West Seattle, Washington
Story and photos by Tony Lystra
Reporting for West Seattle Blog
Each Friday evening, a throng gathers at Uptown Espresso in Delridge to battle dragons, orcs, trolls, vampires, demon lords, and worse. They slide up to the coffee shop’s many broad, weathered tables and lay out their dice, “character sheets,” maps and figurines, then spend the evening in a fantasy.
They’re playing Dungeons & Dragons, the ’70s-created role-playing game, where players tell a story together, learning what happens next, deciding how they want to respond, and rolling dice to determine their success.
Game play at the Delridge shop (3845 Delridge Way SW) usually starts around 7 p.m. and wraps up just before midnight. The evenings can attract 50 people or more, organizers say. There’s even a custom gaming table in the store that opens up to reveal a pit where maps can be laid out and figurines maneuvered. (Uptown is under new management and has cleared its shelves of games it previously offered for sale, but the D&D nights are expected to continue.)
Dungeons & Dragons, once thought a bastion of the awkward and scorned by Christian evangelicals as occultist, has enjoyed a startling resurgence in recent years.
On the second night of the new year, the Southwest District Council will be the first community group to meet in 2019. SWDC includes reps from community councils and other organizations around western West Seattle (the Delridge Neighborhoods District Council is its eastern-WS counterpart); all are welcome to attend the meeting Wednesday, January 2nd, 6:30 pm, at the Senior Center/Sisson Building, 4217 SW Oregon. Agenda info as provided by the SWDC is in our calendar listing.
In case you haven’t already seen it in the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar, here’s a way to try biking between here and downtown as an alternative during #Realign99 and beyond. Doug suggested the spotlight:
West Seattle Bike Connections and Cascade Bicycle Club are hosting a free ride next Saturday, January 5th, at 9:30 am to help potential first-time bike commuters test out the West Seattle to downtown bike commute. Don Brubeck will be leading the ride, which will be leaving from the Starbucks in Alaska Junction.
This should be an opportunity for anyone searching for alternatives during the viaduct closure to test out the bike ride on a calm, weekend morning with plenty of others.
The full ride will be about 16 miles round trip and will follow the waterfront to Seattle Center, then come back through South Lake Union and downtown. Those interested in a shorter 8-mile ride could stop for a coffee in Occidental Square, then rejoin the group as it passes back through Pioneer Square on the return trip.
Full details are here.
Just got word from WestSide Baby – which helps thousands of children and their families every year – that you are invited to a special West Seattle showing of “Mary Poppins Returns” next Saturday, courtesy of a well-known West Seattle dad. The announcement:
Join us for a special complimentary showing of Mary Poppins Returns on Saturday, January 5, at 10 am at the Admiral Theater. Admission is absolutely free. Suggested donation of diapers (sizes 4-6), wipes, new kids socks/undies, or funds in any amount to help kids and families in need. westsidebaby.org/donate-now
In 1964, the original Mary Poppins movie was released – and even played for a time at the historic Admiral Theater! Lifelong West Seattleite and current King County Executive Dow Constantine attended the show with his mom. This year, he wants to thank this community by treating families to a special free morning showing of Mary Poppins Returns at the Admiral Theater.
Dow shares, “In 1964, mom took me to see my first film – the original Mary Poppins. For mom’s birthday last week, the whole family went with her to a matinee showing of Mary Poppins Returns – my own daughter’s first chance to see a film in a real theater! We thought it would be fun to honor mom by inviting the community to the movies.”
WestSide Baby provides essential items like diapers, clothing and equipment to local children in need. Donations from families attending the show will reach children within western King County in early 2019.
WestSide Baby Executive Director Nancy Woodland is thrilled to partner for this fun event. “WestSide Baby is focused on the very basics for kids. During the holiday season, there is incredible generosity of spirit in West Seattle and that magic means many more children will be safe, warm and dry in early 2019. Mary Poppins swoops in to remind kids and adults alike to keep the fun and magic a part of every day. I can think of no better way to celebrate this community, open the doors to a movie AND ensure more children receive what they need.”
Theater doors will open by 9:45 and seating is limited to 250.
If you’re not familiar with WS Baby, here’s a quick overview:
WestSide Baby meets the basic needs of vulnerable children to promote safety, security & healthy development. They provide essential items to keep children safe, warm and dry by collecting and distributing diapers, clothing and equipment. In 2018 they distributed over 1.4 million diapers to families in need, and served 40,000 children in western King County. Their model is unique. They receive donations from the community, check and sort those donations, and distribute them directly to 114 partner agencies, who are experts in their families, and the children they serve. These professionals get the items the children need, and WestSide Baby can focus on collecting the basic essentials. WestSide Baby was “born” in West Seattle in 2001 and now serves children throughout all of western King County.
(And if you haven’t been to The Admiral – it’s at 2343 California SW.)
Play ball! From the WSB inbox:
Believe it or not, baseball season is right around the corner and registration is now open for our spring season! West Seattle Baseball is a PONY organization whose younger divisions play at the Pee Wee Fields by Riverview Playfield. Complete registration before 1/1 and receive $10 off. Why so early? We need to get all the kids signed up, placed on teams, uniforms and equipment ordered and be ready for practice to begin in in early March.
Please visit www.westseattlebaseball.com and click on the big REGISTRATION banner on the homepage to get started.
While you’re there, you can find helpful information like:
-2019 important dates
-A handy matrix with info on all divisions
-Contact information for league leadership
(Ruby-Crowned Kinglet, photographed by Mark Wangerin)
Second-to-last day of 2018 is here – and so are some options:
BRUNCH: Did you know Whisky West (WSB sponsor) in Morgan Junction is now open for weekend brunch? 9 am-3 pm. (6451 California SW)
WEST SEATTLE FARMERS’ MARKET: Year-round, even on this between-holidays Sunday, the WSFM is happening 10 am-2 pm in the street in the heart of The Junction. (California SW between SW Oregon and SW Alaska)
WEST SEATTLE SPORTSMEN’S CLUB OPEN HOUSE: 11 am-3 pm at the Roger Dahl Rifle Training Range beneath West Seattle Stadium: “Learn more about the club, adult rifle and pistol leagues, the youth rifle team, and upcoming training and classes – all happening at Seattle’s oldest indoor range.” More info in our calendar listing. (4432 35th SW)
LOG HOUSE MUSEUM: Before 2018 is history, go look further into the peninsula’s past at the Log House Museum! Noon-4 pm. (61st/Stevens)
CAMPFIRE JAM: Second installment of this monthly “acoustic singalong campfire jam for all” at Parliament Tavern, 7 pm. More info here. 21+. (4210 SW Admiral Way)
‘THE OFFICE’ TRIVIA: New trivia series with cash prizes – 8 pm at The Skylark. $5/player. All ages. (3803 Delridge Way SW)
KARAOKE: Do your late-night singing at Talarico’s, 10 pm. (4718 California SW)
LOOK AHEAD TO NEW YEAR’S EVE/DAY … in our West Seattle Holiday Guide!