West Seattle, Washington
Three quick West Seattle biznotes:
STROLLER STRIDES EXPANDS: West Seattle Stroller Strides is adding a new location – Lincoln Park. The “grand opening” is next Monday, 9:30 am June 12th. Maryana from Stroller Strides’ parent biz Fit4Mom says, “It should be a fun event filled with a great workout, prizes, a diaper drive for WestSide Baby, and most important, a place where WS moms can connect with other WS moms.” Meet on the grass by the south parking lot (Fauntleroy/Cloverdale). Registration is requested – the link is on this page, with additional info.
DREAM DINNERS OPEN HOUSE: Tuesday night, two special sessions at Dream Dinners-West Seattle (4701 41st SW; WSB sponsor) offer you the chance at a deal – make three dinners for $34.99 (see the five options in our calendar listing). When we checked tonight, room remained in the 5 pm and 6:30 pm sessions – e-mail email@example.com, or call 206-938-5999 to RSVP.
NEW FOOD TRUCK: The 30th/Roxbury 76 station is now home to two food trucks. Besides Thai-U-Up at dinnertime most nights, the new food truck Burger Planet is there for lunch as of this past Sunday. We have a note out asking about their regular days/hours and will add whatever we find out.
Jerica says she knows it’s a long shot, but she’s hoping someone might have information about the hit-and-run crash that injured her dog a week and a half ago:
My dog was hit by a silver sports car on Alki Beach Thursday evening, May 25, in the area near the 2222 apartments [map]. The car didn’t stop and was speeding and passing the car in front of them into oncoming traffic, which was why they likely were unable to to brake in time to prevent hitting her. She’s a Great Dane and would have likely done some damage to the car.
Her dog did survive. If you have any information, contact police and refer to case #2017-200908.
9:31 PM: Don’t know yet what this was but we’ve received multiple reports, including the text that had the video attached, as seen from Alki Avenue SW. Help us sleuth it! We’ll add whatever we turn up.
9:57 PM: One commenter points to the possibility it was just a contrail. Haven’t found any meteor or rocket reports so that just might be it; still looking just in case.
11:10 PM: Our favorite expert skywatcher Alice Enevoldsen believes it’s a contrail. She writes:
tl;dr–In my expert opinion: contrail.
Longer answer: of course I don’t know for absolutely certain, who could possibly know that, besides the pilot? So let’s run through the main reasonable possibilities.
Space Junk Reentry
As mentioned by the viewers of the video (yay! thank you!) it could be space junk, right? You’re absolutely correct, there’s space junk burning up in our atmosphere all the time. That bright second half of the line sure looks like fire too. The speed is wrong though. Most reentries go a similar speed, since they’re stuff entering our atmosphere from orbit. Controlled reentries have a slightly different speed than uncontrolled ones, but they all tend to be a good bit faster than this is moving.
Here’s a gif of a satellite going about twice as fast as usual.
Again, the speed is wrong. Meteors go much faster, they’re also known as shooting stars. When your friend says “look! A shooting star!” by the time you look, it’s gone. The Chelyabinsk meteor seemed to go a bit slower, because it was huge (as average meteors go) and therefore got deeper into our atmosphere than most. Here’s a gif of a meteor, going about normal speed.
From our point of view looking at the sky on a given day, comets don’t move.
For something long, thin, and cloud-like the first direction to examine is a contrail. The speed of the object is correct for an airplane moving out of our field of view. Also, the direction works, because this “downward” path is consistent with a plane travelling west and eventually disappearing over the horizon. We still have some questions: why do we see it go so far down, and why is the contrail two colors: dark and “fire”?”
Both colors can be explained by the direction of travel and the time. This is around sunset. The end of the plane’s contrail is in the evening sky, in a position that is after sunset and therefore in the Earth’s shadow. The plane’s current position is in sunlight, but as it is sunset, the position is brightly lit with all the colors of the sunset. It is brighter than the clouds it appears near, because it is higher than them and therefore in brighter sunlight than them.
It is potentially possible that the lighting of this contrail makes it so we can see the plane and it’s contrail longer than usual, contributing to the “straight down” appearance of the trail. I’m not certain of that explanation for this part. It could also be as simple as observation bias: this one is so cool, we don’t remember other contrails going this direction.
P.S. Details soon on Alice’s summer-solstice sunset watch!
8:44 PM: Thanks for the texted tip – 53 homes are without power in Gatewood, the Seattle City Light map confirms. No word yet what caused the outage; the estimated restoration time is after 2 am, but remember that those times are “guesstimates” at best – could be sooner, or later. (Let us know if you see a repair truck – text or call 206-293-6302, our 24/7 hotline – thanks!)
10:30 PM: The map is now updated to attribute the outage to “bird/animal” – which is in line with the first comment below. No change in the restoration guesstimate, though.
5:39 AM: Power was restored early this morning – see comments.
Even more local success at the recent Seattle Public Schools district-wide Science and Engineering Fair! Today we received this report, with photos, about Louisa Boren STEM K-8 students’ achievements:
Middle School students from Louisa Boren STEM K-8 participated in the Seattle Public Schools Science and Engineering Fair at the Museum of Flight on June 1st. Of our seven entries in the competition, six were awarded prizes by judges. All four 7th-grade entries, representing our Career and Technical Education Program (CTE) took home awards. 6th Grade received two awards.
Their science teacher, Craig Parsley, had this to say about all Boren’s participants: “Science instruction has got to change with the times. These students represent the kind of innovative thinking and perseverance that we want to see in all students. I am proud of their work.”
Engineering Grade 7 (CTE Students)
Evalinn Kas – Best Data Analysis – Thermoelectric Generation – (Electricity from Automotive Tailpipe Waste-Heat)
Bree Hopkins – Best Aeronautical Engineering – Forward-Deployed Mars Lander Decelerator – (Forward-Mount Parabolic Decelerator)
Science Grade 7 (CTE Students)
Nyjel Sebastion – Most Original Science Project – Spin-ergy (Rotational Torque of Wind Turbines)
Kathryn Soria – Best Data Analysis – Trombe Wall vs. Water Wall (A Study of Heat Retention in Concrete vs. Water)
Engineering Grade 6
Lucca Castillo and Maurice Scott – Most Likely to be Patented – Infrared Black Ice Detector
Grade 6 Science
June Pierson and Esme Jablonsky – Judges Special Recognition – Do the Wave – (Modeling Wave Shape Changes in High Velocity Winds)
Also participating were Kai Perala and Connor Aikas, with their entry, Pneumatic Underwater Retrieval Drone.
(Seattle Channel video of this afternoon’s meeting, with public comment starting 14 minutes in, bill consideration 58 minutes in)
West Seattle/South Park City Councilmember Lisa Herbold was the only “no” vote this afternoon as the council passed the so-called “sugary beverages” tax – officially known as an ordinance “imposing a tax on engaging in the business of distributing sweetened beverages.” Herbold said she isn’t opposed to the concept of the tax but today she tried again to lower it and expand its scope – and again, like last Friday, she couldn’t get a majority of the rest of the council to go along with her. The tax was originally proposed by Mayor Ed Murray, who plans to sign it at a ceremony tomorrow morning. It won final approval 7-1 (Councilmember Kshama Sawant, who voted against it in committee last week along with Herbold, was absent).
THE DETAILS: According to council staff via Twitter, the bill would tax distributors at one and three-quarters cents per beverage ounce for those with $5 million+ income, one cent per beverage ounce for $2 million-$5 million income, those with income under $2 million exempt. But spokesperson Dana Robinson Slote says the full text of the bill “won’t be official until tomorrow morning, when all amendments are integrated by staff.”
We’ve been out trying to find out more about a police investigation on the slope between Myers Way and Highway 509, and we’ve just learned that they’re looking into a death. Seattle Fire was called earlier, and tells us the person who died is a 25-year-old man. SPD says it was originally reported as an overdose “in a wooded area” that’s known as an unauthorized encampment. But the man’s cause of death will be determined by the King County Medical Examiner’s Office. The SPD response on the shoulder of southbound Highway 509 – part of it is in our photo above – led to quite a slowdown for a while but some of the units have since left.
3:24 PM: Thanks to everyone who has texted about a problem on the bridge – we’ve finally tracked down some information and a camera turned on the situation, a truck blocking the eastbound bridge ramp to northbound I-5. It was “partly blocking” earlier but now the ramp is closed while they try to get the truck (which is described as having gotten in trouble because of a “shifted load”) out of there. If you’re headed northbound, we’d advise 99 instead until this is cleared.
4:19 PM: The ramp is now clear, per WSDOT (and the “live” camera image above).
Two notes from Chief Sealth International High School:
From athletic director Ernest Policarpio:
Congratulations to Evan Moe from Chief Sealth for being selected 1st team all-league in baseball two years in a row. He will be playing tomorrow in the All-Metro game tomorrow at 3:30PM at SWAC. Admission is free.
The Southwest Athletic Complex is across from Sealth, at 2801 SW Thistle.
Meantime, a texter sent us this photo of Coach Policarpio with another announcement:
The Sportsmanship Award is for Sealth athletes and coaches, we are told. Congratulations to all!
(WSB photo, January 2015)
Two and a half years ago, that was the view into the then-under-construction million-gallon combined-sewer-overflow-control tank at what’s now called the Murray “wet weather facility” across from Lowman Beach (named for Murray Avenue SW).
Today, that’s the view from atop the site – which we just toured with a delegation from the King County Wastewater Treatment Division, which runs the facility, where you’re invited to a community celebration next Saturday (June 10th, 10 am-noon). The $47 million facility has been operational since last November – when it handled an overflow situation; now the exterior’s complete, too, and it’s party time. This has been eight years in the making, dating back to community meetings in 2009 to talk about options for reducing combined-sewer (the system that takes both stormwater and sewage) overflows into Puget Sound in two areas of central/south West Seattle, part of a wide-ranging court order. The Murray project – which replaced a block of residential buildings – ultimately was designed to include viewpoint, seating space, and art atop and alongside its support building. What looks like lawn, for example, is actually part of a green roof.
You might already have seen the exterior – people were there on this sunny morning doing yoga and walking the stairs. The tank itself is off-limits but we got a look at what’s inside the support building:
ORIGINAL REPORT, 11:36 AM: Thanks to the texter who reports a humpback whale about 100 yards off the Fauntleroy ferry dock. We don’t know yet if it’s the same humpback reported in Elliott Bay on Sunday – Orca Network confirmed the ID on that one (BCX1251) and also is reporting this morning’s sighting.
ADDED 9 PM: Thanks to John Schuh for video of the humpback slapping its tail, repeatedly! Also note the comment below saying the whale – or, another humpback – was seen again tonight.
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
One month ago, King County Public Health went public with alarming news: A toddler somewhere in the county had become severely ill with a rare disease linked to parasites found in raccoon droppings.
It’s so rare that this was the first case ever reported in our state, one of fewer than 30 reported in the U.S. since 1973.
This weekend, we learned the young patient is a 20-month-old West Seattle boy named Reed. His mom, Mandy Hall, told her family’s story publicly for the first time, in an online group, and contacted WSB too, because she is determined to educate as many people as possible about the roundworm known as Baylisascaris.
Their terrifying ordeal is not over yet, but Reed “continues to improve literally by the minute,” Mandy said.
Here’s how it began: “On April 26th, I called Reed’s pediatrician because he was sleeping so much. He had been sleeping long hours through the night and taking naps over 3 hours for a few days. This day, by the afternoon he had only been awake for 2 hours. They said it was likely a growth spurt and commented on great timing with me being due with our baby girl the following day … But something in me didn’t feel right. I tried setting him down to walk when he woke and his balance was off.”
Quick look at 4 highlights for your Monday:
DRUMMING CIRCLE: 3 pm at Senior Center of West Seattle. (4217 SW Oregon)
COMMUNITY ORCHARD MEETUP: 5-7 pm today and most Mondays, you’re invited to visit the Community Orchard of West Seattle on the north end of the South Seattle College (WSB sponsor) campus for a meetup/work party. Bring gloves and water and be ready to help and learn! (6000 16th SW)
TINKERLAB ACADEMY: FUTURE FASHION: 6-8 pm at Delridge Library: “In this three-part series, learn basic circuitry and sewing as you add LEDs to textiles to create Future Fashion. Drop-in activities will also be available each week.” Part of the ongoing free STEM-based Tinkerlab craft activities; all ages welcome. (5423 Delridge Way SW)
ALL-AGES MONDAY QUIZ: 7:30 pm at The Skylark. Prizes! (3803 Delridge Way SW)
LOOK AHEAD … to the rest of this week and beyond, via our complete-calendar page!
6:56 AM: Good morning! Full sunshine and no incidents in/from West Seattle so far.
8:19 AM: Still nothing of note. So we’ll take a moment to remind you that, just south of here, the Highway 509 northbound paving project is now under way. Ongoing updates are on this WSDOT page (scroll down to 509); this week’s plan:
Sunday, June 4, to the morning of Friday, June 9 – The left lane of northbound State Route 509 between South 168th Street and South 112th Street will be closed from 7 p.m. to 5 a.m. nightly.
Sunday, June 4, to the morning of Friday, June 9 – The left lane of southbound State Route 509 between South 168th Street and South 112th Street will be closed from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. nightly.
Wednesday, June 7, to the morning of Thursday, June 8 – The southbound State Route 509 ramp to South 146th Street will be closed from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m.