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NEW: Part III Peterson Column: Climate Change
Keeshan Column: The Hillary Express
Evans Column: New Management, New Attitude
Things to do on Lopez - Orcas - San Juan

Letters DOE & Mar Vista

Today's Weather


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(screen capture photos from Musburger video)
A. Taylor Musburger was filming at the Friday Harbor Fly-in on Saturday when, well, as he posted on his Facebook page (
“Thinking that this airplane was going to do a fly by, I started recording.” But as the screen capture photo from his video shows: “Then we found out that he didn't know his gear wasn't all the way down.”

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The plane came to a stop, then smoke and out came the pilot holding a child followed by a woman. Based on the footage of the video, no one was injured.

ig_P_2014_Flyin-001 (21k image)

Saturday Fly-In In Friday Harbor


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(IG file photo)

Friday Harbor Fly-In and Open House is Saturday, July 26, 2014. It all starts with Pancake Breakfast 8-10am, and the Fly-In 10am-3pm with free admission (come to the gate next to the airport tower. Read More Here

New Town Treasurer & Finance Director.


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(L to R: Kelle Wilson sworn in by Town Clerk Amy Taylor -IG photo)

The Town of Friday Harbor has appointed Kelle Wilson the New Town Treasurer and Finance Director.

The office of Treasurer is an elected position. Wendy Picinich, who held the position of Treasurer and Finance Officer for 30+ years, retired this June. Wilson has been performing the duties of the Treasurer and acting as interim Finance Officer since Picinich’s retirement.

Seal Pup Protocol

ig_Harbor_Seal_Pup-002 (20k image)By Julie Duke

Harbor Seals, being marine mammals, come under the authority of the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), and are covered by the Marine Mammal Protection Act, which makes it a federal offence to touch, harass, injure or feed any marine mammal, including Harbor Seal pups.

Read full story

Pro & Con Statements On FH Transportation District Needed For Voters’ Pamphlet

The Town is looking for volunteers to create pro and con statements for the Friday Harbor Transportation Benefit District Voter’s Pamphlet for a two tenths of one percent (.02%) sales tax measure.

Read full story

SJI EMS Will Try Again For A Tax Levy

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The last time the San Juan County Public Hospital District (Board) asked voters to approve a measure that would enact a permanent maximum tax rate of $.50 per thousand of appraised value of property; the highest rate allowed by the law (an increase from the current $.35 cents), the voters said No Thank You..

This time they are asking voters to approve a replace levy for the remaining two years of the current six year levy, and allow stable funding for personnel, ambulances, equipment, and overall EMS operations for an additional six years, taking effect in 2015.

Read full story

FH Airport Receives $1.2 M Fed Fundng

U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), Chair of the Senate Transportation Appropriations Subcommittee, applauded the U.S. Department of Transportation’s announcement that the Friday Harbor Airport in the San Juan Islands will receive $1.2 million in federal funding.

Read full story

July 26: Fly-In & Community Open House

ig_P_2013_FlyIn-001 (98k image)
(IG file photo)

Friday Harbor Fly-In and Open House is Saturday, July 26, 2014. It all starts with Pancake Breakfast 8-10am, and the Fly-In 10am-3pm with free admission (come to the gate next to the airport tower.

Read full story

Town Approves Downriggers Building Locations & Heights

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The Town of Friday Harbor Council has voted unanimously to approve the location and height of the Spring Street Landing complex, which is just one more step forward that will allow rebuilding on the site of the former Downriggers building.

Read full story

Town Honors King Fitch


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(IG -photo)

Retired Town Of Friday Harbor Administrator King Fitch attended last Thursdays town council meeting and was more than a little surprised after current Town Administrator Duncan Wilson informed the Town Council members that for administrative reasons the Town was required to name an access road on town property, and after consideration of names they all agreed on a name, at which point he held up a new road sign proclaiming “FITCH ROAD.” Duncan then presented the sign to Fitch and told him: “A sign has already been posted on the road, so you can have that one.”

Airplane Rolls Down Hill At Roche Harbor

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(Nick Lange photos)

Well, At Least It Stopped At the Stop Sign. A Twin engine airplane parked at Roche Harbor rolled down from the upper parking area, went across the access road and came to stop directly in front of a stop sign by the stone gate, where it was found siting early Thursday morning.

Read full story

Town Serious On Trout Lake Trespassing

ig_Trout_Lake-V2 (17k image)(Trout Lake - Water Source For Friday Harbor Water System-TFH Photo)
The Town of Friday Harbor has recently installed security cameras to monitor activity at the Trout Lake Dam and to regulate access to the Town’s water shed.

Trout Lake is an environmentally sensitive area consisting of approximately 600 acres that supplies the drinking water for the Town of Friday Harbor.The Town reports: "Town officials were greatly disturbed to find evidence of significant trespassing activity at the lake which was detected with these security cameras."

Read full story

-- Guest Column --

OPALCO’s Legal Costs Spotlighted

ig_Alex_MacLeod-2 (30k image)By Alex MacLeod

When I wrote last month (Related Column) saying it was my belief OPALCO Board members and senior managers had not been honest when they publicly denied any involvement in threatening letters sent to a former Board member and sitting County Councilman, I knew more than I revealed.

Read full story

One Dead, Two Safe After Car Enters Deep Private Pond On SJI

(UPDATED 11:05 AM, 7-15-14) San Juan Island EMS, San Juan Island Fire, and the San Juan County Sheriff’s Office responded Monday afternoon at 2:13 pm to a report of an occupied vehicle submerged in a pond at a residence near False Bay.

Upon arrival of first responders, two of the three occupants had self-rescued from the vehicle, with the third, identified as Lester Gunther, trapped inside the fully submerged car. First responders were on scene within seven minutes of the 911 call.

Read full story

Council Moves On Motion To Study Impacts Of Large Greenhouses

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((IG photo)

The County Council passed a motion Tuesday in a split vote (2 to 1, Hughes voted “No”) to study the potential impacts of green houses.

The fear -and the desire by some- the Council would pass a temporary moratorium suggested by Councilman Bob Jarman was discussed and rejected, but a second motion by Jarman to send the matter off to the planning commission was supported and voted for by Councilman Jamie Stephens over the objections of Councilman Rick Hughes.

The following is the approved motion:

Read full story

SJC Fair Superintendents Needed

The County Fair is in critical need of superintendents for the Fine Art Department and the Photography Department. “It will not be possible for these departments to accept exhibitor entries unless we have a superintendent,” said Jennifer Allen, Fair Manager. “This is getting to the critical point as the Fair is just four weeks away.

Read full story

Larsen Responds To Local Vets For Improved Services

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Rep. Rick Larsen, WA-02, pushed this week for a bill to make sure veterans can access the health care and education they need.

Larsen is cosponsoring a bill that would fix the long wait times veterans face when seeking care at Department of Veterans Affairs’ (VA) doctors’ offices across the country.

Read full story

The British Are Coming: 16th Annual Encampment

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(NPS photo)

Re-enactors from throughout the Pacific Northwest and Canada will once again celebrate peace as they gather for the 16th Annual Encampment scheduled Saturday and Sunday, July 26-27 on the English Camp parade ground.

Encampment 2014 is free. Disabled persons should call the park at (360) 378-2240, ext. 2226, or 378-4409 for special access information.

Read full story

Saturday: Know Your Island Walk

SAT. JULY 26, 2014, 1 to 4PM: Meet Mike Buettell, Roche Harbor resident, world class hiker and volunteer trail builder, to return and further explore the Briggs Lake Trail in the Roche Harbor Highlands.

Click to view the rest of the article ******

Fair Photo Booth Help Needed

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Volunteers are needed to help out "manning the photo booth," and possibly assisting with setting up on Tuesday including accepting photographs for display, etc., & cleaning up on Sunday. A minimum of one person in the department between 10 a.m. and 9 p.m. beginning Wednesday and ending Saturday. During peak times two would be better. Email to offer help &/or for more information.

SJI Hospital District Community Advisory Committee?

A small group recently met to discuss forming a Community Advisory Committee to hopefully benefit Public Hospital District #1 residents. If formed it would be modeled after similar advisory groups successfully implemented in other areas of Washington State.

Click to view the rest of the article ******

Brickworks Mortgage Paid Off

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(SJI Ag Network photo)

The San Juan Islands Agricultural Guild announces that it has achieved its major goal of paying off the remaining mortgage on its downtown Friday Harbor Brickworks property.

Click to view the rest of the article ******

Free Sports Physicals For FHHS Students

Peace Island Medical Center doctors and nurses will donatetime to give free sports physicals for Friday Harbor High School athletes: Sunday, Aug 3rd, 3:00 to 7:00 PM in Hall Gym. Print forms necessary for the physical at:

SJI Preventin Coalition Head For Training In Florida

Health advocates from the San Juan Island Prevention Coalition will join more than 1,700 substance abuse prevention specialists from across the country at Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America's (CADCA) 2014 Mid-Year Training Institute in Orlando, Fla. July 20-24

Click to view the rest of the article ******

Lester Capell Gunther

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(December 3, 1925 ~ July 14, 2014

Beloved patriarch, dear friend, irascible coot, Lester Gunther perished Monday at his home on False Bay.

Born Dec. 3rd, 1925 in Paris, France, Les moved at the age of six to Montclair, New Jersey.

Click to view the rest of the article ******

WSF At FH Arts Fair

Learn more about vehicle reservations in weekend as WSF staff will be at the FHArts Fair Saturday and Sunday to explain vehicle reservation system coming to the SJ Islands Jan 2015; &/or go to for more information.

Probable Cause Editor Committed Trespass At Mar Vista

Legal problems stemming from the partial clearing of land without proper permits at the former Mar Vista resort continues even after the fact, with large unexpected additional fines against the owners, and criminal trespass charges brought by the County against a local editor who entered the property without permission.

Click to view the rest of the article ******

New Permit To Allow Vessel Dismantling On Water

The Washington Department of Ecology is developing a new water quality permit in response to the growing problem of older and sometimes abandoned marine vessels that can pose significant risks to Washington waters and to public health and safety. DOE is asking for public comments on the approach.

Click to view the rest of the article ******

FEMA To Revise Flood Insurance SJC Data

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Subcontractors for FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) will do a “field reconnaissance survey…coastal study” of San Juan coastline during the week of July 14, 2004.

A courtesy letter informing the County of the field trips by Starr/Atkins was sent by Josha Crowley, the Starr Team Lead, out of FEMA Regional Service Center in Lynwood,.

Click to view the rest of the article ******

Sunshine Laundry Fire In Friday Harbor

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(Contributed photo)

At 2:32 AM Tuesday a neighbor made the call to Dispatch who alerted San Juan Island Fire Rescue of a fire at the Sunshine Laundry.

Three engines and the Rescue unit responded as well as EMS. There were 14 firefighters, four officers, and three EMTs plus a Paramedic who ran the rehabilitation unit for the firefighters. OPALCO was there to shut off power to the building.

Click to view the rest of the article ******

Orcas Fire & Rescue CUP For Community Meetings

Orcas Island Fire and Rescue has filed for a Conditional Use Permit which would allow the community to hold meetings and events at the Deer Harbor Fire Station #24, 59 Channel Road, Deer Harbor.

Click to view the rest of the article ******

Perform At The Fair

Anyone interested in performing at this year’s Fair can fill out an on-line application at:
Enjoying the performances of local talent at the San Juan County Fair has always been one of the highlights for many fairgoers. Listening to a group of young players rock the stage with their band, watching a unique dance piece or just mellowing out to a friend’s solo acoustic set reminds us that the Fair is truly a showcase of our islands’ talents.

WSF Reservations In Jan 2015

Vehicle reservations are coming to the San Juan Islands in January 2015. WSF staff will be at the Anacortes terminal today, the Anacortes Farmers’ Market tomorrow, and the Orcas Island terminal on Sunday to tell you all about vehicle reservations. In the meantime, head over to for more info.

Pig War Picnic Success

The Kiwanis Club Pig War picnic on the 4th in Friday Harbor was "a raging success and a good time was had by all. Best of all, the picnic raised over $15,000, which will go towards helping kids in the community through scholarships, grants and other programs. The Kiwanis Club sends a Thank You for "being such a great community and coming together to celebrate our country and children at one great down-home festival."

Island Scenes: A Celebration of Place

"Island Scenes" display is in its 4th year at the County Fair. Island artists are asked to portray a scene which is here now that represents "old island'" and what we hope will be here in the future.

Click to view the rest of the article ******

SJC Foundation Awards $152K In College Scholarships

The San Juan Island Community Foundation is pleased to announce its award of scholarships for the 2014/2015 academic year to former and present San Juan Island high school students. Awards were made to continuing college students, high school students graduating this year, and individuals pursuing career training.

Click to view the rest of the article ******

Economic Development Element

On July 18 the San Juan County Planning Commission will continue deliberations from a previous hearing on adoption of an Economic Development Element of the San Juan County Comprehensive Plan.

Click to view the rest of the article ******

Comment On New Orcas Trail

The Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission is holding a public meeting on Orcas Island to discuss a proposal to develop a mountain bike trail in Moran State Park.

Click to view the rest of the article ******


Junk in the Trunk is just around the corner! The 2nd annual outdoor flea market will take place July 5th; from 5 to 8pm at the SJC Fairgrounds. Want to sell your junk? $25 gets you a space, 1 table, and 2 chairs! Visit the Fairgrounds website to learn more & get a vendor form!

National Exposure For Kings SJI Marathon

The 12th Annual Kings San Juan Island Marathon, Half Marathon and 10K held ilast weekend is the featured “Race of the Month” for June in the nationally published Runners World Magazine. The publication has a monthly circulation of 716,857. Both events were presented by Kings Market, for 12 years running. A portion of the proceeds goes to FHHS Purple & Gold.

Outgoing Mail Change For County

US Postal Service has announce that effective 07-28-14 “any mail accepted after 12:30 PM will not be dispatched for processing until the next business day.” The decision was made to move all mail processing from Everett to Seattle. Reason given for the change, yup, money. First-Class volume has dropped by 25% since 2006.

Penny Lee Williams

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August 24, 1943 ~ June 17, 2014

Penny Williams, devoted wife and loving mother went to be with her Lord and Savior on June 17th from complications of heart surgery.

Click to view the rest of the article ******

Walk The Forest Glen Trail

Sat. June 28, 2014, 1-4pm:walk the Forest Glen Trail in the Roche Harbor area, seeing the side trails and learning the walking opportunities there.

Click to view the rest of the article ******

Michael Eugene Copas

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February 22, 1958 ~ Friday, June 6, 2014

Michael Eugene Copas, 56, of Friday Harbor, Washington died Friday, June 6, 2014 in a motorcycle accident in Skagit County.

Click to view the rest of the article ******

Nick Power
John Evans
Mary Kalbert
Ron Keeshan
Gordy Petersen
Janice Peterson
Bruce Sallan
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