Friday, April 21, 2017

Spokane Valley hostage crisis averted, extremists clash in Berkeley, and other morning headlines

Posted By on Fri, Apr 21, 2017 at 9:48 AM

A rainbow plunges toward downtown Spokane in the early evening of 4/20. - DANIEL WALTERS PHOTO
  • Daniel Walters photo
  • A rainbow plunges toward downtown Spokane in the early evening of 4/20.


One man's trash, another man's treasure. Or woman's treasure.

Find junk that you can turn into craft supplies tomorrow. It's called recycling, and it's a thing now.

Can you spare 50 dimes?

We've previously reported that you can text "CHANGE" to 50555 to give money to Catholic Charities. You can still do that!


Hostage saved in the Valley
A hostage crisis in Spokane Valley was resolved safely. (Spokesman-Review)

Bridge builders
Blessings Under the Bridge is going to be on Lifetime's Live Life Forward TV show. (Spokesman-Review)

Punishing the sanctuaries

The Justice Department sent warnings to nine "sanctuary city" jurisdictions. But not Spokane, because Spokane isn't a sanctuary city. (New York Times)

Extreme reactions

The far left and far right have gone to war in Berkeley, California. (Washington Post)

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Thursday, April 20, 2017

Do you DIY, upcycle or craft? Get free materials Saturday at ZeroLandfill Spokane

Posted By on Thu, Apr 20, 2017 at 12:35 PM

If your sewing machine never gets tucked away, your toolbox, glue and scissors are always ready for the next project, or you're just looking for some creative inspiration, ZeroLandfill Spokane has you covered.

This Saturday, April 22 (Earth Day!), people can come get free materials from the Inland Northwest City Center (a chapter of the International Interior Design Association) and save things from going to the dump.

Some of the things you might find include "fabric, carpet, wall covering, wood, tile, stone, glass, rubber, vinyl, laminate and much more," according to the event page, and there will be free activities for the kids.

"The Interior Design & Architecture community will collect expired and unwanted material samples for reuse and creative upcycling by educators, artists, DIY-ers, and crafters," says the event page. "Last year we diverted several tons of material from the waste stream."

The event goes from 9 am to 2 pm at FloForm, 5320 E. Sprague Ave., #400.

NOTE: If you want first dibs, you've got to register by 5 pm today to get in the door 30 minutes early. It's free, so what are you waiting for?

Don't forget, the event is also BYOB — bring your own bag or box to carry your finds home.

More information and pictures with crafting ideas can be found on the ZeroLandfill Facebook page:

  • IIDA Inland Northwest City Center's poster for ZeroLandfill Spokane

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Downtown Spokane Partnership offers "text to donate" option to help House of Charity

Posted By on Thu, Apr 20, 2017 at 10:53 AM

Last week, House of Charity announced it would have to stop offering daytime hours at its downtown shelter, and wouldn't be able to sleep about 200 extra people on its floor as it has all winter, after a boost of funding it received from the city runs out on May 1.

For its part, the Downtown Spokane Partnership helped
Downtown Spokane Partnership President Mark Richard speaks at an April 13 press conference about House of Charity funding. - SAMANTHA WOHLFEIL PHOTO
  • Samantha Wohlfeil photo
  • Downtown Spokane Partnership President Mark Richard speaks at an April 13 press conference about House of Charity funding.
 HOC last year with a $25,000 donation, and offered another $25,000 in matching funds, if other people stepped up to help out too.

Until April 14, about $10,000 had been donated for the match, and then Vickerman & Driscoll Financial Advisors pledged $10,000, DSP reports.

Kevin Driscoll told partnership staff that the firm had wanted to donate to HOC for a while and decided to take advantage of the match, DSP announced in a news release.

"(HOC) provides vital services to some of the most disadvantaged members of our community," Driscoll says in the announcement. "We are happy to support them and would hope others join us to enable the 24/7 services to continue."

The partnership is still looking for $5,000 to complete their match, and they have an easy way for people who want to donate small amounts to help.

To donate by phone, text "Change" to 50555 and a $5 donation will be added to your next phone bill.
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The legit origin of 4/20, Spokane Spanker fesses up, Bill O'Reilly forced out at Fox and morning headlines

Posted By on Thu, Apr 20, 2017 at 9:32 AM


NEWS: Councilman Mike Fagan (and other elected Republicans in Spokane) respond to controversial comments, plus NAACP Spokane chapter President Phil Tyler is stepping down, possibly to run for elected office.

MUSIC: If you have the means, we highly recommend picking some up — our picks for Record Store Day releases.

4/20: It doesn't refer to a cop code for smoking marijuana in progress, and it's not Bob Marley's birthday. Here's the legit story behind the international signifier for all things marijuana.


Are your tushies safe?
A headband-wearing Aeropostale-clad bro says he's the Spokane Spanker. Police have not yet arrested Jonathan Smith, who admitted to assaulting 30 to 50 women on the Centennial Trail over the course of three days. (KHQ)

Bill O'Reilly: Out at Fox News.
  • Bill O'Reilly: Out at Fox News.
Bye-bye, Bill
Longtime Fox News host Bill O'Reilly resigned from his post under embarrassing, controversial circumstances. Allegations of sexual harassment continue to pour in after 21st Century Fox reportedly paid out $13 million in settlements to five women who accused O'Reilly of sexual harassment. (New York Times)

Tragic end for runaway teen
A 17-year-old from Orofino, Idaho, died in a car crash yesterday on Sunny Side Bench Road. The boy, identified by police as Kristian Branden Perez, ran away from his prom Friday and was missing for days before he was found. Perez died the next day. (Spokesman-Review)

"I don't mind if you boo or yell"
U.S. Rep. Raul Labrador held a three-hour town hall Wednesday in Meridian, Idaho, facing questions and criticism of President Donald Trump's administration. The forum was only scheduled to last 90 minutes, but Labrador continued to field questions about Trump's tax returns, the future of health care and the Environmental Protection Agency, and the president's frequent (and costly) visits to his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida. (Idaho Statesman)
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The actual origin of the term 4/20

Posted By on Thu, Apr 20, 2017 at 8:58 AM

Spark one up for "The Waldos" today.
  • Spark one up for "The Waldos" today.

Like many of the great origin stories, the tale behind the digits "4/20" marks the beginning of the hero's journey.

4/20 is not a cop code, or Bob Marley's birthday (nor does it have anything to do with Hitler's birthday, wherever that came from).

It's not the time of the day that you're supposed to smoke weed (though there's nothing stopping you from lighting up at 4:20). It's not the number of chemical compounds in THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, and it's not the numbers in that one Bob Dylan song multiplied.

No, the origin for the international indicator of all things marijuana — and what's become the unofficial Stoner Holiday — is much more unlikely.

The term 4/20 actually started with a group of bell-bottomed stoner teenagers in San Rafael, California. And just last month, the digits were added to the Oxford English Dictionary, where they will live on as the universal signifier referring "to cannabis or to the act of smoking cannabis." The dictionary credits a group of unlikely heroic teenagers for the term's beginning.

So the story goes, there was a group of dudes at San Rafael High School in Marin County, north of San Francisco. In the early '70s, they earned the nickname "The Waldos" because they would sit on a wall after school and smoke pot.

One day, a Waldo named Steve Capper tells Criminal podcast host Phoebe Judge, a buddy told him of a magical field of marijuana ripe for the picking. Apparently, Capper's buddy's brother was in the Coast Guard and had planted some marijuana in a field near the Coast Guard's Point Reyes Station. Concerned that he would get caught, the service member relinquished control of the mystical plot of pot, and the Waldos jumped on it.

"We were teenage boys," Dave Reddix, another Waldo, says on the podcast. "Are you kidding?"

So the Waldos hatched a plan to meet at 4:20 pm at the statue of Louis Pasteur on the high school's campus. The teens "fired up a doobie" and hopped in Capper's '66 Impala.

They didn't find the elusive patch of grass that first day, but for weeks and months afterward, they would pass each other in the halls.

"4:20 Louis," they would say with a knowing glance. And each day after school, their search would continue. Eventually, they dropped the "Louis."

The Waldos never found the weed field, but in the decades after high school, they started seeing the digits scratched into park benches and painted on signs across the country.

Reddix suspects that the term spread with the help of Grateful Dead bassist Phil Lesh. Reddix's brother, Patrick, managed a Dead side band, and they smoked with Lesh frequently, he tells the Huffington Post.

Reddix recalls hanging out at the Front Street rehearsal hall while Lesh and his bandmates practiced.

"So we used to hang out and listen to them play music, and get high while they're practicing for gigs," Reddix tells HuffPo.

Where's the proof, you say? The Waldos have documentation. Stashed in a safety deposit box in San Francisco is a school newspaper clipping and dated correspondences between them.

In a man-on-the-street-style article dated 1974, one of the Waldos was asked, "If you had the opportunity to say anything in front of the graduating class, what would you say?"

"4-20," he answered simply.

There are also several letters among the Waldos, including one from Reddix to Capper. Reddix rolled a joint, he tells Judge on her podcast, smashed it down and mailed it to Capper. In the letter dated 1975, he wrote: "PS a little 420 for your weekend."
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Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Phil Tyler announces resignation as NAACP president, hints at run for office

Posted By on Wed, Apr 19, 2017 at 4:54 PM

In his final meeting as Spokane NAACP president, Phil Tyler emcees a heated discussion about controversial statements local leaders made at a March 4 Trump rally. - DANIEL WALTERS PHOTO
  • Daniel Walters photo
  • In his final meeting as Spokane NAACP president, Phil Tyler emcees a heated discussion about controversial statements local leaders made at a March 4 Trump rally.

Last night's NAACP meeting had been contentious, to say the least.

Most of the meeting had been an interrogation of City Councilman Mike Fagan and Spokane County Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich regarding comments they'd made about transgender rights and President Obama's impact on cop killings. There had been moments of anger and outrage and emotional confession. Long monologues had been delivered about deeply personal experiences. Comments had been made that infuriated those on the left, and comments had been made that had infuriated those on the right.

But as Spokane NAACP President Phil Tyler closes out the night, standing in front of the crowd in a sharp tuxedo with shiny shoes, he doesn't look upset. In fact, it's closer to the opposite. He's beaming.

"Tonight," Tyler says, "will be my final night leading this wonderful organization."

At first, he suggests that he's stepping down to set the stage for other leaders.

"They say you lift as you climb," he says. "I say sometimes, in order to lift, you have to not only reach down but step down."

He celebrates how the organization has grown and thrived.

"I am happy. You've made me happy," he says. "Continue to spread love."

There's applause. But then, like the post-credits scene in a Marvel movie, he drops a hint about what's coming next — a reveal that his motivation for stepping down may not entirely be about clearing the way for new leadership.

"I will add this final caveat," Tyler says. "Our bylaws expressly prohibit an officer holding a publicly elected office."

"(Wink)," Tyler has written in his notes.

Continue reading »

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A handful of new restaurants, bars and tasting rooms on the way, or open now

Posted By on Wed, Apr 19, 2017 at 3:58 PM

Patio dining season is here (depending on the day) and farmers market season in the Inland Northwest is just around the corner. To tide us all over until the months of regional bounty hit full swing, here are the latest tidbits on what's happening in, or on its way to, the local dining scene.

New places to check out now:

Craft & Gather's roasted beet salad. - CRAFT & GATHER FACEBOOK
  • Craft & Gather Facebook
  • Craft & Gather's roasted beet salad.
Craft & Gather
Opening earlier this week, the restaurant focused on local ingredients makes its home at the former Painted Hills Golf Course clubhouse, off of Dishman-Mica Road in Spokane Valley. Opened by two industry vets who've each worked at establishments around the country, Craft & Gather's menu leans toward what (apologies to all the chefs who roll their eyes at this term; sometimes you gotta keep it basic) appears to be upscale pub food, or Northwest comfort fare: entrées include several burgers, a fried chicken sandwich, ribeye with wild mushrooms, salmon with lentils, and an indulgent grilled cheese; sides and starters range from beet salad to seasonal veggies, polenta fries and steamed clams. An accompanying beer list is appropriately Northwest- and Spokane-focused, with offerings from River City, No-Li, Iron Goat, Slate Creek, Daft Badger, Orlison and more. Craft & Gather is now open daily, from 3-10 pm; happy hour is 3-5 pm. (Stay tuned in the coming weeks for our feature on this new spot.)

Continue reading »

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The Stranger interviews Rachel Dolezal, Aaron Hernandez found dead, and morning headlines

Posted By on Wed, Apr 19, 2017 at 9:43 AM


The view from the westside
The Stranger sent a team of writers to Spokane to tell its Seattle readers something that many of us here already know: Spokane, contrary to some popular opinion, is OK. Our literary scene is "blooming," our record store scene is "booming," our food scene is growing, and a city councilwoman doubles as "The Weed Queen." There's also this hard-hitting interview in which Ijeoma Oluo, a black woman, interviews former Inlander columnist Rachel Dolezal, a white woman who identifies as black. Give it a read.

Rachel Dolezal
  • Rachel Dolezal
Standoff in north Spokane
A driver was weaving on U.S. Highway 395 last night. When state troopers tried to pull him over, it started a chase. The driver hit spike strips, then kept driving without tires, then there was a police standoff on Division that involved the bomb squad and a robot. Eventually, he was handcuffed and taken into custody, according to the Washington State Patrol. (KXLY)

Goodbye, Nigel
Gonzaga junior guard Nigel Williams-Goss will declare for the NBA Draft, making him the second Zag to leave (Zach Collins was the other) after the team's memorable Final Four run. (Spokesman-Review)


NFL star/convicted murderer found dead
Aaron Hernandez, the former New England Patriots star tight end convicted of murder, apparently hanged himself in prison with a bed sheet, according to the Massachusetts Department of Corrections. (Washington Post)

Democrat nearly wins Georgia House seat

In what could have been a referendum on President Trump, a Democrat hoping to win a special congressional election in Georgia narrowly failed to win outright, gaining 48 percent of the vote — he needed 50 percent to avoid a runoff. He'll have another chance to win the seat in June. (New York Times)
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Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Bloomsday 2017 is coming; better get registered

Posted By on Tue, Apr 18, 2017 at 10:01 AM

Bloomsday 2001
  • Bloomsday 2001

Bloomsday has been around a really long time. This year's race on May 7 will be the 41st edition of Spokane's revered road rumble.

Given its longevity — recounted in our sweet oral history published last year — I would guess that some of the runners are old-school, in the sense that they register for the race using the good ol' U.S. Postal Service. If that's you or anyone you know, you need to have your entry postmarked today to take advantage of the $18 entry fee. If you need to pick up an entry form, you can get one at area Washington Trust Banks, Albertsons and Safeway stores, Franz Bakery outlets, Premera Blue Cross, Holy Family Hospital and Sacred Heart Medical Center.

Of course, you can register online through April 23 right here.

Happy running, Bloomies!
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Missing teen found safe in Idaho, Trump faces tax-reform challenge, and morning headlines

Posted By on Tue, Apr 18, 2017 at 9:23 AM


NEWS: What would have happened if City Council President Ben Stuckart ran against David Condon for mayor in 2015? This previously unreported poll gives us some clues.

MUSIC: Elkfest announces this year's lineup, and it's as 
San Francisco R&B collective Afrolicious is a highlight of this year's Elkfest lineup.
  • San Francisco R&B collective Afrolicious is a highlight of this year's Elkfest lineup.
eclectic as ever. 


Making amends
After a road was illegally plowed through a natural area near High Drive, two city council members called for immediate restoration. Avista is now leading the efforts to restore it. (Spokesman-Review)

Punished for running
An Idaho teenager who went missing after prom on Friday was found safe, according to the Orofino Police Department. Now, he could be criminally charged for running away. (KXLY)

Mall shooter dies in jail
The man accused of killing five people during a mall shooting in western Washington in September was found dead in jail yesterday. The Skagit County Prosecuting Attorney says Arcan Cetin, 20, died of an apparent suicide by hanging himself. (Skagit Valley Herald)

Keeping kids safe
The Coeur d'Alene School District is looking at ways to more effectively check the backgrounds of new hires. This follows a controversy in which a teacher, who lost his chiropractic license for having sex with a patient, was fired. He has since been charged with a sex crime. (Coeur d'Alene Press)

What about your taxes?
As President Trump pushes for tax reform, demands that he release his own taxes may derail any tax overhaul. (New York Times)
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