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Articles from the April 5, 2023 edition


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  • Saturday's tulip parade is a favorite local tradition

    Bill Reynolds|Apr 5, 2023

    It started as an impromptu event. Then it became not-so-impromptu. These days the La Conner Kiwanis Skagit Valley Tulip Festival Parade on First Street is among the most visible and highly anticipated signs that spring – if not just around the corner – is certainly in the local zip code. This year's serpentine is 2 p.m. April 8. Participants are to gather 30 minutes prior to start time at the La Conner Marina's south basin parking lot. It started in 1987 with the late Luke Long, a La Conner Kiw...

  • Shelter Bay town hall voices Kontos recall pros and cons

    Bill Reynolds|Apr 5, 2023

    Since COVID-19, the Zoom communications platform has been the next best thing to being there. And for Shelter Bay residents, it was even better than that Sunday night. Over 200 of the community’s homeowners logged onto a one-hour Zoom-only town hall addressing the April 12 recall election of Shelter Bay Board Director Judy Kontos. The start was delayed about 15 minutes to accommodate increased participant capacity, which drew more than twice the number of people who regularly attend monthly in-person meetings at the Shelter Bay clubhouse. It a... Full story

  • March cold, little rain

    Ken Stern|Apr 5, 2023

    March was a cold month in a cold winter. Seven nights it frosted, with four overnight lows below 30 degrees the first two weeks and the 28.1 degree month's low March 17. Snow was not measured locally. By all calculations it was cold. The 35 degrees average morning low was 2.9 degrees below the century average of 37.9. The average daily high of 51.4 was 0.8 degrees below the 52.2 century average. Those combined to have the 42.9 degree daily average peg at 1.9 degrees below the 44.8 degrees for the century. The high topped 50 degrees 18 times,...

  • BNSF violated rail agreement with Swinomish Tribe

    Apr 5, 2023

    Fidalgo Island — The United States District Court for the Western District of Washington issued a decision concluding the liability phase of trespass litigation filed by the Swinomish Indian Tribal Community against BNSF Railway March 27, ruling that “BNSF willfully, consciously and knowingly exceeded” limitations in an easement to cross the Tribe’s land. Swinomish Chairman Steve Edwards stated in a press release that “the Tribe takes its agreements very seriously and it expects them to be honored and we are thankful that BNSF is being held to...

  • Public works staff paints curbs red

    Apr 5, 2023

    THIS SHADE IS TULIP RED – Normally the color is called "no curbside parking" red, but when public works staff member Manny Perez paints La Conner curbs in March, the shade is matched to the season....

  • Free speech in Shelter Bay

    Ken Stern|Apr 5, 2023

    Is democracy dangerous to the health of Shelter Bay community board members? Or, is the board’s leadership allergic to free speech? Is it possible that the Weekly News is just plain wrong in its efforts to cover Shelter Bay governance? The Weekly News has taken the standard journalistic approach to cover Shelter Bay: attending meetings; interviewing people; reading documents – including court filings; and tracking social media posts. Staff have spoken to people on and off the record, on background and for source material, including holding nam... Full story

  • Thanks for library support

    Apr 5, 2023

    The opportunity to be involved in a new library project in the community we chose to move to in 2007 has been a once in a lifetime experience. I’m grateful to have been able to work with so many who were dedicated to a shared vision that united our community. After a 20-year dream of the Friends of the Library, and an all-out effort over the past 10 years, our “little library that could” made it happen. Thank you to the La Conner Library board of trustees for your commitment to the new library. You held fast to the goal of a building design and...

  • Sea level rise and migratory birds

    John Day|Apr 5, 2023

    Washington state is a crucial stopover for millions of migrating birds. The diverse landscapes, from the coast to the mountains, provide essential habitats for birds during their long journeys. Among many vital habitats, the Skagit Valley stands out as an especially important wintering ground for tens of thousands of migrating birds. As a major destination for snow geese, swans and other species, the Valley provides crucial resources and shelter during the colder months, helping to ensure the survival of these magnificent creatures. As the...

  • Safety device, human error derailed Anacortes train, federal officials say

    John Ryan, KUOW News|Apr 5, 2023

    The Federal Railroad Administration has confirmed KUOW reporting that a safety device meant to keep trains from plunging into Puget Sound knocked a train off the tracks and onto the Swinomish Reservation early Thursday morning. The short, seven-car BNSF Railway train was approaching a swinging bridge over the Swinomish Channel after leaving an oil refinery in Anacortes. The bridge swings open to let boats through the Swinomish Channel, a shallow, 11-mile long arm of Puget Sound that connects Padilla Bay to Skagit Bay. Devices called...

  • Anne Marguerite Rice

    Apr 5, 2023

    Anne Marguerite Rice 4/3/1939 - 3/17/2023 Anne was born in Seattle to George and Mary Connell. She attended school on Queen Anne Hill, but at age 15 her family was uprooted and they moved to West Seattle where Anne met Lauren Rice, age 16. They became inseparable friends graduating from West Seattle High School, the University of Washington, and both earning masters degrees from Oregon State University. Anne and Lauren were married at West Side Presbyterian Church on December 26, 1959. They had... Full story

  • Council may expand Emergency Management Commission

    Bill Reynolds|Apr 5, 2023

    Should the Town of La Conner’s new Emergency Management Commission have five or six members? Town Council tabled adding a sixth person last week. An alternate might be added, though. Resident Linda Talman nudged officials toward that compromise position during a lengthy discussion. Mayor Ramon Hayes proposed adding a sixth voting member after Jamie Throgmorton applied. Her background makes her an asset to the commission. Town Administrator Scott Thomas was tasked with drafting a resolution modifying membership. Former council member Bill S...

  • Our democracy at work

    Dave Paul|Apr 5, 2023

    Our town hall meetings aren’t that different from what happens in the House and Senate in Olympia. People share their opinions – sometimes softly, sometimes loudly. Yet the kind of dialogue we have—and the attitude we bring to that conversation—determines everything else. It was an honor to host two bipartisan town hall meetings in March and to listen to your ideas, stories and questions. Every town hall is unique, because every community has different issues and ideas. What is the same each ti...

  • Long school board meeting March 27

    Bill Reynolds|Apr 5, 2023

    New La Conner School Board of Directors Loran James and Kim Pedroza hit the ground running last week in a two-hour marathon meeting. James and Pedroza were appointed last month to fill sudden board vacancies. They did not have the luxury of taking time to get up to speed. And despite the length, it was a relatively fast-paced session. New ground was presented midway through in the form of a 30-minute presentation and proposal by Morgan Brown and Jen Willup of the Between Two Worlds indigenous science class to develop a native food medicine fore...

  • Daffodil court named for Tulip Parade

    Apr 5, 2023

    HOLDING COURT – La Conner Elementary School named its Daffodil Festival Royal Court Friday. Princess Heidi Wilbur, Prince Emmitt Alvord, King Jaydon Otis and Queen Isabella Rubalcaba will ride in a float during the La Conner Kiwanis Skagit Valley Tulip Festival Parade Saturday....

  • Murdock, McCormick strike gold in league meet

    Bill Reynolds|Apr 5, 2023

    Back in the day, PF Flyers claimed its sports shoes could make athletes run faster and jump higher. La Conner's Tommy Murdock does that regardless of what footwear he laces up. The Braves junior, a reigning state hurdles champion, took top honors in three events at an NW1B/2B track and field meet hosted by Mount Vernon Christian Wednesday afternoon. Murdock, as expected, swept both hurdles events at Mount Vernon. He won the 110s with a 0:15.81 clocking and captured the 300s in a 0:41.51 finish....

  • Baseball dropped back-to-back league games Friday

    Bill Reynolds|Apr 5, 2023

    Growing pains aren't easy, but the La Conner High School baseball team's coaching staff takes solace knowing the youthful Braves are getting stronger. Last week's NW2B/1B action at Darrington and at home against league leading Mount Vernon Christian are examples. Both games ended in the loss column, but the Braves played on equal terms save for one bad inning in each outing. Darrington rode a 13-run second frame to an 18-7 triumph on Thursday. MVC also parlayed a big second inning – the H...

  • La Conner's Marble, Harper earn All-State hoops honors

    Bill Reynolds|Apr 5, 2023

    The afterglow of a stellar high school basketball season continues to shine for two La Conner High School seniors. Ellie Marble and Josie Harper have received Girls’ 2B all-state recognition from two national digital sports outlets. Marble was tabbed by SBLive, a technology partner of state associations, coaches and administrators, for first unit all-state honors. Harper was a second team selection. Both Marble and Harper were first unit All-State choices of Prep Girls Sports, a major source of in-depth hoops news and coverage, team r...

  • AAUW 2023 $10,000 college scholarships

    Apr 5, 2023

    The Stanwood-Camano Branch of the American Association of University Women is accepting 2023 scholarship applications through April 29 for university students in their junior or senior year or in Master’s Degree programs. Scholarships of $10,000 will be awarded to three applicants who are current residents of La Conner, Stanwood, Camano Island, Arlington or Lakewood areas or are high school graduates from these school districts Applications are at aauwsc.org/scholarship. Source: AAUW, Stanwood-Camano...

  • My Name is Olga and I live in Ukraine

    Judy Booth|Apr 5, 2023

    This article is taken from edited emails received from Olga in Ukraine to Jan Paul of Shelter Bay. Jan has known Olga for twenty years. For security reasons we are not using Olga’s or her family’s last name. Olga became friends with Steve and Jan Paul of Shelter Bay after winning a scholarship to study in the U.S. for one year. She did not live with the Pauls but visited often and stayed in contact with them through the years. They connected. Olga writes: “Before war there were two kinds of people – those who thought it possible and those w...

  • Mommy and me dance time

    Kylee Fortygin|Apr 5, 2023

    Early Friday mornings you can find parents and their children dancing up a storm at Crescent Moon Yoga Studio on Morris Street in La Conner. That is where the fabulous "Ms Mo" teaches kids dance and learning skills through fun activities. "We've been coming since September" said Jessica Van Wagner who brought her toddler, Mae Mae, along. "My daughter learned her colors, better coordination, and how to take direction in an exciting way. This is a fun group setting to engage with others." Ms Mo...

  • Larger birds at your backyard feeders

    Bob Hamblin|Apr 5, 2023

    Here are ways to identify larger birds visiting your backyard and property. Every year or so some evening grosbeaks visit a feeder for sunflower seed. They are robin sized but more heavily built. They usually show up in small flocks vocalizing with whistle like calls. Male and females have different color patterns. Both have heavy seed cracking bills, and they show up in late winter into early spring. Their main food in this area is the samara or seed pod of big leafed maples. They nest in the middle elevations of the cascade mountains in...

  • Easter egg hunts

    Apr 5, 2023

    Several Easter egg hunts will be held Saturday, April 8. The La Conner Firefighter’s Association egg hunt starts at 10 a.m. at Pioneer Park. The Inspire Church has their egg hunt at 11 a.m. There will be over 20,000 eggs to find, a bounce house, food and more. The church is located at 17444 Snee Oosh Rd....

  • Recall campaign targets 5 Shelter Bay directors

    Ken Stern|Apr 5, 2023

    Embattled Shelter Bay Community Director Judy Kontos is on the offensive, petitioning since mid-March to have residents recall the five members of the board’s executive committee. The board sanctioned Kontos in February after an ethics committee investigation Kontos believed was patently unfair. The petitions against board President Wendy Poulton, Vice President Joseph Hurley, Treasurer Louise Kari, Secretary Monte Hicks and Secretary pro tem Elaine Dixon read the same: “In accordance with Shelter Bay Community, Inc. Article V, Section 2, we...

  • Shelter Bay court hearing April 14

    Ken Stern|Apr 5, 2023

    Five Shelter Bay Community board of directors will get their day in Skagit County Superior Court April 14, but until then are restrained from taking any action on the organization’s master lease with the Swinomish Indian Tribal Community or destroying any financial records. In a hearing Friday, March 31, Judge Laura Riquelme found “good cause to grant some requests, essentially temporary restraints” against the board’s executive committee: Wendy Poulton, Elaine Dixon Monte Hicks, Joseph1 Hurley and Louise Kari. Leasehold resident Jan Henrie...

  • Town of La Conner citizen survey

    Apr 5, 2023

    The Town of La Conner is interested in your opinion. It has created a survey for town residents regarding Town of La Conner services and community resources. To complete this survey, go the Town’s website and click on the link at the top of the home page. The deadline for online survey submitals is May 14. Or, pick up a paper copy at Town Hall, 204 Douglas Street. The deadline for paper copy survey submitals is May 10. Website: townoflaconner.org Source: Town of La Conner...

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