One more option for tonight besides all the cool things we already previewed in our “West Seattle Saturday” roundup – the World Dance Party, held periodically around the area, is in nearby South Park, and WSB, along with our partner site The South Park News, is co-sponsoring. Here are the details:
The party of parties, the World Dance Party (WDP), is happening tonight! The WDP is a FREE multigenerational and multicultural potluck and dance party. I truly hope you can join us. Here is some more information:
World Dance Party is a fun, FREE event designed to get neighbors to interact and to celebrate each other’s culture and diversity. Everyone from all backgrounds and ages is welcome. It’s a potluck! Several multicultural dances are taught by volunteer instructors in 20-minute mini-lessons, then everyone dances. That’s it. There’s no other agenda. No fundraising. No lectures. Just food and dancing and community.
WHERE: South Park Community Center: 8319 8th Ave. South, Seattle,
WHEN: Saturday, March 23rd, 2013; 6:00 pm – 9:30 pm
WHO: Dance Instructor lineup at the World Dance Party 8 includes:
• West African Dance
• Hula Dancing
• Senior Sliders Line Dancing
• Harlem Shake
• Laotian Dancing
• Jarabe Tapatio/La Raspa
• Salsa Dancing
• And more
That’s one of two maps accompanying the last item on tomorrow morning’s Seattle City Council briefing agenda (9 am, City Hall downtown) – an update on possible annexations, as first reported on partner site White Center Now last week. Seattle leaders have a lot to talk about, since White Center and vicinity (“Area Y” on the map above) voters said no to Burien last November, and the Boundary Review Board rejected a bid for the Duwamish Triangle to be annexed by Tukwila. While it’s expected our city will pursue the Duwamish Triangle and the South Park “sliver by the river,” White Center and vicinity remains a wild card – the city has long had dibs on it but elected officials have repeatedly declared annexation unaffordable, and allowed Burien to pursue it first. There’s still an enticement dangling, but not for long – sales-tax credit to offset the cost of annexation, if it’s in the works by the start of 2015. Will the city pursue big, or small, or not at all? If you can’t be there tomorrow (note that it’s not a vote, just a briefing), you can watch live at 9 am via Seattle Channel (on-air or online).
The main west-east route in South Park, South Cloverdale, is closed right now at and around 10th Avenue South (map) because of a deadly crash. Seattle Police say one person was hit by two cars; Seattle Fire says the person has died. Details are on our partner site The South Park News.
Every so often, a thief makes off with a boat on a trailer. The one reported in South Park over the weekend is not your everyday stolen boat on a trailer. We just called Seattle Police to follow up on an over-the-air “be on the lookout” heard on Monday, and here’s what Det. Mark Jamieson told us: The “fast-attack prototype” boat was on a three-axle, 40-foot boat trailer with a red and white 1987 Freightliner cab, taken from a fenced area on the east side of a commercial building in the 1400 block of South Henderson (map). The report says it had been parked there since March of last year and was believed to have been stolen Sunday night; the gate lock had been cut. Asked if there were any other identifying features we could mention about the stolen boat, Det. Jamieson says the trailer was reported to say “Maaco” on the side, and the trailer “might have a white, yellow, orange, and blue cargo box on the back.” As with all stolen vehicles, if you think you’ve seen this, call 911.
Concord Elementary in South Park is part of the West Seattle region for Seattle Public Schools, and one of its fourth-grade classes is asking for your help in getting a $1,000 grant for technology: Marina Pita‘s class made a video to enter in the online vote at changemyschool.com – a quick, no-strings-attached, no-registration-required type of vote: Just go here (and take a minute to watch the video too)!
(Photos by Nick Adams for WSB)
That pile of presents awaits kids at a South Park Community Center celebration today – thanks in no small part to the work of two Chief Sealth International High School seniors. We first told you last month about the toy drive Clint Hewitt and Conrad Hill organized as their senior project, Holidays 4 Hope. On Friday, like Santa Claus, they delivered what they had collected:
That’s SPCC’s Carmen Martinez hugging Conrad as Clint unloads more of the 425 toys they collected, donated by West Seattleites, schoolchildren to shop patrons:
At the center, volunteers were wrapping the presents soon to be received by excited kids:
Decorations were going up too – below right, Maja Hansen was working with volunteers from the Health Perspectives group:
Clint and Conrad had donation bins at 3 local businesses and 2 schools while collecting the toys they just delivered.
Though Holidays 4 Hope’s toy drive is over, lots of West Seattle giving opportunities remain – some listed in the WSB Holidays Guide
One of the two teenagers killed in last Sunday night’s South Park crash has been laid to rest: After her viewing in White Center and funeral Mass at Holy Family, 13-year-old Lucie Hernandez was to be buried at a cemetery in Tukwila this afternoon. A funeral Mass is planned Monday at St. Mary’s in the Central District for 16-year-old Luis Martinez, who was a student at TEC High School on the Evergreen campus in White Center.
The two boys who survived the crash are also Evergreen campus students, according to Highline Public Schools, at TEC and at the Arts and Academics Academy, while the third survivor has been identified as Lucie’s sister Karla, a ninth-grader at Chief Sealth International High School.
We had previously reported an account to help Luis’s family with expenses, accessible via any BECU branch, in the name of Victor Herrera, account number 3579847581. Donations were accepted at this past Wednesday’s Denny/Sealth concert (WSB coverage here). And tonight, we have the announcement of a benefit next Monday night (November 19th) to assist both Luis and Lucie’s families:
The event will be at Mazatlan Mexican Restaurant in Renton from 5 pm-9 pm. There will be a $10 buffet fee and a chance to drop off additional donations. Radio Variedades radio host Mercedes Garcia will be hosting the event live on the radio and encouraging the community to come and support. Everyone is welcome and encouraged to spread the word.
The restaurant is at 540 Rainier Avenue South (map).
For our partner site The South Park News, we covered tonight’s SP meeting to follow up on the revelation earlier this month that the new bridge won’t be done until early 2014 – at least a few months later than projected. The meeting led by project reps from King County was lightly attended but went into detail explaining the setbacks and what’s ahead. You can see the full report here.
(May 2012 photo courtesy Hal Tangen)
Today, an answer to a question we’re asked increasingly often: When is the new South Transfer Station between West Seattle and South Park going to officially open?
The question is understandable, given that it’s now been almost half a year since the dedication ceremony for the $50 million state-of-the-art facility. Though there was a sizable media turnout for the ceremony, little coverage resulted, because starting literally minutes after the event on May 30th, the city was gripped by a crime rampage with ongoing reports filling newscasts, newspapers, and web pages (including ours): The murders of five people at Café Racer and a parking lot, a story that stretched from North Seattle to Downtown Seattle, then to West Seattle, where the killer committed suicide.
But ultimately, that had nothing to do with what has happened at the station, and not happened, in the months since. And even the official webpage for the project projected a summer opening – as in, weeks after the event. Since we’ve been getting questions about it, we just talked with Seattle Public Utilities for the latest update.
The short explanation, according to SPU spokesperson Andy Ryan: “We’re still working through the punch list.” Seems like a long time for a punch list, we suggested. Ryan elaborates, “A lot of little things just aren’t working perfectly, like the scales” – the automated chip readers that will be used with trucks are still not working reliably, and another issue is the sprinklers in the transfer station’s tunnel. “We’re behind schedule,” Ryan acknowledges, “but it’s more important that we get it right before we move into the next phase.”
That phase is scheduled to include a “shakedown” in January, when the city starts letting trucks in “to see how they do – there’ll be problems; we’ll fix them.” Then in early February, Ryan says, “we’ll let regular customers in, for limited hours” – that too will be more of a shakedown.
So when do they think it’ll be fully open for business? Ryan won’t get more specific than “first quarter” – sometime by the end of March, which will be 10 months after the dedication.
(Tribute to Lucie Hernandez; photo courtesy Denny International Middle School)
The two teenagers killed in Sunday night’s South Park crash were current and former Denny International Middle School students, confirms principal Jeff Clark, who also identifies one of the survivors as a student at adjacent Chief Sealth International High School. He is publicly sharing this letter sent home to Denny families today:
On Sunday evening there was a car crash in South Park. Tragically, the driver, Mario Luis Martinez Herrera, a former Denny student, was killed; four other teens were transported to Harborview Medical Center. One additional person died from injuries sustained in the accident at Harborview shortly after arriving.
We were deeply saddened to learn that the teen who passed away at Harborview was a Denny eighth-grader, Luciana “Lucie” Hernandez. Lucie’s older sister, Karla, a ninth-grader at Chief Sealth International High School, was also in the accident and is being treated for very serious injuries at Harborview. Our thoughts and deepest sympathy go out to the family and friends of all three students.
Today at school we had a moment of silence, an eighth-grade class meeting, individual and group grief counseling, and a place for interested students to come together at lunchtime. Additionally, students had an opportunity to begin to create a tribute which will be displayed at school and then taken to the service to be given to Lucie’s family.
While we are working to support students at school, you know your child better than anyone. You can help your child simply by talking and listening to her or him. If there is anything in particular we can do to support your child, please contact Assistant Principal, Ms. Rangel, at 252-9006 or email@example.com.
As a community, we will be developing plans to support the impacted families. Current ideas will be discussed at our Family PTSA meeting tonight at 7:00 pm in the Denny library.
10:17 PM: If you’re in eastern West Seattle, you might have noticed the big emergency response headed toward South Park earlier tonight. A car carrying five people crashed into a pole there, killing the driver, sending the survivors to the hospital, and closing a stretch of 8th Avenue South for an investigation likely to take a few more hours. The full story’s on our partner site The South Park News.
10:49 PM UPDATE: SPD has tweeted that one of the survivors died at the hospital.
MONDAY MORNING UPDATE, 7:46 AM: Everyone in the car was a teenager, according to an update on SPD Blotter this morning which says the driver was a 16-year-old boy; the passenger who died at the hospital is described as a girl, no age listed.
(Recent aerial view of bridge construction, by Long Bach Nguyen)
One week after first word that the South Park Bridge would not be complete until next year, King County has announced a meeting to update everyone who’s interested:
King County will host a community meeting at 7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 15 to update residents on the status of South Park Bridge construction. The meeting will be held at the South Park Neighborhood Center, 8201 10th Ave. S., Seattle.
During the meeting, County engineers will review construction progress, including efforts to excavate new piers. The contractor, Kiewit Massman JV, has informed the County that this phase of work has taken longer than expected, which will shift the timeline for opening the bridge. The County and the contractor are now working on a revised construction schedule. The updated timeline for bridge completion should be announced in a few weeks.
Meanwhile, other elements of the project are moving forward. Major steel components for the new bridge have started arriving. Later this month demolition of portions of the old bridge will get underway.
During the meeting, engineers will provide more details about construction activities currently underway, share photos of recently completed excavation work and answer questions.
For more information about the meeting, contact Ashley DeForest, (206) 684-1154 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
New information this afternoon, following up on a story we published last night on our partner site The South Park News: Construction of the new South Park Bridge has hit a snag, and completion will be delayed at least several months.
First word came from King County Roads’ Jay Osborne at last night’s North Highline Unincorporated Area Council meeting, which we were covering for our other partner site, White Center Now; asked by NHUAC president Barbara Dobkin for an update on the bridge’s timeline, he said there had been some trouble with its foundation, and that “conversations” were under way to figure out how that would affect the schedule.
This afternoon, we talked with King County Department of Transportation spokesperson Jeff Switzer, who says the foundation work did indeed take longer than the contractor expected – particularly the sinking of the caissons through the hardest layer of riverbed – and that means instead of a fall 2013 completion, the bridge won’t be ready until sometime in 2014. The county is awaiting a revised construction schedule, and in the meantime is discussing how to financially help businesses and others affected by the extended period of bridgelessness. It’s already been two and a half years since the old bridge was taken out of service. In the meantime, Switzer says, demolition will start soon on what’s left of the old bridge.
(Superintendent José Banda listens as Concord Elementary principal Norma Zavala speaks)
Story and photos by Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
One month into his first school year as Seattle Public Schools superintendent, José Banda came to the city’s southwest sector last night for a “regional meeting.”
It happened at Concord International School in South Park, but it was intended for the West Seattle community too. And they turned out in force, including – as promised in this letter published here last week – Sanislo Elementary, which got some reassurance relating to its kindergarten-class-size concerns during the Q/A period, which also brought questions from Arbor Heights Elementary, K-5 STEM at Boren, and Schmitz Park Elementary parents.
After Superintendent Banda was introduced with a biographical outline, including his 30 years of work in education, he turned the floor over to Concord Principal Norma Zavala, who spoke to the crowd about the school and its programs. she described its highlight as being “a school that is truly truly diverse – linguistically, ethnic, geographical, gender orientation, everything … and that’s the beauty of being an international school – we’re working every single day to apply a global perspective to our problems, to our successes, as adults and as children.”
The superintendent acknowledged parents were wondering “what IS IT we’re focused on?” and “where are we going?”
Parade season’s not over yet, as the Denny International Middle School community knows! The first two photos from Saturday are courtesy of Denny principal Jeff Clark, who reports:
The Denny International Middle School scholars did a great job today celebrating Fiestas Patrias in the South Park parade. The band sounded terrific and the Dolphin pride was loud and clear. Thank you to all the students, families, and staff who joined in this fun and important community celebration!
It was a spectacular parade:
That photo is by contributing photojournalist Nick Adams, and we have 20 more of Nick’s photos – dancers, musicians, spectators, more – in a gallery published on our partner site The South Park News; see them here.
(Photo by Sarje Rao)
If you’ve driven by the west side of South Park on 509 or thereabouts, you might have noticed smoke, and/or the TV helicopters. Here’s what’s happening: There’s a fire at an abandoned house in the 300 block of South Trenton. We have a crew there, covering it for our partner site The South Park News – here’s the latest.
(Photos by Nick Adams for WSB)
The Duwamish River represents much of West Seattle’s eastern border – and while it was in and around South Park, today’s Duwamish River Festival was for everyone in the region to celebrate the river, and each other. Above, Alki Kayak Tours (WSB sponsor) guide Jimmy Pasch on one of AKT’s free river kayak tours. Back on shore, the Duwamish Tribe‘s T’ilibshudub (Singing Feet), with Ashley Shelafoe in the forefront:
Also from the Duwamish:
The festival celebrated many cultures as well as the life in and around the river itself. The Rainier Vista Khmer Dance Group also performed:
So did Mexican folkloric dancers FlokÃ³rico Guelaguetza:
Children played games – Brian Coyotecatl reached for a disc during a fishing game:
Catherine Harris turned heads in her crab costume:
Back on the river, signs of the many cleanup and restoration projects under way:
And the tours continued:
They educated all ages – including, in the next photo, 7-year-old Rea Williams – about the river’s status as both habitat and industrial zone:
The festival featured lots of education onshore too, especially from the Duwamish River Cleanup Coalition, which presented the festival. DRCC’s James Rasmussen spoke with Mayor McGinn:
The mayor will be back in this area next Tuesday (August 27) for a Town Hall at Southwest Teen Life Center (2801 SW Thistle).
(WSB photo of boat rides during 2008 Duwamish River Festival)
Sunshine is expected again tomorrow, so it’ll be a great day to spend part of your Saturday a short distance east of West Seattle, at Duwamish Waterway Park in South Park, for the annual Duwamish River Festival.
The day will start with the Walk/Bike/Paddle fundraiser to help support the festival and get you there in a fun way – starting at 9 am, with departures from West Seattle. Not too late to sign up! Check out the options here.
T’ilibshudub/“Singing Feet”, Duwamish Tribal Youth Dance Group – 12-12:30 p.m.
Flokórico Guelaguetza, Mexican folkloric dance – 12:45-1:15 p.m.
Rainier Vista Khmer Dance Group, the longest running Cambodian Culture Dance Group in Seattle that presents our Khmer heritage – 1:30-2:00 p.m.
Vicious Puppies Crew, mind-blowing break dancing youth group – 2:15-2:45 p.m.
Supersones, Rootsy, acoustic Cuban dance music from the Northwest’s premier Son band – 3-3:50 p.m.
We will have a bouncy house that will be going from 12:30-4:00 p.m., a dunk tank that will be happening for 10 minutes every half hour … we will have raffles inbetween acts, last year’s Seafair Queen (Veronica Quintero) will be our bilingual MC, a fire truck for the first couple of hours, boat and kayak tours, a free water taxi running from Georgetown to South Park, a bicycle repair shop (throughout the whole event), free lunch (tamales, hot dogs and salad), interactive educational booths and many other things.
Two traffic notes that aren’t inside West Seattle proper but might affect some outbound from here:
SOUTH PARK FIRE: A house fire in the 1000 block of Cloverdale has police blocking that arterial between 10th and 12th. We’ll be updating coverage on our SP site.
PRESIDENTIAL DEPARTURE: After spending the night in Bellevue following his Hunts Point fundraisers, President Obama is scheduled to head back to Boeing Field in the 9 am hour, which will again mean some I-5 traffic stoppages (and, usually, a domino effect on the eastbound West Seattle Bridge).
(9:31 AM UPDATE: The president has departed – we’re on Alki watching the tribal canoes’ departure, and Air Force One flew right over.)
On Saturday – two big events starring guys in wild outfits! West Seattle at midday, South Park in the evening…
(2008 photo by David Hutchinson)
SEAFAIR PIRATES LANDING: You can make a day of it at Alki Beach, with vendors scheduled to start up around 9:30 am, though the Seafair Pirates themselves aren’t expected before the 11:30 am-12:30 pm window – if you’ve never been before, you’ll want to stake out a spot on the beach (Bathhouse vicinity) and watch the flotilla offshore to see where, when, and how the Pirates will approach and them storm ashore! Live music’s planned and more … details are on the Seafair website.
SOUTH PARK ‘LUCHA LIBRE EN LA CALLE’: The second annual edition of the popular Mexican sport, South Park style, promises to be even bigger than last year:
Our photo from a pre-show demonstration last year shows the luchadores’ (wrestlers) masks – a key part of their outfits – as are the showy moves. Tomorrow’s festivities start with kids’ activities at 3 pm and continue on through the wrestling itself (5:30 pm) – details on our partner site The South Park News. It’s a block party in the 8500 block of 14th Avenue S. (map).
Ladder 13 (pictured) from Highland Park’s Station 11 was one of the West Seattle units that helped fight a fire at a business in South Park this morning. Nobody was hurt, but SFD has just announced that damage is estimated at a million dollars. More info’s on our partner site The South Park News.
You don’t have to go it alone if you want to get a good look at the Duwamish River – join one of this summer’s guided, educational community-kayaking tours presented by the Duwamish River Cleanup Coalition/TAG, Alki Kayak Tours, the Seattle Aquarium, Sound Citizen, and the National Wildlife Federation. Two leave from West Seattle, and the other three from South Park. Kayaking experience is not required, and all gear is provided; it’s $45 per person (plus a $5 donation to DRCC/TAG). Also note that participants under 18 need to be accompanied by an adult.
The tours are all 6-8:30 pm (and you’re welcome to bring a picnic dinner):
*July 19 and September 13: Meet at T-107 Park in West Seattle (4700 W. Marginal Way SW)
*August 2, 16, 30: Meet at Duwamish Waterway Park in South Park (7900 10th Avenue S.)
You can reserve your spot on a tour by contacting Alki Kayak Tours at 206-953-0237 or email@example.com.
(Click image for larger view)
West Seattle photographer/pilot Long Bach Nguyen shares that recent view of the South Park Bridge construction site – note the western approach to the new bridge, at lower right. If you’re interested in the project, there’s a presentation in SP tonight – more in our list of what’s up for the next 13 hours or so:
COUNCIL PRESIDENT AT CHAMBER LUNCH: As noted here earlier this week, it’s your chance for Q/A with City Council President Sally Clark, who’s speaking at today’s West Seattle Chamber of Commerce Lunch, doors open 11:30 am at The Kenney (7125 Fauntleroy Way SW; WSB sponsor). Do RSVP first – here’s info on that plus the lunch cost.
HYDROPLANE LAUNCH: As previewed here yesterday – the Schumacher Racing hydroplane that’s been getting refinished and painted at South Seattle Community College will be “launched” from the shop today, with owner (and ’60s-’70s driving legend) Billy Schumacher on hand. Public’s invited, 2 pm on the north side of the SSCC campus.
WEST SEATTLE ART WALK, JUNE EDITION: 37 places to visit, from Alki to Admiral to The Junction and beyond, during tonight’s monthly Art Walk, 6-9 pm. See the walking map/venue list here; the official Art Walk website with artist highlights is here. And it’s all FREE, including snacks/beverages at many stops along the way.
COMMUNITY SCHOOL OF WEST SEATTLE AUCTION: 6 pm at The Sanctuary at Admiral (42nd/Lander). This year, it’s raising money for the scholarship fund – the school says it provides $6,000 in scholarships every month.
DESIGN REVIEW FOR 9051 20TH SW: The Vesseliye project is now one building, not two – as explained in this WSB report last week – so it’s up for another Early Design Guidance meeting, 6:30 pm at Senior Center of West Seattle (California/Oregon).
SOUTH PARK BRIDGE UPDATE, IN PICTURES: This is not a community-meeting type of update, but rather a presentation of photos and info about how the bridge construction is going – 6:30 pm at the South Park Community Center (map and other details in the listing on our partner site thesouthparknews.com).
WEST SEATTLE HIGH SCHOOL CONCERT: Lots of great music from local schools lately, and tonight it’s West Seattle HS’s turn to show off for a crowd (details here). 7:30 pm, school theater.
P.S. Happy Flag Day!
From our newest partner site The South Park News, two stories of potential interest: Newest – the Seattle City Council has just been told that an area of annexation interest along the Duwamish River is pursuing annexation by Tukwila instead, so they may have to act fast. Here’s that story. … Meantime, this weekend included another milestone for the new Duwamish Rowing Club, whose organizer Mike Merta announced his hopes here on WSB a year and a half ago – see that story here.
(Photo by Hal Tangen)
As Seattle Public Utilities‘ massive new South Transfer Station has gone up just east of West Seattle, on the west side of South Park, it’s brought double takes and questions – especially when a paint problem caused its partial dismantling last year – and photos. Today, the city announced it’s finally about to open. Mayor McGinn and City Councilmembers Jean Godden and Richard Conlin are scheduled to dedicate it next Wednesday morning. From the media advisory, some factoids you might not know about it:
Features of the New South Transfer Station:
Reduced dust due to a misting system that can also be used to reduce odors.
A rainwater collection system that stores rain in a cistern to be used for washing.
Automated weigh-and-pay station for better efficiency, shorter lines and wait times.
Increased safety inside the station for customers and employees; a separate entrance for commercial collection trucks for added safety and efficiency.
Hydraulic compactors to optimize loads for efficiency.
High-quality architecture that meets the gold standard in environmental design.
Public art that features salvaged street signs and parts from the old South Park Bridge. Other artwork made from recycled plastic forks and spoons.
Niches for station staff to display “interesting items” that are found in the trash.
A viewing room for tour groups, individuals to safely see the activity on the sorting floor.
If you haven’t seen it yet, the station is on South Kenyon right alongside Highway 509.
A year and a half ago, we published Michael Merta‘s invitation to fellow rowers to join him in getting the sport going on the Duwamish River. This weekend, he shares this report – and photos – to announce that he and others have made it happen!
After a little over a year and a half of talking, planning, and fundraising, Duwamish Rowing Club has finally become a reality.
We have established a “boathouse” (really a 45-foot shipping container) in South Park near Duwamish Waterway Park. We have a double, a single, and a four-person rowing shell so far. We hope to buy another four in the coming weeks. Its a small start, but we are happy with what we have been able to accomplish.
Thanks so much to all the people who have helped us get this far, particularly the people of South Park. We look forward to growing this into a thriving club that will become an asset to the people in the Duwamish Valley, and we are happy to bring something very positive to the Duwamish River. Our mission is to develop a rowing club that is affordable, accessible, and open to everyone. If you would like to row or get involved, please contact Mike Merta at firstname.lastname@example.org.
10:31 PM SUNDAY: If you’re in eastern West Seattle, you might have noticed Seattle Fire crews rushing eastward. They’re headed for South Park, where smoke is coming from a 40-foot boat at a marina on the Duwamish River. We’re tracking it on our recently soft-launched site The South Park News.
MONDAY MORNING UPDATE: Here’s the update published on TSPN. West Seattle side note: Ladder 13′s firefighters were instrumental in getting the hose laid out to reach the fire – an unusually long way, 800 feet!
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