West Seattle, Washington
Seattle Education Association members moved beyond their outside-school picket lines in Day 3 of their strike. Above, some went to The Junction to demonstrate for a while this afternoon; others organized community-service projects. Here’s what else happened:
WEEKEND TALKS EXPECTED: Though Seattle Public Schools had said on Thursday that they’d make a decision abut Monday by mid-afternoon Friday, they changed the plan. From the daily media statement:
We do not yet have an agreement as of Friday afternoon. On Monday, Sept. 5, we began working with a mediator and are optimistic about the progress being made. We are close on several proposals and expect bargaining to continue throughout the weekend. We will notify families this weekend about the status of school for Monday, Sept. 12.
The district also released a video from Superintendent Dr. Brent Jones – see it here.
ON THE LINES: The union has not sent a media update so far today/tonight. We stopped by two more schools today, West Seattle’s K-8s – Pathfinder on Pigeon Point:
And on Delridge, Louisa Boren STEM:
We asked striking 5th-grade teacher Sunny Graves, who’s been at STEM since its start a decade ago, to summarize the strike issues:
She added later by email, “This strike is also about the lack of resources to meet the level of student trauma we faced last year post pandemic. In my 15 years of teaching and working with children I have never had a harder year. This rings true across the board when talking with fellow educators. Student and educator need for social and emotional support was unprecedented. It’s time for the district to act, because if not now, then when?”
You have four chances to celebrate local authors and booksellers in the next six days! In case you haven’t seen these already in the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar:
PAPER BOAT BOOKSELLERS ANNIVERSARY WEEKEND: Tomorrow and Sunday, the independent bookstore at 6040 California SW celebrates three years in business. On Saturday (open 10 am-6 pm), Paper Boat is having a sidewalk sale; on Sunday (open 11 am-5 pm), they’re celebrating with treats and drinks. Both days, you get 10% off your purchase (excluding gift cards and sale items).
BOOK AWARDS FINALISTS @ C & P: As noted here last month, West Seattle authors Lyanda Lynn Haupt and Donna Sandstrom have books on the finalist list for this year’s Washington State Book Awards. Monday (September 12th) they’ll both be at C & P Coffee Company (5612 California SW; WSB sponsor) to read from their acclaimed books (“Rooted: Life at the Crossroads of Science, Nature, and Spirit” by Haupt and “Orca Rescue! The true story of an orphaned orca named Springer” by Sandstrom), 6-8 pm. They’ll also be signing their books, which you can buy from Paper Boat while at the event.
‘AT HOME ON AN UNRULY PLANET’ AUTHOR @ C & P: The next night – Tuesday (September 13th) – West Seattle journalist and author Madeline Ostrander will be at C & P Coffee for a conversation about her new book “At Home on an Unruly Planet” with KNKX environment reporter Bellamy Pailthorp, 5:30-7 pm. (We featured Ostrander and her book in this recent story.)
‘RUN WITH IT’ AUTHOR @ WEST SEATTLE RUNNER: We’ve reported on Joe Drake, a local marathon runner living with Parkinson’s. He’s also now an author, and at 6 pm Thursday (September 15th) he’ll be at West Seattle Runner (2743 California SW; WSB sponsor) for a reading and signing of his book “Run With It: A True Story of Parkinson’s, Marathons, the Pandemic, and Love.” (He’ll be just back from his Blue Ridge Relay adventure by then.)
Thanks to community naturalist Kersti Muul for the tip on this. She says we’re going into a high-migration time for birds – and you can help them by turning off or dimming your outdoor lighting. The Audubon program Lights Out is explained here – its main advice:
*Turn off exterior decorative lighting
*Extinguish pot and flood-lights
*Reduce atrium lighting wherever possible
*Turn off interior lighting especially on higher stories
*Substitute task and area lighting for workers staying late or pull window coverings
*Down-shield exterior lighting to eliminate horizontal glare and all light directed upward
*Install automatic motion sensors and controls wherever possible
*When converting to new lighting assess quality and quantity of light needed, avoiding over-lighting with newer, brighter technology
BirdCast tracks migration; here’s what happened last night – check the site tonight to see what’s happening. (Kersti also tells us that the week of October 2nd has been declared Bird-Safe Week in Seattle,)
3:54 PM: It’s what you don’t see in our early-afternoon photo from Upper Fauntleroy that tells the story – the Olympic Mountains would usually be the backdrop, but today all but their foothills are obscured by wildfire smoke. The Puget Sound Clean Air Agency says air around much of Puget Sound hasn’t reached “unhealthy” status yet but by tomorrow (Saturday, September 10th) it could be at “unhealthy for sensitive groups” status. Here’s the PSCAA map; here’s the PurpleAir map with more locations’ readings. The National Weather Service has issued an air-quality alert for 6 am Saturday to 6 pm Sunday, in effect for the four metro-area counties. Wondering where the fires are? Here’s a regional map. You’re also warned to take fire precautions here because it’ll be hotter, dry, and breezy – our area is also under a “red-flag warning” alert for that.
4:47 PM: A Stage 2 burn ban is in effect throughout our area. It’s explained here, but in short:
During a Stage 2 burn ban, any outdoor fire such as a backyard fire pit or campfire using chopped firewood or charcoal is prohibited. … Manufactured portable outdoor devices are allowed, including barbeques and patio warmers that are used in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions. Approved fuel devices – including those that rely on charcoal, natural gas or propane gas – are also allowed.
Nine days before the West Seattle Bridge’s scheduled reopening on Sunday, September 18th, the community-created commemorative T-shirts have arrived, with the contest-winning “Reunited” design (by Susie Perry). Online sales have ended. But if you ordered one, you can pick it up at Youngstown Cultural Arts Center (4408 Delridge Way SW) 5-7 pm tonight or between 11 am and 2 pm Saturday or Sunday. We’re also told there’s a limited amount of extra T-shirts available for drop-in sales. Proceeds go back into the community via the West Seattle Chamber of Commerce and West Seattle Junction Association (both nonprofits). The shirts are $19 for youth sizes, $29 for adult short-sleeve, $35 for adult long-sleeve.
Just in – the West Seattle health-care providers from Pliable will be offering the updated COVID boosters at two pop-up clinics next weekend:
You can go to Pliable’s website to find the registration links as well as FAQs/eligibility/other info.
With nine days to go until SDOT plans to reopen the West Seattle Bridge, here’s the latest.
POSTCARD: If you still harbored any doubts about the September 18th reopening promise, consider this postcard that just arrived in our USPS mail, declaring “The Bridge Is Back” on that date, in eight languages. (Added: SDOT tells us it was “sent to about 58,000 addresses in West Seattle and the Duwamish Valley.”)
SURVEY: In case you don’t do QR codes, the survey the postcard points to is here. It’s officially labeled a “Reconnect West Seattle followup survey,” asking how you’ve been getting around these past two and a half years since the high bridge closed.
DISTRICT 1 COMMUNITY NETWORK BRIEFING: The repair work is almost over, but SDOT still has a lot to do in our area before and after the bridge reopens. That’s what the District 1 Community Network heard from bridge-program director Heather Marx on Wednesday night. First she reaffirmed the reopening date and then went through the list of what’s happening now:
And here’s what’s happening next – including, as we reported earlier this week, the “load testing” starting Tuesday:
Marx stressed that bridge monitoring that’s already being done has left them confident of no surprises when the formal load testing is done. Meantime, as previewed in our traffic roundup this morning, a lot of preparatory work on routes leading to the bridge is planned for this weekend.
Once the high bridge reopens, the low bridge work – done by the same contractor, Kraemer North America – will intensify. Marx said some of the recent problems – the low bridge getting stuck open – will be addressed by pump replacements scheduled in October.
And Marx reiterated that the moment the high bridge is open, the low bridge goes back to being open to all 24/7.
In addition to low-bridge work, SDOT has some other remaining West Seattle projects after the high bridge reopens – these have all been reported before, so this was a recap:
About a controversial item on that list, the West Marginal Way protected bike lane, Marx said they still plan to “collect more data” along the route after the high bridge reopens, particularly traffic from/to Terminal 5 and businesses on the east side of the street.
She also noted that new SDOT director Greg Spotts (interim, pending confirmation vote) had toured the West Seattle bridges earlier and shared photos on Twitter. (This one’s from inside the high bridge.)
Inspection platform for future monitoring pic.twitter.com/pSUh97UBGU
— Greg Spotts (@Spottnik) September 7, 2022
In Q&A with D1CN attendees, Marx was asked again about SDOT’s decision not to allow a community-planned event on the bridge (a run/walk/ride was being discussed earlier in the year). She said that “the very, very strong response we got was ‘never mind the party, just open the bridge’.” She said SDOT is mindful of the fact that this isn’t an occasion to celebrate – “the largest asset in SDOT’s entire system failed and (by reopening it) we’re just getting people back to their normal lives.”
(Afternoon note: Adding photos when/if received)
This is the third day of picketing for striking Seattle Education Association members. In West Seattle, teachers and other SEA members have an announcement and invitation:
While bargaining continues between the Seattle School District and Seattle Education Association bargaining teams, Seattle education employees will continue to participate in strike actions on Friday, September 9. In appreciation of, and solidarity with our West Seattle students and families, local educators are planning several public-service events and activities for Friday afternoon. Community members are invited to participate with us!
Here is a partial list of what some West Seattle school staffs are planning for this afternoon. Community members may also want to stop by their local schools in the morning, to visit with us, and get clarification of afternoon plans.
—Pathfinder K-8 School will be cleaning the area around the Duwamish Longhouse, the park across the street, and along Marginal Way. The Pathfinder community has had a long-standing partnership with the Duwamish Tribe, and staff feels that this service project will be a good way to give back.
—West Seattle Elementary School will be having community-building activities Friday afternoon. Staff will be outside at the neighborhood Park by the Bee Garden from 1:00 – 3:00. There will be board games, arts and crafts, sports, running, movement, sidewalk chalk fun, children’s books, and a community clean up! West Seattle Elementary educators request that everyone pass the word about their community building. “Everyone is welcome to come, show support, and build community with us!”
—Genesee Hill Elementary School educators warmly invite community members to join their line any time before 11:00. Help these fine educators build community presence, and then… “Come march with us to the Junction at 12!” They will be at the Key Bank near Alaska junction, collecting donations of non-perishable food and hygiene items for the West Seattle Food Bank and the West Seattle High School Food Pantry, and they will be participating in a community clean-up at the Junction.
—West Seattle High School staff will also be hosting a non-perishable food and hygiene item drive, at their strike tables, for the school’s food pantry. Items in the pantry are freely given to our students and families who are faced with food and income insecurity. West Seattle High School educators will also be cleaning Hiawatha Park, next to the school (see Donation Request list).
—Alki Elementary educators plan to participate in a beach clean-up from noon to 2:00 PM, and invite community members meet us at the Statue of Liberty at noon!
—Madison Middle School educators will be at school in the morning, and then participating in a clean-up on California Avenue in the afternoon.
—Lafayette Elementary educators will be cleaning the public park adjacent to the school that serves as the Lafayette playground when school is in session. You can stop by the line in the morning to ask about particulars.
—Gatewood Elementary School will be participating in a clean-up at Lincoln Park in the afternoon. Want to join? Stop by the line in the AM, and get some specifics.
—Arbor Heights Elementary educators will be participating in a Lincoln Park cleanup.
(added) Roxhill Elementary educators will be cleaning up Lincoln Park 1-3 pm.
(added) Fairmount Park Elementary educators plan to be out on Fauntleroy from 1:00-3:00pm at the Fairmount Park field picking up trash and waving to all our wonderful community supporters. “We will still have some teachers in the front of our school and invite families and friends to stop by and give us their support!”
(added) Highland Park Elementary – From 1:00-3:00, our staff will be cleaning up around the community. Our staff will pick up trash along 8th Ave, 9th Ave, Roxbury, and Henderson. All who are available in the community are welcome to join!
(added) Sanislo Elementary: service projects near school
(added) Denny International MS: Community Clean-up along Delridge (Roxbury to Juneau)
(added) Chief Sealth International HS: Community Clean-up at Westwood Village
(added) Concord International Elementary – some people will picket while others clear blackberries and clean around the school area
(added) Louisa Boren STEM K-8: Community Clean-up Delridge / Longfellow Creek (south of Juneau); weeding and garden maintenance at Delridge P-Patch Community Garden
These are some, but not all, of the community service events being planned in West Seattle! Local educators, still on strike, miss our students and families. We can’t wait to work with you when our strike is settled, and we have a new contract. In the meantime, please stop by our schools, build community, talk with us, walk with us, and participate in our service activities, if you have the time and energy to do so. Your West Seattle educators appreciate any and all efforts! Thank you so very much!
Anything to add? email@example.com – thank you.
The family of Clara Sasaki Hattori is sharing this remembrance:
Clara Sasaki Hattori, a longtime West Seattle resident, passed away on August 28th, 2022 after a brief illness. She was 103.
Her parents, Kokichi and Asa Sasaki, were Japanese immigrants who had a citrus orchard in Rocklin, California, which is where Clara and her 3 siblings (Mildred Iida, Jay and Ernie Sasaki) were born. Clara attended business school in San Francisco and was excited to be employed at the 1939 World’s Fair. Clara’s young adult life was interrupted in 1942 when she and her family were relocated to the Tule Lake Internment Camp along with other Japanese Americans. In 1943, with the sponsorship of an eastern Washington farmer, Clara was allowed to leave the internment camp. Clara married and had two children and she helped farm the potato fields in Moses Lake. From Moses Lake, she ventured to Seattle and lived in West Seattle for the last 58 years.
For those lucky ones who were acquainted with Clara, she shared her bright light and her feisty and warm personality. After retiring as an Executive Assistant in Univar’s corporate office, she was well known at the West Seattle YMCA for greeting members at the front desk and for her daily swims. In fact, she swam well into her nineties.
Clara traveled extensively after retirement and she especially loved to be in the water, whether it was in Hawaii or Lake Chelan. Her zest for life and good humor were infectious. Many will remember her Halloween costumes when she rocked out as Tina Turner or tipped her hat as Charlie Chaplin. And she was famous for her scrumptious Xmas cookies. Clara touched many people and she will be fondly remembered as being a special friend, kind auntie, loving mom to Karen Bocz and Richard Hattori, and the best grandma to Ross Hattori.
Many thanks to Providence Mount Saint Vincent for taking good care of Clara. For those who wish to honor Clara Hattori with a donation, remembrances may be made to the Providence Mt. St. Vincent Foundation in West Seattle or the West Seattle YMCA.
(WSB publishes West Seattle obituaries and memorial announcements by request, free of charge. Please email the text, and a photo if available, to firstname.lastname@example.org)
6:03 AM: Good morning. Welcome to Friday, September 9th.
*Classes are canceled for a third day at Seattle Public Schools as the educators’ strike continues.
*Other local schools are in session.
ROAD WORK, TODAY THROUGH SUNDAY
Here’s what SDOT has announced:
As part of our Reconnect West Seattle program and ongoing street maintenance, we will be completing several projects this weekend. Work is expected to begin as early as 6 AM and conclude by 5 PM. Please expect delays, drive safely in work zones, and follow directions from signs and flaggers.
-On Friday and Saturday, we will be paving Admiral Way SW between SW Hanford and SW Olga St. We anticipate this work taking place the next two weekends.
-On Saturday and Sunday, we’re repaving the street near California Ave SW and Ferry Ave SW.
-On Saturday and Sunday, we’ll be pouring new concrete panels on 16th Ave SW and SW Webster St. Traffic will be maintained in both directions as we complete the work however you may experience delays.
-On Sunday, we’re installing speed humps on 16th Ave SW and on Alki Ave SW at 58th Ave SW and 63rd Ave SW.
In preparation for the West Seattle Bridge reopening, we’ll be completing several projects this weekend. If you are travelling on the detour route this weekend, expect slowdowns in the work areas.
-On Friday night, starting around 8:30 PM through Saturday morning at 6 AM, we’ll be removing barriers from southbound SR 99 that close off the exit to the West Seattle Bridge.
-Also on Friday night from 8 PM through Saturday morning at 6 AM, we’ll be changing the street striping near Delridge Way SW and Chelan Ave SW to what it looked like before the West Seattle Bridge closed.
-On Saturday from 7 AM through 4 PM, we’ll be working at Chelan Ave SW and SW Spokane St (by Fire Station 36) to return the signal to how it operated before the bridge closure. The signal will be turned off for a period of time, and uniformed police officers will be directing traffic while we complete this work.
-On Sunday night from about 8:30 PM through Monday morning at 6 AM, we’ll be working on the southbound onramps to the West Seattle Bridge to update the travel lane striping.
-We’ll be removing the red bus lane paint on 1st Ave S in the vicinity of S. Horton St in and on both sides of the Spokane St Swing Bridge (low bridge) entrances. This work is scheduled to begin Saturday night at 8:30 PM and conclude on Sunday around 6 AM.
On Saturday and Sunday, we’ll be installing new directional signs at the Chelan 5-way intersection. Work is anticipated to begin as early as 7 AM and conclude by 4 PM on both days.
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
901st morning without the West Seattle Bridge. 9 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 – ALERT: “Expect intermittent single lane restrictions on South Park Bridge between S Orr St. and East Marginal Way S from 8:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. (again today) Friday, Sept. 9. Two-way traffic will be maintained at all times. The lane restriction allow crews room to inspect the underside of the bridge using a large under bridge inspection truck.”
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.