West Seattle, Washington
If you are not part of the local writing scene, you might know West Seattle poet Nicole Hardy best for her work at Circa in the Admiral District. One week ago, a national/international audience got to know her because of her essay published in the New York Times, “Single, Female, Mormon, Alone.” Tonight, Nicole Brodeur of the Seattle Times (WSB partner) follows up with Hardy and reports that the essay was received so sensationally, she now has an agent and a new book deal. (She’s already published two books of poetry, which you can read about on her website.)
Many people spent this MLK Day as they spent previous ones – volunteering in ways big and small. Some joined in organized events; some came up with their own, as did Annabelle Allen, Hayden and Anne Wainwright, and Molly Allen: Sharing the photo, Mark Wainwright described their efforts as an “impromptu … Day of Service,” explaining:
They picked up a bunch of trash along California from Charlestown to Hinds. Great work, kiddos! (And thanks to the moms, Jane and Shana, for the encouragement!
As the CD release party for Pearl Jam‘s “Live on Ten Legs” got going at Feedback Lounge (WSB sponsor) less than an hour ago, it was so wall-to-wall, we barely had room to get Shawnte, Mollie, and Melissa to pose with their newly purchased copies of the CD and vinyl versions. Easy Street Records is there selling the album, Ten Club is there selling merchandise, and The Feedback has on-loan rare PJ memorabilia on display (in addition to their existing collection):
We’re told the party continues the rest of the night. Or till closing, whichever comes first. Next special event, Fiasco plays live, as a benefit for a nonprofit helping multiple-sclerosis patients, January 29th.
We took that photo tonight after Judy forwarded us the e-mail she received about the upcoming closure of Museum Quality Framing in the Admiral District (2352 California SW). Though the sign says it’s “moving,” the e-mail announcement says the store is “closing” and invites customers to patronize a South Lake Union location after this one closes January 27th. This will leave West Seattle with at least four framing stores by our unofficial count – Artistic Framers, Northwest Art and Frame, U-Frame-It, and Wallflower Custom Framing. (P.S. Yes, the store that’s closing is the same one a car drove into last May.)
(One of the underground rooms at Lowman Beach’s Murray Pump Station, from a tour last June)
And another preview for the week ahead: The Morgan Community Association only meets quarterly, so when they get together, the agenda is info-packed. On the agenda for Wednesday night, 7 pm, lower level of The Kenney, hot topics from street changes along California SW and 48th SW, to planning this year’s Morgan Junction Community Festival, to the recent recommendation for how to reduce combined-sewer overflows (CSO) into Puget Sound at Lowman Beach’s Murray Pump Station (above). As we reported in early December, the county is recommending a Murray solution that will require the purchase of private property across from Lowman Beach Park (we followed up with MoCA’s response); King County’s Martha Tuttle is scheduled to be at Wednesday night’s meeting with an update on where it stands and how the recommendation was reached. MoCA also will talk Wednesday night about its new Facebook page (you can “like” it here), and soon-to-retire Crime Prevention Coordinator Benjamin Kinlow will discuss neighborhood safety. See the full MoCA agenda here.
Continuing our look ahead to the post-holiday week: Volunteering opportunities like tabling at the West Seattle Farmers’ Market – where Micah Summers (above) led a home-brewing demonstration yesterday – are part of what Sustainable West Seattle will discuss at its monthly Community Forum tomorrow night (6:30 pm Tuesday, Senior Center of West Seattle, California/Oregon). Lots of other projects you can get involved with, including the forthcoming SWS film series. Other planned presentations include the West Seattle Wildlife Habitat Project and the Salish Sea Transport Co-op.
As this MLK Day holiday Monday winds up, we’re looking ahead at some of what’s in store for the rest of the week. Tomorrow, for the first time in 2 months, the West Seattle Crime Prevention Council meets (7 pm Tuesday, Southwest Precinct, Delridge/Webster). In addition to police updates on local crime trends, WSCPC has a guest speaker on the agenda; Robert Gant, who works with local youth as part of the staff at Southwest Youth and Family Services.
Once again this year, local law-enforcement leaders will be part of the Polar Plunge at Alki Beach, raising money for Special Olympics/Washington. WSB is proud to be co-sponsoring the Polar Plunge again in its second West Seattle year. Just got word from organizers today that Seattle Police Chief John Diaz will be taking the plunge again this time – and Southwest Precinct commander Capt. Steve Paulsen confirms to WSB that he will follow in his predecessor Capt. Joe Kessler‘s water-shoed-footsteps by doing the same. You can form a team or go it alone to be part of Polar Plunge on Saturday, January 29, plunging at noon, after awards at 11:15 am, and a pre-plunge performance from the Seahawks’ Blue Thunder drum line. If you register and raise the $50 minimum, you get a T-shirt and a cup of Ivar’s chowder – sign up now by going here; we’ll see you there!
We’re at UW’s Hec Ed Pavilion, where Chief Sealth International High School‘s boys-varsity basketball team just beat Bellevue High School, 60-58, as part of the two-day King Holiday Hoopfest. More to come!
3:03 PM UPDATE: Our first clip shows the team taking the floor in the big arena. WSB co-publisher Patrick Sand covered the game at Hec Ed, and reports:
Chief Sealth took advantage of Bellevue’s foul trouble late in the game to put up a 60-58 win at the 2011 King Holiday Hoopfest, at Hec Ed Pavilion on the UW campus. Both teams had foul trouble throughout the game, but Sealth’s rough patch came early. In the first quarter, Bellevue had 12 points, most from free throws. The Wolverines held onto a steady lead for most of three quarters due to Sealth leading the game in turnovers with 25. But late in the third quarter the Seahawks’ Pepe Hernandez and Keon Lewis worked to bring their team a one-point lead going into the fourth quarter. From there Bellevue’s foul problems kept them for regaining the lead.
After the game Coach Colin Slingby met the media along with Lewis and Hernandez:
Lewis and D’nique Harris-Welch were Sealth’s high scorers with 18 points each. Bellevue’s standout player was Nate Sikma, who had 27 points Nate is the son of former Sonic Jack Sikma. No break for Sealth – big game tomorrow night at home against Rainier Beach.
ORIGINAL 11:58 AM REPORT: That traffic-cam screengrab from a few minutes ago shows a vehicle fire that’s being put out in the Terminal 5 area, on West Seattle’s side of the Port. We don’t have information on the fire itself yet but received a call that traffic on the “low bridge” is being forced to turn around – so wanted to send out a heads-up.
(Photos by Christopher Boffoli, added 12:50 pm)
UPDATE: Christopher Boffoli is at the scene. He says the cab of a tractor-trailer caught fire. The driver got out OK, and the cargo (a load of paper) appears to be all right. No word on the cause. This is right on the west end of the low bridge, and they’re starting to let traffic through again, but he says there’s still a notable backup.
Video added 2:16 pm; no official word so far on the fire’s cause.
(Photo courtesy of Rhonda Porter)
If you would be interested in living in and caring for what has to be the most unusual home/garden pairing in West Seattle today – Lita has an offer for you. She e-mailed WSB to share the news that the Walker Rock Garden and Home are for sale:
I am the granddaughter of Milton and Florence Walker, the creators of the Walker Rock Garden (located at 5407 37th Ave SW, West Seattle). We (my aunt, cousin, and myself) are placing the Walker Rock Garden and Home for sale as we can longer maintain it. … We’re hoping to drum up interest amongst locals and ultimately find someone whose heart lies in keeping the garden healthy and happy (and hopefully allowing the public to still visit).
The Walker Rock Garden, created by Lita’s grandparents over the span of 20 years, is one of those places you have to see to appreciate. Photos do hint at its memorable sights – here’s a gallery shared by Lita; here’s one by Rhonda “The Mortgage Porter” Porter (WSB sponsor). Others who have written about it include Lori Hinton in “West Seattle 101“ and West Seattle-based online entrepreneur/eclectica expert Jerry at JetCityOrange.com (his page about Walker Rock Garden is here).
The site is not an official landmark, so there’s no official guarantee of its protection. Lita shared this official flyer; we asked her a few followup questions such as asking price (not mentioned on the flyer, nor could we find a listing online) and whether they’ll have an open house – we’ll add her answers when they come in.
ADDED 8:50 PM: Lita replied:
The property will be listed on the MLS near the start of February and the price has yet to be determined. However, we wanted to get the word out so anyone interested in preserving can start to look at their finances. Also, because we do not yet know who the next owners will be, this very well could be the last year the garden will be open, so come check it out before it is too late. The hours can be found at walkerrockgarden.net.
She says they will not be requesting an official agreement that the buyer would preserve the rock garden.
A memorial service is planned this Saturday for Ann Owchar, a longtime West Seattle community advocate and volunteer. In a note shared on community lists, her daughter announced Ms. Owchar “passed away peacefully after a courageous battle with a very rare and debilitating form of dementia.” Until her illness, Ms. Owchar continued to represent the Highland Park Action Committee on the Southwest District Council. She was also active in its battle against the city’s proposed jail sites in Highland Park; she joined Monica Cavagnero and then-HPAC chair Dorsol Plants in speaking to the 34th District Democrats about it in summer 2008:
Later that year, HPAC honored her, as reported here, for her decades of community service:
(Photos courtesy of Dina Lydia Johnson, who also designed the certificate)
Ms. Owchar also volunteered tirelessly for other causes/groups including Soroptimist. Sharing news of her death via the North Delridge mailing list, city Neighborhood District Coordinator Ron Angeles noted, “Delridge is a better place for all people to live and grow due to Ann’s never ending love for her community. She will be missed by many.” Ms. Owchar’s memorial service is at noon Saturday at Howden-Kennedy, 3909 SW Alaska, and will be followed by a reception at her daughter’s home at 3726 SW Webster. Ms. Owchar was 81.
MLK DAY HOLIDAY: It’s Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day; here’s our list of holiday changes, first published last night, including Metro on “reduced weekday” service, and no Water Taxi. P.S. The official regional MLK Day Celebration is at Garfield High School (map) in the Central District this year, with workshops at 9:30 am, march at noon.
ALSO HAPPENING: Chief Sealth International High School boys-varsity-basketball team plays in the King Holiday Hoopfest at UW Hec Ed Pavilion, 11 am (details in this WSB story). We got a quick quote from Sealth head coach Colin Slingsby about their opponent today, Bellevue HS:
We’ll tweet live from the game at our @wsblive account.
Tonight Feedback Lounge (WSB sponsor) hosts the CD release party for Pearl Jam‘s newest, 9 pm (Easy Street Records will be selling it at the Feedback) … Mondays mean Fundraising Scrabble at Skylark Café and Club (WSB sponsor), 7 pm registration, 7:15 pm game (details here) – $5 to play, benefiting charity, prizes … More on the calendar!