San Juan 4‑H signups are still open

Posted November 23, 2022 at 9:11 pm by

The San Juan Coun­ty 4‑H pro­gram still has spaces open for its dog club, cat club, horse club, and live­stock club. Par­tic­i­pants can also join the inter-island club, which has a vari­ety of in-per­son and Zoom lean­ing options — sports, fine and per­form­ing arts, farm clin­ics, bak­ery and art stu­dio tours, and hands-on trades work.

Youth who were between the ages of five and 18 on Oct. 1, 2022 are eli­gi­ble to par­tic­i­pate dur­ing the 2022–23 4‑H year.

The pro­gram is also look­ing for vol­un­teers to co-lead the clubs.

To learn more, call 360–370-7662, email sanjuan.4‑h@wsu.edu, or vis­it the San Juan Coun­ty 4‑H web­site.

County Council meets with WSF officials

Posted November 23, 2022 at 1:41 pm by

San Juan Coun­ty sends along an update about a recent meet­ing between the Coun­ty Coun­cil, state leg­is­la­tors, and Wash­ing­ton State Ferries.

Ahead of the busy, upcom­ing hol­i­day sea­son, mem­bers of San Juan County’s Coun­cil met with Wash­ing­ton State offi­cials and rep­re­sen­ta­tives from the Wash­ing­ton State Fer­ries to express islanders’ need for reli­able fer­ry service.

Coun­ty Coun­cilmem­bers Jamie Stephens and Cindy Wolf joined Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Debra Lekanoff; Wash­ing­ton State Sec­re­tary of Trans­porta­tion Roger Mil­lar; WSF Assis­tant Sec­re­tary Pat­ty Rub­stel­lo; Direc­tor of Marine Oper­a­tions Steve Nevey; and Direc­tor of Plan­ning, Cus­tomer and Gov­ern­ment Rela­tions John Vez­i­na to dis­cuss devel­op­ments in WSF ser­vices and operations.

“We’re so grate­ful to Rep. Lekanoff for orga­niz­ing this meet­ing because we were able to give folks a clear­er under­stand­ing of the impor­tance of the inter­is­land run,” said Coun­cilmem­ber Cindy Wolf.

WSF report­ed there were 45 can­cel­la­tions of San Juan Islands route sail­ings in the span of two weeks – which falls three per­cent short of their goal of 99 per­cent reli­a­bil­i­ty. Atten­dees dis­cussed ways to be more effi­cient in noti­fy­ing rid­ers of can­cel­la­tions and work­ing togeth­er to ensure islanders have enough time to make oth­er arrange­ments. The impor­tance of the inter­is­land route was emphasized.

“These can­cel­la­tions affect work­ing fam­i­lies, school chil­dren, gov­ern­ment oper­a­tions, social ser­vices, sher­iff oper­a­tions, and more,” Wolf said. “It impacts our abil­i­ty to do busi­ness as a com­mu­ni­ty when small trades­peo­ple can lose 20 per­cent of their income for a week when the inter­is­land is cancelled.”

WSF com­mit­ted to work­ing with Rep. Lekanoff and Coun­ty Coun­cil on bet­ter noti­fi­ca­tion strate­gies. A com­mit­tee con­sist­ing of elect­ed offi­cials and local cham­bers of com­merce is one pro­posed solu­tion that might sup­port the San Juan Islands and Ana­cortes Fer­ry Advi­so­ry Committees.

WSF antic­i­pates that their increased focus on recruit­ment and employ­ee edu­ca­tion will bring relief to the sys­tem by the sum­mer of 2023. They expect less can­cel­la­tions due to staffing shortages.

“I was glad to hear they are review­ing the dwell time,” said Coun­cilmem­ber Stephens. “Under­stand­ing the time it takes to load and unload boats – espe­cial­ly dur­ing the sum­mer – is key to keep­ing the boats on schedule.”

Ear­li­er this year, WSF cre­at­ed two new pro­grams that encour­age cur­rent employ­ees to take the nec­es­sary cours­es and exams to obtain a mates’ cre­den­tial. Over the next 18 months, they expect more than 40 to com­plete all the train­ing and cre­den­tials nec­es­sary to work as mates, which will sup­port future sys­tem sta­bil­i­ty. They’ll be work­ing with Gov­er­nor Inslee and the leg­is­la­ture to make these pro­grams permanent.

The bottom of the bay

Posted November 23, 2022 at 8:48 am by

Little boots

Posted November 22, 2022 at 9:24 pm by

Fundraiser underway for high school teacher Paige Caldwell

Posted November 22, 2022 at 7:09 pm by

Contributed photo

Ear­li­er this month, Fri­day Har­bor High School his­to­ry teacher Paige Cald­well was diag­nosed with fibro­lamel­lar hepa­to­cel­lu­lar car­ci­no­ma, a rare form of genet­ic liv­er can­cer. Paige and her hus­band, Mark Burk­hold­er, are now run­ning an online fundrais­er to help defray the costs of her upcom­ing treat­ment, which is expect­ed to include mul­ti­ple surg­eries, radi­a­tion, and chemother­a­py — and could last until the fall of 2023.

“Any finan­cial sup­port you can offer Paige today will go direct­ly toward her treat­ment and recov­ery costs,” Mark says. “Your sup­port will also help off­set lost wages that are inevitable dur­ing a leave that will stretch through almost an entire school year.”

The fundrais­er is near­ly 70 per­cent of the way to its $25,000 goal. Con­tri­bu­tions can be made through Paige and Mark’s GoFundMe cam­paign.

You can also keep up with their jour­ney and leave com­ments of sup­port on their Car­ing­Bridge jour­nal.

Land Bank hosts walk at Beaverton Marsh Preserve on Saturday

Posted November 22, 2022 at 5:44 pm by

The San Juan Coun­ty Con­ser­va­tion Land Bank’s Turkey Walk-Not-Trot returns this Sat­ur­day, Nov. 26 from 10–11:30 a.m at Beaver­ton Marsh Preserve.

Land Bank staffer Shau­na Bar­rows will lead a small group on an easy stroll around the preserve’s rough­ly two-mile loop. Shau­na will talk about the site’s his­to­ry and iden­ti­fy plants of inter­est along the way.

Park­ing is lim­it­ed, so an RSVP is required. Con­tact Tan­ja Williamson at 360–378-4402 or tanjaw@sjclandbank.org to register.

Rotary Club dictionary project reaches students at eight schools in the San Juan Islands

Posted November 22, 2022 at 1:50 pm by

Thank-you note from a Friday Harbor Elementary School student — Contributed photo

Rotary Club of San Juan Islands shares news about one of their their long-stand­ing edu­ca­tion initiatives.

Mem­bers of the Rotary Club of San Juan Islands recent­ly gift­ed dic­tio­nar­ies to third, fourth, and fifth grade stu­dents through­out San Juan Coun­ty. The pro­gram reached stu­dents at Fri­day Har­bor Ele­men­tary School, Paideia Clas­si­cal School, Grif­fin Bay School, Still­point School, Orcas Island Ele­men­tary School, Salmonber­ry School, OASIS, and Lopez Ele­men­tary School.

It’s a joy to give each stu­dent a book after two years of COVID restrictions.

In the past 18 years of the project, Rotary has gift­ed more than 4,500 dic­tio­nar­ies under the lead­er­ship of its Lit­er­a­cy Chair, Bar­bara Fagan.

Quiet days at American Camp

Posted November 22, 2022 at 11:26 am by

Community Thanksgiving dinner available in-person or to-go

Posted November 22, 2022 at 9:45 am by

After oper­at­ing with out­door seat­ing last year, San Juan Island’s free com­mu­ni­ty Thanks­giv­ing din­ner — now in its 24th year — will fea­ture indoor din­ing at the Mullis Cen­ter for the first time since 2019. All com­mu­ni­ty mem­bers are wel­come to take part in the event, which runs from noon to 5 p.m. on Thursday.

The orga­niz­ers will also have to-go con­tain­ers avail­able for islanders who’d like to enjoy the meal but don’t wish to eat in-person.

This year’s menu includes roast turkey, dress­ing, green beans, mashed pota­toes, gravy, maple yams, sal­ad and many home­made pies. Every­thing is pre­pared and served by vol­un­teers — and it’s not too late to sign up to help.

With the clouds rolling by

Posted November 21, 2022 at 10:55 pm by

Turkey trot returns on Thursday

Posted November 21, 2022 at 9:59 pm by

For the 16th year, the 5K Thanks­giv­ing turkey trot takes place in Fri­day Har­bor. Reg­is­tra­tion opens at 8 a.m. out­side Fri­day Har­bor Suites at 680 Spring St. and the event starts at 9 a.m., rain or shine. The event has been espe­cial­ly pop­u­lar in recent years, so make sure to arrive early.

For par­tic­i­pants age 16 and old­er the entry fee is $5 and two cans of unex­pired food for peo­ple or ani­mals. If you’re under 16 it’s two cans of food and $2.

A por­tion of the pro­ceeds ben­e­fit the Fri­day Har­bor Food Bank and the Ani­mal Pro­tec­tion Soci­ety of Fri­day Harbor.

Town fundraiser for the Food Bank hits the halfway mark

Posted November 21, 2022 at 11:59 am by

The Town of Fri­day Har­bor shares news about its Novem­ber fundrais­er for the Food Bank,

Each Novem­ber the Town of Fri­day Har­bor asks that you help us sup­port an impor­tant com­mu­ni­ty orga­ni­za­tion — the Fri­day Har­bor Food Bank. The Food Bank spends over $10,000 each month serv­ing near­ly 750 house­holds and an aver­age of 1,475 indi­vid­u­als per month. In the last year they have pro­vid­ed near­ly 500,000 pounds of food to locals, and they do this entire­ly through com­mu­ni­ty donations.

Accord­ing to Food Bank Man­ag­er Rachelle Radon­s­ki, the need for your gen­er­ous dona­tions is even greater in these eco­nom­ic times. “The needs of the Food Bank patrons are ongo­ing and crit­i­cal,” she says. “Food costs con­tin­ue to rise, but the Food Bank is com­mit­ted to keep­ing healthy pro­duce and pro­teins avail­able. With the hol­i­days upon us, the num­ber in need will grow even larger.”

To assist with the Food Bank’s need for fund­ing, the Town is direct­ing all of the dona­tions from this month’s Har­bor Life Ring util­i­ty assis­tance pro­gram to the Food Bank. Each year island res­i­dents have answered the Town’s call to con­tribute, and the Town has matched these dona­tions. This year, the Town has increased that match to a total of $5,000.

$2,500 in dona­tions have already been received.

“You don’t have to be a Town res­i­dent to help us sup­port the Fri­day Har­bor Food Bank this Novem­ber,” says May­or Ray Jack­son. “Dona­tions to the Har­bor Life Ring pro­gram are open to any­one who wish­es to contribute.”

All dona­tions are tax-deductible. Con­tri­bu­tions from the pub­lic are accept­ed at the Town Hall Finance Depart­ment. Town of Fri­day Har­bor cus­tomers can also donate by way of the spe­cial line item on their month­ly util­i­ty bills.

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.