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June 2014 Vol. 27 No. 6

Est. 1988

An edition of the Kitsap Sun

Ins & outs in downtowns Special focus on commercial real estate, pages 3-14

Inside Harrison moving to Silverdale hub | 4 Transforming empty big-box sites | 5 Q&A with Wes Larson | 10

The Kitsap Peninsula Business Journal Post OfďŹ ce Box 259 Bremerton, WA 98337

Presorted Standard U.S. POSTAGE PAID PERMIT NO. 76 Bremerton, WA 98337 CAR-RT Presort


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Business Calendar Do you have an announcement about a business event? Please email it at least two weeks in advance to katrina. dahlke@kitsapsun.com. Include a brief description, date, time, location, and phone number and/or email contact for information.

Success This webinar helps with effective planning for your nonprofit, and working on getting real-world results as presented by Maria Marsala. Where: Your office/conference room for the webinar. When: 10 to 11 a.m. Info: elevatingyourbusiness. com/nonprofit

Tuesday, June 3, 17, 24 Good Morning Kitsap County Come and join Silverdale Chamber of Commerce for some conversation and Q&A. Where: Hop Jack’s, Silverdale When: 7:30 to 9 a.m. Info: silverdalechamber.com

Tuesday, June 3 Business Start-Up Workshop & Orientation Topics will cover marketing, pricing, selling, sales projection and more. This is the prequel to an eight-week workshop starting June 10. Where: Kitsap Community Resource Building When: 6 to 8:30 p.m. Info: kcr.org

Tuesday, Wednesday June 3-4 Modern Collision Rebuild & Service 40th Anniversary Stop by for refreshments to celebrate the years the Strom family and their business have served the community. Where: 9270 Miller Road, Bainbridge Island When: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Info: 206-842-8053

Tuesdays, June 3, 10, 17, 24 Tap Your Leadership Style Presented by two professionals for four informal sessions following the book “The Work of Leaders.” Please register for this event. Where: OfficeXpats, Bainbridge Island When: noon to 1 p.m. Info: officexpats.com/exploringleadership-styles

Friday, June 6 Nonprofit Roadmap to

Saturday, June 7 Equine Experiential Learning and Psychotherapy Open House For mental health care providers, educators, school counselors and others who would like to experience the power horses have to help heal trauma and improve social/emotional and personal leadership skills. Meet the professional staff and explore how equine experiential work might enhance your work with your clients and students. Where: 12620 Willamette Meridian, Silverdale When: 1 to 3 p.m. Info: drea.b.bowen@gmail.com

Wednesday, June 18 NUWC Keyport Industry Day Learn about NUWC Keyport, the mission and areas where industry can contribute. There will be an overview of the organization and opportunities to meet with government personnel, contractors and suppliers/ vendors. The networking social will be June 17 at Silverdale Beach Hotel from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Please register for this event. Where: Naval Undersea Museum When: 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Info: eventbrite.com/e/2014nuwc-keyport-industry-dayregistration-10619899405

Thursday, June 19 Practical Advice for Securing Personal and Business Data While there is no such thing as absolute security, you can take a number of concrete, practical steps to ensure

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you and your business are protected. Dameon D. WelchAbernathy will give users and businesses advice on both technical aspects and measures they can take to protect their data. He will cover topics such as the recent Heartbleed threat, two-factor authorization, password managers, social media and

data storage in the cloud. Where: Poulsbo City Hall When: 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Info: 206-984-3509

Tuesday, June 24 Prime Outreach: Being a Subcontractor, Part 1 Connect and learn from a prime contractor who has experience working with

Naval Base Kitsap on large projects. Learn about what it takes and gain insight into work as a subcontractor. Registration required. Where: Kitsap Economic Development Alliance, 4312 Kitsap Way #103, Bremerton When: 4 to 6 p.m. Info: 360-377-9499

Wednesday, June 25 Social Media for Government Contracting Learn about social media as a marketing tool for small businesses. Where: Kitsap Economic Development Alliance, 4312 Kitsap Way #103, Bremerton When: 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Info: 360-377-9499


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ALSO IN THIS ISSUE • Columnist Dan Weedin on business strategy, 26

• Columnist Julie Tappero on human resources, 27 • Longtime owner selling grocery store in Kingston, 17 • Car reviews, 34-35 CORRECTION The list of Kitsap Peninsula banking institutions and branch locations on page 37 of the May issue of the Kitsap Peninsula Business Journal included an out-of-date listing for the American West Bank branch on Bainbridge Island. HomeStreet Bank acquired that branch, located at 921 Hildebrand Lane, from AmericanWest bank in December 2013. Also, the Boeing Employees’ Credit Union (BECU) branch in Silverdale is no longer in the Safeway store on Bucklin Hill Road. BECU’s financial center is located in the Towne Centre at 9995 Silverdale Way NW.

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INTRODUCTION | DAVID NELSON

Commercial development anchored in community The cliché is that it’s better to be lucky than good. I prefer to believe in coincidence, and in planning news coverage we’ll occasionally have a story that’s a square peg show up when we have a square hole. That was the case in late May, when Harrison Medical Center announced it will consolidate hospital operations on its Silverdale campus in the coming four years. That $240 million expansion project, which still needs formal approval by the hospital’s board, coupled with a major change at its current Bremerton campus when the hospital relocates, primarily means a great deal to the region’s health care system — but also significantly affects the real estate market. And commercial real estate was already planned as the focus of this edition of the Kitsap Peninsula Business Journal. I live and work in Bremerton. That’s probably why the most common initial reaction I’ve heard has been speculation over

what will become of the hillside overlooking Port Washington Narrows where Harrison and a number of associated medical offices sit. That neighborhood has a number of vacancies already, and the conventional wisdom would hold that more are on the way as our health care hub migrates north — if that hasn’t already occurred, in fact. On the other hand, I was sitting in the room when Harrison CEO Scott Bosch made the initial public announcement, and I can tell you that no point was emphasized as passionately as when he said that Harrison will not abandon Bremerton. There’s no sense yet of what that may look like, but it’s a strong statement. And Bosch, like a handful of Harrison board members, is a Bremerton resident himself, so I’m going to assume there’s some personal interest in ensuring the blocks bordered by Lower Wheaton, Cherry Avenue, Clare and Callahan don’t become a graveyard of empty buildings. The hospital’s Bremerton plan is a story for another day. But I’ll note two things. First, the city of Bremerton’s public works project to rebuild Lower Wheaton with wid-

URBAN DEVELOPMENT | CAREY BOZEMAN The Kitsap Peninsula Business Journal is published by the Kitsap Sun the first week of every month, and distributed to business addresses through Kitsap County, North Mason and Gig Harbor. Brent Morris, Publisher

brent.morris@kitsapsun.com David Nelson, Editorial Director david.nelson@kitsapsun.com Tim Kelly, Managing Editor tim.kelly@kitsapsun.com editor@kpbj.com

Mike Stevens, Marketing Director mstevens@kitsapsun.com Jeremy Judd, Digital Director jeremy.judd@kitsapsun.com For inquires to receive the Kitsap Peninsula Business Journal at your business, contact Circulation Sales Director Hugh Hirata at 360-7925247 or hugh.hirata@kitsapsun.com. To advertise in the Kitsap Peninsula Business Journal, contact Michael Stevens at 360-7923350. TO SUBMIT NEWS: Tim Kelly, Managing Editor tim.kelly@kitsapsun.com 360.377-3711, ext. 5359 Standard mail postage to be paid at Bremerton, WA POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Kitsap Sun, PO Box 259, Bremerton, WA 98337-1413 © 2014 Kitsap Peninsula Business Journal / Kitsap Sun ISSN 1050-3692 VOLUME 27, NO. 6

Creating vibrant downtowns Downtowns are the most important neighborhood in any city. They are 24-hour urban neighborhoods where people work, shop, live, and meet for business or social events. People hang out in wonderful public spaces, visit museums, go to concerts and lectures, and check out books at the downtown library. They are the heart of any city, they reflect the culture of the city, speak to the leadership of the city, they drive the economy of the city and they represent what people think about the city. Cities attract clusters of people in science and engineering, architecture and design, education, arts, music, and entertainment, whose economic function is to create new ideas, new technology, and new creative content. Downtowns create density, diversity, and attract well-educated people. I love cities and have been a student of what makes cities work for over 30 years, beginning when I was a young city councilman on the Bellevue City Council (I later became a three-time mayor of the city). At the time we were making decisions on the development of an emerging downtown that would eventually become one of the most prosperous and well-planned downtowns in the United States. I continued my love of cities when I became mayor of Bremerton, and worked to help revitalize a downtown that

had once been thriving but had been in economic and social decline for 20 years. Both of these wonderful experiences helped demonstrate to me the value of downtowns and the impact they have on our society, and helped develop my love of downtowns. There are 250 cities in Washington. Over 70 percent of state residents live within a city. Cities are where most of the jobs are located, where people go to school, where they get their health care, and where we locate downtowns. Cities drive the economy of the state and healthy downtowns drive the economy of the cities. I have always believed that if the state Legislature gave more support to downtown redevelopment, we would have a much healthier state economy and then might be able to appropriately fund the education and transportation needs of the state with the additional revenue coming from viable downtowns. In looking at Kitsap County, we are blessed with four cities and Silverdale, which should probably be a city, and with the economic opportunities that come with healthy cities. The economy of Kitsap County is directly tied to the health and viability of the four downtowns and Silverdale. The folks who want to see a growing economy in Kitsap County, who want more goodpaying jobs, and increased revenue to provide better services, should look no farther than our downtowns. They are the cornerstone of our local economy. One great example of how cities attract

er sidewalks, more lighting, bicycle lanes and improved intersections, coincidentally began a week after the hospital’s announcement. Second, as you’ll read in an article (page 5) in this edition’s special section, Harrison, like a few other local companies, realtors and architects, has some experience in taking a shell of a departed business and finding a new use that fits financial needs, company workflow and, hopefully, the community’s aesthetic development. This is a nationwide trend, from suburbs to cities. Former Bremerton Cary Bozeman writes below about his belief that community development comes from commercial real estate development that focuses on a city’s core, and we check the pulse of each of our downtowns inside. And Wes Larson, well versed in local development with projects across the peninsula, talked with KPBJ editor Tim Kelly (page 10) about his firm’s philosophy of financial success through community pride and ownership. Harrison’s bet on health care in Silverdale captured the community’s attention, and through the fall plans for development in both Central Kitsap and Bremerton will come into focus. The hospital is by no means alone in its investment, and hopefully will have plenty of company in both the continuing real estate evolution and economic success of the entire region. That’s going to take some amount of luck, but it’s reassuring to know we have some minds behind it that are also pretty good. economic development and jobs is to look at both Amazon and Microsoft, two of the most successful companies in the world. Both originally located in cities — Amazon in downtown Seattle and Microsoft in downtown Bellevue. (Microsoft has since moved to Redmond, but leases many buildings in downtown Bellevue.) So why did these two great companies locate in these downtowns? First, cities are where most, if not all, well-educated young people like to live and raise their families. Companies can recruit to cities with vibrant downtowns because these people enjoy the culture of an active downtown, they like to take public transportation, go to the farmers markets, have coffee in local bakeries, and most of all enjoy the social diversity urban downtowns offer in terms of lifestyle and interesting people. I was at the University Village last week in Seattle’s U District, one of the many urban areas I consider “downtowns” located within that city. It was a nice day and the number of people enjoying the shops, meeting in small sidewalk cafés, and walking with their children was breathtaking. It is such a vibrant atmosphere, it felt so Seattle, and made me remember how much I loved living in Seattle. I contrast this with Silverdale, which is also a retail center, but totally dominated by automobiles, parking lots, and a lack of quality outdoor public spaces. It reminds me of the challenges and opportunity we have to reinvent Silverdale into a quality urban downtown. Hopefully in the next few years county leadership will begin the transformation of this retail center into something much different that can be ecSEE BOZEMAN | 14


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Kitsap Peninsula’s downtowns brisk with activity By Rodika Tollefson KPBJ contributor

From Gig Harbor to Bainbridge Island, downtowns appear to prove that the economic recovery is giving small businesses their due. If commercial real estate activity seems sporadic in most cities, it’s because the number of building vacancies is smaller — in contrast to several years ago. Bainbridge Island is a good example. Steve Sutorius, who owns Wildernest outdoor store on Winslow and The Gear Stash on Bjune Drive, said when he opened six years ago, the vacancy rate was an estimated 20 percent. But in the past six to 12 months, that number has shrunk significantly and the empty storefronts are fewer. “There’s not much available, and that’s good for business,” said Sutorius, who is vice president of the Bainbridge Island Downtown Association. “When the stores are full, it creates a vibe that shows Winslow is open for business.” One of the notable empty spots is in the Island Gateway complex, home to the new Bainbridge Island Museum of Art. A 1,200-square-foot retail spot has been open for a few months in the so-called Building B, the former site of Eagle Harbor Market. But property owner Asani Development Corp. says the vacancy is not an accident. “We are getting a lot of interest but we are very selective about the business we’d like in that space,” said Andrew Lonseth, Asani director. “To prosper, it will need to appeal to multiple demographics and be a lively business that is intriguing to locals as well as tourists. We’d rather have the right tenant later than the wrong tenant now.” The vacancy is the last at Island Gateway, located at the corner of Highway 305

ON THE COVER The view along Harborview Drive in downtown Gig Harbor. Photo by Ric Hallock

PHOTOS BY MEEGAN M. REID/KITSAP SUN

A new craft beer taproom will open in June in the Island Gateway complex, the newest addition to downtown Bainbridge. and Winslow Way. Avalara expanded earlier this year into the second floor of Building B after outgrowing its space next door. (Lonseth said the second floor was designed for a restaurant but Avalara really needed the space.) Bainbridge Bakers recently occupied half of the first floor. In business for 28 years, the bakery opened at Island Gateway in March as a second location. A new craftbeer taproom, Ale House at Winslow, is expected to open next door later in June. The building has a rooftop events deck that can accommodate about 200 people. It has already been reserved for various summer events. Ale House and Bainbridge Bakers will have priority booking for the space, which includes a small service kitchen, a large fireplace and a glass canopy. The entryway and the landscaping at the development were due to be complete by early June, and the area will no longer look like a construction site, Lonseth said. A water feature and patio furniture will add to the appeal, he said.

“We feel the plaza will be a draw,” he said, adding, “The museum has been a phenomenal success and drawing people to other businesses too.” Other new faces on the island include Plum, a home and garden store that opened on Winslow Way in May, Peter Ross Fine Jewelry at Madrone Lane and Café Trios, which opened at the east end of Winslow. Café Trios, technically, is not a new kid on the block. The café operated for about a year and a half before closing in 2009, and then the building stood empty. Angela Veeder, whose family owns the property, and Michael Doctor reopened in the same spot in May — and kept the name. Another diner that expanded to Winslow is J’aime Les Crepes, a popular Kingston business. Located on Madrone Lane next to Mora ice cream shop, the creperie offers much of the same menu as in Kingston. Owner Paul Pluska said he wanted to be on the island when he moved from Seattle more than 10 years ago, but ended up in Kingston because he couldn’t find a spot. While being a vendor at various events over the past decade, he consistently saw Bainbridge as the best market. Last year, Pluska went up and down Winslow on a scouting mission. He loved the piazza atmosphere and the pedestrian traffic at the Mora building. So he wrote the property owner, expressing his interest should a vacancy come up. Lucky for him, it did. “It’s been steady. The biggest difference

is the traffic pattern,” he said after two weeks at the new café. J’aime Les Crepes will not sell ice cream cones but still offers specialty ice creams with crepes (with ingredients such lavender, which Pluska grows himself). The most notable difference between the two locations is perhaps the interior — the one on the island offers ample seating.

A new building has replaced an old one that was torn down last year between two others on Front Street in Poulsbo, but the space is still waiting for business tenants.

Poulsbo Things have been steady in downtown Poulsbo, though a few open spaces still linger. The newest addition to the north end of Front Street is the Carrie Goller Gallery, which moved in April into the storefront that used to house Silver Lining Jewelry. Around the corner from the gallery, the building where the Himalayan Chutney Restaurant and Bar closed last year will SEE DOWNTOWNS | 8

New Silverdale hospital will become Harrison’s hub Plan to move out of Bremerton campus leaves both communities assessing long-term impacts Kitsap Sun staff report

Harrison Medical Center’s decision to build a new hospital in Silverdale and move out of its flagship campus in Bremerton will have substantial impacts on both communities as Harrison carries out its plan over the next four years. Construction of the roughly $240 million hospital would allow Harrison to merge its acute-care campuses in Silverdale, cutting duplicated costs and offering a more central location for patients. Harrison’s new affiliate, Franciscan Health System, will help finance the build-out. Harrison CEO Scott Bosch, who is retiring at the end of July after overseeing the institution’s move to affiliate with Franciscan, said Harrison will continue offer-

ing outpatient services in Bremerton, potentially including an urgent care clinic. Harrison officials hope that after the relocation, other organizations can repurpose the hospital that opened in 1965 in East Bremerton. The new strategic plan — dubbed Vision 2020 — was announced May 23. Bosch stressed Harrison is determined to maintain a presence in Bremerton. “The board is not willing to abandon Bremerton,” Bosch said. “We are not going to leave Bremerton. We’re going to be here in a significant way.” Still, the economic impacts of closing the Bremerton campus — where almost 1,300 people work and tens of thousands receive medical care each year — will ripple through the city in the years to come.

Harrison Medical Center has announced plans to move out of its main campus that has been in Bremerton since 1965 and build a new hospital in Silverdale. The transition will take place over the next four years.

“Silverdale’s gain is Bremerton’s loss,” said Bremerton City Council president Greg Wheeler. “It will impact Bremerton, but I don’t know in what way yet.” Carlos Jara, president of the Downtown Bremerton Association and co-owner of Toro

Lounge, said he was saddened by the news and felt it would have “dire consequences for not only those that need quality medical services.” “Moving the bulk of their employees out SEE HARRISON | 14


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Thinking outside the empty ‘big box’ Companies get creative to transform buildings in wake of retail vacancies vations, sometimes the unexpected happens. After completion in 2012, Harrison had to do some revamping after people moved in and started using the space. An additional $800,000 was

By Jennifer Hayes KPBJ contributor

When Harrison Medical Center wanted to relocate its support services such as human resources and payroll from its cramped Bremerton campus, the organization made an unusual choice. Instead of breaking ground on new construction or leasing existing office space, the hospital system redesigned a building formerly used as a go-cart track and Michael’s craft store. With an investment of $3.6 million, Harrison revamped the former big-box store to create private conference rooms and open workstations, and enclose a storage supply warehouse in back. “We got the space faster than if we had built it ourselves, we were able to use an existing building in town and it met our needs really well,” said Jim Alvarez, executive director of support services for Harrison. “There’s also social responsibility. If you can use a (big-box site) in a new way, you should try.” As large retailers have gone bankrupt or moved out, once bustling shopping areas have been left with outsized spaces to fill. And with some Wall Street analysts pointing to the demise of mega-size stores, most won’t be refilled with large retailers anytime soon. Retail sites remain unfilled across the Kitsap Peninsula, but ideas that range from Harrison Medical Center (consolidated offices) to North Kitsap Fishline (nonprofit food bank) to Gig Harbor’s Seven Seas Brewing (production and retail in a former grocery store) have helped rejuvenate some bigbox locations that could have become eyesores. FOCUS ON WORKFLOW To relocate nearly all of its administrative support services, Harrison looked at a number of sites, including the former Kmart building on the east side of Wheaton Way, to find a site

LARRY STEAGALL/KITSAP SUN

North Kitsap Fishline bought the former Poulsbo RV property and converted the former showroom into a store for its food bank. that would work for employees and the organization’s needs. Alvarez said Harrison chose the former Kart Trax Formula Racing facility on Wheaton Way in East Bremerton because the property owner offered a good lease rate to make the location work. Harrison leases 42,000 square feet but pays for only 22,000 of it at $7.70 per square foot, including maintenance fees. The space was repurposed from an expansive retail floor to 158 workstations, private meeting rooms, and a supply warehouse with a loading dock. Harrison spent $86.67 per square foot to update, repair and reconfigure the space. Alvarez advises that companies considering a reuse of a retail or big-box site focus on the work flow as much as the design. “You have to look at how people will use the space, not just how many cubicles will fit in there,” he said. Also consider that safety may be a concern for some employees in a location with empty buildings. In the beginning, there was unease about the neighborhood and whether it was safe, Alvarez said. Harrison installed cameras on the building, and there have been no problems so far, he said. And, as with many reno-

spent to rework some of the office flow. Overall, Alvarez is pleased with the redesign of the former retail site as office and warehouse space. “It went really well,” he said.

FUTURE PLANNING

In May, North Kitsap Fishline moved from its smaller downtown location in Poulsbo to a 5,500-square-foot building on Liberty Lane, which was

once the site of Poulsbo RV. To redesign the open showroom floor plan, volunteers and businesses provided “sweat equity” and Fishline invested $70,000 to create a grocery store set-up for its food bank users, built offices for its administrative staff, and developed private conference SEE BIG BOX | 7


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Kitsap County to hold public hearings on sign code update The Kitsap County Planning Commission is conducting two public hearings to accept public comment on the Kitsap County Draft Sign Code. The hearings will be Tuesday, June 3, and Monday, June 16. The June 3 session will be from 6-9 p.m. at the Kitsap County Administration Building, 619 Division St. in Port Orchard. The second hearing will be from 5:308:30 p.m. at Poulsbo City Hall, 200 NE Moe St., in the City Council chambers. “The draft sign code is designed to foster economic development by providing predictability while preserving the high level of visual quality of Kitsap County,” said Larry Keeton, director of the Department of Community Development. “Our goal is to

adopt a user-friendly sign code recognizing the preferences of Kitsap County residents and businesses.” The Planning Commission holds these hearings to help prepare a recommendation to the county commissioners. The commissioners will provide an additional open comment period and schedule a hearing before taking final action on the proposed updates. For more information, or to comment or ask questions, go to the 2014 Sign Code Update webpage online at tinyurl.com/KitsapSCUpdate. Those without Internet access can call Kitsap 1 360-.337-5777 to provide comments, ask questions, or have additional information sent to them.

Bainbridge extends temporary ordinance on pot businesses

ing, the council extended a citywide ban on collective gardens for growing medical marijuana. The temporary ordinance also limits licensed marijuana retailers to the Island Center, Lynwood Center and Rolling Bay neighborhoods, and allows growing and processing marijuana only in the business/industrial district. Another provision requires that marijuana production use new, renewable energy generated on Bainbridge Island.

After much discussion about regulation of legal marijuana businesses, the Bainbridge City Council unanimously approved a temporary, six-month ordinance. The council thinks six months will be sufficient time to come up with a permanent ordinance governing the production and sale of marijuana. By unanimous vote at its May 12 meet-


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COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE

The exterior of the Harrison office building, which used to be a Michaels craft store.

PHOTOS BY LARRY STEAGALL/KITSAP SUN

Harrison Medical Center reconfigured a large vacant building on Wheaton Way in Bremerton that had been retail space into offices for its support services staff. BIG BOX | F ROM 5

rooms for meetings with clients. With the tall ceilings and expansive space, lights were hung from the ceiling to generate more intimacy and banks of refrigerator coolers were used as walls to break up the large space, said Mary Nader, executive director of North Kitsap Fishline. On 1.7 acres, the building and land can provide room for growth in the future, Nader said. One idea is to extend services for client enrichment. Classes, coaching, resource rooms, and gardening instruction could be offered in addition to emergency services. In addition, guest agencies could use spare rooms at the site for workshops or meetings to introduce critical support services to Fishline clients. Nader is excited about re-imagining the use of the property and expanding services in new ways. “We’re like kids. We’ve never had this chance before,” she said. Prior to moving, Fishline looked for a new building for five years. The organization grew out of its previous location of 3,100 square feet as demand continually increased for its services. The nonprofit had a list of “must-haves” for the new site including affordable price, proximity to the city’s core, room to grow, and an ability to create confidentiality for private meetings with clients. Fishline liked the former Poulsbo RV site the most, but after years of vacancy, the property had turned

into a distressed one, noted Nader. The owner made improvements and Fishline purchased the building for $900,000. The organization has no plans for the older property in downtown Poulsbo, which Fishline still owns, but it could decide to sell that building to help pay off the mortgage of the new property, Nader said. NEW VISION FOR REPURPOSED OFFICES

To keep costs down for redevelopment of the former go-kart space, Harrison worked with Rice Fergus Miller, a Bremerton architecture firm that specializes in revamping former retail sites into office space. In addition to Harrison’s location on Wheaton Way, Rice Fergus Miller has redesigned a former Good Guys electronics store in Silverdale for The Doctors Clinic corporate offices, revamped a former 36,000-square-foot big-box for the King County Housing Authority office in Tukwila, and reclaimed a former 25,000-squarefoot Sears automotive center for its own corporate office and studio in downtown Bremerton. “Lots of these types of buildings can be repurposed for office space, special purpose housing, and outpatient medical uses. They are well-built and already have water, power and parking,” said Mike Miller, senior principal for Rice Fergus Miller. Miller estimates the cost to redesign and rebuild is similar to new construction. Imagination is really

the key to renewing a formerly plain retail site. For the Doctors Clinic, the architecture firm designed holes in the walls to bring in natural light, added skylights and created “acoustic lighting clouds” to add intimacy to the space. In the case of Harrison’s location on Wheaton Way, the firm created common-use areas, added lighting and visu-

al variation with different heights. “(The spaces) have to be comfortable and pleasing with good lighting and places to congregate,” Miller said. For Rice Fergus Miller’s headquarters in Bremerton, the firm focused on making the former automotive center highly energy-efficient, SEE BIG BOX | 13


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DOW N TOW NS | F ROM 4

soon be home to Slippery Pig Brewery. According to the brewery’s blog, the last day at the original location — a Poulsbo farm — was May 24, and the downtown brewery was expected to open in June. On the other end of Front Street, plans are in the works for another art gallery, which will showcase the work of renowned contemporary artists from around the country. The Magal and Louis Gallery will open in late July or early August next door to Bluewater Artworks Gallery and Framing. The building was completely remodeled by the Silverdale-based Mentor Co. in December 2011. The 1,200-square-foot gallery is being opened by Jean-Claude Louis, a renowned photographer who moved to Bainbridge Island a year ago, and his wife, Ella Magal. Louis, a native of France, has won many awards for his work and has been featured in various magazines, including National Geographic. He prints his photographs on brushed aluminum. He said Poulsbo was an attractive place because the merchants have been working to make it a destination, especially downtown. The couple have selected four other award-winning artists whose work will be sold at the gallery, which will have a contemporary art theme. Another storefront that is due to be filled soon is the new building completed recently between Tizley’s Europub and The Closet Transfer. Erika and Jim Cecil, part-owners of the building, will move their Boomer’s Pet Boutique to the first floor of the building from its current location on the north end of Front Street. Erika Cecil said they’re waiting on finishing touches to be done but didn’t have a timeline yet. Their new location will more than double the space for the business, which has been downtown since 2011. Cecil said there have been discussions

with potential tenants for the second floor but no plans as of the end of May. As early as June, one more storefront will become vacant. After nearly a decade in business, the owner of Chantilly by the Bay is closing doors, citing family reasons. Among the vacant spaces is the former site of Liberty Bay Bakery and Café. Broker Matt Berg with Reid Property Management said there has been interest from several restaurants, including Mexican and Indian cuisine, as well as other businesses such as a game company and a furniture shop. He said the property has only been marketed since November even though it’s been vacant for more than a year, and he’s been getting inquiries every week or two.

Bremerton Bremerton’s downtown has the largest number of vacant buildings but several pockets have lately seen a rush of activity. The most notable is Fourth Street west of Pacific. New tenants include RockIt Roost and Fingers Duke. They will soon be followed by Horse and Cow, a restaurant and bar moving into the former El Coral spot. Fingers Duke, a design studio and screen-printing shop, moved in April into a 2,700-square foot space after two years at the Kitsap Mall. The company is four years old and got its start on Pacific Avenue. “We were looking to expand and have our own space,” said owner Derek Gress. “Over the last couple of years, Bremerton has had a lot more going for it and we wanted to be part of that. … The city has done a good job cleaning up (Fourth Street) and it’s up for the businesses to move in.” A few doors up, Isella Salon and Spa is getting ready to move across the street after seven years at its location. Owner Christina Jara bought the property and was waiting for remodeling to be completed, with an estimated move-in timeline of end of June. For RockIt Roost owners Hanah Reed

Millions

MEEGAN M. REID/KITSAP SUN

RockIt Roost is one of the new businesses on the spruced-up block of Fourth Street west of Pacific Avenue in downtown Bremerton. RockIt Roost moved from a spot in the Kitsap Mall in Silverdale to its new larger location on Fourth Street.

and Chuck Mitchell, comKitsap indicator ing to Bremerton in November was a dream come true. ALL TAXABLE SALES S The couple started out BY YEAR AND AREA in Silverdale in 2008 and Taxable sales are rebounding in most for the past two years had ole. The sales numbers Kitsap cities, and in the county as a whole. operated from the Kitsap include retail business, as well as many services, and Mall. Neither of their two industries like construction. Silverdale locations had Port Orchard sales were higher in 2013 than before the everything they wanted, recession. Other cities are still digging out. Mitchell said. The original Sales in unincorporated Kitsap (not pictured) are finally one was a bit small for the rebounding, reaching $1,484,550,187 in 2013, still well under retail shop and photo stuthe peak of $1,753,263,423 in 2007. dio, which caters to “kustom kulture.” remerton rt Orchard Orchar bridge Island Is Bremerton Port Poulsbo Bainbridge The mall space was even $736,559,636 smaller, and at neither one $800 Bremerton could they serve beer and wine, which had been part of the plan. 600 In Bremerton, RockIt $425,037,950 Roost has it all. Not only is Port Orchard the space double its origi400 nal location and triple that of the mall spot, it will be $343,821,844 200 able to accommodate a Bainbridge Island small lounge. $329,717,157 Mitchell said the plan is Poulsbo 0 to offer craft beer and spe2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 cialty wine, along with a light menu, most likely of SCRIPPS NEWSPAPERS paninis, salads and soups INFORMATION FROM WASH. DEPT. OF REVENUE (food is required for the lounge license). He hoped to open the lounge in mid-June. the West Sound Group, said she’s seeing a “We always wanted to be down here and lot of interest in the property. we were just watching and waiting for the “It’s a really great building,” she said. right time,” Mitchell said. “When the lease “Fourth Street is happening again.” came up at the mall, we felt the timing was Across the street, a couple of longtime varight.” cancies remain. What sold them was the activity they saw Among the empty downtown buildings on Fourth Street. Mitchell said they looked is the former headquarters of The Docall over downtown, and the west side of tors Clinic, which relocated to Silverdale in Fourth seemed alive — thanks to the re2009. The three-story, 15,000-square-foot cent improvements made by the city and building has had some contractors as tenthe traffic generated by the new movie theants for a while but has been empty in reater, SeeFILM Cinema. cent months. The property owner is plan“We’re really excited about what’s going ning a tentative façade remodel, accordon in the space. For the first time, we can ing to Reid’s Berg. The inside will be gutdo everything we wanted,” Mitchell said. ted and then the building will be marketed To make the Rockit Roost’s dream come to potential tenants. true, two businesses moved to different lo“We were hoping to create a restaurant cations nearby — Timothy Stimac Salon on the lower level so that it would use the and Spa and Flowers D’Amore. outdoor patio,” Berg said. Flowers D’Amore moved just a few doors The main level may be split into two reeast to what is now its third downtown lotail storefronts, and the idea of a studio or cation in 17 years. Owner Sandy Corbin an apartment has been discussed for the top said Fourth Street is “much prettier now,” floor. The plans are all tentative, Berg said. which helps attract more business. Next door, a 9,000-square-foot building Timothy Stimac, also downtown for 17 has been vacant for several years. Ownyears and at his third location now, said er Lou Weir ran an appliance shop for two the move worked well for his salon because decades in the building, which includes two he now has 2,500 square feet of space (vs. levels and a three-quarters basement. Al1,500 before), not to mention large windows though he retired from the shop long ago, he that he loves. still owns a couple of properties downtown. “The theater has been an awesome Finding someone to occupy the entire thing,” he said, adding that he also has a space has been challenging, Weir said, addsoft spot for the other side of Fourth Street. ing that he would consider dividing it. The east side of Fourth has been quiet as “The size makes it prohibitive for many far as real estate activity, but that may be prospective tenants,” he said. “It’s a goodabout to change. size building and for most businesses, it’s The former Rice Fergus Miller headquartoo much.” ters, east of the Roxy Theatre, was listed a Around the corner from Fourth on Pacouple of months ago and Lisa Phipps, real cific, downtown lost Claywerks Studio in estate broker and property manager with May. After 10 years in business (part of


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COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE The iconic Lighthouse restaurant has reopened on downtown Port Orchard’s waterfront after sitting vacant for a couple years. “More people are finding out we are back there,” he said. Mansour Samadpour, who owns the market property among several oththe Charleston District), owner Angela Perryman decided to close its doors. Property owner Amy Burnett, an artist who also owns the Amy Burnett Gallery inside the building, said she’s had discussions with exciting potential clients but nothing is official. Pacific Avenue, too, has several empty buildings that have been yearning for tenants for a long time. One of them is the 9,000-squarefoot Metro Building in the 800 block that at one time housed Lutheran Community Services. A remodel several years ago included a new roof and exterior and a gutted interior. Jennifer Mentor Mills of the Mentor Co. said the building is especially suitable for office space for a government-related business and it could accommodate a single tenant or up to four. “There’s ample adjacent parking — a rarity downtown,” she said. “With the recent completion of the work on Pacific Avenue, we expect a renewed interest in the space.” Pacific Avenue hasn’t been all quiet, either. The Navy Federal Credit Union signed a lease in April for 4,000 square feet in what’s known as the Tim Ryan Building (named so colloquially after its builder). The credit union is moving its Bremerton branch to the first floor of the building, whose owners have struggled to find tenants since its construction in 2008. The so-called D4 building (once occupied by Dimension 4 Inc.) is also seeing a flurry of activity. Recently moved in or soon-to-be tenants in the four-story, 22,000-square-foot building include two counselors, a healthcare business,

two IT firms including the Helpdesk Cavalry, Great Peninsula Conservancy and the Ross Michael hair salon (coming from Silverdale). A few spaces are still available, Phipps said. Also newly available is a spot for a small café at the Rice Fergus Miller headquarters on Fifth Street. “There’s so much opportunity in downtown Bremerton,” Phipps said. “You can’t get a better lease rate than downtown Bremerton right now.”

Port Orchard Like the other downtowns, Port Orchard’s Bay Street seems to be faring better than it did during the depths of the recession. But it’s a mixed bag of good news/bad news. The most recent good news includes the reopening of the iconic Lighthouse restaurant. Now named Robert Earl Lighthouse (after the father of the restaurant owner, Eric Smith), the restaurant had a soft opening in May. The building had been empty since Gino’s closed its doors about four years ago. Also newly open is the Port Orchard Public Market (see story, p. 30), which has been in the works for two years. For Carter’s Chocolates, the year-round market has become the main retail outlet. Owner Matt Carter recently relocated his own business from Bethel Road to the Westbay Center further up Bay Street, and had just received his kitchen permits at the end of May. He planned to have a small storefront at the new headquarters soon. Carter said traffic has been good since the market opened and he expected an influx during the upcoming Fathoms O’ Fun parade.

ers, also closed the sale in May on the former Myhre’s building. The iconic diner closed after a fire in 2011. No announcement has been made of potential new tenants or uses. The downtown dining scene is about to expand, too. A “tapas bar and Celtic gastropub” called The Swimdeck is getting ready to open on the corner across

from the Port Orchard Pavilion. Real estate broker Donn Hughes, whose Old Towne Realty is located on Bay Street, said The Swimdeck expects to open on June 22. He noted that the prices for many downtown properties have come down, which has attracted the attention of prospective buyers. The Myhre’s building was one

example. “Things are looking up,” he said. “If there are vacancies, they seem to be filling right back up.” Several properties on Bay Street are listed for sale, including the building currently occupied by the VFW post and the Geiger Building that’s home to Dragonfly Cinema. SEE DOWNTOWNS | 13


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Q&A: Sound West Group founder on return to his roots By Tim Kelly Kitsap Peninsula Business Journal

Wes Larson certainly has gone places in his career — make that careers. The Bremerton native and UW alum who once worked at the downtown Woolworth’s as a stock boy has lived in Japan, where he taught English and studied karate. (Larson currently teaches a youth karate class at a downtown Bremerton studio.) After going to graduate school Wes Larson in Arizona to get an MBA, he spent time in New York and Vienna, Austria, working in international banking; and when he and his wife, Daphne (who’s originally from Singapore and met Wes in New York), moved to Seattle in 1997 to be near his ailing father, Larson took evening classes at Seattle University and earned a law degree. With all that education and experience on his resumé, the well-traveled Larson came full circle several years ago back to his Kitsap County roots — and a new career in real estate investment and development. Those roots run deep, and Larson has a strong sense of place and his family’s history. In 1970, they moved from Bremerton to Silverdale (when the community had one traffic light on Silverdale Way, he notes) and lived on a 10-acre farm that today is the site of the AMC movie theater. It’s not far from the Tower Medical Center and the REI store that opened last year, two redevelopment projects managed by Larson and his partners in Sound West Group. He recalls how he used to go jogging by those properties when they were pasture land. A century ago in Bremer-

ton, his great-grandfather D.L. (Derward Lawton) Cady was the mayor, a philanthropist, and a local legend. Cady, who came to the Kitsap area in the 1890s and ran a general store in Brownsville, had a delivery horse named “Danger” who reportedly would make rounds towing a wagon throughout the area on his own, and return to the store when done. Larson was born in the house next door to where his great-grandfather lived for most of his life at the corner of Sixth Street and Broadway (“Right across the street used to be Milt’s Donuts,” he recalls.) Sound West Group has plans for an affordable housing development there that will be called the D.L. Cady Block, and Larson says construction could start next year. He’s also involved with a housing project at a historic Seattle site where his grandfather and namesake, Arthur Wesley Larson, made his mark. It’s not a Sound West Group project, but Larson and other partners plan to preserve the brick and terra cotta façade of the A.W. Larson building (circa 1924) while building a six-story apartment complex behind it. The building in the Eastlake neighborhood is adjacent to Union Bay Lofts, one of the first projects Larson helped develop after moving back to Seattle. Larson, who now lives in Seabeck, recently sat down for a Q&A session with the Kitsap Peninsula Business Journal to talk about Sound West Group’s real estate projects in his hometown of Bremerton and Kitsap County. KPBJ: What led you to return, first to Seattle in 1997 and then to Kitsap County in 2006, after living in New York and overseas during your career working in international banking?

Larson: It was a desire to go back home. I love this area. My father also played a factor. He was elderly, retired from the shipyard and he wasn’t well, so moving back here gave us the opportunity to live with him for the final years of his life; he passed away in 2006. It was also just the desire to come back and be a part of the community. There’s

a lot of change that’s occurred here, but I just feel like I identify so much with the history of this place. Being a part of the growth and evolution of it is something that, I think it adds a lot of meaning to life. So I think it’s really tied up in wanting to go back to a community … and contribute, and that goes beyond just developing real estate.

In Sound West our core principle is to develop communities … we like to do projects that have a community-building aspect to them. It’s just being a part of our hometown. KPBJ: You also taught environmental law as an adjunct professor at Seattle University (2002-04) and conducted Continuing Legal Education seminars.

What motivated you to pursue real estate investing and development over a career as a lawyer? I think it hearkens back to my roots. My father and grandfather were in construction. My grandfather came from Sweden, and back in the 1920s and ’30s he was a prominent contractor in Seattle. He worked on a lot of the buildings of note


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COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE We had talks off and on with a couple large tenants that were interested almost immediately after Dimension 4 left the space. And it’s a really high-quality space in that building; we’re re-

PHOTO COURTESY SOUND WEST GROUP

Wes Larson stands on Washington Avenue by the Manette Bridge in Bremerton, and across the street behind him is the property where Sound West Group will build the Spyglass Hill apartments. over there — what’s now the Starbucks headquarters building was the Sears building and originally the Seattle terminal building; I’ve got the old blueprints of that building in my garage. I always grew up with this legacy that was the buildings that he built, and my father, who ended up working in the shipyard for many years, was always a carpenter at heart, a builder. What appealed to me about real estate was being able to envision something, build it, and you get the satisfaction of seeing something you created. And so while I was involved in finance, banking and law, I think what really appealed to me was the entrepreneurial aspect of developing real estate and building buildings. So I think that too is kind of coming back to my roots. KPBJ: How did the idea come about for you and your wife, Daphne, to form Sound West Group with partners Mike Brown (of FPH Construction) and Lisa Phipps? How is SWG’s approach to acquiring, developing and managing commercial properties, and working with investors, different from conventional real estate investment and development? Larson: The idea really came from Mike’s and my long-term relationship and our co-investment together in projects like the medical/ dental building (in Silverdale), even before I moved back to Kitsap County. But it also came from a business model that is used in nationally syndicated real

estate transactions, and that is where you have an equity partnership opportunity for accredited investors who are looking to invest … and are looking for income properties and have those properties managed for them. Our partners, probably 80 percent are local and another 20 percent from out of state or even out of the country. And we are the lead investor in all of our projects, so our interest is on the line. The difference between that and the opportunity to invest in a real estate investment trust or some other large fund where you can acquire an interest, … is that we’re local, No. 1, so everything we do is in the West Puget Sound. And then secondly, we are all under one roof, all of the aspects of our company. This is what differentiates us from other real estate companies, is that we do acquisition, we do development, we do the construction, we do the management, we do the brokerage. The idea is we keep everything under one roof so we’re able to provide control and accountability in all aspects of what we do. That was really important to me. My prior experience, whether it was in banking or practicing law, dealing with these nationally syndicated real estate programs was that they were often overloaded, very expensive, and then were managed by third-party managers and third-party construction companies. And they were properties that were located in Kansas City or Mi-

ami, and … it was a disconnect. So our goal here is to create something that was unique and focused in our own backyard; people can touch base, you can drive by it. And in real estate, unlike any other asset class, there is a pride of local ownership factor to it. You can see it, you can see the change developing in your own backyard, the capital at work. KPBJ: What is the current occupancy of the former D4 building in downtown Bremerton that your partnership purchased in 2003 and renovated extensively in 2005? (Dimension 4, Inc. closed its business in January 2012.)

ally proud of it. Since then we’ve taken a one-step-at-atime approach. We’ve had (some smaller) tenants come in. Now we’ve got General Dynamics, their subsid-

iary NASSCO (a shipbuilding company based in San Diego), they just moved in (in May) on the fourth floor. They’re also planning to lease the entire second floor SEE Q&A | 12


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COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE Q& A | F ROM 11

in the building in September. And then we’d probably be about 75 percent occupied. Back to almost where we were … when we bought it in ’03. We bought it for $1.2 million, and we put about $3 million into it, which wasn’t anticipated; going into it I think our budget for renovation was maybe $1 million. The result is, though, it’s a beautiful building. (A new salon is going in on the streetlevel space that had been occupied by The Bozeman Group until that firm recently moved out.) KPBJ: What is the status/construction schedule for the Spyglass Hill apartments project (between Washington and Highland avenues near the Manette Bridge)? Larson: In September we’re going to be in there to demo, and grade and clear. There’s a lot of work to be done in that regard, because we acquired the Hoffman parcel (site of two dilapidated old houses on the north edge of the Spyglass site). That adds about another 20 percent more square footage to the site. We’re not going to increase the unit count any, but it will give us more parking. We’re working right now on our permit package (and completing financing arrangements.) The second design review board meeting will be upcoming in a matter of weeks, and we’re fine-tuning our design right now to incorporate the Hoffman parcel. We’re well down the tracks with Rice Fergus Miller … we haven’t started the

“I think downtown Bremerton is an opportunity that is very timely, and probably of all the places you could invest right now in Kitsap County, I think there’s the most upside.” Wes Larson construction drawings yet, but we’re finetuning the design. We will will be working with Rush Construction. .They do a lot of multi-family (developments) … and they’ll be able to build it cost-effectively and also efficiently. KPBJ: What new projects do you have in the acquisition or active development phase? Anything similar to the Tower Medical Center or REI projects on the horizon? Larson: We’ve got in the final stages of construction right now in Silverdale, at Blaine and Ridgetop, on a 14,000-squarefoot building that will be the site of Silverdale Wellness. We’re working actively with Olympic Property Group as a partner on a potential (housing) project on Bainbridge Island. We’ve been working closely with them, and whether it’s this particular project or another one, we’ll do something together in

the future. In Poulsbo, we are the capital partner in a 128-unit single-family housing project called Somerset. That’s off Viking Way. Our focus has been on multi-family (projects), apartments like Spyglass, medical office, and single-family housing. That’s where we see the need and the opportunities. REI was a unique opportunity to come in and acquire what was really a distressed asset, reposition that, and transition with a national credit tenant. But we’re not actively out there looking for retail space to develop. KPBJ: What’s your assessment of the overall commercial real estate market in Kitsap County now, as the broader economy seems to continue recovering slowly from the recession? Larson: I think that the market has got some opportunity in it, in the core areas. Obviously Silverdale and (North Kitsap) are much more strongly positioned to attract investment and growth. But I think there’s a great opportunity right now in downtown Bremerton. We’re seeing more activity in our properties down here — interest not only from prospective tenants, but partners who are interested in investing with us. As recently as six months ago I probably wouldn’t have said that downtown Bremerton is poised as it is now, or we’re at that tipping point, but I think you can sense it. There’s an energy in the air; there’s a renewed vigor and interest in the downtown area. It’s from private companies who want to be here, and are looking at the growth in the shipyard, the fact that the shipyard is

adding 5,000 employees. So I think downtown Bremerton is an opportunity that is very timely, and probably of all the places you could invest right now in Kitsap County, I think there’s the most upside. Plus there’s a pride factor that, you know, I think that all of us as downtown Bremertonians have, that we really want to see this area come back and we’ve been working so hard for so many years. KPBJ: What is most interesting or satisfying to you about what Sound West Group is doing in Kitsap County? Larson: To see a project come to fruition and really make a change in a neighborhood. And I can look at a number of our projects, to see the vision realized, and to see jobs created, to see activity on the streets, to see more tax revenue, and to see the synergies and the spinoff that comes from projects that we do. You look at Pacific Avenue, we were the first private developer — this is going back to ’03 or ’04 — to come down and invest a large sum of money in that area (in the D4 building), probably before we should have. That was way before, probably five years before the build-up of the Bremerton waterfront began. We knew that that was coming, and we thought we had a good opportunity. Had we known in retrospect, given the amount of money we put into it, we probably wouldn’t have done it. But it all worked out in the long run, and … that project, we think, kind of set the pace, or set the tone for what was to follow in the downtown area.


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COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE BIG BOX | F ROM 7

too. It uses 70 percent less energy than a typical office building, saving one mortgage payment a year in energy costs, Miller said. The renovation cost $105 per square foot. Why is it important to reuse a large retail or big-box building? “It’s part of history and the building stock. If an empty building can be made useful, that’s a good thing,” said Miller. RECREATING A VITAL CITY CORE With more retail vacancies on main corridors and in city centers, rethinking empty locations is also on the minds of realtors, economic development leaders and government officials. An informal group of local commercial realtors and brokers, which calls itself Kitsap DOW N TOW NS | F ROM 9

Also listed for sale is MoonDogs Too restaurant and bar, whose owner, Darryl Baldwin, recently succumbed to cancer. The sale listing specifies that the business and the property must be bought together, but the price at the end of May was $850,000, compared with $1.05 million two months before. The Bay Street storefront where Shabulous has been for 13 months will also be available around mid-June. The business sells custom-painted “shabby chic” furniture, and owner Karen Johnson also offers classes. She said she decided to take a new location on Bethel Road because it will give her three times the space — including plenty of room for teaching classes and lots of parking. “We were doing so well and grew so fast, we outgrew that location,” she said.

Gig Harbor Gig Harbor’s waterfront hasn’t had a lot of movement in the past few months — but

Gig Harbor trolley program, promotional event receive Main Street awards The Pierce Transit Trolley, of the Get Around Gig Harbor Program, received the Community Partnership award at Washington Main Street’s Excellence on Main Awards ceremony on May 7 in Wenatchee. The ceremony was held in conjunction with RevitalizeWA, Washington State’s Preservation and Main Street Conference.

Commercial Investment Brokers, meets once a month to review and discuss vacancies across the county. One of the topics of discussion is about re-imagining different uses for empty properties to encourage investment, attract new tenants and enhance economic vitality, said John Powers, executive director of the Kitsap Economic Development Alliance. Ideas have included rezoning commercial property to light industrial manufacturing and opening retail spaces for part-time public use such as farmers markets. Powers said there could also be an opportunity to tap into Kitsap’s growing population of over 70-year-olds. He considers them a “retirement class” because they are more financially healthy than previous generations. To meet future population growth of the over-70 set, a big-box retail store could

be converted to senior housing with an activity center and health services, he said. “We need to be flexible and think creatively about old retail,” Powers said. Although vacancy rates are improving for retail and office space in Kitsap, the needle has moved only slightly. (Retail and office vacancy rates are combined as some office space is used as retail.) In February 2014, overall vacancies for retail and office stood at 15 percent, down from a peak of 17.7 percent in July 2010, according to figures compiled by Garet Gartin, Kitsap’s commercial leasing broker for Bradley Scott, Inc. Gartin said he is experiencing the most movement in leases for retail spaces of under 1,000 square feet by start-ups and small businesses, while the larger sites remain unfilled. Deciding what to do with large vacant spaces will help with leasing

smaller ones, he said. “If a small space is adjacent to a big empty store, it reduces interest. Property leasers are thinking ‘there is not traffic through here and my customers will have to look at an empty space.’ They have to draw a line about what will affect their customers,” Gartin said. Gartin, also a member of the Kitsap Commercial Investment Brokers group, believes that discussing ideas for what retail and big-box sites can become can help build momentum for future uses. “If an idea catches and sparks interest, people will talk about it outside of the (broker group),” he said. “In our industry, people are connected to people who make decisions. If it travels by word of mouth and catches a spark, then someone can jump on it and run with it.”

there aren’t very many places to move to either. One of the more visible vacancies, the former Heidi’s Sweet Shop at the corner of Pioneer Way and Harborview Drive, is about to be filled. Heritage Distilling Co. was expecting to receive a conditional use permit by early June. Justin Stiefel, owner with his wife, Jennifer, said he hoped to open at the end of July. “We knew we wanted to be downtown eventually,” he said, adding that the location is perfect because of its high visibility as well as the various activities downtown, including a very popular outdoor concert series in the summer. Heritage Distilling Co. opened its first location, by Inn at Gig Harbor, in the fall of 2012. The downtown distillery will be its second Gig Harbor location and its fourth altogether — a lease was recently signed in Eugene, Ore., and another distillery is opening in Roslyn, Wash., east of Snoqualmie Pass. Also expanding to a second location is

Bella Kitchen & Home, an upscale kitchen boutique headquartered in Uptown Gig Harbor. The 1,000-square-foot shop was expected to be open the last week of May. The building was previously occupied by the Harbor Peddler gift shop, which closed in February after 21 years. The two adjacent parcels, owned by the same family, are also up for development. Plans include the construction of two new buildings for Ship to Shore, currently located next door. In addition to having more space for its storefront and storage, Ship to Shore will have a large pond upfront where customers could try out kayaks. The project is in the permitting stage. John Moist, manager of Arabella’s Landing and the other adjacent Stearns family properties, said the hope was to start construction later this summer and complete it by next spring. Two other new businesses that opened downtown within the past year are Tickled Pink on Harborview Drive and Sea Hags at the north end of Harborview, in the Fin-

holm District. Tickled Pink, which sells fashion accessories and home décor, is in the former Animal Krackers space. Sea Hags, which opened at the end of last August, specializes in coastal décor with a focus on Fair Trade and made in USA. In February, the shop started sharing the space with Vicki’s Life and Vicki Jean Bags, whose owner, Vicki Dyer, makes leather bags and jewelry. Melissa Moller, Sea Hags owner, had a small retail set-up on a cruise ship in Alaska. But she lives in Gig Harbor, which made the business operation challenging. So she decided to open a shop closer to home. “One of the reasons I did it was because I wanted to see more retail add to the vibrancy of downtown,” she said. “There are a lot of professional businesses moving downtown and we’re trying to encourage more retail shops to fill in the vacancies. I think we need a good balance so we can attract more tourists to come here and spend time.”

Talk of trolley service in Gig Harbor had been going on for many years and the need for such a mode of transportation is critical in the summer months. When visiting boaters arrive in Gig Harbor, they have no way to get to stores to buy groceries, easily access both ends of the downtown waterfront district, or go to Uptown. This changed in the summer of 2013. With key help from former City Councilman Derek Young, the Gig Harbor Downtown Waterfront Alliance, Pierce Transit, Uptown and the Chamber of Commerce moved quickly

to initiate the Trolley Summer Demo Project within the downtown and Uptown districts of Gig Harbor. This demonstration project — consisting of two trolleys and two backup buses for high-volume days — ran during the summer of 2013 as a Pierce Transit limited duration demonstration project, supported by a local Community Investment Team (CIT). This collaborative financial arrangement included Pierce Transit, the Gig Harbor Downtown Waterfront Alliance, the City of Gig Harbor, Uptown and the Gig Harbor

Chamber of Commerce. The financial support from the CIT kept fares for riders to just 25 cents. Because of its success, the trolley will be returning to Gig Harbor for the 2014 summer season with service running from Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day. Another Excellence on Main Award for the Outstanding Promotional Event was presented for the 2013 Girls Night Out, hosted by the Gig Harbor Downtown Waterfront Alliance.


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Bosch said the age of the Bremerton hospital and a need to lower expenses are driving plans to consolidate in Silverdale. Despite multiple renovations, the Bremerton building is increasingly outdated, cramped and costly to maintain, Bosch said. The majority of rooms at Harrison house two beds, a largely obsolete design for new hospitals. Harrison officials say overhauling the building could cost $130 million. Harrison is also under pressure to cut costs. Affordable Care Act mandates demand greater efficiency from hospitals. Inpatient admissions have dropped 25 percent since 2009. Outpatient revenue exceeded inpatient revenue in March for the first time in the hospital’s history. Increased competition and cuts to Medicaid also dealt a blow to revenue. Harrison’s profit margins

are razor-thin. Operating two hospitals is inefficient, Bosch said. Emergency departments and many other services are duplicated on the Bremerton and Silverdale campuses. Combining services in Silverdale could save Harrison up to $15 million a year. “What we really came to realize was we needed one hospital and one campus,” Bosch said. Randall Moeller, president of The Doctors Clinic, said Harrison’s decision to combine hospitals appears to make the most sense for the hospital and community. “When you take a look at it from a medical standpoint and a financial standpoint, they really didn’t have a choice,” he said. The consolidation will come with a reduction in staff, though positions could also be gained as new facilities are built. Bosch said he believes that reduction can be met through at-

trition over the next several years, and layoffs would not be required. About 765 full-time and 511 part-time staff members work at the Bremerton hospital. Another 100 full-time and 245 part-time staffers work at the Silverdale campus. The Silverdale site offers a central location, easy access and room to grow, which is why it makes sense as a focal point for Harrison’s growing network of facilities, Bosch said. The 32-acre property at Myhre Road and Ridgetop Boulevard is already home to a 24-hour emergency department, a natal care unit and Harrison’s orthopedic hospital that opened last year, among other services. With about 240 beds and 400,000 square feet, the new hospital will be comparable in size to the Bremerton building, but more efficiently designed, Bosch said. A new medical office building and cancer center

are being considered and the campus will still have space for future expansion. The new hospital would join a growing health care cluster in Silverdale already anchored by Harrison, the Doctors Clinic and Group Health. Smaller practices abound off Ridgetop Boulevard, where a new medical office building will open soon. Commercial zoning and easy access from highways make the town an ideal place for health care services. “It’s becoming a medical mecca here in Silverdale,” said Bob Guardino, a commercial broker with Windermere Real Estate. The hospital opening could attract more providers to the area and more space will be converted to meet their needs, Guardino said. Physicians and specialists are desirable tenants for commercial landlords. “Any buildings they can convert are going medical,” he said.

The injection of hospital employees into Silverdale may have the biggest economic impact, said Ric Bearbower, an associate broker with Reid Real Estate. Those workers will shop at Silverdale businesses and many may buy houses, creating a positive ripple effect. “I don’t think there’s anyone in Central Kitsap who doesn’t see it as a great opportunity,” Bearbower said. With growth comes infrastructure challenges. Clogged intersections are already a problem in the Ridgetop area. The new hospital, which would handle up to 80,000 visits a year to its emergency department alone, could dramatically increase traffic. Harrison executives have already floated the idea of building a new exit off Highway 303 to serve the campus. The state Department of Transportation would take the lead on that proposal.

est unemployment rates in the state and an outmigration of its best and brightest young people who leave and never come back. I believe the salvation of Aberdeen will be the reinvention of its downtown into a more diverse urban space, led by the development of a transformational public space on the river near downtown. Public spaces can be the single most important influence on downtowns. Central Park in New York, Pike Street Market in Seattle, or Bellevue’s Downtown Park are examples of what public spaces can do to impact downtowns and make them more friendly.

Here are a few of my rules for downtowns: Widen sidewalks and narrow streets to add pedestrians and bikers; plan for fewer cars; provide affordable housing near public spaces; plant street trees; and hang lots of flowers. Color is critical to a vibrant downtown. Cities should encourage increased heights but demand quality landscaping, and should not allow commercial development into the adjoining neighborhoods. Downtowns must have a strict sign code, free-standing signs and billboards should be eliminated. Streets and sidewalks should be clean with great lighting, bench-

es for sitting, and, most importantly, people have to feel safe. Remember that successful downtowns are urban neighborhoods with parks, walking trails, activities for children and seniors alike. Downtowns are the soul of a community and can be exciting, wonderful places, for all to enjoy. Let’s meet for lunch downtown sometime soon. • Carey Bozeman is the

former mayor of Bremerton and Bellevue. He currently

operates a consulting firm called The Bozeman Group.

H A R R ISON | F ROM 4

Pressure to change

of our town will create a significant reduction in customers with the disposable income that help keep small independent businesses like ours growing,” Jara said. The departure won’t have a significant impact on the city’s tax base, said Cathy Johnson, city finance director. But she added that losing businesses that depend on Harrison would affect the city — and only time will tell how many that will be. Bremerton Mayor Patty Lent has vowed to find a new tenant for the hospital campus as well. But the city’s economic landscape, and indeed the fabric of the community, will change, said Mike Strube, director of the Bremerton Chamber of Commerce. “It’s not going to be an easy to pill to swallow, to see our hospital that’s been here for generations get up and leave,” he said. BOZEM A N | F ROM 3

economically sustained for the next 50 years and will meet the social and diverse needs of a younger, educated population. Today I am working as a consultant on a project to revitalize downtown Aberdeen, a once proud and economically successful city driven by the timber industry. At one time over 30 mills were located near downtown Aberdeen, providing high-paying jobs and creating a robust downtown economy. Today most of the mills have closed and the downtown has died a slow death, with one of the high-


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KITSAP GREAT GIVE | KOL MEDINA

Community’s giving will boost nonprofits and our economy On May 6, 2014, our community created the largest day of charity ever in its history – the Kitsap Great Give. On that day, over 2,000 people made donations to 200 local nonprofits totaling almost $540,000. When you include the money donated by sponsors of the Great Give, the total amount of money raised for nonprofits was nearly $650,000! We at Kitsap Community Foundation are grateful that the community allowed us to produce this amazing event. On a micro-economics level, the power of the Great Give is obvious: 200 of our local nonprofits will have more money to further their plethora of purposes – protecting our natural spaces; helping kids learn to read; helping the elderly live full lives; caring for kids and adults with mental and physical disabilities; providing college educations; enriching our communities with arts and culture; etc., etc. But when we step back and view the Great Give through the lens of macro-economics, we see its true power, in two ways. First, the Great Give directly adds to our county’s income statement. The $650,000 will, in the short-term, be spent by nonprofits in our community to purchase supplies, pay employees, buy gas for their ve-

hicles, invest in capital improvements, etc. Put differently, the Great Give will add $650,000 to the GDP, or I should say GCP (gross county product), of Kitsap County. Put more broadly, the Great Give is helping to improve our economy by supporting a vital sector of our county’s economy – the nonprofit sector. In 2012, the 250 or so public charities in Kitsap County (public charities are 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporations that are not private foundations) had total revenue of about $650 million and total assets of roughly $700 million. Because nonprofits generally spend all of their income each year, that means the nonprofit sector contributed something around $650 million to our GCP in 2012. That huge contribution to our GCP can be measured in another way – employment. While local figures don’t seem to exist, nationally the nonprofit sector employs about 10 percent of the workforce, making it the third-largest private workforce in the country (retail trade and manufacturing are first and second.) Presumably, those numbers hold true in our county as well, so it’s probable that nonprofits are the third-largest industry in our county (leaving aside government and military.)

In short, by providing an injection of funds into our local nonprofits, the Kitsap Great Give is supporting the overall economic prosperity of our community by directly and indirectly helping those nonprofits add to our GCP. The second macroeconomic benefit of the Great Give is more subtle, but probably more powerful. A nonprofit organization must, by law, have a religious, charitable, scientific or educational purpose. All of these purposes, and therefore all of the missions of the nonprofits in our community, have the goal of improving our community by improving (helping, educating, ministering to, inspiring) our citizens and the environs we live in. A healthy, educated, vibrant community and environment provides (a) good employees for all sectors of our economy and (b) a place where retirees want to live (and spend their money.) In other words, the nonprofit sector provides massive positive externalities that benefit our local economy immensely. By helping nonprofits provide these positive externalities, the Kitsap Great Give is providing much more than $650,000 of benefit to our community’s economy. The nonprofit and for-profit sectors of our community are symbiotic partners that make Kitsap a great place to live, work and play. So when the Kitsap Great Give happens again in 2015, please take part. It’s like a two-for-one deal: You can support local nonprofits and our community’s economy at the same time. • Kol Medina is executive director of the Kitsap Community Foundation.

Kitsap County awarded funding to reduce long-term unemployment Kitsap County, along with Clallam and Jefferson counties as partners in the Olympic Consortium, was awarded $193,000 to help return the long-term unemployed to work. Funding will be utilized to serve 80 long-term unemployed individuals with the goal of placing 64 of them into jobs. Overall, a total of $4 million was awarded to Washington state’s 12 workforce development councils from federal Dislocated Worker Rapid Response funds. The councils will deliver services to the long-term unemployed through WorkSource offices, partnering with local employment and training providers. “Workforce development programs successfully help businesses and job-seekers. We know that people who use WorkSource services have great results finding jobs. It’s a significant return on investment,” said Kitsap County Commissioner Charlotte Garrido, chair of the Olympic Consortium. Through extensive outreach in Kitsap, Clallam and Jefferson counties, the funds awarded will be utilized to conduct a more intensive version of the Job Hunter workshop series, intended to supply the unemployed with job search knowledge as quickly as possible. The goal is to help build momentum for the job-seeker to engage more readily with job club members and potential SEE LONG -TERM | 17


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Longtime owner selling Kingston grocery store By Tim Kelly Kitsap Peninsula Business Journal

Rick Bjarnson and Don Stolz are two guys who bagged groceries as teenagers and worked their way up to owning grocery stores. Bjarnson, however, is getting out of the business; the longtime owner of the Kingston IGA is selling his store to Don Stolz, who owns two Food Market stores on the Key Peninsula and another in Auburn. The Kingston store, which has been an IGA for about five years, has operated under various grocery brands LONG -TERM | F ROM 16

employers. On-the-job training and internships for those who need recent work experience or to brush up in employer-specific skills and procedures also will be provided. Other services will also be available to support job-seeking efforts. Locally, the problem of

since Bjarnson bought the business in 1979. “I think it was just after the earth started cooling, at least it seems like that long ago,” he quipped. Originally from Bellingham, where he worked for Albertsons for several years, Bjarnson was looking for an opportunity to run his own grocery store when he came to Kingston. “We thought we were going to buy into a little convenience store that at the time was owned by my father-in-law,” he recalled. But that didn’t quite fit the bill for what he had in mind.

“I wanted to have a grocery store big enough that you have to have a shopping cart,” the former box boy said. Bjarnson, 63, said he hadn’t planned to sell the store when he reached a certain age, and hadn’t even listed the business for sale, but a good opportunity presented itself at the right time. “Stolz was looking to expand, and he likes the idea of smaller towns where he can be involved in the community, and that was important to us,” he said. Stolz, who lives in Lakewood and bought the two

Key Peninsula stores about 12 years ago, said the Kingston store has a similar business profile. “I’m always looking for an opportunity that fits the size and style of operation I have, and we came across this one,” he said. Stolz will change the name of the business to Food Market at Kingston. He said he plans no change in the support Bjarnson’s store has provided for numerous community events over the years. “We are actively involved in local community things,” Stolz said. “We tend to operate kind of as a neighbor-

long-term unemployed workers is acute. Data from the state Employment Security Department shows that from July 2008 to March 2014, there were 4,786 workers who exhausted their unemployment insurance. Of this group, 65 percent are ages 45 and older and 87 percent have a high school diploma or higher.

Within the Olympic Consortium, 69 percent of unemployed workers are from Kitsap, 9 percent from Jefferson and 22 percent from Clallam. The top five industries in the area where long-term unemployed workers originate are construction, retail, heath care and social assistance, public administration and

manufacturing. For more information on unemployment program services offered at the WorkSource Center of Kitsap County, visit www.kitsapgov.com/hs/olympdev/jtworksource.htm, call 360337-4767 or e-mail jmckenna@esd.wa.gov. WorkSource is located at 1300 Sylvan Way in Bremerton.

hood store, and that’s how we intend to do it in Kingston.” Bjarnson has long been actively involved in civic affairs, and even though he’s looking forward to spending more time with his five grandchildren, he said his support for the community won’t end when the sale of his business closes later this month. “It becomes a way of life to be part of the community, and to do what you can,” he said. His last fundraiser at the Kingston IGA will be a barbecue June 21 to raise money for the town’s annual

Heronswood to hold Plant Sale & Garden Open days Heronswood Garden will hold two more Plant Sale & Garden Open events this season. They will be on July 12 and Sept. 6, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the botanical gardens, located at 7530 NE 288th St. in Kingston. The Heronswood events offer an opportunity for touring the garden at the height of its summer

Fourth of July celebration. Bjarnson is selling the grocery store and the attached Subway sandwich shop to Stolz Northwest Inc., but he will still own the rest of the shopping center property on State Route 104 in Kingston. He has several business tenants there, and said he plans to “work on rehabilitating the shopping center.” “Hopefully this economy will turn around and allow us to do something else in town,” he added. “We’ve got a couple other pieces of property we might be able to do something on someday.”

beauty. The events also bring together some of the top nurseries in the area selling their plant specialties to home gardeners. Admission is to the plant sale is free. A donation of $10 is suggested to tour the garden. Heronswood Garden members and Port Gamble S’Klallam tribal members do not have to provide a donation. For the latest on upcoming events, visit Heronswood.com.


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RETIREMENT PLANNING | JASON PARKER

Navigating through the fog It was a Saturday morning, and my 8-year-old son and I were headed out fishing. The sky was clear and the sun was shining when we left our home, but by the time we arrived at the boat launch the fog was pretty thick. I could see the sun trying to break through so I figured it would not be long before the fog had burned off. My plan was to get the boat in the water, stay close to shore and just fish right near the shoreline until visibility improved. As we started to drift into the Puget Sound, the fog started to get thicker and thicker until what had once been a very bright sun in the sky had completely disappeared. At first I thought, “Wow, this sure is beautiful.” We couldn’t

see land or other boats or anything. We could hear fog horns every couple of minutes and at one point a great big sea lion popped up about 20 feet from the boat. The water was completely calm; I was busy at work dropping our fishing gear into the water. After I had both of our fishing poles set up, I looked up and realized I was a little disoriented. Having lost sight of the sun and land, I wasn’t sure where we were. I stood up and looked at the compass. The compass said we were headed south. I had never really paid close attention to the compass before this moment, but south just didn’t seem right. So I pulled up the GPS, which is several years old, and it said we were headed in the opposite direction I thought we were headed. That didn’t seem right. It was then that I started to get a little worried. At first I thought, “Well I’ll

North Mason Chamber adds new staff member The North Mason Chamber of Commerce has hired Victoria McDonald as its new member services manager. In this new role, McDonald will manage the new member process and assist organizations in maximizing their chamber membership

just start motoring toward shore.” But as we began motoring, I realized the GPS indicated we were going the wrong direction. It was so strange how I was sure we were headed one direction but my instruments told me I was headed the wrong way. Then my imagination started to get the best of me. I started thinking, “What if my GPS goes out for some reason. Will I be able to find my way back to shore? What if this fog doesn’t burn off or worse yet, what if the fog keeps getting thicker?” Even though I had almost a full tank of gas, I started worrying about whether the gas had been sitting too long in the tank from the last time I filled up. Would the gasoline still be good? What if my motor dies out here? On and on my imagination went and starting creating all kinds of doubt and fear. Now of course I acted as

benefits, oversee social media communications and staff the Chamber’s Visitor and Information Center. McDonald most recently worked in advertising for the North Kitsap Herald weekly newspaper, and was a member of both the Poulsbo and Kingston chambers. She previously worked for the Port Angeles Regional Chamber of Commerce.

if nothing were wrong because I didn’t want my son to be concerned, but I said to myself I need to get back to shore. So I pulled up all our fishing gear, turned on the big motor and started following the GPS instructions to get us back to the boat launch. Really there was no reason to doubt the accuracy of my instruments, but I can tell you I was doubting them. It just didn’t feel like we were headed in the right direction. Steering by GPS is a unique challenge because it takes a little time for the GPS to refresh and let me know if we were indeed going the direction we needed to. After motoring for what seemed like eternity, but was likely only a few minutes, I saw a boat. The boat was white, and it just appeared out of nowhere. It was anchored down and not moving. Then all of a sudden I saw another boat. Again it just appeared. It is weird how the fog keeps obstacles hidden until you are right up on them. Finally we were about 15 feet from the boat launch

when it came into visibility. I pulled the boat out of the water and so ended our day on the water. As I thought back about this experience, I am reminded how fear can override our senses and make us begin to doubt all that we know is true. My instruments were accurate and following them turned out to be the best course of action, but I’m lucky I didn’t let my gut instinct direct me away from following the instruments. Having a retirement plan is a lot like having a GPS on your boat. You know which course of action you should take even when the fog rolls in and fear and uncertainty try to knock you off course. Sometimes you just have to put faith in the fact that you made good decisions when you created the plan and know that there are going to be times when every ounce of your being believes you may be going the wrong way, but that may be when it matters the most that you stick with your plan. Remember, having a good financial plan is not for

the good times. It’s easy to have a great plan when everything is going great. Everyone is a genius when the stock market is rising. Having a good financial plan is for the bad times. When disaster strikes, when your health begins to slip, when governments shut down, when stock markets crash and when fear rules the day. These are the times when we rely heavily on the preparations made in good times so one can weather the storm and find their way when perspective or visibility is lost. Having a good plan is like having a good GPS. The fog will roll in and create fear, doubt and uncertainty, but having the right equipment on board will guide you safely to your destination. • Jason Parker is president of Parker Financial LLC, a fee-based registered investment advisory firm working primarily in wealth management for retirees. His office is in Silverdale. Follow his blog at www.soundretirementplanning.com.


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Applications now available for Kitsap Bank’s Edg3 Fund competition for small businesses Kitsap Bank has announced that applications for the Edg3 Fund small business competition will be available June 2. This competition will award a $20,000 cash prize to a business that is having a positive impact on the community economically, socially, or environmentally. “We think there are a lot of innovative businesses with creative ideas in our local market that we don’t yet know,” said Tony George, president and chief operating officer. “With this competition, we hope to uncover some of these hidden gems, fund a creative, sustainable business idea, and help to take it to the next level.” The six-week application period begins runs through July 13. Visit www.kitsapbank.com/edg3-fund to download the ap-

plication and official rules. After the application period ends, semifinalists will be chosen, with public voting taking place through Kitsap Bank’s Facebook page. Finalists will be selected by public vote to present their pitches at a live event on Sept. 10 at the Kitsap Conference Center in Bremerton. An independent panel of judges will determine the winner. For-profit small businesses based in Western Washington that have a positive economic, social or environmental impact on the communities Kitsap Bank serves are encouraged to apply. The business operators need to have a commitment to their idea and concept, and make the case for how the prize money will give their business an edge.


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First planting a milestone in bamboo venture Bainbridge entrepreneurs plan to grow domestic supply in Alabama for future manufacturing By Tim Kelly Kitsap Peninsula Business Journal

A Bainbridge Island couple preparing for planting season doesn’t seem especially newsworthy, but Ann and David Knight aren’t your average gardeners putting in a backyard vegetable patch. What they are cultivating — far from Kitsap County in rural Alabama — is the beginning of what they envision as an entire new industry that will transform agriculture in that poverty-stricken region and create an eco-friendly manufacturing base for bamboo products. Since the Knights formed Fiber Resources three years ago, they’ve been working on securing an initial round of investment funding and getting the infrastructure in place for bamboo farming in the Black Belt region of Alabama, where conditions are well-suited for the plant. “We are planting 100 acres in the fall in west Alabama,” Ann Knight said recently. “That’s kind of our immediate work plan. We’re going to establish an in-field nursery; there will be 25 acres of timber (moso) bamboo and 25 acres of a biomass bamboo, for two different industries.” Bamboo, which is actually a grass, is a rapidly renewable resource that’s a sustainable alternative to wood, and different varieties of bamboo can be used in manufacturing a wide array of products — engineered building materials, textiles, bioplastics and charcoal, to name a few. One of the Knights’ partners in Fiber Resources is Marsha Folsom, a former first la-

PHOTO COURTESY RESOURCE FIBER

David Knight of Bainbridge Island, right, president/CEO of Resource Fiber, and Roger Lewis, owner of Lewis Bamboo in Oakman, Ala., stand by rows of bamboo plantlets of the Rubromarginata species that are waiting for planting in the fall. Lewis is an advisor to Resource Fiber and is under contract as the company’s nurseryman.

“It’s pretty exciting. It takes a long time to start a new industry, and we really are establishing a bamboo industry in the U.S. No one else is doing this.” Ann Knight, co-founder with her husband David of Fiber Resources LLC dy in Alabama who’s led economic development efforts in the state. They are working with Auburn University and four others in Alabama on long-term research and development projects related to bamboo propagation and best growing practices. The bamboo that Fiber Resources is planting for biomass will be harvestable in three

years, Knight said, and will be used to make biochar, an organic soil enhancement. The moso variety, perhaps the most recognizable type of bamboo in its tubular treelike form, grows to heights of 80 feet and takes longer to be ready for harvest. Moso is used in making building materials such as flooring, countertops and other surfaces.

Knight said Resource Fiber plans to build a small manufacturing facility next year on the 100-acre site where the first domestic bamboo crop will be growing. “We’ll be bringing in bamboo from China and Colombia in a form we can actually use to start manufacturing” some commercial products, she said. “That’s to drive revenue now, so we’re not waiting.” The company plans to expand its bamboo supply by working with local farmers who want to start growing the new crop. “We’ll be contracting with them to buy their harvested fiber,” Knight said. “Our end goal is creating a larger manufacturing facility, probably in 2024, for using moso bamboo.” That facility will use Fiber Resources’ patented manufacturing equipment, and some of the Alabama plant’s production will be for Teragren, the Bainbridge Island-based company the Knights founded in the 1990s. Teragren’s bamboo flooring and other products are available at retailers throughout North America, as well as online. Most of the world’s bamboo grows in China, and Teragren has a large manufacturing facility there. However, production costs have been increasing in China, and the Knights hope to eventually develop a domestic bamboo supply for all the raw materials needed for Fiber Resources to manufacture a wide range of commercial products. The Knights — who are still major shareholders in Teragren but are no longer involved in running the company — have been spending a lot of time away from home in Alabama, but getting their first crop planted will be a significant milestone for the ambitious venture. “It’s pretty exciting,” Ann Knight said. “It takes a long time to start a new industry, and we really are establishing a bamboo industry in the U.S.,” she added. “No one else is doing this.”

BUSINESS BRIEFS Watson sales VP featured at Kitsap Business Forum Steve Hayes, sales vice president of Watson furniture company in Poulsbo, will present “I Could Never be in Sales” at the next Kitsap Business Forum on June 10. According to Hayes, sales is a “dark art” that remains a misunderstood and underexamined function of business. Within this interactive discussion, Hayes will discuss the status of the sales function within business today, how selling has changed, what companies need to do to support it, and why business leaders all need to “speak Sales” to compete as organizations and as business people. The Kitsap Business Forum is sponsored by the Silverdale Chamber of Commerce, along with partners Dave Mitchell of PMR Consulting and John Powers of the Kitsap Economic Development Alliance. The forum will be held from 7:30-9 a.m.

at the Morgan Stanley office in Silverdale at 2011 Myhre Road, Suite 301. Anyone interested in attending should RSVP to 360-692-6800, or go online to register at KitsapBusinessForum.com.

Purchase of Myhre’s adds to investor’s Bay Street property The vacant Myhre’s building has been sold to Mansour Samadpour, the Seattle-area real estate investor who owns seven other properties in downtown Port Orchard. The sale was finalized May 21, said listing agent Bryan Petro of Windermere Real Estate. Samadpour’s company, Abadan Holdings LLC, paid $425,000 for the two-story building, which was gutted by fire in 2011. The Kitsap County Assessor values the partially restored building, still but a shell inside, at $341,370. Former owner Dick Rylander sold Myhre’s to a Pierce County couple in 2005

for $700,000. John Lora and Melinda Oliver vowed to renovate after the fire in 2011, but work stalled after a new roof was put on in 2012. Contractors who worked on the building are still waiting to get paid. Their legal case against the couple, who have each declared bankruptcy, is still pending. Rylander repossessed the building in January. Lora and Oliver owed him $804,380, including the unpaid portion of the mortgage, interest and penalties. Samadpour was unavailable for comment. No potential uses or tenants for the building have been disclosed.

Kitsap Bank recognized for corporate philanthropy Kitsap Bank was recently recognized by the Puget Sound Business Journal as a 2014 Corporate Philanthropist. This recognition, which is part of the Business Journal’s Corporate Citizenship Awards, hon-

ors businesses that “do well by doing good.” Since 2008, the Business Journal has been publishing the “Corporate Citizenship: Business of Giving” special report, which surveys area companies about their cash contributions to area nonprofits. This is the second year in a row that Kitsap Bank has received this designation. “Kitsap Bank is honored to be recognized for such a prestigious award,” said Steve Politakis, the bank’s CEO. “As the community bank, we believe it is our role to invest and help our local non-profits improve our communities and enhance our quality of life. We are proud to serve our local communities and it is truly a team effort.” Over the past five years, Kitsap Bank has contributed $1.25 million to nonprofit organizations in the communities they serve, and in 2014 will be donating over $300,000 to more than 100 nonprofit organizations. In addition, employees have volunteered countless hours in communities that Kitsap Bank serves.


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BUSINESS STRATEGY | DAN WEEDIN

• Do you make anything confusing to your clients and customers? How do you know? Do you provide them with easy access to you to ask questions and gain clarification? Do you ever ask them to evaluate your services and products? The reality is that customer service is as obvious as a ham sandwich (with or without the soup of the day). The problem is that technology, complacency, and plain laziness have too often become obstacles. When we are the customer, it’s discernible. When we are knee-deep into it, we disregard it like the waitress and the soup. Here is my simple 3-step program to assuring you avoid this trap. 1. Communicate as if it’s the most important thing you do, because it is. This means return calls and emails quickly. Create a standard for your company and yourself. Be accessible within the business day. Use technology to help your clients communicate with you on what they like and don’t like. Constantly search for better and more creative ways to communicate. 2. Surround yourself with a customer service team that is pleasant and positive. These people are the face of your business and are constantly being asked what your “soup of the day” is. While they might actually know, make

sure they are responding in a way that brings a good experience (see our hostess at Lola), rather than a negative one. While this seems like a given, you and I both know it’s easier said than done. That’s why these people are in so much demand. 3. Be the leader. There are too many times that owners and executives delegate away management and customer service and lose track of them. If you’re the boss, it’s your job as a leader to be vigilant on this issue; to train your people; to inspire and motivate them; to confront and deal with adversity; and to assure the positive experiences of your clients and customers. Bottom line — We can all work to improve our service and the value we provide. Keep it a high priority by always remembering to offer your clients that comfortable bar stool. That way, they will keep coming back for more soup!

$30,000 – and the Federal Reserve reports that student loan debt has nearly tripled over the last decade. That heavy debt weighs on students long after they leave colmaterials. lege. And there’s another difference. Pew Research reports that Typically, after the graduation households headed by a young ceremony euphoria wears off for (under 40) college-educated adult graduates of traditional collegwith no student debt accumulates and universities, students are ed seven times the net worth of faced with starting a new life households headed by a similarly situated perPew Research reports that son carrying studebt. And households headed by a young dent Pew found that student borrow(under 40) college-educated ers carried aladult with no student debt most twice as much other debt accumulated seven times (car loans, credit cards, mortgagthe net worth of households es) than non-borheaded by a similarly situated rowers. On the othperson carrying student debt. er hand, WGU Washington is affordable beaway from campus, finding a job cause tuition is charged at a flat and starting to repay their sturate of approximately $6,000 dent loans. per 12-month term for most proThe cost of a college education grams. Rather than paying per is staggering these days and 71 credit hour, students may compercent of grads are leaving colplete as many courses as they are lege with loans averaging almost able during a term without incur-

ring additional costs. Compounding the problem for the graduates of traditional brick and mortar campuses is that the job market remains tight. According to an Accenture survey, only 11 percent of this year’s graduates are leaving college with a job offer in hand. And almost half of graduates from 2012 and 2013 report they are underemployed and working in jobs that have nothing to do with their college degrees. Compare that with WGU graduates. In a 2011 Lighthouse Research survey of nearly 4,000 grads, 65 percent reported they got a raise, promotion or new job responsibilities as a result of their WGU degree and three out of four reported they were employed in their degree field. Does this mean that WGU will replace the traditional college campus? No, but it offers working students and those who dropped out of college another affordable option.

Do you know the soup of the day? Last month, I found myself sitting at an Applebee’s in Hurricane, West Virginia. I had made the trek with my family to this central West Virginia town to visit my 85-year old aunt. It was a 3½-hour trip from where our daughters live, but you never know how many more chances you get to visit aging relatives, so we took it. My cousin and his wife joined us and suggested we eat there. When we got around to ordering, my wife queried the waitress on something quite normal for a restaurant. The response was bizarre. Barb asked, “What’s your soup of the day?” The response (after about a 2-second pause) was, “I don’t know.” And that was it. No apology. No attempt to find out what the mystery soup was. Just a simple statement of ignorance that spoke volumes about her work ethic and her employer’s training system. Barb ordered the chicken. Earlier in the week, we had traveled to Cleveland to visit the

Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. For dinner, we chose a restaurant that came recommended by several friends from the area. The restaurant is called Lola (owned by celebrity chef Michael Symon) and is in a trendy area in downtown. When checking in, we were told it would be about 20 minutes, so we went into the bar area for a cocktail. There wasn’t enough seating for all of us, so Barb and I were going to stand and let the girls sit. Within about 45 seconds, the hostess showed up with a bar stool for Barb to use. It was a small and subtle gesture, yet one that carries long-term impact leading to loyalty and testimonials. While we may look at the first story with disbelief and amusement, we may need some level of introspection before we chortle too much. While the waitress at Applebee’s clearly missed the boat on customer service and creating a positive experience, how often do we in business do the same thing without even knowing it because it’s not as obvious? Allow me to offer some examples: • Do you promptly return email correspondence? My experience indicates we always do when the

COMMENTARY | DON BRUNELL

other person is a priority. How about when they aren’t, or when it’s uncomfortable or embarrassing? Does the onrushing flow of messages cascading into your inbox thankfully swallow up that email? • On the same note, how about those voicemails? What does the phrase, “I will call you back as soon as possible” really mean to you? I actually know business people that don’t use voicemail at all. What message is that sending customers? • Is the receptionist at your office or front desk friendly and inviting? Always? Or are you like a growing number of businesses that simply put a bell out on the front counter and ask you to ring it when you get there? What kind of environment are you welcoming your clientele into when they show up at your door? • Do you make callers to your business go through seven steps required by some horrid electronic answering system? Are they hammering away at numbers and “pound” signs trying in desperation to reach a live human being, only to be disconnected at the end?

WGU is unconventional success story Imagine 350 college grads walking across the stage to receive their degrees in a ceremony with no valedictorian and no student honors. That is exactly what the 2014 graduating class looked like when WGU Washington held its third graduation ceremony earlier this month. Sounds unconventional and non-traditional? It is, and intentionally so. WGU Washington has no campus and the students are not required to attend courses in person. They do their coursework online with their mentors while they stay at home with their families. Most work, but all do their studies at their own pace, not the university’s or the instructors’. The average bachelor’s degree takes 30 months. WGU stands for Western Governors University. Founded in 1997 by 19 governors, it came to

Washington in 2011 when thenSen. Jim Kastama (D-Puyallup) and Rep. Phyllis Gutierrez Kenney (D-Seattle) sponsored the legislation. The university serves working adults and the 950,000 state residents who have started — but not finished — their college degrees. The average age of the WGU Washington student is 36. Students come from urban, suburban and rural areas. WGU Washington uses competency-based instruction that measures learning rather than time in a classroom. In other words, you need to know the information thoroughly before you move to the next level. It is a pass-fail system with no letter grades. The important thing is the student masters his or her work, so potential employers know they can do the job. It doesn’t matter if you miss a class where important information was covered because WGU Washington is self-paced with mentors tracking progress and assisting students to master the

• Dan Weedin is a strategist, speaker, author and executive coach. He helps business leaders and executives to become stronger leaders, grow their businesses, and enrich their lives. He was inducted into the Million Dollar Consultant™ Hall of Fame in 2012. You can reach Dan at 360-697-1058; e-mail at dan@danweedin.com or visit his website at www.DanWeedin.com.

• Don C. Brunell is a business analyst, writer and columnist. He recently retired as president of the Association of Washington Business, and now lives in Vancouver. He can be contacted at theBrunells@msn.com.


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HUMAN RESOURCES | JULIE TAPPERO

Handling terminations without undue turmoil If you own your own business, manage a business or supervise people, chances are that at some time in your career you’ve had to terminate someone. An employee termination is usually performed with a lot of thought and preparation. When you fire someone, you generally do it with good cause. However, we’re all human, and ending someone’s job still feels really bad. How do we take care of ourselves in the process? Feeling like the executioner meting out the workplace death penalty can be one of the most depressing responsibilities management has. Having a few coping mechanisms at hand enables managers to themselves recover from the trauma of the situation. Only shoulder your burdens: The terminated employee leaves with many emotions and concerns to process, and tasks to handle. As a compassionate person, it’s easy for you to let your mind ponder how they’re feeling, how their family will react, and what their future will hold. The reality is, however, that from this point forward, those are their burdens, not yours. You, no doubt, have your own burdens to shoulder! You will have to figure out how their work will get done and how you’ll be replacing them, how to manage the impact

on your staff, and how to handle the many other issues that result from the termination. Keep your mind on your own troubles, as they will be placing a large demand upon your own emotions and energy. You performed a termination with dignity and compassion. Feeling heartache on behalf of the fired individual is only natural, but you nevertheless must resist the impulse to let your empathy pull you into a dark place — after all, it can’t help the person who’s been terminated, and it definitely isn’t helpful to you. Give yourself a break: Letting someone go is a weighty emotional experience, and may very well have taken a toll on you. Give yourself a break and take care of yourself. What helps you recover from stress? A hot bath and glass of wine? Extra playing time with the kids? A nice dinner with your spouse followed by a quiet walk? Going for a run with buddies? Whatever it is, make it a point to do something that brings your stress down and gives you some relaxation time. Tomorrow you may have some rebuilding to do, but for just this night, give yourself a break. Rely on a trusted ally: There are times that it is very lonely being in management, especially in a small business! You may find yourself deliberating a termination decision without having anyone else with whom you can discuss it. Do you question if the timing is right, the

Series of workshops at Office X-Pats will explore business leadership

Pats on Bainbridge Island. O’Brien has won regional leadership awards, including as a Cascadia Fellow for her lifetime contribution to green building, and she is the author of the popular “Northwest Green Home Primer.” The Office X-Pats series of one-hour workshops will be held on Tuesdays at noon during the month of June. Three subsequent sessions taught by Cyn- Cynthia Shick thia Shick, a professional development facilitator-trainer who will introduce an easy-to-grasp framework based on the research findings in the book “The

Leadership is about creating and responding to change, no matter the chair you’re leading from. Kathleen O’Brien, a leader in the field of sustainability who was instrumental in the development Kathleen of green building certifi- O’Brien cation and educational programs, will present the first session of a four-part series on leadership at Office X-

decision appropriate or warranted? You don’t want to second-guess yourself once the termination has been made. Seek the advice of a trusted colleague or peer with whom you can discuss the situation. Be sure that you protect your employee’s right to confidentiality while you acquire the advice you need to be assured your decision is right. Plan ahead and move forward: How your company responds to the termination event will be strongly influenced by the way you respond. You can reduce your own stress, as well as stress levels throughout the company, by being organized and planning ahead. Since you have the advantage of knowing that the termination is coming, create a plan for the days and weeks after. How will you announce the change? Who will handle the extra work? What is the process for replacing the employee? The quicker you move forward in a positive manner, the easier it will be for you to also move forward emotionally. Remember that it really is for the best: In the movie “Up in the Air,” George Clooney plays a professional ax-man who travels around the country firing people from their jobs. At one point, he confidently informs a freshly terminated worker that, “Anybody who ever built an empire, or changed the world, sat where you are now. And it’s because they sat there that they were able to do it.” Telling yourself that terminating an employee is for the best may sound like you’re trying to justify a difficult decision to make yourself feel better, but honestly, oftentimes it really is the best decision, not just for your business, but also for the employee you are letting go! Sometimes, someone isn’t in the right job for them, or the right company for them — or even in the right time of their life

to be doing a particular job. Here are some famous examples of people whose terminations ended up working out very positively for them: • A newspaper editor fired Walt Disney because “he lacked imagination and had no good ideas.” • Thomas Edison was fired because he wasn’t productive enough. • While in the military, Abraham Lincoln was busted down from a captain to a private. • Elvis Presley was fired by the manager of the Grand Ole Opry, who told him, “You ain’t goin’ nowhere, son. You ought to go back to drivin’ a truck.” • Steve Jobs was actually once fired from Apple. Here’s what he had to say about the experience: “I didn’t see it then, but it turned out that getting fired from Apple was the best thing that could have ever happened to me. The heaviness of being successful was replaced by the lightness of being a beginner again, less sure about everything. It freed me to enter into one of the most creative periods of my life. I’m pretty sure none of this would have happened if I hadn’t been fired from Apple. It was awful tasting medicine, but I guess the patient needed it.” As a good manager, trust that you’ve made a good, thoughtful decision that is best for your company. Then, trust that the terminated employee will follow the example of Steve Jobs, and turn their difficult circumstance into an opportunity to change their own future.

Work of Leaders.” The book is result of a six-year study of the most respected thinking and practice around leadership. This series is appropriate for entrepreneurs, business leaders and public sector teams. Register for all four sessions at: www. off icexpats.com /exploring-leadershipstyles/ OfficeXpats is a center for business connections and co-working, and offers room rentals for meetings and events. It is located in the Bainbridge Pavilion, 403 Madison Ave N., Suite 240. Call 206780-2177, or learn more at www.officexpats.com.

Sterling Property Group adds to real estate staff

• Julie Tappero is the president and owner of West Sound Workforce, a professional staffing and recruiting company based in Poulsbo and Gig Harbor. She can be reached at julie@westsoundworkforce.com.

Sterling Property Group in Silverdale has announced the addition of Jill Wallen to its real estate staff. Wallen, a longtime Kitsap County resident, began her real estate career Jill Wallen in 1994. Sterling Property Group’s principal office is at 9226 Bayshore Drive, Suite 140, in Silverdale. For information, call 360-692-2600 or check online at www.sterlinggroup360.com.


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BUSINESS BRIEFS was founded in Silicon Valley in 2009 and is now a global leader in the development, manufacturing and marketing of solar microinverters based on their own leadingedge technology. The APS solar solution combines highly efficient power inversion with a userfriendly monitoring interface to provide reliable, intelligent energy for residential and commercial applications. For information on APS solar microinverter projects, see www.apsamerica.com or email sales@apsamerica.com. For information on Sol-Up, see www.solup.com, email info@solup.com, or call 702-586-9800.

Music store’s community outreach efforts recognized in Music Inc magazine How does Ted Brown Music set itself apart? Giving back to the community. The 82-year-old Tacoma-based business, which has one of its five stores in Silverdale, is featured on the cover of this month’s issue of Music Inc., a nationally circulated magazine highlighting the successes of music retailers. With a motto like “your music is your passion,” the goals of Ted Brown Music go far beyond just selling musical instruments. The company’s nonprofit, Ted Brown Music (TBM) Outreach, works to bring music into the lives of young people. TBM Outreach has donated over 300 instruments to kids who otherwise wouldn’t be able to play in their school band. Through a number of summer music camps and other programs, TBM Outreach gives local kids the opportunity to make and enjoy music. “We think it’s very important to be involved and give back to the community in which we live,” says Ted Brown Music vice president Stephanie Brown Howe. Howe and president Whitney Brown Grisaffi are both featured on the cov-

Boxlight announces release of interactive flat panels Stephanie Brown Howe, left, and Whitney Brown Grisaffi of Ted Brown Music are pictured on the cover of Music Inc. magazine. er of the magazine, and an article focuses on other programs, events and strategies to get the community coming back to the store. Read the full Music Inc. article at: musicincmag.com /dig ital_editions / 2014/1405/38-39.html

Blue Frog Solar offers training webinars for installer certification

Poulsbo-based APS signs distribution deal in Nevada solar market

Blue Frog Solar in Poulsbo is introducing a new installer certification program, set up by APS, with a series of weekly training webinars. Beginning May 28, installers seeking APS certification can sign up for online sessions led by Dana Gosney, IT and Technology director for APS America, a Poulsbo-based supplier of microinverters for solar power installations. Three programs will be available in the training webinars. One covers installation of the made-In-Washington Blue Frog/ APS microinverters, while the others cover the APS Energy Communications Unit and APS Energy Monitoring and Analysis software. APS will soon be requiring that installers become certified through this training program before they can purchase APS equipment. Although an exact date has not been set, it is expected to be within the next couple of months. Each webinar will take approximately one hour. There is no limit to the number of participants in a session, but preregistration is required. Certified installers will receive a “road kit” of Blue Frog microinverters and connectors at a discounted rate for quick use in the field. Anyone interested in becoming a Blue Frog certified installer may register for the training webinars by contacting support@ bluefrogsolar.com.

Microinverters from Poulsbo-based APS America will be distributed by Las Vegas-based Sol-Up USA, under a first-time agreement between the two companies. The partnership establishes APS microinverter products in the Nevada market with one of the area’s top solar distributors and installers. “We’re very proud to be partnering with a company of Sol-Up’s stature,” said Paul Barlock, senior vice president of APS America. “Their performance in the Nevada market speaks to their expertise and customer service.” Sol-Up executives cited the leading-edge technology offered by APS microinverters in adding the APS line to their product portfolio. “APS is the only microinverter on the market for 300-watt panels with a 25-year warranty,” said Frank Rieger, CEO of SolUp USA. “Being twin inverters, APS microinverters are less costly because only one inverter is needed for every two panels. APS is the world’s leading brand for microinverters, and we’re very happy with the product.” Sol-Up has nearly 20 solar installations using APS microinverters already completed or in development. APS ranked No. 2 in global market share among top microinverter suppliers by shipments in 2013, according to GTM Research. APS America supplies and services APS products in North America. APS

BELFAIR — Boxlight has announced the release of their ProColor interactive flat panels. The line includes a 70” full HD and 84” UHD panel that lets users interact using their fingers and/or the included pens, with the ability to interact with up to four individual touch points. Both panels have an OPS slot for an optional Open Pluggable Specification PC, eliminating the need for an external computer. Boxlight offers two OPS PC options: Windows 8 (Full HD) and a 4k UHD OPS with Windows 8 specifically designed for the ProColor 840H. An optional pen tray can also attach below the front of the panel providing access to customizable quick key functions right on the display. “Technical directors in schools and in corporate alike depend on interactive technology for engagement and collaboration – the ProColor series is the natural next step for collaboration among groups in learning environments, and with the dependence on mobile devices and interactive surfaces, providing an interactive flat panel is a necessity,” says Jeremy Peterson, boxlight product manager. “Boxlight strives to innovate based on user feedback, and this is what that feedback has told us.” Boxlight (www.boxlight.com) has been developing and manufacturing award-winning projectors since its inception in 1985. Boxlight operations encompass sales in the United States and worldwide. Headquarters are located in Belfair, with offices in Mexico City, Taiwan and China. To find a dealer in your area, contact Boxlight at 360-464-2119 or sales@boxlight.com.

Olympic Printer Resources reduces disposal in landfills Olympic Printer Resources, Inc., a Kingston company that remanufactures printer cartridges, recently reported they prevented 56.8 tons of empty inkjet and toner cartridges from being disposed in landfills last year. The company collects empty cartridges from customers, military bases, hospitals and financial institutions around the Puget Sound region. In Olympic Printer Resources’ 2013 Washington State Recycling Survey reported to the state Depart-

ment of Ecology, 53 percent of the tonnage was actually reused in remanufacturing toner cartridges. Cartridge weight is primarily ABS plastic that is not biodegradable. “If you throw a toner cartridge in the dump and dig it up 10,000 years from now, the metal components will have corroded away but the plastic portions would still be intact,” notes Erik Petersen, vice president of operations for the company. “Our remanufacturing efforts recapture a large fraction of all the resources, the equivalent to three quarts of crude oil, used during the cartridge’s original production. Our quality remanufactured products are 100 percent guaranteed to meet the specifications of a newly manufactured cartridge, but at a much lower cost.” Company president Jeff Petersen stated, “Since 1993 we have been committed to supporting our local economy by providing quality products at reasonable prices. Olympic Printer Resources is a veteranowned small business that employs 10 people who are paid living wages and benefits who spend their paychecks in our area.” For information on purchasing remanufactured cartridges from Olympic Printer Resources, call 360-297-8384 or 800-6895488 or email sales@olyprinter.com. Information is also available on the company’s website at www.olyprinter.com.

Chantilly by the Bay is closing in downtown Poulsbo.

Family health concerns prompt closure of downtown Poulsbo store The owner of Chantilly by the Bay on Front Street in Poulsbo has decided to close her store due to the ailing health of family members who need her care. Gloria Taylor has operated her store for nearly a decade, offering unique gifts, home and garden décor, gallery art, and women’s fashions and jewelry. In a press release announcing the store’s closure, Taylor said she and her staff would like to thank all of their loyal customers. Taylor said she will hold a going-outof-business sale starting Friday, May 23, when everything in the store will be 50 percent off. Chantilly By The Bay is at 18925 Front Street. For more information, call 360-6974055.


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BUSINESS OPENINGS

Long-awaited Port Orchard marketplace opens its doors After two years of hype, hope and anticipation, the long-awaited Port Orchard Public Market is open for business in a stylishly transformed space that for several years had been one of Bay Street’s empty downtown buildings. After more than two years of planning, construction challenges and other delays, the marketplace that’s been the vision of local businessman Don Ryan held its official

PHOTO BY LARRY STEAGALL

Heather Cole puts out produce in her Bay Street Mercantile shop inside the new Port Orchard Public Market.

Couple starts water-testing laboratory in South Kitsap Scientists can be entreprenuers, too. James and Katie Schaefer decided that rather than working for a lab, they’d put their science degrees to work by starting their own small business as a water-testing laboratory. Centric Analytical Labs LLC is a stateaccredited drinking and environmental water laboratory the couple opened in November in Port Orchard. James Schaefer got a biology degree with a chemistry minor from Eastern Washington University in 2010. His wife, who’s from Port Orchard, graduated with an environmental science degree from the University of Washington in 2011. “James came up with the idea to start his own laboratory soon after he began working full time in one,” Katie said. The couple positioned their business —

grand opening May 24 , coinciding with the start of the Kitsap Harbor Festival. A couple vendor spaces were still under construction, so the market remains a work in progress, but visitors will find a seafood restaurant, an artisan chocolatier, a butcher, a lavender gift shop and a produce stand, with other spaces for rotating vendors. Eateries include a taqueria and The Central Dock, owned by Ryan and Kim Cherry, featuring pub fare, seafood specialties and Kitsap microbrews. The market, modeled after public markets in Seattle, is located in an 8,000-squarefoot building that was completely gutted and renovated. It has a distinctive clerestory, a new façade facing Bay Street and a wide roll-up door that opens to give the venue an open-air feel. Property owner Mansour Samadpour, through his Abadan Holdings LLC, invested nearly $750,000 to transform the dingy, decrepit, stale-smelling shell into an airy public space. Hurdles along the way included discovery of asbestos requiring removal and quirks of the building, built circa 1935, that required redesign of the front wall. Anchor tenants of the project (which had a soft opening in April) include Bay Street Meat Co., where co-owner Brian Brozovic of Port Orchard trims cuts of grass-fed beef and places them in an old-style glass display case. Brozovic has operated but not owned similar shops in Bellevue and Renton. He learned the meat trade in packing plants, later gravitating to locally sourced meats free of hormones, steroids and antibiotics. Brozovic believes Port Orchard is ready for an upscale butcher, and he plans to soon add cheese, milk and eggs. David and Sue Baker sell lavender products — massage oil, natural insect repellent, aromatherapy wraps, candles and which they started with their parents as partners — to fill a niche as the only stateaccredited water testing laboratory in South Kitsap. They invested in cutting-edge techJames Schaefer nology for their lab so they could provide high levels of precision in their testing and quick turnarounds for clients. Centric tests drinking water for utility districts, well drillers and homeowners. The lab also checks samples from streams and lakes to help agencies determine the environmental health of water bodies. Manchester Water District, West Sound Utility District and Northwest Water Systems were among its early customers.

PHOTOS BY LARRY STEAGALL/KITSAP SUN

Above: The view out the main Bay Street entrance at the Port Orchard Public Market. Below: Brian Brozovic puts meat in the display case at Bay Street Meat Co.

more — made by Sue from plants Dave grows on their quarter-acre in Manchester. The public market model is working well

for the Bakers, who formerly sold their wares at regional markets and fairs. SEE MARKET | 31

Sweet spot: Cake specialist opening shop in Kingston Methia Gordon, who started baking with her mom at age 6, runs Sweet Life Cakery out of a commercial kitchen she built at home. Now Gordon is preparing to move beyond creating custom-order wedding cakes and other specialties in her home-based business and open a retail shop. She plans to have Sweet Life Cakery at Cleo’s Landing open by July 4 in MEEGAN M. REID | KITSAP SUN a downtown cottage two blocks north of Methia Gordon pours batter into a cupcake tin the ferry terminal. The familiar green at her Kingston bakery studio. cottage recently was vacated by the Kingston Chamber of Commerce. on Hostess Ding Dongs. The new location will be a showroom for Gordon honed her skills at the Culinary Gordon’s elegant wedding cakes, as well Institute of America in Napa Valley and as a place to sip a cup of tea or coffee and various food-related businesses in Califorenjoy a slice of cake. Gordon also will sell nia and Kitsap before opening her cakery whole cakes, cupcakes, fruit pies and her in a baking studio and commercial kitchen signature “Sweet Blisses,” her upscale take she built adjacent to her house.


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BUSINESS OPENINGS New version of Café Trios back on Winslow’s east end The couple who have reopened Café Trios on Bainbridge Island are “boat people turned restaurateurs.” “I’m a boat captain,” Angela Veeder adds, “and my boyfriend’s also been in maritime … he’s worked on oil rigs.” She and Michael Doctor met when they were both working on excursion boats in Alaska, taking tourists out for whale watching and other adventures. Now they’ve dropped anchor for a new adventure in the restaurant business. Veeder, who’s from Seattle, said her father bought the building in the Harbor Square area on Winslow Way East in 2009, after the original Café Trios became a casualty of the recession. “The building was a family investment,” she said, “but my father’s been too busy with other business ventures to deal with it.” So in February of this year, she and Doctor began working on the space to create their new version of Café Trios. “We had the floors redone, and I painted the entire place myself,” Veeder said. Their opening day was Cinco de Mayo, though Veeder said they’re still putting the finishing touches on the café. The Trios menu includes paninis, salads, numerous vegetarian choices including lasagna, and small-plate combos. House specialties include lemon slaw and a charcuterie board, an appetizer assortment with two kinds of salami, prosciutto, cheddar, Dijon mustard, cornichon pickles, fig jam

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New owners have brought back Café Trios on Bainbridge Island. and rustic bread. “Most of our food we make from scratch, using as much organic ingredients as we can,” Veeder said. The café serves locally roasted Grounds for Change coffee, mostly Washington wines, and beer from area craft breweries. Though the café proprietors have no previous experience, their friends in the restaurant business have been a resource for menu planning and other aspects of their new venture. “We just have great sources and friends who have been in the industry for years, and some good family recipes,” Veeder said. “We didn’t use any consultation companies or

anything like that, like some start-ups do.” Café Trios has inside seating inside for about 50 patrons, plus a patio. It’s open daily until 7 p.m. (5 p.m. on Sundays), but the hours will flexible as they get the place off the ground, Veeder said. The owners hope tourists and locals who are more familiar with the main downtown stretch of Winslow Way west of the ferry terminal will venture up to their new place, which is a couple blocks east of the Bainbridge Island Museum of Art at the corner of Winslow and State Route 305. “We’re hoping we’ll start drawing some people down to the east end on Winslow,” Veeder said.

“Just in the last few weeks, I’ve done better here than if I’d done all four of my farmers markets,” Dave said. Owners of A&K Shellfish, a small family-owned operation in Tahuya, also expect synergy at the market to work in their favor as they launch Northwest Seafood and Wine. “Being part of a market with other vendors was very appealing,” co-owner Annie Fitzgerald said. “Even though we’re not familiar with Port Orchard, we can see the potential in downtown.” The market is run by vendors through the Port Orchard Public Market Council. “It couldn’t have been done by just me. It was done by a multitude of different people,” Ryan said. Ryan’s research of other year-round markets suggests that it could take two or three years for Port Orchard’s market to evolve into a regional destination. But that’s the plan. “We still have a lot of work to do building the clientele,” Ryan said. “This market is designed to bring in tourists, tax dollars to our government, locally sourced products to our community and an environment that brings people back to our downtown. “To me, this whole project has been about bringing people together for the good of our community.” • Information from the Kitsap Sun is included in this article.

Salon wants customers to reach Hairvana Theresa Collier recently opened Plum, an Asianinspired store offering home décor and art, on Bainbridge Island in an upstairs spot in the courtyard at 124 Winslow Way East. MEEGAN M. REID/ KITSAP SUN

Home décor store with Asian theme opens on Bainbridge A new Asian-inspired, Northwest-style home and garden store has opened on Bainbridge Island. Plum is located at 124 Winslow Way E, up the stairs in the courtyard alley. The store opened May 8, date of Bainbridge Island Downtown Association’s Girls Night Out event. Plum features Asian ceramics, tea, home décor and accessories, along with local pho-

tography, sumi paintings and jewelry from regional artists. Owner Theresa Collier has over 30 years in retail buying. Most recently, she created a gift store at the Bloedel Reserve Gate House. Her store hosted a grand opening celebration on May 17. Plum’s hours are 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. More information: call 206-701-3654, email plumbainbridge@gmail.com or check online at www.plumbainbridge.com.

Her clever uncle unwittingly came up with the name for Nichole Pearson’s new salon in Port Orchard. “Since it is going to be a onestop salon where you can get your nails and your hair done, and get a massage,” Pearson said, “my uncle asked one day, ‘How’s your hairvana coming along?’ And we thought, that’s perfect.” Hairvana Salon & Spa opened recently at 1140 Bethel Ave. in the small retail center called Village Square that’s owned by Debbie Macomber. Hairvana is in the Victorian-style building where the renowned romance novelist’s A Good Yarn Shop is located. Pearson, a 1997 graduate of South Kitsap High School, launched the business in her hometown with her father, Rob Pearson, a local architect and contractor who had a helpful connection. “I had gotten into hairstyling, and my dad has been working with Debbie Macomber for awhile now,” said Pearson. “And it was just kind of like the light bulb went off, and we thought this would be the perfect space to start our own hair salon and spa.” Hairvana has been open since March but

Nichole Pearson recently opened Hairvana Salon & Spa on Bethel Avenue in Port Orchard. SUBMITTED PHOTO

held its grand opening May 31. Pearson, who previously worked as a stylist at Tease Salon in Bremerton’s Manette area, has two other hairstylists at Hairvana and this summer plans to add a nail technician, an esthetician to provide skin care and facials, and a massage therapist. The salon is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. For appointments, call 360-602-0464.


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Tech review: Surface Pro 3 works as laptop, has trade-offs By Anick Jesdanun The Associated Press

NEW YORK — To appreciate Microsoft’s latest tablet computer, you need to accept the notion that one device can do it all. The Surface Pro 3 works as a tablet when you want to watch video or read ebooks. It works as a laptop when you need to get serious work done. The Surface delivers on both, though it falls short of meeting Microsoft’s claim to do so without compromising on either. The Pro 3 runs a full version of Microsoft’s Windows 8 system, the same as you get on a traditional desktop or laptop computer. That means that, unlike other tablets, it can run just about any program designed for Windows: Microsoft Office, Photoshop and more. The Surface has a touch screen like other tablets, but it also has an optional cover that opens to reveal a physical keyboard and touchpad. It has a USB

port and one for external displays, both of which are rare on tablets.

The mid-range configuration comes out June 20, with the rest coming out later

duce glare from overhead lights. Of course, the MacBook

The Surface has a touch screen like other tablets, but it also has an optional cover that opens to reveal a physical keyboard and touchpad. It has a USB port and one for external displays, both of which are rare on tablets. It also matches laptops in price. Although the new Surface starts at $799, the keyboard cover is $130 extra. As a laptop replacement, you’ll want a faster processor and more memory. Configurations run up to $1,949, or $2,079 with the keyboard. A comparable MacBook Air laptop costs $1,749 — though buying a separate tablet will run you a few hundred dollars more.

this summer. I’ve had about a day with the Surface since the announcement. I wrote this story with my feet on my desk and the Surface on my lap. The previous model had a kickstand that rests in two positions — one for the desk and one for the lap. The new one gives you a range of angles, akin to adjusting a laptop screen on its hinge to any position. I was able to adjust the angle to re-

also does all that, while allowing me to hold it in one hand. When I try to do that with the Surface, the keyboard or screen moves back and forth like a swing. Then again, the MacBook isn’t convenient to open on a crowded subway or bus, and it isn’t comfortable for watching video in bed. The Surface, without the keyboard, is ideal for those situations. Apple’s iPad is good for

that, too, and it has a greater range of tablet-specific apps unavailable for Windows or even Android. The Surface and other Windows tablets have the benefit of being able to run multiple apps side by side, something I long for in the iPad when I want to check e-mail or Facebook while watching video. The Surface also has a bigger screen, at 12 inches diagonally, compared with the

iPad’s 9.7 inches. The Surface comes with a stylus that feels like a real pen. Clicking on it takes you to Microsoft’s OneNote app, where you can start handwriting or doodling, just as you would on a pad of legal paper. The screen is sensitive enough to tell whether you’re pressing lightly or hard, and what appears adjusts accordingly, SEE REVIEW | 33


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CAR REVIEW | 2014 FORD FIESTA

Hatchback, sedan sport new looks By Lary Coppola For the KPBJ

The world’s best-selling subcompact — the Ford Fiesta — has a new look, two frugal new powerplants, new interior, and upgraded in-car technology for 2014. Available in both sedan and hatchback versions, we had the opportunity to drive the 5-door hatchback Titanium and ST versions within two weeks of each other — the Titanium during a weeklong visit in South Florida, and the ST back in the Pacific Northwest. Main competitors for the hatchback include the Honda Fit, Hyundai Accent and Nissan Versa, while the sedan primarily stares down the Chevy Sonic. One cool new feature is the MyKey technology, which allows owners — or parents — to set maximum limits on vehicle speed and stereo volume, and prevents deactivation of safety systems. Model Lineup: There three basic model choices for the sedan and hatchback — the base Fiesta S, Fiesta SE, and top-ofthe-line Fiesta Titanium. The Fiesta ST is available in hatchback only and powered by a high-output, direct-injected version of the 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine that delivers 197 horses and 202 lb.-ft. of torque. A 6-speed manual is the only transmission choice. Standard safety equipment on all models includes seven airbags, including dualstage frontal, front seat side-impact, side curtain and driver knee; a post-crash alert system; antilock brakes and electronic stability control. Walkaround: While the updated styling helps to make the 2014 Fiesta 5 percent more aerodynamic than previously — and boosts fuel economy — the most noticeable change is the faux Aston Martinstyle grille that bears a strong resemblance to Ford’s Fusion sedan. The upper and lower grilles have switched proportions, with the long, lower grille smoothly flowing into R EV IEW | F ROM 32

just like real paper. One potential annoyance: The pen doesn’t have a rechargeable battery. You need a AAAA battery (the first time I’ve heard of that size) plus two wristwatch-type coin-cell batteries. And you need a small screwdriver, not included, to replace the batteries. The new Surface departs from most other tablets, including previous Surface models, in adopting a screen ratio of 3:2. Most tablets use 16:9 for widescreen television. The iPad uses 4:3, which is common for older TV shows and standard digital photographs. That means you’ll get wasted space whether you watch 16:9 or 4:3 video. It tends to be one or the other on other tablets, though the amount of wasted space is larger when you do have it. Microsoft says the 3:2 ratio is the “sweet spot” that covers both types of

reshaped foglamp housings. The Fiesta ST replaces the grille insert with black mesh. The headlamps are also new, but keep the upswept look of the 2013 model. Deep hood lines give the Fiesta a more athletic look, while lines on either side of the large upper grille flow into wide, flared front fender arches. In the rear, the sedan has sleeker, reshaped tail lamps and a more contoured deck lid, but retains its somewhat boxy shape. The 2014 Fiesta rides on the same platform as the 2013, with the wheelbase unchanged, but overall it’s a half-inch shorter. Interior: The redesigned cabin features upgraded materials with a lot less hard plastic. The Titanium’s heated leather front seats are comfortable, with plenty of side bolstering to keep occupants well-positioned. Our test ST had the cloth Rocarro sport seats, which because of their high sides, make getting in and out somewhat difficult, but are comfortable once you’re seated. The 39.1 inches of front headroom will accommodate a 6-footer. Front legroom measures about an inch more than both the Honda Fit and Nissan Versa Note. Both our test vehicles featured the MyFordTouch system, with the voice-activated Sync interface, which allows users to control the audio system, pair a phone via Bluetooth, access certain Ford-approved apps and get voice-prompted, turn-by-turn directions. The display screen sits deep into the instrument panel, shielding it from glare, making it easily readable in bright sunlight. The small storage area in the center console is relatively narrow, but deep. Both our test vehicles’ center consoles had two fullsize cup holders, and the storage pocket in the front door is large enough for a coffee mug or larger water bottle. Rear headroom is nearly an inch less than the Nissan and nearly two inches less content. It’s also good for photos from singlelens reflex, or SLR, cameras. A bigger consideration than the screen ratio is whether you need a single device that does all things. There are plenty of professions that don’t involve sitting at desks all day: health care, retail and teaching, to name a few. A hybrid might make sense in those cases. But I’m not one of those people. When I’m reading e-books on a train or a bus, I prefer a smaller tablet or dedicated ereader. When I’m editing photos or writing, I prefer a laptop with a larger screen. When I’m watching video, I prefer a streaming device attached to a big-screen TV. The Surface is good for those who want just one device, but there are trade-offs, notwithstanding Microsoft’s insistence otherwise. • Anick Jesdanun is AP’s technology writer.

The redesigned 2014 Ford Fiesta than that of the Honda, while rear legroom is significantly less than both. When it comes to cargo space, the Fiesta sedan’s 12.8 cubic feet is on par with the rest of the class. The hatchback, however, isn’t. With all the seats folded down, the maximum is 26 cubic feet — compared to the Nissan’s 38.3 and Honda’s cavernous 57.3. Under The Hood: The 2014 Fiesta comes standard with a 1.6-liter, 120-horse, four-cylinder engine that delivers 112 pound-feet of torque. It’s married to a 5-speed manual or 6-speed automatic. Optional on most models is a 6-speed dualclutch transmission Ford calls the PowerShift automatic. Our Titanium model was equipped with that. Meanwhile, our high-performance Fiesta ST featured the high-output, direct-injected version of the 197-horse, 1.6-liter, fourbanger EcoBoost powerplant, good for 202 pound-feet of torque. Fuel economy for the Titanium is 29/city, 39/highway for a combined 32, while the ST is 26/city, 35/highway for a combined 29. Behind The Wheel: We found the 120-horse 1.6-liter engine perfectly adequate for tooling around town. It held its

own on Florida’s I-95 — where the speed limit is merely a suggestion — once it got up to speed. The sportier 197-horse ST held its own everywhere – from hills to freeways — with a lot more zip. Steering was fairly precise on the Titanium, but seemingly sharper on the ST. Handling is easily controlled, with slight body roll through tight corners. Braking is strong and confident. Whines: Microsoft has seemingly worked many of the bugs out of the SYNC system, so it functions most of the time — but not always. Too bad, because it’s the most intuitive, user-friendly of any automotive interface, but reliability has been an ongoing problem. There was moderate road noise at average to higher speeds. The internal cooling fan seems to run continuously. Bottom Line: The Fiesta remains a great choice in terms of bold looks, value and driving dynamics. Even with two different drivetrains, we still found the Fiesta to be equally adept running errands around town as it was on the freeway, but falls shy when it comes to rear passenger and cargo space.

Cannabis app Leafly picked as App of the Year by GeekWire

ries and doctor locations around the world. Leafly’s iOS and Android app have over 1.4 million downloads, and Leafly maintains a five-star rating on the App Store. Together, Leafly’s website and app receive more than 3 million visits every month. Leafly’s app won in a public vote, beating a field including Parallels Access, a remote desktop app for iPad, Microsoft’s Office for iPad app, and Lively, a popular app for concertgoers. GeekWire has praised Leafly’s functionality and its clean, professional appearance. With the Leafly app, users can search for cannabis strains by multiple attributes, effects, and medical uses simultaneously, view strain flavor profiles, and more. Leafly can be accessed online at Leafly. com. The Leafly mobile app is available for free download through Apple’s App Store and Google Play. To learn more, visit www. leafly.com.

PRNewswire

SEATTLE — Leafly, a mobile information resource for cannabis consumers, was named GeekWire.com’s App of the Year at their annual awards ceremony May 8 in Seattle. The GeekWire Awards celebrate the top startups, entrepreneurs and tech innovations from the Pacific Northwest. Described as “the Yelp of cannabis,” the Leafly app helps responsible cannabis consumers review and stay informed about cannabis strains and products and the best places to acquire them. Leafly also connects cannabis patients with doctors who can help them through the medical authorization process. Leafly includes more than 100,000 usergenerated reviews of more than 800 cannabis strains and thousands of dispensa-


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CAR REVIEW | 2014 NISSAN PATHFINDER

State-of-the-art crossover SUV By Lary Coppola For the KPBJ

The term “crossover SUV” has become standard nomenclature throughout the automotive industry, without a clear definition of what, exactly, makes up such a vehicle. The line between crossovers and “real” SUVs has become so blurred it’s hard for the average consumer to know which is which. The only certainty is that crossovers have become a blend of minivans, family sedans and traditional sport utility vehicles (SUV). Truck-based, body-onframe vehicles like Nissan’s own XTerra have always defined “real” SUVs. However, by that definition, is the unibody Jeep Grand Cherokee, which arguably offers as much off-road capability, a crossover or a “real” SUV? Most would agree it’s “real.” The 2014 Nissan Pathfinder, which is available in both frontwheel and all-wheel drive (AWD) unibody configurations, defines the current crossover state-of-the art. It’s loaded with creature comforts and features never before found in the rugged, body-on-frame Pathfinder of days past. Walkaround: I have to admit, when I saw the first media photos of the designed Pathfinder, I was less than impressed. However, photography doesn’t quite do the Pathfinder justice. For starters, it doesn’t have the same boxy styling, or truck grille, that linked the previous Pathfinder to the Frontier and Titan pickups as well as the larger Armada SUV. Like most newer, car-based crossovers, the styling is softer and more rounded, with a strong character line running the length of the body, flowing from the headlights down the hood, underneath the beltline and into the LED tail lights. The front fascia stylizes the previous truck look so expect to see the Frontier and Titan sport similar changes in the future. The 2014 Pathfinder rides on the same platform as the Infiniti QX60, and is

The 2014 Nissan Pathfinder slightly larger in all dimensions than the previous version. Its 114.2-inch wheelbase is two inches longer than before, with the body itself almost five total inches longer, and 4.4 inches wider. The height is a full three inches lower, two of which were gained by reducing ground clearance to 6.5 inches for better ingress and egress. The new Pathfinder has also shed as much as 500 pounds from the vehicle’s overall mass. Interior: Nissan didn’t skimp on interior size or amenities to achieve that weight reduction, delivering a three-row cabin that’s comfortable, spacious, airy and well-appointed. It successfully makes the transition from traditional SUV to more refined crossover. The seats are comfortable, with wide bolsters and a well-cushioned bottom, and leather standard with the SL and Platinum trims. The old dashboard’s sharp edges are history, with soft-touch materials on nearly every surface.

Thoughtful touches like padded leather on the doors make this Pathfinder seem more like a refined luxury sedan than a rugged offroader. The family-friendly second row allows you to slide the outboard passenger seat forward without needing to remove a child seat. It also offers enough leg and headroom for most adults, along with conveniences like cupholders in the door armrests and the ability to slide and recline. All seats behind the first row fold flat, revealing 79.8 cubic feet of cargo space. There’s 16 cubic feet with all seats in position, compared with 79.2 and 16.5 cubic feet in the previous Pathfinder. In terms of technology, the 2014 Pathfinder abounds in it, starting with Nissan’s Around View Monitor technology, which was perfected by Nissan’s luxury brand, Infiniti. It displays views of every angle on all sides of the vehicle — excellent when parking or maneuvering in tight spaces. Other amenities include

a full navigation/infotainment system, kickass Bose premium audio (available on SL and Platinum trims only), a tri-zone DVD entertainment system, along with a host of alphanumeric safety systems and Nissan’s new Easy-Fill tire inflation system that honks the horn when tires are inflated to their optimum specification. Under The Hood: Nissan’s 3.5-liter VQ35DE workhorse V6 — arguably the best powerplant since the small-block Chevy — is the only engine available. It delivers 260 horses at 6,400 rpm and 240 pound-feet of torque at 4,400 rpm. The old Pathfinder’s conventional, five-speed automatic has been replaced with Nissan’s revamped and much-improved Xtronic Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT). The new CVT is actually a surprisingly good match for the engine — and much better than the previous version. Nissan used the same basic formula that improved fuel economy on the 2013 Altima sedan, with the CVT shouldering

much of the burden. The V6 has been pretty much left alone, while the transmission’s 40 percent reduction in internal friction and use of a drive chain specifically designed for the Pathfinder, improves overall performance. Nissan’s All-Mode 4x4-i system allows drivers to switch between frontand all-wheel drive on the fly, as well as featuring a fully automatic mode, and is available on all models. Fuel economy for the front-wheel-drive version is 26 mpg/highway and 20/ city. AWD numbers are 25 and 19. Despite criticism over using a CVT on an SUV, there’s much to say for a tranny only revving the engine to 1,800 rpm while driving 70 miles per hour. Behind The Wheel: We’ve test-driven the 2014 Pathfinder both in frontand all-wheel-drive versions a couple of different times now on all kinds of roads. Both deliver a solid, smooth, comfortable and stable ride, that’s relatively quiet. And even with the CVT, it didn’t disappoint on some of the more engaging terrain, although in all

fairness, while as adequate as any crossover, it’s not the go-anywhere off-road enthusiast’s machine the previous version was. But it isn’t meant to be, either. The car-based platform leaves that traditional truck feeling and ride behind, instead delivering a refined, dialed-in driving experience. The steering is a bit light for my personal taste, but brakes, acceleration and handling are all good, and the Pathfinder just feels more nimble than its competitors. Whines: Visibility is good, although the wide Apillars make vision around some corners slightly problematic. However, some competitors have larger blind spots. Bottom Line: Regardless of how you define a crossover SUV, the 2014 Nissan Pathfinder is a winner in the three-row, family-friendly segment. It offers a well-appointed cabin, lots of functionality and decent driving dynamics packaged in a sleek new wrapper. We don’t see how this new Pathfinder could be anything less than successful.


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PEOPLE IN BUSINESS Poulsbo-based APS adds technical support engineer

First Federal hires manager for new branch in Silverdale

Solar component manufacturer APS America has hired Andy Weber as technical support engineer. Weber has extensive experience as a solar installer in Colorado, and also has worked as a financial analyst in the solar industry. He holds a master’s degree in interdisciplinary studies. Weber said he was drawn by the advanced solar technology now offered by APS, including the flagship YC500 microinverter and the YC1000, the first 3-phase, 4-panel microinverter for commercial applications, due later in 2014. Andy Weber “APS products are distinguishing themselves in the market and in the field, where it really counts,” he said. “It’s an exciting time to be joining the company and supporting these products.” APS ranked No. 2 in global market share among top microinverter suppliers by shipments in 2013, according to GTM Research. For information on APS solar microinverter projects, see www.apsamerica.com or email sales@apsamerica.com.

First Federal has announced that KristiAnn Stecker of Poulsbo has been hired as the branch manager for the new Silverdale branch, scheduled to open this summer at 3035 Bucklin Hill Road. Stecker has over 17 years of experience in the banking industry, including working in mortgage lending, investment banking, business banking and most recently in retail banking management. She is currently pursuing a master’s degree in business management through Western Governors University. “First Federal is pleased to have KristiAnn leading our Silverdale branch KristiAnn team with her diverse understanding of banking, customer service and Stecker management skills,” said Dawnya Textor, vice president/director of retail banking. First Federal is a Washington-chartered mutual savings bank with nine branches in the North Olympic Peninsula region.

Pope Resources CEO leaving for new position

Kitsap Bank promotes staffer in commercial loan department

PRNewswire POULSBO — Pope Resources has announced that company president and CEO David L. Nunes is resigning, effective the end of May. Nunes is leaving to join Rayonier Inc., an international forest products company. Thomas M. Ringo, currently chief financial officer at Pope Resources, has been designated as interim CEO. “We are tremendously appreciative of the job Dave has done in his 12 years as CEO of the partnership,” said Pope board of directors member Douglas Norberg. “We wish him the best as he embarks on his new responsibilities at Rayonier. Dave has positioned us well to continue growing, and we have already begun a search for the right person to replace him.” Pope Resources (www.poperesources.com), a publicly traded limited partnership and its subsidiaries Olympic Resource Management and Olympic Property Group, own or manage 204,000 acres of timberland and development property in Washington, Oregon, and California. Pope’s holdings include the town of Port Gamble and thousands of acres of timberland in North Kitsap County.

Kitsap Bank has promoted Jena Chance to senior loan assistant with the Bremerton commercial loan team. She has been with the bank for over 12 years in various roles in the SBA department, the loan center, and commercial lending. Chance recently completed a two-year program to obtain an ABA Banking and Finance Diploma, increasing her overall knowledge of banking and commercial lending. “Jena has been an important part of her team supporting the individual officers in spreading financial statements and tax returns, completing loan approval write-ups, preparing loan documentation, ensuring proper Jena Chance loan booking and administration, report preparation, and much more,” said Steve Maxwell, executive vice president and chief lending officer. “She is being recognized for her hard work, her knowledge of her job and the bank, and her constant efforts to improve herself and her value to the bank and her team.”

NONPROFIT NEWS Kitsap Regional Library wins national award for marketing Kitsap Regional Library has won national recognition for its marketing campaign for the 2013 One Book, One Community program. KRL was informed recently that it is one of eight recipients nationally of the John Cotton Dana Award. The award honors effective strategic communication campaigns that show results – no matter what size or type of library. Winners receive a $10,000 cash award from the H.W. Wilson Foundation, and up to eight awards are presented annually. Kitsap Regional Library is the only library in the Pacific Northwest to win an award this year. The award citation states: “The staff at Kitsap Regional Library used technology and guerilla marketing techniques to connect their local community around the book The Leisure Seeker. Books were placed in spots around town — on park benches, hanging from trees, in balloons in the town fountain — where people would stumble upon them unexpectedly. People were prompted to read the book and pass it along. “The result was a community read that was fun, accessible and reached an audience that the library might not have captured otherwise. Most impressive was that staff was engaged and excited about the project, sparking curiosity, building an emotional connection with the library and connecting

the larger community through reading.” The award will be presented to KRL Community Relations staff at the American Library Association Conference in June. KRL’s Community Relations staff consists of Jeannie Allen, Jeff Brody, David Frazier and Susan Rosapepe.

Youth soccer club gets grant for turf on Pendergrast Park fields The U.S. Soccer Foundation, the major charitable arm of soccer in the United States, announced it has awarded a grant totaling more than $140,000 to WestSound FC in Silverdale to support a field project in the community. The foundation awards grants to support nonprofit soccer programs and field-building initiatives nationwide. The WestSound FC has been working to install synthetic turf on two outdoor soccer fields at Pendergast Regional Park in Bremerton for yearround soccer play, and will utilize the grant to help complete the new turf fields. These grants were awarded as part of the U.S. Soccer Foundation’s latest grant cycle, which distributed 10 grants totaling more than $450,000 as part of the Safe Places to Play program. The program seeks to build or enhance field spaces in underserved areas in order to provide safe places for children to play. To learn more about the U.S. Soccer Foundation, visit www.ussoccerfoundation. org.


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FINANCIAL FOCUS | EDWARD JONES

Avoid problems by updating beneficiary designations (Article for use by Edward Jones financial advisor Glenn Anderson of Poulsbo.) Like many people, you might not particularly enjoy thinking about your estate plans, but such planning is necessary to make sure your assets go where you want them to go. And it’s just as important to regularly review your plans with your tax, legal and financial professionals in case any changes are needed. For instance, some of your wishes expressed in your will may be overridden by beneficiary designations you filled out years ago. If these designations become outdated, your assets could be passed to those you didn’t intend. You might be surprised at how many of your financial assets and legal documents have beneficiary designations tied to them. If you have an IRA, a 401(k) or other employer-sponsored retirement plan, a life insurance policy, an annuity, a transfer-on-death (TOD) arrangement, or any of a variety of

other assets or accounts, you almost certainly named a beneficiary. And this beneficiary designation offers a simple, direct and efficient way to get assets in the hands of your loved ones who survive you. However, as time goes by, you may experience many changes in your life — and when your life changes, your beneficiary designations may need to follow. But if you are like many people, you might forget to update these designations after a marriage, divorce or other change in your family situation. And because the beneficiary designation is a legally binding document, the asset will go to the person you once named as a beneficiary, regardless of your current relationship status. It really doesn’t take much effort to look over your accounts and legal arrangements to ensure that your beneficiary designations are current — and if they aren’t, it’s pretty easy to change them. In fact, for some financial

accounts, you may be able to update the beneficiary designations online. In any case, plan on reviewing your beneficiary designations regularly, but especially when you experience a change in your life. Here’s one more thing to keep in mind: Make sure your current beneficiaries are informed that they will eventually be receiving your 401(k), IRA, life insurance proceeds or other assets that require a beneficiary designation. This advance knowledge may help your loved ones as they plan and maintain their own financial and investment strategies. Although it’s clearly important for you to update your beneficiary designations and to communicate your actions, you will still need to attend to other areas of your estate planning, such as providing care for minor children or dependents, deciding who you want to receive specific items that do not carry a beneficiary designation, naming someone to manage your affairs should you become incapacitated, and specifying the control you wish your beneficiaries to have over their inheritance. These are just a few examples of estateplanning considerations. SEE BENEFICIARY | 38

Free yourself from cycle of emotional investing (Article for use by Edward Jones financial advisor Edward Finholm of Kingston.) In many areas of your life, you’re probably aware that it’s useful to keep emotions out of your decision-making — and that’s certainly the case with investing. However, it can be difficult to keep your feelings from influencing your investment decisions. But you may find it easier to invest with your head, rather than your heart, if you know a little something about two different cycles: the market cycle and your emotional cycle. Let’s start with the market cycle. If you’ve been investing for a while, you’re aware (probably highly aware) that the financial markets are rarely static — they are always moving up and down, at least in the short term. (Over the very long term, a period of many decades, the markets have trended up.) But these short-term movements, while perhaps appearing as “zigs” and “zags” on a

daily basis, actually form a pattern, or a cycle, that can last for months or years. These cycles are known as bull (up) or bear (down) markets. Going back to the Great Depression, the average bear market has lasted 21 months, while the average bull market has extended for 57 months, according to research from Standard and Poor’s Index Services. These market cycles greatly influence investors’ attitudes and behavior. In fact, they lead to the formation of investors’ emotional cycles. During bull markets, investors tend to feel optimism, excitement and even euphoria. But once a bull market ends and a bear market begins, investors start getting nervous. And the longer and deeper the bear market, the greater the depth of emotion felt by investors. These emotions can begin as anxiety and then progress to denial, fear, desperation and panic. Furthermore, market cycles and emotional cycles don’t really SEE EMOTIONAL | 38


38 |JUNE 2014 EMOTIONA L | F ROM 37

align. For example, investors may well experience euphoria when the market has reached its high point and a bear market has just begun. For a while, then, these investors, fueled by their euphoric feelings over the big gains they’ve achieved, may continue pouring money into the market, even as it’s declining. This type of behavior, though, is probably better suited for when the market is already at a low, when investors’ dollars will buy more shares. Conversely, investors may reach the peak of their fearfulness at the end of a bear market, just when things are about to turn around. At this point, their fear may hold them back from investing — even though, with prices low, it can be a good time to invest. Clearly, basing investment decisions on emotions can lead to poor choices. So don’t get caught up in this pattern. Instead, strive to follow a disciplined approach to investing. Build an investment portfolio that reflects your objectives, risk tolerance and time horizon, and seek to hold appropriate investments for the long term. Of course, you may well need to make adjustments along the way, but do it for the right reasons — such as a change in your goals or in the investments themselves — rather than as a reaction to the current market cycle. Our emotions are powerful, and their power can increase when applied to such a meaningful aspect of our life as our finances. But if you can detach yourself, as much as possible, from the emotional cycle of investing, you can avoid considerable angst — while helping clear the path to pursue your goals. BEN EFICI A RY | F ROM 37

Because everyone’s situation is different, you will need to consult with your legal advisor to determine the level of estate planning you require. As we’ve seen, updating your beneficiary is one piece of the puzzle — but to leave the legacy you desire, you’ve got to complete the picture.

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REGIONAL ECONOMY | JOHN POWERS

Why endeavor to develop our economy? … the answer lies at the core of our purpose, passion, commitment to our communities’ future. “To Survive and Thrive!” This was the overarching collective response of the economic development leaders gathered at our alliance’s recent board retreat when asked: “What’s our intention as economic development leaders — what’s the deeper purpose (the Big ”Why”) that is worthy of our best efforts to work together to develop our local and regional economy?” The room was instantly abuzz with robust dialog as three dozen business and community leaders from Kitsap and our neighboring counties (Pierce, King and Snohomish) endeavored to answer this simple, yet seminal, question posited by our esteemed organizational development coach, Denise Thomson, Ed. D. Dr. Thomson, with deep roots in our community, was pres-

Small business owners in survey see stronger local economy Business Examiner

Washington small business owners are feeling better about the economic conditions here than those at the national level, according to results of the 2014 U.S. Bank Small Business Annual Survey. The survey polled 3,173 small businesses in the 25 states where the bank does business, including 200 in Washington, each with $10 million or less in annual revenue. For the first time in the survey’s five-year history, the majority (53 percent) said the Washington economy is in a recovery. They were significantly more likely than the national responders to describe their local economy as stronger than the national. Washington small business owners’ favorable take on local economy is reflected in business conditions. Seven in ten (70 percent) described the financial health of their business as “good,” “very good” or “excellent.” Nearly three in four (74 percent) report-

ent to facilitate our annual planning session conducted via “World Café” protocols. This participatory format was well embraced by our board and did, in fact, yield answers with conviction. One leader after another reiterated their common and primary purpose as economic development leaders was to challenge the status quo and forge a visionary course for their respective communities that would insure Kitsap, King, Snohomish and Pierce counties (the Seattle Region) “Survive and Thrive” in an ever increasingly competitive global economy. Kitsap Bank CEO and KEDA board chair Steve Politakis opened the World Café by welcoming our regional guests (Jeff Lyon and Susan Suess from the Tacoma-Pierce EDB, David Allen and Suzanne Dale-Estes from the Seattle King County EDC, and Patrick Pierce from Snohomish County and program manager for the Central Puget Sound Economic Development District). Steve thanked

ed flat or higher revenue than last year. They attributed their optimistic sentiment to general business growth locally, lower unemployment and an uptick in demand. Despite their strong sentiments, only 15 percent

his board peers for their dedicated service, in particular Scott Bosch, retiring CEO of Harrison Medical Center, for his distinguished leadership; and he shared a clear message regarding the value of collaborating on a regional basis to strengthen our collective economic competitiveness. In the opening round of round café table talk, Jeff Lyon, CEO of Kidder Mathews and chair of the Tacoma-Pierce Economic Development Board, was among the first to articulate the clear purpose for why civic and business leaders band together to pursue economic development. As he spoke you could see the collective body nodding in affirmation of his answer: “We pursue economic development in order that our communities can survive and indeed thrive in a highly competitive global marketplace; we believe we alter the status quo, and influence the course of our economic future — we make a difference in building stronger communities.” As I listened to the ebb and flow

of Washington small business owners said they plan to add to staff in the next year, compared with 20 percent nationally, and 27 percent said they were likely to make a capital expenditure in the next year, compared with 29 percent na-

of the conversations, I was reminded of Congressman Derek Kilmer’s economic development mantra: “We must commit to competing with everyone, everywhere, everyday.” As the World Café drew to a close, I was grateful that Dr. Thomson had indeed focused our discussions on the most essential question facing any organization (private enterprise or public entity): “Why do you do what you do?” The answer was simple: “We do what we do because we believe we can challenge the status quo; and, in fact, create change for the better.” We all reaffirmed our belief in the old adage — if you’re not moving forward, you’re going backwards. As economic development leaders we don’t simply have a plan; we have a dream, a dream for a healthier and more prosperous community, a dream that we pursue each and every day in collaboration with enthusiasm and conviction. Dare to dream, it can make all the difference. Thanks Doctor Denise for a thoroughly invigorating and inspirational World Café experience. On Kitsap! • John Powers is executive director of the Kitsap Economic Development Alliance.

tionally. Concern about healthcare is not the top national issue for Washington small business owners in 2014, although the majority (54 percent) said that they believe the national health care reform law will

be negative for their business in the long run, in line with the national average. Instead, they named the federal budget as their top concern. A full breakdown of the survey is available online, as well as local highlights.


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Kitsap Peninsula Business Journal 27/06  

The June 2014 edition of the Kitsap Peninsula Business Journal.

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