day : 08/09/2010 14 results

West Seattle Weather Watch: Stunning sunset

September 8, 2010 11:29 pm
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle weather

The day that began cloudy, rainy, and murky, ended spectacularly. Thanks to Mike B for the sunset photo. Tomorrow, the forecast promises, er, suggests, we’ll see sun again in the afternoon!

Update: 34th District Democrats endorse Joe Fitzgibbon

ORIGINAL 7:53 PM REPORT: We’re at the 34th District Democrats‘ meeting in Fauntleroy, where it is standing-room only as the group gets ready to hear 34th District State House Position 2 candidates Joe Fitzgibbon and Mike Heavey make their respective cases for the group’s endorsement, with the general election just eight weeks away. They were the top two vote-getters, in that order, in a primary race that also included Marcee Stone – whom the 34th DDs had endorsed – and independent “Mac” McElroy.

8:08 PM UPDATE: The 34th District Democrats’ membership first voted to endorse these positions: No on I-1053, No on I-1100, No on I-1105, No on I-1107, Yes for the Seattle Schools Levy, in a “block” vote. That is a followup to endorsements that carry over from earlier in the year. And after hearing from King County Executive Dow Constantine, they also voted to endorse Yes on King County Proposition 1 – the sales-tax increase (two cents on $10) to raise $60 million to stave off some county budget cuts (including services, he pointed out, that are available to everyone in King County, not just the unincorporated areas). “We have to protect these services if we are to have a decent community in which to live,” he implored.

8:11 PM UPDATE: They are now considering the Fitzgibbon-Heavey race. Both are here, though neither spoke to the group before the vote.

8:38 PM UPDATE: That endorsement goes to Fitzgibbon, 96 to 31. He is thanking the group for its support (iPhone photo added above – Fitzgibbon standing, 34th DDs chair Tim Nuse seated). We interviewed each candidate on video after the vote (clips added 10:59 pm):

9:14 PM UPDATE: The meeting is adjourned, after two more endorsement votes – in two municipal court races, after the first ballot didn’t result in either candidate getting a 60 percent majority per group rules, the second ballot resulted in dual endorsements, both in Edsonya Charles vs. Ed McKenna and in Karen Donohue vs. Mike Hurtado. The group also passed a resolution supporting Streets for All, on the urging of past and current City Council candidate Dorsol Plants of Highland Park – that calls for the city to allot $30 million a year to improvements such as sidewalks.

POSTSCRIPT: Other notes – 34th DDs chair Tim Nuse condemned the anti-Muslim climate that has led to Koran-burning events and the New York City mosque controversy, saying “This has got to stop” … Knowing that its legislative seats are all going to Democrats, 34th leaders urged support for D’s elsewhere in the region who are in tight races, most notably incumbent State Sen. Claudia Kauffman … The 34th State House #2 race is one of two for “open” seats on the West Seattle ballot; the other is King County Council District 8, where Councilmember Jan Drago was appointed to hold the seat this year but is not running for election – top primary votegetter State Sen. Joe McDermott, already endorsed by the group, was at tonight’s meeting, as was a representative of his opponent Diana Toledo‘s campaign; Jerry Toledo told us she wanted to be at the 34th DDs’ meeting but had been asked to be at the Discovery Park news conference about last week’s fatal shooting of a Native American carver … In addition to McDermott/County Council, the list of previously endorsed candidates/measures was presented as this: Sen. Patty Murray, U.S. Rep. Jim McDermott, U.S. Rep. Adam Smith, State Rep. Sharon Nelson for State Senate, State Rep. Eileen Cody, Yes on 1098, Yes on 52, No on 1082, Charlie Wiggins for State Supreme Court, Steve Rosen for Municipal Court, William Gregory for Municipal Court, Michael Spearman for Court of Appeals.

SIDE NOTE: Just noticed this analysis of the Fitzgibbon-Heavey primary voting – with a map – done by a political consulting firm (linked by PubliCola) – in West Seattle, there was a clear east-west divide.

Update: Police seek suspect in stabbing on Delridge

ORIGINAL 7:22 PM REPORT: On our way to the assault with weapons call in the 8400 block of Delridge.

7:28 PM: Christopher Boffoli is there (and sent the photo added above) and confirms that Delridge is closed at Thistle. He says this is apparently a stabbing – and there is a report there may be a suspect in custody at 16th and Henderson, less than a mile away.

7:34 PM: Delridge reopening.

7:51 PM UPDATE: From police, according to WSB’s Patrick Sand at the scene – all parties known to one another and allegedly it started over an argument about money. Suspect fled and still at large; victim received cut to arm and refused treatment.

Your photos: 1st day of school in West Seattle

On the WSB Facebook page, we invited proud parents to share first-day-of-school photos, and here are the results – above, Nicole R‘s son Kieran, in his first day of first grade at Highland Park Elementary. Next, Mary Kate‘s first day of preschool, shared by mom Katie:

What a day at Lafayette Elementary! Check out the hallway shot – right after the bell rang – shared by Luckie:

Also at Lafayette, here are 1st graders Molly and Owen, as photographed by Molly’s mom Carrie Ann:

Not far away, Stacey Riley‘s son Kellan started 6th grade at Madison Middle School:

At Roxhill Elementary, it was the first day of fifth grade for Kelli, photographed by mom Lisa:

And Theo started kindergarten at Schmitz Park today, according to proud mom Jennifer:

The Internet’s got infinite room, so if you have a photo to share, send it along!

8:33 PM: Karlynn shares this photo of daughter Kahina, who started this week at Hope Lutheran:

11:09 PM: And Lashanna sends this photo of a trio from Pathfinder K-8 – Coco, Jayden, and Dante (she’s mom of the “bookends” in the photo):

Thanks for sharing photos – be sure to let us know when there’s news at your school too (sometimes we hear from the official sources, sometimes we don’t, so we really appreciate the heads-up, so we can share news of all kinds that helps everyone else in West Seattle know what’s up at local schools).

City budget hearings announced, including one in West Seattle

City leaders have given indications at every turn that more painful budget cuts are unavoidable next year – so this fall’s public hearings may be the most important ones ever. The schedule just arrived via e-mail, and one is in West Seattle – here’s the full list:

Balancing our city’s budget in tough times requires a great deal of direction, constructive input from citizens, and the careful ordering of priorities. Don’t miss this opportunity to make your voice heard. Please join us on:

Wednesday, September 29, 2010 at 5:30 p.m.
start at 5:00 p.m.
Location: Northgate Community Center Gym, 10510 5th Ave NE

Wednesday, October 13, 2010 at 5:30 p.m
start at 5:00 p.m.
South Seattle Community College, The Brockey Center, 6000 16th Ave SW

Tuesday, October 26 at 5:30 p.m.
start at 5:00 p.m.
Council Chambers, 2nd Floor, City Hall, 600 Fourth Ave

Mayor McGinn is scheduled to present his budget proposal two days before the hearings begin – 2 pm September 27th. For the rest of the budget timeline, including other reviews, presentations, and votes, check the city’s budget-process webpage.

Shooting followup: Police identify Alki man, release gun photos

Just in, the update promised by Seattle Police: On their SPD Blotter site, they have identified the man shot by officers Friday night as 59-year-old Thomas Qualls, saying he remains in stable condition; they have identified the officers who shot at him as Sgt. Steve Strand, with 19 years of service, Officer Andy Peloquin, a 16-year veteran, and Officer Mark Gallegos, 1 year with SPD, all from the Southwest Precinct. Also, they have published photos of the guns they say he had. Shown above is the police photo of what SPD is now describing as “the rifle pointed at officers” – on SPD Blotter, you can also see what they call “the suspect’s handgun.”

West Seattle Crime Watch: 3 WS heists blamed on ‘Mrs. Doubtfire’

Remember that surveillance photo? It’s now attached to a nickname. For the first time in a long time, the FBI’s given a nickname to a serial bank robber – and blaming the “Mrs. Doubtfire Bandit” for six heists, including three in West Seattle – the latest, last week’s robbery of the Alaska USA branch in the Westwood Village QFC. From the FBI, the six holdups linked to the same person, and more information:

1. 4/5/2010 – Key Bank , 4701 California Ave SW in Seattle [WSB coverage]
2. 4/28/2010 – Sterling Savings, 224 SW 15nd St in Burien
3. 5/29/2010 – Bank of America, 10623 NE 68th St in Kirkland
4. 6/1/2010 – Viking Bank, 4022 SW Alaska St in Seattle [WSB coverage]
5. 8/7/2010 – Alaska USA, 7300 Roosevelt Way NE in Seattle
6. 8/31/2010 – Alaska USA, 2500 SW Barton in Seattle [WSB coverage]

The suspect uses a note but threatens a weapon and violence. Generally described as a white female, 5’4”, 110 lbs, thin build, 40’s, looks gaunt and sick. We call her the “Mrs. Doubtfire Bandit.” Anyone with information about this individual is asked to contact the FBI by telephone at (206) 622-0460, or e-mail at

Here are two more photos sent by the FBI – left, from the May 29th Kirkland robbery; right, from the one in West Seattle eight days ago.

West Seattle development: Link crane leaving, and other updates

Thanks to Sharonn Meeks in Fairmount for noticing this morning that the big crane at the Triangle construction site for Link (38th south of Fauntleroy) appeared to be coming down – we went over to take a look (another crane is there to help dismantle it), then confirmed with Harbor PropertiesEmi McKittrick that’s indeed what’s happening, seven months after the crane’s arrival. We asked McKittrick for other project updates: Link is scheduled to open around the end of March, and will start pre-leasing apartments in January, she says. They have a letter of intent from vegetarian restaurant Chaco Canyon Café – remember the big reaction to word that Chaco Canyon was looking at Link? – and are negotiating with them. As for the two other retail spaces in Link, she says “a day-care provider” has signed up for one space and will make its announcement soon, while they’re still negotiating with a potential tenant for the third space. McKittrick tells WSB they’re also really excited about the plans for Link’s rooftop garden – they’re planning “urban agriculture” with an edible garden that’ll grow lettuce, carrots, and other types of produce that residents can “take care of, and harvest, and eat!” There’s more Link info online at

And more West Seattle business news: Skylark Café goes 7 days

Lots of West Seattle business changes making news this week – first M3 Bodyworks moved a few blocks north, then Click! Design That Fits announced it’s moving to The Junction, this morning, Square One Books‘ closure, and now, news of changes at Skylark Café and Club (which like M3 and Click! is a WSB sponsor). Announced by proprietor Jessie SK via e-mail newsletter this morning:

Skylark will soon be 7 days a week. You asked for it, you got it…well, actually, you asked for it and we ignored you for a really long time. “We’re a small family-run biz,” we protested. “We need a day off.” The confusion persisted, however, since restaurants close on Mondays, and you all have insisted on perceiving us as a bar. (It’s okay, we forgive you, we don’t mind being a bar. You can bring your kids here though, I swear!)

When will we do the emergency building repairs? When will we sleep? How will our Kitchen Manager have a spare moment to take care of his first child who was just born this weekend? All these questions are answered by announcement number two…

We’re closing for weekday lunch. Fear not! We shall keep our extraordinarily long happy hour (3 pm to 7 pm all seven days of the week) and just open right up with said happy hour on weekdays. We shall most certainly keep our popular and delicious weekend brunch (9 am to 3 pm Saturday AND Sunday).

THESE NEW HOURS ARE EFFECTIVE AS OF TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 14. So weekday lunch ceases at the end of this week, and Monday, September 20 at 3 pm is your first day to come hang out with us [on a Monday].

Feel free to e-mail us feedback or further suggestions, or better yet come on in on a Monday starting September 20th and say hi in person!

Skylark is at 3803 Delridge Way (map), just south of The Bridge, and you can call ahead for takeout, by the way. Plus their almost-world-famous no-cover live music continues – the full calendar can always be found here.

Fauntleroy Fall Festival fundraiser September 17th: Pasta dinner!

September 8, 2010 10:04 am
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 |   Announcements

Just out of the WSB inbox:

The Fauntleroy Fall Festival is having a Pasta Fundraising Dinner
Friday, September 17, 2010, 5:30-7:30 pm

Fellowship Hall & YMCA Gym, Fauntleroy United Church of Christ, 9140 California Avenue SW.

There will be family active games in the YMCA Gym after the meal!

Menu: pasta, red and meat sauce, Caesar salad, garlic bread, lemonade and ice cream!
$5 per person or $20 for a family of 4 or more – pay at the door

Sponsors: Fauntleroy Church, Little Pilgrim School, Fauntleroy Children’s Center, Tuxedoes and Tennis Shoes Catering,
Endolyne Joe’s, West Seattle/Fauntleroy YMCA, Fauntleroy Community Association, NUCOR Steel, Seattle

Any questions, please contact Jenny Mandt
Co-Chair Fauntleroy Fall Festival or (206) 244-1885

West Seattle businesses: Square One Books permanently closed

(Photo added 9:31 am – the letter is posted on the Square One storefront door)
The one-week closure announced by Square One Books in Jefferson Square has turned out to be permanent. Square One’s Gretchen Montgomery made the announcement this morning, asking us to share this letter with you:

I want to let all of my wonderful customers know that Square One Books is closing. I am greatly saddened to have to do this to our West Seattle community of booklovers who have been supporting the store for nearly 23 years. One of the hardest parts of the closing is that I have been unable to let you all know in advance. I wanted to be able to tell all of you and at least have had a closing sale where we could all reminisce and say our goodbyes.

Unfortunately, on the advice of my lawyer, I was unable to do this. I needed to close the store promptly, which meant not be able to say anything to you all when you expressed concern and asked if we were ok.

For the almost 8 years that I have owned the store, I have been trying my hardest to keep the store afloat. Many factors disadvantaged us: the opening of the Westwood Barnes and Noble, increased online purchasing, books being sold everywhere at steep discounts, the economy, high rent, and the recent trend toward e-books.

For years I have taken no salary and have personally taken on more financial debt to keep the store going. I cannot continue to struggle to pay my bills and to be constantly consumed with stress due to my situation. As much as I love the bookstore and my customers, owning the bookstore was no longer good for my mental health, my family and my financial state.

We have had the store for sale for 1.5 years, and while many people want to own a bookstore, there was no interest in purchasing a store with the overhead costs we are carrying at this location. I believe that a new, independent bookstore is needed in West Seattle and that one could succeed in a more favorable spot. I wish I could be the one to move and start again, but I cannot, and I hope that someone is willing to give it a try.

We, myself and my staff, hope to see you all around West Seattle as we have gotten to know so many of you so well over the years. We will miss our bookstore friends; you are all very special people to us. Again, I wish I could have stayed in business for you, and I thank you all for your years of support. I know you tried very hard to keep us here.

Take care,
Gretchen & the Square One Books Staff

ADDED 2:39 PM: We contacted Gretchen to ask a few questions that surfaced in comments and/or were directly e-mailed to us. Here’s her reply:

I will put up info on our door about how gift cards can be handled. … I am in the process of contacting everyone personally that I had special orders for, and if people have any questions, they can email me at or leave a message on our store voicemail at (206) 935-5764, and I will get back to them as soon as I can.

New rabbi at West Seattle’s Kol HaNeshamah for High Holy Days

The Jewish High Holy Days are early this year – starting with the Jewish New Year, Rosh Hashanah, tonight – and local synagogue Kol HaNeshamah is observing for the first time with its new leader, Rabbi Zari Weiss. She spoke with WSB while preparing her sermon for tonight’s service, which along with other High Holy Days celebrations will be held outside West Seattle because there’s just not enough room in their regular home – they’re co-housed with Alki UCC Church.

Rabbi Weiss joined Kol HaNeshamah two months ago, and says she’s gotten to know the congregation as an “incredibly intelligent, creative group of people.” Since KHN has only been in operation for seven years, “parts of the infrastructure are not (yet) in place” – but she’s been working on that along with a new board and new educator, to “build on what’s already been built these last seven years.” High Holy Days, says Rabbi Weiss, provide the synagogue with an opportunity for outreach, since many “non-affiliated” Jews come to the services – KHN will use the chance “to let people know we have a congregation, we have a new rabbi, a whole new way of approaching things.” That includes what she draws from her background in areas such as healing and spiritual exploration – and she says, “by virtue of the fact I am a woman rabbi.”

One thing Kol HaNeshamah has always done differently – no tickets required for High Holy Days services – rather than raising money by charging admission, they have counted on donations, whatever people wish to give. But the services are being held at Seattle First Presbyterian downtown (map) since they may have up to 700 people and there’s just no room for that at Alki UCC.

So what’s in her sermon for tonight? Rabbi Weiss laughed and said she didn’t want to give it all away, but it’s “about the changing nature of the Jewish community.” Her life has changed as well – her last full-time role as a rabbi was in Berkeley, California, before she moved to Seattle in 2001 (ten years after her ordination), but she has served many congregations in this area in a part-time role: “I hadn’t yet found the right community (to serve full-time) – and now I have.”

We asked what’s ahead after the High Holy Days; Rabbi Weiss is planning a series of classes, workshops, readings, discussions, and more, to “explore what it really means to be Jewish, and to be a Jewish community in the 21st century.” The dates aren’t all worked out yet; you can watch the KHN website for details. And if you haven’t already checked out the synagogue – you are welcome at their services and celebrations this season, wherever you are on your spiritual journey. Here’s the official announcement of what’s planned and where:

WHERE: Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur services are held at Seattle First Presbyterian, 1013 8th Ave., Seattle.
WHEN: Wed., Sept 8 – 7:30 p.m. Rosh Hashanah Evening service
Thurs., Sept. 9 -9:30 a.m. – 10 a.m., Rosh Hashanah Children’s service
10:30 a.m., Rosh Hashanah morning service; Tashlich picnic follows at Madrona Park Picnic Shelter, 853 Lake Washington Blvd.
Fri., Sept 17 – 7:30 p.m. Kol Nidre service
Sat., Sept. 18 – 9:30 a.m. – 10 a.m., Yom Kippur children’s service
10:30 a.m., Yom Kippur morning service
2 p.m. – 4 p.m., study sessions
4 p.m., Afternoon services with light break fast following

West Seattle Wednesday: Back to school! – and more

Hours after the big ribboncutting celebration at Chief Sealth International High School, work continued to get the renovated campus ready for about 1,000 students to arrive today – including installation of the electronic screen atop the school’s new streetside sign. And a few blocks west:

Portable speed monitors are up on SW Thistle, both directions, between 38th and 39th. Not that the weather this morning is too conducive to speeding, but this is a busy arterial leading to both Sealth and nearby Denny International Middle School. Sealth and Denny are just two of the Seattle Public Schools campuses in West Seattle that start classes today – also including West Seattle High School, Madison Middle School, Pathfinder K-8, and these elementaries: Roxhill, Arbor Heights, Highland Park, Gatewood, Sanislo, Schmitz Park, Lafayette, and Alki (West Seattle Elementary opened last week) – this is the first year of the transition to a “neighborhood school” system, with entering classes such as K, 6th, and 9th the first to get the new assignments. Independent schools Westside School, Explorer West Middle School, and Shorewood Christian School are open starting today too – be careful EVERYWHERE you drive. Also happening today/tonight: As previewed here yesterday, the 34th District Democrats meet tonight, with the agenda including their endorsement decision in the 34th District State House Position 2 race (7 pm, The Hall at Fauntleroy) … West Seattle synagogueKol HaNeshamah celebrates Rosh Hashanah at 7:30 pm, Seattle First Presbyterian (1013 8th Ave.), more on that in a story coming up later this morning … at noon, Alki Lumber Jim Sweeney receives the Kiwanis Everyday Hero Award from the Kiwanis Club of West Seattle at 12 noon at Be’s Restaurant (4509 California – $8 for lunch) … And it’s opening night for “Reasons to Be Pretty” at ArtsWest … More on the calendar!

Update: Schedule for Alki Family Fun Day – dog parade and all!

September 8, 2010 6:14 am
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 |   Alki Statue of Liberty | Fun stuff to do | West Seattle news

This Sunday’s the big day for the Alki Community Council-presented Family Fun Day and Bluegrass Concert (first previewed here last month) at Alki Statue of Liberty Plaza. And this morning, the schedule of events is out, starting with a welcome at noon and the Dog Parade at 12:30, continuing through a Kids’ Talent Show and other entertainment, then concluding with a bluegrass concert. In addition, ACC says 25 vendors will have booths by the plaza, including “an authors’ table open to published writers of West Seattle.” Read on for full (free!) details:Read More