By Sarah Schrock

It was so incredibly quick. And now, in the aftermath of the Canyon Creek Fire, the only reminder here in town of the intensity that unfolded Saturday is the obscured atmosphere — and most of that smoke is from Canadian fires. By Sunday afternoon, even though the fire was only 10 percent contained, fire crews from far-away places such as Bainbridge Island and Pierce County were fueling their rigs and heading back home along with the two friendly gentlemen who were Red Cross shelter volunteers from Spokane.

It’s an awesome display of mobilization to have those emergency shelters set up so quickly. But what has been impressed upon us about the past few seasons of evacuations is how, despite the dozens of homes evacuated, few evacuees actually stay in the shelters.  This can only be attributed to the many open arms and doors of so many neighbors and friends who take in evacuees during the turmoil.

But for those out there who need the shelter, what speedy and organized help the Red Cross delivers during the crisis. Thank you, Red Cross!

By the time the next shelter gets up and running, the Methow Valley Community Center’s new kitchen will be finished. Volunteers are working this week to hang cabinets and get final finishings for the remodel that has been in the works for years, thanks to the painstaking persistence of Kirsten Ostlie, the MVCC manager.

Undoubtedly, Saturday evening was a long day for fire crews, but there are a lot of other less obvious players on the field who pitch in. Eden Davis, a high school senior, already working two summer jobs as a lifeguard and employee at Hank’s Harvest Foods, worked his regular shift at the pool then got called into Hank’s to help make over 450 deli sandwiches for hungry firefighters, pulling in over 11 hours for the high-schooler. Sunday, he worked his regular shift at Hank’s again and pushed my cart across the parking lot (in the old-fashioned manner that is a lost art at other grocery chains) still with a grin — what a sport!

Speaking of sports, our lovable Mama Linda Mendro completed the ChelanMan try-a-tri Triathlon Saturday for the umpteenth time. In the 75-and-over age bracket, she claims to have finished dead last, but her daughter Jennifer Duguay, who also competed, disagrees. Regardless of her finishing time, Linda raised over $3,000 to add to a scholarship fund she has developed for graduates in the Congo. Unfortunately, the trip she and husband Wayne had planned for the Congo this summer has been delayed because of visa complications related to civic strife in that country.

In other sports news, the deadline to sign up for Youth Soccer for the fall for kids aged 5–14 is July 31. Registration is online at

If you missed the deadline for the annual blueberry sale at the Twisp Valley Grange, don’t fret — there will another one in August. Also, progress is evident on the new accessibility ramp at the grange, which will be a nice addition to the facade and make it more usable for all.


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