News

Fire Department reviews plans for Deer Harbor and engines

On June 24, the Orcas Island Fire Department Commissioners met with six members of the Strategic Plan Review committee to review plans for building wildland attack and structural engines (WAASP), for the permit process for the new Deer Harbor Fire Station, for a five-member Board, and to hear a proposal from the Fire/Medics for filling the Assistant Chief position left vacant when Buddy Wright resigned in March.

  • Jul 1st, 2008

The Fourth on Lopez Island

To make it easier to get to and from the Lopez Village activities, the Lopez Island Chamber of Commerce will offer free shuttle bus service from the ferry to Lopez Village and the South end from July 3-7. The bus will do extra duty on July 4th and late-night transportation to the ferry from the Village after the fireworks display is planned. For more information, call the Lopez Chamber at 468-4664 or visit www.lopezisland.com.

  • Jul 1st, 2008

Goat’s emergency ends sadly

Ferry diverted to help goat

  • Jun 28th, 2008

Power outage caused by submarine cable failure

June 25 outage causes minor grass fire on Blakely

  • Jun 28th, 2008

State school board seeks candidates, San Juan County in region

November's elections will add member to State School board; deadline to apply is Aug. 1

  • Jun 27th, 2008

AAA predicts decline in holiday travel this Fourth of July

For the first time this decade, AAA estimates a decline in the…

  • Jun 27th, 2008

King County Ferry District assumes cost of Vashon Island passenger-only service July 1

County forms taxing district to provide passenger-only ferry service

  • Jun 27th, 2008

Eastsound’s Peter Fisher reports on EPRC progress and communications with the County Council

Peter Fisher, retiring Chair of the Eastsound Planning Review Committee, presents the second "Annual Report" to the County Council on June 24. Reprinted in its entirety.

  • Jun 27th, 2008

…and one to go! Orcas Chamber of Commerce ‘Celebrates the Classics’ in community parade

“Celebrate the Classics” is the theme for the Chamber of Commerce’s annual community parade scheduled for Saturday, July 5 in Eastsound. “We live in a fast-paced world, one that is constantly looking for the latest and greatest trend. But there are many things we all value that have withstood the test of time, and the chamber thought the community Parade would be the perfect moment for people to celebrate their own classics,” said Lance Evans, Chamber Executive Director.

  • Jun 25th, 2008

Coffelt’s Farm purchase provides for future farmers

The San Juan County Land Bank’s recent purchase of Vern and Sidney Coffelt’s Farm on Orcas Island has helped ensure a future for local agriculture. The 185-acre working farm spans Crow Valley, connecting Fowler’s Pond and Turtleback Mountain Preserve, and encompassing an expanse of scenic open-space, habitat resources, and productive agricultural land.

  • Jun 25th, 2008

School’s budget advisors “find” $365,000

The Orcas Island School District’s Budget Advisory Committee (BAC) has taken last year’s budget and this year’s history to propose that $365,991 can be cut from the projected 2008-2009 general fund budget.

  • Jun 25th, 2008

Bill Gates Sr. speaks on San Juan

We’ll spend 13 years in school preparing for college or the workplace. But it’s our first five years of life – those years before we ever set foot in a classroom — that have the most impact on our ability to learn, control our behavior and build relationships. By age 5, we have the building blocks for success, or we have a tough road to hoe.

  • Jun 24th, 2008

Fire Department Commissioners to meet in Eastsound

On Monday, June 23, the Orcas Island Fire Department announced that its meeting would be held at the Eastsound Fire Hall instead of at the Deer Harbor Community Club, as previously announced. For information, contact 376-2331.

  • Jun 24th, 2008

Hazardous waste and illegal dump help from the state

San Juan County will receive over $206,000 as part of a state-wide grant program from the Department of Ecology. Local governments are getting $17.5 million in help from the State Department of Ecology to help keep communities cleaner and safer. The grants cover 176 projects to better manage solid and household hazardous wastes, prevent illegal dumping and promote waste-reduction, recycling, and composting. The State Department of Ecology issues the funds – called Coordinated Prevention Grants – every two years from a tax paid by wholesale distributors of petroleum and other hazardous materials.

  • Jun 24th, 2008

Medical student completes study at Orcas Medical Center

“As in any rural community, the family practice here at Orcas Medical Center has to be ready to address a wide range of medical issues,” said Cortney Boulton, a second-year University of Washington medical student who is nearing the end of a month-long study program on Orcas Island. “I’ve really learned a lot by just observing Dr. Giefer’s way of listening to patients carefully and understanding their needs.”

  • Jun 24th, 2008

The White Lotus Cafe blooms in Eastsound

An old cafe took on a new owner in May when Pauline Shuman opened the White Lotus Cafe in Eastsound Square.

  • Jun 24th, 2008

Join the FEAST as students learn permaculture design from local experts

Sam Bullock, with the help of friends and interns Jocelyn Burkhart, Paul Kearsley and Charly Robinson, welcomed 12 Farm Education and Sustainability for Teens (FEAST) students to the Bullocks Permaculture Homestead and Nursery last week for a three-day private permaculture design course. FEAST is a summer-long program for high school students who receive credit while attending classes taught by local experts.

  • Jun 24th, 2008

Council votes to continue subsidies on owner-builder permit fees

On Tuesday, June 17, the San Juan County Council amended permit fees for Owner/Builder building permits designed to give a financial break to people who want to build modest-sized homes, but charging the full rate to owner-builders who build larger homes.

  • Jun 24th, 2008

Plainclothes Border Patrol agents used at Anacortes

The Border Patrol checks at Anacortes include “plainclothesmen” who ask ferry workers to share “intelligence,” it was learned last week when a ferry worker came forward with his objections to being asked to divulge information.

  • Jun 24th, 2008

Waldron Candidates Forum

On Saturday, July 12, from 2 to 4 p.m., the Waldron Community Meeting (WCM) will host a candidates’ forum for the Orcas West District of the County Council and Judicial Candidates. Those wishing to attend may arrange transportation by calling Waldron Freight at 360-317 8041 or provide their own. The WCM will provide transportation to and from the Waldron dock. Please confirm at 360-317-8380. Each candidate will have five to ten minutes to present their position, followed by a question and answer session. Candidates are asked to bring their latest donor list and any literature to distribute.

  • Jun 24th, 2008

County prevails in Lopez shoreline case

On June 12, 2008, the Shoreline Hearing Board denied a variance for a vacation home on a narrow irregular shaped parcel along Fisherman Bay on Lopez Island. If allowed, it would be the only house on 1.2 miles of stretch of Fisherman Bay. The owners purchased the property knowing that it was unbuildable, and then applied for a variance to allow a setback from the top of the bank at 25 feet, according to Pete Rose, County Administrator.

  • Jun 24th, 2008

Permits for rainwater

The Department of Ecology is clarifying regulations governing the collection and use of rainwater in Washington state. Currently, homeowners aren’t required to obtain water right permits to collect and store small amounts of rainwater. The new rule for the first time would define how much rainwater can be collected and used before a permit is required.

  • Jun 24th, 2008

County proposes weed eradication assessment

The Chair of the San Juan County Noxious Weed Control Board told the San Juan County Council on June 17 that demands on the program - requests from property owners and site visits – have increased an average of more than 15 percent each year since 2002 and the number of information letters and noxious weed notifications sent to property owners so far this year is 20 times higher than at any time in the past.

  • Jun 24th, 2008

Whale cranium recovered off San Juans

The cranium of a whale skeleton that has been on the ocean bottom near the San Juan Islands since November 2006 finally resurfaced on Sunday, June 1, after a long, exhausting weekend for a team of University of Washington Friday Harbor Lab divers and vessel operators.

  • Jun 24th, 2008

Adventuress grounded

An historic sailboat that many locals have seen navigating island waters for years encountered a mishap earlier this week. Around noon on Monday, June 23, the 133’ schooner Adventuress ran aground on a rock near Wasp Pass.

  • Jun 24th, 2008

Wildfire education to be theme of day camp for middle schoolers

Two week course at Camp Orkila, July 14 to 25.

  • Jun 24th, 2008

Zee steps down at Conservation District

Departure creates vacancies within district, ARC, SJ Initiative

  • Jun 20th, 2008

Ranker wins sole endorsement of 40th Legislative District Democrats

Stephanie Kountouros declares that she will no longer seek the Senate seat.

  • Jun 20th, 2008

Council Votes to Continue Subsidies on Owner-Builder Permit Fees

By STAN MATTHEWSCounty Communications Program ManagerOn Tuesday, June 17, the San Juan…

  • Jun 19th, 2008

Orcas High School says goodbye to Class of 2008

At Commencement ceremonies on June 14, the 22 Orcas High School graduates wore blue caps and gowns, with a purple stole if they’d maintained a 3.25 grade point average, a blue collar if they were members of the National Honor Society – recognized for their scholarship, leadership, character and service – and candy leis if they were members of Key Club, the high school service organization. They wore high heels and flip-flops, skirts, leggings and shorts under their gowns, and gleefully threw their mortarboards in the air before leaving commencement.

  • Jun 19th, 2008

Eastsound Fire Dept. to host Relay for Life fund-raiser June 28

Clean furniture and other household items that are in good condition are now being accepted as donations to the Relay for Life Fund-raiser Yard Sale on Saturday, June 28 from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. at the Eastsound Fire Department.

  • Jun 18th, 2008

Public invited to study botany on Mt. Constitution June 21

A San Juan Nature Institute adult field workshop with Dr. Thor Hanson will explore the botany of Mt. Constitution June 21. The public will be able to study site ecology and plant identification at various elevations, with explorations to an old-growth forest and a spring-fed fen, among other locations. The workshop will take place Saturday, June 21 from 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

  • Jun 18th, 2008

Wash. ferries ends 30-min. lockout rule for multi-ride cards

On Thursday, June 5, WSDOT Ferries Division removed the 30-minute lock-out restriction on the frequent user discounted multi-ride car and driver card so that families traveling together on a ferry in separate vehicles can share their multi-ride card, in the same way that they currently share their walk-on tickets. The 30-minute lock-out (also known as a “velocity lock”) meant that a multi-ride vehicle ticket can only be used once in a 30-minute time period.

  • Jun 18th, 2008

Several Orcas residents graduating from Univ. of Washington

Orcas Island students who will be graduating from the University of Washington this June include John Rollin Wulff, with a Bachelor of Science in informatics; Rachel Louise Collister, receiving a Bachelor or Arts in anthropology; and Barry Meyer Cousteau Jones, earning a Bachelor of Science in informatics.

  • Jun 18th, 2008

Gamblers Anonymous comes to Orcas Island

Gamblers Anonymous is starting a chapter on Orcas Island. The group meets Saturdays at 4 p.m. in the new Emmanuel Church Parish Hall in Eastsound.

  • Jun 18th, 2008

Orcas High grad receives BA from Whitman College

Andrew I. Zoeller received his bachelor of Arts in Philosophy from Whitman College at their Commencement Ceremony on May 18. Indy is the son of Melinda Milligan and Dave Zoeller of Eastsound and is a 2004 graduate of Orcas High School. He would like to thank the Kiwanis, Orcas Center, the Islands’ Sounder, the Lions Club, the Firefighter’s Association and a number of Orcas Whitman Alumni who helped make it possible for him to attend Whitman.

  • Jun 18th, 2008

Orcas School Dist. awards ’07 grad with $6.7K grant

Gregory Griffith, a 2007 graduate of Orcas Island High School and a student at Eastern Washington Univeristy, has been awarded a Carper Foundation Scholarship for $6,700 for the 2008-2009 academic year. This scholarship is awarded to a student with a 2.80 or higher GPA from the Orcas Island Public School system.

  • Jun 18th, 2008

Orcas High grad makes president’s list at Western Wash. Univ.

Orcas Island's Daniella Armstrong made the President’s list at Western Washington University for the Winter quarter. She continues studying Arabic and Spanish as well as geology and modern dance while working toward a degree in linguistics.

  • Jun 18th, 2008