month : 08/2018 314 results

CONGRATULATIONS! Seattle Audubon award for Kersti Muul

Thanks to Lee for the photo and tip – that’s West Seattleite Kersti Muul, honored at the Seattle Audubon Volunteer Appreciation Dinner and Awards Ceremony, receiving the 2018 Education Award for “Extraordinary Commitment To The Education Program.” Kersti’s educational efforts have included helping people protect, understand, and appreciate local fauna and flora in many ways, including photos and information she’s shared with readers here on WSB. Congratulations!

West Seattle Crime Watch: Package thieves on video; prowler in a convertible

Two reader reports from recent early-morning incidents:

ADMIRAL PACKAGE THIEF: The video is from Jeff:

He says that was recorded at 4:37 am Tuesday in an Admiral neighborhood.


Sunday night at 3 am (8/26), I called the cops on a prowler across from the Delridge P-Patch community gardens. The police showed up shortly after the prowler got in his yellow convertible and drove off headed north. Hopefully they caught the guy! Black hoodie was his only identifier.

Remembering Mike Hawley, 1960-2018

The family of former West Seattleite Mike Hawley is sharing this remembrancce:

CW4 Michael Warren “Mike” Hawley (U.S. Army Ret.), a resident of Dothan, AL, passed away on Tuesday, August 21, 2018 from injuries sustained in a helicopter crash in Granger, TX. Funeral services were held this past Monday, August 27, with burial following at Meadowlawn Memorial Park in Enterprise, AL.

Mike was born August 14, 1960 in Seattle and spent the early part of his life in West Seattle. He was a 1978 graduate of West Seattle High School and attended South Seattle Community College and received his Bachelor’s Degree from Excelsior College and was currently working on a Masters Degree. Following school, he joined the U.S. Army 2nd Battalion Rangers, then later left and re-signed as a Warrant Officer and attended flight school. He served as a helicopter pilot for over 20 years prior to his retirement. Mike was enjoying his military retirement working as a part-time contract helicopter instructor pilot in Texas. He has resided in Dothan since 2006 and was an avid golfer, enjoyed fishing, and loved smoking a good cigar.

Mike’s career highlights as a pilot are as follows: B Co., 2nd Platoon, 2nd Battalion, 75th Infantry (Ranger), (SOCOM) Ft. Lewis, WA, Special Operations Infantryman; B Co, 1st Battalion, 160th SOAR (Special Operations Aviation Regiment), Ft. Campbell, KY, AH-6J Special Operations Pilot;); 1-14th Aviation Training Battalion, Ft. Rucker, AL, Senior Instructor Pilot/Master Gunner OH58D(R); 1-17th Air Cavalry Squadron Fort Bragg, NC; 1st Battalion, 25th Infantry Division, Schofield Barracks, Hawaii, Standardization Instructor Pilot OH-58D(R); Blackwater Aviation, Baghdad, Iraq, Lead Pilot MD-530F; DynCorp, Kabul, Afghanistan (Special Mission Wing) Counter Narco-Terrorism Program, Standardization Instructor Pilot Russian Mi-17; Utility Aviation, Brunner Aerospace, Georgetown, TX, Senior Instructor Pilot MD-530F.

Survivors include his wife, Tonisha Hawley; his daughters, Audrey Hawley, Alexandria Hawley, and Heather Hawley; his in-laws, Harold and Mary Sconyers; sisters, Jackie (Bruce) Leland and Kathie (Jon) Hall; brother, Jeff Hawley; sister-in-law, Tangela (Kevin) Souders; brother-in-law, Jeff (Erica) Sconyers; nieces and nephews, Michael Maier, Rick Maier, Marilyn Souders, Maddie Souders, Maredith Sconyers, and Garrison Sconyers; grandchildren, Chelsea and Jesslyn; 3 great-nieces also survive. Mike was preceded in death by his parents, Jack and Marjorie Hawley.

Mike will be greatly missed by his loving family and amazing friends. He had a true love for life and never met a stranger. Everyone who knew him loved his infectious laugh and sense of humor which led to his natural ability to make others laugh.

(WSB publishes West Seattle obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available, to

FOLLOWUP: Teachers’ informational picketing in West Seattle; contract talks continue Thursday

(WSB photo)

4:51 PM: No word yet on how today’s contract talks between Seattle Public Schools and the Seattle Education Association went/are going. But on this day after voting to authorize a strike if no deal is reached in the next week, many educators spent an hour on informational picket lines before or after their workday. Above, Louisa Boren STEM K-8 educators along Delridge minutes ago. Adding photos from other schools shortly.

5:43 PM: Teachers from Gatewood Elementary were stationed at the busy corner of Fauntleroy/Alaska:

(WSB photo)

Several blocks south on Fauntleroy, the Fairmount Park Elementary line:

(Texted photo)

From Alki Elementary:

(E-mailed photo)

And the first group we heard from after the vote last night, Genesee Hill Elementary:

The sign on the left in their photo is a big issue in addition to salary, teacher Stephen Katz told us in a conversation during the picketing, as one of the chants was for “full-time counselors! full-time nurses! full-time librarians!” Even GH – the most populous elementary in West Seattle – has only a part-time nurse, he explained. Katz – who teaches third-graders at GH – has a unique perspective, having worked in the private sector, including as a small-business owner, before becoming a teacher at age 50. He and the GH teachers will picket again 3:30-4:30 pm tomorrow; most of the other schools we heard from also plan to do it again tomorrow, either before or after their workdays – they are all continuing to prepare for the scheduled first day of school one week from today, as contract talks continue. Also: The union has just announced that it and the district will be back at the table tomorrow, saying “some progress was made” today.

ADDED LATE WEDNESDAY NIGHT: We’ve also received a photo from Pathfinder K-8:

They too will be out picketing again tomorrow – 7 am to 8 am outside the school on Pigeon Point.

UPDATE: Big response, small fire at apartment in 7500 block 35th SW

August 29, 2018 3:00 pm
|    Comments Off on UPDATE: Big response, small fire at apartment in 7500 block 35th SW
 |   West Seattle fires | West Seattle news | WS breaking news

(Photo tweeted by @westseawx)

3 PM: Seattle Fire has sent a “full response” to the Hill Crest Apartments in the 7500 block of 35th SW.

3:02 PM: First firefighters on scene aren’t seeing anything but are checking out an odor of smoke inside the building, possibly from a 4th-floor unit.

3:04 PM: This is now reported to be a kitchen fire. The response is being downsized.

3:19 PM: Ventilating now, reports @westseawx, whose photo we’ve added above (note that you’ll want to avoid northbound 35th in that area for a while, until the response clears).

New West Seattle firefighter helps catch drunk-driving suspect after hit-run crash outside Station 32

A new firefighter at Seattle Fire Station 32 in The Triangle helped police catch a suspected drunk driver after a hit-run crash in front of the station. It happened around 5:20 pm Tuesday; a 34-year-old woman was in the crosswalk with her dog when a pickup-truck driver hit her. As we learned from a tipster later – confirmed today by SFD – firefighter Felton Tate got a description of the truck and driver and provided it to police. With that information, SPD found the 26-year-old suspect at his home a few blocks away. The report says the suspect acknowledged to the officer that he had been involved in the collision. The report says police found “what appeared to be an empty case of beer in the passenger seat of the vehicle.” The driver, police say, showed signs of intoxication, so he was arrested. The report says he refused a breath test until more than three hours after the crash – police were by then pursuing a warrant to draw blood – and at that time, the report says, his breath tests came in at .12. He was booked into jail, where the register shows he is still in custody, in lieu of $5,000 bail. The victim, meantime, was taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

FOLLOWUP: Bus-stop murder suspect arraigned

(WSB photo, August 9)

“Not guilty” was the plea this morning at the arraignment of 16-year-old Loyan A. Ahmed, charged as an adult with second-degree murder in the August 9th bus-stop shooting of 37-year-old Taylor Fehlen. As reported here two weeks ago, detectives say the ORCA card Ahmed used on the bus led police to him, and that they heard from his mother – who told them she had seen his photo here – as they closed in. According to court documents from this morning’s hearing at the King County Courthouse, Ahmed’s lawyer asked Superior Court Judge John Chun to prevent media from photographing the defendant’s face, and the judge granted that motion. Ahmed is due back in court September 12th.

What’s ahead for your West Seattle Wednesday

August 29, 2018 10:47 am
|    Comments Off on What’s ahead for your West Seattle Wednesday
 |   West Seattle news | WS miscellaneous

(Aerial view of West Seattle, earlier this week, by Bill Schrier)

Highlights for the rest of your Wednesday, mostly from the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar:

WADING POOL OPEN: The Lincoln Park wading pool is open 11 am-8 pm today. (8011 Fauntleroy Way SW)

SPRAYPARK OPEN: It’s also the last full week of operations for Highland Park Spraypark, 11 am-8 pm. (1100 SW Cloverdale)

COLMAN POOL CLOSED: Repairs continue at the outdoor saltwater pool on Lincoln Park’s shore. We’ll update separately when we hear its status for tomorrow.

MOVIE MATINEE: 1 pm at the Senior Center of West Seattle, “Charlie Chan on Broadway” is this week’s feature. (4217 SW Oregon)

PICKETING PLANNED: As reported here last night, Seattle Public Schools teachers have voted to authorize a strike if they don’t have a contract agreement before the first day of school next week. Some local schools had informational picketing this morning; teachers at two others have told us they’re doing it this afternoon, Genesee Hill Elementary, 3:30-4:30 pm (5013 SW Dakota), and Louisa Boren STEM K-8, 3:55-4:55 pm (5950 Delridge Way SW).

HIGH POINT MARKET GARDEN FARMSTAND: 4-7 pm, buy fresh-grown organic produce right next to High Point’s mini-farm! (32nd SW/SW Juneau)

SKYLARK OPEN MIC: Signups at 7:30 pm, music (all genres – comedy welcome too) at 8:30 pm, at The Skylark. (3803 Delridge Way SW)

UPDATE: About the police response in The Junction

8:52 AM: Thanks for the tips about a big police response in The Junction, in the alley just east of California/Alaska. It ended before we even got there but police wrapping up at the scene say it involved a man with what turned out to be a BB/pellet gun. He is in custody. No one hurt. Mike Lindblom, West Seattleite who happens to also be a Seattle Times journalist, was there as this unfolded – on his way to catch a bus – and tweeted:

He also says Husky Deli owner Jack Miller confronted the man. We’re headed over to see if we can talk to him.

9:24 AM: More from Mike in this comment. Meantime, WSB’s Patrick Sand talked with Jack Miller, who says it was an Airsoft-type pellet pistol and that the man who had it claimed he was just “shooting at the flowers.”

ADDED FRIDAY: Just discovered Instagram user @r_dabernathy‘s video of this. Adding for the record:

A post shared by Ryan Abernathy (@r_dabernathy) on


August 29, 2018 7:02 am
|    Comments Off on TRAFFIC/TRANSIT TODAY: Wednesday watch
 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle traffic alerts

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

7:02 AM: Good morning. So far, no incidents reported outbound from West Seattle.

8:38 AM: Police activity is reported in The Junction. We’re on the way to find out more and will have a separate story once we do.

UPDATE: Seattle teacher strike? After authorization vote, local educators picket Wednesday

ORIGINAL REPORT, 10:10 PM TUESDAY: Tonight, Seattle Public Schools teachers voted to authorize a strike if there’s no contract agreement before school starts on September 5th. One local school will be the site of informational picketing the next two days, according to this announcement just out of the WSB inbox:

This evening Seattle Education Association members voted to approve a strike, pending no tentative agreement by September 4th.

Genesee Hill Elementary School educators will be picketing Wednesday and Thursday from 3:30-4:30 outside of our building. We are calling on our district to bring us a fair contract that adequately compensates all educators in a city that has become increasingly expensive, fund full time counselors, nurses and librarians in all our schools and deeply develop our commitment to equity and racial justice, among other essential demands.

Our staff appreciates all support by family and community members. Please join us, bring your kids, and wear red for ed!

The district’s most-recent update was published yesterday. The teachers’ expired contract was reached three years ago after a strike that delayed the start of school.

ADDED 9:05 AM WEDNESDAY: Other schools’ teachers are picketing too. This photo was sent from outside West Seattle High School this morning:

We also were messaged about picketing this morning at Madison Middle School and Arbor Heights Elementary. And picketing is planned for an hour at Louisa Boren STEM K-8 starting just before 4 pm. And the district has updated its post on negotiations, noting that talks are scheduled to resume today.

SMOKE: Some at sunset; maybe more tomorrow, ‘briefly’

August 28, 2018 8:42 pm
|    Comments Off on SMOKE: Some at sunset; maybe more tomorrow, ‘briefly’
 |   Health | West Seattle news | West Seattle weather

8:42 PM: Tonight’s pink setting sun was a reminder there’s still smoke in the area – while not enough to hamper cross-Sound visibility, the Olympics were mostly out of view. The Washington Smoke Information website says you can blame BC fires for that, and the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency adds:

We may see some smoke from the Vancouver Island fires Wednesday morning, which could cause levels to briefly reach MODERATE or UNHEALTHY FOR SENSITIVE GROUPS. Rain and clouds are expected to follow that evening and into Thursday which should keep our long-term AQ in the GOOD to MODERATE through Friday.

ADDED: Thanks to Tiff Rivera for these views of the sunset and moonrise:

Colman Pool to remain closed Wednesday

(Closure-alert sign at south Lincoln Park lot – thanks to Venkat for the photo)

Thanks for the tips! The phone recording for Colman Pool now says it will be closed again Wednesday. The outdoor pool on Lincoln Park’s shore has been closed since Monday afternoon because of mechanical trouble. This is the last week of the pool’s short summer 7-days-a-week schedule; after Labor Day, it’s scheduled to close until one last post-season weekend, September 8-9.

7:30 PM WEDNESDAY NOTE: Just checked web, Twitter, phone and not seeing/hearing anything yet on status for Thursday.

12:01 AM THURSDAY NOTE: We checked again, no update yet for the day ahead.

BACK TO SCHOOL: What West Seattle Helpline’s clothing drive needs most

August 28, 2018 4:58 pm
|    Comments Off on BACK TO SCHOOL: What West Seattle Helpline’s clothing drive needs most
 |   How to help | West Seattle news

Still a few more days to give to the West Seattle Helpline‘s back-to-school clothing drive – we asked what’s most needed:

The Back to School Clothing Drive at C & P Coffee benefiting West Seattle Helpline is still in need of donations! Help us ensure every student starts school feeling confident and comfortable in their clothes! We are specifically looking for new clothing sizes 5-11, and husky sizes for boys. You can drop clothing donations off inside C & P Coffee Company at 5612 California Ave SW in West Seattle. Thank you!

Road notes: School-bus test drives; bridge painting; strike-halted projects

Three road-related notes:

SCHOOL-BUS TEST RUNS: Thanks to local school-bus driver Al for pointing out that it’s test-run time for Seattle Public Schools‘s First Student drivers. We spotted the bus above making a test run through Highland Park and on to the Denny/Sealth campus. Al says drivers will be out tomorrow too. First day of school is scheduled for Wednesday, September 5th (assuming the teachers’ contract is resolved).

BRIDGE/99 PAINTING: SDOT says that if you have to drive the high West Seattle Bridge overnight tonight/early tomorrow, you might encounter a stripe-painting crew, 1-7 (corrected) *am*. Same thing for Highway 99, from East Marginal Way northward, early Friday.

(WSB photo: Picketers in Georgetown)

PROJECTS AFFECTED BY STRIKE: Determining which projects are and aren’t affected by the IUOE Local 302 construction workers’ strike is complicated, but SDOT’s LeAnne Nelson tells WSB that two of its worksites in West Seattle are among those involved so far: The Arbor Heights sidewalk project on 35th SW and the Chief Sealth Walkways project at 25th/26th north of Westwood Village. The union says it met briefly with employer reps yesterday but that no progress was made.

Play, sip, nosh, help: Why you’ll want to get your ‘Grand Affair’ tickets ASAP

August 28, 2018 1:03 pm
|    Comments Off on Play, sip, nosh, help: Why you’ll want to get your ‘Grand Affair’ tickets ASAP
 |   Fun stuff to do | How to help | West Seattle news

(WSB photo from 2017 ‘A Grand Affair’)

Less than a week until ticket prices go up for A Grand Affair,” the annual cocktail-and-casino-style-games benefit for the West Seattle Food Bank. This year, it’s back in West Seattle – at The Sanctuary at Admiral, 6:30 pm Friday, September 14th. It’s a Roaring ’20s-themed cocktail party with casino-style games, hosted wine and beer, heavy appetizers, plus local favorites such as Husky Deli ice cream (served by Jack Miller himself) and specialty cocktails from Peel & Press and The Bridge. Get your ticket(s) here before the price goes up Sunday. (Event co-sponsors include WSB.)

BIZNOTE: Vacation ahead for The Swinery

The Swinery co-owner Kim Anne Léveillé wants to be sure you know the shop/eatery is taking a break starting this Friday: “We will be closed for vacation on August 31 and will re-open on September 7th.” The Swinery’s been open almost 9 years at 3207 California SW.

6 notes for your West Seattle Tuesday

(Monday night’s sunset, photographed by Marc Milrod)

Quick look at what’s ahead for the rest of today/tonight during this pre-holiday week:

COLMAN POOL CLOSED: The pump problems aren’t fixed yet, so as previously noted, the outdoor pool at Lincoln Park remains closed today.

WADING POOL OPEN: The Lincoln Park wading pool is open, 11 am-8 pm. (8011 Fauntleroy Way SW)

WEEKLY FARMSTAND: Delridge Grocery Co-op‘s farmstand with the Little Red Hen Project and ROAR continues today in the Shell parking lot, 3-7 pm. (5441 Delridge Way SW)

TALK ABOUT HIKING WITH KIDS: 3 pm at Lincoln Park‘s north play area, hear from and talk with Susan Elderkin, author of the just-published “Best Hikes With Kids: Western Washington” – details in our calendar listing. (8011 Fauntleroy Way SW)

HOSPITALITY MANAGEMENT DEGREE INFO: Interested in a new career direction? Get info tonight about this program at South Seattle College (WSB sponsor):

South Seattle College’s two-year (six quarter) Bachelor of Applied Science (BAS) in Hospitality Management degree program is specially designed to fit into the lives of Seattle’s busy working professionals and new graduates. Build on your two-year Associate degree, while learning the ins and outs of the hospitality industry…from marketing and sales, to management and human resources.

6-7 pm at the Northwest Wine Academy on the north end of campus. (6000 16th SW)

‘GEEKS WHO DRINK’ TRIVIA: 8 pm at Whisky West (WSB sponsor). What’s it like? Here’s the recap of how it went last week. (6451 California SW)

WHAT ELSE? Semi-quiet this week but things rev up for fall and winter soon and we’re continuing to add to our calendar daily – see it any time here, and if you have something to add, please e-mail us the info, – thank you!

COUNTDOWN: Get ready for fall Recycle Roundup

August 28, 2018 9:49 am
|    Comments Off on COUNTDOWN: Get ready for fall Recycle Roundup
 |   Environment | Fauntleroy | West Seattle news

(WSB photo from April’s Recycle Roundup)

Time to start getting your recyclables together for the fall Recycle Roundup at Fauntleroy Church. Judy Pickens sends the reminder that it’s set for 9 am-3 pm Sunday, September 23rd – drive, ride, walk to the church lot (9140 California SW) with your recyclables and drop them off with 1 Green Planet. Here’s the newest list of what they will and won’t be accepting – free of charge (though donations are always welcome to help the church’s Green Committee continue presenting the twice-yearly Recycle Roundups).


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

7:06 AM: Good morning. No incidents outbound from West Seattle so far. But a texter says the signal at Delridge/Juneau seems to be malfunctioning – cycling through too quickly – and traffic there is backing up.

CONGRATULATIONS! Denny’s Tracy Gill honored as ‘Regional Teacher of the Year’

Denny International Middle School social-studies teacher Tracy Gill has been honored as “Regional Teacher of the Year” – and that puts her in the running for the 2019 Washington State Teacher of the Year award. The Seattle Public Schools announcement also says:

At Denny International Middle School, Tracy is a member of their Racial Equity Team; responsible for developing the capacity of staff to adopt gap-closing strategies and build awareness of the impact of race and poverty on learning. She is knowledgeable at working with students from a wide variety of backgrounds.

Tracy has been an active leader of Seattle Public Schools’ Ethnic Studies Working Group and has worked to coordinate the development of curriculum pilots which will be the foundation for a future Ethnic Studies curriculum. Her activism also extends to the Race and Equity Center of the Seattle Education Association, and she has participated in events to help develop the knowledge and understanding of Seattle teachers.

She is a member of the Seattle-King County NAACP Ethnic Studies Resolution Committee, the group that wrote the resolution that spurred Seattle Public Schools efforts to expand and improve ethnic studies in Seattle’s curriculum.

Gill teaches social studies to sixth-graders at Denny. The state Teacher of the Year, for which she is one of 10 contenders, will be announced next month. (Thanks to the texter who tipped us to this!)

The Whale Trail’s next Orca Talk spotlights harbor porpoises, too

(Photos by Dr. Cindy Elliser)

Next week – it’s a marine-mammal two-fer as The Whale Trail resumes its series of Orca Talks. At 7 pm Tuesday, September 4th, at C & P Coffee Company (5612 California SW; WSB sponsor), here’s what you’ll see and hear:

Harbor porpoises are one of the most abundant animals in the Salish Sea, yet little is known about them. Pacific Mammal Research is dedicated to understanding more about this poorly understood population, using techniques such as photo-ID surveys and passive acoustic technology. Learn more about this shy and elusive species, and the research that is shedding new light on them.

The speaker, Dr. Cindy Elliser, has conducted marine mammal research for over 15 years. She worked with Dr. Denise Herzing and the Wild Dolphin Project studying Atlantic spotted and bottlenose dolphins in the Bahamas for 10 years before moving to the Pacific Northwest in 2014 and founding Pacific Mammal Research to study marine mammals in the Salish Sea. She also is an adjunct biology/chemistry instructor at Skagit Valley College.

Whale Trail founder Donna Sandstrom will also give an update on Governor Jay Inslee’s Orca Recovery Task Force (of which she is a member) and how you can become involved in protecting the Southern Resident orcas.

Admission is a suggested donation of $5 (kids free) – advance tickets are available here.

UPDATE: Colman Pool pump problem

6:06 PM: Thanks to Barbara for the tip: Colman Pool closed early today because of a problem. Seattle Parks says they hope to be able to reopen tomorrow. We’ll check in the a.m. and include the info in our daily highlight list. This is the last full week of operation this year at the outdoor pool on Lincoln Park’s shore; after Labor Day, it’ll be closed except for one postseason weekend September 8th-9th.

8:21 PM: Parks now says swim lessons are canceled at Colman tomorrow because of the pump problem. No official call yet on the pool status beyond that.

9:12 AM TUESDAY: Closed today.