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Laura Gjovaag

Stories by Laura

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New Grandview band teacher hopes to inspire achievement in music

GRANDVIEW – Adam Harris hopes to jazz up Grandview High School when he starts as band teacher at the school this fall.

My favorite Martian

There’s a Martian working for Yakima County, and what he does is really useful.

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Daley out as S’side AD

Bill Daley, who has been a fixture at Sunnyside High School for more than two decades, will be resigning from his position as athletic director at the end of the 2015-16 school year.

Sunnyside School Board makes short work of agenda

The Sunnyside School Board quickly worked its way through a short agenda Thursday night, approving several routine plans and schedules, and having a short discussion on the district’s achievement plans.

Routine business matters handled by Sunnyside City Council

The Sunnyside City Council zipped through its business meeting this past Monday night, passing three resolutions and approving a plan for public participation.

Sunnyside has its wild places

I grew up across the street from a horse pasture.

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City council favorable to idea of outdoor cafe seating

The Sunnyside City Council held two first readings of new ordinances Monday night, including one that would allow downtown businesses to offer outside seating.

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Bank of America closing Lower Valley financial centers

Bank of America is closing its Sunnyside and Grandview branches in the Lower Valley, although both cities will continue to have automatic teller machines available for banking needs.

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Trees on school property deemed dangerous, being removed

A number of large trees on the grounds of the Sunnyside School District’s administration building at the corner of South Sixth Street and East Lincoln Avenue are being removed because they are dying or diseased and pose a direct threat to the community.

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Parks and rec report delivered to Sunnyside Daybreak Rotarians

Sunnyside’s Daybreak Rotary Club is considering what it can do to improve Sunnyside’s parks after a short presentation by Megan Razey this past Wednesday morning about the state of the city’s parks and recreation programs.

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Groundwater advisory group continues to have issues

The Lower Yakima Valley Groundwater Advisory Committee last night managed to continue its work toward reducing nitrate concentration in groundwater despite a contentious start, a competing meeting and a procedural argument that revealed deep disagreements in how the group should be operating.

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Farmers not the only ones affected by drought

Short water supply impacts local cemetery

It’s difficult to keep a park-like setting green when there is not enough water to go around.

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Science on the go

Science doesn’t require a lab coat, a crazy hairdo or the constant wearing of goggles.

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World is more complicated than we usually think it is

The best laid plans often go wrong, because the world isn’t as predictable as we’d like to think.

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Dental hygienist loves Eastern Washington...except for the tumbleweeds

Moving to Sunnyside was a big change for Brenda Crawford, a dental hygienist with lots of experience.

Mabton High’s AP statistics students recommend regulating salaries of superintendents in all state schools

MABTON – Students in a Mabton High School AP statistics class used data analysis to determine that school superintendent salaries in the state should be regulated like teacher salaries to help fix the state’s budget crisis.

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‘Heavy hitter’ loves his job

Mariano Morales loves what he does.

Granny Who... I’ll miss her

My husband’s grandmother, Helen Gjovaag, passed away this past Sunday afternoon.

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Annexation proceeds with one minor bump

The proposed annexation by the city of Sunnyside of several properties along Emerald and Wells roads is moving forward without a property owned by Roseland LLC.

Pot shop shuttered by city of Sunnyside

The city of Sunnyside closed down Dave’s Place yesterday morning

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Sunnyside native raising money for independent film

Sunnyside native Octavio Mora has a dream, and he’s currently trying to raise enough money to make it happen.

Sunnyside School District officials fix mistakes discovered during audit

An audit of the Sunnyside School District’s finances for the 2013-14 school year turned up some minor mistakes, along with an issue with the district’s bidding process for fruits and produce.

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Sunnyside Christian graduating 21 seniors tomorrow

The 21 graduates from Sunnyside Christian High School this year will be represented by four co-valedictorians.

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Anti-bullying efforts focus of grassroots arts organization

An organization whose goal is to empower Yakima Valley communities through arts and entertainment is focusing on an anti-bullying campaign for 2015.

Let’s start small with local recycling effort

Recycling didn’t happen in Seattle overnight.

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New Sunnyside park utilizing historic Yellowstone Trail in the works

City officials, once reluctant, now seem poised to preserve a section of the historic Yellowstone Trail.

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Recycling eyesore caused by irresponsible citizens

The recycling bins at the Sunnyside Community Center consistently are overfilled, with items spilling out into the parking lot.

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Handbook for female farmers good for anyone who wants to live on a farm

At first glance, a handbook on farming may seem useless for an area with so many experienced farmers, but a flip through “Woman-Powered Farm” reveals a manual that any farmer might find useful.

Reporters have opinions, too

When I entered Western Washington University many years ago to earn my college degree, I started out in the journalism department.

S’side City Council gives OK for piping, airport runway, sidewalk, city hall upgrades

The Sunnyside City Council approved a number of grant applications and task orders at last night’s regular meeting, including holding a public hearing for a community development block grant to replace water mains along 11th Street and Kearney Avenue.

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Inaugural ‘Fallen Heroes 5K Run’ given approval by Sunnyside officials

Representatives of American Legion Post 73 and the Sunnyside Events Committee were on hand at last night’s Sunnyside City Council meeting to promote the Fallen Heroes 5K Run, a new event planned for Sunnyside’s Fourth of July celebration.

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New office manager happy to be part of port operations

She’s only been working at the Port of Sunnyside for about a month, but Nikki Jech says she already loves her new job as the port’s office manager.

Roza irrigation shut-off extended to June 1

Water in the Roza Irrigation District, which was shut off May 11, will continue to be shut off until at least Monday, June 1.

Weather plays role at District meet for Sunnyside girls 4x200 relay squad

If the Sunnyside girls 4x200 relay team doesn’t qualify for the 4A State track and field meet tomorrow, the weather might legitimately get some of the blame.

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Chamber of commerce’s executive director moves on

In a bid to keep the groups working to improve Sunnyside on the same page

Mabton students argue proposals in Olympia

MABTON – A hands-on civics project took 34 Mabton High School students to Olympia this past weekend for a competition at the State Capitol.

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Stonies files lawsuit against city of Sunnyside

The business owner who wants to sell recreational marijuana in the city of Sunnyside has filed suit against the city, claiming it improperly issued building permits for his business and did not conduct a necessary environmental review.

Only three contested races in Lower Valley this fall

Four public office seats draw no candidates

Only three Lower Valley races in this fall’s election will be contested, although the fate of four seats is still up in the air due to a lack of candidates.

Seven more file for public office in Lower Valley

Seven more candidates, including four incumbents, joined the race for seats on Lower Valley councils and boards yesterday.

Parade horseman displaying upside-down American flag apologetic, ‘very embarrassed’

A horseman who displayed the United States flag upside-down during Sunnyside’s Cinco de Mayo Parade two Sundays ago is “very embarrassed” and will be writing a letter of apology to the community, according to Sunnyside Chamber of Commerce President Victor Frausto.

Plenty of public office seats still to be filled

With only two days to go to file for this fall’s elections, 15 of the 25 positions that are up for grabs in the Lower Valley have yet to draw a candidate.

Grandview mayor sole candidate from Lower Valley to file yesterday

Mayor Norm Childress of Grandview was the only Lower Valley candidate to file for public office yesterday, the second day of filing week for the November elections this fall.

Incumbents first to file for this fall’s General Election

YAKIMA – Six Lower Yakima Valley candidates threw their hats into the ring Monday during the first day of filing for office for the November General Election.

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City sewer system responsibility of new treatment plant supervisor

The new supervisor of Sunnyside’s wastewater treatment plant, Raul Sanchez, was introduced to the city council at Monday night’s meeting.

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Emergency notification system presently in the works

An emergency notification system is one of the big projects in the works at the Yakima Valley Office of Emergency Management, according to its new director, Scott Miller.

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SHS junior confident in ring

TOPPENISH – Mickayla Wert showed no signs of nervousness as she prepared to enter the ring at the Central Washington Junior Livestock Show this past Monday.

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4-Her moves from pork to mutton

TOPPENISH – This is Jessica Scheenstra’s first year showing lambs at the Central Washington Junior Livestock Show.

Poetry, stories draw readers into the life of a migrant field worker

The opening pages of Ramón Ledesma’s “Migrant Earth” talk about the hope inherent in growing up as a migrant worker.

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Award-winning apps being developed by HMS students

Harrison Middle School students are jumping into the world of technology with three award-winning apps designed to solve real world problems.

Visit Sunnyside Library at new location

I visited the Sunnyside Library this past weekend in its new location downtown... and I was impressed.

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