Options abound to recycle old Christmas trees

December 31, 2012

NEW — 2 p.m. Dec. 31, 2012

Christmas is history, and residents ready to pitch old Christmas trees can do so in different ways.

Chip trees — minus tinsel and other decorations — into landscaping material or ground finer into a composting soil amendment.

Customers tired of evergreens dropping brown needles can set out trees for yard waste collection on regular yard waste collection days.

Haulers do not collect trees decked in flocking or decorations. Contact garbage haulers for details; CleanScapes and Allied Waste — a local name for national company Republic Services — serve Issaquah.

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State planners offer tools to ease holiday travel headaches

December 26, 2012

NEW — 6 a.m. Dec. 26, 2012

The state Department of Transportation delivered gifts to holiday travelers — tips to avoid travel-related headaches.

The agency offers numerous travel information tools for motorists headed out between Christmas and New Year’s Day.

Travelers planning to hit state highways can find information on the Department of Transportation website about the times and places drivers can expect to experience holiday weekend delays, including U.S. 2, Interstate 90, and Interstate 5 at the Canadian border, and between Olympia and Tacoma.

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Issaquah police trade blue for red to brighten Christmas for families

December 25, 2012

Officer swaps blue uniform for red suit to play Santa

Santa Claus delivers gifts to 7-year-old Blanca Gomez and 6-year-old Sergio Gomez Jr. as the Issaquah Police Department delivers Christmas gifts to local families Dec. 19. By Jacqueline Kerness/Issaquah Police Department

Santa Claus traded the sleigh for a police SUV not long before Christmas.

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When did the holidays go up for sale?

December 25, 2012

“Peace on Earth and goodwill toward men. Buy now and your cost will be only $9.95.”

Jacob Brunette
Issaquah High School

That is the American holiday season in a nutshell; the time of year in which we celebrate love, peace and incredible savings.

It seems that every year, however, the incredible savings start sooner, and the love and peace get pushed further into the background.

As soon as Halloween is over, the holiday season has begun. Stores start selling Christmas lights and decorations. Santa Claus appears on TV, advertising cars and clothing.

Holiday music loops endlessly in the mall. Every year, the onslaught of commercials starts a little sooner in an attempt to extend the lucrative period of holiday shopping for as long as possible.

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How to give meaningful gifts for Christmas

December 25, 2012

Christmas is fast approaching, and some of us are feeling stuck regarding what to get our friends and family for the big holiday.

Madeline Wells
Issaquah High School

Before you give up and grab the nearest gift card, stop and think. Wouldn’t it be great to receive a truly meaningful gift? It’s the thought that counts, right?

You may recall the cute, handmade gifts you made for your parents for Christmas when you were little. Giving meaningful gifts when you’re older is just like that, just maybe minus the artistic skills of a 5-year-old. Here’s how to give a gift that means a lot:

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Merry Christmas Issaquah fundraising drive is 45 percent under goal

December 25, 2012

The all-volunteer organization Issaquah Community Services provided more than $88,000 in assistance to local families last year, in the form of rent and utility assistance, or emergency aid.

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Expect reduced transit service on Christmas

December 23, 2012

NEW — 6 p.m. Dec. 23, 2012

Expect reduced transit service from Christmas Eve until after 2013 arrives, as King County Metro Transit and Sound Transit adjust schedules for the holidays.

Metro Transit operates on holiday and reduced weekday schedules Christmas week and during the New Year’s holidays.

The agency operates on reduced weekday bus service Monday, Christmas Eve, and on a Sunday schedule for Christmas. Then, transit goes to reduced weekday bus service from Wednesday to Friday.

Using a limited schedule over holiday periods from November through January is estimated to save Metro Transit about $1 million each year. The agency typically experiences a drop of about 15 percent in ridership during the holiday week.

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Eastside Fire & Rescue offers safety tips after holiday-related fires

December 23, 2012

NEW — 2 p.m. Dec. 23, 2012

Eastside Fire & Rescue firefighters have responded to blazing involving holiday decorations and Christmas trees as the holiday approaches.

Decorations can increase the chances of fire and with the holiday only days away, agency officials asked the public to keep fire safety in mind when decorating and entertaining.

The holidays can quickly turn from joyful to tragic when fire occurs.

Based on data from the National Fire Protection Association and the U.S. Fire Administration, about 240 home fires involving Christmas trees and another 150 home fires involving holiday lights, unattended candles and other holiday decorations occur each year.

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Walmart invites Issaquah students to ‘Shop with a Cop’

December 18, 2012

First grader Cyrus Comia, 7, one of 10 Issaquah Valley Elementary School students on the ‘Shop with a Cop’ outing, takes toys to a cart as Issaquah Police Sgt. Jeff Johnson helps keep him on his gift-card budget. Comia also bought some socks for his grandmother. By Greg Farrar

In what was a scene straight out of a schoolyard ballfield, 10 officers from the Issaquah and Bellevue police departments stood in a line just waiting to get picked.

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Merry Christmas Issaquah helps during hardships all year

December 18, 2012

Sudden hardships can expose people reeling from the effects of the fragile economy to even more risk — financial trouble, utility shutdowns and, in extreme cases, homelessness.

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