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

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January 23, 2008

The long commute is over.....
I've always admired the way some folks make it work out, to make things so they can live here on the island. After a decade of commuting to Portland, Barry Jacobson (right) finally has things set up so he can be here all the time, which is cool because he's so involved in the community. Here's more from Robin:

That determined and creative husband of mine Barry Jacobson is ending his ten year, two state weekly commute tomorrow (Thursday). That’s the day he drives north for the last time from Portland to Friday Harbor on his weekly return to home from work. For the last ten years, he’s gone back out on the red eye ferry each Monday morning, after spending his weekends doing things like serving on the Friends of the Library board, volunteering with me at Soroptimist community fundraisers and loving island life.

He has driven I-5 through an earthquake, three floods, tornadoes, snow and countless hours of torrential rain. But no more, now that he has retired from one job at Kaiser Permanente as a psychologist and clinic director. His other job is his mental health therapy practice, which continues in Friday Harbor. So he’s not retiring, only transitioning to our dream of having him here without the weekly commute to Oregon.

Sunrise this morning over Griffin Bay, coming up over Lopez Island across the way.

Camp Nor'wester - find out more.....
The good folks from Camp Nor'wester on Johns Island are coming to show a film & tell you more about the camp that's been going since 1935...the show is at 7pm at the middle school commons on Thursday night. If you've been thinking about a cool place to send your kids for summer camp, this is a good place to start!

Movies can and do have tremendous influence in shaping young lives in the realm of entertainment towards the ideals and objectives of normal adulthood.
Walt Disney

January 22, 2008

Sunny days....
Hope you saw the full moon rise last night, and hope you got out to play yesterday!

Poetry & Spoken Word....
I sure enjoyed the high school Poetry Slam last Friday at the Library....this Friday, the regular poetry reading is back. Join host Tom Odegard in front of the Library fireplace for readings by guest poets George Smith & Mike Vouri. An open-mike period will follow - bring your work to read & share!

Mason can still knock it down....
I know you've heard it before - Mason Williams can still play the guitar like a champ - here's Classical Gas, played with the Umpqua Symphony in Roseburg, Oregon back in September '06...see whatcha think (click here to see the 1960s version from the Smothers Brothers Show.)

Author/Illustrator James Owen at Griffin Bay Bookstore - Wednesday, January 23....
Laura at GB says this is a really special event - here's more:

Award winning author and illustrator James A. Owen will appear at Griffin Bay Bookstore on Wednesday, January 23 at 4pm.  Owen will draw while speaking about his new book The Search for the Red Dragon, the second book in a fantasy series for young adults entitled The Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica, published by Simon and Schuster.  His first book, Here, There Be Dragons won numerous awards. The third book in the series is already underway and entitled The Indigo King

Owen personalizes each signed book with an illustration. Here's more....

Another way to get involved....
The Chamber of Commerce holds monthly forums to discuss issues, plans & solutions related to what's going on downtown in Friday Harbor, and you're invited. Here's more from the Chamber's Debbie Pigman:

The Chamber Downtown Forum - mark your calendar! The San Juan Island Chamber of Commerce is holding its next Chamber Downtown Forum meeting on Thursday, January 24, at 8:30am at the Best Western. The Chamber Downtown Forum program provides an opportunity for those with interests in the Town of Friday Harbor - employers, employees, owners, and other community members – to communicate.

What concerns do you have? What ideas do you have? What questions do you have? Bring these with you on Thursday and we will discuss and, as appropriate, determine an action plan. No concerns, ideas or questions? By all means, join us to learn and provide your input!

For more information, contact the chamber office, 360 378-5240 or
Potry slam 25th

K-9 Carnival Seeking Vendors....
Sally at Island Rec is planning already for this March happening:

Island Rec’s second annual K-9 Carnival is scheduled for Sunday afternoon March 30, 2008.  After an amazing successful event last year where over 300 people and 100 dogs participated in this fun, playful event for dogs and their people it is back for a second year.  In addition to games, contests and demonstrations, dog related businesses are on hand providing information and services.  If you are a business that would like the opportunity to reach hundreds of folks who have a passion for dogs you’ll want to participate!  Contact Sally Thomsen at Island Rec, 378-4953 for more information about becoming part of this terrific community event! 

War is the greatest plague that can affect humanity; it destroys religion, it destroys states, it destroys families. Any scourge is preferable to it.
Martin Luther, 500 years ago

Looking out over Friday Harbor - that's Shaw Island's green trees (and our breakwater,
here in the marina), with Orcas Island's mountains behind, snowcapped on Sunday
afternoon's windy, cold, sunny afternoon.

Januray 21, 2008

Remembering Martin....
It's hard to believe it's been nearly 40 years since he left us, but I'm pretty sure that if he were here, he would be reminding us that there is much work left to be done.

The night before a bullet was to silence him, Dr. King comments that he knows he may "not make it to the end" of a long life. In the little film clip below from that last night, I hope you feel his bravery, his determination, his love for life & freedom, as he faced daily personal threats on his existence; I hope we can stand taller hearing his words & his energy, as we fight against the forces that remain in the world that enslave & disenfranchise & hate.

I heard that Norman Reynolds passed away last soon as I hear more about memorial arrangements, I'll let you know. He'll be missed.....

Have we not come to such an impasse in the modern world that we must love our enemies - or else? The chain reaction of evil - hate begetting hate, wars producing more wars - must be broken, or else we shall be plunged into the dark abyss of annihilation.
Martin Luther King, Jr.

January 19-20, 2008

Basketball rolls on.....
Last night, cross-the-water rivals Orcas came visiting FHHS, and the Viking boys ran into a buzzsaw as FHHS led by 25 before coasting to a 53-33 win.

The opportunistic Wolverines had allowed only nine by the half, and turned the second half into a pressure drill with a lot of players getting a lot on time on the floor.

Challenging every shot (as you can see with Tommy Fowler, Jordan Nash (33), and Pablo Lopez (40) closing in on the Orcas shooter), Friday Harbor is now 10-4, including Tuesday's 10-point win over Shoreline Christian, with a week off till next Friday's home game with Concrete.

Meanwhile, the FHHS girls continue to play teams close - they lost to a very tough 12-1 Shoreline Christian squad by only 11 on Tuesday. Friday was more of the same, with the seesaw game with the Vikings tied with a minute and a half to go at 35-35, but Orcas nailed ket FTs at the end to pull away with a 41-37 heartbreaker over the never-say-die Wolverines.

The girls won the hearts of the crowd with their scrappy play and aggressive offense (that's freshman Maggie Anderson attacking the hoop in the fourth quarter), and hope for a better result next time.

With reports of whooping cough breaking out over on Orcas (see the report in the San Juan Islander - over 40 cases reported), it was nice to see the visitors weren't coughing at all, and the only sound of sniffling was San Juanderers with our snizzles. We're all hoping they get a handle on the coughing over there - that's tough stuff.

The Father-Daughter Dance is coming!
Papas - hurry up and ask your favorite gal to go! Abby at Island Rec says it's just around the corner (here are about 65 photos from last year's dance - see whom you know! Like Fred & Jade at right....):

The Third Annual Father-Daughter Dance will be on Feb. 8th. This is a chance for girls and women of all ages to spend a night out with their fathers or significant male figure in their lives.

Tickets are $20 per couple, $6 for each additional daughter. Stop by Island Rec’s office today to purchase your tickets! Questions? Call 378-4953.  

Check Your Driver's License....
Somebody sent me this to share with you - see if you're in there:

Now you can see anyone's Driver's License on the Internet, including your own! Thanks Homeland Security! I definitely removed mine. I suggest you do the same.

Go to this web site and check it out. Just enter your name, city and state to see if yours is on file. After your license comes on the screen, click the box marked, "Please Remove." This will remove it from public viewing, but not from law enforcement.

Mullis Community Senior Center fundraiser!
It's next week, so make plans now:

Make your reservations now for the Saturday, January 26 fundraising concert by Devorah with sumptuous banquet by Farhad at 7:00. Devorah will present a musical history of her various styles including original compositions from her last three years’ performances in Seattle and New York.

Tickets are $50 each and the show will be great whether you can make it or not! Call 378-2677 for information or stop by the Mullis Center to pick them up and help fund the programs of the Senior Center.

The most important single ingredient in the formula of success is knowing how to get along with people.
Theodore Roosevelt

January 18, 2008

Facelift ...
When you swing by Island Studios, it'll sure look different - Claudia had the ceiling painted this week (it's black now - good effect), and has decided to go ahead & paint the walls since everything's all a bit scattered anyway. She tells me she hopes to be done by Monday - next time you stroll by, check it out!

Friendship needs no words - it is solitude delivered from the anguish of loneliness.
Dag Hammarskjold

January 17, 2008

Endangered whales put even more at risk.....
Yesterday the administration set aside rules made to protect whales from the use of mid-range sonar by our Navy...even though there have been guidelines/laws set in place by Congress & a court ruling in support of prohibiting the use of sonar around whales, the action by the administration overrides all that.

The science has shown this is harming the animals.

In 2003, the last time the Navy used it here, Tom Averna reported to me that he was out on the water when the tests were being done. He saw frightened marine mammals, including minkes, swimming frantically to escape the sound, and dead Dall's porpoises were later found afterwards. Here's more in the Seattle P-I, this morning.

This is, simply, a rotten deal for the whales.

Music tomorrow at the Community Theatre.....
The Dunton Sisters are coming to town tomorrow night with their bluegrass band...every time these talented folks come to the island, they're a big hit. During their Friday Harbor appearance, Jen (guitar) and Bev (mandolin) will be accompanied by their mother Gae on string bass, Michael Savatgy on banjo and Bryan Thurber on fiddle.  The sisters have a new CD, “Singing in my Heart.” Here's more, on the Theatre's page.

The warmup act for the evening is Spoonshine Duo, whom you might remember sang at the Lavender Festival last summer. I sure enjoyed them then, and so did my friend Frankie the minke whale scientist, who wrote me from Vancouver:

I will also add that Spoonshine is a great band that I have seen a number of times both on island over the last few summers and also at the 2007 summer Meltdown music festival. Highly recommended! Cheers, Frankie

Song for today.....
Sometimes on a grey, drizzly day you just gotta have a song to go with it - here's my favorte Cat Stevens song, from "Harold & Maude," with this guy lip-syching it (I don't think there's film of CS singing it, that I know of....). Happy Thursday to you!

January 16, 2008

Sports update at FHHS....
It was cool to see the gym full (if I had a wider lens on the camera, you'd see the crowd from end to end!) at last night's wrestling meet...that's Conner Johns taking on his opponent from Concrete...although we had a tough time (Concrete has at least a couple of state-contenders), the crowd was grateful for the chance to see our guys & gals here at home. On the San Juan Islander, Matt just posted his pix & story from last week's match, which includes the story of Lindsey Banry winning her first match with a boy - check it out!

Meanwhile, the girls and boys basketball teams ran into a buzzsaw at Nooksack Valley on Monday - the girls lost 51-32, after being down only 6-4 after one quarter. Here's more from the Bellingham Herald.

Then, in the boys' game, they (8-4) led 16-11 after one only to fall 57-45 to the Pioneers (8-4) on their road trip to's more (with a gallery of photos) from the Herald.

"It is a question of discipline," the little prince told me. "When you've
finished washing and dressing each morning,you must tend your planet."
Antoine de Saint-Exupery.

New paramedic joins the island team....
Alan from the EMS tells me we have a new paramedic on the island, who will be introduced at tonight's EMS Board meeting at 5:30pm:

Ryan Nelson has been hired by San Juan Island EMS, effective January 1, as a paramedic. Ryan is returning to the Island, where he first served as an EMT in 1997. He will alternate with Jim Ricks and Weyshawn Koons as the primary response paramedic and participate in providing all other EMS services.

“Adding Ryan as our third paramedic will provide a greater response capability during peak seasons. It will also allow for longer distance, paramedic transports,” said EMS Chief Jim Cole. “We’re very glad to welcome Ryan back to San Juan Island EMS.”

A committee from EMS, the Inter Island Medical Center and the Hospital District Board conducted a nationwide search to fill this new paramedic position. Eleven applications were received and Ryan was selected from among three final interviewees. He joins EMS after spending the last five years as a paramedic with Skagit County Medic One.

“I am excited to be returning to the San Juans and to EMS as a full time medic,” said Ryan. “I really like the idea of community-based medical care and the extended, advanced care that is inherent in the San Juans.”

San Juan Island EMS is the tax supported, county EMS agency serving the residents and visitors of San Juan Island, Town of Friday Harbor, Brown Island, Stuart Island, Johns Island, Speiden Island, Pearl Island and Henry Island in San Juan County, Washington. It provides emergency medical services, critical care transport, and injury and accident prevention. The staff of career paramedics and volunteer EMTs is available twenty-four hour a day. 

January 15, 2007

Timebomb defused....
The First Annual Ping Pong Championship was held at San Juan Fitness last night, and it appears the champ is Don "Dr. Spin" Leff, winning in three over Tim "Timebomb" Thomsen.

Poetry jam - it's happening this Saturday.....
Shannan at the Library has the woman from the Seattle Poetry Jam coming this weekend to help put on a Jam with our kids performing - here's how it works:

We’re having a teen poetry slam and spoken word poetry workshop for teens here at the library next Saturday the 19th. We’re bringing in Denise Jolly who used to host the Seattle Poetry Slam to do the workshop and host the slam. The workshop is for teens and it’s to be teens only competing in the slam but we’d like to invite everyone to come and cheer the teens on. The workshop is at 4pm in the meeting room and the slam will follow at 5pm by the library fireplace. Teens interested in the workshop should contact the library so we have an estimate of how many to expect.

Also on Saturday night....
Jonathan Hu tells me his band Be Careful is playing at the Ale House from 8-11pm, with original's his MySpace page. Also playing: Katie Gray and Kels Boreen.

Movies at the ...Sail Loft? Yep!
Sounds like Patrick & Andra have a nice evening planned weekend after next (I'm telling you now so you can plan - I know how busy you are). Here's what they tell me:

San Juan Canvas is hosting a "Sailing Film Night" to benefit the San Juan Island Sailing Foundation. We're featuring three classic sailing films (see below) on a large screen format with surround sound on January 25th, Friday at 7:00 pm. Tickets available at the door, suggested donation $5 child and $10 adult. We'll have popcorn and water, bring your own Milk Duds and soft pillow to sit on.

Around Cape Horn ~ Captain Irving Johnson recaps his voyage around Cape Horn in 1929 aboard the massive bark Peking. In this film he narrates the passage in the style that has made him a favorite around the world.

Jesse Martin Story ~ At 17, Jesse sets out to circumnavigate the world in his 34 foot sailboat, Lionheart, becoming the youngest person in history to sail around the world solo, nonstop, unassisted,

Stormy Weather ~ 1998 Round Britain and Ireland Yacht Race. Excellent footage of sailing in violent seas along rocky lee shores.

For more information, contact San Juan Canvas 378-4119.

How old would you be if you didn't know how old you are?
Satchel Paige

January 14, 2008

Back from school....
She's gotta get back to North Carolina for college this week, but it was good to see Emily Bayuk-Johnson (left, FHHS junior Casey Lehman on the right) at the play the other night....the holiday return of our university students is always a great time to catch up & find out what they're up to..

Creosote cleanup continues.....
From 2002 until next year, the Department of Natural Resources has received $6 million to do creosote cleanup around Puget Sound, and it's been going well - in the past three years, 1,200 tons of creosote-soaked driftwood and 2,000 tons of pilings were cleaned up. But there's still a long way to go, according to project organizers, and it's important the project be continued after next year. Here's more from the Seattle P-I and more from the Port Angeles online news.

Margaret's online....
It was cool to find Margaret Thorson's blog Sunday afternoon - it gives her (right) a chance to keep you up to date with Thousand Flower Farm, located on Waldron Island, where they grow vegetables, fruit, and flowers, raise sheep, weave rugs and knit hats for sale mainly in Friday Harbor. Check it out...she has her stuff - not the food! - for sale on the Island Studios site, too.

Hiyu won't come till February....
It was supposed to take on the Evergreen State's route on Wednesday, but that's been ppushed back. Here's the story from our friends at the WSF:

Washington State Ferries announced today that the switch from an 87-car Evergreen State class vessel to a smaller ferry, the 34-car Hiyu, has been delayed until early-February. The Hiyu is currently at Dakota Creek shipyard in Anacortes undergoing maintenance and repairs.

The Hiyu was to replace the Evergreen State on the San Juan Islands Inter-Island route next week, but the shipyard needs more time to finish repairs. The 87-car Klahowya will replace its sister ship the Evergreen State this weekend, January 13 and will remain on the Inter-Island route until the Hiyu is available.

Introducing a book called Johanna.....
There's a book out that's set in Friday Harbor (part of it), with a nice review of it here. Johanna is written by Isabel L. Martens, a romance novelist & grandmother who lives in Marietta, Georgia. See what you think....

Time to talk sustainability, real sustainability.....
In his blog, marketing professional & former journalist Nicholas Smith posted his remarks comparing sustainability efforts here and on the island of Oahu, in Hawaii. Located in Seattle, he visited here over the break and noticed there wasn't much apparently going what he has to say, in this and other posts.

This is the discussion of the year - we can't go on the way we have been. It's cool that Nicholas is starting it, and I hope, that we continue it.

For example, wouldn't it be cool if we had all that wind over the past six weeks captured into batteries to lower our OPALCO bills? That kinda thing.

First year anniversary visitors....
Seattle residents Tysha (right) & Jacob had their first year anniversary here, and posted some nice pictures of their visit on their blog - check 'em out to see how nice this place is in the winter. Glad you two had a nice visit!

You may have known David Black - he was a huge supporter of Camp Nor'wester & was involved in kid activities....the Seattle teacher owned land on Lopez and loved the islands. He was's more.

Dreams pass into the reality of action. From the actions stems the dream again; and this interdependence produces the highest form of living.
Anais Nin

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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