Monthly Archives: April 2013

Island Road History | Gideon Lane

Street of the Week: Gideon Lane

Location: Runs east/west off Grow Avenue, just north of Wyatt Way

History: The Gideons come from pioneering stock. Hailing from Germany, the first offshoots of the family to push west landed in Minnesota before packing up again and heading for the Pacific.

Charlie was the first to land on the West Coast but was soon followed by his younger brother Josiah. The family relocated to Seattle in 1902 and eventually made a home on Bainbridge Island where Josiah worked at the shipyard until his death in 1920. His wife Margaret continued to live on Bainbridge; she was instrumental in the first island library, school and newspaper.

Josiah and Margaret’s son Kenneth also called Bainbridge home and constructed the cabin that still stands on the edge of Gideon Park.

This occasional Islander series explores the history of island street names, as compiled by Elinor Ringland and fellow Bainbridge Island Historical Society volunteers.  If you have an island road story to share, email Ringland at

Bainbridge Islander preview


Here’s the Bainbridge Islander preview for April 26. Feel free to give your events a plug in the comment section below.


CLIMBING TO VICTORY | Arborists descend on Bainbridge for an unusual competition.

PLEASANT BEACH PHASE 2 | A swimming pool and gym are just a couple new additions planned for fast-changing Lynwood Center.

CONCERN FOR FLETCHER BAY | Increasing levels of bacteria put Fletcher Bay on the “threatened” list for shellfish growing.

BIG PLANS FOR ROTARY PARK | Ballfields will get long-awaited renovations over the next two years.

COMING UP | Students become citizen scientists in watershed project.

Island View:

A look at The Waypoint and the Bainbridge Island Museum of Art site. Click and drag the image to scroll around.
Continue reading

Dates set for public meetings on Bainbridge school configuration


As we reported last week, the Bainbridge Island School District is studying the possibility of closing a school building, in the face of declining budgets and enrollment.

A School Configuration Committee began meeting last fall and has identified three options for grade and school configurations. One option would maintain the status quo. Two options would relocate Ordway Elementary students and staff, move Commodore Options School to the Ordway building, and close the Commodore campus. No changes would be made until the 2014-15 school year, at the earliest.

Community outreach is the next step in the process and the district announced firm dates for a series of public meetings this week:

  • May 7: 7 p.m., Commodore Options School commons, 9530 NE High School Road.
  • May 14: 7 p.m., Wilkes Elementary School commons, 12781 Madison Avenue NE.
  • May 16: 7 p.m., Bainbridge High School commons, 9330 NE High School Road.

A presentation will be given at each meeting and public comment will be taken. Materials from the Configuration Committee meetings can be found here.

(The first meeting date has been corrected from an earlier version).

More views of the next phase of Pleasant Beach Village

Apartments, a gym and a community swimming pool are all part of the proposed second phase of Pleasant Beach Village at Lynwood Center. A public meeting was held for neighbors of the project on Monday night.

You can see more designs for the second phase below, courtesy Wenzlau Architects:

Pre-App Presentation(Kitsap Sun)_low Res by tsooter

Islanders’ “Living on One Dollar” documentary is free on Hulu

Four young filmmakers traveled to Guatemala in 2010 to experience life on less than $1 a day. The harrowing experiment resulted in “Living on One Dollar,” a documentary that premiered last fall.

Since then, the creators of Living on One – three of whom grew up on Bainbridge Island — have been busy turning the film into a social movement. They’ve screened the documentary at universities and festivals around the country in recent months. They’ve also organized events to raise awareness of global poverty and promote microfinance.

The film can be viewed free on Hulu through May 3.


Bainbridge Islander preview

islander.4.19We’re revamping our Friday blog post to feature more Islander content. Here is the Bainbridge Islander preview for April 19.


Shooting for the stars | The Bainbridge High School Rocket Team celebrates a successful first season.

Locals respond to the Boston tragedy | Bainbridge Island runners witnessed the destruction of the Boston Marathon bombings first-hand. See an islander’s photos here.

School closure grows more likely | Two of the three proposed options from the School Configuration Committee would result in closing a school.

Sailors excel in Dyes Inlet | Photos from the Silverdale Regatta capture the excitement of sailing without the windburn.

Coming Up: The park district prepares for an overhaul of its flagship baseball fields. Find more Bainbridge news on the Bainbridge Islander page.

Island View:

A sunny view of Eagle Harbor from Pritchard Park on Tuesday. Click and drag the image to scroll around. Continue reading

Island runner shares photos from Boston

Flowers line a barricade on Boylston Street in Boston Tuesday, near the site of the Boston Marathon bombing. (Photo courtesy Luis Borges)

Bainbridge Island runner Luis Borges was competing in his fourth Boston Marathon when tragedy struck Monday.

He had finished the race and was walking back to his hotel when he heard the two explosions near the finish line. He described the aftermath to the Sun’s Steven Gardner Tuesday.

“It’s still a town in shock and it’s still a town trying to figure things out,” Borges said from his hotel room, a few blocks from the scene.

Borges was one of about 20 Kitsap-area runners registered for the race. He said he is determined to run a fifth Boston Marathon.

“I want to be here next year,” he said.

Borges shared some of his photos from the event. They show the lead up to the race and eerie street scenes following the bombing.

This is me at the finish line right next to the site where the first bomb went off. The bomb was placed on the left side of the street. This picture was taken on Saturday, two days before the marathon:

blog.boston2 Continue reading

Lester won’t seek reelection to City Council

20091103-222517-pic-898493243_t120Bainbridge City Councilwoman Debbi Lester will not seek reelection, the Central Ward representative announced Wednesday.

Lester’s announcement leaves three positions on the council up for grabs this year. Kirsten Hytopoulos and Bob Scales also have terms expiring at the end of the year and have said they will not seek reelection. Candidate filing week is May 13-17.

Lester joined the council in 2010. She served as mayor last year.

In an email Wednesday, Lester said she decided to step aside to encourage new voices on the council. She said the city has reached “an incredible moment,” with the hiring of Manager Doug Schulze, new police chief Matthew Hamner, and a number of projects and policy revisions coming to fruition.

You can read Lester’s full letter below: Continue reading

Island Road History | Kono Lane

Street of the Week: Kono Lane

Location: Runs east/west off Tani Creek Road near Blakely Harbor

History: When a representative of the Japanese Consulate arrived in Port Blakely to oversee the local mill and its large base of Japanese workers, he was shocked at what he found.

Crammed together in bunkhouses, working 10-hour days with minimum pay and then gambling the night away, most of the employees were not, the consulate reported, “honest workers.”

It was up to mill boss Hanjiro Kono to set things straight. Kono stopped the rampant gambling and freeloading. By the time he was done, many workers had left to be replaced by Japanese farmers and their families. To encourage the new arrivals to put down roots, the mill set aside land for the families to live on rent-free in homes built from donated lumber.

By 1903, the area had hundreds of residents, as well as bathhouses, barbershops, churches, a restaurant and even a hotel owned by none other than mill boss Hanjiro Kono.

This occasional Islander series explores the history of island street names, as compiled by Elinor Ringland and fellow Bainbridge Island Historical Society volunteers.  If you have an island road story to share, email Ringland at

Bainbridge student wins NASA essay contest

Michaela-Leung_150Apparently Bainbridge middle school students really know how to write essays.

Last week Woodward Middle School student Julia Batson won the state Letters About Literature contest and moved on to the national competition. This week the school district received word that Odyssey seventh grader Michaela Leung is a champion of the NASA Titan & Europa Essay contest.

The contest challenged students choose the goal for the next NASA outer solar system mission. Students could pick between Saturn’s moon, Titan, or Jupiter’s moon, Europa as the target for the mission. They were asked to defend their choice based on its scientific value.

The winning essays will be posted shortly. Winning classes will be invited to take part in a teleconference with NASA scientists. Judges complemented Leung “articulate prose and sound scientific zeal” in their announcement of the award.

Leung won the Cassini Scientist for a Day Essay Contest in 2012. You can read that essay here.

(This version corrects an earlier post with amended information from the school district.)


Police Blotter: Trespasser searching for “soul mate” terrifies island family


A Komedal Road resident called 911 at 3 a.m. April 9 to report an unknown person was outside his house, prying at locked doors and windows. Police searched the area and found 35-year-old Lakewood man walking nearby. The man said he tried to break into the house because his “heart” told him his “soul mate” lived there. He also admitted to using methamphetamine.

Also this week, a window was shattered at an oft-vandalized bus stop, and a texting driver rolled her car over on Torvanger Road.

The blotter is below: Continue reading

Island Road History | Falk Road

Street of the Week: Falk Road

Location: Runs north/south between Manitou Beach Road and Valley Road

History: Imagine traveling across the country with a seven-month-old. That’s just what Dona Falk and his wife did in 1876. The young family settled on a 155-acre claim in the Rolling Bay area along Murden Cove.

The Falk family were the first white settlers to call the Manitou Beach area home.

Like many early pioneers on Bainbridge Island, the Falks made their living as farmers. Come harvest, Dona would carry his produce into town using a neck yoke.

When Dona died he left each of his eight children a parcel of the family’s land: eight acres for each of the five boys and five acres for each of the three girls. Some Falks still live on that same land today.

This occasional Islander series explores the history of island street names, as compiled by Elinor Ringland and fellow Bainbridge Island Historical Society volunteers.  If you have an island road story to share, email Ringland at