Community Garden

Did you have a plot at the Community Garden last year? If you want to keep it, the deadline for renewing is March 31. After that, any one on the waiting list will be assigned a plot. During May, gardeners with assigned plots may secure additional plots if available. If any plots remain unassigned, advertising will be done to recruit additional gardeners.

The garden is at 224 South 5th Avenue and there are 10’x10′ plots and 4’x10′ plots available for $35 and $17, respectively, for the whole year including water. All you have to do is plant, water, weed and harvest.

To apply, please complete the Community Garden Application found here and return it to the City of Ridgefield along with your payment.

For more info, visit Ridgefield City Hall on Pioneer or email or call 360 721-1046

Ridgefield Umpqua Closes Tomorrow

Tomorrow is the last day of business for Umpqua Bank in downtown Ridgefield. We will miss having a bank close enough to walk to, and our older citizens who don’t drive will have a problem doind their banking business.

Come down and say goodbye to the staff at the bank, especially Debbie Raffelson who has seen the building transform from to First Independent to Sterling to Umpqua. She will be going to the Salmon Creek branch, and says she’ll miss the friendly citizens here and especially the large windows looking out into greenery.

We’ll miss you!

I’m on a Mission

Last week I went to the Port meeting, and noticed they are still providing bottled water at their meetings. I was surprised, not only because plastic bottles are so detrimental to our environment, but also because it says to the public that Ridgefield water is not good enough to drink right out of the tap.

A year or so ago I brought these facts to the attention of the City Council members, and they now provide water in pitchers and paper cups.

I wonder how many other groups still use bottled water? Guess I’ll have to go to some meetings to find out!

This is my mission.


Only in Ridgefield

It’s great to see the community support of Teriyaki Thai restaurant after incorrect information was sent out by the United States government. The two new owners, Sombat Wongthawinkul and Rujira Woraphan reported record sales after the error was corrected.

May I remind you that all the stores and restaurants in our area need and welcome customers? They can’t stay in business without you folks – the closing of Buckets came with a shock for many, and the Mercantile is gone too. What a shame!

Please support our local businesses. Think Ridgefield first!

Misleading Articles

Both the Columbian and Reflector printed misleading articles about the owners of Teriyaki Thai restaurant that have hurt their business.

Seems the FORMER OWNER was charged and pled guilty to forced labor, visa fraud and tax evasion and both papers printed that he was “the owner of Teriyaki Thai restaurant in Ridgefield.”

But the current owners Sombat and Rujir Wongthawinkul bought it from this convicted owner two years ago!

Sombat reported their business has tanked in the last several days because local people think they are the guilty ones – instead of honest, hard working people who value and treat their employees very well.

More on Hairy Bittercress

Those of you who have been reading the blog for awhile may remember that I warned you about hairy bittercress, the pretty little weed that tends to take over our gardens in the spring. Now I find out the leaves are edible and add a mild and peppery flavor to spring salads.

The plants have actually been lurking near the surface all winter, having germinated in the fall and waited out the cold temperatures before sending up flowers and seeds.

Hairy bittercress (Cardamine hirsuta) leafs out in a basal rosette, and like other members of the mustard family (Brassicaceae), its tender greens are edible. Though the flowers can be tough to chew, the tender leaves are suitable for a chic microgreens salad and have tons of vitamin C, calcium, magnesium, beta-carotene, and antioxidants.

A warning – try to pull up all the plants before they flower and go to seed, or you’ll be sorry.

This information is from the Brooklyn Botanical Garden.(not the last paragraph – that’s original Kathy Winters!)

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Hug your sweetie.

Give your kids a hug and tell them how great they are and how much you love them – even if you don’t always! It means more to them than you’ll ever know!

Warning about renewing your passport

US Passport Invite (Blank) - Arts & Entertainment - Party &...My passport expired, so I went online and found a company called PassportUS. It looked very official. I paid $38 on-line to them. I filled out their form, added a photo and my expired passport and mailed it to passport services. It was returned to me, saying no fees were included.

I called PassportUSA to find out what happened. Turns out they are a private company and have nothing to do with our government. After I complained about losing my money, the woman who I talked to is going to refund my money.

This is just a warning not to make the same mistake.

Gouger Cellars Wins 3 Medals

The results of the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition were released recently. Gouger Cellars entered three wines and received three medals. Over 7000 wines were entered in this well-respected competition.

Gouger Cellars received a Bronze medal for their 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon (not yet bottled), the 2013 Zinfandel received a GOLD medal and the 2014 Syrah received a DOUBLE GOLD!

Gary Gouger, owner/winemaker, opened Gouger Cellars in 2009 after graduation from Adelaide University, Australia, with a degree in enology (winemaking). Gouger Cellars is located in a converted firehouse at 26505 NE 10th in Ridgefield and specializes in big reds and sparkling wines.

Recipe for a Happy New Year

Divide into 365 parts: Set aside, preparing one part only at a time as follows:

Mix well into each day:

1 part patience

1 part work

1 part courage

1 part faith

Add to each day:

1 part each of hope, generosity, faithfulness and kindness

Blend with:

1 part prayer

1 part meditation

1 part good deed

Season the mixture with a dash of good spirits: a sprinkle of fun, a pinch of play and a cup of good humor.

Pour the mixture into a vessel of love. Cook over radiant joy, garnish with a smile. Serve with quietness, unselfishness and cheer for 1 good year.

Thanks to Ginnie Bush for sharing this recipe.

Happy New Year

Scam Alert

Someone is making phone calls asking for donations for the American Legion. The originating phone number is: 360 572-6195. When challenged, the person usually hangs up. The call is spam – do not respond.

Posted by Tom Mccarthy, post #44, Ridgefield.

Follow up on the November Meaningful Movie

Wednesday’s showing of An Inconvenient Truth was the best attended to date due to our partnership with the Sierra Club. It really speaks to the importance of working together! If you weren’t able to attend, “An Inconvenient Sequel” is available through Amazon to rent, Red Box and Netflix’s DVD service. I highly recommend it.

Some notes from my husband, Chris Dudley, who is our discussion moderator:

“A big Thank You! To our sponsors, The Loo-Wit Sierra Club, The Ridgefield Community Library, The Ridgefield Community Group, The Old Liberty Theater, and to everyone who came out, contributed, and/or spoke up!

First, I incorrectly attributed a Freeman Dyson statement about humanity’s need to plant a billion trees to help mitigate climate change to an Albuquerque, New Mexico television reporter named Stuart Dyson. I met Stuart at a college party in the late 80s and he became a hero of mine. I’ve had some email correspondence with Freeman Dyson, the eminent theoretical physicist, over the years. Confusing the two men may seem inexcusable unless you know that both are irascible, interesting characters.

A question was asked that begs for more discussion, ‘how to get people engaged in the climate fight who have other social justice concerns that they feel they need to focus on instead.’ Our thought from the Meaningful Movies team, based on a mountain of literature, is that our changing climate will disproportionately affect people with the least resources, those suffering, those who have always suffered systemic oppression. Fighting climate change is the right thing to do from a social justice perspective because the disenfranchised face the worst consequences of global climate change.

I mentioned a Brooking’s Institution White Paper on Carbon Tax Credits. There a myriad of them. The Brooking’s Institution is a fantastic resource for policy information.

Here is NASA’s report on the gravitational pull of icebergs and what the loss of those iceberg’s may do to nearby cities and ports.

Information about the Hybrid Geothermal-Solar power plant recently installed in Nevada which Marc Rappaport designed and spoke of can be found here.

Please get in touch with Don Steinke ( to find out how you can help specifically in stopping projects that contribute to climate change and in working on policies in the schools and city governments to reduce fossil fuels. He’s out front, every day. If you realize how important this fight is but don’t know what to do, ask Don! He, and we, could really use your help and involvement. His hand-out is linked here.

I’ll be putting together an informational meeting on Marc Rappaport’s idea of building a community solar array. I have nearly zero details at this point, and am only gathering information and hoping to find those interested. Please, please text or call me 505 803 3766 or email me if you live in Ridgefield and you’re interested in learning more (unless you put your info on the sign-up list already).”

We were also so fortunate to have Brian Ettling from Citizens Climate Lobby in Portland speak briefly. If you are interested in getting involved with legislative efforts at the state and federal levels, please contact Dawn Marineau Kropp, who is involved with the Vancouver chapter at 503-830-2174 or e-mail her at

There will be no film in December. Please save the date January 24th for Tickling Giants.

Megan Dudley


Congratulations to Ridgefield Community United Methodist Church’s kitchen, that had a perfect score on the inspection from Clark County Public Health this month

Happy Thanksgiving