month : 03/2008 311 results

West Seattle Crime Watch: Particularly damaging burglary

Just out of the inbox from Megan:

Our house was broken into today. We are in the 7300 block of 28th ave SW. They took the typical stuff … mostly electronics. The most disturbing part was all the rummaging they did; everything was thrown out of drawers, and the house was completely torn apart. They even tried to drill through a window, leaving it cracked but not broken out and broke our new plasma tv when they realized they couldn’t take it with them. The police indicated that this fit the profile of just wanting to damage property, not necessarily steal anything of value (nothing that they couldn’t walk away with). We are super bummed but no one was hurt, our pets were scared but safe and this is what insurance is for. It’s just a bummer that people are so disrespectful.

Here’s a map of that area.

Alki wildlife like you’ve (probably) never seen it

You usually know him for his party coverage (like WSU and OLG), but correspondent Rock Steele, Man About Town, has a way with wildlife video too, allowing us to call your attention to this irresistible clip he got over the weekend of baby hummingbirds in their Alki-area nest.

West Seattle Chamber leaders: Eyes on the big picture


If you don’t know them already, meet Dawn Leverett and Patti Mullen — board president and executive director, respectively, of the West Seattle Chamber of Commerce. As changes aplenty propel West Seattle into a bigger, busier future, they are among the key people looking at “the big picture” and fighting to ensure WS is more than a bedroom community whose residents have to squeeze through a worsening bottleneck to work and shop elsewhere. WSB sat down with them both a few days ago for an in-depth chat:Read More

Sun and rain right now, but just minutes ago …

The latest in the thrilling new series of “weather video from outside WSB HQ’s front door” — hail that moved through about 5:30. The forecast promises sun and mid-50s within a few days; we’ll believe it when we see it.

Three things to watch for, tonight and tomorrow

TONIGHT: If you commute from or through downtown, one last reminder that the Mariners are playing their home opener right now (follow it live online), and since it started at 3:40 pm, it’s likely to break up during the evening commute, with attendant effects on popular West Seattle-bound routes including The Viaduct, Alaskan Way, 1st and 4th Avenues.

TOMORROW: Speaking of the Mariners — tomorrow is Salute to Armed Forces Night at Safeco Field. On that same night last year, many West Seattleites were rattled (literally and figuratively) by the aircraft queueing over WS before their Safeco flyovers. (Here’s what we posted that night last year.) So this serves as your early warning for tomorrow night.

ALSO TOMORROW: The first cruise ship of the year will be visible from West Seattle shores – it’s Celebrity Cruises’ Mercury, the one with the “X” on the funnel seen at right of the photo below (taken toward the end of last cruise season; see this year’s full Seattle cruise-ship visit schedule here):


West Seattle Crime Watch: Officers fight off attackers


Thanks to Scott for that photo of a sizable police/fire response early this morning in the 6000 block of California. In case you heard the sirens too, here’s the word on what happened, from Lt. Steve Paulsen @ the Southwest Precinct: Police were called about a fight in the street involving two men (Scott says there was plenty of shouting even before law enforcement arrived); when officers intervened, they themselves were attacked, and had to use a Taser to get one suspect under control.

Updates coming this week on two West Seattle park projects

March 31, 2008 3:11 pm
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 |   Alki Statue of Liberty | West Seattle news | West Seattle parks

Thanks to Stan Lock, Neighborhood District Coordinator at the city’s West Seattle Neighborhood Service Center in The Junction, for sending the agenda for this Thursday’s city Design Commission meeting, which will include a presentation of the latest schematic design for the Alki Statue of Liberty Plaza (archived WSB coverage here) as well as a design-development update on the Myrtle Reservoir park, which as we reported a month ago is apparently definitely slated for myrtlereservoir.jpgsome kind of skateboarding feature. Here’s the full agenda for Thursday’s meeting, which is open to the public; the Statue of Liberty comes up at 1 pm Thursday, Myrtle Reservoir at 2 pm (followed by a design update on the south Viaduct replacement project at 3 pm), all in room L-280 at Seattle City Hall (600 Fourth Ave. downtown). One more Statue of Liberty note – today’s the last day to order a brick for the plaza; find out more at the Plaza Project site.

Quick updates from land-use land


Quick teardown at that site, 60th and Admiral, just a week after we told you about the permits for two duplex townhouses. Not too far away, permits are in for one duplex and two single-family homes at 6106 SW Stevens (map; project pages here and here), where a backhoe (not pictured) is already stationed behind this house:


On to the south side of West Seattle:


That’s 5933 California, which we’ve been watching for a while now (not torn down yet unless it happened this morning – we’re about to head out to check) — The latest Land Use Information Bulletin, out today, features the permit granting a seven-unit subdivision at that site (next to the townhouses at the ex-Guadalajara Hacienda site). And the Delridge building boom continues, with a permit in today’s LUIB for four 2-unit townhouses at 8444 Delridge (map).

Save it or raze it? Last comment chance for Charlestown Court



(1st photo from King County Assessor; 2nd by WSB contributing photojournalist Christopher Boffoli)

We have been reporting for almost a full year now on the fate of Charlestown Court, the 81-year-old brick fourplex across the street from the Charlestown Cafe. As we first told you last October, it is under review for possible city landmark status (or possible teardown); on February 20th, we covered the city Landmarks Preservation Board hearing downtown at which board members agreed to consider its exterior architecture for possible landmark designation. Now, it’s decision time — this Wednesday (agenda), the Landmarks Board is scheduled to listen to public comments, and vote. (The process is explained here.) If you want to tell the board what you think, e-mail comments to board coordinator Beth Chave before Wednesday at; you also can speak at the public hearing this Wednesday, 3:30 pm on the 40th floor of the Municipal Tower downtown. This process was set in motion by a proposal to tear down Charlestown Court and replace it with a 4-story mixed-use building (official city project page here), a project that’s still in the pipeline pending the outcome of the landmark review.

Reminder: It’s spring-break week for many local students

March 31, 2008 6:34 am
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle schools

You won’t see many “school zone” lights this morning — it’s Spring Break for all Seattle Public Schools and some private schools. Speaking of SPS, families are starting to get fall assignment letters; for those seeking info about any WS school, an upgrade is in progress for our West Seattle Schools page – each public elementary listing now has a link to archived WSB coverage of that school. (We’ll add the same feature for the other schools later today.)

West Seattle scenes: Final look at the weekend


From Shannon Felix at Avalon GlassWorks, blown-glass razor clams that she says are the “sleeper hit” of the Shell Show her shop’s having through April. A portion of the $30 price goes to the Seattle chapter of the Surfrider Foundation. Next, the ongoing art of nature itself, shot at Alki by Jessica Seeley (who was there doing legwork for an Alki tour you’ll see on her Seattle Neighborhood Watch blog later this week):


Also from the shore, one more shot of the Corinthian Yacht Club race featured here yesterday – this pic came in tonight from Tracy W, with a Fauntleroy-Vashon-Southworth ferry appearing to mix it up with the sailboats (CYC has now posted race results, BTW):


And finally, we go indoors, for a triumphant shot from Saturday night’s “Blarney Bowl” fundraiser at West Seattle Bowl, put on by Beer Church to raise money for Whisker City (and raise $ they did – more than $6,000, as you can see on their site). The night included the first-ever “Bar Brawl” with local establishments fielding teams for friendly competition; this Beer Church photo shows Beveridge Place Pub proprietor Gary Sink at left congratulating “brawl” winner Dave Montoure of West 5, who’s getting a hug from a member of the BPP staff:


One last photo-related note — this time, about a photo featured here earlier this week: The most-recent WSB picture of the Lincoln Park house with the war-toll sign led to a followup posted tonight on the P-I site, including quotes from the original comments posted here.

The next West Seattle caucus: Less than 1 week away

obamabarack.jpgclintoncolormug.jpgWith the Democratic presidential-nomination race not quite over yet, there’s still some potential for drama next Saturday, when more than 1,000 delegates chosen at 34th Legislative District precinct caucuses February 9 (WSB coverage with reader reports/photos here) will gather at 10 am at West Seattle High School for the districtwide Democratic caucus. If you’re one of those delegates, your phone’s likely been ringing off the hook with campaign calls making sure you’ll be there. The 34th District Democrats have tons of info on a special section of their website, as always, including the fact that those 1,000-plus delegates will elect 51 people (and 26 alternates) to move on to the King County Democratic Convention, which is also at WSHS, 2 pm April 13. As for the Republicans — no suspense there any more, but half their delegates are still coming from the caucus process; the 34th District meeting was yesterday. The next big GOP meeting is the King County Republican Convention in Auburn on April 12.

Mariners’ pizza changeup started with West Seattleite’s pitch

As the Mariners play their home opener at Safeco Field tomorrow afternoon, fans will notice something new in the food zones: gjslogo.jpgGarlic Jim’s (WSB sponsor) is now The Official Pizza of the Seattle Mariners. You might have heard this already, since the official word trickled out a couple weeks ago, but you probably haven’t heard the backstory, which involves West Seattle Garlic Jim’s owner Ryan Reese (celebrating his store’s 1st anniversary, by the way, congrats!): Ryan tells WSB he and a friend went to a game about this time last year and noticed that while the food vendors were generally local (Ivar’s, Kidd Valley, etc.), the pizza came from Papa John’s, which is based in Kentucky. Since Garlic Jim’s is headquartered in Western Washington, Ryan thought it would be a great fit at Safeco. He talked to corporate HQ in Everett; Ryan says they considered it a long shot but thought it worth making a pitch. So he checked with the M’s and discovered the pizza contract was in fact up for bid, and that GJ’s could get in on the process. They set up a meeting at The Safe; Ryan fixed pizzas at his restaurant in The Junction and took them over before he and others including Garlic Jim’s CEO Dwayne Northrop met M’s brass. Like runners moving around the bases, things advanced from there, and starting tomorrow, you’ll find Garlic Jim’s Pizza at The Safe. Ryan says the 200 level will offer pizza by the slice, and it’ll be mini-pizzas at the 100 and 300 levels. By the way, this isn’t the only Garlic Jim’s baseball involvement — after we published a West Seattle Little League pitch for team sponsors a few days ago, Ryan signed up to sponsor a WSLL team. (Don’t miss WSB contributing photojournalist Matt Durham‘s great pix from yesterday’s WSLL Jamboree; see them here.)

New site feature: West Seattle CL listings on WSB “More” page

computer.jpgWe hope you’re already well aware that several sections of WSB have continuously updated activity beyond our home-page updates: The busiest 3 sections are the ever-growing WSB Forums, of course; the Blogs page (with headlines and excerpts from the newest 50 entries on the 100-plus West Seattle-based blogs on our list); and the More page – which started with the latest 20 West Seattle- (or Viaduct-) related news headlines from citywide/regional/national sources, and now is newly expanded with the addition of one more continuously updated list: Right below the news headlines, you’ll find the newest 80 Craigslist listings that are tagged “West Seattle” (pulled from all CL categories except personals and resumes). Here’s a direct link.

Closed elementary school: District’s keeping it, for now

Though Seattle Public Schools leadership has decided to sell off a handful of former schools, including the Fauntleroy Schoolhouse (whose tenants are working to buy it; here’s WSB in-depth coverage of last Wednesday’s meeting), SPS confirms it’s keeping mothballed Fairmount Park Elementary (map) as “inventory.” (Photo at left was taken as crews moved items out after it closed at the end of last school year.) Other ex-schools in West Seattle that are NOT on the market include Louisa Boren Junior High, which will become the new temporary home of Chief Sealth High School starting this fall, and E.C. Hughes, which is the current (temporary) home of South Lake alternative high school. (Our list of all currently operating public and private schools in West Seattle is here.)

“Deathtrap” at Youngstown: Killer comi-thriller


So you remember the whole thing about the Dyan Cannon lookalike contest before opening night of Twelfth Night Productions‘ “Deathtrap” at Youngstown Arts Center Friday night? We got there in hopes of covering the big announcement … and learned they had no entrants. TNP did let us stay for the show, however (photo above features cast members Trish Loyd as Myra and Dave Clelland as Sidney); this year marks the play’s 30th anniversary, but aside from a couple period references (mentions of the late Merv Griffin, plus the ancient phrase “women’s lib”), it feels fresh and in spots, fun, especially whenever Jane Taylor as over-the-top psychic Helga (love the beaded fringe and sequins!) is onstage. Director Todd Downing paces his cast well through the many plot twists, which keep things though this is a one-setting, five-character play. Twelfth Night — a nonprofit West Seattle-based theater group (backstory here) — performs a matinee of “Deathtrap” at 3 pm today; then it plays again next Thurs-Fri-Sat-Sun (full showtimes and ticket info here).

Fresh list for today’s West Seattle Farmers’ Market

March 30, 2008 6:30 am
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 |   West Seattle Farmers' Market

10 am-2 pm today in The Junction; here are the highlights, courtesy of the Neighborhood Farmers’ Market Alliance:Read More

West Seattle Little League Jamboree: A home run

Wintry chill couldn’t keep West Seattle Little League players and families off Bar-S Playfield today for the annual season-starting Jamboree. WSB contributing photojournalist Matt Durham got tons of great shots:


At center right in the group of photos above, that’s the “Voice of the Mariners,” West Seattle resident Tom Hutyler, on hand to announce players and teams. In the group of photos below, at upper right you see former Mariners and Oakland A’s outfielder Dave Henderson pitch in the first ball, along with one lucky Little League player. Matt writes: “Players and coaches, from T-ball to Majors, ran onto the chilled field as fans and parents hailed their grit”:


Prints of Matt’s WSB photos and his other work are available through his site,

Update: Newest details on community fundraiser for arson victim


(left to right, as they’re known in the WSB Forums, JanS, NewResident [Molly], Beachdrivegirl [Megan])
Those are some of the WSB Forum Community members who gathered this morning at Uptown Espresso in The Junction for their second meeting to plan the April 19 fundraiser for Puget Sound Key and Lock, which lost everything in the still-unsolved arson attack that gutted the business eight days ago. The event will be at Admiral Pub, whose owner Eric joined the group this morning:


There’s still lots you can do to help. The group’s meeting again at Admiral Pub next Saturday at noon. In the meantime, much of the brainstorming is happening on a mailing list the group has set up – they invite you to join by following the instructions on this page. Meantime, mark your calendar for 6 pm April 19 at Admiral Pub (latest details and forum discussion here)! And you can donate any time to the Puget Sound Key and Lock account, through any Wells Fargo branch.


(Also from this morning’s meeting: To the right of Beachdrivegirl [Megan] are Alkiguy [Steve L], Kathy, Steve Sindiong from the Morgan Community Association, and JoB.)

Earth Hour: West Seattle didn’t exactly go dark

Just back from surveying the streets. Put it this way – if you were looking down from a plane or satellite, you wouldn’t have been able to tell Earth Hour from any other hour. Sure, the Space Needle was dark (clip above shows a few seconds of that, shot from Don Armeni) and the Qwest Field roof ribs too, but not much else. The porch light was even on at Hizzoner’s house in North Admiral. Here at WSB HQ, we turned off everything but the computers.

Wild weather continues: Snowy West Seattle Saturday night

March 29, 2008 7:28 pm
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 |   West Seattle weather

(Dusk video of snow added 7:59 pm) ORIGINAL 7:28 PM POST: Snowy up here in Upper Fauntleroy, just came from The Junction amid a snow/sleet mix. Got some great pix just in from the sun/clouds afternoon mix & will be adding momentarily. Update: Here are two courtesy of Chas Redmond:



7:30 PM: Forecast says snow showers could be in the picture at least through tomorrow morning. 7:37 PM: It’s STICKING already out there! ADDED LATER: Before the evening wave of snow … two more lovely pictures from earlier … first one at Don Armeni, thanks to Eric from; second one, thanks to Dawson:



Earth Hour 8-9 tonight: What you might see from West Seattle

Reminder if you missed earlier mentions (or haven’t seen Google‘s tribute) — Earth Hour is tonight, 8-9 pm, with many city-owned lights going dark by order of Mayor Nickels. If you look across the bay during Earth Hour, you’ll reportedly see such iconic illuminated structures as the Space Needle and Qwest Field participating too. Here’s worldwide backstory.

Another exotic-cat sighting in West Seattle

Shades of serval-mania! Steve in North Admiral e-mailed to say:

(Last night) we saw what looked like a very exotic cat moving rapidly through the backyards and greenbelt slope between Palm Ave SW and Ferry Ave SW in the 1700 block area. It was not so big–probably 10 – 15 pounds, but it had absolutely “african savannah cat” markings much like the larger serval cat that was seen and eventually captured a few months ago near PCC. Beautiful bold spotting on its body and black rings on its tail. I’ve never seen a cat move like this fellow–he/she was up on house roofs, back down to ground and darting around, etc. Never got close enough to get a picture.

We haven’t called animal control but probably will if we see it around again. It seemed highly stressed.

Here’s a map of the area. Here’s the last followup we had on the serval situation Steve mentioned. SUNDAY MORNING UPDATE: The situation is resolved (as per comments below) — the cat, a Savannah, found a way to get into and out of its house while its owners were away, but a friend just verified it’s back inside now – and sent this photo (so you’ll know, if you ever see it):