Marrowstone Island

The Marrowstone Island Briefs offer a glimpse of island life.

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Marrowstone Island Brief 3

Hello, neighbors, welcome to Marrowstone Island. When many of us are on a daily walk on East Marrowstone Road, we meet new neighbors as well as the long timers.

Stephanie & Stephen Gale and daughter Cecilia moved into their Salt Box house in September of '96 after purchasing it from the Andres who had moved to England after residing in it for only four months. Clyde and Grace Newman had owned the land for years, and the four aromatic cedar trees Grace planted many years ago were part of the perimeter of trees left standing after the Andres completely cleared a large section of the five acres and built the two storey New England style house. Last February, the Gales planted 80 seedling firs and a few other variety trees and plan to landscape their five acres at their leisure.

Just a squirrel's hop, skip, and jump from the Gales lives Joe Schaefer, boat captain. He moved into the former Bill and Helen Pittis's house. His attraction to the property was the large garage which came with the house. Joe plans to build an even larger building to store the cars he loves to work on.

Now take a brisk jog further north from Joe and meet John Adam and Gary MacMillan. John works at the Nordland General Store, and Gary is a retired librarian from the University of Hawaii. The house they bought two years ago was built by Dr. and Mrs Ralph Pearson in 1970. John and Gary are landscaping their front yard with rockery, and hired Duane Hagerty to build raised beds for gardening.

Across from John and Gary live Lorraine Limardi and Doug Darrock who moved two years ago into the house Earl Woods had built in the '60's. Lorraine is doing extended studies at WSU and Doug works part time at Willow Creek Windows.

For at least twenty five years now, Carl and Harriet Larson's rhodies, azaleas, pieris, lilacs and heather have exalted passersby on East Marrowstone at spring time. Carl is the gardener. When past windstorms blew down large trees on his place Carl had them pushed to the side and personally dug out the rootwads. The root systems were sometimes as large as a small sized car but Carl is Atlas himself. He looks like a man in his seventies, not someone who is a score more. His bones are the trellis for strong muscles. The garden which wraps around his house is only a hint of the larger one behind. The blooms are in vibrant colors and in good health.

The Nordland Garden Club held its biannual flower show on May 23 with displays of spring flowers, foliage, and weeds. Liz Hazen won the most blue ribbons for horticulture and design. In the horticulture department Liz Hazen, Alma Taylor, Billie Fitch, and Joan Buhr won awards. In the design section Joan Buhr walked off with the Sweepstakes, and Tricolor awards, and the Designer's Choice award went to Liz Hazen. If you missed the show you have deprived yourself of seeing artistry and creativity with flowers, and an excellent wildflower educational display. You missed show chairman, Gisela Mathisen's silver tea with the best cookies and sandwiches ever made. And, you missed the opportunity to meet Clara Lybeck, the only charter member left in the club (which was organized back in 1938). She won the most blue ribbons in the horticulture department.

Mona Lisa is smiling because she is the mother of six females and six males. German Shepard pups, that is. Mona Lisa is one of the Hagerty's two German Shepard dogs. She was sired from a champion working Shepard brought from Germany, and bred to a champion who won in both the Canadian and American kennel competitions.

The females are coming! The females are coming! As the words to a familiar song goes, there'll be a fun time in the old town tonight. The female Rufous Hummingbirds, Black-headed Grosbeak, and Brown headed Cowbirds have arrived to join the males at the watering holes. To regale the females' arrivals, there were the primal cries from a fly by of 36 Canadian Geese heading north. These sightings were reported by Billie Fitch.

Welcome back Nels & Mary Johnson. When two of their 12 children moved to Kansas with their families, Nels and Mary decided to move to Kansas last August '96 to help with two newly born grandchildren. This also gave Nels an opportunity to do volunteer work at St. Mary's Academy Land College. St. Mary's is the largest Catholic school in the country with students from Europe, Mexico, and everywhere. It is located 30 miles from Topeka. The Academy started as an Indian missionary school run by the Jesuits, and was built on the Oregon Trail. When the Indians were moving away and using it less the mission was turned into a college, and during the depression it became a Jesuit seminary.

Nels and Mary returned in March to take up residence on Garden Club Road. Everybody knows Nels. He is Peter and Mark's dad, and grandfather to all his grandkids, and friends to every one in the community. Who can resist Nels' warm smile and strong handshake.

There are other fine citizens on the island. Frank and Miyo Yoshitake have a grand place on Garden Club road. From raw land with towering maple and evergreen trees, dense underbrush and weeds they cleared and cultivated the land into an immaculate garden with a large irrigation pond & putting green. Their garden requires high maintenance, especially the putting green yet they find the time to work the triangle where the welcome sign sits. They can often be seen weeding and nurturing the plants they donated there.

Another fine person who works the triangle is Bill Anliker who lives on Scwartz Road. He keeps the horse tails at bay. With the combined efforts of the Yoshitakes, and Bill Anliker plus the labor of the Nordland Garden Club members we have a lovely setting for the sign. To our friends, and family who come to visit the island, and for us who drive back home every day, the warm greeting says, Welcome to Marrowstone.

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