JULY 15, 2010

Orofino Chamber of Commerce

Steelhead and chinook thrive at the hatchery

   Jerry McGehee, Hatchery Manager for the Clearwater Hatchery, was the guest and keynote speaker at the chamber luncheon held July 7.

   Mr. McGehee gave an interesting presentation of how the hatchery operates including, funding, its history, which fish are raised, and how they are transported and later released.

   The Region 2 Clearwater Hatchery sits on the Ahsahka side of the Clearwater River. “Many people wonder why we have two separate hatcheries in the same area,” said McGehee. The answer is simple; the quality of the available water makes it ideal for raising fish.

   The source of the water for the “runways” where fish are raised is Dworshak Reservoir. The Clearwater Hatchery consists of four satellite facilities which, according to their website is, “the largest hatchery complex constructed by the Army Corp of Engineers under the Lower Snake River Compensation Plan.”


   The main Clearwater Hatchery and visitor center is open year round from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Pacific Time daily. Group tours can be arranged by telephoning 208-476-3331. There is a display of Nez Perce artifacts from when the dam was constructed. There are interesting things for kids to see and do including a fish “wheel of fortune” at the visitor center. The hatchery is located at: 4156 Ahsahka Rd. For more information visit the website at:

4th of July

   The annual 4th of July raft race was a great success with six teams participating.

   The winners of the “Reason for every Season” raffle were: Chris Merry who won the umbrella. Mike Hiskett won the BBQ. Mark Fronce won the rod and reel kit, and the ski package was won by Dennis Arave.

   The fireworks display was one of the best yet. Thanks to everyone who helped.

ITD wide load meetings

   Mayor, Ryan Smathers and Orofino Chamber of Commerce, Executive Director, Heather Burnham attended informational meetings held by the Idaho Transportation Department concerning the upcoming moves of oversized equipment being moved on Hwy. 12. Burnham made the suggestion that the oil companies need to consider assisting local communities involved by providing grant money.

   Mayor Smathers said the meetings consisted of 16 poster boards with representatives to answer questions rather than a presentation with a Q & A session to follow.

Business after Hours

   The next Business after Hours get-together will be will be held at the Frame of Mind Gallery, Thursday, July 15, between 5 and 7 p.m. The gallery is owned by Tony Riccomini, who is the newest member welcomed by the chamber. It is located at 235 Johnson Ave.

Next meeting

   The next regular meeting is scheduled for July 21, at 12 noon, at the Ponderosa Restaurant. City Administrator, Rick Laam, will address the city’s plans for upgrading the water system.