News

Council fails to reach accord on housing regs

"The Bainbridge Island City Council decided Monday to take a two-pronged approach to the suddenly contentious issue of affordable housing - a short-term fix for people now in the process, and a broad review of the whole concept.But even those actions won't be quick or easy.I think what you heard today indicates that virtually every member of the council wants changes in the comprehensive plan, Councilman Norm Wooldridge said. "

  • Oct 11, 2000

The next celestial quest

"The people who brought a first-class astronomical observatory to Bainbridge Island have a new goal:Outer space.The Battle Point Astronomical Association and its president, Mac Gardiner, want to attach a telescope for amateur astronomers to the International Space Station, which they believe would produce a steady stream of breathtaking photographs.When the Hubble Telescope was pointed at the blackest part of the sky, it saw tens and tens of thousands of galaxies - brand new, Gardiner said.Although its public profile has declined in recent years, the Boeing-built International Space Station is an ongoing project, Gardiner said. In fact, most of the recent space-shuttle launches have involved the ISS.But the station's mission has changed over the years. During the height of the Cold War, the space station was something the United States needed to have before the Soviet Union got one. Then, while enthusiasm for manned space flight persisted, the station was seen as a launching pad for manned expeditions to the planets.Now, the purpose is scientific. NASA and Boeing are inviting applications from people interested in seeing their project included, and will select from among the submissions. "

  • Oct 11, 2000

Phil vs. Phil for 23rd

"The two major-party candidates for state House of Representatives, position 1, in the 23rd District both support greater legislative oversight of the state Department of Ecology.Both support overhauling education funding. Both oppose Initiative 745, Tim Eyman's Son of 695. Both describe themselves as pro-choice. They're even both named Phil.So what are the differences between Democratic incumbent Phil Rockefeller and Republican challenger Phil Rasmussen?Judging by their performances at a Tuesday Eggs and Issues debate, sponsored by the Bremerton Area Chamber of Commerce, the differences mainly relate to priorities. "

  • Oct 7, 2000

Ready for the pennant

"Quoth the sage:Pitching's what wins it.Agreed Graham Wright:We've got a local boy (Poulsbo's Aaron Sele) pitching, and they've got a crippled staff. The local boy's going to be our edge.Kitted out in full Seattle Mariners regalia, Wright and his family were among the throng of islanders heading across the water on Friday's 11:10 ferry, to see the hometown nine face the Chicago White Sox.In tow was the family broom - shaken free of garage spiders - in anticipation of a game-three victory in the divisional playoff. They're gonna sweep, Kathleen Wright predicted, already looking ahead to the next series against the Oakland A's or New York Yankees. "

  • Oct 7, 2000

Council to spar over housing

"The Bainbridge Island City Council will hold a special meeting at 1 p.m. Monday, Oct. 9, to discuss the city's affordable housing ordinance.The purpose of the meeting will be to consider the inconsistency between the comprehensive plan, a 1999 council resolution, and the ordinances on the books - and particularly the uncertainty created for purchasers of affordable housing, including the Weaver Creek sweat-equity project. "

  • Oct 7, 2000

Not taking comfort in school zone

"A point of clarification is in order.After our Wednesday story on speeding drivers and related traffic problems around Blakely Elementary School and other island public schools, more information came across our desk.To help clear up any supposed ambiguities about the 20-mph speed limit that goes into effect when children are present, Bainbridge Police were kind enough to send over a supplemental paragraph from the Washington Administrative Code. "

  • Oct 7, 2000

Scenes from a golden age

"A creaking door. Ominous footsteps. A scream. A murder.All inside your head.That was the power of old-time radio, when a few foreboding words and a well-timed sound effect could chill a million listeners to the bone.A lot of people my age remember it, and a lot of people have no idea what real radio was able to do, said Frank Buxton, local stage and screen veteran and collector of old radio programs. We get a lot of young people who are just fascinated.Buxton and company bring the magic of a bygone entertainment era back to the island this weekend, with their annual autumn production of On the Air: From the Golden Age of Radio. Two shows are slated Saturday at the BPA Playhouse. "

  • Oct 7, 2000

“Bainbridge loses a leader with death of Don Nakata, 66”

"It's been a time for tears and hugs at the Town and Country Market on Winslow Way.Tuesday night, word first reached Bainbridge that Don Nakata, 66, president of the island-based six-store corporation, had died of an apparent stroke in Lafayette, La., while on vacation with his wife Ellen. By Thursday, not only the employees but most of the city had heard.Not just our employees but our customers found that it's okay to walk through the T&C and have tears in your eyes, said Town and Country store director Lyla Derosier.He was a gift to all of us, said Wayne Loverich, part owner and director of the corporation.He was a visionary leader, a very loving, caring and generous man. "

  • Oct 7, 2000

Island School to double in size

"Education is all about expanding beyond limitations. And at the Island School, the most confining limitation has become the physical size of the facility. Our program is dictated by space, said Head of School Kelly Scribner. It should be limited only by our imaginations.Within the next month, the 23-year-old private elementary school on Day Road East will begin an expansion project that will roughly double its 4,400-square-foot size. The new structure will be built immediately to the south of the existing building, with a courtyard separating the two. The addition will house five classrooms and additional bathrooms.Once that building is finished, the current structure will be extensively remodeled to create office space for the administration, a large art room and a workroom for parents and teachers to meet and plan. "

  • Oct 4, 2000

Inspiration on the green

"Of all the seductive illusions of golf, perhaps none is more deeply ingrained than the notion that the latest equipment can overcome all the manifest flaws of one's swing.But Patrick Broom and his island-based Optic Golf are attacking one aspect of the game where physical limitations really aren't confining - the putting game. We've designed a putter that's easy to line up visually, Broom said. And it's easier to make a pendulum stroke through the ball.The first thing you notice about the Optic Z putter line is the Z shape of the neck head. The neck thrusts forward from the club's shaft, then back at a 90-degree angle to join the putter head.The weight on the leading edge (the part that thrusts forward) raises the center of gravity of the putter, Broom said. That makes it easier to create top spin, which holds the ball on line longer.The club is also balanced in such a way that it's less inclined to rotate during the putting stroke, Broom said. "

  • Oct 4, 2000

School zone standards worth a look

"Show up at the roadside in front of Blakely Elementary School with a note pad and a camera, and boy, does one draw a crowd. We hadn't been there five minutes Monday afternoon, before we met half a dozen parents eager to talk about what they perceive as unsafe conditions for youngsters traversing the school zone.While opinions on addressing the issue varied, all were in agreement that the biggest threat to the safety of students around the school grounds is speed, speed, speed. "

  • Oct 4, 2000

Campaigns heat up at island forum

"Eliminating government waste will save so much money that services can be increased even as taxes are cut, Republicans told a Bainbridge Island audience this week.That's wishful thinking, countered Democrats - if taxpayers want government services, they will have to pay for them in the form of taxes.If there's waste, let's look at it, said Sen. Betti Sheldon, D-Bremerton. But we need to be careful about throwing out whole programs. When you really look, you find that there's a person behind every program.The partisan battle lines were drawn at Wednesday's candidate forum sponsored by the Kitsap County League of Women Voters, which drew a capacity audience to the Bainbridge Commons. "

  • Sep 30, 2000

Time for an old-fashioned barn-raising

"You've got the materials, the tools and the skills, and your neighbors need your help.What a great opportunity to help build up a community, as the construction phase of the Marge Williams Center project gets under way.The big news is that things are finally going to start happening, construction manager Norm Down told us this week, over coffee at the Blackbird Bakery. Norm and two of our other favorite people - Wendy Johnson and Ed Kushner - were also on hand, to give us an update on the project and put out the call for volunteers. "

  • Sep 27, 2000

Blaze strikes ferry in repair yard

"Lt. Tim Dahl (right) helps a firefighter with heavy coils of water hose, as they respond to a fire aboard the ferry Walla Walla Tueday morning at the Washington State Ferries maintenance yard on Harborview Drive. No one was injured in the blaze, apparently caused when a welder's sparks ignited some chemicals in the below-decks area of the boat. The fire, which gave off thick black smoke, was quickly extinguished. "

  • Sep 27, 2000

Do more roads equal less traffic?

"A spokesperson for Tim Eyman's November ballot initiatives told a Bainbridge audience Monday that their passage would bring relief from property taxes and traffic congestion.But he had no response to opponents who argued that the the measures will not perform as advertised. There isn't more room to build new roads, said Willem Maas, an opponent of Initiative 745, which would channel 90 percent of all transportation money into road construction and maintenance.While proponents argue that the new money would mean new roads and less congestion, initiative spokesman Marcus Hoffman said he did not know where new roads could be built, nor how much it would cost to add the amount of mileage - 4 percent more than now exists - that initiative proponents say would have a meaningful impact on traffic congestion. "

  • Sep 27, 2000

“Groups bid to curb sewers, growth”

"Three citizens groups have proposed an amendment to the city's comprehensive plan, to sharply curtail the conditions under which sewer service could be expanded.In so doing, the groups hope to slow the rate of population growth in areas outside Winslow.But the city's planning staff has recommended against the change, saying that the resulting growth restrictions would violate state law.The proposal goes against the Growth Management Act, said associate planner Libby Hudson. It uses (an absence of) sewer extension as a way to limit growth rather than zoning for densities. "

  • Sep 27, 2000

Whither Hildebrand?

"True or false: Hildebrand Lane is one of the city's busiest streets.When you look at all the businesses lining the road - three banks, a motel, a video rental outlet, and the state liquor store, among others - to say nothing of the new office building going up, you'd think this is a no-brainer. Obviously, it must be a true statement.But the correct answer is false. Hildebrand is busy, alright. But it's not a city street. "

  • Sep 23, 2000

Splitting the blanket

"So, did everyone enjoy their final blanket primary?Looking at the voter turnout - which may hit, what, 48 percent in Kitsap County, when all the absentees are counted - Washington's venerable one-ballot-for-all free-for-all went out less with a bang than a yawn.Still, it may have provided a good example of why the blanket ballot was so loathed by the major parties. Local Democrats were quick to blame GOP crossover voters for the ouster of incumbent Kitsap County Commissioner Charlotte Garrido (dare we call it...Charlotte's ebb?), bested by challenger Dusty Wiley while Republican Jan Angel nested comfortably in the wings without a primary opponent. We have no idea if it was an organized effort by the GOP; we suspect Democrats would have been happy to do the same thing given the chance, were it not for the county's ongoing shortage of Republican incumbents. "

  • Sep 23, 2000

“Harrison, Woods set for showdown”

"Bainbridge Island and North Kitsap County will be ground zero in the battle to take control of the Washington state House of Representatives.That's because Democratic challenger David Harrison of Bainbridge Island wound up in a virtual tie with incumbent Republican Beverly Woods in Tuesday's primary election, suggesting a down-to-the-wire race in which the Democrats have a real chance at gaining a seat.I've received calls from all over the district and the state, Harrison said Thursday. I'm one of the few, if not the only challenger ahead of an incumbent. This will be one of the three or four hottest races in the state, he said. "

  • Sep 23, 2000

Light of the raven

"Roy Peratrovich learns on the fly.An Alaska native, he played the first football game he ever saw - as a high school senior.From tackling his first engineering problems to founding the Architects and Engineers Insurance Company, Peratrovich admits to jumping into projects without knowing exactly what he's doing. And as a sculptor, his artwork is no exception.It's what they call spatial art, he said, gesturing to a bronze sculpture of otters. I learn these terms from other artists - but I appreciate that you have to be aware of how you fill the space. "

  • Sep 23, 2000