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Coupeville resident sharing his passion for trains

  • Nov 29, 2013 at 11:00AM updated at 2:45PM

Walking into the basement of Jack Tingstad’s house is like taking a trip back in time. Trains traverse the old railroads of Colorado, making their way through mining towns. “It’s a great hobby, especially in the Northwest during the winter,” Tingstad said. Tingstad will host his 13th model railroad open house from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Nov. 30 and Dec. 1 at his home on 508 Broadway St. Tingstad has volunteered at the food bank for 10 years, and asks those coming to see the trains bring a donation for Gifts of the Heart food bank.

Oak Harbor schools flood Help House with food donations

  • Nov 27, 2013 at 12:40PM

Jean Wieman could hardly believe her eyes when she saw a bright yellow school bus approach bulging inside with boxes of food. “I kept going, ‘Is that stacked with food? That’s a lot of food,” she said. When she was told it was only the first of two buses stuffed with food, her jaw dropped.

Navy says ‘maybe’ to Oak Harbor city sewer project partnership

  • Nov 30, 2013 at 9:00AM

Oak Harbor Mayor Scott Dudley didn’t get the answer he was expecting this week from Navy officials, but he did manage to ruffle some military feathers. Navy and Oak Harbor officials met Monday to talk about whether the base will become a customer of the city’s planned sewage treatment facility. The Navy’s answer was less than definitive: maybe.

There are plenty of options to shop locally this holiday season | Editorial

  • Dec 1, 2013 at 7:00AM

By starting the consumer shopping frenzy called Black Friday a day early, several large retailers are being criticized for eating away at Thanksgiving Day, a traditional time for family gatherings, feasting and reflection, Whidbey residents can easily avoid the madness and keep the holidays merry by shopping on the island. Whidbey Island has an abundance of unique shops and is great for thoughtful gift items all season long.

Island County keeps futures funds, with stipulations

  • Dec 1, 2013 at 9:00AM updated Dec 2, 2013 at 8:12AM

Island County commissioners voted unanimously in favor of continuing the conservation futures program after hundreds of residents contacted them in support over the last week. More than 100 people attended the Monday meeting giving nearly two hours of public comment. All but a few speakers favored the continuation of the conservation futures levy. Many said they’d like to see an increase to the tax, which costs property owners roughly $35 per year and is expected to bring in $679,814 in 2014.

33 years of Reno: Macaw parrot loved by generations of Oak Harbor residents

  • Dec 1, 2013 at 10:00AM updated Dec 2, 2013 at 8:35AM

Customers at Island Pet Center will no longer see a friendly face at the back of the store. Reno, the macaw parrot, died Tuesday, Nov. 19. “I was 15 and half years old when I took her out of the box for the first time,” said Brian Knoll, Island Pet Center owner. Reno has been a prominent figure at the store for 33 years. The store opened 36 years ago.

OHHS alumni run for leading college cross country teams

  • Dec 2, 2013 at 8:28AM

Three former Oak Harbor High School runners helped their college cross country teams finish in the top 10 in the nation to highlight the athletic efforts of local graduates at the collegiate level this fall.

Reminder: Growler study open houses Dec. 3-5 at Whidbey NAS

  • Nov 27, 2013 at 12:27PM

The Navy plans three public scoping meetings early next month to obtain public input on an Environmental Impact Statement or EIS for EA-18G Growler operations at Whidbey Island Naval Air Station.

North Whidbey Park and Rec board passes budget, increases fees

  • Dec 2, 2013 at 9:00AM

After two budget workshops and two meetings, the North Whidbey Park and Recreation District Board of Commissioners passed its 2014 budget. The board approved a 10 percent fee increase to all programs, except for pool rentals and swim school. Fees for swim school were raised by 20 percent 18 months ago, while other programs fees hadn’t increased since 2006.

Oak Harbor woman injured in rollover accident

  • Dec 2, 2013 at 10:30AM

An 18-year-Oak Harbor woman suffered a serious injury in a rollover accident on North Whidbey Saturday morning. Kylee Hancock-O'Brien was traveling south on Monkey Hill Road in a 1998 Mercury Mountaineer and drifted off the road, the Washington State Patrol reported.

Why are taxpayers funding swim team? | Letters

  • Dec 3, 2013 at 7:00AM

Editor, North Whidbey Aquatic Club is the only North Whidbey youth athletic team with a fullsalaried coach funded by the taxpayers. The pool board seems to understand that the subsidy they give to their NWAC and masters family members and friends is only about 30 percent of the $40-$60 each property owner is assessed for the North Whidbey park and recreation tax levy.

Adopting a pet is a commitment | Letters

  • Dec 3, 2013 at 7:00AM

Editor, I’m about to rescue my fifth stray cat, a young neutered male, since moving here in 2009. I have found the stray and feral cat situation here out of control. WAIF has an excellent spay and neuter program and they are a wonderful organization. I do have a theory and it doesn’t involve just blaming the military.

Need to take look at commenting system | Letters

  • Dec 3, 2013 at 7:00AM

Editor, Recently I made a personal decision to stop using Facebook. I have a problem with a company this size that affects so many people that you cannot contact. Recently, Facebook locked my page until I agreed to a privacy policy change. I did not want to agree to this without speaking to someone from Facebook.

’13 Caregiver Conference a great success | Letters

  • Dec 3, 2013 at 7:00AM

Editor, During this special season of giving thanks, we would like to acknowledge the sponsors, vendors, presenters and participants for their support of the 2013 Caregiver Conference, “Caregiver Safety Nets.” These donations made the conference experience a very rewarding one for our caregivers, who play such an important role in the lives of their loved ones and their community. Caregivers on Whidbey Island are fortunate to have the support of so many community agencies, businesses and individuals.

Whidbey Island digest

  • Dec 3, 2013 at 9:00AM

South Whidbey measles scare unfounded; port director’s employment agreement approved; digital attendance OK’d by south end parks board; South Whidbey students gather food for needy; city of Langley considers number of officers; Island Consort starts inaugural season; one-way road in Coupeville proposed to deal with erosion.

Whidbey Island scanner

  • Dec 3, 2013 at 9:00AM

Tuesday, Nov. 26 At 3:11 a.m., a caller reported a Dumpster on fire at a North Oak Harbor Street location. Monday, Nov. 25 At 9:03 a.m., a caller reported a car accident on Highway 20.

Winter prep preview | Oak Harbor boys basketball

  • Dec 3, 2013 at 12:00PM updated Dec 5, 2013 at 7:48AM

The big question heading into the 2013-14 boys basketball season for Oak Harbor High School is whether the Wildcats can continue the success of last winter.

Winter prep preview | Oak Harbor girls basketball

  • Dec 3, 2013 at 12:00PM updated Dec 5, 2013 at 7:47AM

The Oak Harbor High School girls basketball team won’t be shy about shooting, according to first-year coach Jon Atkins.

Hundreds help ring in holidays in downtown Oak Harbor

  • Dec 3, 2013 at 2:39PM

Even with dark gray clouds overhead, fate refused to rain on the holiday happenings Saturday. Community members came together in downtown Oak Harbor for the annual Tree Lighting and Santa’s Arrival Nov. 30. Marisa LaRue traveled from Freeland with her granddaughter to do some shopping and watch the lighting. “I’m glad it’s not raining,” she said.

Navy says it will limit OLF Coupeville touch-n-goes

  • Dec 4, 2013 at 8:00AM updated at 2:23PM

A Coupeville-based group that sued the Navy in July over jet noise is claiming that Outlying Field Coupeville is not as essential as the Navy claims. The Navy suspended touch-and-go operations at OLF Coupeville in May, but plans to resume in January in a more limited capacity than in recent years. The landing practice field is part of Whidbey Island Naval Air Station.

Holiday Market features local vendors, products and Santa Claus

  • Dec 5, 2013 at 7:00AM

Those stopping by the Holiday Market on Pioneer Way in downtown Oak Harbor might see some familiar faces from the farmers’ markets during the summer. “It’s nice to have something to do in the off season,” said Lisa Phillips, beekeeper and Round Tuit Farms owner. Phillips is selling honey at the market. She has six hives that she looks after on Whidbey Island. If anyone has questions about honey, Phillips is the person to ask. She has plenty of samples to make sure people can find the right honey for them. She also sells honey from four other beekeepers, so there is a variety of honey to try.

Big Brothers Big Sisters is making a difference for kids | Editorial

  • Dec 5, 2013 at 7:00AM

Members of the Whidbey Island community will gather Friday in the spirit of the holidays and for a very worthwhile cause. Big Brothers Big Sisters of Island County is holding its annual Festival of Trees Auction and Gala. It is the nonprofit organization’s largest fundraiser of the year. Every year, the auction features an assortment of beautifully decorated trees available for purchase at auction.

Organizer carries on family tradition: Re McClung continues to collect and distribute toys as part of Toys for Tots campaign on Whidbey Island

  • Dec 5, 2013 at 8:00AM

For Re McClung, watching toys pile up in her garage is a joy to see. In a way, it’s therapy. McClung said she is pleased to still be involved with the Toys for Tots donations program on Whidbey Island this holiday season. She knows what the sight of those toys would have meant to her daughter Megan McClung, a former U.S. Marine killed in Iraq in 2006. And she knows what they would have meant to her husband Michael McClung, also a former Marine who died of natural causes in July. Both had giving hearts and held soft spots for children.

Developer files claim against Oak Harbor

  • Dec 5, 2013 at 8:00AM updated Dec 6, 2013 at 11:23AM

Partners who built a development that includes the new Island Drug store have filed a $499,000 claim for damages against the city of Oak Harbor. Dry Lake Land Stewardship, LLC, alleges in a Nov. 18 claim that city staff misapplied state and city laws, resulting in a delay of the project and the alleged damages. The claim documents identify Oak Harbor residents Chris Anderson and Aaron Syring, owner of Island Drug, as members of Dry Lake Land Stewardship.

Oak Harbor man arrested in online sting operation

  • Dec 5, 2013 at 8:00AM

An Oak Harbor man was arrested as part of the Anacortes Police Department’s online sting operation targeting sexual predators. Detectives with the Anacortes police posed as a 13-year-old girl on a social networking site during the operations, which was a collaboration with the Skagit County Prosecutor’s Office and the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, according to Capt. Lou D’Amelio with the Anacortes Police Department.

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