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Snow Slow To Show This Ski Season

In the past five years, Schweitzer Mountain Resort in North Idaho has invested about $1 million in upgrading its elaborate system for making artificial snow. This year, the investment is paying off big time. Schweitzer has been able to stay open – although on limited runs – and fulfill expectations of resort guests. “It’s worth its weight in gold,” said Sean Mirus, marketing director at the all-season resort near Sandpoint. Across the Pacific Northwest, a series of mild storms and unusually warm temperatures has all but erased early season snowfall and left three Inland Northwest ski areas idle as the lucrative holiday season approaches/Mike Prager, SR. More here. (SR photo by Kathy Plonka: Skiers and snowboarders dodge weeds and bare spots at Schweitzer Mountain Resort on Wednesday)

Question: Have you tried to ski this year?

Book Explains Patsy Clark’s Success

John Richards is the great-grandson of Patsy Clark, Spokane’s famed mining magnate. A couple of years ago Richards realized that he knew little about Clark. Richards stands in front of the Patsy Clark Mansion at 2208 W. Second Ave. in Spokane. (SR photo: Dan Pelle)

You can speculate until the crows fly home as to how a flat-broke, uneducated Irish bloke like Patsy Clark came to America and wound up owning gold mines and living in Spokane’s best-looking mansion. That said, John Richards believes one telling glimpse into the historic figure’s superhuman drive to succeed can be seen in something he did long before striking it rich. The year was 1876. Clark was laboring at a mine in Utah. Mining tycoon Marcus Daly, who had taken a liking to Clark, told him a job was waiting for him in Butte. All the young man had to do is get there. And so Clark, likely joined by his brother, started walking/Doug Clark, SR. More here.

Question: Am I the only one who remembers fondly those Sunday brunches at Patsy Clark's mansion?

Mack Advocates County Takeover

Richard Mack, a former featured speaker at the Kootenai County Republican Lincoln Day Dinner, is advocating the peaceful takeover of an Arizona county as a laboratory text for Far Right ideas. According to Travis Gettys of Raw Story, Mack told a rally of pro-gun and anti-government activists that establishing “constitutional counties” was the last “peaceful” option to defend freedom from tyranny. Quoth: “I want you to carefully, prayerfully consider moving there with me, and I’m serious,” Mack said Saturday at the “I Will Not Comply” gun rally in Olympia, Washington. “You want to live in a free county? You want to live by constitutional law? You want to not be worried about federal government coming in and ruining your lives and families and hauling you off at midnight? Come live with us there.” More here.

H/T: Sam Crawford

Question: What do you think of Mack's proposed experiment?

The Cure

Signe Wilkinson/Philadelphia Inquirer

Hump Day Wild Card — 12.17.14

Huzzah. We can now arm ourselves to the teeth to watch the 2015 Coeur d'Alene Fourth of July Parade, thanks to uber-con Councilman Steve Adams and the unanimous vote of the Coeur d'Alene City Council. I suspect that most city residents opposed the change. But the noisy minority has spoken. So be it. Here's your Wednesday Wild Card …

Parting Shot — 12.17.14

Sylvia Iriondo, with Mothers Against Repression, makes a  fist as she speaks during a news conference along with representatives of Assembly of the Cuban Resistance and the Cuban National Civic Resistance Front earlier today in Doral, Fla. President Barack Obama secretly arranged prisoner exchanges with Cuban leader Raul Castro as part of an effort to normalize relations. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)

What’s On Your Desktop?

JDanMike: My desktop pic is of my son topside on the sub he is on, cigar hangin' to the side (with wide) grin. my wife's employer asked if it was Cuban — he was in florida at the time — his reply was — “No, Panamanian (wink wink)!!

Question: What photo is on your desk top?

22YO Gets Prison In Spirit Lake Death

A Post Falls man was sentenced Wednesday to 10 years in prison for the 2012 death of a teenager who drowned in Spirit Lake. Dylan P. Paschall, 22, had been charged with second-degree murder for his involvement in Luke Anana-Kuewa’s death but pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter. First District Judge Fred Gibler gave Paschall four years fixed and six years indeterminate, with credit for 452 days he already served in jail. Paschall will spend at least 33 and a half months in prison. Investigators said Anana-Kuewa had been beaten, choked, smothered and left in the frigid water of the lake’s mill pond on the evening of March 24, 2012. More below

Top Comments — 12.17.14

Top Comment — OtisG Experience (RE: Buying Cuban cigars): “If I had hypothetically smoked a Cuban with someone recently, I'd theoretically say it was barely less crappy than other cigars. I actually like the idea of smoking a cigar… but I've yet to have an enjoyable experience doing it. And I used to be a regular cigarette smoker.”

Most Commented Stories — Coeur d'Alene OKs guns at parades (18 comments), and: Search: No drugs at Post Falls High (16 comments), and: Otter: Court should hear Idaho case (14 comments), and: Oregon 2nd most humble state (10 comments).

Cutline Contest — 12.17.14

Time 2 Vote (need more entries, too) …

A man dressed as Santa Claus looks at Monaco Chief of staff Luc Fringant, left, and an unidentified Monaco's military officer during the traditional Christmas tree viewing and present receiving session at Monaco palace Wednesday. You write the cutline. (AP Photo/Lionel Cironneau)

Tuesday Photo: DFO, with 19 likes: “A Green Bay Packers fan indulges himself in a little whine to go with his cheesehead,” and Runnerup: Fort Boise, with 13 likes: “Packers fans got the wrong kind of wedgie in Buffalo.” You can see Tuesday photo and all Cutline Contest entries here.

PM Scanner Traffic — 12.17.14

  • 5:22 p.m. ISP officer reports large, disabled block truck parked @ e/b I-90/Mullan Trail, CdA.
  • 5:14 p.m. 6YO left in running vehicle in park lot of Ross Dress for Less, 225 W. Canfield Ave/CdA.
  • 5:11 p.m. Post Falls school counselor reports depressed teen threatening to stab himself to death.
  • 4:55 p.m. Coeur d'Alene Police Dept activities report for Dec. 16-17 here.
  • 4:49 p.m. Unwanted person reported at home in 8600 block of Penguin Court/Harrison.
  • 4:39 p.m. Undisclosed medical emergency @ 1800 block of Yorkshire Ave/CdA.
  • 4:34 p.m. Hit-and-run crash reported in parking lot of Coeur d'Alene Inn, 1606 W. Appleway/CdA.
  • 4:30 p.m. Motorist reports engine smoking after hitting deer, unknown location.
  • 4:21 p.m. 15YO female banging head into wall @ Kyler/Reed, Hayden.
  • 4:18 p.m. Female driver suffers back pain in rear-end crash @ Miles/H95, Hayden, taken by ambulance to hospital.
  • 4:01 p.m. Intersection of Ramsey/Diagonal roads blocked @ railroad tracks, unknown reason.
  • 13 more items + AM Scanner Traffic link below

PM Headlines — 12.17.14

Skiers and snowboarders dodged weeds and bare ground at Schweitzer Mountain on Wednesday. It's been a slow start to the ski season, but the next big storm looks warm and wet with snow levels rising to ski lodges or higher. (SR photo: Kathy Plonka)

Wanted: Dewey Allen Howard

The North Idaho Violent Crimes Task Force (NIVCTF) is seeking information leading to the apprehension of Dewey Allen Howard. Howard is being sought based on an Idaho State Correctional warrant charging Howard with felony parole violations. Howard is on parole for a 2005 injury to child offense. This is a no bond warrant with Western United States extradition. Howard, 28, is a white male, 5-7 tall, 175 lbs, with blue eyes and red hair. Howard was last known to be living in Post Falls. Anyone with information regarding this subject or other fugitives being sought for violent crimes should call the NIVCTF at 208-665-4455. More on CPD Facebook site here.

Scam Alert

Coeur d'Alene Police Department Facebooks: A female employee who works at a local business received a call on its business line today. The male caller identified himself as “David Brown from the Coeur d'Alene City Water Department.” He told the employee that the city was prepared to shut off the water to the business at 202 W Ironwood Drive and had sent a shut off notice two weeks ago. The employee explained the business was no longer located at that address, and the caller hung up. More here.

HucksOnline Blogos — 12.17.14

Coeur d'Alene Today's announcement: “Congratulations to Mark Dotson and Bryan Varney, winners of the city’s photo contest. Mark won the People's Choice award for his picture (above) of a sunset taken from the balcony of his residence on the sixth floor of The Lofts downtown. The other winner’s photo, taken by Bryan Varney, was selected by employees at City Hall. It is of the Allium Spring Chorus public art at McEuen Park.” More here.

HucksOnline numbers (for Tuesday, Dec. 16): 8655 page-views/5676 unique views

Sony Cancels Release Of ‘Interview’

James Franco, center left, as Dave, and Seth Rogen as Aaron, are shown in a scene from Columbia Pictures' “The Interview.” (AP Photo/Columbia Pictures — Sony, Ed Araquel)

With movie theater chains deciding not screen The Interview, Sony has decided not to release the movie on Christmas as planned. “We are deeply saddened at this brazen effort to suppress the distribution of a movie, and in the process do damage to our company, our employees, and the American public,” Sony said in a statement. “We stand by our filmmakers and their right to free expression and are extremely disappointed by this outcome. Exhibitors, including AMC and Regal, chose not to show the film following a threat claiming to be from Sony hackers Guardians of Peace that invoked 9/11. The film finds James Franco and Seth Rogen playing a television host and producer recruited to assassinate Kim Jong-un/Esther Zuckerman, Entertainment Weekly. More here.

Question: Have you been following this story? Thoughts?

Jury Rejects ‘Stand Your Ground’

A Montana man who shot and killed a German exchange student caught trespassing in his garage was convicted of deliberate homicide Wednesday in a case that attracted attention as a test of “stand your ground” laws that govern the use of deadly force to defend life and property. Cheers erupted in the packed courtroom when the verdict was read in the case against Markus Kaarma, 30, of Missoula. Kaarma shot 17-year-old high school student Diren Dede in the early hours of April 27 after being alerted to an intruder by motion sensors. Witnesses testified Kaarma fired four shotgun blasts at Dede, who was unarmed/AP. More here. (Missoulian/AP file photo: Flanked by his defense attorneys Brian Smith, left, and Paul Ryan, right, Markus Kaarma listens to testimony Dec. 8)

Thoughts?

Not Everyone’s Happy

Anti-Castro protester Don Hernandez chants anti-Obama slogans in the Little Havana area of Miami on Wednesday. Hernandez expresses his disagreement with a surprise move announced by senior Obama administration officials that could pave the way for a major shift in U.S. policy toward the communist island nation. (AP Photo/Alan Diaz)

I Love A Parade

Happy music and marching
stretching block after block,
but what fun's a parade
without your .380 Glock?

The Bard of Sherman Avenue

USA Today ♥s Parade Gun Story

Coeur d'Alene's decision to unanimously embrace gun presence at city parades and public events hasn't escaped the notice of USA Today. Story here.

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About this blog

D.F. Oliveria is a columnist and blogger for The Spokesman-Review. Print Huckleberries is a past winner of the Herb Caen Memorial Column contest by the National Association of Newspaper Columnists. The Readership Institute of Northwestern University cited this blog as a good example of online community journalism.

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