Tag Archives: PenMet Parks

Volunteerism Leads to Maritime Gig Fest Microphone

In a town the size of Gig Harbor, it helps if your head can fit a lot of hats. This weekend, I’ll be donning a new one — as a result of wearing one of my old ones.

Through my years of hosting a radio show on KGHP, I’ll be taking one of three microphone stations along Harborview Drive to help announce the parade entries in the annual Maritime Gig Festival in this year’s “Yo Ho Harbor!” parade on Saturday.

Some may say it’s not necessarily a good idea to hand me a microphone amid the throngs that will be lining both sides of the street — but then again, the good folks at KGHP let me in to the broadcast booth back in 2005 and I haven’t yet brought the full weight of the FCC down on the small, but rugged radio station — despite being on the air nearly every week since.

I’m looking forward to the parade and giving shout outs to the many local and regional parade entrants as they go by. I’m sure I’ll see plenty of familiar faces both in the parade and watching. And I look forward to making some new acquaintances along the way. There are more than 100 parade entries so that means no yelling at the kids on Friday night — gotta keep the pipes rested.

For me, this is one of the perks of living in a small community. I certainly wouldn’t have the same opportunity with the Seafair parade in Seattle, for example. But then again, the opportunities are there to be a part of the community, large or small.

From putting in some elbow grease at FISH food bank to keeping ivy from taking over the Wollochet estuary, anyone in the community is just a phone call away from lending a hand and helping to make the community a warm and inviting region.

The opportunity to announce the parade this weekend came about through volunteering at KGHP. You never know how one opportunity may open the door to another.

The city even makes it easy to volunteer, with the Gig Harbor Volunteer and Visitor Information Center, located at 3125 Judson St. Call them at (253) 857-4842 or go online at www.gigharborguide.com and click on the “Learn More” button and select “volunteer opportunities.”

I heartily encourage others who haven’t yet done so to step up — volunteer today in some way, big or small, for an ongoing project, one day or even for just one hour. Pitch in and see what kind of difference you can make in the community — and maybe opening that one door may lead to another and next year, you might be helping announce the parade at the Maritime Gig Festival.

Your head always has room for another new hat.

Don’t Forget Why Public Facilities Are Named After Certain People

Gig Harbor has a new place to play.

The city dedicated a new park on May 20, the Kenneth Leo Marvin Veterans Memorial Park, located behind behind the business park that’s just behind QFC on Point Fosdick Drive. It’s a beautiful facility that features baseball and soccer play areas, copious open grass space, playground equipment and the city plans to add interpretive trails in the near future.

There is ample parking and restroom facilities and the locale should well serve the majority of the population in the Harbor Heights region.

With the burgeoning of youth sports and leagues in soccer, baseball, softball, lacrosse and other field sports, the region is in desperate need of new playing space and even before this newest facility had even been officially dedicated, it was being put to good use by a number of local ball clubs.

The Peninsula Metropolitan Parks and Recreation District isn’t sitting back on its collective heels, either, as work is progessing nicely on the new park off Sehmel Drive. Known as the Sehmel Homestead Park, it will feature multiple baseball and soccer fields, horse and people trails and an outdoor amphitheater among its many amenities.

Work also is under way to develop a new set of baseball fields between the existing Gig Harbor Little League fields on Burnham Drive and the new Gig Harbor YMCA on Harbor Hill Drive.

All of these facilities will be put to good use and it’s nice to see the area responding to a long overdue and unmet need in the community: more open space for youth and families.

But let’s go back to the Kenneth Leo Marvin site for a moment. The site has been dedicated and named after a long-time Gig Harbor resident and decorated war veteran who deserves such an honor. A rich and community-minded dedication ceremony took place with the requisite dignitaries and ceremonial ribbon cutting, accompanied by speeches and music.

But like so many public facilities and structures, who will remember all this pomp and circumstance six months from now? A year from now? Five years down the road? Naming a park or building or bridge or stairwell or whatever after someone in the community is a grand gesture, one that no doubt brings a warm glow to those who love and remember that person. Problem is, people who visit the named edifice often have no clue as to who or why the particular public edifice was named.

All it would take, amid all the other fluff and glory that is a part of such a dedication, is a plaque that summates in two, three, maybe four sentences who the dignitary is who has earned the honor of having his or her name given to public use.

There are countless children and adults — many not yet born, who will spend many an hour at the Kenneth Leo Marvin Veterans Memorial Park. Let’s give them the advantage of knowing why we thought it important enough to attach his name to the public playfield.