Our Voice: Thumbs up to the many long-running local Christmas traditions


Thumbs up to area football teams.

Last weekend Hermiston brought home a state title when they beat the Silverton Foxes 34-12.

On Saturday, two Mid-Columbia high school football teams went to state.

Chiawana lost to Bothell 24-14 during their second trip to the title game in as many years. Liberty Christian fell to Neah Bay 56-38.

Congratulations to all three teams — their players, coaches and support systems.

It takes a lot of work to make it to a state championship game. There are a lot of hot practices in the 100-degree days of August and when you’re still playing in December, there is plenty cold days on the field as well.

This year has been an especially emotional one for the Riverhawks and Chiawana coach Steve Graff. His son Mac started on the team and was severely injured in a fall on Sept. 13. If anything, his hole on the team has made the group even stronger — GraffStrong, according to a student campaign.

’Tis the season

Thumbs up to the many homegrown Christmas celebrations in the Tri-Cities.

Members of the Clover Island Yacht Club pulled together a little lighted boat parade 50 years ago. What started as a few friends puttering around with lights has become an annual Tri-Cities event. That’s saying something.

We like the idea of community traditions.

And it’s just one of the many ways the Mid-Columbia says Merry Christmas.

The luminary display in Pasco’s Desert Plateau is the same type of activity. It started almost 30 years ago with a few neighbors. Now it includes several subdivisions that light 30,000 luminaries (candles cradled in sand inside a paper bag). It’s Dec. 13 and worth the drive to Road 44 and Burden Boulevard and head south to see it.

The boat parade was last week. If you missed it, put it on your calendar for next year. We’re betting it will be back ... again.

Putting the Grinch to shame

thumbs down to the scammers and thieves who steal other people’s Christmases.

Fraud is shameful any time of of the year, but to play on people’s generosity of the season is just coldhearted.

Often people with little seem to have very big hearts. These are the people scammers go after. The elderly are especially vulnerable.

Washington’s Secretary of State has an entire webpage dedicated to wise giving, https://www.sos.wa.gov/charities/givewisely.aspx. Or follow them on Facebook and get regular updates. It’s especially useful this time of year.

If you give to a charity, you want to know the money is going to where it’s supposed to. Don’t let yourself be pressured. Ask questions. If it doesn’t feel right or your still have questions, call the Attorney General’s Consumer Resource Center, 800-551-4636.