month : 10/2007 278 results

West Seattle Gas Price Watch: Suddenly way pumped-up


As the photo montage above shows … many WS stations have suddenly jumped up past 3 bucks a gallon for regular unleaded. (Here’s why.) Fauntleroy/Alaska Shell, for example, has had at least two price hikes in the past day — one to $3-plus by late last night, then up to $3.12 as of first thing this morning. Delridge Arco still has the lowest price but as the photos below show, as of about an hour ago, its signs don’t really agree on what the price actually is (we didn’t stop to check the pumps):


West Seattle Wind Watch: Looks like tomorrow afternoon

From the link we mentioned earlier this morning, where National Weather Service meteorologists elaborate at least twice daily on what they see heading this way, the newest “forecast discussion” is now published, including this excerpt, referring to tomorrow (Thursday): “FOR THE PUGET SOUND AREA…APPEARS THAT THE STRONGEST WINDS WILL OCCUR DURING THE LATE AFTERNOON AND EARLY EVENING HOURS AS A STRONG SOUTH TO NORTH PRESSURE GRADIENT DEVELOPS.”

Shoremont mystery


We’ve talked before about the teardown-to-townhouse plan for the 57th/Alki corner (across from Alki Automotive) now mostly occupied by the stately brick Shoremont Apartments (photo above). After WSB reader Fiona e-mailed to point out (thank you!) that the parcel suddenly turned up the other day listed for sale for $2.2 million, we published a post about it half an hour ago – then double checked the listing link – which originally had ad verbiage suggesting the project could proceed OR the apartments could stay (or some combination?) – but that link (as you’ll see if you click it) is suddenly no longer good; sometime in the past 24 hours or so, the listing went away. We’re looking to see if evidence of it is still out there somewhere (that’ll teach us, we need to get screen grabs of everything!), so far can’t find it. Sold, or “never mind”? Fascinating.

High Wind Watch for West Seattle (and beyond)

Unless you moved here after Windstorm 2006 last December, you may be quaking like a leaf in the breeze at the prospect of the High Wind Watch alert just issued this morning — after all, West Seattle got hit the worst in that December-to-remember wallop, with most of us losing electricity for at least a few days. The city promises it will do a better job of getting out information this year regarding when the juice is coming back; crews have also been out for weeks trying to take some preventive action – we saw city tree trimmers along Cali just a few days ago. So get your batteries (laptop too!), your firewood, your blankets, your nonperishable food and drink, and hang on. As for the latest on whether Windstorm ’07 is really on the way, besides the usual collection of basic online forecasts (we like Weather Underground), here’s a great page to watch, with behind-the-scenes talk about what the real experts are seeing: The local National Weather Service “forecast discussion,” updated several times daily.

Huling/GEE eviction lawsuit: They’re talking

We’re into the second week of idleness for the ex-GEE/ex-Huling dealerships along Fauntleroy. Since the Gees had till today to answer the eviction lawsuit filed by the Hulings, we checked with the Hulings’ lawyer to see what was going on. geehulingicon.jpgRandall Beighle of Lane Powell tells WSB that instead of an official hearing, he met informally this afternoon with Ryan Gee, and that they are in the process of coming up with an agreement for when the Gees will vacate the dealerships. Beighle says this would mean they’ll avoid a court fight over when the Gees will depart, though he also reiterates these talks have no bearing on the other lawsuit, filed by the Gees against the Hulings. He says the Gees hope to keep possession of the lots till the end of next month. As for another question many have asked — what’s the Huling family’s plan for the dealership sites? — Beighle says the Hulings are not currently marketing the properties and are still deciding what to do next.

Reader Recommendation Requests: Teeth, eyes, cars

All recommendations in the comments, please:

Danielle is looking for a “nice dentist” in West Seattle who is in the Delta Dental Care PPO.

Cleat is looking for an eye doctor recommendation, VSP insurance, “who would be the right one for someone who is diabetic and has skin allergies around the eyes … and has had 5 refractions w/o success in getting an exam that produces eyeglasses which give good vision!”

Sandra is looking for a “reputable mechanic” in WS for the once-over on a vehicle she’s buying.

Alki Statue of Liberty plaza proponents’ update

First update at the blog since just before the September 11th statue unveiling — they say they’re halfway to the $ they need for a plaza around the statue, and their new fundraising drive is “buy (plaza) bricks for the holidays.” This Alki Statue of Liberty mini-update gives us an excuse to reuse this photo Mark Bourne shared late last month, just ’cause we liked it so much:


Another restaurant reopens

Fish & chips fans, rejoice — The Sunfish shutdown, though a few days longer than first projected, is over.

Pet rescuer’s surprise “rescue”

Teri from the rescue group Furry Faces Foundation has suddenly found herself in a bit of a rescue situation – a lost cat turned up in her yard yesterday. Teri describes the cat as gray, no collar, looking confused (“maybe an indoor cat that got out, or new to the neighborhood?” Teri muses); if you’ve lost a gray cat in West Seattle, call her and describe your cat’s physical features, “unique personality,” and the area where your cat’s missing (no, she says, it isn’t Flint) — in the meantime, she’s taking the cat to a vet later to scan for a possible ID chip. You can reach Teri at or 206-932-1652.

59th/Admiral shooting suspect update – and lawyer’s request

arrow.jpgAn unexpected note landed in the WSB inbox overnight — from the lawyer for the 17-year-old who turned himself in the day after the fatal shooting at 59th & Admiral inside the black car marked with a white arrow in the photo at right. The lawyer, Bellevue-based Robert Perez, tells WSB his client remains in juvenile detention following a hearing yesterday, and adds, “I can assure you that the circumstances leading to the shooting were anomalous and it’s my belief that my client poses no danger to anyone in your community.” That comment was in response to our followup questions after Perez’s first note to us, which asked if we would post his “call for witnesses” — in the WSB tradition of posting many things verbatim so you can evaluate for yourself, here’s what he wrote:Read More

A letter to the community from Fauntleroy Church

This morning, we finally heard from Fauntleroy Church (UCC) leadership regarding the Tent City 3 proposal, which, as we reported on Sunday with reader assistance, is now tabled. Rev. David Kratz forwarded a letter to the community dated Sunday, and added a few additional comments. First, the letter, in its entirety:

Dear Neighborhood Friends,

During the first week of October, a small group of men and women from Tent City 3 (TC3) came to our church to present information, and to ask if we would consider hosting them from December through February because of their pressing need for somewhere to live at that time. Because of their need, we agreed to have TC3 make a similar presentation to our congregation last Sunday. A majority of church members at the meeting favored exploring the possibility of hosting TC3, but there were many concerns about whether we are well-positioned to explore this question right now.

Homelessness and housing is a multi-faceted issue that seriously concerns us. The growing gap between the rich and the poor, the diminishing of the middle class, the rapid loss of affordable housing across the nation and in Seattle, and more importantly coming to know individual homeless people prompt us to discern how we should respond as followers of Christ.

Fauntleroy Church has a long history of service on behalf of the poor. One of the things we’re most proud of is having helped found the original First Avenue Service Center in downtown Seattle (now called the Family and Adult Service Center). FASC is a program that provides the homeless with basic human services, such as nutritious meals, a place to shower, laundry facilities, access to phone and computer services, as well as case management, assistance finding safe and affordable housing, vocational training, and much more.

This morning our Church Council decided not to host Tent City 3 in the near future. We do plan to continue educating ourselves on the issue of homelessness. We directed our Outreach Ministry to create a Homelessness Task Force, with the charge to explore the whole range of theological, biblical, social, and psychological dimensions of homelessness and seek appropriate responses for our church. We plan to start this effort in 2008. We will keep you apprised of our process. Perhaps you may want to join our conversations and learn with us–we would welcome your wisdom and questions. We honor our relationship with you just as much as we do our call to serve the “least among us.”


David Kratz, Senior Pastor
Susan Towner Larsen, Associate Pastor
Steve Sundquist, Moderator, Church Council

Rev. Kratz added in his e-mail to WSB that he has read the comments on our previous posts and, “I would invite anyone who would like to participate in a broader conversation about how to respond to people who are homeless to become part of a mailing list we are starting. As the letter states in the winter we will take a broader
look and would welcome the wisdom of concerned folks.”

Ama-Ama about to open

The restaurant taking over the ex-Ovio space in The Junction has finally pulled the wraps off its website (menu info here, explanation of its name here) — and it’s opening for business this Friday, after a shakedown cruise Thursday, announced in this e-mail sent out early today and forwarded by a WSB reader (thank you!):

Well, we are finally ready to open! We know it’s very last minute, but we wanted to thank you for your interest and offer you a chance to come in, say hello, and sample our fare before we officially open our doors this Friday. So if you are in the neighborhood and in an “adventurous” mood, we would love to have you RSVP and come in for our Pre-Opening Dinner on Thursday, October 18th.

Why “adventurous?” Well, because Thursday will be our first night serving a full menu and our last night of staff training, so there are bound to be a few glitches and surprises. For example, we are still waiting on our liquor license, so we may not be able to offer full bar service, but we are going to try to get our license by then. But if you are just a little bit patient and understanding, you will get a sneak peek at our totally remodeled interior and be one of the first to taste our new menu offerings.

And we will give you 50% off your food for being adventurous. Seating is limited, available only to those who have previously registered with us at And only those with reservations will be allowed in the restaurant this Thursday. So please RSVP today!

We hope to see you Thursday – or sometime soon.

We are extremely excited to meet all of you!
Rob and Paige

West Seattle wine country

Ah, wine country: The rolling hills of Napa … Sonoma … Walla Walla … Puget Ridge. Yes, as in, the eastern highlands of West Seattle, home to South Seattle Community College and its award-winning winemaking program. Back in June, when we shared the news that SSCC’s Northwest Wine Academy had received a medal at the Seattle Wine Awards, some readers asked when its next wine release was scheduled. Last night was the night; our WSB videographer dropped in to talk to a couple of the program leaders, wine program coordinator Regina Daigneault and wine program winemaker Peter Bos:

At last night’s event, the academy offered its 2006 Cabernet Sauvignon and 2006 Merlot for sale, $20 each, and offered pre-sale of its 2006 barrel-fermented Chardonnay and 2006 no-oak Chardonnay (each $18) and 2006 late-harvest Sauvignon Blanc ($15). It also announced two upcoming happenings we’re adding to our Events page pronto: the Holiday Barrel Tasting on December 7 and 8, and the Gifts from the Earth food/wine event on January 26, touting “30 Washington wineries and 15 celebrity chefs.” If you want to check on wine availability following last night’s event, e-mail Regina here.

West Seattle’s new State Senator

Photos just in — courtesy of M. Thomas (thank you!) — from today’s swearing-in of West Seattle’s State Sen. Joe McDermott, after the King County Council (shown in the second photo) officially appointed him. (Top photo shows Sen. McDermott taking the oath of office with a former State Senator from West Seattle, Judge Mike Heavey.)



If you don’t know a lot about Sen. McDermott, check out his bio on the State House site. Among many other things, he formerly taught at South Seattle Community College; on a completely tangential note now, SSCC happens to be where the WSB video crew attended the Northwest Wine Academy release party this evening; clips and info coming up late tonight.

Monday evening miscellany

-Following up on the process of choosing a new State House Representative for West Seattle (and the rest of the 34th District), now that the King County Council has formally appointed ex-Rep. Joe McDermott to the State Senate: The 34th District Democrats now have the date, time, and place set for their meeting to make a recommendation: 7 pm November 1st, Hall at Fauntleroy. That will be eight days after their candidates’ forum.

-For everyone who helped out with the Prudential NW Realty food drive at three local supermarkets a week ago, Bill Barna sent the final numbers and a big thank you: 2,575 pounds of food donated, $1,805 cash donated. By the way, you can donate to the West Seattle Food Bank online any time here.

-If you happened to see the tv story about public sex at Westcrest Park, you may be interested in the Slog take on it today. (Also, we received a note from a WSB reader who has written to the city about the Westcrest situation twice and hasn’t even received a reply.)

-Speaking of Slog, our favorite citywide news blog, we are honored to have finished right on its heels in a contest we didn’t know was happening till a reader wrote to tell us WSB was among the winners – the Evening Magazine Best of Western Washington “Best Local Blog” category. WSB is the only neighborhood site, and the only not-owned-by-a-bigger-media-business site, on the BoWW list (along with Slog, which is run by The Stranger, the other winners were a blog by the Seattle Times and Citizen Rain, which is a production of If you were among those who voted, THANKS!

From the ongoing series “Teardowns to Townhomes”

October 15, 2007 2:34 pm
|    Comments Off on From the ongoing series “Teardowns to Townhomes”
 |   Development | West Seattle housing | West Seattle news


These WWII-era multiplexes on the west side of California near Hinds — 3409 and 3423, sold earlier this year for almost $2 million — are now future townhouse fodder. A permit has just been granted to change the lot boundaries; two 4-unit townhouses are planned at 3409, same thing for 3423.

Arrest in 59th/Admiral murder

First word from the P-I: suspect arrested in Bellevue. More to come. 12:10 PM UPDATE: Checked the King County Jail Register. Only one person booked for “investigation of homicide” in the past 24 hours; that person was booked in at 6:37 last night, out 36 minutes later. (The suspect is described as a juvenile, so this likely means he was transferred elsewhere, not set free.) The victim still has not been publicly identified; the county Medical Examiner usually issues afternoon updates, so we might have that info later.

Still closed, now scrutinized

Still seems Chuck and Sally’s Tavern north of Morgan Junction is the sort of place that should have had a “we’re closing” party rather than just fading away. Whatever the case, it’s still closed, and as we reported here and here, seems unlikely to be reopening. Latest action at the site is a city violation notice of “illegal land use” — according to the notation on the city website, the alleged violation constituted “using the property (used to be a tavern) as a parking lot.” Not much action when we went by, though:


Monday: Happening tonight

October 15, 2007 5:04 am
|    Comments Off on Monday: Happening tonight
 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle politics | WS beverages

From our frequently updated Events page (keep sending us your additions!):

ROADS/TRANSIT PROP 1 FORUM: The new and growing group Sustainable West Seattle is putting this on tonight at Camp Long, 7-9 pm. Not sure whether you’re voting for or against Prop 1? Go hear what supporters and opponents have to say, and what victory or defeat could mean for West Seattle.

WINE RELEASE PARTY: The award-winning winemakers at SSCC are releasing their newest creations tonight, 6-9 pm.

NIA FOR THE BEGINNER: The increasingly popular workout known as Nia is offered at several West Seattle locations (local instructors are blogging here), and starting tonight, beginners can check out a special series of classes at High Point Community Center, 6-7 pm.

West Seattle Big Band at the Fauntleroy Fall Festival

October 14, 2007 11:13 pm
|    Comments Off on West Seattle Big Band at the Fauntleroy Fall Festival
 |   West Seattle festivals | West Seattle video | WS culture/arts

Good crowd for the events at three Fauntleroy venues this afternoon. Our videographer stopped by to catch a song from the West Seattle Big Band. (Note the audio mix is a little odd because we’re just using the camera mike; a high-quality external mike is next on the shopping list!)

It’s been a busy year for the WSBB, seen at other big events including the Hi-Yu Concert in the Park and Alki Statue of Liberty unveiling.

Let’s make it 2 for 2 in October

missingcat.jpgDays after WSB readers helped bring Max back home, are you ready to help reunite another lost cat with its owner? At right, you see Flint the cat, whose owners write:

We were having our roof replaced this week and our cat got spooked and ran away from home. We’ve waited 4 days for him and have done the normal walking the neighborhoods, putting up posters and such. Now we’re asking for additional eyes to help us.

Flint is a grey and white male cat – 3yo. He’s gray with a white chest and white paws – very distinctive. He is microchipped. He is on regular medicine and is need of treatment. Please help us find him.

Flint disappeared at 26th & Holden (map below). You can reach his owners at 206-355-8965.

View Larger Map

La Rustica reopens

Took a little longer than the family that runs the restaurant expected, but the fire repairs and remodeling are complete and tonight, the sign in the window of the Beach Drive bistro reads “OPEN,” and La Rustica is serving customers once more.

Reader update on Fauntleroy Church/Tent City proposal

In case you don’t catch it in the comments on our original report, WSB reader Bonnie just posted:

I just returned from the Fauntleroy Fall Festival and was told that they have decided NOT to host the tent city. There was a meeting this morning where it was decided.

That’s all we can tell you – still haven’t heard anything from the church.