West Seattle, Washington
5:03 PM: Washington State Ferries says the Triangle Route will be back down to two boats this evening because of a crew shortage. Here’s the WSF alert:
Due to a shortage of Coast Guard-documented Crew, the #2 Sealth will tie up after completing the 4:40 p.m. Fauntleroy to Vashon, and the 5:05 p.m. Vashon to Southworth.
The following sailings are canceled for the remainder of the day:
5:30 p.m. and 7:10 p.m. Southworth to Vashon
5:50 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Vashon to Fauntleroy
6:20 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. Fauntleroy to Vashon
6:45 p.m. Vashon to Southworth
5:50 PM UPDATE: The Sealth is now sailing, but at reduced capacity. The updated alert:
The #2 Sealth will sail at reduced passenger capacity due to lack of Coast Guard documented crew.
This will affect the following sailings:
5:30 p.m. and 7:10 p.m. Southworth to Vashon
5:50 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Vashon to Fauntleroy
6:20 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. Fauntleroy to Vashon
6:45 p.m. Vashon to Southworth
Two Washington State Ferries notes:
PROPOSED FARE INCREASES: The Washington State Transportation Commission, which has the final say on fares and tolls, has just settled on a fare-increase proposal to circulate for public input. The proposal is the one that won most support during the recent WSF public meetings and survey, known as Alternative 1 – increasing fares by 2.5 percent twice, in October of this year and October of next year. Watch for your chance to comment before the final decision. The higher fares are intended to meet revenue goals set by the Legislature. (ADDED 12:38 PM: WSTC says you can comment via this page or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.)
CANCELLATIONS: Announced by WSF:
Several late-night sailings to and from Southworth will be canceled due to needed terminal maintenance starting tonight through Thursday.
The following sailings are cancelled from Tuesday, June 15 through Thursday, June 17:
11:50 p.m. and 1:05 a.m. – Departing Fauntleroy to Southworth
12:35 a.m. – Departing Southworth to Fauntleroy
12:15 and 1:30 a.m. – Departing Vashon to Southworth
12:35 a.m. – Departing Southworth to Vashon
Girl Scout Troop 45180 dedicated it this morning. It’s as distinctive inside as outside:
The space (9131 California SW) is to be filled with community food donations – which in turn will be retrieved by anyone in need. (Read more about Little Free Pantries here.)
Toplines from the Fauntleroy Community Association‘s board meeting online this past Tuesday:
CAR PROWL PREVENTION: Half the respondents in the recent FCA neighborhood-wide survey said they had been hit by car prowlers. So FCA’s been working on an initiative aimed at reducing this. They discovered it’s a nationwide problem and there’s no magic solution, but in collaboration with precinct Crime Prevention Coordinator Jennifer Danner, they’re printing signs that can be left in the car to warn thieves it’s not worth their trouble – “there’s nothing to steal.” FCA will distribute these to the community. No date yet for when these signs will be available. FCA webmaster Bill Wellington suggested making the sign available for home printing via fauntleroy.net.
POLICE UPDATE: Sgt. David Terry of the Southwest Precinct said thefts remain the highest crime category in Fauntleroy, which otherwise is what he calls “the safest area” in the precinct’s jurisdiction: Ten thefts in all for the month of April. Traffic violations are the biggest problem, one attendee said, pointing to a crash the previous night at 45th/Wildwood as the latest example:
The wait is over. Washington State Ferries says a third boat will return to the Fauntleroy-Vashon-Southworth route tomorrow. This is more than a month later than WSF’s original plan; in May, they announced that a vessel shortage would delay three-boat service at least a month. According to WSF’s announcement, “The Cathlamet will join the Sealth and the Kittitas on the route. Please note the third vessel will operate for 8 hours a day on weekends, not 16. Customers should check the online schedule for updated sailing times.”
Fauntleroy Children’s Center, located in the historic schoolhouse, welcomes you to join in this year’s fundraising auction starting right now, wherever you are! Here’s the announcement:
The Fauntleroy Children’s Center 34th Annual Auction is going on now online! Now until midnight on Sunday, June 13th we are excited to extend to our Greater West Seattle Community the opportunity to bid on the over 160 fun items and experiences all while supporting FCC. Click on our online auction link to sign up, browse the catalog, and bid high (and often!).
Our goal of our fundraiser is to fill FCC’s annual budget gap, which funds continuing education and staff appreciation, as well as tuition assistance for families in need and other critical projects like technology and play-structure upgrades.
For additional information, please visit the Fauntleroy Children’s Center website or email the FCC auction committee at email@example.com.
Fauntleroy Children’s Center is a nationally accredited nonprofit organization dedicated to serving the community and families of the greater West Seattle area since 1977 by offering high quality childcare in an educational environment. Our skilled, professional staff provides a secure, stable and diverse environment where children want to be. Our mission is to work in collaboration with the families we serve and the community to enrich each child’s social, emotional, intellectual and physical growth.
4:05 AM: Midsize fire response this past hour to Fauntleroy/Henderson, near the ferry terminal. We just caught up with the crews still on scene and they told us it was a carport fire, handled fairly quickly, no injuries.
11:08 AM: Though no investigator had been dispatched at the time of the fire, we noticed on the log that one was sent a few hours later. SFD says their investigation determined the fire was “intentionally set,” with damage totaling about $1,000.
Thanks for all the tips. A film (actually TV) crew staging in Fauntleroy today will be working in Lincoln Park tomorrow. Here’s what we’ve found out.
A crew member we found at the park today would only confirm that it’s a show for Adult Swim, a late-night block of programming on the Cartoon Network. According to a post on a social-media group for film-extra gigs, the Adult Swim series “Three Busy Debras’ has been shooting at the Harbor Island soundstage recently unveiled by King County, so that could be it.
The note on the door of that rental truck says “Alive and Kicking Inc.,” which is the Cartoon Network entity that produces live-action programming including “Three Busy Debras.” The signage in the Lincoln Park north parking lot says they’ll be filming 5 am to 9 pm tomorrow, using the lot as well as some of the trails.
3:56 PM: You might have guessed this already, but if not, the helicopter’s here for the traditional holiday-weekend-getaway-day flyover over the Fauntleroy ferry dock. No extreme backup, though, at last report from Washington State Ferries.
4:17 PM: Shortly after we published that, WSF tweeted that the Fauntleroy terminal now has a 90-minute wait. The helicopter, meantime, has moved on.
By Judy Pickens
Special to West Seattle Blog
Despite the pandemic’s many extra demands on teachers, seven West Seattle schools (half the usual number) managed to rear coho this year. In addition, two preschools released fry reared by volunteer Jack Lawless for the Fauntleroy Watershed Council to supplement what schools were able to produce.
Most teachers scheduled their releases in Fauntleroy Park by family groups. All told, 130 students, plus 190 adults and siblings, put 1,044 fish in the water.
An additional 30 park users who happened by the release site on Saturday let the last of the supplemental fish go for their year in freshwater.
About the same time that fry were going into the creek, 49 smolts were heading out for their two years in saltwater. Between mid-March and late May, volunteers Dennis Hinton and Pete Draughon documented 15 smolts leaving from the upper creek and 34 from middle and lower reaches of the mile-long system. This number is about average for the past five years of this 19-year study.
Next up will be spawning season, starting in mid-October.
Though Fauntleroy United Church of Christ has been worshiping online, the raising of that banner tonight brought congregation members to the church’s parking lot. There, on the one-year anniversary of George Floyd‘s murder in Minnesota, Rev. Leah Atkinson Bilinski acknowledged that the church was late in making an anti-racism statement. She began by calling the banner “an embrace of the Black, Brown, Asian, and Indigenous people of our community who do not feel the embrace of love and justice.”
In the short ceremony, the pastor and her congregation declared, “This is the issue that we – as a country, as individuals, as institutions – are being called to resolve at this time in history.”
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor
Vessel shortages, staff shortages, and even a cause for celebration were among the many topics covered in presentations and Q&A during the first of two Washington State Ferries spring community meetings, just wrapped up online.
These are among the regular annual meetings that WSF offers. Hadley Rodero from the WSF communications team facilitated, and a panel of WSF officials participated. The Fauntleroy terminal replacement project, for which planning is now accelerating, was not included in presentations but was the topic of a few participant questions.
New system chief Patty Rubstello opened with a few words of self-introduction (though she’s only recently become assistant WSDOT secretary, she’s been with the department for 30 years). She’s been visiting vessels and terminals, most recently the Triangle Route (Fauntleroy-Vashon-Southworth). WSF HQ has been undergoing some renovations and downsizing, with so much telework going on.
Two notes tonight about Washington State Ferries:
FAUNTLEROY COMMUNITY ASSOCIATION LETTER: With planning gearing up for replacing the Fauntleroy terminal/dock later this decade, the Fauntleroy Community Association has sent WSF a letter spelling out its early concerns:
You can read the letter above, or here. Key points are that the FCA supports raising the dock a few feet above its current level, to cover expected sea-level rise, but not further, and that it opposes a larger footprint for the dock. WSF has not made a specific size/design proposal but has noted that the terminal’s small holding zone – 80 vehicles, while the ferries on the route hold up to 1`24 – is a challenge.
REMINDER – WSF PUBLIC MEETINGS: The Fauntleroy terminal is one of many issues/projects WSF is likely to mention during its spring systemwide community meetings this week. The same presentation is planned for both – 11 am Tuesday (May 25th) or 6 pm Wednesday – plus Q&A time. Whichever you want to attend, you need to register to get the participation info; RSVP links are in the meeting announcement.
If you had passed that family on the trail in Fauntleroy Park on Saturday, you might have assumed they were just out for a family walk. Except for the clipboards carried by daughters Estela and Vivian as they walked with dad Eddie and mom Carina…
… and these flags they placed at 10 spots along the trail.
Estela and Vivian, 4th- and 1st-graders at Arbor Heights Elementary, are in their third month of a volunteer project in conjunction with the Fauntleroy Watershed Council. They’re gone out every month to survey the trail – through the watershed of salmon-bearing Fauntleroy Creek – for what visiting dogs left behind. We went along on Saturday afternoon for this month’s survey. Every place they found something, they marked with a flag.
The 10 flags they placed this time were fewer than their first two times (17 and 14). The flags are intended to both warn – one side says “Watch your step!” – and educate. They’re rain-resistant and made from paper, says creek steward Judy Pickens, and are removed two weeks after placement. Pickens’ community-connection work is what got Estela and Vivian involved – their family went to a fall “drumming to call the salmon home” event at her house and asked what they could do to help. They’re also involved with the Salmon in the Schools program at Arbor Heights Elementary, and might present their findings at school as well as to the Watershed Council, which has been tracking this problem since 2004.
So what do they hope to accomplish? Estela says it’s simple – convincing dog owners to pick up after their pets. “We don’t want it to get into the creek … we hope this helps the salmon. And we hope people understand there are things they can do” such as gentle reminders to other parkgoers. The sisters will be doing their part to help – and making a map and list of their findings – through August.
As home to one of the two Washington State Ferries terminals that are within Seattle city limits, West Seattle has a sizable stake in the system’s plans and operations. This week WSF announced plans for two online community meetings later this month:
Ferry riders, commuters and terminal neighbors are invited to attend one of two upcoming Washington State Ferries virtual public meetings to hear updates and ask questions about the ferry system.
“We learn so much from our community engagement efforts,” said Patty Rubstello, head of Washington State Ferries. “I’m excited that we’re able to offer our spring community meetings virtually this year and hope that even more people are able to join in the conversation.”
The meetings will take place at 11 a.m., Tuesday, May 25, and 6 p.m., Wednesday, May 26.
WSF staff will give a brief presentation on service updates, proposed tariff changes and the agency’s continued response to COVID-19. Participants will be able to ask questions and provide comments during the meeting. Both meetings will cover the same material and are designed to give participants the option to join the meeting that best fits their schedule.
Members of the public can participate in the meeting from a laptop, desktop or mobile device, but advanced registration is required to participate.
Registration for the virtual meetings:
· Register online for the 11 a.m. meeting on Tuesday, May 25, at: bit.ly/WSFSpringMeeting1
· Register online for the 6 p.m. meeting on Wednesday, May 26, at: bit.ly/WSFSpringMeeting2
These public meetings are held in coordination with the Ferry Advisory Committees. WSF will also hold a special meeting for members of all 13 FACs at 4 p.m. on Thursday, May 27, to discuss their role in advising WSF on customer service and schedules. Members of the public are invited to attend and can register by going to: bit.ly/SpringFACMeeting2021.
One big topic for West Seattle – ongoing planning for the Fauntleroy terminal replacement; the next meetings for that project are expected this summer.
9:09 PM: Just in from Washington State Ferries:
The #2 Kittitas is tying up at Vashon due to lack of Coast Guard qualified crew. #1 Issaquah will make an unscheduled stop to pick up Fauntleroy traffic. (updated 9:40 pm) #2 Kittitas will plan to resume service tomorrow for a late 05:20 a.m. Vashon to Fauntleroy sailing tomorrow morning. The #1 vessel schedule will be the only schedule running tomorrow morning on 5/12/21, until the late 05:20 a.m. Vashon to Fauntleroy sailing resumes the two-boat schedule.
The route was supposed to be on a 3-boat schedule as of Sunday but a vessel shortage has pushed that back at least a month.
WEDNESDAY MORNING: The Kittitas is back in service and the route is back to two boats.
As we’ve been reporting, the pandemic didn’t stop the Salmon in the Schools program – determined and creative teachers and volunteers made educational fish-raising happen even with long-closed campuses. Four months after eggs were distributed, it’s time for the fry to be released into upper Fauntleroy Creek. Above, volunteer Dennis Hinton assists a Louisa Boren STEM K-8 student during a release on Friday; below, preschoolers from The Cove School waited their turn at creekside on Wednesday.
Four more schools plan to visit the creek in the next week and a half to release fry, according to volunteer Judy Pickens. Fauntleroy Creek is one of the few creeks in the city to which salmon still return to spawn – though the return numbers widely year to year, and no spawning was observed last fall.
Washington State Ferries had been planning to launch spring/summer three-boat service on the Fauntleroy-Vashon-Southworth run tomorrow … but a major boat out of service elsewhere in the system has led to a cascading effect of changed plans. M/V Wenatchee is out of service for several months because of the April engine fire, WSF says, and so, according to its announcement, “Losing one of our largest ferries combined with continued pandemic-related crewing shortages for quarantines and vaccinations has forced WSF to make difficult decisions affecting service on (several) routes when peak-season schedules begin on Sunday, May 9.” That includes holding off until at least June 7th for three-boat Triangle Route service. WSF also notes that the 90-vehicle M/V Sealth will join the route from May 13th until at least June 27th, since M/V Issaquah will be moving to the Seattle-Bainbridge run.
After an initial rush – 100 visitors in the first half-hour – we got to the Fauntleroy Church Recycle Roundup during a semi-break in the action, Organizers told us people were already waiting before it began at 9 am!
Here’s the list of what they will and won’t accept this time. They do the unloading, but please wear your mask while there; church volunteers are there to direct traffic and answer questions (and accept donations if interested). The Recycle Roundup usually happens twice a year, spring and fall, but not last year because of the pandemic; it continues today until 3 pm.
One more reminder – Sunday is the day for Fauntleroy Church‘s first Recycle Roundup since before the pandemic. It’s a drive-up/ride-up, free-of-charge event in the church parking lot – Sunday (April 25th), 9 am-3 pm. 1 Green Planet will be there to accept recyclables as listed here. The church is at 9140 California SW (map). Though you’re asked to stay in your vehicle, please wear a mask.
P.S. This happens rain or shine, so if Sunday’s soggy, don’t worry, this will still happen.
We’re now less than one week away from Fauntleroy Church‘s first Recycle Roundup since pre-pandemic. Here’s a reminder from Judy Pickens:
It’s time to top off your bag, box, or bin of recyclables because we’re less than one week away from the return of the Recycle Roundup at Fauntleroy Church! The building is still closed but the parking lot will be wide open on Sunday, April 25, 9 am-3 pm, for free, responsible recycling by 1 Green Planet. Plan to wear a mask and stay in your vehicle. Donation optional. The updated list of what they will/won’t accept this time is here (PDF). The church is at 9140 California SW (map).
Pre-pandemic, the church hosted these events twice a year; the last one was in September 2019.
Three reader reports in West Seattle Crime Watch:
STOLEN RED TRUCK: We have two reports about this theft in Upper Fauntleroy, near 40th/Cloverdale. The red 2002 Ford F-250 HD has a red canopy and black roof rack.
Plate B30800H. Call 911 if you see it.
CATALYTIC-CONVERTER THEFTS: In a comment, John reports, “Lost mine yesterday morning at 2:35 at 39th and Graham. A neighbor reported a muffled sawing noise but did not see anybody.” Also yesterday morning in Seaview, a texter reports, “My elderly mother’s Prius had the catalytic converter stolen. Thieves jacked up the car and use a sawz-all. Neighbor saw a group of three men. Too dark for details.” The same block had at least one car prowled, too.
For a second year, the Fauntleroy Community Association won’t be able to have the Food Fest in connection with its annual meeting, but the meeting will happen anyway, online, 7 pm next Tuesday (April 13th). FCA president Mike Dey explains, “We plan to review the FCA accomplishments and what the FCA has been working on during 2020. Additionally there will be a vote for the board members and officers to serve during 2021. Following the annual meeting, we will continue into our monthly business meeting. Everyone is welcome to attend by just staying on the same Zoom link. No additional registration required. The business meeting will run from approximately 7:30 to 9:00 PM.” Registration is required to get the link – go here for that.