided to those children whose helmet does not pass inspection q Bike inspections and tune-

ups by members of Dirt Corps and Gregg’s Cycles q Free T-shirts and safety certificates for all participants q Free Johnsonville Brats, beverages and snacks by our great sponsors q Bouncers, face painters and balloon makers q Legends Car Club antique car display This is a free event; however, donations are gladly accepted and will be used for future bike safety rodeo events. The bike safety rodeo is hosted and co-sponsored by the Snoqualmie Police Department and the Tanner Jeans Memorial Foundation. The Tanner Jeans Memorial Foundation is a nonprofit organization formed eight years ago in response to the loss of 7-yearold Tanner Jeans. He was bicycling with friends when he was


Bike safety rodeo coming to the Snoqualmie Valley


Spring and the beginning of the outdoor recreation season can bring unexpected encounters with Washington’s wildlife.  This is the time of year when Washington’s black bears are especially active, now that they have emerged from their dens and are foraging for food, according to a state Department of Fish and Wildlife press release.   Campers and picnickers — as well as people residing in rural and greenbelt areas — can follow some simple precautions to minimize the chance of a problem encounter.   One of the most important precautions to take is to secure food and garbage so they don’t become an attractant to bears, Nate Pamplin, wildlife program director for the department, said.  Black bears are known for their ability to find food at a distance with their keen sense of See BEARS, Page 16

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smell. Since they’re omnivores, anything from hamburgers on the grill to roasted marshmallows at a campfire can attract them. Squirrels, skunks, raccoons, coyotes, deer and many birds also can be drawn to unsecured food and garbage, Pamplin said. And smaller animals can attract larger and potentially more dangerous ones, such as cougars.  To reduce the chance of problem encounters with bears, cougars or other wildlife while recreating outdoors: q Keep a clean camp. Clean grills and put garbage in wildlife-resistant trash containers where available. q Store food in vehicles or in wildlife-resistant food lockers when possible. Otherwise, hang food in backpacks or other containers from a tree branch at least 10 feet above the ground and four feet out from the tree trunk. Never store food in tents. q When camping, sleep at least 100 yards from the cooking area and food storage site. q When fishing, clean fish away from camp or the picnic area and dispose of entrails properly. q Hike in small groups and make noise by singing or talking. Keep small children close and on trails. Leave family pets at home or confine or restrain them in camp and on trails to avoid drawing wildlife. q Do not approach dead animals, especially deer or elk that could have been cougar prey left for a later meal.  Direct encounters with bears are rare, but if such a situation

occurs, here’s what to do: q Stay calm and avoid direct eye contact, which could elicit a charge. Try to stay upwind and identify yourself as a human by standing up, talking and waving your hands above your head. q Do not approach the bear, particularly if cubs are present. Give the bear plenty of room. q If you cannot safely move away from the bear, and the animal does not flee, try to scare it away by clapping your hands or yelling. q If a bear attacks, fight back aggressively. As a last resort, should the attack continue, protect yourself by curling into a ball or lying on the ground on your stomach and playing dead.  Encounters with cougars are even rarer, but if it happens:  q Stop and stand tall. Pick up small children. Don’t run — a cougar’s instinct is to chase. q Try to appear larger than the cougar. Never take your eyes off the animal or turn your back. Do not crouch down or try to hide. q Do not approach the animal, especially if it is near a kill or with kittens. q If the animal displays aggressive behavior, shout, wave your arms and throw rocks. The idea is to convince the cougar that you are not prey, but a potential danger. q If the cougar attacks, fight back aggressively and try to stay on your feet. Cougars have been driven away by people who have fought back.  Department officials respond to bear and cougar sightings if there is a threat to public safety or property. In emergencies, dial 911 for help.  Learn more about avoiding problems with wildlife at http://

We are the Faces of Hope.

Please Join Us In The Fight!

Photo by My Beloved Photography

Relay for Life of Snoqualmie Valley July 7 & 8, 2 pm at Centennial Field in Snoqualmie Want to be part of this amazing event? Visit, call American Cancer Society Representative, Sarah Yelenich at 206-674-4166 or email Event Chair, Wendy Nesland at


Local woman writes book about motorcycle life. Page 3 Take a ride May 31, 2012 VOL. 4, NO. 22 Season’s end Picture this Mount Si principal l...