day : 10/03/2009 16 results

Junction crime update, including latest on Steve Bushaw murder

(2/1/09 photo by WSB contributing photojournalist Christopher Boffoli)
An update on the unsolved murder of Steve Bushaw was part of what the Junction Neighborhood Organization heard during tonight’s lightly attended meeting – the many who have voiced concern about recent Junction crime, but didn’t attend the meeting, missed a chance for candid Q/A with the #2 boss from the Southwest Precinct, Lt. Steve Paulsen. One big question came from JuNO president Erica Karlovits: What if anything could he say about the Bushaw case, 5 1/2 weeks after the 26-year-old was shot and killed on Super Bowl night? Lt. Paulsen said, “This was not a random attack … homicide detectives have a lot of good leads and it’s progressing. Sometimes these take a lot of time, even if you know who a suspect is, to develop probable cause …” And he reiterated that there’s no evidence it was random: “Every indication is that these people knew each other.” The absence of stranger-on-stranger violence was a theme in his general discussion, and the Q/A, about Junction-area crime. Car prowls continue to be the top problem, but he said they were down in February – just under 90, compared to just under 130 in January, and the March rate is even lower so far, with just two reported to police in the past few weeks. He mentioned a couple of recent arrests may have played a part in getting the worst offenders off the street.

He also was asked about trouble with “night establishments” and drunk driving, especially given what happened last night:

(Monday evening photo by Mark Ammann)
Lt. Paulsen reiterated that DUI is suspected in last night’s crash, in which the 35-year-old driver of that pickup hit 13 other cars (mostly parked) along the east side of California SW in the heart of The Junction’s business district (previous WSB coverage here). It was also mentioned that a suspected drunk driver hit a pole on that same side of California just north of Oregon several hours later (911 logs confirm a motor-vehicle accident call at that location at 1:52 am today). More of tonight’s discussion about Junction crime, just ahead:Read More

2 Sen. McDermott-sponsored civil-rights bills win Senate votes

Late night for legislators in Olympia. Senate Democrats have sent word that two bills with sponsors including West Seattle State Sen. Joe McDermott have passed: SB 5688, extending “full marital benefits” to domestic partnerships, and SB 5952, which, as described in a news release, “add(s) ‘transgendered’ to the definition of sexual orientation that is in the state’s hate crime statute.” Both have companion bills that have to be voted on by the full State House — you can check their status through the pages for each Senate bill (linked to their numbers above).

Heart On My Sleeve: Fashion, and love, from Pigeon Point

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

Seattle could and should be “the independent fashion capital of the world.”

That’s the bold – yet not boastful – declaration of the three men who comprise Heart On My Sleeve, a fashion (and design, and music, and more) business based in a deceptively drab Pigeon Point duplex, a stitch away from the West Seattle Bridge.

Johnathan Oliver, 23, is a Navy veteran. Shelton Sampson, 25, is a former UW football player. Art B, 32, has a music focus.

Focused on fashion creations from recycled clothing, Heart On My Sleeve started 2 years ago when Johnathan and Shelton met in Hawaii, where John was working on a production of the “Lion King” musical with which Shelton’s sister happened to be involved. They became fast friends and business partners, hatching the HOMS idea and coming up with the logo in a Hawaii Starbucks – presaging their eventual headquarters in Starbucks’ hometown (how they got from there to here is a whole ‘nother tangent for another time’ — in short, Shelton was from here, and finally convinced Johnathan to move).

If you haven’t heard of Heart On My Sleeve before, that’s what they’re trying to hurdle now. They are working around the clock, getting by, but confident they’re on the brink of that one big breakthrough.

They’ve gotten attention already. When we saw a KING5 feature a while back (watch it here) — our ears perked at the mention of “West Seattle,” but we couldn’t find contact information online. Someone eventually sent it to us after an online discussion, but it fell through the proverbial cracks. Then Johnathan sent a note just yesterday – along with some files including portfolio-style photos of their work:

So let’s get to what their creations are all about. The heart of what they do is recycling: Here’s Shelton, for example, with a work in progress on one of the mannequins standing in the room where I chatted with him, John, and Art this morning:

That started with a jacket – something that might have come from a thrift shop, or a donation. Then it’s examined with a fresh eye – a vision – and becomes the foundation of something completely new. The knot you see around the waist is for sizing – it’s a device they use if they’re consulting with a client.

The clothing is major, but Heart On My Sleeve doesn’t just design.

Read More

Junction Plaza Park updates: New website, more pledges

Quick update from the Junction Neighborhood Organization meeting that’s under way right now: A new website for the project has just gone live – you can see it at That’s where you can get the forms to pledge volunteer time, which is the big push right now – JuNO president Erica Karlovits, who’s co-chairing Friends of Junction Plaza Park, says the first West Seattle Farmers’ Market tabling this past Sunday collected “two pages of volunteer pledges.” They’re trying to gather as many pledges as possible before the early April deadline to apply for a city $100,000 Neighborhood Matching Fund grant to apply toward the $350,000 cost of finishing the park (on the northwest corner of Alaska/42nd in The Junction). Susan Melrose of the West Seattle Junction Association is here too and says that if fundraising and all else goes well this year, construction could start early next year.

Looking for work? Liberty Bell Printing offers free resume copies

A freebie too hot to just keep in the WSB Forums’ Freebies, Deals, Sales sectionMichael Hoffman at Liberty Bell Printing (WSB sponsor) in The Junction is offering free resume printing:

We know it’s hard out there and Liberty Bell Printing wants to help. Now through the end of March, bring in your resume ready to copy and we will give you 20 FREE copies on stationery paper. Tell us you saw it on West Seattle Blog and will will give you five more FREE for a total of 25!

That’s black/white printing, by the way. Liberty Bell is on the east side of California, a few doors north of Edmunds (map), open Mondays-Fridays, 9 am-5:30 pm.

Presentation now viewable for Conner project’s Thursday review

We showed you new images like that one last Thursday (WSB coverage here) when Conner Homes brought the “alley vacation” portion of its Junction megaproject (California/Alaska/42nd) back before the Seattle Design Commission. Now, two days before its next Design Review meeting here in West Seattle (6:30 pm Thursday @ High Point Library), that entire planned presentation is available online – download it here (15 MB PDF). Many are images we’ve shown you during and after the past few Design Commission presentations (courtesy of architects Weber Thompson), but there’s lots of additional detail you’ll want to see if you’re interested in this closely scrutinized two-building project at the heart of The Junction. Here’s another image, showing the east building on the Alaska/42nd corner:

Got mad design skills? The Junction needs you

March 10, 2009 2:25 pm
|    Comments Off on Got mad design skills? The Junction needs you
 |   West Seattle businesses | West Seattle news

Just sent around by Susan Melrose from the West Seattle Junction Association (a guest speaker at tonight’s Junction Neighborhood Organization meeting, 6:30 pm at Ginomai, 42nd/Genesee), so we thought we’d share:


West Seattle Junction GRAPHIC DESIGNER

Organization Background:
The West Seattle Junction Association (WSJA) is a small non-profit organization whose mission is to develop, encourage, promote and participate in activities that enhance a healthy economic, social and environmental climate for the West Seattle Junction community.

The West Seattle Junction Association has completed an initiative that provided a comprehensive, cohesive, and strategic approach to branding The Junction. We have a new logo, tagline, website, and other supporting work. We are seeking a West Seattle business, person, or team to get to know our brand and work with committee and event leaders to help implement and ensure a consistent brand.

Scope of work:
WSJA seeks a professional to be the organization’s “go to” graphic designer. This person/team would provide brand guidance and graphic design to committee and event leaders as needed. Examples of work produced:

1. Design of posters and supporting materials for Summer Fest, Car Show and other events.
2. Design and language content for advertising pieces.
3. Design of Live Local materials including bumper stickers, t-shirts, etc.

Please submit your letter of interest, portfolio and hourly rate by March 18th at NOON. Make sure to include examples of posters and other promotion materials. Please submit via email Online portfolio is very helpful.

Noisemaker-wielding protesters return to West Seattle

We saw them this morning on our way to a story interview – didn’t get a photo, didn’t see them when we headed back the other way, but perhaps they were just on break (we’re checking again now) because we have since received several e-mails (thank you!) asking about them, and that’s why we’re mentioning it: The Pacific Northwest Regional Council of Carpenters was protesting another West Seattle worksite, with drums and cowbells in addition to picket signs. This time, it’s the Avalon Center construction site at 35th/Avalon; the signs said they’re protesting Rain City, a contractor firm. Last time they were spotted here, a week and a half ago (WSB coverage here), they were protesting a scaffolding company at an apartment building undergoing renovations south of The Junction. (Update – no sign of them again at 1:45 pm, so we’re concluding at this point they’re done for the day.)

Lobbying for jobs’ sake: Local tourism advocates visit Olympia

Greg Whittaker of Alki Kayak Tours took, and sent, that photo after a day of lobbying in Olympia on behalf of tourism. He says everybody in the photo is from the 34th Legislative District — which includes West Seattle, White Center, and Vashon — and explained: “We talked with (Sen.) Joe McDermott and (Rep.) Sharon Nelson promoting support of our industry which provides jobs and tax revenue for much-needed programs (that) are going to be receiving huge cutbacks.” Two of the tourism-related bills in the Legislature this year are House Bill 1290 and Senate Bill 5265, which would enable King County to create “tourism promotion areas” – right now, it’s the only county in the state that’s not allowed to create such areas, which can raise tourism-promotion dollars through hotel/motel taxes. ADDED WEDNESDAY: One more photo:

Fauntleroy ferry riders: Spring schedule officially announced

March 10, 2009 11:52 am
|    Comments Off on Fauntleroy ferry riders: Spring schedule officially announced
 |   Fauntleroy | Transportation | West Seattle news

It kicks in Sunday, March 29, and will include the addition of three-boat weekend service on the Fauntleroy-Vashon-Southworth route. Full Washington State Ferries announcement here; see the schedule online here.

$9 million in grants for Seattle Public Schools

March 10, 2009 9:57 am
|    Comments Off on $9 million in grants for Seattle Public Schools
 |   West Seattle schools

The official announcement was made this morning — $9 million in grants for the budget-crunched district, with the lion’s share coming from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and Boeing among three other contributors. Read on for the official news release sent by the Alliance for Education:Read More

Happening tonight: Junction, Admiral, Fauntleroy gatherings

March 10, 2009 9:22 am
|    Comments Off on Happening tonight: Junction, Admiral, Fauntleroy gatherings
 |   Neighborhoods | West Seattle news

If you live in the vicinity of any one of these neighborhoods, tonight’s your monthly chance to see what’s happening and – if you choose – how to get involved. In The Junction, the Junction Neighborhood Organization (JuNO) meets at 6:30 pm at Ginomai, 42nd and Genesee (map), with the agenda including Junction Plaza Park and area crime (Lt. Steve Paulsen from the Southwest Precinct and Susan Melrose of the West Seattle Junction Association will both be there). The other two meetings are both at 7 – Admiral Neighborhood Association‘s agenda (Admiral Church basement meeting room) includes presentations by two city council candidates, Dorsol Plants (of Highland Park) and David Bloom, and the Fauntleroy Community Association (in the old schoolhouse) will discuss topics including the upcoming FCA annual meeting and the state of the Washington State Ferries Master Plan. All these meetings are open to the public — even if you just want to sit in the corner and listen.

Gatewood church up for sale again

View Larger Map

The big brick church at California/Othello (map) is in the market for its third new owner in less than three years. Then-Gatewood Baptist Church was sold in September 2006 to a developer as part of a $3.2 million package including the former church school to the east (now art/craft studios) and church-owned property across California that became a “micropermitted” townhouse cluster. The developer sold the church building to Seattle International Church six months later for $1.8 million; now, two years after that deal, it’s on the market for $2.1 million. It’s not the only church building for sale in West Seattle right now; Eastside Christian Assembly in the Triangle remains listed at $2.6 million.

West Seattle Weather Watch: So long, snow; sun – hello

March 10, 2009 5:43 am
|    Comments Off on West Seattle Weather Watch: So long, snow; sun – hello
 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle weather

(newest image from the city’s “live” cam on The Bridge, looking east)
At least, that’s what this morning’s forecast says. It did get into the 20s, so you might have some scraping to do this morning if you park on the street. No city road/bus trouble; check the “latest incidents” links on our Traffic page if you want to make sure all’s well before you leave.

4 days till wedding-and-a-movie at The Admiral; you’re invited!

No, you don’t have to bring a gift. Just be there for the “Mamma Mia” singalong movie showing Saturday night. As reported here last week, 64-year-old Melodie Anderson and 60-year-old John Babcock are getting married onstage at The Admiral at 7:30 Saturday night, right before the movie, as the culmination of a love story that’s stretched across 18 years and two states, starting as an off-and-on involvement following their meeting at a holistic-health-practitioner school in San Diego, then intensifying when John followed Melodie to Seattle, where she had moved to be closer to her grandchildren. Admiral entertainment director Dinah Brein-McClellan and her team hatched the idea of an onstage wedding to go with the romantic theme of “Mamma Mia,” put out the call for interested couples, and really fell in love with John and Melodie’s story, which took a dramatic turn two years ago, as Dinah relates:

In 2007, Melodie discovered she had cancer and through it all, John never left her side. “You really see what someone is made of when you go through something like that – bald head, throwing up, he was there for me.”

The experience made the couple realize that life is precious and short and they were ready to ‘seal the deal.’ The couple got a marriage license, but due to the recession and some financial losses on properties they owned they were forced to put a wedding on hold and soon the license lapsed. When Melodie told John about the offer that the Admiral had on the table, he was a bit dubious. “Melodie is really spontaneous, unorthodox and outgoing, very different from me but that’s why I love her,” he said.

To celebrate John and Melodie’s wedding, so far, The Admiral is providing a nondenominational minister, Coffee to a Tea with Sugar is donating a wedding cake plus 200 mini-cupcakes for the audience, Cafe Revo is giving the wedding party a celebration dinner for 4, and an anonymous donor is offering a stay at a Lake Chelan vacation home. (Got anything to add? Dinah’s still looking for someone who can contribute wedding decorations and flowers – You can be part of the fun (and sing your heart out afterward) just by going to Mamma Mia! Saturday night, 7:30 pm, $8/ticket, available online at Brown Paper Tickets.

West Seattle scenes: Looking back; looking up

Thanks to Manuel for pointing out the “newest” Seattle Municipal Archives addition uploaded to Flickr – it’s dated 1900, with the address listed as 1613 44th Avenue SW (known in 1900 as Olympia Avenue). Here’s the area today, from Google Street View:

View Larger Map

Though that house looks a lot like the one next to the grocery store in the 1900 photo, county property records show nothing older on the block than 1909, so it’s apparently just a coincidence. As for the store, it may have been the first one in West Seattle — the definitive account of West Seattle history from 1851-1987, West Side Story, opens Part I, Chapter 3, with a poem titled “The Birth of West Seattle” that is attributed to “John D. McGee, proprietor of the first grocery store in the town of West Seattle, and part-time poet.” (You can find many more historic photos of West Seattle and the rest of the city in the Municipal Archives; thousands are on the city website, and 600+ on Flickr.)

One other photo to share this early morning, from Alki:

Iris Chamberlain is previously from back east and thinks this might be the first bald eagle she’s ever seen – she e-mailed to share the photo after seeing the eagle in and around the tree across from Alki Bakery.