day : 21/01/2024 9 results

VIDEO: Permits close; people wanted! Highland Park Improvement Club ‘town hall’ update on rebuilding progress, and what you can do

January 21, 2024 10:43 pm
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 |   Highland Park | How to help | West Seattle news

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

The Highland Park Improvement Club rebuilding project needs more donated dollars. But as much as – or maybe even more than – that, iHPIC needs your talent and time.

That was the message at this week’s online “town hall” updating where the project stands, two and a half years after fire ravaged HPIC’s historic community-owned-and-operated building at 12th/Holden.

The meeting, facilitated by HPIC’s board president Rhonda Smith and member Kay Kirkpatrick, lasted less than an hour, and you can see it in its entirety in the HPIC-provided video above. It was the first “town hall” update on the project in more than a year (here’s our coverage of the previous one, in November 2022), and the sixth since the fire.

The project has been far from idle in the ensuing 14 months – it’s been slogging through the city review process, as explained by architect (and Highland Park resident) Matt Estes of Wittman Estes. Key permits are likely just weeks away. But that’s just one hurdle to clear – to make the project reality, it’ll take more community involvement and more fundraising. The latter has made a lot of progress: Read More

WEEK AHEAD: City Council vacancy finalists’ final pitches Monday

If you want to tell the City Council who you think they should appoint to the 10-month vacancy for citywide Position 8, time is running out. Tomorrow (Monday, January 22) the eight finalists make their final pitches to the councilmembers, who are expected to make their decision Tuesday. You can comment either during tomorrow’s meeting at 9:30 am – in person at City Hall or remotely (the agenda explains how) – or by email ( or individually). The finalists answered questions in a public forum last Thursday night, and tomorrow morning they’ll answer councilmembers’ questions. As with all City Council meetings, this one will be streamed live at


Two reader reports of West Seattle thefts:

HARDTOP STOLEN: This report and photo are from a reader:

My Mazda Miata hardtop, which had specially installed bolted locks to prevent theft, was drilled off before my discovery the morning of Jan 12 in a lighted alley apartment lot (next to other cars) in the Alki area. This current removal was a concerted effort requiring multiple people and tools and also involved the removal of all items in the glove compartment, car inside, and trunk. Approximately $6,000 of damage was done to the car. This hardtop is not replaceable and was useful for the driver’s visibility (soft convertible tops have small back windows). SPD report number is 2024-901158.

PACKAGE STOLEN: This happened just after 1 pm today, reports Jenn:

We had a package stolen from our front door. We have video from our Ring camera – they were wearing a blue jacket (looks like they’re attempting to look like an Amazon delivery person), red backpack, gray beanie with Pom Pom, and were masked. We’re off 34th and Morgan and have a gate that they opened.

No report number yet; we’ll add when it’s available.

WEST SEATTLE BIRDS: 12 views of our winged neighbors, plus an ID request

Thanks to everyone who’s sent bird photos this month! We have enough for one of our periodic weekend galleries – starting with seabirds: Above, Steve Bender‘s photo of American Wigeons at Jack Block Park; below, Mark MacDonald photographed Harlequin Ducks at Lincoln Park:

Also at Lincoln Park, a Common Goldeneye, by Erin B. Jackson:

At Duwamish Head, Robin Sinner photographed this Black Turnstone:

Moving inland a bit, a Yellow-rumped Warbler from Jerry Simmons:

Two more from Mark MacDonald, both at Lincoln Park – a Varied Thrush:

And a Cooper’s Hawk:

They were popular to photograph in recent weeks – we’ve received other Cooper’s Hawk photos, including this one from Andrew Kronen in Belvidere:

And a closeup from Steve Bender:

Here are two owl photos – first a Great Horned Owl seen at Lincoln Park by Rob Christian:

And William Wright sent this photo last Tuesday, explaining: “The students at Fairmount Park Elementary have had a great view of a Barred Owl perched just outside one of the third-floor classroom windows; just about the whole school has made a visit to room 303 for a look at the owl who has been perched there all day.”

Now the request for ID help – Juli wondered if you can identify this bird seen at her feeder:

Thanks again for all the bird images – we also publish some with our every-morning event-preview lists (and also appreciate the other West Seattle scenes sent in for those) – is the best way to reach us, unless it’s urgent, in which case please text or call 206-293-6302!

SCHOOLS: Vashon Island district invites non-islanders to apply

Midway through the 2023-2024 school year, families are finalizing their plans for 2024-2025. So we’ve been showcasing open houses and tours for various West Seattle schools of all types. A nearby district is raising its hand for your consideration, too. Vashon Island School District superintendent Dr. Slade McSheehy asked us to share this announcement with you:

Vashon Island School District Still Accepting Non-Resident Applications

(Photo courtesy Vashon Island SD)

Did you know that the Vashon Island School District is currently accepting non-resident applications for students in grades K-12? This is a wonderful opportunity for families in our neighboring communities to become part of an exceptional school district.

At Vashon Island School District, we take pride in small school environments where every student is not just a name on a roster, but welcomed, known, and treasured.

Join over 200+ students, K-12, who commute daily to be a part of our close-knit island community.

Apply for admission using the VISD Non-Resident Student application, Non-Resident Application

Questions, forms, and other information can be received for each school from the following people:

Chautauqua Elementary: Caleb Johns, CES Registrar- 206-463-8540
McMurray Middle School: Kelly Murphy, McM Registrar – 206-463-9168
Vashon High School: Deb Franson, VHS Registrar – 206-463-8684
Choice Transfers, District Contact: Kareem Greenidge – 206-463-8530

We asked the superintendent for a few more specifics about their current “commuter” student population: “We have 257 off-island students who commute. Approximately 25-30 are from Southworth and the remainder from Fauntleroy. Approximately 25 are K-5 with the remainder grades 6-12.” The total district enrollment is just over 1,500, so that means one in six students is from off-island.

BIZNOTE: Duke’s on Alki temporarily closed for post-freeze repairs

January 21, 2024 11:20 am
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle restaurants

Thanks to Sally for the tip. Duke’s Seafood on Alki says it’s going to have to stay closed “for the next couple of weeks” cleaning up and repairing damage done when pipes broke in the recent sub-freezing weather. The restaurant’s announcement says the pipe breaks led to flooding. Duke’s six other locations remain open – Southcenter, South Lake Union, Green Lake, Kent Station, Bellevue, and Tacoma.

Memorial service January 27 for Joan Muir Batson (Seamens) King, 1934-2024

January 21, 2024 10:03 am
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 |   Obituaries | West Seattle news

Family and friends will gather next Saturday to remember Joan King, and are sharing this remembrance with the community now:

Joan Muir Batson was born on June 25, 1934 to Phil and Melba (Muir) Batson in Seattle, and passed away peacefully in the company of family and friends on January 5, 2024.

She was proud of her old West Seattle family, who first came to the Alki Beach area in 1919. She grew up in the Admiral district, but spent much of her time with her Grandmother, Martha Muir, who owned restaurants at Alki and later the Junction, one of which was located at the current site of the Great American Diner.

Joan attended Lafayette Elementary, Madison Junior High, and West Seattle High School, from which she graduated in 1952. Her father, a Civil Defense official at the time, was posted to Washington, DC, so Joan spent her sophomore year attending high school in Alexandria, VA.

After briefly attending the UW, Joan left school to marry Ralph Seamens, and embarked on her true vocation: wife, mother, as well as a vocal and active member of her community. For many years, she was active in the West Seattle Hi-Yu, the West Seattle Art Club, the YWCA, Girl Scouts, and other organizations. Joan belonged to the West Seattle (now Admiral) UCC in West Seattle, and later Bellevue First Congregational Church, where she added her beautiful voice to their choir. Joan proactively raised her three daughters to be strong, independent woman (and college graduates!), and good mothers as well. No one could surpass her in entertaining, whether it was a picnic on the beach or a pull-out-all the-stops family holiday dinner, and doing it with, as many people have observed, so much elegance.

In 1977, Joan married Robert King, sharing a blended family, beautiful homes, and many trips and adventures on their boat, The Sceptre. After Bob’s untimely death in 1994, Joan left their house in Bellevue and purchased her own home at Providence Point in Issaquah where she resided until health issues prevailed.

While serving on the planning committee for their 50th high school reunion in 2002, Joan became re-acquainted with Tom Knapp, a fellow classmate from 1952, and they were together, sharing more trips and adventures, until her passing.

Joan is survived by her children and their families: Karen Dobbs, Jill (Jim) Gilliom, Renee (Brian) Thorngate, Chris (Karen) King, and Diane King (Jim Bowden); grandchildren Laura (Nick) Mitchell, Mark (Kelly) Wissing, Rachel Gilliom, Jacob Thorngate, Camden Thorngate, Julie Swanson, and Brian Loberg; great-grandsons Henry, Colin and Sam Mitchell. These children were all the Lights of her Life. Her dear partner Tom Knapp also survives her.

Services will be held at Bellevue First Congregational Church on Saturday, January 27th at 2:00 PM. Donations in Joan’s memory may be made to Bellevue First Congregational Church, the West Seattle High School Alumni Scholarship program, or to any local charity benefitting children, families or the elderly. Arrangements by Sunset Hill Memorial Park.

(WSB publishes West Seattle obituaries and memorial announcements by request, free of charge. Please email the text, and a photo if available, to

8 possibilities for your West Seattle Sunday

January 21, 2024 6:16 am
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 |   West Seattle news | WS miscellaneous

(Gatewood photo by Troy Sterk)

Here’s what’s happening today/tonight, mostly from our Event Calendar:

WESTIES RUN CLUB: Meet at 9 am at rotating locations – today it’s Highland Park Corner Store (7789 Highland Park Way SW).

INDUSTRIOUS GRAND OPENING: The new fitness center in the ex-Village Woodworks space at 4538 California SW just opened and is having a grand-opening party 9 am-1 pm today.

WEST SEATTLE FARMERS’ MARKET: 10 am-2 pm, the market is open as usual between SW Alaska and SW Oregon on California, offering early-winter vegetables and fruit as well as cheese, fish, meat, baked goods, condiments, fresh-cooked food, beverages (from cider to kombucha to beer/wine), nuts, candy, more! Here’s today’s vendor list.

FREE SEED-STARTING CLASS: Get going on garden readiness – learn about seed-starting with Jenn at West Seattle Nursery (California/Brandon), 2 pm.

LIVE MUSIC AT C & P COFFEE: Singer-songwriter Dan Lundin performs at C & P Coffee Company (5612 California SW; WSB sponsor), 3-5 pm. All ages, no cover.

FLUTES IN THE FOREST GO INDOORS: You loved them in the park, now enjoy their music at the library! Free chamber-music concert, 3 pm, West Seattle (Admiral) Library (2326 42nd SW).

FREE RESTORATIVE-YOGA CLASS: 4 pm at Dragonfly Studio (3270 California SW), “a chill and slow flow restorative class to connect to ourselves, each other and our community.” Donation-based. Our calendar listing has the registration link.

LIVE MUSIC AT THE ALLEY: See and hear the Triangular Jazztet at The Alley (4509 California SW), 8-10 pm.

Something in the future for our calendar – one-time or recurring? Please email us the info – – thank you!

SPORTS: Chief Sealth IHS varsity basketball teams host Cleveland

January 21, 2024 12:59 am
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle schools | WS & Sports

With two weeks to go in high-school basketball’s regular season, we checked in on Chief Sealth International High School‘s two Saturday night varsity home games.

(#24, junior Fahima Mohamed)

The Sealth girls opened the night with a big win.

(#14, sophomore Alysse Bland)

They beat Cleveland 74-29.

(#11, sophomore Dajah Johnson)

The girls’ record is now up to 8-7. Their win came with an assistant coach filling in at the helm – former West Seattle High School basketball star Grace Sarver:

In the nightcap, the Seahawk boys lost narrowly to Cleveland, 65-63.

It was Senior Night, so that meant some special recognition for the players who will graduate this year:

(#14, senior Ocean Freeman)

(#22, senior Natniel Goitaom)

(#0, senior James McAllister II)

The boys’ record is now 3-13. Their next game is at Franklin, as is the girls’ next game; the boys play at 7:30 pm Tuesday (January 23), the girls play at 7:30 Wednesday (January 24).