Pam Fry is the Animal Shelter’s Volunteer of the Month

Posted on February 17, 2018 at 5:47 am by

Pam Fry – Contributed photo

From the Animal Shelter…

Pam Fry is the animal shelter’s “Volunteer of the Month” for February. Pam is a frequent visitor to the shelter, where she does energy balancing treatments on animals in need of help. The treatments help to clear stress and trauma and promote socializing and calmness. The treatments are tremendously helpful for animals who have recently arrived at the shelter as well as those that have a difficult time adapting to life in an animal shelter.

Tucker Avenue Project Reconstruction Phase 2 Begins February 26, 2018

Posted on February 17, 2018 at 5:45 am by

From the Town of Friday Harbor…

Drivers, bicyclists and pedestrians who use Tucker Avenue will enjoy a safer and better quality roadway by late-summer.

The Town of Friday Harbor has contracted with Strider Construction to reconstruct this portion of Tucker Avenue (Phase Two). The Contractor is scheduled to begin this project on Monday, February 26th. This project will include new water and sewer lines, road resurfacing, and the addition of bike lanes and sidewalks from Harbor Street to University Way.

The Town will be delivering door hangers with information about the project. The Town wants to ensure that notice of the construction will be received by all those directly affected by the project.

The Contractor is being asked to expedite the project with as little traffic disruption as possible; however road closures and detours will be unavoidable. Travelers should expect delays and limited or no access during certain phases of the project which includes removal of portions of existing asphalt, trenching and grading. The public is asked to exercise patience and to make every effort to be respectful of neighborhood residents when using detours in the area. Every effort will be made limit street closures.

Information and updates on the project will be posted as often as possible. Notice of this project timeline and construction updates will be published regularly once the project commences. Questions can be directed to the on-site Project Manager, Frank Baublits, at

What to Expect: Construction on Tucker February 26th through March 12th

Posted on February 17, 2018 at 5:40 am by

Tucker Avenue Reconstruction Project – Phase 2 – Construction Update. What to expect for the week(s) of February 26th through March 12th.

The Town of Friday Harbor truly appreciates everyone’s patience while we work through this project. A project manager/inspector will be available to any address concerns. Do not hesitate to contact the Project Inspector, Frank Baublits, at or (360) 461-2338. You may also contact Town Hall at (360) 378-2810 with questions or comments. Construction updates will be posted as often as possible.

Project task(s): The Contractor will be mobilizing equipment and locating utilities on both sides of Tucker Avenue from Harbor Street to University Way.

 Street Closure: There will be alternating one-way traffic on Tucker Avenue between February 26th and March 12th.

The northbound lane between Harbor Street and Larsen Street will remain closed beginning March 13th through the duration of the project. The Southbound traffic on Tucker will be diverted around the work or stopped entirely when road crossings are performed. Flaggers will be on-site during. There will be times when the Contractor needs use of the southbound lane and vehicles may experience short delays.

Local access will remain open at all times, however neighbors of the project should anticipate short delays during certain portions of construction. The Contractor is making every effort to not be disruptive to the residences in the area. Read More »

Best Picture Award

Posted on February 16, 2018 at 5:55 am by

L-R: Director of Photography/Editor Drew Hisey, Tyler Roberts, and actor Greg Marks – Contributed photo

Congratulations to Tyler Roberts. His film “Be Good Now” just won Best Picture at the Oregon Short Film Festival.

Tyler grew up here and graduated from FHHS in 2005 and Western Washington University in 2010. His parents are Mary and Roy, and he is the grandchild of Kip and Kitty.

“Be Good Now” is a story written by Tyler. He is the lead actor and he also co-directed the film with his friend Ty Minton-Small.

Tyler and his brother Trent both got their start in filmmaking back in Middle School with all their neighborhood friends on Park Street. Since then he has made many short sketch comedies and guerilla style videos, but never anything too serious. In fact, this is the first time he ever submitted a film to a film festival.

If the film had been rated, Tyler guesses it would have an “R” rating because of language and subject matter. (It’s the story of a middle school JV football coach who supplements his income to make ends meet by selling marijuana.) “But don’t let that scare you – the film has a good message” he says. “I wanted to say something to today’s youth about decisions and consequences”.

See the film trailer here on Vimeo. (Note: there is R-rated language on the trailer so be warned – And yes, that’s Tyler as the JV coach). Also, this will be showing in Bellingham this weekend at the Bellingham Film Showcase on February 25th.

Cari Matthews, MD, joins medical team at PeaceHealth Peace Island Medical Center

Posted on February 16, 2018 at 5:45 am by

Cari Matthews, MD. – Contributed photo

Cari Matthews, MD, has joined the staff at PeaceHealth Peace Island Medical Center. Matthews is a seasoned Emergency physician with special interests in remote care, aeromedical evacuation and travel medicine. She and her fellow Peace Island emergency medicine providers offer around-the-clock care, seven days a week.

Matthews comes to PeaceHealth from Benefis Health System in Great Falls, Montana. She is a Navy veteran with 15 years of experience serving with the Navy and Marines, including three combat deployments. She spent three years completing point-of-injury casualty evacuation with Marine helicopters in Iraq. She currently serves as a flight surgeon for the Air National Guard.

She says, “I feel very honored to be the one people come to at the worst moments in life – when they are hurt, frightened or confused.  No matter what the problem is, I use everything I can to help.”

Matthews’ home life is also quite busy, as she has four young, active children under the age of 10, including three-year-old twins. In her limited free time, she enjoys skiing, scuba diving, traveling, hiking and dabbling with cooking. She and her family are delighted to call Friday Harbor home.

Island Senior: It’s Flu Season!

Posted on February 16, 2018 at 5:30 am by

Tea and Oranges – Peggy Sue McRae photo

Island Senior is a regular column written by Peggy Sue McRae…

I was not planning to write about the flu this week but the flu chose me and according to my informal social media commiserations I am not alone. This is turning out to be one of the worst flu seasons in years.

I was surprised to get the flu because I just got a flu shot. A few days later I had symptoms. The timing made me suspicious and I wondered, did the flu shot give me the flu? In a word, no, the flu shot does not give you the flu. It can take a few weeks for a flu shot to kick in. I was most likely exposed to the flu before I got my shot. While the flu shot contains influenza strains, those strains have been inactivated, which means they are no longer infectious.*

At first I thought I had come down with a common cold due to a runny nose being my initial symptom. What convinced me it was the flu was the lack of appetite and achy muscles. The distinction can be important. People who have chronic medical conditions like diabetes or heart disease, compromised immune systems, the very young and the elderly, are at greater risk of developing severe symptoms from the flu and should seek medical attention if they have any trouble breathing or have a persistent fever.**

If you do get sick, stay home. Even if your symptoms are not severe you could be exposing those who are more vulnerable. I was lucky enough to have work I could do at home and friends willing to pick up groceries, check my mail for me, and bring me firewood. For some of us who love our independence a brief illness can bring home just how much we need our friends and community.

Previous to succumbing to the flu I’d had thoughts of joining the Mullis Center’s Friday Field Trip with Callie McKay. Definitely next month! I hear there is a trip to Burlington and LaConner in the works. I have a feeling any adventure with Callie is going to be fun.

*Link to article on PBS Newshour website: It’s really not too late to get your flu shot, and other flu myths debunked.

**Link to article on PBS Newshour website: Defending against this season’s deadly flu: 5 things to know.

Valentine’s Day Dance

Posted on February 15, 2018 at 6:27 pm by

Are you looking for some evening fun to do on Valentine’s Day weekend?

Join Isle Seat Theatre/Dance Workshop 2 for dancing and great listening under the lights as we celebrate with the One More Time Band featuring Debbie Nash Strasser.

Old swing/jazz standards with that big band sound will have you out on the dance floor or swaying in your seat! All ages are welcome, no need to bring a date! Light refreshments provided. A basic dance lesson will be offered from 7 -7:30 by Phil Macbride, then it’s live music from 7:30 -9:30 p.m.

For more information or to purchase advance tickets, please visit or call 378-4572.

Kati English, February EMT of the Month

Posted on February 15, 2018 at 5:30 am by

Kati English – Contributed photo

Congratulations to February EMT of the Month Kati English. Kati has been an EMT since 2016 and is also a tech at the ER AND is also taking the Fire Fighter 1 class over at San Juan Island Fire.

Even though Kati’s schedule is packed with work, fire school and family life, it was noted that she has increased her volunteer hours with San Juan EMS in the last two months.

This is a thank you and shout out to a hard-working woman with a big smile and big heart. Thank you, Kati, for all you do!

Happy Birthday, Wanda June Opens This Friday

Posted on February 14, 2018 at 2:32 pm, by

Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.’s. satirical comedy, Happy Birthday, Wanda June opens in San Juan Community Theatre’s Gubelman Theatre THIS weekend with three performances: Friday and Saturday, February 16-17 at 7:30 pm and Sunday at 2 pm. Directed by Tony Vivenzio, the play is a twentieth century takeoff of Ulysses’ return from the Trojan War when hunter Harold  Continue Reading

Happy Valentines Day!

Posted on February 14, 2018 at 5:30 am, by

Thanks to local artist Teri Murray Cooter for this photo… 

Nourdine Jensen Scholarship Applications Due March 9

Posted on February 14, 2018 at 5:25 am, by

OPALCO’s Nourdine Jensen Cooperative Youth Scholarship Program is accepting applications from high school sophomores and juniors of OPALCO member households. Up to five scholars will receive a $1,000 scholarship from OPALCO and the family of Nourdine Jensen, as well as an all-expenses paid trip to the Youth Rally, a co-op leadership camp, at the College  Continue Reading

Local Firefighter Ben Waldron to Climb Building For Blood Cancer Cure

Posted on February 13, 2018 at 5:45 am, by

Local firefighter Ben Waldron will be participating in the Scott Firefighter Stairclimb on Sunday, March 11th in support of the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Says Ben, “For those that don’t know me personally. I’m a firefighter with the Seattle fire department, I am married with 4 kids, and make my home on Beautiful San Juan  Continue Reading

Friday Harbor’s Historic Waterfront

Posted on February 13, 2018 at 5:30 am, by

Here’s another find from the family archive, the Friday Harbor dock in horse and buggy days… click on the photo for an enlarged view…

Shelter Available Tonight

Posted on February 12, 2018 at 9:37 pm, by

It’s cold out there tonight…

FHFF Presents an Oscars Gala at Brickworks

Posted on February 12, 2018 at 5:30 am, by

Celebrate the Oscars with the FHFF March 3 at Brickworks… TICKETS NOW ON SALE!! Hurry, last year we sold out and had to turn folks away!! Come Celebrate the Oscar’s with the Friday Harbor Film Festival at the BRICKWORKS on Nichols Street in Friday Harbor MARCH 3, 2018. Doors open at 5:00pm! We will be celebrating  Continue Reading

Pet of the Week

Posted on February 12, 2018 at 5:15 am, by

I’m Debbie. My therapist says my mother was right, “I am beautiful inside and out”. She says I need to learn to embrace my inner goddess and let confidence flow through me like a river of light. She says if I love myself, others will love me too. And sometimes she says, “Debbie, I get  Continue Reading

Preserving Our History: The Blockhouse at English Camp

Posted on February 11, 2018 at 5:30 am, by

The blockhouse at English Camp is possibly the most iconic structural link to our island’s Pig War history. Recently, in a box of old family papers, I found an old photograph of English Camp from a time when the blockhouse looks about to collapse into the bay. I asked David Harsh who worked with the  Continue Reading

The Toy Box Featured As Chamber Member of the Month

Posted on February 10, 2018 at 5:30 am, by

The Toy Box was created in 1993 with the mission to have as much fun as possible while stocking the shop with creative, imaginative, educational and FUN toys, games and novelties. Over the 25 years in business, I have listened to our loyal local customers as well as the summer folks who come back every  Continue Reading

EDC to Offer Free Electrical Basics Training

Posted on February 10, 2018 at 5:20 am, by

The San Juan County Economic Development Council (EDC) will offer free training in electrical basics this spring, funded by the Orcas Island Community Foundation, Orcas Kiwanis,  Islanders Bank and Heritage Bank. The course will be taught at Orcas Island High School by Vocational Instructor Brett McFarland and others.  The training will include core electrician skills,  Continue Reading

Letter from Gay Graham

Posted on February 10, 2018 at 5:15 am, by

In the SJ Update mailbag this morning we find this letter from Gay Graham… To the Editor: “They tell you in this country that you have to pull yourself up by your bootstraps.  And we all believe that.  But first you’ve got to have the boots.” The San Juan Community Home Trust is grateful for  Continue Reading

Kyle Loring Says Goodbye After Ten Friendly Years

Posted on February 9, 2018 at 5:45 am, by

After ten years of public service as Friends of the San Juans’ staff attorney, Kyle Loring will be leaving the organization in June to pursue other endeavors. Starting this month, Friends will conduct a search for a talented environmental attorney to serve the people and wildlife of the San Juans. Since Friends hired Kyle in  Continue Reading

Stage Left’s Words of Love at Cynthia’s Valentine’s Dinner

Posted on February 9, 2018 at 5:30 am, by

Cynthia’s restaurant has a special Valentine’s menu served in conjunction with Island Stage Left’s Words of Love… Delicious food, wine, live music, soft lights and words of love that will make you smile, touch your heart and encourage you to leave the outside world behind for a while. We hope to share this wonderful evening  Continue Reading

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