Drum and bugle corps lacked punch
I was the baton twirler for an American Legion drum and bugle corps back in the 1950s. We performed and competed for a number of years. So it was with great anticipation that I attended the recent Eruption Drum and Bugle Corps performance at Roy Anderson Field.
As a spectator I felt the brass section, although they had a sweet sound, sounded timid, almost like they were afraid of outdoing each other. I was not alone in my thinking as a stranger aptly described their performance by saying “they lacked punch.” Drum and bugle corps can sound so thrilling; I know they can improve.
Being a former baton twirling teacher and contest judge, I paid particular attention to the twirling of flags and rifles. I must say that the twirler’s solo routine was impressive. It was well-timed to the music and beautifully executed.
City needs better response to emergency traffic
The recent accident on highway 16 at the Wollochet overpass, causing traffic to back up across the Narrows bridge, demonstrated once again the lack of preparation by the city to effectively manage the vehicle overflow through our town.
Soundview, Pioneer Way and Harbor View Drive quickly became extensions of the jam up on Highway 16 as drivers sought to bypass the accident by going around it through the Harbor. Compound this with the music at Skansie Park and you dramatically increase the problem. Additionally, the pedestrian walkways at the three-way stop at Pioneer Way and Harborview added to the slowdown. There were two Gig Harbor police officers at the park seemingly unaware of the mess on the streets.
How difficult would it be to have a plan in place that assigns one patrolman at this critical intersection to more effectively handle the traffic flow? Allowing a number of cars through at a time, controlling the pedestrian traffic to relieve the slowdowns caused by one or even two people crossing and stopping traffic.
These accidents on Hwy 16 occur frequently enough that having a planned response seems a reasonable course of action.
Harbaugh a tireless advocate for schools
I have been working in, and for, the Peninsula School District for almost 35 years. I attended Artondale as a child, graduated from Peninsula High, and since the 1990s I have been teaching, working and coaching for the district at five different middle and high schools. During this time, I cannot recall a more tireless advocate for our schools than Leslie Harbaugh.
I met Leslie when we were both parents of children attending Artondale. For PTA meetings, she was always the first to arrive, last to leave, and volunteered with a smile for the toughest jobs. She was instrumental in raising money for new playground equipment, recruiting other volunteers for different projects, helping with the Otter Fun Run and working in her child’s classroom. Even after her daughter ‘graduated,’ from elementary school I would often see Leslie at Artondale events, just there to pitch in. During the same time period she helped us at Kopachuck with Fit for Life and volunteered for the auction.
She continues to serve by giving time at the Peninsula School District Office, helping with initiatives, serving on the advisory counsel and now running for the school board.
I am grateful that Leslie Harbaugh has been there for our schools. Her long list of accomplishments serve as evidence that she is committed to making our district the best it can be. She will work extremely hard for our community. I am so appreciative of her desire to serve in this capacity.
Campaign civility important during election season
While I strongly feel we need change on our school board, and I don’t think Leslie Harbaugh represents that change, I also feel the tone of the campaign for Peninsula School Board position 4, has gotten a little harsh. Seriously people, can’t we disagree without being disagreeable?
Have I been disappointed with decisions the school board has made in the past? Yes, several times. Was I often irritated with the behavior of our former board president? Yes, definitely. And while I absolutely think Harbaugh represents more of those same issues and will not be voting for her, I also don’t feel the need to attack her personally.
I don’t know much about the other candidates, Zachary Smith and Garth Jackson, but they both seem well qualified. Based on their experience and positions, they both would likely be committed advocates for our children and excellent representatives of our community on the school board.
The important thing, though, is that we all be civil to each other. I don’t think Leslie Harbaugh is our best choice for school board, but I will still treat her with the respect she deserves as a human being.
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