Fox Island, WA is home to a
variety of public places and non-profit organizations. Tanglewood
Island is the most visible icon of the Fox Island area, with its
non-operational lighthouse, the Fox Island Nature Center features trails and
picnic areas traversing a wetland stream, the Fox Island Sand Spit with its
naturally occurring gravel formation in Case Inlet, the Nichols Community
Center and Fox Island playground, Boat Launch and Fishing Pier, located on
the easternmost tip of the Island.
The Nichols Center, 690 9th Ave.
Explore these areas via the links at left, and see what Fox Island has to
18 Years On The Web! June 11, 2014
marked the 18th anniversary of FoxIsland.net going online. Seems like it was only yesterday, when I first
published the original FoxIsland.net website in the wee hours of June 11, 1999. (see photo
That day a new online presence was
launched for Fox Islanders, and a new company was born; Dragonwyck Web
Design. From our meager beginnings and our very first customer Don and
Laura Musgrave, Fox Island's web presence has flourished.
now host to over 130 websites, and the website has a new domain name: FoxIslandWA.net
It started out as a few simple pages;
Island Organizations, Events, News, and Narrows Bridge Traffic cameras.
Today, with over 130 pages, it records a rich history of Fox Island's past
18 years, and we don't worry much about bridge traffic anymore.
Today, over 250,000 visitors later, this website has become the focal point and online forum for many
community issues over the years; from protesting tolls on the Narrows
Bridge, to stopping the 60 lot Fox Ridge subdivision from being built,
deterring the Navy from expanding it's beachfront laboratory, seeking action
on fixing the boat ramp, keeping Kopachuck State Park open, to helping rid the Island of the coyote problem.
Island News Facebook group has grown from a
handful of people to nearly 2,000 members, keeping Island residents informed
about what is going on around the island, and current issues that affect our
As we enter the next years, many
challenges lie ahead, but our website keeps us linked together in this
modern, real-time information age.
John Ohlson, Webmaster
Camp Miyajama - Fox Island's Girl's Camp
Camp Miyajama was a
girl's camp located on Fox Island, near Cedrona Bay in the 1920's. The
Japanese styled structure was originally built for a World's Fair in the
1920's, and moved to Fox Island when the fair ended.
This page from a Puyallup area girl's memory book depicted life at camp
during the week of May 2-3, 1925.
The building eventually burned down, and was never rebuilt, closing Camp
Girls in the photo are: Helen Snow, Merna Montgomery, Elizabeth Neace,
Mildred Meader, Irene Craig, Eunice Healey, Eleanor Smith, Mareta Cooper,
Faire Van Woert, Helen Read, Velma Goodner, Louise Chase, June[?] Barry
Santa Comes to Fox
Island! On a cold and windy night in December 2009, the volunteers from the Fox
Island Fire Department helped bring Santa Claus to the annual Fox Island
Tree Lighting ceremony.
Children gathered around
the bonfire sang Christmas carols while awaiting Santa's arrival. When
the chorus of Santa Claus is coming to town was sung, Santa arrived with
lights flashing and sirens blaring.
After candy canes were handed out, the crowd retreated
into the warmer confines of the Nichols Community Center, where the Wickline
Family Singers played their traditional "Down Home Country Christmas"
FICRA would like to thank the Fox Island firemen and
the many volunteers who helped make this great event possible.
FICRA Sponsors New Cub
Scout Pack 27 October 6, 2011 At the October FICRA meeting, the
FICRA Board voted unanimously to sponsor Cub Scout Pack 27,
to be based at the Nichols Community Center on Fox Island.
To date, 7
boys have joined the Pack, and all have already earned their Bobcat
badges! Their first outing will be to Camp Ramblewood near Sequim.
Fox Island boys ages 7 - 10 years old are encouraged to join,
our Pack 27 website for more information or call Scoutmaster John
Ohlson at 253-380-4100.
FICRA Sponsors Fox Island Boy Scout Troop
On November 29, 2007, FICRA became the proud sponsor of Fox
Boy Scout Troop 27, headquartered at the
Nichols Community Center on Fox Island. The new troop is
getting ready for another year of 'high adventure' outings, including
camping, hiking, climbing, canoeing, archery and more.
Boys aged 11 to 17 who are interested in
having fun in the outdoors are encouraged to join; contact John
Ohlson at 253-549-2701 or visit
Troop27BSA.com for more information.
Meetings are held at 6:30 PM on the second &
fourth Tuesday of the month. Bring a friend, and get ready for
Center Gets New Flagpole
On Saturday, March 3rd, members of Cub Scout Pack 202, Den 7
raised the new flagpole at the Nichols Center.
The cubs built the new flagpole from a fir
tree found on Fox Island, and they spent three months making it; stripping
the bark, polishing the wood, and applying varnish & hardware. The
old flagpole was blown down in a windstorm in February, 2006.
Once the new pole was raised, the Cubs
performed a flag ceremony, with a brand new American Flag, donated by FICRA.
Above: Pack 202's Cub Scouts hoist the new flagpole into place.
Left: Members of Den 7 performed the
flag ceremony; Assistant Den Leader Brandon Stevenson, Den Leader Doug Nilsen, Blake Paffile, Walker Carlson, Blaize Stevenson, Dan Sheppard and
Jonathan Nilsen. Not pictured: Bobby Blaser.
Center Gets New Deck
February 25, 2007 - Eagle Scout candidate Page Ollice of Boy
Scout Troop 212 recently completed his Eagle Scout service project - a new
deck for the Nichols Center. Expanding on the old design, the new deck
includes a 2' wider footprint, safer railings, and improved traffic flow
from the main door to the stairs.
Page Ollice, his brother and Father Larry
admire the completed work.
Nichols Center Gets New Doors
rainy Saturday recently, FICRA volunteers Tony Moore, John Arno and John
Ohlson installed three new replacement doors at the Nichols Center.
The old doors had become rotten at the bottom and needed
replacing, and one was warped so badly, the door latch would not stay
The Pierce County Fire Marshall required us to repair the
one door to maintain a safe exit, so we decided to do all three.
The new doors went in without a hitch, and will provide a
more secure entryway, and better fit to help keep the cold drafts outside.
Thanks Tony, John & John!
A New Bridge Sign For
has a new bridge sign!
After years of reliable service, the old bridge sign had seen better days,
and was broken, and in need of replacement.
Enter Paul Schneeman,
Fox Island Handyman and all-around nice guy.
Paul built a new sign from donated materials and added a second side to
the sign, for mainland-bound traffic. Now you can keep up with Island
happenings both coming and going from Fox Island!FICRA would also like to thank Paul for cleaning the gutters at the
Nichols Center, and for taking down the Fox Island Christmas Tree after the
Thank You Paul!
Cub Scouts Shea Brown, Garrett
Stephens, Alex Ohlson, and Ben Long admire the new tree.
Fox Island Cub Scouts Plant New
Christmas Tree For FICRA
In the summer of 2005, Cub
Scouts from Fox Island's Pack 202, planted a new Christmas Tree in front of
the Nichols Center.
In a few years, the tree
is expected to grow large enough to serve as the Christmas Tree for the Fox
Island community tree lighting ceremony, to be held on Saturday,
December 2nd. In the meantime, it will be
the 'little brother' tree to the traditional 20' tall one, which is
decorated by the Fox Island Volunteer Fire Fighters, and donated by Ketcham
Evergreens of Fox Island.
Editor's note: The 'Cub Scout Christmas
Tree' pictured at left was removed by FICRA's buildings committee in
2012, as it no longer 'fit in' with their new garden plans. It
has not been replaced to date.
Fox Island Girl Scouts Plan New
Girl Scout Troop 290, led by
Leader Lise' Ohlson is planning on planting a flower & shrub garden in
the circular area at right.
They are working on a service
project to help earn their Girl Scout Bronze Award.
Each year FICRA awards a $500.00 scholarship to a high school senior
whose parent or guardian resides on Fox Island.
Andrew Schneeman, 2008 FICRA Scholarship winner
2005 Tree Lighters Janet & Paul
2005 Christmas Tree Lighters were Janet & Paul Schneeman, of Fox
The Schneeman family moved from Auburn to Fox Island
in October 1999 because of Paul’s passion for sailing, boating and water
activities. As a registered nurse, Janet is a diabetes educator at Mary
Bridge Children’s Hospital. Paul recently launched his own business
“Specialized Woodworking” assisting people with their home improvement
Janet is FICRA's Secretary, and a volunteer for many
FICRA events. She helps at the Annual Easter Egg Hunt, the Tree
Lighting, the FICRA Fair, and is the Bingo Coordinator.
Janet recently said "I like volunteering at the
community center because I meet new people and feel like I am 'part of
the island' - especially doing activities with people who have lived on
fox island for many years. I love being behind the scenes at these
long-standing traditional island events." Janet's husband Paul
volunteers for the Fox Island Crime Watch. Congratulations to the
Santa Comes To Fox Island
On December 4th, Santa made his annual
visit to Fox Island to greet the children and hand out candy canes at the
traditional FICRA Tree Lighting ceremony.
Cub Scouts Lead Caroling Around Bonfire
Cub Scouts from Fox Island's Pack 202
helped lead the singing of Christmas Carols around the bonfire, prior to the
tree lighting ceremony. Fox Islander's Paul & Janet Schneeman lit the
tree this year.
Matt Snow, recipient of the
2006 FICRA Scholarship is congratulated by FICRA President John
Hank Henry was the 2006 FICRA Fair
FICRA President John Ohlson presents Andy Willis with
the $500.00 scholarship check at the 2003 FICRA Fair.
College Scholarship Awarded
The 2003 $500.00 FICRA scholarship was awarded to Gig
Harbor High School graduate Andrew Davis Willis son of Chris
'EZ' and Patricia Willis. Andy plans on
attending Seattle Pacific University.
Update on FICRA's
Nature Center Project
Scout Keith Buchanan admires the completed footbridge,
built with assistance from
Boy Scout Troop 282.
Although it may not look like it, lots has been going on
with our Nature Center over the past year.
Footbridge and Park Bench
installation was built by local Boy Scout
volunteers from Troop 282 in Gig Harbor.
Keith Buchanan headed up the footbridge project,
which created a 60' bridge over the stream which runs
through the property.
Stop by and see the progress. The bridge is now
completed, and all of the benches are installed.
Eagle Scout John Uehlin
headed up the Park Bench project, which placed 10 park benches along the trail at various points of interest.
bench is made from weather-resistant materials, and
features the names of donors who contributed $500 in the
fundraiser last fall.
and park bench
projectsarenow complete, with a
grand opening and dedication during the FICRA Fair.
Fox Island's two Garden Clubs; Sand & Soil, and The
Fox Island Garden Club have teamed up to help provide
plantings at the trailhead area, and will help coordinate the
installation of bird houses and bat houses being constructed by
Island volunteers with donated materials.
Scout John Uehlin (left) helps guide a
bench seat into place, with assistance from members of Boy Scout
Help Save Fox Island's Wetlands!
The 'Fox Island Nature Center' is a pristine
greenbelt, containing a small stream, and many forms of
The property is currently owned by FICRA, thanks to generous donations from Fox
Did It! By coming together as a community, we were able to
raise the necessary funds to make the down payment on our
cherished wetland nature park.
The property was paid off in 2010, and is now under
sole ownership of FICRA and the Fox Island Community.
Scout Candidate Mark McKinney recently completed his Eagle Scout service
project at the Nichols Center.
His project included removing the
flagpole, removing old nails and rotted wood, applying a fresh coat of
paint, replacing the rope and hardware, and building a new concrete &
tile base around the pole.
Mark (on left in photo) celebrated the completion of the
project with a flag raising ceremony at the May FICRA meeting, assisted
by one of his fellow scouts from Troop 212 out of Chapel Hill Church.
Mark, son of Fox Island residents
Marshall and Gretchen McKinney, is a student at Gig Harbor High
FICRA wishes to thank Mark for his
hard work and coordination of this project.
Soggy Egg Hunters Have a Great Time!
Several hundred Fox Island children braved the rain
and soggy grass to hunt for Easter Eggs in the 2005 FICRA Egg Hunt.
Over 3000 eggs containing candy, toys and prize tickets were quickly
snapped up by eager hunters.
With parents hovering nearby with
umbrellas and video cameras, the children splashed through the Nichols
Center grounds in search of the brightly colored eggs. A bake sale
offered a huge assortment of cookies, cakes and muffins to help raise
funds for FICRA. Several craft vendors offered their wares to the
FICRA would like to thank the
volunteers who helped make this year's Easter Egg hunt a success.
Lise' Ohlson was the event Chairperson, who organized the event,
helped get all 3000 eggs stuffed in time for the hunt, and procured the
prizes over the last few months. Janet Schneeman and Judy
Kanick helped staff the bake sale booth, Pam Gurr and
Megan & Meredith Gurr were the Easter Bunny's assistants,
Maggie and Harrison Flannigan, and Andrew Schneeman helped
set up the hunting areas and hide eggs. And thank you to the many other
volunteers who staffed the prize room, helped set up the hunt, hide the eggs
and clean up afterwards. Special thanks to everyone who
helped stuff eggs this year; Cub Scouts from Pack 202, Brownie
Girl Scouts from Troop 290, and the rest of the volunteers!
2004 Easter Egg Hunt
2004 FICRA Easter Egg Hunt was well attended, over 100 Fox Island
In addition to egg hunting, there were
photos with the Easter Bunny, a bake sale, gift bazaar, latte stand and
prizes for the lucky children that got 'special' eggs.
Some of the Easter Bunny's helpers
this year were: Pam Gurr,
Megan Gurr, Meredith Gurr, Michele Vick, John Ohlson,
Judy Kanick, Janet Schneeman, and Lise' Ohlson. Thanks,
The 2002 Easter Egg Hunt was sponsored by FICRA
Our thanks to Lise' Ohlson, who organized this
A good time was had by all at
the 2002 FICRA Fair. According to many fairgoers, old timers and
new visitors alike, it was 'the best ever'!
Over 80 booths offered their wares at the fair
this year, including flowers, baskets, artwork, jewelry, games for
the kids, homemade berry cobbler, meatball subs, egg rolls, and the
famous "Fair Burgers".
FICRA thanks this year's fair organizers, Pam
Turnbull and Lise' Ohlson.