by Cara Gardner

Public Planning -- SPOKANE -- The City of Spokane is hosting the second University District Design Charrette this Saturday, June 19, from 9 am to 3 pm on the Gonzaga University campus. Attendees will be able to analyze current maps of the Riverpoint and Gonzaga campuses from environmental, historic and pedestrian perspectives.

"We've had a number of core workgroups [developing] an inventory of existing assets, and we've written narratives about those places," says Robin Toth, economic development project manager for Spokane. "We'll have [participants] talk about alternatives in the redevelopment."

About 300 citizens attended the last workshop, which focused on identifying the core values of the University District design.

"What we've done is the homework," explains Toth, "and we're asking, 'What do you see us doing in these particular subject areas?' They can help guide what goes on as part of the redevelopment."

The workshop will be held at the GU COG (710 E. Desmet Ave.). Lunch is available for $9. Attendees are encouraged to visit The event is free and open to the public.

Weekend in Wallace -- WALLACE, Idaho -- President Bush may have been in Spokane for lunch this week, but folks in Wallace are celebrating another presidential visitor: Theodore Roosevelt, who came to Wallace 101 years ago this weekend. Thus, the second annual Theodore Roosevelt Commemoration Days, beginning Friday, will kick off a weekend of presentations honoring historic Wallace and the era it represents.

"Last year's [events] were well received," says Dennis O'Brien of the Northern Pacific Depot Foundation, who is organizing the event. "About 300 people showed up for Edmund Morris [last year's keynote speaker]."

This year, speakers include Bethine Church, author of A Lifelong Affair: My Passion for People and Politics and Professor Stephen Pyne, the nation's leading authority on historical wildfires. Church, wife to the late four-term Idaho Senator, Frank Church, will discuss her experiences in state and national politics Friday at the Wallace Elks (419 Cedar St.). Pyne, who authored The Year of Fires: The Story of the Great Fires of 1910 will speak Saturday at the Wallace Arts Center (612 Bank St.). He will focus on the heroic work of Forest Ranger Edward C. Pulaski and his crew during the 1910 Big Blowup fire, which burned a third of Wallace to the ground and is considered the worst wildfire in U.S. history. Other speakers include Dennis Colson, Tony and Suzanne Bamonte and Dr. Rodney Frey.

Call (208) 752-1131 for more information.

Outdoor Roundup -- SPOKANE - Environmental groups work on preserving wilderness all year long, but during the summer months organizations like the Sierra Club, the Spokane Mountaineers and the Kettle Range Conservation Group (KRCG) lead the willing on treks across land they work to protect. Several local environmental organizations are planning a variety of hikes and camp-outs, from the Sierra Club's trek through the Blue Mountains, along a route Lewis and Clark once used as a shortcut, to the KRCG's second annual "Three Hikes in the Kettle Range" camp-out and barbecue.

On Wednesday, June 23, local activists will host a meeting at the Community Building (35 W. Main Ave.), from 6-7:30 pm, to support conservation efforts. Participants can learn which areas are proposed for wilderness designation and listen to presentations on how to build grassroots campaigns to protect them.

This Saturday, the Outdoor Writers Association of America will sponsor Kids Day in Riverfront Park's Forestry Shelter and Lilac Bowl. Kids can tie flies, learn to call elk and play outdoor games. Registration begins at 8:30 am, and activities last until 12:20 pm.

On June 26, the Spokane Mountaineers will create a new hiking trail on the James T. Slavin Conservation Area, a 628-acre parcel off the Pullman/Colfax Highway. The area is being rehabilitated into wetlands.

"We have 40 volunteers, and [there will be] some redirection of a stream because the meadow had been drained for wheat growing," says Patty House, a volunteer. "The trail will enable people to access it and enjoy the birds and solitude. It's a beautiful area."

All events, hikes and meetings are free and open to the public. For more information, visit: or

Publication date: 06/17/04

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