News In Brief

Published on Thu, Apr 24, 2003
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News In Brief

Smart Growth Birch Bay launches website
Smart Growth Birch Bay, a newly formed independent citizen�s organization focusing on growth, recently launched its website The site provides residents with area growth information, including development projects, meetings and organizations, the development and permit process, and overall growth concerns.
The group held its first public meeting on April 1, and identified major concern areas, including the physical environment of Birch Bay, responsible development, and building community. The next meeting is scheduled for May 13 at the Birch Bay Bible Community Church at 7-9 p.m. Anyone interested in learning more about the group can contact

Millennium trail signs to be posted soon
The city of Blaine has received signs for its leg of the coast millennium trail (CMT), a border-to-border multi-use trail that extends from White Rock, British Columbia to northwestern Skagit County. Blaine public works director Steve Banham said the signs will be posted along the trail route, in the areas of Marine Drive and Semiahmoo spit, within the next couple of weeks. The trail, roughly 50 miles in length, travels along back roads, existing multi-use trails, and passes through three state parks, including Birch Bay and Peace Arch.

Grand opening of Blaine pier May 2
The Port of Bellingham has announced that May 2 will be the official grand opening celebration of the Blaine fishing pier and wave barrier. This ceremony includes a brief dedication, refreshments, and music and will be held at 2 p.m. at Blaine Harbor. The project cost a little over $2 million. The Port of Bellingham covered $1,770,000 and the state of Washington interagency committee for outdoor recreation granted $280,000 to the project.

New assistant public works director
The city of Blaine has hired Robert �Sandy� Petersen as the new assistant public works director. Petersen spent 20 years in the Coast Guard, working on water systems, planning and issues. �I think it�s going to be a very enjoyable experience for me and very constructive for you,� Petersen said at last week�s city council meeting.

Corky and Pumpkin coming back to health
Two overweight 7-year-old bears that were seized by border officials during a drug smuggling attempt in February are coming back to health. Medical staff at the Sarvey wildlife center in Arlington, said the bears have each lost about 100 pounds and are now at a normal weight of 200 to 250 pounds. The bears also had broken teeth and claws when they were seized, and were primarily being fed turkeys. Medical officials said the bears have been put on a diet comprised of fruits, nuts and berries, and are in healthy spirits. The bears were taken by border officials after the vehicle they were being transported in was discovered to have 166 pounds of marijuana and $500,000 in cash. The owner of the bears has not come forward.

Annual Shuckin� on the Spit next Saturday
Join Semiahmoo Resort for the 2nd Annual Shuckin� on the Spit on Saturday, May 3 from noon to 7 p.m. The non-profit festival celebrates the Drayton Harbor shellfish restoration project in its commitment to increase regional public and private awareness of the rich array of shellfish resources in Drayton Harbor and reach the goal of harvesting oysters in May 2004. Tickets costs $20 in advance, $25 at the door, $5 for kids ages 7 to 12, and kids under six are free. Tickets are available at Semiahmoo Resort, Semiahmoo Golf and Country Club, and Pacific Building Center. Events include a shellfish extravaganza, live music, a beer and wine garden, education displays, vendors, storytelling, contests, Plover ferry tours, and more.

Chamber of Commerce announces change
The Bellingham/Whatcom County Chamber of Commerce and Industry announced that its president Michael Brennan is leaving, effective immediately. Brennan will complete arrangements for the annual Ski to Sea race and festival, and will remain with the chamber until the festival has concluded. In a written statement, the chamber said it will continue to meet member and community needs in an effective and positive manner, throughout the transition caused by Brennan�s departure. Reasons for his leaving were not addressed.

Clean-up day scheduled for mid-May
Blaine will hold its 11th annual clean-up day on Saturday, May 17 from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Residents within the city limits of Blaine can bring clean-up loads to C Street, between 3rd and 4th streets, at a cost of $7 per car and $12 per pickup. Refrigerators will cost $25 and tires are $3 each. Washers, dryers, and stoves must have cords removed. Proof of residency may be required and residents are encouraged to consider helping elderly neighbors get rid of their trash.