West Seattle, Washington
DRIVE-BY CAR PROWLING: Shaun reports:
At roughly 1:28 am my wife witnessed this van driving down our street and stopping and opening car doors. Driver didn’t get out of van, just reached out of window to check if doors were open. We called it in, and followed at a distance. Once it stopped we got a picture of the van.
The License plate is: 01508 or 10508 – it was a specialty plate.
Shaun didn’t mention what part of West Seattle this happened in – we’re following up. (Update – Shaun says this was in Morgan Junction, and that they’ve since been told by police that the van was found and impounded, but no arrests so far.)
BROKEN WINDOW: In Admiral, two people reported seeing a broken window on a Jeep parked in the PCC Natural Markets-West Seattle (WSB sponsor) parking lot this morning, and “some contents” strewn outside.
And in the day’s biggest broken-glass incident:
ATM-THEFT AFTERMATH: We followed up with South Seattle College (WSB sponsor) about the considerable damage done by the ATM theft early this morning. SSC spokesperson Ty Swenson told WSB that the thief/thieves “seriously damaged” an external and internal set of entrance doorways made of glass. The north entrance of the Jerry Brockey Student Center was closed for several hours, and the missing sections of glass and door frame were boarded up:
By late morning, Swenson said they “were able to open the undamaged set of doors at the north entrance, so people can access the Brockey Center from the north. Load bearing pillars at the entrance were not damaged. Our facilities department is currently assessing the damage and working with a local glass supplier to get a bid. We do not have a solid timeline on the repair or cost at this time.” While they don’t have surveillance video of the actual theft, he said, they do have video of the truck that was involved, and we hope to have that for a Crime Watch update tomorrow.
Thanks to Nicole Sipila from the Chief Sealth International High School PTSA for sharing the news that the CSIHS Green Team has been “recognized as a 2015-16 Conservation Champion for their work to get water-bottle-filling stations installed in our school. We should have quotes for the work (this) week and we hope to see them in place before the 2016-17 school year. Great job!” Teacher Noah Zeichner, who provided the photo above from a school-board meeting last month, says the project has been in the works for two years, “when members realized they could reduce the use of plastic water bottles in their school if students had the ability to fill up reusable water bottles. … Not only did they get the green light to purchase filling stations at Chief Sealth, additionally they convinced the school board to pursue a $200,000 grant for filling stations in every single Seattle Public School.”
Nicole also shared this district-produced PDF with photos and profiles of other schools recognized around the city this year, including, from our area, Alki Elementary, Arbor Heights Elementary, Concord International, Pathfinder K-8, and West Seattle High School. Congratulations to all!
6:52 PM: We hope you won’t need this info, but in case you do, just tweeted by Seattle Police: “We are currently experiencing technical difficulties with the nonemergency line. Please call 206-583-2111 or 911 if you need assistance.”
11:18 PM: As of about an hour ago, the problem is fixed, SPD tweeted, so you can use the non-emergency line again – 206-625-5011 – if you need to. But if something is happening NOW, police always urge, call 911.
Though the old location of the West Seattle YMCA (WSB sponsor) preschool has been demolished as the Y gets ready for Thursday’s groundbreaking on its expansion, it’s still offering preschool, and has announced an expansion. The new location for the Y’s preschool is the former E.C. Hughes Elementary in Sunrise Heights, and the Y is adding four classes of “quality and affordable
halffull-day, year-round child care for children ages 2.5 to 5 years old between the hours of 7:00 am and 6:00 pm.” The program is described as “values-based with an emphasis on building self-reliance through our core values: Caring, Honesty, Respect and Responsibility.” Teachers are experienced and professional, and the curriculum includes enrichment activities such as Spanish, swim lessons, cooking classes, and music time. Open enrollment is under way, including tonight during an open house that starts shortly, 5 pm-6:30 pm. EC Hughes is at 7740 34th SW; if you can’t stop by tonight, contact Sissi Kamalii at 206 201 0696, firstname.lastname@example.org, or Emilia Varga at 206 399 5704, email@example.com.
(UPDATED 4:26 PM with information we requested on project’s cost)
1:12 PM: If you got into trouble somewhere on the West Seattle Bridge – would you be able to clearly describe your location to a 911 dispatcher? SDOT is about to install signs that it hopes will help more people answer “yes,” resulting in most incidents clearing more quickly: The bridge will be broken into nine “zones,” each with signage that will be installed this weekend. Read the full announcement ahead:Read More
It’s going to be a West Seattle Outdoor Movies season to remember! As reported here recently, the mega-popular series of free Saturday night movies is moving at the end of this summer, so you’ll watch the first five movies in the Hotwire Online Coffeehouse (California/Genesee; WSB sponsor) courtyard as always, and then the sixth in the new Triangle Festival Street by the West Seattle YMCA (WSB sponsor), where the movies all will be shown next year. Now … this year’s lineup! Thanks for your suggestions. Drumroll … it all starts a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away:
July 16th: “Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens” (featuring pre-show Star Wars trivia)
July 23rd – “Monty Python and The Holy Grail”
July 30th – “School of Rock”
August 6th – “Skyfall” (featuring pre-show James Bond trivia)
August 13th – “The Lego Movie”
August 20th – “Princess Bride” (first movie in the Festival Street by the Y)
(The titles are linked to the movies’ trailers.) More soon about what to expect each night – but the basics are: It’s free, though you’re encouraged to bring money for concessions and raffles benefiting local nonprofits; the movies start at dusk, which means a different start time each week. The movies are made possible not just by presenters and volunteers’ hard work but also by the support of many local businesses who sign on as sponsors, including us at WSB. See you at the movies!
Nine months ago, we reported that the proprietors of Capitol Hill’s Chungee’s Drink ‘N Eat were seeking to rezone and remodel their Morgan Junction home in order to convert it into another branch of their popular restaurant and bar. Rezoning requires City Council approval, and today’s Land Use Information Bulletin brings word that the official comment period on this part of the project is now open for two weeks – here’s the official notice. The rezoning proposal for the site, 6921 California SW, is the same as it was last August – seeking a “contract rezone” from Lowrise 2 to Lowrise 2 – Residential Commercial, the same zoning as parcels to the south, as noted in our report last August. “Contract rezone” means it’s related to a specific proposal, not just a general designation change. If you’re interested in commenting, you can use this form linked from today’s notice; deadline is June 13th. (King County Assessor’s Office photo)
(Recent view of West Seattle and beyond by Long Bach Nguyen)
Quick look at what’s on the calendar for today/tonight:
FREE LEGAL HELP: Two sessions at the Senior Center of West Seattle – 2-4 pm (info here) and 7-9 pm (info here) – both require appointments and each has a different number to call, so follow the respective links to get it. (California SW & SW Oregon)
JUSTIN KAUSAL-HAYES: Live music at Salty’s on Alki (WSB sponsor), “acoustic hits of the last 4 decades.” 5-8 pm, no cover. (1936 Harbor SW)
BILLY JOE & THE RC’S: Live at Parliament Tavern every Tuesday, 8 pm, featuring Billy Joe Huels and Robin Cady of The Dusty 45s, along with Rod Cook. No cover. (4210 SW Admiral Way)
SINGER-SONGWRITER SHOWCASE: 9 pm every Tuesday at Shadowland. (California SW/SW Oregon)
THERE’S MORE … on our complete calendar.
(Click any view for a close-up; more cameras on the WSB Traffic page)
6:39 AM: Good morning! Welcome to the first day after the long Memorial Day weekend and the last day of May. We’re launching a bit late because we’ve been out covering the case of the stolen-and-recovered ATM. In terms of getting around, here’s what you need to know for starters:
*The Fauntleroy Expressway seismic-cushion work bridge closures resume tonight, 9 pm-5 am, with westbound traffic exiting at Delridge and eastbound traffic detoured to entrances other than 35th/Fauntleroy.
*Starting today, sewer repairs will block part of 35th SW between Juneau and Raymond, as announced last week.
*Also scheduled to start today, Seattle Parks work to fix the handrail along a stretch of Constellation Park/Charles Richey Viewpoint on Beach Drive – the work isn’t in the road but vehicles and crews could cause some congestion.
5:19 AM: As day breaks, police are following the trail of a stolen ATM. The cash machine was taken from South Seattle College (WSB sponsor) on Puget Ridge a few hours ago.
5:29 AM: The investigation has led police to a north Arbor Heights neighborhood where they have just recovered it.
5:45 AM: Police have pointed us to the backyard of a house at 39th SW and SW 97th, regarding where it was recovered – they say it’s the large white item in the background of our photo. And if you’re in AH, that’s a TV helicopter. No arrest(s) reported so far.
6:09 AM: Just talked to SPD spokesperson Det. Mark Jamieson, who says officers are waiting on a search warrant before going in and actually taking possession of the stolen ATM. He says he can’t yet confirm what led police to the house; discussion we’d been monitoring for hours via scanner indicated it was a satellite tracking device, relatively new technology developed as ATM theft started to spike.
6:53 AM: Apparently at least one TV helicopter also has been over the theft scene on Puget Ridge, too. We expect a bit more information from police later this morning and will update when that’s in.
11:38 AM: And here’s that information! Just posted to SPD Blotter by Jonah Spangenthal-Lee:
Police recovered a stolen ATM from the backyard of a West Seattle home Tuesday after a thief in a pickup truck smashed his way into a college building and made off with a safe filled with cash.
Officers responded to South Seattle College in the 6000 block of 16th Avenue Southwest just before 2 AM after receiving reports of a break-in. At the scene, they found someone had broken through locked gate and driven a pickup truck through a glass door on campus to get to an ATM. After dismantling the cash machine, the thief loaded the ATM’s heavy-duty cash safe into their truck and fled.
Police found the unopened safe in the yard of a home in the 3900 block of Southwest 97th Street, where robbery detectives later detained and interviewed one male resident. Detectives released the man and continue to investigate the case.
Detectives are still looking for a white Chevrolet pickup truck with a crew cab, believed to have been used in the break-in at the college.
If you have any information about this case, please contact the SPD Southwest Precinct Burglary Unit at 206-233-2623.
Here’s a closer look at the item in the yard that we now know was the ATM’s safe:
Thinking about a block party for this year’s Night Out, now two months away (Tuesday, August 2nd)? The city Department of Neighborhoods invites you to apply for a grant from the Small Sparks Fund. Community groups can ask for up to $1,000 to pay for “Night Out activities such as outreach materials, cultural entertainment, music, food, and kids’ activities.” You need to register in the city’s application system, and then you have until July 1st to apply. Find out more here.
Story, video, and photos by Tracy Record and Patrick Sand
West Seattle Blog co-publishers
“Americans must remember that freedom isn’t free.”
That reminder from American Legion Post 160 commander Keith Hughes, at this afternoon’s West Seattle Memorial Day ceremony at Forest Lawn (WSB sponsor) in High Point. Here’s our video of the entire ceremony, unedited:
Hughes, an Army veteran, exhorted the 50-plus on hand also to remember that those who gave their lives for our freedom “are not just statistics – they are real people … with real names … real faces … real people.”
All around the site of the half-hour ceremony near the cemetery’s flagpole, the “real names” were there to see, on plaques atop graves marked with flags and crosses placed by members of Boy Scout Troop 284, who also assisted in the ceremony. We stopped to take note afterward:
The half-hour ceremony urged not only honor for the dead, but help for the living – the veterans who made it home alive: “Join us, the American Legion, the Veterans of Foreign Wars, Disabled American Veterans, and many other groups … help us make a difference,” exhorted Hughes. “Remember our fallen once a year is just not enough. Consider what you can do to help those who have come home.” (The West Seattle Veterans’ Center recently reopened at Post 160’s hall in The Triangle.)
Both Hughes (above) and VFW Post 2713 commander Ray Fairbank (below), who described himself as a Navy veteran from Vietnam and an Air Force veteran from Desert Storm, spoke of Memorial Day’s history, going back to its origins as Decoration Day a century and a half ago, finally taking its current name in the ’60s.
Fairbank, also the VFW’s state chaplain, urged people to behold the American flag and consider what it represents – “white for purity … red stripes of courage … blue for tranquility … the sacred symbol of freedom.” And he drew audible cries from some in the crowd as he read a wrenching essay from Reader’s Digest, “A Fallen Soldier’s Final Salute.”
Hughes recalled a U.S. Marine lost in Okinawa in the 1940s, and an Army specialist lost in Afghanistan this decade – different hometowns, different genders, same courage, he observed.
Along with their words, Ross Hauck sang stirring renditions of the National Anthem as well as “America the Beautiful” and “God Bless America” – you can hear for yourself in our video of the ceremony, which concluded after echoing “Taps,” a release of white doves, and Troop 284 retiring the colors.
Though they were said toward the ceremony’s start, words from the invocation by chaplain and veteran Kelly Wadsworth (above) also seemed fitting in conclusion, a reminder that “cessation of war is not the same as enduring peace.”
After the somber observance, everyone was invited to a reception at Post 160’s Triangle headquarters; some headed out, some lingered, with a spirited song by the Duwamish Jazz Band:
The flags continued to wave in the breeze, honoring those “real names, real people” who had gone before.
One more state high-school championship to note: Just across the water, Vashon Island is celebrating its high school‘s first-ever 1A baseball state championship. Islanders are so excited, they welcomed the team with a parade, seen in the video above, shared with WSB by West Seattle resident Joel Schoenberg, whose son Sam Schoenberg (in the photo below) is a VHS player and was a star of the championship game:
Joel recaps: “Sam (former West Seattle Pony and Peewee player), is the leadoff hitter and outfielder for Vashon, went 3 for 3, with 3 runs scored and 2 RBI on a triple and 2 singles (and a steal to boot) in the championship game and was named Player of the Game.” The Vashon Pirates took the title by beating defending state champ Hoquiam 10-6 on Saturday in Yakima.
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
For all the noise-making over the CMA CGM Benjamin Franklin‘s Port of Seattle visit three months ago, it seemed barely a whisper was heard when news emerged three weeks ago that the largest cargo ship to visit the U.S. won’t make cross-Pacific runs after all.
But, Northwest Seaport Alliance deputy CEO Kurt Beckett told the West Seattle Transportation Coalition‘s May meeting, expanding the capacity of Terminal 5 in West Seattle is still a must.
Beckett’s visit to the WSTC last Thursday night was supposed to be related to the T-5 project’s Draft Environmental Impact Statement, published by the port for public comment. The official deadline for that is June 21st, with two public meetings next week. But the discussion sailed beyond project specifics – which Beckett said he couldn’t discuss much anyway during the comment period – and into the waters of how “fluid” the seaport business is right now.
1:21 PM: Police are in North Delridge right now, investigating reported gunfire. A texter told us about it just after 1 pm, saying they had called 911 and were told others had too. No victim reported, but police have been searching an alley west of Delridge Way, between Edmunds and Hudson, and other nearby areas including a stairway along Genesee.
1:54 PM: We went to the area in hopes of finding officers to ask what if anything they’d found, but they apparently had moved on. However, we did talk to a lieutenant here at Forest Lawn, where the Memorial Day ceremony is about to start; he says the initial report was someone with a revolver, in which case no shell casings would have been left behind.
And our second wrapup on this past weekend’s state 3A track and field championships is from West Seattle High School – the report and photos are courtesy of head track/field coach Will Harrison:
The West Seattle Track Team concluded their season with a great performance at the Washington State 3A Track and Field Championships at Mount Tahoma High School, which began on Thursday, May 26th, and concluded on Saturday. The boys finished 12th and the girls finished 14th in the team standings.
The girls’ highlight of the meet was Lani Taylor capping off her undefeated senior season at the 400 Meter Dash with the State Championship in a winning time of 55.74 seconds. She also finished 3rd in the 200 Meter Dash (25.40 seconds) and 5th in the 100 Meter Dash (12.86) – both of which were won by Chief Sealth Senior Assa Kaba. Taylor ends her Wildcat Track career with school records in all three sprint events and plans to compete for Seattle Pacific University next year.
Also competing for West Seattle were school-record holders Natalie Fuller (15th Long Jump, 12th Triple Jump) and Maggie Cooper (15th in Pole Vault). Metro League Champion Lexi Ioane took 11th in Shot Put. Fuller will join the University of Washington crew team next year, and Ioane will likely compete in Basketball and Track at Adams State University in Colorado.
On the boys side, West Seattle left with runner-up finishes in both hurdle races. Senior Chaaka Trahan ran a time of 14.79 seconds to take 2nd in the 110 Meter Hurdles. Sophomore Cass Elliott, coming off a breakthrough performance in Friday’s 300 Meter Hurdle prelim in which he earned the No. 1 seed for the final (after coming in to the meet with the No. 5 seed), wound up second in the final on Saturday with a time of 39.10 seconds. Both hurdlers had busy weekends: Trahan, disappointed after a 14th place showing in the 300m Hurdles prelim, bounced to place 3rd in the Long Jump with a personal best of 23 feet, 2.5 inches. Elliott finished 18th in the 110m Hurdles prelim and anchored West Seattle’s 4 x 400 Meter relay on Thursday night, along with Rylee Farrison, Adam Wayss, and Miles Hairston.
Event-by-event results from the championships, held in Tacoma this past Thursday through Saturday, are here.
On Saturday, we reported on two local athletes winning state 3A track/field championships. Today, we have wrapups on their schools’ overall achievements at state, starting with Chief Sealth International High School:
Thanks to Nicole Sipila for sharing the photo of Sealth’s state track/field participants – Elijah Jackson, Quinn Wiley, Assa Kaba, Chole Myers, Mia Hyde – and the results:
*Assa Kaba is State Champion in the 100m and 200m
*Quinn Wiley placed 6th in the State in the 300m hurdles
*Mia Hyde placed 10th in the State in Discus
*Elijah Jackson placed 13th in the Triple Jump
*The Girls 4X200m Relay Team placed 3rd in the State!
Event-by-event results from the championships, held in Tacoma this past Thursday through Saturday, are here.
11:56 AM: Thanks to the texter who tipped us to this: Seattle City Light is investigating a power outage in the Westwood area. Its map shows 44 customers (homes/businesses) without electricity, north of Roxbury and east of 27th SW. No cause is listed yet, but the texter reported hearing an “explosion” – no Seattle Fire dispatches in the area, though.
3:08 PM: Just checked – still out, after more than three hours. SCL’s map attributes the outage to “equipment failure” and guesstimates that power will be restored by early evening.
6:41 PM: According to the SCL map, the power’s back on.
Thanks to volunteers of all ages, led by West Seattle-based Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 2713, The Junction’s flags are up in honor of Memorial Day.
Between now and then, you’ll find local veterans’ groups at the Forest Lawn (6701 30th SW; WSB sponsor) Memorial Day ceremony at 2 pm, all welcome.
(Thanks to Vicki for the photo from Troop 284’s volunteer work at Forest Lawn last week)
TRAFFIC/TRANSIT: No regular traffic report today because of the holiday but you can check local cams here. … NO bridge closure tonight because of the holiday … Metro buses are on a Sunday schedule … The West Seattle Water Taxi is on a Sunday schedule … Sound Transit buses are on a Sunday schedule … Washington State Ferries‘ Fauntleroy-Vashon-Southworth run is on its regular weekday schedule.
OTHER HOLIDAY NOTES: Seattle Parks explains here what’s open and what’s not … Schools are closed … Seattle Public Library branches are closed … It’s a U.S. Postal Service holiday … And if you’re going to a neighborhood with on-street pay stations/metered parking, know that this is a city “parking holiday.”
What’s happening today/tonight:
HELP WITH JUNCTION FLAGS: VFW Post 2713 can use your help putting up and taking down the Stars and Stripes in the West Seattle Junction – meet outside Cupcake Royale at California/Alaska by 8:50 am for the morning help and by 4:50 pm for the evening removal.
HIGHLAND PARK SPRAYPARK, DAY 3: If the forecast holds, this could be the first good day for playing in the water. 11 am-8 pm. (1100 SW Cloverdale)
COLMAN POOL, FINAL DAY OF FIRST PRE-SEASON WEEKEND: Swim sessions noon-7 pm at the city-run outdoor saltwater pool on the shore at Lincoln Park – here’s the schedule. (8011 Fauntleroy Way SW)
TOUR THE ALKI POINT LIGHTHOUSE: 1 pm-4 pm (last group admitted at 3:40 pm), this year’s first weekend of free tours at Alki Point Lighthouse concludes. (Alki SW/Beach Drive SW)
MEMORIAL DAY CEREMONY: Honor the reason for Memorial Day by attending the traditional ceremony presented by American Legion Post 160 and community partners this afternoon at Forest Lawn (WSB sponsor), 2 pm, all welcome. (6701 30th SW)
SILENT MOVIE COMEDIES, ACCOMPANIED, AT KENYON HALL: 7:30 pm at Kenyon Hall, Donald Soson is back to play along with silent-movie comedies – see our listing for info on the show and how to get your ticket. And when you’re there, don’t miss the root-beer floats! (7904 35th SW)
MONDAY QUIZ: 7:30 pm, all ages, at The Skylark – with prizes! (3803 Delridge Way SW)
Two West Seattle Crime Watch reader reports so far this weekend:
HIT-AND-RUN ON VIDEO: Multiple angles of surveillance video sent by a reader show a pickup truck sideswiping at least one vehicle at 16th/Henderson around 3:10 pm. (The last angle shows it most clearly.) If you have any information, the SPD incident number, as shown at the start of the video, is 2016-188993.
MAILBOX VANDALISM: A texter sent three photos of multiple-unit mailboxes hit by tagging vandalism in the 5900 block of California SW. All three were different styles, sizes, words, and colors. As we replied, police suggest photographing tagging/graffiti vandalism and uploading the photos with an online report – as explained here – or you can use the Find It Fix It app.
(King County Assessor photos for 6537 35th SW & 6541 35th SW)
Checking the city files to see what came in just before the holiday weekend, we’ve found new early-stage site plans for two parcels just south of the Upper Morgan business district on the west side of 35th SW. They are filed for 6537 35th SW and 6541 35th SW, to replace two 90+-year-old houses. Both lots are zoned NC2-40, as is that entire block, all the way to the next street south, SW Holly. The files show almost-identical site plans for the two lots, each with two live-work units fronting on 35th, four townhouses behind them, and five parking spaces on the alley behind that. Documents also indicate these sites will go through the “streamlined design review” process, which means no public meetings, but there will be a chance for public comment, once the official notices go out – watch for the sites to show up here.
With this year’s commencement ceremony just a few weeks away, we’ve been asked to share a donation request to ensure that all West Seattle High School seniors can participate in this year’s ceremony. Volunteer coordinator Amy Doll has asked the WSHS community if any of last year’s graduates would consider donating the robes they wore in the commencement ceremony: “I have several students that aren’t walking because of the cost of the robes. The PTSA has a budget to help students but I would like to be able to let kids keep their Hat, Stole, and Tassel. I can do that if I have donated robes.” If you can donate one, please drop it off in the school office, which is open weekdays until 3 pm (though not tomorrow, because of the holiday).
P.S. One parent tells us they’re also welcoming used prom dresses. If you have a question about these donation requests, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. (Prom is next Friday, June 4th; graduation is June 21st.)