Anacortes Community Profile
(excerpt from the Anacortes Chamber of Commerce Community Profile)
Anacortes is the principal city on Fidalgo Island, the eastern-most island in the San Juan archipelago. Anacortes is the second largest city in Skagit County and its largest seaport.
The City has modern educational facilities, state-of-the-art health care, and abundant business opportunities, all in the natural beauty of an island setting. Anacortes residents and visitors enjoy 12 ½ miles of saltwater shoreline, a pristine environment, four freshwater lakes, nearly 3300 acres of city-owned forestlands and parks and breathtaking water, island and mountain views.
The natural abundance, vibrant community and the convenience of bridges connecting to the mainland make Anacortes a "Natural Destination" for those seeking a superior quality of life.
Anacortes is located on the north central coast of Washington State (USA), 80 miles north of Seattle, WA and 90 miles south of Vancouver, BC. The City is 16 miles west of the I-5 freeway (exit 230), via Highway 20. Our Zip Code is 98221 and Area Code is 360.
Anacortes enjoys a mild, marine climate due to its island location on the inland waters of Puget Sound. The prevailing southwesterly flow of weather is interrupted by the Olympic Mountain Range creating a rain shadow- and those fortunate communities like Anacortes that are in that shadow experience less precipitation that surrounding communities.
Anacortes has on average, 30% (12 inches) less rain than Seattle just 80 miles to our south. Our temperatures are mild year around and we enjoy many sunny / partially sunny days. Average daytime temperatures of 45°F (7°C) in the winter and 75°F (24°C) in the summer.
Anacortes enjoys an exceptional level of health care service usually only found in larger municipalities, provided by Island Hospital and the supporting medical community.
Island Hospital is a modern, publicly owned facility that is recognized as one of the most innovative small hospitals in the nation. The hospital has 43 beds, a 24-hour emergency room (level 3 trauma) and a 6 bed ICU. The hospital features a birthing center, a physical therapy and rehab unit, cancer care and sleep disorders centers, a state of the art electronic medication administration system and is converting its imaging technologies (x-ray, CT, Ultrasound, MRI, mammography / arteriography) to an all digital system. An FAA approved, lighted helipad for air ambulance service is located on hospital grounds, providing Level 1 trauma service to patients via Harborview Medical Center in Seattle.
The hospital and local medical community include 515 professionals and staff, including 120 physicians and 151 registered nurses. The supporting medical community includes more than 24 specialties, including 12 dentists and two skilled nursing and rehabilitation facilities.
Anacortes offers a wonderful selection of marine and land-based recreational opportunities for individuals, families and groups. The city has a busy waterfront and an extraordinary amount of forest and parkland for a city of any size.
The natural setting of Fidalgo Island provides access to the San Juan Island archipelago (176 named islands in San Juan County and 700 islands/reefs overall, including the British Columbia Gulf Islands). Boating, whether power, sail or paddle, is well supported in Anacortes with many marinas, boat rentals, charter services, boat launches and a full range of marine related products and services.
The city has 12 parks totaling 468 acres. Washington Park encompasses 220 acres, featuring extensive seashore areas, 75 campsites, a boat launch, picnic areas and 2.3 mile paved road that meanders through the park. Other specialized parks include a skateboard park, an off-leash dog park, childrens’ playgrounds and the 4 mile Tommy Thompson Parkway—a paved pedestrian trail that parallels some of the city waterfront.
The Anacortes Community Forest Lands (ACFL) comprises 2800 acres of forests, meadows, lakes and wetlands, entirely within the city limits. Well-mapped trails provide opportunities for hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding and, on select trails, motorized trail biking.
Arts and Entertainment
Anacortes, Skagit County and the San Juan islands have a vibrant arts and entertainment community featuring artists in most mediums, a wide variety of performing arts and festivals and galleries for any taste. Brodniak Hall, seating 806, is our in-town performance venue. The McIntyre Hall performing arts center, located on the Skagit Valley College Mount Vernon campus, provides a variety of arts, educational, entertainment and cultural offerings throughout the year - including Symphony, Opera, Ballet, Musicals, with talent ranging from local, to national and international artists.
The major Anacortes festivals include Waterfront Festival ( May), Shipwreck Day ( an all city garage sale in July), What-the-heck Fest (independent bands in July), Arts Festival in August, Jazz Festival in September and the Oyster Run (a motorcycle rally in October).
City buildings feature more than 100 life-sized murals depicting events in the city’s history by local artist Bill Mitchell. The City has many independent music venues, the Anacortes Community Theater, the Skagit Symphony at Brodniak Hall and a three screen, first run movie theater.