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Shanghaied Roller Dolls

WE BE JAMMIN’ (AND BLOCKIN’) in Astoria

Their first public derby bout, The Prohibitchin’ Party vs The Tease Party… set for August 18

“Hurricane”, belts out the resonant voice of Head Coach, Rusty House, and the slender vessel of Robyn Koustik, skate name, “Hurricane Ka-Ream-Ya,” pulls ahead of the pack, covered in pads, tights, and helmet, like a ballistic bobble head doll. She laps around the track, and attacks the other skaters with menacing intensity to progress through the mob of ladies on wheels, lacing their bodies together to prevent her advancement; she knocks, she swoops, she wriggles her way through the intimidating lot. There is so much action and strategy to get around the track, the skaters have to be mentally engaged without floundering on the basic skating skills set required to participate in roller derby.

The Shanghaied Roller Dolls set out on this skating odyssey about a year ago, after the suggestion of a derby league was tossed out on Facebook. A few initial meetings, organizational gatherings, and a contact with the Clatsop County Fairgrounds, all lead to the Fall 2011 formation of a budding roller derby recreational team, Shanghaied Roller Dolls. Practice began at the fairgrounds, which have been generously made available, when not otherwise engaged, since actual practice began in October 2011. One of the original founding, dread-locked members, Tara Allen, skate name “Kiss Me Dreadly,” recalls that early on it was apparent an experienced coach was needed. As a result of going to The Daily Astorian to announce the new derby team formation, and the solicitation of skaters, referees, and coaches (an extensive list of volunteers is required to help the team with everything from selling tickets to keeping track of skater points and penalties) the team found its first coach, Walt Sabe. An experienced flat track skater from “a totally distant past,” Walt came to the team to teach basic skating and equipment maintenance skills. At age 69, he comes to every practice and dons his skates, operating as an assistant coach to Rusty, and the skate coach.

“The minimum skills is the first plateau, they’ve got about six plateaus above that, (he laughs) part of it is learning the practice jams… a major plateau is learning how to think when they’re doing the practice jams,” says Walt.

Walt has been a tremendous resource to the team, as well as the help of established derby teams like Portland’s Rose City Rollers, and the now defunct Shadow City Rollers of Longview, Washington, which connected the Dolls to Bench Coach, Amanda Farmer, skate name “Scars Volta.” Completing the coaching team is the fourth coach for fitness training, Coach McBruiser, Orly Ben Jacobs, an active duty Coast Guard Member. Head Coach House not only appreciates having his coaches, but the huge advantage of the proximity of the one of the largest Women’s Flat Track Derby Association (WFTDA) member leagues, The Rose City Rollers, who have assisted The Dolls with numerous resources, significantly guest referees.

Tara remembers starting with her first pair of skates, a $20 pair of Chicago skates, a tall, leather, lace-up skate that had been rented out in Seaside, when people used to skate along the promenade. It was something to start with, but that style of skate really is not ideal for roller derby.

Julie House, married to the head coach.

“You need to able to squat down and bank your feet”, says Julie House, skate name “Petulant Frenzy,” she adds, “If you are going to put any money into derby, the first thing you should buy is the best padding you can!”

With that comment, Tara pulls up her pant leg, and reveals a large, bruised patch on her knee. The conversation turns to bruises, injuries, and equipment. Coach House admits this is inevitable when you bring derby women together. Among the investment of time, money, sweat, and tears, what makes this all-volunteer organization of women skaters, ranging in size and in age from early 20s to 40s, persevere? The answers are as varied as the team members, themselves; exercise, dramatic flare, adrenaline rush, me-time, spiritual and emotional victory, competition.

Coach House, skate name “Spicy Tuna Roll,” adds “These women (who participate in derby) are not like anyone else. It’s one of the things that keep myself and the other coaches coming back, and putting in the time, and going to the clinics, and doing the research, because these women are amazing, smart, and competitive!”

The Women’s Flat Track Derby Association is the international governing body for the sport of women’s flat track roller derby and a membership organization for leagues to collaborate and network. The WFTDA sets standards for rules, seasons, and safety, and determines guidelines for the national and international athletic competitions of member leagues. There are currently 156 WFTDA member leagues and 58 leagues in the WFTDA Apprentice program. Shanghaied Roller Dolls are currently processing their paperwork with the WFTDA to be an official “Apprentice League” Member. The first bout with another derby team, The Slaughter County Roller Vixens from Bremerton, Washington, is slated for September 15th. The next FRESH MEAT, an endearing term for new recruits training, begins Sunday, August 26th. For more information, visit www.shanghaiedrollerdolls.com, or check them out on Facebook at Shanghaied Roller Dolls Fans.

INAUGURAL BRAWL!
Sunday • August 19

Be sure to catch the Inaugural Brawl! on Sunday, August 19th at 5pm at the Clatsop County Fairgrounds, where two teams, ‘The Prohibitchin’ Party’ and ‘The Tease Party’, both, comprised of Shanghaied Roller Dolls, will face off in their first public derby bout. Tickets are available at www.brownpapertickets.com, or at the door for $10 (Ages 10 and under are free.). Come out and support these amazing ladies and badass mothers (Most of them actually are.) on wheels!


Help SOLVE the Problem of Marine Debris: Volunteer for the SOLVE Spring Oregon Beach Cleanup

Portland, Ore — Be part of the Oregon Beach Cleanup tradition by joining thousands of volunteers  March 31st, from 10am to 1pm. SOLVE encourages volunteers from around the state to join in the effort of clearing the entire Oregon Coast of the trash washed ashore from winter storms. Visit www.solv.org to register online and view a map of check-in sites, or call SOLVE at (503) 844-9571 ext. 332.

The global impact of marine debris is particularly visible this year following the tragic 2011 tsunami in Japan, which threw tons of debris into that Pacific Ocean. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) National Ocean Service, debris from Japan could potentially reach the West Coast in 2013. “SOLVE is working with multiple partners to prepare for additional cleanups if need be, and the help of volunteers across Oregon will be critical to prevent marine debris from damaging habitat, tangling wildlife, and clogging boat engines.” says Melisa McDonald, SOLVE’s Executive Director.

NOAA predicts that plastic items from the tsunami are the most likely to reach the West Coast. “Plastic debris and other synthetic materials can cause lasting damage to ocean ecosystems and wildlife” says Diana Bartlett, SOLVE’s Beach Cleanup Coordinator. “The majority of plastic found in the ocean is a result of overuse and careless disposal” she adds. Bite-sized pieces of plastic, including cigarette filters and bottle caps can be mistaken as food and ingested by wildlife leading to malnutrition, injury or even starvation. Larger debris such as rope, fishing line, and nets can tangle and strangle wildlife, as well as damage boat propellers and engines.

Last spring, more than 3,400 volunteers removed an estimated 52,617 pounds of trash off the coast, including 4,627 pounds of recycled materials.

The Oregon Spring Beach Cleanup is made possible by Coordinating Sponsors The Oregon Parks and Recreation Department and Local Coast Garbage and Recycling Haulers, and Legacy Sponsors Fred Meyer and the Tektronix Foundation.

Did you notice the E? SOLVE is unveiling a new logo that more accurately reflects the work of the organization – the active participation of volunteers choosing to SOLVE. SOLVE was founded in 1969 and was among the first in the nation to pioneer volunteer beach cleanups. SOLVE’s mission is to bring Oregonians together to improve the environment and build a legacy of stewardship.


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FisherPoets Gather for Poems, Stories and Songs

MORE at: clatsopcc.edu/community/fisherpoets-gathering.  Includes FPG “At A Glance.”

FisherPoets Gathering 2012 the 15th annual Gathering in Astoria OR, is expecting about 80 commercial fishing and maritime industry people from several states and British Columbia to bring their original poems, stories, songs and insights to Astoria.  Along with several local musicians who also have strong fishing-industry ties, they will present their readings and music at the weekend program, February 24 to 26.

The FisherPoets Gathering has been an annual event in Astoria in the last weekend of February since 1998.

“Fisher Poetry” comes from experiences living and working in the industry, and ranges in writing style from fast-moving rhyming couplets to crafted free verse or literary prose, and includes poems, songs, short stories, personal memoirs and essays, and art.  The mood can be funny, emotive, matter-of-fact or any combination.   The weekend also includes films and talks on fishing issues and culture.

Six downtown Astoria venues donate space for the Friday and Saturday evening programs of readings and music, along with a seventh hosting a later-evening open mike, so a good number of fans can comfortably join the lively ambiance of the event as audience, said Florence Sage of Astoria, a long-term FPG producer.   Audience comes from the local area, the northwest region, and points around the country to hear these original writings and oral accounts based on the hard-working vocation of commercial fishing and making a living at sea. Also, KMUN-FM broadcasts locally from Astoria Event Center at 91.9-FM, 6 to 10 p.m. both evenings, and streams live on the web at coastradio.org.

“Every venue will have a really program going on,” Sage said, “so you can move from place to place, or just take your pick and stay for the evening.  “We’re expecting more than 1,000 over the weekend, as usual, but we have lots of room.  People can get a weekend button ($15) from 3:30 p.m. Friday at the Gear Shack and at all doors to enjoy all events and all venues, or a $5 single-entry cover at doors to stay at any one event.

Reading and music venues Friday and Saturday evenings are: the Baked Alaska restaurant (foot of 12th Street), Astoria Event Center (9th & Commercial), Clemente’s (12th and Commercial), the VooDoo Room at the Columbian Theater (11th & Marine Dr.), the Wet Dog Cafe (foot of 11th St.) and the Fort George Brewery & Public House showroom 14th & Duane).

Clemente’s has a special program about Bristol Bay on Saturday evening, and hosts an early-arrivers’ Readers Mike Thursday Feb. 23 from 8 p.m., no button required.  A seventh venue hosts the popular Fishermen’s Open Mike for poems, stories and songs, with priority to commercial fishing people and to related topics.  This special mike is at KALA, the intimate performance room of fishing-friendly HIPFiSHmonthly at 1017 Marine Drive.  The VooDoo Room at Columbian Theater hosts late-night music.

Evening venues all have food and drink service.  Minors are permitted in Baked Alaska and KALA all evening, not in VooDoo Room, and other venues until 9 or 10 p.m., as noted on the FPG website.
Event headquarters is the FPG store, “the Gear Shack,” at the 14th Street Pilot station, foot of 14th St. The Gear Shack stocks FPG buttons, performers’ books, CDs, DVDs, and FPG gear for sale, acts as an information center, and also houses the Silent Auction.  Gear Shack hours are 4 to 10 p.m. on Friday, and noon to 10 p.m. on Saturday.  Auction viewing is from 1 p.m. Saturday, bidding hours Saturday 4 to 8 p.m.

Documentary films “Coming Home Was Easy” and “Red Gold” run both afternoons at the Columbian Theater, 4 to 5:30 p.m.  Four Saturday morning workshops on commercial fishing issues and history are at the Columbia River Maritime Museum, foot of 17th Street.  Two creative workshops are at Baked Alaska restaurant.  Workshops run 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. They include a first-hand report on effects of Japan’s 2011 tidal wave on the Japanese fishing industry, photos and recollections from the sailboat days of the Bristol Bay fishery, a workshop on polishing stage performance, and three others.

The Gathering has been given substantial and sustaining support every year by Clatsop Community College, along with contributions of services, goods and panel members from local and regional organizations and businesses, as noted in the annual program and on the website.  Astoria-Warrenton Chamber of Commerce assists with national and regional media contact.  Fisherpoets come to the Gathering as volunteers.

More information is at: clatsopcc.edu/community/fisherpoets-gathering, or by calling Marti Wajc at 503-738-8256.

Please direct inquiries to: Florence Sage, 503-325-4972, fsage@clatsopcc.edu.

Clatsop Community College is an affirmative action, equal opportunity institution.


The Wishing Tree Program

Shop Locally this holiday seasonWishing Tree Project has been providing for children in need since 1982.

The Program works like this: applications are taken from families that might need gift and/or food help for the current season. The family, listing children’s name(s), age, sizes and special needs fill out the applications. (applications can be picked up at the desk in the lobby across from the county employment office entrance).

These lists and needs are then transferred to a paper bell (autonomously) and hung on a Wishing Tree. Trees are located in all banks and credit unions in Astoria and Warrenton. In addition to Fred Meyer, Video Horizon, McDonald’s, and Link’s Outdoor Store. Folks in the community then choose a bell and fulfill the wish on the tree that gives gift information about the child recipient.

Take a bell and return the wish to the same location by the 15th of December. Gifts are taken out to the Clatsop County Fairgrounds. Volunteers will pick up gifts daily. We ask them to let you know that they are picking up gifts either verbally or by displaying a paddle stating pick –up on the paddle. We then organize the gifts by number to ensure each child’s privacy. The names are placed on the gifts, family packed and placed with the food baskets if one is requested.

The gifts and food are either picked up by family at the fairgrounds on December 19th or are delivered by the National Guard and Astoria Rotary Club on December 20th to those in Knappa and Astoria who don’t have transportation.

Each year we receive donations if you receive any for our program please direct them to me.

This money is used to purchase gifts and /or gift certificates for any child whose bell was not chosen from the tree by the return bell deadline. (Which this year will be on the 15th.) Trees will not be removed from the location until after the holiday. We will leave the tree with bells at Fred Meyers until 24th of Dec. If gifts come in late please call or direct them to place the gift at FM or take to fairgrounds.

For more information or to volunteer for the Wishing Tree, call Barb Roberts at 503 325-7277 cell 503-791-8773 Astoria, OR, or email moose98@q.com.


Discover Astoria – Shop Local with a Treasure Hunt Passport!

Discover Astoria“DISCOVER ASTORIA” is a fun treasure hunt in Downtown Astoria.  Locals are encourages to explore downtown shops and discover the unique offerings found in town.  Passports can be picked up at any of the participating stores (listed on the ADHDA Facebook page).  Once you have your passport in hand, explore downtown and find the cool item that goes with the cool store.  On every stop of your journey you get another chance to win fabulous prizes!  If you fill up the “Discover Astoria” passport by visiting all local participating merchants, you will have the opportunity to win the grand prize.  The grand prize includes an overnight stay at the Cannery Pier Hotel, lunch for two at the Baked Alaska, and dinner for two at T. Paul’s Supper Club.  Passports must be completed by December 24th.  Completed passports can be turned into any of the participating merchants.

If you have any questions please contact Downtown Coordinator Blaire Buergler at 503.791.7940 or blaire@astoriadowntown.com.

Participating businesses include Amazing Stories, Astoria Coffeehouse & Bistro, Astoria Column, Astoria Downtown Market, Astoria Public Library, Baked Alaska, Betty Lou Jean Co., Bloomin Crazy Floral, Cargo, Commercial Street Antiques & Collectibles, Erickson Floral Co., Fernhill Glass, Finn Ware, Foxgloves, Fulio’s Deli, Garbos Vintage Clothing, Gimre’s Shoes, Holly McHone Jewelers, Lola’s Consignments, Loop-Jacobsen Jewelers, Lucy’s Books, Lunar Boy Gallery, Mise en Place Kitchenware, Nepal Exchange, Old Town Framing Co., Purple Cow Toys, Rusty Cup, T. Paul’s Supper Club, T. Paul’s Urban Café, The Curious Caterpillar, Totally Trixie Boutique, Vintage Hardware, and What-Nots & Whimsy.


Occupy Movements in Oregon – An Update from the Rural Organizing Project

Occupy Klamath
November 17, Occupy Klamath Falls held a teach-in, a march on downtown of over 100 people, and a general assembly to discuss next steps. During their march they swept and cleaned up downtown! They posted this flyer on closed businesses to highlight the economic downturn in their town and educate on the occupy movement.  Tellers at US Bank even came outside during their lunch breaks and took pictures with protestors (reminding us who potential allies really can be)!

Occupy the Gorge
After Occupy Mosier’s week-long encampment that included music, food, teach-ins, Move Your Money actions, and protests against a WalMart expansion in Hood River, Occupy the Gorge is gearing up to move their camp to Hood River!

Occupy Newport
Occupy Newport is hard at work with their community outreach! They will be volunteering at the American Legion’s Thanksgiving Dinner to engage new community members. On November 17, Occupy Newport held a demonstration in Depoe Bay. They were joined by folks who saw it advertised on MoveOn and many who were driving by pulled over and joined them! Residents of Newport gather every Saturday to protest at the local Bank of America from 11:00AM-1:00PM. Their General Assembly is held every Wednesday evening at 6:00PM in Don Davis Park.

Occupy Roseburg
On November 17, Occupy Roseburg assembled to show solidarity for the two-month anniversary of Occupy Wall Street. Occupy Roseburg hosts an encampment on BLM land every weekend. Occupy Roseburg and their Feed the ‘Burg Community Potluck coming up this Saturday at Eagles Park starting at noon! Their first Feed the ‘Burg potluck was held last week!

Occupy Prineville
Occupy Prinevilled held a Move Your Money action downtown and distributed this brochure about local banking institutions. They have several next steps already planned and are using their monthly Potluck Politics as a “neighborhood assembly” for Occupy organizing.  From Human Dignity Advocates leadership: While Liberty Square is the home and heart, I believe it will be in “neighborhood assemblies” throughout the country that the progressive movement will find its legs.  True democracy can be resuscitated in earnest gatherings where neighbors meet neighbors to strategize and manifest the power of the people.

Occupy Halfway
With less than 400 residents, Halfway, OR is giving Mosier a run for its money! “Our first event a few weeks ago was a well-attended silent vigil solemnly taking stock and contemplating the Death of the American Dream. Our second event on 11.11.11 was a talk-and-walk around town, welcome to all. At the end of the walk we put down our signs and joined the local VFW chapter to commemorate and honor our service men and women.”

Occupy Corvallis
In addition to their November 17th Funeral for the American Dream, Occupy Corvallis has protested Bank of America several times. Occupy Corvallis holds General Assemblies every Monday and pick up litter everyday at 10AM while passing out flyers to local residents talking about Occupy Corvallis.

Occupy Oregon State University (Corvallis)
Occupy OSU kicked off with a teach-in held by the Peace Studies Department and a walkout on Halloween that ended with a people’s assembly in the quad. Occupy OSU jointly organized the Funeral for the American Dream with Occupy Corvallis.They hold a weekly General Assembly on Wednesday nights.

Occupy Seaside
On November 17, Occupy Seaside convened at the Seaside City Council meeting to bring a voice to the issues they care about. Several people occupied Seaside’s City Hall in protest of Astoria’s Illegal Lodging Ordinance and in solidarity with Occupy Wall Street.

Occupy Coos Bay
On November 17, Occupy Coos Bay occupied the Coos Bay Boardwalk to sand in solidarity with the Occupy Movement. These steadfast protesters have been holding rallies to bring attention to the issues they care about for over a month, including a teach-in at the beginning of November.

Occupy SIlverton
Occupy Silverton held a great event attended by over 80 on November 5 that included music, speakers, and a march! Check out the pictures! Occupy Silverton holds weekly vigils and will participate in Silverton’s Peace Parade this year, in addition to their has teach-in plans for January.

Occupy Albany
Occupy Albany holds weekly vigils in front of the Courthouse. Their first vigil had over 70 people–more people than Albany has seen in the streets since the 80s!

Occupy Port Orford
Occupy Port Orford held two rallies outside the Driftwood Elementary School Playground on October 15th and 22nd. We’re looking forward to seeing more from them in the future!

Occupy Bend
After a multi-week camp and many demonstrations and actions, residents of Bend continue planning occupy activities at their General Assemblies Wednesday nights.

Occupy Grants Pass
Occupy Grants Pass holds weekly vigils on Tuesdays which are regularly attended by 20-40 people! Occupy Grants Pass and Veterans for Peace have jointly organized film showings.

Occupy Ashland
From their encampment to Move Your Money work, Occupy Ashland has been busy! With a plethora of events focused on educating Ashland, Occupy Ashland spent November 17 demonstrating and sharing their stories with an open mic. For Occupy Ashland events, calls to action, and information, check out www.occupyashlandoregon.org!

Occupy Medford
People in Medford will be standing together to protest foreclosure auctions (many of which are illegal) at the Medford courthouse steps every Tuesday morning.  You can also catch fellow Occupiers at Alba Park for protest, discussion, and Medford’s General Assembly every Saturday!


OCCUPATIONAL HAZARDS – Occupy Astoria Treads On

OCCUPY ASTORIA is, as of this writing, only a little over two months old, and again, I’m a tiny bit disappointed: we have yet to see the kind of mayhem that makes for good copy. Seriously, folks, what’s it going to take? Are we gonna have to import cases of pepper spray (American pepper spray, of course; must keep those domestic debilitant manufacturers solvent) and pay local law enforcement to spray it in our faces at carefully-staged photo ops? Goad them into engaging us in an unfriendly game of taser tag? What will it take to get your attention?

Ah, but maybe I’m preaching to the choir here – chances are, if you’re reading Hipfish in the first place, you’re plugged in to the local sociopolitical current and don’t need to be reminded of our small but stalwart subset of the greater movement to redress social injustice and establish economic parity in this little civics project we call the USA. But then again, there’s a chance you only picked this up to check the date of the forthcoming Bluegrass Tribute to Prime Numbers, so allow me to get you up to speed.

In the month since we set up camp for our first, 24-hour public gathering, OA has kept on keeping on, via weekly Tuesday-night meetings and regularly scheduled rallies in various locations about town. December promises more of the same: there will be a SUPPORT OUR LOCAL MERCHANTS MARCH on December 3, plans are afoot to involve ourselves in the West Coast Port Shutdown scheduled for December 12th, and further gatherings and events are sure to follow thereafter. Updates and information are available at the official website, www.occupyastoriaoregon.org. Speaking as a supporter and member of Occupy Astoria, I’d like to use this space, first to shout out a word of praise to the facilitators and organizers behind the movement for their tireless efforts to hold it together and push it forward, and then, perhaps, to prod those both within and without OA (including myself) to strengthen our collective resolve. (Warning: subjective opinionating ahead. Keep your hands inside the vehicle at all times.)

This is a critical moment for the Occupy movement as a whole – certain conservative commentators have been smugly sneering that the uprising has failed, the latest round of evictions has succeeded in damaging the center of gravity that even a self-described “horizontal” movement like this one needs to survive, and the actions of an unfortunate few have resulted in damage to property matched only by the resulting damage to our credibility. The major problem, as I see it, is clear – the forces pushing against the Occupy movement are aligned, allied, and on point; one thing the far-right has always been adept at is coming up with a narrative and hammering it repeatedly home until it resembles a persistent commercial jingle or an insidious pop hook. Irritating, annoying, insistent, but you can’t get the damn thing out of your head. It takes a mighty effort not to sing along. Occupy has managed to get into the national consciousness by appropriating that technique to its own ends – “We Are the 99%” is a flat-out brilliant slogan, as clear, succinct and memorable as anything cooked up in the gray-flannel meth-labs of Madison Avenue – but our major strength as individuals, the awareness of and willingness to grapple with the complexities underlying that brilliant hook, threatens now to undermine and, if we’re not careful, capsize our efforts.

We need look no further than a hundred miles down the road to see where this has gotten us. Three weeks after the eviction from the former site of Occupy Portland, reports are coming back of a general splintering, of unification drifting apart into factions, a deconsolidation of energies that allows the standard devisers of the media narrative to re-assume command of the storyline. As of this writing, a Google News search for “Occupy Portland” reveals little about the marches and demonstrations that continue there on a daily basis, and much more on the tab for the cleanup of the now-fenced-off parks. The surface-level implications are obvious; these folks are nothing more than irresponsible troublemakers bent on destroying more than they’ve built up. Which is a narrative that may sound somewhat familiar to those with memories stretching back four decades or so; hey, it may be an old tune, but it’s a good beatdown and you can dance on their shallow, preemptively dug graves to it.

In saying all that, I am neither looking to absolve the larger movement’s members of their ultimate responsibilities, nor am I leveling a finger at our smaller, homegrown grassroots subset. Occupy Astoria has, in its short lifespan to date, distinguished itself by its unfailingly respectful relations with local authorities and the care with which it has used (and not abused) the public spaces where our gatherings have been held. But there are hazards afoot. Some have already parted from the movement or rescinded their support due to internecine squabbles over relatively minor concerns regarding procedure. Too much energy has already been expended in the simple act of holding Occupy Astoria together. Let us not lose sight of the greater picture; that way lies disillusionment, dissolution, and ultimately, apathy. We are not finished, not by a long shot, but we have a long way to go and it will take much strength and cooperation to get there, lest we fall into the trap that’s been set for us – just a small group of crackpots barely worth slowing down to read their handwritten signs as you drive past them. The motivations behind this movement affect all of us, and it will take all of us to effect real and lasting change. As the saying goes, “the people united will never be defeated.” (I always thought it should be “divided” instead of “defeated,” seeing as it rhymes and all, but nobody consulted me.)

OCCUPY ASTORIA meets on Tuesdays, 5:30pm at the First United Methodist Church, 1076 Franklin Ave, Astoria – in the downstairs social hall – enter through the door on 11th st.  FMI: http://www.occupyastoriaoregon.org/.


OPAC Meetings and Movies

Ocean FrontiersCLATSOP COUNTY is sponsoring a FREE screening of two movies at the Fort George Brewery Lovell Tap Room, on December 15, from 6:00 until 9:00 PM.  The movie event coincides with the Dec. 15-16 meeting of the Oregon Ocean Policy Advisory Council (OPAC) and Territorial Sea Plan Working Group in Astoria.

OPAC is a 24-member advisory panel to the Governor representing fishing and conservation interests, local governments, tribes and state agencies with stakes in management of Oregon’s marine environment. The council is currently updating the management plan for Oregon’s Territorial Sea, which extends three nautical miles from shore.

Sneak Preview of the New Documentary
Ocean Frontiers: the Dawn of a New Era in Ocean Stewardship

Ocean Frontiers is a new documentary from Green Fire Productions that explores the challenges facing our ocean and chronicles successful strategies being implemented across the country to address them.

Mary Wahl, a fourth generation rancher from the southern Oregon coast featured in Ocean Frontiers says, “We needed to bury that tired, old idea, that loggers and fishing people, ranchers and environmentalists were on different sides. Those days are sort of over. It’s clear that people from all these different arenas can come together and make good things happen, and that’s what’s going on here.”

Green Fire Productions

Green Fire Productions

Ocean Frontiers takes us on an inspiring voyage to seaports and watersheds across the country—from the busy shipping lanes of Boston Harbor to an obscure little fishing community in the Pacific Northwest; from America’s coral reef playground in the Florida Keys to the nation’s premier seafood nursery in the Mississippi Delta. Here we meet an intermingling of unlikely allies, of industrial shippers and whale biologists, pig farmers and wetland ecologists, sport fishers and reef snorkelers and many more, all of them embarking on a new course of cooperation, in defense of the seas that sustain us.

Ocean Frontiers is a must-see film, says Billy Causey, Southeast Regional Director, National Marine Sanctuary System. “Ocean Frontiers tells a powerful story about stakeholder involvement and the concept of multiple uses and the need to balance conservation and protection with sustainable use. Everyone who makes a living off the ocean and cares about the ocean needs to see this film.”

Filmed in HD, 80 minutes. Ocean Frontiers is a documentary and outreach campaign to inspire and mobilize audiences to better care for the ocean, for the good of all.

A new way of thinking, a new way of living, in concert with the sea, in consideration of those yet to come. Now is your opportunity to get involved.


Crabs

Crab catch aboard Nick Edwards Boat (F/V Carter Jon)—photo courtesy of Pacific Media Productions (PMP)

Oregon’s Ocean Fisheries: A Conservation Story
The uplifting story of how West Coast fisheries became sustainable.
It’s a story, that, until now, has NOT been told.

GO OUT to sea with the fishermen to see how they harvest seafood.  You will see and hear, first hand, from fishermen and scientists, how they partnered to make big-effective changes to the fisheries.  The take-away message of the film is CONSERVATION WORKS when informed people collaborate to achieve common objectives.  People who have seen the film report the documentary gave them an entirely new perspective on Oregon’s Ocean. (Produced by Onno Husing).

Go to www.oregon.gov/LCD/OPAC for agendas and more information on the Territorial Sea Plan Working Group and OPAC meetings.

Go to www.oczma.org/themovie.php for more information on “Oregon’s Ocean Fisheries,” and www.ocean-frontiers.org for more on “Ocean Frontiers.”


Conversation Project – Free Statewide Community Discussions This Winter

Conversation ProjectCONVERSATION PROJECT programs cover topics such as racial diversity in Oregon, land use, and decision making in a democracy.

Communities around the state have year-round access to free discussions through the Conversation Project, a program of Oregon Humanities that connects Oregonians with public scholars and provocative ideas.

The 2011–12 Conversation Project lineup features 26 programs that span diverse topics, including the use of natural resources, the history of Black people in Oregon, gender in pop music, censorship, the Civil War, decision making in a democracy, and volunteerism in America. Programs are scheduled December 31, 2011, to February 27, 2012, are listed below by county. For more information about each program and to view the full events calendar, please visit oregonhumanities.org.

Clatsop County

  • White Out?: The Future of Racial Diversity in Oregon, by Emily Drew (1/19/12 at 7 p.m. at the Judge Guy Boyington Building, 857 Commercial St., Astoria)
  • From Print to Pixels: The Act of Reading in the Digital Age, by Mark Allen Cunningham (1/21/12 at 2 p.m. at the Astoria Public Library, 450 10th St., Astoria)

Tillamook 

  • S/he-bop: Making Sense of Gender in American Pop Music, by Sarah E. Dougher (1/14/12 at 1 p.m. at Tillamook County Pioneer Museum, 2106 2nd St., Tillamook)

Oregon Humanities connects Oregonians to ideas that change lives and transform communities. More information about our programs and publications—which include the Conversation Project, Think & Drink, Humanity in Perspective, Happy Camp, Public Program Grants, Responsive Program Grants, and Oregon Humanities magazine—can be found at oregonhumanities.org. Oregon Humanities is an independent, nonprofit affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities and a partner of the Oregon Cultural Trust.


ELK-STRAVAGANZA

ElkHow to live along side these massive wild animals
With WILDLIFE EXPERT Bryan Swearingen
And LOCAL PANEL of Elk Enthusiasts

NEHALEM – Everyone has their stories about living with the local elk herds—from photographers who can’t get enough of this impressive subject, to gardeners who talk about decimated shrubs to hunters who follow their migratory patterns.  On Friday, December 9, 7pm, in the Riverbend Room at NCRD, come and learn to separate biology from mythology when it comes to these majestic wild animals.

Join the Lower Nehalem Community Trust as it presents Bryan Swearingen, manager of the Jewell Meadows Wildlife Area in an informative evening focusing on the habits, habitat and movement of elk herds. Bryan will be discussing the life cycle of the elk and will provide insights on living along side these massive mammals.  Bryan brings 22 years of experience with the Roosevelt Elk population in areas reaching as far east as Mt. Hood, as far north as the Columbia River, as far west at the North Oregon coast and as far south as Neskowin.

His wealth of knowledge includes his tenure as the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife’s Columbia Region Wildlife Habitat biologist from 1989- 1997, working with the Green Forage Program, which helps minimize elk damage in residential areas by improving the forage quality for elk on private and public lands.   In 1998, Bryan accepted the manager position at the Jewell Meadows Wildlife Area where he now works to provide habitat for up to 200 elk during the winter and spring months.  He will be giving an overview of this preserve and sharing about the challenges and successes at Jewell Meadows.

Bryan will be joined at the “Elk-Stravaganza” by local elk enthusiasts who have a deep understanding of the patterns and habits of our local herds. Attendees are encouraged to bring stories to share and questions to have answered.

Admission is $5 for general public and free for LNCT members.  Annual membership in the Lower Nehalem Community Trust supports local land conservation and nature education for children and adults.  Benefits of membership include free or reduced admission at Trust events, workshops and speakers, monthly e-bulletin, semi-annual newsletter, decal and more.   For more information about this event or to become a member of the Lower Nehalem Community Trust, call 503-368-3203.  LNCT is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization founded in 2002.


Ann F. “Annie” Baldwin

Ann Baldwin

Ann Baldwin Memorial, December 11, 2011, 3-7 PM, The Loft at the Red Building, 20 Basin Street, Astoria

Massage Therapist/Teacher, 63
Beloved Community Member

ANN FARBER BALDWIN of Chinook, Washington, died Tues. Nov. 22 at home.

She was born Ann Helen Farber on December 18, 1947 in New York City, the first child of Arthur and Ruth (Jaffe) Farber.

She spent her childhood years in Queens, New York, before moving to Seattle, Washington at the age of 8. She graduated from Sammamish High School in Bellevue, Washington in 1965.

In the fall of 1965 she entered Reed College in Portland, Oregon, which she attended until 1968 when she moved to London, England. There she attended the London School of Economics from the fall of 1968 until the spring of 1969. After traveling throughout Europe for some months, she returned to Reed College in the fall of 1969 where she graduated with the class of 1970, earning a degree in philosophy.

During her time in Portland she became familiar with and eventually joined a close-knit community known as Mist Mountain Farm near Clatskanie, Oregon.  There she taught in the Mayger School Head Start program until 1974 when she was promoted to Head Start administrator for the northern Willamette Valley and returned to Portland.

In 1980 she began her life’s professional work as a Licensed Massage Therapist as co-owner of the Evergreen Massage Clinic in S.W. Portland where she practiced for 5 years.

On November 29, 1985 she married the love of her life, Ron Baldwin of Clatskanie, Oregon. Their son, Alex, was born the following year. In 1987 the couple purchased their first home in Astoria, Oregon where Ann established a private massage practice. In 1993 the family moved to Chinook, Washington where she resided for the rest of her life. The couple operated Lido Caffé Espresso in Astoria for 10 years and Aunt Clara’s Greenhouse, a retail nursery in Chinook for 6 years. She taught “Massage For Relaxation” for 20 years at Clatsop Community College in Astoria.

She had many and varied interests, among them literature, philosophy, music and the outdoors. An accomplished pianist and banjo/guitar player, she was a member of many musical groups and performed in several theatrical productions. The old piano danced under her fingers at many Netul Grange country dances.

She was surrounded by a large circle of friends, as she could form connections with ease. But her most important role in life was that of a beloved wife and mother. She will always be remembered for her intelligence, warmth and kindness and for this, she will be missed by many.

Mrs. Baldwin is survived by her husband, Ron Baldwin at home in Chinook; their son, Alexander Baldwin and fiancé Heather Coy, of Seattle, Washington; her brother and sister-in-law, Daniel and Jean Farber of Mt. Vernon, Washington;  her sister and brother-in-law, Laurie and Robie Pruden of Edgewood, Washington; a sister-in-law, Susan Baldwin of Nogales, Arizona; nieces, Jenny Chapman of San Francisco, California and Debbie Parker of Dallas, Texas; and nephews Zachary Farber of Minneapolis, Minnesota, and Darryl Johnson of Nogales, Arizona.

– submitted
Ann Baldwin and band, 1975Left to right: Jim Fink, Stephanie Stein, Joseph Stevenson, Annie Baldwin in rehearsal for the first Tribute to Woody Guthrie, written and directed by Joseph Stevenson, circa ‘74.

Annie was a friend for over 35 years and was probably still living in a commune on Mist Mountain when this photo was taken. She was a calm and friendly anchor to many a creative flurry of mine, on stage in “A Tribute to Woody Guthrie”, “Chautauqua”, and “The Oregon Trail”; and as piano player for the Green Country Dance Band which started the monthly country dances at Netel Grange in 1979. To the end she walked through everything with grace and good humor, and will be sorely missed for her fine musicianship, her healing hands, and her big heart.

-Joseph Stevenson


Joey Pipia’s Magic Chamber

Check out the video:

30 Seats • 60 Minutes
One Outrageous Event
Two Shows Only
Sunday Nov 20
4pm & 6pm
at KALA

“Joey Pipia’s magic is invisible,” says colleague and magician Kevin Wolfe (who appears nationally himself), adding, “he fools me. That never happens. And, his magic is completely original, so you’ll not see it anywhere else; he’s world class.”

The invisible and original world class magic of Joey Pipia is featured in The Magic Chamber: 30 seats, 60 minutes, one outrageous event,” presented for two show only, Sunday, November 20th, 4 pm and 6 pm at KALA@hipfishmonthly in Astoria.

Expect to be dazzled by this performance, honed on the road in Pipia’s successful Northwest Tall Grass Magic Tour, a recreation of the legendary cadre of traveling “Tall Grass Magicians” who haunted the earliest days of the vaudeville era; literally walking through tall grass from town to town.

“This man could hide an elephant in his coat,” said Northwest Magazine in a feature article on the magician and his show; Pipia presented The Magic Chamber for over a year to sold out houses in Port Townsend at The Chameleon Theater.

Pipia’s tour of The Magic Chamber through the Northwest this past winter culminated in a sold out, three week run in April at the Tony Award winning Intiman Theater in Seattle. The show is now on a national tour. Joey has appeared in film, on TV, and on stages across the country.

“The magic happens literally inches away from your eyes,” says Pipia. No fancy boxes, no smoke or mirrors. It’s the ultimate challenge; up close, fast paced, funny, and amazing. Pipia will create a unique intimate theater in the gallery.

Grown-ups awake, The Magic Chamber is for you. Kids will enjoy it too, but this event is probably not for six-year olds.

As for hiding an elephant in his coat? “You’ll just have to see the show,” he says.

Tickets, $20, may also be purchased in person at Lucy’s Books in Astoria, 348 12th St (503.325.4210), or by calling brownpapertickets at 800-838-3006, or online at brownpapertickets.com. KALA@hipfishmonthly 1017 Marine Drive, Astoria. Info: 503.338.4878 Seating is limited. Doors open half hour before shows.

If the Flying Karamazov Brothers and Harry Houdini had a child, it would be Joey Pipia. Fast, funny, and amazing, Joey has performed his unique brand of magic for over twenty years.

He started as an actual sorcerer’s apprentice in New York City when one of the 20th Century’s modern masters of magic took him under his wing. Shortly thereafter, Joey started doing stand up comedy with the likes of Jerry Seinfeld. One thing led to another, and magic has never been the same.
Joey has appeared in film, on television, and on stages across the country. His one-man show in Seattle, Delusions of Grandeur, was a critical and commercial success. He’s escaped from a straightjacket while hanging by his ankles 80 feet about the street. He’s a featured performer with the legendary The New Old Time Chautaqua. Card tricks and comedy, KALA welcomes master showman Joey Pipia.


Stephen Berk interview part 2

Bob Goldberg talks to HIPFiSHmonthly political columnist Stephen Berk on the historical significance of the Occupy movement. Videography: Les Kanekuni


Market Research firm names KMUN #1

The professional market research firm, Eastlan Ratings, has ranked KMUN 91.9FM the top rated radio station in its market.*

Eastlan’s research compiled in winter, 2011, has been published showing that KMUN totals more weekly listeners in its market than any other radio broadcaster.

“This is Eastlan’s first survey of our market since Fall of 2006,” says Tom Hartland, Development Director of Coast Community Radio operating KMUN 91.9FM, “and just as they reported with that survey, KMUN remains our market’s #1 station among listeners age twelve and up.”

Broadcasters in markets nationwide rely on professional research to help attract potential advertisers.  Stations demonstrating greater numbers of listeners tend to justify higher advertising rates.

Listeners in the Astoria and Seaside region were the focus of Eastlan’s research which found a total of 18 stations commanded a measurable audience among those listeners.

Totalling the number of listeners for the entire week, the newly released data shows KMUN at the top, followed by KAST AM with KVAS scoring 3rd in the rankings.

Rounding out the top ten were KCRX, KCYS, KLOY, KOAC, KLMY, KCPB and KSWB, in that order.

“And we were thrilled,” added Hartland, “that our second station, KCPB 90.9FM, after only five years of operations commanded almost half again as many listeners as KOPB,” the region’s other non-commercial broadcaster.

Non-commercial broadcasters are limited by FCC and IRS regulations which prohibit them from airing commercial advertising.  To appeal to advertisers, however, stations like KMUN are allowed to acknowledge of donations and include information about individual and business donors.

Hartland sees such regulations working to the community radio station’s advantage.  “Fewer spots per break, shorter spots and no inflammatory statements all combine to make each spot stand out from the commercial clutter of other stations.”


GASLAND

GaslandSunday, November 20
2:00 pm at Cannery Pier Hotel Conference Room
10 Basin St, Astoria   Discussion Follows

Between shale gas extraction and proposed LNG export plans for Oregon, Gasland is the Sundance award-winning documentary about the destructive and dangerous consequences of natural gas drilling. The film was inspired when the gas company came to the hometown of the film maker, Josh Fox.

The Columbia River and Coos Bay remain the target of liquefied natural gas (LNG) companies that seek to use our region as a conduit for exporting domestic U.S. gas reserves overseas.  The dramatic expansion of natural gas drilling through “fracking” is directly connected to our own fight against LNG.  The LNG terminal proposed for Warrenton, with its 117 miles of pipelines, is up for approval at the county, state and federal levels – – it is not dead yet.

At the screening, Columbia RiverKeeper reps will explain the connection between shale gas extraction and proposed LNG export plans for Oregon.  Maps will be on display of the current Oregon LNG pipeline route and an update of recent legal changes risking the lives and property of Clatsop County residents near the Oregon LNG pipeline.

Together, we have an incredible opportunity to halt LNG exports and to deprive the gas industry of a huge incentive to expand gas fracking in the Mountain West.

See you there.


CCC Hosts Career Exploration Event

Are you interested in improving your career options but not sure how to begin? Have you been away from school for a while and are thinking about returning? Are you tired of losing out on job opportunities because you feel under-qualified?

If you answered yes to any of the previous questions, plan to attend Clatsop Community College’s career exploration event—Ring In A New Career, scheduled Wednesday, December 14th, 2011 from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

This event will provide you with an opportunity to identify career paths that make the most of your skills and interests, inform you about what’s hot on the career front regionally, and introduce you to CCC students and graduates.  Participants will learn about CCC’s admissions process and how they can earn 6 free credits at CCC while building skills through the College’s Lives in Transitions program.

This event is free, but seats fill quickly! Sign up today to reserve your seat!  Call 503-338-2371 today to reserve a seat, or go to www.clatsopcc.edu/new-career to register online.

For additional information, contact Amy Magnussen, 503-338-2417.


Clatsop Community College Hosts Events – CCC Honors All Who Served

Clatsop Community College will hold an event, “Honoring All Who Served – Welcome Home 2011,” to honor veterans, serving military and their families in observance of Veterans Day. The event will take place on a day that classes are in session to maximize opportunity for student participation – Wednesday, November 9, 11:45am to 12:30pm, CCC Columbia Hall foyer, 1651 Lexington Avenue. Currently, 140 CCC students are identified as veterans. The public is invited to attend and participate in honoring our local veterans, serving military and their families. On-campus parking is limited.


Solar Oregon to host residential basics of going solar workshop in Astoria

On Saturday, Nov. 12th, Solar Oregon will be hosting a Residential Basics of Going Solar Workshop in Astoria. This FREE workshop will be held at Clatsop Community College, in room 310 of Towler Hall. The presentation will start at 2:00 PM and last for approximately 1.5 hours. Attendees will walk away with a basic understanding of why solar is a smart choice for Oregon homeowners.

The workshop will be broken into two parts. The first part will cover:

  • How well solar works in Oregon’s climate
  • Available solar technologies and how they fit into your overall energy use
  • How to choose a contractor
  • Site assessments and considerations

The second half of the workshop will cover the financial consideration of going solar including:

  • Financial incentive, tax credits
  • Feed in Tariff Pilot program
  • Leasing and power purchase options
  • Financing options

Participants of the workshop will come away with basic knowledge about solar energy systems and will be prepared to do more focused research on their own and start working with a solar contractor.

About SOLAR OREGON: Founded in 1979, Solar Oregon is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit membership organization providing public education and community outreach to encourage Oregonians to choose solar energy. Solar Oregon consists of volunteers, members, board members, and staff. Some programs Solar Oregon offers include; free public workshops to educate Oregonians about the benefits of solar, Oregon Green and Solar Tours that showcase individuals and families that have made the decision to utilize sustainable practices in their own homes, and Solar Drinks which is an opportunity for networking within the solar community all over the state. Also, Solar Oregon provides up-to-date information about state solar incentives and tools to find local solar professionals in your region.  For more information about Solar Oregon visit solaroregon.org

If interested in attending this FREE workshop, please RSVP here: solaroregon.org/events/basics-of-going-solar-astoria/view. Contact: Joe Balich, News Management and Media, Solar Oregon (503) 231-5662.


Bring Back the Smelt

Federal Government Designates Critical Habitat for Threatened Pacific Eulachon

euchalonThe National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) issued a final rule to designate critical habitat for the Pacific eulachon, a threatened species of smelt, in sixteen coastal rivers and streams in northern California, Oregon and Washington.  Like Pacific salmon, these smelt reproduce in coastal rivers, but live in open ocean habitats for the other 95 to 98 percent of their lives.  Oceana (an Alaskan-based non profit advocacy group that protects ocean habitat) finds that the government ruling is a step in the right direction, but emphasizes that the failure to designate critical habitat in ocean waters is a major shortcoming and a threat to the recovery of this species.

“It is irresponsible of the agency to ignore the best available science showing that eulachon live the vast majority of their lives in coastal waters of the Pacific Ocean,” said Ben Enticknap, Pacific Project Manager for Oceana.  “The agency’s own reports document the distribution of eulachon from research surveys and observed bycatch in commercial fisheries – yet they just chose to ignore this.”

Scientists who prepared a biological review of the status of Pacific eulachon for the agency found that the greatest threats to the recovery of this species are climate change impacts to ocean and river habitats, bycatch in ocean fisheries, dams, and water diversion.  According to NMFS reports, the Oregon and California trawl pink shrimp fishery alone, caught and discarded 861,888 eulachon in 2009 and in 2008, 431,514 individual eulachon were taken.
Eulachon have historically had great cultural and economic importance in the Pacific Northwest, Canada and Alaska.  As a small forage fish, they are also of great ecological importance, preyed upon by numerous marine mammals, seabirds, and fish species including green sturgeon, halibut, rockfishes and salmon.

“The decline of the Pacific eulachon highlights the need for comprehensive protections for forage species. Forage fish are highly susceptible to climate change and fishery impacts, but without healthy forage populations, salmon, whales, dolphins and many other species will suffer,” says Enticknap.


Laughing Wild

Christopher Durang’s
LAUGHING WILD
SEPT 30, OCT 1
@ KALA Stage
in astoria

Laughing Wild

Featuring Jenni Newton & Bill Ham, directed by susi brown, photo by dinal urell

THIS SEPTEMBER, HIPFiSHmonthly announces the opening of The KALA Stage, in celebration of the continuum of locally produced theater, and the vital theatrical community of the Lower Columbia Pacific Region.

And now a word from Susi Brown – Pier Pressure Productions:
For those of you who enjoyed this past year of thought-provoking theatre at 260 10th, Pier Pressure Productions will be presenting a play just around the corner at the headquarters of KALA/Hipfish. If you haven’t taken an opportunity to attend one of KALA’s 2nd Saturday Art Walks, perhaps you will support the arts by attending PPP’s production of Christopher Durang’s “Laughing Wild”. When PPP announced that it was closing its doors, Dinah Urell graciously extended an invitation to the theatre group to use her new space for performance opportunities. Pier Pressure’s first production was performed in 2009 at the Columbia River Coffee Roaster in the area now known as 3 Cups. In addition to Urell’s offer, PPP as also been welcomed back by Tim Hurd and TJ Lackner (CRCR & 3Cups owners). It may be that PPP will be presenting something in the 3 Cups coffee shop again someday.

Curtain Everyone! By September 30, the blacks will be hung, the lighting system set, lighting technician waiting in the wings, the house full, and the diminutive black box stage will welcome two actors to enact its inaugural performance.

When we were doing the photo shoot for the PR for Laughing Wild, I was reminded by one of the actors, Jenni Newton, that we had coincidentally first met after a performance of playwright Christopher Durang’s Beyond Therapy (directed by then Clatsop College theater coach Gay Preston some 10 years ago). Ms. Newton portrayed the slightly (or is it tightly) wound psychiatrist. It was her actor-onstage introduction to the community. At an after-show party, I complimented Ms. Newton on her performance, I told her, “You’re good!” And there were numerous feelings mutual amongst attendees.

Since that time, we have not seen enough of Jenni Newton on stage, because she’s too busy being an award-winning, valuable high school drama instructor at Astoria High School, and the infrequent direction of community theater. We did see her as Annie Wilkes in Misery at the River Theater. A striking performance. Newton informs she likes a character that can take her on a ride, and an audience that’s willing to go with her. Hence, her interest in the character “Woman” in Laughing Wild.

William Ham, “Man” in the show, I have told recently, “I have a Bill Ham setting on my camera.” For Mr. Ham has been exercising his acting and comedy prowess on various stages in the region since he set foot on this coast. “Bullshot Crummond,” “Almost, Maine,” “The Zoo Story,” “Glengarry Glen Ross,” and “The Seafarer.” He also wrote, directed and performed three well-received one-man shows at the former Pier Pressure Productions space. Ham is a generous performer, giving us the full extent of the spirit and energy of the role, and his gift to make us laugh.

So, as we have witnessed, the theater community just keeps growing, maturing, changing, and thriving through it transitory times. It is the nature. KALA Stage embarks on its adventure, an embrace in diversity of theater and performance.

Laughing Wild is a provocative study about the perils and stresses of modern life in urban America. Jenni Newton and Bill Ham address the audience with two comic monologues which evolve into a shared nightmare and the isolation it creates. Christopher Durang’s characters battle with desperation, alienation, and life’s brutalities in his fiercely ironic comedy. See you there.

Purchase Tickets eve of show beginning 6pm at KALA.
Sept 30 – Oct 1
Doors open 7:30pm.
Show at 8pm. $15
Beer and Wine Sold. Snacks!
FMI: 503.338.4878
1017 MARINE DR. ASTORIA


Return of the Native

KALA@HIPFiSHmonthly PRESENTS
Justin L’Amie and Cynthia Lahti
Opening Reception: 2nd Saturday Art Walk
September 10, 5pm – 9pm through Oct 2
Speaker, Bill Ittman 7pm Ambient Music, Roge Hayes

KALA@HIPFiSHmonthly presents work by two Portland artists who have long ties to the Astoria area–Cynthia Lahti and Justin L’Amie. A special addition to the evening, North Coast art guru Bill Ittman will speak at 7pm, on behalf of the work of the featured artists. In addition, NorthCoast sound artist/painter Roger Hayes performs ambient music. Refreshments served.

Cynthia Lahti - Dolphins

Cynthia Lahti - Dolphins

Cynthia Lahti left Portland to earn a bachelors degree at the Rhode Island School of Design in 1985, and after graduating returned to Portland where she continues to live and make art. She is represented by PDX Contemporary Art in Portland and currently she is “focusing on ceramic sculpture and mixed media drawings based on expressive images of the figure. “There are so many figures out there in the world, wearing so many poses and costumes; I find those that resonate and interpret them in clay. Each artwork expresses an intense inner psychological state, its surface effecting a fluctuating quality, part beauty, part grotesque,” says Lahti of her work.

Lahti’s grandparents, Edla Soujanen and Nilo Vilulahti met and married in Astoria after immigrating from Tiavassolo, Finland in the early 1910’s. Her father Uuno Lahti was born in Astoria in 1919 and spent his childhood in Union Town and Youngs River. Her mother Janet Irving came to Astoria in the the early 1950’s. She was a home extension agent for Clatsop County, teaching women how to sew and cook. They were married in 1956 and moved to Portland. Her childhood was filled with many trips to Astoria, as well as camping adventures around the Pacific Northwest with friends from Astoria. Cynthia reports, “I continue to feel a connection to the place. It has sublime natural beauty and retains a feeling of being hidden and able to function by it’s own conventions. These are qualities that also dominate my artistic process. I am grateful to be able to exhibit my work in Astoria, a place many of my relatives and friends haunt.”

Justin L’Amie was born in Astoria in 1983, and he spent part of his childhood in the area with his grandparents Gail and David Wahlstrom, who came to Astoria from northern Minnesota in 1960. He attended Clatsop Community College for the academic year 2002-03 before moving to Seattle where he received his B.F.A. from the Cornish College of Art in 2006. He currently lives and continues to make art in Portland, OR and is represented by PDX Contemporary Art. His first one-man exhibition occurred in 2010.

Justin L'Amie - Snake

Justin L'Amie - Snake

Justin L’Amie writes about his work; “Most of my art is a tribute to that which sustains us: this amazing planet and all its beauty. Puppies, tree sap, barnacles, Queen Annes lace, rain, leaves, vitamin c, leather, fingernails, dry rot, coconut husks. As terrifying as it often is, I am still amazed at what the earth has to bare. I can’t help but be fascinated by the ways that animals (including humans) manipulate, promote, destroy and take advantage of the things that grow and exist around us. It is at once fantastic and wretched, and while it is often hard to accept the terrible in life, I try to embrace the fact that there are things I both love and hate about this place.”

Bill Ittmann, born in Boston, Mass. in 1939, developed a love of art and art historical sites while traveling in Europe in his teens. After receiving a B.F.A. in Art History from the University of Kanas and working at the University of Kanas Art Museum, he pursued graduate level courses at the Courtauld Institute at the University of London in 1964. In 1966 he lived with renowned California painter, Wayne Thiebaud and his family and modeled for a number of paintings and drawings. Ittmann completed his Masters Degree in Art History at Washington University in St. Louis in 1967. Between 1967-71 he taught seminar level courses at Williams College in Williamston, Mass. on old masters drawings and 19th century and contemporary art. Two students from his program, who later gained prominence are the late Kirk Varnedoe-chief curator of the Museum of Modern Art, and Thomas Kerns-director of the Guggenheim Museum in New York. After a long period of teaching, publishing and traveling he finally moved to Cannon Beach in 1978 where he currently resides and continues to be very active in art related activities-Design Review Board for the City of Cannon Beach for ten years, teaching at Clatsop Community College and former Director of the Art Center Gallery. He is an enthusiastic collector of regional and local contemporary art.

Ittman got to know Justin L’Amie while he was teaching in the CCC Art Department. “I found him to be profoundly interested in being an artist and ready to absorb every aspect of the art scene in Seattle and Portland that I could expose him to. He showed an exceptional appetite for looking at and producing art in a variety of media. His work has a deep interest and awareness of nature and shows a gentle, sometime mordant curiosity about all sides of nature, both lush and vibrant, and fragmented and dissipated,” says Ittman. The artists that L’Amie admires include Thomas Bewick, J.J. Audubon, James Ensor, Egon Schiele, David Shrigley, Raymond Pettibon, among others.”

As a curator and supporter Bill Ittmann has known Cynthia Lahti’s work through her affilation with PDX Contemporary. The artwork with very tactile surfaces stretches the boundaries between “art” and “craft”. On Lahti’s work Ittman describes, “Broken pigments, broken figures, mostly human and cats, substantially, but not exclusively female. There is a narrative quality to the work–fragments of a tale without a beginning or an end. There are many art historical references: Degas, Rodin, Giacometti, L. Freud, Francis Bacon, KiKi Smith, and Brancusi.”

This exhibition is made possible by the generous support of Jane Beebe, Director of PDX Contemporary Art in Portland. Jane has frequently loaned works of art from her gallery to exhibitions at the Art Center Gallery at CCC.


Newport Celebrates the 75th Anniversary of the Vital and Iconic Yaquina Bay Bridge

Yaquina Bay Bridge ca 1936

Photo courtesy of Lincoln County Historical Society

IT WAS CONSTRUCTED in 1936 as one of five bridges completed that year along the early Oregon coast, a vital connection to commerce then and the beginning of the largest portion of the state’s tourism industry.

It’s now a major icon for the coastal town of Newport – and the Yaquina Bay Bridge is turning 75 years old.

A huge month-long celebration of the Yaquina Bay Bridge’s 75th Anniversary will take place all over Newport, starting Labor Day Weekend and continuing until Sunday, October 2. The celebration will include various events and displays throughout the month of September, culminating in a 1930’s-style Community Birthday Party on Sunday, October 2, from Noon until 4 p.m.

The Yaquina Bay Bridge opened for traffic on Labor Day in 1936, and was dedicated on Saturday, October 3, 1936. Because of this, the celebration will start slowly during Labor Day weekend – with the official commemorative events happening October 1 and 2.

Various celebrations – still to be announced – will take place throughout the month-long celebration. To kick things off, Rogue Brewery rolls out commemorative label on September 1. Over the course of the month, celebrations will include special programs such as historic walking tours, a photo contest, coloring contest, a booklet by the Lincoln County Historical Society, books on the bridge by Matt Love and Judy Fleagle, a bridgewalk, panel discussion and other fun features throughout town that will continue through the month.

Then the main event weekend happens October 1 and 2.

Saturday, October 1 features:

Farmers market until 1 p.m. on the City Hall lawn

Gallery showings in City Hall and the History Center’s Log Cabin.

2 p.m. – 4 p.m. is a panel discussion located in City Hall

4 p.m. – 6 p.m.  is a history walk from City Hall to the Bridge

Sunday, October 2 features:

Sunday afternoon from 12 to 4 p.m. starts under the north side of the bridge between the bayfront and Yaquina Bay State Park. There will be a community picnic with 1930’s-style dress (optional), food, entertainment and formal ceremonies. A bridge walk is scheduled to open the Sunday event with everyone meeting on the south side of the bridge and led by a collection of 1930’s-style cars – all of which ends at the field under the bridge where the main event will occur.

11:45 a.m. Meet on the south side of the bridge for Bridge Walk.

12 p.m. – 1 p.m. Bridge Walk begins

12 p.m.  Entertainment and picnic begins (bring your own picnic – optional) under north end of bridge

2 p.m. Formal ceremonies

4 p.m. End of event


Revving up for the CD1 Race

t.a. barnhart talks with Jim Greenfield and Lisa Michaels for HIPFiSH

First, the personal stuff.
I do not like the politics represented by Jim Greenfield and Lisa Michaels. I think they are wrong on the facts, wrong on the theory and wrong on their conclusions about American economics and politics. I also think more Americans agree with me on the issues than with them. Should either of them get the Republican nomination for CD 1, count me among those helping whichever of the Democrats is nominated.

That said, I had a great time talking with both Greenfield and Michaels recently. Rob Cornilles, the presumptive leader of the GOP field, wouldn’t even agree to an interview for Hipfish; his deputy campaign manager made sneering, dismissive comments about both of these opponents. Yet when we spoke over the phone in late August in separate conversation, I found both to be open, personable, honest about their political aims, and full-speed-ahead conservatives. Both knew my political leanings — I informed them prior to the interview of the range of work I do — but neither was defensive or aggressive. In short, it was a pleasure to speak with them and to get the chance to ask them about their campaigns for this nomination.

Jim GreenfieldJim Greenfield
Jim Greenfield is a lawyer working in real estate investment, a radio talk show host, and he’s been through this before. In 2002, he was the Republican nominee for this Congressional seat, and he got thumped 63%-34%. But he doesn’t come across like a person who thinks about defeat. He’s also a free market fundamentalist, as he sees it:

“Adam Smith, Milton Friedman … free markets work fabulously well at creating wealth and prosperity for the entire population if they’re allowed to work without government intervening. And part of that free market system is that companies that do well and are well-managed succeed. Companies that are poorly managed or dishonest, fail. And that’s the way it should be.”

Greenfield opposed the TARP bailout, calling it and other taxpayer-funding rescues of corporations “corrupt” — the recipients of that funding in turn give campaign contributions to those who bailed them out. This opposition to targeted government spending that benefits specific individuals is one example of the kind of spending Greenfield opposes.

“All the functions that the government is now spending on that are not authorized by the Constitution, we should look at cutting back and save there. And that’s most of the federal domestic budget.”

As the CD 1 Representative in Congress, Greenfield said he would not be working to bring “pork” back to the district. He feels the system is corrupt, with each Member voting for other Members’ pork in order to get their own. For Greenfield, this is “politics as usual” and he would instead seek to reduce federal spending.

“We could save trillions of dollars off our military budget if we’d just start fighting the war on terrorism intelligently. Instead of having huge armies fighting wars in foreign countries, if we just started targeting terrorist groups, that would save our Treasury hundreds of billions of dollars a year in the military budget.”

This would also include closing down bases in Europe and Japan: “We can’t afford [to station troops there] anymore.”

Greenfield does not accept the argument that raising the debt ceiling was necessary: “Debt is the problem”. True to his conservative ideals, he argues that government needs to eliminate regulations that hamper the free market. The housing market implosion, he said, was caused by regulations aimed at universal home ownership that forced banks to lend to anyone, regardless of ability to pay. He would privatize Freddie Mae and Freddie Mac and let the free markets fix the damage done to housing.

Greenfield argues that his stands on the issues “are much stronger, much clearer” than Cornilles’. His strategy is to position himself on the right and give the voters a real choice. He is clear on where he stands: “liberal governmentalist policies don’t work”. Liberalism creates bureaucracy and higher taxes while preventing the free enterprise system from working. He believes voters in both parties are coming to this understanding; so by campaigning on that basis, he believes he’ll provide the winning alternative to liberal politics-as-usual that he sees as the greatest problem facing the country.

Lisa MichaelsLisa Michaels
Lisa Michaels is a local tv and radio host, a consultant and entrepreneur, and, like Greenfield, a veteran of political campaigns. In 2000, she lost the HD 8 race to Mark Hass by 10 percentage points. In 2008, she again challenged Hass, this time for his Senate seat. She didn’t fair so well in this second race, getting steamrolled 68%-32%. But, again like Greenfield, you don’t hear anything defeatist from her despite those tough losses.

But while Greenfield is running to take on federal domestic spending, Michaels’ aims for Congress are less clear. She’s unfamiliar with the issues facing the North Coast region. A long-time resident of Beaverton who pulled her kids from public schools, the basis of her campaign stems from her broadcasting experience:

“I try to talk with my audience, not at them. … I’ve been studying the issues and talking with the community about them for years” on her radio show. Her strategy is simple: Go out and meet as many voters as possible. She believes she is “in touch” with her community, and, if elected, will maintain that contact by conducting a weekly Ustream.com interactive town hall with constituents to get their perspective.

“I’m not going to be owned by anybody,” she declared.

Taxes and Regulations
Although not running explicitly as a Tea Party candidate, Michaels reflects those politics. She opposes anything that infringes on the property rights of the individual. Part of this stems from a land dispute involving her family, and part of it is simply the ideology of the far right:

“I just really want to get government off of people’s backs so they can start making more money and so we can free ‘em up to hire more people.

“Business owners don’t know what state and federal governments are going to hit ‘em with next. Measure 66 & 67 was just the death knell to a lot of business owners.”

Over the course of an hour’s conversation, she offered no specifics about these issues apart from a few personal anecdotes. Her views are similar to Greenfield’s; he presents the free-market-libertarian perspective in a more sophisticated way. If he’s running for the distinctly right, that’s turf he shares with Michaels.

She also opposes “green solutions”, charging that they cost more than what is returned on the investment — not a very encouraging message to those seeking the development of wave energy facilities off the Clatsop County coast.

In fact, she’s a proponent of “clean coal gasification” and other energy resources that she says “we know work, like oil and gas”. She called “green energy” a “big scam” that allows the federal government to take away people’s lands, lets environmental lawyers file frivolous lawsuits, and otherwise deprive Americans of their private property, thereby enslaving them.

These are not fringe or radical views, of course. I assume in the course of the campaign, she’ll provide more detail as she meets voters;

“Designated Losers”
“I think it’s a big power trip on both parties, and I’m fed up with it.”

Michaels initial reason for seeking the nomination was to expose voter fraud, something she has taken on in the past. But even more than tackling voter fraud — a big challenge given the paucity of evidence in Oregon for anything worse than incompetence — she now wants to win to prove a point:

“I especially want to win it because of the attitudes and the things that have happened with the Cornilles campaign. … We’ve got some insiders in the Republican Party, the elite group that is supposed to run all the campaigns…. I think it’s a big money-making endeavor for people that run campaigns.”

Michaels cited her various forays into the electoral waters, either being thwarted by the party pushing forward candidates they had no intention of backing — “designated losers” she calls them — or refusing to provide her with fundraising and other resources. She pointed to the Dudley gubernatorial campaign as a prime example of this GOP elite caring more about money than winning:

“If you can gin-up fear of government to the extent that you can raise eleven million dollars with the right kind of high-profile guy like Chris Dudley, and you can get commission on eleven million dollars, despite the fact that his opponent … only raised $4 million, and he beats him? Do you really care if your candidate loses if you’re able to gin-up that kind of angst to generate that kind of donation level?”

Michaels’ anger at the GOP seems to be as much a driving force as Greenfield’s is towards federal domestic spending. And while it’s evident she cares about the general issues of reducing regulations and taxes, and that she would be an advocate for resource extraction within the country and an opponent to developing sustainable energy sources; it’s also clear she’s running to win for another very strong reason.

To spite the Oregon GOP.

“Are we really going to nominate the guy who lost by double-digits to the crazy guy less than a year ago? Does that really make sense to anybody?”

Rob Cornilles
I extended the same invitation to the Cornilles campaign as I did to Greenfield and Michaels. I spoke to his Deputy Campaign Manager who, when told I would be interviewing those two, was dismissive about their politics. Cornilles “declined” to be interviewed, whether because of the inclusion of Greenfield and Michaels, or because I was the interviewer, I don’t know.

Jim Greenfield’s website is http://greenfieldforcongress.com/. Lisa Michaels’ can be found at http://www.lisamichaels.org/.