month : 06/2017 320 results

GETTING AROUND: Discount transit rides with ORCA Youth cards this summer

June 6, 2017 7:05 pm
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 |   Transportation | West Seattle news

If someone in your household is 18 or younger and rides transit – they’re eligible for a deal this summer – 50-cent Metro bus rides, $1 Sound Transit bus/train rides – by using ORCA Youth cards. The cards will be provided for free, too, instead of the usual $5 charge. The reduced fares will be available June 17th through Labor Day – here’s today’s announcement. Need a card? Order it online, go to Metro’s customer-service office downtown (address is here), or look for Orca To Go events (though we’re not seeing any West Seattle events listed right now).

WEST SEATTLE CRIME WATCH: Hit-run search; car break-in; prowling suspect charged

In West Seattle Crime Watch this afternoon:

SEARCHING FOR HIT-RUN VEHICLE: Southwest Precinct police are asking for your help in finding a hit-run vehicle:

It hit a car on 46th near Lincoln Park and drove away north on 46th.

It will have significant damage to the right front and will be missing the rear bumper. We think it’s an older dark gray Toyota sedan. Possibly a Camry or Corolla.

The (victim)’s car, a new VW Passat, is probably totaled. Any leads would be appreciated.

Sgt. Joe Bauer says the crash happened around noon Sunday; if you have any information, e-mail him at or call the SPD non-emergency number, 206-625-5011.

CAR BREAK-IN: From Kerry:

Our car was prowled last night at 110th and 36th Ave SW in Arbor Heights. We foolishly left it unlocked, and the jerk sat in it to smoke a cigarette before stealing two bags full of sports stuff:

– An orange OR brand bag full of old sports stuff – mitts, frisbees, games

– A West Seattle Soccer Club bag full of my husband’s coaching gear (LAME)

They did not take the bag that was destined for Goodwill.

If anyone sees this stuff dumped anywhere, please post in comments!

PROWLING SUSPECT CHARGED: We reported last week on the arrest of a car-prowling suspect in Fauntlee Hills early Wednesday, and his release on Thursday. Turns out the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office did file a charge against him on Friday. The suspect is 37-year-old William J. Kim, a West Seattle resident. He is charged with felony second-degree vehicle prowling, though the only thing missing from the victim’s car was about $5 in change; the felony charge is merited, court documents explain, by the fact he was convicted of the same crime at least two times previously. He remains out of jail; a summons for him to appear in court was issued with the charge, rather than an arrest warrant.

WEST SEATTLE SUMMER FEST: Calling all volunteers! Plus – see the band-lineup poster

June 6, 2017 2:37 pm
|    Comments Off on WEST SEATTLE SUMMER FEST: Calling all volunteers! Plus – see the band-lineup poster
 |   West Seattle festivals | West Seattle news

West Seattle Summer Fest 2017 (with sponsors including WSB) is just five and a half weeks away, July 14-15-16. Two notes today:

VOLUNTEERS: West Seattle’s biggest party of the year needs volunteer power! If you can help – an orientation event is planned tomorrow night, 6 pm at the West Seattle Junction Association offices (4210 SW Oregon, above Shadowland). What kind of volunteer help is needed? WSJA’s Lora Swift replies, “The Summer Fest opportunities range from pre-festival activities like the SF street team – placing posters around West Seattle. I’m also looking for people who would like to write some content about the festival and bands. Maybe do some interviews. Before the festival, we’ll need help setting up. During we’ll need volunteers in the kids zone, info booth, sponsorship stewards. All kind of soft serve jobs, I want to make this a fun experience for the people who are giving their time.” You can sign up by going here.

BAND-LINEUP POSTER: We brought you first word of the Summer Fest band lineup back on May 17th. Today, WSJA is out with the official poster:

Here’s a YouTube playlist so you can get into the mood!

TRAFFIC ALERT UPDATE: RapidRide C-Line bus stalled on southbound California at Findlay

If you’re headed southbound on California SW between The Junction and Morgan Junction, be aware that RapidRide C-Line bus is blocking the lane just south of Findlay – and might be for some time longer. Ventana Construction (WSB sponsor) across the street sent the photo and tells us the bus was having audible engine trouble and is awaiting a tow. Getting around it requires center-turn-lane use.

2:08 PM: The bus is gone.

ROXBURY CHANGES: Days left to answer SDOT survey asking which option you prefer

If you didn’t go to the SDOT open house about the as-soon-as-2019 SW Roxbury repaving project, you might not know the city’s also proposing more channelization changes (as they’re also doing with the SW Avalon project). This Friday (June 9th) is the deadline to take the newest survey and tell them what you think of the proposed options.

Here’s the overview of how the roadway is configured now in the repaving zone, between 35th SW and 16th SW:

Here’s the overview of the Option 1 proposal:

Here’s the overview of the Option 2 proposal:

The “boards” from the open house also break down the two options, and current configuration, into five detailed cross-sections you can scroll through below (or see here as PDF):

The survey asking you whether you prefer existing configuration, Option 1, or Option 2, is here. You’ll have to click through several pages to get to that point – and also note the question about a “family-friendly bike route” that would NOT be on Roxbury. SDOT is looking for survey responses by this Friday.

FOLLOWUP: Suspect arrested in encampment death, bail set at $1 million

FIRST REPORT, 11:38 AM: Yesterday we reported on the big police response along southbound Highway 509 (shown in our clip above) as officers investigated the death of a 25-year-old man in the unsanctioned encampment on the slope between the highway and Myers Way. This morning, an update from Seattle Police:

As part of Monday’s investigation, SPD Homicide detectives determined an assault had occurred within the encampment. Police arrested a 43-year-old man for investigation of homicide and booked him into the King County Jail.

The suspect has a fairly lengthy criminal record, according to state online files; the felony cases are mostly drug-related. As it turns out that he was booked last night, he’s likely to have a bail hearing today, which means we may have more information later about what police believe happened.

5:08 PM UPDATE: Prosecutors say the suspect waived the right to appear at his bail hearing; he’s being held in lieu of $1 million bail. The document prepared for the judge says that when emergency responders to the site got there yesterday, the victim “appeared to have traumatic injuries to the head.” Tips from witnesses at the scene led police to the suspect, who was taken downtown to be interviewed. The probable-cause documents say he told police he and another man hit the victim with a baseball bat; witnesses gave differing stories of what they saw.

ADDED WEDNESDAY EVENING: The victim has been identified as 24-year-old Dillon P. Graham, and the cause of death as “blunt force” head injury, ruled to be homicide. The suspect remains in jail.

West Seattle Tuesday: From community involvement, to baseball, to music …

(Anna’s Hummingbird, photographed by Mark Ahlness and shared via the WSB Flickr group)

From the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar, here’s some of what’s ahead today/tonight:

ALL-METRO LEAGUE BASEBALL GAME: 3:30 pm at Southwest Athletic Complex – come cheer for local high-school-baseball standouts! (2801 SW Thistle)

TRIANGLE IMPROVEMENT TASK FORCE: 4:30-7 pm, the citizens’ committee working on the Fauntleroy-Vashon-Southworth route challenges has its next meeting in the Fellowship Hall at Fauntleroy Church, with a report planned on the recent four-day experiment in changing tollbooth procedures at Fauntleroy. All welcome. (9140 California SW)

DREAM DINNERS OPEN HOUSE: As previewed here last night, two sessions tonight offer you the chance to make three dinners for a discount, plus sample some of what Dream Dinners-West Seattle (WSB sponsor) has to offer. E-mail or phone (info’s in the preview) to see if slots are left at 5 or 6:30.

WESTWOOD-ROXHILL-ARBOR HEIGHTS COMMUNITY COUNCIL: 6:15 pm at Southwest Library. The meeting is scheduled to include a chance to vote in-person on the Your Voice, Your Choice projects (more info in this WSB story). (35th SW/SW Henderson)

WEST SEATTLE BIKE CONNECTIONS: Monthly meeting, 6:30 pm at HomeStreet Bank (WSB sponsor) in The Junction. (41st SW/SW Alaska)

WEST SEATTLE BOOSTER CLUB: 7 pm meeting at West Seattle High School, all welcome to come find out how this community group is working to help WSHS athletes. (3000 California SW)

JARED MITCHELL & THE WING TIPS: 8-11 pm, pop-py Americana music at Parliament Tavern. No cover. 21+. (4210 SW Admiral Way)

YOU CAN HELP: Book donations sought for local students

That’s a scene that one local teacher hopes to see outside the classroom this summer. And she needs your help. Here’s the announcement:

Roxhill Elementary teacher Neysa Turner aims to keep kids reading this summer. Students need continuous exposure to high-quality books to accelerate growth and continue reaching for new adventures in life and literature. We are looking for book donations to build a mobile lending library for K-12 South Sound students.

Book donations can be dropped off at the following locations:

1. Roxhill Elementary: 9430 30th Ave SW, M-F 7:30 am-3 pm

2. Also at local business Flourish Beauty Salon and Spa, 5962 Fauntleroy Way SW, M-F 10 am- 7 pm; Sat-Sun 10 am- 4 pm


(SDOT MAP with travel times/video links; is the ‘low bridge’ closed? LOOK HERE)

7:33 AM: Another routine morning, so far. No incidents reported in/from West Seattle so far.

STADIUM ZONE WATCH: Mariners open another homestand tonight, vs. Minnesota, 7:10 pm.

8:23 AM Headed to check out reports of a backup on Highland Park Way hill, reportedly lane closures on West Marginal but no SDOT alert.

8:52 AM: Our crew says it was an SDOT crew painting at the West Marginal/HP Way intersection. They looked to be wrapping up.

West Seattle whale-watching: More humpback sightings

ORIGINAL REPORT, 5:53 AM: Andrew reports a humpback off Alki this morning – spotted near 57th SW [map], “and it looked like it was heading toward the Bay.” One was seen off Fauntleroy Monday morning and evening, as reported here (with video added last night).

6:26 PM: See comments for other later sightings – and right now we have e-mail of a sighting northbound off Beach Drive, Cormorant Cove most recently.

WEST SEATTLE CRIME WATCH: Gunfire reports investigated

Making note again this early morning of multiple reports to 911 of suspected gunfire, and we heard directly from one of the people who reported it. She said she heard it a few minutes before midnight, south of 13th/14th/Henderson. Other areas that were mentioned as police were dispatched included 9th/Roxbury, 800 block of SW Trenton, 9200 block of 12th. We haven’t heard whether evidence of gunfire was found.

BIZNOTES: Stroller Strides expands; Dream Dinners open house; new food truck on Roxbury

June 5, 2017 11:47 pm
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 |   West Seattle businesses | West Seattle news

Three quick West Seattle biznotes:

STROLLER STRIDES EXPANDS: West Seattle Stroller Strides is adding a new location – Lincoln Park. The “grand opening” is next Monday, 9:30 am June 12th. Maryana from Stroller Strides’ parent biz Fit4Mom says, “It should be a fun event filled with a great workout, prizes, a diaper drive for WestSide Baby, and most important, a place where WS moms can connect with other WS moms.” Meet on the grass by the south parking lot (Fauntleroy/Cloverdale). Registration is requested – the link is on this page, with additional info.

DREAM DINNERS OPEN HOUSE: Tuesday night, two special sessions at Dream Dinners-West Seattle (4701 41st SW; WSB sponsor) offer you the chance at a deal – make three dinners for $34.99 (see the five options in our calendar listing). When we checked tonight, room remained in the 5 pm and 6:30 pm sessions – e-mail, or call 206-938-5999 to RSVP.

NEW FOOD TRUCK: The 30th/Roxbury 76 station is now home to two food trucks. Besides Thai-U-Up at dinnertime most nights, the new food truck Burger Planet is there for lunch as of this past Sunday. We have a note out asking about their regular days/hours and will add whatever we find out.

WEST SEATTLE CRIME WATCH: Looking for hit-run driver who hurt a dog

Jerica says she knows it’s a long shot, but she’s hoping someone might have information about the hit-and-run crash that injured her dog a week and a half ago:

My dog was hit by a silver sports car on Alki Beach Thursday evening, May 25, in the area near the 2222 apartments [map]. The car didn’t stop and was speeding and passing the car in front of them into oncoming traffic, which was why they likely were unable to to brake in time to prevent hitting her. She’s a Great Dane and would have likely done some damage to the car.

Her dog did survive. If you have any information, contact police and refer to case #2017-200908.

VIDEO: Mystery object seen from Alki, ‘falling’ at sunset – likely a contrail

9:31 PM: Don’t know yet what this was but we’ve received multiple reports, including the text that had the video attached, as seen from Alki Avenue SW. Help us sleuth it! We’ll add whatever we turn up.

9:57 PM: One commenter points to the possibility it was just a contrail. Haven’t found any meteor or rocket reports so that just might be it; still looking just in case.

11:10 PM: Our favorite expert skywatcher Alice Enevoldsen believes it’s a contrail. She writes:

tl;dr–In my expert opinion: contrail.

Longer answer: of course I don’t know for absolutely certain, who could possibly know that, besides the pilot? So let’s run through the main reasonable possibilities.

Space Junk Reentry
As mentioned by the viewers of the video (yay! thank you!) it could be space junk, right? You’re absolutely correct, there’s space junk burning up in our atmosphere all the time. That bright second half of the line sure looks like fire too. The speed is wrong though. Most reentries go a similar speed, since they’re stuff entering our atmosphere from orbit. Controlled reentries have a slightly different speed than uncontrolled ones, but they all tend to be a good bit faster than this is moving.
Here’s a gif of a satellite going about twice as fast as usual.

Again, the speed is wrong. Meteors go much faster, they’re also known as shooting stars. When your friend says “look! A shooting star!” by the time you look, it’s gone. The Chelyabinsk meteor seemed to go a bit slower, because it was huge (as average meteors go) and therefore got deeper into our atmosphere than most. Here’s a gif of a meteor, going about normal speed.

From our point of view looking at the sky on a given day, comets don’t move.

For something long, thin, and cloud-like the first direction to examine is a contrail. The speed of the object is correct for an airplane moving out of our field of view. Also, the direction works, because this “downward” path is consistent with a plane travelling west and eventually disappearing over the horizon. We still have some questions: why do we see it go so far down, and why is the contrail two colors: dark and “fire”?”

Both colors can be explained by the direction of travel and the time. This is around sunset. The end of the plane’s contrail is in the evening sky, in a position that is after sunset and therefore in the Earth’s shadow. The plane’s current position is in sunlight, but as it is sunset, the position is brightly lit with all the colors of the sunset. It is brighter than the clouds it appears near, because it is higher than them and therefore in brighter sunlight than them.

It is potentially possible that the lighting of this contrail makes it so we can see the plane and it’s contrail longer than usual, contributing to the “straight down” appearance of the trail. I’m not certain of that explanation for this part. It could also be as simple as observation bias: this one is so cool, we don’t remember other contrails going this direction.

–Alice Enevoldsen
Alice’s AstroInfo

P.S. Details soon on Alice’s summer-solstice sunset watch!

WEST SEATTLE POWER OUTAGE: 53 homes in Gatewood

8:44 PM: Thanks for the texted tip – 53 homes are without power in Gatewood, the Seattle City Light map confirms. No word yet what caused the outage; the estimated restoration time is after 2 am, but remember that those times are “guesstimates” at best – could be sooner, or later. (Let us know if you see a repair truck – text or call 206-293-6302, our 24/7 hotline – thanks!)

10:30 PM: The map is now updated to attribute the outage to “bird/animal” – which is in line with the first comment below. No change in the restoration guesstimate, though.

5:39 AM: Power was restored early this morning – see comments.

CONGRATULATIONS! Louisa Boren STEM K-8 awards @ district Science/Engineering Fair

Even more local success at the recent Seattle Public Schools district-wide Science and Engineering Fair! Today we received this report, with photos, about Louisa Boren STEM K-8 students’ achievements:

Middle School students from Louisa Boren STEM K-8 participated in the Seattle Public Schools Science and Engineering Fair at the Museum of Flight on June 1st. Of our seven entries in the competition, six were awarded prizes by judges. All four 7th-grade entries, representing our Career and Technical Education Program (CTE) took home awards. 6th Grade received two awards.

Their science teacher, Craig Parsley, had this to say about all Boren’s participants: “Science instruction has got to change with the times. These students represent the kind of innovative thinking and perseverance that we want to see in all students. I am proud of their work.”

Engineering Grade 7 (CTE Students)
Evalinn Kas – Best Data Analysis – Thermoelectric Generation – (Electricity from Automotive Tailpipe Waste-Heat)
Bree Hopkins – Best Aeronautical Engineering – Forward-Deployed Mars Lander Decelerator – (Forward-Mount Parabolic Decelerator)

Science Grade 7 (CTE Students)
Nyjel Sebastion – Most Original Science Project – Spin-ergy (Rotational Torque of Wind Turbines)
Kathryn Soria – Best Data Analysis – Trombe Wall vs. Water Wall (A Study of Heat Retention in Concrete vs. Water)

Engineering Grade 6
Lucca Castillo and Maurice Scott – Most Likely to be Patented – Infrared Black Ice Detector

Grade 6 Science
June Pierson and Esme Jablonsky – Judges Special Recognition – Do the Wave – (Modeling Wave Shape Changes in High Velocity Winds)

Also participating were Kai Perala and Connor Aikas, with their entry, Pneumatic Underwater Retrieval Drone.

VIDEO: Lisa Herbold lone ‘no’ vote as City Council passes beverage tax

(Seattle Channel video of this afternoon’s meeting, with public comment starting 14 minutes in, bill consideration 58 minutes in)

West Seattle/South Park City Councilmember Lisa Herbold was the only “no” vote this afternoon as the council passed the so-called “sugary beverages” tax – officially known as an ordinance “imposing a tax on engaging in the business of distributing sweetened beverages.” Herbold said she isn’t opposed to the concept of the tax but today she tried again to lower it and expand its scope – and again, like last Friday, she couldn’t get a majority of the rest of the council to go along with her. The tax was originally proposed by Mayor Ed Murray, who plans to sign it at a ceremony tomorrow morning. It won final approval 7-1 (Councilmember Kshama Sawant, who voted against it in committee last week along with Herbold, was absent).

THE DETAILS: According to council staff via Twitter, the bill would tax distributors at one and three-quarters cents per beverage ounce for those with $5 million+ income, one cent per beverage ounce for $2 million-$5 million income, those with income under $2 million exempt. But spokesperson Dana Robinson Slote says the full text of the bill “won’t be official until tomorrow morning, when all amendments are integrated by staff.”

Police investigating death between Myers Way and Highway 509

We’ve been out trying to find out more about a police investigation on the slope between Myers Way and Highway 509, and we’ve just learned that they’re looking into a death. Seattle Fire was called earlier, and tells us the person who died is a 25-year-old man. SPD says it was originally reported as an overdose “in a wooded area” that’s known as an unauthorized encampment. But the man’s cause of death will be determined by the King County Medical Examiner’s Office. The SPD response on the shoulder of southbound Highway 509 – part of it is in our photo above – led to quite a slowdown for a while but some of the units have since left.

TRAFFIC ALERT UPDATE: Eastbound West Seattle Bridge ramp to northbound I-5 now clear

3:24 PM: Thanks to everyone who has texted about a problem on the bridge – we’ve finally tracked down some information and a camera turned on the situation, a truck blocking the eastbound bridge ramp to northbound I-5. It was “partly blocking” earlier but now the ramp is closed while they try to get the truck (which is described as having gotten in trouble because of a “shifted load”) out of there. If you’re headed northbound, we’d advise 99 instead until this is cleared.

4:19 PM: The ramp is now clear, per WSDOT (and the “live” camera image above).

CONGRATULATIONS! Metro League awards for Chief Sealth IHS, including Evan Moe on all-league first team

Two notes from Chief Sealth International High School:

From athletic director Ernest Policarpio:

Congratulations to Evan Moe from Chief Sealth for being selected 1st team all-league in baseball two years in a row. He will be playing tomorrow in the All-Metro game tomorrow at 3:30PM at SWAC. Admission is free.

The Southwest Athletic Complex is across from Sealth, at 2801 SW Thistle.

Meantime, a texter sent us this photo of Coach Policarpio with another announcement:

The Sportsmanship Award is for Sealth athletes and coaches, we are told. Congratulations to all!

SNEAK PEEK: Go inside Murray CSO ‘wet weather facility’ before Saturday’s community celebration

(WSB photo, January 2015)

Two and a half years ago, that was the view into the then-under-construction million-gallon combined-sewer-overflow-control tank at what’s now called the Murray “wet weather facility” across from Lowman Beach (named for Murray Avenue SW).

(WSB photos by Patrick Sand)

Today, that’s the view from atop the site – which we just toured with a delegation from the King County Wastewater Treatment Division, which runs the facility, where you’re invited to a community celebration next Saturday (June 10th, 10 am-noon). The $47 million facility has been operational since last November – when it handled an overflow situation; now the exterior’s complete, too, and it’s party time. This has been eight years in the making, dating back to community meetings in 2009 to talk about options for reducing combined-sewer (the system that takes both stormwater and sewage) overflows into Puget Sound in two areas of central/south West Seattle, part of a wide-ranging court order. The Murray project – which replaced a block of residential buildings – ultimately was designed to include viewpoint, seating space, and art atop and alongside its support building. What looks like lawn, for example, is actually part of a green roof.

You might already have seen the exterior – people were there on this sunny morning doing yoga and walking the stairs. The tank itself is off-limits but we got a look at what’s inside the support building:

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West Seattle whale-watching: Humpback reported off Fauntleroy

ORIGINAL REPORT, 11:36 AM: Thanks to the texter who reports a humpback whale about 100 yards off the Fauntleroy ferry dock. We don’t know yet if it’s the same humpback reported in Elliott Bay on Sunday – Orca Network confirmed the ID on that one (BCX1251) and also is reporting this morning’s sighting.

ADDED 9 PM: Thanks to John Schuh for video of the humpback slapping its tail, repeatedly! Also note the comment below saying the whale – or, another humpback – was seen again tonight.

West Seattle toddler survives state’s first case of raccoon-carried parasite illness Baylisascaris

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

One month ago, King County Public Health went public with alarming news: A toddler somewhere in the county had become severely ill with a rare disease linked to parasites found in raccoon droppings.

It’s so rare that this was the first case ever reported in our state, one of fewer than 30 reported in the U.S. since 1973.

This weekend, we learned the young patient is a 20-month-old West Seattle boy named Reed. His mom, Mandy Hall, told her family’s story publicly for the first time, in an online group, and contacted WSB too, because she is determined to educate as many people as possible about the roundworm known as Baylisascaris.

Their terrifying ordeal is not over yet, but Reed “continues to improve literally by the minute,” Mandy said.

Here’s how it began: “On April 26th, I called Reed’s pediatrician because he was sleeping so much. He had been sleeping long hours through the night and taking naps over 3 hours for a few days. This day, by the afternoon he had only been awake for 2 hours. They said it was likely a growth spurt and commented on great timing with me being due with our baby girl the following day … But something in me didn’t feel right. I tried setting him down to walk when he woke and his balance was off.”

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