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Today is Memorial Day

Memorial Day is a federal holiday in the United States for remembering and honoring people who have died while serving in the United States Armed Forces .The holiday is observed on the last Monday of May. Memorial Day was observed on May 30 from 1868 to 1971.

Memorial Day is considered the unofficial start of the summer vacation season in the United States.
Many people visit cemeteries and memorials on Memorial Day, particularly to honor those who died in military service. Many volunteers place an American flag on each grave in national cemeteries.

Two other days celebrate those who serve or have served in the U.S. military: Veterans Day, which celebrates the service of all U.S. military veterans;[4] and Armed Forces Day, a minor U.S. remembrance celebrated earlier in May, specifically honoring those currently serving in the U.S. military. Information from Wikipedia

Two services will be held today in Ridgefield: The American Legion will host a program at the Ridgefield Cemetery from 9:30 – 10:30 am and there will be a service at Northwood Park Funeral Home and Cemetery at 11 am.

Thought for the Week

Memorial Day Service

Northwood Park Funeral Home and Cemetery will host a Memorial Day Observance on Monday, May 27th at 11 am. Northwood Park is at 16407 Ne 15th Avenue in Ridgefield.

There will be Military Honors by the Battle Ground AFJROTC, patriotic music, and Chaplain Tom Yates will speak. The Patriot Guard Riders will also be on hand as we pause to remember our Veterans.

Police Officers Read to Students

Police officers are showing up at school libraries—to read books to students.  Union Ridge Elementary School uses the readings as a reward for good behavior, and students are really enjoying the chance to meet the officers.

Sergeant Cathy Doriot and Officer Jason Ferriss visit Ms. Sullens’ kindergarten class at Union Ridge Elementary.

Positive Behavioral Interventions and Support is a positive reward system used district-wide to encourage and teach positive behavior.  At Union Ridge Elementary School, students earn Tater Bucks tickets when they follow the three R’s:  Respect, Responsibility, and Resilience.  Then students can use the Tater Bucks for prizes and drawings of their choice.  There are also bonus awards an entire classroom can earn, including a recess award, lunchroom award, and library award.

Librarian Jubilee Roth explained the program with the Ridgefield Police Department.  “I select two classes a month that have shown the three R’s in the library, and they earn a visit from a police officer who reads them a story during library class.”  The students get the chance to meet a police officer one on one, and it also rewards the classes for good behavior.

The police officers read a story, then lead questions and answers.  The students can ask about the book, information about police work, or even personal likes and dislikes.

Sergeant Cathy Doriot and Officer Jason Ferriss are working the library beat in addition to their regular duties.  So if you see a police car parked at the school, the officer might be in the library, happily reading Dr. Seuss to a room full of students.





Save the Date!

Britnee Kellogg will perform at a cash-back evening at 3Peaks on June 29 that benefits the library. She’s a local celebrity who had a nice writeup in the Columbian not too long ago.

A percentage of your bill will be donated to the Ridgefield Library for their building campaign between 5 and 10 pm, and Ms. Kellogg will be there from 6 to 8.

It should be a fun evening of country music with good food from Pacific NW Best Fish next door. Members of the Friends of the Ridgefield Library will be bussing tables, so give them your ‘thanks’ for the yeoman’s work they been doing in raising money for the last five years.


A Thank You from the Garden Club

One Small Step…

Tonight at the Meaningful Movie, “Living in the Future’s Past,” Phuong Tran of Lava Java announced they are no longer serving straws with their drinks. She said the response has been overwhelmingly supportive among her younger customers, while the older people are lukewarm about the idea.

If we all made one small ecologically correct change in our live styles, imagine what a better world it would be!


Memorial Day Ceremony

Ridgefield American Legion Post 44 will put on a Memorial Day ceremony at the Ridgefield Cemetery from 9:30-10:30am on Monday, May 27th.

This is always an inspiring event and well worth bringing the whole family to honor our service people.

The Cemetery is on Cemetery Road just off 9th (Hillhurst).

A Look Back: National Geographic World Brought Ridgefield Students to Mount St. Helens Blast Zone

Many people remember the Mount St. Helens eruption.  But not many people remember leading a group of students through protected areas of the mountain in the years following the eruption.  Longtime Ridgefield resident Allene Wodaege did exactly that, taking a group of Ridgefield students to the blast zone area with a team from National Geographic World magazine.

Thirty-nine years ago, on May 18, 1980, Mount St. Helens erupted.  For years after the eruption, some areas around the volcano were off limits to the public.  When National Geographic World, a magazine for young people, wanted to visit and take pictures of students in the blast zone, they called ahead to find area students who would be willing to go.  Allene Wodaege, who was a coordinator for the nearby Cispus camp at the time, was happy to help.  She coordinated a group of Ridgefield students to take a bus up the mountain with the writer and photographer.

Wodaege & students in restricted Mount St. Helens blast zone. National Geographic World photo.

“No one could go up,” she explained.  “It was closed.  It was really closed at that time.”  She worked with the principal and with fifth grade teacher Ron Ward to get a bus and several students to accompany them on the journey.  The National Geographic photo with Wodaege and the students looks like a black and white picture with only the children’s clothes in color; even many months after the eruption, the entire area was dead and covered in ash.

Teacher Ron Ward took the students near Meta Lake to observe the wildlife that had lived through the blast.  Wodaege said, “Because the lake was covered with ice and snow when it blew, it didn’t kill everything in the lake and around it.  But you can see how devastated everything was.  Ron Ward came up with little tasks that the kids could do while they were up there so they could have a learning experience.”  The photos show students Nathan Schwarz and Troy McIntyre holding a crawfish they found in the lake, and Ward taking water samples.

The Columbian newspaper arranged a meeting between Ward and Wodaege, more than 35 years after their trip with the students.  The article by Jeffrey Mize features Wodaege and Ward, celebrating their shared experience and the anniversary of the eruption.  The article can be found at:

Wodaege has been an outspoken advocate for the importance of Cispus outdoor school and outdoor learning for nearly fifty years.  While some people might have seen danger taking students so close to an eruption zone, she saw a chance to learn about how nature recovers from a once-in-a-lifetime natural event.  Each year, she took students to Cispus outdoor school, not far from Mount St. Helens, to study the ecosystem and its changes.  “I said, ‘It’s a learning experience; it’s going to be wonderful,” Wodaege said.  “And it was.”

Ron Ward and students studying Meta Lake wildlife. National Geographic World magazine photo.


Allene Wodaege speaks with Jeffrey Mize of The Columbian about the Mount St. Helens trip.

R-BIZ Networking

This month’s Ridgefield Chamber of Commerce networking event, R-BIZ, is tomorrow, Tuesday, May 21 at Ridgefield Mini Storage, 7555 South Union Ridge Parkway, from 5 to 7 pm. Come and network with other business people in our community.

Meaningful Movie

This month’s Meaningful Movie on Wednesday, May 22, is a beautiful film: “Living in Future’s Past.”

It is the story of human’s place in the world and how we can address the changing planet. Our guest speakers are Steve Stuart, Ridgefield City Manager and Roben White, “artivist” who focuses on Native Rights, the environment, human rights and labor. We are excited to learn about the City of Ridgefield’s ideas for planning in the face of a changing environment and all of the work that Mr. White has been doing. Just last week, Mr. White served on the Green New Deal panel discussion.

Hope to see you Wednesday. Doors open at the Old Liberty Theater at 6:15, previews start at 6:45, film at 7, discussion to follow film. The movie is free, but donations are gratefully accepted.

Thought for the Week

A Continuation…

Your children get only one childhood.

All that truly matters in the end is that you loved.

Get outside every day. Miracles are waiting everywhere.

If we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else’s, we’d grab ours back.

Envy is a waster of time. You already have all you need.

The best is yet to come.

No matter how you feel, get up, dress up and show up.

Life isn’t tied with a bow, but it’s still a gift.

Friends are the family we chose for ourselves.

Volcano Art Liquidating Inventory

Volcano Art is holding an open house and liquidation sale this Wednesday, May 22 from noon to 3pm. They have all kinds of concrete benches, plaques, stepping stones, wall hangings, statues, and honey.

Address is 2201 Carty Road. Weather is supposed to be dry and partly sunny, so come see their wide selection of unique art.

Buyer Beware

Have you bought coffee recently? You may be getting lees than you thought.

The container on the right weighs 1 lb 15 oz, and the ‘new look’ container on the right contains only 1 lb. of coffee.

The lids are the same size and the shape of the containers is the same, but the newer box is about an inch shorter and contains about half as much coffee.

What a ripoff!


People are starting to bring back their Pig Food jars – this young lady even took the empty jar home with her and  said her family will re-fill it and bring it back.

If you haven’t seen Priscilla at the library yet, she’s worth a trip. She’s the pink pig we’ve named after the Priscilla Club, a group of women who donated books to start the first Ridgefield Library.

Priscilla is trying to raise money for the new library by having people put their spare change in a jar that’s labeled “Pig Food.”

There are packets that you can pick up at the library to make your own jar for Priscilla’s Pig Food. Bring them back when full, or before November 15. On that day we’ll seal the carboy and folks will have a chance to guess how much money is in the jar.

Chances will cost $1 for children up to 15 years old, and $5 for 16 and up. The child who comes closest to the correct amount will win $25 and the adult who comes closest will win half the money raised for the contest, minus the $25 child’s prize.

The contest will close at noon on December 7, and the winners will be announced sometime after that.

You can buy as many chances as you want.

There are still a few spaces left for the Bunco Blast tomorrow, Saturday, May 18. It starts at 5:30 in the Community Room of the Library. Come and bring a couple of friends! It’s going to be a lot of fun!