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The Hammer, Vol. LVIII

Hooray for that Sportsplex fix, but let's dream bigger

By Ron Judd Executive Editor

Peering Inside: It’s nice to see the City of Bham following through on at least minimal repairs to keep the Sportsplex facility at the Civic Field complex in operation. Here in the land of dark and dank, indoor rec facilities are critical cures for winter sad/mad disease. More, not less, are in order.

Dare to Dream: And we know the budgets don’t line up. But imagine if our fair city had something right-sized, but as truly multipurpose as the Richmond Olympic Oval, right up the road from us. Maybe including a new civic pool.

Seriously, Check It Out Sometime: The former 2010 Olympics long track speedskating building, which has ice sheets, soccer fields, a sprawling fitness center, a running track, multisport courts and others under a single roof, is one of the better examples (low bar, we know) of a repurposed Oly venue for public use.

Road Trip Notion: It’s worth a trip to Richmond just to see the place in action — and maybe bring home some inspiration, if you’re a community organizer type.

Meanwhile, One Traffic Clog to the South: Actual headline at Hammer’s former home paper: “Seattle buses, trains to get detectors to study how fentanyl smoke moves.” You can’t blame the Emerald City for failing to contribute to scientific endeavors. 

Dark Enough to See the Stars: If something good comes your way this week, you can actually say the planets lined up in your favor. Because they have, at least from our vantage point here on the blue/brown ball. Mercury, Jupiter, Venus, Mars and Uranus are all lined up near the moon from where we sit this week. Check it out with binocs on the western horizon just after sunset, the star-gazers say. (See you at the dock.)

Planets Not Lining Up: Things look a bit more out of alignment for this proposed mondo gravel pit out by Paradise Valley. Here’s hoping the county gives this very big dig the sort of attention neighbors deserve. 

One More on That: Plenty of chops-licking likely already ensuing in the legal community over this one. 

This Just In: Reportedly big lines seen at the new Panera Bread carbohydrate outlet center up on Sunset. One of local life’s truly great mysteries.

You Can’t Make It Up, Part I: In Berks County, Pennsylvania, a farm exhibit planned to celebrate plant-based lifestyles had to cancel its signature attraction — “baby-goat snuggling” — at a vegan festival after complaints on (where else) Facebook by what the farm owner called “vegan extremists,” who called the practice exploitative, The Washington Post reported.

And Finally: Public drug use will likely become a crime in the ‘Ham after all. Up next: Argument about what, exactly, “public” means. 

The Hammer is swung on Wednesdays or whenever bailing duty calls. 

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