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Freelance reporter Tom Henderson, and Robert(Bob)Dunn, the subject of our story on A1 titled “World War II veteran gets parade for his birthday” both did us an enormous favor this week.

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The Dallas School District will investigate the history of its high school’s mascot, the Dragons. It was designated as the mascot in 1938, selected by Dallas High School students, reportedly to give the school’s sports teams a more intimidating image to play under as compared to the previous…

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To Dallas High School and Central High School graduates: congratulations on your achievement. This year has been historic — some would say historically strange — but that didn’t stop you from finishing your education. Nice work.

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Welcome to Phase 1, Polk County. It was great to see all the open signs around town, and people stopping by recently reopened businesses.

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Do you have something to say about the upcoming primary election? You have just one more week to submit a letter to the editor on a election issue or candidate before ballots are due on May 19. Last call for letters is the May 13 edition. Letters for that issue are due May 11 at noon.

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Another election season has arrived, though in this pandemic it may have been easy to forget about it. Oregon’s primary election is May 19. Ballots will be mailed to voters.

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We are pleased to announce the Itemizer-Observer, your local newspaper since 1875, will continue, thanks to new ownership by Scott Olson.

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We’ve seen a lot of posts on Facebook questioning the mass amount of information available and how reliable it may or may not be. We want you to know that getting reliable information to you is our job. It’s our job to get it right for you, and to update it as quickly as we can. If you’ve be…

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As the novel coronavirus and Oregon’s response to it changes almost daily, your local reporters at the Polk County Itemizer-Observer have been working around the clock to keep you informed of the news as it happens.

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With more news of COVID-19, it is important to stay calm and maintain your health and that of your family to the best of your ability. Whether you think the news has been blown out of proportion, or you are frustrated at the lack of information being released — as we are — the advice to wash…

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While the Dallas School District Board of Directors heard once again from teachers and staff at one of their elementary schools about the disruptive — and frankly, abusive — behavior from some students toward teachers and assistants, board members started thinking outside the box.

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Next year, the residents of Dallas will be asked to reach into their pockets on behalf of their first responders. They will be asked to fund a $19 million bond to pay for a new facility to house the firefighters and police officers who look out for their safety and the safety of their person…

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The city of Monmouth is again talking about a new city hall. If you have never been inside, you may wonder what the fuss is about. Why a new building? What is wrong with the current city hall?

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We are glad to see the Polk County Community Connect event back to its roots, ready to help all who need help. In the past couple of years, the event shifted to focus on those who were unsheltered homeless. The shift was intended to provide a place for those who are truly out in the open a w…

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In 2016, the state Legislature announced that sex education needed to be taught in grades kindergarten through 12th grade as a matter of health education.

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We at the Itemizer-Observer are thrilled to be publishing next week on Christmas Day.

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Homeless is not something you find only in big cities. People who are homeless are often easier to spot, and perhaps expected, when walking around a large metro area. But homelessness affects all walks of life in all sizes of towns.

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Two long-standing groups in Dallas who have helped families in need each Christmas have joined forces to help even more with gifts under trees and food on tables.

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Monmouth City Councilor and vice president of the board of directors for the Monmouth-Independence Network, Chris Lopez, published a letter online calling some statements made in last week’s Itemizer-Observer false.

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Phew. Fall sports has ended, and what a season it was! All of our Polk County athletes worked hard over the last several months to be the best they can be. And our coaches were right there alongside them, working long hours, evenings and weekends.

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Recently, Gooseneck rOAd, a popular place for people to go and practice target shooting, was shut down by the Oregon Forestry Department. Why? The reason is two-fold: expanding the logging roads and clearing out trees that are too close to the road; and because of the amount of vandalism. Al…

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All Hallows Eve is tomorrow, and many events are planned throughout Polk County, from downtown trick-or-treats to costume parties at homes and bars and restaurants.

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The Friends of the Dallas Aquatic Center passed out about 1,200 free passes to students at Dallas elementary schools, opening the way for children to get exposure to swimming and playing in the water.

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So far, this fall has been day after day of mostly sunny skies and cold mornings, but the rain is due to revisit us as soon as today — and it may last a week before we see another break.

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With fall well on underway, the sunset is coming earlier. Often the evening feels even darker earlier as clouds and rain cover the county. That doesn’t mean people aren’t out enjoying the crisp evening — and morning — air! What it does mean is those who are out for walks or jogs or bicycle r…

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Western Oregon University is back in session this week with New Student Week. Classes start full time on Monday.

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Saturday in Polk County is packed with opportunities for entertainment, exercise (for a good cause), getting ready for disaster, and an event at the Polk County Museum, to name a few.

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This year seems to be the year of the tree. Earlier, the development of a youth center in Independence required removing some well-established trees. In Monmouth at the S-curves, trees were removed to make way for development of the area.

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We’ve been talking a lot about sidewalks in our community lately. In Monmouth, sidewalk repair is the responsibility of home or business owners.    We’ve heard repeatedly about the burden that places on people, particularly those on fixed incomes. Their city staff and council are looking at …

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As your local news source, it is our job to ask questions, particularly of public officials and contractors — and when your tax dollars are being spent.

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The Polk County Fair has come and gone. Projects completed and awarded, livestock raised and sold. It’s officially the Dog Days of August.

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It’s that time again! The Polk County Fair kicks off on Thursday and runs through Saturday, packed with events and activities for the whole family. The fair takes year-round work by groups and individuals to make it successful. This year, we’ll have perhaps one of the mildest weather seasons…

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The city of Dallas is hiring a new city manager, and residents have an opportunity to meet the candidates Monday evening at the Dallas Civic Center.

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The Dallas School District is paying for unpaid lunches after coming up short by about $20,000 in the food service program.

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We’ve long noticed that in our county, our young Boy Scouts seem to be motivated to reach the rank of Eagle Scout.

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Polk County Relay for Life was Saturday through Sunday morning at Riverview Park in Independence. Relay for Life, an American Cancer Society event, is a 24-hour walk and fundraiser to help find a cure for cancer. It also raises money for programs that are built to support those in the battle.

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With Memorial Day behind us, the summer events in Polk County start heating up, starting Saturday with more things to do than there is time to do them all.

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Regardless of how you vote, remember ballots are due by 8 p.m. on Tuesday, May 21. It’s probably too late to get them in the mail, so look for a drop box near you (see page A3) and be sure to swing by and deliver it. The good news about the drop boxes is no postage is required.

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You can tell the weather has turned nice again as people of all ages — and often their pets — are out using our parks and walking the paths, soaking in the sun.

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The city of Dallas has taken over planning the city’s events for 2019. Previously, the Dallas Area Visitors Center was charged with organizing the Polk County Bounty Market, the Fourth of July, Summerfest and Winterfest, along with a few other things sprinkled in such as the Old Timers Picni…

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Facebook and other social media outlets have a myriad of benefits to users — connecting people, families and communities. They can provide an open forum for discussion about local issues or spread information quickly — whether good or bad.

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This week, let us pause for a moment and reflect on the planet we call home. Those who celebrate Easter are in the middle of Holy Week while flowers and trees bloom.

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Dallas has joined efforts in welcoming our two- and three-wheeling friends to town, from building a bike hostel above Latitude One to looking at bike trails, repair stations and generally increasing access for those who prefer to travel via bicycle.