West Seattle, Washington
11:47 PM: Police have confirmed reports of gunfire in Highland Park.
It happened in the parking lot at the 16th and Holden 7-11, where, according to scanner traffic, at least one shell casing has turned up, and officers are looking for others. No reports of injuries or property damage, so far.
12:10 AM: Still just one casing found as of our stop at the scene a few minutes ago. The search is focusing on the east side of the store, along 16th.
They’re still sorting out the circumstances. Photos added.
Two more playoff games tonight for local high-school basketball teams:
SEATTLE LUTHERAN GIRLS VS. TULALIP HERITAGE: This game ended with a loss for the Saints, 48-37, in Mount Vernon. The SLHS girls’ next game will be at 6 pm Thursday vs. Neah Bay, at Evergreen Lutheran in Tacoma.
WEST SEATTLE BOYS VS. BELLEVUE: This was a rollercoaster game for the Wildcats, eventually losing 64-57. They went into the locker room down 36-10 at the half but rallied to a one point lead early in the fourth quarter, leading to raucous cheers from the bench:
The defense toughened up in the second half, too, as head coach Keffrey Fazio‘s boys kept battling:
#22 Yusuf Mohamed was the scoring leader with 14, followed by #4 Chaaka Trahan with 11.
The next game is a must-win – 3 pm Friday vs. Rainier Beach, again at Bellevue College.
Back on February 6th, we brought you the story of West Seattleite Marcia Lyons and her Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever, Liberty, getting ready to head to the legendary Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show and the Masters Agility Championship preceding it. We noticed in today’s results that Liberty had received “select” honors in her breed category. So we e-mailed Marcia to ask for an update:
It has been an amazing but incredibly busy time in New York. Here’s a recap of the last couple days and Libby’s exploits at Westminster.
I am crazy proud of my little Liberty and her performance this weekend at Westminster. On Saturday she ran in the Masters Agility Championship. She ran well enough in the two daytime runs to make it into the top 10 of her height class (16″) which meant she made it into the final Championship that night. It was quite the spectacle, as it was televised nationally on Fox Sports. I was also one of the few selected to wear a special wireless microphone as I ran so they could hear everything I was saying to Libby as we ran. In the final round she ran beautifully and one of the fastest times of the evening, but unfortunately we made 2 errors that added time penalties so we didn’t win. But she was a winner in my book, the way she gave her all as she ran and held up through an incredibly crazy busy day.
To cap her agility success, today she displayed the beauty side of things to compliment her athletic achievements. In the dog show she went into the breed ring for Conformation, in the “Best of Breed” class. It was quite thrilling when the judge awarded her the “Select Female” prize, meaning she was his second highest pick out of the females. We are now heading home tired and happy with some lovely ribbons.
It was an amazing weekend for the little Toller from West Seattle.
We almost missed Liberty on the winners’ list because she was listed by her official name: CH Aqueus Let Freedom Ring CD BN RE AX AXJ OF CGC.
(CONTINUING TO UPDATE with additions – scroll down!)
ORIGINAL REPORT, 6:25 PM: Instead of a walkout – it’s a walk-in.
On Thursday morning, teachers, staffers, parents, and community members are gathering outside public schools for a “walk-in” – a show of support, rather than a protest.
Since schools start at different times, the walk-ins are happening at different times. We’ve heard from two schools so far. One is West Seattle High School – teacher Jennifer Hall tells us:
At West Seattle High School, we (staff members, parents, community members) will be gathering in front of the building on California Avenue at 7 AM, and then we will WALK IN together between 7:10 and 7:15. We will be serving coffee and donuts, and enjoying conversation about positive hopes and dreams for our school inside, and school will start on time.
We’ve also heard from Gatewood Elementary. From Jena Ingrahm with the PTA:
Supporters will gather in the playground at Gatewood before school starts at 8:15 and then walk in together. The school day starts on time.
Why do a walk in? We are gathering across the country as communities to assert that these are our schools and they must be fully funded. Too many decisions about public education are made outside our communities and without the voice of parents, their children and the educators who know the students best. By standing up together, in our communities and across the country, we send a strong message to policymakers and educational leaders that we all support fully funded and resourced public schools.
All you have to do is show up and wear red!
If your school participating? Please let us know so we can add the info – start time and gathering place – email@example.com – thanks!
ADDED 9:16 PM: Thanks to Angela Powell from the Alki Elementary PTA for sending word they’re participating too. This post on the PTA website has details; participants will gather outside the school at 8:20 am and walk in together.
ADDED 10:24 PM: Concord International in South Park also has a walk-in. Robin Schwartz from the Concord PTA says, “Wear red for ed(ucation), meet out front at 9 am to sign the poster board that will be delivered to Olympia, and walk in together!”
ADDED 7:08 AM WEDNESDAY: Schmitz Park Elementary also is participating, according to teacher Alison Aylesworth, who says the gathering time is 8:20 am: “Meet on the playground, write on the vision board and walk-in at 8:35! Wear red for ed!”
ADDED 10:55 AM WEDNESDAY – TWO MORE: Kayo adds in comments that “Pathfinder is also participating. Wear red and meet by the small playground at 8 am.”
And via e-mail, Sandra Gray tells us Fairmount Park Elementary will do it too – wear red and gather in front of the school along SW Findlay, 8-8:40 am. (UPDATE: They’ll gather along Fauntleroy instead.)
ADDED 3:09 PM WEDNESDAY – THREE MORE: From the Denny International Middle School newsletter:
“Before the Bell” Support for Schools Rally, 7:05 am, Denny Front Entrance
What’s your vision for our Public Schools? Join us “before the bell” on February 18 to stand together and celebrate our schools. Across the country from New York to Los Angeles and more than 20 cities in between, parents, students, teachers, educators and community leaders are gathering “before the bell” to stand together in support of great public schools. We’ll be meeting in the entrance courtyard at Denny as scholars arrive, from 7:05-7:35.
Via e-mail, Holly Briscoe from the Highland Park Elementary PTA says, “HPE will also be participating in the walk-in. We are encouraging families to wear red and to sign the vision board at drop off. Event begins at 8:30.”
And in comments, AJP says Louisa Boren STEM K-8 is in, too – 9 am to 9:30 am.
4:26 PM: We’re in the gym at Bellevue College, where the West Seattle High School girls have just made it into the district-playoff quarterfinals with a win over Juanita, 73-66. Top scorer: WSHS senior Lydia Giomi, with 32 points. The Wildcats’ next game will be at 3 pm Thursday, against the winner of tonight’s Lakeside-Bellevue game.
5:55 PM: We’re back at HQ now and adding photos.
The scoring was rounded out by #30 Lexi Ioane with 12, #21 Gabby Sarver with 10, #3 Izzy Turk with 8, #20 Grace Sarver with 6, and #10 Jenna McPhee with 5.
Head coach Darnell Taylor‘s Wildcats led by as many as 20 points during the course of the game, but Juanita kept battling back. At halftime, the Wildcats were up 38-28, and added 7 unanswered points at the start of the second half, with the 50-30 lead not long after that. Juanita then scrapped its way to within five points, 52-47, but WSHS kept fighting and took the win.
When the West Seattle Block Watch Captains Network met three weeks ago, police staffing turned to be the hottest topic of the meeting. Southwest Precinct commander Capt. Pierre Davis said he’d like to have more officers, but hiring citywide wasn’t going very quickly.
Maybe it will now – in his State of the City speech this afternoon, Mayor Ed Murray doubled his promise of new officers to be hired before his first term is up – saying he’ll now commit to hiring 200 more officers, above and beyond ongoing attrition.
Acknowledging that while violent crime in Seattle is low, property crime is not, he said SPD is forming a “dedicated team” working on reducing it.
He announced a Commercial Affordability Advisory Committee to, as the news release about his speech describes it, “identify issues that lead to displacement of small businesses in growing Urban Villages and recommend actions that support affordable commercial spaces.”
He spoke of renewed commitment for transportation projects including Sound Transit light rail to West Seattle and the Lander Street overpass in SODO, which was named in the Move Seattle levy. And he said the Vision Zero safety campaign – which has cut speed limits and rechannelized streets, including parts of 35th and Roxbury in West Seattle – is working, with traffic deaths down 25 percent, at an all-time low.
Read more highlights here.
(WSB photo from 2015 sale)
It’s a sale – it’s a benefit – and it’s earlier this year – March instead of April:
The West Seattle Co-op Preschool system is very excited to be hosting another kids’ consignment sale on March 5 from 9 – 1 p.m. at the West Seattle VFW Hall to help fund scholarships for families in need.
Anyone from the community can consign at this sale. Consigners can set their own prices, and guidance and information about how to register to be a consigner are available online.
This sale will be a great way for families to make some money with their gently used baby/kids gear, spring/summer clothing, toys, and books. Sellers will make 65 percent of the asking price and the preschool scholarship fund will retain 35 percent. The consigners will be paid for the sold items via a check, which will be mailed the week following the sale.
Anyone is welcome to shop for low cost, good quality items for their kids the day of the sale. All proceeds from the sale benefit the coop scholarship program to help families in need.
The sale page will have sneak peeks as the event gets closer.
We mentioned this briefly in coverage of last week’s Fauntleroy Community Association meeting, and today we have full details as Seattle Public Utilities is sending notice to neighbors of its next pump-station project, which will affect Fauntleroy ferry-dock users too, and drivers who use the electric-vehicle-charging stations at the dock.
Next month, SPU will start what could be up to four months of work at its pump station on the south side of the ferry dock:
It’s replacing “a sewer mainline through an underground horizontal drilling operation located along the pedestrian pathway and vehicle-lane area” as well as removing and replacing “mechanical and electrical pump-station components.” It’s a ~$400,000 project, according to online documents from the bidding process.
The project will close the King County Metro-managed parking lot on the southeast side of the dock, which means the five electric-vehicle charging stations in that lot, among the few publicly available in West Seattle, will be unavailable during the project. SPU says they are usually available to the public Mondays-Fridays, 7 am-3 pm. The vehicles that usually use the parking lot, vanpool vans, “will be relocated to designated street parking on Fauntleroy Way SW and SW Wildwood Place,” according to the SPU notice. The southbound bus stop by the lot is to remain open.
The ultimate goal of the upgrade, according to SPU, is to reduce sewer overflows into Puget Sound. We’ve asked a followup question about how many overflows this station, officially known as Pump Station 70, has had. This is a city project/facility, and so it’s separate from the county-owned Barton Pump Station on the other side of the dock, which just finished a multi-year upgrade project last year, and the county’s Murray Pump Station north of nearby Lincoln Park, which is getting upgrades while the combined-sewer-overflow-control facility is built across the street from Lowman Beach.
(1st & last photos, by WSB: This one’s from SW Yancy; look closely and you’ll see ‘Bethlehem,’ the plant’s 1930-1985 owner)
We called the plant to find out why; here’s what environmental manager Pat Jablonski told us:
The water tower hadn’t been used in decades. It’s being decommissioned and removed as part of construction/renovation work for a two-story office building at the plant. They’re not sure exactly how old it was but believe it dates back to the 1920s-1930s (the plant itself is more than a century old), built to hold an emergency water supply “before this part of Seattle had a reliable water system,” Jablonski explained.
Perhaps the tower’s most noticeable feature, catching eyes in the holiday season, has been its illuminated star (featured here in 2007). Jablonski says they’re keeping it, “upgrading it to LEDs,” and relocating it somewhere else at the plant, though they haven’t decided where yet.
As for the steel that comprises most of the tower – yes, it’ll be recycled at Nucor.
(Photo by Don Brubeck)
From the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar:
BABY STORY TIME: Seattle Public Library branches are back open today after the holiday and people with babies up to 1 year old are invited to bring them to the Southwest Library for story time, 10:30-11 am. (35th SW/SW Henderson)
WEST SEATTLE CRIME PREVENTION COUNCIL: 7 pm at the Southwest Precinct, hear from SPD about current crime trends, and take advantage of a chance to ask police about your neighborhood concerns. Tonight’s guest speaker is from Alert Seattle, the city’s new-ish emergency-alert program. (2300 SW Webster)
TONIGHT’S TRIVIA: 8 pm at Parliament Tavern. (4210 SW Admiral Way)
WEST SEATTLE YMCA SWIM LESSON SIGNUPS … start today for the next session, as previewed here on Monday. Family memberships now include free parent/child swim lessons. (4515 36th SW)
(Click any view for a close-up; more cameras on the WSB Traffic page)
6:33 AM: We start with Viaduct trouble – a reported car fire has closed northbound 99 at the Battery Street Tunnel.
6:40 AM: Whatever it was, it was short-lived – a WSB tipster confirms what SDOT has just tweeted, that the tunnel is already back open.
6:44 AM: One reminder for today – it’s the second and final day of Seattle Public Schools‘ abbreviated mid-winter break.