Stories by Erin
Meeting Saturday; successful campaigns rare in Washington
Former Vancouver Mayor Royce Pollard advocated for recall of David Madore and Tom Mielke at a packed Clark County commissioners meeting earlier this week.
Suicides greatly exceed homicides, report says
Firearm deaths have exceeded car-crash fatalities in Washington for the first time since 1934, according to a report by the state Office of Financial Management released last week.
His Facebook page is filled with posts wishing him well
Facebook is overflowing with electronic well-wishes and prayers for the beloved signing Costco clerk, Teddy Patrick of Vancouver, who was hospitalized last weekend.
Wary families face the challenge of daunting costs for kids' higher education
Beth Cooper helped her 9-year-old son, Jace, open his own bank account, where he stashes half his $4-a-week allowance. He was thrilled when the balance reached $100.
Stand up to government, event's speakers implore
Even though most of the 250 Republicans who attended Saturday's Lincoln Day dinner drank coffee with their dessert, it was clear the event was all about the Tea Party.
Two 'people of interest' in fire investigation
Boys playing with fire admitted to starting fire that destroyed a vacant duplex in Vancouver's Ogden neighborhood.
Clark County Sheriff's Office volunteers look for cars parked illegally in disabled spots
As Tom Croley drove slowly through the parking lot at Legacy Salmon Creek Medical Center, he and his partner trained their eyes on the dashboards of cars parked in spots marked for disabled visitors.
Nonprofit group led by some of Vancouver's most influential residents, battle-tested executive
The National Park Service's recent takeover of management at Pearson Air Museum from the Fort Vancouver National Trust generated protests, newspaper headlines and a congressional hearing on a bill that would, in effect, return the museum to the trust's operation.
Nearly 41,000 local residents will be eligible for tax credits
An estimated 40,840 Clark County residents will be eligible for help paying for insurance coverage under the 2010 Affordable Care Act -- and most of them don't know it, according to a health-reform advocacy group.
Club brings together 60 of the big dogs for national show at convention center
Club brings together 60 of the big dogs for national show in downtown Vancouver
Documents show intention to break agreement in 2010
Vancouver officials have protested as loudly as anyone about the National Park Service's takeover of Pearson Air Museum last month, yet two years ago they asked the federal agency to do just that, according to documents obtained by The Columbian.
1.2% growth between 2011, 2012 brings total to 438,287
Clark was the sixth fastest growing county in Washington state last year, according to an estimate released by the U.S. Census Bureau on Thursday.
Brush Prairie-Hockinson the most well-off, according to firm's data
If your address ends with 98606, you're likely to be a member of the sandwich generation, contribute to PBS and carry a lot of insurance. And you're probably wealthy.
Budget-struck Vancouver pares back enforcement, education
Although anyone who parks in a disabled spot without a blue placard risks a ticket, not many actually receive them in Vancouver. Enforcement and education efforts have gone by the wayside.
Shooter's wife, neighbors described confrontation, killing to operator
Calls to 911 from Sean H. Doucette's wife and neighbors shed light on the Jan. 29 shooting death of Iosif Dumitrash.
Projected count of people who will be crossing river is part of planning for a new bridge
In a decade of growth in Clark County, a bedroom community where a third of the workforce commutes to Portland, you'd expect to see traffic on the bridges crossing the Columbia River to worsen.
It's a widely held axiom that older voters are the ones who sink school levies.
Use of firearms in assaults, robberies is up, but numbers small
Attention on guns — their use in crimes and their regulation — has intensified since last month's shootings at Clackamas Town Center in the Portland area and Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut.
Despite recent surge, Clark is 3rd-lowest among Washington counties
Vancouver resident Mark Havens learned to shoot his father's rifles as a kid. He had never owned a gun himself until he bought one this week.
Increase affects households earning more than $450K
The fiscal cliff deal that raises taxes on top earners begs the question: Who earns that much around here?
Fundraiser, first considered a scam, withdrawn at family’s request
When a Brush Prairie church received a letter from a man identifying himself as “Reverend Garner” pleading for money for Bethany Storro’s medical expenses, the church’s business administrator smelled a scam. Instead, the letter seems to be a well-meaning but misguided effort by someone Storro met at Elahan Place, a Vancouver rehabilitation program operated by Columbia River Mental Health Services.
Look in kitchen cupboards for health
Officials break ground on $49 million project
The Washington State Department of Transportation took another step toward removing traffic signals from state Highway 500 on Tuesday when it broke ground on a $49 million interchange at St. Johns Boulevard.
While it dropped in past decade, it’s still higher than state’s
The American dream of homeownership has become more elusive in Clark County over the past decade, no surprise to anyone who has watched foreclosure rates here skyrocket during the Great Recession. The homeownership rate dropped from 67.3 percent in 2000 to 65.8 percent in 2010, but remains higher than Washington’s rate of 63.9 percent, according to U.S. Census figures released today.
For many, the consequences of late-career layoffs are dire
Vancouver residents Mark McCloud and Fred Schwarz represent the two — what seem to be inevitable — outcomes of late-career job loss. McCloud, 63, hasn’t been able to find another job, and is at the brink of a retirement he wouldn’t have chosen and might not be able to afford.
Part of 74-acre site, closed since 1991, will be used for road
Clark County commissioners Tuesday approved the purchase of the closed Leichner Landfill and surrounding land for $1.5 million. “By moving ahead now, we can bring this land into productive re-use,” said Jeffrey Mize, a spokesman for the county public works department.
Lori Volkman started a blog to cope with her husband’s military deployment last September. “It started out just as a diary,” the Ridgefield resident said. She gave little thought to the fact that people might actually read it. In less than a year, the blog has garnered almost 25,000 hits.
Details about homeowners emerge; identities of six victims still unconfirmed
As arson investigators dug through the rubble of Vancouver’s deadliest fire in a half-century Monday, residents of Northeast 13th Circle in Vancouver questioned how such a horrific event could happen in their quiet neighborhood.
Camas High School adds a class called Financial Fitness to teach students how saving can be fun
Students in Camas High School’s Financial Fitness class huddled to craft campaigns touting the importance of saving. Christine Moss, 17, and her group planned a video spot to explain the rule of 72 and other key formulas.
Annual festival also includes bicycling and swimming activities
This weekend, a scaled-back International Discovery Walk Festival returns for its 15th year. The economic downturn didn’t spare the beloved celebration of walking. International participation fell last year, and so did sponsorships. Organizers are weary, and ready to hand on the baton. Sound like bad news?
If you’ve ever wanted to subscribe to receive a weekly delivery of fresh produce from a local farm, now’s your chance. The popularity of community-supported agriculture programs, or CSAs, has rocketed in past years to the point that you’d be lucky to find a farm that still had openings in April. This year is different. Farms find themselves under-subscribed, perhaps because of the extended economic downturn, said Luisa DePaiva, owner of Purple Rain Vineyard in Brush Prairie.
Native Arts & Cultures Foundation makes its presence known from Officers Row headquarters
More than a decade of meetings among Native Americans across the country have manifested in an elegantly appointed office near Fort Vancouver. There, a staff of four people work at creating a sort of National Endowment for the Arts for native artists. The Native Arts & Cultures Foundation, created with a $10 million grant from the Ford Foundation, awarded its first grants last year — $394,319 to 26 Native American, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian artists and organizations in 12 states.
No reason to be bored with GameStorm 13 coming to Vancouver HIlton
Economy tanks, move 10 spaces ahead. A poor economy has actually boosted board-game sales even as overall toy sales fell. Looking to pinch pennies, many families brought back game night.
A farmers market booth lets an entrepreneur pitch his brisket face-to-face with the customer base
The spotlight shines on Portland’s food-cart scene, but you could say Vancouver has had one for more than 20 years. It’s just that it’s only around on weekends — and just from spring through autumn.
Editor's note: Here is a story The Columbian published March 15, 2010:
Group will play music from the 1920s-'40s in Ridgefield
If you’ve ever felt like you were born too late, you can step back in time at Ridgefield’s Old Liberty Theater on Saturday to listen to the sounds of the 1930s as performed by The Stolen Sweets. “All of us in the band, we joke we were born in the wrong era,” said Jen Bernard, a vocalist in the Portland trio. “We just love old theaters. It’s where this music was originally played.”
New Cinetopia, return of Kiggins, Liberty will cheer movie fans
From high class to low cost, Clark County’s movie-going options will expand this year. Twenty-six silver screens are expected to open here in 2011. Two historic venues, the two-screen Liberty Theatre in Camas and the single-screen Kiggins Theater in downtown Vancouver, will re-open. And luxury-theater operator Cinetopia plans to open a 23-screen venue at Westfield Vancouver mall in November.
2010 Census figures reveal that number of Latinos in Clark County nearly doubled in past decade
The big jump in Clark County’s Hispanic population comes as no surprise to the Rev. Armando Perez. About 900 people attend his Spanish-language Mass at St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church each Sunday.
It’s pretty easy to keep kids busy when the sun is shining. In Clark County, though, expect 150 days of rain a year. Better have a list of activities for those showery days when kids go nuts cooped up in the house.
Vancouver program opens storefront downtown, offers online ordering for members
The Vancouver Food Cooperative, a dream that dates back to 2003, is starting to materialize. It may only be open intermittently for pickup of online orders, but the co-op has an actual storefront in the Wallis Engineering building in downtown Vancouver.
Only in Clark County would population growth of 23 percent over a decade be considered slow. Clark County’s expansion over the past 10 years fell well short of the 45 percent growth of the previous decade, according to U.S. Census figures released Wednesday.
Vancouver native’s third runner-up finish at Miss America Pageant icing on amazing year
Competing in last month’s Miss America pageant in front of 6.67 million television viewers was so intense for Miss Washington Jacquie Brown, a Vancouver native, that she sobbed during commercial breaks. “For me to be there representing my state, it was emotional,” said Brown, 22. “Because I knew how much I put into it, and how much the people around me had put into helping me and supporting me.”
Doctors, yoga fans proclaim virtues of conscious breathing
Breathing for relaxation • Sit quietly in a comfortable position with your eyes closed.
Event’s big draw is casual evaluations of heirlooms, or just objects with history
If you’re planning to head to the Clark County Antique and Collectible Show to find out how much your family treasures are worth, you might be surprised by an appraiser’s advice on what to bring.
If you want to gain fitness and lose weight, think beyond protein shakes and supplements. Registered dietician Alison Ozgur and certified personal trainer Derrick deLay encourage their clients to eat whole foods, preferably plants.
Many in private sector face a daunting retirement
Don Bivins became a firefighter 35 years ago to save lives. At age 19, he gave little thought to his retirement. Now, at a time when many of his private-sector peers have seen their own retirement dreams dashed, and with the state facing a two-year $4.7 billion shortfall, Bivins’ pension and those of his fellow government workers are drawing new scrutiny. A fight over public pensions may be looming in the legislative session that begins on Monday.
After a double mastectomy but still facing more treatment, Krista Colvin of Camas hits high points of her family’s holiday traditions and looks at a calendar full of activity
Krista Colvin slowly wakes from surgery. She slips in and out of consciousness. In this dreamy state, she thinks more about when she’ll get to see her family than about the fact that she no longer has breasts. She had time to work through the impending physical loss in the months leading to her mastectomy. Krista, 43, was diagnosed in March with cancer. Now surgeons have removed her right breast, which had two tumors, as well as cancerous lymph nodes. Because Krista carries a gene mutation that increases the chance of cancer recurring, her healthy breast was removed, too.
Jeff Horenstein, a 1997 Mountain View High School graduate, is competing for a Sony recording contract and $100,000 on the NBC show, “The Sing Off.” His a cappella group, Groove for Thought, consists of seven singers from Western Washington. He started the group 10 years ago.
When B.J. Babcock underwent surgery to replace a faulty heart valve, she asked her doctors if there was another woman with a similar problem she could contact. “Both the surgeon and cardiologist said ‘no,’” recalled Babcock, a 58-year-old Ridgefield resident. “I needed companionship from someone who had been through the healing process.”
LDS church will display more than 600 crèches
Vancouver retiree Bruce Preece spent 50 hours crafting a lawn display of baby Jesus, Mary, Joseph, wise men and shepherds out of plywood a couple of years ago. The stark white figures stand out against a gold-hued cutout of Bethlehem, which he designed from his memory of a 1978 visit to the holy city. His handiwork will be among 600 similar scenes of all sizes and media on display this weekend at the 10th annual Festival of the Nativities at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Vancouver.