day : 11/11/2009 14 results

Video: Constantine’s thanks, McDermott’s hopes @ 34th DDs

November 11, 2009 11:37 pm
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle politics | West Seattle video

8 months ago, just weeks into his campaign for King County Executive, Dow Constantine won an early endorsement and donation from this area’s biggest political group, the 34th District Democrats. Tonight, as you can watch in our video above, he gave a triumphant, thankful six-minute speech to the group for its role in helping him win a “long, tough campaign” that at the start, he admitted, seemed like “a long shot.” He also laid out a few priorities in moving toward what he promised would be “fundamental reform,” and invited everyone to a swearing-in ceremony that’ll break with tradition – around 4 pm on Nov. 24th, after the certification of the election (which as of tonight has him up 59%-41%), not in County Council chambers, but likely at the historic First United Methodist Church that he helped save downtown.

Meantime, as you can hear him say at the end of the speech, his election sets off something of a chain reaction, provided subsequent events go the way the 34th DDs hope they will. They passed a resolution tonight urging the County Council to appoint State Sen. Joe McDermott to the District 8 Council seat Constantine is leaving. McDermott made an appeal to the group at the start of what was on the agenda as a legislative preview from him, and State Reps. Eileen Cody and Sharon Nelson (who in turn was mentioned as a likely State Senate successor if McDermott moves to the County Council):

This is no slam dunk for a variety of reasons: The County Council is looking at a process that would mirror what they did with the interim County Executive appointment of Kurt Triplett – seek to fill the job for the remaining year of its current term with someone who wouldn’t be interested in running for the full term next year. (They’re scheduled to take up legislation regarding the process next Monday.) Bad move, in the view of 34th DDs chair Tim Nuse: “The caretaker role doesn’t work,” he declared toward the start of tonight’s meeting. “Our interests won’t be represented as strong as possible in the council. … A year from now, regardless of the decision the council makes, Joe will be our county councilmember – he’s gonna run and gonna win – so it’s a very clear message to (the County Council) ‘let’s do it right the first time’.” That message may be coming from hundreds of voices – the resolution passed tonight called for every supporter to call every councilmember about the appointment.

Veterans Day 2009: Two more West Seattle scenes

First: Our video shows part of a solemn tribute at the start of tonight’s 34th District Democrats meeting (as-it-happened coverage here). After the Pledge of Allegiance, veterans Dorsol Plants and Skip Dreps rang a bell 12 times, both in honor of Veterans Day, and in memory of the people killed in the Fort Hood massacre last week. Next: While at the meeting, we received e-mail from DFC, forwarding a link to a Flickr gallery on behalf of management at the Tug Inn (just west of Delridge/Orchard). Flags and balloons waved in the afternoon sunshine; rather than just picking out one photo, here’s a slideshow of their gallery:

And if you missed it in comments on an earlier WSB Veterans Day story today – this link was shared, showing a West Seattle Cub Scout helping place flags on veterans’ graves at Evergreen Washelli in the north end.

Junction Neighborhood Organization: Details matter

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Also from last night’s Junction Neighborhood Organization meeting: There’s more to the future of The Junction than the big issues of big development projects – it’s also about the details: How will landscaping, sidewalks, streets be improved? That was the crux of the discussion with Junction-based architect Brandon Nicholson, who’s been involved for about two years with discussions about what the area can, and should, look like. Rather than presenting a specific plan, he said the key thing is to get neighbors and neighborhoods talking about what they would like to see. He and JuNO members agreed that they’re hoping for consistency in how landscaping and other features look along rights of way. That includes wider sidewalks, as density increases in The Junction. And the discussion included The Triangle, which as discussed here – and reported citywide – with Nicholson noting that differences include the fact that The Junction has significant retail development, while The Triangle does not but will inevitably head that way. Asked about the once-proposed tree-lined boulevard concept (reported here 13 months ago), he said it’s still under discussion, but repeated that there’s no particular plan being forwarded now – just an intent to spark discussion. JuNO president Erica Karlovits observed that consistency can only come with advocacy – as new developments are proposed, neighbors need to be prepared to advocate for right-of-way features staying consistent, block to block.

Updates as it happened: 34th District Democrats’ meeting

(34th District Democrats’ champagne toast tonight to last week’s election wins)
7:10 PM: We’re at The Hall at Fauntleroy for the first 34th District Democrats meeting since the election, and planning a few as-it-happens updates: First, even before we entered the hall, flyers expressing concern about the new Seattle Public Schools assignment plan were being handed out by a volunteer on the sidewalk. Second, on the tables is text of a proposed resolution supporting the appointment of State Sen. Joe McDermott as Dow Constantine‘s successor on the King County Council. Third, the meeting started with a tribute to veterans, twinned with a memorial bell rung 12 times for the victims of the Fort Hood massacre last week. More as it happens. 7:28 PM UPDATE: The group just heard from County Executive-elect Constantine, who got 34th DDs support early on and expressed major thanks for that. He says he’s planning to move the swearing-in ceremony outside County Council chambers so more people can attend – around 4 pm on 11/24 at the First United Methodist Church downtown, which he had fought to change from demolition. 8:17 PM UPDATE: Before the three 34th District state legislators present a preview of what’s ahead in the new session, Sen. McDermott told the group he’s hoping to win the County Council job. 8:50 PM UPDATE: The 34th DDs have just approved a resolution urging that McDermott be appointed, and promising that members will start calling County Councilmembers to voice their support. The resolution makes a point of saying that the 34th District has a majority of the 8th Council District’s population (a reference to what’s been mentioned several times here tonight, that 11th District State Rep. Zack Hudgins is another potential candidate for County Council; even if he is appointed, 34th DDs chair Tim Nuse declared, Hudgins would find himself running against Sen. McDermott, and losing, in a year). 9 PM UPDATE: As the meeting draws toward a close, City Councilmember Tom Rasmussen was introduced, and from the sidelines, he said, “I look forward to working with County Councilmember McDermott.” (A few minutes later, the meeting ended; look for breakout stories to come.)

Seattle City Light rate increase? Meeting tomorrow; e-mail tonight

At last night’s Junction Neighborhood Organization meeting, president Erica Karlovits told WSB she’d heard from the office of City Councilmember Bruce Harrell who leads the Energy and Technology Committee — saying the proposed Seattle City Light rate hike will be discussed at the Budget Committee meeting tomorrow morning. She says that if you’ve got anything to say about a possible rate hike, you’re urged to get your comments to Harrell ASAP: That’s echoed by Patti Mullen of the West Seattle Chamber of Commerce, who passed along this link to Harrell’s website, where he spells out the possibilities – anywhere from 7 percent to almost 14 percent, under a variety of scenarios. (He discussed rate-hike scenarios at a WS Chamber brownbag in July, where we took the photo at left.) Mullen points out that it’s important for businesses to pay attention to this as well as residential ratepayers: “Local businesses are barely able to claim ‘recovery’ mode at present, and this level of increase could be devastating to West Seattle ’s small business community.” She attended a City Hall discussion yesterday and heard a variety of viewpoints, including businesses saying they’d like to see City Light’s strategic plan first, and workers saying the utility needs money to pay for infrastructure upgrades.

Labor of love under way inside WestSide Baby headquarters

A little remodeling is under way at the White Center headquarters of WestSide Baby, which serves families in need all over West Seattle as well as WC and the surrounding area: WestSide Baby’s Nancy Woodland says Ventana Construction (WSB sponsor) is donating a work-week of labor, and got $500 in donated materials from Dunn Lumber, to help make their quarters safer and more organized. Nancy shared some photos – the one above is the donation-dropoff area, “before” – here’s a holding zone, “after”:

She explains, “This improvement will keep our volunteers safe from any falling towers of clothing waiting to be sorted. Rocco from Ventana Construction has been quick and professional. Getting done quickly is key so we can avoid interruptions in serving children.” WestSide Baby, by the way, is on Twitter (just started today at @westsidebaby33) and Facebook, where within the past hour, they posted “Our shelves for clothing sizes 4 – 12 are depleted. If you have items to donate, please drop them off at our facility or our dropoff locations as soon as you can. We have children requesting items, like winter coats, that we cannot fill.” (Dropoff spots include Fauntleroy Church, 9140 California SW, and West Seattle Kids’ Salon, 6965 California SW.)

New restaurant moving into former Ama Ama space

(Photo by Christopher Boffoli)
Finally some info this morning about what’s going into the space in The Junction left vacant since Ama Ama Oyster Bar and Grill closed in July – several people e-mailed after noticing the “For Sale” sign had come down, but we found no permit applications or other hints about what was to come. Then last night Paul e-mailed to report signs of activity inside – gone by the time we got there, but this morning WSB contributing journalist Christopher Boffoli has confirmed that a new restaurant will be opening there. He reports: “No name yet, but the menu will be a Continental/Mediterranean mix. They expect to open after the holidays.” Working on more details – but for those who’ve wondered, now you know! (And thanks for all the notes. Your collaboration is truly what powers WSB. Contact us 24/7.)

Veterans Day 2009: Neighbors’ flag gift for VFW Post 2713

Until a short time ago, that tattered flag was flying over VFW Post 2713 in The Triangle. Sharonn Meeks of the Fairmount Community Association – the nearest neighborhood group, covering the area just south of The Triangle – organized an effort to present the post with a replacement for Veterans Day, and less than an hour ago, she and West Seattle veteran Ron Zuber went up on the roof to take down the old one and raise the new one:

(If you’ve never been there, the VFW Post is at 36th/Alaska.)

H1N1 vaccinations for babies/small children: Sand Point line

If you consulted the county’s list of pharmacies offering vaccine and were thinking of going to Katterman’s Sand Point Pharmacy in the north end today because they’re offering a “walk-in” clinic for 6 months and up – West Seattle architect Brandon Nicholson sends photos and a warning that the line is already blocks long. 10:27 AM UPDATE: Update from Brandon – they’re out for the day but (as per the county page) planning to do this again tomorrow. Brandon is dad to a 12-month-old and say his West Seattle pediatrician isn’t expecting vaccine till next month, which is why they went to check out the only King County pharmacy offering it now to babies and toddlers.

1:17 PM UPDATE: More info from Brandon for any local families thinking about doing this tomorrow. After five hours, he got an appointment to bring his son back later this afternoon. Katterman’s is not taking appointments for the rest of today but will start the cycle again tomorrow morning. He got there at 7 am today and the line was already longer than a block, but he says you do NOT need to bring your child to stand out in the cold with you to get the appointment – when you get to the head of the line, they’ll give you a one-hour window to come back later and get the vaccine. $20/vaccine and he says cash will move things faster – you can be processed outside rather than going inside to deal with insurance or credit card. Location and contact info for the pharmacy is here (they’re even on Twitter and mentioned they have 700 doses for tomorrow).

Also tonight: 34th District Democrats

November 11, 2009 9:55 am
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle politics

Our area’s biggest political group – the 34th District Democrats – meets tonight for the first time since the election. Lots to talk about there; they’re also scheduled to look ahead to the legislative session. Here’s the agenda; the meeting’s at 7 pm, The Hall at Fauntleroy.

Veterans Day 2009

It’s a day to remember and honor those who served. But as with any holiday, there are practicalities to discuss too, as follows:


TRANSIT: Reduced weekday service for Metro (detailed here), Sound Transit info here, Fauntleroy-Vashon-Southworth ferries on construction schedule


GOVERNMENT OFFICES: Official city holiday, state and county too

CITY-RUN COMMUNITY CENTERS: Closed (including just-reopened Southwest Pool)



PARKING: Free in the Seattle spots where you’d usually pay meters/pay stations

BANKS: Most closed

MAIL: Regular delivery, no; Express Mail, yes.

We don’t have a comprehensive list of freebies/deals being offered to local veterans today but we did get the Brown Bear Car Wash announcement – if you’re a veteran, or active duty/military spouse, check it out.

State championship for West Seattle runner Maddie Meyers

November 11, 2009 4:35 am
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle people | WS & Sports

(Photo courtesy Kathy Meyers)
Another achievement for a talented West Seattle athlete: Last summer, we shared the news of Maddie Meyershigh placement in the Seafair Torchlight Run. Maddie, a sophomore at Northwest School, repeated with the 1A state title at the state Cross Country Championship last weekend, setting a new 1A course record – 18:01 – which was the second-fastest of the day, 3 seconds behind a 4A runner. Next up, she’s racing in Border Clash. (Just a reminder, we love to share news of achievements – young or old, sports or academics or contests or whatever, e-mail!)

Admiral Neighborhood Association: Election night, kiosks, more

By Keri DeTore
Reporting for West Seattle Blog

One week after statewide Election Night, the November meeting of the Admiral Neighborhood Association provided a bit of drama with the first-ever multiple-candidate vote for president.

The new slate of officers – whose predecessors couldn’t run again because of term limits – are president Katy Walum, vice president Jim Cavin, secretary Catherine Barker and treasurer Ann Limbaugh. (From left in our photo are Barker, Walum and Cavin.)

Walum, who organized the first-ever Summer Concerts at Hiawatha series earlier this year, ran for president against ANA vice president Jim Del Ciello. When votes were counted, there was a tie, but the group’s bylaws didn’t stipulate how to handle that situation.

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West Seattle Crime Watch: Late-night search for an intruder

This happened near WSB contributing journalist Christopher Boffoli‘s neighborhood on the east side of The Junction late Tuesday night, so he checked out the sizable police response after a resident in the 4500 block of 41st SW (map) reported an intruder at a neighbor’s home – a man who first pounded on the door, then kicked it in when no one answered, and shouted while going through the house. He fled before police arrived; they searched with a K-9 unit but didn’t find him, and weren’t certain whether anything had been stolen.