Letter to the Editor: Park and Rec and School Levies Serve Us All

— by Martha Farish– Dear Islanders I wanted to write this letter before I know the outcome of the Park and Rec and school levies. I am a Park and Rec commissioner and have served as commissioner since the inception of Orcas Park and Rec District. Taxes that pay for … Continue reading

Catkin Cafe Opens with New Chef

–from Madie Murray — Rumor has it there is a new chef at the Catkin Cafe in the Artworks building in Olga, and I’m here to quell the rumors…it’s true! Angela Emery has joined forces with café owner Cheryl Helm to create a new “stir” in the kitchen. Angela arrived … Continue reading

Vendors: Apply for August County Fair Slots Now

— from Ashley King for the SJ County Fair — The San Juan County Fair is now accepting vendor booth registration for the 2016 Fair [Aug 17-20 in Friday Harbor]. Are you an island artisan selling handmade goods? Is your local business looking to advertise? The Fair is the place … Continue reading

Helping in Lesbos: A Most Humbling, Heart-breaking, Heart-warming Experience


— from Kate Jewell — Peeling six layers of dripping wet clothes off the first screaming, terrified infant thrust in my arms was challenging. Getting her diapered, redressed, warm, dry and reunited with her mother even more so. Especially when the surrounding environment in our make-shift tent had grown to … Continue reading

Come to the Olga Potluck

Please come to the Olga Valentines Potluck, Saturday, February 13th at the Olga Community Center. Social hour begins at 5:00 and we sit down for dinner at 6:00. Carl Burger will provide music for our enjoyment on the evening before Valentine’s Day. Please bring your own place settings and a … Continue reading

Christian School Hosts Free Mexican Dinner

— from Anna Vedder for Orcas Christian School — The next Community Dinner at Orcas Christian School is on Tuesday, February 9, from 5 to 7:30 p.m. This free, all-you-can eat meal will feature Mexican food. On the menu is cheese enchiladas, burritos, Spanish rice, refried beans, Mexican slaw, black … Continue reading

County Council Has Approved Chip Sealing

— from Islanders Saving Dolphin Bay Road — As you may have read by now, on Tuesday the Council voted to proceed with the recommendation by Public Works to chip seal Dolphin Bay Road, notwithstanding the strong opposition and feedback received. Obviously we are very disappointed, but respect the decision of … Continue reading

Rock Island Working with T-Mobile to Accelerate Wireless Internet Services

T-Mobile to offer cellular service in San Juan County — from OPALCO and Rock Island — Rock Island will deliver on its promise to bring wireless services to both home and business users in San Juan County via LTE Fixed Wireless by working with T-Mobile USA, Inc. “This is a … Continue reading

Visit Shaw Historic Homestead With Your Valentine


Sunday, February 14, 1 – 2:30 p.m., Tharald Historic Homestead on Shaw — from Boyd Pratt, San Juan County Land Bank — Share a historical secret with your sweetie this Valentine’s Day! Join Boyd Pratt, architectural historian, on a guided tour of the privately owned Shaw Island pioneer farm, which is listed … Continue reading

Help Low-Income Households with OPALCO’s Energy Assist Credit and Project PAL

— from Suzanne Olson, Public Relations Administrator, OPALCO — Did you notice the new line item on your January bill from OPALCO? All co-op members began paying about 45 cents per month (average residential bill) to fund the new Energy Assistance Credit to help qualified low-income households pay their electric … Continue reading

Guest Opinion: Local Perspective on Water Issues in Flint


— from Paul Kamin, General Manager, Eastsound Water Users Association (EWUA) — It is hard to miss the distressing news of high lead concentrations found in the public water supply in Flint, Michigan. Unfortunately this will be one of the most significant public health system failures in American history, with children being … Continue reading

Citizen Volunteers Needed: Land Bank, Anyone?

— from Tanja Williamson — The County Council is searching for a San Juan County citizen to fill an upcoming vacancy on the San Juan County Land Bank Commission. District Two position – partial four year position expiring December 2019 (Orcas, Crane, Obstruction, & Waldron Islands) If you are interested in serving … Continue reading

Ranker Notes Passing of Harriet Spanel

Sen. Kevin Ranker, D-Orcas Island, released this statement [on Feb. 2, 2016] on the passing of former Sen. Harriet Spanel, his predecessor as senator representing the 40th Legislative District. “I am extremely saddened to hear of the loss of Harriet Spanel. She was a dear friend and mentor to me. … Continue reading

Guest Opinion: How Should We Be Looking at Energy Use and Conservation?


— by Tom Owens — OPALCO — ¨Clean All The Time¨ Energy. Really? Overview OPALCO is now telling us that the energy they provide is ¨clean all the time.¨ This is a very important piece of information because it will influence our decisions on the use of energy. CO2 is … Continue reading

Eastsound Planning & Review Committee to Focus on Streetscapes

Thursday, Feb. 4, from 3 to 5 p.m. at the Eastsound Fire Hall The Eastsound Planning & Review Committee (EPRC) agenda for its regular monthly meeting calls for a discussion of the Streetscape Standards with County Public Works Director Brian Vincent and County Planner Colin Huntemer on such matters as: … Continue reading

Our Representatives Report: Senate Hearing on Rising Drug Costs Hints at Worse Prices Ahead


Ranker bill would require pharmaceutical companies to make pricing transparent — from Rick Manugian, Senate Democratic Communications — It’s been clear for some time that the skyrocketing price of prescription drugs is a major problem for thousands of Washingtonians whom rely upon these drugs, we now understand it is an … Continue reading

Our Representatives Report: Larsen Votes to Support Iran Nuclear Treaty

Larsen: Derailing Iran Agreement Short-Sighted, Ineffective — from the office of U.S. Rep. Rick Larsen– Rep. Rick Larsen, WA-02, [on Feb. 2, 2016] voted against a [House of Representtives] bill that would undermine the U.S. government’s ability to carry out the international agreement to prevent Iran from building a nuclear … Continue reading

Guest Opinion: We Are All Stakeholders of Dolphin Bay Road


— by Ken Katz — No one person owns our roads, libraries, schools and parks. These are for us to use now and preserve for future generations. We are all stakeholders of public assets in our community, the nation, and the world. All of us have different needs and wants … Continue reading

Sharon Abreu to Take “Climate Monologues” to LA

Sharon Abreu captures Spiritual Progressives with "The Left Hand of God"

— from Irthlingz — In 2010 Sharon Abreu did the first performance of her new show, “The Climate Monologues,” at The Orcas Grange. This March, Sharon will have the opportunity to bring “The Climate Monologues” to a wider audience as part of the Los Angeles Women’s Theatre Festival. Sharon explains, … Continue reading

Letter to the Editor: Thanks for the Apology!

— from Moriah and Daniel Armstrong — On Wednesday, as an Orcas Coop member, I was quite surprised to open an email from the coop encouraging folks to sign the “Preserve, Not Pave” petition regarding Dolphin Bay Road. I live on Dolphin Bay Road and am sincerely hoping that the … Continue reading

TEDx –Ideas Worth Sharing — Tickets on Sale Now

— from Gretchen Krampf for TEDx Orcas — Tickets for the Orcas Iasland TEDx (Technology, Entertainment, Design) talks are now on sale at www.tedxorcasisland.com Our conference will center on the theme of “Best of Both Worlds – the Potential in Polarity”. What is TEDx? In the spirit of “ideas worth … Continue reading

Fisherfolk! Fish with the American Legion Derby

— from Judi Resch for the American Legion — American Legion Post #93 will be hosting their 37th Annual Fishing Derby the weekend of January 29th-31st. Registration for the derby is from 4 – 11 p.m. on Friday, January 29th, at the Post home (793 Crescent Beach Dr., Eastsound). $50. … Continue reading