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

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.

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: 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.

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.

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: 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.

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.

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: 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.

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.

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: 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.

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:

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.

Try This: New digs for Dozer Day

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

Dozer Day 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.

Try This: Student musicals galore

By Ashley Swanson May 10, 2014 6 a.m.

Tonight marks the final performances of four high school spring theater productions.Evergreen High School Theater Department presents "Urinetown: The Musical," a satirical musical set in a world where the government has placed a ban on private toilets. All restrooms are controlled by a single megacorporation, which charges the city's residents for access, until a hero leads a pee-for-free rebellion.

Try this: Get moving at Marshall

By Ashley Swanson May 3, 2014 6 a.m.

The Marshall Community Center will host a family fun day complete with a with movie screening, sports activities and music performances. There will be public swim sessions, a park cleanup at Marshall Park, along with hands-on activities from Zumba to pottery before the movie screening of "Frozen," rated PG, at 6:30 p.m. Visitors are encouraged to bring blankets to sit on.

Bits 'n Pieces: Teen actor embraces 'fancy' role

By Ashley Swanson May 3, 2014 6 a.m.

For Skyview High School sophomore Hannah Wilson, remembering to be a young girl is the most challenging part of her performance.

Try This: All about gardens

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

In sunshine or during rain showers, spring gardening season is in full bloom with events this weekend.

Try This: Earth Day, away!

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

The Clark Public Utilities StreamTeam hosts its 15th annual Earth Day celebration, with more than 40 organizations participating in the EcoFair. Activities include nature walks, live music, children's crafts and more. The Audubon Society of Portland will present a birds of prey show, there will be fish releases by the Northwest Wild Fish Rescue, and the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry will have an interactive insect and reptile station.

Bits 'n' Pieces: Double bassist earns solo spotlight

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

Nicholas Arredondo wanted to make his last concert with the Portland Youth Philharmonic one to remember. He will be one of two soloists featured in the philharmonic's spring concert, which will wrap up the orchestra's 90th season. Not only will the concert feature two soloists — a rarity, according to Arredondo — it will be the first time in the philharmonic's recorded history that a double bassist will be a featured soloist.

Styles wow at Couve Couture  

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

Downtown Vancouver celebrated a fashionable ode to spring during Saturday's Couve Couture. Ten local designers showcased their different design perspectives during the fashion show held at the Red Lion Hotel Vancouver at the Quay. It was also Seth Aaron Henderson's last Vancouver show before his upcoming move to Los Angeles."All the feedback that we've had so far, especially online, has been great. People are already excited for the next show," said Alisa Ann Tetreault, one of the show's organizers and designers.Other designers included Nike Pappas, the recipient of the show's junior designer scholarship, newcomers Kate Beeman, Nicole Smith of Sweet Spot Skirts, Carlie Bailes and Caryn Stockwell. It was a strong showing from returning designers Lydia Wagner, Dawn Elise and Kelsey Lovelle.All 600 seats that could fit in the venue were filled with attendees. The event was a community effort, said Tetreault, with a volunteer staff of 200 models, hair stylists, makeup artists, caterers and audio-visual crew working to transform the hotel space. Local catering was provided by Bleu Door Bakery, Compass Coffee, Niche Wine Bar and Willem's on Main.After the show, designers set up tables to sell and take orders for their designs. "You couldn't even get to the tables, because so many people wanted to talk to the designers," Tetreault said. "To get encouragement from the people in the audience, that's such an honor for a designer.""Brett (Allred) and I are already talking about next year," Tetreault said. And if someone happens to have a warehouse Couve Couture could borrow, she said with a laugh, they'd loved to take it over for their next show.

Try This: You can count on critters

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

Lizards, frogs and newts are waiting to be found by amateur herpetologists during the 14th annual Critter Count.

Couve Couture spring fashion show

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

Couve Couture has cultivated another lovely garden of designers for its spring fashion show. Ten local designers, including Vancouver's Seth Aaron Henderson of "Project Runway" fame, will showcase their latest looks at the Red Lion Hotel Vancouver at the Quay.

Bits 'n' Pieces: Surprise frog reigns on canvas

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

It was inspired by an unexpected frog. Rather, a lot of unexpected frogs. Fascinated by the flowers of Hawaii, watercolor artist Lynda Raven Brake was taking pictures of the water lily ponds during her trip to Kauai's National Tropical Botanical Garden. "I didn't see frogs at the time, but when I developed the pictures, there were frogs everywhere," said the Felida resident.It was inspired by an unexpected frog. Rather, a lot of unexpected frogs. Fascinated by the flowers of Hawaii, watercolor artist Lynda Raven Brake was taking pictures of the water lily ponds during her trip to Kauai’s National Tropical Botanical Garden. “I didn’t see frogs at the time, but when I developed the pictures, there were frogs everywhere,” said the Felida resident.

Try This: Tulips, in still life or full trot

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

The tulip-themed events are one of the many options for getting out and about this weekend.

Sunbreaks bring out Clark County horse riders

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

For horse owners, spring is the season for conditioning their animals, after horses spend a long winter in the barn and the pasture.

Try This: Enjoy Japan's culture

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

The festival is one of the many options for getting out and about this weekend.

Try This: Dance, Play, Learn in Clark County

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

From the classic ballet of "Sleeping Beauty" to the iconic contemporary dances of Bob Fosse, "Columbia Dance Presents!" crosses dance genres. Columbia Dance's signature performance will include excerpts from the ballet, three pieces of Fosse choreography and a premiere work by Artistic Director Jan Hurst. The matinee show will feature a performance by the junior company dancers. The evening performance will include work by guest choreographer Eowyn Emerald.

Bits 'n' Pieces: Vancouver designer slips into lingerie week

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

Kaaren Bedi's slips, gowns and chemises are not something you'd find in a Victoria's Secret.

Try This: Season opens at farmers market

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

Say hello to vendors old and new during the opening of the Vancouver Farmers Market's 25th season. With spring right around the corner, market shoppers may find many vegetables making early March appearances. Visitors can be on the lookout for carrots, herbs, wild mushrooms, leafy greens, potatoes and radishes, along with bouquets of daffodils. Fresh-baked goods, local meats, handmade crafts and beverage samplings are some of the market's year-round items that are sure to start your weekend on a good note.