You can help! Seal Sitters volunteer-training session ahead – as is the peak of pupping season

August 1, 2015 at 12:10 pm | In How to help, West Seattle news, Wildlife | No Comments

(Photo by Robin Lindsey)
If you’ve thought about volunteering with Seal Sitters Marine Mammal Stranding Network – here’s your chance – a training session two weeks from today:

SEAL SITTERS NEW VOLUNTEER TRAINING AUGUST 2015 SESSION
When: Saturday, August 15, 2015
Time: 10 am – 12:30 pm
Training starts promptly at 10 am (please arrive early: doors open for registration and paperwork at 9:30)

Help protect wildlife! Volunteer with Seal Sitters Marine Mammal Stranding Network. On Saturday morning, August 15th, we will be holding a special training for those wanting to protect marine mammals along the shoreline of West Seattle and the Duwamish River. Unlike most marine mammal stranding networks, we encourage children to participate in Seal Sitters – supervised at all times, of course, by a parent or guardian. We are so proud of our amazing and dedicated volunteers who are on duty rain or shine – we hope you will join us!

A multi-media presentation will illustrate Seal Sitters MMSN’s educational work in the community and the unique challenges of protecting seals and other marine mammals in an urban environment. Included in the training is an overview of NOAA’s Western Region Marine Mammal Stranding Network and biology and behavior of seals and other common pinnipeds.

FOR MORE DETAILS ABOUT LOCATION AND TO RSVP, visit Seal Sitters’ event page.
*RSVP is required to assure seating.

Seal Sitters MMSN averages 200 responses each year to reports of marine mammals (large or small species, dead or alive) on the beach. 90% of those responses are to vulnerable harbor seal pups during our busiest time of year – late summer and fall. Pupping season is now underway in South Puget Sound and Seal Sitters has responded to 4 newborn pups since the end of May. We are happy to say that one of those pups, Little Dipper (abandoned and rescued from Lincoln Park) is doing well in rehab at PAWS Wildlife Center. Visit www.blubberblog.org to learn more about Little Dipper and Seal Sitters’ recent activities.

Please join us on August 15th and help ensure that seal pups and other marine mammals can rest safely on our beaches. Due to time constraints of volunteers during the height of pupping season in West Seattle (usually August – October), this will be our final training for this season until later in the Fall. We hope you can attend!

Alki Beach 5K for Northwest Hope and Healing: 3 weeks away!

July 31, 2015 at 12:15 pm | In How to help, West Seattle news | No Comments

Ready for one more run/walk providing a good time while you do good? The Alki Beach 5K is just a little over three weeks away, on Sunday, August 23rd. As always, proceeds benefit Northwest Hope and Healing, which helps breast-cancer patients. It’s a beautiful morning run/walk along Alki – no matter what the weather – so you might as well http://alkibeachrun.com“>sign up now.

What a ride! West Seattleite Joel Kampf arrives on Alki after pedaling cross-country for World Bicycle Relief

July 30, 2015 at 3:11 pm | In How to help, West Seattle news, West Seattle people | 14 Comments

(WSB photos by Patrick Sand)
Joel Kampf just arrived home from a bike ride. A big bike ride – 4,500 miles. A big bike ride with a big achievement, raising money for World Bicycle Relief. And he got a big welcome:

Joel’s wife LaVonne Dorsey and friends showered him with champagne as he turned onto 53rd SW to head home. He’s been on the road for more than two months (read his chronicles here), so hugs and kisses were in order too:

Thanks to LaVonne for letting us know so we could be there for Joel’s big arrival. She shared this information about his ride for World Bicycle Relief, which started May 14th in Williamsburg, Virginia:

The goal is to bring bicycles to the developing world as engines for economic and cultural empowerment.

Having built and distributed over 230,000 bikes this year, their Educational Empowerment Program provides bikes to students (70% girls), teachers and education workers in rural Africa. With the ability to save time and shorten distances between schools and villages, the program dramatically improves grades and attendance rates after students receive bicycles. Other programs include a Healthcare effort that helps workers who would walk over 4 miles a day to visit four patients, visit 18 patients in a single day; (also) micro-finance, Environmental and social enterprise programs.

For $147, we can provide a World Bicycle Relief bicycle to a student in need. Every donation helps. Seattle is one of the most successful and supportive bicycle commuting cities in the country and we also realize the importance of cycling for recreation and good health.

Even more friends and family were waiting at Joel and LaVonne’s house for a welcome-home party. You can still donate, by the way, even though his journey’s done – here’s how.

2nd year of ‘Find It, Fix It’ walks brings 1st one for West Seattle

July 28, 2015 at 1:03 pm | In Delridge, How to help, West Seattle news | 10 Comments

(City photo from Find It, Fix It walk last July in the Central District)

More than one year after the city launched a series of “Find It, Fix It” walks, one is finally scheduled for West Seattle. According to the Department of Neighborhoods‘ “West Seattle News You Can Use” newsletter, it’ll happen in North Delridge on October 3rd. Months away, but you can get ready:

Save the date! On Saturday, October 3, 2015, Mayor Murray’s Find-It/Fix-It Community Walk is coming to Delridge! The proposed walk route will include areas in and around the SW Brandon Street node.

In 2014, Mayor Ed Murray initiated Find It, Fix It Community Walks, a series of Mayor-led walks that help improve neighborhoods one block at a time. During these walks, neighbors, police, and City officials walk together to identify physical elements in the neighborhood that make it feel unsafe or poorly maintained. Examples include overgrown trees, graffiti, street light outages, and litter. Once the elements are identified, the City and community work together to fix the problems.

To date, nine Community Walks have been held throughout the city, resulting in hundreds of infrastructure improvements – from new trash and recycle bins to upgraded street lights.
- See more (here).

INTRODUCING COMMUNITY PROJECT GRANTS
This year’s walks come with an added bonus. In partnership with Cities of Service – a national nonprofit that works with mayors to implement high-impact volunteering strategies – up to $5,000 in Community Project Grants will support community-led revitalization projects in each walk neighborhood ($25,000 total). …

The goal of Community Project Grants is to support the volunteer efforts of community members who are working together to improve the appearance and safety of their neighborhoods. The community engagement from this process builds unity and a common purpose that strengthens neighborhoods. For more on last year’s walks head HERE.

WAYS TO GET INVOLVED
All are welcome to participate in the walk on October 3rd, but there are other ways to get involved as well. You and your community group can apply for grant funds to do an small improvement project, or you can serve on the Community Walk Action Team. For more information, contact the Mayor’s Find-It/Fix-It Team or contact Kerry Wade (Neighborhood District Coordinator) at kerry.wade@seattle.gov or via phone at 206-733-9091.

Kids helping kids: ‘Stuff the Bus’ drive stops at Fauntleroy Children’s Center

July 23, 2015 at 3:41 pm | In Fauntleroy, How to help, West Seattle news | 2 Comments

That’s Pablo and he’s one of the Fauntleroy Children’s Center students who helped Stuff the Bus when WestSide Baby‘s diaper drive made a stop at historic Fauntleroy Schoolhouse today.

These might just be the youngest bus-stuffers to participate in this year’s drive.

We’re told that the FCC community gathered 4,000 diapers to contribute! The young donors got a chance to hang out in the bus a bit, too.

The heart of this year’s drive started with last Sunday’s donation event at HomeStreet Bank (WSB sponsor) in The Junction and – since WestSide Baby serves families outside this area too – continues on Capitol Hill this weekend (9 am-2 pm Sunday at St. Joseph’s, 732 18th Ave. E.). If you haven’t donated yet, go here to find out how to help.

P.S. Congratulations to Fauntleroy Children’s Center for recently getting re-accredited for five more years by the National Association for the Education of Young Children! Director Kim Sheridan says, “We have been accredited since 1987 and are currently the only center in West Seattle with NAEYC accreditation.”

Retired Marine’s ‘Valor Run’ to stop in West Seattle on Saturday

July 22, 2015 at 3:41 pm | In How to help, West Seattle news, Westwood | 1 Comment

Tomorrow morning, retired U.S. Marine Corps Major Bridget Guerrero starts a four-day, 160-mile run around Puget Sound, and it will include a stop Saturday at Westwood Village, according to a notice circulated to merchants there. (Thanks to Donna at Giannoni’s Pizza for the tip.) The photo is courtesy of our friends at MyEdmondsNews.com, who wrote last weekend about Maj. Guerrero’s plan, part of Valor Run, an organization honoring military women lost in Iraq and Afghanistan; 160 have died since 9/11, so Guerrero’s run will include one mile for each. According to the webpage about her run – where you can make a donation – “Bridget’s goal is to raise $5,000, which will be split between Valor Run, Inc. and the USMC Scholarship Foundation for a scholarship given in the name of USMC MAJ Megan McClung.”

Guerrero starts running tomorrow morning on Whidbey Island and will conclude her run Sunday in Dupont, southeast of Joint Base Lewis-McChord. Her full route can be seen here, and you are invited to run with her at any point along the way. She is expected to arrive at Westwood Village sometime between 12:30 pm and 3 pm on Saturday. An “honor station” will be set up for the occasion in the center of WWV across from Carter’s, according to the notice circulated to merchants, which says it will be supported by Warrior Pointe as well as by a local family, relatives of U.S. Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Jarod Newlove, killed in Afghanistan five years ago.

UPDATE: You can keep helping WestSide Baby ‘Stuff the Bus’

July 19, 2015 at 11:23 am | In How to help, West Seattle news | 1 Comment


11:23 AM: Just checked in on the WestSide BabyStuff the Bus diaper-drive kickoff – our Instagram photo above looks inside the bus that’s in the parking lot at HomeStreet Bank (WSB sponsor). As of just after 11 am, it held 12,697 diapers – a good start, but just a drop in the diaper bucket, so anything and everything you can contribute will be a big help. If you can’t make it to HomeStreet (41st/Alaska), your nearest Safeway is collecting diapers today too. Updates to come!

12:51 PM: A little more than an hour left in today’s kickoff event – stop by the bus and commemorate your donation with a cute photo like this one:

This year’s theme (and hashtag) is #Smile4Diapers.

2:26 PM UPDATE: As of the top of the hour – 28,800 diapers and many more to be counted from the satellite dropoff locations.

We’ll be adding photos and more info on what you can do as the drive continues. (added) Here are the victorious smiles of today’s crew at The Bus:

Help them get closer to the half-million-diaper goal this week … donate money via text or Web, as explained here, or drop off diapers at ongoing locations.

Got diapers? WestSide Baby has the bus, ready for Stuff the Bus kickoff on Sunday

July 16, 2015 at 7:13 pm | In How to help, West Seattle news | No Comments

With three days to go until the big kickoff for WestSide Baby‘s annual “Stuff the Bus” mega-diaper drive, we spotted THE bus this afternoon at Fauntleroy/Alaska – and then learned from WS Baby’s executive director Nancy Woodland, it had just been unveiled:

Our new and exciting bus just arrived in West Seattle!! This afternoon it appeared in the parking lot at Les Schwab to kick off the weekend of diaper collecting in West Seattle. Les Schwab is holding drives all over Western Washington so this was the perfect place to unveil this year’s bus. We hope to see everyone on Sunday when we collect diapers at HomeStreet Bank (41st/Alaska) from 10-2 but feel free to drop off at a Les Schwab or a local Safeway if you can’t make it Sunday. Go, West Seattle, and let’s #Smile4Diapers!!!

P.S. Look for Stuff the Bus in Saturday’s West Seattle Grand Parade (11 am start at California/Lander, heading 1.5 miles south to California/Edmunds)!

P.P.S. You can also drop off diapers in advance – Friday’s a great day! – at the site of Sunday’s bus-stuffing, HomeStreet Bank (WSB sponsor).

WestSide Baby ‘Stuff the Bus’ countdown: Diaper dropoffs

July 13, 2015 at 8:24 pm | In How to help, West Seattle news | 6 Comments

Another of this weekend’s many big events – WestSide Baby‘s “Stuff the Bus” diaper-drive kickoff event! If you can’t make it to the HomeStreet Bank (WSB sponsor) parking lot at 41st/Alaska during the 10 am-2 pm event on Sunday (July 19th), you can drop off diapers there all week long, and at other spots including the Fauntleroy Schoolhouse. The sizes needed most: Newborn, size 6, and all sizes of pull-ups. The reason this is so important, as WestSide Baby points out: Diapers can’t be purchased using food stamps or other forms of government assistance, but cost up to $150/month, and families can’t just go without – besides the obvious health and comfort implications, child-care providers require diapers, and without child care, parents can’t get to their jobs. P.S. If you need a reminder about Sunday, you’ll get it from WS Baby’s “Stuff the Bus” contingent in the West Seattle Grand Parade on Saturday (11 am, California/Lander to California/Edmunds).

REPORT #1: West Seattle 4th of July Kids’ Parade 2015

July 4, 2015 at 10:16 am | In Fun stuff to do, How to help, West Seattle news | Comments Off


10:16 AM: Just a quick note to let you know – in case you’re not already here – that the West Seattle 4th of July Kids’ Parade has just begun, traveling through part of North Admiral, starting at 44th/Sunset (map), heading west, then south, then east along Atlantic, across California, and finishing at Hamilton Viewpoint Park. Immediately post-parade, that’s where you’ll find fun family games (sack races, etc.), concessions, and more. Traffic reminder: Police stop vehicles on California while the parade crosses, so be aware of that – we plan to update when the parade gets to that point. Until we’re back at HQ, watch for photos on the WSB Twitter and Instagram feeds. Happy 4th!

10:39 AM: California just reopened at Atlantic – the parade has finished crossing. Now it’s on to the post-parade festival at Hamilton Viewpoint.


(Above & below – guest emcees for the sack races included City Council District 1 candidates Shannon Braddock, above, and Chas Redmond, below)




12:10 PM: Just back from the festivities – added a few of our social-media clips/photos here; report #2 will be up later today with video of the entire parade, before/during/after photos, and more.

You can help! West Seattle Food Bank needs more books for kids

June 30, 2015 at 10:10 pm | In How to help, West Seattle books, West Seattle news | 2 Comments

Doing some pre-holiday cleaning? Got children’s books that the kids in your family have outgrown? Consider taking them to the West Seattle Food Bank, which provided the photos and the request:

The West Seattle Food Bank’s Bookcase Program is in need of all kinds of gently used children’s books, especially board books. Our Bookcase Program has grown tremendously over the last year – we distributed over 12,000 adult and children books all through generous donations from our community. Our clients love the program; they can take up to 10 books home to keep. Donation hours are Monday – Friday 9 am – 3 pm and we are located at 3419 SW Morgan St. on the corner of 35th & Morgan. Enter through the garage on Morgan, come in, and we have volunteers that can help you with your donation. Thank you so much.

(You want to make somebody smile before the holiday, right?)

You can help! Be part of GreenLife at West Seattle Summer Fest

June 28, 2015 at 4:40 pm | In How to help, West Seattle festivals, West Seattle news | Comments Off

Less than two weeks now until the biggest event of the year in West Seattle – Summer Fest, happening in The Junction Friday-Sunday, July 10-12. If you’re not already part of it as a vendor or volunteer, here’s a chance to help make it happen: Tamsen Spengler from West Seattle Timebank says not only can her group use some of your time, the sustainability expo GreenLife – where WST and other organizations will be headquartered – has volunteer openings too. Go here to find out how to pitch in.

VIDEO: West Seattle teen and dad heading out on another big bicycle ride to help Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation

June 27, 2015 at 7:20 pm | In How to help, West Seattle news, West Seattle people | 6 Comments

That quick video is a pitch from Cal Prinster, who you’ve probably seen here before – dating back to 2011, when he and dad Gordon Prinster finished a 1,732-mile West Coast bicycle ride, raising money for the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation along the way. The year after that, they rode cross-country. And today, we learned they’re about to head out on a ride to Austin, Texas, as Cal explains in the clip – he’s now a sophomore at West Seattle High School, where his dad is the school psychologist. Gordon’s wife Bernadette Brown says, “While it’s shorter than their ride to NYC, it’s going to be a challenging one with two mountain ranges and ridiculous heat.” If you’re inspired to donate to PBTF, you can do that online, here – as they say on that page, “Now, we know we’ve hit you up a few times over the years, so you might have a touch of ‘solicitation fatigue,’ but we also know there’s no better cause to support. No, nobody in our family is sick. But there are plenty of kids who do need our help. Every day, 13 more kids in the US will be diagnosed with a brain tumor. By supporting the PBTF, we can help give these kids hope for a brighter future!”

West Seattle 4th of July 2015: Parade prep time! Can you help?

June 23, 2015 at 11:51 pm | In Fun stuff to do, Holidays, How to help, West Seattle news | 1 Comment

The photos are from West Seattle 4th of July Kids’ Parade organizer Jackie Clough of Alki Party Treasures (WSB sponsor) – as of tonight, Walking on Logs alongside the Fauntleroy end of the West Seattle Bridge is decked out as a red, white, and blue reminder that the holiday is just a week and a half away.

As always, the parade starts at 10 am on the 4th (which is on a Saturday this year) at 44th and Sunset in North Admiral (map) – all welcome to participate – walking, biking, riding in a stroller or wagon. The route goes through the neighborhood and then over to Hamilton Viewpoint Park for post-parade games (sack races, etc.). Three ways to help:

1. Bring diapers for WestSide Baby
2. Volunteer to help with the post-parade games
3. Loan Jackie a bullhorn/microphone so they can bag the equipment that in the past has cut out on the national-anthem singer and announcements

E-mail her at jackie@alkipartytreasures.com if you can help with #2 and/or #3 – for #1, just bring them on the 4th!

HAPPENING NOW: Relay for Life at West Seattle Stadium

June 19, 2015 at 7:15 pm | In How to help, West Seattle news | 1 Comment


West Seattle Relay for Life opens with the survivors' lap. All-night fundraising event. #westseattle

A video posted by West Seattle Blog (@westseattleblog) on

7:15 PM: Applauding friends and family lined the track at West Seattle Stadium as purple-shirted cancer survivors walked a special lap to open this year’s Relay for Life less than an hour ago. It’s an all-night fundraiser for the American Cancer Society, with more than 20 teams participating this year; they’ll each keep someone on the track until closing ceremonies tomorrow morning. You’re welcome to visit and cheer them on until tonight’s luminaria ceremony (10 pm) is over, and again as they wrap up tomorrow morning. More photos once we’re back at HQ. P.S. Here’s where to donate online.

8:14 PM: Just added our photos from the early going. Above, a sign of support for a young cancer patient, shown to us by longtime Relay volunteers Gerry and Lauri Cunningham (you might know them as the mother-and-daughter team who raise money through grab-and-go dinner events each year). Also there tonight, Key Club members from local high schools, working on their tent:

Most teams have tents/canopies in the infield for the duration of R4L. And many have signage, sometimes whimsical, related to the team name:

The gophers were courtesy of Team Go For It. Meantime, back on the track, supporters were invited to walk with the survivors after their first lap:

While the luminaria ceremony at 10 – in honor of those who are gone, as well as those in the fight now – is open to the public, the stadium gates close from 11:30 pm until early morning, but you can see on the schedule (bottom of this page) the activities that Relay for Life participants have planned all night long.

1:03 AM: Thanks to stadium-area resident Ann for sharing the photo from the luminaria ceremony, including HOPE spelled out in lights in the stadium stands:

2016 West Seattle Wildlife Calendar: Help it take off!

June 17, 2015 at 8:50 am | In How to help, West Seattle news | Comments Off

The first-ever West Seattle Wildlife Calendar featuring photos by Mark Wangerin, who kindly has shared so many here on WSB, was a hit – sold out, raising money for students at Chief Sealth International High School, where Mark taught for so long.

Now the small independent local publisher that printed his calendar, Mark House Publishing (which donated ALL proceeds from it), is getting ready for a 2016 West Seattle Wildlife Calendar. Mark and Mark House are hoping for a little help, so the calendar sales can yield even more for the students: They’re crowdfunding to raise money to help cover the print run of 500. Laura Robb of Mark House explains:

Just like last year, the calendar sales will benefit Chief Sealth International High School environmental programs. Last year the sales netted Chief Sealth $1200 and helped them host the WAGIN leadership conference for 200+ students at Sealth in March.

With double the run of calendars this year, our goal is $2500. However, if we can crowdfund the printing costs, the donation could rise to $5000. We need people to contribute just $10 to the campaign. $10 will print 2 calendars and net the students over $20. For contributors of $50 or more, we are offering an autographed print of Mark’s bald eagle photo from the cover of the 2016 calendar, as seen above. Here’s how to contribute.

The calendar will go on sale in September; if you’re interested in pre-ordering it, e-mail markhousepublish@gmail.com.

TOMORROW MORNING: Alki Beach cleanup with Seal Sitters

June 12, 2015 at 8:18 pm | In Environment, How to help, West Seattle beaches, West Seattle news | 4 Comments

Thanks to Lamont Granquist for that photo from earlier this week – yes, taken from a distance, while a Seal Sitters Marine Stranding Network volunteer guarded the pup near Alki Point Lighthouse. We saved it so we could publish it with this reminder of tomorrow morning’s beach cleanup on Alki – meet Seal Sitters at Statue of Liberty Plaza (61st/Alki) at 9 am; the cleanup continues until 11:30, but whatever time you can give to it will be appreciated. The cleanup is in honor of Sandy the seal pup who died in 2012 after getting tangled in marine debris, and the Arroyos gray whale whose 2010 necropsy revealed a belly full of trash. Whatever you clean from the beach tomorrow (or any other day) will be that much less pollution in our waters – if it’s left on the beach, it’ll get into Puget Sound eventually.

You can help! West Seattle-filmed ‘Present Perfect’ almost done

June 8, 2015 at 3:19 pm | In How to help, West Seattle news, WS culture/arts | 5 Comments

“What can the very young and the very old offer each other, if given the chance?” That’s one of the questions you’ll see asked in the trailer above for a documentary focused on West Seattle’s acclaimed Intergenerational Learning Center at Providence Mount St. Vincent. The film, “Present Perfect,” is almost complete; it’s been two years in the making and now filmmaker Evan Briggs is in post-production. As is often the case for noncommercial creations, she could use a little help getting to the finish line, and so a Kickstarter campaign is in progress. Briggs explains on her film’s website:

Up until now, this entire project has been a labor of love, funded entirely out of my own pocket. I invested in new camera and audio equipment so that I could function as a one-woman crew, I paid babysitters to watch my kids so that I could shoot three times a week for the entire school year, and I’ve spent countless hours applying for grants and pitching this film to as many people as possible. I’ve gladly taken all of this on because of how strongly I believe in the power of this story and its potential impact. And while I will continue to work uncompensated hours on this project, I do need funding to pay the professionals who can help me take it to the next level.

The ILC serves kids six weeks to 5 years of age – and of course, those ageless Mount residents, too. Thanks to everyone who messaged us to suggest sharing the news about “Present Perfect.”

ONE WEEK AWAY: Seal Sitters doubleheader – beach cleanup & volunteer training

June 6, 2015 at 2:43 pm | In How to help, West Seattle news | 3 Comments

Next Saturday, it’s two ways in one day to get involved with Seal Sitters and others who care about the local environment and wildlife. They’re separate events – you can participate in one or both – but since both are happening next Saturday, and requesting RSVPs, we’re telling you about them together:

(Photo by David Hutchinson)

SENTINELS OF THE SOUND BEACH CLEANUP (9 am-11:30 am)

Tying in with our theme of marine debris for Flipper Fest, we are having a beach cleanup at Alki on Saturday morning, June 13th, from 9-11:30 am. It will be a very low tide that day and we expect to find a lot of trash and most certainly at least 1,000 cigarette butts – of the estimated 360 billion that are discarded every year in the U.S. alone, all the while leaching toxic chemicals into the soil and waterways. Since most marine debris originates from land, we will be scouring the streets and sidewalks along the beach as well.

We hope to have a big turnout of passionate people who want to help keep wildlife safe. For more details, you can visit our website events page. There you will find info on West Seattle seal pup Sandy and the Arroyos gray whale, in whose honor we hold these annual beach cleanups.

We’re requesting that folks RSVP on the link included on the events page so that we can ensure we have enough buckets and other materials on hand. NOAA’s Peggy Foreman will give a short talk about the human trash found in the Arroyos whale before we disperse. PAWS Wildlife will have a representative there to discuss seal pup rehab. We’ll assemble at the Statue of Liberty plaza.

And then a bit later …

(Photo by Robin Lindsey)

SEAL SITTERS NEW VOLUNTEER TRAINING: JUNE 2015 SESSION

When: Saturday, June 13, 2015
Time: 1 – 3:30 pm
Training starts promptly at 1 (doors open at 12:30)
RSVP required (see below)

Help protect wildlife! Volunteer with Seal Sitters Marine Mammal Stranding Network. On Saturday afternoon, June 13th, we will be holding a special training for those wanting to protect marine mammals along the shoreline of West Seattle and the Duwamish River. Unlike most marine mammal stranding networks, we encourage children to participate in Seal Sitters – supervised at all times, of course, by a parent or guardian. We are so proud of our amazing and dedicated volunteers who are on duty rain or shine – we hope you will join us!

A multi-media presentation will illustrate Seal Sitters MMSN’s educational work in the community and the unique challenges of protecting seals and other marine mammals in an urban environment. Included in the training is an overview of NOAA’s Western Region Marine Mammal Stranding Network and biology and behavior of seals and other pinnipeds (due to time frame, supplementary sessions will include more marine mammals of Puget Sound).

FOR MORE DETAILS AND RSVP, visit Seal Sitters’ event page . RSVP is required to assure seating.

HAPPENING NOW: Car wash raising $ for Seattle Lutheran cheer

June 6, 2015 at 12:29 pm | In How to help, West Seattle news, West Seattle schools | 2 Comments

Have a vehicle that needs to be washed? First benefit car wash of the (almost) summer season – that we’ve heard of, anyway. It’s for the Seattle Lutheran High School cheer squad and they’re washing vehicles at the West Seattle Eagles parking lot in The Junction (4426 California SW) until 3:30 today, $10 donation.

Bike to work? Find out about Ride Around the Sound along the trail this Thursday

June 2, 2015 at 8:36 pm | In Health, How to help, West Seattle news | Comments Off

If you’ll be bicycling to or from the low bridge on Thursday morning between 6:30 and 9:30 am, set aside a few minutes for a stop along the way. Just out of the WSB inbox:

Two local West Seattle businesses are teaming up to support the American Lung Association. Brad Loetel, owner of West Seattle Cyclery, will be in the West Seattle Cyclery Tent, as usual on Thursday mornings, handing out coffee, refreshments, and mechanical support to bike commuters. Mike Mulligan of AAA Washington will join Brad on this Thursday to help raise awareness of the American Lung Association’s Ride Around the Sound fundraising ride scheduled for September 19, 2015. We hope cyclists will stop and learn about this one-day, fully supported fundraising ride to support the good work of the American Lung Association.

(AAA is a WSB sponsor.)

You can help! Highland Park Elementary’s field day, coming up

May 31, 2015 at 10:36 pm | In How to help, West Seattle news, West Seattle schools | Comments Off

If you can spare a few hours on June 12th, you can help with a Highland Park Elementary tradition. From HPE teacher Kevin Schmidt:

Highland Park’s annual field day is June 12th from 8:30-3:00. We are running short on volunteers and are hoping the community could help us out. Volunteers would help run events like shoe kick, Bat Spin and Noodle tag. All stations would be staffed by school personnel with the assistance of volunteers. Volunteers could help in the morning from 8:30-11:30, in the afternoon from 12:00-3:00 or all day. All volunteers must be background-checked and cleared through Seattle Public Schools.

If you’re available/interested, e-mail krschmidt@seattleschools.org or 206-252-8240.

HAPPENING NOW: First-ever Flipper Fest with Seal Sitters & friends

May 31, 2015 at 3:10 pm | In How to help, West Seattle news, Wildlife | 2 Comments

If you approach the Alki Bathhouse‘s east side while on your way to Flipper Fest – which continues until 5 pm – you’ll see that life-size inflatable orca, representing, according to a sign and to the trading card that volunteer Laura gave us, J-26, aka “Mike,” a Southern Resident Killer Whale born in 1991. Inside the bathhouse, lots more to learn at this event presented by Seal Sitters with many collaborators and partners:

It’s fun, with a lesson – how to be mindful of, and protect, the creatures with which we share our shores and waters. Even the art has something to teach:

Those images of seals (the one at right, by Denise Hughes from a photo by Seal Sitters’ Robin Lindsey are made from bottle caps, as is a jellyfish outside:

They are reminders that if you use plastic bottles, be sure to dispose of them safely so they don’t find their way into our waters, where they can do so much harm to sea life. A simple outdoor display also suggests you might want to think twice about Sky Lanterns:

They look beautiful in flight, but fall into the water or onto the ground as dangerous trash. Speaking of trash – at Flipper Fest, you can find out more about Seal Sitters’ beach cleanup coming up on June 13th, which is also the date they’ll be training more volunteers – who are needed for everything from protecting seal pups on local beaches, to helping at events like this. Find out more at blubberblog.org and at Alki Bathhouse until 5 pm today – free, but you can donate to SS by buying $1 tickets for raffles with cool donated prizes listed here.

VIDEO: 64 ‘Laps With Lou’ for Make-A-Wish @ Pathfinder K-8

May 29, 2015 at 9:26 am | In How to help, Pigeon Point, West Seattle news | 5 Comments

(Lou’s first lap – everybody takes off, then he finally joins)
Hundreds of people are running and walking the Pathfinder K-8 playfield right now with PE teacher Lou Cutler to raise money for Make-A-Wish.

(Lou starts 2nd lap, as volunteer marks it on the official easel)
It’s been a remarkable event every year – this is Lou’s 12th annual birthday run, one lap for every year he’s been alive, 64 laps this year – but it’s more emotional than ever right now, because this is the last one before Lou retires. Here’s what he said right before it all began at 9 am:

To help him celebrate, former students are here too – and it’s extra-festive because it’s “Fandom Day” at Pathfinder, with many kids wearing costumes or accessories in tribute to characters they’re fans of – superheroes, manga, you name it.

Today’s superhero, however, is Lou, who just finished lap #6 as we write, and got lots of warm greetings before the run:

You can donate in his honor to Make-A-Wish – an organization for which he volunteers aside from the annual run, too – by going here.

NOON UPDATE: Stopped by for a few minutes to see how it’s going:


Lou’s still going strong. As is everybody along for the run – including his longtime head cheerleader, Pathfinder teacher Andy Darring:

(That photo was from the early going.)

1:37 PM: He did it!

As of a short time ago, 64 laps, with most of the school coming back out to the playfield to join him for the last two, and everyone chanting (as you can hear in the video), “Lou! Lou! Lou!”

Run’s over but you can still donate.

LAST CALL: Spend a few minutes to answer a few questions from the Fauntleroy Community Association

May 28, 2015 at 7:50 pm | In Fauntleroy, How to help, West Seattle news | Comments Off

If you haven’t already … can you help with this?

Do you live between the Arroyos and Morgan Street? Travel through or do business in Fauntleroy? The Fauntleroy Community Association (FCA) wants to hear from you! The FCA has a new community survey to identify and rank local issues. The anonymous survey can be accessed through fauntleroy.net and then clicking on “FCA Survey.” The survey takes just a few minutes, and will provide guidance to the FCA Board on where to focus their efforts during the next two years.The results from the 2013 survey led to the FCA organizing community meetings with city officials to address crime and traffic issues, and helped our group define plans of action. The current survey will be available online through Sunday (June 1st). Take the survey and help to shape the future of your community!

West Seattle 4th of July Parade is on! 2 ways for you to help

May 27, 2015 at 7:21 pm | In Holidays, How to help, West Seattle news | 2 Comments

(WSB file photo from 2012 4th of July Parade)
West Seattle’s 4th of July Kids’ Parade – one of the few 4th of July parades in the region – is on. At least – the basics are locked in, and that’s no small feat; the most recent update from organizer Jackie Clough (proprietor of WSB sponsor Alki Party Treasures) is that “The event proof of insurance came through today so we are absolutely ready!” That means it’s on to the permit phase. Here’s where you come in: The insurance, which used to be picked up by a sponsor, now needs donated dollars, as do other costs such as the aforementioned permits, so a crowdfunding campaign has been launched – go here to chip in. And then there’s the volunteer power. Some aspects of the big day are already handled – the Admiral Neighborhood Association is selling concessions (Popsicles, baked treats) and Leilani Nitkey, who rocked the national anthem last year, will do it again this year. Here’s the list of volunteer needs:

*Volunteers needed day of:

—-9:00-9:30 am to help coordinate our start
—-10:30-noon at Hamilton Viewpoint Park for games and cleanup

*West Seattle businesses and organizations who are interested in having a craft table at the park, please contact Jackie at Jackie@alkipartytreasures.com

(That’s the same address at which you can contact Jackie to volunteer, too.) The parade will travel the same route as past years, starting at 10 am at 44th/Sunset – just show up and you’re part of it.

HAPPENING NOW: Bid on cool local stuff, help Nepal quake survivors

May 24, 2015 at 5:04 pm | In How to help, West Seattle news | 1 Comment

The patio at C & P Coffee Company (WSB sponsor) is a nice place to be on a quiet Sunday afternoon … especially when you have the chance to do a good deed:

Those are some of the donated items up for silent-auction bids this afternoon in a fundraiser organized by Jilyan Perry, to help with earthquake relief through volunteer-run Changing Lives Nepal, as previewed here earlier this week. Stop by until 7 pm, have some coffee, beer or wine, enjoy some music:

That’s James Terrano, who was playing when we stopped by. C & P is at 5612 California SW.

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