West Seattle, Washington
On the brink of boating season, the West Seattle Yacht Club threw an open-house party at the Alki Masonic Lodge tonight for members and friends old and new. From left, WSYC officers: Purser Jodi Thomas, Yeoman Marie Gonzales, Commodore Tammie Legg, Vice Commodore Mary Ann Lobdell, Rear Commodore Julie Ethier. West Seattle Yacht Club invites all boaters and boating enthusiasts to join us at the annual WSYC Open House. In a note to WSB earlier in the week, VC Mary Ann had written, “There is no boat too small nor too big, or lack of for that matter. We are a social club that revolves around friendships and boating. There are monthly General Meetings held at the Alki Masonic Temple in the non-summer months. We promote at least 10 boat outings each year, most of which are accessible by car and RV.” As if to underscore that, on our way out we were stopped by a couple members who in the course of conversation insisted, “You don’t have to have a boat” – you can be a “social member.” Whether you have a boat or not, find out more about WSYC here; the club just celebrated its 49th birthday.
Later tonight, we’ll have a followup on the city’s Spokane Street Viaduct work, two days after the big “traffic shift.” In the meantime, the state just sent word of ITS plans for Highway 99/Alaskan Way Viaduct next week: Southbound between the Battery Street Tunnel and the West Seattle Bridge, overnight closures Monday night through Thursday night, 10 pm-5 am each night, “to reinforce both decks between South Washington and Columbia streets in Pioneer Square … in preparation for tunnel boring beneath this two-block section of the structure in late 2013.”
Another West Seattle totem pole is headed off for refurbishment work, done by the same experts who helped get the Rotary Viewpoint Park totem in shape. WSB was at the Log House Museum this afternoon as the crew from Artech, with help from Alki Lumber, picked up the pole that’s been unceremoniously lying on the ground behind the museum for a while. As our video clip above shows, it was a painstaking process to get the pole onto the truck in just the right spot:
It will take about a month to get the pole dried out and treated so that it’s ready for touchups. Once it’s ready to return, it will be placed upright on the west side of the museum, according to director Sarah Frederick:
This is the totem pole that used to be at the Admiral Way Viewpoint, as explained in our story last December (which also includes a photo of how it looked when it stood there; more history here). Grant money will take care of most of the refurbishment costs.
(Photo by WSB co-publisher Patrick Sand)
Arbor Heights Elementary School teacher Mark Ahlness started the Earth Day Groceries Project in 1994, and it’s still going strong – with Ahlness and his students bringing this year’s delivery of specially decorated bags to Roxbury Safeway manager Sai Cho (upper left of our photo) this afternoon. The 350-plus bags – bearing art and messages about Earth Day – will be distributed to Safeway shoppers. (Though April 22nd is still more than a week away, but this is the last day of school before a week of spring break, and that’s why this was delivery day.)
3:04 PM: And this afternoon’s other sentencing at the King County Courthouse – 9 years in prison for Duane Starkenburg, who admitted to sexually motivated attacks on joggers, and to molesting a child years earlier. He pleaded guilty last month; court documents indicate he was suspected in “nearly 10” other attacks, though charges were only filed in three.
3:34 PM UPDATE: At this afternoon’s hearing, WSB contributor Katie Meyer reports, no one spoke – either on behalf of the victims, or on behalf of Starkenburg. He was ordered to get treatment for sexual deviancy when his sentence is over, and he has been ordered to stay away from Lincoln Park for a decade. Our photo of him – those following the case will note, he no longer has a shaved head – has been added to this story. (added) That shot was in the hallway; in the courtroom, he tried to hide his face from the cameras:
When Judge Sharon Armstrong asked the defendant if he had anything to say, Starkenburg said simply “No, your honor.” The judge said that the “exceptional” sentence – including the order for him to serve the sentences on the different charges consecutively, not concurrently – “… promotes justice by assuring a sanction that is commensurate with the defendant’s conduct, and in protecting the public from the defendant’s conduct.”
We are at the King County Courthouse for two sentencings this afternoon. The first one has just been announced, in last year’s White Center murder of Sweetheart Failautusi: King County Superior Court Judge Mary Yu sentenced Anthony Haroldlee Smith to 15 years, 4 months, as recommended after he agreed to plead guilty. More on partner site White Center Now (including video of the hearing to be added; the clip above is a short placeholder in which you see Smith being taken past the victim’s friends/family in the courtroom right after the sentencing).
As of this morning, less than three weeks after announcing her move, Sam Crowley has reopened her flower shop Fleurt (WSB sponsor) in its bigger new location, 4536 California SW (the former storefront of Knows Perfume). Right after she threw open the doors at 10:30 am, we stopped by for a look inside. She’s open till 5:30 pm today, if you want to take a peek; Sam also invites you to an open house one week from tomorrow, April 21st, “We are planning to have an open house Saturday April 21st – “in celebration of our 2-year anniversary, Earth Day, and new location.”
“West Seattle Trader Joe’s Day 1” isn’t the only opening of note today: It’s also the first day for the Seattle Public Schools student art show at Seattle Art Museum downtown, and West Seattle High School shares the news that 20 pieces of art created by their students is part of the display. Teacher Michelle Sloan shared two of the photos you’ll see in the show – J.P. Patches, by Brandon Gilbert, and this one, by Dasha Medvedeva:
Michelle says the student exhibit is in the SAM lobby, which is open to the public without an admission fee, so it won’t cost you to go admire the students’ work, on display through May 27th. Any other local students involved, let us know! (And for teenagers themselves, tonight is Teen Night Out at SAM – free admission for students.)
The long-awaited West Seattle Trader Joe’s at 4545 Fauntleroy Way SW opens at 8 am. Mark says he got there at 4:30 am to be the first person in line. As of about quarter till 7, when we photographed him in the golden glow of the rising sun, Mark was the only person in line. He tells us first thing he’s buying is a case of the famous TJ’s wine, known by its nickname “Two-Buck Chuck.” More coverage to come – we’ll be adding to this story through the day.
7:59 AM: By the time the doors were about to open, Mark had been joined by about two dozen others:
8:12 AM: Our crew tells us the store actually opened a few minutes early. Here’s the ceremonial lei-cutting:
So, no traffic jam at this hour. We’ll check back later.
10:14 AM UPDATE: Thanks for sharing first-hand reports in the comment section! We also got a mural photo, shared via Twitter by Jose:
— Jose Mandojana (@mandojana) April 13, 2012
11:07 AM UPDATE: Three hours into Day 1, we drove back by to check traffic/parking. In a word: Busy. Here’s the view looking south down 39th SW – just west of the store (and on the left of our photo, you’ll see the entrance/exit to TJ’s roof parking) – this was taken before 11 am, so West Seattle Bowl wasn’t even open yet:
4:53 PM UPDATE: Drove by within the past hour. Still busy. Remember that if it looks like there’s no parking in the lot that faces Fauntleroy, turn right at “The Hole” and try the upstairs parking, entrance on the right (east) side of 39th SW.
11:41 PM NOTE: In the final hours of the store’s first day, business was really booming. We walked through around 7:30 and noticed long checkout lines; after we tweeted a mention of that, @juyeda – also in the store – tweeted this photo. And we forgot to mention one thing – this store has just officially applied for its license to sell liquor when privatization takes full effect June 1st.
They might be legit, they might not. Two of your West Seattle neighbors wanted to share door-to-door alerts from encounters last night, just in case:Read More
BRIDGE REMINDER: Thanks to pilot/photographer Long B. Nguyen for the view of the West Seattle Bridge during Day 1 of the traffic switchover – today is Day 2, with all 4 lanes of Spokane Street Viaduct traffic (2 east, 2 west) squeezed onto the new north side of the structure (right side of the photo). We’ll be talking with SDOT around noontime today to see what they have to say after a day and a half of commutes in this configuration. Also this morning:
WEST SEATTLE TRADER JOE’S OPENS: The years of rumors, dashed hopes, endless comment discussions, and finally, remodeling at 4545 Fauntleroy Way SW are over and as the banner behind Timothy and friends (thanks for sending the photo!) says, the store opens at 8 am today. (Trivia point: The original developers of “The Hole” to its west were at one point going to develop this site too, as a mixed-use project; we covered the announcement in May 2008. They did not buy it, though, just had an option, and it expired when everything fell apart.) P.S. As of 7 am, there is one person in line (photo coming up in separate story).
Meantime, TJ’s isn’t the only opening today:
Fleurt (WSB sponsor) will open in its new, bigger Junction location, not far from its old one, at 10:30 this morning (here’s our original report), 4536 California SW. We’ll take a look inside once it’s open!
GOOD LUCK IN THE GLOBAL READING CHALLENGE FINALS! Today’s the day that the team George’s Magicians Treasures from Alki Elementary, one of the two co-winners in the citywide finals (WSB coverage here), goes downtown for the finals-via-video against Canadian students, 10 am at Seattle Public Schools HQ in SODO.
WEST SEATTLE LIONS’ PLANT SALE: Today and tomorrow, the West Seattle Lions’ Club has its annual plant sale at the Senior Center of WS (California/Oregon in The Junction); the first session is 5-8 pm tonight.
More on the WSB West Seattle Events calendar!
Thanks to Cheryl for sharing the news about this, before Seattle Public Schools families head into spring break: Roxhill Elementary will host a community meeting on May 3rd about the district BEX IV levy draft proposal to close Roxhill and “merge” it into Arbor Heights Elementary. Since the proposal’s surprise emergence two weeks ago, there already has been a community meeting at AH, with Roxhill reps in attendance (WSB coverage here) and one district-led West Seattle meeting about the levy (WSB coverage here). The Roxhill meeting is set for 6:30-8 pm May 3rd; the school is at 30th/Roxbury.
From the family of L. Nadine Heinz-Brongil:
With heavy hearts, we announce the passing of a beloved wife, mother, daughter, and friend.
Nadine died unexpectedly on Friday, April 6th, 2012 at her home in West Seattle. She left her family and friends at the young age of 47.
Nadine was born in Spokane, Washington, but moved to Bothell, Washington, a short time later. At age 26, she married and would have been married 21 years this July.
She leaves behind her husband Bob Brongil, daughters Brita Brongil and McKenzie Walsh (Chris Walsh), parents Elke and Edward Heinz, brother David Heinz (Lisa Heinz), and several other loving friends and family.
Funeral Mass will be celebrated Sunday, April 15th at 2 pm at Our Lady of Guadalupe. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Seattle Humane Society.
(WSB publishes obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available/desired, to email@example.com)
Road game, so we weren’t there, but for those tracking the win streak of Chief Sealth International High School‘s boys-varsity soccer team, they won again Thursday afternoon, 2-1 over Franklin. That brings their record to 10-0-1. Seattle Public Schools are on spring break next week, so no games; they play again Tuesday, April 24th, hosting Ingraham at Southwest Athletic Complex.