Bits'n' Pieces: Speakers show off at talkathon

By Scott Hewitt August 22, 2014 6 a.m.

Alexis Mason spent an entire teaching career terrified of speaking up.

Home offers second chances

By Scott Hewitt August 21, 2014 8:19 p.m.

Robben Ryder is looking forward to the day she regains legal custody of her youngest daughter. She knows her daughter is proud of her and eager to return.

Volunteers harvest Bob Buker's corn for Clark County Food Bank

By Scott Hewitt August 21, 2014 6 a.m.

Before there was centralized, public acreage on Northeast 78th Street that's popular with volunteers who grow tons of produce each year for the Clark County Food Bank, there was Bob Buker.

Clark County food banks hit by recall

By Scott Hewitt August 20, 2014 8:47 p.m.

A natural food manufacturer has announced a nationwide, voluntary recall of some peanut butter and almond butter products due to potential salmonella contamination. Some of the products were sold or distributed in this area.

Youth jobs, education aim of $1.1M federal grant

By Scott Hewitt August 18, 2014 6 a.m.

As many as 60 Clark County youth who seem headed for trouble — dropping out of school, failing to find work — will benefit from a $1.1 million grant from the U.S. Department of Labor that aims to help them stay in school or earn equivalency diplomas while also building construction skills.

Criminal justice focus of mental health conference

By Scott Hewitt August 16, 2014 6 a.m.

Advocates and activists have been "piecemealing" changes and improvements in Washington state's mental health system for years. It hasn't been good enough, according to Gordon Bopp, president of the state chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness, a grass-roots group that kicked off a weekend conference at Vancouver's Red Lion Hotel at the Quay on Friday.

North county food bank seeks to expand

By Scott Hewitt August 15, 2014 6 a.m.

BATTLE GROUND — Elizabeth Cerveny and the board of the North County Community Food Bank have a big vision for their future: a spacious $2.5 million building that sister social service agencies would also call home. They're not sure how realistic that is, but executive director Cerveny is spreading the word to see what turns up.

Conference on mental illness will have diverse agenda

By Scott Hewitt August 8, 2014 6 a.m.

The statewide conference on mental illness that's coming to Vancouver next weekend will be totally serious and really fun.

Therapy aids Olivia’s quest

By Scott Hewitt August 7, 2014 7:18 p.m.

When Olivia Hughes wasn’t quite 2 years old, a physical therapists’s suspicions about her were confirmed: cerebral palsy. She’d been born prematurely, and her brand-new brain didn’t get all the oxygen it needed.

Family anchored farm in Felida Red Barn

By Scott Hewitt August 6, 2014 6 a.m.

Today's Northwest 119th Street is a major connector, busy with traffic and split by a double yellow line. A C-Tran bus route even passes near here, much to the amazement of three sisters who grew up on the family farm that became the Felida Red Barn.

Sikh temple taking shape

By Scott Hewitt August 2, 2014 6 a.m.

A new Sikh temple is rising from the ashes of the nearly finished building that burned in October 2012. Construction is expected to finish in March 2015, or perhaps sooner, according to project manager Tony Singh.

Bits 'n' Pieces: Master gardeners prove trees are the coolest friends we've got

By Scott Hewitt August 2, 2014 6 a.m.

Who are your BFFs on these scorching summer days? Trees, of course.

Match fills kids' food backpacks for Share

By Scott Hewitt July 30, 2014 6 a.m.

The combined fundraising efforts of Share in Clark County and CenturyLink all across the nation have pulled in a total of $273,712 for Share and the hungry children it feeds.

Subsidized renters prove challenging, local landlords say

By Scott Hewitt July 27, 2014 6 a.m.

Local landlords Lyn Ayers and Patti Silver both dedicate a small percentage of their business to low-income tenants. Both say they keep the rent “artificially low” for needy but deserving folks whom they’ve selected with care.

Homeless: Placement thwarted by tight rental market

By Scott Hewitt July 27, 2014 6 a.m.

Getting seriously systematic about attacking homelessness has helped Clark County's Council for the Homeless solve a lot of problems — and brought it face to face with another big one.

Children's Center breaks ground on building

By Scott Hewitt July 23, 2014 4:46 p.m.

Children's Center, a homegrown Vancouver nonprofit agency that brings mental health care to uninsured and underinsured children, broke ground Wednesday on its new building in east Vancouver. Dignitaries, supporters and neighbors who turned out weren't deterred by strong rain during the noontime ceremony.

Pot and apartments: clear restrictions, hazy realities

By Scott Hewitt July 21, 2014 5:26 p.m.

Kristin Dorsett lived at the Esther Short Commons apartment building for two years, and she logged her fair share of complaints about the place — including deferred maintenance and the stink of cigarette smoke, which her elementary-age daughter found especially gross, she said.

Saturday downtown: Fire in the Belly

By Scott Hewitt July 19, 2014 8:12 p.m.

Forget the heat. Move as fast as you can. Lives are at stake.

Horse trailer comes unhitched, horses walk home

By Scott Hewitt July 19, 2014 6:43 p.m.

A horse trailer with two horses on board came unhitched from the truck pulling it at 3 p.m. Saturday. The accident occurred northeast of Battle Ground in the 22700 block of 182nd Avenue.

88-year-old Salmon Creek man considered as missing

By Scott Hewitt July 19, 2014 6 p.m.

Police and neighbors are looking for an 88-year-old Salmon Creek man who drove away from his home on July 18 and has not been seen since.

Bits 'n' Pieces: Young hams, techs sought for free stagecraft camps

By Scott Hewitt July 18, 2014 6 a.m.

Calling all high school theater geeks! That means you, stagehands and equipment techs, and you too, spotlight hogs and drama queens!

Arc afloat again

By Scott Hewitt July 18, 2014 6 a.m.

Mike Piper's first labor as the new executive director of the Arc of Southwest Washington, early in 2013, was overwhelmingly symbolic: there were burst pipes in the women's restroom. Who's our maintenance guy? You are, he was told. So there he was on day one, in the bathroom with mop and bucket, cleaning up the mess.

Bits 'n' Pieces: Warm heart, warm heads

By Scott Hewitt July 11, 2014 6 a.m.

When she was just a little girl, Janet Holmes needed something to occupy her hands and her mind. Her mother had died when she was six years old, and she lived in misery with relatives.

What's Up With That? Which jurisdiction should you call about potholes?

By Scott Hewitt July 9, 2014 6 a.m.

I've been reporting the potholes at the intersection of Southeast 164th Avenue and Mill Plain Boulevard for months now using the Clark County online forms. The holes are so big someone is bound to break an axle on them and still they are there. What does it take for this state to do even basic maintenance?

Affordable apartments coming to downtown Vancouver

By Scott Hewitt July 8, 2014 4:08 p.m.

An apartment building for people who earn substantially less than the local average will start rising this year on a wedge of land between 15th Street and Mill Plain Boulevard, just west of Columbia Street, in downtown Vancouver. An existing office building on the southeast corner of the property, at Columbia and Mill Plain, will remain.

'Criminal subculture' follows ex-convicts, hard to escape

By Scott Hewitt July 6, 2014 6 a.m.

The Portland-Vancouver area is a mixed bag for hard-core racists and violent white supremacists looking to get organized, if online discussions posted at sites such as Stormfront are any indication. Those discussions tend to bemoan the difficulty of finding like-minded people; they also betray ideological squabbling and name-calling over who truly grasps the white power picture.

Ways to Work: affordable loans with impact

By Scott Hewitt July 5, 2014 5:18 p.m.

The world is a better place because Jenny Rund, an itinerant personal caretaker and Certified Nursing Assistant, has affordable wheels.

Survey aims for '500,000 Voices'

By Scott Hewitt June 29, 2014 6 a.m.

What do you care about the most? What kind of future do you want for this region?

Homeless students find Refuge with Vancouver couple

By Scott Hewitt June 29, 2014 6 a.m.

Vancouver couple's program provides a home, stability with aim of helping them graduate

Ramadan unites Clark County Muslims

By Scott Hewitt June 29, 2014 6 a.m.

Being Muslim in America is a little like being American in America. Look beyond the unity of belief and identity and you'll find a dazzling diversity of origins, ethnicities, accents and complexions.

Twyla Barnes named Clark County First Citizen for 2014

By Scott Hewitt June 27, 2014 7:17 p.m.

Barnes has lead educational equity efforts across six counties for 20 years

Bits 'n' Pieces: Crime on the climb in mystery

By Scott Hewitt June 27, 2014 6 a.m.

Kate Dyer-Seeley is like her fictitious heroine, Meg Reed: She's somehow gotten herself into a surprisingly high spot.

Intertwine group seeks greater investment in regional parks, trails

By Scott Hewitt June 19, 2014 8:06 p.m.

Thursday's meeting of the Intertwine Alliance happened to convene in Clark County, but it could have been anywhere in the Portland-Vancouver metropolitan area. That's the whole point of the Intertwine Alliance, a regional partnership of anyone and everyone interested in developing parks, trails and green spaces.

Big Brothers Big Sisters give a big assist in life

By Scott Hewitt June 15, 2014 6 a.m.

Shy and nervous. Awkward but hopeful. That's how 15-year-old David Hinds felt when he met Jamie Stratton about a year ago.

Habitat for Humanity consolidating

By Scott Hewitt June 15, 2014 6 a.m.

The Evergreen Habitat for Humanity office in West Vancouver is packing for a move. So is the Habitat for Humanity Store on East Fourth Plain Boulevard.

Bits 'n' Pieces: Sheepish 'Wolf' re-ups its radio team

By Scott Hewitt June 13, 2014 6 a.m.

Getting fired isn't so rare, especially in the churning world of broadcast media. But getting rehired by a media company that publicly apologizes for its flub is a singular career achievement.

What's up with that? Walls of cyclists blocking faster traffic worry bike club

By Scott Hewitt June 11, 2014 6 a.m.

Why do cyclists sometimes ride two or even three abreast, spilling outside the bike lane, on speedy roads? Are they “making a statement”? Or just clueless?

Vancouver distributes $2 million in housing aid

By Scott Hewitt June 5, 2014 6 a.m.

More than $2 million in federal Housing and Urban Development funds have been allocated by the Vancouver City Council to 20 local projects and programs. Housing agencies, mental health clinics, programs for homeless youth and the city's own housing rehabilitation, small business and infrastructure programs will share the dollars. They have approximately two years to spend the money.

Parks Foundation of Clark County awards $192K in grants

By Scott Hewitt June 3, 2014 7:34 p.m.

Ridgefield kids will swing, East Vancouver grown-ups will work a new fitness circuit, pickleball will hit Washougal and needy children will enjoy fully funded access to Vancouver recreation programs — including swimming lessons, field trips and outdoor sports — thanks to the latest round of community grants from the Parks Foundation of Clark County.

Relocated Hazel Dell food pantry stays busy

By Scott Hewitt June 2, 2014 6 a.m.

Brian Gunderson motored up to the SixEight food pantry on Northwest Ninth Avenue on a scooter, with his dog, Miss Cooter, leading the way. Gunderson, 55, lost one leg decades ago but stopped working only recently.

Clark County abounds with volunteer opportunities for teens

By Scott Hewitt May 30, 2014 6 a.m.

It may be hard for kids to imagine right now, but parents know too well that sweet young dreams of endless summer with nothing to do can turn into a sour reality: Endless summer with nothing to do.

Bits 'n' Pieces: Fiddling love born in utero

By Scott Hewitt May 30, 2014 6 a.m.

Aarun Carter fell in love with the fiddle in utero.

Blind athletes association wins big grant

By Scott Hewitt May 22, 2014 6:08 p.m.

The Northwest Association for Blind Athletes has reached a milestone. The homegrown nonprofit agency, the big vision of legally blind Billy Henry, has been awarded a three-year, $150,000 grant to expand its programs and services.

Tally: 695 homeless people live in Clark County

By Scott Hewitt May 20, 2014 6:42 p.m.

A single-day snapshot of homelessness in Clark County in January found 217 "unsheltered" people living outdoors, in makeshift camps or in cars.

Clergy connect to create change

By Scott Hewitt May 19, 2014 6 a.m.

The second annual prayer breakfast of Clark County's progressive interfaith community focused on local issues and common projects.

Welcome to Vancooler Washington

By Scott Hewitt May 18, 2014 6 a.m.

Hungry for some cosmic consciousness on a September weekend, Portlander Keith Picone ventured north to what he usually called "Vantucky" to check out our 10th annual Peace and Justice Fair.

Bits 'n' Pieces: Bold dream to paint life realized

By Scott Hewitt May 16, 2014 6 a.m.

If you think the life of a painter is all about easy self-expression, inspired masterpieces forming out of nowhere and glamorous openings at fancy art galleries, think again.

Bike Clark County looking for new home

By Scott Hewitt May 15, 2014 6 a.m.

Bicycles may seem to be all about youthful fun and games, but there's a serious reason why Vancouver firefighter-paramedic Eric Giacchino has become a major cycling activist: safety.

Four local parks advocates to get Wager awards

By Scott Hewitt May 14, 2014 5:55 p.m.

Lloyd Halvorsen, Kelly Punteney, Barbara Anderson and Suzanne Grover are all recipients of a 2014 Florence B. Wager Award, given each year by the Parks Foundation to recognize leaders, volunteers and professionals for heroic efforts on behalf of local parks, trails and recreation programs.

Alarm, compassion for Hazel Dell home

By Scott Hewitt May 14, 2014 6 a.m.

Crystel Baye and her family were looking to move up in the world as they stretched their dollars to leave a manufactured home in Orchards and buy a two-story house in West Hazel Dell.