“An Evening with Community Pediatricians” is Latest in a Series to Strengthen Our Community

The Griffin School District Presents “Strengthening Our Community,” the third in a monthly virtual series for parents, caregivers, community members, and anyone interested in attending.

This month’s topic is “An evening with Community Pediatricians.” Special guests are Dr. Beth Harvey and Dr.Maria Huang. The event, which takes place on Zoom, is Thursday, May 13, from 6 to 7 PM.

The Zoom meeting link is https://us02web.zoom.us/j/83416513461?pwd=V2VLbnNUbTdBZ0VrbGkyWHVtUWxSZz09

Please join us for an evening featuring our special guest speakers Dr. Harvey and Dr. Huang, both local pediatricians. They will speak about the impacts of the COVID pandemic on our youth, vaccines, mental health, ongoing preventive measures, and answer any questions you may have.

Here’s your chance to talk to the experts!

If you have questions for this event’s guests, you are invited to email them to ehagen@griffinschool.us

Save the date for next month’s event in the series, “Family Support During the Summer.” That event will be held on June 10th and will feature local service organizations speaking about programs offered in our community.

We thank the Griffin School District for making this series available to us.

May’s Plant Sale Events for Animal Rescue Announced

Feline Friends logoLocal resident Diane Jacob, of The Cameron Gardens, has announced this year’s schedule of plant sale events to benefit animal rescue groups in Thurston and Mason counties. The first is this Saturday, May 1st.

“Many gardeners and volunteers,” says Jacob, “contribute time and plants from their own gardens to help our furry friends.”

“Each sale will have different plants, great prices, and probably something you, the butterflies, and hummingbirds would love in your yard.”

Masks will be required, and the hosts ask that you practice social distancing at all times during the plant sales.

All plant sales will be held, rain or shine, and 100% of proceeds benefit homeless pets.

Saturday, May 1
9 AM to 2 PM
Feline Friends Plant Sale
Griffin School

This sale will feature many perennials at very good prices. The Feline Friends Cat House will be open for adoptions by appointment only during Covid. Call them at (360) 866-9300. Check out their website at www.Feline-Friends.net.

Saturday, May 8
9 AM to 3 PM
Plant and Garden Things Sale
Our Community Credit Union parking lot, 2948 Olympic Hwy N, Shelton

The very popular Plant and Garden Things sale for Adopt-A-Pet will be in Shelton on May 8th – just in time for Mother’s Day. There will be some hanging baskets as well as many greenhouse-raised annuals.

Saturday, May 29
9 AM to 2 PM
S.N.A.P. (Spay & Neuter All Pets) Plant Sale
Thurston Co. Animal Services, 3120 Martin Way, Olympia

S.N.A.P. (Spay & Neuter All Pets) will hold its annual Plant Sale at the Thurston County Animal Services on Martin Way on May 29th. There will be many plant choices to check out here including donations from Briggs Nursery as well as more local gardeners.

There will be no close-out plant and garage sale for Feline Friends this year.

Thanks to all the volunteers who came to help and donate lovely plants from their gardens.

Ellen King Rice Interviewed for First Episode of “Steamboat Spotlight”

“Steamboat Spotlight” is a new video series undertaken by members of the Griffin Neighborhood Association. In this series, we’ll host online interviews with different folks in our community.

For our first interview, we spoke with Ellen King Rice. Rice is a wildlife biologist, award-winning author, and musician.

During her interview, Rice answered the question, “Why mushrooming?” and describes some of the many joys of searching out mushrooms and related life in our region. In our interview, Rice also demonstrated the mountain dulcimer.

We hope you’ll enjoy this video interview and we look forward to bringing you another soon!

Ellen King Rice’s website is www.ellenkingrice.com and it’s well worth exploring.

Steamboat Alliance Announces Schedule of 2021 Litter Cleanup Events

Steamboat Alliance logoLocal residents Rob Helms and Laura, and Warren Westrup are part of a group known as the “Steamboat Alliance.” The Alliance has recently announced a series of roadside litter cleanup events for 2021. You may have seen this group picking up litter along Steamboat Island Road and elsewhere.

The events are fun, providing a nice opportunity to enjoy the outdoors and do some good at the same time. All litter pickup equipment is provided; you should dress according to the weather, bring some gloves, sturdy footwear, something to drink, and a snack.

The events typically begin at 9 AM and end at 12 noon, and you’re welcome to leave any time before noon if you need to.

With some exceptions, the group generally meets up at 9 AM in the gravel lot across Steamboat Island Road from the Steamboat Tennis & Athletic Club. They then carpool to the cleanup location, if necessary.

All dates are subject to change, but here are the planned dates as of this time:
Saturday, April 10th
Sunday, April 25 (call Laura Westrup at (360) 915-6662 for the meetup location)
Saturday, May 8th
Sunday, May 23 (call Laura Westrup at (360) 915-6662 for the meetup location)
Saturday, June 12th
Sunday, June 27 (call Laura Westrup at (360) 915-6662 for the meetup location)
Saturday, August 7th
Saturday, October 9th
Saturday, November 13th
Saturday, December 11th

On April 10th, you will have a choice of two cleanup locations.

The best way to keep up with the Alliance’s plans is to join their group on Nextdoor. Click on this link. Or go to Nextdoor’s Groups page and search for “Steamboat Alliance.”

You’ve probably already seen us, picking up litter alongside area roads.

Annual Meeting Reviews 2020, Elects New Board Members, Discusses COVID Vaccines

This year’s Annual Community Meeting began with two videos. One highlighted the activities of the Griffin Neighborhood Association and its partners, in 2020 and the other is entitled “Coping with COVID.”

A required bit of business at each Annual Meeting is the election of Board members in positions whose terms of office have expired. This year we are grateful that several board members have allowed themselves to be nominated for a new term. Those were joined by three new Board members.

Returning Board members are:
Katherine Ball
Michael Ball
Paul Frindt
Michelle O’Dell
Mike Reavis
Joan Thomas

New Board members are:
Jan Robbins
Rick Robbins
Biene Wood

Many thanks to departing Board members Jan Hopwood and Dave Shuett-Hames. Your service to our community is greatly appreciated.

For this year’s meeting, the keynote speaker was Danny Veenhouwer, PharmD, MBA, Senior Manager Pharmacy Services at Providence St. Peter Hospital. Mr. Veenhouwer presented information and answered our questions about COVID vaccines.

We were privileged Mr. Veenhouwer was able to take time out of his evening to address the community on this very timely topic.

2020 was the Griffin Neighborhood Association’s thirtieth year! We are grateful for the support from all our neighbors and we’re looking forward to 2021.

Virtual Annual Meeting of the Griffin Neighborhood Association, Thursday, February 18

Each year the Griffin Neighborhood Association convenes an Annual Community Meeting. This meeting combines some Association business required in its bylaws with an opportunity to present a program of interest to the general community. This year we have planned an online meeting.

The meeting begins at 6:30 PM, when we will present two video programs. One is the GNA 2020 Year in Review, where we’ll recap some of the Association’s activities over the last year. The other video, “Coping With Covid,” includes many neighbors’ contributions here in the Griffin area. Thanks to all of you who contributed images that describe how you are coping with the ongoing pandemic.

At about 7 PM, we will hold our annual election of Board members. Each year, half the board of directors’ positions must be filled, either with returning or new members. Only those currently-paid up members of the Association can vote in the Board election. If you have not yet made your annual contribution, you can do so online using a secure transaction at this link. Make sure you’re paid up before the Annual Meeting to vote in our Board election.

At about 7:15 PM, our keynote speaker will begin. Our keynote speaker is Danny Veenhouwer, PharmD, MBA, Senior Manager Pharmacy Services at Providence St. Peter Hospital, who will present information on “COVID Vaccines.” The differences, the availability, and the safety of them.

GNA Virtual Annual Community Meeting
Thursday, February 18
6:30 PM to 8:30 PM

Use this link to attend the Annual Meeting:
https://teams.microsoft.com/l/meetup-join/19%3ameeting_ZDViMmE1YjAtNzBlNy00Y2VkLWFiMTEtYjAyOTgzMjQxMTc1%40thread.v2/0?context=%7B%22Tid%22%3A%223db789f8-e3f1-45fd-ac6b-de5cea47e7bb%22%2C%22Oid%22%3A%22025428ce-9fac-476e-a9e1-6809ec591410%22%2C%22IsBroadcastMeeting%22%3Atrue%7D

A screen will appear that gives two options. Select “watch on the web instead’ (no need to install anything unless you are on your phone or tablet). Set back and enjoy the show! Simple as that.

The Annual Meeting will take place online as a live event using Microsoft Teams. As GNA President Mike Reavis explains, “This will be a little different than the Zoom sessions I am sure you are all familiar with.” For this event, there is no need for a camera or microphones on your part. Only the meeting host and our presenters will have the ability to speak, share their presentations, and have the option of turning on their camera.

“We are hoping this format will make it easier for everyone to attend the annual meeting and we will make a recording available after the event. As we all know, we cannot meet in person, so we are hoping this will be the next best thing.”

If you attend the meeting using a personal computer, you won’t have to install any software. Just attend it using a web browser. You can also choose to attend anonymously. If you attend using a mobile phone, you may have to install the Microsoft Teams mobile app, either from the Apple App Store or Google Play Store.

When you attend the event, you will find a Question and Answer tab on-screen, for you to type in questions during the meeting, and the presenters will then answer them.

For technical questions about what to expect with Microsoft Teams, please click this link.

We are looking forward to this year’s Annual Community Meeting. We hope you are, too.

Join Us for Tree Lighting at Companion Cove

Click the image for a larger version.

Come join us Saturday, December 5th, to watch a tree lighting ceremony from the comfort of your own vehicle. Join in singing Christmas carols with Santa and Mrs. Claus.

Saturday, December 5
6:00 PM
Companion Cove

On Saturday, we will also be collecting non-perishable food items for the satellite food bank at St. Christopher’s Community Church. Please bring something to donate.

Then, beginning December 6th and continuing until Christmas, children can make an ornament and hang it on the Griffin Neighborhood Christmas tree at Companion Cove (please hang ornaments on the lower branches).

Presented by the Griffin Neighborhood Association.

See you on December 5th!

Trunk or Treat This Halloween at Griffin School and Companion Cove

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Join the Griffin Neighborhood Association and Griffin PTO for a Trunk or Treat on Halloween evening. This drive-through event will be held at the Griffin School and Companion Cove parking lots.

Griffin School and Companion Cove
Sunday, October 31
5:00 to 8:00 PM

Social distancing will be observed and we ask you remain in your vehicle. Non-costume masks are required.

Donations of bagged candy are needed. If you would like to donate, there are drop off boxes at Griffin School, Griffin Fire Station, and Companion Cove. Please make your candy donations by October 28th.

Trunks wanted! If you’re interested, contact Becky at furacres@gmail.com. Prize for the best trunk?

New Local Residents Amy and Streiter VanQuaethem Join VanQuaethem Family Chiropractic

2020 has certainly been a crazy year for this world and for our family!  In March, my husband, Streiter, daughter, Laney, and I headed on spring break from our Maui home. What was supposed to be a fun vacation turned into a complete shift in life as we knew it. While we were enjoying the Florida beaches, Coronavirus started taking its toll. My father in law had a sudden stroke here in Olympia, and Florida was closing, so we flew to Washington to be with our family. Thankfully, he recovered. However, he would be unable to practice Chiropractic again.

After much consideration and a couple of trips home to Maui, we decided that, during this challenging time, it was more important to be near family. We joined our enthusiastic brother, Dr. Taylor VanQuaethem’s office in West Olympia and started our new practice here. It has been humbling to go from a large practice that served the islands of Maui and Lanai to a practice that we are building from scratch. We are optimistic for the future, appreciative of our new life, and grateful to have found a great home on the beautiful Steamboat Peninsula.

Update: Local residents Amy and Streiter VanQuaethem have moved from VanQuaethem Family Chiropractic to Steamboat Island Chiropractic, located at 6541 Sexton Drive NW, Ste A201, Olympia, WA 98502. That is above Urraco Coffee. They are accepting new patients. Call (360) 943-6206 to schedule an appointment. The Griffin Neighborhood Association is happy to welcome the VanQuaethem family to the Griffin area and to add Steamboat Island Chiropractic to our local business directory.

Election Day is November 3, Ballots to be Mailed Oct 8

It’s election season! Here’s what you need to know this year to vote smart.

Important Dates

Click on the image for a larger version.

To the right is a table from the County Elections website. Ballots will be mailed October 8. The ballot drop boxes will be locked at 8 PM on November 3.

Your Voter Registration

If you are not yet registered to vote there’s still time. Click here to register online. The last day to register online is October 26, but you should plan to register as soon as you can. After that date, you can register all the way up to Election Day. For more information about voter eligibility, updating your registration, or canceling it, see this web page. This page also contains information useful if you would like to update your voter registration because of a name or signature change.

If you have moved or changed your name, click here to update your current voter registration online.

You can confirm your voter registration status online or by calling the County Auditor’s Elections team at (360) 786-5408.

You can contact Thurston County Elections directly at elections@co.thurston.wa.us and by phone at (360) 786-5408. 711 Washington Relay. Visit ThurstonVotes.org for in person hours and
locations.

From October 14 though November 3 the Elections Office has a service center opened. It is located at South Puget Sound Community College Mottman Campus, 2011 Mottman Rd SW, Olympia.

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