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Cashmere grad has rapid rise in Montana government

Photo contributed by Blair Fjeseth
Blair Fjeseth, director of communications for the Secretary of State of Montana. A Cashmere grad, she credits her education at Carroll College and Cashmere High School as big reasons for her rapid professional career at 26.
Blair Fjeseth, nee Parker, is on her third month as Director of Communications for the Secretary of State of Montana.

Fjeseth (Fee-YES-seth), a Cashmere High School and Carroll College graduate, was appointed to the position last September. She will serve until the end of Secretary of State Linda McCulloch's term, in December of 2016.

A married mother of 1-year-old Sven, she said that knowing when her time will be up has its pluses and minuses.

"On one hand it's great, because I can't see myself doing the same job for the rest of my life," she said. "That's just not who I am, and in my job, I can do the best job I can do in the years remaining of her [McCulloch] term because it's my one shot."

Conversely, it's scary.

"I have a family, and I want to help provide for them, so it's like, 'Oh, my gosh, what am I going to do after this, in 2017?'" She added that she feels confident she will be able to parlay her experience and her connections into a new job.

An Alaska native who lived in Maui until the eighth grade, when she moved to Cashmere with her family, she said sometimes it amazes her how quickly things have happened for her. But only after someone mentions it.

Thursday, December 11, 2014 More...

Velocity Swimming program seeks more upper valley swimmers
The Wenatchee based year round Velocity Swimming program is hoping to attract more swimmers from the upper valley, Leavenworth and Cashmere.

A Wenatchee Valley staple for 30 years, Velocity Swimming is seeking to attract families from outside the Wenatchee and East Wenatchee area.

"We are the only year round competitive swim program in the valley. We're trying to extend the growth because we have a passion for the sport of swimming and what it can benefit. We're trying to extend that beyond the Wenatchee area," Jeffrey Sutton, Velocity Swimming board member and parent. "The benefit is a lot bigger than that. We have a very fun, recreational summer swim league. Some swimmers have moved into this and found this is a lot of fun and has a lot of benefit."

Thursday, December 11, 2014 More...
Chelan PUD Commissioners pass 2015 budget
Board sets priorities including paying down debt and investing in dams and electric grid

Thursday, December 11, 2014 More...
Fire families: Every fire tells a story
They say blood is thicker than water. If she could, Danielle Piton would tweak the adage a little.

She would probably say 'thicker, unless the water is coming out of a firehose.'

A volunteer firefighter in Peshastin, Danielle is the daughter and niece of firefighters as well as the wife of a volunteer firefighter. She and Nick Piton have been married two years, and they spent their second anniversary battling a blaze in Wenatchee. Her idea.

"It was, 'Happy anniversary. Help me carry this hose,'" she quipped.

And if a baby ever enters the picture, and a siren blares within earshot, she says she will grab gear and go take care of business. If anyone is staying home with the baby, it's going to be Nick, she adds, or a grandparent.

Thursday, December 11, 2014 More...
Riverside Center contract awarded to downtown shop owner
Teri Weedman, owner of Weeds Café, was expected to be awarded a three-year deal as the new administrator of the Riverside Center.

The official announcement of Weedman's bid beating two other bids was scheduled for the Nov. 8 city council meeting, which occurred past this publication's press time.

Weedman, a Cashmere High School graduate and the owner of Weeds Café for almost two and a half years. She owned a restaurant and a catering company in Mukilteo years prior to owning the café.

With a new administrator, the Riverside Center will change quite a bit, and not just because Weedman plans to paint the place.

"Basically, I'm going to rebrand it," she said of the center. "I'm going to get a new logo, I'm going to redo the website, I'm going to spruce up the building, the website, get the shrubs cleaned, I'm going to have those planters be really nice and full and beautiful."

Weedman will likely install a camera security system. Eventually, she said, she would like to turn the restrooms into changing rooms for brides and grooms.

Thursday, December 11, 2014 More...
To coach or not to coach? No question.
Together since high school, Corrie and Brent Darnell know each other darned well.

So when Brent -a basketball lifer if there ever was one-- told his wife he would retire from coaching basketball at their alma mater Eastmont to spend more time with her and their two girls, Corrie wondered if the hiatus would last a year.

The hiatus lasted a year, but it was a long year. Something happened to her man when he hung up the whistle, Corrie said.

"He just wasn't the same," Corrie said. "He got very involved with my daughter's group, and he was very busy, getting involved with AAU basketball, but there was something missing." The upbeat Brent was even a little depressed, she added.

So when Brent found the opportunity to coach in Cashmere, he asked Corrie first if she was up for it. And she was.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014 More...
Scouts troop always tree-prepared
With warm smiles and chilly faces, Troop 1 of the Boy Scouts returned to Riverside Park for its Christmas tree sale.

The sale is an annual fundraiser that stretches back decades and has become as much part of the Christmas landscape in Cashmere as Christmas lights on Ardeta Park or on the bridges into town.

More than 200 trees made their way into Cashmere from Mossyrock, south of Olympia.

By the time the last weekend before Christmas rolls around, they will all be in their own living room somewhere.

On the first two days of the sale alone, Nov. 29-30, the troop sold more than 40 trees.

"We will run out before Christmas," said Scout master Jim Kill, adding that the troop runs out of trees just about every year. If they don't, they will leave the handful that's left and sell them by donation.

The trees are mostly farm trees. Up until 10 or 12 years ago, the scouts sold wild trees, and they still do, but only a few now.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014 More...
FFA team shines at apple-judging competition
A group of students from Cashmere's FFA chapter will compete this week at state after finishing among the best in a district apple-judging competition.

Among individuals, Dani Kenoyer finished first, Tarrah Te Velde finished fifth, Bryan McNair finished sixth, Cassidy Boyd finished seventh, Emma Haegen finished eighth and Sam Copeland finished ninth. Kenoyer's top placing earned her a $500 scholarship as well.

In team scores, Cashmere's teams finished first, third and sixth.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014 More...
A grand champion goes back to square one
Out with the moo, in with the baa.

The steer category's FFA Grand Champion at the Chelan County Fair this year, Jaspers has already set her sights on next year's fair season. However, she will not bring a cow or a bull to the Chelan County Expo Center next year.

Instead, she has switched back to breeding goats and sheep, the latter of which she raised for years before she took a steer to the fair last year.

For 2015, she will raise a goat -for Waterville's North Central Washington Fair-and purchase a sheep in the spring for the Chelan County Fair.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014 More...
Navy moms keep the faith
Boot camp is boot camp, but siblings are siblings.

With older brother Tyler Carrillo a recent graduate of Navy Boot Camp, Victoria Carrillo said she missed him, but added that nostalgia is not the only thing she has felt.

"Sometimes, I miss him a lot, other times, I'm really happy I'm the only child," she said, an aw-shucks smile growing with every word.

The ladies surrounding Victoria smile. Although they understand why a preteen girl might like being the unchallenged queen of the castle, Barbara Carrillo, Katie Michael and Gretchen Modrell know saying good-bye to a brother is not the same as saying it to a son.

Barbara is Tyler's -and Victoria's-mom. Katie is Ethan Visser's mom, and Gretchen is Jonathan Modrell's mom. All three boys joined the Navy at about the same time, and now all three men have both graduated from boot camp within weeks of each other.

Ethan helped convince Tyler and Jonathan to join. Earlier, Elizabeth Martin -then Visser-- had convinced her younger brother Ethan to join, two years after she did.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014 More...
Children at railroad tracks have residents cross
At least two adults have spotted children trying to cross the railroad tracks that bisect Division Street when the crossing arms are down.

Cashmere Schools Superintendent Glenn Johnson said that he had received an email about the children disregarding the gates, and called on Cashmere parents to warn their children about the high danger of trying to beat a train.

"My request of the principals was to put out either through newsletters or our Facebook page, [a message] to parents that says 'hey, talk to your kids. This is not something they should be doing.'"

Johnson called the situation "unacceptable, and quite frankly, I'm sure it's illegal."

Wednesday, November 26, 2014 More...

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