San Juan Island Update - serving San Juan Island, Friday Harbor, and Roche Harbor

Proud dad Tom Schultz shoots a post-play picture of Emily (left) and Alaina on the sumptuous set at the Community Theatre last night.

January 11, 2008

"The Man Who Came To Dinner" comes to town.....
Here's the deal: You have three (count 'em, three) chances to catch the best of high school drama in the state. This is the kind of production that'll make you believe in how great the kids we have around here are.

I went to last night's show so that I could speak with some authority about this, so let me tell ya - you'll love this play.

Part of the reason you'll dig it is because of the parts that it mixes together. There's the believable, long-suffering but loyal assistant played by Alaina Shultz, in her longest & most challenging role yet; the "famous actress" played by graduating Wynn Barnard, who topped her last two shows (one of the moms in Anne Frank & the show in the Ryan Smith Memorial deal last May) with her best performance at FHHS yet; Avery Adams as Bert the suitor, alternately bright & mixed up & ambitious & quick-witted.

But the show is led by the magnificent Theo Pratt, whose thundering presence is on stage most of the two and a half-hour show, and he commands it. I really didn't think he could do better than his interpretation of Otto Frank in last year's show - he had each evening's crowd in tears with his show-ending soliloquy then - but he soars in this production which would stretch the most experienced of actors. I don't believe there's anything this kid can't do.

Part of the reason the show is amazing is the way the ensemble does its job: reactions by Joyce King's nurse (Theo calls her "Miss Bedpan," and worse); Christian Carter's turn (he reminds us: "It's about ME"), which includes singing & playing the piano, got applause when he left the stage; Peter Duggin's inspired run as Banjo, Theo's wacky, Johnny Depp-inspired accomplice; and everyone else. That includes Charlotte & Whitney's costumes for the 1930s-era play, with 70 made for all the costume changes, and a spot-on job by the tech crew, who hit their cues & changed scenes like pros. Director Fred Yockers (who I believe has more energy than any three islanders I know, and possibly more love of and faith in kids) has another winner on his hands.

And the set....well, folks, it was the best high school set I've ever seen, anywhere, and ahead of most non-high school sets. See it, and you'll see what I'm talking about.

While you can see the post-show glow in the faces of Theo, Alaina, and Wynn (right), it was great to see the double standing ovation the kids got, and to hear people at intermission saying they were going to come back and see it again & bring a friend. Last night's show was nearly a full-house; these last three shows are certain to be sold-out, so get your tickets early.

I know I'd like to see it again.

Island Studios closes for a bit....
Claudia at Island Studios tells me her Great Remodel of 2008 has begun - she's open this weekend, then will close Monday-Thursday while Robert Strasser & his guys paint the ceiling, which will be an achievement of artistic proportions on its own, the way it is shaped & the way the lights hang. Wait & see - it'll be cool.

FHHS hosts home meet & roundball scheduled....
The Wolverines hosted their first home meet of the year last night, which offered a rare chance for locals to see our young wrestling team against LaConner. We have a couple more before the playoffs start - I'll keep you posted.

Meanwhile, tonight, Darrington comes visiting the boys & girls basketball team - another on-island game (fourth since last Thursday), which is great.

We're in a magazine....
Coastal Living has a bit about Lime Kiln as a cool place to hike - here's what they say.

When I woke up this morning my girlfriend asked me, "Did you sleep good?" I said "No, I made a few mistakes."
Steven Wright

January 10, 2008

They're out & about...
Jim Maya (Maya Charters) runs his whalewatching tours all year, which is why he saw these transients over near Sidney last week.

He's working on his boat for the rest of this month, and he tells me he will be back on the water in February.

Basketball's learning curve...
The FHHS girls had a nice comeback against LaConner that fell just four points short in the final minute, while the boys suffered their second loss in two games to a well-disciplined Braves team (we're now 7-3; they're 8-2, so they're no slouch, as a team.) It'll be fun to play them again next month - we'll be ready for 'em.

New trustee on the Board at the Library...
Tuesday night was the first meeting for new board member Marie Johansen (right)....besides her work with the County, she also makes quilted things and kits & sews: check out her website for some pretty cool stuff.

The Library is lucky to have grabbed her!

Bluebird of happiness...
If you want to know more about the Western Bluebird re-introduction project, drop by Pelindaba downtown at 7 tomorrow night.

The project is detailed here; Friday night's visit will review how it's all going.

The Hiyu - back again.....
Next Wednesday the Hiyu will take the Evergreen State's place on the interisland route for possibly as long as nearly three months, depending on drydock availability. Think ahead - the "little ferry that could" only holds 34 cars.....

The high school show is tonight (and a little name-dropping to go with it)....
Jan at the Community Theatre has the scoop on the show:

Don’t miss another stellar high school play directed by Fred Yockers: The Man Who Came to Dinner by Moss Hart and George S. Kaufman.

It opens tonight, Thursday, January 10, at 7:30 p.m. There are also shows set for Friday and Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 2:00 p.m.

Set in 1939, The Man Who Came to Dinner is what Fred calls a “golden kernel” from the hey-day of Broadway comedy. The set is incredible and the young actors are impressive, as many of them play characters much older than themselves. Get ready to laugh and enjoy this timeless gem full of absurd plot twists and eccentric characters.

Dozens of high school students are involved in the production. Here’s a list of who will grace the stage:

Parks Barnard, Jane Westmiller, Joyce King, Lydia Daniels, Sam Asher, Will Tranfo, Kate Hunter, Megan Brown, Catlyn Keyes, Alaina Schultz, Charlotte LaRiviere, Theo Pratt, Anna Gunnarsson, Avery Adams, Tristan Wood, Wynn Barnard, Kimberly Mapstead, Peter Duggins, Christian Carter, Katie Johnson, Caitlin McCauley, Emma Harley, Emily Schultz, Desi Whalen, Brittany Kan, Wilson Shubert, Matthew Kolowitz, Sam Gabler, Quinton Warfel, Sam Paul-Barette, Halla Warner, Ashley Lambright, Hayden Place, Oliver Strasser.

Tickets are on sale at the Box Office for $14 for adults and $7 for students, with $5 student RUSH available if there are seats left an hour before the performance. The Box Office is open from 11 to 4 pm today through Friday and from 11 to 2 pm on Saturday plus one hour before each show. You can also call 378-3210 during those times.

See ya there!

Dominique's Clothing - now you can get more....
Teri wrote to ask me to tell you that her 50% off sale has been extended - get over there & check it out!

The cool mailbox.....
The mailbox on the right on Geneste got a few notes (thanks, always, for writing!), including this note from John Bostrom:

That mailbox belongs to a really cool lady - Judy Moody. Her mom was Betty Gilson who passed away last year- another cool lady.

Last night's earthquake....
You didn't feel it 'cause it was only a's the story from the University of Washington.

All over the place, from the popular culture to the propaganda system, there is constant pressure to make people feel that they are helpless, that the only role they can have is to ratify decisions and to consume.
Noam Chomsky

January 9, 2008

Kid in the window....
When you walked by Griffin Bay Bookstore over the weekend, you may have thought the mannequin reading War & Peace in the window looked really real. Like, real.

That's 'cause it was....that's owner Laura Norris's son Graham doing the honors. I didn't ask how far he got in the book.

The play's the thing....
The high school's plays are better than most I've seen. Don't miss the show this Thursday-Sunday. See you there!

Ironic fact of the day.....
With all the attention on New Hampshire the past few days, here's the part they left out:
The slogan on New Hampshire license plates is "Live Free or Die." These license plates are manufactured by prisoners in the state prison in Concord.

Other note, since we're talking about primaries, did you know our primary here in Washington includes caucuses on February 9th & then primaries on the 19th...just after the so-called Super Tuesday with 22 primaries on the 5th?

Life has meaning only if one barters it day by day for something other than itself.
Antoine de Saint-Exupery

January 8, 2007

Basketball tonight....
LaConner comes visiting tonight, with the girls playing at 4:30pm and the boys at 6pm. See you there!

New islander....
I saw Anna Sakstrup (right) with new baby Paris at the grocery store over the weekend...Paris was a December baby & looks healthy & alert & ready to play roller hockey soon.

The high school play - it's this week!
This week the Friday Harbor High School Drama Club is presenting a classic American comedy, "The Man Who Came to Dinner." There are four performances, Thursday to Sunday, at the San Juan Community Theatre.

Experience Seattle's operas without leaving San Juan Island!
Corinne from the Benefit Players Theater says this is gonna be huge:

Puget Sound Concert Opera proudly presents a concert performance of Verdi's Il Trovatore with some of the Pacific Northwest's premier performers, including Friday Harbor soprano Corinne Stevens (San Juan Singers concert soloist, opera singer with Skagit Opera & San Juan Performing Arts Society)!

Come join us for an unforgettable evening of Verdi's masterpiece including the audience favorites: "Anvil Chorus", thrilling tenor aria " Di quella pira" and Leonora's show-stopping duet with Inez "Tacea la Notte". Cast includes David Barela, Robert W. Corl, Brandon Higa, Ralph Wells, Sharon Karsner, Corinne Stevens, Regina Thomas and coach & pianist Jay Rozendaal of Seattle Opera.

Performance at the San Juan Benefit Players Theater, Saturday January 12th at 2:00PM - one show only! As with all Benefit Players performances, admission is by donation.

Puget Sound Concert Opera appears courtesy of the San Juan Performing Arts Society. For further details, including story of the opera and information on the singers, please visit our website at

Seahawks move on in the playoffs...
You already knew that, if you're any kind of fan, of course. Here's the scene at Herb's last Saturday, where I watched the last quarter as they won so they can play the Packers this weekend.

On Saturday, January 12 at 5:30pm, there's a Native Plant Workshop at the San Juan Island Library. A presentation from the Washington State University (WSU) Master Gardeners. Learn what, when, why and where to buy native plants. Bring your gardening questions.

Getting us a hospital....
The San Juan Community Hospital folks are still working on getting things going...and they have a new tab on their website that's called "Updates" so you can see what they're doing...the latest one discusses a collaboration they're working up with PeaceHealth...check it out & stay current with the project.

In some mysterious way woods have never seemed to me to be static things. In physical terms, I move through them; yet in metaphysical ones, they seem to move through me.
John Fowles

January 7, 2007

Jump in feet first....
I got my feet & hands worked on by Laura Greenan (right) yesterday over at Lavendera Day Spa, and that was pretty cool.

Laura is a reflexologist who also offers other services (see her website for more), while Lavendera offers a full range of ways to make you feel good (here's their site.)

Makes a great gift. I checked for you. Good idea. Do it!

Basketball runs into tough Bellevue Christian squads...
Saturday the girls were overwhelmed by a possibly state-bound Vikings team, losing 60-something to twenty-something. Freshman Maggie Anderson (right, in the win over MVC on Thursday) and the forwards had trouble containing BC inside, and will look for greater success on Tuesday (LaConner) and Friday (Darrington) here at home.

Meanwhile, the boys placed their 7-1 record on the line with BC (now 11-1, their coach told me). It was great to watch our tenacious guys - against a quick & big (couple of 6'6" guys) opponent, we were within five or better going into the fourth quarter, when we trailed only 37-35.

Then the dam opened, and the Vikings outscored the Wolverines 17-4, and then coasted from there, although FHHS never quit, hustling & pressing till the clock ran out. It was a game to be proud of, and a game to build good things on.

Keep an eye on these guys.

If she's looks familiar, she probably is....
Yep, that's Katie English in the front desk photo on the Friday Harbor House website - Katie graduated last year & is a freshman at Pacific Luthern University this winter.

Helping the girls in the schools....
The Soroptimists have made a cool contribution at the's more from the prez-elect:

In December 2007, Soroptimist International of Friday Harbor donated the DVD, “Just Yell Fire” to the local schools.

Debbi Staehlin, President-Elect, made appointments with the administrators of the schools to present the DVDs and give brief information about the contents. “Just Yell Fire” was written by two high school girls, Dallas Jessup and Catherine Wehage, to empower girls to protect themselves. Guest stars are Evangeline Lilly and Josh Holloway. Also appearing are a police chief and self-defense coach. There are scenes depicting common situations young women could find themselves in, the bus stop, the ATM and the jogging trail are just a few examples. The scenes show examples of how to use self-defense techniques that are taught on the DVD. The hope is that the techniques will help our young women as they prepare to go out into the world.

There ARE dogs there, too....
When I told you late last week that cool things were happening at Downtown Dog, I had a picture of Lisa & a cat...enough people wrote in (2) that I thought I'd prove to you they have pups, too - that's my friend Charlotte with the furry evidence thereof.

Mary's back!
Good to hear - Mary Roberts wrote in to let us know she's back on the island:

Hi Ian, Just wanted everyone to know that I am back on the island after a year with the Regis Salon in Bellingham and working at Fingerpaints with owner Christi Napier. Our address is 849 Spring Street, next to Curves. New clients and walk-ins are welcome or call for a appointment – Mary 317-1632, and Christy 298-0337. Thanks! Mary Roberts

Here's a song for you.....
Probably my favorite verse in this song is the one that's here, but not on the original album:

The years are rolling by me, they are rocking evenly
I'm older than I once was, but younger than I'll be
That's not unusual...
It's isn't strange - after changes upon changes
We are more or less the same
After changes we are more or less the same.

Remember Laura Bauer?
She has an opening in New York this week, if you can make it.

Here's more about her art, and her (right). Laura immersed herself in acrylic painting, and found that it had the potential to captivate and soothe the soul. The ensuing paintings are a dance of color and pattern, where the array of layers come forth and recede in rhythmic pulses. Her works have been exhibited around California and Washington State and she has recently acquired representation in New York. She lives and works in the San Francisco Bay area.

Here's a cool mailbox I saw over on Geneste last week....
And yes, that's Barbie driving, baby.

Well, now....
Leesa over at Coldwell Banker says I might wanna tell you this is coming up, if you're wondering how things are going with wells on the island:

Coldwell Banker San Juan Islands, Inc. is sponsoring a “Wells in San Juan County” seminar free to the public on Thursday, January 17th at the San Juan Island Fire Department located on Mullis Street in Friday Harbor. Local industry specialists will offer a presentation and lead a question and answer session for the topic.

Al Mauldin, of Mauldin’s Well Service on San Juan Island will address the new regulations, drilling of wells, water testing, well maintenance and the different types of systems. Mark Tompkins from SJ Heath Department will also be in attendance to field any questions.

Everyone is encouraged to attend this highly informative session. The class will be from 6:00 to 8:00 pm. Seating is limited so RSVP early to 378-2101.

Marilyn moves up at Islanders Bank...
I hear that Marilyn's been promoted - here's more from our friends at Islanders Bank:

Dick Kneipp, CEO and Bob Coleman, President of Islanders Bank, are pleased to announce the promotion of Marilyn Corrie to the position of Assistant Vice President and Controller of Islanders Bank.  Marilyn joined Islanders Bank eight years ago most recently serving as Assistant Controller of the Bank. 

Marilyn has been actively involved in the local banking community for many years, having begun her banking career with the former San Juan County Bank.

It is a sobering thought that when Mozart was my age, he had been dead for two years.
Tom Lehrer

Ian Byington sings
The information here is simply stuff we here at By Design think is important around Friday Harbor or on San Juan Island.

Some of it is news, some of it is old news, and all are just things we wanted to mention, with most of it about the things that make living here great.

There will be more next week, if anything happens.

Ian Byington

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