day : 18/04/2012 14 results

Local travel writers’ global charity gets boost from Expedia

Story and photos by Keri DeTore
West Seattle Blog contributor

Did you notice the lights and cameras set up at Cupcake Royale in The Junction on Monday?

That was a crew from Bellevue-based Expedia, interviewing local travel writers who have applied their storytelling and outreach skills to fundraising for international projects.

West Seattleites Beth Whitman (photo left) and Pam Mandel (photo right), along with Debbie Dubrow (center, from Mount Baker), are longtime travelers and writers who publish blog-format sites where they share their experiences, and their tips and tricks for smarter, easier travel. Along with Michelle Duffy (not pictured), they found each other through their writing, and began meeting regularly at Cupcake Royale to share stories and support.

At one point, they wondered, “What MORE can we do?” They wanted a way to bring together the travel-blog community, and unite it around a cause. After doing some research, realizing that others in that community wanted “something to latch onto,” and finding other groups with strong fundraising models, the four women created Passports with Purpose.

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West Seattle Crime Watch: Neighbors’ open call for partnership

April 18, 2012 10:29 pm
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 |   Crime | Safety | West Seattle news

With the Sunday night attack/robbery – and then last night’s chase/crashBecky says her neighborhood wants to reach out to join forces with those nearby:

The Block Watch community of 18th Ave SW & Trenton … met to discuss the events of (Monday) night concerning a young woman being assaulted in our alley. This act of random violence is not only scary, but completely inconsistent with who we are as a community. We are families, friends and neighbors who want the simple peace of feeling safe on our street and in our homes. We want to be able to feel safe with our children playing outside. And we want to be empowered, as a community, to address this horrible event that has shattered that perspective for us.

We realize that the best way to heal the neighborhood impacted by such random violence is to work with our sister neighborhood Block Watches (or neighbors- we are not exclusive!). We have discussed some idea of how we can watch out for each other and be more vigilant. We tossed around ideas like offering to walk our neighbors home if they work the late shift in pairs. And we want to coordinate with the other neighborhoods and get some more ideas on how to prevent this from happening in our community. So if folks are interested in working with the Block Watch of 18th Ave SW & Trenton, please contact the SW Precinct for details on getting a hold of us. We have been coordinating with the Community Police Officer and appreciate the efforts of SPD to address this incident.

Along with publishing her message here, we also suggested that Becky reach out to the West Seattle Blockwatch Captains’ Network (which isn’t just for BW captains), which has been working to connect neighborhoods for crime prevention and safety. Their next meeting, by the way – open to all – is next Tuesday, April 24th, 6:30 pm at the Southwest Precinct, with “crime prevention through environmental design” the scheduled topic – helpful hints that you can use to reduce the chances your home will be targeted.

West Seattle wildlife: Bird with a view

April 18, 2012 10:17 pm
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle weather | Wildlife

No one can resist the downtown-skyline view from West Seattle – not even the noble and ever-busy crow. Thanks to Darren Pilon for sharing the photo. P.S. While rain is on its way back, the forecast includes some weekend sun.

The ‘other’ RapidRide-related work: SW Alaska rechannelization in May

The next major “rechannelization” in West Seattle is now just weeks away, according to SDOT. The timetable for SW Alaska changes in The Junction and Triangle came up during a briefing at tonight’s Morgan Community Association meeting, mostly about RapidRide-related road work (though RapidRide is a county Metro Transit project, the road/sidewalk/signal changes are being done in association with SDOT). SDOT’s RapidRide project manager Mike Ward told MoCA that the work is now expected to be done next month – no date firmed up yet, but they’ll plan on making it happen over a period of about four days – starting on a Monday, wrapping up Thursday. As reported here last year, the rechannelization will include these changes:

· Install an eastbound business access and transit Lane (BAT) between 42nd Avenue SW and 40th Avenue SW

· Install a westbound BAT lane between Fauntleroy Way and 42nd Avenue SW

· Remove parking on the north side of SW Alaska Street between California Avenue SW and 42nd Avenue SW and north side of SW Alaska Street between 41st Avenue SW and Fauntleroy; remove parking on south side of SW Alaska Street between 42nd and Fauntleroy

· Install a westbound left turn pocket at California Avenue and SW Alaska Street

· Install an eastbound left turn pocket at 42nd Avenue SW and SW Alaska Street

· Install a westbound bicycle lane between Fauntleroy Way and approximately 30 feet west of 41st Avenue SW

We’ll have the rest of the RapidRide discussion in our full report on the MoCA meeting, but wanted to get this news out sooner. For the city’s renderings of how the rechannelization will work, scroll down this page.

Seattle Green Home Tour this weekend – with five area stops

Just a few days till this weekend’s free, self-guided Seattle Green Home Tour (with WSB among the co-sponsors), which – as the clickable map above shows you – has four West Seattle stops this year, plus one not too far away (and 25 stops in all, around the metro area). Read on for more details on the West Seattle sites:Read More

West Seattle Thriftway: Welcoming a new WSB sponsor

This afternoon, we welcome a new WSB sponsor – locally owned West Seattle Thriftway! Here’s their message to you:

You know their faces and you know their names, and it’s most likely because the staff members at West Seattle Thriftway have been working there for more than a decade, if not two. “A passion for what they do” doesn’t even begin to describe how they feel about their workplace. A building is merely an empty shell until you give it a soul – and something we believe strongly in is that it’s the people who work somewhere that make a place special.

At West Seattle Thriftway, the goals are simple and straightforward: To offer exceptional quality and diversity of products, even more exceptional customer service, and to create strong ties to the community through non-profit support, events, and fundraising. “In a way, we feel like we have grown up with our community and have been woven into the fabric of what makes West Seattle so special, which is strong community connections.”

More importantly, in a world of “big box” stores, we feel extremely proud to be considered one of the little guys. Aside from being totally awesome, being an independent grocer and being locally owned and operated gives us the power to be able to bend over backward for our customers. Please come visit us April 20th – 22nd (4201 SW Morgan, at California/Fauntleroy) for a community appreciation event that includes a free grilled sausage lunch as a thank you for all of your support!

We thank West Seattle Thriftway for sponsoring independent, community-collaborative neighborhood news via WSB; find our current sponsor team listed in directory format here, and find info on joining the team by going here.

West Seattle businesses: ‘Cash mob’ planned for Curious Kidstuff

Our area’s second planned “Cash Mob” is set for this Saturday – though it’ll actually be a week BEFORE the first one announced for our area. Confusing? Here’s the deal: The latest announcement is for 4 pm this Saturday, April 21st, during The Junction’s “Tax-Free Day” multi-merchant all-day sale – a “cash mob” (show up and spend!) at Curious Kidstuff. The one that was announced earlier (first reported here two weeks ago), April 28th at Village Green Perennial Nursery, is still on, too. A “cash mob” is meant to be a gathering of people, “flash mob” style (though usually well-publicized), to show up at a specific business and spend at least $20. (We hope you will “cash mob” ALL your favorite local independent businesses as often as you can, though!)

West Seattle Community Garage Sale Day countdown: 1 week to register

April 18, 2012 2:46 pm
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 |   Community Garage Sale Day | West Seattle news

120 sales now on the map for West Seattle Community Garage Sale Day 2012 – the six hours (9 am-3 pm the second Saturday of May, garagesaledaysmalllog5.jpgwhich this year is May 12th) when our peninsula turns into Garage/Yard/Rummage Sale Paradise. We are now exactly a week away from the official registration deadline – 11:59 pm next Wednesday (April 25th) – that cutoff gives us just enough time to make the maps (which will be ready a week before WSCGSD) and launch the final round of promotion with something resembling an accurate total.

**Registration form’s here**

And we have two more notes:
**NOT ENOUGH ROOM OR STUFF FOR YOUR OWN SALE? Hotwire Online Coffeehouse and C & P Coffee Company (both WSB sponsors) are once again offering courtyard/yard space for small individual sellers. Inquire at either coffee shop (4410 California is Hotwire, 5612 California is C&P) or by e-mail – or

**DON’T WANT TO SELL, BUT HAVE STUFF SOMEONE MIGHT WANT TO SELL? The Rainbow Girls will be on the map again this year:

Cleaning out your closets? West Seattle #18 International Order of the Rainbow for Girls is seeking donations for our third annual garage sale Saturday, May 12th, 2012. If you have any small working appliances, furniture in good or better condition, tools and other household items that you would like to donate, please call Natalee Vroman 206-399-7748 or Jan Hunter 206-849-7906 and we will be happy to come and pick them up! Your donations are tax-deductible and we will provide you with a charitable contribution receipt. Rainbow Gets Girls Ready for Life! Check us out at

West Seattle Whale Watch: Orcas make a splash!

Thanks to Gary Jones for sharing photos of the orcas that put on a show between Alki Point and Bainbridge Island late this morning!

We heard about it via Facebook, went down to the water to see if we could see them, and no luck (again), so Gary’s photos are much appreciated. Expert watchers say all this leaping is because they’re feeding.

We also got a call from a nice person who said he could see them via telescope from his home over Beach Drive (and offered us the chance to use it), but at the time – 12:30ish – they were “way on the other side.”

According to the Orca Network‘s latest Facebook update, these are likely “transients” – orcas that eat mammals (seals, sea lions, whales) instead of fish, which is the staple of Puget Sound’s resident orcas.

West Seattle Chamber of Commerce honors winners, hears economic optimism

Story by Tracy Record
Photos by Patrick Sand
West Seattle Blog co-publishers

“Are we out of the recession? Yes, we are,” declared local economic Matthew Gardner in his keynote speech at this morning’s West Seattle Chamber of Commerce annual awards breakfast.

Emceeing the event, Chamber board chair Dave Montoure, owner of West 5, declared that to be “a good message for us to hear today,” on behalf of the 120 people gathered at Salty’s on Alki to hear.

More on Gardner’s economic insights later – but first, the awardees!

(From left, WS Garden Tour’s Jim Reid, The Grove’s Lynn Sweeney Pedersen, Pete Spalding, Dave Montoure, AmericanWest Bank’s David Kim)
They were announced back in February (WSB coverage here), but the breakfast celebration is always an occasion for the business community to gather and not only give the awardees well-earned applause, but also to celebrate the community’s ongoing growth.

AmericanWest Bank

Junction branch manager David Kim – who also chairs the Chamber’s Ambassador Committee – accepted the award, noting that AWB (a new name for what had been Viking Bank, before last year’s merger) is a “business-focused community bank.”

The Grove/West Seattle Inn

Montoure introduced owner Lynn Sweeney Pedersen after recalling that when the Chamber polled members in 2010 about what West Seattle needs most, there were two answers – a hospital and a hotel. The Sweeney family made the latter dream come true last year.

Sweeney Pedersen recounted the property’s makeover last year, from rundown motel to “comfortable, friendly, affordable lodging,” saying their work isn’t over yet – they’re working on “continuous improvement.” She also mentioned that this weekend they will celebrate the complex’s “50th birthday,” since it was built for the Seattle World’s Fair half a century ago (as the Mar-Lyn, after original owners Martin and Evelyn).

West Seattle Garden Tour

President Jim Reid accepted the award, talking about the WSGT’s roots in the mid-1990s, founded by community advocate Irene Stewart. Since then, he said, it was raised and donated nearly a quarter-million dollars to causes in the community, facilitating the community’s “stepping up to make up for the decline in government funding” of some of those services. It’s an all-volunteer organization, and its planning is in high gear for this year’s tour, July 15th (more info here), and Reid said, you have one more week to sign up as a sponsor (WSB is among them again this year).

Pete Spalding

Montoure quipped that when he asked Spalding for his bio, it was a page and a half long. Just a few toplines of what he’s up to currently – West Seattle Food Bank board, Southwest Precinct Advisory Council, Pigeon Point Neighborhood Council, Parks and Green Spaces Levy Oversight Committee … Spalding, no stranger to awards but clearly moved by this one, said with his trademark Southern-accent humility and humor, “I think there are a lot of people who do a lot more in the community and are more deserving, but I’m not going to give (the award) back!” He closed his remarks by quoting the exhortation he features in his e-mail signature, “Be the change you want to see in the world.”

Ahead – toplines from the keynote, what’s next for the Chamber, and our video from this morning’s event:Read More

West Seattle schools: Roxhill Elementary ‘Night for the Stars’

April 18, 2012 10:28 am
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 |   How to help | West Seattle news | West Seattle schools

Many other West Seattle schools have had their fundraising auctions, as reported here earlier this spring – and now we have one more to tell you about: Roxhill Elementary‘s second annual fundraiser, “Night for the Stars,” coming up May 4th at 415 Westlake in South Lake Union. They’re selling tickets AND accepting donated items/services for the event, says Michelle Lehman:

This event is going to be tons of fun, with great items up for auction, food catered from the fabulous Joanie’s Catering (a West Seattle business), a wine toss, live music and more!

Tickets are $35.00 in advance, and $40.00 at the door. They can be purchased at the school, from your favorite Roxhill teacher, or online (go here).

Your ticket price includes a complimentary glass of champagne, appetizers provided by Joanie’s Catering, and access to all of the fabulous items donated from businesses all over the Greater Seattle area. Curious about what we have to offer? Check out our auction blog (go here) to see some of the incredible items we will be auctioning off.

So come on down to South Lake Union, bid on some fabulous items and support a wonderful cause!

We are still accepting donations, so if you would like to donate a service, item, dessert or wine to the event, please contact me at, or bring it by the school. Thanks for supporting West Seattle students!

“The Stars,” by the way, refers to Roxhill’s official symbol/mascot.

West Seattle Wednesday: Chamber awards; ‘Exit,’ night 1; community meetings in Delridge, Morgan

April 18, 2012 7:59 am
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 |   West Seattle news | WS miscellaneous

(Don Brubeck photographed picnickers on Alki in the rain!)
From the WSB West Seattle Events calendar:

PARTIAL VIADUCT/99 CLOSURE OVERNIGHT: Once again tonight, southbound Highway 99/Alaskan Way Viaduct will be closed 10 pm-5 am for reinforcement work.

WEST SEATTLE CHAMBER OF COMMERCE AWARDS BREAKFAST: Happening right now at Salty’s, till about 9 am; coverage to come. (Here’s the list of winners!)

SAVVY SEATTLE WOMEN: Their “Wine and Wisdom” networking event is at 6 tonight, Prudential Northwest Realty offices in Jefferson Square.

DELRIDGE NEIGHBORHOODS DISTRICT COUNCIL: 7 pm at Youngstown Cultural Arts Center, with guest presentations including the downtown waterfront/seawall project and Community Power Works (WSB sponsor) energy-assessment program.

MORGAN COMMUNITY ASSOCIATION: Quarterly meeting at 7 tonight, downstairs meeting rooms at The Kenney. The agenda (see it here) includes an update on the Murray Combined Sewer Overflow project to put an underground storage tank across from Lowman Beach Park.

OPENING NIGHT AT ARTSWEST: ‘Exit, Pursued by a Bear’ opens tonight, 7:30 pm.

Even more on the calendar!

Memorial this Saturday for longtime West Seattleite George Carfrae

Services are planned this Saturday for George Carfrae, whose family shares this remembrance:

George Carfrae, 77, of West Seattle, passed away from complications related to Parkinson’s disease April 9, 2012. He died peacefully, surrounded by his family. George was born in Seattle January 2, 1935.

He graduated from West Seattle HS in 1953 and received an Associate’s degree from South Seattle Community College.

George married Joyce Thomason April 23, 1954. He worked as a cost estimator at Todd Shipyards and Foss Maritime and served in the US Army from 1957-1965. He enjoyed gardening, traveling and playing cribbage.

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Delridge Produce Cooperative: What’s next, after Monday meeting

April 18, 2012 1:50 am
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 |   Delridge | DESC Delridge project | How to help | West Seattle news

The Delridge Produce Cooperative board is about to take the next step toward potentially running a food store in the future Delridge Supportive Housing building: Next week, it’s expecting to submit a Memorandum of Understanding to DESC. That was one headline from Monday night’s DPC meeting at Delridge Library. Representing the co-op were board members Ariana Rose Taylor-Stanley and Ranette Iding; they were careful to say that the MOU is not a lease, nor a guarantee of one, but it will enable architects to move forward with planning the development of the ground-floor commercial space they’re likely to occupy in the building. DPC is hoping to find a community volunteer who can help them with the MOU.

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