Holiday market happening Friday and Saturday

Posted November 21, 2022 at 9:15 am by

One of San Juan Island’s most pop­u­lar hol­i­day events returns this week­end. The 44th Island Arti­sans Hol­i­day Mar­ket fundrais­er takes place Fri­day, Nov. 25 and Sat­ur­day, Nov. 26 at the San Juan Coun­ty Fairgrounds.

The mar­ket runs from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. on Fri­day and 10 a.m.-4 p.m. on Sat­ur­day. The orga­niz­ers encour­age every­one to come see their favorite artists, design­ers, and crafts­peo­ple — as well as some new ones. Stacey’s Cater­ing & Con­fec­tions will be serv­ing food in a heat­ed out­door seat­ing area.

The event is orga­nized by Island Arti­sans, non­prof­it found­ed in 1978 to raise schol­ar­ship funds for young artists with­in the com­mu­ni­ty. The hol­i­day mar­ket is the pri­ma­ry fundrais­er for those schol­ar­ships. Each par­tic­i­pat­ing artist donates 10 per­cent of their sales to sup­port the schol­ar­ship pro­gram and addi­tion­al dona­tions are wel­come. Last year’s efforts led to $12,000 in schol­ar­ships being award­ed to sev­en high school seniors.

Sculpture park reflections

Posted November 19, 2022 at 11:24 pm by

Wolverines win boys soccer state title

Posted November 19, 2022 at 10:27 pm by

The Fri­day Har­bor High School boys soc­cer team beat Orcas Island High School 2–1 on Sat­ur­day after­noon at Memo­r­i­al Sta­di­um in Ren­ton to cap­ture the North­west Dis­trict 1B/2B state title. The win gives Fri­day Har­bor its first state team title since the Wolver­ines won the vol­ley­ball cham­pi­onship in 1986.

Fri­day Har­bor rebound­ed from a loss against Orcas Island in last year’s state semi-finals to take three of four games against the Vikings in 2022, with one win each in the reg­u­lar sea­son, the bi-dis­trict cham­pi­onship, and now the state championship.

The Wolver­ines blocked traf­fic at the top of the fer­ry land­ing as near­ly a hun­dred cheer­ing San Juan Islanders watched the team raise their cham­pi­onship tro­phy just before 10 p.m. Response vehi­cles from the San Juan Coun­ty Sher­if­f’s Office, San Juan Island Fire and Res­cue, and San Juan Island EMS flashed lights and blast­ed sirens along Front St. The crew of the MV Yaki­ma showed their sup­port with two blasts of the foghorn.

Fri­day Har­bor’s state cham­pi­onship caps off the high school’s fall sports slate. Win­ter sports kick off with boys bas­ket­ball on Nov. 29 at Merid­i­an, girls bas­ket­ball on Dec. 3 at home against Belling­ham, and wrestling on Dec. 8 ver­sus Dar­ring­ton, Gran­ite Falls, and Sultan.

Friends of the Library’s online fundraiser opens Nov. 25

Posted November 19, 2022 at 7:40 pm by

The Friends of the Library are hold­ing an online auc­tion start­ing next week to raise mon­ey in sup­port of the San Juan Island Library’s youth pro­grams, teen pro­grams, adult pro­grams, online ser­vices, tech train­ing, and lan­guage classes.

The auc­tion — called Book­marked for the Hol­i­days — opens for bid­ding on Fri­day, Nov. 25 at 9 a.m. and runs through Fri­day, Dec. 2 at 4 p.m. Friends of the Library hope to raise $8,000.

More than 50 items from local busi­ness­es and res­i­dents have been list­ed already.

Memorial Park elm trees being pruned on Monday

Posted November 19, 2022 at 4:24 pm by

The Town shares an update about the sta­tus of the Dutch elms at the foot of Spring St.

Pro­fes­sion­al prun­ing of the Memo­r­i­al Park elms is sched­uled for Mon­day, Nov. 21, weath­er per­mit­ting. Res­i­dents are asked to avoid the area to reduce the effect of traf­fic dis­rup­tion. Traf­fic will also be affect­ed by hol­i­day light­ing instal­la­tion sched­uled for Tues­day, Nov. 29.

The Town was advised to fur­ther prune the trees after a risk assess­ment was com­plet­ed by Seat­tle-based Tree Solu­tions, Inc. The com­pa­ny spe­cial­izes in urban for­est man­age­ment and advis­es munic­i­pal­i­ties through­out West­ern Wash­ing­ton on the safe­ty of street trees. Prun­ing will be com­plet­ed by local arborist Gustafson Tree Care.

The Town has been work­ing to mit­i­gate dam­age to the 100-year-old Dutch elms since a sig­nif­i­cant por­tion of one tree broke off this spring.

“We plan to open the park for the hol­i­day sea­son once we feel assured the public’s safe­ty is not at risk,” says Town Admin­is­tra­tor Denice Kulseth.

The two elms were plant­ed in May 1922 by the Women’s Study Club as a memo­r­i­al to those lost in World War I — one rep­re­sent­ing Army loss­es, one rep­re­sent­ing Navy losses.

Ques­tions regard­ing the elms may be direct­ed to the Town Admin­is­tra­tor..

Severe weather shelter needs volunteers

Posted November 19, 2022 at 2:46 pm by

Unit­ed Way of San Juan Coun­ty sends along a request for help from the community.

We are des­per­ate­ly look­ing for vol­un­teers to help staff the Unit­ed Way cold weath­er shel­ter in Fri­day Har­bor. The shel­ter is only open when the tem­per­a­ture drops below 34 degrees and is only for the night. It is a low-time-demand way to serve the community.

To learn more, call Allan Smith at 360–939-1055 or Jill Berg­er at 360–317-6539.

WSF working to expand supply of licensed deck officers

Posted November 19, 2022 at 12:35 pm by

In their week­ly update to the pub­lic, Wash­ing­ton State Fer­ries shared news about the effects of improve­ments made to their train­ing programs.

While it remains impor­tant to con­tin­ue hir­ing new crewmem­bers as Wash­ing­ton State Fer­ries looks to the future, our biggest short-term con­straint con­tin­ues to be a lack of licensed deck offi­cers — cap­tains and mates — who require sig­nif­i­cant train­ing time.

Ear­li­er this year, we cre­at­ed two new pro­grams that encour­age our cur­rent employ­ees to take the nec­es­sary cours­es and exams to obtain a mates’ cre­den­tial. Over the next 18 months, we expect more than 40 employ­ees to com­plete all the train­ing and cre­den­tials nec­es­sary to work as mates, which is great for future sys­tem sta­bil­i­ty. We’re seek­ing to make these pro­grams permanent.

In their update, WSF also not­ed that they do not antic­i­pate being able to restore Sid­ney, B.C ser­vice any soon­er than sum­mer 2023.

Foster is the Animal Protection Society’s pet of the week

Posted November 19, 2022 at 11:23 am by

The Ani­mal Pro­tec­tion Soci­ety of Fri­day Har­bor shares a look at the adopt­able ani­mal of the week — Fos­ter, a large year-old mixed breed.

Hi every­one, I’m Fos­ter! Although I’ve only been at the shel­ter for less than a month, the peo­ple at APS-FH have been my friends for a long time — same with many of the Fri­day Har­bor locals, and that’s because I’m a friend­ly guy. One of my all time favorite things is meet­ing new peo­ple, and I make it a point to do just that. Do you know how many nice, fun­ny, joy­ful peo­ple there are on this island? In Wash­ing­ton state? In the whole wide world? Well I don’t know the exact num­ber, but I spend a lot of my time think­ing about how great it would be to meet all of those peo­ple and then before I know it, I’m on my way again — trot­ting off to explore and meet & greet who­ev­er I come across along the way.

A lot of the peo­ple I meet are smil­ing and talk­ing to me in that high, approv­ing pitch of theirs that I like so much. They’re some­times laugh­ing and that makes me laugh; they’re most often smil­ing and that makes me smile. I’m still fig­ur­ing out how to han­dle my excite­ment when I meet such hap­py peo­ple and espe­cial­ly when they’re the ones who car­ry deli­cious treats. It’s just so excit­ing and I get so excit­ed! But I’m learn­ing my man­ners and how to lis­ten; I know that when I find my person(s), we’ll set­tle into a very hap­py rou­tine, and I’ll get to prove what a very good pup I can be.

Learn more about Fos­ter here.

Frank drops in to share his mate’s catch

Posted November 18, 2022 at 11:17 pm by

Friday Harbor and Orcas Island will play for the state soccer championship on Saturday

Posted November 18, 2022 at 10:03 pm by

The boys soc­cer teams from both Fri­day Har­bor High School and Orcas Island High School won their state semi-final games on Fri­day after­noon, set­ting up a Sat­ur­day show­down for the state title. The top-seed­ed Wolver­ines knocked off fourth-seed­ed Saint George’s School of Spokane 2–1 in a shootout just a few hours after the third-seed­ed Vikings beat Mount Ver­non Chris­t­ian 1–0.

Fri­day Har­bor takes on Orcas tomor­row at 3 p.m. at Ren­ton Memo­r­i­al Sta­di­um. The win­ner becomes the 1B/2B state champion.

Sat­ur­day’s game marks the fourth of the sea­son between the two schools. Fri­day Har­bor beat Orcas 2–1 in a neu­tral-site shootout on Nov. 7 to win the bi-dis­trict cham­pi­onship and advance to state. The Wolver­ines also lost to the Vikings 3–2 at home on Oct. 11 and won 1–0 at Orcas on Sept. 20.

DNR ends net pen aquaculture on state-owned aquatic lands

Posted November 18, 2022 at 1:26 pm by

The Wash­ing­ton State Depart­ment of Nat­ur­al Resources shares news about a major pol­i­cy change relat­ed to aqua­cul­ture in the state.

Washington’s pub­lic aquat­ic lands will no longer be home to com­mer­cial fin­fish net pen aqua­cul­ture. Com­mis­sion­er of Pub­lic Lands Hilary Franz announced today on Bain­bridge Island an exec­u­tive order that would pro­hib­it com­mer­cial fin­fish net pen aqua­cul­ture on state-owned aquat­ic lands man­aged by her agency, the Wash­ing­ton State Depart­ment of Nat­ur­al Resources.

“As we’ve seen too clear­ly here in Wash­ing­ton, there is no way to safe­ly farm fin­fish in open sea net pens with­out jeop­ar­diz­ing our strug­gling native salmon. Today, I’m announc­ing an end to the prac­tice. We, as a state, are going to do bet­ter by our salmon, by our fish­er­men, and by our tribes,” said Franz. “Com­mer­cial fin­fish farm­ing is detri­men­tal to salmon, orcas and marine habi­tat. I’m proud to stand with the rest of the west coast today by say­ing our waters are far too impor­tant to risk for fish farm­ing profits.”

Com­mis­sion­er Franz’s order will align Washington’s net pen salmon aqua­cul­ture pol­i­cy with poli­cies already in place in Alas­ka, Cal­i­for­nia, and Oregon.

Com­mis­sion­er Franz was joined in her announce­ment by Chair­man Leonard Fors­man of the Suquamish Tribe and Emma Helver­son, Exec­u­tive Direc­tor of the Wild Fish Conservancy.

“On behalf of the Suquamish peo­ple, I want to thank Com­mis­sion­er Franz for lis­ten­ing to Tribes and oth­ers who place the health of the Sal­ish Sea as their top pri­or­i­ty.” said Fors­man. “End­ing com­mer­cial fin­fish farm­ing in our ances­tral waters is an impor­tant step towards pro­tect­ing marine water qual­i­ty, salmon pop­u­la­tions, and the endan­gered South­ern Res­i­dent Killer Whales. The impacts of com­mer­cial fin­fish farm­ing put all of that at risk, and threat­ened treaty rights and ulti­mate­ly our way of life and cul­ture.” Con­tin­ue Reading

American Camp Visitor Center set to close for the winter

Posted November 18, 2022 at 11:57 am by

If you haven’t yet checked out the new exhibits at the Amer­i­can Camp Vis­i­tor Cen­ter, today and tomor­row will be your last chance until 2023. Cre­at­ed in col­lab­o­ra­tion with native groups from through­out the region, the cur­rent line­up of exhibits opened in June of this year. The vis­i­tor cen­ter is open until 4 p.m. today and from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. tomorrow.

Sunset at Argyle Lagoon

Posted November 17, 2022 at 8:13 pm by

Peace Island Medical Center marks ten-year anniversary

Posted November 17, 2022 at 3:56 pm by

Charlie Anderson and Lenore Bayuk cutting the ribbon to open Peace Island Medical Center in Nov. 2012

Peace­Health shares a detailed update about the ten-year anniver­sary of Peace Island Med­ical Center.

Today, Peace­Health Peace Island Med­ical Cen­ter marks 10 years of serv­ing the health­care needs of the San Juan Island community.

The 2012 open­ing cel­e­bra­tion, attend­ed by hun­dreds of com­mu­ni­ty mem­bers and Peace­Health care­givers, was the cul­mi­na­tion of a five-year, grass­roots effort by local res­i­dents to bring inte­grat­ed, high-qual­i­ty health­care to the San Juan Islands.

Under the umbrel­la of the San Juan Island Com­mu­ni­ty Foun­da­tion, these cit­i­zens formed a hos­pi­tal com­mit­tee and began research­ing poten­tial oper­at­ing part­ners. They ulti­mate­ly chose Peace­Health, impressed by its mis­sion of respect, com­pas­sion and car­ing and depth and breadth of ser­vices. The com­mit­tee iden­ti­fied a 25-acre fam­i­ly home­stead near the air­port. Local res­i­dents gen­er­ous­ly donat­ed $10 mil­lion towards the effort, with Peace­Health con­tribut­ing anoth­er $20 mil­lion. Con­struc­tion start­ed in July 2011; the hos­pi­tal opened on time and on bud­get at 11:17 a.m. on Nov. 17, 2012  — a nod to the street address, 1117 Spring St.

A 10-bed crit­i­cal access hos­pi­tal, Peace Island was built to reflect the cul­ture and val­ues of the island, fea­tur­ing sus­tain­able mate­ri­als, abun­dant local art­work and design ele­ments that com­ple­ment the nat­ur­al beau­ty of the islands.

In addi­tion to a 24-hour Emer­gency Depart­ment, Peace Island hous­es a can­cer care and infu­sion cen­ter, inpa­tient med­ical unit, imag­ing depart­ment, lab­o­ra­to­ry, surgery suite and fam­i­ly med­i­cine clinic.

With access to an array of ser­vices pre­vi­ous­ly unavail­able to them, San Juan Island res­i­dents have been saved thou­sands of off-island med­ical vis­its since Peace Island opened. Some 10-year totals include:

  • 35,817 Emer­gency Depart­ment visits
  • 1,575 patients admitted
  • 133,203 clin­ic visits
  • 17,661 chemother­a­py infusions
  • 2,825 colono­scopies
  • 8,600 mam­mo­grams
  • 16,934 CT scans
  • 1,841 MRIs
  • 9,330 ultra­sounds
  • 380,174 lab tests
  • 14,719 out­pa­tient rehab ther­a­py ses­sions — added in 2020
  • 159 ortho­pe­dic out­pa­tient surg­eries — added in 2015
  • 356 gen­er­al out­pa­tient surg­eries — added in 2015

Today Peace Island employs 109 full-time care­givers and providers and eight vis­it­ing spe­cial­ists, and is sup­port­ed by the excep­tion­al Peace Island Vol­un­teers orga­ni­za­tion. The med­ical cen­ter works with mul­ti­ple val­ued com­mu­ni­ty part­ners, includ­ing San Juan Pub­lic Hos­pi­tal Dis­trict, the Joyce L. Sobel Fam­i­ly Resource Cen­ter, and San Juan Coun­ty Health & Com­mu­ni­ty Ser­vices to keep local res­i­dents safe and healthy.

“We are proud of our progress and incred­i­bly grate­ful to our care­givers, vol­un­teers and com­mu­ni­ty part­ners for help­ing us serve with com­pas­sion and ded­i­ca­tion, and to our patients for trust­ing us with their care,” said Jack Estra­da, Peace Island chief admin­is­tra­tive offi­cer. “It’s been our hon­or. We look for­ward to serv­ing the com­mu­ni­ty for many more decades to come.”

High tide at Eagle Cove

Posted November 17, 2022 at 2:25 pm by

Island Senior: Happy Thanksgiving!

Posted November 17, 2022 at 1:24 pm by

With my Mom, Flossie, at Plimoth Village 1991

Each year Thanks­giv­ing comes around as a time­ly reminder to be thank­ful for the many ways in which we are blessed. One thing I am thank­ful for are my mem­o­ries of a fam­i­ly trip to Boston and vis­it to the his­toric Plimoth Plan­ta­tion.

The main rea­son for the trip was my sis­ter Betty’s wed­ding but the rich his­to­ry of the place was impos­si­ble to ignore. Right there in the church­yard where the wed­ding took place were the grave­stones of both Ben­jamin Franklin and Moth­er Goose!

As tourists we saw a repli­ca of the Mayflower and the real Ply­mouth Rock. With­out the plaque Ply­mouth Rock would be unre­mark­able, but it is said to be where the Pil­grims first set foot on the Amer­i­can con­ti­nent in 1620. We also vis­it­ed a repli­ca of a 17th cen­tu­ry Pil­grim vil­lage. Here actors played the parts of his­toric folk, a preach­er, a black­smith, and indus­tri­ous farmwomen.

Also part of the muse­um was a native wetu — a house. In this set­ting, descen­dants of Wampanoag natives demon­strat­ed tan­ning a deer hide and cook­ing but what I found most mem­o­rable were the jokes they told about the Pilgrims.

So much of the his­to­ry between Euro­pean set­tlers and indige­nous Amer­i­cans is a grim sto­ry of vio­lent con­quest. This was true about the Pil­grims, yet in the fall of 1621, after a year of hard­ship and sick­ness, the Pil­grims and the Wampanoag gath­ered togeth­er for three days of feast­ing and entertainment.

This Thanks­giv­ing if you are gath­er­ing with fam­i­ly, friends, or com­mu­ni­ty, between the turkey, pie, and foot­ball be sure to take a few moments to count your bless­ings. My Mom and Jim are gone now. The chil­dren of my sister’s mar­riage are now grown-up adults. Time has swept by since I poked Ply­mouth Rock with my own toe.

I’m thank­ful for pump­kin pie and turkey sand­wich­es. I’m thank­ful for my dear friends and the beau­ti­ful island I call home. I’m also thank­ful for my mem­o­ries of a fun fam­i­ly jour­ney across the coun­try to the place of the first Thanks­giv­ing. Have a great Thanks­giv­ing everyone!

Note: The island’s 24th annu­al Com­mu­ni­ty Thanks­giv­ing Din­ner will take place from noon to 5 p.m. at the Mullis Cen­ter. The Mullis Cen­ter will sup­ply the space but the Com­mu­ni­ty Thanks­giv­ing Din­ner orga­ni­za­tion is putting on the event. To par­tic­i­pate or vol­un­teer, vis­it their web­site.