West Seattle, Washington
Highlights from last night’s Admiral Neighborhood Association meeting: WSDOT reps made a guest appearance as part of their tour of neighborhood groups to share “what’s next” re: the tunnel proposed to replace the Alaskan Way Viaduct‘s so-called “mile in the middle” Central Waterfront section. Also, a recap of last week’s California Place Park “design workshop” meeting featured a few tense moments, with both supporters and opponents of park change in the room. Details on both, and one other note, ahead:Read More
On Tuesday, we brought you Denny Middle School principal Jeff Clark‘s report that his school would be announced as an “international school” during tonight’s Seattle School Board meeting. He mentioned a “K-12 pathway” in West Seattle. Tonight, another piece of that pathway has become clear – a South Park school that is included in the West Seattle South cluster, Concord Elementary, has also won that designation. From the news release about tonight’s announcement:
Concord Elementary School and Denny Middle School will be designated as International Schools, beginning in September 2009. Forming the first phase of a K-12 international program pathway in West Seattle, the schools will offer major components of an international education such as language immersion, academic excellence in all content areas, world language proficiency and global perspectives incorporated into each class.
Carol Madaio, operations manager of Fauntleroy-based Tuxedos and Tennis Shoes Catering, wanted to let you know about the food drive happening at her company. She hopes it will result in overflow donations for the empty box above – and inspiration for other West Seattle companies too:
We start our week every Monday morning with an all-office meeting to go over the upcoming week. Rob Garner, our General Manager opens the meeting by reading from a book called “Every Monday Matters – 52 ways to make a difference” by Matthew Emerzian and Kelly Bozza. The book provides “52 creative but doable activities and gives 52 down to earth ways to make a difference”. Through this book, Rob, along with Tuxedos and Tennis Shoes Catering owners David Haggerty and David Meckstroth have been challenging us all to make a difference separately and collectively.
Last week’s topic – “Ever been hungry for a week?” which included the fact that 35.1 million people have limited access to enough food and that 12.4 million of those are children hit us hard. You see, that is what we do, we feed people and in the process there is always food for us to eat too. We smell delicious food all day and enjoy a family meal at lunch every day. And while our Executive Chef frequently brings appropriate leftovers to neighborhood shelters we wanted to do more.
The idea came for us to have an office food drive where instead of the usual treats at our next Monday meeting we would all bring in cans of food which would be donated to the West Seattle Food Bank. Soon the idea grew to a company food drive. We would like to put this challenge out to the rest of the West Seattle businesses to do the same this week.
(Cafe Revo’s south-side mural, featuring “Zetta,” photographed last September)
More big West Seattle food news this afternoon: We just got word from co-owner Sofia Zadra Goff — Cafe Revo, the new Italian restaurant in the Luna Park business district on Avalon (map), has passed its inspections and set its opening date. From Sofia:
On Saturday Feb 21st we will be open to the public starting at 11 am and closing 11 pm, for lunch and dinner. We will then be open for our normal hours. Sunday 12-9, Mon-Thurs 11-10 and Fri and Sat 11-11.
We introduced you to Sofia and her husband, chef Sean “Chano” Goff, in this WSB report that took you inside the then-under-construction restaurant back in June, but much has changed since then – most of it documented on the Cafe Revo website (see this page with lots of interior photos), where you also can find menu information (and meet “Nonno“!). It’s been nine months since first word that this restaurant was taking over the ex-Murphy’s space; Sofia says they’ll be training staff next week with a private “soft opening” and by-invitation charity-benefit party before the first official opening date on Saturday 2/21.
First we got the tip from Paul of PB&J Textiles … then Bonnie posted it in the WSB Forums … and we ran over to get the scoop firsthand: Tony’s Produce (35th/Barton; here’s a map) has just opened for the year, after the traditional post-Christmas break. Tony and his team are still finishing the set-up inside, but they’re officially open, 8 am-7 pm seven days a week for starters, with what Tony says are “great deals” (this one caught our eye):
He added, “We’re doing our part to stimulate the economy by keeping prices low!” But he also wanted to show off the high quality, too, directing another team member to show off these strawberries:
We asked what’s new this year; “more organics” was the first thing mentioned by Tony, shown here with a couple signs for those offerings:
We’ve got some other West Seattle business updates coming up later today/tonight, but since we had been getting questions about “when are they opening again?” we thought we’d rush this one out first.
Two weeks after the Seattle School Board voted to close the Cooper Elementary program while moving Pathfinder K-8 into the Cooper building on Pigeon Point, the reality of looming transition is settling in for hundreds of families. Last night we reported a Pathfinder update, including the start of meetings for its design team. That process apparently has not started yet for Cooper, according to this open letter to the community from Molly Usry of the Cooper PTSA:
To Concerned Community Members –
Now that we have had nearly two weeks to digest the School Board’s vote to discontinue the Cooper Program we are all trying to figure out what is next. Lawsuit? Help with the transition? Stay in denial that the Seattle School Board could vote yes for such a blatantly racist and classist recommendation?
I am personally choosing to focus on putting pressure on the District to provide for the kids whose lives they are disrupting. We need to anticipate that these kids are going to be going through the grieving process of losing their school and being separated from their friends. With this in mind we need to demand from the District that they provide us with extra counseling support for our students. They have created this mess, now they better be ready to supply us with extra resources to be able to continue to teach, parent and have the kids learning to the best of their ability through these trying times.
During a meeting with (school board member) Harium Martin-Morris yesterday, Harium mentioned he wants all the kids being displaced by the School Board’s vote to be tracked closely for at least the next 2 years with quarterly reports brought fourth on each students academic performance. I not only think this is a brilliant idea but I also think the District has a responsibility to be paying very close attention to the effects of their recommendations and votes on our children. The district should be designing a system for tracking the thousand of kids that have just been displaced immediately.
I also want to bring to everyone’s attention that design teams need to be implemented at Arbor Heights, Gatewood and Highland Park, the schools where Cooper’s kids will be assigned. It was my understanding yesterday at the meeting that design teams have not been formed at those schools. This shows a complete lack of regard for our kids when I am well aware of the fact that design teams for other schools like Pathfinder have already been meeting and planning. Please don’t let our Cooper kids fall through the cracks.
Everyone please write to our district, board and representative members to put pressure on them to ensure success for our kids during this trying time.
Molly Gras-Usry, Cooper PTSA Vice President
Board contact info is here; West Seattle rep Steve Sundquist‘s next community gathering is at 9 am next Wednesday at Coffee to a Tea in The Junction. One more note: We received e-mail today from someone else saying there’s a meeting at Cooper for the school’s families at 5:30 tonight, but have not yet been able to officially confirm that. Tonight also is the next school board meeting; no closure-related items are on the official agenda, but they might come up in the regular update from Superintendent Dr. Maria Goodloe-Johnson that always begins the meeting after about an hour of public comment. 3:15 PM UPDATE: The district has confirmed tonight’s meeting at Cooper but stresses it is ONLY for parents/guardians.
6:19 PM UPDATE: According to the “superintendent’s update” that is posted online as part of tonight’s School Board agenda, a Cooper design team has been formed and met today – here’s an excerpt from the presentation (see it here in its entirety) that is to be made at tonight’s board meeting:
Teams from the discontinuing programs or schools met this afternoon (Weds)
○ Cooper, Meany, TT Minor, Summit and AAA
□ These teams are working on addressing four needs:
1. Enrollment questions and issuesincluding an outreach plan to help affected families
understand their school and program options; and planning for and supporting visits
to primary receiving schools for affected families
2. Emotional support to the school community
3. End of year celebrationsto recognize that school community (these celebrations will
also be supported for Van Asselt, Genesee Hill, Mann and SBOC @ Old Hay as
4. Document and archiveschool and program artifacts and school records.
We added this to the WSB West Seattle Events calendar a few days ago, but in case you haven’t seen it yet – this Valentine’s Eve event is just a couple nights away – the official announcement about an event 6-10 pm this Friday nigh, benefiting the Chief Sealth High School music program:
Come join us for a night of entertainment, big band music, performed by the Chief Sealth Jazz and Combo band and the West Seattle Big Band. The evening includes a spaghetti dinner, and a live auction. Adults $15; Student with ASB $10; Children $7 (ages 5-12). Location: Chief Sealth High School at the Boren Building, 5950 Delridge Way Southwest, Seattle. For more information or to order tickets please call (206) 321-9003
Fundraiser season is in full swing, so make sure we have info on yours – if it’s not in our Events calendar, please e-mail us the who/what/when/where/why so we can add it! email@example.com – thanks!
As reported here three weeks ago, the Junction megaproject along SW Alaska between 41st and 42nd is continuing to make major progress, with developer Leon Capelouto telling WSB in that January 22nd report that Capco Plaza’s major retail tenants QFC and Office Depot are likely to open before fall, with the newly named Altamira Luxury Apartments opening in November. This morning, another sign of that progress — WSB contributing photojournalist Christopher Boffoli photographed the project’s crane being taken down:
We also received a note from neighbor Jaina that this work led to some vehicles being towed this morning along 41st, in an area she says got “no parking” signs on short notice – if you had a car parked in the area last night, you may want to check its status sooner rather than later! By the way, the crane is departing after more than 13 months – its arrival was big news on New Year’s Eve 2007, and this WSB report included photographs contributed by multiple sources, including Christopher, who got great shots from the top of nearby Alaska House, like this one:
The crane for Mural, Harbor Properties‘ megaproject on 42nd across from Jefferson Square, was taken down in November (WSB coverage here), and of course we’re not going to see a crane arrive for Fauntleroy Place until its new ownership is finalized (here’s our followup from two weeks ago).
If you were here over the weekend, you may recall quite the lively discussion following our report on a Sunday morning robbery at the Fauntleroy/Alaska 76 station. Some participants in the discussion mentioned hoping more details would become available, so we’ve been watching for the police report to be released. We obtained it late last night, and the details reveal this robbery was even more serious than we were told that day – read on:Read More
(2007 WSB photo of Fauntleroy Cove, looking toward Lincoln Park)
Since our report about last night’s Fauntleroy Community Association board meeting, there’s one more note from that neighborhood – requesting help ASAP on a hot topic that’s coming up right now in the Legislature – FCA president Bruce Butterfield has sent this from Judy Pickens, who works with Fauntleroy Creek among other local environmental issues:
SUPPORT ONGOING FUNDING FOR ‘THE STENCH’
Rep. Sharon Nelson from our district has introduced, with others, a bill that would provide ongoing funding for research and emergency response to sea-lettuce blooms in Puget Sound (“the stench”). E-mails in support of the bill from Fauntleroy residents could greatly increase its chance of passage.
HB 1231 (“Controlling saltwater algae”) and the Senate version (SB 5412) would assign 25 cents of every dollar that the state now collects from boat registrations for controlling algae in freshwater to doing the same in saltwater. This diversion would result in an estimated $140,000 per year for a grant program that cities and counties could tap for research on sea lettuce and emergency response when public-health concerns warrant haul-out of rotting seaweed. By tapping the existing revenue stream from a related program, the legislation would not require new funding. Read the full text of HB 1231 and analysis at http://apps.leg.wa.gov/billinfo/summary.aspx?year=2009&bill=1231.
The Washington State Lake Protection Association is opposing these bills on the grounds that sea lettuce is merely a nuisance, not a public-health threat comparable to algae growth in freshwater. I have updated FCA’s “white paper,” to emphasize Fauntleroy’s experience with hydrogen sulfide from rotting sea lettuce and included data from air-quality studies here. While lake advocates understandably don’t want to lose some of their funding, their position is ill-informed.
If you have a personal story to tell about “the stench” at its worst on a hot summer day in Fauntleroy, please send a quick e-mail to the committee chairmen:
House Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee
Rep. Brian Blake, chairman
Senate Environment, Water, and Energy Committee
Sen. Phil Rockefeller, chairman
Send a copy of your e-mail to Rep. Nelson at
apps.leg.wa.gov/memberemail/MailForm.aspx?Chamber=H&District=34&Position=2 (corrected from original publication)
For more information, please e-mail Judy_Pickens@msn.com
ADDED 1:53 PM: Since there seems to be an intense amount of interest in this, we’ve also uploaded the “white paper” mentioned above, which explains that this goes beyond what you might assume is a smelly natural phenomenon. Read it here.
Highlights from the WSB West Seattle Events calendar:
CHOCOLATE – “IT DOES THE BODY GOOD”: Really! At 2 pm, Emily Gonzalez, ND, will explain, at Pharmaca (WSB sponsor) in The Junction.
RELAY: 6:30 pm at Salty’s, you’re invited to the American Cancer Society Relay For Life of West Seattle Kickoff Party – looking ahead to the summertime event that combines fun with raising anti-cancer money and awareness. (More at westseattlerelay.org)
TRAILS: Tonight’s your night to help make Fauntleroy more walkable – and help design public art, as well as helping choose sites for wayfinding kiosks. It’s a community meeting with the West Seattle Trails Alliance, 6:30 pm at Fauntleroy Church.
ADDED WEDNESDAY AFTERNOON: Also happening tonight – opening night for West Seattle Montessori‘s (WSB sponsor) production of “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory,” 7 pm, West Seattle High School Theater, tickets $6. If you don’t see this in time – it’s playing tomorrow (Thursday) night too!
From tonight’s Fauntleroy Community Association board meeting: FCA leaders are ready for next week’s big neighborhood meeting, with three key items highlighting the agenda — the latest on the Fauntleroy Schoolhouse purchase, emergency-preparedness information from SNAP (Seattle Neighborhoods Actively Prepare), and the status of the Washington State Ferries Long-Range Plan (which no longer calls for a Fauntleroy dock expansion, as we first reported Jan. 31st, but still calls for Southworth traffic to continue through Fauntleroy TFN). Information also will be available on the Alaskan Way Viaduct replacement proposal’s status, The Kenney‘s redevelopment project, and the Fauntleroy Way “rechannelization” plan, among other community issues; the community gathering starts at 6:30 pm Wednesday 2/18 in the Fauntleroy Church Fellowship Hall, with presentations scheduled to start just after 7 pm. More toplines from tonight’s meeting, ahead:Read More
ORIGINAL 12:06 AM REPORT: Have received several notes about a helicopter circling in south West Seattle – and a report that it’s related to a King County Sheriff’s Office search in northwest Shorewood. Nothing obvious on the scanner yet but we’re checking. Reports so far have come from 35th and Roxbury, near Westwood Village, and Arbor Heights, so far. (Aside – when you hear a helicopter at this hour, it’s 90% likely it’s Guardian One, the law-enforcement helicopter that belongs to the county but also assists various city jurisdictions sometimes; TV-news helicopters do not fly at this hour unless it’s a gigantic story for which a pilot has been called in.) 12:16 AM: One comment from Arbor Heights mentions police on the ground in their neighborhood. 12:48 AM: Several neighbors report the helicopter has stopped. If we don’t succeed in getting official information tonight, we will seek it out first thing in the morning and publish an update soon as we get it. 2:10 AM UPDATE: Lt. Ron Smith at the Southwest Precinct provides the details: It involved a stolen car; three suspects were arrested after a search involving not only the King County Guardian One helicopter but also Seattle Police K-9, Seattle Police ACT team, and SPD patrol officers.