Anna King

Richland Correspondent

Anna King, KPLU’s and N3’s Richland-based reporter, has been covering the Mid-Columbia since the spring of 2007. Before that she was a print reporter for the Tri-City Herald where she covered the environment, Native Americans, agriculture and Northwest wine. A Washington native, she's also a regular contributor to the magazine Wine Press Northwest and was a contributing author to the guide book Best Places to Kiss in the Northwest. Anna's memorable moment in public radio: "Being dusted from head-to-toe by a potato digger during harvest. Every square inch of me was covered in fine sand. Public radio is a dirty job!"


Northwest Wines
5:01 am
Mon February 17, 2014

Walla Walla Winemakers Go On Tour To Woo Urban Drinkers

FILE - In this photo taken Monday, April 27, 2009, assistant wine maker Bill Mansker adjust a barrel of a white blend wine at the L'Ecole No. 41 winery in Lowden, Wash., near Walla Walla, Wash.
Elaine Thompson AP Photo

Washington winemakers are hitting the road in an effort to court upwardly mobile city dwellers while they’re still developing their taste for wine. And they’re taking their show on the road in increasingly flashy style.

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10:59 am
Thu February 13, 2014

Veteran U.S. Rep. Doc Hastings To Retire; Who'll Be Tapped?

House Natural Resources Committee Chairman Rep. Doc Hastings, R-Wash., speaks during a joint hearing with the House Natural Resources Committee and the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee on Capitol Hill, Wednesday, Oct. 16, 2013.
Susan Walsh AP Photo

U.S. Rep. Doc Hastings will retire at the end of the year, he announced Thursday.

Political watchers are already speculating on who might run to replace the long-time representative. The district is considered strongly Republican, so a Democratic upset is unlikely.

Hastings served two decades as south-central Washington’s Republican congressman. 

“I turned 73 last Friday, and one more term, I would have been nearly 76, so I just thought this was the right time,” he said.

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4:47 pm
Wed February 12, 2014

Hikers Aim To Preserve The Tri-Cities' Dramatic Ridgelines

Sharon Grant heads down the ridge of Candy Mountain in the Tri-Cities, Wash. Badger Mountain can be seen in the distance.
Anna King Northwest News Network

Originally published on Thu February 13, 2014 9:30 am

The close proximity of a group of mountains known as The Rattles to the the Tri-Cities in southeast Washington, means urban dwellers can hike a 1,500 foot peak and enjoy dramatic views on their lunch break -- or even after supper.

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Cougar Wine
10:42 am
Thu February 6, 2014

Second Release Of WSU's Student-Made Wine Hitting Store Shelves This Week

Amos Morgan Washington State University

Washington State University’s viticulture and enology’s facility won’t open in the Tri-Cities until next spring, but students aren’t waiting to bottle and sell their own wines.

And, with the help of local winemakers, they’ve already sold out of their first release.

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Growth & Development
4:09 pm
Wed January 29, 2014

Tri-Cities Boost: New Energy Laboratory, Growing Environmental Cleanup

A new 22,000-square-foot energy research lab will break ground in the spring. It’s part of the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Richland.
Courtesy of Meier Architecture Engineering

Southeast Washington is getting an economic boost. Two announcements made Wednesday are expected to lead to new jobs in the area. 

The Pacific Northwest National Laboratory is building a $10 million facility in north Richland, near the rest of the lab’s campus. The facility will house research on the power grid's reliability, renewable energy and greater energy efficiency in buildings.

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Hanford Nuclear Reservation
1:59 pm
Mon January 27, 2014

Wash. State Slaps Fine For Mishandled Waste At Hanford

File image
AP Photo


Over the last several years, Hanford Nuclear Reservation managers have mishandled barrels and boxes of hazardous and radioactive waste in the central part of the southeast Washington site.

The state of Washington last Friday slapped the U.S. Department of Energy with a $15,000 fine.

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Hanford Nuclear Reservation
5:07 pm
Thu January 23, 2014

Hanford Lays Off The Layoffs, Keeps 300 Workers After Congress Approves Budget

File image
AP Photo

About 300 workers who were told they'd be laid off can now keep their jobs at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation. 

Because Congress approved the 2014 federal budget for 2014 last week, layoffs announced last year can be avoided.

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Hanford Nuclear Reservation
7:01 pm
Tue January 14, 2014

Hanford Contractor Fails To Check Radioactive Tanks For Months

File image
Ted S. Warren AP Photo

A federal contractor at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation failed to check some single-shell radioactive waste tanks for the buildup of hydrogen gas. It was an eight-month lapse that could have been dangerous for workers and the public.

Federal contractor Washington River Protection Solutions says some of the radioactive waste tanks should have been checked as far back as last March, and weren’t. The overdue tanks were checked in late December, and no gas buildups were found.

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Legal Marijuana
5:01 am
Tue January 14, 2014

Yakama Tribes Take Pot Stand On Traditional Lands

File image
AP Photo

Leaders of the Yakama Nation in central Washington say they see little benefit to sales or farming of legalized marijuana on their traditional lands. And the tribes are making moves to prevent anyone from operating a pot business on an area that adds up to one-fifth of the state’s land mass.

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Stuff of Legends
7:01 pm
Thu January 9, 2014

Sasquatch-Hunting Reality Show Filmed In Northwest Premiers This Week

Courtesy of Spike TV.

A new cable reality show features rugged Northwesterners tromping through the region’s beautiful landscapes in search of Sasquatch.

Spike TV threw together big-game hunters, dedicated Big Foot aficionados called “squatchers” and animal-loving pro photographers. The new eight-week reality show on SpikeTV is called “10 Million Dollar Big Foot Bounty,” and comes, as the name suggests, with a $10 million prize. It premiers Friday.

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Liquor Laws
10:56 am
Tue January 7, 2014

Wash. Liquor Privatization Leaves Northwest Craft Distilleries Hungover

Courtesy of Dry Fly Distilling in Spokane, Washington.

A Hood River distillery has the top-selling brand of liquor, according to sales numbers released by the state of Oregon. But other craft distillers say those hot numbers don’t reflect their experience.

Before liquor sales were privatized in Washington state in mid-2012, small local distilleries were featured in state-owned shops there and throughout the Northwest. Now, top craft distillers say national brands are hogging the shelf space in Washington, the biggest market in the region.

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Washington Wheat
1:32 pm
Mon January 6, 2014

Investors, Farmers May Return To Grain West Of The Cascades

Courtesy of Brook Brouwer with Washington State University.

When you think of Northwest wheat, you might picture the rolling golden fields of eastern Washington. But it used to be that a lot of grain was grown west of the Cascades, and it may soon grow here again.

Investors, policy makers and farmers are leading an effort to bring grain back to western Washington, Oregon and British Columbia.

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Three Kings Day
9:22 am
Mon January 6, 2014

Northwest Mexican-American Bakeries Ready For Three Kings Day

Alejandro Vacscez, 22, has been baking since he was 11 years old. He says the bakery will make close to 1,000 of these traditional breads for Three Kings Day will be busy at Viera’s Bakery in Pasco, Wash.
Anna King

Monday is a big day for Mexican-American bakeries across the Northwest. It’s Three Kings Day or the Epiphany, a Christian celebration of the day the magi came bearing gifts for Jesus. 

At Viera’s Bakery in Pasco, workers were hustling in preparation for a traditionally busy day.

“I think it’s one of the main days of all year that we sell a lot of bread,” said Alejandro Vacscez, who works at the bakery.

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Spirit of the Season
5:01 am
Mon December 23, 2013

Massive Nativity Collection Represents More Than Just The Christmas Story

Neil Allen, the interim pastor at Northwest United Protestant Church in Richland, holds one of his most prized crèche, a wood carving from Ecuador.
Anna King

‘Tis the season for the drone of cheery Christmas music. You’re even bombarded with it at the gym. It’s easy to get stressed out or even blue during the holidays. But at a small Presbyterian church in Richland, one pastor has been trying to spread a little solace with an unusual exhibit.

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Doing The Math
12:00 pm
Fri December 20, 2013

Do Costs Of Northwest Nuke Plant Pencil Out? Depends Who You Ask

Nuclear Regulatory Commission

There’s a new debate raging over the Northwest’s only commercial nuclear power plant. It’s not about safety or how to dispose of nuclear waste, but about dollars and cents.

A new report asks whether the Columbia Generating Station pencils out for the region. But the facility’s owners are fighting back with their own numbers.

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