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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Inland Empire Railway Historical Society plans open house

The majestic visage of the mighty steam engine. The rumble and roar of the cars speeding down the track. The thrill of getting a wave and a blast of the whistle from the engineer. Trains have enthralled many children for decades, and for some that fascination goes with them into adulthood. This weekend both kids and adults will have the opportunity to take an up-close look at trains, as the Inland Empire Railway Historical Society hosts its fourth annual open house at the Spokane County Fair & Expo Center.

Gunman takes cash at Empire Foods

A robber wearing a mask and armed with a handgun took money from a clerk about 10 p.m. Tuesday at Empire Foods, 5434 N. Nevada St., Spokane police said. The robber fled on foot with all of the cash register money.

Empire Foods robbery

Surveillance footage shows a man with a gun robbing Empire Foods, 5434 N. Nevada St., in Spokane about 10 p.m. Tuesday night, June 8, 2010. He escaped with all the cash from the register, and Spokane police are asking anyone with information to call Crime Check at (509) 456-2233.

Empire Foods armed robber wore mask

A robber wearing a mask and armed with a handgun took money from a clerk about 10 p.m. Tuesday at Empire Foods, 5434 N. Nevada St., Spokane police said.

Burning Memories

Spot fires flared in the streets as families fled Wallace. For days, the city’s residents thought they might escape the forest fires blazing in the mountains around them. But by the evening of Aug. 20, 1910, gale-force winds were pelting the town with glowing embers.

Millwood patch grows more than pumpkins

Longtime Millwood residents may remember the pumpkin patch that was planted every year on the north shore of the Spokane River next to Argonne Road. That spot is being reborn as the Pumpkin Patch Community Garden and yes, there will be pumpkins growing in the rocky soil again. A group of about 30 community volunteers gathered at the site a few weeks ago to create garden beds with donated lumber and fill them with donated soil. There are 30 beds available to the public and only about half have been reserved so far. Many are still empty plots, but some are already dotted with small green seedlings poking above the soil. “It looks like someone has their cabbage in,” said the Rev. Craig Goodwin, pastor of Millwood Presbyterian Church, as he surveyed the garden recently.

Board readies grant program

The new Empire Health Foundation intends to distribute $1 million in grants this year to regional nonprofits. It will be the foundation’s first charitable action since its formation 19 months ago, after the sale of Deaconess Medical Center and Valley Hospital and Medical Center to a for-profit company.

Senate punts on resolving UPS-FedEx labor spat

The U.S. Senate escaped a ticklish dilemma Thursday, but a problem affecting both Washington and Idaho has been only deferred, not resolved. It will return whenever the House and Senate get around to reconciling their separate reauthorization bills for the Federal Aviation Administration. Although FAA reauthorization is long overdue, Republican Sen. Bob Corker of Tennessee had put a hold on it for fear that a provision would be added to erode Tennessee-based FedEx’s ability to compete with larger United Parcel Service.

Water rules could affect paper plant

A water quality improvement report for the Spokane River and Long Lake issued by the Washington state Department of Ecology last month may have a significant impact on the city of Millwood. Monday night’s Millwood City Council meeting included a discussion of how the report mandates Inland Empire Paper Co., as well as other “dischargers” of waste along the Spokane River, to reduce phosphorus levels.

Odessa refinery helping meet demand for biodiesel

ODESSA, Wash. – It has been a rough go for Washington’s fledgling biodiesel industry, with only a handful of the announced projects actually coming into production and promised financial support from the state withering in the harsh economic climate. Yet one regional refinery is successfully turning crops from regional farmers into fuel for cars, trucks, buses and ferries. Inland Empire Oilseeds is becoming another made-in-Washington success story through the alliance of tough business sense and green idealism.

Midwest weather disrupts westbound Empire Builder

Harsh winter weather across the Midwest weather disrupted Amtrak’s Empire Builder service, canceling the westbound Saturday morning train. The Amtrak Web site said it’s possible the disruption could continue through the weekend.

Council delays traffic alterations until spring

The Millwood City Council decided to delay any action on traffic concerns regarding Fowler Road and Empire Avenue until spring during its meeting Monday night. This decision came after a brief presentation made to the council by Matt Gillis, project manager for engineering firm Welch Comer and Associates. Gillis’ report focused on the findings of the firm’s October independent traffic study.

Detractors line up against state’s Spokane River plan

The latest plan to limit algae-producing phosphorus in the Spokane River is drawing critics from all directions as Washington officials consider whether to move ahead with it. One company that discharges phosphorus in its wastewater, Inland Empire Paper Co., says new pollution limits might put it out of business. Avista Utilities says it would be on the hook for pollution it doesn’t cause. City officials in Idaho say Washington regulators are overstepping their authority by setting limits for wastewater plants across the border.

Even after the blast, well, they’re still having one

Dynamite isn’t your usual garden building tool. Unless you live on top of a basalt cliff and want to be closer to the view. That’s all Stan and Donna Canter wanted to do at their home north of Wandermere. What they ended up with was a tropical paradise in the middle of the pines and dry grass meadows of a former cattle ranch. It’s no wonder they won the August Garden of the Month from the Inland Empire Gardeners.

Even after the blast, well, they’re still having one

Dynamite isn’t your usual garden building tool. Unless you live on top of a basalt cliff and want to be closer to the view. That’s all Stan and Donna Canter wanted to do at their home north of Wandermere. What they ended up with was a tropical paradise in the middle of the pines and dry grass meadows of a former cattle ranch. It’s no wonder they won the August Garden of the Month from the Inland Empire Gardeners.

Millwood council orders more study of traffic speeds

Amid conflicting comments from Millwood residents regarding alleged traffic problems, the Millwood City Council unanimously approved seeking additional traffic data on Fowler, Empire and Butler roads Monday night at the regular City Council meeting. “Our streets are so narrow,” Millwood resident Richard Gardner said. “If a little child or dog comes out on the street, at 25 mph you hardly have any time to stop.”

Kaleidoscope of color offers reprieve from winter palette

This time of year, Spokane’s landscape usually has turned to shades of tan and brown. Most blooming plants have taken a hiatus with the recent heat and will come back around after it cools off. Not in Dixie and Allan LeTourneau’s yard, though. You could see the brilliant purple and pink Wave petunias a block away. Didn’t have to go hunting for that house number.

Colorful yard offers reprieve from winter’s bleak palette

This time of year, Spokane’s landscape usually has turned to shades of tan and brown. Most blooming plants have taken a hiatus with the recent heat and will come back around after it cools off. Not in Dixie and Allan LeTourneau’s yard, though. You could see the brilliant purple and pink Wave petunias a block away. Didn’t have to go hunting for that house number.