West Seattle, Washington
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
The conventional way to accept an award is to offer gracious words of gratitude.
The honorees at this year’s West Seattle Food Bank “Instruments of Change” gala turned the tables – accepting their award by presenting one to the WSFB itself, even creating a trophy for the occasion.
The gala was a hybrid event Saturday night, both online and in person at the Seattle Design Center in SODO. The online components were more than just a livestream; auctioneer Ian Lindsay did his work virtually, and even those attending in-person placed live-auction bids via their phones. Before the auction has ended, bidding had helped push the night’s proceeds past the $125,000 goal set to support the WSFB’s work fighting food and housing insecurity.
The Instruments of Change Award honorees were North Delridge residents Jillian Moore and Jeremy Vrablik, spouses who own Cascadia Produce. We introduced you to them back in February, reporting on the emergency food boxes they prepared for distribution each week, and a plan to support local Girl Scout troops by buying hundreds of boxes of cookies to add to what they were supplying. That was something extra for emergency-food recipients – and last night’s turnabout award was something extra for the food bank.
The presentation started conventionally enough. WSFB executive director Fran Yeatts hailed Moore and Vrablik as “superheroes” for helping the food bank meet community needs. They accepted their award exuberantly and then: “You’re the superhero,” countered the recipients-turned-presenters. “Here’s YOUR award” – and they gave Yeatts this trophy:
It was a room full of heroes, in person and online. WSFB board president David Weld reminded attendees that needing help “is not a choice” – instead, “the choice lies with society as to whether to help these people.” He noted that the largest source of funding for WSFB is “individual cash donations.” Needs rose dramatically during the pandemic, and “we choose … to address those needs.” Beyond the basic food and financial support provided by WSFB, it also administers companion programs including the Clothesline clothing bank and the Backpack Program that sends food home with kids so they don’t go hungry on non-school days – almost 17,000 bags of food a year.
Weld also presented a tribute to “one of the greatest supporters of the West Seattle Food Bank,” the late Rev. Ron Marshall, the First Lutheran Church of West Seattle pastor who died last November at 73. Weld recalled Rev. Marshall’s pride in helping shepherd the WSFB merger with the West Seattle Helpline, completed right before the pandemic.
The night’s theme, repeated throughout the program, was “Neighbors Helping Neighbors,” and that was embodied not only by the attendees and bidders, but by the many local businesses who donated auction items and/or otherwise sponsored the event. (WSB was media sponsor.) As Yeatts reminded them all, contributions not only feed the hungry but also “keep the heat on .. keep the water running … keep clothes on (clients’) backs.” You can support this work throughout the year by donating food and/or money.
The Community Advisory Group convened by Sound Transit for the most-recent planning phase of West Seattle light rail has met for the final time. The meeting this past week was for feedback from the group members, on their preferred routing and station locations as well as on the possible cost-saving ideas ST proposed at their previous meeting. Here’s the recording:
Since the meeting was about feedback, not presentation of proposals, there wasn’t much to the slide deck, but you can see that here. In general, regarding routing and station locations, most participants spoke in favor of as much tunneling as possible, particularly into The Junction. For the Delridge station location, feedback was more mixed, including a few calls for reviving the previously discarded option nicknamed the “purple line” (which would tunnel through Pigeon Point).
Regarding the cost-saving ideas – the idea of saving money by moving the Fauntleroy elevated station option east, avoiding the newly built 4754 Fauntleroy Way SW complex, did not get much traction, mostly because many group members didn’t like the elevated Fauntleroy option regardless of where it would be built. The other big cost-saving idea was potentially dropping the Avalon station. Several reiterated that removing a station should only be an option if West Seattle had something to gain from doing it – like “smart design,” one group member suggested.
WHAT’S NEXT: The ST board members who comprise the System Expansion Committee have a workshop focused on the West Seattle/Ballard extensions 1-3:30 pm Friday (May 20th). Then in July, they and the full board meet about confirming or modifying a “preferred alternative” before going into the final environmental-impact process – the committee on July 14th, the full board on July 28th. The board’s final decision on routing and station locations is expected in what ST now describes as “late 2023.”
Every Sunday, we check countywide and West Seattle COVID stats from the past week. This time, we’ve found that cases are up countywide for an eighth week, again at a slower rate than the previous week; hospitalizations are down; deaths are up. Here are the specifics, from the Public Health – Seattle/King County dashboard:
*9 percent more cases countywide in the past week than the week before
*Currently averaging 1,042 new daily cases countywide (up from 946 when we checked a week ago)
*13 percent fewer hospitalizations countywide in the past week than the week before
*Currently averaging 10 new hospitalizations daily (down from 11 a week ago)
*133 percent more deaths countywide in the past two weeks than the two weeks before (the dashboard doesn’t offer a one-week increment)
*Currently averaging 2 deaths daily (doubling the two-week average from last week)
For West Seattle, we have two-week comparisons (these are the combined totals from two “health reporting areas,” labeled West Seattle and Delridge):
*817 cases between 4/25 and 5/09, up from 514 between 4/10 and 4/24
*8 hospitalizations between 4/25 and 5/09, up from 6 between 4/10 and 4/24
*No deaths between 4/25 and 5/09, same as between 4/10 and 4/24
And checking vaccination rates:
*81 percent of all King County residents have completed the initial series (up .1% from a week ago)
*85.8 percent of all King County residents ages 5 and up have completed the initial series (up .1% from a week ago)
*49 percent of all King County residents have had the initial series plus a booster (up .2% from a week ago)
*In West Seattle, here are the zip-code vaccination rates for ages 5 and up (reminder, 98106 and 98146 are not entirely within WS):
98106 – 88.1% completed initial series (up .1% from a week earlier), 53.1% have had a booster
98116 – 92.9% completed initial series (up .1% from a week earlier), 64.8% have had a booster
98126 – 83.6% completed initial series (up .1% from a week earlier), 54.8% have had a booster
98136 – 93.8% completed initial series (up .1% from a week earlier), 67.9% have had a booster
98146 – 83.1% completed initial series (unchanged from a week earlier), 48% have had a booster
VACCINATION AND TESTING, UPDATED HOURS: The Senior Center of West Seattle is hosting a pop-up clinic noon-5 pm Friday (May 20th) – walk-ins welcome … Look for other vaccination locations via this statewide lookup. If you want to get tested and don’t have a kit at home, public testing sites include the city-supported site at Nino Cantu Southwest Athletic Complex (2801 SW Thistle, 9 am-5:30 pm Mondays-Saturdays) and the Curative kiosk at Don Armeni Boat Ramp (1220 Harbor SW, 9 am-3 pm Monday-Friday). The Curative van at Summit Atlas (35th/Roxbury) does not show any availability this coming week; we’ll be checking on whether it’s on hiatus or discontinued. … If you need to report self-test results, that’s explained on this page.
Big thanks to the photographers who have shared more views of our feathered neighbors, Above, James Tilley photographed a juvenile Bald Eagle and Caspian Tern flyby; below, Matthew Olson found a Marbled Murrelet:
Gene Pavola caught this bird (ID, anyone?) watching the water from a pole perch:
Jim Clark shares another golden view of a duck family at Seola Pond:
This Canada Goose family was on its way to Elliott Bay when photographed by Jerry Simmons:
Away from the water, Jerry also got this pic of a Black-headed Grosbeak:
This photo of a Brown-headed Cowbird is from Gary Jones:
We also feature bird photos some mornings in our daily event lists, so don’t skip those if you enjoyed these. From birds to breaking news, we appreciate pics at email@example.com or (if urgent) 206-293-6302 any time!
You might know Anthony Nelson. He describes himself as “father, son, brother, friend, artist, bartender [at Maharaja], storyteller, and one of the many faces of cancer …” a disease he rues “is doing all it can to take me away from all of that.” But, Anthony adds, “I recently read that each year in America more than 1.6 million people are diagnosed with cancer, and nearly 600,000 will die from it. For once in my life, I am happy to think of myself as one in a million. I choose to be one of the people who live through and get to tell the past tense story about how I beat cancer.” In hopes of helping with that, his friend Morgan pointed us to Anthony‘s crowdfunding page, where he explains:
My worst fear is to be a burden on my community and especially to those I love. Although I have a remarkable support system of people, the realities of cancer (the loss of revenue due to incapacitation and the astronomical expenses associated with the years of anticipated treatment), and the fact we are not made of money, I am faced with either not being able to follow through on what I need to survive or not being able to meet the financial challenges I will accrue. This is why I need your help.
Anthony’s radiation treatments for throat cancer just began Friday, and his GoFundMe page includes an update.
1:35 PM: Thanks to Kersti Muul for the tip. Just as the rain starts to lift, orcas are in the area, northbound past west-facing West Seattle.
1:44 PM: Kersti says in comments that another group is “about 20 minutes behind” this one, including the hard-to-miss “Chainsaw”!
ADDED SUNDAY EVENING: Thanks to Robin Sinner for the photo!
Now on to the second half of the weekend!
CHURCHES WITH ONLINE SERVICES: We’re still listing these – see today’s list here.
WEST SEATTLE FARMERS’ MARKET: 10 am-2 pm, find fresh food – produce, meat, fish, cheese, beverages, baked goods, and prepared food – at the weekly WSFM. (California SW between SW Oregon and SW Alaska)
LOG HOUSE MUSEUM: The Southwest Seattle Historical Society has reopened its museum on Alki, and you can visit noon-4 pm, (61st/Stevens)
SEATTLE BEER WEEK AT OUNCES: Open noon-8 pm today, with beer plus … a mobile spa! (3809 Delridge Way SW)
DRAW A NEW DISTRICT 1: The City Council redistricting process continues with a public forum today for District 1 (West Seattle/South Park), which needs to expand in this process – 1-3 pm at Seattle City Hall or online.
BIRDS, BEATS, BREWS: 1-4 pm Seattle Beer Week event at Beveridge Place Pub (6413 California SW)
NEED FOOD? White Center Community Dinner Church serves a free meal (take-away available) at 5 pm Sundays at the Salvation Army Center in South Delridge (9050 16th SW).
SUNDAY NIGHT KARAOKE: 9 pm to 1:30 am at Admiral Pub (2306 California SW).
LUNAR ECLIPSE: Weather permitting, the lunar eclipse could be visible from here. Skywatching expert Alice Enevoldsen says 9:11 pm would be the peak.
Have an event to list on our calendar? We’re adding more daily – email firstname.lastname@example.org – thank you!