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Check your child's vaccinations before heading back to school

Check your child's vaccinations before heading back to school

Getting ready for back to school means getting school supplies and backpacks, but it's also the perfect time to make sure children are up-to-date on their shots. Getting all of the recommended shots is one of the most important things parents can do to protect their kids' health.

A new survey from the Washington State Department of Health shows vaccination rates are on the rise (71 percent in 2013 versus 65 percent the year before) but are still below the Healthy People 2020 goal of 80 percent, leaving many kids unprotected.

Below is a summary of shots children need:

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Fundraiser for SCSO K9 Unit

Fundraiser for SCSO K9 Unit

The Spokane County Sheriff's Office is hosting their first ever fundraiser for K9s.

Their “Furry Family Fun Day and Dog Walk” is being held Sunday, September 14 at Plante's Ferry Park in the Spokane Valley.

This fundraising effort is to raise money for training and equipment for the Spokane County Sheriff's K9 Unit dogs and their handlers, allowing them to perform at their optimum level and best serve the citizens of Spokane County.

This walk will be an easy 2-mile route and all are welcome. Registration isn't required, but all registered walkers will receive a free K9 Unit t-shirt. Pre-registration is $20 and day-of is $25.

Registration opens at 9 am, with the walk at 10:30 am, then wraps up with an afternoon of K9 demos, raffle drawings and games for kids and furry family members alike. There will also be a contest to name the newest member of the K9 Unit team.

For more information you can check out SCSOK9Unit on Facebook or email spokanecountyK9@gmail.com.

Marshals hunting felon who fled Spokane halfway house

Marshals hunting felon who fled Spokane halfway house

US Marshals are searching for a convicted felon who walked away from a Spokane halfway house after he was released from federal prison.

Merced Jose Zamora was a large scale methamphetamine dealer who was wrapping up a 13 year sentence when he escaped a re-entry center near the Spokane Interstate Fairgrounds.

Zamora was months away from being a totally free man but early Monday morning around 1:30 he left his halfway house. That facility is run by a private company that has a contract with the federal government to house and prepare ex-cons for a legal and productive life back in society.

Even though Zamora was convicted of multiple methamphetamine deals in Wyoming he was released to Spokane because he has family here.

Now marshals are looking for him and Deputy US Marshal Bob Doty said Zamora, 33, has a very unique tattoo on his neck that should make him east to spot.

Women and Children's Free Restaurant planning major move

Women and Children's Free Restaurant planning major move

The Women and Children's Free Restaurant, a local non-profit that feeds thousands of families a year, is planning to move to a new building which could allow them to reach even more families.

The restaurant is hoping to move from its current location on North Monroe to the old Center Pointe Building on the corner of Washington and Sinto.

For 26 years the restaurant has fed families from a small church basement, but in order to grow their organization, they need to grow their kitchen.

"We provide nourishment for their souls as well as nourishment for their bodies," Sherry Harbaugh said.

The kitchen serves up between 100 and 300 plates of food a day; no one is ever turned away.

"We've got everyone from single mom goes to work 40 hours a week but runs short of grocery money towards the end of the month, we have people that might not even have a home that come to dinner, we've got students, grandmothers and grandkids," Erin Stricher said.

For the first time in the organization's history they will soon have a building to call their own.

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Fire restrictions lifted in Colville Nat'l Forest

Fire restrictions lifted in Colville Nat'l Forest

Just in time for the holiday weekend, fire restrictions have been lifted for the Colville National Forest.

“With the wetting rains and cooler daytime temperatures we have been experiencing in the Colville National Forest, the anticipated fire danger is reduced enough to allow visitors to once again enjoy campfires in the forest,” said Fire Management Officer Tim Sampson. “Firewood cutters are also able to run chainsaws after 1 pm.”

Forest visitors must still use caution and exercise sound fire precautions, however, on National forest System Lands. Good fire building and extinguishing practices are advised such as:

  • Keeping campfires small
  • Using existing fire rings
  • Have a bucket, shovel, water and fire extinguisher readily available
  • Attend and fully extinguish all fires

Leave the firewood at home to keep forests safe

Leave the firewood at home to keep forests safe

The Idaho Department of Lands is reminding outdoor enthusiasts who are planning to camp this Labor Day weekend to leave the firewood at home!

As millions of Americans head into the wilderness for a weekend of fun, many bring their own firewood, not realizing that they put the nation's forests at risk by potentially spreading tree-killing pests. While most of these pests can't travel far on their own, many can hitchhike undetected on firewood, later emerging and starting infestations in new locations hundreds of miles away.

The Don't Move Firewood campaign began in 2007 as a response to the rapid spread of the emerald ash borer, an Asian beetle brought to the US in pre-packaged wood and responsible for killing 100 million ash trees since the early 1990's.

More than 450 other non-native forest insects and diseases are also established in the United States, many spread the same way.

Upcoming construction closing access to airport

Upcoming construction closing access to airport

The contractor working on the Highway 2/Spokane Airport interchange has adjusted their schedule and issued a revised plan for on and off-ramp closures while workers grind out old pavement and lay a new asphalt surface.

The full closures are limited to single-lane ramp sections where the roadway will be blocked during the work. The most intense work will be scheduled during hours when traffic counts are lowest.

During the following days and hours, single-lane segments of on and off ramps leading to and from Spokane International Airport on Highway 2 and Sunset Highway will be fully closed. Signed detours will direct drivers to and from Spokane International Airport. Drivers should expect slow traffic, congestion and delays on the detour routes. Travelers are urged to allow plenty of extra time to reach their destinations during these periods to avoid missing flight connections.

There will be no work from 5 am Friday, August 29 until 7 pm Tuesday, September 2.