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Mark Gibson

Stories by Mark



Art of the scam

When Susan Raffensperger got the call from Prestige Student Solutions, she was excited by the possibilities: A career-based interventions coordinator at The Dalles High School, Reffensperger had just started the school year at a new job and was looking into buying a house — and was struggling with a load of school debt and the cost of moving from Bend to a new city.

July 2, 2018 3 p.m. read more..


Students learn to be ‘Internet awesome’

Students at The Dalles Middle School learned Tuesday how to be “Internet awesome” during an Online Safety Roadshow developed by Google. The program has been touring the country for five years and has presented in every state, said team leader Matt Thielen.

June 13, 2018 3 p.m. read more..


From this day forward

The Sherman County Historical Museum has a new display this summer — “From This Day Forward: A Wedding Exhibit — and it’s one that continues to grow. “We invited the community to participate in this exhibit by bringing photos to be placed on the wedding bulletin board,” explained Executive Director Patti Fields.

June 8, 2018 3 p.m. read more..


‘Mass rescue plan’ tested

Rescue helicopters, patrol boats, search and rescue teams, incident response teams, fire engines and ambulances from multiple agencies converged on Riverfront park Wednesday morning as the United States Coast Guard tested the region’s response capabilities to a mass river rescue on the Columbia River. Overlooking the scene from the Fort Dalles Readiness Center was a host of emergency planners in a busy command center.

May 17, 2018 3 p.m. read more..


Starnes eyes big changes

Patrick Starnes, running as an Independent for Oregon governor, thinks every political candidate should spend time on a school board. “As a school board member, you hire and fire teachers, close schools … you really learn the aches and pains of the community,” he said in a recent interview at The Dalles Chronicle.

May 7, 2018 3 p.m. read more..


Pikeminnow fishery opens

The northern pikeminnow bounty fishery opened Monday, May 1, with 324 caught opening day in The Dalles, according to Eric Meyer, who was taking and counting the catch May 2, with over 300 counted by mid-afternoon.

May 3, 2018 3 p.m. read more..


Supporting a ‘Vision of Hope’ and HAVEN

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month and community members can support victims — and enjoy a meal prepared by some of the best chefs in town — by attending “An Evening with HAVEN” April 12, starting at 5:30 p.m., at the Fort Dalles Readiness Center, 402 E. Scenic Drive in The Dalles.

April 10, 2018 3 p.m. read more..


Goldendale rep. joins Farm Bill tour

Rep. Gina McCabe, R-Goldendale, joined U.S. Rep. Dan Newhouse, R-Sunnyside, during the final stop on his “Farm Bill listening tour” in Yakima June 30. The U.S. Farm Bill is comprehensive legislation that sets federal government policies related to agriculture, ranging from farming, to trade and subsidies, to nutrition.

April 3, 2018 3 p.m. read more..


Fire consumes motorhome

A firefighter with Mid-Columbia Fire and Rescue knocks down flames consuming a fully-engulfed motorhome near the corner of J. and 12th Streets in The Dalles Saturday morning at 4 a.m. Firefighters cleared from the scene at 5:45 a.m. Mid-Columbia Fire and Rescue was assisted on scene by Dallesport Fire department crews.

February 3, 2018 5:36 a.m. read more..


Christmas treasure found in Army kettle

The clink of coins dropping into Salvation Army collection kettles during the Christmas season, accompanied by the ringing of the attendant’s bell, are part of the holiday soundscape, but on Dec. 23 bell-ringer Barbara Palmer, stationed at Bi-Mart in The Dalles, received a special “clink” in her bucket: a 1-ounce gold Krugerrand coin. The South African gold coin is valued at about $1,200.

December 27, 2017 12:38 p.m. read more..


New space for birds of prey, visitors

Falcons, hawks, owls and eagles housed in the Raptor Interpretive Program at the Columbia Gorge Discovery will soon have a daytime view of the river — and visitors will have an outdoor view of the birds — with the completion of a new display area at the center Wednesday morning.

October 27, 2017 1:40 p.m. read more..


CGCC begins search for new president

The search for the next president of Columbia Gorge Community College entered a key phase this week with selection of a 17-member search committee by the board of education. The volunteer committee represents various public sectors as well as college students, faculty and staff. CORRECTION: The board voted unanimously to appoint the 17-member committee.

October 13, 2017 1:23 p.m. read more..


Garden brings hugs, smiles

When Karyn Hart set out to revive the neglected gardens around Bent River Restaurant and Schwarbach’s Sports Bar, located along the Riverfront Trail at 1535 Bargeway Road, she had her work cut out for her. “It was pretty dilapidated,” she said.

September 20, 2017 12:40 p.m. read more..


Fires merge, at 32,000 acres

Tall timber contributed to explosive fire behavior Tuesday as the Eagle Creek and Indian Creek fires merged to cover an estimated 32,000 acres, according to a report by Oregon Public Broadcasting this morning. The fire spread approximately 15 miles Sept. 5 and overnight reached downstream of Multnomah Falls.

September 6, 2017 1:21 p.m. read more..


CGCC, Toda part ways

The Columbia Gorge Community College Board of directors and president Dr. Frank Toda signed a “mutually acceptable separation agreement” effective Sept. 29 in a special board session Tuesday evening at The Dalles campus.

August 16, 2017 1:21 p.m. read more..


‘Inventors camp’ challenges youth

Middle school students from around the Mid-Columbia were challenged this week at “Inventor’s Camp,” a hands-on science and technology camp introduced by Oregon State University and hosted by the OSU Extension Service of Wasco County and Columbia Gorge Community College.

August 10, 2017 1:38 p.m. read more..


Art classes for youth spur creativity, build skills

“Tell me about your painting,” says Hood River artist Sarah Starr as a youngster approaches her with a wet canvas during Summer Art Camp at The Dalles Art Center. It’s a question Starr asks frequently, allowing the young artists in her class to show her their work and seek advice, or just more paint, without her making any sort of judgement or assumption about their painting.

August 5, 2017 9:50 a.m. read more..


Children prepare for theatre debut: Shows at 2 and 7 p.m.

A host of local children have been working onstage at The Dalles High School since being selected Monday for a part in the Missoula Children’s Theatre production of “Peter and Wendy,” which opens for audiences tomorrow, June 24, with performances at 2 and 7 p.m.

June 23, 2017 1:24 p.m. read more..


Celebrating ‘The Blues’ on air

Blues radio host Steve “Squrl” Curley will celebrate 25 years broadcasting Squrl’s Blues Review weekly in the Gorge this Friday, May 5, with an open house from 7 to 10 p.m. at Bi-Coastal studios, 719 E. Second Street in The Dalles.

May 4, 2017 1:18 p.m. read more..


Uplifting Elevator project funded

The Uplifting Elevator project at the Mid-Columbia Senior Center has been eight years in the making, work has begun, and the committee overseeing the project has met its $400,000 goal and took down the “fundraising thermometer” on Wednesday.

February 24, 2017 1:40 p.m. read more..


Library offers ‘hotspots’

Patrons of The Dalles Wasco County Library can now check out mobile wi-fi “hotspots,” cellular-based units that allow the user to connect to the internet for free.

February 15, 2017 1:08 p.m. read more..


Young artists display work

The work of area high and middle school artists is on display at The Dalles Art Center, the second of two youth shows this winter, and area residents are encouraged to vote their favorite piece for the “People’s Choice” award.

February 9, 2017 1:23 p.m. read more..
 

Quality, not quantity, gives cannery edge

Instead of trying to market their product based on price, Muirhead Canning Company focuses on quality. “We're selling directly to the consumer. We're selling based on quality, not price or volume. Our product tastes better — we compete with the home canner,” Russel Laughmiller, who purchased the cannery in 2006, explained.

December 22, 2016 12:49 p.m. read more..
 

Restoring history afloat

When Glen Cathers’ wife Naomi asked him what he would choose if he could have anything in the world, he replied, “I want a motor lifeboat.” “Let's do it,” she said.

October 15, 2016 12:58 p.m. read more..


McDonald named ‘Entertainer of the Year’

Jill McDonald of The Dalles, with her husband Thom, have been named as “Entertainers of the Year” by Paint Nite and were recognized at the company’s annual awards gala held in Boston, Mass., last week.

September 21, 2016 2 p.m. read more..


Tech Talks to begin in Oct.

The Dalles Area Chamber of Commerce and Google are launching a first of its kind educational series for the community called “Tech Talk” on Oct. 5. The idea was sparked at this year’s Googlefest at the Fort Dalles Readiness Center, which introduced members of the business, nonprofit and educational community to Google tools and techniques that might benefit their work.

September 15, 2016 2:10 p.m. read more..


The festive business of books

On Saturday, Sept. 10, Klindt’s Booksellers and Stationers hosts its third Northwest Author Festival from noon to 3 p.m. One of three book-related festivals hosted by the store, the festival is rooted in a community need, said Joaquin Perez, co-owner of the bookstore with Kristin Klindt. “We get a lot of local authors throughout the year who want to promote their book,” Perez explained.

September 7, 2016 3:22 p.m. read more..


'Momma’ celebrates Monday

The new owners of Momma Jane’s Pancake House in The Dalles make a great husband-wife team: “Barry (Springer) likes quality food, I pride myself on customer service,” said Kaye Smith.

September 1, 2016 6:34 a.m. read more..


Ricarte to lead TDC

Veteran reporter RaeLynn Ricarte has been named executive editor of The Dalles Chronicle. Ricarte has more than 20 years of experience in journalism and been a reporter and editor in The Dalles since 2010. She has worked for Eagle Media Northwest, the parent company of the Chronicle, for over 16 years. “It’s an honor to announce RaeLynn as executive editor. She’s a tireless worker who has a passion for the news industry, as well as a specific passion for continuing the Chronicle’s success as a news operation,” said Joe Petshow, president of Eagle Media.

August 30, 2016 2:38 p.m. read more..
 

A new, wet world for yoga ─ paddleboarding

Amie DiGennaro has combined her love of standup paddleboarding with her love of yoga, renting boards and teaching classes in The Dalles. “It’s essentially yoga, but instead of a firm mat, you are on the board,” DiGennaro explained.

August 24, 2016 3:13 p.m. read more..


Fire burns truck on Sevenmile Hill Road

A pickup truck hauling a load of hay caught fire as it approached the summit of Seven Mile Hill Road from the east Tuesday afternoon. The fire was reported at 3:30 p.m., and spread to the load of hay and into nearby grass bordering. Twenty acres were burned, and the road was closed for several hours before the fire was extinguished and crews wrapped up around 8 p.m. Crews responding included Mid-Columbia Fire and Rescue, Dallesport Fire Department, U.S. Forest Service, Oregon Department of Forestry and Mosier Fire Department. Scenic Area fire crews were also dispatched.

August 23, 2016 4:53 p.m. read more..
  

History Mystery

The photograph above was scanned from a 4- by 5-inch black and white negative from the archives of The Dalles Chronicle in 1958 — But the negative image of an undated glossy print. The envelope label reads, “Sherar’s Bridge Hotel” in pen, with “House (copy)” added in pencil

August 13, 2016 11:37 a.m. read more..
 

Vintage Dufur Days events

Vintage Dufur Days events kick off Saturday morning, Aug. 13, with a parade down Main Street, Dufur, at 10 a.m. Artisan and food booths and a large Farmer’s Market hosted by Gorge Grown Food Network Saturday and Sunday. Displays and living history at the Dufur Museum all weekend, located across Main Street from the field events. These include a spinning demonstration and quilt show sponsored by the Columbia Fiber Guild, narrated tours of the blacksmith shop once used by Everett Metzentine and other displays.

August 6, 2016 1:44 p.m. read more..
  

Chronicle award list

The Dalles Chronicle netted seven awards in the 2016 Oregon Better Newspaper Contest for articles, editorials and graphics that were published last year. Reporter Neita Cecil received second place in the Best Enterprise Reporting category for a series of five stories in October and November written about the plight of a homeless mother and her five children. The articles unfolded as events occurred, including the removal of the children from motel room after the mother was arrested for a warrant involving methamphetamine use. The children, who were unable to attend school because of their situation, were sent to live with their father in Yakima.

July 26, 2016 2:45 p.m. read more..


Bodies of two missing men found in Mt. Hood National Forest

The bodies of two men from Kentucky were found Thursday evening, July 23, off the Dog River Trail, south of Parkdale. Evidence suggests the pair died in a murder/suicide, according to information provided by the Hood River County Sheriff. The trail is accessed off the east side of Highway 35 in the Mount Hood National Forest.

July 23, 2016 5:23 a.m. read more..


An unexpected party

The Bram Bratá Steel Band performed a free concert at The Dalles Civic Auditorium Wednesday noon hosted by The Dalles Rotary Club.

July 22, 2016 5:17 a.m. read more..


Gamez joins CGCC board

J. Carmen Gamez, horticulture manager for Orchard View Farms, was sworn in to serve on the Columbia Gorge Community College Board of Education Tuesday. He will replace M.D. Van Valkenbergh, who retired from the board in June. Gamez, 52, first came to The Dalles from California in 1972 when he was a boy. He attended the migrant education program for two years, and began working as a picker for Omeg Orchard as a teenager.

July 15, 2016 3:52 p.m. read more..
 

Scoopy Doo takes on dog doody

If you own a dog, there is at least one chore you likely don’t care for: Cleaning up your yard or kennel and disposing of the feces. Molly Blatz and Robert Weems are counting on the squeamishness of most dog owners when faced with that particular chore, and hope the distasteful task will fall to Scoopy Doo Mobile Service, their new dog feces removal service.

July 6, 2016 2:13 p.m. read more..


Fire threatend homes; fawn rescued

FINAL UPDATE One fire fighter sustained a minor injury Thursday from a bee sting and a spotted deer fawn was rescued from the fire area a turned over to Rowena Wildlife of Mosier. No homes were destroyed, and 8 to 10 homes were threatened. One tractor and two disc machines were destroyed in the fire. UPDATED 5:15 a.m. Friday A swift moving wildfire is burning east of The Dalles, and threatens homes in the Moody Road area, west of the Deschutes River. Celilo Village and Heritage Landing east of The Dalles were evacuated, according to Stan Hinatsu of the U.S. Forest Service.

July 2, 2016 1:36 p.m. read more..


Seeking a way forward

Sitting in the shade of a small migrant labor housing unit near The Dalles, John Jessup of White Salmon chats in Spanish with cherry picker Francisco Tamayo of Yuba City, Calif., as he relaxes after a long, hot day working in the orchards.

July 1, 2016 4:58 p.m. read more..


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