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Huckleberries: One of two Coeur d’Alene Ironman events likely to take a hike

Competitors emerge from Lake Coeur d’Alene during the 2013 Ironman. (File Photo/The Spokesman-Review)
Competitors emerge from Lake Coeur d’Alene during the 2013 Ironman. (File Photo/The Spokesman-Review)

There’s a move afoot by the Coeur d’Alene Chamber of Commerce to drop one of the city’s two Ironman Coeur d’Alene races after this summer.

The behind-the-scene maneuvers came to light at the Coeur d’Alene City Council meeting Tuesday during the public comment period. Riverstone developer John Stone asked the council point blank about a rumor that Coeur d’Alene was canceling Ironman.

Stone is a two-time Ironman and fan.

He wanted to know if the city is still committed to Ironman Coeur d’Alene. Mayor Steve Widmyer responded that it was. But pointed out that the chamber is the major sponsoring organization. Huckleberries hears that the chamber is concerned about the declining number of triathletes in the full Ironman Coeur d’Alene and the wishy-washy commitment to the race from the now for-profit Ironman organization.

The chamber, according to Huckleberries’ sources, wants to drop the full Ironman in favor of a half one that is now held on the last Sunday of June. Ironman 70.3 was staged last year for the first time. Both events will be held this summer. Ironman Coeur d’Alene began with much fanfare in summer 2003. The current five-year contract between the chamber and Ironman runs out this year.

Meanwhile, the major Coeur d’Alene players in this exercise are officially mum.

The council will discuss this matter at its June 20 meeting. Stay tuned.

Still jumping

While photographing teens diving off the rocks on Tubbs Hill this week, Don Sausser remembered something the late Ace Walden told him. Walden, a well-known Coeur d’Alene banker who died in 2010 at age 103, told Sausser how he jumped off those same rocks in 1916. Sometimes, Walden recalled, he and the other boys would skinny dip around the rocks until the tour boats arrived. Then, they’d submerge. Seems mixed bathing was still a ways off. But modesty wasn’t.


Poet’s Corner: No archers in sight/ no bowmen at hand/ yet more arrows here/ than Custer’s Last Stand – Tom Wobker, The Bard of Sherman Avenue (“The Road Signs at Seltice and Highway 41”) … Huckleberries Gold Star Recommendation for Fun Friday? Fun Day, from noon on at Coeur d’Alene’s City Park, including the grand opening of the back-to-the-future Coeur d’Alene Carousel. Be there or be square. … Colleague Nina Culver has conjured another perk that comes with working for this newspaper. She can “now spell ‘arborvitae’ without looking it up.” (Huckleberries, which didn’t look it up, hopes she’s right) … More from Kellogg Police Department Roll Call: Goats escaped from a yard on Riverside Avenue because (drum roll, puh-LEEZ) – the “grass was greener on the other side.” Isn’t it always?

Parting shot

Councilwoman Kiki Miller admits she was a “coward.” When she saw the subject line of Police Chief Lee White’s heads-up email Saturday, she refused to open it. The subject line? “Arrow/dart in cat.” As a Coeur d’Alene councilwoman, Miller said in a Facebook post that “there are many difficult things to tackle.” But she wasn’t ready to read about “one more crazy act in the world.” She needed a day to process the “anger, frustration and sadness” that the subject line evoked. The silver lining here? Feline Tika, the victim in the assault, survived.

You can contact D.F. “Dave” Oliveria at (509) 319-0354 or