West Seattle, Washington
(Photo republished with permission)
Sanislo Elementary librarian Craig Seasholes is excited about a big gift for the young readers with whom he works – those boxes are part of a donation of nonfiction books worth $6,000! They’re courtesy of the Seattle Public Library/Paul G. Allen Family Foundation collaboration and Sanislo parents are invited to stop in the library during conference week next week for a closer look. Find out more on this Sanislo webpage.
(Photo courtesy Carrie Akre)
By Keri DeTore
Reporting for West Seattle Blog
If you don’t quite recognize her name, you probably know of the Seattle-based bands she led: Hammerbox, Goodness, or the Rockfords, and you would definitely recognize her voice; soulful and bluesy, but clear as a sunny winter’s day on Puget Sound.
After a break from the music scene and from the West Coast, Carrie returned to West Seattle this year. We sat down with her at the Admiral Bird to discuss the past few years, and what the future holds, professionally, musically, and personally.
Besides writing, playing and singing in bands Akre wrote and produced solo albums including “Invitation” in 2002 and “…Last the Evening” in 2007, efforts that she says left her “burnt crispy” from exhaustion.
Not long after we took that photo last week, excavation concluded at the site of the Murray Combined Sewer Overflow Project‘s future million-gallon tank. After a reader mentioned seeing a big excavator on a truck heading eastbound, we checked the project’s status today with Doug Marsano from King County Wastewater Treatment. He confirmed the conclusion of the 60-foot-deep excavation, which started two months ago, and said the next big job will be a three-day concrete pour for the 17-foot base on which the tank will rest – no dates set yet, but they hope to get it done before Thanksgiving. It’ll mean:
About 20 trucks an hour will deliver concrete to the site to pour the base. Two concrete pump trucks will be located on the east side of Beach Drive SW to pump the concrete into the hole. Trucks will enter the site from Lincoln Park Way SW and exit using 48th Ave SW. Trucks waiting to pour will park on Fauntleroy Way SW and Lincoln Park Way SW. Flaggers will direct traffic around the site. To maintain local vehicle access, no parking will be available from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. on the 7000 block of Beach Dr. S.W. and on Lincoln Park Way from Murray Ave. to Beach Dr. on pour days.
That’s from the official construction update, which you can see here. In case you missed it in our early excavation coverage, here’s how much dirt was removed and where it went.
It’s been a long journey for The Kenney (WSB sponsor) over the past six years, including starting and canceling a major overhaul plan. Today, a big announcement – The Kenney is affiliating with New York-based Heritage Ministries and reducing its debt. Here’s the announcement:
The Kenney senior living community of West Seattle has signed a letter of intent to affiliate with Heritage Ministries, a nonprofit, faith-based organization. Through this planned affiliation, The Kenney has also signed a purchase agreement with its current lender to purchase its outstanding debt at a 50% discount.
Heritage Ministries has roots in the Free Methodist Church with sister organizations, such as Seattle Pacific University, in the Seattle area. Heritage Ministries and The Kenney intend to affiliate and to maintain the mission of serving seniors in West Seattle. The Kenney will remain a nonprofit organization and will continue to have a board of volunteer directors. Resident agreements will be honored and the benevolent care fund for residents will continue.
The level of debt incurred by The Kenney was the result of construction of a new assisted living and community space in the 2000s. The construction and loans had occurred prior to the economic downturn and current operations could not sustain that level of debt. The Kenney worked with its lender, Sovereign Bank, for several years to maintain operations and to continue to service the needs of The Kenney’s residents. Ontrac Management Services was brought in to work with The Kenney in summer 2012 after the organization had defaulted on its loan.
In Spring 2014, Sovereign Bank sold The Kenney’s loan to a private lender who agreed to honor the resident contracts and allowed the organization to continue its nonprofit status. In October 2014, the same lender notified The Kenney that it needed to sell the debt before the end of the year. Ontrac Management Services was asked by The Kenney board of directors to find a lender and/or other nonprofit organization to assist with the debt purchase.
With the affiliation plan for Heritage Ministries and The Kenney moving ahead, Ontrac Management will step out of its interim role in December. Larry Foss is being named Executive Director of The Kenney. Mr. Foss joined The Kenney in the finance department and as the licensed nursing home administrator in June 2014. He has more than a decade of experience working in senior living communities as a chief financial officer, executive director and as a nursing home administrator. Mr. Foss is also the current Chair of LeadingAge Washington, which is the nonprofit trade association for senior living and healthcare organizations.
“It has been a privilege to support The Kenney as interim management during the last two years. Our role is now coming to an end. We see that the future is bright for The Kenney in its affiliation with Heritage Ministries,” said Moraine Byrne, President of Ontrac Management Services.
In an October news release, The Kenney said the 50 percent debt reduction would bring its debt down to $10.5 million. It pursued a $150 million redevelopment project between 2008 to 2011, in the end settling on smaller changes such as creation of a Memory Unit. We asked Byrne for a little more elaboration on what “affiliation” means; she replied, “The Kenney will continue to be a 501(c)3 charitable organization. Affiliation means that the corporate member in the bylaws is Heritage Ministries and that The Kenney will continue to be governed by a volunteer board of directors. Heritage Ministries will provide management oversight too.”
That’s a recent photo of the King County Sheriff’s Office helicopter Guardian One; today, KCSO sends an alert that you might spot it flying along the West Seattle coastline next Tuesday, and that’ll be part of a drill:
Notice of Joint Maritime Training Exercise
On Tuesday November 25th the King County Sheriff’s Office TAC 30 team (our department’s tactical unit) will be hosting a multi-agency maritime operations exercise in the area of the Des Moines waterfront. Citizens may see our helicopter flying from the Alki Point area south to Dumas Bay. Hours of the exercise will be from approximately 8 AM until 5 PM.
The main landing zone for the helicopter will be the Des Moines Marina. Agencies participating in the exercise include the Washington State Patrol, Seattle Police, Bainbridge Island Police, the U.S. Coast Guard, Customs and Border Protection and King County Medic One.
There will be numerous law enforcement boats involved in the exercise, along with one boat from Argosy Cruises. The main landing zone for the helicopter will be the Des Moines Marina. During the exercise there will be no public access to the pier.
We’ll remind you again when it gets closer, but for now, just so you know; the law-enforcement boats might be noticed as they head that way, too.
1:40 PM: Following up on the incident that first came to light as an alert sent by e-mail and robo-call to Arbor Heights Elementary parents late yesterday, reported here last night along with additional information we sought from police last night, here’s what SPD Blotter has just published:
Detectives are investigating a possible luring incident Monday in West Seattle.
A 12-year-old boy was walking to school around 9 AM when a black Ford pickup truck pulled alongside him in the 1600 block of 23rd Ave SW. The driver in the truck then spoke to the boy, who kept walking. The truck then sped away.
The boy’s father was driving just ahead of the boy—to keep an eye on him as he walked to school—and witnessed the brief encounter. After seeing the truck drive off, the father picked up his son, who reported the man has asked him to help with an errand.
The boy’s father then drove through the neighborhood and caught up to the truck, and jotted down the license plate number. The father then dropped his child off at school and contacted police about the incident.
Officers went to the home where the they believed the truck’s driver was living, but residents at the house said he had not been there in more than a month.
Detectives in SPD’s Sexual Assault Unit are investigating and have identified a level-one sex offender—who is connected with the truck—as a person of interest in the case.
ADDED 3:06 PM: And now Seattle Public Schools has sent the following message to “West Seattle school families” (thanks to the Arbor Heights parent who was first to forward it to us:
Dear West Seattle schools families,
I want to share with you information on a recent event that was reported in our community. Earlier this week, Seattle Police received information regarding a male stranger driving up to a Denny International Middle School youth as he walked to school, asking him to get in the vehicle. The student refused and fled. The student’s parent was nearby and called Seattle Police with the stranger’s vehicle description and license number. That same afternoon, the parent reported to Seattle Police that the same stranger and vehicle were outside Denny after school, though there was no report to police or school administration that any students were approached by the man. Seattle Police have investigated and determined the owner of the vehicle is listed as a registered sex offender.
The Denny student did everything right, immediately getting away from the stranger and reporting the incident to his parent, and the parent was very proactive gathering vehicle information and license number.
The safety of our students is a top priority for Seattle Public Schools. You can help your children stay safe by talking to them about personal safety. As a reminder, please talk to your child(ren) about walking in pairs or groups and being aware of their surroundings at all times, as well as not talking to strangers or getting into their vehicles. Having these conversations, especially with younger children, can be difficult. We encourage you to be sensitive to your child. This link to the Seattle Police website offers some valuable information which may help you with your discussions: http://www.seattle.gov/police/prevention/child/default.htm
Seattle Public Schools
THURSDAY UPDATE: Police added a few lines to the blotter post, saying they have found and talked to the man:
SPD detectives have contacted and interviewed the person of interest in this case. The man was very forthcoming with information about the incident. Investigators are currently checking out details he provided to rule out any criminal activity on his part.
As of noon, a Stage 2 burn ban is in effect in King County, and the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency expects to keep it in effect until 6 am tomorrow. It cites “continued weather conditions and air-pollution levels. Here’s what this level of burn ban means:
During a Stage 2 burn ban:
* No burning is allowed in any wood-burning fireplaces, certified or uncertified wood stoves or fireplace inserts. Residents should rely instead on their home’s other, cleaner source of heat (such as their furnace or electric baseboard heaters) for a few days until air quality improves, the public health risk diminishes and the ban is cancelled.
* The only exception is if the homeowner has a previously approved ‘No Other Adequate Source of Heat’ designation from the Clean Air Agency
* No outdoor fires are allowed. This includes recreational fires such as bonfires, campfires and the use of fire pits and chimineas.
* Burn ban violations are subject to a $1,000 penalty.
It is OK to use natural gas and propane stoves or inserts during a Stage 2 burn ban.
Rain is expected to return early tomorrow.
(Remember the sunshine? Winter beach volleyball photographed last weekend by Don Brubeck)
Not far from that sandy scene, we start today’s list of highlights from the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar:
MARINATION’S ‘FREE TACO’ FOOD DRIVE: Bring a nonperishable food item to Marination ma kai (WSB sponsor) at Seacrest today for the Food Lifeline drive, and you’ll get a free taco, as previewed here. MMK is open now, and doesn’t close until 8 pm. The food drive continues beyond today, but this is the ONE day for this tasty incentive. (1660 Harbor SW)
AFFORDABLE, LIVABLE HOUSING IN SEATTLE: How do you think the city can help make sure there IS some, maybe even more? Your chance to have a say and get involved is tonight – not IN West Seattle, but it’s as close as this round of meetings will get – 6 to 8:30 pm at the Ethiopian Community Center. Lots of details here. (8323 Rainier Ave. S. – map)
DELRIDGE NEIGHBORHOODS DISTRICT COUNCIL: 7 pm at Youngstown Cultural Arts Center, with the agenda including guest Israel Vela, executive director of Southwest-region schools for Seattle Public Schools, and a followup discussion on the proposed Neighborhood Matching Fund changes. (4408 Delridge Way SW)
WORDS WEST LITERARY SERIES: 7 pm at C & P Coffee Company (WSB sponsor), featuring Kate Lebo and Molly Wizenberg, with Delridge Grocery reading the “favorite poem.” Details in our calendar listing. (5612 California SW)
LAUGH IT OFF: Midweek and you need a reason to laugh. You’ll find many reasons tonight at Feedback Lounge (WSB sponsor), with West Seattle’s own Mona Concepcion hosting Comedy Night featuring Mitch Burrow, Evelyn Jensen, Matt Eriksen, Mike Coletta, Nick Decktor, 8 pm. (6451 California SW)
MORE … on the calendar!
This Friday afternoon at Forest Lawn, family and friends will gather to say goodbye to Don Knodel. Here’s the remembrance they’re sharing with the community:
In Loving Memory of Don Knodel
It is with great sadness that on 11/11/14 our father, grandfather, great grandfather, uncle, and friend, passed away. He was the anchor of the Knodel family and will be missed.
Donald Clayton Knodel was born in Chasely, ND and raised in Hurdsfield, ND. He was one of 8 children and lived there until he joined the Navy, where he served in World War II on the USS Howard W. Gilmore. He came home and married Audrey Jean Kelm, his wife of 64 years. Together they took a leap of faith and with their two young children moved from ND, to West Seattle where they lived out the rest of their lives.
Don owned and operated Don’s Barber Shop on California Ave. for 45 years. He was an avid sportsman his whole life, playing baseball and basketball in school, then in the men’s league in ND. Moving to WS he became a regular bowler at the W.S. Bowl, poker player, and was involved with W.S. Little League Baseball as a coach and umpire. He and Audrey were Totems hockey season ticket holders and original Seahawks season ticket holders. Fishing was his true passion with trips to Canada and up at Timberlakes. Don loved having family and friends around him, whether it was playing cards, dancing or just sitting around telling stories and laughing. Lots of laughing….
Preceded in death by his wife Audrey; 3 brothers – Durward, Al, Andy; 2 sisters – Doris and Joyce. He is survived by his children Dwight (Nik), Kath (Kelly), Pam (Tom); grandchildren Erin, Damon, Tyler, Ian, Kaley; 6 great-grandchildren; 2 sisters Opal, Irene; and countless friends and family who will miss, but never forget, him.
Service: 11/21/2014, 2 pm, Forest Lawn Funeral Home (6701 30th SW). Please join us in the celebration of his life at the Knodel residence following the service (4122 41st SW). If you wish, donations to the Alzheimer’s Foundation would be greatly appreciated.
(WSB publishes obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available, to firstname.lastname@example.org)
Another chance to support a West Seattle school is two days away. From the Roxhill Elementary PTSA:
This Friday, November 21st, the West Seattle (and beyond!) Community has an opportunity to support Roxhill Elementary School.
From Open to Close (as well as online), a percentage of purchases made at Barnes and Noble will go towards the school.
Mr. Robert – along with Teachers and Parents – will be live-reading in the Children’s section [at the Westwood Village store] from 5 pm – 8 pm. Put on your pajamas and join us! Thank you so much!
The voucher number to use that day (in person or online) is on this PDF – 11509577.
(WS high/low bridges and Highway 99 views; more cams on the WSB Traffic page)
6:59 AM: Again today, the early commute’s proceeding without problems.
7:57 AM: If you happen to be heading *back* this way on SOUTHBOUND 99 from north of downtown, that’s a mess for two reasons, a lane closure near Mercer and a car fire at Aurora/59th.
8:15 AM: Update, as pointed out in comments – the lane closure near Mercer is actually one lane in each direction on 99 at that point. It’s for an emergency sewer repair. Here’s the advisory published by Seattle Public Utilities – round-the-clock from yesterday morning through Friday.
8:49 AM: A bit of backup at northbound I-5 from the bridge because of a crash – the vehicle(s) involved have been moved to the shoulder/gore point.
10:14 AM: Texter reports a “crash/disabled vehicle on eastbound West Seattle Bridge right before gore point” and says traffic’s backing up.
(WSB photo by Patrick Sand)
Culinary students at South Seattle College (WSB sponsor) were working on this gingerbread house well into Tuesday evening – after having already put more than 100 hours of work into it – with instructors including Christopher Harris (left). This morning, college spokesperson Kevin Maloney says, it’s scheduled to be picked up for delivery to Costco‘s corporate offices, where it will be on display in the travel area.
ADDED: Here’s the SSC report with full details on the gingerbread project.