Claudia Bjorklund will keep her stride Saturday – walking again as she has done for a decade to support a Spokane Alzheimer's Association fundraiser. She'll also wear a cape that tells a story, in step with the memory of her husband, Randy, who had younger-onset Alzheimer's disease.
Optometrists can see more than just vision needs, potentially also glimpsing signs of early diabetes, high blood pressure and cholesterol issues. Longtime Pullman optometrist Jim DeVleming has worked in state and national in leadership roles to raise awareness and also to advocate for the profession to evolve, including the ability after training to offer simple laser treatments now allowed in 10 states. It's called full-scope contemporary optometry.
A new child grief support nonprofit, R.I.S.E. Northwest – the acronym being for Resilience Is Strength and Endurance – is scheduled to start its Spokane programs in early October, said founder Tracy Gyllenhammer. She hope the services will fill a void by offering free support programs for children and teens who are grieving the loss of a parent. Serving ages 5-18, the nonprofit is offering two separate programs: Team R.I.S.E. and Camp Cope, with no-cost enrollment now open. Both have a built-in peer focuses, because that grief is a lifelong journey for children, Gyllenhammer said.
CJ Curtis is the creative force behind the Garden Coffee & Local Eats in Spokane Valley. She designed the space to draw people together for coffee, healthy foods and a calm vibe. She also applies some store proceeds to help survivors who escaped sex-trafficking, with 88 cents from the sales of certain items toward the rescue work of HRC Ministries, a local nonprofit providing shelter, skills training, counseling and therapy. What people may not know is that Curtis long ago escaped herself.
With 27 years in the opioid addiction field, Caleb Banta-Green said he didn't think it could get as bad as today's dramatic hike in fentanyl use statewide. Another difference is that fentanyl is killing people from accidental overdoses in higher numbers than any other drugs, he said. For a recent Gonzaga University talk about strategies, he compiled Spokane reports showing that fentanyl deaths from accidental overdoses spiked in 2021, far surpassing methamphetamine, heroin or cocaine causes. It mirrors trends across Washington.
September ushers in a time when family calendars get packed, but it's also a good time to be active. This fall, the region's family and youth events are ramping up after two years on hold. It's a season ripe for being on the move.
Aurora Nilles, 3, already had plenty of excitement this week with her first preschool days at the West Valley Early Learning Center. Then on Saturday, she and her family will watch for her portrait in Times Square.
Offering tips to protect people from illicitly-made fentanyl, an expert will speak on "The Fentanyl Crisis: How to Keep Loved Ones Safe" at 6 p.m. Tuesday in Spokane on the Gonzaga University campus. Prior registration is required to attend in-person at nextgenerationmedicine_2022.eventbrite.com. The speaker is Caleb Banta-Green, acting professor in psychiatry and behavioral health sciences at the University of Washington School of Medicine.
Respect, then tragedy, dominate the life of Spokane's first female physician, who by1888 became esteemed for her expertise in health care and philanthropic work, but it all seemed to unravel after a son's death and arson conviction. Now, Latham's life is covered in a new book, “Mercy and Madness: Dr. Mary Archard Latham's Tragic Fall from Female Physician to Felon." Author and Spokane resident Beverly Lionberger Hodgins cares about more than just history. She's a distant relative of Latham's.
Connor "Hubba" Hagerty held on for 8 seconds with a high score for a win in the Aug. 19 bull-riding contest at the Pend Oreille County Fair & Rodeo. But when Hagerty moved to get off the bull, that's when everything went horribly wrong.
Sister Rosalie Locati accepted a call 22 years ago to encourage caregivers, regularly wandering the hallways and nooks of Providence Sacred Heart Medical Center. This week, she retires after 60 years of service, including early as a teacher and years mentoring Washington State University students. At Sacred Heart, she gained respect for compassion and humor, and Friday, Locati reluctantly agreed to some fuss over her. Staff organized a parade send-off, with her in a convertible.
More access to mental health services with a cultural focus – and tools to address trauma – are among issues facing Native Americans who are struggling, said counselors in a Spokane program. They're also fighting a fentanyl crisis. Now, the American Indian Community Center's Goodheart Behavioral Health program is able to add mental health counseling, through UnitedHealthcare's $150,000 grant.
Parents nationwide are juggling expenses as inflation makes it costlier to buy this year's requested list of classroom supplies – from pens and paper to folders and glue sticks. Some parents here are waiting to buy items to stretch the monthly budget, or if they're in West Valley and have an elementary student, that district is among some using federal relief money to buy basic school supplies for children.
Technology that measures how eye pupils respond to light is showing promise in research as a pediatric screening tool for autism – with a goal for interventions as young as toddler ages, said a Washington State University researcher. Autism spectrum disorder affects communication and social interactions with others, but children on average aren't diagnosed until age 4, which misses crucial times when they're developing language and speech.
On an early August evening, 50 butterflies were released from mesh containers into a Coeur d'Alene garden, as families listened to music and watched the insects fly. In many cultures, legends described butterflies as symbols of rejuvenation, hope and rebirth. Some oral traditions referred to them as being able to take messages to deceased loved ones.
Green View Farms has sixth and seventh generations working on acreage that includes an 1878 homestead site, near Fairfield, Wash. Today, the farm grows different crops but predominantly wheat and bluegrass seed, the latter requiring years of tinkering to produce better yields without burning. A byproduct of grass straw also is growing in demand. Lonnie and Marci Green's sons Jordan and Derek are slowly taking on more responsibilities.
A future for regional Kentucky bluegrass seed production looks green again. There are gains in developing new grass seed varieties that can produce yields up to about four years, along with a market in livestock food production and overseas demand for grass straw, said Paul Dashiell with Seeds Inc. The industry had to adapt after a ban against field burning, a previous practice to increase yields that ceased in the 1990s in Washington, and around 2007 in Idaho except on some tribal land.
Devin Rogers and Joleigh Foster had nowhere to stay in Spokane when doctors said their second child had a congenital heart condition and would require several months in a neonatal intensive care unit after delivery.
As a teenager, Jackie Charlebois dreamed of national shows as a figure skater. That looked promising when a prominent coach asked her to train with him in Florida. A year's work with figure skating choreographer Doug Mattis ended when illness forced her to go home. Charlebois packed her skates away for more than 20 years, but now, at age 43, she's made a comeback – so well that she has landed on ice again in a national spotlight for two years in a row.
Danica Dart is steering toward Nascar-style contests. That goal meant seeking to qualify to race 200 laps at Stateline this past Saturday. Never mind that she isn't old enough legally to drive across Spokane. Danica, 14, entered the event alongside her best friend, Kaidyn Moran, 16, a Kennewick resident. Both say it's a family-centered sport.
With fewer young kids in summer recreational baseball compared with 20 years ago, the trend is concerning to Spokane Valley Baseball League president Bill Kreider, who wonders if traditional ballpark play during the season's warm days is fading away.
Pickleball is picking up in Spokane. About 4,000 players regionally are part of Spokane-based PNW Pickleball Association, started four years ago. More resources help people find spots to play via USA Pickleball Association, Facebook groups and the association's Pickleball Playground site. The city plans more courts at area parks. Pickleball became the state's official sport June 9.