West Seattle, Washington
West Seattle’s historical murals can’t be taken for granted. So far just this year, one’s been removed without warning; another’s been defaced with vandalism so big it would take thousands to fix. The quarter-century-old murals are fragile treasures, to say the least. Thursday, during this month’s West Seattle Art Walk, you’re invited to learn about them during two short free walking tours of the murals in The Junction.
These photos are from earlier this spring, when we went along on a sort of proto-version of the tour, with Art Walk committee members and Southwest Seattle Historical Society executive director Clay Eals, who will be the leader tomorrow night and has published this invitation on the SWSHS website.
In The Junction, the murals range north to south from the refurbished Hi-Yu Parade scene on the side of the Post Office (top photo) to the scene facing the parking lot off the west side of California just north of Edmunds, meant to mirror what you’d see if you stepped just a bit to the east from there:
Even if you’ve read the plaques next to most of the murals, you’ll learn something tomorrow night – like their Easter eggs, the tributes, the inspiration. Meet at Hotwire Online Coffeehouse (4410 California SW; WSB sponsor) right before the tours start at 6 and 7:30, and check out other Art Walk venues before/after if you have the time!
This Friday night, a local youth group invites you to help do a good deed for the tiniest members of our community. Here’s how:
West Seattle Rainbow Assembly #18 will be hosting a community baby shower on June 10th at 6 pm for the benefit of the Pediatric Interim Care Center. There will be a potato bar, games and dessert. Please come and meet the members of WS Rainbow and help out a worthy cause.
The baby shower will be held at the Alki Masonic Center located at 4736 40th Ave SW. Please enter through the doors on the parking-lot level.
PICC is a center that cares for babies born drug-exposed and medically fragile. A list of items that are on their wishlist include: hand sanitizer; cotton/terry sleepers with snap fronts (size small & medium) in white or pastel colors; disposable diapers (size small or medium); antibacterial soap; latex/vinyl gloves (medium & large; powered & non-powdered); Johnson’s Baby Powder with Cornstarch; Johnson’s baby shampoo; and cash donations are also welcome.
There is a list of items which are also needed on an occasional basis found on their website that do not relate directly to the care of the babies (i.e. bleach, toilet paper, Kleenex, etc)
We would welcome your donations if you are not able to attend. This event counts towards the girls’ community service hours and brings them a lot of joy. Please attend!
Questions? E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
Since its opening, a community tradition has grown – toys kept at the park for young visitors to share.
This afternoon, all but a few of those toys are gone.
Attention: Seattle Parks and Recreation Jesus Aguirre, Superintendent Christopher Williams, Deputy Superintendent
In the last month, there has been a mass exodus of toys from West Seattle’s Ercolini Park – two pick-ups in the last two weeks! We’re heartbroken and our children miss their toys!
After the first removal, parents rallied and donated toys for the use of hundreds of toddlers and children in our community. The large majority of them were taken by the City this morning. All of the push carts are gone. We’re left with a few tricycles and other toys that the littlest community members aren’t old enough to play with. We’re told a neighbor has filed a complaint, leading the Department of Parks and Recreation to take action. With no means through which to negotiate with the neighbor, we’re asking you to please also take into account the wishes of the larger community.
Wasn’t Ercolini gifted to the city for precisely this reason? Ercolini is special BECAUSE of the toys. Without them, it’s every other park in Seattle. Our children have learned to walk at Ercolini, ride bikes, share with other children, discover empathy, and experience true community. For the parents, we have a place to take them, meet other parents, it’s a space that encourages outdoor time and interaction in a way that other parks can’t. Ercolini is unique and should be kept that way.
We ask the following:
– Please limit the frequency of toy removal to a more cyclical time frame. Families have donated toys to replenish the loss and those toys should have a reasonable life span for the children’s use, and/or;
– Only take the broken toys and/or set up an area for parents to deposit broken toys for the City to pick up rather than taking all or most of them. We’re happy to partner with the City on this, and/or;
– Please arrange an opportunity for us to work with the neighbors requesting removal so we can reach a mutually beneficial agreement; and/or
– Suggest an alternative to removing the toys. Many thanks in advance for considering our requests.
-West Seattle Parents Who Care
As of the moment we’re hitting “publish” on this story, that online petition has more than 430 signers.
After hearing about this – thanks for all the tips! – we asked Parks about the toy takeaway, and spokesperson Dewey Potter replied: “The Park Code has a section that prohibits leaving things in a park. We know that some people like to bring supplemental toys to play areas, and we have tried to walk a middle ground. The toys the crew removed this morning were either old or broken, and there are still many left at the playground. The crew has had complaints from people who had tripped or nearly tripped, so they did post signs in the park. People apparently are not paying attention to the signs, so the crew tries to walk that middle ground by going by once a week to remove any toys that are worn or broken or could present an obstacle or a hazard. Ercolini Park has an unusually large number of toys that are left behind — the crew chief once counted four dozen. We would encourage people to leave only toys that are in good repair.”
Meantime, what happened to the toys taken away by Parks crews – are they somewhere awaiting pickup, or did they just get dumped? We’re waiting for the answer to that.
ADDED WEDNESDAY EVENING: That response, also from Parks spokesperson Potter: “The toys from previous pickups are gone. The crew chief took a quick look at the toys that came in today. She saw signs of wear on the toys on the top of the load and asked the staff about their condition. Their guideline was that they removed toys with damage of any kind. The toys are in the packer truck and cannot be retrieved.”
On sunny days, visitors to Alki generate a lot of trash. On the beach side, Parks struggles to keep up with it, as reported here before, and as a few regional news organizations noted earlier this week. But today, outside the park boundaries, Alki has one less trash can – apparently, because it was used too much. Diana e-mailed Metro to ask about the trash can that disappeared from the stop on eastbound Alki at 61st SW and shared the response she received today:
Thank you for your recent case submittal, advising Metro Transit of your concerns about maintenance and lack of trash can at the bus stop on 61st Ave SW & Alki Ave SW. I appreciate your use of public transportation and I regret the circumstances that made it necessary for you to contact us.
This trash can at this stop was pulled due to excessive trash from the coffee shops and not our bus patrons. Our shelter cleaning crews are not (there) everyday and the amount of trash that was being dumped was a factor in the removal of this trash can. A trash can will not be re-installed.
“Coffee shops” would apparently be a reference to the Starbucks store that’s a few steps down and the Top Pot store to the west of that. And as to how much trash is NOT too much, we’re contacting Metro to follow up.
(Wednesday evening note: We’re expecting Metro’s response tomorrow, so look for a followup.)
(UPDATED 5:53 PM with comment from tree/lot’s owner)
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
Barely three blocks as the crow flies from where the illegal cutting of 100+ trees sparked a regional uproar, the potential legal cutting of a single tree is inspiring a quiet revolt.
Among the leaders – a neighborhood 9-year-old.
This tree and its situation are quite different from the now-notorious, deciduous-tree-dominated “clearcut” on public land in the Duwamish Head Greenbelt. This is an evergreen, on private land, a small lot over which it towers, a Ponderosa Pine labeled an “exceptional tree” by city standards, even in the arborist report for the proposal to build a house on the ~3000-square-foot site where it grows, at 3036 39th SW.
The city is currently in a comment period for the project, but as a standalone single-family-house proposal, it didn’t hit our radar until reader Catherine Darwin posted about it in the WSB Forums, starting the topic “Large Ponderosa Pine on 39th SW.” Read More
Five biznotes today:
ULTA TO WESTWOOD? The big Westwood Village space vacated by Pier 1 Imports has a new tenant on the way, according to city permit files: Ulta Beauty. The beauty-products retailer has almost 900 stores, according to its recent first-quarter-earnings report, including not-so-far-away Southcenter. We have a message out to their corporate HQ. (Update: Corporate response – “I don’t have anything to share with you at this time.”)
WONDERING ABOUT WHOLE FOODS? We’ve been asked recently about the latest timeline for Whole Foods Market to open in The Whittaker, the big mixed-use project under construction at 4755 Fauntleroy Way SW. So we asked a company spokesperson. Reply: “Second half of 2017.” (The apartments are opening sooner.)
KIZUKI, THE SAGA CONTINUES: Elsewhere in The Junction, the #1 “when is it opening?” question continues to involve Kizuki Ramen and Izakaya in Junction 47. The newest public answer: “Near the end of this month.”
TALARICO’S REMODEL: Several people asked what’s going on at covered-up Talarico’s Pizzeria in The Junction. Back in mid-May when we reported on the old Schuck’s sign uncovered out front, we mentioned that the restaurant explained this was all part of a front-end remodel including the windows. (Update: They’re reopening at 5 pm today.)
WHITE CENTER NOTES: In case you hadn’t seen our coverage on White Center Now – a county permit-application sign says the recently sold Chevron at 15th/16th/100th is set for a Starbucks and Popeye’s. In our followup attempts, the former has no comment aside from a generic “we’re always looking for new locations”; we haven’t reached media relations at the latter yet. … And if you are following the White Center Dairy Queen saga, which started with an abrupt shutdown blamed on “register failure” and has included allegations that the franchisee didn’t pay employees for their final two weeks, two tipsters spotted equipment being hauled out yesterday. We have a message out to DQ corporate. (Added 11:36 am – Just got a call back from DQ corporate, which is checking with the “territory operator” to find out the location’s fate. … Added 3:12 pm: The corporate spokesperson says this will NOT be reopening as a DQ.)
Happy midweek! Highlights from the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar for today/tonight:
LOCAL-BUSINESS MEETUP: Noon-1:15 pm, come visit our area’s only coworking center, West Seattle Office Junction (WSB sponsor), and network with your fellow local business entrepreneurs. (6040 California SW)
THE GREATEST MOVIES YOU’VE NEVER HEARD OF: Wednesday-afternoon series continues at Senior Center of West Seattle, 1 pm, with Spencer Tracy in “Me and My Gal.” $1 members/$2 nonmembers. (California SW/SW Oregon)
LANDER STREET BRIDGE OPEN HOUSE: This revived SDOT project in SODO is of major interest in West Seattle, as a way to keep things moving over the train tracks. If you have questions, today’s 4-6 pm open house in SODO is one place to get answers – there’s also an “online open house” now accessible here. Stop by Metropolist.
AMERICAN LEGION POST 160: 6 pm on second Wednesdays is the monthly meeting at Post 160 in The Triangle. (3618 SW Alaska)
ULTIMATE FRISBEE: 6 pm Wednesday is “coed,” at Fairmount Playfield – more info here. (5400 Fauntleroy Way SW)
LEGISLATIVE UPDATE: During tonight’s 7 pm meeting of the 34th District Democrats, district state legislators Reps. Eileen Cody and Joe Fitzgibbon and Sen. Sharon Nelson are scheduled to present an update on what’s been going on in Olympia. See the full agenda here. Meeting’s at The Hall @ Fauntleroy. (9131 California SW)
COUNTRY COVERS: That’s what you’ll hear from The Loose Heels at Parliament Tavern tonight, 8:30 pm. No cover. (4210 SW Admiral Way)
SOMETHING FOR THE CALENDAR? Please e-mail us the info – plain text in the body of your e-mail – at least a week in advance (the earlier the better!), email@example.com – thanks!
4:15 AM: A “full response” is arriving at a possible house-fire call in the 8100 block of 30th SW [map]. More to come.
4:19 AM: It’s a garage fire, SFD has tweeted. The response is being scaled down and its investigator is on the way.
4:29 AM: Our crew is at the scene and confirms that the fire’s out but a detached garage is damaged, as is a car inside it. No one hurt.
4:36 AM: SFD’s investigator has arrived to figure out what caused this. (Sunday’s early-morning garage fire, you might recall, was blamed on improperly discarded charcoal briquets. We’ll check back on this one later in the morning.)
10:19 AM: SFD spokesperson Lt. Sue Stangl tells WSB the garage fire is suspected to have been set, so Seattle Police are investigating. We went back a short time ago for a daylight look at the damage:
The arson tipline is 800-55-ARSON.