CLEARWATER VALLEY — I’ve been seeing bald eagles perched on trees or fishing along the South Fork and Middle Fork Clearwater rivers on my way to work. This magnificent bird has been an official symbol of our country since 1782, representing freedom and strength. We almost lost the species in the 1960’s. Bald eagle populations have since recovered to roughly 10,000 breeding pairs thanks to the conservation protections in the Endangered Species Act. The recovery of bald eagles is a true conservation success story with delisting in 2007. It would be a terrible thing to lose the bird that symbolizes our freedom. While there has been a lot of hype this fall about a different symbol of our freedom, the national anthem, I am thankful that bald eagles have endured and are still flying high!

A friend and I checked out the Clearwater Christmas Affair in Kamiah last Friday. Happy sounds, festive colors, and enticing scents filled the Legion Hall in Kamiah. A good variety of items, including birdhouses decorated with colorful stones, whimsical clay Christmas ornaments, delicate wheat weavings, handmade hats, spicy jellies and pieces and parts of old jeans upcycled into purses and bags. Great to support local craftspeople at this two-day Small Business Saturday event!

The book fair at the Kooskia’s Clearwater Valley Elementary School is continuing all week, 8 a.m.- 5 p.m. on Thursday and 8 a.m. -2 p.m., on Friday, Dec. 1. New children’s books are on sale as a fund-raiser for the school. Books make great Christmas presents for the young people in your life!

In case you missed the Valley Singers and Bell Ringers Christmas concert on Wednesday, you’ll get another chance on Sunday, Dec. 3. This free concert begins at 3 p.m., at St. Catherine’s Catholic Church at 407 7th Street in Kamiah. The Children of God Singers will lead off the concert with some traditional Christmas songs.

Sadly, there are a lot of people in our communities who don’t have enough to eat. To help people have a good Christmas dinner, the Emergency Feeding Outreach in Kamiah will be organizing and filling Christmas food baskets on Dec. 14-15 at Community Presbyterian Church (7th and Hill streets). They are looking for volunteers; call Janet Cruz at 208-935-0245 if you can help either day. If you would like to apply to receive a food basket, stop by the Community Action Partnership Office at 615 4th Street, in Kamiah and fill out an application by Dec. 5.

With the days getting shorter, it’s nice to eat dinner early and let someone else do the cooking. You’re invited to a pancake supper on Wednesday, Dec. 6, from 4:30-6:30 p.m., at the Community Presbyterian Church (7th and Hill Streets) Kamiah. In addition to dinner, baked goods and Christmas candy, a silent auction will take place.

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