West Seattle parks 1931 results

FOLLOWUP: Checking back on Lincoln Park South Play Area

That’s one of the photos Tom Trulin sent last week, showing significant progress on the years-overdue rebuild of the Lincoln Park South Play Area. When we published an update last week, Seattle Parks told us they hoped to have more information “early (this) week” on when the playground would open. So we asked for an update, and received this reply: “The play area is still anticipated to be completed by the end of the month – no set date for opening.” (The month ends one week from today.) It’s been closed for seven years.

YOU CAN HELP: Volunteer for the new Camp Long Climbing Corps

A unique outdoor volunteering opportunity is open at Camp Long – you are invited to join the park’s Climbing Corps, helping more people enjoy its historic Schurman Rock! From Camp Long’s Matt Kostle:

We need folks to volunteer as part of our new Camp Long Climbing Corps program! This is an opportunity to get trained in the skill of belaying folks on a top rope rock climbing setup so you can help with our Tuesday Rocks series of free and open to the public rock climbing events on Tuesday evenings in August!

No prior experience is needed and this is an opportunity to volunteer supporting a really fun program which is often many kids’ first climbing experience and you can help them enjoy the magic that Schurman is as the oldest human-made rock climbing wall in the country! This is a new pilot program and we are hoping this allows us to expand our programming but we need community support to make it happen! Come be part of the Camp Long community and help others climb on a piece of history!

A training session for volunteers is planned next Tuesday (July 30). Sign up here!

FOLLOWUP: Morgan Junction Park addition site cleared, with soil work approaching

Thanks for the tip. Another sign today that the city really is getting close to the long-planned soil cleanup at the Morgan Junction Park addition site – crews were there today to clear the fenced-off areas, including a junk-hauling truck and police in unmarked vehicles. There’ve been signs of camping there recently, so we have an inquiry out with the city’s Unified Care Team about whether this was part of their process. We reported on Thursday that the Seattle Parks project manager for the expansion told the Morgan Community Association this week that the soil cleanup is scheduled to start August 8th. Once 16 feet of contaminated dirt has been removed, clean fill will be brought in, and the site will be seeded, for potential open-space use until the actual park expansion is built next year.

2 more Don Armeni Boat Ramp signage notes

More on Don Armeni Boat Ramp signage. First, temporary signs:

Thanks for the tips about these no-parking signs, both inside the park and on Harbor Avenue along the park. They’re for Saturday, July 20, entire day, in the name of MJ68 Productions, for “filming.” The company’s credits, listed online, would suggest the strong likelihood of a car commercial; we have a message out to try to ascertain.

Also at Don Armeni:

(Photo by Stewart L.)

When we reported Monday on that new signage, some commenters wondered how the stated exception for people going fishing would work, especially considering a salmon season is coming up. We asked Parks, and spokesperson Rachel Schulkin told us no exceptions: “The gates will remain locked until 6 AM. This is a short-term response to mitigate crime and dangerous activity taking place along Alki and at this parking lot.”

PREVIEW: Two West Seattle outdoor concerts in the next three nights!

Ready to take a chair, blanket, and/or picnic dinner to the park for a free concert? You have two chances in the next three nights:

(WSB photo, 2022 Big Band Concert in the Park)

TUESDAY – BIG BAND CONCERT IN THE PARK: 7 pm tomorrow (July 16), High Point
Commons Park
(Lanham and Graham) fills with the swinging sounds of the West Seattle Big Band, directed by Jim Edwards. The park concert is a midsummer tradition, sponsored by the West Seattle Grand Parade. This is the 27th year!

THURSDAY – ADMIRAL MUSIC IN THE PARKS, CONCERT #1: 6:30 pm Thursday (July 18), one of this year’s three new venues (plus a new name) for the concert series presented by the Admiral Neighborhood Association – this show is at Belvedere Park (3600 SW Admiral Way), with Troy Aylesworth and The Potholes. Also new, you can order a picnic spread in advance from Soirée, to be delivered to the park!

Diver to hospital after incident off Seacrest

In this morning’s traffic roundup, we briefly mentioned SFD units blocking part of Harbor Avenue because of a medical response at Seacrest. Though the callout was not listed as a water rescue, we later learned from readers in the area that the person who was treated by SFD medics had been diving. Dispatch audio indicated he was unconscious when brought out of the water around 9 am. Radio exchanges also indicated that he would be taken to Virginia Mason Hospital, which has a hyperbaric chamber. Seattle Fire spokesperson David Cuerpo tells WSB that the 63-year-old man was assessed as being in critical condition when transported to VM.

New signs at Don Armeni Boat Ramp

Thanks to Stewart L. for the tip and the photo above. Part of the city effort to rein in problems along Alki/Harbor Avenues has been signage, and here’s more. He says these signs were installed Friday or early Saturday at Don Armeni Boat Ramp, which has become more of a hotspot for trouble from stunt driving all the way to murder (two unsolved shooting deaths at or near the park in 13 months).

(WSB photo)

Police have been stationed at the park on some nights as well.

P.S. Our archives remind us that this isn’t the first time signage has been added in hopes of tamping down on some problems at the boat-ramp park.

FOLLOWUP: Progress at Lincoln Park South Play Area

11:56 AM: Thanks to Tom Trulin for the photos taken today as the years-overdue Lincoln Park South Play Area replacement enters the home stretch. Seattle Parks most recently told us it would be complete this month. Tom’s photos show some of the marine-theme features in the design created with community input six years ago.

This past Friday marked seven years since the old south play area’s shutdown because of safety concerns from wood damage.

At the time in July 2017, Parks said it might take a year to fix or replace the damaged structure. We’re checking to see if they have an official projected opening date yet, now that this appears to be down to the final stages of construction.

4:56 PM: Parks spokesperson Karen O’Connor replies, “We are working through some final construction items. We should have a better idea early next week on an opening date.”

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.

ALL-WHEELS IN MORGAN JUNCTION: One step closer to a ‘skate dot’ design for park

By Jason Grotelueschen
Reporting for West Seattle Blog

Members of the Morgan Junction All-Wheels Association (MJAWA) met online last week to discuss the latest plans and ideas for an all-wheeled “skate dot” area (dedicated to activities like skating, scooters, and biking) in the south part of eventually expanding Morgan Junction Park.

The overall “Morgan Junction Addition Project” timeline from Seattle Parks can be found here, with completion expected by Spring of 2025. For historical context: The site was purchased by the city in 2014 and then “landbanked” for park expansion (see our prior coverage here; the site was formerly a dry cleaning business, and “soil remediation” work has been required). 

In recent months, MJAWA has been gathering community feedback about their three potential design concepts for the all-wheels area, which would be up to 1,500 square feet, within the larger park:

Read More

UPDATE: Death investigation at Junction Plaza Park

(WSB photo)

1:07 PM: Thanks for the tips. A man was found dead this morning on a bench at Junction Plaza Park. SFD was dispatched just after 11:30 am and verified that the man had died; police responded to the scene too. We don’t yet know anything about the circumstances of his death or the discovery of his body, but we’re not seeing any indication of a crime investigation. Official determination of the cause of death will be up to the King County Medical Examiner’s Office (whose crew has arrived to take away the man’s body – that’s their van in our photo above).

4:24 PM: SFD says the man was in his early 50s.

ADDED TUESDAY AFTERNOON: According to the KCMEO, he was 52, and died of an unintentional overdose: “Acute drug intoxication including methamphetamine.”

OUTDOOR MOVIES: Camp Long needs your help choosing this summer’s lineup

June 30, 2024 4:42 pm
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle Outdoor Movies | West Seattle parks

(WSB file photo from a movie night at Camp Long)

Camp Long has set the date for three outdoor movies this August – now the park staff is hoping you’ll help choose which movies are shown. Movie nights will be Fridays – August 2, 9, 23 – “shortly after dusk.” You’re invited to choose your first, second, and third choices from a list of more than 30 movies – go here to cast your votes!

VIDEO: Maarten Park now open after weekend dedication ceremony


Story and photos by Jason Grotelueschen
Reporting for West Seattle Blog

A new West Seattle community park with an inspiring origin story was officially opened to the public in an emotional celebration ceremony and ribbon-cutting on Sunday.

The new park, at the south end of the West Seattle Church of the Nazarene property at 4201 SW Juneau St, is called Maarten Park, named after neighbor and congregation member Maarten Verburg, who passed away in 2023 after battling leukemia, and who was instrumental in helping to realize the vision of converting the space into a park.

More than a decade ago, the church began plans to revitalize and redevelop its property, which included building six townhomes, and utilizing the outdoor open space known informally as “the park” which has been used over the years for outdoor movies and gatherings and other events. Sunday’s ceremony, which we previewed earlier last week, represented an important step in officially establishing the park as a true community resource, according to church leaders. 

Here’s a video of the ribbon-cutting portion of the ceremony, with Verburg’s wife Marcy Mabry and son Jakob doing the honors, and with an introductory assist from pastor Shaun Mattson, as kids eagerly waited for the park to open: 

Prior to the service, the congregation held a “church service in the park,” during which Mattson talked about the history of the church property and the support and generosity of Verburg, whom he said “started as a neighbor, became a friend, and turned into a church member” and was a “gift to us all”:

As the service concluded, the congregation and visitors moved toward the south end of the property, for the park dedication ceremony:

Mattson (at center) invited Joe Paar (at left), a local developer who was instrumental in helping with the church’s property plans including the development of the park, to say a few words, with help from church family member Jayden (at right) who held the ribbon-cutting scissors:

The group also acknowledged the efforts of John Mullan and his team at PlayCreation for donating time and materials to help get the project completed.

Mabry (with her son) then shared that her husband “loved living in this neighborhood; he loved this community and this church,” and she said she’s thankful “for all of the great things to come from having this space for kids, neighbors and community to gather:” 

You may notice in the photos that both Mabry and Mattson were wearing Dutch wooden shoes, in honor of Verburg (who was born in the Netherlands, and famously wore the shoes often while working on the church grounds). Mattson joked that “You could always hear Maarten coming!” and Mabry said that she and Maarten even wore the shoes during their wedding):

After the ribbon was cut and the kids and their families happily ran into the park to play, the group prepared and enjoyed a BBQ lunch:

The park itself includes open play areas and playground equipment, in addition to toys for younger kids to enjoy: 

Maarten Park is open to the public, south of the church building at the southwest corner of 42nd Ave SW and Juneau St. 

‘Avoid the charcoal’: Fire damage at Lowman Beach Park

(WSB photos)

“Somebody set fire to the forts,” a little girl informed us as we photographed the blackened driftwood on the shore at Lowman Beach Park. We went there after multiple tips about fires there this morning; those aren’t allowed anywhere at this park.

The SFD log shows two calls, one at about 4:50 am, one at about 7:50 am, both categorized as “brush fire” although we didn’t see any sign of burned vegetation (SFD’s automated log has a limited number of classifications). We did see extensive driftwood damage; impossible to tell if any was from prior dates. The little girl’s mom warned her to “avoid the charcoal – the burned part.” Lowman Beach’s north side was restored to a more natural state in a project completed two years ago.

WEEKEND PREVIEW: First ‘Purrdie Burrdie in the Park’ on Saturday

(WSB photo, December 2023)

We first introduced you to West Seattle artist/author Danitra Hunter almost four years ago, as she worked on a children’s book featuring a character she created while working at the West Seattle/Fauntleroy YMCA (WSB sponsor), Purrdie Burrdie, who encourages kids to love themselves. She launched her book a year later. And kids can get free copies during a series of events Danitra is leading in West Seattle parks for the next four Saturdays:

As shown above, her first event is at Roxhill Park (29th/Barton) tomorrow, 1-5 pm. Thanks to an Art in the Parks grant, Danitra says, these are free family events, all ages welcome.

WADING POOLS: Season starts Saturday, but West Seattle is down one. Here’s why

That’s the wading pool at EC Hughes Playground. When Seattle Parks wading pools start opening for the season tomorrow (Saturday, June 22), it won’t be ready to go. We discovered this while checking the Parks pool-info page – “E.C. Hughes Playground wading pool is closed for repairs.” No explanation, and our subsequent visit to the park (2805 SW Holden) didn’t show anything obviously wrong with the pool, but we did see evidence of some water-related work elsewhere in the park, and Parks spokesperson Christina Hirsch tells us that’s related:

Our Facilities crews are addressing a pipe issue at this location. We replaced a substantial section of the waterline and when we re-energized the system another section failed. We are currently working with a contractor to replace another hundred feet of mainline using vertical boring to avoid a large excavation on the site. We hope to have a schedule for that work next week. Once we get that complete, barring any other issues, we should be able to open things up rapidly.

So for the start of the season, West Seattle will have three wading pools:

Lincoln Park (8011 Fauntleroy Way SW), daily starting Saturday, noon-7 pm, last day September 2
Delridge (4501 Delridge Way SW), Wednesdays-Thursdays-Fridays, noon-5:30 pm, June 26-August 16
Hiawatha (2700 California SW), Thursdays-Fridays-Saturdays, noon-5:30 pm, June 27-August 17

(When EC Hughes does open, its scheduled open days are Mondays, Tuesdays, and Sundays.) Remember that on cooler days (below 70) the pools generally don’t open; you can check the status every morning by calling 206-684-7796 (recorded info updated by 9:30 am), and we also include wading-pool info in our daily “what’s happening” lists.

P.S. Highland Park Spraypark is already open and continues daily operation, 11 am-8 pm, at 1100 SW Cloverdale, through September 2.

FOLLOWUP: Maarten Park to be dedicated Sunday

(WSB photo – part of Maarten Park)

More than a decade after the West Seattle Church of the Nazarene embarked on a project to redevelop part of its property long known as “the park,” what remains as open space is truly becoming one. The church will dedicated what it calls Maarten Park in a community celebration on Sunday. This update is from Marcy Mabry:

This Sunday, June 23, will be the grand opening celebration of Maarten Park! Located next to West Seattle Church of the Nazarene on the 5900 block of 42nd Ave, the church dreamed of this greenspace becoming a park where neighbors and kids can gather, have fun, get to know each other, and build community. Named for our neighbor and congregant Maarten Verburg, who passed away in 2023, Maarten loved anything that brought people together, and he loved a good party – so let’s celebrate!

The day will start with a special church service outside in the park at 10 am. Following, around 11:15, will be the opening ceremony. Then we party! At noon, hamburgers & hot dogs should be ready, feel free to bring a dish to share. West Seattle’s own The Viking Surfers will be playing a set around 1:30. ALL are welcome!

West Seattle Naz is a small church that does so much for so many with so little, and their gift of this greenspace transforming into a park for the community could not have happened without the generosity of friends, neighbors, congregants, and family who have pitched in – whether it be financially, with volunteering, and with cheering on the crew! Very special thanks to John Mullan and his crew at PlayCreation for donating time and materials to make this dream a reality!

There’s still more to do to make this an even more awesome park: Park lighting, more outdoor toys, hillside climb & explore objects, outdoor lighting, and recurring maintenance costs. If you’re able to donate to support the park, you can do so at either link:
westseattlenaz.org/about-us/maarten-park
gofundme.com/f/maarten-park

FOLLOWUP: Lincoln Park South Play Area completion timeline extended

When last we asked Seattle Parks about the Lincoln Park South Play Area timeline – with construction finally under way, seven years after it was closed for wood damage – they told us it was expected to be complete this month. We went over the other day for a look, and noticed that despite June having less than two weeks left, the play area did not appear anywhere near complete. As the top photo shows, the new play structure is in place, but otherwise, the site still looks fairly raw:

The project webpage hadn’t been updated since January when we looked on Monday before sending Parks’ media team an inquiry. They have yet to reply, but we noticed that our inquiry has led to a small update on the website, where the anticipated completion date has changed from June to July.

SUMMER: Colman Pool’s 7-days-a-week season starts Saturday

This is the third-to-last day you’ll find Colman Pool covered in early afternoon, for a while – the historic heated-salt-water pool on the Lincoln Park shore goes 7 days a week starting Saturday (June 22), just in time for possible mid-80s temperatures! The season schedule is now online – noon-7 pm daily, broken into lap swim, rec swim, and swim lesson sessions. Also remember that the pool will be closed to the public five days for swim meets, June 27-29 and July 12-13. Fees are listed here; if you’re planning on going often, you might consider getting a pass. Colman Pool is scheduled to close for the season after Labor Day.

WEST SEATTLE WEEKEND SCENE: Mountain Fest at Camp Long

June 16, 2024 3:28 pm
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 |   West Seattle news | West Seattle parks

(Photos by Omar Abdulkadir for WSB)

Park visitors of all ages got a chance to experience climbing during Camp Long‘s Mountain Fest on Saturday. It’s the annual chance to explore the park’s unique features that give you the chance to climb without leaving West Seattle:

Mountain Fest also provided opportunities to learn about wildlife – whether from The Falconer‘s raptors like this owl …

or from Seattle Parks naturalists who were there to answer questions about other creatures you might see (all in a day’s work for them, since Camp Long is an Environmental Learning Ceter):

If you didn’t get to Mountain Fest, Camp Long is open to visitors at other times too – the main entrance is at 35th/Dawson, by the historic lodge, which is available for rentals (as are the 10 cabins at the park)

Camp Long invites you to come on up for Mountain Fest 2024 on Saturday

June 12, 2024 3:13 pm
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 |   West Seattle festivals | West Seattle news | West Seattle parks

Another festival this Saturday – but this one lasts all day, so you can get to this as well as the Morgan Junction Community Festival! West Seattle’s environmental-learning center/park Camp Long is inviting you to its 2024 Mountain Fest, 11 am-5 pm Saturday. The park’s famous climbing rock/wall is a major attraction, as is its challenge course:

But you don’t have to climb to have a good time at Mountain Fest – lots of free fun is promised for those who plan to keep both feet on the ground, too. Here’s the map of what they’re planning, and where. (For bird fans, note that The Falconer is scheduled to be there!) Get more Mountain Fest info from this Parkways post. Haven’t been to Camp Long? 5200 35th SW.

COUNTDOWN: 5 days until Morgan Junction Community Festival, featuring MJ All-Wheels Association’s next community meeting

June 10, 2024 10:57 pm
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 |   West Seattle festivals | West Seattle news | West Seattle parks | WS & Sports

(WSB photo – banner on kiosk at Morgan Junction Park)

We’re counting down to the next major summer event in West Seattle – the Morgan Junction Community Festival, 10 am-2 pm Saturday (June 15) in and around Morgan Junction Park (6413 California SW). Among the festival features will be your next chance to participate in planning the “all-wheels area” that’s on the drawing board for the southwest side of the soon-to-be-expanded park. The Morgan Junction All-Wheels Association has sent their official announcement of what they’re planning as part of the festival:

The Morgan Junction All-Wheels Association (MJAWA) is excited to announce our second community meeting for the Morgan Junction Park expansion.

Hosted at the Morgan Junction Community Festival, attendees will have the opportunity to explore the three skate spot design options from legendary West Seattle-based skatepark builder Grindline, participate in the interactive Skate Like a Girl “MJ Ramp-age,” and be entered to win a skate prize from By and By skate shop or project t-shirt. All community members are invited to vote for their favorite design on-site on Saturday, June 15.

“We are excited to present these design options to the Morgan Junction community,” said Matt Fluegge, CEO of Grindline. “Our goal is to create a space that not only meets the needs of local kids, but also enhances the overall park experience for everyone. The feedback we’ve received has been invaluable, and we’re committed to building a park that the community will be proud of.”

Grindline has incorporated feedback from the first community meeting on April 27, as well as a Seattle Parks and Recreation survey at last year’s Morgan Junction Community Festival.

In addition to the design presentations, Skate Like a Girl will be sponsoring the “MJ Ramp-age” feature. This interactive area will allow attendees to move real ramps around a 1,500 sq ft space, providing a hands-on experience to explore how different park features might feel and flow together.

Kristin Ebeling, executive director of Skate Like a Girl, added, “Skateboarding has the power to transform lives. It is both a physical and creative outlet with the power to build intergenerational community. We are proud to be part of a project that will create an accessible entry point for emerging skaters and look forward to seeing the positive impact it will have on the Morgan Junction neighborhood.”

“Skateboarding teaches perseverance, creativity, and resilience,” said Jason Glover, Chief Sealth International High School teacher and local skateboarder. “I’ve seen firsthand how students who skateboard develop a strong sense of self-confidence and community. It’s more than just a sport; it’s a way for kids to express themselves and build essential life skills.”

Look for MJAWA in Morgan Junction Park during the festival, 10 am-2 pm Saturday. As the week continues, we’ll preview other festival features – entertainment, vendors, activities. (WSB is media sponsor for the festival, which is presented by the Morgan Community Association.)

UPDATE: Before truly summery weather, extra cleanup/maintenance for Alki Beach Park

ORIGINAL WEDNESDAY REPORT: Thanks to Alki Community Council president Charlotte Starck for the tip. Extra city workers were at Alki Beach Park this morning for a “multi-district cleanup.” When we went over to find out what that entailed, a Parks worker told us it was over, explaining that they had focused on work such as tidying up the flower beds near the bathhouse and painting the restroom building further east:

The worker told us a new mural is planned for that building. We’ve had an inquiry out to Parks HQ asking for more details on what was done today (we’ll update whenever we hear back); the beach no doubt will be busy this weekend, with temperatures forecast to approach 80.

P.S. The Alki Community Council hopes to see you for its Summer Celebration at Alki Playfield, 5-8 pm Thursday, June 20 – our calendar listing has entertainment and other details for this free event.

ADDED THURSDAY: Here’s the response we received from Parks spokesperson Christina Hirsch:

These events are called “jamborees”, and they are cooperative projects amongst our district staff who work on larger scale projects rotating throughout the districts as the need arises. At the peak of this project, there were approximately 25 parks maintenance staff from 3 districts. This event included mowing, planting, chip spreading, and other grounds and maintenance activities. The teams were there for approximately 3 hours completing these tasks.