The Editor: Congratulations are in order to the staff and students at Blaine high school for being listed for the fourth consecutive year in the top 6 percent of our nation’s high schools. This is based in part on the number of advanced placement courses offered at our high school, the academic rigor of this coursework and the number of students choosing those rigorous courses. Of course, we also congratulate the teachers, administrators and all support staff who have prepared these students from the beginning of their school years. Diligent parents and other community members, who nurture and teach their children, encouraging them to take on academic challenges and who show support in countless ways to teachers and administrators are deserving of first applause. Indeed, it takes the whole village. We have a school system in the Blaine school district whose focus, along with that of the community, is to continually raise the bar, rather than being content with the status quo. I am honored and humbled to serve our community as a member of our school board. Susan Holmes Blaine
The Editor: Remember just a few short years ago when the price of gasoline was over $5 a gallon? That period of unknown, when the cost of fuel just seemed to go up and up with no ceiling in sight was the inspiration for the Blaine community gardeners market, the development of community gardens, increased interest in personal gardens and the creation of a community orchard. At the moment, fuel prices may have settled down some, but the need for shopping locally and a weekly community gathering place such as the gardeners market here in Blaine has never been greater. I encourage you to support your free market by bringing products that you grow, collect and create to sell on Saturday market days. Come to the market between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. to meet and greet your friends and neighbors, to play music, laugh, have fun, shop and celebrate our shared sense of community here in the greater Blaine area. Remember, what we don’t use, we lose over time and when the prices spike again, times may not be so rosy as they are now. As a vendor and a shopper, please continue to support your community gardener’s market now, so it will always be in place. Thank you everyone for your ongoing support of our community. And just to make the market more interesting, each week there will be a drawing for a special prize, just for attending the market. Simply stop at the registration table to enter the free drawing. In addition, if you loved the slug races you’ll really enjoy toy sailboat building and racing on July 3. There will be treats for racers from Nature’s Path. So come on down to your market for fun and local products. For more information, please call Ron at 360/332-8082. Ron Snyder Circle of Trees Studio and Homestead Blaine
The Editor: I am a Girl Scout leader who recently visited your city with my troops for the Peace Arch celebration. We stayed from Friday evening until Sunday in your Blaine Marine Park. It was a gorgeous weekend and we met many friendly people. This is not the first time we have camped in your park for this event. We always feel welcome and secure. It is one of the highlights of our scouting year. Thank you for making this opportunity available to us. In previous years, we found The Plover and have made it a tradition to ride it while visiting Blaine. We had told the new girls in our troop about this fun and historical boat ride and we were looking forward to it. We were disappointed this year to find that it was not scheduled to start its run until June 18, the week after the Peace Arch celebration. But wait! Captain Richard Sturgill comes to the rescue. Little did we know that a friendly chat started with a passerby in the park Friday night as we were setting up our campsite would yield so much unexpected benefit. Captain Richard was riding through the park and stopped to say hello. My co-leader, Gneiss Last, shared with him our purpose for camping and our past experiences in Blaine. She mentioned The Plover and our disappointment in not getting to see it this year. She did not know she was talking to its captain. He explained his role, and the budget cuts that had led to the curtailed schedule of the Plover. We all understand budget cuts. A friendly goodbye and we settled in for the night. Just as breakfast was over on Saturday morning, our captain appeared again. He had a deal for us. If we could meet him soon, he could take us out for a special cruise on The Plover. You have never seen dishes finished so fast. The day was beautiful, the bay was gorgeous, and the trip exhilarating. Everyone had a blast. The girls were very touched by the solemn ceremony with which Captain Richard presented each one with an honorary captain’s certificate for their expert and safe handling of the boat. The certificates will be framed very soon. Thank you again for all you do to make this weekend a memorable one for the children. We are grateful for the use of the park, the amenities you provide for our comfort and the sense of security that surrounds this experience. You all go “above and beyond” expectations. We appreciate it and look forward to visiting you again soon. Deborah Torgerson Mountlake Terrace
The Editor: The aftermath of last years 4th of July celebration left 4,340 lbs (2.17) tons of garbage on the beaches, tide flats and along Birch Bay Drive. Residents and community volunteers of the trash and litter crew (TLC) spent the following day collecting and bagging the trash and hauling 16 pick up loads to Birch Bay transfer station. Paul Razore, owner of SCC/Blaine Bay Refuse allowed the trash to be dumped free of charge to the community. Tourists, visitors and residents alike were appalled at the mess left on the beaches of Birch Bay. Conversation the next day focused around “who are these people who leave their garbage behind and have such disregard for a community, a shoreline and the public who come to enjoy the amenities of Birch Bay?” Birch Bay is the only place in the county that the public is allowed to congregate and blow off fireworks. The least the public can do is be responsible and pick up their trash. Pack it in, pack it out! Safety is also a concern. Celebrating with alcohol and fireworks can be a dangerous mix. Many beer and wine bottles were tossed and broken glass was left behind on the beaches presenting a safety hazard to all who enjoy the beaches of Birch Bay. A reminder: It is against the law to consume alcoholic beverages on public beaches. Last year, “Operation Birch Bay,” conducted by the Whatcom County Sheriff’s Department to control the Birch Bay celebration cost the county taxpayers $11,100. 18 personnel were scheduled, 115 hours of regular time and 122 hours of overtime were logged. The community is grateful for the deputy’s assistance, presence and response to help control and preserve public safety. Dora-Lee Booth Birch Bay
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