Early Summer Edition, 2018
Note: Contacts and phone numbers below are for media follow-up and may not be the best contact for consumers
Restaurants, Lodging, Shops
A Tasting Room for The Orcas Project—Doe Bay Wine Company has remodeled and refocused to provide a dedicated area in Eastsound for wine tasting and educational wine experiences. With themes like Food & Wine Pairing, Wine 101 and Boutique Producers of the Northwest, this promises to be one of the most engaging evening activities in the islands. The Orcas Project are small-production, limited release wines made in collaboration between acclaimed winemakers and vineyards in the Pacific Northwest, featuring labels designed by Orcas Island artists. These are 'get it while you can' wines. Contact Cole Sisson, [email protected]; www.doebaywinecompany.com (360) 376-7467
More Delicious Views from Friday Harbor House—The only thing that could make the views from Friday Harbor House better is more space to enjoy them. An expanded, upgraded outdoor deck at the restaurant at Friday Harbor House is on schedule to be completed this summer! The deck features comfortable seating, a fire pit, and an outdoor kitchen. With over twice as much available outdoor dining space at the restaurant, there will be plenty of room to revel in Friday Harbor House’s stunning San Juan Channel vistas and feast on Chef Jason Aldous’ delectable Northwest fare. Contact Joleen Zanuzoski, [email protected]; www.fridayharborhouse.com (206) 452-8189
ADA/Drive-up Comes to Lopez Farm Cottages & Camping—Three new year-round campsites have been added to the camping menu. The sites have their own sweet little camp building with a hot water shower, sink and flush toilet. The building exterior has a covered kitchen (microwave, coffee maker, and sink) picnic table, wood-burning fire ring and barbecue. All are designed to meet all the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act. The Farm Cottage owners offer a 50% site discount for wheelchair-bound campers to encourage handicapped guests to enjoy an easy camping experience. Morning coffee is complimentary. Sites are suitable for cars, pickup trucks with camper shells and camper vans. No trailers or RVs due to space constraints. Contact Cathie, [email protected]; www.LopezFarmCottages.com (360) 468-3555
Revamp at Roche Harbor Resort & Spa—The Roche Harbor Village is becoming more village-like every year with the recent addition of new upscale homes for rent by the resort. A new organic market garden now supplies the resort’s three restaurants with fresh, local vegetables, berries, and flowers. The historic Hotel de Haro enjoyed major renovation of the Presidential Suite (where President Theodore Roosevelt is rumored to have stayed) and Sunset Suite this winter. The majority of the hotel rooms have been refurbished and the historic miners’ cabins, condos, and McMillin Suites have all been refreshed recently as well. In April, the lovely new Courtyard Suite overlooking the Pavilion Courtyard will open. Trent Huntsman is McMillin’s Dining Room new sous chef, bringing years of experience in kitchens across the country. The new menu will provide a balance of classic dishes and iconic Northwest staples. Contact Alyssa Ostenrude, [email protected]; www.rocheharbor.com (360) 378-2155
Brunch at Ursa Minor Select Summer Sundays —You can expect a classic spread with a creative Ursa Minor twist. The preset menu possibilities may include crepes, yogurt, eggs, cured meats and pickles. Offering a creative agrarian northwest cuisine, Ursa Minor is a destination that is uniquely Lopez. Come enjoy an experience that reflects the idyllic island setting. Chef Nick Coffey works closely with local farmers, fishermen and foragers to offer a constantly evolving menu of inventive small plates, complimented by a unique list of natural wines. Contact Nova, [email protected]; http://www.ursaminorlopez.com/ (360) 622-2730
‘Thyme’ for Goats—Since 1996, Island Thyme™ has been creating botanically-based skin and body care products in small batches from their farm and apothecary studio on Orcas Island. Essential oils, wild-crafted herbs, distillate waters and natural emollients like shea butter and jojoba oil are just a few of the muses that guide their original recipes. Now a small herd of goats has arrived at the farm. Goats’ milk soap will be a silky addition to the line this spring. [email protected] www.islandthyme.com
Time to be Juanderers™—A small design studio in Olga, Washington fashions the allure of a big lifestyle brand. Starting this spring, these stylish island goods are exclusively available online. Weary travelers and loyal locals can rejoice in the convenience of scoring the perfect souvenir, or a bit of homegrown apparel, whenever and wherever they’d like. They’ve tirelessly toiled over their designs and have handpicked their apparel and merchandise. Plus, they’ve worked really hard to craft a fun and comprehensive online shopping experience. Most important: they’re on the Islands, for the Islands. They’ll split a dollar of every shirt that they sell three ways to help all islanders: whales, wildlife, and humans. Contact Scott Hale, [email protected]; https://juanderers.com/ (315) 527-4891
Tours, Concierge & Wedding Services
Salish Sea Tour Company started its tours in June. Featuring brand new, 12-person, custom Mercedes high-top vans with local tour guide/drivers. The morning tour's focus is on the Island’s scenic beauty and artists. The afternoon tour's focus is on the local food and beverage scene. Each tour highlights four to five fascinating local businesses and sites. Several times a week, an early morning photo and coffee tour will take guests from Rosario Resort & Marina up to Mount Constitution to sip coffee, eat pastries and explore the view. From learning how to shuck oysters to picking out vegetables at farm stands, each tour will focus on the highlights but also the people and ideas behind them. Space reservations [email protected]. Contact Cole Sisson, www.salishseatourco.net (360) 376-7467
The Isla Vida Group—The Isla Vida Group is a local travel & concierge company that specializes in enhancing your San Juan Islands travel experience. It is their goal to take the time to get to understand your style of travel, and then customize your itinerary to suit your tastes. Making your trip exceptional is about taking care of the details. Whether you’re a solo outdoor enthusiast, a couple seeking a romantic getaway, or on your way to wedding activities, a family vacation, business retreats and more, The Isla Vida Group is your go-to resource for stress-free travel planning. Contact Taryn Hall & Sarah Shaefer, [email protected]; www.theislavidagroup.com (800) 277-1956
Orcas Island Tours & Islands Weddings and Events—Didier Gincig has created a new tour business on Orcas Island for travelers visiting for a dream vacation, a wedding, a special event, or a family trip. A long-time islander-turned-local-guide will share the best places on the island, whether it’s in nature, in town, or even a tour of the breweries and best drinking spots. They will also help with logistics for couples who are coming to the Islands to be married. Islands Weddings and Events will coordinate a wedding venue, caterer, wedding cake, flowers, DJ, photographer, videographer, officiating services, and even help with lodging, transportation, and all that is needed for a successful wedding for all the visiting guests. Tours: Didier Gincig, [email protected] www.orcaislandtours.com Weddings: Didier Gincig, [email protected] www.islandsweddingsandevents.com (360) 298-0362
New Events, Exhibits, and Activities
Conversations with Gee’s Bend at SJIMA—On display at San Juan Islands Museum of Art from May 25th – September 3, 2018, Part II of the Museum’s 2018 theme The Female Gaze. Fifteen years ago an astounding exhibit of quilts made by women of Gee’s Bend, Alabama toured the country. These women, descendants of West African slaves, inspired artists across the country to speak through their work. Exhibiting artists in this show work in conventional and unconventional materials across a variety of media, some traditional, some unconventional. What they all have in common is a particular aesthetic, a direct response to the amazing Gee’s Bend quilts, where artists inspire artists. Contact Diane Martindale, [email protected]; www.sjima.org (360) 370-5814; Annie Adams, [email protected] (360) 378-2638
Field of Blues—The Orcas Center Summer Concert Series takes music lovers outdoors. What could be better than the landscape of Orcas Island combined with a concert of your favorite music? “Field of Blues,” in partnership with Mt. Baker Farm, is a new summer outdoor music series that celebrates a variety of musical genres that will attract music lovers across all demographics. Contact [email protected]; www.orcascenter.org/upcoming-events (360) 376-2281 ext. 4
Turn Island Wildlife Refuge Kayak Tour—Just five minutes from Friday Harbor this new half-day guided kayak trip offers a fantastic few hours of paddling, hiking, and wildlife viewing. Spend the morning exploring the secret bays and paddling the protected waters of Griffin Bay and Turn Island National Wildlife Refuge. Deep forest, quiet beaches, mountain views and plenty of wildlife highlight this half-day adventure! San Juan Kayak Expeditions has been sea kayaking here since 1980, and it shows in their knowledge of the “secret places” to go! This trip is reminiscent of sea kayaking in days past. Contact Sally Thomsen, [email protected]; www.sanjuankayak.com (360) 378-4436
Awards and Anniversaries
Good Food Award for Girl Meets Dirt—Girl Meets Dirt on Orcas Island is well known for its archipelago preserves with heirloom varietal fruits and fresh herbs. Now their new line of shrubs is gaining recognition, with the Ruby Spiced Apple Shrub winning a 2018 Good Food Award. Tart Everest crabapples are juiced and accessorized with star anise, cinnamon and black pepper for a warm spice especially suited for warm days and cold, dark rum. Contact Jessica Brinson, [email protected]; www.girlmeetsdirt.com/ (360) 375-6269
James Beard Nomination for Blackinton—Orcas Island Chef Jay Blackinton, who daringly split his locavore haven Hogstone’s Wood Oven into two restaurants last year with the advent of Aelder, is once again a semifinalist for the 2018 James Beard Award for Rising Star Chef of the Year. Aelder’s focus is on a seasonal tasting menu while Hogstone’s is an outdoor venue focused on pizza, salad, and more rustic fare. Contact Jay Blackinton, [email protected]; http://www.hogstone.com/aelder (360) 376-4647
West Beach Resort turns 80—West Beach Resort, a rustic getaway on the west side of Orcas Island, celebrates 80 years as a destination resort with a rebuilt marina and brand-new playground. Contact Jamey Hance, [email protected] www.westbeachresort.com/ (877) 937-8224
Kirk House Honored by TripAdvisor—Kirk House Bed and Breakfast in Friday Harbor has been recognized in the B&Bs and Inns category of the 2018 TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice Awards for Hotels, ranking #20 out of 25 in the United States. The 1907 Craftsman style house exudes turn-of-the-century charm and is surrounded by lovely gardens with serene seating areas. Contact Roxy Kasman, [email protected]; www.kirkhouse.net/ (360) 378-3757
New Owners as Vic’s Drive Inn turns 60—Cheeseburgers and milkshakes, a classic American combination popular since the days of poodle skirts and sock hops, are go-to menu items at Vic’s Drive Inn in Friday Harbor. Vic’s has been proudly serving the San Juan Islands since 1958. While the beloved Drive Inn (that isn’t a drive-up) has been spruced up, it hasn’t lost its 50s charm. Its where the locals go for an affordable meal and a great burger! Contact Brian Carlson, [email protected]; https://www.facebook.com/vicsdriveinn/ (360) 378-8427
Wolf Hollow Celebrates 35 Years of Wildlife Rehab—Since it was founded in 1982, Wolf Hollow Wildlife Rehab Center on San Juan Island has provided care for over 16,000 injured and orphaned wild animals, with the aim of releasing them back into the wild. Hummingbirds, swallows, woodpeckers, eagles, owls, herons, snakes, raccoons, deer and seals are just a few of the more than 200 species of wildlife that have been cared for at Wolf Hollow. Contact Amy Saxe-Eyler, [email protected]; www.wolfhollowwildlife.org (360) 378-5000
Lime Kiln Lighthouse turns 100 in 2019—Likely the most photographed object in the San Juan Islands, the photogenic lighthouse will celebrate its centennial with special events, tours, and exhibits. Located at Lime Kiln Point State Park on the west side of San Juan Island, AKA Whale Watch Park, it’s one of the best areas in the world to see orca whales from shore. https://www.sanjuanjournal.com/life/lime-kiln-lighthouse-turns-100/ Contact: Erin Corra, [email protected]; http://folkssji.org/
Dropbox link to photos: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/8f5ucjin26upc7d/AAAbuwd4Q4vPRB1JdDJnfhHRa?dl=0
Media & Communications Manager
Phone: (360) 378-6822 ext. 6
Winter Edition, 2018
For Immediate Release
January 22, 2018
Shops, Restaurants, Lodging
Lavender in Eastsound
An institution on San Juan Island, Pelindaba Lavender Farm has expanded is aromatic empire to the charming shopping district in the heart of the village of Eastsound on Orcas Island. The shop offers more than 250 products, from lotions, teas, vinegars, oils, cleaning products, pet products, all made from oil distilled from lavender grown on their farm on Wold Road on San Juan Island. The spacious new store opened on Main Street in July 2017 amidst other locally owned boutiques, galleries and restaurants, just a 15-minute drive from the Washington State Ferry Terminal. Contact: Amelia, [email protected]; www.pelindaba.com
Lakedale Resort adds yurts and activity center
Lakedale will be opening its 8 th different type of accommodation in 2018. Current options include: a cozy lodge, log cabins, Airstream trailers, canvas-sided glamping tents, canvas cottages, campsites, RV campsites, and now yurts. Each of the seven new 24-foot yurts on the shores of Fish Hook Lake will be decked out with all the amenities you’d expect from a glamping site, including a queen-size bed with pillow-top bedding and flannel duvet, a table and four chairs, a cordless lantern, bath linens, and a Toasty Toes turndown service. They also will be breaking ground on a new activity center where you can make tie-dye shirts, learn how to paddle board, paint your own birdhouse, create crazy jewelry, and take a campfire cooking class. Contact: Karl Bruno, [email protected]; www.lakedale.com
North Beach Inn restores historic Lodge
On the northern shore of Orcas Island, the North Beach Inn is a historic resort featuring quaint beachfront cabins. Its recently re-opened Lodge was built in 1932 as the original dining hall for the resort. A gracious front porch overlooks a beautiful sand and gravel beach just steps away. And, a generous fireplace, vaulted beamed ceiling, deep bay windows maintain its period charm. This distinctive building, designed in the style of an 1800s Scottish hunting lodge, features an 800-sq. ft. event venue with a commercial-sized kitchen. Along with a dozen beachfront rental cottages, the Lodge is a perfect venue for conferences, seminars, and retreats of up to 50 adults. Contact: RuthAnne Comrie, [email protected]; http://northbeachinn.com/lodge-event-venue/
Local meat now on the menu at Doe Bay Café
This year brings a big change to Orcas Island’s popular café which has gained local and national kudos for its pescatarian menu and fresh locally grown fare. "We are very excited to announce we will now feature locally raised meat on our menu," says Chef Jon Chappelle. "We will be sourcing our meat with the same set of standards that we do all of our products, utilizing only locally produced, organic, and ethically raised animals." The Doe Bay Café menu will maintain focus on produce from its one-acre onsite garden, and "vegetable-forward" cuisine. The Café is a member of Island Grown in the San Juans (http://islandgrownsj.com), which promotes locally grown products. Contact: Chef Jon Chapelle, [email protected]; www.doebay.com
Doe Bay Wine Company open
Sommelier Cole Sisson, who worked at The Bellagio Hotel in Las Vegas and at many restaurants in Seattle, grew up just down the road from the Doe Bay Resort & Retreat on Orcas Island. Sisson has returned to Orcas with his wife Stephanie, where Doe Bay Resort (and Orcas Island in general) has is now a foodie mecca. In honor of where he grew up, Sisson named his new wine shop Doe Bay Wine Company, and features a thoughtfully-curated international selection of wines, beers & ciders. The Sissons also host themed tastings, a lineup of classes and personalized, private tastings. Sisson also has created his own line of wines, the Orcas Project, for sale at the shop. Contact: Cole Sisson, [email protected]; www.doebaywinecompany.com
The Exchange on Orcas Island reopens
Recycling in the Islands is almost a religion. A new thrift shop with a long history opened on Orcas Island in late 2017. An island institution, The Exchange was a part of the transfer station, attracting locals and visitors alike in search of treasures. A fire broke out in 2013, and The Exchange burned to the ground. The resilient community persevered, and Orcas Recycling Services/The Exchange took over the San Juan County Transfer Station seven months later. Orcas Recycling Services’ goal is to be a model for sustainability, by creating a new kind of recycling, reduction, and reuse system, the new and improved Exchange is part of that goal. Contact: Pete Moe, [email protected]; http://www.exchangeorcas.org/
New Permanent Exhibits at Whale Museum
The Whale Museum becomes multi-lingual and more--Audio tours are now available in English, Spanish, German, French, Chinese, and Japanese at the museum. A new exhibit, The History of Endangered Orcas, explores over 50 years of research using historic images, audio recordings, and games. Organized by decade, each section describes major discoveries and how they changed our understanding of an animal that was feared and hated and has now become a symbol of the Pacific Northwest. The Museum’s new Challenge Wheel encourages actions to protect the marine environment. Whichever wedge you land on gives a simple action to take in your life to help endangered orcas. Contact: Rebekah Cousins, Museum Curator, [email protected], (360) 378-4710 ext. 31; www.whalemuseum.org
Planes, Trains & Bicycle Wheels
New airline finally takes off...connecting Canada and the San Juans for the shortest international flight in North America. Starting February 2, 2018, NorthStar Air Tours will offer daily flights from Sidney (near Victoria), British Columbia to Friday Harbor on San Juan Island. The nine-passenger small plane has been waiting for FAA approval, but has now received the go-ahead to fly several flights a day. It’s just a 15- minute hop between San Juan Island and Vancouver Island. It’s perfect timing, as the International ferry from Sidney B.C. to Friday Harbor, WA, takes a winter hiatus every year. www.northstarairtours.com; (888) 604-7272. Media Contact: Sophia Siegal, [email protected], (250) 800-1381
Bicycle Adventures adds trips
Bicycle Adventures, a bike touring company offering trips in the San Juan Islands, lets you choose from one-day to six-day trips. Enjoy a comfortable van ride from Seattle – take your own favorite bike or use theirs – and then beat the traffic back to Seattle on a fantastic 45-minute floatplane ride over the stunning San Juan Islands. When you land on Lake Union in Seattle, your bike will meet you there. http://bicycleadventures.com/destinations/washington-bike-tours/San-Juan...
Activities & New Events
Ride the Train at Mount Baker Farm Campground
Mount Baker Farm is a unique, private campground on 80 wooded acres just a 5-minute walk from the village of Eastsound on Orcas Island. Featuring a full-gauge railway on a 2-mile track, a huge barn, historical exhibit and a petting farm with donkeys, goats, and chickens, Mount Baker Farm is an ideal location for families. Wooded campsites are scattered throughout the back of the property, and the campground is walk-in only, so kids can play safely. The train can deliver you to your campsite or canvas glamping tent, where camp chairs, hammocks, dinnerware and butane stoves are provided. Contact: Cheryl, (360) 376-2425 [email protected]; www.mountbakerfarm.com
Writer Island Workshop with Artsmith
Spend two days in an intimate and supportive setting, and enjoy an infusion of new craft techniques and the stimulating conversation of other serious writers including Alaska writer and workshop leader, Peggy Schumacher. The Artsmith Writer Island Workshop on March 2 and 3 takes place at the historic Kangaroo House Bed & Breakfast in Eastsound on Orcas Island. Limited to twelve participants, the workshop is focused on improving the writer’s craft. Contact: Jill Johnson-McCabe, [email protected]; www.orcasartsmith.org
1st Annual Orcas Island Literary Festival
The Orcas Island Literary Festival brings together people who love to read books with the authors who love to write them. From April 13th to 15th, 2018, festival-goers will participate in dynamic panel discussions, writing workshops, a book fair, and a lit crawl featuring exciting new literary voices, including New York Times bestselling and Pulitzer-prize winning authors. A few of the participating writers include: Victor LaValle, author of the short story collection Slapboxing with Jesus, and four novels including The Changeling; Poet Kevin Clark, author of Self-Portrait with Expletives and In the Evening of No Warning; and Kim Fu, author of the novel For Today I am a Boy, winner of the Edmund White Award for Debut Fiction. Contact: Jule Treneer, [email protected]; www.oilf.org. Find their press kit, poster and more at https://oilf.org/press-media-kit/.
Lime Kiln Lighthouse turns 100 in 2019
Most likely the most photographed object in the San Juan Islands, the photogenic lighthouse will celebrate its centennial with special events, tours and exhibits. Located at Lime Kiln Point State Park on the west side of San Juan Island, AKA Whale Watch Park, it’s one of the best areas in the world to see orca whales from shore. https://www.sanjuanjournal.com/life/lime-kiln-lighthouse-turns-100/ Contact: Erin Corra, [email protected]; http://folkssji.org/
Island Shakespeare Turns 20
2018 marks the 20th anniversary of Island Stage Left theatre company, celebrating two-decades of professional theatre productions performed under the stars in the San Juan Islands. Note: additional winter, spring and fall plays and productions are performed indoors. This summer’s play is most appropriate: Shakespeare’s The Tempest—set on an island surrounded by magical creatures and summoning all the forces of nature—and will run from July 5 th through August 12th, with performances on Orcas, Shaw and Lopez Islands from July 5th through July 8th. Contact: Helen Machin-Smith, [email protected]; www.islandstageleft.org
Sleep in a little bit of Friday Harbor History
The Tucker House Inn turns 120 years old in 2018. This sweet little bed & breakfast just steps from the ferry landing in Friday Harbor was built in 1898 by Clarence and Marie Tucker. The Tuckers’ house was eventually transformed into The Tucker House, an inn welcoming visitors for almost 40 years, owned by Coho Restaurant owners Anna Maria de Freitas and Dave Pass. [email protected]; www.tuckerhouse.com
Farm-to-Fork Coho Restaurant turns 10 with a new chef
Coho Restaurant, part of the San Juan Island Inn Collection (which includes Harrison House Suites and Tucker House Inn), is pleased to announce its 10-year anniversary April 15 th 2018. Executive Chef Timothy Payne will lead Coho Restaurant into its second decade of providing farm-to- fork dining on San Juan Island. Having grown up on a farm, Chef Payne’s passion is deep-rooted. He loves cultivating relationships with farms and food purveyors who are providing the many local ingredients he showcases in his dishes. Contact: Anna Maria de Freitas, [email protected]; www.cohorestaurant.com.
Dropbox with photos:
For Immediate Release
July 14, 2017
Restaurant Evolutions, New Lodging & Marina Options
Duck Soup Drops the “Inn” & Adds Rock Star Cocktail Crafter
Formerly known as Duck Soup Inn, the acclaimed restaurant has a new menu, new chef, new management and a shorter name: it’s simply Duck Soup! The addition of a star cocktail crafter, Kari Koski, has infused the cocktail/mocktail menu with seasonal, mouth-watering beverages. San Juan Island distillery gin mixes with island-foraged fruits, herbs, spices and petals to create botanically-inspired libations. An example: strawberry basil gimlet with cracked pepper. www.ducksoupinn.com (360) 378-4878 [email protected]
Ursa Minor Restaurant, a Major Contributor to Lopez Island’s Culinary Scene
Acclaimed former Seattle chef Nick Coffey’s much anticipated restaurant, Ursa Minor, opened in April. Serving foraged and hyperlocal foods such as halibut, salal leaf and sea beans. Coffey states “The ultimate vision for Ursa Minor is to serve as a destination that is uniquely Lopez…that reflects the idyllic island setting.” Coffey will grow and gather his own food and take advantage of the abundance of local farms and fishers on Lopez. www.ursaminorlopez.com; [email protected]; (360) 622-2730
Food & Wine Best New Chef opens New Restaurant Ælder on Orcas Island
Chef Jay Blackinton one of Food & Wine magazine’s “10 Best New Chefs” for 2017 opened a new restaurant, Ælder, on Friday, July 7th in what is currently Hogstone’s dining room. Open four evenings a week, Friday—Monday, three tasting menus at 4, 7 and 12 courses will be offered using foods grown or foraged exclusively on Orcas Island. Reservations via @tockhq and the website. Follow @aelderpnw www.hogstone/aelder.com (360) 376-4647 [email protected]. Hogstone’s will be located on a newly revamped backyard area and will feature a simple menu with emphasis on vegetables from Maple Rock Farm, raw seafood and wood-fired pizza. Added shelter and warmth in the backyard will extend its season.
Downriggers Restaurant Rises from the Ashes
Past meets present as Downriggers celebrates its first summer season after reopening. A handsome new waterfront building houses the much-missed, iconic Friday Harbor restaurant after a fire destroyed the building in 2013. The spacious new interior with floor-to-ceiling windows overlooks the marina and ferry dock and offers an expanded deck for waterfront outdoor dining. Old classics chicken gorgonzola salad and fish tacos join new items like steak salad and crab tater tot appetizer. http://www.downriggerssanjuan.com. (360) 378-2700 [email protected]
Free Horse Farm’s Tipi Temptation
Free Horse Farm now has a tipi offered for farm stays. The tipi is a beautiful space with bedding and simple furnishings set on a grassy knoll amidst firs, maples and cedars. A peaceful place to rest, it’s the perfect home base for island explorations. https://www.freehorsefarm.com/ (360) 378-2968 [email protected],.
New Camping Facility at Mount Baker Farm on Orcas Includes Petting Farm & Train Rides
Located just 5 minutes from downtown Eastsound on Orcas Island, the farm is a private campground on 80 wooded acres with 30 campsites. Stress-less camping means riding the farm’s full-gauge railroad to your site and renting anything you need from tents to stoves to sleeping bags to tableware. And the kids will love the donkeys, goats and chickens. www.Mountbakerfarm.com, [email protected]
New Docks at Rosario Resort on Orcas Island
The new docks at Rosario Resort marina are open for the first summer season. The docks have a new “U” dock configuration – keeping boats away from the rocks. There are also wider slips, a wider fairway, rebuilt marina family pool and showers, and a bigger seating area at the Cascade Bay Grill so you can have a burger and a cold beverage on a sunny day. www.rosarioresort.com; [email protected]; (360) 376-2222
New Ways to Fly to the Islands & New Orcas Ferry Terminal
New Direct Scheduled Air Service between Portland and the San Juans
Albion Air started the first scheduled service between Portland and San Juan Island on Friday, June 16. A Royal Air Force-trained pilot, owner Mark Hills states, “in 27 years of flying, I have never flown a more beautiful route than the one from Portland to the San Juan Islands. I started this service because I love making this flight and wanted to share it with others.” Mark Hills (503) 925-4444 ext. 101 or [email protected]
New Airline Connects Canada and the San Juans for the Shortest International Flight in North America
NorthStar Air Tours will offer daily flights from Sidney, British Columbia to Friday Harbor on San Juan Island this summer. The nine-passenger small plane will fly several flights a day. It’s just a 15-minute hop between San Juan and Vancouver Island. www.northstarairtours.com; (888) 604-7272 Media Contact: Sophia Siegal [email protected] (250) 800-1381
Kenmore Air Fly + Stay Packages Make Getting Here Half the Fun
Whether you're looking for a weekend getaway or a longer vacation, Kenmore Air’s Fly + Stay Packages to the San Juans offer flexible fare options combined with preferred lodging and activities, including Earthbox Inn & Spa and Tucker House Inn. Info and reservations at Kenmore.com; (866) 435 9524
Orcas Island Ferry Terminal Grand Opening
Just in time for the busy summer season, Orcas Island has a new ferry terminal building. The terminal, which officially opened on July 11, replaces the former cramped waiting room and ticketing structure and adds a pedestrian pick-up and drop-off area. Located on the upper floor of the San Juan County building adjacent to the Orcas ferry dock, it’s accessible at street level and includes a ticket counter, a self-serve ticketing kiosk, and improved ADA access to new restrooms. Ian Sterling 206-714-1556, WSF media hotline, 206-402-8070
What to Do: Events, Attractions, Activities, & More
The Friday Harbor Airport Fly-In is Back
After a three-year hiatus, get up close and personal with vintage and experimental aircraft, motorcycles and more. Enjoy a fly by or two. Exhibits, open hangars, demos and food will keep the family entertained for the day. New event components include: vintage, custom and road race motorcycles plus select luxury cars on display. Event co-sponsor Kenmore air will have an aircraft display. Skagit Powersports display will include land-speed record holding motorcycles. Alta Motors will participate with a variety of and exciting demonstrations. Contact: Stuart Hansen (360) 317-8674 [email protected]
The following Sunday, August 27, from 11 to 3 pm, The Sports Car Club of the San Juan’s Concours d’Elegance auto/motorcycle show will take place at San Juan Vineyards. Over 100 intriguing vehicles will be on display including BMW, Porsche and Tesla. Contact: Phil Johnson (360) 370-5509 [email protected] www.sanjuanconcours.org
Orca Whales and Solar Eclipse Viewing Party at South Beach on San Juan Island
An Eclipse Viewing Party on August 21st from 8:30 am until noon at the San Juan Island National Historical Park will showcase a predicted 85% coverage (think a slightly skewed Oreo instead of a perfectly stacked one). Grab a free pair of viewing glasses and soak in the natural history of the National Historical Park. Look through telescopes with viewing filters, or create a solar art project. Orca whales are often spotted off Park shorelines. Beaches and bluffs provide a stunning view of the Olympic Mountains. Raena Parsons [email protected] or 360-378-2240 ext. 2222 www.nps.gov/sajh/planyourvisit/2017-solar-eclipse.htm
Savor the San Juans Celebrates 10th Anniversary
This September 22 – November 11, enjoy Savor the San Juans, a fall feast for the senses. From wine tasting to harvest dinners, farmers’ markets to farm tours, to three film festivals, more delicious details, specials and links will be added to our website as they unfold: https://www.visitsanjuans.com/savor, [email protected] (360) 378-6822 ext. 6
Pod Nods Return to The Whale Museum
Pod Nod overnight marine adventures return this summer to The Whale Museum. This popular “pajama party” sleepover is geared for children ages 6 to 11 and will be held on July 28 and August 25. Pod Nods are led by Museum Educators with assistance from other adult professionals. Youth participants will learn to value whales and their environment through art projects, science labs, games, the traditional flashlight tour of the Exhibit Hall, and a bedtime movie. www.whalemuseum.org/products/pod-nods; [email protected]; (360) 378-4710 x 30
Don’t miss TEDx San Juan Island this September
This year’s TEDx San Juan Island theme is “What’s Next,” and will include a diverse lineup of speakers presenting talks on a range of emerging issues. Register online for updates and a spot at the event. Seating is limited to 210 this year; tickets will be $45-$55, including lunch. www.TEDxSanJuanIsland.org
New San Juan County Biking Maps
Each of the San Juan Islands—Lopez, Orcas and San Juan—have very different terrain, landscapes and vistas, so it's best to get an idea of what each island is like for your level of expertise and particular interests as you plan your bicycling adventures. San Juan County has just released three comprehensive, printable maps for biking on each island. The maps show safest routes and other ways to make the most of your biking trip.
The New Omari Beauty Bar Presents: An Invigorating Maui Facial Summer Special
A new holistic day spa on Orcas Island offers rejuvenating, natural skin care treatments, including a special summer Maui Facial. This 90-minute treatment, increases circulation, stimulates collagen, plumps the skin and smells wonderful and is offered through August 31. Other facials, face and body sugaring, and bridal makeup artistry offered year-round. Omari aspires to not only treat the skin but educate clients on proper skincare routines though ingredient awareness. www.OmariBeautyBar.com; (360) 378-7638 [email protected]
Orcas Events Offers Everything for Weddings
Orcas Event Rentals has added special touches for weddings, anniversaries or other events. Brides and grooms can now rent beautiful crystal glassware, china plates, wine barrel furniture, farm tables, chairs, benches and more to make their special day even more perfect. www.orcasevents.com; (360) 376-8376 Veronica San Martin [email protected]
Wedding Officiant, Orcas Island Tour Guide
Didier Gincig, a wedding officiant on Orcas Island is now available to conduct tours of around the island for wedding couples and their guests. Didier will pick guests up from the ferry landing, so they can walk onto the ferry and have transportation taken care of. Didier can help brides, grooms and their families plan and help coordinate services for weddings, reunions, anniversaries and more. [email protected] and (360) 298-0362
New Charter Service in Friday Harbor Offers Fishing & Wildlife Photography Excursions
San Juan Island Fishing Charters is new and running from Spring Street Landing docks. It’s an intimate and fun experience, whether fishing or taking photographs and touring the beautiful San Juan Islands. Boats hold six or fewer allowing the space to fish, photograph or just decompress. July 30 -- August 1 evening photography classes will be taught by professional wildlife photographer Kelsey Tieszen www.sjifishing.com; [email protected]; (425) 205-1179
Award-winning French Camp
Canoe Island French Camp has been operating in the San Juan Islands for nearly 50 years. Just awarded Special Distinction for promoting French culture in the Pacific Northwest by the French American Chamber of Commerce, instructors teach French language and culture to 9-16 year olds during the summer. In the spring and fall, the Camp hosts school groups, Family Camp, private meetings, and holds a Yoga Benefit Weekend in May. www.canoeisland.org; [email protected]; (360) 468-2329
Dropbox for photos: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/rqmylx6lj333gar/AABiV0_dvcIbZ-EU56MMOlPLa?dl
(360) 378-6822 x 6
Spring 2017 Edition
For Immediate Release, March 22, 2017
New Restaurants, Chefs & Offerings
New Restaurant on Lopez Island
Seattle Chef Nick Coffey’s much anticipated restaurant, Ursa Minor, is slated to open this spring. Coffey’s estimable pedigree includes enlivening the vibe and menu at Café Barjot, and running the kitchen at Sitka and Spruce, both in Seattle. His website has a sample menu with hyperlocal foods such as halibut, salal leaf & sea beans. The video for his wildly successful Kickstarter campaign states, “The ultimate vision for Ursa Minor is to serve as a destination that is uniquely Lopez, where tourists can come to have an experience that reflects the idyllic island setting yet is familiar enough for locals to return again and again.” Coffey will grow and gather his own food and take advantage of the abundance of local farms and fishers on Lopez. Ursa Minor will inhabit Haven restaurant’s former Lopez Village space at 210 Lopez Road and Haven has moved to the waterfront location of the former Bay Café. http://www.ursaminorlopez.com/ (360) 622-2730
New Bar & Remodel for The Kitchen on Orcas Island
One of Orcas Island’s most popular—and tiniest—restaurants has remodeled, allowing it to better serve its customers on the enclosed patio and courtyard deck with freshly prepared, locally sourced, and organic food, using Pan-Asian flavors. A new beverage bar serves beer and cider on tap and a wide range of house-made soft drinks, root beer, ginger beer, and their famous spicy lemon ginger chai teas, and last but not least, a variety of shrubs (sipping vinegars). www.thekitchenorcas.com; [email protected]; (360) 376-6958
Orcas Island: Emerald Isle Sailing Charters New Chef
Continuing Emerald Isle's tradition of providing guests with fabulous cuisine aboard its San Juans and Inside Passage/Great Bear Rainforest cruises, a new chef, Mary Wills, arrived in Deer Harbor for the 2017 sailing season. A graduate of the French Culinary Institute in New York City, and the La Scuola Di Cucina in Parma Italy, Mary has worked under world-renowned chefs, including Anthony Bourdain and Marco Pierre White. Mary founded and ran the acclaimed Good Fork Catering in Ohio, and has been featured on multiple TV cooking shows. www.emeraldislesailing.com; [email protected]; (866) 714-6611
Brunch on the Bluff at Friday Harbor House
As one of the only restaurants on the island to offer a full breakfast and full bar at brunch seven days a week, Friday Harbor House serves up cocktails along with coffee and delectable favorites like Smashed Avocado Toast and Benton's Benedict. The new menu showcases island dining at its best for hotel guests and the locals. www.greenrubino.com/pr; [email protected]; (360) 378-8455
Girl Meets Dirt Announces New Line of Shrubs
A quintessential pantry item, the “shrub” is a concentrated fruit syrup-based drinking vinegar. Orcas Island’s beloved Italian Plums (Prune Alley, in the middle of the village of Eastsound, used to be a country lane through an orchard of Italian plum trees) shine in this deep purple, sweet and pleasingly tart concoction, which is perfect with seltzer, or splashed with your liquor of choice. The red and fruity Tomato Shrub, is an earthy syrup slightly sweet and pleasingly tart. Mixed into a Bloody Mary it's fantastic, or used as a glaze or marinade for chicken, fish, and steak. www.girlmeetsdirt.com; [email protected]; (360) 375-6269
Friday Harbor Brew House
Friday Harbor Brew House is an eclectic nano-brewery located in a boat repair shop on a back street in Friday Harbor on San Juan Island. These dedicated beer lovers produce very small batches of craft beer served only in the Brew House tasting room, and are open at the owners' whim, for a truly local experience. They serve light snacks, but visitors should feel free to bring their own food. www.fridayharborbrewhouse.com; [email protected]; (360) 378-6205
Hogstone’s Wood Oven Gains 3rd James Beard Award Nomination
Chef Jay Blackinton is, for the third year in a row, a semi-finalist for the James Beard Rising Star Chef Award. Hogstone’s, celebrating a 5th anniversary, will be expanding its Eastsound Village outdoor dining area. The backyard space will continue to focus on the pizza and vegetable dishes that are Hogstone’s trademark, as well as adding shelter and warmth to extend the season. The indoor dining room will concentrate on the tasting menu, ranging anywhere from 4 to 12 courses. New equipment, new website, and a new greenhouse are all on the horizon. www.hogstone.com; [email protected]
Lodging & Transportation
New Lodging Overlooking Friday Harbor
The Cannery Inn is a charming new bungalow lodging located a few blocks up from the ferry landing. Just footsteps away from the Whale Museum this newly built, cozy and modern unit sports four rooms and epic views of Friday Harbor. http://site-284503-796-7059.strikingly.com; [email protected]; (360) 378-2070
Roche Harbor Resort & Spa
Voted year-after-year as a best in the Northwest destination wedding venue, Roche Harbor Resort is transforming and expanding its well-loved Pavilion event space. The white look and white chairs have been replaced by wooden vineyard chairs and tan cushions, new rugs and drapery offset the opened-up waterfront and garden views. Capacity has increased from 170 to 225 with the ability to create new break out spaces for meeting versatility. A larger bar, additional lighting and air conditioning complete the picture. All of this comes on the heels of refreshing and upgrading the historic, circa 1886, Hotel de Haro last year, and upgrading the interiors of the historic miners’ cabins this year. Both retain budget friendly lodging rates despite the upgrades. New privately owned luxury village homes have also been added to Roche’s rental pool www.rocheharbor.com; Alyssa Ostenrude [email protected] (360) 298-1566
Register ahead for Moran State Park’s LEANTO Glamping Travel Kit
Glampers who book their LEANTO™ Moran State park glamping site at least two weeks before their scheduled arrival date and purchase the Digital Detox Entertainment Center kit—which includes a card game, Mad Libs book, a journal to record wilderness wonder, a Moran State Park jigsaw puzzle, a hiking map, and folding binoculars in a drawstring tote—will have the option to ship the kit straight to their doorstep! This way guests ditch the digital distraction before check-in and might even finish the puzzle on the ferry. www.stayleanto.com; [email protected]; (360) 298-1684
Friday Harbor House offers an intimate setting to relax, sample authentic island cuisine by acclaimed chef Jason Aldous, and enjoy San Juan Island activities. The Babymoon package at Friday Harbor House provides some much-needed TLC for the soon-to-be parents, and includes a 2-night stay romantic stay, 2 60-minute massages at Lavendera Day Spa, and $25 gift certificates to Osito’s toy store. Guests can look forward to sipping on sparkling cider while relaxing in a jetted tub, amongst other goodies. www.greenrubino.com/pr; [email protected]; (206) 452-8177
Snazzy New Rental Cars
Imagine zipping around the San Juan Islands in a new Smart Car, convertible or electric car. M&W Auto has some cool new car rentals, including some fun specialty cars such as PT Cruiser convertibles and more. Walk on the ferry or arrive by plane or boat, M&W has wheels for you. www.sanjuanauto.com; [email protected]; (360) 378-2886
Events, Attractions, Activities, Shopping & more
ARRRR you going to the 1st Annual Pirate Festival in Friday Harbor?
Rub shoulders with pirates and scalawags at the Port of Friday Harbor’s 1st Annual Pirate Festival over the weekend of June 23—25, 2017. Climb aboard the classic sailing vessel featured in the movie Pirates of the Caribbean, the Lady Washington, and enjoy food, games, music, vessel tours, local sails & more! www.portfridayharbor.org; [email protected]; (360) 378-2688
Orcas Island Chamber Music Festival’s 20th Season
This summer, the Orcas Island Chamber Music Festival runs from Saturday, August 5th through Sunday, August 20th. The 20th season includes the return of many Festival favorite artists, and rising star violinist Benjamin Beilman will join the Festival for the first time. Look for romantic works by Franz Schubert throughout the program, a new work for saw and string quartet by Jake Heggie, and a free Concert on the Green on Sunday, August 13, featuring Jon Kimura Parker and the “OICMF Stage Band” performing Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue. Tickets go on sale at 5:00 p.m. May 2nd. www.oicmg.org; [email protected]; (360) 376-6636
New section at San Juan Islands Sculpture Park
The Salon Des Refusés (Exhibition of Rejects) contained what is now considered some of the best work of impressionist painters in fin-de-siècle Paris. The exhibit was in reaction to the ban of impressionistic work from the national exhibition. In 2017, the San Juan Islands Sculpture Park is introducing a version of the Paris salon, called Le Jardin des Refusés. It will contain, in a separate area, the sculptures not chosen for exhibition by the credentialed jury of qualified art critics who accept or reject sculptures displayed in the remainder of the 20-acre outdoor sculpture park on San Juan Island. www.sjisculpturepark.com; [email protected]; (360) 370-0035
New 6-Day Bicycle Adventures
Bicycle Adventures offers a new 6-day San Juan Island Bike Tour which ends with a scenic flight with Kenmore Air from Lopez Island to Seattle, and accommodation changes with 3 nights at the Lakedale Resort, and 2 nights at The Edenwild Boutique Inn on Lopez Island. www.bicycleadventures.com; [email protected]; (800) 443-6060
Friday Harbor Bike-n-Brew
The first annual Friday Harbor Bike-n-Brew rally is Saturday September 23, 2017. This Lion’s Club benefit event brings together visitors with local islanders on a fun biking tour of the island followed by an evening of relaxing and microbrew-tasting. After a hearty breakfast at the Fairgrounds on Saturday morning, approximately 200 bicyclists will have a choice of three routes around the island with varying difficulty levels. www.fridayharborbike-n-brew.org; [email protected]; Committee Chair Steve Brandli, (360) 378-9419
Jones Island Day Tripper
Hike, lunch, then enjoy foraged seafood for dinner! Join Captain Hobbes on a little adventure to Jones Island Marine State Park. Depart Friday Harbor at 10:00 am, drop a couple of crab or prawn pots, then hop off at Jones Island. Hike along waterfront trails, or relax and enjoy (self-provided) lunch at one of the many picnic sites. Pick up your pots on the return trip at 4:00 (or camp for a night, for pick you up the next day). Once back, cook up your bounty right at the dock or take it home with you. Cost is $99 per person. Or, purchase this package exclusively through the Friday Harbor House, www.fridayharborhouse.com, and the chef will prepare your bounty for dinner that night! www.sanjuanislandwhales.com. 360-298-0012.
Friday Harbor Film Festival Taking its Show on the Road
The first event will be at the Explorer’s Club in New York City, April 1. Video trailer: https://youtu.be/Mm9Eo8hgkds. A selection of the “Best of the Fest” films from its 2016 Film Festival will be screened. Each will be followed with 15-20 minutes of Q & A, either with the filmmaker or an expert on the subject of the film. Tickets: [email protected]. Call for Submissions for Film Festival Young Filmmakers Project is now open: http://www.fhff.org/call-submissions-young-filmmakers-project/. Theme for 2017 Friday Harbor Film Festival is Pacific Connections. Jessica Lansfield [email protected] (360) 298-1939
New Boat in the Whale Watching Fleet
Outer Island Expeditions, headquartered on Orcas Island, will add a new boat to its fleet of whale watching vessels this year. The Blackfish IV will be a 46-foot long, high-speed aluminum catamaran, carrying 50 passengers to view whales and wildlife around the San Juan Islands. This ultra-quiet vessel is among the fastest whale watching vessels in the region. www.outerislandx.com; [email protected]; (360) 376-3711
Weddings, Honeymoons & Special Getaways
San Juan Shindigs
San Juan Island now has its own full service event rental and coordination company, providing creative and meaningful products and coordination services to help make your event beautifully unique and stress-free. Locally owned and operated in Friday Harbor, San Juan Shindigs serves all of the San Juan Islands. They offer everything from dishes to dance floors and lanterns to lawn games. Pictures and prices for all rentals in one easy place: www.sanjuanshindigs.com; [email protected]; (360) 317-6610
Wedding Officiant and Planning Service in One
Wedding officiant Didier Gincig is offering a new service as wedding consultant and wedding planner, including day-of coordination. Whether you choose a small elopement on the top of Mount Constitution, a large wedding in Roche Harbor, or a medium sized wedding at the Victorian Valley Chapel, you may want some help with transportation logistics, lodging, wedding vendors, and even local insider tips on what you and your guests can enjoy during while in the San Juans. www.orcasweddingsofficiant.com; (360) 298-0362
Dropbox of New & Cool photos: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/4vqivs1i7omhdzn/AADq_MPjrrSNX3tcSS-cHBVza?dl=0
Communications & Stewardship Manager
San Juan Islands Visitors Bureau
Lopez, Orcas & San Juan Islands
P.O. Box 1330, Friday Harbor, WA 98250
VisitSanJuans.com 360.378.3277 ext. 6
Late Summer & Fall Edition
For Immediate Release: August 31, 2016
Arts & Culture
New Totem Pole Dedicated for 100th Anniversary of the National Park Service
Members of Lummi Nation and Saanich Nation gathered with other local tribes to dedicate two Coast Salish salmon story boards and a totem pole depicting a reef net captain, at the San Juan Island National Historical Parks Centennial Anniversary celebration on August 25. The pole honors the native peoples who have lived in the Islands for thousands of years and is the first public acknowledgement of their presence in our National Historical Park. Contact: Jeremy Ripin, National Park Service, (360) 378-2240; [email protected]; http://bit.ly/2boIwMh
Fall Film Season in the San Juan Islands
This fall, three young festivals are establishing the San Juan Islands as a cinema-lover’s paradise for fall film watching. Each festival—the Orcas Island Film Festival and the Wild & Scenic Film Festival, both on Orcas Island, and the Friday Harbor Film Festival on San Juan Island—celebrates a sense of place and our connection to nature.
October 7-10, 2016 - The 3rd annual Orcas Island Film Festival - Off the Edge (OIFF) www.orcasfilmfest.com, takes place in the arts-rich village of Eastsound.
November 4-6, 2015- On San Juan Island on the 1st weekend in November, the fourth annual Friday Harbor Film Festival – Stories from the Pacific Rim & Beyond www.fhff.org, offers over 30 documental film, several premieres and Q & A with filmmakers.
November 12, 2015 - The 4rd-annual one-day Wild & Scenic Film Festival at Orcas Center features short films made by change makers that are rethinking how we inhabit our planet.
New Sculpture Garden at the Orcas Island Artworks
Stone, metal and wood sculptures by some of Orcas Island’s many talented sculptors now grace the gardens at the historic 1938 strawberry-barreling plant turned artists’ co-op, Orcas Island Artworks. Seven pieces by B.J. Arnold, David Haslett, Todd Spalti and Pete Welty greet visitors on their way into the Artworks, where another 45 artists display their work. Contact: (360)376-4408; [email protected]; www.orcasartworks.com
New Mural Art in Friday Harbor
New murals grace walls in the Town of Friday Harbor. The Whale Museum’s www.whalemuseum.org southeast wall is now an underwater scene with several orca whales swimming through a kelp forest. The mural, “For the Orcas,” was painted by Juneau, Alaska artist Lindsay Carron. In Sunken Park, just two blocks away and just steps from the ferry terminal, Kirkland artist Jake Wagoner’s mural “Witness the Beauty” depicts a huge Cedar Waxwing with a berry in its beak. Contact: Barbara Marrett, (360) 378-6822 x6; [email protected]
Dynamic Olympic Cauldron Created by Orcas Island Sculptor
Kinetic sculpture artist Anthony Howe created the sculpture to serve as the cauldron holding the Olympic flame at the Summer Games in Rio de Janiero, Brazil. Howe’s sculptures are monumental, stainless-steel mobiles with parts that move with the wind, or in this case the wind created by the flame. The 40-foot in diameter, two-ton cauldron symbolizes the sun and was lit at the opening ceremony on August 5th. Contact: SuperNova Integrated Marketing Communications, Rob Novickas, (206) 484-5605; [email protected]; http://bit.ly/2aYEWIi Video of cauldron and flame: https://business.facebook.com/PensarEnlouquece/videos/10154791877405139/
1st Annual Salish Sea Seafood Festival
Attendees at the 1st Annual Salish Sea Festival www.visitsanjuans.com/savor, October 15 at Rosario Resort on Orcas Island, will enjoy workshops on seaweed and sushi, taste delicious fresh seafood, take part in a hatchery tour and sustainable shellfish farm tour. Educational activities focused on the Salish Sea marine food system will also engage attendees. The festival is the first of its kind, bringing together seafood lovers with inspiring speakers and panels, as well as information about the local traditions, history and challenges of shellfish and seafood production in San Juan County. Contact: Barbara Marrett, (360) 378-6822; [email protected]; http://www.visitsanjuans.com/events/salish-sea-festival
New Offerings at Westcott Bay Shellfish and Trails to Tide Pathway
Westcott Bay Shellfish added an elegant new oyster “shed” and office this summer. Owners Andrea and Erik Anderson have added picnic tables where you can relax, BYOB (beer & wine) and shuck and slurp some of the Islands’ finest oysters after a hike from English Camp in the San Juan Island National Historical Park. The new, approximately 1-mile-long, trail connects English Camp and Westcott Bay through beautiful forest trails and another 2-mile trail curves along the water around Griffin Bay. Park contact: Jeremy Ripin, (360) 378-2240; [email protected]; www.sanjuanislandtrails.org/trailsw/english-camp. Westcott Bay contact: Andrea Anderson 360-378-2489 [email protected] http://www.westcottbayshellfish.com/
Savor the San Juans This Fall
Farm Tours on Lopez, Orcas and San Juan Islands are better than ever this year, with dozens of farms open, starting with brunches made by local chefs from locally raised ingredients, an evening party at an Orcas Island farm with a beer garden, wood-fired pizza oven and music. Other events in October include, farmers’ markets brimming with the autumn’s harvest, wine dinners and more. Lodging and dining specials also make an enticing reason to visit in fall. http://www.visitsanjuans.com/savor-san-juans
Outdoor & Adventure
Walk on Water with the New Pedal Drive Paddleboard
The pedal-drive stand up paddleboard takes standup paddle boarding (SUP) to a whole new level. Unique to Hobie and Friday Harbor Kayaks, you can ‘Step On and Go!’ from the docks located in the Port of Friday Harbor just a few blocks from the ferry landing. Within minutes you can enjoy the beauty and quiet of the island, exploring the undeveloped shores of the UW Labs Biological Preserve, where eagles, seals and marine wildlife can be seen and enjoyed. Contact: (360) 378-6202; [email protected]; www.fridayharbormarine.com
Guided Kayak Fishing
Now you can enjoy a day of adventure by kayak as local guides takes you out to help you safely navigate some of the best fishing spots in the Puget Sound. Whether it is your nerves about catching a big fish in a little boat or you just don't have the gear to try it, Friday Harbor Kayaking Fishing will make it easy to have a great time. Tours last 6-7 hours, using Hobie Pro Angler 12s and 14s, fully loaded with Lowrance fish finders, outriggers, rod holders and more. Call for pricing and reservations. Contact: (360) 378-6202; [email protected]; www.fridayharbormarine.com
Orcas Trail Rides Celebrates 10 Years in Moran State Park
Robert and Jo Boone, owners of Orcas Trail Rides, are celebrating a decade of leading rides on their beautiful horses through the stunning old-growth forest of Moran State Park. Rides go anywhere from one-and-a-half to three-and-a-half hours, the longer ride going up to the top of Mt. Pickett for sweeping views of the islands. Contact: Robert & Jo Boone, (360) 376-2134; [email protected]; www.orcastrailrides.com
Flying Through History
Aero Classic Aviation in Friday Harbor offers a new way to experience the San Juan Islands, with a ride in an open-cockpit biplane built in 1929. This fully restored Waco is available for single or couples for an unforgettable adventure, with flights over Speiden, Stuart and San Juan Island, including sweeping views of the Lime Kiln Point Lighthouse. Contact: Lou Coleman, (360) 317-6276; [email protected]; www.aeroclassicaviation.com
San Juan Safaris Whale Watch & Wildlife Tours Opens New Office and Riptide Café
San Juan Safaris’ new Friday Harbor waterfront office opened in mid-July on the Friday Harbor waterfront. Rent bikes, schedule a whale watching trip, or sea kayak tour or buy custom designed clothing and Northwest products. At the Riptide Café, you can enjoy premium roast coffee and espresso from Stumptown Coffee Roasters, fresh baked goods, soups, and boxed lunches. Contact: Brian Goodremont, (800) 877-0739; [email protected]; www.sanjuansafaris.com
New Businesses & Activities
Golden Anniversary Party for San Juan Island National Historical Park
The San Juan Island National Historical Park will celebrate its 50th Birthday on September 9 with an evening of events including: A Bat Talk ‘n Walk, Cake, Owl Prowl ‘n Stargazing Party at the English Camp Unit near the barracks area 7:00 p.m. to midnight. Contact: Lowell Jons, (360) 378-4953; [email protected]; https://www.nps.gov/sajh/getinvolved/upload/Centennial-Events-Calendar-2016.pdf https://www.nps.gov/sajh/index.htm
TEDx: What do a biologist, a sexologist, a composer and an entrepreneur have in common?
TEDxSanJuanIsland is returning on Saturday September 17th, with the theme “Quality of Life.” Featured speakers at the forefront of fields such as science, health, technology, art and social justice will present ideas that influence the wellbeing of groups or individuals and discuss how these insights lead to new projects, perspectives and innovations. The conference will be an all-day event. Tickets are available online only (no sales at the door). Contact: Megan Mulhall, [email protected] http://www.tedxsanjuanisland.com/
Lakedale Adds Electrified Glamping Tents with Bathrooms en Suite
With the success of Lakedale Resort’s popular canvas-sided glamping tents, the resort has added six new waterfront canvas cottages, available May through September. Each of the new cabins has an electric chandelier and bathroom, with a toilet, sink and shower. Complete with pillow-top beds, linens and Lakedale’s signature Toasty Toes turndown service, a stay includes complimentary continental breakfast in the Mess Tent. Contact: Jonathan Cruz, (206) 452-8188; [email protected] www.lakedaleresort.com
New Work Spaces Help Visitors Stay Connected
Two new work spaces in Eastsound—76 Co-working Space and Isle Work—offer high-speed internet, meeting rooms, printing services and audio visual capabilities for a few hours or several days. Visitors who need to work for just a few hours a day, or have a Skype or face-to-face meeting can get their work done quickly in a professional setting, then get back to the important business at hand of having an amazing, relaxing vacation in the San Juan Islands. Contact: 376 Group, 596 Main St., Eastsound;
360-376-6093; Donna Riordan and Sarah Cooper, [email protected] ; http://376group.com. Isle Work, information coming soon.
Friday Harbor School of Massage Open
Lavendera Massage announces the opening of the new Friday Harbor School of Massage, a state approved school for training new massage therapists. Friday Harbor School of Massage will begin fall term in September with the program completion in mid-April. At least six of the instructors at the school will be local massage therapists. Contact: Richard Davenport, (360) 376-3637; [email protected]; www.lavenderamassage.com
Photo file via Dropbox: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/kubkrfwdppe1g5u/AACZtnxa0QWke9RiEO1aLfgna?dl=0
Link to Release:
Communications & Stewardship Manager
San Juan Islands Visitors Bureau
Lopez, Orcas & San Juan Islands
P.O. Box 1330, Friday Harbor, WA 98250
VisitSanJuans.com 360.378.3277 ext. 6
Spring 2016 Edition
For Immediate Release: May 20, 2016
Find photos to accompany news - Dropbox: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/lvgqsvki80sl4pw/AABZnwXlpmtaQi7iMUlWSaR0a?dl=0
A New App for Exploring the San Juan Islands
The San Juan Islands Insider app rewards you for exploring the islands. Visit island attractions, earn points and redeem them for valuable goods and services at select island businesses. www.sanjuanislandsinsider.com
Extended Ending date for Ansel Adams, Ernest H. Brooks II, and Dorothy Kerper Monnelly Exhibit
Fragile Waters, a traveling fine art photography exhibition of 117 black-and-white images by the world’s top environmental photographers, ending date has been extended to Labor Day, September 5 at the San Juan Islands Museum of Art. Initial closing had been in July. Contact: Barbara Cox, 360-378-1028, [email protected], www.sjima.org
Friday Harbor Jolly Trolley
A new way of travelling in Friday Harbor offers spectacular San Juan Island views from an old-fashioned authentic trolley. State of the art audio/video system helps educate visitors to island history, culture and wildlife. $20 all-day pass for adults. $10 all-day pass for kids 10 and under. Enjoy the Hop on/Hop off feature for the entire day of your ticket is valid. www.fridayharborjollytrolley.com
New Vessel Sails from Bellingham
San Juan Cruises has a new addition to its fleet of vessels based in Bellingham, WA. The 72-foot vessel, Chinook, is currently being prepared for the 2016 summer operating season. Purchased from Alaska’s Kenai Fjords Tours, the vessel will be used for multi-day group tours, private charters and a new half-day whale watching tour in and around Bellingham and the San Juan Islands. www.whales.com
New Hike into History
Explore San Juan Island’s rich Native American and European history on a guided hiking tour with local historian and author Mike Vouri. Formerly the Chief Interpretive Officer at the San Juan Island National Historical Park, Mike is a retired 21-year veteran of the NPS. Follow trails through beautiful prairie shorelines, old-growth forest, and hilltops on two tour options. Northern tour explores the history of English Camp and the British exploration and occupation of the Island. The Southern tour, explores the grounds of the historic American Camp and South Beach. www.discoveryseakayak.com
Visitors Love Mount Grant Preserve
What do visitors say about the new 121-acre preserve? “Wow!” The Preserve, located in the heart of San Juan Island, is open daily to walkers. The summit provides a 360-degree panoramic view. The road to the top will be open this summer on Sundays May 8th, May 29th, June 19th and Sundays July 3rd through September 25th from 12:00 AM to 6:00 PM. Donations to permanently secure and steward the Preserve are encouraged. Call the San Juan Preservation Trust office for more information and brochures 360-378-2461 or on-line at http://sjpt.org/mountgrant/.
Passport into History
The Passport, created by the Orcas, Lopez and San Juan Islands historical societies, offers a reward as an incentive to learn about each island's captivating history. Visit a museum on each island in 2016 to be eligible to enter a drawing for a getaway for two. Passports are available at any of the four participating museums: The Crow Valley School and Orcas Island Historical Museum on Orcas Island, the Lopez Island Historical Society and Museum, and the San Juan Island Historical Museum. https://www.orcasmuseums.org/passport-into-history.html
New Land and Sea Multi-Sport Adventures
San Juan Island Whale and Wildlife Tours adds hiking on remote islands and lunch to its signature wildlife cruise adventure. The onboard naturalist will help spot wildlife and teach about the Islands’ rich ecosystem, then continue the tour on a remote marine state park island. Unlock the mysteries of these island destinations which are only available by boat. Booking now at www.sanjuanislandwhales.com or by phone at 360-370-5696.
San Juan Kayak Expeditions
For those wanting a shorter kayaking experience, the new three-hour Griffin Bay tours deliver. Guided three-hour tour and sunset tours explore the hidden coves and tranquil waters of protected Griffin Bay. Although just one mile south of Friday Harbor, Griffin Bay is a world away, offering peace and quiet and superb views of glacier-covered Mt. Baker and the Olympic Mountain range. www.sanjuankayak.com
San Juan Safaris Whale Watch & Wildlife Tours Creates an Adventure Hub
San Juan Safaris’ new Friday Harbor waterfront office will welcome visitors starting in July. Rent bikes, schedule a whale watch or sea kayak tour all in one modern location. Just steps from the ferry terminal, the Hub boasts a new retail space with custom designed hats and t-shirts, performance clothing, and local island and Northwest products. Also, new waterfront café featuring premium roast coffee and espresso from Stumptown Coffee Roasters, fresh baked goods, soups, and boxed lunches will complete the Hub’s offerings.
A new professionally guided 3-Hour Wildlife Tour by Sea Kayak from will depart from the hub in Friday Harbor, recreation kayaks and stand-up paddle boards rentals will allow you to sip lattes while cruisin’ the scenic and historic Friday Harbor. Just steps from the ferry terminal, the departure location is convenient for visitors traveling without a vehicle or short on time. www.SanJuanSafaris.com.
San Juan Safaris’ newest vessel, the M/V Kestrel is a new fast zodiac-style vessel with seating for 26 and a comfortable restroom. The layout allows guests to freely move around the vessel when watching wildlife. Mustang suits provided for this fun and high energy adventure!
Strawberry Series features Maine food artist, tours, talks in Olga through June 18
For a sweet taste of old-time island life, spring’s “Strawberry Series,” is a celebration highlighting the legacy of Olga’s Strawberry Barreling Plant and the rare berries that made it possible. The historic building is home to the Orcas Island Artworks, Catkin Café and the James Hardman Gallery. Organized by the Olga Strawberry Council. Visitors can pick up a map and take a fun, self-guided tour of Olga and beyond that includes “strawberry points of interest.” Contact Madie Murray; [email protected] www.olgastrawberrycouncil.org
Black Fish Whale & Wildlife Tours ... and Cafe
San Juan Island’s newly-established Black Fish Whale & Wildlife Tours, a subsidiary of San Juan Island Whale & Wildlife Tours, is now offering 12-passenger eco-tours aboard Tokitae (pronounced Toe-key-tay), a 34’ aluminum express cruiser leaving daily from Spring Street Landing in downtown Friday Harbor. Daily cruises include three to four-hour whale and wildlife tours, “magic hours” evening adult-only cruises featuring wine and beer, and water taxi service.
Black Fish Tours’ will be opening a new office/café on the waterfront at Spring Street Landing in July. The Black Fish Café will feature coffees, juices, crepes, pastries, soups, sandwiches and more, which will morph into a seafood raw bar in the afternoon-evening. The sister Black Fish Bistro, at 140A First Street, also opens in July. www.sanjuanislandwhales.com.
Doe Bay Spruce Up
Doe Bay Resort’s soaking tubs and Serenity Gardens are beloved by many and utilized by both resort guests and locals. This winter its soaking tubs were converted to a salt-water system which almost eliminates the need for chlorine, as a sanitizer. In addition, the sauna, restroom and changing rooms received a facelift. Yoga classes and massages complete the holistic offerings. https://doebay.com/amenities/soaking-tubs-and-sauna/
New Sea Plane Flights to Friday Harbor
Northwest Seaplanes offers three flights daily to/from Friday Harbor departing from their South Lake Washington (Renton Municipal Airport) location beginning May 13th through September 25th. Fares are $139 per adult each way; $109 each way for children under 12. They also offer a complimentary shuttle service to and from Sea-Tac International Airport. In addition, 20-minute $99 Seaplane Tours from the Friday Harbor seaplane dock will be offered every Thursday-Sunday at 1:10 p.m. www.fridayharborseaplanes.com
Snug Harbor Resort has finished its final four new cabins. One single bedroom cabin and three two bedroom cabins. The two bedroom cabins are the largest yet with 850 square feet, featuring king beds, a large living area, and full kitchen. Also just completed, the new exercise area is located in a stand-alone building with a commanding view of Mitchell Bay while you are working out. www.snugharbor.com
New Website! Island Wedding Photography by Robert S. Harrison
The San Juan Islands are a top destination wedding location. Lopez photographer Robert Harrison just launched a new website featuring the latest wedding photographs from the San Juan Islands and a blog with local insights and recommendations. Find him at [email protected] www.islandweddingphoto.com
Full-Day Sailing Tours on Historic Schooner
New at Schooners North, the historic schooner Spike Africa will be sailing full day 8-hour wildlife quests. Enjoying the San Juan Islands from the deck of a beautiful Schooner gives a special perspective on this lovely area of the Salish Sea. Spike’s cruises share the waters with whales, porpoise, seals and sea lions, otters and a plethora of sea birds. Learn about them and their habitat from onboard naturalists. Relax and enjoy the natural beauty and breathtaking scenery, or take part in running the ship. www.sanjuansailcharter.com
New Restaurants & Chefs
Black Fish Bistro
(not to be confused with Black Fish Café on the waterfront mentioned above)
This trendy new restaurant and martini bar will open in July in downtown Friday Harbor. The Black Fish will feature locally-sourced seafood and gourmet foods with a rustic French flair including thin-crust pizzas, salads, sandwiches, a signature soup, and more. The owner’s small, organic farm will supply fruits and vegetables for a true farm-to-table experience. Upstairs, the bar will feature a long list of martini’s currently not available on the island, local beer, spirits, and an extensive wine list. Oysters on the half shell with a glass of Pouilly-Fuissé anyone? 360-298-0012 www.sanjuanislandwhales.com, [email protected]
The dynamic food culture of the islands is growing and ever-changing. Executive Chef Raymond Southern will lead the staff at The Mansion, Rosario Resort & Retreat. www.rosarioresort.com
Friday Harbor House and the Bluff: New Taste and Look
A new executive chef, Jason Aldous, will be creating a new menu at The Bluff Restaurant which is currently undergoing renovations and will reopen June 15. The Bluff will feature new bar space with breathtaking views from the highest point of downtown Friday Harbor. Seattle-based Zena Design Group is overseeing the redesign www.fridayharborhouse.com.
West Sound Café will open for the 2016 season re-energized by new chef Dirul Shamsid-Deen. After training at the Western Culinary Institute (Le Cordon Bleu) in Portland, Ore., the Los Angeles native came to Orcas Island in 2001 to intern at the Inn at Ship Bay. He is introducing a new dinner menu that puts more emphasis on small plates. www.westsoundcafe.com
Lakedale Resort unveils new canvas cottages and 2016 Gourmet Glamping Chef Series. Join top Pacific Northwest chefs for two nights of gourmet campfire cookouts. Stay in one of the six new canvas cottages. www.lakedale.com 800-617-2267. Media contact: [email protected]
The newly remodeled Hotel de Haro at Roche Harbor Resort celebrates 130 years of continuous lodging in May with lodging specials and garden walks. Check out the new John Wayne suite, complete with the extra-long tub John used when visiting the resort www.rocheharbor.com.
National Park Anniversaries—Local and Nationwide
This summer, the National Park Service celebrates its 100th Birthday. Locally, the San Juan Island National Historical Park will celebrate its 50th Birthday on September 9 with a stargazing party: https://www.nps.gov/sajh/getinvolved/upload/Centennial-Events-Calendar-2016.pdf And, reenactors from the Pacific Northwest and Canada will once again celebrate peace as they gather for the 17th Annual Encampment on July 29-31. https://www.nps.gov/sajh/index.htm
25th Anniversary San Juan Island Artist’s Studio Tour
The 25th Anniversary San Juan Island Artist’s Studio Tour is June 3rd, 4th and 5th. This annual self-guided tour leads participants down hidden drives and into private workshops. See artists’ studios for paintings, ceramics, glass, jewelry, photography, sculpture, printing and fiber art. Maps and brochures available at www.sanjuanislandartists.com and at many Friday Harbor, San Juan Island businesses.
Kenmore Air, the largest seaplane operator in the country is celebrating 70 years of flying the Pacific Northwest from its north Lake Washington shoreline base. www.kenmoreair.com
San Juan island Historical Society and Museum turns 50 this year. Tour the historic King Farm House, county jail and two of the exhibit halls in the fledgling Museum of History and Industry. www.sjmuseum.org or 360-378-3949.
San Juan County Land Bank turns 25. The only real-estate funded land bank in Washington State, preserves in perpetuity areas in the county that have environmental, agricultural, aesthetic, cultural, scientific, historic, scenic or low-intensity recreational value and protects existing and future sources of potable water. www.sjclandbank.org
San Juan Islands Visitors Bureau
Lopez, Orcas & San Juan Islands
PO Box 1330, Friday Harbor, WA 98250
VisitSanJuans.com 360.378.3277 ext. 6
Winter 2016 Edition
For Immediate Release: February 1, 2016
Ai Weiwei at San Juan Islands Museum of Art
The San Juan Islands Museum of Art (SJIMA) presents an exhibition of work by Ai Weiwei, one of the most influential artists and most closely followed dissident political voices in the world. Ai Weiwei: Fault Line, curated by SJIMA curator Ian Boyden and on display at IMA from January 23 – April 11, 2016, presents three pieces from his ongoing investigation into the 2008 Wenchuan earthquake, a magnitude 8.0 quake that killed over 60,000 people including 5,196 schoolchildren in Sichuan province, China. This is one of the first museum exhibitions of Ai Weiwei’s work in the Pacific Northwest. Selected prints by Francisco Goya and a site specific installation by Dana Lynn Louis are also currently on display. Contact: Barbara Cox, [email protected], 360-378-1028 www.sjima.org
Baby Boom good news for Salish Sea Resident Orcas
Nine babies have been born in the last 13 months to the Southern Resident killer whales (SRKW) after a two-year hiatus in births. Only once before, in 1977, were nine babies born to the group. While good news for the endangered orcas, whose numbers had dropped to 76 recently and now stand at 84, orcas are still challenged for survival in the Salish Sea. The first year survival rate for calves is approximately 50 percent. The Southern Residents range from Southeast Alaska to central California and generally spend summers around the San Juan Islands of Washington State. Population numbers are approximately 17 percent below their recent peak population of 98 whales recorded in 1995. Contact: The Whale Museum, 360-378-4710 ext. 26, Jenny Atkinson [email protected].
National report ranks the San Juan Islands tops in healthy lifestyle
Natural beauty, outdoor adventure and relaxation really are the best medicine. In a recent national study, residents of San Juan County were ranked number one regarding their quality of life, factoring in mental and physical health. The obesity rate in adults in San Juan County is 18 percent, compared to 27 percent throughout the state. Only 13 percent of San Juan County residents report that they aren't physically active, the state's percentage was 18 percent. Washington was ranked ninth healthiest among all 50 states. The study was conducted by Washington Department of Health and United Health Foundation. Contact: Toni Williams, 301-652-1558, [email protected]; www.countyhealthrankings.org
San Juan Island National Historical Park celebrates 50 years as the U.S. National Park Service turns 100
The San Juan Island National Historical Park turns 50 in 2016, as the National Park Service hits the century mark. The park comprises two camps - American Camp at the southern tip of San Juan Island, and English Camp on the North end. The fascinating history of the park includes the Pig War conflict, a peacefully arbitrated territorial dispute between the United States and Great Britain from 1859 to 1872. The conflict ensued when an American citizen shot a Hudson Bay Company pig as it rooted in his potato patch. After a 12-year joint occupation, arbitration by Kaiser Wilhelm I decided in favor of the Americans. The park offers miles of hiking, biking and horseback riding trails; beach, forest and prairie walks; interpretive centers; wildlife and wildflower viewing. Special programs are being planned to commemorate both anniversaries. Contact: Doug Halsey, (360) 378-2240, ext. 2228, [email protected], http://www.nps.gov/sajh/planyourvisit/index.htm
Ansel Adams, Ernest H. Brooks II, and Dorothy Kerper Monnelly photography exhibit at SJIMA
Fragile Waters, a traveling fine art photography exhibition of 117 black-and-white images opens Saturday, April 23 and will run through July 18, 2016 at the San Juan Islands Museum of Art. In technique and time, the careers of Ansel Adams, Ernest H. Brooks II and Dorothy Kerper Monnelly span a century and communicate the beauty and vitality of water, focusing on nature and engage the viewer in affirming the intrinsic aesthetic, emotional and essential life value of water. (For full release scroll down: http://www.visitsanjuans.com/press-releases-2015) Contact: Barbara Cox, 360-378-1028, [email protected], www.sjima.org
New website features historic barns of the San Juan Islands
The barns of San Juan County are a visual testimony to the rich history of island farming. Some of the largest structures in the islands, they literally stand out in the landscape. In age, the earliest examples date from the mid-1860s, some of the oldest surviving barns in Washington State. A new website is a great resource for history and farming buffs, offering the background, family stories and architectural details of these agricultural wonders. Contact: Boyd Pratt, [email protected]; www.historicbarnssanjuanislands.com
Friday Harbor Brickwork’s new mascot
Local sculptor Matthew Gray Palmer, whose monumental sculptures can be found all over the U.S. in National Parks and zoos, donated a public sculpture created especially for Brickworks Plaza, the much loved community facility and home to the San Juan Island Farmers Market. The pig, with a donation slot on its back, functions as a huge piggy-bank. It also links the Island’s local agriculture with the history of the famous Pig War. Gray-Palmer said, “I made a connection with the Three Little Pigs. She looks like she is made of bricks, and the last and only remaining house in the story was also made of bricks. I like the metaphor of sustainability, which is what the Ag Guild and our local organic farms are all about.” Contact: Amy Plant, [email protected]; www.fhbrickworks.com
San Juan Islands Made collaborates with Island Grown
Many people see the San Juan Islands as a vacation destination, but the island community thrives on commerce, light-industrial production, agriculture, the arts and cottage industry manufacturing. A new brand designation, “San Juan Islands Made” helps to establish and protect the integrity and value of locally manufactured, crafted, fished and timbered goods. San Juan Islands Made is joining forces with Island Grown in the San Juans, which certifies organic agricultural products grown in San Juan County. Both brand initiatives help support San Juan County farmers, artisans and other producers with labels, a website and marketing tools to help get their products to broader markets and grow the economy of the San Juan Islands. Contact: Amy Plant, [email protected]; www.fhbrickworks.com, www.sanjuanislandsmade.com, www.islandgrownsj.com
Blossom Grocery Grows on Lopez
When Blossom Grocery relocates to a newly renovated space in Lopez Village opening February 4, 2016, it will mark the largest expansion in the natural foods retailer's 38-year history. Blossom's new space at 295 Village Road will occupy 3,300 square feet in an old lumber company warehouse. The new store will feature natural day lighting, energy-efficient heating and refrigeration, wider aisles, more office and workspace, and improved accessibility. "This space has been designed and built with real people in mind," said co-owner Brian Kvistad. "Our hope is that everyone--customers, employees, even delivery drivers--will enjoy being in it." Contact: Josh Ratza, 360-468-2204, [email protected]; www.blossomgrocery.com
New Public Lands to Explore
Mount Grant Preserve Acquisition
San Juan Island’s new 141-acre preserve located between Mt. Dallas and Cady Mountain gives public access to the ridgeline and surrounding hillsides of Mount Grant. The land’s diverse forest, rocky balds and stunning views at the summit, made it an easy decision to save from development. A partnership between the San Juan County Land Bank, San Juan Preservation Trust and public has allowed the purchase. A road leading to the summit is open daily for pedestrian and non-motorized use. Driving access to the top for winter 2016 is 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. both on President’s Day Weekend, Feb. 14 -- 15, and Easter Weekend March 26 -- 27. Contact: Tanya Williamson, 360-378-4402, [email protected] www.sjclandbank.org
Zylstra Lake Acquisition
Just shy of ringing in the New Year, The San Juan Preservation Trust and the San Juan County Land Bank reached an agreement to purchase another stunning property, the 313-acre Zylstra Lake property in San Juan Valley on San Juan Island. Located just three miles west of the Town of Friday Harbor, property includes the 52-acre Zylstra Lake, a second 9-acre lake, and more than 200 acres of open pastures and productive farmland with sweeping views over San Juan Valley. While there is strong potential for recreation, the property will open to public access after additional funding is secured and the management plan is approved. Contact: Tanya Williamson, 360-378-4402, [email protected], www.sjclandbank.org
Summer 2015 Edition
May 22, 2015
New sculpture garden at Orcas Center
The Orcas Center performance hall will unveil a new 12-piece sculpture garden at its Annual Gala and Auction on July 18, 2015. The 12 new pieces, 7 of which are by renowned Orcas Island kinetic sculptor Anthony Howe, will be dotted around the center’s grounds. Howe’s “Snow Spirits” were the featured display for Barney’s Madison Avenue holiday display window in 2014. The Orcas sculpture park will join the 20-acre San Juan Islands Sculpture Park, near Roche Harbor on San Juan Island, to further herald the Islands as a Mecca for arts lovers. The Washington State Arts Commission considers the San Juans an artistic “hot spot” due to the number of galleries and artists earning a living here. www.orcascenter.org, www.howeart.net Contact: Kara O'Toole, Executive/Artistic Director, [email protected]; Orcas Center (360) 376-2281 ext. 3
New this Summer! “Save a Spot” reservations take the guesswork out of ferry travel
Reserved travel by vehicle to the San Juan Islands began in January and this is the first summer to test the new reservations system. The system has proved so popular that WSF had to make adjustments to a tiered release of summer reservations to handle the volume of customers wishing to make reservations two months or more in advance http://1.usa.gov/1DcUV8y. Reservations may be made online www.takeaferry.com or by calling 1-888-808-7977. A small amount of non-reserved spots may be open to those without reservations on the day of travel. Reservation holders should arrive at least 45-60 minutes in advance of sailing. Contact: [email protected].
Welcome aboard, Samish! New Olympic Class ferry joins WSF fleet
The brand new, 144-car Samish is set to officially take its place amid Washington state’s world-class ferry system. Following two months of sea trials and crew training, the new ferry will begin service on the Anacortes/San Juan Islands route Sunday, June 14, just in time for the start of the summer sailing season. http://www.dot.wa.gov/News/2015/04/Samish_041015.htm photos: https://www.flickr.com/photos/wsdot/sets/72157627905126905/
Orcas Island Artworks returns home to Olga
Rising like a Phoenix from the ashes, Orcas Island Artworks re-opened on April 25th, marking a "whole new beginning” for the center, damaged by fire in 2013. This artists' co-op in the hamlet of Olga is celebrating its 35th season—now 45 artists strong—back in the 1938 strawberry barreling plant it calls home. The Catkin Café will take the place of Café Olga, which will stay in Eastsound. James Hardman Gallery will also open in its former home, upstairs in the loft. See a slideshow of the transformation after the fire at http://www.olgastrawberrycouncil.org/ Contact: James Hardman, 360-376- 4588, [email protected]
Bikers4Orcas plan to ride to save Lolita – New Event
In June 28, 2015, the San Juan Island chapter of Bikers4Orcas will hold a full-day motorcycle event to heighten awareness of the plight of orca whales in captivity, specifically Lolita, a member of the endangered Southern Resident killer whales that inhabit the waters of the Salish Sea. Start off with a pancake breakfast, followed by a scenic ride around the island, end at Lime Kiln Point State Park (a.k.a. Whale Watch Park). www.sjibikers4orcas.wordpress.com Contact: Patti Wickham. (360) 317-6886 [email protected]
Wonders of the Sea at Islands Museum of Art – May 23–August 21
Islands Museum of Art follows up its inaugural show with “Spineless: Portraits of Marine Invertebrates, the Backbone of Life,” featuring the engaging underwater images of San Francisco photographer Susan Middleton, who spent time at the UW Friday Harbor Labs taking pictures of “colorful, quirky, quivery, spindly, spiky, sticky, stretchy, squishy, slithery” invertebrates such as jellyfish and octopuses. The show, the second for the new Islands Museum of Art, housed in an ultra-mod new space, recently transformed from a former EMS ambulance barn in Friday Harbor is just minutes from the ferry. www.sjima.org Media Contact: Rebecca Parks, (360) 370-5177 [email protected]
The Butterfly Boutique celebrates colorful wings
In fifth-grade, Audrey Jill Hancock found a monarch butterfly pupae under her mailbox, and set in motion her life’s work. She now lives on Lopez Island and has a butterfly boutique and a non-profit dedicated to the conservation of the monarch butterfly. Her shop features butterfly-related art, jewelry and more. Hancock teaches classes all around the country about butterflies and their importance in our ecosystem. www.thebutterflylady.org Contact: Audrey Jill Hancock, (360) 296-1453
Maya's Westside Whale Watching and Legacy Charters merge
Maya's Westside Whale Watching and Legacy Charters are now operating as one company - Maya's Legacy Whale Watching. They continue to offer exceptional small group tours departing from Snug Harbor Resort on the west side of San Juan Island. Captain Jim Maya will be at the helm of the Peregrine as usual. Captain Spencer will continue aboard the Legacy, until June when the delivery of his new purpose-built vessel, combining the ultimate in passenger comfort & visibility, innovative technologies and environmental responsibility, is expected. www.sanjuanislandwhalewatch.com Contact: Rachel Domico, (360) 378-3744, [email protected]
Grand Opening of “The Friday Harbor Grand” Inn
Opening June 1, the new “Grand” located in the heart of Friday Harbor on San Juan Island offers spacious, well-appointed suites with vaulted ceilings, kitchenettes, soaking tubs, large private decks and excellent views. Recitals on the Steinway grand piano and delicious daily breakfasts are provided by well-known chef, innkeeper and musician, Farhad Ghatan. This circa 1880 residence of San Juan County’s first judge has been newly and dramatically remodeled into something grand. www.fridayharborgrand.com Contact: Farhad Ghatan [email protected]
New Farm Stay on Lopez Island
Midnight’s Farm is a diverse 100-acre farm, bustling with cattle, pigs, ducks, dogs and cats. The Field House farm stay offers the chance to relax into the land, eat real food and get your hands dirty on the farm. This sunny two bedroom house overlooking a pond is available to rent year-round. During your stay, you may wake to the scent of fresh wild-yeast-leavened bread baking from Barn Owl Bakery’s wood-fired bake house, take a yoga class at Down Dog Studio, or just sip coffee and visit the animals. www.midnightsfarm.com Contact: Faith Van De Putte, [email protected]
Snug Harbor Resort spruces up
For Summer of 2015 Snug Harbor Resort will release their final four new cabins culminating a 4 year redevelopment of the entire resort resulting in 20 new cabins and all new guest facilities. With free guest amenities that include several kayaks and paddle boards, guests will have one of the best selections of accommodations and amenities offered anywhere on San Juan Island. Also new for 2015 is an events room for up to 50 guests located right on the waterfront, with a large fireplace, a small kitchen and a great view of the harbor. www.snugresort.com www.facebook.com/snugresort Contact: Erik Nelson, (360) 378-4762, [email protected]
Far North Café to occupy historic house in Friday Harbor
One of the most intricately decorated Victorian homes in Friday Harbor, San Juan Island, this majestic building overlooking the ferry terminal was built for the manager of the Friday Harbor Packing Company in 1905, and is the last physical reminder of the once great salmon cannery that stood on the harbor. The main space has been occupied by The Doctor’s Office Café for years, and is now being taken over by Eric Bienenstock, the owner of the nearby Bean Café. The Far North Café will open in May to serve up espresso, sandwiches and sweets. A great place to have a snack and wait for the ferry, the old porch is a gathering place with a view, just as it was when it was first built more than a century ago. www.thebeancafe.com Contact: Eric Bienenstock, 360-378-5858, [email protected],
Cynthia’s set to open for breakfast and lunch in Friday Harbor
One of San Juan Island’s best caterers, Cynthia Burke of Cynthia’s Of Course Catering, has just opened her first brick-and-mortar restaurant called Cynthia's. A cheerful new breakfast and lunch place in Friday Harbor, Cynthia’s offers a choice of relaxed dining service as well as a take-out espresso deli area. The restaurant seats 30 indoors with outdoor seating in the warmer months. Enjoy skillet baked eggs, Dutch babies, paninis, fresh made soup and more. Sample the full espresso bar, smoothies, juices & a variety of savory and sweet items perfect for a picnic or taking on the ferry. www.cynthiasofcourse.com Contact: Cynthia Burke, 360-317-7178, [email protected]
Spring 2015 Edition
With new businesses, new lodgings and exciting new events, this summer in the San Juan Islands will be better than ever!
Now online! Washington State Ferry “Save a Spot” reservations take the guesswork out of ferry travel
Reserved travel by vehicle to the San Juan Islands began in January and is running smoothly as WSF continues to refine the process. Reservations may we made online www.takeaferry.com or by calling 1-888-808-7977. Spots are released in blocks at intervals of two months, two weeks and two days. A small amount of non-reserved spots may be open to those without reservations on the day of travel. Reservation holders should arrive at least 45-60 minutes in advance of sailing. [email protected] [email protected]
Glamping at Moran State Park on Orcas Island
Wanderlust Camps will be helping adventurous travelers take the easy way out this summer with five fully outfitted glamping (glamour camping) sites in Moran State Park on Orcas Island starting Memorial Day Weekend. Learn more about camping redefined at www.wanderlustcamps.com/holiday/moran-state-park-camping, [email protected]
Some new packages and tours to peruse…
Kayak trip specials from Crystal Seas
3- to 6-Day Budget Kayak Inn Tours http://www.crystalseas.com/cs-sj-tour-kayak-inntoinn-budget.htm
3- to 6-Day Budget Multi-Sport Tours. http://www.crystalseas.com/cs-sj-tour-multiday-kayak-bicycle-inn-budget.htm. [email protected], www.crystalseas.com
New 5-Day “ultimate” kayak adventure & Whale Ho! half day tours from San Juan Kayak Expeditions
The 5-day Ultimate Sea Kayak Adventure offers picturesque campsites with natural spring hot-tubing and fire-side cuisine. Paddle responsibly near whales, sea lions, seals, porpoise, bald eagles, otters and more. [email protected], www.sanjuankayak.com
See other popular kayak offerings including bioluminesce tours, gourmet tours, micro brew tours, farm-to-kayak and more: http://www.visitsanjuans.com/what-to-do/san-juan-islands-kayaking
Mindful Spring Cleaning Retreat - March 20-22, 2015
Spend a weekend away not only physically cleansing, but also learning how food impacts
all realms of your life. Enjoy a 3-day juice cleanse, gently moving through yoga sessions and meditations, and nutritional counseling to impact your relationship with your food and your body.
Yoga & Kayak Retreat - June 12-14, 2015
Connect to nature while sea kayaking, (professionally guided by Discovery Sea Kayaks), and flow through your yoga practice. Practice yoga in the B&B's parlor and paddle to shore to practice on the beach. Both retreats are led by Emily Kasman, Seattle Yoga Instructor & Holistic Health Counselor. During both retreats participants will enjoy the coziness of the Kirk House Bed & Breakfast, on San Juan Island. www.kirkhouse.net, [email protected]
What should you expect on a Babymoon?
At Tucker House Inn and Harrison House Inns in Friday Harbor, expectant mothers can enjoy two-nights’ stay, and satisfy late-night cravings with the Inn’s Craving Menu, a massage for two, a $50 certificate towards dinner at Coho Restaurant, a candlelight in-room breakfast, extended check-out time, and an orca whale onesie for the new little one. www.tuckerhouse.com, [email protected]
Openings, New Events, Accolades and Anniversaries
Islands Museum of Art Grand Opening
The stunning new Islands Museum of Art (IMA) inaugural show, Illuminated: Glass work by William Morris, 1998 – 2013, opens February 14 and runs through May 12. It will feature the hauntingly beautiful sculptures of world-renowned artist and Pilchuck Glass School instructor William Morris, who will be in attendance at the opening. www.sjima.org Media Contact: 360 370 5177 [email protected] Museum photos: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/kgd9pupoxkj8rml/AADOmSZ2QboeS9wqAd9qI5coa?dl=0
Photos of William Morris Glass: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/qbh3s44f4yxmqtd/AACkpiQLRx7b8_HMohUHPJ2Ma?dl=0
Grand Opening of “The Friday Harbor Grand” inn
|Opening June 1, the new “Grand” located in the heart of Friday Harbor on San Juan Island offers spacious, well-appointed suites with vaulted ceilings, kitchenettes, soaking tubs, large private decks and excellent views. Recitals on the Steinway grand piano and delicious daily breakfasts are provided by well-known chef, innkeeper and musician, Farhad Ghatan. This circa 1880 residence of San Juan County’s first judge has been newly and dramatically remodeled into something grand. http://www.fridayharborgrand.com/ Contact: Farhad Ghatan [email protected]
Bikers4Orcas plan to ride to save Lolita
On June 28, 2015, the San Juan Island chapter of Bikers4Orcas will hold a full-day motorcycle event to heighten awareness of the plight of orca whales in captivity, specifically Lolita, a member of the endangered Southern Resident killer whales that inhabit the waters of the Salish Sea. Start off with a pancake breakfast, followed by a scenic ride around the island, end at Lime Kiln Point State Park (a.k.a. Whale Watch Park). Contact: Patti Wickham [email protected] www.bikers4orcas.com
The Port “gets a little work done” for its 65th birthday
The Port of Friday Harbor has given itself more than a facelift for its 65th birthday! A four million dollar marina reconstruction project built new state-of-the-art docks in 105 slips of the 460-slip marina. Next door, the crumbling breakwater at Spring Street Landing is being completely rebuilt. And, an associated walkway at the water’s edge and new Spring Street Landing building, featuring expanded waterfront dining and wildlife tour businesses, will be completed in the summer of 2016. www.portfridayharbor.org, [email protected]
The Orcas Food Co-op celebrates first year of local flavor
Seventeen farms from Orcas, Lopez, San Juan, and Shaw Islands supply the almost 200 different types of local crops, including 43 varieties of apples, not to mention other locally made foods such as wood-fired oven-baked bread, locally roasted coffees, and other products such as lotions, soaps and a full-service deli serving homemade soups, sandwiches and more served at the co-op. www.orcasfood.coop
Beach Haven Resort celebrates 75 years of relaxation
The first log cabins were constructed in the late 1930s from trees milled on the property. Since 1940 guests have enjoyed the comfort of their own log cabin on a private beach.
Online at www.beach-haven.com
Kudos for local liquid arts
In the past year, island brewers, winemakers and distillers have been garnering praise from various tasting competitions around the country:
Lopez Island Vineyards and Winery won a second place award in the SIP NW Magazine Wine Awards for their 2012 Siegerrebe, and numerous silver and bronze awards at Washington State Wine Competition and others for their Madeleine Angevine, Siegerrebe, Sangiovese, Cabernet Sauvignon and Dry Rosé. www.lopezislandwinery.com
San Juan Vineyards received four double gold medals for their 2013 Siegerrebe white wine at the Washington Wine Competition, Great Northwest Wine Competition, Riverside International Wine Competition, and the Wine Press Northwest Platinum Awards. Wine Press Northwest magazine’s, Dan Berger writes: “One more reason to pay attention to the results would be the utterly fabulous 2013 San Juan Vineyards Siegerrebe from Puget Sound…A wine not to be missed.” www.sanjuanvineyards.com
Island Hoppin’ Brewery received the People's Choice Award at the Anacortes Octoberfest (Biers on the Pier) October 2014 for the Old Madrona Imperial Red. They also received 3rd place out of 60 IPAs statewide at the Beveridge Place Pub (West Seattle) month long Hop-toberfest competition (Georgetown's Lucille IPA and Bale Breaker's IPA were 1st & 2nd). www.islandhoppinbrewery.com
San Juan Distillery & Westcott Bay Cider has been stacking up awards for years, including a silver medal for their Spy Hop Gin in 2013 from the American Distilling Institute. The Apple Eau de Vie received gold at the Great Lakes Cider and Perry competition and a bronze at the American Distilling Institute judging in 2011. They have a few new specialty spirits, as well, including the tasty, already-mixed Red Sky at Night cocktail, with Spy Hop Gin, Lavender and Wild Rose Liqueur and Westcott Bay Cider Syrup. www.sanjuandistillery.com
Orcas Island Distillery opened in November; there is no tasting room as of yet, but you can find their products in local shops and restaurants. [email protected]
Late Summer/ Fall Edition - 2014
Visit our online calendar for all events: www.VisitSanJuans.com/events
Updated August 28, 2014
October 1 – 31 - Savor the San Juans: A Month-long Medley of Farms, Food & Arts
Throughout October, all three main islands – Lopez, Orcas and San Juan – will be hopping with new and favorite harvest-season events, including wine dinners, farm tours, cooking classes, Artstock and Oktoberfest, a fall farm parade and chili cook-off, and more. Find a full list of events, lodging specials at www.visitsanjuans.com/savor.
October 10-13, 2014 - The first annual Orcas Island Film Festival - Off the Edge (OIFF) (www.orcasfilmfest.com), takes place in the arts-rich village of Eastsound and beyond including the Orcas Center, Sea View Theater and the Music Room at the historic Rosario Mansion. The festival will focus on films of the avant-garde, art house, trans-media and emerging edge film culture from around the world; featuring the most progressive directors, stories, techniques and ideas. Wishing to draw on the experience of professionals, OIFF is working with the Seattle International Film Festival (SIFF). SIFF is recognized as one of the top film festivals in North America. Contact: Shannon Borg, [email protected].
October 26 - New Bite of San Juan Islands brings chefs and farmers together
San Juan Island Cheese and Island Grown present a new tasting event like no other in the islands on Sunday, October 26, 1-4 p.m. Taste the bounty of the islands at this gathering showcasing the amazing quality of farmers, food producers and chefs in the San Juan Islands. Local chefs will partner with farmers and food producers to create tasty bites featuring island grown/produced ingredients including cheeses, meats, produce and seafood. Guests will taste and purchase these delicious locally produced foods as well as island-made wine, beer, cider and beverages. Contact: Richard Daly, [email protected]; www.sjicheese.com.
November 7 - 9, 2014 - On San Juan Island, the second annual Friday Harbor Film Festival – Stories from the Pacific Rim(www.fhff.org), carries forward the momentum of an impressively successful inaugural event last year. In addition to award-winning documentary films; commentary/Q & A periods with the filmmakers and a new Young Filmmakers Project will enrich and engage participants of all ages. Four venues within easy walking distance of the ferry terminal and each other present the opportunity to discover the waterfront town’s galleries, museums and shops without needing a car. Films that: “Entertain – Inspire – Enlighten” viewers about the cultures and environment of the Pacific Rim and at least two premier screenings, are planned. Contact: Karen Palmer, [email protected].
New Shops on Orcas: Orcas Woodshop brings the forest home
Ezra and Lila Richardson have set up a woodsy, open-air shop in the heart of Eastsound, selling Ezra’s hand-hewn tables, benches, stools and picnic boards, all made from 100 percent salvaged Orcas wood, milled on the island. Lila had the idea after she was discouraged when looking for kids’ furniture that wasn’t made of particle board or used toxic finishes. She asked her husband to help, and realized there may be others with the same desires for beautiful, natural furniture with a sense of place. Orcas Woodshop joins other new additions to Eastsound, including Springboard (360-298-2975), a boutique with local and imported artisan clothing and jewelry; Monkey Puzzle (360-376-2275) beads and jewelry curated by artist Sallie Bell. Orcas Woodshop (360-376-9700) is open Thursday- Monday; other shops’ information can be found at www.orcasislandchamber.com.
New book on hiking makes the San Juans accessible
Hiker, kayaker, outdoorsman – and writer – Craig Romano knows his hikes. He’s compiled a complete collection of the best day hikes in the islands in his new book Day Hiking: The San Juans and Gulf Islands, out from Mountaineers Books this past spring. Romano features hikes on all four ferry served islands – Lopez, Orcas, Shaw and San Juan – as well as several of the non-ferry served islands, such as Stuart Island, and lets you know the best ways to get there. He explores state parks, county parks, and provincial parks as well as some municipal and regional parks, and features the San Juan Island National Parks (American Camp and English Camp). A great guide to take along on your next adventure. www.craigromano.com
More Village Cycles to love
Village Cycles on Lopez Island is rolling on some new projects. With a new bike stand at the ferry landing, it is easier to leave your car at home; call ahead to reserve a bike and it will be waiting for you when you get off the ferry. The shop has moved to a new location in Lopez Village, with a new shop space twice the size of their old one, with plenty of room for new products such as skateboards and accessories for rent and sale – look for paddle boards and active apparel coming soon, so you can bike, skate, hike, paddle and kayak Island Style! Located in the village across from Holly B’s Bakery at 214 Lopez Rd.; 360-468-4013; www.villagecycles.net.
New ownership for Lavendera Massage
One of Friday Harbor’s sweetest spas is getting a facelift, with new ownership and new offerings. After a hectic day whale watching and walking on the beach, get serious about relaxation with Lavendera’s new botanical Face Radiance Treatment, chair massages or couples massage. Lavendera’s massage therapists will also bring their tables to your home away from home. Lavendera Massage, 214 Spring St.; 360-378-3637; www.lavanderadayspa.com.
Snug Harbor Resort’s new coffee shop and meeting rooms complete
In addition to Snug Harbor Resort’s 13 new waterfront cabins, all boasting full kitchens, beautiful interiors vaulted ceilings and stunning views; the new office, store, cozy coffee shop and events room with floor-to-ceiling stone fireplace and private outdoor patio are now open for business. This meeting space - ready for weddings receptions, family reunions and corporate retreats - will allow groups to rent the whole complex, to work and celebrate on site. Contact: Erik Nelson, 360-378-4762 [email protected], www.snugresort.com.
Van Go’s Pizza – the Art of the Pie in Friday Harbor
Chef Daniel Van Hamersfeld, born and educated at the prestigious St. Hubertus Culinary Academy in the Netherlands, had the chance to cook all over the world before settling in Friday Harbor. His adventurous palate – and passion for pizza – drove him to start Van Go’s Pizza, a simple pizza place with a lovely outdoor patio, creating unique, premium pies. From classic margarita pizza with fresh mozzarella, tomatoes and basil, to a local favorite, prosciutto and pear, there are many combinations to choose from, in addition to fresh salads, homemade desserts and ice cream. Contact: Daniel Van Hamersfeld, 360-378-0138; www.vangospizza.com.
Feed your Creative Passions at new Friday Harbor craft store
A new center for the crafter is open in Friday Harbor, with crafting tools, and quilting, sewing and scrapbooking supplies. In addition to supplies, this large shop offer a variety of ways for crafters to learn new skills and connect with each other, including classes and group events. Most items in the store are available in the classroom to try-out to see if it will work for your project. www.creativepassionsbt.com
New & Cool things to have on your radar for winter:
New opening date for IMA Museum of Art’s stunning new facility – Glass artist William Morris featured
San Juan Islands Museum of Art (IMA) has a new grand opening date for its dramatic new building – February 14, 2015. A glass atrium entrance will lead into the 6,000 square foot facility in the heart of Friday Harbor on San Juan Island. The opening exhibit features the glasswork of internationally-renowned northwest glass artist, William Morris. The first permanent facility for the ten-year-old institution, the museum will continue its history of quarterly exhibits featuring the work of internationally-recognized contemporary northwest visual artists and sculptors. The Morris exhibit, entitled “Illuminations,” opens February 14, 2015 and continues through May 13, 2015. Contact: Rebecca Parks, 360-370-5050, [email protected], www.sjima.org.
NEW DATES! Washington State Ferry “Save a Spot” reservations will make catching the ferry a breeze
- Beginning December 2, 2014, WSF will accept online vehicle reservations for customers traveling between Anacortes and the San Juan Islands for travel beginning January 5, 2014.
- Customers may reserve sailings 3-6 months in advance based on schedule availability. Additional vehicle space will be made available closer to sailing dates for short-term planners.
- Customers can change or cancel a reservation online for free. There will be a fee for no-shows, however.
Westbound reservations from Anacortes on Washington State Ferries (WSF) are available for all ferry- served San Juan Islands. Reservations for return trips eastbound to Anacortes may be made from San Juan and Orcas Island only. Ferry info: http://www.wsdot.wa.gov/Ferries/TakeaFerry/#howsaveaspotworks
Contact: Marta Coursey (206) 515-3918 [email protected]
Other great WSF tools: To lessen ferry wait times for those without a reservation, check out these other great tools on the WSF website: http://www.wsdot.wa.gov/ferries/. “Typical Vehicle Traffic Conditions” for Anacortes – San Juans, the grid shows typical ferry loads by season. Late Summer 2014 Labor Day 2014 The Terminal Conditions Page: www.wsdot.wa.gov/ferries/vesselwatch/Terminals.aspx shows how many spaces are left in real time.
You can also see all the island ferry landings – and other island sites – at the new and improved www.islandcam.com.
Visit our online calendar for all events: www.VisitSanJuans.com/events
Updated June 19, 2014
Third Saturday Summer Art Walk in Friday Harbor
Spark your creativity and join in the fun this summer at the Friday Harbor Art Walk. On the third Saturday of each month through September 20th, five Friday Harbor galleries—Arctic Raven Gallery, Gallery 9, Island Studios, WaterWorks Gallery and Ogle Fine Art Studio—will be open until 8:00 p.m., showing painting, sculpture, mixed-media, woodwork, fiber arts and more, created by talented local and regional artists. Wander from gallery to gallery, meet new friends, enjoy refreshments and browse for that perfect gift or piece of art for your home. Contact: Ruth [email protected], (360) 378-3060.
Drive-in Movies in Friday Harbor
You'll have to wait until November 7-9th for the 2nd Annual Friday Harbor Film Festival, but in the meantime, how about enjoying a drive-in movie on the big screen at the Fairgrounds? The summer film series features classic movies that kids and adults will love, from Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (6/6), to Back to the Future (7/5), and continues in October with An American Tail (10/3), Hook (10/17) and Beetlejuice (10/31). Shows begin at sundown at the San Juan County Fairgrounds. Contact: Barbara Marrett, (360) 378-6822 x6, [email protected].
Northwest Sky Ferry, San Juan Airlines Complete Merger
May 22, Northwest Sky Ferry (Bellingham) and San Juan Airlines (Anacortes) merged flight operations to become the new San Juan Airlines. “This acquisition will position us to expand our flight schedule, accommodate larger parties, and offer more destinations,” Northwest Sky Ferry president, Skip Jansen, said. San Juan Airlines offers daily scheduled, charter and scenic flights serving the San Juan Islands, Bellingham, Anacortes, Port Angeles, Point Roberts, Seattle Tacoma Int'l, British Columbia and beyond. Contact: Katie Jansen, (360) 376-7139 / (800) 874-4434 www.sanjuanairlines.com, [email protected]
Study Art on Orcas Island
If you’ve ever wanted to get away from it all and study art on an island, now’s your chance. Orcas Art Studios is offering art classes all summer long, featuring artists from around the Northwest teaching in their media, including “Drawing the Figure in Ink, Wash and Coal” and “Degas Dancers in Pastel,” both with Orcas artist Terry Furchgott; “Introduction to Soft Pastels” and “Landscape Painting in Pastel,” both with Seattle artist Barbara Noonan; and “Understanding Composition through Shape and Notan” with Seattle artist Mitchell Albala. Contact: [email protected], www.orcasartstudios.com.
Friday Harbor Art Market Lights up Friday Nights
Wander the outdoor Friday Harbor Art Market every Friday afternoon from 3:00 - 7:00 p.m. on Brickworks Plaza, from June 20 until August 29. Talk to island artists from San Juan, Orcas, Lopez and Waldron Islands, grab a home grown bite to eat and listen to local musical artists. This year, a new interactive art station facilitated by artist Pamela Hoke, called “The Creation Station,” is a chance for kids and adults to get creative and walk away with their on artistic creation. Contact: Debbie Pigman, (360) 472-0216, [email protected]
A Place to Play is Ready to Go
Rainy day? Kids need a place to unwind? A Place to Play, which opened Memorial Day weekend, offers a creative, safe indoor space in downtown Friday Harbor for children to play rain or shine, while accompanied by an adult. Kids can steer a big wooden boat, ride a stuffed horse, build a sand castle or construct a ball maze. Light snacks and drinks for purchase and private birthday party packages offered. Contact: Cathy Kromer, (360) 378-0378, [email protected], www.aplacetoplay.biz.
Sails & Whales Packages Offer Island Spy-hopping at its Best
In the morning, visitors can hop onto a 50-foot ex-racing yacht, S/V Tomahawk, on Orcas Island, for a relaxing sail with small parties of six, and lunch on a non-ferry served island. After lunch, the sailboat will rendezvous with Captain Hobbes powerboat, M/V Natsilane, which will ply the waters of the Salish Sea watching for orca whales, Dall’s porpoise, harbor seals, sea lions, eagles, sea birds and more. With years of experience and a love of viewing wildlife in their natural habitat, both captains know their way around the islands, whether it is the best place to watch sea lions sunbathing, or the best beach for lunch. Contact: Captain Hobbes, (360) 298-0012, [email protected], www.sanjuanislandwhales.com/tours-packages.
For Families: Paddle and Pamper Package at Earthbox Inn & Spa
Kids, did you know that eelgrass tastes like coconut and starfish can live for 35 years? Did you know that a massage can help you feel more relaxed and soothe those achy growing pains? Join San Juan Outfitters for a 3-hour family kayak tour where you can see critters in the water, feel the sun on your face and race Dad back to the docks. Then have a relaxing side-by-side massage with Mom or Dad at The Spa at Earthbox, using hot stones from our island beaches and fancy, organic lotions from Italy. Contact: Laura Saccio, (360) 378-4000 ext. 3003, [email protected]
Acanthus Suites Offers New Historic Lodgings in Friday Harbor
One of Friday Harbor's first important historic homes has been transformed into charming accommodation, just blocks from the ferry landing. Originally built in 1913 as a wedding gift for a well-to-do merchant’s daughter, the house has been well cared for over the past 101 years. It was recently fully restored to its former glory with almost all of its original elements intact. Acanthus Suites offers five suites: One is pet friendly, with its own entrance to the spacious back yard. A shared front porch invites guests to sit and relax. Rates range from $129-$199 per night during the summer season, June 15 - November 10, with a three-night minimum. Contact: Lynn Danaher, (360) 378-6692, www.fridayharborvr.com, [email protected].
Experience Orcas Island Charm on the Cheap
Golden Tree Hostel is the perfect place for travelers looking for budget accommodations on Orcas Island, in a restored 1890 Victorian farmhouse, just blocks from Eastsound. This new hostel offers affordable, beautiful, private, hotel rooms as well as shared traveler rooms. All rooms have shared baths, and there is a fully-equipped kitchen for communal meals. Sit by the campfire, play a game of pool, soak in the hot tub, enjoy the sauna, lounge on the lawn, meet new people, cook food from a local farm, and go explore the beauty of the island and surrounding sea. Contact: Ian Woolworth, (360) 317-8693, [email protected].
Food & Liquid Arts Dispatches
Explore the “Gourmet Archipelago” on a Farm-to-Kayak Adventure
This unforgettable, all-inclusive 3-day/2-night paddling adventure takes a small group of kayakers around the San Juan Islands, camping at remote island state parks, watching for orca whales, seals, porpoise, sea birds, sea stars and other amazing wildlife. Kayakers will enjoy carefully prepared meals featuring locally grown and organic foods along the way. Check website for schedule: www.orcasoutdoors.com. Contact: Aimee or Ryan, (360) 376-4611, [email protected].
New Winery on Orcas Island Makes Three
Father and son Alexander and Randy Schemkes’ dream of having a winery has come true on Orcas Island, where the pair have opened Orcas Island Winery on Crow Valley Road, and are producing 9 different wines from grapes grown around the state, from Chardonnay, Riesling and the sweeter Siegerrebe, to Syrah, Zinfandel and Malbec grown in Columbia Valley, until their estate-grown grapes are in production. The tasting room is open to the public Friday through Sunday, 12 noon to 7:00 p.m. Orcas Island Winery joins San Juan Vineyard (www.sanjuanvineyards.com) and Lopez Island Vineyard and Winery (www.lopezislandvineyards.com) to complete a trio of wineries, one on each island. To complete the tasting route, visit Island Hoppin’ Brewery (www.islandhoppinbrewery.com) on Orcas and San Juan Distillery/Westcott Bay Cidery (www.sanjuandistillery.com). Contact: Alexander Schemkes, (425) 314-7509.
Lunch and Learn at The Bluff
Indulge in a delightful lunch experience that will treat your taste buds and leave you ready to show off your new skills in the kitchen at Friday Harbor House’s The Bluff Restaurant. Every Tuesday from 11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m., Executive Chef Aaron Rock will demonstrate transforming a protein fresh from local waters or farms into a delicious dish. Everything from cleaning and prepping to slicing and serving - Chef Rock covers it all as you sit back and enjoy fresh focaccia bread and a glass of wine. Tickets are $40. Chef Rock will feature a different producer each week, including Jones Family Farms, Heritage Farm, Shoal Bay Shellfish, and wineries such as San Juan Vineyards and Lopez Island Vineyards & Winery. Other events and dinners are planned throughout the summer and fall; find out more at www.fridayharborhouse.com/dining_events.php. Contact: Chef Aaron Rock, (360) 378-8455, [email protected].
Barn Owl Bakery’s Wild-leavened Breads Mix in Local Grains, Fruits and More
On a tucked-away farm on Lopez Island, Barn Owl Bakery is part of a quiet revolution. “Wild-leavened” breads, meaning bread that has no commercial yeast added, but relies on the natural “wild” yeasts in the air, are joining wines, ciders, meads and beers that rely on “native fermentation,” and are catching the attention of the food world. Visitors can call ahead to watch the baking process on the farm, but bread sales take place each Saturday through September 13, at the Lopez Island Farmers Market (www.lopezfarmersmarket.com). Contact: Sage Dilts or Nathan Hodges, (360) 468-3492, www.barnowlbakery.com, [email protected].
Downriggers’ “Mini-Me” Serves up Smaller Menu at RoadRiggers Food Truck
Downriggers wasn’t down for long after the fire that consumed the restaurant last fall. This summer, RoadRiggers wheels in to the rescue to offer a delicious summer menu of burgers, fish and chips, sandwiches, chef’s specials and more. The truck, colorfully painted with flying salmon, will be parked at the Friday Harbor waterfront, offering delivery to downtown Friday Harbor and to boats moored at the docks. Menu highlights include: hand-dipped Alaska Halibut Fish and Chips; Wagyu beef bacon burger with roasted green chili salsa and a fried egg; or a blackened salmon Cobb salad. Contact: Debbie Rishell, (360) 298-4700, [email protected], www.roadriggerssanjuan.com.
Café Olga and Orcas Island Artworks in Eastsound
The historic strawberry packing plant in the tiny hamlet of Olga is experiencing a rebirth since the tragic fire that partially destroyed it last summer. In the meantime, the always popular Café Olga has set up shop in Eastsound at 18 Urner St., where you can experience the same classic breakfast and lunch offerings. Nearby on Main St., Orcas Island Artworks has established their new co-op gallery, featuring island artists working in oils, metal, fiber, stone and more. Both operations are looking to return to Olga at some time in the future, once the Olga Artworks building is restored. Until then, support and enjoy them in town. Contact: Café Olga, (360) 376-5098; Orcas Island Artworks, (360) 376-4408.
New Orcas Food Co-op Offers Farm-fresh Local Foods
Opening this June, the Orcas Food Co-op takes over the Homegrown Natural Foods space in the center of Eastsound, with a face lift and a new attitude. Focusing on organic, non-GMO products, the Co-op will offer San Juan Islands and regionally grown produce, meats, seafood, beer, wine, preserves, sauces, pastas and more. Visitors can stop in for gourmet grab-and-go picnics, pick up that special bottle of wine to sip on the deck, or stock up for a weekend at the cabin. Contact: Learner Limbach, [email protected], www.orcasfood.coop.
Cover the Waterfront with New Eateries on Orcas Island
Now there are more ways to enjoy lunch, appetizers and a drink, or dinner overlooking the water in Eastsound. The White Horse Pub (www.islandwhitehorse.com; Shelbi Matilla-Patton, [email protected], (360) 376-PUBS) has taken over the old Vern’s space, offering pub food, beer, wine, cocktails, a pool table and music. Just two doors down, The Madrona Bar & Grill (www.madronabarandgrill.com; Steve and Monica Duthie, (360) 376-7171) has expanded their space upstairs, The Madrona Loft, to include a small bar, dining room and outside deck. Both restaurants look out over beautiful East Sound, the largest fjord in the San Juan Islands. The small Indian Island is a wildlife preserve managed by Kwiaht, the Center for the Ecological History of the Salish Sea (www.kwiaht.org), which offers walking tours at low tide.
San Juan Islands Visitors Bureau
(360) 378-6822 ext. 6
What’s New & Cool in the San Juan Islands for 2014 - Spring Edition
Visit our online calendar for all events: www.VisitSanJuans.com/events
Updated April 8, 2014
IMA Museum of Art Creating Stunning New Facility – Glass Artist William Morris Featured
San Juan Islands Museum of Art (IMA) plans a dramatic new building with glass atrium entrance in their 6,000 square foot facility in the heart of Friday Harbor on San Juan Island. The grand opening, August 2, will feature the glasswork of internationally-renowned northwest glass artist, William Morris. The first permanent facility for the ten-year-old institution, the museum will continue its history of quarterly exhibits featuring the work of internationally-recognized contemporary northwest visual artists and sculptors. The Morris exhibit, entitled “Illuminations,” will run August 2 – November 9th. Hours 11-6 summer, 11-5 fall. www.sjima.org. Contact: Rebecca Parks, (360) 370-5050, [email protected],
New Scenic Byway Signs Herald Main Attractions: Over ninety San Juan Islands Scenic Byway wayshowing signs will be posted in April, making it easier for visitors to find scenic spots, attractions, parks and amenities on Orcas Island and San Juan Island. Logo signs will be distributed at major attractions and along Byway routes on both islands. In addition, large gateway interpretive signs will be erected at the Anacortes, Orcas Island and San Juan Island/Friday Harbor Washington State Ferries terminals. Touring maps of the San Juan Islands Scenic Byway may be found on the San Juan Islands Visitors Bureau’s website at www.visitsanjuans.com/tours. Contact: Deborah Hopkins Buchanan, 360-378-6822 ext.5, [email protected]
ADA Friendly Friday Harbor: Friday Harbor, on San Juan Island, is one square mile of walkable historic seaside village, however, for the mobility challenged it hasn’t always been easy getting around. That’s been changing for the better. In the last year the Town has have retrofitted four intersections with ramps and built new sidewalks with access to the airport, marina and grocery store. Plans include more new sidewalks with ADA ramps on one of our busiest streets later this year. ADA compliant public restrooms and many wheelchair friendly restaurants and lodgings make visiting for mobility challenged individuals easier than ever. Contact: Barbara Marrett, (360) 378-6822 ext. 6 [email protected]
Driving, Cycling & Walking Tours added to Website: The best sights in the islands are gathered in our new mobile driving, cycling and walking tours of the San Juan Islands. Easy-to-use itineraries available on your computer or mobile device guide you on a walking tour through the quaint streets of Friday Harbor, past historical sites, museums and shops. Explore Orcas, Lopez and San Juan Island by bicycle or car; each location is described and mapped so you can plan ahead, or find your way around the islands once you are here. The Scenic By-way sites are also stops on these tours, so you can make sure not to miss the most beautiful stops in the islands. www.visitsanjuans.com/tours.
Snug Harbor Resort Is All New: A hidden gem on the west side of San Juan Island, the resort has been a retreat for more than 50 years for visitors who love whale watching, fishing, kayaking, hiking. The Resort has recently gone through a complete upgrade, completion of construction of 7 new waterfront cabins in June will bring the total of new cabins to 16. In addition, a new office, store, and coffee shop building with water view guest rooms on the second floor, have been added. For the first time, meeting space for weddings receptions, family reunions and corporate retreats is available. Contact: Erik Nelson (360) 378-4762 [email protected] www.snugresort.com.
Discovery Sea Kayaks Bioluminescence Tour: The allure of the darkness and the still calm of a San Juan Island night create a magical setting for this tour. The Salish Sea is a highly nutrient rich body of water, creating an environment with a wide diversity of bioluminescent microorganisms. With the disturbance that kayaks and paddles make moving across the water’s surface, these organisms give off a green sparkle of light. http://www.discoveryseakayak.com/kayak-trips/bioluminescence-tour. Richard Swanson, (360) 378-2559, [email protected].
Lopez Island Historical Society Plans New Exhibit of Extraordinary Artifact Collection: A Lopez family’s incomparable collection of Northwest Coast Native artifacts was recently donated to the Lopez Island Historical Society. The collection contains more than 200 stone, bone and antler items, virtually every aspect of local Native life is represented in the collection. Select items will go on display this summer while a permanent exhibit is slated to open next year. http://www.islandsweekly.com/news/247148651.html http://www.lopezmuseum.org Contact: Mark Thompson-Klein, (360) 468-2049 [email protected]
Kruger Escapes Sailing, What’s SUP? Kruger Escapes sailing charters is offering tours combining sailing with stand up paddleboarding. From Orcas Island, step aboard a famous, ex-ocean racing sailboat for a morning voyage to a non ferry-served island in the San Juans. After an energizing lunch, guests will leave the boat at anchor and explore the gorgeous waters of the Salish Sea by SUP boards. Single or multi day trips tailored to any experience level are available. Trips depart from and return to Deer Harbor Marina on Orcas Island. or pick-up and return to San Juan Island, by arrangement. Info & reservations: www.krugerescapes.com. Contact: Jessica Kruger, (360) 201-0586 or [email protected]
A Place to Play: Rainy day? Kids need a place to unwind? A Place to Play, opening Memorial Day weekend, offers a creative, safe indoor space in downtown Friday Harbor for children to play rain or shine, while accompanied by an adult. Kids can steer a big wooden boat, ride a stuffed horse, build a sand castle or construct a ball maze. Light snacks and drinks for purchase and private birthday party packages offered. www.aplacetoplay.biz Cathy Kromer (360) 378-0378 [email protected]
History Live Here: Quilts, Quarters and Quirks of History During National Historic Preservation Month in May, quilt exhibits, guided walking tours, lectures, open historic officers’ quarters and other special events will convey the islands’ captivating and often quirky history. Specials, packages and event events details on our History Page http://www.visitsanjuans.com/events/history. Contact: Carole Sue Conran, (888) 468-3701, ext. 1. [email protected]
Great WSF tools make ferry riding a breeze: To lessen ferry wait times for those without a reservation, check out these great tools on the Washington State Ferries (WSF) website: http://www.wsdot.wa.gov/ferries/. Search for “Typical Vehicle Traffic Conditions” for Anacortes – San Juans, the grid shows typical ferry loads by season. The Terminal Conditions Page: www.wsdot.wa.gov/ferries/vesselwatch/Terminals.aspx shows how many spaces are left in real time.
Happy One-Year Anniversary San Juan Islands National Monument: On March 25, 2013 President Obama signed a proclamation creating the San Juan Islands National Monument to permanently protecting close to 1,000 acres of BLM Lands in the islands. http://www.bellinghamherald.com/2014/03/29/3555901/national-monument-status-protects.html?sp=/99/122/
San Juan Islands Visitors Bureau
(360) 378-6822 ext. 6