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The Good Life. It’s Just A Ferry Ride Away.

The Best of Puget Sound If this is your first visit to Vashon Island, you’re about to discover one of the best-kept secrets on Puget Sound. A fifteen-minute ferry ride from either Seattle or Tacoma, Vashon Island offers more than fifty miles of saltwater beaches, acres of rolling pastures, breathtaking views along its country roads, and majestic forests. The thriving community offers a full range of services, top-rated schools, and encourages active involvement at every level from the arts to the environment.

Finding Your Own “Best Place” When you’re ready to explore the many wonderful properties that Vashon Island has to offer, come and see me. For many successive years I have been one of the top producing agents and leading listing agent on the Island. I specialize in high-end waterfront and buyer’s agency.

The Good Life Can Be Yours - On Vashon Island. John L. Scott/Vashon X TOLL FREE 1-800-346-3332 X Photo ©2005 Peter Murray


Destination Vashon is a special publication of the

Destination Vashon | Contents short takes 11 | Hikes: A list

38 | Quirky Vashon

14 | Art, music and more

42 | Helpful information

23 | Farm stands: What’s fresh

46 | Vashon’s first historian

24 | Farmers Market

48 | Barns tell a story

25 | Whales grace our waters

50 | Thrift stores aplenty

Nance Scott, Linda Henley

28 | A calendar of events

55 | Dogs: Helpful information


31 | Children: A few ideas

62 | Accommodations: A list

32 | Kayaking Vashon

66 | Festivals all year long

33 | Beaches abound

68 | Restaurants: A list

35 | Explore Point Robinson

73 | VoV Standing By


Daralyn Anderson

Editor Leslie Brown

Design & Production

Daralyn Anderson, Matthew Olds

Writers Leslie Brown, Dan Chasan, Bruce Haulman, Amelia Heagerty, Rayna Holtz, Susan McCabe, Lesley Reed, Susan Riemer, Elizabeth Shepherd, Ann Stateler, Rebecca Wittman

About the cover: Vashon’s many delights are captured by some of the Island’s finest photographers. Sailboat and fawn photos by Cindy Koch; child photo by Ray Pfortner; farmer photo by Ralph Moore. To get reprints of these or any other pictures found in Destination Vashon, e-mail The Beachcomber at

Photographers Leslie Brown, Amelia Heagerty, Marnie Jones, Cindy Koch, Rondi Lightmark, Ralph Moore, Peter Murray, Ray Pfortner, Peter Ray, Lesley Reed, Tim Robinson, John Sage, Elizabeth Shepherd, Robert Teagardin, Laurie Tucker, Mike Urban

Destination Vashon is published annually by Sound Publishing, owner of The Vashon-Maury Island Beachcomber. No part of this publication may be reprinted without permission. For additional copies, call (206) 463-9195 or e-mail Š2010 Sound Publishing







9750 SW Bank Rd, Vashon









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Owner/Designated Escrow Officer

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STIHL Dealer

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Destination Vashon |

Special features

 Island Real Estate Experts 

Buyer & Seller Representation

 Personalized Web Searches  Windermere Bridge Loan

Stop by our office for Free Maps, Real Estate Catalogs and Information


A world of natural beauty | Rayna Holtz Page 8

Rural life

A prodigal daughter comes home | Rebecca Wittman Page 20

Island Romance

Why some move to Vashon | Elizabeth Shepherd Page 36

Living history

Remembering a simpler time | Amelia Heagerty Page 44


Fun can be had then, too | Susan McCabe Page 51


Another way to know the Island | Dan Chasan Page 56

Marine life

Take a peek into the deep | Lesley Reed Page 60

Windermere Real Estate/Vashon Island, Inc.

17141 Vashon Hwy SW | PO Box 1867 | 206-463-9148

Ray Pfortner Photo


Vashon Island

This place

we call


Cindy Koch Photo

Destination Vashon is our annual tribute to this place we call home — a chance to consider why some 11,000 souls put up with ferry lines, scant services and high gas prices to live on an atoll in the Sound. Peruse these pages, and it’s easy to see why. In part, it’s the sheer beauty of the place. Country roads that give rise to sweeping vistas. Expansive beaches dotted with driftwood. A patchwork of pastures and woods, barns and cottages that suggests a simpler time. In part, it’s the community. What happens when you take 11,000 people and put them on an Island in the Maritime Northwest, where the winter nights are long? A lot, it turns out. Opera, art, theater, music, home-grown comedy, sophisticated lectures, book readings, wine tastings, cookie contests

and community gatherings of every stripe. A fount of creativity seems to exist on this Island, nurtured by rain, fog, fresh air and beauty. In this issue of Destination Vashon, we try to give a feel for what awaits you on this small Island in the Sound — from hikes to beachcombing, galleries to thrift shops. But this is not just a publication for visitors. Those who have already carved out their Island niche will find gems in the pages that follow as well. And because knowing a place means knowing its ecology — the streams, forests and geology that give Vashon form — we begin our tour of the Island with a piece by naturalist Rayna Holtz, an Islander who seems to know Vashon from the inside out. Drink it in. The Island awaits you. — Leslie Brown, editor

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Peter Murray Photo

Shinglemill Creek flows into Fern Cove on the northwestern edge of the Island.

A closer look

Island Ecology

Coming home to a world of beauty

By Rayna Holtz


eturning to the Island after a day in the city, I feel my senses wake up in anticipation of coming home to Vashon’s diverse neighborhoods. Hours among built environments — repetitiously human-oriented — tire me, and I long for the variety in forests, ponds and beaches, with nature’s innumerable patterns and voices. Back on Vashon, I am again just one among hundreds of thriving species, living in neighborhoods different enough to accommodate all of us — the many plant and

animals that, like me, have made a home here.

Even though the Island is only about 12 miles long and six miles at the broadest, we have dozens of biological communities, their different conditions formed by glaciations, earthquakes, weather, landslides, stream erosion, saltwater currents, orientation to sun and other natural processes that work constantly to change and renew the landscape. When the last of several glaciations melted northward 13,000 years ago, it left behind deposits of clay, compacted soils, sand and gravel. The shorelines soon developed sloping intertidal beaches from landslides off the bluffs, currents moving along the beaches and soils carried down by streams. Some of the coastal drifts of sand created salt marshes, like the one on KVI

Beach, where salt-tolerant pickleweed, jaumea and saltgrass grow and which shelters shellfish, small invertebrates and wintering and migrating waterfowl — such as the green-winged teal, mallards, killdeer and sandpipers. Our most common upland community is forests of hemlock, Western red cedar, Douglas fir, big-leaf maple, red alder, madrone and willows — forests that are now reclaiming abandoned farm fields, ravines and hillsides. Their cones provide seeds for Douglas squirrels and flying squirrels, a diet that is supplemented by fungi and lichens growing on and under the branches. Crossbills also eat conifer seeds, using beaks specially shaped to pry the seeds out of cones. Pileated woodpeckers drill holes as they forage for insect larvae. These and their large nest holes become homes for other species of birds and mammals later on.

2010–2011 || DESTINATION VASHON 9 The leafy trees sustain communities of insects that feed on them and in turn become food for Townsend’s and blackthroated gray warblers and Western tanagers. Salmonberry, salal and huckleberry bushes grow in the partial shade and provide berries for raccoons, robins, flickers, towhees. The tiny and subtle brown elfin butterfly depends on salal as its caterpillars’ host plant. One of our rarest communities is the boggy fen, where mats of sphagnum moss grow in stagnant rainwater that collects in glacial depressions. This plant has the remarkable ability to create highly acid conditions in the water and absorb most of the available nutrients so that few other plants can survive. Labrador tea and bog laurel have adapted, partly by growing small leaves which they retain in the winter. At Whispering Firs Bog, a preserve owned by the Vashon-Maury Island Land Trust, miniature cedars and hemlocks grow like natural bonsai, stunted by their harsh environment. Most of our sphagnum wetlands have been drained and cleared, but there are other small remnant fens in south Vashon. Lost Lake, another land trust preserve, is the best-known of this string of little slump ponds extending south from Inspiration Point, between Quartermaster Harbor and the Vashon plateau. They sit in a shallow basin formed when a milelong section of bluff broke off ages ago and slumped easterly, toward the shoreline. In these wetlands, moisture-loving neighborhoods include three species of sphagnum moss, Labrador tea, bog laurel, Pacific silverleaf, woolgrass bulrush and yellow

stream violets. Red-legged frogs lounge on the moss between swims. During rainy winter and spring breeding seasons, rough-skinned newts converge on the pond. Their brown backs match dead leaves on the ground, but they have bright orange bellies. Red-legged frogs, long-toed salamanders, rough-skinned newts and other amphibians enjoy living in damp areas all over Vashon, particularly the northwest shoulder and north-central swath, which receive the most rain in an average year (45 to 50 inches). Pacific treefrogs are omnipresent. Nearly everyone can open a window in early March and hear their choruses — our annual harbinger of spring. Shinglemill Creek, the Peter Murray Photo stream that drains the wet A cedar waxwing captures a dragonfly. north end, flows from wetsometimes nests in the eroding face of one lands between Bank and steep western bluff dubbed “the Grand Cove roads northward to Fern Cove. In Canyon” by land trust stewards of the its shady ravine, abundant mosses and ’90s. The butterflies of north and middle licorice ferns drape its maples and conifers. Purple flowering veronica and bright- Vashon are forest-edge lepidoptera — the satyr anglewing, spring azure, Western yellow skunk cabbage grow near the tiger swallowtail, Lorquin’s admiral. water and lush saxifrages nod along the trails. An American dipper moved into the By contrast, along the southeast-facing stream 10 years back and winter wrens side of Maury Island, largely composed of like to forage at the stream’s edge. gravel and sand, rainfall averages about 10 to 15 inches less than northwest Vashon. The steep hillsides are prone to slide in Madrone forests dominate the sunny, periods of heavy rainfall, and a kingfisher

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206/999-6470 Vashon Island



Join Us for our 101st


+ 6 -:tt 2010

Farm Tour

September 25, 2010

Trick-Or-Treating Town Merchants October 30, 2010

Open House Tree Lighting December 3, 2010

Spring Fling Egg Hunt April 23, 2011

Strawberry Festival July 15, 16 & 17, 2011

Tourist Information Center t. 206-463-6217 f. 206-463-7590 10#PY 7BTIPO*TMBOEt7BTIPO7JMMBHF 17205 Vashon Hwy SW, C-2


well-drained bluffs, mixed with Douglas fir, hazelnut, honeysuckle, ocean spray, wild cucumber and poison oak. This is the domain of the Western fence lizard and the rubber boa, a brown snake named for its smooth, glossy Tim Robinson Photo skin. Sara orangeSara orange-tip tip and silvery blue butterflies are seen nowhere else on Vashon except here, along southeast Maury and Vashon’s south end. Wild lupines, the food eaten by caterpillars of the silvery blues, thrive in places along the Maury shoreline. Indian paintbrush is also seen on these southern shoreline bluffs — and nowhere else on the Island. Maury has fewer, shorter streams than Vashon. Yet at least two of them — Mileta Creek and Raab’s Lagoon Creek — host cutthroat trout. Cutthroat trout are the salmonid species most at home in Vashon’s streams. They are our guys, resilient, adaptable and able to use the smallest tributaries, moving upstream during winter high water. They remain longer in the streams than coho and chum and instead of swimming out to the Pacific, they live their adult lives in the shallow waters around their home island. They are able to spawn in about 18 Vashon streams, while coho spawn in half a dozen and chum in just two. Best of all, unlike coho and chum, which spawn once and die, the cutthroat are able to return multiple years to spawn in their natal creeks and swim back to saltwater. There are many special Vashon neighborhoods. Each upland pond has its own special characteristics. Mukai Pond in Island Center Forest has wonderful dragonflies and summer resident cedar waxwings and violet-green swallows to hunt them. It is bordered by a beautiful grove of aspen and red-osier dogwood and by a meadow where common yellowthroats nest. Agren Park’s woods include a stately clump of mature red cedars. The Burton Woods have had a century to recover from pioneer loggers and have regained a few old-growth traits of diversity with open patches and nurse Rayna logs. Holtz Wherever you are Rayna Holtz is a on Vashon, chances librarian at the are you’re within Vashon Library and an amateur walking distance of naturalist who two or three small helped found ecosystems. Dramas the Vashonof daily life play out Maury Island in these woodlands Land Trust and and ponds. Come the Vashonto the play. Watch. Maury Island Audubon Society. Listen.

2010–2011 || DESTINATION VASHON 11

Spotlight | Hiking

A walk in the woods

Vashon has gifts to offer to those who like to don a pair of boots and trek through the woods. Thanks in large part to the Vashon-Maury Island Land Trust, the Vashon Park District and King County, trails — some of which extend for miles — wend through most of Vashon’s natural areas, parks and preserves. Many are dog-friendly and horse-friendly. All are kid-friendly. So lace up your boots, and explore the Island’s wild side. A list of our favorites follows.

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Island Center Forest boasts nine miles of trails.

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Island Center Forest This 363-acre expanse, owned by King County and managed by a consortium of users, was once a working forest. Today, it’s the largest contiguous forest on the Island; it boasts a warren of serpentine trails, two ponds and extensive wetlands; and, as the name suggests, it’s centrally located. Kiosks are now in place, replete with maps that can help hikers find their way. How to get there: There are several entrances into the forest, but the one that offers the best parking is off of Cemetery Road. Head west on Cemetery from Vashon Highway; take a right on 115th Avenue S.W. — a dirt road — and proceed a quarter-mile to the end. Dogs, horses and mountain bikes are allowed.

Fisher Pond Preserve A lovely, half-mile trail circumnavigates Fisher Pond, named for Islander Bill Fisher, who donated this 90-acre preserve to the land trust more than a decade ago. At the west end, a picnic shelter and table are perched above the pond, providing expansive views of this shallow, bird-friendly lake. Look for wood ducks, herons and pied-billed grebes. The land trust has built an additional trail

Peter Murray Photo

Fisher Pond changes with the seasons, offering beauty and serenity all year long. from the east end of the loop, which extends through a lovely forest to Cove Road, and another from the west end, which extends almost to Agren Park. How to get there: Fisher Pond is located on

Bank Road S.W., about a mile west of town. Just before reaching the pond, there’s a pullout along the road with room for a few cars. The trail heads north from there. No dogs are allowed.

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2010–2011 || DESTINATION VASHON 13

Shinglemill Creek/Fern Cove Vashon’s newest trail is a delightful twomile traverse that takes hikers along the crest of a ridge, into a tree-studded ravine, across Needle Creek and along the shores of Shinglemill Creek, a salmon-bearing stream that empties out into Fern Cove. At the end of this topographically diverse trail, cross Cedarhurst Road S.W. and pick up the last leg — a final stretch that leads to the expansive mudflats at Fern Cove. How to get there: From Vashon town, head north on the highway about two miles; head west on 156th Avenue S.W. about 3/10s of a mile. The trailhead is on the north side of the road. Parking is very limited. Dogs are allowed on the trail but not at Fern Cove.

Burton Acres This 64-acre park on the Burton Peninsula offers up several lovely trails winding through a mature, diverse forest, with towering big-leaf maples, Douglas firs and the occasional Pacific yew. The trails are flat and provide easy walking. How to get there: Take Vashon Highway into Burton and head east onto S.W. Burton Drive. Turn right at 97th Ave. S.W. and follow the road to Jensen Point Park, where parking is available. Dogs are allowed.

Dockton Forest This county-owned forest in Dockton is a 125-acre expanse, second only in size to Island Center Forest, offering visitors a meander through a mixed forest of Douglas firs, mature maples, madrones and alders. Its hilly web of trails is popular among the equestrian community and mountain bikers. How to get there: The easiest entrance is right across the road from the Dockton Park. Head to Dockton on Dockton Road S.W. A pullout large enough to accommodate horse

Leslie Brown Photo

Horseback riding is popular in Island Center Forest. trailers can be found on the east side of the road just before reaching the park.

Christensen Pond Preserve A birder’s paradise, this beautiful, 30-acre preserve on the west side of the Island was potected in 2000 with the help of the Vashon Audubon Society. It offers up both a small pond and extensive wetlands — a haven for migratory songbirds, waterfowl, owls, herons and hawks. It is also rich in invertebrates and mammals such as river otters. A trail, not quite a mile long, circumnavigates the pond through a pleasant coniferous forest. The pond forms the headwaters of Christensen Creek, which flows into Colvos Passage through the best preserved drainage area on Vashon. How to get there: The preserve is due west

of Burton on Wax Orchard Road just south of 232nd Street. The trail is marked by a “nature preserve” sign. Dogs are not allowed.

For more information

Maps of the trails for some of these preserves can be obtained from the Vashon-Maury Island Land Trust at 10014 S.W. Bank Road. Or download PDFs of the maps from its Web site — Or pick up a copy of “Walks, Trails and Parks on Vashon Island,” written by John Gerstle and Susan Sullivan. The book is available at any book store or through the Vashon Park District.



Spotlight | Visual Arts

Vashon celebrates its many artists

Vashon is an artful place. Not only is it surrounded by natural wonders, but it also boasts a vibrant community of artists, people who have devoted their time and talents to creating an abundance of work that graces the walls of the Island’s many galleries and shops. Think of an art form — printmaking, painting, sculpture, pottery, tile-making, glass-blowing — and you can bet it is alive and thriving on the Island. Where to look? Vashon’s galleries are a good place to start.

Enjoy the fruits of First Friday

Elizabeth Shepherd Photo

First Friday patrons enjoy a show at the Blue Heron, one of Vashon’s bustling galleries.

The streets of Vashon are filled with art lovers on the first Friday of every month, when galleries throw open their doors for a festive gallery cruise. Many shops also join in the fun by staying open late and adding refreshments and live music to the mix. The cruise starts at 6 p.m.

Stop by The Beachcomber office for additional copies of Destination Vashon.

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2010–2011 || DESTINATION VASHON 15

Galleries: A local affair Blue Heron Art Center The Blue Heron, owned and operated by Vashon Allied Arts, the Island’s venerable arts organization, is located a couple of miles south of town in a 1912 Odd Fellows hall. Its monthly shows feature a wide range of painters, sculptors, photographers and other visual artists. Located at 19704 Vashon Highway S.W.

Good Merchandise This shop is a treasure trove of locally made goods — one-of-a-kind arts and crafts items that are made by Islanders or other artisans living within a 50-mile radius of Vashon. Located at 17601 1/2 Vashon Highway S.W.

Heron’s Nest Also run by Vashon Allied Arts, this downtown shop features Elaine Summers’ “Fetch,� created for the Vashon Island Pet Protectors’ auction.

many different works by local and regional artists and craftspeople. Located at 17600 Vashon Highway S.W.

Silverwood Gallery Located in a soaring Masonic Hall built in 1894, the Silverwood is the artistic anchor of Burton — a thriving gallery that regularly draws crowds to its monthly openings. Located at 23927 Vashon Highway S.W.

Elizabeth Shepherd Photo

Pam Ingalls, a Vashon painter, has a national following.


Two Wall Gallery This gallery really lives up to its name — it is situated in a long hallway of a Vashon building. The gallery’s eclectic offerings include juried shows and thematic exhibitions, often featuring local artists. Located at 17600 Vashon Highway S.W.

SILVERWOOD GALLERY Discover Vashon’s Landmark Gallery. Featuring fine art, sculpture, ceramics and Eric Heffelfinger Gold Jewelry Design Studio.

New to Vashon’s thriving art scene, this gallery is an artists’ collective with 11 members. The name is an acronym standing for Vashon Artists Linked in Social Engagement, so visitors can expect a provocative mix of fine art, installations, sculpture and other kinds of messagedriven artwork. Located at 17633 Vashon Highway S.W.


 Gallery Exhibits  Performances  Classes  Theatre  Dance  Art Auction  Garden Tour

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Sun. 12-5 Wed.-Sat. 10-6. Visit Silverwood Gallery on facebook for the latest scoop. Next door to the Quartermaster Inn in Burton. Charlotte Masi




Spotlight | Music

From left, Clinton Fearon, Publish the Quest and Kat Eggleston, all popular performers on Vashon.

A vibrant music scene makes the Island rock Vashon is a place populated by music lovers, and luckily for locals and visitors alike, no one has to venture far to find a jam session, concert or even a highbrow night of chamber music or opera on the Island. The epicenter of Vashon’s music scene is Vashon Island Music, a store in the center of town that supplies local players with instruments and gear, and offers children’s classes to the next generation of music-makers. Stop by the store and say hello to its owner Karen Eliasen, who will be happy to tell you about upcoming events and classes at the store. She might even persuade you to join the Island’s very own ukelele band!


Another music hotspot, Red Bicycle Bistro & Sushi, offers an eclectic lineup of concerts featuring players from the Island and beyond. Every kind of music is on tap on the bistro’s stage, including rock, country, reggae, hip hop and even world music. Over at Café Luna, you’ll find not only fresh-roasted coffee and salads made from local organic greens but also an earful of music. Up-and-coming singers and songwriters often play for tips at the café. Vashon Allied Arts, a nonprofit arts organization housed in the Blue Heron Art Center, offers an impressive lineup of local, national and international acts. Its shows are rich and varied — from its New Works Series, showcasing original performances by aspiring Island artists, to a summer music festival at Camp

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2010–2011 || DESTINATION VASHON 17 Burton. Also much loved are its free Summer Concerts in the Park, a collaborative effort with the Vashon Park District. And if you want to move to the music, consider Vashon Folkdancers, a homegrown

group known for bringing an astonishing array of world music ensembles to play at local parks and other venues. No wonder Islanders are so quick to sing the praises of Vashon’s music scene!

Want to know what’s happening on Vashon? Grab a copy of The Beachcomber, which publishes every Wednesday, and take a look at the arts section, which is always filled with information about upcoming music, arts and theatrical events on Vashon. Or visit the paper online at www.vashonbeachcomber. com.

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Here are some other places to look: Vashon Allied Arts: CafĂŠ Luna: Red Bicycle Bistro & Sushi: Vashon Park District: Vashon Community Calendar:

Vashon Art Store

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Homegrown music includes opera, chamber music and more There’s something for every musical taste on Vashon, thanks to a community full of accomplished singers and players who are generous about sharing their talents. The Island is home to a new opera company, led by acclaimed soprano Jennifer Krikawa. Upcoming productions include “The Barber of Seville� and “Madama Butterfly.� The Island is also home to an impressive array of choruses and choirs, including the 80-voice strong Vashon Island Chorale, which recently was invited to jump the pond to sing at Benaroya Hall in Seattle. The Free Range Folk Choir is another choral group that delights Islanders with its eclectic repertoire of folk songs from many different cultures and nations. Love orchestral and chamber music? You’re in luck — Vashon boasts the Vashon-Maury Chamber Orchestra and even has its very own big band — the Portage Philharmonic. So listen up — and you’ll be delighted by what you hear on Vashon. Courtesy Photo

Jennifer Krikawa, Holly Boaz and Andrew Krikawa starred in a performance of “Red Riding Hood� in 2010.

It’s time for a new look.

For more information about Vashon Opera, visit its Web site at To find out when the Vashon Island Chorale is next performing, go to

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2010–2011 || DESTINATION VASHON 19

Quality theater and performance abound, too There’s never a shortage of drama on the gamut from musicals to classics to Vashon — especially the kind that takes light comedies. In July, the company will place on a stage. bring Rodgers and Hammerstein’s classic, “Oklahoma,â€? to the stage at Vashon High The Island is fortunate to boast its own School. world-acclaimed physical theater company, UMO Ensemble. Since the company’s Plays are also frequently presented by arrival on the Island in 1989, its members Vashon Allied Arts at the Blue Heron perhave created more than 20 original works formance space. of theater and toured productions across the United States and Europe. Learn more about Vashon’s The company now performs in Open performance groups Space for Arts & Community, a cavernous former warehouse that was renovated UMO: especially with UMO’s high-flying aerial Open Space for Arts & Community: and acrobatic work in mind. Open Space presents a rotating calendar Church of Great Rain: www.of other performances and community events, including theater, music, dance com and more. The space is also the site of Drama Dock: www.dramadock. The Church of Great Rain, Vashon’s own org version of “A Prairie Home Companion.â€? The monthly variety show features special Vashon Allied Arts: www.vashguests as well as a cadre of locals who make up the Church’s house band and “The Holy Roller Radio Players.â€? ACCOUNT MANAGER Check it out for some of the best in local humor. Another local group, Drama Dock, presents community theater at its finest, $FOUSBM"WFOVF/ 4VJUF$t,FOU8" with producOffice Fax  tions running XXXSBJOJFSUJUMFDPN

Vicki Winge Richie 253.653.2107

UMO, Vashon’s physical comedy troupe.

the little house with the big where wishes are granted and gift wrapped t$BOEZCZUIFPVODF t5PZTUPHT t5PJMFUSJFTTPBQT t$BSET t+FXFMSZBOEüOFHPVSNFU GPPET t0$P FYRVJTJUFPMJWFPJMT 17636 100th Avenue SW Ph (206) 463-9033 find us in uptown Vashon just a block west of Vashon Highway ~ it’s worth the walk to find us ~ Mon. - Sat. 10am-6pm Sunday 11am-5pm



A prodigal daughter reclaims her roots

A closer look

Rural life

The journey of a lifetime — from Idaho to Vashon. By Rebecca Wittman


was raised on an Idaho farm established in 1925 by my grandfather and his bachelor brother. The farm wasn’t in any town; located 15 miles southeast of Lewiston, it unfolded along six miles of McCormack Ridge across from the Blue Mountains, with a wraparound view that stretched out 60 miles at the center. Our mail came to the post office in Culdesac, a French word — and to my mind an aptronym for the town itself — meaning Dead End. The farm, referred to as “the ranch� by all the generations who’ve lived there, became home to one of the most celebrated agricultural operations in the

Rebecca Wittman, right, with her sister Kristine Marvich at the crossroads on the ranch, pictured left.




July to mid-August

Farm Store Open Weekends

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2010–2011 || DESTINATION VASHON 21 state of Idaho, what one magazine back in the ’60s referred to as a resourceful enterprise of “kids, crops and cattle.� By the time that article came out, I was 11 and in the full throes of discontent with membership in the Farmers’ Daughters club. My restlessness in that association had been hardwired from birth and over time blossomed into a fully flowering revolt, one that took me four decades and arrival on Vashon to reconcile. It wasn’t that the ranch wasn’t idyllic; it had that in spades, in ways only Thoreau himself could adequately describe. Spring water sweet as pop rushed ice-cold through the taps. We had a two-acre garden, where corn shucked and eaten right at the stalk challenged man’s foolish obsession with cooking. There were thrilling rides on self-leveling combines that chomped like huge locusts in military formation through undulating acres of fields. The view out the kitchen window was a Grandma Moses patchwork quilt, every season changing in hue and texture. Across the road from the house, tender newborn calves sang us to sleep on cold February nights. We had deep snowy winters and hot, bronze-legged summers. Christmas trees grew at our fingertips. A giant pond frozen in winter played host to gangly little skaters and in spring served up amphibian biology lessons for curious Huck Finns. By the time I was 14, three second-generation partners had spawned a small city of close-knit cousins, 25 of us within a

Kristine, foreground, and Rebecca make cinnamon rolls while the Texaco Metropolitan Opera plays on the radio.

You can find a digital version of this publication in the special sections area at

Michelle L. Ramsden

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four-mile triangle engaged in a daily conspiracy of cheating death and redefining youthful insanity. It was a Charles Russell painting, a Paul Harvey broadcast and Mad Magazine all rolled into one impossibly pastoral scene. But behind the enchanting facade, it was hard work, aching backs and dirt under the fingernails, homemade clothes, home-canned vegetables and homegrown tedium. Housecleaning, cooking, dishes, clothes washing, baby tending, garden weeding — a farmer’s daughter’s life added up to work work work work work. The only urbane moments in life came from Life Magazine and books and, on Saturdays, the Texaco Metropolitan Opera broadcasts, a much beloved soundtrack to weekly cinnamon roll production. As a teenager, all I could think about was escaping — escaping the dirt, the unending work, the sidewalk-less terrain, the unsophisticated people, the way-toolow-on-the-social-scale farming profession. I loved my family with all my heart, but I yearned to replace their league, these simple farmers with their sunup-to-sun-

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17607 Vashon Hwy SW

down ways, with people I thought were more in keeping with my destiny and high-rent sensibilities: lawyers, architects, opera singers, city people. When I left for college, I had my eyes fixed on New York City and center stage of the Metropolitan Opera. I was a budding opera singer and a fully formed snob. Little by little, I got as far away from the ranch as I’d dreamed. I sang in Europe. Seattle became my home. My work took me to New York (in the garment trade, not as a singer), Los Angeles, Hong Kong, Paris. When I’d given up the rag business and returned to singing, I lived in Seattle’s Pike Place Market in a redeveloped pensioner’s hotel — an elegantly gritty urban home with journalists and artists, trust fund bachelors, brioche-baking café owners and picture perfect panhandlers for neighbors. The dirt was where it belonged — in flower pots on the roof deck and under the fingernails of the market vendors. I still visited the ranch regularly, and treasured those visits. But $10 million could not have lured me back there to live. So, what’s that old chestnut? You can take a girl named for Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm out of the country, but you can’t take the farm out of her soul? Vashon Island is my home now. We moved here five years ago on what seemed a whim but now appears a fated course. The day we first set foot on the Island, I kept thinking, “This place feels just like home” — meaning … the ranch in Idaho. How did I know I was being enticed back to my roots, to a community that treasured lost domestic arts and the miracle of growing things in fertile soil? How could I know there were farmers — real farmers — here, in this New Millennium hideaway? This Island, where farming once ruled the land, had gone through its own revolt — only now to be returning in little grass frog leaps to its own lost pond. How did I know I was coming here to go home? I had stumbled on a place where a new generation of farmers reaps what it sows and brings those organic fruits proudly to market, contented and tenacious in the unsung heroics of their chosen profession; a place where tractors aren’t yard art, a place where kids are making new-

fashioned jam, a place where farmers named Michelle and Leda are as respected as ones named Kurt and George, all conducting the business of sunup-tosundown agriculture so that someone else has something to plant or eat. I came home to a place called Vashon Island, and I stood in the presence of these farmers and swooned with admiration, and maybe a little envy, at what they’d embraced. I blushed at my Benedict Arnold campaign against my own agrarian heritage, and felt in that shame an indescribable pride in my family for everything they’d done to make the world a better place, in the profession called farming. Wittman Farms, now run by third and fourth generations of my family, was named The Millennium Farm of the United States in 2000. My brother and cousin went to Washington D.C. to accept that honor on behalf of generations of careful stewards of fertile land along McCormack Ridge, a place the nuns who were my teachers always referred to as “God’s country.” My own reward came in living long enough to see the folly in my youthful condescension, the crime in allowing such snobbery to blind me to such a magnificent view. The bonus on that lesson was finding a place like Vashon Island where I can celebrate my roots, be given another chance to get dirt under my fingernails and watch things grow, surrounded by farmers who are careful stewards of an honorable way of life and another little patch of “God’s country,” who are only too happy to share their bounty and their secrets with a prodigal farmer’s daughter.

Rebecca Wittman

Rebecca Wittman runs Zeteticus, a marketing design studio on Vashon Island. She loves working in her garden, where she sometimes raises a row of wheat in homage to her family’s farm.

2010–2011 || DESTINATION VASHON 23

Ray Pfortner, Ralph Moore, Rondi Lightmark Photos

What’s fresh on Vashon?

Farm stands offer up local produce

Vashon boasts dozens of small, organic farms, many of which have stands open from late spring to late fall. A few extend into the winter months. Here’s a helpful list. Check out the farms’ Web sites to find out what’s in season and their hours of operation. Happy eating!

Country Store & Gardens Vy Biel 463-3655 20211 Vashon Highway S.W.

GreenMan Farm Jasper & Will Forrester 567-4548 8800 S.W. Dilworth Rd. Farm-fresh produce, dairy, eggs

Happy Apple Eggs Ava Apple 463-4456 28407 99th Ave. S.W. Eggs

Hogsback Farm Brian Lowry 463-0738 16530 91st Ave. S.W. Farm-fresh produce and eggs U-pick flowers

Island Meadow Farm

Plum Forest Farm

Chandler Briggs 463-0341 10301 Cemetery Rd. Farm-fresh produce

Rob Peterson & Joanne Jewell 463-3518 20020 107th Ave. S.W. Farm-fresh produce and eggs

K-Jo Farm

Sun Island Farm

Karen Biondo & Joe Walling 20602 111th Ave. S.W. Farm-fresh produce, eggs

LaBoucherie/Sea Breeze Farm George Page 567-4628 17635 100th Ave. S.W. Restaurant, dairy, eggs, poultry, meat, wine

Langley Fine Gardens Matt & Leda Langley 463-3516 10012 S.W. 268th St. Farm-fresh produce, plant starts

Pacific Crest Farm Jen Parker 463-9002 23720 Dockton Rd. S.W. Farm-fresh produce

Pacific Potager Michelle Crawford 463-2750 27918 Vashon Highway S.W. Plant starts, farm-fresh produce, eggs, flowers

Celina & Joe Yarkin 463-0007 7330 S.W. 248th St. Seasonal farm-fresh vegetables and fruit, eggs

Tahoma View Farm Carolina Nurek 463-7216 4728 S.W. 244th St. Fruit, Asian vegetables, herbs

Timken Farm Mark & Heather Timken 463-1866 16531 Westside Highway S.W. Farm-fresh produce, eggs

Vashon Winery Ron Irvine 567-0055 10317 S.W. 156th St. Wine tastings most Saturdays. Call first.



Spotlight | The Farmers Market

Serving up freshness week after week

Open for tasting Saturdays 2-5 April 1st to October 1st 10317 SW 156th St (206) 567-0055

Ralph Moore Photo

A customer at Sun Island Farm’s stand on a recent Saturday.


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The Saturday’s Farmers Market on Vashon is a lively affair. Musicians regularly perform. Children romp. Baked goods and soups can be had as well as Asian-fusion dishes created by an Island farmer and chef. And of course, fresh fruits and vegetables are in abundance. From early spring to late fall, a parade of produce is available — including greens, salad mixes, leeks, basil, tomatoes, potatoes, beans, squash and more. Other vendors sell eggs, meat, cheeses and chocolates. Crafts, too, abound — from jewelry to handmade brooms to rough-hewn outdoor furniture. During the summer months, there are often cooking demonstrations. And throughout the season, there are special, food-inspired events, including a tomato tasting contest, CiderFest and a pumpkin pie contest. (See the calendar on pages 28-29 for the dates and times of these and other market events.) Vashon’s family farmers are working hard to restore and sustain the Island’s rich agricultural heritage. Meet the men and women behind this important local effort and get tips on preparing the season’s freshest produce.

2010–2011 || DESTINATION VASHON 25

Spotlight | Whales

A special delight:

The return of the whales

By Ann Stateler


slanders share their waters with orcas, gray whales, humpback whales, Dall’s porpoises, harbor porpoises, Steller sea lions, California sea lions, harbor seals and river otters. Point Robinson Park on Maury Island is a spectacular place to have a close encounter with a marine mammal.

Cindy Koch Photo


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The return of fish-eating Southern Resident orcas to the Island is a nearannual ritual. The members of J, K and L pods venture into local waters nearly every fall and winter to feast on chum salmon and have babies. Those of us working with the Vashon Hydrophone Project, which collects data on whales and other marine mammals, discovered a J Pod newborn, J47, off Point Robinson on Jan. 3, 2010 — the first Southern Resident calf of the decade and an auspicious event. These are imperiled animals. In 2006, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, or NOAA, listed Southern Resident orcas as endangered under the Endangered Species Act after conservation groups pushed for the listing. The 89 Southern Residents are vulnerable to a host of ecological injuries — depleted salmon runs, vessel disturbance, underwater noise, oil spills, fat-soluble toxins, disease and global warming. Indeed, scientists say, they face extinction in the next century if we do not confront these threats.

Another kind of killer whale — Transient orcas — has been visiting Vashon in growing numbers over the last decade. These Transients — different from Residents in that they hunt other marine mammals — are also imperiled; Washington state lists them as an endangered species. In spring of 2010, an extraordinary profusion of Transient encounters far surpassed our Southern Resident encounters of the fall and winter. On many spring days, Transient orcas casually dispatched seals and sea lions within view of the Vashon-Fauntleroy ferries. Observant commuters saw a formidable display of hunting skill by Puget Sound’s apex predators. In April 2010, Islanders also reported an unprecedented number of gray whale sightings to the Vashon Hydrophone Project. Whales — ranging in age from recently weaned to adult — wandered into both Quartermaster and Tramp Harbor to forage. Entering bays and harbors is normal for gray whales; however,

some of these whales looked alarmingly thin. Grays are filter-feeding baleen whales: in shallow water, they roll sideways on bottom sediments to suck up small crustaceans, such as ghost shrimp. In my 16 years on Vashon, I have not previously heard of gray whales searching for food deep inside Quartermaster Harbor. Islanders who have lived here for decades were surprised to see large whales rolling around just yards offshore. Since 2004, other marine mammals visiting the Island more frequently are shy, tiny harbor porpoises, endangered humpback whales and endangered Steller sea lions. The Vashon Hydrophone Project collects observational, photographic and acoustic data on orcas and other marine mammals. Because Southern Residents regularly circumnavigate Vashon in fall and winter, the Island is an ideal place to use hydrophones — or underwater microphones — to listen for these iconic creatures. Since 1976, Mark Sears, an associate with the hydrophone project, has photoidentified orcas and other whales, gathering data on their travel, foraging and other behavior. His unparalleled photos capture the majesty of our whale neighbors. — Better known as Orca Annie, Ann Stateler coordinates the Vashon Hydrophone Project and is vice president and education chair of the American Cetacean Society’s Puget Sound Chapter.

Islanders and visitors can support research by promptly reporting whale sightings to the Vashon Hydrophone Project at 463-9041. The VHP

also handles calls about dead, injured or sick marine mammals on Island beaches. Listen to orca calls and learn more about the VHP at www.vashonorcas. org or, the Web site of the American Cetacean Society’s Puget Sound Chapter. The Cetacean Fact Sheets show whales, dolphins and porpoises that visit Vashon-Maury.


Seafood from the Sea to You


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Calendar June


4 First Friday Gallery Cruise. Most galleries open 6 to 9 p.m. Artist receptions. Free.

5 Water Daze. Kayaking, rowing and longboating at Jensen Point. 1 to 4 p.m. Free. 5 Greg Ruby Quartet. Original Gypsy jazz style compositions with violin, guitar, rhythm guitar and bass. 8 p.m. at the Blue Heron. Call 463-5131 for tickets. 11 Dave Peck Trio. Peck is known for his introspective style and rich harmonic coloring. 8 p.m. at the Blue Heron. Call 463-5131 for tickets. 17 Concert in the Park. Vashon’s own Rumor Has It will play rock ‘n’ roll at Ober Park. 7 p.m. Free. 21 The Riptide Ramblers perform at the Village Green. 7 p.m. Free. 24 Concert in the Park. Comic Teresa Tudury performs at Ober Park. 7 p.m. Free. 25 Garden Connoisseurs. Get to know two gardens and their gardeners as part of Vashon Allied Arts’ Garden Tour. 1 to 4 p.m. Call 463-5131 for tickets. 25 Garden Tour Gala. A garden party with dinner and entertainment, part of VAA’s Garden Tour. Call 463-5131 for details. 26 Vashon Island Ultramarathon & Trail Run. Runners can enjoy the trails of Vashon in 50-kilometer and 10-mile races. See 8:30 a.m. beginning at Paradise Ridge Park. 26 Sounds on the Sound. Music for all ages performed at Lisabeula Park. 1 p.m. until dusk. Free. 26 Scott Cossu. An evening of eclectic music on piano and flute. 8 p.m. at the Blue Heron. Call 463-5131 for tickets. 26 and 27 Vashon Allied Arts Garden Tour. Visit five Island gardens. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Call 463-5131 for tickets. 28 Bosnian Blues. They will play at the Village Green. 7 p.m. Free.

July 2 First Friday Gallery Cruise. Most galleries open 6 to 9 p.m. Artist receptions. Free. 2 Oliver Van Olinda Historical Photographs. Van Olinda came to the Island in 1891 and worked as a newspaperman, photographer and author. The show opens July 2 and continues until mid-September. See page 46 for more information. 8 Concert in the Park. Too Slim and the Taildraggers play rocking blues at Ober Park. 7 p.m. Free. 12 Balkan Cabaret at the Village Green. 7 p.m. Free. 10 Lavender Celebration. The Farmers Market will celebrate the aromatic plant in the Village Green. 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. 16, 17 and 18 Strawberry Festival. Vashon’s annual summer festival includes a parade on Saturday, a classic car parade on Sunday, a carnival, music, food, dancing in the streets, a fun run, a beer garden and more. Sponsored by the Chamber of Commerce. See page 66 for more information. 19 Pangeo. They will play Greek melodies in the Village Green. 7 p.m. Free. 22, 23 and 24 Cyrano de Bergerac. A free performance in Ober Park. 7 p.m. 25 Heart of the Sound Triathlon. Swim in the sound, bike and run in the 10th annual triathlon. Events for kids, too. See www. 9:30 a.m. at Jensen Point. 29 Concert in the Park. Craicmoore plays Celtic tunes at Ober Park. 7 p.m. Free. 30, 31 Vashon Island Music Festival. Featuring 24 bands and artists over three days at Paradise Ridge Park. 5 p.m. until dusk Friday and 11 a.m. to dusk Saturday. Continues 11 a.m. to dusk on Sunday, August 1.

August 6 First Friday Gallery Cruise. Most galleries open 6 to 9 p.m. Artist receptions. Free. 7 Vashon Allied Arts Annual World Music Festival. Message from Guinea, an African drumming and dance group; De Cajon Project, a Peruvian music and dance group; and Troupe Hipnotica, a tribal belly dance group, perform. 5 to 8 p.m. at Camp Burton. Call 463-5131 for tickets.

9 Piedmont Blues. The group plays in the Village Green. 7 p.m. Free. 19 Concert in the Park. Incendio returns with its Latin guitars to Ober Park. 7 p.m. Free. 21 Tomato Taste Off. The Vashon Farmers Market invites tomato growers to submit their finest for a community taste test. 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Village Green. 26 Concert in the Park. Vashon Chorale and Portage Phil play a big band special at Ober Park. 7 p.m. Free. 28 Sounds on the Sound. Music for all ages will be performed at Lisabeula Park.1 p.m. until dusk. Free.

September 3 First Friday Gallery Cruise. Most galleries open 6 to 9 p.m. Artist receptions. Free. 3 Art Auction Preview Party. Vashon Allied Arts hosts a party showing what will be up for bid later in the month. 6 to 9 p.m. at the Blue Heron. 24 and 25 Vashon Allied Arts Art Auction. Two evenings of art, food and entertainment in support of Island arts. 6:30 to 10 p.m. Friday and 5:30 to 10 p.m. Saturday. Call 463-5131 for tickets.

October 1 First Friday Gallery Cruise. Most galleries open 6 to 9 p.m. Artist receptions. Free. 2 Robyn Landis and Friends.The award-winning songwriter performs. 8 p.m. at the Blue Heron. Call 463-5131 for tickets. 9 CiderFest, a Harvest Festival. An all-day event featuring a special Farmers Market, Vashon Island Fruit Club’s annual fruit show and sweet cider pressing. Also, a chicken beauty contest, games and music at the Village Green. In the evening, a barn dance at the Open Space for Arts & Community takes place. Tickets available at the door. 16 Rebecca Wittman and Friends. They perform as part of Vashon Allied Arts’ Panache Jazz series. 8 p.m. at the Blue Heron. Call 463-5131 for tickets. 31 Thistle Theatre’s Little Red Riding Hood. Celebrate Halloween with this family event. 2 p.m. at the Blue Heron. Call 463-5131 for tickets. 31 Community Trick or Treat. Island merchants open their shops to trick-or-treaters. Downtown closes to traffic. 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.

November 5 First Friday Gallery Cruise. Most galleries open 6 to 9 p.m. Artist receptions. Free. 6 Panache Jazz Series. 8 p.m. at the Blue Heron. Call 463-5131 for tickets. 7 Vashon Allied Arts Arts & Humanities Lecture. 7 p.m. at the Blue Heron. Call 463-5131 for tickets. 19, 20 Chamber Music Series. Island cellists Rowena Hammill and Doug Davis will be joined by special guests the Messiaen Quartet and Vashon Opera soprano Jennifer Krikawa singing French songs. 7:30 p.m. at the Blue Heron. Call 463-5131 for tickets. 20 Pumpkin Pie Contest. Islanders are invited to bring their pumpkin pies to be judged by an expert panel. 10 a.m. in the Village Green.

December 3 First Friday Gallery Cruise. Most galleries open 6 to 9 p.m. Artist receptions. Free. 3 Holiday Open House and Tree Lighting. Santa comes to town, the tree is lit and merchants keep their stores open for holiday revelers in the evening. 3, 4 and 5 The Nutcracker. Blue Heron’s Dance performs the classic ballet. 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 2 p.m. Sunday. Call 463-5131 for tickets. 4, 5, 11 and 12 Holiday Art Studio Tour. Island artists open their studios to the public. 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. 10, 11 and 12 Vashon Island Youth Chorus Holiday Show. Talented kids perform “A Charlie Brown Christmas.” 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 5 p.m. Sunday at the Blue Heron. Call 463-5131 for tickets.

9 Piedmont Blues. The group plays in the Village Green. 7 p.m. Free. 19 Concert in the Park. Incendio returns with its Latin guitars to Ober Park. 7 p.m. Free. 21 Tomato Taste Off. The Vashon Farmers Market invites tomato growers to submit their finest for a community taste test. 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Village Green. 26 Concert in the Park. Vashon Chorale and Portage Phil play a big band special at Ober Park. 7 p.m. Free. 28 Sounds on the Sound. Music for all ages will be performed at Lisabeula Park.1 p.m. until dusk. Free.

September 3 First Friday Gallery Cruise. Most galleries open 6 to 9 p.m. Artist receptions. Free. 3 Art Auction Preview Party. Vashon Allied Arts hosts a party showing what will be up for bid later in the month. 6 to 9 p.m. at the Blue Heron. 24 and 25 Vashon Allied Arts Art Auction. Two evenings of art, food and entertainment in support of Island arts. 6:30 to 10 p.m. Friday and 5:30 to 10 p.m. Saturday. Call 463-5131 for tickets.

October 1 First Friday Gallery Cruise. Most galleries open 6 to 9 p.m. Artist receptions. Free. 2 Robyn Landis and Friends.The award-winning songwriter performs. 8 p.m. at the Blue Heron. Call 463-5131 for tickets. 9 CiderFest, a Harvest Festival. An all-day event featuring a special Farmers Market, Vashon Island Fruit Club’s annual fruit show and sweet cider pressing. Also, a chicken beauty contest, games and music at the Village Green. In the evening, a barn dance at the Open Space for Arts & Community takes place. Tickets available at the door. 16 Rebecca Wittman and Friends. They perform as part of Vashon Allied Arts’ Panache Jazz series. 8 p.m. at the Blue Heron. Call 463-5131 for tickets. 31 Thistle Theatre’s Little Red Riding Hood. Celebrate Halloween with this family event. 2 p.m. at the Blue Heron. Call 463-5131 for tickets. 31 Community Trick or Treat. Island merchants open their shops to trick-or-treaters. Downtown closes to traffic. 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.

November 5 First Friday Gallery Cruise. Most galleries open 6 to 9 p.m. Artist receptions. Free. 6 Panache Jazz Series. 8 p.m. at the Blue Heron. Call 463-5131 for tickets. 7 Vashon Allied Arts Arts & Humanities Lecture. 7 p.m. at the Blue Heron. Call 463-5131 for tickets. 19, 20 Chamber Music Series. Island cellists Rowena Hammill and Doug Davis will be joined by special guests the Messiaen Quartet and Vashon Opera soprano Jennifer Krikawa singing French songs. 7:30 p.m. at the Blue Heron. Call 463-5131 for tickets. 20 Pumpkin Pie Contest. Islanders are invited to bring their pumpkin pies to be judged by an expert panel. 10 a.m. in the Village Green.

December 3 First Friday Gallery Cruise. Most galleries open 6 to 9 p.m. Artist receptions. Free. 3 Holiday Open House and Tree Lighting. Santa comes to town, the tree is lit and merchants keep their stores open for holiday revelers in the evening. 3,4 and 5 The Nutcracker. Blue Heron’s Dance performs the classic ballet. 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 2 p.m. Sunday. Call 463-5131 for tickets. 4,5, 11 and 12 Holiday Art Studio Tour. Island artists open their studios to the public. 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. 10, 11 and 12 Vashon Island Youth Chorus Holiday Show. Talented kids perform “A Charlie Brown Christmas.” 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 5 p.m. Sunday at the Blue Heron. Call 463-5131 for tickets.



Jeff Webb Photo

Building a fort on the beach provides hours of entertainment.

Vashon Island Golf & Country Club We Want You to Join Us

Realize your dream and follow your passion on Vashon Island

Have your Special Events with us! Vashon Island Golf & Country Club invites businesses, families, and groups to make us your destination for all of your special events, outings, parties, banquets and more. Make your event a fun and memorable one at our beautiful venue with our great food, service, and facilities. From weddings to corporate outings, we have what you need. For more information or to find out more about our new flexible membership options call 206-463-9410

2010–2011 || DESTINATION VASHON 31

Playgrounds abound for the young at heart In the age of endless electronic entertainment and jam-packed schedules, Vashon is truly a place to unplug and take in life’s simpler pleasures. Pick a park or beach, pack a picnic and Frisbee and spend the afternoon playing catch, building sand castles or lying on your back, watching the clouds overhead. With its beaches, woods and parks, Vashon is the perfect playground for kids of all ages. Here are a few ideas.

disc golf course, as well as informal BMX trails. BMX and Disc Golf are free. Bring your own equipment. It’s located at 10500 S.W. 228th St.

Spotlight | Kids

Take a walk in the woods. Enjoy quiet trails through the forests. Vashon has some expansive woods. See pages 11 to 13 for more information.

Go to the park.

Go camping.

Ober Park, at the north edge of Vashon has only one Cindy Koch Photo place to camp (unless town next to the Vashon Library, is an excellent choice and was even Dockton Park’s playground is a great place for kids to burn off energy. you are traveling by once handed the Seattle Weekly’s kayak) — the AYH Reader’s Choice award for Best Ranch Hostel on Cove Children’s Playground. Other play areas include Dockton Park, with Road. Its 10 acres offer a meadow for tent camping, teepees, covered play equipment feet from the beach, and Chautauqua Elementary wagons and private rooms. The hostel borders Fisher Pond’s nature School’s play equipment — a good choice when school is out for the preserve with plenty of hiking trails. summer. The school playground also offers basketball hoops.

Head to the beach.


Vashon has some great choices — north, south, east and west. See the next three pages for some ideas.

Take a dip.

Vashon Sportsmens Club If you enjoy archery, camping, fishing, hunting, shooting, or any other outdoor sport, please come and join us at the V.S.C. We meet the 1st and 3rd Friday of every month at 8 P.M.


The Vashon Pool is open daily and has a curlicue slide, diving board and plenty of pool toys. An afternoon of swimming or a lap swim is just $5. Individual and group lessons are available, too. Call the pool at 463-3787 for more information. The pool is located at 9600 S.W. 204th St. next to the high school. For the brave of heart and those who prefer to take to the open waters, head to Dockton Park and jump off the dock into the water. Locals say it’s the warmest in the Sound.

Go for a paddle. Vashon Kayak Center rents kayaks throughout the summer months. See page 32. Those up for an adventure can paddle to a campsite on the water available only to those who arrive by human-powered craft. Vashon has three such sites, all part of the Cascadia Marine Trail. Visit for more information.

Visit Burton Adventure Recreation Center. There is a supervised skateboard and in-line skate facility, which requires a small fee to participate. The center also includes a nine-hole





9925 178th Ave. SW



Ray Pfortner Photo

Kayakers glide past the Quartermaster Yacht Club in Burton.

Spotlight | Kayaking

The view from the water

Kayaking the waters of Vashon is a great way to explore the Island in the long days of summer, and Vashon Kayak Center at Jensen Point makes it easy to rent a boat for as little as an hour or for days at a time. Beginning and advanced paddlers alike can explore the protected waters of Quartermaster Harbor and enjoy an upclose view of the water’s wildlife as well as some of Vashon’s waterfront homes, beaches and forests. The kayak center, operated by the Vashon Park District, is open Fridays through Sundays Memorial Day through Labor Day as well as by appointment. Paddlers looking for a guided tour are

in luck, with a variety of trips to choose from. Mondays through Wednesdays guided tours of Quartermaster Harbor leave the Jensen Point boathouse at 10 a.m. and return at 3 p.m. Kayakers can experience the beauty of the Island from a different vantage point, see local water birds and maybe a seal or two. Advance registration is required. For those looking for tranquility and a chance to leave all their cares behind, the Moonlight Paddles in Quartermaster Harbor might be the answer. Beginners are welcome. There will be full-moon paddles in June, July, August and September. Guided day trips to Blake Island are

The Vashon Kayak Center is located on the Burton Peninsula at 8900 S.W. Harbor Drive. Daily Rental Rates Single Kayaks Hour — $15 Full-Day — $55 Extra Day — $40 Double Kayaks Hour — $25 Full-Day — $80 Extra Day — $65 For more information, see or call 463-9602.

also a possibility for those looking for a full-day experience on the water. These trips depend on tidal conditions and happen Mondays through Wednesdays with a minimum of four people. They are recommended for intermediate to advanced paddlers, as the round trip is 12 miles with an open-water crossing.

2010–2011 || DESTINATION VASHON 33

Spotlight | Beaches

Grab a towel and a pail Vashon has a few spectacular beaches. Here are three of our favorites. See the next page for a fourth, Point Robinson.

KVI Beach This beach, named for the AM tower that provides not only a radio signal but also a roost site for bald eagles, is a favorite among locals. With its expansive sandy spit and a slowmoving slough, KVI is especially fun for young ones. Dogs are allowed offleash, but visitors are asked to clean up after them. Directions: From town, head south on Vashon Highway. Turn left at S.W. 204th Street. Turn left on Chautauqua Beach Road, then right on S.W. 204th Street. Limited parking is available.

Lisabeula Park A quiet west-facing beach, Lisa-

beula is the perfect spot for evening sunsets and family picnics. It also

boasts a grassy expanse for Frisbee throwing, some picnic tables and restrooms. Dogs are allowed. Directions: From town, head south on Vashon Highway. Turn right at S.W. 204th Street. Turn left on Old Mill Road. Turn right on S.W. 220th Street. Continue down a winding road until you reach the park.

Fern Cove This beach, on the northwest side of the Island, is a birder’s paradise. Two streams empty into the Sound here, creating an expansive mudflat that draws rafts of birds all year long. It’s also the site of the historic Belle Baldwin House, available for rental from the Vashon Park District. Dogs are not allowed. (See page 63 for contact information.) Directions: From Vashon Highway, head west on Cedarhurst Road for two miles. The entrance is on the north side of the road.

Ray Pfortner Photo

Vashon’s sandy beaches delight the young ones.



Gentle Care...Relaxed Atmosphere

Vashon Dental Leif Rasmussen, DDS, PLLC 206-463-3685




Spotlight | Point Robinson

A place rich in beauty

and history

Point Robinson, on the easternmost tip of Maury Island, is a region-wide destination — with its historic lighthouse and white-washed keepers quarters and its long ribbon of driftwood-strewn beach. It is here that some of the best whale sightings take place. Here that Vashon hosts its annual kite day. And here that one can while away the hours on a sunny summer day. The Point Robinson Lighthouse and its adjacent station hold a special place on Vashon. Built in 1885, the station began its life as a fog signal; a light was added in 1887. Because of its picturesque setting and closeness to Seattle, it was a preferred station among keepers and their families, originally tended by a single keeper. In 1897, according to historical accounts, one

VASHON HEALTH CENTER Serving Vashon Since 1972

Dr. Kim Farrell

Dr. Michael Kappelman

Dr. Gary A. Koch

Stephanie Lee, PA-C

Dr. Laurel Kuehl

Dr. Jeffrey T. HansPetersen

Office Hours 9:00 – 5:00 Monday-Friday 9:00 – 4:00 Saturday

Full spectrum Family Practice t Pre-natal care, pediatrics and geriatrics t Participate in most insurance plans including Group Health Cooperative t Medicare and Medicaid accepted t Laboratory and x-ray facilities on-site t 24-hour on-call doctor at 463-3671

Location 10030 SW 210th Street Behind Granny’s Attic 206-463-3671

2010–2011 || DESTINATION VASHON 35 keeper noted that the whistle blew for 528 hours straight and that he had to shovel 35 tons of coal to keep it going. Six years later, in 1903, a second keeper was assigned to the station. The actual lighthouse — a 38-foot tower topped by a cast-iron cupola — was built in 1915 and is considered a twin to the lighthouse at Alki Point. Capt. Joe Wubbold, a retired Coast Guard officer who heads the Keepers of Point Robinson, calls it “a wonderful old lighthouse.” He should know. He’s spent countless hours there, leading people on weekly tours and working with others to restore the keepers quarters, which are now available for rental. It’s a sturdy structure, he said — built on 90 pilings, with walls that are a foot thick. It also boasts a fifth-order Fresnel lens, a beautiful piece of Victorian technology that traveled from Paris to Vashon in 1915 and that could be seen for 12 miles. Kerosene initially fueled it; in 1920, it was electrified. Though now decommissioned, it still holds a special place — sitting on a pedestal and still wired, so visitors can see how it worked. To Wubbold, the lighthouse is a Vashon icon, an emblem of a lifestyle that still exists today. “The continuity of the lens along with the strength of the structure are symbolic of the continuity of the lives of the people on Vashon, the generations that have been here,” he says. If you visit on nearly any Sunday between May and September, chances are you’ll find Wubbold there, hosting tours, chatting up people and waxing poetic about the lighthouse. “It’s the way I’ve chosen to give back to this community,” he says.


206 463-2777

17407 vashon hwy sw (just south of Giraffe)

Marnie Jones Photo

Point Robinson is a favorite place to walk dogs.

Point Robinson: Worth an explore Point Robinson is managed by the Vashon Park District and is open dawn to dusk. Tours of the lighthouse take place between noon and 4 p.m. every Sunday from mid-May to midSeptember. The park also offers delightful vacation accommodations at the two keepers quarters, built in 1919 and beautifully restored. See page 64 for contact information.



When LOVE blooms on Vashon People come to the Island for all kinds of reasons.

A closer look


By Elizabeth Shepherd

most romantic place on earth.


But I’m glad that didn’t happen. I’m glad he chose the Island, because time has proven — at least in our case — that Vashon is not only an easy place to fall in love, it’s also a pretty good spot to keep the home fires burning.

rue confessions time: I wound up on Vashon because I was hopelessly

in love.

My beloved had moved to the Island from Chicago, and one long ago April, I followed him here like a big-eyed puppy dog, leaving a place that still had mountains of crusty black snow piled up on the curbsides to arrive in a lush, verdant place that seemed crazily in bloom and full of possibilities. To be completely honest, though, I was so besotted by romance that my sweetheart could have moved into an abandoned building in downtown Detroit in the middle of winter, and I would have followed him there, too, and found it the

Of course, it’s not the same now — 13 years, two kids and one tiny barking chihuahua later. But there are still places on this Island that send my heart racing and fill me with sweet memories of the good old days, when, as the song goes, “our love was new and each kiss an inspiration.” So if you’d like to kiss on Vashon, too, I have some suggestions for you. Don’t expect a list of the usual spots, though. KVI Beach, Fisher Pond, Point Robinson, the Saturday Market, First

Cindy Koch Photo

Friday art walks, Strawberry Festival, in the woods behind Sound Food while you’re looking for the Bike in the Tree — those are all perfectly fine places to kiss. But I can think of a few better ones. Keep in mind, though, as with all things on Vashon, love here can be kind of weird.

Ferries You may as well start kissing before you get here — that’s what I did. What could be more romantic than standing on the outside deck, surrounded by the churning sea and letting the wind rip through your hair while you gaze into the melty brown eyes of your true love and cruise toward what feels like your own private Island? Keep in mind this is a phase of love that does not last very long, so enjoy it. A time may come, and sooner than you think — some rain-soaked November night when you are on the last leg of an

2010–2011 || DESTINATION VASHON 37 exhausting commute, for instance — that you curse the ferries and think it the most ridiculous thing in the world when you see two idiotic-looking people making out on the outside deck. Then again, you may become so addicted to ferry kissing that you never stop. Give it a try and tell me how it goes. I dare you.

Bunker Trail OK, it doesn’t have to be on Bunker Trail, but if you are truly in love you should move into a beach cabin to really get the ball rolling with your romance. It should be a walk-in, one of those remote places where you have to park far away and schlep your groceries down a narrow, slippery path to get them home. The cabin should have a breathtaking view of the water and mountains, of course, but it should also be slightly rodent-infested, poorly insulated and bone-chillingly drafty during the winter. All the better to bundle up and spend long nights in front of the fireplace together, dreaming about your wonderful plans for the future. Which no doubt will include moving inland, or at least to a place that has an actual driveway where the Terminex truck can pull up properly.

You can find a complete listing of our Vashon Health and Wellness Services on our website www. vashon beachcomber. com

Thriftway When you’re deeply in love, it can seem like you and your beloved are the only two people on earth. To dispel that notion, all you’ll need to do is go to Thriftway at 5 o’clock on a Friday afternoon in July. Believe me, you’ll see that the world has kept right on turning while you were kissing down on Bunker Trail. Which, if you are really in love, will make you want to hurry up with your shopping, and schlep those bags of groceries back down the trail, so you can start kissing again. Granny’s Attic Bear with me, I know this might be a stretch for some of you. But if you want to play house, there’s no better place on earth to start than at Granny’s. This nonprofit thrift store, which supports the Vashon Health Center, has everything you need — cozy blankets, squishy pillows, gently used candles, worn flannel pajamas, pots, pans and plates for those romantic dinners, and bins full of scratchy old Frank Sinatra records to spin sexily in the background.

low prices mean you haven’t made too much of an investment, and you can always re-donate almost everything in your love nest back to the thrift store. But if your affair really takes off, like mine did, Granny’s also has lots of baby gear — adorable little clothes and shoes, bassinets, high chairs, car seats, sippy cups, Little Mermaid picture books and plastic Buzz Lightyear action figures — stuff like that, which is what young love can lead to. And if that isn’t weird, I don’t know what is.

Elizabeth Shepherd

Elizabeth Shepherd is The Beachcomber’s arts editor, a film curator in Seattle and the mother of 11-year-old twins. Between two jobs and two kids, she wishes she could find more time for kissing.

And in case your romance fizzles, as romances often do, no worries. Granny’s

Celebrating 13 Years of Wellness





Quirky Vashon

Ray Pfortner Photos

A few things worth checking out Throw 11,000 souls onto an Island in the maritime Northwest served only by ferries, and strange things evolve over time. So it is on Vashon, home to the bike in the tree, the John Deere Pond and the Portage exercise bikes. Here are a few places you might want to visit, some quirkier than others. The bike in the tree, behind Sound Food on Vashon Highway, has been a curiosity for years. How’d it get there? Turns out Don Puz left it there when he was a kid in 1954. He didn’t like the bike very well, so he ditched it while playing in the woods one day. There it still sits, encased, now, in a fir tree. The exercise bikes at Portage — the isthmus between Vashon and Maury islands — are worth a look. This collection of discarded stationary bikes ebbs and flows over the years. Every now and then, someone grows frustrated with the guerrilla art and carts them off to the dump. New ones quickly crop up. Travel to Maury around Christmas and you’re likely to see a wintertime delight — a tow truck at Engels Repair & Towing outlined by hundreds of colorful lights. Those on the wheels flash, making them look like the wheels are endlessly turning. The John Deere Pond, shaped, of course, like the famous logo on a certain brand of tractors, is another December must-see, when it, too, is outlined in lights — with a big red one for the deer’s nose. It’s found on Cemetery Road. And while not so quirky, certainly delightful is the barn on the corner of Cemetery Road and 87th Avenue S.W., where artist Annie Brulé was commissioned to paint a replica of a 1920 advertisement for “Vashon Chickens.” The vintage white, blue and yellow depiction suggests an earlier era, when this corner of the Island was a 40-acre chicken farm.

Heirloom Coffee ®

The beans we use are rare. They are high mountain shade grown and traditionally farmed. We hand roast on site a combination of traditionally grown, organic, fair trade and direct trade beans to create our fine Heirloom® Coffee. “A crossroad between commerce and neighbors”, the Roasterie remains a destination where family, friends and visitors from around the world meet. The Vashon Island Coffee Roasterie, (and coffee museum) and Minglement “a neighborhood organic grocery store” est. 1979, are located inside this charming 100-year-old building. The building is also home to specialty coffee and fair trade pioneer, Jim Stewart’s original coffee company, The Wet Whisker, which eventually became known as Seattle’s Best Coffee. Recognized as having one of the best palates in the specialty coffee industry, Jim Stewart pointed us in the direction of some of the most rare and finest beans in the world –best known for their outstanding flavor. We are grateful for his mentorship and encouragement and for the opportunity to continue his legacy in the on-going history of this place. We carry on the traditions that Jim, with the help of Peter Larson, Jim’s master coffee roaster, and others created here over 25 years ago. Peter Larson now works with us and we still use the original equipment and hand roast rare coffee beans of legendary flavor that you can feel good about buying. We source coffee beans through The Vashon Island Coffee Foundation. A non profit organization that supports the farmers who grow our coffee. We invite you to visit us at this famous historic coffee roasterie and watch us roast coffee and savor our Heirloom®Coffee and espresso made on a hand lever espresso machine (one of only 3 in use in Seattle). Choose from over 300 high quality bulk herbs and spices and our custom blended teas. Enjoy our very popular sparkling herbal & floral beverages, and explore our selection of healthy organic foods, and natural health products. Learn more about us, who we contribute to and other products available at our website Explore our beautiful custom blended tea selection at • Member of Co-op America • Pastries, Salads, Soup • Organic Island Produce

• Wheat free & gluten free foods • Herbs & Supplements • “Vashon Sister City Coffee”

Located on the corner of Vashon Hwy & Cemetery Road Monday-Friday/7am-5pm, Saturday 8am-4pm • 206-463-9800 For information on where to stay and things to do while on Vashon visit © 2010, Minglement, Inc. All Rights Reserved


*B NUMBERS BELOW ARE IN THE TOWN OF BURTON A BEACH RETREAT 14101 SW Pohl Road . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-5329 BAYVIEW RETREAT 9549 SW Bayview Drive .....................(206) 713-1416 BURTON COMMUNITY CHURCH In Burton on Vashon Hwy SW . . . . . . . . . . . 463-9977 CALVARY FULL GOSPEL CHURCH 13107 SW 220th Street............................... 463-2567 CAMP BURTON ....................................................................463-2512 END OF THE WORLD GUEST CABINS 12311 SW Bachelor Rd .................................463-6232 HARBOR MERCANTILE Burton Store . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-2500 LAVENDER HILL FARM 10425 SW 238th St. ................................... 463-2322 MADRONA MEADOWS BED AND BARN 21828 Monument Rd SW . . . . . . . . . (206) 295-6233 SILVERWOOD GALLERY 24927 Vashon Hwy SW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .463-1722 SWALLOW’S NEST GUEST COTTAGES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 (800) ANY-NEST or 463-2646 TREES OF LEGACY 13005 SW 267th Lane . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .463-1588 VASHON ISLAND UNITARIAN CHURCH In Burton on Vashon Hwy SW . . . . . . . . . . . 463-4775

80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92

HERON ART CENTER 65 BLUE 19704 Vashon Hwy SW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .463-5131 MAURY ISLAND STORE & GARDENS 66 COUNTRY 20211 Vashon Hwy SW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-3655 MERCIFUL SAVIOUR ORTHODOX 93 ALL MONASTERY 9933 SW 268th St. . . . . . 463-5918 PALMER CONSTRUCTION, INC. 67 ED22024 103rd Ave SW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .463-4111 HERON ESTATE 94 BLUE 10157 SW 263rd ST . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .206-402-9999 FRATERNAL ORDER OF EAGLES 68 18134 Vashon Hwy SW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-5477 VISTA B & B 95 CASA 6700 SW Luana Beach Rd. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-4166 CIRCLE WELLNESS CENTER 69 FULL 18017 Vashon Hwy SW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-2945 HILL B&B & RESERVATION SERVICES 96 CASTLE 26734 94th Ave SW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-3556 ISLAND MASSAGE 70 19001 Vashon Hwy SW, Ste #208 . . . . . . . 463-9659 COTTAGE 97 MAURY 5313 SW Pt Robinson Road. . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-4558 CREATURE, LLC 71 MEADOW 18850 103rd Ave SW . . . . . . . . . . . . (206) 408-8080 KEEPERS QUARTERS 98 PT3705ROBINSON SW Pt Robinson Road . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-9602 UNITED METHODIST CHURCH 72 17928 Vashon Hwy SW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-9804 NEST GUEST COTTAGES 99 SWALLOW’S . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 (800) ANY-NEST or 463-2646 DENTAL/LEIF RASMUSSEN, DDS. 73 VASHON 19715 Vashon Hwy SW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-3685 DUCK’S NEST 100 THE 26037 101 Street Place SW . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-2551 VASHON HEALTH CENTER 74 10030 SW 210th Street . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-3671 ISLAND GOLF & COUNTRY CLUB 101 VASHON 24615 75th Ave. SW. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .463-9410 ISLAND COFFEE ROASTERIE 75 VASHON & THE MINGLEMENT

76 77

NOT ON MAP A Better Roofing Company . . . 206-935-1575 Artisan Electric . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-3111 Bob Webster Handyman .................................. (206) 455-4245 Goforth Gill Architects . . . . . . . . . . 463-5222 Healthier Air & Heating . . . . . . . . . 463-4265 J.A. Roofing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-6153 Jeanne Robinson . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-6895 Joanna Gardiner . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 567-0560 Landscape Craftsmen . . . . . . . . . . 463-0817 LaPetite Etoile French School . . . . . 463-2665 Michelle Ramsden, Arborist . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (206) 406-3723 Pascal Py Construction . . . . . . . . . 567-4528 Schmeets Plumbing . . . . . . . . . . . 463-7586 Sound View Services, LLC . . . . . . . 567-4765 Sustainable Tourism on Vashon . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (206) 234-4287 Sutherland Home Inspection . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .(206) 617-1981 Trilogy Homes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-1963 VashonBePrepared Vashon Island Pet Protectors (VIPP) 206-389-1085

19529 Vashon Hwy SW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-9800 VASHON ISLAND COMMUNITY CHURCH 9318 SW Cemetery Road . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-3940 VASHON LUTHERAN CHURCH 18623 Vashon Hwy SW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-2655



1 2 3 4 5 6 7

BELLE BALDWIN HOUSE 11408 SW Cedarhurst Road . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-9602 BETHEL EVANGELICAL FREE CHURCH 14736 Bethel Lane SW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .567-4255 EAGLE HEIGHTS COTTAGE 13528 Vashon Hwy SW. . . . . . . . . . . (206) 304-7188 JOHN L. SCOTT REAL ESTATE 13401 Vashon Hwy SW. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .567-1600 LA PLAYA 10824 Vashon Hwy SW. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 567-0020 NORTHVIEW GUEST HOUSE 104th Pl SW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .463-9181 ST. JOHN VIANNEY CATHOLIC CHURCH 16100 115th Ave SW. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .567-4149

8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15

ARTIST STUDIO LOFT B&B 16529 91st Ave SW. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-2583 CHURCH OF THE HOLY SPIRIT 15420 Vashon Hwy SW. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 567-4488 HARBOR SCHOOL 15920 Vashon Hwy SW. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .567-5955 LAVENDER DUCK INN 16503 Vashon Hwy SW. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-2592 PALOUSE WINERY 12431 Vashon Hwy SW. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .567-4994 VASHON COMMUNITY CARE CENTER 15333 Vashon Hwy SW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .567-4421 VASHON ISLAND RANCH HOSTEL 12119 SW Cove Road . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-2592 VASHON WINERY 10317 SW 156th Street. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 567-0055



GUEST HOUSE 16 MIKO’S See map for location . . . . . . . . . . . . . (206) 679-1389

17 18 19 20 21

57 Ober Park 23 62-63 75

Downtown Vashon


AND ASSOCIATES 22 AMIAD 17500 Vashon Hwy SW. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-4060 BEACHCOMBER 23 THE 17141 Vashon Hwy SW, Suite B. . . . . . . . . . .463-9195 LUNA 24 CAFÉ 9924 SW Bank Road . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-0777 BONITA 25 CASA 17623 100th Ave SW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-6452 26 CHAMBER OF COMMERCE


26 28 54

WEST OF TOWN FOX FARM 17232 107th SW . . . . . . . . . . . . (206) 954-6310 KAREN FOR HAIR 15631 Westside Hwy SW, Studio 2…567-4247 (HAIR) LAST RESORT GUEST HOUSE 19807 Robinwood Road SW . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-5286 VASHON ISLAND HAVURAH 15401 Westside Hwy . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .463-1339 VI HORSE SUPPLY/CEDAR VALLEY STABLES 17710 112th Ave SW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-6430

17205 Vashon Hwy SW, #C-2 . . . . . . . . . . . 463-6217

(206) 463-9195

HOUSE 27 CONSTANTINOPLE 40 LITTLE 17508 Vashon Hwy SW. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-0994 17636 100th Ave SW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-9033 AUTO REPAIR TREE 28 DOUG’S 41 MONKEY 17224 Vashon Hwy SW. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-9106 Just south of Chevron . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-4635 SILKS MAGIC & ESPRESSO 29 DOVA 42 MOVIE 17600 Vashon Hwy SW Suite 112 . . . . . . . . 463-4888 17636 Vashon Hwy SW. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .463-2181 SPORTS 30 DUET 43 NORTHWEST Across from the Pharmacy . . . . 920-7695 or 353-1500 Thriftway Plaza . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-5906 4 BOX 31 ESSENTIALS 44 PANDORA’S 17504 Vashon Hwy SW. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-7706 17321 Vashon Hwy SW. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-3401 OF MIND 32 FRAME 45 PURE 9926 SW Bank Road . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-3933 9925 SW Bank Rd. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .463-1442 GIRAFFE BICYCLE BISTRO & SUSHI 33 174th and Vashon Hwy . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .463-1372 46 RED 17618 Vashon Hwy SW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-5959 GINGER DIAGNOSTIC & REPAIR SERVICE 34 GREEN 47 RICK’S 9851 SW Bank Road . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-7788 9919 SW 178th Street. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-9277 HARDWARE STORE RESTAURANT FURNITURE 35 THE 48 ROBINSON Corner of Hwy / Bank Road . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-1800 17639 Vashon Hwy SW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-3500 NEST ISLAND PUB & PIZZA 36 HERON’S 49 ROCK 17600 Vashon Hwy SW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-5252 17322 Vashon Hwy SW. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-6814 ESCROW SERVICE 37 ISLAND 50 SUBWAY 9929 SW Bank Road #204 . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-3137 17408 Vashon Hwy SW. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-4800 SECURITY SELF STORAGE 38 ISLAND Continued on back… 10015 SW 178th Street. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-0555 HAIR DESIGN 39 JAMES 17414 Vashon Hwy SW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-9942







97th Pl SW


RENTAL CARS, INC. 78 VASHON 9919 SW 178th Street . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .463-RENT SPORTSMEN’S CLUB 79 VASHON 19720 Singer Road SW. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-9440

SW 174th St


Vashon Hwy SW

51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61 62 63 64


TRUE VALUE HARDWARE Thriftway Plaza . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-3852 VALISE 17633 Vashon Hwy SW . . . . . . . . . . (206) 375-5886 VASHON ISLAND BICYCLES 9925 178th Ave SW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-6225 VASHON ISLAND DAY SPA 17233 Vashon Highway SW . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-0587 VASHON ISLAND LIQUOR STORE 17607 Vashon Highway SW. . . . . . . . . . . . . .463-2163 VASHON-MAURY ISLAND HERITAGE MUSEUM 10105 SW Bank Rd.. . . . . . . . 463-7808 VASHON PARK DISTRICT HEADQUARTERS 17130 Vashon Hwy SW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-9602 VASHON PHARMACY 17617 Vashon Hwy SW. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .463-9118 VASHON TEA SHOP 17608 Vashon Hwy SW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-5202 VASHON THRIFTWAY 9740 SW Bank Road. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-2100 VASHON WOMEN’S HEALTH CENTER 17407 Vashon Hwy SW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-2777 WINDERMERE PROPERTY MANAGEMENT 17141 Vashon Hwy SW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-4700 WINDERMERE REAL ESTATE 17141 Vashon Hwy SW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-9148 WINTERBROOK REALTY/VASHON PROPERTY MANAGEMENT 17637 Vashon Hwy SW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 463-5333

100th Ave SW



22 31



60 43


SW Bank Rd




35 55




59 36


58 46 30 52 64



SW 178th St


Post Office





Map not to scale.

Visitors Guide to

Vashon-Maury Island Passenger only Ferry to Seattle Fauntleroy Ferry to West Seattle or Southworth/Kitsap Penninsula

Vashon Point



Map is not to scale

SW Sylva


W d. S

SW 1


lS 87t hP

Chautauqua Elementary

90 Ave S

Heyer Point

Monument Rd SW

Tramp Harbor Dock Public Fishing Pier Tramp Harbor Rd. Portage Tramp Harbor Portage Wy SW Melchert Way SW Deppman Rd SW SW Maury Pk Rd Dockton Rd SW


yS W


75 Ave SW

50 th SW Pl

Luana Beach Lighthouse

SW Pt Robinson Rd 97 90

SW 244 St


Pt. 98 Robinson 245 Park Racoma Beach

Maury Island Regional Marine Park

297 Wy


Pt P Rd Siner W

101 Ave SW


SW 288 Rd

Sandy Shores Dr SW

SW Summerhurst Rd Summerhurst SW 285 St

Piner Pt

129 Pl SW 129 SW 85

Luana Beach Rd

SW 275 St

124 Ln SW

SW 300 Tahlequah Ferry to Tacoma

99 Ave SW 97 Ave




l SW 125 P

129 Pl SW


94 Ave SW




Va s

135 Ave SW wy SW 133 Ave SW

Vashon H

137 Ave SW

141 Ave SW 140 Ave SW 139 Ave SW

142 Ave SW 143 Ave SW

145 Ave SW

n 0 LSW 280 St


ta zani Man Rd SW Bch


hl R



SW 276 St SW 280 St

131Ave SW


Dalco Point

n 6L 26

Spring Beach

Luana Ln SW

Maury Island


SW Spring Beach Rd

79 Ave SW

Dock ton R d SW



143 Ave SW


Burton Acres 81 Park SW 244 SW 97 84 St Ave Shawnee Vashon Hwy SW SW 244 Pl 101 135 Ave SW B82 Rd Magnolia B86 SW Caster Rd SW 249 Ln B89 SW 248 St SW 248 St Wy SW 250 Ln 250 B90 SW 138 Pl SW SW 251 Ln B92 SW 252 Ln 121 Ct SW 255 St 140 SW 86 Pl SW d 120 Ave Bates R 254 Ln SW Windmill St SW Dock St Gold Beach SW Wesleyan Stuckey Ave SW Paradise Dockton Bates Wy Cove Park Walk SW 120 Ln 101 Ln SW 100 SW 260 St SW 101 Pl SW 262 Pl Dr. Harbor ch SW Camp a Dockton e 94 Heights Sealth Rd 264 St ld B SW 263 St Go Pillsbury 265 St SW 264 n L Rd SW 267 Camp 91 Inspiration Sealth 96 SW 268 SW 270 Point SW 270 St 93 SW 274 90 Ave SW B

95 Luana Beach Rd

43 SW

Harbor Dr Jensen Point Boat Ramp SW 236 237 Pl Bayview 90 Dr.

59 Pl SW 60 Pl SW

49 Pl 48 Pl 47 Pl

64 Ave SW

63 Ave SW


99 Ave SW 96 Ln SW Quartermaster 100 Pl SW Harbor Kingsbury Marina Rd SW

SW 228 107 Ave SW

SW 216 St a 88 aster Dr Quarterm


DugwayRd SW


Burton Street Course

Chautauqua Beach Rd SW Ellisport

80 A v SW e


SW 225


or 103 SW ga n Hi ll

107 Ave SW

111 Ave SW 111 Ave SW

SW 212 St SW 216 St

87 SW 238 St

Bicycle in a tree

Vashon High

SW 210 St SW 211 St

115th SW

SW 232 St

198 St

71 Ave SW



SW Klahanie

68 Ave SW

103rd Ave SW

107th Ave SW

115th Ave SW 119 Ave SW

Old Mill Rd SW

131 Pl SW Westsid e Hwy Wax Orchard Rd SW

SW 220th St

SW 240 St

76 McMurray Middle School


Paradise Ridge Park

SW 236 St

SW 192nd St 75 73

SW 184 St



SW 206 Ct

SW 272 Pl

SW 236 St

98 Ave SW 95 Ln SW

115th Ave SW

107th Ave SW W 112th Ave SW

Commons Rd SW 125th Ave SW

Westside Hwy SW

SW 188th 71

SW 208th St

Wax Orchard Airport

91 Ave SW

t 129th Ln Westside Hwy SW

131th Ave SW 131 Pl SW

135 Ave SW

141 Ave Carey Rd SW

SW Be Redd ach ing Rd s

Landers Rd SW

la eu ab Lis

SW 180th St 68 16 SW 183

87 Ave SW

Raymond Rd SW Reddings Beach SW Cross Landing Rd



Christianson Cove

SW 224 St

72 69

See map inset on reverse

er Sop SW Rd

e Rd


SW Lisabeula Rd

SW 204 St

SW 204 St



SW Cemetery Rd 97

er Sing W Rd S

SW Gorsuch Rd

Ober Park SW 174th

(green shaded area)


SW 171st


Downtown Vashon

96 W1

SW Madrona Rd.

Lisabeula Park

Fisher Pond

SW 184

SW 207 Ln

SW 216th St

SW Cove Rd.



Robinwood Beach

11 SW 166th St

SW Glen Landing Rd SW 152nd Ln SW VanOlinda Rd 82nd Pl SW SW Hawthorne Ln 80th Pl SW SW 157 Pl Dilworth Point SW 159 St Shanahan Rd SW 87th Ave SW SW Dilworth Rd 8



Robinwood Rd SW


t 48 S

SW 161th St 10

Vashon Airport

SW Bank Rd

Sunset Beach Sunset Rd SW


Ce d Rd arh . u


119th Ave SW


King County Transfer Station

Agren Park

. Rd

Paige Ln SW


SW 9

SW 148 Pl


ia Ave

Columb SW 166



SW 160 St 7

l 45 P


SW 156th St 15 SW 158th St

SW 156 St

121st Ave SW



SW 151 SW 153 SW 154 20 SW Ober Beach Rd Crescent Dr. SW 19 SW 158 James Point

Bethel Lane SW SW 146

yS 107 Wa


SW 144 SW 148


SW 140 St


Glen Acres

en Gl



Vermontville Rd SW



96 Pl SW 94 Pl SW




SW 132 Pl

Hwy Old W S

Olympic Dr. SW Colvos



SW 133 Pl

SW McCormick Pl

Winghaven Park SW 122 Pl SW 123 Pl

fe Rd. Cunlif

SW Corbin Beach Rd

Bike Loop

Dolphin Point

SW 116th St

Bea SW 125ch th

Vashon Highway

SW Bunker Trail

SW 112th St SW Biloxi Rd 6

Sylvan Beach

Fern Cove

Rd 5

Beall Rd SW

Patten Palisades


Popular Bike Route on Vashon

SW Bachelor Rd Neill Point

See Table of Contents for Park Listings

2010-2011 Vashon & Maury Island Š2010 Vashon-Maury Island Beachcomber

Discover what awaits you on our beautiful island!




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Helpful information

Vashon Chamber of Commerce New in town? Check out the Vashon-Maury Island Chamber of Commerce office, where friendly faces greet people from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesdays through Thursdays and 12:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Saturdays. Get maps, gather information about local shops and find out what’s going on in town that night. The office is located at 17205 Vashon Highway S.W., in the core of town, at Vashon Village, just beyond the brightly painted gazebo. For more information, call the chamber at 4636217 or visit its Web site at www.vashonchamber. com.

In a jam? Need some services? Here are a few things to know. Vashon Island Fire & Rescue 10020 S.W. Bank Road Phone: 463-2405 Emergency: 911 Vashon Island Fire & Rescue is equipped to handle major emergencies and has the cooperation of the ferry system and local medical helicopters. King County Sheriff’s Office Phone: 463-3618 Emergency: 911 The local sheriff’s station is located south of town in Courthouse Square, located at 19021 Vashon Highway S.W. on the south side of the building.

Telephones Public telephones are available at the Vashon Library and Vashon Thriftway. Vashon Library Phone: 463-2069. 17210 Vashon Highway S.W. Restrooms Public restrooms are located in the Village Green, Dockton Park, Burton Acres Park, Ober Park, the Vashon Library and the north-end ferry terminal.

equah.” Vashon Island Bicycles Phone: 463-6225. 9925 S.W. 178th Street. Offers sales, repair, rentals and trail maps.

Tides For information on tides on Vashon, visit, go to “Washington” and click “Burton” or “Tahl-

Post offices There are two on Vashon. The downtown office (463-5134) is located on S.W. 178th Street,

Destination West Seattle: A short ferry ride away The Island is a mere 20-minute ferry ride to West Seattle, a destination for many Islanders who want to take in big-city shopping and events without making the traffic-snarled trek to downtown. With department stores, a mall and more restaurants than you can count, West Seattle is a welcome urban neighbor to the laid-back country atmosphere of Vashon Island. The heart of West Seattle is “the Junction.” At the intersection of California and Alaska streets, the Junction and the few surrounding blocks are home to a thriving retail economy that includes a record store, thrift shops, book stores, a toy store, bakeries, a theater and art galleries. A few miles south is Westwood Village, the closest mall to Vashon. It features department stores, restaurants and momand-pop storefronts.

while the Burton office is in the core of Burton on Vashon Highway. Vashon Island Pet Protectors Phone: 389-1085. They’re the ones to call if you lose your pet on Vashon or would like to adopt one while you’re here.

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Through the eyes of an elder

An Islander remembers a simpler time

Mike Urban Photos

Tom Lorentzen lives in the Norwegian-built home where he was born in 1928.

A closer look

Island Memories

By Amelia Heagerty


ashon’s a veritable mixing bowl these days, with folks from all different walks of life rubbing shoulders in the aisles of the grocery store or at the stalls of the Vashon Farmers Market.

But it wasn’t always like that, lifelong Islander Tom Lorentzen says. There was a time not too long ago when the different neighborhoods of Vashon were separate and unique, each town with its own distinct identity and inhabitants. The Colvos neighborhood, for instance, was a bustling hub of fishing activity, with practically every home in the area housing a Norwegian fisherman and his family, said Lorentzen, 81. Raising chickens and farming berries were common in his neighborhood, he said. Worlds away on Maury Island, the residents of

Dockton were largely Croatian settlers who worked in the thriving shipbuilding industry there. They, too, raised livestock and foodstuffs. Lorentzen, who lives in the Norwegian-built home on Westside Highway where he was born in 1928, says Vashon in the 1930s was a rural place where the kids attended school a few blocks from home in two-room schoolhouses and each small Island community was strikingly different. When Lorentzen attended Columbia Grade School in the 1930s, the first- through eighth-grade school on Columbia Avenue near Cove Road built in 1897 served as the epicenter of his daily life. “When I heard the school bell ring, I could throw on my coat and run up the school trail and be there by the time school started,” he said with a smile. “School was the focus of our whole life.”

2010–2011 || DESTINATION VASHON 45 The Columbia kids had “heard about places like Dockton and Burton,” he said, but had rarely if ever visited them, and certainly didn’t know the children who attended grade schools there. A trip to Vashon town was a treat, and a trip to Seattle was a large production, he said. “In the old days, if you wanted to walk to Vashon, that was a pretty long investment of time,” said Lorentzen, who remembers his trips to town and to the big city fondly. He recalls the layout of the town of Vashon about 50 years ago — with packed dirt roads and businesses with large plate-glass windows displaying their wares. In town, there was a gas station, a Ford dealership, a shoe repair shop, a post office, a tavern and restaurant, a funeral home and two grocery stores. Just yards from the center of town — on what is today Bank Road — fields striped with rows of strawberries were cultivated. Berries were a way of life for those who lived on Vashon decades ago, Lorentzen said. Miles of berry fields once covered the Island’s rolling hills and were Vashon’s greatest export for years. Indeed, to look at aerial photos from that time is to see an Island given over to fields; the forests had largely been logged. Lorentzen recalls spending summers berry picking side by side with Native Americans from British Columbia who traveled to the Island for the seasonal work. Many of the farms were cultivated by Japanese-American families until, in the height of World War II, they were

sent to internment camps. Only some of the berry farmers returned, Lorentzen said. “Every farm was a berry farm,” he said. “That’s where my sister and I The farmhouse where Lorentzen was born. earned our money for ever changing, but somehow remains the school and for clothes. We’d start in May same, he said. with the strawberries early, and move on “When you’re still living in the same to the other berries — loganberries, curhouse where you were born and you were rants, cherries. We could pick cherries sliding around in diapers, when you wake until we were red in the face. ... We’d pick up in the same room where you saw the all summer until school time.” first light of day, it’s something that can’t Some families are new to Vashon, while be replaced,” Lorentzen said. “Nothing others have roots that go back more than would substitute for it. ... Vashon is a a century. Some names have been immorbundle of memories for me.” talized in Island landmarks — like Ober Park, named after John Ober, an Island Amelia postmaster; Raab’s Lagoon, named after Ford salesman Lloyd Raab; and Mukai Heagerty Pond, named after farmer and businessAmelia Heaman B.D. Mukai. gerty is a staff But the sensibilities of the people on Vashon haven’t changed much, Lorentzen said — they’re “good old folks.” Having lived a life on Vashon — except for a few decades in the Army and Seattle — Lorentzen jokes that he’s a man “who didn’t go far in life.” His life is deeply rooted on an Island with an identity that’s

Betty MacDonald, a Vashon legend Though born in Colorado, Betty MacDonald is considered one of Vashon’s native daughters, a beloved figure who immortalized life here with “Onions in the Stew,” her irreverently humorous

reporter at The Beachcomber. She loves hearing people’s stories and uncovering local news in unusual places. She has worked at The Beachcomber since 2007.

take on Island life. Her years on the Island were actually few (she lived on Vashon from 1942 to 1956). But it was here, in a cabin-like home perched above the water on the northeastern shore, that she penned her many books, including her most

famous, “The Egg and I,” and her popular Mrs. Piggle Wiggle series. Those who want to know more about this celebrated author should visit the Vashon-Maury Island Heritage Museum, where one can find displays about her remarkable life.



O.S. Van Olinda: Vashon’s first historian By BRUCE HAULMAN

Oliver Scott Van Olinda (1868-1954), a newspaperman, photographer and Vashon’s first historian, arrived on the Island in August 1891 from his home in Nebraska. And like many of those early settlers, he was awed by the size of the region’s trees and daunted by the density of its coniferous forests. Recalling a walk from Langill’s Landing on the west side up to Center, he wrote: “I came from the great prairies of Nebraska and, as I walked up to Center in the gathering dusk of a mid-August evening, giant fir trees towering three hundred feet above me on either side of the trail in an almost impenetrable wall and flanked by great banks of ferns, the beauty of the

scene was overshadowed by the thought that such environment simply must harbor hoards of bears and catamounts. I marveled at the folly of man, in thinking he could ever convert such material into a farm, a garden, or even a home. It was truly a stupendous task to contemplate.”

But convert he did, building a home — “The Ram Pasture” — that still stands on S.W. Van Olinda Road above Glen Acres. Van Olinda was a pivotal force on Vashon. He edited the first newspaper on Vashon, “Island Home,” in 1892, and was an original faculty member of Vashon College that same year, where he taught stenography. He also edited “The Vashon Island Press,” the Island’s second newspaper, from 1895 to 1897. He moved to Stanwood, north of Everett, in 1897, where he edited “The Stanwood Press” for three years. In 1900, he moved to Coupeville on Whidbey Island and edited yet another newspaper, “The Island County Times.” But Van Olinda wasn’t done with Vashon. He returned to the Island in 1910, and began working as a photographer and writer — providing what has become

This summer, Island photographer Ray Pfortner is curating an exhibit of Van Olinda’s photographs. The exhibit opens on Friday, July 2, at the Vashon-Maury Island Heritage Museum and will remain on view until mid-September. The museum, located at 10105 Bank Road S.W., is open from 1 to 4 p.m. on Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays. For more information about the Island Heritage Museum, visit www. Van Olinda’s extensive collection of photographs is a part of the University of Washington Libraries Special Collections and is available to view on the University of Washington Digital Archives Web site at http:// some of the best documentation of early20th century life on Vashon. Then, in the early 1930s, he began to write his “History of Vashon-Maury Island,” published in 1935 and, to this day, the most comprehensive early accounts of life on the Island.

Van Olinda served for 18 years as historian for the Vashon Pioneer and Historical Society, which was formed in 1923. In 1927, the organization was renamed The Vashon Pioneer Society, and on Nov. 11, 1927, the society erected a monument to the first Euro-American settlers on the Island at the foot of what In his own words ... is now called Monument Road. The monument was dedicated “Familiarity, made possible by improved 63 years after the first permatransportation facilities, has given us the nent settler, Matthew Bridges, opportunity to recognize … that whatever is came to Vashon Island and good for one part of our [island] is, indirectly 50 years after the Shermanperhaps, good for all.” Gilman-Price extended family — Van Olinda, noting the change from settled here.

Vashon’s isolated communities to a more unified island community.

— Bruce Haulman is a Vashon Island historian.

2010–2011 || DESTINATION VASHON 47 Buildings marking Vashon’s early settlement can be found across the Island. At the main intersection of town, The Hardware Store Restaurant occupies a building that housed the first store on Vashon — a hardware store, built in 1890.

Courtesy Photo

“Piano Row” — so called because these were the homes of those well off enough to afford a piano — still stands in Dockton

An Island rich in history Vashon’s colorful history can be found on the back roads of the Island, in the buildings that dot the town and, of course, at the Vashon-Maury Island Heritage Museum, which bears witness to the generations of rugged souls who have made this Island home.

Vashon was first inhabited by S’Homamish Indians, ancestors of today’s Puyallup Tribe and other Puget Sound Salish people who lived off the Island’s bountiful shellfish, salmon and wildlife. Capt. George Vancouver, who first set eyes on the Island during his famous 1792 expedition, named it after his commander, James Vashon, a British officer in the Royal Navy.

One block farther south is the Vashon Theatre, constructed in 1947 in an Art Deco style. A couple miles down the highway is the Blue Heron Arts Center, a former Odd Fellows’ hall, built in 1912. And in Burton, the Silverwood Gallery occupies the still-active Burton Masonic Hall, built in 1894 for the Woodmen of the World, another fraternal organization. Vashon also boasts two back roads identified by King County as “historic and scenic corridors.” The Dockton Road Heritage Corridor begins at Portage, where Vashon and Maury connect, and leads to the historic waterfront community of Dockton. And the Cedarhurst Road-Westside Highway Heritage Corridor on Vashon’s northwest side wends through a farming area settled by Norwegian immigrants in the 19th century.



Heritage barns:

a story of Island life

Ray Pfortner Photo


arns tell a story, says Islander and historic preservationist Holly Taylor.

They speak to our connection to the land, she says. The way they’re built — hand-crafted or from a kit, Europeaninfluenced or not — says something about our heritage and much about our past. And on Vashon, she said, barns are particularly interesting. They’re small and intimate, reflecting a subsistence-farm culture far different from the large-scale dairy farming of, say, the Skagit Valley. Some were built from hand-hewn timber, others with lumber milled at nearby mills. “Our barns tend to be connected to family farms — not the big industrial farms,” she said. Designed to fit the Island’s sometimes steep topography, many of these barns sit snug on the land. Few were built by kits, she added, a popular way in the early part of the 20th century to build a barn. “Sears had a barn book. You could

order the entire thing,” she said. “That never happened here. We didn’t have access to the transportation system.”

walk past, remember these barns sit on private property — and respect the owners’ privacy.

Julie Koler, preservation officer for the King County Historic Preservation Program, noted the “amazing little family farms with two-cow barns” that once dotted Vashon and Maury islands. “There were scores of them all over the Island, many of them on the west side,” she said. The ones that remain, she said, “are the last remnants.”

The Hofmeister Barn in Paradise Valley is the largest documented barn on the Island. Built in 1910, this high-gabled, timber-frame barn was built on property homesteaded by German immigrants in 1884. Known today as the Tucker Barn, after its owners Bob and Laurie Tucker, the structure is located at 10718 S.W. 216th Street. The Tuckers, with the support of a King County grant, have “done some really nice work on it,” Taylor said.

According to Taylor, the Island boasts about 25 barns old enough to be eligible for the Washington Heritage Barn Register. A few of them have been beautifully restored in recent years — some with funds provided by a special King County grant program. Many are tucked behind homes or down long private roads; others are prominent features on the landscape — proud icons of Vashon’s agrarian past. Here are a few that can be viewed easily from the road. But if you drive, cycle or

The Kvisvik-Martindale Farm in Colvos has the most impressive chicken houses remaining on the Island. Visible from S.W. 156th Street or 119th Avenue S.W., the chicken houses were built in the 1920s. The larger of the two is an impressive 110 feet in length. In the early 20th century, chicken ranches were a critically important part of the Island’s economy, with hundreds of family farms producing millions of eggs and chickens for market.

2010–2011 || DESTINATION VASHON 49

Cindy Koch Photo

The Daffodil Barn on Wax Orchard Road between marijuanasmoking hipLaurie Tucker Photo pies and guntoting sheriffs. The Hofmeister Barn in Paradise Valley is the Island’s largest. Current ownNo description of Island barns would ers have constructed a new generation of be complete without homage to the origiJesus Barns on the property to keep the nal Jesus Barn on S.W. 204th in Paradise memories alive. Valley, a charming, gable-roof structure The Daffodil Barn, built in the 1970s, so-named because the word “Jesus” was inscribed across it in the 1960s. The barn, is not as old as it looks — but it, too, is beloved and speaks of the Island’s history. which collapsed several years ago, has taken on a mythical role in Island cultural Located at 25407 Wax Orchard Road, the barn was once part of a daffodil farm. history: It was the scene of Woodstockinspired music festivals and stand-offs — Leslie Brown

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Leslie Brown Photos

Vintage dishware can be found at Granny’s Attic, left, and Vashon Vintage.

Good deals are plentiful at local thrift shops

Though Vashon is an Island of only 11,000 people, it’s home to a booming secondhand retail sector, boasting seven thrift stores specializing in everything from clothing to home decor. Screaming good deals can often be found at one of the Island’s thrift shops. • Duet is located across the street from Vashon Pharmacy. • Granny’s Attic, a nonprofit thrift shop a mile south of town at 10010 S.W. 210th St., is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. 463-3161. • Lost and Found, at 23832 Vashon Highway S.W. in Burton, is open until 5 p.m. or later every day. 463-2668.

G o f o r t h ARCHITECTS Gi ll

• Luna Bella’s, at 17411 Vashon Highway S.W., is open 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday to Friday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday. 463-2668. • Treasure Island, across from Vashon Theatre in Vashon town at 17722 Vashon Highway S.W., is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. every day. 463-2083. • Vashon Vintage is located at 17123 Vashon Highway S.W. at the north end of town. 567-4477.


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• Wendy’s Weather’d Wear, at 17205 Vashon Highway S.W., is open 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday to Saturday and noon to 4 p.m. Sunday. 463-1515.

2010–2011 || DESTINATION VASHON 51

A closer look


The quiet days of winter carry a special joy.

Even in the cold, Islanders know how C to have fun

By Susan McCabe

ome April, it’s easy to spot the people who’ve wintered on Vashon. Their skin is mushroom gray, their noses are running a steady trickle, and their matted fleece vests haven’t had a laundry break in months.

Wintering in the Northwest can be a challenge. Even so, there are delights to be found in the gray days of winter — especially on Vashon, where those quiet days provide an opportunity to discover the Island’s unique charms. It’s no secret that this is a place that attracts writers and artists of all stripes — creative types who appreciate the sleepy hamlet Vashon becomes when summer residents and the sun abandon our beaches. Here on Vashon we make our own sunshine. Some might think all that darkness is a bad thing, but those long, dark nights are candy to the creative soul. Winter here is a time to hibernate with one’s muse — writing, painting, reading. In fact, painters move to Vashon for the winter light — or the strange purple lack of it. We may not have aurora borealis, but we have more shades of gray than you can count, and the wind moves those shimmering palettes across the hilly landscape almost as fast as the eye can blink. Stay in one spot for a day during a Vashon winter, and you’ll see pink dawn move into mauve mist, from there to a steel-green rain squall or a hail and ice storm, then a warming melt into a mild gully washer. All this can happen in one spot or on a

Leslie Brown Photo

A little girl gets a tow in a laundry basket on a frozen Fisher Pond. single drive from the Island’s north end to the Tahlequah ferry. Painters love this. And do you wonder why we’re an Island of writers? What better atmosphere than

short, dark days to move inward to the vast landscape of the imagination? Vashon has spawned poets, mystery writers, comic and serious novelists, playwrights



and more. This is the perfect place to hole up with your favorite scribing instrument and create. Many of us write about our dreams — and why not? There’s so much sleep time, creating rich stockpiles of material from the subconscious. Some of our artists spend winter testing their work here. Vashon Islanders are renowned consumers of the arts, and their voracious appetite only grows in the dark. Nary a winter weekend passes without a Drama Dock or high school theatrical production, top-notch theater at accessible prices. Vashon Allied Arts brings world-class musical, comic and theatrical performers to its Blue Heron stage, often twice a week. The Island’s Open Space for Arts & Community, affectionately known as “O,” has added mega-dimension to the Island’s winter event options, with specials like author Berkeley Breathed doing a holiday reading of his Vashon-centered “Red Ranger Came Calling.” Open Space often accommodates the Island’s winter village spirit by hosting homegrown storytelling and music-making. Voice of Vashon’s answer to “A Prairie Home Companion,” called “Church of Great Rain,” offers new music and fresh comedy throughout the wet winter. Open Space also opens its doors to a range of invented productions — flea markets, recycled fashion shows, roller derbies and cabarets, to name a few. All winter long the Island’s galleries, bookstores, restaurants and cafés take advantage of our diverse artist population with free book readings, musical performances, theater and visual art displays. As art flourishes, Island audiences reward visiting and local performers with lavish response. While making and appreciating art are popular Island community pastimes in winter, our own natural delights take on new form. The holidays give license to turn routine actions into full-blown events, such as the holiday lighting of the town’s tallest tree in Ober Park at Vashon’s center. Heroes from the fire department spend weeks scaling the tree with hundreds of feet of LED lights behind them, carefully draping the lights over the fir’s arching branches. Then on the first Friday

Robert Teagardin Photo

The Red Bicycle is one of several spots for a cup of cheer on a cold winter’s day. in December, a bit of magic happens: Someone flips the switch and the tree lights up, revealing hundreds of children and adults blanketing the grass who break into a chorus of “O Tannenbaum.” Santa makes an appearance. A parade takes place. The town center closes to traffic. Yup, all this on one cold winter night. Another epic winter event is less predictable — the freezing over of Fisher Pond a mile or so from the town center. When it happens — and more winters than not, it does — the shallow pond is transformed: Adults, children, even dogs take to the sheet of ice. Pick-up hockey matches spring up. Figure-skaters appear, seemingly out of nowhere. Some glide across the ice; others wobble. And here’s the magic of this Mother Nature-inspired event: No skates are required. Vashon angels — a couple of skating aficionados — bring dozens of pairs to the pond’s edge. It’s not unusual for a little beach life in the winter time: A driftwood fire can grow into a brisk community barbecue, holiday or not. Record low tides turn our beaches into natural wonders, and nary a winter passes but that there’s a moonlit low-tide walk, led by brilliant beach naturalists. Winter also opens our many trails to a different light when the maple trees shed their leaves in the forest, leav-

ing golden sun colors on its floor and a breathtaking surprise for hikers. Vashon is known for its propensity to make anything into a party, and maybe we have winter to thank for that. We can also thank winter for quiet times, alone or with family, soaking up the heat of a fireplace after an afternoon on the trails, chasing the family dog, riding a fuzzy horse or simply squeezing the inevitable winter paralysis out of resistant muscles. To everything there is a season, and winter on Vashon is the season of quiet nourishment. Done right, it’s an opportunity to store the energy reserves needed to meet summer’s frenzy with gusto.

Susan McCabe

Susan McCabe is a writer and performer who stays warm in the winter by stacking wood and walking her energetic dog. She also works as the program coordinator for the Vashon Park District.

2010–2011 || DESTINATION VASHON 53

A winter tradition: Oscar Night, when the stars come out One winter night on Vashon is more fabulous than the rest. The Academy Awards ceremony, which takes place the last Sunday in February, marks one of the largest annual fêtes on the Island. Held at Vashon Theatre, the Oscar Night celebration is a chance for movielovers to dress to the nines — or, alternately, in their comfiest pajamas — and revel in the movie industry’s most famous awards ceremony. Vashon’s only red carpet is rolled out for the occasion, and a vintage limousine is rented out to cart people to and from the event in style. The theater serves food and beverages, and contests are held for best dressed patrons of all ages, best award winner guessers and more.

The affair is a star-studded one, with much of Vashon’s high society glammed up for the event in tuxes and luxurious evening gowns, and paparazzi greeting red-carpet guests with flash bulbs and microphones. Even Island children enjoy the evening, though a few have been known to catch some Zs before the “Best Picture� winner is announced.

So, if you’re looking for some winter fun and want to be treated like a star, consider Vashon Theatre on the last Sunday of February — a destination where one can see and be seen by the Island’s fabulous people. At right, two finely dressed Islanders take the stage to receive their “bestdressed� awards at the 2009 Oscars.

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VASHON UNITED METHODIST CHURCH 7BTIPO)XZ48t10#PY 7BTIPO 8" Sunday School - 9 a.m. Sunday Worship - 10:30 a.m. Summer Sunday Worship - 9:30 a.m. (Mid-June to Labor Day) Religious Study - Tues. 6:30 p.m., Wed. 11:00 a.m. Pastor: Rev. Darryn Hewson Web site: Phone: (206) 463-9804

9933 SW 268th St (south of Dockton) SUNDAYS: DIVINE LITURGY 10 a.m. – followed by Potluck – Visitors Welcome – Web site: Call 463-5918 For gift shop hours, call the monastery 14736 Bethel Lane S.W. Sunday School - 9 a.m. Sunday Worship Service - 10 a.m. Sunday Children’s Church, Young Life, AWANA 1BTUPS#PC(FOU[FMt8PSTIJQ%JSFDUPS$BNJ-VOEFFO Youth Pastor: Gregg Bernheisel Web site: Phone: (206) 567-4255 E-mail:

BURTON COMMUNITY CHURCH 23905 Vashon Hwy S.W. Sunday Service - 11 a.m. Reverend Marcus Walker (206) 463-9977


BU-JTBCFVMBt48UI4U Worship Service - 10:30 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. Saturday Prayer - 10 a.m. & 7:30 p.m. Home Meeting Thursday 7:00 p.m. Pastor: Steve R. Sears 1IPOF   DIVSDI t   QBTUPS


EPISCOPAL CHURCH OF THE HOLY SPIRIT 15420 Vashon Highway S.W. Sunday Services: 7:45 a.m. and 10:15 a.m. Religious Exploration and Childcare – 9 a.m. Wednesday Mid-week Eucharist - 12:30 p.m. Web site: Phone: (206) 567-4488 E-mail:


15401 Westside Hwy. S.W. Serving the spiritual, social, and intellectual needs of Vashon’s Jewish community Saturday Morning Torah Study 9:30-11:00 am Every fourth Friday night of the month is a guest speaker series at 7:15 pm Monthly potluck every second Friday night of the month. Please check our website for an update on the current calendar of services & activities. President: Louise Olsen Web site: Phone: (206) 463-1399

16100 115th Ave SW P.O. Box 308 Vashon, WA 98070 Anticipated Sunday Mass, Saturday - 5 p.m. Sunday Masses - 8:00 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. Phone: (206) 567-4149 E-mail:

VASHON LUTHERAN CHURCH 18623 Vashon Hwy S.W. P.O. Box 2930 Vashon, WA 98070 Sunday Service - 10:30 a.m. Nursery attendant available Pastor: The Rev. Bjoern E. Meinhardt The Rev. Jeff Larson, Ph.D. Web site: Phone: (206) 463-2655 E-mail: VASHON ISLAND COMMUNITY CHURCH 9318 S.W. Cemetery Road Sunday School - 9:00 a.m. Sunday Service - 10 a.m. Sunday Children’s Church and Nursery Call about Adult Education Pastor: Frank Davis Web site: Phone: (206) 463-3940 E-mail:


23905 Vashon Hwy S.W. P.O Box 1127 Vashon, WA 98070 Community, Diversity, Freedom of Belief, Enrichment of the Spirit Sunday Services - 9:30 a.m. Mid-September through Mid-June Religious Exploration for Children and Youth Web site: Phone: (206) 463-4775 E-mail:

VASHON FRIENDS WORSHIP GROUP P.O. Box 1501 Vashon, WA 98070 (call for location) Sunday Silent Worship Service - 10 a.m. Phone: (206) 567-5279 E-mail:

2010–2011 || DESTINATION VASHON 55

It’s a dog’s world

Dogs have fun on Vashon, too. Our canine friends are allowed to be offleash — but they must always be under voice command — at several Vashon parks, preserves and beaches. KVI Beach is a favorite spot for a romp with the dog. (For directions, see page 33.) For those who want to enjoy the woods with their dog, consider Island Center Forest (see page 12 for directions) — a 363-acre expanse of woodland trails. But there’s much to consider if you choose to have your dog off-leash. Pooches can easily get lost in a place like Island Center Forest. Equestrians use these wooded trails, and their horses can get spooked by a dog. And at a beach, an uninvited wet dog can ruin a picnic. So please keep your dog under control. And always clean up

Rondi Lightmark Photo

Gina Simpson Associate Broker 206.595.5263 Serving Vashon and West Seattle ‘Local presence. International recognition’ DANFORTH & ASSOCIATES, inc.

Heard the Vashon Hum? Go to

Tasha Owen Photography

after your pet. Some parks have plastic bag dispensers to make the job a tad easier.

Marnie Jones Photo

For Open Garden/U-pick dates, visit us at:



The view from a bike

How to really get to know the Island

A closer look


By Dan Chasan


and the smell of blossoms hangs in the air. Monkey Tree co-owner Adam Cone tells me that when he was first on the Island, riding his bike to bake at the old Sound Food before dawn, he looked forward to that smell. It was too dark to see the trees, but he always knew where he was.

A mile farther east, I pass a tangle of volunteer plum trees crowding the road. In spring, white petals litter the pavement,

I once read a book about horses in which the author argued that horses aren’t very bright, but they remember — and never forget — exactly where good or bad things happened to them years ago. This is evidently not a trait unique to horses. Below the point at which I see sunlight streaming through the trees, I always look up at the spot where, years ago, I stopped my bike and watched three pileated woodpeckers, high in the branches, work out some kind of ménage à trois. Above the plum trees, I remember exactly where I hit black ice one winter, not realizing the morning was that cold — nothing was frozen on the west side, where I live, or at

s I pedal up the last steep curve, I see sunlight streaming through the firs. The sun always does this on a clear spring or summer morning. Sometimes, you can see rays streaking through the morning mist, and it’s like being in a 19th-century landscape painting. The light would make this climb worthwhile even if I hadn’t pedaled through the music of song sparrows hidden in the blackberries down below.

Peter Ray Photo

the top of the hill — until I and my bike were sliding sideways across the pavement. And then there’s the uphill curve where my neighborhood drug dealer ran into me from behind. He was very upset. “I just looked up,” he said, “and there you were.” That seemed to raise a question that I didn’t have the presence of mind — my bike had just been knocked out from under me — to ask: Just where had he been looking before that? Of course, even if he’d been looking he might not have seen me. Whenever I pass the intersection at the top of the long airport hill, I remember the guy in the SUV who stopped, looked, and started to pull out right in front of me. I yelled at him. It was a summer morning. His windows were down. He heard me and stopped. Then he apologized. “I’m sorry,” he said. “I didn’t see you.” I was riding a red bike

Vashon Maury-Island Parks and their Amenities Agren Memorial Park Burton Acres & Jensen Point Burton Adventure Rec Ctr. Fern Cove Fisher Pond Inspiration Point Lisabuela Lost Lake (boat only) North End Boat Ramp Ober Park Paradise Ridge Park Point Robinson Lighthouse Spring Beach (boat only) Tramp Harbor Dock V. Commons/School Campus Vashon Fields (VES) Village Green Wingehaven (walk-in only) Vashon Park District offices are located in the Ober

beach access


Park Community Center, 17130 Vashon Highway SW.


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Visit our web site

You can find a digital version of this publication at our website








Don’t have a bike? Rent one. Vashon Island Bicycles, located near the Post Office at 9925 S.W. 178th Street, rents bikes by the hour or the day. It’s also a great place to get route suggestions, repair a tire or pick up supplies. Visit its Web site at A popular Island ride that nearly circumnavigates Vashon extends from the north-end ferry dock to the Tahlequah dock on the south end. Find a map of the route in the centerspread. down the middle of the road in broad daylight. But I believed him. You don’t see what you’re not looking for. And even on Vashon, a lot of drivers aren’t looking for bicycles. Vashon is certainly a more benign place to ride than most — despite the fact that no road but the main highway has much in the way of paved shoulders, and even along the main highway, the shoulder may

be blocked by parked cars, littered with broken glass, torn up for a utility project. Here, as elsewhere, there are drivers who obliviously open doors as you’re riding by or who turn right directly in front of you. You can be riding in the center of the lane and signal a left turn only to have a driver coming up from behind — and, no doubt, eager to reach the stop sign just up the road — cross a double yellow line to pass you on the left. Yes, I experience road rage here. But — unlike some days riding in the city — that’s not all I experience. A pair of mallards flies up from a roadside ditch, wet ferns glisten in a ravine, some driver who knows me gives me lots of room and a big wave, and I forget to be angry. I’ve been leaving my Jamis Ventura road bike home lately and riding my wife’s Raleigh C40 hybrid. She bought it used from Jeff at Vashon Island Bicycles with a thick foam-rubber seat covered in white fleece. She kept the seat. I’m probably less self-conscious than I should be about riding it. Certainly, perched on a seat like that it’s kind of hard to cultivate a road warrior image — which, given my age

and lack of speed, would probably be a dubious style choice anyway. I’d probably be even more self-conscious if I showed up on a really fancy bike. Some years ago, I rode to town on a wet morning, leaned my bike against the side of a building, out of the rain, and went into a café for a cup of coffee. Inside, a short, wiry old guy was sitting alone in the room, drinking coffee. He got up, walked over to the window and looked at my bike. Then he went back to his table and started talking. He thought all those gears on some modern road bikes were ridiculous, just a marketing gimmick. No one needed all those gears. He himself had raced bikes in England back before World War II. When he started — which must have been the late 1920s — everybody rode bikes with single, fixed gears. Before a race, you’d walk the loop course, see how hilly it was and choose a gear. Then you’d bolt it on and ride it for the next 12 hours. People were tougher in those days. I agree that most bikes have more gears than anyone needs — just as most word-processing programs have

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2010–2011 || DESTINATION VASHON 59 more features than anyone needs — but I don’t think I’d want to ride Vashon on even a modern fixed-gear bike. You can’t ride onto the Island without climbing a hill, and you can’t cross the Island without climbing, either. I know this deters some people from getting started. If you just ride somewhere flat, where can you really go? Good question. The terrain can create wardrobe problems, too. You may be cold starting out, but once you start climbing, you may have to decide whether to stop and peel off a layer or get to the top all sweaty. For me the choice sometimes depends on where I’m going. If I’m heading to a meeting in Seattle, all sweaty isn’t usually my preference. But then, if I’m cutting the ferry time a little close, I figure the other people at the meeting will just have to take their chances. I could always drive, of course. Sometimes I do. But if I drive to town or to the ferry on a morning like this, I miss the air, miss the light, miss the physical process of pedaling there. I’m comfortable, relaxed, warm inside the car. But I invariably think damn, I should be on my bike.

Dan Chasan

Dan Chasan has lived most of his life on the west side of Vashon. He is a writer, lawyer and school board member who also serves on the board of Vashon’s Heart of the Sound Triathlon.

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A peek


Lesley Reed Photo (above) / Ray Pfortner Photo (right)

The dank world underneath the north-end ferry dock is a favorite spot to explore for marine life.

A closer look

Marine Life

By Lesley Reed


ool!” “Eeeewww!” “What is it?”

A herd of 8-year-olds runs across the wet sand, stomping their feet beside pockmarks as big as silver dollars and shrieking as plumes of water spray them. Three feet below them, horse clams and geoducks are bunkered down. Each time an “earthquake” is set off, they pull their long siphons down, forcing water up and out. There are 51 miles of shoreline on Vashon-Maury Island (more than half of the marine shoreline found in King County), but at a good low tide, you’ll usually find me in one place — under the north-end ferry dock. That’s where I’ve heard the most squeals, stumbled on the

most unusual animals and encountered Vashon’s most famous visitor. Puget Sound is rich with intertidal marine life, those highly specialized creatures that make their living on the water’s edge and find ways to stick it out when the tide leaves them exposed. Think hermit crabs, sea stars (formerly known as starfish) and clams. Look closer and you’ll find so much more. Hundreds of species have found their niche in an interlocking puzzle that is endlessly fascinating. Take the perfectly named sunflower star — a miracle of arms (24!) flaring off a soft red body that can grow as big as a car tire. Or the equally well-named moonsnail, with its whorl of a white shell bigger than your fist. When filled with water, the moonsnail’s body emerges from its shell to form a startlingly huge muscular foot, which propels it through the sand like a

miniature sand-plow. Exposed or frightened, it forces the water out of its body, retreats inside its shell and shuts a miniature door behind it. You’re likely to find both of these creatures under the dock. At minus tides you can walk deep under the dock, where you’ll find yourself in a forest of sea stars. Brilliant orange and purple five-leggers cling to the posts that hold up the dock, hugging each other in dog piles. You may also see plumose anemones. Out of the water, these look like stretched-out water balloons dangling from posts. When the tide lifts them back up, they turn into flowers. During super low tides (-3 to -4 feet), creatures that are exposed only two or three times a year are revealed. This is when I’ve stumbled on my most remarkable finds. A clutch of squid eggs — each one as long as my thumb and a translu-

2010–2011 || DESTINATION VASHON 61

Beach etiquette: Watch where you step Don’t take animals from their homes (they are picky about where they live). Lift rocks gently and put them back the way you found them. Critters living under the rocks will die if left exposed, while those that live on top (like barnacles) will die if left upside down. Watch where you step. Try to

Ray Pfortner Photo

without the skin) recoils. A whole different menu of marine life shelters in the rocks. During the lowest tide of the last decade, on a field trip with 60 first-graders, one sharp-eyed child even found a baby giant Pacific octopus.

Discoveries take place during the Island’s low tides. cent white — and a frosted nudibranch, a fabulous feathery creature that’s only an inch long. Don’t limit yourself to the world of the dock, however. Follow the beach west, past an eelgrass bed (a nursery for salmon) to the rocks. The 8-year-olds are already there, lifting boulders and hollering as an eel-shaped crescent gunnel flaps wildly, green shore crabs skitter for cover and a sea cucumber (something like an oozing sweet potato

But don’t just hunt for the unusual. Even the most ordinary creatures can surprise. Look for barnacles on rocks just under the lip of the water — they’ll open their stone-house roofs and send out wispy feet, as delicate and curly as eyelashes, which they use to sweep for food. It was on a beachcombing day that I first saw the baby orphaned orca whale that became Vashon’s cause célèbre. After her mother died, Springer became separated from her pod and swam the wrong way — south into Puget Sound instead of

north to Canada where her pod resides. Vashon’s great rumbling ferries were the closest thing she could find to family, so she decided to stay. For six months she endeared us with her friendliness, thrilled us with her breaches and caused many of us to worry about her health and long-term prospects. Happily, she was successfully returned to her pod in Canada. But on a lucky day, you can still see her kin — pods of orcas skirting Vashon on fishing expeditions and playing off our shores. The north-end beach, alas, is only accessible at low tide. Fortunately, there are still other beaches accessible any time of day — Point Robinson, Lisabeula and KVI are three Island favorites. Whatever beach you wander, remember to follow good beach etiquette (imagine if someone lifted the roof off your house!) and keep your eyes open for surprises.

Lesley Reed

The lowest tides of summer Late spring and summer boasts the lowest daytime tides of the year, a great time to go for an explore. Here are some dates and times to consider: 11:30 a.m., Saturday, June 12: -3.2 feet 12:14 p.m., Sunday, June 13: -3.5 feet 12:59 p.m., Monday, June 15: -3.4 feet 11:12 a.m., Sunday, July 11: -3.3 feet 11:57 a.m., Monday, July 12: -3.4 feet 12:43 p.m.,Tuesday, July 13: -3.0 feet

walk on bare rocks, mud or sand to avoid stomping on a living creature. Take your trash with you. It may be mistaken for food or entrap shore birds and marine mammals. Scoop your dog’s poop. It’s toxic to some marine animals (and humans).

Rayna Holtz Photo

A striped sunstar

Lesley Reed is a freelance writer and beach naturalist, trained by the Seattle Aquarium. She’s also written a book in search of a publisher about Springer, the killer whale that visited Vashon for six months.



Spend a few nights on Vashon Island Spotlight | Places to stay


ashon is a beautiful place that has something for everyone. But you can’t experience all the Island has to offer in just one day. So stay a few extra nights at one of Vashon’s dozens of diverse accommodations — from spare bedrooms to sprawling beachfront estates. The following is a list of the Island’s many vacation rentals.

Point Robinson’s keepers quarters.

A Beach Retreat (206) 463-5329;

y *2-daum m i n i m

AYH Ranch Hostel (206) 463-2592;

Northview Guest House

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Artist’s Studio Loft B & B (206) 463-2583; Bayview Retreat (206) 713-1416; (property 237706)

You & Your Horse Can Visit a Very Special Place





The Swallow’s Nest

Bed & Barn

A Relaxing & Peaceful Retreat


Escape & Unwind!



Castle Hill B &B and Reservation Services

26734 94th Avenue Southwest Vashon, Washington 98070 (206)463-5491 or (206)463-3556

w w


Duck’s Nest

Western facing waterfront on Quartermaster Harbor Short Walk to Dockton Park Gorgeous sunsets, outdoor dining and Jacuzzi tub for two One bedroom, full kitchen, sleeps up to 5

206-463-2551 reservations & information

2010–2011 || DESTINATION VASHON 63

Belle Baldwin House (206) 463-9602; Betty MacDonald Farm (206) 567-4227; (888) 328-6753; Blue Heron Estate (253) 221-6477; Blue Moon at Manzanita (253) 627-5422


Bonnie’s Waterfront Bungalow (206) 463-5333; Casa Vista Bed & Breakfast (206) 463-4166; Castle Hill Bed & Breakfast Lodging (206) 463-5491 Cottage Paradise (206) 227-3564 The Coulter House (503) 723-8310;



Cove Haven (206) 818-0793;


The Duck’s Nest (206) 463-2551




Eagle Heights Cottage Bed & Vegetables (206) 304-7188;


End of the World Guest Cabins (206) 463-6232

Romantic Island Getaway...

The Extra Bedroom (206) 463-1747

Maury Cottage

...a bed and bath experience! An elegant, northwest-style guest cottage featuring:

Giraffe Guest Suite (206) 463-1372;


Last Resort Guest House (206) 463-5286 Lavender Duck Inn (206) 463-2592;


5313 SW Pt. Robinson Rd, Maury-Vashon Island



End of the World Guest Cabins The Ultimate Escape

Loon Lookout (206) 463-6190; — search for “Loon Lookout” Madrona Meadows Bed & Barn (206) 295-6233;

12311 SW Bachelor Road 206.463.6232

Maury Cottage (206) 463-4558;

Artist’s Studio Loft B&B “Best Places to Kiss in NW” Fireplace Hot tub/Jacuzzi Spa Private entrances Private Baths Luxury Cottages Wonderful Gardens Light delicious Breakfast

Please call Direct for Reservations

(206) 463-2583 email:

MiKo’s Guest House (206) 679-1389; My Sunset Paradise (707) 953-9876; Northview Guest House (206) 463-9181; Our Island Beach Getaway (206) 463-1999 Point Robinson Keeper’s Quarters (206) 463-9602;

Romance,Charm & Sunsets await you…

Newly Remodeled · Hot Tub View of Colvos Passage & Olympics Beach Access You’ll feel right at home.

Last Resort Guest House 206.463.5286

2010–2011 || DESTINATION VASHON 65

Sojourn House (206) 463-5437; (800) 564-5193; Sunset Beach Paradise (206) 325-3067; Swallow’s Nest (800) ANY-NEST; Tramp Harbor Lookout (206) 463-3004 Triple Brook Resort (206) 463-3386 Vashon Beach Cottage (206) 909-7717

Built 1896

Vashon Outlook at Tahlequah (206) 463-2836 Winterbrook Farm (206) 463-5333

Book through Vashon Island Ranch Hostel

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253-221-6477 For Reservations



Vashon’s festival scene is vibrant Spotlight | Festivals

John Sage Photo (above); Ray Pfortner Photo (below)

Above, the carnival at Strawberry Festival is a favorite with young and old. Below, stilt walkers take part in the Grand Parade.

Strawberry Festival bursts with summer fun in July. All of Vashon comes to life when Strawberry Festival comes to town. Streets are packed shoulder to shoulder. A raucous parade features Islanders of all stripes. Kids wander in wonder, holding mom with one hand and a melting ice cream cone with the other. People dance in the street with gusto as live music reverberates from building to building. These are just a few snapshots of Vashon’s annual Strawberry Festival, which will fill every corner of Vashon town on July 16, 17 and 18, 2010. Featuring a variety of local and regional vendors, a carnival of rides, a grand parade and much more, the Strawberry Festival is Vashon’s claim to fame. Named after the berries that were the Island’s main export decades ago, the festival is a nod to Vashon’s richly agricultural past. During the festival, the population on Vashon triples, as visitors drink in Vashon Island’s food, music and culture. This year marks the 101st that Vashon has featured a large festival. It wasn’t always named after the strawberry, however — it was once the Peach Festival, then the Harvest Festival, before

finally settling on the juicy red berry that is celebrated one weekend in July. The jam-packed Strawberry Festival calendar includes the Saturday Grand Parade, Sunday Classic Car Parade, a nightly beer garden, artisan-made crafts in Ober Park, a kids’ carnival, Kiwanis pancake breakfast, Bill Burby Fun Run, loads of music and more. Visit for more information about Vashon’s 2010 Strawberry Festival.

2010–2011 || DESTINATION VASHON 67

Celebrations take place all year long on Vashon.


he Island is host to many vibrant festivals throughout the year — celebrating everything from literature to cider. Vashon residents gather to revel in music, art and the bounty of the earth several times each year. The following is a list of Vashon’s festivals in 2010.

A four-day celebration of the written word takes place Memorial Day weekend — May 28 to 31 — on the Island. “ReadOn, WriteOn, VashOn — A Celebration of Books, Readers and Writers” will explore literature at the published and unpublished level, with workshops geared towards those who love to read, those who’d like to be published and established authors. “Guerilla readings,” where personages such as Mark Twain may be found reading a passage from “Huck Finn” in the grocery store or post office, will precede the festival. For more information, visit Vashon Allied Arts’ 20th annual Garden Tour is on June 26 and 27 and features glimpses into some of the finest gardens on the Island. Events during the weekend include opportunities to learn from veteran gardeners, a sunset garden gala and seminars on garden topics such as living walls and native plants. Visit to learn more.

place at Camp Burton’s outdoor amphitheater. This year’s acts include Troupe Hipnotica, a tribal dance group; Message from Guinea, an African dance and drumming ensemble; and De Cajon Project, a Peruvian music group. A local caterer will provide world cuisine. Visit for more information. Vashon Winery will be given over to the Vashon Folk Festival on Saturday, Aug. 21. Islanders roll out a portable stage, and renowned local, national and international acts perform folk music of many stripes. Taking place all afternoon and into the evening, the festival promises lively tunes and local wines and cuisine. Visit www.vashonwinery. com for more information.

The Island’s Paradise Ridge Equestrian Park will be the site of the third annual Vashon Island Music Festival on July 30 and 31 and Aug. 1. Featuring 24 bands, the gathering is the Island’s answer to massive festivals like Woodstock and Lollapalooza. A showcase of homegrown talent, the music festival lineup includes many local acts and bands. Visit for more information.

CiderFest takes place on Saturday, Oct. 10. The festival will feature kids’ events, cider tastFile Photos ings, cider pressing and seminars Top left, Mark Wells plays at a recent Vashon and workshops on the process Folk Festival. Above, Eduardo Mendonça perof making cider — from plantforms at a recent Vashon World Music Festival. ing orchards to gathering apples and pressing them into cider. It is Below, Ron Irvine serves cider at a recent held during the day at the Village CiderFest. Green; in the evening cider-loving crowds will move to Vashon’s Held on Dec. 4, 5, 11 and 12 this year, Open Space for Arts & Community, the tour is a chance for people to visit the where workshops and a barn dance will places where art is made on Vashon. From take place. Contact Vashon Park District at converted garages to custom-made stu463-9602 for more information. dios, Vashon artists fling their doors open,

A World Music Festival put on by Vashon Allied Arts will be held on Aug. 7. Featuring the lively rhythms of Peruvian and African ensembles, the festival takes

The Island’s Art Studio Tour, featuring the works of dozens of Vashon artists, takes place the first two weekends in May and the first two weekends in December.

show the place where they ply their craft and sell their wares, often at discounts. To learn more, visit



Get a taste of the Island’s many flavors Spotlight | Places to Eat


ashon has a wonderful assortment of restaurants, including ethnic cafés, bustling bistros, coffee houses and burger joints. Here’s a complete list, with a note or two about what makes each one special. Bon appétit! Bob’s Bakery Bob’s Bakery is a Vashon mainstay, serving up freshly baked savory and sweet goodies to Islanders young and old. It was only in 2007 that Bob the baker handed his rolling pin to his successor, who has added some new recipes but also kept the favorites. The ham and cheese croissants are delicious, as are “Bob’s burgers,” croissants filled with black and green olives, marinara sauce and other goodies and topped with sunflower seeds. New this year, Bob’s Bakery serves healthy dinners Tuesday through Saturday. 17506 Vashon Hwy. S.W. 463-1441. Open from 5 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday. Closed Sunday and Monday. $

Café Luna An Island hangout, Café Luna is a bustling coffee house, with great drinks and an array of edibles, including zucchini bread, paninis or granola. A newly expanded lunch menu offers soup, pizzas and the only organic salad available during the lunch hour. The café serves beer and wine. And on Friday and Saturday nights, the seats in Café Luna become prime real estate, when the small venue hosts wonderful live musical acts. 9924 S.W. Bank Rd. 463-0777. Open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday-Saturday and 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday. $

Casa Bonita Casa Bonita serves up varied, delicious Mexican cuisine. The portions are big; the food is yummy, and the waitstaff is friendly. Tortilla soup is a favorite of many, and the daily specials are savory and filling. And after dinner, the churros, which come with ice cream and chocolate syrup, are worth the calories. 17623 100th Ave. S.W. 463-6452. Open daily from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. $$

Green Ginger Chinese Cuisine Bright and airy, Green Ginger serves dependable fare, nicely seasoned and served quickly. The menu is vast, offering both vegetarian and meat dishes. The Mongolian beef is particularly good,

as are the honey-walnut prawns. From 11 a.m to 3 p.m. weekdays, the restaurant has lunch specials, which include soup and rice. Family dinners include several items and generous portions. 9851 S.W. Bank Rd. 463-7788. Open from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday-Saturday and noon to 9 p.m. Sunday. $$

2010–2011 || DESTINATION VASHON 69

The Hardware Store Restaurant

La Playa

The Hardware Store Restaurant is located at Vashon’s busiest intersection — Vashon Highway and Bank Road — and not surprisingly is a bustling, popular place. It serves up American fare, from Misty Isle burgers to a fried chicken salad and flat-bread pizzas. The diverse menu has something for everyone, and the restaurant has an extensive wine list, full bar and espresso machine. The Hardware Store Restaurant serves breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Vashon’s only north-end restaurant, La Playa is often a welcome respite when ferry lines are long — or it can be a destination all its own. Their fishbowl margaritas are a favorite, as are the acrossthe-Sound views. The nachos are great, as an appetizer or main course, and the daily specials offer heartier fare such as seafood enchiladas or steak fajitas. La Playa serves coffee and espresso drinks to morning commuters and during the restaurant’s regular hours.

17601 Vashon Hwy S.W. 463-1800. Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner every day. Opens at 8 a.m. daily. A bar menu is available after dinner is no longer being served. $$$

10824 Vashon Hwy S.W. 567-0020. Open from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily. Espresso stand opens at 5 a.m. $$

Heather’s Homegrown Café

Named for the old tree that once loomed in its parking lot, Monkey Tree is a bakery and restaurant that offers hearty vegetarian lunches — most made with organic ingredients — in a homey environment. The open-faced havarti sandwich is a classic, and the sweet potato fries have many devoted fans.

Homegrown has an eclectic and extensive menu, including such favorites as burgers and chowder as well as items like cashew chicken salad. Heather’s Homegrown serves breakfast all day and has a full bar. 17614 Vashon Hwy S.W. 463-4120. Open 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday, Wednesday and Thursday. Open 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Open 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday. Closed Tuesday. $$

La Boucherie Talk about local. Most of the items in this artfully snug bistro come about 10 miles, from George Page’s Sea Breeze Farm, where the animals are grass-fed and the produce organic. The Frenchinspired menu reflects an attention to detail that food-lovers will appreciate — even the butter and mayonnaise are made from scratch. Dishes often feature Vashon-raised roast pork or lamb. La Boucherie features a full butcher shop as well as a cozy restaurant. 17635 100th Ave. S.W. 567-GOAT (5674628). Shop open 9 to 6 p.m. TuesdaySaturday. Casual lunch and dinner is always served; formal dinners on Friday and Saturday have seatings at 5:30 and 8 p.m., and reservations are required. $$$

Monkey Tree

The desserts are as beautiful as they are delicious, and most are big enough to be split a few ways. The restaurant serves wine and beer, has an espresso machine, and its menu changes three times a year. 17817 Vashon Hwy S.W. 463-4635. Open 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Thursday-Monday. Closed Tuesday and Wednesday. $$

Perry’s Vashon Burgers Perry’s is the place to call when you’ve got a burger emergency — 463-4-911. But it doesn’t stop there; the friendly burger joint also has fries, chicken and garden burgers, onion rings, hot dogs and milkshakes in eight different flavors. 17804 Vashon Hwy S.W. 463-4911. Open 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday-Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. $

Quartermaster Inn & Restaurant This Burton restaurant adjoining a four-bedroom inn features an extensive menu, serving such classics as fresh fish



and steaks as well as an array of vegetarian options. The restaurant’s owners call its fare “comfort food with panache.” 24007 Vashon Hwy S.W. 463-5355. Open 11 a.m. to 10 p.m every day from Memorial Day to Labor Day; open 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Tuesday-Sunday the rest of the year. Sunday brunch begins at 9 a.m. $$$

Red Bicycle Bistro & Sushi Red Bicycle Bistro & Sushi offers both American fare and sushi. The classic menu features salads, burgers and entrees. There are at least two dozen sushi rolls to choose from, and several Islanders who claimed not to like sushi have been won over by venturing to try a Red Bicycle sushi roll. The adjoining bar has pool tables and serves a limited bar menu until 2 a.m. There is live music every weekend.

a.m. to 2 a.m. Friday-Saturday. Sushi bar open 11:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. SundayThursday and 11:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. Friday-Saturday. $$

The Rock Island Pub & Pizza Known by locals as the Rock, this hopping pizza joint has pizza as well as salads, pasta dishes and, at lunch time, subs. Their orange chipotle salad dressing is phenomenal. And their specialty pizzas are inventive — the Thai chicken is spicy and flavorful, the Burton Blaster is rich, and the tostada pizza is fun and different. The eatery has a full bar and beer on tap. 17322 Vashon Hwy S.W. 463-6813. Open 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday. $$

Spice Route

17618 Vashon Hwy S.W. 463-5959. Serving classic fare from 11:30 a.m. to midnight Sunday-Thursday and 11:30

The restaurant features the varied cuisine of Northern India and boasts an all-you-can-eat lunch buffet and


17530 Vashon Hwy S.W. 463-4455. Open 11:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday, 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday, noon to 10 p.m. Saturday and noon to 9 p.m. Sunday. The Buddha Bar is open 6 p.m. to midnight Wednesday and Thursday and 6 p.m. to 2 a.m. Friday and Saturday. $$

Sportsmen’s Inn Sportsmen’s Inn is a popular breakfast spot, and, with doors opening at 6 a.m., it’s open the earliest. Heaping diner-style breakfasts are Sporty’s specialty, though the cook can also oblige smaller orders. A perennial favorite, the Working Man’s Special is eggs, sausage or bacon, hash browns and toast. After 1 p.m., a limited bar menu is available. 17611 Vashon Hwy S.W. 463-0940. Open 6 a.m. to 2 a.m. every day. Full breakfast from 6 a.m. to 1 p.m. Limited menu from 1 p.m. to 2 a.m. $


Monday - Saturday 11am - 9pm Sunday 12pm - 9pm air conditioned - banquets - beer & wine


full bar. The luxurious Pillow Room features cushiony seating on the floor and billowing fabric decorations. The restaurant transforms into the Buddha Bar most evenings, and live music or deejayed events are often featured. Thursday is Ladies’ Night.

If you’ve been to any Subway, you’ll know what to expect from Vashon Subway, except the service at the Island Subway may be better. The restaurant features salads, sub sandwiches and mini pizzas that take minutes to bake.

" - t

9851 SW Bank Road, Vashon Island

17408 Vashon Hwy S.W. 463-4800. Open

2010–2011 || DESTINATION VASHON 71

7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday and 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday. $

Vashon Eagles

is a fine selection of local fruits and veggies as well as natural food items. Minglement is a natural and organic products store housed in the left-hand side of the building.

Vashon’s chapter of the Fraternal Order of Eagles is open to the public for dinner every day, lunch on Thursday and breakfast on Sunday. The dinner menu varies nightly, with such items as prime rib, tacos and cheeseburgers.

19529 Vashon Hwy S.W. 463-9800. Open from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday. $

18134 Vashon Hwy. S.W. 463-5477. Dinner served from 5 to 7 p.m. every day; Thursday lunch served 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.; Sunday breakfast served 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Vashon Pizza is the only restaurant on the Island that delivers, and they’ll go anywhere for $3 to $5, depending on the distance. They also have calzones, cheese bread and a dessert pizza. Try the “price destroyer,” a souped-up supreme pizza with three meats, three veggies, garlic and double cheese. And their number is easy to remember: 56-PIZZA.

The Vashon Island Coffee Roasterie and Minglement The Roasterie and Minglement are actually two businesses, housed in a nearly 100-year-old building made of oldgrowth Island fir. The Roasterie serves beer and wine, espresso and coffee roasted on-site and salads and sandwiches from Pike Place Market. There

Vashon Pizza

17639 100th Ave. S.W. 567-4992. Open from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 4 to 9 p.m. Friday, 1 to 9 p.m. Saturday and 1 to 8 p.m. Sunday. $$.

raw organic juice bar • vegan • gluten-free

Vashon Tea Shop The Tea Shop has dozens of teas to choose from, and a baker makes savory items and pastries each day, including muffins, scones and quiches. The shop’s miso soup is also delicious, and new to the small restaurant are sushi bowls — with brown or white sushi rice, Japanese pickled vegetables and smoked salmon. The atmosphere at the Tea Shop is cozy and relaxing. The shop also sells colorful teapots, jewelry and a few other items. 17610 Vashon Hwy S.W. 463-5202. Open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday-Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. $

Zoomies Burgers & Ice Cream Zoomies has Vashon’s only drivethrough, and oddly enough it’s on the passenger side. Zoomies is a fast-food restaurant, but higher quality than any mainland fast food. The guacamole bacon cheeseburger is delicious, and the chicken sandwich is a lighter option. 17705 Vashon Hwy S.W. 463-2838. Open from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily. $

Take the Vashon Eagles

“Eagle Burger” Challenge! 1/2 lb. premium beef burger

with your choice of fries or onion rings



CASA BONITA Mexican Restaurant

Lunch & Dinner Daily 11:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. –Summer Hours– Fri. & Sat. open til 11 p.m.

(206) 463-6452 17623 100th Ave SW Vashon, WA 98070



Taco Tuesdays • Burger Wednesdays Friday Night Prime Rib • Saturday Poker Night! Members Only Sunday Breakfast Dining is always open to the public (Liquor service is not available to the public) WAC 314-52-115 (1)

18134 Vashon Hwy SW • 206.463.5477




Sushi Master


Serving Lunch & Dinner

Full Service Lounge

Premier Live Entertainment,


Call For Tickets & Reservations


Pool Tables Located in downtown Vashon on Vashon Hwy. 17618 Vashon Hwy SW Vashon Island, WA

2010–2011 || DESTINATION VASHON 73

VoV Standing By: Covering the Island with helpful news For the last couple of years, residents of Vashon Island have been able to get the scoop on Island happenings by tuning to 1650 AM. Voice of Vashon Standing By is a traveler’s information radio station with a range so small that three strategically placed transmitters are needed to cover Vashon with a signal. Most of the time, VoV volunteers produce weekly shows that include information on upcoming events, general information for travelers about where to find basic services on the Island and occasional conversations about topics of interest to folks on the road. Thanks to a fruitful collaboration with Vashon Fire & Rescue, a flashing “alert” sign has been added to the fire danger sign at the top of the north-end ferry hill. When important news breaks of interest to travelers, VoV Standing By records a rotating announcement that supersedes regular programming on 1650 AM — alerting drivers to ferry service disrup-

tions, road closures and power outages. Should a genuine emergency befall the Island, VoV volunteers have the ability to broadcast live from their studios atop Sunrise Ridge. A direct two-way link can be instantly established with the Island’s disaster management officials so that all information coming in can be verified and deemed air-worthy. In addition to VoV

Standing By, Voice of Vashon operates a public access TV station on cable channel 21, along with a regular 24/7 Internet webcast of Island music and interviews ( Generous donors have made it possible for Voice of Vashon to enter its second decade — an inspiration to would-be community radio groups around the country.

Sandwiches • Soups • Salads • Pizza •Snacks

Fresh Fit™Meals with better for you sides and drinks

HOURS: Mon-Fri 8am-9pm Sat 9am-9pm Sun 9am-8pm

17408 Vashon Hwy SW, Vashon Island


Café Luna Hand Tossed


Gourmet/Traditional Pasta & Salads Too Micro Brews Beer Garden/Lounge Fireplace Families Welcome Open Tuesday – Saturday

463-6813 17322 Vashon Hwy SW

WiFi – Wine – Beer

Local & Organic ingredients are used to create our savory and sweet menu items.

Live music Friday and Saturday beginning at 7:30 pm 9924 SW Bank Rd




A final note In this day and age of cookie-cutter culture, Vashon stands out — unique, creative, as real as a summer day in June. We hope you’ve discovered its authenticity — a homegrown way of life that’s both quirky and sophisticated, colorful and thoughtful. And since one can’t get to know Vashon in one visit, we hope you’ll

visit again. This is a place worth many explores, as those of us who have lived here for years know. So drink in its beauty. Enjoy a delicious meal. Listen to music. Go to a gallery. And take home a dozen fresh eggs. And if you find you just can’t shake it — that certain something that’s Vashon — maybe you’ll come back again. And again. And again. Many of us have. — Leslie Brown, editor

Tatanka take - out America’s Original Health Food Open Daily 11–7 4915 N Pearl, Ruston, WA

Burgers Tacos Burritos Vegetarian Salads Frozen Yogurt (253) 752-8778 Ray Pfortner Photo


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