Fear and Loathing in the Smokies

first_imgAn author reveals the dark side of the Smokies—and her psyche. “You’re not going to find a dead body out here,” says Dave Landreth, a salty, retirement-aged hiker, while sliding down a steep rockslide inside Great Smoky Mountains National Park. “There are too many wild boars. They’ll take a corpse apart and won’t leave a skeleton.”It’s a disturbing conversation to have when you’re beginning an off-trail bushwhack, but that’s the frame of mind we’re all in thanks to our trip leader, Jenny Bennett. Bennett is the author of the recent novel, Murder at the Jump Off, a murder mystery that, not coincidentally, is set in the exact terrain we’re about to explore.Luckily, the victim in Bennett’s book isn’t devoured by wild boar. His body is found relatively intact, neck snapped, a thousand feet below the Jump Off, a rocky outcropping with views of Charles Bunion, Mount Guyot, and a large swath of rugged land that has no official trail.That trail-less landscape is where most of the best action of Bennett’s novel is set—a location thick with unforgivably steep slopes, rock slide scars, and brutal patches of rhododendron and briars. That’s also where Bennett is taking us in an attempt to recreate the exact route that Bennett’s victim explored before he was murdered.Murder at the Jump Off coverMorbid? Maybe a little. But we’re talking about a murder-mystery writer here.We drop off the Appalachian Trail via the Porter’s Creek Manway, an old path that settlers once used to connect remote homesteads that has long since overgrown from lack of use. After dropping about a grand of elevation, our plan is to climb back up to the ridge line via the left fork of Lester Prong, which will deliver us to the Jump Off, where Bennett’s fictional victim is murdered.One of the joys of reading Murder at the Jump Off is the fact that the setting is real. Not only is the landscape vividly described in a way that only Bennett could describe it, you can go there.Bennett’s novel is made up of two kinds of people: avid bushwhackers obsessed with hiking off-trail, and their loved ones/loathed ones who don’t understand their obsession with bushwhacking. It’s a pretty fair assessment of off-trail hiking in general. You’re either obsessed with it or confounded by it. Add the remote nature of the Smokies (500,000 acres with only a couple of roads traversing it), and you have the recipe for a good murder.Bennett says the book is actually based on a relationship she saw developing between two off-trail hikers that she felt was going south. “I could see how it could turn homicidal,” she tells me as we make our way down Porter’s Creek, a skinny drop-and-pool drainage covered in moss and blowdowns.From that tenuous relationship, Bennett used her bushwhacking experience and love for the Smokies to build a fun, fast murder mystery that is largely set in the most unlikely of places–the jagged, steep drainages that drop vertically from popular tourist attractions like the Jump Off. If you think a jagged, steep gorge is an odd place to dream up a fictional murder, you’ll be absolutely astounded that such a heinous crime could come from the mind of Jenny Bennett, who could be best described as your bookish next door neighbor who spends all of her free time gardening in her backyard or tending to her cats.Bennett is a freelance book editor who is either reading, hiking, or blogging in her spare time. She wears glasses and keeps her grayish hair in a tight ponytail beneath a sensible hat. She’s pushing 60, says things like “goodness,” and has knee problems. But she also tells stories about running away from home in an attempt to live in Haight Ashbury when she was 16. She may come off as timid, but she spends much of her free time bushwhacking through creeks and rock slides by herself. She’s hell with a map and compass and leads off-trail hikes for the Smoky Mountains Hiking Club. The more I hike with Bennett, the stronger I realize she is. I also discover that she’s just dark enough to develop the murder plot at the heart of Murder at the Jumpoff.When I ask her if her hiking partners ever worry about the fact that she was planning a murder plot during all of their off-trail adventures, she smiles and tells me, “Everyone’s really nice to me now.”We make it down Porter’s Creek with ease, but the route gets tougher when we start making our way up Lester Prong. The slope gets steeper the farther we climb, and eventually we find ourselves on a vertical rock slide that’s been overgrown with slick moss. The only safe option we have is to turn around, a decision that will likely result in us hiking out of the Smokies well after dark.Bennett isn’t phased by the new development. Maybe it’s because she’s been in the woods often enough to know that spending the night unexpectedly is sometimes part of the process. Or maybe it’s because she enjoys the added challenge and chance to experience something, some place new…in the dark.“To me, off-trail hiking is a magical journey, a quest to discover incredible places that practically no one ever sees,” she tells me days after we made the slow, dark climb out of Lester Prong. “It does tend to be an obsession, because it can be so difficult that you wouldn’t be motivated to do it unless you are kind of crazed.”Backyard BooksFew books will put you into the thick of the Smokies backcountry like Murder at the Jumpoff, but if you want more literature set in the Southern Appalachians, check out these new titles.Naked Came the Leaf Peeper This novel was written by 12 different Western North Carolina authors. Sounds schizophrenic, but the murder-mystery set in Asheville works in a way that only a murder mystery set in Asheville can.The Cove, Ron Rash Set in Western North Carolina after World War II, The Cove mixes mountain lore with mountain topography for good old fashioned Southern Gothic charm.Nightwoods, Charles FrazierA suspenseful novel set in small town North Carolina during the 1960s in which a guardian has to protect two small children from their stepfather. Sidenote: Frazier is an avid and talented mountain biker.last_img read more

2006 SUMMIT COVERAGE: Pandemic could cripple routine health services

first_img Teeter cited an estimate that a pandemic could kill 11,000 people in Seattle in 6 weeks, well above the usual toll in a year. In talking about the threat, she said, “You just have to be kind of plain-spoken and out there for the public.” Feb 15, 2006 (CIDRAP News) – A major influenza pandemic would make it very difficult for the US healthcare system to maintain routine services, a reality that few Americans are aware of, a public health official said at a preparedness conference in Minneapolis today. “You balance the business continuity and the general health of the community,” Teeter said. “People will have to understand there will be a very different [healthcare] system in place,” she said. “If you don’t tell them the truth, I think we’ll have a huge social unrest problem.” “We have a whole team working on triage, self-care, and telephonic consultations,” among other approaches for maintaining services to special populations in that situation, Teeter said. Editor’s Note: This article was updated Aug 16, 2006, to correct a potentially misleading statement in the 3rd-to-last paragraph regarding Seattle residents’ concerns. “I don’t think Americans are the least bit prepared” for the potential effects on the health system, said Dorothy Teeter, interim director of public health for Seattle and King County, Wash. She was part of a panel at a national meeting on business preparedness for pandemic flu.center_img Teeter said her department has assembled a coalition of healthcare organizations “to work on what the healthcare system would look like” during a pandemic, when hospitals and clinics could be overwhelmed by thousands of seriously ill patients. The pandemic threat has Seattle residents asking questions about ideas that may sound extreme, according to Teeter. For example, some have asked about the community’s ability to handle a surge in victims from a pandemic flu, and if they will need to bury bodies in their backyards. King County has also set up groups to work with the business community and with public officials on pandemic preparedness, Teeter reported. The business group has discussed issues such as school closings. Business leaders said they would like a couple of days’ warning if the county decides to close schools, because many parents then would need to stay home to care for their children, she said. The business preparedness conference was sponsored by the University of Minnesota Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy (CIDRAP), publisher of the CIDRAP Web site, along with the US and Minnesota Chambers of Commerce. She also said the county is stockpiling oseltamivir (Tamiflu) to help maintain the healthcare workforce. “We’re not thinking about prophylactic use, because there’s not enough Tamiflu,” she said. “But we are going to be prepositioning Tamiflu. . . . We’ve been able to buy Tamiflu over and above normal use.”last_img read more

Google is becoming a stronger player in the online travel agency scene

first_imgWhy not use Google when planning a trip and searching for a hotel? There are many more reviews and photos taken by users in Google’s hotel search redesign. Also, they can access guest reviews from Booking, Expedition and TripAdvisor, and from now on they have the ability to view user photos of hotels and rooms, not just promotional ones. “Google balances the user experience with the content of accommodation providers much better, which is great news for us hoteliers. This could, along with platforms like Fliggy and Airbnb’s acquisition of HotelTonight, shake things up in the world of online travel planning“, Concluded Chetan Patel, Vice President of Strategic Marketing and E-Commerce for Onyx Hospitality Group. Example of searching through Google Hotel Search Alternative accommodation among the results Search filters With its booking service, Google is moving towards the idea of ​​becoming a quasi-online travel agency. However, Google does not offer, for example, cancellations, but only reservations and ways to pay for accommodation by credit card or Google Pay. So, with the strengthening of Google booking, many users will prefer to make all their travel-related purchases directly through Google. When you click on a photo of a hotel in Google search, it redirects you to a page at the top of which, just below the photos of the accommodation, are the hotel name, address, categorization, phone number and a link to the official page. But consider the links highlighted in blue (DEAL $ 88, 17% less than usual) on the example of Yotel New York in the image above. These links do not redirect to the hotel website, but to Google Hotel Search. Google’s “homage” to HotelTonight There are many new attractive settings in the redesign. For example, from now on you can search for hotels by user ratings, budget amount options, luxury and the like. User generated photos and reviews The first two sentences of user reviews appear on Google, and when users click on it, it redirects them to the web page where it is located. Example of hotel accommodation on Google Hotel Search / Skift Google Hotel Search is a “double-edged sword” for hoteliers Pretty nice and intuitive design Google still prefers its own hotel search and booking feature to the detriment of competitors ’businesses. That has not changed. Paid ads are at the top of the accommodation search, and organic links are at the bottom of the page. Search results are sorted by paid ads Over the past few years, Google has experimented with hotel reservations on behalf of online travel agencies and hotel partners, but would have to spend hours searching for accommodation. It is easier to visit the online accommodation reservation service directly. In the redesign of the entire hotel search and accommodation reservation, there are more views while browsing the hotel via Google booking, reports Shift. The redesign contains photos of hotels and destinations, but also Google Maps with hotel prices, visible in Google search results. The design is quite attractive. Here are seven features of Google Hotel Search. “We are developing the way our hotel search engine works on smartphones to help customers search for options and make decisions on mobile phones. The new hotel search experience includes better price filtering, easier information on offers, and the ability to book directly from Google”, Said Eric Zimmerman, director of product management for Google’s travel, in an earlier blog. Although quite complicated, Google’s booking competitors, such as Expedition, Booking, and TripAdvisor, don’t benefit from free links on Google to the extent they had in previous years, but they still make money as paid advertisers in the Google Hotel Search app. Google explains in its blog that it also offers a filter for private accommodation in the search engine. A message may pop up for users: “Private accommodation is also available for the period you have selected.” Google has thus become a full-fledged accommodation booking service and has potential implications for booking sites like Airbnb. On the other hand, Google claims that they are only trying to improve the user experience of the search, and that hotels, which appear at the top of search results, appear there organically. Richard Holden, vice president of travel product management for Google, wrote about the new features of Google Hotels Search in a blog post last week and subtly mentioned the development of a complete hotel meta-search page and accommodation booking engine. There is even a new hotel search filter “for tonight” in Google’s redesign. When a user selects that filter and selects a hotel, Google automatically selects today’s arrival date and tomorrow’s departure date, making it easier for the user to search for overnight accommodation. Users can then book a hotel in two ways: by going to that hotel’s website, or by booking directly from Google through companies that partner with Google, such as Orbitz or Travelocity.last_img read more

Letters to the Editor for Sunday, Jan. 12

first_imgDestroying cultural sites is a war crimeOn Jan. 4, President Donald Trump tweeted that if Iran retaliates for the targeted killing of Maj. Gen. Qassem Soleimani, America will target sites important to Iranian culture.Let me be clear: It is a war crime to target cultural sites, according to the 1954 Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict. The United States is a party to that convention, meaning we must abide by it.The United Nations also regards destroying cultural sites as a war crime (U.N. Security Council Resolution 2347).War crimes are illegal under federal law (18 U.S. Code § 2441). The punishment is being “fined under this title or imprisoned for life or any term of years, or both, and if death results to the victim, shall also be subject to the penalty of death.”If President Trump goes through with his threat and attacks those cultural sites, he is a war criminal. Plain and simple.Daniel Wade IIIRound LakeMany share blame for Trump’s failuresWe need to get serious about climate change. We need to eradicate hate crimes and poverty. We need to build alliances, roads, bridges, healthcare systems and schools. Instead, we find ourselves in a useless fossil-fuel-sucking war that will kill, maim, destroy and deplete resources.Who is the most irresponsible?The 45th president? The military, which gave him an option it knew was terrible? (You don’t give a loaded gun to a baby and expect a good outcome.)  Or the American public and politicians who didn’t put an end to this presidency when they had a chance?Melinda PerrinNiskayunaWe all must learn to embrace differencesEvery year, people would like to accomplish some goals for the new year.Well I have a goal that I would like to see happen, not just in this new year, but year-around.This goal is that we as a human race need to understand that we are a very extraordinary human race and we all have our differences. We need to embrace them and learn from them instead of attacking each other.We are killing all of us with this hate. And yes, both sides, the left and the right, are at fault for all the hate that has been going around.But I strongly feel that if we as an extraordinary human race can embrace and accept our many differences, we can heal this nation and world. This is a goal that I would really like to see happen, not just this new year, but year-round.Anthony CarotaSchenectadyMore from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: No more extensions on vehicle inspectionsEDITORIAL: Take a role in police reformsHIGH NOTES: PPEs, fighting hunger, backpacks and supplies for kidsEDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationFoss: Schenectady Clergy Against Hate brings people together Categories: Letters to the Editor, OpinionProps to Cuomo for canal, rail initiativesI rarely find any merit in Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s initiatives, but I believe in giving credit where it’s due.Although it pains me, I compliment him on his recently announced initiatives: re-imagining the Erie Canal and high-speed rail between New York City and Buffalo.The Erie Canal made New York “the Empire State.” Making the Erie Canal economically and recreationally relevant, and high-speed rail along the same corridor, could re-invigorate the dead and dying Rust Belt communities along the way. They called the Erie Canal “Clinton’s Folly” when Gov. Clinton proposed it.When completed, it not only transformed New York but extended our country’s frontier westward, opening up new markets and opportunity. Good transportation does that. If you’ve lived in the Capital District long enough, I’m sure you marvel at what I-87 has done to Clifton Park and points north. Don’t give up, Andrew.Having said that, now that I have your ear, I’d like to add that Mr. Cuomo’s unwillingness to extend the authority to perform marriage ceremonies to federal judges simply because they represent the Trump administration is petty, spiteful, childish and vindictive. Behavior like this (not to mention the SAFE Act) is why I regard him as a jerk.George NigrinyGlenvilleRight on red isn’t mandatory, so chillI am the driver of a small Honda, and I choose to turn right on red when I think it is safe for me, my passengers and pedestrians.Due to the size of my car, it is difficult to see around snowbanks, larger cars and SUVs. Sometimes I will sit at a light until it is green in my favor.During these short waits, there have been more frequent displays of flashing lights, blaring horns and finger messages. I look at your face in my rearview mirror and you look so angry and wretched that I almost feel sorry for you.Draw a deep breath, count to 10, send mental good wishes to a friend. Before you know it, this little car will be safely on its way and so will you. Turning on red is not mandatory — it is a choice.Louise FarnumMaltalast_img read more

S. Africans reluctant to return to places of worship despite lockdown easing

first_imgTopics : ‘Not yet time’ Lockdown forced tech savvy South Africans to seek out online worship, challenging the ordinary and mundane nature of many religious services.”I’ve been streaming different sermons online… at first it was weird but now I am used to it,” said 22-year old Ntokozo Zulu, a devoted Christian living with her elderly mother. “It’s a way to make sure that I still keep in touch with God,” she said adding that for some people religion was a lifeline.”I can bet people needed that close relationship with God during this tough coronavirus lockdown.”But the reopening of places of worship has sparked controversy with religious leaders themselves perplexed on how to resume safely.In a letter to parishioners, clergy and bishops of the Anglican church, Archbishop Thabo Makgoba said there was a consensus that “it is not yet time to resume worship”.He said preliminary reports had shown many dioceses and parishes had raised concerns including the return of pensioners and clergy over 60-years old, what to do if more than 50 congregants arrive and how to respond if congregants begin singing or mingling spontaneously.Calling for further engagement with the South African Council of Churches and the state, the archbishop said it would take time to gather the data needed before a decision to resume Anglican services can be made.Even the Zion Christian Church, South Africa’s largest operating church, has opted not to resume services despite the easing of restrictions.  “Our first service was today… we didn’t have as many of our congregation members as usual,” Pastor Sylvain Malindhva of Peniel ministries told AFP. “The fear is there… a lot of people are still hesitating to come to the churches.”In Johannesburg’s crowded business district, some small evangelical churches have opened up for services under strict government regulations including the wearing of masks and social distancing.”God gave us also wisdom and intelligence. We can’t just say because we are praying we are not going to observe those preventative measures,” Malindhva said. But many religious locals are opting to stay away.center_img Strange space “I am praying at home, God hears me just fine when I pray at home with my family,” 57-year-old vegetable seller Gloria Msibi told AFP.”I love church but it is so dangerous to be in a closed space with so many people.”Since recording its first virus case on March 5, Africa’s most modern nation has reported nearly 46,000 infections and 952 deaths, registering at least 1,000 new infections daily in recent days.On Friday many South African mosques hosted their first prayers in more than two months.”We usually stand shoulder to shoulder. Right now we have to give space which is kind of strange,” IT technician Tunde Oladeji told AFP after prayers at a Turkish mosque in Midrand, north of Johannesburg. “It is still better to be here than to be at home because praying in a mosque is really special.”A fellow congregant described the prayer session as both “emotionally and spiritually challenging.””It is something different and so we have to adapt, and adapting is a challenge for some people. So it will take time, but hopefully … we will get through this together.” White plastic chairs are sprayed down with sanitizer and a smartly dressed cleaner says a prayer while dusting before a first service in her church in more than nine weeks.  President Cyril Ramaphosa gave places of worship across South Africa the greenlight to reopen from June 1 provided they could satisfy appropriate COVID-19 self-regulation measures.But few have done so to date, with many worshippers hesitant to return for fear of catching the coronavirus. last_img read more

Mr Green’s Enda Gaffney: Sportsbook 2.0 sets the tone for innovation and improved UX #boscon2017

first_img Share Related Articles StumbleUpon David Clifton: Licensing Expert – Gambling faces a pivotal moment March 31, 2020 Share Submit Maxima Compliance – ‘Mastering technical compliance to grow your global footprint’ June 9, 2020 Aspire builds Q1 momentum through regulated market focus May 5, 2020 Ahead of Betting on Sports 2017 (12-15 September), Enda Gaffney from Mr Green, part of the ‘Head of Sportsbook‘ session at this week’s event, spoke to SBC News about what he’s looking forward to at #boscon2017 and what sports partnership has stood out over the last 12 months.SBC: Why is it important for you to speak at Betting on Sports?EG: There has been a recent lack of innovation in the industry and the UX of major Sportsbook brands is starting to alarmingly look the same. Online consumers expect more in 2017 and we’ve sought to deliver this with our Sportsbook 2.0 product – a new and improved experience designed to engage and entertain our players.Using content from BettorLogic, we’ve set out to provide meaning to the odds that are available on our site. Also with providing entertainment a key cornerstone, we’ve created new experiences around Live Tennis betting and Football Combi’s. Initial reaction from our players has been very positive and over the next year we will continue to innovate and provide our players with a different experience.SBC: What are you looking forward to at Betting on Sports?EG: Betting on Sports has become one of the must go to events in the industry and the various speaker sessions can be a hotbed of expert insight and innovation. Once again, this year has some great panels with some great topics of discussion lined up covering different aspects of the industry.The conference was well attended last year and the networking events provide a great opportunity to meet other executives, suppliers, affiliates and other key industry people. Not many of these events take place throughout the year so it’s important to attend.SBC: Where can betting work together more closely with sport?EG: Data is always a key area. In the last number of years, some sports have really embraced working with the industry on the data front which has benefited the consumer via high quality content, ultimately leading to greater engagement and betting turnover.Some sports have an opportunity to be optimized further to provide even greater engagement whilst other sports have yet to really engage in working with the industry. Online consumers today demand great content that is relevant to their spending behaviour and that is something that we’ve looked to focus on with our new Sportsbook 2.0.SBC: What sports betting partnership has stood out in the past 12 months?EG: I like what Sky Bet has done with their making ‘Betting Better’ campaign. Their mission is to improve all aspects of their service to their customers and they do a good job of making that a reality. Price Boosts, Cash Out, RequestABet etc. Everything is supported by great creative and promotions which they showcase across many high traffic platforms such as Sky Sports.From planning to execution, the campaign looks to be a winner. Another campaign of note is BetVictor’s partnership with Liverpool as their Training Kit Partner of the Club. They’ve done an excellent job at ensuring maximum brand exposure in press conferences and post-match interviews.SBC: Describe your perfect sporting eventEG: US Golf Masters – being able to watch live via mobile any of the 18 holes and any of the pairings over the 4 days. If such live pictures were available, then I’m sure that plenty of Sportsbooks would offer a more comprehensive live betting offering throughout the tournament.Unfortunately, this is something that has yet to happen and could be quite a while away as I don’t feel Golf Tournament organizers have truly embraced the potential of their data and content.last_img read more

All hail Woods! Trump, Serena, Nicklaus join Tiger Twitter frenzy

first_imgAugusta, United States | AFP |  President Donald Trump and Barack Obama were among those hailing Tiger Woods on social media after his 11-year major drought was ended by a thrilling and emotional Masters victory on Sunday.“Congratulations to @TigerWoods,” tweeted the US president Trump, who played a round of golf with Woods earlier this year. “A truly Great Champion!”“Congratulations, Tiger!” former president Obama tweeted. “To come back and win the Masters after all the highs and lows is a testament to excellence, grit, and determination.”As Woods went on a charge on the back nine at Augusta National with birdies at 13, 15 and 16 to win by a stroke and claim his 15th major and fifth Masters, social media lit up in a frenzy of congratulations.“I am literally in tears watching @TigerWoods this is Greatness like no other,” tweeted 23-time Grand Slam tennis champion Serena Williams.“Knowing all you have been through physically to come back and do what you just did today? Wow Congrats a million times! I am so inspired thank you buddy.”Fellow golfers and former greats of the game were also quick to hail Woods’ achievement in returning to the summit of the sport after multiple surgeries and a string of off-course problems since his 14th major win at the 2008 US Open.Just two years ago his back pain was so bad Woods thought he might never play again, let alone win another major.“Very few people really know what @TigerWoods has been thru to get back to this point,” tweeted four-time major champion Rory McIlroy, who finished in a tie for 21st on Sunday.“So cool seeing him with Tida, Sam, Charlie, Erica and the rest of the team behind 18 green. Couldn’t be happier for him! What a great day for golf!” added McIlroy after an emotional Woods hugged his mother, children and partner Erica Herman after his winning putt.– ‘Simply unbelievable’ – Aged 43, Woods became the second-oldest Masters winner, trailing only Jack Nicklaus who won 46 in 1986.“A big ‘well done’ from me to @TigerWoods!,” said Nicklaus on social media. “I am so happy for him and for the game of golf. This is just fantastic!”Woods also set a record for the longest gap between Masters triumphs, the 14 years since his last win in 2005 eclipsing the old mark set by South African Gary Player who won his second Augusta crown in 1961 and his third in 1974.“For most an impossible task. But not for you,” said South African legend Player on Twitter. “Congratulations Tiger. So special for you and your family. So great for the game of golf. Simply unbelievable.”Other US Sports stars were quick to join in on Twitter. “A big BIG congratulations to @TigerWoods for winning the Masters!!” NBA icon Magic Johnson tweeted. “The roar of the Tiger is back!”“Congrats Tiger! What a performance,” the New England Patriots’ six-time Super Bowl-winning quarterback Tom Brady said.“Greatest comeback story in sports!” said three-time NBA champion Stephen Curry. “Congrats @TigerWoods Let me hold one of those 5 jackets one time!”Woods finally found time to respond to all his well-wishers late on Sunday night.“I can’t thank my family, friends and fans enough for their support. Having my family by my side today is something I will never forget,” he posted on his Twitter feed, @TigerWoods, along with a picture of him wearing his newest of five green jackets.“To not only be able to play again, but to be able to win again, is something I will forever be grateful for.“This jacket sure is comfortable.”Share on: WhatsApplast_img read more

2013 Thurston County Fair Volunteers Needed

first_imgFacebook0Tweet0Pin0Volunteers are needed to help Fair visitors recycle and compost food scraps.Adults and youth looking for volunteer hours can be part of the Thurston County Fair this July 31 to Sunday, August 4. Thurston County Solid Waste needs volunteers to help visitors at recycling and waste stations by the food court. This is a great project for scouts, church groups, and service organizations.Sign up for a three-hour shift and you plus one guest receive FREE Fair admission and a parking pass for the day of your shift.Volunteers don’t need any experience or special training. People volunteer because they interested in helping people, our environment, and want to be part of the Fair. Solid Waste staff will give you all the instructions you need for your shift. To help out at the Fair, visit Thurston County Solid Waste  and click on “Volunteers” or contact Brian Stafki at (360) 867-2284.For more information about the Thurston County Fair and other events, visit their website.Sincerely, Brian Brian Stafki, M.Ed.EducatorThurston County Public Works, Solid Waste Div.867-2284Olympia, WAlast_img read more

Balfour, Granite host tournament week

first_imgIt’s tournament week at the Granite Pointe at Nelson and Balfour Golf Courses.Balfour tees off on the week by hosting the annual Senior Men’s Open Wednesday at the Les Furber designed course.The 18-hole tournament attracts players from throughout the Kootenays.The scene remains in Balfour for Ladies Open Thursday.Once again players from around the regions will be in Balfour for the 18-hole tourney.The scene shifts to Granite Pointe for the 2011 Selkirk Paving Labour Day Open.This event is broken into three separate tournaments — men’s, seniors and ladies — all played at the same time.The men’s tournament, beginning Saturday, is a 36-hole event while the seniors and ladies play 18 [email protected]last_img