Thursday, June 23, 2011

Plan Fourth of July at the Beach

One of our favorite times at the Beach is the Fourth of July. We are usually just getting used to the summer days, Westport is finally bright and noisy with visitors and fishermen, and everyday the giant American flag flies proudly over the Maritime Museum visible from our house miles away.

We love to dress the kids in their matching red, white & blue and head down to the presentation of the colors by the U.S. Coast Guard Grays Harbor at the Maritime Museum. The Old Fashioned Fourth of July is one of those events that makes me thankful as a parent to live in a small town.

This year, according to Westport-South Beach Historical Society president Peggy Coverdale, visitors can enjoy musical entertainment with Captain Pete’s Lollapalooza (Pete Darrah of the Wilapa Seaport Museum & percussionist for the Grays Harbor Banjo Band), a magic show (amazing tricks and outrageous fun with magician Jeff Evans) a cake walk, clowns, children's games, face painting, vendors, a plant sale, silent auction, hot dogs, strawberry shortcake and root beer floats at the former Coast Guard Lifeboat Station.

The 4th will also mark the opening of a special exhibit of limited edition Lighthouses by Harbour Lights. The collection was recently donated by Gretchen and John Lamb of Aberdeen and is valued at more than $10,000. The Destruction Island Lens Building will be open, providing visitors an opportunity to examine a first order Fresnel lens up close. The museum itself will also be open from 10AM until 4PM on July 4.

The Maritime Museum is located in Westport’s Marina District. The Westport-South Beach Historical Society operates the museum and is presenting its 17th annual "Old Fashioned Fourth." Museum admission will be $5 for adults and $2 for children under age 12. There is no charge for admission onto the grounds and access to the events.

When the Maritime Museum's Old Fashioned Fourth is over at 4PM, visitors can enjoy a dinner in one of Westport's many restaurants or stroll on the waterfront, until the Shoalwater Bay Casino presents the South Beach community's spectacular fireworks demonstration. The exhibition will beginning at 10PM in Tokeland—where the fireworks will light up the skies.

We will probably hit the beach after dark, and watch the amateur pyrotechnics go wild with their fireworks, make a fire, and have too many smores. The boys love to eat food they cooked on sticks :) The beach on the 4th, with all the families, the campfires, the fireworks, is quite a sight. Somehow, the next day, it all gets cleaned back up.

Where ever you go on the 4th, have a great one! See ya at the beach!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Rusty Scupper Pirate Daze 2011 - Tentative Schedule

If you've not visited Westport for the Rusty Scupper Pirate Daze festival, you need to make plans now to come down to the beach from June 24 - 26 and check out this event. It's entertaining, family friendly, and really a one-of-a-kind festival. Particularly with this year's launch of the new Pirates of the Caribbean movie, it should be a great event.

New for this year will be the Pirates Breakfast at Half Moon Bay Bar & Grill and an inflatable bounce house amusement area near Scallywag Alley (Scallywag alley is an area for kids games. All games are $0.50 each).

Also, during this weekend, the Maritime Museum and Washington's Tallest Lighthouse are charging reduced admission of $2 to enter either attraction! That's half the normal price!

Here is the tentative schedule, updates will be posted as they are available:

Friday, June 24, 2011

12:00 Noon Festival opens with pirates, vendors, games in Scallywag Alley, inflatable amusements for children, train rides, Sword Balloons,.

1:00 PM Northwest Gypsy Quest Belly dancers perform on the street by the Main Stage; Rusty Scupper Pirate Band performs on the Buccaneer Stage; Captain Arr performs next to the Islander

1:30 PM Mini Brig Battle - Jade Dragon Pirates

2:00 PM Boom Pirates Black Powder Demonstrations (definitely worth watching)

4:30 PM Jade Dragon Pirates - Swordfights with Children

6:00 PM Pirates of the Caribbean Characters Contest.

7:00 PM Pirate After Party @ Viking Bowl

Saturday, June 25, 2011 (Entertainment on various stages goes on all day)

8:00 - 11:00AM Pirate Breakfast at Half Moon Bay Bar & Grill ($5/person if dressed in pirate garb; $8/person if dressed in street clothes)

10:00 AM Pirate Daze street fair opens

10:45 AM Pirates invade Westport

11:15 Pirates & Scallywag costume contest/Boom Pirates Black Powder Demonstration

11:30 Jade Dragon Swordfights

11:45 Treasure Chest Drawings

2:00 Folk Style Belly Dancers on Main Stage

3:15 Mini Brigs Demonstration & Play Comedy Pirates in Red Pants Performance

4:00 Hops Ahoy Belly Dancers

4:30 Vintage Costume Contest

6:30 Jade Pirates Wedding Vow Renewal

7:00 Pirate Potluck @ Viking Bowl

Sunday, June 26, 2011 (Entertainment on various stages goes on all day)

8:00 - 11:00AM Pirate Breakfast at Half Moon Bay Bar & Grill ($5/person if dressed in pirate garb; $8/person if dressed in street clothes)

10:00 AM Pirate Daze street fair opens

10:30 AM Belly Dancers Performance

10:45 Professional Pirate and Scallywags Contest

11:30 Treasure Chest Drawings

11:45 Salty Dog Costume Contest

12;00 Mini Brig Battle

2:00 Pirates on Parade!

4:00 Closing Announcements

New Commerical for Westport Washington Tourism

Have you seen the new Westport commercial? Now airing on... well, I don't really know where its airing, but a friend whose daughter is in it posted it on Facebook. It's cute. Watch it!

Take a Little Vacation from Howell at the Moon Productions on Vimeo.

Monday, May 23, 2011

NW Backroads filming in Westport, Washington

"Northwest Backroads" is a weekly outdoor magazine show highlighting the people, places and things that make the Pacific Northwest unique. Its goal is to give viewers a leg up when looking for that perfect vacation spot, hidden getaway or interesting tidbit of Northwest culture.

So today they filmed at the lighthouse, the Maritime Museum, Seafood Connection on Float 8, and on the Islander Patio while having lunch at the Half Moon Bay Bar & Grill. Lunch is always a little more fun when you have cameras in your face!

Look for Westport on a future NW Backroads episode!

Lacey Resident Hooks 133 lb Halibut off Westport

It's been a strong Halibut season, which is coming to a close here this week. Most of the folks we've been talking to were catching halibut in the 30 - 40 pound range. One of our guests caught a 54 pounder. But this one take the cake!!

It took Mike Homes of Lacey more than an hour to reel in this 133 pound halibut near the shore area off Westport. That's a lot of Halibut fillets!!

Westport Charter Boat Association supports sustainable recreational fishing with the following schedule of directed and open fishing days in 2011:

· Rockfish – limit ten and open year round

· Lingcod (limit two now through 10/15/11)

· Halibut on Sunday and Tuesday to 5/29/11 as directed

· Salmon season is open 6/18/11 to 9/18/11 (limit is two) with the first 8 days, through 6/28/11 as Chinook-only days. During this period the Chinook must be hatchery fish (missing adipose fin).

· Salmon fishing for all species starts 6/26/11 (limit is two), Sunday through Thursday only. Coho must have an adipose fin clip. All Chinook may be retained

· Tuna starts early July to mid October, 7 days per week.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Ryland Akana from Po'okela Street Band to play in Westport at Half Moon Bay Bar & Grill

This Friday & Saturday night (April 22/23), from 8pm - close, Ryland Akana, lead singer of the Po'okela Street Band will be giving solo performances at the Half Moon Bay Bar & Grill. Bruddah Ry is the originator and front man of PSB, and has been performing professionally for 30+ years. Along with the others in the group, Ry is instrumental in writing and the arrangement of all PSB music. His musical influences stem from from "grass roots" Hawaiian music and artists such as Hawaiian slack-key icon "Pops" Gabby Pahinui, the Sons of Hawai'i and Olomana. His appreciation for contemporary music came from Hawaiian national recording artists Cecilio & Kapono, and Kalapana. The passion for Reggae music was influenced by, none other than the Godfather of reggae music himself, Bob Marley.

During his performances, the Half Moon Bay Bar & Grill will be donating $1 from all Kona draft beer purchases to the Surfrider Foundation to support their Clean Water Classic Surf Contest which will take place in Westport May 13 - 15.

Hawaiian drink and dinner specials will also be offered both nights.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Westport’s 24th Annual World-Class Crab Races & Crab Feed - Saturday, April 16, 2011

It's the 2nd weekend of April and in Westport, that means CRAB RACES!! It brings back memories of my previous life, as a big city dweller, a group of coworkers and I used to go to a place called Brennan's Pub, in Marina del Rey. Every Thursday night Brennan's ran Turtle Races, which was a crazy event where for $1 you could choose a "racing turtle" as your own. Each participant would place their racer down in the center of a circle (on the Brennan's outside patio) and then everyone would yell at their chosen turtle until one of them reached the outside circumfrence, thus being declared the winner. Prizes were awarded out of a giant trash bag, and were not anything you could discuss in polite company. It was crazy, and the liberal vegan that I was at the time found it really wrong. But the beer was cheap, it was walking distance from my office, so I witnessed a lot more Turtle Races than I care to admit.

The point is that this weekend is Westport's version of that event. At the Crab Pavilion, a giant tent set up in the Marina district for this event, anyone can register and borrow a racer crab for $3. When your heat is called, racing human places racer crab on a slanted table and the racing human pounds on the table and yells at his crab and the first crab to slide to the bottom of the table is declared the winner! Again, lots of fun for those who are into it, mixed with possible feelings of conflicted guilt if you're an animal lover, with any misgivings removed by the time you take your first bite of the fresh Dungeness Crab from the Crab Feed.

If this sounds at all intriguing to you, below is the Westport Chamber's description of the event with all the details. Rain or shine, hit the coast for the 24th Annual Westport Crab Races and Crab Feed on Saturday, April 16, 2011.

Festivities are centered at the Crab Pavilion, with admission just $2 per person for live music by Catch of the Day, and the main attraction - "World Class Crab Races!" Then dig into the tastiest, freshest local Dungeness Crab dinner you'll ever have, with all the trimmings (just $10 for half or $15 for a whole portion).

Enter the Crab Pavilion for the event - Westport's World Class Crab Races run from 1pm to 5pm - sign up starts at 11am. Select a racer from one of our field of draft picks ($3 registration gets you a crab that's been training since their last molt), or you can bring your own fresh racing crab if you prefer. Racing registation begins at 11am and the heats start at 1pm. Lots of prices donated by local merchants are up for grabs in this annual fun event.

The crab feed will go from 11am to 5pm. The dinner ($10 for half a crab/$15 for a whole crab) includes assorted salads, baked beans, and garlic bread, plus coffee or a soft drink. Hot dogs and other beverages, including beer & wine will also be available for sale. If you prefer to catch your own, take part in sport crabbing right off the docks or the fisherman's boardwalk any time during the season. Westport is home to the most delicious Dungeness Crab you'll find anywhere in the world.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Whale of a Sale - Collectibles & Junque - A whole pod of things you can't live without!

As if there wasn't enough to do in Westport this weekend, the Westport South Beach Historical Society will be putting on their "Whale of a Sale" on Saturday & Sunday, April 16 & 17 from 9am - 5pm at the Westport Maritime Museum on the Marina. There will be Toys & Games, Sporting Goods, Books, Pet Supplies, Jewelry, Small Appliances, Household Goods, Small Furniture, and more!

The proceeds will benefit the Historical Society, who are the caretakers of Washington's Tallest Lighthouse & the Maritime Museum on the Marina.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Watercolors & Wine - Monday's July 25 - August 22 @ the Winery

I was always one of those kids that got an "E" for effort in art and all things creative. Actually it more of an "E" for save your effort for something you might actually be good at, like math. I was always a left brained gal, but as I get older, certain things that were off limits for me are becoming interesting.... things like layups, the idea of running marathons, and painting pretty pictures.

So maybe the 26.2 miles will have to wait until my kids can get them selves ready in the morning without my assistance, but the Winery has an interesting offering this summer that I might just have to schedule around. Ken Mitchell will be giving a 5 week (1Monday each week) workshop on watercolors, and it just sounds like a lot of fun. The last time I held a paintbrush and a cocktail at the same time did result in disaster, but still, I'm a lot older now.

Anyway, the details are below, you can get more info directly from the source. Maybe I'll see you there!

Artists of all stripes are invited to join renowned watercolor instructor Ken Mitchell in a watercolor workshop this summer at Westport Winery. This course will be held in the winery’s gathering room over five Mondays, July 25, August 1, 8, 15, and 22, from 9am to 4pm. This course is for all levels, from beginners to experienced artists. The final class will include a group critique which students may invite guests to attend. Mitchell has a BA and MA in Fine Arts from Colorado State University. He has taught art at all levels for the past 30 years and has won numbers awards for his watercolor and oil paintings. From murals to stage sets to illustrations, Ken has excelled as a professional artist his entire life as he has also taught others the techniques to pursue their own dreams. The course fee for this class is $100. This fee includes instruction only. Students need to bring their own paper, pencils, watercolors, brushes, and non-glass containers. Lunch is available to purchase during class. Sack lunches and outside food and drinks are not allowed. Students need to provide the following supplies. These can be purchased from Cheap Joe's Art Stuff at 374 Industrial Park Dr., Boone, N.C. 28607 (1-800-227-2788) or Daniel Smith Art Supply at 4150 First Ave. South, Seattle, WA 98134 (206-223-9599) or online. 1. Watercolor paper: white 140 or 300 lb., 2 sheets 22"x30", cold press (we will be cutting them into 2-4 sheets each during workshop). 2. Brushes—synthetic, blend or sable (synthetics and blends are less costly). Rounds #0, #4, #10 and a flat 1-1/2" or any brushes you prefer if already a painter. 3. Beginner should look for the seven colors with a * after them. All paints are in 15ml tubes. Ken prefers Windsor Newton, Grumbacher or Daniel Smith brand paints: yellow (aureolin*), orange (cadmium yellow), red (alizarin crimson*, rose madder* or Indian red), violet (permanent mauve or mauve), green (Hooker's green and sap green*), blue (cobalt blue or Joe's blue* or ultramarine blue* or cerulean blue or manganese blue), brown (burnt umber*), and white (Chinese white). 4. 16"x 12" plastic (no glass please) watercolor palette or a large white plastic plate or similar size 5. Water container (medium sized plastic cup like a white plastic butter container) 6. Roll of paper towels 7. Other--painting sponge, additional painting equipment or materials you normally use (if you already paint), a board to tape your paper to (optional) and a roll of masking tape (optional).

Close up Eagle!

Eagle on the beach - enjoying the sunshine. There isn't really much more you can say about this one - what a sight!!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

5th Annual Tokeland/Northcove Studio Tour

Artists from the Tokeland area are proud to present their fifth annual art studio tour on Saturday, April 16 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. This free annual event showcases the diverse talents of 15 artists, working in a variety of media including: painting, photography, ceramics, metalsmithing and furniture.

Judith Altruda’s jewelry studio will showcase her recent work with anticlastic forming, a technique originating in the Bronze Age for shaping metal. She will have hammered cuff bracelets in copper and bronze, etched silver and gold rings set with sea glass, ancient Greek coins and gemstones.

The Mann Studio, headquarters of Wally and Marlene Mann, will show recent works in acrylic and oil painting and pastels.

Knock on Wood, the workshop of Jeffro Uitto, will have driftwood furniture, including benches and chairs.

Sharing the space with Uitto will be Shoalwater Bay tribal artist Earl Davis, who will show carvings and native masks.

Merrill Photography, studio of photographer Marcy Merrill, will be demonstrating colloidal wet plate photography, an early photographic process dating from the 1850s. The effect is that of an old fashioned “tin type.” Marcy will have a photo booth set up in her studio to take pictures of visitors.

At the Tokeland Hotel, artists Brad Saunders and Emily Maldonado will have lamp work beads and native cedar flutes.

Kennedy Creek Pottery focuses on sculptural ceramics with functional and decorative work, and Kimmi Kerns will have graphic designed tile work.

Bev King Lufkin, plein air painter, will present a new series of hand colored pen and ink sketches of the South Beach and watercolors. Janet Karlsson and Barbara Sampson will have watercolor paintings, with Sampson demonstrating watercolor techniques throughout the day.

Free maps showing the studio locations can be picked up at the Tokeland Hotel, the Westport Chamber of Commerce and local businesses in the South Beach area.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Music by Elias at Half Moon Bay

Confirmed!! Elias Kauhane will be entertaining with live Hawaiian music at the Half Moon Bay Bar and Grill on Saturday, March 26. Details to follow, but if you've never had the opportunity to hear the sweet sounds of an acoustic ukulele and hawaiian melodies, you should make it a point to come see him sing & play on March 26!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Whales Breaching off Westport Marina

More than 20,000 California gray whales swim along the Washington coast from March to the end of May every year on their 5,000 mile trek from Baja to the Bering Sea. Gray whales up to 52 feet long and weighing up 36 tons can be seen just off Westport marina.

Westport locals say to bring binoculars for the best onshore whale watching from the beach at Westport Light State Park. Or visitors can reserve ahead for one of the Westport whale watching excursions that often find gray whales just outside the marina entrance.

Whale watching excursion boats are based in the Westport marina, taking visitors on a 2-2 ½ hour cruise to view gray whales from the water at a safe distance. All of whale-watching boats are fully US Coast Guard certified and inspected, and have the latest safety equipment onboard.

Westport excursion skippers often see whales returning year after year like ‘Old Spot,’ the elder male, who generally shows up early in the season. Gray whales are mainly seen just outside Westport harbor in a place locals call ‘The Whale Hole’ where they rest on their journey north.

Westport is located on the Washington coast in Grays Harbor County where boat building, sport fishing, and commercial fishing traditions dating back to the turn of the century live side by side with surfers catching waves on Half Moon Bay, and fun along Westport’s 18-mile sandy beach. Visitors can tour the Westport Maritime Museum, enjoy ocean views from the South Beach jetty and the Westport Viewing Tower, or the historic Gray’s Harbor Lighthouse, Washington’s tallest and third tallest lighthouse on the Pacific Coast.