▶️ Warm Springs art camp connects kids with local traditional artists

Native art practices have been passed down for generations, and this week, some kids in Warm Springs got to reap the rewards. 

The Tananawit art nonprofit group’s first annual youth art fair brought color and concentration to the lobby at the Museum at Warm Springs for spring break. 

Six local traditional artists came to share their expertise with kids in beading, weaving, making dreamcatchers, making pouches, and more. 

“Many call it crafts. But to me, it’s art that we’re passing down, it’s traditional ways that we’re passing down,” said Maria Godines, who first started making leather and buckskin pouches at age 6.

Student Nizhoni Yallup spent time at the beading table on Thursday, painstakingly threading a needle through tiny beads. 

“I made my first dream catchers and my first earrings,” she said. “You can make your own design, and you could pick your own colors.”

RELATED: ▶️ Warm Springs celebrates new skate park opening

RELATED: ▶️ Museum at Warm Springs opening ‘Eye for the Rez’ photo exhibit

Roy Tulee’s father originally taught him to make dreamcatchers when he was a child, and he brought his knowledge to teach at camp this week. 

“With us being a cultural community and tribal, we get to teach our kids what we learned, what we use as our skills,” he said. “With our culture, everybody wears earrings, everybody wears necklaces, everybody has a dream catcher.”

The artists’ efforts all start with Tananawit, which supports nearly 40 local artists through a store next to Indian Head Casino. 

“Our goal is to support our artists any way we can. That includes the young artists who need to learn the traditional culture, the traditional crafts,” said Executive Director Debra Stacona. “It’s really important for the children to realize where they come from, and what art was available and still available, that they could be a part of.” 

Spanning the generations to preserve the arts is an effort they wish to continue. 

“It’s important to share any type of knowledge that you have with our younger generations, and even with people that are older so that they can learn,” Godines said. “It’s never too late to learn.”

Tananawit will host another youth art fair at the end of the summer, and they hope to start adult classes around that time as well. 

You can visit their website here and their Facebook page here to stay updated on the latest events. 

Lawyer: Trump indicted; 1st ex-president charged with crime

NEW YORK (AP) — Donald Trump has been indicted by a Manhattan grand jury, prosecutors and defense lawyers said Thursday, making him the first former U.S. president to face a criminal charge and jolting his bid to retake the White House.

The charges remained under seal late Thursday, but the investigation centered on payments made during the 2016 presidential campaign to silence claims of an extramarital sexual encounter. Prosecutors said they were working to coordinate Trump’s surrender, which could happen early next week. They did not say whether they intended to seek prison time in the event of a conviction, a development that wouldn’t prevent Trump from assuming the presidency.

The indictment, an extraordinary development after years of investigations into Trump’s business, political and personal dealings, injects a local district attorney’s office into the heart of a national presidential race and ushers in criminal proceedings in a city that the ex-president for decades called home. Arriving at a time of deep political divisions, the charges are likely to reinforce rather than reshape dueling perspectives of those who see accountability as long overdue and those who, like Trump, feel the Republican is being targeted for political purposes by a Democratic prosecutor.

Trump, who has denied any wrongdoing and has repeatedly assailed the investigation, called the indictment “political persecution” and predicted it would damage Democrats in 2024. In a statement confirming the charges, defense lawyers Susan Necheles and Joseph Tacopina said Trump “did not commit any crime. We will vigorously fight this political prosecution in court.”

A spokesman for the Manhattan district attorney’s office confirmed the indictment and said prosecutors had reached out to Trump’s defense team to coordinate a surrender. Trump was asked to surrender Friday but his lawyers said the Secret Service needed additional time as they made security preparations, two people familiar with the matter told The Associated Press. The people, who couldn’t publicly discuss security details, said Trump is expected to surrender early next week.

District Attorney Alvin Bragg left his office Thursday evening without commenting.

The case centers on well-chronicled allegations from a period in 2016 when Trump’s celebrity past collided with his political ambitions. Prosecutors for months scrutinized money paid to porn actor Stormy Daniels and former Playboy model Karen McDougal, whom he feared would go public with claims that they had extramarital sexual encounters with him.

The timing of the indictment appeared to come as a surprise to Trump campaign officials following news reports that criminal charges were likely weeks away. The former president was at Mar-a-Lago, his Florida estate, on Thursday and filmed an interview with a conservative commentator earlier in the day.

For a man whose presidency was defined by one obliterated norm after another, the indictment sets up yet another never-before-seen spectacle — a former president having his fingerprints and mug shot taken, and then facing arraignment. For security reasons, his booking is expected to be carefully choreographed to avoid crowds inside or outside the courthouse.

The prosecution also means that Trump will have to simultaneously fight for his freedom and political future, while also fending off potentially more perilous legal threats, including investigations into attempts by him and his allies to undo the 2020 presidential election as well as into the hoarding of hundreds of classified documents at Mar-a-Lago.

In fact, New York was until recently seen as an unlikely contender to be the first place to prosecute Trump, who continues to face long-running investigations in Atlanta and Washington that could also result in charges. Unlike those inquiries, the Manhattan case includes allegations against Trump that occurred before he became president, had already been examined but not charged by federal prosecutors and is unrelated to much-publicized efforts to overturn the election.

The indictment comes as Trump seeks to reassert control of the Republican Party and stave off a slew of one-time allies who may threaten his bid for the presidential nomination. An expected leading rival in the race, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, called the indictment “un-American” in a statement Thursday night that pointedly did not mention Trump’s name.

In bringing the charges, Bragg, the Manhattan district attorney, is embracing an unusual case that was investigated by two previous sets of prosecutors, both of which declined to take the politically explosive step of seeking Trump’s indictment. The case may also turn in part on the testimony of a key witness, Trump’s former lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen, who pleaded guilty to charges arising from the hush money payments, including making false statements.

The probe’s fate seemed uncertain until word got out in early March that Bragg had invited Trump to testify before a grand jury, a signal that prosecutors were close to bringing charges.

Trump’s attorneys declined the invitation, but a lawyer closely allied with the former president briefly testified in an effort to undercut Cohen’s credibility.

Trump himself raised anticipation that he would be indicted soon, issuing a statement earlier this month in which he predicted an imminent arrest and called for protests. He did not repeat that call in a fresh statement Thursday, but the New York Police Department told its 36,000 officers to be fully mobilized and ready to respond to any potential protests or unrest.

Late in the 2016 presidential campaign, Cohen paid Daniels $130,000 to keep her silent about what she says was a sexual encounter with Trump a decade earlier after they met at a celebrity golf tournament.

Cohen was then reimbursed by Trump’s company, the Trump Organization, which also rewarded the lawyer with bonuses and extra payments logged internally as legal expenses. Over several months, Cohen said, the company paid him $420,000.

Earlier in 2016, Cohen also arranged for the publisher of the supermarket tabloid the National Enquirer to pay Playboy model Karen McDougal $150,000 to squelch her story of a Trump affair in a journalistically dubious practice known as “catch-and-kill.”

The payments to the women were intended to buy secrecy, but they backfired almost immediately as details of the arrangements leaked to the news media.

Federal prosecutors in New York ultimately charged Cohen in 2018 with violating federal campaign finance laws, arguing that the payments amounted to impermissible help to Trump’s presidential campaign. Cohen pleaded guilty to those charges and unrelated tax evasion counts and served time in federal prison.

Trump — obliquely referred to in charging documents as “Individual 1” — was implicated in court filings as having knowledge of the arrangements, but U.S. prosecutors at the time balked at bringing charges against him. The Justice Department has a longtime policy against prosecuting a sitting president in federal court.

Bragg’s predecessor as district attorney, Cyrus Vance Jr., then took up the investigation in 2019. While that probe initially focused on the hush money payments, Vance’s prosecutors moved on to other matters, including an examination of Trump’s business dealings and tax strategies.

Vance ultimately charged the Trump Organization and its chief financial officer with tax fraud related to fringe benefits paid to some of the company’s top executives.

The hush money matter became known around the D.A.’s office as the “zombie case,” with prosecutors revisiting it periodically but never opting to bring charges.

Bragg saw it differently. After the Trump Organization was convicted on the tax fraud charges in December, he brought fresh eyes to the well-worn case, hiring longtime white-collar prosecutor Matthew Colangelo to oversee the probe and convening a new grand jury.

Cohen became a key witness, meeting with prosecutors nearly two-dozen times, turning over emails, recordings and other evidence and testifying before the grand jury.

Trump has long decried the Manhattan investigation as “the greatest witch hunt in history.” He has also lashed out at Bragg, calling the prosecutor, who is Black, racist against white people.

The criminal charges in New York are the latest salvo in a profound schism between Trump and his hometown — a reckoning for a one-time favorite son who grew rich and famous building skyscrapers, hobnobbing with celebrities and gracing the pages of the city’s gossip press.

Trump, who famously riffed in 2016 that he “could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody” and “wouldn’t lose voters,” now faces a threat to his liberty in a borough where more than 75% of voters — many of them potential jurors — went against him in the last election.

9 killed in Army Black Hawk helicopter crash in Kentucky

FORT CAMPBELL, Ky. (AP) — Army officials say nine people were killed in a crash involving two Army Black Hawk medical evacuation helicopters conducting a nighttime training exercise in Kentucky.

Nondice Thurman, a spokesperson for Fort Campbell, said Thursday morning that the deaths happened the previous night in southwestern Kentucky during a routine training mission.

A statement from Fort Campbell says the two HH-60 Black Hawk helicopters, part of the 101st Airborne Division, crashed around 10 P.M. Wednesday in Trigg County, Kentucky.

The 101st Airborne confirmed the crash about 30 mile northwest of Fort Campbell. The crash is under investigation.

Lava River Cave timed reservations available starting next week

Timed reservations tickets for Lava River Cave open for reservations starting Wednesday, April 5, for the 2023 season, according to the Deschutes National Forest

Next week, 50% of the Lava River Cave timed reservation tickets will be available on Recreation.gov on a rolling 30-day booking window. The remaining 50% of timed reservation tickets will be available on a 24-hour booking window beginning May 4.

Timed reservations will be for a two-hour entry block each day Lava River Cave is open.

Every day there will be 14 daily entry blocks with a new entry block opening every 30 minutes. If there are available tickets on any day, people at the site without a timed reservation will be able to make a reservation through Recreation.gov that day.

DNF tells us timed reservation covers everyone in a vehicle, there is no per person charge. In addition, if visitors bike or walk to the site, they do not need a timed reservation.

All reservations are made through Recreation.gov and can be made at 7 A.M. each day.

Timed reservation tickets are free; however, Recreation.gov charges a $2 service fee per transaction for processing the reservation. Reservations also can be made by calling Recreation.gov at 1-877-444-6777.

The Recreation.gov call center is open daily from 7 A.M. to 9 P.M. PST. People can either print the timed reservation ticket or download it to their mobile device to show to the attendant at the site.

The change to a timed reservation system was made last summer in response to increasing visits to Lava River Cave, over 70,000 per year, that DNF cannot accommodate with the parking at the cave. In recent years, visitors have been parking along the roadways outside of the cave while waiting for a parking space to open causing serious and increasing safety concerns for the public and the staff at the site.

The goals of the timed reservation system are to increase public safety, reduce public frustration from waiting in line for unknown periods of time before getting into the site and to spread out visits to the site to make the experience more enjoyable to visitors, according to DNF.

For more information, please contact the Bend-Fort Rock Ranger District at 541-383-5300.

▶️ Lots of snow in them there hills, but still not enough to break the drought

Snow surveyors were out in the woods Wednesday measuring the snowpack which has increased after recent storms, but is there enough snow to break the drought?

They found above average amounts of snow but not as much water in the snow as might be expected.

We had to break trails through a couple feet of fresh powder to reach the snow survey course near Dutchman Flat.

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Once there, scientists from the Natural Resource Conservation Service plunged a tube into the snow 10 times.

They measure the depth of the snow, which averaged about 130 inches.

They also determine the density of the snow, which tells them how much water is in the snow.

“Think about the snowy mountains as being a frozen reservoir of water. It’s good to know how much is out here because more than 50% of our water comes from this snowmelt,” said Anna Burton, a civil engineer with the Natural Resources Conservation Service’s Redmond office.

The surveyors determined the depth of snow near Dutchman Flat to be 123% above average for this time of year.

But, they also found the water content of that snow to be 97% of average which means the water deficit that’s been developing the past three years in Central Oregon is getting worse.

“We are still seeing extremely low streamflows, extremely low reservoir levels and, in parts, still some significantly low soil moisture profiles. Those all have a pretty great impact and strain on water resources in the region,” said Matt Warbritton, Lead Hydrologist for NRCS’s Oregon Snow Survey.

Another problem is people traveling through the snow survey courses –whether on skis, snowshoes or motorized vehicles–compacting the snow and interfering with accurate measurements.

A motorized snow bike passed through this snow survey course last month while scientists were taking samples.

“It’s definitely appealing when you are snow shoeing or skiing through the trees and you see this nice wide open path to want to go down it,” said Andy Neary, a Natural Resource Conservation Service ecologist. “We just want folks to make sure that, if they see that sign that says snow course or snow survey, to try to avoid those areas.” 

Some of these snow survey courses have been sampled the same way for 70 years.

Such long-term data sets go a long way to helping interpret changes in climate, snowpack and availability of water.

▶️ Deschutes National Forest raising camping fees

Despite cold weather conditions, camping season is right around the corner. To rent a campsite in the Deschutes National Forest this year, you will spend a bit more money than normal.

“For the 2023 camping season, we have authorized a three dollar increase for single campsites and about a $17 increase for group sites,” said Public affairs specialist for the Deschutes National Forest, Jaimie Olle. “These fee increases are to help our concessionaire visitor recreation keep up with increasing costs in terms of labor and materials.”

Campsite prices are different depending on the area, according to DNF.

A single site costs around $15-30, and a group site can be up to a few hundred bucks.

“Prices do vary depending on the campground and depending on the amenities that you’ll find at that campground, whether it has, you know, very primitive offerings or whether there are some additional services like water and things like that,” Olle said. “So depending on where you’re going, you’ll want to visit recreation.gov and check out the campground prices for each individual campground.”

Located on the eastern slopes of the Cascades, the Deschutes National Forest offers year-round recreation opportunities and is home to more than 1.6 million acres. The forest spans a variety of landscapes.

“The Deschutes National Forest has around 90 developed campgrounds across the forest, and that spans all the way from Crescent into Bend Up to Sisters and also constitutes the Newberry National Volcanic Monument,” Olle said.

With snow still on the ground, Olle tells us, you’ll have to wait a little longer to go camping.

“Our campgrounds haven’t currently opened for the season,” said Olle. “Obviously, with this winter weather, maybe there will be some delays come spring to get those open. Just depends on access to things like that. But if you stay tuned to our forest website and recreation dot gov, we’ll have our opening season dates listed there.”

Overnight permit reservations for Central Cascades Wilderness open next week

▶️ Warm Springs celebrates new skate park opening

It was all smiles…with a few bumps and bruises…down at the brand new Warm Springs skate park on Wednesday. 

The opening ceremony was the result of years of efforts from the community, and a few supporting organizations. 

“It’s incredible to think that a year and a half ago, this was a concrete pad with a bunch of wooden ramps,” said Benjamin Bashein, the Executive Director of the Skatepark Project. 

A crowd of 500 came out to Warm Springs to see the transformation from the former wooden park to the state-of-the-art, concrete facility with new jumps and trick areas. 

“It feels good knowing there’s a lot of people putting their blood, sweat, and tears into this,” said skater Francisco Pedraza. 

“It was all wooden and it was really hard to skate,” skater Daquan Cassaway said. “It feels really good to have a new park now, way different from the old one.” 

The park is the more than $200,000 result of fundraising efforts by The Skatepark Project run by famous skater Tony Hawk, and Tactics Skate Shop. 

RELATED: Tony Hawk to donate photo proceeds to Tyre Nichols fund

RELATED: ▶️ New Warm Springs skate park expected to open spring break

The Skatepark Project has helped fund more than 600 skate parks across all 50 states, but the funding is normally only partial. This time, they helped fund the whole thing. 

Hawk’s brother and co-chair of The Skatepark Project, Steve Hawk, rarely makes an appearance at the park openings, but he made a special visit for Wednesday’s celebration. 

“Our big hopes of this is that it actually isn’t just a fun thing for kids to do, but that it will end up sort of uniting the community in a fashion. Because as you’ve seen here today, there’s a certain pride in that. They all came together to get it built. So now there’s a sense of local ownership over it,” Hawk said. 

He believes the skate park will become one of the ‘most used’ recreational facilities in the community. 

“On top of that, my brother and everyone involved in the skate park really strongly believes that skate parks in general, skateboarding in general, is just a great activity for a young person to get into because it’s active, it’s healthy and that regard,” Hawk said. “But it also requires a certain mindset, too, of perseverance and grit and a willingness to hurt yourself a little bit and get back up and try again. Clearly my brother is a living example of that.” 

Coletta Macy has pushed for the skatepark from the start, and the result has been greater than she dreamed. 

“There’s a lot of people that are from off the reservation that have come today, you know, they heard about it in Portland, they heard about it in Bend,” Macy said.  “You know, all of central Oregon heard about it. So it’s really cool that they came down here to to christen the spot.”

It’s a spot the community hopes will keep skaters rocking and rolling for years to come. 

The skate park will gain additional space with more trick sections in the coming year, and the remains of the old skate park will be used to make a new one up in Simnasho. 

Other organizations who supported the project include Ginew, Dehen, The Ford Family Foundation, The Marie Lamfrom Charitable Foundation, Roundhouse Foundation, PTM Foundation, Visit Central Oregon, Jefferson County Commissioners and the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs.

▶️ Redmond PD finds 15 cats abandoned in totes with no food or water

Redmond Police Department officers found ten adult cats and five kittens abandoned in totes after responding to a call at 8 A.M. on Monday morning. 

The cats were at Paul Hathaway Park, 1021 NW Rockcrest Ct., near a canyon edge. They did not have access to food or water, and they smelled of urine and feces, Lt. Jesse Petersen with the Redmond Police Department said. 

There was a suitcase left nearby with cat food inside. 

RELATED: ▶️ Cat burglars: Video shows two thieves stealing a Prineville woman’s cat

Officers took the cats to Brightside Animal Shelter in Redmond for evaluations and vaccinations. 

“I’m shocked they were still in the crates when anyone arrived. Because most cats, if there’s an opened crate and it’s an outdoor area and they’re afraid, they are going to dart,” Assistant manager of Brightside Animal Shelter, Haley Halsey said.

Brightside told police all of the cats were in good condition. None of them were microchipped, preventing authorities from identifying the owner.
“Because they were in good condition, they were most likely not left over night. It was so cold that night, that if they had been left over night, there’s a potential that one of the kittens could have been hurt significantly,” said Lt. Petersen.
There will be some time before Brightside puts the cats up for adoption.
“We’re kind of waiting to see how this case turns out,” Halsey said. “We’re not sure at this point how long we have to hold these cats before we can spay and neuter them, and then adopt them out. The kittens are still too small to be adopted out so we’re going to send them out to foster for about two weeks.”

Redmond PD is still looking for the person responsible for the abandonment. If you have any information, you can call the non-emergency number at 541-693-6911. Reference RPD case #23-8507.   

In a press release Tuesday, Redmond PD said it is against the law to abandon a domestic animal or equine at a location without providing minimum care. It is also against the law, ORS 167.325 Animal Neglect, to fail to provide minimum care for an animal in a person’s custody/control. Penalties range from fines to jail time.

Governor Kotek signs emergency homelessness response package into law

Governor Tina Kotek signed House Bills 5019 and 2001 into law during her first ceremonial bill signing as Governor on Wednesday, March 29, after both bills passed with bipartisan support last week. The Governor was joined by lawmakers and advocates for the bill signing.

The legislation will help address Oregon’s housing and homelessness crisis, and includes the urgent funding Governor Kotek proposed in response to the homelessness state of emergency that she declared on her first full day in office. The funding is dedicated to homelessness prevention programs, more shelter capacity, rehousing services and more.

RELATED: ▶️ How new $200M homeless, housing fund will affect Central Oregon

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“On my first full day in office, I honored my commitment to all Oregonians by declaring a homelessness state of emergency,” Governor Kotek said. “I said at the time that the declaration needed to be followed by a comprehensive housing and homelessness package this legislative session. These two bills are the down payment on this session’s efforts.”
“Faced with a statewide housing and homelessness crisis, legislators worked across the aisle and with the Governor to put Oregon on a path toward a future where housing is available and affordable for everyone,” Senate President Rob Wagner (D-Lake Oswego) said.
“Today demonstrates that we can deliver on the biggest, most important issues facing Oregonians,” House Speaker Dan Rayfield (D-Corvallis) said. “Both chambers, both parties, came together with the Governor to tackle our big challenges head on. And we did it in an unprecedented timeframe.”

Redmond Airport experiencing ‘very limited’ parking availability

The Redmond Municipal Airport (RDM) told us it has recently been experiencing “very limited” parking availability and periods of zero availability.

The airport encourages passengers to plan for alternatives to parking at the airport before headed to the terminal.   

The airport’s website is being updated every 30 minutes with parking availability, located on the message scroll at the top of the page. 

If limited spaces show available, RDM is asking travelers to consider using alternate travel ride-share options.

Passengers are advised to arrive two hours prior to flight departure to check luggage and clear security, especially for flights departing between the hours of 5:00 a.m. and 7:00 a.m.

The airport terminal is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Boarding lounge amenities include a children’s play area, Nursing Room, a free book exchange, a coffee/gift shop, a family-friendly restaurant, and a full-service bar (located post-security) that opens daily at 10:00 a.m.