Razor Clam Festival in Long Beach, Washington April 27 & 28, 2013

March 31st, 2013 by Susie Goldsmith

Are you looking for something absolutely unique to do April 26th -28th? Come to the Long Beach Razor Clam Festival! Oh the nostalgia!  My earliest memories of clam digging on the Long Beach Peninsula, when I was a toddler, were of cold, bare wet feet, soon to be numb, in the early morning. Out on the wide beach, in the wet sand, with my parents and two older brothers,  I trotted around looking for dimples in the sand.  “There’s one, Dad! There’s one, Mom!”  I was too little to dig.  My brothers had clam guns.  We got a gazillion clams and then, the inevitable. We had to clean the clams.  I was too little, for years, to touch a knife, and if you know me now, sometimes I am still too little to touch a knife!  But I had to rinse the clean clams free of sand under the cold tap water in the clam cleaning rooms at whichever old motels we stayed in.  My frozen fingers now matched my frozen, wet sandy feet! In the Boulevard Motel or The Lighthouse Motel…wherever our family could stay, the clam-cleaning rooms smelled the same–salty, slightly musty, very damp.  Back then, we could dig all the clams we wanted. So we would clean then for what seemed to me like hours. So the razor clams we loved so much would be ground up and made into clam chowder.  I turned the crank of the old food grinder–I still have one. I was never too little to grind clams.  The razors made the best clam chowder in the world and my dad always took all the credit.  The fried clams he produced were always considered a  huge treat–way back then.  I remember Long Beach’s World’s Largest Frying Pan being used for frying clams.  It was clearly a good time.

Well- the GOOD TIMES ARE BACK!  They say 20,ooo people came to the 2nd Razor Clam Festival in 1941!  The last Razor Clam Festival was, we think, in 1968.  Well it’s BACK!  The first Razor Clam Festival in around 45 years will happen in Long Beach, WA on April 27 and 28 this year!  This event brings back such sweet childhood memories for me and perhaps it will be a new memory for you.

So who is the genius who re-created the The Long Beach Razor Clam Festival?  Well, Randy Dennis of The Dennis Company, who happens to be one of the State’s most inventive, entrepreneurial, forward thinking and nicest guys we will ever know!  Events of the Festival include:

Clam Festival Court–Francis O’Neil was the “Clam Festival Bathing Beauty” in 1948–the QUEEN of the court will be here to re-start the tradition!

Razor Clam Digging Lessons- You have to pre-register for Saturday and Sunday morning lessons in front of The Breakers Hotel.

WA Department of Fish & Wildlife will judge “Biggest Clam Dug” and “Best Looking Limit” for $100 prizes!

Chowder Cook-Off–Local restaurants will compete for “Best Chowder” Trophy accompanied by music from the North Coast Blues band.

There will be Tummy Warmer Stations at the Pavillion at the foot of the Bolstad Beach Approach with cookies, hot cocoa, coffee & tea.

Vintage Clam Festival postcards, t-shirts, mugs, magnets, the Official Razor Clam Festival Poster by Don Nesbitt and other swag will be available!

There will be street entertainment by Dennis Duck, the Beard’s Hollow Pirates and Queen L DeDa’s Mermaids downtown on Saturday!

There will be clam supplies, weather gear and more available at the Dennis Company in Long Beach on both days.

A Clam Gun Decorating Contest is being held at the local elementary schools, the Long Beach Boys & Girls Club with public voting.

This photo courtesy of Wayne O'Neil collection! This is the 1948 Clam Festival Court!

This photo courtesy of Wayne O’Neil collection! This is the 1948 Clam Festival Court!

So where will you stay for this grand occasion on the weekend of April 26th?  Currently there are openings at beautiful Boreas Inn, just a few short blocks from this much anticipated event!  You can re-warm your frozen tootsies and laze around after your invigorating participation in this historic event–the Razor Clam Festival in downtown Long Beach, WA!

So if you’re thinking of coming to this really fabulous event, make your reservations now!!!

 

No Pining over the Old Pine Tree — Spring Cleaning the Trees at Boreas Inn

March 12th, 2013 by Susie Goldsmith

We’ve seen a huge change today outside our front door!  At long last, there was Spring cleaning on the outside of Boreas Inn!  And we’re not pining over the loss. Our front courtyard contained this big old Austrian pine tree that had grown so tall and become ungainly.  We were afraid it would topple over.  In 1996, when we moved in, it was a pretty pine tree, planted with the best of intentions–but after growing another 30 feet high, it was dropping needles by the buckets and made winter darker in the courtyard.  It was dying…. Today, Arbor Care Tree Specialists from Astoria so very carefully took the tree down in tiny pieces with the work done so perfectly by Jon Fagerland, a brilliantly talented musician from The Holiday Friends Band who’s also a brilliantly talented arborist. There were power lines, cable lines, phone lines and nary a line was nicked.  Ropes and gentle chainsaw work made the removal of our pine look like a tree falling ballet.  We highly recommend Arbor Care Tree Specialists! They left the property without even a tiny bit of a mess.  While they cleaned as the limbs fell or were lowered to the ground, you would have never known what a disaster it was before they commenced the chipping and clean-up.  Many thanks also to Bernie from our local PUD#2 in Long Beach. He disconnected and reconnected the power lines and while here, topped three trees in our parking lot that were playing close to the  lines.  After the tree was down, Ed Strange of Strange Landscape (love that name!) brought over five potted golden bamboo plants which beautifully screens us from the $#@%&  house next door. The courtyard, the kitchen and Hideaway room are now much lighter and brighter. With the courtyard greening up for spring, the early morning sunshine will make for very pretty colors!  Only a little shade will remain.  All of this happened in seven hours!  Now all we have to do is pay for it.  Thanks to everyone for tolerating us on Facebook today. For some reason, this was an emotional experience.

We do have vacancies this weekend at Boreas Inn if you want a simple, luxurious, restful, food-filled weekend at the beautiful beach.  Maybe you will be able to see the Comet PanSTARRS if the skies clear.  If indeed we clear up at the beach, there is a great view of the comet with no city lights!

Now minus that big old pine tree!

Now minus that big old pine tree!

“Lost Weekend” at Boreas Inn & the Implications of Legalized Marijuana at B&B’s!

March 3rd, 2013 by Susie Goldsmith

The State of Washington has legalized marijuana and is working on administrative guidelines for distribution and sales.  The legalization of marijuana has marketing implications for the Bed and Breakfast industry, of that we’re sure.  B&B’s certainly are known for “Winemaker’s Weekends” and wine-tasting afternoons…but wait a minute! The rules have changed!

Nobody we know of has had the nerve yet to market a “lost weekend” theme for pot smokers and “green butter” eaters.  Our fantasies have left us giggling and wondering about what could, in reality, be a huge marketing advantage in the B&B business.  Cooking with “green butter” could leave willing participants wondering what happened to their weekend. Having pot sampling reminiscent of the cafes in Amsterdam has many of us wondering how that might be done.  Smoking is not allowed inside commercial buildings, but 25 feet from the inn, it is legal. But foods made with “green butter” certainly do not pollute the air!

In our “Lost Weekend at Boreas” fantasy, we can imagine guests ruminating, “We doblogcoupleonthebeach remember checking into Boreas Inn, having a blissful nights’ sleep in their amazing beds, eating their legendary breakfasts, dining out at The Depot, Pelicano, the 42nd Street Cafe, all on Saturday night, but more than that, we can’t remember a thing!”  Well–that’s  probably not going to happen, but then again, it could.  Would that be different than guests being intoxicated with alcohol?  Yes, it would be very different.  We do not have experience with super intoxicated guests so we don’t imagine that our pot-smoking, “green butter eating” guests would have inappropriate behavior.  Stoned guests would be peaceful and definitely more food-oriented and we certainly can cater to that! Would we have to transport guests to and from their culinary adventures if they are high? Yes, we would!  Is there potential for B&B’s to attract more guests? Yes, there is.  So the question is raised since we have a complimentary beer and wine license, meaning we can buy wine and beer and serve it to our guests at no extra charge, would that translate to marijuana too?  I suppose we will soon have answers! Until then, we can continue to dream up our “Lost Weekend at Boreas” themes.  And giggle.

Sunny in January for MLK’s Birthday Weekend!

January 15th, 2013 by Susie Goldsmith

Sometimes the weather is ridiculous.  Friends call from Portland, yesterday saying it was snowing, today it was foggy there just as it was in Seattle.  Today’s dawn, on the prettiest beach in Washington State, was full of crystal clear sunshine–it “heated up” to 55!  It stayed that way all day, while inland, the fog persisted and the stagnant air advisories made the news.  We realize that 55 isn’t toasty–but it’s certainly warmer than inland.  So we are indeed blessed, this January, with perfect beach walking weather and our loaner bicycles are yearning for a guest to give them exercise.  The Kite Museum and the Columbia Pacific Heritage Museum have fabulous exhibits right now, Cape Disappointment State Park is sparkling in the sunshine and who knows, the whales might be swimming by!  The North Head lighthouse is a great place to look for whales as well as the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center way up high on the bluff overlooking the Mouth of the Columbia River.  Or you can just stare out to sea and watch the seabirds and the waves and the crabbing boats dotted all over the sea. The fresh Rock Fish at the 42nd Street Cafe (with their new floor!) is melt in your mouth good and The Depot and Pelicano are always cooking up the freshest fish, oysters and clams. Oh yes, and the steaks…  Football, minus our Seahawks, will be blasting away on the now seven big screens this weekend at The Lost Roo, home of our favorite nachos.  Monday is January 21st, Martin Luther King’s birthday, and the weather report is for beautiful weather well into next week.  How fortunate are we to be living in such a place with so much to do even in the “dead of winter”, with our temporary, but treasured sunshine. Boreas Inn has rooms for you!  $50 gift certificate a The Depot for the next three night reservation this weekend!

Glorious Sunsets on Long Beach

We have the gift of unmatched sunsets at the Inn

Let the sunshine in!

Let the sunshine in!

The “Real” Santa Visits Boreas Inn -Long Beach, WA

December 20th, 2012 by Susie Goldsmith

It has never happened before.  A guest merely emerges from their bedroom for breakfast and the innkeepers are speechless and their eyes fill with tears.  These tears were of surprise and joy.  With almost a child-like wonder–our eyes must have been huge–two adults became children once again. On December 25, 2011, our only guests at Boreas Inn for Christmas morning were Lindley and Charlotte Mixon from Raymond, WA.  When they came in the front door, it did occur to us that he was a lovely older gentleman with a white beard and how ironic that it was Christmas Eve.  Being polite, we said not a word about the resemblance.  We were sure he’d heard it before. 

But only when he emerged from his room on Christmas morning for breakfast, did we truly hold our breath and respond with actual childhood glee that we were in the presence of Santa and Mrs. Claus.  Lindley was dressed in a red shirt, with suspenders holding up his trousers, and had a red hat on his head trimmed with white fur.  My first words to him were, “My goodness, Santa, you must be exhausted and very hungry! Did you have a busy night?”  Yes, this Jewish girl did say that…couldn’t help it.  Lindley responded that yes, it was a tiring night but he had a good rest and was very hungry indeed.   We posed in front of the Boreas Inn tree with Mrs. Claus, Charlotte, and I couldn’t resist a shot giving Santa a kiss.  Lindley has never played Santa professionally! Bill and I were truly moved by Lindley and Charlotte.  Lindley is an artist, a warm, loving man with phenomenal talent for throwing big pots and painting.  He is currently recovering nicely from open heart surgery.  So, sadly, Santa and Mrs. Claus won’t be with us this Christmas. We will miss them and keep in touch on Facebook. We will forever remember the wonderful holiday gift they gave to us a year ago.  The richness of life in our 16 years as innkeepers never fails to reward, surprise and enrich us.  Thank you, Lindley and Charlotte, for your friendship.  Take it easy this Christmas, Lindley! Get healthy and come back soon.

On Christmas morning, 2011, Lindley Mixon and his wife Charlotte, emerged from The Dunes Suite at Boreas Inn and really, truly Susie and Bill were with Santa and Mrs. Claus!

Where Have All the Mushrooms Gone?

October 20th, 2012 by Susie Goldsmith

Is it because of our (wonderful) warm dry spell on the  Long Beach Peninsula that lasted almost 100 days without much moisture?  Or is it because we are having our Wild Mushroom Celebration this weekend at Boreas that the higher power has halted the handsome King Boletus (porcini) mushroom from peaking up from the soil? Even last year, a very dry summer into fall, we had porcini’s and matsu’s.  Veronica Williams, our friendly forager and queen of the woods,  has been unable to find any mushrooms in her favorite productive spots.  We are sad. Maybe today will be the day, after a week of some moisture, that the beauties will show their domes and emerge from hiding. We can only hope! So it’s out with the dehydrated porcini’s and perhaps at Pelicano Restaurant tonight, we will dine on five courses of mushrooms–they just might not be WILD ONES!

We normally worship the King Boletus this weekend. Alas, the King is in hiding!

Wild Mushrooms Will Be Celebrated October 19-21, 2012 at Boreas Inn!

October 4th, 2012 by Susie Goldsmith

We are concerned about the lack of rain in the Pacific Northwest because with the rains come the beautiful, plentiful wild mushrooms.  Only a couple of tenths of rain have fallen, mostly as mist, since mid-July.  The chanterelle season, in and around the Long Beach, Washington Peninsula, was surprisingly good in spite of the dry weather.  But come rain or shine, we will be celebrating the Wild Mushroom  from October 19-21 for the 11th year of Boreas Inn’s Annual Wild Mushroom Celebration!  Veronica Williams, our “All Wild” professional forager will be available to take our guests foraging on Saturday the 20th.  She will also host a discussion in the Boreas living room that is open to the public on Sunday the 21st. She always brings dehydrated wild mushrooms to sell along with her Wild Mushroom cookbook. Please call if you’re planning on attending the very informal discussion at 11 a.m. on Sunday, the 20th!

Though we were booked up for this event for over six months, we had a cancellation, and the beautiful Pacifica guest room is open for this extra-special weekend.  $590 for two people includes 2 nights at Boreas, 2 lavish breakfasts including our five-course Wild Mushroom Celebration Brunch with Veronica on Sunday,  a five-course Wild Mushroom and matching Washington Wine dinner for two (with the celebration group!) at Pelicano Restaurant on the Port, all taxes and restaurant gratuity are also included.  Add an extra night at our $150 “Walk-in Rate”!  (Most of the guests have added a Thursday night to their weekend!) Mushroom foraging with Veronica on Saturday, the 20th, is $45 pp.  Call today to get our last room for this relaxing celebration of the wild mushroom extravaganza! This special is not listed on our reservation site, so if you book online, ask for the Wild Mushroom Celebration in your note to us and we will adjust your reservation for you!

Wild Mushrooms abound around the Long Beach Washington Peninsula!

Sunny Skies for the 4th of July in Long Beach, Washington

June 30th, 2012 by Susie Goldsmith

Pat Brown, weather anchor at ABC affiliate KGTV in San Diego stayed at Boreas a few weeks ago and we did not make her predict our weather!

We’re about to embark on July.   We can’t often brag about the Long Beach Peninsula being “hot fun in the summertime” as the song goes… but warm fun in the summertime is more like it!  The weather has been a big tease this spring and summer.  Beautiful warm days with clear skies and stunning sunsets…and then we wake up to murky skies.  Last night on Portland’s KATU weather, the prediction was for a rainy few days over the 4th of July. Today on KATU weather, the prediction is for clearing on Sunday and then an unbelievably long stretch of sunny skies.  How can the predictions change so quickly from those gloomy cloud weather icons with “rain” streaking south out of them like little silver needles to endless golden orbs crossed by a cute little stripe of “cloud” for 10 days straight?  How does a weather prediction change that radically that quickly??

Those who know me at all, understand that I am a fantasy meteorologist.  My avocation is weather and I am forever searching for forecasts and have become pretty good at predicting weather where I live.  I tend to be overly optimistic at times, however, which in the Pacific Northwest, is an OK virtue.  I constantly tell guests that the skies are going to clear, and based upon the barometric pressure, I am often correct. But I’m also often wrong. Northwest weather is tough to predict.  My biggest beef is that Portland and Seattle weather forecasters are so often incorrect in weather predictions for the coast, if that is, they even recall that the Long Beach Peninsula exists. These professionals don’t understand that when they are so wrong about the weather and predict rain, that visitors do not come to the beach and resort areas dependent upon visitors suffer from the inaccurate predictions. They should just call us on the phone and ASK us how our weather is before they blow it!

Speaking of “weather people”, we were tickled to have San Diego’s KGTV weather anchor Pat Brown and one of her best friends stay with us at Boreas Inn a few weeks ago.  They were so much fun!  I told her my fantasy about being a weather woman and she just smiled at me and said “really?”  Yes, really!!  Except here, being a weather forecaster requires being part omniscient and part snake oil salesman, able to easily slide from a rather dire prediction (if you like sun) to the complete opposite forecast quickly, articulately, without seeming to lose credibility, like last night’s’ forecast compared to this morning’s.  Very slippery, right?  Another down side of being a weather anchor she was saying is that you become known to everyone in their local area which makes it hard to go out of your house to do anything with out being recognized.   So being here was nice for her–she had some privacy to just be herself.  Until she went to Serious Pizza at Cape D State Park, where there was a family from San Diego…who recognized her!

Weather forecasters in the Pacific NW spend a lot of time being on the “Storm Team” when one snow flake is seen or one gust of wind exceeds 25.  “Storm Team Coverage” lasts for days sometimes and requires everyone to have their “Storm Team” parka’s and their “Storm Team” baseball caps and forces them to stand on cold bridges and overpasses getting spattered by passing cars as they “cover the storm.”  Yes, I now know that being on the “Storm Team” is not what it’s cracked up to be and can be totally exhausting both for the viewer and the brave forecaster on that cold windy “Sylvan Hill Overpass.”

Enough of my weather rant.  We are currently looking for a predicted long-ish stretch  of beautiful weather on the Long Beach Peninsula. The 4th of July and the next 10 days looks to be great, and Boreas Inn has rooms for you and magical breakfast cuisine. The Depot, Pelicano, Nanci and Jimella’s Market Cafe, the 42nd Street Cafe and the Lost Roo will provide luscious seafood, steaks and other local farm to table treats for your palate when you become hungry once again.  And don’t forget Serious Pizza! We just tried their tequila ice cream tonight after our wood-fired steamer clams and pizza.  Yum!

4th of July is Wild and Crazy in Long Beach, Washington

June 26th, 2012 by Susie Goldsmith

If you like 4th of July fireworks running continuously on 28 miles of beach, Long Beach is your spot!  Boreas Inn, Trip Advisor’s #1 B&B in the area still has some room for you to stay that even have a view of the fireworks! While the City of Long Beach fireworks display is terrific, it is often hard to tell which set of fireworks is the “official” display and which ones are the hundreds of private displays that run along the “World’s Longest Beach” in the very furthest Southwest corner of Washington State, where the Columbia River meets the Pacific Ocean. If you miss the Long Beach displays on the 4th, the Port of Ilwaco has a simply beautiful display over the Port on Saturday on July 7th!

Pyrotechnics is a rampant art form here in Long Beach, Washington, and for those who cannot get enough of the gigantic sparklers that abound on the 4th of July around the USA, the Long Beach Peninsula will give you the thrill you seek!  We promise!  We only ask that if you pack it in, you pack it out.  The Grass Roots Garbage Gang will be handing out garbage bags to all who come to the beach to play on the 4th of July and will then be conducting their post-4th clean-up starting at 9 a.m. on July 5th.  If you’d like to help, just show up on the beach approaches on the Peninsula on the 5th of July!  And who knows, maybe you will score some amazing Japanese tsunami find, like a rusted Harley complete with its crate, or maybe even the kitchen sink.  It’s sad but true.

Come to Long Beach, WA for the Best Fireworks in the Country!

The City of Long Beach has dumpsters for the tsunami junk, particularly the styrofoam that is floating in. So please come help with that!

Chinook Council Will Make Ancestral Canoe Journey June 12-15, 2012

June 8th, 2012 by Susie Goldsmith

Our dear friend, and treasured Boreas Inn guest, Kate Elliott, sits on the Chinook Indian Nation Council.  She sent me a press release about this amazing ancestral canoe journey that will take place next week, from June 12-15,  the Chinook Indian Nation Council will travel down the Lower Columbia River Water Trail in traditional canoes.  The route, starting from Cathlapotle at the Ridgefield Wildlife Refuge will include stops in Kalama, Mayger Dock/Clatskanie, Cathlamet, Elliott Point/Pillar Rock and Chinook Point/Fort Columbia.

There are still some seats available to paddle and spots on the ground crew available.  The Chinook Indian Tribal Council  is extending an invitation to every member of the Tribe and friends of the Tribe to their to join them on this historical canoe trip either in part or for the entire journey.

The decendants of Captain William Clark gave the Chinook Nation the canoe, Klmin (keth-min), pictured above,  in September of 2011.  This beautiful canoe replaced one of the Chinook Nation’s canoes that was used by the Lewis and Clark Corps of Discovery.  Following the gifting of Klmin,  http://www.chinooknation.org/press.html, the Chinook Council agreed to honor its maiden voyage with a journey on their traditional waterways.  The Chinook Council consists of eight members: Chairman Ray Gardner, Vice-Chairman Sam Robinson, Secretary/Treasurer Peggy Disney and Representatives Phil Hawks, Charlie Funk, Lisa Elliott, Jeremy Wekell and Kate Elliott.

Accompanied by other Chinooks and friends, the Chinook Council will spend three days and three nights traveling down the Lower Columbia River Water Trail.  This will be a celebration of the generous gift they received this past Fall and the great river that is still home to many Chinooks today.  In addition to Klmin, this journey will include the Chairman’s family canoe, Itsxut (its-woot), and the Snohomish tribal canoe, Blue Heron.   After spending Tuesday night in the Cathlapotle plankhouse, the Chinook Council and People will take Klmin out for a solitary introduction to the waterway early Wednesday morning.  They will then place all the canoes in the water and begin the journey.  The canoes will have a sendoff by the Friends of the Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge.

As the canoes travel down the river, Chinook families will host dinner and provide shelter for the travelers, much in the way of their Ancestors.  This week of sharing and commemoration will culminate in paddling down to Chinook Point on Friday morning to participate in the private Annual Chinook Nation First Salmon Ceremony.  For many years, Chinook have been working with the National Park Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Washington State Historical Society and other partners to promote the Lower Columbia River Water Trail.  To honor this partnership, the National Park Service and the Port of Ilwaco will be joining the last day of the journey in their own motorized boat.

This is an important and unique regional cultural event–one that is important for all of us living in this area to understand, and to participate in, if we can!  It is a deeply moving event for those of us living where the Chinook Tribe  flourished (in paradise!). Now once again our friends, the Chinooks, can share with us their gifts of centuries-old knowledge, culture, understanding and joy. They are a national treasure and we are hoping and praying that they will again, soon, achieve the federal tribal recognition that by virtue of their history and influence for centuries, they so rightly deserve.

For more information on media relations and coordination, please contact Kate Elliott, Councilwoman Chinook Indian Nation, Chair, Communications Committee, (425) 945-6744 kate.chinook@gmail.com.

For more information on the sendoff by the Friends of the Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge, please contact: Katie Harrison, Cathlapotle Plankhouse Coordinator.

 

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