10 years ago this week — 2009

KNAPPA – Things look pretty good in Knappa right now.

And the winning formula is the T-word — “teamwork.”

The Logger boys basketball team did its own version of “winning one for the Gipper” Saturday night, earning the state Class 2A basketball championship for coach Craig Cokley.

It was especially fitting because Cokley had announced that he is retiring from the coaching job after a stellar career.

A settlement has removed the last obstacle preventing a controversial condominium project on the Columbia River waterfront in Astoria from going ahead.

Seldom has a residential development sparked as much public opposition as the condominium Jon Englund and his partners proposed for property between 15th and 16th streets on the Astoria riverfront. It was 2006 when Englund first floated the idea of a condo on the former site of his family’s marine supply business, which is now located at the Port of Astoria.

The Oregon Department of Transportation is sending an extra $895,000 in highway project funds to Clatsop County and its municipalities as part of the federal economic stimulus package.

In addition to the normal state distribution of Surface Transportation Program funds, Clatsop County will receive $541,530, the city of Astoria, $215,779, and city of Seaside, $137,966.

The funds must be spent within a year on ODOT-approved projects.

Even from a cornfield in Illinois, someone can pan across the waves washing up at the Cove in Seaside.

From an internet cafe in Africa, a computer user will have a front-row seat while Fourth of July fireworks light up the ocean.

And, deep in the heart of Texas, a curious onlooker will be able to cheer on the runners in the Hood to Coast Relay as they spring down the Promenade to the finish line on the beach.

Watching the waves is already possible with a webcam perched on a balcony at the Lanai at the Cove, a vacation condominium complex on the south side of town. Set up by the Seaside Chamber of Commerce on the chamber’s website a month ago, the webcam enables viewers to see almost 3 miles away to the Turnaround.

In another two weeks, the chamber will install a second webcam at the Seaside Aquarium, which will offer a view that will reach to the mouth of the Necanicum on the north and Tillamook Head on the south.

50 years ago — 1969

Retired logger Henry Mooers of Skamokawa came in with a map. The map showed how much distance would be cut off travel to and from the beach if the present circuitous route over K-M mountain could be eliminated. This can be done, and must be done sooner than later, says Mooers, by simply extending the highway straight down the shore of the Columbia from Skamokawa, past Brookfield, Pillar Rock and Altoona, and either across Grays Bay on a low-level bridge, or around it, to connect with the present highway in the vicinity of Pt. Ellice.

It looks as if this would shave about 20 miles in distance. In terms of driving time, that would be around 30 minutes considering the nature of the road, up and over the mountain, being replaced.

Anyone who wonders why the road wasn’t located along the river in the first place – why, after following water all way from Longview, it took off inland at Skamokawa – needs to understand a little lower Columbia history. There was a legislator named Meserve who had a large general store at the head of navigation on Grays River. He insisted that the new road, finished in 1930, go through his town rather than Brookfield, Pillar Rock and Altoona. And he prevailed.

The manager of the Port of Astoria pleaded with the port commissioners Tuesday not to give up on the bill in the Legislature that proposes merger of the ports of Astoria, St. Helens and Portland.

“What you lose is so small, in comparison with what you gain, that it’s foolish to question the Mosser bill,” Manager C.E. Hodges told commissioners skeptical of some provisions in Senate Bill 492, drawn by Port of Portland attorney John Mosser.

75 years ago — 1944

A committee to work out a plan of financing the proposed teenage recreation center was appointed at Thursday night’s community council meeting by Chairman Don Mitshell in hopes that a survey of financial support might help in selection of a site for the recreation rooms.

No union of opinion was reached regarding location of the youth hall. In addition to the two sites previously favored, the YMCA and basement of the old Montgomery Ward building, now owned and offered free of rental by the American Legion, several others requiring rent were suggested.

A medium-sized plane from the Astoria airport facility of the U.S. Naval Air Station, returning with other planes from a routine flight, was forced into the sea 8 miles off Willapa Bay at 7:55 p.m. Sunday, and two men aboard were still missing today despite an all-night search.

Bob Duke is the author of the weekly Water Under the Bridge column in The Daily Astorian. Contact him at beachduke@gmail.com

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