month : 08/2009 375 results

“Sports-challenged”? South Seattle Comm. College event for you

August 31, 2009 10:49 pm
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle schools | WS & Sports

South Seattle Community College (which you of course know is in West Seattle) isn’t just a place for vocational courses, 2-year degrees, other traditional community-college offerings … not only do they offer 4-year degrees too and some studies you might not expect, they also offer one-time events and continuing-ed classes, like what’s coming up next week with FSN Northwest reporter Jen Mueller – “Talk Sporty, Lite,” described by the folks at SSCC as a “happy hour” event previewing a workshop Mueller will teach in October for the “sports-challenged” who want to be able to talk sports with friends/family. It’s at 5:30 pm September 9th, $20/person including appetizers and wine-tasting (gotta be 21 for that last part) – read on for the rest of the announcement from the college: Read More

West Seattle from the sky: Local pilot shares 2 views

These photos were taken and shared by Gatewood pilot Long Nguyen, suggesting it “would be cool for folks in WS to see their neighborhood from the air.” He was on a training flight with a student in early August when he took the top photo, which he sent us first, adding this one in a followup exchange:

For a larger view of the 1st photo, go here; for a larger view of the second one, go here.

Seattle Public Schools teachers’ union ratifies contract

August 31, 2009 7:40 pm
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle schools

With a little more than a week to go till school, the Seattle Education Association announced tonight that its members ratified a one-year contract in their vote late today. (Contract details on the SEA website.) School is scheduled to start a week from Wednesday. ADDED 10:06 PM: Haven’t seen an official news release from SEA yet, but Seattle Public Schools just sent one – read on:Read More

Tomorrow: Alki picnic with Caspar Babypants and The Not-Its

Tomorrow night’s Alki Community Picnic has been in the WSB Events calendar for a while but without the extra details we just got from Mary Pat Byington at Alki Community Center, (5817 SW Stevens), where all the fun is happening tomorrow afternoon/evening: It starts at 4:30 pm — free food and a “jump toy” for the kids – plus music from Caspar Babypants (aka West Seattle-residing rock star Chris Ballew of The Presidents of the United States of America) at 6 pm, followed by The Not-Its (shown above in a clip from last year’s Halloween party at Full Tilt Ice Cream in White Center). Mary Pat adds, “Please bring a can food donation for Northwest Harvest.” (That regional organization distributes supplies to local food banks.)

Update: West Seattle kids awaiting backpacks, clothes for school

Just a little more than a week to go till school starts – and dozens of West Seattle kids still need your help. West Seattle Helpline is sponsoring WSB to help get the word out about its backpack and clothing drives – the photo above is from one of the recent distribution days. We checked with Helpline executive director Anna Fern today for an update:

We have given away over 130 backpacks filled with school supplies. So we gave away about 40 backpacks and school clothes at the Clothesline each day during our three day give away.

We now have a waiting list for 47 more backbacks. Seattle Schools start next (week) so it still is not too late to donate…by calling the Helpline 206.932.4357 or donating through Paypal on our website.

Our next focus is going to be on clothing drives for items for school age children. We are desperate for more! Each child/student can take up to three outfits plus a coat or a pair of shoes. You can see what an incredible amount of clothing this translates to.

Call the Helpline number above, or contact them online here, for info on how to donate clothing; you also can drop off backpacks at Coffee at the Heights (WSB sponsor) in Sunrise Heights or Capers in The Junction.

Followup: Driver identified in deadly West Seattle Bridge crash

For those who have asked – the driver killed in the Friday morning rollover on the westbound side of the West Seattle Bridge highrise has now been publicly identified: The King County Medical Examiner’s Office says the driver was 27-year-old Joshua Bowen. The police account of the Friday morning crash says witnesses saw Bowen’s car speeding, and that he was not wearing a seat belt. No one else was in the car. A comment added an hour ago after our Friday morning report, by “A friend,” says: “The driver involved in this crash will be deeply missed by his family, friends, and acquaintances. He was a good person and he is no longer with us. Rest in Peace.”

What we’ve found out about what sounded like gunshots

One of the things we do here at WSB HQ besides produce and publish the site is answer e-mail, Facebook and Twitter messages, phone calls, etc., that may never result in actual articles. However, if we get more than a few notes about something, that’s usually a signal we’d better publish the answer here too. Today’s example: About a dozen notes have come in regarding what sounded like gunshots just before 1 am today in the general Junction vicinity. We were monitoring the scanner then, as usual, and did not hear anything suggesting that evidence of gunshots were found; the past few nights, in fact, in other areas of West Seattle including ours, what was reported as possible gunshots turned out to be fireworks. But just to be sure, we have checked with the Southwest Precinct, and so far two lieutenants there have both told us no evidence has been found to confirm any shots actually were fired (no cars or homes hit, no casings found, nothing in the “significant incidents” briefing from earlier shifts; and we can confirm from online 911 medic/fire logs that there were no aid calls). As always, questions/breaking-news tips welcome 24/7 – here are all the ways to reach us.

Monday midday links: Author’s NYT review; plum-picking on TV

“CROW PLANET” REVIEWED BY NEW YORK TIMES: The NYT Sunday book reviews comprise arguably the most prestigious showcase in America for an author – and Gatewood author Lyanda Lynn Haupt‘s new book “Crow Planet” has just made it there. Here’s the link to this past weekend’s review. We wrote about Haupt and her book just last month – here’s our story; you can also follow her more-frequent writings at her site The Tangled Nest.

COMMUNITY HARVEST PLUM-PICKING STORY ON TV: We’ve also featured Community Harvest of Southwest Seattle and its “donate your tree” volunteer fruit harvests, and now they’ve made it onto TV too – the story resulting from the KING5 visit to Margaret‘s house last Monday finally aired Friday – here’s the link (video). CHoSS is still seeking volunteers, so they can pick even more of the fruit-laden trees that have been “donated” (the fruit goes to local food banks) – here’s how to sign up!

Closest thing we have to flying fish: Those leaping salmon

They’re the talk of the fishing community; we mentioned them last week, and now we have photos: WSB contributing photojournalist Matt Durham sends photos of some of the 5 million pink salmon that have been swarming the area, many leaping from the water as they go. That photo’s from the eastern Duwamish Waterway, as is this one:

Separate from catching the pink salmon on camera in the Duwamish yesterday – where fishing’s not allowed (check the rules here) – Matt and son Jack fished Lincoln Park, where the younger member of the duo made this milestone catch:

Matt explains:

Sunday Jack Durham, age 10, landed his first salmon, a 7-pound pink salmon. Jack has worked the shores of Lincoln Park for 6 years, casting everything from Kastmasters to plugs and finally hooked this fish on a pink spoon. Lincoln Park has been a shoulder-to-shoulder fishing experience the last three weeks. Fishing can be absolutely hot with nearly every angler hooking a salmon; an hour later the bite dries to nothing. The favored lure is a pink buzzbomb.

What’s happening today – including what’s NOT happening today

NOT HAPPENING, #1: Today marks the first day of Seattle Public Library branches’ one-week budget-cut-forced closure – even the SPL website (which now carries the header shown above). They’re scheduled to reopen a week from tomorrow (9/8).

NOT HAPPENING, #2: The 7-day-a-week summer schedule for Colman Pool is now over, so it’s closed today, and will shut down for the season after the upcoming three-day weekend (Saturday-Sunday-Monday). Remember that Southwest Pool is still closed as well, for another two weeks, because of drain-safety work.

SPEAKING OF POOLS: If you have an interest in White Center’s Evergreen Pool, scheduled to close as of tomorrow and to stay closed until and unless a deal can be worked out with a private operator to take it over, you might be interested in a rally planned at the pool tonight, 5-7 pm (more details at partner site White Center Now).

HAPPENING #1: Keeping up the water theme – the second-to-last summer community kayak tour of the Duwamish River leaves South Park at 6 pm tonight. Full details here.

HAPPENING #2: Delridge Produce Cooperative‘s wrapping up the third of four 4-day weeks for its Mobile Market demonstration program – free produce at a roadside stand, to gauge neighborhood interest in access to fresh fruits and vegetables. Today, it’s on the south lawn of Youngstown Arts Center (4408 Delridge), 3:30-7:30 pm.

March for Youth: Dozens join in anti-violence demonstration

It wasn’t in West Seattle, but the invitation to participate was circulated citywide, so we asked WSB contributing photojournalist Matt Durham to cover Sunday’s March for Youth – the second year in a row this event’s been organized to demonstrate concern about Seattle youth violence. He says about 60 people marched. The March for Youth coordinator is Denise Gloster (whose son died young, according to this Seattle Times [WSB partner] report on the event):

Among the signs marchers carried, one remembering Mychael Alexander, killed five years ago at age 20:

One mayoral candidate showed up – Michael McGinn, seen with supporters including West Seattle’s Christi Stapleton (left, in visor):

There’s detailed coverage of the March for Youth, as it happened, at our fellow independent neighborhood-based news site Central District Newssee it here.

Hiawatha Community Center class registration open now

August 30, 2009 11:56 pm
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 |   Announcements

From Lakema Bell at Hiawatha Community Center, word of registration under way now:

Register now for Girls Volleyball at Hiawatha Community Center!

Volleyball is available to athletes ages 10-17 in three different divisions. Players learn basic skills, team work, and sportsmanship skills needed to participate in league play. Practices will begin in September and conclude in mid to late November. For more information please center at (206) 684-7441.

Register for Fall Classes at Hiawatha Community Center!
Zumba Aerobics (New)
Hip Hop Fit (New)
Middle Eastern (Belly Dance)
Tae Kwon Do
Pumpkin Carve
Costume Contest
Flashlight Pumpkin Hunt
World Drumming (New)
High School Musical (New)
Drumming Methods (New)
Junior Brazilian Jam
Instrumental Music Tutoring (New)
Pre-Ballet 1
Tiny Tappers
Messy Manifestations
Creative Movement/Pre-ballet
Kicking Kids
UK Petite Soccer
Kidz Love Soccer Ages 2-12
Family Special Events
Family Play Day 9/25 Free
Halloween Carnival 10/30 Free
Science Night 11/20 $5
Holiday Giving Feast 12/18 $8

To register or for more information, contact the center @ 206-684-7441.

West Seattle weekend scenes: Mural; car wash; film crew

Saturday afternoon, we showed you the young artists preparing the south wall of Super 24 (Delridge/Findlay) for a mural – now, here’s the finished artwork. Here’s what Philippia Goldsmith from DNDA added tonight in a comment on our Saturday afternoon update:

This project is part of a larger initiative to transform the local corner stores into destinations where local residents have an ‘option’ to purchase affordable, delicious, and healthy food for their families. We will be having more projects like this in the coming months. If you’d like to volunteer or contribute to this effort. Send me an e-mail:

Now to Alki:

Abby Suplizio tipped us to the “Save the Tata’s” Breast Cancer 3Day fundraising car wash at Alki Auto Repair this morning/afternoon. The 3Day route skips West Seattle again this year (it went through here in 2007 – WSB pix here) but more than a few West Seattleites are participating; breast-cancer survivor Diana McCasey organized this fundraiser. (If you missed it, you can donate through her page at the 3Day site.) East from Alki, to Schmitz Park:

That’s about the closest Shauna Causey got to the crew filming the online series “Star Trek: Phoenix” again this weekend in Schmitz Park, which had limited public access as a result (Friday night preview here). Shauna reports:

Entering the park from Admiral (Way), there is a sign that says “no admittance” and explains the filming. We came from the Alki Elementary entrance so we did not see this, or any signs that the film crew was still there until we got to the stream and could clearly hear a generator running not too far away in the park. Walking down the trails, we came upon the filming and saw some alien costumes laying on the trail (black helmets covering the head) and looked over to see a man with moss, sticks and brush covering his entire body. The only thing showing was his face, otherwise he looked like a giant pile of moss. I snapped a photo from fairly far away and they wouldn’t let me take any photos closer up.

More about “Star Trek: Phoenix” – which bills itself as “a not-for-profit Internet series and the largest, all volunteer, consistent film production in the Pacific Northwest” – at Posted notices said the crew’s work was to be done by 10 pm tonight, so tomorrow Schmitz should be back to normal.

Head over wheels: Ride and Glide at West Seattle Christian

On a perfect summer night in The Junction, the Ride and Glide bicycle-stunt team did head-over-wheels 360s last night at their West Seattle Christian parking-lot performance, as well as full upright turns – and more. We snapped them in mid-air; from the ground, Mike contributed video he uploaded to YouTube:

That’s the air show – here’s Mike’s video of the ground show:

And we got them to sit still for a moment for this closer look:

They of course spent some time urging young riders not to imitate their stunts – and to always wear helmets, among other healthy choices to be made in life. Ride and Glide is based here in the Puget Sound area; more info online at

Memorial service next Sunday for rose gardener Lori White

A memorial service is planned next Sunday, Sept. 6, at Highline SeaTac Botanical Garden’s Celebration Garden for West Seattle rose gardener Lori White, who died this week at age 49. Rainy Rose Society president Sue Tiffany asked that we share that information along with Ms. White’s obituary; she says, “Lori White belonged to many rose societies including the Valley Rose Society, the Seattle Rose Society, the Heritage Rose Society, the Rainy Rose Society, and many more. Through her volunteer work Lori helped to fund the continuation of the Celebration Garden. Even when she was horribly ill, Lori would still go to the garden and volunteer her time.Her beautiful smile and valiant spirit will be sorely missed by so many, many who loved her. Lori had the ability to make each person that she spoke with feel like he/she was the most important person in the world. I called her ‘Precious’ and indeed she was.’ The photo above shows Ms. White with local gardening expert Ciscoe Morris and broadcaster Meeghan Black. Read on for her obituary:Read More

Wine-tasting fundraiser in West Seattle, to help Bali kids learn

August 30, 2009 5:08 pm
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 |   How to help | West Seattle news | WS beverages

We’ve been reporting on donation drives to help local kids in need get school supplies — through West Seattle Helpline and Pencil Me In For Kids – both of which are still collecting, so please donate if you haven’t already. But if you have already reached out locally – here’s a chance to help kids overseas, too: A wine-tasting event this Thursday at C&P Coffee in West Seattle, hosted by the nonprofit Scholastic Journey to help kids in Bali. SJ’s Krista Livingston shared the photo and this info about the event:

Scholastic Journey, a non-profit organization, will be hosting a wine-tasting fund raiser on Thursday, September 3, 2009 from 6:00 to 9:00 PM. The wine tasting will be held in West Seattle at C&P Coffee Company, located at 5612 California Avenue SW and will feature a selection of five wines from Ward Johnson Winery, an urban family winery located at the foot of Queen Anne Hill in Seattle. Their 06 Merlot won a bronze medal at the 2009 Seattle Wine Awards, and their 06 Cabernet was rated “Outstanding” by Wine Press Northwest. Admission to the event is $15.

Scholastic Journey aims to fill the void in education left by extreme poverty. Scholastic Journey was founded in 2009 to provide an opportunity for children around the world to attend school. Many families are unable to provide their children with the supplies necessary to attend school; items like school uniforms, text books, backpacks, papers, pens and pencils are outside the means of many families in severely impoverished areas. The mission of Scholastic Journey is to enable children to attend school by providing them with these supplies. Provisions will be purchased in the children’s’ own community, in an effort to also help stimulate the local economy.

Scholastic Journey is committed to aid five elementary schools in Bunatan, Bali, Indonesia. Bali has a population of about 3.1 million people (recorded in 2005), 93% of whom adhere to Balinese Hinduism. Bali is renowned for its highly developed arts, including dance, sculpture, painting, leather, metalworking and music. Unfortunately, a series of natural disasters, political coups and terrorist attacks severely affected tourism, bringing much economic hardship to the island. The average annual income in Bunatan and surrounding areas is less than $500, not allowing most families to provide an education for their children.

To find out more about Scholastic Journey, e-mail Krista at – and/or be at the event at C&P Thursday, which includes appetizers and a silent auction.

West Seattle scene: Fog on the water

If you missed the fog that blanketed the water this morning – here’s one view from West Seattle, courtesy of Mike Fiechtner. The forecast says you may see fog tomorrow morning, too. (Side note: The Seattle-Bainbridge state ferry Wenatchee made a hard landing downtown in the fog – though WSF isn’t saying yet whether conditions were to blame – and that run was down to 1 boat for hours; a replacement’s being moved over later today but that leaves Seattle-Bremerton with 1 boat for the rest of the night, which could mean more traffic on Fauntleroy-Southworth.)

Followup: Police say West Seattle case was ‘acquaintance rape’

Followup to last night’s story on North Delridge neighbors mobilizing after reports of a woman being raped early Saturday in the Greg Davis Park area: We just talked with Lt. Von Levandowski of the Southwest Precinct. He says this is being investigated as a case of “acquaintance rape, which is still bad … but we don’t believe there is a predator out there.” He says the woman had gone to the area with the person who allegedly raped her; after she went to the nearby gas station/convenience store for help, she was taken to the hospital for the care and examination that is routine in reported rape cases. Lt. Levandowski says officers “processed the scene” and obtained evidence, and while no one has been arrested yet, he says they have “a lead on a suspect.”

High Point Neighborhood Center grand opening date: Nov. 14

(Photos by Christopher Boffoli)
We checked this week on the progress of the new High Point Neighborhood Center, the community facility that Neighborhood House is building at 34th/Morgan (our previous reports include the groundbreaking a year ago, the Nucor-side sign about its big solar array, and a construction tour in May). NH’s Ray Li tells WSB it’s “about 85% of the way there” and that the grand opening is currently scheduled for Saturday, November 14th – invitations are in the works now. Here’s a closer look at part of the roof, with the solar panels:

In addition to the solar component, the $13 million project has a multitude of other “green-built” components (detailed during the May construction tour), with a LEED Gold certification hoped for. In addition to community-gathering space, it also will be headquarters for social-service workers and Head Start education; here’s more info from the Neighborhood House website.

Happening today: Benefit haircuts, Farmers’ Market, more …

BENEFIT HAIRCUTS: Starting at 9 am, proceeds from haircuts done today at Christopher’s Salon in Morgan Junction (7009 California SW) will go toward helping the owner with medical bills from a recent health crisis. Tickets also are being sold for a benefit raffle; the drawing is now set for September 7. (10:45 am note: We have gone to the salon twice since 9 am and no one is there – it’s closed – not sure what’s going on, but if you are interested in helping, call before you go to see if they’re open – 932-1760.)

“REINVENT YOURSELF” WORKSHOP: Seven local entrepreneurs are presenting this event (a WSB sponsor) starting at 8:45 today at Merrill Gardens (also a WSB sponsor; 4611 35th SW). If you didn’t register in advance, you can do so at the door – full details here.

WEST SEATTLE FARMERS’ MARKET: 10 am-2 pm as always – here’s what’s on the Ripe and Ready list this week.

LAST DAY BEFORE LIBRARY SHUTDOWN: After today, Seattle Public Library branches are closed for a week because of city budget cuts, followed by the Labor Day holiday, so if you need to get something done, today’s your last chance till Tuesday, Sept. 8th. West Seattle has four library branches (Southwest, Delridge, High Point, West Seattle/Admiral); locations and hours can be found here.

“MARCH FOR YOUTH”: This isn’t happening in West Seattle but the invitation extends citywide – a march and rally by and for those concerned about youth violence. The march starts at 2 sites at 3 pm; full details here from the Rainier Valley Post.

Rescued kayaker shares the story of buying a “home with history”

Last March, we covered the rescue of a kayaker who got into trouble off southern West Seattle shores. A few weeks later, that kayaker – Dr. Scott Redfern – sent us his own account of what happened; we published it here. Now he’s sent another story, about his home-buying adventure in West Seattle this summer:

Story and photos by Dr. Scott Redfern

On April 10th, I posted the story of my kayak trip gone wrong and my rescue by the Vashon ferry.

On July 8th, I bought a home in West Seattle. The history of the home and the house next door deserve to be shared. The property came with two homes on one lot. What sets these homes apart from all others in the neighborhood is the fact that these two structures have been an enormous eyesore for decades.

The property is located at 4514 SW Willow St. (map) The stories of the house are numerous.

Read More

West Seattle Crime Watch: Neighbors mobilize after reported rape

August 29, 2009 11:13 pm
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 |   Crime | Delridge | West Seattle news

We have received several notes about reports circulating in North Delridge that a woman was raped this morning in or near Greg Davis Park (26th/Brandon). We have not been able to get official police information on this yet – that is often challenging on weekends, unless we find out about an incident while it’s happening, and can go to the scene to talk directly with police. But the most recent note we received has specific information about neighbors mobilizing — so we want to make that public, while we continue to work on getting official information (hopefully tomorrow.) The first report we received today came from a woman who says she talked to officers who were investigating the incident this morning, saying they told her it was not a random attack. Another note says the victim got to a nearby gas station where help was called; the 911 log does show an aid call to the gas station/convenience store at 5235 Delridge at 7:25 am. Meantime, the most recent note we received, from a neighborhood activist who asked that we not use her name, says:

Already, plans for increasing safety in Delridge, and specifically, Cottage Grove, are brewing … a neighbor is organizing a self defense series for the women (and anyone else who wants to join) of the neighborhood and the Neighborhood Watch is on high alert and we are calling to report ANY and ALL suspicious behavior in Delridge! Group walks are being organized and the Neighborhood Council Meeting is this week and we will certainly discuss this incident and how to keep our neighbors safe.

The police told me by phone today that neighbors should ALWAYS REPORT ANY SUSPICIOUS BEHAVIOR THAT WE SEE–let the police decide if it is worthy of police action. The more information we provide, the better they can do their job. If in doubt, call 911.

There will be many in attendance at the upcoming North Delridge Neighborhood Council Meeting this Wednesday, Sept. 2nd 630-8pm at Olympia Pizza 5605 Delridge Way SW. All Delridge neighbors are welcome! We will discuss safety and other topics.

Several of the notes we’ve received say the victim reportedly was able to give police a license number. Again, we hope to be able to get official information tomorrow.

West Seattle scenes: Terry Brooks; Holy Family fair; The Mount

August 29, 2009 6:21 pm
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 |   West Seattle news | Westwood | White Center | WS culture/arts

It’s one of the few things we have now covered four consecutive years since starting WSB in late 2005 – West Seattle-headquartered mega-best-selling fantasy-fiction author Terry Brooks made his annual late-summer appearance today at Westwood Village’s Barnes and Noble. His newest book, released this month, is “A Princess of Landover“; Erin from B&N shares this extra info:

Terry Brooks hosted a bookfair in conjunction with his reading, for the Interagency Academy for Seattle Public Schools. A portion of sales will go to this agency if community members shop at the West Seattle Barnes & Noble and either bring in a voucher if they received one or mention the Brooks bookfair to the cashier. It’s not too late to contribute!

B&N is open till 9 tonight. Less than a mile south of there, Holy Family School is hosting its first-ever “El Carnaval” street fair all weekend – we stopped by about an hour ago:

Bouncy toys for the little ones, too:

Last night’s grand finale to the monthlong Summer Concerts at The Mount (WSB sponsor) series at Providence Mount St. Vincent featured a bouncer too – with a tropical motif:

Cheryl Serio sang a jazzy set:

Next big event at The Mount: Brian Duffy leads a workshop in retirement planning, 2:30 pm Sept. 22nd.