Merrill Gardens-Admiral Heights to ‘stuff the bus’ for Nickelsville

(October photo of Nickelsville, by Kevin McClintic)
On a cold morning, with possible snow showers looming, people are still sleeping outdoors all over the city – including more than 100 in the West Seattle encampment that calls itself Nickelsville. Nichole, the Active Living Director at Merrill Gardens-Admiral Heights (WSB sponsor), says residents choose a community service project this time of year, and they’ve chosen to adopt Nickelsville, but they need YOUR help to really make it big. She is planning an event to gather donations – with collections starting immediately, and a “Stuff the Bus” day on December 3rd, 10 am-4 pm. She toured the encampment this week and has this list of needs so far:

Wool socks
Female hygiene supplies
Camp Stoves
Propane for Camp Stoves
Canned food

Before the actual “stuff the bus” event, you can still drop off items 7 days a week, 8 am-8 pm. Nichole also hopes to put up a giving tree, so that on December 3rd, you can pick up a tag and bring back a gift. She says, “My residents are 100% behind this and very excited to have a project where they can make an impact on the homeless community.” She’s still collecting information about other needs at the camp, and we’ll add it when available. Merrill Gardens-Admiral Heights is at 2326 California SW.

19 Replies to "Merrill Gardens-Admiral Heights to 'stuff the bus' for Nickelsville"

  • Aman November 18, 2011 (8:10 am)

    Happy Holidays Merrill Gardens Residents. Thanks for your good work!

  • Amanda November 18, 2011 (8:11 am)

    Well done!

  • Nichole November 18, 2011 (8:28 am)

    Admiral Heights residents thank you for posting this on the blog!
    They will be out in the general Admiral area this afternoon asking local business to help promote this event by putting a flyer in the window.
    Thanks you for helping them help Nickelsville!

    Remember if you can’t make it Dec. 3rd our front desk will be happy to accept donations before that date which we will load in the bus on stuff the bus day!

  • proudpugetridger November 18, 2011 (8:42 am)

    This is such an incredible example of how we’re slipping in American society.
    These folks at Merrill Gardens, who undoubtedly worked long and productive careers (including multiple “downturns of our economy”) to reach the milestone of self-sustained retirement, are volunteering to provide for the folks who refuse to put forth effort themselves.
    It will be interesting when today’s non-productive people reach retirement age…then what??
    Kudos to the incredible folks at Merrill Gardens, who reflect a generation of can-do people that simply roll their sleeves up work as needed, supporting themselves and others generously.
    The respect I have for “the Greatest Generation” is immeasurable.
    All of us younger folks could sure learn a lesson from those leaders ahead of ourselves!

  • Wendell November 18, 2011 (9:58 am)

    What, no male hygiene supplies?

    @proudpugetridger – They’ve already reached retirement age.

  • JanS November 18, 2011 (9:58 am)

    so you would just rather let them freeze/starve, etc.? That’s a wonderful attitude. Whether you want them in your “neighborhood” or not, the fact is, they are there, and there is an immediate need. I find your attitude reprehensible.

  • How do you know? November 18, 2011 (10:02 am)

    proudpugetridger – how is it exactly that you know the camp is “folks who refuse to put forth effort themselves”? I live right up the hill and see many walking to the bus stop for work and getting off the bus on their way home. For most of the people there it is a transitional phase. Have a heart!

  • JoB November 18, 2011 (10:03 am)


    with all due respect, could I suggest that you remember the reason for the season?
    even if you think that the people in Nickelsville are a bunch of bums who wouldn’t lift a teaspoon to help themselves, they are still human beings who spent a very cold night in a tent last night while you snuggled in your warm bed.
    they don’t deserve to die in that field simply because you think they are “non-productive” people.
    As you stated, we could indeed learn a lesson from the greatest generation…
    but the one I was thinking of was generosity.
    the greatest generation learned that lesson as kids.. they learned it from their parents and grandparents who struggled during the great depression
    many of whom wouldn’t have survived without the generosity of others.
    What makes you think today’s “non-productive” people are any different from yesterdays?
    Our generosity could well fuel the next great generation.
    while charity often comes with strings and qualifications for those who are deserving…
    generosity comes from the heart
    the people at Merril Gardens have plenty of heart
    And that is the reason for the season

  • CB November 18, 2011 (10:32 am)

    McGinnville please.

  • Teri Ensley November 18, 2011 (10:34 am)

    proudpugetridger: Your assumptions are not reality.

    Here are some accurate statements:
    Many of the people at Nickelsville have jobs.
    Many of the people at Nickelsville are unemployed & without a traditional living situation because of the economy or an illness.
    Many of the people have serious disabilities and during our ‘Great Recession’, with high unemployment rates, it is even harder for them to find work.
    Many people are able transition into more traditional housing.

    Here is the lesson I learned from the greatest generation…
    My parents, who were children during the Great Depression Era, taught me that we always have enough to help someone else. How? Through their actions. We helped people in our neighborhood that were going through difficult times; adopted a family every Christmas; took supplies to the food bank, etc. It wasn’t until I was in my 30’s that I realized our family of six was part of the ‘working poor’ class. My parents reached ‘Working Class’ by the time I was 17ish and Middle Class by the time I was 25. I honor my parents by modeling the behavior and caring that they modeled for me.

    Your continued negative, predictable comments remind me of a Christmas character…..hmmm. oh, that’s right, The Grinch! He made many, many assumptions that had nothing to do with reality. Lucky for him, he learned through experience that his assumptions were just that…and his heart grew…and he …well we know the rest of his story.

  • TammiWS November 18, 2011 (10:41 am)

    Seriously, proudpugetridger, there has been homelessness and less fortunate people in every generation and those who care step in to help when needed.

    If you yourself have learned the lessons from the leaders of the ‘greatest generation’ then by all means go down and volunteer some time. It might fill your cup a bit….

  • Ajax November 18, 2011 (10:44 am)

    I can only assume that “proudpugetridger” will spend the rest of the day taking delight in telling small children that there is no Santa Claus. (Freeloading little gits that they are.)

    After the enjoyment of that wears off, perhaps you should watch A Christmas Carol and How The Grinch Stole Christmas and see if there’s anyone you recognize.

  • KM November 18, 2011 (10:44 am)

    Heading down with my daughter to drop off some items and show her the value of helping those in need. How can we raise the next “Greatest Generation” if we teach our children to scorn those less fortunate? I’m sure the people in the camp never expected to end up there and would help others if their circumstances were different.

  • ad November 18, 2011 (11:44 am)

    I would like to purchase a gift for the kids living there (even though I’m broke broke). Where exactly is this place?

    • WSB November 18, 2011 (11:52 am)

      Official address is 7116 W. Marginal Way SW. It’s at the junction of West Marginal Way and Highland Park Way – a triangular site, with the main entrance from a parking lot on the south side, though there’s now also a walk-in entrance on the north side, near a bus stop – TR

  • CMT November 18, 2011 (2:16 pm)

    @proudpugetridger – so many assumptions, as pointed out by others. Plently of people in the “Greatest Generation” are now being cared for by the “sandwich generation” of adults taking care of their parents and their children, and that includes helping fund their parents’ retirement at places like Merrill Gardens. Many of those at Nickelsville don’t have functional families to help them when needed. Your blanket generalizations are depressing. I’d love to think that you are just a troll trying to provoke a response but unfortunately I have met people that think as you do.

  • MP November 18, 2011 (6:59 pm)

    I own a small business downtown. I’m going to put a shout out to my customers to see if I can get some donations. I saw a news clip recently on the kids of the camp. Breaks your heart to hear the kids talk about the embarrassment of their living situation and how cold it’s getting. These single parents with kids should be the focus of DESC housing project for Delridge…. Makes way more sense than housing drug addicts!
    I hope my customers will help out :)

  • miws November 18, 2011 (10:11 pm)

    Thanks, Merrill Gardens-Admiral Heights, and to those planning on helping “stuff the bus”!



  • nichole November 19, 2011 (8:27 am)


    Email me and I will be happy to get a flyer to you that you can hand out!

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