day : 19/05/2011 17 results

Europe spotlight for longtime WSB contributor Christopher Boffoli


(Photo from ‘Disparity,’ published here in 2008)
You may know Christopher Boffoli best for breaking-news photographs here on WSB, over the past three-plus years – like the ones from today’s bank robbery (after he spotted two of the apparent robbers fleeing down his Junction alley). But tonight, readers in the U.K. have learned about him as the photographer who’s introduced tiny figurines to food (among other things), in shots like the one above. His ongoing series “Disparity” has just been showcased by both the Daily Mail (here) and The Telegraph (here). We asked Christopher how the UK found him; he explained, “I was recently approached by some editors from a newspaper/magazine syndication company in Europe who saw the image on a professional photography website called 500px. They did an interview a couple of weeks ago and asked for a bunch of images. I didn’t really know what would come of it. But then today a friend in the UK saw it and sent me the link.”

Taste of West Seattle fills Hall at Fauntleroy with flavor, generosity

For the hundreds who came to tonight’s Taste of West Seattle, it provided a chance to sample dozens of food and beverage providers from around WS/White Center. But the photo above is what it was really about – raising money so the West Seattle Helpline can keep offering a lifeline to people in need. Metropolitan Market (WSB sponsor) presented a $5,000 check to outgoing Helpline executive director Anna Fern (she’s retiring) and her team – and they’re thrilled; it was just a few days ago they put out an emergency challenge to help cover unexpected expenses. Now, on to the sightings, starting with the Full Tilt Ice Cream family:

That’s Justin Cline, Ann Magyar, and son. More sightings – including first-time appearances for some of our area’s newest eating/drinking spots – ahead:Read More

West Seattle Crime Watch: Cell-phone theft-spree arrests

Earlier this week, a note came in, suggesting we look into a pattern of thefts. The anonymous tipster wrote in part:

3 students have reported having their cellphones stolen from them while waiting at bus stops in West Seattle. All 3 students have filed police reports accordingly. The first one happened during the last week of March, the most recent happened within the last week. Each of them happened at different bus stops, but all have happened in West Seattle.

Each student was approached by a young person they did not know, who either asked to use the student’s phone for an emergency or simply asked to see the time. If the student resisted, they were bullied by the stranger & the stranger’s friends. When the students did take out their phones, the stranger grabbed the phones and ran away with their friends.

Two of the victims also were assaulted, wrote the tipster. But before we could finish investigating this to write about it – we found out that the Southwest Precinct has a break in the case. After we saw Lt. Pierre Davis at the Alki Community Council meeting tonight, he shared this exuberant report:

While conducting surveillance, the SW ACT Team watched one of the possible suspects steal a cell phone from a victim. They did a stake-out on the suspect’s residence and arrested the suspect when he exited. A search incident to the arrest located the stolen cell phone. Our SW ACT Team also located the other involved suspects and arrested them as well. Crime spree over!!! Winning!!!!!

Next step – we’ll be seeking to find out who the suspects are and what happens to them in the jail/court system.

Alki Community Council: Sunday=Fun Day; Seal Sitters briefing…

May 19, 2011 8:16 pm
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 |   Neighborhoods | West Seattle news | Wildlife

Big stuff at the beach, starting with Sunday’s big events – read on for toplines from the Alki Community Council meeting just concluded:Read More

Another student in SIFF spotlight: Lafayette Elementary’s Luca Rose

That’s “Our Grass Is Always Greener,” a film by Lafayette Elementary fifth-grader Luca Rose, one of three youth-category wnners in the SIFF (Seattle International Film Festival) Three-Minute Masterpiece competition. The grand-prize award will be presented at 10 am this Saturday (May 21st) at Seattle Center, during a special screening event (call 206-324-9996 for free tickets). Luca’s dad Tim Rose wrote the song; the cast includes three of Luca’s classmates – Olivia D’Amico, Johnny McConaghy, and Kenny Arnold. (Want to know more about the competition? Here you go.)

More SDOT work ahead: New sidewalk on the way

May 19, 2011 6:39 pm
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 |   Safety | Transportation | West Seattle news

SDOT announced late today that crews will be “filling in a missing section of sidewalk SW Barton Place at 22nd Avenue SW [map]. They will start installing the new sidewalk on Monday, May 23, and expect to complete the work in about one week. The parking lane at this location will be closed. The crews will work from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.”

Update: Police seek 3 robbers in West Seattle Viking Bank holdup

(6:07 PM UPDATE: Seattle Police have released their official summary. Adding that, and more photos, below)

ORIGINAL 3:50 PM REPORT: Police are at Viking Bank in The Junction – and nearby – looking for bank robbers. Seattle Police say three people robbed the bank. According to Officer Renée Witt in the media-response unit, they were described as possibly armed, three Hispanic men in their 20s, medium build, one wearing a red bandanna, black or dark hoodie, with black sweat pants.

3:57 PM UPDATE: Just added a photo. And yes, that’s what the helicopter is doing over The Junction.

4:30 PM UPDATE: The FBI is on scene as well as Seattle Police, since they have jurisdiction in bank robberies. Multiple witnesses report that some evidence was found, but there is no word of arrests. No injuries either, in case you were wondering.

(This photos and others below, all by Christopher Boffoli for WSB unless otherwise credited)
4;49 PM UPDATE: There have been anecdotal reports that some area schools’ afterschool programs sheltered in place while the search was on. We’re having trouble getting anyone on the phone to confirm this – but in case you are worried, know that NO INJURIES ARE REPORTED ANYWHERE as a result of the robbery or the search. Meantime, according to what Christopher Boffoli photographed, they left significant evidence behind:

5:05 PM UPDATE: Teresa Wippel from Seattle Public Schools confirms that Madison Middle School did decide to have the students who were still on campus “shelter in place” – some were outside when the school heard about the robbery, and the school decided – it was a unilateral decision, not a police order – to bring them in. Wippel says they also called the parents of students who would usually go home by themselves, and they escorted students to school buses.

6:07 PM UPDATE: Police have just published their summary of the robbery at SPD Blotter. Click ahead to see it in full, along with more of our photos:Read More

FREE! Bert’s Auto Leaks Class Series at SSCC

May 19, 2011 3:09 pm
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 |   Announcements

Tracy this needs a jazzy intro

Help Bert the Salmon keep oil and other fluid leaks from your car from harming our local waterways and wildlife. Join the experts at South Seattle Community College’s Automotive Technology Program for a FREE auto leaks class. Learn where most leaks occur and how to fix them.

Saturdays, 9 am to 1 pm on June 4, July 9, August 13, and September 24.
All participants will receive a FREE assessment of their car and a leak and spill kit.

Email or call 206-386-9746 to register.

Followup: More explanation of Sunday’s Alki road closures

If you’re still confused about this Sunday’s plan for Alki-area road closures in connection with the West Seattle 5K (online registration till 6 tonight!) and Seattle Summer Streets – a shorter all-day distance than previous years, as we first reported on Monday – SDOT has sent out a letter to residents that has been shared with WSB by the Alki Community Council (which discusses the event again during its monthly meeting tonight). Read on for the excerpt detailing the closure zone (also, added at 2:53 pm, Metro’s alert for the 56 reroute):Read More

West Seattle schools: New job for Arbor Heights principal

Arbor Heights Elementary‘s principal Dr. Carol Coram is leaving her job at the end of the school year, according to a letter she has sent to members of the school community. Dr. Coram cites health reasons as deciding to take a different job, that of assistant principal at Denny International Middle School. No word on her replacement at AH. Read on for full text of her message (thanks to those who tipped us on this):Read More

Bike to Work Day tomorrow: ‘Commute station’ under The Bridge

View Bike Month Activities & Bike to Work Day Stations in a larger map

The near-perfect weather is expected to continue for tomorrow’s Bike to Work Day around the area. One of the 41 “commuter stations” set up for the occasion 6-9 am will, as usual, be at the west end of West Seattle’s “low bridge,” according to the map set up by the Cascade Bicycle Club Education Foundation. Its official announcement of the event also includes word of two regional events: a morning rally 7:30-8:30 am outside City Hall, 600 4th Avenue downtown, and an “after-party” in Ballard, along 22nd NW between Market Street and Ballard Avenue (part of Seattle Summer Streets, which closes Alki from 56th-63rd SW on Sunday, 11 am-5 pm, after the 9 am-11 am closure from 63rd to Don Armeni for the West Seattle 5K).

Fauntleroy crash: Close call for 2 drivers, and a shop

In case you passed by and wondered what happened – not a major crash but certainly an unusual sight: In the past half-hour, WSB contributor Katie Meyer checked out this crash outside the pawn shop at Fauntleroy/Edmunds. As the top photo shows, close call for the store. Katie reports neither driver was hurt; too soon to say how they wound up in this side-by-side crash formation. Tow trucks were on the way.

(Disclosure: We have blurred the license plates in the top photo.)

How to help: 2 successes, plus a call for Alki Art Fair sponsors

May 19, 2011 10:30 am
|    Comments Off on How to help: 2 successes, plus a call for Alki Art Fair sponsors
 |   How to help | West Seattle news | WS culture/arts

2 notes this morning with more evidence of West Seattleites’ generosity, plus a chance to help out with an upcoming event:

NUCOR ‘TOUR FOR THE CURE’ FULLY BOOKED: As announced here yesterday, Nucor’s Relay for Life-West Seattle team is raising money by offering three plant tours on June 4th. This morning, Nucor’s Tricia Sweat sends word they have already booked all the spaces! (The cancer-fighting Relay, with WSB among the co-sponsors this year, is June 10-11.)

FAUNTLEROY FALL FESTIVAL FUNDRAISER UPDATE: Tuesday night’s Endolyne Joe’s dinner/raffle fundraiser brought in more than $2,000 (a third of the festival’s budget), according to Judy Pickens – $1,189 from restaurant proceeds, and $975 for four raffle baskets – $975. She adds, “Many thanks to everyone at Endolyne Joe’s, all donors to the raffle baskets, and the community volunteers who invested many hours for the love of the Fauntleroy Fall Festival (Oct. 16)!”

ATTENTION, WEST SEATTLE BUSINESSES – ALKI ART FAIR NEEDS SPONSORS: As we’ve reported, the fair is on, even though Alki Community Center‘s staff and operations have been curtailed by city budget cuts – the Advisory Council and the fair’s Organizing Committee are moving forward, and the fair is set for July 23 and 24. However, community support is needed in a BIG way, and they are calling now for sponsors. Read on for the full announcement:Read More

West Seattle Thursday: ‘Taste’; Alki Council; speed bumps; stair/road work; more!

(Boat-topped barge in Elliott Bay on Saturday – photo by Tom Marx)
From the WSB West Seattle Events calendar:

TASTE OF WEST SEATTLE: Bigger than ever, with dozens of local food/beverage enterprises participating, tonight is the Taste of West Seattle, fundraiser for the West Seattle Helpline, at The Hall at Fauntleroy, 6-9 pm. Online ticket sales are closed but Helpline says a few tickets will be available at the door – go early if you want to try for those.

ALKI COMMUNITY COUNCIL: Sunday’s Summer Streets party plans (remember – different closures this year) and Seal Sitters are part of tonight’s Alki Community Council meeting agenda, 7 pm, Alki UCC (6112 SW Hinds).

SEAVIEW SPEED BUMPS?: Tonight is SDOT‘s community meeting to discuss four potential sets of speed bumps on 48th SW between SW Brandon and SW Graham. 7 pm at Seaview Methodist Churchdetails here.

WESTBOUND SPOKANE STREET VIADUCT CLOSURE: If you’ll be driving back toward West Seattle overnight, take note of this closure (and a couple upcoming) – details here.

STAIRCASE WORK UNDER WAY: The SW Spokane stairway over Beach Drive is being rehabbed and prep work is under way now, according to this advisory just published by SDOT.

LOW-LOW TIDE: Low tides (vicinity of minus three feet) again today in the noon hour (here’s the chart).

SOUTH SEATTLE COMMUNITY COLLEGE GARDEN CENTER: SSCC Garden Center on Puget Ridge open again today; details here.

‘OKLAHOMA!’ BENEFIT: Tonight’s West Seattle High School performance of “Oklahoma!” at the WSHS Theater is a special benefit, with the musical at 8 pm. More info at

LIVE MUSIC: Singer-songwriter Jim Page plays at C & P Coffee Company (5612 California Avenue SW), 6 – 8 pm.

‘GREAT WATERFRONT’: Not in West Seattle, but potentially of interest, is tonight’s “Toward a Great Waterfront” public event, initial design directions for the downtown waterfront, Pier 66, 5 pm-8:30 pm (starts with food and music on the pier, presentation at 6:30 pm). If you plan to attend, please e-mail

West Seattle commute: Water Taxi ridership keeps rising

Thinking of taking the Water Taxi today, after what commenters say has been a steadily worsening Highway 99 commute post-lane reductions? Here’s the schedule. The county tells us that through the first three days of the week, ridership has been consistently higher than the previous week, particularly on the afternoon runs. We stopped by Seacrest for photos on Wednesday and counted 31 people disembarking around 4:30 pm. We’re expecting official numbers in a week-one wrapup on Monday.

Election 2011: Diana Toledo launches 2nd County Council campaign

With three months till the primary, and candidate forums and campaign kickoffs starting to intensify, we’re stepping up coverage of the 2011 election. Last night at the Admiral Theater, West Seattleite Diana Toledo launched her second campaign for King County Council District 8 (which includes West Seattle and White Center), with an all-ages party, friends and family chatting in the theater’s loft, while little ones brought by partygoers romped down on the main floor. Toledo says she chose the venue to support a local business that could use more patrons.

Among those at the party was Tim Fahey, one of the three other candidates that ran for the office last year. You’ll see him in our clip from the short speech Toledo gave last night:

Toledo is a former King County employee who says her experience inside county government will help her reform it (here’s her online bio). The candidate to whom Toledo lost in last year’s general election, now-King County Councilmember Joe McDermott, is the only other declared candidate so far; he has a kickoff party scheduled next week. The official filing period opens this Friday for candidates filing by mail. (Wondering why there’s another election so soon after the last one? That was for the remainder of the term that had been won by Dow Constantine before he moved up to King County Executive two years ago, so this time a full 4-year council term is up for grabs.)

West Seattle Crime Watch: Alleged car prowler thwarted, arrested

Just in case you’re wondering: K-9 is helping with a police search that is related to at least two complaints in the Fairmount Park/Fairmount Springs area. WSB contributor Katie Meyer heard the early scanner traffic and reports that two people were reportedly seen in at least one backyard, one possibly with a ladder; the 5400 block of 41st SW was mentioned. There has also been a report of someone suspicious seen east of the park. We’ll add more information when/if we get it.

1:47 AM UPDATE: We haven’t heard back from police yet, but we have it from a neighborhood source that one suspect was taken into custody, believed to be the man spotted going through a car.

2:07 AM UPDATE: Confirmation from Lt. Alan Williams at the Southwest Precinct: “At about 11:54, a citizen who lives in the 5400 block of 42nd SW [map] saw someone inside his (unlocked) car. The suspect ran when the victim yelled at him. The victim called 9-1-1. Several patrol units and one K9 unit responded. The dog and handler were able to locate and detain a possible suspect in the 5600 block of 41st SW. The victim identified the suspect as the person he had seen inside his car. The suspect, a 20-year-old man, was booked into jail for Car Prowling.”