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Saturday’s highlights

Joseph Guerrinha, center, practices with his teammates after taking a monthlong break from soccer to recover from a concussion. SR photo/J. Bart Rayniak

We managed to pack a bunch of interesting stories in Saturday's Valley Voice, starting with the touching story by correspondent Steve Christilaw about Central Valley High School soccer player Joseph Guerrinha. He's back in the game after suffering a serious concussion that he has no memory of.

The Spokane Valley City Council discussed projects to improve the Mission trailhead in Greenacres and establish railroad quiet zones west of Millwood. The were also questions as to whether the city counld afford to do the work. In other City news, newly appointed councilman Arne Woodard has already filed the required paperwork to run in the November election.

Correspondent Juli Bergstrom-Wasson has a look at the new Five Guys Burgers and Fries location at Sprague and Sullivan. I went in once to check it out and the line was nearly out the door. But you can munch on free peanuts while you wait and watching the kitchen staff at work is entertaining.

Other stories rounding out the pack include one on the end of the Miss Spokane Valley pageant and reporter Lisa Leinberger's story on the expansion of a women's homeless shelter.

CVHS hosts mock crash

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People may have noticed a lot of emergency vehicles and a MedStar helicopter at Central Valley High School yesterday morning. Nothing went wrong; the school was just hosting a mock crash demonstration. They are held every couple of years to warn students of the possible consequences of drinking and driving. Students play the role of victims and some schools have even been known to put on fake funerals to go with it. I've been to one before and they can be incredibly realistic. You can check tomorrow's Valley Voice for a few more details on how it went in the weekly fire department roundup. All photos are courtesy of the Spokane Valley Fire Department.

Saturday’s highlights

Among construction projects in Spokane Valley, work has started again on the Barker Road sewer project at Laberry Drive in Greenacres. SR photo/J. Bart Rayniak

There was a lot to go over in Saturday's Valley Voice and I've got highlights in case you missed a few things. Road construction season has started already in Spokane Valley, with several road and sewer projects coming up. A few are already underway. The largest and most disruptive project planned (other than the addition of new freeway lanes between Sullivan and Barker) is the installation of a concrete intersection at Indiana and Sullivan.

Reporter Lisa Lienberger was in a humanities class at Central Valley High School recently when World War II veteran Del Spear visited to talk about his experiences on a minesweeper. Spokane Valley City Councilman Dean Grafos recently filed paperwork to run for re-election this November. In related news, the Spokane Valley City Council selected five candidates to interview this week for one of the two vacant council positions.

Coming on Saturday

People in certain neighborhoods have already seen the bright orange "road construction" signs popping up, which means it's time for the annual road construction season story in the Valley Voice. It will run tomorrow, complete with a nice map and information on the estimated start and stop times for each project. Then you'll be able to plot out your traveling routes for the coming months.

Residents in Fairfield will start seeing a new six percent utility tax on their electric bills in July after the city council recently approved the tax. Reporter Lisa Leinberger will have a story on a World War II veteran who recently visited a humanities class at Central Valley High School to talk about his war-time experiences. There will also be another Spokane Valley City Council candidate annoucement.

Saturday’s highlights

This picture of Ronda Emerson was taken on the Going-to-the-Sun Road in Glacier National Park in August. It is the family's favorite photo of her, and is the screensaver on the computer at the Otis Grill. Photo courtesy the Emerson family.

It's time for the Monday morning roundup up of the highlights from Saturday's Valley Voice. Saturday was the funeral for The Otis Grill co-owner Ronda Emerson, who died in a snowmobiling accident in Montana. She was well known in the community and restaurant regulars are mourning her loss.

Parents looking for child care have a new option. An hourly drop-in child care center called Recess Time has opened in Spokane Valley. It offers care for children age 12 months to 12 years old. For those interested in high school theater, Central Valley High School is getting ready for performances of "The Sound of Music." Opening night is March 10.

The City of Liberty Lake plans to start construction on phase one of its arboretum project as soon as the weather warms. Reporter Lisa Leinberger has the details on how they expect to pay for the project.

Coming on Saturday

Firefighters from the Spokane Valley Fire Department faced heavy smoke and flames in a fire at the Manor Vale Apartments at 10101 E. Main on March 1. Photo courtesy the Spokane Valley Fire Department.

The hills behind Central Valley High School are apparently alive with the sound of music. Reporter Lisa Leinberger talked to Central Valley High School students who are part of the cast for the classic musical "The Sound of Music" that will soon take the stage. Her story will be in Saturday's Valley Voice.

The community of Otis Orchards is in mourning after the accidental death of Ronda Emerson, the well-known co-owner of The Otis Grill. I spoke to her husband and a few others at the restaurant this week to paint a picture of a fearless, adventurous woman who was willing to help anyone in need.

The Liberty Lake City Council recently voted to spend some money on the first phase of the long-planned arboretum. Reporter Lisa Leinberger will have the details on that. And, last but not least, the Spokane Valley Fire Department responded to two major fires last week.

Today’s highlights

Bill Jones and  his cat, Jasmine, are reunited at home after she was missing for 10 days. SR photo/Dan Pelle

Apparently I was right when I posted yesterday that we had so much good stuff coming up for today's Valley Voice that we couldn't fit it all in. The Liberty Lake police blotter is MIA from today's Voice, so look for it on Saturday.

On to business. Supporters of the East Valley "re-visioning" plan had their say at this week's board meeting, supporting the plan to close middle schools and put grades pre-kindergarten through the eighth grade in one building. Changes may be in store for Evergreen Middle School, which is due for renovation if the a Central Valley School District bond passes in February. A severe shortage of electrical outlets forces the school to "daisy chain" electrical cords together, which any firefighter can tell you isn't a good idea.

Students at Central Valley High School recently gave a rousing sendoff to orchestra teacher Mason Flemmer, who is deploying to Afghanistan with his Army Reserve unit. Correspondent Cindy Hval has a touching story about a man's search for his lost cat that thankfully ended well.

And after yesterday's snow dump and today's great melt, there's a short story on what to do if Waste Management misses you on trash pickup day. Waste Management serves Spokane Valley and most areas of unincorporated Spokane County. 

Coming Thursday

We have so many stories for Thursday's Valley Voice I'm not sure if we can fit them all in. Reporter Lisa Leinberger will score a trifecta, writing all three of the cover stories. She takes another look at the Central Valley construction bond issue by visiting Evergreen Middle School, which is scheduled for renovation if the bond passes. The East Valley School District board met again this week. Supporters of the district's "re-visioning" plan to combine grades pre-kindergarten through the eighth grade in the same building controlled the microphone this time.

An assembly was held recently at Central Valley High School to recognize the school's orchestra teacher, who is deploying to Afghanistan with the Army Reserves. The Spokane Valley City Council held a mostly uneventful meeting with a light agenda. Meanwhile, the Liberty Lake Police Chief believes a prolific garage buglar is back in town and up to his old tricks after being arrested last month.