Bremerton: It’s for everyone

The Bremerton I see before me today is far removed from the Bremerton of 1998.

The Bremerton of 1998 consisted of more areas to stay away from, as far away from as possible, instead of areas to enjoy and embrace.

As a young couple looking to purchase our first home, we were drawn to the affordability and availability of houses within the price range we were looking for.

The appeal of being able to own our own home without having to live in a cookie cutter development where every third house looked just like ours or have to belong to anything even resembling a homeowners association was enticing and exciting.

As the years have passed collective neighborhood pride has grown as well. Common area improvements, projects and communications have brought residents together.

Social media has played an important role as the tools in which to communicate within any given neighborhood has become easier and faster to access.

A slow but steady growth downtown has brought about many changes that have been requested for quite some time. Restaurants, entertainment and shopping options have cropped up where there were little to none before.

Coordinated activities such as the First Friday Art Walks and various holiday festivals have made going downtown for some food and fun seem second nature.

With a certain amount of collective success comes the temptation to close the door and protect what has been accomplished.

The inability to listen or learn from anything that might be critical or construed as negative by those labeled as “outsiders” quickly follows.

I am always disheartened by the posts I read on various blogs that come from Bremerton residents dismissing comments or concerns from surrounding community members simply because the individuals making the comments  “do not live here.”

Bremerton continues to improve so that it can service the population that resides within its borders as well as drawing new people in from surrounding communities to shop and enjoy what it has to offer.

Without that welcome, influx of people from the outside coming in with new ideas and suggestions, a community such as Bremerton would begin to stagnate.

While remaining realistic in regards to what goods and service I can and will purchase here and those I will be looking to travel outside of Bremerton for, I both agree and support a certain amount of “buying local” and supporting Bremerton business.

Just the same, those on the outside are looking to travel into Bremerton for the goods and services they can’t or don’t want to get within their own community.

Welcome to Bremerton. Our door is open.

Please bring your ideas and suggestions and feel free to take back the positive experiences you have had with us.

You can reach Colleen Smidt at


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