West Seattle, Washington
Love hats? Or, got someone on your gift list who does? West Seattle author Mark Elliott has just published “The Brim and the Crown: A Field Guide to Custom Hatters and Hat Shops in the US and Abroad.” Here’s what he tells us about it:
Amazon just published the 144-page softcover ($18.95) this past week.
* The book divides the US into six regions (36 states), each with profiles, websites, and online ordering info for the best custom hat makers for classic fedoras or cowboy hats.
* An entire chapter identifying custom hat makers in 19 countries.
* A separate chapter where to order a custom hat of your favorite film noir or Western film hero.
* Another chapter describing the women-owned hat businesses in the US.
* How and where to get 1930s newsboy caps, Ecuadorian Panamas, top hats, Indiana Jones fedoras, Godfather homburgs, Amish flat hats, and coonskin and Civil War caps, etc.
This book is for someone who loves hats. Someone who doesn’t leave home without one come rain or shine; who follows the seasons for felt and straw; who can tell you their hat size in inches and centimeters; and who knows how to crease a hat and wear it with confidence.
Mark adds, “I spent most of this year researching, interviewing, and writing. It’s the first time all this info has been collated and published.”
With a lot of light-viewing likely this weekend, we’re stepping up to two featured displays per night. Tonight – two set to music!
In Gatewood, Mark and Jo are again presenting Austin Street Christmas Lights – here’s a sample:
They explain, “We have a number of songs synced to music – just tune your car radio to 100.9 as you get close, and you’ll hear the music. This year, we added some new spotlights that make the house even more colorful, and a button to hear the music from the sidewalk. We’ll have the music on from 4 pm to 10 pm. You can find us on SW Austin Street between 37th and 39th.” [map]
Meantime, Brian tells us about a display in the 3800 block of 36th SW [map] and sent the link to this:
Brian says, “My neighbor has a great musical Christmas light show set up. Music is playing on FM 99.5.”
Finally an answer to the question of where Alki Lumber will move when its West Seattle Triangle site is redeveloped: South Park. The Sweeney family, which has owned the lumberyard for a century, has sold the business to South Park-based Marine Lumber. We talked late today with Lynn Sweeney, after learning via a tip that Alki Lumber was notifying customers about the change. The Sweeneys have been looking for a new site for the lumberyard for two years, after deciding to redevelop its current site and some of their other properties; the two-building megaproject has just finished going through Design Review (as covered here and here). She says they were focusing on South Park as a likely new home when, independent of their search, Marine Lumber reached out to them. After discussions, Sweeney said, “we just decided to combine” – something, she said, has been happening a lot in their industry. The deal closed this week.
Here’s what it means in the near future: Alki Lumber will continue operating at its current West Seattle location, with the same staff, under the same name, until it’s time to clear out (which is not imminent, given the time required for permits and other preparations). We’ll be following up with Marine Lumber about their future plans – this news came too late in the day to do that immediately. Sweeney says all this is “exciting” but also, for her family, “bittersweet.” Alki Lumber was founded by her great-grandfather James A. Sweeney in 1921. The family maintains ownership of the land, so for now, they’ll remain the lumberyard’s “landlord,” as Sweeney put it. It’s been almost three years since the Sweeneys announced they were studying “alternatives” for their property’s future.)
4:17 PM: Second big announcement from Mayor-elect Bruce Harrell: Sam Zimbabwe is out as SDOT director. Just received:
Today, Seattle Mayor-elect Bruce Harrell released the following statement:
“Today, I am announcing that when I take office in January, I will be making a change in Seattle Department of Transportation leadership. We will embark on a robust national search for a new director who is aligned with my vision for this critical department. As we embark on that search, I will appoint SDOT Chief of Staff Kristen Simpson to serve as interim director. Kristen has let me know that she will not be applying for the permanent position.
“Going forward, my vision is for a Seattle Department of Transportation that centers equity throughout our transportation network across every street and sidewalk, in every neighborhood and community. We must create a balanced transportation ecosystem – increasing safety and decreasing travel times by bolstering transit, improving sidewalks, protecting bike lanes, and recognizing the role of cars and new electric vehicles.
“From Vision Zero to net zero, we will prioritize climate resilience and lead at the intersections of accessibility, reliability, safety, and sustainability.
“I want to thank Director Zimbabwe for his service and dedication to the City of Seattle. His leadership and quick action closing the West Seattle Bridge no doubt saved lives and has put the bridge on track to open in mid-2022. His response to the pandemic – thoughtful and meaningful efforts like Stay Healthy Streets and outdoor dining permits – should be celebrated. I wish him all the best in the future.”
Outgoing Mayor Jenny Durkan hired Zimbabwe three years ago, one year into her term. He had previously worked in Washington, D.C.
5:40 PM: Adding more backstory – The previous SDOT director, Scott Kubly, left a year before Durkan announced she was hiring Zimbabwe. Kubly, also from D.C., had the SDOT job for three and a half years. Between the two, Goran Sparrman served as interim director, a role he also filled before the arrival of Kubly, succeeding Peter Hahn, who left toward the end of the McGinn administration.
With Christmas Eve one week away, Santa will soon have to focus on preps back up at the North Pole, so today is one of your last chances for photo ops. Until 6 pm, he’s at HomeStreet Bank in The Junction (4022 SW Alaska; WSB sponsor), all welcome to stop by for DIY pics – and cookies.
Bring a nonperishable-food donation for the West Seattle Food Bank if you can! (See the rest of Santa’s pre-Christmas schedule in our West Seattle Holiday Guide.)
A break-in at the vacant health-clinic building at 3400 California SW (past Swedish, future Virginia Mason Franciscan) resulted in loss/damage estimated at ~$250,000, according to the police report. We requested the report after noting a “commercial burglary” logged in the area this past Wednesday. The report says police were called to investigate on Wednesday afternoon; the burglary had happened sometime since the building was last checked a week or so earlier, possibly early that morning, when a fire alarm was activated. On Wednesday afternoon, the investigating officer was shown “areas around the building with extensive damage and removal of copper wire and plumbing. The believed method of access was the forced removal of Seattle Fire Department keys from keyboxes attached to exterior walls. Multiple boxes were removed and presumably forced open to remove the keys and gain access to the building. Ceiling panels were torn down and copper plumbing had been cut and removed. Multiple electrical panels had been torn open and wires cut and removed.” Police also noted, “It appeared the burglars were drinking from bottles of Angry Orchard cider while they were inside the clinic,” leaving a bottle behind, so that was taken into evidence to test for fingerprints.
Today we welcome a new WSB sponsor – locally owned Duke’s Seafood at Alki Beach. Here’s their message for you:
People often ask, why come to Duke’s Seafood over any other seafood restaurant in town and our answer is simple, because we know where nearly every ingredient in our food come from. Most restaurants can’t say that, but why should you care?
Partners and father/son, Duke Moscrip (right) and John Moscrip (left), and our Executive Chef, Wild Bill Ranniger, personally source the ingredients in the food we serve – yes, really – and it is local when possible, sustainable, free of harmful chemicals and preservatives, and gluten-free when possible.
Why do we go to this extreme? “Decades ago, I started going to Alaska and I actually fished with the fishermen, not just tour a processing plant. I actually wanted to know how they caught the fish, what they did after they caught them, like did they take care of them, bleed this fish, ice the fish, and keep them cold all the way through the processing. I found out that not every fisherman does it right. So, we only buy from the people who handle the fish the way that we want and to our strict standards, and as a result, we get the most incredible fish,” says Duke Moscrip.
“That’s when I started my quest to only buy from trusted suppliers who understood the proper way to care for fish. I didn’t know it back then, but the standards we set back then are now the industry standards for all quality commercial fishing. True story!,” he adds. “There I was, just one guy who only wanted one thing: great-tasting fish, only to end up setting the standard for the industry.”
We did not stop at fish. We go to the produce fields, the chicken farms, the wineries, even to our exclusive Bourbon supplier, Woodford Reserve. Everything we serve must meet our strict standards to be good enough for Duke’s Seafood or it doesn’t make it onto your plate – ever! Plus, every dish is so flavorful because of the ingredients and the special recipes we developed for Duke’s Seafood.
“I dream about food,” says Duke. He describes flavorful dishes made of crazy combinations: blueberries with goat cheese on grilled salmon, or tarragon and citrus in a salad, or hazelnut syrup, melted butter, and halibut encrusted with crushed macadamia nuts. “In fact, sometimes I drive my Executive Chef, Wild Bill, crazy by sending new dishes back again and again until we get it right. We spend hours and hours in the kitchen together perfecting every recipe.”
“’Wild’ Bill Ranniger is the executive chef; an amazing guy. “He puts up with all my crazy ideas. For the past 23 years, he’s made stuff happen in our kitchens. He’s inventive and creative and we get along so well from a creative standpoint as well as being good friends. But he produces amazing food,” says Duke.
Duke’s Seafood is offering a very special deal through January 22, 2022: Spend $50 and get $10 off your meal. Spend $100 and get $20 off your meal. Reserve today at www.dukesseafood.com.
We thank Duke’s Seafood for sponsoring independent, community-collaborative neighborhood news via WSB; find our current sponsor team listed in directory format here, and find info on joining the team by going here.
Did you catch that window of light in the southwest sky just before 5 pm last night? Even before the winter solstice arrives on Tuesday, sunsets are getting later – 4:18 pm today. Meantime, here are highlights for the hours ahead, from the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar and Holiday Guide:
SANTA AT HOMESTREET BANK: 3-6 pm, visit the HomeStreet Bank (WSB sponsor) West Seattle branch at 4022 SW Alaska to meet Santa and get a DIY photo.
BEER & CHOCOLATE: At Best of Hands Barrelhouse (7500 35th SW), which is open 3-10 pm today: “We will be offering curated flights of chocolate and beer pairings featuring local independent producer, Chocolate Spiel. These will be available for a flat rate and no substitutions available, though we will have chocolate on hand if you’d like to make your own pairing.”
‘IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE’: Second weekend for Twelfth Night Productions‘ holiday-season production “It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Show” with an original short by John Ruoff, “The Case of the Missing Snowman.” at historic Kenyon Hall, 7:30 pm. Tickets are available online at twelfthnightproductions.org or at Kenyon Hall (7904 35th SW), starting an hour before the show.
LIVE MUSIC – DA/D RELOADED: Be at The Skylark (3803 Delridge Way SW) for the West Seattle rock ‘n’ roll event of the season:
Are we missing anything? 206-293-6302 text/voice if it’s urgent, email@example.com for something in the days/weeks ahead – thank you!
A supercharged DA/D lineup returns to West Seattle! Delivering hard rock hits and deep cuts from your FM radio memory bank straight to the stage. For people who think the term “dad rock” is a compliment, and fans of stadium-sized riffs and thunderous grooves. AC/DC to Alice In Chains, Van Halen to Velvet Revolver, Rage Against the Machine to Ratt. We can smash the patriarchy later, right now it’s time to rock.
Just weeks after the end of the biggest spawning season in nine years on Fauntleroy Creek, the Salmon in Schools program is starting another year. Teachers whose classes raise salmon for spring releases picked up eggs this week, distributed by longtime program volunteers Judy Pickens and Phil Sweetland. Pickens explains:
Coho eggs arrived early for the 10 West Seattle schools participating in Salmon in the Schools this term. Schools normally get their eggs the first week of January, but warm water at the state’s Soos Creek Hatchery caused eggs to develop more quickly. Teachers and volunteers scrambled to settle their eggs in cold aquarium water before leaving for the two-week winter break. Students can expect to return from break to find alevin absorbing the food that sustains them for their first few weeks of life.
Students will help care for their fish while learning about salmon biology, habitat, and culture, then release them in upper Fauntleroy Creek in May. Habitat in the lower creek will be reserved for “home hatch” left by the 244 spawners that came in several weeks ago.
In our second photo above, Our Lady of Guadalupe School‘s Kelsey Fish is one of the teachers who stopped by to pick up salmon eggs. Other participating schools include Louisa Boren STEM K-8, Gatewood Elementary, Pathfinder K-8, Roxhill Elementary, Sanislo Elementary, Westside School (WSB sponsor), Fauntleroy Children’s Center, Cove School, and A Child Becomes.
6:02 AM Good morning!
Rain’s not expected before evening; today’s high is expected to be in the low-to-mid-40s.
-Today’s the last day of school before winter break.
-This Sunday will be the first of five with short low-bridge closures for testing preceding next year’s repair work – here are details.
-No other major road work is planned this weekend, SDOT says.
BUSES, WATER TAXI, FERRIES
Metro is on its regular weekday schedule. Watch @kcmetrobus for word of trip cancellations.
BRIDGES AND DETOUR ROUTES
634th morning without the West Seattle Bridge. Here are views of other bridges and routes:
Low Bridge: Automated enforcement cameras remain in use; restrictions are in effect 5 am-9 pm daily – except weekends; the bridge is open to all until 8 am Saturday and Sunday mornings. (Access applications are available here for some categories of drivers.)
The 1st Avenue South Bridge (map):
South Park Bridge:
West Marginal Way at Highland Park Way:
Highland Park Way/Holden:
The 5-way intersection (Spokane/West Marginal/Delridge/Chelan):
Trouble on the streets/paths/bridges/water? Please let us know – text (but not if you’re driving!) 206-293-6302.