day : 15/12/2010 10 results

West Seattle (and vicinity) holidays: White Center tree lighting

Just a week after the White Center Chamber of Commerce announced plans for a community Christmas tree in the small park area at the end of the Delridge Triangle (on the city side, so West Seattle can claim it too), the tree was lighted in a ceremony tonight. Video/photojournalist Cliff DesPeaux was there for WSB and partner site White Center Now. If you haven’t followed the backstory on WCN, the “power” to which nearby pub owner “Mac” McElroy refers in the clip is electric power – with the help of Seattle City Light, the area got connected earlier this week, which also makes lighting possible for the flag that flies over the triangle as part of a veterans’ memorial.

West Seattle Trader Joe’s: Permit process picks up

(Rendering provided by Trader Joe’s with the June West Seattle announcement)
Update for those who drive by the future West Seattle Trader Joe’s location (4545 Fauntleroy Way SW) and wonder when you’ll see signs of remodeling activity: There’s finally a bit of motion in that direction. If you have been following the saga, you know that last time we talked to a spokesperson for the property owner, the company told him they were about to officially apply for permits. That didn’t happen quite as immediately as expected, but the online Department of Planning and Development files are finally showing activity – and we know it’s brand-new, not just because of the dates, but because we’ve checked the online files for the site every day since the June announcement, so we know when something has changed. Putting it all together from the outside is a bit like assembling a jigsaw puzzle, but here goes: First, there’s a new, separate land-use permit application file here, with the summary:

Land use application to allow 29 parking stalls for a total of 76 parking stalls in an environmentally critical area. Project includes change of use from automotive sales and service to general retail sales and service (Trader Joe’s), modifications to front façade to create new entry and exit tower, elevator and stairwell.

The “fees and receipts” tab on the same DPD webpage indicates a variety of fees paid just yesterday, including one for the Land Use Information Bulletin, which means an official comment period is likely to open for this shortly, when you see a city informational sign go up at the site. And new contacts have been added, including a Redmond architecture firm, and a corporate contact at TJ’s HQ in Southern California. In addition, that page points to another case number for an additional address on the site – 4527 Fauntleroy Way – with its own set of fees marked as paid today. Meantime, according to the “inspections” tab on this DPD page, a “pre-application site visit” happened last week. We’ve had a request out for corporate comment for a few days, no reply so far, so reading the paperwork tea leaves yields the most information at this point.

Admiral Neighborhood Assoc.: Turning the calendar, moving ahead

ANA leaders (from left) Mark Wainwright, Katy Walum, and Gary Williamson with their new banner.

Story and photo by Jason Grotelueschen
Reporting for West Seattle Blog

The mood was festive at the final meeting of 2010 for the Admiral Neighborhood Association at the Admiral Church on Tuesday night, as the group celebrated a successful year and looked forward to 2011.

ANA President Katy Walum thanked the group’s volunteers for their hard work and dedication, and passed around a two-page list of “2010 Activities and Accomplishments” (which will be revised and posted online in January) that emphasized just how much the group has been up to. Here’s a summary:

Walum unveiled the group’s new banner (pictured above), notecards and letterhead, featuring their new logo. She also reminded attendees that the group’s new Admiral apparel (pictures here) “make great holiday gifts,” and encouraged anyone to e-mail her at if they’re interested in buying some — $40 jackets, $15 t-shirts, $10 kids’ shirts.

Other meeting notes:

Read More

West Seattle storm aftermath: Updates on Beach Drive & potholes

In case you were wondering: We checked in with SDOT this afternoon on two post-storm road issues. SDOT spokesperson Marybeth Turner sent answers. First, on the Beach Drive slide:

SDOT has a bit of work to complete on Beach Drive SW. Crews will continue working on it tomorrow. Until then, the roadway will remain restricted to one shared lane.

Second, we asked about the strategy for re-filling the potholes that lost their fill during the deluge – we noticed multiple cases along Alki Avenue SW while driving around on Sunday morning, and published this photo in our ongoing coverage that day:

The SDOT reply:

Thanks for asking about potholes. We are receiving lots of pothole requests from all areas of the city, at times several reports for the same pothole. We have crews out in force to fill them.

If you want to report one – 206-684-ROAD, or use this online form.

New owner, renovations announced for West Seattle’s only motel


(WSB photo from 2008)
Seattle West Inn, the former TraveLodge in The Triangle, is about to get a makeover under its new ownership, according to a news release just out of the WSB inbox. Working on more details, but for starters, from the news release (which you can read in its entirety here):

Saddle Rock Hospitality has assumed management of the Seattle West Inn, West Seattle’s only motel. The motel was recently acquired by a local investment group committed to reinvestment in the property with a goal of repositioning the motel in the marketplace.

Seattle-based Seattle Rock Hospitality took over management of the property in early October. Hotel veteran Joey Disque will oversee the motel operations and renovation. The motel concept, once complete, will offer price/value-appropriate lodging with a unique guest service paradigm for today’s traveler. The facility, services, and environment will facilitate contemporary guest activity by offering ‘most-valued’ amenities and self-enabled services.

“With our 50 guest rooms and more than 1,000 square feet of meeting space, this property has immense potential to be a draw for business and leisure travelers as well as a convenient location to host meetings and local events,” said Joey. …

Renovation plans include updated guest rooms, the addition of food and beverage services, full-service meeting and banquet facilities and new landscaping including the addition of an outdoor patio. The facility offers a variety of length-of-stay accommodations including the standard overnight as well as a mix of extended stay rooms and suites. Renovation is expected to begin in early 2011, during which time the property will remain open for business.

At one point, Harbor Properties – which has almost finished building the mixed-use Link nearby – was considering buying this site, but the deal was never completed. County records show the site was sold in September for $3 million; its previous owners bought it almost 11 years ago for $2.4 million. Its new owner is SSLL, LLC, whose partners include one of the owners of two properties across 36th from the motel site; another owner of those properties’ is also owner of the commercial building immediately north of the motel.

West Seattle holidays: Hotwire’s Festivus; TV lights; caroling

December 15, 2010 1:52 pm
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 |   Holidays | West Seattle news

Three more holiday notes this afternoon:

FESTIVUS AT HOTWIRE: This is as official as Festivus (TV-show-inspired anti-holiday explained here) is going to get in West Seattle. If you haven’t been to Hotwire Online Coffeehouse (WSB sponsor) lately, a Festivus Pole is up with notes all over (we took our photo some days back, so it’s likely even more “well-decorated” now) it. The official Airing of the Grievances is Thursday, December 23rd, 10 am. And before then, you can donate to the new Hotwire Pet Giving Tree, with the theme “Festivus: For the Pets of Us“:

Besides having sponsored WSB continuously for more than three years, Hotwire is also one of the participants in our West Seattle Holiday Shopping Guide.

Meantime, more renown for the Helmstetler Family Spectacular Christmas lights by the Charlestown water tower:

EVENING MAGAZINE SPOTLIGHTS ‘THE LIGHTS’: After sending crews over multiple times while the lights were going up and then on the official first night just after Thanksgiving, KING 5‘s Evening Magazine aired the full story last night – you can see it in its entirety above. The ongoing show at 3908 SW Charlestown has its own website, with schedules, special events, and other info, at

YOU’RE INVITED TO JOIN COMMUNITY CAROLING THIS FRIDAY! We mentioned this as a side note the other day, and it’s on the still-frequently-updated West Seattle Holidays page now, but in case you missed it: You are invited to go caroling with an informal group planning to gather this Friday night – here’s the invite, shared by Karrie:

Hey neighbor!

Come Christmas Caroling with us this Friday night!

What: Spread holiday spirit, sing & socialize
Meet at: Greg Davis Park at corner of Brandon and 26th Ave SW [map]
When: Friday 12/17 at 7 pm (we’ll head north on 26th at 715 pm)
Bring: Flashlight for reading songs, umbrella, a warm drink, jingle bells

We’ll have copies of many traditional Christmas songs but all faiths and songs are welcome. If you have a favorite, make lots of copies to share and be ready to lead us in the tune. Neighbors in Delridge and High Point joined forces to plan this and we hope to make it an annual event.

Hope to see you there, rain or snow!

West Seattle Crime Watch: ‘Who could do such a thing?’

From Ray:

Our Volvo wagon was broken into overnight. It was parked in our alley carport between Graham and Morgan/ 39th and 38th Sts. SW. (map) They rifled through the glove box and another compartment between the front seats. They took our daughter’s canvas swim bag from the back seat and scattered its contents down the alley: a purple swim cap, one pair of blue goggles, a green diamondback suit, a YMCA card. The sight of her cherished swim gear trashed in the alley was quite the cold awakening this morning for our seven year old. “Who could do such a thing?” she cried.

Another sad reminder, as per the current SPD awareness campaign, that *nothing* is safe, left in a vehicle – even if you are sure it’s something in which no thief would take an interest.

Update: Junction Hometown Holidays Santa’s fundraising success

(Santa photo by Donna Ryan Photography)
Two more Hometown Holidays (co-sponsored by WSB) events ahead in The Junction this week – another Shop Late Thursday tomorrow, then the third and final round of professional Santa photos and mule-drawn carriage rides 11 am-3 pm on Sunday. The Santa photos by Donna Ryan Photography raise money for local nonprofits, and West Seattle Junction Association‘s Susan Melrose just sent an update:

The Junction’s Santa Photo/Fundraising is going great. This is the Junction Association’s 6th year hosting Santa photos and a greater success is being achieved every year. In our 3rd year working with Donna Ryan Photography, we are not only delivering beautiful photos to West Seattle families, but also raising funds for community members in need. The first weekend raised more than $800 for WestSide Baby, last weekend raised more than $1,000 for the West Seattle Helpline, and this Sunday we’ll be raising funds for the West Seattle Food Bank. Thank you, West Seattle families, for participating in this holiday tradition.

And while you’re in The Junction for Shop Late Thursday, shopping any time (our 21 Holiday Shopping Guide sponsors include 11 Junction stores), or Hometown Holidays Sunday, get in on the $4,600 raffle, too.

Video: Westside Symphony, WS Big Band holiday concert

December 15, 2010 9:22 am
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 |   Holidays | West Seattle news | WS culture/arts

Holiday favorites resounded through the Chief Sealth International High School auditorium last night as the Westside Symphony and West Seattle Big Band teamed up for a holiday concert. Our top clip features the symphony performing four selections from “The Nutcracker” – conducted by Rob Duisberg (who you may also know as the Lincoln Park bee rescuer). This is the first year for the group to perform as part of the West Seattle Community Orchestras, the new umbrella name for what was Westside Symphonette – this is the older group (the younger groups performed their holiday concert last week). One more selection from last night: WSBB and symphony musicians played several crowd-singalong songs together, including “Winter Wonderland” under the direction of the orchestra group’s founder Toni Reineke:

You can find out more about the WS Big Band here; the WS Community Orchestras are always welcoming new musicians and usually practice Tuesdays at CSIHS – find out more about them here.

West Seattle Wednesday: Sealth vote; Delridge council; tree

December 15, 2010 8:43 am
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 |   West Seattle news | WS miscellaneous

First thing in today’s preview: Chief Sealth International High School band director Marcus Pimpleton reminds us here that today’s the last day to vote for Sealth in the online Battle of the Bands – that link explains how, as does our original story … From the West Seattle Holidays page, 2 holiday parties tonight: The West Seattle Chamber of Commerce‘s holiday party is tonight at Salty’s on Alki, 5 pm, and the 34th District Democrats, 6:30 pm at The Hall at Fauntleroy, plus a port-wine tasting at Bin 41 (WSB sponsor and part of our deal-laden Holiday Shopping Guide), 5:30-7 pm … The Delridge Neighborhoods District Council has its monthly meeting an hour earlier than usual, 6 pm, including a presentation about proposed Duwamish River habitat restoration, then a holiday potluck at 7 (Youngstown Cultural Arts Center, 4408 Delridge Way) … At the south end of Delridge, the new White Center Community Christmas Tree will be lit at 7 pm … And two events are on the calendar this morning: The Funeral Mass for Tony’s Market proprietor Tony Genzale, 10:30 am at St. Francis of Assisi in Burien (16226 21st SW) as detailed here, and the “One World” discussion series at the Senior Center of West Seattle tackles “Winter Holidays Across Cultures” at 10:45 am (California and Oregon in The Junction).