Monthly Archives: March 2010

Two arrests in three days for Bainbridge man

A 23-year-old Bainbridge Island man who was arrested Sunday on suspicion of burglarizing a neighbor’s house didn’t stay out of jail very long.

Bainbridge police say they arrested the man again Tuesday morning for allegedly breaking into his parents’ house on Windsong Loop. The break-in was reported by the neighbors whose house he allegedly broke into Sunday.

The man’s parents confirmed to police that he is not welcome in their home. Police say they found him in his parents’ house “consuming prescription drugs.”

He had been booked Sunday on felony charges of burglary and possession stolen property. Police say he made a court appearance on those charges at 3 p.m. Monday, then was arrested again at 9:30 Tuesday morning.

Ratepayers alliance refiles lawsuit against city

Here’s my story on the latest in the Bainbridge Ratepayers Alliance v. City of Bainbridge Island saga:

BAINBRIDGE ISLAND — The Bainbridge Ratepayers Alliance has sent a reminder to the city that their legal fight isn’t over.

Late last week, the alliance re-filed the lawsuit it initially brought against the city in April 2009.

The lawsuit reasserts the alliance’s claim that the city misappropriated utility funds, alliance member Dick Allen said.

The lawsuit’s key assertion — that the city cannot pursue bond funding to upgrade the Winslow sewer plant — was thrown out by a Kitsap County judge in September.

The alliance appealed, but later agreed to put aside certain objections that were preventing the city from obtaining the bond. The agreement also halted a planned sewer rate surcharge aimed at covering the blocked funding.

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A new family center opens on Bainbridge

A father and son play at the new Peacock Family Center. Photo: Tristan Baurick

The Peacock Family Center has grown a lot in 11 months.

Formerly housed in a 900-square-foot room in Rolling Bay, Peacock now takes up a 4,100-square-foot building in downtown Winslow. It also offers more than an indoor play place. Preschool, day care, kids classes and family counseling are either offered or will be offered by June.

The building, which formerly housed KiDiMu (and an auto service center), has been renovated to include new classrooms and several water- and energy-saving features. Much of the work was done by volunteers or through discounted labor.

For more, read my story about Peacock’s reopening here.

Tales of old ‘Ichville’

I wrote a story back in 2004 about how work was starting on a book that would tell the largely unknown story of Bainbridge’s Croatian fishing community.

The book didn’t quite happen according to plan. It took an a few extra years and went through one author change before it would arrive on shelves this month.

Apparently, “Let it Go, Louie” has been well received by the people it aims to document.

“Let it Go, Louie” co-author Barbara Winther told me that Art Mirkovich, whose father came to Bainbridge from Croatia in the early 1920s, had been anxiously awaiting the book for over five years. Hearing that he had fallen ill, Barbara sent a draft that recounted the Mirkovich family’s history. Art’s daughter read it to him in the hospital. A few weeks later, he died.

“His wife said that he had been holding on until the book came,” Barbara said. “That touched me very much.”

Tonight at Eagle Harbor Books, Barbara and co-author Gary Loverich will read from the book and show some of the hundreds of old photos (like the one to the left) they’ve collected.

Check out my full story here.

C.H.U.D.s among us?

The exploits of a certain shirtless, slightly wounded, knife-throwing, sword-waving hunter of werewolves and ‘chuds’ has sparked a lot of questions.

But the chief among them (at least for me) is ‘what’s a chud?’

A quick Google search directed me to a Wikipedia page describing a subset of Baltic Slavs dwelling in the southern parts of Finland and coastal Estonia.

In the year 1030, Prince Yaroslav the Wise of Kiev defeated the Chuds and began demanding (and receiving) regular tributes from them. Not much more is noted about the Chuds, except that they were regularly the victims of raids from their eastern, Russian-speaking neighbors.

Chuds were no doubt a hearty people, but not exactly on par with werewolves.

I enlisted my ‘Tweeps’ to help me learn of a more likely match for our blade-bedecked hunter.

“He was also hunting ‘chuds,'” I said via Twitter. “What is a ‘chud’? Anybody?”

All responses pointed to the truly terrifying Cannibalistic Humanoid Underground Dweller (or C.H.U.D. for short).

They have glowing eyes, sharp little piranha teeth and slimy, gnarled skin. They were created when toxic waste came into contact with homeless people. And they’re “not staying underground anymore,” as the tag-line for a motion picture about C.H.U.D.s states.

If you dare, click on the above movie trailer. Parental guidance is recommended.

So, with chuds, or C.H.U.D.s, now identified, another question arises: how did C.H.U.D.s come to roam Bainbridge Island?

Leave it to a well-informed, Twitter-ready City Hall-watcher to posit the likeliest possibility:

“I guess the Winslow sewer leak did some long-term damage after all.”

Police detain sword-waving, knife-throwing ‘werewolf’ hunter

A scraped-up, shirtless man armed with a sword and several throwing knives was detained by police today.

The man had been seen waving the sword near the ProBuild hardware store off High School Road just before 1:45 p.m. Witnesses said he had also been visiting the nearby Ace hardware store.

The man told police he was hunting werewolves and “chuds.”

He surrendered to police without incident and was transported to Harrison Hospital in Bremerton for an evaluation.

The full police press release is below.

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Wyckoff cleanup discussion on Wednesday

Discussions about possible cleanup actions at the contaminated Wyckoff wood treatment site on will continue Wednesday with an open house at 5:30 p.m. followed by a 6:30 p.m. presentation by officials with the state Department of Ecology.

The meeting will be at IslandWood, 4450 Blakely Ave NE.

Ecology officials are working with a task force to develop an alternative to a containment option proposed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, which plans to turn the site over to Ecology.

Ecology officials say they don’t like the idea of leaving massive amounts of creosote compounds in the ground for many years to come.

For information, visit Ecology’s website about the Wyckoff “generational remedy” at Notes taken during Wednesday’s meeting will be posted on the project’s Twitter site.

Kitsap’s pro soccer team playing a pre-season game on BI

The Kitsap Pumas are playing a pre-season game against Gonzaga University at Bainbridge High School next month.

The April 10 game kicks off at 1 p.m. Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for kids.

“We’re looking very much forward to playing a match on Bainbridge,” said assistant coach James Ritchie, who also spent over a year coaching youth on the island. “There are some wonderful kids and families there and we all hope they come out and support the Pumas.”

The Pumas’ pre-season schedule begins April 3 with a match against the United Soccer League’s Portland Timbers. Kickoff is at 6 p.m. at Bremerton Memorial Stadium. The Timbers recently defeated the Seattle Sounders 1-nil at Qwest Field.

For more information, visit the Puma’s website, or call Ben Pecora at (360) 377-6008.

Bainbridge group needs an office worker…in Nicaragua

The Bainbridge-Ometepe Sister Island Association is looking for an adventurous islander to help run its on-the-ground operation in Nicaragua.

BOSIA has several programs that support education and health care on Ometepe, a coffee-growing island in Lake Nicaragua.

Titled “office volunteer,” the position includes airfare, housing and a small stipend. Work starts in July. Conversational Spanish is a plus.

Here’s more information from BOSIA President Jeanne Huber:

The Bainbridge-Ometepe Sister Islands Association is accepting applications for a paid staff position on Ometepe island in Nicaragua for one year beginning in July.

The organization, which will celebrate its 25th anniversary next year, operates entirely with volunteers on Bainbridge. But it has three paid staff members on Ometepe, an island of two volcanoes in the middle of Lake Nicaragua. The office manager, Dora Gutierrez Traña, is an English teacher who works for the sister islands association part time. Another Ometepe native, Maria Estela Alvarez, is the scholarship coordinator. The third position, called “office volunteer,” is reserved for someone with a connection to Bainbridge Island.

The association provides airfare, housing and a modest stipend. Applicants need to have decent Spanish, be at least 21 years old, and be able to commit to working on Ometepe for one year. Many office volunteers have been recent college graduates interested in careers in international development, food policy, or other fields that benefit from having a deeper understanding of another culture. There have also been office volunteers well along in their careers who decided to take a break and do something completely different for a year.

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Jay Inslee for governor?

There’s been plenty of speculation that Bainbridge’s own Jay Inslee is going to run for governor in 2012.

He’s run before. And he said he’s “interested” last June.

Well, now his former campaign manager has registered two websites that give another strong indication Inslee is serious about leading the state.

As reported by the State Column, Chris McCullough, who worked for four years as Inslee’s campaign mangager and is now a Seattle-area political strategist, registered and earlier this month.

Here’s what the State Column had to say about the websites:

“While speculation on a run by the Congressman is nothing new, this is the first sign that Inslee is seriously considering a run for governor. While the state’s current governor, Christine Gregoire, floated the notion of a third term, support for the governor has since waned. Amongst the state party, Congressman Inslee — with his fundraising connections and strong political base—is seen to have the best shot at winning both the primary and general election in 2012.”