My Kind of Town

To some folks Colfax may seem like a speed trap, heck I have even had three tickets here myself and I still live here. Point is, they don't discriminate to whom they give tickets.

One must consider that Colfax's Main Street is Highway 195 and that we do have a city police department, Whitman County Sheriff's Detachment and, of course the Washington State Patrol stationed here, too. Our emergency service and fire departments are eve ready and staffed by hardworking volunteers. Because Main Street is exactly that, with businesses, homes, crossings with little red flags and three stop lights, it is a busy place. We are thankful that we did not get x'd out when the redo of the St. Highway 195 came into being. This happened to Spangle, Plaza and Rosalia and they became a turnoff. Money was the deciding factor in keeping Colfax as is. Just htink what a bridge over our city would have cost back in the day... astronomical, so some good folks said, "Let's let it be."

Mayor Vanek, Mr. Steve Warwick, Ross Swan and Gary Behymer are good friends of mine and they truly represent the best of our community. Let's dig a little deeper; yes, we do well with high school athletics, jazz band, music and the annual musical - which the whole town turns out for, but did you know we have the FCCLA (Family, Career and Community Leaders of America) which is nationally recognized, as well as the FFA with national leaders, the Boy Scouts, 4H, Problem Solvers, Whitman County Rodeo, Thrift Grandmothers and certainly many church affiliations as well. We even have a Ukulele band. We have a comprehensive newspaper, the Whitman County Gazette, and for many years we even had our own radio station, KCLX, which always broadcast the football and basketball games. Whitman County Library is well-stocked and utilized with a very helpful staff. Colfax is the number-one small town in the region for contributing to the Union Gospel Mission in Spokane, both in money and volunteer help. Many early season golfers take advantage of the arrival of early spring weather to play on our mature and very well kept course. In October of 2016, our golf course was the venue for the PAC-12 cross country meet. McDonald Park, our national-award-winning softball/baseball complex, is the site for American Legion, high school and junior league games.

Our young people have done well in schools, colleges and universities across the country. We have about an eighty-five-per-cent high school to college transition rate which is equally reflected by our neighbor communities also. Some of our young men and women serve honorably in the military and have distinguished themselves. By the way, Robert Osborne of Turner Classic Movies graduated from Colfax High School, as well as John Crawford and Yakima Canutt.

When one drives through this incredible part of the earth, you experience a constantly changing landscape with the seasons. Green for spring and early summer to gold in the fall and mottled hillsides in the winter, year in and year out it changes but stays the same too, which proves the constancy of our country. Our little towns and villages all have wonderful parks and green spaces to rest and some of the best county parks in north America with Kamiak, the jewel of the Palouse, Klemgard Park, wrapped wonderfully in the surrounding farmland and Wawawai on the Snake River with great camping and river cruising.

The good people of the Palouse have seen fit to build a beautiful, very functional and well equipped hospital staffed with caring professionals in the medical, dental, and eyecare fields.

I would urge anyone to stop for a while in our community and discover for themselves this "Speed Trap" of the Palouse.

- Jack McBride, Colfax. Letter to the editor, Whitman Gazette Fall of 2017