West Seattle, Washington
If you’re headed this way from points north, avoid the 1st Avenue South Bridge area for a while – emergency crews are there with what SFD says is a two-car crash in the southbound lanes, one flipped with a person trapped inside.
Five days after that early-morning fire gutted a North Admiral house and damaged one next door (WSB coverage here), SFD announced what its investigators found:
Fire Investigators ruled the fire accidental, and determined it was caused by a Christmas tree in the living room that had caught fire from either an energized light string or lit candle ornament.
SFD added that to its original Fireline summary of the incident along with this reminder: “Please remember to water your Christmas tree daily and to keep it at least 3 feet away from heating sources (fireplaces, candles, wood stoves, and heat vents).”
5:16 PM: From Michelle: A break-in early (updated) today at her condo in the 1600 block of Harbor SW, which has been hit before. Above is a security-camera screengrab of the suspect. Michelle says they’ve been hit before, and this time:
We were lucky that they only got one bike. They left several behind, including a new electric that they clearly couldn’t figure out. He did leave behind a watch that I have included. I would love it if people would keep an eye out for this really unique bike! It is going to cost $600 plus to replace and it is my 84-year-old mother’s bike. Grrrrrrrr.
She adds that “we bought it for Mom after she had her hips replaced so that she could just step over it.” The police incident # is 19-1618; if you find the bike, or know anything about the watch, also please let us know.
ADDED 7:04 PM: Thanks for the tips on a big police response near Westwood Village earlier this evening. Though it had dissipated by the time we got there, we were able to ask Southwest Precinct Lt. Steve Strand about it just now at the SW District Council meeting. He said police were after a suspected auto thief. The teenage suspect was caught. The car belonged to his parents, whose custody he’s expected to be released into.
You’ve probably seen regional-media reports about Alan Naiman, a Seattle man who died last year at age 63 and left $11 million to children’s charities after what was by all accounts a frugal life. West Seattle-founded WestSide Baby wants people here to know that they were among the beneficiaries.
“We received a large gift from Alan at the end of 2017 and we were all surprised,” said Nancy Woodland, Executive Director at WestSide Baby. “After reaching out to extend our gratitude, we never heard back but continued to be thrilled. When we learned just weeks later over a phone call that he had left $425,000 to WestSide Baby along with other large gifts to other fantastic children’s nonprofits, the tears were flowing.” …
WestSide Baby will use the gift to purchase basic items urgently needed by families this winter in addition to growing programs to reach more children in 2019. “We feel a great responsibility to ensure Alan’s gift best supports families and children in our region getting the tangible items they need to live healthy and happy lives. We are so grateful.”
In case you missed the announcement last weekend, you have a fun chance to help WestSide Baby by attending a free screening of “Mary Poppins Returns” this Saturday (January 5th) – here’s how.
With nine days left until the Alaskan Way Viaduct closes forever for the tunnel transition, the countdown is revving up. We’re just back from a media briefing in SODO at one of the two 99 ramps that will close this Friday – a week before the Viaduct itself – for transition work to begin. What’s new: WSDOT has released videos that try to more clearly answer the persistent questions about how getting into and out of downtown will work after the transition. Two of the clips are particularly relevant to West Seattle – first, how you’ll get into downtown from NB 99:
Second, here’s how you’ll get to SB 99 to get out of downtown:
(The other two new videos are linked here.) For months, WSDOT has been warning that the new Dearborn ramp into downtown from NB 99 won’t be ready for another two weeks or so after the tunnel opens. But when we previewed the video about getting into downtown, we noticed it says the ramp should open after “a week or so.” We asked project deputy administrator Dave Sowers about that at today’s briefing.
He acknowledged that finishing the new ramp could take as little as five extra days of work post-tunnel opening. We recorded the entire 15-minute briefing on video and will add it here when it’s uploaded. (Added 1:55 pm – here it is:)
Other highlights: Sowers said WSDOT is ready to go for the tunnel transition work. If all goes well, the tunnel could open right after the weekend of “goodbye/hello” celebrations February 2-3, Sowers said, possibly that Sunday evening. … The Atlantic and Royal Brougham ramp closures that take effect this Friday night (10 pm January 4th) will mostly affect those who live and work in SODO – 23,000 vehicles a day use the ramps. “There’s a fair amount of work we need to get ahead,” Sowers said, starting with removal of the geofoam that’s under the soon-to-be-closed ramps, revealing more of the permanent northbound tunnel onramp.
SIDE NOTE: Today’s briefing was WSDOT only, and focused on the tunnel transition work itself, not getting around during it. We will be covering a city-led briefing about the latter tomorrow, so if you still have questions about that, let us know and we’ll do our best to get them answered!
Today is the first full day of business for Zoe Lyn Kritzer‘s new shop Youngstown Coffee Co. at 5214 Delridge Way SW, but you might know her already from her past West Seattle gigs. We contacted Zoe after neighbor Kate tipped us about seeing the new shop in soft-open mode on New Year’s Day at the former Daily Dose space. Zoe tells us:
My desire to start a coffee shop in West Seattle began when I was 18 and I started working at Uptown Espresso on SW Edmunds St. I have continued to fall in love with the community of West Seattle as I made my residence permanent a few years back and juggled four jobs, two of which allowed me even more exposure to the best of the West; Ma’ono and Uptown Espresso. I am beyond excited to create a space where every person that walks in the door feels like they can be unabashedly themselves and leaves at least a bit better off than when they entered; satiated mentally, physically, and emotionally. My shop is centered on building the beautiful community of Delridge and bringing together people from every walk of life through interpersonal communication and connection.
A big question for coffee shops is always “what are you serving?”
I’m partnering with Victrola for my beans. I grew up on Cap Hill, going to their original shop on 15th; it’s where I began my love affair with coffee and I still think they make the best coffee in Seattle. They also have one of the most supportive, intelligent, ethical, and just generally wonderful team of coffee professionals.
I’m also featuring Friday Afternoon Teas. Friday, the owner of the tea company, is a true tea artist and scientist. Her teas are unlike anything I’ve ever tasted or smelled. She uses a combination of ethically sourced fruit, herbs, and spices to create unique and intoxicating blends.
Lastly, I serve pastries from my innovative and mastermind bakers down at Macrina. They deliver tantalizing treats daily for the fantastic folks of West Seattle to snack on with their craft coffee.
Youngstown Coffee Co.’s hours are 5 am-6 pm weekdays, 7 am-3 pm Saturdays and Sundays.
(Pileated Woodpecker, photographed by Mark Wangerin)
Options for the first non-holiday of the new year, from the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar:
SCHOOL’S STILL OUT, SO … all-ages Lego Disaster Island might save somebody in your household from boredom! Legos and Duplos provided. 3-4:30 pm at High Point Library. (3411 SW Raymond)
RUN! First free Wednesday group run of the year at West Seattle Runner (WSB sponsor) – meet at the shop at 6:15 pm. (2743 California SW)
2019’S FIRST COMMUNITY MEETING: Resolved to dive into more community involvement this year? Here’s one way to start: Be at the Southwest District Council meeting, 6:30 pm at the Senior Center/Sisson Building. Agenda details are in our calendar listing. (4217 SW Oregon)
MUSIC AT THE COFFEEHOUSE: Live music at C & P Coffee Company (WSB sponsor) with singer-songwriter Jim Page, 7-9 pm. No cover. (5612 California SW)
LOOK INTO THE FUTURE … via our complete calendar. Send listings to email@example.com – thank you!
6:43 AM: Good morning! The holidays are over but holiday vacations aren’t – school isn’t back in session for most (if not all) until next Monday, for example.
METRO TODAY: Again today, buses are on “reduced weekday” service.
#REALIGN99 COUNTDOWN: This Friday night (January 4th) at 10 pm, the on- and off-ramps in the stadium zone close — first big changes, one week before the Alaskan Way Viaduct’s permanent closure. We’ll be covering media briefings each of the next two days, so if you have lingering questions, ask (in comments or text/email) so we can seek answers!
Two reader reports in West Seattle Crime Watch tonight:
STOLEN CR-V: From Rich:
2 men entered the garage at 5001 California Ave SW at 11:46 on Dec. 31st.
They attempted to steal a van by breaking the ignition lock but only managed to steal the handicap hang tag.
They checked out a few other vehicles before settling on a green 1998 Honda CR-V (WA License 220VQN). They backed the Honda into the vehicle that was blocking it in order to gain room to maneuver out of the parking space.
If you see the car, call 911.
STOLEN PURSE & MORE: From Sophie:
Last night on NYE, somebody stole my red Kate Spade purse at a party on Beach Drive. In it was a matching red Kate Spade wallet, two pairs of Ray Bans, my car keys, house key, and some other important items.
If you happened to spot it discarded or otherwise, we can connect you. We’ll also add the police report # as soon as we get it.
Thanks to Alex for sending that view of 2019’s first West Seattle sunset, as seen from Lincoln Park! Though New Year’s Eve (as shown here) and Day both featured beautiful, serene end-of-day views, there’s blustery weather in the forecast – Wednesday night, Thursday, and Friday all are expected to be breezy (no alerts in our area so far, though).
The new year has brought a stack of business changes we’ll be reporting on as the week continues. First, TouchTech Systems has left its Junction space along the enclosed breezeway on the west side of California between Oregon and California. Still in business – just not keeping an office space, explains proprietor Brian Presser: “With our lease up for renewal, we decided that TouchTech can provide the same services without a physical presence in the Junction. We hope all of our customers that we have built relationships with over the last 11 years will continue to use us for their technology needs!” Thanks to the reader who texted us the photo of the sign in the ex-TouchTech window.
15 minutes before hundreds ran in and out of Puget Sound for this year’s Alki Beach New Year’s Day Polar Bear Swim, organizer Mark Ufkes hollered that the water was warmer than the air – 46 degrees and 36 degrees respectively.
Did you notice the fireboat in the background in that clip? Here’s what it did after most were out of the water:
— West Seattle Blog (@westseattleblog) January 1, 2019
Of course there were plenty of sights on the beach – hats and masks, for example:
Or declaration of Rose Bowl allegiance:
Organizer Mark sported closer-to-home college gear (plus the pink trunks he explained in his announcement of the event):
He also brought TSA-auction-bought corkscrews again for pink-wearing swimmers:
But for many, it was all about the thrill and the chill …
… with a bonfire awaiting some as a reward.
P.S. This year brings a second “polar” swim to Alki – as we reported last month, the Special Olympics of Washington Polar Plunge fundraiser is returning to West Seattle waters for the first time since 2011. February 9th is the date and they’re hoping for a sizable enough turnout to set a record.
2018 2019! Here’s information you might find helpful on this New Year’s Day, interspersed with photos from the midnight fireworks (THANK YOU to everyone who sent photos!)
NEW YEAR’S DAY WALKS: Emerald City Wanderers are hosting 5- and 10-kilometer walks in West Seattle, sanctioned by the American Volkssport Association, noncompetitive. Start any time between 9 am and noon from St. John the Baptist Episcopal Church. Routes go through North Admiral, with 10K walkers heading down to Jack Block Park. Hot soup and snacks! (3050 California SW)
NEW YEAR’S DAY ALKI POLAR BEAR SWIM: 10 am sharp on the beach across from Duke’s – you’re advised to be there by 9:45. Here’s the original announcement. (57th SW/Alki SW)
NEW YEAR’S DAY FITNESS: Yoga and Nia classes this morning! See our Holiday Guide for info.
RESTAURANTS THAT TOLD US THEY WOULD BE OPEN TODAY: Here’s our list – with the annual caveat that some establishments may have changed their plan since we called, so if you discover a discrepancy, please let us know – thank you!
TRANSIT/TRANSPORTATION INFO: Sunday schedule for Metro today … No Water Taxi service … Sound Transit Express buses are on Sunday schedules … Washington State Ferries‘ Fauntleroy-Vashon-Southworth run is on its regular weekday schedule … No charge for street parking in neighborhoods where the city has pay stations.
TRASH/RECYCLING: No pickup today, and everyone’s schedule slides a day again this week, same as last week.
SEATTLE PARKS FACILITIES: Here’s the list from Parks – what’s closed, what’s open.
HOLIDAY LIGHTS AND OTHER INFO FOR TODAY/TONIGHT … see the WSB West Seattle Holiday Guide.
7:12 AM: A Seattle Fire “full response” is headed to a house in the 9200 block of 17th SW, described in radio communication as “derelict” and known to be used by squatters.
7:17 AM: Firefighters have arrived and entered, reporting “light smoke” throughout the house.
7:21 AM: Per scanner, a “pile of cigarettes (is) on fire in the fireplace” and it’s “tapped,” so most responding units will be dismissed.
7:30 PM: Our crew is there and confirms the response is winding down. Photo added.