day : 01/10/2012 13 results

West Seattle coyotes: 4 sightings, South Admiral to Highland Park

Bryan photographed that coyote in his back yard near 36th and Hinds, where he says it’s showed up the past two days. That’s one of four sightings we’ve received in the past five days, including:

*13th and Cloverdale (same area mentioned during last week’s Highland Park Action Committee meeting), last Friday morning. Amy writes, “I was walking home from dropping my kindergartner off at Highland Park Elementary. I was heading west on Cloverdale and saw the coyote on the corner of 13th and Cloverdale.”

*Also in Highland Park, last Thursday. Erin writes, “Saw a coyote … run across our backyard that borders the greenbelt in Highland Park. After clapping loudly to scare it away, I realized there was a second one off in the woods in a different direction.”

*From the Fairmount Ravine area, Jennifer sent in a “found cat” note last week – after, she said, “I just had a coyote chase a young gray cat into my yard. … He sat down across the street from my partner and yawned at him this morning when he interrupted the cat chase by going out to get in his car.”

We report periodically on coyote sightings not in the interest of hysteria, but in the interest of neighbors reminding neighbors that they live among us. For answers to questions such as “what do I do if I see one?” and “what do I do to encourage them to keep their distance?” the state’s Living With Wildlife: Coyotes infopage offers thorough advice. Archived coyote reports published on WSB can be found here; the map we published earlier this year, to show all the places WSB readers have reported sightings since 2007, can be seen here.

MicroChix talk with seniors to tackle robotics challenge

October 1, 2012 9:50 pm
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle people

How can robotics make life easier for seniors? That’s one question the MicroChix, a group of local Girl Scouts, are working on, as part of a special regional challenge (explained here). To help tackle the topic, they came to The Kenney (WSB sponsor) to talk with some of the residents on Sunday afternoon. In our photo, MicroChix members are showing a project they worked on previously, looking for a robotic solution to a problem faced with food service equipment, something they even discussed with Husky Deli proprietor Jack Miller. Before the challenge competition is over this winter, the MicroChix will build a LEGO robot to try to solve unique quality-of-life challenges for seniors. We’ll check back with them to see how it goes!

2 food drives: Therapists all month, Rotarians on Friday

October 1, 2012 8:28 pm
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 |   How to help | Rotary Club of West Seattle | West Seattle news

Two food drives that will be all the more successful with YOUR help:

ALL MONTH LONG: Sound Physical Therapy has challenged other clinics in West Seattle for “a good-natured competition to celebrate National Physical Therapy Month.” All month long, they’ll accept food donations – and at month’s end, the West Seattle Food Bank will weigh the donations and announce who “won.” Even if you’re not a client, stop by the nearest clinic and drop off a donation! Also participating (we’ve linked each name to their website so you can find the clinic): Highline PT, Life in Balance, BioJunction Sports Therapy, Southwest Hand Therapy, Cascade Dizziness and Balance, Kinetic Physical Therapy. (The “wish list” for the food bank is the same one in the next item.)

THIS FRIDAY NIGHT: The Rotary Club of West Seattle invites you to a food drive that’s also a fun way to wind up the week. From publicity chair Dave Nichols:

The Rotary Club of West Seattle is known as the fun club. While we have serious meetings and have serious goals to help the community, on the First Friday we meet at a West Seattle watering hole for fellowship and libations.

This Friday (October 5th), we will be meeting at The Cask, located at 2350 California Ave SW, from 5 pm till 7 pm. In order to be a little serious, we would like to ask the community to stop by to meet their local Rotarians and drop off a food donation for the West Seattle Food Bank. We will have a donation barrel set up at the front door.

The West Seattle Food Bank serves around 900 families a week and consistently distributes more than 100,000 pounds of food each month. As far as our food donations go, The West Seattle Food Bank purchases about 12% of its food, and rely on local businesses, grocery stores, farmer’s markets and individual food drives for the rest.

While all donations help, a wish list from the West Seattle Food Bank follows:

Baby formula
Protein items (including tuna, peanut butter, beans)
Reusable, Paper & Plastic Bags
Canned soup
Pet Food
Hygiene items
Fresh produce
Office supplies like copy paper

Followup: Site chosen for West Seattle Cardboard Challenge

Last Friday, we shared a request from Marie, who publishes Make and Takes – she was looking for a venue to hold a Caine’s Arcade Cardboard Challenge this Saturday (October 6th). Thanks to everybody’s help, she found one – The Kenney (WSB sponsor; 7125 Fauntleroy Way SW). For details of what’ll happen there 11 am-2 pm Saturday, and to RSVP, go here. And/or click ahead for more details from Marie:Read More

West Seattle traffic alert: Crash on westbound bridge

A crash toward the west end of the westbound West Seattle Bridge has been causing some backup this past half-hour. No other details – just a heads-up that the drive/ride home might be slower than usual.

Metro changes: First afternoon/evening commute

The first afternoon commute since Metro launched West Seattle’s RapidRide C Line and restructured/dropped/added other routes is getting under way. Thanks in advance for your updates on how it’s going. For our morning coverage, including more than 100 comments and Metro’s responses to some concerns, go here.

ADDED 8:41 PM: Metro’s official news release assessing Day 1 – including some of the points we included in an update to our morning report – read on:Read More

Followup: Meander’s Kitchen crowdfunding campaign, as work begins at new WC space

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

Two weeks after announcing plans to open a bigger location in White Center, Meander’s Kitchen owner Miranda Krone tells WSB she’s taking possession of the new space tomorrow.

And with that, she has launched a crowdfunding campaign in hopes of getting some extra capital for the move. It launched at early today; we asked her a few followup questions about the campaign’s goal.

Miranda explains that besides having more room, the main impetus for moving is “because the future of our lease is in question. … Our lease ends in December, and I thought it wisest to start looking for a new location now, rather than wait until the last minute and find ourselves scrambling to find a place or be forced to close down. Though we’ve been crazy busy, all of our costs have gone up significantly, too. Everything goes back into the restaurant; equipment repairs (of which there have been many), increased labor, higher overhead for the expansion, so on and so forth. I can’t really afford to move us, but it’s that or close if we lose that lease.”

Does the new space – downtown White Center’s eight-months-closed Papa’s Pub – need much work? we asked. Miranda says, “The Papa’s space is in pretty good shape, and the building owner is making a few minor repairs for us. We will be purchasing all of the equipment from him, however, instead of it being included in the lease. We’ll also need to purchase some additional pieces of equipment, as well as things like plates and silverware and paint and the labor hours to get the paint on the walls and all of the little things that add up very quickly.”

She is planning on two months before they’ll open in WC, but hoping they won’t need that long. She also says, “It’s been pretty amazing how much support we’ve had from the White Center business community … Folks from several of the businesses in the neighborhood have stopped by or sent messages to welcome us … I feel really, really good about joining them.”

P.S. Her crowdfunding pitch, by the way, isn’t a simple case of “give me money.” As many do with these types of campaigns, she’s offering gifts for donors at various levels, such as her homemade ketchup for $30 donors and a private dinner party for $500 donors. The goal: $15,000.

2nd week of 25th SW project – plus, how to get money for work in your neighborhood

If you’ve been in North Delridge the past week and wondered about a section of 25th SW blocked off with heavy equipment working behind ROAD CLOSED signs – this is a Neighborhood Street Fund project, which means that community members applied for city funding – and got the grant. SDOT has a webpage about the project, which is along 25th between Brandon and Findlay, with this basic description of what’s happening:

New sidewalks, curbs, rain gardens, street trees in planting strip area.

These changes will: improve the pedestrian environment by providing a landscaped buffer from traffic; improve drainage, and traffic-calm the street. The new street width on 25th Ave SW will be 25’ wide with parallel on-street parking on both sides of the street. The narrowed street width will have a traffic-calming benefit for the neighborhood and further enhance pedestrian safety.

The process of getting a grant and getting the project built takes a while – it’s been two years since we reported the city decided this would get funding. But if there is something in your neighborhood – in city right-of-way (street, alley, planting strips) – that you think might qualify, the next round of applications is due December 17th, and this recent SDOT writeup explains how to go after a share of the money.

West Seattle traffic/pedestrian alert: Highland Park Way work

October 1, 2012 1:56 pm
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 |   Transportation | West Seattle news

Just in from SDOT:

For the next three days, the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) will be doing maintenance work on the west side of Highland Park Way SW at SW Othello Street. Tuesday through Thursday, October 2 – 4, SDOT crews will be working from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. While the work is in progress, traffic will be shifted to the southbound lanes where there will be one lane open for travel in each direction. The sidewalk on the west side of Highland Park Way SW will be closed to pedestrians through the work zone. Motorists should plan on slowing down through the work area.

West Seattle Autoworks celebrates 2nd anniversary, says ‘thanks’

Want one of those T-shirts, free? Stop by West Seattle Autoworks (35th and Webster) before they close tonight, wish them happy 2nd anniversary (they opened 10/1/2010), and tell them you heard about it here on WSB. WS Autoworks co-owner Todd Ainsworth says, “We couldn’t organize a formal party, but would like to thank West Seattle and all of our great customers for making year #2 even better than year #1. We’re so proud to be able to be part of the West Seattle business community after living here nearly all of my life, and we are happy to be serving some of the best customers I have ever worked with!”

As WS Autoworks enters year three, we asked Todd what’s new. For one, he says, “a program that we offer now that provides a year of roadside assistance when the vehicle is serviced at our shop (at no extra charge to the customer) and the fact we have loaner cars available.” He adds that they now offer gift cards: “We think it’s a good way for parents to make sure their young drivers will always have a way to take care of the car (without giving them cash!).” They’ve also added two more employees, and are enjoying the opportunity for lots of community involvement, too – co-sponsoring the West Seattle Junction Car Show again this year as well as involvement with organizations including the West Seattle YMCA (also a WSB sponsor) and West Seattle Little League. Congratulations, West Seattle Autoworks!

You can help! Easy ways to volunteer @ 3 local schools

October 1, 2012 11:38 am
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 |   How to help | West Seattle news | West Seattle schools

EDITOR’S NOTE: Again this year, local volunteer/community advocate Judy Pickens is talking with local schools about roles you can fill, if you can spare a little time to volunteer. Here’s her first compilation of the new school year.

By Judy Pickens
Special to West Seattle Blog

The new school year brings new opportunities to make a difference in area schools by volunteering to do a one-time or ongoing task. Each school has its own personality but all have in common a culturally diverse student body, including many students new to English.

Because of increased enrollment in our public schools, they also have in common classrooms that are bursting at the seams. When class size goes up in an already culturally and academically diverse classroom, a teacher’s need for volunteer support becomes critical to each child’s having a successful year.

An e-mail to the address given will bring you more information about any of the following opportunities to lend a hand.


At White Center Heights Elementary (10015 6th SW)

Ongoing: Adults for crossing guard before (8:40-9:10 AM) and after (3:44-4:00 PM) school. Pick your day/shift M-F.

Ongoing: Adults for playground supervision, 12:02-1:00 PM. Pick your day M-F.

Ongoing: Adults to help supervise students during lunch, 12:05-1:10 PM. Pick your day M-F.


At Highland Park Elementary (1012 SW Trenton)

Ongoing: Adults or older teens to support classroom teachers with tasks such as listening to students read or preparing materials; varies by teacher/grade. Pick any hours/days M-F, 9 AM-4 PM, and grade.


At West Seattle Elementary (6760 34th SW)

Ongoing: Adult to help with the composting program during lunchtime, 11:15-12:45. Pick your day, M-F.

Ongoing: Adult to help monitor students during breakfast,, 8:10-8:35 AM. Pick your day, M-F.

Ongoing: Adults or older teens to support classroom teachers with tasks such as tutoring students one-on-one or preparing materials; varies by teacher/grade. Pick any hours/days 9 AM-3 PM, and grade.

One-time: Adults to help escort students during picture day, Oct. 15, 9 AM-2:30. Shift or all day.

One-time: Adult or older teen to clear and till the school garden. At your convenience.

West Seattle Crime Watch: About that arrest outside Holy Rosary

This morning we have the story from police regarding an arrest on Sunday outside Holy Rosary just before 12:30 pm. People who contacted/asked us about the incident were worried because they thought the man had a gun. He did NOT, according to police, though what they say he had is alarming enough. Det. Mark Jamieson just checked the report for us and here’s what police say happened:

Around 11:40 am Sunday, a man in a vehicle saw the suspect walking on the sidewalk in the Admiral Safeway/Hiawatha area, screaming, shirtless, carrying something “shrouded” in a shirt. The witness “thought it was something long, possibly a rifle.” The witness, Det. Jamieson says, got out of his vehicle and confronted the man on the steps into Hiawatha park, asking if he had a gun. The suspect – described by police as a 23-year-old transient – uncovered the item and pointed it at the other man: It was a three-foot-long “pointed construction spike.” The man who had confronted him backed away as the suspect yelled that this was none of his business; he continued screaming, and the other man, police say, got back into his car, called 911, and followed the screaming man as he walked south. He stayed on the phone, reporting what the suspect was doing and which way he was going, until officers intercepted the suspect at 42nd and Genesee (by Holy Rosary).

He still had the long spike concealed in a shirt, in his right hand; officers, Det. Jamieson says, “were able to convince him to set it down.” He was booked into King County Jail for investigation of harassment. Nobody was hurt.

Metro changes: First commute since start of RapidRide, restructuring

(RapidRide bus photographed in The Triangle on Saturday afternoon)
It’s the first weekday since Metro‘s West Seattle RapidRide launch and route restructuring, and we’re looking forward to hearing commute reports from West Seattle bus riders, while also planning to head out ourselves to check on a few popular outbound bus stops. In the meantime, here’s an early reminder, in case you’re a bus rider but somehow forgot that things are different (for most) today:

*Here’s a news release Metro sent Sunday night with info-links and key points such as the end of the Ride Free Area and the start of pay-when-you-board, no matter which way you’re going

*Here’s the direct link to the Metro page with all the changes

*Our coverage over the weekend included comments from WSB’ers who’ve taken buses since the Saturday morning change – read from here, and/or from here

*Remember the new Route 50 is starting with a change in plan

*West Seattle isn’t the only area going through changes – here’s a regional overview by Seattle Times (WSB partner) transportation reporter Mike Lindblom

More as the day goes on!

7:42 AM: Mike (who’s a West Seattleite) is among those tracking the RR C Line’s debut commute (via Twitter, right now, from on board one). He has quoted a rider as noting same thing a couple WSB commenters have so far – it’s crowded. Also from comments here: Real-time schedule display at 35th/Avalon isn’t working on the northbound side.

7:56 AM: Commenter Casey says Fauntleroy/Alaska display also says “refer to schedule” rather than times for next buses.

9:20 AM: We’re just back from a tour along much of the RapidRide route. We checked several stops/stations and they all had REFER TO SCHEDULE, so it just might not have been working at all. In The Junction, three Metro workers were there to answer questions (two in our photo) when we stopped around 8:30 – two on the outbound side, one on the inbound side.

12:35 PM: We’re expecting some responses from Metro this afternoon around some of the major issues (in particular, we asked about the multiple reports of very crowded buses). Also, there’s a live chat right now on with Mike Lindblom and a Metro rep – if you miss it, you can still go back and review the Q/A in the chat window.

3:38 PM: Just in from Metro spokesperson Jeff Switzer – responses to some of the most commonly voiced concerns:

It can be difficult to predict how riders might change their habits during these first few days depending on how busy or full a particular trip might be, so we will be monitoring. We have the ability to send an additional RapidRide coach that can be added when needed during times of high ridership and are exploring that for Tuesday morning.

To keep buses and trains moving in the downtown Seattle transit tunnel during the afternoon commute, Metro personnel will have portable ORCA card readers to help riders board buses at Westlake, University Street and International District stations. Portable ORCA card readers also will be used to help riders board during the evening commute at Third Avenue and Pike Street, Third Avenue and Union Street and Second Avenue and Columbia Street.

Route 54 Express has been replaced by frequent all-day service on RapidRide C Line and an increased number of trips on Route 116 Express. The C Line provides a frequent connection for Route 54 Express riders to the north part of downtown Seattle, while the Route 116 Express, in combination with routes 118 and 119, provide a direct connection to SODO and the south part of downtown Seattle. Metro eliminated Route 54 Express because it would be duplicative of RapidRide service.

Metro is currently working out the kinks with some of its passenger facilities, such as real time information signs and ORCA card readers. We are aware of the problem and hope to have them up and running soon. We ask for your patience over the next few days as we work to resolve any further issues with the service change.

We are working to make sure the electronic arrival signs are working as expected. Working to confirm that they are fixed at this point.