Deeply concerned

Posted May 3, 2022 at 7:46 pm by

Carolyn Jewett running for re-election for District Court Judge

Posted May 3, 2022 at 7:36 pm by

Incum­bent San Juan Coun­ty Dis­trict Court Judge Car­olyn Jew­ett has announced her inten­tion to run for re-election.

“Dur­ing my first term, I gained a lot of expe­ri­ence fig­ur­ing out what ‘access to jus­tice’ real­ly means,” said Jew­ett in her can­di­da­cy announce­ment. “The COVID-19 pan­dem­ic turned our judi­cial sys­tem on its head and forced us all to adapt. I have been hon­ored to work side by side with our oth­er coun­ty depart­ments, as well as col­lab­o­rat­ing with judges across the state at all court lev­els, to ensure our com­mu­ni­ty has mean­ing­ful access to the courts despite emer­gency conditions.”

Jew­ett is a first-term judge of the Dis­trict Court, which is the low­er court in San Juan Coun­ty. It has juris­dic­tion over mis­de­meanor crimes, small claims, infrac­tions, name change peti­tions, pro­tec­tion order peti­tions, and civ­il law­suits under $100,000.

“Despite the chal­lenges we still face, the pan­dem­ic has giv­en courts oppor­tu­ni­ties for change and inno­va­tion statewide, and we want to keep that momen­tum going,” Jew­ett said. “It is crit­i­cal that we keep work­ing togeth­er to pro­vide fair, impar­tial admin­is­tra­tion of the law. I look for­ward to con­tin­u­ing this work as your Dis­trict Court Judge.” 

Dis­trict Court Judge is one of eight posi­tions up for a vote in the Nov. 8 gen­er­al elec­tion. The Coun­ty Coun­cil seat for Dis­trict 3 (Lopez and Shaw), Asses­sor, Audi­tor, Clerk, Pros­e­cut­ing Attor­ney, Sher­iff, and Trea­sur­er are also open in 2022. The pri­ma­ry elec­tion for any posi­tion with three or more can­di­dates takes place Aug. 2.

Island Senior: Memories of lower Spring Street

Posted May 3, 2022 at 1:38 pm by

Fri­day Har­bor suf­fered a great loss recent­ly when fire took some of our most cher­ished his­toric build­ings, shock­ing­ly gone overnight. While we reach out to help those whose lives and liveli­hoods were irrev­o­ca­bly impact­ed by the loss, once again, whether we want to or not, we face the per­sis­tent life les­son of the inevitabil­i­ty of change.

As an old-timer, I’d like to share a glimpse into my own mem­o­ries of the oth­er side of low­er Spring Street, a streetscape already rel­e­gat­ed to mem­o­ry. Whether by fire or by the relent­less crush of devel­op­ment we have lost a great deal over the years. In my life­time this whole side of low­er Spring Street has changed entirely.

Join me then to revis­it the loca­tion of my first real job at the Fri­day Har­bor Cafe that in the late 1960s sat right smack-dab in the mid­dle of that block. Scribner’s Mar­ket (lat­er Whitey’s) was on the upper cor­ner and below was the Low­er Tav­ern and Moose Lodge. Con­tin­ue Reading

Tighter COVID protocols returning to Peace Island Medical Center

Posted May 3, 2022 at 9:46 am by

Peace­Health shares news about revised vis­i­tor pro­to­cols now in place at Peace Island Med­ical Center.

With COVID-19 trans­mis­sion rates in San Juan Coun­ty sig­nif­i­cant­ly increas­ing, Peace­Health Peace Island Med­ical Cen­ter and the adja­cent Peace­Health Med­ical Group clin­ic will be scal­ing back the num­ber of vis­i­tors per­mit­ted inside our facilities.

Effec­tive this Tues­day, May 3, only one vis­i­tor or sup­port per­son per 24 hours will be allowed in our facil­i­ties. The no-vis­i­tor pol­i­cy remains in place for COVID-19 patients, with some exceptions.

Vis­i­tors are still required to wear a Lev­el 3 (blue) sur­gi­cal mask in the med­ical cen­ter and clin­ics; those are avail­able at all entrances for free. Vis­i­tors may also choose to wear their own KN95 or N95 masks if they prefer.

In addi­tion, vol­un­teers will not be allowed in the Emer­gency Depart­ment, and will be allowed only lim­it­ed encoun­ters with patients.

Peace­Health facil­i­ties in What­com Coun­ty are imple­ment­ing the same pro­to­cols, also effec­tive May 3.

In align­ment with oth­er Wash­ing­ton state health­care orga­ni­za­tions, Peace­Health is using the CDC’s trans­mis­sion map to guide us on next steps in COVID-19 response in our com­mu­ni­ties. We know how impor­tant vis­i­ta­tion is for our patients and their loved ones, and we hope to be able to lift these restric­tions as soon as pos­si­ble. We appre­ci­ate the public’s patience and understanding.

Notes from the Island — May 3

Posted May 3, 2022 at 8:45 am by

  • Fed­er­al charges were filed on Mon­day against the per­son sus­pect­ed of set­ting fire to four Fri­day Har­bor build­ings on April 7. Dwight Hen­line of Whid­bey Island faces a min­i­mum of five years in prison and a max­i­mum of 20 years for the crime.
  • High school base­ball and fast­pich return to the dia­mond with dou­ble­head­ers against LaCon­ner this after­noon at Linde. The first game starts at 4:45 p.m., the sec­ond at 6:15 p.m.
  • Sum­mer fer­ry reser­va­tions open this morning.
  • Mark Mad­sen retained his posi­tion on the OPALCO Board of Direc­tors in the recent elec­tion, receiv­ing 47 per­cent of the vote. Jes­sa Madosky won 28 per­cent of the vote and Steven Car­leton 25 per­cent. Total turnout for the Board elec­tion was 19.24 per­cent of OPAL­CO’s membership.
  • Take a look at the lat­est pro­mo­tion­al video for the San Juan Com­mu­ni­ty The­atre’s pre­sen­ta­tion of Rodgers & Ham­mer­stein’s Cin­derel­la. It opens in just over a week on Fri­day, May 13.
  • WSU San Juan Coun­ty Exten­sion is host­ing a field walk on Mon­day, May 16 where they will dis­cuss their ongo­ing research into the impact of organ­ic fer­til­iz­er and no-till seed­ing on for­age pro­duc­tiv­i­ty, qual­i­ty, and species com­po­si­tion. The walk takes place at the Beaver­ton Val­ley Pre­serve. Pre-reg­is­tra­tion is required.

Have some­thing to share with the Island? Whether the news is big or small, let us know!

Don’t even ask

Posted May 2, 2022 at 10:12 pm by

County Council agenda for May 3

Posted May 2, 2022 at 8:58 pm by

The San Juan Coun­ty Coun­cil will hold a reg­u­lar meet­ing on Tues­day, May 3 at 9 a.m. Items up for dis­cus­sion or action include:

  • Increase school-based men­tal health bud­get con­tract for San Juan Island School Dis­trict for the 2021–22 school year
  • Con­sid­er adopt­ing an ordi­nance to adopt tech­ni­cal cor­rec­tions to the San Juan Coun­ty Char­ter regard­ing Coun­cil res­i­den­cy districts
  • Road fund­ing
  • Code of conduct
  • Approve Res­o­lu­tion 4.20.2022 sup­port­ing Sno­homish, What­com, Island, San Juan and Skag­it (SWISS) region­al part­ner­ship with the Wash­ing­ton State Asso­ci­a­tion of Counties

The Coun­cil will also hold three exec­u­tive ses­sions — one to dis­cuss lit­i­ga­tion or poten­tial lit­i­ga­tion with legal coun­sel, one to dis­cuss real prop­er­ty acqui­si­tion or lease, and one to eval­u­ate the qual­i­fi­ca­tions of an appli­cant for pub­lic employ­ment or to review the per­for­mance of a pub­lic employee.

You can view the live stream of the meet­ing online or attend in per­son at the Coun­cil Leg­isla­tive Hear­ing Room. To make a pub­lic com­ment, sign up pri­or to 9 a.m. on May 3.

Sweater weather

Posted May 2, 2022 at 7:30 pm by

With aver­age tem­per­a­tures more than ten degrees below nor­mal, it has been an unsea­son­ably cool April. And if you’ve been lay­er­ing on wool sweaters, you’re not alone. Cady, the lamb, has been too.

It was shear­ing day when we vis­it­ed Oak Knoll Farm and the barn was noisy and bustling with humans, sheep, a guardian lla­ma, and a ded­i­cat­ed sheep­dog. The new­ly born lambs are close to their moth­ers, secur­ing their bond and learn­ing each other’s calls. With long, wob­bly legs and huge, fluffy ears, it’s hard to get much cuter than a new­born lamb. Except when you put a sweater on one of course.

Sarah Pope and her fam­i­ly took over the his­toric farm in 2017. Estab­lished in the 1970s by Joan Roberts, Oak Knoll and the flock of North Coun­try Cheviot Sheep had dwin­dled when Sarah and her fam­i­ly were called to take it over. It was a steep learn­ing curve becom­ing shep­herds, but they have revived the flock and now have around 120 Cheviots, Finn Sheep, and Finn crosses.

The lambs don’t always have to wear a sweater, Sarah told me. But Cady, named after Cady Moun­tain here on San Juan Island, was born small and need­ed a lit­tle extra care to make sure she main­tained a good body tem­per­a­ture her first few days of life. I asked Sarah how to find a knit­ting pat­tern for a lamb sweater. She told me she pret­ty much invent­ed this one but you can find many pat­terns for dogs that will fit a lamb. Alter­ing an old sweat­shirt can also work and two babies born Thurs­day night donned this style. Con­tin­ue Reading

U.S. Representative Rick Larsen visits Friday Harbor; addresses marine infrastructure, cost of living, affordable housing, and the war in Ukraine

Posted May 2, 2022 at 11:47 am by

Con­gress­man Rick Larsen and his staffers vis­it­ed Fri­day Har­bor on Sat­ur­day to meet with local gov­ern­ment and non­prof­it lead­ers and hold the first San Juan Coun­ty event for the 2022 cam­paign cycle.

After arriv­ing late due to a delayed fer­ry sail­ing, Larsen first met with Fri­day Har­bor town offi­cials to learn about the impacts of last mon­th’s arson on down­town. He lat­er dis­cussed afford­able hous­ing issues with the Oppor­tu­ni­ty Coun­cil, San Juan Coun­ty’s Depart­ment of Health & Com­mu­ni­ty Ser­vices, and the San Juan Com­mu­ni­ty Home Trust. Larsen then met with con­stituents at a 2022 cam­paign kick-off event held at Fri­day Har­bor House.

The San Juan Update caught up with Larsen to dis­cuss a hand­ful of issues of con­cern to island con­stituents, includ­ing marine infra­struc­ture, the future of the expand­ed child tax cred­it, leg­isla­tive pri­or­i­ties for the rest of 2022, infla­tion, the war in Ukraine, and the state of bipar­ti­san­ship in Wash­ing­ton, D.C. Con­tin­ue Reading

Notes from the Island — May 2

Posted May 2, 2022 at 6:00 am by

  • The Spring Flea & Craft Mar­ket is look­ing for ven­dors — food ven­dors, crafters and artists, com­mu­ni­ty orga­ni­za­tions look­ing to fundraise, fam­i­ly and friends clean­ing house. The event takes place on Sat­ur­day, May 14 at the Fair­grounds. Learn more at the Fair web­site.
  • Pick­up ulti­mate fris­bee hap­pens tonight at 5:30 p.m. at Linde Park.
  • Tomor­row night is fam­i­ly bin­go night at the library. It starts at 6:30 p.m., no reg­is­tra­tion required. The event is spon­sored by the library, the Fam­i­ly Resource Cen­ter, and Sorop­ti­mist Inter­na­tion­al of Fri­day Har­bor as part of Nation­al Screen Free Week.
  • This mon­th’s bird walk at the San Juan Island Sculp­ture Park takes place on Wednes­day from 8 to 10 a.m.
  • Blue Water Bar & Grill is now open for break­fast every day from 9 a.m. to noon.
  • The Amer­i­can Legion is host­ing a spaghet­ti feed and dessert auc­tion on Fri­day from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. They’re rais­ing funds in sup­port of sum­mer tour­na­ments for the Babe Ruth base­ball team they spon­sor. It’s $25 per plate or $45 for two. Food and treats are pro­vid­ed by Stacey’s Cater­ing. You can pur­chase tick­ets in advance or at the door, and curb­side pick-up is available.

Have some­thing to share with the Island? Whether the news is big or small, let us know!

A Redwing Blackbird hunting for goodies on the split rail fence along South Beach

Posted April 30, 2022 at 8:51 pm by

Pho­to cred­it: Brad Pillow

Guided by community input, Visitors Bureau identifies messaging priorities

Posted April 30, 2022 at 2:50 pm by

The San Juan Islands Vis­i­tors Bureau pro­vides an update about mes­sag­ing efforts being planned in response to feed­back they received dur­ing pub­lic meet­ings ear­li­er this year.

The San Juan Islands Vis­i­tors Bureau host­ed three pub­lic Tourism Talk meet­ings ear­li­er this spring as an oppor­tu­ni­ty for res­i­dents to share con­cerns and ideas about tourism in 2022 and beyond as we con­tin­ue to recov­er from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Com­mon themes emerged from all three meet­ings: traf­fic, water, trash, and crowd­ing in parks. After con­sid­er­a­tion and con­ver­sa­tions with addi­tion­al stake­hold­ers, the fol­low­ing are our first vis­i­tor man­age­ment mes­sag­ing priorities:

  • Coor­di­nate with San Juan Coun­ty for the annu­al dis­tri­b­u­tion of the Stew­ard­ship Guide to island accom­mo­da­tions, includ­ing Airbnb/VRBO, and explore place­ment on Wash­ing­ton State Fer­ries and Ken­more Air.
  • Expand pro­mo­tion of car-free trav­el options (i.e., shut­tles, bike rentals, etc.) to help reduce traf­fic and park­ing issues.
  • Col­lab­o­rate with Parks, the Land Bank, and Preser­va­tion Trust to cre­ate an all-islands parks map with trails, bike racks, park­ing, acces­si­bil­i­ty, etc., and con­tent about best vis­i­ta­tion prac­tices (i.e., leave no trace).
  • Col­lab­o­rate with the Coun­ty, Plas­tic Free Sal­ish Sea, and island recy­cling ser­vices to cre­ate effec­tive mes­sag­ing about reduc­ing waste, plas­tics, ‘wish­ful’ recy­cling, etc.

The Sus­tain­able Tourism Man­age­ment Plan com­mu­ni­ty meet­ings process will address these and oth­er issues raised like hous­ing, vaca­tion rentals, and labor. This process, now under­way, will out­line the shared com­mu­ni­ty vision, goals, and imple­men­ta­tion mea­sures to dri­ve sus­tain­able tourism in the San Juan Islands.

Com­mu­ni­ty par­tic­i­pa­tion is essen­tial for a robust dia­logue regard­ing ways to thought­ful­ly guide tourism as we bal­ance our dynam­ic tourism econ­o­my with the qual­i­ty of our envi­ron­ment, qual­i­ty of res­i­dent life, and qual­i­ty vis­i­tor edu­ca­tion and expe­ri­ences. Vis­i­tors Bureau board and staff have advo­cat­ed for this plan for ten years and applied for the lodg­ing tax grant that is fund­ing the con­sul­tants and plan­ning process. Find out more and RSVP for pub­lic Zoom meet­ings dur­ing the weeks of May 9 and 16 at

The return of fawn season

Posted April 30, 2022 at 9:34 am by

Wolf Hol­low Wildlife Reha­bil­i­ta­tion Cen­ter shares some advice about how to help fawns on the island this spring.

There may be few­er deer in the San Juans than last year, but quite a few fawns will still be born in the next few weeks. You may come across a tiny fawn curled up in the grass in your yard or hid­den under a bush when you walk in the woods. It will prob­a­bly be all on its own with no mom in sight, but that’s per­fect­ly normal.

If you find a fawn, the best thing to do is qui­et­ly move away and leave it in peace so its mom can return lat­er. Please don’t get close or touch the fawn.

For the first cou­ple of weeks, a fawn’s legs are too weak to fol­low mom through the woods, so its job is to lie still and qui­et, cam­ou­flaged by its spot­ted coat. Mom may leave for six to eight hours before return­ing to feed her fawn and per­haps move it to a dif­fer­ent spot near­by. By the time they are about three weeks old, their legs are stronger, and they can trav­el longer dis­tances, but fawns are still not as fast as mom. This means they are vul­ner­a­ble, not only to nat­ur­al preda­tors but also to our dogs, so this is an espe­cial­ly good time to keep your dog under con­trol and not let it run loose.

You may occa­sion­al­ly find a tiny fawn lying curled up in the mid­dle of the road. This usu­al­ly hap­pens when a new fawn is slow­ly fol­low­ing mom across the hard sur­face and a car sud­den­ly appears. Mom leaps off into the bush­es and the fawn instinc­tive­ly drops to the ground and freezes. If the fawn is unhurt, slide your hand under its bel­ly, gen­tly car­ry it a few feet off the side of the road and leave it in a safe, shel­tered spot. Mom is prob­a­bly near­by, wait­ing for you to leave so she can return for her baby.

If you are con­cerned that a fawn may be injured or sep­a­rat­ed from mom, please call Wolf Hol­low Wildlife Reha­bil­i­ta­tion Cen­ter at 360–378-5000. We’d be hap­py to help you work out what’s going on or bring the young­ster in for care if it tru­ly needs help.

Notes from the Island — April 30

Posted April 30, 2022 at 6:00 am by

  • Some time today M/V Yaki­ma will be towed to the Dako­ta Creek ship­yard in Ana­cortes, where crews will work to repair dam­age sus­tained when the Yaki­ma’s anchor unex­pect­ed­ly deployed ear­li­er this week. The ves­sel is expect­ed to be replaced some time this after­noon by M/V Kalee­tan, which must first be repo­si­tioned from the Edmonds-Kingston route.
  • The peak sea­son sur­charge for sin­gle vehi­cle fares starts on Sun­day and runs through Sept. 30. Pas­sen­ger fares and mul­ti-ride tick­ets are not sub­ject to peak sea­son charges.
  • High school base­ball cruised to an easy win at Con­crete on Fri­day, knock­ing off the Lions 16–1. The Wolver­ines close out their reg­u­lar sea­son with three games next week, includ­ing a dou­ble­head­er at home against LaCon­ner on Tues­day and a road game at Orcas Island on Thursday.
  • Here’s the line­up for today’s farm­ers mar­ket, which runs from 9:30 a.m to 1 p.m.
  • Camas Designs is hold­ing a Flow­ers for Fire Relief flo­ral sale to ben­e­fit Crows Nest Cof­fee’s fire relief fund. It takes place today from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Mike’s Cafe and Wine Bar.
  • Core Fit­ness is host­ing an open house today from noon to 2 p.m. at 777 Mullis Street, across the park­ing lot from Bak­ery San Juan and the Food Co-op. You can enter to win a 30-day unlim­it­ed group class membership.
  • St. David’s Epis­co­pal Church is host­ing a free con­cert tomor­row fea­tur­ing works from C.P.E. Bach, Gio­van­ni Per­golisi and Richard Lind. Any pro­ceeds from dona­tions at the door will be giv­en to the Fri­day Har­bor Food Bank and the Fam­i­ly Resource Center.
  • The San Juan Island Gar­den Club meets on Tues­day at the Mullis Cen­ter at 1 p.m. This mon­th’s fea­tured speak­er is Kari Kos­ki of Kar­i’s Island Elixirs.

Have some­thing to share with the Island? Whether the news is big or small, let us know!

A good day to catch some rays

Posted April 29, 2022 at 9:03 pm by

San Juan Island Yacht Club to host opening day parade and brunch on May 8

Posted April 29, 2022 at 7:55 pm by

On Sun­day, May 8, the San Juan Island Yacht Club will ring in the new boat­ing sea­son by host­ing an open­ing day boat parade and Moth­er’s Day brunch. Both events are open to the community.

“Our theme is Back to the Future and we see the event as an oppor­tu­ni­ty to come togeth­er as a com­mu­ni­ty as in days past,” says SJIYC Fleet Cap­tain Glen Margolis.

The event kicks off with brunch from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the San Juan Island Yacht Club, locat­ed just above the mari­na. Ves­sels will gath­er for the parade around 2 p.m. at Ship­yard Cove. The parade itself will kick off some time around 2:30 p.m., fol­low­ing the fer­ry departure.

Brunch tick­ets are $20 and can be pur­chased online or at the club. There’s no cost to take part in the parade, but advance reg­is­tra­tion is required.