Tag Archive for: Washougal

In recognition of her exceptional contributions in guiding and inspiring students, Margaret Rice of Washougal School District is one of two educators nationwide to earn the YouScience Innovative Educator Award this year. Rice serves as the Career & Technical Education (CTE) director at Washougal School District.

Rice inspires students to build job readiness skills in elementary, middle, and high school. She develops innovative programs that equip students with tools to be successful in the world of work, and champions new ideas to adjust to the evolving workforce.

“Margaret connects students with business and industry leaders, and she supports all of our students in developing the job readiness skills they need to succeed in the skilled trades, business, military, or college,” said Mary Templeton, Washougal School District Superintendent. “She is a phenomenal asset to our district, and we are so proud of her and the amazing work she leads.”

The YouScience Innovative Educator Award celebrates educators who have implemented innovative approaches to empower the next generation of professionals through academic and career exploration. Rice is recognized alongside Kathy Peres of Blue Valley Schools in Kansas. This honor celebrates their outstanding contributions in leading students towards successful career exploration and readiness for the ever-evolving professional landscape.  


About YouScience

YouScience® is the leading technology provider dedicated to solving the skills and exposure gap crisis for students and employers. Its end-to-end platform, YouScience® Brightpath, connects education with career applications designed to help students unlock their potential for future pathways. YouScience leverages proven research, artificial intelligence, and industry input to help individuals identify their aptitudes, validate their skills and knowledge, and get matched with real-world educational and career pathways in high-demand occupations. YouScience is the preferred choice of individuals, parents, educators, and counselors to guide and support educational and career pathways, currently serving more than 7,000 educational institutions and millions of users nationwide. To learn more about YouScience, please visit youscience.com

About Washougal School District

Washougal School District is a public school district serving over 2,800 students in Washougal, Washington. Dedicated staff teams, supportive community and innovative job-readiness programs create an educational experience that prepares Washougal youth for success.

Athol, Idaho — Anava and Joela Grundy, 5th grade students at Columbia River Gorge Elementary, competed at the USATF Junior Olympics Regional XC Meet in Athol, Idaho, on November 18.  The twins feed their passion for running by taking part in the Boosters’ Mileage Club, a running program organized by school volunteers. They also participate in Whisper Running, a local youth running organization, since September 2022.

“I love to run because it allows me to be active in the outdoors. I love the different trails and enjoy running in nature,” said Anava.  

Anava and Joela were the only Whisper Running members from Washougal to qualify for USATF Junior Olympics Regionals this year. 

“I’m really proud of them for trying a new thing and sticking with it even when it gets difficult,” said Dave Caldwell, running coach at Whisper Running.

“Running for me is such a great sport because I can set personal goals and focus on them to get stronger,” said Joela. 

The Boosters’ Mileage Club at Columbia River Gorge Elementary helps Anava and Joela consistently train their cross country skills and inspires them to do their best. This weekly running program is spearheaded by volunteers Annie Thomas and Sadie McKenzie. McKenzie is also a member of the Washougal School District school board. 

“It’s amazing to see what these kids accomplish. I volunteer with the Boosters Mileage Club because you get to make a real difference in students’ lives,” said McKenzie.

Programs like the Columbia River Gorge Boosters Mileage Club help Washougal students to discover a passion for exercise. Booster club volunteers make this and many other student-centered programs across Washougal School District possible. Learn more about volunteer opportunities at Washougal School District on the district volunteer webpage.

For Anava and Joela, this is just the beginning. Beginning this year, cross country programs in Washougal expanded to include 6th grade students in Washougal. This comes just in time for the duo to represent Jemtegaard Middle School when they enter sixth grade next year.

Joela Grundy accepts a token after finishing another lap around the track.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is hosting an interfaith event this Saturday, October 28 as part of National Make a Difference Day. Event organizers are seeking volunteers between 2-5 pm this Saturday (any amount of time is appreciated). 

Their goal is to complete the following projects:

  • Sorting 32,000 pounds of hygiene commodities for families in the Evergreen School District (an entire semi-truck load)
  • Tying 75 fleece blankets for Project Linus providing blankets for children seriously ill, traumatized or otherwise in need.
  • 3,000 meal kits that will each feed a family of 6.
  • 500 Valentine’s Cards to bring love to those in assisted living.
  • 1,000 family gathering and educational kits and school support projects for schools in our community.
  • Collect unwrapped toys for the Camas/Washougal Salvation Army.

All projects will directly benefit our local community including;  Evergreen, Camas and Washougal Schools, Clark County Food Bank, Camas/Washougal Salvation Army, Camas/Washougal Interfaith Treasure House, Project Linus, and Local Senior Living Centers.

The event is for women 18+.

Easy project directions, materials and refreshments will be provided by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Please review the available slots below and click on the button to sign up. 

Sign up here: https://m.signupgenius.com/#!/showSignUp/10C0A49ABAB2CA1FF2-interfaith

Saturday, October 28, 2023  2 pm – 5 pm

East Vancouver Stake Center   

18214 NE 18th St. Vancouver WA

If you have any questions please contact:

Caryn Dewey 360.909.3745, Amanda Houston 360.624.4168, or Laurie Kinsey 360.433.7847

Camas-Washougal, WA — Local storyteller Pepper Toelle Kim will recount the real events of her ancestor’s 1844 wagon train journey along the Oregon Trail at the annual meeting of the Camas-Washougal Historical Society.  The free CWHS program is open to all on Saturday, November 4 at 2pm at the Washougal Community Room at 1681 C Street, near City Hall.

“Like many Oregon Trail journeys, the saga of my ancestors’ wagon train seems like a novel, with its array of trials, sorrows, and triumphs,” said Kim.

Kim’s ancestors traveled alongside historic settlers David C. Parker, Michael Troutman Simmons, and George Washington Bush in their seven-month passage. Parker was the first permanent American settler in Washington and present-day Washougal.  He created a dock, ferry service, and the town of Parkersville on the north bank of the Columbia River where the Camas-Washougal Port is now located.

Kim hopes her presentation will provide the audience with a deeper understanding of pioneer experiences in general, and the particular challenges experienced by David C. Parker and other early Washington settlers. 

“Hearing the tale of a particular group engages one more, especially if the storyteller has a personal connection,” she explained.

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The sheer courage that pioneers demonstrated moving to an unknown area is impressive to Kim.  

“Especially if you had children to care for,” she said. “To me, the most difficult times were the deaths of fellow travelers, especially the Sager parents of seven children.”

Kim is a retired alternative high-school teacher who taught at Evergreen ALC/Legacy High School from 1986 to 2011. She earned her BA in English and teaching credential from Mills College, and her MS in (Alternative) Education from Western Illinois University. She is a member of the Daughters of the Pioneers of Washington, Ft. Vancouver Chapter #19.

In 2004, Kim also was awarded a Confluence Project in the Schools grant. Her community liaison for that project was the Clark County Historical Museum, where her students’ art creation was displayed. She has volunteered for CCHM ever since.

As a grandparent, Kim is inspired to bring her ancestors’ stories to life. 

“I am a Portland native, yet I had no idea I had connections to SW Washington until I started learning local history,” Kim said. “We are all more connected than we realize!”

The CWHS operates the Two Rivers Heritage Museum, 1 Durgan Street in Washougal. It is currently closed for winter maintenance and will reopen March 2, 2024.  Private group tours, for more than eight people, can be arranged by contacting the museum.  Prices are $5 for adults, $4 for seniors and just $2 for students.  

CWHS members can visit for free. 

Join the CWHS to help support additional historic presentations and preservation of local history. Membership information will be available at the presentation.  Learn more about the museum and volunteer and membership opportunities, visit www.2rhm.com and follow them on Facebook.

Oregon Trail
Pepper Kim

The Camas-Washougal Community Chest launched its annual fundraising drive October 1, 2023 with a goal of raising $120,000 for 2024 grants. In a continuing partnership with CWCC, the Camas – Washougal Rotary Foundation plans to provide additional grant funds. The combined monies are used to fund grants to local non-profit organizations that serve Camas and Washougal residents in need, at-risk youth programs, address natural resource conservation, foster education and strive to enhance diversity, equity and inclusivity in Camas and Washougal. Since 1946 the CWCC has been all about helping local charities thrive

The CWCC, CWRF and Camas Lions Club just wrapped up a successful 2023 campaign which saw them fund 30 grants for a total of $135,500. Programs and projects funded in 2023 included support of the local food bank run by Inter-Faith Treasure House, funding for family support programs run by Children’s Home Society of Washington, funding a portion of Family Promise’s Cares prevention program to help low income families avoid losing their home, funding habitat improvements in the Gibbons Creek watershed conducted by the Lower Columbia Estuary Partnership and funding for food and food service supplies for the local Meals on Wheels People program. 

Other grants provided funding for cancer treatment costs and living expenses not covered by insurance; funding for several local reading programs; funding registration fees, transportation costs, and food and housing costs for local low- income robotics team members; and for temporarily housing at-risk youth in a secure facility. A full list of the grants awarded in 2023 is attached. 

Major support for the 2023 fundraising campaign came from Georgia Pacific employees and the Georgia Pacific Foundation. 

Other major donors in 2023 included HP employees and the HP Corporation, Camas and Washougal School District employees, City of Camas and Washougal employees, Port of Camas-Washougal employees, Watercare Industrial Services, Columbia Rock Products (Sauer Holdings LLC) and Waste Connections. The following foundations provided major support: Windermere Foundation, the Tidland Christian Development Fund, and the Hinds Charitable Fund. 

To reach its $120,000 goal for the 2024 campaign, the CWCC needs donations from individuals and businesses in Camas and Washougal. More information and donation forms can be found on the CWCC’s website at: www.CamasWashougalCommunityChest.org 

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The CWCC is a registered 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization for federal charitable tax deduction purposes. Says CWCC President Mindy Schmidt, “giving to the Community Chest is an easy and efficient way to help people in need in our hometown.” 

Local non-profit organizations planning to apply for a grant can download the 2024 application form from CWCC’s website after October 15, 2023. Applications for 2024 grants are due by no later than December 15, 2023. Applicants will be informed during March 2024 as to whether their project or program is funded and at what level. Grant payments are made quarterly beginning with initial payments in March 2024. 

To be eligible for a grant, applicants must provide services in Camas and/or Washougal, be a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization and provide service in one or more of the following areas: education, youth activities, aid to people with special needs, natural resource conservation, health and welfare programs, crisis and emergency services and diversity, equity and inclusivity. 

2023 Grant Program Summary 

Total number of grants awarded – 30
Total value of grants awarded – $135,500
Estimated number of individual services funded by grants – more than 19,500 

Camas-Washougal, WA – The Community Garden Club’s decades of service in Parker’s Landing Historical Park ended in 1999 with a granite plaque placed in the grass near the garden volunteers’ garden shed and a dogwood was planted nearby. The expressions of gratitude to the club was most likely initiated by Rosalee MacRae, park advocate and founder who was also a Community Garden Club member. Rosalee served as the Parkersville Site Development Committee Secretary, continuing her service as a Parkersville National Historic Site Advisory Committee (PAC) to the Port member until her passing. 

In 1971, Rosalee attended a shower hosted by Mary Van Vleet in her guest house (formally the “little green house”) that had been converted into living quarters by Louis and Nina Chevron in 1942 when they discontinued their Parker’s Landing Dairy, also called Chevron and Sons. They closed their dairy due to the cost of pasteurization and decision to move out of the Van Vleet home they rented to be able to move in their son Vernon and his family.

In 1978, just before moving out, Mary Van Vleet invited Rosalee to her home. She had heard of Rosalee’s interest in seeing the inside of the 100 year-old main house. That year the paper reported others asking the Port to make the Van Vleet site a park, a request denied. At an American Association of University Women (AAUW), Dorothy Pionek put Rosalee in contact with Bernice Pluchos. In a public meeting called by the AAUW the idea of forming a historical society was put forth resulting in the Camas-Washougal Historical Society (CWHS). That year Mary passed away in August and in October the Van Vleet home was burned to the ground by an arsonist.

Downtown Camas

In 1980, a petition of nearly 1,200 names was submitted to the Port requesting the site become a park in perpetuity.  In 1985, notices were published in the newspaper inviting all interested citizens to join a committee named Parkersville Site Development Committee (PSDC). A month later a preliminary plan was presented to the Port with a 50-page park plan prepared by the PSDC and presented to the Port in 1986 with estimated costs to start the park. The first step was mounting the Department of Interior and State Bronze Plaques on a 25-ton Basalt boulder obtained from Fisher Rock Quarry. The dedication of the Parkersville National Historic and Archeological Site and opening of the Parker’s Landing Historical Park was held on Saturday, June 1, 1986.

At the Community Garden Club of Camas-Washougal (“Garden Club”) September meeting, Susan Tripp will share more about the park history and how Rosalee recruited her to join the PAC which led to being a PHF Director when Rosalee died. Susan’s presentation kicks off a new dedicated Garden Club team that will continue the club’s important history in the park. Learn more at the Community Garden Club of Camas-Washougal meeting in the Camas Community Center on Wednesday, September 27, 2023, at 1 pm. Meetings are open to the public.

For more information contact Diana Hogg, President at [email protected], or visit https://gardenclubofcamaswashougal.org/ and https://www.facebook.com/CommunityGardenClubOfCamasWashougal

Washougal, WA — Local residents and community leaders are invited to celebrate the ribbon cutting of Eagle View Park, a stunning addition to Washougal’s recreational landscape. Nestled between Ninebark Apartments and the Columbia River riparian area, Eagle View Park spans 1 acre and features a concrete paved walking path, meandering trails with seating, artwork, and community gathering spaces.

In a unique collaboration, Ninebark’s developer, Killian Pacific, partnered with the Port of Camas-Washougal to exchange land, aiding the Master Plan for the Camas-Washougal waterfront. The Port gained the property west of Ninebark, while the land Ninebark occupies went to Killian Pacific for its development. Killian Pacific created the 1-acre public park as part of the deal. The park is managed and maintained by the Ninebark community for 8 years, at which time the city will assume full responsibility. Ownership of both the park and the land lies with the city of Washougal.

WHERE: Eagle View Park, 600 S Marina Way, Washougal, WA 98671.

WHEN: Thursday, September 7 at 4 pm

General parking for the ribbon cutting ceremony is in the lots near Washougal Waterfront Park. Please plan to arrive at least 15 minutes prior to the event, as this will give you the opportunity to enjoy a short walk to the ceremony site.

For individuals with accessibility needs, designated parking is reserved in front of Riverside Retreat, situated on the southern side of Ninebark Apartments adjacent to Eagle View Park.

Washougal, WA — As the school year comes to a close, 2024 Regional Teacher of the Year Donna Schatz prepares students to apply tangible job-readiness skills in her engineering class at Washougal High School. Schatz was recently recognized as 2024 Regional Teacher of the Year by ESD 112 for her adaptability, understanding, and creative application of classroom skills to solve real world problems.

Students in Schatz’s class are creating their own proposals for managing stormwater runoff issues in the Washougal High School student parking lot. Kyle Rogers, local architect and internship program director at LSW Architects in Vancouver, visited the class to discuss design proposals with the students. Schatz develops these partnerships to bring job opportunities into the classroom.

“The most valuable part of this project is that students feel a sense of ownership over their school and a purpose to their work,” said Schatz. 

The project exposes students to real world applications for classroom work. “We’re creating rough draft proposals to add more green infrastructure to the parking lot, because the parking lot isn’t draining correctly and a bunch of parking spots aren’t usable when it rains because a huge puddle forms,” said Abraham White.

Students get creative to propose modern and realistic solutions to the problem at hand. 

“We’re looking at how adding permeable surfaces and plants can help the parking lot to drain better,” said Emylie Guido. 

Students complete this work in the classroom and outdoors on class visits to analyze the parking lot site. As the district begins planning processes with the City of Washougal and the Lower Columbia Estuary Partnership, these student proposals will provide some insight to student perspectives on the future of the Washougal High School student parking lot.

Schatz designs learning activities that are scaffolded, engaging, and relevant to both the students and the content standards. Engineering is one of many Career & Technical Education (CTE) course options available at Washougal High School. CTE combines technical, leadership, employability and academic skills to prepare students for success in education and in life. Students can learn about STEM careers as early as 7th grade continuing through high school in engineering, applied math and computer science classes or explore one of the nine other career clusters offered at Washougal High School.

Architect Kyle Rogers helps in the classroom.

Washougal, WA — The Camas-Washougal Chamber of Commerce held its annual awards banquet Tuesday honoring the Citizen, Business Persons, and Educators of the Years, as well as student scholarship recipients. Held at the Orchard Hills Golf Club, Executive Director Jennifer Senescu emceed the program. 

2023 Citizen of the Year: Pat Suggs

Contributions to the Community: Suggs has served the Camas-Washougal community for 47 years. During that time, she also raised six daughters. She was a volunteer teacher for the Camas Community Education Program, has been a Brownie and Girl Scout leader and although she doesn’t have boys, she was a Cub Scout leader, as well. 

Suggs has been the Young Women’s President at her church and is responsible for all of the 12-18 year olds. She runs a program to enhance the progressive growth of young girls. Suggs was also the Relief Society President at her church where she oversaw the activities of all Latter-Day-Saint (The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints) women ages 18 and over. It is the oldest women’s organization in the United States.

She works on food drives for the community. Including support for the Children’s Home Society of Washington. She also ran their backpack program for over 5 years. Suggs collects cups for Hathaway Elementary Schools Program of Affordable Gifts for Parents as well as clothing and shoes for the Family Resource Program for Washougal School District.  Suggs is a Book Fairy, which is a program that provides equitable opportunities for children to learn, grow and thrive. 

Today at 74 years old, Suggs is still involved in the community.  She serves on the Drug Take Back Program, the Unite Committee, Two Rivers Heritage Museum Committee and is Co-chair on the Washougal Safe Board. 

Pat also volunteers at Hathaway Elementary School each week where she helps teach reading and Spanish.  And, according to her husband, she does all of these things for one simple reason. Her love of this community. 

2023 Businessperson of the Year: Chris Dierickx, Straubs Funeral Home  

As the owner of Straubs Funeral home in Camas, Washington, Chris Dierickx has been a member of this community for over 26 years. Dierickx has helped thousands of families during what is one of the the hardest times in their lives. He makes himself available all hours of the day and night. He is genuinely caring and extremely compassionate. In his service, Dierickx wears many hats, including,  a shoulder to cry on, guide, rock and a friend to those in need. 

The C-W Chamber received a record number nominations for Chris to be named Businessperson of the Year for 2023. 

“It is a clear testament to his commitment and work in this community,” said Senescu. 

CW Businessperson of the Year Chris Dierickx (right) with CW Chamber Executive Director Jennifer Senescu and Washougal Mayor Dave Stuebe.

Educators of the Year: 

CCMS Science PLC Team at Washougal High School: Ryan Hooser and Patrick Rice

Ryan and Patrick, science teachers at Canyon Creek Middle School, are a high functioning team committed to their collaboration.  They use the instructional materials provided through the Amplify curriculum and supplement with hands-on experiments and activities for their students.  They spend time in each other’s classrooms learning and brainstorming new ideas on how to create engaging lessons for their classes. Their work, and focus on achievement, has resulted in state assessment scores far higher than the state average for science. 

Washougal Educators of the Year Ryan Hooser and Patrick Rice with WSD Superintendent Mary Templeton.

2023 Camas Educators of the Year: Stephanie Eakins and Whitney Patton

Stephanie Eakins and Whitney Patton came together in the Fall of 2021 to restructure and redesign the Adult Transition Program at Camas High School. They work with students aged 18-21 served by Individualized Educational Plans in the newly named Adult Transition Training Center (A.T.T.C.) housed at The Heights Learning Center. Although there may be teams that have worked together for a longer length of time, there is no team more committed to providing a positive and exceptional experience for their students. In the short time they have worked together, they have been able to impact a large number of students and are directly responsible for many of the successes that these young adults have achieved. 

Together they are able to motivate and encourage students who would otherwise feel lost within the constraints of the regular curriculum. They work hard at establishing a strong rapport with each individual and their families. Each can always be found going the extra mile that can make a difference for these students. Eakins and Patton both promote community access for their students and work hard to facilitate opportunities that allow them to learn real-world applicable skills that will support them as they move beyond a high school setting. 

Eakins and Patton truly believe in the concept of “firm goals, flexible means” as they continually improvise and modify for their students. They see and serve all students and families as they ready them for the transition into the world beyond the public school system. 

Camas Educators of the Year Stephanie Eakins and Whitney Patton.

2023 Camas High School Scholarship Recipient Olivia Brotherton  

Brotherton will be attending Oregon State University this fall where she plans on studying biology while she works toward becoming a veterinarian. At Camas High School, she is on The National Honor Society and is involved with the CHS Choir. Brotherton has volunteered with multiple local organizations including Buddy and Food Box Builder. She is involved with St. Joseph’s Church and has served as a Vacation Bible School Counselor. She has also served as an Equestrian Camp Counselor at Cantera Equestrian. Brotherton plans on doing an internship with Next-Vet this summer. 

2023 Washougal High School College Scholarship Recipient Carter Nichols

Nichols will be attending Eastern Washington University this Fall where he plans on studying nursing or pre-med. Three years ago, Nichols began as a volunteer at Legacy Salmon Creek Hospital. He spent the summer of 2021 completing a volunteer internship program where he spent 72 hours assisting with discharges, delivering meals and checking in visitors. Since Nichols turned 16, he has been a caregiver in the memory care unit at Touchmark. 

Nichols began taking health classes at Cascadia Technical Academy his junior year. He says that is what truly sparked his interest in the medical field. It’s also where he learned that caregivers must be good listeners and empathetic conversationalists. 

Nichols is one of five siblings. His mother is a social worker and his father is a Firefighter/paramedic. 

CW Scholarship recipients Olivia Brotherton and Carter Nichols.

United Precision Corp (UPC) held its official Grand Opening Friday night at the Steigerwald Commerce Center in Washougal with dozens of elected officials, business leaders, educators and citizens in attendance.

General Manager Robert Hawrylo was one of several UPC leaders who greeted guests, providing them an overview of their work and the facility.

UPC manufactures high tech seals and vertical launching system components for defense clients, such as the Navy, and spacecraft products (parts, seals, bolts) for SpaceX, a company led by Elon Musk. Their clients include the following companies and government entities:

  • NASA
  • SpaceX
  • Boeing
  • Moog Aircraft Group
  • United Launch Alliance
  • United States Navy
  • United States Air Force
  • Aerojet Rocketdyne
  • Lockheed Martin
  • Teledyne Technologies

UPC manufactures specialized machine seals for the space industry, including port seals, omega seals, beam seals and pressure-assisted seals.

The construction of this site has been several years in the making. The site was chosen for its business friendly environment, its beauty and ability to expand. 

They will have 20 employees working onsite and plan to have 100 in about a year.

UPC seals on display.
Guests were provided tours of the facility.