Local news
Nisqually Valley Happenings: Community Calendar for Sept. 23
Thursday, Sept. 23 Senior Lunches The Yelm Adult Community Center will hold its weekly lunches at 11:30 a.m. to noon Wednesdays through Fridays. Senior Services for the South Sound operates the …
Area Districts Work to Comply With State’s Vaccination Mandate
Yelm Community Schools and the Rainier School District have been working to track their employees to make sure their staff is in compliance with a statewide mandate that requires all school employees …
Yelm Community Schools Strikes Three-Year Deal With Union
Yelm Community Schools and the Yelm Education Association agreed upon a three-year collective bargaining agreement this fall, with a 97 percent ratification. Brian Wharton, superintendent of Yelm …
Yelm City Council Position Four Candidates Prepare for November General Election
Incumbent Holly Smith and her general election challenger Steffen Burney will face off on Tuesday, Nov. 2 for the Yelm City Council Position No. 4 seat. The candidates detailed their position on …
Remembering Lorraine Loomis, a Tribal Treaty Rights Champion
Lorraine Loomis, the chair of the Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission (NIFC) and the Swinomish fisheries manager, died Aug. 10 at the age of 81. Loomis became the fisheries manager for the …
Sirens: Wallet Stolen in Vehicle Prowl; Intoxicated Man Yells at Dollar Tree Customers; Man Harassed After Dropping Off Water at School; Walmart Employee Caught Shoplifting on the Job; Woman Conceals Merchandise in Purse; Wallet Stolen in Vehicle Prowl; I
Sirens - Yelm Police Department Wallet Stolen in Vehicle Prowl Yelm police officers responded to a vehicle prowl and theft call on Monday, Sept. 13. According to a police report, a man drove …
Thurston County Sees 11 New COVID Deaths, 675 New Cases In One Week
Thurston County Public Health and Social Services reported 11 new COVID-19 deaths in the county during the period of Sept. 13-19. The reported deaths included men and women in the age range of 60 …
Union Calls for Investigation into Sexual Harassment Claims Against Yelm City Administrator
The Washington State Council of County and City Employees (WSCCCE) recently drafted a letter to Yelm officials asking for a third-party consultant to investigate sexual harassment allegations levied …
Cantwell Secures $1 Million Grant for Thurston County Workforce Development
U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell, D-Washington, announced a $1 million federal grant for the Lacey MakerSpace in Thurston County from the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development …
Toxic Algae Health Advisory Issued for Lake Lawrence
Thurston County Public Health and Social Services reported a toxic algae bloom at Lake Lawrence on Friday, Sept. 17. Lake Lawrence’s lab results for microcystins showed a toxin level of …
St. Peter, Centralia Hospitals See Highest Ever Daily Death Toll from COVID-19
Providence’s two Southwest Washington hospitals reported their highest single-day death toll due to COVID-19 on Friday. Between Centralia and St. Peter hospitals, 10 individuals — all …
Yelm Man Accused of Breaking into Centralia Distribution Center, Threatening Employees 
A Yelm man has been charged for allegedly breaking into a Michael’s Distribution Center in Centralia on Wednesday, damaging employees’ vehicles with a blade and threatening two employees …
State & Regional News
Thousands of State Workers Submit Vaccination Exemptions; Tally Includes Hundreds of State Troopers
OLYMPIA — Thousands of state employees, including hundreds of state troopers and prison guards, are seeking exemptions from Gov. Jay Inslee's vaccination mandate. The deadline for full …
Lumber Prices Fall, But 'Chaos' in Supply, Labor Hits State’s Home Builders
Lumber prices have finally fallen off record levels, but other supply problems will prevent Spokane-area homebuyers from seeing the benefit of lower costs for some time, industry officials …
New Nonprofit Focuses on Reforming State Wildlife Management, Advocates Shift From 'Consumption' to 'Conservation'
A new nonprofit has entered the conservation fray, and is focusing on reforming how Washington state manages its wildlife and ecosystems. "Washington Wildlife First" will set its sights on …
Washington Residents With Felonies May Soon Automatically Have Voting Rights Restored
As of this election cycle, those convicted of a felony in Washington can have their voting rights restored upon completing community supervision with the Department of Corrections, but beginning in …
WDFW Announces 62 Days of Tentative Razor Clam Digs in 2021
Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) shellfish managers announced  62 tentative dates for razor clam digs beginning in mid-September and running through the end of the …
With Opt-Out Deadline Looming, Washington's Long-Term Care Benefit and Tax Draws Praise, Criticism
OLYMPIA — It's almost time for Washington residents to decide between a state long-term health care benefit or a private one. Beginning in 2022, Washington workers will see a payroll tax for …
Will Outdoor Events Carry on Despite the Rise in Hospitalizations?
For more than a year, the pandemic canceled or dramatically changed nearly all of the major events Eastern Washingtonians love. Hoopfest and county fairs didn't happen. Washington State University …
Washington's New Mask Mandate Takes Effect Today
Washington residents will be required to wear masks indoors, regardless of vaccination status, beginning Monday. A masking order issued by Washington Secretary of Health Umair Shah will be in …
2020 Was a Banner Year for Outdoor Recreation. State Managers Wonder, Will It Last? And Will It Pay?
Outdoor recreation accounted for 2% of Washington's total gross domestic product in 2020, according to a study released this month, while the outdoor recreation industry accounted for 2.8% of total …
Business
On a given day in Yelm City Park or Cochrane Memorial Park, one might see Yelm-area residents Coco Lopez, 22, and 15-year-old brother, Kevin, out strolling with one of their 300 baby trees. The …
Not unlike its host of hungry piglets, Rainier’s Vail View Farms is in its infancy. After Fred Delaney retired from the military in 2017 from a 26-year career in electronic warfare, Delaney …
Yelm-area resident Amy Malik started the business Small Town Veggies to promote local farming and address food insecurity in the region. The store features a wide variety of fresh, locally grown …
Nestled neatly among the streets of Tenino, the quaint little Braids and Blossoms Flower Farm adds a fragrant bloom to the small city. Owned by Ridgeline Middle School math teacher Tabatha Sand, …
Folks have another choice for massage therapy in Yelm with the opening of Salt and Sage Holistic Body Care, which moved to the city on June 1. Madison Pate, licensed massage therapist and owner of …
Sports

Tornados Overcome Rocky First Half For First League Victory

Despite 13 penalties in the first half, resulting in 130 lost yards, the Yelm High School football team beat Timberline 38-20 on Friday, Sept. 17, at home. Yelm Coach Jason Ronquillo said the …

1A Football: Beavers Dam Up Cougars in 78-28 Victory

Senior Takari Hickle ran for four touchdowns as Tenino’s run game was unstoppable in a 78-26 non-league victory over District 4 foe Seton Catholic on the road Friday. Dylan Spicer and …

Cross Country: Rainier's Selena Niemi Top Local Finisher at Ony Invite

Rainier senior Selena Niemi lost by four seconds to Stevenson’s Isabella Spencer to claim second place at a 2B league meet in Onalaska on Thursday. Niemi, who ran a 20:28.14, was the top …

1A Boys Golf: Beavers Keep Building on Early Season

One day after improving by 23 strokes from its first-ever match, Tenino did even better in their third-ever match in Thursday’s 178-222 loss to Montesano at Oaksridge Golf Course in …

1A Boys Golf: Beavers See Huge Improvement in Second Meet

Though Tenino didn’t come away with a win in its second-ever match, the Beavers saw tremendous improvement on Tuesday from their inaugural meet on Sept. 7. The Beavers were edged 219-224 by …

Rainier Swept by Morton-White Pass at Home Tuesday

RAINIER — Following a sweep at the hands of Stevenson on the road, Morton/White Pass ventured out on the road once again, but handed Rainier a sweep in a victory (25-22, 27-25, 25-23) Tuesday …

1A Volleyball: Beavers Improve in Sweeping Loss by Bobcats

TENINO — It wasn’t the result Tenino volleyball wanted but the Beavers’ performance against Class 2A Aberdeen on Tuesday was night and day compared to their loss the night before …
Life
Enjoy these snapshots of articles written in past issues of the Nisqually Valley News from 45, 35, 25 and 15 years ago, respectively. A Look Back at This Week, 45 Years Ago: - The Yelm Police …
It was more than 20 years ago when I insisted my grandfather let me take him out to his favorite restaurant. After much persuasion, he agreed to have me stop by and pick him up — and I lived …
Enjoy these snapshots of articles written in past issues of the Nisqually Valley News from 45, 35, 25 and 15 years ago, respectively. A Look Back at This Week, 45 Years Ago: - The manager at …
Opinion
Letters to the Editor: We’re Honored to Have the Water Tower Completed
There are so many people we would like to thank for their contribution to the Yelm water tower project. First, my employee and partner on this project Andrew Barben, having the faith in me and us to …
McDonald Commentary: Pandemic Poses Sticky Questions of Mandates, Jobs and Public Health
No doubt about it, we’re living through a confusing, uncertain and rancorous time — in large part because of the coronavirus pandemic and attempts to curtail its spread. Take, for …
Brunell Commentary: Ban Inslee’s Natural Gas Ban
Gov. Jay Inslee’s end run around the Legislature banning natural gas in new homes and commercial buildings is a bad idea. Even though the state Legislature adjourned …
Bill Moeller Commentary: Good News or Bad News? You Can Make the Call
A recent edition of the Sunday Seattle Times raised that question. It centered around the undeniable evidence that glaciers — at least in our part of the world — are shrinking. We can …
John McCroskey Commentary: Parents Need More Choices for Childrens’ Education
In a Sept. 4 commentary in The Chronicle, Liv Finne of the Washington Policy Center wrote “the systems and policies of public education have failed, despite the best efforts of teachers and …
Julie McDonald Commentary: Area Centenarian Still Uses Skills to Help Others
The last two weeks, I’ve shared stories about Shirley (French) Nelson, who celebrated her 100th birthday in July. What follows is the rest of her story. After her divorce, Shirley traveled …
Obituaries
In Loving Memory Of Harry Larson: 1930-2021
Harry Dwayne Larson was born on Jan. 12, 1930, in Northport, Nebraska, the youngest of eight children, to Oscar and Minnie Larson.  Harry was preceded in death by his parents and all of his …
In Loving Memory Of Glenn C. Badger Sr.: 1941-2021
Glenn C. Badger Sr. died peacefully Thursday, July 15, 2021 at home in Rainier, Washington. Glenn was born in Portsmouth, New Hampshire to David and Gladys Badger on Sept. 3, 1941.  He saw …
In Loving Memory of Loris Ketter: 1931-2021
Born Feb. 2, 1931, in Kingsville, Missouri, Loris J. Ketter was the fourth of eight children of Jesse H. and Anna (Swank) Browning.  Loris was preceded in death by her parents, husband and …
Death notices

Death Notices: March 27, 2021

• KAMI SUE SILVA, 51, Vancouver, died March 20 at the Ray Hickey Hospice House, Vancouver. Arrangements are under the care of Fir lawn Funeral Chapel. • EDWIN MAYNARD WALLACE, 73, …