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Smoke from recent and ongoing fires have affected the entire state and are concentrated in the Lake Chelan area.

When air quality particulates exceed 200ppm (parts per million) the pollution rating goes to Very Unhealthy.

201-300 Very Unhealthy Health warnings of emergency conditions. The entire population is more likely to be affected.

Active children and adults, and people with respiratory disease, such as asthma, should avoid all outdoor exertion; everyone else, especially children, should limit outdoor exertion.

 

The trend is expected to continue so please heed the warnings and take appropriate precautions.

CLICK HERE for the Air Quality webpage for Chelan.

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BurnBanLogoSome campfires still allowed, check local restrictions before lighting any fire

OLYMPIA –Ninety-six percent of the state is experiencing drought-like conditions, which means a high risk of wildfires. In response, Public Lands Commissioner Hilary Franz is instituting a statewide ban on outdoor burning on the 13 million acres of forests and state parks under DNR fire protection.

Per the Commissioner’s Order, the ban begins Thursday, August 2, 2018.

Included in the outdoor burning ban are burn piles, prescribed burns, and the use of charcoal briquettes.

“When the risk of wildfire is this high – and when so many of our firefighting resources are already committed – we must take significant steps to protect our communities and firefighters,” said Commissioner Hilary Franz. “I know this is an inconvenience, and I appreciate the public understanding that this is not a safe time for intentional burning within our forests.”

The burn ban does not include federally managed lands, such as national forests, national parks, national wildlife refuges, or other areas administered by federal agencies.

Campfires are still allowed in approved fire pits within some designated state, county, municipal or other campgrounds.

To avoid accidental wildfires, the public can practice these prevention tips:

Camping and recreating

  • Only build campfires where authorized and when not under a burn ban; put them completely out before leaving camp, even for a few minutes; use plenty of water and stir until the coals are cold to the touch. Check locally before lighting a campfire as conditions may change and counties and local fire districts may have additional or new burn restrictions.
  • Dispose of lit smoking materials appropriately.
  • Fireworks, incendiary ammunition and exploding targets start fires and are illegal to use or discharge on public lands, including all state forests.

 Vehicles and Towing

  • Be sure chains and other metal parts aren’t dragging from your vehicle or trailer. They can throw sparks and start fires.
  • Make sure all off-road vehicles have a properly functioning and approved spark arrester.
  • Be careful driving through or parking on dry grass or brush. Hot exhaust pipes can start the grass on fire. You may not even notice the fire until it’s too late.
  • Check tire pressure and condition. Driving on an exposed wheel rim can cause sparks.
  • Have brakes serviced regularly to prevent brake pads wearing too thin; metal on metal can spark or drop pieces of hot brake pad.

Daily updates on burn restrictions are available at 1-800-323-BURN or on DNR’s website at www.dnr.wa.gov/OutdoorBurning.

The outdoor burning ban is expected to last through Sept. 30, 2018, though may be extended or shortened based upon ongoing fire conditions.

Stay connected during wildfire season

Anyone who spots a wildfire should call 911 as soon as possible to report it.

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douglas county logoOn 07-08-18 at approximately 9:42 PM, a Douglas County Deputy was on routine patrol in the 1700 block of Foster Creek Avenue in Bridgeport.  The Deputy observed a vehicle parked with an unknown subject leaning into the rear driver’s side window.

Based on his observations and recent drug activity in the area, the Deputy parked his patrol vehicle around the corner and walked up to the vehicle.  When the Deputy contacted the vehicle, he could see drug paraphernalia on the front center console. 

The initial investigation led to the arrest of 22-year-old Martin Saucedo Espinoza of Mesa, WA for possession of a controlled substance and use of drug paraphernalia.  Martin was booked into the Okanogan County Jail on those charges without incident. 

A continuation of the investigation resulted in the arrest of 21-year-old Christopher Rodriguez of Bridgeport, for possession of a controlled substance, on 7-17-18.  Christopher was booked into the Okanogan County Jail without incident.

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Ohme Howell NewDirector7 20

Nena Howell, a long-time community leader in Central Washington, officially took over the reins as Executive Director of Ohme Gardens on July 2, following in the steps of retiring director Mike Short.

The selection follows a regional search for a replacement for Short. Short has run Ohme Gardens on the hillsides north of Wenatchee, for 24 years, during which time he expertly attended to the stewardship and preservation of the unique gardens founded in 1929 by the Ohme family.

In announcing Howell’s hiring, Chelan County Commissioner Kevin Overbay, District 1, said, “We’re excited to have Nena on board to lead the District’s outreach efforts to gather insight from our community members so we can start the process of creating a long-range comprehensive plan for capital projects, community programs, and fundraising efforts.”

“It’s time to revisit how we can better serve our community, connect with visitors to our region and coordinate all our efforts to ensure the success and sustainability of these iconic gardens for generations to come,” said Nena Howell.

Howell is a proven leader with extensive experience in the areas of general management, project planning, customer service, marketing and fundraising. Most recently Howell led the renovation of the 100-seat Canyon Wren Recital Hall and eight artist residences for Leavenworth non-profit, Icicle Creek Center for the Arts, as well as planning and coordinating the organization’s major annual fundraising event. Howell is a graduate of Washington State University’s Chelan-Douglas Master Gardeners program and has had a life-long love affair with gardening.

Ohme Gardens nine-acre wooded garden towers above Wenatchee, Wash., just minutes off Highway 2. Visitors escape the summer heat in this oasis of cool created by towering firs and lush plantings, relaxing and meandering along the mile-long native stone path winding past waterfalls and serenity pools. Ohme Gardens is also a popular wedding and private event location, as well as host to the RLS Productions’ Concerts in the GardensTM series. Fitness fans have long considered the Gardens a top workout spot thanks to its vertical, undulating terrain and walking paths.

Built in 1929 and operated privately by the Ohme family for over 60 years, Ohme Gardens is currently under the stewardship of Chelan County. Centered in the State of Washington, Ohme Gardens is located near other popular tourist destinations in Leavenworth (19 miles) and Lake Chelan (30 miles). Admission is free for children aged 5 years and younger. The Gardens are open daily from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.

For more information please visit www.ohmegardens.com.

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Please support a favorite non-profit in our community -- Chelan Valley Hope.

Norm Manley will be MC at the Woodstock Anniversary #49, held at the Alpenhorn Café on August 25.

  • This is their major fundraiser that will assist with operating funds for CVH.
  • Entertainment provided by Waterdog, Brittany Jean and other local Musicians
  • There will be a costume contest with prizes.
  • There will be several raffles and a Silent Auction

You can support by being a 2018 sponsor. For $150 your logo will be featured, you will be recognized in media efforts and you will get two tickets to the show. For $250 you get the same plus two complimentary glasses of beer or wine. For $500 more of the same plus two commemorative Woodstock T-shirts.

You can also support Chelan Valley Hope with an In-Kind donation. For wineries your wine will be sold by the glass the night of the event. Other donations will be auctioned off on August 25. CVH is a 501-C3 non-profit, which means your gifts are tax deductible.

Thank you for your consideration.

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douglas county logoOn 07/11/18, Douglas County Sheriff’s Office Detectives arrested 35-year-old Elaine A. Hurd, of Wenatchee for Manslaughter in the 2nd degree and Criminal Mistreatment in the 4th degree following an extensive investigation into Hurd’s two-year-old son’s death.

The investigation revealed Hurd failed to obtain necessary medical treatment for her son for a broken arm and blunt force trauma to his head, which resulted in the boy’s death.

Hurd was booked into Chelan County Regional Jail without incident.  

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douglas county logoThere is a fast moving brush fire on Highway 28 near milepost 21.

Level 3 evacuations have been issued for Mansfield Road and Level 2 evacuations have been issued for all of Cresent Bar.

AlertSense notifications have been activated. Please avoid the area due to fire danger, evacuations, and emergency vehicles.

Information on Red Cross shelter for effected residents will be available soon.

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Buckner workparty2018

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douglascountysheriff148The Douglas County Commissioners have appointed Undersheriff Kevin Morris as acting Sheriff following Sheriff Harvey Gjesdal’s early retirement. 

After over 11 years of outstanding service, Sheriff Gjesdal has chosen not to complete the remainder of his third term in office.  Effective 12:01 pm on July 1, 2018, Undersheriff Morris will serve as acting Sheriff pending the appointment of a Sheriff by the Commissioners. 

As required by state law, the Douglas County Republican Central Committee nominates candidates for appointment to the Commissioners.  The Republican Central Committee held interviews with interested persons on June 23, 2018. 

The Douglas County Commissioners are expected to make a selection to fill the remainder Sheriff Gjesdal’s unexpired term by resolution on Monday, July 9th at 9:00am after they receive nominations from the Republican Central Committee.

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