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  • Writer's pictureKim McLaughlin

Does it take a village?

Updated: Sep 6, 2020

I believe what makes a community close are the interactions we enjoy by getting to know the people who live on our little island. Many residents of Bainbridge Island have made their home here because of what they noticed when they first arrived. A vibrant downtown with a sense of community, natural beauty, great schools, a variety of homes and living accommodations plus the convenience to a world class city only a ferry ride away.

I instantly felt I had chosen a great place to call home. When I officially called Bainbridge Island my home in 2005, I purchased a home on the old part of the Wing Point Community, the home needed everything, and we began our weekend with a trip to a wonderful hardware store in the middle of town. The bins were full of different size nails, there was the aroma of freshly popped corn in red and white striped bags waiting for customers. You could hear three or four conversations between the different employees of the store and the do-it-yourselfers regarding what tools to buy or nails to use. I looked forward to accompanying my husband and I instantly felt I had chosen a great place to call home.

T&C is another community favorite and while the store has been pleasantly remodeled the staff and customers have remained the same. The community spirt and camaraderie is ever present and the buzz around the holidays make it a special place to grocery shop.

Well...things change, and villages become towns and towns turn into to tourist havens when they’re located on an island like Bainbridge. We’ve done a remarkable job of holding on to the small-town feel, which takes me to my next online. We all click and purchase. I know it’s convenient but with that convenience comes a price. Having items dropped at your doorstep may feel like a convenience but it also takes you away from the very things that drew you here in the first place. Small merchants can’t afford to pay rent, employees, taxes and hope to stay in business when they become a place to experience but not a place to purchase.

Next time you go shopping on Bainbridge think about the experience you have, what conversations took place and how you interacted with a friend or a neighbor on the way to do your shopping. All those steps build community and keep us thriving here on Bainbridge. You may spend a bit more but what you gain in return is priceless. I look forward to seeing you next time I’m out and about!

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