First, Alki; next, the rest of West Seattle: Wildlife Habitat party

(photo courtesy Eilene Hutchinson)
Years of hard work — neighbors’ efforts, volunteers’ coordination — culminated in a celebration today at Alki Bathhouse, as Alki was officially certified by the National Wildlife Federation as Community Wildlife Habitat. But that’s just the beginning, as volunteer Mary Quackenbush pointed out – next, a campaign to have all of West Seattle certified – so wherever you live in West Seattle, listen up later this year for how to get involved with that. “It’s really easy,” Mary said. But in the short run – it was time for the Alki community to celebrate – including project chair Dolly Vinal:

She received the certificate from NWF representative Courtney Sullivan – listen to the hearty round of applause echoing around Alki Bathhouse:

The NWF rep explained in this video clip — with some amazing numbers — what an achievement it was for Alki to get to this point, six years after launching the project:

Before the ceremony ended, other key team members who helped make the certification reality came forward – note in the foreground, one of the Alki Wildlife Habitat Project’s special touches, gourds like those hung at Seacrest Pier for the purple martin, as coordinated by Alki Kayak ToursKara Whittaker:

Making the rest of West Seattle a wildlife habitat might not be that hard, considering that groups from all over the peninsula were represented at today’s celebration — Friends of Lincoln Park (here’s our story on one of their recent work parties) had Cathy Davis and Sharon Baker on hand:

Sharon shared a card from the Healthy Parks, Healthy You project that notes you can burn 340 calories in an hour by digging, gardening and mulching – whether at a work party (listed weekly at or in your own yard. On the flip side of the calorie count, it wouldn’t have been a party without cake – this was donated by Alki Community Council vice president Randie Stone:

City Councilmember Tom Rasmussen (who chairs the council’s Parks Committee) joined the party too, receiving a certification sign for his own Alki-area property, joking that it might have been designated as wildlife habitat because he doesn’t mow enough and it just looks wild:

Next step – before that West Seattle-wide effort gets under way (likely in fall, Mary said, given the prime planting conditions then) — there’s a work party planned for next Saturday, 9 am-noon, at Seacrest, to get more mulching done on a native-plant area there that’s part of the AWHP.

1 Reply to "First, Alki; next, the rest of West Seattle: Wildlife Habitat party"

  • GreenSpaces May 25, 2009 (11:14 pm)

    This is great news! My goal since moving to High Point from Puget Ridge was to get this entire neighborhood certified as a wildlife habitat. My last property was (certiufied in 2003) and I know we can get this 120 acre neighborhood on board, too.

    Right now we have created “hummingbird alley” among some of our townhomes and we have 5 different birds feeding so far (very exciting for us since hummers are harder to make happy). We saw a yellow golfinch on our deck today, too.

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