News in Brief

Published on Thu, Apr 30, 2009 by Tara Nelson

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News in Brief

By Tara Nelson

Dog park volunteer work party May 16

Blaine City Council unanimously approved an extension for the Skallman Park off-leash area. Parks and cemetery board member Joan Clark said the new space was needed to accommodate the high usage of the park by local residents. Volunteers are needed to help spring cleaning at the park on Saturday, May 16, 9:30 a.m. - 1 p.m. Participants are encouraged to bring shovels, rakes, trash bags. A potluck lunch will follow. Bring something to share and personal utensils. The park is located near Yew Street behind the public works yard.

County hits bump in speed limit change

Whatcom County Council will consider a proposal by Birch Bay residents to change the speed limit of Birch Bay Drive to 25 miles per hour, year-round. The move comes after council voted 7-0 to reject a similar proposal by Whatcom County public works that would have reduced the speed limit of Birch Bay Drive to 25 miles per hour, with the exception of a section at the north end, between Harborview and Shintaffer roads. Council directed staff to return in two weeks with a new plan.

City schedules annual clean-up day

The City of Blaine has scheduled its annual clean-up day from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, May 16 on C Street between Third and Fourth streets.

The city has partnered with Sanitary Services, RDS, Whatcom County Disposal of Toxics, Northwest Recycling, Appliance Depot, and Safe and Easy Recycling, and will provide Blaine residents the opportunity to dispose of garbage and recyclables including toxic household items, appliances and electronics at little or no cost. For a complete list of accepted items, visit or call 332-8311, # 3334.

Meditation center hosts gardening event

The SK Birch Bay Meditation Center will host its second annual organic gardening workshop this coming Sunday 1 to 5 p.m. at their 10-acre retreat center located at 5560 Bayvue Road in Birch Bay. The event will feature industry experts who will discuss theories and practices of organic gardening, composting, soil management, mulching, container gardening and raised beds. The center will also conduct some hands on work in the gardens as well. Individuals are invited to participate in this learning opportunity. Call for directions and to register at 371-5560.

WSU hosts eco-friendly gardening event

The Washington State University Beach Watchers and Shore Stewards have scheduled a “blue thumb” gardening workshop from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. on Saturday, May 16 at the Blaine Boating Center at 235 Marine Drive. Participants can learn about eco-friendly gardening as well as beautiful choices for coastal gardens, how to invite wildlife into a backyard habitat, controlling common pests with non-toxic methods and how to construct a rain barrel. Cost is $10 a person, $7 for shore stewards and includes lunch. To register call Cheryl Lovato Niles at 676-6736.

Television critic to speak at Semiahmoo

Blaine resident Ron Miller will speak about his life and work as a nationally-syndicated television columnist during a series of events at Semiahmoo Resort during the month of May.

Miller, who lives in Semiahmoo, will share personal anecdotes about Lucille Ball, of “I Love Lucy” as well as other insights from his career.

He is the author of “Mystery! A Celebration,” the official companion book to the PBS series “Mystery!” and has taught adult education classes at Western Washington University and Whatcom Community College. He is currently a television columnist for Mystery Scene magazine and is managing editor and columnist with, an online publication featuring several former newspaper columnists. Call 371-2000 for more information.

Bay Automotive offers gardening plots

Bay Automotive owner Stan Calhoon, of Birch Bay, is offering community garden plots at no cost to local residents at his business at 4144 Bay Road in Birch Bay. The plots are 10 by 20 feet and given on a first come, first served basis. The plots are available at no cost, but some water fees may apply. For more information, call 366-1043.

Spa experience to fund Agape Home

The Blaine Christian Fellowship will host a spa experience fundraiser from noon to 4 p.m. on Saturday, May 2 to raise money for the new Agape Home for women and children in Bellingham.

Participants can enjoy a full hour of a complimentary mini-pedicure, manicure, or facial while their supervised children are engaged in games and other activities. Donations will be accepted to go toward a housewarming gift for the New Agape Home for women and children. For more information contact Elizabeth Christy at 360/306-5863 or visit:

Canadian-born residents encouraged to apply for birth abroad document

The U.S. Consulate in Vancouver would like to encourage families with at least one American parent of children born in British Columbia or the Yukon Territory to apply for a Consular Report of Birth Abroad. The child must be under the age of 18 to qualify for issuance of this document. An appointment is required, and parents must meet certain citizenship transmission criteria. For more information, visit