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Huckleberries Online

Huckleberry Stains Source Of Pride

After a two-year hiatus from picking, I recently returned from a huckleberry excursion to the Metaline Falls area. The seat of my jeans was stained purple, I smelled like DEET, I was sunburned and I was so stiff I could barely make it out of the vehicle. I had spent $45 on gas and the truck needed washing, if not repainting. But I had huckleberry butt and a gallon of hard-earned huckleberries – the day was a success! Huckleberry stains are among the worst ever, soaking through jeans and even underwear, but they are an indication of a successful day picking. These butt stains are not as impressive as a tattoo of a three-headed, fire-breathing serpent wrapped around a sailing ship, of course, but they are worn proudly and last about a week. On bare skin, they create an interesting purple pattern that looks like a massive hematoma/Alan Liere, SR. More here. (SR illustration: Molly Quinn)

Question: Have you ever had huckleberry butt?

Prosecutor Clears School Trustees

The Kootenai County Prosecutor's Office has determined that school board members in Coeur d'Alene did not violate the state's open meeting law. An investigation into a possible violation was initiated last spring in response to a March 27 complaint lodged with the prosecutor's office by citizen Mary Jo Finney. Finney, of Coeur d'Alene, alleged that school trustees Tom Hearn, Christa Hazel and Dave Eubanks broke the state law which prohibits the formation of public policy in secret. In a June 6 letter to Finney, acquired by The Press through a public records request, Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Bryant Bushling wrote, “…your input is appreciated and the issues that you raised are legitimate concerns. However, based on a thorough review of the available evidence, it cannot be shown that a violation of the open meeting law occurred.” Bushling advised Finney that his office reviewed hundreds of emails and portions of recordings of four school board meetings/Maureen Dolan, Coeur d'Alene Press. More here.

Question: Am I the only one who thinks this investigation was a silly waste of time?

Good Cop, Pathetic Cop

Michael Ramirez/Investor's Business Daily

Hump Day Wild Card — 7.23.14

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 …

Parting Shot — 7.23.14

An Australian athlete does a handstand as she arrives with her teammates during the opening ceremony for the Commonwealth Games 2014 in Glasgow, Scotland, earlier today. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)

Comment Of Day — Ron Burgundy

Ron Burgundy (RE: Idaho no dumping ground — Otter): This can only mean one thing. Butch has seen private polls that show Balukoff far too close for comfort so he is in full campaign mode and trying to encourage some tea partiers back into his fold. It is sad to watch when an old man starts dumping his principles in order to cling to office.

Question: Do you think Gov. Otter is running scared?

PM Scanner Traffic — 7.23.14

  • 5:26 p.m. Minor injury reported from falling tree @ RV Park store/Silverwood.
  • 5:23 p.m. Dispatcher reports things are clearing up & sends officer to check on utility problem at Abbott/Chilco.
  • 5:14 p.m. Silverwood employees have gone through RV Park — and determined no injuries as result of falling trees.
  • 5:08 p.m. Responder reports tree on power wires @ 405 Buttercup/CdA — and told 25 priorities ahead of him.
  • 5:07 p.m. A tree is down across both lanes of traffic on Perimeter Road, north of traffic circle, Bayview-Athol.
  • 5:05 p.m. Utility problems @ Lintzy/Parks, Athol, and at Ohio Match/Pope, Athol.
  • 5:03 p.m. A tree has fallen across BNSF tracks, north of Ohio Match Road.
  • 5:01 p.m. Several trees have fallen on trailers in RV Park @ Silverwood/Athol, trapping several people inside.
  • 5 p.m. Dispatch reports that some individuals are trapped in mobile homes in northern Kootenai County.
  • 4:59 p.m. A utility problem is reported @ Lewellen Creek Road/H54, Athol.
  • 4:57 p.m. Utility problems reported @ H95/Brunner, Athol, and Hanley/Valley, Dalton Gardens.
  • 4:52 p.m. Response from Kootenai Fire delayed b/c can't get garage door open as a result of loss of power.
  • 4:51 p.m. Big tree is down over power lines @ H95/Garwood Road.
  • 4:48 p.m. Traffic lights are out in all directions @ H95/Garwood Road.
  • 4:43 p.m. Someone is suffering chest pain @ Old Highway 95/Garwood Road.
  • 4:34 p.m. Officer reports 2 transformers have blown @ Kathleen/Govt Way, CdA; dispatcher responds that transformers also has blown @ Cosgrove, Sherman Avenue, knocking out lights?
  • 4:31 p.m. CPD officer reports: It's raining buckets @ H95/Ironwood Drive/CdA.
  • 12 more items + AM Scanner Traffic below

Coeur d’Alene Symphony’s Schedule

The Coeur d’Alene Symphony is excited to announce our 2014-2015 season…seven exciting events, including our free concert in Coeur d’Alene City Park on Labor Day. The Symphony’s five regular season performances will be at The Salvation Army Kroc Center Worship and Performing Arts Theater on Golf Course Road in Coeur d’alene.  Each concert will be presented twice, on Friday evening at 7:30, and again as a Saturday matinee at 2.

  • October 10 & 11:  Rossini’s “Thieving Magpie Overture”; Mozart’s “Symphonie Concertante”, featuring Concertmaster Dr. Phillip Baldwin and Principal Violist Jay Prior; Dvorak’s “Symphony #8.”
  • December 5 & 6:  “Christmas At The Kroc” with Tchaikovsky’s “Suite #3” and a whole lot of Holiday favorites.
  • January 23 & 24:  “Family Fun at the Symphony”  It’s Movie Night, and kids under 18 are free with a paid adult, thanks to a grant from Kootenai Electric Cooperative.
  • March 13 & 14:  “National Young Artists Competition Winners”  Seven amazing young artists from around the country, winners of our competition in January, will perform with the Orchestra.
  • May 1 & 2:  The Symphony’s regular season finale includes Brahms’ monumental 2nd Symphony…and a special performance by a soloist to be announced. More here.

Question: Are you a supporter of the Coeur d'Alene Symphony?

Poll: City Failed On Dog Shooting

Online voters (to a Coeur d'Alene Press poll) left no doubt about their assessment of the recent dog shooting by a police officer. Asked, “Are you satisfied with Coeur d'Alene's handling of the dog shooting?”, here's how readers on responded:

  • Yes, 153 votes (10 percent)
  • No, 1,327 votes (86 percent)
  • No opinion, 67 votes (4 percent)

KCSD Offers New Online Reporting

Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office now provides a new online reporting option for the public. This web based reporting system will allow the public to file certain types of incidences (Lost Property, Scam Calls, Crime Tips and Traffic Concerns) over the internet at their convenience. The Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office expects this internet based reporting service to be very popular among citizens who have come to expect services to be provided immediately and conveniently online/Gary Shults, Kootenai County Sheriff's Department. More here.

Question: Good move by the sheriff?

Severe Thunderstorm Hits Region

Severe thunderstorm warnings were issued at 4 p.m. for Spokane and areas to the north as well as North Idaho south of Coeur d’Alene. The warnings are part of a broader swath of severe storms extending from southeast Washington into the fire zones of Central Washington. Sustained winds of 50 to 70 mph were reported from the storm that moved west of downtown Spokane along the West Plains just after 4 p.m. Emergency crews were responding to what so far have been small ground fires. Downed power lines as well as trees and branches are being reported. One tree was reported down on North Wall Street. Avista Corp. reported that 8,800 customers were without power in north Spokane, Colville and Palouse. That number quickly swelled to 16,000 customers without power/Mike Prager, SR. More here.

Question: What is happening in your neck of the INW woods?

HBO Blogosphere — 7.23.14

“Bill has been telling me for about two years now about his favorite fishing partner,” posts Marianne Love/Slight Detour. “She’s this good lookin’ gal, whom he takes up to Grouse Creek with him on his Tuesday night outings.” More here.

HucksOnline numbers (for Tuesday, July 22): 8146 page-views/4975 unique views

Poll: Idahoans Oppose Online Taxes

The National Taxpayers Union says it’s conducted a poll in Idaho that shows Idahoans oppose taxes on online sales, with questions such as, “Please tell me if you agree or disagree with the following statement. Out-of-state tax collectors, such as those from the state of New York, should not gain new power to audit and take into New York courts, online retailers who operate from Idaho. Do you strongly agree/disagree with it, or just somewhat agree/disagree with it?” Fifty-seven percent of respondents said they agreed. But the debate in Idaho has been about national and out-of-state retailers selling their products in Idaho without collecting Idaho’s sales tax – putting local retailers at a price disadvantage. “Currently, a legal loophole, created before the Internet even existed, is encouraging customers to make purchases from online out-of-state retailers so they can avoid paying sales tax,” said Pat Nagel, owner of Idaho Camera and a member of the Idaho Retailers Association/Betsy Russell, Eye on Boise. More here.

Question: We oppose online taxes, but is it fair to give out-of-state and national companies an advantage of 6% over Idaho retailers?

Ted Nugent Facing More Cancellations

Rocker Ted Nugent, it appears, is going to have a more difficult time booking shows at American Indian casinos after a North Idaho tribe’s decision this week to cancel an appearance because of his “history of racist and hate-filled remarks.” The focus of the growing issue is not Nugent’s constitutionally guaranteed right of free speech, but why American Indians – the targets of racial animus for centuries – would host a performer whose on-stage antics are riddled with racism. The Coeur d’Alene Tribe of American Indians cancelled Nugent’s August 4 appearance at its casino after being asked by Hatewatch on Monday how such a performance squared with the tribe’s remarkable history of involvement in human rights causes. Nugent lashed out following the announcement, saying those responsible for cancelling his show were “unclean vermin,” Gannett Wisconsin Media reports/Bill Morlin, HateWatch. More here. (Photo from Ted Nugent Facebook page)

Question: Are you surprised that American Indian Country is taking a second look re: booking concerts with controversial rocker Ted Nugent?

Plant Life

A new Facebook post by, entitled simply: “Plant Life.” Sorta reminds me of that new piece of public art at McEuen Park.

Me Hatesss McEuen Park

Overheard: A woman with a momentarily lost child complaining to a city worker near the tennis/pickleball courts at McEuen Park at about 12:40 p.m. today: “I hate McEuen Park. It's too big.” She had lost sight of her child because there were so many people using the park. She plans to voice her complaint to as many people who will listen.

SR News Quiz — 7.20-25.2014

Two movie tickets to area cinemas and a $50 gift card to the Davenport Hotel are up for grabs in this week's news quiz. Test your knowledge of current events and put yourself in the running Friday's drawings. You can take the test here.

  • Answer to Question No. 1: 75%.
  • Leaderboard: Only 2 Merry Hucksters are among 28 finalists in weekly News Quiz — Sibulsky & SFredrickson. You have until 5 p.m. Friday to enter contest.

TeeHee Shirt Message

On a boater in a yellow T-shirt emerging onto the boardwalk from the Coeur d'Alene Resort marina about 12:30 p.m. today: “There are two types of people: The haves & the have yachts” (complete with a photo of his ha-huge boat moored nearby).

Huckleberries Hears …

That the resolution to require a “loyalty oath” to the Idaho GOPlatform from candidates running as Republicans for office was withdrawn by sponsor Toby Schindelbeck at the local GOP meeting last night. The proposal, which at least one precinct committeeman referred to as the “Lynch Luke” resolution, called for candidates responding to an official party query re: their stand on the state party platform. In the 2014 GOPrimary, state Rep. Luke Malek (Schindelbeck's opponent) was the only local Republican legislative candidate who refused to respond to the questionnaire. In other words, Malek is the only candidate of whom the resolution would apply. The Idaho GOPlatform includes the goofy notion that the 17th amendment, which calls for direct election of U.S. senators by citizens, should be repealed. Schindelbeck withdrew the resolution at the request of John Cross. You can read the resolution in its entirety here.

Question: Would you be more/less likely to vote for a candidate who entirely supported the Idaho GOP platform?

Idaho No Dumping Ground — Otter

Idaho Gov. Butch Otter fired off a letter to top federal officials Wednesday declaring that he wants “to immediately eliminate the chance of the federal government using Idaho as a destination or a staging area for the influx of unaccompanied and illegal immigrants entering the United States through our southern border.” Idaho — which borders Canada, not Mexico –- had not been targeted for any such use. But Otter’s spokesman said, “The governor felt it was important to act preemptively.” A second-term Republican who is up for re-election, Otter wrote to U.S. Health & Human Services Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services director Leon Rodriguez; he copied his letter to Idaho’s all-GOP congressional delegation/Betsy Russell, SR. More here.

Question: Do you share Gov. Otter's feelings re: using Idaho as a staging area for an “influx of unaccompanied and illegal immigrants”?

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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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