2022 Winter Driving Tips

According to the Kitsap Sun, on December 27, 2021, there were ‘hundreds’ of cars sitting in the ditches when an Arctic blast snowstorm hit the county. There were also 25 crashes within 24 hours during the same storm. While no one was seriously hurt, people did spend the rest of their year getting their cars towed or repaired due to the weather.

Being Washington State, there is a good chance that history will repeat itself and cars will end up in ditches with the next big snow.

There are some things that you can do to help mitigate the chances of you being in an uncomfortable or dangerous situation.

Avoid a Crash

Obviously, the first way to avoid a crash is to stay home and not drive during bad weather, but there are always going to be times when it’s impossible to stay home – even in a snowstorm –, so here are some of the best ideas for avoiding a crash:

  • Don’t use your cruise control while driving on snowy roads;
  • If you skid, steer into the skid that way once you get your traction back, you won’t need to overcorrect your steering;
  • Slowly accelerate and decelerate;
  • Give the vehicles in front of you plenty of room – 8 to 10 seconds or more helps;
  • 4WD and AWD do not help you drive on ice;
  • Don’t crowd the snowplow;
  • Ramps, bridges, intersections, and shaded areas are prone to ice;
  • Always move over for emergency vehicles, maintenance, and construction vehicles;
  • Watch for wildlife, especially deer;
  • Teach teens how to drive in snow and ice;
  • Slow down in chain-up areas;
  • Know what your car’s traction control and ABS systems are capable of;
  • When driving uphill, keep moving and don’t stop or hesitate

If You Must Drive

Here are some tips on how to make the best of it if you do need to get out on the road during a snowstorm or when the roads are icy:

  • Plan your route and let others know where you’re headed;
  • Check the pass conditions with WSdot.com before you leave;
  • Make sure your vehicle is winterized;
  • Warm up your car before you drive;
  • Be aware of areas prone to black ice;
  • Remove any snow or ice from your mirrors, windows, decks, and any sensors/cameras on your vehicle;
  • Clear your headlights and taillights

Winterize Your Vehicle

If you haven’t already, get your vehicle ready for winter driving. There are several things you should do before winter comes like check your antifreeze level and battery power; add -30-degree rated windshield wiper fluid level and fill your gas tank. Check your windshield wiper blades to make sure they aren’t worn. If you don’t have tire chains, get a set.

When it comes to your tires, check your tread and be sure to use winter tires. If you’re using all-weather tires, your tread needs to be more than 2/32 inch tread. Check your tire pressure since it will drop when it is cold out. You should have a tire repair kit with you, too.

Kitsap Auto Outlet Service Department can help you winterize your car or truck, so give them a call or schedule an appointment to get ready for the winter weather.

Are You Ready for an Emergency?

If you are stuck in a ditch or in an accident, you should have several items with you that can keep you safe and comfortable while you wait on help. The first thing to do is not panic, which means you need to keep everyone calm. Be aware of your surroundings, and don’t leave your vehicle.

Here are the things you should have in your vehicle any time of the year, but especially when it’s snowing:

  • Emergency First Aid Kit
  • Cell phone with a charger
  • Sand or kitty litter to help get traction in the snow
  • Flares
  • Jumper cables
  • Ice scraper
  • Flashlight
  • Batteries
  • Boots and gloves
  • Extra food, fluids, and blankets for everyone

Put the flares out in front and behind your vehicle, and if you have an orange cloth or other bright cloth, tie it around the antenna. Keep your radiator free from snow. If you have an emergency system like OnStar®, you can use it to call for help.

Only turn your engine on when needed to warm up the interior after checking to make sure the tailpipe is clear. A blocked tailpipe can cause carbon monoxide poisoning.

Another tip is to know your cellphone’s capabilities. There are all types of apps available that will give your cellphone the ability to help you during an emergency. Always have your GPS tracking on when you are traveling during a snowstorm. This combined with apps from companies like AT&T can point out your coordinates making you easy to find in an emergency. There are even apps that will send an alert to emergency personnel if you run into trouble.

If your car is equipped with the latest technology, then you may already have a lot of apps available to you that will help you plan the weather and navigate around blocked roads. If you don’t have the latest technology, you might want to look at a new car. Kitsap Auto Outlet has a large inventory of vehicles that will help you navigate the winter roads of Kitsap County.

Check out our inventory or schedule your service department appointment to winterize your vehicle today.

Meet Santa in Poulsbo on Christmas Eve

The last chance to meet Santa in Poulsbo is on December 24th.

12/24, Christmas Eve from 11am-2pm

Free Photo opportunities with our Nordic Father Christmas. Bring your own camera and take photos of your kids with Father Christmas at his house. You’ll find him in his house, located right in the center of downtown on Front Street, near the town clock.

Stretch Your Legs across Kitsap

With so many things to do on the Kitsap Peninsula, the problem is there might be too many choices. However, if you try, you can do all of them. At least once. Short on time? These close-to-home places offer fresh air and sunshine.


Green Mountain State Forest

Yes, Hurricane Ridge is an awesome hike, but there are just as many wonderful trails waiting for you here at home. Day hikes are a good way to relax, get some exercise and breathe in the fresh air.

While the trails are not usually long, there are enough of them to appeal to all levels of hikers.

For those who want to do a little climbing, then the Green Mountain State Forest offers a trail system that will take you to the top where you’ll be treated to a panoramic view of Kitsap County. No, it’s not the same as standing at the top of Hurricane Ridge, but it is a great way to spend the day in the woods.  Plus, you’re over 1,600 feet above sea level with a great view of Puget Sound. You can even see the Olympic Mountains, Mount Rainier and Seattle’s skyline. If you squint, you might be able to see Hurricane Ridge.

Be sure to take a map since people have been known to wander off the path. It’s also shared with mountain biking, horses and dirt biking, so plan accordingly.

McCormick Woods Trail – Port Orchard

This gem is not in the park system, nor is it owned by the state or federal government. This 7-mile trail system is part of the McCormick Woods HOA that runs through McCormick Village Park and surrounding areas. It meanders through both private and public property that has been opened to the public.

The village park is managed by Port Orchard and features playgrounds, restrooms and other amenities. It connects to the main trail that crosses creeks, goes through woods, passes a big dog park and connects to a dead-end bike trail.

It’s considered an easy trail and mostly flat. Most of the trails do not loop so unless you cross over from Grouse Trail to Beaver Dam Trail or vice versa, you will have to walk back the way you came in.

Illahee State Park Trails – Port Orchard

Running out of time to do things, but still want to get out and stretch your legs? This park set on Port Orchard Bay is home to a short trail that can be extended to 3-miles if you hop off the trail and walk the beach before following an overgrown road back to the trailhead.

The official trail is only a half-mile loop, but if you add on some of the other trails, you can make this an afternoon jaunt. 

The views consist of woods and water, but those are some of the reasons you walk in the first place. It’s a level trail, and there is a fee to use the park. If you have plans to come back here more than once, you might consider saving yourself a lot of money by buying a Discover pass.


Biking is a favorite pastime of Washington residents, and many places welcome you and your bicycle. In addition to the hiking trails listed above, here are some more options for you.


Looking for a challenge? Then take the Seabeck to Holly to Gold Creek Road route. This is a 40-mile loop that offers enough hills to make your legs feel the strain while delivering spectacular views in tree farm country.  The roads are big and don’t have a lot of traffic on them, so unless you see a deer, you might not see anyone else on the road.

Port Orchard

Port Orchard to Southworth is a flat ride that is a 26-mile round trip. The shoulders of the roads are a bit narrow, but if you ride in the middle of the afternoon, you might not encounter a lot of traffic. The gem at the end of the ride is Manchester State Park where you can spend the afternoon relaxing on the shores of Rich Passage. You might want to take a bathing suit along for a quick dip in the cool water.


Got kids and looking for a flat, fun ride that won’t tax everyone in your group?  Then do a 5-mile ride along Big Valley Road in Poulsbo.  The downside is that when you get to the end of the road, you have to turn around and ride 5-miles back.

Most of these trails are flat as are all north to south trails, but when you start riding east to west, you run into ridges that have to be cycled over, so be sure that all in your group are capable of the ride.

Use Your Equipment Properly

From hiking to biking to boating and more, you are prepared for the adventure by properly using your equipment. That is also true for your vehicle. If you’re headed off-trail, here are some tips for making the most of the adventure.

Tips for Driving Off Trail in the Backcountry

Use your 4WD in low gear as much as possible. You’ll get more power.

  • Don’t straddle rocks. Find the high points before entering into rocky terrain. If you modify the trail, put the rocks back where you found them.
  • Know where you’re going by walking the trail in advance.
  • Assume the worse on blind curves and proceed with caution.
  • Driving uphill can be tricky, so approach it head-on and go steady. Keep your wheels from locking up and never go sideways. If you can’t make it, back down slowly.
  • Downhill driving is the same as going up. Go slow and stay in a straight line. Keep your wheels from locking up. If you do slide, turn into the slide the same as you would on icy roads.

No matter what the conditions, be prepared for everything from getting stuck to tipping over.

If you don’t have a 4WD or can’t carry a kayak or other fun toys, then stop by and see us at Kitsap Auto Outlet. We have plenty of vehicles that can take you off on your next adventure. From trucks to crossover SUVs, there’s something for everyone. We offer financing, so you can buy today.

Make sure that your vehicle is ready for your hiking, biking, boating trip by bringing it by and letting our ASE Certified technicians do a safety check. We’ll check belts, hoses, fluids, tire pressure and other parts for wear and tear. Give us a call at 855-983-7088 and schedule your appointment today.

Make Date Night Memorable

You want date night to be memorable, but going out to eat is not always the most impressive thing you can do to amaze your prospective other. Not saying that a good meal won’t warm the heart, but to make it truly noteworthy, creative thinking is in order.

You might not want to take your date on the Hot Tub Boats in Seattle for the first date, but that is a consideration for later. These boats are exactly what they sound like; a hot tub that seats six in a boat floating about in Lake Union. It’s a joystick-controlled motorized boat that goes a meager 5 M.P.H., which might be too fast if you’re trying to balance your champagne while steering.

Places that do make a good first impression on dates are places like these:

Kitsap Forest Theater – Bremerton

There is always a show at the Kitsap Forest Theater. It may not always involve people in costumes, but it will be spectacular. Walk along trails dressed in the finery of pine needles that cushion your feet and add spice to the air. The rhododendrons bloom along the trail in the springtime. And at the end of that trail?

There is a clearing where there’s magic. It is home to the Kitsap Forest Theater whose purpose is to entertain and educate. They want people to appreciate the woodlands as much as they appreciate being entertained.

What started as just a home for the local theater soon became a destination as word spread of the performances and the secluded location surrounded by old-growth trees. This place has seen time change since the day it started in 1928; it’s one of the oldest outdoor theaters in the United States.

Over the years, it’s gone from a place where good theater resides to a place that welcomes visitors all year round. It supports youth camps and activities like Salmon Safari which takes kids down to the Chico Creek where they can watch the returning salmon and Adventure Camp which offers drama, hiking and the exploration of the forest.

For more information and a schedule of events, click here. https://www.foresttheater.com/

Rodeo Drive-In – Bremerton

For those seeking a date night that will be memorable, go back to the future with a movie and a tub of popcorn at the Rodeo Drive-In.

Nostalgia is all the rage, and this drive-in theater captures the fun of sitting out under an open sky enjoying a first-run movie on a big screen. Treat yourself to goodies like hot dogs and corn dogs or something more substantial like a Philly Cheese Steak. The rest of the menu includes all of the usual suspects like French fries, nachos and chicken strip baskets. They even serve pizza. They will page you when your meal is ready. How’s that for service?

It gets really busy during the summer months, so if you’re planning on heading out, get there early for a good parking place.

While your parents and grandparents had to hang heavy metal speakers on the car window, today’s state-of-the-art sound system is no longer broadcast over tinny-sounding metal. It’s now broadcast through your FM radio system. Some Smartphones work with their system – synchronization is an issue with a Smartphone-, but you’re better off with the FM system.

The Rodeo has been open for 73 years and even keeps the lights on when it rains. There are times when the weather does close them down, so be sure and check the schedule online before you head out. You can find them at https://www.rodeodrivein.com/

Don’t Get Stranded

Date night is no night to find out that your vehicle isn’t working as it should. It’s a worn-out trope about running out of gas when on a date, but it’s no fun if you do run into problems while trying to make a good first impression. Before you pick up your date for your first night out, make sure that your car or truck is in top condition.

  • Check the fluids
  • Check the tire pressure
  • Check the hoses, belts and pumps
  • Check your battery charge
  • Check your lights
  • Check your wipers
  • Make sure you have an emergency first aid kit or roadside repair kit

You want your first date to be memorable because you took your date somewhere amazing, not because you left them standing on the side of the road while you waited on a tow truck.

Clean the Interior

No one wants to ride in the dirt, so before you pick up your date, pick up the vacuum and clean the interior. Get the sand and dirt up off the floor. Shake out the mats and vacuum underneath. Wipe down the dash and clean the windshield.

Here are a few tricks to get the interior date ready:

  • Use a coffee filter to dust the interior. Coffee filter material is dust free and doesn’t leave scratches. Run this across your dash and center console. Coffee filters are cheap, so keep them handy.
  • Does the interior smell? Sprinkle baking soda over cloth seats and vacuum it up to eliminate odors in the cloth. Works on armrests and other cloth parts, too.
  • Change the cabin air filter. A dirty air filter means that dust and pollen have been recycled throughout the cabin of your vehicle.

If you would like, we’ll be happy to go over your vehicle before the big date. Just give us a call or check online to schedule an appointment. Our ASE Certified techs will help you make a good impression, and they only use OEM replacement parts that won’t let you down.

Maybe your fishing truck isn’t a good vehicle for a first date, unless, you’re going fishing. But, if you’re looking to impress, we’ve got a wide selection of pre-owned vehicles that will set the date off on the right foot. Stop by and see what’s new on our lot. We can sell you a new vehicle, but the rest of the date is up to you.  Kitsap Auto Outlet is located at 3555 W State Hwy 16, Port Orchard, WA.

Inexpensive Places to take the Kids and the Dogs

No matter what time of the year it is, at some point the kids and the dogs start to make you crazy. If either one of those two is standing by the door, then it’s time to get them into the fresh air for some fun and exercise. State and local parks make a budget-friendly destination, so visit these places often.

Both kids and dogs are welcome at the following parks:

Silverdale Rotary Gateway Park – Silverdale

This 12-acre park on Silverdale Way NW includes a skate park for the kids, walking trails for you and a dog park for Rover. Restrooms are closed during the winter.

Howe Farm Park – Port Orchard

83 acres to roam with your dogs and your kids make this former farm a great place to wear everyone out. Including an off-leash area where your best friend can stretch their legs and chase their new friends from one end to the other. It is located on Long Lake Road SE.

The following are not dog-friendly, but kids love these places. They won’t even know they’re learning something.

Bug and Reptile Museum – Bremerton

The Bremerton Bug and Reptile Museum is not only awesome, it’s FREE. You won’t have to spend a dime getting your kids interested in bugs and reptiles unless you buy them something from the gift shop. They make it very educational to learn about reptiles from around the world as the museum staff explain the benefits of snakes, lizards and turtles.

While fascinating, you may want to discourage your kids from starting their own 8-foot long ant farm. Although you can buy your kids a starter ant farm, a grow your own frog kit or a worm farm. How much fun will that be at your house?

The kids might want to see a scorpion up close and personal or recoil from the Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches. Or maybe scream when they see a Tarantula. These and other insect residents like butterflies and praying mantises are ready to teach them about the world around them. Don’t be surprised if the boys try to scare the girls.

Kitsap Live Steamers Train Park – Port Orchard

Want something a little saner and quieter for the kids to do? Then hop on the Kitsap Live Steamer and take a trip through the calming quiet of the pines for 12 minutes. During that ride, you have a good chance of seeing wildlife like deer.

Trains run every 2nd and 4th Saturday from April until October.

Aurora Valentinetti Puppet Museum and Children’s Theatre – Bremerton

The Aurora Valentinetti Puppet Museum shares its doors with the Kitsap County Historical Society and Museum and is the home of puppets from around the world. The history of puppetry is on display in many of the exhibits in the museum, as well as giving insight into the artistry required to create puppets. From shadow puppets from Southern Thailand to Disney’s Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck, there is something for everyone.

The museum is open a limited number of days, so contact them in advance to find out what hours they’re open.

Tag Zone – Bremerton

You don’t have to be a kid to enjoy the Tag Zone in Bremerton, but you do have to be at least 6-years old. Suit up and arm yourselves with Nerf weapons in controlled combat scenarios. The kids are supervised, so you can take the day off while they wear themselves out.

The Tag Zone offers several games like Squad vs Squad and Protect the Leader to name a few. All games are divided into as equal teams as possible. This makes the games fun for everyone.

They host birthday parties, too.

Battle Point Park – Bainbridge Island

Kids climbing the walls? Head over to Battle Point Park and let them climb the forts and treehouses in the kids’ recreational area of this historic destination. Once a former naval radio station, the 90.3 acres are now open to the public to enjoy ponds, trails, roller hockey, disc golf and basketball courts.  Dogs are not welcome here, but there are so many things for the kids to do that we wanted to mention this park.

Traveling with Kids and Dogs

You know that both kids and dogs are hard on the interior of your vehicle, so here are some quick tips on how to keep the interior clean and fresh-smelling.

Baking Soda – If you use baking soda to clean your home, then you know it can clean and deodorize your vehicle, too. Sprinkle a little on the cloth interior parts and vacuum it off. It will remove odors.

Olive Oil – Take a microfiber cloth and rub a small amount of olive oil over your leather. Rub it in small circles. It will shine up the leather. Do this sparingly, or you’ll end up with a buildup.

Slime – Kids got Slime? Then use it to pick up dirt and grime from door handles and other places with tiny crevasses and cracks. It’s Slime; it will get into those cracks.

Foam Brush – Those small foam paintbrushes are the perfect tool for wiping down the louvres in your vents. Just run them inside the vents, and they will pick up any dust and dirt hidden there.

Need More Room

Now that you have all the places to go to on your map, do you have enough room in your vehicle? Maybe it’s time to buy a new car.

At Kitsap Auto Outlet, we can equip you with as much room as you need for those kids, dogs and all of their toys. From minivans to SUVs and everything in between our inventory is stocked and ready to roll. We also offer financing, so we can get you set up with the payments for your new ride. Look through our online showroom and pick out one that fits your family’s needs. Call us or stop by, and we’ll be happy to show it to you. Let’s see if all the kids fit.

Antiquing around the Peninsula

There is nothing quite like browsing through antique stores looking for that rare treasure. The one that might make you famous on The Antique Roadshow or at least double your money on an online auction site. Where do you go to find these gems? Well, everywhere!

Here are some shops that might have the long-lost treasure map or first edition book on your wish list.

Josephine’s Mercantile – Port Orchard

Owned and operated by Samantha Smith, the mercantile is named after her Grandma Jo who saved everything. Like all family traditions, Samantha has filled her shop with pieces of the past that have been preserved so that future generations will treasure them.

Josephine’s is home to partner curators like Farmer Rosie who is pleased to present a menu of soups and sandwiches that will satisfy your hunger. Shopping is hard work.

Jo’s is stocked by a collective of treasure hunters like yourself, so you never know what you’ll find. As treasure hunting is a never-ending sport, you should check back often; inventory changes regularly.

Josephine’s Mercantile is located on Bay Street in Port Orchard. For more information, click here. https://www.josephinesmerc.com/

Abigail’s Artful Abode – Poulsbo

From farmhouse to the Victorian Era, Abigail’s is packed with treasures that will have everyone asking you where you got your copper fruit bowl. Or where you found the brass butterfly trivet.

Abigail’s is all about funky and fun. The eclectic mix of collectibles and antiques is co-mingled with home goods and furniture, which makes every twist and turn in the shop a delight for shoppers. Whether shopping for yourself or a gift for a friend, you’re sure to find something.

While the inventory changes regularly, the fun of the hunt does not so check back often to see what else is on Abigail’s shelves.

You’ll find Abigail’s Artful Abode on Front Street NE in Poulsbo and on the web. https://www.abigailsartfulabode.com/

Olde Central Antique Mall – Port Orchard

Don’t miss what’s in your own backyard. Olde Central Antique Mall is located on Bay Street in Port Orchard, and they’ve won awards for the Best Antique Shop from WestSound magazine for a reason. Thanks to their wide selection of glassware, books, clothing and more such as museum pieces and pottery, they are considered a premier place to shop for all things vintage.

They house 45 dealers with a range of tastes and styles, which is why it’s fun to shop here. You never know what you’ll find tucked away in a corner somewhere. It could be that missing piece of Fiestaware that will complete your Grandmother’s set or that vintage Coco-Cola bar stool you need to finish your home bar. Maybe you need a horse collar to hang on your living room wall. Or a child’s desk salvaged from a one-room schoolhouse.

No matter what your tastes, you’ll be able to find something you can’t live without.

In addition to being located on Bay Street, you’ll find them at http://www.oldecentralantiquemall.com/

Have you run out of room in your vehicle?

Have you done so much antiquing that you ran out of room in your car? It might be time to think about getting something a little bigger. Especially if you’re going to spend a lot of time exploring all of the antique shops on the Kitsap Peninsula. It would be too bad if you found the perfect armoire for your hallway in Port Gamble and were unable to get it back home.

Our large selection of pre-owned vehicles include trucks, SUVs and passenger cars, so we’re sure that we’ve got a car that will meet your needs. We also offer financing, so you can buy your new vehicle and get it financed all in one spot.

If not time for a new vehicle, maybe you should check the towing capacity on the vehicle you have.

To find out if you can tow, locate the vehicle towing capacity section in your owner’s manual. That will give you an idea of whether or not you can tow a trailer. If your manual doesn’t mention this, you can always give us a call, and we’ll be happy to check for you.

You can do engine damage if the weight exceeds your car’s towing capacity, so it’s always best to check before you try it.

Towing Safety Checklist

Cooling System – Added weight adds a strain on your engine, which puts strain on the cooling system. Before you tow, make sure your radiator is properly filed and the hoses are in good shape. Inspect your water pump, thermostat and cooling fan, too.  Remember, it’s going to run hotter than normal with a load, so prepare the engine accordingly.

Brakes – Make sure the brake lights on the trailer and the vehicle are working. Make sure that your brakes can handle the additional weight of a trailer when you need to stop. Replace worn brakes.

Fluids – Towing adds stress on your engine, so check all of the fluids before you leave. Your brake fluid needs to be at the proper level, as should your transmission fluid.

Shocks and springs – Before your tow, check your suspension for wear. Don’t forget your hub bearings. If you have any signs of bad hubs like a wobble or wheel play, don’t tow.  Call us and we’ll replace them for you.

Hitch – Check to ensure it’s tight and that you are not exceeding its capacity.

Chains – Don’t forget to add chains to the trailer. They’ll keep the trailer with the vehicle should the hitch come undone.

Tires – Make sure your trailer tires are properly inflated to meet the load.

Wiring – Check your wiring to make sure it’s connected and nothing has shorted out.

Mirrors – Check your view from all of the side mirrors. If you can’t see, consider adding a mirror extension to the vehicle.

If you need to tow, but don’t know if you can get your vehicle ready, come by and see us. Our ASE Certified technicians are experts in getting your vehicle prepared for all types of adventures. You can call us or make an appointment online. Either way, we can get you ready to go.

Adult Night Out on the Washington Peninsula

Nothing is more relaxing than an adult night out. Whether you’re wandering around local shopping areas after dark or seeing a movie, there is something relaxing about being away from all of your responsibilities.

What would make it even better is a wine or beer tasting tour.

We’ve found the best spots for sips and suds.

Rolling Bay Wine Tasting – Bainbridge Island

When it comes to limited quantities of hand-crafted premium wines, then Rolling Bay Winery is a place to visit. They offer wine tastings for the public, but reservations are required to accommodate the crowds. You can join their membership program and attend member-exclusive events, as well.

Wine tasting is limited to the spring, so contact them for more information. https://www.rollingbaywinery.com/

Fletcher Bay Winery – Bainbridge Island

Wine Down Wednesdays with the crew at Fletcher Bay Winery where you’ll enjoy live music and drink specials. The tasting room is open every day at select hours, so check their website for more information on that. While it is a bit more upscale than the winery, you’ll still find it a casual setting.

The winery has a back patio where you can sit in comfort all year-round. There’s a kid’s play area that features toys and DVDs to entertain them while you entertain your taste buds.  https://www.fletcherbaywinery.com/

House 11 Taproom and Bottle Shop – Port Gamble

Sit outside at the picnic tables on the emerald green lawn on a sunny day and enjoy the fine wines of the House 11 Taproom. While not affiliated with any local winery, they do offer local beers like the Agate Pass Amber from Hood Canal Brewing on tap.

They offer goodies like popcorn, peanuts, kale salads and sardine bruschetta, as well as herbed olives and soft pretzels. It’s a great place to try some local beers and munch on a diverse menu of foods. https://www.house11taproom.com/

Since we’re talking about breweries, here are some places where you’ll find a selection of craft beers made from the finest waters in the PNW. 

Yoked Farmhouse and Brewery – Port Orchard

In addition to on tap beers like Farmhand IPA and Luna’s Stout, this brewery features fresh produce when in season. You can add a selection of green beans, summer squash and raspberries to your shopping bag while you enjoy the latest brews. Their farmhouse brews change and sell out, so if you find something you like, buy it in a growler.

In addition to vegies and beers, they also offer fresh meat and cut flowers for the whole farm experience.

Echoes Brewing – Poulsbo

Echoes’ taproom is now open and ready for a family-friendly night out. Join them for events like sports, pie eating and of course, lots of beer selections from their craft brewery.

They are open from noon to 10 p.m. and offer many ales like Golden Blonde, Monk’s Indiscretion and Dubbel. They also create malts, ryes and spicy ginger ale.  https://echoesbrewing.com/

Hood Canal Brewery – Kingston

As mentioned above on tap at House 11 Taproom, this brewery is located on the Hood Canal area and offers a taproom for your enjoyment. They have 13 beers on tap and feature signature house brews that you can enjoy while gazing out onto the water.

They offer kegs, growlers and bottles of their creations. You’ll find their beers in restaurants, grocery stores and bars. It’s best to come in person and enjoy it straight from their taps. https://www.hoodcanalbrewery.com/

Seven Seas Brewing Company – Gig Harbor

Gig Harbor is the home of Seven Seas Brewing Company, and the taproom and brewery offer wines and beers. You can enjoy a cider in their spacious taproom or pull up a chair on the waterfront. While they don’t serve food, they do allow outside food to be brought in, so bring your own picnic or order from a nearby restaurant.


Silver City Restaurant & Brewery – Silverdale

Silver City Brewery is home to seasonal and core beers like Ridgetop Red Ale and Tropic Haze. The seasonal brews like Ziggy Zoggy and Mystic Mojo are available on tap and in some cases, in cans or bottles during their brewing cycle.

An Oktoberfest Lager and Irresistible Bliss strawberry vanilla IPA can spice up the season.


No matter what time of the year it is, these wines and beers are sure to offer a delightful way to spend an afternoon.

Like the Seasons

Just like the seasons, your car or truck has changing needs. Here are some of the most important things to do to get ready.

For the Summer

  • Brake Check – Rain. You know it’s going to, so be prepared to spend a lot of time in it. Make sure you can stop by doing a brake check. Check the fluids, the pads, the rotors and the calipers. If the brakes grab, you might need a new calipers. If the brakes scream, you might need new pads or shoes. If you don’t know what brake parts you need, bring them to us, and we’ll diagnose your brake problems.
  • AC Belt – It’s going to be warm, so make sure your belt is in good shape. A squealing AC unit means something is not right. Other indications that there may be AC problems include warm air from the vents, burning smell through the vents and fluid leaks. We have you covered on this one, too.
  • Coolant – Make sure your coolant level is at 50/50 for summer driving.

For the Winter

  • TiresMake sure you have enough tread and replace the tires if you don’t. Check the tire pressure regularly because cold weather causes your tires to lose pressure.  Have them rotated and balanced for optimal wear.
  • Battery – Your battery works overtime in the cold, so if you noticed any problems with it before the cold months, replace it before it dies.
  • Oil Change – Use lighter-weight oil in the winter.
  • Coolant – Replace summer coolant and make sure that the mix is right for the temperatures outside.

At Kitsap Auto Outlet, We’re here to help you with these things and more. Bring your vehicle by, and we’ll help you get it ready for the upcoming season. Our ASE Certified technicians know what you’re up against and are prepared to help you get through the seasons. Call us or use our online form to set up your appointment today.

7 Educational Escapes for the Family

Even if you only have a few hours to get away, there are plenty of local places ready to entertain and educate you.

Maritime Museum – Poulsbo

Ever wonder what it would have been like to be one of the original mariners who traveled Puget Sound ferrying passengers from Seattle to Poulsbo? When you see the replica pilothouse from the Hyak that was one of the fastest mosquito fleet ships, you’ll get an idea of how much the residents relied upon this “magic carpet” ride to and from the peninsula.

In addition to the Maritime Museum, you can walk across the street to the Heritage Museum where they have more exhibits than room, so there are rotating exhibits.  At any given time, you might be treated to displays that explain the founding of the city, how farming in North Kitsap developed or information on the churches and schools of the district.

Kitsap History Museum – Bremerton

Bremerton is the home of the Kitsap History Museum where you’ll find everything you need to know about Kitsap in one place. It shares its home with another unique museum – The Aurora Valentinetti Puppet Museum. If someone in your party isn’t interested in looking at historical documents, maybe they’ll like puppets.

The Kitsap History Museum is home to thousands of exhibits that include textiles, artifacts and photographs. The textiles on display include military uniforms and quilts. The artifacts include furniture, tools, machines, artwork, clocks and crafts. The extensive collection of photos includes daguerreotypes and glass slides.

In addition, they have an archive featuring books, maps and newspaper clippings. Everything you ever wanted to know about Kitsap is housed in this museum.

Other museums to visit are:

Harbor History Museum – Gig Harbor – Many of the exhibits in the Harbor History Museum are dedicated to the heritage of Gig Harbor, but they also offer events like the Sip and Stroll wine-tasting walk along the harbor. Other events include talks on nuclear power and Mount St. Helens. 

Elandan Gardens – Port Orchard – If you’re looking for something a little different than a traditional museum, then the Elandan Gardens may be your destination. They are home to a stunning bonsai collection located on the shores of Puget Sound. The plants reside among waterfalls, sculptures and ponds. It’s a great place to walk and relax as you admire the artistry of bonsai.

Log Cabin Museum in the Sidney Museum – Port Orchard – The Sidney Museum is a non-profit organization that preserves and promotes local history and events. They host regional and local artists and are the home of the Log Cabin Museum where you can experience an ongoing story about the fictional Orchard family as they go through day-to-day life in South Kitsap.

Suquamish Museum – Suquamish  – This museum is dedicated to the People of the Clear Salt Water. It includes the history of the Suquamish peoples, as well as the Suquamish today.  Chief Seattle Days are open to the public.

Point No Point Lighthouse – Hansville – Explore what is considered to be the oldest lighthouse on Puget Sound. It stands as a warning to mariners that the Point No Point north entrance to the Puget Sound should be avoided. This lighthouse is on the National Register of Historic Places. You can visit the original keeper’s quarters and the home of the first lighthouse keeper in 1879, John S. Maggs.

Important History

Do you know the history of your car? If you’re the only one who has owned the car, it’s pretty easy to figure out its history, but if you bought the car from someone else, it might be hard to determine whether it had been taken care of regularly.

When you buy your next car or truck from us, we can tell you how well it was maintained. We offer a 90-day 3,000-mile powertrain limited warranty on all qualified vehicles. 

When you get ready to trade your car in, will you be able to tell the next owner exactly what you had done to it?

If not, then let’s start with a maintenance schedule now.

  • Oil – No matter what, you should always log your oil and filter changes. You can write them in the owner’s manual or keep the receipts, but keep a log. This will show that you maintained your engine, and that will help with its resale value. 
  • Tire and Batteries – In addition to logging your oil changes, keep a record and receipts of your tire and battery purchases. Since these parts come with warranties, it’s important to know how much expected life is left in them.

Create a service schedule – we can help you with this -if you don’t have one yet. The manufacturer recommends certain parts be changed at certain miles. Our ASE Certified technicians know cars and their recommended maintenance schedule, so we can get you on track.

Here are some of the things that the manufacturer recommends be checked and replaced:

Timing belt/chain – This master belt or chain keeps all of your mechanical parts moving. It synchronizes the camshaft and the pistons, which keeps everything moving smoothly. The belts/chains need replacement at certain intervals, depending upon your car’s manufacturer. If you don’t change it, and it breaks, your engine stops. There can be significant damage to the engine at this point.

Belts and Hoses – These parts are subject to high heat and wear. A leaking water hose can cause your engine to overheat. A worn belt can cause parts like the water pump to stop working, which also can cause your engine to overheat. There are belts on the AC unit, the fan and the power steering that also need to be checked.

Fuses and Lights – If you keep track of when you change them, then it’s easier to plan for the next set of headlights, turn signals or fuses.

Tire Rotation and Balance – Your tires will last you longer if you rotate and balance them at regular intervals.

When you have our service department set you up on regularly scheduled maintenance, you don’t have to worry about when the parts were serviced or replaced. We’ll worry for you.

Call us or schedule your appointment with our service department now.

6 Road Trip Stops on the Kitsap Peninsula

The Kitsap Peninsula has so many things to offer, that the hardest part is choosing your destination. It always depends on what you like to do, so we’ve compiled a list of places and their highlights that may appeal to you. Plug them into your GPS and hop on the road and go.


We’re sure you already know that Poulsbo is considered Little Norway, thanks to the influx of Norwegian settlers, which are celebrated annually during Viking Fest. Things you may not know about Poulsbo is that it is very pet and kid-friendly, or that it was considered a town that feels like Europe according to National Geographic.

The breweries are award winners and the culture is diverse, so Front Street is an intoxicating place to be with the smell of brewing beer and baking bread. Art galleries abound for those who would like a memento of their trip to this bay town. The history museum offers a condensed history of the town and surrounding areas.

So many options await you on the edge of the bay. 


Centrally located Silverdale is home to all of the usual outdoor activities you’d expect from Kitsap Peninsula like hiking, biking and boating. Settled on the banks of Dyes Inlet, it is a destination for swimmers, too. The charm of Silverdale makes it a romantic stopover for those on their honeymoons or a great place for date night. There’s nothing more romantic than dining at night while lights dance on the water. That and fresh seafood on your plate.

The Silverdale Waterfront Park offers pet- and kid-friendly amenities and beach access.

If shopping is your thing, then make the Kitsap Mall a must-do stopover where you’ll find the largest shopping mall outside of the big cities of Seattle and Tacoma.


We’re lucky to have Bremerton in our backyards. When was the last time you headed over and acted like a tourist?

If you said “never”, here are some things that are very touristy about Bremerton:

The Puget Sound Navy Museum is where you can experience what life is like living on a nuclear aircraft carrier or seeing how the Navy uses 3D printers to make spare parts while at sea.

Play a round at the Gold Mountain Golf Club where you’ll play through tree-lined fairways. It’s walking-friendly with little elevation change and home to two courses: Olympic Course and Cascade Course. Finish up your day in the Clubhouse where seating is always panoramic.

Of course, in addition to these tourist things to do, Bremerton hosts trails and parks for every age group.

Gig Harbor

It’s on the water, so water sports and events are a must in Gig Harbor. From paddleboarding to kayaking to boating, if you like water, you’ll love it here.  If you don’t have your own equipment, there are numerous places to rent kayaks and paddleboards.

Chartered cruises will take you through the sound at sunset where you can enjoy a romantic evening on the water with friends and family. For the adventurous soul, there are chartered sailboat cruises with an overnight stay on the boat.


If you’re looking for a scenic drive with an even more scenic endpoint, then Hansville is the destination. From the northern tip of the peninsula, you can see Whidbey Island and Puget Sound. If it’s the right time of the year, you can also see birds and whales. Or the salmon run.

Hansville is the home of the Point No Point lighthouse which is one of the oldest lighthouses on the sound. It is surrounded by parks, beaches and wetlands. There are numerous hikes recommended by the community and those include trails and wildlife viewing stations where you may be able to see eagles, falcons and kingfishers, as well as skunks, deer and weasels.

For those who want more action and less nature, drop into the Point Casino and Hotel where gaming and dining meet up.

Sunset Beach

If you’re looking for a getaway from the usual, hop in the car and head south to Sunset Beach. This picnic and sun-bathing friendly beach offers hiking trails, a play area for the kids and a boat launch. It’s a good place to put your kayak in and head over to the San Juan Islands.

The kids will love exploring the tide pools where they might see urchins and barnacles. Take along a marine field guide and a camera. Step carefully around the pools, as these creatures are very much alive.

A trip to Sunset Beach can be highly educational no matter how old you are.

Before You Go

Like anything else in life, it helps to be prepared before you head off on any journey.

At Kitsap Auto Outlet, we’re here to do our part to make that trip an adventure and not a disaster.

Before leaving, here is a basic checklist of things to do for your vehicle:

  • Clean the headlights – A little bit of toothpaste on a rag can take a lot of dirt and grime off your headlights.
  • Check your fluid levels – Oil, coolant, power steering fluid, wiper fluid, brake fluid and transmission fluids should be checked.
  • Cabin Filter – Make sure that your cabin filter is not sending dirt and dust back into the cabin of your car.
  • Wiper Blades – Make sure the blades are in good shape should you run into a downpour or get caught in snow flurries.
  • Lights – Do all of your turn signals, brakes and running lights work?

If you’re in a hurry and don’t have time to do a pre-trip check, then give us a call. We’ll be happy to check your fluids, do an oil change, check your tires and do anything else you need to get on the road. Our ASE Certified technicians will go over your vehicle for you and recommend any replacement parts you might need. All of our parts are OEM factory parts made from quality components that last.

You might not have time, but we do. Call us or use our online form to schedule an appointment today.

5 Places on Kitsap Peninsula unlike Everything Else

Got a weekend without anything penciled in? You’ve been working hard and you finally have a few days off. Maybe you’re at a loss as to what to do. Here are a few suggestions for a day trip.

Art Walk – Gig Harbor

The Waters Edge Gallery in downtown Gig Harbor sponsors what is known as one of the best art walks in the Northwest according to Sunset Magazine.

This local gallery is home to a large selection of art, artists and affordable prints. They offer limited editions, canvas transfers and even needlework in their gallery. Their artists include local, regional and national artists. They also offer framing services, so go ahead and buy that print.

Pick up a souvenir of your trip to Gig Harbor that you can hang with pride on your walls.

More information can be found at  https://watersedgegallery.com/.

Bremerton Art Walk – Bremerton

Bremerton is home to a diverse and expansive fine arts district that is the envy of the Northwest. This district includes jazz, galleries and museums.

Once a month the artists gather outside and show off their latest art offerings. You’ll find paintings, prints, pottery, fine art and gifts for all of the discerning people on your gift list.

In addition to art, you’ll be treated to a variety of musicians and other entertainment. There is a park where you can relax and enjoy any of the refreshments you found along the way.

Walk a few more minutes and cross the bridge to Manette where you’ll find antique shops, waterfront dining and cafes.

For more information on the art walk, see their website.  https://www.bremertonfirstfriday.org/

Oyster Fest – Shelton

It might be a bit of a trek from home, but if you love oysters as much as the Skokomish tribes did, then this festival is worth the drive to Shelton.

Since 1982, the oyster fest has been the home to shucking contests, wine tasting, oyster education and food. Lots and lots of food. They have also welcomed microbreweries into the fold, so you can taste-test beers made from the clearest waterways in Washington State.

The festival is run by the Skookum Rotary and proceeds go to scholarship awards, community grants, the Mason County science and engineering fair and giving the fourth graders in Mason County their very own dictionaries.

Want more information on the oyster fest? Click here. https://www.oysterfest.org/cms/

Ghost Walk – Port Gamble

Apparently, there are more than people who live in Port Gamble. The Walker-Ames Mansion has its share of spectral residents according to Paranormal Pete.  His ghost tours start at the Port Gamble Historic Museum, which is a great place to visit even when there aren’t any ghosts. Then you can end up at the Walker-Ames Museum where there are ghosts.

Paranormal Pete recommends that you bring a flashlight and dress for the weather.

A ghost walk in the Walker-Ames Mansion might be the perfect place to take a first date. If you dare.

For more information, check out Pete’s site here. https://www.portgambleparanormal.com/

Port Gamble Historic Museum – Port Gamble

Since we’re talking about Port Gamble, the museum makes a great place to explore the history of this quaint town with its New England roots. It is one of Washington State’s oldest towns and was founded in 1853 as a company town for the Puget Mill Company.

The museum is housed in the former sawmill for the Puget Mill Company and is located on 120-acres of historic homes, churches and streets filled with reaching elms and maples. It has all of the hallmarks of a New England village.

You’ll find artifacts from the original mill and town on display in the museum, as well as a history lesson on what it was like to live and work in a sawmill town.

For more information, see their site at https://www.portgamble.com/.

Reliable Transportation

What also is unlike everything else is your car or truck. Sure, there are a million and one vehicles on the road that look just like yours, but only yours is the one you rely on. To keep it reliable, you prepare it for the seasons, and you keep it well-maintained. Even so, age does a number on all things mechanical, so here are some signs that it might be time to stop working on it and find a newer vehicle that you can count on.

  • If you’re at 100,000 miles, it might be time to get a new vehicle. Today’s cars can go well in excess of 100,000 miles thanks to technology, better fluids and fuel, but do you want to? If you’re leaking any fluids, you should start to think about getting a new vehicle.
  • If your vehicle sounds strange when it shifts gears or you feel a surge, there might be some issues with the transmission. Transmissions are expensive, so it’s best to do preventative measures rather than repairs. A faulty transmission could be a good reason to look for something newer.
  • If your dashboard looks like a Christmas parade with all the lights on, then it’s time to start thinking about something new. The check engine light could be something as simple as a failing oxygen sensor to something as drastic as engine problems. The check engine light is your car’s computer’s way of throwing its hands in the air saying, “I don’t know. Have someone look at it.” You should have someone look at it. Other lights include the oil light, temperature gauge and tire pressure.
  • If it’s smoking, you don’t need us to tell you it’s time to trade it in.

All kidding aside, we have a large selection of preowned vehicles that are dependable, reliable and come with a warranty, so don’t hesitate to stop by and see us at Kitsap Auto Outlet, no matter what condition your trade-in is in. In fact, why don’t you make an appointment with our service department, and we’ll help you sort it out. Use the online appointment form or call us for a time today.