West Seattle, Washington
In West Seattle Crime Watch tonight:
PACKAGE-THEFT ATTEMPT: From Jim:
We found a package half opened in our front yard today… looks like someone grabbed it from our porch and, when it turned out to be very light in spite of its large-ish size, half opened it and saw there was just a hat inside and dropped it… We’re on 20th SW just south of Barton. I think we got lucky, but wondered if anyone else might have been hit through here today.
SUSPICIOUS PERSON: From a Beach Drive resident:
I wanted to alert my neighbors in the Beach Drive/Seaview area about a man who has been casing my property multiple times this week; one time we noted him driving a 2010ish silver Toyota sedan. We activated our security camera and (Sunday) we caught him and a woman on camera walking around our front yard. We are hoping someone may recognize them and contact the police with additional information. This is our incident number with the SPD, 2017-132766.
TWO CHANCES TO TALK WITH POLICE: If you have questions or concerns – this week brings two public events where you can talk with local police. Tomorrow (Tuesday) night, 7 pm, at the Southwest Precinct (2300 SW Webster), it’s the monthly West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meeting, including a guest who’ll talk about the SPD Safe Place program and Metropolitan Police Museum. Then Wednesday at 1 pm, it’s the first West Seattle Coffee with a Cop, at Starbucks in The Junction (California/Alaska).
6:33 PM: That’s the Seattle City Light map showing the extent of a power outage that started shortly after 6 pm in Brace Point and part of The Arroyos. SCL says 327 customers – homes/businesses – are affected, but no word yet on the outage’s cause. The estimated restoration time is ~9:28 pm but remember that’s just a guess – could be sooner, could be later. (Thanks for the tips, and let us know when the power’s back – 206-293-6302 text or voice – thanks!)
7:18 PM: About half those who originally lost power have it back – 159 are still out, per the map, which now attributes the outage to “equipment failure.”
12:11 AM: The map still shows those customers out after 6 hours, with the restoration estimate now moved back past 2 am. We’ll be asking City Light later today for more information on what failed.
5:30 AM: Around 3 am, the outage area on the SCL map reverted to the original 327 customers. There’s now a restoration estimate of ~8:26 am.
9:23 AM: Just talked to Tyson Lin of SCL. He says the problem is in an underground vault and it’s taking a long time because crews first had to be able to get into the vaults safely – which involved, among other things, pumping out water with vacuum trucks – and then had to test each cable individually to figure out where the problem is. They’re still in the testing phase, Lin says, which they hope to finish by 11 am, and then restoration and repair, assuming they are able to find the specific problem, could take until 3 pm. We also asked why the additional customers lost power again at 3 am; that was because a particular cable had to be deactivated so they could safely reach others for testing.
11:21 AM: Just checked the SCL map for the first time in about an hour and a half and it shows the outage has ended – if your power isn’t back, be sure to call 206-684-3000 to make sure they know.
Going to run/walk the 5K at Loop the ‘Lupe on June 4th? Get ready with a free “couch to dash” training program announced by West Seattle Runner (WSB sponsor) – starting next week. From WSR’s Lori McConnell:
• A P3|Running RRCA Certified coach-led group run from West Seattle Runner on Wednesday evenings at 6:15 pm and Saturdays at 8 am. There will be a schedule for those who will use a run/walk program and one for those who are running the whole way
• Along with a 6-week training schedule, there will be a Running 101 clinic that will cover injury prevention, running form, shoes and gear 101, and mental training.
• April 24th-June 4th
• The Program starts from West Seattle Runner on Wednesday, April 26th. Meet your fellow participants and others from the Seattle running community!
This is a free program as part of our dedication to community service. All we ask is that you register or donate for Loop the ‘Lupe, as it supports programs that many benefit from on their quest to stay active.
Questions: Email email@example.com
To register for the training program: Email firstname.lastname@example.org
To find out more about custom coaching programs, go here.
West Seattle Runner is in The Admiral District at 2743 California SW. The June 4th Loop the ‘Lupe events are at Walt Hundley Playfield (34th SW/SW Myrtle).
So you’ve probably heard by now that former Mayor Mike McGinn wants that title again. He announced it this morning with this tweet:
— Mike McGinn (@mayormcginn) April 17, 2017
… and then invited reporters to his Greenwood home at midmorning to find out more. (We were on the list but couldn’t go. Pick your favorite citywide source for details.)
Though citywide media has focused on just a few candidates, even before McGinn’s announcement, nine campaigns were registered with the city Ethics and Elections Commission. They are, in alphabetical order, with links to campaign websites when we could find them, so you can learn a bit about who they are and what they want to do:
None listed a West Seattle address with the city, at least for the campaign. The two who don’t seem to have websites, Ishii and Martin, also ran in 2013; Ishii dropped out before the primary, in which Martin received 1.06% of the vote, far behind Murray with 30% and McGinn with 29% (in the 2013 general, Murray won with 52% to McGinn’s 47%).
While those listed above have registered their campaigns, the official candidacy-filing period is still four weeks away – to get onto the August 1st primary ballot, candidates will have to file with King County during the week of May 15 through 19. Top two vote-getters in the primary advance to the November 7th general.
“It’s hard to think of an accolade that he doesn’t have.” That’s what Susan Rich, one of the curators of the monthly WordsWest Literary Series presentations, says about National Book Award-winning poet Terrance Hayes, who will be featured at WW this Wednesday night. Hayes and Jane Wong, a former student of his who also is an award-winning poet, headline “A National Poetry Month Celebration” at C & P Coffee Company (5612 California SW; WSB sponsor), 7 pm Wednesday (April 19th). The WW announcement (see it in full here) says they will “read their work as a ‘living anthology’ — a distinctive WordsWest reading format that weaves the ideas and images of each poet’s work into a never-to-be-duplicated collaboration of echoes and connections. No admission charge (you can support the volunteer-run series here) – so get there early enough to ensure yourself a seat!
(WSB photo, November 2016: TEALS founder Kevin Wang and U.S. Sen. Patty Murray at left, visiting CSIHS)
The Technology Education And Literacy in Schools (TEALS) program at Chief Sealth International High School – which got a high-profile visit last fall (photo above) – is looking for volunteers to help next year. From Sealth principal Aida Fraser-Hammer:
Chief Sealth International High School is extremely excited to announce that we are entering our 3rd year of partnership with the TEALS program, which provides support to students who want to explore computer science in the classroom.
We are now planning for the 2017 – 2018 school year and as in years past, we are reaching out to the West Seattle community in search of software programmers or engineers willing to share their programming skills with our students. Volunteers are needed in the classroom as team-teachers 2 days per week for the next school year. No teaching experience is necessary; all training and additional supports will be provided by the TEALS program.
TEALS volunteers have enjoyed a successful partnership with Sealth by exposing students to challenging coursework which has been extremely successful in getting students hooked into computer programming and interested in pursuing higher education in the field of computer science. Volunteer training is provided during the summer and involvement in the classroom varies. Volunteers can team-teach or simply help out in the Computer Science classroom. They commit to two days per week during the 1st period of the day which allows them to maintain their regular work schedule.
Past volunteers have provided classroom support to students and have enjoyed helping teach CS in the classroom. Others have actually used the opportunity as a testing ground to explore a career in teaching. In fact, two-year Sealth volunteer Jon Fincher saw TEALS “as a chance to explore my interest in a more formal teaching role. It wasn’t long before I was fully stuck in. Within a few months, I knew teaching was going to be my post-tech career. I went back to school to get my CTE credentials to follow my passion.”
Although only a few TEALS volunteers explore teaching as a second career, all report, as Fincher does, “When I see a student ‘get it’, and see them take what they learned and do something I never thought of, I get as much satisfaction as they do.”
Sealth students started exploring Python 2nd semester this year, and although Python mastery is absolutely not a requirement for volunteers we would be particularly excited if any Python pros would like to help us for next year.
Interested CS professionals are encouraged to explore more at the volunteer section of the TEALS website or contact Sealth teacher John Wright (206-252-8550) for more information.
As family and friends remember Merrilee Hagen, this obituary provided by the Southwest Seattle Historical Society explains her legacy for the entire community:
The longtime West Seattle resident who sparked acquisition of the Southwest Seattle Historical Society’s “Birthplace of Seattle” Log House Museum on Alki has died.
Merrilee Ann Blackinton Hagen, a former board president of the historical society, a longtime real-estate broker and a prolific painter of local scenes, had been recovering from lymphoma when she died of a massive stroke on Sunday, April 9, 2017, in her home across from her alma mater, West Seattle High School. She was 73.
“Merrilee is one of the giants in our organizational history,” said Clay Eals, executive director of the historical society. “The impact of Merrilee on our organization was wide-ranging, but easily her most enduring contribution was her vision and action to acquire our museum.”
Merrilee served as board president in 1994 and 1995 when the organization was meeting and storing items at then-South Seattle Community College and was looking for a permanent headquarters of its own.
As a broker who “knew West Seattle like the back of her hand,” Eals said, she learned that the 1904 log home at 3003 61st Ave. SW was for sale and might be razed or moved. The building, one of the last three log structures on Alki, originally served as the carriage house for the nearby Fir Lodge, which became the Alki Homestead restaurant.
On behalf of the historical society, Merrilee immediately began to organize a campaign to purchase the building by securing a portion of mitigation funds offered by Metro as part of a West Seattle sewage-pipeline project. Volunteers worked the phones from her real-estate office, calling residents of Alki and Beach Drive, encouraging them to vote for the acquisition, which would be the first step in restoring and opening the building as a community-history museum.
The campaign was successful, and after extensive fundraising and exhibit preparation by Merrilee and other volunteers, the museum opened on Nov. 13, 1997, the 146th anniversary of the arrival of the Alki Landing Party. The museum will mark its 20th anniversary this fall.
Merrilee tells the museum acquisition story in this four-minute video from the Nov. 14, 2015, annual meeting of the historical society held at High Point Library:
In recent years, Merrilee regularly attended the historical society’s Champagne Gala Brunch and contributed her unique paintings of the Alki Lighthouse, the Alki Homestead and other icons as auction items. Her painting of the Historic Admiral Theater was part of an auction package at the 2016 Gala last Nov. 5 and was presented to the winners, Maryanne Tagney and David Jones, at the grand-reopening celebration of the theater one month ago on March 22.
A one-eighth member of the Samish Indian Nation, Merrilee was born to Chester and Shirley Blackinton on July 15, 1943, in Bellingham, the second child of four. She lived on Orcas Island until age 4, when her family moved to downtown Seattle then, one year later, to a West Seattle beach house at 59th Avenue Southwest and Southwest Carroll Street, across from the original one-room Alki schoolhouse.
She attended Alki Elementary School, and as a third-grader one of her highlights was attending the 1951 ceremonial celebration of the Alki pioneer landing. (In later years, she delighted in discovering her signature in the guest book at the Alki Lighthouse from when her Girl Scout troop visited there in 1953.)
After attending then-Madison Junior High School, she graduated from West Seattle High in 1961. In high-school years, she served as a “candy striper” volunteer, operating elevators at Seattle Hospital.
She briefly studied commercial art at Edison Art College downtown. In 1963 at age 19, she married Oscar Hagen Jr., a Navy veteran and Boeing office and computer worker, and they lived in the north Admiral and Seaview neighborhoods.
Merrilee gave birth to their only child, Melissa, in 1969, and her family welcomed long-term stays from relatives and friends in subsequent homes in the Highland Park and Arbor Heights neighborhoods.
After working briefly in the shipping department at Sears downtown, Merrilee was a full-time mom, busying herself with projects such as canning garden produce and painting the faces of Raggedy Ann dolls made by her grandmother.
Merrilee and Oscar divorced in 1982, and she moved to Marguerite Court on Alki. With her moves, she had developed an interest in real estate, starting a career in 1977 as a broker for Evan Carlson Realty on California Avenue and opening a realty business with Karis Malagon near 35th Avenue and SW Alaska Street.
She further developed interests in gardening and painting while transitioning to work for high-school classmate and West Seattle broker Rich Bianchi in the Junction and later for John L. Scott and moving to a succession of homes south of the Junction, in Burien, on Beach Drive, across from Lincoln Park, behind the Admiral Theater, and to a home west of the Junction to care for her mother.
Her watercolor, oil, and acrylic paintings filled every wall of her homes and hung in her real-estate offices, and her coordination of home tours for the historical society in the 1990s and early 2000s prompted her to create themed poster paintings for those events.
Merrilee retired as a broker in 2005 while battling Crohn’s disease. Following her mother’s death, she moved to lower Queen Anne and, two years ago, to the Island View apartment complex across from West Seattle High School.
Besides her devotion to West Seattle and the historical society, Merrilee was known for her keen memory and low-key sense of humor (one of her maxims was “Never pass up a good straight line”) and for staying in touch with and taking care of family and friends.
Survivors include her daughter and son-in-law, Melissa and Terry Cooper, of Highland Park; siblings Linda Blackinton, Daniel Blackinton, and Eileen Addison of Seattle; and ex-husband Oscar Hagen of SeaTac.
Her ashes will be scattered near the family home in the Guemes Channel north of Anacortes, and there will be no public memorial service. The Southwest Seattle Historical Society will host a time of remembrance for Merrilee during its annual Independence Day picnic from noon to 3 p.m. Tuesday, July 4, 2017, in the museum courtyard.
(WSB publishes West Seattle obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available, to email@example.com)
8:51 AM: A third drydock is in the works for Vigor‘s Harbor Island shipyard. The company announced this morning that it has “entered into an agreement to purchase a drydock from a Korean seller” and that it will be the largest drydock there, “640 feet long with a clear width of 116 feet.” Also from the news release announcing the plan:
“The purchase of another drydock in Seattle allows Vigor to better service valued customers like Washington State Ferries, the U.S. Coast Guard, and U.S. Navy,” notes Adam Beck, Vigor Executive Vice President of Ship Repair. “It also further strengthens our market position in commercial ship repair on the West Coast and supports our expansion into new markets.”…
Beck and his team had been actively looking for the right drydock at home and abroad for a number of months. The one selected happened to be in Korea. The team is working to finalize the transaction and have the dock operational in Seattle by late fall.
It’s been almost two years since Vigor moved a 528-foot drydock here from its Portland facilities, replacing one that had been decommissioned. We have asked a few followup questions and will add anything more we find out.
UPDATED 12:01 PM: While the timeline isn’t finalized yet, Vigor spokesperson Athena Maris tells WSB the new drydock is likely to arrive in November, under tow. In addition to the 528-foot Vigilant, mentioned above, the other existing drydock at Vigor – known just as #10 – is 552 feet.
6:57 AM: Good morning! No incidents in or from West Seattle so far this morning. Some notes:
SCHOOL UPDATE: Seattle Public Schools are back in session after spring-break week. But most parochial schools are off this week, and some secular independent schools too.
POTHOLE REPAIRS: Today’s the day the city promises to kick off “Pothole Palooza,” an “aggressive” intensified version of the ongoing-for-years tracking and repairing of road ruts.
If you see a traffic problem and are NOT driving, let us know via text or voice at 206-293-6302. If you are driving, let us know once you get where you’re going.
8:54 AM: If you travel through SODO … there’s an emergency response at 5th and Holgate right now, reported by SFD as a person hit by a train.