Illahee 8/24/17 Photos, Blackberry Connoisseurs, Illahee Day Report, Friday Work Party, Fair Poster, DFW Installation, Port Public Meeting on 9/11/17, A Complaint

Photos. These photos go back awhile.

Blackberry Connoisseurs.  In addition to humans picking blackberries we recently came across these guys enjoying roadside blackberries.
Illahee Day Report.  Evidently not one of the 49 people attending Illahee Day had a camera so this is all we have.  It was a great time to meet new and old neighbors and the Port had planned well as it anticipated 50 people attending.  
Friday Work Party.  Camera coverage is anticipated of Friday’s work party at the Preserve with the Washington Youth Academy as the mini storage container with wheelbarrows and tools was delivered Thursday afternoon.  After visiting other forested parks we think the Preserve has some of the best trails around.
Fair Poster.  The Kitsap County Fair had a poster that caught our attention as Illahee has its share of butterfly bushes.  Not a good plant for butterflies.
P1030023DFW Installation.  Monofiliment line around docks can be a real pain both above and below the water, which is why the Department of Fish and Wildlife is installing these receptacles throughout the Sound.  These are the same guys who do the forage fish surveys.
Port Public Meeting on 9/11/17.  The Port of Illahee at their last meeting voted to begin the process of updating their Comprehensive Plan by holding a public meeting at the Sylvan Way Library on 9/11/17 at 5 pm.  This meeting will also be their September monthly meeting and will give residents an opportunity to see and comment on the Port’s 6 year plan for the future.
A Complaint.  We have been asked to post the following complaint.
Here’s an item for your neighborhood blog – I am sick and tired of my house filling up with the smoke from a trash fire.  Burning any kind of trash is illegal!  Not only does it smell bad, it causes me to cough.  I can see the smoke coming from the house just south of the dock.  I have discussed this issue with the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency and they tell me I need to call 911 when this occurs.  I hesitate to call 911 but I will not tolerate the smoke any longer.  Short of calling in the Fire Marshall, I’m not sure what can be done except to remind the local residents that burning trash is illegal.  Perhaps if you mentioned it in your newsletter someone might take the hint.  Thanks.
Jim Aho

Illahee 3/18/17 Friday Work Party, Rotary Sponsored, 45 Wheelbarrows, WYA Cadets, Wood Chips on Trails, Lunch, Drone Coverage, Volunteer Supervisors, Scotch Broom Detail, Wheelbarrows Loaded, Trails Enhanced, Hours Expended

Friday Work Party.  Another major work party at the Illahee Preserve with about 65 participants happened on Friday, March 17, with volunteers showing up from 7 am and departing after 4 pm.  For all day events with the Washington Youth Academy (WYA) require a Port-a-Potty which is provided for by Jim Fox of Cool Car Classics.

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Rotary Sponsored.  Work parties with the WYA are sponsored by the Rotary Club of East Bremerton, who has adopted the Illahee Preserve as one of its service projects and coordinates major events like these.  We decided to cover this work party ‘by the numbers’.

45 Wheelbarrows.  Wheelbarrows are a logistical item that has been solved by the Rotary and United Storage, with a Go-Mini Container holding about 30 wheelbarrows and tools.  These are complimented by 8 more from the Park’s Department’s Volunteer Coordinator and her trailer, and another like amount from Rotary members who drop them off the day of the work party, as shown in the photo.
50 WYA Cadets.  Around 8:45 am the bus shows up with between 50-55 cadets.  Friday there were 50 cadets plus their supervisors.  
8 Wood Chip Piles on Trails.  There were roughly 8 large wood chip piles located at various spots around the Preserve, that were dispersed to the trails, primarily along the trails west of Thompson Lane.
30 Minute Lunch.  After parking their wheelbarrows it was time for short lunch break for the cadets and for those guiding the work.  
1 Drone Coverage.  We had drone coverage of the work party and an opportunity to view the drone during lunch. 
9 Volunteer Supervisors.  Thanks to Ceci for making sandwiches for the guys in the orange vests! 
10 Cadet Scotch Broom Detail.  When the chips were distributed other tasks were assigned and this group went after the Scotch broom (a noxious invasive plant in WA) in Compass Circle.  With so many deer in the Preserve a meadow area has been maintained.  There was evidence the deer had been eating the Scotch broom, but still the plants were gaining on the area, so it was time to remove them.  Some of the cadets decided to go after the larger and more difficult to remove plants, and in every case succeeded, as in this situation.
10 Wheelbarrows Loaded.  The task was well estimated as the cadets filled 10 wheelbarrows with the broom.  Without these 10 cadets and the other 40 cadets working on other projects, the Preserve would not be the treasure it is.  Thanks to the WYA, the Rotary Club of East Bremerton, and the Park Stewards! 
5 Trails Enhanced.  Below are two photos taken on Saturday to show what the enhanced trails looked like.
400 Hours Expended.  Over 400 volunteer hours were expended on Friday by all concerned, not to mention all the preparation time getting ready, which is why the Illahee Preserve is reported to have some of the best forest trails in the county.
Jim Aho

Illahee 8/31/15 Power Outage, Downed Trees, Friday Work Party, Illahee Outfall Meetings, vigilant Residents, Timbers Edge, Raccoon Photo, Orca Visit, Orca Regulations, Ant Correction

Power Outage.  We heard on Sunday afternoon there were 594 residents in Illahee without power with an estimated time to restore power set for Tuesday at 6:30 am, when a plea was made for help. We don’t know how it got expedited but after 32 hours without power we are glad it happened and thank those with contacts. Another 30+ hours would have been tough.  

Downed Trees.  We heard the power outage problem was the result of branches/trees over power lines in three locations along Illahee Road hill.  Only a few trees were down across trails in the Illahee Preserve, with several of them already taken care of.

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Friday Work Party.  There was another successful Illahee Preserve work party on Friday with 55 Washington Youth Academy cadets.  Invasive plant species were removed and wood chip piles were depleted as wheelbarrow after wheelbarrow of wood chips were placed on the trails.  It takes many hundreds of labor hours to keep the Preserve looking great and it is all done with volunteers.  Thanks to the Washington Youth Academy and the East Bremerton Rotary Club for all their efforts on Friday!!!  And thanks to those who helped supply the work party with wheelbarrows and tools!
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Illahee Outfall Meetings.  This past week there were three meetings held to try and resolve the problem with the Illahee Outfall that “sticks out like a sore thumb”.  A resolution was eventually agreed to by those present which needs to have revised drawings approved by the Department of Community Development (DCD).  More information will follow.  The first photo shows the problem of the pipe sticking out too far.  The second photo is looking into the manhole at the pipe being held by two long bolts, which was deemed inadequate.  The manhole will be relocated and the pipe will be moved back, and a better anchoring system designed.  
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Vigilant Residents.  There are some who think the people in Illahee are simply complainers when they oppose some of the projects being contemplated.  The response has been it is the Illahee Community that has to live with the final result of projects.  If something is not done right residents may be looking at it and living with it everyday for as long as they live here, so they want it done right.  Additionally, they have found they cannot always depend on the county to watch out for the community, which is why they need to be vigilant.
Timbers Edge.  What is the hold-up with the 25 acre TE purchase (Phase 1)?  Turns out an appraisal is needed for the state funds and the county, who is pledging interim funds.  Complex appraisals take time so we are currently projecting middle to late September for the appraisal to complete.  Phase 1 needs to complete, so things are currently in a holding pattern for Phase 2.
Raccoon Photo.  Thanks to Rick for this photo during a past thunderstorm.
Here is the picture of the raccoon, that was frightened by the thunder. He/she was at eye level just outside our back door in a large cedar tree at 5533 Oceanview Blvd.  Looks like he was praying for protection from the storm.
Orca Visit.  The orca pod visit on August 18th turned out to be quite an event.  We saw some private videos that were amazing and have been trying to find someone who will share their videos.  Turns out some of them found out afterwards that there are some strict restrictions about how close you can get to whales, assuming these were the southern resident orcas.   The person in this photo was trying to maintain some separation when another group from the pod came up next to his kayak.  He had is video running taking photos of the far away orcas and when the others surfaced next to him you can hear how scared and surprised he was.  Cameras capture the sights and sounds of some amazing events.
Orca Restrictions.  The regulations for boaters are:
Orca Regs 
Ant Correction.  In a previous update with reference to fire ants I have been corrected as follows: 
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These are not fire ants. There are no fire ants north of the Texas, New Mexico area. Fire ants do build mounds but they are made of earth not vegetation detritus. The ants you picture are one of several similar species collectively called mound building ants. They are benign to beneficial as they often prey on insect pests. Calling them fire ants may well cause people to destroy these relatively harmless creatures for no reason.
The ants might be thatching ants. That’s what we had. They were stripping my plants and made a mound as high as my waist. Never heard of them till I had them in my yard. Wish I’d taken pictures.
Jim Aho

Illahee 3/25/15 Blossoms, Thursday Planning Meeting, Friday Work Party, Tuesday Developer Meeting, Rotary Club Appreciation, Beach Education Classes

Blossoms.  The first photo is several weeks old and is of an apricot tree.

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Thursday Planning Meeting.  Help is needed to figure out how to plan and run a Capital Campaign.  Last Thursday we began brainstorming on what we need to do to accomplish a very big task, i.e. figure out how we can raise enough funds to purchase the Timbers Edge development properties.  We will be meeting every Thursday (until further notice) at 5 pm at the Pacific Planetarium at 817 Pacific Ave in downtown Bremerton and can use any ideas or help anyone can provide.  If you can’t attend, maybe you have some ideas — please let us know as the clock is counting down and soon our 5 months to raise the funds will be 4 months as the start date was 3/8/15.
Tuesday Developer Meeting.  On Tuesday (3/31/15) the community will have an opportunity to meet with John Johnson, the developer who has been given the task to either sell the property to the community or develop it.  John would rather the community purchase the property, but he also needs to be ready to develop it if they fail to raise the funds to purchase it.  He will share the plans they have to develop it at its approved density or at a reduced density should the community purchase all but the Avery Homestead.  Of course the goal for the community is to purchase all the properties so there would be no development.  The meeting is at 6:15 pm on Tuesday at the Sylvan Way Library. (The map below has been presented before but new people access our website and have been added to the email list so it is shown again.)
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Friday Work Party.  Another large work party is planned for Friday (3/27) with the Washington Youth Academy.  This is an all day event that should take care of all the remaining wood chip piles, plus lots of other tasks as we get ready for another year of growing popularity of the Illahee Preserve.  Below is a photo of a new batch of chips at Trail Marker #12, just where they are needed. 
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Rotary Club Appreciation.  Thanks again to the Rotary Club of East Bremerton for coordinating these events and for helping make the Preserve such a great attraction for so many people!!!!
Beach Education Classes.  One of the best classes around is the Beach Naturalist Class that is offered only once a year and it begins on April 9th.  Illahee has over 3 miles of some great shorelines and access points to get to them.  Details of the class are:

Explore the Wonders of Puget Sound with Kitsap Beach Naturalists 

 WSU Kitsap Extension and UW SeaGrant proudly present the 2015 Beach Naturalist training, which is open to the public. If you want to learn more about marine life and local water issues while exploring beaches, then this is the class for you!

 When: Thursday evenings April 9 through May 14 from 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm

Where:  Poulsbo Marine Science Center

Who: Adults and teens are welcome to attend. Children under 14 must be accompanied by an adult.

Cost: Cost for 6 weeks is $65. Scholarships are available.

 Surrounded by water, the Kitsap Peninsula is an amazing place to learn about and enjoy sea life. Over the course of six evening classes and a variety of field trips, we’ll learn about sea stars, clams, crabs, and other cool critters as well as seaweeds and plants that live on our beaches. We’ll also discuss Salish Sea oceanography and shoreline living, conservation, and restoration.

 After the training, trainees can choose to volunteer in exciting service projects, which include beach explorations, local community events and service projects that help protect and enhance Kitsap shorelines. 

 For more information visit WSU’s website at http// or register online at

Jim Aho