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  • Demolition of County Courthouse parking begins

    Jun 27, 2024

    Demolition of the Columbia County Courthouse parking area got underway last week as contractors literally dug into the work, removing the old pavement in preparation for new. Since this photo was taken, the old parking surface has been removed and loads of gravel delivered to begin the process of laying the base for the new pavement. -Chronicle photo...

  • Injured hiker choppered from remote area of Columbia County

    Jun 27, 2024

    DAYTON–Spokane County's Rescue 3 responded to evacuate an injured hiker from a hilltop near Deadman Peak in a remote area of Columbia County Monday, June 24. Rescue 3 Flight Crews successfully located, treated, and rescued the victim, transporting him to an awaiting ambulance at the Walla Walla Regional Airport. The victim suffered a broken leg and is expected to make a full recovery. The Spokane Regional Air Support Unit (SRASU) received a request from the Columbia County Sheriff's Office to a...

  • New and improved Bluewood planned

    Jun 27, 2024

    DAYTON–Ski Bluewood is in the process of replacing the fixed-grip triple chair, Skyline Express and adding snow making infrastructure over the next two years-2024-25. Bluewood will replace the fixed-grip triple chair, Skyline Express, with a High-Speed detachable Quad. In addition to the replacement of Skyline Express, Bluewood will soon install base area snowmaking infrastructure to address early season snow variability and provide a more predictable opening date each winter. "We couldn't be mo...

  • McMorris Rodgers Responds to Biden Administration's Sham Report on Columbia River System

    Jun 27, 2024

    SPOKANE–Eastern Washington Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers (WA-05) commented on after the Department of the Interior published a report https://www.doi.gov/media/document/tribal-circumstances-analysis) on the "Historic and Ongoing Impacts of Federal Dams on the Columbia River Basin Tribes." "This bad faith report is just the latest in a long list of examples that prove the Biden administration's goal has always been dam breaching. They continue to undermine the honest regional dialogue w...

  • Library directors limit Hotspot lending to individuals

    Melissa Gemmell|Jun 27, 2024

    DAYTON–The Board of Trustees for the Columbia County Library District voted to exclude private businesses from the Hotspot lending, during the June 11 meeting. In addition, minor revisions were made to the Request for Reconsideration of Materials Policy. The finance report was approved. Director Ellen Brigham presented her report for the previous month which included information on the kick-off for the Summer Reading Program. The Board had discussion about the pending concrete work for the r...

  • Free summer lunch program available

    Charlotte Baker|Jun 27, 2024

    DAYTON–The Friends of the Library (FOL) will sponsor a Kids Free Summer Lunch Program served at the local United Methodist Church and Columbia County Rural Library beginning July 1. Youngster between the ages 0-16 are welcome to partake in a free lunch program each Monday, Wednesday, and Friday starting July 1 and ending August 26. The meals will be prepared by hospital kitchen, purchased by FOL, then served free to all those who attend, and must be eaten on site. Monday and Friday at the U...

  • McMorris Rodgers presents Purple Heart to Korean War Veteran from Usk

    Jun 27, 2024

    Usk, Wash.–Eastern Washington Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers (WA-05) presented 94-year-old U.S. Army veteran, Corporal Donald Donner, with the Purple Heart in recognition of the wounds he sustained while courageously fighting in the Korean War at a ceremony here June 20. Cpl. Donner enlisted in the Army in 1948 and was originally stationed in Japan as a radio operator. In 1950, his infantry unit was reassigned to the Korean peninsula, where he sustained multiple bullet wounds to his r...

  • USFS invests over $2.88 million to restore forests

    Jun 27, 2024

    PORTLAND, ORE.–The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Forest Service invests over $2.88 million to fund five Good Neighbor Authority (GNA) projects in the Pacific Northwest for fiscal year 2024. This funding is part of a larger $12 million national investment in GNA projects for the same period. These projects aim to enhance watersheds, restore forest health, and reduce wildfire risks in Washington and Oregon. The funding, made possible by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, allows the Forest S...

  • Dayton man counts a CPR "save"

    Loyal Baker|Jun 27, 2024

    TOPPENISH–Retired well expert Jim Hickam and his wife Amy were returning from medical appointments on the West Side last week when they encountered a dire situation that led to Hickam giving an unconscious man life-saving cardio-pulmonary resuscitation (CPR). Hickam is a Walla Walla-Columbia County Fire District No. 2 commissioner who has been involved with emergency medical services in Columbia County since 1987. The couple were on their way home and decided to get off I-82 at Toppenish for a...

  • Blustery weather doesn't dampen All Wheels Weekend enthusiasm

    Loyal Baker|Jun 20, 2024

    DAYTON–The Friday of All Wheels Weekend's 30th Anniversary celebration started out cool and with gusty winds, which died down for the Friday evening festivities–Drag the Gut, registration and live music on the Columbia County Courthouse Lawn, courtesy of The Frog Hollow Band–giving the weekend's activities a wonderful launch. Saturday morning opened with a freshet to give Show N Shine judges a wax 'n' polish-bead up test (just kidding) so that most of the vintage automobiles and pick ups who w...

  • Vintage Fire Truck from Illinois a highlight

    Loyal Baker|Jun 20, 2024

    DAYTON–In 1938, the roof of Emma Rowley's home at 306 West Madison Street in Elizabeth, Illinois, caused several hundred dollars in damage. But thanks to the Elizabeth Fire Department's brand new truck, the firemen of the day were able to notch a "save." It was the first house fire to be tackled by the department since the truck's arrival in September, 1937. According to an article about that first fire, members of the department were "well pleased with the manner in which it performed." The 1...

  • Council awards printing contract to Chronicle

    Jessica Ruffcorn|Jun 20, 2024

    DAYTON–The City Council heard discussion and awarded the city legal contract; and approved Resolutions 1542, 1545, and 1546 at the June 11 meeting. The City granted the 2024 public notice publishing contract to the Dayton Chronicle, the newspaper of record for Columbia County, after a hearty discussion over requirements and access. The Council awarded the City legal contract to the Dayton Chronicle by a 4-2 vote. Bids were submitted by two area newspapers, Dayton Chronicle, the Columbia C...

  • Commentary

    Jun 20, 2024

    WASHINGTON, D.C.–Eastern Washington Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers (WA-05) remembers former U.S. Representative George Nethercutt, who passed away June 14, 2024. "My heart is sad," McMorris Rodgers said. "George Nethercutt was a giant amongst men who served the people of Eastern Washington with honor and patriotism for a decade. George was a man of character who led with kindness and conviction, and he was a person I proudly looked up to long before the day I was sworn in to represent the...

  • Annual Fourth of July Picnic in the Park

    Charlotte Baker|Jun 20, 2024

    DAYTON–The 4th Annual Fourth of July Picnic in the Park is planned at the Pietrzycki City Park on Thursday, July 4 at 12-4 p.m. This hosted event offers, food, games, silent auction, and a few candidates. Mark your calendars. This year's free family Fourth of July Picnic in the Park, hosted by the Columbia County Republican Central Committee and the Columbia County Conservatives, will offer up hot dogs, watermelon, treats, games, a bounce house with slide, dunk tank, and silent auction. C...

  • State Fire Mobilization authorized for the Neff Road Fire

    Jun 20, 2024

    WALLA WALLA COUNTY–State fire assistance has been mobilized under the Washington State Fire Services Resource Mobilization Plan in support of local firefighters working to contain the Neff Road Fire located in Walla Walla County, near the town of Prescott. Washington State Patrol Chief John Batiste authorized the mobilization of state firefighting resources on June 15, 2024, at 6:15 p.m. at the request of Fire Chief Jim Ruffcorn, Walla Walla North County Fire District. The Neff Road Fire started on June 15, 2024, at approximately 2:22 p.m. This...

  • Fire District responds to Monday evening fire

    Jun 20, 2024

    Columbia County Fire District No. 3 units, along with Department of Natural Resources (DNR) fire fighters, tackled fire estimated to be less than one acre that threatened a home 12 miles from Dayton on the North Touchet Road early Monday evening. The fire, cause of which is under investigation, was aided by gusty wind conditions, and quickly advanced through the underbrush up the hill toward the residence, Fire Chief Jeromy Phinney told the Chronicle. Several fire units responded and quelled...

  • New concessionaires at summers end

    Jessica Ruffcorn|Jun 20, 2024

    DAYTON–The Port of Columbia Board Commissioners were advised of Lyons Ferry Marina concessionaire future succession; and updates on Portway properties, Mainstem Malt grant, CWW Railroad appraisal; and graffiti issue. Lyons Ferry concessionaires Wally and JoAnn Knoufs, plan to retire at the end of this summer which will succeed to Tim and Susan Dewald. "Tim and Susan joined our management team May 1, and we are doing a transition where we are cutting back our hours and they are taking on more a...

  • 30th Annual All Wheels Weekend races into Dayton

    Loyal Baker|Jun 13, 2024

    DAYTON–With summery weather in the forecast, the 30th All Wheels Weekend 2024 Car Show will again roll along Main Street with that activity time-honored by teenagers of all ages–dragging the gut. One of the Dayton Chamber of Commerce's signature events, the car show highlights Father's Day weekend with upwards of 150 entries-machines of all makes and models, according to Chamber Manager Belinda Larson and the All Wheels Weekend Committee. There's activities planned for Friday, Saturday and Sun...

  • Twenty-seven walk at 138th D.H.S. Commencement

    Loyal Baker|Jun 13, 2024

    DAYTON–A full house of family and friends gathered at the Dayton Gym for the 138th commencement of Pietrzycki High School, also known as Dayton High, and heard inspirational addresses by honor graduates, marveled at the scholarships awarded and witnessed one graduate flip over receiving his diploma among the 27 who received high school diplomas here on Saturday, June 8, 2024. Co-Valedictorian Kameryn Tupling congratulated her classmates on their accomplishments, thanked all who gave support, r...

  • D.H.S. Valedictorian and Salutatorian Graduation Speeches

    Jun 13, 2024

    Co-Valedictorian Kamryn Tupling Good afternoon. First of all, I would like to start by giving a special thanks to everyone who helped make this day possible for all of us. Thank you to all the teachers, administrators, staff, coaches, community members, and families, for all of your support. I want to congratulate the Class of 2024 for making it to the end of this chapter in our lives, and what the future holds for all of us. We are here today to celebrate the hard work and dedication we have...

  • Community awards over $115k in scholarships

    Loyal Baker|Jun 13, 2024

    By Loyal Baker DAYTON–Local philanthropically minded individuals and organizations presented scholarship awards exceeding $115,000 to graduating Dayton High School Class of 2024 members and D.H.S. alumni at Scholarship Night at the Fairgrounds Pavilion Thursday, June 6. When university or college scholarships were added, students received a grand total of $870,391 to further their education. Receiving scholarships were: Kameryn Tupling: John Israel, Archer Ranch, Guy and Nyda Prater, Elk D...

  • Waste-processing plant looking to locate locally

    Jessica Ruffcorn|Jun 13, 2024

    DAYTON–The Columbia County Commissioners (BOCC) heard a presentation to put a waste processing plant out at the rock quarry; consideration of the concept of framework pay; potential bear lawsuit; and approved a liquor license. Dave Dressler, who owns and operates Bio-Environmental Resource Recovery International, known as BERRI LLC, transforms hazardous landfill materials into safe, nutrient-rich dirt. According to Dressler they can take food waste, yard clippings, diapers, tires, leather, p...

  • Dayton High School Graduation Saturday

    Jun 6, 2024

    DAYTON–Commencement Exercises for the Dayton High School Class of 2024 are set for 12 noon, Saturday, June 8, in the Dayton Gymnasium, and three honor speakers will give their graduation addresses. There are co-valedictorians in the Class of 2024: Kameryn Tupling and Ashley Essency, and Salutatorian Grace Trump, and each will speak during the ceremony. Kameryn Tupling is the daughter of Ashley and Diego Trevino, and has been quite busy as a Dayton High School student. She counts maintaining a G...

  • Port of Columbia Awarded Funds for Craft Malt Facility

    Jun 6, 2024

    DAYTON–The Port of Columbia has been awarded a $5 million grant and loan package from the Community Economic Revitalization Board (CERB) for construction of a craft malt facility at Blue Mountain Station. The package consists of a $3,750,000 loan and $1,250,000 grant. The committed private partner, Mainstem Malt, will be investing an amount equal or greater than $5 million for this project. This funding will connect to and extend existing infrastructure and construct a 12,000-square-foot b...

  • County Parks and Recreation commissioners mull budget and plans for future levy

    Jessica Ruffcorn|Jun 6, 2024

    DAYTON–During the regular meeting of the Parks and Recreation District on May 30, the commissioners discussed the first draft of the proposed budget and plans to seek voter approval for their first levy. Commissioners Katie Leid and Dianne McKinley put together a preliminary budget for the board to review. The budget accounts for income of approximately$200,000, which would be acquired if voters pass the levy in November for the maximum allowed of $0.20 per thousand dollars of assessed property...

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