Monthly Archives: February 2010

Concerned About Loved Ones in Hawaii?

Earlier today, when we heard that the earthquake in Chile had caused a tsunami that was heading for the Hawaiian Islands, I thought of my niece and her family (husband and two toddlers) who have recently moved to Hilo. She sent the family an e-mail to say their house is up high enough that they are out of danger. Some people evacuating the city, however, were parking in her neighborhood.

I’m sure with our Navy connections many folks in Kitsap are wondering about their loved ones in the Hawaiian Islands. I just saw this number on the television that you can call if you haven’t been able to get information any other way.

(808) 474-1999.


P.S. It’s 1:39 Pacific time; well past the time when experts predicted the tsunami would hit Hilo. Maybe it won’t be a big event. Folks in Hawaii are used to this. Hopefully any damage will be minimal.

South Kitsap Woman Vies for Spot on Survivor

Amy Anderson, a Port Orchard resident who placed third in the local Bayview Idol contest last year, is in the running for a spot on “Survivor” the reality (?) television show. I’m not familiar with the program, but I know it has a loyal following.

Anderson is a singer and actress who has participated in community theater at Western Washington Center for the Arts. She has performed in “Fiddler on the Roof,” “Steel Magnolias,” “A Year with Frog and Toad” and will soon perform in “Harvey” and “Guys and Dolls.”

Anderson tells us she was chosen from among 2,100 applicants as “one of the top 10 to win an audition” for the show. To progress, she needs to earn votes. Catch a video of Anderson and cast your vote for a chance to bring South Kitsap even more fame and fortune than it already enjoys.

Here’s a video from the Bayview Idol contest, hosted by Bayview Java & Deli

Helpline Purchases Port Orchard Nursery

By Chris Henry
South Kitsap Helpline announced Wednesday that it has finalized purchase of the Port Orchard Nursery.
The food bank has been working since last spring to raise funds to buy the landmark establishment, opened as a nursery in 1949 by the Greseth the family.
Helpline received a $300,000 grant from the Birkenfeld Trust in May, which helped jump start the fund-raising effort.
The sale includes the business site, complete with a two-story home, a store, three large commercial greenhouses, a lath house and plant beds. The nursery is on a bus line and near other social services and free meal programs, which will be a boon to Helpline clients, said Director Jennifer Hardison, in an e-mailed press release.
“This purchase will positively impact the lives and health of thousands in our community and beyond, while dramatically expanding Helpline’s services currently offered,” Hardison said.
In purchasing the nursery, Helpline’s board of directors hopes to provide food bank clients and local meal programs with fresh local produce year ‘round. Vegetable starts grown from seed will be offered to community gardens and P-patches throughout Kitsap County.
The existing home on the site will house agency offices and a clothing bank. The current storefront will be renovated to create a choice-based, self-serve food bank. A teaching facility, complete with a commercial kitchen will be constructed for use by food bank clients and the general public.
The food bank will generate revenue by selling flowers, plants, produce and vegetable starts grown and sold both on-site and off-site at local farmers markets.
“This will help to bring in more consistent revenue to fund our expanding programs,” Hardison said. “Additionally, we plan to sell items we grow at a local food co-op and will have contracts with local restaurants for fresh herbs and produce.”
Additional opportunities for revenue include offering paid classes and workshops to the public, as well as renting out the commercial kitchen.
Food bank clients and others who volunteer at the nursery will gain valuable skills in horticulture and landscaping that can be transferred to paid positions, Hardison said.
For more information, visit or call (360) 876-4089.

Getting the “Dirt” on Sustainable Cinema

Coming up this Sunday is the second in a series of monthly documentaries on sustainable living to be shown at the Historic Orchard Theatre in Port Orchard. The Sustainable Cinema series is hosted by Kitsap County, specifically South Kitsap Commissioner Charlotte Garrido.

Garrido, on Monday, said the series is intended as a complement to the activities of the numerous groups around Kitsap County —including the county itself — that are dedicated to preserving natural resources and promoting a sustainable lifestyle.

Sustainability, in short, is the capacity to endure. The goal is a world in which human needs are fulfilled in a manner that does not deplete the source of those needs. Locally, initiatives related to sustainability involve food, construction, environmental protection and other efforts.

About 30 people attended January’s showing of “End of the Line” a documentary about the effects of over-fishing. Coming up this month is the award-winning “Dirt, the Movie,” about the nature, importance and surprising fragility of soil.

Garrido said she got the idea for the Sustainable Cinema series last year while in Washington D.C. for a conference. In D.C., the film festival involved a number of venues.

Kitsap is not D.C., but the Orchard is known for showing documentaries and other non-mainstream cinema. Future films will depend on what’s available at any given time, said Garrido. Suffice it to say there is no lack of material. She showed me a catalog chock full of documentaries on sustainability.

To pay for the series, Garrido has allocated $750 of the South Kitsap Commissioners discretionary fund. Each of the three Kitsap County commissioners has money in the county’s budget to spend on projects specific to his or her area of the county, “things that wouldn’t get done any other way,” Garrido said. The cost to bring the films to The Orchard is around $100 each. Once the $750 is expended, Garrido said she herself would fund additional showings as long as there is sufficient interest.

Garrido welcomes suggestions for documentaries people would like to see. E-mail her at

What: Dirt the Movie
When: 4:35 p.m. Sunday
Where: Historic Orchard Theatre, 822 Bay St., Port Orchard
Cost: $3 (usual adult price is $9.50)

Sally Santana Awarded for Work on Homelessness

Sally Santana, a Port Orchard resident, has been named “Citizen of the Year” by the Kitsap County Association of Realtors.

Santana is a champion of the county’s homeless population. She recently organized a successful homelessness summit attended by numerous community leaders and elected officials.

Santana was recognized at the association’s annual installation banquet held at the My Girl Drive-In in Kingston. Santana was unable to attend, but Port Orchard Mayor Lary Coppola, a former recipient of the Association’s Citizen of the Year Award, accepted the award on Santana’s behalf, saying that he could not think of anyone more deserving.

Santana is the host of the Kitsap Sun blog Side Street News, covering issues, events and services related to Kitsap’s homeless population. She also writes the column Faith and Values, which runs every other week in the Kitsap Sun and on

Other awards presented for service in 2009 include:
REALTOR® of the Year – Pablo Lozano (Reid Real Estate, Bremerton)
REALTOR® Special Achievement – Penny McLaughlin (Penny’s Team, Poulsbo)
Jenks Beard Award for Community Service – Ron Ross (Silverdale Realty, Silverdale)
Affiliate of the Year – Rob Nitz (Prime Lending, Silverdale)
Floyd Luckerath REALTOR® Spirit Award – Richard Brown (Kitsap Commercial Group, Port Orchard)

Port Orchard Going Green, Going it Alone

One of Port Orchard Mayor Lary’s Coppola’s goals for 2010 (see below) is a push to make the city more green. That’s green as in environmentally friendly, not as in planting more trees.

Coppola, in his video newsletter for February, echoed the thoughts all other local government leaders when he said, “In this day and age, it makes absolutely no sense from any standpoint for the city not to be green.”

Among Port Orchard’s green initiatives is a plan to do energy audits on all facilities, a practical but hardly novel idea.

Four other local governments — the cities of Bremerton, Poulsbo, Bainbridge Island and the Port of Bremerton — are taking advantage of federal stimulus money and a Puget Sound Energy program to reduce energy usage over three years.

The three cities (minus PO) and the port will hire a single employee for three years to study how each jurisdiction can save on energy costs. The program is projected to save 2 percent on energy usage during the first year and 5 percent during each of the next two. Total savings for the four agencies is expected to be around $278,000 in year three.

The Bremerton and Poulsbo city councils approved the agreement Wednesday. The Bainbridge Island City Council and the Port of Bremerton commissioners will consider the issue this week.

Port Orchard was invited to participate, but members of the City Council’s finance committee declined. The chief concern among finance committee members, Coppola told Kitsap Sun reporter Steve Gardner, was that the city would be on the hook to pay a permanent salary beyond the three-year program.

That’s characteristic of Port Orchard. City officials’ penchant for fiscal conservatism remains intact since the departure of long-time Treasurer Kris Tompkins, replaced on retirement by former assistant state treasurer Allan Martin.

Coppola, in the video, takes full advantage of comparing his city’s relatively sound finances (no lay-offs or furloughs to date) to those of Bremerton and Kitsap County.

Coppola, in his video address, said the city will be looking into other sources of PSE funding and stimulus grants for help implementing energy savings identified through internal audits.

Among Port Orchard’s other proposed green initiatives:

Reduce Paper Use
The city in its most recent utility bill mailing announced that customers can sign up for automatic withdrawal from checking or savings. For customers, it’s a matter of convenience, but it’s also a step on the city’s part toward conducting more business online. So far 51 utility customers have signed up. Coppola says if more people pay bills online, the city will save in postage, materials and ultimately staff time. The city treasurer’s office is also working to implement a separate program, in response to citizens’ requests, that will allow use of credit or debit cards for utility bill payment.

Coppola is also pushing for a move to online information packets for city council meetings. Each council member receives a packet for each of 38 meetings each year; that amounts to five reams, or 2,500 pages, of paper per meeting. Total paper used per year: 180 reams. It all adds up, said Coppola, who has suggested that computer terminals be placed at each council member’s seat so they could access materials online during meetings as well as from home.

My thoughts: Presumably paper copies of meeting packets and minutes would still be available on request to any member of the public who lacks computer access.

Hybrid Cars
The Port Orchard Police Chief has a hybrid. Coppola said that, as other vehicles come up for replacement, the city will look into getting hybrids.

Solar Power
The city, according to Coppola, will explore using solar power at pump stations and other “remote” facilities. Although “not a total solution,” it’s worth looking into , he said.

See below for a list of Mayor Lary Coppola’s goals for the city of Port Orchard in 2010 Continue reading

Video: Feb. 9 Meeting of Port Orchard City Council and Other City News

Find a video of the meeting on the City of Port Orchard’s Web site or on the Kitsap Sun.

The city council will hold a work study tonight at 7 p.m. at City Hall, 219 Prospect St.

Don’t forget the council’s retreat 9 a.m. to noon Friday, also at City Hall.

The council’s public property committee met Monday with representatives from the Master Gardeners and Port Orchard Rotary about setting up pea patch gardens in one of the city’s parks. I believe they’re looking at the Dwight Street Park.

Mayor Lary Coppola recently recorded his first video “Mayor’s Report.” According to Coppola’s Facebook page, the video will be posted on the City’s Web site,, hopefully before the end of the day today.

Find more videos relating to life in South Kitsap here, on the Kitsap Sun.

In Case You Haven’t Read Enough About Delilah …

Washington Post reporter Ellen McCarthy has written an in-depth article about Delilah, local celebrity in the town that shall not be named. McCarthy respectfully preserves Delilah’s privacy. She writes:

“Delilah’s business partner, Kraig Kitchin, who also works with Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck, had one request in setting up this interview: that the small town she lives in not be named. In the past, Delilah has had problems with stalkers, including one who was jailed. Still, she’s a well-known figure around town, owner of a restaurant called Delilah’s Cozy Kitchin, and has been written up in the local paper.”

Granted there’s not just one local paper; neither are there scores to choose from. So it would seem that horse is already out of the barn.

Describing Delilah, McCarthy writes, “For her predominantly female audience, Delilah Rene’s show is the comforting auditory equivalent of chicken pot pie, a silk floral arrangement or an ’80s-era stenciled wallpaper border.”

The focus of the article is Delilah’s love life (the article publish on Valentine’s day). It’s a good read, thoughtfully written.

“Sit with the woman for a few hours, and she’ll run through the whole thing: the doomed marriages, the 10 children — three biological, the rest adopted — the drama and dysfunction,” McCarthy writes, then goes on to detail same.

I got a kick out of this description of Delilah:

“She displays a more chic aesthetic than her radio persona suggests: Today she’s wearing dark jeans and sophisticated glasses and talking in a cadence that is quicker and more animated than it is on air. But both versions of Delilah come with the same thunderous laugh.”

My thoughts: “Chic aesthetic” is a relative term, depending on whether you’re from Washington, D.C., or the town that shall not be named.

The article amply covers Delilah’s love life (portrayed as previously a mess, presently tenuous in nature). McCarthy does a nice job of explaining it in the context of Delilah’s professional success, hunger for children, contradictory personality and personal faith.

From the article:
“When a neighbor invited her to church the next weekend, she went. It felt as if everything the pastor said was directed straight at her. ‘And that was the day I gave my heart to God,’ she says.”

Speaking of a good read, Kitsap Sun reporter Steve Gardner — who once got on Delilah’s bad side for writing openly about her property while covering a land use issue — recently wrote about conversion (not Delilah’s and not only religious or spiritual). The article is about the conditions that make us receptive to making major life changes. Interestingly, two of Gardner’s subjects echo what Delilah said about religious conversion. While mending a tattered marriage, the couple began attending church, and …

“Over the next several weeks, the Andersons felt like the sermons were meant for them,” Gardner wrote.

Another woman in Gardner’s article, who suffered from a debilitating illness and severe isolation, took up roller derby. So you can see the term “conversion” is used in a broad sense.

Happy reading.

Find PO Council Videos on Kitsap Sun Web Site

The Port Orchard City Council meets tonight. You can find a video of the Jan. 26 council meeting, courtesy of the City of Port Orchard, on the Kitsap Sun’s Web site.

Find an archive of South Kitsap videos at this URL.

In other City of Port Orchard news, the city council will hold a retreat at 2 p.m. 9 a.m. on Feb. 19.

The City Council will hold a Retreat on Friday, February 19, 2010, at City Hall. Items for discussion will be:

• Council Goals and Objectives

The meeting is open to the public and will begin at 2:00 p.m. For more information, please contact the City Clerk’s office at 360.876.4407.

Bethel North Annexation Not Dead Yet

For a map of the area, courtesy of the City of Port Orchard, see below.

Proponents have strategy to extend the deadline for approval of the annexation petition.
By Chris Henry
Proponents of an annexation on the Bethel Corridor that would bring 387 parcels of property into the City of Port Orchard have not given up their plan, even though the original six month deadline for collecting signatures on the annexation petition has come and gone.
Joining the city would give property owners within South Kitsap’s main commercial thoroughfare the advantage of urban level services, said Gary Anderson of Kitsap Commercial Group. The city stands to gain increased revenue from the annexation, which includes the Safeway shopping complex at the corner of Bethel Avenue and Tremont Street, Walmart and the site of a future Home Depot.
The city has already annexed the Fred Meyer shopping complex at the south end of the corridor, as well as other properties at the intersection of Bethel Avenue and Sedgwick Road.
The total assessed value of properties within the 555-acre annexation area is $145 million. Property owners representing at least 60 percent of the total value must sign the petition for the annexation to move forward. Proponents have a six-month window within which to gather the required number of signatures.
The total assessed value represented by signatures collected to date is 53 percent, a mere 7 percentage points shy of the goal. The earliest signatures on the petition are dated July 29.
Although the six-month deadline is up, Anderson and others leading the annexation campaign have a strategy for staying in the game.
According to City Attorney Greg Jacoby, signatures older than sixth months are automatically invalid. However, nothing prevents those property owners from signing again.
“It’s as if those people have never signed,” Jacoby said. “All the other signatures on the petition though remain valid. So in effect you can have a rolling petition.”
Anderson’s plan is to revisit those who signed early in the campaign and ask them to sign again, with the new date recorded as the legal date of signing. Once the 60 percent threshold has been met, as long as all signatures are within a six month time frame, the petition is valid in favor of annexation.
The total assessed value required is just more than $87 million. So far just more than $77 million is accounted for (including signatures that are more than six months old).
“Trying to get that last 10 percent is always the toughest,” said Anderson.
Large retailers that have signed include Safeway and Rite Aid, Anderson said. Walmart and Home Depot are in the midst of processing permits with the county, and so have not signed. According to Anderson, representatives of those companies have said they’re not opposed to annexation but leery of affecting the permit process. If the annexation is approved, the Walmart and Home Depot properties would become part of the city regardless of if they’ve signed, because they are within annexation boundaries.

Bethel North Boundary Map