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/ February 10, 2022


watching Quotes about love... compiled by

Ben Olson

“Marriage has no guarantees. If that’s what you’re looking for, go live with a car battery.” Erma Bombeck Writer, humorist

READER 111 Cedar Street, Suite 9 Sandpoint, ID 83864 (208) 946-4368 Publisher: Ben Olson Editorial: Zach Hagadone (Editor) Lyndsie Kiebert-Carey (News Editor) Cameron Rasmusson (emeritus) John Reuter (emeritus) Advertising: Jodi Berge

“Real love amounts to withholding the truth, even when you’re offered the perfect opportunity to hurt someone’s feelings.” David Sedaris Author, humorist

Contributing Artists: Francisco (cover), Ben Olson, LPOW, Bill Borders Contributing Writers: Zach Hagadone, Ben Olson, Lyndsie Kiebert-Carey, Lorraine H. Marie, Brenden Bobby, Steve Klatt, Sen. Jim Woodward, Steve Holt, Dan Haley, Sophie Poldermans, Patty Hutchens Submit stories to: Printed weekly at: Tribune Publishing Co. Lewiston, ID

“Romantic love is a mental illness. But it’s a pleasurable one.” Fran Lebowitz Author

“The happiest marriage I can picture would be the union of a deaf man to a blind woman.” Samuel Taylor Coleridge Poet, philosopher

“Love is a fire. But whether it is going to warm your heart or burn down your house, you can never tell.” Joan Crawford Actress

Subscription Price: $155 per year Web Content: Keokee The Sandpoint Reader is a weekly publication owned and operated by Ben Olson and Keokee. It is devoted to the arts, entertainment, politics and lifestyle in and around Sandpoint, Idaho. We hope to provide a quality alternative by offering honest, in-depth reporting that reflects the intelligence and interests of our diverse and growing community. The Reader is printed on recycled paper using soy-based ink. Leftover copies are collected and recycled weekly, or burned in massive bonfires to appease the gods of journalism. Free to all, limit two copies per person.

Sandpoint Reader letter policy: The Sandpoint Reader welcomes letters to the editor on all topics. Requirements: –No more than 300 words –Letters may not contain excessive profanity or libelous material. Please elevate the discussion. Letters will be edited to comply with the above requirements. Opinions expressed in these pages are those of the writers, not necessarily the publishers. Email letters to: Check us out on the web at: Like us on Facebook. About the Cover

This week’s cover is a photograph of a graffito noticed on a wall in Porto, Portugal. It was done by a rather well known street artist named Francisco. Photo taken by Ben Olson. February 10, 2022 /


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BoCo commissioners approve 700-acre Selle Valley zone change

File gains 2-1 approval after 4-hour public hearing

By Lyndsie Kiebert-Carey Reader Staff The board of Bonner County commissioners voted Feb. 9 to approve the rezone of more than 700 acres in the Selle Valley, changing the land designation from 20- to 10-acre parcel minimums. The motion passed on a 2-1 vote after a more than four-hour public hearing at the Bonner County Administration Building, with Commissioners Dan McDonald and Jeff Connolly in support and Steve Bradshaw against. The decision comes after the county’s Planning and Zoning Commission recommended denial of the zone change in November, despite planning staff determining that the request would keep the land in compliance with the Bonner County Comprehensive Plan. Under the Comp Plan, the land — owned by the Skinner and Otis families, or Pack River Partners, LLC — must remain Agricultural-Forestry 20 or AF-10. In his staff report presentation Feb. 9, Planner Chad Chambers reminded the board and attendees that the file before them had only to do with zoning — not any future plans for development. “A request for a zone change is not a request for a subdivision of land,” he said. Dan Provolt, a surveyor representing the applicants, shared a history of the property, noting that when the Skinners purchased the land in 1996 and 2003, it was zoned AF-10. During a countywide zoning overhaul in 2008, it changed to AF-20. “The Skinners went about their business of farming and ranching as meetings were being held,” Provolt said, arguing that there was not adequate notice of the zone change in 2008. “Their rights as private landowners, as well as the rights and possibilities that came with the 4 /


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land they purchased in 1996 and 2003, was taken from them,” he added. Despite that alleged loss of “rights and possibilities,” Provolt said that Don Skinner does not plan to develop his land. Skinner concurred when he addressed the board. “To set the record straight, there’s been a lot of misinformation and a lot of accusations toward our family, toward our ranch and toward our business,” Skinner said. “It’s gotten so volatile where it is pitting neighbor against neighbor, and that’s a dangerous place to be. “I don’t have any plans, other than I want my zoning back to where it was when I purchased it,” he added. Provolt pointed to the 10- and five-acre parcels scattered throughout the Selle Valley as proof that rural character and farming practices could be preserved even on 10-acre pieces of land. “I would venture to say that most people driving through the Selle Valley wouldn’t know when it changed from AF-10 to AF-20,” he said. The public comment period saw more than 30 people opposed to the zone change, as well as a small handful either in favor or simply asking questions about the proposal. Those opposed expressed concerns about water availability, the local infrastructure’s capacity to support up to 71 new homes and the reality of truly viable, regenerative farming practices on 10 acres or less. “The fact is, you chop it up, you never get it back,” said Selle Valley resident Jennifer Wood. “Let’s preserve our home.” Dave Bowman, of the newly formed land use watchdog group Keep Bonner County Rural, cited a portion of the Pack River Partners’ application, which states the “reason for the zone change” as

“to allow the land owners to have usable options for the parcels, similar to the surrounding area.” “Folks, that’s not a necessity,” he said. “That’s a want.” Susan Bowman pointed to the concept of “spot zoning” — what many opponents see as the ability for a landowner to essentially handpick their property’s designation. “We all know that development is inevitable,” she said. “All we are asking is that you be fair and not favor one property owner by allowing spot zoning. … I hope today will be the day that you start listening to the people and begin following our zoning laws.” Doug Gunter stated that the commissioners’ decision on the file, and several other files headed to public hearings in coming weeks, would “determine whether you’ll be sitting in those chairs for another term.” “The people are disgusted with what you are allowing and we are about ready to make

change,” he said. Though the P&Z Commission recommended denial in November on the grounds that the zone change violated Title 12 of Bonner County Revised Code and elements of the Comp Plan such as land use, public services, implementation, natural resources, school facilities and transportation, the legitimacy of that decision came into question several times at the Feb. 9 meeting. “It seemed like they were stepping outside the bounds of what their job was,” Commissioner Jeff Connolly said. “A lot of this stuff that they’re addressing in their finding is part of a subdivision [process], not part of this zone change.” Commissioner Dan McDonald said he was “befuddled” by the recommendation to deny. Despite concerns that McDonald’s personal relationship with Skinner would make his participation in the decision a conflict of interest, county legal counsel confirmed at the top of the hearing that Mc-

An aerial view of the Selle Valley. Photo courtesy Max Zuberbuhler. Donald had been interviewed and cleared to vote on the file. “We’ve taken this one piece of land and we’ve treated it differently than any other zone change we’ve ever done, is what it looks like to me,” he said, adding later: “I get the concerns about wells, I get the concerns about water, about impact on wildlife, the school district as well, but that would come only if the applicant chose to develop the property, and at that point there would come a whole other set of hearings.” Though he spoke very little during the hearing leading up to deliberations, Commissioner Bradshaw made a motion to deny the zone change, citing the applicant’s “lack of being able to show the necessity.” His motion died without a second, and Connolly presented a motion to approve the zone change, which passed with McDonald’s support.


Council denies appeal of P&Z permit ruling on Lincoln and Main townhome project By Zach Hagadone Reader Staff Members of the Sandpoint City Council voted 3-2 in a special meeting and public hearing Feb. 9 to deny an appeal brought by property owners adjacent to a proposed 13-unit multi-family townhome development on Lincoln Avenue and Main Street. Leanne and J. Scott Nixon, who live immediately north of the project fronted by ZPD Lincoln LLC, argued that a previous decision by the Planning and Zoning Commission in December to recommend approval of a conditional use permit for the development should be reversed by the City Council on the grounds that it did not fit with the surrounding neighborhood and ran afoul of zoning, height and setback ordinances, resulting in their loss of privacy and violation of their property rights. “We know there’s a housing crisis and we’re not against development,” Leanna Nixon said, “[but] we are against development that doesn’t adhere to planning code.” The site of the proposed development has presented a number of challenges to city staff and elected officials since it came before P&Z in December. Former-Commissioner Cate Huisman, in particular, said she was “frustrated” that the site had been re-platted in 2004 in such a way that created one parcel on Lincoln Avenue, one parcel on Main Street and two isolated in the middle with no public right of way access. Owing to the sideways “L”shape of the property, the developer proposed a private driveway that would dog leg through the four parcels, connecting Lincoln and Main and providing access for three two-story buildings: two with a total of eight units along the northern property boundary and one with five, larger units on the eastern portion.

Four out of the five surrounding properties are developed with one-story single-family homes, prompting neighbors to push back. Seven nearby residents testified in favor of the Nixons’ appeal, with most citing concerns over increased traffic, heightened density, constricted access for emergency vehicles and building heights that are inappropriate for the surrounding area. “I am very concerned with the size and scope of this housing complex,” said neighborhood resident Susan Prez. “We can do better to address our housing problem than to put a 13 [unit] multi-family housing project in an established single-family neighborhood.” Taylor Bradish, who also lives nearby the site of the proposed development, said, “This project throws all the codes out the window. … We need housing, but this is not the spot.” Planning and Zoning commissioners in December heard similar arguments, and so recommended approval with the condition that the townhome structures retain five-foot setbacks and a further 10-foot step back for the second story — meaning that while the units may be only five feet from neighboring property lines, the second stories would be 15 feet from adjacent properties. “It’s a thorny question because we need the housing and I appreciate the developers’ desire to build it,” Huisman said at the time, later adding, “I don’t see this project as fitting in with the scale of the neighborhood … [But] I’m afraid that may be the best we can do.” Applicants William and Kathy Friedmann emphasized that their purpose in developing the project is to provide much-needed rental housing that would be accessible to local workers, telling P&Z in December that they intended to keep prices between 25% and 30% below market rate. They also underscored that

they would be willing to purchase 10 feet of the parcel to the south in order to move the fourunit buildings even farther from the Nixons’ property line and forgo the second-story step back. Representing the Friedmanns at the Feb. 9 hearing, Sandpoint attorney Stephen Snedden said, “The set-back second floor just doesn’t work with the structures,” describing the condition as tantamount to a “penalty” and “onerous.” Interim City Planner Daren Fluke said that the applicants always had the option under the condition imposed by P&Z to achieve the 15-foot setback from the Nixon’s property in a number of ways, including incorporating the second-story step back, articulating the structure in such a way as to provide the required setback, or acquiring additional property and simply moving the structure an additional 10 feet. Representing the Nixons, Sandpoint attorney Brent Featherston said that upon hearing of the possibility that at least one of the buildings in the develop-

ment may be relocated 10 feet farther from his clients’ property, “That may alleviate some of the objections that the Nixons have and may alleviate the need for additional proceedings.” However, Featherston said the bigger issues centered on consistency with the scale of adjacent properties and providing “common sense” setbacks that reflect the reality of the structures’ orientation, rather than the frontage of the lots on public rights of way. “Those are backyards, those are rear yards and should be subject to the rear yard setback,” he said referring to the site plan, which defined the backs of the townhomes as “side yards” and therefore subject only to the fivefoot setback requirement. “We need to be thoughtful here,” he added. As for the arguments that the scale and density of the project were out of proportion to the surrounding neighborhood, the applicants and city staff pointed out that while three of the four lots were identified as being

A conceptual drawing of the proposed development near Lincoln Ave. Image courtesy SOK Design Studio.

within Context Area-2 — the city’s lowest-density designation — all four are within the residential multi-family zone. While Fluke said that presents a “plan-zone conflict,” “the underlying zoning of the property creates the law that we apply when we receive a development application.” Under the residential multi-family zone, structures may be as tall as 40 feet, while the proposed townhome development would be about 29 feet tall. After about three-and-a-half hours of presentations, testimony and deliberation, Council members Kate McAlister, Andy Groat and Deb Ruehle voted “yes” to a motion denying the appeal, with Council members Joel Aispuro and Justin Dick voting “no.” Council member Jason Welker was absent owing to a personal relationship with one of the parties and so declined to attend. February 10, 2022 /


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Idaho hits ‘peak’ of omicron surge

By Lyndsie Kiebert-Carey Reader Staff

State health officials shared a message of tentative optimism Feb. 8 during their weekly novel coronavirus media update, telling reporters that Idaho is on the downward slope of virus data that seemed to do nothing but set new records in the new year thanks to the highly contagious omicron variant. “I’m super happy to be able to say something positive because I’m usually giving bad news but yes, we have hit our peak,” Dr. Kathryn Turner, deputy state epidemiologist, said during the media briefing, as reported by Boise news station KTVB. “This is not over just because we’re starting to see a downward trend,” she added. “The case numbers are crazy high relative to what they’ve been earlier on in the pandemic.” The Idaho Capital Sun reported that Idaho saw an average of 600 people hospitalized with COVID-19 during the past week — a number now headed on the decline, according to the latest data. The last time the number of hospitalized COVID patients peaked was September 2021, when the delta variant caused a deadly surge, which resulted in 800 Idahoans requiring hospital care. Despite the promising shift, Idaho’s status as one of the least vaccinated states in the nation continues to cause concern among health officials. Of everyone eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine — that is, anyone 5 years of age or older — Idaho’s population sits at about 53.4% fully vaccinated, versus the 68.2% national figure. While 76.1% of Idahoans over the age of 65 are fully vaccinated, the national percentage is 88.5%. “We worry that these low numbers leave

Idahoans vulnerable to future outbreaks, hospitalizations and deaths, especially compared to other states, where we know that rates are higher,” State Epidemiologist Dr. Christine Hahn told reporters Feb. 8. “We also want people to consider getting a booster to make sure they continue to have a high level of protection against this unpredictable virus as we continue to wait to see if we get future waves of it.” According to the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare, people who have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and received a booster shot at least six months after their original series are 11 times less likely to be hospitalized for virus-related health issues than those who are unvaccinated. People with booster shots are also 20 times less likely to die from the virus. The nation saw a grim milestone in the pandemic Feb. 4, as the U.S. surpassed 900,000 COVID-related deaths. In Idaho, that number nears 4,500. Several resources are available to those deciding to seek vaccination, including websites such as or, which can help connect people to pharmacies and other health facilities offering initial shots as well as boosters. As part of a nationwide effort to make COVID-19 testing more available to Americans, every U.S. household is eligible to order four free at-home rapid tests by going to Locally, testing can be accessed — with a doctor’s order — at the Bonner General Health testing site, now located at 400 Schweitzer Plaza Drive in Ponderay. The site is open 8 a.m.-noon, Monday through Friday. Those with COVID-related questions can reach the Panhandle Health District’s virus hotline at 877-415-5225.

Panida Board meeting on Feb. 10

Financial report, strategic planning on the agenda

By Reader Staff

The Panida Theater Board of Directors will hold a community meeting on Thursday, Feb. 10 at 6 p.m. in the Panida Little Theater, featuring presentations on the financial status of both the theater facilities. Interim Board Chair Jim Healy said a central goal of the meeting is to address the Little Theater. Though purchased in the early 2000s, the space “has been underutilized and ignored for years,” Healy told the Reader. “The purpose of the meeting on Thursday is to show our love for the historic Panida Theater and to share our visions, views and considerations for the Little Theater,” he said, adding, “The board will not be voting on the future of the Little Theater at this meeting. Like the members of the community, board members will be both listening and hearing the different voices.” Presentations will include expenses and 6 /


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revenues for both the big and little theaters, with discussion led by Panida Managing Director Veronica Knowlton, followed by itemized and prioritized lists of improvements and needed repairs — including cost estimates — presented by members of the Panida Facilities Committee. The third presentation will come from Knowlton, Board Member Foster Cline and past-Board Member Chris Bessler, as the trio puts forth a five-phase strategic plan for both theaters. Finally, Cline — who is spearheading the Panida’s fundraising — will offer an update on the theater’s goal to raise $200,000 by the end of 2021. There will be an opportunity to ask questions and make comments after each presentation. Those with questions about the meeting can reach the Panida Theater at 208-2639191.

Bits ’n’ Pieces From east, west and beyond

East, west or beyond, sooner or later events elsewhere may have a local impact. A recent sampling: The Republican National Committee, in a private session, recently declared the investigation of the Jan. 6 insurrection effort “a Democrat-led persecution of ordinary citizens engaged in political discourse,” The New York Times reported. A number of Republican lawmakers have voiced disagreement with the RNC’s stance, and the conservative National Review said the move served to buy the Republicans “a bounty of bad headlines and easy attack ads.” The Capitol attack led to nine deaths, at least 140 law officer injuries, the ransacking of Capitol offices and smearing of feces inside the Capitol building. The RNC also voted to censure Republican Reps. Liz Cheney and Adam Kinzinger for serving on the House Select Committee to investigate Jan. 6. In the days right after the insurrection, Republicans condemned the attack. The RNC’s statement of condemnation came shortly after Donald Trump’s declaration that, if elected in 2024, he would pardon convicted Jan. 6 attackers (former federal prosecutors say that could be obstruction of justice), and his claim that the vice president “could have overturned the election.” Former Vice President Mike Pence told the Federalist Society “I had no right to overturn the election.” Trump loyalist Stephen Bannon responded in his podcast by calling Pence a “coward … my head’s blowing up … I can’t take Pence … and Marc Short and all these Koch guys up there ratting out Trump.” Pence has a long history of connections with the ultra-wealthy and politically influential “Koch guys.” The New York Times reported that the Jan. 6 committee has interviewed more than 475 witnesses, most of whom volunteered to testify or agreed to testify without a subpoena. The committee has no power to prosecute and serves to draw up a report about Jan. 6 and make recommendations for preventing a similar event. An RNC member from Illinois portrayed the House Jan. 6 committee as terrorizing those they interviewed. Another RNC member called the RNC’s censure declaration “cancel culture at its worst.” In January employers added 467,000 new jobs, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Figures for November and December were also revised, and were found to be larger than initial reports.

By Lorraine H. Marie Reader Columnist

NPR reported that private sector wages in January were up 5.7% from a year ago, and some employees saw 13% gains in wages. With the unemployment rate at 4%, historian Heather Cox Richardson notes that the Biden administration has overseen the creation of more jobs “than any other year in history.” Strategic U.S. hit: Last week an Islamic leader plotting a comeback with his ISIS terrorist organization died when a U.S. commando team attacked his safe house in Syria. Rather than be taken by U.S. forces, Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Qurayshi detonated a bomb that killed him and his family, The Washington Post reported. The U.S. death toll from COVID-19 hit 900,000 on Feb. 4. Dr. Ashish Jha, dean of Brown University School of Public Health, said: “We got the medical science right. We failed on the social science,” such as combating often politicized disinformation. Jha said the U.S. could reach 1 million deaths by April. The U.S. population is 330 million. The CDC says 64% of the U.S. is now fully vaccinated. According to the International Energy Agency, it would cost 2% more than what’s already spent on our energy systems to get to a net-zero carbon economy. TIME magazine pointed out that 2% is $1.7 trillion. Meanwhile, every 3.5 years, governments give the fossil fuel industry checks equal to 2% of GDP. What’s more, every year the wealthy hide another $1.4 trillion in profits in tax havens — worth more than 10% of GDP. Conclusion: The money for addressing climate change is there. More info: Numerous media recently reported that, while in office, Donald Trump routinely defied the Presidential Records Act and tore up as well as incinerated a variety of documents. That act is gaining attention with torn and taped-together documents submitted to the Jan. 6 House Select Committee. Records personnel would go through burn-bags of shredded papers (headed to the Pentagon’s incinerator), to find important documents that needed to be salvaged and taped back together for required preservation. National Archive officials also seized 15 boxes of White House papers from Mar-a-Lago that Trump illegally had in his possession. Blast from the past, for Valentine’s Day: Sir Winston Churchill, British statesman (1874-1965), wrote that his “most brilliant achievement was my ability to persuade my wife to marry me.”


History shows Camp Bay beachfront has never been public By Steve Klatt Reader Contributor

Early mornings frequently find me glancing out my kitchen window for the first trace of dawn to the east as I write, read the papers or do paperwork at the kitchen table. This morning is especially poignant as I reread an article in which I am somewhat skewered by a former reporter who seems to have lost the professional standard of checking both sides of a story [Perspectives, “Camp Bay beach giveaway disputed,” Feb. 3, 2022]. She has made much of my conflict of interest in decisions about the Camp Bay Road, but might have inquired and learned I was quite cognizant of that conflict of interest, declaring it to the commissioners and the Road Department even before the road vacation matter was on the table for consideration. Turning all matters pertaining to the road over to Matt, our engineer, and Jason, the district foreman and then assistant director, explains a bit about Commissioner Dan McDonald’s statement regarding my personal conflict being “not relevant.” The darkness that lingers longer out the westside toward the road reminds me of the stark contrast I find between my personal knowledge of the history of Camp Bay and numerous interpretations I am seeing presented to incite a public furor over the request for a road vacation. This area has been my home ground for 65 years, including my current home for the past 28 years, and I have always enjoyed rambling around the entire peninsula. Although Garfield Bay was truly my stomping grounds, I have known many of the local old timers throughout my life. I learned a great deal about the history of Camp Bay as I have worked with descendants of John Van Scravendyk, the homesteading family, for the past 10 years. While engaged as a consulting property manager and becoming an officer in their corporation, I am not a principal and have never had a material interest in the property. When Bonner County was created in 1907, the population out here was sparse and roads were scarce to connect the few folks around here.

The Camp Bay Road came into existence through the local residents petitioning the commissioners in 1908 for the creation of a public road with them granting land for the road’s right of way. There were actually two roads created at that time and the other connected the Camp Bay Road from Livermore Lake to Glengary Bay, where the ferry landing and the post office were situated. The request was credible enough for the commissioners to have the proposal inspected by their viewer and a viewer’s report was approved for the creation of the public roads. The road as described and created followed the existing Van Scravendyk road through his property to Camp Bay. That road was a wagon trail and not likely to have been more than 15 feet wide at any point — that is what was granted as public right of way. A survey of the road completed by the county in 1909 terminated at the high water mark, which is a rather nebulous point when attempting to re-establish it today as a finite spot on the ground. Something many people do not understand is the substantial difference between the Lake Pend Oreille high water marks of 2020 with our current dam system (2062.5 elevation) and the springtime floods before the dams with their waves creating a high water mark of driftwood in 1900. As a youngster fishing on the lake with some of the old boys around the bay, I had these flooded high water marks pointed out to me on a number of occasions and they were many feet above the summer pool elevation of the lake. The petition for the road leading up to the viewer’s report stated the intent of the road was to provide settlers an outlet to Camp Bay, but did not state an outlet to Lake Pend Oreille, and there really is a notable difference in that language. For all the years that I have known Camp Bay, the beachfront was the private property of the Green (Van Scravendyk) family and anyone using the beach was a guest of the family. The beach has been posted “no trespassing” for many years and deputies have trespassed a number of uninvited people from that beach in the past. Folks, I am a strong advocate for

preserving and enhancing public access to the water for all of us to enjoy, but I cannot condone attempting to claim waterfront lands that have never been public. Because an attorney — attempting to gain physical access for his client that never existed in the past — makes claims about public ownership of the beachfront, that alone does not alter historical facts. Should the court rule in the future that there is in fact a public ownership of some waterfront in Camp Bay, it is highly unlikely to be 50 feet in width because that was never granted to Bonner County in the past. Prescriptive road law is being mixed in this public consternation with a historical right of way grant and they are quite different. Steve Klatt is the recently retired director of the Bonner County Road and Bridge Department.

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Real evidence of 2020 voter fraud…

Bouquets: • Our intrepid News Editor Lyndsie Kiebert-Carey celebrated a birthday Feb. 9, which means I also get to embarass her with praise in this week’s edition. We’re a pretty close-knit family here at Reader HQ. Our staff is small, but mighty, and I honestly don’t know what we’d do without Lyndsie’s energy, passion and fairness. In all my time working in journalism, she’s one of the most professional, fair-minded reporters who pains herself to make sure everything under her byline is accurate. She started at the Reader as an intern fresh out of college and she’s now the third leg of our tripod. I hope when Zach and I eventually burn out to mere husks of our former selves, Lyndsie will carry the mantle of the Reader forward, because this community is richer for her words. I’m so thankful we get to have her on our staff. Happy birthday, LKC!

Barbs: • There are a few things I’ll never understand in this world. I don’t get why people join cults, eat stinky cheese or drive PT Cruisers. I’ll never understand why so many middle class Americans threw their support so heavily behind the charlatan con-man Donald Trump. For the life of me, I can’t figure out how limiting access to voting is somehow considered patriotic by some on the right side of the political spectrum. I’m of the belief that the more people who vote in an election, the more the elected candidates represent their constituents. We’re seeing bills limiting voter access across the country, all stemming from Trump’s baseless griping about voter fraud to explain why he lost the 2020 election. There are two such bills being introduced by Idaho Republicans now, one which nixes same-day voter registration and another which invalidates a student ID as an acceptable form of ID (though it allows a concealed weapons permit). When the powers attempt to limit the ability of the people to vote, that’s when we need to vote them out of office before it’s too late. 8 /


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Dear editor, I rarely buy into conspiracy theories. Until this week I didn’t believe that there was evidence to prove that the 2020 presidential election was riddled with voter fraud and election interference; but, when real indisputable evidence is presented, I have to be willing to admit I am wrong and recant earlier incorrect assumptions. “The Justice Department,” according to The Week, ABC News and other sources, “confirmed it was investigating fake certificates containing slates of pro-Trump electors that were sent from seven swing states won by Joe Biden, falsely indicating Trump won where he did not. Multiple sources have traced certificates signed by Republican state officials back to recruitment efforts spearheaded by Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani.” “John Eastman,” another Trump lawyer, “pressured Mike Pence to use the certificates to halt the electoral count.” Fourteen different people signed the certificates from seven different states, some of them were not even electors. All of the documents are fraudulent and being investigated. This is an obvious conspiracy traced back to the White House. In the 770 pages of internal Trump administration documents, many which were torn up, a draft was discovered of an executive order calling the National Guard to seize voting machines based on false claims of election interference. I am willing to change my belief that the Jan. 6 insurrection was caused by a bunch of lunatic rightwing radicals to a belief that the FBI and Antifa were the majority of people in the crowd causing the violence just as soon as real evidence is provided for that. Until then I will believe the Oath Keepers, Proud Boys and groups like them were incited by Trump’s “fight like hell” cheer. Show me real proof of anything other than that from the Justice Department and I will reconsider my view. Betty Gardner Priest River

Woodruff will be missed… Dear editor, We are writing to join with others who have lauded Kim Woodruff for his work with the Sandpoint Park and Recreation Department. We are members of Kinnikinnick Native Plant Society, the organization that developed and maintains the Native Plant Arboretum located in Lakeview Park. Over the years Kim was the go-to person when we needed official help with our work at the arboretum.


Legislative update

Making progress on the plan

By Sen. Jim Woodward, R-Sagle Reader Contributor A few weeks ago, I provided an outline of the governor’s budget and policy proposals for the 2022 legislative session. We are now one month into the session and making great progress. In the past two weeks, significant tax relief and a major investment in our public school system have passed through both bodies of the Idaho Legislature. In the coming weeks, we will focus on infrastructure improvements. The transportation proposal includes $200 million in new road maintenance funding split 60/40 between the Idaho Transportation Department and local government entities. In addition, we anticipate funding another $200 million for local bridges across the state. Rural water and sewer districts will have a great opportunity to take on otherwise unaffordable capital projects with $450 million in grant funding that will be authorized this year for use through 2026. These are just some examples of the long-term investments we are making in Idaho, all of which will have an effect in our rural communities. The tax relief package now signed into law has two components. First, a portion of the $1.9 billion of tax revenue that was above last year’s budget forecast is being returned to the taxpayers of Idaho as a one-time refund. Last year, people received checks that were 9% of their 2019 tax payment. This year, Idaho taxpayers will receive a refund that is 12% of KNPS depended on the Park District to approve our plans, help us clean up after major wind storms, approve plant sales and other activities involving our project. Kim, in all cases, was responsive, kind and appreciated the arboretum. In the early days of KNPS, when we were looking for a larger meeting place, he arranged for us to use the Community Hall for our monthly meetings. He will be missed as he represented the best a public official could be. Ken and Mary Jo Haag Sandpoint

Think about it… Dear editor,

Sen. Jim Woodward. File photo. their 2020 tax payment. If an Idahoan paid $1,000 in 2020 taxes, they will receive a refund check for $120. To determine your refund amount, look at Line 20 of your 2020 Idaho Form 40. You will receive 12% of that amount or a minimum of $75. The eternal challenge in taxation is fairness. The program returns the money to those who provided it. The refund is less than one-fifth of the $1.9 billion. The Idaho approach says that we invest in our future, as described above, save for a rainy day and, in this case, return some of the money to its source. The second part of the tax relief package is an ongoing income tax rate reduction. Idaho income tax is currently at 6.5% for income over $5,000. For tax year 2022 and forward, the income tax rate will be 6% for income over $5,000. The rates are lower for income less than $5,000. We all want to minimize our taxes, but I am wary of any further reductions in the income tax rate. We have moved, in three steps, The following are my thoughts/ suggestions regarding some local issues that affect residents of Bonner County. 1. The Selle Valley is starting to be destroyed by the contentious change of the 700 acres owned by Otis-Skinner located across from Northside Elementary School. The proposed change from 20-acre to 10-acre minimums in violation of existing code. County Commissioner Dan McDonald should recuse himself from voting on this proposal. Does he even understand the concept of “conflict of interest”? Why didn’t he and the other county commissioners at least read and listen to the Save Selle Valley group? They all live in the Selle Valley.

from a rate of 7.4% to 6% in the last five years. High population growth and prosperous economic times provide strong tax revenues, but we shouldn’t fall behind in adequate funding of state government functions. No one likes to sit in traffic wasting their time and no one wants to hear their child is in an overcrowded school classroom not being provided the education they need. This week we passed public school employee health care legislation. The legislation is the first step in adding $105 million annually to the school budget to bring teacher health care funding on par with state employees. A benefit of fully funding teacher health care with state funds is the opportunity to reduce the use of supplemental property tax levies. I was proud to sponsor the legislation in the Senate and look forward to finishing the job in a few weeks with the funding bills. I normally stick with policy discussions in these updates. If you are a political observer, you may have noticed I’ve been in the headlines a few times recently. I attribute that coverage to stances I’ve taken in preserving the Idaho we all know and appreciate. I am not trying to change Idaho. I work daily to keep in place the Idaho I grew up in and the Idaho I intend to remain in. Jim Woodward is a second-term Republican senator from Sagle. He serves on the Joint Finance-Appropriations and Education committees, and as vice chair of the Transportation Committee. Reach him during the 2022 legislative session at 208-332-1349, 208-946-7963 or 2. The ice rink location, between the sheriff’s facility and the fairgrounds: Big mistake. The Sheriff’s Office needs space to add potentially new/remodeled additional facilities (as our county population continues to grow), and keep everything in one location. Again, County Commissioner McDonald has pushed his agenda onto the rest of us. At least Commissioner Connolly proposes a re-look/re-think of the ice rink location. 3. The real question is: Who does Commissioner McDonald really represent? It ain’t me babe. Concerned county resident, Michael Harmelin Sandpoint


Waterkeeper: Strengthening stormwater protections By Steve Holt and Dan Haley Reader Contributors Stormwater is one of the most significant threats to water quality across the globe. Simply put, stormwater is just what it sounds like: water created by a storm that sheets and/or travels to the nearest large body of water, typically a stream; river; lake; or, the end result, the ocean. Water is not only vital to human health and all ecosystems, but is also a great vehicle for picking up hitchhikers such as litter, synthetic chemicals, automobile drippings and lawn nutrients, among a multitude of other pollutants. The better we understand the route water decides to take, the better we can prevent these hitchhikers from doing harm to our precious waterways. There are a variety of methods for treating stormwater. Mother Earth does an excellent job on her own, if we just slow down the vehicle allowing for filtration through the soil and for vegetation to take advantage of some of the nutrients it provides. There are also a variety of mechanical systems that can direct water through filters to accomplish the same task. Monitoring can be a helpful tool in determining the identity of the hitchhikers and the best management practices that should be used. Very little is understood about the composition of stormwater in our watershed and LPOW does not have the funding to monitor stormwater nearly to the extent we do in the lake. Locally, our stormwater is not treated through mechanical means, hence directing, controlling the speed and allowing Mother Nature time to do her job is critical. There are a variety of laws governing activities that present threats to water quality. Stormwater management regulations, grad-

ing permits and vegetative buffers all play a critical role in protecting our environment. In addition to federal and state regulations, the city of Sandpoint and Bonner County have stormwater ordinances that implement a variety of best management practices. Both the city and the county are in the process of amending them. Sandpoint is proposing changes to the 25-foot vegetative buffer required near Sand Creek and Bonner County is proposing to decrease the current 40-foot buffer for all waterways. While these buffers play a critical role in protecting water quality, according to the Idaho Department of Environmental Quality, they are far short of the 200-foot recommended to adequately protect the environment. LPOW is working diligently to ensure these ordinances do not dilute the current limited protections but rather that they are strengthened to provide additional and needed protections. Anytime we make adjustments to laws that affect everyone, we are more likely to have success if

a significant quantity of well-informed local citizens participate in the discussion. We will do our best to keep you informed. Please stay tuned-in for Waterkeeper updates and meeting notices from both the city and county. We also wanted to alert everyone that conversations are again taking place regarding one of the more polluted sites in Sandpoint, the Joslyn property, located on the west side of North Boyer Avenue just north of Super 1 Foods. This property was once home to a facility that treated utility poles with a variety of toxic chemicals that have contaminated soil and groundwater to a depth of at least 30 feet. The Idaho Department of Environmental Quality learned of substantial contamination at the site around the year 2000. Even though two consent judgments from the courts have been imposed against Joslyn and the judgments called for commencement of remedial action in 2013, no remedial action has occurred. Current sampling data clearly indicate that a substantial amount of pentachlorophenol, a toxin

and carcinogen, has migrated offsite, across the adjacent vacant lot and could now be under the Milltown apartment building on Sixth Avenue. Additionally, surface water samples collected by LPOW show that contamination is reaching Sand Creek, which is a tributary to the lake. The engineering firm managing the project will be presenting a summary of the Remedial Action Work Plan to the Sandpoint City Council sometime in February. The city and the Waterkeeper will announce the meeting date when it is confirmed. This will be an excellent time to learn

more and provide input regarding the remedial design. We will be talking about stormwater and this project at our Keeping Up With the Waterkeeper event, scheduled for Thursday, Feb. 10 at 5:30 p.m. at the Sandpoint VFW Post, 1325 Pine St. The event is free and open to anyone interested in learning more about stormwater in our watershed. To learn more, check out our website at Steve Holt is executive director of the Lake Pend Oreille Waterkeeper. Dan Haley is a retired environmental engineer.

A culvert in Bonner County. Photo courtesy LPOW. February 10, 2022 /


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Mad about Science:

Brought to you by:

percy lavon Julian By Brenden Bobby Reader Columnist February is Black History Month and, to celebrate, I’ll be writing about some amazing Black scientists and inventors throughout the brief history of the United States, as well as the incredible accomplishments they’ve shared with the world. It’s important to acknowledge the adversity that these thinkers experienced — the barriers thrown up before them weren’t accidental or happenstance, but targeted systems built to establish and maintain an unfair status quo. Acknowledging the struggles and burdens imposed on Black Americans by white supremacist policies, opinions and actions in the past and present should make us sad. It should make us angry. It should make us uncomfortable. Even if we aren’t personally responsible for the transgressions of those who came before us, it’s important to feel these things so that we can ensure those transgressions never occur again; so we can leave the world a better place than we inherited. It’s important that we listen — really listen — to the stories of people of color, and that we acknowledge and understand the challenges they face and how incredible it is that so many people were able to overcome these trials and still do something great in the world for everyone who would follow them, regardless of the color of their skin. If, for whatever reason, this subject upsets you, just turn the page. For everyone still here, let’s learn about an awesome chemist who may have helped someone you love. Percy Lavon Julian was born on April 11, 1899 in Montgomery, Ala. He was the first child of 10 /


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six overachievers, all of whom graduated at one point or another from DePauw University in Indiana. During this time in Alabama, Black Americans were prohibited from learning at public schools past the eighth grade. Ever the scholar, Julian managed to skirt the rules and began college classes at DePauw while also finishing his high school classes outside of the Jim Crow South. Indiana wasn’t a whole lot kinder than the South. Greencastle, Ind., was still a segregated town. Julian took numerous jobs while studying, including manual labor, waiting tables and other jobs for a fraternity on campus. This eventually led to him being allowed to sleep in the attic of the fraternity house, as the boarding house he had been staying at refused to feed him because of his skin color. Despite all of this and more, Julian graduated from DePauw as a Phi Beta Kappa and valedictorian — a difficult feat for anyone, let alone a Black man in the 1920s. With his diploma in hand, Julian accepted a teaching position at Fisk University in Nashville, Tenn. In order to obtain his M.S., and eventually a Ph.D., he would have to prove that he could teach as well as he could learn. After two years, Harvard offered him a position, but it was soon revoked. He traveled to the University of Vienna in Europe, where he would become one of the first Black Americans in the world to earn a doctorate. A passionate chemist, Julian returned to the U.S. to teach and experiment. He and a fellow Vienna alum, Josef Pikl, managed to synthesize a compound called physostigmine. This is a poisonous substance derived from the Calabar bean, however, it was used to treat glaucoma. The function of physostigmine is fairly complicat-

ed, so if you’re curious about its interaction with the eye and how it treats glaucoma, you may want to stop by the library and poke around the anatomy section. Dr. Julian was eventually accepted to the Glidden Company in Chicago, where he took the position of research director in charge of soy. While this may sound fairly mundane at first glance, you should know that a huge amount of our medical accomplishments rest on the humble soybean. Steroids, in particular, were of great interest to Dr. Julian. I know what you’re thinking and, no, we aren’t talking about steroids destined for the baseball diamond, but those were indeed a byproduct of research into soy. Instead, Dr. Julian was more interested in figuring out how to cheaply synthesize progesterone, a sex hormone that aids mothers during pregnancy and both mothers and babies during birth. The key to this research was a compound called stigmasterol, a compound that helps the membranes of plant cells maintain their shape and structure and keep from dissolving in water. Dr. Julian discovered that introducing water to soybean oil would produce stigmasterol as a byproduct, and this worked at very large scales. At one point, water had leaked into a vat containing purified soybean oil and created a funky congealed substance in the tank. That substance, a big glob of stigmasterol, was the key to being able to mass produce synthesized steroids. If you’ve ever suffered from pain due to inflammation, you’ve likely been prescribed steroids that were easily covered by your insurance. You have Dr. Percy Lavon Julian to thank for that affordability. However, one huge accomplishment wasn’t enough for Dr. Julian. He was also responsible for synthesizing cortisone and

hydrocortisone. Cortisone is a cortical hormone from our adrenal glands that acts to manage pain. Hydrocortisone is a steroid that works to calm your immune response, which reduces swelling and the associated pain. Most pain in your body is due

to swelling, which is frequently caused by our immune system being hyperactive and attacking our healthy cells instead of, or in addition to, foreign bacteria and viruses. Hydrocortisone is frequently used to treat rheumatoid arthritis, which is an autoimmune disease where your immune cells start attacking bone, cartilage, tendons or ligaments. While we don’t know what causes RA, we do know that hydrocortisone helps alleviate the reaction and the swelling, and you have Dr. Julian to thank for that as well. Stay curious, 7B.

Random Corner rvival stories?

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We can help!

• In 1848, a railroad foreman named Phineas Gage had a tamping iron — which was 43 inches long and weighed 13 pounds — shot through his skull. Although it destroyed the left lobe of his brain, he miraculously survived. However, after he recovered, his friends claimed he was “no longer Gage.” He could not stick to plans, uttered “the grossest profanity” and showed “little deference for his fellows.”

• In 2011, Howard Snitzer, 54, survived 96 minutes without a heartbeat after suffering a heart attack. During the time after his sudden collapse outside a Minnesota grocery store, first responders refused to give up, resulting in the longest-ever resuscitation outside of a hospital. Even more amazing, Snitzer is the first person on record to survive so long without a heartbeat and emerge without neurological damage.

• A woman named Sue Aikens survived a bear attack that resulted in both of her hips pulled from their sockets and tooth punctures to her skull. She treated her own wounds, returned to kill the bear, then waited 10 days in her cabin before receiving medical assistance.

• On duty at the Chernobyl reactor No. 4 when it melted down in 1986, Alexander Yuvchenko held open the door to the hot reactor (as depicted in the HBO series Chernobyl). Though he suffered massive radiation exposure and burns, he lived for another 22 years.

• When a Douglas DC-8 landed in Madrid after an eight-hour flight from Havana in 1969, the flight crew discovered 17-year-old Armando Socarras Ramirez, of Cuba, covered in ice and not breathing on the tarmac. He had hitched a ride inside one of the landing gear wells. Spanish doctors called Ramirez “the popsicle,” yet he made a full recovery.

• U.S. airman Alan Magee fell 22,000 feet without a parachute from a damaged B-17 bomber during World War II, surviving after he crashed through the glass roof of a railroad station in France. He was then captured and received medical treatment. He received the Purple Heart after being liberated two years later. He died in 2003 at the age of 84.


Solace in Sandpoint By Sophie Poldermans Special to the Reader My brain foggy from lack of sleep, jet lagged, mixed with a jolt of excitement and curiosity, I stared out the window of a misty-blue four-wheel drive. It was the late summer of 1999. My new host mother radiated warm smiles, making me feel truly welcome. We were on our way from the Spokane airport to Sandpoint — a tiny dot on the map, 4,687 miles from my home in the Netherlands. As a city girl embracing the liveliness and anonymity of a city, I had been a little disappointed at first when assigned to student exchange in a town with more green map space than cityscapes. I had set my mind on San Francisco and was sent to the countryside instead. As the green scenery flashed by, my mind started to drift. Despite my enthusiasm for starting a new adventure, a sudden sense of panic hit me. What on earth was I doing, so far from my family, friends and familiar surroundings? At barely 18, I was standing on the verge of growing into the woman I have become now. My host mother kept an eye on me through the rearview mirror. Then she pointed toward a bridge that seemed to stretch endlessly, crossing an abundance of deep blue water, its surface reflecting the streaks of sunlight. Several ridges of tall, strong mountains loomed at the horizon, displaying a stunning palette of greens, blues, purple and gray. Coming from a country below sea level I gaped at these majestic masses. I only knew them from pictures in National Geographic. Captivated by their beauty, but also intimidated by

the mysterious and ominous peaks, I was in awe. “Every time I cross the Long Bridge, I feel like coming home,” grinned my host mum. Throughout my stay, I constantly felt like I was starring in a movie, my mind rushing to keep up with all the new impressions. Once I had a date who, with a little fantasy, looked like Keanu Reeves in Speed. When he picked me up he chuckled, “Yeah, I just parked my horse outside.” When he indicated that he found cities dirty, polluted and overcrowded, I felt offended, but soon began to understand his craving for fresh air, cleanliness and the outdoors. The skyscraper silhouettes of the city blocking all view, started to crumble in my mind. My snobbishness faded like the pale tones of Venetian Vivaldi’s winter season, to pave way for the wide-open spaces applauded by the Dixie Chicks. I bathed in the warmth of the town; the festive holidays; the short, dark winter days; and I was astonished when my snow dances worked. I admired hand-crafted cabins on the waterfront set against the background of deep dark forest. The famous television painter Bob Ross would be deeply inspired by this magical place. I could almost hear him muttering the words: “Mmm… something is missing,” then swiftly adding a huge splash of bright yellow paint in the middle of a cabins’ window. “There. We need some light; some coziness.” For me the light had definitely switched on. I embarked on all sorts of outdoor activities. From hiking, kayaking and swimming to learning how to ski overlooking Lake Pend Oreille from Schweitzer and inhaling the fresh cold air

awakening my lungs. The icy, slippery roads were flanked by snow-covered trees that looked like giant snowmen. I would spread my arms and scream from the top of my lungs “I am the queen of the world!” I never felt so at home, alive and attuned with nature. Only decades later I learned that nature and spending a massive amount of time outdoors would calm the brain, slow down the prefrontal cortex and reduce stress effectively. Florence Williams states in her book, The Nature Fix, that nature makes us happier, healthier and more creative — the colors green and blue, of trees and water, being especially restorative. No wonder that when the COVID-19 pandemic struck it was plants that people bought, not TVs or computers. When the world shut down and everybody held their breath the skies above Beijing and Los Angeles were clearer than ever. It was to city parks, beaches and the woods that people were drawn. I traded my designer heels for hiking boots and found solace in the tiny bit of nature that is

left in the Netherlands. Existential fear, trauma and stress faded with every step on my hiking trail, not vanishing completely but feeling manageable and acceptable. A welcome break from heated political discussions and increasing polarization. I would watch Virgin River on Netflix because of the beautiful, calming nature scenes that reminded me of the Pacific Northwest. In this very pandemic I also discovered the benefits of yoga, deep breathing and meditation. Being a world traveler, I always found solace in the closeness of an airport. Now the borders were closed. All I had left were my memories and imagination. The Chinese word for “conflict” consists of the characters for both “crisis” and “chance.” We can employ this interpretation for introspection, reflection and discovering our true core values. Now that I am older, I crave for more space and green. I moved from the overcrowded city center of Amsterdam to the smaller town of Haarlem; yet, I long for more space, green and quiet. The pandemic has accel-

Sophie Poldermans finds her chi in Sandpoint. Courtesy photo.

erated this process. I sit down, hands on my lap, and close my eyes. In my meditations, images of Sandpoint and its soothing surroundings keep popping into my head. This is where I discover the essence of being and the ability to travel without going anywhere, as Pico Iyer states it in his book, The Art of Stillness: Adventures in Going Nowhere. In my mind’s eye, I find solace in revisiting Sandpoint, my second home. Sophie Poldermans is a Dutch author whose 2019 book Seducing and Killing Nazis became a New York Post and Amazon seller. She is the founder of Sophie’s Women of War (, which sheds light on women leaders in times of conflict, crisis and change. Poldermans is also an international speaker, lecturer and consultant on women and war, and women’s leadership advocating women’s rights around the globe. February 10, 2022 /


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February Parks and Rec. programming By Reader Staff Sandpoint Parks, Recreation and Open Spaces will be offering the following programming for the month of February: CPR/AED with Optional First Aid. For ages 16 to adult or ages 12-15 with an adult guardian. American Health and Safety Institute’s CPR/AED with optional First Aid is a general community course for individuals with little or no medical training, who need CPR/AED and or a First Aid card for work, OSHA requirements, school or personal knowledge. The course meets American Heart Association guidelines. Classes are offered on the first Monday of every other month. Register by Thursday, Feb. 3 for the Monday, Feb. 7 class. Located at Sandpoint City Hall Council chambers (1123 Lake St.),

the class meets 4-6 p.m. for CPR/AED and 6-8 p.m. for First Aid. Fee: $35 CPR/AED, with additional $25 First Aid option.

Open Gym Basketball for Adults and Youth. Open Gym is held on Sundays at the Sandpoint High School Gym (410 S. Division Ave.) and continues through March 13. (No open gym on Sunday, Feb. 6). Adults play 4:30-6 p.m. and pay a $2/player fee at the door. Youth (grades 3-12) play 3-4:30 p.m. for free. Schweitzer Own the Night Twilight Ski Program with Sandpoint Parks and Rec., Fridays and Saturdays through March 5, and Sunday, Feb 20 from 3-7 p.m. Half the proceeds from online Twilight ticket sales, made under the option to support Sandpoint Parks and Rec., will benefit the Youth Scholarship program. Fee: $20 at Tickets are valid for the

A few more days left to share the love By Ben Olson Reader Staff For those interested in creating or buying cards for the Bonner County Valentine’s Cards for Seniors event, there are only a few days to drop off your cards in time for them to be distributed around the county. The program, spearheaded by Donna Price, aims to collect over 1,000 handmade and purchased Valentine’s cards, which will then be handed over to the Sandpoint Senior Center, assisted living facilities in greater Sandpoint. Those who would like to donate cards can drop them at several dozen locations around Bonner County. A full list can be read in the Jan. 20 edition of the Reader, or by following Bonner County Valentine’s Cards for Seniors on Facebook. Briefly, those seeking baskets to drop their completed cards can find them at Bluebird Bakery in Sandpoint, the Post Office in Sagle and Cafe 95 in Ponderay. Back for its second year, the program was very successful in 2021. Price had set her goal for 200 cards to deliver to the 12 /


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Look for baskets like these at participating Sandpoint, Ponderay and Sagle businesses to deposit Valentines Cards. Courtesy photo. Sandpoint Senior Center, but was pleasantly surprised to notice over 1,400 cards were collected. “When you drop off your cards, please make sure to thank the businesses,” Price told the Reader. “Without them, I couldn’t get all the cards collected. Also, many of the business owners and employees added cards to the collection last year.” Price will collect all the cards from the baskets in time to deliver them on Valentine’s Day, so don’t delay in getting your cards together before the special day.

date specified during purchase. Bring eTicket QR code to a Schweitzer pick-up box located on the ticket window or Ski and Ride Center decks to redeem your ticket for the day. After your order is complete, there will be a link to your eTicket(s) on the confirmation email. Download the eTicket on your phone for paperless redemption at the pick-up boxes. If you will not have your phone, print the eTicket voucher(s) with the QR code and bring it to the pick-up box for redemption. Community Garden Plots. Online reservations remain open for a few 2022 Community Garden plots. The garden is located at Highway 2 and Lake Street, offering 4-foot-by-8-foot plots for $26 and 7-foot-by-7-foot plots for $31.50. Make your reservation on the Parks and Rec. website:

The Sandpoint Parks, Recreation and Open Spaces Department also acts as a clearinghouse to connect the public with other recreational opportunities in the community. Visit its online activity catalog to view listings in this category. Outside organizations and individuals wishing to list their activities are encouraged to contact Parks and Rec. with their program information at For Parks and Rec. program registration and other community programs, visit the website at, the Parks and Rec. office at 1123 Lake St. or call 208-263-3613. Panhandle Health District recommends following CDC guidance for slowing the spread of COVID-19: stay home if sick, reduce physical closeness when possible, wear a mask if possible and clean hands often.

Marcella Nelson named Ponderay Rotary member of the month for December By Reader Staff The Ponderay Rotary Club honored charter member Marcella Nelson as the December Rotarian of the Month, describing her as “small but mighty, just like the club she helped found.” “Marcella is at every meeting, every event. She is invaluable to our club with her knowledge and dedication to our community,” said club President Kari Saccomanno. “She also has the best laugh ever when you get her going.” Nelson has been a powerhouse for the community for years. Besides Ponderay Rotary Club, she currently volunteers for Bonner General Health Foundation, Pend Oreille Arts Council, the Festival at Sandpoint and Community Assistance League. She also supports Kinderhaven, Community Cancer Services, Bonner Community Food Bank, the Healing Garden, Panhandle Alliance for Education and the Panida Theater. “There is probably no part of this community that Marcella hasn’t touched somehow,” Saccomanno said. Nelson grew up on a working farm in Idaho. In the 37 years

she worked for the Idaho Department of Labor, she held positions ranging from stenographer to manager. Nelson also spent 20 years volunteering at the Greater Sandpoint Chamber of Commerce and nine years directing the Ponderay Community Development Corporation. Nelso is a founding member of the Ponderay Rotary Club and, since she has been at the club from the beginning, has actively supported its efforts longer than any other current or former member. She feels the club is creating positive change by supporting and believing in our local students’ higher education dreams and assisting nonprofits in the community through time and/or money. She plays a key role in fundraising, but her favorite role really lies in awarding scholarships to deserving students. Nelson has been involved in both the grants and events committees, as well as served as vice-president and is currently president-elect. Her dog India is her passion, and her favorite way to spend her day when she isn’t out helping

Marcella Nelson, left, with club president Kari Saccomanno. Courtesy photo. others. Nelson stressed, “Fundraising is my favorite hobby.” She is happy that she is retired now and can dedicate herself to that and the community. “She is definitely a force and definitely a Ponderay and Sandpoint icon,” stated the Ponderay Rotary Club, adding that it “is lucky to have Marcella as part of their family.”


BGH Foundation’s Heart Ball Because benefiting from quality health care should not be a matter of luck By Patty Hutchens Reader Contributor How many of us have sat in the Emergency Department at Bonner General Health waiting for an X-ray or scan in a trauma situation? It can be excruciating watching your loved one in pain and wondering if they will be OK; and, in many cases, time is of the essence when making a diagnosis. This year Bonner General Health Foundation’s Annual Heart Ball will take place virtually on Saturday, Feb. 12 with proceeds going to a new trauma radiology room allowing medical staff to diagnose strokes and trauma in a more timely manner and determine the next level of care for their patients. Bonner General Health currently performs an average of 1,150 X-rays each month, 40% of which are for Emergency

Department patients. Trauma radiology is the critical tool for diagnosing, evaluating and determining a patient’s care plan during time-sensitive emergencies. The volume of CT scans has increased by 73% during the past seven years, and the X-ray volume has increased by 50%, making it difficult to always provide immediate imaging in trauma situations. According to Daniel Holland, director of Diagnostic Imaging at Bonner General Health, the imaging for time-sensitive emergencies, which include stroke, heart attack and trauma, has grown by 30% since 2018. “Expediting a diagnosis is essential in determining where to send patients within the windows where lifesaving intervention can produce positive outcomes,” said Erin Binnall, director of Marketing and Community Development for Bonner General Health and the Foundation. Currently, the existing CT scanner and

BTAA hosts Valentine’s contest to help adoptable dogs

Nonprofit also previews free microchip clinic, Enrich Their Lives campaign

By Lyndsie Kiebert-Carey Reader Staff Romance isn’t the only type of love possible on Valentine’s Day. Better Together Animal Alliance hopes that some might have room for puppy love in their hearts as well. The animal advocacy nonprofit, known previously as Panhandle Animal Shelter, is hosting a Valentine’s Day contest on social media leading up to the pink-and-red holiday, encouraging followers to share posts about their favorite adoptable dog currently housed at the BTAA shelter. The animal with the most shares by Sunday, Feb. 13 will receive a special Hounds on the Town adventure. Everyone who participates by sharing BTAA’s posts will be entered to win a dog-friendly gift basket with toys, treats and more. For those afraid to pick just one pup, don’t worry: You can share as many of the posts as you want. “We have adoptables who have been with us for too long, and we want to find them homes,” said Paige McGowan, BTAA development director. “Our goal is to get more exposure for adoptable dogs. We’d

also love for more people to know about our work to keep people and pets together.” Aside from the ongoing Valentine’s contest, McGowan said BTAA is also hoping to spread the word about a free microchip clinic at the organization’s animal care center (870 Kootenai Cutoff Road in Ponderay) on Saturday, Feb. 12 from noon to 3 p.m. No appointment is needed. Additionally, BTAA is raising funds for its Enrich Their Lives campaign — a $5,000 fundraising goal that will be matched. “[There is a] need for animals in our care — especially the ones who stay with us for a while — to get extra enrichment, like toys, puzzles, games and special training, so that they are more adoptable,” McGowan said. The campaign will run through Monday, Feb. 28. Find the fundraising page at Those interested in participating in the Valentine’s Day social media contest can find Better Together Animal Alliance on Facebook and Instagram by simply searching for the nonprofit’s name. Also visit to learn more about BTAA’s mission to keep people and pets together.

two X-ray machines serve ER patients, in-patients and outpatients in the region. Because Bonner General Health serves a geographic region encompassing more than 3,000 square miles of rural mountainous terrain with a population of 60,000 people — and many tens of thousands more over the course of the course of peak tourism season — access to quality health care is essential to saving lives. This year’s Heart Ball is free of charge and will be held virtually from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 12. There are five live auction packages to bid on, including a trip to Nashville that will include tickets to the Grand Ole Opry, airfare and a whiskey tour; glamping at Moab National Park; a gourmet dinner for 14, including wine and transportation, provided by Pack River Store; a weekend stay at Schweitzer complete with lift tickets and a gift basket; and a stay at Casa Dorada Spa and Golf at

the Hilton in Los Cabos, Mexico, which includes a cooking class for two at Flora Farms, a gift certificate to enjoy craft cocktails at Acre and a $1,500 gift certificate to Cabo Adventures where you can choose your adventure. These items are already online for bidding, which will culminate during the Heart Ball. Also online is the auction for more than 20 desserts donated by local restaurants and bakers. The bidding for those will close on Friday, Feb. 11 with desserts delivered to the winners on the morning of Feb. 12 to be enjoyed by the winning bidders during the event. To enjoy this free virtual event, RSVP at and instructions will be emailed to you on how to sign up and enter your online bids.

Make-A-Wish Idaho grants wish to Sandpoint girl for college tuition By Reader Staff Make-A-Wish Idaho granted a wish Feb. 7 to cover college tuition for Cynthia, a 19-year-old Sandpoint resident with cancer. Cynthia has battled cancer since 2018, often receiving treatment at the Mayo Clinic. Cynthia’s lifelong dream has been to work with animals, and she is now enrolled at Penn Foster to receive a vet tech A.S. degree, so she can pursue a career as a veterinary technician and technologist. The wish will cover the entire cost of the program. “Over these past couple of chaotic years, I have reached a decision of what I would like my wish to be,” Cynthia wrote to Make-a-Wish Idaho. “Through many obstacles and unexpected turns of my health, my dream of working with animals has stayed strong. Animals have always brought me peace and comfort through my journey of dealing with cancer. It would be a dream come true to have college tuition

paid for to become a veterinary technician and technologist.” Make-A-Wish Idaho plans to grant 85 wishes during the 2022 fiscal year. There are currently about 150 “wish kids” waiting for their wish. Although the pandemic has slowed some aspects of wish granting, Make-A-Wish Idaho has continued to grant wishes efficiently, safely and creatively.

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Conservation: From the Timber Wars to Collaboration The deep roots of 20th century timber politics — Part 2

By Zach Hagadone Special to the Reader The first part of this article appeared in the Feb. 3 edition of the Reader. Find it online at ‘A national ownership’ In the Inland Northwest, the end of the 1920s saw many of the large lumber mills bought out by even larger corporations, including Oregon-based Weyerhaeuser, which acquired Humbird’s holdings in 1929. But by May of 1931, the Humbird store attached to the company’s mill in Kootenai, Idaho closed after 29 years, and by December 1931, the mill and store in Sandpoint shuttered its doors. Within the space of a year, the panhandle’s largest employer— which had once extended its influence through nearly all aspects of everyday life — disappeared. But a new period of collaboration in the forests was on the horizon, fueled by federal involvement. As the Depression wore on, and the New Deal programs began affecting northern Idaho, the word “conservation” began cropping up in the regional newspapers — and not as a derisive allusion to the “conservation theory” that animated the much-hated forest reserve policy of the Roosevelt administration more than 30 years earlier. 14 /


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The Northern Idaho News in 1932 reported on what Chief Forester Robert Y. Stuart had to say about “forest problems” in the West: “The basic problem, according to the chief forester, is one of maintaining the power of the country’s forests to grow continuously the kinds and quantities of wood that our economic life will require.” This was still a fundamentally economic problem. But, it was being framed differently than in decades past. According to Stuart’s report, “the complete denudation of 60 million acres of land because of fire and bad logging practices” had resulted in “marked impairment of the economic and social values which depend upon our forest resources.” Stuart believed that, “While policies and measures designed to promote conservation have had some effect on the balance, they have been insufficient to offset the powerful and relentless pressure of economic forces created by the pursuit of private profit.” Reports such as these suggest that timber communities throughout the Western U.S. were in some cases waking up from a decades-long hangover. What these communities needed — and what the nation needed — was some rehabilitation. One of the most powerful tools for doing so came with the Civilian Conservation Corps. While being one of the briefest of the New Deal

programs, the so-called “Tree Army” was arguably one of its most successful in terms of transforming Americans’ view of their forests and themselves. The Northern Idaho News of Nov. 3, 1933 carried a headline that would have been very much out of place 10 years prior: “Montanans Tell Views on CCC: Hundreds of Unsolicited Letters Give Praise to Conservation Program.” This program, in addition to doing its basic work of fire protection, forest reclamation, tree planting and infrastructure development, was also a doorway to easing some of the sectionalism that infused the debate over forest land management in previous decades. As the article stated: “Of the about 18,000 CCCs in Montana and northern Idaho this last summer, approximately 16,000 were from the east. And, to a large extent, from eastern cities. That’s a big influx of outsiders and it may be interesting to learn what are the reactions of Montanans to the plan which provided for such an influx.” The article went on to quote from a selection of letters received by the regional forester’s office in Missoula. As one letter “from a logger and a father,” whose two native-born Montana sons were enrolled in CCC, stated, “The advent of eastern boys entering western forests has broadened their ideas of the vast public domains

Left: Sagle loggers c. 1910. These are white pine logs. Right: The first logging truck in North Idaho. Photo taken on Trestle Creek between 1918 and 1919. James Campbell is driving and Dick Therien standing. Donated by Paul Croy. Photos courtesy Bonner County History Museum. which belong to and which are supported by both east and west. Many of these young fellows are going home with vanishing ideas of state or sectional lines and a broader vision of national unity of possession.” Likewise, the letter-writer said CCC work had a similar effect on Westerners: “Many of the people of the west living in or contiguous to the national forests have had an erroneous idea of the vast public domains [as] an encroachment on their rights, but they are fast grasping the idea of a national ownership.” This could hardly be a larger departure from the popular feelings in the region during the first 20-plus years of the century. Another letter described as coming “from a college president” struck a similar — though frankly less eloquent — note: “I saw a number of the boys on the train on their way from the camps back to their New York homes. They had fine color and showed lots of vigor and enthusiasm. When these fellows get back to the cramped living conditions in New York, they are apt to

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< TIMBER, con’t from Page 14 > become pretty restless there, and will want to return to the conditions which built them up physically, gave them an appreciation of the worthwhileness of honest labor, and some insight into the glories and beauties of [a] natural mountain environment.” Harkening to those earlier times of conflict over conservation, “an attorney” wrote: “I have always been an ardent advocate of the conservation of our forests and was greatly pleased when Theodore Roosevelt made it a major part of his program, although it was then greatly condemned by all those who wanted to exploit our forests and make easy money in a very short time without regard to the destruction of our forests to the detriment of the next generation.” These sentiments are almost entirely absent — and certainly were not expressed with such force and clarity — from the newspaper articles published in the days of the “forest reserve” question. “I think that that sounds very much like the mission of the CCC,” said Adam Sowards, an environmental historian who serves as director of the Pacific Northwest Studies Program at the University of Idaho. “It’s an attempt to rehabilitate the woods, to rehabilitate the young men who were there working to also help rehabilitate the economy.” And it worked. “The time these men spent doing these jobs — it’s just a few years, I mean, the program did not last very long, not even a full decade — it transformed those men not only physically and economically, but their whole sense of themselves and of the nation and of nature, I think really was in some cases radically transformed,” Sowards added. The presence of the CCC was especially felt in Idaho and more so in northern Idaho, which according to the Northern Idaho News, in 1933 had the most camps: 23 emergency conservation forest camps in Montana, eight in Glacier, four in Yellowstone, four in Washington and 52 in the Idaho panhandle. The effect this had on the public’s perception of forest conservation was underscored in a Northern Idaho News article in 1934, which bore another headline that would have been inconceivable in the previous 30 years: “Must Push Fight for Conservation.” That news item detailed the creation of the Clearwater River Valley Conservation League, which drew more than 200 attendees and delegates from Lewis, Clearwater, Nez Perce and Asotin counties. This organization, however, touched on another distinct strain of argument in favor of conservation, which had been quietly growing for the past decade: recreation, and its interplay with environmental health. “If sportsmen and game conservationists had organized and fought for preservation and conservation 20 years ago, there would

be no problems of overgrazing, soil erosion and fish and game propagation,” said Tom Lally, the Spokane chairman of the Washington Fish and Game Commission, speaking at the meeting in Lewiston. The new league adopted a “broad program,” including “the propagation and protection of all wild game and fish, protection and conservation of forests and mountain areas constituting the watersheds of the streams, conservation and protection of timber and forest resources, improvement and conservation of natural grazing areas, prevention of improper use and pollution of streams, and the fostering of good sportsmanship and fellowship among the sportsmen of the area.” Lally said that “Roosevelt has a real program for conservation,” and, “Last session with representatives at the legislature we gained more than in all the other years together.” Furthermore, Lally took aim at chambers of commerce and other groups that never lifted a finger to preserve game resources. “The outdoors is the only thing we have to sell outside buyers for spot cash,” he said. ‘A great national playground’ A curious event took place in Boise in March 1936, when retired U.S. Army Captain Burt B. Spilman, delivered a speech on the topic of economics, recreation and conservation in Idaho. Spilman’s talk was a refutation of another address given by well-known Idaho author Vardis Fisher. According to the paper’s report, Fisher had said Idaho was “finished” except for phosphate extraction and recreation. Spilman took exception to that, arguing that while “the state needs to develop its recreational resources and encourage tourists,” it was still rich in timber, mining, electrical power generation and agricultural resources. According to the paper, both men agreed that “the state should be advertised and tourist money should be brought to America’s last frontier in order to develop here a great national playground,” but Spilman took issue with Fisher’s inconsistent claim that Idaho had too many miles of highways. “Eastern tourists must have good highways in order to reach the recreation areas of Idaho,” Spilman said. “Tourists are not going to ride horses and drag pack animals into the back country to reach hunting and fishing areas.” At their basic level, Spilman and Fisher were expressing a complex of ideas not only about the notion of recreation and conservation as valuable economic drivers in themselves, but the best way to go about encouraging them both. According to Sowards, these ideas were rooted in a belief that there were places that represented “the pioneer past of America and they were worth protecting and left as is.” Some people at the time felt that these “prim-

itive” experiences — as they would call them — were critical to American identity. Sometimes called the Wilderness Movement, the idea of protecting landscapes for their own sake can be found dating back at least to the turn of the century — and certainly the National Park system established by Theodore Roosevelt’s administration was an expression of that. But, it didn’t take a central place in the wider conversation about conservation until the late-1920s and early-1930s. “I think the reason that you see it rising in importance [in that era] is because the pressure comes from the widespread access to the automobile and airplanes and backcountry airstrips that allow people to penetrate into these places and, on the one hand, there’s an opportunity to get into the backcountry and to go hunting, and then you’ve also got people saying, ‘I’m not sure we want to do that; we want to make sure we’ve got some places where we keep these machines out,’” Sowards said, pointing to the creation of the Idaho Primitive Area in 1931 as an example. “The 1920s and the ’30s seem to be the hinge on which this recreation boom swings, and I don’t think you ever see it going away after that,” he said. However, that’s not to say that recreation advocates were necessarily opponents of resource extraction. “That’s often been the case, but in the ’20s and ’30s era, part of the argument is

not against cutting trees or mining; part of the argument is against too much mechanized outdoor recreation and too many tourists and the need to preserve places where you can have what they would have called a more ‘primitive’ experience in the outdoors,” Sowards added. Just how radically ideas about forest land management had changed since the turn of the 20th century can be seen with the 1935 publication in the Journal of Forestry of an article titled “The Passing of the Lolo Trail,” by Elers Koch. A native of Bozeman, Mont., and one of the lead foresters in fighting the Great Fire of 1910, Koch bemoaned the over-development of backcountry spaces in the West — and northern Idaho in particular — sneering at the Forest Service’s version of “progress.” “It opened up the wilderness with roads and telephone lines, and airplane landing fields. It capped the mountain peaks with white-painted lookout houses, laced the ridges and streams with a network of trails and telephone lines, and poured in thousands of firefighters year after year in a vain attempt to control forest fires,” he wrote. “Has all this effort and expenditure of millions of dollars added anything to human good? Is it possible that it was all a ghastly mistake like plowing up the good buffalo grass sod of the dry prairies? Has the country as it stands now as much human value

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< TIMBER, con’t from Page 15 > as it had in the nineties when Major Fenn’s forest rangers first rode into it?” His answer, of course, was “no.” And the culprit, he argued, was the thousands of miles of road and communication infrastructure put in place by the Forest Service with the express purpose of suppressing forest fires, yet “the results in fire control have been almost negligible.” “Every really bad fire season has seen great conflagrations sweep completely beyond control, nullifying the results of every fire extinguished in the more favorable seasons,” Koch wrote. His solution — which would have been nearly unthinkable to suggest in the years preceding his article — was to leave the forests alone and let them burn as they would. In essence, greater conservation of wildlands could be achieved by not trying to “save” them from fire. Referring to the Clearwater River, Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness and Bitterroot National Forest Koch argued that, “Its special recreational values were probably greater than they are after thirty years of Forest Service management.” He later concluded, “[I]t is time to withdraw from a losing game before more millions are expended with little or no results.” Sowards noted that the editors of the Journal of Forestry recognized the unorthodoxy of Koch’s argument, and appended a disclaimer stating their awareness of how

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controversial it would be. Yet, he said, the article represented a “really interesting moment of reflection about the futility of being able to actually control something like fire in such a vast landscape.” It also ended up being rather prophetic, in that it hinted at future criticisms of the Forest Service for over-managing forest lands — to the detriment of everything from ecology to recreation. ‘Ransack’ Into the late-1930s and through the war years, Eler Koch remained an outlier. As the Great Depression continued, the newspapers became ever-more laudatory of the Civilian Conservation Corps and, to an extent, the Forest Service itself. Even better, the collaborative efforts engendered by the CCC’s work in the forests was an economic windfall at a time when money was tight all over. The Daily Bulletin in Sandpoint put some hard figures to that boon in a July 1936 article, reporting that business and industry in Idaho had benefited to the tune of $26 million during the previous three years of the CCC’s operations. That amount would have exceeded $500 million in 2022 dollars. The Northern Idaho News in 1938 described the CCC as “a sound practical national institution for conserving youth” as well as the nation’s forestlands — reversing the damage done by decades of “cut-and-

run” logging practices, protecting it from fire and other ecological threats, and carving out a “great national playground.” “Each year millions of persons use the forests and parks of the nation for healthful outdoor recreation,” The Northern Idaho News wrote. “Through their labors in developing park and forest lands for recreational purposes, CCC enrollees have opened up hundreds of thousands of acres of land for the use of the people during their nonworking hours and on vacations.” Beneath the triumphalism of the period, however, were the seeds of new conflicts that would only deepen as time went on. Paradoxically, the deep collaboration between the federal government, state and local agencies, and industry set the stage for showdowns over who and what belongs in the woods. Even before Koch penned “The Passing of the Lolo Trail,” federal forester Robert Marshall could see where things were headed, with industry beginning to exert increased pressure on public lands. The son of a constitutional lawyer, reform activist and conservationist, Marshall served several stints in the Forest Service, including in Missoula, Mont. in the mid1920s, and by 1937 had risen to the head of the newly created Forest Service Division of Recreation and Lands. He contributed the section on recreation in the 1933 National Plan for American Forestry, in which he presented a radical vision for the future protection of the nation’s woods. In the “Copeland Report,” so called because it was commissioned by New York Sen. Royal Copeland, Marshall argued that as much as 10% of all the forest lands in

A logger cutting a tree after digging it out from about six feet of snow. Photo by Ross Hall, courtesy of the Hallans Gallery and Bonner County History Museum.

the U.S. be designated as recreation areas. What’s more, he advocated for establishing the Forest Service’s millions of acres of roadless holdings as wildernesses or “primitive areas” and, even more sweeping, the federal government should fully regulate timber harvesting on private as well as public lands. “This is a socialist argument and certainly there was opposition to that but they didn’t look at him like he was completely crazy,” Sowards said. “In fact, that idea continued to be bandied about in the 1940s and early 1950s — the idea of getting it all if not controlled by the federal government then having a set of rules and regulations that would be abided by even on private timberland.” The debate over the Copeland Report

spilled into the postwar period and onto the pages of the Journal of Forestry. Meanwhile, the large mill owners pushed back, fearing their loss of discretion and control over access to federal forest lands. While adapting some of the Copeland Report’s recommendations to the New Deal — including more vigorous fire suppression efforts — Roosevelt shied from federal control of private timberlands. And, though similar calls for federal control continued, Congress, too, consistently refused to act. Marshall died of a heart attack in 1939, and so didn’t live to see what he’d feared would transpire as the U.S. exited World War II a fundamentally different nation — one that despite its burgeoning conservation ethos in the 1930s now looked on federal forests as industrial assets. “Governments, whether state or federal, can work most effectively and easily with larger concerns, larger companies, industries, etc., and so there’s an effort in the ’30s with the New Deal to write codes that guided working conditions and wages and production schedules and those sorts of things,” Sowards said. “Often the New Deal is seen as hostile to big business but in this case … in a large respect these legal codes get written by the industries themselves.” The upshot to that relationship was that small mill owners were cut out to the benefit of the big timber operations, which now had a much greater stake in controlling public lands. “If you are a large timber owner in 1900 you probably don’t have to worry a whole lot about it because you have control of enough timber for yourself to keep your mills running and don’t have to think about federal conservation in any sort of way,” Sowards said. “The 1930s start to be around that time when your own land might be cut over a little bit, you’ve got this depression happening and that’s when they might end up in some of these agreements with the federal government, and by the time you hit World War II things might shift a little bit because a lot of the private timber holdings had been depleted by then.” With the onset of World War II and the lessening of the Great Depression, Sowards said demand for raw materials — including timber — began a steady, then dramatic, upswing. Construction experienced an historic boom in the wake of the war, feeding on the massive expansion of suburbs around the country. While the amount of timber cutting off the national forests had been a “pittance” before the early-1940s, “If you go and look up timber harvest levels on federal forests you see them really boost after World War II,” Sowards said. “By the 1950s the Forest Service is a super-willing collaborator with private timber interests,” Sowards said, adding that the pro-Marshall advocates in the Journal of Forestry had lost their battle to convince the national government to take the lead in

conserving its own forests. “They just decide to allow private industry to ransack the public forests in a whole lot of ways. I think that’s how I look at it,” he added. From the “cut-and-run” mentality and fierce opposition to forest reserves as an unwanted “eastern” notion of conservation-by-bureaucracy; to the recognition of the practical benefits of preserving forests for economic, ecological and recreational uses; to the opening of the forests for “ransack” by commercial interests, the vision for public lands had fundamentally altered over the course of 50 years. Swinging from conflict to collaboration and back again, the contours of the politics and opinions regarding conservation would continue to swing for the following 50 years and beyond — deeply informed by the ground that had been gained and lost, often literally, in the past, and establishing patterns that would come to a dramatic flashpoint with the late-century “Timber Wars.” This article is the second part of the first installment in a multi-part series supported by a grant from the Idaho Humanities Council and sponsored by Friends of the Scotchman Peaks Wilderness. The first part appeared in the Feb. 3 edition of the Reader. Subsequent parts will be published in the Reader in the spring and summer. For more information on this series, visit

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February 10-17, 2021

THURSDAY, february 10


Sandpoint Winter Carnival: Week 1 Parade of Lights, live music and more planned for the first week of the annual event

By Reader Staff

FriDAY, february 11 Scott Pemberton O Theory in concert 7pm @ The Panida Theater A special concert featuring Scott Pemberton, with Justyn Priest Trio. See Page 21 for more information about the show. Tickets available at Doors at 6, show at 7

Live music w/ John Firshi 7-10pm @ Eichardt’s Pub

Live music w/ Baker|Thomas|Packwood 6:30-9:30pm @ Eichardt’s Pub Live music w/ Mike Wagoner 5-8pm @ Pend d’Oreille Winery

Sweetheart Bingo 6pm @ Clark Fork-Hope area Senior Center Help the center raise funds and enjoy bingo game prizes. Cards are $5 each or $20 for five. Call 208-266-1653 for more info Winter Carnival Parade 5:30pm @ By Sandpoint City Parking Lot The kickoff event for this year’s Winter Carnival, with zany floats and an awards ceremony immediately after Winter Carnival: Third St. Block Party 6pm @ Outside of Pend d’Oreille Winery Following the Winter Carnival parade, with live performances from Gypsy Divas, fire dancers and belly dancers, s’mores, fire pits, hot cocoa, desserts, soup and DJ music

SATURDAY, february 12 Live music w/ Jason Perry Band 9pm-midnight @ 219 Lounge A four-piece from Spokane focused on improv funk rock, funk and booty funk Valentine’s Day dance at Senior Center 1-4pm @ Sandpoint Senior Center There will also be a potluck lunch

Live music w/ Bright Moments Jazz 6-8pm @ Idaho Pour Authority Live music w/ Justyn Priest Trio 7-10pm @ Eichardt’s Pub Live music w/ Kevin Dorin 6-9pm @ MickDuff’s Beer Hall Live music w/ Chris Lynch Duo 5-8pm @ Pend d’Oreille Winery

SunDAY, february 13

Sandpoint Chess Club 9am @ Evans Brothers Coffee

monDAY, february 14

Monday Night Blues Jam w/ John Firshi 7pm @ Eichardt’s Pub Lifetree Cafe • 2pm @ Jalapeño’s “The ‘Flame’ Program: What is Love?”

Group Run @ Outdoor Experience 6pm @ Outdoor Experience 3-5 miles, all levels welcome, beer after Valentine’s Blind Beer Tasting 6pm @ Idaho Pour Authority Learn about beer styles, taste delicious brews and challenge your taste buds in this fun Valentine’s edition of our monthly beer tastings. This week: Barleywines!

tuesDAY, february 15 wednesDAY, february 16

NAMI Far North general meeting 5:30pm @ VFW, 1325 Pine St. Sandpoint Guest speakers Jon and Caty Pomeroy with Helping Hands Healing Hearts

Live Music w/ Lauren and Chris 7-10pm @ Eichardt’s Pub

ThursDAY, february 17

Sip and Shop for Sandpoint Waldorf School • 4-8pm @ Sandpoint Waldorf School A percentage of proceeds from 4-8pm will be donated to the Waldorf School. Bring in the family for dinner and support this important part of our community 18 /


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Welcome to February in North Idaho. It’s been winter for what feels like a lifetime, and there is no end in sight. Cabin fever, if it hasn’t already set in, is imminent. Luckily, the Greater Sandpoint Chamber of Commerce offers up an annual antidote in the form of the Sandpoint Winter Carnival, scheduled this year to run Friday, Feb. 11 through Sunday, Feb. 27. Due to the novel coronavirus, it’s been nearly two years since the last carnival, which will host a handful of its classic events in 2022. This year kicks off with the Weird Wonderful Winter Parade of Lights in downtown Sandpoint on Friday, Feb. 11 at 5:30 p.m., launching from the Sandpoint City Parking Lot. The Parade After Party is slated for the Third Street block immediately afterward, featuring dancers, fire twirlers, a DJ, snacks and bonfires.

The night of Feb. 11 will also feature plenty of live music, including Scott Pemberton O Theory at the Panida Theater, John Firshi at Eichardt’s Pub and BTP at MickDuff’s Beer Hall. Winter Carnival festivities Saturday, Feb. 12 include twilight and kid’s skiing at Schweitzer, as well as live music: Justyn Priest Trio at Eichardt’s, Jason Perry Band at the 219 Lounge and Kevin Dorin at MickDuff’s Beer Hall. Schweitzer will host a campfire in the village on Sunday, Feb. 13, and Western Pleasure Guest Ranch will offer sleigh rides, dinner and live music on two days of Winter Carnival: Monday, Feb. 14 and Sunday, Feb. 20. On Wednesday, Feb. 16, Lauren and Chris will provide the tunes at Eichardt’s. Find a full list of Week 1 events, times and other details at Read the Reader next week for more information on Week 2 of the Sandpoint Winter Carnival.


Honestly hilarious By Lyndsie Kiebert-Carey Reader Staff For comedian Phillip Kopczynski, storytelling lies at the core of making people laugh. More than that, it’s telling honest stories that has helped him earn a reputation as one of the hardest working road comics in the Pacific Northwest. “That’s really the artform of stand-up in a lot of ways, is just being honest,” he told the Reader. “Whether you’re a one-liner or whether you’re a storyteller, you’re still trying to find some form of honesty.” The Spokane-based comedian will bring his honest brand of stand-up to the Panida Theater on Saturday, Feb. 12 at 8 p.m. as part of the Phillip Kopczynski and Friends stand-up comedy show, also featuring Harry J. Riley, Ryan McComb and Rob Wentz. Family life tends to inform most of his latest content, Kopczynski said, noting that his teenage kids inspire a lot of his comedy. “It is a lot of me just trying to capture some last memories with them [at home],” he said, adding: “I’ve been married for almost 20 years now, and that’s kind of an oddity in the world of road comics.” The three comics joining Kopczynski at the Panida will bring their own backgrounds and experiences with them as part of their acts, highlighting what Kopcyznski

describes as one of the greatest appeals of stand-up: variety. “I probably never would have met these three guys if I wasn’t a stand-up comic,” he said, noting that Wentz is a recent Sandpoint High School grad who has been “doing really well in stand-up” on the regional circuit. “We’re all coming from … different walks of life. Most people, after they’re settled in life, end up hanging out with people who look like them and come from the same demographic and socioeconomic background,” Kopczynski said. “Most people look at their group of friends and they all fit the same Facebook algorithm. But when you’re in stand-up, you’re part of a wild tapestry of people, which I like a lot.” Despite that variety in background, one thing tends to tie stand-up comics together, according to Kopczynski, but it’s hard to define what exactly that is. “Once you get to know people, something happened that’s weird for them,” he said. “Each person is different, but it seems like a lot of stand-ups just want to tell a story to some extent — something unique that’s in their background, and it’s worth it for every stand-up to explore that.” Looking ahead to the Panida show, Kopczynski said he hopes North Idahoans will seize the opportunity to “laugh with your neighbors.” It’s a hope that Panida Director

Phillip Kopczynski and Friends stand-up comedy show to hit the Panida Theater Feb. 12 Veronica Knowlton shares. “The Panida gives our community an opportunity to spend an evening laughing, and creating new memories with family and friends,” she told the Reader. “We are a place to gather and disconnect from other outside pressures and responsibilities, even for a few hours.” When he first started doing stand-up shows after the initial COVID-19 pandemic shutdown in 2020, Kopczynski said he was able to witness just how valuable that chance to disconnect from everyday stresses could be. “You just saw the release,” he said, adding that rather than complimenting him on the content of his comedy, most people at recent shows have thanked him for simply making them laugh. “The ultimate hope is that people can have a release of whatever stress they’re dealing with, or just use it as a bonding experience with the people they’re with, and the community they live in.”

Courtesy image. Doors open at 7:30 p.m. and the show starts at 8 p.m. Tickets are $20 early bird at, or $25 at the door. Theater capacity is limited to 450 guests. The Panida Theater strongly encourages all guests to wear a mask, regardless of vaccine status, while enjoying performances. Find Phillip Kopczynski on social media or visit to see clips of the comedian’s past performances.

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The Sandpoint Eater Cabo and capers By Marcia Pilgeram Reader Columnist

Part luck and part pluck brought me here to Sandpoint more than 25 years ago. A group of investors hired me to oversee the guest services for their tourist train that would operate over the Montana Rail Link route. Sandpoint was the terminus for the Class II regional short line railroad, owned by Dennis Washington, a billionaire industrialist from Missoula, Mont., where I lived when I relocated here. Besides power (engines) and freight cars, most railroads own a fleet of business cars the executive management teams use to travel over their respective rail lines, often meeting up with government officials or lobbyists. The business fleet of a particular rail line has a distinctive look and feel, painted in company livery — the interiors paneled with mahogany or other richly burnished veneers. The cars have an authentic period feel, reminiscent of the golden era of rail travel. My catering business relied heavily on the Washington family, at their home, ranch or business entities in Missoula. The Silver Cloud was their first business car and, once put into service, I began to cater onboard the rail car, often situated on the static track at company headquarters. It was quite an impressive venue for entertaining. Mrs. Washington was an interior designer and oversaw the retrofit, and the Silver Cloud looked nothing like a traditional, tail-end business car. Instead, it was modern and sleek, with oversized mirrors, marble floors and wall coverings of kid suede and raw silk. 20 /


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The first dinner I prepared for Mr. Washingon on his Silver Cloud was a working dinner. He was interviewed by the editor of Yachting Today, who came to Missoula to interview him about his newest acquisition: a magnificent luxury yacht, christened Attessa. There were only a handful of mega-yachts 30 years ago and, at the time, the Attessa was one of the largest in the world. Sometimes I only had a day or two to plan and prepare these special dinners, which must have been the case that time, because I remember a lightning-quick trip to Spokane to procure veal for the scaloppini with extra-large capers I prepared that night. Locally, I shopped at Alfredo Cipolato’s Broadway Market for hard-to-find meats, cheeses, olives and capers. Some of my best memories took place in that store.

I’d lean against a red rubber barrel, filled with Greek olives, and wait as Alfredo expertly sliced cured meats for my antipasto platters while sharing the virtues of extra plump capers. I have a lot of great memories that took place on the Silver Cloud, too. I’m not sure how many miles I logged on that car — thousands, I’d guess, covering the 900 miles of Montana Rail Link track over some of the world’s most beautiful country. And even though I’ve only done a handful of MRL consulting jobs in the past few years, I still get excited when I see those familiar blue engines traveling down the tracks. Not long ago, I was saddened to learn the days of MRL are coming to an end. Soon MRL’s long-term lease will revert to the Burlington Northern Santa Fe,

Tapenade INGREDIENTS: • ¼ cup capers (find the largest ones available at a specialty store) • 1 cup pitted Kalamata olives (or pitted green olives) • 10 leaves of fresh basil leaves • 4-6 anchovy filets • 2 cloves of garlic, whole • ½ large lemon, zested and juiced • ½ cup fresh best quality olive oil • 1 tsp red pepper flakes • 1 tsp sea salt • ½ tsp fresh ground black pepper

and they’ll resume operations of their former line. My memory bank came full circle last week when I headed to Cabo in anticipation of a long, sun-filled weekend. Sadly, my travel buddy never made it due to weather-related flight cancellations. Nevertheless, the weather couldn’t have been more perfect for me, and I spent a lot of time walking off my winter weariness. The marina in Cabo was alive with colorful boats and hopeful vendors hawking myriad options for fishing or whale watching. But those weren’t the boats that caught my attention. It was a massive vessel, glistening in the sun and dwarfing all the others. And of all the places in the world that she sails, here she was, the Attessa, moored in Cabo. At least a dozen attendants washed, buffed and waxed

the luxury motor yacht. Try as I might, there was no way to get through the series of locked gates separating us. So I viewed her from afar and recalled the days of her youth and mine. Later that night, I dined poolside at my hotel and ordered the fresh catch of the day, totoaba Veracruzana, fried crispy on a bed of creamy rice and topped with a fabulous tangy sauce. Later, the chef came by, and I heaped praise on the fish and the sauce. He shared his secret for the piquant sauce: “Lots of fresh capers.” I don’t have access to any fresh capers, but the secret to my tapenade is lots of plump capers. So get the biggest ones you can find and whip up a batch of this delicious Mediterranean dip for your Super Bowl party.

Tapenade is a traditional dip in the South of France, Italy and Greece that usually includes anchovies. You can leave them out (but why would you?). Make this recipe your own by adding favorite ingredients, like mixed olives, pesto or parmesan. Store in the fridge for up to a week.

DIRECTIONS: Zest and juice lemon — set zest aside. Put remaining ingredients in a food processor and pulse until small chunks are visible (don’t puree). Smooth into a glass container, sprinkle on zest and store in the refrigerator Just before serving, swirl 1 to 2 tablespoons of olive oil over the top. Serve with crostini, baguettes or warm pita bread.

Makes about 1 ½ cups


The rock ’n’ roll of uncertainty

Scott Pemberton O Theory to play the Panida Theater as part of Winter Carnival kickoff

By Lyndsie Kiebert-Carey Reader Staff A single conversation with Portland musician Scott Pemberton makes one thing clear: The line between living everyday life and being a song-writing creative is blurred. “It’s what I do,” Pemberton said. “It’s my way of life — music is.” Pemberton’s band, Scott Pemberton O Theory (which is leaning into its identity as SPOT for short), will play the Panida Theater on Friday, Feb. 11 at 7 p.m. as part of the Greater Sandpoint Chamber of Commerce’s 2022 Winter Carnival. Music lovers can expect a show thick with groove, as SPOT’s style is best described as roots music that blends jazz, blues, grunge, funk and psychedelia — often, it has been said, in a single song. Improvisation lies at the heart of it all, as Pemberton, bassist Stefan Jarocki and drummer David Hagen all come from jazz backgrounds. “I’m OK with people calling us a jam band. Sometimes we are. Sometimes at the end of a song I’m like, ‘OK, I get it,’” Pemberton said. “But I never thought of it that way — it was more like progressive roots or jazz with all the rest of our influences in it, and it became what it is.” What exactly that is requires a listen — or two or three — to pin down. The uncertainty felt in attempting to define SPOT is keeping with the band’s name.

Pemberton described O Theory (“operator-belief theory”) as “an uncertainty theory” in which “you face uncertainty with either complimentary ideas, parallel ideas or intersecting ideas … but one of those things will get you through it. “It works perfectly in music, in improvised music,” he added. Thanks to this approach, no two SPOT shows are the same, even if the band plays the same songs. “All the songs are like frameworks, or skeletons, that then we dress and present however the mood suits. Every time, every song is different,” Pemberton said, adding, “it’s like going on the same hike over and over — you don’t have the same experience. It’s a different experience every time. The weather is different, your mood is different, the person you’re hiking with is different, or you’re alone, or it’s raining.” Pemberton’s work has drawn comparisons to famed guitarist Jimi Hendrix thanks to his dedication to the instrument — a comparison Pemberton finds flattering, since he believes Hendrix was “making the music, not playing the songs.” “I’m honored by the comparison for sure, and I think one thing he was doing that I do is just

Scott Pemberton O Theory. Courtesy photo. always pushing — playing the guitar at the point of consciousness where … [you’re] improvising right at the front of your thought,” he said, adding later: “I’m taking different angles and concepts than maybe you’ve seen. Jimi did that, but I don’t do it like Jimi — I’m not playing behind my head or with my teeth or anything, but I’m trying not to be limited by the constraints of the instrument.” SPOT is brought to the Panida by Mattox Farm Productions, which aims to bring a wide variety of live music events to North Idaho year round. “These guys are great musicians, led by Scott, who is unbelievable with a guitar,” Mattox Farm founder Robb Talbott told the Reader. “Their music definitely has a good-time feel that is made even better by the energy and excitement they exude while on stage.” The SPOT show begins right

after the 2022 Winter Carnival Parade of Lights in downtown Sandpoint, making it the perfect party to follow up the carnival’s kickoff, according to Talbott. The gig is also the first of many sponsored by Vyve Broadband set to provide two weeks of live music across local venues during the Winter Carnival. As for the SPOT show, it’s a chance to see (and hear) Pemberton’s philosophy — on both life and music — on a North Idaho stage. “I’m in the long game as a musician and artist, finding ways so that it’s positive for everybody and sustainable, so you don’t quit,” he said. “Quitting is the only thing that stops you from growing.” Doors open at 6 p.m. and the music starts at 7 p.m. with opening band Justyn Priest Trio. Tickets are $20 for general admission, $10 for youth and children 5 and under get in free. Buy tickets at or at the door. Theater capacity is limited to 300 guests. The Panida Theater strongly encourages all guests to wear a mask, regardless of vaccine status, while enjoying performances. Listen to SPOT at

A snapshot of notable live music coming up in Sandpoint Jason Perry Band, 219 Lounge, Feb. 12

Justyn Priest Trio, Eichardt’s Pub, Feb. 12

Hot on the heels of his 2021 album Picnic Before the Apocalypse — which drew high praise from the Spokesman-Review — Spokane-based Jason Perry is bringing his funk-centric quartet to Sandpoint for a get-down session at the 219 Lounge. With a combination of soulful originals and high-energy covers of funk, rock and

Some of the Inland Northwest’s hardest working musicians will grace Sandpoint’s ears on Saturday, Feb. 12 when the Justyn Priest Trio brings its unique blend of funky blues-rock to Eichardt’s Pub. The trio is made up of frontman and guitarist Justyn Priest, guitarist and bassist Lucas Brown and Vinnie Nickoloff on drums. The group’s sound is a hodgepodge of genres, including blues, funk, rock, folk, country and more. Based on descriptions of the Justyn Priest Trio provid-

soul favorites, the Jason Perry Band will bring the heat on Saturday night, which also happens to be Day 2 of the Sandpoint Winter Carnival. — Zach Hagadone 9 p.m.-midnight, FREE, 21+. 219 Lounge, 219 First Ave., 208-, Listen at

ed by regional venues on their online platforms, the outfit is “electric.” As for Eichardt’s, the pub is promising “amazing guitar, vocals and vibe.” This gig is one of many brought to local businesses by sponsor Vyve Broadband as part of the 2022 Sandpoint Winter Carnival, which is scheduled for Friday, Feb. 11-Sunday, Feb. 27. — Lyndsie Kiebert-Carey

This week’s RLW by Zach Hagadone


While cleaning out the Reader office one day, we uncovered a paper grocery bag full of obscure books — most ominously related to H.P. Lovecraft. Among them, however, was The Outsider, by Colin Wilson. This quirky book, published in 1956, is a self-taught savant’s analysis of the tortured artist in literature and philosophy. Though never out of print, and translated into 30 languages, it somehow remains obscure but is well worth (re)discovery.


I know what’s going to be stuck in my head for at least the next week: “Chaise Longue” by Wet Leg, which is set to release its self-titled album in April. Based on the Isle of Wight and fronted by Rhian Teasdale and Hester Chambers, the band is a delightful blend of eccentricity, bonedry British wit and ultra-pure indie pop. It’s only February, but this is going to be on my list of best albums of the year


Danny McBride has well earned his reputation playing half-cocked raunchy screwballs, but with HBO Max series The Righteous Gemstones he makes his mark as a subversive, whip-smart writer/director. Focused on the dysfunctional Gemstone family of fictitious mega-church preachers, the series is over the top in all the right ways (including one of John Goodman’s greatest roles). The second season ends on Sunday, Feb. 27, which is still enough time to get caught up.

7 p.m., FREE. Eichardt’s Pub, 212 Cedar St., 208-263-4005, February 10, 2022 /


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Worst. Date. Ever. By Ben Olson Reader Staff

From Northern Idaho News, February 4, 1913

NO NEWS ON COUNTY DIVISION Local men who are keeping track of the bill for the division of Bonner county by the creation of the county of Boundary out of the northern half say that the bill is still in committee and there is nothing new to report. Hearings have been held on the bill, the first one being held about ten days ago, at which only friends of division, Messrs. S.D. Taylor, Mahoney, Sen. Defenback and others addressed the committee, according to reports in the Boise newspapers. The opponents of the bill asked for time, because of their unpreparedness, and when the committee arrived another hearing was held at which arguments were heard in opposition to division. Rep. Elliott claims that the bill will pass the house, but others claim it will not. A committee from Bonners Ferry visited Clarksfork and Hope in the quest of county division endorsements and claim to have obtained a few in each place. On the other hand, the sentiment among the farmers in the northern part of the county is setting against the division. They feel that it will increase their taxes without any material benefit in return for them. The general feeling, however, is that the question has not been discussed enough to be fully understood. As a Clarksfork man expressed it, they regarded it as a “josh” until a few days ago. 22 /


/ February 10, 2021

Usually when Valentine’s Day draws near, we take time to show our significant others how much they mean to us. This year, though, I can’t help but remember the worst first date in my life. Years before I met the love of my life, I was working at Hidden Lakes Golf Resort as a golf professional. I had worked at Hidden Lakes every summer since I was 15 years old and worked my way up from a kid washing golf carts to teaching golf lessons and manning the pro shop. Most lessons that I taught were either to older golfers who wanted to shave a few strokes off their score or juniors who hadn’t swung a club before. One day, to my surprise, my student was neither. Rather, a beautiful blue-eyed woman appeared with a set of clubs and I felt my heart flutter. We’ll call her Annie. To say I was smitten with Annie is putting it lightly. She was easy to talk to and had a smile that could launch a thousand ships. I gazed at her like a puppy. I was only 21 at the time, filled with the baseless confidence we seem to have at that age. I walked her to her car after the lesson and, suddenly, before I knew what was coming out of my mouth, asked if she ever wanted to go “get a drink or something.” I didn’t often ask people out cold like that, but I was encouraged by her secret smile throughout the lesson. Her forehead wrinkled and she smiled again, but shook her head and told me she wasn’t really interested in dating anyone. She was gracious about it, and let me down like the pup I was. I could have been humble and accepted defeat, but I pushed the issue, asking in my faux smooth way if we could see each other sometime. “You know, your zipper is down,” she said, pointing to my khakis. I looked down and saw, to my horror, my fly was indeed down and a bit of my polo golf shirt tail sticking out for all to see. She got into her car right when I realized the zipper must’ve been down for the entire 40-minute lesson. She drove away as I stood there blushing like an idiot. About a week later, I mustered my courage

STR8TS Solution

and called her. I asked her again if she’d like to hang out. I said we could go out on the boat, have dinner at Bottle Bay. This time, to my surprise, she said, “Sure,” and I hung up feeling like I had landed a double backflip. The day of the date came around and I was well prepared. I shined up the boat and filled it with gas, then picked her up in Hope for our “date.” We motored around for an hour or so, stopping to drink some beers and share stories about our lives. The more we talked, the more I grew smitten with her. I learned she was 10 years older than me and had a professional job that put her way out of my league. Maybe it was my unfounded confidence, or that first lesson when my zipper was down that amused her, but I got the feeling she might like me, too. We then drove the boat over to Bottle Bay for dinner. While idling into the visitor dock, the beers swimming in my head, she asked if I could explain how to dock a boat. With a pompous air, I went through the motions of boat angles and throttle positions, then, when just about perfect, I said, “Now, when you’re in position, just tap the throttle in reverse and...” I lost my footing and landed with my hand on the throttle, pinning it all the way forward. The boat lunged ahead, the bow rising in the air. It went up and over the dock, teetering carefully on its hull for a moment before groaning back down into the slip. It landed like the sound of failure. I scrambled off the boat and tied off as fast as possible, head down and red-faced again. Again, Annie was gracious. She only laughed at our little misadventure and deftly stepped onto the dock with a, “Well that was interesting,” kind of whistle. We walked up to the restaurant and I heard a round of applause coming from the dining deck. Looking up, I realized with even more shame that the entire restaurant had watched me crash the boat onto the dock and they were now clapping at my nautical “mastery.” I replied with my head down, hand in the air to acknowledge my status as an idiot. Undaunted, I led the way to the bar, where I saw a dog lying there sleeping. I bent down and said something goofy, patting him on the head, but the pooch suddenly sprang up, yelped and

Sudoku Solution

ran from me at top speed down the beach. His forlorn yelping could be heard across the bay. “What the hell did you do that for?” the bartender yelled at me, running after the dog. “He has issues, you know.” “Sorry!” I called after him. On cue, every head from the applause section of the dining room turned and looked at me, first the boat crasher now somehow abusing some poor dog. Their disdain for me was as thick as their porterhouse steaks. “Boy, you’re really on a roll,” Annie said, with another laugh. She seemed to be enjoying the unfolding tragedy. Later, at our table, after most of the heat died down, a server quietly slipped me a note as we worked on after-dinner beers. I read the note and blushed again, prompting my date to ask what it said. I didn’t want to tell her, but she managed to steal it from me and read it aloud: “Please watch your language. There are children here.” I hadn’t remembered swearing loudly on the deck, but apparently I had, because looking around I saw several purposeful glares. “Fuck that,” Annie hooted, and we laughed like the last people on the Titanic, riding it down without a care. We managed to pay the bill and motor out from the dock without any more incidents, but when I dropped her off in Hope for the end of our date, I leaned in for a kiss and winced as she turned away, pushing me back gently. “Friends,” she said, graciously. “We’re just friends, right? I told you that before, right? I hope you don’t think I was leading you on or anything... I’m like 10 years older than you.” I nodded, crushed, and accepted the consolation hug from her. During the course of the date I had smashed the boat into the dock, unnecessarily upset a poor dog and our server asked me to stop swearing at the dinner table, only to have my attempted kiss rebuffed at the end. Driving away, I winced again, realizing I still had three golf lessons to complete with her. I looked down at my lap in shame, noticing one more thing: My zipper was down. Worst. Date. Ever.

Crossword Solution

By Bill Borders



Laughing Matter

Solution on page 22

Solution on page 22




Woorf tdhe Week [adjective] 1. engaged in or having the power of flight.

“Bats, nature’s only volant mammals, often get a bad rap.” Corrections: In last week’s “Dear Readers,” I accidentally flip-flopped my comment about Groundhog Day. The little woodchuck actually did see his shadow, and we’re in store for more winter. Yay! —BO

If you’re a circus clown, and you have a dog that you use in your act, I don’t think it’s a good idea to also dress the dog up like a clown, because people see that and they think, “Forgive me, but that’s just too much.”

1. Flexible mineral 5. Figures 9. To vex 13. Smell 14. Choose by voting 16. Comply with 17. Charity 18. African language 19. Harvest 20. Varieties 22. Protocol 24. Rectum 26. Nymph 27. Piece 30. Horse sounds 33. Staggering 35. Anoint (archaic) 37. French for “Friend” 38. Russian emperors 41. Cover 42. Make a parody of 45. Reckoning 48. Exert vigorously 51. Environmental science 52. Type of wheat 54. Blockhead 55. Sang for somebody 59. Play a guitar 62. Not under 63. Crown 65. A flexible pipe 66. Adjutant 67. Prevent legally

Solution on page 22 68. Type of sword 69. Trudge 70. Sort 71. A musical pause

DOWN 1. Protective ditch 2. Lazily 3. Countryman 4. Insecticide 5. Cotillion girl 6. Wings 7. After ninth 8. Works

9. Alien 10. Foment 11. Chair 12. Hoopla 15. A Canadian winter hat 21. Very 23. Murres 25. Narrow opening 27. “Oh my!” 28. Backsides 29. N N N N 31. Green chalcedony 32. Hoisting device 34. Muzzle 36. Jittery 39. Regret

40. Religious offshoot 43. Commanded 44. Roman deity 46. Scatters seeds 47. Slide 49. Angry 50. Naturist 53. Substantial 55. A cleansing agent 56. Wicked 57. Start over 58. Let go 60. Functions 61. Encounter 64. Mandrill

February 10, 2021 /


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