Welcome to Friday Harbor Now!
Hi! Welcome to Friday Harbor Now! Events posted on this page are archived as soon as they are over, so there is room for current events and news. If you missed something, you can find it on our Archived News/Events page. And for even more information and photos you can follow us on Facebook, we are on there as FRIDAY HARBOR. Thanks for visiting, and have a great day!
Salish Communities Roundtable and Potluck
Press Release: Thursday, March 13th at Brickworks 150 Nichols St. Are you concerned about inappropriate government and military encroachment? So are a lot of other people all around the area! Citizens for the Core is hosting a long-awaited North Sound communities round table and potluck to discuss ways we can and are striving to hold the government and military accountable.
4-5pm there will be an informal meeting and film showing of "Ebey's Reserve Video" by renowned Mark Dworkin. 5-7pm Roundtable and potluck. Groups attending: Whidbey Noise Coalition (WNC) - regional/ Whidbey Island. Citizens of Ebey's Reserve (COER) - central Whidbey Island. Concerned Island Citizens (CIC) - north Whidbey Island. Citizens for the Core - San Juan Islands. Contact: email@example.com. More here...
Rising From Ashes at SSIS
Press Release from SSIS: Tuesday, March 11, 2014 @ 7pm at Spring Street International School, 505 Spring Street. Admission is free! Rising From Ashes, a spellbinding documentary narrated by Forest Whitaker about the first-ever Rwandan national cycling team in their bid to make history and represent their country at the 2012 Olympics. Competing in a white man's sport often reserved for the privileged, a rag tag group of cyclists coached by the first American to ride in the Tour de France are transformed into a powerful symbol of hope for a country recovering from one of the world's most devastating genocides. Run time 82 min. (Summary from imdb.com.)
Sponsored by Spring Street International School and XYZ Studio. Come early for snacks and a good seat -- space is limited to 40 seats; movie will start promptly at 7pm. Donations encouraged to bring more high-achieving students from the Gashora Girls Academy of Science and Technology in Rwanda--and join Zula, who began at Spring Street just this January.
San Juan Island Trails Committee Annual Spring Potluck
The San Juan Island Trails Committee's annual spring potluck will be Wednesday, March 12, 5:30 - 7:30, at the San Juan Island Grange Hall #966 at 152 First St. N. Friday Harbor. Please join the festivities. Bring your own table service, a dish to share, and your beverage of choice. The speaker will be Karen Vedder, who recently biked England and Scotland end to end with her husband and another couple. No reservations needed!
San Juan Island Trails Committee, a committee of Island Rec Facilitating and participating actively in the creation, maintenance, and use of a network of trails for non-motorized use on San Juan Island. firstname.lastname@example.org More here...
Vandalism Spree in Friday Harbor - Reward Offered for Info
Town of Friday Harbor Press Release: With the assistance of local businesses and citizens, the Town of Friday Harbor announces the creation of a Reward Fund for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for the extensive property damage within the Town on Saturday or Sunday on the weekend of March 1st. At the time of this release the Town has received Reward contributions totaling in excess of $2,000 earmarked for the individual(s) providing the information needed to solve this case.
The Sheriff has described the damage to be “a spree of senseless vandalism” that occurred late Saturday or early Sunday night. Targets included the Elementary School, Head Start, the pre-school at the Presbyterian Church, Kingdom Hall and the Homes for Islanders project. Much of the damage was done with spray paint and 11 tires were slashed. Elementary school personnel report that the tether balls were cut down and one was burned. If you have information regarding this case please contact the Sheriff’s office at 360-378-4151. Continued here...
Tuesday Night Films at the Grange
Every other Tuesday Night through the Spring the Friday Harbor Film Festival will be showing a selection of the films from their 2013 festival at the San Juan Island Grange located at 152 N. First Street. Admission is by donation. Keep up-to-date about year-round events and plans for the 2014 FHFF through Facebook, Twitter or newsletter. Or stop by their Office & Hospitality Center at 10 First Street, Friday Harbor. More here...
|3/18/14||Black Wave (Running time: 82min) (25th Anniversary of the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill)||7pm|
|4/1/14||Eastern Rises (Running time: 48min) Red Gold (Running time: 54min)||7pm|
|4/15/14||Back to the Garden (Running time: 48min) Tiny (Running time: 54min)||7pm|
|5/6/14||Keiko, The Untold Story of the Star of Free Willy (Running time: 75min)||7pm|
|5/20/14||Good Food (Running time: 73min)||7pm|
Marina Success Linked to Island Economy
Press Release from t Port of Friday Harbor: The Port of Friday Harbor offers guest marina customers a promotion intended to increase the number of returning boaters to Friday Harbor. If a customer pays for four nights of moorage, they will receive a fifth night free, similar to a coffee punch card. Visitors can use their free boat nights from September through June encouraging boaters to visit Friday Harbor during the shoulder season.
In 2013 the success of this promotion was substantial—the Port issued 367 free nights of moorage. According to professional survey consultants, the average boater spends between $100 to $200 each day at local establishments. During the slow season when boaters redeem their free night of moorage this results in $36,700 to $73,400 of revenue to the island economy. Commissioner Barbara Marrett stated “The Port’s mission is economic development and this is something the Port does for the Town.” 2014 will be the fourth consecutive year the Port will offer this popular boater promotion. Continued here...
St. Patrick's Day Party with The Ian McFeron Band
St. Patrick's Day Party with The Ian McFeron has shared the spotlight with international and national artists and is prolific songwriter whose lyrical prose and fervent work ethic has drawn comparison to Bob Dylan and Ryan Adams. He has released a steady stream of albums since 2003. For more info or to make reservations call The Rumor Mill at 378-5555. More on The Music Scene...
Waterfront History Presentation and Pie Potluck
On Thursday, March 20th, 2014 the Port of Friday Harbor will host a Waterfront History presentation with local architectural historian Boyd Pratt. Old photographs and maps will be shown to explain the development of the Friday Harbor Waterfront. The presentation will begin at 7pm at the San Juan Island Grange. Hot beverages plus homemade cookies will be provided and we encourage everyone to bring a favorite pie to share!
Master Gardeners’ Annual Native Plant Sale – Order deadline extended to March 21st
Press Release: There is still time to order native plants from the San Juan County Master Gardener/Conservation District Native Plant Sale! The sale is scheduled for March 29th, from 9 AM – 12 noon, on San Juan (Fairgrounds), Lopez (Sunshine Builders) and Orcas Islands (The Grange). Plants native to the Pacific Northwest are beautiful in the garden and landscape, are beneficial for wildlife, and improve habitat and plant diversity. Pacific Crabapple, Aspen, Douglas Maple, Garry oak, ferns, and evergreen huckleberry are just some of trees and plants to consider.
Some species may already be sold out, please call WSU Extension for more information. Quantities are limited, so order now! The deadline for orders has been extended to March 21st. A limited number of plants may be available on the day of the sale. For more information and the entire list of plants and to print an order form, go to http://sanjuan.wsu.edu or call WSU Extension at 378-4414 for information and order forms. More here...
Help Needed for the Ferries
Update: The Senate passed SHB1129 on Friday, March 7th. This is the bill that funds building the third 144-car ferry. The vote count was 41 yeas, 8 nays.
03/05/14 Press Release from Friday Harbor Mayor, Carrie Lacher: I wanted to share with you the text of a letter I recently emailed to several State senators regarding ferry funding. The legislative session will be ending soon and funding for ferries is critical! I emailed the senators listed at the bottom of this email with the letter below. I encourage everyone who is interested in the vitality and sustainability of our Town and community to also contact these and other State senators and encourage them to supportin order to help fund our marine highway. Thanks, Carrie Lacher, Mayor
Dear Senator: As Mayor of a ferry-dependent community, I am asking for your support of SHB1129. The economy of Friday Harbor, San Juan Island depends on reliable ferries for tourism, laborers, students, and the very necessities of life.The San Juan Islands are among the top 3 State tourism draws and therefore a top tax source. We’re currently experiencing our 4th week of ferry breakdown disruptions. In January, we had two of the four boats that serve the San Juan Islands out of service at the same time. In order to continue to draw visitors, we need appropriate funding to ensure reliable service and clean, dependable boats. Continued here...
FAA Mandated Airport Tree Management
Press Release from t Port of Friday Harbor: Friday Harbor residents may notice some limited tree removal operations on or near the airport over the next couple of weeks. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) requires that any objects including trees, buildings, antennas, etc. that penetrate “approach surfaces” must be lighted, marked or removed. In a recent safety inspection certain trees were identified as obstructions in the approach surfaces on and around airport property.
This will be the first phase of a comprehensive approach to topping and removing trees that penetrate approach surfaces and will help keep our airport safe and in compliance with federal aviation regulations. The Port of Friday Harbor prides itself on trying to be environmentally friendly and will only take down or top those trees necessary to the safe operation of the airport. Continued here...
Senior vs Staff Basketball Night
Press Release: The annual Senior vs Staff basketball game will be held Friday, March 21st. in Turnbull Gym. Prior to the game a dinner fundraiser will be served at 4:30pm. The cost is $7.00 and includes hamburger or hot dog, salad, chips and a drink. Game time is at 6:00pm and will include games for prizes as well half time entertainment.
There is no admission charge for the game but donations are greatly appreciated. All donations support the Senior 2014 Graduation Night. Grad night is an all-night event of top secret fun planned by parents, supported by the Prevention Coalition and enjoyed by our Senior class for their final time together.
Please come out and support our kids and have a great night of food, fun and games. Mark your calendars, bring your family and join us for the fun! More here...
CenturyLink Working to Provide Network Redundancy
Press Release from CenturyLink: CenturyLink, Inc. (NYSE: CTL), as part of its ongoing commitment to its customers in San Juan County, is actively working to provide network redundancy. This redundancy will allow voice, Internet, E911 and other critical services to be rerouted onto other facilities to maintain service in the event of a fiber cut within the Islands.
During the week of Feb. 17, CenturyLink began phase one of providing redundancy from Friday Harbor to East Sound and Lopez Island. CenturyLink is increasing the capacity on the existing fiber optic network between Mount Constitution and East Sound to support the new microwave radio system that will be installed from Friday Harbor to Mount Constitution.
“CenturyLink is focused on our customers’ safety and service reliability in San Juan County,” said Tim Grigar, CenturyLink vice president and general manager for western Washington. Continued here...
Calling All Artists!
San Juan Island National Historical Park is hosting a community art contest with entries due April 1-11, 2014. Get started on yours today! The theme this year is Wildflowers and Pollinators of the San Juan Islands. Entries may be of any medium but must follow the size guide: 2-D size 8"x10" or 11"x14" only, portrait or landscape in orientation. 3-D size between 4" and 18" square.
Community Arts in the Park is a competition that celebrates ecology through art! Through this program community members have the opportunity to raise awareness of the San Juan Islands' natural diversity. Works will inspire community connections to local ecology and outdoor stewardship. Contest Details: Art Contest Brochure and Entry FormCommunity Arts in the Park is part of San Juan Island National Historical Park's first ever BioBlitz, May 3-4, 2014, a special event that celebrates the area's amazing ecology. Continued here...
MV Chelan to the Rescue in the San Juan Islands
Press Release: WSDOT has been working day and night to determine the cause of Sealth’s recent mechanical issues since the vessel was removed from service on Feb. 12. Underwater video and sea trials suggest the problem could be with the rudder system beneath the vessel, requiring us to move the vessel to dry dock for further investigation. On Monday, the Sealth will be lifted out of the water and onto dry dock at Dakota Creek Industries in Anacortes for investigation and necessary repairs.
The 87-car Evergreen State is temporarily replacing the 90-car Sealth, and the 34-car Hiyu is serving the interisland route. We are in the process of moving other boats within the system and anticipate that the San Juan Islands/Anacortes route will be back to full service on Wednesday, March 5. At that time, the 124-car Chelan will be operating on domestic routes and the Evergreen State will be returning to the interisland route. More here...
Annual St. Patricks Day Dinner to Fund Soroptimist Projects
Press Release: Soroptimist International of Friday Harbor will hold their 16th annual St. Patrick’s Day Extravaganza, on March 15 at the Mullis Center. The group's largest annual fundraiser supports the work Soroptimists do to improve the lives of women and girls in the community. The festivities begin at 5 PM with dinner at 6 PM and include an irresistible dessert auction, a bonny live auction and basket raffles. Dinner will be a traditional corned beef and cabbage feast or vegetarian pasta entrée provided by Vinny’s Ristorante. Irish songs by the Island Chordsmen Plus will entertain the festive crowd.
Topping the evening will be the drawing for a week at an ocean-front Kaua`i condo. Transportation to and from SEA-TAC will be provided by Classic Cab and Bellair Shuttle. Only 100 $50 tickets will be sold making chances to win excellent! Tickets will be available at Kings and the Marketplace along with those for a raffle for gift baskets. Extravaganza tickets are $30 for adults, $15 for children 10 and under. Take-out dinners will be available for $12. Tickets can be purchased at The Toy Box and Spa d’Bune or from any Soroptimist. Continued here...
San Juan Island Library Launches Mobile App
Press Release: One click access to library information from any internet-capable phone or device. Want to renew a book or place one on hold? We have an app for that. Library hours or locations? We have an app for that. Download an eBook? Find information fast? We have an app for that, too.
The San Juan Island Library has recently launched Library Now, a mobile app to put the library at your fingertips. From any mobile phone or tablet connected to the internet you can instantly tap into library resources, anytime, anywhere. You can search the library catalog, check your account, ask a question, find events, and more.
San Juan County Recognizes 25th Anniversary of the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill
Press Release from San Juans Alliance: On March 24th, 1989, the Exxon Valdez (a 984’ long tanker) struck a reef in Prince William Sound, spilling more than 11 million gallons (about 17 Olympic-sized swimming pools) of crude oil. Despite containment efforts, the oil coated 1,300 miles of coastline (over 3 times of all combined coastlines in San Juan County), and covered an area about 25 times the area of SJC waters. 25 years later, an estimated 20,000 gallons of Valdez crude oil is still in Alaska’s sand and soil. The tragic ripples of ecological and economic devastation are still being felt today; several marine species and commercial fishing are still recovering or have yet to recover from the spill.
ATTEND A LECTURE. Our Islands at Risk: Increased Vessel Traffic and Increased Risk of a Major Oil Spill. Learn about what would happen in the event of a major oil spill. Gary Shigenaka, a marine biologist for NOAA, who specializes in marine life studies during oil spills, will talk about how various cargo and propulsion oils would likely behave if spilled in our marine environment. Julie Knight, Executive Director of Islands Oil Spill Association (IOSA), will talk about local spill response preparedness.
Lopez Island: Friday, March 14, 7:00-8:30 pm at Lopez Center
Orcas Island: Saturday, March 15, 12:30-2:30 pm at Orcas Episcopal Church
San Juan Island: Sunday, March 16, 12:30-2:30 pm at the San Juan Island Grange. Continued here...
What’s Happening with the Sealth?
Press Release from Jim Corenman, Chair, San Juan County FAC: Most of us in the islands are concerned about the ongoing problems with the Sealth, one of our three mainland ferries, which is undergoing lengthy repairs in Anacortes. Understandably, cancellations and late sailings have given rise to a great deal of frustration. There is a tendency to blame Washington State Ferries for not solving the problems quicker, or at least providing another boat that could substitute for the Sealth in the meantime.
Each time Washington State Ferries visits the islands for their semiannual public meetings, we’ve heard David Moseley (Assistant Secretary and head of ferries) repeat the concern that ferries is not financially sustainable. What we may not have understood, until now, is that he was talking about exactly the situation we find ourselves in, with one boat out of service and no adequate replacements available. Continued here...
Climb For The Cure
Press Release: Once again, the firefighters of San Juan Island Fire Rescue will participate in the Scott Firefighter Stair Climb on Sunday, March 9, 2014 in support of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (LLS). Firefighters Michael Henderson and Mark Wagner will participate in the climb. Ronald and Bonnie Stanger and Carolyn Hudson will serve as support volunteers.
What is the Scott Firefighter Stair Climb? The Scott Firefighter Stair Climb is a timed race up the stairs at the Columbia Center in downtown Seattle. The participants wear full fire gear and a self-contained breathing apparatus, which totals around 65 lbs! Although this is a challenging event, it pales in comparison to the challenges of blood cancer patients.
All proceeds will benefit the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society which is the world's largest voluntary health organization dedicated to funding blood cancer research, education and patient services. Continued here...
Port of Friday Harbor Final Schematic Design
The Port Commission invites the public to share opinions on the proposed Friday Harbor waterfront design before it's too late. The waterfront is the front door to our island and the community needs every opportunity to have a say in its design. Please use the comment form http://www.portfridayharbor.
Refer to the"Waterfront Planning and Design" document http://www.portfridayharbor.
New San Juan Islands Video Cruising Guide
Local liveaboard cruisers Darren and Lisa O’Brien have created a new series of video cruising guides showcasing the Washington Marine State Parks in the San Juan Islands.
Washington State Parks Cruising Guide DVD Vol. 1 – San Juan Islands contains over 90 minutes of footage, detailing the approaches to each park, amenities and facilities, hiking trails, and more. The video format allows for a far more immersive experience than is possible in a traditional cruising guide. The videos are well done, thoroughly researched, and fun to watch. Below is Darren and Lisa’s take on Blind Island State Park. Continued here...
Western Region Awards for Friday Harbor High School Artists
Press Release: San Juan Island’s Friday Harbor High School Art Instructor Andy Anderson is very proud to announce that two Friday Harbor High School AP Studio Art students have won the highest recognition in the 2014 Western at Large Regional Scholastic Art & Writing Awards Competition. The Western Region includes California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, Washington and Wyoming. The award winning portfolios were submitted by seniors Ellery Von Dassow and Alaina Scheffer. Friday Harbor High School was awarded two “Gold Key” portfolios out of only five selected from the Western Region.
According to its website, since 1923, The Alliance for Young Artists & Writers has identified teenagers with exceptional artistic and literary talent to bring their work to a national audience. In the last five years alone, students submitted nearly 900,000 original works of art and writing and only a small percentage of these receive the designation of “Gold Key”, “Silver Key”, or “Honorable Mention”. Continued here...
San Juan County CenturyLink Customers to Receive CreditsPress Release from Centurylink: As a customer-focused company, CenturyLink has issued bill credits to impacted customers on the islands. Unfortunately, in order to ensure that each customer received the proper credits, it took a little longer to process the credits than we would have liked. Our customers will see the proper credits on their February bills. More here...
Ranker Highlights Connection Between Outdoor Recreation and a Strong Economy
Press Release: Sen. Kevin Ranker, D-Orcas Island, joined Gov. Jay Inslee on Thursday, Feb 13th for the governor’s announcement of an initiative to promote the outdoor recreation and tourism sectors in Washington State. During his introduction of the governor Ranker said, “I am excited to see the governor launch this effort to highlight the important role outdoor recreation plays in our state’s economy. It is critical that we protect our great outdoors and natural resources and the jobs that depend upon them.”
Ranker and Inslee joined a group of businesses, non-profit groups and public agencies in Olympia to discuss the initiative with the The Big Tent Outdoor Coalition, a collection of three dozen Washington for-profit, non-profit and government organizations. A recent study concluded that $22.5 billion is spent annually in Washington on outdoor recreation, supporting 227,600 jobs and generating $1.6 billion in state and local tax revenue.
Island Rec's 3nd Annual Table Tennis Tournament
: Attention all Ping Pong Players! Join Island Rec for their third annual table tennis tournament. The tournament will be held in Turnbull Gym, March 16th starting at 11am. The early registration fee is $23.00 until March 6th , $28.00 thereafter. Prizes will be awarded to top table finishers. Must be 16 or older to play. For more information call 378-4953, visit our website at www.islandrec.org, or stop by the office at 580 Guard St. Open Monday – Friday 1-5pm. More here...
Murray, Cantwell, Larsen Call on CSB to Hold Public Meeting about Anacortes-Tesoro Refinery Explosion
Press Release: On Feb 10, 2014 in a letter to Chairman of the U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB), Rafael Moure-Eraso, U.S. Senators Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell and U.S. Rep. Rick Larsen urged CSB to schedule a meeting in Anacortes for the public to have a chance to give feedback on an initial report on the Anacortes-Tesoro refinery explosion, which killed 7 people nearly 4 years ago. Sens. Murray and Cantwell and Rep. Larsen expressed their continued disappointment in delays throughout the investigation, as well as their hope that CSB will be fully engaged with Anacortes as they complete this process. The release of the initial report began a 45 day public comment period, after which the CSB will vote to approve the report. The full text of the letter:
Dear Chairman Moure-Eraso: Now that the Chemical Safety Board has released its long-overdue draft findings on the Tesoro refinery explosion in Anacortes, we ask that you remain fully engaged with our constituents to complete this process. The Anacortes community deserves to have its input considered in an actionable report from your agency, in full view of the public. Continued here...
Meet Your Volunteer Firefighter - Lenora Johnson
Press Release: Lenora is a Senior at Spring Street School! She is taking several Advanced Placement core classes and American Sign Language in the afternoon two days a week. Her Senior project was to make sure that Spring Street had an updated fire safety plan and that all the 5th/6th graders and staff can operate fire extinguishers. Lenora was involved in Fire Safety at Friday Harbor Elementary school, the Safety Fair, and participated in the San Juan Island Every 15 Minutes presentation which is a national program educating students about the dangers of drinking and driving.
Lenora is what the fire department calls a Cadet. She has undergone all the training and testing it takes to be a firefighter at the local level, but has to wait to take the National exam this summer after she graduates. Why, might you ask, would a young girl go into firefighting? She has been in the community for about 10 years and felt that she wanted to give something back. Continued here...
Roche Harbor's 11th Annual Salmon Classic Invitational
Here is the final Leader Board of the 2014 Salmon Classic Derby. Andrew Holman was the big winner with a 20lb. 2oz. fish (pictured). More here...
Derelict Fishing Gear Removal Success Story
From The SeaDoc Society: On Tuesday, February 11, Joan Drinkwin of the Northwest Straits Foundation is coming to Orcas to talk about how the local effort to remove lost fishing nets and crabbing gear has strengthened our local economy and helped recover marine wildlife populations. Over the last decade, the Northwest Straits Initiative has removed 4,605 nets from shallow waters in the Salish Sea, saving the lives of more than 3.5 million marine animals that would have otherwise been entrapped and killed by these nets each year.
And guess what, it's cost-effective. A joint Northwest Straits - SeaDoc Society study revealed that while removing a net cost $1,358, every net removed saves $1,965 each year in Dungeness crab alone, not to mention the salmon, lingcod, birds, and mammals that would have been killed by that net. Continued here...
Seahawks Championship Parade Video
Check out this Awesome video made by Seattle filmmaker Ryan Cory of the Seahawks Championship Parade that took place on Wednesday, Feb. 5th. The Parade drew a crowd of more than 700,000! Ryan made this video is a "thank you" for the incredible efforts of the Seahawks and the City Of Seattle for an unforgettable day.
Superintendent Update on STEM Building Renovation
Press Release: Last summer the Washington State legislature granted the San Juan Island School District a $1 million dollar capital gift to renovate the vocational/technology building behind Friday Harbor High School. Since July a design team made up of district staff, the project manager, and community members have met weekly to creatively maximize the use of the space. The building will include a newly renovated look, updated electrical and mechanical systems, and fresh classrooms and work spaces.We expect to widely advertise the renovation project for qualified contractors in March. The successful contractor will be chosen from a competitive pool of qualified firms who will examine the project closely. We encourage qualified local contractors to bid. Complete project plans will be available in the coming weeks. Continued here...
Firefighters Honored for Service
Press Release: Firefighters were honored for service in 2013 to San Juan Island Fire Rescue on February 1, 2014. San Juan Island Fire Rescue would like to thank the Orcas Fire Department for providing a crew of firefighters to cover an initial response in case of a call during our banquet.
Left to right: Ian Paterson, Department Firefighter of the Year. Joseph Foriska, Station 31 Firefighter of the Year. Brent Johnson, Support Volunteer of the Year. Michael hart, Station 34 Firefighter of the Year. Brandon Baney, Rookie of the Year. Ron Garner, Wildland Fire Safety Award. Kurt Long, Fire Boat Crew Member of the Year. Peter Goddu, Officer of the Year. Tom Odegard (not pictured), Tender Operator of the Year. Photo by John Miller, click to enlarge. Continued here...
Grief Support Group
Press Release: Tuesdays, 4 – 5:30 p.m. for 8 Weeks. March 4 – April 22, 2014. Through the generosity of our community, including the San Juan. Island Community Foundation, the Women’s Fund, United Way, and many individual donors, Hospice of San Juan Grief Support Services offers a professionally facilitated Grief Support Group. Facilitator: Lenore Bayuk, MN, ACNS. Tuesdays, 4 – 5:30 pm for 8 weeks, beginning March 4th. An opportunity for sharing experiences and acquiring tools and resources for coping with grief.
Grief support for all in our community is part of the mission of Hospice of San Juan and the group is open to everyone who has experienced a significant loss. Prior hospice affiliation is not required. Contact Lenore Bayuk at 360-378-3636, ext. 1, to register for the March Grief Support Group. Early registration is advised as the number of participants is limited. Continued here...
Library Launches Microsoft IT Academy Membership
Press Release: The San Juan Island Library announced new technology training opportunities at the . The Washington Microsoft IT Academy (ITA) will provide access without charge to a wide range of Microsoft online courses and learning resources. Microsoft IT Academy program provides industry-leading technology skills to help bridge the skills gap.
The IT Academy will also be available online. Participants may choose to access the coursework at the library or from home computers. Course certification is also available but will need to be paid for by those taking the courses.
With Microsoft IT Academy the library can provide online curriculum on fundamental technology skills. The courses offered are critical to be successful in today’s technologically evolving world. The San Juan Island Library can provide these online classes at no cost to the community, through a partnership developed by the Washington State Library and Microsoft Corporation. Continued here...
IMA Completes Purchase of New Museum Space
Press Release from San Juan Island Museum of Art: The San Juan Islands Museum of Art (known as IMA) recently announced that the organization has completed purchase of the building at 540 Spring Street that was the former home of the island’s Emergency Medical Service. Construction to convert the 5,000 square foot structure into a visual arts museum is scheduled to begin within a few days and to be completed by late June. The museum staff is planning for an opening exhibition to be open to the public over the July Fourth holiday next summer.
Charlie Bodenstab, the acting Executive Director of IMA pointed out that IMA has had full use of the building since entering into a lease-purchase agreement with the Hospital Board last May, this interim period has provided ample time to complete plans, contracts and permits for the project. IMA has concurrently undertaken the process of raising funds to support the costs of purchase and reconstruction. Continued here...
Eagles Build New Nest in American Camp Parking Area
Press Release from SJI National Historical Park: Once again a resident bald eagle pair at American Camp are constructing new living quarters in the visitor center parking area. This will be the third nest built in the general vicinity of the center since 1995, according to park records. The nest is conveniently located near the employee parking area and within easy viewing from the visitor center porch.
The initial nest was constructed in 1995 near the top of a Douglas fir located just south of the entrance road about 50 feet from the American Camp parking area, according to Mike Vouri, park chief of interpretation (who arrived the same year). The eagles have been spotted removing limbs from that nest and reseting them into the new one, according to visitor center staff.The first young (two eaglets) were hatched and fledged from the entrance road nest in 1996, and save for 1997 and 1999, the nesting pair had young every year through 2007, totaling 15 eaglets. Continued here...
Sen. Ranker Bill will have Cable, Internet, Landline and Cellular Providers Paying You
OLYMPIA – A bill sponsored by Sen. Kevin Ranker, D-Orcas Island, will bring fairness to the relationship between consumers and their telecommunications providers. Under the Telecommunications Consumer Fairness Act, which is sponsored by Ranker and cosponsored by a broad bipartisan group of 24 fellow lawmakers, telecommunications companies will be required to provide a credit on a consumer’s bill for service outages caused by the company that total more than 12 hours in a monthly billing cycle.
“If a person is late paying their bill, you can bet their cable, internet, cell phone or landline provider will let you know about it,” Ranker said. “Isn’t it only fair that if those same providers fail to provide a service consumers have paid for that the consumers are compensated when that service isn’t provided? I think so and that’s what this bill is about.”
Under the bill, the amount of the credit consumers receive is based on monthly billing and is pro-rated based on the number of days or portions of days of the outage. Failure to provide the billing credit will be a violation of the Consumer Protection act. More here...
Demolition at Spring Street Landing - UPDATE
The Port of Friday Harbor’s demolition contractor, MEM Enterprises, should receive their final permit to begin demolition of the Spring Street Landing building by January 27th. The Port had previously anticipated demolition to begin January 2lst. This delay is due to waiting for the Department of Labor & Industries permit. The roof is scheduled for removal on January 30th with the majority of the building to be removed the following work day. More here...
Grant to IMA Supports School Art Education
San Juan Island Elementary and Middle school students will benefit from a recent grant to San Juan Islands Museum of Art (IMA) earmarked for support of the K-12 art program. A charitable foundation that supports educational projects provided $25,000 to extend, enrich, strengthen, and continue art education for public school students on San Juan Island. When dramatic cuts in educational funding four years ago threatened to curtail or eliminate art education from elementary and middle school curricula, IMA spearheaded the effort to assure that island youth would continue to have access to quality visual arts enrichment experiences. “Support for public school arts education has always been a major focus of IMA,” affirmed Barb Ray, member of the IMA Board of Trustees.In partnership with the San Juan Island School District and with additional support from the San Juan Island Community Foundation, the SJICF Women’s Fund, Washington State Arts Commission, local PTA organizations and others, IMA has enabled over 550 local students to engage in a variety of arts activities and learning opportunities under the guidance of qualified artist/teachers. Continued here...
Community Fields Agreement
San Juan Island School District is excited to announce that an agreement has been reached with Friday Harbor Athletic Association’s newly formed Friday Harbor Fields Board to amend an existing lease for the development of the community fields located on Carter Street. At a special school board meeting on Friday, January 17th, 2014 the San Juan Island School District Board of Directors agreed to support an amendment that will make possible a donated “Challenge Grant” allowing the project to move forward.The parties understand and agree that this project is being undertaken for the good of the community, and that all parties must to work together to cooperatively complete the project in a timely manner and on budget. Questions can be directed to: Superintendent Rick Thompson, San Juan Island School District, PO Box 458 Friday Harbor, WA 98250. Continued here...
Sunshine Alley Design Project
Town of Friday Harbor Press Release: The Town Council has selected a consulting team (Beckwith Consulting Group) to work with Town staff, Sunshine Alley stakeholders, and the public on the development of an urban design plan and program for Sunshine Alley including the backs of buildings and properties that front onto the alley space from the surrounding block.
The urban design planning process will include interviews with property and business owners of the block, focus group sessions with stakeholder interests and organizations, a public charrette, a series of public open houses on plan progress and proposals, a survey of Sunshine Alley customers, and an eventual survey of the public on final plan proposals and implementation particulars. The planning process will start in December and initiate charrettes and open houses beginning in January.
Depending on the outcome of the process, the ultimate plan could include proposals for gateways and wayfinding signage, interconnected interior walkways, outdoor performing and eating areas, water features and artworks, street trees and green walls, children's play areas, and a vertical identifying structure. Continued here...
Record Park Visitor Numbers Set in 2013
Press Release from SJI National Historical Park: More than 60,000 satisfied visitors crossed the thresholds of San Juan National Historical Park's visitor centers in 2013, the most recorded in the 47-year history of the park, according to Mike Vouri, the park's chief of interpretation and visitor services. This figure does not include those visitors who don't enter the visitor centers. Traffic counters located on the English Camp entrance drive and Cattle Point Road at the junction of Eagle Cove Drive at American Camp normally record about 250,000 visits per year.
"We knew we were experiencing heavy visitation by the number of automobiles parked along the American Camp entrance road and the volume of business in the centers at peak hours last summer," Vouri said. "But we were most delighted about the comments we received on the quality of service provided by our staff and volunteers."
A survey designed by The Park Studies Unit at the University of Idaho and distributed by park staff each August revealed that visitors were 99 percent satisfied with the service provided, and 98 percent understood the park's significance. Moreover, narrative comments consistently praised the park staff and volunteers for being helpful and knowledgeable about the park and island at large. Continued here...
SeaDoc Starts an Important Coastal Cutthroat Trout Project
From The SeaDoc Society: Coastal or sea-run cutthroat trout are freshwater fish that also move into the marine waters to feed and are an important recreational fishery in many parts of the Salish Sea. Many people don't think of the San Juan Islands when they think of cutthroat trout, but they were historically caught in the area. Long-standing residents recall a time when these rare fish were much more abundant. While recent work documented cutthroat trout in some streams in the San Juan archipelago, little is known about the current status of coastal cutthroat trout in this area.
Thanks to funding raised from private donors, the SeaDoc Society just awarded a grant to Long Live the Kings to analyze the abundance of coastal cutthroat trout in the San Juan Islands.With collaborators at the Wild Fish Conservancy, Kwiáht, and the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, Long Live the Kings also will analyze the genetics and spawn-timing characteristics of cutthroat trout from multiple streams in the San Juan Islands to determine if there are unique stocks within each of the multiple watersheds and whether coastal cutthroat trout in the San Juans are a unique stock complex. Continued here...
Friday Harbor Waterfront
Local San Juan County writers who, in partnership with HistoryLink.org, the free online encyclopedia of Washington state history, recently launched the "writing our history" project. This project adds stories written by our own local writers and is a countywide collaborative effort to create a body of well-researched and broadly accessible essays on the history of Friday Harbor and San Juan County. A history of Friday Harbor’s waterfront, written by Boyd Pratt is the most recently added story.
2014 Call For Sculptures
San Juan Islands Sculpture Park is looking for new sculptures. Impartial art professionals and academics will choose sculptures by blind review. Selection criteria is based on art that is both pleasing to the public and serves to broaden the cultural horizons of the viewer. Submission is by digital photograph(s) of completed work and dimensions. Artist bio will be requested when/if chosen for installation. All works must be deemed “safe” and suitable for outdoor display in occasional high winds, rain and possible snow. This 16 year old park is now self managed and no longer part of the local museum.
Installations will be in May and June of 2014. Overnight accommodations provided – subject to availability. Installation assistance is also available. SJISP has a truck with a 3,000 lb crane. SJISP is a 501 c 3 registered non-profit. Artist agrees to place art for a two year period if not sold sooner. 2014 Time Line. Open Date: Jan 1, 2014 (this is the first date photos may be submitted). Close Date: April 1, 2014. Continued here...
News from Brickworks!
Press Release from the Ag Guild Board: What a year it has been. Last November we wrote to you asking for help to make Brickworks a reality. You did it! As dollars steadily came in from folks in all walks of life, Ravenhill Construction along with a large cadre of volunteers pounded nails and painted walls, and on June 15 you joined us as we opened the doors. In September we finished the commercial kitchen. The renovation is now all but complete — and paid for.
The Farmers’ Market has settled into its permanent home. This summer the Art Market flourished, and we began our Sunday afternoon gatherings at Brickworks. We’ve had birthday parties, dances, a chili cook-off, meetings, lectures and sing-alongs. Our Facilities Manager, Tanja Williamson is coordinating logistics for the many unique expressions of our community embracing Brickworks. Continued here...
Volunteer of the Century Named
Press Release from SJI National Historical Park: San Juan Islander Jim Meredith has been a constant in San Juan National Historical Park's living history program, volunteering here for nearly 40 years. We celebrated Jim's service Saturday, Dec. 14th by naming him the "Volunteer of the Century."
There isn't anything he doesn't know about the British Royal Marines. In fact, the Royal Marines declared him (along with his long-time colleague Fred Henley) an honorary member of their corps in 1998. Thank you, Jim, for all that you have done for the park and your community. Literally millions of visitors have enjoyed your exacting (and loving) approach to your craft. More here...
Westcott Bay Land Addition Now Complete with 34 More Acres
Press Release from SJI National Historical Park: The conservation and addition of the former Webb property to San Juan Island National Historical Park was recently completed when The Conservation Fund transferred the remaining 34 acres to the park, announced superintendent Lee Taylor.
The NPS acquired the first portion of the 70-acre property last March from The Conservation Fund with support from the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF), a federal land protection program that receives a percentage of proceeds from offshore oil and gas royalties. The U.S. Congress appropriated the LWCF funding in Fiscal Year 2010 with strong support from U.S. Senators Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell and Representative Rick Larsen.The newly protected land, which includes primarily woodlands located along 2,500 feet of pristine shoreline on Westcott Bay, will enable the NPS to enhance the park's educational and recreational offerings at English Camp. Continued here...
Larsen Seeks Answers on Customs Facility in Friday Harbor
Press Release: Rep. Rick Larsen, WA-02, is seeking answers to questions that constituents have raised regarding the proposed location for a new Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) facility in Friday Harbor. In a letter to General Services Administration and CBP facilities, Larsen asked about the site-selection process and possible alternatives.
“A number of San Juan Island residents have raised concerns that the new CBP facility is in the heart of downtown Friday Harbor’s commercial waterfront,” Larsen wrote. “The community has worked to create a welcoming culture for residents and visitors, and some community members are concerned that the CBP facility will adversely affect the climate. They have also told me they are concerned that they did not have sufficient opportunity to provide input on the location and its potential impact on tourism.” Continued here...
Thanks To Monika Wieland of Orca Watcher for this post: While going through pictures from years past, in many cases for photos to post on my Orca Watcher Photography Facebook page, I inevitably see the pictures I took while waiting for whales. People who haven't been to San Juan Island perhaps have the impression you can just go to Lime Kiln on the west side and see whales at just about anytime, but this is far from the case. It's known as Whale Watch Park, but a lot of us joke it should more accurately be called Whale Wait Park. So, what do you do while you wait for whales? Continued here...
Local History Essays Published on HistoryLink
Press Release from Sandy Strehlou Historic Preservation Coordinator, Town of Friday Harbor: Thanks to local San Juan County writers who, in partnership with HistoryLink.org, the free online encyclopedia of Washington state history, have launched the "writing our history" project. This project will add our own stories to HistoryLink.org, written by our own local writers, and will be available to more than 5,000 students, teachers, journalists, scholars, government and business researchers, tourists, and general public who come to HistoryLink.org every day. Several new articles have recently been published.
A history of Friday Harbor’s namesake, written by the late Brenda C. Pratt and originally published in the San Juan Historical Museum’s 2003 newsletter, is now included in the People’s History Library on HistoryLink.org. Her article, Thank God It's Still Friday!, can be read here...Pratt’s research authenticates our most storied place name: It is possible that Friday's name was Poalima. He was born on Oahu, in 1830, according to the 1880 San Juan Island Census. His Hawaiian name has been written as "Poalie," though this word has no meaning in the Hawaiian language, and therefore was most probably "Poalima," which translates as "Friday." This would have been his only given name due to his class in Hawaiian society. During his employment with Hudson's Bay Company from 1841 to 1860, he is referred to as "Friday" only. Brenda Pratt. Photo above: Friday Harbor, 1906 J. A. McCormick, Courtesy UW Special Collections. Continued here...
PowerPoint Presentation of the Port’s Dec 3 Meeting
On December 3rd, the Port Commission hosted a community meeting to introduce the Spring Street Landing Site design teams and view for the first time the initial conceptual design drawings for the Spring Street Landing building. The Port’s Waterfront Master Plan consultant, Makers Architecture, provided an update on the Master Plan. Please click on the link below for the PowerPoint presentation from this meeting. Presentation 12-3-2013 – web
The Port has begun the process of rebuilding the Spring Street Landing building, destroyed by fire a few months ago. The Commissioners of the Port of Friday Harbor have steadily moved forward on this project by contracting with engineers and architects to create a waterfront commercial building the San Juan Island community will be proud of for years to come. Demolition of the damaged building will take place soon. More here...
New Anacortes Ferry Terminal Information Tool Launched
Washington State Ferries has just launched a new addition to the Vessel Watch system, it shows the vehicle spaces available at the Anacortes Ferry terminal for the day’s upcoming sailings. The capacity numbers update in real time, and the display is updated as often as every 15 seconds. The background color of the capacity number changes from green, to yellow, to red, as spaces are purchased.
Travelers can now tell exactly how many people have already purchased tickets for a particular sailing, and plan accordingly. Note that for shared boats, the number displayed reflects all vehicles that have purchased tickets for each sailing, so space is not guaranteed for your island if you show up close to the time at which the tickets for the boat have all been purchased. See the new tool in action here: Anacortes Terminal Conditions
Listen to The Whales
The hydrophone node at Lime Kiln State Park is located just southwest of the Lighthouse in about 7 meters of water. The current dual-hydrophone system began streaming live sound on May 14, 2007. The hydrophones were wired up by Val Veirs and attached to existing moorings during a SCUBA dive by David Howitt and Scott Veirs. Continued here...
WSF is One Step Closer to Liquefied Natural Gas Propulsion
Press Release: Official Proposal Submitted to U.S. Coast Guard. Washington State Ferries is another step closer to significantly reducing fuel costs and transportation emissions by switching a class of vessels from diesel fuel to liquefied natural gas.
After more than three years of study, WSF has a plan to safely convert six Issaquah Class vessels to run on cleaner-burning LNG. The proposal was officially submitted to the U.S. Coast Guard on Nov. 18 in a formal letter of intent (LOI) and waterways suitability assessment (WSA). The submission of the LOI and WSA marks the official starting point of the Coast Guard’s review process. WSF expects the Coast Guard to issue a finding regarding the LNG conversion proposal in 2014.“Fuel is WSF’s fastest growing operating expense,” said David Moseley, assistant secretary for the Washington State Department of Transportation, Ferries Division. “Replacing diesel with LNG on the Issaquah Class ferries could result in very substantial savings on fuel over the remaining 30 years of their service life. This will also mean a cleaner, more efficient future for our fleet by significantly decreasing emissions.” Continued here...
Check out this cool time lapse video made by Chris Teren of Teren Photography of an hour long ferry trip from Anacortes to Friday Harbor.
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