A candid slice of Island life, from short feature digests to guess-where snapshots.
Wander over to the Burton Coffee Stand and ask the klatsch in the Adirondack chairs “Where’s Whulge Beach?” and undoubtedly, one diehard Burtoner is going to look at you like you’re a tourist. Which this writer, in essence, was. Just south of the four-way stop sign, beyond the road’s curve was the very beach Scott Bonney was mentioning for sunny afternoon swims.
The Whulgers, a loosely knit, open water swim group that occasionally finds its way to the Beachcomber pages, found its way to this blog because Scott invited its blogger to swim with the minnows. She did. It’s pretty fun! One just can’t be afraid of current, jellies, or cold-ish water. Swim as little or as much as you like. It’s self-paced, mutually supportive, and those who fear commitment need not worry. Do what you like. Wetsuit, goggles, cap, earplugs or none of it…it’s all your choice.
Love swimming in open water and want to buddy up with the Whulgers?
Go to the GoogleGroup here to get on the ListServe.
I got a call from a friend who interfaced with Need Food Lady on her way to the ferry yesterday. Said friend encouraged the woman to go to check out the food bank, to which the reply was reportedly, ”I can’t eat that food.” Just after visiting Doc Weispfenning’s Tuesday, I spotted the same Need Food Lady purchasing food at Vashon Market, and again at a bus stop yesterday holding the Need Food sign. We’re baffled only because Vashon’s food bank has an incredible garden, plenty of fresh produce AND accommodates a great deal of special dietary needs. Huh. Last time I looked, the sign didn’t say, “Need (Lactose-Free Soy-Free Gluten-Free, Vegan, Organic, Non-Food-Bank) Food.” Just fascinated is all.
Vashon Pool recently let a lifeguard go after the employee did not follow proper protocol for handling a guest (in an effort to prevent another guest from being handled, or so the story goes).
I would like to raise another question: What happened to Dayna Rogers?
Did anyone notice that in late May Dayna was the poster child–even depicted on the Beachcomber’s front page– for being Vashon Pool’s manager, bringing in a template program, getting ops underway and then suddenly once things are running, she’s no longer needed? I bought a family pass for summer 2010 BECAUSE Dayna was running things, and I knew I’d get great lessons for the kids under her team, and be assured of a consistent, safe and respectful operation. When I inquired with Dayna about what gives, she couldn’t fully articulate it because she was still trying to figure it out, too. Today, she’s coaching, working at VAC and I’ve even chased her to the Vashon Country Club so my kids can enjoy her instruction.
I am sorry the lifeguard lost his job for not following protocol, and I understand how it feels (literally) to get brushed on by a stranger in a pool. Given the molestation incident that happened at that pool last year I’m guessing the lifeguard erred on the side of defense. All good intentions.
It’s a wonderful pool. I hope the staff members we grow to know and love can stick around.
By now, promoter Pete Welch should have found his way to your e-mail inbox concerning Saturday’s Vashon Throwdown, a daytime concert fundraiser benefiting Burton Adventure Recreation Center. Whether or not you can make it, the donation is a suggested $10 though all amounts are welcome. Needed is a sum of $4,000 to meet hard costs for improvements.
This young fellow, Zach, incoming 7th grader at McM, is donating his new Sector 9 youth skateboard to be live auctioned during the event. He rode it for two hours–it is essentially pristine and ready for some skater to shred it to toothpicks as the board rightly should be! The retail value is $150, and sitting in a child’s closet it does nothing but gather dust. So somebody out there spread the word there’s an awesome skateboard to be had in which ALL the funds will go to BARC. That’s love, people! Thank you, Zachy (from mama).
That’s when you REALLY feel like the world is shrinking. Lance Morgan. Mariners v. Angels. Diamond Club. Yesterday (June 6). Fun!
I’m intrigued. I’ll bite. But I’m not about to get preachy. Having lived in cities with massive homeless and hungry populations (San Diego, San Fransicso, and Honolulu), I’ve passed many a cardboard sign in my day unfazed. But on Vashon? Fazed. And two on the same day? Conspiracy theorist fazed!
Your new Point Robinson lighthouse keeper, Eric Wyatt, is also known as the Vashon Dreamboats calendar guy, father of two adorable kids, that tall dude on the P.O. boat, avid cyclist, yoga disciple, the dry-witted Facebooker and a native Iowan. Let’s congratulate Mr. Wyatt on his recent appointment. It couldn’t happen to a nicer guy.
No, I mean literally “buzz.” The next couple weeks are the testy ones for crowded, productive, ready-to-run bees bursting with new queens. This can be an outcropping of just really, really prolific bees or not checking the hive frequently in spring, or a combination of both. I’m just repeating what the beekeepers say, and have had the luxury of seeing it on video in my own backyard last year. You can too, right here. So…history repeats itself in some ways, but with people to help you (and answer the call), the swarm of bees can still be housed.
This weekend on the Vashon Beekeepers list serve, a call for assistance went out by Wax Orchard residents Amy Greenberg and Chris Robison. Their bees swarmed and were hovering about 15 feet up in a fir tree just yards from their garden. David (Skrzypek, a carpenter at SDS and hobbyist beekeeper–and my husband!) was excited to take on the challenge–a careful rigging of ladders, buckets, bee suit and all–to house the honey bees and help Amy establish a second hive on her property (whose garden plot is also serving as the Vashon Community Food Bank’s garden–a whole other wonderful post waiting for another time!). After rallying this-n-that for a second hive (stacking supers to make a decent bee box, frames, etc), the mission was successful. Afterward, Chris and Amy warmly fed us a homemade Navy bean soup, farmstead style, on their lovely back porch. Suddenly, new friends come from David reaching out to strangers. Let that pseudo Seattle Nice be damned! This is the wonder of Vashon.
Your blogger suited up and took pictures, and silently fought off a panic attack as the bees swirled all around us.
Mardi sent out this email to Islanders last night.
I got it this morning and nearly sprayed my morning coffee all over my monitor in shock. This little island? Police getting rough? On sweet Jess? Seriously?!
Here’s Mardi’s email, verbatim:
Yes, I am writing to you in a call for help! Friday night, of our much loved First Friday gallery walk, turned out to be a much larger scene than us Islanders would like to experience in our quiet comfortable community of neighbors. Some of you might have already heard of the citizen vs. police brawl up town Vashon on Friday night as people were strolling around checking out this months offerings. As far as I’ve heard the situation was blown to extreme proportions by a few overly ambitious officers that decided that talking problems out wasn’t going to be an option for them that night. Instead, a few fairly violent occurrences happened which include taking down one of our favorite peeps Chef Jessica Dewire from The Gusto Girls. Jess and two other co-softball players were walking across the main highway in the center of town from their team sponsor after having after game burgers and ended up being in the wrong place at the wrong time.
They were told to stop and they did, but for some reason Jessica was thrown to the ground face down, punched, and then had mace sprayed in her face. As Jess tried to protect herself from the macing she scratched one of the officers in the face and was then arrested for assault and hauled off to jail, where she will sit until Monday at 2:30 for her arraignment. From other reports she was not the only person that experienced unusual force.
There are other factors that as a community we should be very concerned about. One is that the police brutality that we so often see on the news these days has crept onto our peaceful little home. The mob of bystanders that witnessed the events leading up to and then after Jessica’s arrest that I have spoken to are quite adamant that the police on duty did not act in a non violent manner from the beginning. The general concenses is that the whole sequence of events that evening were a prime example of police brutality. Keep in mind that Jessica is NOT the only person nor was she the first person that the law had altercations with during gallery walk.
I myself will be in that court room tomorrow to show my support for Jessica, as well as any others that are there with her from the same event. It is crutial that our police are held accountable for their bad behavior also. The recent string of police killings is upsetting, but not a good reason to come to Vashon and treat our community like we’ve had a police hating history. If you would like me to take a letter of support with me tomorrow please email me before 10:30am. Even better would be your support in the court room.
Thanks for taking the time to read this email. I just couldn’t sit and do nothing this time. It’s just not fair. Unfortunely, this whole bad deal will probably end the ability for anyone other than liquor liscense holding establishments from being able to serve wine during art walk, as I’m sure the authorities will blame our behavior on that. We need to be present to stand up for our rights, we do have them.
and Sound Food
Following that was an email from Pamn Aspiri, warning that statements from eye witnesses are key. I, of course, am not an eyewitness, but here’s her thoughtful note:
I love Jessica.
The police were out of line.
People who are calm and WITNESSED the event should go to court or write letters explaining exactly what they saw.
People who are only going on “hearsay” (Vashon Rumor Mill) would probably be ignored or might actually hurt the case.
I was present the night this all went down, and though I did not witness it first-hand, I am fairly clear on what actually happened from talking to the two main witnesses at the scene and speaking to Officer Kurt Lyson as well. As Jess’s softball manager and friend I was concerned and wanted to help her. The accounting below is not quite correct. It leaves out some crucial information and adds some untruths. Ever play the game “telephone” when you were a kid?
This I do know:
- We all love Jessica.
- We all want to help her.
- We want to address police conduct on Vashon.
- We need to do it in a calm and informed manner so we are taken seriously.
- We have gathered contact information from eye-witnesses at the scene to help support Jessica’s case.
- We made sure that statements were taken that night by officer Lyson from eye-witnesses, not by the overtown officers.
- We can show support for her but I caution people to keep the story to themselves unless they actually saw what happened.
- Inflammatory or inaccurate information won’t help Jess and could possibly make things worse.
- Thirty years here has taught me to be very cautious about “news” on Vashon Island. We all love Jessica, and we want to help.
Think about how you can best help her.
Thanks for taking the time to read this if you did.
This weekend, you’ll want to catch the coop tour if you’re planning on keeping backyard chickens, or just want to amuse mom on Mother’s Day Weekend. Saturday and Sunday, this benefit for Interfaith Council on Homelessness will feature five coops. Here’s a video tour of one of them..that my husband David and son, Zach, built over the course of an early, wet spring.