day : 01/12/2011 10 results

From the WSB Forums: ‘Beyond heartwarming’ generosity

Beyond what’s featured here on the WSB news page day in and day out, stories and opinions, rants and raves, requests and offers, are shared around the clock in the WSB Forums. We just read one that we thought you might like to read, in case you are not a frequent Forums visitor – a gift for a soldier, from a stranger, inside a local store. See it here.

West Seattle Christmas lights: Menashe Family display officially on

It’s been a work in progress for days (here’s our report from last Monday), and finishing touches were happening up till the last moment – but as of just before 6 pm, the Menashe Family‘s famous Christmas-light display in the 5600 block of Beach Drive SW is shining bright. As you’ll hear – or not hear! – in our video, there was no countdown, no fanfare, just the pulling of the switch – and on they went. Here’s a closer look at the lights in HD:

(Two years ago, a cable TV crew filmed the lighting for “Invasion of the Christmas Lights 2,” which premiered on TLC last year and will be rerun this Saturday.)

Traffic alert: Partial Alaskan Way Viaduct closure next week

December 1, 2011 6:28 pm
|    Comments Off on Traffic alert: Partial Alaskan Way Viaduct closure next week
 |   Alaskan Way Viaduct | West Seattle news

The weekly construction update from WSDOT mentions an Alaskan Way Viaduct closure coming up next week – Monday night (December 5th), 10 pm-5 am, all southbound lanes will be closed between the Battery Street Tunnel and the West Seattle Bridge. There are some ramp closures in SODO coming up, too; here’s the full list.

West Seattle holiday help: Schmitz Park kids’ benefit crafts

December 1, 2011 4:09 pm
|    Comments Off on West Seattle holiday help: Schmitz Park kids’ benefit crafts
 |   Holidays | How to help | West Seattle news | West Seattle schools

This Saturday, there are bazaars a-plenty around West Seattle (as listed here) – including Schmitz Park Elementary, where a parent shared news that some of the merchandise will help a local nonprofit:

Just wanted to let folks know that the Holiday Bazaar at Schmitz Park Elementary on 12/3 will include an opportunity to shop and give at the same time. The West Seattle Food Bank will be the recipient of proceeds from sales of hand made paper crafts from Ms. Grasel’s 1st grade class. The kids will be selling flowers and picture frames they constructed out of recycled paper, that can be used as gift toppers or ornaments. They will also be collecting food donations for the Food Bank. Of course there will lots of other lovely hand made crafts to purchase there as well.

From left are 1st graders Kian Hufford, Leeia Stroh, Sylvia Lamphere, and Kayley Thom. The bazaar/craft fair runs 10 am-3 pm Saturday (5000 SW Spokane).

West Seattle Produce now open at new location across the street

Lots more room inside West Seattle Produce‘s new home across Fauntleroy Way SW. We reported their planned move a month ago and dropped by this morning to see how things look.

Their storefront faces north, so you will only see it from the street when you are driving/riding/walking south (and manager Brian points out it’s a legal left turn – they checked), but you can’t miss the Christmas trees right now ($10/foot):

They’ve still got a few final touches for stocking and setting up, but their non-produce food and beverage stocks include European pastries, with bagels to be added this weekend:

Other merchandise includes teas, spices, seeds, and nuts. Brian told us they got major help from fellow Triangle business Alki Lumber to get everything moved across the street. That’s also where he says they got a great deal on the wood that’s providing a lot of homey, rustic atmosphere inside the new location – with the framework over the central produce island even including old bridge timbers:

And if you look closely at the front counter when you visit, you’ll notice mechanisms hinting at its past incarnation as part of a door – right over corrugated metal that’s been treated to look older than it really is. West Seattle Produce is open 8 am daily, till 7 every night except Sunday (6 pm) .. and if you’re still having trouble placing the location, it’s the old A-1/Hertz Rentals place, immediately south of the new Les Schwab Tires.

West Seattle holidays: Our Lady of Guadalupe tree-trimming

High-level tree-trimming this morning at the highest-elevation Christmas tree in the city! It’s at Our Lady of Guadalupe Church and School, 35th and Myrtle, right across the street from the highest point in the city (after which the nearby High Point neighborhood was named) – 512′ at Myrtle Reservoir Park. We spotted the tree-trimming crew in action while driving by a short time ago, so of course we had to pull over for a photo. OLG plans another festive tree-lighting celebration this year, as noted on the WSB West Seattle Holidays page – 7 pm Friday, December 9th, all welcome (caroling too!).

It’s one of three FOUR tree lightings this season – The Junction lights its tree at 5 pm this Saturday (December 3rd) in Junction Plaza Park, and Mars Hill Church is inviting the community to its (indoor) tree lighting at 7 pm December 7th. (Added: Just got word the White Center tree lighting at 16th/Roxbury is set for December 11th.)

Roxhill Park Playground: New castle, climbing dome, and – you?

For all the public meetings that participants have characterized as “the (host department/agency/officials) made up their mind before they came to talk to us,” last night’s final design meeting for the Roxhill Park Playground overhaul, like the first two, has worked the other way. The first two meetings yielded such strong sentiments about the current wooden “castle” structure at the park, which is being replaced because Seattle Parks says it’s at the end of its lifespan (that part is not open for debate), that project managers went to its designer to ask about a replacement.

It’s not a replica, and it’s not as big, but the main structure in the resulting proposal by Leathers and Associates won strong support last night for incorporation into the project. The photo above is from one of six layouts – mostly returnees from previous meetings – that Parks brought along. Another feature that was even more strongly favored – a climbing dome:

If you want to get a firsthand look at a similar dome, there’s one at Golden Gardens in Ballard, it was noted. Those in attendance last night just barely made it into the two-digit range – but two children were there, including 8-year-old Gabe, who voiced a vote for this castle alternative (in case the one at the top turns out to be too expensive):

(By the way, the tree stays, also by popular demand.) Speaking of cost, one key may be public involvement. Parks’ Kelly Davidson and Shwu-jen Hwang explained that Leathers and Associates prefers its creations to be “community-built” – as was the current Roxhill castle – but will provide a contractor if needed, adding about $25,000 to the cost. So if their structure makes it into the final design, there may be a campaign to round up 70-80 community volunteers to build it some weekend next summer – though Parks made it clear, that has to be a community-organized campaign. Another possible cost-saving measure: Incorporate “little kid” features to the side of the Leathers-built structure, instead of adding an extra structure off to the side, and reduce concrete features such as “seating walls.”

As for additional features beyond the play structure and dome, that depends on how the numbers crunch out, according to Parks – swings for sure, though. They are taking last night’s input and starting work to come up with a final design proposal – no more meetings are scheduled but you are welcome to send your thoughts (the sooner the better) to (And keep an eye on the project website.) If the schedule proceeds as planned, this would go to bid next spring and be built next summer (along with the neighboring skatespot, whose final design meeting was 2 weeks ago.)

Another shootdown for parks’ gun ban, but city still fighting

(Short-lived gun-ban sign photographed by Hillary at Lincoln Park in 2009)
Remember two years ago, when a man challenged the then-new gun ban at Seattle Parks facilities by trying to enter Southwest Community Center with his concealed weapon (WSB coverage here)? That was just one of the challenges to the ban. The court fight over it has continued all the while – and today, the city has announced that, while an appeals court ruled against the ban last month, it’s now taking the case to the state Supreme Court. From the office of City Attorney Pete Holmes:

Because an appeals court misread earlier holdings of the Washington Supreme Court, the City on Wednesday asked the state’s highest court to reverse a ruling that struck down Seattle’s ban on guns in areas of parks, community centers and other facilities where children are likely to be present.

Attorneys for Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe, which represents the City on a pro bono basis, told the Supreme Court — in a petition seeking review from Division 1 of the Washington Court of Appeals — that Seattle was seeking a second look not only on behalf of its residents but for all forms of local governments in the state that want authority over their own properties.

The news release continues:Read More

West Seattle Thursday: Lights, schools, shopping, giving…

Thanks to everybody who’s continuing to share great photos via the WSB Flickr group – that one shows Luna/Anchor Park after last night’s great sunset (other views on Flickr) and it’s by Doug Branch (see a larger version here). Meantime, the new month gets off to a busy start!

TRAFFIC ALERT FOR EVENING COMMUTE: As SDOT has warned, there’s a Seahawks game at 5:20 pm, which will affect downtown/SODO traffic. (P.S. Another reminder, the Water Taxi does NOT have late runs for sporting events in the winter season.)

MENASHE FAMILY CHRISTMAS LIGHTS: The famous lights of Beach Drive are scheduled to go on at 5 pm at te Menashe Family residence, 5600 block. (Here’s our preview.)

MORE WEST SEATTLE HOLIDAY EVENTS/INFO: Updated multiple times daily on the WSB Holidays page (got something to add? – thanks!)

MIDDLE SCHOOL INFO NIGHT: Someone in your family entering 5th, 6th or 7th grade next fall? You’re invited to tonight’s information night for Westside School (WSB sponsor), 6-7:30 pm, 7740 34th SW (details here).

SHOP LATE THURSDAYS: Shop Late Thursdays continue in The Junction through the holidays! Till 9 pm; participating merchants (listed here)

AND WHILE YOU’RE SHOPPING … WSB HOLIDAY SHOPPING GUIDE: If you haven’t checked this year’s edition yet – see it here; it includes seven new coupons for local businesses (in addition to the deals on this updated-year-round page).

HOLIDAY GIVING: As previewed here last night, Knows Perfume (4536 California SW) has launched a silent auction to benefit the West Seattle Food Bank – one of many giving opportunities highlighted here.

‘DESIGN REVIEW 101’: This informational session is sponsored by Delridge groups looking ahead to next Thursday’s Design Review meeting about the DESC 75-unit “supportive housing” proposal at 5444 Delridge, but anyone interested in the Design Review process is welcome, 6:30 pm at Youngstown Cultural Arts Center (4408 Delridge Way SW), more info here.

SANISLO ELEMENTARY PTA: Meets tonight at 6:30 pm in the Sanislo library (1812 SW Myrtle). From the announcement: “We especially encourage new incoming families to check out what Sanislo is about. This will be the last PTA meeting for the year.”

CHIEF SEALTH PTSA: Tonight’s also the Chief Sealth International High School PTSA meeting, 7 pm, Galleria (2600 SW Thistle; here’s the agenda).

West Seattle Traffic Watch: Foggy morning; other alerts

7:21 AM: Commute alerts so far this morning: It’s not on the 911 log (yet?) but we just got a call reporting a crash on northbound 99. And even if you’re not taking 99, be careful in the fog. It’s not foggy at WSB HQ near Lincoln Park, but the traffic cams show fog to the north.

7:34 AM: Russ’s description via Twitter from aboard a bus: “Viaduct is a disaster again this morning.” The cams don’t look as bad as they looked yesterday, though, at this point.

7:51 AM: Russ says things got better once they got on 99. Reminder for tonight’s commute home: Seahawks game at 5:20 pm.

8:42 AM: Mike just tweeted about a stalled car on the right side of the eastbound highrise West Seattle Bridge.