Glass balls still await in Stanwood and Camano Island area

  • Thu Feb 18th, 2010 11:58pm
  • News

By Gale Fiege Herald Writer

STANWOOD — It’s week two of the Great Northwest Glass Quest.

Believe it or not, more than half of the 250 hand-blown, signed and numbered glass-art snowballs are still out there.

All you have to do is find a corresponding clue ball hidden in the Stanwood-Camano Island area and then follow the directions to collect your glass art treasure.

Nearly 70 organizations and business owners have hidden clear plastic clue balls in public parks and in shops around town and on the island. When found, the clues are traded for wintry glass balls, shaped like the green Japanese fishnet floats that occasionally wash up on Washington’s ocean beaches.

The glass quest continues through Feb. 28, coinciding with the winter Olympic Games in Vancouver, B.C., and the Port Susan Snow Goose and Birding Festival this weekend.

The glass quest snowballs, created by Stanwood artist Mark Ellinger, could become sought-after collectors’ pieces if the quest becomes an annual event, said organizer Doris Platis of the Seagrass Gallery on Camano Island.

More than 2,000 Quest booklets and maps were distributed last weekend, and many went to groups of more than two people, Platis said. Another 1,500 are to be distributed beginning today, she said.

In Stanwood, many business owners are happy just to know that the glass quest has brought new visitors to the interesting shops around town, said Gayle Picken of Gallery By the Bay.

To participate, pick up a booklet at the visitor information booth at the intersection of I-5 and Highway 532; the Stanwood Chamber of Commerce, 8725 271st St. NW; or the Camano Island Chamber of Commerce, 578 N. Camano Drive.

Those who don’t find a clue ball can enter a free drawing for a glass ball or get a coupon to buy one. The entry form is at the back of the booklet. It must be stamped by five participating businesses to be entered in the drawing.

For more information, go to

Gale Fiege: 425-339-3427;