The Wahkiakum County Eagle - Established as The Skamokawa Eagle in 1891

Downriver Dispatches

News of Western Wahkiakum County and Naselle


January 24, 2019

It might be said “Who are you to tell us about trees?" I may know more or less about trees than most, however, from my observations, clear cutting of our forests leaves an ugly scar on the landscape that will clear up in time. I just do not like the way it looks and the impact it has on the environment. I highly sympathize with those who are employees of the logging/lumber industry and in no way want them to lose their jobs. Is there a better way to make wood products without destroying the beauty of our forests while being able to maintain the same level of economic employment as before and/or increasing employment? You know it can be done. Change occurs as markets change. One example is the shoe market. The majority of footwear now has rubber soles as opposed to leather.

Before we delve into the issue of change, let me digress for a moment and tell you about a man, who changed history. Most people know little or nothing of this man who was born a slave and yet would impact this nation and the world forever. His name was George Washington Carver who would become known as “The Peanut Man.” In 1921, appearing on behalf of the peanut industry in front of the U.S. House of Representatives’ Ways and Means Committee, Carver was seeking tariff protection. In his testimony he expressed the wide range of commodities that could made from peanuts, which convinced the committee to approve a high protected tariff for the conventional peanut.

I am not saying that we replace the trees with peanuts, not at all. There are many other things that could replace many of the former tree products, and one commodity has come in place in the last five years and that comes from the cannabis industry. I’m not talking about the type of weed that gets you high. That has already been established. I’m talking about industrial hemp. Yes, it is a species of cannabis sativa, but it grows taller and has less than one percent THC, therefore no buzz like the medical or recreational marijuana.

Here are a few examples of what industrial hemp can be made into: concrete, fiberboard, insulation, mulch, chemical absorbent, animal bedding, netting, rope, bags, shoes, and clothes. The Hemp Industries Association has estimated that one recent year the hemp industry had estimated retail sales in hemp products around $620 million. That’s a lot of cheese. Sadly though, most of these products were imported. It must be noted that just one acre of hemp will produce the same amount of cellulose fiber pulp equal to four acres of trees.

Laws have changed, so industrial hemp can be grown in all 50 states. It is not taking long for the mega corporations to sit up and take notice and get their piece of the pie. It is possible and very likely that for the future we can make the change and still keep our jobs without the expense of the beauty around us.

Any questions, comments, critiques, or ideas for future stories, please feel free to contact me at I will try to respond to as many as I can via The Eagle with the editor’s approval.

Naselle/Grays River Valley Seniors

I am not sure how many of you readers who are seniors have been to Rosburg Hall on Wednesday at noon for lunch. You can always expect great food at an affordable price.

On Wednesdays the Naselle/Grays River Valley Seniors will have lunch prepared for those over 60. For those who are wondering how it is done, it is all done by the humble volunteers who donate their time and energy to see that at least one meal for the seniors is a good one.

Every Tuesday Harry Hardey and his wife, Donna, go to WinCo or Cash & Carry for the necessary food items for lunch. At 9 a.m. Wednesday’s luncheon preparations are started by Harry and Donna and many others who volunteer until the last of the clean-up is finished around 2 p.m. Last week Harry prepared a stuffed pork loin that was worth waiting for. As I was leaving, I noticed a little man quietly and humbly sweeping the floor. I do not know his name, but a few readers do. He epitomizes the spirit of those who sacrifice their time for others. Anyone inspired to follow in their footsteps and volunteer or would like further information, please contact the Naselle/Grays River Valley Seniors president Diane Hollenbeck at or phone her at 1(360) 465-2991. Don’t forget that every third Wednesday the seniors meet at Valley Bible Church for potluck.

Community Action Program

And then there is the Thursday noon luncheon at the Rosburg Hall sponsored by the Community Action Program (CAP) out of Kelso/Longview. All vegetables are cooked at the Rosburg Hall while the main course is prepared by cooks in Kelso at Grounds for Opportunity. Marian Bradburn picks up the food for delivery for senior lunch in Cathlamet and Rosburg. This week’s lunch consists of pork chops, mashed potatoes, gravy, peas and carrots, and sliced oranges. Any questions, contact Denise Rae at (360) 425-3430 extension 259.

Open Mic in Skamakowa

This Sunday, January 27 Skamakowa Grange # 425 next to the fairgrounds will have an open mic music event. Those of you who live west of the KM should come and check this out. Bring your musical instruments, family, and friends for a wonderful night of local talent. The sign up is at 3:45 p.m. and starts at 4 p.m. A jam session will follow. The coffee is always on, and some snacks will be available. Admission is free, but donations to the Grange are appreciated. For additional information phone Jerry Ledtke at 360-795-3434.

Naselle/Grays River Schools:

For all you Naselle basketball enthusiasts, get excited about traveling to Firm Foundation Christian at 1919 SW 25th Way in Battle Ground today (Thursday). Junior varsity starts at 5:45 and varsity begins at 7 p.m.

On Friday, the MS Knowledge Bowl team competes at Grays Harbor College. They will depart Naselle at 7 a.m.

On Monday high school boys and girls will play basketball at Columbia Adventist Academy Battle Ground.

Tuesday, the middle school boys basketball team takes on Ocosta in Westport, starting at 5:45 p.m.

Wednesday, MS boys basketball team travels to South Bend; seventh grade starts at 5:45 p.m.

Naselle Timberland Library:

This small library is located at 4 Parpala Rd, Naselle. Their hours: Saturday, 11a.m. to 4 p.m .; Tuesday and Wednesday 11a.m. to 8 p.m., and Friday 11a.m. to 5 p.m. On Tuesday, 6 p.m., enjoy some popcorn while you watch popular releases. Movies may be PG-13 rated and suitable for teen or adult audiences. Check with the library for this week's title. Popcorn provided courtesy of the Friends of the Naselle Timberland Library.


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