West Seattle, Washington
Two weeks after a jury found 44-year-old Jaycee C. Thompson guilty in a one-hour crime rampage that included a North Delridge murder and South Delridge shooting, he’s been sentenced. King County Superior Court Judge Mark Larrañaga ordered Thompson on Thursday to spend just under 60 years im prison; 18 of those years are mandatory “enhancements” for using a gun in every crime for which he was convicted. In June 2022, he shot and killed 56-year-old Anthony “Gonzo” Gonzalez, described as a “friend,” at a Delridge encampment, shortly after shooting and wounding a 35-year-old man – also someone he knew – two miles away in South Delridge. Thompson, a convicted felon, had been released from jail one week before the shootings, over prosecutors’ objections, as explained in our original story on his arrest. His sentence – 718 months in prison – matched what the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office recommended.
In tonight’s Halloween-decoration spotlight, Jason has again adorned his corner (52nd/Dakota) with dozens of jack-o’-lanterns! Some years he’s had a hundred. Go count this year’s lineup while admiring them! Thanks again to everyone who’s shared decoration-location photos/video/tips – we have more to show you before Halloween arrives; you can scroll through our coverage archive to see everything we’ve already shown. And plan the rest of your Hallo-weekend with our West Seattle guide – we’ll be adding more events before the night’s out!
In her weekly newsletter, circulated tonight, our area’s City Councilmember Lisa Herbold comments publicly for the first time on the Lincoln Park pickleball-court project. She notes receiving an “overwhelming” amount of emails from project opponents, and says she sent Parks and Recreation Superintendent AP Diaz a letter today, with questions as well as a request for a public meeting. Here’s the full text of her letter:
Dear Superintendent Diaz,
I am writing today about the installation of the pickleball court at Lincoln Court. I have shared with hundreds of constituents the Seattle Parks and Recreation position that impacts to wildlife will not increase and may be reduced as relates to emissions. I have told my constituents, as you have:
The…”site has been used as a storage facility for the maintenance crews that service all West Seattle’s parks. Meaning that several times a day, vehicles and large trucks are pulling into this site to load and unload equipment and materials. When this site becomes a pickleball court, SPR will consolidate our maintenance facilities into one location in a different part of Lincoln Park. In our view, any disturbance to wildlife the pickleball court will bring will be equivalent, and potentially lessened as we are removing vehicle emissions from this location.”
Similarly, the Associated Recreational Council (ARC) wrote:
“Lincoln Park was considered as a potential location for dedicated courts through work with a consultant and community engagement in SPR’s 2020-2021 Outdoor Pickleball Plan. The plan offsets an additional active use to Lincoln Park by relocating the SPR grounds storage facility to the crew headquarter location. This will remove trucks, along with their emissions and traffic, driving in and out of this actively used part of the park.”
The public response I have received has been overwhelming. I have received about 1,300 emails strenuously objecting to this characterization of this installation as not having wildlife impacts.
I have also received several requests for “an official SPR plan or study.” Seattle Parks and Recreation, similarly to the ARC, has referred to this document, saying: “Through work with a consultant and community engagement, Lincoln Park was considered as a potential location for dedicated courts in SPR’s 2020-2021 Outdoor Pickleball Plan.” Yet, my quick perusal of the documents linked within the above link suggests that Lincoln Park as a location was first discussed at the May 25, 2022 open house. It appears that this was a citywide meeting. Lincoln Park appears to have been identified in a “break out session. I would like to know how many people were in attendance in the Southwest breakout session. Is there a specific “Lincoln Plan” that informed the discussion in the breakout session? Or was Lincoln Park identified in more of a “spit-balling” exercise? No one denies that Lincoln Park was put on a list, but no one seems to understand how it got on the list.
I understand the analysis and position that no SEPA analysis is needed. But meeting with community members who are pleading to be heard is the least we can do. I have joined Bird Connect on birding tours in Lincoln Park. I appreciate how vulnerable wildlife is there. Birds Connect Seattle reports that:
“More than 160 species of birds have been reported at Lincoln Park. That’s approximately 64% of all bird species that occur in Seattle from a park that represents just 0.25% of our land area.”
A constituent also reports that “ sustained, repetitive noise will disrupt this well-established ecosystem function by marginalizing wildlife and pushing them further out to areas that don’t have as much available prey, as well as pushing prey species out.” Why is it that we do not believe that this will occur?
I have also read the concern the plan in in contravention to the Public Involvement Policy for Parks Planning Processes and for Proposals to Acquire Property, Initiate Funded Capital Projects, or Make Changes to a Park or Facility. Can you comment whether you believe that to be the case? Some may remember that this policy was updated in 2022 on the request of former City Councilmember Nick Licata in response to a public outcry related to another Praks project, the Queen Anne Bowl.
Please consider hosting a meeting to hear the concerns. If you do, I will join you. I look forward to your response, as well as answers to these questions:
-How many people were in attendance in the Southwest breakout session?
-Is there a specific “Lincoln Plan” that informed the discussion in the breakout session?
-Why is it that we do not believe that sustained, repetitive work will not impact wildlife (are there studies)?
-Is DPR proceeding in a way that is consistent with the Parks Involvement Policy linked above?
-Will DPD meet with the public to discuss the plan?
Thank you for your kind consideration of my request and questions. Thank you as well for all you do to support our precious parks system and all of us who use them.
District 1 Councilmember, Public Safety and Human Services Committee Chair
We’ll be checking next week to see how Parks responds.
After more than a decade and a half, the West Seattle front-yard animatronic Halloween show Skeleton Theatre is about to hang up its (bone) spurs. We stopped by the corner of 36th/Hanford after the Skeleton crew started building this year’s stage/set, and they told us this would be their last year. The website‘s not updated yet for this year, but it has tons of history on this longtime local Halloween favorite, which dates back to the mid-’00s (they even did an online version for pandemic year 2020). It’s usually full of corny jokes, lighting and sound effects, and of course, the animatronic skeleton stars. All they would tell us about this year’s show is that it’s called “Junior,” and that the name would make sense when we see the show. The schedule is the same as previous years – Halloween night and the night after (October 31-November 1), 6 pm-9 pm, more or less continuous shows with a reset break between them.
3:23 PM: It’s the traditional kickoff to Hallo-weekend – West Seattle’s first round of business-district trick-or-treating, happening right now in the Admiral District. The onslaught of trick-or-treaters hasn’t quite arrived yet, but the businesses at and around Admiral/California are ready and waiting – above, the Bebop Waffle Shop crew; below, the folks at Baked Custom Cakes:
And don’t miss the spooky ceiling-dwelling spider at Alki Bike and Board (WSB sponsor):
Here’s what the Circa crew cooked up:
This year the trick-or-treating is just the first event in an expanded slate – some grownups-only events are happening too. See it all on the WSB West Seattle Halloween Guide page, including the full list of where and when you’ll find special trick-or-treat events in the next few days. This one in Admiral is on until 6 pm – more photos later!
5:44 PM: As promised – more scenes from around the Admiral District!
Lots more trick-or-treating this weekend – again, see the list in our Halloween Guide!
That’s the long-vacant-and-vandalized house at the far north end of Delridge Way, officially known as 3804 23rd Avenue SW, in our photo from late Thursday afternoon. Earlier this month, thanks to a reader tip, we reported on an “emergency order” by the city, as part of a longrunning investigation of violations, telling the owner to “close” the house immediately, among other things. It’s since been boarded up and cleaned up, but not because the owner took action.
A reader sent us that photo on Tuesday. An accompanying photo showed a junk-hauling truck with a company name we recognized as a city contractor we’ve seen before at encampment cleanups. We subsequently asked the Department of Construction and Inspections about the property’s status; here’s the reply from spokesperson Bryan Stevens:
An Emergency Order (EO) was issued on October 10 under case 1056926-VI for a vacant building open to entry, outdoor debris, and vegetation. The EO required compliance from the property owner by October 16. The required maintenance was not completed by the property owner, so SDCI commissioned a contractor to secure the lower openings and complete the cleanup to close out the EO condition. The cost will be billed to the property owner along with related inspection fees. The building will continue to be monitored via monthly inspections through our Vacant Building Monitoring Program. However, the public should continue to file a complaint if they notice the building open to entry or additional debris. Complaints can be filed online or via phone at 206-615-0808.
We asked about the amount that’ll be “billed to the property owner”; Stevens said he wouldn’t be able to get that for us until next week. The site has had various development plans under various owners over the year; most recently, there was a proposal to renovate the house, but that plan doesn’t appear to have advanced beyond an early stage.
The signage is now covered at what was The UPS Store in Jefferson Square. In case you missed it, The UPS Store, Inc. told us Wednesday that the store no longer was affiliated with the corporation, and that’s why the corporate website labeled it “permanently closed.” The business remains open, however, just not as a UPS Store. We went back this morning and talked to a manager who said that they’re not sure what’s going to happen with the business next, but here’s what’s happening now: They plan to be open 9 am-4 pm daily. If you get mail there, that’s still accessible. Same with package deliveries. But in terms of outgoing packages, all they can accept are pre-labeled returns. Meantime, we’re trying to reach the owners to see if we can find out more about the business’s future.
SIDE NOTE: After hearing from a concerned customer of the now-ex-UPS Store, Bree at Alki Mail & Dispatch sent us a note with an offer for anyone else with concerns: “If they are able to have their packages redirected to us here at Alki Mail (4701 SW Admiral Way), we would be happy to hold them and keep them safe. We usually charge a $4 holding fee for non-mailbox customers, however, in light of the situation, for anyone coming from the UPS store, we will be happy to provide this service to them for free for the time being. We also have mailboxes available for rent for those in need and we can also accept pre-labeled packages across all the carriers but unfortunately, we cannot accept any QR code returns. I’m here for my community and want to do whatever I can to help!” (Any other local providers of similar services with similar offers are welcome to contact us too. Readers had several suggestions in the comments on our previous story.)
Thanks to Jen for the photo and report: “Chief Sealth sophomore Federica Dilley qualified for state with a podium finish in 14th place at the Girls 3A all-SeaKing District 2 cross country championships. She had a PR time of 19:11.” That’s for a 5K race. Here are the full results. The state championships are scheduled for November 4 in Pasco.
Two-part list for today/tonight. First, from the WSB West Seattle Halloween Guide, starting with today’s biggest event:
ADMIRAL TRICK-OR-TREATING: The biggest event for today/tonght is Admiral District business trick-or-treating, 3-6 pm. Look for businesses at and around California/Admiral with signs indicating they’re participating. Streets do NOT close for this, so if you’re driving through the area, please be extra-careful.
Also from the Halloween Guide listings for today/tonight:
PUMPKIN BEER: Pumpkin Junction, second-to-last day – pumpkin beers on tap at The Beer Junction (4511 California SW), open noon-midnight today.
GLASS PUMPKINS Art-glass pumpkin patch @ Avalon Glassworks (2914 SW Avalon Way), noon-4 pm.
SPOOKY SHOW: Nightfall Orphanage, spooky experience at 4544 51st Place SW, 7-10 pm each night. No admission charge, but charity donations requested – food or funds.
STEPHANIE’S LIFELINE BINGO BENEFIT: 6-11 pm bingo party and costume contest in White Center, fundraising for this West Seattle-based nonprofit. Details in our calendar listing.
MEEDS MANOR HAUNTED HOUSE: The legendary Meeds Manor Haunted House is opening for a 7-9 pm benefit night tonight (and then not until Halloween). Details in our calendar listing. (3011 45th SW)
‘ROCKY HORROR’: Rocky Horror Picture Show! 8 pm at Admiral Pub (2305 California SW).
Now, from the year-round WSB West Seattle Event Calendar, here’s what else is happening today/tonight:
STAY ‘N’ PLAY: Free drop-in indoor gym for kids 5 and under and their caregivers, 10-11:30 am at Arbor Heights Community Church (4113 SW 102nd).
SOUTHWEST ARTIST SHOWCASE CONTINUES: 10 am-6 pm, Southwest Library (9010 35th SW) is open – you have one more week to see the work displayed by community members in its annual Southwest Artist Showcase.
PEGASUS POP-UP: Pegasus Book Exchange is celebrating its “40th-ish” anniversary with a pop-up at California/Oregon – storytime at 11 am, book and merch sales 11 am-6 pm.
SCRABBLE CLUB: You’re invited to play 12:30-1:30 pm at Margie’s Café inside the Senior Center of West Seattle (4217 SW Oregon).
NORTHWEST WINE ACADEMY: Tasting room/wine bar open 1-6 pm on the north side of South Seattle College (6000 16th SW; WSB sponsor), student-produced wine by the glass or bottle.
VISCON CELLARS: Tasting room/wine bar open – wine by the glass or bottle – 5-9 pm at Viscon Cellars (5910 California SW; WSB sponsor).
SILENT DISCO: Dance like nobody can hear you! 6:30-8:30 pm at Alki Statue of Liberty Plaza (61st/Alki).
COFFEEHOUSE MUSIC: 7-9 pm, folk-rock music with Dublin Abbey at C & P Coffee (5612 California SW; WSB sponsor). No cover, all ages.
DANCE NIGHT AT THE SPOT: Fridays are DJ Dance Night at The Spot West Seattle (2920 SW Avalon Way), 7-10 pm.
DJ NIGHT AT REVELRY ROOM: Music 9 pm-1 am on Fridays! (4547 California SW)
Something to add to our calendar? firstname.lastname@example.org – thank you!
Family and friends will gather November 18 to celebrate the lives of Larry and Sherron Richter. Here’s the remembrance being shared with their community:
Larry James Richter
(December 20, 1944 – April 20, 2022)
Larry Richter of West Seattle died peacefully on April 20, 2022 at the age of 77 from Alzheimer’s and prostate cancer. A West Seattle native, he graduated in ‘63 from WSHS and was a member of the ‘61 Metro All-City Championship Golf Team, along with his brother Ed. For his first job, Larry walked down the hill to the golf course to collect balls from the driving range for just pennies a ball. In addition to being an avid golfer since childhood, one of his greatest joys on the golf course was meeting his wife of 57 years, Sherron. Larry enjoyed the outdoors such as boating, camping, fishing, and walking around the neighborhood with his cat Midnight.
Larry’s many accomplishments include playing golf for and graduating from UW, being a C.P.A. and small business owner, YMCA board member, Vietnam vet, but he was most proud of his children, Jen (Jenny) Parker and Katie Demorest, as well as his grandchildren Renee, Rachel, and Kenny. He was a loyal friend and devoted family man who was loved by many.
Sherron Lynn Richter
(May 13, 1945 – June 29, 2023)
Sherron, also a life-long resident of WS, passed away June 29, 2023 after fighting a long battle with Multiple Sclerosis at the age of 78. While she loved spending time with her kids and grandkids, she was ready to join her husband Larry in heaven.
A Chief Sealth HS grad, she had a passion and talent for sewing and arts-n-crafts. She made the cutest fabric dolls and pencil toppers that she sold at local events. Sherron would play an occasional round of golf with friends and family before her MS made that impossible.
Sherron devoted her life to her husband Larry and kids Jenny and Katie, always making them her #1 priority. She was always there to chauffeur her kids, step up as a Girl Scout leader, PTA president, Bluebird leader as well as timing hundreds of hours at swim meets. Sherron helped Larry with his tax business often into the wee hours year after year. Those of us who were lucky enough to know her were loved.
A combined celebration of life for Larry and Sherron will be held November 18 at the West Seattle Golf Course at 2 pm. Light appetizers will be served, so please RSVP to Richtercelebration@gmail.com by November 8th. In lieu of flowers, the family has recommended a donation in their honor to the Alzheimer’s Association, American Cancer Society or Multiple Sclerosis Foundation.
(WSB publishes West Seattle obituaries and memorial announcements by request, free of charge. Please email the text, and a photo if available, to email@example.com)
6:02 AM: Good morning! It’s Friday, October 27th.
WEATHER AND SUNRISE/SUNSET TIMES
Sunny, high in the upper 40s, frost advisory this morning. Sunrise today is at 7:45 am; sunset, 5:59 pm.
For the next three days, and again on Tuesday, lots of trick-or-treating and other special events, so be extra-careful! Our <strong>West Seattle Halloween Guide has the full list, but especially note that Admiral District trick-or-treating 3-6 pm today is usually very busy, and on Sunday, “Halloween in The Junction” closes an extra block of California – south of Alaska – for a costume parade, trick-or-treating, and activities 11 am-2 pm.
Water Taxi – Regular schedule today – now on fall/winter schedule, still 7 days a week, but no late-night service Fridays/Saturdays.
Metro – Regular schedule today; check advisories here.
SPOTLIGHT TRAFFIC CAMERAS
High Bridge – the main camera:
High Bridge – the view from its southwest end (when SDOT points the 35th/Avalon/Fauntleroy camera that way):
1st Ave. S. Bridge – southeastern route across the river:
Highway 99: – northbound side at Lander:
BRIDGE INFO: The @SDOTBridges feed on Twitter/X shows whether the city’s movable bridges are opening for vessel traffic.
If you see trouble on the bridges/streets/paths/bay, please text or call us (when you can do that safely, and after you’ve reported to authorities if applicable). Thank you!