M A G A Z I N E
EVERYWHERE IN OUR LIVES
Interview with Songwriter Charley Packard, In the Footsteps of Photographer Dorothea Lange, End of the Coldwater Creek Era, On the Pacific Northwest Trail, Artist Karen Robinson, Ethanâ€™s Treehouse, Alpacas, Calendars, Dining, Real Estate ... and a trainload more
4/30/14 11:14 AM
For recorded information or to speak to the listing agent, call 208.449.0071 and use the 5-digit property code.
Lakeside retreat with 3 living areas, 2 master suites, and lake views from almost every vantage point inside this home. Outside, there’s room for a full RV set up, potential for a shop, and privacy on over 1 acre. At the shoreline you’ll find a rare low bank sandy beach in its own cove with 159 front feet. #13001 $875,000 Call Alison Murphy, 208.290.4567
Overlooking the river and the mountains, you’ll find a stunning, custom-built home on 12+ acres. Inside the main home, style and function define the living spaces. One of the most striking features is the abundance of wood windows in every room. A second home, or shop is situated nearby. Property could be split. #12971 $549,900 Call Alison Murphy, 208.290.4567
Pend Oreille River. 2.95 acres. 544’ frontage feet. Cabin, shop, bunk house. Drilled well, septic system. Beautiful setting with cedar trees, pine trees. A creek too. Private setting. Call Carlene Peterson, 208.290.5700
Custom 4,600+ SF 4 bed, 3.5 bath equestrian home on 8 acres. Tile and wood floors. Lake and mountain views. Formal dining, gourmet kitchen. 3 fireplaces. Gardens, fenced yard, 4-car garage. 3-stall barn with frost-free water, loft and tack room, pasture, camera system. #13151 $529,500 MLS#20133138 Call Susan Moon, 208.290.5037
The Best of North Idaho! 1,100 ft. of Pack River frontage with 22 acres, treed, mostly usable land. Several good building sites, power & phone nearby and area of good wells. Outdoorsman’s paradise for fishing, snowmobiling, snowshoeing or just hiking. Wonderful Cabinet Mountain views. #14381 $185,000 MLS#20140635 Call Susan Moon, 208.290.5037
Holiday Shores Condo in Hope. Top floor, two bed, 2 bath, plus loft, 1-car garage. Newly remodeled. Hardwood floors and tile. Granite counters, stainless steel appliances, specialty lighting. Gas fireplace, central air conditioning. Deck. Lake views. Dock, swimming area. #15821 $349,500 MLS#20132833 Call Susan Moon, 208.290.5037
The Ranch on Meadow Creek! Quality Custom Dovetail Log Home. Creeks/Springs. Well. Very Private. 157 Acres Surrounded by USFS. Abundant Wildlife. Alternative Energy. Open Pastures. Big Timber. Two Barns. Two Shops. Easy Access. Quality Lifestyle! McGinnisValleyRanch.com #11261 $899K Karen Battenschlag, 208.610.4299
Stunning Panoramic Views of Lake Pend Oreille! Lakeside Cabin with Private waterfront in gated community! Quality Custom Finishes! Gourmet Kitchen, Granite, Hardwood, Custom Cabinets, Spacious Master, Sleeps 8. Immaculate Decking, Fire Pit, and New Dock System! In Beautiful Bayview! #15661 $775K Karen Battenschlag, 208.610.4299
Ready to build, 10 minutes to town with amazing views. This 5-acre parcel has huge mountain views, peek-a-boo lake views, power at the cleared building site, well and driveway are in with easy access off a county road and less than a mile to the main highway. #13511 $88,900 MLS#20140639 Call Bonnie Chambers, 208.946.7920
Unique Waterfront Property! Quality log home on beautiful waterfront acreage includes a dock on 836 feet of level private sandy shoreline. Located on 25.6 acres of a mixture of trees and fenced/cross-fenced, self-irrigated pasture; plus 34 x 36 barn and 30 x 36 shop building with side lean-tos. Custom log home features Brazilian ironwood, cypress and local slate flooring, cathedral ceilings, gourmet kitchen, rock fireplace, master loft suite, and wraparound deck. Adjacent to government land. Additional adjoining waterfront acreage available. #12201 $950,000 Bill Schaudt, 208.255.6172
www.LakesideAtSagleTrail.com Custom waterfront home with 150’+ of shoreline on a sheltered waterway at Lake Pend Oreille. Desirable floor plan with main floor master suite, many upgrades throughout, lighted dock with boat lift and large decks for entertaining. #14971 $699,000 Cindy Bond, 208.255.8360
© MMVII Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Claude Monet’s “Red Boats at Argenteuil,” used with permission. Sotheby’s International Realty® is a licensed trademark to Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates, Inc. An Equal Opportunity Company. Equal Housing Opportunity. Each Office Is Independently Owned And Operated, Except Offices Owned And Operated By NRT Incorporated. Coeur d’Alene office: 208-667-1551, 221 E. Sherman Ave., Coeur d’Alene, ID 83814. Sandpoint office: 208-263-5101, 200 Main St., Sandpoint, ID 83864.
001-2,123,124Coverpages.indd 2 2 TSIRFullPageSum2014_final.indd
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SA NDP O IN T MA G A Z IN E
S U M M E R 2 0 1 4 , Vol . 2 4 , N o . 2
All about the iron horse that gallops steadily through the area: train history, saving our depot, the Amtrak experience, railfans, coal and oil, train dangers 33
Ethan and His Treehouse
Pictured in History
A Tale of Two Rivers
61 67 73 76
Almanac Calendar Interview Charley Packard Photo Essay Real Estate
Sir Edmund Hillary visits Sunnyside and the Hawkins family in 1981 Quest Aircraft Company spreads its wings as the KODIAK gains popularity Artist and naturalist Karen Robinson paints what she loves
10 23 27 90 98
Modern Barn Raising: Barn-to-Home Relocating: Family Case Studies Recycled Buildings: Labors of Love Marketwatch: News and Market Trends
His bicycle-powered elevator goes viral as worldwide interest spreads
After decades of change, the Kootenai and Clark Fork are being reclaimed
Natives and Newcomers Lodging Eats & Drinks Dining Guide Sandpoint of View
98 103 107 112
115 120 121 132 138
Alpacas The “other camelid” figures large in local agriculture Blazing a Trail in the Panhandle
Hiking the Pacific Northwest Trail. PLUS: Wilderness, 50 years later
Losing Coldwater Creek Major employer – and contributor Among the Kalispels Excerpt from “Inland Salish Journey” In the Footsteps of Dorothea Lange The search to find Bonner County families photographed in 1939
Along with freight of all types, trains bring something else to our town every day: an exotic sort of art. Spraypainted graffiti is common on trains passing through and inspired art director Laura Wahl’s choice for our cover type font for “TRAINS.”
On the cover: Keokee staffers Katie Kosaya and husband Ben Robinson teamed up at one of their favorite walking spots, Dog Beach, along with dog Sam, to capture this image of Lake Pend Oreille and its iconic train bridge – with a train on it, of course. See trains cover package of stories beginning on page 81.
On this page: Marie-Dominique Verdier combined two photos to come up with this striking photo illustration, an almost otherworldly view of the same trestle that appears on the cover.
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Ethan Schlussler captured this image through multiple exposures of his treehouse – the one with the humanpowered bicycle elevator. SEE STORY, PAGE 33
editor’s note Think being a magazine editor is glamorous? Not when you work until 4 a.m. peering at the computer screen through bleary eyes – in sweatpants. No, that’s not glamorous. The best part of my job is meeting people I wouldn’t otherwise normally meet, like Ethan Schlussler. This talented young man built a treehouse with a bicycle elevator. Yep, a bicycle, and he let me ride it up and down – thrilling but still not glamorous. This issue has so much good editorial, I feel giddy just writing about it: Carrie Scozzaro and Doug Marshall following famed Great Depression photographer, Dorothea Lange; those ubiquitous trains filling a huge cover story package; Sir Edmund Hillary pictured in history; the Pacific Northwest Trail in our neck of the woods; Quest and its way-cool KODIAK. And much more, as the boss likes to say. But, here’s a challenge and a little contest a la “Where’s Waldo.” I slipped my dog, Beau, a North Idaho hound terrier, as I refer to him, in a photo herein. First one to tell me where gets a prize, a night in my camping cabin (when that Ethan guy finishes it). –B.J.G. Sandpoint Magazine is published twice yearly, in May and November, by Keokee Co. Publishing, Inc., 405 Church St., Sandpoint, ID 83864. Phone: 208-263-3573 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Publisher Chris Bessler Editor Billie Jean Gerke Assistant Editor Beth Hawkins Advertising Director Clint Nicholson
CONTRIBUTORS Terri Casey Myers is a snowbird who sum-
mers in Hope and winters in Florida. It was love at first sight with Lake Pend Oreille the first time she drove over the Long Bridge in summer 1981 and decided to settle in Sandpoint. She wrote for The Spokesman-Review and then moved to Seattle and worked for Microsoft before coming back to town in 1999. Myers has lived in a few locations on the lake and writes here about her recent relationship with it in “When a Lake is More than a Lake,” page 138.
Molly Rivkin, who was recently evacuated from
Ukraine, contributed to this issue by accident. Forced to leave her Peace Corps assignment, she had been back in northern Idaho for less than a week when she went to Schweitzer. While riding the backside, she caught a chair with a “kind, interesting gentleman” – who happened to be this magazine’s publisher, Chris Bessler. Rivkin, an aspiring writer, was asked to share her story in “Ukraine
Leaves Lasting Impression on Teacher,” page 10.
a full-time art teacher, loves the educational aspect of writing. For this issue, she learned what makes Sandpoint artist Karen Robinson so unique; find out in “Knowing Nature,” page 45. And she capped a year’s research on photographer Dorothea Lange by visiting with some of the descendants of Lange’s 1939 Priest River Peninsula images; see “In the Footsteps of Dorothea Lange,” page 76. When she’s not writing or teaching, Scozzaro can be found in the garden or art studio. Art Director Laura Wahl Ad Design/Production Jackie Palmer, Katie Kosaya Office Manager Beth Acker Contributors Sandy Compton, Susan Drinkard, Zach Hagadone, Cate Huisman, Oriana Korol, Jennifer Lamont Leo, Terri Myers, Molly Rivkin, Carrie Scozzaro, Kevin Taylor, Aaron Theisen and Amie Wolf
©2014 by Keokee Co. Publishing Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is prohibited. Subscriptions: $12 per year, payable in advance. Send address changes to the address above. Visit our web magazine published at www.SandpointMagazine.com. Printed in USA by Century Publishing, Post Falls, Idaho.
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ALMANAC PEACE CORPS JOURNAL NOTES
Ukraine leaves lasting impression on teacher
Ukraine village scene, at left; Molly Rivkin with Ukrainian friends, above
The author is a 27-year-old Bonners Ferry native who volunteered for the Peace Corps in Ukraine from 2012 to 2014; she was forced to return home prematurely, in March, because of the country’s political uprising.
BY MOLLY RIVKIN
hen the call finally came saying the Peace Corps was being evacuated from Ukraine, I was frozen with a shock of sadness. The tiny village where I taught had become my whole life, and the language and culture had come slowly. Tears spilled as I said good-bye to my neighbors, who had become like family, and to my dear students. The peaceful demonstrations in far-away Kiev, the capital of Ukraine, were unexpected. They started when the famously corrupt president, Viktor Yanukovych, declined to sign a trade agreement with the European Union and instead accepted a large loan from Russia late in November 2013. Ukrainians took to the streets in Kiev by the thousands, demanding dignity, a better standard of living and human rights. Salnystia, my Central Ukrainian village home, was quiet, minding its own business. People were uninspired by the news from Kiev. They said, “It could be a change for the better or worse; we’ll see.” In January 2014, the protesters occupied government buildings, built barricades, and hurled Molotov cocktails and stones. The government responded with force; downtown Kiev became a war zone. Protests and demonstrations spread across Ukraine as February came. The country was alive with talk of revolution and war. Teachers held heated debates in the lounge of the village school. I knew almost nothing about Ukraine when I arrived. Becoming part of the village community and school was a steep and unforgiving learning curve. The villagers were welcoming but wary, unable to understand why I had left a “good life” to live in their village. They were kind and generous people, but with cultural and language barriers, relationship building was slow. I was invited by the over-zealous principal of the school but not largely accepted by the teachers. The months beat on, a slow, steady succession that became the
rhythm of my life; the United States was a faraway, fast-moving dream. As I sank into the village pace, Ukrainian culture started to puzzle itself together. I, who would always be an “other,” gained the acceptance of my students and neighbors. The language tasted less foreign in my mouth. The summer of 2013, a flurry of summer camps, passed in a blink and a sunburn. Fall descended quietly, loading the villagers’ shoulders with harvests, bending their backs, and tiring them from never-ending agricultural work. Village life is bleak and difficult, coupled with cultural alcoholism and quiet, crippling corruption in all aspects of public life. Despite the challenges of daily life, rural Ukrainians are lively, with a robust, eating-and-drinking culture and a close-knit family structure. Though I am grateful to rediscover my loved ones and the beauty of northern Idaho, part of me is still in Ukraine, in my village; my heart beats two different rhythms at the same time. The future of Ukraine is uncertain; Russia has already redrawn its borders. I raise my glass to the Ukrainian people and their Revolution of Dignity. www.mollyrivkin.blogspot.com
5/6/14 3:47 PM
A trip driven by passion – and caffeine
hree coffee nerds went to Central America last winter and geeked out on “liquid gold,” and if Rick and Randy Evans and their head guru, Daniel Gunter, have their way, all Evans Brothers Coffee customers will soon be buzzing from the best beans they could find on their coffee origin trip. At harvest time in late January, the three coffee-crazies visited El Salvador and Costa Rica to rub elbows with farmers and do a whole lot of “cupping,” the term for coffee tasting. “There’s no substitution for going to meet the people there and seeing the passion,” said Gunter, 29. “Passion rubs off on people.” His favorite part of the trip was tasting coffee at the mills, touring the farms, and learning more about the process. He also spent two days Randy Evans, Rick Evans and Daniel Gunter get up close with coffee as a guest barista in a coffee shop beans on a farm in El Salvador. COURTESY OF EVANS BROTHERS COFFEE at an airport in El Salvador. “I just get giddy when I talk about coffee,” Gunter said. Rick, 42, and Randy, 39, founded their coffee roasting business five Rick says the best experience was meeting the years ago, and although Randy had trekked to Central America before, farmers, such as the Menendez family of El Salvador this was Rick’s first trip. Along with Gunter, they “chewed the coffee” and Don Cegar of Don Pepé Farms in Costa Rica. Those – cupping as many as 36 different coffees in one day. Just like wine tastfarmers will supply most or all of the beans they roast ing, they often spit out the drink. this year. In fact, Evans Brothers may be one of only Although none of them are certified “Q-cuppers,” they would like to two roasters in the United States that will roast beans explore more of the world’s 26 coffee-growing countries, all centered on from Don Pepé Farms, a true micro-lot farmer. the equator, and further develop their palate for evaluating sweetness, –Billie Jean Gerke flavor, body and acidity.
For big birds, it is a game of thrones Who shall reign in the nest?
Bonners Ferry, it’s déjà vu all over
or watchers of two live webcams
This year, as of early May, the os-
placed on local osprey and eagle
again. A pair of geese settled April
prey had reclaimed the nest despite
8 and began hatching a clutch of
nests – and for the raptors themselves
geese incursions. If they succeed in
eggs – making it unlikely the eagles
– the Canada geese that are ubiqui-
hatching and rearing their chicks,
will use the nest this year. But, as
tous around here have proved rather
the osprey will provide a summer-
the saying goes, nature must take its
nettlesome. Geese are big and tough,
long, real-life nature show everyone
course – and that’s entirely unpre-
and last year at the osprey nest at
dictable. May the best birds prevail.
Sandpoint’s Memorial Field they took
Meantime, at a second webcam
Use these direct cam links:
over to hatch their own eggs while
on an eagle’s nest at the Kootenai
keeping the osprey out of the nest for
National Wildlife Refuge outside
Ospreys guard their newly reconstructed nest, as seen April 28 at Memorial Field
5/6/14 3:47 PM
Sunshine Goldmine The next generation
Taking the reins at Sunshine Goldmine are Darian and Matt Kinney, who learned the ropes from founders Pete and Paula Mulbarger. PHOTO
pproaching Sunshine Goldmine’s shop on First Avenue feels like a step back in time: up a flight of wooden steps, across a sheltered porch, and through a doorway in a storefront dating from Sandpoint’s early days. But misty, water-colored memories vanish at the threshold, as new owners bring fresh energy and vision to Sandpoint’s long-standing treasure trove. Indeed the quaint structure, originally built for the Humbird Lumber Company and later moved to its current location, served many different purposes before Sunshine Goldmine founders Pete and Paula Mulbarger transformed it into a jewelry store in 1986. The Mulbargers’ first store, in the Farmin Building, dated from 1981, shortly after the pair fell in love with Sandpoint on a trip through town from their native California. This spring, as the Mulbargers made plans to retire, they handed the jeweler’s loupe over to longtime employee Darian Kinney, and her husband, Matt, both 31. Darian had spent eight years in Sunshine Goldmine’s employ, learning the ropes and moving up the ranks to store manager, while Matt had been mastering jewelry and fabrication design under the tutelage of Pete Mulbarger. The Kinneys’ respect for the Mulbargers runs deep. “We’re keeping many things the same, like the fine-quality jewelry, custom and hand-crafted pieces the store is known for,” Darian said. Innovations will include expanding into gift items such as locally and regionally made pottery and art pieces, mixed-metal fashion jewelry, and men’s items such as straight razors and knives. Sunshine Goldmine makes a point of carrying American-made products, especially those handcrafted by local artisans, and they are careful to choose fair-trade and environmentally friendly suppliers. For example, they purchase supplies from a company that only uses recycled metals. Both Matt and Darian are Sandpoint natives. Two children – a 2-year-old and a brand-new addition born this spring – round out the family. The Kinneys also feel strongly about continuing Sunshine Goldmine’s tradition of giving back to the community by supporting organizations such as Kinderhaven, Angels Over Sandpoint and the Festival at Sandpoint. Learn more by phone, 263-2713, or online at www.sunshinegoldmine.com.
BY BILLIE JEAN GERKE
–Jennifer Lamont Leo
NIC’s Sandpoint Outreach Center helps bridge educational gap
ood things are happening at the
“Sandpoint’s outreach center is holding
Sandpoint Outreach Center. More
steady and maintaining classes,” said North
college-level lab science classes will be
Idaho College Outreach Coordinator Christine
offered this fall, just as the state of Idaho
Callison. “We have a great base of local
approved funds to expand programs; plus the
people who use the center.”
center proudly heralded its first associate’s degree graduate from North Idaho College.
Most notably, the school has experienced a demand for science lab offerings, and Callison is excited about the school’s addi-
Alyssa Pinkerton is North Idaho College’s first associate’s degree graduate at the Sandpoint Outreach Center. PHOTO BY TOM GREENE
tion of a Chemistry 100 class in Fall 2014. It will accompany the already successful rollout of the Biology 100 class currently
5/6/14 3:47 PM
A classic cruiser for a cause
ruiser bikes are really back in style now,” said Carrie Nylund, who found an ancient Hiawatha cruiser at her dad’s house several years ago. Friend Dave Parkins, a former bike mechanic who restores bikes for a hobby, assured her that he could refurbish it. To raise it to the level of art, they enlisted übercyclist Charles Mortensen, the artistic and talented brother of actor Viggo (it must run in the family), to give the bike a paint job as distinctive as those on his own bicycle and Willys Jeep Truck. The question remained of how best to use the fruits of their labor, so the threesome asked themselves, “What do we all like?” The answer was the Pend d’Oreille Bay Trail, a “walk in the woods next to the lake,” as Nylund describes it, on a sliver of land between the railroad and the shore north of City Beach. They’re not alone in having this affinity. “People are overwhelmingly enthusiastic about this trail,” said Nancy Dooley, who coordinates fundraising for Friends of Pend
d’Oreille Bay Trail. Hundreds of donors have already generated $400,000 to purchase a key section of the land for the trail, and more than 300 people showed up to participate in the first annual Bay Trail Fun Run last year. This year’s run June 8 includes an auction for the artistically restored Hiawatha with proceeds to be shared with the Idaho Conservation League (ICL). The
offered in Sandpoint.
bike is on display at Trinity at City Beach for silent bids until then. Anyone who would like to cruise in style while supporting the trail and ICL should attend the awards ceremony where final bids will be taken. Learn more at www.pobtrail.org or Friends of Pend d’Oreille Bay Trail’s Facebook page.
programs that lead to employment,” Silvas said.
Shown with bits and pieces of a vintage Hiawatha bicycle being restored to raise funds for the Pend d’Oreille Bay Trail are Carrie Nylund, Dave Parkins and Charles Mortensen. PHOTO BY BILLIE JEAN GERKE
roles,” she said.
“It’s a step-by-step process,” Callison said,
“The school can provide classes to help freshen
Pinkerton works at the school’s Bonners
about adding a new science lab, which requires
up a career, sharpen skills and connect people
Ferry Outreach Center and is continuing her
a fair amount of work including extra storage
education to earn a bachelor’s degree through
space for equipment. “It will give local students good options for science classes.” Now that the Sandpoint Center offers all the
The first NIC associate’s degree graduate
Lewis-Clark State College – which also offers
from the Sandpoint Center, Alyssa Pinkerton,
classes at both Sandpoint and Bonners Ferry
33, credits the fact that she didn’t have to
classes necessary to complete an associate’s
make the drive to Coeur d’Alene for classes. As
degree without leaving town, Kassie Silvas,
a wife and mother of five children, her time is
working with students to provide core classes,”
director of outreach for NIC, notes that it could
at a premium.
Pinkerton said. “It’s a great partnership.”
be good timing for community members affected by the loss of Coldwater Creek. “We definitely try, as a college, to offer
“I was able to maintain an identity as a student, mother and employee, and doing so
without commuting allowed me to fulfill those SUMMER 2014
“Both schools have been wonderful for
5/6/14 3:47 PM
Sandpoint Pedestrian and Bicycle Committee member Rebecca Holland with a “sharrow,” below, and a map of the Explore Sandpoint network that is designed to increase safety for bicyclists. See the full map at www.cityofsandpoint.com/MappingGIS. MAP BY JARED YOST/CITY OF SANDPOINT. PHOTO BY BILLIE JEAN GERKE
Bicyclists: Just follow the ‘sharrows’
he denizens who transit Sandpoint on nonmotorized rolling stock should soon have an easier time navigating, thanks to the new Explore Sandpoint network. The five, color-coded routes comprise about 12 miles of paved roads and link all the town’s major destinations – parks and schools, the library, City Beach, and even the fairgrounds. The network is the culmination of two years of work by the city’s Pedestrian and Bicycle Committee. Preferred routes are painted with large “sharrows” – a symbol depicting a bicycle with some chevrons – designed to remind vehicles and bikes to share the road. Bikes should stay away from car doors being opened and make their actions predictable, enabling motorists to keep clear of them. This spring, presentations in schools introduced some of Sandpoint’s regular bike commuters – students – to the network and rules for using it. “The more we use it, the safer it gets,” said committee member Rebecca Holland. Colored, route map signs will be installed in downtown this summer; funding is pending to install more elsewhere. Sandpoint High School’s industrial technology class constructed metal frames for maps to be posted at several points along the routes. The routes also link Greater Sandpoint’s bike trails, including the Creekside Trail along the bypass, the Community Trail from downtown to Dover, and the Pend d’Oreille Bay Trail. And this fall, a few
more miles will open as work on U.S. Highway 95 in Ponderay is completed: A connector via the Popsicle Bridge off the network’s North-South (purple) route will lead to a new path paralleling the highway north to Kootenai Cutoff Road. –Cate Huisman
5/6/14 3:47 PM
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5/6/14 3:47 PM
Fire chief to chase smoke no more
he son of a fire control officer for the Angeles National Forest, Robert Tyler, 61, grew up in fire stations. He got his first job as a firefighter right out of high school in his native California. After drifting northward and taking a break from the profession, he joined the Sandpoint Fire Department as a volunteer in 1980 and came on as a paid firefighter in 1981. Nineteen years later he became chief, bringing a degree of stability to a department that had gone through a period of administrative turmoil. His leadership has been marked by securing federal grants to update the department’s equipment and training staff how to use it. “The last 14 years, we have burnt every house that we could get a hold of
for practice,” he said. They also trained for water and ice rescues. Changes in firefighting during Tyler’s career have been significant: “When I first started (in Sandpoint), we had about 125 runs a year. Now we have 1,100,” he said. Equipment has improved enormously, too. Tyler saw uniforms go from canvas-type turnouts to flameresistant, Nomex turnouts that cost $2,200 a set. “It makes it difficult for a small-town department,” said Tyler, who believes
Fire Chief Robert Tyler on the scene at the A&P’s fire Feb. 6. PHOTO BY BILLIE JEAN GERKE
Sandpoint’s firefighters will always want more and newer equipment than the city can afford. The fire chief has no particular postretirement plans other than staying put. “We’ll stay in North Idaho. Our kids and grandkids are here,” he said. Tyler’s retirement is effective May 31. At press time, his replacement had not been named. –Cate Huisman
5/6/14 3:48 PM
Cooking up Christmas trees
p in the hills above MacArthur Lake, a distillery started cooking last winter. It’s no bootlegger operation; these giant stills are for trees. “We chip the wood, load them up into trailers … and then use Skid Steers to load them into the 2,300-gallon stainless steel cookers,” said Christopher Josephson, manager at Young Living’s new Highland Flats tree farm and distillery. Gary Young, owner and CEO of Young Living Essential Oils, and his new crew are still tweaking the process of extracting oil and aromatic compounds from blue spruce, balsam fir and ponderosa pine, among potential other species. “Our next project is to build a drying plant where byproducts of the trees, after distillation, will be dried and turned into recyclable material for packaging of our products,” said Young. Josephson also imagines using the
wood chips for compost. One byproduct, the aromatic water separated from the oils during steaming, is already being used. It’s pumped into three hot tubs, available for use by employees and visitors. No wonder Josephson loves working there. “From being in (the) auto body industry, metal fabrication, any other type of factory or plant, this is probably the best environment I could ever be in,” he said. “I go home smelling like a Christmas tree.” The essential oils are used in perfumes, soaps, food, incense and some use them as medicine. It takes an average of 250 trees, about 10 feet tall, to make 16 liters of oil, an average batch size from one of those giant cookers. Each batch is worth thousands of dollars. All of the trees are grown on-site, harvested in the winter and replaced
with saplings in the spring. Young Living offers dormitories and meals to people who want to participate in the winter harvest. They learn sustainable harvesting techniques and, in the evenings, get to soak in those aromatic hot tubs. –Oriana Korol
Welcome to The Bridge Welcome Home.
1123 N. Division St., Sandpoint SUMMER 2014
Christopher Josephson, manager of Young Living Essential Oils’ farm in Naples, stands in front of the condenser, an important part of the distillation process. PHOTO BY ORIANA KOROL
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onjure Sandpoint in the mind’s eye and it’s the view from the Long Bridge. It’s the brick facades of First Avenue. It’s Sand Creek and the Cedar Street Bridge. It’s the Panida Theater marquee, or the Granary Building rising against the backdrop of Bald Mountain. But it’s also its signs – artistic, colorful, hanging from awnings and planted on corners, announcing to visitors and residents alike all that Sandpoint has to offer. And Beth Pederson has painted more than a few of them. Pederson moved to Sandpoint nearly 40 years ago as part of folk duo Wild Roses, with Cinde Borup. They had been touring through the region – Pederson is a native of Richland, Wash. – and found their way to Sandpoint via Boise. With little else than the contents of their guitar cases, Pederson said she and Borup needed to make some money to supplement their musical careers. With experience painting a family friend’s fleet of dry cleaning vans, Pederson approached Gene Hayes, a longtime former Sandpoint sign painter, about a job. “He handed me a brush and said, ‘OK, paint this,’ ” Pederson said. “He could tell I’d held a brush before, and said, ‘Yeah, I could use some help. How about $2.50 an hour?’ I said, ‘How about $3.50?’ ” That was good enough at the time, and Pederson stayed on with Hayes (with some raises, of course) until the 1980s, when he moved to Oregon. Following that, Pederson opened her own shop on Church Street. In the early ’90s, she and Borup relocated the business to U.S. Highway 95 in Sagle, and, finally, to their backyard SUMMER 2014
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Sandpoint’s Home for Quality Kitchenware & Zwilling J.A. Henckels Knives! Beth Pederson, outside her sign-painting studio, above; and inset, an old and beloved sign from days gone by. PHOTO BY BILLIE JEAN GERKE
studio on the corner of Ruth and Chestnut, where it remains to this day. Nearly 40 years later, Pederson is still playing music, can boast of being the longest-running sign painter in town, and still hews to the same basic techniques; in an era of digital reproduction – and perfection – hers are one-of-a-kind, hand-lettered creations. “Just the physical motion of lettering with a good brush is what is really enjoyable about it,” she said. “It has a lot more character than any digital graphic does. It just has a more real feel to it, visually.” For proof, look to some of Sandpoint’s most recognizable signs: Ivano’s and Spuds, on First Avenue; the Bonner County EMS logo; The Little Olive Restaurant, on Second Avenue; the Cedar Street Public Market façade; even the routered, wooden Condo del Sol sign – all, and about 1,000 more over the years, were crafted by B. Pederson Signs. “Aesthetically, some people like the style of a hand-lettered sign because it’s fun,” Pederson said. “For me it is just more personal. It has a personal feel; it’s more connected with the business.” It’s also more connected to Sandpoint, which perhaps more so than any other local artist, has been Pederson’s personal palette. –Zach Hagadone
Making Chickens Nervous for over 250 years.
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Long Bridge Swim turns 20
t was the mid-1990s when Eric Ridgway was driving his daily commute across the Long Bridge and had a thought: “I’ve got to swim this.” Ridgway did swim the 1.78-mile length, with a couple of friends following in kayaks. News of Ridgway’s swim hit the radio waves, and the official Long Bridge Swim was born. Fast-forward 20 years to today, when organizers are expecting up to 1,000 swimmers to ply the waters of Lake Pend Oreille Aug. 2. In fact, it’s now the Northwest’s largest, open-water swim. “Little did I know this would grow into an event that welcomes swimmers of all abilities from all across the country – and the world,” said Ridgway, 53. This year, Ridgway handed over his executive director reins to Jim
Long Bridge Swim Executive Director Jim Zuberbuhler gets a lift from some of the event’s key volunteers. PHOTO BY BETH HAWKINS
Zuberbuhler, 55. An enthusiastic swimmer himself, he served as the event’s assistant race director for the past six years and initiated the swim’s philanthropic Swim Lessons Initiative five years ago to fund swimming lessons for local youth. Coordinating the region’s thirdlargest economic event is an Olympicsized effort. More than 200 volunteers come out year after year, helping serve food, design T-shirts, kayak alongside swimmers and much more. “It’s a team
effort,” said Zuberbuhler, who adds that the economic impact from the Long Bridge Swim is enormous – coming in third behind the Festival at Sandpoint and Lost in the ’50s. Looking ahead to the next 20 years, and beyond, Ridgway – who plans to continue participating in the Long Bridge Swim every year – only sees smooth waters on the horizon: “I’m confident the event will grow better in ways I cannot imagine.” –Beth Hawkins
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YMCA pilot program Fuels big dreams here
nce the final bell rings on the last day of school, many parents struggle to find ways to keep their children busy. This summer they’ll have a choice, as a pilot YMCA program returns to Sandpoint with a day camp for students in first through sixth grades. The program started in 2013 and hosted about 25 children at the former UI Extension on Boyer Avenue. It was a good start, said YMCA Camp Director Richie Withycombe: “The kids had a really fun time.” The location on Boyer turned out to be an ideal spot for a summer camp. “We had the forest and the creek, and the disc golf course, and a big ball field for games,” Withycombe said. “Plenty of indoor space as well.” Campers also used the SPOT bus to access City Beach and other area parks.
Organizers hope the YMCA summer program is a stepping-stone to a permanent, community recreational facility. The Sandpoint Area Recreation & Community Center group (SPARC) has been working toward a rec center since 2010, and the YMCA is a key partner. “The SPARC board commissioned us to start an expansion focusing on programming. And if that includes a facility down the road, that would be something the volunteer group would then work toward,” said Pat Estes, YMCA Inland Northwest Association youth sports director. Sandpoint Mayor Carrie Logan is a supporter. “The presence of the YMCA inspires that dream for our commu-
Doing the YMCA dance are day campers, from left, Jake Aitken, Morgan McClintick, Luke McClintick and Cassidy Aitken. PHOTO BY BILLIE JEAN GERKE
nity – a facility like the Kroc Center in Coeur d’Alene. That is what we hope will come out of the growing presence in Sandpoint,” said Logan. Summer camp starts June 16 and ends Aug. 22. Go to: YMCASpokane. org/Sandpoint-location.com. –Amie Wolf
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Ca l e n d a r
See complete, up-tothe-minute calendars at SandpointOnline.com
Sandpoint Farmers Market. Open-air market every Wednesday and Saturday through Oct. 11 in Farmin Park. 597-3355 7 Sand Creek Paddlers Challenge. Sixth annual canoe and kayak race, 9 a.m. from City Beach up Sand Creek and back. 263-3613 7 Summer Sounds. Downtown concert
series takes place from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. on the Park Place Stage, near the corner of First and Cedar. Sponsored by Sandpoint B.I.D. and the Holly Eve Foundation. 255-1876
7 Sandpoint Arbor Day Celebration. Tours,
sale at Lakeview Park and Bonner County Museum, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. 683-2387
8 Bay Trail Fun Run. Second annual 5K/10K benefits the Pend d’Oreille Bay Trail and Sand Creek Byway Trail. See story, page 13. 946-7586 13-14 20 Years of Music Making. Pend
Oreille Chorale and Chamber Orchestra perform baroque, classical, romantic and modern pieces, 7 p.m. Friday, 3 p.m. Saturday, at First Lutheran Church, 526 S. Olive St. 263-0199
14 Danceworks Spring Concert. Students’
annual recital, 3 p.m. at the Panida. 263-9191
14 Summer Sounds. Bright Moments Trio
performs. See June 7.
20 Relay for Life. American Cancer Society benefit at the Bonner County Fairgrounds. 20 ArtWalk. Browse local venues and view art during opening receptions for the 37th annual event, sponsored by Pend Oreille Arts Council. Exhibits remain on display through Sept. 12. ArtinSandpoint.org. 263-6139 20-21, 27-28 “Mary Mary.” See Hot Picks. 20-22 Anniversary Party. Pend d’Oreille
Winery, 301 Cedar St., hosts three-day celebration with live music. 265-8545
21 CHAFE 150. Sandpoint Rotary sponsors
annual benefit bike ride on a 150-mile route through Idaho and Montana - or opt for the 1/2 CHAFE at 80 miles, or the new 30-mile fun ride. CHAFE150.org
21 Get Your Groove On Summer KickOff Party. At Hope’s Memorial Community
Center, 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. 264-5481
21 Summer Sounds. Monarch Mountain Band performs. See June 7. 21 Battle of the Bulls. Annual bull riding,
barrel racing and BBQ contest at the Bonner County Fairgrounds. 263-8414
26 Yappy Hour. A tail-waggin’ good time! Bring your dog and enjoy a relaxing evening with friends and Panhandle Animal Shelter residents, from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Pine Street
[HOT HOT PICKS] [Hot PICKS
A comedy that’ll warm hearts The celebrated play “Mary Mary,” a Ron Ragone Production presented by Sandpoint Onstage, comes to the all-new Heartwood Center (the old Catholic church at 615 Oak St.) at 7:30 p.m. June 20-21 and June 27-28 (with a special matinee at 2 p.m. June 21). Endearing and funny, “Mary Mary” warmed hearts on Broadway and promises to do the same in Sandpoint. Directed by Teresa Pesce, the romantic comedy stars Keely Gray, Andrew Sorg, Scott Johnson, Miriam Robinson, and Ron Ragone. www.SandpointOnstage.com. Run (or walk!) for local children It’s growing bigger and bigger every year, and for good reason: Jacey’s Race, set for Sunday, July 13 at Sandpoint High School, allows the community to get out and support local children who have cancer or other life-threatening illness. Funds raised from the timed 5K or 1K walk/run go to the beneficiaries’ families to help with health care costs and other necessities, through gifts to Community Cancer Services and Bonner General Hospital’s Pediatric Department. It’s all followed by a carnival atmosphere with face painting, clowns and more. Tie up the sneakers and make every step count! www. Jaceys-Race.com. Best of all worlds It’s easy to please every member of the family on Labor Day Weekend with the Fall Fest celebration at Schweitzer Mountain Resort. For three days, Aug. 30 to Sept. 1, enjoy regional wines, hard ciders and more S USM UME MRE R2 021041 4
than 60 regional micro beers on tap! Live music will be playing all three days, plus arts, crafts and food vendors throughout the village. Kids will want to visit the Soda Tent, where they can mix their own flavors and create wild concoctions. Besides scenic chairlift rides and mountain biking, activities in the village include a zip line, climbing wall and more. www. Schweitzer.com. Fundraising takes center stage Sandpoint’s historic Panida Theater holds a special place in the hearts of residents and visitors alike. The downtown venue is home to numerous plays, concerts, ballet performances and so much more. Now there’s a great event to “give back” to the theater that gives so much! It’s called the Autumn Fest Auction, held Sept. 20 in the Ponderay Events Center. Enjoy live and silent auctions, along with beer and wine tastings, hors d’oeuvres, desserts and live entertainment. All proceeds go to the Panida Theater’s Restoration Fund – to help keep this local treasure its very best! www.Panida.org. Green Bluff’s festive vibe – at home! Sandpoint’s first U-pick Pumpkin Patch at Hickey Farms, located along Highway 200 on the outskirts of town (just past Sunnyside and before Colburn-Culver), was a great success last year during its inaugural season, and opens for a second year of family fun weekends in October. Check out the corn maze and children’s activities, plus shop for local artisan products and homemade goodies. A wide-open pumpkin patch is filled with lots of potential jack-o-lanterns, so families will have a hard time choosing the perfect one! Stay tuned for all the details via Facebook (search for Hickey Farms and Sandpoint’s 1st U-Pick Pumpkin Patch). S ASN AN DD PP OO IN I NTT M MAAG GA Z I N NEE
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The 32nd annual Festival at Sandpoint, held in a casual atmosphere at Memorial Field on Lake Pend Oreille, creates a concert experience without equal. The eight performance dates fall over two weeks from August 7-17. Buy a season pass or individual tickets by calling 265-4554, toll-free 888-265-4554, or go to www.FestivalatSandpoint.com. Gates open at 6 p.m. Thursdays and Fridays, and 4:30 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. Thursday, Aug. 7 The Head and The Heart With Americana roots and gorgeous harmonics, The Head and the Heart, Seattle’s indie folk-rock band, formed in 2009. Now with two successful albums under their belt, the six-piece group is quickly becoming a sensation.
28 Summer Sounds. Folk Remedy per-
forms. See June 7.
29 Schweitzer Summer Celebration.
Summer season opens with free chairlift rides, live music and family activities. Schweitzer.com. 255-3081
4 Fourth of July Celebration. Lions Club parade downtown in the morning, afternoon stage performances at City Beach and fireworks over the lake at dusk. 263-4118
forms. See June 7.
wooden boats, water-themed activities, contests and more along Sand Creek. Sandpoint.org/boatfestival. 255-1876
12 Great Sandpoint Flatwater Regatta.
Sandpoint Rotary hosts fifth annual canoe and kayak races up and down Sand Creek. 946-6079
12 Summer Sounds. Music Conservatory of Sandpoint ensemble performs. See June 7.
Nickel Creek is an American progressive acoustic music trio that re-formed in 2014 after going on hiatus in 2007. The Grammy Award-winning band’s new album “A Dotted Line” coincides with their 25th anniversary. This repeat festival act wows the audience with upbeat tempos and bluegrass influences. Opening are special guests Head for the Hills and country duo Pear.
13 Jacey’s Race. See Hot Picks. 17 Festival at Sandpoint Art Unveiling.
Fine art poster unveiling at Dover Bay with live music. 265-4554
Sunday, Aug. 10 Family Concert: The Frog Prince Round up the kiddos and head to the festival’s Family Concert, featuring the Spokane Youth Orchestra conducted by Gary Sheldon. Fun activities for the entire family including the Instrument Petting Zoo, an Animal Petting Zoo and Birds of Prey Northwest program help round out the always-popular concert. Thursday, Aug. 14 Trombone Shorty with Galactic Trombone Shorty, aka Troy Andrews, is a trombone and trumpet player from New Orleans who works in jazz, funk and rap music. Shorty joined Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, Madonna and 33 couples being married on stage for a historic highlight of the 2014 Grammy Awards. Shorty is joined by Galactic, a funk and jazz band also from New Orleans. Friday, Aug. 15 Ray LaMontagne Raymond “Ray” Charles Jack LaMontagne is an American singer-songwriter who won a Grammy Award in 2011 for Best Contemporary Folk Album. LaMontagne’s hit songs include “Trouble” and “You Are the Best Thing.” Opening is brother and sister duo The Belle Brigade.
19 Mountain Music Festival and Schweitzer Trail Run. Outdoor concerts on
the mountain, plus family activities and competitive trail run. Schweitzer.com. 255-3081
19 Summer Sounds. Skirpizoid performs.
See June 7.
19 Bodacious BBQ. 31st annual fundraiser
for Hope’s Memorial Community Center. 264-5481
25-27 Northwest YogaFest. Eureka Institute in Sagle hosts weekend of enrichment for the body, mind and spirit. 263-2217 26 Crazy Days. Downtown merchants
offer big deals in annual sidewalk sale. DowntownSandpoint.com. 255-1876
Saturday, Aug. 16 Montgomery Gentry American country duo Montgomery Gentry has 14 Top 10 singles under its belt, including “Something To Be Proud Of” and “If You Ever Stop Loving Me.” Natives of Kentucky, Eddie Montgomery and Troy Gentry were inducted into the venerable Grand Ole Opry in 2009. Opening is special guest Wade Bowen. Sunday, Aug. 17 Grand Finale “Solo Spotlight” with the Spokane Symphony Orchestra Maestro Gary Sheldon conducts the Spokane Symphony Orchestra in a Festival Fanfare Grand Finale featuring Earecka Moody on harp and Mateusz Wolski on violin. And enjoy fireworks and Taste of the Stars wine tasting!
Sandpoint Chamber’s annual food festival at Farmin Park includes tasty samples from local restaurants, local brews and wines, plus the Litehouse Chef Cook-off. 263-2161
11-13 Classic Boat Festival. Classic
Saturday, Aug. 9 Nickel Creek
26 Sandpoint Summer Sampler.
5 Summer Sounds. Bridges Home per-
Friday, Aug. 8 Huey Lewis and the News An American pop band based in San Francisco, Huey Lewis and the News scored 19 Top 10 singles in the 1980s and early ’90s including “Do You Believe in Love?” and “Heart and Soul.” The band’s “Sports” album, released more than 30 years ago, remains the anthem of a generation.
Bakery, 710 Pine St. 265-7297
26 Summer Sounds. Special Crazy Days edition: Northern Exposure performs at 10 a.m.; Arvid Lundin and Deep Roots performs at noon; Selkirk Society Band performs at 2 p.m.; Doug Bond performs at 4 p.m. See June 7. 31 Yappy Hour. At Trinity at City Beach, 58 Bridge St. See June 26. 265-7297
2 Long Bridge Swim. 20th annual 1.76mile swim across Lake Pend Oreille. See story, page 20. 265-5412
5/6/14 2:01 PM
2 Summer Sounds. The Hoodoo Two per-
28 Yappy Hour. At Evans Brothers Coffee Roastery. See June 26. 265-7297
3 Schweitzer Huckleberry Festival.
30 Summer Sounds. Kathy Colton and the Reluctants perform. See June 7.
form. See June 7.
Celebration with music, food, crafts and more in honor of the huckleberry at Schweitzer. 255-3081 7-17 Festival at Sandpoint. See Festival at
30-Sept. 1 Schweitzer Fall Fest. See Hot
8 The Aftival. Dirty Dozen Brass Band per-
forms at The Hive, 207 N. First Ave., for a concert at 9 p.m., following the Festival at Sandpoint. 208-290-3048
5-7 Harvest Party. Pend d’Oreille Winery’s annual party with family-friendly activities, food sampling, wine tasting and live music. 265-8545
9 The Aftival. Moon Taxi performs. See
6 Wilderness Act Celebration. Friends
9 Celebrate Life Fun Run/Walk. 11th
annual Long Bridge trek assists local residents with cancer plus cancer-related organizations.
9 Wings Over Sandpoint Fly-In.
of Scotchman Peaks Wilderness and Idaho Conservation League hold a celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act at Evans Brothers Coffee.
6 Summer Sounds. Devon Wade performs.
See June 7.
Sandpoint EAA Chapter 1441 hosts breakfast and invites regional pilots to fly into Sandpoint Airport and display classic, experimental and float planes. 255-9954
15-20 WaCanId Ride. Six-day bicycle tour,
9 Summer Sounds. Triolet performs. See
18-21 Idaho Draft Horse and Mule International. Northwest’s largest draft
9-10 Arts & Crafts Fair. POAC’s annual jur-
ied art exhibit at City Beach with music, kids’ activities and more. 263-6139
9-10 Festival of Quilts. Panhandle
Piecemakers Quilt Guild presents show at Sandpoint Community Hall; 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday. $3 admission.
15 The Aftival. Big Sam’s Funky Nation performs. See Aug. 8. 15-17 Artists’ Studio Tour. 11th annual
self-guided driving tour of working studios in North Idaho. 800-800-2106
15-16 Spokane to Sandpoint Relay. Team
running event, 185 miles from Mt. Spokane to City Beach. 541-350-4635
15-16 Bonner County Rodeo. Annual
rodeo at 7 p.m. each night, Bonner County Fairgrounds. 263-8414
16 Summer Sounds. The Powell Brothers with Arvid Lundin perform. See June 7. 16 “As You Like It.” Montana Shakespeare
in the Parks, 6 p.m. (MDT) at the Trout Creek Park in Heron, Mont. 406-827-3226
16 The Aftival. Performer TBD. See Aug. 8. 19-23 Bonner County Fair. Old-fashioned
344 miles around the Selkirk Mountains, presented by the International Selkirk Loop and Rotary International. 888-823-2626
horse and mule expo at the Bonner County Fairgrounds. 263-8414
19-20 “7-10 Split.” Sandpoint Onstage comedy, at Panida Little Theater. 263-9191 20 Panida Theater’s Autumn Fest Auction. See Hot Picks. 21 The Scenic Half. Sixth annual 5K/10K and half marathon around scenic Sandpoint, sponsored by Greater Sandpoint Chamber of Commerce. 263-2161 25 Yappy Hour. At Eichardt’s Pub, 212 Cedar St. See June 26. 265-7297 26-27 “7-10 Split.” See Sept. 19-20.
Weekends in October. U-Pick Pumpkin
Patch at Hickey Farms. See Hot Picks.
Scarywood Haunted Nights. Silverwood Theme Park transforms into Scarywood with goblins and spooks galore! Visit ScarywoodHaunt.com for specific dates, evenings in October. 683-3400 4 Banff Radical Reels. Mountain Fever
presents film event, 7 p.m. in the Panida Theater. 263-9191
11 Harvestfest. Farmers Market at
Sandpoint celebrates with season-ending party. 597-3355
country event at Bonner County Fairgrounds with contests, kids’ events and entertainment. Horse events in reining, barrel racing and team sorting. Concludes with Demolition Derby Aug. 23. 263-8414
18 Warren Miller Ski Film. Annual event sponsored by Alpine Shop at the Panida Theater. 263-5157
22-24 Artists’ Studio Tour. See Aug. 15-17.
31-Nov. 1 ISSA Snowmobile Convention.
23 Summer Sounds. Broken Whistle per-
forms. See June 7.
Sandpoint Winter Riders sponsors 34th annual convention with exhibits and booths at the Bonner County Fairgrounds. 263-1535
See complete, up-to-the-minute calendars at SandpointOnline.com SUMMER 2014
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Charley Packard Singer/songwriter and minister By Susan Drinkard
harley Packard may be the most well-known local on Sandpoint’s streets. If he isn’t, he is certainly one of our most beloved. He has performed his original songs at every imaginable venue – from the Farmers Market to the Festival at Sandpoint. He is a minister of song and love, having officiated a thousand-plus marriages. Of utmost importance to Packard, however, is helping alcoholics and drug addicts with sobriety. He has been playing the guitar and singing his bluesy folk songs in the Idaho Panhandle for nearly four decades, either solo or with friends such as fellow local musician Tom Newbill, who has played and recorded with Packard off and on since “the early days” in Southern California. His venues have not always been as small as Eichardt’s and Idaho Pour Authority, where he has standing gigs. Packard has been the opening act for Willie Nelson, John Prine, Arlo Guthrie, Jerry Jeff Walker, Clint Black and Asleep at the Wheel when they played Sandpoint. The largest crowd he played was 40,000 at Red Rocks amphitheater in Colorado, a benefit concert for migrant workers. His album, Charley D. and Milo – with Lon Milo DuQuette – on the Epic Records label, received a great deal of attention, but success did not feel that sweet to Packard. Seven hundred to 1,000 original songs later, he’s recorded some of his favorites on his six CDs, which are available at www.charleypackard.com The oldest of six, Packard was raised in Kansas, Texas and Oklahoma. He was the only white athlete on his high school basketball team, which won state, and he was the star football and baseball player as well. Packard played sports at the University of Kansas, where he earned a degree in anthropology. Then there were years, decades really, when he was a drug and alcohol enthusiast. Sober for 17 years, Packard has helped many addicts. He holds AA meetings in the jails. “He has become a lighthouse here for people who are afflicted by substances that have the better of them,” said Newbill. Charley Packard started marrying couples 36 years ago because locals Karen and Ted Bowers asked him to officiate their wedding. Their marriage ended, but ironically, Packard and Karen are together now and share a strong spiritual bond through their studies of the Course in Miracles. Packard’s wife of 40 years, Colleen Harris, passed away in March 2010 from cancer. Now Packard, 72, is experiencing his own cancer challenge. In April he started radiation treat-
Charley Packard has been a familiar face around Sandpoint for decades, whether he’s performing music or marrying couples. PHOTO BY DOUG FLUCKIGER
ments for esophageal tumor shrinkage. Though sick from treatments, he was optimistic about his healing, and he and Karen are planning the house they will have built for winter retreats on their land in Hawaii. Have you made your living your entire life as a singer and songwriter?
I started singing folk songs professionally at 18, and I have been doing it 54 years. Who were your musical influences?
Buddy Holly, Bob Dylan, the Beatles, but so many great
5/6/14 2:01 PM
your medical home May 3rd - October 11th
Wednesdays 3:00pm to 6:00pm
Saturdays 9:00am—1:00pm Downtown Farmin Park and Oak Street
The Charley Packard Band performing at Eichardt’s, a regular Wednesday night gig: from left, Ray Allen, Jesse Harris, Del Goff and Charley Packard. PHOTO BY BONNIE THOMPSON
songs and musicians came out of the ’60s. It spawned a lot of creativity. … There was a lot of self-indulgence, and if you survived it, you were influenced by it spiritually. Your songs seem to go right to the heart.
$OZD\V /RFDO www.sandpointfarmersmarket.com
I’m a poet first of all. There are only a few words in a song, so to create imagery and get an idea across, each line
your medical home
has to count. No line should be wasted. You go by Charley Packard. What happened to Charles Dennis Harris?
My real last name is Harris. I had a group called Charley D. and Milo out in California. We got signed to Epic Records and had a pretty good run – a couple singles had some good airplay. Milo and I parted ways business wise, though he is one of my best friends. Along with all those feelings, I thought, What the heck, why don’t I change my last name just for fun? Driving around Newport Beach, I went by a 1940s Packard convertible restored in soft yellow. I pulled over and saw on one of those fenders, in beautiful chrome script – Packard – and I thought, I’m Charley Packard. What happened then?
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I was ambitious. When I got signed to CBS, put out an album, and went on the road, I had some measure of success, but the reward was not what I thought it would be. Now Charley D. and Milo is a collector’s album.
I don’t want a young thing Who says I’m the first I’d take one who thinks I’m the last I don’t want a sweet thing Talkin’ about the future Give me a gal who has got a past Someone who knows how Someone who shows how Give me an old gal That’s been around the block before. –“Gimme an Ol’ Gal” by Charley Packard
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Interview Your song “Gimme an Ol’ Gal” should have made you Nashville famous. Tell me about the origin of that song.
It’s not a colorful story. In my drinking days I’d come home pretty loaded up and write and write. I’d wake up and remember them vaguely. I’d just make things up. A lot of people around the country do that song, not big names, but people like me. It’s been working for many years and gets so many requests, I can’t help but enjoy it. In times of your life when you weren’t creating, is that when you were creating hell for yourself?
No, I could write songs and create hell for myself in the same day. I’m an alcohol/drug addict who has not used in 17 years, but I drank a lot and used a lot, and I’m grateful for my recovery.
I wish I could have been your lover Wish I could have been your man But you’ll never, ever hold a lover With that bottle in your hand. – “Bottle in Yer Hand” Why is that?
Well, there are addictive personalities. In recovery you see that addiction and alcoholism are obsessive-compulsive disorders. You obsess about drink-
ing and once you have a drink, you have a compulsion to drink. Other people can have a couple glasses of wine and stop. People like me can’t. People ask, “Do you want a beer?” I don’t have a beer. I might have a case of beer. I’d be closing down the 219 some 10 hours later. Many years ago I was in a psychiatric hospital in Houston because I had OCD, and this brother, bless his heart, a Southern Baptist preacher, asked, “Charley, why don’t you just stop? Why don’t you just pray about it?” I said to
Two Years at the Top.
Did you have a rough childhood?
It was interesting and character building. I had a lot of kind people throughout my life – relatives and strangers. What is your spiritual heritage?
I was raised a Southern Baptist in the Bible Belt. I have a fondness for the people who raised me in that religion and taught me prayer and mentioned the word “God” all the time. No matter what the theology is, from there you can branch out and explore. How would you say your beliefs have evolved through the years?
I just believe in Spirit. The foundation of my beliefs is in the Course of Miracles, and I attend the Sunday service at the Gardenia Center. Also, Alcoholics Anonymous is as spiritual an organization as there is. It seems you are treasured here, a man people know to have a kind and loving essence.
If I do, I’m blessed. People have been very patient with me. But you have sown some wild oats in the past, eh?
I was a rascal, but I was never meanspirited. I just partook of everything – to the abuse of most of it.
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him, “Do you think I don’t pray about it?” Your ego has to almost die to surrender totally. I’ve seen miracles happen to families and people’s lives changed. I am so fond of Alcoholics Anonymous. You stay sober by helping others stay sober. How did you find Sandpoint?
Dennis and Carol Coats of Sandpoint spawned a migration of their musician friends from Southern California to the Northwest in the 1970s. Colleen and I moved out here for sanity’s sake. We didn’t want to raise our children there. Some folks told me that love would never end I say that working for love sounds crazy But you lose it when you get lazy, my friends. – “Workin’ for Love”
Tell me about your family. You have two sons?
You have also presided and performed a song at the weddings of many couples. Do you have any idea how many?
I’ve officiated 1,700 weddings in 36 years – some at City Beach, one on horseback, one couple got married in a tree at Roosevelt Grove (of Ancient Cedars). I’ve done ’em in blizzard conditions on top of the quad at Schweitzer. I’ve done so many up there, they put a slab down so people don’t have to navigate over rocks. I’ve married many couples at the lake, at the house, at Ruby Ridge, even in a pickup truck in front of the house. There was a wedding outside Clark Fork where the guests circled up on bikes and carried weapons and fired them frequently. I’ve done some bikers’ funerals, too, at the same location.
No, three sons. Jesse lives in Florida and works for Apple, and James lives in Sandpoint. Mason is a rock-n-roll son who lives in Minnesota. He was conceived a long time ago when I was on the road. I received a birth certificate with my name on it in the mail,
At left, Charley Packard recording with Lon Milo DuQuette, circa 1970; above, opening for Willie Nelson at the Festival at Sandpoint, 1994
but I couldn’t locate him. About nine years ago he tracked me down on the Internet, wrote me a wonderful letter, and so we’ve become great friends. So I have a whole new son and three new grandchildren in addition to Jesse’s three. He gets along great with my other two sons and he even looks more like me than they do. What was Colleen like?
She was a wonderful human being, wife, mother, a great partner. She hung with me for 40 years. So how many lives have you lived?
That’s a good question. I’m almost 72. ... This will be my fifth. There was my youth, wild college days, my Hollywood career, moving to Idaho and raising my boys, and this one, my last, is with
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Karen. I feel really blessed about that, too. We share our families and bring all our other lives to this, and we don’t go backwards too much. We’re at an age where there’s nothing to argue about, so we’ve never had one. Will you continue singing and marrying folks – indefinitely?
As long as I can carry a guitar and carry a tune, I will.
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Ethan and his treehouse Bicycle-powered elevator goes viral
hat’s 30 feet off the ground and accessed by a human-powered bicycle elevator? Ethan Schlussler’s treehouse, of course! Since posting a 56-second video on his YouTube channel last August, Schlussler and his innovative elevator have garnered more coverage than you can shake a branch at – CNN, “Good Morning America,” Fox News, a TV show in Japan, an online magazine in Norway, a radio show in Germany, a kids’ science magazine in Turkey, and Animal Planet’s “Treehouse Masters” – a real coup. Ironically, the 23-year-old doesn’t watch TV and hadn’t even heard about “Treehouse Masters” when he started building last summer. Within a few months, though, a producer from the popular reality TV show contacted Schlussler. Pete Nelson, the exuberant star, visited the building site up Rapid Lightning one day last October and filmed a segment that aired Jan. 17 in the “Black Bear Bungalow” episode. Nelson’s
shtick is swooping in to help do-it-yourselftreehouse builders fix a problem. “It ended up being pretty humorous,” Schlussler said. “They came totally unprepared.” Meantime, that YouTube video has attracted more than 1.6 million views from nearly every country in the world, and another reality show barked up his tree. A film crew visited in April to scope out Schussler’s project for a potential series on the Discovery Channel, “Tree People.” Plus, representatives from CabinPorn.com called about coming this summer for a two-day photo shoot for a book. It all started when an idea popped into Schlussler’s head last June 16. “I wanted to have a space of my own outside of my mother’s house,” he said. He selected the biggest, healthiest Western larch tree on his mother’s south-facing acreage for SUMMER 2014
the hexagon-shaped, 80-square-foot treehouse. The site is conveniently located close to the house and a portable sawmill belonging to the friend and neighbor he grew up with, Aza Dhaenens. In real life, Dhaenens, 26, is the one who helped Schlussler with ideas – and who first suggested using a bicycle. “It was such a simple idea, the bicycle elevator, and who would guess that people would be so inspired and so in awe of something so simple?” Dhaenens said. Schlussler, though, designed and built the entire treehouse and its elevator himself. “I just knew I wanted to make some way to get up there that was more interesting and easier than the ladder,” he said. Starting with
Ethan Schlussler demonstrates his bicycle elevator in this self-portrait above; inset, Aza Dhaenens captured Schlussler as he embarked on treehouse construction in 2013
STORY BY BILLIE JEAN GERKE PHOTOS BY ETHAN SCHLUSSLER
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LIFESTYLE his mom’s old bike and a counterweight made from a water heater, he manipulated the bicycle’s gear ratio and added an extra pulley to create more advantage for lift as he fine-tuned his invention. “The first time it worked and I was actually able to pedal up, it was really fantastic,” he said. Made of cedar and preserved with Danish oil, the treehouse won’t rot, but its longevity hinges on the tree’s lifespan. “The (friction) attachment system I invented for it is entirely experimental,” Schlussler said. “It does constrict some of the sap of the tree.” This spring he added two platforms on nearby cedar trees and three zip lines, including one to the house. He would like to build a pedal-powered contraption to facilitate an uphill return – and more treehouses. Dhaenens said: “I’m even tossing around building a treehouse myself up there. Since they’ve pretty much adopted me, that means I can visit whenever I want to.” For this first treehouse, Schlussler used supplies that he had or could make from the property. He salvaged a logging cable found in their woods and metal roofing from a neighbor’s
dilapidated barn. He spent two weeks on design and preparation – building a miniature prototype followed by a fullsized one and milling the lumber. First, he placed supports in the tree. Within a week, he built the floor that provided a usable platform. He built six trusses and the roof on the ground, hoisted it up a 40-foot ladder, and clamped it from atop a second, 8-foot ladder. The roof is self-supported – most likely another revolutionary design – that allows it and the walls to move independently, flexing as the tree bends in the wind. His mom, Sandpoint Waldorf School teacher Julie McCallan, watched with interest and some trepidation: “A few minutes when he was dangling, I thought, Is that safe?” “I’ve been doing crazy stuff since I walked,” Schlussler said. His mom loves the end result. “It’s just so gorgeous,” she said. “From the beginning, it just had a beauty about it.” Although home-schooled after sixth grade, Schlussler learned most of his skills from neighbors and earned a GED at 17, followed by an associate’s degree in photography at North Idaho
College. Now he’s leaning toward building treehouses for a living: “It keeps me outdoors and it’s a lot of fun. I like anything that’s dangerous, and building treehouses is somewhat inherently dangerous because it’s higher off the ground than your average house.” Schlussler has done construction, operated heavy equipment, logged, cut firewood, been an auto mechanic, and fabricated metal. He even worked as a clown on a unicycle one “Scarywood” season at Silverwood Theme Park. He and his mom have pondered offering vacation rentals in the long-term. “It’s always been a dream of mine, a B&B, just because I like to cook,” said McCallan. “I learned a lot building this treehouse,” Schlussler said. “Something I got out of the experience … is the sense of being able to invent or build anything I might need rather than going and buying it at the store, or looking it up on the Internet, or finding some plans, or paying someone else to do it. It’s been a hugely rewarding experience.” A model for “reduce, reuse and recycle,” the treehouse features craftsman touches and ingenuity throughout its design
5/6/14 2:11 PM
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PICTURED IN HISTORY
Sir Edmund Hillary visits Sunnyside MITZI HAWKINS
DALTON HAWKINS JOAN HAWKINS
SIR EDMUND HILLARY DUANE “CAP” DAVIS PERTEMBA SHERPA KIM MOMB BILL HAWKINS JOHN ROSKELLEY
DAWN ROSKELLEY JOYCE ROSKELLEY
S BY JENNIFER LAMONT LEO
tarting in the 1920s, hundreds of people attempted – and some died trying – to climb to the top of 29,029-foot Mount Everest in the Himalayas. This quest was finally achieved May 29, 1953, when New Zealand mountaineer Sir Edmund Hillary and Nepali sherpa Tenzing Norgay made headlines as the first-known climbers to conquer the summit. Over time other climbers repeated this feat, but by the 1980s no one had yet attempted to reach the pinnacle by scaling the treacherous East Face, known to some as the “final challenge.” In July 1981, nearly 30 years after his celebrated climb, Hillary toured the Spokane area to promote a climbing expedition, “American Everest,” scheduled to take place later that year with the goal of reaching the summit via the East Face. The team included world-class mountain climbers John Roskelley and Kim Momb, both of Spokane, Wash., and San Francisco banker-cum-climber Richard Blum. One of Roskelley’s best friends was Sandpoint native Will Hawkins, who had been born and raised on the Sunnyside Peninsula on the northern shore of Lake Pend Oreille, though he wasn’t a Himalayan climber himself. “Four generations of Hawkinses had logged, farmed and lived on a section of land that God had reserved for his retirement,” Roskelley wrote in his 1998 memoir, “Stories Off the Wall.” “Will’s heroes were mountain climbers,” Roskelley continued. “He knew more about Maurice Herzog, Sir Edmund Hillary and Jim Whittaker than I did.” The regional press covered Hillary’s visit to Spokane: “Sir Edmund Hillary, the world’s best-known mountain climber, will be in the Spokane area as part of a program to promote the American Everest expedition to China,” the Spokane Daily Chronicle reported on July 16, 1981. “Hillary will be Roskelley’s guest while in Spokane. … Roskelley
Ross Hall captured a memorable evening at the home of Will and Joan Hawkins in 1981, when they hosted a dinner for Sir Edmund Hillary with fellow climbers John Roskelley, Kim Momb and Pertemba Sherpa, and several locals
and his wife, Joyce, will drive Hillary to the home of Mr. and Mrs. Will Hawkins near Sandpoint, Idaho, where Hillary will be the guest of honor at a dinner.” Will Hawkins’ son, Bill Hawkins, 46, still lives at Sunnyside and remembers that dinner when he was just 14. “We talked about his building a school in Nepal,” he said. “We talked about George Mallory, who some thought might have reached the top of Everest before he died on a summit attempt. Hillary said he found no evidence of Mallory being at the top.” After the dinner, Hillary spent the night at the Hawkins’ home. “He was a tall man,” Bill said. “Our house was unique in that we had a swinging bed, and he said he thought he might get seasick if he slept in it.” In October 1981, American Everest started its quest but had to cancel due to high avalanche danger. In 1983, the first successful East Face expedition team included Kim Momb. For the rest of his life, Hillary returned frequently to his beloved Nepal to build hospitals and schools. In 1999, Time magazine named him one of the 100 most influential people of the 20th century; he died in 2008 at age 88. Will Hawkins, an avid outdoorsman and photographer, continued to raise his three children at Sunnyside until his death, from cancer, at age 47 in 1986. The first American recipient of the Golden Ice Axe, Roskelley, 65, wrote four books and still lives in Spokane, where he spent nine years as a county commissioner.
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Quest Aircraft Company spreads its wings
n the other side of the world, Mission Aviation Fellowship (MAF) pilot Alan Discoe prepares to land a small plane on one of the most marginal airstrips in the world. “Their airstrip is on the side of a hill,” writes Discoe in his monthly newsletter. “They have worked very hard to clear more trees, level hills of dirt on the sides, and extend the top of the airstrip.” Luckily, Discoe has faith and skill to fly on. Daily, he visits remote villages in Papua, Indonesia, bringing food, medicine and missionary support. One day he delivers caravan loads of Bibles newly translated into Hupla. Another day he takes a boy with a broken femur to a nearby hospital – a 200-mile flight through the early stages of Typhoon Haiyan. “Needless to say, it was a pretty dramatic flight,” said Discoe. Discoe flies the KODIAK, a 10-seat, single-engine, turboprop utility airplane manufactured by Quest Aircraft Company in Sandpoint. With its rugged aluminum construction, Pratt & Whitney PT6 turbine engine, robust landing gear, and three-panel Garmin avionics suite, the plane is designed precisely for tough, short takeoffs and landings.
Genesis of a plane In 1998, Quest Aircraft founders Dave Voetmann and Tom Hamilton dreamt of a perfect plane for mission and humanitarian work; they didn’t anticipate that the commercial market would be just as hungry for the rugged little backcountry plane. Hamilton and Voetmann imag-
mber hinancial, LPL C. Insurance affiliates.
ined a strong yet light plane that could carry heavy loads, travel long distances and land on a dime. Out of this vision emerged Quest Aircraft Company. The company has grown from 14 employees in 2001 to 172 employees currently. It owns two buildings that enclose 84,000 square feet of tinkering space. SUMMER 2014
A humming hive of productivity, the Quest factory sits on the edge of the Sandpoint Airport, between a little red barn and the Selkirk Mountains. It assembles at least two planes a week and attempts to make every 10th sale at a favorable price to a supporting mission or humanitarian organization such as MAF and Jungle Aviation and Radio Service (JAARS). The assembly of the plane has been streamlined: Raw aluminum materials enter at one end, a finished plane exits at the other. In the middle, the magic happens. Employees assemble the craft by hand and joke with coworkers. The “wing nuts,” named by Lynn Thomas, a former director of tech-
Shown at a remote airstrip in Kalimantan, Indonesia, the KODIAK was specifically designed for mission and humanitarian work. PHOTO BY DAVE FORNEY Inset, back in Sandpoint at Quest Aircraft, every part must be perfect, each wing strut and rivet. PHOTO BY ORIANA KOROL
BY ORIANA KOROL
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nical marketing, blast country music, happily riveting together two-dimensional wing parts into 3-D wings. These wings carry up to 7,225 pounds, take off in under 1,000 feet and climb more than 1,300 feet per minute. Announcements echo over the loudspeakers, drills shriek and light bounces from the large windows onto sparkling sheets of aluminum and not-yet-completed KODIAKs.
“We can be building four wings, that’s two sets, at a time,” Thomas said, joking with people as he walked through the factory. With every step of the process, he emphasizes the importance of precision. Everything must match. Every step is checked and double-checked. “I don’t want to say we were perfect when we started; it’s more a process of asking how can we do it better and
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The KODIAK carries two stretchers with injured men, as well as family members, above left, from a remote location in Indonesia, above. PHOTOS BY DAVE FORNEY AND ALAN DISCOE
more efficiently,” he added. Thomas attributes many of the manufacturing improvements over the years to the employees working on the factory floor. “Virtually everyone on this floor has contributed something,” he said. “They say, ‘If we had this instead of that I could do my job better.’ ” Despite tough economic times, the company has grown steadily. “We’re a marathon,” said Sam Hill, chief executive officer at Quest. “You have to be prepared to run the whole 26 miles. It’s not a sprint. Our business is very consistent and long-term, precise. There are no ups and downs.” Chuckling, he added, “Though ups and downs is our business – takeoffs and landings.”
Summer Hours May 26th - mid-October Monday through Saturday 8am to 4pm
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BUSINESS The KODIAK cuts through the cold in Port Alsworth, Alaska. COURTESY QUEST AIRCRAFT COMPANY
Delivering its 100th plane and beyond In 2007, the KODIAK received Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) certification and began delivering planes to customers. Since then, Quest has been certified for flight and sales in commercial markets all over the world. The company celebrated the delivery of its 100th airplane Sept. 19, 2013. This
landmark is just a small stepping-stone, though. Over the winter, Quest was approved for and made sales in Brazil, Ecuador, Venezuela and China. “2013 was a good year for Quest,” said Steve Zinda, Quest’s vice president of sales, marketing and customer service. “We delivered 28 KODIAKs, which is almost double what we did in 2012.” This feat is not an easy one in the shifting global aviation market. Zinda,
a retired U.S. Air Force maintainer, has worked in aircraft sales and delivery since 2001. He says that before the 2008 economic downturn, 70 percent of all aircraft sales occurred in the United States. Now that statistic is reversed: 70 percent of sales happen overseas. Zinda says it’s time he broke out a Rosetta stone. “My job occurs across the globe,” he said. “We have KODIAKs operating in Afghanistan, Indonesia, Papua New Guinea. … People can look at a brochure or an article, but they’re not going to buy the KODIAK until they touch it, feel it, fly it.” The KODIAK performs superbly in these foreign countries and emerging commercial markets. Like a rescue dog turned guard dog, family pet and astro-
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Nurturing the aerospace industry Aerospace has long been a robust industry
enticing offers to move to other munici-
in the Northwest. Since the arrival of Quest
palities, Guida is committed to staying in
Aircraft Company in Sandpoint, other spe-
cialized and innovative aerospace manufacturing companies have taken root. “It’s not much of a surprise to see,” Nick Guida, the founder of Tamarack Aerospace
“The community has been really helpful, Panhandle State Bank and local individuals,” Guida said. In 2008, the Idaho Transportation
Group, said. “Once Quest came in all the
Department estimated the state’s 75
spin-off happens. … People split and start
public-use airports generated $2.1 billion,
little companies after being a consultant for
quantifying the large impact of jobs, tourism,
years. It’s a normal evolution.”
medical care, agriculture support, search and
At the same time, since 2008, the Sandpoint Airport has seen a spike in use,
rescue efforts, recreation, and environmental services small airports provide.
both as an airport and as a hub for special-
“There’s been a radical shift in usage,”
ized and innovative aerospace manufactur-
Hauck said. “There’s more small companies
and resort traffic, part-time residents becoming full-time residents.” As of Jan. 1, Granite Aviation began operating FBO services out of a new terminal built by Andrew Berrey, who formerly operated Air Idaho Charters. Berrey cited the increase in business and personal air travel to Sandpoint over the past 10 years. He desired to provide a great entry point to the area, a gathering place for aviators and students, and to help support the growing aerospace industry and its need for pilots. “Over the next several decades there will be a worldwide shortage of pilots by over 400,000,” he said.
Andrew Berrey behind Granite Aviation’s front desk in the new FBO building he constructed at the Sandpoint Airport. PHOTOS BY ORIANA KOROL
So he is busy training new pilots. Berrey is not the only Sandpoint pilot spreading the knowledge and joy of flying. This year, Ken Larson, retired from the U.S.
“Jet traffic has tripled,” said Jason Hauck. He has worked at the airport’s fixed-based
volunteered his time to help 10 high school
operator (FBO) for six years, first as the
students work toward private or sport pilot
owner of SilverWing Flight Services and now
licenses. Part of the High School Cooperative
as the director of maintenance at Granite
Aerospace Program first dreamt of by Anna
Aviation. The airport has also become popu-
Filce, a student at Forrest M. Bird Charter
lated with companies: Timberline Helicopters,
School, the course introduces students to
Tamarack Aerospace Group, Quest Aircraft
various aviation careers.
Company and Life Flight Network. Tamarack Aerospace Group recently sold its active winglet design to Cessna. Despite 42
Air Force and 10 years of flying business jets,
“Aviation offers good, stable careers,” Larson said. He acknowledges that Granite Aviation’s new lightweight sport aircraft,
Ken Larson and Anna Filce inside of Granite Aviation’s lightweight sport aircraft, one of the planes flown by the high school aviation class
the Tecnam P92 Eaglet, has made the course possible. North Idaho College (NIC) has also just begun a two-year aerospace program. Funded entirely by a Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training Grant from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Employment Training Administration, the program enrolled 37 students in the first semester last fall. Director Patrick O’Halloran says the most successful aspect of NIC’s program has been the one-year composite materials course. Even Boeing recently recognized the need for workforce skills in this field. This year Quest Aircraft Company celebrated Women in Aviation day for the first time. Young girls with wide eyes walked through the huge factory, sticking their hands in piles of discarded aluminum shavings and covering their ears while employees demonstrated riveting. One of the employees and volunteers at the event, Heather Shaw, said she will complete training for her private pilot’s license soon. “I have a 4-year-old girl and I’ve taken her up in the plane with me 12 times. She says, ‘I want to be a pilot, mommy!’ ” In Sandpoint that dream is not so lofty. –Oriana Korol
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BUSINESS naut, the KODIAK is now tracking wildlife, patrolling borders, rescuing lost mushroom hunters, delivering food and medicines, and dropping adrenalineseeking parachutists. “The U.S. Department of Interior Fish and Wildlife uses nine planes to do wildlife surveys: 10 hours a day, 100 feet off the ground, 85 knots, looking at wildlife,” Thomas said. “What they see happening to wildlife is an indicator of what’s happening to the environment, (due to) global warming or pesticides.” The planes are also assisting research aimed at colonizing other planets. Last summer, two private KODIAK pilots, Dr. Richard Sugden and Richard Spencer, volunteered their time and expertise delivering people and supplies to the Flashline Mars Arctic Research Station in the polar desert on Canada’s Devon Island. The location for this simulation is as similar to Mars as a place on Earth can get – isolated, cold and dangerous – and the KODIAK was the perfect plane for the job. Quest has recently partnered with
Northrop Grumman to develop a special mission version of the KODIAK called the Air Claw. It is designed for surveillance and reconnaissance activities and is being marketed to domestic, international and law enforcement agencies. Each plane is equipped differently for its job. Planes heading to Alaska have de-icing mechanisms on their wings; planes landing on lakes or rivers have floats instead of landing gear; the parachute jumping version has a roll-up door flap. “It’s rewarding to hear that something that you built actually goes out and does it,” said Thomas, “to know that we saved lives, we helped lives, we made a difference in someone’s life.” In many industrializing countries, the aviation market is perfect for the KODIAK. “The aviation infrastructure is not as robust as in the U.S.,” Zinda said. “There are not as many options of places to land, only unimproved airstrips. In remote regions that means fields and roads. The KODIAK is designed for oper-
ating in and out of unimproved airstrips.” Latin America and China both offer huge new markets. “We are optimistic that our level of activity will continue,” said Zinda. “We have seen strong market acceptance both in the United States and abroad. Internationally, Latin America is proving to be a good region for us. We have delivered four KODIAKs there so far this year.” According to Zinda, China’s environment is similar to the United States: “You have plains, mountains, Arctic regions.” The main difference he noticed when visiting was cultural. “In China, when we sit down and eat, there’s a big, what I would call, lazy Susan in the middle of the table. Everybody plucks a little from all the dishes. You get a multitude of tastes.” He described plenty of cultural similarities, too, for example, people rushing by plugged into cell phones, looking down at their feet. “The world is a more connected place because of technology,” he said. “You can even stay
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Connection is a big part of why Quest has not only stayed afloat in this tough economic time but has grown and expanded into market niches that didn’t even exist 10 years ago. The company has stayed connected to evolving aviation markets, to their employees, and to their own core beliefs and values. Zinda left a Fortune 500 company, Honda Aircraft Company, to come to “small little Quest.” Faith was a big part of his decision. “It’s a way to give back to society,” he said. “Rather than just delivering products, I can bring products and good.” With a huge backlog and expanding markets, the company can pick and choose their clients. “We have ethical standards,” Zinda said. “We would never knowingly sell planes to anyone who didn’t match those standards.”
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The management’s Christian values don’t interfere with hiring employees or selling to individuals, though. “Even though our faith might be different, at the 40,000-foot level, we’re all children of God,” Zinda added, laughing. Thomas, who also left a high paying job on Wall Street, has a great sense of pride in the KODIAK. “I’ll put this airplane next to any other in quality and workmanship and design,” he said. “There’s so much pride that goes into the airplane. We’ve got people who have moved here just to work here.” Despite expansion, Quest has not lost touch with its mission. In 2013 it was able to make a quicker-thanexpected delivery to JAARS, one of its founding mission members. JAARS called it a “Christmas Miracle.” The plane flew more than 8,200 miles and 50 hours from Waxhaw, N.C., to Hilo, Hawaii, to the Marshall Islands, and finally to Aiyura Valley in Papua New Guinea. A fleet of four KODIAKs in Papua New Guinea replaced 50-year-old prop planes and now serve as the only link to the outside world for many people in this mountainous, jungle island. “In many cases,” said Tim Scott of JAARS, “that link means survival.” Beyond survival, these small planes provide deep, meaningful connection. When arriving for the first time in the KODIAK at the village Emdomen, Alan Discoe, the MAF pilot, was received with whoops and dancing. He wrote: “After the crowd settled down, the village pastor called everyone over to sit on the ground in the parking area, and he described how years ago, MAF’s John Miller was the first pilot to ever land at their airstrip, and that today was the first day that the bigger airplane, the KODIAK, came. We prayed together, and then they presented me with a few gifts, like a feather head band, some live chickens, a hand-woven net bag, and smoked pig meat!” From a small, mountain community in Idaho to small, mountain communities across the globe, the KODIAK is spreading resources, knowledge and a new, global perspective.
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Knowing nature Artist and naturalist Karen Robinson paints what she loves
Artist Karen Robinson draws on her scientific background and a love of water for inspiration: “ ‘Moody Blue’ is an abstract expression of Lake Pend Oreille during a storm,” she said. PHOTO BY KATIE KOSAYA
aren Robinson, 59, has a unique perspective on nature, combining science and art with equal parts thinking, doing and outright joy for life. With her wildlife biology and botany background, she could easily have gone into technical illustration and indeed has been drawing since old enough to grasp a crayon. Fond memories as a teenager included time spent riding her horse, even to the swimming area, as well as visits to her grandparents in Florida, where she was captivated by the ocean. A weeklong summer camp aboard the three-masted Joseph Conrad in Mystic Seaport, Conn., introduced her to sailing, which she likens to riding a horse. Holding the reins, she says, is like feeling the wind in the sail. Add countless hours spent looking at art in books and at the St. Louis Art Museum and you’d wonder why she didn’t pursue art at University of Montana, instead of earning a Bachelor of Science in wildlife biology and botany.
BY CARRIE SCOZZARO
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ART “I didn’t want to just catalog nature,” says Robinson, “I wanted to know nature.” Immersion in wildlife would inform her later artwork and, in the meantime, result in a respected career with various agencies: Idaho Department of Lands, Idaho Fish and Game, Idaho Panhandle National Forest, Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation. She’s done forest inventory, fire suppression, even worked as a park ranger. Prior to moving to Sandpoint nearly three decades ago, Robinson lived eight years in Coolin, mapping Priest Lake grizzly and caribou habitat.
Although she still works part-time for Idaho Department of Lands coordinating its State Forestry Contest, Robinson is shifting her focus to more artwork. Her past paintings ranged from geese in flight, elk and fish to area landmarks like the Granary District during winter solstice and the former Panhandle Mill Building. A special affinity for water continues to gain Robinson recognition, such as the illustration she did for the cover of “Legendary Lake Pend Oreille: Idaho’s Wilderness of Water,” at left. She likes to be in it, on it, near it, including frequent trips to the coast and, locally, enjoys hiking, kayaking and sailing (see sidebar, page 48).
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ART Robinson is also becoming known for her paintings of boats. In addition to the 2010 poster for the annual Sandpoint Classic Boat Festival, Robinson’s commissions range from an idyllic mooring in a secluded cove to the rough chop drama of a sailboat striving against wind and rain. “I want people to be drawn into it and feel like they’re there,” said Robinson of her paintings. That’s meant careful observation and continually developing her craft. The first boat painting she ever did referenced enough of a photo she didn’t own that Robinson felt it unethical to sell the piece. She started taking her own photos, such as at local regattas and when kayaking around the lake, for
close-ups that would be transformed into paintings – and fine-tuning her technique so that she can paint en plein air, which she favors. Robinson points to “Guiding Light,” a 2001 plein air painting of Oregon’s Yaquina Head Lighthouse as a breakthrough. “It took me a year to get the colors right,” says Robinson, noting that she finally felt she had control of the watercolor, without overworking it. See that and more examples of her work at www.karenrobinsonart.com. Robinson does minimal masking and likes to work quickly with large brushes – she’s partial to a 3-inch Japanese Hake – as she embraces techniques from Nita Engle’s book,
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In the water, in the know
Artist Karen Robinson knows her local waterways. For more than 40 years, she’s worked in natural resources in, on and around the area’s lakes and rivers, and has parlayed that experience into a growing body of paintings. Here are some things she likes to do in, on or by the water. You may enjoy them as well:
SAILING. Watch Sandpoint Sailing Association Thursday night boat races from City Beach during the summer or, if you’re lucky, climb onboard to crew.
CRUISING. Lake Pend Oreille Cruises appeals to a variety of interests with bird and butterfly-watching, on-board dining, and history cruises.
KAYAK. Pack River is quiet as is Dover Bay on the Pend Oreille River, which is isolated from larger speed boats. Karen’s favorite place is the delta of the Clark Fork. Outdoor Experience and Sandpoint Boat and RV Rental both rent a variety of watercraft. And SandpointOnline.com has plenty of paddling routes from beginner to experienced levels.
SWIM. If you’re not conditioned for the Long Bridge Swim, a gentler route is along the Pend d’Oreille Bay Trail. Springy Point along Lakeshore Drive is a good place to swim, and afterwards you can check out Idaho Fish & Game’s Waterlife Discovery Center.
OBSERVE. Birders will thrill at the viewing opportunities at the Kootenai National Wildlife Refuge just west of Bonners Ferry. And for just a good general guide of places to go on, near or in the water, SandpointOnline. com puts camping, hiking, biking, and other outdoor recreation at your fingertips. –Carrie Scozzaro
“How to Make a Watercolor Paint Itself: Experimental Techniques for Achieving Realistic Effects.” Some of the book’s lessons, like an activity requiring painters to surrender control and pour the paint on the paper, she shares with others, such as in classes with the former Arts Alliance/ Sandpoint Center for the Arts. In a past class, for example, participants kayaked to a favorite spot and used lake water to paint watercolors of – as one would expect – the water. Having recently earned her master’s degree in the University of Idaho’s Adult, Organizational Learning and Leadership program, Robinson plans to resume teaching soon. Her focus is on sharing tools and techniques, as well as her passion for painting, but she doesn’t try to make anyone paint just like her. That includes husband Ed, 57, employed as Pend Oreille area manager for Idaho Department of Lands, who took up watercolor painting about six years ago. With a tighter, illustrative style, Ed Robinson’s paintings of areas such as Myrtle Creek and Scotchman Peaks complements Karen’s as they’re
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Clockwise from opposite page: “Guiding Light,” a painting of Oregon’s Yaquina Head Lighthouse; “Quiet Cove”; “RAV,” a commission for a Norwegian friend, depicts the owner’s sailboat in the North Sea in heavy weather; winning submission for the 2010 Classic Boat Festival poster
currently displayed side by side at Di Luna’s Café. Oldest son Ben’s artwork, mostly pen-and-ink and mixed media watercolor portraits, are also displayed at Di Luna’s, although youngest son Connor’s pottery can only be seen in the Robinsons’ Sandpoint home. A modest two-story at the end of a quiet street, the Robinson home is a testimony to a family that embraces both art and nature. While Ben, 27, pursued a more creative career – the film school grad is a web developer for Keokee – Connor, 21, followed the science pathway, pursuing a degree in astrophysics from Mom’s alma mater, University of Montana. Pictures of them
growing up, along with other family members and friends, adorn the walls, as do paintings by both Ed and Karen. Plants are everywhere except the upstairs studio Ed and Karen share, the one flooded with light and facing the raised-bed backyard garden and neighboring fields. One might think that as much as the Robinsons enjoy the water – they have a day sailer and have talked about a boat big enough to sustain the unpredictability of Lake Pend Oreille – that their house would be closer to it. No, says Karen, but it does have one unique and telling feature: It’s positioned kitty-corner on the lot. “It shows we’re different,” she said, laughing. SUMMER 2014
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A tale of two rivers After decades of change, the Kootenai and Clark Fork rivers are being reclaimed
Gary Aitken Jr., Kootenai tribal chair on the Kootenai River: “One day my kids, and maybe my grandkids, could even catch a sturgeon and keep it.”
nlike other riverine ecosystems that have been lost before anyone noticed or cared, the Kootenai River near Bonners Ferry and the Clark Fork Delta on Lake Pend Oreille are being reclaimed. The projects have garnered funding and consensus decisions from various local, state, and tribal governments and agencies; scientists; concerned citizens; and property owners. Avista, Ducks Unlimited, the Kinnikinnick Native Plant Society and Idaho Conservation League have also been involved in the Clark Fork project. This “tale of two rivers,” written by two writers, Oriana Korol and Cate Huisman, details restoration efforts that promise to restore key habitats in these two major waterways in Bonner and Boundary counties.
The Kootenai River: Boundary County’s Lifeline
STORY BY ORIANA KOROL PHOTOS BY DOUG MARSHALL
ast summer, excavators approached the southern bank of the Kootenai River a couple meanders upstream of Bonners Ferry. Contracted by the Kootenai Tribe of Idaho (KTOI), they had been tasked with constructing an entirely new riverbank and channel. Don Smith owns the riverfront property. He bought it three years ago and put in a blueberry patch and a hay field, but he was losing land fast. “That was why it was for sale,” Smith said, walking around his muddy field in March, Canada geese calling to each other overhead. “Most people shied away from it. So much bank had been lost. … I’ve lost as much as 20 feet in a year, just since I’ve had it.”
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W AT E R The Kootenai River is one of many watershed ecosystems in northern Idaho that have been disturbed in the last 100 years by logging, mining, diking, agriculture and damming. Steep banks have formed; deep pools have disappeared; and nutrients previously supplied by flooding collect and settle out behind dams. Native river and wetland species are suffering. Kootenai River white sturgeon is currently listed as endangered; south arm kokanee are functionally extinct; bull trout are threatened; burbot was proposed for threatened status; and westslope cutthroat may soon be added to the endangered list. Waterfowl have lost their nesting and feeding grounds. Even the lowest levels – algae, insects and invertebrates – have shrunk in abundance. Luckily for Smith and the people around Bonners Ferry, funding from the Bonneville Power Administration, provided through the Northwest Power and Conservation Council’s Fish and Wildlife Program, has helped the KTOI
spearhead restoration projects along a 55-mile stretch of the river. Funds are ratepayer funds, not tax dollars, and are provided to protect, mitigate and enhance fish and wildlife that were negatively impacted by construction and operation of Libby Dam. “It’s a win for me as a landowner,” said Smith, of the bank restoration done on his property in 2013, “and it benefits the fish habitat and the river, so that creates more recreation, more fishing. … I’ve got a boy, grandkids. ... They want to come down here and fish.”
An aging fish population The Kootenai River runs from Canada to Montana to Idaho and back to Canada. There, the Kootenay Lake sinks to 500 feet deep and stretches 65 miles long by three miles wide. The giant Kootenai River white sturgeon, some 10,000 years ago, was separated from the Columbia River population and made this lake its permanent home. The Kootenais have fished for sturgeon as long as they can remember. They
fashioned their canoes after this 10-footlong, prehistoric fish; it starred in myths. In 1994 it was listed as endangered. “When the Kootenai Tribe of Idaho first recognized that the sturgeon were in need of intervention or assistance was in the ’80s,” said Sue Ireland, the Fish and Wildlife department director for KTOI. “They recognized that there were all these older fish in the system, but no young ones were coming along to replace them.” The Kootenais immediately stopped fishing for sturgeon and built an experimental aquaculture facility just north of Bonners Ferry. In 1991, they released their first small year-class of hatchery fish into the wild. Since then, KTOI has conducted mark-recapture studies, analyzed fish genetics, added nutrients to the river, and is now building a larger hatchery at the confluence of the Moyie and Kootenai rivers. The extra space is critical for creating a burbot hatchery program and for keeping families of white sturgeon separate. Just like the importance of species
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W AT E R diversity in a healthy river ecosystem, genetic diversity within the white sturgeon population is also necessary for survival.
A holistic restoration Beyond saving the white sturgeon, KTOI recognizes the needs of all the native fish and wildlife in the river ecosystem, and the needs and desires of the entire Bonners Ferry community. “We’re addressing the food web, not just fish,” said Ireland, as she describes the recent developments. In 2009, a master plan was developed for the Kootenai River Habitat Restoration Program (www.restoringthe kootenai.org) that includes creating deeper pools, in-river and bank structures for complexity, side channel creation, and reconnecting the river with its wetlands. “It’d be impossible without modern science and technology,” Greg Hoffman, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers biologist at Libby Dam, said. “(KTOI) tribal council and members recognize that
Kootenai Tribal Chair Gary Aitken Jr. and his son examine sturgeon fry. The Kootenai Tribe of Idaho has been raising and studying the endangered fish for more than 20 years
things have changed so much around them just in a short period of time that they need … technology to get back what they lost, essentially.” Similar to the thousands of jobs created when building the dams, the Kootenai River Habitat Restoration Program is already providing a significant economic boost to the region. KTOI is
committed, when possible, to hiring local contractors and using local materials. This summer, the KTOI will use 7,000 cubic yards of rock to create 2 acres of suitable, rocky substrate for sturgeon spawning downstream from Bonners Ferry. The area has good water velocity and depth for spawning, but the bottom of the river is covered with clay, sand and silt. “The eggs just hit the ground, roll and then because they’re adhesive, they suffocate,” Hoffman said. “They just become a big ball and oxygen can’t get to them. Their survival rate has been essentially zero for decades.” In the next two to seven years, these experimental approaches will prove their effectiveness. The fish live to be 100 years old and take 25 to 30 years to mature, so soon sturgeon from the KTOI hatchery may start swimming up the river to spawn. Gary Aitken Jr., the Kootenai tribal chair, is hopeful. “One day my kids, and maybe my grandkids, could even catch a sturgeon and keep it,” he said.
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W AT E R Idaho Fish and Game Biologist Katherine Cousins is spearheading efforts to restore the riverbanks in the Clark Fork Delta
BY CATE HUISMAN
The Clark Fork Delta: Lake Pend Oreille’s cultural treasure
or 60 years, since dams were built above and below it on the Clark Fork and Pend Oreille rivers, the Clark Fork Delta has been losing an estimated 12 to 15 acres of land each year. Along with it has gone wildlife habitat, cultural resources and recreation opportunities. Boaters, birders, fishermen, hikers and hunters have used the area for millennia to observe and hunt wildlife. Katherine Cousins, a mitigation staff biologist with Idaho Fish and Game, notes how the delta is losing its suitability for waterfowl: “In winter you can see birds at the waterline, and the vegetation is now almost a half mile back from the water, so waterfowl aren’t near any cover or foraging areas. If their habitat goes away, they will go away.”
altered hydrology,” said Cousins. The cattails, sedges and forbs that once thrived here are nearly gone. The cause is complicated, says Cousins. The sediment, rocks and cobble that once arrived with high water flows every spring are now trapped by upstream dams. Wind, waves and fluctuating water levels caused by the downstream dam have taken their toll on what is left. Pieces of the bank slump off when the water is drawn down each year, and when the lake comes up again each spring, these pieces are washed away. Addressing this loss has been a goal for Cousins for the entire decade
she has been with Idaho Fish & Game. Now she is spearheading an effort to reconstruct the delta and protect it from further erosion. But aligning the forces, the funding and the regulatory approvals to build the delta back up has been as complex as the alignment of forces that have torn it down. Assessments of environmental and cultural resources have to be made, and various agencies need to sign off on the project before work can begin. These are almost complete, however, and there is hope that the project can begin this year. Once the final permissions and approvals are in place, roadway construction and staging can start
Erosion and invasive species Aerial photographs from before and after the dams were built show dramatic differences in the amount of land at the mouth of the river and in the vegetation on it. A single species of plant, reed canarygrass, dominates the land that remains. “Reed canarygrass is good at surviving in wet ground and adapting to highly disturbed areas with 54
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W AT E R soil and recruitment of vegetation in areas where there was the slightest protection from the high water wave scour.” Now the job is to provide that protection: bringing in rock and excavating soils on-site to raise areas high enough so they will be above the surface when the lake is at summer full pool, thus replacing portions of the land that have been washed away. Then protective structures will be added to ensure the land isn’t washed away again, and native species will be planted to stabilize the soil and replace the more recent invaders. The amounts of material required for such an undertaking are enormous. Just for Area 3, the project will require more than 55,000 tons of riprap, cobble and gravel; half a million cubic yards of dirt; and nearly Comparing the delta in the 1950s, top, with the delta today, 34,000 willow whips, which above, shows vast differences due to erosion from wind, waves will be used to build proand fluctuating water levels. PHOTOS COURTESY IDAHO FISH AND GAME tective breakwaters and benches between bendway weirs. The weirs – rock structures placed well underthis summer in a portion of the delta water at angles to the banks in side designated Area 3. “We want to do that first because it’s channels – will help prevent erosion by directing stream flow away from the eroding the quickest and is harder to banks. access,” said Cousins. The pesky reed canarygrass will be Let the restoration begin mowed and treated along with other noxious weeds. “We won’t get rid of all Working with Brian Heck of Ducks the reed canarygrass, but we will have Unlimited, Cousins noticed way back in greater diversity,” said Cousins. 2006 that “there was some retention of
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In the Kalispel Indians’ genesis story, they originated in the Clark Fork Delta – an important site in their history and culture. Members of the modern-day Kalispel Tribe have provided a list of plants that their people gathered and used when they visited the delta in the past. Volunteers will be recruited to plant cattails, sedges, forbs and other native species next spring. Based on her experience with a
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Kalispel Indians at the north fork of the Clark Fork River in the 1930s: Today’s tribal members hope to see rare plants thrive here again. PHOTO COURTESY BONNER COUNTY HISTORICAL SOCIETY
similar project in the Pack River Delta, where excavation brought out seeds that had been buried for 60 years and allowed them to sprout and grow, Cousins is excited about the project’s potential to recover some rare plants. “We are now taking soil samples all through the Clark Fork Delta to see what ancient seeds we will be digging up. Maybe some traditional plants, considered rare nowadays, will come from the soil,” she said. The project’s website, www.clark forkdelta.org, will help publicize the effort and coordinate volunteers. Teams will locate sources for and gather those 34,000 willow whips; control weeds, plant new plants, take photos, organize field trips and activities to educate the public about the project; and monitor new life as it develops, including plant life, small mammals and birds. Although funding is not yet in place to complete all 1,200 acres proposed for restoration in the delta, Cousins hopes that when the success of Area 3’s restoration is evident, more funding will follow to restore the rest. She’s been working on this for a decade, after all, and she appreciates the positive approach of Nate Hall at Avista, one of the partner agencies involved in the project: “He’s always working on what can be done.” That attitude, and her persistence, appear to be just what it takes to bring back the delta back.
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You can call me alpaca The other camelid
ou can’t help but smile when you see them – those winsome, fluffy creatures gazing at you through heartmeltingly long eyelashes. Or maybe that’s just me. Please don’t call them llamas. These are alpacas, and many Bonner County families are raising them for breeding, for fleece, for meat and even as pets. Like llamas, alpacas are native to the high Andes Mountains of Peru and are camelids (like camels), with a ruminant digestive system and padded, toenailed feet instead of hooves. And, though generally gentle of disposition, they can spit when annoyed. But unlike llamas, alpacas are herd animals by nature. They need other alpacas around them and do not thrive in isolation. Also, at an average height of 5 feet and weighing less than 200 pounds, alpacas are too small to be pack animals.
Instead, they are bred mainly for their soft, luxurious fiber. The granddaddy of northern Idaho’s alpaca farms is the worldclass Snowmass Alpacas, whose owners, Don and Julie Skinner, have been selectively breeding alpacas for more than 30 years. Alpacas bearing a Snowmass lineage can be found in countries all over the world. Currently the Skinners are raising more than 1,000 alpacas – some of worldclass championship quality – on their 750-acre ranch north of Sandpoint, along with cattle, horses, hogs and chickens. Snowmass hosts the largestgrossing alpaca auction in the United States, where they also offer educational workshops and seminars to the international breeding community. The 2014 Breeders Symposium and Genetic Advancement and Lottery Sale, held in May, had the theme SUMMER 2014
Some members of the Snowmass Alpacas herd. PHOTO COURTESY SNOWMASS ALPACAS
“Genetics by Design: Charting Your Course.” “We’re committed to creating excellence in this industry, all across the board,” Julie Skinner said. “Every breeder needs to be successful with quality genetics, so if we’re producing them and we can share them with others, it helps them; it helps us; and it’s part of what this industry is all about.” Some alpacas don’t meet breeding standards and, as with any livestock, may be sent to the butcher. “Anything alpaca that does not meet our breed screening standards is destined for (the) fiber or meat market,” Julie Skinner said. “Alpaca meat has been eaten since pre-Incan times. Today it is served in fine restaurants. It is lean and flavorful.” The Skinners have also given back to the alpaca-breeding community in a major way by
BY JENNIFER LAMONT LEO
5/8/14 4:06 PM
establishing the Snowmass Health Center in Chivay, Peru, at Casa Chapi, a boarding school for children whose families cannot afford basic needs. The Snowmass Health Center opened in 2012 and is part of Quechua Benefit, a mission through which volunteers have provided medical and dental treatments to more than 75,000 patients since 1996. J Creek Ranch LLC on
Clockwise from top left: Lisa Davies of J Creek Ranch LLC with one of her herdsires; Huacaya alpacas from Snowmass Alpacas; Julie Skinner and one of her champion animals; examples of sheared fiber and finished textiles courtesy of Snowmass Alpacas.
Wrenco Loop Road, owned by Tom Davies, a Sandpoint dentist, and his wife, Lisa, also has champion herdsires and show-quality animals handselected from all over the United States. Snowmass Alpacas and J Creek Ranch LLC co-own two world class herdsires together. “There are two breeds of alpaca,” Tom said. “The Suri alpaca has fiber that appears to be in the form of dreadlocks and is very silky. The Huacaya (pronounced wa-ki-a) alpaca has a very colorful fiber that is extremely fine and gives the alpaca a woolly and round appearance.” On the fleece market, fiber thickness and texture count. Fiber that is coarse brings a lower price. A professional shearer visits the Davies’ ranch annually each Memorial Day, concentrating on the most valuable part of the fleece, the “blanket,” or sides and back. This fiber is the finest, most lustrous, and most likely to be used in top-quality garments, fabrics and soft goods. The Davies’ future plans include creating their own private-label, highend clothing line. “Alpaca fleece is similar in quality to cashmere,” Lisa said. “It’s fine, soft, lightweight, warm and hypoallergenic.” After the professional shearer has finished, Lisa and Tom hand-trim the animal’s head. In the hands of skilled artisans, this secondary fiber can be used for pillows, felted table runners and even stuffed toys. Considering their ancestral home high in the Andes Mountains, alpacas are well suited for northern Idaho’s climate. “Alpacas are used to cold weather,” Lisa said. “High heat can injure the animals, and humidity is not
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INDUSTRY good for the fiber.” When temperatures soar above 80 degrees, Tom and Lisa employ fans and air conditioners to cool the flock. Julie Skinner pointed out that wetness, too, is a factor. “A cool, dry climate is ideal,” she said. “Too much wetness causes parasites.” Alpacas are an environmentally friendly, sustainable stock. “With their padded feet and gentle grazing habit, they are easy on the environment, requiring only grass pasture, hay and water,” Tom Davies said. “They can be raised on small acreage, and their fiber is a renewable resource that grows out yearly.” A properly fenced acreage with adequate shelter will deter most predators. The shorn fleece is sold to artisans who spin the fiber by hand into yarn. The natural color of alpaca yarn comes in some 32 shades, ranging from palest cream and pearl gray to deep brown and black. Ken Larson, owner with his wife, Lisa, of Pedro’s Pride ranch and retail
store in Sandpoint, says that alpaca, unlike some fibers, is comfortable worn next to the skin; it’s free of lanolin, to which some people are allergic. He recommends alpaca socks. “The alpaca fiber, because it’s hollow, creates a natural insulation without a lot of bulk,” he said. “It also wicks moisture away from your feet, to keep your feet dry. A number of firefighters have purchased them because they tend to be the most fire resistant of any natural fiber.” Selle Design Group, a local marketing/design company publishes Alpaca Culture magazine and is helping put Sandpoint on the alpaca world’s map. Jared Johnston, 47, and his wife, Meyla Bianco Johnston, 41, mail quar-
terly issues to 10 countries. “We have been very fortunate to work with many breeders, designers, artisans and alpaca-related companies in the U.S. and abroad,” said Meyla Bianco Johnston. Julie Skinner touts the alpaca as one of the world’s most unique and sustainable animals. “They produce the most versatile and useful animal fiber alongside of a very healthy, lean meat. They are also extremely eco-friendly, unique, lovely creatures and most cost effective to raise. We owe our livelihood to them,” she said. For people unfamiliar with alpaca fiber, Meyla Bianco Johnston recommends a visit to Pedro’s Pride. “Pedro’s is a beautiful retail store and the per perfect place to feel what the alpaca buzz is about,” she said. “Once you feel it, you will be hooked.”
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Blazing a trail in the panhandle On the Northwest’s own long-distance route, the Pacific Northwest Trail
STORY AND PHOTOS BY AARON THEISEN
n the 1970s, in the midst of a backpacking boom, long-distance hiker Ron Strickland had an epiphany. Strickland, whose trail name was “Pathfinder,” realized that an east-to-west, long-distance hiking route would sample more of a region’s varied topography – mountains, valleys and everything in between – than the ridge-running routes popularized by the grand-daddies of long-distance trails, the Pacific Crest Trail and Appalachian Trail.
A native of the Northeast, Strickland was drawn to the Pacific Northwest. In 1970, he hitched a ride to the east end of what is now the Pasayten Wilderness in northcentral Washington and hiked westward across the tundra-like terrain over the North Cascades and to the Olympics, the vision of a cross-Washington corridor forming in his mind. By 1972 Strickland expanded his route to include northern Idaho and western Montana. “The way I thought about this was that the original Northwest Territory was from the Continental Divide to the Pacific Ocean, so the trail should encompass that same area,” said Strickland. That year, Strickland conceived the Pacific Northwest Trail (PNT): Stretching from Glacier National Park to Cape Alava on the Pacific Coast in Olympic National Park, the PNT would tack westward 1,200 miles through subalpine spires, sagebrush, cedar groves, and, finally, to the sea. Over its course it would pass through seven national forests, three national parks, and a patchwork of state and private land.
Long Mountain, on the Selkirk Crest, marks one of the high points, both physically and visually, on the Idaho portion of the Pacific Northwest Trail
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Pyramid Lake reflects a calm interlude before the notorious bushwhack off the Selkirk Crest
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meat salami and canned beer.” In 1977, Strickland founded the Pacific Northwest Trail Association and began walking the halls of Congress for federal recognition of the route. The plans stumbled when, in 1980, a congressional study decreed, “It is overwhelmingly evident ... the trail ... is neither feasible nor desirable.” Strickland, no stranger to long slogs, was undeterred. Committed to the idea, he began rounding up like-minded adventurers.
A hiker curls up in a natural recliner on Pyramid Pass
Not every lead panned out “In the early 80s a would-be volunteer named Bob Matthews wrote in from Metaline Falls (in northeast Washington),” said Strickland. “He sounded very enthusiastic – he had plans to live self-sufficiently on a homestead in Pend Oreille County and do
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Unlike the other preeminent, longdistance trails, which hew closely to the contours of a particular mountain range, the PNT would traverse the varied topography of a region, and in doing so it would climb over four mountain ranges (the Rockies, Selkirks, North Cascades and Olympics) rather than following one. Strickland’s route-building efforts started in the Idaho Panhandle, a memorable experience, said Strickland: “In 1972, I took a bus to Bonners Ferry to start this expanded view of what I was doing. I stayed at a little campground in the Bonners Ferry area, and in this spot next to me was a family that was on welfare. They had been receiving welfare, in part, by getting bear-meat salami; the authorities had seized some bear meat from poachers and were giving it out to welfare recipients. They didn’t like it, so they gave it to me. I persuaded these people on welfare to give me a ride to the trailhead – and I persuaded them with a serious quantity of canned beer. So that’s how the PNT started in North Idaho: with bear-
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Wilderness, 50 years later
ept. 3 marks the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act, and Idaho boasts several superlative parcels in the system: Hells Canyon Wilderness, Craters of the Moon, Frank
Church River of No Return Wilderness, Gospel Hump and SelwayBitterroot. The latter three form the largest block of roadless lands in the Lower 48. None of Idaho’s designated wilderness is north of Highway 12. That may change – in time. The Idaho Panhandle National Forest (IPNF) recently released its draft revised Forest Plan – the first since 1987. The IPNF had a mandate to recommend potential areas for wilderness designation. Its recommendations included the Idaho portion of the Scotchman Peaks, additions to the Salmo-Priest Wilderness on the Idaho-
“Under the old forest plan, mountain bike use was discouraged; under the new forest plan, (their ban) will be enforced,” said Hart. New wilderness designation in northern Idaho in time for the 50th anniversary is unlikely; Congress has not sent a wilderness bill to the President’s desk since the Omnibus Land Bill in 2009, and electionyear politics in the Senate preclude potentially contentious, public
Washington border, and part of the Selkirk Crest. Although all of these areas have been managed as potential wilderness since the late 1970s, the Forest Service draft plan tweaked the boundaries for each, none more so than the Selkirk wilderness. “The Forest Service has always pretty much supported the Selkirk Crest, including Long Canyon, as proposed wilderness,” said Pat Hart, the Bonners Ferry Ranger District trails and recreation leader. “It’s just been a question of where the lines are drawn.”
lands debates this year. Next year, though, may well bring new wilderness to northern Idaho. Said Brad Smith, conservation associate at ICL: “Wilderness politics is very difficult, but I would say that of all the areas in Idaho, the Scotchman Peaks are the most likely candidate for congressional representatives to take action on, which is a testament to the awesome work the Friends of Scotchman Peaks Wilderness (FSPW) has done.” Sandy Compton, program coordinator for FSPW, says that the
Those lines now exclude the Upper Pack River area, including
current congressional climate of stalemate inspired the group to
Chimney Rock, Beehive Lake and Harrison Lake. Conservationists cheered the decision to include Long Canyon and Parker Creek, one of the last and largest intact, old-growth forest ecosystems in northern Idaho. Wilderness designation would cap a decades-long citizen-based effort: A Bonners Ferry-based group, the Boundary Backpackers, a predecessor of the Idaho Conservation League (ICL), began the push for wilderness designation for Long Canyon in the early 1980s. The line on mountain bikes, which have increased in popularity, particularly in Long Canyon, has also been drawn.
Melissa Compton in the proposed Scotchman Peaks Wilderness
focus more on stewardship work – trailwork, noxious weeds removal – than direct appeals for wilderness. “Now that the Forest Plan has come out and recommended about 60,000 acres of the Scotchman Peaks for wilderness, we’re going to start doing a push this year for people to start poking at their representatives,” said Compton. If the efforts of FSPW, ICL and thousands of citizens succeed, northern Idaho may have a seat at the next Wilderness Act anniversary celebration. –Aaron Theisen
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TRAILS The Idaho portion of the PNT passes by numerous subalpine lakes
contract trail construction. I was always eager to meet any new volunteers, so I went to his homestead and met him. He talked about finding a bride to come live with him on the homestead – he even put an ad in Mother Earth News. I didn’t hear much about him for the next couple years. Then his wife told me on the phone one day that Bob had developed ‘other interests.’ And that was true – he decided to take up robbing banks because there was no money in
trail maintenance!” Since then, Strickland and others formed the Pacific Northwest Trail Association (PNTA) to coordinate trail maintenance and act as a community for through-hikers. Finally, in 2009, as part of its Omnibus Lands Bill, Congress formally designated the Pacific Northwest Trail a National Scenic Trail, one of 11 such congressionally designated, long-distance trails in the United States.
On the ground, the formal designation means little, save for a few scattered, small signs with the official PNT logo. The PNT patches together singletrack trails, city streets, cow paths, highway shoulders, logging roads, American Indian trade routes, floodcontrol dikes and even a ferry. The formal route remains in flux, particularly where the trail enters northern Idaho from Montana. “I don’t want people to think the PNT has become so easy, with a blaze on every tree; there are still a lot of puzzles,” said Strickland. Idaho hides many of those puzzles: although it has the least amount of trail, northern Idaho boasts some of the wildest stretches of the PNT, including a notorious trail-less section from Ball Lake to Lions Creek and Priest Lake. The northern Idaho portion of the route, in particular, also passes through
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TRAILS country that has remained relatively unchanged for 200 years, a showcase of the traditional Pacific Northwest. Strickland has a special fondness for Bussard Mountain near the Moyie River. Said Strickland: “What particularly interests me about Bussard Mountain is not only that it’s very scenic, but there’s a mine there, Tilly Mine. I’ve been there several times, and I’ve actually met the owner, Bill Tilly, who had been mining that country since 1928. I live in the Northeast, and I grew up by Concord, Mass., site of ‘the shot heard ‘round the world.’ There’s no way you or I would ever be able to meet someone involved with this history, but I was able to meet pioneers like Bill Tilly on the PNT.” Whether they walk one mile or a hundred miles, bushwhacking or on boot-buffed trail, northern Idaho hikers will find plenty of PNT to explore in their own backyard. “The reality of long-distance trails is that the most important person on the route is the day-hiker. The through hikers are a miniscule proportion of the overall hikers,” Strickland said. “I rec-
Hikers on Abercrombie Mountain, in the Washington Selkirks. Inset, a portion of the Pacific Northwest Trail. MAP COURTESY WWW.PNT.ORG
ommend to people to just get out and sample the trail just for an afternoon and see how they like it. I think that people who do that will realize it’s so much fun they’ll want to go out more and more.” Map and compass skills are a must. Bear-meat salami is optional. Learn more at www.pnt.org.
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END OF AN ERA
Losing Coldwater Creek
BY KEVIN TAYLOR
One of 339 displaced workers, Sean Haynes is a Sandpoint native who worked at Coldwater Creek as a web designer. He hopes to be able to stay in the area, possibly by telecommuting. PHOTO BY BILLIE JEAN GERKE
he very factors that influenced Dennis and Ann Pence to open a national mail-order business in Sandpoint in 1984 – being surrounded by natural beauty, plentiful outdoor recreation, immersion in a funky, friendly community – are likely the same reasons that the city will not be devastated by the closing of that business 30 years later. The Pences, famously, launched a mail-order catalog with 18 nature-related items out of their home in Sandpoint and grew it into the national women’s clothing behemoth Coldwater Creek with 7,000 employees, $1.1 billion in revenue and 336 stores across the country at its peak in 2006. The company also made the Inc. 500 list of the country’s fastest-growing private businesses four years in a row, from 1992 to 1995. Coldwater Creek has been in a slide
since the recession, not posting an annual profit since 2007. The company declared Chapter 11 bankruptcy April 11 of this year, laying off the 339 remaining workers at its Sandpoint headquarters, and it began liquidating its assets. Will the news, despite being foreshadowed for a couple of years, rock Sandpoint? “There’s no way our employers in the area can absorb 339 talented people,” said Jeremy Grimm, Planning and Community Development director for the City of Sandpoint. But, while Coldwater Creek is a significant employer in an isolated small city, Grimm is not panicked. This is not like Flint, Michigan, with the auto plants shutting down. It’s not even like Bonner County a few years ago when the JD Lumber mill in Priest River was shuttered, sending 200 millworkers SUMMER 2014
into the cold. Grimm hails the local economy as robust, diversified and filled with the sort of entrepreneurs and visionaries that the Pences represented back in 1984. “We have a long track record of innovative and creative talent here,” Grimm said. He cites firms such as Litehouse Foods, the analytics startup Kochava, Quest Aircraft, Timbersled, Unicep Packaging, Tamarack Aerospace and more. It’s a long list. “The term that’s used is lifestyle pilgrims, people who have the skills and expertise to choose where they want to live,” Grimm said. Dennis Pence sounded prophetic on this topic in a 2004 interview with the Bonner County Daily Bee. “I am pleased we can build a great national brand here. The truth is we could be located anywhere. That is preSANDPOINT MAGAZINE
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COMMUNITY cisely why we are here,” Pence said a decade ago, citing the quality of life that attracted he and Ann Pence to Sandpoint. The article noted Pence helped found the Bonner County Economic Development Council (BCEDC) to attract jobs and businesses to the area: “The worst fate for this area would be for us to become a Vail or Aspen. We have to have jobs here to replace the ones we are losing in the timber industry,” Pence said. And it’s worked, Grimm said. “I guess the takeaway is we are an authentic community in the sense we’re not your typical resort town.” There is no doubt that losing Coldwater Creek will leave a hole in Sandpoint, but the very qualities of entrepreneurial spirit and creativity – especially in tech fields – that fueled the company’s growth will also soften its crash. The city, the BCEDC and others are partnering throughout May to hold a charette where Coldwater Creek workers and others can brainstorm potential new startup businesses and even offer incubator space.
“For a short period of time, we have access to 339 people who have a unique skill set and vast global experience, especially in fashion and retail and IT and finance. So what do we do as a community to at least plant the seed that you don’t have to leave?” Grimm asked. That would be fantastic for Sean Haynes, who spent the last twoand-a-half years as a web designer for Coldwater Creek. Haynes is a Sandpoint native whose tech career took him to places like Seattle. As much as he enjoyed working in the Emerald City, a return to his hometown was compelling. “I think the whole vibe for me was I could relax again and not have to drive an hour to be in the outdoors, plus being around the people that I missed; I have a lot of family here,” Haynes said. And especially to work in software development and web design, job opportunities he didn’t expect to be available locally when he was growing up. Coldwater Creek “treated their employees very well, everyone there was fun to be around. There was a really good vibe there,” Haynes said. He
hopes to be able to stay in Sandpoint, even if it means telecommuting to work for a distant firm. Shannon Barnes, who had worked more than eight years for Coldwater Creek in Human Resources, recently came across what she called “a dream opportunity,” to work for the global firm, Insights, which uses principles of Jungian psychology in human resources training. Insights is a tech-savvy company that allows Barnes to work from Sandpoint, where she lives with partner Diana Gore and their two children. Barnes said she realized Coldwater Creek was facing challenges, but “no way did I ever imagine the outcome that happened,” she said of the bankruptcy filing. “I left believing there would be some sort of shift that allowed the company to reorganize and continue. … I was quite devastated to hear of the loss. “The people there are amazing. Some of the most dedicated, hardworking, smart, talented people I’ve ever worked with,” Barnes said. Exemplifying the Coldwater Creek tradition of giving, Barnes has per-
What will fill the
But he and many others say the biggest economic loss will be the prolific generosity from Coldwater Creek and its employees – support for the arts, education, sports teams. The company has offered seemingly boundless support, said Dyno Wahl, director of the Festival at Sandpoint. There were lean years, Wahl said, where Coldwater Creek underwrote the entire festival rather than see it go under. Dennis Pence, she said, offered financial support to help erase debt, but also guidance in making tough budgeting calls and even advice to not rely on any single donor. “I’m grateful the festival and Coldwater Creek had such a long-standing relationship (dating to 1984) and I’m sorry it’s over,” Wahl said. Marcia Wilson, executive director of the Panhandle Alliance for Education, praises Coldwater Creek for extended and generous support. “This is such a sad thing for our community. We feel like we got
punched in the stomach,” she said of the bankruptcy filing. But even as Coldwater generously helped with major fundraisers, Wilson said the Alliance worked hard to diversify its funding sources and has also created an endowment for greater funding security. “Coldwater Creek has been wonderful,” she said. “Their corporate culture was all about giving back to the community.” It’s an ethic that remains with former Coldwater Creek employees such as Fred Colby, who has started the wildly successful Laughing Dog Brewing. Colby is supporting research into autism and has underwritten two local teams of cyclists that raised funds through the Race Across America. There is hope, Bonner County Economic Development Council head Karl Dye said, that one of the legacies of Coldwater Creek will be the impulse among businesses, “to give back to the community.” –Kevin Taylor
livia Metts, a regional economist with the Idaho Department of Labor, says the direct impact of Coldwater Creek’s bankruptcy filing will be a $41 million local change in earning and the loss of about 700 jobs – 339 employees plus a ripple throughout real estate, restaurants, healthcare and other professional services. Raphael Barta, of the Selkirk Association of Realtors, said the wave of Coldwater Creek layoffs will result in as many as 100 homes up for sale. That’s a significant percentage of a market that typically sees 800 listings at any one time. But it won’t be a crisis, Barta said, as there is pent-up demand as the market has recovered from the recession. He adds that many Coldwater Creek workers will adjust prices to rent or lease out their homes or sell quickly. “They will be absorbed,” Barta said.
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suaded her new employer to offer assistance to her former colleagues. Insights Marketing Manager Virginia Fraser said the Texas-based company will offer selfawareness workshops to help Coldwater Creek employees figure out the next steps after the sudden job losses. Jake Ostman, a web developer for 12 years, says he was rattled a few months ago with the realization that Coldwater Creek really was going down. Despite the parade of shrinking revenues in quarterly reports, and even three rounds of layoffs in four years, Ostman said he and his coworkers were believers that the company would turn around. Only in the last few months did he realize how dire things were. It was a wrenching decision to leave, he said. Ostman said his work group was cohesive and happy, filled with colleagues who were cutting-edge, creative, and who made it a joy to live and work in Sandpoint. “We were allowed to use the latest technology as it came out. We would use them in beta format and test them and improve them in production,” he said. “We were first-to-market with a mobile
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website amongst our competitors.” Over the years, “I had plenty of recruiters contact me,” Ostman said. But their offers paled in comparison to what he had with Coldwater Creek: “It was the combination of having the ability to work on the latest and greatest (tech) and being in Sandpoint. I had no reason to go anywhere.” In his travels around the West to pursue skiing and other outdoor activities, Ostman said: “I have never found a town quite like Sandpoint where you have world-class skiing and the mountains and the lake right outside your doorstep, but the town is still more like a normal town. You have tourist amenities, sure, but it’s still a real town full of real people doing everyday things. “I miss that about Sandpoint,” Ostman said. He’s on the outside now, hired as a software developer for National Flood Control in Kalispell and at the moment living with a sister near Whitefish, Mont. Though he mourns leaving Coldwater Creek and Sandpoint, Ostman suspects both the city and many of his former colleagues will be all right. “I know a lot of people over the years who have worked for Coldwater Creek and left to start their own cottage industries. It amazes me to think of all the different types of things that are going on in Sandpoint,” Ostman said. “At Coldwater Creek we had people in fashion and marketing and technology and copywriting, and they were all the best in their fields. There is a lot of talent to draw from.” In fact, Alivia Metts, a regional economist with the Idaho Department of Labor, said: “Bonner County has one of the highest self-employment rates in the state – and surprisingly there are a lot of IT and tech startups. There’s a lot of very innovative, entrepreneurialspirited people up there.” In a perhaps unexpected way, these are the sorts of attributes the Pences were seeking – and helped introduce – to what was then largely a timber and tourist town. And it may soften the loss of the 30-year run of Coldwater Creek that became such an icon in Sandpoint.
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Among the Kalispels How early Jesuit priests established St. Ignatius Mission on the Pend Oreille
ditor’s note: The following excerpts about Jesuit missionary Pierre-Jean De Smet and his activities amongst the Kalispel Indians are taken from “Inland Salish Journey,” a forthcoming book on the history of the Salish Indians during the fur trade era of the 1800s. Author Mike Reeb, at right, 75, a retired forester and Sandpoint resident, spent eight years researching and writing about this fascinating period in the Inland Northwest’s history. “Inland Salish Journey” is due this summer from Keokee Books. •••
Soon after arriving at St Mary’s Mission in the Bitterroot Valley, Father Pierre-Jean De Smet and 10 Flathead braves set off Oct. 24, 1841, for Hudson’s Bay Company’s Fort Colvile to detail Jesuit objectives and purchase food, seeds, tools and livestock. During the journey, he connected with two, wintering bands of upper Pend Oreille and got to know Chief Hoytelpo, who surprised the Black Robe with the band’s knowledge of Christian prayers. Hoytelpo told De Smet he had delegated a young man to the Pierre’s Hole welcoming of the Black Robes in 1840 to memorize and bring back prayers to teach fellow tribesmen. The amazed De Smet complimented the young man for his good memory and teaching ability as the Indians repeated them perfectly. After baptizing most of the band’s children, De Smet continued his journey down the Clark Fork River trail, finding small groups of Kalispels along the way, who all requested missionaries to come live with them. He met with head chiefs of the tribe’s largest campsite at Cusick Meadows, where he promised teachers would come within a few years. Arriving at Fort
Colvile in mid-November, De Smet received a gracious welcome and generous hospitality from Archibald McDonald, the chief trader, who encouraged the missionary’s endeav-ors. With winter approaching fast, De Smet stayed only a few days, then loaded the party’s 14 horses with tools, provisions and seeds; he also made arrangements to take possession of four cows with calves, a heifer and a bull, in all costing him $400 in American currency. Fort Colvile personnel had built up their cattle herd from a bull and two cows in 1826 to 196 head by the time De Smet arrived in 1841. ••• In the summer of 1844, Jesuit Priests Pierre De Vos and Adrian Hoecken, part of De Smet’s team, started St. Ignatius Mission on the north bank of the Pend Oreille River downstream from today’s Newport, Washington. Due to flooding in the spring runoff, they abandoned the site for higher ground downriver near Usk, Washington. Soon after assuming duties, Father Hoecken found the Kalispel society “animated,” labeling them a “Happy Family” devoted SUMMER 2014
Inland Salish Journey
to the Great Spirit. Especially in difficult times, the people neither complained, murmured nor backbit; and blasphemy did not have a word in their language. The Kalispels divided habitation between the large camas meadows on either side of the river from Usk to Locke, Washington, moving about in canoes. Other major campsites not previously mentioned included a hunting area on the north SANDPOINT MAGAZINE
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BOOK EXCERPT Father Nicholas Point’s engraving of old St. Ignatius Mission at Kalispel Bay on the Pend Oreille River, circa 1848. PHOTO COURTESY WASHINGTON STATE UNIVERSITY LIBRARY
Washington state from 1844 to 1854. Catholic missionaries relocated St. Ignatius Mission to Montana in 1854. Most Kalispels who made the move to Montana soon returned to their homeland along the shores of Lake Pend Oreille and the Pend Oreille River.
side of the Pend Oreille River where it joins the Priest River at the town of Priest River, Idaho. A south-facing bench below Albeni Falls on the Pend Oreille River provided winter camp for a large portion of the tribe. The site afforded protection from the wind with abundant firewood at hand. The Jesuit priests found the Kalispels (lower Pend Oreille) poor by white man’s standards and nomadic, in the sense that Indians fished for salmon on the Columbia and below Box Canyon in early summer, followed by a portion of the tribe hunting buffalo on the upper Missouri. Other Indians remained in the area to hunt and to fish waters of the Clark Fork and Pend Oreille rivers by utilizing sturgeonnosed, white pine bark canoes to travel from place to place, all living in peace with neighboring tribes. Thousands of deer dropped down from the mountains when snow reached 2 to 3 feet deep, making easy camp meat. Father De Smet, who wintered there in 1843, wrote that on a single day 40 hunters killed 300 deer. The Kalispels shared great love, obedience and respect for their chiefs. Effective in leadership, head chief Standing Grizzly Bear (baptized Lyola) and subchiefs spoke calmly and never in vain. The followers initiated the “task” forthwith. The Indians even consulted their head chief before marriage for sanction or disapproval. A man with impairment would not receive permis-
sion to marry, because the head chief believed his condition might pass on to his children. Each chief regulated hunting and fishing, gathering of roots and fruits, and delivery to his lodge. He divided the foodstuffs into equal shares, making sure each family received its share based on the number of mouths in that household. The old, the infirm and the widows all received an equal share of the hunt and the harvest. According to Father De Smet, by July in the second year of St. Ignatius, missionaries and Indians had erected 14 log houses, a barn and prepared logs for a church. They had 300 acres of grain growing enclosed by a pole fence, 30 head of horned cattle, a few hogs and some domestic fowl. The women had learned to milk cows and churn butter. The original St. Ignatius Mission served the Kalispel Indians on the Pend Oreille River in
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DOROTHEA LANGE, 1936. LIBRARY OF CONGRESS, PRINTS & PHOTOGRAPHS DIVISION, FSA/OWI COLLECTION LC-DIG-FSA-8B27245
In the footsteps of Dorothea Lange The search to find Bonner County families photographed in 1939
STORY BY CARRIE SCOZZARO PHOTOS BY DOUG MARSHALL
hat a sight it must have been. Not the eerie stump farms dotting the cutover land, as abandoned mill territories throughout the Selle Valley and Priest River Peninsula were called. Nor the farmers lured there by promises of abundant, fertile land. No, for photographer Dorothea Lange, those sights were plenty familiar, having crisscrossed America for the Farm Security Administration (FSA) from 1935 to 1944. She was one of 12 photographers tasked with documenting government programs designed to mitigate the double-whammy of the Great Depression and questionable land management that resulted in the phenomenon of the Dust Bowl. Her bestknown photo was nicknamed “Migrant Mother” (actually “Destitute pea pickers in California. Mother of seven children. Age thirty-two. Nipomo, California”). The sight would have been Lange herself, a woman in
a car – maybe the same ’33 Ford Model C wagon assistant Rondal Partridge photographed her atop of, as shown above. She likely would have been accompanied by Partridge or her husband, Paul Taylor, her large Graflex camera at the ready. She must have come to Bonner County to document how farmers were faring after a fire devastated the Priest River Peninsula in 1931, says Priest River’s Linda Kingery. One of the people she photographed was Kingery’s grandfather, Edward Dailey, along with other farmers and their properties in October 1939. All told, Lange took several hundred photos in Idaho: Mennonite farms in Boundary County, dynamiting stumps in Bonner County, even sawmill communities in southern Idaho. If so, Lange had an easier time than we did tracking down exact locations of original photographs and, more importantly, the folks whose lives those photos represented. But we’re getting ahead of ourselves, and a good story deserves a
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Above, the image that started the search for families that Dorothea Lange photographed for the Farm Security Administration in Bonner County in 1939. Titled “Crossroads off the highway in cut-over area. Boundary County, Idaho,” this photo was actually taken in Bonner County, at the intersection of Jacobson and Hickey in the Selle Valley. Today, it still has a remnant of old signage, as see at right. LIBRARY OF CONGRESS, PRINTS & PHOTOGRAPHS DIVISION, FSA/OWI COLLECTION LC-USF34-021677-C
proper beginning. It started, appropriately enough, with images and curiosity. We saw Idaho Statesman writer/photographer Joe Jaszewski’s 2012 article, “THEN AND NOW: Castoff land clear cut during the Depression now draws tourists to North Idaho,” showing the intersection of Jacobson and Hickey Roads in the Selle Valley northeast of Sandpoint. What if we could recreate the photos? Talk to anyone who remembered them? We scoured the Library of Congress, which houses 4,000plus Lange images, a fraction of the 270,000 images commissioned by the FSA from 1935-1944. Some photos, like the Jacobson-Hickey intersection shown above, had cryptic titles and misidentifications: “Crossroads off the highway in cutover area. Boundary County, Idaho” (actually Bonner County). These general captions led to the Oakland Museum of
California, which has 6,000 Lange prints and her field notes, from which the captions originated: Oct 23 – ’39 Bonner Co. C.G. Cox—portrait—(See Oct 20 also) Came here in 1936. Powder loan 1936 cleared side for bldgs, small amt of farm land. ... Has one son and one daughter. Son is married and has 2 children, boy and girl. Wife is from Nebraska.
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Titled: “Home of the FSA (Farm Security Administration) borrower who moved on this land six years ago, built log house and buildings. Cut enough hay between the stumps to feed eight cows, three calves and two horses through the winter of 1938. Three hundred and fifteen dollar landclearing loan.” LIBRARY OF CONGRESS, PRINTS & PHOTOGRAPHS DIVISION, FSA/OWI COLLECTION LC-USF34- 021800-C. This is the original King place with charred trees in the Daughter lives with parents and works at Sandpoint bank. Son is manager of co-op gas & oil in Sandpoint—Farmers supply company.
The subject, C.G. Cox, spent $800 for 80 acres, not including loans to clear the land. Humbird Land Company made clearing cut-over timberland sound easy. Cox is quoted as saying to Lange, “If I had to do it over again I’d never go on a place like this.” But Cox and his grown son, Clyde, stayed on, leaving a legacy that includes great-grandson Adrian Cox, whose family now owns Sand-Ida Services, the Best Western Edgewater and several convenience stores. At the Bonner County Historical Society, we found obituaries matching Lange’s notes and heard about Anne Whiston Spirn, whose 2009 book “Daring to Look” documented the author’s recreations of Lange’s journey. Spirn, who had visited northern Idaho to research her book and present a subsequent lecture in 2013, actually spoke with someone from Lange’s 1939 Boundary County photos – Lawrence Unruh, who passed away last summer. Maybe we could too? In nearby Priest River, the chamber’s Anne Sweetman suggested Diane Mercer, founding member of Priest River’s museum and owner of Mercer’s Memories antiques. Linda Naccarato was filling in for Mercer and shared stories about her grandfather, a Dust Bowl refugee from North Dakota. Naccarato, who serves on the Historic Commission, recommended Linda Kingery and former Priest River Times editor, Marylyn Cork. Cork coauthored “Priest River and Priest Lake: Kaniksu Country” with Mercer and Jeanne Tomlin. She suggested Kris Runberg-Smith, who, like Tomlin, is a granddaughter of Lucy and Charles Beardmore. Runberg-Smith wrote “Pioneer Voices of Priest Lake,” (published by Keokee Books), while her archi78
background left over from the 1931 fire, according to Linda Kingery. Her father, Grant Cary, bought the property from the Kings, and they lived in this cabin for a few years when she was growing up until it burned down in 1965. Her family moved the cabin, seen above right behind Kingery, to the homesite to replace the home that burned. She lived here until 1967, when the family moved to town. Her brother owns the property today
tect brother, Brian Runberg, undertook the national awardwinning Beardmore Building renovation in Priest River. Getting closer. Runberg-Smith recommended Elaine Savage, former Priest River Police chief and one-time Bonner County sheriff. Pay dirt! Kingery, 63, is the granddaughter of Edward Dailey while Savage, 59, is the grandniece of Edna Holley, whom Lange incorrectly referenced as the Stephen B. Halley family: 160 ac. $1500 purchase (269.67) $300 down—$150 per year plus 6% int—Humbird deal. From New Mexico last year June 1938. Boy in CCC. Trying to dig a well so won’t have to carry water. $135 land clearing FSA loan. Halley on WPA last few months was FSA grand client before then. Read Humbird ad in “Western Farm Life” published at Denver Colo—sent for literature and decided to come. “Got tired never raisin nothin.” 7 children in family. Oldest girl engaged to be married. Enlarged barn to almost twice its size built another room on cabin. 500 qts of fruits & vegetables canned. Orchard started. Farmed cleared place on shares last year—65 sacks potatoes from ½ acre patch.
Kingery and Savage both were instrumental to our photographer, Doug Marshall, tasked with recreating Lange’s photos. His Nikon D4 in hand, Marshall trekked throughout the Priest River Peninsula several times trying to piece together the Lange puzzle. While Oscar and Marie Evenson’s place was easy to determine – it’s now Brown’s Buffalo Ranch – other places proved elusive. Foliage – and time – obscured the truth. Was that the metal bridge at Macabee Falls? Or a location farther upriver? The situation was further compounded by Lange’s cryptic notes and the possibility that some photos could have been printed backwards. Marshall, who owns El Photo Grande, persevered, however, shooting the landscape that Lange had
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Titled “Evanson new home, looking across land which has recently been cleared by bulldozer. Priest River Valley, Bonner County, Idaho.” LIBRARY OF
Oscar and Marie Evenson’s place is now Brown’s Buffalo Ranch
CONGRESS, PRINTS & PHOTOGRAPHS DIVISION, FSA/OWI COLLECTION LC-USF34-021741-D
Norm Peterson, Tom’s uncle, brought his wife, also Myrtle, and easily identified Lange’s photo of the metal bridge just shy of Macabee Falls. Lawrence Dailey, Kingery’s uncle and Edward Dailey’s son, reminisced about Stephen Holley walking log chutes similar to one Lange photographed and the day when electricity came to the peninsula, when he was 18. We passed around Spirn’s book, Lange’s images and field notes, as well as carefully tended photo albums. Some things had changed, such as Evenson’s place, but others not so much. Kingery’s brother, Allen Cary, bought the old Holley place and used dynamite to blow stumps well into the 1970s, says Kingery. What else did people remember? Potlucks at the Blue Lake Grange, said Kingery. “Kids always went,” said Myrtle Westover, whose husband Bill remembers dances at Laclede. There were fiddle and piano players, said Tom Peterson. “A few fights,” offered Ray Harold. Going out to “check” the radiator, said Tom Peterson, which Bill Westover
documented some seven decades earlier. But what about other descendants? The trail might have gone cold if not for Tom Peterson, whose various jobs included 15 years working at the cemetery. “All the history of the community is laying right there,” said Peterson, 66, an admitted history buff. He had received one of our query letters via his mother’s sister. Three months and a dozen e-mails later, Peterson orchestrated a sit-down at Green Owl Tavern in March with several generations of residents including many whose seven to eight decades in the area meant they might have been around – albeit just as youngsters – when Lange photographed the area. There were Ray and Charlotte Harold, Earline Tarr and Bill Westover and his wife, Myrtle, who – we discovered over lunch – was born on the property well before it became a tavern.
Steve Holley, left, and Edna with two of their seven children, Orville and Cecil, in a photo titled “Farm family in the cut-over land. Priest River Valley.” LIBRARY OF CONGRESS, PRINTS & PHOTOGRAPHS DIVISION, FSA/OWI COLLECTION LC-DIG-FSA-8B35462
Descendants of Steve and Edna Holley, shown at left, are granddaughters Deana Holley and Kathy Cook with their mom, Betty Holley at the old Holley place
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Top, Edna Holley holds son Cecil at their “log house now occupied and enlarged” in the Priest River Peninsula; the Holleys came after the fire of 1931. LIBRARY OF CONGRESS, PRINTS & PHOTOGRAPHS DIVISION, FSA/OWI COLLECTION LC-USF34021790-C. At left, Betty Holley, who married Stephen “Cal” Holley, Edna’s son, and their two oldest daughters, Kathy Cook and Deana Holley, stand in the same doorway of the log home shown above
clarified: take a drink. It wasn’t long before the gathering felt like family: telling and retelling of stories meant to strengthen ties to each other and to one’s sense of place. But what about current generations? Were they doing the same? Many of the children and grandchildren had left the area, although individual families stayed in touch with each other. That begged the question of why the letter that eventually made it into Tom Peterson’s hands went unanswered. We needed an insider to open the door, says Tom. Does that mean the novelty of a woman with a camera and car in the Depression-era rural Northwest wouldn’t be enough to get people to open their doors now? Or maybe we’ve just changed how we view images and communications in general. A Facebook group, “You Might Be From Priest River ... ” helps people of every age group keep 80
in touch, and things like school and family reunions bring younger generations home for at least a little while. Maybe we’ll have to wait a few years and follow up on this story – maybe coordinate a reunion of descendants of descendants. What a sight that would be!
Photographer Doug Marshall, relentlessly following in Dorothea Lange’s footsteps in the Priest River Valley
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hey seem ever-present around Sandpoint and, in fact, they have been. Trains have figured in our history from the beginning – since those first tracks were laid in 1882 with the sweat of Chinese laborers.
rail lines come together to squeeze through our town; today, more than 50 trains a day pass through. That is a lot of trains. With increasing demand for oil and coal transport to the coast, the number may jump dramatically.
That trains are so pervasive here is owing to both history and geography. Sandpoint is known as the “funnel” because all major, northern tier
For a town whose past is so entwined with trains, we’re at a new historic moment. We can see down the tracks.
Mason Kiebert catches an afternoon paddle from Dog Beach – as an east-bound BNSF freight train passes on the Sandpoint trestle. PHOTO BY DOUG MARSHALL
Yes, there’s a train coming.
INSIDE: A TRAIN HISTORY • SAVING OUR DEPOT THE AMTRAK EXPERIENCE • RAILFANS • COAL AND OIL TRAINS A’COMING • TRAIN DANGERS
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‘Around a pile of mountains’ The iron horse galloped into Sandpoint and changed history BY JENNIFER LAMONT LEO
n old movies, train whistles signify that a character is missing someone, thirsting for adventure or longing for home. For Sandpointians, train whistles have meant all these things and more, such as money, supplies and travel. Without the trains, there arguably might not even be a Sandpoint – at least not the city we know today. When the Northern Pacific (NP) arrived in Bonner County in 1882, opportunities opened up. Trains hauled lumber to Eastern markets and brought back goods and supplies, and passenger travel boomed. Paul Croy’s grandfather arrived in Bonner County at about the same time as the NP. Croy, a lifelong Hope resident (now deceased), wrote a memoir of his grandfather’s early impressions: “Before the railroad, people were really isolated. … They had no way to transport anything that they raised at that time. It didn’t really open up until the railroads came through, and then towns cropped up all along the right-of-way. From there (Sandpoint) started blooming, because they could make all these industries and market their produce, sell their lumber, and one thing and another.” The NP began laying track in 1881. The most challenging section, an 8,400foot trestle spanning Lake Pend Oreille between Sandpoint and tiny Ventnor (now extinct), opened March 4, 1882. This first trestle, wooden and highly flammable, was replaced by a concrete and steel bridge in 1904. The railroad also built a 6,500-foot wooden trestle at the north end of the lake, from the Sunnyside peninsula to Trestle Creek, giving the latter its name. This trestle was later replaced by the present route. 82
PHOTOS COURTESY BONNER COUNTY HISTORICAL SOCIETY
Of course, these tracks and trestles were built not by an impersonal “railroad,” but by the hard labor of individuals – men from China, Italy, Scotland and Scandinavia – willing to do the backbreaking work of laying track. Chinese laborers lived apart from other workers, first in separate work camps and later in a settlement in Hope, isolated from their neighbors by racial and cultural barriers. By the 1920s most of the Chinese population had moved on. A small Chinese cemetery in Hope and artifacts at the Bonner County Historical Museum are all that remain of them. When the Great Northern (GN) came through Bonner County in 1892, it was known colloquially as the “Oriental Limited” or the “silk train” for carrying Asian silk from Western ports to Chicago. Construction of the GN attracted a sizeable Italian population who, unlike the Chinese, stayed on after the railroad was completed. An area of Priest River called the Italian Settlement, or simply “the Settlement” is marked by Settlement Road and Settlement School. In a 1974 memoir, lifelong resident Katie Littlefield wrote: “Building of the Great Northern improved conditions materially for a time, as it gave employment to a great many and revived interest in the future of the town. L.D. Farmin came to Sandpoint as agent for the GN.” Arriving in 1892, Ella Mae Farmin worked alongside her husband as agent and telegraph operator. “(T)here were perhaps a hundred people, twenty-three saloons and several houses of ill fame, two stores, two hotels, and one restaurant,” she later wrote. While her husband platted the town of Sandpoint, she named
Original Sandpoint townsite, above, hugged the tracks on the east side of Sand Creek, 1898
many of the streets and, perhaps inspired by the high saloon-to-resident ratio, started the town’s first Sunday school. The Spokane International Railroad (SI), was built in 1905, providing a link between Spokane and British Columbia and also serving the locals. The late Ella Cantrell, born in 1908, once recalled, “The train would stop and wait for a farmer to finish milking so he could fill his cream can and ship it on the train.” The walking/biking trail that runs along the north side of U.S. Highway 2 west of Sandpoint was built on a former section of the SI grade. Living far from a station didn’t stop rural passengers from hitching a ride. “Before the Long Bridge was built, people living south of the lake needed the train to get to town,” said train enthusiast Bob Camp. “They could flag down trains from a siding. The train would stop and the engineer would let them on. They’d ride into town and do their shopping and errands, then catch the train back to Sagle or Cocolalla.” “I would not have any history in the area had it not been for my mother’s arrival to Sandpoint from Chicago Christmas night 1945 via train,” said Marianne Love, a retired Sandpoint High School English teacher and lifelong area resident. Virginia Tibbs rode with soldiers coming home from the war with her 15-year-old son Mike, and the family’s English setter. “In spite of the drizzly, cold winter night and the walk through
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what was still a wild downtown with lots of bars, she stayed here from that point on until her death last July.” With the railroads came a boom in tourism. In 1919, the NP granted a request from Sandpoint business owners to run regular Sunday excursions from Spokane to Sandpoint in summer. “It will mean the assurance of Sandpoint becoming a summer resort of the very first rank,” gushed the Idaho News. In spite of the optimism, occasional mishaps occurred, like a 1904 freight derailment at the northern edge of Lake Pend Oreille near Trestle Creek. Today the site is a popular diving spot, where divers can explore two boxcars settled in 112 feet of water. A more serious derailment took place on July 7, 1985, when a broken rail joint caused a Chicago-bound Amtrak train to jump the track, injuring 81 of the 269 passengers and crew. “(T)hose involved in the Amtrak Empire Builder wreck 15 miles north of town Sunday said the community’s response to the unexpected disaster was so prompt, it appeared as though Sandpoint had to react to such disasters daily,” the Spokesman-Review reported. As ambulances sped the injured to Bonner General Hospital, school buses ferried other passengers back to Sandpoint, where schools and churches offered shelter and food. One passenger, a Minnesota sheriff, told the newspaper that he “wanted to hire a Bonner County officer to show his community how it’s done.” Sandpoint even experienced a train robbery. The Express Gazette reported tersely, “On 8/25/1902, a Northern Pacific train near Sandpoint was held up by seven men. Express car uncoupled, but efforts to dynamite car unsuccessful.” Three men were soon arrested in Spokane, fingered by an eyewitness. By some accounts, a fourth suspect, Herman Lamm, was rumored to run with the
Butch Cassidy gang. Lamm’s expert techniques at “casing the joint” before a robbery were passed among the prison population and eventually emulated by a young bank robber named John Dillinger. Dillinger brings to mind Prohibition, when crews were routinely intimidated by bootleggers wanting to ship whiskey from Canada via the trains. “A (Spokane International) car inspector was ‘stuck up’ by a whiskey runner and told at the point of a revolver to ‘leave that car alone,’ ” reported the Pend Oreille Review in 1920. “The man told the inspector he had lost two cars of booze and if he lost any more ‘somebody would get his.’ The car inspector reported the matter at the station at Eastport and Deputy Collector Young took possession of the car when it reached the American side of the line. Twenty-three cases of whiskey were taken from the car. … (T)rainmen were threatened with dire vengeance if more whiskey shipments were tipped off to the customs officers.” This Canadian liquor was then sold to rural roadhouses and urban speakeasies. In Spokane, several speakeasies were clustered conveniently near the Great Northern depot. Sandpoint’s own depot, built in 1916, is the oldest remaining passenger depot along the old Northern Pacific line. (See story on depot, page 84.) The train whistle of yore is now a blast heard for miles. Local SUMMER 2014
Great Northern Engine No. 29, a 2-6-0 slide valve engine, with train of logs at Forest Siding in the Selle Valley north of Sandpoint, 1910
passenger travel faded out in the 1960s. Only two, long-haul Amtrak passenger trains serve Sandpoint now: one headed east to Chicago and the other west to Seattle or Portland. Freight hauling remains key, even as environmental and safety concerns over coal trains and oil tankers are debated. But one thing hasn’t changed. The rails remain Sandpoint’s arteries, pulsing with life and linking us to the rest of the continent with bands of steel.
Trains came right through downtown along Fifth Avenue until tracks were removed in the late 1990s.
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REJUVENATING OUR 98-YEAR-OLD LANDMARK da BY CATE HUISMAN
The Sandpoint railroad depot, above, not long after its construction in 1916. MATT right, Aric Spence and Mayor Carrie Logan led the charge to save it. PHOTO BY BILLIE JEAN GERKE SCHMITT COLLECTION, BONNER COUNTY HISTORICAL SOCIETY. At
ric Spence, a longtime Sandpoint resident, is concerned his town is losing its history. So when he heard five years ago that the town might lose its historic rail depot, he became alarmed. The depot is the last surviving building of the original townsite east of Sand Creek – and one of the oldest buildings in town. It is on the National Register of Historic Places. Built in 1916, for its first several decades the depot was a metaphorical front door for visitors and new residents, designed to make the city proud. Constructed of brick in a neo-Gothic style, it has terrazzo floors, white tile wainscoting and benches of polished wood. The roof, with overhangs that once curved gracefully outward, was covered with colored tiles. As train traffic gave way to cars and airplanes in the 1960s, the depot saw declining use and with it, less maintenance. The gable ends were removed when the gutters rotted and fell off, and then bricks, mirrors and brass fixtures 84
wandered off with vandals. When tiles fell from the waiting room ceiling in 2009, the building was closed, and Amtrak passengers were left to shiver on the platform outside. Then the Sand Creek Bypass was built just west of the depot. “Amtrak claimed their access to the depot was compromised, so they asked ITD (Idaho Transportation Department) to provide mitigation funds,” said Spence, 43. Given the deteriorating condition of the building and its position marooned between the bypass and the tracks, Amtrak planned to abandon the depot and use the money to construct a new stop outside downtown. That’s when Spence got to work. A website designer by profession, he launched sandpointtrainstation.com to showcase the depot and enlisted the help of the city’s Historic Preservation Commission and then-city councilwoman (now mayor) Carrie Logan, in a protracted but ultimately successful effort to save the depot. After receiving
assurances that access would remain adequate once the bypass was completed, Amtrak agreed to keep its stasta tion stop in place and use the $922,000 in mitigation funds to repair the depot. Even with that kind of money, it’s not possible to restore the depot to its original condition. “Amtrak’s intent, and ours, is to make it look as much like it did when it was first constructed,” said Logan. The roof will be replaced, and the distinctive gables, parapets and brickwork will be renewed and repointed to replace the mormor tar lost through a century of weathering. The invisible but essential bones of the building will be rebuilt and modernized. A new HVAC system will be installed, plumbing replaced and electrical system updated. Best of all, passengers will once again be able to use the depot. “The reason why the depot’s so special is it’s still in use,” said Spence. Once renovations are complete, it will be among the few original Northern Pacific depots still sheltering waiting train travelers. Although funding won’t allow renovation of the entire interior, a new main entrance and small waiting room will be created at the south end under the portico. There, the windows, interior walls, terrazzo flooring and tile wainscoting will be refurbished to help modern passengers experience the style and substance of the original building. Work is to begin this summer. By the year’s end, this piece of our history, at least, should be secure, ready to shelter passengers into its second century.
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BY AARON THEISEN
the only whistle-stop in Idaho
he allure of Amtrak’s long-distance Empire Builder is, in part, time. The route, which runs from Chicago to Seattle and back daily, takes 36 hours with no delays. (More on that later.) A direct flight takes approximately one-10th of the time for roughly the same price. The duration hasn’t dampened enthusiasm for riding the rails. Now in its 85th year, the Empire Builder is Amtrak’s most popular long-distance route; in 2013, approximately 530,000 passengers boarded the silver, two-level train. More than 9,000 of those passengers – up from 5,606 in 2010 – boarded in Sandpoint, Amtrak’s only stop in Idaho. The irony is that the Empire Builder’s namesake, James J. Hill – he who famously declared “Give me snuff, whiskey and Swedes, and I’ll build a railroad to Hell” – chose the Great Northern route for its direct access to Pacific ports. Those tracks reached Seattle in 1893 and are today’s Empire Builder route. Hill reputedly said, “What we want is the best possible line, shortest distance, lowest grades, and least curvature we can build. We do not care enough for Rocky Mountains scenery to spend a large sum of money developing it.” Fortunately for passengers on the Empire Builder, much of that Rocky Mountains scenery remains relatively undeveloped. The train-travel experience remains pleasantly old-fashioned, too, free of the travel-souring tactics that airlines have adopted. “I hear a lot of people on the train who say ‘I love that I didn’t have to go through security, that I didn’t have to
Amtrak’s scheduled stops in Sandpoint arrive in the middle of the night, inset. PHOTO BY KATIE KOSAYA. In 2011 the westbound train ran late, creating a rare daytime photo opportunity as it crossed the Sandpoint trestle. PHOTO BY PHILIPPE JORDI
take my shoes off,’ ” said Mari Hirabayashi, marketing and sales manager for Amtrak. “And, for the most part there are not a lot of hidden fees that surprise the passenger.” Melody Circo, of the Greater Sandpoint Chamber of Commerce, notes that trains are appealing to an older population, because you just get on and stay. Aric Spence of Sandpoint is a fervent fan of trains, both as an observer (see stories on railfans and the depot, pages 84 and 87) and as a passenger. “People sometimes complain about the time that the Empire Builder arrives in Sandpoint, but I like that I can hop on the train in the middle of the night, have breakfast in the Cascades at 7 a.m. and be in Seattle at 10 a.m. and not have spent a day driving,” said Spence. Rail travelers seem to prefer a simpler way to travel once they reach their destinations, too. Particularly because train depots traditionally anchor downtown areas, rail travelers can often link together vehicle-free vacations. For example, rail visitors to Whitefish, Mont. – the fifth-most popular Empire Builder destination in 2013 – can board the community’s business-subsidized SNOWBus and ride directly from the train depot to Whitefish Mountain Resort in the winter. Likewise, travelers to Sandpoint can ride from downtown to
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TRAINS Schweitzer on the SPOT bus. Furthermore, on state lines such as Amtrak Cascades, cyclists can simply roll their bike on to a dedicated rack with a prior reservation. On other lines such as the Empire Builder, travelers can buy a bike box for $15 and check the cargo like any other piece of luggage. Cyclists can check folding bicycles for free. Hirabayashi says that Amtrak is putting together a bike task force to investigate how to serve cyclists better. Amtrak is also working on bringing reliable Wi-Fi onto its trains, with posts planted along the route to maintain connectivity. Hirabayashi added, “Amtrak passengers love being either totally online or totally checked out.” Or, just checking out the scenery. “I think people also love trains where there’s the parts of the route that you’d never be able to see by car,” says Hirabayashi. “Passengers really fall in love with just looking out the window.” Recently, the Empire Builder’s schedule has been derailed by a 21st century boom: the oil fields in North Dakota. Although the federal government mandates that Amtrak be assured of
delivering on-time trains, overtaxed tracks in North Dakota have resulted in consistent and significant delays for Empire Builder passengers – up to 12 or 13 hours. To mitigate the delays, Amtrak recently adjusted station times to the west of the oil fields. (The westbound train is now scheduled at 1:19 a.m. in Sandpoint). Furthermore, Burlington Northern Santa Fe, which owns the tracks on which the Empire Builder runs, will begin laying down more than 80 miles of new tracks and doing repairs to existing tracks to spread out the train burden. But this, too, will take time. The schedule changes may work to the advantage of Inland Northwest rail passengers, who have traditionally had the exceptionally beautiful Selkirk Mountains and Kootenai River valley pass by under the cover of darkness. The wait doesn’t seem to bother most rail passengers. “My experience is that rail passengers often have a lot of loyalty for a different way to travel,” said Hirabayashi. “Somebody who possesses a love of train culture will keep coming back.” Circo agreed, saying, “There’s one thing about trains – there’s definitely a
built-in clientele.” Like bed-and-breakfast enthusiasts, rail travelers pay for the luxury of a slower pace. And, while train-car demographics tend to skew older, the appeal of slow travel may spread in a world where everything else is speeding up. “I foresee that, for people who are so busy and are on their devices and just want to disconnect for a while, trains will start to come back in favor,” said Spence. “I think the pace at which we travel – mentally, I mean – really affects people more than they realize. So the chance to disconnect really has a lot of meaning.”
RAILROAD READS NOTABLE BOOKS CAPTURE MANY REFLECTIONS OF TRAINS AROUND HERE
Take the Train to Town By Paul Rechnitzer This history of the railroads of Bonner County compiles almost 300 pages of stories, documents and photos of their construction and early decades by a local historian and train enthusiast; he also penned a sequel, “Corbin’s Road.” 86
Train Dreams By Denis Johnson By a National Book Awardwinning novelist, this novel is set in the “Moyea” River canyon outside Bonners Ferry. It’s the story of Robert Granier, a day laborer at the turn of the century living a hardscrabble life suffused with real, and surreal, events.
Housekeeping By Marilynne Robinson Trains have a background role in this acclaimed novel tracing three generations of women and set in a fictionalized Sandpoint, aliased as “Fingerbone, Idaho.” By a Sandpoint native and Pulitzer Prize-winning author, it was also a movie.
Beyond the Sand Creek Bridge By Scott Wyant This first novel by a Seattle lawyer is set in the 1882 Northern Pacific Railroad camp at Hope. It’s the tale of a murder and trial that reveals uncomfortable truths about treatment of the Chinese workers who built the railroads.
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BY AARON THEISEN
Freight trains snake their way across Lake Pend Oreille. PHOTO BY
‘RAILFANS’ LOVE US FOR OUR TRAINS
“A retired engineer with a wife who likes to go shopping is a pretty attractive tourist model,” said Spence. In Sandpoint, railfans compose a small but steady stream of tourists. Circo estimates that of the approximate 1,200 visitor’s information packets the chamber mails out annually, as many as 200 request a railfan brochure. That’s in addition to around 50 phone calls and 150 drop-in visitors. Circo said: “In 2009, we had one of the old steam engines roll through Sandpoint, and we looked out the window (at the chamber’s office) and our parking lot was absolutely packed – and we weren’t even anywhere near the route!” As much of a draw as the trains are to out-of-towners, longtime locals often feel a closer sense of nostalgia. “I didn’t necessarily grow up with a love of trains, but living in Sandpoint for 38 years they’ve just been a part of my life,” said Spence. “The sound of them, the visual of them, all of it to me is very familiar; it’s a very familiar thing when so many other things have changed in this town.”
The ‘Funnel’ for northern-tier rail lines
s the only Amtrak stop in Idaho, Sandpoint is a hub for vacationers who travel by train. But it’s also a hub for vacationers who travel to see the trains: the so-called “railfans.” Sandpoint is the largest funnel – the site where east-west railways in the northern states converge – in the Northwest. The confluence here of three northern-tier rail lines means that some 50 trains rumble through Sandpoint day and night, carrying cargo from Chicago, Seattle and Canada. The heavy train traffic draws railfans from even farther away. Some come to view the trains themselves; some come for the architecture and ancillary machinery that compose one of the largest switching yards in the region. Overwhelmingly, railfans come with cameras in hand. “I’m struck by trains that travel through such beautiful scenery – the juxtaposition between the two, the natural beauty and the industrial,” said Aric Spence, a Sandpoint resident and consummate train buff. “Trains traditionally were built in river valleys for practical construction reasons, which means that in North Idaho we can photograph trains on the lake, near the Kootenai River and elsewhere.” Spence notes that because Sandpoint is a funnel location, a number of different areas to photograph are within walking distance of one another. “You can’t find a better place to take pictures of trains in America,” said Melody Circo, of the Greater Sandpoint Chamber of Commerce. Nostalgia stokes most railfans’ interest, whether it’s for personal experiences or that of an older family member. “Many of them are engineers who have driven this route and only seen it at night, so now they’re coming back to experience it during the day,” said Circo. Spence notes that several small towns – Folkston, Ga., and Rochelle, Il., for example – have embraced railfans.
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COAL/OIL TRAINS A’COMING TRAFFIC INCREASE HEIGHTENS POTENTIAL HARM BY CATE HUISMAN Endless coal train on the shores of Lake Pend Oreille. PHOTO BY SANDY COMPTON
rain traffic through Sandpoint is a familiar part of our heritage. We’re used to hearing train whistles in the distance, and if we have to wait occasionally for a train to pass, it’s a modest price to pay for the efficiency of rail shipment. But our relationship with trains is on track to change. Coal and oil shipments through town have increased dramatically in the past five years, and three major coal and eight oil-shipping facilities are currently under consideration for construction in Oregon and Washington. If all of them were built, train traffic through our town could double from the increased numbers already in place. This prospect has raised alarms not only in Sandpoint but in other communities along the tracks. In Bonner County, there are an astounding 144 “at-grade” crossings where we wait for trains to pass. A report by the group Forest Ethics states, “Communities with trains running through them could face an increase of more than four hours a day of waiting at the tracks if all the oil-by-rail and coal train proposals come to fruition.” More chilling is the effect these trains will have on emergency response times, as ambulances and fire trucks will need to wait more often. Pollution is another concern. Coal dust blowing off uncovered coal cars has the potential to foul both our air and our water as trains pass along waterways such as Lake Pend Oreille. Derailments could dump coal or oil directly into the lake, and although coal is an organic substance, it contains traces of toxins, including arsenic, mercury and lead, that can leach into the water. Exhaust from the five diesel engines necessary to pull each mile-long train will also contribute to air pollution. A derailment of a volatile oil train, followed by an explosion, is the scariest proposition. Within the past year, oil train accidents have caused fiery explosions in Alabama, North Dakota, New Brunswick, Canada, and Quebec, Canada, where 47 people were killed and a significant portion of the town of Lac-Mégantic was destroyed. “These suddenly focused attention on the very real danger of a highly volatile oil product, in contrast to the export of coal that is bad in a less obvious way,” said Gary Payton, an active environmental advocate in Sandpoint. The movement of goods by train is controlled by shippers at one end and receivers at the other, and for those of us in the middle, options are limited. Given the magnitude of concern, communities along the tracks have begun to act, including Sandpoint.
The City Council in the past year has passed resolutions insisting that federal standards be created to track chemical components of rail shipments, that safety regulations for tank cars be implemented, and that plans for response to a derailment be reviewed and include the city in the process. Taking a longer view, the resolutions request also that “potential impacts to Sandpoint’s public safety, environment, economy, and traffic” be included in environmental reviews of the proposed shipping terminals. Such reviews are required by federal law, but in some cases they cover only environmental effects at the location of the terminal itself. The process of completing these reviews is complex, says Payton, and will last for the next several years. In the meantime, other cities have passed resolutions as well. The City of Sandpoint, Lake Pend Oreille Waterkeeper and Idaho Conservation League are working with towns along the tracks to raise their awareness. Go online to www.idahoconservation.org or www.lakependoreille waterkeeper.org to learn more about those efforts.
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DANGER ON THE RAILS IN ANY COLLISION THE TRAIN WINS
BY BILLIE JEAN GERKE
PHOTO BY RICHARD HEINZEN
ne constant is sure in any type of train collision: The train wins. Motorists and pedestrians often lose at the cost of their very lives. Another outcome seems sure: Accidents are often precursors to railroad crossing upgrades. With 144 railroad crossings in Bonner County and freight traffic projected to possibly double in this corridor, the threat is everpresent. At no time was that more evident than last November and December, when two young residents lost their lives at uncontrolled, highway-rail grade crossings in Elmira and Sagle. Before Kayle Porter, 19, died at Elmira Road Nov. 27, the Idaho Transportation Department (ITD) had placed priority on upgrading crossings at Homestead, the site of another fatality, and at North Cocolalla Loop and East Dufort roads. Porter’s death bumped Elmira ahead for improvements this year, according to Ryan Hawkins, ITD traffic engineer for District 1. “I have to give BNSF a lot of credit. They really stepped up and want to help us with this crossing,” he said. In total, only 19 crossings in the county are currently controlled with crossing arms. “The budget to remediate is not going to increase any time soon,” Hawkins said, adding that the statewide budget is only $2.5 million for rail safety each fiscal year, or about $500,000 per district. “If I spent 100 percent of the monies in Bonner County, neglecting the other four counties, and did not build any quad gate installations, it would take 62.5 years to improve every crossing in just Bonner County.” Bonner County has seen 63 train collisions since 1993. The frequency went from about six a year in the 1990s to one or two a year in the 2000s. Then 2013 saw five collisions, two of them fatal, including Porter and Kaitlin Brosh, 25, at Heath Lake Road Dec. 31. One of the more horrific accidents occurred on Algoma Spur
Road in 2000, when three teenagers were killed. That crossing, the site of two other fatalities and one serious injury, had already been pegged for safety upgrades when Michael Caven, Donald Van Ness and Katie Gage were struck. Not all accidents involve vehicles. Travis Carter, 17, was killed on foot in April 1996 at Whiskey Jack Road – a crossing that had been the site of a triple fatality in 1991. The double set of tracks finally received upgrades following Carter’s death. Another pedestrian, 28-year-old Erin Likkel, was killed in December 2012 as she walked along the tracks toward the Sandpoint Depot, where she intended to catch the eastbound Amtrak. A train can extend 3 feet or more beyond the rail, putting pedestrians who venture near tracks at risk. Since Operation Lifesaver, a nationwide public information program, was introduced in 1972, train/motor vehicle collisions have declined 83 percent. Still, a person or a vehicle is hit by a train about every three hours, according to the organization’s website, www.oli.org. Motorists are 20 times more likely to die in a crash with a train than a crash with a vehicle. The weight ratio is 4,000-to-1. A train engineer can do little else than blow a whistle – an average freight train traveling 55 mph takes a mile to come to a stop. As trains are ever-present around Sandpoint, motorists must heed the danger. As the Operation Lifesaver slogan says, “See tracks. Think train.” Look up www.oli.org for safety tips and more information.
MAP COURTESY ALICE PENCE/IDAHO TRANSPORTATION DEPARTMENT
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Best of Sandpoint in Pictures
For 10 years now, SandpointOnline.com has featured a photo diary of local life called â€œSandpoint in Picturesâ€? with a Pick of the Month contest. Herein we present a few of those winning images. Browse hundreds of photos submitted over the years at SandpointPictures.com.
Jay Mock :: Winged Wonder June 2007 067-097_SMS14v2.indd 90
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Ryan McGinty :: Sandpoint Salute July 2012 Al Seger :: Silent Silhouettes November 2009
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Best of Sandpoint in Pictures
Rick Miller :: To the Moon August 2011 Steve Jamsa :: Rough-legged Hawk April 2013
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John Chaplin :: Table for 4 July 2010
Haley Sorbel :: Jumping for Joy June 2009 067-097_SMS14v2.indd 93
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Best of Sandpoint in Pictures
Betsy Canfield :: The Art of Patience August 2010
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The only thing missing ... is you.
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WATERFRONT HOME with guest cabin & 100’ of shoreline. 46’x54’ shop with heated woodworker’s room, front & back decks, mature trees. $285,900 #20140762
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OWN A SANDPOINT ORIGINAL 27 ACRE DAIRY FARM! Single-level 3000 sf 3 BR, 2.5 BA home w/guest wing or family room. Barn w/stalls, fencing & pasture. Shop, RV site & MUCH MORE! $497,000 #20140886
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WATERFRONT PARCEL w/custom boat dock, rock/granite bldg, deck, stairs & 2 BBQ areas. Over an acre of land in a gated community. Level bldg sites. $399,000 #20132769
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INCOME PRODUCING PROPERTY! 42 unit mini storage, home/office & add’l bldg site for more units! House (1560 sf), & storage units generate over $41,000 gross income per year. $599,000 #20140368
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R _ E
Modern Barn Raising Confidence guides couple’s barn-to-home project STORY BY BETH HAWKINS PHOTOS BY MARIE-DOMINIQUE VERDIER
s many husbands and wives can attest, building a house together can try the strength of a marriage. So just imagine the rock-solid fortitude of a couple who converts a 100-year-old barn into a stunning country home – all in the span of two labor-intensive, decisionfilled years. Sagle residents Jerry and Sharon Yates are just that hearty pair – living their northern Idaho dream on a 13-acre plot of land off Lakeshore Drive in a beautifully refurbished barn. Their carefree and laid-back nature belies the enormous task that was involved, but the project of turning a dilapidated structure into a whimsical, charming home hardly fazed the couple from the get-go. As Jerry said, “We never thought about it being something that we couldn’t do.” To be fair, it helps that the two are retired architects. Jerry and Sharon ran an architectural office in California 98
and were also educators at California State University–Long Beach, before retiring to Idaho. It also helps that the Yates are decisive people. “We closed our office and stopped teaching in the same month,” Jerry said. “We moved up here three weeks later and rarely look back.” The Yates didn’t set out to turn a barn into a home; their daughter was still using the structure to house her horses when the first inkling of an idea was hatched. “Our daughter wanted to get rid of the barn, and we thought it would make a great studio,” Jerry said, noting that both he and Sharon are artists. They were drawn to the barn’s open feel, and believed it would make an inspiring workspace. “We purchased the property, and thought we’d clean it up,” he said. Little projects have a way of leading to bigger projects, however – and soon, the couple was knee-deep in several phases of construction. First they tore down the milking
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Sharon and Jerry Yates, inset right, transformed an old barn into a stunning home with lovely gardens. PORTRAIT BY DOUG FLUCKIGER
shed – on the southerly portion of the barn – and constructed a one-bedroom apartment on the same footprint. Next up, they had the barn’s foundation stabilized (“it was just sitting on logs that were beginning to rot”), rebuilt the subfloor and put the roof on. The final phase involved building a kitchen and all the finishing touches such as new doors and windows. The result of their tireless efforts is a charming, 2,800-square-foot home that has a distinctively Idaho ranch feel, with personal and artistic touches imparted by its owners. Sharon stained every shingle and board, inside and out. Because the original barn was in rough shape, they used what was salvageable of the original barn wood and had furniture made out of it. They gathered up old tin roofing that was lying out in the field for the great room’s unique interior ceilings. And the floors are made of lumber that was reclaimed from logs that had sunk in the lake. SUMMER 2014
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“I’m told its larch, but it looks like red cedar,” Jerry said. The carpenters used a particular method of sawing – using an old-fashioned rotary saw blade with one of its teeth knocked out – to give the flooring a distressed appearance. Contractor John Meadows helped guide the project along, with additional artisan touches throughout the home credited to Larry Reid from Hope. The craftsman hand-built the loft’s twig railing, created more than 100 switch plates out of birch bark, built rustic fences around the backyard, and fashioned the showpiece of the property – a hand-built gazebo that has since become the centerpiece for several picturesque family weddings. Their landscaping is just as artistically rustic as the home – tended to by the seemingly tireless couple. Rows of lavender – 3,000 plants in all – adorn the front entrance leading
to the home. Sharon grows the large crop for her business, Lakeshore Lavender Farms, a company she started after moving to Sagle. The business idea started innocently enough when Jerry and Sharon were replacing a small bunch of lavender with new plants. “We went to a grower near Spirit Lake, and she gave Sharon a whole tray of lavender,” Jerry said. “Sharon was so taken with the smell and look of the lavender sitting in her lap all the way home, she wanted to do more than that.” Sharon now sells lavender at the Farmers’ Market at Sandpoint. Jerry is an avid gardener, planting fruit trees and flowers and vegetables to his heart’s delight. Incorporating variety into each garden, Jerry has created a “North Garden” that’s more formal with pathways; the “Rear Garden” is a family space where guests can enjoy croquet and bocce ball, with
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a smaller flower garden and herb garden. And then there’s “The Orchard,” which includes cherry, apple, Italian plum and pear trees. To the south of the house is a “Rock Garden” – a dry streambed with rocks, lavender and other plants that deer don’t eat. So what’s this rural landscaper’s secret to keeping pesky deer out of his prized gardens? Jerry has developed, for him at least, a deer-proof fencing method for keeping the critters at bay. “The thing that’s most successful is we have an arm extended out at an angle from the top of the fence; it probably extends out about 2 and a half feet and has white electric tape on it,” Jerry explains. “The deer don’t cross something really wide, and we’ve never had a deer come in.” A garden tip worth noting! Living in a converted barn has drawn a fair amount of
attention from local residents who stop by the home for the Artists’ Studio Tour; and the couple had the opportunity of a lifetime to showcase their converted space when the popular network HGTV sent a film crew to feature the property on a show called “You Live in a What?” The show tours homes that had unusual beginnings, such as jails, airplanes, churches and, yes, a barn! Jerry enjoyed the experience, as he spent two days with the director, still photographer and videographer. “They talked with both of us, and asked about our ideas and history,” he said. The program aired in 2013 across the United States, bringing national attention to this quiet, little sanctuary. But for Jerry and Sharon, the property’s sense of peace and quiet rules the day. “When we look at the sunset, we’re looking over a wetlands area that’s lined with trees and the river beyond. There’s nothing but woods and mountains – and we enjoy a lot of peaceful walks,” Jerry said. But then an artistic twitch takes hold, and the energetic couple finds yet more inspiration just outside the doors of their home. “There are beautiful, long views from here – and a lot of painting subjects.”
Quality Without Compromise
From far left: Tin roofing material was salvaged from the property to become the great room’s unique ceiling; homeowner Sharon Yates stained all of the interior and exterior siding herself, including the main floor bathroom; a modern kitchen with cozy seating area is located just off the great room
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STORY BY BETH HAWKINS PHOTOS BY DOUG FLUCKIGER The Knepper family, clockwise from top: Kevin, Sydnie, Brooke, Lilly, , Loni and Angelina with one of their horses, Rhythm
Relocation case studies How two families made the move to northern Idaho
he lake, the mountains, and the fresh air … Sandpoint’s postcard beauty is an easy sell, inspiring many out-of-town visitors to have the thought of moving here. But contemplating a move, and actually packing up, is what separates the dreamers from the doers. Relocating to Sandpoint can be tricky. Making sacrifices is often a must for folks who trade in their city life for Sandpoint’s laidback vibe, but, as these families share, the positives outweigh the negatives. Loni and Kevin Knepper moved to Sandpoint in 2006 from California’s Bay Area after friends told them about the area. “We drove up and fell in love,” Loni Knepper, 44, said. The couple bought 20 acres along the Lower Pack River and thought they would build a second home where they would stay during holidays; after Loni secured a job at Coldwater Creek, however, through a “chance” meeting at a local restaurant,
the family decided to make the move a permanent one. “It was all about quality of life,” Loni said about the decision to relocate their family of four, including two daughters at the time, to Sandpoint. Since then, the Kneppers have adopted one daughter from another country, and two daughters from foster care – that’s five daughters in all. “We moved here to slow down, and it went the opposite way,” Loni said, laughing. They embrace all of Sandpoint’s recreational pursuits, and that includes riding horses out on the trails, skiing in the winter, playing on the lake in the summer, plus coaching the girls in sports. “When we lived in the Bay Area, it was a four-hour drive to ski so you’d have to take time off,” Loni said. Now her children can ski at Schweitzer on their own, even if Loni doesn’t go up. The Kneppers still make visits back to California to visit friends and family, but now that their daughters are SUMMER 2014
accustomed to a life of outdoor fun and adventures – they’re nearly perplexed about the minster of urban living. “Now my daughter asks, ‘What do people do who live in cities?’ ” With full, active lives, the Kneppers are happy with their decision to live in Sandpoint – but it definitely came with trade-offs. “Our focus is staying here, and that includes taking lesser salaries,” Loni said, adding the family has to stay mindful of conserving funds. The sense of community plays a larger role in the Kneppers’ lives, something they say they wouldn’t have found in California. “My kids are getting a great education at Northside Elementary,” she said, “and the connections we’ve made are deeper.” Her advice to anyone contemplating a move to Sandpoint would be to “piece things together” beforehand. “Make sure you know how to make a living – have a plan. And it also helps if you SANDPOINT MAGAZINE
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R _ E love winters!” Real estate agent Lauren Adair, who has lived in Sandpoint for more than 10 years, agrees:. “Plan ahead, and plan accordingly.” Adair said. She emphasizes that it’s easy for new residents to get involved. “There are volunteer opportunities for everyone. It’s a very, very friendly community, so don’t be shy. It’s full circle here – you get what you give.” Adair also recommends utilizing a Realtor or other service provider who’s connected to the community as a source of local information for everyday decisions and choices. Echoing the call for those who are relocating to Sandpoint to get involved is Kate McAlister, executive director of the Greater Sandpoint Chamber of Commerce. “My advice for those who have just moved here would be to explore all the volunteering opportunities we have and get involved!” McAlister herself is involved in the local theater scene, volunteering her
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time to numerous charitable programs including The Follies – an annual variety show at the Panida that benefits the nonprofit group Angels Over Sandpoint. “There is a plethora of nonprofits here in our town, about 140,” she said, “(plus) school volunteering as well as city government volunteer opportunities. We are an involved community and it shows. And we welcome the diversity of thought and talent.” She urges folks to take time to explore the area – from the mountains to the lake. “There is a lifetime worth of recreational pursuits here,” McAlister said. “You can find outdoor activities all year round, even in mud season!” Mud season or not, Sandpoint’s picturesque charms were certainly enough to coax the Hobbs family to relocate to the area. Bobbet and Victor Hobbs were living in Phoenix when Victor’s job as a pilot brought him to Sandpoint in 2008. He flew a group of investors up to check
The Hobbs family could live anywhere they wanted to, and they chose Sandpoint
out The Idaho Club and had the weekend to tool around the area. Victor came back to Arizona, excited about all that Sandpoint had to offer – including the fact that their three children, two sons and a daughter, could ride their bikes in relative safety. But it wasn’t until their 12-year-old daughter finally declared, “Mom, it’s time to move,” that the family seriously considered the idea. “When your oldest child is ready to move out of the city, it’s time,” Bobbet said. After secretly looking up Sandpoint on the computer, Bobbet was convinced and told Victor, “OK, I’m ready to move.” Their decision was hastened by the fact that the family’s home in Phoenix sold in record time. Now living on the Sunnyside
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Top 10 tips for relocating to Sandpoint
WITH FORREST SCHUCK
Forrest Schuck, a Realtor with Century 21 RiverStone and the presi-
find anything from six months of deep snow and limited access to an
dent of the Multiple Listing Service, offers his top 10 tips for factors
area where it barely feels like winter, a “banana-belt” situation, all
to consider when moving to Greater Sandpoint. A resident for about
within a 20-mile radius.
30 years, he said: “In that time, much has changed. The cool thing
6. South of town vs. north of the Long Bridge. Prices can be
is, the basic goodness of the people here and the stunning natural
better and the feeling more rural south of town, whereas north of
charms of the area aren’t going away anytime soon.”
the bridge there is Sandpoint, Schweitzer, the Selle Valley and high-
1. Trains. Bonner County and the north end of the lake have been transportation corridors from time immemorial. There are few places
ways in all directions. 7. Town vs. country. Each has its charms. If you prefer the coun-
in Bonner County where you can’t hear trains at varying distances.
try feeling, you can get it in spades within a 15- to 20-minute drive
Consider that and whether you want to cross tracks to get home.
of the city. If you want to walk to work and play, bicycle everywhere,
2. Schools. All the schools are good here, with many options if the public system isn’t your preference. The district is well run and the school staffs are caring, concerned and qualified. Pay attention to
and not have it matter if you forgot milk at the store, choose town. 8. Lake vs. mountain. Summer oriented or winter sports fanatic? Pick your poison, but you can have it all. 9. Rent vs. buy. It might sound strange given my line of work, but
school zones if you have a preference for a certain school. 3. Jobs. Finding work here has always been a little tricky, and
I often recommend that customers (and potential clients) rent for a
good paying jobs can be scarce and in some cases ephemeral. We
few months to a year (especially when from a much bigger market)
still manage to hang on, mostly, even in the face of the somewhat
to get a feel for how things lay out and how life is lived here. It can
elevated resort-area prices and cost of living.
make a difference as to where in the area they want to live.
4. Housing. While it can be tough to find reasonably priced hous-
10. Staycay vs. vacay. Within 100 miles, you can find just about
ing in this market, especially in town, if you are willing to commute
any sort of terrain and recreation as long as it doesn’t require big-
15 minutes and deal with occasional weather delays, it can work.
city amenities, palm trees or ocean beaches. If you need those – win-
5. Microclimates. With a little research and exploration you can
ter does get long – there’s an international airport two hours away.
Professional Movers/Licensed Contractor 106
e to w n
ra m o ve
ym a nd
1326 Baldy Mt. Rd. • Sandpoint, ID 83864 SUMMER 2014
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Recycled buildings Labors of love add up to good stewardship BY SANDY COMPTON
oss Hall once climbed the J.C. Penney building at First and Cedar – now Snow River – and made a picture of downtown Sandpoint. It was 1955 and (maybe) before a Fourth of July parade – there are no flags to be seen. Nonetheless, Sandpoint’s entire population appears to be on the sidewalks. I find myself looking for family in the clumps of folks visiting in front of businesses, a localized version of “Where’s Waldo?” Knowing Ross Hall, maybe he invited his friends and acquaintances – which was the populace of Sandpoint – to come stand around while he made a couple of exposures. “You can all go home now! Thanks.” Comparing this picture to now, I find that nearly all the buildings are original, but most of them have been repurposed. The only businesses on First from earlier times are Larson’s Clothing and the Panida Theater. If you look west on Cedar, the only survivors are Connie’s Café and the Tam O’Shanter, also known as the Tervan. Sandpoint has become a recycled city.
A recycled block In fact, the corner of Sixth and Oak could be recycle central. Face north in that intersection and rotate clockwise. You encounter first Redtail Gallery, formerly the Episcopal Church. Mark
Inset, Sandpoint, as Ross Hall captured it in 1955, and the modern-day, reclaimed corner of Oak and Sixth, above, featuring the Heartwood Center. PHOTO BY DOUG FLUCKIGER
Kubiak turned the building into an art studio and a home for Sandpoint Arts Alliance for a time. East on Oak is Foster’s Crossing, a railroad warehouse rescued years ago by Dick and Betsy Foster and turned into Sandpoint’s first antique mall. On the east side of Fifth, Domino’s makes pizza in the former Alpine Motors sales room – which explains the big windows. The attached Quonset-hut shop building once contained Alpine’s service area but now houses an auto detailing shop. Kitty-corner across Fifth, the Army Surplus Store was Sandpoint Ice and Fuel for decades, even after they quit selling ice. To the south, the Pie Hut occupies what were offices for Cenex CO-OP Gas and Supply, renamed the CO-OP Country Store and moved to Ponderay in 1996. The CO-OP, where a kid could get lost in long aisles of every sort of hardware, smelled of new tires and petroleum and occupied the space that is now Marketplace Antiques. Bizarre Bazaar is in the former CO-OP Auto Center, where once tires were sold and oil was changed. SUMMER 2014
In the old CO-OP Farm Store at the corner of Sixth and Church, once stocked with barbed wire, fence posts, corral panels and watering troughs, Evans Brothers Coffee has found a home. In the elevator east of Evans Brothers, rolled oats, chicken scratch, horse pellets, and bales of alfalfa once waited in dark, dusty rooms for a ride to the farm and farmers brought grain to be stored and sifted into trucks or rail cars for a ride to market. Now, the Sandpoint Climbing Gym occupies part of the building. But not the tall part. Continuing north along Sixth toward the point of beginning, we come to a cross-street dichotomy where two disparate buildings are being “saved,” one of humble beginnings and the other with a more glorious past.
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Shibusa Studios: An architectural lump reborn At the southeast corner – 525 Oak, an address a numerologist could love – the nondescript red-and-gray cube that housed Darigold is being transformed SANDPOINT MAGAZINE
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by artist Kevin Watson into Shibusa Studios. Shibusa is a Japanese aesthetic featuring “an enriched, subdued appearance or experience of intrinsically fine quality with economy of form, line and effort.” Watson and his building mate, interior designer, painter and sculptor Dion Williams, are enamored of the shibusa style, evident in the display room and Williams’ office. “We share the same sense of design,” Watson said, “abstract, simple, clean lines. Our art will show well together.” But behind door No. 2, Watson’s personal studio is forming, featuring dark purple, Moroccan décor accented by canvas-covered walls, a creative solution to what was once a walk-in cooler (the evaporators are still in place). “It will look like an upscale wall tent,” Watson said. The building itself, built as a dairy warehouse with loading docks, industrial roll-up doors and three walk-in coolers, is an architectural lump. Cement block walls support two massive steel girders salvaged from a railroad bridge holding up a flat roof. It could have been designed as a jail. Which begs the question, “Why this building, Kevin?” “I walked by this building on my way to work for eight years,” he said, “and the first time I saw it, I wanted it.” Now he’s got it and is following his vision. 108
Before and after: Pine and Florence. PHOTO ABOVE BY DOUG FLUCKIGER. PHOTO AT RIGHT, COURTESY CHRIS HECHT
Saving the corner: The Heartwood Center Across the street from Shibusa is the Heartwood Center, formerly known as St. Joseph’s Catholic Church, and the inspiration of Susie and Mark Kubiak. “It started with wanting to save the integrity of this corner,” said Susie. “We wanted to restore the building as well as save the trees and preserve the park-like setting.” With the help of architect Bruce Millard, landscape architect Karen Oleson and general contractor Jim Dustman, the Kubiaks have achieved their goal.
Oleson’s work outside is elegant and effective. “Karen not only designed the landscaping, she built it,” Millard said. “It’s all native plants that will take a lot of water or a little. And we solved the storm water management in an ecological way.” The building is “green” inside, too, with LED or LE fluorescent lights throughout and a zoned heat and cool system designed to maximize energy conservation. From Darigold to Shibusa, it’s a long step to Kevin Watson’s vision. PHOTO COURTESY KEVIN WATSON
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Wildflower Day Spa leases space from Chris Hecht for its new location. PHOTOS BY DOUG FLUCKIGER
The church itself has been restored to its original configuration. Gone with the Stations of the Cross and the stained glass windows is the balcony that was added to the north end of the nave. At the other end, under the brick arch that once rose above the chancel, is a stage with professional-grade lighting, a back stage dressing room, side curtains and a large stage front curving into a room that will seat 170 theater style. The arch and condition of the 1960s add-on at the south end of the building were the big challenges. A crack completely through the arch required special engineering to repair. Except for that, Millard said, “the original 1908 part was just fine. But anything added later, we had to do a major rebuild.” They have been successful. The former parish hall next door is turned into the Grove Room, meeting space with lots of light from big windows and a small serving kitchen for catered events. The connection between buildings, designed by Millard, is graceful and airy and gives the impression of being outside. In the real outside are touches that add beauty and functionality simultaneously, like the rock slab “waterfall” that slows runoff from the Grove Room roof and channels it into the landscape. The project has taken over two years and included disheartening moments – like discovering the crack in the arch – but Susie Kubiak is completely happy they have seen it through to completion. “For a long time, I’ve wanted to restore an old building,” she said. “That’s what towns should be doing instead of building out, especially with their great architecture.”
Sweating the details: Pine and Florence
said, “is that it should feel like you’re living in the country.”
Chris Hecht, whose recycling project is at the corner of Pine and Florence, has taken another lump of a structure – the former school administration headquarters and maintenance shop – and turned it into great architecture. “One reason I bought such a headache,” he said, “was the grandfathered wood shop.” Hecht has been teaching woodworking to Waldorf students for 15 years. It used to be necessary for them to travel to Garfield Bay for classes. “Now, the kids can walk here.” The building is a mixed-use dream: semi-industrial classroom; garden space; living quarters; a sod roof that gathers irrigation water to a cistern; and 1,000 square feet of commercial space occupied by Wildflower Day Spa. “I sweat details,” Hecht said, and they are everywhere. He used doors saved from the Cedar Street Bridge, timbers left over from the bypass construction and much metal siding, some salvaged, some not. Hecht distressed new siding at the street level simply because he didn’t want it to be reflective and distract drivers. One of the most unique uses of salvaged materials hangs from the eaves: snow-stops made of old band saws. A genius mounting system, which Hecht came up with, serves without penetrating the roof. It cost thousands of dollars to bury the power lines servicing the building, but “I didn’t ever want to see that over here,” he said, pointing across Pine at trees topped or oddly pruned to provide relief from overhead lines. A building tour reveals it to be a compilation of structures tied together by the metal theme and the idea of multiple use, “new urbanism,” Hecht calls it. “My thing about living in town,” he
A view to a school: Northside School Bed and Breakfast
Our last example of a building saved is not in Sandpoint, but on a hill above the Kootenai River in Bonners Ferry: Northside School Bed and Breakfast. I hate to be prejudicial, but the old school transformed is my favorite. Gene and Ruth Perry have created something new – and lovely – while holding on to the original essence of the building that houses it. Ruth herself went to school in the building, as did her father and aunt. Put into service 100 years ago in 1914, the school taught generations of kids. In 1992, it became a private residence, but it wasn’t until 2005, when the Perrys bought it, that true transformation began. Gene spent a career in California as an architect. He was tasked with creating what Ruth envisioned. “In my mind,” Ruth said, “I divided up the classrooms,” and where there were four big classrooms and a principal’s office, now are a dining room large enough to seat a full house; nine themed rooms, each decorated differently and each beautiful in its own right; and the private suite the Perrys live in. Cloakrooms that divided the classrooms are now hallways. Instead of three bathrooms (which were in the basement) there are 15. “We didn’t intend to create a B&B in Idaho,” said Ruth, “but we were looking for one to buy in California. We came home to visit and saw this for sale, and said, ‘This would make a great bed and breakfast.’ ” And it does, with preserved touches that hearken back to the building’s past: bird’s-eye maple floors on the main level; vertical grain Douglas fir stair treads 14 SANDPOINT MAGAZINE
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R _ E • FREE ESTIMATES • HIGH STANDARDS • HONEST SERVICE Northside Bed and Breakfast includes custom rooms like the School Room. PHOTOS BY SANDY COMPTON
inches wide and straight-grained fir flooring upstairs; classic school entryway leading into a staircase overhung by the Principal’s Office, a guest room I wish to be sent to, with windows overlooking the river and the stairs and decorated in subtle greens; rooms decorated by friends who went to school with Ruth, hung with compelling family photos and historic shots of Bonners Ferry; wainscoting made of the inner lining of the cloakrooms that once held galoshes and mittens and a
huge variety of coats and hats. You can almost smell the school lunch wafting up from the basement kitchen, where wedding parties are fed now. Almost. The common factor in these four examples of recycled buildings: They are labors of love. They are all in their own way beautiful, as labors of love should be. “Shibusa is my mistress,” Watson said. “She takes all my time and all my money.” He and the Kubiaks, the Perrys and Chris Hecht have all created examples of good stewardship of our past as well as the future.
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R _ E
Marketwatch: Feel familiar? Sandpoint-area prices going up, up, up With real estate prices in the Sandpoint area on the rise, buyers are feeling the heat. “I get asked all the time, ‘When’s the best time to buy?’ And the answer is ‘today,’ ” said Forrest Schuck, president of the Multiple Listing Service for the Selkirk Association of Realtors (SAR). “The inventory of quality homes is low. If a house shows well and is priced correctly, it will sell.” Indeed, the average sales price for a home in Greater Sandpoint increased an astounding 22 percent in the previous six months (Oct. 20, 2013, through April 20, 2014). In that same period, the selling price on vacant land in Bonner County went up a whopping 39 percent. “The real estate market in North Idaho is strengthening, with Bonner County showing the most strength,” said Jim Haynes, president of the SAR. “People are coming here, looking for their small acreage that they want to retire on one day.” While the number of sales remains fairly
steady, Schuck isn’t overly surprised by the price increase. “This is a resort area, with resort prices. We’ve always said it’s ‘The Mountain Tax.’ ” Lakefront sales, which include Lake Pend Oreille and Priest Lake, are by far the hottest thing going at the moment: The number of sold listings increased from 10 during last year’s period to 49 during this period. The average sales price skyrocketed 275 percent to an average $548,518. Obviously, the days of waterfront bargains are over. “There are a few deals, but there are no steals,” said Schuck, citing the fact that oil-wealthy Canadians continue to lead the demand. Both Schuck and Haynes are optimistic about the real estate market in the wake of losing Coldwater Creek and its 300-plus jobs. “I don’t think it will be the cliff that everyone’s saying it will be,” said Schuck. “There will be a short-term hiccup for restaurants, car dealers and local businesses.
And it could put a damper on over-optimistic sellers in the mid-range market.” Ultimately, it’s difficult to know how Coldwater Creek’s absence will affect the area until further down the road, according to Haynes. “It will be a rearview shot for me.” So what’s their best advice for buyers and sellers in this fast-changing market? “Ignore the real estate websites such as Zillow.com,” Schuck said. “They’re scraping data using national formulas, and there’s no reality to the numbers.” Instead, he advises folks to take a Realtor’s advice, and be ready to pounce when the opportunity comes along. While the days of great deals are over, savvy shoppers can still navigate the waters – but once again, have all the ducks lined up in a row. “There are still some good buys, but you need to be ready,” said Haynes. Schuck concurs. “You can’t sit back and wait. Today’s the day!” –Beth Hawkins
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Residential Sales By Area
Lakefront (Pend Oreille & Priest) 2013
Volume - Sold Listings
Volume - Sold Listings
Average Sales Price
Average Sales Price
Average Days on Market
Average Days on Market
Volume - Sold Listings
Volume - Sold Listings
Average Sales Price
Average Sales Price
Average Days on Market
Average Days on Market
Volume - Sold Listings
Volume - Sold Listings
Average Sales Price
Average Sales Price
Average Days on Market
Average Days on Market
Selkirk Multiple Listing Service Real Estate Market Trends
Vacant Land Boundary County
Vacant Land Bonner County
Based on information from the Selkirk MLS© for the period of Oct. 1, 2012, to April 20, 2013, versus the time period for Oct. 1, 2013, to April 20, 2014. Real estate stats for Bonner and Boundary counties. Information deemed reliable but not guaranteed.
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R _ E
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NATIVES AND NEWCOMERS
Story and photos by Billie Jean Gerke This ever-popular department contrasts and compares the thoughts of two native residents and two relative newcomers. Both newcomers work in education, one a high school principal and the other just starting her career in elementary education. Both natives have rural roots steeped in agriculture in the Selle Valley, where they’ve spent their entire lives. We invite you to consider their perspectives on life in Sandpoint.
NATIVES Keith Clyde
A 1977 graduate of Sandpoint High School, Keith Clyde grew up on a dairy farm in the Selle Valley. A member of the trail crew, Clyde, 55, has worked at Schweitzer Mountain Resort for more than 30 years. He’s also a licensed building contractor who builds and remodels homes, and he dabbles in farming and operating heavy equipment. As he says, “You have to do a little bit of everything and diversify to make it in northern Idaho.” He and his wife, Monique Miller, were foster par-
ents for 15 years and raised three children of their own. The only time Clyde lived away from Sandpoint was when he attended the Wyoming Technical Institute in Laramie, Wyo., where he earned a certificate as a diesel technician in 1979. An avid motorcyclist, Clyde races dirt bikes and won the Desert 100 in Odessa, Wash., in 2011. Any secret tips for getting the most out of living here?
Get outside whenever you can. This is a nature paradise with four seasons, many sports and beauty, so get out and enjoy it. Share it with family and friends. I never take it for granted. If you could change something,
what would it be?
Well, I had a big thing, but they finally did it, and it was the bypass, so Sandpoint is what it should be now. No, this is it. There isn’t a lot I would want to change about Sandpoint.
Natives and Newcomers What could be done to improve the local economy?
There should be more recreation advertisement by the Sandpoint Chamber of Commerce to outside sources. What has gone unnoticed that Sandpoint should be recognized for?
There’s a lot of great artists in this town ... a lot of talent. It’s huge horse country. It’s horse paradise. The backcountry is really empty when you get out there. If I go motorcycle trail riding in the mountains, I don’t see anybody. How has Sandpoint changed since your childhood?
Bonner County had a lot of lumber mills, where (it) has no lumber mills now. Well, one (Riley Creek). The lumber industry here has really gone down. There were more dairy farms … and now we have one (Poelstras). There used to be a stockyard sale barn here that was really busy every weekend. Everybody smoked back then. You would walk in for a hamburger, and you couldn’t even see to the counter. Farms were bigger back then than now. We didn’t have a veggie farmers market back then. We were selling cows and pigs and horses. The population has grown quite a bit. The roads are way better. I remember spring when we couldn’t get up our road for two months. Any advice for people who want to move here?
R _ E
Be ready for five months of long winter. Enjoy the nature and then let your attitude reflect that. Don’t come here (and think) you’re going to change things. Most people who live here have low stress because of the atmosphere. People are pretty friendly. Get outside and get some exercise. SUMMER 2014
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NATIVES AND NEWCOMERS Sandpoint’s Complete Family Fitness Center
Besides everything having to do with horses, she loves to camp, hike, mountain bike and play the fiddle – even entertaining guests with weekly concerts.
25 Meter Pool Personal Training Hot Tub & Sauna Group Exercise Classes Racquetball Nursery Massage Therapy
Any secret tips for getting the most out of living here?
You need to be able to enjoy the outdoors, because if (not), you’re going to be saying there’s nothing to do here. There really isn’t a lot of indoor activities in this area, unless you’re fond of movies at the movie theater. There’s so much land available to us to enjoy. You need to be outdoorsy to live here.
Sandpoint West Athletic Club DAY PASSES
If you could change something, what would it be?
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Because there’s more to life than bad news
The River Journal A news magazine worth wading through Because
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Your monthly source for the news and events of the Clark Fork River Valley. P.O. Box 151, Clark Fork, ID 83811 • 208-255-6957 • email@example.com
As part of the Wood/Schoonover family, Danielle Otis, 25, is the sixth generation of women to live on Upper Gold Creek Road, where her parents, Roley and Janice, operate Western Pleasure Guest Ranch. Now she runs the ranch’s youth program and annual horse camps for seven weeks each summer. She and husband Landon Otis have two children, 4-year-old Emily and Gabriel, 2. After graduating from Sandpoint High School in 2006, she studied at Boise Bible College and North Idaho College, where she earned an associate’s degree in resort/recreational management.
First of all, Colburn-Culver Road used to be called Farm-to-Market Road. I would change that back because (it’s) more interesting and descriptive. Driving, especially through the Selle Valley, seeing all the pastures and hayfields that used to have cattle and horses, that now have homes, that’s really hard for me. It makes me sad seeing those places turned into houses rather than wide-open places. What could be done to improve the local economy?
My husband works at Quest Aircraft, and I think that if businesses like that, or Encoder, could be encouraged to grow here, that would be helpful. It’s really sad about Coldwater Creek. I think the chamber does a really good job of promoting the tourism side. What has gone unnoticed that Sandpoint should be recognized for?
I always seem to go back to my roots, and I love my roots. If we made sure to
Visit the Gateway to North Idaho! hiking • fishing • camping premier Kootenai and Moyie rivers waterfalls • Mirror Lake Golf Course Kootenai National Wildlife Refuge plus Idaho’s Friendliest Town!
www.RiverJournal.com Bonners Ferry, Idaho • www.BonnersFerryChamber.org 116
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NATIVES AND NEWCOMERS remember our agriculture and forestry history, especially the forestry, that’s what started the area, (then) promoting the agriculture and forestry part would be good for Sandpoint. How has Sandpoint changed since your childhood?
I remember the railroad used to go through Sandpoint, and it doesn’t anymore. Ponderay used to be this little blip, and now it’s like a huge town. You don’t even have to go into Sandpoint for the things you need. And the sprawl, the homes popping up, out in the country with more homes in the hayfields, that’s changed as well. Any advice for people who want to move here?
Try all five seasons, especially winter and mud. A lot of people when they decide they want to live here come when it’s gorgeous and a super-awesome place to live, but sometimes winter and break-up following winter can be a bit of a shock. I couldn’t imagine living anywhere else. Billboard.X7.pdf 1 5/2/14 1:50
NEWCOMERS Geoff Penrose
The new principal at Lake Pend Oreille High School, Geoff Penrose, 46, moved to Sandpoint from Corvallis, Ore., in July with his wife Lara, a nurse at Kootenai Health, and their 4-year-old son, Gus. They bought a home at Sunnyside, where they enjoy being close to Lake Pend Oreille and the outdoors. He had a long history of working in the cannery industry in Alaska before getting into education. A Michigan native, Penrose had visited Sandpoint for years to ski at Schweitzer Mountain Resort, and visit his wife when they were courting. Any secret tips for getting the most out of living here?
Get out constantly and take advantage of this amazing, natural beauty we have around us. It’s situated next to everything we like to do. It’s my first time ever living as a local near a ski hill, and I got 21 days last winter. Get a pass at Schweitzer and get a boat, too, because PM the lake and the mountain are big rea-
sons to move here. If you could change something, what would it be?
I wish there was a community swimming pool. We have a huge mass of water here, but we can’t swim in it year-round. An indoor swimming pool would be a huge boon to this community, and in some ways it’s a health and
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NATIVES AND NEWCOMERS safety issue: 100 percent of our students should know how to swim. I would also like to see a more comprehensive bike trail that’s not so much along the roads. Selfishly, I would want a really good Korean restaurant. What could be done to improve the local economy?
We need to do something to mitigate for the loss of Coldwater Creek. It’s reaching into my school and every corner of the community right now. If we could get some type of light manufacturing or mid-sized company with locally sourced resources ... What has gone unnoticed that Sandpoint should be recognized for?
We’re There. Perk up with informative articles on Sandpoint and the surrounding area. For home delivery call (208) 263-9534
I’ve done a lot of traveling this year on behalf of the school district. The one thing I consistently hear is, “Man, what a great school district. You are so lucky to work there.” Around the state, Lake Pend Oreille School District is recognized as one of the best. It’s not just the 5-star ratings for Clark Fork and Sandpoint High, but this is a community that supports its schools – the levies that are passed and the level of volunteerism. What surprised you most about living here?
I was a little surprised at how mild the winter was. The cold snaps felt good to me. I hadn’t felt that crisp cold since I left Alaska. I was pleasantly surprised at the variety and quality of cultural opportunities. The festival was fabulous, and the day I interviewed for the job, Leo Kottke was playing at the Panida. I took that as a sign that this was supposed to happen. Leo Kottke’s like the sound track of my youth. Having (him) say “This is a cool place where I want to play” … is awesome. Would you recommend living here to a friend? Why or why not?
I do. I would love to have all my friends here. The thing is finding a living wage here. It has a little bit of everything that people of similar mind would possibly want. It has a vibrant culture, strong volunteerism, and a strong community spirit that is pretty heterogeneous. There’s a pretty strong conservative streak and a pretty strong liberal streak, and they seem to get along pretty well.
A 26-year-old Oklahoma native, Audrey Withycombe moved here in August 2012 and married Coeur d’Alene native Richie Withycombe in August 2013. She earned a bachelor’s in history from the University of Oklahoma in 2010 and just received her teaching certificate from Lewis Clark State College. She studenttaught at Washington Elementary and will be teaching day camp for Sandpoint West Athletic Club this summer. Withycombe met her future husband at Camp Lutherhaven on Lake Coeur d’Alene in 2009; when she returned a year later for an internship, they started dating. She has become an avid skier and also enjoys gardening, hiking and being on the lake. Any secret tips for getting the most out of living here?
You have to get out every season. Find that fun thing in the fall, find something cool to do outside in winter. Every season has something. There’s not really anything unique about living in this beautiful area if you’re not using it. Get outside as much as possible, and be prepared for the elements. If you could change something, what would it be?
I wish that there was more shopping – a
5/6/14 5:47 PM
NATIVES AND NEWCOMERS little bit more variety, as far as clothes and shoes. That’s also part of the charm that you have the options of the little boutiques to go to. Maybe it doesn’t need to be changed after all. What could be done to improve the local economy?
I think that there should be more opportunities for tourism year-round – like boating tours or kayaking tours on the lake, or maybe for people to go on a backpacking tour with a company to explore the Selkirks or Cabinets.
FesTival aTsandpoinT augusT 7 - 17, 2014 The
What has gone unnoticed that Sandpoint should be recognized for?
Music under the stars, on the Lake,
There is so much potential here to get outside and to enjoy – there’s almost a whole wilderness area with the Scotchman Peaks and the Selkirks. We can easily access the backcountry and explore. It has great potential.
august 7-17, 2014
Featuring: The Head & The Heart, Huey Lewis & the News, Nickel Creek, Trombone Shorty, Galactic, Ray LaMontagne, Montgomery Gentry, family Concert, Spokane Symphony orchestra Grand finale with wine Tasting!
What surprised you most about living here?
Moving from Oklahoma, being this close to wildlife ... having a moose walking down the street is not something the rest of the U.S. has on a daily basis. Seeing a bunch of eagles standing on the ice on Round Lake, that’s not something you usually see. Just being that close to nature and wildlife still catches me off-guard.
For tickets and schedule visit us at:
Would you recommend living here to a friend? Why or why not?
I would, and part of our wedding was getting our friends and family to come here and see what we get to see every day. We had friends from the U.K. and Spain and Oklahoma. Everyone was in awe. We recommend it to everyone in the hopes that more people will come join us. I think that it’s a great community. It’s really easy to get involved in the town. There are a lot of different events. It’s like the “Gilmore Girls,” that TV show, where there’s a festival or big event going on every week, and everyone’s always involved. This is like that town. It has a really quaint spirit and characteristic. It’s a friendly, tightknit community. We’ve been able to find a church here that we fit into and made friends of all ages (at First Presbyterian). We’ve felt really welcomed here. SUMMER 2014
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Beautiful 3-bedroom, 2-bath waterfront condos on Lake Pend Oreille in Hope. Discount ski and golf tickets available. See ad, page 19. www.10kVacationRentals.com/sandpoint/
877-982-2954 / firstname.lastname@example.org
Best Western Edgewater Resort
Dover Bay Bungalows 208-263-3083
Waterfront bungalows at beautiful Dover Bay in Marina Village. Fully furnished with lake and mountain views. Fitness center, marina and trails. See ad, page 72. www.DoverBayBungalows.com Free breakfast with waffles, 24-hour hot tub, free wireless Internet. Family suites. Schweitzer ski packages. At the base of Schweitzer Mountain, two miles from Lake Pend Oreille.
Great deals on exclusive Schweitzer ski-in/out condos and waterfront vacation cabins. Book your perfect Idaho vacation online 24/7. See ad, page 75. www.NorthridgeVacationRentals.com
877-667-8409 or 208-290-6847
Pend Oreille Shores Resort
On beautiful Lakeshore Drive. Sleep’s Cabins consists of six log bungalows decorated with original furnishings and collectibles. See ad, page 55. www.SleepsCabins.com
208-255-2122 or 866-302-2122
Twin Cedars Vacation Rentals
Sunnyside lakefront and Selle Valley homes, camping cabins and RV pads, horse and dog friendly. Room to roam and ride, yet only 15 minutes from town. www.TwinCedarsSandpoint.com
Western Pleasure Guest Ranch
208-265-0257 or 800-831-8810
Private cabins sleep 2-8. Lodge rooms with private baths, rec room, horseback riding and meals available. See ad, page 35. www.WesternPleasureRanch.com
White Pine Lodge
Mountain accommodations, stay-and-play packages. Spectacular mountain and lake views. Outdoor heated pool and hot tubs. See ad, page 139. www.Schweitzer.com
208-265-0257 or 800-831-8810
75 luxury homes and condos in Sandpoint and on the lake. First-class properties at affordable rates. Boat rentals, tee times. See ad, page 5. www.SandpointVacationRentals.com
208-263-7570 or 866-263-7570
Indoor pool and hot tub. Close to downtown Sandpoint. 5th Avenue Restaurant and Mitzy’s Lounge on property. Kids stay and eat free. www.SandpointHotels.com
208-263-2111 or 866-519-7683
Sandpoint Vacation Rentals
Fully furnished condos and on-site athletic club on Lake Pend Oreille. Stay and play packages. See ad, page 64. www.POSResort.com
Sandpoint Quality Inn
Northern Quest Resort & Casino is the Inland Northwest’s only AAA-rated 4-Diamond casino resort. Complimentary Wi-Fi, and valet and overnight parking. See ad, page 74. www.NorthernQuest.com
Northridge Vacation Rentals
Accommodations for weddings, retreats and banquets. Lakeside with swimming and docks. Views of lake and mountains for an unforgettable Idaho vacation. www.LodgeAtSandpoint.com
Northern Quest Casino
Downtown location, high-speed Internet. Free breakfast, themed spa suites. Silverwood, ski and golf packages. Kids stay free. See ad, page 44. www.Hotels-West.com
208-263-9581 or 800-282-0660
Lodge at Sandpoint
The newest hotel in Greater Sandpoint. 100 percent smoke-free. In Ponderay at the base of Schweitzer Mountain next to Sweet Lou’s, close to Walmart. See ad, page 62. www.HIExpress.com
208-255-4500 / Fax 208-255-4502
La Quinta Inn
From rustic elegance or Manhattan chic, you’ll find a room that suits you along with a casino that boasts the area’s most machines, and the most winners. See ad, page 95. CdACasino.com
Holiday Inn Express
Downtown Sandpoint on the lake. Indoor pool, sauna, fitness room, hot tub. All rooms with lake view. Dine at Trinity at City Beach. Also 22-site RV park. www.SandpointHotels.com
208-263-3194 or 800-635-2534
Coeur d’Alene Casino
THE LODGE AT WESTERN PLEASURE GUEST RANCH
Pool on site
Bar or Lounge
Spa or Sauna
Archer Vacation Condos
No. of Units
New accommodations, stay-and-play packages. Spectacular mountain and lake views. Outdoor hot tubs, access to heated pool. See ad, page 139. www.Schweitzer.com
5/6/14 3:02 PM
With Beth Hawkins and photos by Katie Kosaya
Moon Taxi performs at The Hive on First Avenue. PHOTO COURTESY THE HIVE
Sandpoint’s nightlife scene alive and well
t’s 5:30 p.m. in Sandpoint … do you know where the nightlife is? Yes, it may often start and end earlier than in big cities, but it’s just as fun for all you night owls. Ask any local about where to go for the nightlife vibe, and they’ll likely direct you to Eichardt’s Pub, 212 Cedar St. The pub recently celebrated its 20th anniversary, and has become the destination hot-spot for live music, great food, and a plethora of beer choices. Eichardt’s hosts live music most weekends, plus don’t miss the Monday Blues Jam hosted by Truck Mills – going on for two decades now! Eichardt’s has 14 beers on tap and one on cask, featuring regional and Northwest beers. When the munchies hit, manager Doug Clark recommends several choices: “Garlic fries are always a hit, and the smoked salmon artichoke dip is a consistent pick, served on a toasted baguette. It’s rich and delicious.” Food is served until 10 p.m. Just across the street, Pend d’Oreille Winery moves into its new
digs at 301 Cedar St. in early June. The winery has transformed the former Belwood’s Furniture building into a lofty, urban space that will accommodate a wine bar, gift shop and restaurant (scheduled to open in July). “It will be more lounge-y, more comfortable, with a modern flair,” said assistant manager Jennifer Hackenbruch. “We’ll still have live music on Fridays, and a few Saturdays.” An outdoor courtyard on Third Avenue serves as an inviting venue during nice weather. Speaking of warmer temps, boaters out on the lake during those magical, summer evenings will find more parking spaces at the newly expanded docks at Forty-One South and Shoga, located next to each other in Sagle on Lakeshore Drive. Both restaurants serve food until 10 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays, and owner Cassandra Cayson said the relaxed atmosphere of the Forty-One South lounge is perfect for those looking for something other than a three-course meal: “We have some great, hearty appetizers such as the smoked pork empanadas and lobSUMMER 2014
ster crepes, plus lighter fare such as wings, and hummus and pitas.” Kicking up the nightlife scene in a big way is The Hive, 207 N. First Ave. Renovations are under way to make this live music venue better than ever. Owner Jeff Grady is expanding the concert area by 30 percent, building a permanent stage, adding a state-of-theart sound system, redoing the façade and other design elements, plus adding a custom bar. Grady aims to make The Hive a destination venue. “We’re looking at people who will travel here to see music,” he said. “What a wonderful place to come and spend a day on the lake, then go see a concert.” Renovations will be complete this summer, in time for the second annual Aftival concert series that follows the Friday and Saturday night concerts at the Festival at Sandpoint. Of course, what would nightlife in Sandpoint be without the venerable 219 Lounge, 219 First Ave. in downtown Sandpoint (see story, page 123). The renovated bar opens at 10 a.m. daily, staying open until 2 a.m. the followSANDPOINT MAGAZINE
5/6/14 2:59 PM
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ing morning. Owner Mel Dick said the revered local institution has two sets of customers – the old-timers during the daytime and the younger crowd that comes in later. “Everyone wants to come in and celebrate their 21st birthday at the 219,” Dick said. For a more serene setting, Di Luna’s Café, 207 Cedar St., holds dinner concerts featuring a variety of musicians. “We’ve been doing them for 10 years now,” said owner Karen Forsythe, who usually schedules the dinner concerts twice a month. Concertgoers enjoy their dinner before the show, and drinks and desserts are the only thing served during the concert. “We set it up as a listening room,” she said. A new event, Palate Uncorked, in June and July, invites guests to spend time with artist Randy Wilhelm and complete a painting in an evening; the $35 fee includes the art and a glass of wine. Beer aficionados have two great options for enjoying some hometowncrafted brew. MickDuff’s Brewing Company, 312 N. First Ave., opens a new tasting room this summer at their
new brewery location – just down the street at 220 Cedar St. Co-owner Duffy Mahoney said the tasting room will not serve food (unlike their First Avenue location), allowing patrons to enjoy their beer in a relaxed atmosphere. They’re also eyeing the possibility of live music and outdoor events in the grassy area. Just outside of Sandpoint’s city limits in Ponderay, Laughing Dog Brewing, 1109 Fontaine Dr., keeps their distinct beers flowing in the tap room until 7 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday. It’s no surprise that patrons’ canine friends can tag along! Also outside of Sandpoint, Sweet Lou’s two locations – on Highway 95 in Ponderay and Highway 200 in Hope – make ideal nightlife destinations. Owner Chad Foust said the new drink menu’s addition of moonshine has risen in popularity. “People want to try it,” Foust said. “It’s really big on television right now.” Food is served until 10 p.m., a plus for the post-8 p.m crowd: “We want to be that option for people who want to eat later at night.”
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Sweet Lou says, “come hungry, stay late, eat well.” 122
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219’s face-lift What’s old is new again
olks from all walks of life – young and old, blue collar and white collar, rich and poor – have made the 219 Lounge in downtown Sandpoint their gathering place for more than 80 years. Keeping the business’s storied past – and the customers who loved it “just the way it was” – in mind, owner Mel Dick has paid careful attention to the smallest of details during an extensive renovation that has artfully bridged the old with the new. After all, the 219 is known as Idaho’s “five-star dive bar,” and Dick didn’t want to change its unique personality. The exterior’s face-lift has brought back the bar’s former art deco appearance from the 1930s. And in peeling back layers and layers of paint from the walls, Dick and his crew discovered scenic murals hand-painted decades ago. Restoration efforts are under way to brighten them up, giving a new generation the chance to enjoy longhidden artwork. “We’re trying to save some of the history of the place,” Dick said. Bigger changes include opening up the “pool room” to the rest of the bar and tearing down walls to showcase exposed brick, all in the hopes of the space becoming a venue for live music and even the occasional “improv night.” Another nod to modern touches can be found in the newly renovated bathrooms, which Dick describes as “bulletproof.” The urinals are made out of beer kegs, and soap dispensers out of beer growlers. Out back, behind the 219, a new
The new art deco facade returns the 219 to its former glory
patio has been poured – allowing bar patrons to sit outside, enjoy the new painted murals of Sandpoint scenes by local artists Maria Larson and Nan Cooper, and access to Second Avenue via a new metal gate entrance. Change isn’t always easy, but longtime bar patrons Leon and Bev Anderson are happy with the improvements – and the nod to the bar’s nostalgia. “I think it’s great,” Leon said. “It’s getting back to what it used to be.” SUMMER 2014
5/6/14 6:00 PM
New owners, same appeal
ver the years, Sandpoint restaurateur Justin Dick enjoyed taking his family out to eat at Jalapeño’s on a regular basis. “I love the atmosphere,” he said, in describing the downtown restaurant’s warm, inviting appeal. “It’s what a Mexican restaurant should look like, right down to the fish tank.” So when Jalapeño’s founder Chet French approached Dick in late 2013 about his interest in taking over the reins of the restaurant, it was a fairly easy sell for the owner of Trinity at City Beach. “I’d been looking for another opportunity besides Trinity for the past year,” Dick said. “When this came up, it fit.” Dick purchased the restaurant along with co-owner Dave Vermeer, former manager of the Coldwater Creek Wine Bar, from Chet and Shari French at the beginning of 2014 – and they are still are amazed at how easy the transition process has been. “Chet and Shari were fantastic operators, and it’s been wonderful to work with them,” Dick said. “We walked into a really good situation.”
New owners familiar faces at Jalapeño’s, Justin Dick, left, and Dave Vermeer
5/6/14 2:59 PM
Dick and Vermeer said their goal was to retain all of Jalapeño’s employees, who are treated like family at the establishment. “It’s really them accepting us,” Dick said. “We like it like that – we were able to acclimate easily.” While the new owners have no plans to change the restaurant’s popular menu, they are mulling a few new menu ideas with the restaurant’s executive chef and have implemented some behind-thescenes operational improvements. Restaurant cofounder Shari French said she and Chet are pleased with the transition. “We were especially happy to hand the reins over to two ‘local boys’ who wanted to continue the foundation we started and enhance it with their own creative ideas,” she said. Reflecting back on their 20 years of running the restaurant, French said she enjoyed being a part of the local community and is proud of the fact that
Fish Tacos, top, and Shrimp Fajitas at Jalapeño’s
they were able to employ many young people in the Sandpoint area. “Jalapeño’s will always be in our hearts.”
NEWLY EXPANDED STORE & DINING AREA Breads Scones Pastries Cookies Pies Cinnamon Rolls Coffee Teas Canned Goods Spices Beans Rice Pasta Flour Nuts Dried Fruit Christian Books Housewares
Hours: M-F 8:30-5:30 Join us on
1326 Baldy Mt. Rd., Sandpoint, ID 83864 . www.MillersCountryStoreSandpoint.com SUMMER 2014
5/6/14 6:01 PM
Restaurateur Q&A with Dave Libbey and Gary Peitz
arly in their careers, both Dave Libbey, 66, owner of Connie’s Café, and Gary Peitz, 53, owner of DISH Café at Dover Bay, were influenced by their experiences in the restaurant industry. For Libbey, who grew up in Oregon and graduated with a business degree (“I was going to be a CPA”), it was a stint writing restaurant training manuals that sparked his interest in the industry. Libbey purchased restaurants in Portland and Milwaukee, Ore. – following a business model of buying bankrupt restaurants and bringing them back to life. After moving to Sandpoint in 2008, he did the same with the Edgewater (now Trinity) and Connie’s. Peitz has been in the restaurant industry for 25 years, graduating from Arizona State University and then running restaurants in Phoenix and San Francisco. “The bulk of my life is in restaurants,” he said. In 2002, Peitz moved to Sandpoint and purchased a bed and breakfast before opening DISH five years ago. –B.H.
PHOTOS BY CLINT NICHOLSON AND BETH HAWKINS
How many hours per week do you work, on average?
About 40. It reflects a Critical Path Method (CPM) relating to time, cost and delegating to staff.
About 50; the key word is “average” because sometimes it’s 30, sometimes it’s 80.
What’s the bestselling dish at your restaurant?
For breakfast, it’s our thick-cut bacon and eggs; lunch is still the burgers; and dinner is the hand-breaded fish and chips.
We’re definitely known for our Buffalo Meatloaf, made with chipotle barbecue sauce, and then the Mahi Mahi Tacos – they’re incredibly awesome.
What’s your favorite dish?
The Eggs Florentine, made with eggs, bacon, spinach, cream cheese, all covered in a Hollandaise sauce and served with hash browns. It’s delicious.
The Sweet Chili Grilled Prawns – they’re large, Mexican white prawns and we grill them and top them with a sweet chili and wasabi crème fraîche.
Biggest challenge of running a restaurant?
It’s a resort town, so we have the seasonal roller coaster ride. As a coffee shop, we’re lucky to have year-round appeal. We’re famous in Canada - they take selfies in front of the old sign!
For me, it’s personnel. Being seasonal (May through September), we basically open a new restaurant every spring. This is our best year yet with returning staff – we just keep building a more solid group, but it still brings on the biggest challenge.
What’s your advice to someone wanting to start a restaurant in Sandpoint?
The water’s fine – come on in! It’s about location and knowing what your customer demands. Communicate with others downtown, the Chamber and associate with other restaurants.
Find a niche in the market that’s not being served from a culinary standpoint; downtown has become saturated.
We moved here for the lifestyle – boating, skiing, the trails, digging holes with the Kubota and filling them up!
I ski a lot, 50 to 80 days a year. And I raise two children, who take up the bulk of my life. In reality, those ski days are designed around getting time in with my kids. They’re the ones dragging me up there.
What would you do if not running a restaurant?
I went to flight school and got a license to become a commercial pilot. But I’m an entrepreneur, and being independent is important to me.
I would probably go into the teaching profession, even though I’ve never taught, at the college level, maybe in business administration.
5/6/14 2:59 PM
Patience pays off
ust like the fine wine it produces, Pend d’Oreille Winery has been patiently biding its time – awaiting a much-anticipated move into the new Belwood301 building just across the street from its former location. At long last, let the sipping begin in this fabulous new space! Sandpoint’s local winery opens its new Tasting Room in June, and owner Steve Meyer is excited to welcome customers to the beautiful new space. “We love the urban feel,” Meyer said. The building, built in 1911, has been completely renovated by Steve and his wife, Julie, during a process that took nearly three years. And now with the building poised and ready for the next century, customers will enjoy the lofty interior’s expansive openness with its exposed ducts, original brick walls, and trendy, modern vibe. Adjacent to the Tasting Room, a new restaurant called The Bistro Rouge at Belwoods, opens later this summer. It will be open to families of all ages – “We want to make it fun for everyone,” said Julie – serving dinner along with “approachable” food that goes well with wine. Summertime customers will also enjoy sipping wine and enjoying dinner in the building’s new covered courtyard just to the south of The
Bistro Rouge at Belwoods. The outdoor space includes a “living wall” of plants and overlooks the Jeff Jones Towne Square with its laidback atmosphere. Rounding out the first-floor attractions is Downtown Yoga’s new studio space, along with a juice bar that serves wraps and other healthy offerings. The Meyers purchased the entire building in 2011, and The Belwood301 building, new home to Pend d’Oreille Winery and The the renovations have Bistro Rouge at Belwoods included a complete overhaul of the second d’Oreille Winery’s expanded operafloor for leasable office space. Steve tions and restaurant also bode well for Meyer said the modern, vibrant feel the community. Steve Meyer is hiring of the project has attracted several, two new employees in the Tasting new out-of-town businesses – moves Room, and 15 to 20 new employees for which, in turn, bring additional jobs to The Bistro Rouge at Belwoods. “We’re Sandpoint. anxious to get everything started,” With its ideal location in the heart Julie Meyer said, standing in the new of downtown, Steve Meyer said it’s space. “I like how all the elements an added bonus for office employees came together in the end.” to open up the window and “hear the Stop by and enjoy the Pend noise of downtown, kids playing at the d’Oreille Winery’s new space at 301 fountain. It’s a real kick.” Cedar St., beginning June 1. The economic impact of the Pend
Winery moving to new digs
41 Lakeshore Drive, Sagle, Idaho 83860
Di Lun a ’s CAFE
American Bistro Dining & Catering For delivery call
Dinner 7 nights a week
www.DiLunas.com 207 Cedar Street
Lunch Monday - Friday
208 265 2001
5/6/14 2:59 PM
The Local Dish
News and events foodies need to know
HOURS: 4 P.M. - 9 P.M. DAILY
~ Eichardt’s Serves up the Best of Northwest Microbrews, Food & Local Live Music ~ Full Lunch & Dinner Menu 16 Micros on Tap • Oak Cask Red Wines Upstairs Game Room Open Daily From 11:30 am 212 Cedar St. • Sandpoint • 263-4005
AUTHENTIC MEXICAN CUISINE • Prepared Daily • Full Bar • Outside Seating 700 Kootenai Cutoff Rd., Ponderay
Discover the unexpected at Cafe Bodega inside Foster’s Crossing Antiques, 504 Oak St. Once an old railroad freight house, patrons can go antique shopping while waiting for lunch. The café’s menu has an international flair, exemplified by the menu’s tasty new Bánh mì - a Vietnamese sandwich with a touch of French pizazz. Filled with barbecue chicken, pickled daikon radishes, carrots and cilantro, owner Dave Luers said, “You have a little bit of sweet, a little bit of vinegar flavor, along with savory and a fresh crunch; it just all comes together in your mouth.” Besides sandwiches and soups, the cafe serves steamy mugs of lattes, espressos, and a variety of loose-leaf teas. For a place that ticks all the boxes on showcasing Sandpoint’s splen-
Cafe Bodega serves up a sweet and savory Bánh mì sandwich. PHOTO BY BETH HAWKINS
did charm, visit the Cedar Street Bistro on the Cedar Street Bridge in downtown Sandpoint. The eatery’s prime location over Sand Creek is a great place to take visitors and try out the new stone-baked artisan pizzas. Each 9” build-your-own pizza includes cheese, choice of toppings, and a choice of three sauces including a savory basil-pesto. While the pizzas are baking, check out a new assortment of huckleberry items and T-shirts just across from the bistro. Also on the Cedar Street Bridge, barbecue fans are lining up for The Station BBQ’s generously sized portions of pulled pork and tri-tip sand-
Sandpoint’s Landmark Restaurant
Serving American Regional Cuisine For over 19 Years! RIDE • WALK • BOAT • DRIVE 102 N. First Ave, Downtown Sandpoint Overlooking Sandpoint's Marina
SPUDSONLINE.COM x265-4311 128
Hoagies, Hamburgers, Fries Shakes, Fresh Salads & more JoesPhilly.com 102 Church St. Sandpoint 263-1444
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Eats “A Downtown Favorite”
The Station BBQ, on the Cedar Street Bridge, cooks up a tasty pulled pork sandwich
year in a row, and has added real fruit smoothies to the menu for a healthier option. Elseroad said Sandpoint’s favorite ice cream flavors are huckleberry, moose tracks and caramel caribou, and plans to bolster her sweet offerings with pies and cheesecakes. There’s seating inside and out, and Delightful Choices is open ‘til 10 p.m. – a perfect place to
Located on the Historic Cedar St. Bridge in Sandpoint, Idaho
A full line of huckleberry products on the Cedar St. Bridge in Sandpoint, Idaho
Deli•Salad Bar•Bakery Fresh Meat•Seafood Organic Produce Grocery•Bulk•Dairy Espresso•Juice Bar Wine•Beer SUMMER 2014
wiches, along with ribs and chicken. Although the restaurant just opened in March, folks around the community are already giving it rave reviews. Co-owners Scott Ross and Rob Regalia are familiar faces in the area – they also dish up their authentic barbecue at the Bonner County Fair and area farmers’ markets. They report that the biggest seller, thus far, is the Idaho Nachos – made with their own beer-battered “sidewinders” (a cross between a thickcut potato chip and a curly fry), piled with pulled pork, melted cheese and a side of ranch dressing. Now that it’s summer, who’s screaming for ice cream? Miller’s Country Store, 1326 Baldy Mountain Rd., is serving up delicious, homemade ice cream that’s unlike most others. Just like their fresh-baked goods, owner Rod Miller said the store’s ice cream is made with pure ingredients such as cream and milk – without any mixes. Flavors rotate on a weekly basis, and include peanut butter, huckleberry, mocha fudge, vanilla, chocolate, and more, all served up in a cone or waffle bowl. How do you describe such a simple, delicious treat? “It’s just real,” said Miller. Downtown’s destination for ice cream is Delightful Choices, 216 N. First Ave. Owner Karen Elseroad is dishing up frozen treats for the second
703 W Lake Street at Boyer St. www.WinterRidgeFoods.com SANDPOINT MAGAZINE
5/6/14 2:59 PM
The Local Dish
News and events foodies need to know
Espresso • Beer/Wine • WiFi
Open Daily at 6 A.M. 208 N. 4th Avenue • Sandpoint, ID
International Wine Selection Artisan Cheeses & Breads Fresh Pasta Dinners To Go Gourmet Deli
www.pendoreillepasta.com 476534 Hwy 95 Sandpoint • 208.263.1352
fresh baked breads • cheeses • olives
wine • beer • gift baskets • catering
sausages • ravioli • gourmet sandwiches
Complete carry-out fresh pasta dinners
The Pie Hut
502 Church Street • Sandpoint, ID • 208-265-2208
Great Soups v Sandwiches v Pies Rice crusts & soy cheese now available
along with a homemade bean dip. For spend a warm summer eve! super-sized portion lovers there are sevPicking up steam (literally!), Evans eral items on the menu available as Big Brothers Coffee, 524 Church St., Boy Platters, reserved for “when people underwent a rebranding effort and now are super hungry,” Luis Ivarra said. sports a new logo, new signage and a The restaurant sells lots of margarirenovated café that lends itself to an tas in all sorts of flavors: lime, peach, urban-rustic vibe with barnwood sidmango, huckleberry, made all the more ing and hand-built tables. More seatappealing when the ing accommodates patio seating opens groups looking for up for summertime. a great place to sit Fiesta Bonita is and chat. “We’ve open until 9 p.m. also expanded Sunday through our food offerings, Thursday, and 9:30 including sandp.m. Friday and wiches for lunch,” Saturday. said co-owner Rick Frozen conEvans. Coffee lovers coctions are also will find the same in high demand great artisan roasted at Monarch coffee; plus try out Ice cream galore at Delightful Choices Mountain Coffee, the café’s popular 208 N. Fourth St., traditional Italian where owner Sherrie Wilson said they version of a macchiato. Ciao! can blend just about anything on the Locals are abuzz over the delicious drink menu into a cold treat. Or try the Mexican food and drinks served at healthful smoothies made with frozen Fiesta Bonita, 700 Kootenai Cut-Off fruit and fruit juice. Monarch now has Rd. in Ponderay. Owners Rosalia Ivarra its own in-house baker, and Wilson and his son, Luis, who took over the said customers are enjoying the homerestaurant just over a year ago, are made scones in flavors such as cherrycreating a name for themselves by chocolate chip and oat with a crumbled preparing tasty, hearty-sized portions topping (“Basically it’s whatever mood of favorites such as the Carne Asada the baker is in,” Wilson said). There Platter and Fajitas Monterey (baconare gluten-free options for several of wrapped shrimp that’s served fajitastyle on a skillet). Customers begin their the baked goods, as well, plus breakfast burritos with or without sausage. meal with chips and two types of salsa, Delicious, homemade soups are served traditional and a cabbage pico de gallo,
INSIDE PANHANDLE STATE BANK
“Out of this W 263-9514 orld” Chicken salad sandwich
with avocado green salad
• Delivery • Sandwiches • Calzones • Specialty Salads • Homemade Dough • Beer/Wine • Take & Bakes
215 S. 2nd Ave.
Cedar St. Bridge • 265-4BBQ SUMMER 2014
5/6/14 2:59 PM
during the lunch hours. Look for more late-afternoon and evening events at Monarch, including an Open Mic Night on the first Thursday of every month. Moms will be patting themselves on the back with a stop at Joe’s Philly Cheesesteaks, 102 Church St. Not only does the popular downtown eatery serve up delicious sandwiches-to-go and more, co-owner Pam Lueck said she makes $1 ice cream sandwiches in the summer – perfect for families who are toting children to and from Sandpoint’s City Beach. “They’re a nice little snack for the kids, not too big, but a sweet treat,” she said of the frozen chocolate chip cookies that are filled with ice cream flavors such as vanilla and huckleberry. Another fun addition at Joe’s is the Mighty Bites, which is a mini-hamburger slider, mini-BLT slider, or grilled cheese at a portion control-friendly 4” in diameter. “They’re perfect in the mid-afternoon when you’re craving a little something,” Lueck said. Full-sized burgers remain a big seller, made with Wood’s Meats, and Joe’s also creates a tasty sweet-and-spicy pulled pork
The atmosphere at Spuds Waterfront Grill is inviting, and so are the sandwiches
sandwich. Delicious, savory sandwiches are a big draw at Spuds Waterfront Grill, 102 N. First Ave. Customers are especially fond of the Capistrano sandwich – served on a po’boy roll, it’s made with oven-roasted turkey, slices of avocado, lettuce, tomato and a delicious cilantro mayonnaise. The popular eatery, known for its outstanding views of the boat docks and Sand Creek, has outdoor seating and plans to stay open for dinner through the summer months. New salad options are on their way, just in time for summer, so stop by this favorite restaurant and check it out. On a final note: locals will sorely miss the Coldwater Creek Wine Bar on First Avenue, if it does indeed go the way of the retail stores. The Sandpoint retailer shuts down stores June 11, and all indications are that the wine bar will follow suit. It is a beautiful establishment that has served our community well.
Serving Dinner 7 nights a week Brunch Saturday & Sunday Reservations Recommended
208.265.2000 41 Lakeshore Drive Sagle www.41SouthSandpoint.com SUMMER 2014
Spectacular views Featuring fresh seafood, aged beef and local, fresh ingredients
Full bar & outstanding wine list April through October for lunch, dinner and Sunday brunch Accessed easily by boat or car at Hope Marine Services Hwy 200 E. Hope, Idaho 208.264.5311 hopefloatingrestaurant.com SANDPOINT MAGAZINE
5/8/14 4:28 PM
Downtown Sandpoint DINING Map To Hope Clark Fork i
Kootenai Cut-off Rd
Elks Golf Course
Baldy Mountain Rd.
Pend dʼOreille Bay Trail
Fir Healing Garden
Bonner General Hospital
To Dovere Priest River SANDPOINT MAGAZINE
17Bridge g pPanida Theater
S. Second Ave.
f h \
Pine St. S. Fourth Ave.
Third Ave. PARKING
LAKE PEND OREILLE
Sand Creek Byway
Schweitzer Cut-off Rd
To Bonners Ferry Canada
Map not to scale!
1 Cedar St. Bistro 2 Evans Brothers Coffee 3 Monarch Mountain Coffee 4 Joe’s Philly Cheesesteaks 5 Miller’s Country Store & Deli 6 Café Bodega 7 Delightful Choices 8 Mojo Coyote 9 Pend Oreille Pasta & Wine 0 Tango Cafe - Winter Ridge Natural Foods = Chimney Rock Grill q Connie’s Café w Di Luna’s Café e DISH Café at Dover Bay r Floating Restaurant (The) t Forty-One South y Pie Hut u Sweet Lou’s i Trinity at City Beach o Eichardt’s Pub & Grill p MickDuff’s Brewing Co. [ Bangkok on Second ] Fiesta Bonita \ Ivano’s Ristoranté & Caffè a Jalapeño’s Restaurant s Second Avenue Pizza d Shoga at Forty-One South fSpuds Waterfront Grill gThe Station BBQ h La Rosa j Laughing Dog Brewing k Pend d’Oreille Winery l 219 Lounge
AMENITIES KEY Waterfront Dining Outdoor Dining Full Bar Serves Breakfast Open Late Night
td To Sagle
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DINING GUIDE Restaurant index by type of cuisine Locate by number on dining map
BAKERIES, COFFEE & DESSERTS
1 Cedar St. Bistro
6 Café Bodega
2 Evans Brothers Coffee
7 Delightful Choices
First and Cedar inside the Cedar Street Bridge. European-style café in the heart of downtown Sandpoint. Exceptional coffee and tea drinks, premium gelato, delectable pastries, fine chocolates, and tasty panini. 265-4396.
Fifth and Cedar inside Foster’s Crossing. Revitalize yourself at Café Bodega, featuring an assortment of international sandwiches, homemade soups, all-organic espresso bar, whole leaf tea and Italian artisan gelato. Café available for catered evening events. 263-5911
524 Church St. Artisan coffee roaster in the center of the Granary Arts District. Connected to the roastery, Studio 524 Coffee Lounge serves coffees dripped to order on the brew bar, plus pastries and burritos. 265-5553.
216 N. First Ave. A great dessert shop in the heart of downtown Sandpoint featuring frozen yogurt, 16 flavors of hard ice cream, plus espresso drinks and all-fruit smoothies. 290-9306
DELICATESSEN & MARKET
8 Mojo Coyote at Schweitzer 10000 Schweitzer Mountain Rd. Enjoy a fresh Evans Brothers espresso and treat your sweet tooth to a warm scone. Fresh-baked pastries, breakfast burritos and lunch specials. Fine selection of beer and wine. 263-9555.
3 Monarch Mountain Coffee 208 N. Fourth Ave. Open at 6 a.m. daily and roasting top-grade beans. Treat yourself to a classic or custom delight from the Espresso Bar, a cup of premium brewed coffee or tea, craft beer or wine. Baked goods, breakfast burritos, homemade soup and appetizer plates to share. 265-9382.
9 Pend Oreille Pasta & Wine 476534 Highway 95, Ponderay (one block south of Walmart). Fresh homemade pastas and sauces made on-site, including salad and artisan bread as part of a complete, take-home dinner package. Fine wines, artisan cheeses and gourmet groceries. 263-1352.
4 Joe’s Philly Cheesesteaks 102 Church St. Authentic Philly cheesesteaks served with choice of cheese; also serving burgers, hot dogs, fries, BLTs, vegetarian options, smoothies, shakes and fresh-made salads. Open Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. 263-1444.
0 Tango Cafe
414 Church St. In the Panhandle State Bank atrium, Tango is a favorite among locals for breakfast and lunch Monday through Friday. Signature omelettes and lunch specials, freshbaked goods, and a barista bar. Takeout dinner menu. 263-9514.
5 Miller’s Country Store & Deli
1326 Baldy Mountain Rd. Newly expanded store and dining area. Wholesome goodness with a selection of fine deli meats and cheeses, bulk food items, pie fillings, and delicious freshbaked pies and breads – plus soup and sandwiches to go or eat in. 263-9446.
Open Late Night
5/6/14 2:59 PM
t Forty-One South
- Winter Ridge
Open Late Night
41 Lakeshore Dr., Sagle. South end of the Long Bridge. Waterfront dining in an elegant lodge setting; exquisite service paired with innovative cuisine make for one of North Idaho’s premier dining experiences. Open 7 nights a week, weekend brunch. 265-2000.
703 Lake St. Natural foods grocery store and a great place to pick up a quick meal at the Grab and Go Bar featuring dishes for breakfast, lunch and dinner until 6 p.m. Open daily 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. 265-8135.
ECLECTIC / FINE DINING
y Pie Hut
502 Church St. A gourmet café where the locals like to eat. Daily lunch specials include homemade soups, panini, pot pies, beef pasties, quiches and salads, plus fruit and cream pies. Open Tuesday through Saturday. 265-2208.
= Chimney Rock at Schweitzer
10000 Schweitzer Mountain Rd. Fireplaces, comfortable seating in the bar and a diverse selection of cuisine. Extensive menu includes high-quality steaks, hearty pasta, scrumptious salads and exquisite seafood. Open daily. 2553071.
u Sweet Lou’s
q Connie’s Café
Two locations! In Hope: 46624 Highway 200, overlooking Lake Pend Oreille in the Holiday Shores Marina. 264-5999. In Ponderay: 477272 U.S. Highway 95. 2631381. Open every day, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Something for everyone on the menu!
323 Cedar St. Historic hospitality! Landmark Sandpoint restaurant is known as “a coffee shop with dinner house quality.” Serving made-fromscratch breakfast, lunch and dinner dishes of the highest quality. 255-2227.
i Trinity at City Beach
58 Bridge St. Enjoy breakfast, lunch and dinner on the shore of Lake Pend Oreille. Waterfront dining with an outstanding view and menu featuring seafood, steaks, salads and appetizers; great selection of wines, beers and cocktails. Open daily from 7:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. 255-7558.
w Di Luna’s Café
207 Cedar St. American bistro café offering hand-cut steaks, homemade soups and vegetarian cuisine. Farm to Table Dinners monthly and dinner concerts. Open Tuesday through Sunday for breakfast and lunch. 263-0846.
e DISH at Dover Bay
At Dover Bay Resort. Casual fine dining on the water. DISH at Dover Bay is open for the season, serving lunch and dinner seven days a week from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. American grill menu with Pacific Rim influences. Happy hour daily. 2656467.
o Eichardt’s Pub & Grill
r Floating Restaurant (The)
p MickDuff’s Brewing Co.
Highway 200, East Hope at Hope Marine Services. The lake’s only floating restaurant and lounge. Regional fare, fresh seafood, local products. Handmade breads, desserts, soups and sauces. Sit outside during summer and enjoy the views. Lunch, dinner and Sunday brunch. 264-5311. 134
212 Cedar St. Relaxing pub and grill mixes casual dining with seriously good food. More than a dozen beers on tap, good wines and live music. Upstairs game room with fireplace. Locally supported since 1994. Open daily at 11:30 a.m. 263-4005.
312 N. First Ave. Handcrafted ales in a family-friendly downtown atmosphere, brewing top-of-the-line beers and root beer. Menu includes traditional and updated pub fare – toasted sandwiches, hearty soups and gourmet hamburgers. 255-4351.
5/6/14 3:00 PM
Open Late Night
fSpuds Waterfront Grill
102 N. First Ave. Located on beautiful Sand Creek overlooking the marina, Spud’s Waterfront Grill offers the freshest of lunch and dinner entrees specializing in American regional recipes. Spud’s Waterfront Grill has been a landmark restaurant in Sandpoint since 1995. www. SpudsOnline.com. 265-4311
[ Bangkok On Second
202 N. Second Ave. Authentic Thai food, including a wide variety of vegetarian and gluten-free selections; fine selection of wine and beer, Thai tea, and coffee. Lunch Monday- Friday from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.; dinner Monday through Saturday from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. 265-4149.
gThe Station BBQ
First and Cedar in the center of the Cedar Street Bridge. In downtown Sandpoint, enjoy authentic wood-smoked BBQ including tri-tip, brisket, pulled pork, ribs, salads, poutine, plus ice cream milkshakes, beer and wine. Delivery and curb-side pickup available; lunch and dinner. 2654227.
] Fiesta Bonita
700 Kootenai Cut-Off Rd., Ponderay. Serving authentic Mexican food and the best margaritas in town. Eat in or enjoy our outdoor seating. In a hurry? Takeout available anytime. Open 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. for lunch and dinner. 263-6174
WINE BARS & LOUNGES
h La Rosa Club
\ Ivano’s Ristoranté & Caffè
102 S. First Ave. Italian dining accompanied by classic wines. Pasta, fresh seafood and steaks, veal, chicken, and vegetarian entrees. Gluten-free menu. Dinner served seven nights a week starting at 4:30 p.m. 263-0211.
a Jalapeño’s Restaurant
314 N. Second Ave. Authentic Mexican food in a fun and friendly environment serving traditional and unusual southof-the-border specialties, plus even a few gringo dishes! Full cantina bar with traditional frosty margaritas. Banquet room and gluten-free menu. 263-2995.
s Second Avenue Pizza
215 S. Second Ave. Savor the piledhigh specialty pizzas, loaded with fresh ingredients on homemade dough, or calzones, specialty salads and sandwiches. Beer and wine, take-andbake pizzas available. Free delivery; open daily. 263-9321.
d Shoga @ Forty-One South 41 Lakeshore Dr., Sagle. Premier sushi restaurant adjacent to Forty-One South. Sushi bar and magnificent sunset views overlooking Lake Pend Oreille. Open for dinner seven nights a week, and lunch Monday through Friday. 265-2001.
105 S. First Ave. Casual gathering place featuring craft cocktails and martinis along with an innovative food menu with plates and bites. Fresh, seasonal, local ingredients. Open Tuesday through Saturday, 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. 255-2100.
j Laughing Dog Brewing
1109 Fontaine Dr., Ponderay. Take a tour and taste handcrafted ales, IPAs, stouts, and the hoppiest beer anywhere. Open Monday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Sunday during ski season, noon to 5 p.m. Come to Firkin Friday, first Friday of every month, for a special batch of beer. 263-9222.
k Pend d’Oreille Winery
301 Cedar St. Quality and elegance in vinting at Idaho’s 2003 Winery of the Year. Local, award-winning wines. Tasting room and Bistro Rouge menu daily. Home and garden items. Frequent special events and live music Fridays. 265-8545.
l 219 Lounge
219 N. First Ave. A “locals” favorite proudly serving Sandpoint for more than 75 years, offering beer, wine and cocktails. Enjoy a “219er” by local brewery Laughing Dog. Open seven days a week, 365 days a year from 10 a.m. to 2 a.m. 263-9934.
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A Glass Act 114 Action Water Sports 56 Albertson / Barlow Insurance 66 All Seasons Garden & Floral 46 Alpine Shop 56 Anderson’s Autobody, Inc. 75 Archer Vacation Condos 19 Artists Studio Tour 46 ArtWorks Gallery 46 Bangkok Cuisine 122 Beyond Hope Resort 60 BF Custom Homes and Buildings, Inc. 113 Bird Aviation Museum & Invention Center 40 Bonner County Daily Bee 118 Bonner County Landscaping 114 Bonner General Health 68 Bowers Construction 114 Bridge Assisted Living, The 17 Café Bodega 122 Carousel Emporium 18 Cedar Street Bridge 129 Century 21/RiverStone 111 CO-OP Country Store 16 Coeur d’ Alene Casino 95 Coldwell Banker 9 Connies Café 125 Dana Construction 112 Delightful Choices 125 Derr Island Waterfront Home For Sale 55 Di Luna’s Café 127 DISH Café 128 Dover Bay 72 DSS Custom Homes 102 Eichardt’s Pub & Grill 128 Evans Brothers Coffee 124 Eve’s Leaves 18 Evergreen Realty 6 Evergreen Realty–Charesse Moore 96-97 Family Health Center 28 Farmers Market at Sandpoint 28 Ferrara Wildlife Photography 46 Festival at Sandpoint 119 Fiesta Bonita 128 Finan McDonald Clothing Company 22
Floating Restaurant, The Forty-One South Foster’s Crossing Fritz’s Frypan Greasy Fingers Bikes N Repair Hallans Gallery Heartwood Center Hive, The Holiday Inn Express Hope Marine Services
131 131 40 19 35 47 49 20 62 60 Intermountain Community Investment Services 38 International Selkirk Loop 119 Jalapeño’s Restaurant 4 Janusz Studio by the Lake 47 Jensen, Brian CPA 66 Joe’s Philly Cheesesteaks 128 Karen Robinson Artist 47 Keokee Books 136 Koch, Dr. Paul E. - Walmart Vision Center 65 K102 Country 117 Lake Pend Oreille Cruises 54 La Quinta Inn 44 Laughing Dog Brewing 35 Lewis & Hawn Dentistry 43 Litehouse Bleu Cheese Factory 53 Local Pages, The 118 MeadowBrook Home & Gift 21 MickDuff’s Brewing Company 129 Miller’s Country Store 65, 125 Monarch Mountain Coffee 130 Mountain West Bank 29 Northern Quest Casino 74 Northridge Vacation Rentals 75 Northwest Handmade 26 Old Church in Hope, The 31 Pacific Construction Company 101 Paint Bucket, The 104 Pedro’s 59 Pend Oreille Pasta & Wine 130 Pend Oreille Shores Resort 64 Pend d’Oreille Winery 49 Petal Talk 70 Pie Hut, The 130 Pierce Auto Center 52
ReStore Habitat For Humanity 104 River Journal, The 116 Rock Creek Alliance 50 Sandpoint Building Supply 100 Sandpoint Business & Events Center 44 Sandpoint Furniture Carpet One 105 Sandpoint Marine & Motorsports 34, 55 Sandpoint Movers 106 Sandpoint Online 137 Sandpoint Optometry 65 Sandpoint Property Management 15 Sandpoint Sports 64 Sandpoint Storage 70 Sandpoint Super Drug 31 Sandpoint Surgical Associates 63 Sandpoint Vacation Rentals 5 Sandpoint West Athletic Club 116 Sandpoint Waldorf School 105 Sayler, Jon R. Architect 110 Schweitzer Mountain Resort 139 Seasons at Sandpoint 37 Second Avenue Pizza 130 Selkirk Craftsman Furniture 105, 114 Selle Valley Construction 3 7BTV (formerly Hesstronics) 32 Shoga Sushi Bar 127 Skywalker Tree Care 110 Sleep’s Cabins 55 Sleep Solutions Northwest 41 Spuds Waterfront Grill 128 Station BBQ, The 130 Sweet Lou’s 122 Tango Café 130 Taylor Insurance 30 Timberframes by Collin Beggs 114 Tomlinson Sandpoint Sotheby’s 2, 140 Tomlinson Sandpoint Sotheby’s–Cindy Bond 71 Trinity at City Beach 4 219 Lounge 123 Western Pleasure Guest Ranch 35 Wildflower Day Spa 65 Winter Ridge Natural Foods 129 Zany Zebra 31 Zero Point Crystals 25
Go Exploring with Keokee Guide Books 800-880-3573
NOW IN PRINT!
5/6/14 3:00 PM
Marketplace Your Buick, GMC truck dealer. New and used sales and leasing. Full service, parts and body shop. Highway 95 N., Ponderay, 263-2118, 1-800-430-5050. www.AlpineMotors.net Help your neighbors through Bonner Partners in Care Clinic. We provide a safety net for those unable to afford medical care in our community. Doctors, nurses and others donate time one night each week to treat up to eight patients per clinic. We need your support! Learn more at bpicc.org Kaniksu Land Trust is a nonprofit land trust serving north Idaho and northwest Montana. We work with landowners to help them keep their land undeveloped or in traditional agricultural or forestry uses while fostering community access to natural areas. Learn more about how you can protect your property, or support our efforts, at kaniksu.org A marketing communications firm providing Web design and hosting, search engine optimization and marketing, graphic design, public relations, editorial and media consultation. 405 Church St., 263-3573, 800-880-3573. www.keokee.com
Over 26 years of rental management experience. Tenant screening, rent collection, accounting, maintenance and marketing. Residential, commercial and mini storage. Friendly, prompt service. 204 E. Superior, 263-4033. www.RLPropertyManagement.com Scandinavian countries represented in this specialty shop. Kitchen items, table tops, candles, electric candleholders, books, cards, rugs, pewter Vikings, mugs, Danish iron candleholders and year-round Christmas. 319 N. First Ave., 263-7722. Special gifts for special people. Vera Bradley bags, Big Sky Carvers, Baggallini, Tyler and BeanPod candles, souvenirs, balloon bouquets, Hallmark cards, books, gift wrap, stationery. 306 N. First Ave., 263-2811. Offering the latest bestsellers, office supplies, machine supplies and free delivery in Sandpoint. Order online. 201 Cedar St., 263-2417. www.Vanderfords.com
Property Management, LLC Protecting your real estate investments since 2003! We provide a wide range of property protection and vacation rental management services for seasonal residents and vacation home owners of North Idaho. Available 24/7 for Property Management, LLC emergencies! www.NorthridgeProperty Management.com. Jeremy 208-290-6847 or Mike 208-290-6531 Farmers’ Market at Sandpoint. Get fresh, locally grown produce - from local farms to your table. Plus baked goods, handcrafts and more. The market is held twice weekly all summer, 3-6 p.m. Wednesdays and 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturdays in Farmin Park, downtown Sandpoint. SandpointFarmersMarket.com
Sandpoint FREE classified ads Got something to sell? Looking for a place to rent, a job ... or looking for love? Post for free, or browse hundreds of ads in Sandpoint’s own version of Craigslist. Go to www.SandpointClassifieds.com.
Get in the Marketplace! To advertise here, call 263-3573 ext. 123 or e-mail email@example.com
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Sandpoint of View
When a lake is more than a lake By Terri Casey Myers At left, Terri and Gary Myers on their houseboat; below, Jeb & Margaret’s Trailer Haven
hen is a lake more than a lake? When it’s a home, a hospital, a hideaway and a
haven. In 2007 I bought a 41-foot houseboat in Portland and had it transported to Lake Pend Oreille. The boat came off the trailer at Bayview, and on that sunny May weekday my partner and I motored it up the lake – seeing not another boat for most of the way – to its new home at Dover Bay Marina on the Pend Oreille River. The marina had just opened, and the Pride & Joy was among its first occupants. Gary and I lived aboard that summer, reveling in the calm mornings and spectacular sunsets on the river and enjoying the surrounding trails on foot and bicycle. The following summer – on 8/8/08, lucky day! – we married in front of a small group of friends at the Dover City Park, steps from the marina. We held a 138
small dinner reception on the deck of the former Sand Creek Grill, on our town’s tiny finger of the lake. We spent our third summer on the houseboat in stark contrast to the first two as Gary endured four rounds of chemotherapy following cancer surgery. After a daylong infusion of the toxic mix, we returned to the healing chamber of the houseboat where he could recover for three weeks before the next treatment. That September we bought a small, park-model mobile home at Jeb & Margaret’s Trailer Haven, in Trestle Creek, where we were again located on a marina and a few yards from the lake. We enjoyed two summers together at our little abode, exchanging the houseboat for a comfy runabout in which we blissfully explored every bay and bit of shoreline of Pend Oreille. Then Gary’s cancer returned, and we hightailed it to our winter home in Florida, where he passed away three months later. Last summer when I returned to Trailer Haven, I was washed over by the subset of memories specific to our summers on this lake. I spent time looking at the many photos of us taken here,
almost all with the blue background of water and sky. I spent the season as if on retreat and did what all new widows and widowers must do: sort through their beloved’s belongings, try to re-envision a home for two as a home for one. In that spirit I began remodeling my trailer. I removed built-ins to open up the small space. I painted and painted and painted. I bought a new sofa. I planted perennial flowers and blueberry bushes. It felt good to have projects to put my hands to, but the lake helped me as much as anything did. Every afternoon I stopped working at a certain hour to sit on the shore or on the docks, sometimes with a book or magazine, sometimes with nothing. I swam every day, and nightly I watched the sun go down, first over Schweitzer and later in the summer farther south over the lights of Sandpoint, the last color in the sky always reflected on the lake’s glassy surface. Although many see Pend Oreille primarily as a playground, for me the lake has played other roles: steady element during personal storms, witness to important passages, comforting companion. But just as waves eventually give way to calm waters, life smooths out, too, and as I return to Sandpoint this summer, in this still new and unexpected chapter of my life, I’m thinking this: I can’t wait to dive in.
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Arts, entertainment, lifestyle and recreation for residents and visitors of Sandpoint, Idaho. Featuring the cover story on trains; interview...
Published on May 15, 2014
Arts, entertainment, lifestyle and recreation for residents and visitors of Sandpoint, Idaho. Featuring the cover story on trains; interview...