Winter weather school closures, delays for Wed, Dec. 19

The following school districts in Columbia County have reported late starts or closures today due to inclement winter weather, according to FlashNews.net:


Winter weather school closures, delays for Tue, Dec. 18

*Updated 8:32 a.m., Dec. 18, 2012*

The following school districts in Columbia County have reported late starts or closures today due to inclement winter weather, according to FlashNews.net:


Christmas Ships return to Columbia County this weekend

The 58th annual parade of Christmas Ships will visit Columbia County on Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 8-9.

The first run will begin at 6 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 8. Ships will assemble at the St. Helens City Docks and sail down the Columbia River to Columbia City, and weather permitting, cross to an RV park on the Washington side before returning to St. Helens, where the ships will dock overnight. The parade lasts for about two hours.

On Sunday, Dec. 9, the ships will depart from the city docks and meet up with additional fleet at 4:30 p.m. at Coon Island, along the Multnomah Channel. The ships will leave the island at 5 p.m., beginning their tour up the channel, through Scappoose, and on to the Willamette River.

Occasionally, weather, debris in the river, and other conditions can cause parade delays or cancellations. In the event of a cancellation, volunteers will update the organization’s Web site at www.christmasships.org.

Information on prime viewing locations also can be found on the site.


News Bits: Local holiday happenings, Dec. 1-3

EVENTS

Reindeer Run: 8 a.m. Sat, Dec. 1; Columbia River Foursquare Church, 555 Commons Drive, St. Helens (across from DMV); 5K, 10K, or half-marathon (run or walk); proceeds benefit Columbia County Toy-n-Joy and the Columbia Food Bank; coffee, cocoa and snacks served in the church before and after race; prizes awarded to top three finishers in each category (male and female); cost $35-$60; includes souvenir Race Tech T-shirt and professional chip timed race; half-marathoners receive a custom Reindeer Run medal;  Route maps, registration information and other details at www.crfoursquare.com/reindeerrun.html; or contact Molly Cooke, 503-396-0357, or molly@crfoursquare.com.

Breakfast with Santa: 8 to 11:30 a.m. Sat, Dec. 1; Columbia County Shrine Building, 315 N. 18th St., St. Helens (off Wyeth Street and Highway 30); breakfast of scrambled eggs, sausage, pancakes, milk, juice, coffee and tea served; bazaar table for Christmas shopping; $3 for ages 4-10, $5 for ages 11 and older; hosted by The Order of the Eastern Star, Mizpah No. 30 Chapter.

30th annual Merchant’s Toy n’ Joy benefit auction: 5 to 8 p.m., dinner; 5 to 6:45 p.m., silent auction; 7 p.m., oral auction, Sat, Dec. 1; Columbia County Fairgrounds Pavilion, 58892 Saulser Road, St. Helens; the event, sponsored by Columbia River Fire & Rescue, celebrates “30 Years of Giving” with a catered dinner and traditional brownie ala mode dessert; $15, tickets available at the door, or by visiting CRF&R administration offices at 270 Columbia Blvd.; 503-397-2990 or www.crfr.com/merchant-s-toy-n-joy.

Rainier Toy n’ Joy Breakfast: 7:30 to 10:30 a.m. Sat, Dec. 1; Rainier United Methodist, 101 C St. East, Rainier; 503-556-3440.

Rainier Christmas tree lighting ceremony: 6 p.m. Sat, Dec. 1; Rainier City Hall, 106 West B St., Rainier; 503-556-7301.

Free photos with Santa: 3 to 5 p.m. Wed, Dec. 5; WorkSource Oregon, 500 N. Hwy 30, Suite 320, St. Helens; visits with Santa and snacks; well-behaved pets welcome; canned food donations accepted; visitors are welcome to bring their own cameras for extra photos; 503-397-4995.

Watts House Museum Christmas tours: 4 to 8 p.m. every Fri-Sun in December, except the week of Christmas, when tours will be offered Fri-Sat only; 52432 S.E. First St., Scappoose; the historic house has been decorated for Christmas by volunteers with the Scappoose Historical Society, and other community groups; free admission; group tours available; 503-961-5621 or www.scappoosehistoricalsociety.org (click on “current event”).

BAZAARS

St. Frederick Catholic Church: 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sat, Dec. 1; 175 S. 14th St., St. Helens; held in Buccini Hall; surprise packages, jams and jellies, arts and crafts, swags, white elephant  and more; light lunch available for purchase; 503-397-0148.

Avamere Assisted Living: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sat., Dec. 1; 2400 Gable Road, St. Helens; visits with Santa from noon to 2 p.m.; first 50 shoppers receive gift; 503-366-8070.

Jingle Jangle Christmas: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sat-Sun, Dec 1-2; private residence, 722 E. 2nd St., Rainier (uphill from Interstate Tavern); benefit for Susan G. Komen for the Cure; free coffee, hot chocolate and cider; credit cards accepted.

Columbia County Mental Health: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Mon, Dec. 3; 58646 McNulty Way, St. Helens; 503-397-5211.


Veteran’s Day ceremonies in south county

Events honoring Veteran’s Day in south Columbia County include:

• Scappoose: 10:30 a.m., Veterans Memorial at Heritage Park, Southeast Second and Olive streets; Bert Key, Veterans of Foreign Wars National Committee Member, will speak; Oregon Army National Guard firing detail, taps played, possible fly-over; sponsored by Scappoose VFW Post 4362; details: Ron Urban, 503-543-7482.

• St. Helens: 10:30 a.m., McCormick Park, 475 S. 18th St.; Terry Maloney, DAR Regent, and Brad Witt, will speak; Gene Hester, Vietnam vet, will be honored; flag rising, POW/MIA tribute, presentation about the meaning of Veteran’s Day, as well as an explanation of the 13 flag folds; those in attendance may bring old flags to be properly retired.


More Halloween fun in south county this weekend

Witches Brew and a Story, Too: 7 to 9 p.m. Sat, Oct. 27; Oak Meadows Inn Best Western or Americas Best Value Inn, both in St. Helens; a Halloween “tuck-in” story-time activity for children offered by staff from St. Helens Public Library; $20 a child, or $30 for two children; proceeds benefit the library; registration required; details: 503-397-4544.

Kids’ pumpkin painting: Noon to 4 p.m. Sat, Oct. 27; Masonic Building, ground floor, 231 S. First St., Old Town St. Helens; costumed volunteers help children can paint Halloween masterpieces on pumpkins; free, although donations of $2 a child is appreciated; proceeds benefit various public art projects in St. Helens; sponsored by the St. Helens Arts and Culture Commission.

Corn maze and pumpkin picking: 9 a.m. to dusk daily through Halloween; Bernet Farms, 51372 Dike Road, Scappoose; pumpkin picking (more than 20 varieties of pumpkins, squash and gourds) kids’ hay maze, hay rides, farm animal “looking” zoo, food and beverage vendors and farmers’ market; haunted corn maze from 7 to 10 p.m. Fri-Sun, Oct. 26-28; details: 971-506-8605, or www.bernetfarms.com.

St. Helens Haunted Tours: Offered every half hour beginning at 7 p.m. Sat, Oct. 27; meet at the gazebo in Columbia View Park, off Strand Street, Old Town; visit old haunts and re-live the secret, spooky and creepy history of St. Helens; presented by Shoestring Community Players; $10; details: 503-366-4406, or www.sscpmusicals.com.

Kiwanis Daybreakers children’s fair: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sat, Oct. 27; St. Helens High School commons, 2375 Gable Road; booths by 28 community agencies, children’s activities, reptile road show, bounce house, face painting, “fishing” for prizes, crafts, performance by St. Helens High School Sound FX choir, dance academy presentations, a visit by Ronald McDonald and more; free; costumes encouraged.

Photos with the ‘Great Pumpkin’: 3 to 6:30 p.m., Sat, Oct. 27; Plaza Park, off First Street, in front of the Historic Courthouse, Old Town St. Helens; children in costume can have their pictures taken before or after the Little Spooks Parade; photos by Curt Davis Photography; small fee charged.

Little Spooks parade: 4:30 p.m., Sat, Oct. 27; children and their parents or guardians gather on the corner of St. Helens and First streets, Old Town St. Helens; parade begins at 5 p.m. Trick or treating at local business merchants will follow.

Little Spooks haunted house: 5:30 to 9 p.m., Sat, Oct. 27; Pythian Building, 215 S. First St., Old Town St. Helens.

Spirit of Halloweentown costume contest: 7 p.m., Sat, Oct. 27; Plaza Park, off First Street, in front of the Historic Courthouse, Old Town St. Helens; winner awarded $1,000 and becomes the Spirit of Halloweentown mayor; no registration required.

Tarot card trunk show and readings: 4 to 7 p.m., Sat, Oct. 27; Word for Word Books and Espresso, 293 S. St., Old Town St. Helens; 503-396-6910.

Tarot card readings: 6 to 9 p.m. Wed, Oct. 31; Klondike Restaurant, 71 Cowlitz St., Old Town St. Helens; 503-366-2634.


Spooky bedtime stories, haunted tours, a pumpkin festival and more featured Saturday in St. Helens and Scappoose

A girl and her mother craft designs on a pumpkin during the first session of the St. Helens Arts and Culture Commission’s kids’ pumpkin painting activity on Oct. 13.
The commission will offer the activity again tomorrow, Oct. 20, from noon to 4 p.m. in the Masonic Building in Old Town St. Helens. Photo courtesy of Michelle Tullock.

South Columbia County is bursting at the seams with events for people of all ages on Saturday, Oct. 20. The list of local offerings include:

Kids’ pumpkin painting: Noon to 4 p.m.; Masonic Building, ground floor, 231 S. First St., Old Town St. Helens; costumed volunteers help children can paint Halloween masterpieces on pumpkins; free, although donations of $2 a child is appreciated; proceeds benefit various public art projects in St. Helens; sponsored by the St. Helens Arts and Culture Commission.

Witches Brew and a Story, Too: 7 to 9 p.m.; Oak Meadows Inn Best Western or Americas Best Value Inn, both in St. Helens; a Halloween “tuck-in” story-time activity for children offered by staff from St. Helens Public Library; $20 a child, or $30 for two children; proceeds benefit the library; registration required; details: 503-397-4544; also offered Oct. 26-27.

Pumpkin Fest: 9 a.m. to dusk; Bernet Farms, 51372 Dike Road, Scappoose; pumpkin picking (more than 20 varieties of pumpkins, squash and gourds) kids’ hay maze, hay rides, farm animal “looking” zoo, pumpkin run, pumpkin games, bouncy castle, live music, food and beverage vendors, farmers’ market, “Find the Golden Pumpkin” contest ($100 prize), and a haunted corn maze from 7 to 10 p.m.; details: 971-506-8605, or www.bernetfarms.com.

St. Helens Haunted Tours: Offered every half hour beginning at 7 p.m.; meet at the gazebo in Columbia View Park, off Strand Street, Old Town; visit old haunts and re-live the secret, spooky and creepy history of St. Helens; presented by Shoestring Community Players; $10; details: 503-366-4406, or www.sscpmusicals.com; also offered Oct. 25-27.

Halloween Cruise/Haunted Boats: All day; city docks, located behind the county courthouse, Old Town St. Helens; presented by Columbia River Yachting Association; details: 253-312-1101; also offered Oct. 21.

Great Pumpkin Lighting: 6 p.m., Plaza Park, Old Town St. Helens.

Dogtoberfest: 3 to 7 p.m.; Columbia Humane Society, 2084 Oregon St., St. Helens; dog Halloween costume contest, games and prizes; bratwurst meal by Dockside Steak & Pasta with cookies by Houlton Bakery ($8), microbrews by Captured by Porches ($3); admission $5; proceeds benefit the shelter; donations of dry dog food, bleach and paper towels for the shelter will be accepted; details: 503-397-4353, or www.columbiahumane.org.

Mystery shopping: Noon-6 p.m.; shop at random businesses in Old Town St. Helens to win one of 10 $50 Target gift cards.

Haunted Hot Rod Cruise-in and Hearse Rally: Noon to 5 p.m., Plaza Square and Strand Street, Old Town St. Helens; dozens of haunted hot rods on display; free.

Fabulous Finds bazaar: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., home of Johneta Johnson, 58972 Ward Drive, St. Helens; Silpada jewelry, PartyLite candles, Watkins, River City Candy Company, holiday centerpieces by j.ann designs, cards by Johneta and Kathy, purses, scarfs and jewelry by Rochelle; details: 503-397-2292.