- Columbia Center Rotary awarded $2,170 towards Kadlec’s pageant for children with special needs, called the Sparkle and Shine Pageant. The pageant, held in November, invited boys and girls to have a day of fellowship and fun while highlighting their unique talents that make them sparkle and shine.
- Northwest Farm Credit Services awarded $2,000 towards equipment for the Kadlec Academy program including portable speaker systems, wireless microphone systems and CPR-AED training manikins. Kadlec Academy runs once a week for four weeks at local, participating schools for grades 1 through 5. Kids learn the basics of the various systems in their body, do related physical activities, learn basic hands on CPR, and have a healthy snack. Kadlec is striving to instill healthy habits in young children to build a lifetime of healthy living.
Kadlec Foundation seeks grant opportunities for programs and services that, without donor support, would not be possible. Thanks to two generous organizations, Kadlec Foundation has been awarded $4,170 to benefit two pediatrics programs through Kadlec. We are extremely grateful to the following organizations for their support of Kadlec and Kadlec Foundation.
The first phase of the rebuilt Playground of Dreams in Columbia Park opened for play Wednesday with the help of a significant contribution by the Tri-City Water Follies Association.
Colin Hastings, President of the non-profit Tri-City Water Follies Association, presented a $75,000 check to help fund the first half of the playground replacement, which appropriately includes a hydroplane toy representative of the Columbia Cup event that has taken place on the nearby river every July for more than 50 years.
“Our mission is not only to put on an epic summer festival, we also are committed to supporting improvements to the shoreline and park,” Hastings said. “We are thrilled to donate to the Playground of Dreams so that generations to come can experience such a great regional treasure.”
Kennewick Mayor Don Britain acknowledged the community’s ongoing commitment to this Tri-Cities landmark, and the vision, participation and support that ensures the legacy of the Playground of Dreams continues for future generations.
“Since its inception in 1999, and rebuild in 2004 after it was burned down, our community has rallied around this playground,” Britain said. “When inspectors warned it was nearing the end of its life span, there was no doubt we would unite yet again to replace it. And with financial gifts from organizations like the Tri-City Water Follies, Columbia Center Rotary, Conover Insurance and the Permobil Foundation, we’re half-way there.”
The announcement jump starts a $482,000 fundraising campaign for the remainder of the 1,600 square foot replacement structure, which the City plans to complete in the spring. In the meantime, Parks and Recreation Commission Chair Hahn praised the Water Follies for their contribution, along with donations by Columbia Center Rotary for an inclusive musical instrument feature, the Permobil Foundation and Conover Insurance.
The new design incorporates iconic elements and new features the community asked for during 2017 open houses and surveys, including the cable bridge, a lighthouse, a Lampson crane, and a hydroplane. Just a few of the new elements planned for Phase 2 include a zip track, a spinning sensory wave seat, and challenging climbing features.
The public also wanted an inclusive playground, Hahn said. First phase components are connected by ramps, and the second phase of the site will be poured with a surface that can be navigated by users with wheelchairs or mobility limitations. Features such as the Columbia Center Rotary Harmony Plaza musical instruments mean kids of various abilities can play side-by-side, and experience structured and unstructured play.
This re-imagined Playground of Dreams is constructed of durable, recyclable materials that will withstand decades of weather and play. During summer, aluminium posts won’t burn or feel hot like steel does, and the powder coat finish and rubberized deck coatings help to insulate little hands from the heat. Additional safety considerations include an open concept layout that allows parents and kids to see each other from most vantage points.
The more than 1400 inscribed wood pickets that enclosed the previous playground were removed, and have been made available to those who purchased them as part of the original fundraising campaign. Small pieces and embellishments from the wood playground were salvaged to be incorporated into future projects or returned by request to the volunteers who helped build it.
Now the City is asking the community to once again pitch in and donate to help complete Phase 2 of the rebuilt structure. Major corporate sponsors in addition to generous individuals who see the benefit of the playground are being rallied to help raise $482,000 to complete the rebuild.
As proposed, the cost of all equipment, surface and installation will total nearly $1 million dollars. Of that, to fund this first phase, $325,000 was paid by the city and nearly $180,000 has been pledged by sponsors. Over the next three months, the Parks and Recreation Commission will be campaigning for nearly a half-million dollars to complete the project. Corporate sponsorships ranging from $1,000 to a $500,000 title sponsorship – payable over multiple years –are being sought to expedite the build.
Individuals can support the rebuild by purchasing $10 wristbands, $100 commemorative lapel pins, and $250 “dream medals” that can be inscribed with a name or personal message and will be affixed to the pillars at the playground entrance. They are available for purchase at the Southridge Sports and Events Complex and Kennewick Community Center, and online soon at KennewickRecreation.com.
“The most successful donor-driven projects are those that are jump-started with a significant contribution, typically by a community champion that shares similar objectives and sees the value in giving back,” said Parks and Commission Chair Ken Hahn. “The playground rebuild fundraising campaign is no different, and we’re thankful for the catalytic investment by the Water Follies.”
Mid-Columbia Libraries will begin the remodel of its West Richland branch in early 2019. The permanent branch, located at 3803 W. Van Giesen, will close Dec. 11-12 for moving. The temporary branch, located behind the permanent branch in the former City of West Richland Public Works building, will open Dec. 13, and the library will host its holiday family fun event, Grinch-mas, that day at 4 pm.
Library hours and services at the temporary branch will remain the same as at the permanent branch. Operations will continue at the temporary branch while the main branch undergoes renovations. The remodel will begin in January 2019 and take approximately three to four months.
For more details, a complete remodel floor plan, construction progress photos, and more, customers can visit midcolumbialibraries.org/west-richland-branch-remodel.
Bluewood’s 2018-19 season begins Friday, December 14, as the ski area welcomes skiers and snowboarders to the mountain.
Currently there are 20 inches of snow at the base and 23 inches at the summit. The National Weather Service forecast calls for fresh snow early next week heading into opening day.
“We’re looking forward to a great season,” says Kim Clark, General Manager of Bluewood. “Guests will notice a few changes this year. The platter pull lift in the beginner area has been replaced with two new conveyor lifts. Just step on a moving walkway and enjoy the ride up. It’s perfect for beginners. And at the summit there’s a new yurt where guests can eat a quick snack, have a warm drink or hang out between runs. We’re ready to welcome everyone back to the mountain.”
The Skyline Express and Easy Rider conveyor lifts are scheduled to run on opening day (Triple Nickel lift to be determined). Ski and snowboard rentals, retail, food services and lessons also will be available.
Operating schedule: Bluewood will be open from December 14 through December 16, and then daily from December 20 through and including January 1, except for Christmas Day (closed). Daily hours will be 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., except for December 24, which will be 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. In January, Bluewood will be open Wednesdays through Sundays every week and on Martin Luther King Jr. Day (Monday, January 21).
Snow phone: For recorded updates on conditions and other information, call (509) 240-8991. Information is typically updated by 5:30 a.m. and is available 24/7.
The Mid-Columbia Mastersingers are pleased to partner with The Richland Players this holiday season on a fully staged production of "The First Nowell," a one act musical nativity play by 20th century British composer Ralph Vaughan Williams. This production will serve as the second installment in MCM's 2018-19 subscription concert series. Three performances will be given at the Richland Players Theatre in the Richland Parkway on December 14, 15 & 16.
Sixty members of the Mid-Columbia Mastersingers will provide a soundtrack of traditional Christmas songs and carols for the story. Stage director Megan Johnson helms this ‘play within a play’ set in Victorian England, with the characters retelling the traditional account of the nativity story. The heart-warming holiday tale emphasizes the idea of community and connection as we see a group of disparate strangers evolve into a fellowship of neighbors and friends.
Also included on the program are the newly-formed Mastersingers Youth (MY) Choirs, performing a festive selection of music. Each show will feature a different group of MY Choir singers from the four performing ensembles. The Mid-Columbia Mastersingers are proud to feature these young voices in this inaugural season of their expanded MY Choirs program.
The three performances will take place at the Richland Players Theatre in the Richland Parkway on Friday, December 14 and Saturday, December 15 at 7:30pm, and Sunday, December 16 at 3:00pm. A “Behind the Music” talk with the Artistic Director Justin Raffa will take place 30 minutes before each show. Tickets are $25 for adults, free for K-12 students. Season passes are still available for a discount on each concert. Visit www.mcmastersingers.org for more information.
This production is part of the Mid-Columbia Mastersingers 2018-19 season, and tickets can be purchased online at www.mcmastersingers.org or by calling 509-460-1766. To receive free notifications about Mastersingers concerts and events, join our text club by texting the word “choir” to 78816.
Start a NEW holiday tradition and bring the family to the Numerica Credit Union Hometown Holiday on December 1 in Downtown Kennewick from 10 am to 2 pm. An old-fashioned parade welcoming Santa and featuring holiday themed floats, police and fire vehicles, and entertaining characters starts at 10:30 am. Thereafter, join Santa at Claus Plaza in his heated tent for free hot chocolate, kid’s activities and selfies. Last year more than 5,000 people lined Kennewick Ave. between Dayton and Auburn streets to experience holiday nostalgia.
Road closures/detours start at 9 am, and vehicles should be removed from the parade route by that time (parked outside of the green areas indicated on the parade route/road closure map). By noon, Kennewick Ave. will reopen to traffic. Afternoon activities will be limited to the “Flag Plaza” (aka “Claus Plaza”) parking lot at Kennewick Ave/Benton St. until 2 pm.
Visit Go2Kennewick.com/Holidays for additional information.
For more information, please contact Brandon Lange at (509) 585-4279 or email@example.com.
LifePoint Health and RCCH HealthCare Partners have completed their merger and will now begin operating as one, united company under the LifePoint Health name.
As part of the LifePoint network, Lourdes Health and Trios Health are now connected to an even stronger network of community hospitals, regional health systems, physician practices, outpatient centers and post-acute facilities that span 30 states. This will bring new opportunities to grow and thrive in the rapidly evolving, competitive healthcare landscape.
While there are great opportunities ahead, much about how our hospitals operate today – including our dedication to our patients, employees, physicians, and community – will remain the same, and we do not anticipate any changes in how our patients access our hospitals and healthcare providers. People throughout the Tri-Cities region can continue to count on our committed staff and physicians at Lourdes and Trios to provide excellent care that makes our community healthier.
We look forward to sharing more about the newly-expanded LifePoint Health as it relates to our community in the future.
On November 2, many of our community’s most generous individuals gathered together to celebrate philanthropy at Kadlec. The annual event, Celebration of Philanthropy, is hosted by Kadlec Foundation to recognize charitable individuals and businesses in our community who give of their time and make impactful investments towards programs and services that benefit patients at Kadlec Regional Medical Center and members of our community as a whole.
This year’s recognized philanthropists are:
Kadlec Foundation is extremely grateful to everyone who attended, including our award winners and our generous donors. The community is invited to be a part of this ongoing work and can get more information by contacting Whitney Clark, development officer, at (509) 942-2661 or visiting www.kadlec.org/foundation.
Now is the time to start assembling holiday-themed floats for the Numerica Hometown Holiday Parade, welcoming Santa to downtown Kennewick on December 1. More than 5,000 people are expected to line the Kennewick Avenue parade route to celebrate Santa’s arrival, participate in Claus Plaza activities and shop local merchants.
New this year, Numerica Credit Union will award a $250 gift card to the best float design and $100 to the most inspired second place entry. Organizations, businesses and individuals are encouraged to participate. Entry is free and applications are due November 18.
In response to last year’s higher than expected turnout for the first-time event, organizers are increasing efforts to actively recruit unique and entertaining parade entries. “People had a blast last year,” said Brandon Lange, Recreation, Facility and Marketing Supervisor at the City of Kennewick. “It’s an opportunity for kids, families and our community to celebrate the most wonderful time of the year, and be entertained by creative and festive floats, musicians and performers.”
Floats and participants congregate at 9:30a on December 1 for the 10:30-11a parade. Visit Go2Kennewick.com/Holidays for application and details.
For more information, please contact Brandon Lange at (509) 585-4279 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
STCU will open its Southridge Financial and Home Loan Center with a ribbon cutting at 4 p.m. November 26. It’s the first Tri-Cities location for the credit union, a not-for-profit financial cooperative with roots in education.
“Our Tri-Cities members tell us they’re excited we’ll be able to serve them in person,” said Ezra Eckhardt, STCU’s president and CEO. “We’re thrilled, too, to be opening in Tri-Cities after years of planning and to be building strong community connections.”
The Southridge Financial and Home Loan Center, 4704 W. Hildebrand Blvd. in Kennewick, will offer a full slate of services for consumers and businesses, including checking, savings, and investment accounts; home, auto, and personal loans; and credit cards. It will house STCU Home Loans offices, a drive-through, and 24-hour ATMs.
STCU membership is open to anyone in Washington.
“People in the Tri-Cities are going to love STCU,” said Jaleh Flinders, a Kennewick native who will serve as branch manager of the Southridge location. “It’s an organization that carefully considers members’ financial well-being as part of every decision, big or small. We take our ‘Here for good’ promise seriously.”
The credit union also announced today it has purchased property at Queensgate in Richland. It’s renovating the building with plans to open the STCU Queensgate Financial Center, 2590 Queensgate Drive, with another ribbon cutting at 3 p.m. January 7. The Queensgate location, led by Branch Manager Sabrina Barrera, also will offer a full array of financial services.
STCU plans to open a Pasco branch location in 2019.
Earlier this year, STCU purchased land along Keene Road in Richland. Plans for that property aren’t finalized.
A small group of educators started the Spokane-based credit union in 1934, with a shoebox for members’ cash. It has grown to more than 180,000 members, including 2,400 already living in the Tri-Cities. The Southridge location is No. 23 for the credit union.
STCU has been named the region’s best credit union for 13 consecutive years in reader surveys conducted by Spokane’s Inlander newspaper. STCU each year provides free financial education to thousands of people, hosts back-to-school events for teachers in more than 20 school districts, and sponsors many events related to education, the arts, and the community.