BASKETBALL: West Seattle High School boys’ season ends with district-playoffs loss to Garfield

(WSHS huddle in game’s final minute)

An intense game just ended at Bellevue College with a season-ending loss for the West Seattle High School boys – Garfield got this district’s final spot in the regional/state tournament, 60-53 over the Wildcats. Details and photos after we get back to HQ. (This is the same gym where the WSHS girls will play Cleveland for the district title at 8:15 tonight.)

VIDEO: Songs and stories @ Arbor Heights Elementary’s Black History Month celebration

(Starr W., Simone S., Zoe P., Tevia & Taytum C., Denise K. singing ‘Lift Every Voice and Sing’)

“We’re here to remember, honor, and celebrate Black history and Black culture, which is American culture.”

With that mission, Arbor Heights Elementary students and staff presented songs and stories in an hour-long assembly this past Thursday afternoon. They were each other’s audiences – joined by many parents, too. A big ovation greeted AH staffer Rosslyn Shea, who emceed the assembly (and kindly invited us to cover it).

She explained the backstory of Black History Month – which became a monthlong celebration in 1976, half a century after it began – “a time to remember the struggle, while remembering the accomplishments …” The program, directed and produced by Laura Drake, then began, with the anthem “Lift Every Voice and Sing” (top video). Ms. McAlpin‘s class sang “Ain’t Gonna Let Nobody Turn Me Around”; then Reyana H. portrayed Sojourner Truth, telling her story of slavery, and marriage with five children.

She was 30 when slavery ended in NY State in 1827. “I began to work with other abolitionists … I was also a strong believer in women’s rights.” Student Artise B., portrayed Frederick Douglass. “It was against the law for slaves to learn to read and write,” but he secretly taught himself.

“Once I learned how to read, I taught other slaves.” He was an adviser to President Lincoln. “A white man’s happiness cannot be purchased by a black man’s misery.”

Ms. Irish‘s class sang “Keep Your Eyes on the Prize.” A poem by Langston Hughes was performed by students Simone D. and Naimo M. Then pilot Bessie Coleman‘s story was told by Mariah R., speaking of achievement despite discrimination.

“I opened the possibility for women of color to become pilots,” though her life was cut short by an airshow-rehearsal accident.

Booker T. Washington, the influential educator, was portrayed by Joaquin L.. “Once I saw white children inside a schoolhouse reading books, that was what I wanted to do.” He ran a school “that is still going strong today.” He closed by reading this quote spiritedly: “If you want to lift yourself up, lift up someone else!” Then Ms. Ciocca‘s class sang “Woke Up This Morning with My Mind Set on Freedom,” and Ms. Amble‘s first-grade class performed to Ella Fitzgerald‘s version of “Old MacDonald Had a Farm.”


That was followed by Ms. Wilson‘s class with “If You Miss Me at the Back of the Bus.” Then, from even-more-recent history, more historic character portrayals – two trailblazing Black candidates for President, U.S. Rep. Shirley Chisholm (by Phalestine W.) and Rev. Jesse Jackson (by Zinneddine A.). “What is the American Dream? The American Dream is one big tent.”

Two third-grade classes sang along with Sly and the Family Stone‘s “Everyday People” – “Sometimes I’m right, I can be wrong …” they raise their index fingers on the chorus.

“Love’s in Need of Love Today” by Stevie Wonder was the afterschool program’s presentation, and then “We Shall Overcome” as a closing song, with everyone in the auditorium invited to join in. And on the way out, we stopped to notice student work on the walls:

AH and other Seattle Public Schools are now out for a week of mid-winter break, with classes resuming Monday, February 26th.

YOUTH SPORTS: Big sign-up season for West Seattle Baseball – now seeking coaching help!

(Photo courtesy West Seattle Baseball)

As youth-sports signup season starts, West Seattle Baseball registration has closed, and it went so well, the league is looking for coaching help. From Karen Rains:

Registration closed this week for West Seattle Baseball and interest and sign-up has exceeded all expectations! We are looking for another Pony coach! Know any former players (college or above) who would like to lead a team? Any potential lead is a good one. As always, the league is willing to support any volunteer as much as possible with practice plans and other coaches to help lead a few practices if necessary. We don’t want to turn any players away!

Please reach out to the Pony Commish, Nathan – if you are interested or have an idea for us!

Better Metro bus service for Admiral/Alki? Councilmember Herbold’s request to SDOT

It’s been a hot discussion topic in WSB transit/transportation coverage for a long time – north West Seattle’s relative lack of Metro service compared to other areas. In her newest weekly update, Councilmember Lisa Herbold announced she is asking SDOT – via the letter embedded above – to find out what it would cost to fix that. (Though Metro is a county service, city dollars pay for some of the service.) If you haven’t seen it via e-mail or web, here’s her update:

As District 1 Councilmember, I regularly hear from residents of the Admiral and Alki neighborhoods about the lack of daytime and evening bus service to and from Downtown. Non-rush hour service on Bus Route 56, which connects Alki and Admiral to Downtown, was eliminated in 2012.

As a result, Admiral is the only Urban Village in Seattle without off-peak transit service to Downtown. It is also the only Urban Village not served by the Frequent Transit Network included in the Seattle Transit Master Plan. Urban Villages were adopted by Seattle in the 1994 Comprehensive Plan to direct growth to areas with enhanced services, so the lack of service is noteworthy, and unique. The lack of off-peak service to Downtown for an urban village also does not seem consistent with our approach to managing growth.

I have written a letter to SDOT Director Goran Sparrman, requesting that SDOT assess the costs associated with improving off-peak transit service on Route 56, and inform me of the City’s funding capacity to meet this need with Seattle Transportation Benefit District funds passed by Seattle voters in Proposition 1 in late 2014, which directly funds bus service in Seattle. You can see the letter here. While King County Metro operates bus service, since 2015, with the passage by Seattle voters of Proposition 1, Seattle funds additional bus service.

Background information is included below about how the Admiral Urban Village fits into the city’s transportation and growth plans.

After the State Legislature passed the Growth Management Act in 1990, to stop regional sprawl and direct growth into designated areas. The City of Seattle adopted the Urban Village Strategy in its passage of the 1994 Comprehensive Plan. By 1999, the City had completed passage of neighborhood plans throughout Seattle, to implement the state Growth Management Act, and to direct growth into areas with enhanced services to match the growth.

Seattle has six Urban Centers, six Hub Urban Villages and eighteen Residential Urban Villages. Of those 30 areas targeted for growth in the 2035 Comprehensive Plan, only Admiral lacks off-peak transit service to Downtown.

Figures from the Seattle Transit Master Plan illustrate the unique status of the Admiral Urban Village. Figure 3-1 shows the City Capacity Transit Vision for High Capacity Transit Corridors. Figure 1-2 shows how these current and planned corridors align with the Urban Centers, Hub Urban Villages, and Residential Urban Villages adopted in Seattle’s Comprehensive Plan.

All of Seattle’s six Urban Centers and six Hub Urban Villages are included in a corridor—nearly all of which go to Downtown. In addition, 16 of Seattle’s 18 Residential Urban Villages are included in a corridor. The only ones that aren’t included in one of the transit corridors for RapidRide, Light Rail, Priority Bus Corridors, and the Streetcar are 1) Admiral and 2) South Park.

Figure 4-1 shows the status of the Frequent Transit Network as of March 2016; it notes a few areas on the map for “Priority Upgrade to Frequent,” including the Admiral Urban Village.

The Frequent Transit network included in the Transit Master Plan is designed to provide service every 15 minutes or better, 18-24 hours a day, seven days a week. This document shows bus routes that meet the frequent transit service level for land use purposes (SMC 23.84A.038), i.e. 15 minutes or less for at least 12 hours per day, 6 days a week, and transit headways of 30 minutes or less for at least 18 hours every day.

The current Frequent Transit Network using land use standards serves 29 of the 30 areas targeted for growth, but not Admiral.

Transportation Figure 5, from the Seattle 2035 Comprehensive Plan, shows the Planned Frequent Transit Network, which includes SW Admiral Way through the Urban Village.

It appears that among Seattle’s 30 Urban Centers and Urban Villages, the Admiral Urban Village is one of only two not included the High Capacity Transit Network, and uniquely 1) is not served by the current Frequent Transit Network, and 2) has no off-peak bus service to Downtown. In addition, it saw a decrease in bus service to Downtown, with the 2012 elimination of off-peak service to Downtown on bus route 56. No buses leave for Downtown after 9 a.m., and return buses from Downtown operate only during evening rush hour.

Given the geographic distribution of jobs and work patterns, direct access to Downtown is important. Unless we are able to provide sufficient bus service to the Admiral Urban Village, it is less likely it will be able to accommodate its share of growth.

Metro Service prioritizes crowding, schedule reliability and service frequency. Proposition 1 noted that revenues would be used for these purposes, consistent with the Seattle Transit Master Plan and Metro’s Service Guidelines.

However, I believe we are missing an important element of equity in not considering how we can increase ridership in areas with low ridership and minimal options available to improve ridership. The lack of off-peak service to Downtown for an Urban Village also does not seem consistent with our approach to managing growth.

While King County Metro’s Service Guidelines target a minimum service level of at least every 60 minutes, even an exception for less frequent off-peak service would be an improvement.

If you would like to talk with Councilmember Herbold about this or anything else, her next “in-district office hours” event is Friday (February 23rd), 2-7 pm at South Park Community Center (8319 8th Ave. S.).

West Seattle Saturday: Something for everyone!

(Anna’s Hummingbird, photographed during a recent sunbreak by Mark Wangerin)

Eclectic list, both in venues and activities, for today/tonight – see for yourself!

EARTHQUAKE EDUCATION: Not in West Seattle, but at least one well-known local is participating – it’s the public day at the Living with Earth Hazards in Western Washington – 2018 Geohazards Symposium at McCaw Hall @ Seattle Center. WS-residing reporter/author Sandi Doughton, who wrote ” Full Rip 9.0: The Next Big Earthquake in the Pacific Northwest,” is keynote speaker at 9 am and 1:30 pm. Full list of the day’s speakers – all free and open to the public – is here. More info here. (321 Mercer St.)

HIAWATHA COMMUNITY CENTER CLOSURE: Starting today and continuing through next weekend, the center is closed for floor-refinishing work.

SEWING GUILD: The American Sewing Guild‘s monthly neighborhood meeting is 10 am-noon at The Kenney; all welcome. (7125 Fauntleroy Way SW)

MEET THE MAHONIAS: It’s not just a work party, it’s a citizen science project! 10 am-noon at South Seattle College (WSB sponsor) – more info in our calendar listing. (6000 16th SW)

WSHS BASKETBALL PLAYOFF GAMES: The district playoffs continue with games today for both West Seattle High School teams, both at Bellevue College. At 3 pm the boys play Garfield in a must-win game to determine who gets the final spot in regionals. At 8:15 pm, the girls play Cleveland in the district title game. (3000 Landerholm Circle SE)

TALK WITH YOUR SCHOOL-BOARD REP: 3-5 pm at High Point Library, drop in for this month’s community conversation with West Seattle/South Park’s rep on the Seattle School Board, Leslie Harris, who is also the president of the board. (35th SW/SW Raymond)

ROLLER DERBY: The Rainier Roller Girls’ second bout of the season is tonight, 5:45-8:30 pm at Southgate Roller Rink – full details here. The theme is a flashback to the ’80s, and you can be part of it too. (9646 17th SW)

MUSICAL LOVEFEST & DONATION DRIVE: 7 pm-midnight at South Park Hall, with a simple price of admission – a box of tampons (you’ve heard about this, right?) or pads, or socks, for people experiencing homelessness. (1253 S. Cloverdale)

BRANDI CARLILE: 7 pm in-store at Easy Street Records – “to celebrate her new album, By The Way, I Forgive You, which drops today! Buy Brandi’s new album at our store … and we’ll give you a wristband that will get you into the in-store & signing.” Online sales don’t qualify you for this – so get down to the store, and then to the show. (California/Alaska)

MALLET HEAD: 7:30 pm at Kenyon Hall – “Cool jazz fills the hall once again, courtesy of Seattle’s vibes wizard, Tom Collier” and friends. (7904 35th SW)

‘NEXT TO NORMAL’: Second performance of Twelfth Night Productions‘ new play, 7:30 pm at Youngstown Cultural Arts Center. Tickets available online as well as at the venue. (4408 Delridge Way SW)

THE ABBAGRAPHS: ’70s nostalgia with The ABBAgraphs and DJ Vodka Twist, 8 pm at Parliament Tavern. “’70s attire encouraged; contests and prizes for best ’70s threads!” $8 cover. 21+. (4210 SW Admiral Way)

THERE’S EVEN MORE … on our complete-calendar page.

WEST SEATTLE WEATHER: Today’s updated wind alert

The National Weather Service has made some changes to the Wind Advisory alert for today, first issued Friday morning. See the new version here. It’s now in effect 9 am-6 pm, and at the heart of it, “Southerly winds will increase to 20 to 35 mph with gusts near 45 mph about midday.” Strongest winds are expected this afternoon, and power outages are possible, so keep everything charged, and look around outside for anything that could cause a problem if blown around.

FOLLOWUP: Arson investigation after eight SFD calls in five days at Fauntleroy Lofts

(WSB photo)

When a Seattle Fire Department “full response” was sent at midmorning Friday to 5949 California SW – the 2-year-old microstudio apartment building known as Fauntleroy Lofts – it was the eighth time SFD had been called there in the past five days. And while today’s “full response” was for a kitchen fire, some of the other incidents have led to an arson investigation.

Archived Real-Time 911 logs show two calls there on Monday (February 11th), an Automatic Fire Alarm call at 2:56 pm and a 3 Red call at 4:40 pm. There were three on Thursday (February 15th), Automatic Fire Alarm calls at 2:57 pm and 4:39 pm and a 1 Red call at 5:44 pm. Today there were three more – an Automatic Fire Alarm call at 7:04 am, the “full response” at 10:25 am, and an Automatic Fire Alarm at 12:22 pm. Before that, online records show, there hadn’t been an SFD dispatch to 5949 California SW since a fire-alarm call on January 10th.

Two of the calls are linked to police reports classified as “reckless burning” – one on Monday, one on Thursday. The narrative explaining the reasons for that classification isn’t available online; SFD wouldn’t comment on the specifics, referring us to SPD because it’s the “lead agency for the investigation of these incidents.”

A tenant tells WSB that one Monday incident happened because “somebody took a roll of toilet paper, lit it on fire, and threw it into the hallway” and that the same thing happened again Thursday, both times on the same floor. Another incident, the tenant said, was a kitchen fire, while others involved someone “pulling the fire alarm.”

In e-mail to WSB, that resident and another one expressed concerns for their personal safety and security, and concerns that the building’s management/ownership was not doing enough about the situation. We sent an inquiry to an e-mail on the building’s website, and the manager responded that they would forward it to the owners, who e-mailed us this response:

We are writing you in response to an ongoing arson investigation at our building Fauntleroy Lofts. We take this all EXTREMELY serious, as the safety of our tenants has been grossly violated. We are working directly with both the Seattle Fire Dept. Arson Investigation Team and The Seattle Police Dept. to catch the person responsible for setting the fires and false alarms. Although we cannot discuss details of the investigation, we are working to locate and prosecute this criminal to the fullest extent of the law.

As owners, the safety of the both people living in our building and the surrounding community is our highest concern. Perception may be that nothing is being done, but please be assured we are doing everything we physically & legally can to provide our tenants with the safety and security they deserve. Although this may make it appear “nothing is being done”, our biggest priority is following protocol with the Arson investigation team so we can put an end to this so our building is safe again. ANY suspicious activity should be reported IMMEDIATELY to the Arson Investigation Team @ 1-800-55-ARSON or the Seattle Police Dept. Arson/Bomb Unit @ 206-684-8980.

The Owners of Fauntleroy Lofts

According to King County Assessor records, the building has 38 units.

Remembering Darrell Burleigh

From the son of longtime West Seattleite Darrell Burleigh:

I just wanted you to know that my father passed away recently.

He was more than just the best dad a son could hope for. He was a great man. He led by quiet example. He touched many lives and everyone liked him.

I’m sure he will be remembered by those who worked alongside him at the West Seattle Post Office, his friends at the West Seattle Golf Course, most recently those he helped at the Granada condos, and fellow residents at DayStar Assisted Living. For all of his adult life, he was a member of the West Seattle Christian Church. His life was Christ-like.

Plans for a memorial or funeral service are pending.

(WSB publishes West Seattle obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available, to

VIDEO: Chief Sealth International High School’s Multicultural Night 2018

It’s been a busy week at local schools, with special events before Mid-Winter Break, including Chief Sealth International High School‘s annual Multicultural Night. We stopped in last night and caught a song by the guitarists and singers you see in our video above. The entertainment schedule also included mariachi, spoken word, and Native American, Latino, Polynesian, Cambodian, and Latin dancers, Some groups tabled, including the Japanese language program:

Other tablers included the Black Student Union, Gender and Sexuality Club, African Student Association, Key Club, Green Team, Thai Club, and Model UN.

Families and community members were invited to watch the performances:

This was a free event – if you missed it this year, watch our calendar next school year!

SPORTS: Kennedy swimmers/divers in state finals

Thanks to Brent Lindblom for the update – you’re invited to go cheer for swimmers and divers in the finals tomorrow!

Congratulations to the Kennedy HS Swim and Dive Team advancing to the State Finals this weekend. Though Kennedy Catholic High School is technically located in Burien, West Seattle has many students attending the school.

Swim Finals:
Jack Fenster: 200 Medley Relay, 50 Free style, 200 Free Relay, 400 Free Relay
Ty Lindblom: 200 Medley Relay, 100 Back Stroke, 200 Free Relay, 400 Free Relay
Brendon Stoll: 200 Medley Relay and 200 Free Relay
Luke Dorsett: 200 Free Relay and 400 Free Relay
Ben Kinerk: 200 Medley Relay an 400 Free Relay
Alternates: Riley Duvall, JJ Hartog, Trey Hunt

Dive Finals:
Ryan Klem: Men 1 meter diving

Location: King County Aquatics Center – 650 SW Campus Dr, Federal Way

Finals: Saturday (February 17th)
Warm-up: 1:10 pm – Finals events start: 2:20 pm
State Admission Prices: Day Passes- Adult: $10 – Seniors/Students: $8 – Children Under 5: Free
(Please note that it is cash only)

Anybody else local in the state finals? Let us know!

FOLLOWUP: State announces fine for Duwamish River diesel spill

(U.S. Coast Guard photo, February 2017)

The state has announced a fine for a diesel spill that followed a tugboat incident in our area one year ago. Here’s the Ecology Department news release:

The Washington Department of Ecology has fined Island Tug and Barge $8,000 for a spill of diesel fuel into the Duwamish River on Feb. 28, 2017. The penalty cites the company for the spill itself and for not making immediate notifications, as required by state law.

The company’s tug Island Wind struck a barge in the West Waterway of the Duwamish on that date, , breaching its hull and a fuel tank, spilling approximately 1,340 gallons of diesel. The company and its contractor, Global Diving and Salvage, mounted a prompt response and recovered 1,273 gallons of the spill. Small, unrecoverable sheens escaped into Elliott Bay.

The notification to the state occurred more than 90 minutes after the incident. Oil spills to water must be immediately reported to the Washington Emergency Management Division and the National Response Center. See Ecology’s website for details.

In addition to the penalty, Ecology is billing Island Tug and Barge $3,000 to recover the state’s costs to oversee the response.

The company also faces, under state law, a Resource Damage Assessment for harm caused to public resources. Compensation could include a restoration and enhancement project or study, or the spiller may be assessed a monetary amount, to be paid into a state fund that issues grants to local governments for environmental restoration projects.

BASKETBALL: West Seattle HS boys beat Bellevue @ district playoffs

FIRST REPORT, 4:48 PM: We’re again at Sammamish High School on the Eastside for district playoffs, and the West Seattle High School boys have just won a decisive victory against Bellevue HS, 49-38, keeping the lead all game long. Next up, another must-win game for the Wildcats – 3 pm tomorrow at Bellevue College, they’ll play the winner of tonight’s Garfield-Cleveland game – for a slot in regionals. Photos and details later!

ADDED 7:45 PM: The Wolverines tried but just couldn’t stop the Wildcats, who were out to a 7-0 lead within two minutes and never looked back. #2 Elijah Nnanabu was the scoring (17 points) and rebounding standout; #5 Abdullahi Mohamed had a strong game too (11 points):

Tight West Seattle defense forced Bellevue to keep trying from outside, and for most of the game, that wasn’t working. Meantime, the Wildcat lead was added to by #23 Anthony Giomi (10 points) …

… and #24 Simon Harris, who extended the WSHS lead to 11-2 before Bellevue even got a second basket:

WSHS so owned the first quarter, it ended with them leading 21-4. But Bellevue tried a comeback at that point, with 9 unanswered points on 3 three-pointers, and suddenly the lead was down to 8 points. That’s as close as Bellevue could get. They trailed 32-18 at halftime and never got close. WSHS didn’t take anything for granted, though, chasing the ball whenever they got a chance.

#3 Kendall Green shot a 3-pointer that gave the Wildcats their biggest lead, 39-20, midway through the third quarter. And they kept a double-digit advantage the rest of the way, with the final score 49-38. We’ll add an update here when we know who they’re playing Saturday afternoon.

ADDED SATURDAY MORNING: They’re playing Garfield.

CRIME WATCH FOLLOWUP: Puget Ridge raid subject charged, back in jail

You might recall that photo, provided by police on Monday when they announced the Sunday arrest of a man at a house on Puget Ridge. As we noted in an update to the story, he was released from jail Monday night on personal recognizance. Now, he’s back in jail, and he’s been charged: One felony drug charge is filed against 28-year-old Gregory Lee Thompson. The charging papers say police found “evidence of drug-dealing activity” at Thompson’s house – baggies and scales, along with the 400+ pills and meth listed in the police report. And the documents say prosecutors believe the 19 guns that also were found – though they are not the subject of a specific charge at this point – “increase the risk that the defendant will commit an act of violence as part of his drug dealing activity.” A $20,000 arrest warrant was issued when the charge was filed, and that’s why Thompson is back in jail as of this afternoon, just before he was due in court for a trial-readiness hearing in another drug case. That hearing has been rescheduled for next Friday.

WEST SEATTLE LIGHT RAIL: See the open house maps/charts with draft height, cross-streets

If you went to the Sound Transit light rail open house in West Seattle this past Tuesday – or the one last night in Ballard – you probably saw the maps/charts that were laid out on tables for sticky-note comments. They were a different way of presenting information about the “representative alignment” – the “starting point” routes and elevation – and so we asked ST if we could get digital copies to share. Today, they’re online, and with one more open house – downtown next Tuesday (February 20th), 5:30-7:30 pm – you might want to take a look. The West Seattle one is embedded above (and visible in PDF here); the SODO one is here; downtown, here; Ballard, here.

Also shown at the open houses, the Google Earth flyover of the draft plan – animated, but without narration – and it’s now available as a video clip:

The project is currently in what’s officially called the “early scoping” phase and Sound Transit wants to hear all your comments – about the draft plan, anything you would rather see instead, and any potential effects you envision – noise, traffic, whatever. You can also make those comments via the “online open house,” which will remain open until March 5th – go to

WEST SEATTLE CRIME WATCH: Stolen white Ford Edge

Another stolen vehicle you might be able to help find – Adam reports his fiancée’s car was stolen this morning in the Westwood area:

The car is a 2010 White Ford Edge. On the back right there is an obvious spot where there used to be a Detroit ‘D’ magnet. There is also another Michigan sticker on the back window. The front windshield is cracked.

Unfortunately we do not have the license plate number. We moved from Michigan not too long ago and do not have the new Washington plates memorized or written down.

They have filed a police report. If you think you see it, call 911.

UPDATE: ‘Full response’ at West Seattle apartment building at 5949 California SW

10:30 AM: Seattle Fire is sending a “full response” to 5949 California SW. This is an apartment building that’s had multiple fire alarms in recent days, including one earlier this morning. More to come.

10:35 AM: SFD says it’s reported as a kitchen fire, and that the building’s sprinkler system “contained” it.

10:44 AM: Our crew on scene confirms that no smoke is visible, no reports of any injuries; fire alarms inside the building can still be heard from outside. We’ll be asking about the previous alarms; the most recent one was at 7 am today, and there were three yesterday afternoon. Right now, please avoid California SW in the area – it’s blocked by the emergency responders.

10:52 AM: SFD confirms it’s a kitchen fire and it’s out. They’re not commenting on the other recent calls there. They expect California SW to reopen within about 45 minutes.

12:41 PM: A fire engine is back there now on a separate fire-alarm call.

West Seattle Friday: Theater, sports, music, more!

Half a dozen ways to spend the rest of your Friday:

FRIDAY AFTERNOON MATINEE: Terry’s “Greatest Movies You’ve Never Heard Of” series presents “The Book of Eli,” 1 pm at Senior Center of West Seattle. Free popcorn! (4217 SW Oregon)

BASKETBALL: It’s another 3:30 pm West Seattle HS vs. Bellevue HS district-playoff game at Sammamish HS – but this time, it’s the boys. (100 140th Ave SE, Bellevue)

FILM SCREENING & COMMUNITY DISCUSSION: “Get Out”, an Oscar-nominated film described as “a stinging criticism of white liberalism,” at Westside Unitarian Universalist Congregation, 7-10 pm. Info here. (7141 California SW)

‘BOBCAT BOB’: Live at C & P Coffee Company (WSB sponsor), it’s Bob “Bobcat Bob” Rice! 7-9 pm. (5612 California SW)

CAR SEAT HEADREST: 7 pm in-store at Easy Street Records, free and all-ages BUT entry is only guaranteed with a wristband given for pre-orders of the band’s new album – info here. (California/Alaska)

‘NEXT TO NORMAL’: 7:30 pm opening-night curtain for Twelfth Night Productions‘ new play, “an unflinching look at a suburban family struggling with the effects of mental illness.” At Youngstown Cultural Arts Center. (4408 Delridge Way SW)

MORE! for today, tonight, and beyond – just go to our complete-calendar page.

WEST SEATTLE WEATHER: Wind alert for Saturday

There’s been a lot of talk about wintry weather this weekend, but the only official National Weather Service alert for our area so far is one that warns of wind – 7 am-7 pm Saturday, a “wind advisory” with gusts possible up to 45 mph. See the full advisory here.

YOUTH SPORTS: West Seattle Soccer Club registering players for spring season

Continuing announcements for youth sports league signups: Tim McMonigle sends word that the West Seattle Soccer Club is midway through registration for its spring season:

8-game season (Sundays). First game is April 8; Last game is June 10.

No games on Mother’s Day or on the weekend of the Memorial Day holiday.

Age groups: U-06 to U-12

Spring Fee: $65 for U-06 to U-12 players. Includes World Cup jersey.

Spring Coaches meeting (and Annual General Meeting) will be held at 7:00 pm on Thursday, 3/29

Registration closes March 1 (late registrations placed on wait list)

Go here to sign up and/or find out more!

TRAFFIC/TRANSIT TODAY: Pre-holiday-weekend Friday watch

(SDOT MAP with travel times/video links; is the ‘low bridge’ closed? LOOK HERE)

6:59 AM: Good morning. So far, no incidents reported in/from West Seattle.

HOLIDAY WEEKEND AHEAD: Monday is Presidents Day, and that will affect transit schedules – no Water Taxi on Monday; Metro will run the “reduced weekday” service. Monday also will be the first day of a weeklong mid-winter break for Seattle Public Schools.

8:45 AM: A “heavy rescue” response is headed to West Marginal Way S. and South Holden [map].

8:50 AM: The response is already being downsized. No major injuries and no major traffic effects, per scanner.

VIDEO: 2-alarm SFD response for 2-house West Seattle fire east of Fairmount Park

(Photo tweeted by @apollo18 – part of the SFD response, and smoke in the air)

10:13 PM: A “full response” from Seattle Fire is headed to the 5200 block of 36th SW for a house fire east of Fairmount Park [map]. The first crews arriving are seeing flames. More to come.

10:17 PM: A second alarm is being called as SFD says two houses are involved. They’re also calling for utilities – one house is reported to have wires down in the back yard.

10:26 PM: Per scanner, “the fire is under control in both buildings.” No word of any injuries so far.

(WSB photo)

10:40 PM: Some of the units are being dismissed.

10:58 PM: The fire has been called as “tapped.” Lt. Sue Stangl spoke to us at the scene; she says they believe the fire started in the house to the south, spread apparently via utility wire(s) to the one next door. (Added – video of her briefing)

If two houses are on fire, it’s an automatic 2-alarm, she explained; fast response also got this under control fairly fast, though they’re still assessing to see if the residents – all of whom got out OK – can go back inside.

ADDED FRIDAY MORNING: As noted in comments, SFD has posted an update on the fire’s cause and extent of damage:

Fire damage to the original house was too substantial to reoccupy. The neighboring house’s damage was limited to the exterior but due to air quality inside, the occupants were rehoused temporarily.

Fire investigators determined that discarded smoking materials on the back porch started the fire. The cumulative loss to both houses is estimated to be $300,000.

CLOSURE ALERT: Hiawatha Community Center, starting Saturday

Seattle Parks wants to be sure you know that Hiawatha Community Center has a week-plus closure ahead: Saturday (February 17th) through Sunday, February 25th, Hiawatha is scheduled to shut down so its floors can be refinished. (Note that ALL city-run community centers, and many other Parks facilities, will be closed Monday for Presidents Day – full list here.)

WEST SEATTLE CRIME WATCH: Stolen double stroller

7:41 PM: If you find an abandoned City Mini Double stroller somewhere … it just might be the one those little West Seattleites were photographed in. Claire says it was taken from the trunk of their locked car. (We have asked a followup question about where it happened, and will add that info when we get it.)

ADDED EARLY FRIDAY: Claire says they’re in the Fairmount Park area.

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