FOLLOWUP: Help ‘Team Awesome Avery’ raise $ tomorrow to cure childhood brain tumors

Earlier this month, we brought you the story of 11-year-old Avery Berg, who, in the same week she started middle school, also started radiation therapy for a rare type of brain tumor. She is battling it with good humor and her mom Kristie is sharing that humor with the world via an online chronicle, Step by Step with Awesome Avery. As mentioned in our first report, family and friends are raising money for pediatric-brain-tumor research via tomorrow’s Run of Hope. You still have time to donate to their effort. Kristie, meantime, shares what’s new with her daughter:

… This week Avery shaved her head. Most people think that only chemo makes you lose your hair, but when you radiate your whole brain, that does the trick as well. I desperately wanted to shave my head with her, but she asked me not to. “Mom, the last thing I want to see is you without hair” is actually what she said. I know shaving my head doesn’t really do much, but honestly, I just wanted to feel this loss with her. I don’t know about you, but my hair is absolutely a security blanket for me. I’ve cried on several occasions just from a bad cut!

I was surprised she didn’t have the same reaction as she had to me when she learned four of her friends were planning on shaving their heads too. Let’s just pause for a moment and remember these are middle school kids who all just started a new school! Two of them are girls with gorgeous, long, healthy hair that will take years to return. They did it during her nightly radiation treatment and in tandem with her own shave so she wouldn’t have to walk into school alone the next day. We should all be so lucky to have friends like this. Again, any expression of gratitude falls well short of how I feel. …

In the same post, she also marveled at the Run of Hope pledges for Team Awesome Avery surpassing $100,000. As of today, it’s jumped to $137,000+, yet that is still a drop in the proverbial bucket for an underfunded type of research, so their gratitude continues to grow for every new contribution … on behalf of Avery and other children who have been and will be affected until there’s a cure.

(Family photo, used with permission)

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PREPAREDNESS: Churches learning from Red Cross today; Disaster Relief Bike Trials tomorrow

It’s the last week of Preparedness Month and we have two related notes today:

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RED CROSS LESSONS: That trailer is parked by Hope Lutheran Church right now because of what’s happening inside: With the help of the West Seattle Emergency Communication Hubs, local churches that participate in the Westside Interfaith Network are learning from the Red Cross about “how a faith-based organization would set up a temporary shelter for local people while the bigger, official response to a big disaster gets organized.” While the Red Cross’s mission is to help, it’s a supporting role, and in case of disaster, churches and other community organizations will be on the front lines first.

DISASTER RELIEF BIKE TRIALS: When Seattle Summer Parkways gets going on Alki tomorrow at 11 am, that also will mark the start of the Disaster Relief Bicycle Trials. If an earthquake (among other things) strikes, roads might be impassable to larger vehicles, but bicycle riders can go where cars can’t, and so the Seattle DRT is geared toward giving riders some practice for the possibility of having to help someday. Four West Seattle Emergency Communication Hubs will be “activated” for the occasion, and the ride also will include activities such as “Zombie Apocalypse Survival.” (Who can resist that?) Ride if you can; cheer them on if you can’t, 11 am at the main stage area of SSP near 61st SW/Alki.

Concert Across America to End Gun Violence: Tibbetts UMC participating in West Seattle

This was announced long before five people were shot and killed last night in Burlington, just an hour north of here, but it’s suddenly and tragically all the more timely: Tibbetts United Methodist Church (WSB sponsor) in West Seattle is participating in tomorrow’s Concert Across America to End Gun Violence. Here’s the church’s announcement from early September:

On September 25th there is a nationwide series of live concerts brought together by social media. Please join us at Tibbetts United Methodist Church [3 pm Sunday] as we take part in this important event, and experience the power of music to heal and inspire in the midst of the terrible epidemic of gun violence in our country.

One of the featured musical groups at the concert at Tibbetts will be West Seattle’s own Christy McWilson and the West Seattle 2, along with Seattle Flash Choir, “Lady A,” Pacific Northwest Blues Diva, Tibbetts United Methodist Church Choir.

At the end of the concert, all performers and the audience will join in singing two specially-selected songs together.

Attendance is free, but we are asking for donations to support Everytown for Gun Safety. Please give if and what you can! For more information on the nationwide concert event, please (go here).

West Seattle Saturday: Trees, art, theater, dog swimming, music, Hate-Free Delridge…

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(Surfbird, photographed by Mark Wangerin)

From the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar and coverage archie, here’s how your weekend starts:

FIRST, A ROAD-WORK REMINDER: If you were planning to use the low bridge to get to/from downtown and vicinity this weekend, you might want to reconsider.

Now, highlights of what’s happening:

GIVE THE GIFT OF LIFE: Donate blood if you can, via the Bloodworks NW event today in The Junction, 9 am-3 pm (with an 11-noon break). Details in our calendar listing. (42nd SW/SW Alaska)

HIAWATHA TREE WALK: Explore the trees of historic Hiawatha Playfield/Community Center, 10 am-noon with Tree Ambassador Al. Free. Details in our calendar listing. (2700 California SW)

LAST CHANCE FOR YOUR DOG TO SWIM @ AHSTC: 11 am-1 pm, it’s the last session of this year’s “Dog Days” canine-only swimming at Arbor Heights Swim and Tennis Club, after the end of the human swimming season. Details in our calendar listing. (11003 31st SW)

CORNHOLE TOURNAMENT: 11 am registration, play starts at noon, at The Bridge in Morgan Junction – more info in our calendar listing. (6301 California SW)

OKTOBERFEST AT ELLIOTT BAY: Get in the Oktoberfest mood today at Elliott Bay Brewing in The Junction, with special Bavarian-themed dishes, plus live music 6-9 tonight. (4720 California SW)

LIBRARY ANNIVERSARY: If the South Park Library is your closest branch, you might want to go help celebrate its 10th anniversary today, noon-4 pm, including a tote-bag giveaway 1-3 pm. (8604 8th Ave. S.)

HATE-FREE DELRIDGE COMMUNITY GATHERING: All West Seattleites are welcome to the first community event organized by the new Hate-Free Delridge group. 4-8 pm at Youngstown Cultural Arts Center, free dinner at 5 pm, bring a dessert to share if you want to. Music, activities, and a chance to share your ideas for standing against hate. (Added) Here’s the full schedule:

4:00 Doors open, with fun activities for children and everyone
5:00 Free dinner; dessert potluck
5:00 to 7:00 Live music, by Delridge musicians
7:00 to 8:00 An open mic–for sharing ideas, stories, and musical talents

(4408 Delridge Way SW)

ARTIST RECEPTION AT TWILIGHT: West Seattle-based artist Kate Petty‘s paintings are on display at Twilight Gallery and Boutique in The Junction, and you can meet her at tonight’s reception, 5-8 pm. More info in our calendar listing. (4306 SW Alaska)

FIRST WEEKEND FOR ‘GHOSTS’: 7:30 pm curtain time tonight for ArtsWest‘s season-opening production. Get tickets here. (4711 California SW)

2 BANDS AT PARLIAMENT TAVERN: Starting at 9 pm; details in our calendar listing. 21+, no cover. (4210 SW Admiral Way)

3 BANDS AT SKYLARK: Starting at 9 pm, The Harper Conspiracy, General Vicinity, and Michele D’Amour and the Love Dealers. 21+; $7 cover. (3803 Delridge Way SW)

OF COURSE, THERE’S MORE … for the rest of today/tonight, plus tomorrow and way beyond. Browse it all via our complete calendar.

High-school football: Chief Sealth shut out by Garfield

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(WSB photos. Above, Sealth sophomore running back Donnie McMillan)

Tough night for Chief Sealth International High School last night in their second home game of the year at Southwest Athletic Complex. Garfield HS went home with a big win, 65-0. The night opened with high hopes for the home team, as the Sealth cheerleaders welcomed the players onto the field:

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Garfield started piling up the points relatively quickly, ending the first quarter with a 21-0 lead. Despite what was happening on the field, the two schools had an exuberant collaboration at halftime, with their bands joining in the stands to perform together:

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Another moment of shared appreciation happened before the game, when Sealth announcer Eddie Snead spoke warmly of Garfield, saying GHS had given him his first fulltime teaching job and CSIHS – where he teaches history – would surely be his last. As for football, Chief Sealth plays at home (SWAC) again next Friday night, 7 pm, vs. Ballard.

P.S. We covered Garfield’s pregame protest separately, here.

High-school football: Third win for West Seattle High School

West Seattle High School is 3-1 on the season after a Friday night victory against Ballard High School. Final score at Memorial Stadium downtown was WSHS 36, Ballard 20. The Wildcats are on the road again next Friday night (September 30th), playing Cleveland at Southeast Athletic Complex at 5 pm.

SATURDAY: Hate-Free Delridge hopes to see you at Youngstown

Two months after a racist, threatening note left for a Pigeon Point family shocked our area … seven weeks after some of that family’s neighbors joined forces to decide how to make a statement against hate … the resulting group‘s first community event is hours away, and this is a reminder that you are invited! We’ve been reporting on the plan for the first Hate-Free Delridge community gathering, and tomorrow – Saturday, September 24th – is the day. Doors open at 4 pm at Youngstown Cultural Arts Center (4408 Delridge Way SW), free dinner served at 5, music and activities promised for all ages until 8 pm, with the chance for you to “share your ideas for standing against hate.” HFD also has already announced its next event, an October 15th vigil.

High-school football: Garfield protests again at SWAC, to ‘work toward a better future together’

7:27 PM: For the second consecutive Friday night, Garfield High School is the visiting opponent at Southwest Athletic Complex in West Seattle. And again before the game, its team and cheerleaders (in foreground of second photo below) knelt during the pre-game anthem:

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No players from this week’s home team, Chief Sealth International High School, players joined in tonight (last week, seven West Seattle HS players did), though one person on the sidelines with them knelt:

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Garfield’s team issued a statement this week to clarify the intent of its protest, which the team says it will continue at each game this season. We obtained the statement through GHS:

Recently Garfield High School’s football team took a knee at an evening game. In an effort to clarify their position and better articulate the thought behind it, Garfield’s Football Team held an inclusive meeting … to put the team’s position into writing.

Garfield Football Team – We have increasingly heavy hearts over various issues that have been escalating in the media.

Many of us have been touched in some way in our own personal lives by racism, segregation and bias.

Through a series of open, honest and supportive conversations we have reached a team consensus and understanding.

We have unanimously decided to take a position as a team and work towards a better future together. We are going to demonstrate this decision through taking a knee at our games.

We are asking for the community and our leaders to step forward to meet with us and engage in honest dialogue. It is our hope that out of these potentially uncomfortable conversations positive, impactful change will be created.

At this time, the Garfield High School Football Team is especially concerned with the following:

1. Equality for all regardless of race, gender, class, social standing and/or sexual orientation – both in and out of the classroom as well as the community.

2. Increase of unity within the community. Changing the way the media portrays crime. White people are typically given justification while other minorities are seen as thugs, etc.

3. Academic equality for students. Certain schools offer programs/tracks that are not available at all schools or to all students within that school. Better opportunities for students who don’t have parental or financial support is needed. For example, not everyone can afford Advanced Placement (AP) testing fees and those who are unable to pay those fees, are often not encouraged to enroll into those programs. Additionally, the academic investment doesn’t always stay within the community.

4. Lack of adequate training for teachers to interact effectively with all students. Example, “Why is my passion mistaken for aggression?” “Why when I get an A on a test, does the teacher tell me, ‘Wow, I didn’t know you could pull that off.’”

5. Segregation through classism.

6. Getting others to see that institutional racism does exist in our community, city, state, etc.

In an effort to find solutions and create impactful change, Garfield Football is stepping forward as leaders within the Garfield Community and Seattle. As a first step towards finding solutions, Garfield Football will be pursuing the following:

1. Meetings with the local police leaders to share personal experiences and hear from officers and leaders on what their experience is and what changes we might be able to work together on.

2. Meetings with students in classes where diversity is lacking. Speaking at assemblies and with local youth groups and/or programs.

3. Meetings with school staff to include teachers and administration. Embarking on open dialogue about what triggers the negative experiences and interactions.

Garfield Football has set a course of action and we will see it through. Together United and Garfield Strong. Our Garfield Football mandate is TOP. Totally Optimizing Potential and we will demonstrate TOP both on the field and off.

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The game is under way now at SWAC and we will report on it separately after it’s over.

VIDEO: From representation to roads, @ Delridge Neighborhoods District Council

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By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

“The mayor got it wrong. Ms. Nyland has it wrong, too. … We represent more than who we are in this room.”

That declaration from Willard Brown of DNDA summarized what many of his fellow members of the Delridge Neighborhoods District Council said on Wednesday night, as a key part of the meeting focused on Mayor Ed Murray and Department of Neighborhoods director Kathy Nyland‘s intent to cut city support for the city’s 13 district councils.

The meeting’s other major component: A review of the five community proposals seeking Neighborhood Street Fund grant money, which DNDC members will be re-ranking now that SDOT has completed its assessment of the top-ranked proposals and what they’re likely to cost.

But first:

DISTRICT COUNCILS’ FUTURE: Chairing the meeting, Pigeon Point Neighborhood Council‘s Pete Spalding recapped how DNDC had hosted a citywide meeting at the Highland Park Improvement Club in July (WSB coverage, with video, here) to talk about the mayor’s “shocking” announcement days earlier about cutting off city support for district councils, as part of a reshaping of the city’s “engagement” policies.

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COUNTDOWN: 2 days to Seattle Summer Parkways on Alki

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The “no parking” signs are up and that’s the most visible reminder that the city’s “car-free day” Seattle Summer Parkways is happening along parts of Alki and Harbor Avenues on Sunday. While today – first full day of fall – feels anything but summery, the newest forecast predicts sunshine and afternoon temperatures in the 70s during the event.

What you need to know, one more time:

PARKING: “No water-side parking along Alki Ave SW from 63rd Ave SW to Don Armeni Boat Ramp from 8 am to 5 pm; parking will be allowed on the residential side of the street from 55th Ave SW to Don Armeni Boat Ramp,” per organizers.

DRIVING/RIDING/WALKING/RUNNING: Alki Avenue SW will be open for non-motorized vehicles only between 56th SW and 63rd SW, all lanes. Then from 56th east to Don Armeni Boat Ramp, the inland lane will remain open to motorized vehicles, while the water-side lane will be open to bicycling, walking, running, etc., only.

METRO: As of the moment we’re publishing this (2:43 pm), reroute information for Route 50 and the Water Taxi shuttle still has not been published on Metro‘s reroutes/alerts page. Kathy from West Seattle Bike Connections (an SSP participant) forwarded some partial information that SSP organizers obtained from Metro earlier in the week – noting a “temporary terminal” at 61st/Admiral – but we’re following up to see when the info will officially be posted.

ACTIVITIES/EVENTS: Orca Half (Marathon) leaves from Don Armeni Boat Ramp at 9:30 am. (If you’re already registered, you can pick up your packet at West Seattle Runner [2743 California SW; WSB sponsor)] until 6 pm today.) … The Disaster Relief Cargo Bike Trials leave from 61st and Alki at 11 am … CityScoop offers you free ice cream 1-3 pm near 61st and Alki, courtesy of the Department of Neighborhoods, which will have a few questions for you while you’re there … See the rest of the list here.

BACKSTORY: The city’s first “car-free day” event on Alki, in 2008, was in September, and followed a similar route. Sunny weather that day! Starting the next year, it was moved to late May, immediately after the West Seattle 5K, often partly cloudy and chilly. After six years, there was no event in 2015; then this year, the city confirmed in March that it was rebranding the event as Seattle Summer Parkways – the last of three SSP events this year – and moving it to late September.

HAPPENING NOW: Day of Caring volunteers @ West Seattle Food Bank

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Helping hands are busy right now at the West Seattle Food Bank and dozens of other locations around King County as part of the United Way-organized Day of Caring. At WSFB, 30 volunteers from Darigold – many of whom live in West Seattle – are painting the warehouse right now.

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Countywide, Day of Caring volunteers number more than 1,300, according to UWKC.

(Any others at work elsewhere in WS? We’d love to at least add a mention – editor@westseattleblog.com – thanks!)

ROAD-WORK ALERT: Avoid West Seattle ‘low bridge’ this weekend, SDOT advises

If you haven’t been paying close attention to the weekly reminders as the Spokane Street repaving (and more) project continues east of the low bridge – take note that for the second time this month, a weekend of reduced access to Harbor Island is ahead, starting late TONIGHT:

The Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) advises travelers that there will be multiple lane closures and detours in the vicinity of Harbor Island on SW Spokane St, Klickitat Ave SW, and SW Manning St starting Friday evening, September 23, through Monday morning, September 26. The closures are needed to perform pavement repairs and asphalt overlay of the existing roadways.

Drivers traveling between downtown and West Seattle are advised to take the West Seattle “High Bridge” as there will be detours and closures accessing the “Low Bridge.”

From 11 p.m. on Friday, September 23 until 5 a.m. on Monday, September 26, travelers can expect the following:

· Eastbound traffic on the Spokane Street Swing Bridge going to Harbor Island will be detoured past 11th Ave SW to E Marginal Way, onto SW Spokane St and access Harbor Island via Spokane Pl. Westbound off-ramps from SR99 and the Spokane St Viaduct to Harbor Island will remain open and provide direct access to the businesses and fueling operations on Harbor Island via Spokane Pl.

· Westbound traffic to West Seattle and Delridge Way via the “Low Bridge” will be detoured to Spokane Pl, onto Klickitat Ave SW to Harbor Island where drivers will be directed south and cross the swing bridge by turning left at the intersection of SW Spokane St and 11th Ave SW. Eastbound traffic coming into Seattle via the swing bridge can expect significant delays as both eastbound and westbound traffic will alternate in a single lane at times.

· Bike and pedestrian traffic are reminded to please stay on the West Seattle Bridge Trail in order to traverse the work zone as the pedestrian crossing remains closed at 11th Ave SW.

The asphalt overlay work is part of SDOT’s SW Spokane St Arterial Paving Project to repave SW Spokane St from SW Klickitat Way to East Marginal Way S. The project began in August and is expected to take up to three months to complete.

8 options for your West Seattle Friday night

Highlights for tonight from the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar (where you’ll find even more for today/tonight):

SPORTS NIGHT: “Family Connect” Sports Night at the West Seattle YMCA (WSB sponsor), 6-8 pm. Details here. (36th SW/SW Snoqualmie)

BETH O’CONNOR & FRIENDS: “Earthy singer-songwriter” at C & P Coffee Company (WSB sponsor), 7 pm. (5612 California SW)

HIGH-SCHOOL FOOTBALL: Chief Sealth International High School is home at Southwest Athletic Complex (2801 SW Thistle), 7 pm, vs. Garfield, which plans another anthem protestWest Seattle High School is on the road vs. Ballard at Memorial Stadium downtown (401 5th Ave. N.), 7:45 pm … And at West Seattle Stadium (4432 35th SW) tonight, it’s O’Dea hosting Bishop Blanchet, 7 pm.

INTIMATE BAROQUE: 7:30 pm, it’s the Kenyon Hall debut of classical ensemble Intimate Baroque, presenting “French Enchantments.” More info in our calendar listing. (7904 35th SW)

‘GHOSTS’: Second night of ArtsWest‘s season-opening play, “Ghosts” by Henrik Ibsen:

In that photo by Michael Brunk are Suzanne Bouchard in the role of Helene Alving and Noah Racey in the role of Pastor Manders. Curtain time is 7:30 pm; ticket info is here. (4711 California SW)

COSTUMED PUB CRAWL: As previewed here earlier this week, 7:30 pm, meet at West Seattle Office Junction (WSB sponsor) for a costumed pub crawl in Morgan Junction to celebrate Seattle Coworking Week. (6040 California SW)

BOYS CLUB, A TRIBUTE TO WEEN: 9 pm, Poggie Tavern in The Junction, no cover. (4717 California SW)

THREE BANDS AT PARLIAMENT: Pops Spoiler & His Deadbeats, Toxic Shellfish, Shower Power, described as “beer-soaked rock from Tacoma,” live at Parliament Tavern in The Admiral District, 9 pm, no cover. (4210 SW Admiral Way)

FOLLOWUP: Attic keepsakes find their way to family members

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Eight days after we published that photo from Stephanie, the “history mystery” is solved – items found in her attic are in the hands of relatives of the man in the photos, George Lee Hoke. She was getting leads via a Facebook group, commenters here, and people outside West Seattle after a TV station picked up the story. Earlier this week, we pointed her to this comment on the story, from Sandi … and today, Stephanie just sent word that the connection’s been made:

The two cigar boxes found in my attic have been given to George Lee Hoke’s son. Rollie is thrilled to get the photos! They are a treasure to him and his family. They are some of the sweetest, friendliest, most down to earth people I have ever met. The woman in the picture that I posted is the woman who lived in my house for over 50 years. She is Rollie’s mom, Detta, who passed away years ago.

Detta, Stephanie explains, was married to George Hoke, but after they divorced, she remarried, and both she and Rollie (Roland) took a different last name: “Roland knew very little of his father and was raised by his step-father. He eventually changed his last name back to Hoke because he knew that was his father’s name.” George Hoke had returned to his home state, Missouri, remarrying and starting another family. They were reached first in this quest but told Stephanie that she should find Roland, whose son, it turns out, lives “5 minutes” from her home in White Center. She adds:

The most touching part of the story was that these two cigar boxes were very well hidden in the attic. Roland said multiple times that he thought he cleaned the attic out really well after his mom had to move out because of her health. My husband had been up there a lot too, and only when we were ripping out ducting, did the boxes appear. Rollie and I both believe that those boxes were hidden up there by his mother for him to find later. When she was older, she must have forgotten about them. Rollie said he had so many questions that he wished he would have asked Detta, but just never did. The boxes are the closest connection he has with his dad. I am so thankful for all of the interest and help that I got with this endeavor.

TICKET TIME: Southwest Seattle Historical Society brunch gala, ‘Loving Our Landmarks’

The annual brunch benefit for the Southwest Seattle Historical Society is a month and a half away, and you have a week and a half to get tickets at the early-bird price. Here’s the SWSHS announcement:

Loving Our Landmarks” is the theme of the Southwest Seattle Historical Society’s 2016 Champagne Gala Brunch, and for good reason.

The Admiral Theater, the Alki Homestead, the “Birthplace of Seattle” Log House Museum — all are city landmarks that exist because of community support of the historical society. Plus, with further community help, the two jewels of the West Seattle Junction, the Campbell Building (Cupcake Royale), and the Hamm Building (Easy Street Records), are in the pipeline to become city landmarks.

The historical society will celebrate these landmarks and help keep the good work going at its 2016 Champagne Gala Brunch, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, November 5, at Salty’s on Alki, 1936 Harbor Ave. SW.

Tickets are on sale now. Click here to purchase them online. Or mail a check to the organization’s “Birthplace of Seattle” Log House Museum at 3003 61st Ave. SW. Or stop by the museum at that address to buy tickets in person.

The early-bird deadline to purchase tickets at $95 is less than two weeks away, Wednesday, Oct. 5. Tickets are $110 thereafter.

The Gala program promises to be the best ever, says Clay Eals, executive director.

For the Gala crowd, West Seattle’s Connie Thompson, 42-year veteran of KOMO-TV, will interview Jim Bonholzer, who worked the opening night of the Admiral Theater in 1942.

Also, the popular quiz panel, “Wait, Wait, West Seattle … Don’t Tell Me,” a take-off on the popular NPR show with a similar name, will return, with longtime KOMO radio and TV newsman Brian Calvert, a West Seattle resident, as host.

The five people who will make up Brian’s quiz panel are:

John Maynard, longtime radio personality (“Robin & Maynard”) and former West Seattle resident

Jack Miller, owner of Husky Deli in the West Seattle Junction

Tom Rasmussen, West Seattle resident and former three-term Seattle City Council member

Tracy Record, editor of West Seattle Blog

Lora Swift, director of the West Seattle Junction Association and former owner of Hotwire Online Coffeehouse

The 2016 slate of Live Auction items all will relate to the “Loving Our Landmarks” theme and are items that cannot be obtained anywhere else. The historical society will roll out details and videos about these items – including a few surprises – on its website and public announcements in the coming weeks before the event.

Also, the popular “Choose Your Cruise” Golden Ticket drawing is returning. For just $100, you can purchase a chance to win a seven-day Holland America Lines cruise for two to one of four destinations – your choice of Alaska, the Caribbean, Mexico or Canada/New England. A maximum of 100 tickets will be sold.

“Choose Your Cruise” Golden Tickets can be purchased before the Gala, in person only, at the historical society museum.

Updates will be posted continuously on this page of the SWSHS website.

Again this year, WSB is a media sponsor of the gala.

TRAFFIC/TRANSIT TODAY: Friday updates; weekend reminders

(SDOT MAP with travel times/video links; is the ‘low bridge’ closed? LOOK HERE)

(Click any view for a close-up; more cameras on the WSB Traffic page)

7:06 AM: Good morning and welcome to the first full day of fall. No incidents reported in or from West Seattle.

Weekend reminders:

SEATTLE SUMMER PARKWAYS ON ALKI THIS SUNDAY: The Seattle Summer Parkways event on Sunday will include parking/traffic changes all day on Harbor and Alki Avenues along with activities:

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More info here, including the schedule of what’s happening where and when along the route.

CITYWIDE WEEKEND ALERTS: Here’s the SDOT-compiled list of major events around the city this weekend.

Two advance closure alerts first published Thursday afternoon, in case you missed them:

OVERNIGHT BRIDGE CLOSURE: One week from tonight, to replace damaged barriers.

NEXT VIADUCT CLOSURE: Two weeks away, the next twice-yearly inspection/maintenance shutdown.

8:36 AM: Still incident-free.

9:54 AM: Crash on NB 99 at Lander.

PHOTOS: Welcoming autumn with Alice

Photos by Leda Costa for West Seattle Blog

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The first sunset of autumn brought about 40 people to West Seattle’s Solstice Park to watch with, and learn from, NASA Solar System Ambassador Alice Enevoldsen.

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Though a cloud bank got in the way of checking the alignment with the park’s equinox marker, the weather never gets in the way of Alice’s interactive lesson about the Earth’s position, and its relationship with the Sun, at the change of seasons:

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Special guest at tonight’s sunset watch … Ida, born to Alice and husband Jason five weeks ago:

Ida Enevoldsen, five weeks old, at her first sunset watch.

This was Alice’s 30th quarterly sunset watch, by the way. Watch here for word of her 31st, when winter solstice approaches in December.

YOU CAN HELP! Volunteer to survey Longfellow Creek salmon with Puget Soundkeeper Alliance

(WSB photo – Longfellow Creek during fall 2014 salmon survey)

Help survey coho salmon returning to Longfellow Creek in West Seattle! Puget Soundkeeper Alliance is looking again this fall for dedicated volunteers. Here’s their announcement:

During the salmon run each fall, a population of coho salmon enters the Duwamish River from Elliott Bay, and then swims up Longfellow Creek to spawn. As coho migrate through urbanized waterways like Longfellow, they encounter a chemical cocktail of toxic runoff from roadways and other paved surfaces. These chemicals severely disorient adult coho and result in “pre-spawn mortality” in many individuals, meaning the salmon die before reproducing.

Previous surveys conducted by the City of Seattle and NOAA on Longfellow Creek have found pre-spawn mortality rates of up to 90% amongst females, an alarmingly high statistic. Examining the number of salmon that return to Longfellow Creek every year and documenting the pre-spawn mortality rate are great indicators of the health of our local waterways. Data gathered from these surveys shared with NOAA, the City of Seattle, Department of Fish and Wildlife and King County.

Volunteers will attend an orientation meeting on Tuesday, October 4th from 6:30-8:30 pm at Chaco Canyon Organic Café in West Seattle.

Requirements/qualifications:

The nature of this work is geared toward adults only.

Surveying is a weekly commitment that takes approximately 1 hour to complete. The salmon run begins in mid-October and finishes mid-December, during which there will be a survey every day. Volunteers will be divided into teams of 2-3 people and assigned a weekday to conduct their survey.

We’re looking for adventurous volunteers! Surveying requires handling fish carcasses found in the creek (with gloves) and dissecting the female salmon to check for eggs.

Volunteers should be in good physical condition. Surveying in Longfellow Creek requires climbing up and down steep muddy embankments and wading through shallow water on uneven terrain.

Surveying is conducted in varying weather conditions. If conditions are dangerous (e.g. a downpour), we will cancel on that day. Otherwise, we survey rain or shine.

Volunteers will be provided with surveying kits and waders (unless you have your own pair). Data collected during the survey will be uploaded by the volunteers into Puget Soundkeeper’s database.

Salmon surveys are a great way to observe one of nature’s most amazing migrations and experience scientific field work. The data we collect from these surveys help us understand the effects of toxic runoff on one of the Pacific Northwest’s most iconic species and determine the best methods to protect them in the future!

Qustions? kerry@pugetsoundkeeper.org – and when you’re ready to register, go here.

SATURDAY: K-8 students invited to Chief Sealth Mini Cheer Camp

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(Chief Sealth cheerleaders @ SWAC on September 2nd)

Students in kindergarten through 8th grade are invited to spend this Saturday (September 24th) at Chief Sealth International High School Cheer Camp, 11 am-3 pm:

You will learn a dance, basic arm motions, some Chief Sealth cheers, team bonding games, jumps, and stunts. You will have the opportunity to perform your dance with the Chief Sealth Cheerleaders during their home game (Sealth vs. Ballard) halftime show on September 30th at the SWAC. Come join us for the fun! …

The cost of the camp is $40 cash or check payable to “Chief Sealth Cheerleading” – it includes admission to the (Sept. 30) game and a T-shirt to wear for your performance!

Registration is due tomorrow (Friday) – you can e-mail Sealth cheer coach Tahreana Turner for a registration form – coachtahreanacsihs@gmail.com – then on Saturday, the cheerleaders will meet campers at the gym door (2600 SW Thistle)!

Speed limits, paid parking, street cuts @ City Council Transportation Committee

(Seattle Channel video from Tuesday’s Transportation and Sustainability Committee meeting)

Next Monday, the full Seattle City Council is scheduled to consider the SDOT speed-limit-reduction proposal, primarily proposing that all non-arterial roads to have a speed limit of 20 mph. First word of the proposal a week and a half ago sparked much discussion; it was one of three major topics at this week’s meeting of the council’s Sustainability and Transportation Committee.

SPEED LIMITS: As you can see in the video above (starting one hour, 29 minutes in), the SDOT presenters stressed that they believe lower speed limits will reduce pedestrian deaths and injuries; they presented this slide deck to underscore that.

As for what’s planned for other arterials, SDOT reps said this specific bill does not include any speed-limit changes for arterials outside downtown, but noted that others remain under review, especially the ones with the most crashes. They also pointed out that the city has reduced speed limits relatively recently on four arterials around the city, two of them in West Seattle (Fauntleroy Way SW last February, and 35th Avenue SW). And they said they’re reviewing some areas – many in West Seattle (though specific roads weren’t mentioned) – where they need to add signage reminding people of current speed limits.

The speed-limit proposal needs a majority vote at Monday afternoon’s full-council meeting. No one opposed it at the committee meeting.

PARKING BENEFIT DISTRICTS: While this item did not directly involve West Seattle, some information of interest emerged – particularly, the revelation that SDOT expects to review West Seattle Junction on-street parking again in 2018. That would be nine years after the last full review in 2009, which included SDOT‘s announcement that paid on-street parking did NOT seem to be warranted in The Junction. The review did result in some mostly minor changes, including time limits.

The committee briefing was about a proposal to look at Parking Benefit Districts – in which revenue from paid on-street parking would go back into the geographic districts where the parking was located, theoretically to give community members an incentive to support the paid parking. Specifically, there was a proposal for a pilot PBD in Capitol Hill. SDOT recommended against it, saying it prefers to stick with what it’s been doing, including “time-of-day” variable pricing in some areas and potentially extending paid parking later into the night in some parts of the city. The latest online update from our area’s Councilmember Lisa Herbold (who was not at Tuesday’s meeting of the committee, for which she is an alternate member) has more details on SDOT’s rationale for opposing PBDs.

Back to the meeting – Councilmembers Rob Johnson and Mike O’Brien had a notable exchange involving constituents’ concerns about parking. O’Brien said he hears most often about new development projects without offstreet parking and said he wasn’t sure that PBDs would have any effect on those concerns. And separate from that, West Seattle’s “remarkable growth and increase in density” was mentioned in passing a few times during the discussion.

CUTTING UP STREETS: This briefing got a little technical but here’s what you really need to know: The city is tightening up the rules for when and why streets can be cut into, and how long the cutters get before they have to restore the pavement. With the Move Seattle Levy funding new pavement, SDOT reps explained, “One of the things we wanted to avoid were a bunch of asphalt cuts turning (newly repaved) streets into Swiss cheese.” You can read here what they are working on, in addition to listening to the discussion in the meeting video (1 hour, 9 minutes in).

ALASKAN WAY VIADUCT CLOSURE: Next one set for October 8-9

Another road-closure alert: The weekly “lookahead” published today by SDOT includes the news that the next twice-yearly inspection/maintenance closure of the Alaskan Way Viaduct is set for the weekend of October 8-9, 6 am-6 pm each day. The most recent shutdowns have lasted just one day, with the second “reserve” day going unused; we’ll be checking with WSDOT to see what they can tell us in advance.

P.S. WSDOT continues to update its tunnel-progress page on Thursdays and Mondays; as of today, the machine has traveled 4,362 feet of the 9,270-foot distance.

BRIDGE CLOSURE: SDOT plans one-night closure of West Seattle Bridge to replace jersey barriers

(September 10th photo contributed by Mark)

Remember that crash two weeks ago? It’s just one of several in recent months that have damaged jersey barriers on the West Seattle Bridge. Now, SDOT has announced an overnight closure, eight days away, for replacements:

The Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) advises travelers that maintenance crews need to replace damaged jersey barriers in the median of the West Seattle Bridge, requiring a full closure of the bridge on Saturday, October 1, during the overnight and morning hours. Damage to these barriers has been caused by several recent vehicle collisions that have struck the median. An SDOT inspection of all of the jersey barriers on the West Seattle Bridge identified 18 that are in need of replacement.

From 11:59 p.m. on Friday night, September 30 to 9 a.m. on Saturday morning, October 1, travelers can expect the following:

· The West Seattle Bridge (WSB) will be closed to through traffic in both directions between 35th Ave SW and the Harbor Avenue/Avalon Way exit.

· Crews will begin closing lanes at 11:30 p.m. Friday with full closure by midnight.

· A detour will be in place for eastbound and westbound travelers on the WSB.

· The detour for eastbound traffic is via SW Avalon Way, SW Spokane St and back onto the WSB.

· The detour for westbound traffic is via the Harbor Avenue/Avalon Way exit to SW Avalon Way to Fauntleroy Way SW.

· Crews will remove and replace 18 damaged jersey barriers.

· Crews will check and adjust any existing barriers that may have moved, but do not need immediate replacement.

· The West Seattle Bridge will be reopened by 9 a.m. on Saturday morning, October 1.

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