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Harbor History Museum is pleased to host “Bomber Boys: Portraits From the Front,” a new traveling exhibition developed by Bering Street Studio. Featuring a series of striking photographs reproduced from a secret stash of World War II images, ephemera, and a diary from 1945, the exhibit highlights the combat, captains, crew, and camp life of the 445th bomb squadron of the 12th Army Air Corps stationed mainly on Corsica and in Italy.

“This amazing collection was found when my sister and I were cleaning out the hayloft of our horse barn in Gig Harbor, Washington,” says Stephanie Lile, exhibit curator and longtime museum professional. “Dad never talked much about the war and never seemed to want to, so finding the box of dusty old photos and a diary was a huge surprise.” Lile and her four siblings felt the collection was too special not to share. In fact, she has spent the last 10 years researching and cataloging the collection, an adventure that took her both to Italy and to Arizona to fly in an historic B-25.

Lile used the collection as inspiration for a young adult novel THE TAIL GUNNER; after its publication, she and her family decided to expand access to the collection by creating a traveling exhibition. Lile is a lecturer for Museum Studies at University of Washington Tacoma, and she saw an opportunity to use the collection and exhibit to involve her students in a real-world project. “The students did much of the background research on specific topics and people that was then transformed into various interpretive elements,” explains Lile. “The stories that have surfaced are amazing. One student discovered that Lorton Wellnitz, one of the bomber boys pictured in the exhibit, was not only an enlisted man and statistician, but an all-star pitcher around base.”

The exhibit features portraits of the “boys” who flew B-25 bombers in the Mediterranean theater. Some of them are known, like Wellnitz and Keith B. Lile—the tail gunner whose collection these images came from, but most are not. One of the curator’s hopes in presenting this exhibit is that as the show travels, people will recognize some of the men depicted. A handful of the men in the portraits were identified by notes on the original prints, but many remain a mystery.

“Bomber Boys: Portraits from the Front” will be on view from July 21st to September 4th. Harbor History Museum will host a members-only reception on July 27th from 6:00-8:00pm, including a curator talk and complimentary appetizers and refreshments.

For more information about Bomber Boys: Portraits from the Front, visit Contact Alphild Dick, Marketing and Events Coordinator, at or 253-858-6722 ext. 5 with questions.


OPEN HOUSE - City's Development Services Process

Tuesday July 19th, 3:00 pm to 7:00 pm

Community Rooms A & B 


cityhallWe want to hear your thoughts about the city's development services process

The Open house is a forum for you to let us know how well our development services departments are serving you and to hear your suggestions for any ways we could improve. 

This is part of an effort the City Council launched this year to add innovative options to the permit process to improve services across the Planning, Public Works, and Building & Fire Safety departments.

This Open House is led by an independent consultant who will compile overall feedback for presentation to the departments and City Council. 

Please join us between 3:00 and 7:00 pm on July 19th in Community Rooms A & B at Civic Center, 3510 Grandview Street to help us understand how our process is working for you.  Light refreshments will be served.

If you can't make it on the 19th, or would prefer to provide your inputs online, we have a brief, 10 questions, anonymous survey that you can complete anytime through July 31st.  Click here to launch the survey or browse


Write in the Harbor

Jim Lynch, author and Seattle native, is the featured keynote speaker at Write in the Harbor, Tacoma Community College’s annual regional writers conference. Write in the Harbor takes place November 4 & 5, at the Gig Harbor campus of Tacoma Community College.

The conference kicks off Friday evening, Nov. 4, with Lynch’s plenary address and book signing. Saturday activities begin at 8:30 a.m. with a master class taught by Lynch. A full complement of classes, workshops, and panels focusing on the craft and business of writing, as well as individual consultation appointments will follow.

In addition to Lynch, conference faculty include Anna Alexander, Julie Cooper, Susan DeFreitas, Taryn Fagerness, A.C. Fuller, Wendy Kendall, Mark Lindquist, E.C. Murray, Ryan Petty, Randall Platt, and Dean Wells.No Dearth of Books, Gig Harbor’s fine used bookstore will have copies of presenters’ works available for on-site purchase.

Conference attendance will be limited to seventy-five participants. Early bird registration is $139 until Sept. 15; after Sept. 15, conference registration increases to $169. For additional information, please visit the Write in the Harbor conference website at or call contact Tacoma Community College Gig Harbor at 253.460.2424.

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In 2016, the 3rd annual The Big Sports Gig™ "takes over” Cheney Stadium on July 1st, when the Tacoma Rainiers take on the Las Vegas 51s.

The fun filled Friday night, will include pre- and post-game festivities, including:

  • TBSG Tailgate Party
  • Exclusive opportunity to participate in an on-field parade (ages 4 to 12)
  • The Big Sports Gig T's marking your support for youth sports & recreation 
  • Kids whiffle ball game and fun in the new Cheneyville play area
  • Chances to win 1 of 2 sets of Summit Club Tickets with surprise Rainiers baskets
  • Friday night Fireworks, and more!

Standard Takeover Ticket $20
includes reserved game seat and hot dog meal. 

Tailgate BBQ Party Ticket $15
Opens at 5pm - Includes grillins' meal, commemorative cup, beer/wine/soft drinks

VIP Ticket $100
Includes all the above, private tour of Cheney stadium, customized game day t-shirt. (Must be ordered by 6/14)


All proceeds benefit our community's Recreation Scholarship Fund established in 2014 to help enable and increase the participation of disadvantaged youth in all area sports and recreation programs across our greater Gig Harbor and Key Peninsula community.

Since 2014, The Big Sports Gig™ has helped to raise over $10,000 for the Fund - enabling the annual participation of some 240 area youth in local sports and recreation programs, regardless of their family’s ability to pay. 

Join us for the fun and help support area youth sports & recreation programs
So That All May Play!

The Big Sports Gig is an event of the Greater Gig Harbor Foundation (GGHF), organized by the GGHF Recreation Core Area Board (Rec CAB). The Rec CAB works to expand collaboration and leverage resources across area organizations, develop funds, grants, endowments and other initiatives for eligible youth, adults and seniors to participate in recreation programs and classes that foster human development and promote health and wellness, and for equipment and facilities essential to sustain such programs across our greater peninsula communities.