Back to profile

Jesse Burkhardt

Stories by Jesse


Penney’s closing leaves emptiness

The news earlier this year that the J.C. Penney store in downtown The Dalles was closing hit employees and customers alike fairly hard, and when the store finally locks its doors at the end of July, it will truly be the end of an era. The Penney’s store at 212 E. Second St. has been a mainstay of the downtown area since 1914, more than a century ago.

July 19, 2017 1:35 p.m. read more..

City OKs paying Civic project debt

The Dalles City Council voted unanimously July 10 to authorize a small outlay to allow the Civic Auditorium to retire a line of credit it had been paying for about seven years. Before the vote, two council members questioned why the issue was not an action item on the agenda, and expressed strong reservations about how the decision was being handled.

July 18, 2017 1:29 p.m. read more..

City OKs changes to marijuana grows

Following a brief presentation from Steve Harris, the city’s planning director, The Dalles City Council voted unanimously Monday to change the city’s marijuana ordinance to boost odor control.

July 12, 2017 2:09 p.m. read more..

City cancels airport operation contracts

The Dalles City Council voted unanimously Monday evening to cancel contracts with two firms managing operations at the Columbia Gorge Regional Airport in Dallesport. Following an executive session in which the mayor and councilors discussed possible litigation, the elected body reconvened in open session to take action regarding the airport.

July 11, 2017 1:29 p.m. read more..

‘Latin Wave’ radio to air Sunday

Events are taking off quite a bit faster than first anticipated for the new Hispanic radio show in town, “La Onda Latina del Gorge,” or “Latin Wave of the Gorge.” The show’s first “recorded live” segment will air this Sunday, July 9, with the broadcast starting at 6 p.m.

July 8, 2017 1:38 p.m. read more..

Managers get Marina ship-shape

If you’ve visited The Dalles Marina in recent weeks, you’ve probably noticed some significant upgrades to the facilities. As of Jan. 1, management of the marina’s community of houseboats was transferred to The Dalles Marina, LLC.

July 7, 2017 1:38 p.m. read more..

Cascade Square gets $4M renovation

A major renovation project is moving along as scheduled at the Cascade Square Shopping Center in the 1400 block of West Sixth Street. Work on the 1970s-era mall, which rosters nearly 20 different businesses, began in April and is expected to wrap up in September.

July 7, 2017 1:19 p.m. read more..

Civic’s ‘Fireside Room’ gets new look

The Fireside Room at The Dalles Civic Auditorium does not look “drab and dreary” any longer. Thanks to a repainting project completed earlier this month, the room has taken on a lively and attractive new persona.

June 30, 2017 1:17 p.m. read more..

City rejects water for pot grow

With a 3-2 vote on Monday evening, The Dalles City Council rejected a request from a property owner outside the city limits who was seeking to tap into the city’s water transmission line.

June 29, 2017 1:20 p.m. read more..

Paddlers take a stand on the river

On May 27, co-owners Kevin and Sherry Perry opened Celilo Paddle Company in Riverfront Park because they wanted to share their love of paddleboarding, which involves standing, lying or kneeling on a paddleboard and navigating with a kayak-style paddle.

June 28, 2017 1:34 p.m. read more..

Home at Last launches kennel project

Home at Last Humane Society of The Dalles is embarking on a major renovation project that the shelter’s dogs are likely to love. “We’re launching a capital campaign to have the main kennel area completely redone,” explained Anita Clason, shelter manager.

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

Library unveils new media room

The Athenaeum — the fancy and unusual name for the innovative new Teen Programming and Digital Media Room at The Dalles-Wasco County Library — is now open for business. At noon on Thursday, approximately 80 people attended a grand opening for the new facility, geared to provide young community members with a place of their own to study, create, and learn.

June 16, 2017 1:41 p.m. read more..

Mosier project denied again

It appears the legal dance over Union Pacific Railroad’s proposed siding project will continue. On Tuesday, the Columbia River Gorge Commission (CRGC) rejected UP’s appeal, thereby denying the railroad’s bid to build an extended railroad siding at Mosier.

June 15, 2017 1:22 p.m. read more..

Spanish radio show fills growing need

There’s a new radio show in town. Local radio personality Eloy Pando launched “La Onda Latina del Gorge,” or “the Latin Wave of the Gorge,” on June 4, and the program will air every Sunday from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

June 14, 2017 1:27 p.m. read more..

City, county team up to battle teen alcohol use

With June graduation ceremonies and the resulting parties cropping up like dandelions in an open field, a team of local officials have joined together to raise awareness of the dangers of use of alcohol and drugs by those under the age of 21.

June 13, 2017 2:06 p.m. read more..

Council calls for joint exec session

After meeting in a special executive session on Monday, June 5, The Dalles City Council called for an unusual three-way closed door session with Klickitat County Board of Commissioners and the Columbia Gorge Regional Airport Board of Directors. The purpose of the session is “to consult with legal counsel concerning current litigation or litigation likely to be filed.”

June 9, 2017 12:39 p.m. read more..

Dallesport wary of tribal housing

About 50 local residents showed up at the Dallesport Community Center Monday evening to discuss a possible housing project that a tribe wants to place on private property. Bill Morris, a member of the Dallesport Community Council, organized the June 5 meeting. He wanted residents to discuss a proposal by the Yakama Nation Housing Authority, which is considering buying a 47.5-acre parcel in Dallesport.

June 9, 2017 12:35 p.m. read more..

New Life Flight hangar finally takes wing

A group of dignitaries picked up their golden shovels Wednesday morning and marked the official groundbreaking for the construction of a new aircraft hangar at the Columbia Gorge Regional Airport in Dallesport.

June 8, 2017 1:26 p.m. read more..

The Dalles gets a beauty lesson

Entrepreneur Kerri Weed wanted to give her students a career they can take anywhere, and when she opened a cosmetology school in The Dalles in March, she began making good on her goal.

June 7, 2017 1:29 p.m. read more..

NORCOR bond failed by 41 votes

The regional jail tax rate measure has been defeated by 41 votes. In final results from the May 16 special election, the tally was 4,211 No votes, 50.2 percent; versus 4,170 Yes votes, 49.8 percent. A total of 8,381 voters were cast.

June 6, 2017 1:11 p.m. read more..

College prepares budget for upcoming year

Columbia Gorge Community College will soon vote on its budget for the upcoming fiscal year, and the new blueprint includes hiring four more faculty members. “Our budget is very similar in size to last year's budget,” said Rick Leibowitz, regional director of CGCC’s Small Business Development Center.

June 2, 2017 12:24 p.m. read more..

Chamber agrees to budget cut

During The Dalles City Council’s May 22 meeting, The Dalles Area Chamber of Commerce officially accepted the city’s proposal to provide 80 percent of what the chamber asked for in its budget for the 2017-18 fiscal year.

June 1, 2017 12:19 p.m. read more..

Hearings to focus on tribal needs

The Dallesport Community Council will sponsor a pair of public input meetings, June 5 and June 19, to discuss two different proposals to create housing and perhaps additional infrastructure for tribal members in the Dallesport area.

May 31, 2017 1 p.m. read more..

Work on Granada Theater gets underway

According to Chuck Gomez, the new owner of the Granada Theater in downtown The Dalles, “a ton of stuff has been happening” at the 1930s-era theater. “The city has been very pleased with our progress,” he added.

May 31, 2017 12:58 p.m. read more..

Pot business future uncertain

The Dalles City Council rejected a proposal Monday to change its new marijuana ordinance to allow stores within 500 feet of each other, rather than adhering to the existing 1,000 foot-buffer.

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

Hawk boys’ tennis squad shows growth

Although The Dalles High School boys tennis team did not advance to the state championship round, head coach Shea MacNab was pleased with the growth the team experienced and sees reason for optimism as the 2017 season comes to an end.

May 19, 2017 1:36 p.m. read more..

City, union ink 3-year deal

The city of The Dalles and Local 503 of the Service Employees International Union have reached agreement on a new collective bargaining agreement.

May 19, 2017 1:23 p.m. read more..

Sunshine Mill: Towers of power

On Memorial Day weekend seven years ago, James and Molli Martin, co-owners of the Sunshine Mill Winery, opened their doors to the public for the first time. “We went in with ‘this might work,’ that’s all we had,” said Molli. “It feels like it was yesterday.”

May 17, 2017 1:38 p.m. read more..

Incumbents out, jail tax goes down

The county’s voters were clearly in a mood to make changes, as all four CGCC incumbents seeking another term were swept out in the May 16 special election. The jail measure, creating a permanent tax rate of 26 cents per $1,000 property valuation, was narrowly losing, down by just 11 votes of approximately 8,450 cast across four counties.

May 17, 2017 1:24 p.m. read more..

Dufur track team shows mettle

Dufur’s track and field team did itself proud on Saturday in district competition held in Moro. At the end of the day’s events, the Dufur Rangers ending up with seven athletes who qualified to advance to the Oregon School Activities Association state championship events at Hayward Field in Eugene on May 18-19.

May 16, 2017 1:27 p.m. read more..

Rowena Loops slide being cleared

The Oregon Department of Transportation is hard at work removing the recent rockslide that occurred just east of the Rowena Crest Overlook between Mosier and Rowena.

May 16, 2017 1:12 p.m. read more..

TD track team members advance to state

It has been a successful two days for members of The Dalles High School track and field team, which has been participating in the district track meet at Hermiston High School field in Hermiston, Wednesday and Thursday. According to TDHS head coach Garth Miller, during the two days of events numerous students qualified to move on to the Oregon State Athletic Association State Championships, which will be held at Hayward Field in Eugene on May 19-20.

May 12, 2017 12:21 p.m. read more..

Three vie for fire district board seat

The Dalles Chronicle interviews the three candidates going against each other for MCFR Position 4. Incumbent board member Crystal Dodge is hoping to win another four-year term, but she is facing two challengers – David Jacobs and Cyndi Vipperman. All three candidates live in The Dalles.

May 12, 2017 12:15 p.m. read more..

City cuts Chamber budget

In a move that caught some members of The Dalles City Council by surprise, officials voted Monday, May 8, to cut 20 percent from the annual funding request by The Dalles Area Chamber of Commerce.

May 12, 2017 11:57 a.m. read more..

Gleaners lose food facility

Windy River Gleaners has been handing out food to area residents from its facility at 3400 Crates Way since 2007, but the doors won’t remain open there much longer. “We found out that the building we currently occupy has been sold, and we need to find a new space,” said Kristen Burke, vice president of the Gleaners. “Everything will have to be moved from the building no later than May 31.”

May 11, 2017 1:19 p.m. read more..

Fire race contested

The competition for two positions on the Mid-Columbia Fire & Rescue (MCFR) Board of Directors has turned hot this year. A total of five candidates stepped forward to vie for two seats on the board, and who ultimately gets the nod will be decided by voters in the upcoming special election on May 16.

May 10, 2017 12:58 p.m. read more..

Councilor files complaint over store

A member of The Dalles City Council has filed a formal complaint with the city, claiming that a local ordinance that prohibits marijuana stores from being within 1,000 feet of each other is not being enforced.

May 10, 2017 12:55 p.m. read more..

Rockslide closes Hwy. 30 near Rowena

You know it’s bad when the Oregon Department of Transportation has to call geologists to inspect the area before cleanup work can even begin at the site of a rockslide. That is the situation on the scenic Rowena Loops stretch of Highway 30, just east of the busy Rowena Crest Viewpoint.

May 9, 2017 1:17 p.m. read more..

Vineyard, orchard supply company opens store in The Dalles

With orchards and vineyards a growing segment of the area’s agricultural economy, a Yakima, Wash.-based company has moved into The Dalles to tap into the expanding market. “Wilson’s is a one-stop solutions provider for commercial orchards and vineyards, offering a full suite of irrigation, planting, development, and harvesting equipment and supplies, as well as irrigation systems designs,” said Joe Perry, chief executive officer of Wilson’s.

May 3, 2017 1:19 p.m. read more..

Governor visits TD to ‘listen’

Gov. Kate Brown came to The Dalles on Friday for a lengthy visit that focused on several of her top priorities as governor — education, agriculture, and economic development. It was Brown’s first visit to The Dalles since taking office in February of 2015.

May 2, 2017 1:09 p.m. read more..

Neighbors upset with transitional housing

Jack and Lois Thienes, a retired couple whose home is at the intersection of 12th Street and Federal, say they and others around the neighborhood were blindsided by the recent purchase of a house that is being turned into a recovery group home.

April 29, 2017 12:37 p.m. read more..

Two seek CGCC board Position 2

Incumbent board member Dr. James R. (Doc) Willcox is asking voters for another four-year term on the Columbia Gorge Community College Board of Education. He is being challenged for the seat by political newcomer Dana A. Campbell, who hopes to bring her voice to the board.

April 27, 2017 1:21 p.m. read more..

Company inks 10-year deal with city

Zayo Group, a communications infrastructure provider, has inked a 10-year deal with the city of The Dalles to “construct, operate, and maintain a fiber-based service facility.”

April 26, 2017 1:40 p.m. read more..

Keller vs. Morgan in race for CGCC Pos. 5

Two candidates are seeking the Position 5 seat: Dr. Ernest Keller, who wants another four-year term, and challenger Kim Morgan, who works as a legal assistant for an attorney in The Dalles. To get an overview of where the candidates stand on key issues, The Chronicle asked them to respond to a series of questions.

April 26, 2017 1:30 p.m. read more..


Information from The Chronicle and our advertisers (Want to add your business to this to this feed?)