News Roundup -- Frey leaving BIAHC post/Indipinos honor heritage/The voices on Iraq’s streets

Frey leaving BIAHC post

For more than half its life, the Bainbridge Island Arts and Humanities Council has had the hand of Nancy Frey at the helm. But as it turns 20, the council will have to find a new captain.

“She has been the guidepost,” BIAHC board president Marilyn Turkovich said. “She came along when the organization was struggling and helped stabilize it and give it a new direction.”

Tuesday, the council announced that Frey, the executive director, will leave her post May 15. Frey declined to comment at this time about her departure.

Frey added many new programs to the council, most notably the Bainbridge Island Arts Education Community Consortium, which enriches arts learning in schools. Turkovich says the art education program is the council’s largest in terms of dollar amount – although most of it is covered by grants.

“(Another) very important product that was initiated during Nancy’s time was Arts News,” Turkovich said. “It’s not only important to BIAHC, but important to all the arts organizations. It’s a way to get out what is happening in arts on Bainbridge Island to every household.”

Turkovich said the council, which is beginning the search for a new executive director, will be evaluating candidates carefully.

“I’m quite certain she’ll be tough to replace,” she said. “We’ll certainly take our time to make sure we find the right person to replace her.”

– Tina Lieu

Indipinos honor heritage

For generations, Bainbridge Island’s Indipino community gathered to cook for and celebrate weddings and birthdays. So, it’s no surprise that when the community honors its Filipino and Native American heritage this weekend, there will be plenty of food and dancing.

“We wanted to honor our grandfathers (and grandmothers). We’re proud of our heritage, the language, food and culture,” said Millie Loughnane, whose grandfathers came to Bainbridge from the Philippines.

Their Filipino grandfathers tilled the island soil on Japanese American farms and their First Nation grandmothers came from Canadian reservations to plant and harvest berries. Their children, the island’s Indipinos, host the fourth annual Indipino Festival, noon-6 p.m. March 25 at the Filipino American Hall, 7566 High School Road. The potluck dinner begins at 1 p.m.

The 91st birthday of island elder Mary Louise Rapada will also be feted.

Loughnane remembers how weddings were never catered. At her wedding, her uncles came to cook up lumpia, “chocolate meat” and chicken adobo for the party. Growing up, she was imbued with the values of her two heritages: respect, family values and working hard.

As a little girl, Loughnane picked berries in the fields to earn her own money. A testament to their hard work, Loughnane’s grandparents managed to save enough money from berry picking to buy their own acreage.

The festivities begin with a blessing and honoring ceremony at noon, followed by a 1 p.m. birthday celebration and potluck dinner, for which all attendees are encouraged to bring a favorite dish to share. Dancing performances will be staged by an Alaskan dance group’s Native American dances, Hawaiian dancers, and the Suquamish Canoe and Dance group.

Then at 4 p.m. take a seat to hear old-time family stories.

For more information, call Coleen Almojuela at 842-7842, Rudy Rimando at 842-7402 or Loughnane at (360) 697-2042.

– Tina Lieu

The voices on Iraq’s streets

Distribute 150 digital video cameras among ordinary Iraqi citizens and what stories will they tell?

“Voices of Iraq” did exactly that, from April through September of 2004. The producers edited together more than 400 hours of raw footage to make the documentary “Voices of Iraq.”

This film is the second in a series of four films the American Legion is sponsoring this spring. It will be shown at 7 p.m. March 24 at the American Legion Hall on Bucklin Hill Road.

The film is free – although donations are welcome – and dinner is available for a suggested donation of $7.50 adults and $5 for ages 12 and under. Parents are advised of possible disturbing images for children under 12.

The film producers, Eric Manes, Archie Drury and Martin Kunert, instructed the amateur filmmakers to videotape the person’s neighborhood and world around them, and then videotape interviews with people who play a meaningful role in their life.

Some of the cameras also ended up in the hands of insurgents who recorded scenes, including the planned ambush of a Humvee.

Ron Luke of the American Legion says the film series is part of the organization’s “Americanism” program, one of the Legion’s founding principals. It looks at American values and presents information “that helps people consider the American way of life,” Luke said.

The next two films shown will be at 7 p.m. at the hall.

On April 28 is “The Conspiracy,” an HBO presentation about the Nazis and how they planned to secretly carry out their atrocities; and on May 27 is “The War on Terrorism Inside 9/11,” a National Geographic documentary that begins with the invasion of Afghanistan, talks about the background of Al Qaeda and continues through the first World Trade Center bombings, the Gulf War, the 9/11 attacks and up to 2005. For information, call the American Legion at 842-5000.

– Tina Lieu

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