month : 09/2008 352 results

Happy 6th anniversary, Hotwire Coffee!


We’ll explain the photo in a minute (you probably recognize the guy on the left). We took it this morning at Hotwire Coffee (WSB’s very first sponsor), which is celebrating its 6th anniversary in West Seattle this month. As part of the festivities, Hotwire’s having a weekly “Barista Balderdash Smackdown” with brain-teaser quiz questions – guess the meaning of a specific uncommon word, for example. A new Smackdown starts tomorrow; tomorrow Hotwire’s also offering a few other deals – including a chair massage/latte deal, 20-minute massage plus 12-ounce latte for $15, 9 am-3 pm tomorrow as well as the next two Saturdays (9/13 and 9/20). Oh, as for the photo? Baristas Blayne (of “Project Runway” fame) and Mary are shown with Mr. Manatee, loaned to Hotwire by WSB when we heard one of the Barista Smackdown topics had something to do with manatees’ genetic makeup. Just go see for yourself (if somehow you’ve never been to Hotwire – just past the Junction Post Office, on the east side of California just south of Genesee).

Gateway Cleanup countdown: 8 days away, prep work begins

September 5, 2008 10:04 am
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 |   How to help | West Seattle news

One week from tomorrow, a huge volunteer cleanup effort will tackle the “West Seattle Gateway” stretch of Fauntleroy, from Walking on Logs to 35th. Nancy Driver from the Fairmount Community Association has been providing updates – here’s the latest:

The goats, as cute as they would have been, are out of the picture. Some of you may have noticed that blackberry removal started yesterday. We were very fortunate that Jim Thorburn, the Community Corrections Supervisor- Seattle WORKCREW Program, with the State Department of Corrections agreed to take out the blackberries that we would have had to pay to have the goats clear out. We are very grateful to Jim and DOC – they are doing more than what they would normally commit to. Jim has lived in West Seattle all his life. Much thanks to him and his crew for this service to the community.

As mentioned in our last update, volunteer help is still welcome but what’s needed most right now is financial donations to help pay for tree work — if you can help, please e-mail Nancy – – The cleanup is 9 am-3:30 pm Saturday 9/13 (and please note that the curbside lane of that area will be closed during that time, for volunteers’ safety).

Update: Burien shooting suspect sought in West Seattle

(video added 9:48 am, shot about an hour and a half earlier in Pigeon Point/Puget Ridge)
ORIGINAL REPORT: Thanks to those who have e-mailed/texted about major police activity in the South Seattle Community College vicinity, mostly around 16th SW – we’re checking to see what it’s about, both by phone and in person. Will post when we find something out; let us know if you know anything. 8:27 AM UPDATE: We’ve seen King County Sheriff’s Office personnel involved in this as well as Seattle Police so we have inquired with both departments; KCSO’s Sgt. John Urquhart says “we’re looking for a suspect who ran off on us” but can’t elaborate on exactly what the suspect is wanted for – he says they’d received a tip the suspect lived in West Seattle, then about 7 this morning the suspect “took off” — Seattle Police are helping with the search. More information as we get it. 9:01 AM UPDATE: Scanner information (and one text message) suggests the search is also moving into other parts of east West Seattle – just letting you know in case you see the officers. 9:53 AM UPDATE: A description was just put out over the scanner: Black male, 28 years old, thin, no facial hair, black jacket/blue jeans but “possibly changed clothes to unknown T-shirt and boxer shorts.” Call 911 with any info. 10:09 AM UPDATE: Sgt. Urquhart just confirmed, the man they are looking for was being sought in connection with last night’s double shooting in Burien (here’s tv coverage). They now believe he may have escaped the area. If any photo or further description is made available later today, we will post it in a separate report.

Alki Statue of Liberty Plaza: Celebration tomorrow; more brick sales


(photo by David Hutchinson)
After two months in storage during plaza construction, the Alki Statue of Liberty is back – and on its new pedestal. Today, the pedestal and plaza get a few finishing touches, just in the nick of time for tomorrow’s all-day dedication celebration (schedule here). At the site Thursday afternoon, Plaza Project co-chairs Libby and Paul Carr revealed they’ve reopened brick sales – they have the green light to sell hundreds more, $150 personal/$300 business, to be engraved on-site – the money, they say, goes to a special fund the city Parks Department will use to maintain the plaza. Brick-buying forms will be available at Saturday’s event, and online at

Updating neighborhood plans: Public hearing set

September 5, 2008 1:03 am
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 |   Development | Neighborhoods

Sometimes when development issues come up, and a controversial change is described as “according to what’s in the neighborhood plan,” people say “Who made that plan, when, and why?” The plans (all linked here) were drawn up about a decade ago, in an intensive community-involved process. You can’t go back in time and change what was written into them then – BUT you can get involved now with the process that will lead to neighborhood-plan updates – next opportunity has just been announced, a public hearing before the City Council at City Hall next Monday night, 5:30 pm. Agenda here.

Another door-to-door story: Asking about kids?

If anyone has info that this is a legitimate door-to-door survey, it would be nice to hear … otherwise we would agree with Karma, who sent us the report, that the line of questioning is potentially unsettling:Read More

Another Car-Free Day alert: Flyer with a few more fine points

We mentioned earlier that the city is also leafletting cars as an extra way of getting out the word about Car-Free Day on Alki SW this Sunday (parking restrictions 10 am-6 pm, driving restrictions noon-6 pm). Looking at the leaflet forwarded by SDOT’s Rick Sheridan, we see a few additional details: The parking restrictions are now listed as SW Maryland (map) to 63rd SW – different from the traffic closure, which is supposed to start at California Way (map); the bus lane is described as being for the 56 as well as the Water Taxi shuttle (route 773). You can see the flyer here.

Updates: Teenage girl hit crossing 35th at Juneau


(Investigation photo added 4:12 pm)
Just got two reports about this, and we’re en route to check it out in person: Some kind of crash has closed 35th between Findlay and Graham (High Point area; here’s a map), so obviously stay clear. (There’s been an open “medic response” call at 35th/Juneau since just before 3 pm, so likely that’s related.) More to come. 3:44 PM UPDATE: Our crew’s getting closer and confirms people are being turned around at Findlay. 3:50 PM UPDATE: We’re being told at the scene that a pedestrian got hit, 35th/Juneau. A witness tells us it may have been a teenager – books and clothes are visible in the street – and that the injuries are believed to have been life-threatening. An official police/fire spokesperson is expected at the scene shortly. 4 PM UPDATE: Police briefing just concluded — teenage girl hit while crossing 35th at Juneau, west to east, black SUV hit her, crime investigators have just arrived – trying to get in touch with witnesses and hope to have the street open within the next two hours. The girl was taken to Harborview Medical Center; no word on her condition. 4:50 PM UPDATE: Adding video of what Sgt. A.T. Bailey of Seattle Police told reporters at the scene:

Also, here’s the vehicle that police say hit the girl:


ADDED 5 PM: Thanks to the commenters who have added information (as well as discussion). This is about a half-mile from the scene of the deadly car vs. pedestrian crash near Camp Long that killed Gregory Hampel last month; we also have covered previous non-fatal crashes at 35th/Juneau (here is a sample report from earlier this year). 5:04 PM UPDATE: We just checked back at the scene – 35th is still closed – “traffic is a nightmare,” according to our crew – please avoid the area. 6:52 PM UPDATE: 35th is now open.

Update: Alki Statue of Liberty is back – in a way


Less than 48 hours to go till the Alki Statue of Liberty Plaza dedication celebration – and Parks Department workers, under the direction of project manager Patrick Donohue, are racing to the finish of what was an incredibly short construction schedule – less than two months. As part of that, the statue itself is to be placed atop its new pedestal by day’s end – it’s already on site, resting in the back of a pickup truck (as shown above) on the north side of the construction site. Its current position affords a view that hopefully won’t have to be seen again – inside the statue from its base:


Right now, crews are working to be sure the new pedestal, its steel support, and the bronze lantern between pedestal and statue all fit together – they were built in different places at different times, in part because of the project’s time constraints. Also at the site, along with Donohue and his crew members, Plaza Project co-chairs Libby and Paul Carr, who are busy putting the final touches on the plan for Saturday’s all-day celebration (we’ve got one of the first copies of the official program; you can see the schedule online here); one data point they shared – if you bought a brick in the plaza, you will be able to find it easily on Saturday, because committee members David and Eilene Hutchinson (who have kindly shared great photos with WSB along the way) have catalogued the location of each brick, and a schematic will be available at a table by the plaza to direct brick-owners to the locations. 4:16 PM UPDATE: The statue has just been replaced atop its pedestal – so that’s what you’ll see if you come by Alki tonight – we’ll be adding more visuals a bit later – some paving work at the site is scheduled tomorrow morning, for finishing touches.

District Councils’ meeting, report #2: The Viaduct, what’s ahead

September 4, 2008 2:34 pm
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 |   Alaskan Way Viaduct | Delridge District Council | Southwest District Council | Transportation | West Seattle news

viaductphoto.jpgBy year’s end, there’s supposed to be a plan for what will happen when the Central Waterfront mile of the Alaskan Way Viaduct comes down in 2012. Since that plan will affect West Seattle mobility in a big way, community leaders have been working to make sure they and their groups are plugged in to the latest information — and that’s the reason most of last night’s joint meeting of the Southwest and Delridge District Councils focused on what’s up with The Viaduct. They got a heavy-hitting panel of top transportation execs to present the briefing — WSDOT’s David Dye, SDOT’s Bob Powers, and King County Department of Transportation director Harold Taniguchi. In addition, meeting participants included the two West Seattleites who serve on the Stakeholder Advisory Group that’s been helping vet Central Waterfront possibilities — Delridge District Council chair Pete Spalding and Fauntleroy Community Association‘s Vlad Oustimovitch. Here’s what happened in the meeting:Read More

Alki Car-Free Day countdown: “No parking” signs up


The city promised it would put up “No Parking” signs 72 hours in advance of this Sunday’s Car-Free Day on Alki – we just checked, and as that photo shows, they kept the promise. Alki SW is off-limits for parking from California Way to 63rd SW (map’s on the city-info page) 10 am to 6 pm on Sunday; it will be closed to traffic (except one lane for the Water Taxi shuttle bus, and some resident-access exceptions) noon-6 for the actual event. Next part of the notification plan that’s scheduled to kick in: Automated phone calls to area residents/businesses, which SDOT’s Rick Sheridan told us would start this afternoon. (Let us know if you get one!) 6:05 PM UPDATE: Just got word from SDOT that leaflets are being placed on cars. Will upload a copy of the leaflet soon as we can so you can see it.

Will you be one of “Tomorrow’s Heroes”?

September 4, 2008 12:10 pm
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 |   West Seattle news

The county Public Health Department is putting out a call for volunteers who can be on standby in case of a public-health emergency, calling them “Tomorrow’s Heroes.” Here are full details on who they need and how to get involved.

Semi-wildlife sighting: Goats on the loose!


We posted this first at partner site White Center Now, since it’s in the unincorporated area, but the photo’s too good not to share here too. We got it along with this report from Phoebe:

There were goats running around loose near SW 106th Street and 28th Ave SW this AM! (map) I saw them darting out into traffic and then ducking into this yard for a snack! I parked my car and tried to find where they had escaped from, without any luck. Eventually I called animal control, who told me the goats are technically in King Co (Seattle city limits end at SW 106th & 32nd Ave SW) and that she would “see what she could do.” I drove by again at 10:00 and I didn’t see them in the area … I hope they made it home safe & sound!

Welcoming a new WSB sponsor: Eagle Electric of Seattle

Today we’re welcoming another West Seattle-based business to the WSB sponsor team: Eagle Electric of Seattle. eaglemascot.jpgThey’re reachable at 206/246-7123, and they’re online at At left you see Eagle Electric‘s mascot, who keeps eagle-eyed watch over a strong family business: When Wendy and Dave Lind welcomed daughter Amelia into the world five months ago, Amelia became the 5th generation of Linds to live in West Seattle. Dave’s dad Larry Lind started Eagle in 1982 and has extended the service range from West Seattle and White Center to Burien, and as far south as Tacoma. Dave took over from Larry in 2001. Dave tells us the whole family has worked hard and gotten high marks from clients for their fair pricing and the overall appearance and quality of their work. They’ve received positive customer referrals not only from the WSB Forums’ Reader Recommendations section, but also from Angie’s List and Service Magic. Eagle is a member of Electricians’ Success International – a US and Canadian business group made up of 350 contractors. They’re members of the Better Business Bureau, Master Builders Association, the Eaton Certified Contractor Network, and the West Seattle Chamber of Commerce. Welcome to Eagle Electric! We appreciate their support and we appreciate your support for all WSB sponsors, who make it possible for us to bring you real-time West Seattle news, information, and discussion — just like Eagle Electric of Seattle, we are here for you 24/7. If you’d like to see the full list of sponsors and/or find out how to join them in reaching thousands of people every day, here’s the place to start.

Back-to-school week: Sanislo walkers’ unresolved safety issue


We told you a few weeks ago that work was almost done on the new sidewalks leading to Sanislo Elementary School (map) leading to it from the east. On the first day of school, as the photo above shows, the sidewalk was open and in use. But there’s another issue left resolved: Crossing nearby streets safely. Close to the school, student crossing guards are on the job, like Antje Staudt‘s daughter:


But about a block east, where Myrtle meets busy arterial 16th SW (map) – still no adult crossing guard. We first talked with Antje and other Sanislo parents last spring (WSB coverage here) when the situation came to light: The longtime crossing guard had become chronically ill, and wasn’t replaced — in the midst of a citywide crossing-guard crunch, with dozens of positions open. Sanislo parents and administrators had been working with citywide pedestrian-advocacy group Feet First on the issue; FF says the police department, which administers the crossing-guard program (from central HQ, not from local precincts), hired several new guards citywide but still has no current plan to replace the 16th/Myrtle guard. FF says concerns can be directed to Karen Bye, who runs the guard program, at 684-8984. By the way, while we were in the area Wednesday morning, we noticed police on patrol for traffic violators in the school zone – an alleged violator got pulled over heading north on 16th SW near the intersection:


The City Council has a Pedestrian Safety committee, but its next quarterly meeting is not planned till December.

6053 California demolition under way


Thanks to Brian for the tip – a month and a half after the demolition permit was issued, the backhoe’s digging right now into 6053 California (at Graham, north end of Morgan Junction) right now, from the alley side first (this view is looking southeast through the back fence in the alley west of the site) – this demolition has been going on by hand for a few weeks, as parts of the building were “deconstructed” for salvage before the walls started coming down. This is the building we once wrote we’d be sad to see go:


But neighbors are thrilled because while it’s been vacant, they’ve had tons of trouble with trespassers, transients, and even some arrests. Here’s the latest rendering we have of the townhouse/live-work project slated to replace it:


10:29 AM UPDATE: The teardown is currently in a stopdown – so if you drive by any time soon, you won’t see anything obvious from California or Graham.

If your garden runneth over — “Share the Bounty”

September 4, 2008 6:16 am
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 |   Gardening | How to help | West Seattle news

harvestpic.jpgIf your garden’s bursting with more veggies and fruit than you can use, Community Harvest of Southwest Seattle and the White Center Food Bank (whose service area includes southern West Seattle) have a new way for you to make sure they don’t go to waste — “Share the Bounty,” Sunday 9/14 at the West Seattle Farmers’ Market. Community Harvest will have a table set up there; just bring your spare produce to donate, during WSFM hours, 10 am-2 pm that day. Want to know more? Check the Community Harvest website at, or call 762-0604.

Reader report: What it was like at the Democratic Nat’l Convention


(photos courtesy Chris Porter)
As the Republican National Convention heads into its final night, we’ve just received a firsthand report from one of three West Seattleites who were delegates to the Democratic National Convention. It occurred to us way too late that we should have arranged with local delegates to send back in-progress reports … Chris Porter of Fauntleroy must have been reading our minds, as his story and photos just landed in the WSB inbox even without us having asked. (Haven’t seen any evidence of West Seattle Republicans in Minnesota – but if you know of one, have ’em give us a shout.) Here’s what he has to say, and show:Read More

District Councils, report #1: Park name, Gateway cleanup

The bulk of tonight’s joint meeting of the Delridge and Southwest District Councils was devoted to an intensive briefing on where the Alaskan Way Viaduct projects stand now; we’ll be writing that up in the morning, but there are a couple quick notes to pass along tonight: First, the councils’ members voted unanimously to ask the Parks Department to make an exception to its park-naming policy so that a future West Seattle park can be named in honor of the late West Seattle Herald reporter Tim St. Clair — possibly the new park in Morgan Junction, where Mr. St. Clair lived prior to his untimely death six months ago. (Official Parks policy currently says that can’t be done till someone’s been gone three years.) Second, Nancy Driver from Fairmount Community Association provided another update at meeting’s end on the West Seattle Gateway cleanup coming up a week from Saturday: Volunteer power is stacking up nicely (thanks to all the WSB’ers who have signed up); what’s most needed now is $ donation to help pay for some tree work. DNDA is serving as the “fiscal agent” for the cleanup effort (which will beautify the “gateway” area along the Fauntleroy end of The Bridge, Walking on Logs to 35th/Fauntleroy. To find out more about how to donate, e-mail Nancy at

Double feature at Ginomai: “Thriller” practice, Blayne on “Runway”

September 3, 2008 11:21 pm
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 |   Fun stuff to do | West Seattle people | West Seattle video


That’s the group of zombie wannabes who turned out for the first practice of the West Seattle “Thrill the World” group, tonight at Ginomai right before the weekly “Project Runway” viewing party. It’s not too late to get involved — you can show up next Wednesday at 8 pm; that’s the weekly rehearsal time, leading up to the October 25 performance as part of the world-record attempt. Now, as for “Project Runway,” we’re still in no-home-page-spoilers mode, so click ahead to see how tonight’s episode went for Hotwire Coffee (WSB sponsor) barista Blayne, and what Blayne’s boss had to say about it afterward:Read More

Wildlife watch: Admiral District coyote sighting

Jessica wanted people in the area to know, so she sent this tonight:

Just saw a coyote crossing the street, 41st ave SW, a block from Metropolitan Market. Feeling afraid for kitties we spotted out.

Previous West Seattle coyote-sighting reports published on WSB are archived here. ADDED 11:56 PM: In comments on this post, Jenny mentioned a Lincoln Park sighting – she then sent us this photo:


ADDED THURSDAY AFTERNOON: Big Old Daddy sends word of another sighting:

Didn’t think to report this when it happened, but my son and I were at the kitchen table about 9 AM on Tuesday, Sep 2, when he spotted a coyote ambling down the neighbor’s driveway on SW Cloverdale near Fauntleroy Place SW. The coyote strolled up Cloverdale where another neighbor tried to scare it away with some pebbles. Last night yet another neighbor came over to ask if we had seen one of their cats – one who never misses a meal and may have become one. I’m pretty sure this is the same critter we saw lounging in a neighbor’s yard a couple of months ago.

Countdown to Car-Free Sunday: Activities planned


As the city’s “Car-Free Day” on Alki SW (California Way to 63rd SW, as per the above map) gets closer – noon-6 pm this Sunday – we’re posting daily reminders with the newest information. Tonight, a couple of activity updates; Coastal on Alki is planning a skateboarding “mini-ramp in the street” plus raffles and a “street sale.” Several local organizations and businesses are planning to set up tables with information about walking and biking — we just talked with Chas Redmond at the Delridge/Southwest District Councils’ joint meeting at Youngstown Arts Center, and he’ll be there with more (free!) copies of the West Seattle Walking Trails Map. In addition, as mentioned previously, the Cones for Kids Children’s Hospital guild fundraiser is set for 1-4 pm at Alki Bathhouse, and we got word this week that West Seattle-based BabyLegs is offering a gift bag (with a free pair of BabyLegs) to the first 50 people to take part in Cones for Kids. Meantime, as we reported earlier this week, the city is planning one last infoblitz to make sure no one in the affected area misses word that this is happening – tomorrow, a city phone system is scheduled to make calls to residents and businesses, and the “No Parking” signs (restrictions are in effect 10 am-6 pm Sunday) should be going out tomorrow, since SDOT told us they’ll be up with 72 hours’ notice. More infobits in tomorrow’s update, if not sooner; here’s the official city information page. ADDED 10:38 PM: Bill Reiswig from Sustainable West Seattle passed along some more information — info-tabling will be happening noon-5, bicycle-maintenance demonstrations and repair assistance are planned 5-6. Other groups participating include, Cascade Bicycle Club, and Feet First; we’re told the Rat City Rollergirls are even expected to put in an appearance — this is all planned in the parking strip in front of the bathhouse.

Upgraded way to watch which ferry is where

Found out from the WSDOT Twitter feed that Washington State Ferries has upgraded its “Vessel Watch” feature, which uses GPS to show which ferry is where. You can see it here.