These are the two pictures that were requested for the Puget Sound Clear Air Calendar this year. Many who read this are on the mailing list and will receive this free calendar late this year. This will be my 4th or 5th? year in the calendar for a good cause.
Saturday, October 31, 2009
Still unemployed, but using this time to learn and grow and explore options before a new committment takes up much of my time.
Jim and I have started the Kitsap Beach Watchers program through the WSU Extension. This is the first time this program has been offered on Kitsap and while the "start-up" situation shows in the organization and coordination of the initial classes, I have hope it will settle in and be as strong a program as promised. Take a minute and check out the site: http://kitsap.wsu.edu/beach_watchers/index.htm.
This first section of the year long program meets on Fridays for five weeks. If we are able to go straight through we can complete the entire course within a year. If other obligations get in the way we can pick up the other sections as we are able.
In exchange for the classes we will owe 100 hours of volunteer time over the next couple years but from what we are seeing the volunteering will be very rewarding and there are many options for what type of volunteering we will do.
I'll get some pictures from our field trips and post those along with updates as we go along.
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
For those of you who heard Abby's deep bark this morning, there was a very good reason.
We went to the road to get the newspaper, then across the road to our little woods. Abby's noise instantly went up in the air, the hair on her back stood straight and she started to bark in a noticeably deeper voice.
Abby continued to bark with her nose held high but she didn't venture off the dirt road into the woods. I was sure she had scared a deer and it was now gone so started calling her to head back to the house. I was sure she was annoying the neighbors at this point so enough was enough. Abby stood her ground and just as I was starting to walk away a big black blob slid down one of the trees and started moving through the underbrush. I turned back to get a closer look and a black bear was calmly, but quickly, moving through the woods and into the open back yard of our neighbors.
Hey, Shilo and Neal; have you seen our neighborhood bear?
Although north Kitsap is home to a large bear population we seldom see them in this close and I haven't seen one in our yard since the first couple years we lived here. I wanted to call the bear back and let it know it was welcome to live in our woods but for now it is gone and that is probably best; there are wilder areas where the bear will be happier.
Saturday, October 24, 2009
This little girl was the beach greeter the other day; just couldn't resist her fall colors in front of the beach grasses.
Saturday, October 17, 2009
View from Suquamish, east toward Indianola and the "other side" - about Shoreline.
Friday, October 16, 2009
Thursday, October 15, 2009
The 2009 Tourism Summit was packed with a variety of people involved in tourism; government officials, business owners, chamber representatives and more. Speakers were both local and one came from Wyoming.
The agenda was filled with great general sessions and relevant breakout sessions. I would have liked to attend all nine offerings but had to pick three, one during each breakout. I am not a great "sitter" but I sat through a full day of programs fully engaged and wanting more.
The theme was "New Economy - Low Budget - High Tech - Growing Trends". Right on target for today - everyone left with things they could apply to their businesses immediately. I thought I was up to speed on social networking but I learned new tricks and some new technology. Did you know that if Facebook was a country it would be the fourth largest country in the world and it is growing faster than any country!
Any tourism organization or business not making full use of social networking (Facebook, Twitter, etc) is behind the curve and missing out on one of the best, free tools available today. I am even more impressed now that I learned more ways to make the networking tools target visitors and get the word out.
I could go on and on about the summit but here is a link to the informaiton. At the bottom of the page are some PDFs of some of the presentations.
One of the themes was Culinary Tourism. There was considerable discussion of what is being done and what can and should be done to fully take advantage of this growing trend. But nothing speaks better than showing what can be done . . .
Posted by Kitsap Images at 9:07 AM
Monday, October 12, 2009
I've followed the conversations on branding Kitsap (County or Peninsula). Actually I've followed it over the 8 years I was involved in tourism and the subject came up many times.
First, I strongly believe that any marketing effort needs to be for the Kitsap Peninsula. There are counties everywhere. The word "county" is in no way unique, enticing, or welcoming. "Peninsula" says water, accessible (not an island), has romance and intrigue. From a tourism point of view the word, "Peninsula" is an invaluable tool that very few can claim. Regional or geographic marketing is getting a lot of attention and proving far more effective than "city" or "county" or "state" marketing.
Tourists don't care about imaginary lines across the highway. They do understand crossing a bridge or taking a ferry. They know they have arrived somewhere when they land on the "other side" of a beautiful ferry ride or wide expanse of steel and concrete. Crossing water is something very few can claim. Branding the "Peninsula" would take more coordination and collaboration but how amazing if Kitsap could move beyond the few collaborative efforts (the peninsula wide Museum brochure and others) to a truly peninsula wide effort to market the area.
Back when Kitsap 20/20 was being developed a lot of community members, leaders and government officials gave a lot of their time to develop a "plan" for Kitsap. It was primarily "county" but there was extensive discussion, especially in the tourism committee, about "peninsula". There was also a sub committe on marketing that took on the task of "branding".
The brading that came out of the Marketing committee was "Kitsap, Soul of the Sound". It has a nice sound and was based on all of the following and more - I don't remember the long list of thoughts:
- Home and burial place of Chief Sealth (Seattle)
- Music, waterfront concerts a part of every community.
- Heritage includes all things northwest: timber industry, maritime industry, fishing industry, military.
- Cultural diversity: Native American plus multiple other ethnic groups that settled here.
- Surrounded by mountains and water and natural beauty.
- Access to one of the most beautiful large cities, and one of the most beautiful, remote National Parks.
All that work and here we go again, spending time and money to again "create" a "brand". Money that will take away from actually marketing.
Kitsap is uniquely special. We are not a county with boundries on four sides bordering other counties. Kitsap is literally the "Great Peninsula" (the real name) surrounded by some of the best that nature and man have created. We are an electic collection of wonderful communities, each a chapter in the Kitsap story. We are almost completely surrounded by water and nature and we are a natural recreation area. We have so much to offer. I hope that any new "branding" effort captures the uniqueness of Kitsap and doesn't fall back on the over used terms that could describe most any area across the county.
Soul of the Sound - at least add it to the conversation.
Sunday, October 11, 2009
Thursday, October 08, 2009
If you haven't been to the hotel it is worth stopping by just to enjoy the beautiful art collection.
The Lobby is warm and welcoming and full of wonderful pieces of Native American art.
Tuesday, October 06, 2009
Today was a very interesting "unemployment" day. I stated with my unemployment orientation; how to be successfully unemployed. All the rules, timelines and important points to make sure you get your check and don't run into trouble during the whole process. It was actually a very informative and well presented class; completely full. I found myself in good company with a variety of newly unemployed individuals.
I got home and found I had received my first direct deposit unemployment check but better yet I got two serious inquiries about my photos and a friend sent me some suggestions on ways we could colaborate on work projects.
I sent out more requests for networking meetings and got some appointments.
Self employment is looking more and more like the right direction and at this point I have too many ideas jumping around in my head and need to narrow them down into something defineable. More networking should help me sort things out.
Tomorrow; leave the house around 8 AM - home by 12:30 and then a meeting at my house in the afternoon.
So far this has been a very positive process; so many good business friends have been amazingly supportive. Thank you to everyone who has sent a recommendation on LinkedIn, taken time to meet with or scheduled a meeting with me and all those who have just been "friends". A special thank you to those who have sent business my way - you are all amazing friends.
Sunday, October 04, 2009
These are a few of the photos she is choosing from; there are more on my Facebook page if you want to "vote".
It was very fun spending the day with Natasha and I was honored she asked me to take her senior photo.