Would you like to share a Valentine with a local person and make their day? Here’s your chance. Grangeville Health and Rehabilitation will be host to a Valentine party with sweet treats Thursday, Feb. 14, 3:15 p.m. All residents will have a Valentine bag hanging outside his or her door so Va…

GRANGEVILLE – The pieces all came together perfectly, Camden Schacher said.

GRANGEVILLE – “You had a very good year,” accountant Carl Swenson told the Syringa Hospital board Tuesday, Jan. 22.

Local enrichment classes through Lewis-Clark State College Grangeville Outreach are continuing.

Mark your calendars: Grangeville Arts’ Annual Sushi Night is set for Saturday, March 2, starting at 5:30 p.m. at The Gallery. Cost is $25; call 208-983-2595 for reservations as limited seating is available. There will be a sushi bar, orange chicken, fried rice, edamame and vegetable options.

It's Your Business

This in from Jeff Kutner, Grangeville Chamber of Commerce: “Be aware that the scammers are out pretending to be Avista Utilites, saying that your electricity is going to be cut off within the hour for nonpayment. This is a scam. They also make it seem like they are calling from Avista's 800 …

    The Community Action Partnership (CAP) may be able to help those who qualify with their utility bills. The assistance goes toward customers’ energy bills during the cold winter months.

      John Trueblood, a physician assistant and retired Navy corpsman, will begin seeing patients at St. Mary’s Clinics in Craigmont on Mondays and Wednesdays, in Nezperce on Tuesdays and Fridays, and in the Cottonwood clinic on Thursdays.

        Don’t forget: On Saturday, Jan. 19, the people’s march for inclusion and equality of all people is planned in Grangeville. The event is based at the Holy Trinity Episcopal Church Fellowship Hall at 311 S. Hall Street. After optional sign-making at 10:30 a.m., participants will gather by 11:30 a.m. to begin the march on the sidewalks of downtown Grangeville.

          Idaho’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 2.6 percent in November, down slightly from October and continuing at or below 3 percent for the 15th consecutive month. The state’s labor force – the total number of people 16 years of age and older working or looking for work – was 854,243, increasing by 0.1 percent and essentially unchanged since July. Total employment increased by 1,198 to 831,851, while the number of unemployed people decreased by 433 to 22,392.

            More than 103,154 Idahoans enrolled in health insurance coverage for the 2019 plan year during open enrollment held from Nov. 1 through Dec. 15, 2018, through Your Health Idaho, the state’s health insurance marketplace. This is the second highest number of enrollments Your Health Idaho has experienced since inception. Enrollment numbers for 2019 grew by more than 1 percent, with 83 percent of customers renewing their plans.

              With the arrival of the sustained colder temperatures, heating systems are operating more frequently and for longer periods of time, which can increase monthly energy costs. Avista suggests checking your home’s air flow and making sure to use supplemental heating sources efficiently to help manage your winter energy bill. Making sure door sweeps are in good condition and caulking around windows and doors will help prevent cold air from seeping in under doors. As a temporary measure, roll a towel and place at the base of exterior doors. Other no-cost recommendations include:

                Elk Mountain Logging, owned by Jeff Adams of Grangeville, was featured in the November 2018 edition of the trade magazine “Loggers World.” “Elk Mountain Logging in Grangeville is an operation of five loggers and enjoys the services of six owner-operator truck drivers to keep the logs moving to the mill,” the article states.

                  A Beginning Spanish Language and Culture class is set to begin Jan. 24. This will run Mondays and Thursdays, for six weeks, through March 14. The courses are offered through Lewis-Clark State College Grangeville Outreach and will be instructed by Francisca Garner each evening from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Cost is $68. Registration closes Jan. 16. Call 208-983-2164 to register or e-mail coordinator Carla Nuxoll Wilkins at cnwilkins@lcsc.edu.

                    In 2018, small-business optimism, and with it, boosts in hiring and employee compensation, soared through the ceiling. Can it continue in 2019? Results from a survey of National Federation of Independent Business/Idaho (NFIB Idaho) members recently released shows how it can—and it can without any help or hindrance from the Legislature.

                      Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Cottonwood Field Office’s Ryan Turner was recently presented the “Outstanding Contribution to the River Management Society Award” by the River Management Society (RMS) during its symposium in Vancouver, Wash. During the 50th anniversary year celebrating Wild and Scenic Rivers, Turner received the award for his service to the society and leadership of the Northwest Chapter River Ranger Rendezvous. The symposium was attended by river managers from across the United States. Turner’s involvement with the RMS began when he earned a year’s membership by winning a wild and scenic rivers photo contest in 2011 while working for the BLM in a seasonal river ranger position. Since then he has given back to the organization through leadership roles with the Northwest Chapter of RMS, serving as secretary in the past and as the current vice president.

                      After more than 22 years as owners of The Health Food Store in Grangeville, Mondo and Jude Leon are stepping aside. Their daughter Libby, and her husband, Rodney Peck, took over the store Jan. 1. “We are so excited to do this, to continue this family business,” Libby said. The Leons moved to Grangeville in 1990.

                        Animal Ark is extending the time for its spay/neuter co-pay offer. If you are in need of financial assistance to spay/neuter your pet, call Camas Veterinary Hospital in Grangeville at 208-983-0508 for an appointment and for the amount you are responsible to pay for the procedure. Help control unwanted, abandoned and abused pet population by spaying/neutering your pet.

                          MERIDIAN – Blue Cross of Idaho, the state’s leading health insurer, recently announced a new strategy to help address opioid use in Idaho. In a recent internal study, Blue Cross found that limiting an opioid prescription length and opioid strength can cut new users by 45-percent. Across the nation, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services estimates that 12.5 million Americans have reported misusing opioids. Health and Human Services also reports that opioid abuse results in 89 deaths per day in the United States.

                          Peg Gehring a Family Nurse Practitioner recently earned her Doctorate of Nursing Practice from Idaho State University, Gehring’ s focus was on overall pain management. One of the first things she learned is that there is no formula for managing pain like there in other areas such as diabetes and high blood pressure.

                            The North Central Idaho Small Business Development Center at Lewis-Clark State College will be offering a workshop on the basics of accounting and record keeping on Jan. 18 at 9-11:30 a.m. at the SBDC office, located at 406 Main St. in Lewiston. The workshop will cover records, decision-making, language of money, report analysis, building wealth, taxes, and financial tools. The cost of the workshop is $20, and it will be taught by Barbara Leachman. Preregistration is required for the workshop. To preregister or for more information on the workshop call 208-792-2465, e-mail isbdc@lcsc.edu, or visit the web site www.lcsc.edu/sbdc.

                            “I am glad to be here to help offer more flexibility and services to our patients,” said Kyle Westhoff. Westhoff recently joined Syringa Physical Therapy and will work with the four existing PTs and two aides in the Grangeville office. Kooskia also has two PTs in its clinic.

                              Grangeville High School students have started off their school year on the path to technology proficiency. More than 40 students recently took and passed the Microsoft Office Specialist certification.

                                Unclaimed property lies in the possession of the State of Idaho awaiting to be claimed by residents. The following is a selected list provided by the Idaho Tax Commission on Idaho County residents owed $25 or more in unclaimed property:

                                  The Idaho County recycling sites (Grangeville, Cottonwood and Kooskia) will be closed on Saturday, Dec. 22, for Christmas but will be open on Saturday, Dec. 29.

                                    Two Idaho County ag producers will be presenters at the upcoming Three Rivers Grazing Conference in Lewiston. Dion Heckman of White Bird, and Derrick Stuivenga of Grangeville, will be presenting on using drones for cattle surveillance and herding.

                                    “I’ve been really fortunate – this job has been more like a hobby to me,” said Mike Clovis. On Dec. 21, the shortest day of the year, Clovis will have his shortest workday: He will leave Gortsema Motors and delve into the land of retirement.

                                      The public is invited to join SHC staff for brown bag presentations by providers of Syringa Hospital and Clinics. The next presentation speaker and topic is set for Monday, Dec. 17, with Kimberly Campbell, MD, who will speak on “The Pathology of Alzheimer’s.” This will be on understanding this most common form of dementia. The presentation will be held at the Soltman Center in Grangeville from 12:15 –12:45 p.m.

                                      With about five months under their belts, Michael and Judy Ozmer are ready for a grand opening. “It’s going to be a great celebration,” Judy smiled. The Ozmers purchased Oscar’s Restaurant – now named “The Trails” – Aug. 1. The grand opening is set for Dec. 31.

                                        Three Rivers Rafting has changed ownership. Parts of the business were purchased by both Hughes River Expeditions, and Hunt Paddison and Mira Warner. All float boat and fishing operations on the upper Selway River through the Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness Area will now be conducted under permit by Hughes River Expeditions.

                                        A segment of local history will bid adieu to Grangeville this week. GoBidToday.com, in cooperation with United Country Real Estate/Musick and Sons Auction and Real Estate Services, will sell Ted Billups’ tractor and memorabilia collection. The on-line auction of more than 30 collectible tractors, as well as hundreds of manuals, toys and other keepsakes, will end Thursday, Nov. 29, 3 p.m. MST. The final preview or inspection of items is today, Wednesday, Nov. 28, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., at the Billups’ north Grangeville shops. “So far, we have 137 registered bidders from 23 states, three from Canada and one from Australia,” said auctioneer Kyle Musick on Monday.

                                        After publication of the article “County renews historic preservation commission” (Nov. 21, 7A), some people close to the matter told the Free Press our report did not accurately portray the reasons five former members quit the Idaho County Historic Preservation Commission.

                                        “Syringa’s current VA agreement will expire March 27, 2019,” Syringa CEO Abner King said Tuesday evening, Nov. 13. “Our challenge all along has been recruiting a person to work in the VA clinic.” King spoke to a crowd of about 50 people at the Idaho County Veterans and Community Outreach Center during a Syringa Town Hall meeting.

                                          The Cutest Trick-or-Treater contest, sponsored by Cloninger’s Marketplace, Advanced Welding and Steel, Stuivenga Vessey Drilling & Pumps and Idaho County Free Press, was won by little Josie Vrieling who received the most votes on her Halloween cow costume (pictured above, left). She is seen here (top, left) with her mom, Sarah Corder, and prizes (top, right) generously donated by Monster & Eli- 2 yeti monsters (value $112), Tato+Toddle Toy Club -wood pull toy (value $89), True Log Homes- chainsaw carved pumpkin (value $80), and Stuivenga Vessey Drilling & Pumps ($100 cash + 2 shirts). A Free Press favorite, “Bob Ross,” is also pictured (above, right).

                                          YONCALLA, Ore. – Not only has the small town of Yoncalla, Ore., elected an 18-year-old as its mayor, but that 18-year-old also has strong ties to Grangeville. Ben Simons, the son of 1981 Grangeville High School graduate Cheryl Ruzicka, was elected as mayor with 41 percent of the votes in the Tuesday, Nov. 6, election. His grandmother, Bettie Ruzicka, owns Bettie’s Floor and Décor in Grangeville.

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