day : 12/03/2009 16 results

The race for King County Executive: Larry Phillips talks to WSB

When we interviewed King County Council Chair Dow Constantine the day he declared his candidacy for King County Executive, the main angle was, West Seattleite goes for the top job. When you’re an “ultralocal” news organization, that tends to be the main spin – what’s the West Seattle angle? So we were a little surprised to get a fast followup call on behalf of the man who had thrown his hat in the proverbial ring a few weeks earlier – County Councilmember Larry Phillips, who lives in Magnolia, our peninsula’s semi-twin on the other side of the bay. Phillips is resolutely not conceding Constantine’s backyard to the hometown candidate, and wants you to start getting to know him, even with the primary still five months away. So he came to West Seattle recently to chat with WSB, and here’s the result:

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

Larry Phillips and Dow Constantine have more in common than the fact they’re both currently members of the King County Council and both currently running high-profile races for King County Executive.

Both also are lawyers and former state legislators. And – although the King County Executive and Council positions are now officially nonpartisan, so you won’t find this on the ballot – both are Democrats.

Both also made the point in conversations with WSB that they consider themselves fighters. (Phillips has a catch phrase: “Common sense, uncommon courage.”)

So, where’s the difference?

Read More

West Seattle scenes: Chief Sealth HS Multi-Cultural Night

Thanks to Dina Johnson for sharing photos from tonight’s Chief Sealth High School PTSA-presented Multi-Cultural Night. Raffles and a silent auction helped raise money toward the “wish list”:

But that was only part of it – student performances took centerstage:

Along with dancing and music – poetry too!

Besides cultural celebration and fundraising, tonight’s CSHS event included buffet dinner, too!

Quick update: 1 more Design Review meeting for Conner project

Tonight’s Design Review meeting for the Conner Homes (owner Charlie Conner, photo left) project at California/42nd/Alaska won’t be the last. After a somewhat rushed meeting — High Point Library had to close at 8 pm, no matter what — board members agreed the project wasn’t quite ready for final design-review approval. Board chair David Foster told WSB afterward that they’ll work with city planners to see if that last meeting can be scheduled sooner rather than later – perhaps in three weeks (which would be Thursday, April 2nd). More details later on the concerns, and kudos, expressed for the project, what board members want to see in that next review, and what else happens now. (Monday morning note: Full article will be published separately no later than noon this afternoon.)

Happening now: West Seattle Art Walk, till 9 pm

March 12, 2009 6:00 pm
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 |   Fun stuff to do | West Seattle Art Walk | WS culture/arts

From Alki Bathhouse in the northwest, to Click! Design That Fits (WSB sponsor) north-central, to Skylark (WSB sponsor) and Youngstown Arts Center in the northeast, to multiple Junction-vicinity venues in the middle, and on to The Kenney in the south, the West Seattle Art Walk is under way right now all over WS. Here’s the map. See highlights – with art samples and venue details – on the official Art Walk blog. It lasts till 9 pm –great night to be out, have fun! (And if you take pix, we’d love to share ’em!)

West Seattle Crime Watch: Storage unit, cars broken into

Two break-in reports this afternoon. First, from longtime WSBer Pelicans:

Got a call yesterday afternoon from Public Storage on Avalon. My unit and at least about 29 others were broken into overnight on Tuesday/Wednesday. From the info I received, the theives got into the building by breaking through an outside door and into a stairwell. The went up the 4th floor and started jimmy-ing storage unit doors. In many of them, including mine, nothing was taken. The police told the managers it was as if they were looking for something. There were boxes labeled ‘clothes’, so that was probably not what they wanted.

We are checking with police on that one; Pelicans says the culprits were reportedly caught on camera. Meantime, a note from the south end of Beach Drive:

My cars were broken into last night. Unusual for my location. I live on Beach Drive SW, north of Lincoln Park. Nothing valuable stolen (except my treasured flashlight)

ADDED 6:03 PM: Thanks to the WSBers who let us know about police activity in Seaview this afternoon, around 45th and Raymond (map). It cleared out before we got there to check it out but this evening police say it was a reported residential burglary – nobody in custody so far.

ADDED 6:12 PM: And word of more car break-ins – this report from Gary Dawson in Fauntleroy:

Someone got into two different cars of two different addresses on SW Henderson between Fauntleroy Way SW and 45th Ave SW last night. Classic homeowner mistake, neither had locked the car doors. Two cars that we know of so far. We are talking to the neighbors. A Garmin portable GPS was taken from one of the cars, which is parked in a driveway next to the house with a very bright motion activated light over it. Nothing taken from the other as far as is known. Reported to SPD.

Annual Seattle Race Conference will be in West Seattle this year

March 12, 2009 3:56 pm
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 |   West Seattle news

Thanks to Delridge Neighborhood District Coordinator Ron Angeles for forwarding the word: The annual Seattle Race Conference will be in West Seattle this year — October 24th at South Seattle Community College‘s Brockey Center. The theme: Where Goes the Neighborhood? Community Displacement and Equitable Development. The website’s not updated yet but information will be forthcoming at

Status check: Idled West Seattle Whole Foods project

Some who closely watch the Fauntleroy/Alaska/39th site that has become better known as “Hole-In-The-Ground Foods” have pointed out that more of the idled construction equipment has moved off the site in recent days and weeks. So we launched a new round of checks, a month and a half since it was revealed the Fauntleroy Place site is being sold. First – we went to the Ledcor Construction site office across the street.

They’re still open (though prominently posted as “not hiring”), they describe the project as “on hold,” and they say the equipment was moved to another job site where they needed it. Next – a check with Seattle Capital, which spoke with WSB for our late January report; no callback yet – the main contact is out of town. After that – a check with BlueStar, the original developer. Eric Radovich says they cannot comment on where things stand now, but they are still hopeful they will be chosen to continue with the project under its new ownership – and he reiterates that their other two West Seattle projects, Spring Hill (5020 California) and Gateway Center (the optioned Huling Buick site immediately across from Fauntleroy Place), are up in the air depending on what happens with Fauntleroy Place. We also contacted Whole Foods‘ regional spokesperson Vicki Foley, who replied with this:

I contacted our Regional Construction Project Manager and he said that although we know that the ownership of the project is most likely changing, Whole Foods Market has a fully executed lease with benchmark dates that we are expecting the LLC to honor regardless of ownership.

That would be Fauntleroy Place LLC, still in county records as the official owner of the site, whose current “governing persons” are listed in online state records as Seattle Capital and BAJ Capital (owned by Christopher NeVan but dissolved earlier this month, per state corporation records).

Fauntleroy Way repaving: Stretching further than 1st reported

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Perusing bid notices in the Daily Journal of Commerce, we happened onto the advertisement for bids on the Fauntleroy Way repaving project, published last week. It’s been described all along as stretching from SW Alaska to California Avenue SW, provided full funding for that stretch could be found – but now it looks like they’re bidding for work to continue several blocks south/west of California SW – here’s an excerpt:

PROJECT LOCATION: Fauntleroy Way SW – SW Alaska St to SW Holly St

PROJECT DESCRIPTION: Work includes concrete panel replacement, pavement removal, pavement base repair, asphalt planing, HMA resurfacing, drainage improvements, striping, traffic loops and other miscellaneous work

This project includes an Additive Alternate Bid as follows:

Work on Fauntleroy Way SW south of the California Avenue SW intersection which includes concrete panel replacement, pavement removal, pavement base repair, asphalt planing, HMA resurfacing, drainage improvements, striping, traffic loops and other miscellaneous work.

ESTIMATE: The Engineer’s Estimate for this Project is $3,900,000 to $4,700,000.

Again, the full bid advertisement can be seen here. We have a message in to SDOT to ask about the added stretch, including whether any rechannelization is to be done in that section; most recent estimate for the start of work was May. ADDED 3:43 PM: Here’s the response from Rick Sheridan at SDOT; our question was as follows: Does this mean they did secure funding for the entire Alaska-California stretch (which was not a sure bet a while back), and if it stretches to Holly, is any reconfiguration planned for those added blocks?:

SDOT fully expects to pave Fauntleroy Way SW from SW Alaska Street to California Avenue SW. If the bids are favorable, we may be able to further improve the road by exercising an option to pave between California Avenue SW and SW Holly Street. Fauntleroy from California Avenue SW to SW Holly Street features one lane in each direction and a center turn lane, and no changes are planned from its current configuration.

Even more details about Alki Point sidewalk construction

We reported late yesterday that the project is set to start next Monday. Now, the city’s sent more details, including how long it will last – and as SDOT’s Sam Woods speculated last week, the Beach Drive end will indeed be the starting point for work crews — read on:Read More

Also happening tonight: Parks Board in West Seattle, and more

March 12, 2009 11:26 am
|    Comments Off on Also happening tonight: Parks Board in West Seattle, and more
 |   High Point | Safety | West Seattle Art Walk | West Seattle news | West Seattle online | West Seattle parks | West Seattle schools | Westwood

In addition to the Conner project Design Review meeting, lots of notable events tonight. They’re all on the Events calendar — where you’ll find the full list — but here’s an extra shoutout for a few more:

WEST SEATTLE ART WALK: The map/info link will be in the sidebar at right till the event’s over tonight, but if you missed it: 6-9 pm tonight, 40 venues all over West Seattle, and many offer treats and special deals for Art Walk-night visitors and shoppers. Artists highlighted here; printable venue map here.

PARKS BOARD IN WEST SEATTLE: The regular twice-monthly meeting of the Seattle Parks Board (whose chair and co-chair are both West Seattleites) is coming here tonight: West Seattle Golf Course clubhouse, 7 pm. The agenda includes two items of WS-specific interest — the city’s Golf Master Plan and the Seacrest dock renovations for the Elliott Bay Water Taxi (which starts its season April 5). Briefing papers are all linked from the Parks Board page.

SNAP AT WEST SEATTLE LIBRARY: Find out how to make sure your family and neighborhood are ready for anything. Seattle Neighbors Actively Prepare has a free how-to at West Seattle Library (Admiral) at 6:30 tonight.

GENEALOGY AT SOUTHWEST LIBRARY: A genealogy librarian is coming to Southwest Library at 5:30 tonight to show you how to use the Internet to find out more about your family history. It’s free but you have to call to register; number, and more info, all here.

HIGH POINT NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION QUARTERLY MEETING: 6 pm at Elizabeth House, 3201 SW Graham. The theme: “Doing more with less impact on the environment,” according to HPNA president Andrew Mead‘s meeting announcement on the HPNA site.

CHIEF SEALTH HIGH SCHOOL MULTICULTURAL NIGHT: Food, performances, silent auction, and more, all presented by the CSHS PTSA, 6 pm.

Tonight: Your chance to speak out on Junction megaproject

Tonight could be the last Design Review session for Conner Homes‘ two-building, 7-story project at California/Alaska/42nd, and that means potentially one of the last in-person public-comment opportunities on the first major redevelopment project in the heart of The Junction. If you missed our report Tuesday, here’s the link to the presentation that’ll be shown tonight; the meeting’s at 6:30 pm at High Point Library (map). Lots of other major events tonight too – please check the WSB West Seattle-wide Events calendar for the full list.

Welcoming a new WSB sponsor: Brunette Mix in The Junction

Today we welcome one of our newest sponsors, Brunette Mix in The Junction. Brunette Mix is both a salon and a retail space featuring art — as owner BJ puts it, “creating an atmosphere of the senses.” She features lotions, scents, and clothing that’s comfortable and easy to wear. The idea comes from the first salon she worked at back East. She’s wanted to pursue the idea of a shop and salon since then, but she was only able to put both together at this West Seattle location. BJ explains that the “atmosphere of the senses” in Brunette Mix is a natural outgrowth of how she and her staff interact with their customers. They’ve learned their clients’ likes and dislikes, and that in turn gives way to gift suggestions, for example, like this past Christmas, when BJ said many of her clients’ husbands were able to come in and pick out just the right gift! BJ says that helping customers with personal gift-suggestion touch gives her as much satisfaction as receiving a gift herself. Whether you’re there to buy a gift or get your hair done, BJ says her goal is to be able to not only make you look better, but also feel better as well when you leave. Brunette Mix is also a stop on the monthly West Seattle Art Walk. For this month’s Art Walk – happening TONIGHT, 6-9 pm – the featured artist is Ruth Mikos ( Brunette Mix will display Ruth’s photos of old circus dolls. You can find Brunette Mix at 4306 SW Oregon (just west of California; here’s a map); phone 206-932-2401; online at Thanks to Brunette Mix for joining the WSB sponsor team, all shown here with info on how to join them!

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A signature quilt, and a memorable evening

That one-of-a-kind quilt is hanging near the door of the Fellowship Hall at Fauntleroy Church – but it’s in the market for a new owner. Your WSB co-publishers got the story behind it Wednesday night while talking to Little Pilgrim School director Lorrie Cook after our guest appearance in the church’s “Re-creating Community in Our Day” series:

Thanks to Kevin McClintic for the photo, and thanks to everybody who came out to share in the chat, and to Rev. David Kratz and his church for inviting us; next Wednesday at 7 pm, Diane Shiner speaks on “The Interplay of Environment and Community.” Now back to that quilt: School parent Krista Withers designed and crafted it, and it has a square for each student in Little Pilgrim School, designed in consultation with the students – each one met with her to choose fabric, designate an animal, and apply their “signature.” It’s in the tradition of signature/friendship quilts dating as far back as the Civil War, created as raffle items to raise money for soldiers — now, it’s being raffled to raise money for the school, and the raffle happens May 3rd at the Little Pilgrim Spring Parent Workshop. Tickets are just $1 each, six for $5, and if you don’t have friends/family at the school from whom you can buy ’em, contact Lorrie Cook at or 932-5600.

34th District Democrats endorse Constantine, bridge name

From Wednesday night’s 34th District Democrats meeting, Bill Schrier sent that photo with word that West Seattle’s largest political organization “overwhelmingly endorsed” King County Council Chair Dow Constantine in his run for King County Executive (which is now officially a nonpartisan position), and contributed $3,434.34 to his campaign. Earlier in his political career, Constantine served as 34th District State Senator and Representative. We interviewed him the day he announced his Executive candidacy (see the story here); we have since interviewed his major opponent (so far), County Councilmember Larry Phillips, and plan to publish that story later today. P.S. from tonight’s 34th DDs’ meeting: They also heard from two other West Seattleites who you’ll see on the ballot this fall, City Council candidates David Ginsberg and Dorsol Plants. And the group endorsed a resolution to rename the West Seattle Bridge in honor of former City Councilmember Jeanette Williams (we first told you about the naming campaign back in January).

Mayor … Duke?

He’s said it before (we found a 2005 reference) and now he’s apparently saying it again; Duke’s Chowder House restaurant chain owner Duke Moscrip (whose locations include one on Alki) says he’s thinking about a mayoral run. Here’s part of a group e-mail he sent:

I have recently been encouraged to run for Mayor of Seattle and I am seriously considering the idea. Many of you have said that I have “always acted like the Mayor so might as well give you the job.” All kidding aside, my interest and motive in doing so will be clear to you when you begin to see my writings on the issues in our City and State. Please take this opportunity to go take a look on the page created at Facebook. I encourage you to comment on my ideas and/or my potential campaign.

Here’s the Facebook link; there’s a Twitter account set up too (so far, just pointing to two links on the FB page). So, is he truly serious? We put in a call; Moscrip called back late Wednesday night and left voice mail saying he’s “inclined” to run but hasn’t made up his mind yet. We hope to chat with him more in-depth soon. Those who HAVE filed their intention to campaign, besides incumbent Mayor Nickels: James Donaldson (the former Sonic also is on the council-candidate list) and Norman Sigler.

Movie previews: 2 days till this Saturday night’s special events

That’s the trailer for the ORIGINAL “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory,” a family fave that’s FREE on the big screens in the West Seattle Christian Church Activity Center this Saturday night, for the second of three Winter Movies on the Wall – that’s INDOORS, mind you – presented by Junction merchants (and co-sponsors including WSB). Movie’s at 7, doors open at 5:30, bring a chair and a donation for the West Seattle Food Bank.

Meantime, Saturday night’s also showtime at the Admiral Theater, not just for the singalong edition of “Mamma Mia,” but also for this couple to say their vows onstage for real:

(photo courtesy Melodie Anderson)
We’ve been telling you about Melodie Anderson and John Babcock‘s wedding right before “Mamma Mia” at The Admiral, 7:30 pm Saturday – Admiral entertainment director Dinah Brein McClellan put out the call for couples after she and her team thought it might be fun to enhance the movie’s romantic theme with real-life love. She’s providing the nondenominational minister; Sugar Rush Baking Company is providing wedding cake and mini-cupcakes; Cafe Revo‘s donating a wedding dinner for four; and a secret donor’s throwing in a Chelan vacation-home stay. (Anything else for the happy couple or the fun festivities? Let Dinah know at You don’t have to bring anything but good cheer – it’s all part of the $8 ticket price for the “Mamma Mia” singalong (song list here; we’re thinking “Take a Chance on Me” is particularly apropos). Tickets are available online.