day : 10/07/2024 13 results

SUMMER FEST NOTES: Road/bus reminders; new beverages

Notes tonight as West Seattle Summer Fest gets ever closer:

CLOSURES START THURSDAY: One more reminder, the barricades are standing by and street closures in the heart of The Junction will start kicking in Thursday morning – California between Genesee and Oregon, and between Oregon and Edmunds; SW Alaska between 42nd and 44th. If you’re parked somewhere tonight that will become a no-parking area tomorrow, be sure to move your car before the restrictions kick in, or you really will risk getting towed.

BUS REROUTES START THURSDAY: Check your route’s status via the Metro advisories page – Route 128 will be rerouted starting at 7 am, while other routes’ changes kick in at 3 pm.

FESTIVAL NOTES: The festival officially starts at 1 pm Friday; music starts at 3 pm on the main stage, 4 pm on the West Side Stage in Junction Plaza Park. When you get thirsty, the Beer Garden (near the main stage north of SW Oregon) has a new vendor this year – the NA Sommelier:

The NA Sommelier, founded and operated by Juanita Unger, offers a carefully curated selection of non-alcoholic adult beverages through a pop-up kiosk, a mobile non-alcoholic bar, and a wealth of information and resources on all things booze-free.

Juanita’s mission is to help people discover delicious, complex, and enchanting flavor experiences, ensuring that everyone feels welcome to the party!

Check out other food and drink purveyors here. And come enjoy year-round Junction faves Thursday night during Summer Fest Eve (as well as throughout the festival). See you in The Junction!

WEST SEATTLE LIGHT RAIL: More soil sampling, plus two events Thursday – Rally for Relocation, and ‘accountability’ group’s media briefing

Three notes about West Seattle’s planned light-rail extension:

MORE SOIL SAMPLING: Sound Transit continues work in various neighborhoods, and Debora sent that photo after the latest notice for geotechnical work on the south side of SW Genesee east of 35th SW, potentially lasting through the middle of next week.

RALLY FOR RELOCATION: Reminder that tomorrow is the day businesses in the project path are hoping to rally community support for better relocation compensation, as first announced last month. All this will be happening in the 3800 block of Delridge Way SW – home to Ounces, Mode Music Studios (WSB sponsor), Mode Music and Performing Arts, and The Skylark, 4 pm to 7 pm Thursday. We mentioned it when it was first announced; here’s the reminder from organizers:

West Seattle Businesses and community members will rally together in support of the 60+ West Seattle Businesses that face relocation as a result of light rail extension to West Seattle.

A Rally for Relocation will take place on Thursday, July 11th from 4-7 pm at Ounces Taproom & Beer Garden in West Seattle. From 4:30-6 pm, supporters will walk on Delridge Way SW in front of the North Delridge Businesses Facing Relocation (from Skylark Cafe to Delridge Deli Mart, just off the ramp to the West Seattle Bridge), followed by a rally and community gathering at Ounces.

The rally aims to raise community awareness and advocate for adequate relocation support for affected businesses, ensuring their survival if the West Seattle light rail project is approved this summer.

Businesses and residents will urge the Sound Transit Board: Preserve West Seattle’s character and economy. Ensure local businesses have the resources to relocate and thrive alongside the new light rail.

The rally stems from a petition at displacedbylightrail.com, initiated by local businesses to highlight their precarious situation. With nearly 2,000 signatures and growing, it underscores concerns about insufficient relocation funding from Sound Transit. Many affected businesses fear closure without adequate financial support and assistance.

MEDIA BRIEFING: Organizers of the Rally for Relocation reiterate that they’re not trying to stop light rail. However, a different group that is – at least temporarily – plans a West Seattle media briefing earlier in the day. At 10:30 am at Jefferson Square, the organization Smarter Transit says it will discuss its demands for ST accountability:

-Present key data showing ST3 work will not solve our region’s transportation issues nor alleviate greenhouse gas emissions.
-Ask the Legislature to require Sound Transit to create a post-pandemic plan to increase ridership, decrease single car drivers and lower greenhouse gases.
-Discuss their petition local residents may sign demanding accountability and pausing ST3 planning until the agency shows voters transit alternatives that achieve less congestion, lower emissions and promote greater cost efficiency with taxpayer dollars.
-Promote passing legislation to make the ST Board directly elected by district via publicly funded campaigns to end the cost overruns and lack of oversight.

This group is not exclusively focused on West Seattle; its roots go back to the ’00s.

VIDEO: Bald Eagle gets boost from boarders off Lincoln Park

A happier story from the shore: Jess sent the videos and report:

A friend and I were paddleboarding off Lincoln Park near the Colman Pool point when we saw repeated splashing out in the middle of the cove near the Driftwood Sculptures. After watching a moment we noticed there was a waterlogged bald eagle stuck in the water getting divebombed by seagulls. We put the paddles in high gear and rushed over to see how we could help. When we arrived the seagulls gave the eagle a break, and we were able to direct it toward shore as it had been struggling around in circles far from shore. I was able to gently get my oar underneath it and lift enough for it to climb aboard one our paddleboards as we floated closer to shore.

Since it was obviously very scared still, it hopped off as we got closer to show and swam the rest of the way to shore. We tried to have everyone give it space as it dried off enough to fly into the woods to dry completely before taking back to its perch high over the Colman Pool point.

FOLLOWUP: 3 months later, abandoned, deteriorating stolen SUV still on West Seattle beach

This afternoon, with orcas passing through our area again, a longrunning hunk of giant beach junk stands out more glaringly than ever.

(First and last photos are from last weekend, sent by Janel)

That stolen-and-abandoned Jeep Compass has been on the rocky beach in the Seola/Arroyos area since mid-April (here’s our first report). By the time of our first followup days later, local, state, and federal authorities had been to the site, and the SUV’s owner had belatedly reported it stolen. The state removed fuel from the tank. But no one, we were told, could figure out how to get it off the beach – it was apparently exactly in the wrong position for various removal options by land or sea.

(This photo and next are from Robin)

We checked back again in mid-May. By that time, area resident Robin was tracking the situation, and trying to figure out who could do something about it. She’s still on the case; she says she’s even talked with the property owner, who was away when this happened and, she says, is frustrated too. But nothing has changed, and as her photos show, the car continues to fall apart, as the water rushes in and rushes back out. Pieces of it are strewn about on the beach.

We thought a marine-focused environmental advocacy group might have a lead on accountability. That inquiry dead-ended. We then turned back to the state, whose Department of Natural Resources has a Marine Debris Removal Program. (We mentioned it five years ago, when state commissioner of public lands Hilary Franz came to visit a crew.) So we tracked down DNR spokesperson Michael Kelly, who asked around and then told us this could be a matter of “jurisdictional issues”:

Some of the problems we run into with vessels may be at play here with this vehicle. DNR only has jurisdiction on State Owned Aquatic Lands (SOAL) and not all tidelands are within SOAL. Cities and counties have jurisdiction where we do not but may lack the ordinances allowing them to remove private property from private property. Another is funding, we can only remove vessel when we have the funding to do so.

The private property owner can get a junk vehicle affidavit filled out by their code enforcement office of their local law enforcement department to get the legal right to remove the vehicle, but it would be at their expense.

However, he had one tip for Robin as a concerned citizen – to file a “large debris” report via the agency’s MyCoast app.

She’s already tried the city’s Find It, Fix It system – which went nowhere because it wasn’t on a public beach – so now she’s trying this too. Robin told us in one exchange, “The car is falling apart and I am sure several things have just washed away into the Sound. They will surface further north of here or some poor creature will be killed or maimed by it. Tragedy on so many levels.”

UPDATE: About the emergency response at Lincoln Park

4:51 PM: Several people have asked about a multi-unit SFD response at Lincoln Park this past hour. All we know so far is that it was dispatched as a report that an 11-year-old had “fallen 25 feet” near the north parking lot. The log shows that SFD medics are making a hospital transport. (added) Once medics started evaluating him, they said it was more like a 12-foot fall, from a tree, and that he was alert/conscious.

5:57 PM: SFD confirms to us that the 11-year-old fell an estimated 12 feet and was in stable condition when taken to Harborview.

WHALES: Orcas in the area

Thanks to Mike for the tip! He reports that orcas are in view near Blake Island. According to an Orca Network commenter, they’re headed southbound. Let us know if you see them!

BIZNOTE: New owner for MOD Pizza, six weeks after its first West Seattle restaurant closed

After reports it was contemplating a bankruptcy filing, MOD Pizza has instead just found a new owner. This news comes six weeks after MOD abruptly closed one of its two West Seattle restaurants, the Junction location that was its first on the peninsula. We requested MOD’s announcement after seeing first word of the sale via Restaurant Business this past hour, and here’s what we received from a company spokesperson:

MOD Super Fast Pizza Holdings, LLC (“MOD Pizza”, “MOD” or the “company”) today announced that Elite Restaurant Group has acquired 100% of the equity of the company pursuant to a merger agreement between the company and an affiliate of Elite.

“MOD has an outstanding culture and passionate, loyal guests and employees,” said Michael Nakhleh of Elite Restaurant Group. “We recognize the inherent value this represents and look forward to helping MOD write the next chapter in its history.”

MOD, a pioneer of fast-casual pizza and salads, and its franchisees own and operate restaurants in 28 states and Canada. In recent months, MOD has been implementing a plan that includes rightsizing its portfolio, refreshing its brand, and further elevating guest experiences. It has made steady improvements to the overall business.

“MOD is a beloved brand with a strong following,” said Beth Scott, CEO of MOD Pizza. “We’re excited to work with Elite Restaurant Group to strengthen MOD’s future.” …

MOD’s remaining West Seattle store is at Westwood Village. The chain was founded in Seattle in 2008.

CONGRATULATIONS! West Seattle Grand Parade reveals this year’s Orville Rummel Trophy honorees, Bianca Thomka and Neil Duncan

Just ten days until this year’s West Seattle Grand Parade! We’ve already reported on the news that West Seattle High School‘s state championship baseball team being chosen as Grand Marshals; today, parade coordinator Michelle Edwards announced the parade’s other major honorees:

The 2024 West Seattle Grand Parade honorees for the Orville Rummel Trophy for Outstanding Service to the Community are Neil Duncan and Bianca Thomka! Neil and Bianca are this year’s honorees due to their significant contributions to the West Seattle community.

Neil’s expansive IT skills have been instrumental in ensuring the smooth operation of multiple local organizations, including the West Seattle Chamber, The Center for Active Living (formerly known as the Senior Center of West Seattle) and the West Seattle Junction Association, where he has donated well over 100 hours to set up communications infrastructure. Bianca excels in organizing events with remarkable efficiency and cooking for community events. She has been volunteering for over eight years in the kitchen of The Center for Active Living. Every Wednesday, Bianca helps the Chef get hot lunches ready for 100 community seniors. She also assists the Chef during large Rainbow Bingo fundraising events and monthly birthday luncheons.

Together, their dedication and expertise have significantly enriched West Seattle, making them the ideal candidates for the Orville Rummel Trophy!

You can cheer Neil and Bianca, and the hundreds of other people who will be participating in the parade, celebrating its 90th anniversary on Saturday, July 20th – it starts at 11 am, southbound on California from Lander to Edmunds.

ABOUT THE ORVILLE RUMMEL TROPHY: It’s named after the man who founded the West Seattle parade in 1934, Orville Rummel – lots of background in the story we published the year we were honored with the trophy, 2010. The award was first presented in 1984. Here’s the full list of recipients along the way (no parade 2020-2021 because of the pandemic, so no award recipient):

1984: Charles and Ann Gage
1985: RB Chris Crisler Jr.
1986: Morgan and Carol McBride
1987: Margaret Miaullis
1988: Charles Jung
1989: Aurlo Bonney
1990: Katie Thorburn
1991: Dorothy Poplawski
1992: Dan Wiseman
1993: Virgil Sheppard
1994: Dorene Smith
1995: Doris Richards
1996: John Kelly
1997: Dick Kennedy
1998: Jim Edwards and Barbara Edwards
1999: Lt. David E. Cass
2000: Husky Deli/Miller Family
2001: Stephanie Haskins
2002: Forest Lawn
2003: Sue Lindblom
2004: Edgar and Ann Phipps
2005: Karen Sisson
2006: Walt DeLong
2007: David and Doreen Vague
2008: Tim St. Clair
2009: Morey Skaret
2010: West Seattle Blog
2011: Cindi Barker
2012: Shirley Vradenburgh
2013: Judy Pickens
2014: Earl Cruzen
2015: Donn Weaver
2016: Clay Eals
2017: Keith Hughes
2018: Velko Vitalich
2019: Adah Cruzen
2022: Deb Barker
2023: Erik Bell

VIDEO: Mayor signs transportation levy; Seattle voters will decide what happens next

One day after the City Council finalized it, the transportation-levy renewal/expansion got Mayor Bruce Harrell‘s signature in a City Hall ceremony this morning. With speeches from the mayor, District 1 City Councilmember Rob Saka, business and labor leaders, and others, the levy started its road to the November ballot. It does not have a catchy name (yet), unlike its predecessor Levy to Move Seattle – expiring at the end of this year after its nine-year run – or the one before that, Bridging the Gap, which covered 2006-2015.

You’ve likely already heard that the levy would raise $1.55 billion over eight years. The mayor noted that’s “$21 per month more than the current levy” if you have a median-value house (he didn’t cite a number but it’s supposedly in the $800,000 vicinity). The total is said to represent almost a third of the budget for SDOT, whose director Greg Spotts spoke today too. He declared the levy “balanced and practical … data-driven, community-informed.” Much was made in other speeches of consensus and collaboration; Saka was lauded for leading the full-council committee that reviewed and amended the original slightly-less-costly proposal originally sent by Harrell. Saka declared the levy “a victory for the people of Seattle” and concluded his speech with this quote from President Franklin D. Roosevelt.

The website for the levy promises updated documents are in the works, so we don’t have the exact text yet (but here’s the council’s most recent spending-breakdown document). And much of what it will fund will not initially be spelled out location by location, but as we’ve noted in coverage over the past few months, there are several planned West Seattle projects specifically identified – repaving and other changes for 35th SW between Alaska and Morgan, pavement repairs to Fauntleroy Way SW between 35th and Alaska to get it through the years of nearby light-rail construction, safety improvements at the east end of the Roxbury corridor, a sidewalk along part of SW Brandon in North Delridge. Saka also spoke of one of his late additions, a future West Seattle protected-bike-lane project to be named for Steve Hulsman, the rider killed on Marine View Drive last year, whose widow Rita Hulsman was in attendance at the ceremony. The levy projects listed by name in the “spending breakdown” also mention a protected bike lane for Highland Park Way SW, ostensibly a reference to the proposal to replace a downhill driving lane with either a PBL or a multi-use path.

You can read the city’s overview of the levy here. General-election voting will end November 5.

Here’s what’s happening for the rest of your West Seattle Wednesday

(Sea Pen, photographed last weekend at Lincoln Park by Brandy DeWeese)

As the temperature finally falls a bit, here’s our list of what’s happening today/tonight, mostly from the WSB West Seattle Event Calendar:

FOOD DRIVE: The almost-daily summer food-donation drive continues at Admiral Church (4320 SW Hill) – you can drop off nonperishable items until noon.

FREE SUMMER MEALS FOR KIDS: Multiple locations and varying times in West Seattle – here’s the list.

TRANSPORTATION LEVY SIGNING: 10 am at City Hall, with District 1 City Councilmember Rob Saka – who led the committee that worked on it – joining Mayor Bruce Harrell and others. You can watch via Seattle Channel.

WALKING FOR WELL-BEING: 10 am walk in Lincoln Park (meet at 47th/Fauntleroy) – info’s in our calendar listing.

TODDLER READING TIME: 10:30 am Wednesdays at Paper Boat Booksellers (6040 California SW).

SPRAYPARK: Highland Park Spraypark (1100 SW Cloverdale) is open every day, 11 am-8 pm, free.

COLMAN POOL: The season continues for this outdoor heated-salt-water pool on the shore at Lincoln Park (8011 Fauntleroy Way SW), noon-7 pm – session times are on the Colman Pool webpage.

LINCOLN PARK WADING POOL: Also at Lincoln Park, the 7-day-a-week wading pool is open today noon-7 pm, in the central upper part of the park near the north play area.

DELRIDGE WADING POOL: Also open today, next to Delridge Community Center, noon-5:30 pm. (4501 Delridge Way SW)

MANAGE YOUR BLOOD SUGAR: 4 easy tips in a free half-hour “lunch and learn” online event with Neighborhood Naturopathic and Primary Care (WSB sponsor), 12:30 pm – registration link is in our calendar listing.

TODDLER STORYTIME: For kids 1 to 3 years old, 3 pm at Southwest Library (9010 35th SW), free, no preregistration required.

FIX-IT WORKSHOP: Fix it, don’t toss it! Weekly event, free (donations appreciated), 5:30-7:30 pm at West Seattle Tool Library (4408 Delridge Way SW, northeast side of Youngstown Cultural Arts Center).

‘READY FREDDY’ PREP PARTY: Quick, fun, free way to get on the road to being ready for trouble. 6 pm at West Seattle Coworking (9030 35th SW) with Just in Case – our calendar listing has the registration link.

FREE ART CLASS: Watercolor mixed-media class, at Youngstown Cultural Arts Center (4408 Delridge Way SW), 6-8 pm.

FREE GROUP RUNS: The weekly West Seattle Runner (2743 California SW; WSB sponsor) group run welcomes all levels – meet at the shop by 6:15 pm.

TRIVIA x 4: Four places to play tonight. At 6 pm, Locust Cider (2820 Alki SW) offers triviaLarry’s Tavern (3405 California SW) hosts Wednesday-night trivia starting at 7:30 pm … Quiz Night begins at 8 pm at Beveridge Place Pub (6413 California SW) … and at 8:30 pm, trivia with Phil T at Talarico’s (4718 California SW).

LIVE MUSIC AT THE LOCOL: 6:30 pm. 21+. Rotating performer slate. (7902 35th SW)

MUSIC BINGO: Play weekly at The Good Society (California/Lander), 7 pm.

YOGA IN THE PARK: Two West Seattle teachers lead Wednesday night outdoor-yoga events at Myrtle Reservoir Park (35th/Myrtle), 6:30 pm – follow the link for ticket info.

OUTDOOR YOGA AND MORE: Outdoor Kundalini Yoga, Breath Work, Meditation and Gong Bath, 7 pm at Solstice Park (7400 Fauntleroy Way SW), ticket info in our calendar listing.

SKYLARK OPEN MIC: 7:30 pm signups for West Seattle’s longest-running open mic. (3803 Delridge Way SW)

If you’re planning a show, presentation, meeting, open house, reading, tour, fundraiser, sale, discussion, etc., and it’s open to the community, please send us info so we can get it onto West Seattle’s only comprehensive event calendar! westseattleblog@gmail.com – thank you!

UPDATE: Emergency response for possible boat in trouble off Beach Drive

8:23 AM: Seattle Fire is reporting a caller claims they see a partly sunken boat off Beach Drive in the Jacobsen Road vicinity. They’re sending land crews to the Don Armeni/Seacrest area in case anyone is rescued and brought there. Updates to come.

8:34 AM: So far nothing confirmed. We’ve made contact with the Beach Drive responders who note that a possible location is closer to Vashon, and vessels including Coast Guard and SFD are checking that out.

8:38 PM: They’ve found what looks to be a “derelict vessel,” no sign of anyone o board in trouble, so they’re downsizing the response, canceling everyone but an SFD fireboat. The battalion chief on scene along Beach Drive confirmed that to our crew.

TRAFFIC, TRANSIT, WEATHER, ROAD WORK: Wednesday watch

6:11 AM: Good morning! It’s Wednesday, July 10.

1ST AVENUE SOUTH BRIDGE STATUS:

Northbound 99 at the bridge has reopened after an hours-long closure because of Tuesday’s big fire.

WEATHER + SUNRISE/SUNSET TIMES

The Heat Advisory alert continues until 5 pm. Tuesday brought another record-for-the-date high, 98, but today the cooldown is supposed to begin. The forecast: Still sunny, high in the mid-80s. Today’s sunrise was at 5:23 am, while sunset will be at 9:06 pm.

ROAD WORK

*The Admiral Way Bridge seismic project has begun; here are more specifics. Fairmount Avenue is now closed under the bridge for the duration of the project, likely into early 2025.

*SDOT’s Delridge pedestrian-bridge earthquake-safety project continues, with narrowing at Delridge/Oregon.

*Beach Drive: Gas-pipeline work continues at spots along the southern stretch.

SUMMER FEST AHEAD

For West Seattle Summer Fest, road closures and parking restrictions start as early as Thursday morning, according to the West Seattle Junction Association – California Avenue SW closes between Edmunds and Oregon and for much of the block north, and Alaska closes between 42nd and 44th. Watch this page for bus reroute notices from Metro.

TRANSIT NOTES

Metro today – Regular schedule; check for advisories here.

Water Taxi today – Regular schedule. Check the real-time map if you need to see where the boat is.

Washington State Ferries today – The usual 2 boats on the Triangle Route, and today’s the day the unscheduled third boat will NOT be available for up to two days per WSF.

SPOTLIGHT TRAFFIC CAMERAS

Low bridge: Here’s the main view:

Delridge cameras: Besides the one below (Delridge/Orchard), cameras are also at Delridge/Genesee, Delridge/Juneau, Delridge/Henderson, Delridge/Oregon, and video-only (so you have to go to the map), Delridge/Holden and Delridge/Thistle.

High Bridge – Here’s the main camera:

High Bridge – the view from its southwest end (when SDOT points the 35th/Avalon/Fauntleroy camera that way):

MORE TRAFFIC CAMS: All functioning traffic cams citywide are here; West Seattle and vicinity-relevant cameras are on this WSB page.

BRIDGE INFO: The @SDOTBridges feed on X (ex-Twitter) shows whether the city’s movable bridges are open for vessel traffic.

If you see a problem on the bridges/streets/paths/water, please text or call our hotline (when you can do that safely, and after you’ve reported to authorities if they’re not already on scene) – 206-293-6302. Thank you!

UPDATE: Rescue response for vehicle-on-side crash on 18th SW

12:47 AM: Seattle Fire is sending a “rescue extrication” response to the 7900 block of 18th SW [vicinity map] for what’s described as a three-car crash, with one on its side, having hit “multiple parked cars.” Updates to come.

(Added: Texted photos)

12:55 AM: Firefighters on scene say they’re going to need to get one person out of the on-side car. They’re also blocking 18th in the area, between Kenyon and Elmgrove.

12:59 AM: Vehicle is described as a truck; driver is not believed to be seriously hurt. Responders now say seven vehicles are involved.

1:07 AM: Firefighters have extricated the driver.

1:22 AM: He’ll be taken to a hospital and investigated for possible DUI, according to radio exchanges. Meantime, much thanks to the texter who’s been sending photos from the scene – here are some of the other damaged vehicles: