ANNOUNCEMENTS:

  • Fireside December 17th from 7-9 at Jerry Deeter's home
  • No meeting on 12/27
  • Ed and Lori Stern are the proud Rotarians who “signed their front yard as Proud Rotarians Live Here. 

EXCHANGE STUDENT UPDATE: 

Duda's day at the Vet clinic
Duda and Leo, our exchange students, moved to new host families this week. They are enjoying Christmas activities, including rooting for the Huskies in the Apple Cup, going to the Nutcracker Ballet, making Christmas cookies, and visiting Craig Adam's vet clinic. They also experienced their first Thanksgiving with lots of football and lots of food. 
 

GUEST PRESENTATION: Alice Helker, Shellfish Farming

Alice Helker, Shellfish Farming
Alice Helker, owner of Fjordlux Oyster Farm with her husband, Van has been a sea lover since her early days growing up in a family of mariners in Tacoma. She and her husband graduated from the US Merchant Marine Academy and immediately set sail for different parts of the country for 9 months each year. Part of her experience was as an oil spill responder on the East coast. Feeling like they wanted to spend more time togetherether than apart, Alice and Van decided to make their love than apart, Alice and Van decided to make their love of the sea their livelihood.
 
After searching for two years, they found a suitable tideland to farm. After an additional three years they had secured all the permits necessary to begin operations. They have been in business for three years.
 
In each oyster bag, there are between 150 and 200 oysters with about a 70% yield. Their oyster farm harvests 700 dozen (8400) oysters from 1.5 acres of tideland. It takes 1 ½ y ears to grow oysters from seed. In colder climates, it can take longer.
 
If you are interested in tasting oysters, get to know the different tastes depending on the home location of the oyster. Oysters are the most plump in the spring and shut down a bit in the fall. A deep shell is the most desirable. 
 
In our area, we have the Olympia oyster. It is the most difficult to grow and accounts for only 15% of the farm's harvest. It is the only oyster that is native to the west coast. It has been overharvested, which is the reason for the low yields. 
 
Other oysters are the Pacific, Kumamoto, Virginica and the European Flat.