West Seattle, Washington
You’ve seen their glow all around the city – neon signs past and present. Many have backstories. You’ll get to see and hear some of them during the first “Words, Writers, & Southwest Stories” presentation of 2023 – online on January 12th. Here’s the announcement:
Join us for a colorful presentation of “Words, Writers, & Southwest Stories” as Matt Hucke, photographer and bestselling author, shares the brightest sights in the area from his new book, “Seattle Neon: Signs of the Emerald City.”
Sponsored by the Southwest Seattle Historical Society, this first-of-the-year event will be available, the second Thursday of the new year, on January 12th, 2023, at 6:00 PM via Zoom.
Author and photographer Matt Hucke is drawn to disappearing and endangered historic places and artifacts, some of them hiding in plain sight. His first book, Graveyards of Chicago (with Ursula Bielski), explored the history and personalities behind (and beneath) Chicago’s best cemetery monuments. Now in Seattle, he’s brought this same idea to a newer form of historic art: vintage neon signs.
Registration is required. Registered participants will be emailed a link to the presentation on the date of the event.
Please register for this event by CLICKING HERE.
If you’re among the many resolved to boost your fitness level in the new year, here’s an option: Wednesday night, West Seattle Runner (2743 California SW; WSB sponsor) hosts the next Info Night for its Get Fit West Seattle program. This is training that will get you from “couch to half-marathon” within just a few months, starting with a one-mile run next Saturday morning. But first, show up at the shop at 7 pm Wednesday (January 4th) for an explanation of the program and a chance to ask questions. (If you have any in advance, you can email email@example.com.)
(Photo sent last Tuesday by Devlin Carey)
The cleanup continues in South Park, where dozens of homes and businesses were flooded by last week’s weather-enhanced king tide. The Duwamish River Community Coalition is coordinating support for the flood victims and – in addition to the fundraising we’ve mentioned before – has developed a list of what’s needed. You can see the list here; the requested items include specific clothing, houseware, and cleanup items, as well as bottles of water and bags of rice. That document also includes specifics on who to contact and where to go if you can help. They’ve also been accepting volunteer help – watch here for shifts to sign up for.
(WSB video and photos)
A sea of people dove into 2023 with a quick plunge into Puget Sound this morning. The crowd for this year’s Alki Beach Polar Bear Swim stretched all along the beach, from the paved promenade on the west (above) to the easternmost sandy stretch (below, where organizer Mark Ufkes counted down)L
As our videos show, many spent less than a minute in the water. “It wasn’t so bad,” declared one person, before adding: “Well, when you’re in there, it’s bad.” The water temperature today is 48 degrees, five degrees warmer than the 43-degree air at swim time. Sights along the way – Truly the lifeguard was standing by (OK, floating by) in case anyone needed help:
These guys went in twice, with push-ups inbetween:
Not many costumes this year, but we did spot some festive headwear:
Some brought their little ones, who dug in the sand, oblivious to the throng of splashers:
P.S. Unrelated but in a similar spirit, the Special Olympics Polar Plunge is returning to Alki Beach on February 25th – info’s in our calendar listing,
12:09 PM: Just texted by Kersti Muul: “New Year’s whales!” Transient orcas are headed north toward The Arroyos, closer to this side of the channel, and she says, “The water is really beautiful for viewing today, flat and calm, misty with a little bit of sun.” Let us know if you see them!
12:28 PM: Kersti says they’re approaching Brace Point.
(Rainbow photographed this past week by Jerry Simmons)
Welcome to 2023! Here’s some info we hope will be helpful on this holiday:
LOW BRIDGE: Still closed because of mechanical problems – here’s the latest info.
BUSES: Metro‘s on the Sunday schedule. (The free rides were just for New Year’s Eve, so fares ARE being collected today.)
WATER TAXI: Not running today.
FERRIES: Regular 2-boat schedule on Fauntleroy-Vashon-Southworth route – check for alerts here.
MORE TRANSPORTATION NOTES: No charge for street parking in areas of the city with pay stations … West Seattle-relevant traffic cameras are here; see all cameras citywide via this map.
GROCERY HOURS TODAY: Though we don’t make New Year’s Day lists because closures/changes are far less common than the other fall/winter holidays, we do have three grocery notes for today: Trader Joe’s is closed; PCC West Seattle (WSB sponsor) opens three hours later (9 am); Metropolitan Market opens two hours later (8 am).
CHURCH SERVICES TODAY: Here’s our updated-for-today list of local churches continuing to offer online services as well as in-person.
NEW YEAR’S DAY WALKS: Emerald City Wanderers are hosting New Year’s Day walks, starting at St John the Baptist Episcopal Church. The 6- or 10-kilometer walks are noncompetitive, starting between 9 and noon. There is no fee, though contributions to help defray costs are welcome. Hot soups and beverages will be available during and after the walks. St John’s is at 3050 California Ave SW.
ALKI POLAR BEAR SWIM: You’re invited to join in the annual tradition of running into Puget Sound with hundreds of others at 10 am sharp, from the beach across from Duke’s – here’s the original announcement.
WEST SEATTLE FARMERS’ MARKET: After taking Christmas off, the market is back today, usual time and place, 10 am-2 pm on California SW between SW Alaska and SW Oregon.
ALKI CLEANUP: Stay after the Polar Bear Swim – or show up just for this! From Jessica, who has long hosted monthly beach cleanups:
Clean up Alki beach and surrounding streets
When: Jan 1 2023 11 AM to 12:00
Meeting Location: 2452 Alki Ave SW
Pickup sticks and buckets provided. Welcome to bring your own. Bundle up and join us! If you cannot join us, clean up for one hour around your own neighborhood. Take a pic and share it with us! Text Jess at 206-769-6330 to RSVP.
OTHER NOTES: Seattle Parks closure info is here … Libraries (city and county) are closed.
WEST SEATTLE YULETIDE: Last night this year to enjoy the Iversons‘ music-synched light show, 6:30-10 pm, on 38th SW between Genesee and Dakota.
If you see/hear news, please text/call 206-293-6302 – we appreciate your tips 24/7/365!
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