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Huckleberries Best of Idaho — 8/10/07

Joe Jaszewski/AP Photo, Idaho Statesman

U.S. Secretary of the Interior Dirk Kempthorne observes the smoke-filled mountains north of Boise outside of Garden Valley Thursday, as the Middle-Fork Complex fire burns nearby. Story here.

1. Sandpoint could be a college town by this time in 2009. Coldwater Creek founder Dennis Pence, through his foundation, has expanded the amount he's willing to spend to see that happen – from $26 million to at least $36 million, according to the agreement approved by the Idaho State Board of Education on Thursday night here.

2. The statement made by Congress Bill Sali about a Muslim congressman from Minnesota and Hindu prayer in the Senate continues to make waves. It landed on the front page of the liberal Daily Kos here. Randy Stapilus/Ridenbaugh Press and Red State Rebels discussed it here and here. Betsy Russell/Eye on Boise provides a Sali clarification here.

3. Online Poll: 71% of 698 respondents to an Idaho Statesman poll say they'd sell the ball that Barry Bonds hit for record-breaking HR No. 756, if they'd caught it.

4. News Roundup: Many oppose Boulder-White Clouds wilderness here, NI school district sued here, Idaho deaf, blind school closure on hold here, Growing Idaho Hispanic population concentrating in cities here, and Boise grade school to require uniforms here.

5. IMHO: Idaho Statesman (Lawmakers should pursue tax reform), Jim Fisher/Lewiston Tribune (It shouldn't take bridge collapse to do one's duty), Kevin Richert/Idaho Statesman (Has Kempthorne found dream job?), Brian Murphy/Idaho Statesman (Bronco nation should embrace China trip), and Tyler Wilson/Coeur d'Alene Press (Art of wakeboarding).

6. Idaho Blogs: Adam's Blog (Simpson: Idaho's anti-reform congressman), Mountain Goat Report (Help save Yellowstone), Bubblehead (Saying goodbye to LDS leader Faust), Clayton Cramer's Blog (Idaho: It's not California), IdaBlue (Only Christians in Congress or America's doomed), and Rocky Barker (Flying through August fires).

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Huckleberries Online

D.F. Oliveria started Huckleberries Online on Feb. 16, 2004. Oliveria's Sunday print Huckleberries is a past winner of the national Herb Caen Memorial Column contest.