Saturday, April 30, 2011

Kuna American Legion Yard Sale happening today

The American Legion Auxiliary Unit 142 Yard Sale is happening 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. today, Saturday, April 30, at 158 Cedar Ave., Kuna.
There will be lots of miscellaneous items, including a new bread maker, nice microwaves, a McCallah mini-mack chain saw that works well, some clothes, a Philco stereo-sonic high-fidelity solid state radio-record player plays 16-33-45s and 78’s, works! It’s in a nice console; an (antique) Royal foot pedal sewing machine (from Illinois sewing machine Co. Rockford); a donation from an estate sale (nice items). There will also be a plant sale, including perennials, hosta, columbine, Bergenias, lung wort (raspberry splash), lilies, miniature bronze gold iris. There will also be a small bake sale. Come buy a brownie and a cup of coffee and look around. Also we will be selling tickets for the George Foreman electric grill! This is for Syringa Girls State to help the junior girls go to state for 2012.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Prescription drug takeback is tomorrow morning in Kuna

Turn in unused or expired prescription medication for safe disposal during a prescription drug takeback program scheduled for 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, April 30, at Paul’s Market, 700 E. Avalon St., in Kuna.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Great letter in this week's Kuna Melba News

There's a great letter in this week's Kuna Melba News from Mishelle Wasden, who is waxing nostalgic about the past 10 years she has spent living in Kuna. She sent it to us last week, kind of off the cuff, just writing down what was on her mind, and she was wondering if it would even be something we'd be interested in publishing.
Check out the whole letter for yourself, on Page 4, of this week's issue, but here's a little excerpt:
"Now as my oldest son prepares to graduate from Kuna High School next month, I just want to say thanks to the community of Kuna. I know this town isn’t perfect and it has its challenges just like most small towns. But I just wanted to pause for a moment and say thanks Kuna it’s been a fun 10 years!"
Thank you, Mishelle, for sharing your memories. Great letter.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Kuna Melba News working on comics section

One of my favorite subscribers came into the office a couple of weeks ago to renew his subscription.
I say he’s one of my favorite subscribers because he came to a Kuna City Council budget hearing two years ago to testify against property tax increases and then, as an aside, he told the whole gathering what a great local weekly newspaper we have in Kuna. I had no idea who he was until that day, but he instantly became one of my favorite subscribers.
Anyway, when this gentleman came into the office the other day he asked when we’re going to have comics in the paper.
Now, when one of my favorite subscribers makes a pitch for a new feature in the paper, I listen.
We’ve actually been working on a comics section for well over a year now. We’ve been communicating with a company called Funnies Extra. The business model is to have a full-color comics section printed and inserted into hundreds of weekly newspapers in the United States and Canada, with the costs of the printing paid by some national advertisers. It would be nearly free to us as a newspaper and would enable us to offer another feature for our readers.
Funnies Extra has been working hard at signing up newspapers and advertisers, nearing 200 papers with over a half-million weekly circulation.
However, many of the national media buyers indicated that they needed more circulation than that for them to advertise with us.
Sheesh. Weekly newspapers have always been the redheaded stepchild in the newspaper family, but advertisers, particularly national advertisers, need to realize they are missing out on a big chunk of potential customers.
Just look at my favorite subscriber. He loves his local paper. He invites it into his home every week, and he reads it voraciously. Because we are so local, our readers tend to spend a lot of time with our papers. According to the 2010 National Newspaper Association annual readership survey, on average, readers spent 37.5 minutes reading local newspapers.
In addition, the study found that 29 percent of readers read all of the content of a local newspaper, 49 percent read most of it, and 21 percent some of it, suggesting that in small communities the content in local newspapers was well read.
Newspapers continued to be the primary source of information about local communities, with 49 percent of the vote, with friends and relatives in a distant second at 17.5 percent (I wonder where the friends and relatives learned about the local news). Television came in third place at 16 percent. Of course, folks who rely on TV news for information about their local community, as they say, don’t know what they don’t know.
By the way, 67 percent of the respondents said they rarely or never use direct mail to make purchasing decisions. Another 22 percent said sometimes, with only 11 percent saying very often or often. Radio does even worse with 6 percent using radio very often or often to make purchasing decisions. Meanwhile, 40 percent of respondents said newspaper advertising is somewhat influential or very influential in making purchasing decisions.
Anyway, my point in all of this is to say that national advertisers are just missing the boat here with a golden opportunity to reach a vital segment of the market. Hopefully, our good friends at Funnies Extra will convince them of that and we can get that comics section in the Kuna Melba News soon.
In the meantime, you can now go online at to read the comics every week. Let us know what you think.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Kuna Community Food Bank is there for those who need it

Kuna Community Food Bank, affiliated with the Idaho Foodbank, is located in the basement of the Kuna United Methodist Church, 260 W. 4th St., and is available to those in need.
Started in 1983, this agency provides emergency food to the Kuna community and those living within the Kuna school district boundaries.
The Food Bank’s largest food drive is the annual “Scouting For Food” drive in conjunction with local Boy Scouts and Cub Scouts, who collect over 12,000 pounds of food. The Kuna Food Bank also benefits from the annual Letter Carriers’ Food Drive.
To receive food assistance, call the Kuna Community Food Bank at 922-4745 (the Kuna United Methodist Church) and leave a message. One of the Food Bank’s volunteers will call you to schedule an appointment.
The Food Bank requires clients to be in the Kuna school district, and clients are limited how often they can get food, in order that the Food Bank can help as many as possible.
To donate food or funds, call 922-4745, or mail your check to: Kuna Food Bank, P.O. Box 17, Kuna ID 83634.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Drivers in Kuna and Melba no longer have to pay to re-register their vehicles

Vehicle registrations of Ada and Canyon county drivers who obtain a passing emissions test after having had their registrations revoked will be automatically reinstated at no charge when a new law approved by the 2011 Legislature takes effect.
Drivers whose vehicles were not tested or failed have been required to go into a Division of Motor Vehicles office and pay to have their registrations reinstated after they obtained a passing emissions test.
There will no longer be any need to visit the DMV or to pay to get your registration reinstated after securing a passing emissions test from an Ada or Canyon County testing site, according to Jonathan Pettit, of the Idaho Department of Environmental Quality, which oversees the program in Canyon County and Kuna. Reinstatement will occur automatically within three business days after a passing emissions test. Pettit noted that it will still be illegal to drive a vehicle with an invalid registration.
Drivers in Canyon County or the city of Kuna can check when their vehicles are scheduled to be tested by visiting and entering their license plate number under the “Test Due Date” option or by calling 1-866-623-8378. Ada County drivers can contact the Air Quality Board at (208) 377-9191.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Cool, fun, FREE event this week in Kuna: Science Expo

Looking for a cool, free event to attend in Kuna this week while at the same time learn something new and find out what the kids are learning these days?
Then head out the annual Kuna High School Spring Science Expo from 5 to 7 p.m. on Wednesday and Thursday, April 27 and 28, at the high school.
This is a major event, with about 800 students showing off their science class presentations.
The entire community is invited, not just parents and students. Casual observers will have a chance to just stroll around, ask questions and check out some very cool exhibits.
It will all take place at the Kuna High School commons, science wing and library.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Kuna Clean-Up Day is today

If you see a weekly newspaper editor in a Scout leader uniform carrying a garbage bag and cleaning up the alley between Fourth Street and Main Street, that would be me.
The annual Kuna Clean-Up Project is taking place today, Saturday, April 23, throughout the city of Kuna.
There will be free curbside trash removal provided by J&M Sanitation for businesses and residents (placed at curbside by 8 a.m. on April 23) within the boundaries of Hubbard Road, King Road, and Ten Mile Road and Meridian Road.
No tree limbs, brush or large wood items will be taken on Clean-Up Day this year. These items can be placed on the curb for weekly regular pick-up throughout the year. Please make sure they are bundled and no longer than 4 feet.
Televisions and computer monitors will be accepted.
Dead washers, dryers, and refrigerators (refrigerators with compressors will cost $10), as well as hazardous wastes may be dropped off in the parking lot behind Kuna City Park on Saturday, April 23, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tires may also be dropped off behind the park for a charge.
In conjunction with Kuna’s Annual Clean-Up Project a drop-off site for hazardous and non-hazardous waste will provide an environmentally sound method for Kuna area residents to dispose of the following items:
Used Oil Filters
Used Motor Oil – Accepted only in containers, 5 gallon size or smaller.
Car and Household Batteries
Cleaners (acid & lye)
Latex Paint – Accepted only in containers, 5 gallon size or smaller.
Oil Base Paint – Limited to quantities of 5 gallons or less per household.
Pesticides, Herbicides, and Fertilizers
Residential refrigerators and air conditioners with compressor
(2 per household: $10 each unit – No Dealers or Commercial Units)
Tires – can be disposed of for a charge
Passenger/Motorcycle/ATV Tires: $2.00 each off rim /$4.25 on rim
Light Truck Tires: $2.50 off rim /$4.25 on rim
Large Truck Tires: $8.00 off rim /$16.00 on rim
Farm Tires: Negotiated
Larger or Odd Tires: By bid or negotiated

Friday, April 22, 2011

Treat yourself to an evening of uniquely-American music right here in Kuna tonight

The KPAC Events Council is pleased to present Northwest Vocal Project at the Kuna Performing Arts Center on tonight, Friday, April 22, at 7:30 p.m.
Known as "Seattle's Vocal Fraternity", NVP is an ever-growing group of men who have made it their mission to instill in their audiences a love for the truly American art form of Barbershop music. Performing gospel and jazz, traditional barbershop and contemporary, NVP has won numerous awards since their inception in 2007. Most recently they placed 1st at the International Youth Chorus Festival held in Las Vegas this past January. You can listen to a sampling of their music online at
Drew Osterhout, the NVP's founder, hopes to see large numbers of high school and middle school students in attendance at the concert. Drew explains, "If they think traditional barbershop is old fashioned, their minds will be changed after watching our performance." Patrons will be pleased to know that NVP has even invited a few standout youth quartets to share the stage with them!
NVP showcases intricate a cappella arrangements that will impress and inspire. They blend youthful energy and professional precision to create a unique and unforgettable performance.
Come see and hear for yourself the refreshing sound and thoroughly entertaining program of the Northwest Vocal Project.
The KPAC Events Council is confident that families will value the wholesome entertainment this concert provides them. "We wanted to keep the ticket price as low as we could and still be able to cover the expenses of pulling off a big event such as this. Getting about 30 young men from Seattle to Kuna is no small feat!" explains Marci Durrant, KPAC Events Council President. For about the price of a movie, she believes that NVP's program will remain in your memory far longer than the latest film productions. "We are so grateful to Richard Lapp and the Boise Chordsmen for their assistance with housing and transportation for the Northwest Vocal Project members. We are thrilled to have their support of our efforts in bringing this talented group of young men to Kuna."
General admission tickets are only $10, $8 for students with a valid ID, and are available now from the KPAC website at Tickets may also be purchased from these Kuna businesses: The UPS Store at 1577 N. Linder Road, just north of the Deerflat intersection, and Kuna True Value Hardware at 467 W. Main Street.
The Kuna Performing Arts Center is located on the Kuna High School campus at 637 E. Deerflat Road, six miles south of the Meridian Road exit off I-84. Doors will open at 6:30.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

SCORE to speak at today's Kuna Chamber of Commerce meeting

Come on over to the Kuna Chamber of Commerce meeting today.
The meeting will feature Norm Beckert from SCORE, “Counselors to America’s Small Business,” who will discuss the background of SCORE, the services offered, the resources available, examples of SCORE clients, workshops, counseling locations and will answer questions.
Come see what SCORE can do for your business at no charge.
The meeting will take place from 11:45 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Thursday, April 21, at Kuna City Hall, 763 W. Avalon St.
Lunch, catered by Fiesta Guadalajara, will be served. Cost for lunch is $10 for chamber members, $15 for guests.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Listen up, Kuna: Here are 13 Ways to Kill Your Community

I have been reading a fascinating book, “13 Ways to Kill Your Community,” by Doug Griffiths and Kelly Clemmer.
Griffiths is a teacher/farmer/politician in rural Alberta, Canada, who became obsessed with preserving the rural small-town way of life. He started doing it out of self-interest — he lived in one rural community, taught school in another and farmed in yet another — and he wanted to preserve his small towns for his children and his grandchildren. He began researching rural development and rural sustainability, gave talks on the topic, wrote columns in local newspapers, and eventually ran for a seat on his provincial legislature, the equivalent of our state Legislature.
After being elected, he was assigned to write a study on rural development in the province. Over three years, he visited 270 communities in Alberta and co-wrote a report with over 70 recommendations for rural sustainability.
The title comes from a bit of reverse psychology he used with his students. Rather than lay out a path to success for students, he would instead ask them how would they accomplish the goal of becoming a failure in life. Become a drug addict would be one answer. What’s the first step toward that long-term goal? Answer: Smoke some pot this weekend. He could see the lightbulbs start to turn on. Another way to become a failure in life: Flunk out of school. What’s the very first step you’d take to accomplish that goal? Don’t study for tomorrow’s test and fail it.
So on his way to visit a small town that just didn’t get it to give his third talk on rural development, he came up with the idea of telling that town how to fail, how to kill the community.
Here are the 13 ways he came up with to kill your community:
1. Don’t Have Quality Water.
2. Don’t Attract Business.
3. Ignore Your Youth.
4. Deceive Yourself About Your Real Needs or Values.
5. Shop Elsewhere.
6. Don’t Paint.
7. Don’t Cooperate.
8. Live in the Past.
9. Ignore Your Seniors.
10. Reject Everything New.
11. Ignore Outsiders.
12. Become Complacent.
13. Don’t Take Responsibility.
Does it sound like there’s anything in there that pertains to Kuna? I thought so, too.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Kuna City Council meeting is tonight

Kuna City Council will meet at 7 p.m. tonight at City Hall, 763 W. Avalon St. The public, as always, is invited to attend.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Kuna Easter Egg Hunt is Saturday, April 23

The annual Kuna Easter Egg Hunt is at 10 a.m. on Saturday, April 23, at the Kuna High School football field. Park in the west parking lot and be on the field ready to go at 10 a.m. sharp.

Kuna to consider urban renewal agency

Kuna City Council members on Tuesday will consider the formation of an urban renewal agency.
A resolution to begin the formation of an urban renewal agency is on the agenda for the next City Council meeting, which starts at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, April 19, at Kuna City Hall, 763 W. Avalon St. The meeting is open to the public.
“It is anticipated that the Urban Renewal Agency intends to prepare an Urban Renewal Plan containing a revenue allocation financing provision,” according to the resolution.
The resolution also states “there are one or more areas within the City of Kuna which are deteriorating or deteriorated areas.”
Citing Idaho Code, Section 50-2006(b), the resolution states “the Mayor is authorized and directed to appoint, with the advice and consent of the City Council, not less than three (3) commissioners nor more than nine (9) commissioners of the Urban Renewal Agency.”

Very cool thing: Fish and Game fishing trailer is coming to Kuna Saturday

The Idaho Department of Fish and Game’s fishing trailer will be at Kuna’s Sego Prairie Pond, at the end of Sego Prairie Street, on the following days:
• Saturday, April 23, 3 to 7 p.m.
• Tuesday, June 7, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
The trailer, stocked with equipment and information, is making nearly 30 appearances at local ponds across the region, promoting fishing as part of a healthy outdoor lifestyle.
To learn more about the trailer, contact the Fish and Game Nampa office at 465-8465. More information regarding the fishing trailer is also available on Fish and Game’s website at

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Good news, Kuna: New co-ed adult softball league is forming

A co-ed adult softball league in Kuna is now being formed for this summer. Organizers are having a meeting at 7 p.m. on Thursday, April 28, at the Kuna city park ballfields. RSVP to or if you are planning to attend. This is a preliminary meeting to gauge interest. Organizers will be accepting entire teams, or there will be an individual sign-up if you do not have a team.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Kuna Grange honors local citizens

The Kuna Grange last night held its annual ceremony to recognize local citizens who contribute to the well-being of the Kuna community.
This year, award recipients include: Educator of the Year, Angela Hemingway; Policeman of the Year, Weston Bunnell; Fireman of the Year, Joe Link; and Citizen of the Year, Richard Cardoza.
Back in 2007, Nicola and I were surprised and honored to receive the citizen of the year award. It's a great honor from a great local organization.
Nationally, and as declared by Idaho Lt. Gov. Brad Little in a recent proclamation, April has been recognized as Grange Month. In celebration, annual awards are bestowed upon citizens by the Kuna Grange, to honor those who have been identified as having made a significant contribution to the Kuna community.
Established in 1867, The National Grange is the oldest agricultural and rural community service organization.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Interested in the Kuna Farmers Market? Organizational meeting is tomorrow morning

Come to the kickoff meeting for the Kuna Farmers Market on Saturday, April 16, at 10 a.m. at the fire station in Kuna. Everyone is welcome.
Opening Day for the Kuna Farmers Market will be Saturday, May 7, at 9 a.m.
This year, the Farmers Market will be at a new location, centrally located, at the Col. Bernard Fisher Veterans Memorial Park in downtown Kuna, under the water tower. This will make the market more visible, and the park is a pleasant place to spend the morning with family and friends.
The kick-off meeting this Saturday will explain how to become a vendor, where the market will be located, when the market will be open and to help you get to know who we are. The meeting is scheduled for two hours, but it doesn’t usually take that long. To make it even better, we all share some of Ione Zufeldt’s Famous Knutty Knots (yum).
If you have a business that would like to sponsor the market, we have three levels of sponsorship that can bring your business some welcome advertising as well as help the Farmers Market. For more, visit, or follow us on Facebook.

Kuna school district holds first open negotiation session

On Monday, I sat in on the first open meeting of the negotiation sessions for the Kuna teachers contract. Present were school board members Ginny Greger and Kevin Gifford, Superintendent Jay Hummel, business manager Bryan Fletcher and teachers Josh Noteboom, Dan Blitman, Jen Wright, Matt Krumm and Stacee Marshall. Most of the meeting was spent trying to lay out which parts of the contract are up for negotiation, which are no longer part of negotiations and which parts need legal clarification based on new state laws. The next scheduled meeting is at 4 p.m. on Tuesday, April 26, at the district office, 711 E. Porter Road.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Check out coupons from Les Schwab in this week's Kuna Melba News

Check out the full-page ad from Les Schwab on the back page of this week's Kuna Melba News. In addition to having some great deals on some tires, they also have coupons for $50 or $25 off tire purchases, $50 or $25 off brake service and a buy 3 get 1 free tire siping deal. If you need new tires or brake service, looks like now is a good time to go get it done. You'll be all set for the summer driving season. I'm told that Les Schwab even has tires that are made in the United States.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Kuna school board could be more open

A couple of months ago, the Kuna school district unveiled its newly redesigned website. It’s a very attractive site with a lot of new bells and whistles. You can check it out at The folks who worked on it clearly did a very good job, and they should be commended.
However, I would like to see the district take it just one step further in the interest of open government. One of the district’s stated goals in redesigning the website was to provide better communication with the public. That’s why I’d like to see the district do a better job of posting their school board agendas and their minutes on the website.
You have to click through a couple of times to find out that the school board meetings are on the second Tuesdays of each month. But I think this could be improved to put the actual date of the next board meeting. I’d also like to see it on the home page, right up front, without having to click through two or three times into the site. After all, the school board should be the number one interaction between the public and the school district.
Currently, there are no agendas even posted on the district’s website. Agendas are not finalized generally until the Thursday before the meeting, which means I am not able to publish the agenda in the issue of the Kuna Melba News before the meeting. As the owner of the local paper, I get a copy of the agenda faxed to me, but surely, it’s not practical to fax the agenda to 9,200 households in the school district. How can school district patrons find out what’s happening at the next school board meeting and whether they should attend or not?
Next, you may recall that a couple of years ago, I wrote a couple of editorials urging the city of Kuna to post all of their City Council “packet” documents online. I was happy to report that shortly thereafter, the city began posting all of those documents on their website, giving residents an opportunity to learn more about what was going to be discussed at the upcoming meeting and to follow along with the council members during the meeting.
Before, a council member would say, “On Page 3 of 12, Section III, letter a., it states…..” Members of the audience could only guess at what they were talking about. Now, any member of the public can print out the documents at home, then come to the meeting to keep up with the discussion. This move saved the city money. That’s because every week, I would request my own copy of the City Council packet, which the city provided to me as the owner of the local paper. Now, the city doesn’t spend a drop of printer ink on me, because I print out the packet myself from my office.
Currently, I file a public records request every month with the Kuna school district requesting a copy of the school board packet. When I show up at the meeting, there it is waiting for me, so that I can follow along and refer back to the documents when I’m writing a story. If the district were to post their packet online, not only would they not have to print out a copy for me, they would be making the documents available to every single resident in the school district.
So how about it, school board? Do you want the Kuna school district to be more open and accessible to the patrons? If so, this would be a good first step.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Head out to Kuna's Indian Creek Winery this weekend

Head out to Indian Creek Winery for its Spring Release Weekend, April 15, 16 and 17 from 12 to 5 p.m.
A weekend-long celebration of spring with the release of new wines and Farmstead Artisan Goat Cheeses from Idaho’s Snake River Valley. Free wine tastings and gourmet cheese plates available for purchase. Indian Creek Winery is located at 1000 N. McDermott Road, just north of West Kuna Road.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Kuna teacher negotiation meeting happening today at 4 p.m.

I have often said that I consider myself a little strange because I like going to City Council meetings and school board meetings. I like reading budgets and calculating taxes.
So it may come as no surprise that I'm excited about a new meeting that I'm able to attend.
And this is somewhat of a historic occasion. Today at 4 p.m., the Kuna school district will be having a negotiations meeting with the Kuna teachers union at the district office at 711 E. Porter Road.
The reason this is somewhat historic is because open negotiation meetings is part of the recent education reform legislation passed by the state Legislature this year. Among many pieces and parts of this legislation, the open meetings clause jumped right out at me.
I think it will be interesting to see what goes on in these meetings and how a new contract is arrived at each year. Of course, the public is welcome to attend. See you there.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Kuna VFW memorial looks fantastic

Great job by Kuna VFW Post 7019, who placed this memorial at the Kuna city park ballfields last week. The 2,000-pound, 4-by-4-foot, 2-foot-thick stone memorial now stands between the two ballfields about 25 feet from Second Street. Plans for a veterans memorial at the ballfields were part of a grassroots redevelopment effort that fizzled last year. One of the elements of the plan was a large flagpole and veterans memorial as part of a brick-paved esplanade on the south end of the ballfields. With those plans dead, the local VFW post requested to place its memorial closer to Second Street.
I saw the drawings for the memorial a few weeks ago and thought it looked pretty impressive. But when I went out there last week to snap this photo of it, I was really impressed with how good it looked, especially in full color. Check it out if you get the chance. And thank you to our local VFW for making this happen.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

New scholarship in Kuna named in honor of Dustin Curtis

The family of Dustin Curtis, along with Kuna American Legion Baseball, is proud to announce the creation of a scholarship in his name. 2011 will be the first year this scholarship is offered with the hopes that it may continue and possibly expand in the future. The scholarship of $500 will be offered this year to a current graduating senior of Kuna High on the baseball team who is planning on continuing their education.
Applications and information can be found online at Anyone wishing to comment or contribute can contact representatives also at the website.
The 2011 deadline for applications will be April 20. The scholarship is meant to recognize young men who love the game of baseball and play with dignity and respect for their fellow teammates and competitors on and off the field, as Dustin exemplified.
Dustin was a standout baseball player at Kuna and was the starting catcher on the varsity team his junior year. His life was cut short by a car accident the summer after his junior year of high school.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Meridian Speedway season schedule in this week's Kuna Melba News

Once again this year, the Kuna Melba News is pleased to present our readers with the complete upcoming schedule at Meridian Speedway. Not only do a lot of Kuna residents head up to Meridian Speedway to check out the action, but we have several local racers who compete at Meridian each week. If you haven't seen it already, check it out, get a copy and keep it for another exciting season at Meridian Speedway. And check back each week with the Kuna Melba News, as we regularly report the results and stories from the previous week's action.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Kuna Melba News launches The Melba Herald

This week, the Kuna Melba News launched a new publication, The Melba Herald, a standalone section devoted entirely to the city of Melba. Back in the days of The Kuna Herald, the owners of that newspaper included a page or two of news about Melba. At the top of those pages, they put "The Melba Herald," to designate it as a separate section. At times, the paper would even swap out the front page of the paper for those copies delivered in Melba. For those copies, they would put The Melba Herald on the front.
Currently, The Melba Herald is a four-page black-and-white section inserted into every copy delivered to Melba subscribers and inserted into every over-the-counter copy sold at the Melba Valley Market.
Right now, we don't have any advertisers in the section. As you may know, it's the advertising that makes it possible to even produce a newspaper. We're hoping that once businesses in and around Melba see the section, they will want to advertise in it and we'll be able to grow it. Advertising rates are going to be pretty inexpensive, $100 for a full-page ad, $50 for a half-page ad, $30 for a quarter-page ad, $20 for an eighth-page ad.
For the time being, we plan on producing this section once a month. The next one will come out on May 4.
In the future, if advertiser support is there, we would like to add Melba City Council coverage, school board coverage, sports coverage.
If you are interested in advertising in The Melba Herald, call Nicola at 922-3008.
And as always, let us know what you think.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

College should be a goal for Kuna school district

Kuna school board members had an interesting discussion last month regarding long-term goals they have for the district. Unfortunately, they didn’t come to any solid conclusions or set any concrete goals.
What I see occurring is a clear-cut fork in the road: One leads toward increased professional-technical education in Kuna, and the other leads toward increased emphasis on post-secondary education.
Put more simply: Either train Kuna kids better to get a job right out of high school or push them to go on to college.
I’m not sure Kuna can do both, and I’m not sold on the idea that the Kuna school district should become a job-training center.
What I am sold on, though, is pushing more kids to go on to college.
I agree that not every student should go on to higher education. I also agree that there are many jobs out there that do not require a college degree. Can a student with just a high school diploma go out in the world and make a living? Of course. Can a graduate without a college degree become a success? Of course, but that seems to be the exception rather than the rule. And it’s only going to get harder for those without a college degree.
According to the J.A. and Kathryn Albertson Foundation, “Without education and training beyond high school, Idaho students will not qualify for two out of three new jobs, will earn about half that of college graduates, will vote less and need more welfare assistance.”
You could make the argument that, based on the number of new jobs requiring education beyond high school, about 67 percent of Kuna High School graduates should be going on to some form of post-secondary education in order to compete for those new jobs.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Come on over to the Kuna Melba News office tonight

The Kuna Melba News and Idaho Power are co-hosting “First Tuesday” for the Kuna Chamber of Commerce starting at 6 p.m. today, April 5, at the Kuna Melba News office, 326 Avenue D, downtown Kuna.
The public is invited to attend. Don’t miss the the “early bird” drawing, and other prizes, such as a half-page ad in the Kuna Melba News. Refreshments will be provided.
Kuna Melba News publisher Nicola McIntosh will be on hand as well as Idaho Power’s Melanie Willer, customer representative, Customer Relations & Energy Efficiency. Melanie’s territory includes all of Kuna.
Also attending will be Blake Watson, community relations representative, Customer Relations & Energy Efficiency for Idaho Power.
The Kuna Melba News is the leading provider of news and information for Kuna, Melba and the surrounding areas.
Idaho Power is committed and supportive to the communities it serves, by providing reliable, responsible, fair-priced energy services, today and tomorrow.
The event is a great opportunity to learn more about these businesses and network with other members of the business community in Kuna.
For information about First Tuesday, call the Chamber office at 922-9254, email or visit
The Kuna Chamber…making Kuna a great place to Live, Work and Thrive!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Kuna Chamber seeking businesses for business fair

The Kuna Chamber of Commerce once again will sponsor “Kuna: Celebrate What’s Great – A Business Buzz About” from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, June 4.
Folks, this was a great event last year, and I expect it to be a great event again this year.
The basic idea is this is a great way to inform our local residents about what businesses there are in Kuna. The Chamber is putting this together and footing the bill for much of the costs, such as mailing out a postcard to every household in the Kuna school district.
The Buzz About will be held at three locations: Paul’s Market Plaza (corner of Avalon and Kay streets), Marketplace Centre (corner of Main Street and Avenue C in downtown Kuna) and Deer Flat Crossing (corner of Deer Flat and Linder roads).
The Chamber is recruiting members and nonmembers to participate in this year’s event. Cost is $50 for members, $100 for nonmembers. All participants must also donate a prize valued at $25 or more.
If you are not already a Chamber member, now is a great time to join! When you join between now and June 4, you get to participate in the Business Fair for FREE. The cost of a year’s membership is just $150.
If you are interested in becoming a new member, or participating in the Business Fair, please contact Mary Anne Sugai in the Chamber office at 922-9254 or email

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Idaho FFA Foundation is raffling off a vintage tractor

I would love to win this tractor. Don't know where I'd put it....
The tractor recently visited the Kuna FFA program at Kuna High to help raise awareness of the raffle.
The Idaho FFA Foundation is conducting its first ever statewide Tractor Raffle to benefit Idaho FFA members. Tickets are now being sold for $10 each for a chance at winning a beautifully restored classic 1940 International Farmall H Tractor. The tractor stopped at Kuna High School and Melba High School on March 23 to help local FFA members promote raffle ticket sales. Tickets will be sold up until the drawing April 8 during the Idaho State FFA Leadership Conference in Twin Falls.
Canyon County farmer and Farm Bureau member Sid Freeman came up with the idea for the raffle to raise funds for the Idaho FFA Foundation and for scholarships for Idaho FFA students for post-secondary education. He and his wife Pam donated the tractor to begin the project and then he procured all of the donations for the restoration of the tractor, including new tires and a sprayer tank.
“It has been a dream of mine to do a project like this to help Idaho FFA members,” said Freeman, a former FFA member. “FFA has made such a difference in the lives of so many students and helped them go on to be strong leaders in our communities. I want to do my part to advance this outstanding organization and to help provide financial support to important FFA programs.”
“We have a goal of raising $50,000 with the raffle this year,” Freeman added. “Most of the funds raised will go toward scholarships and programs through the Idaho FFA Foundation that benefit students statewide, but the local FFA chapter designated on the winning ticket will also receive a portion of the ticket proceeds.”
“The success of this raffle will be determined by how many tickets the kids are able to get sold. Our hopes are that the citizens of Idaho can see how beneficial the FFA programs are for the communities of our state. And that they will see this effort as an opportunity for them to enhance their own communities.”
Tickets may be purchased from any local Idaho FFA chapter or from the Idaho FFA Foundation by calling 208-861-2467 or emailing your ticket request to until April 5.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Kuna Boys & Girls Club summer program is returning

Good news, Kuna: The Boys & Girls Club will be returning to Kuna this summer.
Luke has done the summer program for the past two years and loved it. It's a great service for Kuna. Thank you to the local committee members who are bringing this to Kuna.
Registration for the Kuna Boys and Girls Club summer program begins April 1. The Kuna Boys and Girls Club 2011 summer program will run from June 6 through August 5 at Reed Elementary School, 1670 N. Linder Road.
Participants will receive unique, age appropriate and exciting activities each day as well as free lunch and an afternoon snack. Registration is open to youth currently in kindergarten through 5th grade.
Registration fee is $25 (optional packages are available for additional fees). Regular club hours will be 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Friday. Online renewals begins April 1 at Member renewals (for those who registered for the previous school year or summer) begins April 1 from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. at any of the Boys and Girls Club locations:
• Garden City Club: Moseley Center, 610 E. 42nd St., Garden City, ID 83714; 321-9157.
• Meridian Club: 911 N. Meridian Road, Meridian, ID 83642; 888-5392.
• Kuna Club, 1670 N. Linder Road, Kuna, ID 83634; 639-3157
In addition to regular club membership, the following options are available:
• Field Trip Pack - $60; Spice up your Boys & Girls Club summer of fun by adding weekly field trips to exciting locations! Good for the whole summer!
• Early Risers - $250 ($225 for Kuna Club members); Extend your membership hours to 7 a.m. every weekday this summer! Breakfast is served at 8:30 a.m. Price includes special morning programs and activities. Receive 15 percent off Early Risers fee if paid in full or auto pay.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Kuna High science teacher earns prestigious fellowship

Congratulations to Kuna High science teacher DaNel Huggins, who has been selected for an Albert Einstein Distinguished Educator Fellowship.
I have always heard fantastic things about Mrs. Huggins from her students and their parents, so this should come as no surprise. We, as a community, should be very proud that she is receiving this fellowship.
Huggins was selected as one of 28 educators for this prestigious Fellowship after an intense national screening process.
Huggins will be serving her fellowship at the US Department of Energy, Office of Workforce Development. As an Einstein Fellow she will have an opportunity to attain new skills, knowledge and resources related to the national education issues she is exposed to, particularly those related to science, technology, engineering and math education. She will gain a working knowledge of educational policy, exposure to a network of education, and particularly STEM-related, experts, an increased awareness of the depth and variety of resources available through federal agencies, insight and experience into the grant writing and reviewing process, and to numerous resources and opportunities accessible to students and teachers.
She will have access to first-line discussions on education related to the President’s administrative agenda, Congressional initiatives and actions, and those of national organizations to move the needs of STEM education forward in this country.
“As a result of her immersion in this unique environment, she will serve as a valuable resource to your school and district while in Washington and also upon returning home in
2012,” according to a letter to the school district from Kathryn G. Culbertson, program manager for the Albert Einstein Distinguished Educator Fellowship Program. “You must be very proud of Ms. Huggins. Not only does DaNel have exceptional credentials as a teacher, she also made a lasting impression during the sponsor interviews in Washington, DC. Certainly she will be missed at home, but rest assured that this experience will provide myriad opportunities to contribute to local education issues and to grow professionally and personally.”

Dominos in Kuna under new ownership

The Dominos Pizza, at 1027 E. Kuna Road in Kuna, is under new ownership. A big welcome to new owners Chad and Shelby Bittner. I had the pleasure of meeting them when I took this photo for this week's issue of the Kuna Melba News. They seem like terrific additions to the Kuna community, and I look forward to them being a great success in Kuna.
The restaurant's phone number is 922-3399, and their hours are Sunday – Thursday 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., Friday – Saturday 11 a.m. to 12 a.m. The couple purchased the business in February.
Welcome to the Bittners!