Spring is sprung, as is columnist Schram

Call this a spring cleaning of column items:

Call this a spring cleaning of column items:

• As he explains today in his swan song, Ken Schram, who has written for the Reporter since January 2007, is giving up his column in order to devote more time to his work as a radio and television commentator. His time as a columnist “was too short, long on sweet and lots of fun,” he said. “I genuinely appreciate the opportunity over the past year. It was nice to have some breathing space that allowed for more depth and perspective than what I’m accustomed to with my on-air commentaries.”

His replacement on our Opinion page? I’d like to hear your suggestions.

• I’m biased. As the father of a former Girl Scout who sat with her in front of grocery stores while she and her troopmates sold cookies, any newspaper I’m a part of will always promote the sales. So I’m happy that Jill Seiver, a service unit manager for Girl Scouts in Covington, “was so jazzed” by the Reporter’s coverage of the annual cookie sale that makes the female version of Scouting synonymous with sweet tooths.

“Our cookie sales exceeded last year’s by more than 15 percent, in large part due to the great publicity that you gave us,” she said.

It was our pleasure. But knowing from personal experience how much organizing and effort goes into selling the cookies, the real credit for that success goes to the girls, their parents and adult leaders (and the cookie buyers, of course).

• Pat Cashman, consistently one of the Reporter’s most popular columnists (and I’m not jealous), stepped off the printed page and behind the podium as the featured speaker at Maple Valley Community Center’s annual fund-raising breakfast March 27. The organizers graciously invited me to attend, and I’d have been there if not for a traffic snarl that kept me from reaching the location and hearing Cashman’s self-effacing brand of humor.

“The event went very well. I kept looking behind me, sure the audience was listening to someone else,” he said.

• Good economic news, perhaps? Kohl’s, which has one of its department stores in Covington, opened a new one last week in Centerville, Utah – one of 28 new openings planned for 2008 that will raise the chain’s store count to 1,000, Kohl’s officials said.

Editor Pat Jenkins can be reached at (425) 432-1209 and pjenkins@reporternewspapers.com