Mahjong at the Library

You are invited to enjoy mahjong at the Ridgefield Library at 1:00 p.m. on Thursdays. Beginners are welcome.

Mahjong is a game of skill, strategy, and calculation and involves a degree of chance. It’s similar to the Western card game rummy.

It’s played with a set of 144 tiles based on Chinese characters and symbols, although some regional variations use a different number of tiles. In most variations, each player begins by receiving 13 tiles. In turn players draw and discard tiles until they complete a legal hand using the 14th drawn tile to form four groups (melds) and a pair (head). There are fairly standard rules about how a piece is drawn, stolen from another player and thus melded, the use of simples (numbered tiles) and honours (winds and dragons), the kinds of melds, and the order of dealing and play. However there are many regional variations in the rules; in addition, the scoring system and the minimum hand necessary to win varies significantly based on the local rules being used.

View Ridge Middle School and South Ridge Elementary SChool awarded School of Distinction Awards for 2014!

View Ridge Middle School and South Ridge Elementary School were selected by the Center for Educational Effectiveness (CEE) in partnership with the Association of Educational Service Districts (AESD), the Association of Washington School Principals (AWSP), Washington Association of School Administrators (WASA), Washington State School Directors’ Association (WSSDA), and Washington State Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (WSASCD) as 2014 Schools of Distinction in an announcement made Tuesday, October 28.

This is the third consecutive School of Distinction Award for South Ridge Elementary School, having also won in 2012 and 2013, and the first for View Ridge Middle School. In order to receive a School of Distinction Award, schools must demonstrate outstanding improvement in reading and math scores sustained over a five-year period. Schools of Distinction represent only the top 5% of schools in Washington State for improvement at their respective levels.

“For these two schools to receive School of Distinction Awards demonstrates the dedication and hard work of our teachers and staff, district-wide, to increasing student learning,” said Dr. Nathan McCann, Superintendent of Ridgefield School District. “Receiving these awards provides proof of the team effort put forth by every staff member throughout the district to creating an environment where students can excel.”

The Center for Educational Effectiveness (CEE) in partnership with the Association of Educational Service Districts (AESD), the Association of Washington School Principals (AWSP), Washington Association of School Administrators (WASA), Washington State School Directors’ Association (WSSDA), and Washington State Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (WSASCD) recognize schools in the top 5% of improvement for their levels to receive the School of Distinction Awards.

The 2014 School of Distinction award winners include 54 elementary schools, 22 middle / junior high schools, 17 high schools, and 8 alternative schools.  Greg Lobdell, President of CEE noted, “These schools are from all regions of the state, all sizes of towns, with a range from 2.7% to 100% poverty and enrollment of English Language Learners as high as 40%. These schools demonstrate that significant improvement is occurring all across our diverse public schools.”

Each regional Educational Service District throughout the state will be hosting an award ceremony to recognize the SOD award winners within their districts. Dates will be announced in subsequent, regional press releases.

For more Ridgefield schools news, visit the district website. You can also get more district news from their Facebook page or on Twitter.

Preview of Tour

Preview 2

Here are a couple of shots of the art hanging at 906 Harney Street in downtown Vancouver, ready for the the preview of the Open Studio Tour on Saturday, November 1. Come and meet the artists, and see which studios you’d like to visit on the 8 and 9, when the tour takes place.

Preview 3

There will be music by Chris Bidleman and his Up Front band, and two kinds of beer to sample from Dirty Hands brewery. Hope you can come!

Reminder: Yoga Garden Women’s Elixir this Saturday

Yoga Garden (FYI sponsor) is planning an afternoon where you can let go of ALL the “I should’s” and “have to’s” and experience a whole new holiday season! Be the first one on your gift list with an experience focused on YOU!

It’s Saturday, November 1st, from 4 – 6 pm. Yoga Garden Ridgefield is at 208 Pioneer Street, #B, above the hardware store. Reservations are suggested. Tickets at the studio are $10 or can be purchased on-line (under events page here for $11. Tickets at the door will be $15.

For more information, please look at the post dated October 15.


Park & Ride Ribbon Cutting

The Junction Park & Ride Ribbon Cutting will be tomorrow Thursday, October 30th at 3:00pm. The new Park & Ride is located on the corner of North 65th and North 1st circle, next to Country Café.

This photo show the site before completion of the Park & Ride.

Park n Ride wide angle

Ridgefield Library Programs October 29 to November 1

Looking Ahead

Saturday November 8 – Friends of the Library Book Sale from 9-3 p.m. 9-10 a.m. is a members only sale. Memberships available at the door. the general public may purchase books after 10am. From 2-3 p.m. there’s a Buck a Bag sale.

At 11:00 a.m. – Experience the Wacky World of Animals by gifted magician and ventriloquist, Steve Taylor. Brought to you by your local library.

Wednesday October 29

10:00 a.m.-Stitchery Group
10:30 a.m.-Preschool Story Time
4:00 p.m.-Ridgefield Gaming Group

Thursday October 30

3:30 p.m.-Spanish Conversation Circle

Friday October 31

10:30 Toddler Story Time

Saturday November 1

10:00 a.m.-Library LEGO Lovers

Two Positions at City of Ridgefield

The City of Ridgefield is accepting applications to fill two positions in its Community Development Department: A Director/Planner and a Permit Technician.

The Community Development Department consists of Planning and Building Divisions that work together to implement the community’s vision for the city, plan for the future and regulate development. The Department’s responsibilities include land use, long range and comprehensive planning, building services and developer support activities; development review, inspection and permitting and code enforcement.

The Community Development Director–Planner will assume full leadership and management responsibility for department services and activities. Competitive candidates will have at least five years of progressively responsible experience in planning; a bachelor’s degree in a job-related field and membership in a professional standards organization such as AICP.

The Permit Tech performs a wide variety of technical administrative responsibilities for the department including receiving, logging and distributing development plans; checking and reviewing permit applications for proper form and sufficiency of information; and issues permits as authorized. Qualified candidates should have an associate’s degree or equivalent and two years job related experience involving interaction with the general public.

Please contact City Hall or visit the City’s website at on the “Jobs” page for the complete job announcements and application information.

CC Studio Tour Preview is Saturday


This was the scene Sunday as artists prepared for the Preview of the Clark County Open Studios Tour on Saturday, November 1. Eight of the 50 artists are from Ridgefield – we are well represented!

Art lovers are invited to a Preview Exhibit and Artist’s Reception this Saturday, Nov. 1, from 5 to 8 p.m., at 906 Harney St. in downtown Vancouver. This is an opportunity to see one work of art from each artist participating in the Clark County Open Studio set for the following weekend.

Guests can meet the artists themselves, and pick up a guide to plan which of the 50 studios to visit on the tour. Vancouver’s own Dirty Hands Brewery will provide appetizers and tastings of two special brews, and music will be performed by Open Studio artist Chris Bidleman and his Upfront Band.

The second annual Clark County Open Studios tour will be held Saturday, Nov. 8 and Sunday, Nov. 9, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Local artists open their studios to the public and share how, why and where their art is created. This is a unique opportunity to visit artists and artisans, view diverse works and buy pieces specifically created or made available for this event. For further details on the reception or the tour, visit

Details of the reception are also on Facebook, here.

Did You Know Ridgefield’s middle school students learn to say no to drugs and alcohol by celebrating Red Ribbon Week?

Sheriff's Deputy Pete Olson, a Ridgefield parent, spoke with students about the dangers of drug use

Sheriff’s Deputy Pete Olson, a Ridgefield parent, spoke with students about the dangers of drug use

Students learned the dangers of drug and alcohol abuse by celebrating Red Ribbon Week at View Ridge Middle School with dedicated classroom lessons and a visit from a Deputy Sheriff Pete Olson from Washington County’s Sheriff’s Department in Oregon.

Throughout the week, seventh and eighth graders learned about the dangers of drugs and alcohol in their classes. In math classes, students calculated percentages to analyze tobacco statistics and how tobacco is a leading cause of cancer. Students received lessons about methods they could use to help deny peer pressure and prevent the use of drugs, alcohol and risky behavior in the LifeSkills curriculum taught during Physical Education class, while students studied drug and alcohol advertisements in Language Arts and Social Studies classes to see how words can be used to manipulate the psyche of readers. Students signed pledges on a banner vowing remain drug- and alcohol-free which the school will display for the entire year in the commons area.

On Thursday, Sheriff’s Deputy Pete Olson from Washington County in Oregon spoke to seventh and eighth graders about his role as a K-9 unit who helps close down drug manufacturers and arrest drug dealers. Olson is married to Vicky Olson, an English Language Learners (ELL) Paraeducator at South Ridge Elementary School, and their sons, Nathan and Dillon, are eighth and fifth graders in Ridgefield School District, respectively.

Deputy Pete Olson answered student questions about his job and how the department works

Deputy Pete Olson answered student questions about his job and how the department works

Olson spoke to students about the risks of drug use and the different types of drugs and their effects on the human body. Students asked questions including what breeds of dogs the department uses to hunt drugs, how officers train their dogs, how many drug cases Olson has helped close over his career, how difficult it is to interrogate someone, what is a gateway drug, and what is the best part of his job. Olson said chasing down suspects in his car is one of the best parts of his job.

Deputy Pete Olson and his K-9, Tau, help hunt down and arrest drug dealers

Deputy Pete Olson and his K-9, Tau, help hunt down and arrest drug dealers

Olson always wanted to become a member of law enforcement, “I want to be the guy who wears the white hat who makes a difference helping people.” In order to become a member of the K-9 unit and manage a drug-sniffing dog, Olson had to serve in the department for five years and complete an intensive application process which took several months. “Everyone wants to work as a K-9 unit,” explained Olson. “The dogs come home with their officers, and the dogs must receive constant training to remain vigilant and dedicated to what they do.”

Olson offers tips for parents to ensure their kids refuse to use drugs:

  • Parents should have open communication with your kids: talk about the dangers of drugs and how harmful they can be for users.
  • Parents need to know the friends of their children. In surveys, students report their friends as the people who can most influence them to use drugs.

“With supportive parents and good decision-making skills, kids can always make the right move to not use drugs or alcohol,” said Olson.

This is the fourth year View Ridge Middle School has celebrated Red Ribbon Week. “Students really like learning about the material and have come to look forward to it each year,” said Kirstin Kunihisa, school counselor for View Ridge. “The students raved about Deputy Olson’s presentation.”

In 1985, the National Federation of Parents for Drug-Free Youth joined with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to create Red Ribbon Week in honor of DEA agent Enrique “Kiki” Camarena who was killed in the line of duty fighting the influx of illegal drugs from Mexico. Each year, students and citizens worldwide celebrate Red Ribbon Week from October 23-31 dedicated to Camarena and all victims killed as a result of violence stemming from the illegal drug trade.

Did you know you can submit story ideas for upcoming Did You Knows? Submit your story idea via the District’s online form here:

For more Did You Knows, visit the district website. You can also get more district news from their Facebook page or on Twitter.

Thought for the Week

Happiness doesn’t come easily, just because you want, or even deserve it. You’ve got to find your own way to let happiness in. Sometimes, when it threatens to get away from you, you have to reach out the window and pull it in, like capturing a bird.

- Julia Glass, in In the Dark Sacred Night

Notes from the City Council Meeting 10-23-14

Mayor Onslow read a Proclamation declaring the week of October 27th to be “Red Ribbon Week”.  The Red Ribbon Campaign is wearing red ribbons as a symbol of intolerance towards the use of drugs.  The Lewis & Clark Young Marines is a local community organization that is working to keep our kids drug free.  Members of the Lewis & Clark Marines were present and received a copy of the proclamation. Everyone present at the Council Meeting received a red ribbon “Living Drug Free”.

Chairman of the Salary Commission, Dave Kelly, gave an overview on the Salary Commission.  The Commission decided that it was time the City Council received more money.  The current salary for Council persons is $50.00 per meeting with a max of $3,000.00 a year.  It was decided the Council person’s salary would increase to $375.00 per month for an annual maximum of $4.500.00.  The current Mayor’s salary is $100.00 per meeting  with a max of $6,000.00.   The Mayor salary would increase to $750.00 per month for an annual maximum of $9,000 per year. The effective date is 1-1-15.  The Commission decided to have a monthly salary versus paying per meeting.  The Council persons have not had a raise in their salaries since 2003.

Business/Public Hearing – Hearing on Ridgefield Development Code Amendments for Recreational Marijuana Uses

Elizabeth Decker gave the different options available to the Council. Ban all areas concerning marijuana (the growing, distribution and selling or band the selling but allow the growing and or the distribution)

Ordinance 1163 – Ridgefield Development Code Amendments for Recreational Marijuana Uses

A motion was made NOT to allow any selling, growing, or distribution of marijuana within the City limits of Ridgefield and to waive the second reading. Motion passed 4-3

Hearing on Ridgefield Development Code for Medical Marijuana Uses – Options on the zoning regulations for collective gardens and how they collective gardens operate were given.

Ordinance 1164 – Ridgefield Development Code Amendments for Medical Marijuana Uses

A motion was made NOT to allow any Collective Gardens withinthe City limits of Ridgefield and to waive the second reading. Motion passed 7-0

Ordinance 1165 – The Temporary Moratorium for Medical Marijuana Dispensaries and Collective Gardens.

Ordinance 1166 – The Temporary Moratorium for Recreational Marijuana Production, Processing, and Retail Operations.

It was not necessary to vote on either of these ordinances because 1163 and 1164 votes rejected all aspects of the marijuana issues.

Resolution No.467 – Consideration and Approval of Resolution supporting Proposition No.1, the Clark County Home Rule Charter, in the November 2014 General Election. Darrin W excused himself from voting on this Resolution. Passed 6-0.

Resolution No.468 – Authorize hunting and the discharge of shotguns during time when hunting is legally permitted on the Wells property.

Lee W excused himself from voting on this Resolution. Passed 6-0

The Park & Ride is almost done.  There will be an opening ceremony on October 30th at 3PM

Single Family permits to end September are 10 issued, 1 in review and 7 ready for pickup. The year to date total is 95 permits.


School Construction Update – 10/24/2014

Crews finished installing seating into the multipurpose performance facility and made finishing touches to the softball field this week.

The seating in the multipurpose room can be moved in and out to enable a variety of different configurations depending on the needs of the class using the facility at the time.

Ridgefield High School - October 24, 2014

For more information on Ridgefield School District’s ongoing construction projects, visit their construction blog by clicking here

You can also get more district news from their Facebook page or on Twitter.

Construction at the Sportsman’s

Sportsmans floor

The Sportsman’s Restaurant and Lounge (FYI sponsor) continues to grow even through the rain. As of Wednesday the back deck upper level wall frames were going up. Inside, guests continue to dine in comfort. Note the 2×4 nailed to the floor – this is where the new (temporary) wall will be while the workers join the two sections of building together.

sportsman interior

Vossenberg Farm in Ridgefield to host tour

Ridgefield’s Vossenberg Farm will offer a tour of its 26-acre horse stable and training facility next month to highlight its water management practices. The tour will be 9 to 11 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 8 at the farm, 6009 N.W. 289th St. in Ridgefield. The tour is open to the public; registration is $10. Participants can register online at, or call 360-397-6060, ext. 5729 or email Eric Lambert at

Note from Kathy: this date is the same as the Clark County Open Studio Tour, and the entrance to Vossenberg’s farm is about 200 feet east of the road leading to my house. There will be a sign on 289th Street. Stop after your tour to visit my studio and get a cup of coffee and some brownies. There will be a tray of gluten free ones too!

Birds in Downtown Ridgefield!

Birds at Beth An's 2

Anyone walking down Pioneer Street can see Elizabeth An’s flowers, but what they don’t see are all the birds that come. They fly away from anyone walking on the sidewalk, but come back a minute later. You can watch them from the porch next door if you are quiet.

Birds at Beth's

the birds are goldfinches – they lose some of their colors in the fall.

Paul Snoey took these pictures Sunday afternoon.