day : 09/04/2012 9 results

West Seattle schools: Seahawk surprise at Arbor Heights

With the pro-football preseason is four-plus months away, there’s plenty of time for players to set their sights on a different playing field – local schools. Seattle Seahawks quarterback Josh Portis made a surprise appearance today at Arbor Heights Elementary School (whose students are the “Junior Seahawks”). His message: Stay in school. Not that dropping out is a big problem at the elementary level, but it’s never too soon to start making sure the message sinks in – encouraging better attendance has been a big districtwide campaign this school year. (Thanks to the Arbor Heights parent volunteer who shared the photo of the quarterback and Ms. Wilson, the first-grade teacher who led today’s assembly.)

West Seattle scene: New 60th/61st/Spokane stairs open

Thanks to Danny McMillin for sharing that photo from the South Alki area, where SDOT‘s two-month project to extend the 61st/Spokane stairway up to 60th is complete. He says a sign informed users it was open as of last Friday.

New Goodwill donation station opens in West Seattle

If you haven’t already spotted the new Goodwill donation station in West Seattle – it’s been there at least a week – the nonprofit organization is now ready to tell the world about it. 4722 Fauntleroy Way SW is the address, on the south side of West Seattle Produce, between SW Alaska and SW Edmunds. Goodwill spokesperson Katherine Boury shared the news, and the photo (that’s the type of truck you’ll see set up there every day). The collection site is open 9 am-6 pm every day of the year (except Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Easter) and, as noted on its official web page, will even take electronics, as long as they’re not too big – no TVs or computer monitors larger than 19 inches. (West Seattle also has a donation-dropoff site for Northwest Center, 44th and Edmunds in The junction, 9 am-5 pm on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays.)

Followup: Fly-by marriage proposal on Alki Beach

(Photos copyright Timothy S. Lusk)
If you closely watched Laura James‘ “Sunny Saturday on Alki” video clip atop today’s WSB “West Seattle Monday” preview – without blinking – you probably glimpsed a short shot toward the end, with people rolling up a banner. We asked Laura about it when we previewed her clip, and she said she just happened to catch the tail end of a fly-by proposal – with the proposee in a helicopter overhead. She, and we, agreed we wished we’d heard about it in advance; what a tale to tell.

Then, this afternoon, the WSB inbox brought a note from the proposer, Jason Hawkes. He had e-mailed to ask if we had any more visuals (even though he had a professional photographer documenting the excitement on the ground – this story has three of those photos). We managed to coax some details out of him so we could share the story with you.

Jason explained, “Last Saturday, around 6:30 PM, I proposed to my girlfriend (Robin Pritchett) via Alki and a helicopter. Family and friends were on Alki Beach holding a 12-foot banner with the words ‘Robin, will you marry me?’ Meanwhile, Robin and I were in a helicopter that I chartered and had the pilot fly right over Alki Beach so she’d see the banner.”

He says they are Alki residents, too, in a condo near the Lighthouse. Jason says, “I grew up in Kent, but always came to Alki for barbecues and get-togethers. During that time, I knew that when I graduated from WSU, I’d move to Alki. Sure enough, 4 months after graduating, I bought a condo on Alki Ave.” That was three years ago. He and Robin have been together about a year, though they’ve known each other since their freshman year in Pullman.

So, we asked, where did the helicopter idea come from? “I wanted my proposal to be something memorable, but also meaningful. Our first kiss was at Alki (Alki Beach), our first date was at Alki (Cactus), we fell in love at Alki (everywhere), and we live on Alki (next to the Lighthouse), so proposing hundreds of feet above Alki sounded like a pretty cool idea.”

Oh, and of course, Robin said “yes.” They’re looking at a wedding date in July of next year.

West Seattle shores: Low tide, lots of brant, more whale-watching

Another orca-sighting alert (via Elissa, on the WSB Facebook wall) sent us down to Beach Drive to take a look – but this was the only black-and-white-marked wildlife group we spotted – the beautiful brant who come here to eat eelgrass. (Here’s what Alki resident Guy Smith wrote about them for WSB in fall 2009. Note – brant are easily spooked, so if you see them, shhh!) The whale tips came from multiple sources; though we never saw them, that’s par for our course, but others including Jeff Hogan from Killer Whale Tales, plus two city Park Rangers, had better luck. And Orca Network‘s Facebook page says two pods may be in the Sound today. Meantime, the lowest tide of the month (-2.3 feet) is bottoming out right about now; if you have the chance to tidewalk tomorrow, it’ll be almost this low (-2.1 feet) at 2:23 pm – here’s the chart.

Last call for West Seattle HS Alumni Association scholarships!

If you are, or know, a graduating West Seattle High School senior, time has almost run out to apply for a West Seattle HS Alumni Association scholarship, says 1966 class rep Tom Friberg, sending out one last call for applications:

One of the activities of the Alumni Association is the awarding of scholarships to graduating Seniors. This year 14 scholarships are available, ranging from $500 to $5,000. The request for applications has been out since December 2011 and the deadline is nearing. All applications must be postmarked by April 13th. … For last-minute entry forms, contact the school directly at (206) 252-8800.

And if you have one that hasn’t been postal-mailed in yet – West Seattle High School Alumni Association, (updated address) 4742 42nd Ave. SW, #215, Seattle 98116.

West Seattle Crime Watch: Car prowl, interrupted

Amie e-mailed this morning not only to report that her car was broken into, but to share what she saw, in hopes it will lead to an arrest:

My car was broken into this morning at the Westcrest offleash dog park. I witnessed one of the suspects running away from my car, getting into the getaway car and driving away. I was walking up the lower hill with two friends and our dogs when I witnessed a suspicious-looking guy jogging away from my car. I immediately went to my car and saw that the window had been smashed. I definitely interrupted the burglary in process. The only things that were takes were an FM iPhone adapter and car charger.

My call to 911 was at 6:20 am, which was about 3-4 minutes after I witnessed him running from my car. The suspect is caucasian, early to mid 20s, tall (6′-ish) with sandy-blonde hair and a thin build. I’m less sure of what he was wearing but think it was jeans and a dark-colored sweatshirt.

There was a second person driving the car, but I did not see them at all. A woman at the dog park said she saw the car and occupants when she arrived at the park and that they were both caucasian males. The car is an older model red Japanese model (Honda Civic/Accord or Toyota Tercel) that has a black or gray-primed quarter panel over the driver’s side wheel. The SPD took prints and provided an incident # of 12-107322. If you see a car matching this description, please reports its location to the police immediately.

West Seattle Monday: Road work; 2 neighborhood meetings

(Thanks to Laura James for chronicling what was up – with people as well as water/wildlife – on Alki this past Saturday!)
Welcome to a new week! From the WSB West Seattle Events calendar:

ROAD WORK: Tonight, “only” one major closure – the eastbound Spokane Street Viaduct, 10 pm-5 am. This means you won’t be able to get to I-5 from the West Seattle Bridge during those hours; there are a few other ramp/surface changes too. Here’s our list, as it stands, of closures announced for this week, both city (WS Bridge) and state (99/Viaduct) – we will update it if anything else is added.

WATER TAXI REMINDER: If you haven’t seen the story from earlier this morning – starting today, the West Seattle Water Taxi is now on its all-day, every-day spring/summer schedule. That means the 773/775 free shuttles’ schedules have changed for the season, too.

EARTHQUAKE-HAZARDS REPORT: During this morning’s City Council “briefing” meeting – the first of two full-council meetings held most Mondays – federal experts will talk with councilmembers about a new report on local quake risks. We previewed it here last Thursday, when the agenda and presentation slides were made public. The meeting starts at 9:30 am and will be live on Seattle Channel (cable 21 as well as online); this briefing is expected to start around 10:15 am.

(added) WEST SEATTLE COOKING CLUB: Today’s ingredient is greens! Bring something cooked with ’em. 3 pm, Beveridge Place Pub. (More info at

NORTH DELRIDGE NEIGHBORHOOD COUNCIL: 6:30 pm, Delridge Library (Delridge/Brandon) – our calendar listing will connect you with agenda info.

(added, spotted via Twitter) ROXHILL ELEMENTARY PTA: 6:30 pm, school library. (30th/Roxbury)

PIGEON POINT NEIGHBORHOOD COUNCIL: 7 pm, Pathfinder K-8 cafeteria (1901 SW Genesee) – and check out the neighborhood’s remodeled website!

(added) ‘FLAT EARTH SOCIETY’ GUEST DJ @ WEST 5: 9 pm tonight, per West 5‘s Dave Montoure: “DJ BackBackon (the irrepressible Matt Lukin, alumnus of Mudhoney, Melvins).”

West Seattle Water Taxi’s all-day/every-day season starts today

Spring is finally here, so far as the West Seattle Water Taxi is concerned – its spring/summer schedule is now in effect. No more service gaps between morning and evening commute, no more Water Taxi-less weekends, while this schedule is in effect. See it here (and remember that the shuttle schedules are changing to match the boat schedules too). If the expanded Water Taxi brings you back on board for the first time, remember some things are different in the Seacrest area – Alki Crab and Fish moved out a month ago, and the suddenly complicated Marination situation is being worked out, but Alki Kayak Tours is open for the season, and brand-new Alki Juice and Java is open across the street. New for the Water Taxi itself – the county Ferry District has a new administrator, Christine Nelson.