The year 2014 saw construction of a large-scale fish restoration project on Mill Creek, at Potter’s Ponds. This project will restore fish habitat that was destroyed in the 1940s, when Warm Springs Lumber Co. built two large log ponds on Mill Creek.
The reservation in 2014 again saw an active fire season, with lightning-caused wild fires breaking out at roughly the same time on opposite sides of the reservation.
The Warm Springs Canoe Family made the journey to Bella Bella, British Columbia. The family partnered this year with the Nisqually tribal canoe family.
Range and Ag continued a program that has removed thousands of unclaimed horses from the reservation. And Warm Springs received good news from the Federal Aviation Administration, approving the reservation as a test-site for unmanned aerial vehicles. Kah-Nee-Ta wrapped up a $1.5 million repair project, necessary due to a kitchen fire last year.
The big development in 2014, though, was the opening of the Warm Springs k-9 Eagle Academy.
This was the culmination of a dream that many residents have had for the past few decades.
Tribal members in 2013 approved a referendum allowing the Confederated Tribes to fund half of the $20 million project, with the school district funding the other half.
The construction took about a year to complete, and the academy opened in time for the start of the 2014-15 school year.
There are about 650 students at the Eagle Academy. Some details are still being worked out, especially the one-mile radius rule, requiring students within that area to walk to school, even though there are no sidewalks along the route.
But the new school is a welcome addition to the community. The academy features the latest computer technology, and dedicated teachers and staff.