West Seattle, Washington
On Tuesday night, the West Seattle Block Watch Captains Network meets at the Southwest Precinct for the final time before summer break. The 6:30 pm meeting is another chance to hear about crime trends and bring up community concerns with local police. And this month’s special guest, as just announced by WSBWCN co-leaders Karen Berge and Deborah Greer, will talk about the impending return of SPD’s Community Service Officer program:
City Council set aside funding to re-implement the Community Service Officer program in 2018. Our guest speaker will be Angela Socci from the Finance and Planning Section of the Seattle Police Department. She’ll talk about the plans for reinventing the CSO program. They are in the early stages of the program development process, so we have an opportunity to offer feedback. How would you like to see the new program take shape?
You don’t have to be a Block Watch captain – or even a Block Watch member – to be there; all are welcome. The precinct is at 2300 SW Webster (east of Home Depot) and the meeting room is right off the public parking area by the entrance.
That short video by Dina Johnson tells the story of how supporters are hoping to save the Reading Partners one-on-one-tutoring program at Highland Park Elementary. We first mentioned it here last weekend; their next event is a book swap tomorrow (Sunday, June 25th) afternoon at Highland Park Improvement Club (1116 SW Holden). It’s free – bring books, for kids and/or adults! – and also a chance to find out more about the program and how volunteers are trying to save it. Their main fundraiser is a GoFundMe page that has now passed $6,000 but has a long way to go to the $30,000 needed by July 15th to keep the program from being dropped at HPES.
It’s more than a hobby … amateur radio is vital to emergency preparedness in our area and many others, too. So – both to practice their skills and to offer a public view into how amateur radio works – International Field Day is under way right now, with local operators gathered in the south field on the South Seattle College (6000 16th SW; WSB sponsor) campus on Puget Ridge through about 11 am Sunday.
You are invited to stop by any time before then (kids welcome too!) to see and hear how it works. While we were there, solar-power demonstrations were under way:
Just look for the antennas rigged in the field, and the tents nearby:
Bring your own kite or buy one at the garden, which is on the north side of South Seattle College (6000 16th SW; WSB sponsor). This is the festival’s fifth year; suggested donation for entry is $3; youth 17 and under are free.
Besides kite-flying, you’ll see demonstrations and entertainment; the latter is highlighted by the International Wudang Internal Martial Arts Academy, scheduled to perform 3-3:30 pm.
12:12 PM: That was the view looking north across the street from Me-Kwa-Mooks a short time ago, as today’s low tide ebbed to a very, very low -3.6 feet. Lots of people out exploring the shore; if you weren’t able to join them, maybe tomorrow? Another -3.6 low tide is expected Sunday at 12:25 pm.
ADDED 3:28 PM: Thanks to Peter Commons for sharing a few views from shore level:
We appreciate photos – firstname.lastname@example.org if it’s not breaking news, text 206-293-6302 if it is!
Lots of ways to enjoy the warm sunshine during this first weekend of summer!
(added) PACIFIC NW JUNIOR OLYMPIC TRACK AND FIELD CHAMPIONSHIPS: 2nd of 3 days at Southwest Athletic Complex, with competition scheduled 8:30 am-4:20 pm. Scroll down this form for the schedule. (2801 SW Thistle)
MORGAN JUNCTION LITTER CLEANUP: Meet at 9 am by the ATM in the New Teriyaki & Wok/Domino’s parking lot. All ages welcome. Cleanup scheduled to continue until 10:30 am. (6540 California SW)
WEST DUWAMISH GREENBELT HIKE: 9 am guided hike – details here. Meet in Riverview parking lot. (12th SW/SW Myrtle)
WEST SEATTLE LINUX USERS’ GROUP: 9 am-10:30 am, every-two-weeks meetup at Fauntleroy YMCA. (9140 California SW)
FREE TAI CHI ON ALKI: 9 am, by Alki Statue of Liberty Plaza. All welcome. Taught by Lao-Shi Caylen Storm. (61st SW/Alki SW)
CLEAN UP ALKI WITH SEAL SITTERS: 9:30 am-noon, it’s the “Sentinels of the Sound” cleanup to help protect wildlife from beach litter. Meet at Alki Statue of Liberty Plaza. (61st SW/Alki SW)
LOWER FAUNTLEROY TREE WALK: Join Tree Ambassador Al Rouyer, 10 am-noon. Meet at the Fauntleroy Creek fish-ladder overlook. Details here. (Upper Fauntleroy Way/SW Director)
LINCOLN PARK WADING POOL OPENS: 11 am-8 pm, first day of the season for West Seattle’s 7-day-a-week (provided temps are 70+) wading pool, by the play area in north upper Lincoln Park. (8011 Fauntleroy Way SW)
(added) HIGHLAND PARK SPRAYPARK OPENS: Seattle Parks just confirmed this morning that Highland Park Spraypark WILL open today as announced, though not at 100 percent, and although work at the park around it isn’t entirely done yet. 11 am-8 pm. (1100 SW Cloverdale)
FIELD DAY: At the south end of the South Seattle College (WSB sponsor) campus, it’s all about amateur (ham) radio for 24 hours:
Two local groups — the Seattle Auxiliary Communications Service, and the Puget Sound Repeater Group — will be joining up again this year and conducting operations from 11 AM Saturday June 24 continuously through 11 AM Sunday June 25. The public is invited to come see the event, learn about amateur radio and emergency communications, and even try their hand at making contact with another radio operator — perhaps in a remote part of the world!
Just stop by! (6000 16th SW)
LOW-LOW TIDE: At 11:38 am, the tide bottoms out at an EXTREMELY low point: -3.6 feet. Seattle Aquarium volunteer beach naturalists will be at Constellation and Lincoln Parks 10 am-2 pm if you have questions. (Look for the signs)
COLMAN POOL SEASON CONTINUES: Noon to 7 pm, the outdoor, heated saltwater pool on the shore at Lincoln Park is open. Here’s the schedule. (Walk or bike from either end of the park)
NO ALKI LIGHTHOUSE TOURS TODAY: Saturday tours are canceled again this week, but you’ll be able to tour tomorrow.
KITE FESTIVAL: The Seattle Chinese Garden at the north end of the South Seattle College (WSB sponsor) campus invites you to today’s annual Kite Festival, 2-6 pm. Bring your own kite or buy one there. 3 pm martial-arts performance. Suggested admission donation $3 for adults, youth free. Details here. (6000 16th SW)
URBAN HOMESTEAD FOUNDATION BLOCK PARTY: 3-5 pm at the future Dakota Homestead property, the Urban Homestead Foundation invites you to “bring a dish to share, meet your neighbors and learn more about the exciting progress our community is making in purchasing this land. We’ll have activities for kids and urban agriculture information for adults.” (50th SW/SW Dakota)
LIVE MUSIC AT SALTY’S: Harrison B performs at Salty’s on Alki (WSB sponsor), 5-9 pm. (1936 Harbor SW)
LIVE MUSIC AT WHISKY WEST: Triangular Jazztet, 9-11 pm at Whisky West, no cover. 21+. (6451 California SW)
LIVE MUSIC AT PARLIAMENT TAVERN: “A psychedelic liquid light show” with Infinite Flux, Sower, & Sabertooth at Parliament Tavern, 9 pm. $8 cover. 21+. (4210 SW Admiral Way)
LIVE MUSIC AT THE SKYLARK: Skullbot, Green River Thrillers, and The Grindylow, 9 pm. $7 cover. 21+. (3803 Delridge Way SW)
WITH ALL THAT, THERE’S *STILL* MORE … check our complete-calendar page.
Just yesterday, we reported on the case of the “crumbling cul-de-sac,” with pavement problems at SW Portland Court including a hole that neighbors said they’d been trying to get filled for three years. They sent a note to a list including City Councilmember Lisa Herbold and WSB on Wednesday; Thursday morning, we stopped by to talk with them and get a look; later Thursday, the councilmember referred their case to SDOT director Scott Kubly. Then this morning, a crew showed up to fill the hole, neighbors Brian and Andy (who shared the top photo) report. (Don’t know if it was the same crew, but we also saw SDOT workers filling a hole on California SW in south Morgan Junction this morning.)
Thanks to David for the photo of the all-dad band DAD, performing right now on 48th Avenue SW west of The Junction. It’s the second year that they’ve closed the street (with permits) for an end-of-school-year party. They’re scheduled to play until about 10 pm, and you’re welcome to go join the party. They’re collecting donations for the PTA at West Seattle’s most-populous elementary, Genesee Hill.
More end-of-school year sports news: West Seattle High School has a new girls-soccer coach. We met Todd Veenhuizen at his meeting for prospective players after school on Thursday.
He shared his expectations – including positive attitudes – as they look ahead to tryouts in about two months. And he told them about his background, including serving as an assistant coach for women at UW and Seattle University. The new coach says he believes the team has a solid core to build on, losing only two players to graduation (one of whom happens to be his daughter Sara Veenhuizen). First league game in the fall, by the way, will be against crosstown rivals Chief Sealth International High School.
The photo is courtesy of David Hutchinson, who explains that it shows “‘Wonder‘, a yearling harbor seal (last year’s pup) that has been using Alki-area beaches recently – watched over by Seal Sitters. Taken as usual from a distance with a telephoto lens.” Rather than saving the photo for tomorrow’s daily lineup, we’re sharing it tonight for two reasons:
-With low-low tides continuing through Monday, more people are out on the beaches, and might encounter marine mammals. If you see a seal or sea lion on the beach, or a marine mammal that appears to be in trouble, the Seal Sitters Marine Mammal Stranding Network hotline is 206-905-SEAL.
-Tomorrow morning, Seal Sitters and friends will be out cleaning up Alki, and it’s not too late for you to RSVP to be part of it. They’re gathering at Alki Statue of Liberty Plaza (61st SW/Alki SW) at 9:30 am and cleaning until noon.
4:41 PM: Another “full response” for a possible house fire, this time in the 8800 block of 35th SW.
4:52 PM: Firefighters tell us this was a small porch fire and it’s out. No one was home; they don’t yet know how this started.
Earlier this week, a reader report about a frightening confrontation in Lincoln Park sparked a lot of discussion here. Hours later, we asked the Southwest Precinct‘s second-in-command, Lt. Ron Smith, about patrol plans there, and he indicated they would be stepped up now that Alki has calmed down. The next day, we asked City Councilmember Lisa Herbold if Lincoln Park issues were on her radar; she said she’d been hearing about the camper concerns and letting constituents know how to report them. Today, this is just in from WSB reader Chuck, who took his concerns to both Herbold and police – he received this from SW Precinct commander Capt. Pierre Davis:
Thank you for taking the time to convey your concerns regarding the homeless/camping issues in Lincoln Park and in other greenbelt areas of West Seattle. To date, our Community Policing Teams, The Southwest Bicycle Patrol squad and our district officers have conducted several patrols and social contacts with various individuals in the aforementioned areas.
This morning our officers along with representatives from the Seattle Parks Department conducted a sweep of Lincoln Park and removed several encampments and issued park exclusion notices to the involved subjects. This information was also passed along to our Navigation Team, who will assist us with further follow-up on the Park’s homeless issue.
This matches a bit of scanner discussion we heard this morning about police sweeping a park area (via a frequency that covers both West and South Seattle, and no mention of addresses, so we couldn’t tell which park).
2:05 PM: Seattle Fire is sending a “full response” to check out a potential house fire in the 7700 block of 20th SW [map]. Updates to come.
2:09 PM: First unit on scene reports via SFD radio that this appears to be a kitchen fire, and that as far as they know, everyone’s safely out of the house. They’re calling for a ventilation fan.
2:13 PM: The call is being downgraded and most of the responding units are being dismissed.
2:26 PM: SFD Lt. Harold Webb tells us at the scene that the fire extended to the kitchen cabinets but did not damage the structure, and it’s out now. Nobody hurt. The family should be able to go back into their house before too long.
An update of sorts in the saga of the missing mailbox outside the US Post Office in The Junction, last seen in mid-January:
Reader Diana shared with us the response she got from a complaint made to USPS Customer Service, and the news isn’t good. First, she said, she met with a supervisor at the Westwood post office last Monday. She was referred to the consumer complaint hotline (253-214-1800), through which she filed a complaint on Tuesday. Then on Wednesday, Diana received a phone call from USPS, and quotes them as telling her:
We are very aware of the problem and there have been a lot of complaints. A replacement was requested 6 months ago. We followed up with the manufacturer and it may be several more months before we receive a replacement. Unfortunately there is nothing we can do.
USPS had indeed told us in January that they’d ordered a replacement. So what’s the problem with the manufacturer? Don’t know, yet; don’t even know who the manufacturer is, despite spending some research time trying to find out.
P.S. Diana adds, “Just a note from me…please be courteous to the USPS employees. They are really out of the loop on this issue and their jobs seem pretty stressful as our city and community changes.”
Students at Highland Park Elementary are getting an early start on beating the heat. Today – second-to-last day of school – is Field Day, and PE teacher Chellie LaFayette tells us that means bonus outdoor fun.
The younger students’ Field Day fun was earlier this morning, and the older kids will be out this afternoon.
P.S. Highland Park kids work hard in the classroom too, but as reported here last weekend, are facing the loss of a reading-tutor program – this Sunday brings a chance for you to help.
Summer is really here! From the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar:
LOW-LOW TIDE WITH BEACH NATURALISTS: Until 1 pm, Seattle Aquarium volunteer beach naturalists are back at Lincoln and Constellation Parks to assist while you explore at a very low tide: -3.2 feet at 10:52 am.
BLOOD DRIVE: Peace Lutheran Church in Gatewood is hosting a blood drive today, 1-7 pm, with a break 3-4 pm. If you don’t have an appointment, check to see if walk-up spots are available. (39th SW/SW Thistle)
COUNCILMEMBER HERBOLD’S DISTRICT OFFICE HOURS: 2-5:30 pm today, City Councilmember Lisa Herbold is at the South Park Community Center for in-district office hours – drop-ins welcome. (8319 8th Ave. S.)
WEST SEATTLE SUMMER SHOWDOWN ’17: High-school boys’ basketball at West Seattle High School, all weekend, starting at 4:30 pm today – local team Seattle Lutheran plays Puyallup at 7:30 pm. (3000 California SW)
THE ALOHA SHREDDERS: Father and son duo perform at C & P Coffee Company (WSB sponsor), 7-9 pm. (5612 California SW)
(updated) ‘RAW, RUSTIC VERSE’: Live music at Parliament Tavern with The Spoils, and The Demon Rind, 9 pm. $5 cover. 21+. (4210 SW Admiral Way)
And a note in case you hear them:
FIREWORKS TONIGHT … after the Mariners’ game at Safeco Field. Sometimes the sound carries across the bay.
John e-mailed a few minutes ago to report a sighting of humpback whales headed south, south of Alki Point. Let us know if you see them!
The weather will be beautiful … might as well beautify the neighborhood too. Tomorrow morning (Saturday, June 24th), you’re invited to join the next volunteer community cleanup in Morgan Junction, organized by Jill Boone. Meet by the ATM on the east side of California SW in the Teriyaki & Wok/Domino’s/gas-station lot for “a quick cleanup of California Ave and the Fauntleroy intersection and bus stops.” 9 am-10:30 am. The city’s providing litter grabbers and bags; Jill adds, “We also have a few kiddie grabbers this time and hopefully some small vests. Kids of all ages are welcome and leashed, friendly dogs. :) I will do a short safety talk at 9 AM so try to be on time. You might want to bring hand sanitizer and gloves too.” RSVP to email@example.com with how many adults and how many kids will participate.
6:59 AM: The first weekend of summer is almost here. No incidents in/from our area so far.
SCHOOL’S ALMOST OUT: Today is the final full day of school for Seattle Public Schools; Monday is the last day of classes, with one-hour early dismissal.
WEEKEND EVENTS: Here’s the SDOT roundup of what’s happening around the city.
FERRY SCHEDULE CHANGE: Washington State Ferries‘ summer schedule starts Sunday.
WEATHER ADVISORY: You’ve heard it’s going to get hot this weekend. The National Weather Service has issued a heat advisory for noon Saturday to 9 pm Sunday – with highs potentially into the 90s.
Zach Jones shares the photos and a report about two championships for West Seattle Baseball All-Star teams last weekend. First, their 8U tournament at the Pee Wee Fields below Riverview:
We had 16 teams from around the area (Seattle, Silverdale, Bellevue, Maple Valley, Renton, etc) in our 8U Hardball Classic. It’s one of the biggest 8U tournaments around. The West Seattle All Stars took the championship in a great win over the Rain City Royals (Maple Valley). 12-4 was the final.
Players on the team are: Avery, Emery, Kingsley, Micah, Jackson, Nolan, Julian, Max, Will, Kaipo, Ivan, and Tate. Coaches: Jorge, Dave, Zach (me).
In addition, we held a mini-tournament Sunday for the 7U teams that entered. Our own West Seattle 7U All Stars won the championship against Puget Sound Powerhouse.
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
We’re covering all the West Seattle forums, including the latest one presented today by the West Seattle Democratic Women, during their monthly meeting in the WS Golf Course banquet room.
First, if you’d like to watch/listen, here’s our unedited video of the entire hour-and-a-third forum featuring six candidates:
Ahead, text highlights of what they were asked and how they replied, as voting time approaches:
6:17 PM: If you haven’t headed out for the West Seattle Transportation Coalition‘s light-rail-routing workshop at The Hall at Fauntleroy (9140 California SW) – you’re not too late. While the official start time was 6 pm, people are still milling about at tables with maps, talking about possibilities. Very informal – just drop in; there’ll be a presentation at some point, but otherwise, it’s not a major “sit down and listen” type event, definitely meant to be interactive. The goal: Gather community thoughts about station siting, routing, etc., before Sound Transit officially launches its work on the West Seattle project this fall – 13 years before the service is scheduled to start. Sound Transit reps are here, by the way, if you have questions for them, but this is a community-led meeting, so they’re here to observe and support rather than to present. We’ll be updating as the night goes.
6:25 PM: WSTC chair Michael Taylor-Judd has given the workshop intro, reminding people that this is a community group, not the ultimate decisionmakers. He’s one of two speakers before everybody will head to breakout tables to talk about routing and stations – the Sound Transit 3 ballot measure proposed three West Seattle lines for the 2030 spur from SODO. Here’s a ST document that WSTC provided, from 2016, showing “representational alignment” – sort of a draft version of where the stations might be:
There’s one table per station, as well as one for “the kitchen sink,” any related issues you want to bring up. He says WSTC will “collect and collate” notes made on maps at the tables, as well as whatever people write on paper comment forms that are available here. It’ll be provided to Sound Transit and SDOT as well as used for guidance in what WSTC does in the months and years ahead.
Taylor-Judd says Metro is represented here too, as the Sound Transit West Seattle line will affect future bus routes/service, too. He wraps his introduction by noting that WSTC is a volunteer community group (launched almost four years ago, originally the WS Transit Coalition) that doesn’t collect dues, so he’s circulating a basket if anyone wants to contribute (totally voluntary) toward the costs of renting this room and related expenses.
6:33 PM: He’s followed by former Transportation Coalition board member Tom Linde, who’s giving a sort of Light Rail 101 presentation – not what it is so much as how it’s planned.
This early stage of the West Seattle planning is “generating options,” e.g. the “representational alignment” shown in the embedded document above (or see it here, PDF). “Somewhere along the line there’ll be a preferred alignment generated by Sound Transit,” Linde continues. Options include at grade (surface), elevated, subway (underground), and Linde is detailing the pros/cons of each. (Since light rail has to cross the Duwamish, a separate bridge is expected, so far.)
After an explanation of those three routing possibilities, Linde walked through “what we know now” – the “representational alignment” (very early-stage) – likely an elevated station at the north end of Delridge, with the train continuing down Delridge, turning toward Genesee, up and across Avalon, then bending toward Fauntleroy, with an elevated station somewhere around 35th/Avalon; the train would continue along Fauntleroy, turning westward onto Alaska, and ending with an elevated station in The Junction. And he’s advising people to head on over to the tables and think about the challenges and opportunities: “As you ponder what (it) would look like – it’s a substantial change to our environment, if it ends up as something elevated or at grade – it will affect the functionality of West Seattle for 100 years.” He exhorts everyone to “build your own argument for your idea” and then head over.
In Q/A, someone brings up the Fauntleroy Boulevard project – “doesn’t make sense … to spend $14, $15 million and then tear it up again.” (That’s been brought up multiple times at discussions of light rail and of the Fauntleroy project, like this one last month at the West Seattle Chamber of Commerce meeting.) At that point, City Councilmember Lisa Herbold says she has been trying for more than a month to get that question answered; she was told the mayor and ST had a meeting today and she is hoping for an answer soon.
6:58 PM: Q&A continues. Marci Carpenter, a West Seattleite who’s on the city’s Transit Advisory Board, has just come forward to say she’s here to listen and observe tonight. The board meets 6 pm 4th Wednesdays at City Hall. Linde fields one last question – what do stations look and sound like? announcements? noise? – he said he spent hours at the Angle Lake ST station in recent weeks and the trains are quiet, “surprisingly pleasant experience.” Just after 7 pm, everyone is off to breakout tables; we will circulate to listen in. (About 50 people are here.)
7:42 PM: Seen at the tables:
What’s immediately above is a representation of what elevated track heading through The Junction might be like. Meantime, here’s our short walkthrough of the table zone:
Soon, everyone will regroup to “report out” on highlights from the tables.
8:05 PM: Those reports begin. WSTC’s Deb Barker was at the Junction station table. “A lot of talk about undergrounding,” she said. “The other themes that were voiced were a proposal for the above-ground seems to be ruining/impacting different things that you might not have thought out before – shadows, driving under these structures in a very tight area …”
WSTC’s Larry Wymer spoke for the 35th/Avalon table. He said there were many concerns about the coordination of the Fauntleroy Boulevard project and the possibility that light rail will go down Fauntleroy, more Sound Transit/SDOT coordination, “maybe push off the Fauntleroy improvement project until we have a better handle on that.” An elevated station like Angle Lake could be 400 feet long, Sound Transit says, they noted. Also: Maybe look at using part of the golf course, or at least tunneling beneath that area. And: This is a major entrance/exit to/from West Seattle- what will the construction timing be like and how will access be handled? Someone also wondered if the Alki Lumber site might be appropriate for a station.
The Delridge table was represented by Josh, who said people are concerned about “crossing over neighborhoods and houses, and if we can minimize that at all, it’s great.” They also talked about going over the golf course, and they wondered why it diverges from the existing bridge and why an established path isn’t what would be followed. Also, if a new bridge is to be built over the Duwamish, what about building it sooner and opening it to bus rapid transit even before light rail is ready?
Speaking for the “bird’s-eye view” table, Peter said concerns included the siting of the Avalon station where homes are now, the possibility that the track would be 150 feet in the air, and what about consolidating three stations into two stations and dropping the Avalon plan? Maybe a future station could be by West Seattle Stadium. And people were asking what happens south of The Junction.
Finally, the “kitchen sink” table: WSTC vice chair Marty Westerman said “there’s a lot of concern about construction, where are commuters going to park … During construction, there’s concern about using Alaska for bike and vehicle traffic … Second concern, eminent domain or homeowners being priced out … Third, this is the wrong technology, it will be obsolete in relatively short order … and, a lot of concern about why don’t the agencies responsible for planning work together?”
NEXT STEPS: WSTC will aggregate the comments “into some kind of functional format,” said Linde. It’ll go to Sound Transit, to Metro, to City Councilmember Herbold. And at 8:17 pm, the event concluded.