Peninsular Thinking

A conversation about Bremerton, Port Orchard, Poulsbo, Silverdale, Bainbridge Island, Kingston, Manchester, Seabeck, Southworth, Suquamish, Belfair, Keyport, Olalla, Bangor, Hansville, Indianola, Port Gamble, Allyn, Port Ludlow, Gig Harbor and every once in a while something about the good folks who don't have the good fortune to live here.
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Posts Tagged ‘Kitsap County’

The Pink-a-Nator petitions to park at the courthouse

Monday, August 25th, 2014

Surely you’ve seen the Pink-a-Nator. It’s hard to miss the Pepto-Bismol pink utility truck with the slogan “Servin’ it up curb side.”
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The food truck dishing out specialty burgers, po’boys and other hearty comestibles has had a regular spot at the Annapolis Sunday Market and in a lot near the Fred Meyer shopping center (although not so much lately, since owner Michelle Roberts-Wash has been busy with catering).

Now, Roberts-Wash has her sights set on the Kitsap County Courthouse campus.

She attended last week’s Port Orchard City Council meeting to pitch her plan. The truck would occupy more than one space. The council’s public property committee has discussed the idea, said Councilman Jeff Cartwright, a committee member. The committee suggested a 90-day trial pending feedback from the county.

Meantime, the Kitsap County administrator expressed concerns about loss of parking spots that are already at a premium, according to Port Orchard City Clerk Brandy Rinearson.

Roberts-Wash had scoped out parking spaces on Austin Avenue between the county administration building and public works building. Councilman Rob Putaansuu noted that, at the previous meeting Aug. 12, a city resident had complained that she couldn’t find a place to drop off her ballot.

Other spaces Roberts-Wash had looked at were in front of the courthouse or the Sheriff’s Office.

Councilman Jerry Childs asked if this would set a precedent. What if others came along looking for space to sell their wares?

The public property committee talked about that, Cartwright said. In fact the Pink-a-Nator sparked a wide ranging discussion about food trucks, including Portland’s approach of designating whole blocks to meals on wheels. “Should the city have its own designated food truck zone?” the committee pondered.

“We talked very heavily about the parking versus the convenience of having a food service there,” Cartwright said. “We also talk about would that food service impact other businesses that also serve food.”

A hot dog vendor has a permit to sell in front of the administration building. Inside, Coffee Oasis has an espresso stand that sells food items.

Several council members commented — in the spirit of free enterprise — that competition with other businesses shouldn’t drive their decision.

Putaansuu also suggested the Pink-a-Nator might work in “underutilized” areas including Cline Avenue (the flat part not the mountain climb) and the gravel lot off Taylor Avenue.

Mayor Tim Matthes said South Kitsap County Commissioner Charlotte Garrido “would appreciate more notice and more information than she’s received so far.”

The council agreed to honor Garrido’s request, and Roberts-Wash said she’s fine with that.

So what do you think? If Port Orchard were to designate a food truck zone, where should it be?

And, if you’re a restaurant or cafe owner with a brick-and-mortar location, what are your thoughts on a food truck zone?


Following Seahawks win, the Bremerton boat was a bulgin’

Wednesday, September 25th, 2013

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Like many of you, I savored the Seattle Seahawks’ trouncing of the San Francisco 49ers a couple Sundays ago, a big win and a great start to a promising season that continued with a victory versus Jacksonville this week.

But as heavy rains had delayed the game versus San Francisco, I got a little worried, too.

With the delay, Bremertonians and other Kitsap County residents who took the ferry to the game had pretty much one option to get back here: the 10:30 p.m. ferry. (Not counting those of you who drove to the game via the Tacoma Narrows Bridge.)

Yes, there’s a later boat, but 12:50 a.m. is just too late to wait, especially on a school night. We’ve all been in this tight spot before. Fortunately, the game ended with enough time to get to the 10:30 p.m. boat. (And with ticket prices being what they are, I’d be there for every moment myself.)

But would the 10:30 p.m. boat hold everyone? We’re talking about a lot of fans here. I went to bed thinking good thoughts for those coming back to Bremerton, and sent a note off to Washington State Ferries asking about how many people climbed aboard the next morning. I also put a note on my facebook page.

To my surprise, those who responded said it wasn’t too bad. The Walla Walla was working the route, which helped because of its size. Everyone made it aboard, it seems.

A week later, I finally got those ridership stats. The ferries counted 1,057 passengers on the 10:30 p.m. sailing. Not even the Bainbridge Island boat at 10:40 p.m., which was that route’s most populated run of the day, reached that number (it totaled 907). Bremerton’s route carried 2,560 people altogether that Sunday (Sept. 15), meaning that one sailing had more than 40 percent of its ridership for the day.

The WSF’s Ray Deardorf said that even if the Walla Walla (capacity 2,000) hadn’t been working the route, the Kitsap — usually the smallest boat on the Bremerton run — could’ve accommodated the load, with a maximum capacity of 1,200.

Yet had the Kitsap made the journey, some 400 people wouldn’t have had a seat to sit on, he added. “An uncomfortable crossing,” he said of the possibility.

Yep, those of us in Bremerton have our gripes about the frequency of the ferry sailings. But it’s nice to know that that boat might be bulging, but there’s lots of room on our ferry vessels.

 


Kingston High School press box more iffy than the field

Friday, July 12th, 2013

The Kingston High School football field met with more conversation on Thursday, even as our earlier story broke, a story didn’t have the benefit of seeing before the meeting.

Our story suggested approval of the change in the field’s conditional use permit from the county is likely.

During Thursday’s North Kitsap School Board meeting Dave Dyess, the district’s director of maintenance and facilities, showed plans for a press box, plans that were prepared a year ago. The stick built facility would be about $8,000 more to build than the district had budgeted, but Dyess said a pole-built box would probably serve the needed purpose and could be done for less money.

Board members expressed caution about going forward, because they want to make sure the conditional use permit is approved before approving a press box. And they’re certain there will be an appeal.

Tom Anderson asked why there needed to be a press box. People stand in the rain at the game. Why build a press box so reporters can. … That’s where he stopped.

Reporters are the last people who make use of press boxes at high school football games. It’s called a press box, perhaps because that’s what they’re called at big stadiums, where the press really does do much of its work. At high school football games the press box is first for the announcer, then usually a couple of people operating the scoreboard. Coaches also use the higher space to get the bird’s-eye view and call plays.

Many reporters, though, prefer covering the game from the sidelines. The weather can change that, but many of the press boxes around Kitsap County are pretty crowded even without the news scribes. If the rain encourages a reporter inside, it’s primarily because it’s tough to take notes in the rain.

The board gave Dyess some permission to check out pole-built options, but not to submit a permit until the first permit is clear. That might take years.

Varsity football games will very likely be played at Kingston this year. The press box is less certain.


Facelift, name change coming to Bremerton (It’s not what you think.)

Thursday, June 14th, 2012

I am not making this up. Bremerton is changing its name.

I am not lying. I am only taking it out of context.

You saw the headline and thought, “What the what?” And then you’re thinking, “Hasn’t Bremerton already had enough of a facelift?” Well, downtown maybe.

For all the things you can complain about this city, its name probably isn’t one of them. It’s not like anyone is saying, “Oh, we’d all be part of the 1 percent if only our city weren’t named ‘Bremerton.’”

The story in the picture here comes from Austin, Minnesota, and the Bremerton in question is a townhome complex there that’s getting its name changed to ‘Meadows West.’ Seriously? That’s an improvement? No. Either it’s an insult or a recognition that a townhome complex doesn’t deserve to carry Bremerton’s name.

It got me to thinking, though, what if Bremerton really did change its name? What would be some good candidates? If we wanted to anger our neighbors across the inlet we might call it “Cedar Cove.” I thought of some other ideas:

A. Ferryland
B. Really West Seattle
C. Shipyardia
D. Bremerton Island (The New York Times already called it that once anyway.)
E. Gatesville (after William Gates, Sr.)
F. North Los Angeles (Go Dodgers!)

I’m open to your ideas. Let’s compile a few and have a vote.


Speaking of tavern openings

Tuesday, May 29th, 2012

In the course of researching our story on the re-opening of the old Wig Wam Tavern in Gorst, I heard that Scott Kirvan has plans to open a microbrewery at the old Beachcomber restaurant in Port Orchard. He’s got his sights set on a soft opening early in July with a grand opening a couple of weeks later.

The name planned is the Slaughter County Brewing Company, referring of course to the name that Kitsap County had before it became Kitsap. In January 1857, legislators named the newly formed county after William A. Slaughter, an Army Lieutenant who had been killed by Indians on the White River a year before. Maybe they thought the name wasn’t too inviting, because on July 13, 1857, Slaughter County was renamed Kitsap County to honor Chief Kitsap, a Suquamish military leader. But of course Slaughter County sounds so much more colorful, so folks who want to sound edgy have resurrected it on occasion.

Kirvan, who’s been making beer at home for 25 years, will be brewing on the premises in a “three-barrel brew system), which makes about 100 gallons at a time. He’ll offer other beers and ales, including some hard-to-find varieties.

“We’re going, stylistically, for a place that’s rustic with a maritime and pirate influence,” Kirvan said. “We’ll do some live entertainment, but we’ll stick with things like Irish bands, jug bands. …We’re not (at least as long as we can avoid it) going to carry hard-liquor and we really don’t want to be seen as a another night club in Port Orchard — our focus is on our beer, but we want to create a welcoming neighborhood atmosphere, in a striking location, that serves the folks that don’t like the night-club scene.”

On the menu is food that looks quite upscale for pirates. An example: Bagna Calda, confit de garlic in butter oil and anchovies — served hot with crostini.


County map shows priority plow routes

Wednesday, January 18th, 2012

In case you missed it on Kitsap County’s website, here is a map showing the county’s plan for keeping roads open during snow.

Red routes showing the main roads are given high priority. The county’s goal is to get and keep them open within the first 36 hours.
“Primary roads provide the highest degree of mobility, serve major centers of activity, and are high traffic volume links between suburban centers and outlying communities. Crews plow and sand primary roads first, and continue until they are clear. When primary roads are clear crews move to secondary roads.”

Blue routes are secondary. The county gets to them as they are able, but within the first 36 hours, if snow continues to fall, they’ll focus on the primary routes.
Secondary routes “link local communities with primary roads. Secondary roads may enter residential neighborhoods, provide direct property access, and move traffic from primary roads to local access roads.”

“Local access roads serve residential single family homes, multiple dwelling developments, commercial business offices, and industrial development. They also provide access to developments from secondary roads, and provide circulation through neighborhoods. Crews work on local access roads after primary and secondary roads are cleared.”

County Plow Map


Poulsbo in picture-perfect pose

Saturday, January 14th, 2012

Bruce Bryant of Poulsbo has set up a webcam overlooking Poulsbo from somewhere high in the hills near Raab Park.

I, for one, will be checking it a lot today. The sun is shining brightly in Bremerton right now (3:24 p.m., Saturday). I just returned from Silverdale, where it was also a sunny, sunny day. The picture in Poulsbo, though, is a little gray. And they were snowed on earlier.

Feel free to let us know if you see snow at your house, or anywhere you’re traveling. Of course I’m most interested in Kitsap weather, but if you’re in Iowa or something I wouldn’t stop you from chiming in.


Kitsap County ranks high in producing Peace Corps’ volunteers

Monday, December 12th, 2011

Kitsap County joins two Oregon communities in ranking high in per capital participation with the Peace Corps in 2011. Eugene and Roseburg in Oregon are also on the organization’s Top Ten list.

This is the first year for Kitsap, labeled “Bremerton-Silverdale,” the traditional grouping when organizations like this issue lists categorizing Census groups.

Kitsap has 9.1 volunteers per 100,000 residents according to a Peace Corps press release, which follows.

Oregon is the third highest volunteer producer and Washington is seventh, per capita.

Bremerton-Silverdale Debuts at No. 7 on Peace Corps’ List of Top Volunteer Producing Metropolitan Areas Per Capita
Seattle Ranks No. 6 Among Metro Areas; Washington Ranks No. 6 Among States

SEATTLE – December 8, 2011 – The Bremerton-Silverdale area makes its debut on the Peace Corps’ Top Metropolitan Areas list this year. Twenty-two currently-serving Peace Corps volunteers call the Bremerton-Silverdale area home, making it the No. 9 metropolitan area in the nation for producing Peace Corps volunteers per capita.

“Washington is the anchor for the Peace Corps in the Northwest,” Peace Corps Regional Manager Janet Allen said. “Many cities, towns and universities across the state have made huge contributions to the 50-year legacy of the Peace Corps. It’s no surprise to see several metro areas in Washington on the Peace Corps rankings this year.”

Seattle ranks No. 6 among metropolitan areas and Washington ranks No. 6 among states. Olympia ranks No. 13 among metropolitan areas per capita.

Historically, Washington has produced 8,631 Peace Corps volunteers who have helped promote a better understanding between Americans and the people of the 139 countries in which they have served. This ranks the state No. 3 for historical production of Peace Corps volunteers behind California and New York, respectively.

To see the full list of Peace Corps Top States and Metro Areas, visit www.peacecorps.gov/media .

Peace Corps’ nine regional recruiting offices across the United States work to recruit and provide information and guidance to prospective Peace Corps volunteers. The Peace Corps Northwest Regional Office serves Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon and Washington. Peace Corps representatives work locally throughout the region. Applicants are encouraged to plan ahead and apply for Peace Corps service one year in advance of their target departure date.

The Peace Corps is recruiting Americans from all backgrounds and skill levels. Americans with backgrounds in agriculture, the environment, teaching English as a second language, and other technical or language skills related to Peace Corps assignment areas, such as French or Spanish language, are encouraged to apply online at www.peacecorps.gov/apply .

About the Peace Corps: President John F. Kennedy established the Peace Corps on March 1, 1961, by executive order. Throughout 2011, the Peace Corps is commemorating 50 years of promoting peace and friendship around the world. Historically, more than 200,000 Americans have served with the Peace Corps to promote a better understanding between Americans and the people of 139 host countries. Today, 9,095 volunteers are working with local communities in 75 host countries. Peace Corps volunteers must be U.S. citizens and at least 18 years of age. Peace Corps service is a 27-month commitment. Visit www.peacecorps.gov for more information.

*Peace Corps data current as of September 30, 2011. The metropolitan area data used to determine Peace Corps’ rankings is derived from the most current U.S. Census Bureau “Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Area” data. The U.S. Census population data is based on 2009 estimates. Volunteers self-report their home city and state on their Peace Corps application.


Banana spotting at the library

Monday, September 5th, 2011

I’m working on Labor Day, so I feel entitled to burden you with inanity.

Across from the office is the downtown Bremerton branch of the Kitsap Regional Library. A kid in a banana suit just tried to get in.

I don’t have much more to say about it than that. Well there is the thought that this isn’t exactly banana suit weather, but I’ve officially been an adult for 31.5 years now. Better that, though, than being forced to wear the sheep costume I saw on the street corner in front of Target in Silverdale earlier today and yesterday. However much they’re paying that person is not enough.

Is there a mascot costume appropriate for temperatures in the 80s? If there is not, then I suppose a banana is as appropriate as any.


Tell us about your job and why it matters

Monday, May 16th, 2011

In today’s Kitsap Sun, we are launching a series on the post-recession workplace. It’s not only about where people are working — and why — it’s about how each of us feels about the work we do day in day out.

We’re looking for plenty of reader involvement, and we have a few themes in mind:

Kitsap’s Dirtiest Jobs (the portable toilet business is just the beginning — one pest company owner told me he doesn’t do lice anymore)

New on the Job (first “real” jobs and new careers)

Life’s Clones (making a living off those of us too busy to cover the basics)

Feeding Kitsap (food services routinely ranks among the top five of Kitsap industries)

Bean Counters (with the recession we have developed a heightened respect for those adept with numbers)

New Beasts (jobs that didn’t exist before the Internet)

Green Jobs (turning out to be underwhelming according to one local jobs expert)

The Military Connection (no way could we ignore this category)

Even if your job doesn’t fit into a category, tell us about what you do to make a living and why it matters. Find us on Facebook and at the Kitsap Sun’s Peninsular Thinking blog, email chenry@kitsapsun.com or call (360) 792-9219. Remember to leave your contact information.

Thanks, Chris Henry, reporter


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