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kalich & sons CONSTRUCTION Montesano,Washington

kalichandsons.com

360.589.4177

Creating details in Grays Harbor and Thurston counties.


fall 2017

contents

FEATURES

26

THE CHANCE OF A LIFETIME

38

A LOVE OF NATURE

Family and faith guide Ericka Corban’s career after “The Voice”

TOP Patrick Duffy on the way to Mount Olympus. Photo by Andew Veith BOTTOM Ericka Corban, singer and songwriter. Photo by Mattaniah Corban COVER A perfect shot of the Milky Way. Photo by Patrick Duffy

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Fall 2017 | WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE

Photo essay by Stuart May

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MOUNT OLYMPUS

Two adventurous friends spend five days climbing and descending the mountain.

COVER


Our work is not about houses... ...it’s about people.

Multi-year winner!

Serving all of Grays Harbor County Residential - Commercial - Land

Windermere Real Estate

101 South Broadway • Aberdeen • 360-533-6464 837 Point Brown Ave NW • Ocean Shores • 360-289-3373 www.windermeregraysharbor.com


RICAL HISTO PICS! BEACH 21 P G.

fall 2017

contents IN THIS ISSUE 12

FOOD The Depot Restaurant

42

EVENTS Our favorites

17

21

12

PEOPLE In the Pink: Aberdeen’s Bloom Team

48

HISTORY

50

WHO & WHY Douglas Orr

LAST SHOT

Back When the Beach was in Black and White

TOP The original Westport sign BOTTOM The day’s specials at The Depot Restaurant, written on a mirror.

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Fall 2017 | WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE

IN EVERY ISSUE 10 From the Editor 47 Advertisers Directory


The longest-lasting sedan in its class

Most Awarded Small SUV

Your Subaru Dealer for 33 Years

1-360-943-2120 2300 Carriage Loop SW • Olympia • Mon-Sat 8 to 7 ~ Sun 11 to 6 • www.HansonMotors.com


YOUR YOUR TAof ST STE E the PACI CIFFIC NOR ORTH THW WEST • Oysters • Shrimp • Salmon • Halibut

360-532-4000 | editor@washingtoncoastmagazine.com

• Clams • Tuna

• Crab • and More!

Publisher

Stan Woody

Editor

Doug Barker

Associate Editor

Kat Bryant

Editorial Contributors

Call ahead for fresh fish selection! 1-800-572-3252 or 360-268-0077 www.bradysoysters.com w OP O OPEN EN DAILY 9am - 6pm

West of the Elk River Bridge HWY 105 WESTPORT

Mark Your Calendars NOW! Toast the Harbor Food F ood & Wine Wine Festival Festival

Kat Bryant Patrick Duffy David Haerle Dan Hammock Douglas Orr Andrew Veith

Photographers Kat Bryant Mattaniah Corban Crooked Stream Photography Patrick Duffy Tyler Golden | NBC Jones Photo Historical Collection | Anderson & Middleton Co. Stuart May Damian Mulinix Andrew Veith Editorial Assistant

Karen Barkstrom

Magazine Kristina Case, Simply Graphic Graphic Designer

Saturday, Nov. 4th 1-8pm

Ad Graphic Designers

Constance Ellis Emily Evans

Quinault Beach Resort & Casino

Circulation

Kris Cearley

Subscriptions

Addy Moreno

Distribution

Leslie Bebich

Ocean Shores,, WA

featuring

Ericka Corban n

Contact information Advertising inquiries, subscriptions & change of address: 360-532-4000. Back issues $8 plus shipping and handling.

Sponsored by the Aberdeen Lions ns Club

Beautiful autiful d destinations estinationss aare re jjust ust a ccall all aaway... way... Vacation specials to all corners of the world.

Washington Coast Magazine is published by The Daily World, a division of Sound Publishing and may not be reproduced without express written permission, all rights reserved. No liability is assumed by Washington Coast Magazine, The Daily World or Sound Publishing regarding any content in this publication. A subscription to Washington Coast Magazine is $14 annually. Single copies are available at select locations throughout À>ÞÃ>ÀLœÀ>˜`*>VˆwVVœÕ˜ÌˆiðœÀ`iÌ>ˆÃ]ÛˆÃˆÌ www.washingtoncoastmagazine.com

Where Your s! 108 E. First | Aberdeen Journey Begin 8

Fall 2017 | WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE

© 2017 by The Daily World 315 S. Michigan St. Aberdeen, WA 98520


Historic Billy’s Bar & Grill is open 7 days a week for breakfast, lunch, & dinner. • Full Service Menu

• Homemade Soups • Fresh Garden Salads • Famous Billy’s Brick Burgers on a Torta Bun • Large Appetizer List

• Featuring Breakwater’s Hand-breaded Fish & Chips, Halibut, & Calamari • Large rotating selection n of of Pacific Northwest draft beers beers on tap.Full service bar.

322 E. Heron St. • Aberdeen 360-533-7144 SAME OWNERS SINCE 1981

Locally Owned FRESH SEAFOOD MARKET! Our fresh seafood market includes a variety of fresh fish arriving daily. We also carry Johnson’s Smoked products, a variety of locally canned seafood products, and T-shirts.

CHOWDER HOUSE SELECTIONS • Hand-breaded Fish & Chips, Prawns & Halibut • Fresh Salads ~ Shrimp, Crab, & Seabreeze • Oven-broiled Salmon, Halibut, & Cod • Grilled Crab & Cheese Sandwich m Chowder • Homemade Clam

Fast, Friendly Service!

We serve bottled beer, beer on tap and wine by the glass. Riverside seating on our large outdoor deck Open 7 days a week

306 South F St. | Aberdeen | 360-532-5693


Photos from a little bit of everything

This

issue of Washington Coast Magazine features the first cover that doesn’t have water on it. Correction: liquid water. The snow near the base of Mount Olympus on the Olympic Peninsula, is precipitation that blew in off the Pacific Ocean, but now we’re nit-picking. The compelling story of the trek up Mount Olympus by Patrick Duffy and Andrew Veith – and their snowboard trip down – presents a great example of the diversity of natural environments in Western Washington. If you don’t read anything else in this issue, I recommend you read that. And their photos are spectacular. And don’t miss the photos of Stuart May, a professional photographer based in Ocean Shores. He’s taken photos all over the world and the ones featured in this edition represent just a tiny handful. In this case, my recommendation is to go to his website or his gallery in Ocean Shores, Fusions Art Gallery. As incredible as those images are, some of my favorite photos in the magazine are from the Jones Photo Historical Collection, as the headline for that piece says: back when the beach was in black and white. I hope you enjoy this edition.

Doug Barker, Editor

Stay connected with us!! VISIT OUR WEBSITE www.WashingtonCoastMagazine.com Click it to read our past articles and learn about upcoming events.

We invite you to check us out œ˜>ViLœœŽ°/iÕÃ>LœÕÌޜÕÀ experiences at the coast and feel free to suggest stories about your favorite spots.

OUR FALL COVER!

After climbing for 12 straight hours, nothing sounded better than crawling into my tent and going to bed. But just as I was about to succumb to sleep, I happened to glance upwards at one of the brightest night skies I had ever seen. Cocooned in my sleeping bag, I laid there awestruck — shooting stars streaked across the sky, planets beamed energy from light years away, constellations were visible like pages out of a textbook, and far off satellites blinked ever so slightly in the distance. All of a sudden, sleep was the last thing I wanted. I knew I had to capture this moment. I pulled myself out of my tent and grabbed my tripod. I spent the next two hours racing the self timer on my camera — running around like a wild man, I would set up the camera, press the shutter, sprint out next to my tent, stand as still as possible, check the results … and repeat. For the life of me, I could not quite get the lighting of the tent right. With a 20-second exposure, any small light in the tent blew it up like a jacko-lantern. In a last ditch effort, I grabbed a tube sock and placed it over the headlamp in my tent. The sock dimmed it just enough and provided the perfect amount of tent glow, a scene MacGyver himself would have been proud of. Ø>««i`̅iw˜>ŜÌ>˜`V…iVŽi`̅i results. Boom! Foreground lit, tent clear, and the sky was about as perfect as can be. It was as if the guts of the cosmos had exploded in front of my eyes. The Milky Way, painted perfectly in line with the middle peak of Mount Olympus, shone LÀˆ}…̏Þ>Ã>Li>Vœ˜̜œÕÀw˜>œLiV̈Ûi° — Patrick Duffy

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Fall 2017 | WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE

About that Milky Way shot


QUALITY COUNTS SO COUNT ON US!

2012

2017

2015

For the third time, Capital Medical’s Joint & Spine Center has been awarded the Joint Commission Gold Seal of Approval for hip, knee and spine surgery.

Learn more about Award-Winning Knee, Hip and Spine Surgery capitalmedical.com

Capital Medical Center is partly owned by some of the physicians who serve our patients.

©2017 BCI


gg FOOD The Depot’s proprietors are Chef Michael Lalewicz and his wife, Nancy Gorshe, who manages business operations.

The Depot I Restaurant

nside a long-defunct train station near the southernmost tip of the Washington Coast, discerning travelers can enjoy a sumptuous meal worthy of a rail baron.

The proprietors came for vacation and stayed for }œœ`]LÀˆ˜}ˆ˜}w˜i dining to the beach

S T O RY BY K A T B RY A N T PHOTOS BY DAMIAN MULINIX

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Fall 2017 | WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE

Michael Lalewicz and his wife, Nancy Gorshe, are the proprietors of The Depot Restaurant in Seaview, on the Long Beach Peninsula. Michael is the executive chef, creating culinary delights in his tiny but well-appointed kitchen; Nancy is the manager, handling the front of the house and general business operations. It was like that long before they launched their restaurant. Nancy tells the story of their first two dates nearly 30 years ago: First, he invited her to a beautiful dinner at his home, complete with cloth napkins. Later, she made stir-fry for him at her place — and he showed her how to make it better.

“He’s been cooking for us ever since!” she laughs. In 1996, they bought a summer beach house in Surfside, Wash. A few years later, that became their full-time home. “What I fell in love with was that we had three waterways, and I’m a water nut,” says Nancy. “So I just love that we have the rush of the ocean, the calm of (Willapa) Bay…” “…and the craziness of the Columbia River,” Michael finishes with a smile.

The Depot Restaurant Opens every day at 5 p.m. Reservations recommended 1208 38th Place, Seaview WA 98644, 360-642-7880 www.depotrestaurantdining.com


It’s a warm, intimate place, with only about a dozen tables inside, plus bar seating. At the rear of the house is the coveted Chef’s Table. There’s no better way to experience a meal at this restaurant. Michael served for some time as innkeeper and executive chef of the renowned Shelburne Inn in Seaview before they decided to try running a place of their own. “We knew we wanted to bring Portland and Seattle food to the beach, yet in a casual setting so you can walk in off the beach and relax,” says Nancy. Everything came together in 2003 when Michael walked into the historic train station for a bite to eat. After decades as a tavern under a long succession of owners, the 1889 structure had been turned into a bistro. Michael says it was nice, though “it was still in really bad shape. There was a lot of rot and not much holding this place up.” In the course of talking with the young couple who owned it, he discovered they were ready to get out and move back to Portland. “We had them over for dinner the next night and made a deal the next morning, and we were in here within a week,” says

Michael. They did a quick cleanup to get started, then a major renovation after the first year to redesign the space and upgrade their equipment. It’s a warm, intimate place, with only about a dozen tables inside, plus bar seating. The walls are adorned with images and memorabilia from the property’s early days as a train station, along with some European bistro-style elements. At the rear of the house is the coveted Chef’s Table. Only a 4-foot wall separates it from the kitchen, allowing patrons to observe the food preparation and chat with the chef. There’s no better way to experience a meal at this restaurant. As to the couple’s plans for the future — well, they laugh, that depends on

how long Michael can keep working 60 to 70 hours per week on his feet. He turned 60 this year. Since they have no children, they hope to help some of their employees buy them out someday. After that? It looks like their longtime beach house may become their retirement villa. They have no plans to leave the area they’ve come to love so much. Says Michael: “We are most happily trapped here.”

ABOVE: The Depot offers a full bar and many fine wines. BELOW LEFT-RIGHT: Manager Nancy Gorshe chats with childhood friend Mary Murray, of Seattle, who was visiting with a pair of friends from Colorado. The walls are lined with memorabilia from the structure’s history as a rail station from the 1880s through 1930.

WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE | Fall 2017

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THE FOOD Chef Michael Lalewicz is a graduate of the Western Culinary Institute in Portland, Oregon. He and his wife have traveled all over North America and Europe in his quest for new tastes and ideas. “I always have some kind of Asian ˆ˜yĂ•i˜Viœ˜ĂŒÂ…i“iÂ˜Ă•]Â?Ă•ĂƒĂŒLiV>Ă•Ăƒi want to eat it and can’t get it anywhere (on Long Beach),â€? he says. “But mostly, it’s French and Italian. European food is kind of my base. And we go to Mexico a lot, so there’s always some of that in there as well.â€? And he has plenty of fresh materials to work with. The area’s diverse environment provides a wide variety of foods, from oysters to cranberries to wild game to mushrooms. He even uses raspberries plucked from the bush outside the restaurant’s back door.

A recent meal at The Depot was a OCTXGNQWUOGNCPIGQHEQNQTĆƒCXQT and texture — cooked perfectly and presented beautifully. Here’s a taste: Pictured top to bottom, left to right. CHEF’S TABLE TREAT Chunk of smoky bleu cheese drizzled with balsamic reduction; served with fresh crusty bread APPETIZERS Artichoke frito — Fried artichoke owerets served with traditional Spanish almond Romesco sauce with piquillo peppers; served with olive mix

house vinaigrette topped with candied walnuts, sliced pears and crumbled bleu cheese. Gazpacho Seville — Traditional Andalusian-style cold soup with plum tomatoes, cucumbers, sweet bell peppers, smoked paprika and garlic; topped with roasted sweet-corn salsa

Peruvian mango sea scallops — Three giant pan-seared wild Atlantic sea scallops on a spicy mango salsa; garnished with parsley oil and pickled red onions

ENTREE Catch of the Day — Pan-seared Chinook salmon on Yukon gold smashed potatoes; topped with a Chanterelle mushroom cream

Thai calamari — Fried wild, sustainable calamari tossed with Thai peanut cilantro sauce on fresh organic mixed greens; topped with crispy won-tons

DESSERTS Chocolate-espresso pot du crème, garnished with freshly whipped cream and a mint leaf

SOUP & SALAD Depot House Greens — Organic mixed greens tossed in

Raspberry and mango sorbets, served with a thick sugar-crusted shortbread cookie

Fresh materials provide inspiration for many of Michael’s dishes, like the raspberries from the bush just outside the restaurant’s back door.


FOOD  ff

Chef Michael Lalewicz shows his flair in the Depot’s intimate kitchen.

FINDING COMMON GROUND

“In Florence, there’s this incredible market — it’s massive. And there’s this one deli counter that just goes on and on forever. … I walk up to the counter, and it’s all very classy, you know — everything is impeccable and beautiful. Now, this guy doesn’t speak English, and I speak almost no Italian; all I know is food Italian. So he’d point to something and I say no, and he’d point to something else and I’d say no. After him showing me ‘spec’ prosciutto and moving up to prosciutto di Parma, I’d always pick the best thing. So he knew after a little bit: This guy knows what he’s doing. So he stops in the middle of it, and he opens up a bottle of Prosecco, and we’re both sipping Prosecco and I’m tasting everything. And I made this incredible spread (for my family that evening with what I bought there). I think probably out of all the restaurants we’ve ever eaten in, that was the most fun thing for me.”

WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE | Fall 2017

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Elma

gg FOOD

Gateway to Grays Harbor Since 1888

Winter Wine Festival JANUARY 20, 2018

The Depot Restaurant is housed in a restored 1889 structure that originally served as a rail station.

Join us for these great events in 2017! October 31 November 11 November 17-19 December Jan 20, 2018

• Elma’s Downtown Trick or Treat • Elma’s Veterans’ Day Celebration & Parade • Elma’s Holiday Bazaar Weekend • Santa photos with kids & pets • Winter Wine Festival

Elma Chamber of Commerce

For more information on these and other great events: www.elmachamber.org • (360) 482-3055 • 222 W. Main

Northwest Carriage Museum

NEARBY ATTRACTIONS Willapa Bay National Wildlife Refuge

3888 U.S. 101 Ilwaco WA 98624 360-484-3482 www.fws.gov/refuge/willapa

Cape Disappointment State Park

(including North Head Lighthouse and Lewis & Clark Interpretive Center) 244 Robert Gray Drive Ilwaco WA 98624 360-642-3078 parks.state.wa.us/486/Cape-Disappointment

Over 50 Magnificently restored

horse-drawn carriages circa 1850-1910

Fun, interactive exhibits for all ages! Group and school tours available Open Daily 10 - 4 PM 314 Alder St. (at Hwy 101 & St.Rt.6) • Raymond, WA (360) 942-4150

nwcarriagemuseum.org

3DLGIRUZLWK3DFL¿F&RXQW\/RGJLQJ7D[GROODUV

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Fall 2017 | WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE

Visit the North Head Lighthouse at Cape Disappointment State park before dining at The Depot Restaurant.


PEOPLE  ff

IN THE PINK: Aberdeen’s Bloom Team brightens the streets S T O R Y A N D P H O T OS B Y KA T B R YA NT

I

n 2013, when Aberdeen officials were looking for ways to revitalize Grays Harbor’s centerpoint, longtime friends Bette Worth and Bobbi McCracken answered the call. “I was unhappy with what had been going on in Aberdeen … the morale, the community spirit,” says Worth. “And I thought: I can’t bad-mouth this community if I haven’t made an effort to change things. And that’s kind of how Bobbi felt as well.” They attended some meetings and got fired up. “We were drawn in because we could see there were things happening,” says McCracken. “We were bound not to let this be one more thing where they can say: ‘See? It never happens. They just talk about it.’” They weren’t sure specifically what they could do to help until they got wind of a Chamber of Commercesponsored flower program in Shelton and did some research. “We got all the details, and we said, ‘This is gonna work,”’ says McCracken. Aberdeen had some small hanging baskets at the time, but the city Parks Department had a limited budget for them. So Worth and McCracken formed the Aberdeen Beautification Committee and got to work sending donation request letters to about 200 people and businesses. They raised more than $15,000 that first year, including sponsorships from the city and the Aberdeen Lions Club. The next step was procuring equipment,

materials and flowers. That first year, the weather and wind from passing traffic bombarded the blooms. More resilient plants were needed for the hanging baskets, and Terry Stevenson at Wynoochee Windmill Farm in Montesano came up with the solution: Proven Winters pink vistas. ABOVE: Bette Worth and Bobbi McCracken “We’ve had a few people comment: Why with their beautiful don’t you use different pink flowers in downtown Aberdeen. color flowers?” says McCracken. “But other colors are not as hardy. So we are going to be pink!” During the off-season, some of the baskets and pots are filled with evergreen boughs with red ribbons for the winter, followed by tulips and daffodils in spring. The baskets then turn pink on Mother’s Day weekend and stay that way generally through Labor Day. The Beautification Committee operates in partnership with the city Parks Department. During the season, city employees water all of the plants daily and fertilize them weekly. The committee’s Bloom Team – consisting of 30 regular volunteers plus anyone else who shows up to help — hits the streets twice a month to weed the pots and sidewalks, deadhead the flowers, prune the trees and pick up trash. They’ve received help along the way

+

Aberdeen Beautification Committee by the numbers

2017 SPENDING: $25,000 to $30,000 COMMITTEE MEMBERS: 2 BLOOM TEAM VOLUNTEERS: 30 HANGING BASKETS: 150 GROUND POTS: 103

PLANTS PLACED THIS YEAR:

About 3,000

WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE | Fall 2017

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PEOPLE  ff

BETTE & BOBBI’S

Top 10 gardening tips 1. Seek advice from local nurseries about plants that are indigenous to your area. 2. Select plants according to where they are going to be planted regarding their exposure to sun. 3. Water in the morning to prevent development of mold or fungus. 4. Fertilize weekly with good-quality fertilizer. 5. Monitor plants for development of diseases and treat appropriately. 6. Deadhead plants and pull weeds as necessary to enhance growth. 7. Change soil in pots every few years due to leaching of minerals.

from the Comcast Cares program, the Rotary Club, local Boy Scouts and other service groups. After starting with 60 hanging baskets, the project has expanded to include 150. That’s beyond the capacity of Stevenson’s greenhouses (which also supply flowers for baskets in Hoquiam and Montesano); so the committee procures additional pink vistas from Fessler Nursery in Woodburn, Ore. Other plants for the 103 ground pots come mostly from Stevenson (“We pretty much wipe her out,” says McCracken), plus some from Dennis Co. and Marshall’s Garden & Pet. Another factor that’s helped the blooms thrive is the soil treatment, called Technigro. “Everybody asks us about that fertilizer. It’s like gold,” says McCracken. Because it’s available only in bulk, it’s

WANT TO HELP?

not sold in Harborarea stores for individual gardeners. So that, too, must be purchased outside the area. “We’d love to buy it locally, but we can’t get it,” says Worth.

ABOVE: Hardy plants, regular watering, fertilizer that’s “like gold” and lots of TLC result in flower baskets overflowing with color. RIGHT: Bobbi McCracken, left, deadheads flowers with Bloom Team member Becky Carossino.

8. Think about placement of plants in pots to guarantee best display. Place taller plants in the center and move outward, ending with plants that trail over the sides along the edges. 9. Don’t crowd the pots. 10. There are no wrong color combos ՘iÃÃޜÕ…>Ûi>ëiVˆwV scheme; just enjoy the variety.

Talking with this dynamic twoperson committee is an experience in itself. While they never talk over each other, they often finish each other’s sentences in seamless, energetic conversation. They are clearly passionate about making a difference – and following through. “We have the same drive, and goals, and competitive nature,” says McCracken. “We do not like to lose.”

FUNDS: Tax-deductible donations are accepted anytime through the Aberdeen Parks Department.

TIME: Volunteers are welcome to check in at City Hall at 8 a.m. on the second and fourth Tuesdays of the month, generally between Mother’s Day and Labor Day.

MORE INFO: Li>ṎwV>̈œ˜° aberdeenwa.gov QUESTIONS: Parks Director Stacie Barnum, 360-537-3248 or sbarnum@aberdeenwa.gov.

WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE | Fall 2017

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Fall 2017 | WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE

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Back When the Beach Was in Black and White The images on these pages come from the Jones Photo Historical Collection, photos that were taken or collected by four generations of the Jones family, professional photographers that recorded life in the Grays Harbor and Willapa Harbor areas from about 1913 to the early 2000s. The collection is now owned and preserved by the Middleton family, which has been involved in the timber business and other ventures on Grays Harbor since the late 1800s.

TOP: This pre-Google Maps sign stood just outside the Pacific Beach Hotel in the 1920s. BOTTOM: Clam diggers at Gra yland, circa 1940.

The Middletons have made a substantial investment in preserving the area’s history, by restoring and cataloging the images from the Jones collection. PHOTOS COURTESY OF JONES HISTORICAL PHOTO COLLECTION/AND ERSON & MID D LETON CO.

WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE | Fall 2017

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Winners of the Westp ort fishing derby won a ne w Evinrude, and a gun!

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT: The fishing fleet at Westport, circa 1940. When you won the fishing derby at Westport in 1953, you got a new Evinrude and a gun. Gene’s Place in Tokeland was a onepump service station, with cabins to rent, circa 1945. The Coast Guard Life Boat Station, circa 1953. Five young women and a girl in bathing suits of the day, circa 1912, near the Moclips Hotel north of Grays Harbor.

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Fall 2017 | WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE


In August 1962, Robert and Ethel Kennedy and several of their children visited Westport to go salmon fishing. Kennedy was the U.S. attorney general at the time. They spent one night in Westport, got plenty of fish and left the next morning to meet Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas on the Olympic Peninsula.

CLOCKWISE FROM CENTER LEFT: In 1902, people did not wear flip-flops and tank tops to the beach. Dignitaries of the day view construction of the South Jetty for Grays Harbor in September 1937. Automobiles and roadside lodging meant the ocean was becoming a lot more accessible to middle-class families in the first half of the last century. This motor village at Pacific Beach had 24 units, each with a garage, circa 1945.

WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE | Fall 2017

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Taholah, circa 1920, at the mouth of the Quinault River. Note the canoes along the beach and netss sstretched out on poles. st

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP: The Pacific Beach Post Office and Christian’s Store, circa 1933. A salmon derby competition in Westport in 1954. In the background is a small sign for Deep Sea Charters, still in operation today.

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Fall 2017 | WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE

The Pacific Beach Hotel dates back to about 1902. During World War II it was purchased by the U.S. Navy and converted to a military installation. Today, it is a resort that is available to military families. In 1898, the lighthouse complex was nearing completion. The foghorn was powered by steam.


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WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE | Fall 2017

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the

Chance S T OR Y B Y DA N H A MMOC K

Family, faith lift Corban’s career after ‘The Voice’

S

inger/songwriter Ericka Corban has developed a loyal following from years of performing around Grays Harbor, but it’s fair to say now that she’s best known for her appearance on NBC’s “The Voice” singing competition. The Aberdeen artist was one of about 90 contestants who got to perform before — or rather behind — the show’s panel of coaches. That’s no small feat, considering more than 40,000 hopefuls were vying for those spots. Her husband, Mattaniah, looked after their four young children as she spent several weeks in Los Angeles, preparing for her moment in the spotlight. At the time, she saw the

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audition as her last big chance to break into the national scene. When the time came last March, she confidently took the stage in front of a television audience of millions. She sang an old folk standard the show’s producers had picked for her, and she gave it her all. The celebrity judges sit facing the studio audience during each audition. If any of them turns around to look at a performer, it means that person has been picked to move on in the competition. As Ericka’s song wound down and none of the celebrity judges turned to face her, it became clear she would not be advancing. While disappointed she was not selected, Ericka has no intention of giving up on a career in music. If

Fall 2017 | WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE

anything, the experience moved her to redefine her goals as an artist in some ways. She’s currently working on an album of original material, her first in five years. She has the full support of her family, which she and Mattaniah started soon after meeting. “We met at Grays Harbor College. We were both in the music program there, in the 2006-07 school year,” she said. “We planned our wedding date later that week.” The couple has performed locally as a duo, calling themselves Butler and the Maid, but they recently changed the name of their act to Halley and Jupiter ABOVE: Photo of Ericka taken by her husband, Mattaniah Corban


to reflect “a bit of a shift of content and style,” said Ericka. “This will be a little more mainstream.” Their basement houses a small recording studio, “basically a computer and a really good microphone,” one of two locations Ericka is using to work on her new solo album. As with most of her music, pigeonholing it into a single musical category is challenging. “I guess in terms of genre, I would call it singer/songwriter,” she said. “It’s got some jazz influences, it’s got some folk influences and adult contemporary influences.” She added these are all her original compositions — “all songs that have come out of life experience and a reflection of my journey over the last seven years.” She normally plays fairly intimate settings, often just her with her guitar or piano. Her new project will feature a full band, with a number of area musicians providing bass and cello, Mattaniah likely adding some lead guitar, and of course Ericka’s acoustic guitar, piano and unique voice. A portion of the album will be recorded in Seattle, where the drummer for the project lives. He has a great deal of experience recording and touring as part of nationally known Seattle artist

Brandi Carlile’s band. The new album was funded by a very well-received Kickstarter campaign. The goal was set at $10,000, and when it was over, she had raised more than $15,000. She offered premiums for contributions, everything from a “high five” for $1, to T-shirts and hoodies, to signed posters and CDs. Two people pledged $2,000 or more to score an executive producer credit on the album, along with all the other swag. All of those supporters are understandably eager for the new album, but, as Ericka said, “Everything goes slower than you would hope or anticipate.” As of mid-July she was deep in rehearsals, teasing a couple of snippets of new songs on her Facebook page, and she expected to start recording tracks in early August. She’s pitched 13 songs for the album and said the finished product will include at least 10 of them. Shortly after Ericka’s turn on “The Voice,” she said she was going to focus more on writing songs and less on performing. Touring is difficult for a family with four young children in the mix, but the Corbans home-school all of their children. “I was home-schooled, and my mom was a leader in the

HER MUSIC

I guess in terms of genre, I would call it singer/songwriter. It’s got some jazz influences, it’s got some folk influences and adult contemporary influences....all songs that have come out of life experience and a reflection of my journey over the last seven years.

singing on stage RIGHT: Among only 90 of the 40,000 hopefuls who auditioned for “The Voice” this season, Corban sang a rendition of the classic folk staple “Wade in the Water” for celebrity coaches Gwen Stefani, Blake Shelton, Adam Levine and Alicia Keys for her blind audition, but none of the coaches selected her for their teams, eliminating her from the competition. More than 12 million people around the world tuned in to this episode of the popular NBC show. Photo by Tyler Golden/NBC

WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE | Fall 2017

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the independent film “Murder on Cape Cod.” The film, based on the true story of the murder of fashion writer Christa Worthington, has made some waves at film festivals in Boston and elsewhere, and it has been nominated for several IndieFest awards. “We are also looking at selling songs to other artists,” said Ericka. “We write more than we can record, and in a lot of different genres and styles.”

her family ABOVE: The Corban family, from left: Mordecai, age 7; Mattaniah holding Titus, age 4; Ericka holding Levi, age 2; and Keziah, age 9. Photo by Crooked Stream Photography

home-schooling movement in Texas in the early ’80s,” said Mattaniah. “We also wanted the flexibility for touring,” Ericka added.

For the new album, “we hope to tour, but the issue is money,” she said. “We are saving up to buy an RV so we can take the whole family with us, and at this point we are our own booking agent. If we can pull everything together logistically and financially, the goal is to hit the road next summer.” For the most part, she still plans to center her career in Aberdeen, where the local music scene has played a major role in her success. Most of the area’s musicians have families and “real” jobs, but a movement for more live music in downtown Aberdeen is gaining steam, mostly through the energy of local musician Wil Russoul, who is nurturing a solid foundation for INFO

FOLLOW ERICKA’S JOURNEY erickacorban erickacorban.com

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local artists. “I’ve had a lot of support. Wil has been great,” said Ericka. “There are a lot of older artists here with families who have held on to their passion for music.” She opened for Air Supply at the D&R Theatre in Aberdeen in early April. In July, she played venues on the coast at Ocean Shores and Seabrook — and opened an Olympia show for Rodney Crowell, a Grammy-winning singer/ songwriter from Nashville. “It was so cool,” said Ericka. “A friend of mine from ‘The Voice’ is his niece, and she texted me and said ‘You’re opening for my uncle, that’s so cool!’ He came by before the show and said his niece had told him to make sure he said hello, so we got to hang out and visit with him.” Ericka said while she played her set, Crowell and his band came out to watch her perform. “That’s kind of unheard of,” he said. “Most acts wait in the green room and just wait their turn. He came out and watched, and afterward gave me some good tips about my set. It was nice to get some tips from a seasoned performer like that.” Ericka also wants to get her music into film, and she’s already had some success on that front. Two of her songs are featured on the soundtrack to

Fall 2017 | WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE

Ericka has another project in the works: a children’s book titled “Tippy the Owl.” The story already has a home on YouTube, and as of mid-July it was set to be published and printed. “Soon it will be available in physical form,” she said. In the YouTube video, Tippy is voiced by the Corbans’ young son Titus. Faith is another core element of the Corban family’s life. Ericka grew up in Elma in a family that wasn’t really churchgoing, but she developed an interest after attending a program in fourth grade. “I started asking my mom lots of questions about God, so she started taking all of us kids to church,” she said. “My dad didn’t initially go with us, but one day he had a revelation from the Lord and quickly became the spiritual leader of the family. We felt closer as a family at that point.” Life has become fairly hectic, but Ericka takes it all in stride, trusting in her faith, her family and her unique talent to see her through. “I’m just going to take it one step at a time and see how it unfolds,” she said. “I have goals and a direction, but I’m not sure where it will lead to.

“Ultimately, I have to trust that God will be there to open the right doors and close the wrong ones.”


Two adventurers, three distinct ecosystems and a fast ride down


“What’s on your back?” We answer the familiar question just as we have so many times before, whether it was on Rainier, Hood, or Baker: It’s a split board, a snowboard that breaks in half, so we can ski up mountains and snowboard down them. “You boys have lost your minds, there’s no snow out here … is there?” “Yup, there sure is! You just have to go a long ways to find it.”

STORY, PHOTOS AND ADVENTURE BY PATRICK DUFFY Y AND ANDREW VEITH

And a long way it was. It will be a few days, and 20 miles before we will even catch a glimpse of snow. Over the next four days our goal was simple: cut 20 miles through the rain forest, navigate crevasse-stricken glaciers, climb the rock wall to the summit, and ultimately, descend the north face of Mount Olympus via splitboard. Okay, maybe not simple, but we knew the adventure would be worth it.


TRIP STATS ÂStart:

Hoh River Visitor Center

Length of time: 4 nights, 5 days Backpack weight: 50 lbs. When: July Wildlife seen: Bear, grouse, deer, mountain goats, frogs and butterflies Miles trekked: 50+ Best mountain views: Baker, Rainier, Adams, St. Helens Elevation gained: 7,400 feet Highest point: Mt. Olympus at 7,965 feet

The journey started at the Hoh River Visitor Center. We set out on the trail, packs loaded with snowboards, camera gear, climbing equipment, camping essentials and food for four nights. All in, they tipped the scales at just over 50 pounds. The aches went on well after the packs came off. Entering the forest was like taking a step back in time. Ancient old growth trees shot up from the earth. Moss hung suspended in mid-air, draping from branches to the forest floor and sunlight beamed ever so slightly through the overgrown tree cover. Standing in one of the few remaining old growth forests in the continental U.S., it was hard to believe that just a few short hours before, we were battling rush hour traffic, fighting to leave the grips of our 9-to-5 jobs.

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ABOVE: Andrew begins the trip through the Hoh Rain Forest first.

As the trail wound along the river and deeper into the forest, the air grew thick with moisture (and mosquitoes). “Dry” was nowhere to be found. Eventually, the rain picked up and we were forced to take refuge under three tall oak trees. Nature’s rain fly provided surprisingly good shelter through the night. In the morning, we were back on the trail.

We pushed on through the forest, slowly gaining elevation. With time, the dense, overgrown landscape transitioned into a temperate forest. Here, the mossdraped, old growth trees were replaced with towering hemlock. Rivers with waterfalls, and day-hikers with a variety of natural creatures — a trade we were quite all right with. Our giant packs were not meant for such small trails — the snowboards protruding from them created


CLOCKWISE: A topographical map shows the topographical map of Mount Olympus. Andrew on the way to the summit. Patrick warms up with coffee in the early morning hours. A mountain goat sighting. WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE | Fall 2017

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{Mountain beauty} We broke out of the tree-line and stepped into what felt like a scene from the Sound of Music. These glacier-fed, sub-alpine meadows were alive and erupting with color. Wildowers of every hue dominated the landscape. 34

Fall 2017 | WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE

ABOVE: Patrick navigates a stream crossing. LEFT: Mountain meadows are a good change of scenery after dense forest.


ABOVE: Andrew climbing, Patrick jumps a crevasse and Andrew rides down the mountain. BELOW: Andrew awaiting the mountain. RIGHT: A frog in the forest. localized rain showers as we passed under low-hanging branches. After an hour on the trail, we were soaked again. Just as we were getting fed up with the moisture, the sun started to beam through the trees. Warming everything in its path, steam erupted all around us. It was here where we got our first glimpse of the mountain. Clouded by a misty haze we could see it lurking in the distance. Finally, we were in sight of our objective. Not long after, we broke out of the tree-line and stepped into what felt like a scene from “The Sound of Music.” These glacier-fed, sub-alpine meadows were alive and erupting with color. Wildflowers of every hue dominated the landscape. Grouse hid in the bushes, butterflies fluttered through the air and deer grazed in the distance, bringing an interesting realization: All of this life, all of this color, was only possible because of the glacier we were about to climb. Surely it couldn’t get any better than this. But, upward we went, in search of Olympus. As the trail wound its way higher, the fields of wildflowers were quickly transformed into fields of loose rock and blue ice. In a moment’s notice, the trail reached its terminus and we stood atop a ridge line, staring face to face

with Mount Olympus. Below us was the infamous Blue Glacier — cascading its way through the valley, it posed an interesting threat. Its spiderwebbed crevasse structure created a minefield we would have to safely navigate in order to get to the base of Olympus. We planned our route carefully and descended the ridge. After traveling 20 miles through the forest and having lunch in the meadows, it was bizarre to be stepping out onto the glacier. We went from crossing logs, to crossing crevasses. From warm summer air, to ice-chilled wind. This was the moment the trip shifted gears and the real climb began. We charged upward toward our base camp at Crystal Pass. After what seemed like an eternity, we crested the ridge and arrived at our stopping point. We set up camp and soaked in the last few remaining rays of sunshine before calling it a night. In a few short hours we would be waking up and heading for the summit. Almost as soon as our heads hit the pillow, we were being woken by the early morning light. Time to get going. We noticed quickly that the typical route to the summit was blocked by

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On more popular climbs (like Rainier) this whole area would be congested with climbers. Ladders would be laid across the crevasses, and a boot path would be kicked in all the way to the summit. Not here. Not on Olympus. It was just us, and the mountain.


20 miles deep in the Olympic Mountains, about to embark on our seventh consecutive month of snowboarding in 2017.

a bergschrund big enough to swallow a Volkswagen. This forced us to traverse the northeastern slopes around to the backside of Olympus. When we made it around back, we were greeted by a sight like no other. On more popular climbs (like Rainier) this whole area would be congested with climbers. Ladders would be laid across the crevasses, and a boot path would be kicked in all the way to the summit. Not here. Not on Olympus. It was just us, and the mountain. We surveyed the landscape, and pushed onward. As we leapt over crevasses that blocked our path, it was hard not to stare down into the dark abyss below — a fall here surely meant your life. No time for those thoughts, keep moving. Eventually we were back on rock. We stripped our packs, and made a beeline for the summit. Scrambling up the ridge was one of the most fun parts of the climb. With no pack, we were finally nimble. Pulling ourselves up the rock face we quickly arrived at the summit. We were rewarded with private views of the Pacific Ring of Fire — Mts. Baker, Rainier, Adams, and St. Helens all stood proudly, dominating the skyline around us. Faintly visible in the distance, were Puget Sound and the Pacific Ocean. A surreal view to say the least. Where else can one see endless mountaintops, rolling evergreen hills, and the ocean all at once? Not to mention having it all to yourself. After grabbing a quick snack on the summit, it was time for the fun part — the descent. For the majority of skiers and snowboarders in the Pacific Northwest, the end of February means hanging up the gear and calling it quits for the season. But for a select group of dedicated (or crazy) individuals, it’s ski season 12 months a year. And there we were — the middle of July,

We snapped our boards together, bound up, and shot down the mountain. The sun’s rays had cooked the frozen glacier to a perfect consistency. The snow was soft, but not overly slushy — conditions sought after by the alpine community like gold in the Klondike. We carved our way down the mountain, ripping across the glacier and screaming past our agonizing uphill path from the day before. I laughed as I remembered the odd looks and comments from those in the parking lot. If they could see us now! Before we knew it, we were back on the trail again. Packs loaded to the brim, slogging our way out. Down through the meadow, back into the forest, along the river; one foot after another. We fell into a trance-like state, pushing along, mesmerized by the trail in front of us. Suddenly, the trance was broken by the sound of a fellow climber up ahead. Bright-eyed and high-spirited, he was clearly at the beginning of his journey. A mere four days prior, we had been in his shoes. Eager to start our adventure, but ignorant to the sheer mass of the Olympic Wilderness, blind to its beauty and unknowing of its intricacies. In total we traveled more than 50 miles, through three completely different ecosystems, and up one of the most coveted mountains in the Pacific Northwest. What a ride it had been. As the unknown climber neared us he called out, “Splitboards!? You guys must’ve rode the glacier?” Finally, someone who understood. “Sure did,” we responded. “Congrats, that’s one helluva trip!” And one hell of a trip it was.

About the Authors Together, they hope to join forces with the goal of showcasing some of the world’s harshest environments. Check out their work and follow the journey at www.alpenbros.com

PATRICK DUFFY A weekend warrior in the truest sense of the term, Patrick grew up in Cosmopolis and works as an aerospace consultant Monday through Friday and spends his weekends exploring the mystical ÌiÀÀ>ˆ˜̅i*>VˆwV œÀ̅ÜiÃÌ…>Ã̜ offer. He prides himself on being able to walk the line between the corporate world and adventure community. He hopes to use his aerospace knowledge, adventurous spirit, and story telling ability to push the limits of human creativity and discovery — inspiring others to explore the world (and other worlds) around them. Follow him on his adventures via instagram: @pat__duffy

ANDREW VEITH Working as a director/producer in the advertising industry, Andrew’s true passion is mountain climbing. He was raised in the ,i`“œ˜`>˜`Ü>ÃwÀÃÌ inspired by his grandfather, who was a key member of Washington’s Search & Rescue program, and later by documentaries telling the stories of incredible mountain climbs. His love of photography and storytelling have him set on working in Hollywood someday, and his passion for the mountains continues to drive him to get out and climb. Check out his work via instagram: @andrew_veith

ABOVE: The sun breaks through the trees on Patrick’s trek through the woods. WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE | Fall 2017

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First snows on the Olympic Mountains, as seen from the Quinault Valley.

A PHOTO ESSAY BY STUART MAY

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Fall 2017 | WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE


Top: Snowy owl at sunset in Ocean Shores. Bottom left: A pair of eagles watch everything along the beach in Ocean Shores. Bottom right: The rail bridge on a foggy morning in Aberdeen.

WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE | Fall 2017

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From top: Resting tugboats in Hoquiam. Shorebird sprawl: sandpipers ock to the beach in Ocean Shores. Storm surge: The sun brings out amazing colors after the storms in Ocean Shores.


Top: A gull enjoys the PaciďŹ c sunset in Ocean Shores. Right: Jetty grasses in Ocean Shores.

ABOUT THE PHOTOGRAPHER Stuart May is a native of Glasgow, Scotland, and now lives in western Washington. He is an award-winning nature photographer, conservationist and animal rights advocate. His work has been featured in numerous publications and shown in several galleries in Washington and Idaho -- including his own Fusions Art Gallery in Ocean Shores. View more of his work at his website, www.stuartdmayphotography.com, and at his photoblog, stuartmay.wordpress.com.

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EVENTS SEPTEMBER 1-3 Annual Arts & Crafts Festival at the Ocean Shores Convention Center, www.associatedarts.org. 1-4 Come Play on Labor Day It’s an event, an invitation and an early autumn ritual in South Bend. Watch the grand parade, take in the fireworks, visit the carnival, join the Tin Man Triathlon. 2-3 Kelpers Festival and Shake Rat Rendezvous Featuring a tug-of-war competition between Moclips and Pacific Beach, kids’ parade, full parade in Pacific Beach on Sunday, and various logging competitions.

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2 71st Seafood Festival & Craft Show This perennial favorite features heaping plates of great food, live music and local crafters on the Westport Maritime Museum grounds.

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Affordable Prices Vettes at the Marina Dozens of classic Corvettes along the Westport Marina.

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2-4 Chinook Arts Festival The festival features blown glass, stained glass, photography, jewelry, oil and watercolor paintings, pottery, wood sculptures and more in this Long Beach Peninsula town. 8 Slow Drag at the Port Fans line Howerton Way at the Port of Ilwaco to watch this classic car competition where slow and steady wins the race. Vehicles accelerate about 15 feet before coasting the final 200 yards to the finish line — and the car that stops closest to the line is the victor.


9 Brady’s Oyster Feed Oysters any way you like ’em at Brady’s Oysters near Westport, just west of the Elk River Bridge on State Route 105. Loggers Playday One the nation’s last surviving classic logging shows, where pros share their skills and compete for the title of All Around Logger. Daylong celebration includes the logging show and competition at Hoquiam’s historic Olympic Stadium, along with a downtown parade and fireworks. 9-10 Rod Run to the End of the World From Model Ts to muscle cars, it features acres of automobiles and plenty of chrome eye-candy. Held in Ocean Park, attendees will also be treated to food and craft vendors and a swap meet. 15-17 Westport Maritime Music Festival Beer garden, fun, food and music, featuring several bands playing in a variety of styles at the Westport Maritime Museum. Whale of Quilt Show At the Ocean Shores Convention Center.

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16 Discover Lake Sylvia Fall Festival Fun for all ages as visitors enjoy Lake Sylvia State Park through mountain bike and off-road running races, live music and even shopping for art around the park. 16-17 30 Miles of Junque 20th annual beachwide garage sale from Markham to Tokeland. Operation Shore Patrol 45th annual beach cleanup. Four-wheelers converge on the beaches to tidy up after the summer season. 21 Unit Souzou Powerful Taiko-style musicians at the Bishop Center for the Performing Arts in Aberdeen.

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gg EVENTS

22-24 Clean Water Classic surfing competition Washington’s largest surf contest and the 16th annual benefit for the Surfrider Foundation. At the South Jetty and Groins off Neddie Rose Drive in Westport. www. cleanwaterclassic. com. 22 Benefit dinner for Coastal Harvest Food Bank Annual fundraising dinner at Seabrook Town Hall. This will be the third year celebrating the harvest and raising money for a very worthy cause. 23-24 Salmon Tales Fifth annual celebration of Westport’s favorite fish and the people who chase after them. Held on the grounds of Westport Maritime Museum. www.salmontales.info. 24 “Peter Pan” National Theatre Live screening at the Bishop Center for the Performing Arts in Aberdeen.

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30 Salmon & Brew Fest This second annual event at Fleet Park in Montesano includes a salmon derby, beer festival and salmon cookoff.

OCTOBER 7 Big Foot Brew Fest Craft brewers, Big Foot, food and live music at Seabrook. “God is a Scottish Drag Queen” An uproarious comedy at the Bishop Center for the Performing Arts in Aberdeen. 13-15 Water Music Festival The 32nd annual event is a three-concert series featuring jazz and classical musicians performing in intimate venues up and down the Long Beach Peninsula.


14-15 Cranberry Harvest Festival Celebrated with crafts, food, drink and decorations at Grayland Community Hall. Bog tours, a cookoff, local cranberry products, music and a Saturday nighttime Firefly Parade in Grayland.

Call 360-532-1900 300 Myrtle St. Hoquiam, WA

Quality Pet Care Serving the Twin Harbors since 1980

Cranberrian Fair The Columbia Pacific Heritage Museum in Ilwaco hosts this celebration of the bog berry all weekend. 18 Song Catchers Native American song and dance at the Bishop Center for the Performing Arts in Aberdeen. 21 Great Pumpkin Carving Competition The second annual event for pros and amateurs goes on all day in Seabrook. “Mowgli, The Jungle Book Ballet” By the Eugene Ballet Co. at the Bishop Center for the Performing Arts in Aberdeen.

Dr. David Westby and Dr. Dan Brown If pets p could drive, it’s where they’d t go!

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25-29 Irish Music Festival centered at Galway Bay restaurant and the Ocean Shores Convention Center. www.galwaybacyirishpub.com. 26 Jeremy Kittel Trio Fiddler, violinist and composer at the Bishop Center for the Performing Arts in Aberdeen.

NOVEMBER 4 Toast the Harbor Wine and Food Festival The Aberdeen Lions host this delicious event at the Quinault Beach Resort.

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gg EVENTS

HEADQUARTERS Rods & Reels Hard & Soft Baits Jigs & Rigs Fish Attractant Terminal Tackle Tackle Storage Tackle Craft

Fishing Line Fishing Tools Waders & Vests Marine Electronics Landing Nets Fillet Knives and More!

10 Distillery Dinner Mill 109 Restaurant and Pub in Seabrook partners with Wishkah River Distillery for this dinner. 10- 18 Grays Harbor College Fall Drama “Hannah, Standing Up,” a new play by Lynne Lerych, at the Bishop Center for the Performing Arts in Aberdeen. 24-26 Winter Fanta-Sea A pre-Christmas festival of holiday gifts and vendors at the Ocean Shores Convention Center. 30 Grays Harbor College Fall Concert Put on by the college’s music department at the Bishop Center for the Performing Arts in Aberdeen.

DECEMBER www.denniscompany.com est. 1905 Raymond Long Beach Aberdeen Elma

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Saturdays Christmas Market at the Port This market at the Port of Ilwaco brings holiday cheer and provides an opportunity to shop from the source. The market debuts Nov. 25 and then runs every Saturday through Dec. 23. 2 Santa By The Sea Santa arrives at Float 6 at the Westport Marina at 11 a.m. and then holds court at the the Maritime Museum. 3 Holiday Bazaar at Seabrook Local artists and crafters join in the Town Hall selling unique and hand-made goods for the holidays. GH Symphony Orchestra “Musica Latino Sinfonia” at the Bishop Center for the Performing Arts in Aberdeen.

Put yourself in holiday spirit and attend the events at the Festival of Lights in Montesano. Don’t miss the parade!

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Fall 2017 | WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE

8-10 Festival of Lights Montesano residents go all out with their holiday lights. The city takes it seriously: there’s a choir in the county courthouse, a yule log at Fleet Park downtown and a lighted nighttime parade on Saturday.


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City of Aberdeen

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Northwest Carriage Museum

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Willapa Harbor Chamber of Commerce

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Visit us online at facebook.com/GraysHarborTourism WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE | Fall 2017

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gg WHO & WHY

On coming back...

“Now I see what the tourists see: beautiful waterways, ocean, beaches, trails, trees, green, moss, eagles, bears, historic old towns, history, my home.”

WHY I LOVE IT HERE: by Douglas Orr PH O T OS B Y KA T B R YA NT

As a kid living on the Harbor, like most young people, I longed to escape the never-ending gray skies, the tireless rain and the lack of opportunity that seemed to be ground into the very fibers of this place. As I grew older, I planned my strategy for my escape. No. 1 on the list: Get a job with a large nationwide company so I could transfer out of the area. My plan started with a job at JCPenney in downtown Aberdeen, which led to JCPenney in Lakewood, Calif. Goodbye, Grays Harbor! End of gray skies, end of rain, end of depression. Fast-forward 30 years, and I’m back. Now I see what the tourists see: beautiful waterways, ocean, beaches, trails, trees, green, moss, eagles, bears, historic old towns, history, my home. Life offers all of us so many opportunities. Although something bad happened to my partner, David, to force us to leave our home and life in California, all trails seemed to point to Aberdeen. Our search for a new, simpler life led us to the dilapidated Eagles building in Aberdeen. What was once a stunning 1909 Spanish gem of a structure had become sad and lifeless — its beautiful balcony façade removed, its iconic tower torn down, windows boarded over or removed, dormers hacked off, the roof one step away from collapse. A town that once cherished the hall now preferred the building be gone, but we saw a spark of life remaining. The building has been a money pit and a challenge, to say the least — but no one said it would be easy. As we create our dream of an Aberdeen Art Center in our old building, we have our days off — and we make the most of them! As a young man living here, my eyes were closed to the beauty. Maybe I was

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Fall 2017 | WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE


A Unique Journey into the Pacific Northwest Coastal Lifestyle.

FACING PAGE: Douglas Orr poses with some of his works at Alder Grove Gallery, part of the Aberdeen Art Center. ABOVE: Orr stands next to the image he painted of Kurt Cobain Memorial Park, part of his “Bubbles” mural in downtown Aberdeen. caught up in other things, but I didn’t see the magic of the Harbor; I didn’t see the moss, the trees, the birds. Now that I have returned, I see the beauty I missed, and I can’t get enough of it. Although I was blessed to have had the chance to see the world, I came to the realization that opportunity is here, in Grays Harbor. Dreams can come true here. Like others, David and I have seen what works in other small towns. We’ve seen art become the economic driver of communities, and we’re glad to be a part of the transformation that is beginning to take hold on the Harbor. When I first returned to Aberdeen, I was so saddened by what had been destroyed while I was gone, by the huge loss of history, and by all the negativity. We are trying to change that attitude of self-destruction, and we are so happy to be welcomed and embraced by the community for our efforts. Truly, there is no place like home. We are blessed beyond words and proud to be a part of the solution. Grays Harbor is somewhere over the rainbow, and there is no other place on Earth we’d rather be. ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Artist Douglas Orr is a Grays Harbor native who moved to California for 25 years, then returned to the area in 2014. After serving for about a year as executive director of the Ocean Shores Chamber of Commerce, he established the Aberdeen Art Center in an effort to help revitalize that city’s downtown and support local artists. He has painted two large murals in Aberdeen and is planning to do more.

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WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE | Fall 2017

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gg LAST SHOT

White horses: As the waves run up the sands, a slow shutter speed sets the white horses free in Ocean Shores. Photo by Stuart May. See his other photos on pages 38-41.

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Fall 2017 | WASHINGTON COAST MAGAZINE

AA RON LA VIN SKY

Water: Soft ocean waves


Profile for Sound Publishing

Washington Coast Magazine, September 02, 2017  

September 02, 2017 edition of the Washington Coast Magazine

Washington Coast Magazine, September 02, 2017  

September 02, 2017 edition of the Washington Coast Magazine