December 31, 2023

As we mark the end of 2023,
let us remember this creed in 2024!

Credit: Poem Hunter

December 30, 2023

New Year’s Space Needle fireworks, drone show to air live KING-5!

File photo via The Olympian shows fireworks surrounding the Space Needle in Seattle, Wash.
Credit: The Olympian via The Tri-City Herald.

New Year’s at the Needle fireworks, drone show will air live on KING 5

The event will feature hundreds of lighted drones in the Seattle sky in what is the largest structurally launched fireworks show in North America.

Excerpt from KING-5 TV News, Seattle:

T-Mobile New Year’s at the Needle is returning to the Space Needle this year, as part of a fireworks show that will be broadcast live in Seattle, Portland and Spokane.

Those in Seattle are invited to watch the show at the Seattle Center, with the best viewing available near the International Fountain. Viewers at home can tune in to the live one-hour broadcast on KING 5, KGW 8 in Portland and KREM 2 in Spokane starting at 11:30 p.m. You can also watch New Year’s at the Needle on KING 5+, our Roku, Amazon Fire and Apple TV apps available for download free or right here on KING5.com

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The New Year’s at the Needle show will feature hundreds of lighted drones in the Seattle sky in what is the largest structurally launched fireworks show in North America. All fireworks will be choreographed to a soundtrack celebrating the biggest moments of 2023. 

According to the Space Needle, this year’s event promises to be the “largest show yet in the event’s 32-year history.” 


December 30, 2023

Yelm stories of interest as 2023 comes to a close!

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is image.png
Aerial view of proposed 5 Corners roundabout.
Credit: City of Yelm Agenda, November 28, 2023

Heidi Haslinger, Steve Craig, and Steve Harshfield, Yelm Arts Commissioners, smile for a photo on Dec. 12 after the wind sculpture was unveiled. Crecit: Jacob Dimond, Nisqually Valley News.

Yelm news of interest as 2023 comes to a close

+ NVN: Yelm City Council unanimously approves early roundabout designs – WSDOT providing $1.35 million for efforts

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+ NVN: Yelm Arts Commission unveils ‘Ponderosa’ wind sculpture at head of Prairie Line Trail – Yelm’s Prairie Line Trail now has some eye candy at the start of the trailhead on Yelm Avenue as art commissioners unveiled the “Ponderosa” copper wind sculpture in the morning hours of Dec. 13.

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+ NVN: Mayor DePinto hopeful for future of Yelm YMCA, potential bond in January – Discussions for a potential YMCA in Yelm are heating up. Mayor Joe DePinto met with Kyle Cronk, CEO of South Sound YMCA, on Nov. 16 to view different renderings of what a Yelm YMCA could look if it is built.

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+ NVN: Yelm City Council approves municipal code changes – Smaller business vendors in Yelm may now receive a break in business license fees if they meet the required qualifications going forward. Yelm City Council opted to give smaller businesses in town more opportunities after voting to support a new special event vendor license, as well as an exemption to allow youth organizations or youth-run businesses to sell their products.

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+ NVN: Yelm Senior Center raises $21,000 in efforts to pay off organization’s mortgage – $45,000 due by 2026, money raised goes directly toward paying off balance.

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December 29, 2023

Deschutes Estuary Project in Olympia set to be restored!

Credit: Deschutes Estuary Restoration Project

Deschutes Estuary to be restored in Olympia

From the Office of Gov. Jay Inslee:

Capitol Lake is an artificial reservoir in Olympia created to mirror the capitol building. It’s overwhelmed by invasive species, and it’s been unusable for recreation since 2009. This week, the state and city began the process to restore the Deschutes Estuary, boosted by $7 million in Climate Commitment Act funds. The estuary will shelter salmon and other creatures. Invasive species will be destroyed and recreation restored. Lands inhabited by ancestors of Squaxin Island Tribal people will return to a more natural state. Deschutes Estuary Restoration Project manager Anne Larson recently detailed the project with TVW.


December 28, 2023

Planning for high-speed rail connecting Portland, Seattle funded by feds!

New high-speed rail service in the Cascadia High-Speed Rail Corridor between Oregon, Washington, and British Columbia proposed. Credit: U.S. Dept. of Transportation, Federal Railroad Administration.

Planning for high-speed rail connecting Portland, Seattle, Vancouver gets funding from feds

Excerpt from KING-5 TV News, Seattle via MSN:

A high-speed rail connecting Portland, Seattle and Vancouver is one step closer to being a reality after the project was awarded funding from the federal government

The Cascadia Ultra-High-Speed Ground Transportation project (UHSGT) was awarded a grant as part of $8.2 billion in funding the Biden Administration dedicated to passenger rail projects and planning efforts around the country. 

Washington’s congressional delegation, including Representatives Pramila Jayapal, Rick Larsen, Adam Smith, Derek Kilmer, Marilyn Strickland and Suzan DelBene penned a letter to the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) reaffirming their commitment to make the high-speed rail a reality. 

“Cities and counties across the nation want more frequent and more reliable intercity passenger rail service, and the Pacific Northwest is no exception,” the letter read. “The combined population of Seattle, Washington, Portland, Oregon, and Vancouver, British Columbia, is expected to grow by up to four million people by 2050. Reliable and efficient passenger rail service is and will continue to be essential to connecting communities across Washington.”


December 28, 2023

Recycling your Christmas trees in Thurston County!

Credit: Thurston County Solid Waste

Here’s where you can drop off your Christmas tree in Thurston County

Excerpt from KOMO-4 TV News, Seattle:

Looking to get rid of your Christmas tree soon? If you live in Thurston County, you have several options.

Prep your tree

Before you get rid of your tree, prepare it for recycling. Remove all ornaments, lights, stands, nails and tinsel before dropping off. Flocked trees are also accepted.

If you have any questions, search Christmas tree in the online directory of WhereDoITakeMy.org for program details.

Drop-off locations

All Thurston County residents: Trees are accepted at the Waste and Recovery Center located at 2420 Hogum Bay Road NE in Lacey from Dec. 26 through Jan. 21, with the exception of Jan. 1. Hours of operation are 7 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. Monday to Friday and 8 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. According to a release, customers with other waste, in addition to a tree, should expect to make two trips across the scale.

Rainier residents: Take your trees to the Rainier drop-box facility at 13010 Rainier Acres Road SE between Friday and Sunday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., from Dec. 29 through Jan. 21.

Rochester residents: Take your trees to the Rochester drop-box facility at 16500 Sargent Road SW from Dec. 26 through Jan. 21. The hours of operation are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday, Saturday and Sunday.

Tenino residents: Residents can take trees to 418 Wichman St. S from Dec. 26 through Jan. 14.

Yelm residents: Residents can place trees in a designated dumpster at 124 3rd St. SE anytime from Dec. 26 through Jan. 14.

Pick-up information

LeMay food/yard waste customers: Place your tree in or near your food and yard waste cart (in sections of 3 feet or less). Extra fees apply for customers not signed up for food and yard waste collection. Call LeMay at 360-923-0111 for information.


December 27, 2023

Yelm’s football stars Brayden Platt, Isaiah Patterson sign to Big Ten teams!

UCLA bound Isaiah Patterson and Oregon bound Brayden Platt smile prior to signing their National Letters of Intent on Dec. 20 inside of YHS’s gymnasium. Credit: The Chronicle (Centralia.

Thurston County high school football stars Brayden Platt, Isaiah Patterson sign to Big Ten teams

Excerpt from The Chronicle (Centralia):

Reality officially set in for two Yelm High School football standouts, Brayden Platt and Isaiah Patterson, as the two put ink to paper and each signed his National Letter of Intent (NLI) on Wednesday, Dec. 20 to officially join their respective college athletic programs.

Platt, a 6-foot, 2-inch, 240-pound inside linebacker and All American, will attend the University of Oregon in Eugene, while Patterson, a 6-foot, 3-inch, 240-pound inside linebacker and edge rusher, will attend the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA). The linebacker duo signed their NLI’s in front of family, friends, coaches, teachers and community members inside YHS’s gymnasium.

The Oregon Ducks commit, who pledged to the university on Sept. 4,  said the opportunity to sign with his Tornados teammate Patterson meant a lot to him.

“Isaiah and I began to get really close after he transferred after our sophomore year. We both have a similar goal in wanting to go to the NFL and to be the best we can be,” Platt said. “I feel like we really grew our connection through working together and wanting to become better together.”

Aside from enjoying the relationship he has with Patterson, Platt said he was thrilled to suit up and take the field each week with his teammate.


December 27, 2023

Nisqually Land Trust purchases the last parcel at Powell Creek –
Owns continuous block of 555 acres along river!

Credit: Nisqually Land Trust

Nisqually Land Trust purchases the last parcel at Powell Creek

With this latest acquisition, the Nisqually Land Trust now owns a continuous block of 555 acres along the Nisqually River, encompassing Powell Creek and its associated wetlands.

Excerpt from The Jolt News:

The Nisqually Land Trust announced the successful completion of a three-decade-long conservation effort with the recent acquisition of a crucial piece of land along Powell Creek.

This marks the final step in a journey that began over 30 years ago, according to the organization, which explained in its press release that with the its initial purchase was also near the mouth of Powell Creek along the Nisqually River.

The most recent addition involves the protection of 32 acres in the floodplain of the Nisqually River, solidifying the safeguarding of a 40-acre off-channel wetland.

This wetland serves as a critical rearing habitat for juvenile salmon, playing a vital role in supporting the region’s delicate ecosystem.

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For more information about helping to protect the river, streams, lands and wildlife of Nisqually River areas, visit their website.


December 26, 2023

Watch the Cold Moon and 3 planets tonight,
The last full moon of 2023!

The moon rises over Mount Rainier seen from Longbranch on the eastern shore of the Key Peninsula Thursday [Dec. 21]. Credit: David Montesino Staff photographer, Tacoma News Tribune.
article283403238.html#storylink=cpy

A Cold Moon and 3 bright planets? Here’s how to watch this lunar Christmas event in WA

Excerpt from The Olympian:

The Cold Moon will rise high in the Washington sky the day after Christmas, illuminating the city in its chilly glow for over 16 hours.

No, the moon isn’t especially chilly this time of the year, nor is it making it any colder down on Earth. But it is the last full moon of 2023 and has a higher trajectory than most other full moons, meaning it’ll stay in the sky longer than usual.

As an added bonus, this year’s Cold Moon will be accompanied by three planets visible to the naked eye, and the moon itself will sit in one of the sky’s brightest constellations.

Here’s what you need to know about Cold Moons, what makes them unique, and the exact time this year’s Cold Moon will appear in Washington.

When can I see the Cold Moon?

Although this year’s Cold Moon will reach peak illumination at 4:33 p.m. Pacific on Tuesday, according to the Farmers’ Almanac, you don’t have to wait until then to see the natural phenomenon. Like any other full moon, the Cold Moon is visible from around sunset until sunrise.

The moon should start to peek over the horizon just before sunset, according to the Farmers’ Almanac. The moon will rise for Puget Sound at 3:48 p.m. Tuesday and set at 8:28 a.m. Wednesday, while Eastern Washington, such as the Tri-Cities, will see the moon rise at 3:41 p.m. Tuesday and set at 7:54 a.m. Wednesday.

Read more from Live Science.


December 25, 2023

Merry Christmas to you and yours –
From the Yelm Community Blog!

Credit: christmasgreetingscard2023.pages.dev

Click here for The Christmas Heart, Yelm Community Choir 2023.

The Yelm Community Blog has published an annual Christmas message since 2006.

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The following are messages in the Christmas Spirit:

– “Christmas Gift Suggestions”
By Oren Arnold
To your enemy, forgiveness.
To an opponent, tolerance.
To a friend, your heart.
To a customer, service.
To all, charity.
To every child, a good example.
To yourself, respect.

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– World’s Largest Virtual #Hallelujah Chorus – Click here

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– The Polar Express – “I Believe” scene
This excerpt reminds us that the true spirit of Christmas lies in each of our hearts.
Watch here

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“Christmas in the Northwest – Brenda Kutz White”
“Post production opening clip taken from The Christmas in the Northwest Christmas special that aired on KOMO TV [Channel 4] in Seattle back in December of 1987 featuring Brenda Kutz White’s song “Christmas in the Northwest.”

All proceeds from the Christmas in the Northwest project go to Children’s Hospital in Seattle, Washington.”
Copyright © 1987 Fisher Broadcasting, Inc.
Click here for the video.

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– 10,000 singing Beethoven’s – Ode an die Freude (Ode to Joy)
Worth hearing and seeing, from 2012.
Click here

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– Michael W. Smith – Christmastime
Click here for this moving rendition of a holiday favorite.

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– “Do You Hear What I Hear? (Home Free) (Christmas A Cappella)” 2015
“Originally written during the Cuban missile crisis [Oct. 1962], a parallel can be drawn to any time when the world needs a reminder to love not hate.”
Click here for the video.

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– “Interesting Facts About Christmas”
“No matter how many Christmases you’ve celebrated, you may not know how five of the most common Christmas traditions came about. Let’s begin with a few interesting facts about Christmas from History.com:
* Christmas was declared a U.S. federal holiday on June 26, 1870
* Every year, 30 to 35 million real Christmas trees are sold in the U.S., most of them cultivated by one of the nation’s 21,000 Christmas tree growers
* Poinsettias are named after Joel R. Poinsett, an American minister to Mexico, who brought the plant to America from Mexico in 1828
* The Salvation Army has been collecting Christmas donations on the streets across the U.S. since the 1890s
* “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” was written in 1939 by copywriter Robert L. May as a marketing piece to attract customers to the Montgomery Ward department store
* Construction workers initiated the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree tradition in New York City in 1931
* The first eggnog made in the U.S. was consumed at the Jamestown settlement in 1607


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