Letters to the Editor -- March 30, 2006

Published on Thu, Mar 30, 2006
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Letters to the Editor

The Editor:
The Vigil project, a sculpture proposed to grace Blaine’s boardwalk, has enjoyed very enthusiastic support.
To date we have over $20,000 in private contributions and an additional $20,000 in pledges. Our committee would like to thank those who have so generously donated or pledged. The street end plazas are scheduled to be completed by July of this year; if we can get the needed donations, Vigil will be installed this fall.
To keep this project on schedule, we need to collect an additional $20,000 by May 1. This project will become a reality only with widespread community support, so please consider purchasing a brick or plaque. For more information on Vigil, and how you can contribute, please go to our website www.pacificartsassoc.org and click on Vigil.
Information is also available at Northern Meadows Specialty Gifts and Wine across from the new H Street plaza.
Bruce Wolf, chairman, Vigil
committee
Blaine

The Editor:
One of the few bargains available from the U.S. government is the U.S. passport. The cost, if you do your own application, is $67, plus photo and postage. The document is good for 10 years. The U.S. post office will do it for you at a cost of $107 all inclusive. (Make an appointment!)
Do the math. Passport processing is backed up so apply soon for use in 2007.
Any substitute document for Canadian border use will probably be just as expensive as our passport, and have a five-year validity; therefore, more expensive.
LeAnna McGuire
Blaine

In Review

By Tom Birkenhead

On Friday, March 24, several hundred local residents were thoroughly entertained in the Blaine School District Performing Arts Center by 45 teenage girls from the Seitoku Junior and High School Brass Band and Wind Ensemble, located a quick 20-minute train ride from Tokyo on the Chiba peninsula.
Blaine high school, under the coordination of Leslee Smith, has been fortunate to plug into a Canadian music exchange program with Japanese schools, whereby one of their schools visits us annually and Blaine students visit and perform in Japan every two or three years. Blaine students, under Blaine music teacher Bob Gray and his wife Dorita, are currently fund-raising for their next trip to Japan in February 2007.
The Seitoku high school is an all-girls school and their concert was high energy and absorbing. The orchestra had excellent balance, the percussion was exact and subtle, the musicians had distinct enunciation, and the music was bright and uplifting.
The conductor “sensei” was Hatsuo Shindo and his hard work showed in the performance, especially after the intermission when he turned the conducting over to several of the students who showed training and spunk.
They began the evening with a rousing version of the Star Spangled Banner, which, of course, brought them an immediate standing ovation, the first of many. Their renditions of Franz von Suppe’s Pique Dame Overture and Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana were particularly outstanding.
The second half of the concert was more animated with Disney tunes and American jazz choreographed with dance routines and intricate interweaving on stage. At several points in the show musicians walked and played throughout the audience.
The tone of the trumpets was superb and the flutes and piccolos were amazing, especially considering the age of the players.
The finale was followed by several encores and standing ovations and then an audience gathering at the stage with heartfelt thanks and goodbyes.
That afternoon the Japanese girls visited Blaine elementary classrooms and shared Japanese calligraphy, origami and conversation.
American students noticed that some of their visitors had Japanese Kanji characters written on their hands and wrists, which turned out to be the order of songs for their evening concert.
Needless to say, the American children wanted the same thing and many were soon sporting Kanji on their hands and arms, and then on their faces. It’s only hoped that the ink was washable.

Letters Policy
The Northern Light welcomes letters to the editor; however, the opinions expressed are not those of the editor. Letters must include name, address and daytime telephone number for verification. Letters must not exceed 350 words and may be edited or rejected for reasons of legality, length and good taste. Thank-you letters should be limited to 10 names. A fresh viewpoint on matters of general interest to local readers will increase the likelihood of publication. Writers should avoid personal invective. Unsigned letters will not be accepted for publication. Requests for withholding names will be considered on an individual basis. Only one letter per month from an individual correspondent will be published.

Please send your letter to:
225 Marine Drive, Blaine, WA 98230 or fax 360/332-2777.
E-mail:editor@thenorthernlight.com

Letters Policy

The Northern Light welcomes letters to the editor; however, the opinions expressed are not those of the editor. Letters must include name, address and daytime telephone number for verification. Letters must not exceed 350 words and may be edited or rejected for reasons of legality, length and good taste. Thank you letters are limited to five individuals or groups. A fresh viewpoint on matters of general interest to local readers will increase the likelihood of publication. Writers should avoid personal invective. Unsigned letters will not be accepted for publication. Requests for withholding names will be considered on an individual basis. Only one letter per month from an individual correspondent will be published.

Please email letters to letters@thenorthernlight.com