West Seattle, Washington
(Whimsical 2011 look at a young GPO, by “Diver Laura” James)
What started with a startling incident last fall in West Seattle ended today with a vote in Olympia. As noted here earlier this week, today was the day the state Wildlife Commission planned to make a decision on whether to protect the Giant Pacific Octopus – and they decided to set aside seven areas for octopus protection. From the official news release:
The commission considered several options for managing the recreational harvest of giant Pacific octopuses before unanimously deciding to prohibit their harvest at Redondo Beach in Des Moines; Three Tree Point in Burien; Seacrest Park Coves 1, 2, and 3 (in West Seattle); an area adjacent to the Les Davis Fishing Pier in Tacoma; the Alki Beach Junk Yard in West Seattle; the Days Island Wall in Tacoma; and Deception Pass north of Oak Harbor. The new rules will take effect this fall.
Many were surprised to find out after last fall’s much-publicized incident, involving a boasted-about octopus catch, that the GPOs were not protected at all; divers and sportfishers subsequently joined the effort to figure out how/whether to change that, culminating in today’s vote.
Pizzeria 22 in the Admiral District is adding a “private event space” next door, proprietor Cary Kemp tells WSB, saying he’s just signed the lease for the former tattoo-shop storefront:
Our plan is to turn the 800 square foot space into a private events facility hosting a cornucopia of events: wedding receptions, birthdays, banquets, corporate events, holiday parties, wine dinners and wine tastings, just to name a few. We will be putting a small pass through in the back of the space that will join both rooms together. This new facility will not alter the current Pizzeria 22 space and hopefully will not alarm many of our loyal customers that appreciate our small cozy atmosphere just the way it is. Other new additions to the new space will be large family style tables, a Caffe Vita espresso bar, and a dough making facility. I would like to have this space ready by Winter so we can ring in the holidays at Pizzeria 22!
It’ll also be available for overflow, and for more outside seating under the Pizzeria 22 banner. We asked Kemp about his Junction space, reported here earlier this year: “Quadrato is coming along. We have received our health permit and should receive the building permit next week. We’ll start construction then. We have also hired a great chef who will be running the space named Jim Seath. Jim opened many restaurants as chef for Ethan Stowell and is a West Seattleite. We have already begun canning and pickling in anticipation of our Fall opening.”
We’ll remind you of all this tomorrow morning, too, but a little advance planning can’t hurt, so:
BALLOT VANS: If you haven’t mailed your ballot yet, Tuesday night is the deadline, and tomorrow is the first of three days during which you can drop it off at the official county dropoff vans – one in West Seattle, one in White Center. Details here.
BUY DIAPERS & BRING THEM TO THE MOVIES: WestSide Baby needs more diaper donations to get to its current goal – and tomorrow is your next convenient chance to drop some off. Bring them to West Seattle Outdoor Movies in the Hotwire Online Coffeehouse (WSB sponsor) courtyard, 4410 California, before the movie (“The Muppets“), whether you’re staying or not! More here.
CLEANUPS AT ALKI, DELRIDGE: Two cleanups tomorrow morning – the big Seal Sitters cleanup on Alki 9 am-noon (details here, including how to RSVP so they have enough equipment), and the latest North Delridge Neighborhood Council beautification project, 10-noon at Delridge Community Center – more here.
NO LIGHTHOUSE TOURS: One more reminder – no Alki Point Lighthouse tours tomorrow or Sunday, because everyone’s busy for Seafair. BUT remember you can catch the lighthouse-history presentation at the Log House Museum next Thursday night – details here. And speaking of the museum …
LOG HOUSE MUSEUM VOLUNTEERS: 11 am-1 pm tomorrow, the LHM would love to see you at its next volunteer-information session. How does it work? Everything you need to know is on the LHM website.
(August 2011 photo by Craig Savey, taken from Harbor Island)
Consider that orca to be jumping for joy – as orca lovers and protectors are doing too, at least in spirit. The federal government is reported today to have rejected the petition filed earlier this year suggesting that the Southern Resident Killer Whales do not merit protection as a separate, endangered species, so that protection will continue. Here’s a link from The Seattle Times (WSB partner); here’s reaction from the Center for Biological Diversity, which filed the petition that led to the SRKWs’ protection in 2005.
(Twelfth Night Productions’ “Guys and Dolls”; photo by Ron Dugdale)
More summer fun! Now, if we could only get the summer weather back – it’s drizzling as we write.
‘CIRCUS 101’ FOR TEENS: Teatro ZinZanni brings it to Southwest Library for ages 12-16 this time, 2 pm. (35th/Henderson)
DB DOWNHILL PRE-RACE/PARTY IN WEST SEATTLE: Join the Alki Beach Creeps bike club for a pre-race party, then head east to join in the annual Dead Baby Downhill bicycle race. 4 pm at Chelan Café‘s Ebb Tide Room, ride starts at 4:30 pm. (3527 Chelan SW)
FIRST NIGHT FOR NEW RESTAURANT: As reported here earlier this week, tonight is scheduled to be the first official night of operation for Westcity Sardine Kitchen, the restaurant opening where the Bohemian used to be. 5-10 pm. (3405 California SW)
ROTARY’S FIRST FRIDAY: First Friday of the month, the Rotary Club of West Seattle meets at a local venue – public always welcome – for fun and fundraising. Tonight you can join them at Feedback Lounge (WSB sponsor), 5-7 pm. (6451 California SW)
FIRST OUTDOOR CONCERT AT THE MOUNT: Optional dinner at 5:30 pm and free music at 6, on the south side of the Providence Mount St. Vincent (WSB sponsor) campus. Tonight, it’s Ian McFeron; see the full lineup (including dinner menus) for the 4-week series in our preview story from earlier this week. (4831 35th SW) ***ADDED 1:17 PM – RAIN BACKUP PLAN: We checked with Anna at The Mount to see what the backup plan is:
We will move into the café if it’s still raining. Food will be available under tents just outside of the café and entertainment will move to the café.
HIGHLAND PARK CORNER BAR: At HP Improvement Club – all ages 6 to 9 pm, 21+ after 9. Draft beer, wine, and special August cocktail, the Margarita. Live music too – Choroloco, “a band dedicated to bringing to life the music of Brazil from the early 1900s, the music that inspired it, and the music that it continues to inspire.” (12th/Holden)
SHAKESPEARE IN THE PARK: One last time, Greenstage presents “Midsummer Night’s Dream,” free, 7 pm at Lincoln Park. Thanks to Venkat for this photo from last night’s performance:
(Where in the park, you ask? From the GS website: “Our performance space is located in a meadow just southwest of the sports fields and tennis courts.”)
(WSB file photo of Madison’s east-facing gym exterior, where the sign would go)
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
2007, when Madison Middle School PTA leaders were first getting serious about raising money for a light-up signboard at school, was almost a full generation of communication ago.
It wasn’t until midway through that year that the groundbreaking smartphone, the iPhone, debuted.
It was the first full year that Facebook didn’t require members to be college students.
With the seismic shift in communication habits since then, can an electronic signboard still be relevant?
That was just one point argued in a wide-ranging appeal hearing Wednesday, with city Hearing Examiner Sue Tanner listening to sign supporters and opponents, as well as representatives of the City of Seattle and Seattle Public Schools. The city has approved the sign; neighbors facing Madison along 45th SW challenged that approval.
By Megan Sheppard
On the WSBeat, for West Seattle Blog
This edition of the WSBeat contains summaries written from reports on cases handled in the past several weeks by Southwest Precinct officers – generally cases that (usually) have not already appeared here in breaking-news coverage or West Seattle Crime Watch reports, but that might at least answer the question “what WERE all those police doing on my block?”
*Around 2:30 a.m. Tuesday, a citizen called 911 to report a suspicious vehicle lingering near Arbor Heights Elementary. Two people had exited the vehicle and disappeared behind some portable classrooms. Officers discovered that one man was wanted on a $10,000 misdemeanor warrant and booked him into King County Jail.
*On the afternoon of the 28th, a driver ran into three parked vehicles near 35th and Webster. He and his girlfriend were uncooperative and provided false names — perhaps because the driver was wanted on a no-bail felony escape warrant (extraditable from all fifty states). He was booked into King County Jail.
Four more summaries ahead:
(Live view from the west-facing WS Bridge camera; other cameras are on the WSB Traffic page)
Good morning! Two reminders and a look ahead – First, a road-work reminder; city crews will continue repaving the 1200 block of Alki Avenue SW. Second reminder – the I-90 bridge closes for the Seafair airshow 1:15 pm-2:40 pm today, tomorrow, and Sunday. Third, a look ahead to next week: Tuesday night into Wednesday morning (August 6-7), the Highway 99 Battery Street Tunnel will be closed overnight for work – southbound 10 pm-5 am, northbound approximately midnight-5 am (the actual start time will be 2 hours after the Mariners game ends).
1:47 PM UPDATE: Thanks to Tim for the tip – a spun-out van is on the outside edge of the crest of the eastbound high bridge – here’s an image grabbed from the camera a few minutes ago:
Remember that since it hasn’t rained for a while, the roads will be slick with oil and other material that’s soaked in since last time. (And even as we update this story, we hear someone losing traction as they round the corner near HQ …)
6:07 PM: Thanks to multiple tipsters for mentioning a crash that has affected the westbound bridge – though we can’t tell from available traffic cameras whether it still is; one car apparently wound up off the highway near Walking on Logs. Kevin says City Light was there when he went by. No injuries, judging by the absence of an SFD listing on the 911 log.
(First photo by Jason Grotelueschen; others by Patrick Sand)
Fiery finale for The Dusty 45s tonight, concluding a hot night – despite clouds and a bit of breeze – in the second week of this year’s Summer Concerts at Hiawatha!
Lots of fun for the little ones – even free facepainting (which will be offered again later in the series):
And the band played on:
Guitars on the sidelines, too, courtesy of Frank Gross and West Seattle’s own Thunder Road Guitars (WSB sponsor):
Once again this week, Merrill Gardens (also a WSB sponsor) brought coloring books for young artists:
Next Thursday night, it’s the duo Impossible Bird – 6:30 pm Thursday, August 8th, on the east lawn at Hiawatha (along Walnut Avenue, south of SW Lander, north of the east side of West Seattle High School).
We are in the “you can’t make omelets without breaking a few eggs” technical mode – that’s no excuse, but there’s really nothing else we can say about being offline for a few hours. Some people had trouble seeing the site earlier in the day too – and that has to do with the nature of the problem, which involved the ultimate destination you’re pointed to when you ask your computer or phone to take you here. As of right now, everything’s pointed to the correct place. It’s been a fairly quiet day, so you haven’t missed much, but again, we’re sorry – even on slow days, we work hard to have interesting information here, updated at least every few hours, so we’re behind now and we’ll be catching up on a few things overnight as a result. – Tracy & Patrick, WSB co-publishers
Keep in mind, this is basically a required, routine action, triggered by impending demolition/rebuild – as is similar consideration for Genesee Hill. Nonetheless, public notification is mandatory, and here it is, as just sent by the Department of Neighborhoods, which includes the Landmarks Board:
The Landmarks Preservation Board will consider landmark nomination for Arbor Heights Elementary School at 3701 SW 104th St. The meeting will be on Wednesday, September 4 at 3:30 p.m. in the Seattle Municipal Tower, 700 5th Avenue, 40th Floor in Room 4060.
The public is invited to attend the meeting and make comments.
Seattle Public Schools has new rules about school fundraisers, and they’ve stirred up some concern today. The citywide PTSA Council mentioned them briefly in a newsletter that went out this week:
Starting in the Fall 2013, Seattle Public Schools will take a 10% cut, up to $1000, for the use of school grounds if the fundraising activity takes place during school hours (read: Walk-A-Thons, etc). (We’re trying to think of it as a “use fee” for the space).
That was in turn forwarded to WSB by several outraged parents. So we asked SPS spokesperson Teresa Wippel about the rule change. She explains:
To comply with state law, Seattle Public Schools developed new procedures for school-based fundraising. If fundraisers occur during the school day and involve students (for example, a walkathon or readathon), we are required to ensure that students receive a portion of the proceeds. We worked with PTSA leadership during the past school year to create these procedures, which are aimed at making sure that our students retain a portion of the proceeds for events that they participate in. As a result, if a PTSA fundraiser is an activity that is co-sponsored with ASB, 10 percent – up to $1,500 – goes to the school’s ASB fund. Of course, the ASB fund may be used for many of the things the PTSA supports, such as field trips and sporting and social events.
If the activity is carried out in accordance with all three items listed below, it is a PTSA event; thus the PTSA retains all proceeds:
A) outside of regular school time (after school, evening or weekend)
B) the PTSA does the event planning, organizing, money-handling
C) the event is advertised as a PTSA fundraiser (i.e. Adams PTSA, Ballard Athletics Booster Club).
We also asked when this was approved by the School Board. Answer: It wasn’t – it’s an administrative action. Meantime, a commenter on Seattle Schools Community Forum pointed out that something similar came around three years ago – and was overturned shortly after coming to light.
That’s Larry Keller, the 62-year-old man killed in The Junction last Friday morning when his motorcycle collided with an SUV. Police have not yet released findings in the investigation. But Mr. Keller’s family wanted to thank the community for its condolences, and to “reach out to the driver of the SUV and let him know that we are grieving for him as well as my brother.” That driver was not seriously hurt. Meantime, near the California/Oregon crash site, there is a simple tribute to Mr. Keller:
His sister Lori told us about her brother: Lawrence John Keller was born September 8th, 1950, and grew up in West Seattle, graduating from WSHS. He was a real “people person,” Lori says, known for his loud, contagious laugh. He was a motorcycle and muscle-car enthusiast – the motorcycle he’s on in the photo above is not the one he was riding at the time of Friday’s crash; it was one of several that he owned, including vintage models. He worked in construction and general labor for most of his life. He is survived by sister Lorene Sutherland of Kent and nieces Misty E. Roberts of Issaquah and Camille E. Sutherland of Kent. Memorial plans are not yet finalized.
As West Seattle’s public STEM elementary school approaches the start of its second year, Seattle Public Schools is preparing to make decisions including a permanent home for that school. Two months ago, SPS went public with a preliminary proposal to house STEM in the current Schmitz Park Elementary, once it’s vacated in 2016, when the new Genesee Hill school is ready. This week, the STEM PTA announced two counterproposals, in advance of a round of meetings starting with one that the PTA’s executive board is convening next week: Move STEM to the Fairmount Park building when it reopens, expanded, in 2014, or keep it at Boren and expand it to K-8. The proposals are detailed in this letter, which PTA president Robin Graham shared with WSB on request after circulating it within the school community:
(If you can’t see the embedded document, get the PDF version here.) The K-8 idea has percolated for a while; yesterday, even before the STEM PTA went public with its letter, there were related discussions in this thread on the Seattle Schools Community Forum website. The district’s website has information here about what’s officially called the Enrollment Planning/Growth Boundaries process – including a community meeting planned at West Seattle High School on September 25th, before decisions are finalized later this fall.
UPDATE: As noted in comments, the meeting on Monday is now at Boren, NOT SW Library, so that more participation can be accommodated.
Just in case the clouds really do persist through the day and into the evening – there’s a color splash from last night’s sunset, thanks to Lynn on Alki. Now, a look ahead to the rest of the first of August:
PRESCHOOL STORY TIME: Today at 11, bring preschool-age kids to the Southwest Branch Library for story time! (35th/Henderson)
COMMUNITY ORCHARD OF WEST SEATTLE: Every Thursday this summer, 5-7 pm, drop by for a work party and/or tour at COWS, on the north side of the South Seattle Community College (WSB sponsor) campus – details in the calendar listing.
THE DUSTY 45s AT HIAWATHA: Week 2 of the Admiral Neighborhood Association-presented Summer Concerts at Hiawatha; tonight, the stars are The Dusty 45s – free, 6:30 pm, east lawn of Hiawatha Community Center (Walnut Avenue side, south of SW Lander), with dinner available (bring $ if interested) via the annual benefit barbecue raising money for scholarships to Hiawatha programs. P.S. If the weather gets worse instead of better, the concert could be moved into the gym – check WSB late in the day for updates.
SHAKESPEARE IN THE PARK: Greenstage presents “Midsummer Night’s Dream,” free, 7 pm at Lincoln Park. (Where in the park, you ask? From the GS website: “Our performance space is located in a meadow just SW the sports fields and tennis courts.”)
LOTS OF NIGHTLIFE – with tonight’s listings on the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar including Duos Lounge, Skylark Café and Club, The Cask, Feedback Lounge (WSB sponsor), OutWest Bar, Terrible Beauty, and The Benbow Room.
(Live view from the west-facing WS Bridge camera; other cameras are on the WSB Traffic page)
Welcome to August, and another murky morning, with the forecast including a chance of showers. Today’s road-work alert: City crews are scheduled to start a two-day repaving project in the 1200 block of Alki Avenue SW.