West Seattle, Washington
School may be out but holiday basketball tournaments continue. Tonight Seattle Lutheran High School‘s teams are both playing in the finals of a tournament in the Skagit County town of Mount Vernon – and the Saints have already taken the girls’ title, beating Mount Vernon Christian 40-37. Thanks to Seana for the score updates and the photo.
8:50 PM UPDATE: Also from Seana: The SLHS boys take second place in the tournament, losing 42-30 to Mt. Rainier Lutheran.
Another meeting just added to the schedule for the first week of the New Year:
Inspired by Occupy Seattle? Just curious?
Come to: A Public Meeting
6:00 – 7:30 PM Thursday, January 5
West Seattle Library, 2306 42nd Ave SW
Meet some Occupy Seattle participants. Bring your questions, concerns, ideas. Find out how to get involved!
Hosted by: West Seattle Neighbors for Peace & Justice
(5/10/11 photo by Gary Jones)
Continuing to go through the WSB archives as we rough out more year-in-review roundups, we realized that “Seen at Sea” coverage – even without the wildlife stories, which we’ve already recapped – contains some of 2011’s most memorable sights. Among them, of course, what you see in the top photo – the Sea-Based X-Band Radar, the missile-tracking floating dome which was at Vigor Shipyards on Harbor Island from May 10th (nighttime arrival coverage here) till August 20th (departure coverage here), during which time it was the subject of doubtlessly millions of photos, and almost as many questions.
(8/20/11 photo by Melanie Dixon)
By the way, SBX is on the move again right now – this story says it departed a Hawaii base on Wednesday for point(s) unknown.
Here’s some of what else made news in and on West Seattle waters this year:
SINKING AND RAISING OF ‘JUSTIN’
Beach Drive was media central for a few days in October after the rock-laden Justin sank. Nobody hurt, but the slick raised some concern – Colby Chester provided the view you see above – and raising the sunken vessel took quite an operation.
FIRST-EVER NORTHWEST PADDLING FESTIVAL
In June, a first-of-its-kind festival debuted in West Seattle, as Alki Kayak Tours/Mountain to Sound Outfitters led the way for the Northwest Paddling Festival at Jack Block Park, where a stretch of previously closed shoreline opened for the occasion.
MORE HUMAN-POWERED WAYFARING
In July, during the outrigger race “Da Grind,” Gatewood pilot/aerial photographer Long B. Nguyen shared that sight. Also in July:
David Hutchinson shared great shots from the Tribal Journeys visit to Alki.
NO, THAT WASN’T AN AIRCRAFT CARRIER
The Seafair Parade of Ships was particularly impressive this August, with the amphibious-assault vessel USS Bonhomme Richard part of the parade, and a hovercraft right behind it. Gary shared the view looking over the Alki Lighthouse.
WHY WE ALL LEARNED THE WORD ‘NOCTILUCA’
In June, many people spotted this phenomenon close up along local waterways, and worried about “red tide.” It was reddish, but that’s not what it was – it was a nontoxic microorganism bloom called “noctiluca.”
WEIRDNESS AT SEA – BEACH DRIVE’S BEACHED COW
Maybe the weirdest West Seattle story of the year – a dead cow washed up in front of multiple Beach Drive homes over the course of a few days in February. Police finally got involved and towed it to Don Armeni, where a rendering company picked it up. As far as we know, the cow’s origins remain a moo-stery.
Track “seen at sea” stories on WSB any time via this archive (newest-to-oldest). Meantime, more year-in-review coverage to come!
We have just added details from court documents to our White Center Now report on the first-degree-murder charge filed this afternoon against the suspect in Wednesday morning’s deadly shooting, 25-year-old Cu Van Truong. According to court documents, the dispute started over a piece of jewelry. The full story is here.
She’s one of the fastest women in the state – and she’s still in high school. West Seattle resident Maddie Meyers is one of five nominees for “Female Sports Star of the Year” when the Seattle Sports Commission announces its annual awards next month. She runs for The Northwest School and is a national recordholder as well as winning four consecutive state titles in cross-country. But in addition to rooting for Maddie, you can also vote for her – the SSC is asking for public votes online. Maddie’s mom Kathy Meyers says, “There have been few high schoolers nominated for this award, and Maddie is really honored by this.” You can vote for her by going here (note, they ask for an e-mail address up front, but right over the final “cast vote” button, you can click to uncheck the box that would put you on a newsletter list). There are three other voting categories – Male and Professional Sports Stars of the Year and Sports Story of the Year. The winners will be announced at Benaroya Hall downtown on January 25th.
(Photo by Robin Lindsey)
Our roundup of 2011’s top West Seattle wildlife news included the record year reported by Seal Sitters – more than 50 seal pups on area beaches. Seal Sitters‘ first responder Robin Lindsey has a sad update today about one that they had been watching recently, and what they discovered about his death:
At 9 pm Christmas Eve, the hotline received a report of a pup sleeping on the beach. Instead, it was a dead pup who was identified as our little seal nicknamed Frosty. Having entertained quite a number of onlookers on Saturday, Frosty returned to the sound around 6 pm and we fully expected to see him the following morning. He had been alert without any notable indication of health concerns. We were shocked and saddened to find him dead that night.
The necropsy revealed a parasitic infestation in his lungs and trachea complicated with pneumonia and bacterial infection – a common and often deadly combination that weaned pups face. Except for one coughing spell over the course of three days, Frosty did not give any reason to believe he was in such compromised health. There is a more in-depth blog post on blubberblog about the findings, as well as a discussion of why these “weaners” are so at risk. With only a 50% survival rate the first year, they desperately need safe haven on shore. The work that the marine mammal stranding network does is often challenging – with much heartbreak that is, thankfully, counterbalanced with much reward – as we help this newest generation of pups get the best chance they can, not only to survive, but to thrive under our community’s protective watch.
There is something you can do about the runoff problem mentioned in Robin’s full update – Sustainable West Seattle’s “Tox-Ick” website has some simple advice, for starters.
(Photo by Kevin McClintic: At right, John Burmaz with longtime client John Jardine)
The New Year will bring a big change for a West Seattle barber who’s heading out of the business after almost half a century. Today is the second-to-last day of barbering for John Burmaz, whose “significant other” Jeannette Eshom shares this announcement:
END OF AN ERA! John Burmaz of the Alki Style and Barber Shop at 5040 California Avenue SW (across from the Rite Aid drugstore) is retiring after 47 years of barbering in West Seattle. His last day of work is December 31, 2011.
John started barbering at George’s Barber Shop, across from the Admiral Theater, on August 25, 1964. One year later, George sold the barber shop and John worked for the new owners, Don Jahnke and Martin Picinich, for four years. On the 18th of March 1969, John bought a barber shop from Arthur Buffington, a retiring barber, on Alki Beach. He barbered in that location until the 12th of December 1989, when the building was sold to Pegasus Pizza. He relocated to his current location, barbering another 22 years.
John wishes to thank his customers, past and present, for all their support through the years. He will miss interacting with his customers. At 70 years of age, he plans to enjoy winters in Arizona and summers in Seattle, as well as traveling and enjoying visits with his children and grandchildren.
Customers won’t have to look far for another barber, as the Classic Barber Shop is taking over John’s shop on January 1, 2012.
Might be a hard act to follow; Kevin McClintic, who took the photo you see above while visiting John for one last haircut on Thursday, said the longtime barber told him that when things get busy, he can do five haircuts an hour!
Not much on our calendars, as another holiday weekend approaches. A few things:
ANOTHER OVERNIGHT BRIDGE CLOSURE: The Fauntleroy Expressway work continues tonight – here are the details from SDOT.
BARTON STREET P-PATCH WORK PARTY: Through the summer and into the fall, volunteers have kept working to develop West Seattle’s newest P-Patch (34th/Barton), and – “if the weather cooperates” – they’ll be out again at noon today.
‘TINY BUBBLES’ TASTING AND PET-DONATION DRIVE: At Bin 41 in The Junction, 4-6 pm. From the announcement: “Here’s your chance to sample and select the perfect sparkling wine to pop open as the clock strikes midnight for welcoming in 2012! We’ll be pouring everything from Champagne, Cava, Prosecco, Cremant d’Alsace to sparkling rose. Our domestic sparkling wine this year will be from Iron Horse in California.” The Bin also says it’s one last chance to donate to their donation drive for the Old Dog Haven – bring a donation (here’s the wish list) and they’ll waive the fee for tonight’s tasting.
LIVE MUSIC: 2 bands at Skylark Café and Club, 9 pm.
A team of teens and adults from Hope Lutheran has something to look forward to in the new year – a trip to help improve the health and safety of people in the mountains of Jamaica. But first, as Hope’s student ministry director Abaigh Vickers writes, they’re hoping to get you involved too, through community partnership:
This coming July, six high school students, and four adults (including myself) are leaving the cozy little town of West Seattle to take on a much yuckier challenge. Digging outhouses. But, that’s not even the kicker — we’re digging outhouses in Catadupa, Jamaica. A place with no electricity or running water. Our shower situation, one might wonder? A natural spring. It’s going to be gross, tiring, hard work — but definitely worth it.
As one might imagine, this trip is expensive, so we’re looking for local businesses and/or residents to help out. The biggest trip this church has ever done, previously, was to Mexico (which was great) but this is huge, comparatively. I’m excited, the students are excited and I’m hoping the other chaperones are as well! It’ll be an excellent experience for everyone. We will get to see how the poorest of the poor live. I’m proud of these kids for giving up basically six months of their lives to commit to bettering the life of someone more than 3,000 miles away.
The trip isn’t until July, but we’re starting the fundraising (epic) journey now. I’m easily contacted though this e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org) and any contributions people make are tax deductible, of course.