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Excavation begins for Center Street project

No building permit has yet been issued, but excavation began at the 306 Center Street condominium project site last week to find the water table on the property so that paperwork could be completed for removal of contaminated soil. Following that...

 
 By Adam Sowards    News    December 20, 2024

Managing food insecurity key to a strong local food system

Local grocery shoppers pause and compare prices. They add up the rising costs of food and wonder how they will afford their next meal. This is how Arin Magill, director of the La Conner Sunrise Food Bank, defines food insecurity: concern about where...

 
 By Ken Stern    News    December 20, 2024

November felt cold and was damp but not much rain fell

Don’t let December’s rain, gray skies or fields of standing water distract you into thinking it has rained a lot. November maintained 2023’s pattern of rainfall below the monthly century’s norms. While precipitation came down 22 days, half of thos...

 
 By Bill Reynolds    News    May 29, 2024 
A bugler plays at a Memorial Day cemetery ceremony

Remember the fallen

Busy lives paused Monday as local residents took time to reflect on the past during annual Memorial Day services at two area cemeteries. Somber holiday programs drew large turnouts to the Pleasant Rid...

 
 By Ken Stern    News    May 29, 2024 

Town seeks consultant to create a south end master plan

The Town of La Conner seeks consultants to create a master plan, the first step for development of the 3-acre industrial area west and south of its S. Third Street parking lot below the town hall to Caledonia Street. It posted a request for...

 
 By Kurt Batdorf    News    May 29, 2024 
Mother and daughter select books

State leaders hear Swinomish Tribe thoughts on literacy and education

The state's top educators want to learn why some Native American students struggle with literacy more than their peers, so they're traveling the state to hear from families. The Swinomish Indian...

 
 By Bill Reynolds    News    May 29, 2024 

Tribal senior center hosts training for disaster preparation

Being prepared is no longer exclusively a Boy Scout thing. It works for senior citizens as well. That's why the Swinomish Senior Center was the site of a three-hour community disaster preparedness...

 
 By Bill Reynolds    News    May 29, 2024 

Planning commission OKs gazebo for downtown store

Caravan Gallery on First Street has long been known for its unique vibe. That likely won’t change anytime soon based on action taken last week by the Town Planning Commission. The downtown retail outlet, which enjoys a loyal customer base drawn to i...

 
 By Ken Stern    News    May 29, 2024 

La Conner Library District board questions coverage of state audit

The monthly La Conner Rural Partial County Library District monthly board meeting Tuesday, May 21, proceeded pretty much like most small governmental district board meetings, from starting with approving the April meeting minutes to experiencing...

 
 By Bill Reynolds    News    May 29, 2024 

Transitional kindergarten eyed as option to fill preschool void

When national Head Start budget cuts announced earlier this year spelled the imminent demise of the Little Braves preschool program, La Conner Elementary School Principal Heather ­Fakkema reacted with sadness. But not panic. Fakkema was among those...

 
 By Bill Reynolds    News    May 29, 2024 

Pitching La Conner's benefits in the 1950s

Strange as it may sound today, there was a time when having a parking problem in La Conner meant more cars were wanted on First Street to spur retail shopping – and when retail meant purchases for h...

 
 By Judy Booth    News    May 22, 2024
Native Americans carry offerings for the First Salmon ceremony

We bless this fleet

Five-year old Drea Edwards-Gould hugged her Auntie Melinda tight as the Swinomish Fish and Game Enforcement boat pulled out of the docks and propelled in one of the four directions to make an...

 
 By Bill Reynolds    News    May 22, 2024

First Street will switch to one-way

The La Conner Town Council last week chose to forego the path of least resistance when dealing with future downtown traffic flow and parking. Rather than table action and extend discussion of options for S. First Street, council members voted 4-0...

 
 By Judy Booth    News    May 22, 2024
Two musicians stand behind four guitars

Guitar Festival fills La Conner with music

A couple thousand artisans, luthiers, musicians and wood millers from as far away as Italy and Spain, landed here last weekend for the sixth annual La Conner Guitar Festival to see, listen to and...

 
 By Bill Reynolds    News    May 22, 2024
Man stands beside berry vines

Berry good: Dean Swanson is outstanding La Conner alumnus

He was raised and again resides on a diversified century-old farm north of town, but more than any single crop it's been goodwill that Dean Swanson has spent a lifetime cultivating. "I've been lucky...

 
 By Anne Basye    News    May 22, 2024
A superstructure is lowered onto a passenger ferry hull

A 'mating' milestone marks Mavrik ferry #3

Ferry #3 under construction by Mavrik Marine had a little sunshine on Thursday, May 16, when its superstructure was rolled from one Mavrik building to another. The hull has been under construction in...

 
 By Bill Reynolds    News    May 22, 2024

State biologist named to town emergency panel

A Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife ­biologist will look to maintain the ­chemistry enjoyed by the Town's ­Emergency Management ­Commission since its inception in 2023. Three-year town res...

 
 By Ken Stern    News    May 22, 2024

Court of Appeals may consider Henrie's Shelter Bay board case

The 2023 lawsuit brought by then-resident Jan Henrie against the Shelter Bay Community’s board of directors executive committee may be considered by the Washington Court of Appeals. Skagit County Superior Court Judge Laura Riquelme granted the d...

 
 By Ken Stern    News    May 22, 2024

Election results for Shelter Bay board

The Shelter Bay Community voted to continue Wendy Poulton, Pat McGarry and Monte Hicks as members of its board of directors at its election and annual meeting Saturday, May 18. Poulton, with 307 votes, and Hicks, with 273, were reelected. McGarry,...

 

A debate of two-party U.S. politics

Come hear what the Mount Vernon High School debate team is thinking about our two party political system tomorrow, Thursday, May 23. The League of Women Voters of Skagit County organized the debate for its 2024 outreach series of voter education,...

 

Pavement work on Best Road

Through June 6, Skagit County Public Works crews will grind out worn pavement and replace it with new asphalt on Best Road, between McLean and Chilberg roads. During the work, traffic will be reduced...

 
 By Ken Stern    News    May 22, 2024

La Conner isn't only rural library that struggles to meet state certification

When the La Conner ­Swinomish Library Board of Directors named Jean Markert the library’s director in 2022, it did so despite Markert’s lack of a library science degree and required state certification. La Conner is not alone in operating a libr...

 
 By Ken Stern    News    May 15, 2024

Audit dings La Conner Library, faults compliance

A state accountability audit of the La Conner Swinomish Library for the years 2020-2022 found serious faults in some of the district's practices and procedures. "District operations did not comply,...

 
 By Bill Reynolds    News    May 15, 2024
People march down a road

Marchers raise awareness of missing, murdered native women

In the walk-up to Mother's Day, supporters met at John K. Bob Ball Park Friday to march in honor of missing and murdered indigenous women. Marchers from as far as British Columbia walked...

 

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