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LIFRC Community Update                    

August 19, 2022
We have all been enjoying these glorious sunny days. After two years of COVID isolation, we have found ourselves busier than ever, spending precious time with family and friends.  Time always feels like it is passing by much too quickly when we are having so much fun.  Here we are with less than two weeks left in August.

It is in these fast-paced moments that it is so important to take time to slow down and look around at the beautiful place we call home, and the people around us who make it so special.  It was an honor to be able do this by thanking our donors, volunteers and supporters in person this month at our Summer Social. 
Every day is a reminder that Lopez is truly a MAGICAL place where we are making an impact together—creating lasting change by innovating and exploring new ways of working together.
—Barbara Schultheiss
Upcoming Events &
Volunteer Opportunities
Open Mic Poetry Event
Saturday, August 27 from 5:00-7:00pm
Soot & Bone Art Space—4223 Center Road, across from Sunset Builders Supply

LIFRC staff member and Voices & Visions leader Quaniqua “Khemistry” Williams will be holding space again this month for local poets, writers, and singers to share their work. Please sign up here if you would like to attend or perform.

To keep everyone as safe as possible, we ask that attendees wear masks during this event. A suggested donation of $10 supports future Voices & Visions events.
Call for Food Share Volunteers

Looking for a way to make a difference in our island community? The Food Share is seeking some special helpers:
  • Volunteers to drive the electric van off-island to Sedro Woolley every other week.
  • Volunteers to help unload shipments of food every Tuesday and Thursday morning. This requires the ability to lift 50 lb boxes safely.
If you are interested in getting involved, please contact
Program News

Summer Social

On August 6th, we gathered again for the Summer Social, our annual fundraiser dinner. Staff and volunteers transformed the Lopez Community Center into a festive venue to welcome LIFRC supporters.
The highlight of the evening was the presentation by novelist, essayist, playwright, and professor Rebecca Brown, who read excerpts from works including her latest book, You Tell the Stories You Need to Believe.

If you missed it, click here for a video recording of Rebecca Brown's reading with introductions by Barbara Schultheiss, Lexi Taylor and Kip Greenthal. Special thanks to Ken Kortge for producing the video.

You can read Barbara's welcome remarks here.
Guest speaker Rebecca Brown reads a selection of her work.
The meal focused on Lopez-grown meat and produce, with appetizers, sides and desserts by Tony Kuzemchak and Alyssa Yackley of Salty Otter Catering, salmon grilled by Dennis Rosenman, and bread and butter from Barn Owl Bakery. Flowers by Susan Bill brightened the tables.
LIFRC staff member Nicole Szostak and volunteer Lyn Sorensen prepare drinks as Greg Tuai and Benling Wong set tables for the event.
Volunteer Pam Weeks pours water; sockeye salmon is grilled and ready to serve.
We are grateful to have been able to gather once again with dear friends and supporters, and look forward to seeing you all again next year!

News from Youth Summer Programs

LIFRC camps and workshops are in their final weeks this month. Read on for some recent highlights.

Wool Weeks

Youth in the Wool Weeks course spent a week washing, dyeing, carding, spinning, and then weaving their yarn into finished projects... with plenty of breaks for beach time.

Tree Climbing

After a thorough schooling in the use of safety equipment, campers hit the canopy for sky-high thrills and treetop adventures.

Parent Tot

Parent Tot participants received a special visit from Samish Indian Nation member and Voices & Visions leader, Aurora Martinez (traditional name Sqwemey7ileshewó:t), who joined them at Odlin Park to share traditional storytelling and music.

Camp Huckleberry

LIFRC's popular summer day camp has been going strong, keeping young campers busy with fun, creative activities both indoors and outdoors.

Junior Camp Counselors

This year marked a new addition to Camp Huckleberry: the inauguration of the Junior Camp Counselor program. The role was inspired by one of last year's campers, who took the initiative to engage with younger campers by reading to them and started a trend of older campers supporting their younger peers. With the financial support of Lauren and Jamie Stephens, LIFRC hired 11 Junior Counselors this year. These youth have become a key component in the Camp Huckleberry experience.

When we stopped by the camp to interview three of them during their lunch break, it was clear that the job has been keeping them busy with fun challenges.
Three junior counselors on their break: Anaya Dupuis, Jack Bullock, and Ruby Cruz.
What got you interested in becoming a Junior Camp Counselor?

Anaya:  Last year they didn't hire Junior Camp Counselors. It was simply summer camp. Some of us campers started helping out, and the teachers started calling us Junior Camp Counselors. I really enjoyed that, so I wanted to do it again this year. It's a great experience: it's fun being with all the kids, and now it's an official job, too. 

Ruby:  I got interested because I'm good with kids. I have babysat before, and this is just like babysitting a lot of children at one time. And I think it's good job experience for the future.

Jack:  I know I'm probably going to have a job later in life, so it's good practice with a job interview now, so when I'm 18 I'll know what to do.

At this point in the interview, a page came through on the radio on Ruby's belt. She dashed off to assist Rose Prust, the lead instructor. 

Wow, they really keep you on your toes. Do you get called to come help pretty often? 

If it’s an emergency or just for something that they need help with, we do get called in.

Jack:  We also tell Miss Rose and the other instructors when we're coming in or going out, or when we need their help with a situation. Miss Rose is really supportive, so it's nice to be able to call her over on the radios with our secret code word: “alpaca.”

Has anything particularly unexpected or challenging happened so far?

Ruby, back from helping Rose
:  Well, today a goat jumped out of its gate and ran into camp. We were just playing red light, green light and the goat came running right up to us. The kids jumped into a play structure to hide.

Anaya:  They all went inside but then the goat climbed in there, too. They were startled at first but in the end everyone started cuddling the goat.

Jack:  It turned out to be a sweet goat.

Goats and all, would you want to do it again next year?

All: Yes!

Anaya:  I think it's just magical being here with the kids. It's really fun having multiple ages, because they look after each other and take care of each other. 

Adventure Seekers

The Adventure Seekers Nature Education Class met from July 12th-14th. Instructor Jenny Napatow led the class of 4- and 5-year-olds on ecological investigations across the island from Odlin Park to Spencer Spit and Hummel Lake, creeping through the lush understory of ancient Douglas Firs to listen to the many voices of the forest and delving into the mysteries of the dynamic tidal shore, peering under rocks, collecting treasures and tasting edible seaweeds.

One highlight of the class was an unexpected gift of books from the SeaDoc Society. Jenny had reached out to the SeaDoc Society for more information on some marine education topics that she planned to include in her class. The SeaDoc Society responded by donating a book for each youth in the workshop.
Young participants peruse their new books at the dock on Hummel Lake.
We are grateful to the SeaDoc Society for their generosity and to Jenny Napatow for sharing her reverence for the natural world with youth on Lopez.

Back-to-School Supplies Program

Lopez Family Resource Center and the Lopez Island School are partnering to bring school supplies directly to the classroom. Families can register to take part by paying $25 per child for classroom supplies. Scholarships are available, and families can also take part in our backpack, jacket, and shoes program.

Community members can sponsor a student to help ensure teachers have the tools to start the school year with success. $25 will support teachers with classroom supplies.

If you are interested in contributing, please contact
Our Partners


Are you a family member or caregiver of neurodivergent and/or disabled youth?

Through education, awareness, and advocacy, ALIGN (Advocates of Lopez Island Gathering for Neurodiversity) is working to create a society that does not disable the neurodivergent, but enables them—valuing their equal inherent dignity. 

We've teamed up with LIFRC and the Parent to Parent training program, and are hoping to facilitate Helping Parent Trainings November 2022 to support other parents navigating the school system, IEP process, and more. 

Interested? Please fill out this Parent Interest Survey

Questions? Please email
Support the next generation of leaders on Lopez.
Donate today

P.O. Box 732  Lopez Island, WA 98261
(360) 468-4117 

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Lopez Island Family Resource Center · PO Box 732 · Lopez Island, WA 98261-0732 · USA

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