Sunrise Heights – West Seattle Blog… West Seattle news, 24/7 Wed, 15 Aug 2018 02:42:52 +0000 en-US hourly 1 DONE! One last work party completes playground for Roxhill Elementary at EC Hughes Tue, 14 Aug 2018 07:43:49 +0000

From Friends of Roxhill:

About 25 volunteers finished leveling the wood chips Monday night at the new playground for Roxhill Elementary at E.C. Hughes. The new playground must be inspected by Seattle Public Schools before it will be open. The district hopes to conduct orientation and safety training during our back-to-school barbecue on Aug. 30. More information on when it will be open to the public will be available soon.

Thank you to everyone who came out in support of Friends of Roxhill Elementary’s efforts to bring a new playground to our school. Without community pledges and hard work, none of this would have been possible. Also, take a look at the corner of 32nd and Kenyon, where the mural (also designed through a community process) is taking shape.

If you have questions or want to get involved, contact

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UPDATE: Police search after crash in Sunrise Heights Thu, 09 Aug 2018 01:03:50 +0000 6:03 PM: Thanks for the tips. A police search in Sunrise Heights followed a 2-car crash at 31st and Elmgrove. Readers report one person was taken to the hospital and the other driver bolted, which led to the search.

6:23 PM: We’re in the area. Elmgrove is blocked off, with police cars and crime-scene tape. Traffic Collision Investigation Squad detectives are here; police confirm one driver was transported to the hospital and the other is being sought.

Police say the car below is the one whose driver was taken to the hospital; they’re looking for the driver of the one above.

They expect Elmgrove will be closed another hour or so.

7:10 PM: Updated which car was which, after neighbors corrected us.

8:17 PM: We asked SFD about the driver taken to the hospital. Tge man’s believed to be in his early 30s and his injuries were not life-threatening.

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FOLLOWUP: Mural work begins at Roxhill Elementary’s new EC Hughes home Sun, 05 Aug 2018 19:33:15 +0000 The photo and report are from Friends of Roxhill:

Artist Henry Luke has started working on the community inspired mural for Roxhill Elementary at E.C. Hughes at the corner of 32nd and Holden. The mural has been designed through a community process, with 75 comments through West Seattle Blog outreach alone. Friends of Roxhill Elementary, the 501c3 booster club for Roxhill Elementary, received a $100,000 grant from the Department of Neighborhoods, which funded both the recent playground for Roxhill at the renovated, updated E.C. Hughes (built by community volunteers) and the mural. Stop by and say hello if you see Henry at work! Questions? Contact

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Almost everything old is new again: See inside renovated EC Hughes, future home of Roxhill Elementary Sat, 30 Jun 2018 00:13:08 +0000

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

Almost 30 years after Seattle Public Schools stopped using EC Hughes as a full-time elementary school, it will return to that status this fall. A September 4th ribbon-cutting ceremony will officially open the Sunrise Heights campus (7740 34th SW) as Roxhill Elementary at EC Hughes.

But first, the $14 million renovation project is wrapping up.

Back in October 2016, when plans were being finalized both for the Roxhill move and the Hughes renovation, we toured the historic school – a city landmark – with Seattle Public Schools’ Mike Skutack and DLR Group architect Ariel Mieling. We previewed the renovation plan in our report on that tour.

This week, we toured EC Hughes with them again, to see how the work has turned out. It’s not entirely done, but close. Throughout the building, as promised, there is homage to the past as well as new features for the future:

That’s one of the many old doors that have been repurposed into tackboards.

But let’s get back to the entrance:

It’s the most dramatically changed part of the building, with spaces for everything from the offices, to visiting families, to the health clinic, to specialists who’ll be working with some of the students. Mieling had shown us the plan during our October 2016 tour:


And now it’s come to life – pending the arrival of students and staff, of course. Windows and light played a major role in the renovation – preserving the historic windows in the original 1926 Hughes building, replacing the windows on the 1946 addition on its south side (top photo), highlighting skylights on the top floor:

High ceilings were preserved everywhere possible, including classrooms where they’re now anchored by fans:

Classrooms also have “smart projectors,” a step up from the “smart boards” that represented the newest teaching technology in earlier local overhauls and rebuilds:

Also upgraded and replaced – the kitchen equipment:

It’s mostly a “warming” kitchen, as the actual cooking is done at centralized district facilities. But it remains right off the lunchroom/performance area, which is lighter and brighter:

New features there include lighting – stage lighting, too – and new heating equipment. You’ll notice that the pre-existing wood remains in many spots – here’s the library:

Along the staircases, original child-height handrails were preserved even as up-to-code ones were added:

The steps will be resurfaced, by the way.

Some things were removed – like the old hallway lockers. Some things that will stay are the portables left over from the campus’s time as home to Westside School (WSB sponsor). And this vintage 1940s clock that’s now in the office:

Its inner workings reflect the bell times of 70 years ago:

As we’ve been reporting, the campus also holds a new community-built playground; the hardscape near it was to be resurfaced starting earlier this week, the day after we toured on Tuesday. The contractor reached the “substantial completion” level one week ago, Skutack and Mieling told us, and now it’s time for finishing touches, as well as doublechecking and triplechecking. Overall, they say the project is on time and on budget. And when you go see it, look closely – even the historic masonry has been cleaned up.

WHAT’S NEXT: The September 4th ribboncutting – open to all – is scheduled for 11 am, according to a district document; we’re expecting a more formal announcement later in the summer. Meantime, as reported here earlier this month, Roxhill Elementary’s old home will be used for a section of the Interagency Academy alternative high school as well as several special-education programs. In the distant future, Hughes could be a candidate for an addition if the district needed more capacity; at one point this project was tentatively expected to add room, but it was ultimately planned as a simple renovation.

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FEEDBACK TIME! Which version of the future Roxhill Elementary at EC Hughes mural do you like best? Tue, 26 Jun 2018 23:18:29 +0000

Lots of new mural art happening around West Seattle – but you don’t always hear about it until it’s done. This time, not only has there been lots of advance word, now you have a chance to voice your views on the design options! It’s about the mural going on the corner shown above, as Roxhill Elementary moves to EC Hughes in Sunrise Heights:

Friends of Roxhill Elementary invites the community to view and share feedback on three options for a public art mural to be painted at the intersection of 32nd Ave SW and SW Holden St. Artist Henry Luke has been working with the Roxhill and southwest West Seattle community to identify themes and create a concept for the mural. Informed by hours of interviews, outreach and personal conversations, Henry has imagined a story of migration and resilience, with connections to history and our shared sense of home in the shadow of Mt. Rainier.

Share your thoughts in the online form linked here [where you can see the three options]. This is the story of Roxhill, told by our community members, featuring images and people important to our history and our future. We want the mural to be a beacon of safety, comfort and hope for all people, and reflect a shared sense of identity and meaning as we move into our new school. Please keep our community’s goals in mind as you share feedback and thoughts. Thank you!

This project has been made possible by a partnership between Friends of Roxhill Elementary and Seattle Public Schools, with funds provided by the Seattle Department of Neighborhoods Neighborhood Matching Fund. The mural will be painted later in the summer and unveiled in the fall.

Work is getting close to wrapping up at the renovated EC Hughes – we’ll take you inside the school in another story coming up!

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The ‘prank’ that wasn’t so funny: Best of Hands Barrelhouse asking for help after theft left iconic cow damaged Sun, 17 Jun 2018 19:30:13 +0000
(WSB photo, May)

One month ago, we reassured you that the future Best of Hands Barrelhouse would be keeping the iconic cow atop its building at 35th and Webster, while warning that it might disappear for a while for some sprucing-up. Part of its absence was unplanned, the Best of Hands crew says – it was briefly cownapped last week and taken to Chief Sealth International High School as what they say was a “senior prank.” They got it back but not without complications, according to this open letter they sent us today:

While we appreciate a good senior prank as well as the next person, I’m reaching out to the community here because in the process of stealing the cow, the kids broke one of the legs. Those who were involved with the prank also scaled our brand new electrical install in order to get on the roof (we now need to inspect this for any damage they may have caused). As many in this community know, we have spent over a year and tens of thousands of dollars bringing the iconic building up to code so that it can house a new endeavor. The actions of these individuals is highly disappointing, as it shows a complete disrespect for personal property, private property, and the West Seattle community at large. To add insult to injury, we had just finished cleaning and re-painting the cow the Monday before she was stolen. We will now have to take hours out of our busy schedules to do so again.

We know people have information about who is responsible for the prank, and we are asking them to step forward so we can hold the pranksters to account for their actions. If nobody comes forward, we will be getting the police involved. As for what the consequences should be for damaging our property and our landlord’s property (Clearview Eye & Laser), we have discussed compensation for the broken leg (and anything else that may have been damaged) and community service. We understand that these students will be graduating on Thursday, and would like to have a resolution before then. If college-bound, I don’t think dodging this responsibility will look good to the schools these individuals have applied to/been accepted to, as in this day and age, many colleges will revoke acceptance based on poor 4th quarter performance and extenuating circumstances.

We thank you for your time and help.

Best of Hands Barrelhouse

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ROXHILL/HUGHES PLAYGROUND: Moving a mountain … of wood chips Sun, 17 Jun 2018 04:26:21 +0000

Thanks to Jenny Rose Ryan from Friends of Roxhill Elementary for the photos and update from today’s wood-chip work party, two weeks after volunteers built the new community-powered playground at Roxhill’s future home, EC Hughes Elementary:

Thanks to about 30 volunteers, we made great progress moving this giant pile of wood chips underneath our new playground for Roxhill Elementary at E.C. Hughes. There’s still a bit of work to be done to prep the other half for the safety surface, so we did what we could. We are so grateful for neighbors, friends and community members who came out to chip in.

Questions, or want to get involved? Contact

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CRIME WATCH: Early-morning gunfire? Hear it on security video Sat, 16 Jun 2018 04:06:26 +0000

One more early-morning incident that woke up more than a few people early today – suspected gunfire heard in South Delridge, Westwood, and as far north as Sunrise Heights. This security video is from a camera near 17th and Cloverdale. We couldn’t find a police report number showing that any evidence of gunfire had been found; if anyone reading this knows of a related report number, the video’s owner was wondering how to call it to police’s attention in case the vehicle seen going by in the background was related. Meantime, just a reminder, if you think you hear gunfire, call 911, because the more calls they get, the more chance they have of figuring out where it happened and if there’s any damage/evidence.

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SATURDAY: Your chance to ‘chip in’ at new Roxhill/Hughes playground Wed, 13 Jun 2018 16:04:08 +0000 (WSB photo, June 2nd)

The playground is built – now, if you can spare a little time this Saturday, the students of Roxhill Elementary – getting ready to move into their new home – will be forever grateful. The reminder/request from Friends of Roxhill:

Friends of Roxhill Elementary needs your help to move wood chips at the new playground at E.C. Hughes, where Roxhill is relocating in the fall. We need as many volunteers as possible. Right now, we only have about 20 people signed up! Bring your whole family down to 7700 34th Ave SW on Saturday, June 16, from 9 to 11 a.m or from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sign up here:

This project has been made possible by a Seattle Department of Neighborhoods Neighborhood Matching Fund grant and a partnership between Friends of Roxhill Elementary and Seattle Public Schools. The Roxhill Elementary at E.C. Hughes playground will be open to the public in September.

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UPDATE: Volunteers build ‘more than a playground’ for Roxhill Elementary’s new home at EC Hughes Sat, 02 Jun 2018 17:59:14 +0000 (First 5 photos by WSB’s Patrick Sand)

10:59 AM: With just three months left until Roxhill Elementary students and staff move to renovated EC Hughes in Sunrise Heights, community members are busy today making sure the kids will have a great place to play.

It’s been one year since Friends of Roxhill Elementary – formerly its PTSA – started its campaign to get funding and other community support for the playground – and today they’re building it! Organizers say more than enough volunteers showed up to help, and shortly after 9 am, they got going. Roxhill principal Tarra Patrick is there to help too:


We’ll be checking back later for another progress update. If you weren’t able to help today, stay tuned for a future work party to get wood chips in place.

7:50 PM: One more view that we took late in the day:

And the final two photos and words of thanks are from Friends of Roxhill:

What a gorgeous day to build a playground!

We had about 75 volunteers through the course of the day taking on the huge task of putting together and installing (and putting in the concrete footings!) not just a playground… But what we think is the coolest new playground in West Seattle. With a prime all-day view of Rainier, we laughed, sighed and tried to stay hydrated while our community worked hard together. Minor mistakes were made. Tools were dropped. A few thumbs are bruised. Tomorrow, we will ache. But we did this, together. This is big. It’s more than a playground. It’s a celebration of new beginnings and a stake in the ground. It’s just the start.

Thank you, community, for your hard labor in support of our labor of love.

-Friends of Roxhill Elementary

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You can help! Build West Seattle’s next playground on Saturday Wed, 30 May 2018 00:31:54 +0000 (WSB photo, June 2017)

Though EC Hughes Elementary is getting some work done before Roxhill Elementary moves there in September, it doesn’t include the playground – so community volunteers are making that happen. This Saturday, you can help. From Friends of Roxhill:

Friends of Roxhill Elementary invites the greater West Seattle community to help build our new playground at E.C. Hughes, located at 7700 34th Avenue SW [map], this Saturday, June 2, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

We have two slots available: 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. or 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Snacks, water, coffee and lunch provided!

We’ll be led by PlayCreation representatives to assemble and build our selected Landscape Structures playground.

Please note that no children under age 14 may be within the build site. If you are a student in need of service hours, you may help put together components under adult supervision outside the build area, but all installation must be completed by those 17 and up.

We’re so excited to make this happen together. Together, our community can do anything. Also, there will be food. Did we mention that?

Can’t make it? Let us know and we’ll add you to the list for the next day of work: laying down all the engineered wood fiber so our playground has a safe surface for kids to land on. That date is still TBD. Email us at to be notified.

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While we’re talking about murals … what do you want to see at Roxhill/EC Hughes? Sat, 26 May 2018 04:38:40 +0000 (WSB photo)

Tonight we seem to have an art theme going. Above is artist Henry Luke, who is leading the community mural project for the future home of Roxhill Elementary at renovated EC Hughes Elementary in Sunrise Heighs. He’s been offering workshops for youth interested in getting involved – and now there are two chances for everyone, all ages, to get involved, at two design meetings:

These will be a chance to discuss our ideas for the mural design which will be painted 8′ x 40′ at the new EC Hughes playground this summer. What is important to illustrate about the cultures and communities of Roxhill? How do you want to be represented in this mural? What is your vision for a bright future for the neighborhood?

Sunday, May 27, 11 am
DubSea Coffee: 9910 8th Ave SW

Tuesday, May 29, 6:30 pm
Southwest Branch Library: 9010 35th Ave SW

The mural will be painted this summer after the new playground is installed.

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BIZNOTE: Don’t panic if you see the cow come down during Best of Hands Barrelhouse work Mon, 14 May 2018 18:29:28 +0000 (WSB photo)

It’s been somewhat slow going for the Best of Hands Barrelhouse crew as they continue remodeling the former deli space at 35th and Webster. After a few recent reader questions, we checked back in with Nick Marianetti, who replied with this update:

Things are moving along quickly now that SCL and PSE have us on their schedules and are installing the power upgrades we require to operate a brewing facility and taproom. Build out on the inside has been moving along steadily, and our neighbors will begin to see changes to the outside of the building as well. … We’ll be pulling off old siding and replacing it; re-roofing the taproom side (old market side); installing new HVAC systems; painting the whole building, and adding a patio on the south wall of the taproom! We will also be giving the iconic cow a new paint job, so if we’re required to take her off the roof to do so, fear not, she will return to her perch atop the building!

Opening dates are still a moving target at this time. Once the power installs are completed we can install our brewing system, and then we will have a better idea of how quickly we can be up and brewing.

For more backstory, check out our first report on the Best of Hands plan in February 2017.

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35th/Holden crash, after police pullover attempt Tue, 17 Apr 2018 02:54:07 +0000

Thanks to Bruce for the tip about that crash at 35th SW/SW Holden. Police tell us they were trying to pull over the driver of the white car, but the driver wouldn’t stop – until hitting the parked car. No injuries, according to police; they told us the pullover attempt was related to an investigation of someone reported to have shoplifted at Home Depot. They were still questioning a possible suspect at last report.

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UPDATE: Police investigation blocking southbound 35th SW at Webster Tue, 03 Apr 2018 00:15:09 +0000

5:15 PM: Police at the scene aren’t saying much but the black car in the southbound lane of 35th SW just north of SW Webster is stolen, according to scanner traffic, and officers are searching for two men last seen running west from there. A K-9 team is now joining the search.

6:06 PM: No luck so far in finding the suspects. The car is no longer in the travel lane.

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