Page 1

families today July 2017


volume 7, issue 3

A publication for families living on the North Olympic Peninsula, and a special supplement produced by the Peninsula Daily News and Sequim Gazette.



Trails to explore, camping and more right outside your front door — Page 8 Summer lunch programs underway — Page 4 Find out how to attract butterflies to your home garden, yard — Page 12 And much more inside

Peninsula Families Today is looking for story ideas, news tips and more Peninsula Families Today is a family-focused publication and is inserted into both the Peninsula Daily News and Sequim Gazette. Please let us know what you’d like to see in the next issue of Peninsula Families Today. This publication welcomes input and new contributors. Educators, parents and professionals in their fields are invited to contribute informative and educational articles or columns for consideration. We cannot guarantee publication due to space and content considerations. If your submission is accepted, we reserve the right to edit it. Send articles, columns and photos (JPEGs at 200 dpi minimum) to section editor Brenda Hanrahan at bhanrahan@peninsuladailynews.com. For details, phone 360-452-2345.

families today PENINSULA

Published by the Peninsula Daily News and Sequim Gazette advertising department Peninsula Daily News 305 W. First St. Port Angeles, WA 98362 360-452-2345


Sequim Gazette 147 W. Washington St. Sequim, WA 98382 360-683-3311

Ella McFarland, 7, of Port Angeles and her dog, Angus, enjoy an afternoon exploring the former site of Lake Aldwell in the Elwha River Valley. Photo by Becky McFarland

Terry R. Ward, regional publisher Steve Perry, general manager Patricia Morrison Coate, Brenda Hanrahan and Laura Lofgren, special sections editors

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Find out more about the programs near you: Port Angeles: (360) 207-5663, peninsulaprethree@gmail.com Port Townsend: (360) 390-5239, membership@ptplayschool.org Joyce: (360) 928-3878, crescentcooperativepreschool@gmail.com

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Where parents and children have learned together since 1973 SPECIAL SUPPLEMENT TO PENINSULA DAILY NEWS AND SEQUIM GAZETTE

Outdoor concerts underway across North Olympic Peninsula by PENINSULA DAILY NEWS

Attending an outdoor concert is fun for the entire family, especially during mild summer evenings. A variety of free outdoor public concerts will be held in communities across the North Olympic Peninsula this summer including:


The Sequim 2017 Music in the Park series runs from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. every Tuesday through Aug. 29 at the James Center for the Performing Arts, 350 N. Blake Ave. Sequim city organizers encourage attendees to bring chairs or blankets and picnic baskets to the concerts. The lineup for the rest of the summer, according to www.sequimwa.gov, is: v Aug. 1 — Blue Rhinos; blues v Aug. 8 — Annual karaoke night; karaoke contest v Aug. 15 — Caribe Steel Band v Aug. 22 — Navy Band of the NW; popular music v Aug. 29 — Stardust Big Band


The Concerts on the Pier series, organized by the Port Angeles Regional Chamber of Commerce, runs every Wednesday evening throughout the summer through Sept. 20. Concerts will begin at 6 p.m. at City Pier, with parking at Lincoln Street and Railroad Avenue.

Vendors will sell food and beverages. If heavy wind or bad weather is expected, the performances might be moved to The Gateway pavilion, located at the corner of Lincoln and Front streets. Audience members are encouraged to bring blankets or chairs to the informal, family-friendly performances. No smoking is allowed on City Pier during the concerts. The series lineup for the rest of the summer, according to www.portangeles.org, is: v July 26 — The Olson Bros Band; popular country v Aug. 2 — Black Diamond Junction; classic hits from the 1960s to 2000 v Aug. 9 — Blue Rhinos; blues v Aug. 16 — Testify; classic rock, blues and Southern rock v Aug. 23 — Black Door Alley; folk rock Shows will begin at 5 p.m. and end at 7:30 p.m. v Aug. 30 — Geoffrey Castle; violin virtuoso Bring a chair or a blanket and settle in for some great v Sept. 6 — The Olympic Express; big band tunes. v Sept. 13 — Black Rock; classic rock The series lineup, according to www.ptmainstreet.org, v Sept. 20 — Ranger & the “Re-Arrangers;” gypsy jazz is as follows: and swing v July 27 — Ranger & the Re-Arrangers v Aug. 3 — Uncle Funk & the Dope 6 CONCERTS ON THE DOCK v Aug. 10 — Rooster Crow Port Townsend Main Street’s Concerts on the Dock v Aug. 17 — Solvents & Famous Lucy summer music series will continue every Thursday v Aug. 24 — The High Council through Aug. 31 at Pope Marine Park Plaza, 607 Water St. v Aug. 31 — Kevin Mason and the PT All Stars The free concerts will offer local vendors and a beer, Bring a chair or a blanket and settle in for some great wine and cider garden. Seating will open at 4:30 p.m. tunes in great outdoor settings.

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Free summer food programs continue across the North Olympic Peninsula Supercenter, 1110 W. Washington St. The Port Angeles locations are the Port Angeles Boys & Girls Club, 2620 S. Francis St.; Dream Park, 298-300 S. Race St.; Evergreen Family Village, 2202 W. 16th St.; Jefferson Elementary, 218 E. 12th St.; and Shane Park, 613 S. G St.


Several food service programs are being held across the North Olympic Peninsula for children 18 and younger this summer. All programs are free with no financial limitations. None of the food programs requires registration. Here is a list of the programs: BOYS & GIRLS CLUBS OF THE OLYMPIC PENINSULA •  Sequim programs will be held through Friday, Aug. 25. •  Port Angeles programs will be held through Friday, Aug. 25. Food programs are offered Mondays through Fridays. Breakfast will be served from 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. Lunch will be served from noon to 1 p.m. The only exception is the lunch at Port Angeles High School, 304 E. Park Ave., which will be available through Tuesday, Aug. 1, from 11 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. The Sequim locations are the Boys & Girls Club, 400 W. Fir St.; Carrie Blake Park, 202 N. Blake Ave.; Elk Creek Apartments, 90 S. Rhodefer Road; Mountain View Court Apartments, 303 S. Fifth St.; and Walmart

LOWER ELWHA S’KLALLAM TRIBE The tribe’s program will be held Mondays through Fridays until Friday, Sept. 1. The lunches will be from noon to 1 p.m. at the Tribal Administration Building, 2851 Lower Elwha Road. The tribe’s program is sponsored by the state’s Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction. JEFFERSON COUNTY YMCA Several locations across East Jefferson County will host free lunches and snacks. •  Brinnon School, 46 Schoolhouse Road in Brinnon, will have lunches available from 11:30 a.m. to noon and snack from 9 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. Mondays through Thursdays through Thursday, Aug. 10. SUMMER FOOD PROGRAMS, continued on Page 5  >>

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>> SUMMER FOOD PROGRAMS, continued from Page 4 

•  Chimacum Elementary School, 91 West Valley Road, will have lunches from noon to 12:30 p.m. and snack from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. Mondays through Fridays through Friday, Aug. 18. •  The Jefferson County Library, 620 Cedar Ave., Port Hadlock, will have lunches from 1 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. Mondays through Fridays through Monday, July 31. •  Mountain View Commons, 1919 Blaine St., Port Townsend, will have lunches from noon to 12:30 p.m. and snack from 3 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. Mondays through Fridays until Friday, Sept. 1. •  Quilcene School, 294715 U.S. Highway 101 in Quilcene, will have lunches from 1 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. and snack from 3 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. Mondays through Fridays until Aug. 10. •  The Port Townsend Community Center, 620 Tyler St. in Port Townsend, will serve lunch from 12:30 p.m. to 1 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays until Sept. 1. In addition to providing free lunches and snacks across East Jefferson County, the Y will offer a literacy enrichment program for children ages 5 to 12 at the Brinnon, Chimacum and Quilcene locations. Preregistration is required for the program. To register, visit the Mountain View Commons or the website at www.olympicpeninsulaymca.org. The Y’s program also accepts volunteers. Those interested in volunteering can phone 360-3855811, or visit the facility at Mountain View Commons. The food programs are made available through the


Children receive free bagged lunches from volunteers at the Dream Playground in Port Angeles.

U.S. Department of Agriculture which “reimburses providers who serve healthy meals to children and teens in low-income areas during the summer months when school is not in session.” For more information about the tribe’s program, visit k12.wa.us/Child Nutrition/programs or phone Melissa

Gilman at 360-417-8545, ext. 2912. For more information about the Boys & Girls Clubs’ program, visit www.fns.usda.gov or phone Ryan Juel at 208-275-9699. For more information about the Y’s program, visit olympicpeninsulaymca.org/summermeals.

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Simplifying baby nutrition: Expert advice for infant first foods Choose a brand made with organic whole milk.


Your cooing, curious, incredibly cute baby is now 6 months old and you’ve got the go-ahead from your pediatrician to start solid foods. You both are excited to begin this new adventure, but when you head to the store, you are suddenly confused by a sea of options. Which foods are safe for your new little eater? Which offer the most nutrition? How do you know what is the best for your baby? If you’re feeling overwhelmed, you’re not alone. In research conducted by ORC International and Stonyfield, at least one-third of parents admit to feeding confusion during baby’s first months, and just over half (53 percent) feel overwhelmed by the varying opinions of early childhood nutrition. To help guide parents and caregivers, here are five important pieces of advice:


You might think it’s safer to avoid dairy products until infants are at least 12 months old. However, dairy is packed with essential nutrients (such as calcium and vitamin D) for growing bodies, and can be an important part of baby’s diet. The good news is babies as young as 6 months can begin eating yogurt, even if they’re breastfeeding. Not only is it a healthy option for their little bodies, you’ll find infants love yogurt.


Introducing baby’s first solids is a stressful time for parents, especially first-time parents. To keep it simple, reference a list of trusted foundation foods to ensure your baby is receiving the proper nutrients. Remember to check with your pediatrician before feeding your baby any new food groups and modify as needed to accommodate any food allergies. Some great foundation foods are eggs, prunes, avocados, fish, yogurt, cheese, nut butters, chicken, beans, lentils, berries, citrus fruits, green vegetables, whole grains and water. Mix and match these foods as your baby becomes more comfortable with solids.


Did you know gut health is the foundation for overall good health? To help protect your baby’s gut health, you want to ensure they’re getting enough probiotics. While naturally found in breast milk, probiotics are also found in yogurt. The probiotic BB-12 has been shown to have a digestive health benefit when consumed regularly as part of a balanced diet and healthy lifestyle by promoting beneficial gut bacteria and regular, soft stools. FIRST INFANT FOODS, continued on Page 7  >> 771906242

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>> FIRST INFANT FOODS, continued from Page 6 


Sugar is receiving a lot of attention in the news recently and many parents are looking more closely at labels when grocery shopping. In doing so, it’s important to understand the difference between naturally occurring sugar and added sugar. Wholesome foods like milk, yogurt and fruit have naturally occurring sugars that are part of a healthy diet. Many yogurts come in both plain and flavored varieties, and if you’re looking to control the amount of sweetness, you can purchase unsweetened yogurt, to which you can add your own mashed fruits.


Don’t be afraid to put down the spoon and let your little one try feeding themselves with some nutritious finger foods. Not only will baby explore new flavors and textures, but it’s an excellent way to practice fine-motor skills. A simple and nutrient-packed first finger food is berries cut into small pieces. The soft berries are easy for babies to pick up and they feel gentle against their gums. Introducing first foods to your baby doesn’t have to be a confusing process. By working with your pediatrician and keeping this information close at hand, you’ll be ready to expose baby to a whole new world of flavors.


As part of the North Olympic Library System’s annual Summer Reading Program, NOLS is working with the Parenting Matters Foundation and the First Teacher Program to bring BLOCK Fest to North Olympic Library System locations over the course of the summer. Build your way to fun at the Port Angeles Library, 2210 S. Peabody St., on Aug. 5 at 10:30 a.m., and join the building bonanza with the Sequim Library at the Sequim Middle School cafeteria, 301 W. Hendrickson Road, on Aug. 15 at 10:30 a.m. Parents and/or caregivers accompany their child and are strongly encouraged to join in the play. BLOCK Fest is a research-based block play program geared towards children from 8 months to 8 years with their caregivers. Children and adults can rotate from station to station in a self-guided tour to play with a variety of different blocks. More information about the Parenting Matters Foundation, the First Teacher Program and the research behind the BLOCK Fest phenomenon will be available during each library BLOCK Fest session.


The theme for the 2017 Summer Reading Program is “Build a Better World.” This summertime celebration, which encourages

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children to keep reading during the summer break from school, features a reading challenge and a multitude of events for all ages. Research shows that children who do not read during the summer experience “summer slide” and may lose up to a month of the instructional knowledge they gained during the previous school year. Library summer reading programs have been shown to help alleviate the “summer slide” by providing access to books, enrichment activities, and encouraging young people to keep reading. The Summer Reading Program runs through Saturday, Aug. 19. The Summer Reading Program is supported by the Friends of the Library at all four NOLS libraries. For more information about the Summer Reading Program and other events for young people, visit www. nols.org, phone 360-460-8500, or email youth@nols.org.


GET READY TO EXPLORE Outdoor adventures the entire family can enjoy this summer by PENINSULA DAILY NEWS

Experiencing summer on the Olympic Peninsula would not be complete without a few outdoor adventures with the family. Extended daylight hours, mild summer weather and plenty of things to see and do make the Peninsula a top destination for people from around the globe. Children have the added bonus of being out of school during the summer, so savoring every moment of the region’s sunniest season is easy. Here are just a few places to explore and experiences to add to your family’s summer bucket list: Hartlyn, 6, far left, Marnae, Leighton, 5, and Phoenix, 10, Flores of Port Angeles enjoy a view of Lake Crescent following a family day OLYMPIC NATIONAL PARK Olympic National Park features a vast range of hikes suitable for children of all ages. Children will enjoy stretching their legs on short trails at Hurricane Ridge, exploring the Hoh Rain Forest and strolling along coastal beaches. Along the way little ones will be learning about animals, trees and plants that call the park home. Children even have the chance to become an official junior Olympic National Park ranger. Free copies of the Olympic National Park Junior Ranger booklet can be picked up at any visitor center in the park. When children visit the park, they can complete the steps in the booklet to earn a junior ranger badge. The park also offers the Ocean Steward Junior Ranger Program, a fun, hands-on program for children ages 4 and older. Children are encouraged to explore the area’s coastal ecosystem, learn new facts and understand how to help protect Olympic National Park’s wilderness coast and the Pacific Ocean. Download and print the Ocean Steward Junior Ranger book at www.nps.gov/olym or obtain a free copy at any visitor center within the park. Children who complete the book according to the instructions will receive an Ocean Steward Patch. A park pass may be required at entrance stations. An annual park pass costs $50 and is good at any Olympic National Park entrance station for one year from the month of purchase. A consecutive seven-day park pass costs $25 per vehicle, or $10 for individuals on foot, bicycle or motorcycle. Children 15 years old and younger are admitted free of charge. Some of the more popular family-friendly trails that are appropriate for young children include: •  Hurricane Hill — The 3-mile round-trip trek begins from a parking area and climbs about 950 feet 8  PENINSULA FAMILIES TODAY  JULY 2017

hike along the Mount Storm King trail. The family rested and refueled before the trek down the mountain. Photo by Jeromiah Flores

to offer amazing views of the Olympic Mountains, Strait of Juan de Fuca and British Columbia. The mostly paved trail is well-maintained. Children have a chance to watch deer and Olympic marmots feeding on wildflowers and grasses. Bears can sometimes be viewed in distant valleys. Stop at informational signs to identify mountain peaks and wildlife. Encourage children to try to identify wildflowers that bloom along the trail and learn about animals that live in the area. Be sure to pack a camera to let little ones try their hand at nature photography and to take photos of them enjoying the stroll. •  Heart o’ the Hills Campground, located just off Hurricane Ridge Road, is one of the park’s most popular family camping areas. With 105 campsites, this first-come, first-served campground is surrounded by old-growth trees. •  Lake Crescent — Cool off on a warm summer day by spending some time at Lake Crescent. Corded-off areas near East Beach and Fairholme are considered swimming areas, but children need to be supervised by parents or guardians at all times. •  Fairholme Campground, open May to October, is a popular summer destination for families. The first-come, first-served campground features 88 sites, including lakeside camping opportunities and a nearby boat launch. •  Marymere Falls — A 1.8-mile round-trip trail starts by following the shoreline of Lake Crescent before leading people through old-growth forest to reach the waterfall. For about the first three-quarters of a mile of the trail, wheelchairs may be used with assistance. Children will enjoy crossing Barnes Creek over a rustic log bridge and will be amazed by the size of some of the trees located just off the trail.

The final trek to the falls is a steep uphill climb with the choice of two lookouts: one about 50 feet above the falls and the other at its base. For a more ambitious hike, venture off the trail to the falls at the Mount Storm King trailhead. •  Storm King — A 3.8-mile roundtrip trail may not sound like much, but this is a calf-burning uphill trek that is ranked difficult. With an elevation gain of about 1,700 feet, switchbacks and occasional flat areas are a welcome reprieve to rest and rehydrate. On your way up the mountain, you will be treated to glimpses of Aurora Ridge and Lake Crescent, but the ultimate reward is at 1.4 miles, where on a clear day you will reach a stunning view of the azure lake below. Use extreme caution at this 2,000-foot elevation area, as a ledge drops abruptly to the north. A second viewpoint of the Barnes Creek Valley can be reached in another 0.5 miles, but the trail is narrow and unstable, requiring the use of unmaintained ropes, making it unsuitable for young hikers. •  Ancient Groves Nature Trail — For a look at some more old-growth trees, venture into the Sol Duc Valley and stop at this self-guided nature trail. The loop is less than a mile long and offers views of tall trees and the Sol Duc River from above. •  Ruby Beach — This easy-to-access beach is located about 35 miles south of Forks. The beach is known for its pinkish sands, which derive color from tiny grains of garnet. Take in a sunset to fully appreciate the pink glow of the sands. A short trail through a green canopy of trees leads to a pile of driftwood that children should be careful climbing over to reach a sandy stretch of beach. Several sea stacks, Cedar Creek and its wide lagoon and Destruction Island Lighthouse add to the allure of Ruby Beach. READY TO EXPLORE continued on Page 9  >>


shorter), several picnic tables (some with fire pits), public beach access, a vault toilet and a parking area. Drive north out of Sequim on Sequim-Dungeness Way. Turn right on Port Williams Road (at the roundabout) and this road will take you into the park. •  Salt Creek Recreation Park — This 196-acre Clallam County park is located near Joyce off state Highway 112. As one of the county’s most popular parks, it offers visitors forests, rocky bluffs, tide pools, a sandy stretch of beach and campsites. The park features panoramic views of the Strait of Juan de Fuca, Crescent Bay and Vancouver Island. Salt Creek is a wonderful place to view wildlife, especially birds. In fact, the park is on the National Audubon’s Olympic Loop of the Greater Washington State Birding Trail. ABOVE: Ella McFarland, 7, and Jonah, 10, of Port Angeles enjoy a trip The area was once the location of Camp Hayden, a to Port Williams beach in Sequim with their dog, Angus. Photo by World War II harbor defense military base. Remnants Becky McFarland of two concrete bunkers can be viewed. The base was LEFT: Taedon, 10, Boston Pietrafeso, 8, and their father, Rocco decommissioned at the end of World War II. Pietrafeso, of Port Angeles pose for a photo during a family hiking trip. Children can learn about sea life while exploring Photo by Andrea Pietrafeso the adjacent Tongue Point Marine Life Sanctuary. The area includes a rocky outcropping that, at state parks. For more information, visit www.parks. low tide, reveals starfish, sea urchins, limpets, sea wa.gov/167/Discover-Pass-Fees. cucumbers and other forms of marine life. Camping near the beach at Fort Worden is available >> READY TO EXPLORE, continued from Page 8  Take care when exploring tide pools to make sure at one of 50 full-service sites with views of the Strait of the delicate sea life is not harmed by feet, fingers, Juan de Fuca, Admiralty Inlet and Mount Baker, or go sticks or other objects. Children will enjoy exploring tide pools and up the hill to 30 more private and primitive sites. searching for a perfectly round beach cobble. Salt Creek also provides access to the state’s Striped Reservations are highly recommended. Phone 360Care should be taken when allowing children to Peak Recreation Area, which features hiking and approach the ocean. The Kalaloch-strip of beaches 344-4400 for more information. mountain bike trails. experiences strong and unexpected riptides. •  Dungeness Spit and Dungeness National For details, visit www.clallam.net/Parks/SaltCreek. •  Kalaloch Campground — This easily-accessed Wildlife Refuge — The 261-acre refuge is home html. campground is a paradise for youngsters. to more than 250 species of birds, 41 species of land n La Push — Made famous by Twilight movies Online reservations are accepted for the 170-site mammals and eight species of marine mammals. and books, LaPush has been a summer destination campground through Sept. 23. Visit www.nps.gov/ Stretching 5.5 miles to the New Dungeness Light for locals and visitors alike for decades for its olym/planyourvisit/camping.htm for more details. Station and several yards beyond, Dungeness Spit is magnificent views. During the off-season the campsites are obtained the world’s longest natural sand spit. Home of the Quileute tribe, La Push offers beaution a first-come, first-served basis. If planning to visit the lighthouse, check tidal charts ful views of the Pacific Ocean, a busy marina, nearby and leave plenty of daylight hours to complete the hike. coastal trails, a popular campground and a resort. STATE PARKS, REFUGES AND MORE TO EXPLORE Pack a snack or light lunch to enjoy at picnic tables Don’t miss the opportunity to watch surfers bob in •  Fort Worden State Park and Conference under the shadow of the lighthouse while enjoying the choppy waves off First Beach or take in a colorful Center — This scenic Port Townsend park features panoramic views of the spit and water. summer sunset with James Island in the background. 12 miles of hiking and biking trails that are handiVenture inside the lighthouse to view educational Watch brown pelicans search for a catch near the capped-compliant, Victorian houses used as barracks displays and to talk to a knowledgeable volunteer entrance to the Quiluete River and keep your eyes during the fort’s early years and loads of ways to enjoy about the history of the light station and its peeled for harbor seals in the cool waters. a warm summer day. surrounding waters. To learn more about things to see and do in La Push, The park features a baseball/softball field; tennis Climb the 74 steps to the top of the lighthouse to see visit www.quileutenation.org. courts; kayak, rowboat and bike rentals; two boat wonderful panoramic views of the spit and refuge, as n Cape Flattery — The short Cape Flattery ramps and 235 feet of dock/moorage. well as the Strait of Juan de Fuca and Canada. Trail features boardwalk, stone and gravel steps, The Port Townsend Marine Science Center, the Visit www.newdungenesslighthouse.com for details. plus four observation decks offering breathtaking Natural History Museum, a concession stand with A $3 per group fee is collected at the trailhead. views of the Olympic Coast National Marine Sancturestrooms, the Puget Sound Coast Artillery Museum •  Dungeness Recreation Area offers an array of ary, Tatoosh Island and Cape Flattery Lighthouse. and Point Wilson Lighthouse can be found along a family-friendly campsites. The viewing platform at the end of the trail offers beach side road. The campground is open year round. There are 66 a wonderful place to view a variety of sea birds, sea A long stretch of sandy beach on either side of the premium campsites located on a bluff above the Strait otters and sometimes whales, so be sure to have road provides easy places to look for shells, sea glass of Juan de Fuca. The camp is in a forested area children scan the sky and water for wildlife. and beach cobbles. The trail is a Makah Wilderness Area, so stay on arranged in two loops. Let children explore Battery Kinzie to learn more the trail and supervise children closely. To reserve a site and for more information, visit about the history of Fort Worden. A Makah Recreation Permit is required to hike the www.clallam.net/Parks/Dungeness.html. Children can wander through the fort, stopping to Cape Flattery Trail. •  Port Williams — Port Williams’ official name is learn more at informational signs, and enjoy a sweep- Marlyn Nelson County Park at Port Williams. Permits can be obtained at the Makah Marina, ing view of the area from the top of the fort where Washburn’s General Store, Makah Tribal Center, Children will love walking the beach to look for giant guns were once mounted for protection. Makah Mini Mart and the Makah Cultural and cobbles and shells and watching for ships to pass by. A Discover Pass is required for vehicle access to Research Center in Neah Bay. This park has a saltwater boat launch (18 feet or SPECIAL SUPPLEMENT TO PENINSULA DAILY NEWS AND SEQUIM GAZETTE



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Nature heals. I’m sure this isn’t the first time you’ve heard this, but scientists are now piling up the evidence. Scientists have found being in nature — believe it or not, even viewing pictures of nature — reduces anger, fear and stress and increases positive feelings such as gratitude, awe and peace. Exposure to nature not only makes you feel better emotionally, it also contributes to your physical wellbeing: it reduces blood pressure, heart rate, muscle tension, and the production of stress hormones. Plus, nature helps us cope with pain. Because we are genetically programmed to find trees, plants, water and other nature elements engrossing, we are absorbed by nature scenes and distracted from our pain and discomfort. These are just a few ways nature helps us heal. We are fortunate that here on the Olympic Peninsula, we live in a gateway to wilderness. However, although getting into the backcountry with your family is wonderful, you don’t have to plan a major wilderness trip to get these benefits from nature. Environmental writer Emma Marris redefines nature as “anyplace that is host to more than one species.” This can include your own backyard, a local park or even an empty lot that has been allowed to go wild. These five inexpensive family activities will give you some of the benefits of a nature immersion experience without leaving your neighborhood. 1. BIRD WATCHING: Hang a bird feeder near your home and help your children identify the visiting birds. Make a whimsical bird feeder out of an old shoe or an empty plastic bottle. For the shoe feeder, simply nail the old shoe to a tree or post with the heel at the top and fill it with bird seed. For the plastic bottle feeder, make holes in the bottle for a couple of old wooden spoons and be sure that you

angle the spoons downward so that the birdseed will drizzle onto them. Teach your children not only to identify birds by sight, but also by sound. Local libraries have bird watching kits available for check out. 2. STAR GAZING: Plan a midnight picnic in the yard to watch the stars. You can plan a picnic as often as once a week, but if a weekly event doesn’t work for you, Perseid meteor showers will peak Aug. 12 and 13. When I was a kid, sleeping on our dock and watching the stars on summer nights was one of the highlights of my summer! But not everyone enjoys sleeping outdoors, and not everyone owns a tent. Holding a midnight picnic is a great compromise. It’s novel enough that your kids will think you’re amazing, but everyone can all still sleep in their own beds when the show is over. For an added treat, you can join the free Hurricane Ridge Astronomy Program and view the stars through telescopes from the Ridge. (More information and dates can be found at www.olympictelescope.com.) 3. GROW VEGETABLES: You can make an inexpensive container garden out of used juice boxes, thrift shop colanders or baskets or a large sized kiddie pool. Growing your own vegetables will save on your family’s grocery bill and is also a great way to create your own mini eco-system to attract bees, butterflies and other insects that are fun for you and your kids to watch. Together you can learn ways to keep your plants healthy without chemical pesticides, when to harvest them so they are still at their best and plan healthy and creative recipes to gobble up your vegetables. You can also plant flowers or herbs if you want to expand your garden. Chamomile, mint and thyme make great ground covers and your child can take in the scents of nature along with the sights. 4. MOTH BAITING: On a hot summer evening, hang a

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Kristin Halberg is a transformation coach and owner of The Dream Hatchery — Guiding You Back to Wholeness and Joy. She blends the healing power of nature, science, spirituality and the expressive arts to serve women who have lost their sense of self through trauma or societal conformity. For more information, visit www.thedreamhatchery. com, www.facebook.com/DreamHatchery or phone 425343-2374.


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white bed sheet on your deck or in your yard, and shine a bright light on it for at least 30 minutes (ultraviolet is best, but regular bulbs will work). Get ready to be fascinated and maybe a little creeped out by all the night insects you attract. You can also make a moth bait made from old beer, rotting bananas, and sugar or molasses. Let this “brew” in a dark, warm place until it stinks. Then paint it on a nearby tree trunk and return after dark with a flashlight and a field guide. This idea courtesy of “A Parent’s Guide to Nature Play,” by Ken Finch. 5. WALK THE GROUNDS: Commit to taking a daily contemplative walk as a family. A contemplative walk is a walk without purpose. It’s not exercise, it’s not meant to get you somewhere; it’s simply a chance to put one foot in front of another and explore nature wherever your feet want to take you. Ideally, this is a silent walk, so you can take it the sights, sounds and smells of nature without disruption. There are no time constraints, but if you have young children, you might want to start with 5 to 10 minutes and build from there. You should set the parameters (quiet, slow) and you can offer rewards (for every quiet minute they get a minute knocked off their bedtime or get an extra minute of play) to increase the likelihood that they’ll adhere to these guidelines. I hope these five ideas give you the chance to reap the healing benefits of nature with your family without spending a fortune or leaving your neighborhood.

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located at: Chimacum Corner Farmstand, 9122 Rhody Drive PENINSULA FAMILIES TODAY  JULY 2017  11

Flying flowers: Butterfly-friendly gardens by JEANETTE STEHR-GREEN, a certified WSU Clallam County Master Gardener

Since ancient times, butterflies have held special meaning for humans. Because of their transformation from a caterpillar to a butterfly, they have become symbols of life and death, the soul, love and more. Many cultures have incorporated these mystical creatures into legends and folklore. For example, ancient Aztec Indians believed that butterflies could carry wishes to heaven, and in Ireland in the 1600s, the belief that white butterflies were the souls of dead children was widespread.

Butterflies have been likened to “flowers that fly and all but sing” and continue to charm us with their silent flight and beautiful wings. But today their existence is threatened by loss of habitat, climate change, pesticide use and pollution. A butterfly-friendly garden is one way to help protect these beautiful creatures and bring them into our lives. The life cycle of a butterfly is complex and must be considered in designing a butterfly-friendly garden. The cycle starts with the adult female depositing a fertilized egg on a carefully selected plant. A larva (or caterpillar) hatches from the egg and

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BUTTERFLY-FRIENDLY GARDENS, continued on Page 13  >>

Native plants that attract butterflies to your yard by JEANETTE STEHR-GREEN, a certified WSU Clallam County Master Gardener

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spends most of its time eating the leaves of the plant on which it hatched. As it eats, the larva grows and sheds its skin several times. When the larva finishes growing, it forms a protective casing around itself called a chrysalis. Inside the chrysalis, the larva is transformed. When the transformation is finished, an adult butterfly emerges. Because the plants on which a butterfly lays her eggs later become food for the larva, to attract adult butterflies to your garden you must provide plants the larvae like to eat (called host plants). Host plants tend to differ among butterfly species; so if you want to attract a particular type of butterfly, you need to include host plants specific to that butterfly. The caterpillars will feed on these plants, so be prepared to tolerate some chewing damage. Avoid the use of pesticides or herbicides in your garden, even Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt), because they will kill any caterpillars, not just the bad guys. Adult butterflies themselves dine on all sorts of nectarproducing flowers but are most attracted to those that are purple, bright pink, yellow, orange and red. A succession of flowers in your garden with different bloom times will ensure nectar (and the presence of butterflies) throughout the growing season. Focus plant selection on native species because they will be easiest to establish and grow. (See the information box “Native plants that attract butterflies” below.) Most butterflies are attracted to the flowers of herbs so they are also a good addition to a butterfly-friendly garden. Avoid exotic species, like the butterfly bush (scientific name: Buddleia davidii); although the names might sound appealing, they can be invasive and threaten native flora. The sun helps butterflies maintain their body temperature. In addition to locating your garden in a sunny spot, the placement of flat rocks in sunny areas will encourage butterflies to bask in the sunlight and keep themselves warm. Because butterflies must supplement their nectar-rich diets with extra salts and nutrients, they are attracted to mud puddles. The best puddles are probably natural puddles formed after a gentle rain, but you can also create puddles to meet butterfly needs. (See the story “How to make butterfly puddles” on Page 13.)

•  Arrow-leaved groundsel (Senecio triangularis) •  Black hawthorn (Crataegus douglasii) •  Blue or red elderberry (Sambucus caerulea and S. racemosa) •  Bush cinquefoil (Potentilla fruticosa) •  Chokecherry and bitter cherry (Prunus virginiana and Prunus emarginata) •  Edible or Indian thistle (Cirsium edule) •  Elegant Jacob’s ladder (Polemonium elegans) •  Fleabane (Erigeron compositus) •  Hardhack spirea (Spiraea douglasii)

•  Highbush cranberry (Viburnum edule) •  Mock orange (Philadelphus lewisii) •  Nettles (Urtica species) •  Pacific bleeding heart (Dicentra formosa) •  Pearly everlasting (Anaphalis margaritacea) •  Spreading phlox (Phlox diffusa) •  Redstem ceanothus (Ceanothus sanguineus) •  Stonecrop (Sedum species) •  Willow (Salix species) •  Yarrow (Achillea millefolium)


Do your feet smell? A butterfly’s do

>> BUTTERFLY-FRIENDLY GARDENS, continued from Page 12 

Butterflies need shelter from predators and wind. Hedges are ideal but groups of small trees and shrubs, or fences and trellises covered with vines also work well. Butterfly boxes have not been shown to attract butterflies and are more likely to provide a home to a host of other creatures including wasps, spiders and ants. Learning about local butterfly species will help you cater to their needs. “Butterflies of the North Olympic Peninsula” is a pocket guide written by local butterfly enthusiast, Kristi Murray Knowles. The guide includes delicate pen and ink drawings and is available through the North Olympic Library System, many local bookstores and online sources. Interested in bringing butterflies into your life? By offering the right food and comfortable surroundings, you will draw these flying flowers to your garden, adding a special color and movement to your landscape. Jeanette Stehr-Green has been a certified WSU Clallam County Master Gardener since 2003. Stehr-Green writes gardening articles for both the Sequim Gazette and Peninsula Daily News and participates in a monthly gardening call-in program on KONP. Stehr-Green enjoys teaching others about a variety of gardening topics (especially berries) and helps lead an educational walk through the 5th Street Community Garden in Port Angeles on the second Saturday of each month through September.

by JEANETTE STEHR-GREEN, a certified WSU Clallam County Master Gardener

How to make butterfly puddles by JEANETTE STEHR-GREEN, a certified WSU Clallam County Master Gardener

Mud puddles provide critical minerals that butterflies require. Puddles can be made using almost any type of container without drainage holes. A shallow container, such as a plastic or terracotta plant saucer or pie tin, works well. Select a spot where the container won’t be in your way, but will be easy for butterflies to see. Choose a nice sunny spot, if possible. Dig a hole deep enough to bury your container to the top of its rim. Fill the container with a combination of small rocks and soil. Use the soil from your garden, as it contains minerals butterflies seek from puddles. Next, fill your buried container with water. Do this for several days until the soil in it becomes saturated, leaving a standing puddle. Check the container often, adding water regularly so that there is always standing water. You may need to water it daily in warm weather.

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Most butterfly larvae can only eat one kind of plant, or a very small number of related plants, often referred to as host plants. The adult female has to know which plants are host plants because if she lays her eggs on a plant and it is not a host plant, her caterpillars will die. But how does an adult butterfly know if a plant is the right one? By smelling … through her feet. A butterfly’s feet have sense organs (chemoreceptors) that can sense smell. These chemoreceptors are reported to be similar to smell receptors in our noses and on our tongues. Before laying her eggs, the adult female will land on a plant and scrape a leaf with her feet. If it smells right, she will lay her eggs; if not, she will move on to another plant and try again. Although adult butterflies are attracted to the color of flowers when searching for food for themselves, they also use smell receptors on their antennae to find nectar. In fact, they can smell nectar using the knob-shaped sensors at the ends of their antennae long before they see the flower. When they land on a flower, their feet also detect the smell.

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w w w.olyga mefarm.com PENINSULA FAMILIES TODAY  JULY 2017  13

First Step Family Support Center offers outdoor play, crafts, healthy snacks Center with her two children, now 2 and 3 years old, on a weekly basis for almost three years. The Port Angeles Drop-In Center and Kaleidoscope “We are always welcomed and offered a healthy snack. Play and Learn at First Step Family Support Center My kids are treated with respect, and the staff is genuwelcome all families with children newborn to 5 years old inely interested in the concerns I have about my family.” (and their siblings) to come play this summer. “The Drop-In Center isn’t just for children,” said With ample space to play indoors and out, kids love Nita Lynn, longtime executive director of the private to see what is new at First Step, located at 325 E. 6th St. nonprofit. in Port Angeles. “Parents and caregivers can attend free cooking and Almost every child can find a fun and engaging gardening classes, make friends with other families and activity, and many try something that they have never find connections to resources at First Step and in the tried before. community that can make their lives better. This summer, the Port Angeles Drop-In Center at First “It is our intention that people who are isolated or Step is open Mondays through Thursdays from 1 p.m. stressed have a place where they and their children feel until 4 p.m. welcome.” The free clothing and equipment closet is open during At the Drop-In Center, the goal is for all parents and Drop-In hours, as well as the indoor and outdoor play caregivers of young children to be able to access the areas and the tumble room, providing access to computer, things they need, such as infant and children’s clothing, telephone and fax machine, emergency diapers, and a strollers and highchairs and books. healthy snack. Families in crisis can pick up a bundle of diapers to Also offered at the Port Angeles Drop-In Center are help them keep their children’s bottoms clean and dry cooking classes by reservation every Monday from 1 p.m. once a week. to 3 p.m. Family members can use a phone, fax and computer to Craft Club is open to the public each Wednesday from conduct business that is vital to the health and well1 p.m. to 3 p.m. being of their children. The Garden Club is offered to the public from 2 p.m. to Morning activities are also available for children and 4 p.m. each Thursday. their caregivers through the Kaleidoscope Play and “It feels like I am coming home when I bring my kids Learn series at First Step. to the Drop-In,” Autumn Kemmer said. Kaleidoscope sessions are offered at First Step each She has been coming to the Port Angeles Drop-In Wednesday from 10 a.m. to noon through Aug. 16, and at by AMBER HOSKEN OF FIRST STEP FAMILY SUPPORT CENTER

the Port Angeles Library each Friday from 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. through Aug. 18. Activities are for children and their caregivers, are ageappropriate, and are focused on child development and parent-child relationships. Follow the Kaleidoscope Play and Learn with First Step Facebook page for updates to the year-round play group information. All sessions of Kaleidoscope Play and Learn and all activities at the Port Angeles Drop-In Center are free and open to everyone caring for small children. For more information, phone 360-457-8355. First Step Family Support Center is a United Way agency, and an equal opportunity employer and provider.




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Family Movie Series continues to entertain at Sequim Library offered for family entertainment. Milo finds out how much he needs his mom when she’s As part of the North Olympic Library System’s annual taken by Martians who plan to steal her mom-ness and Summer Reading Program, the Sequim Library, 630 N. use her brain to instruct Martian robots about raising Sequim Ave., will offer a free Family Movie Series children. Fridays at 2 p.m. through Aug. 18. On Mars, the female babies are nursed by robots while The series will provide out-of-the-sun family enterthe male babies are dumped in the junkyard under the tainment, snacks and fun movie trivia at an affordable command of Supervisor. price — free! The Summer Movie Series will conclude on Friday, “Because of Winn-Dixie,” will continue the summer Aug. 18, with a screening of “Shaun the Sheep Movie.” movie series on July 28. Shaun the sheep is tired of doing the same work at the This family film is adapted from the Newbery Honor farm every day. He decides to take a day off but he needs award-winning book of the same name written by wellto make sure the farmer doesn’t know. known author Kate DiCamillo. A mix-up with the farmer, a caravan and a very steep The film depicts a 10-year-old girl, abandoned by her hill lead them all to the big city and it’s up to Shaun mother when she was three, who moves to a small town and the flock to return everyone safely to the green in Florida with her father, a preacher. grass of home. This PG-rated film is loaded with fun While there, she adopts a stray dog whom she names and excitement. after the local supermarket where he was found. The theme for the 2017 Summer Reading Program is With her goofy pooch by her side, she meets an eclectic Build a Better World. group of townspeople and rekindles an almost lost This summertime celebration, which encourages relationship with her father. children to keep reading during the summer break from On Aug. 4, take your family to see “Over the Hedge,” school, features a reading challenge and a multitude of an animated PG-rated film that tells the story of a events for all ages. raccoon who steals a bear's winter stash of food. Research shows that children who do not read during When the bear threatens retaliation, the raccoon fools the summer experience “summer slide” and may lose up a mismatched family of forest creatures into stealing food to a month of the instructional knowledge they gained from humans to repay the bear and save himself. during the previous school year. Continuing on Aug. 11, “Mars Needs Moms” will be Library summer reading programs have been shown to by PENINSULA DAILY NEWS

help alleviate the “summer slide” by providing access to books, enrichment activities, and encouraging young people to keep reading. The Summer Reading Program runs through Saturday, Aug. 19. The Summer Reading Program is supported by the Friends of the Library at all four North Olympic Library System libraries. For more information about the Summer Reading Program and other events for young people, visit www. nols.org, phone 360-683-1161 or email youth@nols.org.


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Special Sections - Peninsula Families Today July 2017  


Special Sections - Peninsula Families Today July 2017