West Seattle, Washington
Will there be sports in spring? Hard to say, but volunteer league organizers have to be ready, and that’s why they’re opening registration. The first announcement we’ve received is from Southwest Little League. You can register online now, or in person next month at two masked/distanced events, noon-2 pm February 6th and 13th, both at the “little log cabin” at Steve Cox Memorial Park in White Center (1321 SW 102nd). You can check a prospective player’s division eligibility here. If you have questions, firstname.lastname@example.org is the league’s email address.
(Thursday night photo by Carolyn Newman, looking across Elliott Bay)
Welcome to Saturday! Aside from windy and wet weather, here’s what’s scheduled today:
ALKI BEACH COMMUNITY CLEANUP: 10 am-2 pm, join Jessica in cleaning up the Alki Beach vicinity. Details are in our preview from earlier this week, including how to contact her to RSVP (not mandatory).
GET FIT, WEST SEATTLE: 10 am, live online, get started with the free West Seattle Runner (WSB sponsor) couch-to-half-marathon fitness program for beginners!
SCOUTS RECYCLING TREES: Happening in Burien, but the troop specifically reached out to invite West Seattleites too – you can drop off your Christmas tree (not flocked) with Scouts for a suggested $5 donation, 9 am-4 pm. (920 SW 150th)
GRAND OPENING: Fogue Gallery invites you to visit its new “not retiring, inspiring” expansion space at 4130 California SW, starting at noon.
This week, “Diver Laura” James has been taking us along on an underwater cleanup odyssey off Seacrest, her continuation of the “Great Battery Roundup,” a project begun nine years ago. Her video above and report below chronicle how things went on this New Year’s Day:
What better way to start off the New Year than doing some good for our shared oceans! I can’t thank my dive buddies enough for coming out and sharing this dive!
We were able to remove not 6 but 8 batteries from the debris of the Honeybear wreckage in cove 2. All 8 are now up in the freshwater lens intertidal zone in preparation to be moved up into the shallow shallows on one of our king tides and then removed from the water and taken to West Seattle business Seattle Iron and Metals Corporation’s recycling facility.
Looking at the tides, we should be able to manage that over the next few days. If you dive cove 2 in the meantime, yes, there is a herd of batteries on the far side of the cove at the base of the riprap.
Huge thanks to Lamont Granquist for his epic camera skills and Michael McGoldrick for his excellent lighting! (and the intrepid sea lion who joined us)
Donations for the project can be made through Sustainable West Seattle.
Diver Laura’s previous two reports are here and here.
It’s now been 44 weeks since the Friday night announcement of the first King County case of COVID-19. Here’s what’s new:
2 DAYS’ WORTH OF KING COUNTY NUMBERS: The Public Health daily-summary page explains why no update was posted Thursday, before getting to a 2-day dose of stats:
*63,299 people have tested positive, 1,907 more than Wednesday’s total
*1,091 people have died, 9 more than Wednesday’s total
*4,194 people have been hospitalized, 78 more than Wednesday’s total
*750,194 people have been tested, 9,358 more than Wednesday’s total
One week ago, those totals were 59,831/1,043/3,983/726,744.
STATEWIDE NUMBERS: See them here.
WORLDWIDE NUMBERS: 83.9 million cases, 1,827,000+ deaths – see the nation-by-nation numbers here.
TEST SITE REOPENS: After a holiday closure, the West Seattle COVID-19 testing site at Southwest Athletic Complex (2801 SW Thistle) reopens Saturday. Registration for a testing time starts here, depending on whether you have symptoms.
GOT INFO OR PHOTOS? email@example.com or text/voice 206-293-6302 – thank you!
Though the West Seattle Bridge Community Task Force plans to continue meeting, the other advisory group convened by the city after the bridge’s closure has disbanded. SDOT has announced that the Technical Advisory Panel met for the last time in mid-December. Its post also listed the full roster of TAP members:
Stephen Dickenson, PhD, PE, DPE, New Albion Geotechnical, Inc.
Gregg A. Freeby, PE, American Segmental Bridge Institute (ASBI)
Reggie Holt, PE, Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), Office of Bridges and Structures FHWA Headquarters, Washington DC
Debbie D. Lehmann, PE, Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) Washington Division Office
Barbara Moffat, PE, SE, Stantec
Scott Phelan, PhD, PE, SE, David Evans and Associates, Inc
Professor John F. Stanton, University of Washington
Adolph Furtado, PE, Lin & Associates, Inc.
Furtado is the only member who wasn’t on the roster announced in May. The TAP’s meetings, unlike the Community Task Force’s meetings, were not open to the public. One other difference: The TAP members were paid, while the CTF members are not. Among other key findings along the way, the TAP issued a memo in July affirming SDOT’s June take that the bridge seemed fixable. What was determined in the ensuing months, before Mayor Jenny Durkan‘s November announcement that repairs would be pursued, was that they were feasible as well as possible.
With so many new readers finding WSB this past year – readership was up almost 50 percent in 2020 over a recordsetting 2019 – we’re thinking we should re-introduce some of the site’s features now and then. So here’s the first installment: Lost + Found, pets and non-pets, and how to use the two features … plus an added option.
LOST & FOUND PETS: This page has been a WSB staple since 2008, the only peninsula-wide place to post a lost or found pet. The page is here. If you lose or find a pet in West Seattle (we’ll include White Center or South Park on request), please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with description, contact info (phone number is best), photo if available, and we will post it. When you tell us there’s been a reunion, we’ll update to mark the listing “reunited.”
LOST & FOUND, NON-PETS: We added this section a few years ago at readers’ request. Lose or find keys, jewelry, a sweater, or … ? You can see the posts by going here. This is a self-post section in the WSB Community Forums, so it requires a login – if you don’t have one, you can get one by using the box on the right sidebar if you’re on desktop/laptop/tablet, and by going here if you’re on a phone. (You can also use your WSB Forums login for posting in the other sections, such as posting a free job listing, but no login is required for reading.)
LOST/FOUND ITEM THAT WAS PROBABLY STOLEN AND DUMPED: If you find something that is unlikely to have been simply lost/misplaced – purse, bicycle, etc. – we usually include those in West Seattle Crime Watch, so please email us the info (and photo if available) although you are welcome to post on the Lost & Found page too.
Thanks to everybody who’s used these features over the years! We’re planning on a couple more WSB FYIs this holiday weekend.
As noted earlier this week, you’re supposed to cut your tree into 4-foot lengths before taking it out to the curb. Don’t want to do that? You can take it to the transfer station. Or – an added option that just landed in the WSB inbox today, requiring a trip south:
Scout Troop Christmas Tree Recycling, January 2 & 3
January 2, 2021 – January 3, 2021
9 am-4 pm
Burien Eagles, 920 SW 150th Street
Local Scout Troop 375/8375 will be holding the annual Christmas Tree Recycle the weekend of Jan. 2 & 3, 2021. Bring your tree to their recycling station at the FOE Burien Eagles Lodge parking lot, located behind the Countryside Café (map). No flocked trees please. Suggested donation $5
P.S. You can recycle your lights too – here’s how.
(Alki photos by Jerry Simmons)
You might want to get out and check your nearest storm drain while it’s still (semi-)light outside. A lot more rain is on the way, says the National Weather Service, and wind too – up to 3 inches on Saturday night with wind gusting as high as 40 mph out of the south. The ground’s already saturated, leading to an NWS alert about landslide risk, too. (ADDED 4:27 PM: Now there’s a Wind Advisory alert for Saturday, too.)
And if you’re near the shore – add “king tides” to all this …
Morning high tides are 12.5-12.6 for the next five mornings, at 7:56 am Saturday, 8:31 am Sunday, 9:08 am Monday, 9:46 am Tuesday, and 10:25 am Wednesday. (The tide will be even higher January 13-15, but it’s too soon to know what the weather will be like then; those will be the highest tides until next December.)
We went to Alki around 10 am to check on two polar bear-themed events:
That’s Polar Bear Swim organizer Mark Ufkes, relaxing between countdown requests. As announced earlier this week, no all-at-once plunge this year but he encouraged people to come down in small groups. He said the early going – starting around 9 am – totaled around 100 people, some requesting a countdown, some not. Nobody while we were there but via Twitter, Bill Schrier caught a few:
Polar Bear swim at Alki Beach on Puget Sound isn’t quite the same this year but hardy souls are still doing it. @westseattleblog pic.twitter.com/9yfxe13g4h
— Bill Schrier (@billschrier) January 1, 2021
Further west, by Alki Bathhouse, the (unrelated) West Seattle Polar Bear Challenge drop-off food drive was going well:
If you missed the dropoff, check the WSPBC map for a display with a food bin near you – today’s the official last day – or go here to see how to support the West Seattle Food Bank year-round.
(No Space Needle fireworks photo again this year, so how about an illuminated champagne inflatable? Photo courtesy Claire)
Day 1 of a brand-new year! In keeping with WSB holiday tradition, we start the day with information you might find helpful:
OPEN/CLOSED TODAY: We’ve found in recent years that closures are far fewer on New Year’s Day than Thanksgiving and Christmas, so we don’t have a restaurant list for this holiday. But we do have a few notes – WSB coffee sponsor C & P Coffee Company is definitely open today, 8 am-4 pm (5612 California SW, service at the rear window) … It’s opening day for new plant-based restaurant Allyum, with takeout brunch 11 am-3 pm … Only one West Seattle grocery store is closed today, Trader Joe’s.
NEW YEAR’S DAY TRANSPORTATION INFO:
*Metro is on the Sunday schedule
*No Water Taxi service
*Sound Transit light rail and buses on the Sunday schedule
*Washington State Ferries‘ Fauntleroy-Vashon-Southworth run is on its regular weekday schedule
*No charge for parking today on city streets in neighborhoods with pay stations
*Traffic cameras: West Seattle-relevant ones here; citywide views are available via this SDOT map
*No trash/recycling/etc. pickup today – if you have Friday pickup, it’ll happen tomorrow instead
*Seattle Parks sites’ status for today
*Seattle Public Libraries services are suspended today
Alki Beach Polar Bear Swim – It’s a staggered, distanced, all-day plan this year, as detailed here.
West Seattle Polar Bear Challenge food drive – Whether or not you’re going in the water, stop (or drive) by the Alki Bathhouse (60th/Alki) 9 am-11 am to donate food as the WSPBC wraps up.
‘Finding the Story Stones’ – Starting today, Save The Stone Cottage invites you to participate in the first of four family-friendly contests – details here.
If you see/hear news, please text/call 206-293-6302 – we appreciate your tips 24/7/366!
How are you planning to spend your New Year’s Day? “Diver Laura” James will be under water, continuing the Great Battery Roundup. We featured her prep dive earlier this week, and the work continued on New Year’s Eve. She sent the video above and report below:
Removing derelict batteries from the debris field of boat wreckage in one of the most dove sites in Puget Sound: The “Honeybear” sunk decades ago due to disrepair; it was a cabin cruiser and it has since rotted away almost to the core. The decking degraded to the point where we could see the ‘house batteries’ for the boat. On dive 1 we removed the decking; (on Thursday_ we moved the first battery, preparing to pull it from water and take to Seattle Iron and Metals Corporation, a metal recycling facility. (Today) we will hopefully remove the remaining 5 from the debris pile. Volunteers are welcome, both shore support and underwater (but you have to be certified and comfortable diving in our chilly emerald sea). Donations for the project can be made to Sustainable West Seattle.
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