Local news
Three Days of Razor Clam Digging Starts Friday on Copalis Beach
Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) shellfish managers on Wednesday confirmed razor clam digging reopens at Copalis Beach on Friday, Feb. 3, followed by additional opportunities on Feb. …
Local Republican Lawmakers Say Return of In-Person Session Draws Hope for Bipartisanship
Late last month, Southwest Washington legislators spoke of a desire for bipartisan collaboration in ways the previous two sessions fell short. The 105-day 2023 legislative session began on Jan. …
Forest Service to Discuss PNW Wildfire Risks in Virtual Forum
The Pacific Northwest region of the U.S. Forest Service will host a virtual community forum on Feb. 16 from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m.  Regional Forester, Glenn Casamassa, will discuss the service's …
Woman From Yelm Dies in Fatal Traffic Collision in Roy
A 30-year-old woman from Yelm was pronounced dead at the scene of a fatal traffic collision on state Route 507 in Roy on Wednesday, Feb. 1.  According to a Washington State Patrol memo, the …
Yelm Lions Club in Need of Members, Leadership Volunteers
The Yelm Lions Club, which has been a community staple for nearly 70 years, needs new members and leadership volunteers if it wants to continue operating as an organization.  The club is on …
Citizens Raise Concerns on Algiers Road Closure at Yelm City Council Meeting
Well over a month after the closure of Algiers Road, several members of the public attended the Yelm City Council meeting on Tuesday, Jan. 24, to voice concerns that were created with the shutdown of …
Steele Barrel BBQ Finds Success With Food Truck
After opening their food truck for weekend take-out in November, Steele Barrel Barbecue has become a well-known staple for residents with a hankering for a smoky or saucy treat.  Selling …
Thurston County Stopped Free Mulch Program on Jan. 31
 The free mulch program at the Waste and Recovery Center (WARC) in Lacey is set to end on Jan. 31 due to growing concerns about customer safety, which includes potential hazards during loading …
City of Yelm’s Lodging Tax Funding Program Is Now Open
The City of Yelm’s Lodging Tax Advisory Committee has opened the 2023 Lodging Tax Funding Program.  The LTAC Committee is comprised of citizens who are involved in the tourism industry …
Rescued Moose Calves Now Available for Public Viewing at Northwest Trek
Northwest Trek Wildlife Park announced three orphaned moose calves made their public debut at Northwest Trek on Friday, Jan. 27.  The three moose calves — named Atlas, Luna and Castillo …
City of Yelm Opens Community Beautification Grant Program
The City of Yelm will offer grants to neighborhoods, community groups and local businesses through its Community Beautification Grant program.  The program seeks to collaborate with …
State & Regional News
State Representatives Sponsor Bill Again Attempting to Reform Governor’s Emergency Powers
State Rep. Chris Corry, R-Yakima, introduced a new bill last week that would reform the governor’s emergency powers, according to a statement released on Tuesday, Jan. 17.  House Bill …
Bill Proposes Sealing Name Changes for Abuse Victims
People who change their names to hide from their abusers should be afforded more privacy. That, at least, is the conclusion Maia Xiao came to after a transgender friend committed suicide after …
Sen. McCune Introduces Trio of Bills to Create a Parents’ Bill of Rights in Senate
State Sen. Jim McCune introduced legislation on Wednesday, Jan. 25, which would recognize the “fundamental rights of parents to direct the upbringing and education of their …
Gov. Inslee Told to Expect Lawsuit Over 'Out of Balance' Wildlife Commission
Washingtonians for Wildlife Conservation announced last week that it intends to sue Gov. Jay Inslee for an “out of balance” wildlife commission that fails to represent multiple …
Breathalyzer Bill Would Lower Threshold for DUIs in Washington From .08 to .05
A new bill in the Washington State Senate could lower the Blood Alcohol Content threshold for DUIs from 0.08 to 0.05 statewide. The bill, SB 5002, was put forward by state Sen. John Lovick, D-Mill …
Bill Proposes Relaxing Restrictions on Low-Dose Cannabis Drinks
Consumers will be able to purchase more low-THC liquid-infused products in a single purchase if a bill in the Legislature wins approval.  “HB 1249 is necessary to ensure that the …
Washington Legislature Looks to Set Up State-Run Apprenticeship Programs for Students
OLYMPIA — Washington students may soon have another option in high school — a state-run apprenticeship program in a number of different fields. As the Legislature looks to tackle …
State Launches Online Application Portal for Prospective Foster Parents, Caregivers
The Washington Department of Children, Youth and Families (DCYF) launched a new online application portal Monday for those interested in becoming foster parents or caregivers. The ultimate goal …
House Honors Jamie Walsh, Late Wife of Rep. Jim Walsh, With Unanimous Resolution
On Thursday, Jan. 12, members of the Washington state House of Representative unanimously passed a resolution honoring Jamie Walsh, the recently deceased wife of state Rep. Jim Walsh, …
Life

Nisqually Valley Happenings: Community Calendar for Feb. 2

Thursday, Feb. 2 Food Bank The Yelm Community Services food bank, at 624 Crystal Springs St. NW in Yelm, will hold a food giveaway from 1 to 3:45 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 2. Clients cannot enter …

Take a Trip Through Our Area’s Rich History

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 • Yelm …

Finding Reason: Sometimes God Is Working Even When it Doesn't Look Like it

By the time it was my turn to speak, he, a hardened, totally disengaged criminal, had moved next to another guy in the prison chapel in the back row and that guy decided to turn completely sideways …

Take a Trip Through Our Area’s Rich History

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 • Yelm …
Business
Twenty-five years ago, someone made less than flattering comments about Jackie Wright’s painted portraits of her grandmother. As a result, she decided to focus on ceramics, which eventually …
As a new business, 507 Auto Detailing has garnered a good reputation, securing the top spot in the Best of Nisqually contest in its first year.  Co-owner Jeff Stockbridge got into car …
Rainier’s Sprouffske Trees Inc. has provided Christmas trees to the Nisqually Valley area and beyond for generations. Their trees have filled more than half a million homes, family member …
Main Street Cookie Co., a former staple in downtown Rainier, relocated to Tumwater earlier this month and changed its name to LUV Cookies.  Store owner Joycelyn Zambuto said management …
At the age of 10, Kahne Loftus began sending care packages to soldiers who were stationed overseas for the holidays. In Loftus’ first year, the Rainier resident sent 40 packages with items …
Sports

Josh Meldrum Hits Game-Winner in Rainier’s Win Over Ocosta

In a dogfight in the first round of the 2B District 4, the Rainier boys basketball team needed every bit of every minute to pull out a win in Montesano Saturday night against Ocosta.  The …

Mountaineers Crush Chinooks in District Opener

ROCHESTER — Finally healthy at just the right time, the Rainier girls basketball team took care of business in the first round of the 2B District 4 tournament Saturday afternoon at Rochester, …

Rainier Grits Out Win Over Toledo

The Rainier boys basketball team might have gotten itself into a mud wrestling match early against Toledo on Thursday, but the Mountaineers stuck with it until the going got better, coming back …

Beavers Drop Regular Season Finale to Eagles

Scoring just 12 points in the second half, the Tenino boys basketball team ended its regular season run with a 62-39 loss to Elma on the road Tuesday night.  The Beavers lost their third …

Yelm Boys and Girls Go Winless in Four Combined Matchups

Both the Yelm boys and girls basketball programs entered their games on Wednesday, Jan. 25, with just four games remaining in the regular season.  The two teams have had a different outlook …

Wrestlers Honored at Senior Night as Yelm Concludes Regular Season Action

The regular season concluded for both the Yelm boys and girls wrestling teams as the seniors were celebrated on Thursday, Jan. 26, with a “retro night” theme. Both teams took on …

Mountaineers Grind Out Slugfest Over Riverhawks

The Rainier girls basketball team did it with defense Monday, wrapping up its regular season with a 38-22 win at Toledo. The Mountaineers put in 19 points in the first quarter, then settled in for …

Tigers Dominate Rainier, Clinch Bye at Districts

NAPAVINE — Stifling the Rainier attack through the first half, the 2B No. 5 Napavine boys basketball team continued its hot streak, defeating the Mountaineers at home Friday night, …

Rainier Crushes Ony Shorthanded

Playing without more than a few key contributors, the Rainier girls basketball team defeated Onalaska on the road Thursday night in Central 2B League play, 60-10.  Haleigh Hanson and …

Pirates Bounce Back to Hammer Rainier

Stifling Rainier all game, the Adna boys basketball team reassessed and refocused last weekend after a tough end to the week, and defeated the Mountaineers, 60-39 Wednesday night in a get-right …

Opinion

Brian Mittge Commentary: Micromanaging Lawmakers Set Back Students and Teachers

The Legislature is back in session and parents (and all who care about their community’s schools) should pay attention to how some powerful state lawmakers are pushing to roll back local …

Sen. John Braun Commentary: To Restore Public Trust, Start Reestablishing Public Safety

I don’t know anyone who would choose to live next to a big, noisy international airport, or have sexually violent predators for neighbors.  Through no fault of their own, people in the …

Letter to the Editor: Bill Seeks to Remove ‘Qualified Immunity’ for Washington’s Law Enforcement Officers

A bill coming up this session is HB 1025. It is a bill that will open up each and every law enforcement officer and private security guard to nuisance litigation, and will also transfer liability to …

Being Frank: Dead Zones Are a Symptom of a Warming Planet

As first stewards on the front lines of climate change, treaty tribes have been sounding the alarm for more than a decade about low oxygen levels in the ocean and the Salish Sea. My mentor, former …

Sen. Braun Commentary: Refusal to Even Acknowledge K-12 Learning Loss Is Disservice to Students

This year’s legislative session is already more than two weeks along, and leading Democrats in our state have yet to publicly express any interest in solving the learning loss in our …
Obituaries
In Loving Memory of Harold Harding: 1957-2023 
Harold Arthur Harding, age 66, passed away Jan. 11, 2023, in Yelm, Washington, after a long battle with lung cancer and COPD. He was born on Nov. 29, 1957, in Youngstown, Ohio. His parents were Jim …
In Loving Memory of Nathan Farrell: 1983-2022
Beloved husband, son, father, brother, uncle and friend, Nathan Edward Farrell, passed into the presence of the Lord on Dec. 9, 2022, in Pace, Florida at the age of 39.  Nathan was born Nov. …
In Loving Memory of Mary Ann Graham: 1945-2022
Mary Ann Graham passed away Dec. 9, 2022, in Olympia, Washington. She was born Jan. 12, 1945, to Gertrude Wille and Duncan Chisholm in Jordan, Montana. Mary Ann was a 26-year resident of Yelm, …
In Loving Memory of Wayne Carlton Paiva: 1945-2022
Wayne Carlton Paiva, of Roy, Washington, died on Nov. 28, 2022, at home alongside his wife Kathy, family and friends, ending a long battle with cancer. He was 77 years old.  Wayne was born to …
In Loving Memory of Anneke Jensen: 1943-2022  
Longtime Boston Harbor resident, Anneke Wilhelmina Jensen, passed away peacefully at her home surrounded with love and family on Nov. 12, 2022, after a brief but valiant fight with …