Published on Thu, Jul 17, 2008 by Tara Nelson

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By Tara Nelson

Jolly Green Giant performs in Custer

The American country musician nicknamed the “Jolly Green Giant” will perform two shows July 26 at the Haynie Opry in Custer.

Jack Greene, a 40-year veteran of the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville, Tennessee, was well known by country and bluegrass music fans for his 1966 hit “There Goes My Everything,” as well as “Statue of a Fool.”

Greene will perform at 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. and will be accompanied by Matt Audette and the Circle of Friends Band, a group of musicians who have performed as the Haynie Opry house band for three years.

Tickets are $15 and are available only in advance at The Noisy Neighbor music store in Lynden and at Mojo Music in Bellingham.

For more information, call 360/366-3321. 

For more information about Jack Greene, go to his official web site:

Birch Bay Steering Committee

The next meeting of the Birch Bay steering committee is scheduled for next Wednesday and will feature a presentation by Whatcom County planner Gary Davis Transpo Group representative Patrick Lynch regarding an update on the Birch Bay Transportation Planning Study and the proposed amendments to the Birch Bay Community Plan that would reflect the recommendations of that study.  They will also summarize proposed changes to the county’s zoning code and comprehensive plan relating to transportation concurrency and transportation impact fees. 

The meeting is scheduled for 7 p.m. July 23 at the Birch Bay Bible Community Church at 7039 Jackson Road.

Representatives from the steering committee’s speed limit task force will also present their recommendations for speed limit revisions in the Birch Bay urban growth area and the public will have a chance to comment on those findings. For more information, visit

Bay Café offers laundry services

The Bay Cafe in Birch Bay is now offering pick-up and drop-off services for dry-cleaning and general laundry needs. Owners Tammy Pearce and Dave Bucknell have contracted with Meridian Dry Cleaning as well as Cost Cutters and Food Pavilions to provide the service.

Pick-up and delivery days are Tuesday and Friday before noon.  Bags are provided. For more information, call 371-5409. The Bay Café is located at 7608 Birch Bay Drive and is open daily from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Canadian trucker gets six years in drug smuggling case

A Canadian trucker who allegedly smuggled more than 350 pounds of marijuana through the Pacific Highway border crossing in Blaine last year was sentenced to more than six years in prison.

Corey Wirsz, 30, of Chilliwack, British Columbia, was sentenced Monday in U.S. District Court in Seattle to 78 months in prison, four years of supervised release and a $12,500 fine for conspiracy to distribute marijuana. 

Authorities say the marijuana had an estimated value of $1.2 million.
Prosecutors argued that Wirsz had constructed a secret compartment under false floor with hydraulic scissor jacks that lifted the flooring the entire length of the 53-foot trailer providing access to a compartment capable of carrying over 190 kilograms of marijuana. 

Blaine man arrested at border

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers at the Pacific Highway Port of Entry apprehended a Blaine man registered to participate in the NEXUS trusted traveler program, for an outstanding NCIC felony warrant issued by Whatcom County charging him with failure to appear for a larceny charge.

Charles Green, 50, was taken into custody on July 15 by CBP officers when he arrived at the NEXUS office to appeal a notice that he received that morning informing him of his revoked status in the trusted traveler program. The warrant for his arrest was immediately confirmed with the Whatcom County Sheriff’s Office (WCSO) prior to officers placing Green in handcuffs while he was still waiting in the NEXUS office and escorting him to a holding cell.

Border agents seize record cash

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers at the Pacific Highway Port of Entry arrested a 31-year-old Surrey, British Columbia, man for attempting to smuggle into the United States over $1 million hidden in the cab of his commercial truck.

Navraj Bal was taken into custody on July 10 by CBP officers when a x-ray of his tractor/trailer combination revealed an anomaly in both sleeping bunks in the berth of his cab.

Federal law requires the reporting of all negotiable monetary instruments in excess of $10,000 when imported into or exported from the United States. 

Emily Langlie, a spokesperson for the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Seattle, said the currency seizure is the largest ever to occur in the Blaine area and surpasses the previous records of $450,000 in July 2001.