West Seattle, Washington
The “disaster” in Disaster Preparedness Month doesn’t have to be something huge, regional, cataclysmic. Much of the preparedness information we’re presenting all month also can apply to something on a personal/household level – again, something we all hope never will happen, but to quote the old saying, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Tonight, the ounce of prevention is another webpage: Fact sheets and hotlines, compiled by the state – including an A to Z list, actually A to W, from accessible information (including Braille and ASL) to winter-storm preparedness. This one, you can bookmark and go back to later, printing out any and all fact sheets you’d want to have available – and/or consider bookmarking it on your smartphone for mobile accessibility. Certainly, your default plan CAN be “Call 911” – and it’s merited in many of the circumstances – but knowing initial steps to take while authorities rush in, or what to do if it’s a large-scale disaster and they’re overtaxed, could be the difference between life and death. Now, our nightly reminders:
–West Seattle Be Prepared (resource-laden, WS-specific website here; Facebook group for more discussion here)
-city’s 3 To Get Ready challenge (register for prizes!), which is being advertised on WSB this month
-your Emergency Communications Hub – know it, know multiple routes to it.
HEARTLAND CAFE STARTS DAILY BREAKFAST TOMORROW: Nancy from the new Heartland Café sends word that they start daily breakfast tomorrow, opening at 8 am Tuesdays-Sundays (closed Mondays) Heartland owner Jay says their hours are now: 8 am-10 pm Tuesdays-Thursdays, 8 am-3:30 am Fridays and Saturdays, 8 am-3 pm and 5 pm-9 pm (supper) Sundays. The Benbow Room bar is open 11 am-2 am Tuesdays-Fridays, 8 am-2 am Saturdays-Sundays.
TWO TONS OF DONATED FOOD: You can’t quite read it in the photo at that size, but the folks at Curves West Seattle collected 1,939 pounds of food – almost a ton – in their recent food drive. However – their friendly rivals at Curves Westwood collected 2,087 and “won” the annual competition. Nonetheless, they point out in the announcement that accompanied the photo – the local food banks are the real winners.
SPECIAL MOTHER’S DAY CARD: West Seattle letterpress enterprise Myrtle Alley Press just announced it’s part of a fundraiser that you might consider as a Mother’s Day gift idea: If you donate to Jubilee Women’s Center “in honor of your mother or a special woman in your life,” the announcement says, “Jubilee will send a beautiful letterpress card – that truly captures a mother’s spirit of giving – to the honored recipient.” Myrtle Alley Press – which uses antique, hand-cranked printing presses – donated the printing of the card, shown above. Inside, it reads: “Thank you for all the small things you have done and continue to do, day after day. Happy Mother’s Day.” Jubilee provides transitional housing for homeless women; you can make a donation and arrange for a card by following this link. (Mother’s Day is May 9th – the day after West Seattle Community Garage Sale Day!)
Another sign of spring this past weekend at playfields all around West Seattle — the season kickoff for West Seattle Soccer Club teams. In the photo, it’s Italy vs. Brazil – WSSC board member Tim McMonigle explained that the organization “outfitted all the teams in country jerseys to commemorate the upcoming World Cup in South Africa this June.” He also says it’s “another record-breaking year, with almost 1,000 kids participating.” Almost 200 adult volunteers, too. You can find schedules here.
There’s a new feature in the next edition of the free workshop that Ventana Construction (WSB sponsor) is presenting this Wednesday night – important information about new EPA lead-paint rules starting this month for homes built before 1978. And you might also be interested in learning how to cash in on the energy-tax credits that are ending this year. The “Building a Better Home” workshop offers information for custom-home building as well as remodeling. It’s free, led by Ventana’s owners along with architect Kim Goforth, starting at 6 pm Wednesday and running about an hour and a half. They request that you RSVP ASAP since space is limited – call 206-932-3009.
Just got word from Seattle City Councilmember Bruce Harrell‘s office that they’re inviting people to join on a special walking tour tomorrow night in West Seattle – covering two blocks that have the new LED street lights intended for installation citywide. The tour actually starts outside West Seattle, at Lighting Design Lab tomorrow at 7 pm, where the new lights will be demonstrated and discussed; then vans will shuttle participants to the West Seattle tour site – the lab’s at 2915 4th Avenue South (map). The tour blocks are 53rd and 54th SW, between Charlestown and Dakota (map). The city will replace all 40,000 street lights with LEDs over the next five years, and expects to save more than $2 million energy costs a year when they’re all in place. If you’re interested in joining the tour, here’s the official advisory.
Seattle City Council members have just unanimously (8-0, Sally Clark absent) approved the resolution that lays out a path toward a potential annexation vote for White Center and vicinity in November 2011, though the city wouldn’t have to commit to a vote till early next year. Details at partner site White Center Now.
From left, Susan Melrose from the West Seattle Junction Association (WSB sponsor) and Cari Day Day wielded the shovels this morning at the ceremonial groundbreaking for Junction Plaza Park (northwest corner of 42nd/Alaska). The park will have both grass and paved areas, as well as numerous native plantings, and work should be done by June. Here’s a rendering from last fall, showing landscape architect Karen Kiest‘s design:
As soon as the park’s done, there will be a special community event to help with plantings, and everyone’s encouraged to join in – to get on the notification list for that, e-mail Melrose at firstname.lastname@example.org. ADDED 1:12 PM: Early this morning, a few hours before the groundbreaking, the park contractor was out taking soil samples; Christopher Boffoli spotted the work and got this photograph:
After the ceremony, Seattle Parks project manager Gary Gibbons explained in a short interview what the sampling is for, and what happens next:
As we’ve been reporting over the past year-plus (here’s our coverage archive), while Junction Plaza Park has been in the works for more than a few years – the site was purchased in 2005 – one last major community-contribution push involving WSJA and the Junction Neighborhood Organization helped make the long-held dream a reality.
(October 2009 photo courtesy Guy Smith)
Last fall, we brought you the story of the Joy D. Smith Wildlife Raft – tethered to a round white buoy with blue stripe, northeast of Alki Point. This morning, the raft’s co-builder Guy Smith e-mailed to ask that people be on the lookout for the raft — it’s gone, apparently having broken away from the buoy (which is still in place) sometime overnight. If you’ve seen it – or something you think MIGHT be it – please call Guy at 206-937-8742.
We have just left Juvenile Court southeast of downtown. The Alki woman beaten unconscious while on the job as a Metro bus driver in Tukwila earlier this year has just addressed her 14-year-old attacker in court – but his sentencing has been postponed at the request of his lawyer, who told Judge Chris Washington that he thought the hearing was tomorrow, and therefore didn’t notify his client’s mother. Judge Washington agreed to let the defense present its side tomorrow but offered to hear from anyone who wanted to speak today – so the prosecution made its case, and that included the statement that the 57-year-old driver had told us via e-mail that she would give. As she had hoped, some fellow drivers, and transit union leaders, were there to support her, filling what few seats there were in the small courtroom. Visibly shaken just at the sight of her attacker, the driver nonetheless mustered courage and poise to give her statement clearly and firmly; during it, she asked her attacker to look at her (he did) from his seat, perhaps 10 feet away, and told him, among other things, “Hate never wins.” She also said she prays for him “to become a better man” and “to heal,” as she hopes he will. The court was told that he has substance-abuse and anger problems, and that he is a known gang member, who while he has no conviction record, has had at least 15 documented contacts with law enforcement. The sentencing hearing will resume at 8:30 tomorrow morning. We will add more from today’s proceedings a bit later. ADDED 4:05 PM: Our transcription of the victim’s statement in the courtroom today – read on:Read More
ORIGINAL 7:40 AM REPORT: A police investigation is under way in The Junction right now, and the north sidewalk on SW Alaska is cordoned off in the block between California SW and 44th. Det. Mark Jamieson in the SPD media unit confirms that they’re investigating a “deceased male” but says “it’s way too soon to tell if (he died) from natural or other causes.” He says the call came in from the Fire Department at 5:50 am; the 911 log shows an aid call to that area at 5:42 am. At the scene, what appears to be a covered body is visible just west of the bus waiting area between Easy Street and Twilight (behind the police car in our photo – we don’t show bodies, covered or not). Officers at the scene would say only that they were awaiting the Medical Examiner‘s arrival. The investigation has put a bus waiting area off limits, so riders are being directed to the next northbound stop along 44th. We’ll be checking with authorities later to find out whether this turns out to have been natural causes, or not. Thanks to those who e-mailed/called/texted about this; the first note was from Jonathon, who wrote, “When I arrived at my bus stop in the Junction around 5:45 this morning, a fire truck was just pulling up. A gentleman on a bicycle had called 911 out of concern for someone laying face-down in the alcove of the art collective. The cyclist had shaken the man but was unable to elicit a response. The firefighters also shook him and checked for a pulse; I couldn’t tell from where I was standing what they concluded, but the man certainly wasn’t moving.”
8:11 AM UPDATE: The body’s been removed and so has the police tape, so the bus area is open again. 8:42 AM NOTE: We checked back with Det. Jamieson, who notes that homicide detectives were not called out, so while an official cause of death isn’t in yet, that indicates no obvious sign of foul play. We will continue checking.
(Kiteboarder photographed off Alki on Saturday by David Hutchinson)
JUNCTION PLAZA PARK GROUNDBREAKING CELEBRATION: 10 am today, northwest corner of 42nd/Alaska. Junction Plaza Park has been many years in the making, and after a final year-plus community fundraising push involving leaders from the West Seattle Junction Association (WSB sponsor) and Junction Neighborhood Organization, construction is about to begin. Before crews take over the site for the next month and a half or so, there’ll be a ceremony at 10 this morning, and if you can break away, you’ll be warmly welcomed.
PIGEON POINT NEIGHBORHOOD COUNCIL: Since the last meeting, this northeastern West Seattle neighborhood has gone through six weeks of road closures/detours, and events ahead include the Pigeon Point Park leg of Duwamish Alive! this Saturday in honor of Earth Day. So what else is up in Pigeon Point? Come to the cafeteria at Pathfinder K-8 tonight, 7 pm, and find out.
NEIGHBORHOOD PREPAREDNESS CLASS: We’ve been talking about Disaster Preparedness every night this month and tonight, Fauntleroy neighbors get some hands-on training in a special class at 7 pm, Fauntleroy Church.
HOLOCAUST REMEMBRANCE DAY AT SCCC: 9 am-noon today at Brockey Center on the South Seattle Community College (WSB sponsor) campus, Holocaust Remembrance Day will be observed with talks by survivors of genocide in Europe, Cambodia, and Rwanda. Everyone is welcome.
That’s just part of what’s on today’s schedule – see more by checking the WSB Events calendar.
(WSB photos by Cliff DesPeaux)
That’s Jade West Café fan and West Seattle resident Dave Gross hugging cafe proprietor Wah Wong during Sunday’s fundraising lunch at Wallingford restaurant Perché No Pasta and Vino. Though Wah is using a wheelchair now, the family still hopes they can reopen the treasured West Seattle eatery “soon.” That’s what they told photojournalist Cliff DesPeaux, who covered the event for WSB. A larger-than-expected crowd showed up to offer their support, and to see Wah and son Jason Wong, both badly hurt when a drunk driver hit them in December outside their Beacon Hill home. Jason lost part of a leg:
Monica Tonel, greeting Jason in that photo, is the mother of a basketball player coached by Jason, whose friends organized the fundraiser. More photos ahead:Read More