West Seattle, Washington
Reminder for Washington State Ferries users – a fare increase kicks in on Thursday (May 1st), same day the peak-season vehicle surcharge takes effect. You can check fares for any date using this lookup tool on the WSF website – for example, if you’re riding between Fauntleroy and Vashon as a walk-on tomorrow, it’s $5.10, and then $5.20 starting Thursday; a standard vehicle and driver on the same trip will pay $17.25 tomorrow, $22.05 Thursday.
(Reader photo substituted for original WSB photo of police cars on Fairmount)
ORIGINAL REPORT, 7:06 PM SUNDAY: Lots of questions about a big police response in the north West Seattle area. Thanks to the tipsters who told us it was focused in the Fairmount Ravine area; our crew has just spoken there with police. They say it started with a reported burglary. They tracked the suspect to an area near the top (south end) of Fairmount Ravine and pursued the suspect, at which time the suspect brandished a weapon at officers. They believe it was a knife. They subsequently used “non-lethal means” – reportedly, a Taser – to stop him. The big response was when they called for backup.
(Added: Photo texted by reader)
The suspect is in custody.
ADDED MONDAY MORNING: We asked SPD for more details last night and they’re now available this morning, via SPD Blotter. According to that writeup, the suspect is a 45-year-old man. The burglary happened in the 2200 block of Fairmount Avenue, and the suspect had been “living in one of the victim’s vehicles outside the home.” The man threatened police with a dagger when they found him and the vehicle a few blocks away; even after they Tasered him, leading to him dropping the dagger, he “got back up and charged at officers, who were able to take the man into custody after a brief struggle. Neither the suspect nor the officers were seriously injured.” Police say they found two of the victim’s debit cards in the suspect’s possession and a receipt showing that he had pawned a camera belonging to the victim.
A memorable West Seattle neighbor named Vern Christensen is gone but not forgotten. Cindy Craig shared photos and the story of how neighbors and friends gathered to remember him a few rainy/sunny Sundays ago:
On Sunday, March 30, about 40 friends (several of them 4-legged) gathered at the traffic island at 40th Av. SW and SW Juneau to remember their good neighbor, Vern Christensen, who passed away on March 15.
Most days during the past 24 years if you drove by the grassy knoll there on the corner previously known as ‘Weed Island’ you were likely to see Vern taking his daily constitutional, keeping a benevolent eye on the neighborhood between Fauntleroy and California and Brandon and Morgan. If it was raining, you would probably see him clearing the storm drain with his trusty rake because the city had asked citizens to help. Long before the West Seattle Blog was the ‘go to’ source for any news in Fairmount Springs, Vern was who you thought to ask first.
Vern was a farm boy from Flasher, North Dakota, born during the Great Depression in 1932. He always seemed to embrace those rural values of knowing your neighbors and taking the time to stop and share a story. He knew what the value of community was and he would have been pleased to see the diverse group of people that he helped weave together gathering to celebrate our common thread at the newly renamed ‘Vern Island.’
A native currant was planted on the island in Vern’s honor, and the Golden Rake and its duty to keep the drain cleared was transferred to another resident of 40th Av. S.W., Vern’s close friend Paul Sureddin:
And for a little while on a rainy Sunday afternoon in March, the sun came out just long enough for Vern Christensen’s neighbors to take one more walk around Vern’s beloved Fairmount Springs and remember a man who reminded us every day in his unassuming way what it was to be part of a community.
We will miss him.
2:26 PM: Just a heads up – the stoplights on Alaska at Fauntleroy and at 42nd are flashing red. Remember that means you need to treat them like 4-way-stop intersections. Thanks for the texts about this!
8:46 PM: Thanks for the updates in comments; we just checked both lights within the past 20 minutes and they are both STILL out. Documented via short Instagram clip – here’s Fauntleroy/Alaska:
We will check early in the morning, too, because if they are not fixed by the commute, could be trouble.
10:10 PM: In addition to updates in the comments (thanks!), we were just out on an errand and noticed that while Fauntleroy/Alaska is working now, California/Fauntleroy and California/Graham are blinking.
Earlier this month, AAUW (American Association of University Women), Seattle Branch, honored girls from 9 Seattle area high schools for their achievement in the areas of Math, Science, and Technology. The four girls from West Seattle were (left to right in photo): Chief Sealth IHS: Nicole Carter (Science) and Thu Trinh (Math), and from West Seattle HS: Nafisa Ali (Science) and Noriel Sarquilla (Math).
AAUW promotes equity for women and girls through advocacy, education, research, and philanthropy. Our Seattle Branch held its 14th Annual Scholar Recognition Program on April 9th, recognizing senior girls from nine Seattle high schools for their achievement in the areas of Math, Science, and Technology. Dr. Deborah Jensen, President/CEO of Woodland Park Zoo was the guest speaker at the event. The Scholar Recognition Program is all about encouraging more young women to become interested in STEM careers by honoring their achievements to date with a goal of encouraging better representation of women in these fields in the future.
It’s on – rain or shine as usual! Dozens and dozens of types of items – see the list here – are being accepted, for free, at the twice-yearly drop-off Fauntleroy Church Recycle Roundup, with 1 Green Planet on site, filling trucks with the types of recyclables you just can’t put out on your curb, until 3 pm today. Drive/ride/walk up, drop off, move on. (If there’s a line when you get there, please be patient, urges this commenter.) And one more time, since this is a change from past Recycle Roundups, we’ll remind you that they’re not taking TVs – but they ARE taking more than 65 other types of items. The church is at 9140 California SW, but you can’t get there by just driving south from the California straightaway – here’s a map; heading eastbound, it’s uphill from the ferry dock, or westbound, just take Barton, which curves to (briefly) become California SW by Fauntleroy Schoolhouse (which is across the street from the church).
College can be costly. Here’s potential help: The Rotary Club of West Seattle is offering scholarship money again this year. Here’s the announcement:
Continuing Education of our young people is such an important resource that every year the Rotary of West Seattle awards Scholarships to two or three graduating West Seattle Seniors towards their college education.
The deadline for applications is fast approaching, so if you know a deserving West Seattle Senior please visit our website to fill out the application. It is open to any senior student in the West Seattle area.
Please e-mail email@example.com for an application.
Ahead, the requirements and details:
We’ve answered a few inquiries about King County Sheriff’s Office and Medical Examiner vehicles/personnel at the Fauntleroy ferry dock Saturday evening, and in retrospect should have mentioned this here while it was happening: They were investigating a crash that killed a motorcycle rider on north Vashon and closed Vashon Highway for a few hours. KCSO told the News-Tribune that the northbound rider apparently was hit from behind while waiting to make a left turn.
(Another fabulous Alki bald-eagle closeup by Gary Jones)
Good morning! Possibilities for your Sunday, from the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar:
RECYCLE ROUNDUP: Less than a week after Earth Day, you get the twice-annual chance to go to the Fauntleroy Church parking lot to do the kind of recycling you just can’t do at curbside. As we reminded again last night, no TVs! Here again is the list of what 1 Green Planet will and will not take – free but if you appreciate the opportunity, you will have the chance to make a free-will donation to the church’s Green Committee, which organizes this event. (9140 California SW)
WEST SEATTLE FARMERS’ MARKET: 10 am-2 pm as always. (44th/Alaska)
VOLUNTEERS NEEDED: Charell at Firefly Café and Creperie says the new Junction Church across the street is putting up its third Little Free Library today and, “If anyone would like to help out, they could use some volunteers. They are meeting at 10:00 a.m. at the church. Should be done around noonish.” The church is across the street from her café. (4157 California SW)
MEET THE INAUGURAL POET: At High Point Library, 11 am, meet Richard Blanco and join in a discussion with the writer and other readers about his memoir, “For All of Us, One Today: An Inaugural Poet’s Journey.” Details in our calendar listing. (35th/Raymond)
LIVE MUSIC AT C & P: C & P Coffee Company (WSB sponsor) presents David Grixoni and Paul Luczak with “the coffeehouse sound.” (5612 California SW)
VENDOR FAIR: Local artists/entrepreneur selling their wares at Mind Unwind in The Admiral District, 4:30-7 pm. (2206 California SW)
First indecent-exposure case we’ve heard of since January – e-mailed late Saturday night by a reader in North Admiral:
We just filed a police report because my 11-year-old daughter and her 10-year-old friend were bike riding this afternoon at about 4:30 near 44th Ave. SW and Sunset Ave. SW and experienced an incident of lewd conduct. A man who looked to be in his late 20s, dark hair, dark skin tones, was naked in the back seat of a black SUV. He opened the door, exposing himself to the girls. The girls left the scene and were unharmed but we were of course very concerned.
(UPDATED SUNDAY NIGHT with more photos)
As previewed in our daily highlights list, Saturday was a big day for cleanups – and we have photos from all five of the stairway cleanups that were among 15 citywide. Above, we stopped by Delridge/Myrtle as site captain Craig Rankin (left) started rallying volunteers around 9 am. The next four photos are courtesy of West Seattleites Jake and Cathy Jaramillo, “Seattle Stairways Walks“ authors, who led the effort with the sponsorship of Feet First. Further north on Delridge, the cleanup was part of the spring-cleaning event organized by Lisa Taylor-Whitley (below left) with the North Delridge Neighborhood Council:
Further west on Genesee, at 49th, here’s the aftermath of volunteers’ hard work:
Further north on 49th, at Hanford, here’s the crew:
And finally, it’s site captain Janet Jones smiling while working at Carroll and 58th PL SW.
Seattle has 650 stairways in all, the Jaramillos point out on their website.
ADDED SUNDAY NIGHT: Three more photos from Craig @ Delridge/Myrtle, plus a report:
Thanks to the dozen volunteers who worked with 4 Parks employees on the Delridge and Myrtle stairway. (‘Before’ photo:)
We removed about 500 square feet of blackberries, moved 5 yards of much and a bunch of trash. (‘After’ photo:)
Great local turnout.
(Pictured: Mark, Ryan, and Jackson Colby from Puget Ridge)