Friday, July 31, 2009

Dog Days of Summer

With temperatures hovering in the mid to high 90's, It is very uncomfortable. Midweek has been quiet, well except for my family emergency. My eldest daughter was involved in a near fatal accident three days ago. She suffered a broken rib, arm, and collar bone along with three cervical vertebrae. The only serious injury is the broken neck, but even that is coming along nicely with the neurosurgeon suggesting that surgery will not be necessary. She will, however, have to wear a neck brace for quite a while. I want to thank all of you that have expresses prayers and best wishes. I truly believe they helped. The doctors are amazed that no apparent permanent damage was detected considering she had to be resuscitated at the accident scene.

Don't forget that Athol Daze will take place Saturday, August 8 with the parade starting at 10:00 am, M/C by yours truly. There will be some unusual events. Camel rides, and contests for the kids in the park following the parade. Starting at 4:00 pm is the annual American Legion jam session behind the Athol Legion. This year is special, since it is being hosted by Larry James and the Hwy 54 re-union. The Bell's will be there and a ton of talented musicians from around the area. This jam is open to the public.

In other local news, Chief Krill of the Timberlake Fire District tells us that J.D's and The Buttonhook are now in compliance with all fire codes, excepting the flame suppressant hood in the Buttonhook, which has until re-opening in the spring to replace. The fire district also warns against any outdoor burning, as fire danger is extreme.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Summer Thunder

If there was any doubt as to the severity of last night's storm, the picture above depicts the lightning strikes as the storm passed through. Bayview didn't get any, but just north and south as most local weather patterns are, got heavy strikes all the way across the Chilco area and up the north fork of the Coeur d'Alene River. Fortunately, it was a wet storm with much rainfall, which not only squelched most lightning caused fires, but watered my tomatoes, too.

On a more personal note, my daughter, Debbie Gibson, was involved in a serious rollover accident last night. She is in critical condition, but is stable and expected to survive. Broken ribs, collar bone and several other unnamed injuries. We are all praying for her complete recovery.

July 29: Debbie passed the crisis during the night and appears to be on the mend. Thank you all for your thoughts and prayers.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Terry's Cafe Doomed?

We learned that recently, adding to the problem of Terry's Cafe shutdown by the fire district, that the Panhandle Health district piled on, too. This does not bode well for the reopening and is likely to be the straw that broke the camel's back, so to speak.

We wish Terry well in her other venture in spirit Lake. We suspected she was going to close at the end of her lease in Bayview, so it was just accelerated some by the aforementioned inspections.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Athol Daze

If you thought the parades and celebrations were over for the year, you were wrong. This year in Athol is special. Special because the city has been incorporated for 100 years. The first settler homesteaded in 1892, followed by a section gang and whistle stop on the Northern Pacific Railroad. A sawmill was built in 1902, which coincided with much of the old downtown.

The first church, an Episcopal-Methodist was built in 1900 followed by the Baptist church in 1901, which is still in use today as the Gates of Praise Assembly, just across from city park. Athol has a storybook past and is being revisited this, their centennial year.

The picture above, courtesy of the city of Athol, shows Main Street in 1907, just two years prior to incorporation. Main Street is now Old Hwy 95. The town's buildings were on the east side of the street with the railroad on the west. Catch my story with other pictures in the Spokesman-Review, Sunday, August 2. Oh, and don't forget the parade, Saturday, August 8 at 10:00 am. After the parade there will be a fair in city park including camel rides.

Following the day in the park, the American Legion Post 149, Athol will host a jam session to beat all jam sessions. The reunion of the band Hwy 54, organized by lead singer, Larry James is hosting under the gazebo in back. The Bells will be there, along with a ton of talent from all over North Idaho. It starts at 4:00 pm. Be there or be square.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

High Fire Danger

Timberlake Fire Chief, Jack Krill announced this morning, a ban on all outdoor burning. He also suspended all existing burn permits. Hot dry weather has settled in and more is expected as temperatures climb close to 100 degrees as the week progresses. The danger index is expected to go from high to very high, then extreme between now and the week-end.

The haze that was over us yesterday was due to a large forest fire burning in British Columbia. The wind has shifted, but there is still a light haze over North Idaho.

As an aside, paving is going on in the Garwood to Hayden corridor and traffic is backed up for miles. It might pay to go west to Hwy 41 to avoid the miles long parking lot.

Monday, July 20, 2009

A little late

I'm not very timely with this story, given that it is a couple weeks or so old. A retirement party was held June 27 for long time city clerk of Athol, Charlotte Hooper. After 24 years, Charlotte is hanging it up. A retirement party was held Saturday, June 27 with several dignitaries present. Sheriff Rocky Watson, Mayor Lanny Spurlock, along with former mayors, Jean Hill and Jorene Bohn.

A contingency from the Timberlake Fire District dropped in and of course, Charlotte's replacement,Sally Hansen and numerous family members and friends. Above, a few pictures of the event.

Pictured from top and left to right are: Charlotte Hooper and Rocky Watson; Lanny spurlock, Jean Hill and Jorene Bohn; Charlotte & Sally, the departing and arriving city clerks.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Terry's Cafe Shut Down

Terry's Cafe was ordered closed today by Timberlake Fire Chief, Jack Krill. Along with the closure of Terry's, two other premises owned or operated by Chan Karupiah received citations relating to fire and safety codes, but were allowed to continue operations.

The Buttonhook Restaurant along with JD's Bar were both inspected, then reinspected failing both times from numerous alleged code violations. JD's was given until July 30 to comply while the Buttonhook Restaurant was given until July 16. Fines have been levied against Mr. Karupiah which according to code, start at $10 per day for the first week, $50 the second week, $100 the third week and so on.

According to Chief Krill, not only were the violations not corrected, but new ones were found as well. The Buttonhook Restaurant has a large full basement which contains lawnmowers, fuel and other combustibles that will have to be removed. It is not known at this time whether those items belong to Chan or are still owned by Waterford Park Homes, LLC.

It was noted that unlike the Captain's wheel which was inspected earlier this spring, the three above mentioned properties have not moved to make corrections. Chief Krill noted that the 'Wheel spent over $5000 in order to comply and that it would be unfair to let the others have a pass when the Captain's Wheel immediately moved to correct deficiencies. We will follow this closely for further developments.

Postscript 7/20:

Further inspections after owners got after their staff for failing to cover deficiencies, both JD's and the Buttonhook were deemed far enough along for an extension. It turns out that many of the older restaurants in the Bayview/Athol area have out of date fire suppression hoods, but the five mentioned by Chief Krill, have until the spring of 2010 to replace the outmoded ones with state of the art hoods. These replacements are extremely expensive and replacing them in the middle of the tourist season was considered impractical.

Other businesses that failed their original inspections were the Pastime Tavern and White Pine Cafe, both in Athol.

Thursday, July 09, 2009

More 4th Pictures

The crowds are gone, guests have departed, and peace and tranquility has descended upon Bayview. While it's great to see family that has been out of reach for quite a while, it is tiring,too. Our cool weather is about over and we'll be back in the high 80's and low 90's again by tomorrow. I was asked to write another column for this Sunday's Handle Extra describing the events that took place last week-end. That story will publish Sunday.

We had a great turnout for the parade, Saturday with some very original entries. The pirates of the Caribbean was spectacular along with many others. Bayview's own Kazoo Marching Band was a hoot as well.

Wednesday, July 08, 2009


During this early Summer, we have seen a pandemic of ATV & Personal Water Craft deaths and serious injuries. Many of these involve people running at high speed that are too young to get a driver's license. I have counted about five serious ATV crashes and about the same number of watercraft accidents many involving death and others with serious injury.

The question here, is twofold. First, should watercraft have a lower speed limit and two, why are parents letting their children, some as young as 10 years old, drive dangerous vehicles at all. Should these parents be prosecuted for child endangerment? One such case happened near Bayview, Idaho, in a private driveway. Riding the ATV were two children, ages 10 & 11. They lost control and hit a power pole. One suffered a serious head injury and was air lifted to a hospital. The other, suffered a compound fracture of his leg.

While I'm not a fan of over regulation, it would seem that it is time to require either a license including a training class,an age restriction or both.

Sunday, July 05, 2009

It's Over

Undoubtedly the biggest and best Bayview Daze celebration ever, occurred on the 4th. Further more, we are probably the only parade in Idaho that featured camels. But its wasn't just camels, we were blessed with numerous entries which included the Grand Marshalls, Lloyd & Patty Pierce and Timberlake High School Jr. Miss, Hannah Oden. Cathy Armstrong did a magnificent job singing the National Anthem. Jeanene Crist, who lives in the Athol area, is a famous camel trainer that used to train both Dromedary and Bactrian Camels in Arizona. One can imagine their probably aren't very many crowding that specialty in our country.

Many organizers worried that the competition from other 4th venues would dampen the numbers, but quite the opposite occurred. Certainly, the parade entries were almost double what we had in the past.Over 75 entries, some of them multiple vehicles joined the parade this year.Everything from a giant 19th century bicycle with a huge front wheel and a tiny rear one, Kootenai County Mounted Posse and many other great entries. I'll be posting [ictures of these events for the next few days.Right now, here's a few.

Friday, July 03, 2009

The Party Begins

The week-end kicks off with live music at the Captain's Wheel tonight, and music everywhere Saturday. A big surprise awaits those of you that come in time for the parade here in Bayview. Well, I'm not good at keeping secrets. Tomorrow's parade will have the very first camels to ever walk in a North Idaho parade, or probably anywhere short of Saudi Arabia. Jeannene Christ is bringing two camels to march with the rest, so don't miss this attraction. Don't forget the art fair at the community center, either.

Very few raffle tickets remain at the Mercantile, Ralph's and the captain's Wheel. $20 may win you a cool $1000. Don't forget to head for the Bayview Fire House, where an open house will be held right after the parade until 4:00 pm. There will be music there, too. The street fair is full of fantastic arts & crafts and is in full swing today through Sunday.Later Saturday evening, around 9:30 pm the lighted boat parade will circle the bay followed by one of the best fireworks displays ever seen in this neck of the woods.

People have come from great distances for this event. We have a dentist from Mexico, a Doctor from London, England, and others from states as far away as Indiana. I'll be on the reviewing stand, announcing the parade and the raffle winners right after the parade finishes. Stop by and say hi if you want.