For Immediate Release

December 20, 2018

Happy 100th Birthday, Lime Kiln Light!

Friday Harbor, WA… Want to be in the group photo when one of the most photogenic lighthouses on the West Coast turns 100? There might be whales in the background… Lime Kiln Lighthouse is an internationally recognized icon of the San Juan Islands, and it’s celebrating a landmark birthday in 2019: the Centennial! Friends of Lime Kiln Society (FOLKS) is scheduling the celebration to commemorate the first day the lighthouse was operational on June 30th, 1919. 

Planned festivities will include:

  • Keynote speeches from the Coast Guard and Washington State Parks
  • Lighthouse cake contest and cake walk
  • Silent auction and raffle
  • Special Lighthouse Anniversary wine label

Also planned in 2019 are updates to the park’s interpretive center to enhance the visitor experience. New video displays of marine bioacoustics and footage of marine mammals that frequent the park are in the works as well as a virtual reality experience of the intertidal zone.   

Lime Kiln Light was the last major lighthouse built in the state of Washington, and the last to be connected to electricity. Both the lighthouse and state park are named after the lime kilns built in the area in the 1860s. The lighthouse operated with an incandescent oil-vapor lamp until after World War II, when it was replaced by a lens that used an electric light bulb. Two houses to accommodate the lighthouse’s keepers were built during the construction of the light and are still located behind it.

Today, the beacon flashes every 10 seconds starting at sundown, illuminating around 17 miles of sea, but Erin Corra, the founder of FOLKS, said the signal emits a call far beyond that: the park receives around 350,000 visitors annually from almost all 50 states and roughly 40 different countries. A hydrophone attached to the lighthouse also provides visitors with a marine soundtrack, capturing everything from the pops of snapping shrimp to the elegiac calls of orcas. Also known as Whale Watch Park, Lime Kiln Point State Park is renowned for being one of the best places in the world to view orcas and other whales from shore.  

 

PHOTOS:

https://www.dropbox.com/sh/9x40rbogrwv400p/AAD4cW_0GvhlQgutpSC4BfTma?dl=0

 

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Media Contact:

Barbara Marrett

P.O. Box 1330

Friday Harbor, WA 98250

[email protected]

360-378-6822 ext. 6

 

For Immediate Release

December 19, 2018

San Juan Islands: Whale Watching Update

Government and Industry are Working Together to Protect

Washington’s Endangered Southern Resident Orca Whales

San Juan Islands, WA... Washington State Governor Jay Inslee’s recent recommended three-year suspension of viewing endangered Southern Resident killer whales (SRKW) will not eliminate whale and wildlife watching activities in the San Juan Islands. Southern Residents make up a small percentage of local viewing opportunities; visitors can still view the Salish Sea’s other healthy populations of whales, dolphins, porpoises, seals, sea lions and river otters on land or by sea. The San Juan Islands are still one of the best places in the world to do so.

According to a recent Seattle Times article, Inslee stated that “The whale-watch industry spends up to 85 percent of its time with customers watching other whales. We will still have a robust whale watching industry.” These other whales include Bigg’s or transient killer whales, humpbacks, grays, and minke whales.

Visitors come from all over the world to see whales and other marine wildlife in the wild and to visit Friday Harbor’s Whale Museum and many waterfront parks to educate themselves on the conservation of whales. Naturalists leading tours on the water or onshore, provide education and instill a stewardship ethic in visitors that has helped make the plight of the SRKWs a world-wide issue.

Responsible ecotourism is a critical piece of education, conservation, and the economy of the San Juan Islands. Some local ecotourism operators and NGOs are in favor of the temporary SRKW viewing suspension, while many others are in favor of alternative measures that would highly limit viewing of SRKWs under a proposed strict permit system; believing a limited group of seasoned ecotour operators would serve as educators and a deterrent to poor behavior on the part of boat owners unaware of the whales’ presence or vessel regulations around whales.

New vessel rules are just one of many proposed comprehensive measures to support SRKW recovery. Regardless of how recovery efforts unfold, visitors and locals can still view Southern Resident orca whales from shore throughout Puget Sound and the Salish Sea. Here in the San Juan Islands, orcas sometimes come quite close to the shoreline while chasing salmon through the kelp forests. For those who happen to be in the right place at the right time, they will get the thrill of a lifetime as these majestic animals glide through the water.

The San Juan Islands’ communities support the Governor’s wish to “...restore the ecosystem to one that sustains orca, salmon and the quality of life for all Washingtonians.” While Governor Inslee and the legislature work with all parties to create common sense, bold actions to protect these beloved and imperiled animals, we encourage the Washington Fish and Game Commission and the Pacific Salmon Commission to give the first allocation of Chinook salmon to the Southern Residents as a first step.

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Media Contact:

Barbara Marrett

P.O. Box 1330

Friday Harbor, WA 98250

[email protected]

(360)378-6822 ext. 6

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

October 25, 2018

Day of the Dead Remembrance

at The Whale Museum on November 2nd

Friday Harbor, WA... Please join The Whale Museum (TWM) on Friday, November 2nd, from 3:00 to 4:00 pm as TWM honors the lives and commemorates the deaths of passed Southern Resident orcas, Scarlet (J-50); Crewser (L-92); and Ophelia (L-27), including Tahlequah’s calf as well as other calves that have passed without names. Come and share your memories of departed whales who are gone but certainly not forgotten. The Whale Museum will help keep the legacies of these whales alive through its ‘Storykeeper Series’ – limited commemorative packets available in the Museum store, designed to remember those orcas who have gone before. Refreshments will be provided. 

TWM asks for your help as they prepare to honor the departed members of the Southern Resident Community. If you have any photos of past whales or special stories you would like to share, TWM welcomes them! For more information please contact TWM staff at (360) 378-4710 ext. 30.

 The November 2nd event is free and open to the public. The Whale Museum is located in Friday Harbor at 62 First St. N. Founded in 1979, The Whale Museum’s mission is to promote stewardship of whales and the Salish Sea ecosystem through education and research. In addition to providing exhibits, the Museum also provides programs including the Marine Naturalist Training, Orca Adoption Program, Soundwatch Boater Education, San Juan County Marine Mammal Stranding Network, and the Whale Hotline. The Whale Museum can be found on-line at www.whalemuseum.org.

Contact:  Tracie Merrill (360) 378-4710 ext. 23

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

October 22, 2018

Good News for Ferry Travelers: Free Parking at Anacortes Terminal

& Tips on Traveling during a Temporary Schedule

Friday Harbor, WA… Yes, Washington State Ferries is offering free parking as solace for a reduced schedule to the San Juan Islands. While planning your island getaway, you might have heard that the Washington State Ferries will be running on a reduced schedule from Oct. 22 - Nov. 4. But no worries! Here are some tips for stress-free travel to the San Juan Islands.  

  • Park your car at the Anacortes terminal and walk onto the ferry. Parking in Lot D will be FREE during this temporary schedule! The Film Festival, Eat Island Grown, and dining and lodging options are all within walking distance of the Friday Harbor ferry terminal. 
     
  • "No reservations" doesn't mean "no availability." Visit the Islands by car the old-fashioned way – first come, first served.  Arrive at the Anacortes ferry terminal early to secure a spot, and drive on. You can find the temporary schedule HERE. 
  • Come fly away! Kenmore Air is offering scheduled flights to Friday Harbor from Seattle, with a 10 percent discount for filmgoers! Also, check out the scheduled flights on Friday Harbor Seaplanes or San Juan Airlines for non-stop flights to the islands from various locations. Point-to-Point Air and Westwind Aviation also provide on-demand charter services to the San Juans from around the Pacific Northwest. Fly in style for a weekend of films, island food, and autumn views.

October 26-28, 2018 - the sixth annual Friday Harbor Film Festival – Stories from the Pacific Rim & Beyond (FHFF) (www.fhff.org), carries forward the momentum of the past five years’ successes. In addition to award-winning documentary films, several premieres, and special events, this film festival focuses on the filmmakers themselves, with Q&A sessions from every filmmaker. Paul Watson, a founder of Greenpeace, will be present to receive a lifetime achievement award. Friday night’s Gala will include a screening of the award-winning documentary “Chasing Thunder,” a thrilling high seas adventure where two captains from Sea Shepherd go on a hundred-day chase of the illegal poacher and pirate fishing vessel, the Thunder.

Also on October 28th, Eat Island Grown celebrates the Islands’ unique cuisine. The best tastes of the San Juan Islands showcasing local chefs, and the farmers that make that food possible. Come for a bite or make a meal of it!

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Please help spread the word about Savor & Film Festivals via social media

Tweet: Savor the San Juans-A fall medley of Food, Farms & Film @VisitSJIslands @FHFilmFest www.visitsanjuans.com/savor

Look for Facebook posts throughout October. Like us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/VisitSanJuans

#visitsanjuans #savorthesanjuans #sanjuanislands #FHFilmFest

 

Media Contact:

Barbara Marrett

Communications Manager

San Juan Islands Visitors Bureau

(360) 378-6822, ext. 6

[email protected]

For Immediate Release

October 16, 2018

The Holidays Shine Brighter in the San Juan Islands
Tree lightings, artisan fairs, and an Island Nutcracker bring good cheer to the San Juan Holiday Season

Friday Harbor, WA… Son of a nutcracker! Take Buddy the Elf’s advice this holiday season, and don’t be a cotton-headed ninny-muggins. Instead, escape the mainland’s mad rush and discover island time with a winter forest hike or walk on a stormy beach, a great meal fireside, and holiday spirit with friends new and old. Small-town traditions, locals greeting each other on the street, and time to reflect on what really matters; a San Juan Islands holiday will make smiling your favorite, too.

Here, Santa arrives by ship and shopping is small, not mall. Holiday gifts mean so much more when they are made by someone you know. And in the San Juan Islands, it’s easy to meet the craftspeople who create the art, crafts, foods and more. Discover their work at holiday artisan fairs, farmers' markets, and in local shops. As a mecca for artists, local galleries on San Juan, Orcas, and Lopez Islands present an array of island-made jewelry, pottery, paintings, prints, and sculpture.

From Thanksgiving through New Year’s Day, a festive lineup of Holiday Events and Specials offer plenty of ways to keep friends and families busy, from holiday plays and concerts to wine tastings and dinners, special restaurant and lodging packages and more. Three tree lighting ceremonies in Eastsound Village Green, Lopez Village, and Friday Harbor will brighten up the chilly nights with carolers, cookies, hot cider, and good cheer.

Friday Harbor/San Juan Island Events:
November 23-24San Juan Island Artisans Holiday Marketplace

December 1, Island Lights Festival

December 8, Brickworks Old-Fashioned Christmas Market

December 15-16, Salish Sea Ballet Presents Friday Harbor Nutcracker

Lopez Island Events:
November 23, Lopez Village Holiday Lighting & Gathering

November 24, Lopez Preschool Annual Holiday Bazaar

November 24, Annual Jingle Bell Dinner

December 15, Winter Solstice Concert with SeaMuse

Orcas Island Events:

November 23, Eastsound Art Walk

November 23-24, The Olga Symphony

December 1-2, Holiday Artisans Faire

December 7, Eastsound Holiday Celebration & Tree Lighting

Additional holiday events and specials, as they are added, may be found at http://www.visitsanjuans.com/holiday. Find more suggestions for a Cozy Island Holiday on our San Juan Islands Experiences section at www.visitsanjuans.com

Holiday photos may be found in Dropbox: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/fjqg44t9efw6hb8/AAAyTN2xs56DhlxASf-VixHQa?dl=0

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Media Contact:

Barbara Marrett

P.O. Box 1330

Friday Harbor, WA 98250

[email protected]

360-378-6822 ext. 6

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For Immediate Release

From the Director of San Juan Community Theatre’s Fall Play, Silent Sky

“In our troubled days, it is good to have something outside our planet, something fine and distant for comfort.” –Annie Cannon

When I was young, my father would stargaze with me. Laying in the backyard with the soft grass tickling our bare feet, we would look up. My parents told me the stories of the constellations, of Sputnik, Neil Armstrong, and the Voyager probes. Even today, looking at the stars takes me back there—to being a boy with a head full of dreams and aspirations. We have been fascinated by the stars for all of human history, and in that way, I am connected to generations upon generations of all of us who looked up. That is what I love about our fall play, Silent Sky. It’s a story about those who look up, who dream, who aspire, and who struggle against incredible odds to discover and achieve.

Based on the life of Henrietta Leavitt, Silent Sky follows the story of the women astronomers at Harvard Observatory circa 1900. Science and industry are moving forward by leaps and bounds. Women are becoming college-educated and fighting for the vote. Following her instincts and curiosity with ferocious determination, Henrietta leaves her home in Wisconsin and travels to Boston to embark on a journey that will lead her to immense discoveries about the universe…and humanity.

Please join us for Silent Sky. I love it for so many reasons—the humor, the romance, the wit, the inspiration, and the aspiration. In watching it, I return to that backyard where I lay barefoot in the grass, looking up. I hope you will, too.

Nathan Kessler-Jeffrey

 

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For Immediate Release

September 2018

Friday Harbor Film Festival is very excited to announce our 2018 Andrew V. McLaglen Lifetime Achievement Awardee; Captain Paul Watson, founder of both Greenpeace and Sea Shepherd.

Each year since 2013, the Friday Harbor Film Festival, located on beautiful San Juan Island, Washington, invites dedicated and talented Filmmakers to showcase their Documentary films unique ability to

·     Entertain audiences through the art of compelling storytelling;

·     Inspire audience members, as well as filmmakers to be a force for positive change; 

·     Enlighten all participants by conveying relevant information, creating awareness and expanding appreciation of our fragile planet, diverse cultures and those daring to explore new frontiers. 

The Film Festival will be hosted in 5 venues throughout the 3 days.  All films are shown twice. There are also special events including the favorite Filmmakers Forum.

The Lifetime Achievement Award honors a person who has made outstanding contributions to raising awareness and his or her professional excellence in the field of filmmaking and activism.  It is presented in memory of Andrew V. McLaglen, a proficient Award winning Film Director and long-time resident of San Juan Island.

This year’s coveted Andrew V. McLaglen Lifetime Achievement Award is being presented to Captain Paul Watson, a renowned marine wildlife conservation and environmental activist from Toronto, Canada.  He was one of the founding members and directors of Greenpeace, a global, independent campaigning organization that uses peaceful protest and creative communication to expose global environmental problems and promote solutions that are essential to a green and peaceful future.  

Captain Watson founded the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, an international non-profit, marine wildlife conservation organization. Its mission is to end the destruction of habitat and slaughter of wildlife in the world’s oceans in order to conserve and protect ecosystems and species by using innovative direct-action tactics.  Watson has served as Master and Commander on seven different Sea Shepherd ships since 1978 and continues to lead Sea Shepherd campaigns. Alongside his crew, he has starred in seven seasons of Animal Planet’s television series Whale Wars.

A renowned speaker, accomplished author, master mariner, and lifelong environmentalist, Captain Watson has been awarded many honors for his dedication to the oceans and to the planet.  Among the many commendations for his work, he received the Genesis Award for Lifetime Achievement in 1998, was named one of the Top 20 Environmental Heroes of the 20thCentury by Time magazine in 2000, and was inducted into the U.S. Animal Rights Hall of Fame in Washington, D.C. in 2002.  He was also awarded the Amazon Peace Prize by the President of Ecuador in 2007.  In 2012 Captain Watson became only the second person after Captain Jacques Cousteau to be awarded the Jules Verne Award, dedicated to environmentalists and adventurers.

Capt. Watson will be honored at our Opening Night Gala at the San Juan Community Theatre, Friday, Oct. 26, following by a screening of his new film Chasing the Thunder;a high-seas documentary about the eco-warriors of Sea Shepherd as they engage on an epic 110-day, 10,000-mile chase of the Thunder, a notorious poaching vessel. Wanted by Interpol and banned from fishing in the Antarctic, it had eluded capture for over a decade.  Chasing the Thunder takes the audience on an exhilarating ride to the furthest reaches of the planet as it captures the dangerous drama of the world’s longest maritime pursuit.

The exceptional aspect of the FHFF is that each Film screened hosts the filmmaker for Q & A. The Friday Harbor Film Festival is a real favorite of the filmmakers themselves, the accolades pour in after each event;  

An eager, interested audience, one that I expect will grow as the exceptional nature of the festival becomes increasingly recognized” Lucy Ostrander, Producer, Proof of Loyalty 

In the insider world of festival gems, we filmmakers agree, It’s a rare beauty.” Kevin Tomlinson, producer, Crazywise

 “The level of professionalism exceeds many larger festivals we have been at. I really appreciated being able to provide Q&A and found the caliber of the questions from the audience to be both educated and thoughtful.”  Roger Williams, Producer, River Blue

Throughout the 3 days, the audience is encouraged to vote for their favorite.  On Sunday evening our Local Hero award will be awarded to Alex Shapiro an accomplished composer, who has made a significant contribution to our community, though her musical reflections inspired by our island home. Also, the winners of each film category and the overall favorite are announced Sunday evening, followed by a final screening of the Audience Favorite. Winning films are featured in the Best of the Fest series Jan.-May.

Plan to attend the 6thannual FRIDAY HARBOR Documentary FILM FESTIVAL; Oct. 26-27-28, 2018.

FRIDAY HARBOR FILM FESTIVAL

San Juan Island, Washington

"Stories of the Pacific Rim & Beyond"
entertain-inspire-enlighten
www.fhff.org

Oct. 26 - 27- 28,  2018

 

For Immediate Release

August 30, 2018

Make the Holidays Glow with an Island Retreat
Tree lightings, artisan fairs, and an Island Nutcracker bring good cheer to the San Juan Holiday Season

Friday Harbor, WA … If the Grinch ever left Whoville, it would be to spend the holidays in the San Juan Islands. While roast beast might be hard to find, it’s a perfect time to get away from crowded parking lots and cookie-cutter chain stores. This season, celebrate with a winter forest hike or walk on a stormy beach, a great meal fireside, and holiday spirit with friends new and old.

Here, Santa arrives by ship and shopping is small, not mall. Holiday gifts mean so much more when they are made by someone you know. And in the San Juan Islands, it’s easy to meet the craftspeople who create the art, crafts, foods and more. Discover their work at holiday artisan fairs, farmers' markets, and in local shops. As a mecca for artists, local galleries on San Juan, Orcas, and Lopez Islands present an array of island-made jewelry, pottery, paintings, prints, and sculpture.

From Thanksgiving through New Year’s Day, a festive lineup of Holiday Events and Specials offer plenty of ways to keep friends and families busy, from holiday plays and concerts to wine tastings and dinners, special restaurant and lodging packages and more. Three tree lighting ceremonies in Eastsound Village Green, Lopez Village, and Friday Harbor will brighten up the chilly nights, with carolers, cookies, hot cider, and good cheer. Escape the mainland’s rush and discover island time.

Friday Harbor/San Juan Island Events 

November 23-24San Juan Island Artisans Holiday Marketplace

December 1, Island Lights Festival

December 8, Brickworks Old-Fashioned Christmas Market

December 15-16, Salish Sea Ballet Presents Friday Harbor Nutcracker

Lopez Island Events

November 23, Lopez Village Holiday Lighting & Gathering

November 24, Lopez Preschool Annual Holiday Bazaar

November 24, Annual Jingle Bell Dinner

Orcas Island Events

November 23, Eastsound Art Walk

December 1-2, Holiday Artisans Faire

December 7, Eastsound Holiday Celebration & Tree Lighting

Additional holiday events and specials, as they are added, may be found at http://www.visitsanjuans.com/holiday. Find more suggestions for a Cozy Island Holiday on our San Juan Islands Experiences section at www.visitsanjuans.com

Holiday photos may be found in Dropbox: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/fjqg44t9efw6hb8/AAAyTN2xs56DhlxASf-VixHQa?dl=0

Media Contact:

Barbara Marrett

P.O. Box 1330

Friday Harbor, WA 98250

[email protected]

360-378-6822 ext. 6

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For Immediate Release

July 11, 2018

Fall in love with Food and Film during the 11th Annual Savor the San Juans

A Medley of Food, Farms & Film, September 9th – November 10th, 2017

Friday Harbor, WA … Wines, wheat, and whales! Join us as the gourmet archipelago celebrates over a decade of great food, local farms, and independent filmmaking. Savor the San Juans has grown to encompass film festivals, farm tours, harvest dinners, workshops, a bike-and-brew and much more. Ease into a slower time of year while indulging in the culture, and natural beauty of Orcas, Lopez and San Juan Islands. Sample the artistry of chefs like Food & Wine Best New Chef Jay Blackinton on Orcas or Nick Coffey at Ursa Minor on Lopez.

Take advantage of lodging, dining and transportation specials during harvest season.

Here’s your chance to open the barn door to see behind the scenes at some of the islands’ most beautiful farms, creameries, wineries, flower gardens, shellfish farms and more. Taste Island Grown foods and wine, beer, cider, and spirits, during a selection of farm-to-table dinners by local chefs.

A sampling of events:

  • All three islands will hold special all-day farm tours that include activities such as sheep shearing demonstrations, a fermentation workshop, cider pressing, and great local snacks. The San Juan Island Farm Tour takes place on September 9th, Lopez Island on September 29th, and Orcas Island on September 30th.
  • Coho Restaurant and Doe Bay Wine Company pair up on October 12th to provide an unforgettable wine dinner featuring wines from the Orcas Projectsmall-production, limited release wines made in collaboration between acclaimed winemakers and vineyards in the Pacific Northwest.
  • The Friday Harbor Film Festival will honor Captain Paul Watson, one of the founders of Greenpeace and Sea Shepherd, with the Andrew V. McLaglen Lifetime Achievement Award during the Opening Night Gala on October 26th. The gala will include a screening of the film, Chasing the Thunder, a high-seas documentary that follows the eco-warriors as they engage on an epic chase of the notorious poaching vessel, the Thunder.
  • The 2nd Annual Hops on the Rock festival is literally shutting down the streets of Eastsound on November 10th to host a weekend of drinking, dancing and NovemBEER events all across Orcas Island. Live music, local food, and 20+ local breweries from around the region will be featured.

For more details and a complete list of events, visit www.visitsanjuans.com/savor  

Photos: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/rs6dlrbhqpyr366/AAD73Y4UIJRmvKky0P3Dwjwaa?dl=0

Help spread the word about Savor via social media: #savorthesanjuans

Look for Facebook & Twitter posts in August and through October. Don’t forget to follow us and we’ll follow you back!

Twitter: @visitSJIslands                

Like us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/VisitSanJuans

Instagram: @VisitSanJuans

Media Contact:

Barbara Marrett

Communications Manager

San Juan Islands Visitors Bureau

(360) 378-6822, ext. 6

[email protected]

 

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For Immediate Release

July 11, 2018

A Feast of Films in the San Juan Islands

Dozens of films at 2 festivals will delight cinema lovers during the 11th Annual

Savor the San Juans: A Celebration of Food, Farms & Film

San Juan Islands, Wash. … Master filmmaker Quentin Tarantino once said, “If a million people see my movie, I hope they see a million different movies.” Film lovers will have the opportunity to explore a multitude of perspectives this October in the San Juan Islands. Two unique film festivals make an autumn getaway an artistic feast, as the “gourmet archipelago” sets the table to experience the bounty of the islands at its peak from mid-September to early November.

October 4-8, 2018 - The 5th annual Orcas Island Film Festival (OIFF) (www.orcasfilmfest.com), takes place in the arts-rich village of Eastsound, and features a curated selection of critically acclaimed international films and audience favorites direct from their debuts at the world’s greatest film festivals including Cannes, Venice, Berlin, Telluride, Toronto, New York and Seattle. Many of the films are award contenders at the Oscars each year and attendees will see these films before their official theatrical release. Exciting Q&As by directors, actors, and other artists are a highlight of this intimate festival. Summer visitors can get a taste with the Summer Film Series on the Village Green in Eastsound. Contact: Sara Donnelly [email protected]

October 26-28, 2018 - On San Juan Island on the last weekend of October, the sixth annual Friday Harbor Film Festival – Stories from the Pacific Rim & Beyond (FHFF) (www.fhff.org), carries forward the momentum of the past five years’ successes. In addition to award-winning documentary films, several premieres, and special events, this film festival focuses on the filmmakers themselves, with Q&A sessions from every filmmaker. Captain Paul Watson, one of the founders of Greenpeace and Sea Shepherd and a star of the popular TV show Whale Wars, has been chosen as this year’s recipient of the FHFF Andrew V. McLaglen Lifetime Achievement Award. Captain Watson will be present on Friday, October 26th, during the Opening Night Gala to receive the award.

The gala will include a screening of the film, Chasing the Thunder, a high-seas documentary that follows the eco-warriors as they engage on an epic chase of the notorious poaching vessel, the Thunder. Several venues within an easy walking distance of the ferry terminal, airport and float plane dock, present the opportunity to discover the historic waterfront town’s galleries, museums, and shops without a car. Tickets go on sale Sept. 15, 2018. For further info about the film festival, or to purchase tickets, please go to our website www.fhff.org or write us an email at [email protected]

Lodging specials, farm tours and farmers markets on Lopez, Orcas, and San Juan Islands, and wine events are just a few of the signature events unfolding this fall during Savor the San Juans: A Celebration of Food, Farms & Film.

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Please help spread the word about Savor & Film Festivals via social media

Tweet: Savor the San Juans—A fall medley of Food, Farms & Film @VisitSJIslands @OrcasFilmFest @FHFilmFest www.visitsanjuans.com/savor

Look for Facebook posts in September and throughout October. Like us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/VisitSanJuans

#visitsanjuans #savorthesanjuans #sanjuanislands #FHFilmFest #OrcasFilmFest

Dropbox with high-resolution photos: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/2ncylhexg9k4yr6/AAC7ser8k2EP_kECrjqTakQVa?dl=0

 

Media Contact:

Barbara Marrett

Communications Manager

San Juan Islands Visitors Bureau

(360) 378-6822, ext. 6

[email protected]

 

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For Immediate Release

June 21, 2018

New Blog Shares Stories of the San Juan Islands

Farmers, Naturalists, Artists, Chefs, and other locals write about island life in new Island Stories blog

Friday Harbor, WA…  See island life from the local point of view in the San Juan Islands Visitors Bureau’s new blog, Island Stories, a collection of experiences, sustainable travel tips, and profiles of some of the farmers, artists, adventurers, naturalists, chefs, innkeepers, whale researchers and others who make up the close-knit creative communities of the San Juan Islands.

Island Stories features bloggers writing about nature, the arts, food, sustainability, travel, history and more. Here are samples of the first few posts:

  • The San Juan Islands: A Traveling Epicure’s Delight: Regina Zwilling, a nutritionist who teaches classes at the Orcas Food Co-op, talks about how to make the most of fresh island food while you travel, and how to take some of the islands’ bounty home with you.
  • 20 Years Under the Stars with Island Stage Left, staff writer Shannon Borg explores the story of one of San Juan Island’s most unique performance groups, celebrating their 20th anniversary this summer with outdoor performances of Shakespeare’s “The Tempest,” a fantastical adventure set (naturally) on a magical island.
  • The Foxes of American Camp: Naturalist Monika Wieland Shields photographs the beautiful red foxes that make the San Juan Islands their home, particularly at South Beach in American Camp, San Juan Island National Historical Park. She shares tips on how to safely and responsibly view wildlife. 

To find out more, and read the latest posts, visit www.visitsanjuans.com/blog, and sign up for our newsletter at www.visitsanjuans.com/newsletter-sign.

If you are an islander would like to write a guest blog post, contact Shannon Borg at [email protected]. We would welcome any help spreading the word about Island Stories via social media:

Instagram: @VisitSanJuans   |Twitter: @visitSJIslands   | Like us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/VisitSanJuans

#islandstories #islandstoriesblog #VisitSanJuans #sanjuanislands #orcasisland #lopezisland #sanjuanisland #fridayharbor

Look for Facebook & Twitter posts about what’s happening in the San Juan Islands. Don’t forget to follow us and we’ll follow you back. Thank you! Dropbox for photos: https://bit.ly/2K39bvp

Media Contact:

Shannon Borg

Marketing Coordinator

San Juan Islands Visitors Bureau

(360) 378-6822, ext. 7

[email protected]

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For Immediate Release

May 17, 2018

Fall Film Season in the San Juan Islands

Dozens of films at 2 festivals will delight cinema lovers during the 11th Annual

Savor the San Juans: A Celebration of Food, Farms & Film

San Juan Islands, WA. … Oscar-winning director Alejandro Iñárritu once said, “To make a film is easy; to make a good film is war. To make a very good film is a miracle.” Film lovers can experience a medley of such miracles this October in the San Juan Islands of Washington State.  Two unique film festivals make an autumn getaway an artistic feast, as the “gourmet archipelago” sets the table to experience the bounty of the islands at its peak from mid-September to early November.

October 4-8, 2018 - The 5th annual Orcas Island Film Festival (OIFF) (www.orcasfilmfest.com), takes place in the arts-rich village of Eastsound, and features a curated selection of critically acclaimed international films and audience favorites direct from their debuts at the world’s greatest film festivals including Cannes, Venice, Berlin, Telluride, Toronto, New York and Seattle. Many of the films are award contenders at the Oscars each year and attendees will see these films before their official theatrical release. Exciting Q&As by directors, actors, and other artists are a highlight of this intimate festival. The festival will showcase three short films funded by OIFF grants awarded earlier this year. Grant-winning filmmakers use the Islands as the canvas to create short inspirational works.  Contact: Sara Donnelly [email protected]

October 26-28, 2018 - On San Juan Island on the last weekend of October, the 6th annual Friday Harbor Film Festival – Stories from the Pacific Rim & Beyond (FHFF) (www.fhff.org), carries forward the momentum of the past five years’ successes. In addition to award-winning documentary films, several premieres, and special events, this film festival focuses on the filmmakers themselves, with Q&A sessions from every filmmaker. This year’s Local Hero Award will go to Alex Shapiro, an accomplished composer, who has made a significant contribution to our community through her musical reflections inspired by our island home. Several venues within an easy walking distance of the ferry terminal, airport and float plane dock, present the opportunity to discover the historic waterfront town’s galleries, museums, and shops without a car. Contact: Karen Palmer [email protected]

Lodging specials, farm tours and farmers markets on Lopez, Orcas, and San Juan Islands, and wine events are just a few of the signature events unfolding this October during Savor the San Juans: A Celebration of Food, Farms & Film.

Please help spread the word about Savor & Film Festivals via social media

Tweet: October's Savor the San Juans-A fall medley of Food, Farms & Film @VisitSJIslands @OrcasFilmFest @FHFilmFest www.visitsanjuans.com/savor

Look for Facebook posts in September and throughout October. Like us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/VisitSanJuans

#visitsanjuans #savorthesanjuans #sanjuanislands #FHFilmFest #OrcasFilmFest

Dropbox with high-resolution photos: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/2ncylhexg9k4yr6/AAC7ser8k2EP_kECrjqTakQVa?dl=0

Media Contact:

Barbara Marrett

Communications Manager

San Juan Islands Visitors Bureau

(360) 378-6822, ext. 6

[email protected]

 

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For Immediate Release

May 31, 2018

An ‘Orca-stra’ of Fun in the Salish Sea

This June, families can turn awe into action for orcas

Friday Harbor, WA… For 12 years, June has been celebrated as Orca Month in the Pacific Northwest. Orca Month is a time to celebrate the presence of the Southern Resident orcas off our coast, and inspire action to address the many threats facing them. Celebrations will be hosted throughout British Columbia, Oregon, and Washington. For the little ones, fun and learning combine at The Whale Museum in Friday Harbor, the first museum on the West Coast dedicated to the stewardship of whales.

Orca awareness events in the San Juan Islands:

  • June 9, 10 a.m. – 12 p.m.: Celebrate World Ocean’s Day by spending one hour helping our beaches! Meet at Jackson’s Beach on San Juan Island and Crescent Beach on Orcas Island.
  • June 10, 12 p.m. – 2 p.m. Whales in Your Neighborhood: Meet up with expert naturalists at local parks, like Lime Kiln Point State Park on San Juan Island, to search for and learn more about land-based whale watching and the whales who live in the Salish Sea, in particular, our endangered Southern Resident orcas. This event is hosted by Orca Network, Whale Scout and Friends of Lime Kiln Society (FOLKS).
  • June 23, 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.: Gather for an evening of music at Lime Kiln Point State Park to honor the Southern Resident orcas! Participants are encouraged to bring a picnic and enjoy the lingering sunset. Tours of the historic lighthouse will be offered before and after the concert. 

For over 40 years, the Center for Whale Research has studied the dynamic populations of J, K, and L pods, also known as the Southern Residents. They’re excited to announce the opening of the Orca Survey Outreach & Education Center in downtown Friday Harbor this summer. They aim to educate and share the knowledge gathered during years of research.  People and orcas will be brought face to face in innovative ways; including big screen video footage of the whales in the wild as experienced from their research boats and other fun and educational displays. For more information, email [email protected]

For families traveling to the San Juan Islands (www.visitsanjuans.com) this summer, Pod Nods—fun and educational sleepovers at The Whale Museum—give parents a break from the kids and vice versa while everyone vacations. Marine learning adventures include games, crafts, labs & the ever-popular flashlight tour to keep 6-11-year-olds engaged. July 13, August 10 & 24, 2018. $44 per child for members, $49 non-members. To register, call (360) 378-4710 ext.30.

A complete list of Orca Month events can be found at https://orcamonth.wordpress.com/. Don’t forget to tag us: #orcamonth #sanjuanislands

Dropbox of hi-res images: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/yrqslwap6fk0d6f/AAC5b8zrmimnuZMC0-GK5SB2a?dl=0

Twitter: @visitSJIslands  

Like us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/VisitSanJuans

Instagram: @VisitSanJuans

Media Contact:

Barbara Marrett

Communications Manager

San Juan Islands Visitors Bureau

(360) 378-6822, ext. 6

[email protected]

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For Immediate Release

March 28, 2018

Peek into San Juan Islands History: First Nations, Farmers, and Fruit

“History Lives Here” brings island stories to life in May

Friday Harbor, WA … The history of the San Juan Islands shaped Washington—literally. If history had taken a slightly different turn during the “Pig War” standoff from 1859–1872, we’d be writing this missive from Canada, not the United States. Discover this and other colorful stories during History Lives Here—National Historic Preservation Month (www.visitsanjuans.com/history-lives-here) in the San Juan Islands.

Did you know the San Juans were once the fruit basket of the Northwest? Photos of Eastsound, a new exhibit at the Orcas Island Historical Museum, marks over 120 years of change in the life and spirit of the village of Eastsound. The exhibit traces the dramatic evolution from an expanse of orchards in the 1890s to the commercial center of Orcas Island today. Visitors will have a chance to see the people, culture, and places that have made Eastsound a vibrant community in which to live, work, and visit.

In a fascinating talk, May 9, 7:30 pm at San Juan Island Library, ecologist Russel Barsh describes the world system that evolved in North America as it parallels the history of Greco-Roman Europe. His talk will also place contemporary Indigenous peoples in the context of a thousand years of struggle and change.

Hypnotized by your family history? San Juan Historical Society and Museum research volunteer Robin Jacobson shares what she has learned from some of the best trainers in the country during this free presentation: Genealogy and Local History: Research Soulmates, on May 23, 7 pm San Juan Island Library. Be a history detective with the help of Robin’s top research tips and favorite resources.

Join San Juan Island National Historical Park staff for two historical hiking tours. On Saturday, May 26, take a bite out of history with a tour of the remnant Sandwith homestead and orchard on Young Hill at English Camp. Depart English Camp parking lot at 1 pm.  On Sunday, May 27, take an in-depth look at the role the Belle Vue Sheep Farm played in the early settlement of San Juan Island. Depart American Camp Visitor Center parking lot at 1 pm.

With three historical museums and the San Juan Island National Historical Park, visitors can experience San Juan Islands history all year. Check out the interactive Museum of History and Industry in Friday Harbor and Encampment at the National Historical Park. Take a self-guided tour of Friday Harbor which has more than 150 historic sites within its walkable one-mile radius. Twenty-six of these are described in the Historic Friday Harbor on Foot Tour.

Dropbox link to photos: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/trfjd4wyngucsg8/AADVLGcsDdIHt4_xDfhQWzd2a?dl=0 Please credit San Juan Islands Visitors Bureau for photos.

History Lives Here Events: More information and other events on May’s History Lives Here and a list of historic lodging properties offering specials, may be found on the Visitors Bureau May History Page www.visitsanjuans.com/history-lives-here. For further information call 888.468.3701, ext. 1.  

Media Contact:

Barbara Marrett, Communications Manager

San Juan Islands Visitors Bureau, 360.378.6822 ext. 6 or [email protected]

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For Immediate Release

February 22, 2018

May the Forest Be With You in the San Juan Islands, Come out and Play for Earth Day!

Natural art at SJIMA, Great Islands Cleanup, & lots of fun for kids

Friday Harbor, WA … John Muir was onto something when he said, “Keep close to Nature’s heart…and break clear away, once in awhile, and climb a mountain or spend a week in the woods. Wash your spirit clean.” Did you know that April is National Volunteer Month? Spend a day (or more!) giving back to the natural places we all love during April and May—in the San Juan Islands. Work with locals to maintain trails in beautiful Moran State Park on Orcas Island, clean up a beach on San Juan, Orcas, or Lopez Islands, ride your bike in the Tour de Lopez, and then enjoy the Procession of the Species Parade in Lopez Village.

There is also a new exhibit on display at the San Juan Islands Museum of Art (SJIMA). Substrate: underlying currents is inspired by natural forms, the trio of women artists (Susan Singleton, Kandis Susol, and Hannah Alex-Glasser) from Orcas Island employ paper, wax, ceramics, and ink to bring poetic interpretations to their mutually sensitive creations.

In their own words: “We feel that particularly in today’s world, this work carries an urgently needed and important counterbalancing voice.  It is interwoven on different levels with the natural environment, using materials and processes indigenous to our beautiful Northwest area. We present this work as an embodiment of love, grief, and healing for a beautiful, pain-filled world.”

Earth Day also makes an excellent time to assess community efforts for a greener future. No more Styrofoam take-out containers? Check. No more single-use plastic bags? Check. Now for the last straw! Friends of the San Juans is teaming up with the San Juan Brewing Company to encourage businesses in our community “stop sucking” and take action to reduce waste by getting rid of plastic straws and utensils.

Other Earth Day stewardship events throughout April make a springtime visit to the San Juans not only a relaxing getaway but a great learning opportunity for families with children. Join locals for Great Island Cleanups at some of Lopez, Orcas and San Juan Islands’ most beautiful beaches.

Find out more at www.visitsanjuans.com/voluntourism-earth-day-events, along with information about quiet-season lodging, dining specials and more. Additional events and opportunities will be added to the website as available. Check out our Spring Break Packages for lodging and dining specials while volunteering.

Can’t make it in April? Check out other year-round opportunities here: https://www.visitsanjuans.com/what-to-do/experiences/volunteer-vacation- opportunities

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Dropbox file of photos for Voluntourism:
https://www.dropbox.com/sh/bbmva0cmqkc7588/AACgLBInWAUjDSE5srgtEqJYa?dl=0

Share our recent voluntourism social media posts from:

Facebook: www.facebook.com/VisitSanJuans/
Twitter: @VisitSJIslands
Instagram: @VisitSanJuans, #visitsanjuans #sanjuanislands

The San Juan Islands Visitors Bureau’s mission is to promote the San Juan Islands as a preferred, year-round travel
destination, while respecting and sustaining the Islands' unique and diverse ecosystems, environments,  lifestyles, and cultures.

Media Contact:
Barbara Marrett
San Juan Islands Visitors Bureau
(360) 378-6822 ext. 6
[email protected]

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For Immediate Release

January 4, 2018

Eat, Spray, Love: How to Plan an Epic San Juan Islands Vacation

Save the Date for National Plan Your Vacation Day this January

Friday Harbor, WA… Looking for the secret to a better balanced New Year? Take vacation time! Letting 662 million vacation days go unused is just pathetic. 51% of Americans skip the one step that could help them vacation: planning. January 30 this National Plan for Vacation Day. Whether it’s a long weekend with your friends or spring break with the family, there’s no better place for a getaway than the San Juan Islands of Washington State. Whether by ferry or floatplane, getting here is half the fun.

So save the date and join Project: Time Off on January 30 the and start planning your San Juan Islands getaway!

Eat. When the tide is out, the table is set. Farm and tide-to- table sourcing is a defining characteristic of island cuisine. From nutrient-packed kelp fronds from the Salish Sea to sweet pears from abandoned orchards and savory lavender in purple fields, the beaches, fields, and forests of Lopez, Orcas, and San Juan Islands offer up an amazing array of flavors. Foraging is an island tradition, and you can find foraged (and Island Grown™) special ingredients, from figs to quince, oysters to seaweed, sorrel to chanterelles, on the menu at several island restaurants and shops.

Spray. Experience Washington's coastal wildlife and scenery from a sensational sea-level perspective. World-class landscapes and a tranquil inland sea make the San Juans a prime kayaking spot for adventure seekers. Majestic orca (or killer) whales live in the San Juan Islands year round, and this is one of the best places in the world to see them, along with their cousins, the humpback and minke whales. Embark on a whale and wildlife tour, and discover the true meaning of awe.

Love. At its finest, vacation is about taking care of yourself. Quiet island winters are made for respite and rejuvenation. Create your own retreat by taking a yoga class, scheduling a massage or soaking in a whirlpool. There are small yoga studios throughout the islands where you can find classes, or you can practice on your own anywhere from the beach to the top of Mt. Constitution. Relax your mind and pamper your skin with body wraps, fruit peels, or a facial at one of the spas. Then you’ll be rested and ready to take on all kinds of adventure.

For more ideas to help you plan a trip to the San Juans: www.visitsanjuans.com

Share your Instagram shots with us by using our hashtags #VisitSanJuans, #sanjuanislands

Dropbox for photos: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/82quas1tcteesqb/AACfvvoZ60xqm-cj_D4pn-gra?dl=0v

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Media Contact:
Barbara Marrett
P.O. Box 1330
Friday Harbor, WA 98250
[email protected]
360-378- 6822 ext. 6

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For Immediate Release

January 10, 2017

New Orcas Island Lit Fest (OILF) brings Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award Winners to Orcas Island

Eastsound, Orcas Island ... The inaugural Orcas Island Lit Fest (OILF) festival is a celebration of literature, poetry and non-fiction writing situated on one of the most beautiful places on Earth, Orcas Island in Washington State’s scenic San Juan Islands. The event is scheduled for April 13th to 15th, 2018. Festivalgoers will have the opportunity to attend readings, panel discussions, and writers’ workshops hosted by Pulitzer Prize-winning writers, critically-acclaimed authors, and beloved regional and emerging writers.  

"An intimate world-class literary festival on one of our country's most beautiful islands." —Jule Treneer, OILF President

Participants can also attend book signings, grab a bite to eat and peruse the exhibits at the lively and interactive Book Fair at Orcas Center that runs throughout the weekend. The festival will kick off Friday night with a Lit Walk and open mic night at locations around quaint Eastsound Village.  

Saturday morning, the Kid Lit Fest will host author Thor Hanson and readings by characters in costumes. The Book Fair also opens Saturday morning at the Orcas Center for the Arts, featuring exhibits by literary journals, independent presses and featured publishers.   And, writers' workshops will be happening at various locations around the island during the morning. Two tracks of moderated panel discussions begin Saturday afternoon, featuring invited artists, thought leaders, and publishing professionals.

On Saturday evening, the Lit Fest's marquee event takes place on the Orcas Center's main stage, with readings by an award-winning lineup of invited authors. Afterward, things get a bit more raucous at the Battle of the Genres gala after party at historic Oddfellow Hall.  Sunday morning is day two of the workshop program, and more fantastic panels to attend at the Orcas Center, all of it capped off with a final closing event at the Book Fair.  

Notable highlights of the lineup for authors in attendance include National Book Award and Pulitzer Prize-winner Adam Johnson, Pulitzer Prize-winner Gilbert King and New York Times bestsellers Jami Attenberg and Robin Sloan.  Other celebrated artists include critically-acclaimed authors Victor Lavalle, Kim Fu, Urban Waite, and Willy Vlautin, and award-winning actress Miranda Otto, who will appear as part of the festival's Book-to-Film Panel.

Festival tickets are available on Eventbrite, Stranger Tickets and at www.oilf.org. OILF's Festival planners will be announcing more beloved regional poets, memoirists, and non-fiction authors in the coming days. 

About Orcas Island Lit Fest
The mission of the Orcas Island Lit Fest is to bring together people who love to read books with the authors who love to write them.  The Lit Fest is inviting a select group of authors to beautiful Orcas Island to join local and regional writers in sharing their art, wisdom, and know-how.  

For more information, visit www.oilf.org or find them on Facebook. For press assets, please email [email protected]

Contact: Jule Treneer

Skype: juletreneer

Email: [email protected]

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For Immediate Release

January 17, 2018

The Shortest International Flight In North America Takes Off!

Victoria, BC ... NorthStar Air Tours, a Canadian airline based in Victoria BC, has announced that it has received approval from the FAA and US DOT to operate scheduled air services between Victoria International Airport, BC, the San Juan Islands, and Bellingham, WA.

The carrier will begin flight operations on February 2, 2018, utilizing 9 passenger twin-engined Islander aircraft. The flights will serve both Friday Harbor, San Juan Island, and Eastsound, Orcas Island. The time between Friday Harbor and Victoria International Airport, Sidney, BC. is just 12 minutes earning its claim
as the shortest international flight in North America. Northstar is to start flying the routes during the Washington State Ferries annual winter refit shut down - January to the end of March 2018 – between Friday Harbor WA, and Sidney BC maintaining the vital connection between the two island towns throughout the winter.

Reservations will open online January 15, 2018. Early Bird Fares start from $49.00. US plus airport fees, and taxes.

CONTACT:

NorthStar Air Tours

104A Shell Aero Centre

1962 Canso Road

North Saanichton. BC, V8L 5V5

Phone: 250 800 1381

Email: [email protected].

www.northstarairtours.com