Notes from Newcastle — Summertime blues

July 2, 2015

While most of the region’s residents patiently endure the constant Northwest rain with the knowledge that at the end of the long, grey tunnel sits one prize of a summer, some strange individuals silently voice their displeasure with the sunny months.

“It’s too hot,” they say. “I miss my rain,” they lament. “Where are the clouds?” they ask.

They justify their aversion to summer weather by slowly repeating PEMCO’s “We’re a lot like you, a little different” mantra. “There must be others like me,” they insist, though they’re never quite sure.

They most closely identify with the insurance company’s “First Snowflake Freakout Lady,” only replace snowflake with “90-degree day” and you’ve got yourself a winner. Read more

Lions and tigers and bears — oh deer

June 4, 2015

Three weeks ago, a cougar was spotted in Kennydale. Not long after that, a bear was seen strolling up our very own street. I long ago accepted the wild kingdom that is our backyard and greenbelt: Raccoons who roll up our grass like old carpeting while looking for grubs, rabbits whose warren holes are just large enough to be a tad unnerving when I walk by them, snakes on the front stoop, bobcats on the fence, skinks in the garage, frogs in the family room, chipmunks in our rockeries, bear scat on the path. Live and let live, I say.

But this year … oh, deer.

Pat Detmer

Pat Detmer

If you live in Newcastle, I know you’ve had the deer experience. You learn to adapt. I only grow Hosta and Huechera in pots on the deck and fully expect fresh tulips to be beheaded before sunset. I finally gave up and pulled out a plant that had served as their salad bar for so many years that I could no longer ID it. California Lilac? Yum! Lemon Cypress Tree? Our compliments to the chef! I always ask the helpful garden folks at Newcastle Fruit & Produce if plants are deer-resistant before I buy them, but lately they just laugh. I understand why. If our local deer are hungry enough, there’s nothing they won’t eat. Except, unfortunately, Bishop’s Weed. Read more

Newcastle Fruit and Produce almost open for business

March 31, 2015

NEW — 4:05 p.m. March 31, 2015

By Christina Corrales-Toy The Newcastle Fruit and Produce stand is set to open April 4.

By Christina Corrales-Toy
The Newcastle Fruit and Produce stand is set to open April 4.

It isn’t really spring in Newcastle until a familiar red-and-white tent stands at the corner of Newcastle Way and Coal Creek Parkway. Read more

A Very Newcastle Christmas Celebration

December 9, 2014

System Pavers donates patio, stairs to Newcastle community

December 4, 2014

Contributed Workers from Rios Brick Pavers make way for the donation of a new paved patio at Newcastle’s Habitat for Humanity community.

Contributed
Workers from Rios Brick Pavers make way for the donation of a new paved patio at Newcastle’s Habitat for Humanity community.

Newcastle’s Habitat for Humanity community now has a new paved patio, complete with safer steps, and it was all free. Read more

Shop smart, shop local in Newcastle

December 4, 2014

The weekend after Thanksgiving is the busiest shopping weekend of the year, and many small businesses rely on the holiday shopping period to ensure a successful year on the books, according to the federal Small Business Administration.

That’s why the day is known as Black Friday, because heavy sales often move a business from out of the red financially into the black.

SBA Administrator Maria Contreras-Sweet sent out a press release at the end of November reminding Americans to not only shop small on Small Business Saturday, but to purchase their Thanksgiving dinner items at local grocers, shop small at their local businesses and dine small at their neighborhood restaurants.

American Express founded Small Business Saturday in 2010 to help small businesses get more customers. Its slogan is “When you shop small, it can lead to big things.” Read more

Newcastle Days celebrates 20 years

August 29, 2014

The city of Newcastle officially turned 20 this year.

While the area is home to a century’s worth of coal-mining history, it was only in 1994 that the city became the Newcastle it is today. There were 7,000 residents in the city at the time of incorporation, a number that has grown to more than 10,400.

And as with any birthday milestone, it’s time for a celebration, and it comes in the form of the city’s annual Newcastle Days festival Sept. 6.

“Really, when you think about it, 20 years isn’t old for even a tree, but there’s been a huge amount of change here in Newcastle in the last 20 years,” said Community Activities Commission Chairwoman Diane Lewis, one of the festival’s organizers. Read more

Newcastle teen hailed as ‘future of flight’

August 29, 2014

Jordan Fletcher

Jordan Fletcher

In the June 2014 issue of Alaska Airlines magazine, the company’s vice president of human resources wrote that she has seen the future of flight, and it is indeed very bright.

Tammy Young was talking specifically about 14-year-old Jordan Fletcher, a smart, deep-thinking Newcastle teenager with his eyes perpetually toward the skies.

Jordan already has his future aviation career planned out, and he hasn’t even entered high school. It begins with a specialized education at the prestigious Raisbeck Aviation High School, followed by a stint in the Air Force Academy. Read more

When Newcastle Fruit & Produce opens its doors, spring is in the air

April 3, 2014

By Christina Corrales-Toy Dave Franklin, Newcastle Fruit & Produce owner, operates a forklift as he busily prepares for the grand opening of his popular seasonal stand.

By Christina Corrales-Toy
Dave Franklin, Newcastle Fruit & Produce owner, operates a forklift as he busily prepares for the grand opening of his popular seasonal stand.

Newcastle Fruit & Produce owner Dave Franklin didn’t have much time to talk March 22 as he navigated a forklift while earnestly preparing his popular stand for a target opening of April 5-6.

It will be Franklin’s 22nd year of operating the seasonal stand at the corner of Coal Creek Parkway and Newcastle Way, but that doesn’t make each grand opening any easier, he said.

“I’m excited, a little nervous, though,” he said. “It’s always like opening a brand new business every year.”

Read more