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Everson-Nooksack News

Lynden Tribune  |  Wednesday, July 11, 2018


Fun for all at cities’ Summer Festival Everson and Nooksack to be abuzz with community events   EVERSON-NOOKSACK — Fun for the whole family is promised at the Summer Festival happening in the city parks of both towns this weekend.   The Everson-Nooksack Chamber of Commerce, along with plenty other community groups and individuals, provide the organization behind all the activities.    Maybe most important is that the chamber serves ice cream and raspberries or ice cream cones at its booth in Everson City Park.    Here’s a rundown:    • The 3-on-3 youth basketball tournament will be held Friday evening (6 p.m. start) and Saturday (12:30 p.m.) on Miller Courts in Everson. Divisions are based on 2018-19 grade level.    • The Everson Lions Club barbecue, open to the public, is 5:30 to 7 p.m. in Everson City Park.    • Both Friday and Saturday, the Everson Library has a used book sale in the space behind Peoples Bank as well as a table set up in City Park.    • Check out the many food and crafts vendors in City Park Friday afternoon and evening and on into Saturday. Kids’ games are 1:30 to 2:15 p.m. Saturday.    • The senior center pancake breakfast is from 7:30 to 10 a.m. Saturday, with a 4H club involved in serving and Charlie Rossi on

Kids going into grades 2 through 8 can participate in the Everson 3-on-3 basketball tournament Friday evening and Saturday. The festival parade rolls at 11 a.m. Saturday. (Courtesy photo) the piano.    • A softball tournament is ongoing all day Saturday and on into Sunday in Riverside Park.    • In Everson City Park, the live music at 6 p.m. Friday evening is Still Kick’n, then The Packstrings at 2 p.m. Saturday.    • The Everson Rally car show, led by Martin Zavala, is Saturday till 2 p.m. in the Nylatech parking lot, also featuring Barebones Bar-

becue.    • An old-fashioned family parade travels slowly down Main Street, starting from Christ Fellowship Church (a change from past) at 11 a.m. Saturday. See tractors, floats, collector cars, horses, bicycles, and entries on foot. Families are invited to set up lawn chairs along the sidewalk. Judging precedes at 10 to 10:30 a.m. The parade grand marshals

are the Marva Powell family.    • The Nooksack Valley 5K fun run/walk is at 8 a.m. Sunday, July 15, starting and ending in Everson City Park. The $20 registration benefits the Nooksack Valley Athletic Club.    • The Glen Echo Community Club’s horseshoe tournament ($3 per person) and potluck dinner are in Nooksack City Park from 3 to 5:30 p.m. Sunday. Bring a dish

to share, and your own plates and eating utensils.    Festival T-shirts are available already for $10 at the Everson and Nooksack city halls.    Festival sponsors are Peoples Bank, Nylatech, Jim’s Automotive Experts, Cedarprime, Tiger Construction, Kelley Insurance, Nooksack Animal Hospital, Nooksack Valley Drug and GrowSource.


Lynden Tribune | Wednesday, July 11, 2018


Betsy’s gardening impulse runs deep Two-acre backyard oasis welcomes humans and animals alike By Elisa Claassen for the Lynden Tribune

   EVERSON — Longtime Everson Garden Club member Betsy Van Weerdhuizen has a garden that is both surprising for its content and for being a wildlife sanctuary. Multiple sections reveal a pond fed by a natural spring, raised vegetable beds (with fencing to protect from abundant rabbits this year), several seating areas surrounded by abundant blooms, a large greenhouse and a shabby chic cottage named the “She Shed.”    “I was always interested in gardening and flowers from a young girl,” Betsy said. “My mom didn’t have time to do much gardening, so she kind of gave me free rein in the yard to do whatever I wanted. I can only imagine the mess I probably made, but I was so thrilled.”    While her mother wasn’t a gardener, other family members were. “Both of my grandmas were gardeners. They had small gardens, but had totally different styles. One grandma loved the cottage style and her garden was “blowsy” and flamboyant and overflowing with flowers. My other grandma was very neat, tidy, and very organized with strict borders. I loved both of their gardens and decided one day I wanted to have a garden that was a combination of both their styles.”    The Van Weerdhuizens have lived on their Oat Coles Road property for 32 years. Three years ago, Betsy retired as an elementary-level librarian in the Nooksack Valley School District. The spacious garden setting was developed during her working years and now continues to be enjoyed in retirement. A grandson can run through and play in a self-proclaimed “secret garden” where he maintains some of his toys out of view of most adults.    In August 2017 Betsy’s oldest son, Travis, got married in the garden and his bride Kali prepared herself for the ceremony in the now-decorated shed, Betsy said. The shed was once on a neighboring property just a few feet from the roadway and was used as a garage. The Van Weerdhuizens purchased that site and decided to rescue

The spacious and varied garden on Oat Coles Road has been developed and altered by many hours of work by Betsy Van Weerdhuizen over many years. (Elisa Claassen/Lynden Tribune) the small structure from rot that was starting. Using a bit of strategy to maneuver it off the property, Darrel managed to relocate it to his shop where it sat for two more years until arriving at its current garden spot in a much finer state of affairs. Although it has no heat nor insulation, it now contains an assortment of knickknacks, windows to the garden, music and seating where Betsy can relax in the warmer months.    Darrel, with a background in construction and equipment operation, has been instrumental in the garden’s development too, according to Betsy. “He has encouraged me all along, helped make my visions come to life and added his

own ideas in certain projects. Darrel and our youngest son, Chase, built our greenhouse. We own heavy equipment, so that really helps too. All in all, it’s been a joint effort.”    Betsy’s large and friendly dog Poppy lopes by and finds a place in the shade. The lush garden does not maintain itself, she points out, and Betsy sometimes puts in 10-hour days to weed, mulch and maintain it all. One “enemy” is horsetail, which she finds difficult to eliminate. Five truckloads of mulching material obtained from a local farm came to the farm, decomposed further over the winter, and is used to feed the beds through the summer.

   The garden, visited by garden friends and family, was open to the public in 2007 via the annual Whatcom Horticultural Society’s garden tour fundraiser. To prepare, Betsy went out to the garden at 4 a.m. at first light before work and returned after work until dark — for about six weeks. “It has changed a lot since then, as a garden is always evolving.”    The front yard, with a vine-covered front seating area adjacent to the home, has views of the neighbor’s small herd of cows. This was established first before she expanded her gardening to the back of the Continued on the next page



Lynden Tribune | Wednesday, July 11, 2018


July 13-14-15 A delightully reclaimed old structure (below) is the restful working center of Betsy Van Weerdhuizen’s garden, which also has its shaded and shrouded parts (above). (Elisa Claassen/Lynden Tribune) house. The back of the garden has paths through arches and bushes and a wooded section with a bridge over a pond resulting from a natural spring containing a lot of minerals.    Betsy encourages new gardeners to ask lots of questions of experienced gardeners. She joined the Everson Garden Club, visited other gardens, and then learned by experience. “Read up on your

interests and don’t be afraid to make mistakes. I always say I’ve probably killed more plants than most people have attempted to grow, but I keep trying.”    The Everson Garden Club is open to new members. It was organized in 1990 and sponsors an annual plant sale in the spring, small field trips and monthly meetings. For more information, see its Facebook page or call 360-592-5456.

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Lions Club BBQ 3-on-3 Basketball Tournament Live Music Seniors Pancake Breakfast Softball Tournament Main Street Parade Kids Games

5K Fun Run/Walk Sunday, July 15th @ 8AM EVERSON CITY PARK

Nooksack Valley 5K Fun Run/Walk Annual Glen Echo Community Club’s Horseshoe Tournament & Potluck Dinner


Lynden Tribune | Wednesday, July 11, 2018


Matters of the Mind

Former radio DJ 'Dave Anthony' Fero of Nooksack starts a podcast for mental illness support By Elisa Claassen for the Lynden Tribune

   NOOKSACK — Out of the darkness and into the light. Diseases such as heart attack and cancers are more easily understood — and talked about more openly. However, many people have depression or anxiety, but it isn’t so easy to talk about being in dark places. Few people host events to fundraise for those.    David “Dave Anthony” Fero started in radio at age 17, dropping out of high school to follow his passion with mentors schooling him along the way. His entry led on to bigger stations such as K-LOVE that then had 50 outlets and now has 600 outlets into global markets. “There are potentially a billion customers,” he clarified.    Fero stayed in radio for about 33 years. Dave Anthony was his radio name. He was briefly at Seattle stations KMPS Country and KBSG Oldies when he “hit the wall.” At that point he was self-admittedly “not reliable” and he abruptly left his work without much explanation. A drug addiction and a mental illness were at the core of the “bad dark place” he found himself in, he said. In recent years, he has lived a quieter life away from the audiences of radio.    Dave and his wife Lisa moved to Nooksack three years ago this August after living in Bellingham. Born in New York, Dave es-

sentially considers Alaska to be his home, but in radio he lived and worked in many marketplaces. It was in the late 1980s, during his first marriage in Phoenix, that he was diagnosed with manic depression, now commonly known as bipolar disorder, in which moods spiral up and plummet down. As part of this, he takes medications and faces regular blood draws to determine how the medications are impacting his body’s organs.    What prompted the diagnosis? Dave thinks for a moment and then says he is a high-functioning bipolar much like the late actor Robin Williams. Williams would get his laughs and applause and then retreat for quiet — which Dave identifies with and does as well. The death of his mother in 1985 caused him to think a bit and actually go back to church and to get diagnosed.    He had been in a childhood of much trauma, starting in his home of origin and continuing into seven foster care homes and seven schools, all of that being destabilizing: “You never knew when the shoe would drop.” With so many abrupt changes in his young life, it was hard to find and keep friends, he said.    In recent years at their faith community, North County Christ the King in Lynden, Dave and his wife have been actively involved in the Troubled Minds group. It is for those impacted by mental health issues, an opportunity to come together in a safe place to talk and learn. Dave said he had a new experience not found in radio: “Seeing others face to face … up close and personal.”    “I felt I hadn’t finished the job (after leaving radio),” he said.    He sees three ways to achieve any change: planting, maintaining or harvesting. So he is now planting seeds of hope by edu-

“Dave Anthony” Fero finds renewal and health living in a small town like Nooksack. (Elisa Claassen/Lynden Tribune) cating the public. He has replaced a recording booth with a home studio and can edit in his dining room with his laptop across from his wife on her laptop.    In the past month, Dave and Lisa have decided to use social media as a platform to connect his honed on-air skills with those often hurting alone. “Matters of the Mind” has a growing base of followers on Facebook and Instagram as well as YouTube and other audio platforms. Connections inside

the mental health world and broadcasting community are giving rise to more growth — leading to support for those involved.    The talk is real and raw. This couple speaks openly, with touches of humor intermixed. Not only does Dave have his struggles, but Lisa has anxiety and depression, she said. While they speak from their faith background, they don’t want to overwhelm listeners with “Christianese.” Anyone can Continued on the next page

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Lynden Tribune | Wednesday, July 11, 2018

benefit from the discussion. They both see education about mental illnesses as stopping stigmas.    The leading mental illnesses diagnosed are anxiety and depression. What is daily life like in their household? Dave also has difficulty as a germophobe, although the up side is having a really clean house, Lisa said, laughing.    Dave says he is seeing positive change happening in his personal life as he builds this project. Children from his first marriage are reconnecting with him. “My son came back. He said, ‘My dad is doing something amazing’.” He also heard from a friend from the radio world he had lost touch with 40 years ago.    For those living with mental illness, Dave said he views dealing with it as “seasons.” He finds that some medications will work for a season and then will need to be reassessed. Body chemistry can change.    Dave’s approach: “If this season is bad, the next season will be better.”    While both Dave and Lisa approach life through faith, they welcome anyone struggling with mental health issues to join the online community they are offering from wherever they happen to be, inside Whatcom County or beyond.    Contact Dave and Lisa Fero at

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Lynden Tribune | Wednesday, July 11, 2018



Nooksack Valley grad hikes the PCT Katy Shaw, trail name ‘Rambling Unicorn,’ was inspired by the 'Wild' book of Cheryl Strayed

Stop waiting — hit the trail    At age 22, author Cheryl Strayed had been through a lot of loss before she decided to venture out onto the Pacific Coast Trail. Eventually, her book about the experience became a popular movie of the same title. Many readers were inspired to seek their own lost-to-found experience along the trail.    “I knew that if I allowed fear to overtake me, my journey was doomed. Fear, to a great extent, is born of a story we tell ourselves, and so I chose to tell myself a different story from the one women are told. I decided I was safe. I was strong. I was brave. Nothing could vanquish me.” — Cheryl Strayed, “Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail,” published in 2012, New York Times bestseller

By Elisa Claassen for the Lynden Tribune

   EVERSON — Katy Shaw decided it was time for a change for her too.    “One day,” she said, telling her own story, “I decided to stop waiting for someone else to teach me about hiking and just figure it out on my own. So I got some books from the library and did some internet research. I read about the 10 essentials and bought some gear.”    Shaw, who got the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) moniker “Rambling Unicorn,” had grown up hiking, “but I didn’t stick with it as an adult.” Her parents Dennis, a former City of Everson employee, and Eileen, current Everson Library manager, took the family on lots of hikes when the children were younger. “Once I moved to Seattle, however, I didn’t know many other people who were into hiking. It never occurred to me to go hiking on my own or to organize a hike. I always wanted to explore the outdoors, but didn’t have confidence in my outdoor skills.”    The first step was local hikes close to Seattle and then overnight hikes — by herself. Gaining more confidence, she expanded her thinking and goals.    “Around this time, I read ‘Wild’ by Cheryl Strayed. I had heard about the PCT a long time ago — and thought longingly of hiking it — but assumed that I could never attempt

something that amazing. But when I read ‘Wild,’ something changed. I was older, more confident, and ready for a new challenge. And, if Cheryl Strayed could do it, then so could I.”    Approaching a 2,650-mile trail isn’t done overnight. “I didn’t hit the trail unprepared after that. I planned my hike for several It was a welcome-home feeling to cross the trail’s border into Washington State. (Courtesy photo/Katy Shaw)

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years and did a lot of research in preparation, but I was inspired by ‘Wild’ and Strayed’s other writings as well.”    The 1995 Nooksack Valley High School graduate, who moved to Seattle after graduation to obtain her undergraduate and master’s degrees from the University of Washington, chose to leave her position as a senior project manager at Microsoft — which she later returned to after hiking — in order to start the hike at the southern end, the Mexico border.    The geography of the PCT encompasses warmer and cooler temperatures and diverse scenery traversing the High Sierra and Cascade mountain ranges. While most people strive to hike the trail in one year continuously, also known as a “through hike,” Katie opted to start in April 2017 at Campo, California, and break up the hike once she came to the Sierra Mountains and encountered snow that had not melted yet. Small creeks had become raging torrents. Safety was an issue.


Lynden Tribune | Wednesday, July 11, 2018


   She detoured to Ashland, Oregon, and approached the trail from that side into Northern California. She hiked to Seiad Valley, skipped ahead another 150 miles to Dunsmuir due to more snow, and into Sierra City. Unfortunately, illness came and she was sidelined for several weeks to heal. Katy’s Journey In Her Own Words    “Once I recovered, I traveled back to Dunsmuir and picked up the 150 miles I had previously skipped in Northern California. Then I hitchhiked to Ashland and from there continued hiking north. The snow was finally starting to melt out at this time, but then the wildfires began. I had to skip about 20 miles of trail near Crater Lake and another 100 miles of trail near Sisters (Oregon) due to wildfires.    “I crossed the Bridge of the Gods into the state of Washington and made it another Continued on the next page

The selfie at left is of a sunrise in California. Right, Katie checks into the register atop Mt. Whitney. (Courtesy photos/Katy Shaw)

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Lynden Tribune | Wednesday, July 11, 2018

ENN8 40 miles or so before I had to leave the trail again due to another wildfire. This time I decided to head down to the High Sierras as the rest of Washington was more or less on fire. By that time it was September and the snow was long melted. I traveled to Lone Pine, CA and started hiking north through John Muir’s famed Range of Light. I made it all the way to Yosemite when the snow started falling and I decided it was time to go home. I ended up hiking 1,812 out of the 2,650 miles in 2017.” Seeing the Columbia River Fire    One of her most memorable times was a sad one. While meeting her partner Daniel to rest over the Labor Day weekend, she witnessed a large fire growing along the Columbia Gorge.    “I was exhausted and looking forward to a soft bed and a bath after spending the previous 4 1/2 months sleeping on the ground. We spent most of the weekend binge-watching “Game of Thrones” in our hotel room. The last day of the weekend, we were having dinner across the Columbia River in Stevenson when we saw a giant plume of smoke rising from the other side of the Columbia Gorge. Alarmed, we raced back and could see flames a few miles from our hotel in Cascade Locks. It was the Eagle Creek Fire, which was started by some teenagers (although we didn’t know it at the

time). The hotel staff advised us to be ready for evacuation at any time, and sure enough we were evacuated at 6 a.m.    “We piled into the car and were about to drive across the Columbia River, when I remembered that the Bridge of the Gods is technically part of the PCT. I needed to cross the bridge on foot in order to officially complete this section of the PCT. So I got out and waved to Daniel and he drove across the bridge. I walked across the Bridge of the Gods at 6:30 a.m. with flames from the Eagle Creek wildfire visible in the hills behind me and smoke billowing into the sky.”    Note: Katy blogged every day while she hiked. Her writing is at She presented a slide show program at the Everson Library this spring. She intends to write a lengthy blog with detailed recommendations to other hikers specifically preparing for the PCT. Hike Your Own Hike – Katy Shaw    “Hike your own hike.” It’s a phrase you’ll hear through hikers say over and over again. It’s important to remember why you’re hiking in the first place and to not get too caught up in what everyone else is doing. I had to let go of my dream of a traditional continuous through hike early on when I realized I wasn’t going fast enough

Katy Shaw celebrates reaching the 700-mile mark of her 2017 trek of the Pacific Crest Trail. She would go 1,812 miles in all. (Courtesy photo/Katy Shaw) and when I got sick. I decided I would just stick with it and hike as many miles as possible — to push myself, but not to the point where I was totally miserable. And I’m so

glad I did. It was the right choice for me and for my situation. I still have over 800 miles of the PCT waiting for me, which I’ll tackle in sections in upcoming years.”

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Everson-Nooksack News July 2018  
Everson-Nooksack News July 2018