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Celebrating People, Places & the Good Life in SW Washington State
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Posts from — September 2010

Woman with a Repurpose: Scarves and Rugs from Pendleton Fabric and Yarns

Rebecca Weaver is a “repurposer.” Each week, at the Vancouver Farmers Market, she sells luscious rugs and woolen scarves she creates from recycled Pendleton yarns and fabric mill ends. She also creates table runners and placemats.

Rebecca Weaver at the Vancouver Farmers Market

I recently bought multiple scarves to share as gifts. You can give them as individual gifts or wrap them around other objects like soaps or candles — perfect for Made-in-the-Northwest presents. You’ll find Rebecca at the Vancouver Farmers Market throughout the fall season.

Rebecca's scarves with traditional Pendleton patterns

September 21, 2010   3 Comments

Exploring with Kids: Take a Hike to June Lake

By Sarah Coomber

Over the past two months my 5-year-old and I had completed numerous hikes but stayed pretty close to home. Sensing we were ready for an out-of-town hike, I hustled him and my husband out the door on a recent sunny Saturday morning. Destination: June Lake.

Father and son on the June Lake trail

I had learned of June Lake a couple of days earlier when The Columbian’s Allen Thomas described it as cold, clear and wading-friendly in his July 22 column on summer hikes for families. As a native of Minnesota and lover of lake country, mention of such a lake draws me like an ant to ice cream. Turns out the big bonus on this hike is the spectacular view of Mount St. Helens that regularly pops out from behind the trees. (I enjoyed it so much that I didn’t take time to take a photo of it!)

We figured the June Lake hike might be a stretch for our son—the trail is 1.4 miles each way—so we tried not to fixate on getting to the lake. But we also packed backpacks full of loot: a cashew-raisin-chocolate chip mixture (heavy on the chocolate), energy bars, turkey jerky and water. With snack breaks every 20 minutes or so and a couple of lifts on the home stretch, our junior hiker did wonderfully. Along with his dad, he napped all the way home. Our adventure, not including driving, took us a bit over two hours.

The trail climbs nearly 700 feet, from 2,710 to 3,400 feet above sea level, a steady rise but easy hiking. The lake, which is small but pretty, provides an excellent incentive and then a great break at the end of the trail. We changed into flipflops and sandals at its little beach and cooled our feet while gazing at the waterfalls on the opposite side of the lake. Also of interest is a lava flow that backs the beach and, apparently, another trail system that continues from there. More information is available at the Gifford Pinchot National Forest Web site.

We encountered several young children on the trail who seemed to be having a grand time as well, and only one who had mounted a walking protest. She made it to the lake but not happily or quietly, and her mother reported that bugs are an issue for her. I did not notice any bugginess, but in Minnesota the mosquito is our most constant companion during the warm months, so I might not be the best judge.

The trailhead for June Lake is located a little more than an hour’s drive east of Woodland, Wash., just south of the Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument. It is an out-of-the-way location, so we were surprised to find dozens of cars already there to greet us. But once we got on the trail, we had plenty of time alone in the woods. It appears there are a few other trails heading out of that parking area.

Getting there: See the Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument map.

Good to know:
• The trail is good but not stroller-friendly.
• Parking is free.

• Snack and water
• Flipflops or water shoes for the lake

September 13, 2010   No Comments

Get Out There! 4 Great September Events

It’s September. The kids are back in school. The sweaters are coming out. Where did summer go? It was far too short this year.

But the fun continues. There are lots of September events to get you out of the house. Here are four fine choices involving hot (but slow) rods, wine and shopping, living history by candlelight, and tours of art studios.

I have heard from a VERY credible source that the 10th Annual Slow Drag on September 10 “is a hoot.” Imagine 1400 old cars in Ilwaco! My source tells me “The old cars line up along Howerton Way. The drivers have to start their vehicle, get to the starting line, then turn off the car and coast all the way to the finish line (about 200 yards.) Most of them chug to a standstill and don’t make it. The crowd loves to cheer them on!”

Slow drag in Ilwaco

This is followed by the Rod Run to the End of the World in Ocean Park on September 11 and 12. Vintage car lovers, start your engines.

One of my favorite Vancouver events is the Uptown Village Sip & Stroll. You can wander through the Vancouver shops on upper Main, tasting fine wines as you go. Beers will be featured this year, too.

Sip & Stroll will be held on September 18 from 4 pm to 8:30 pm. Cost is only $25 (including a glass and shopping discounts) and proceeds will go to the Hough Foundation. A $5 ticket is available for non-alcoholic beverages. Starting point is at Cellar 55. Details and tickets here.

Fort Vancouver offers wonderful events year-round. One of the best is the Campfires and Candlelight Tour, a tour of the Fort at night including re-enactments, period costumes and soldiers in uniform from past decades. It’s a photogenic event and great for all ages.

Sewing at Campfires and Candlelight in 2009

The baker making hardtack

The event is September 18, from 3 to 10 pm. Where else can you tour an historic landmark by candlelight. Admission charges and other info available at the Fort Vancouver Web site.

Finally, ARTrails of Southwest Washington is happening on two weekends – September 18-19 and September 25-26. You can wander through the countryside around Chehalis and Centralia visiting artists studios. Sounds blissful to me!

The tour opens with a Gala Reception on Friday, September 17 from 4 to 8 pm at the Exhibition Gallery in downtown Centralia’s Historic Train Depot (210 Railway Avenue). Studio guides will be available then, as well as rest of the weekends. Artwork includes paintings, sculpture, glass, jewelry, pottery, mixed media, fiber art, carved wood, basketry, enameling, collage, and much more. Nearly 60 artists will be participating. You can see samples of their stunning artwork here. No admission fee!

Those are only a few of the events coming up. Looking for more ideas? Check out the Event Calendar of the Vancouver USA Regional Tourism Office. The rains will be starting soon enough. Go enjoy September!

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September 5, 2010   No Comments