Letters to the Editor

Letters to the editor

Youth basketball

Success due in part to Tillman

Thank you for highlighting the success of youth basketball on Vashon Island in the Feb. 13 issue of The Beachcomber. The article correctly cites the efforts by parents, kids and coaches in creating a basketball community that is essential to the success we are currently seeing at the high school level. The Vashon basketball community is wholesome, supportive and fun to be a part of.

Sandy Tillman, the former Vashon High School girls’ coach, has devoted tremendous time and effort over the years, both out front and behind the scenes, to develop our Island’s basketball community. More than any other individual, Sandy is responsible for putting Vashon basketball on the map.

Sandy headed the Vashon Island Junior Basketball (VIJB) board for many years and now serves at its day-to-day coordinator. Sandy has mentored rookie coaches (including myself) to grow in the game and “keep it fun.” She has urged us to help our kids take the big step across the water to compete in off-Island leagues. She has trained and supervised experienced players who serve as referees in the on-Island leagues, promoting leadership and accountability in these budding young adults. She has coordinated summer basketball camps for younger players, employing older youth to share their skills and love of the game. In her long tenure as the VHS girls’ coach, Sandy not only led many successful campaigns, but touched the lives of countless girls in a positive way.

Those who participate in basketball on Vashon are now part of a tradition of excellence. Sandy has played a big part in shaping that tradition. As an enthusiastic member of the Vashon basketball community, I’d like to publicly recognize and thank her for all she has done and continues to do for us.

Charlie Pieterick

Break Time

Program began at Senior Center

Thank you for a fascinating account in the Feb. 13 issue of The Beachcomber of Vashon Community Care Center’s vital Break Time, which provides activities for people living in the VCCC and for those who drop in, directed by the enthusiastic and energetic Cara Aguilera, Julia Gardner and other VCCC staff members and volunteers.

But while our good friends at the Vashon Lutheran Church did give us a much-needed place to host the program, it was initiated and supervised by the professional staff at the Vashon Senior Center, spearheaded by Marlene Newby, former Senior Center program coordinator, who’s still engaged with Break Time in its new home at the VCCC.

Started in 1989, the Vashon Adult Day Center program, referred to affectionately as “Time Out,” was originally a respite program for caregivers. In 1996 it expanded to a certified level I and II adult day health program, and for a short time operated three days a week. Newby and Robyn Stover, a former Senior Center social worker, worked together as coordinators. Other employees included registered nurses, physical therapists and program assistants. More than 30 women and men also volunteered their help in the program, which, as one participant described it, “felt like coming out of a dark cave and seeing light again.”

In 2002 the Adult Day Health program was transitioned to the VCCC, where it now operates as Break Time four extended days a week — huzzah! All the former Senior Center staff were provided the opportunity to apply for positions with VCCC, and today many are still there with Adult Day Health, including Lori Hess and Trish Macdonald.

We at the Senior Center miss our old friends and rejoice that they are still getting a first-class, professional and loving experience at the Vashon Community Care Center!

Deirdre Petree

Highway Haiku

A campaign to save our poetry

I was broken hearted to see the Highway Haiku stolen again from the roadside along the northend ferry line. And worse is that the attachment frames had been uprooted and stolen in spite of being engineered against such a theft. And romantically, we were denied the timely display of Barbara Chasan’s Valentine Haiku:

yellow-winged siskin

so NOT like the rest of the flock —

I fall in love

This letter initiates the Haiku Res-urrection Fund. I pledge $100. If you can add to that amount, please mail it to Haiku Resurrection Fund, c/o Wyn Berry, Box 908, Vashon, 98070. This fund will be used to replace and maintain the Highway Haiku project and will give a sign of encouragement to Wyn Berry and Hita Von Mende for their past dedication to the Highway Haiku.

Ann Spiers

Green Party

Democrats chose lesser of two evils

Last Saturday Vashon Democrats and the like caucused at McMurray Middle School. About 1 p.m., I was southbound from town and had chosen Beall Road. The parked cars appeared shortly before coming to Cemetery Road, filled that all the way to Vashon Highway and spread two blocks west and south from that intersection. Counting both sides, maybe two miles of cars parked radiator to bumper sticker. People straggling back to their cars looked happy.

Had the Green Party caucused, their cars would have stretched tens of feet counting both sides. How can so few be right and so many be wrong? I mean, are the Greens wrong? Is it wrong to want the war stopped? You know where this is going: The Democrats who caucused on Saturday voted for the lesser evil, believing that if they’d saved their vote for the Green Party, the evil would have been worse than lesser. The Democrats have done that to third parties in every election in recorded history because that is the way the two-apartheid machine is made. So I ask you, what does one call a situation in which you think it is wrong to vote for the best candidate, and this situation makes you happy?

The term mass hysteria fits, except that in classic mass hysteria there are physical symptoms. And even that exception may be absent because there have been four years of incontrovertible evidence that voting lesser evil does not work and that it does make you sick.

It’s going to be Clinton or Obama and McCain. They may be better than McCain, but neither is good enough to stop the war. Nor will either be able to heal a damaged America, because only a third party can hope to do that. Let’s build that third party.

Tom Herring

K2 Commons

Keep Island’s core intact

I agree with the writer of a few weeks ago (Jack Churchill, “K2 and its consequences: Let’s talk about it”) who talked about the core, the hub of the Island, and cautioned about stringing it out too far.

Keeping the core of the Island compact makes business sense, and it also ensures a feeling of community and friendliness. Enhancing and maintaining the feeling of community should be one of the guides for development on the Island. It means a pedestrian radius and pedestrian-pace crosswalks and sidewalks. It means places for people to congregate, like the Farmers Market, the Senior Center, the library. (I think the library should stay in its existing place and be remodeled there. Would locating the highly used Granny’s Attic near the Vashon Market add to the feeling of community?) It means a pedestrian-scale building not too big and formidable. It means places to sit in the sun.

The K2 building makes me think of a gymnasium, an indoor tennis court or a performance hall.

Dorothy Hall-Bauer

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