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Who is the Griffin Neighborhood Association?
The Griffin Neighborhood Association (GNA) is registered with the State of Washington as a non-profit organization. We are a nonpartisan group of neighbors living within the boundaries of the Griffin School District, Thurston County, Washington.
Any person owning property, a business, or residing in the Griffin area is eligible to become a member and participate fully in the Association. Membership is also open to community groups and students of the Griffin School District. If you live or work in the Griffin neighborhood or Steamboat Peninsula, the Griffin Neighborhood Association is you.
Originally organized as the Oyster Bay Neighborhood Association in 1990, we were registered with the State of Washington as the nonprofit Griffin Neighborhood Association in December, 1995.
The mission of the Griffin Neighborhood Association is to help build community consensus on major issues confronting the Griffin area, including growth, land issues, habitat, water quality, transportation and school planning. When appropriate, we research issues as honest brokers of information, provide forums for debate, attempt to arrive at community consensus and issue resolution, and present this consensus to appropriate decision makers.
The Griffin Neighborhood Association also undertakes and supports projects that benefit our community, help to build a sense of community, and educate the community on topics of interest.
Our Board and Officers
Our Board is comprised of current members of the Association, elected by members of the Association present at the Annual Meeting. Officers are elected from Board membership by members of the Board.
Local residents: Join Nextdoor to see GNA events, plus many more goings-on here in our neighborhood!
Since 1909 the Prosperity Grange has provided community support and event space on the Steamboat Peninsula. This March 23rd the Grange will host a fundraising event with proceeds to go to the maintenance of this valuable local resource. The feature of the night includes a chocolate demonstration from Blissful Wunders and music by the five-piece jazz band Vendredi’s Bag. Appetizers, Blissful Wunders’ chocolate truffles, wine, and non-alcoholic beverages will be served. A silent auction will be held and all donations to Prosperity Grange are welcome.
According to their website, “Vendredi’s Bag comprises a group of musicians who love Django and Jobim right along with Irving and Miles. They draw songs from across continents and ages, incorporating jazz standards, Latin grooves, bebop, acoustic funk, and gypsy swing into their performances. The group is based in Olympia, WA and includes mandolin, flugelhorn, electric piano, upright bass, and drums.”
“Steamboat Soiree” to benefit Prosperity Grange
Saturday, March 23
6:30 to 10 PM
Doors open at 6:30.
Vendredi’s Bag takes the stage at 7:00.
The chocolate demonstration by Blissful Wunders is at 7:30.
The silent auction will close at 9:00.
Prosperity Grange is located at 3701 Steamboat Loop NW, Olympia, WA 98502.
The folks of Prosperity Grange have planned a terrific event. We hope you can join us in supporting the 110-years-young Prosperity Grange this March 23rd!
Also, mark your calendar for April 6, when Prosperity Grange will host a flea market.
Are you planning a public or private event? Let Prosperity Grange provide you with the perfect venue. Rental of the Grange is open to anyone in the community. The Grange features a stage and full kitchen. For more information, contact them at (360) 970-5652.
Prosperity Grange is on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/prosperitygrange/
In April 2006, John Dodge, the features writer for the Olympian, published an article entitled, The Angels of Steamboat Island Road’ – Dedicated crew incorporates exercise, cleanup into daily routine. The article began:
Just about every morning, anywhere from one to four retirees who live near Totten Inlet’s Gallagher Cove lace up their shoes for a two- to three-mile walk on the county roads in their neighborhood.
But they do more than walk. They pick up litter, too.
Local residents included Keith Anderson, Tom Martin, and Edward and Susan Hill. For more than four years, Dodge wrote, these “Angels of Steamboat Island Road” combined walking with a little community service. “It’s rare for volunteers to stick with it as long as they have,” said the head of Thurston County’s litter control program. “The low-traffic, low-speed county roads don’t get cleaned up without the volunteers.”
Of course, the history of litter cleanup dates back earlier than the Angels. For example, in 1996, the Griffin Neighborhood Association held its 1st Annual Potluck Picnic. One of the events at that picnic was a “Litter Patrol Contest.” Teams of contestants picked up litter from 10 AM to noon. The team collecting the most won prizes. The event was repeated at the following year’s picnic, too. History does not record who won the contest or what the prizes were. What is certain, however, is the entire community benefitted from a little less litter along our roadways.
Fast forward to 2018. Last year, Steamboat Peninsula resident Rob Helms began organizing intermittent cleanups of roadside litter here in our neighborhood. Another of these is going to be held this Saturday, March 9.
Roadside litter cleanup is easy and a fun way to get out and enjoy a walk on a weekend morning. The County provides the litter pickup gear including trash bags, gloves, safety signs, and vests. All you need to bring is water, sturdy walking shoes, and maybe a snack.
This Saturday we’ll meet at 9 AM in the gravel parking lot across Steamboat Island Road from the Steamboat Tennis Club. We’ll be done by 12 noon.
Saturday, March 9
9 AM to 12 noon
We will meet at the gravel lot across from the Steamboat Tennis Club, corner of Steamboat Island Road and Old Steamboat Island Road.
In addition to this Saturday’s litter pickup, there are five more future dates planned. These are:
Sunday, April 21
Sunday, June 2
Sunday, August 11
Sunday, October 6
Sunday, December 15
Watch our Facebook Page for more details, as we approach each of these dates.
“Aside from the exercise and friendly smiles and waves,” John Dodge wrote in 2006, “members of the Gallagher Cove litter patrol enjoy the natural beauty of a litter-free road, even if it’s just a few miles of road they’re able to keep clean.” This weekend, you are invited to join in a quiet tradition of roadside litter cleanup. The current weather forecast is for a partly cloudy and cool, but not too cold, Saturday morning. Perfect weather for a walk with some congenial company.
It was standing room only at the Griffin Fire Department Headquarters when the Annual Community Meeting of the Griffin Neighborhood Association was convened this last week. The keynote speaker was Matt Blankenship, a wildlife conflict specialist with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, whose presentation was entitled “Living with Wildlife.” The Association held its Board election, and a video presentation provided a photo review of some of the Association’s activities over the last year. Representatives of several local organizations were also available to meet with residents interested in learning more each group.
The Year in Review
In 2018 the GNA continued its tradition of offering a summertime community picnic. Musical guests Humor & Heart played. Taylor Seafood Farms made a generous donation of seafood and staff to prepare and serve shellfish delights we’re fortunate to offer at a community event of this kind. Association Board members and volunteers crewed the event and local businesses and organizations pitched in with donations and staffed informational tables. We covered the event in two pieces published before and after the picnic.
This last November the Association hosted a town hall on traffic safety, featuring representatives of the Sheriff’s Department. If you’re on Nextdoor, you can read a thorough summary here.
Volunteers associated with the GNA also conducted several trash clean-ups along area roads in the last year. A schedule of future clean-up events will appear on our Facebook Page and Nextdoor’s Events calendar.
Local Organizations Featured
Here are the names and links to information for the not-for-profit organizations that provided information at the Community meeting:
Arbutus Folk School. Local contact is David Paul.
Fences for Fido. Local contacts are Mike and Becky Reavis.
St Christopher’s Church and Food Pantry. Local contacts are Lindy Vincent or Bill Hanna.
“Living With Animals”
Matt Blankenship’s presentation greatly interested all of us. Before this meeting who knew Fish & Wildlife employed “wildlife conflict specialists”? Mr. Blankenship described many of the animals with whom we share our Peninsula and provided tips about how to enjoy them and, in some instances, how to protect our property from them. His presentation highlighted the presence of deer, woodpeckers, coyotes, bobcats, black bears, and cougars in our area. There were a lot of questions at the Q&A that followed! One big takeaway had to do with the variety of resources available to us from the Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife. Also discussed was the importance of reporting especially large animal sighting (for example, bears and cougars) to Fish & Wildlife. Their phone number is (877) 933-9847, and there is a web page for making reports of dangerous wildlife at https://wdfw.wa.gov/living/dangerous/reports/
Thank you to Board members Jan Hopwood and Jim Goldsmith for this year’s keynote speaker.
Board Election Fails to Fill All Positions
GNA bylaws permit a Board of Directors of between 10 and 17 members. Each year, half these positions on the Board are put up for election and this year there were six open positions to be filled. We were able to fill one of these positions at the meeting.
The Association can continue to operate with a Board of closer to 10 members, instead of the full 17. However, this is a volunteer-run organization and it benefits all if we can fill more positions on the Board. Anyone living or owning property within the boundaries of the Griffin School District can serve on the Board. And we can continue to add Directors throughout the year; it does not require a community meeting.
For more information about serving on our Board, please click here to view our Board Member FAQ. Contact any Board Member, if you have questions. Board meetings are open to the public and the 2019 schedule of meetings will be published on our Facebook Page and on Nextdoor shortly after the Board’s February organizing meeting.
The Annual Community Meeting of the Griffin Neighborhood Association will be held on Thursday, January 24th. This meeting is at the Griffin Fire Department Headquarters. Doors will open at 6:00 PM for a half-hour of socializing. Snacks and beverages will be provided and local non-profit organizations have been invited to set up at tables within the meeting room. This is a nice opportunity to meet with neighbors and catch up on what’s happening in the Griffin area.
The formal program begins at 6:30 PM. There will be a brief business meeting of the Griffin Neighborhood Association. This includes nominations and voting for half the positions on the Board of the Association. The Bylaws of the GNA provide for a Board of between 10 and 17 members in size. Folks owning property or residing within the Griffin School District are eligible to serve on the Board and each year about half the Board positions come up for election.
Please consider this your invitation to join our Board. If you or someone you know are interested in serving on the Board of the GNA, this link to the Board Member FAQ (frequently asked questions) may answer some questions about what it means to work on the Board.
This year’s keynote speaker is Matt Blankenship from the Washington State Department of Fish & Wildlife. Mr. Blankenship is a “wildlife conflict specialist” and he will speak on the topic of “Living With Wildlife.” In our rural environment, this is a topic sure to be of interest to all of us!
If you represent a local non-profit organization and would like to host a table at the Community Meeting, please email Becky at email@example.com.
Annual Community Meeting
Thursday, January 24
Griffin Fire Department Headquarters
We look forward to seeing you at this year’s Community Meeting!