Anchorage Inn

Coupeville WA

Phase 2 – Pumpkin Contest!

Update – We have a winner!

Pumpy weighed in at 108 pounds! The closest guess was 100 pounds and was submitted to Dave through a response to his INNformer newsletter! Congratulations to the winners of the FREE night’s stay at the Inn!

Thank you to all those who participated!!


Robin was the lucky winner of our “Name the Giant Pumpkin” contest, with the name “Pumpkinstilskin.”  Farmer Dave decided to nickname him “Pumpy!”

Now we are ready to

Guess Pumpy’s weight at the Harvest Carnival

weigh-in on October 8!

These great photos of Dave with his giant pumpkin were taken on September 17, with Pumpy measuring 68″ around. Pumpy is quite small for his age because he has not had much sunshine. He did, however, survive the “bird attack” — you can see on top where the bird ate a hole in his side. But Farmer Dave’s careful nursing helped him pull through and keep on growing!

Not much longer until the contest on Oct 8th at the Coupeville Farmers Market.

We are opening up to the public the chance to to guess what Pumpy’s weight will be at weigh-in on October 8.  The person who guesses the closest wil get a FREE night’s stay at the Anchorage Inn B&B, so put on your thinking cap and send in your best guess!

Your choice of any room (excluding the Crow’s Nest Suite, Discovery and Calista Cottage) at the Anchorage Inn, depending upon availability. Reservation should be made for a visit anytime between Oct 1st, 2011 and May 30th 2012.

Sue for Farmer Dave and everyone at Anchorage Inn


September 20, 2011 Posted by | Dave's Giant Pumpkin, Life at the Inn | 7 Comments

We have a winner!!

Congratulations to Robin Castiglione!!

Robin is the happy winner of our “Name the Pumpkin” contest, and has won a FREE night at Anchorage Inn!

At Robin’s suggestion, Dave’s pumpkin now proudly wears the name “Pumpkinstilskin.”

Congratulations to Robin from all of us!!

Honorable mention — and a night’s discount of 20% — went to:

Rob and Sandy – Pump Zilla

Paula – Orange Crush

Guests of the Inn – Cinderella’s Coach

Guests of the Inn – Captain Chubby

Congratulations, and thanks to everyone for participating.

Sue (for Dave and Dianne, and everyone at the Inn)



September 4, 2011 Posted by | Dave's Giant Pumpkin, Life at the Inn | Leave a comment

INNformer #130

INNformer #130 Aug 06

Hello Mainlanders, Islanders and those in between,

It’s finally developing into summer with the sun beginning to show itself more and more often. Our mornings usually begin with a regular curtain rehearsal. Quite often we awaken to witness a quickly developing marine fog layer. That curtain pulls completely back by 10am to present the show of summer. The lawn has slowed its pace considerably and has lost its deep green color, the flowers are of a different shape, height and color and have replaced those of last month. The wraparound porch is covered with falling rose petals and has the company of our guests all afternoon and into the early evening as they witness the golden display of the day’s sunset finale.

Pumpkin Update: Good news! We had 2 pumpkins that pollinated. Of those, I had to choose the one farthest from the root and it is gaining about 2 inches in circumference each day.  As of today it is 22.00 inches (55.88 cm) around and weighs approx. 6.27 pounds (2.82 kgrams). I’ve got it up on a pallet (I learned my lesson from last year). Now, if the sun keeps shining, the deer don’t eat it, the bugs stay away and a bolt of lightening doesn’t strike it, we’ll have a champ. It’s holding onto it’s blonde color. We have 64 days to get him really for competition at our Farmers Market on Sat. Oct 8th. See baby photo – 10 days old.

Win a FREE night’s stay at the Anchorage Inn B&B. Every year we ask for a name for our pumpkin. After all, it’s not an “it” any longer. It’s only been 3 weeks since our last INNformer, but we wanted to give everyone a chance to think of a name. Send us your clever, winning suggestion of a name before Sept 1st and the name which is chosen will win an overnight stay in your choice of any room (excluding the Crow’s Nest Suite and Discovery) at the Anchorage Inn, depending upon availability. Reservations should be made for a visit anytime between Oct 1st, 2011 and May 30th 2012.

The 3 Sisters: When growing your garden next year, here is something to remember.
The Three Sisters are squash (or pumpkin), corn and beans which grow and thrive together. Corn serves as the natural trellis for the beans to grow on. The beans’ roots set nitrogen in the soil to nourish the corn. The bean vines help to stabilize the corn stalks on windy days. The squash plants shelter the shallow roots of the corn and shade the ground to discourage weeds and preserve moisture.  Truly a symbiotic relationship.  I have read where it was a common practice to bury a small fish alongside the seeds at planting to nourish the “Three Sisters.”

World travelers have arrived from Italy and Canada. At this pace we may set an all time record for Canadian visitors.

Returning Guests that have been awarded discounts since our last INNformer totaled:
3rd & 4th reservation for the 10% Pancake discount = 1
5th thru 9th reservation for the 12% Omelet discount = 2
10th thru 19th reservation for the 15% Quiche discount = 0
20th or more reservation for the 20% French Toast discount = 1
This number is down considerably due to the number of reunions, weddings and vacationers we’ve had during the height of season.

Well, I could chatter all day long, but i know you’re anxious to put your thinking caps on. Besides that, the Inn hasn’t had a vacancy in 3 weeks and we’re busy as bees.

Coupeville – The shortest distance to far away.
Your innkeepers,
Dave and Dianne

(Leave your pumpkin name suggestion by Sept 1, in the Comments section.)

August 6, 2011 Posted by | Dave's Giant Pumpkin, INNformer Newsletter | Leave a comment

The Nameless Pumpkin

Dave’s Giant Pumpkin

Name the pumpkin and win a FREE night’s stay!

Note: See our latest INNformer newsletter also on the blog for a photo and later update!

Pumpkin #1 – the larger of the 2, was only 4 feet from the root. As it grew, chances are good that it would pull its root out of the ground. Not good.

Pumpkin #2 – the smaller, was 7 feet from the root. So a couple of days ago I snipped off #1 so all nutrients would go to #2.  Here is it’s progress:

the day of the snip it was 13.0 inches in circumference

day 2 it was 15.0

day 3 it was 17.75 and weighed 2.23 lbs.

day 4 (today) 19.50 weighing 3.85 lbs

We’ve got 64 more days till contest on Oct 8th at the Coupeville Farmers Market. He’s about a month behind schedule – long winter and weak summer!

We are opening up to the public the chance to offer us a winning name for this year’s pumpkin. The name that is chosen, those folks will get a FREE night’s stay at the Anchorage Inn B&B, so ask the world to start sending in names!

Your choice of any room (excluding the Crow’s Nest Suite, Discovery and Calista Cottage) at the Anchorage Inn, depending upon availability. Reservation should be made for a visit anytime between Oct 1st, 2011 and May 30th 2012.

Farmer Dave

Note from Sue 8/12/11 – Here is another photo I found of Dave with one of his giant pumpkins.

(Leave your pumpkin name suggestion by Sept 1,  in the Comments section below.)

August 5, 2011 Posted by | Dave's Giant Pumpkin | 31 Comments

INNformer #129

INNformer #129       July 17

Hello Mainlanders, Islanders and those in between,

Time Rightly Spent. So you roll out of bed, stretch, yawn, pour the coffee, collect the paper from the sidewalk, flip on the early show, and watch young men and women being far too cheerful as they report the weather and some community goings-on. Yet most of the morning’s information is a rehash of what you heard before you went to bed and, worse yet, most of the news is bad. Your mind flashes back to your stay at the Anchorage Inn B&B and you realize that you’re back in the old grind. Don’t be depressed, just find your bootstraps and pull yourself up …. You’ve got the latest INNformer to read.

Happy birthday everyone. We had a perfect 4th of July with clear skies, a mild sea breeze and comfortable temperatures on your island. A panorama of fireworks could be seen in every direction across Penn Cove and as far away as the mainland. The aroma of BBQ’s and the sound of anxious celebrators could be detected all day long. At the breakfast table we all sang our national anthem, including our visitors from Canada. Quite an honorable sound I must say! This is a great place to celebrate a birthday, hint, hint.

Pumpkin Update: As of the 16th of July, I have 2 hardy plants stretching their broad leaves towards the sky in an effort to find some sunshine. 2 days ago was our 7th day this summer with clear skies. It rained yesterday and half of today. One plant has been producing flowers but they’re too close to the root of the vine to accept. Should they produce a pumpkin, this “Atlantic Giant” would pull the plant right out of the ground. July 10th is the standard date to choose a pumpkin from your patch and snip off the others. Well needless to say, the season is behind schedule this year for all pumpkin growers so we’ll have to hope for at least a successfully pollinated flower by the end of the month. I put a boy and girl flower together yesterday, so cross your fingers.

World travelers came from far and wide. We had 3 separate couples in a week arrive from the Netherlands (Holland). These Dutch visitors were here for art classes, visiting friends and just traveling the earth. When I asked our first couple to sing their national anthem, we learned that the words included a devotion to Germany which, due to history, his family didn’t feel comfortable doing, which is understandable. His wife, from Spain, said she’d sing hers, but the best she could do would be to hum it because the anthem had no words. How interesting! We also had guests from Ireland, Australia, Bulgaria and Canada.

Returning Guests that have been awarded discounts since our last INNformer totaled:
3rd & 4th         reservation for the 10% Pancake discount = 6
5th thru 9th     reservation for the 12% Omelet discount = 6
10th thru 19th reservation for the 15% Quiche discount = 1
20th or more   reservation for the 20% French Toast discount = 2

The Grays Harbor Historical Seaport Authority has announced the sailing schedule for the tall ships Lady Washington and Hawaiian Chieftain for the summer of 2011. The schedule marks the 22nd summer that Lady Washington has toured Puget Sound area ports. Ports of call are:

  • Aberdeen: July 1-5
  • Anacortes: July 9-10
  • San Juan Islands (Expedition Voyages Family and Youth Camps): July 11-15
  • Anacortes: July 16-18
  • Bellingham: July 20-August 1
  • Blaine: August 3-7
  • Coupeville: August 11-14 They will enter Deception Pass on slack about 2:30PM 8/11. (Time could change). Expect cannon fire from under the bridge.
  • Brownsville: August 16-21
  • Port Orchard: August 23-24
  • Tacoma: August 26-28
  • Gig Harbor: August 30-31
  • Olympia: Sept. 2-5
  • Kirkland: Sept. 8-12 (Lady Washington only)
  • Aberdeen: Sept. 16-28

Coupeville – The shortest distance to far away.
Your innkeepers,
Dave and Dianne

July 18, 2011 Posted by | Dave's Giant Pumpkin, INNformer Newsletter, Life at the Inn | 1 Comment

Pumpkin gets its start

Dave’s Giant Pumpkin

It’s that time of year again! Dave has carefully nursed his giant pumpkin through the cool, cloudy start to our summer.  Recently Dave reported:

“Well the plant is alive! I’ve had an early blossom, but obviously not mature.
It’s about 2 feet long and I’m hoping with the sunny days forecast it will take off.
That is, if the deer don’t eat the blossoms etc. Cross your fingers.”

He has been doing some pollinating, and we are hoping this one will be another winner!

Yes, another winner. In 2006 Dave’s pumpkin also got off to a slow start, but won two prizes in Coupeville’s annual Harvest Festival contest. Dave’s BrookLynn (named for his first granddaughter) won the prize for “Prettiest Pumpkin” and, at 228 pounds, was second heaviest.

Check out the “Giant Pumpkin” tab on our website for story and photo of Dave and BrookLynn.

Can he do it again? Stay tuned as we bring you regular updates. And, as Dave says…
“Cross your fingers!”


July 18, 2011 Posted by | Dave's Giant Pumpkin | Leave a comment

INNformer Newsletter

April 2011

Hello Mainlanders, Islanders and those in between,

Since we last wrote we’ve had quite a variety of weather here in Coupeville. Although we’re famous for our minimal rainfall, we’ve had our fair share, as well as snowfall. But, we can proudly say the sun has been upon us once in a while and the winds have been rather merciful. We can tell Spring time is about to take a major stretch. Daffodils are in full bloom and tulips are only a few days from bursting. And, needless to say, when the ground begins to thaw the grass awakens. Following a gusty evening, I found the lawn was somewhat dry and with it’s appearance a bit shaggy and unappealing I decided I had to mow it. To my surprise, the mower started with the first pull of the ripcord! So with the sun glowing from behind the clouds I actually worked up a sweat. My timing was right on the money because it rained hard the very next day.

It’s pumpkin season! Here it is April and I’m on my 1st attempts to sprout a pumpkin seed. I have 6 wrapped in a couple of wet paper towels and placed gently in a zip lock bag and taped to the hot water pipe leading to one of our hot water heaters. I’ve taken them outside and placed them under a glass bowl to feel the semi warmth of the sun when it shines through the clouds every so often. I’ve also got 4 planted in dirt within a black pot and covered with plastic to keep the moisture in. It sits on a window sill facing the sky where the sun is said to be. It’s all a waiting game. Right now, we’ve seen nothing but clouds for almost 3 weeks straight with measurable rain every day and it looks like we have another week of the same ahead.

We took a short break and went to Disneyland to enjoy the Magic Kingdom with our granddaughters (and their Mom & Dad) for their Spring Break. It was in the mid 70’s and actually warm. Maybe I should have taken my seeds with me. We got plenty of exercise standing in lines, walking from one end of the Magic Kingdom to the other and back again for 3 days. We met Mickey, Goofy and Cinderella and had a great time.

The Tulips are coming! The 28th annual Skagit Valley Tulip Festival, April 1-24 is just around the corner. We still have rooms available, especially mid week to avoid the weekend travelers. Vacation on Whidbey Island is just a skip and a hop from tulip country. Visit Skagit Valley Tulip Festival for a list of events and must see and do’s! While there, enjoy a 15 minute Skagit Valley flightseeing adventure, Kenmore Air beginning at the La Conner waterfront. You’ll never look at the tulip fields the same way again. Want to see the spectacular blooms from a Helicopter instead of a plane?  Classic Helicopter Corp will be doing scenic flights every 15 minutes on Saturday’s and Sunday’s beginning April 8th from the Farmhouse Restaurant (located off HWY 20 & La Conner Whitney Rd.)

Tulip Facts: For some reason, I like facts. Just give me a fact and my ears perk up. Did you know that there are about 3,000 various known varieties of cultivated tulips! The majority of tulips are grown and exported from Holland.

Tulips come in a wide variety of vibrant colors such as red, yellow, orange, purple, pink and bi-colors. A tulip plant has typically 2-6 leaves, while some species have up to 12 leaves. An average height of a tulip plant ranges from 10-70 centimeters (that’s 4-27 inches). Generally, tulips have one flower per stem. However, a few species may have up to four flowers per stem. The attractive, colorful, cup-shaped flowers possess three petals and three sepals. There are six petaloid tepals, marked near the base of the flower with darker markings.

Tulips are classified into 15 classes on the basis of season of bloom, parentage and various floral characteristics. Tulips are available within November to May and they have a life span of 3-7 days. There are three types of tulips depending upon the time of bloom, such as early, midseason and late flowering.

Early flowering tulips, including Red Emperor, Waterlily, Greigii Tulips, bloom in March and early April. Midseason flowering tulips, such as Swan Wings Tulips, Parrot Tulips, Darwin Hybrids, bloom in April and early May. Late flowering tulips such as Rembrandt Tulips, Fringed Tulips bloom in the month of May.

For cultivation of tulip plants, a well-drained, airy, loamy soil is recommended. They require watering after planting during early spring or fall, as well as before blooming and after blooming. Tulip plants should be protected from small animals such as squirrels, rabbits or gophers and the deer of Whidbey Island.

Tulips are in a great demand all over the world. They are used for making the beautiful bouquets and for wonderful floral arrangements. They are an integral part of decorations for some special occasions such as weddings. Tulip is the national flower of Turkey. Tulip flowers are supposed to be a token of a perfect lover, passion, love, declaration of love, romance, fame, charity, dreaminess and a perfect B&B.

Your B&B Kicks Gas! For the next 4 months we’re offering the “Gas Buster Special” stay two consecutive nights, Sunday through Thursday, and we will take $25.00 off your bill to help cover the cost of your gas! Just mention the “Gas Buster Special” when making your reservation to get this rate! If making the reservation online, indicate Gas Buster Special in the notes section. Only one special or discount per visit.

Mother’s Day is coming! Yes, both Mother’s and Father’s Days are just around the corner. Gift certificates are a great idea for either Mom or Dad. Give us a call and we’ll take care of the rest.

Coupeville – The shortest distance to far away.
Your innkeepers,
Dave and Dianne

April 17, 2011 Posted by | Dave's Giant Pumpkin, INNformer Newsletter | Leave a comment

Dave’s Giant Pumpkin

My seed has sprouted! But there is no sun. Will it continue to grow? I’ll keep you posted.

April 16, 2011 Posted by | Dave's Giant Pumpkin | Leave a comment