Tag Archive | "Bainbridge Island"

Schulze

City Council Approves Property Tax Increase for 2015

City Manager Doug Schulze gave a brief review to Council Tuesday night, October 28, of where every bit of a property tax dollar goes on Bainbridge Island. This brief presentation preceded the Council’s unanimous vote to enact a slight property tax increase.

Schulze used PowerPoint slides to show that the lion’s share, 30.6 percent, of property taxes goes to the Bainbridge Island School District. State of Washington schools get 21.89 percent. The City of Bainbridge Island takes a much smaller portion, 12.7 percent, followed by the Bainbridge Island Fire District, with 11.7 percent, and Kitsap County, with 10.5. The rest goes to Public Utilities District 1, o.7 percent, and the Kitsap Regional Library, 3.6 percent.

Schulze explained that the tax rate is $11.27. On a home with an assessed value of $500,000 the taxes would come to $5,634.80 of which $714 would go to COBI.

The approved increase amounts to 0.8901 percent, or $61,054, of the amount levied in 2015, or $6,859,383, plus any increases to property values, which come to $53,882. With the tax refund amount being $18,134, the total levy comes to $6,992,453 on total assessed valuation of $5,713,489,997. Assessed valuation would in fact decrease the levy rate from $1.309 to $1.221 per $1,000.

The amount will got toward repaying general obligation bonds approved in 2001 to finance the costs of acquiring and preserving forested areas, open space, wildlife habitat, and farms and agricultural lands and creating new trails and passive parks. The debt service on those bonds for the year 2015 will be $607,700.

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The Virtues of Visiting Cannon Beach in the off Season (w/ Photo Gallery)

Why drive down to Cannon Beach during the “off season,” with possibly blustery rain and cold temps? Some might respond, It’s Cannon Beach, ‘nough said.

But here are more reasons. It’s cheaper than Hawaii. It’s arguably the most beautiful time of year there. The rates are way reduced. You’ve got the place to yourself, more or less. It’s far enough away to feel like you’re on vacation but an accessible half-day’s drive—four to five hours from Bainbridge Island—and a lovely one, especially if you stay west off of I-5. Your dogs can run free on the beach with official sanction from the State of Oregon, and your four-leggeds won’t give a fig if it’s raining.

Ocean Street, Cannon Beach.

Ocean Street.

Haven’t been to Cannon Beach, Oregon, you say? To quote Gandalf, “Fly, you fools. . . .”

The worst thing that can happen to you in Cannon Beach during the off season is getting wet. Sound familiar? The lovely part is you’re doing it on one of the most stunning beaches on the entire west coast, in sand rather than mud, and with Haystack Rock as your spirit guide. Plus, you’re on vacation, so after you venture out into the elements with your happy kids and dogs and fashionista Gortex, you get to go back to your hotel room, suite, cottage, or rental house, strip off your wet garb, dry off, and head out for a reward of brownies and coffee, chili and beer, fish and wine, Mexican and margaritas. . . . Or you can kick back with room service and games and/or movies.

Ecola State Park.

Ecola State Park.

Although some blessed days in late fall, winter, and early spring bring sun, go prepared for wind and rain. Take layers. Take ample changes of clothing and shoes. Get a place with a stove or fireplace to cozy up to. With this arsenal, you will be prepared for literally any weather, and you will be undaunted to venture out to explore the beach and nearby parks, which are worth getting wet, muddy, wind-blown, and hungry for.

The main strip of Cannon Beach will keep you occupied from south to north for 3-4 hours of  walking. But don’t skip Ecola State Park, which is a picturesque 10-minute drive north of downtown Cannon Beach. The gorgeous wooded bluff hike from there to Indian Beach is about 2 hours roundtrip of up and down winding. If you’re feeling ambitious, you can extend the hike from Ecola Point up to Tillamook Head. Oswald State Park, a short drive south, is also well worth visiting for the view.

California newt.

California newt.

My family has stayed in many places in Cannon Beach over the years. Our current favorite (no affiliation) is the Surfsand Resort. They have increased their dog-friendly rooms to over 50 percent in the last few years in response to popular demand. But this is no squalid doggy motel. The Surfsand is an upscale establishment with appeal for families with or without canines. In addition to offering excellent (30-60 percent off) off-season rates, it sports attractive and comfortable accommodations (all renovated within the last 3-4 years); beach-front rooms; an indoor pool and hot tub; a workout room; friendly and professional service; and lots of feel-good complimentary amenities, including a DVD library and game collection, microwave popcorn, daily afternoon cookies and milk, and treats for kids and dogs alike.

Indian Beach, Ecola State Park.

Indian Beach, Ecola State Park.

Make sure to build in time for puttering around downtown. Whether you want to check out the art galleries, get a toy for your kid or dog, buy a bottle of fine wine, or sample some locally made ice cream, you’ll find plenty to hold your attention.

So, wherever you land in Cannon Beach during the off season, be prepared to leave a little piece of your heart there, and, as always, bring home some sand in your shoes.

Please allow the photo gallery a few moments to load. Note that some images are enhanced with raindrops.

  • Ocean Street.

  • Dunes leading to beach.

  • Cannon Beach.

  • Glimmering Haystack Rock.

  • Gulls.

  • North end of Cannon Beach.

  • Rainy Cannon Beach.

  • Ecola River flowing into Pacific Ocean.

  • Rainy Cannon Beach.

  • Ecola River.

  • Ecola River.

  • Ecola River.

  • Ecola River.

  • Grassy dunes on Cannon Beach.

  • Ecola Point Trail.

  • Ecola Point Trail.

  • California newt.

  • Ecola State Park bluff.

  • Ecola Point Trail.

  • Ecola State Park bluff.

  • Indian Beach, Ecola State Park.

  • Indian Beach, Ecola State Park.

  • Downtown Cannon Beach.

  • Downtown Cannon Beach.

  • Downtown Cannon Beach.

  • Downtown Cannon Beach.

  • Downtown Cannon Beach.

  • Downtown Cannon Beach.

  • Scrub jay with peanut, downtown Cannon Beach.

  • Downtown Cannon Beach.

  • Cannon Beach neighborhood.

  • Cannon Beach neighborhood.

  • Downtown Cannon Beach.

[This article from the archives originally appeared February 23, 2012.]

Photos by Julie Hall; all rights reserved.

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salty dog wash sign

Muddy Mutt? DIY or Full-Service Grooming at Salty Dog Wash

Whether your dog needs a spiffy professional trim or a good long bath after break-dancing on a dead salmon, Salty Dog Wash is open for business and here to help.

Co-owners and long-time friends and Islanders Patty Keplinger and Alison Rice, with support from a third partner Heidi Story, opened Salty Dog to meet a variety of needs. Judging by the time they spent researching the business (over a year) and the setup they created, these women have thought of everything, from full-service grooming to do-it-yourself bathing, big dogs to little, geriatric to hyper hairy Harry.

DIY Dog Washing

salty dog wash

Alison Rice and Patty Keplinger

If you’re looking for an easy and affordable way to clean your canine yourself without a mess at home, Salty Dog offers what looks to be a pretty painless experience for both you and your pooch.

Keplinger explained that the tubs are custom-designed to provide stability and low noise; be spacious enough for large dogs or for those who want to stand in the tub while bathing their dog; and offer access on three sides for easy scrubbing. Traction matts prevent slipping, temperature-controlled water protects against scalding, and the kit and caboodle of aprons, soap, extension hoses, towels, and dryers at the ready make for an efficient process. Have a little dog? Elevated drop-in trays are available for your petite Petunia to stand in. Salty Dog even has child-sized aprons because, as Price explained, “Kids love to help wash their dogs.”

“When we first started telling people about offering self-service facilities for dog washing, people on Bainbridge didn’t get it,” Rice said. “But people from other larger communities like Seattle and San Diego are familiar with self-service dog washing and love it. . . . We wanted to meet the needs of those looking for a more affordable option or whose dogs are more comfortable being bathed by their owners.”

salty dogRice said that the concept is catching on fast. “We already have people who take their dogs for a run on the beach and come in to bathe them afterwards.”

Professional Grooming

Salty Dog Wash also offers professional grooming three days a week by appointment. Services include bathing, cutting, and nail clipping. When I stopped by for a visit, Keplinger and Rice had recently finished working on a large Bernese Mountain Dog, who they said literally took hours to bathe and unleashed a storm of hair. Their grooming prices depend on the level of service needed and the breed, as some take more time to clean and cut than others.

Grand Opening

Rice said that since opening their doors October 20 they could not have asked for a more positive response from the community.salty dog wash

Salty Dog Wash is located in Bainbridge Island’s Pleasant Beach neighborhood between PAWS and Island Cool. “We landed in an ideal spot, next to PAWS, which draws animal lovers, and with a landlord who loves animals,” said Keplinger, who estimates there are about 7,000 dogs on Bainbridge Island.

Keplinger, who has three dogs and initiated the idea for the business, said, “I thought about how I would want to spend my time until retirement and couldn’t think of anything better than being around dogs.”

Salty Dog Wash offers a free wash to newly adopted rescue dogs and to police K9 unit dogs.

They are currently hiring groomers.

Visit their Facebook page to learn more.

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Photos by Julie Hall.

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Astrology Weekly

Astrology Weekly 10/26/14: Your Far-Out Idea Seems Reasonable This Week

Here is the latest Astrology Weekly audio chat by Bainbridge Island astrologer, counselor, and radio personality Aleta McClelland:

Listen here.

Aleta McClelland

Listen to Aleta’s weekly radio show, Aleta’s Audacity, on www.12radio.com Wednesdays at noon.

To make an appointment for a personalized astrological reading from Aleta, visit her website: acourseinconsciousness.com.

You can read more about Aleta in our article Aleta McClelland: Ace Astrologer.

Photos courtesy of Chad Miller and Richard McClelland.

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macaw at battle point park

Unusual Bird Sighting at Battle Point Park

There is certainly colorful bird life at Battle Point Park, but none quite so exotic as the macaw sighted there yesterday.

His person, who preferred not to be named, told curious kids that her bird Geranimo (spelled with an a, not an o) plays catch with her with a ball and likes to eat walnuts, seeds, beans, popcorn, and watermelon. He loses and regrows all of his feathers each year. In addition to preening himself, he preens his friend by stroking her hair with his beak.

The Bainbridge Island resident adopted Geranimo a year and a half ago after he had been living in a warehouse. The man who raised him from an egg in the San Francisco Bay area had become homeless and finally surrendered his bird to a rescue organization. macaw at battle point park

Geramino’s person walks him regularly in Bainbridge parks. She said she is trying to introduce him to more people and educate them about birds. She plans to get a second bird to keep him company, as macaws are flock birds. Geranimo, 33, could live to up to 100 years.

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Photos by Julie Hall. 

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Astrology Weekly

Astrology Weekly 10/19/14: Eclipse Means Chance for Rebirth

Here is the latest Astrology Weekly audio chat by Bainbridge Island astrologer, counselor, and radio personality Aleta McClelland:

Listen here.

Aleta McClelland

Listen to Aleta’s weekly radio show, Aleta’s Audacity, on www.12radio.com Wednesdays at noon.

To make an appointment for a personalized astrological reading from Aleta, visit her website: acourseinconsciousness.com.

You can read more about Aleta in our article Aleta McClelland: Ace Astrologer.

Photos courtesy of Chad Miller and Richard McClelland.

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mailbag

Letter to the Editor: More Trees Coming Down in Winslow & Short Notice for Public Input

A new housing development is in the works for the mostly forested SW corner of Grow and Wyatt Way in Winslow. A developer would like to build 19 housing units on the mostly forested 4.5-acre parcel. Public meetings are required for this sort of development. A public meeting will be held to discuss the preliminary short platt on Monday night, October 20, at 6 p.m. Notice for this meeting was only sent out to the immediate neighborhood and not until the 15th of October. Whatever happened to ten days notice? Once again it seems the city is anything but eager to involve citizens in land-use decisions.

The primary issues pertaining to this development are traffic and storm water. Adding 19 housing units to the SW corner of Grow and Wyatt is going to have obvious impact on the nearby intersections. In regards to adding more storm water to existing facilities: Are those facilities adequate even for existing demand? Numerous sewage spills into Eagle Harbor over the past year suggest not. We have an opportunity, early in the process, to ask some hard questions. Sewer and storm water should be at the top of the list.

According to the state’s Growth Management Act, the city is responsible for providing adequate capital facilities, including sewer and storm water, for future development. Frequent sewage spills into Eagle Harbor point to a storm water and sewage system that is not servicing existing needs of Winslow, much less those of future development there.

It should also be noted that this development would remove a significant number of trees. Trees and native soils help to reduce storm water runoff and contribute to aquifer recharge. If you would like to advocate for saving as many trees as possible on this development site, this is the time to get involved.

Please show up at the public meeting tomorrow night at City Hall.

—Ron Peltier
Bainbridge Island

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rainy road

Weather: A Very Rainy Week Ahead

A warm sunny day today with temps drifting up to about 70 degrees F will give way to clouds tonight and at times heavy rain throughout the week.

Here is the National Weather Service Forecast for Bainbridge Island:

  • Sunday Partly sunny, with a high near 70 degrees F. South wind 9 to 11 mph.
  • Sunday Night A 50 percent chance of rain after 11 p.m., with a low around 58 degrees F. South-southwest wind 8 to 13 mph.
  • Monday A 90 percent likelihood of rain, with up to a quarter inch possible. High near 61 degrees F. South wind 8 to 10 mph.
  • Monday Night A 60 percent chance of rain. A low around 53 degrees F. South wind 7 to 13 mph.
  • Tuesday Rain likely, mainly after 11 a.m. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 61 degrees F. South wind 11 to 16 mph. Chance of precipitation is 60 percent.
  • Tuesday Night Rain likely, with a low around 54 degrees F.
  • Wednesday A 90 percent chance of rain. High near 61 degrees F.
  • Wednesday Night Rain likely, with a low around 56 degrees F.
  • Thursday Rain likely, with a high near 61 degrees F.
  • Thursday Night Rain likely, with a low around 53 degrees F.

Photo by Julie Hall. 

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la time ferry video

LA Times Calls Ferry Trip to Bainbridge Best Bang for Buck in Seattle Sightseeing

Recent ferry bungles and breakdowns aside, that ride from the world to our little Island is pretty dreamy, especially when there are orcas about, as there were yesterday. We know it, and now Los Angelenos do too. A recent Los Angeles Times article suggested that visitors to Seattle just might get the most fun for their money riding the big boat to Bainbridge Island.

Part of the LA Times new “A Minute Away” series, the article features a video of the ferry trip, with swell views of the Seattle skyline, the Bainbridge waterfront, and speeded up moments of commuters doing their thing. See someone you know?

Check out the article and video.

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Walla Walla

Ferry Travel Advisory: Wenatchee Replaced & Colman Dock Access Changed

Ferry riders should take note of two changes affecting travel between Bainbridge Island and Seattle.

The 202-car Wenatchee will be removed from service temporarily from Sunday October 19 through the end of Tuesday October 21 for its required annual U.S. Coast Guard safety inspection. The 188-car Walla Walla will replace the Wenatchee. Washington State Ferries (WSF) warns that drive-on customers may experience heavier traffic and possible longer waits during this time.

Travelers should also be aware that the second part of the Seattle Seawall construction project is underway. Seattle ferry terminal access on Alaskan Way has shifted one block south, from Spring Street to just south of the intersection of Madison Street. Pedestrian and bicycle access to Colman Dock will be maintained in the current locations.

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Photo by Julie Hall.

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Fay Bainbridge by Anne Willhoit

Photos of the Day: Rain Break at Fay Bainbridge

Bainbridge Island resident Anne Willhoit took this photograph yesterday at Fay Bainbridge beach. She said she and her kids were happy to see the sun after a rainy morning.

Thanks for sharing Anne!

Fay Bainbridge by Anne Willhoit

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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car accident Eagle Harbor Drive

Car Veers and ‘Cartwheels’ Over 200 Feet off Eagle Harbor Drive Wednesday Night

Just after 10 p.m. last night, October 15, a driver of a 2011 Nissan Rogue heading south on Eagle Harbor Drive veered to the right off the road. The car traveled about 175 feet on the shoulder and then began to “cartwheel,” flipping over and over in the ditch for another 50 feet before coming to rest nose down.

Bainbridge Island police and firefighters responded to the scene simultaneously. The driver, a 52-year-old Bainbridge resident, was pinned in the vehicle by his seat, airbags, and seatbelt. Fire Marshal Luke Carpenter said a dozen firefighters worked for about 12 minutes to extricate the trapped driver, who was alone in the totaled car.

The driver was airlifted to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle with serious injuries. Eagle Harbor Drive was closed for approximately one hour.

Alcohol may have been a factor in the accident. It is currently being investigated by BIPD.car accident Eagle Harbor Drive

While this incident was being handled, two other medical incidents on the Island required units from the Poulsbo Fire Department and North Kitsap Fire and Rescue to assist.

Photos courtesy of BIFD.

 

airlift at night

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The Pumpkin Walk: My Favorite Fall Night on Bainbridge

One of the pleasures of being a parent on Bainbridge is having an “excuse” to go to the annual Pumpkin Walk at Bainbridge Gardens, which this year is this Friday and Saturday, October 17-18, from 6 to 8 p.m. It’s a simple formula. Islanders carve pumpkins and donate them for the event. And people come to see them lit up in the dark along the wooded trail that runs behind the garden center.

There is a lot more to see and do at the Pumpkin Walk than this, but the walk through the woods is always my favorite part. The first time I went, when my daughter was a mere babe in the woods, I had a hazy idea that the pumpkins were carved by “professionals.” Professional pumpkin carvers. Or maybe some Secret Society of Bainbridge Gardens Artists. It simply didn’t compute that there could be so many talented “regular folks” around the Island donating their carvings—upwards of 300 each year.cats pumpkin walk

I know there are carving kits, but I remain impressed. Who are these people, I still wonder every time I go, which is pretty much each of the last 10 years. I carve a pretty good pumpkin myself, but many of these are works of art I couldn’t touch.

Sure, there are standards that you see every year, like scary witches in spiked hats, cats with arched backs, creepy skeletons, fanged draculas, spiders in webs, ghosts, and wolves howling at the moon. But this Halloween iconography never tires, because, well, it is fun, but also because so many of the carvings are so good they never fail to delight. The “creative” entries are always a treat, too. Things like Snow White and the Seven Dwarves and and tributes to Steve Jobs and Michael Jackson have been clever surprises. But my favorites always remain the Halloween basics no matter how many times I’ve seen them before.

dancers pumpkin walkMany of the parents, including myself, feel it is their duty to make a fuss over the highlights along the path, pointing out for the children the spider there, exclaiming at the spooky witch here, while also not neglecting to call attention to the cute “face” that was obviously carved by a kid new to the art.

The Boys and Girls Club of Bainbridge Island helps run the Pumpkin Walk, and donations go to benefit them. The event also features a Harvest Hay Maze, bouncy house, live music, face painting, and carnival games with prizes. The New Rose Cafe offers hotdogs, pizza, chili, treats, and hot drinks. We never neglect to get our photo taken with “The Great Pumpkin,” a guy in a pumpkin suit who gives out candy. And we always run into dozens of people we know, also having a good time. Even a few years ago during a drenching deluge we still went, as always with our neighbors, and didn’t regret it.pumpkin walk

Indeed, the whole event is fun, but the real show is that short dark walk through the woods holding your child’s hand and traveling back to a place in your own imagination when Halloween held you in its thrillingly frightful web.

The Boys and Girls Club gratefully takes donations to this officially free event. For more information, go to www.bainbridgegardens.com.

[From the archives: First published October 16, 2011.]

Photos by Julie Hall.

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rabies by Steve, Kristina, Evan, and Ai

Rabies Found in One Bat on Bainbridge and Two Others in Kitsap

Three bats in Kitsap County have recently tested positive for rabies. One bat from Bainbridge Island tested positive on September 19. Two others, one from Kingston and another from Bremerton, tested positive for the disease on October 3.

According to the Kitsap Public Health District, although rabies is endemic in Washington, having three bats test positive in a short period of time is unusual. Since March, the Health District has tested 15 bats in Kitsap with known or potential contact with humans, and these three were the only ones with positive results. Bats are currently the only known reservoir for rabies in Washington State. Rabies is not endemic in raccoons, coyotes, foxes, or other wild carnivores here; however, on rare occasions bats bite other animals and transmit rabies.

Rabies Symptoms

Although there has been at least one known case of a person surviving rabies without vaccination, it is considered a fatal disease that kills within seven days after the appearance of symptoms. The deadly virus kills over 55,000 people each year and is present on all continents except Antarctica.

According to the Mayo Clinic, rabies symptoms include the following:

  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Agitation
  • Anxiety
  • Confusion
  • Hyperactivity
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Excessive salivation
  • Fear of water (hydrophobia) because of the difficulty in swallowing
  • Hallucinations
  • Insomnia
  • Partial paralysis

Rabies Treatment

Rabies is preventable with a vaccine that can be administered either before or after the disease has been contracted. Those at high risk of encountering rabies, such as veterinarians and lab workers, are advised to receive the pre-exposure vaccine as a preventative measure. The post-exposure prophylaxis, or PEP treatment, is only effective before the onset of symptoms, so people believed to be exposed to a rabid animal should undergo treatment immediately.

The Health District recommends PEP vaccinating prior to receiving test results in cases in which an animal has shown obvious signs of being rabid. Treatment can be discontinued if the animal is found to be negative for rabies. The Kitsap Public Health District is available for consultation and to help facilitate testing animals for rabies at the Washington State Public Health Laboratories if needed.

Call 360-337-5235 with questions or to report suspected exposure.

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Photo courtesy of Steve, Kristina, Evan, and Ai.

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Astrology Weekly

Astrology Weekly 10/12/14: ‘Tween 2 Eclipses, Let the Stuff Come Up

Here is the latest Astrology Weekly audio chat by Bainbridge Island astrologer, counselor, and radio personality Aleta McClelland:

Listen here.

Aleta McClelland

Listen to Aleta’s weekly radio show, Aleta’s Audacity, on www.12radio.com Wednesdays at noon.

To make an appointment for a personalized astrological reading from Aleta, visit her website: acourseinconsciousness.com.

You can read more about Aleta in our article Aleta McClelland: Ace Astrologer.

Photos courtesy of Chad Miller and Richard McClelland.

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october 3 art walk

Liquor Control Board Makes Downtown Businesses Booze Bust at Friday’s Art Walk

Last week’s First Friday Art Walk, a monthly evening tradition in downtown Bainbridge art venues, wineries, and select stores, was interrupted when a liquor enforcement officer from the Washington State Liquor Control Board (WSLCB) began asking area merchants if they had permits to serve alcohol at a public event. The officer, Raj Veluppillai, said he stopped in at eight to ten establishments and found that none had appropriate permits.

Veluppillai, who is assigned to cover Bainbridge Island and neighboring Kitsap communities, said he had been on Bainbridge that day talking to a couple of local eateries about permitting issues when he saw people in Winslow walking on the street with open alcohol. He said he observed Art Walk businesses serving free beer and wine without carding or monitoring consumption and people walking from one establishment to another with open cups. WSLCB Captain Lisa Ranke said one Renton-based business was offering free wine tastings and selling bottles on the street.

Veluppillai told me he tried not to embarrass the business owners and did not issue citations but did ask them to stop serving and to wind down the event, making it clear that they could not continue in the future without proper permits. He said most of the business owners were nice about it but that he was surprised by the scene: “It was like 1940s Nevada. It was a whole bunch of businesses. I’ve worked this job for many years and never seen anything quite like it.”

Danger coowner Sara Baetz was serving that night and said the officer asked people on the street to pour out their liquor. Like other Art Walk merchants, she said she wanted to comply with state law but wasn’t sure yet how. Bainbridge Arts and Crafts (a nonprofit) publicist Lindsay Masters echoed Baetz’s sentiment and said that the Bainbridge Island Downtown Association (BIDA) had indicated they would take the lead on the issue.

When I asked Ranke about options for Art Walk businesses, she said probably the best route would be for a nonprofit hosting organization to purchase a special occasion permit ($60/day per event) that would enable other participating businesses in town to serve liquor on their premises. She said Beth Layman in Customer Service issues special occasion permits and can be reached at 360-664-1792.

I asked Ranke if WSLCB would issue retroactive tickets when the investigation into the matter concludes. She said, “We could ticket, but we would look at the totality of the situation, and I can’t see our officer writing a violation.” Ranke commented that there are numerous other art walks and similar events in the region, saying, “We don’t want to ruin anyone’s fun.”

BIDA Program Manager Joan Campbell was looking into the matter today. When I spoke with her this afternoon she was aware of the special occasion license option. I asked her if BIDA would be willing to be the hosting organization for future Art Walks. She said, ”We’re going to handle it to the best of our ability. We want to work with all the Art Walk participants to keep this [liquor] part of the tradition because it’s something people want.” But, she explained, they have to check with their insurance company and determine if it is feasible for them to take on the responsibility. “We’re just not sure at this point,” she said.

Owner of Island Gallery Susan Swannack-Nunn, owner of Island Gallery, said she used to get monthly licenses to serve liquor at the Art Walk but was told a year or two ago she no longer needed them. After looking into the situation, she provided an update for this article. She said that as a corporation she is eligible for a permit to service liquor on site and would be pursuing that option.

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Image courtesy of BIDA.

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foggy road by JonDissed

Weather: Fog Hazard Starts the Week

Expect a foggy start to the week. Here is the National Weather Service forecast for Bainbridge Island:

  • Monday Fog before 11 a.m. Otherwise, cloudy and then gradually becoming mostly sunny, with a high near 69 degrees F. Calm wind becoming north-northeast around 6 mph in the afternoon.
  • Monday Night Patchy fog after 11 p.m. Otherwise, increasing clouds, with a low around 57 degrees F. North-northeast wind around 7 mph.
  • Tuesday Areas of fog before 11 a.m. Otherwise, mostly cloudy with a high near 67 degrees. North-northeast wind 5 to 7 mph.
  • Tuesday Night Mostly cloudy, with a low around 51 degrees F. North wind 5 to 8 mph.

Photo by JonDissed.

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Astrology Weekly

Astrology Weekly 9/4/14: Make Room for the New, Kick the Crud to the Curb

Here is the latest Astrology Weekly audio chat by Bainbridge Island astrologer, counselor, and radio personality Aleta McClelland:

Listen here.

Aleta McClelland

Listen to Aleta’s weekly radio show, Aleta’s Audacity, on www.12radio.com Wednesdays at noon.

To make an appointment for a personalized astrological reading from Aleta, visit her website: acourseinconsciousness.com.

You can read more about Aleta in our article Aleta McClelland: Ace Astrologer.

Photos courtesy of Chad Miller and Richard McClelland.

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pumpkins by beth robson

Photo of the Day: Git Yer Big Fat Perfect Punkin’ While the Gittin’s Good

Hey folks, it’s October already, and now’s the time to choose your favorite Halloween squash(es) from Bainbridge’s own Suyematsu & Bentryn Family Farms before the best of the lot is sold out. Seem early? No lie, they go fast.

One of the largest working farms on Bainbridge Island and in broader Kitsap, this 40-acre farm grows—in addition to pumpkins—raspberries, corn, grapes, potatoes, garlic, onions, and seasonal greens.

Find the farm one-quarter mile east of Highway 305 on Day Road.

Hours vary. Learn more at the farm’s website. 

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Photo of the Suyematsu & Bentryn Family Farms pumpkin patch courtesy of Bainbridge Island photographer Elisabeth Robson.

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Sensory Processing Disorder Part 1: Defining It

October is National Sensory Awareness Month. As part of this national education effort, Inside Bainbridge is publishing a series on Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD), citing the latest research, information from experts in the field, and personal stories from parents, caregivers, and kids affected by the condition. (Family names have been changed for privacy.) Read the other articles in the series:

The elegance of the animal brain and neurological system makes complex processes seem simple. Our sensory systems tell us where to place our feet, how to maneuver through space, which sounds to ignore and which to attend to, what to focus on in our visual field, how to chew and swallow without choking, when to speak and when to listen, and countless other actions each minute of each day.

bored kids in classroom

All kids have different learning styles, and this teaching method apparently isn’t working.

A child in a classroom, for example, has to filter out noises from other classrooms, buzzing lights, shuffling feet, and a host of other extraneous sounds in order to focus on the most important sound—the teacher’s voice. This can be challenging at times for many children, but for kids with sensory processing disorder it can be downright exhausting, painful, or even at times impossible.

What SPD Is Not

Sensory Processing Disorder is not ADD or ADHD, although it is often misdiagnosed as such. It also is not a form of autism or Asberger’s, though sensory processing problems often accompany those spectrum conditions. SPD is not a “learning disability” per se, but it may lead to learning and emotional problems.

What SPD Is

Research on SPD began in earnest in the 1960s and 1970s with the work of neuroscientist and occupational therapist Dr. Anna Jean Ayres. She described SPD as a neurological “traffic jam” preventing parts of the brain from receiving the information needed to accurately interpret sensory information.

Some peoples’ fun is other peoples’ sensory nightmare.

Extensive research and practitioner work has followed Ayres’s pioneering studies, but a widespread lack of awareness and understanding of SPD still persist in the general population. Some remain skeptical, dismissive, or simply unaware of the condition. But for families, caregivers, and educators dealing with kids displaying SPD symptoms, the condition is very real.

A current goal of the Sensory Processing Disorder Foundation is to get recognition for SPD in the next edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), due out in 2013. Difficulty getting recognition for “newly emerging” diagnostic conditions is old news. Before 1980, autism was labeled a form of childhood schizophrenia, and the full autism spectrum wasn’t included in the DSM until 1987.

A 2004 study conducted by the SPD Foundation found that “at least 1 in 20 children’s daily lives is affected by SPD.” A 2009 study suggested that “1 in 6 children experiences sensory challenges sufficient to disrupt their academic, social, and/or emotional development.”

Based on new research, the SPD Foundation, led by Director Lucy Jane Miller, Ph.D., OTR, identifies three major categories of SPD:

  1. Sensory Modulation Disorder. This includes sensory overresponsivity, sensory underresponsivity, and sensory-seeking behaviors, or combinations thereof. People with this condition can alternate from one state to the other, sometimes seeking stimulation, for example with hand flapping or spinning, and at other times retreating from stimulation by hiding or going off alone.
  2. Sensory Discrimination Disorder. This includes difficulty with accurate perception of all the five senses, plus proprioceptive awareness (knowing how much pressure to exert), vestibular awareness (knowing where you are in space), and interoceptive awareness (being aware of your bodily functions, like hunger and the need to go to the bathroom). People with sensory discrimination problems may have trouble reading because they can’t discriminate between letters, or they may have trouble identifying who is speaking to them because they can’t locate the sources of sounds.
  3. Sensory-Based Motor Disorder. This includes postural disorders and/or dyspraxia (difficulty planning and carrying out motor tasks). People with sensory motor problems may have low muscle tone, difficulty holding utensils, poor posture, trouble with balance, and low stamina.

Terry and Jan in Seattle have a son, Eli, who slumps and has trouble holding his pencil firmly when he writes and draws. He has difficulty sitting up straight at school and at the dinner table, and his handwriting is poor. Sometimes he falls out of his chair. Eli’s Sensory Motor Disorder makes him unable to keep up with playground activities and leaves him feeling socially isolated and embarrassed, especially around the other boys in his class.

People with SPD may have problems in one, two, or all three areas, to varying degrees. The often very different manifestations of SPD make it a challenge to diagnose and treat. It can be bewildering to people unfamiliar with the condition, making it easy to mistake as the result of poor parenting or character flaws such as stubbornness, belligerence, laziness, or lack of intelligence.

Morgan and Jim, parents in Portland, have two kids with SPD, displaying two very different forms of Sensory Modulation Disorder. Their daughter is generally overresponsive to sensory input, screaming at mild pain and dissolving into long crying fits, even in public, over minor disappointments. Their son, on the other hand, is sensory-seeking, often hitting, biting, touching, and talking excessively in school and at home. Both children are highly intelligent, which is not uncommon for children with SPD.

Boy on metal climbing ladder.

SPD can feel insurmountable.

According to Paula Jarrard, MS, OTR, and doctoral candidate at Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions, there is a correlation between giftedness and SPD. She based her conclusions partly on two studies, one by the SPD Foundation that found that 35 percent of the children in one large sample (n=500) from a gifted and talented center exhibited symptoms of SPD. The second study showed that almost 17 percent of gifted children that were tested at a different center had SPD.

Although a significantly higher-than-average number of SPD kids may be gifted, they often suffer from low self-esteem, anxiety, and poor school performance, leading to underachievement in adulthood.

Bainbridge Island pyschotherapist Elizabeth Turner, who works with many SPD children, explains that their difficulty filtering and interpreting sensory information can create chronic stress: “Sensory-challenging situations, like chaotic classrooms, for example, can feel overwhelming and create an anxiety response that becomes physiologically wired into the nervous system. These kids develop a flight, fight, or freeze reaction that becomes involuntary without intervention.”

So what begins as a neurological difference in SPD kids often develops into a socially isolating and emotionally debilitating condition. In the next feature in this series, I will examine what it’s like living with SPD from the point of view of those who have it and their parents and caregivers.

[This article from the archives originally appeared on Inside Bainbridge October 19, 2011.]

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Images courtesy of Mike Baird, Reiner Kraft, and James Emery.

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