Monthly Archives: May 2014

Retail sales picked up across Kitsap in 2013

Some are still digging out from the recession, some are reaching new heights, but all Kitsap cities reported growth in retail sales last year.

The chart below shows total taxable sales by year, as reported to the state Department of Revenue, which released fresh figures from 2013 last week.

These sales include stores, along with many services, and industries like construction and hospitality. Wave your pointer over the lines to see exact values:

Growth was rampant in Port Orchard, which posted 17 percent gain in sales between 2012 and 2013. Bremerton recorded the slowest growth but is still trending upward.

The Department of Revenue also broke out retail trade statistics for 2012 and 2013. Retail trade includes stores, dealerships and online sellers and excludes services and industries like construction.

Here’s a look at just retail trade sales by city: Continue reading

Buffalo Wild Wings is indeed coming to Silverdale

bwwRestaurant and sports bar chain Buffalo Wild Wings plans to open a store in Silverdale this fall. And that’s about all we know for now.

Regional Marketing Manger Jon Gotreau said the Kitsap restaurant is expected to open in the fourth quarter of 2014. Details on the location have not been finalized, he said. The chain is already hiring for managers in Silverdale.

Buffalo Wild Wings has locations in Tukwila, Federal Way and Tacoma. Another was rumored in downtown Seattle. The Ohio-based company has hundreds of outlets spread across all 50 states.

I’ve never actually been to a Buffalo Wild Wings, but like anyone who’s ever watched a game of football on television, I’ve seen their ads.

Kitsap employment up, labor force still shrinking

employmentFamiliar employment trends continued in April, with the number of jobs in Kitsap increasing, employment among its residents growing slightly, and the labor force shrinking.

Kitsap Jobs

Kitsap employers added about 400 employees between March and April, according to the Employment Security Department (see the chart above). Those added jobs came from construction, retail, hospitality and local government, among other trades.

Employment in the county continues to outpace 2012 and 2013 as the busy summer season approaches.



The county unemployment rate fell to 5.5 percent in April, in line with the statewide trend.

Kitsap’s labor force (the total number of workers and job seekers) declined, dropping from 116,320  to 115,110. Meanwhile, 80 residents started jobs, raising the number of employed to 108,770. The combination of those factors caused the unemployment rate to fall by 1.1 percent between March and April. Continue reading

Silverdale distillery opens this week

blog.tuckerMaking a good whiskey takes time. So does starting a distillery.

After navigating a long approval process, both for its location and its spirits, Tucker Distillery will hold its grand opening Saturday. Dave and Jeanette Tucker are already busy distilling in their warehouse at 5451 NW Newberry Hill Road in Silverdale.

blog.tucker2The Tuckers are starting out with an “ultra smooth” corn vodka and clear corn whiskey before branching out to new varieties. They’ll have 300 bottles on hand for the opener this weekend and plan to make about 4,000 cases this year.

You may start seeing the bottles in local bars and grocery stores soon. The Tuckers are pursuing wholesale accounts.

“We’ll have our grand opening, then I can start pounding the pavement,” Jeanette said.

The Tucker grand opening runs from noon to 7 p.m. Saturday, with a live band playing from 2-4 p.m. See the distillery’s page on Facebook for more information and watch for a larger story in the Monday Kitsap Sun.


Kitsap Tours seeking new owners

blog.kitsaptoursThe owners of sightseeing company Kitsap Tours have set their sights on retirement.

Founders Jean and Jim Boyle plan to step away after their tour season ends in November. They hope to sell the company before then.

“I’d like to see someone take the business and do a lot more with it, rather than shutting the doors and selling the bus,” Jean said. “There are so many more opportunities.”

Kitsap Tours picks up passengers from the Bainbridge Island ferry and shuttles them to popular West Sound destinations. A video monitor in the bus plays interpretive footage along the way.

The company’s three main tour packages include a visit to Bloedel Reserve, an excursion around Bainbridge Island, and a foray from the island into Poulsbo, Port Gamble and Suquamish.Trips to the Olympic Peninsula and local farms are offered periodically. The business operates four days a week.

Jean sees potential for a new owner to expand Kitsap Tours with more vehicles (it currently has one bus) and a broader offering of tours and shuttle services. She said the company grown steadily since launching in 2010 and drew more than 1,000 tourists to Kitsap last year. It’s well reviewed on sites like TripAdvisor.

The Boyles are looking forward to spending more time in their garden, but they’ll also miss life as tour guides.

“It’s just fun,” Jean said. “It’s a fun business.”

Read our 2010 story on the launch of Kitsap Tours here. For more on the sale of Kitsap Tours, click here.

Safeway opening Poulsbo store June 27; hiring 120


A grand opening for Poulsbo’s Safeway store and gas station is now set for June 27.

Safeway spokeswoman Sara Osborne said the 59,000-square-foot store at Lincoln Road and 10th Avenue will have about 160 employees. Of those, 120 will be new hires. The company refers job seekers to its website for application information.

Osborne said the store will have all the accustomed Safeway departments, including produce, natural and organic foods, a bakery, floral kiosk, videos, and pharmacy. The deli will feature sushi, sandwiches, a China Express, an olive bar and a soup bar.

Seating for the deli is situated by windows with views to the west and south, alongside an indoor fireplace. Outdoor seating will be available at the front of the store.

A Starbucks coffee shop and US Bank branch are integrated into the building. The gas station has 10 pumps.

Safeway was a featured sponsor of Poulsbo’s Viking Fest last weekend and is sponsoring the Third of July celebration, Osborne said.

Construction began on the store in early 2013 with an opening originally planned for December, and later projected for May.


Food Safety: Restaurant grades for April

As a new feature here on the Minding Your Business blog, I’ll be posting monthly food safety grades distributed by the Kitsap Public Health District.

The health district keeps tabs on more than 1,000 establishments in Kitsap. Each is usually inspected twice a year. Inspectors make sure food is handled properly from prep to serving. The district works with operators to correct deficiencies. Grades from the inspections are made available to the public.

The inspection report from April is posted below. For even more detailed safety information on a restaurant, you can use the health district’s handy database search. Continue reading

Pope Resources CEO leaving for Rayonier

blog.popeDavid Nunes, president and CEO of timber company Pope Resources, is leaving the company to join Rayonier Inc.

Nunes plans to depart Pope at the end of the month, according to a Monday news release. He led Pope for 12 years.

The Pope board of directors has already begun a search for Nunes’ replacement. Longtime CFO Thomas Ringo will serve as interim CEO.

“We are tremendously appreciative of the job Dave has done in his 12 years as CEO of the Partnership,” lead director Douglas Norberg said in the release. “We wish him the best as he embarks on his new responsibilities at Rayonier.

Pope Resources is based in Poulsbo. It owns the town of Port Gamble and large swaths of forestland in North Kitsap. Pope and its subsidiaries, Olympic Resource Management and Olympic Property Group, own or manage a total of 204,000 acres of timberland and development property in Washington, Oregon, and California.

Florida-based Rayonier owns or manages 2.6 million acres of timberland and produces wood fiber products.

Report: Bainbridge Island’s Avalara could go public

gI_113668_PrimaryLogo_Tagline_RGB_Bainbridge Island tax software company Avalara could soon go public, according to Emily Parkhurst of the Puget Sound Business Journal.

Parkhurst reports the company is preparing to file an S-1 form with the Securities and Exchange Commission, a first step toward trading stock publicly.

As she notes, Avalara recently raised capital from its existing investors and could be poised for rapid growth as more Internet retailers are required to collect sales tax. The company is even working with Bitcoin.

Avalara provides software for sales tax calculation and compliance.

Read the full PSBJ story here.

New Kingston brewery plans summer opening

blog.breweryKingston could have a new watering hole this summer.

A new brewery called Downpour plans to open in the former Sacks Feed & Garden. Downpour Brewing applied for a microbrewery license Thursday for 10991 Highway 104.

We haven’t heard back from the owners yet, but the brewery’s page on Facebook suggests it could open in early July. Downpour would be the 11th licensed microbrewery in the county and the sixth in North Kitsap.