Renewal. Regeneration. Rejuvenation. These are words we tend to associate with a specific season of the year. But, in truth, acts of renewal and restoration occur constantly. In this, the twelfth issue of Whidbey Life Magazine, we celebrate those acts—and the compassion and creativity they reveal.
In Gimme Shelter, writer Patricia Herlevi and photographer Sarah Sanborn profile some of the people who rescue orphaned/unwanted animals of all sizes and types. From chipmunks to cows, our furred and feathered friends are revived by human compassion.
A group of islanders are together fighting the debilitating effects of neurological diseases in a remarkable way. Their moving stories of rejuvenation are the heart and soul of On the Ropes, described in Steve Burr’s personal account and portrayed by Marsha Morgan in photographs that take you to a ringside seat.
Our island’s farmers are in the vanguard of those who are restoring health to soils degraded by years of traditional farming practices reliant on pesticides and artificial fertilizers. Their efforts are chronicled by writer Sharon Betcher and caught on camera by photographer David Stern in Cultivating Hope, a story of regenerative agriculture. This issue’s cover honors that rejuvenation with images, taken by Julia Beck, of students and staff at Whidbey’s Organic Farm School.
Islanders express our concern for a dwindling population of orca whales through advocacy and celebration. Regularly held events in our small towns reaffirm our relationship to the marine life around us. In Whale Worship the Whidbey Way, writer Nia Martin eloquently explains our collective love for these creatures—and the importance of returning one particular orca to her home waters—as David Stern captures in photos an annual parade to welcome the whales.
The means by which discarded materials are collected and assembled by artist Zoe Osenbach combine reinvention with recycling. The effect is perfectly described by Lea Cramer in Reimagining Refuse.
The metal sculptures of Jean Whitesavage and Nick Lyle are simultaneously rugged and romantic; their tools are no less so. Photographs by Lyle, taken in the forge, illustrate the moody allure of the sculptors’ repurposed equipment and retooled implements. In Forging Friends, Lea Cramer reveals their fascinating history.
Certain people—often artists—have a talent for reinventing themselves, if only for a night. In Among the Bohemians, writer Kate Poss tells the story of just such a group here on Whidbey. Photographer Rich Yukubousky captures the revelry of the Island Bohemians at one of their rollicking gala balls.
In these pages, we are pleased to recognize rescuers, restorers, and renovators. Their radiance, along with others like them, is what makes Whidbey a place of renewal for all.
Dianna MacLeod, Editor & Publisher