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News Briefs

Heating season brings chimney fire dangers

Local firefighters on Monday responded twice to a home in Verboort to put out a stubborn chimney fire.

Dave Nemeyer, Forest Grove fire marshal, said the chimney was caked with creosote, a flammable residue left by burning unseasoned wood.

Nemeyer said free chimney sweeping equipment is available at the Forest Grove fire station.

'We just looked at the forecast and this weekend looks decent,' he said. 'Now would be a great time to come borrow the equipment and get on the roof when it's still dry.'

Nemeyer said local fire agencies respond to dozens of chimney fires each winter, some of which spread to the house. They can be easily prevented by keeping your chimney clean and burning dry seasoned wood, he said.

Be sure to measure your chimney first so you know what size and shape brushes you need.

For more safety tips, check out our Safe and Secure guide in this week's paper and Forest Grove's open house, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m, Saturday., Oct. 15, at 1919 Ash. St.

Centro Cultural snares Nike employee grant

Centro Cultural in Cornelius is the recipient of a $10,000 grant from The Nike Employee Grant Fund of The Oregon Community Foundation.

The grant will support Centro Cultural's Youth Empowered Success (YES) program, developing leadership skills for at-risk middle school students in the context of sports, classroom discussions and community service.

The mission of Centro Cultural is to promote social and economic development, meet basic human and community needs and increase cultural consciousness and understanding among diverse groups of the community.

Launched in spring 2010, the Nike Employee Grant Fund of The Oregon Community Foundation (OCF), is granting up to $600,000 per year for three years to local nonprofit organizations or schools that wish to join Nike in creating positive social and environmental change.

Adventures Without Limits hosts annual gala

Adventures Without Limits, a group that specializes in coordinating outdoor adventures for residents of the metro Portland area, is trading in its rugged outdoors image for fancier duds this Friday for its 12th annual auction, to be held at the Forest Hills Golf Course.

The group's gala event includes hors d'oeuvres, fine wine and beer, live music and mingling in addition to silent and live auctions featuring everything from outdoor gear to weekend getaways.

The event marks the 21st year for the group, which is based in Forest Grove.

The Adventures Without Limits auction starts at 6 p.m. Oct. 14 at the golf course, 36260 SW Tongue Lane, Cornelius. Tickets are $20. To learn more, or to purchase tickets, call 503-359-2568.

Curves joins fight against breast cancer

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and Curves continues to work to raise awareness in women about the life-saving importance of risk management, early detection and treatment.

Throughout the month, Curves of Banks women's fitness center is waiving the joining fee for new members who show proof of a mammogram within the past year or make a $25 donation to breast cancer research.

To learn more, call Curves at 503-324-9262.

Forest Grove publisher expands in Sunshine State

Forest Grove-based Ruralite Services is launching a new publication, Florida Currents, in partnership with five electric cooperatives in Florida.

Ruralite, a not-for-profit cooperative corporation formed more than 50 years ago, provides communication services for 70 consumer-owned electric utilities and associations in Alaska, Arizona, California, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, Nevada, Oregon and Washington.

More information is available at www.ruralite.org.

Get your spook on with haunted tours

It's October, which means it's time to pay a bit more attention to things that go bump in the night.

The Washington County Museum and the Sherwood Historical Society will join forces next Wednesday evening, Oct. 19, to showcase a few of county's locally haunted places.

The event begins at 7 p.m. with a brief tour of the Morback House in Sherwood and a tour of another 'haunted' site a few blocks away. Learn who lived - and perhaps died - decades ago in these local places some people say are now laced with supernatural overtones.

Admission is $3, but it's free for museum members. For more information call 503-645-5353.

If you're looking for spookiness closer to home, 'Myths and Ghosts of the Grove' is the theme of a pre-Halloween walking tour by Sojourn Forest Grove and Urban Decanter, scheduled for 3 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 22.

Join guide Mary Jo Morelli at the Urban Decanter, 2030 Main St., to explore stories of the mysterious in Forest Grove. The tour will end back at the wine shop at 4:30 p.m. for sharing of stories, wine and snacks. Tickets are $20 per person and can be reserved by calling 503-359-7678 or online at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Spaces are limited, so be sure to sign up early for a howling good time.