Members of the Whidbey Island community gathered Friday in the spirit of the holidays and for a very worthwhile cause. Big Brothers Big Sisters of Island County held its annual Festival of Trees Auction and Gala. It was the nonprofit organization’s largest fundraiser of the year.
By starting the consumer shopping frenzy called Black Friday a day early, several large retailers are being criticized for eating away at Thanksgiving Day, a traditional time for family gatherings, feasting and reflection. Whidbey residents can easily avoid the madness and keep the holidays merry by shopping on the island. Whidbey Island has an abundance of unique shops and is great for thoughtful gift items all season long.
Under weighty public pressure, the Island County Commissioners this week voted unanimously not to temporarily hamstring a special pot of money used for land preservation. This was a good decision and the commissioners should be congratulated for their willingness to put aside differing philosophies concerning growth and development to reach a compromise. The board also demonstrated that it does listen to the pleas of constituents, when they are loud enough.
Tomorrow, millions of people across the country will be gathering with friends, family, or both, for good food and good company. No doubt, many will also reflect on the things they are thankful for. To get the ball rolling, here’s a short gratitude list from the crew at the South Whidbey Record.
To the Board of Island County Commissioners: we are organizations that work on behalf of public recreation, habitat conservation, shore access, and animal welfare. We urge the board to continue funding the Conservation Futures Fund at its current level, and not reduce funding or freeze acquisitions.
Politics is a blood sport on Whidbey Island. Within weeks of my arrival here nearly nine months ago, I managed to upset the local Tea Party supporters and quickly landed on their long list of “enemies.”
As I stressed in campaigning for mayor, our priorities for 2014 are economic development, enhanced communications, and delivery of local public works. The recent series of community forums stressed economic development and renewal. The challenge now is to build on these efforts over the next year, focusing on diversifying our employment base. Langley has an exciting tourist, arts, retail and entertainment base, to which we can add a vibrant light industrial zone, and the recruitment of knowledge workers and their families to Langley
The South Whidbey High School Falcon volleyball team returned home from its first state tournament in 10 years this past weekend. Unfortunately, it was without the most coveted of titles, the state championship.