Submitted by The San Juan Makers Guild.
The San Juan Makers Guild hosted an Eastound Village Makers Stroll that featured Orcas Island and San Juan County grown and made products on October 1st. As the launch to the popular Farm Tours, local residents and visitors were out exploring local shops, tasting exciting flavors, partaking in adults-only sipping of spirits, and all ages enjoyed learning about hand made products not only produced, but also grown right here on Orcas. The event was a festive fusion of agriculture and artisan creativity.
A fun stroll engagement activity resulted in a drawing for 3 prizes awarded to participants who used a stroll map as a ‘passport’ to gather farm animal stickers at any participating shop where they made a purchase. Residents from the island and guests from Bellingham, Seattle area and Portland joined in the fun.
The Fall Makers Stroll featured Orcas grown herbal body care at Island Thyme, regional author’s works at Darvill’s Book Store, and local apple brandy from heritage orchards at the new Orcas Island Distillery Tasting Room. Specialty local grown cocktails surprises were served at The Barnacle, an array of island goods and produce was available at the Orcas Food Coop, delightful fruit and herb jam, preserves and shrubs were spotlighted at Girl Meets Dirt, and county wide local made products were showcased at Island Market.
A sponsors table at Island Market showcased hand crafted San Juan County made goods and was the drop off for the drawing entries. Three winners from the passport drawings received gift boxes with a mix of island products – body care soap from Island Thyme, fruit jam from Girl Meets Dirt, music by Susan Osborne, and Salish Sea kelp gomasio – which were received with delight by island and regional visitor winners. Paired with the Oct 2-3 Farm Tours, the joint events shared the joys of the Orcas Island lifestyle.
Participants from Seattle reported “My girlfriend and I were on Orcas Island for the 5th annual Moran Constitutional Relay and came a day earlier than the rest of our team to spend some time on the island. We find ourselves on Orcas quite a lot these days and every trip is a great experience. The Makers Tour was a fun way to explore Eastsound and we’d gladly do it again.”
Another from Lake Stevens wrote “We enjoyed the whiskey tasting and went home with a bottle. We also loved the permaculture farm. I was impressed to see persimmons and kiwis growing. We ate delicious oysters and sampled some apple cider. We love Orcas Island and visit twice each year. Rain or shine.”
And a local winner reported “I visited each of the island grown walk about locations and I bought some stuff from three of the stores: a book from Darvill’s, a cocktail from The Barnacle, and Local-Goods hot sauce from the Orcas Food Coop. On Saturday I went to the Orcas Farm, the OCPA@ Kaj Dawg farm, and the Lum Farm. I enjoyed the goat cheese and milk samples at Lum Farm and I love how they all support local restaurants and shops!”
With the winter holidays and gift giving right around the corner – go support island made and island grown products. Each purchase of an Orcas-made product helps build a year-round Makers economy and benefits our entire community by building economic self reliance and resilience.
Learn more about the Makers Guild at sanjuanmakersguild.com.