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The appalling death of George Floyd in Minneapolis recently is yet another horrible reminder of the extent of racial and societal inequity in America. It follows the horrific slayings of Breonna Taylor (fatally shot by police in Louisville on March 23) and of Ahmaud Arbery (fatally shot by a…

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Today I woke up early to read and do some writing in the “sun room”, only today it’s the “rain room”.

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I have lights on my house year round, just to perk us up during our sometimes-gloomy weather. I love it when we pull up in the dark of the night and our house is glowing with lights. Depending on the time of year, I add different color lights to my white lights. I use green lights for St. Pa…

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Oregon Department of Human Services (DHS) is providing additional food dollars for families with school age children who qualify for free school lunch. If the family of such a child was receiving SNAP (food stamp) benefits when schools closed March 13, $384 will be automatically added to the…

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If you have not completed your 2020 Census, please do so. Online it only took me a few minutes, verifying my address and the number of people residing at that address. The latest information I have seen to date shows Tillamook County at a little over 30% completion rate. Letters were mailed …

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It was a quiet morning fishing on Tillamook Bay when I got an alert on my cell phone from Kathy Burke: dead whale washing ashore on Bayocean Spit! Captain Pete and I hurriedly reeled in, hustled home and headed out to the beach. About a mile and a half north of our little village, we saw the…

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In these unprecedented times, I found myself reflecting more and more on the importance of tradition. Our great nation is rooted in many wonderful traditions. They bind us together, they strengthen us. They provide structure to our lives. They give meaning to the sacrifices that have been ma…

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What a fabulous Mothers’ Day I had. I hope all you ladies had as much fun as me. Normally, I would have had a picnic/ukulele jam at our house, but this year, well, you know, everything is a bit different. But, that’s okay. I will just appreciate everything in my life that much more, when thi…

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Kate Brown has approved Tillamook County’s application to enter Phase I post Covid, effective last Friday. This does not mean that we return to pre-Covid conditions.  The virus will be with us until an approved treatment or prevention is available. We still need to practice physical distanci…

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Greetings Bay City!  Our state is opening slowly.  Most of us, I’m sure, feel like a horse in the starting gate before the race.  That’s how many of the tourists feel.  They just want to be at the beach, or trail, or river….anywhere but home!  I can’t blame them.  We live in paradise, and th…

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Let’s start out this week’s column with a rousing cheer for Pete Steen: Seaview neighborhood disaster preparedness captain, good friend to many in Cape Meares and beyond, fanatical outdoorsman, grandfather par excellence to 11 grandchildren, fabulous father to five and father-in-law to four,…

I am so deeply disappointed to find that I live in a community that does not take the coronavirus seriously.  The few times I have ventured out, I see the majority of people not wearing masks or observing physical distancing practices. Given all the issues we face in our community (a high le…

Caring for and losing a loved one is never easy, but COVID-19 has only made it more difficult. But those of us living in Tillamook County are fortunate, for there are angels among us masquerading as Home Health and Hospice workers. They made my 94 year old father’s wish to remain at home til…

We have known Gordon McCraw since shortly after he and his family moved here from New Orleans.

I’m speaking of Commissioner David Yamamoto.  I give this endorsement from a person who has been there and done that for the twelve years I had the distinct privilege and honor to serve as a Tillamook County Commissioner.  Best job in the world and I believe David thinks that too.  Yep, he’s…

I was disappointed to read your article in this weeks paper. It was an interesting read until you took a swipe at your opponent. That is so unnecessary and says more negativity about you than him. Please try to have a clean race.

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Perks of quarantine. I like this segment. Last week I mentioned what Anne and Scott from Rockaway Beach are doing for fun, but I have gotten messages from all over the nation. This week, my friend Bonnie, from Redmond, has been dotting mandalas on rocks. I had to look that up. Loosely transl…

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Thanks to Nancy Whitehead for writing with word that HeboLane Little Library is open to all.  It’s located just a block off U.S. Highway 101 in Hebo, on South Hebo Lane.  Coming from either direction, you turn onto South Hebo Lane, which is on the same side of the highway as the Hebo Post Of…

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Happy day after Cinco de Mayo! Margaritas and Mexican beer along with chips and salsa here at our house; hope you did something to celebrate.

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Greetings Bay City! I keep a Mutts comic strip by Patrick McDonnell on my desk. Its an “endangered species” list of virtues: empathy, compassion, kindness, integrity, humanity, goodwill….; It goes on to list a total of 26 virtues that would make the world a better place.

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Thanks to all those essential workers who keep us going, knowing they may be putting themselves in harm’s way by doing so.

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Each weekend Maggie (the Chihuahua) and I run local errands; we visited Monkey Business 101 last weekend. I needed to replace a rhubarb plant that didn’t survive the winter. Barbara Brown, who owns the nursery (located just north of Brooten Road off of U.S. Highway 101), is open her regular …

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I have a special request for a special program in Rockaway Beach. The Meals for Seniors had to cancel one of their fundraisers, due to this nasty virus we are experiencing. They can definitely use some donations at this time. Donations can be sent to Meals for Seniors INC. PO Box 852, Rockaw…

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Greetings Bay City! I’m writing this week’s Fencepost from our sun room, the best room in the house.

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Preppers, unite! Check out the MIT Technology Review article posted April 15, 2020, entitled “They Were Waiting for the Big One; Then Coronavirus Arrived.” Yes, it’s about Oregon’s north coast preparing for our eventual earthquake and tsunami and how that ultimately gave us a leg up on COVID…

Ninety-five percent of my votes in the last 50+ years have been cast for the most qualified conservative candidate. This election, for County Commissioner, I am casting my vote for Dave McCall, because I feel he is the most qualified candidate, regardless of political affiliation.

As a retired Tillamook County Commissioner and life-long resident, I have always cared deeply about our county. It was very comforting for me to have Mary Faith Bell take my place on the County Commission. Now we have another wonderful opportunity.

We fully support Erin Skaar in her bid for County Commissioner Position 1. We have know Erin for nearly 20 years and have always been impressed by her interest in making our community a better place for all of us to call home.

Fulcrum Community Resources, Manzanita Visitor’s Center and others have been working to put a campaign together for the benefit of our local small businesses and self-employed residents who are in dire need at this time.  We are asking for your help.  Can you make a donation, small or large …

While there is a lot riding on the national elections in November, we also have pressing issues here at home and an important election in May. I’m working to ensure that a majority of the Tillamook County Board of Commissioners takes North County concerns into account for a change.

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Normally in mid to late April, I write to remind readers about the Tillamook County Master Gardener Association’s annual Plant Sale held the first Saturday in May. This is a big fundraiser for the organization and helps subsidize the Learning Garden and many other classes and activities to t…

Just four months ago, Manzanita voters surprised City Council with a resounding NO to Council’s plan for a new City Hall building with 30 year bond funding. In response, Council members pledged to listen to citizens’ concerns and reformulate their plan to move City Hall with an expensive pla…

Concurrently with the coronavirus public health emergency that is going on, many people who live in rural communities near the Oregon Coast are also concerned about their ongoing exposure to smoke and pesticide spray. One concern is the smoke and pesticide spray caused by outdated industrial…

This is a very stressful time for healthcare personnel, they’re on the frontlines of an unprecedented public health crisis, putting their own health at risk in order to care for ours. I would like to shout out to local healthcare providers as the heroes they are.

After hurricane-force winds isolated our region for over a week 12 years ago, we had no organized community mechanism to respond. From that incident, the Emergency Volunteer Corps of Nehalem Bay was formed. Fast forward to today — EVCNB has grown to become a critical component of preparednes…

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April 1 was Census Day nationwide. Because my home doesn’t qualify for mail delivery, I received no postcard inviting me to participate. Nevertheless, we know that everyone counts. An accurate count is important so that we on the rural Oregon coast get our share of representation in national…

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Thanks to all the medical professionals and first responders manning the front lines in this pandemic. A special shout-out to those from Cape Meares: Dr. Jennifer Hedden; nurses Jeanne Lopinski, Jenny Francis, Karen Widmer, Rachel Beard, and Sandra and Danella Acosta; home health care aide A…

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Birthdays! That’s always fun!! I would like to wish a very happy April birthday to all that have a birthday this month. I have a few names I will mention, but greetings go out to all! Happy birthday Carla McGillivray, Cheryl Buxton Meyer, Nancy Geesey,  Debee Moody, Brian Reynolds, Joey Kamm…

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If there was ever a time we need to be in the garden, its now. And if you have never considered trying to plant seeds and growing some of your own veggies, that time has come as well.

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I am normally a very positive person, but this pandemic has me battling both joy and sorrow. I figure if I have this inner battle going on, many of you do too. I try to keep busy, painting, cleaning, praying and taking long walks, away from anyone else. I think one can still make something b…

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Greetings Bay City. I am so impressed with the Bay City Arts Center! In the middle of the pandemic they are offering creative and unique programs and classes. Especially at this time, they continue to find ways to bring the arts to our community. They have now unveiled the Covid-19 Art Initiative

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It seems, since Covid-19 hit, like the first matter of business here each week is corrections. I’ve learned that, along with the many Pacific City restaurants listed last week, Grateful Bread offers drive through service for the duration of the pandemic. Their phone number is 503-965-7337 an…

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Congratulations to Sue and Jack Drafahl! Their book “Discovery” won honorable mention for the Reader Views Reviewers Choice 2020 award. This stay-at-home pandemic period affords us a perfect time to read. You can order “Discovery” or any of the Drafahls’ books on Amazon; check it out.

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Well, we have been voted off the island. As I begin my column, we are packing to fly back home from Maui three weeks early. If we don’t leave now, we would have to stay for months in our Ohana. No walks, no swimming, no nothing. All will be closed down tomorrow.  My biggest worry is getting …

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Several times in recent weeks I’ve smiled to myself as I’ve accessed needed items from my 72 hour kit. The Covid 19 pandemic has many of us scrambling for supplies that we took for granted just weeks ago. The kit came together a week at a time, at this time last year, as I recorded my progre…

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The Cape Meares Community Association (CMCA) board announced the closure of the Barbara Bennett Community Center until the State of Oregon once again gives permission for social gatherings. This means not only end-of-the-month potlucks, but various clubs/groups who usually meet at BBCC (the …