Candidates for Orcas Hospital District — File Soon Candidate filing now, online filing scheduled February 5 through February 9

— from Milene Henley, San Juan County Auditor — The San Juan County Council has approved, based on petitions submitted last summer, a proposition for the formation of a public hospital district on Orcas Island. The question of formation will go to the voters of Orcas Island in the April … Continue reading

Legislature Passes Capital Budget Comments from Sen. Ranker and Gov. Inslee

Last night, Jan. 18, the Washington State Senate passed a capital budget to put people to work and invest in our communities. Sen. Kevin Ranker, D-Orcas Island, released this statement after the Senate passed the state capital budget, investing $4.2 billion in more than 1,400 projects across the state, and … Continue reading

2017: What a Year, Far and Near

— by Margie Doyle — As the tumultuous year 2017 comes to an end, one of our pleasures is to look back on events as they happened. Our core belief is You can make a difference, and our reports, opinions and comments bear this out. Here for your pleasure is … Continue reading

Town Hall on Hospital District Draws Throngs of Islanders Next meeting to be Dec. 18

— by Susan McBain, Orcas Issues reporter, updated Dec. 4 at 5 p.m. — High Community Interest in Public Hospital District Town Hall Meeting More than 100 people crowded into the Orcas Fire District’s Eastsound meeting room on Thursday, Nov. 30, for the first of four Town Hall meetings sponsored … Continue reading

OPAL Gets Gift from Brita Brahce Affordable rentals one step closer with individual gift

— by Margie Doyle — A young woman values the community and mission of OPAL Community Land Trust and realizes that “the best things in life aren’t things.” And so when she was given the large (to her) gift of $50, her thought was to donate those funds to OPAL’s … Continue reading

Chamber to Light Christmas Tree on The Green NOTE: Inclement weather may cancel Friday event

Friday, December 1, 3:45 p.m., Village Green — from Orcas Island Chamber of Commerce — The Orcas Island (WA) Chamber of Commerce is pleased to announce its annual tree lighting festivities for Friday, December 1. (If we experience heavy rain and high winds in the afternoon there is a chance we … Continue reading

OPALCO Restores Power After Sunday Outage Two power poles broken and replaced on Shaw

— from — Sunday, November 26th @ 11:05 pm: Power restored. UPDATE: Sunday, Nov 26th @ 7:15pm: The OPALCO crew now estimates power restoration for Orcas, Shaw, Blakely and Crane by 10:00 pm tonight. They have installed two new transmission poles and restrung wire on seven spans – about … Continue reading

Mr. Music: Ken Speck Now a Hall-of-famer

— from Karen Key Speck — On Friday, November 3, 2017, Orcas islander Ken Speck received the Indiana Broadcasters Association / Indiana Broadcast Pioneers Richard M. Fairbanks Hall of Fame Award. Orcas Island Bandleader, Philanthropist, Star Trekkie, Percussionist and Realtor Ken was chosen for induction into the Indiana Hall of … Continue reading

Chamber of Commerce Awards Honor Community “Doers”

–– by Susan McBain, Orcas Issues reporter — The Orcas Island Chamber of Commerce held its 2017 Annual Meeting on Thursday, Oct. 26. Besides the usual good food, mingling, door prizes, and information on what’s been happening at the Chamber, the meeting featured the Chamber’s much-anticipated annual awards. Here are … Continue reading

The Addams Family – The Musical Opens at Orcas Center Tonight! Reception follows the Opening Night Performance, Thursday, Oct. 26

Opens Thursday, October 26 – 31, 7:30 p.m., Orcas Center — from Susannah Weaver for Orcas Center — Beginning October 26, Orcas Center will feature the award winning show The Addams Family – The Musical, on Center Stage with Seattle’s Sam Pettit directing an all-island cast.Bring the whole family for … Continue reading

Eastsound Water Attains First-in-State Water Quality Recognition State Dept. of Health and EPA conducted review

— from Paul Kamin, General Manager, Eastsound Water Users Association — Eastsound Waterhas recently achieved a State of Washington Water Treatment FIRST. During the period of Sept 11-13 Eastsound Water underwent an extensive review of our Purdue treatment plan by contractors for both the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and State … Continue reading

Ferry Alert: Schedule on Phone Application Incorrect Website has correct schedule

— from Washington State Ferries (WSDOT/Ferries– The WSDOT phone app is currently posting an incorrect sailing schedule. Please see the current/correct sailing schedule at: This alert was sent on 10/1/2017 at 8:59AM to subscribers of the following routes: Anacortes / Sidney B.C. (Victoria) Anacortes / San Juan Islands Port … Continue reading

OPALCO at Sea, Replacing the Submarine Cable Open House on San Juan and Orcas planned today and tomorrow

— by Margie Doyle — Personnel, mechanics and planning — were three more boring concepts ever entertained? Yet the day-in, day-out, years-long planning by dedicated, expert personnel into the esoteric and remote mechanics of marine cable installation, fiber-optic transmissions and battery insulation, among other topics are playing out in the … Continue reading

Reclaim the Rock — an Orcas Center First

Saturday, September 23, 1 – 7 p.m., Orcas Center’s Live Music Outback Stage “Reclaim the Rock,” aka Silly Season Cessation Soiree, is a mini-music festival outdoors behind Orcas Center, at Orcas Center’s new Outback Stage near the Storage Building. By Islanders, for Islanders! The lineup includes Funk Sway, Dust Bunnies, … Continue reading

Auditions for “A Christmas Carol” with Melinda Milligan — and Puppets!

Auditions Wednesday, Sept. 20 and Thursday, Sept. 21 at 6 p.m. at Orcas Center — by Margie Doyle — Melinda Milligan looks forward to casting a raft of rowdy Orcas actors and actresses — as well as a troupe of puppeteers — this week during auditions for “A Christmas Carol,” … Continue reading

Islanders Arrive En Masse at UW Medicine Meeting Sept. 11 is official start day for UW Medicine Orcas Island Clinic

Updated Sept. 8 at 11 p.m. — by Margie Doyle — After years of losing money and physicians, this month Orcas Medical Center will come under management by UW Medicine to meet the challenges of 21st-century rural medicine. UW Medicine will formally begin its oversight on Monday, Sept. 11 as … Continue reading