West Seattle, Washington
We told you last week about local service clubs’ West Seattle-wide food drive coming up Saturday, September 10th. Now we know where you’ll be able to donate food that day.
Your donations will be collected by volunteers from the Kiwanis, Lions, and Rotary and the Kiwanis-supported Key Clubs at Chief Sealth IHS and West Seattle HS. They’ll be outside these stores 9 am-1 pm Saturday:
Metropolitan Market (41st/Admiral)
QFC in The Junction (42nd/Alaska)
QFC at Westwood Village
West Seattle Thriftway (California/Fauntleroy)
Trader Joe’s (4545 Fauntleroy Way SW)
As reported here earlier, the Seattle Education Association went on strike first thing this morning. While talks are continuing, at this point it looks like the strike will continue for a second day Thursday. Here’s the information we have so far:
UNION: As of an early-evening statement, SEA says, “The Bargaining Team met with SPS in joint session with the mediator today starting at 10:30 a.m. and continues to make progress. SEA remains united for student supports, reasonable workloads, and respectful pay.” That followed negotiations through much of the night, according to SEA president Jennifer Matter, with whom we spoke at Sanislo Elementary this morning shortly after picketing began. The union statement says: “Unless the district comes to an agreement tonight, the 6,000 Paraprofessionals, Substitutes, Office Professionals, and teachers will be forced to continue the strike and picket again on Thursday from 7:30 – 3:30 pm.” When an agreement is reached, Matter told us, they will be able to call a general meeting “quickly” online to consider it. The union’s bargaining-info page, including a comparison of proposals, is here.
DISTRICT: Seattle Public Schools says that from here on out, it will update families daily by 3 pm. Today’s update, as we noted briefly earlier, officially canceled classes again tomorrow (Thursday, September 8th), which would have been the second day of the 2022-2023 school year. The SPS update also mentions that a mediator is participating: “While we don’t yet have an agreement, both the district and SEA are committed to working on our shared challenges. We are certain that an agreement can be reached that both values educators and serves students.” The district’s bargaining-info page is here.
MEALS: Again tomorrow, the district will offer sack lunches for all students at certain schools. Early this afternoon, we stopped by the Chief Sealth International High School/Denny International Middle School distribution site, which is in the dock area on the east side of the campuses:
The full list of meal sites is on this district webpage.
CITY RESOURCES: The city has published an update on various resources to assist families – see it here. Key point – If needed, starting on Monday, the city will offer eight community centers – two in West Seattle – as “recreation activity hubs”:
Starting Monday, September 12
Hours of operation will be 9:00 am to 5:30 pm at designated centers
Age group 5-12 (school age)
Designated community centers
Offering free recreational programs and activities
Families will be able to register online via ActiveNet starting Thursday, Sept 8th
(Here are the two West Seattle) designated community centers:
Alki Community Center
High Point Community Center
We’ll update if any other information emerges tonight.
Last weekend we reported that Click! Design That Fits (4540 California SW; WSB sponsor) might permanently close if its prospective buyer couldn’t reach agreement with the building’s owner on a new lease. Click! proprietor and co-founder John Smersh has just sent word that a deal was not reached. Here’s his announcement:
It’s official – the potential new owner of Click! has been unable to negotiate a sustainable lease with our landlord, and as such our last day open will be tomorrow, Thursday, September 8th. We will continue to liquidate our remaining inventory and will be offering store fixtures and other items at garage sale prices.
We will be open until 6 pm today (Wednesday) and 11 am-8 pm Thursday, staying late during West Seattle Art Walk for last-minute sales and fond farewells. Thank you to everyone who has been part of the last 18 years with us!
If you’re on the Click! mailing list, John promises “one more email newsletter next week with information on how to stay in touch going forward.” He put the shop on the market in May; it was in The Admiral District for its first six years before moving to The Junction,
Just as the West Seattle Bridge reopens, one of the businesses that’s practically next to it has announced a temporary closure. Just received from Luna Park Café proprietor John Bennett:
We recently have felt the after-effects of Covid and have done our best to stay open as much as possible to serve all our faithful customers. Unfortunately we came to the decision to temporarily close in order to do some much-needed systems updates. We don’t know how long this will take us since we want to be the best we can be when we do reopen!
We will be continuing with our current hours (8 am-3 pm) through Sunday the 18th so we encourage everyone to come see us and order their favorite shake, hobo, or Luna special before we take our break!
We look forward to reopening and having another great 30+-year stint!
Luna Park marked its 33rd anniversary earlier this year.
With a week and a half to go until the scheduled reopening of the West Seattle Bridge, four things to tell you about:
WHAT’S HAPPENING NOW: We asked SDOT if a key final step – load testing – has been taken yet, and what’s happening in general. From spokesperson Ethan Bergerson:
The final load-testing event, which will involve driving specialized heavy trucks over the bridge and measuring how the structure responds, is currently scheduled for Tuesday, September 13. In a sense, load testing has already been occurring for several months now as our intelligent monitoring system has been continuously recording data from the bridge 24/7. The bridge has responded as predicted throughout the repair process, as well as in response to changing weather conditions from the hottest days of summer to the coldest nights this past winter without showing any cause for concern. This ongoing stream of positive data under various extreme conditions gives us a lot of confidence that the final testing event next week will go according to plan.
This week, we are pouring concrete to close the last access points in the bridge deck that were created to allow crews and equipment to get into the bridge’s girders. We also began removing equipment and materials from the construction site that are no longer needed for remaining work activities. We plan to remove a few of the worksite trailers this week, which served as onsite storage facilities and breakrooms for crew members.
Crews are also continuing roadway preparation work to get the corridor ready for vehicles. This work includes pouring concrete for road barrier openings, striping lanes, and replacing guardrails. Permanent inspection platform installation is still underway inside the girders as well.
Meantime, three biznotes looking ahead to the reopening:
COUNTDOWN SIGN: Service businesses with a regional customer base are especially excited about the reopening of the high bridge. O’Neill Plumbing (6056 California SW; WSB sponsor) just moved that sign to its Morgan Junction property, after initially placing it by their Admiral/Avalon sign. Tim O’Neill (pictured) says, “We’ll be in line on the 18th, ready to go!”
COLLABORATIVE BREW: The photo and announcement are from The Beer Junction proprietor Allison Herzog:
To celebrate the opening of the West Seattle Bridge, several members of the West Seattle beer community collaborated on brewing a beer! Reunited is a West Coast IPA brewed at Good Society in collaboration with Beveridge Place Pub, Ounces, The Beer Junction, and Best of Hands Barrelhouse. We are planning to concurrently release our collaboration beer on Sunday, September 18th to coincide with the bridge reopening date and to welcome non-West Seattleites back to our beautiful peninsula. We plan to have the beer on tap all through the week of September 18th through the 24th, so stop by for a pint to celebrate!
PARTY PLAN: Another of those collaborators – the closest one to the bridge, in fact – has announced a party plan! From Ounces (3809 Delridge Way SW) co-proprietor Laurel Trujillo:
WS Bridge Opening Party at Ounces!
Saturday 9/17: 2-9 pm & Sunday, 9/18: 11 am-8 pm
We’re throwing a 2-day event to celebrate the last day on the WS Island and the Opening of the bridge! Woohoo! Event features food trucks, desserts, live music, and so much more! We’ll also be tapping Reunited IPA [explained above]. Event is FREE and family/dog friendly. Full event details and a schedule of events can be found here: ounceswestseattle.com/wsbridgeopen
The Saturday theme will be “Last Day on the Island”; the Sunday theme will be “Welcome (back) to West Seattle.”
Is your business among those doing something special in connection with the bridge reopening? Please send us the info so we can include it in updates like this, as well as our Event Calendar – email@example.com – thank you!
Three West Seattle Crime Watch notes:
DAYTIME CAR PROWL: From Galen, who says this happened around 11:15 this morning:
38th Ave SW and SW Olga St. (Admiral) – Dark gray Toyota Sienna 2010/2016 (3rd generation). I was on my front porch and saw this man pull up and park. Didn’t think anything of it and went into the backyard. My neighbor then watched them because they began acting odd (opened the back of his car and shuffled things around all the while NOT looking at what he was doing but instead looking around the street). Walked over to my minivan and proceeded to look inside rather intently (tinted windows makes it hard to see in) before driving off.
The suspect’s vehicle has Oregon plates starting with 477; Galen described him as, “White male, late 20s, dark hair.”
CATALYTIC-CONVERTER THEFTS: Michelle forwarded this alert from her condo board, saying they’d heard reports of catalytic-converter thefts around Alki, including one Monday night at the Lighthouse Point building. (UPDATE: We also got a texted report today of a cc theft in the 1700 block of Alki SW.)
WEEKEND ROBBERY: Among the SPD report summaries from the long holiday weekend was this one we should note for the record: Just after midnight Sunday morning, a man summoned police to Alki and told them he’d been robbed at gunpoint outside the Harbor Avenue 7-11 about 15 minutes earlier. He said he was approached by two people who asked for a light; one then pointed a handgun at him and demanded his jewelry before they ran away. The report describes the suspects only as “two males,”
9:54 AM: Hours after the Seattle Education Association announced a strike – authorized in a vote announced 12 hours before that – many of its members are out picketing. We stopped at three local schools in the first hour. Above, Sanislo Elementary on Puget Ridge drew TV crews because SEA announced that’s where president Jennifer Matter would be in the early going. We talked with her briefly there; she said negotiations are continuing and had been for much of the night:
The union has dubbed this the “Strike for Student Supports” because a key issue, as Matter noted, is staffing levels as the district moves special education into a more-inclusive model; one of the hand-lettered picket signs on view at Sanislo said the school has a nurse one day a week, From there we went to adjacent Chief Sealth International High School and Denny International Middle School. Sealth picketers walked along busy SW Thistle and drew frequent honks from passing drivers.
To the north, Denny picketers walked a line in a mostly residential neighborhood.
The union says picketing will continue 7:30 am-3:30 pm daily for as long as the strike – their first one since 2015 – lasts. The two sides have been negotiating since early June. Union bargaining info is here; district info is here. We’re headed out to some other West Seattle schools shortly.
11:51 AM: Just back from four more schools. Picketing video from each of the seven schools we’ve gone to this morning is on our Twitter feed at @westseattleblog. Our fourth stop was Alki Elementary:
At Alki we talked with building strike leader Julie Calkins, a fifth-grade teacher who is in her 16th year at the school. “We are feeling unsupported,” she said.
She spoke of issues including the need to keep caseload caps. And yes, salary is an issue, she said, but primarily for the lowest-paid workers in the union, office staff and paraprofessionals – the higher-paid educators are “looking out for” them. She added, “We want to be in our building … (but) we feel we have no choice” but to strike. She encourages people to read information on the SEA website about where they stand.
Next we went to West Seattle High School:
Teacher Jennifer Hall told us she and colleagues had worked through the Labor Day weekend to set up their classrooms so things are ready to go whenever this ends.
She also spoke about the importance of keeping caselaad caps – “if caps are removed, we can’t give the students the services they need” – and the need for more support in areas such as mental health. Hall described WSHS as a “very unified school” where educators are determined to fight for respect. “This isn’t lots of fun.”
From there, to Madison Middle School:
Sixth-grade teacher Kara Kreider – who’s been teaching for 20 years – talked with us about the perception that the district isn’t supporting the priorities it has given voice to. “We’ve had so many district trainings” about inclusion, for example. But teachers feel the contract proposal doesn’t offer support for turning training into reality. Also a concern, collaborative planning time – two hours a month, Kreider said – that would be taken away. “We need inclusion to be done in a thoughtful way.” As with other schools we visited, striking educators had support from students, some there to picket with them.
Before heading back to HQ, we stopped by the West Seattle Elementary interim site at Schmitz Park:
WSES is here for a second year while the addition to their High Point building is completed. … One more photo, texted by Althea, showing the Fairmount Park Elementary strikers:
If the strike continues tomorrow, we’ll visit some of the West Seattle schools we didn’t get to today. We’re continuing to monitor for updates from the two sides regarding bargaining and day-to-day school status – no updates today yet.
4:15 PM: The district says negotiations continue but classes are officially canceled Thursday too. (We’ll have a separate update this evening.)
DROPOFF FOOD DRIVE: Take nonperishable food to Admiral Church (4320 SW Hill), 11 am-1 pm.
LUNCH PICKUP AT SEATTLE PUBLIC SCHOOLS: As noted in coverage last night, Seattle Public Schools will be offering sack lunches for pickup at many schools 10 am-1 pm – the list is on this page. A note for those picking up at Chief Sealth IHS and Denny IMS – “We will be serving lunches off the back dock on the east side of both campuses. (Families/students) can drive through or walk and we will be back there from 10 am to 1 pm.”
SPRAYPARK OPEN: Wading pools have closed for the season but Highland Park Spraypark at 1100 SW Cloverdale will be open 11 am-8 pm.
CLICK! DESIGN THAT FITS LIQUIDATION SALE: As reported here, this shop (WSB sponsor) at 4540 California SW is having a sale while its future is decided. Open 11 am-4 pm today.
MOUNTAIN TO SOUND OUTFITTERS CLEARANCE SALE: As previewed here, this shop (WSB sponsor) at 3602 SW Alaska is having a change-of-seasons clearance sale. Open 11 am-6 pm today.
ALKI ARTS POP-UP, DAY 2: The pop-up art shop at California/Oregon is in day 2 today (here’s our Day 1 report), open noon-5 pm.
LIVE AT LOCOL: Locöl Barley & Vine (7902 35th SW) spotlights live music 6:30-8:30 pm Wednesdays, no cover, 21+, rotating artists.
DISTRICT 1 COMMUNITY NETWORK: A West Seattle Bridge update – with 11 days to go until reopening – is part of what’s on the District 1 Community Network‘s online meeting tonight, 7 pm. Our calendar listing has information on how to watch/listen/participate.
MUSIC BINGO: Now weekly at The Good Society (California/Lander), 7 pm.
TRIVIA x 4: At 7 pm, you can play trivia at the West Seattle Brewing Mothership (4415 Fauntleroy Way SW); Larry’s Tavern (3405 California SW) hosts Wednesday-night trivia starting at 7:30 pm; trivia starts at 8 pm at Beveridge Place Pub (6413 California SW); at 8:30 pm, trivia is back at Talarico’s (4718 California SW) with Phil T.
SKYLARK OPEN MIC: 7:30 pm signups @ West Seattle’s longest-running open mic – no cover to watch. (3803 Delridge Way SW)
Have a calendar event to add? Please email firstname.lastname@example.org – thank you!
6:07 AM: Good morning. Welcome to Wednesday, September 7th.
*Classes are NOT starting today at Seattle Public Schools – its educators’ union is on strike.
FERRIES, BUSES, WATER TAXI
Ferries: WSF continues the 2-boat schedule for Fauntleroy-Vashon-Southworth. Check here for alerts/updates.
Metro buses are on their regular weekday schedules; watch @kcmetroalerts for trip cancellations/reroute alerts.
The West Seattle Water Taxi is on its regular schedule.
BRIDGES AND DETOUR ROUTES
899th morning without the West Seattle Bridge. 11 days until SDOT expects to reopen it – on September 18th.
Low Bridge: Automated enforcement cameras remain in use until the high bridge reopens; restrictions are in effect 5 am-9 pm daily – except weekends; the bridge is open to all until 8 am Saturday and Sunday mornings.
1st Avenue South Bridge:
South Park Bridge:
The 5-way intersection (Spokane/West Marginal/Delridge/Chelan):
Trouble on the roads/paths/water? Please text or call us (when you can do so safely) – 206-293-6302.