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Friday Harbor - San Juan Island Update

February 7, 2004

Sunny days: Lots of sun these last couple of days, with the birds starting to drop by (that's a rufous to the right). I had a crowd of robins in the yard yesterday for a while.

Try this: I KNOW this is the sort of thing you're interested in: While sitting at your desk, lift your right foot off the floor and make clockwise circles. Now, while doing this, draw the number "6" in the air with your right hand.

Your foot will change direction and there's nothing you can do about it.

Big fish: The big fishing derby's this weekend at Roche - the first fish caught was a 26 pounder. With a $10,000 first place prize, a lot of people are interested in who wins. I'll try & have the winners for you on Sunday (they'll be announced tonight.)

Whale Museum turnover: I hear Sally's left the Museum as director, and that Rich Osbourne is taking her place. Rich is the long time resident scientist and whale expert on the staff - good choice to have someone with a sense of the place's history in charge.

Basketball: Coach Rod Turnbull tells me the FHHS boys control their own playoff destiny with games at Orcas today and LaConner on Tuesday. The playoffs get underway next weekend...Orcas hasn't been as strong as the Wolverines this year, but you know it would make their season to beat us to close out their year, so no one is taking anything for granted. Senior Brady Ryan assured me Friday the guys aren't taking the Vikings lightly.

February 5, 2004

Phoenix rising: The building that is growing out of the May 2002 fire continues to rise (right)...that's China Pearl to the left and Coldwell Banker just past the cement truck, in case things seem turned around. The speed with which the construction continues is heartening...may be done for summer.

Vegetarians unite: Sam & Jane Buck are holding their annual vegetarian potluck this coming Sunday at 4:15-5:15 at the Grange. Call Jane for times and details.

More construction stories: Yep, it's true - I saw the Frontier Building supply folks put up a sign at the old Pope building across from the Suites. They're moving in this spring to offer what they offer over in Anacortes, trying to save folks the ferry trip.

The Big Fish: The winner gets $10,000, and that's a big part of the excitement about Roche Harbor’s First Annual Salmon Classic Invitational this weekend.

Roche's Chris Watling wrote to say: "Roche Harbor’s First Annual Salmon Classic Invitational for 2004 is just about ready to kick off with just a few spaces left for the angler who does not want to get left out.

"Roche Harbor has attracted anglers from all over the Pacific Northwest and Canada to compete for the big prize of $10,000, as well as other great prizes including a second prize of $5,000 and third of $1,500.

"This Salmon Classic Invitational has been named one of six derbies in the new Northwest Salmon Derby Series produced by the Northwest Marine Trade Association. As a participating angler in the NW series, there will be a chance to win a new 18-foot Stabi-Craft boat, Suzuki motor and EZ-Load trailer, as well as other great prizes. With a registration date of February 5th almost here, and fishing on 6th and 7th it is important to get your name in as soon as possible. For more information or to get an entry form please call Debbie Sandwith on 360-378-5562."

Quote: "To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children; to earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends; to appreciate beauty, to find the best in others; to leave the world a little better; whether by a healthy child, a garden patch or a redeemed social condition; to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is the meaning of success."
-Ralph Waldo Emerson

February 4, 2004

First near the last: It was cool - not only did all four FHHS basketball teams win against Concrete, but the sweep included the JV girls' first win of the season as well. As the season nears its end, the boys varsity is looking forward to playoff action, with pairings to be determined next week.

Afoot: If Spiderman can dance, why don't you?

Pear Point pares down: Debbie Pigman from the Chamber tells me: "Pear Point Inn is being sold and the current owners are having a giant sale on February 7 & 8, 10am-4pm! Furniture from 3 bedrooms, living room, den, dining sets, pictures, vases, deck chairs, tools, shop shelves, pressure washer, Land Cruiser, 25' fishing boat, refrigerator, microwave......this is only a partial list. Everything must go!! Check it out. 2858 Pear Point Road.

The Drama Group does it again: Fred Yockers and the kids in the FHHS Drama Group keep pushing the edge...last week's production of "David & Lisa" was wonderfully acted, well-paced, and most of all moving. The actors made the darkness of disturbed kids come alive...I've been running into people all this week who tell me it's one of the best shows they've seen here.

The only thing rotten about the show was it only had a one-week run. It would be a good one to see twice. Much better than the Super Bowl, for sure.

Outdoors in Outside: The August 2003 issue of Outside Magazine listed the San Juan Islands and Outdoor Odysseys as one of the "ten favorite liquid adventures in the United States." Check it out at Outdoor Magazine.

Library dudes make good: Remember John Sinclair who worked for a while at the library as the tech guy? He's posted a website about life in Siberia you might interesting, especially if you think WE live in a remote place.

Meanwhile, his successor Michael Perrin has slipped into management at the former Entertainment Tonight (ET), which opened as the Big Store earlier this week. Drop by & say hi - as far as I can tell he'll be there most hours.

Passing: The first time I met Dorothy at Friday Harbor Realty was nearly ten years ago, when Howard Smith persuaded her that the office needed a website to sell property. Theirs was one of the first on the island to be launched, and I was glad to know her as she gave me business hints, advice, and always said hello at the post office. It was sad to hear of her passing last week.

It was also sad to hear of Mary Karen Ryan's mom's passing a few weeks back.

At 7 p.m. Feb. 7, Charles Jackson's memorial service will be held at the Presbyterian Church.

School back in action: The school district substituted one of the make-up snow days for last Monday's inservice day (10 days ago), and has tacked on a couple of days to the end of the school year in June, making us the school system to stay in session longer than anyone in the western Hemisphere, I believe.

CD on the shelf: The good folks at Warehouse Coffee have agreed to carry my more place to get it. Since you missed making a Christmas present of it, consider what a great Valentine's Day present it would make. Or belated Groundhog Day gift.

It's the thought that matters. Sing along.

Tiger ball continues: Each Saturday the middle school Tigers trek to the mainland to play basketball against teams there. Last week saw the 6th, 7th, and 8th grader boys all record wins one way or another, and more importantly, learn how to play together better. The season continues into the middle of March.

Music: Speaking of middle school, ace music teacher Janet Olsen set things up so the kids who make their annual trip to solo ensemble each February won't have to this year. The judging will happen this weekend on island for the first time in recent memory. Way to go, Janet!

Quote; "Honest differences are often a healthy sign of progress." Mahatma Gandhi

February 3, 2004

Tip: What a few weeks we've had here....mostly gray weather, changes in the business landscape, and a few dents in the body politic.

Most prominent on the landscape, of course, is the upcoming state caucus this weekend. On Saturday, the Dems on the island will meet and register their voice as part of selecting a nominee. If you go by the number of signs and bumper stickers around the island, it would appear the Howard Dean's out front, although I've seen Kucinich and Kerry posts as well, and lots of "Regime Change 2004" bumper stickers. There's not much action from the GOP, but it's pretty early for them, although the president does have people running in the primaries, like Billy Jack. Remember him?

Away & back: As you can tell by the date since I last posted news, I've been dad had open-heart surgery in Tennessee & I went to be with him, Mom, and the family. He's doing great, thanks - and thanks to all of you who wrote expressing your concern. He's recovering well, and it's sure nice to have him around. I hope you get a chance to give your dad a hug and thank him for being around, too.

I'll be posting more later today.

January 20, 2004

Dr. King remembered: Sunday night, about 50-75 people held a candlelight walk from the Courthouse through town in memory of Martin Luther King's 75th birthday. The march ended at the Grange, where folks sat down to a soup and salad meal and visited for a while.

In celebrating his life, I hope folks remember there is much still left to do. The achievement of his time on the planet is part of my personal history - I grew up in Montgomery in the 1960s and 70s amid amazing changes. As a kid I was told many times: "This will never change." And you know what, it did. I guess that's what makes me think, with the present craziness in the world, that there's every reason to believe things can be better. We can change - we've done it before.

Quote: "Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that."
-Martin Luther King, Jr.

Town news: Some things happened since I last filed a report. To wit:

Bob from the Little Store bought Entertainment Tonight from Dave & Debbie, who are going to concentrate their efforts on their year-old Jimmy's Cafe at the bowling alley. Plans are to change ET's name to the Big Store at the first of next month.

Meanwhile, Charles from China Pearl is in restaurant-acquisition mode again: he's closed a deal with Friday Harbor Suites (formerly the part of the Inns at Friday Harbor across from Post San Juan) to open an upscale steak & seafood restaurant in the Suites. An opening in early spring is planned.

The renovation at the Suites continues - all 63 rooms are being stripped of carpet, repainted, and re-draped this winter. The place'll sparkle come spring...

Building where the fire was continues full speed - slowed by the snow two weeks ago, it just looks more and more complete every time you check.

It was sad to hear Charles Jackson passed away a couple of weeks ago. Find his name at this address to read about him and remember him.

On the water: Peter Fromm called yesterday to let me know he heard "Flowers in the Sand" on the radio yesterday when he was towing a boat between islands. The "Whale Tales" author is prepping volume III, but in no particular rush.

Lower impact needed: Consumerism is growing in this country, and the signs are not good for what that will leave us in the future. Read more.

Magazine spotlights the Yachts: Jan at Friday Harbor Yachts tells me the story in last month's PassageMaker mag about how the company's Selene line is made in China has been good publicity.

Meanwhile, Brian Calvert's scheduled to marry his friend Sasha (right) in late March, and they're making plans. He, Jan & Dan are down at the Seattle Boat show this week till the weekend, showing off four boats they took down there, including a new 36' Selene.

Cheerful: I saw FHHS's cheerleading coach Jackie on the ferry Saturday night coming home from competition with her excited girls. She files this report:

The FHHS cheerleading team competed Saturday January 17th at the Oak Harbor Spiritfest competition. The competition was held at Oak Harbor High School and has been going on for a number of years. The competition brings local teams from Washington State as well as a few from Canada. There was a total of 35 team competing in the school division. There are several divisions based on the size of the squad and if it is coed. There is also an All star competition.

This was the first team competition that the FHHS cheer team has ever competed in. They competed in the small all girl varsity division. They had to perform a 2 and a half minute routine combining tumbling, a cheer, dancing and lots of stunting.

The girls did an awesome performance and represented Friday Harbor extremely well. They performed a clean routine and hit all of their stunts. Although they did not place in the top three in their division, we all should be very proud of them. They worked very hard for this competition and it was a great experience for all the girls. This is our first competition and we will continue to build the cheerleading program for the years to come. We have a young team this year with only 1 senior and three freshman. We will definitely be competing again next year in this competition!

In the photo: Front Row: Stacey Growden, Kelly Pope, Mariah McMurtrie; Back Row: Lilly Price, Kate Pratt, Talia Loucks, Claire Burke. Manager - Maggie Shaw

The girls will be performing their competition routine at this Friday's home game as well as the Winter fest School Pep Rally.

January 10, 2004

Snow no more: Well, the snow finally melted - quickly, too - and by Friday everything was like winter's supposed to be: a bit chilly, muddy from all the melted snow, and mostly gray. Ah, winter...and the days are getting longer, too.

Home sweet island.

Rebuilding goes on: You remember the fire downtown that gutted a block of Friday Harbor in one great gulp in May, 2002 (see the story below on May 9, 2002 for details)? Well, the reconstruction is moving along well, as you can see in this photo by Tim Dustrude from yesterday (click to enlarge).

Although slowed by the weather the last few days, the workers are making great progress through these winter months.

One of Tim's photos from the fire ended up on the front of the Seattle Times' online edition - you can see it here. That was a difficult month for us all... It'll be nice when the new structure's in place.

Winter sports: If it seems crowded on the ferry this morning, it's because there's some 45 basketball boys, their coaches and parents headed to Mount Vernon to play their first weekend of middle school ball at Skagit Valley College. Sponsored by the Friday Harbor Athletic Association, the Tigers will field six teams which go off-island nearly every weekend to play mainland opponents.

Meanwhile, the FHHS boys lost to ATM last night, while the boys JV eked out a one-point winner in the second game.

Short week: It felt like a weird week, didn't it? After two four-day weeks for Christmas and New Year's, it was mostly a two- or three-day week this week. wonder what next week will be like.

January 6, 2004

More snow, and then more: It's been snowing since before dawn today, and seems to keep going. The photo at left is Spring Street at sunrise a little after 8am this morning, which wasn't much brighter than when the sun wasn't up. A lot more snow has fallen since, but it appears things are supposed to warm up in the next couple of days, too.

Driving around for a few minutes this morning was actually easier than when everything was so icy - snow gives a bit of traction - but still no picnic. More folks were moving pretty slow, and that's good. As the day progesses and some of this stuff melts & freezes, it's not going to get much easier. Stay put & make yourself some hot chocolate. Time to write those thank you notes for all those presents.

In my search for snow photos this morning, I made my way over to Warehouse Coffee, where Dwight and Sarah said their pipes had frozen and busted, so I got apple cider. It reminded me of last week when the boys and I went to the Doctor's Office for hot chocolate and THEY had busted pipes, too. Theirs was a town conduit at the bottom of the hill....hope it's OK by now.

Then I dropped by the Little Store and visited with bundled-up folks, most of whom said they wished they didn't have to work in the cold. Bob (who runs the store) told me there's a new sales tax this year for certain "foods" like juice that's less than 50% juice and bottled water. Heck, I didn't know that. Food - even pretend food like watered down juice - shouldn't be taxed. Not good for poor folks.

Meanwhile, the schools are closed, including Skagit Valley College. You can guess that all the kids on the island are out playing in the snow - quick, before it melts.

Got a date? If you look at the dates on the last two entries below, you'll notice they now say 2004 instead of 2003. I do that with my checks, too. Takes about a month.

Thanks for writing to let me know. You can only be so retro.

January 5, 2004

Hunker down: Looks like another good day to settle in & stay put, if you can. The school district decided to, so the kids'll be home this Monday morning. With a storm watch on for tonight, get the firewood ready.

I got a chance to visit with Scott Bell, the guy who manages the facilities for the schools, including the buses. He said mid-afternoon yesterday that he was going to drive around the island a bit to begin the process of deciding whether the roads were passable or not. He mentioned that the safety of the students was his first concern.

The roads were pretty slick yesterday, even with no precipitation. It got down into the single digits last night, and more tonight. Hunker down and don't let your pipes freeze.

January 3, 2004

Snow more: There had been the usual rumors of snow and ice since before Christmas, but as anyone who has lived here for a while knows, it rarely snows. Yawn, get the egg nog.

But last night it came. It snowed hard starting around 7 or 7:30, and was that lousy mixed rain (you know it's gonna freeze) and snow (you know the kids'll try and make snowballs out of it, anyway.)

Photographer cheats death: This morning it was cold, and frozen. As your intrepid reporter of all that matters in town, I got in the car and bravely cruised downtown to shoot the pictures to the right and below (click on it if you want to see a larger version for detail). Cruising, as such, was easy, because the road was frozen and one tends to slide. Twice I thought I wouldn't be able to get up a tiny hill and had to turn around. It was pretty slick.

Meanwhile, the town looks downright pretty. There's snow on the rooftops, with the northerly wind blowing clouds of it around.

The long term forecast is for more of the same for the next couple of days at least, with lows in the teens tonight. Hit the link for weather at the top of the page if you're wondering.

It's OK to stay home. The County guys are out sanding the roads, but it's still not fun to drive on. Start the fire and get the book out.

Homecomings: Last week I ran into Stephanie Connor down at the coffee shop - she was here from Colorado to visit her mom with her husband and three-month-old baby Dexter.

FHES principal Carolyn Haugen's daughter Krissy and son-in-law Craig were in town for most of the holiday - they have a house here and are plotting to move here.

Other side of the world: Speaking of cold visits, Jeff Asher's spending part of his hard-earned vacation going to Antarctica next week with his world-traveling parents.

Meanwhile, Dilys from Serendipity Books spent part of November and December in New Zealand, and even though she wasn't in Wellington for the premiere, she said the country was batty over its involvement with the "Lord of the Rings."

Around town: You know Paul and Andy from the hostel - they were carrying baby Jack (he's already over a year old - time flies!) around town. Andy'll show you her bicep which is much stronger from hauling Jack around. Jack, meanwhile, is growing big & strong.

Last Sunday, I saw Carol Ford and asked her if she knew how the Seahawks had done...she said Greg was home keeping track. Then I saw Greg at Mi Casita on New Year's Eve and we swapped old restaurant stories. His favorite was when the staff at Ford's (before it was Haley's) threw him a surprise birthday party by calling him in on his day off; mine involved when I waited table on Bourbon Street in New Orleans for mafia dons.

Innside out: You know the Inns at Friday Harbor has split into two - Laura and Adam from Friday's Historical Inn signed the final deal about a month ago to take over the in-town half of the property, while the part across from Post San Juan stays in the hands of the previous owners. The Inns' Mikki Ellis tells me her part will go under the name "Friday Harbor Suites," while the one in town will re-open in late winter as the Friday Harbor Inn.

Spammed: Kathryn from the San Juan Cellars wine shop next to the ferry told me she was getting returned e-mail from people using her e-mail as the sender. She was able to track down at least one of the offenders and get 'em to stop. Makes me want to sic her on the people who send me tons of junk each day....

700,000 and counting: The San Juan Island Web Directory was started in 1995 as a place for local folks to connect for local websites, and to let the world at large know what we have here. It's mission is to list all the websites about this island that help visitors make plans to come and let locals stay in touch with each other. It's currently connected to some 4500 other websites around the planet, and comes up second in Google and Yahoo for the words "Friday Harbor" and fourth for "San Juan Island."

Why am I telling you all that? Sometime today, the counter on the frontpage will turn 700,000. It's actually a lot more - we went most of 1998 without a counter, and occasionally had months when it undercounted because of the way we designed the page.

700,000 feels like a lucky number, so I wanted to tell you about it.

The year ahead: At this time of year, it's customary to review the year just past. I think it's much more interesting to look at what's ahead for the island, the County, and beyond.

In 2004, we'll be picking County Commissioners again. San Juan Commish Darcie Nielsen has indicated she won't look to get elected a third time, and the race appears to be wide open. Although Friday Harbor Grocery store owner Ray Bigler is the only announced candidate, I've heard rumblings from at least a dozen islanders who tell me they're "looking into it." Although it's my custom to shamelessly report rumor and inside scoop stuff here all the time, I'm waiting to discuss who these people are, because I don't want to scare you just yet.

Meanwhile, John Evans on Orcas will probably run again, with no highly-visible opponent in sight.

The School District faces the twin challenges of keeping a strong academic program in place in the face of budget cuts. It's heartening to see the district's outreach to Spring Street School and to home schooling parents...that sort of thing bodes well for us working together as a community. Also, we have a fair number of teachers poised to retire at the elementary school. Change is in the air.

We'll need to watch & deal with the cumulative effects of four years of ferry rate increases on... everything. Will more visitors choose to stay home rather than come here next summer? Will the increased costs be a burden on local businesses and people? Will the increased utility rates for the town drive more working people out (I live in town - I'll keep you posted)? It costs more to live feels like a slow-moving snowball going downhill. At some point, it WILL get to the bottom.

Meanwhile, we can't forget that we have a planet to care for. In the 2000 Presidential "Debates" (Paul Simon: "Any way you look at it, you lose"), in three 90-minute visits, the environment was discussed a total of seven minutes. We're going to have to do better than that if we're going to have a world to leave our kids & their kids that anyone would want live in.

In this year's debates there should also be a rule that you have to answer the question you're asked, or you get gonged.

Stay tuned for more good ideas. More soon.

December 24, 2003

Best of the season to you! If I don't see you sooner, I hope you have a great holiday! Merry Christmas to you & yours....

Good morning! I saw Bill LaPorte at the post office yesterday morning moments after shooting the sunrise to the right over Griffin Bay...he let me know he'd retired this week from the Town Council. I asked him what's he gonna do now, and he smiled and said, "Play." We talked for a bit about our common friends that happen to be in other political parties, and pretty much agreed parties don't matter much.

Mailbag: Miles checks in:

Just thought someone might be interested in Game Night at the pub. Every
Wednesday night 5:30 - 9 p.m. Topside at The Front Street Ale House. Darts,
board games (Scrabble, UNO, Monolophy, etc.), darts, Crokinole and others.
It's a lot of fun and a good way to relax after a long day on the job.

Another thing coming up is New Year's Eve. The Canadian band 1066 will be
performing topside.

Miles Crossen
Friday Harbor, WA

December 22, 2003

Happy Solstice to you: According to friends who keep track of such things, we rolled into the winter solstice this morning at 2am or so...hope you had a good one, and got some sleep anyway. There's some poetry in our feeble human attempts to add more light to the night this time of year, with all the trees & lights in the street for the season. It is a harbinger of the increasingly longer days ahead from here on out.

Get outside and play.

Too many goodbye parties: It's the season for holiday parties, but some are sadder than others. Yesterday I dropped by Ramsey and Joyce Milne's house for Felicity's going away get-together. After closing Felicitations back in June, Felicity's been making cakes and food as a catering/special event biz; she's since picked up a job making the event food at the Marcus Whitman Hotel in Walla Walla. She leaves the island after six years, and starts her new gig at the first of the year.

At another party I got to visit with Adnan & Antionette who run Maloula's...they're taking off tomorrow to move with the kids back to Damascus, Syria. Adnan's keeping his finger in the island pie, though - he hasn't sold the restaurant yet, and may be back to work this summer.

Christmas Memories: It was pretty awesome to see StageLeft's Christmas Memories, based on Dylan Thomas' writings, including A Child's Christmas in Wales. Laura Conrad's singing with Daniel Mayes as Thomas was brilliant; as usual, Helen Machin-Smith's direction was precise and well-timed.

They sure do good work.

December 17, 2003

No news is good news: Hey, I was kind of relaxed, kinda thinking there wasn't much to report, when a bunch of stuff happened. People wrote with major concerns, so let's start there.

Hi, Ian!

I noticed the Internet was really slow this morning when I got on my computer. Is that because of all the wind last night and this morning?
BTW - I love your newsletter. Keep it up!
Thanks - Julie

Dear Julie,

Thanks for the nice note. I don't believe the wind slows up the Internet; in fact, I'm pretty sure it speeds it up. Kinda like a tailwind if you're in an airplane. So just get a new computer. That should fix the problem.
Thanks for writing, Ian

More mail: Amy wrote with a reminder for all you writers (this is fun!):

Hi Ian! Just a quick note to let you know that this coming Friday, December19 is Writer's Café at the Flying Burrito. No-host dinner, drinks until 7.
Sign up at 7, readings start around 7:30 (or sooner if the dishwasher gets done early!) I sure enjoyed the songs you shared last month. "Flowers in
the Sand" is stuck in my head now...that's a good thing! Hope to see you there! Amy Wynn

And Pierre LaBossiere who used to write for the paper here checks in from LaGrande, Oregon, where he writes, now:

Hey, Ian, I dunno if you might be interested in this. These are photos of Hazen Hyland (above), son of Art Hyland, who owns the Radio Shack and Gail, who works at Friday Harbor Realty. Hazen played high school basketball for Friday Harbor in '98 and '99. Now, he plays for Pacific Lutheran University. He played at a college tournament at Eastern Oregon University this weekend. He scored eight points against Carroll College (Mont.) and seven points against San Jose Christian.

Babies around town: You know Rhonda from Mi Casita? I saw her and her new baby girl Evan at the bank yesterday, visiting with Sherry Windham, who's due the first of the new year sometime. Over the weekend, I ran into Bernadette Mason and her new girl Zorra, too. everybody looks well and happy.

Flus in the news: You've been reading about the flu nationwide - it's hit hard at school here, with some 40 kids gone a couple of weeks ago and 30 last week from our 200-or-so kid middle school. The high school has been similarly hammered, and so has my house - both of my boys missed time at school last week and this. Ugh.

Get yourself well.

Stuff to do: The Island Rec folks won't be sending a printed brochure of their winter '04 programs (that was lost in last month's budget defeat), but the programs are posted online on their site. It's cold enough & the weather's bad enough - check it out & keep moving!

Passing: It was sad to hear about Tom Johnson earlier this month. The San Juan Islander had a nice writeup about him, with a link to a page celebrating his life.

More passing: It cast a pall on things this weekend to hear that Keiko the whale had died. Here on the island, people felt a special kinship with that killer whale, partly because Free Willy 2 was filmed here, but mostly, I think, because folks around here love whales so much. For more detailed information about what Keiko's passing means, and what the experiment of setting him free in Iceland meant, read the Whale Museum's report & links, and the Free Lolita news page.

Quote: "If the only prayer you say in your whole life is 'thank you,' that would suffice." Meister Eckhart, 1260-1328, 13th-Century Dominican Mystic

Roche windiness: Check the Roche Harbor weather cam looking out over the marina - you'll get the idea of how gray & windy & wet it is today....

Roche Christmas: Chris Watling sends along the way the Victorian Christmas will look this season, this weekend:

The annual Roche Harbor Old Fashioned Caroling will take place on Sunday December 21st at 6:00 p.m. this year.
The event has become very popular, with many islanders and guests getting into the mood by dressing in their Victorian outfits or by borrowing some from the wide assortment available in the costume department.
This year the event will be larger and will incorporate the Christmas Village where island artists have already been selling gifts from their booths on weekends, and Santa has found a perch in his own little house. Old fashioned fire cressets from Colonial Williamsburg, VA will light up the evening, along with wood-burning fire pits and hot chestnuts to warm cold hands.
Featured this year will be the Overman Family Musicians from Arlington, WA. The air will be filled with artful renditions of sacred, classical and traditional music, skillfully performed by the Overman family consisting of Ken and Marilyn Jane and their eight children. Five violins, a viola, two cellos, a flute and a classical guitar comprise the family ensemble. Ages of the children range from the oldest at 21 playing cello, to the youngest at 3 years playing beginning violin. Many awards and honors have been received for their musical accomplishments including principle positions and solos in regional youth symphonies. Guests at Roche Harbor enjoyed performances during this past summer from the Overmans, where the sounds of a chamber orchestra and harmonious tones of an acapella choir were heard throughout the harbor.
Also adding to the evening will be Sam Buck, Sr. as our song leader, along with Angel Michaels and her beautiful voice, who will be singing some of her Christmas Carol renditions – a great line-up for the North end of the island. Roche Harbor is inviting everyone to come out and enjoy Christmas at Roche Harbor.

Quote: "Human superiority is as much a lie as male superiority. Gorillas are stronger yet gentler than humans, cheetahs swifter and more graceful, dolphins more playful and exuberant. Bees who perceive ultraviolet light and dance a message of angle and distance; fish who simultaneously see forward, above, below, and behind while swimming through endlessly varied tropical color; birds who navigate over hemispheres, sensing the earth's magnetic field and soaring in rhythm with the rest of their flock; sea turtles who, over decades, experience vast stretches of ocean - what wisdom and vision are theirs? Other animals have other ways of knowing."--Joan Dunayer, "Sexist Words, Speciesist Roots"

Read the Update from years gone by - history is doomed to repeat itself:

Review the Update from October 1, 2003 - December 6, 2003

Review the Update from August 20, 2003 - October 1, 2003

Review the Update from June 19, 2003 - August 20, 2003

Review the Update from April 18, 2003 - June 19, 2003

Review the Update from March 1, 2003 - April 18, 2003

Review the Update from December 19, 2002 - February 28, 2003

Review the Update from October 26, 2002 - December 18, 2002

Review the Update from August 13, 2002 - October 26, 2002

Review the Update from May 9 (the fire) - August 12, 2002

Review the Update from April 1, 2002 - May 8, 2002

Review the Update from December 15, 2001 - April 1, 2002

Review the Update from September 11, 2001 - December 14, 2001

Review the Update from June 7 , 2001 - September 10, 2001

Review the Update from March 17, 2001 - June 6, 2001

Review the Update from December 18, 2000 - March 16, 2001

Review the Update from July 25, 2000 - December 17, 2000

Review the Update from April 21, 2000 - July 25, 2000

Review the Update from January 1, 2000 - April 21, 2000

Review the Update from October 21, 1999 - December 31, 1999

Review the Update from August 12, 1999 - October 21, 1999

Review the Update from May 17, 1999 - August 12, 1999

Review the Update from April 8, 1999 - May 17, 1999

Review the Update from February 26, 1999 - April 8, 1999

Review the Update from January 3, 1998 - February 26, 1999

Review the Update from November 1, 1998 - January 3, 1998

Review the Update from August 31, 1998 - October 31, 1998

Review the Update from July 2, 1998 - August 30, 1998

Review the Update from May 25, 1998 - July 2, 1998

Review the Update from April 3 - May 25, 1998

Review the Update from January 22, 1998 to April 3, 1998.

Review the Update from November 24, 1997 to January 22, 1998.

The information here is simply stuff we here at By Design think is important around Friday Harbor or on the Island. Some of it's news, some of it's 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

More info about the island:

San Juan Island: The Web Directory
Everything. Simply everything about the island.

This site prepared by our friends at By Design in Friday Harbor.
The information contained here is
©Copyright 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004
by By Design, Friday Harbor.
Unauthorized reuse of the content of these pages is prohibited;
links to other sites is intended to be to the benefit of those sites,
and for the edification of our readers,
and does not constitute endorsement or
agreement with views expressed there.