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Fundraiser for young girl with rare leukemia

Fundraiser for young girl with rare leukemia

The family of an 8-year-old Spokane girl diagnosed with an extremely rare form of leukemia is asking for your help.

Bella Carvalho was diagnosed with blastic plasmacytoid dendritic cell neoplasm (BPDCN) in June, a rare and aggressive blood disease that can cause, along with many other things, painful lesions on her skin. BPDCN is also a disease most commonly found in elderly men, not little girls.

From her GoFundMe Page:

From New York to Coeur d'Alene, Avenue Q opening this Friday

From New York to Coeur d'Alene, Avenue Q opening this Friday

The fur was flying Tuesday night at Coeur d'Alene's Lake City Playhouse as one of the final dress rehearsals got underway for this Friday's opening of Avenue Q.

The smash hit first debuted on Broadway in 2003, taking home Tony awards for Best Musical, Best Book and Best Original Score, and the cast of Lake City's production does their best to keep up the wild spirit of the show.

With a large cast, but only three human characters, many of the actors take a back seat to their puppet partners – providing a voice, but blending into the background.

“The biggest challenge is just finding the balance between the people and the puppets. If the actor is pushing too hard, you're focusing on them and not the puppet. So it's finding the right balance where you feel like you're watching the puppet but getting emotion from the person. It's a tricky little thing, but when it's right it's lovely,” said Director Troy Nickerson. It's an art form that took weeks to perfect.

Local Pony league baseball champs head to California

Local Pony league baseball champs head to California

A plucky group of 10-year-old boys are preparing to hop on a plane and head down to California to represent Washington as the regional Pony League Baseball champions!

All 11 kids have been involved with Spokane Indians Youth Baseball who united the Pony, Baby Ruth and Spokane Youth Sports Association leagues under one umbrella. After the regular season was over, try-outs were held for the all-star team and just a few weeks later the hard hitters swept the Mustang Northwest Regional Championship, winning all 11 games.

Since then, they've been working hard at Albertsons grocery stores around Spokane, asking for donations to help them make the trip to Anaheim.

“The money will help pay for their hotel room,” said Stephanie Erickson, the mother of one of the players. “The Pony organization books flights, which the parents pay half of, and this will help cover expenses like hotel rooms, food and other incidentals. We have a couple of families driving down with equipment to save on expenses like checking bat bags.”

The Bickett Building to give downtown a boost

The Bickett Building to give downtown a boost

From the outside, The Bickett looks like many buildings outside – old, brick and in need of a little TLC. On the inside, however, developer Jed Conklin and his band of construction workers have transformed the one-time hotel (and rumored brothel) into a streamlined work of art.

Standing at the bannister of the second floor, Conklin says they had a lot of work ahead of them when they first walked in.

“The entire building was open and full of pigeons,” he said. “The droppings were ankle deep in places, and the rain was pouring in.”

Amazingly, Conklin was able to salvage the original floors, now scraped clean and polished to a smooth finish without even a creak to give away its century of history. The original floor plans are still visible in the wood, outlining the four single-occupancy rooms that now make up each apartment.

“We wanted to save as much as we could,” Conklin explained. “Even the shelves are made of recycled lumber from somewhere else in the building.”

Family Carnival fundraiser to welcome home returning soldiers

Family Carnival fundraiser to welcome home returning soldiers

You can enjoy the sun this weekend and support local troops at the same time with a Family Carnival in the Spokane Valley.

Penny Horst is a military spouse and group coordinator for family readiness, working with the families of soldiers on deployment to keep them updated on their loved ones status and eventual return date.

She says the next group of soldiers coming home are from across the inland northwest, and all stationed at the Hayden Army Reserve Station in north Idaho. She's organizing Saturday's carnival to help cover their welcome home party.

“We want to make sure family members aren't responsible for the costs,” Horst said.

The carnival is being held at the Combat Vet Riders clubhouse in the Spokane Valley from 11 am to 4 pm, and the riders are donating their time and services to help pull of the afternoon of fun.

 

Family Carnival

Saturday, July 12