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Quad City Herald
Brewster, Washington
January 29, 1998     Quad City Herald
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January 29, 1998

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QUAD CITY Serving the towns of Brewster, Bridgeport, Mansfield, Pateros and lower Methow Valley I I I I I III IIII H L P January 21 33 29 .21,2" mow January 22 33 21 trace January 23 40 .30 .70, 4" =tow January 24 40 39 .01 January 25 38 33 .03 January 26 43 29 0 January 27 40 30 0 Weekly weather raped through oourtesy Security Section, Chief Joseph Dam i iii I C00Of (left to right) Julia McKown, Frank Almqulat, Kevin McKown end Wayne Marsh fire up the engine on the Orange Blossom Special. Cheryl Schweizer photo Methow bluegrass group entertains at Senior Center by Cheryl Schweizer, staff writer Every So often Wayne Marsh, Frank Almquist and Kevin and Julia McKown get together to make a little music. "The Methow Mountain Boys is what we-- used to be," -Julie McKown. This isa traditional way to make music and have fun, gathering in a living room or back yard with family and friends and playing whatever songs happen to appeal to everybody. They have played together a long time; they have been friends and neighbors a long lime. The McKowns,Almquist and Marsh are part of the neighborhood along the dirt roads that branch off from the Methow Valley highway. The lower Methow River valley is an unusual place, 20 minutes from modern times yet still an old-fashioned neighborhood m many ways. One of the quartet's neighbors thought their music would be received really well in the place where he works. Bob Jackson told his friends at the Senior Center in Brewster about his neighbors; the center's operators suggested they be invited down for an afternoon jam session. Almquist, Marsh and the McKowns played at the senior center Thursday afternoon, January 22. It was one of many such sessions over the years, dating back to the days when Kevin McKown was learning to play the banjo and Marsh accompanied him, in a fashion, on the guitar. "We enjoy it. That's what we do it for," Marsh said. "We don't have any professional aspirations or anything. We just do it for fun." They have been playing together for 20 years or more, "off and on, with about a 10 year break," Marsh said. (Kevin McKown was living in Rend, Nevada, during those years.)The two men started playing together as novices, Marsh said. Kevin McKown "had picked up the banjo and decided he was going to learn to play the thing. And I knew a few chords on guitar." He calls himself a "living room picker." McKown and Marsh played some music together and liked what they heard, Marsh said, "and then we bumped into Frank, and we liked it even better." Frank Almquist plays the violin--well, the fiddle, really. He has been playing about 25 years and is "self-taught, I haven't had a lesson or anything." The three men played a little music in their homes and occasionally met at the Methow Care for an evening of music. In those days they even had a name; Marsh said "the Methow Mountain Boys is what we---" "---used to be," said Julia McKown. Julia said she is a bluegrass music fan; she became interested in playing the mandolin and talked a friend into teaching her. She met and married Kevin McKown when they were both living in Rend. The music the mountain boys plus' one played at the senior center was classic bluegrass, songs straight out of the Appalachian valleys. "Old time songs people are familiar with,"Almquist said. Their repertoire also includes modem bluegrass. Their neighborhood in the lower Methow valley is the kind of place where people play jokes on each other. In fact they had a joke prepared for Johnson; a t-shirt they gave him after lunch. "This is what old looks like," it said. They also had a number of the senior center's ladies all lined up to dance with him. The quartet, their families and thier friends get together when they can, "not often enough." Kevin McKown said. In the winter they might have a potluck at home. In the summer they might gather for a picnic; "this is something that is traditional from the past," Marsh said. "We enjoy it. That's what we do f for," - Wayne Marsh Chamber selects Brewster Citizen and Business of the Year Marge Hagy has been chosen as Citizen of the Year and Children's House and its owner Mary Johnson have been chosen as Business of the Year by the Brewster Chamber of Commerce. Hagy and Johnson will be honored by the Chamber at the annual banquet, scheduled for Tuesday, February 17 at 6:30 p.m. Jerry Tretwoid will be master of ceremonies: entertainment will bepmvidedbyPaul Madden and the Dreamers (Audrey and Amber Thomason and Lisa Milton). Tickets are $15 and are available atWebster Furniture, Bear Cove Video, the Quad City Herald, or by contacting the Brewster Chamber office or Elaine Bailey at the lnterWest Bank branch in Brewster. Pateros studying sewer plant options, Pateros city officials, engineers hired by the city and Department of Ecology representatives met Monday, January .26 to discuss options for updating the city's wastewater treatment plant--and how to pay for it. Pateros's sewer plant is old; i! may be nearing its capacity. City officials have been studying their options for about three years, and DOE deadlines for making a decision are approaching. In business at the regular council meeting Tuesday, January 20, council members made committee assignments. People on each committee acts as a liaiscm between the department and the council, Gag Howe and Carol Mooney were appointed to the finance committee; Mooney and NancyZimmerman were named to the growth management committee. Zimmermaq and Kenneth McDannald were named to the pofice, f'tm and health committee, and Mooney and Bob Fluegge were appointed to the water and sewer committee. Flnegge and Howe were named to the solid waste committee and Fluegge and McDannald to the streets and alleys committee. The date for the next regularcouncil meeting has been changed to Tnesday, February 17 to avoid a conflict with the President's Day holiday. Quad City area school levies on Tuesday ballot Bridgeport School District patrons will be in Pateros will be levied an estimated $2.05 with the state apportionment for teachers. So and replaced, he said, and district officials @ Mansfield, asked to approve or reject a two year request per $1,000 of assessed property value. Brewsterdistrictofficialsusesomeofthelevy wanttoaddsomenewtoysaswcil.Inaddition, for $95,000 each year. That amount remains In all four districts, if they are approved the money to pay for extra teachers. A similar the exterior of the grade school wing is in need Bridgeport, Pateros from a levy approved in 1996. levies will replace, rather than be added to, situation exists in Bridgeport, where some of of some repairs, hesaid, District superintendent Bob. Allen- said the existing M&Olevies. Becausetheyarerevenue the levy money is used to pay for the district's Money for the highly capable program in voters head to polls - levy rate is estimated to be about $1.38 for measures, the levy requests must receive at music program. Under the state formulas, Bridgeport and extra technology equipment each $1,000 of assessed property value, least 60 percent approval to pass. Bridgeportonly qualifies forone music teacher, and supplies in Mansfield and Brewster also Brew ster voters Bw,, district patrons also are voting on In all four districts, some of the M&O levy but the district has hired two. am included in the levies. a two year request, $485,000 in the fwst year moneyisusedtopayforextracunicularactivities, Mansfield superintendent Bill Thornton Brewster district officials decided to try a head to post office and$530,090inthesecondyear.Thelevyrate but the money affects many programs beyond said in an earlier interview that district by.mailelection this year, Kellysaid, becanse is projected to be about $2.73 per $1,000 of athletics and band. officials, patrons and board members must mailing a ballot to each voter might promote Voters in the Bridgeport, Brewster, Mansfield, assessed property value. The amount of basic school support given decide the fate of the old Mansfield school a higher turnout. He said he was influenced by and Pateros school dislricts are being asked to Maasfield patrons are voting on a two year to each district by the state is determined by a this year. The building isabout 70 years an experience in the 1997 election; be talked approve or reject maintenance and operations request as well, for $59,000 each year. That is complicated series otformulas. But the entire old; options for it range from selling it to to a number of people attending a basketball levies next Tuesday, February 3. unchanged from the M&O levy approved in allocation system isbased on the number of refurbishing it to demolishing it. Whatever game that had forgotten or put off voting. He Polling places will be open in Bridgeport, 1996. Mansfield property owners would he kids in school, the decision, it will have to be paid for by said he wondered how many other district MansfieldandPateros.Brewsterdistrictpatrons leviedaprojected$1.75 per$1,000ofassessed Those formulas determine, among other the district, Thornton said. patrons might have done the same thing. are voting by mail and can mail their ballots property value, things, how many teachers the state will pay Pateros district officials have been urged to He said that as of Monday, January 26, 322 before or on Feluary 3. Brewster voters also Pateros School District patrons are being for in each district. Brewster superintendent refurbish the grade school playground, said ballots had been rammed to the auditor's will have a chance to drop off ballots in the asked to approve or reject a one year levy for Jim Kelly said in an earlier interview that he superintendent Bob Nolan, The district's office in Okanogan.The district needed about council chambers at the Brewster City Hall on $160,000, the same amount as a one year levy did not think district patrons would accept the insurance carrier has recommended that some the day of the election, approved in February 1997. Property owners larger classes necessary ff the district stayed of the existing equipment should be removed con't on page 2 / /