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A few days before Thanksgiving, our annual crab pot tree was assembled with help from the Port of Ilwaco crew.

tree

lifting by crane

lifting by crane

pots

City Hall got decorated, as well.

City Hall got decorated, as well.

After Thanksgiving, Bruce Peterson and a couple of helpers strung the lights on the tree.

ladder

lights

The decorations were hung by the 1st of December…

floats

And the tree lighting festival took place on December 3rd.  It is always held on the first Saturday in December.

We had a late afternoon meal at Salt Pub to ready ourselves for the 5 Pm event.

pub

We were not as sad as we look.

We were not as sad as we look.  We were having a thoughtful moment for a friend who is not well.

our view

our view

the bar at Salt Pub

the bar at Salt Pub

As dusk fell, the restaurant filled and our mood lifted.

As dusk fell, the restaurant filled and our mood lifted.

downstairs window, Salt Hotel

downstairs window, Salt Hotel

We departed into a drizzle to walk one block to the crab pot tree.

Salt Hotel Courtyard

Salt Hotel Courtyard

Two doors east of Salt, Time Enough Books.

Two doors east of Salt, Time Enough Books.

Time Enough Books

Time Enough Books

Salt

Salt

Salt Hotel

Salt Hotel, north side

and south side

and south side

gathering by the tree in increasing rain

gathering by the tree in increasing rain

The suspense is always great on a rainy tree lighting evening.  Bruce had gotten a generator to try to make sure the tree lighting worked.  Last year, during rain and big wind, the lights fizzled out after a short while.

suspense

suspense

success!

success!

The world’s shortest fireworks display briefly seemed as if it would be a non display, as the wet fuse refused to light.  Karla from Time Enough Books was the official fireworks launcher.  And then, another success.

firework

firework2

firework3

It was an extra long display this year of at least three bursts, possibly losing its place as a record breaking tiny fireworks display.

Just one carol was sung because of increasing rain.

Just one carol was sung because of increasing rain.

Our friend Ernie

Our friend Ernie

Hardy beach folk

Hardy beach folk

must be magical

must be magical

We were thanked and given a blessing to go on down to the port shops and restaurants.

We were thanked and given a blessing to go on down to the port shops and restaurants.

tree and lightpole with crab decoration

tree and light pole with crab decoration

walking down to Waterfront Way

walking down to Waterfront Way

Salt Hotel

Salt Hotel

Salt co-owner Layla

Salt co-owner Layla

Salt Hotel lobby

Salt Hotel lobby

inside, stocking for Salt friends and staff

inside, stocking for Salt friends and staff

The Ilwaco High School Jazz Band performed carols in the outdoor patio by Time Enough Books and Purly Shell.

jazz

Ilwaco High School Jazz Band

Ilwaco High School Jazz Band

in Time Enough Books

in Time Enough Books

our local independent bookstore

our local independent bookstore

Santa and Mrs Claus always appear at Time Enough on crab pot tree evening.

Santa and Mrs Claus always appear at Time Enough on crab pot tree evening.

Karla and Peter, proprietors, and Karla's sister, Kathy

Karla and Peter, proprietors, and Karla’s sister, Kathy

a bookish threesome

a bookish threesome

te3

Time Enough Books

Time Enough Books

We strolled further on to visit other port businesses.

OleBob's Café, named after two friends named Ole and Bob.

OleBob’s Café, named after two friends named Ole and Bob.

Purly Shell Fiber Arts

Purly Shell Fiber Arts has a cozy fireplace and usually two poodles assisting customers.

Purly Shell

Purly Shell

spinning wheels

spinning wheels

Just past Purly Shell and the Port Office, we visited our dear friend Don Nisbett’s art gallery.

Don Nisbett Gallery, always popular

Don Nisbett Gallery, always popular

Don's gallery has his art prints, tiles, hand painted glasses, magnets, and more.

Don’s gallery has his art prints, tiles, hand painted glasses, magnets, cards, and more.

Our great friend and Don's wife, Jenna

Our great friend and Don’s wife, Jenna (who recently had shoulder surgery)

Don and Jenna....Lower right is peach kuchen which I forgot to try!

Don and Jenna….Lower right is peach kuchen which I forgot to try!

Jenna and her elf helper

Jenna and her elf helper

Jenna says she is going to bring me some of these tomorrow.

Jenna says she is going to bring me some of these tomorrow.

Jenna also had hot chocolate and more cookies.

The gallery also offered hot chocolate and more cookies.

Further along, the new Riverszen Yoga Studio was having an open house with many treats for guests. The space is big and empty with plenty of room for yoga and stretching classes.  The building once housed the much missed Pelicano Restaurant.

river

home of Riverszen Yoga

home of Riverszen Yoga

We returned to Time Enough Books to get photos of Jenna’s elf friend with the Clauses.

clauses

Our very good friend Scout loves the bookstore's customers.

Our very good friend Scout loves the bookstore’s customers.

Scout

Scout

Karla and Scout's Santa photo

Karla and Scout’s Santa photo

Four month old puppy gets a photo, too.

Four month old puppy Ruby gets a photo, too.

Awhile early, the entire Ilwaco High School Jazz Band had had their photo taken with Santa.

photo courtesy Missy Lucy Dagger Bageant

photo courtesy Missy Lucy Dagger Bageant

The crab pot tree will stay in place and be lit in the evenings for the rest of the holiday season, so do come on down and browse Time Enough Books, say hello to Don Nisbett, buy a knitting friend some soft and colorful yarn at Purly Shell, have a late afternoon meal at Salt Pub, enjoy the view of the marina and admire the quintessentially Ilwacoan Dungeness crab pot tree.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The meander line is the border between the city and the port of Ilwaco that follows what used to be the riverbank.  I’ve tried to analyze why I am so fascinated with what is, basically, long grass, brambles, and sometimes a ditch:  When I walk it, I am able to clearly imagine it as it once was, waterfront with waves lapping up from the Columbia River.

The new and old photos of Ilwaco, below,  neatly show the meander line now and back when it was the Columbia River and Baker Bay shoreline, before the port was built. Our own place was waterfront.  The port parking lots and buildings were built on fill in the 1950s and now the water is about a block and a half from my back yard.  The two straight streets shown in the photo are Spruce Street and Lake Street, running east-west.  (West is at the top of the photo.) These aerial views demonstrate why the meander line allows for two extra short streets (Main and Eagle) intersecting with 2nd SW at the west end of town. The meander line slowly veers to the south as it goes west…allowing for those two extra streets. 

now

now

old

then

From a history of the Port of Ilwaco by Jennifer Ott:

“In 1948 the Port worked with the Army Corps of Engineers to have a new channel dredged to deep water in the river, on the west side of Sand Island. In 1951 the Port built an 1800-foot pile, timber, and stone dike to protect the moorage basin.

The River and Harbor Act of 1950 authorized the Army Corps of Engineers to build a breakwater, dredge a 20-acre moorage basin behind the breakwater, and maintain the west channel around Sand Island.

The Port agreed to provide land for the work, build access roads, improve the Port’s sewer system, and maintain public moorage facilities. The Port also provided land on which the Corps of Engineers could deposit the dredge spoils. Although the Port did not own all of the land surrounding the moorage basin, the commissioners authorized the placing of the dredge spoils along the waterfront, thereby building up all of the lots behind a seawall.

The Corps of Engineers completed their work in December 1957 and the Port served as a center for a thriving recreational boating, sport fishing, and commercial fishing and crabbing center in the 1950s and 1960s.” 

view

another aerial view

Beginning in 2012, I began to photograph the buildings and landscapes along the meander line.  In this gallery, we walk from west to east.
Thanks to Allan for going out on a cold damp day in late December to get photos to complete the gallery.
If you click to embiggen a photo, you will be rewarded with back and forth navigation arrows.

 

 

Saturday, 9 January 2016

Our good friend and sister-garden-blogger Ann Amato-Zorich came to town.  We took the opportunity to check out the very soft and mostly unadvertised opening of the pub at Salt Hotel, something we had eagerly been awaiting.  (Call 360.642.SALT for pub hours, which are variable at present.)

salt

Allan and Ann approach the courtyard

Allan and Ann approach the courtyard


Owner Julez Orr leading us to the entryway

Owner Julez Orr leading us to the entryway


view from the lower level

view from the lower level


the lower level

the lower level

Julez assured me that anyone who could not climb the stairs to the second floor bar level would be able to dine at ground level in this cozy room.

upstairs pub

upstairs pub


the view from our window table

the view from our window table

Paula Anast of Round 2 Design  did much of the interior design work for the hotel and pub.  Her description from LinkedIn:

Interior design.
stop burning piles of wood…use it!
look at the existing…imagine the future!

Specialties:Re use, Re Purpose, Re Think

Jacob Moore of Jacob’s Hammer Custom Metal Work (whose spouse is the baker for the beloved Pink Poppy Bakery) welded the tables and stools.

with Ann at a window table

with Ann at a window table


view from our table, southwest

view from our table, southwest


view from our table, southeast

view from our table, southeast


One could linger for hours with a view like this.

One could linger for hours with a view like this.


the menu

the menu


a spicy Bloody Mary

a spicy Bloody Mary


smoked tuna melt sandwiches and oyster deviled eggs

smoked tuna melt sandwiches and oyster deviled eggs…delicious.

Our dear friend Devery turned up and sat with us and ordered the stew.

pub stew

pub stew: Devery proclaimed it to be delicious.


Allan and Devery lined up to pay

Allan and Devery lined up to pay

The food portions were so ample and so reasonably priced that I found myself telling co-owner Laila that I thought the prices were too low!  Perhaps the bar tabs will enable the food prices to remain so astonishingly reasonable.

I am so pleased to see folks already sitting at the bar, and the Coast Guard jacket warms my heart because we love our coasties.  We enjoyed the ambience at Salt Pub and plan to return soon.

our Ann

our Ann

We could have lingered longer; however, Ann wanted to be back to her lodging near Naselle before dark, and she wished to purchase a crab next door at OleBob’s fish market.

at OleBob's

at OleBob’s

Ann was looking forward to cleaning the crab, which takes her back to her family childhood, and a pleasant conversation about crab-shaking (a prized skill at the local fish processing plant) ensued.

Before dusk we had time to visit Time Enough Books, just next door to OleBob’s.

Our good friend Scout greeted us.

Our good friend Scout greeted us.

There is one copy left of our friend Debbie Teashon’s excellent Gardening for the Home Brewer, and Karla has ordered more. 

 

Karla with the important reference book that I acquired.

Karla with the important reference book that I acquired.

As we were chatting about books (with Ann and I both confessing that we still need to read Robert Pyle’s Wintergreen), the subject turned to local books, and Karla realized that Ann is the daughter of  Frank Amato, who has published many of the fishing books that Karla carries in her maritime section.

a book making new friends: Karla and Ann and one of Frank Amato's books

a book making new friends: Karla and Ann and one of Frank Amato’s books

The onset of almost dusk stopped us from going further down the row of shops to Don Nisbett’s art gallery.  With just three portside places visited, we had made an afternoon of good memories.

 

 

 

One of our favourite parts of the Saturday Market at the Port of Ilwaco is seeing the dogs with their people.  The Saturday Market runs from the first Saturday of May to the last Saturday of September along Waterfront Way.  All photos are biggifiable.

From the first Saturday in May till the last Saturday in September, the market is in session from 10-4 along Waterfront Way at the Port of Ilwaco.  We managed to attend most Saturdays (unless gardening events interfered).  Here are our favourite photos of 2015.  The photos are embiggenable.

Salt Hotel in 2015

We have been thrilled to watch the transformation of the old Harbor Lights Motel into Salt Hotel.  Located right on the port, Harbor Lights had been closed for several years.  It used to have a dive-y sort of bar and restaurant (some might disagree, but that was our impression, at least in its latter years). Early in 2015, Julez and Laila, local owners of Skookum Surf Company, decided to take on the project of bringing the hotel back to life.  We followed the process with interest and anticipation and look forward to the opening of the Salt pub and social space.

Our friend Debbie Teashon of Rainyside Gardeners stayed at Salt for the garden tour in July and loved it.  We hope that Salt Hotel will be a great success and that many folks discover it in 2016.  Perhaps you will have a look at their website and book a room.  I think that this bunk room, for a group of friends, is especially fun.

If you happen to be reading this post on the morning of New Year’s Day 2015, you could toddle on down to Salt Hotel for their “Recovery Day.”

salt

Here, we follow some of the progress of Salt Hotel through 2015, its first year in its new incarnation. Click on a photo to embiggen, and you will get handy back and forth arrows.

Tangly Cottage Gardening Journal

We care for the curbside gardens along Howerton Avenue in Ilwaco.  Originally, sometime around 2003, the garden beds were installed and planted up with things that proved to be much too tall: pampas grass, New Zealand flax, Arbutus, California wax myrtle.  In 2005, street trees (columnar pears) were planted. We were hired around that time to care for the bed to the north of Time Enough Books, and the job eventually evolved to being hired by the port to care for all of the gardens.  Our mission has been to add drought tolerant plant diversity that can hold up to the wind and to replace tall plants with low ones that allow good traffic sightlines.  The long drought of summer 2015 proved challenging for the gardens.  We especially wish to thank the businesses that let us hook up to their water: Time Enough Books, Bruce and Wendi Peterson and Salt…

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