year : 2012 3917 results

Viaduct/Tunnel project traffic alert: Alaskan Way S. reroute

January 4, 2012 10:26 am
|    Comments Off on Viaduct/Tunnel project traffic alert: Alaskan Way S. reroute
 |   Alaskan Way Viaduct | Transportation | West Seattle news

Since Alaskan Way is part of the surface connection between here and downtown/points beyond, you might be interested in this WSDOT announcement about a reroute taking effect tomorrow (see the map here):

Drivers who use Alaskan Way South along Seattle’s waterfront can expect major changes beginning this week as crews make way for the SR 99 tunnel construction zone.

Washington State Department of Transportation crews will reroute Alaskan Way South between South Main and South King streets beginning at 5 a.m. Thursday, Jan. 5. Drivers will travel on a new temporary roadway located underneath the Alaskan Way Viaduct, while crews use the old roadway to relocate utilities and prepare for tunnel work.

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Tea time! More room at the WestSide Baby tea tables this year

(WSB photos by Patrick Sand)
No post-holiday-season break for staff and volunteers of WestSide Baby. Last night at their White Center/West Seattle donation center, hundreds of invitations were hand-addressed for WS Baby’s biggest event of the year – the annual Benefit Tea, coming up February 12th (2-4:30 pm). And the big news this year is that the event – whose “table captains” led the way last night – is moving to a new location, after three sell-out years with more than 450 in attendance each time. This year, it’s at the Hilton Seattle Airport & Conference Center near Sea-Tac Airport, still close enough for area supporters, but big enough to potentially accommodate hundreds more guests, according to honorary Tea chair Toddy Dyer and WS Baby’s executive director Nancy Woodland:

Other traditions won’t change, according to the official announcement sent by WS Baby, which served 19,000 children last year:

The Tea tradition includes tables set with individual sets of china shared by community members, mimosas, BabyCakes by Avalon Glassworks, wonderful Troll Bead bracelet prizes donated by Wyatt’s Jewelers and, most importantly, an incredible gathering of the community in support of families in need of basic items such as diapers, car seats, clothing and shoes.

The BabyCakes are beautiful blown-glass creations like this one shown at last night’s volunteer work party:

A few more event details:

WestSide Baby has identified areas where the need is not being met – more car seats, diapers, baby wipes, older children’s clothes, strollers and highchairs are needed. “A successful Tea in February will set the stage for planning increased impact for the rest of the year because funds raised directly support our programs and general operating costs. “ according to Woodland.

Keynote speaker Kathy LeMay, author of “The Generosity Plan,” will inspire guests by sharing her personal motto to “do what you can, with what you have, where you are.” (Teddy Roosevelt) Ms. LeMay will challenge guests to “lead their most generous life, make a lasting difference, and positively influence the world’s unwritten future.”

Tickets are $30. Tables for 10 range from $250-$500 and business sponsorship opportunities are available. There will be a program, an opportunity to give and time to socialize too. The suggested minimum donation is $100. For more information about the Tea or to purchase tickets or a table, visit or call Jolyn Mason, WestSide Baby Development Director at (206) 686-3124.

Here’s our coverage of last year’s WestSide Baby tea.

West Seattle Wednesday: Schools, trees, jets…

At sunrise Tuesday, Don Brubeck took that photo while pausing on his bike at the fishing bridge along the East Duwamish Waterway. (He says the red-hulled, docked ship is the Norway-flagged Nina Victory.) What’s ahead today? Highlights from the WSB West Seattle Events calendar:

SOUTH SEATTLE COMMUNITY COLLEGE NEW STUDENTS RECEPTION/RESOURCE FAIR: Two sessions, noon and 4:30 pm, in the Brockey Center auditorium – details on the school calendar.

BLUE ANGEL SIGHTING: Blue Angels jet #7 due to arrive for Seafair‘s winter planning meetings, expected on the east side of Boeing Field around 1:15 pm.

SCHOOL BOARD ON REOPENING BOREN: The Seattle School Board will consider the “short-term capacity management plan” (see it here), including the official proposal to reopen Boren Junior High School on Delridge as an “option” elementary school for any and all West Seattle-area students to choose to attend. Meeting is at 6 pm, district HQ in SODO.

SOUTHWEST DISTRICT COUNCIL: The city’s proposed street-tree ordinance – recently reported and discussed here – is part of what’s on the agenda for tonight’s Southwest District Council meeting, 7 pm, board room at South Seattle Community College (6000 16th SW).

GET FIT WEST SEATTLE: Want to go “from couch to half-marathon”? Check out tonight’s Get Fit West Seattle info/intro night at West Seattle Runner (WSB sponsor), 7 pm (California/Charlestown).

PRIDE SKATE: Tonight’s the monthly Pride Skate at Southgate Roller Rink in White Center, 9 pm – the theme, ’70s!

PARTIAL BRIDGE CLOSURE: Another Fauntleroy Expressway closure is scheduled tonight, approximately 9 pm to 5 am, west end of West Seattle Bridge. (Check the cams on the WSB West Seattle Traffic page get a look on the westbound status.)

Video: West Seattle HS boys face state’s No. 1-ranked team

Story and video by Randall G. Hauk
Reporting for West Seattle Blog

If “beat the No. 1 team in the state” was a New Year’s resolution for the West Seattle High School boys’ basketball team, they were’t quite able to keep it on Tuesday night, losing 76-53 to visiting Rainier Beach HS.

RBHS brought with them their No. 1 ranking in Washington’s 3A classification, a spotless 8-0 record, and the state’s highest-rated player in Anrio Adams, who is signed to play basketball for the Kansas Jayhawks next season. As if that weren’t enough, ESPN also has the Vikings listed as the 26th-best team in the nation.

Those credentials were on display early and often, as the visitors scored the first seven points of the game and never trailed, saddling the home Wildcats with their first loss of 2012.

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West Seattle Sky Watch: Quadrantids meteor shower tonight

Missed this somehow – until someone just texted to ask about it. There’s a meteor shower out tonight, and we just walked outside to confirm that the sky is – at least right now – mostly clear, so getting a good look is not out of the question. It’s the Quadrantids meteor shower; NASA has lots of information and some live-cam links, here. Their visibility map shows that our area (and everywhere in the “green” zone) should get a good show provided the weather cooperates. Best visibility, says NASA, will start right after moonset, 3 am-ish, and continue till dawn.

Followup: Why New Year’s gunfire on Alki brought out SWAT

Tonight we finally have details on the gunfire incident that brought Seattle Police SWAT officers to an Alki neighborhood in the early hours of New Year’s Day, as mentioned briefly here that night.

We’ve obtained the full police report; what follows is what SPD says happened, starting with multiple 911 calls reporting “shots fired” at 60th/Hinds (map) less than an hour into the New Year:Read More

Sealth student organizing benefit for Nicaragua hurricane victims

That’s TONNULL, one of three bands – along with One Class Lady and Echo9 – ready to rock Youngstown Cultural Arts Center this Saturday as a benefit for hurricane victims in Nicaragua. Desiree e-mailed to let us know about the concert, which she says is Chief Sealth International High School student Kathryn Purcell‘s senior project. The concert is set for 7:30-11 pm January 7 at Youngstown, admission $7, benefiting the rural Nicaraguan community of El Quebrachal, where Hurricane Rina caused major damage to homes and school facilities earlier this fall. Find more information on this Facebook page set up for Kathryn’s project.

West Seattle holiday postscript: Light-show generosity

(WSB photo from the show’s first night of this past holiday season, November 26, 2011)
The music-synched Helmstetler Family Christmas Lights Spectacular is dark till next November, but mastermind Jim Winder has a postscript – a final report on the donations made by visitors/fans:

Thank You West Seattle for another great Season of Giving

TOTAL GIVING FOR 2011!! $2960.86

$1200 for the Dr. Ed Kingston Memorial Fund
$865.43 for Northwest Parkinson Foundation
$895.43 for the West Seattle Food Bank

1433 lbs of food

If you just can’t wait till next holiday season – there’s already a countdown calendar on the show’s official site!

DESC ‘redesigning’ Delridge project after city cuts number of allowed units

(June 2011 photo of DESC Delridge project’s proposed site)
The Downtown Emergency Service Center‘s proposed Delridge Supportive Housing project is suddenly undergoing a redesign, according to documents filed with the Washington State Housing Finance Commission as part of the next round of financing DESC is seeking – and that redesign will be for a project with 66 units, not 75 units as originally proposed.

The city Office of Housing had originally granted a waiver to DESC, allowing it to propose a 75-unit project even though the amount of “extremely low-income housing” in the area was supposed to max out at 63 units beyond what it currently has. Neighborhood advocates had questioned the information on which the waiver was based – and now, according to a city document also on file with the WSHFC as part of the DESC application, it appears they had grounds for concern.

Documents from the city, dated in mid-December, say that newly available 2010 census information superseded what DESC had been working with, and that the site now could only support 66 units in this income range. This notification came just as DESC was about to submit its application for Low-Income Housing Tax Credits to the WSHFC, and since there wasn’t enough time for them to completely redo the application, they are redesigning the project right now, and expecting to submit new information by the end of this month. The documentation we just reviewed at WSHFC offices downtown includes this DESC explanation:

This late change creates both capital and operational inefficiencies. It is also driving the total development costs over the WSHFC cost limits. Our team is currently redesigning the project with a new cost estimate, and a revised development budget will be shared with WSHFC and other public funders by january 31, 2012.

We attempted to reach DESC leadership by phone and e-mail earlier today for comment, and so far have not heard back. We are still reviewing a few more documents related to this and will add any additional information of relevance.

The Delridge project first came to light last June and has since moved through stages including property purchase – $768,000 for three lots in the 5400 block of Delridge Way SW, with the sale initiated last April and closed one month ago – as well as city, county, and state financing approvals, plus the first round of city Design Review (with a second round to come, though no date is set). Our coverage of the project is archived here.

West Seattle Crime Watch: Burglary suspects nabbed on Sanislo roof

A question came in last night about a police/fire sighting at Sanislo Elementary on New Year’s Day. Nothing on the logs when we looked – but now the answer is in, via SPD Blotter:

On 01-01-2012, just shortly before 3:00 p.m., officers responded with school security, to an alarm at a school in the 1800 block of SW Myrtle St. Officers set up containment and used Seattle Fire Department ladders to gain access to the rooftop, where the 2 suspects (men 27 and 19 years-old) were hiding. The suspects were taking into custody without incident. The suspects had two packs filled with items stolen from the school. They also had burglary tools. Both suspects were booked into King County Jail for Investigation of Burglary.

That wasn’t the only time local police called on SFD to help with an investigation this past week – we covered a ladder-to-the-roof effort early December 29th in The Junction.

Want to be more helpful in 2012? Chance to mentor new moms/dads

January 3, 2012 2:16 pm
|    Comments Off on Want to be more helpful in 2012? Chance to mentor new moms/dads
 |   How to help | West Seattle news | West Seattle people

The early weeks/months of parenthood can be scary as well as joyful – suddenly you’re responsible for a little person who depends completely on you. If you’re up for helping brand-new parents get through that time, here’s your chance. Just received from Martha:

PEPS is looking for group leaders for Newborn Groups in West Seattle. Now that the holidays are over, please consider leading a PEPS Group! We have new parents anxiously awaiting the start of their groups – if you remember how valuable your own PEPS experience was, please consider volunteering to lead a PEPS Group in West Seattle. PEPS provides the training and materials. You can also co-lead with a friend to divide up the time commitment! For more information, see our website, and/or contact our Volunteer Manager, Cate Palmer, directly at We would love to hear from you ASAP!

The WSBeat: Of mushrooms and bullets, among other things

By Megan Sheppard
On the WSBeat, for West Seattle Blog

As always, the WSBeat summaries are from reports on cases handled recently by Southwest Precinct officers, beyond our ongoing breaking-news (etc.) coverage:

*Early Christmas morning, officers contacted two men suspected of threatening and harassing a woman in the 2100 block of Harbor Ave. SW. Luckily, one was deterred from reaching toward the small of his back; it turned out that he was carrying a loaded Colt .45 handgun in a shoulder holster. He did not have a license to carry the weapon, which had been reported stolen from a home in Redmond associated with gang activity. He also carried prescription muscle relaxer, 15 rounds of loose .45-caliber ammo, a stolen wallet and Social Security card. The other suspect carried 63 grams of hallucinogenic mushrooms, two crack pipe kits, and one needle kit. One of the suspects is an 18-year-old with a Alaska Junction area address; the other is a 22-year-old transient whose last known address was in Arlington. Both were booked into King County Jail for investigation of narcotics possession and harassment. One faces additional charges for carrying a concealed pistol and for possession of stolen property.

Seven more summaries ahead, including another bullet discovery, driving dilemmas, and more:Read More

Heads up: Blue Angels jet arriving at Boeing Field tomorrow

A West Seattle fan of the Blue Angels just asked us the other day if one of the jets would be here again this year for the Seafair winter planning meetings – and indeed, word just arrived, Blue Angels jet #7 is expected around 1:15 tomorrow afternoon at Boeing Field, with an 11 am Thursday departure planned. Seafair says Blue Angels #7 Lieutenant Mark Tedrow and #8 Lieutenant Todd Royles will be on board. This year’s airshow is set for August 3rd-5th. (Our coverage of last year’s winter visit is here.)

West Seattle biznotes: Moving, changing, pouring, playing…

(Thanks to TouchTech SystemsBrian Presser for the photo!)
CLASSIC BARBER SHOP’S MOVE: If you’re in The Junction and notice that sign – it is actually related to two other stories we have covered in the past few weeks: Over the New Year’s holiday, Classic Barber Shop moved from 4704 California SW to 5040 California SW, where it seamlessly picked up the space occupied by Alki Style and Barber Shop until its proprietor John Burmaz retired following his workday on New Year’s Eve (WSB coverage here). Classic would have had to move eventually anyway, since its former space is part of the building that Charlie Conner and partners just sold (WSB coverage here), along with its long-in-the-works development plans, to Chicago-based Equity Residential (no response from ER yet to inquiries about its timetable for the site).

HEARTLAND CAFE CHANGES: Just got word from proprietor Jay Wergin that Heartland Café has made some changes in its hours: “First and most important is, our hours have changed. We are open for the first time on Mondays for breakfast and lunch but will close the café at 3 pm. The bar will be open serving limited food specials on Monday until 2 am.” We’ve updated the hours on the WSB West Seattle Restaurant Guide page for The Heartland (restaurant proprietors/managers are invited to send us changes any time – we will be checking periodically but we’d also like to announce your changes when they happen; here’s how to reach WSB).

NEW COCKTAIL MENU ABOUT TO DEBUT AT THE FEEDBACK: This isn’t just any cocktail menu – it’s the cocktail menu for the bar/lounge that won Best Cocktails in the Best of Western Washington vote for two consecutive years. Mixmaster Matt Johnson unveils his new lineup at 6 pm Thursday at Feedback Lounge (WSB sponsor); you can peruse some hints via the Feedback Cocktail Club‘s Facebook page.

NEW WEBSITE FOR GUITAR TEACHER RICHIE JENKIN: Got word over the holidays that West Seattle guitar teacher Richie Jenkin, the only music teacher on the current WSB sponsor team, has a new website, including audio and video of some of his music, if you’d like to not just read more about him but HEAR his work before inquiring. Address is the same:

North Delridge tour with CIty Council, SDOT reps: You’re invited

If you live and/or drive, ride, walk, run in the North Delridge area, take note this morning that City Council and SDOT reps are coming over next week for a walking tour focused on transportation-related concerns, just announced by North Delridge Neighborhood Council transportation chair Jake Vanderplas. He says everyone’s invited; meet in front of the Delridge Community Center at 3 pm on Wednesday, January 11th. The itinerary and issues will be discussed two days before the tour, during next Monday’s monthly NDNC meeting (all welcome there too, 6:30 pm January 9th at Delridge Library).

West Seattle Tuesday: The post-holiday season begins…

(Chicken photographed at Youngstown Cultural Arts Center by Machel Spence)
Caption, anyone? Machel’s photo seems appropriate for the first full-on business/school day of the still-new year. The list of scheduled events isn’t too long today, but here’s what we have on the WSB West Seattle Events calendar:

TODDLER STORY TIME … at the West Seattle (Admiral) branch of Seattle Public Library, 10:30 am.

LOOKING FOR A NEW JOB IN THE NEW YEAR? “Notes From the Job Search” help/networking meetings continue Tuesdays at 11 am at C & P Coffee Company (WSB sponsor; 5612 California SW).

BABY STORY TIME … at the Southwest branch of Seattle Public Library, 11:30 am.

BRIDGE CLOSURE: Fauntleroy Expressway closures scheduled to continue overnight tonight through Thursday night.

NIGHTLIFE: Open-mike night, acoustic/poetry/comedy, 7 pm at Skylark Café and Club … Rock music/pop culture trivia every Tuesday night at Feedback Lounge (WSB sponsor), 8 pm .. Starlite songwriter showcase, Shadowland, 9 pm … Karaoke at Talarico’s, 9:30 pm …

West Seattle Crime Watch: Mail theft didn’t end with Christmas

We heard a lot about mail theft and package theft before Christmas. Here’s the first report we’ve had since then, from a West Seattleite who didn’t want her name published:

Between 6:45 pm on Dec. 31st and 10 am on Jan. 1st, mail from our house on 35th Ave SW just south of SW Alaska [map], was stolen! We have two mailboxes, and both were cleared out, along with a small package for our neighbor. Just a warning for people in the area, this may have been random, but it is something to think about when leaving mail on a front porch on a busy street! This was reported to the police but we haven’t heard anything from them regarding the incident.

The USPS has its own investigators to deal with mail theft, and you can file a report with them by going here. P.S. – After taking December off, the West Seattle Crime Prevention Council resumes monthly meetings in two weeks, on Tuesday, January 17th, 7 pm, Southwest Precinct meeting room; if you have neighborhood crime concerns, that’s one place to bring them to police attention, face to face. The West Seattle Blockwatch Captains Network is scheduled to meet again toward month’s end; keep an eye on their site.

West Seattle Weather Watch: Windy, but no official warnings

Reminiscent of how the Christmas Day mini-windstorm began – the wind sounds fairly fierce, but so far, no official warnings, at least onshore (Puget Sound off our shores has a “gale warning” till 8 pm, a “small craft advisory” till 4 pm Wednesday). The Alki Point weather station (K91S on this list) recorded a 52-knot gust at the top of the hour. No power problems currently on the Seattle City Light map for our area, but we’ve received two notes about Comcast problems in the Sunrise Heights area (no way to tell if it’s weather-related, of course).

West Seattle Christmas-tree recycling: Here’s how to do it

Unless you are keeping your tree up through the Epiphany – or oh, say, the Super Bowl – it’s go-time. So here are some reminders about tree-cycling, if you haven’t accomplished it already. Via the city – this is your second and final week to tree-cycle for free. (From Seattle Public Utilities:

(Curbside residential pickup:) Trees must be trimmed to 6 feet or shorter. Trim branches to less than four feet to fit into the collection trucks. Bundle each section with sisal string or twine (not plastic). Decorated, flocked and plastic trees are not recyclable and will be charged as extra garbage.

At Apartments – One tree may be placed next to each food/yard waste cart at no extra charge each collection day.

At Recycling & Disposal Stations – Clean trees can be taken for free (see hours and locations). Trees should not exceed eight feet in length and must be free of decoration. Trunks should not exceed four inches in diameter. The stations will accept up to three trees per vehicle.

The station closest to West Seattle is the South Transfer Station in South Park.

One more option – a local nonprofit youth group has a tree-cycling event next weekend: The West Seattle Rainbow Girls will hold their fifth annual Christmas tree recycle fundraiser Saturday (January 7) at the Alki Masonic Hall, 4736 40th SW, 10 am-2 pm. Suggested donation $5. No flocked trees. For more information, contact Jan Hunter at 206-849-7906. (The Rainbow Girls are also one of two groups with tree-cycling fundraisers in Burien next weekend; if you’re interested in that info, it’s in our White Center Now tree-cycling roundup.)

Video: New Year’s visit with an octopus in West Seattle waters

We’ve shown you the New Year’s Polar Bear Swim … call this one the New Year’s Octopus Swim, shared by diver/underwater photographer Laura James, from Cove 2 at Seacrest:

New Years Day Dive! from Laura James on Vimeo.

SIDE NOTE: After reviewing the video, we asked Laura about its start, in which she touches the octopus’s suction cups; she explains that it’s a way to both gauge where an octopus is in its lifecycle, and to offer “kind of a ‘hello’ but allowing it to check me out since much of their sensory input comes from suction cups. I find that if they are not OK, they retract into the den. This one seemed more curious than upset, based on color pattern. It was getting rather annoyed by paparazzi by the end of the shoot, and solved the dissatisfaction by throwing a fish at me (the cloud of silt near the end) and going back into the den!”

1 meeting that IS happening today: West Seattle Cooking Club

If you’ve ever wanted to check out the West Seattle Cooking Club – which was featured here last summer – but just couldn’t get to one of their Monday afternoon meeting, today might be your chance. 2 pm, Beveridge Place Pub. They’ll be choosing the “themes” for their next few months of meetings; today’s theme is Latin, according to the WSCC Facebook page.

Transit changes for the extra New Year’s Day holiday today

January 2, 2012 4:00 am
|    Comments Off on Transit changes for the extra New Year’s Day holiday today
 |   Transportation | West Seattle news

A few quick notes: No Water Taxi today; Metro is on a Sunday schedule; so is Sound Transit; state ferries are on the new winter schedule that took effect Sunday.

Police activity updates: Search near Camp Long; Alki response

Thanks to those who have texted in the past few minutes about a police search under way in the Camp Long/north High Point area. According to scanner traffic, a resident reported seeing someone emerge from a crawl space under a home and run away. That’s all we know so far; the description mentioned over the airwaves included “dirty blond hair” and a light-colored shirt.

Meantime, there is finally a tiny bit of official information regarding an incident early this morning in the Alki area that led to a major response in the 60th/Admiral/Hinds area. A neighbor had told us it involved people firing guns, and that indeed is the official online designation finally posted for the call (“weapon discharge”). We don’t know if anyone was arrested, and may not be able to find that out until after the extended holiday weekend.