Although 19-year-old Chiara D’Angelo’s recent Bainbridge Island
tree-sit protest of the Visconsi Cos. 62,000-square-foot shopping
complex didn’t prevent the clearing of 830 trees off state Route
305 and High School Road, her efforts have inspired a song and
music video that was posted to YouTube Monday.
Leif Utne’s original “Girl in a Tree” song and video features
D’Angelo and other Bainbridge residents of all ages dancing and
holding up handwritten pro-environment signs in various locations
around the island. Honey Toad Studio, located on Bainbridge, helped
Utne with the video’s production.
As of 11:55 p.m. Wednesday, the video had received 1,728 views
with 33 “likes” and two “dislikes.”
News of the video was starting to gain attention nationally. On
Wednesday, Mother Earth News posted a story about it on its
Facebook page and Kim Murphy, the Los Angeles Times’ assistant
managing editor for foreign and national news, tweeted about
D’Angelo, a 2013 Bainbridge High graduate and a sophomore at
Western Washington University, stayed approximately 41 hours on a
wooden platform 70 feet up roped to an evergreen tree Aug. 18-19.
She avoided being arrested for trespassing on Visconsi private
property by making a deal before she came down from her perch,
Bainbridge Island Police Deputy Police Chief Jeff Horn said.
Many islanders fought for more than a year against the
8.16-acre Visconsi shopping complex, which the Bainbridge Planning
Commission unanimously rejected in November. It wasn’t
until the island’s Hearing Examiner approved the
project in March with 50 State Environmental Policy Act conditions
that the shopping complex could move forward.
Five days before D’Angelo’s tree-sit protest began, a grade and
fill permit with clearing was authorized by the city of Bainbridge
for the property, which was zoned for commercial use.
Appreciative of the two King Center banners they received to
share at events to honor the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and
Black History Month, Bainbridge residents greeted a woman who works
at the Atlanta national historic site and her son recently when
they visited the Puget Sound area.
Juanita Robinson, the gift shop manager at The King Center, came
to the area because her 25-year-old son Thomas was participating in
the U.S. Track & Field Club Nationals in Tacoma July 11-12.
Thomas competed for the Atlanta Track Club and finished eighth in
the 100-meter dash with a finals time of 11.43 seconds.
The 8-foot-tall King Center banners were also shared at the Navy
Undersea Engineering Museum at Keyport, Kitsap County Fairground
President’s Hall, Olympic College in Bremerton and the Washington
state African-American awards program at Bremerton High. On
Bainbridge Island, the banners were displayed at Bethany Lutheran
Church, Ordway Elementary School and at the Filipino-American
Community Hall for the 15th annual community celebration Kitsap
Sing Out! in January.
The Robinsons visited Chief Seattle’s gravesite, St. Peters
Mission Church, Ol’ Man House Park in Suquamish, as well as the
Suquamish Veterans Memorial, Suquamish Museum and House of the
Awakened Culture. They also toured the Bainbridge Island Japanese
American Exclusion Memorial.
The Suquamish Tribe at the Clearwater Resort co-hosted the
visitors. Upon the Robinsons return to Georgia, they were given
books and publications for The King Center Library by the Suquamish
Museum, Bainbridge Island Historical Museum, Kitsap Black History
Museum, Bainbridge Island Japanese-American community,
Bainbridge Island School District, Experience Music Project Museum
and Sing Out Kitsap!
Robinson said she was “overjoyed and ever so grateful” to visit
the Bainbridge and Suquamish communities.
Island nonprofit groups fared
very well in the inaugural Kitsap Great Give on Tuesday, May
The event, organized by the
Kitsap Community Foundation, set a goal of raising $500,000 for
nonprofit organizations and activities throughout Kitsap County
through a 24-hour donation drive. Donations were accepted through
where a leaderboard kept a running tally of donations through the
The total donated in the Kitsap
Great Give was $539,199.95. At least 22 island-specific
organizations were helped, including several near the top of the
countywide list in terms of donors and amounts raised. The
Bainbridge Schools Foundation raised more than any other nonprofit,
The Bainbridge Schools
Foundation, with 82 individual donors, led all island organizations
in that category, followed by Maasai Women’s Education and
Empowerment Program (41), Island Time Activities (52), Island
Volunteer Caregivers (40) and Bainbridge Public Library
The amount raised for Island Time
Activities ($19,180) was also among the highest in the county.
Others at the top in terms of donations were Bainbridge Island
Museum of Art ($17,310), Bainbridge Island Arts and Humanities
Council ($7,325) and Bainbridge Performing Arts
Bainbridge’s long awaited radio station has arrived – at least
in the form of podcasts.
Bainbridge Community Broadcasting is now offering six podcast
radio shows titled “What’s Up Bainbridge.” The 5-minute podcast
previews of an upcoming local event “described in person by the
organizer, artist or presenter closest to the event,” according to
an email from BCB announcing the podcasts.
With July fast approaching, the Bainbridge Island Arts &
Humanities Council is putting a call out for musicians interested
in performing during its 26th annual Bainbridge in Bloom
garden tour July 11-12.
Folk, jazz groups and classical chamber artists are sought by
the Arts & Humanities Council to play hourlong sets from 9 a.m.
to 5 p.m. on the Friday and Saturday of the event. Musicians
can also perform longer than an hour and more frequently if they’d
Interested artists can contact, Bainbridge in Bloom music
coordinator Karla Zimmerman at email@example.com
or (206) 979-9981.
Tom Vargas said giving a proper closure to a subdivision that
served as government housing was one of the best things about
participating last Thursday in the decommissioning of a Bainbridge
street formerly known as Government Way from 1957 to 2007.
Tom, and his wife Karen, lived on the street for 10 years
starting in 1992. Tom donated an American flag that was used on the
USS Alabama submarine at Bangor. The flag was used during
Thursday’s ceremony to conclude the event.
Karen, along with Kathryn Keve and others, worked hard to
collect the names of former residents, other stories and historical
facts that were tied to the 16-house street. Karen retired from the
Tom served on the USS Alabama with frequent Government Way
visitor Brian Moss, who died in the Sept. 11, 2001, terroristic
attacks while working at the Pentagon. The two friends enjoyed
“It’s pretty cool,” Tom said after the decommissioning ceremony.
“A lot of stuff gets closed and not a big deal is made and you come
back a year later and it’s gone. This gives me closure because this
was the majority of where I lived during my (military) career.”
Bainbridge Mayor Anne Blair said the ceremony was “nicely done
all the way around.”
“Home is where our stories begin and this was a day of stories
and it will continue to be,” Blair said.
Ross Smaaladen, a construction worker with PHC, thought the
ceremony was “awesome” and appreciated learning some of the
interesting history of the homes and residents. PHC employees are
dismantling the 16 rambler style homes on the street to make way
for the new 5-acre second phase of the Grow Community. The new
development literally will be situated on what is now John Adams
Lane and will feature 3 acres of open space that will be mixed with
fields, orchards and light forest groves.
“We’re helping to build the next stage of history for the
community and it’s great to be a part of it,” said Seppi Gorecki,
another PHC construction worker.
Six of Bremerton High School’s Navy Junior ROTC members also
participated in the decommissioning and conducted the flag-folding
ceremony. Michael Shiflet was the cadet that presented the flag to
American Legion Post 172 Commander Fred Scheffler at the event’s
U.S. Army recruiter Sgt. Clarence Jennings drove from Silverdale
to also attend the ceremony.
“I’m honored they asked us to do this and that’s what we do –
leadership in the community,” said Sr. Chief Anthony Jones of
Bremerton High’s Navy JROTC.
Greg Lotakis, project manager for Asani Developments on the Grow
Community project, said he was appreciative of everyone who made
the street’s decommissioning event possible.
“Karen and Kathryn are amazing,” Lotakis said. “Community
organizers never get enough credit and they said, ‘This is what we
want to do.’ And we said, ‘Absolutely,’ and they got it done. It’s
a nice close to it.”
Lotakis said trails and a community center will be included in
the new Grow development, which will also acknowledge the history
of street and its residents with signs.
I’ve reached out to FAA and King
County International Airport officials to get a more
complete picture of air traffic in the area, and I’ll post whatever
information they provide. In the meantime, I’ll share some of
the additional reader input and flight track graphics we’ve
Comments posted in response to the story online were mostly of
the “those islanders always find something to complain about”
variety, but I also heard from a number of Bainbridge and North
Kitsap residents who had concerns and observations regarding
airplane noise. Here’s a sampling:
“In the twelve years we have lived here, this past summer is
the first time we have been bothered by the noise. As I noted, this
year the frequency of the flights has increased greatly and the
planes are flying at lower altitudes than in previous years.” –
Kathy, south Kingston
“My concern is these flights are too low for one
thing. At night the strobe lights up my back yard on approach
as I’m on a hill and I know the plane is closer than 2,000 ft at my
house off Eagle Harbour. I believe our senator and US
Congress reps should be involved but it’s King County Airport where
the flights are coming in over my area.” – Jim, Bainbridge
IslandContinue reading →
Bainbridge hopes to bring a community FM radio station to the
island. The nonprofit group plans to submit an application for a
low-power broadcasting license in October.
Tonight, Sustainable Bainbridge is gathering ideas on how a
radio station could serve the island and what types of programs
islanders would like to hear. A meeting is scheduled for
7-8:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Waterfront Park Community
The Blakely Rock yoga sculpture finally lost its balance.
Artist Ethan Currier sent us a photo (right) of the fallen
remains his 1,600-pound rock creation Monday morning. The
12-foot-tall, unauthorized public art piece had stood on the
reef outside Eagle Harbor since late December.
It’s unclear when or why the sculpture fell. Currier hinted at
possible vandalism in his email. He said he was confident the
sculpture wouldn’t have fallen on its own, and noted the weather
has been calm lately.
“I’m glad nobody was hurt,” he added.
Currier said he planned to clean up the rubble as soon as
“The Dream” was published by Harper Collins in 2003 coincide
40th anniversary of the March on Washington. Hansen became a
popular guest speaker after the book’s release, giving numerous
talks on King and the speech over the last decade. As the
50-year anniversary of the march approaches, he is once again
sharing his insights.
USA Today story published earlier this month, Hansen noted the
“Dream” speech slid toward obscurity in the years after it was
delivered. The speech returned to prominence only after King’s
death in 1968, and became – “one of those things we look to when we
want to know what America means,” Hansen told the paper. Continue reading →
There are still a number of Bethany
Lutheran members who attended the old church (Bethany relocated to
Finch Road in 1961). Some were baptized there, confirmed there, and
even married there. Today the church is a private residence.
Shirley Jenkins (formerly Ostrand) recalls when her extended
family filled several pews at the Pleasant Beach church. In the
early days the Ostrands drove a horse cart south from their
Manzanita homestead to attend services.
Though the exterior of the building remains largely unaltered
(see the photos above), the interior has been remodeled by a
succession of owners. Jenkins offered to share a few pictures of
how the church house looked inside when it was still a church: