West Seattle, Washington
Since part 1 of our Christmas-lights search, our chances to keep scouring the streets have been limited by personal holiday activities (like getting a reasonably priced tree). But others have provided more info on WS lights for you to enjoy. For starters, one e-mail tipster mentioned that Fauntlee Hills is nicely lit as usual (here’s how to find that area), and it’s also written up in this region-wide Times roundup today (along with a few other WS spots). Yet another address is mentioned at the end of a touching letter-to-the-editor in this week’s Herald. We’ll be out searching again this weekend so please share your discoveries by e-mailing us.
What’s going on here this week? First the stabbing, now a shooting reported outside an Arbor Heights home. Very short articles this morning from the P-I and Times. Is it the turbulent weather (which at this moment features howling wind following a night of pounding rain, and forecasts threaten worse on the way)?
The PR people for Beato Food & Wine, at the ex-O2-post-Ovio site, tell us opening night is set for Dec. 19, one week from tonight, with hours set for 5-11 pm Tuesdays-Sundays. They also mention a special New Year’s Eve dinner in the works, which dovetails with a site visitor’s suggestion today that we collect info on WS New Year’s Eve doings and add it to the Holiday Stuff page — great idea, will start looking, and everyone’s welcome to e-mail us now with news of any special local events that night.
So reports the Seattle Times today. We didn’t know the victim, Lyn Wesselhoeft, but from the online references we just found (including a past mention on the Fauntleroy Church site), a lot of people here probably did; the Times story says she moved to NM just a few months ago.
In no particular order, here are the results of our first West Seattle Blog Posse Cruise for Christmas Lights. More to come …
BEACH DRIVE/ALKI/HARBOR: Sad to say you can drive the entire waterfront stretch without many significant sightings, except of course the brightest WS Christmas house of all, the Menashe mansionette on Beach Drive (a few blocks south of Shore Place). From there, we had to drive all the way to 1671 Harbor for anything on the waterfront worth writing home about (at least as of last night).
ALSO NOTABLE TO THE NORTH: A block on the west side of Walnut, south of Hinds, has several bright spots, as does a short stretch of 40th, north of Charlestown, and the east side of 41st, heading north from Manning. Then on the SW corner of 41st and Hinds, there’s a house with a novel deployment of light strands — two dangling in the air between the porch and the front-gate arbor, like power lines. Back on Walnut, we saw a few bright spots north of Stevens (back side of WS High School). (This map will give you a general guide to the entire area we just mentioned.)
THEN IN THE NORTHWEST QUADRANT: If you love the famous light-encrusted tree at Point Defiance Zoolights, you’ll love the tree outside a home on the west side of 45th, south of Lander (near Lafayette Elementary). And not far from there, 47th both just north and just south of Admiral impressed us too.
One more reminder, if you want to share a light location with your fellow West Seattleites, e-mail us and we’ll be thrilled to share.
Usually we just bring you pre-weekend “here’s what’s happening” blurbs. But so much is going on this week before the weekend, besides basic holiday stuff, so here goes:
–TUESDAY NIGHT: An e-mail tipster reports that West Seattle’s own Mac “Santa Mac” Macdonald is producing “Rock ‘n’ Roll Christmas,” a benefit show at 7:30 pm @ McCaw Hall, and promises it’s “the most fun to be had this holiday season.”
–THURSDAY NIGHT: The next Junction Art Walk, 6-8 pm, starting at Divina, with 12 participating locations (we’ll post artist specifics by Thursday). Then get involved in civics and meander over to the Southwest Precinct at 8 pm as the city Design Review Board makes its pronouncement on the huge Fauntleroy Place development.
-Just back from our first official drive in search of WS’s best Christmas lights. Will post our findings sometime tomorrow. To generalize wildly — so far, the north side of WS appears to have many more lavish displays than the south side.
-Sorry if this is old news to Morgan Junctionites; just noticed the big CLOSED FOR REMODELING, REOPENING FALL 2007 signs in the windows of Washington Federal Savings at Cali & Fauntleroy. Somehow you gotta wonder, will they really reopen as a bank? That corner is so incredibly prime … you’d think those “mixed-use” developers would be clamoring for it.
-Earlier this fall, when we posted a few times about best-selling author Terry Brooks (who lives in WS at least part of the time), someone wrote to say that other best-selling authors live in WS, including a couple, Skye Moody & G.M. Ford. If that’s so, apparently they won’t be here much longer, according to her MySpace page, which mentions they’re moving to the Oregon Coast next month.
We’ve heard Starbucks checks the temperature of its drinks, but how about the temperature of its signs? (Taken half an hour ago at the ex-Rainier Roaster.)
Just back from two of the Christmas Ship‘s three WS stops tonight (its WS finale for ’06 is tomorrow, Don Armeni, 7:10 pm, music by the Dickens Carolers, seen and heard in WS just last weekend for the Junction Tree Lighting). Missed the early stop @ Seacrest; intended just to enjoy the Lowman stop, but a member of the WSB entourage suggested we check out its Alki stop too, so off we went. At Lowman, the bonfire was the centerpiece, neatly held in a cordoned-off fire ring (obviously brought in by the parks crew, as fires otherwise aren’t allowed there), unlike a few years ago, when we remember a pile of pallets set ablaze with great abandon. At Alki, the non-cordoned bonfire was almost an afterthought at one heck of a party, with a live band on shore, a huge city-provided tent, and free cookies and cocoa/cider in Tully’s cups (amusing since the smaller tent next door belonged to Starbucks, offering tiny free samples of gingerbread lattes). We wondered between stops if the Vashon Island Chorale would sing the same half-dozen or so songs at both stops; answer: no. Just one overlap, the appropriate finale “We Wish You a Merry Christmas.” Big crowds at both stops, thanks to the cleared-up-in-time weather, and the Alki event had quite the afterparty going long after the Christmas Ship vanished into the downtown glow.
Taking a quick break from the tour of tree lots … so far, if your budget really requires the cheapest tree you can find, Home Depot is the place in WS (you can get a 6′ Douglas fir for about twenty bucks). More sites to visit, so that may not turn out to ultimately be the cheapest tree in WS, but in case you’re going out this afternoon, now that the rain has stopped (paused?), did want to mention it. We personally still mourn the old White Center Chubby & Tubby, where you could get a $5 “Charlie Brown style” scraggly little tree. More later …
We’re just trouble magnets today. After the drama of the 35th (and surrounding streets) shutdown earlier (see posts below), on our way home from an evening outing just now, the Fauntleroy/Alaska intersection got blocked, as we approached it, by a police car arriving to check out a three-car smashup that appeared to have happened moments earlier. Didn’t look too serious, but the city 911 log page does show a fire-engine callout, so things may be a little jammed there till later tonight.
Just back from a trip to check out 35th — all open now — we wound up behind what was probably the last of the officers, two guys in a scary charcoal-gray humvee-ish vehicle you probably wouldn’t ever want to see pull up in your neighborhood. 4 PM UPDATE: Now there’s a brief story in the P-I.
According to a blurb
currently atop this news site that was atop a news site for a while, Ã‚Â “a man has barricaded himself inside an apartment” and that’s what’s going on along 35th (see below).
This is the usual greeting over the loudspeaker from the Christmas Ship as it arrives at one of its stops, blazing with light, serenading everyone on shore with live Christmas songs from performers on board. And this is the big weekend for our part of town. Here’s hoping the weather won’t be too bad. First, on Saturday, the Christmas Ship (and whichever boats choose to accompany it) will pull up to Seacrest Pier at 5:15 pm, with Northwest Girlchoir Vivace performing. Then it goes back downtown to swap out choirs; with the Vashon Island Chorale on board, it’ll visit Lowman Beach at 8:50 pm Saturday, and then sail back along West Seattle’s west-facing shoreline, to reach Alki Beach for a stop at 9:40. All three of those stops are supposed to have bonfires, by the way. If you can’t catch the Christmas Ship on Saturday, it will make one more WS stop — Sunday, 7:10 pm, Don Armeni, also with a bonfire. The full schedule is linked from our WS Holiday Stuff page, as are other holiday activities in WS this weekend, including tonight’s tree lighting @ Our Lady of Guadalupe. (We’ll be out tree-shopping too, and planning to post a price-check here at some point!)
35th is blocked off right now south of the Austin vicinity. WS Blogger Spouse had to detour onto a side street … and a couple more of those streets are blocked off too. Lots of police. Not sure what’s going on — WSBS is going back to see how close it’s possible to get to check it out.