As we look back, we are grateful that 2017 has been an exceptional year for LewisTalk. We have had the great priveledge of featuring many stories about the amazing people working to improve and uplift our community. We have learned about innovative new businesses, heart warming non-profits, remarkable individuals and much more.

We’ve compiled a list of our LewisTalk writers’ favorite stories from 2017 along with a little bit about why they found them so impactful. We hope you enjoy these highlights and that you will continue to visit for your positive local news in 2018. Thank you for making these stories and the community they represent a part of your daily lives.

Jessica Reeves-Rush

I love different stories for different reasons: maybe the story had a great response from readers, maybe I interviewed someone who was a delight to talk to or I learned some intriguing history I didn’t know before. But this year Hiking High Rock was my favorite. I love this story because it combines two of my passions, family and history. The story represents a truly lovely and unforgettable day spent with my family who accompanied me to the top. While on top of High Rock I could feel the history and when I set about researching it, found it to be more fascinating than I anticipated.

Nancy Keaton

My favorite story was very early on this year: Open Arms Shows Love for the Homeless. It’s the quintessential story of how people who care can make a difference. Chandra and Chris Shilley have sparked a movement in the community and their charity work has exploded over the past year. People want to help, they just needed a couple of champions to lead the way.

Sara Light Waller

Boy, that’s a toughie! There are several stories I wrote last year that I really like — Giovanny Garibay the young dancer, The Bearded Lunch Lady and Thomas and Colleen Gondolfi stand out especially. As for my favorite, I’ll go with Tom and Colleen’s story. Why? Because they’re such a contrasting pair, and yet so interesting, creative and wonderful that it was a joy getting to know them. Colleen has become a friend, someone who appreciates using and growing herbs as much as I do. I appreciate her experience and wisdom, and love sharing gardening adventures with her.

Grant Clark

Easily my favorite story from 2018 was on Coach Ron Brown, who was the head boys’ basketball coach at Centralia High School for 56 years. His long-time assistant coach Larry Mollersturn said we will likely never see that kind of longevity again – he’s probably right.

Gail Wood

Getting to share stories about teams and about players overcoming the challenge of a sport and the classroom is fun and satisfying. But sharing Darrin Canfield’s story about his fight against cancer and staying connected to the community was inspiring. His message was special. Also, I enjoyed sharing stories about Lyle Overbay, Jack State and Sabrina Stanley.

Kristina Lotz

My favorite story this year was the article on the restoration of the Jackson House. Because I live so close to it and drive by it a lot on the way to the park, I had always wondered about the old place. It was amazing to hear the rich history behind it and to learn more about the people who settled there decades ago. It’s wonderful to see our state care about the preservation of these places.

Greg Carlson

My favorite LewisTalk article from 2017 was my profile of A Simpler Past Homestead in Chehalis. Derek and June Noble’s vision of living off the land is inspiring, and their organic produce has been embraced by the Lewis County community at the Winlock Farmers Market and the annual Chehalis Garlic Festival.

LewisTalk aims to be your source for positive stories happening in Lewis County. If you have a suggestion for a post, send us a note at

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