Save the Date: Holiday fun abounds in the county

By Ashley Swanson December 20, 2014 6 a.m.

Dream Big Community Center will host a free family fun night for all ages, with free admission and skate rental from 1 to 4 p.m. today at the Mountain View Ice Arena, 14313 S.E. Mill Plain Blvd., Vancouver. Visit www.dreambigcc.org.

Save the Date: Classic holiday movies back on big screen

By Ashley Swanson December 13, 2014 6 a.m.

This weekend offers up a chance to cozy up at the local cinema with classic holiday movies.

Bits 'n' Pieces: Hockinson artist sculpts GI's courage

By Ashley Swanson December 13, 2014 6 a.m.

It is Chad Caswell's first solo monument: a bronze soldier appearing ready to take on the world. The 21-year-old was commissioned two years ago by Oregon Rep. Jim Weidner and nonprofit group REAL-Heroes to honor Lt. Col. Leonard DeWitt and his story.

Save the Date: Christmas festivities kicking into high gear

By Ashley Swanson December 6, 2014 6 a.m.

You don't need to leave Clark County to have a "White Christmas." Journey Theater Arts Group presents the musical adaptation featuring 17 of Irving Berlin's classic songs, as successful song-and-dance act Bob and Phil follow two beautiful sisters to their Christmas show at a Vermont lodge. But the lodge is in danger of closing due to the lack of snow. The show begins at 7 tonight, 2 p.m. Sunday and continues Dec. 12-14 at the Washburn Performing Arts Center, 1201 39th St., Washougal. Admission for tonight's show is $10 to $13; regular admission is $12 to $15, $10 to $13 for youth and seniors. Call 360-750-8550 or visit www.journeytheater.org

Save the Date: Holiday festivities branch out

By Ashley Swanson November 29, 2014 6 a.m.

Capture a bit of the holiday spirit this weekend during the Festival of the Trees.

Go: Ideas for your weekend — Tree lighting, ballet, music

By Ashley Swanson November 28, 2014 6 a.m.

Stuff to do this weekend.

Save the Date: Firstenburg Center offers pre-holiday fun for the family

By Ashley Swanson November 22, 2014 6 a.m.

Spend the weekend with family during the Family Fun Day and Movie Night at Firstenburg Community Center, 700 N.E. 136th Ave., Vancouver.

Bits 'n' Pieces: Camas High trumpeter makes musical mark

By Ashley Swanson November 21, 2014 6 a.m.

It was Isaac Hodapp's second trip to Nashville, Tenn., as a trumpet player.

Go: Ideas for your weekend — Holiday Market, 'Mamma Mia'

By Ashley Swanson November 21, 2014 5:59 a.m.

Get out and explore this weekend

Save the Date: High school theatrical productions entertaining respite from cold

By Ashley Swanson November 15, 2014 6 a.m.

With a chill in the air, it's a good weekend to enjoy the warm lights of the stage. Prairie High School brings the classic Broadway musical "Hello Dolly!" to life.

Save the Date: Parade pays tribute to Clark County veterans

By Ashley Swanson November 8, 2014 6 a.m.

The Lough Legacy Veterans Parade will honor our nation's veterans this morning with one of the largest parades on the West Coast. The event begins at 10 a.m. with a ceremony before Boy Scout troops, marching bands, rifle squads and veterans organizations march down Officers Row, 1101 Officers Row, Vancouver.

Bits 'n' Pieces: 'Dapper' clothes defy gender roles

By Ashley Swanson November 7, 2014 6 a.m.

Battle Ground married couple Vanna and Rasha Pecoraro are on a dapper mission to make a difference.

Clark County Open Studios tour eye-opening

By Ashley Swanson November 2, 2014 6 a.m.

Next weekend, 50 artists will place welcome signs outside their work spaces for the Clark County Open Studios tour. Visitors can stop by as many or as few studios as they wish from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Nov. 8 and 9.

Save the Date: Final scream for Halloween

By Ashley Swanson November 1, 2014 6 a.m.

If you want to hang on to Halloween just a bit longer, the Fear PDX haunted house finale is from 7 to 11 tonight. Visitors can try to brave the Slaughter, the Curse, and the Outbreak at Vancouver Plaza, 7701 N.E. Vancouver Plaza Drive. Tickets are $20, $35 for fast pass.

Save the Date: Farmers market, music and drama

By Ashley Swanson October 25, 2014 6 a.m.

Give a fond farewell to the Vancouver Farmers Market, which draws to a close Sunday. Mushrooms, winter squash, fresh bread and fall-colored flowers can still be found near the Capt. George Vancouver statue from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. today and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday along Sixth and Esther streets, downtown Vancouver; 360-737-8298 or vancouverfarmersmarket.com. The holiday market will return for a brief stay, Nov. 29 and 30, featuring artisans, music and Santa at the Hilton Vancouver Washington, 301 W. Eighth St., Vancouver.

Bits 'n' Pieces: Volunteers play key role in new trail at Beacon Rock park

By Ashley Swanson October 24, 2014 10 a.m.

After 10 years of planning and two years of physical work, a new connector trail between Beacon Rock to the Columbia River is now complete. River to Rock Trail connects the Doetsch Ranch day-use area and boat moorage to the trail that climbs up to the top of Beacon Rock.

Save the Date: Get your spook on, this weekend and beyond

By Ashley Swanson October 18, 2014 6 a.m.

Frightful fun for all ages fills this weekend.

Save the Date: Events will help you savor the season

By Ashley Swanson October 11, 2014 6 a.m.

Savor the fall season with a steam train ride through the forests of north Clark County, highlighting the autumn foliage. The trip leaves at noon and 2:30 p.m. today and Sunday from Chelatchie Prairie Railroad, 207 N. Railroad Ave., Yacolt. The ride includes stops to visit the local waterfalls. Tickets are $20, $19 for seniors, $15 for ages 5 to 12, $13 for ages 2 to 4. Reservations recommended. Call 360-686-3559 or visit www.bycx.com.

Bits 'n' Pieces: International Day of Girl will ROC locally

By Ashley Swanson October 10, 2014 10 a.m.

The International Day of the Girl will be celebrated locally, with help from the members of Girls ROC. The group of girls ages 12 to 17 from across Clark County spent this summer reaching out to city council members, identifying barriers to women and girls, and writing proclamations. The cities of Vancouver and Camas adopted proclamations to recognize Day of the Girl on Saturday.

Save the Date: Pumpkin patches open for passionate pickers

By Ashley Swanson October 4, 2014 6 a.m.

The blue skies of early October make an ideal background for changing leaves and outdoor events. For those who like the colors of the season, this weekend should be perfect pumpkin-picking weather. Local pumpkin patches open this weekend:

Try This: All dressed up for history

By Ashley Swanson September 27, 2014 6 a.m.

Fort Vancouver National Historic Site will offer free admission inside the reconstructed settlement as part of National Public Lands Day. The fort's costume and textile department will also be hosting a Summer's End Promenade, a Victorian tradition for families and couples to walk along an area in order to be seen. Volunteers of all ages will be dressed to represent a range of period costumes during their stroll along Officers Row. Visitors can learn about each era and traditional clothing construction and style from the costumed interpreters. In case of inclement weather, the event will be in the Pearson Air Museum. Photography is encouraged.

Bits 'n' Pieces: Holiday tale heralds new career

By Ashley Swanson September 27, 2014 6 a.m.

Writing became a lifeline for Victoria Lindstrom after an injury ended her career as dental hygienist.

Try This: Discover local farms' bounty

By Ashley Swanson September 20, 2014 6 a.m.

The 16th annual Harvest Celebration Day Farm Tour, hosted by Washington State University Clark County Extension, will showcase the bounty of 12 local farms through a self-guided tour. Participating farms will offer self-pick fields and fresh produce, and let visitors meet the farm animals. Specific activities include hay rides on every hour at Bi-Zi Farms, goat cheese production demonstrations at Conway Family Farm, and herb talks by the Garden Delights CSA and Herb Farm. There will be draft horse demonstrations at Yacolt Mountain Farm, Half Moon Farms will showcase its honey and beekeeping practices, and White Oak Alpacas will demonstrate how alpaca wool goes from animal to yarn.

Try This: Cars, planes strut their stuff

By Ashley Swanson September 13, 2014 6 a.m.

The Wheels and Wings Cruise-In features classic cars and vintage airplanes as part of the Port of Camas-Washougal's community appreciation day. There will also be live music, free hot dogs and children's activities. Entry for the car and airplane show is free, with prizes awarded in many categories. Donations support the Camas-Washougal Aviation Association scholarship fund.

Bits n Pieces: Steakburger gets ready to hit the road

By Ashley Swanson September 13, 2014 6 a.m.

Though the building and miniature golf course are now gone, Steakburger and its special sauce live on.

Try This: Annual festival full of flavor

By Ashley Swanson September 6, 2014 6 a.m.

Are there different levels of garlic flavor? At the Northwest Organic Farms' annual Garlic Festival, 10 different types of garlic will be available for visitors to taste. There will also be 20 different varieties of tomatoes ready for visitors' taste buds. Washington State University master gardeners will be on hand to answer gardening questions, along with bluegrass music, arts and craft vendors and children's activities.

Try This: Dogs can get in the swim

By Ashley Swanson August 30, 2014 6 a.m.

Canines can celebrate the end of summer with a splash in the Marshall Community Center pool before it's drained for an annual week of maintenance. Small dogs of 25 pounds or less can have the pool to themselves from noon to 1:30 p.m. before the waters are open to dogs of all types from 1:30 to 4 p.m.

Bits 'n' Pieces: Stage combat instructor aims to give performances punch

By Ashley Swanson August 30, 2014 6 a.m.

A punch that the audience sees coming is something David Bareford wants to avoid. As a stage combat instructor, Bare- ford teaches actors how to engage with fisticuffs in a way that is realistically believable. "I think that the important thing in any stage fight is not that any audience can explain moves, but they must know what's going on between characters," he said.

Try This: Up, up and away at Pearson

By Ashley Swanson August 23, 2014 6 a.m.

See an airplane from the pilot's seat during Open Cockpit Day, where an array of specialty airplanes will be open to visitors. Weather permitting, volunteer pilots from the Experimental Aircraft Association also will be on hand to give free airplane rides to children ages 8 to 17 on a first-come, first-served basis. The education center also offers a flight simulator lab and model-glider building.

Bits 'n' Pieces: Art flows through wilderness

By Ashley Swanson August 16, 2014 6 a.m.

Ridgefield artist Jennifer Williams needed a lot of maps.

Try This: Sheep dogs on the clock

By Ashley Swanson August 16, 2014 6 a.m.

The sheep dog trials are among many options for getting out and about this weekend. Here are some other suggestions.

Try This: Fair reaches homestretch

By Ashley Swanson August 9, 2014 6 a.m.

The fair is among many options for getting out and about this weekend. Here are some other suggestions.

Try This: Music on tap all over

By Ashley Swanson August 2, 2014 6 a.m.

Enjoy the weather with an outdoor concert this weekend. There are plenty of performances to choose from. Local Americana rock band Lonesome Highway features guitarist Richie Bean, drummer Susan Costa, guitarist Joe Wright and bassist Monte Allen. The band will perform originals and alternative country, rock and folk covers as part of La Center's summer concert series.

Bits 'n' Pieces: Arm wrestler to compete for world title

By Ashley Swanson August 1, 2014 6 a.m.

Nearly everyone has challenged someone to an arm wresting match at least once. But few can claim to represent their country in the hand-to-hand sport. Hockinson resident Josh McEllrath qualified for a spot on Team USA to compete at the World Armwrestling Championship in September, held in Lithuania's capital city of Vilnius.

Try This: Say aloha to weekend

By Ashley Swanson July 26, 2014 6 a.m.

Thousands of visitors will spread out on the lawn of Esther Short Park to enjoy the sounds of the Pacific Islands at the annual Ho'ike and Hawaiian Festival. The day begins with the 5K Aloha Fun Run/Walk at 8 a.m. along the waterfront trail. The festival kicks off at 10 a.m. as hula performances, Hawaiian musicians and Polynesian singers showcase different aspects of their cultures. There will also be island-inspired children's activities, along with food and craft vendors for those looking for shave ice and flower leis.

Try This: Rural heritage feted

By Ashley Swanson July 19, 2014 6 a.m.

The 20th annual Rural Heritage Fair, hosted by the Fort Vancouver Antique Equipment Association, showcases the tools used in Clark County during the 19th and 20th centuries. There will be live blacksmith demonstrations and displays of early electric and steam-powered machines, tractors, classic cars and fire engines. There will also be a children's pioneer village with hands-on activities, a swap meet and a tour of the ranch's collection of treasures.

Bits 'n' Pieces: Archaeology students dig Mayan city

By Ashley Swanson July 19, 2014 6 a.m.

An archaeological dig site in Belize had plenty of Cougars.

Try This: Amboy fun is a cut above

By Ashley Swanson July 12, 2014 6 a.m.

The furious thunder of saws will sound during Amboy Territorial Days' annual logging competition. Participants will compete in numerous events including saw races, pole climbs and ax throws from noon to 6 p.m. today. Before the competition visitors can check out the annual parade beginning at 10 a.m. from Amboy Middle School and ending at the park. Musical performances, children's arts and crafts show, and a beer garden will be open through the weekend. Sunday will feature a four-wheel-drive car show, and the popular lawn-mower races will take off at 1 p.m.

Try This: Head 'em up, move out

By Ashley Swanson July 5, 2014 6 a.m.

The final night of the 44th annual Vancouver Rodeo will feature all eight cowboy competitions, from rough-stock events to roping contests, along with crowd favorite mutton-busting. There also will be a community dance after the rodeo.

Bits 'n' Pieces: Forester joins elite academy

By Ashley Swanson July 5, 2014 6 a.m.

Jerry Franklin has been fascinated by the forests of the Pacific Northwest all his life.

Try This: Art, tossed and found

By Ashley Swanson June 28, 2014 6 a.m.

The Recycled Arts Festival is one of Vancouver's best-known events, as more than 120 artists will fill Esther Short Park with their creative uses of recycled items. Visitors can discover sculptures made from soda cans, purses woven from plastic bags and garden art created from wrenches. Stop by the tossed-and-found station to see the surprising number of items that end up in the landfill, and their alternative uses. There also will be musical performances, a stilt walker, Eartha the Ecological Clown, arts and crafts, and hands-on science from the Oregon Museum of Science & Industry. Held in conjunction with the Recycled Arts Festival, the Green Living Showcase will be across the street at Heritage Square, highlighting sustainable products and services, with an emphasis on green home building.

Try This: Cruise in for Planters Days

By Ashley Swanson June 21, 2014 6 a.m.

Woodland's 92nd annual community celebration hosts its biggest events today with the Woodland Planters Days Parade at 11 a.m.

Try This: Lots of fun on the run

By Ashley Swanson June 14, 2014 6 a.m.

Cheer on more than 3,000 runners as they take part in the Vancouver USA Marathon races. The full and half marathons are Sunday, with runners having seven hours to complete the course beginning and ending at Esther Short Park. The marathon will travel to Vancouver Lake, before heading back through the Fort Vancouver National Historical Site to Wintler Park on the Columbia River. The full weekend of activities includes the Active Expo and Summer Brewfest at Esther Short Park. The second annual beer festival will feature 25 local and regional breweries offering 50 different summer-inspired brews to those 21 and older.

Bits 'n' Pieces: Aquanauts see the world underwater

By Ashley Swanson June 14, 2014 6 a.m.

In the world of ocean exploration, the name Cousteau sparks the imagination. On June 1, Fabien Cousteau, grandson of famed oceanographer Jacques Cousteau, began Mission 31, to live underwater for 31 days in the marine lab Aquarius.

Try This: Paddle up for water events

By Ashley Swanson June 7, 2014 6 a.m.

Ridgefield's Big Paddle invites the community to explore the water and wildlife by kayak, paddleboard or canoe during a two-hour adventure along Lake River. The event begins with a ceremony, a Chinook drumming and blessing, along with a scavenger hunt and information booths. Boat rentals are available at Ridgefield Kayak.When: 9 a.m. ceremony, 10 a.m. start today.Where: Public Boat Launch, Port of Ridgefield, 5 W. Mill St., Ridgefield.Admission: Free, $25 for kayak rentals.Telephone: 360-727-4520.Web: http://ridgefieldkayak.com.

Try This: Learning takes flight at Open Cockpit Day

By Ashley Swanson May 31, 2014 6 a.m.

Visitors old and young alike can explore historic airplanes on display during Open Cockpit Day. The Pearson Field Education Center will host many activities, including trying out the flight simulator lab and building a model glider. Those ages 8 through 17 have a chance to take a free airplane ride with volunteers, weather permitting. Flights are first-come, first-served.

Bits 'n' Pieces: Camas photographer explores 'Indian Country'

By Ashley Swanson May 31, 2014 6 a.m.

When Brian M. Christopher and his family moved to Camas in 2005, he was surprised by the number of Native American names that mark Northwest geography. Yet, he said, you really had to search to find the layers of history beyond the names.

Try This: Holiday outings abound

By Ashley Swanson May 24, 2014 6 a.m.

The Soldiers' Bivouac is among many options for getting out and about this weekend.

Bits 'n' Pieces: Elder Crow strives for rock justice

By Ashley Swanson May 17, 2014 6 a.m.

Tyler Morgan considers his band, Elder Crow, "his baby." A guitarist who's played in local bands Lincoln's Beard and Cutback, Elder Crow marks Morgan's first time as a band frontman.