I've been enjoying a bag of huckleberries that Walkabout dropped by the office earlier this week. It's my midafternoon treat. I try to limit myself to two handfuls. But sometimes that doesn't work well. Can't get enough of Idaho's state fruit. I notice that someone along 5th Street (near Dave Smith Motors) is selling them for $45 per gallon. That seems like a decent price. Anyone else out there picking huckleberries this year? You can answer that question or start your own thread with this Wild Card …
Two city council members lobbied in July to discontinue the open-container law in Coeur d’Alene. They said there is currently not enough support from the rest of the council to modify the law, but hope that will change in the future. Park visitor Todd Fencl said an ice-cold beer was the only thing missing from his barbecue Tuesday in McEuen Park. “You have a big family reunion, you would want beer. Wouldn’t you?” he said. “If they’re going to build a nice park; they should have an area for that.” Coeur d’Alene City Council member Steve Adams brought the issue to the table after a local company asked for permission to serve beer during so-called,“bike-bus” pub crawls. “I don’t think we should be telling consenting adults where they can have a drink,” Adams said. “If you go to the park right now and there’s folks down there with plastic cups, they probably have alcohol in the cups”/KREM2. More here.
Question: The last thing I want at City Park or McEuen Field is some drunk pounding beers at a family picnic and getting more and more obnoxious as s/he does. It's bad enough to have dogs off-leash in the park (and Tubbs Hill). Anyone?
Kootenai County Fire and Rescue Lt. John Ward gives water to the injured dog that was found in an irrigation ditch at Falls Park in Post Falls on Monday. (Courtesy photo: Post Falls Police Department)
The injured yellow Labrador found motionless in a ditch at Falls Park on Monday would've died without intervention, rescuers said Tuesday. The male dog was spotted by a pair of teenage hikers in a 6-foot-deep part of Corbin Ditch, and rescued by Post Falls Police and Kootenai County Fire and Rescue. As of Tuesday, the dog's owner was unknown. Police have named him “Bridger” in the interim. He was found near Avista Utilities' one-way bridge and the restored Corbin Ditch headgate. “The dog was extremely dehydrated,” Post Falls police Chief Scot Haug said. “I think it would have died had someone not called.” With the rough terrain, KCFR Lt. John Ward said, the dog wouldn't have been able to get out on his own/Brian Walker, Coeur d'Alene Press. More here.
During the recent 7th annual Coeur d’Alene Parks Day celebration at McEuen Park, long-time Coeur d’Alene attorney Scott Reed presented an interesting historical perspective on the downtown park and how it very nearly became the site of a shopping mall back in the 1950s had the public not voted the proposal down. You can read his account here.
This week, Gov. Butch Otter’s office released paperwork on some — but not all — of the Idahoans who applied for two vacant spots on the State Board of Education. The rest of the applications no longer exist, according to the governor’s office. “We have given you all of the applications we have,” Cally Younger, Otter’s associate counsel and the state’s public records ombudsman, said in an email to Idaho Education News Tuesday. “Previous submissions were destroyed because they contain sensitive personal information.” What does the state public records law say about retaining public records? Not much, evidently/Kevin Richert, The EDge. More here.
Question: Should the public have access to these applications for board vacancies?
Erik Bendl and his dog, Nice, walk along M-139, north of Berrien Springs, Mich., as they head toward St. Joseph, Mich., Wednesday. Bendl, 52, began his “Walking the World For Diabetes Awareness” from his home in Louisville, Ky., on June 13 and has been averaging 10 miles each day. In the last six years Bendl has walked in more than 39 states as well as Washington, D.C., with a goal of helping diabetes organizations and encouraging healthy lifestyles through diet and exercise. (AP Photo/The Herald-Palladium, Don Campbell)
Over the last few weeks, I have read the articles and subsequent comments on several police involved incidents that have grabbed the headlines in North Idaho. From the shooting on the 90 in Post Falls, to the “Nicklebag” incident, to the shooting of the Labrador dog near downtown Cd'A, it seems like everyone has an opinion. Unfortunately, many of the opinions are simple hyperbole, and to summarize too many of the comments, the cops are wrong-headed, out of control criminals who we should fear. Really? Is that your experience, or is that a story you are repeating from a “friend?”/retired police captain Allen Huggins, Coeur d'Alene, Coeur d'Alene Press op-ed column. More here.
Question: Do you agree/disagree with former police captain Huggins that commenters, not police, are out of control re: reaction to recent police incidents, including shooting of black labrador Arfee in Coeur d'Alene?
Some 20,000 Kootenai County residents live below poverty level. They don't see doctors or dentists, for fear of the expense. They know the discouragement of having to scrimp for groceries and shoes, let alone something extra like a haircut. This fall, a partnership of local health care providers, schools, churches, nonprofit organizations, government agencies and businesses are working to replace that fear and discouragement with hope. The Day of Hope scheduled for Sept. 6, at the Kootenai County Fairgrounds, will provide guests with everything from free groceries, shoes, haircuts and family portraits, to health screenings and job counseling. It's also a day to be stress-free, as the event will offer opportunities for fun and entertainment for kids and adults. As many as 4,000 guests are expected to be served, and hundreds of volunteers are needed. “No one group could do this alone,” said Rodney Wright, a member of the leadership team. “Here's a chance to consider what we can do if we all work together”/Coeur d'Alene Press. More here.
Question: This sounds like a swell idea to me. Thoughts?
A possible child luring was reported in the area of South Pine Court near Post Falls on Tuesday, according to a press release issued this morning by the Kootenai County Sheriff's Office. It was reported that at around 4 p.m. an unknown male approached a 6-year-old child that was playing in the driveway of a residence. Pine Court is between Ross Point Road and Cedar south of Seltice Way on the east side of Post Falls. The male attempted to lure the child away by asking for help looking for lost kittens and then briefly followed the child in a vehicle, according to the KCSO. The incident was witnessed by the child’s grandmother, who got the child to safety and later notified the KCSO. The suspect is described as an older white male, approximately 50 to 60 years old, with short gray hair and a gray beard or unshaven face. The suspect was driving an older, possibly '80s, compact passenger car. The car was described as having either faded or oxidized “dull” black paint and as having a bad muffler or a modified exhaust. Those with information are urged to contact the KCSO at 446-1300/Coeur d'Alene Press.
Representatives of a production company involved with the TV series “Finding Bigfoot” recently sought approval from Troy officials to shoot footage in the area of Moscow Mountain. The crew is expected to shoot twice overnight and wrap up by the end of the month, said Rhonda Case, Troy city clerk.“Finding Bigfoot” is in its fifth season on Animal Planet. Its premise is “investigating compelling evidence that may prove the existence of the elusive creature,” according to promotional material created by its producers.The crew coming to the area is led by Robert “Sean” Mantooth, a 1995 graduate of Washington State University. He is listed as a producer for the cable television program/Terry Harber, Moscow-Pullman Daily News. More here. (Animal Planet/Daily News photo: Cliff Barackman, Matt Moneymaker, Ranae Holland and James “Bobo” Fay are the crew of “Finding Bigfoot,” a series on Animal Planet)
Question: Why do people believe that Bigfoot exists?
By only halfheartedly embracing Obamacare, Idaho cut the number of people without health insurance by more than 25 percent. How many more people could be helped if state leaders stopped dragging their feet? Consider the case of Washington. Like Idaho, it established its own state-based health insurance exchange, thereby extending federal subsidies low-income families needed to afford coverage. For those hovering at or below the federal poverty line — and therefore unable to afford private insurance — Washington accepted Obamacare's offer to extend Medicaid coverage. Says the Washington Office of the Insurance Commissioner, both steps provided coverage to about 370,000 of Washington's 900,000 uninsured. Prior to Obamacare, Washington's uninsured rate was about 14 percent. Now it's down to 8.65 percent/Marty Trillhaase, Lewiston Tribune. More here.
Question: Do you think its a good thing that Idaho's half-hearted insurance exchange has cut the number of people without health insurance by 25 percent?
Camp No Limits camper Addison Benson, 6, of Laurel, Mont., pulls a counselor around during physical therapy at Camp Cross on Lake Coeur d’Alene on Tuesday. She lost both legs below the knee in a lawn mower accident when she was 3. (SR photo: Kathy Plonka)
While other campers were playing wheelchair basketball inside, avoiding a rare rainy summer day on Lake Coeur d’Alene, 6-year-old Addison Benson ran around outside on her prosthetic legs. For Benson, who lost both her legs in a lawn-mowing accident when she was 3, the four-day camp is a chance to be around other kids who, like her, have lost limbs. “It’s something we look forward to,” said her mom, Andrea Benson. Camp No Limits is a nonprofit organization that provides education, mentorship and support to young people with limb loss and their families. Mary Leighton, an occupational therapist, founded the organization in Maine in 2004 after being inspired by a 2-year-old boy who was missing three limbs/Wilson Criscione, SR. More here. (SR photo by Kathy Plonka: Kaylynn McSmith, 6, of Nevada, shows off her “Nub Buddy” during camp No Limits. Her limb loss is due to congenital amputation)
Question: Kathy's photos show children with amazing courage. Thoughts?
This year's Diamond Cup hydroplane races are dead in the water. They were docked by Kootenai County Sheriff Ben Wolfinger, whose refusal to authorize the water-event permit presented a substantial obstacle to the show going on. We're not at all convinced that Sheriff Wolfinger did the right thing, legally or practically. A greater willingness to work with race organizers might have helped save the day. The fact that Diamond Cup organizers have been awarded every other permit in this arduous process makes the sheriff's refusal appear all the more arbitrary. But a sheriff overstepping his bounds isn't all that sunk this year's Labor Day races. Far from it. The lethal torpedoes were fired by Doug Miller himself/Mike Patrick, Coeur d'Alene Press Editorial Board. More here.
Question: Would you like to see another organization try to make hydroplanes work on Lake Coeur d'Alene?
Did you know Matt Shea (pictured) was an Oath Keeper? Did you know he likes to sit around with other Oath Keepers – self-declared patriots and apocalyptic prophets – and check out night-vision goggles and talk about guns? That he once pulled a gun on an aggressive motorist he thought was targeting him for his work as a legislator, or that he took creepy photos of himself on his election opponent’s property? That his ex-wife, who had a restraining order against him for “assaultive behavior,” once testified that Shea envisioned himself as a future president who would be assassinated? That he anticipates the “inevitable” collapse of the economy, and relishes talk about revolution and preparing for the day when you must “stand up to your government”? You didn’t? Where have you been? Shea’s opponent for a state House seat, Josh Arritola, seems shocked by this old news. He tried to make political hay out of it last week – right as ballots dropped in a primary that both Arritola and Shea will survive. The result was another lively round of Watch Local Republicans Squirm Because They Can’t Say Out Loud What They Can’t Stop Whispering About Matt Shea/Shawn Vestal, SR. More here. (SR file photo)
Question: Do you view Oath Keepers in a positive/negative light?
I beat most of the rain drops this morning as I biked to work. Some sprinkles. But the skies really opened up after I got to work. Now, I'm dry and happy at my usual post in the shotgun seat of the wild ride that we call Huckleberries Online. I had fun last night using the cooler to dispatch 2 or 3 drive-by trolls last night. I love how they squeal and gnash their teeth when the cooler door slams on them. Now for today's Wild Card …
Cleo Whiting of Delta, Colo., clips lavender blossoms on Saturday at the Martha Lane Lavender farm near Sequim, Wash. A dozen lavender farms across eastern Clallam County opened their grounds to visitors during the annual three-day Lavender Weekend, a celebration of all things lavender. (AP Photo/The Peninsula Daily News, Keith Thorpe)
Question: Are you a forest person or a tree person?