- Written by Jamie Howell, Howell at the Moon Productions
Original tune stars local Leavenworth musicians
LEAVENWORTH, WA - Dec. 21, 2021 - The Bavarian-themed village of Leavenworth, Wash., has just released a new Christmas carol of its own and it seems to be catching on.
“Merry Christmas from Leavenworth” has garnered tens of thousands of views and heartfelt comments on social media since it was first posted last week. The production, featuring nine local Leavenworth musicians, was filmed in various iconic locations around Leavenworth, and seeks to impart a message of peace and community. Incorporating instruments ranging from the banjo to saxophone to alphorn, it’s an unusually beautiful piece of music.
A project of the Leavenworth Chamber of Commerce, the music video was created and produced by director Jamie Howell of Howell at the Moon Productions, with original music and lyrics from Leavenworth musician Eric Link.
“It’s hard to find a place with more Christmas spirit than Leavenworth,” said Leavenworth Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Troy Campbell. “And fortunately, we’re also blessed with the musical talent to back it up. There is real joy in this project and we couldn’t be more excited to share it.”
With 30,000 views on Facebook already, and thousands more on Instagram and YouTube, the sharing is going as planned.
The original song which was recorded in the Snowy Owl Theater at Icicle Creek Center for the Arts in Leavenworth. The musicians involved all live and/or perform regularly in Leavenworth.
•Eric Link - vocals, acoustic guitar
•Beth Whitney - vocals, banjo
•Seth Garrido - vocals, saxophone
•Erin McNamee - vocals
•Corban Welter - mandolin
•Aaron Fishburn - bass
•Aaron Gibbs - percussion
•Todd Smith - piano
•Janet Mano - alphorn
Howell at the Moon Productions is known for the creation of Woody Goomsba, the sentient nutcracker character (and now Leavenworth mascot) who has garnered more than a million views online in his various commercials and music video entitled “Gitcha Goomsba Up!”
The production crew directed by Jamie Howell included Nick Dirk, director of photography; Shane Wilder, camera/drone operator; Eric Frank, sound mixing/editing; Arlene Kaufman, set decorator; and Rylan Browning, production assistant.
- Written by Lake Chelan Chamber of Commerce
Looking for the perfect last-minute stocking stuffer? Purchase a Winterfest Button from the Lake Chelan Chamber of Commerce and enjoy special offers, discounts, and events at businesses across the valley from January 14-23.
- Written by Barb Chamberlain, Active Transportation Division director, WSDOT
WSDOT releases its complete statewide Active Transportation Plan
OLYMPIA – A statewide strategy and needs assessment for people who bike, walk and roll in Washington is now available online. This comes just as Congress has enacted new federal initiatives – with programs in active transportation, safety and healthy streets – and the state is beginning to consider how new revenues from climate-related sources might be invested.
Gov. Jay Inslee noted that the plan addresses multiple challenges facing the state. “We need a greener future for our children and grandchildren and walking and cycling represent the cleanest and greenest modes of travel,” said Gov. Inslee. “We also need to make our system accessible for those people who can’t drive and who rely on walking or rolling to transit to get where they need to go—these multimodal journeys also contribute to our climate goals. I’m proud of our state for creating a bold plan to create safer and more accessible active transportation connections for all Washingtonians.”
The Washington State Department of Transportation completed its plan with a two-part process, releasing “Washington State Active Transportation Plan, 2020 and Beyond – Part 1” in May 2021, then collecting public comment on two final chapters this fall and compiling both sections into the full plan. The plan serves as a compass for charting the way toward a truly multimodal transportation system.
“Active transportation plays an essential role in a fully multimodal transportation system,” said Secretary of Transportation Roger Millar. “Almost 30 percent of the trips we take each day are less than a mile in length, yet we often drive because there is no safe alternative. We need to make it safer for people who are just trying to cross the street or ride their bike to school or work or to the store. With this plan, we’ve pointed the way to where and how we could invest in the system that works for everyone, no matter how they get around.”
Active Transportation Plan sets a course
Every Washingtonian uses active transportation connections at some point in a trip, whether crossing the street from their parking spot to their destination, walking to a bus stop or bicycling to school or work.
- The plan assesses the needs for accessible pedestrian and bicyclist facilities, highlights safety concerns and provides the first-ever examination of state right of way and its suitability for active transportation.
- It provides new metrics for tracking and reporting progress that emphasize the importance of complete and accessible walk/bike facilities and connections to transit and other modes, particularly in overburdened communities.
- It calculates the environmental, health and economic benefits to society when people shift trips from driving to walking or cycling.
- For consideration of future investments, the plan lays out a rational approach to prioritizing safety and operational performance needs on state highways as part of the overall networks people use to reach their destinations.
- It incorporates the Safe System Approach, which emphasizes using engineering approaches that acknowledge humans make mistakes and that crashes with greater impact force are more deadly, especially for vulnerable road users.
The plan notes that improvements for people walking, rolling or cycling provide more information to drivers as well. It provides examples such as pedestrian-scale lighting and crossing visibility so drivers can see and stop in time. It also includes designs that provide a “self-enforcing road” to help people drive at the appropriate speed for a place with a mix of destinations and people walking or cycling. Making a road safer for the most vulnerable users also makes it safer for everyone, including the people who drive there.
For active transportation news updates including grant opportunities, webinars, and activities of WSDOT and partners subscribe to the WSDOT Walk + Roll E-News.
- Written by Karla A Mendoza , Administrative Assistant, CFR
Chelan Fire and Rescue
Wednesday, December 22nd, 2021, starting at 10 a.m.
232 East Wapato, Chelan, WA
Chelan Fire and Rescue Board of Commissioners have called a special meeting for Wednesday, December 22nd, 2021, at 10 a.m. at the Fire Station located at 232 East Wapato Ave.
AGENDA: Open Public Special Meeting 10 a.m.
Unfinished Business: Assistant Fire Chief Position
- Written by Barbara LaBoe, WSDOT communications
Travel charts, other tools helpful for winter weather and holiday traffic
OLYMPIA – Whether traveling by road, ferry, train, plane – or sleigh – the best way to ensure smooth trips during the upcoming holiday weekend is to plan ahead and be prepared.
The Washington State Department of Transportation urges all travelers to “know before you go” and plan ahead for the busy holiday weekend. Staying informed throughout a trip also allows travelers to react and adjust for any winter weather, delays or other issues.
Before heading out the door, travelers should take advantage of WSDOT’s trip planning tools and advice:
- Consult WSDOT’s travel times charts, which use historical information to help drivers plan the best times to travel. (There are no charts for Interstate5 at the Canadian border this year because it only recently reopened and COVID-19 testing and vaccination entry requirements make it difficult to forecast travel patterns).
- Check out the newly updated WSDOT travel map with options to view alerts, restrictions, weather stations and traffic cameras.
- Look up real time travel data for a particular road or ferry route online using the new WSDOT website or track it on the WSDOT app.
- Follow WSDOT’s social media accounts, such as Twitter and Facebook.
- Pre-program 530 AM and 1610 AM to vehicle radios for highway advisory radio alerts.
- Carry chains and other winter driving essentials.
- Check current chain and traction requirements on the WSDOT mountain passes webpage, or by calling 5-1-1, and watch for highway advisory signs.
- Leave extra time for holiday and winter travel, slow down and leave extra space between vehicles when driving on snow or ice.
Changes this year
This winter, WSDOT is asking travelers to be especially prepared for winter travel as staffing challenges mean the agency may not be able to deliver the same level of service as in years past. Crews will absolutely still be out plowing roadways, but some roads highways may have snow or ice for longer periods. Some road or pass closures also may last longer, and some areas may not get plowed as often as in years past. Crews need the public to help in preventing avoidable closures by ensuring vehicles have proper equipment and that drivers follow chain requirements and are not going too fast for conditions.
WSDOT’s road work, as always, will be prioritized based on safety, resources and pre-existing plowing priority maps based on traffic volumes and/or critical roads.
For those heading across state, pass conditions are available on the updated mountain passes page on the WSDOT website.
- On I-90, Snoqualmie Pass travelers can receive text alerts for pass delays of 30 minutes or longer – text “wsdot snoqualmie” to 468311 to subscribe, and “wsdot stop” to unsubscribe. This pass in particular sees heavy traffic on most holiday weekends.
- State Route 123 Cayuse Pass, SR 410 Chinook Pass and SR 20 North Cascades Highway have all closed for the season and are not available for holiday travel. These passes close every winter due to avalanche danger, poor road conditions, lack of snow storage areas and no nearby emergency response services.
In the Puget Sound area, the SR 520 bridge’s and SR 99 tunnel’s weekend rates will be in effect on the observed holiday Friday, Dec. 24. On the I-405 express toll lanes, travel will be free for everyone on Friday, Dec. 24, returning to normal toll and HOV requirements from 5 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 27. Weekends are always free to travel in the express toll lanes.
Traveling by ferry
People riding a state ferry should regularly check online sailing schedules. Due to an ongoing staff shortage, several routes remain on one-boat service, with a second boat added daily as crewing availability allows.
- With Christmas and New Year’s Day falling on a Saturday this year, the Thursday and Friday before, and the Sunday following each holiday are expected to be the busiest. Delays are possible in both directions on several routes.
- There will be a few schedule changes on Christmas Day, Dec. 25. Holiday timetables and sailings are marked on the schedule page for each route.
- Before heading to a terminal or boarding, customers are encouraged to sign up for ferry email alerts and check terminal conditions.
- A face covering is required in all indoor areas of vessels and terminals in compliance with the governor’s “Washington Ready” proclamation and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s order for public transportation.
Other travel alternatives
Travelers planning a trip by train, personal aircraft or bus also should make plans to avoid holiday delays:
- Amtrak Cascades passengers are encouraged to purchase tickets early and should plan to arrive at the station one hour before departure. There are no extra Christmas trains this year. Passengers departing or arriving in Tacoma are reminded to use the new Tacoma Dome Station at 422 E. 25th St. All Amtrak Cascades trains require reservations and trains fill up quickly during holidays. Visit amtrakcascades.com/ for tickets and schedules or call 800–USA–RAIL. Transportation Security Administration regulations require all passengers to wear masks.
- Information about traveling via state-operated airports is available online or call 800-552-0666.
- Those who use public transit should check with their local provider for any holiday schedule or service changes, including some Dial-A-Ride and fixed-route service that may not run on holidays.
- Written by Reema Griffith, WSTC executive director
OLYMPIA – On Tuesday, Dec. 14, after months of citizen suggestions and public input, the Washington State Transportation Commission voted 7-0 to select “Wishkah” as the name for the state’s next new 144-car hybrid-electric ferry, which will be under construction in 2022.
The name honors the river flowing south from the Olympic foothills into Grays Harbor, forming a saltwater estuary for shellfish, and serving as a vital link from forest to sea for the Lower Chehalis people and the communities it flows through. Before roads were built, the region was served by the steamer, “Wishkah Chief,” which carried passengers and cargo upriver to outfit the farms and logging camps.
Additionally, Wishkah Street is a segment of US 101 in Aberdeen. The name also has a link to the legendary grunge-rock band Nirvana which made an album titled, “From the Muddy Banks of the Wishkah.”
“It is a multi-faceted name that represents a geographic area in the state that does not have a ferry named for it.” said Commissioner Debbie Young, of San Juan County.
Other finalist names were:
- Stillaguamish, for the tribe that historically canoed the Stillaguamish River and Puget Sound near Camano Island, establishing a nautical culture.
- Muckleshoot, for the Native people who inhabited the Duwamish and upper Puyallup river watersheds. Elliott Bay is one of the tribe’s usual and accustomed fishing areas.
- Enie Marie, great-granddaughter of Chief Sealth, and also known as Mary Ann Talisa Seattle, who moved in both the Native and Euro-American social worlds.
- Snoqualmie, for the tribe and valley in east King County, watered by Cascade mountain snowmelt, where historically people lived in longhouses along the Snoqualmie River and tributaries.
- Stehekin, a Salish word meaning “the way through,” and a community on the north shore of Lake Chelan, accessible only by ferry or boat.
Wishkah was the most popular name in a Ferry Riders Opinion Group survey that resulted in more than 5,800 responses online, while Enie Marie ranked first among 1,784 emailed submissions to the commission. All 21 current ferries have names derived from Native American words or places.
For more information about the commission and a complete meeting agenda, visit: www.wstc.wa.gov
- Written by Carol A. Kibler, Administrative Office Manager, CFR
Chelan Fire and Rescue
Wednesday, December 15, 2021 at 3:00 P.M.
232 East Wapato, Chelan, WA
The CFR Board of Commissioners will conduct the meeting in person at the fire station, you are welcome to join via Zoom. The public is welcome to join by following this link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/87284665516 Meeting ID: 872 8466 5516 or dial +1 253 215 8782
Proposed Chelan Fire and Rescue agenda pending Board approval.
Regular Meeting Call to Order:
Oath of Office: Russ Jones
• Revenue and Expenditure Report: November 2021
• Payroll: October 26 to November 18, 2021 Payroll for $131,883.77 Paid 12-03-2021
• General Account Vouchers: 11-05-2021 for $3,975.47 #’s1346-1352; 11-12-2021 for $7,537.79 #’s 1370-1380; 11-19-2021 for $8,226.33 #’s 1409-1423.
• Capital Account Vouchers: 11-06-2021 For $17.02 #1353; 11-13-2021 for $2,276.74 #’s1381-1384; 11-20-2021 For $5,640.11 #’1424-1428.
• Minutes: November 10 and 17, 2021
Fire Chief Report: (Chief Donnell)
• 2021 Budget & Financial Report (November 2021 Financials if available)
• November Emergency Response Report / Operations / Community Risk Reduction / Apparatus Update
• End of Year Personnel Report
Firefighters Association Report (Dan Crandall)
• Introduction of Lateral Firefighter new hire – Brandon Fogelson
• Fire Chief Contract – Board Approval
• 2022 Budget – Board Approval
• Assistant Fire Chief Position – Direction from Board
• 2021/2022 Annexations - Update
• City of Chelan Fire Protection Services Contract – Update
• Station 75 Short Plat – Update
• Feasibility Study Letter – Chelan County Fire District 5 and Lake Chelan EMS Update
• KOZI – Community Connection December 16, 2021 @ 8:10 a.m. – Commissioner Moller/Chief Donnell
Board for Volunteer Firefighters:
- Written by Robin Pittman
Regular Board Meeting
December 9, 2021, 4:10pm
Bumgarner Meeting Room, 142 Pedoi Street, Manson WA 98831
I. Call to Order
II. Flag Salute
III. Agenda Additions and Deletions
IV. Public Comment
V. District Signature Form 2022
VI. Approval of Minutes
a. November 12, 2021 Regular Meeting Minutes
VII. Financial Review
a. Review Monthly Financial Report
b. Review and Approve Monthly Voucher
VIII. Old Business
a. Marina Planning Project updates
i. Contract approval
b. Board Bylaws:
i. Change ‘Officers, Terms’: eliminating “The chairman term limit is three years.” (Final
ii. Update ‘Board, Terms’: replacing “Four positions on the Board will be four (4) year terms
and one position will be a (2) year term” with “All positions will be four (4) year terms.”
c. Director’s Report
IX. New Business
a. Selection of Old Swim Hole consultant
b. 2022 Goals and Objectives
Next Regular Meeting: January 13, 2021 at 4:10pm, 142 Pedoi Street, Manson, WA 98831, unless otherwise
- Written by Reema Griffith, WSTC executive director
OLYMPIA –After months of outreach and public input, the state’s next new ferry will be named at the Washington State Transportation Commission’s meeting next week. Topics to be covered at the meeting include a report on initial findings of the commission’s ongoing road usage charge research program, an overview of tolling and ferry service performance, and efforts to increase transportation equity and access.
The two-day meeting starts at 9 a.m. both Tuesday, Dec. 14, and Wednesday, Dec. 15. Due to limitations on the size of gatherings in response to COVID-19, this meeting will be conducted virtually using Zoom Webinar. People interested in attending can register on the commission’s website. The meeting will be broadcast live on TVW.
Highlights of Tuesday’s presentations include:
- The future of transit service: A briefing will be provided by Pantonium, a company that has created an artificially intelligent route-optimization software, enabling urban transit services to be more responsive to real-time demands.
- Road Usage Charging (RUC) in Washington and Oregon: Initial findings from the commission’s 2021 RUC research will be reviewed in advance of reporting to the Washington State Legislature. Oregon Department of Transportation staff will provide an update on its RUC program operations and review what future changes might be coming.
- Equity in transportation: Staff will present findings of a University of Washington study on paratransit service during the COVID-19 Pandemic and lessons learned for future application. Disability Rights Washington will share its “Mobility Bill of Rights” and Washington State Department of Transportation staff will provide a briefing on its American Disabilities Act annual report.
On Tuesday, the Commission is expected to take action on two items:
- Naming Washington state’s next new ferry: With the process for building the state’s next new ferry underway – a hybrid-electric Olympic Class 144-car ferry – the commission initiated its process for naming this ferry in July 2021. After months of gathering name proposals and seeking public input on the eligible finalists, the commission will take action to select the new ferry’s name.
- Naming the Tacoma rail station: WSDOT is requesting the commission officially name the rail station in Tacoma the “Tacoma Dome Station.” This station not only serves passenger rail service, but also serves as a mass transit hub connecting various transit providers in one location.
Highlights of Wednesday’s presentations include:
- The latest on tolling: Staff will give updates on performance of all tolled facilities over the last year; a WSDOT assessment of timing and financing approaches for the construction of an expanded express toll lane system on Interstate 405/State Route 167; and an overview of tolling civil penalties and the toll forgiveness program.
- Washington State Ferries Service and Performance Update: A review of WSF’s recently released workforce plan, setting forth a path to address crewing shortages in the near-, mid-, and long-term; and an overview of the most recent forecast for WSF’s future financial performance, considering ongoing service challenges.
For more information about the commission and a complete meeting agenda, visit: www.wstc.wa.gov
Free, temporary internet access is available to those who do not have broadband service in locations throughout the state. To find the nearest Drive-In WiFi Hotspot visit: www.commerce.wa.gov/building-infrastructure/washington-state-drive-in-wifi-hotspots-location-finder/.
- Written by Herb Sargo