Entries from November 2010
November 30th, 2010 by Thea
Now that Thanksgiving has passed, it seems the holiday season is upon us. And just in time, the Queen Anne Helpline and the Boy Scouts of America Troop 72 have opened up their annual Christmas tree lot in the Upper Queen Anne Safeway parking lot.
Staffed by neighborhood volunteers, Scouts, and their families, the tree lot offers trees (Noble, Tannenbaum, Fraser, Douglas, and Norway Spruce), wreaths, and garlands. And on top of that, 100 percent of the proceeds benefit the Queen Anne Helpline and Scouts Troop 72.
The tree lot will be open now until Sunday, December 21 (or until the trees sell out). Want to get a tree? Swing by during the following hours:
- Monday through Thursday—12 p.m. to 8 p.m.
- Friday—12 p.m. to 9 p.m.
- Saturday—9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
- Sunday—9 a.m. to 8 p.m.
More information here.
Tags: Boy Scouts, Christmas Tree Lot, Christmas trees, Queen Anne Helpline, Troop 72
November 30th, 2010 by Thea
Update 12/1 2:30 p.m.: “We are shooting to open up on Saturday,” says Menchie’s representative Elizabeth Garner.
We first told you that frozen yogurt chain Menchie’s would be moving into the corner spot of the Sweetbrier building, at Queen Anne Ave N and W Crockett St, back in September.
Well I have good news for all you frozen yogurt fans out there—according to Menchie’s representative Elizabeth Garner, the new cool sweet spot is less than a week out. The shop will be “opening within the next week (if everything goes as planned),” Garner says.
California-based Menchie’s has locations all over the U.S. and Canada, including two in Washington—in Federal Way and Vancouver. The Queen Anne store will be the first location in the Seattle area.
Menchie’s offers a rotating selection of frozen yogurts and toppings, from classic sprinkles, to local fruits. Read more about the frozen yogurt shop in our past coverage.
We’re waiting to hear back on exactly what day the store is planning to open, and will keep you posted.
Tags: frozen yogurt, Menchie's, openings, Queen Anne Ave N, Sweetbrier
November 29th, 2010 by Thea
Queen Anne educational non-profit Successful School in Action (SSIA) is kicking off its 2010-2011 presentation series with a conversation with Seattle school board president Michael DeBell, and central area director Nancy Coogan. The talk will be held on Wednesday, December 1 at 7 p.m. at the McClure Middle School cafeteria.
The event will be broken into two parts. The first, called Let’s Move, will take place from 7 to 7:30 p.m. Representatives from the Mayor’s office, who are working to launch the Seattle initiative of Michelle Obama’s national Let’s Move campaign addressing the issue of childhood obesity, will be in attendance.
In Seattle, health indicators give us a clear picture of alarmingly high obesity rates, with unacceptable disparities based on income and race. This is a problem that the entire community must understand and address. The Mayor’s Office and Public Health- Seattle King County are working on a public education campaign to showcase causes of childhood obesity and provide key action steps parents, kids, community members, educators, and others can take to help reverse this epidemic.
The second portion, from 7:30 to 8:45 p.m. will include an introduction to Nancy Coogan and a short presentation from Michael DeBell, and a community discussion and Q&A session that will cover the following topics:
- What’s next with the new Student Assignment Plan?
- The new school reports
- What an area director actually does?
For more information, contact Successful Schools in Action at 206-375-5375.
Tags: Michael DeBell, Nancy Coogan, Seattle Public Schools, SSIA
November 29th, 2010 by Thea
Update 12/2 4 p.m.: As Friday inches closer, new Queen Anne merchants have joined the long list of those participating in the Holiday Magic celebration. Check it out below.
Upper Queen Anne’s annual Holiday Magic festival is coming up this Friday, December 3 from 3 to 9 p.m. on Queen Anne Ave N, from McGraw to Galer.
The celebration, put on by the Greater Queen Anne Chamber of Commerce, will be chock-full of holiday fun, including discounts at local businesses up and down Queen Anne Ave, snacks, songs courtesy of the John Hay Chorus (from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. starting at HomeStreet Bank), a visit from Santa Claus (at HomeStreet Bank), art projects for kids, a firetruck from Station 8, prize drawings, chair massages, the annual tree lighting at Bethany Presbyterian Church at 6 p.m., and more.
According to the chamber’s marketing director Mary Chapman, the the merchants along Queen Anne Ave pay out of pocket to cover the costs of the festive street tree lighting—all the more reason to invest in LED lights for the trees along the street.
“Yes, we are going green, using less electricity and we have an agreement with Artist Touch Landscaping to do our lights for the next 5 years,” she says. “They store the lights and put them up the following year. Previously cheap electric bulb strings were bought, cut down and thrown away each year.”
We’re still waiting to hear what particular festivities will be in store at participating merchants. We’ll keep you posted as we hear more.
Can’t make it to Holiday Magic? Celebrate the holidays in Lower Queen Anne on Friday, December 10 from 4 to 7 p.m. at the Roast Toasty Holiday Event in Counterbalance Park.
Update 9:30 p.m.: Check out the list of participating merchants, and the holiday festivities they’ll be hosting:
- HomeStreet Bank: Free photos with Santa from 4 to 7 p.m., plus holiday treats
- Twirl Cafe: Cookie decorating and a “Lyle the Crocodile” activity based on the Seattle Children’s Theatre production at Twirl Cafe (with paid admission)
- Queen Anne Baptist Church: Free crafts and snacks at Queen Anne Baptist church from 3 to 5 p.m.
- Bethany Presbyterian Church: Tree lighting at 6 p.m., followed by crafts and snacks in the main hall
- Chocolopolis: Cheese, crackers & chocolate along with samples of drinking chocolate and raffles to visit the Chocolate Surplus Room
- Queen Anne Dispatch: Elves with treats and discounts
- Once Upon A Time: Christmas carols and snacks
- Metropolitan Market: Delicious treats for all
- Eat Local: Tasty holiday treats
- My Dressing Room Consignment: 10% off all holiday jewelry, gift with purchase and book signing
- Robert Samuel Salon: 25% off all Aveda products, wine and hors d’oeuvres
- Smiles by Smita Orthodontics: Complimentary treats and a kids’ art project
- Video Isle: A free drawing for video rentals
- Communique: A free drawing for a nutcracker of your choice
- Starbucks: Warm drinks and an art activity for children
- Wink Cupcakes: Children can decorate a free holiday cookie
- Paragon: Happy hour specials
- Emerald City Smoothie: Free smoothies
- Queen Anne Books: Discounts all day, author signing, holiday treats
- Sully’s: Happy hour specials
- Emmer & Rye Restaurant: Happy hour specials
- Betty Restaurant: Happy hour specials
- Homegrown (new shop at corner of QA Ave. and Boston St.): Treats and coloring activity for kids all day
- Queen Anne Books: Discounts all day, author signing, treats
- Queen Anne Frame: Refreshments, open house featuring stocking stuffers, fun jewelry, unique ornaments, photo frames & delightful gifts
- Skookum Clothing: Queen Anne jewelry artist, Joanna Morgan, will offer a trunk show from 4 - 8pm with refreshments
- Blue Highway Games: Roll a dice and get 1-20% off purchase
- Key Bank on Upper Queen Anne: Free hot chocolate and candy canes
- Prorobics: Cookies, candy canes, hot cocoa, and hot apple cider
- Five Spot Cafe: Free hot cider or hot chocolate and coffee cake
- Zaw Pizza: For every $50 in gift cards you buy, receive an additional $10 gift card for free. Free samples of their handmade chocolate chip and double chocolate cookies
- Mimisan & Laurie Swanson Massage: Free 5 min. chair massages at Mimisan from 3 to 7 p.m.
- Enza’s Restaurant: Complimentary glass of wine with purchase of a dinner entree
- Portage Restaurant: Spiked hot cider for only $3
- Tenoch Mexican Grill: Happy hour specials
- Four Winds: 15% off total purchase, including great gifts and stocking stuffers
- Marquise Fine Jewelry: Complimentary wine and treats - come see their selection of beautiful jewelry
- Queen Anne Real Estate: Create a snowflake to put in the window with your $1 donation to the Queen Anne Helpline
- Vitality Medispa and Wellness Center: Offering $99 hydrafacials and peels
Tags: events, festival, Greater Queen Anne Chamber of Commerce, Holiday Magic, Roasty Toasty Holiday Event, Upper Queen Anne
November 29th, 2010 by Thea
Seattle historic steamship, the Virginia V, will be hosting three holiday cruises in December, of which a portion of each will support Seattle-based non-profit organization Forgotten Children’s Fund.
Aboard the 125-foot Virginia V, passengers may enjoy the sights and sounds of the holidays from the water, including the annual Christmas Ships Festival, and help to spread the holiday spirit to those less fortunate.
Started by a letter in 1976 written to Santa Claus from a child who missed out on Christmas, the Forgotten Children’s Fund is an organization that steps in to help those families who have fallen on hard times and receive little or no aid from other organizations. Families are referred by schools, churches, police agencies, and others. More than 1000 volunteers receive letters from families and then deliver upwards of 20,000 toys, books, clothing, blankets and other necessities at the holidays.
“We’re thrilled to receive support from the Virginia V,” volunteer Gordon Fouts, who has been with the organization for 35 years, said in a statement. “The Forgotten Children’s Fund is a wonderful opportunity to enjoy the season in a unique way while helping families who aren’t receiving other types of aid. Through generous donations from community groups like Virginia V, we’re already buying new toys, bicycles, winter coats and food that our Santa Claus and Elf volunteers will distribute at Christmas.”
These three holiday cruises will take place on December 2, 18 and 23, and will depart from South Lake Union Park, 860 Terry Avenue North, aboard the Virginia V. Details and ticket information can be found here.
Tags: charity, Christmas Ships Festival, cruises, events, Forgotten Children's Fund, holidays, Virginia V
November 29th, 2010 by Marina Gordon
If you’ve driven over the Aurora Bridge lately, you’ve noticed the posts for the long-planned suicide fence rising from the west side of bridge.
WSDOT Aurora Bridge Fence Mock-Up. Photo courtesy of WSDOT.
The Washington State Department of Transportation sent out some information recently on the status of the project:
Yes, those are fence posts sprouting up on the west side of the bridge. Crews begin installing the posts on the night Monday, Nov. 8, and are getting 20 to 30 done each night. So far they’ve installed about a third of the 684 posts that will make up the fence. If you’ve been looking closely as the fence posts go up, you might have a few questions. And we have the answers:
Q. Why is the first fence post at N. 34th Street in Fremont? Is that where the fence begins?
A. No, the fence will begin just north of N. 36th Street right above the Fremont Troll.
Q. But the posts don’t begin until N. 36th Street. Are you sure the fence goes all the way to the Troll?
A. Yes, the posts all look the same, but they differ in how they connect to the bridge. Six different ways, in fact, and there are five different types of posts. These post-to-bridge connections depend in part on whether the post is attached to the steel middle section or the concrete sections at the north and south ends. It turns out that the fence manufacturer completed the posts that connect to the steel sections first and so the contractor is installing them first. The posts in the concrete sections on the west side of the bridge will go up in the next week or two.
Q. Why are there gaps between some of the posts?
A. The gaps indicate locations where we must complete repairs before installing posts. As you may remember, crews discovered corrosion in 23 beams about three months ago. We determined the beams would need to be strengthened before we attached the fence posts at those locations and added this work to the construction contract. We completed part of the repair and are waiting for a manufacturer to build and deliver the steel braces that will reinforce the beams.
Q. When will the fence be done?
A. We had hoped to have the fence done by the end of the year, but the added repair work has taken longer than we anticipated. It also appears that panel installation may take more time as well. These two factors will delay completion by about a month, into early 2011.
Tags: Aurora Bridge, suicide fence, update, WSDOT
November 28th, 2010 by Thea
You know the saying ‘it takes a village to raise a child’? While for Kathleen Cifu and her neighbors, the same is true of their cat Stormy.
Up until Thanksgiving Day, Stormy has lived in an apartment building between 13th and 14th Avenues W, near W Barrett, as the communal pet of the building. According to Kathleen, a family that moved out of a house across the street three years ago left Stormy behind, and since then “he hasn’t been interested in being anyone’s personal pet.”
“He will saunter into our apartments, but refuses to be stuck indoors, so a small group of us came up with a plan. He lives in a rather elaborate set-up under an eave off the back of my apartment building, which includes a box with a blanket that gets changed once a week, heat lamp, and a waterproof cover in the winter months and a shade screen for the summer. Even though he wishes to remain outdoors, he still loves affection and greets me in the same spot just about every day when I come home,” Kathleen wrote.
On Thursday morning one of Kathleen’s neighbors informed her that Stormy has been taken during the night, most likely by someone who didn’t realize that he was being cared for.
“We are very worried about his safety as he is not an inside cat and refuses to be. We all take care of him and make sure he is safe and warm,” Kathleen wrote. “We provide, food, water, shelter, and heat. We let him into the walk way leading to our doors for a time to warm him up as well. Again, he refuses to be an indoor cat and prefers to live outside.”
“At some point last night someone must have thought he was not taken care of and he was alone because my neighbor woke this morning to find his box, his food/water bowls, his blankets, and the cat himself were all gone. I assure you the cat has been very well cared for and he means the world to all of us. We would like to put out the word for his safe and speedy return. I can provide proof that he lived here as he was featured in the faculty/staff newsletter at SPU.”
Kathleen and her neighbors hope that whoever took Stormy will contact them immediately. Kathleen can be reached at email@example.com.
“We are very worried about Stormy and hold no grudges against who took him as we believe they were just acting out of compassion,” she wrote. “We simply would like them to know he was cared for and we hope he returns.”
Tags: Kathleen Cifu, lost cat, Queen Anne, SPU, Stormy
November 28th, 2010 by Thea
The Seattle Marathon is coming to town Sunday, starting at 5th Ave and Harrison Street and ending at the Memorial Stadium at Seattle Center. For this reason, many street closure and traffic will increase between 6:30am and 3:00pm.
There will also be periodic usage of the PA system on 5th Avenue near Mercer between 6:30am and 10:30am. Chances are you won’t hear that, but, just in case…
You can check out the full race course here or the affected street map here.
If you’re going to be heading downtown today, allot some extra transportation time as routes and roads will be affected.
And if you’re running the marathon, keep us posted on your times. Let’s find out who’s the fastest Queen Anne runner!
Tags: events, Seattle Center, Seattle Marathon, street closures, traffic
November 27th, 2010 by Thea
Queen Anne resident Nancy Bostdorff and her daughter, Lisa McKibbin, have just lost a beloved friend—their dog Sammy. While walking Sammy along Queen Anne Ave N on Thanksgiving Day, he was tragically electrocuted. The unpredictable accident upset his family, and inspired them to help inform residents in the hopes of preventing other animals from being killed in the same way.
“He was walking along QA Ave, near Bricco, my daughter stepped aside to let another dog pass, and moved onto the electric plate near a lamp post. He started screaming and went into convulsions, and died. We took him to the emergency hospital, where they gave him CPR for 30 minutes, to no avail. Seattle PD cordoned off the street, and Seattle City Light cut power to the block to investigate. I just don’t want anything to happen to another dog,” Nancy Bostdorff wrote. “It is so painful.”
“The metal lamp posts may be leaking electricity, or there could be faulty wiring in the power plate that is not visible to walkers. I witnessed my dog being electrocuted, needless to say, it was excruciatingly painful for him and for me to watch. He died instantly. When I stuck my hand in his mouth I felt a shock from the electric waves emanating from his mouth. My poor baby!” Lisa wrote.
According to Lisa, electrical leakages on city streets are more common of an occurrence than most people realize.
“My mom and I would just like to spread the word out there, bring awareness to people to be extremely cautious of the possibility that the metal lamp posts on the Ave (or anywhere for that matter) could be leaking electricity, as well as steel plates on the sidewalk possibly having faulty wiring underneath the surface. We just don’t want to see any more victims, adult, child, or dog of this terrible hazard. This is a horrible horrible tragedy and should not happen to anyone else and their dogs,” she said.
Nancy and Lisa shared their story with Dr. Spencer at the Queen Anne Animal Clinic, who they say is planning to hold a meeting with fellow vets to discuss this deadly hazard. The family also filed a police incident report, which Lisa says they will be following up on this week.
“The police and Seattle City Light had shut down the power on the block and were checking the area,” she wrote. “We hope to find out if there was faulty wiring, leaking electricity, etc., next week.”
In the meantime, Nancy and Lisa offer a couple of resources on electrical leakages, termed “stray voltage”, which are unfortunately often only discovered after a pet has been lost. Read more about how to prevent your dog from becoming a victim of electrical shock on the street, and how to protect pedestrian, children and pets from such accidents.
Lisa is also starting a blog on Sammy’s behalf. “I want to cover the prevention of electrocution and dogs. I am learning not many people are aware of this, back east it has happened quite a bit, perhaps because they get much worse weather than we do, but lately we’ve been hit hard by Mother Nature,” she wrote. “Maybe together we can spread the word and save lives.” You can visit Lisa’s blog here.
Update: Seattle City Light has responded to the story here.
Tags: electrical leakages, electrocution, Lisa McKibbin, Nancy Bostdorff, pets, Queen Anne Ave., Sammy, Seattle City Light, SPD, stray voltage
November 25th, 2010 by Thea
Update: 9:15 a.m.: Snow plows are still traveling Queen Anne hill, de-icing roads for the holiday.
Happy Thanksgiving Queen Anne! I have some exciting turkey day news to report: Late last night, while sleepily putting the finishing touches on my pumpkin pie, I heard a strange noise coming from the street. At first I thought another car had attempted to drive up Queen Anne Avenue, despite the ice, but I was pleasantly surprised to find a large SDOT snow plow backing up the Counterbalance.
And by 8 a.m. this morning, the Counterbalance was relatively clear of the icy mess that has made it so dangerous to drive on these last few days (though there are still a few stranded cars that haven’t yet been retrieved).
For those of us who thought we might just be stuck on the hill for Thanksgiving, it’s a tiny miracle, courtesy of the folks over at SDOT!
In other Thanksgiving Day news, there has already been a little snow more snow in Queen Anne today. But the 30 degree temperature is expected to get as high as 40, and bring with it some rain.
If you’re busing to your Thanksgiving meals today, Metro is running on a Sunday schedule on snow routes today, and reduced weekday service tomorrow.
Happy Thanksgiving! I’m thankful for snow plows. Let us know what you’re thankful for in the comments below.
Tags: ice, Queen Anne Avenue, SDOT, Snow, Thanksgiving, The Counterbalance
November 24th, 2010 by Thea
Due to cold temperatures yesterday and overnight, much of the ice packed onto the slopes of Queen Anne has not yet had a chance to melt.
Intersection of Queen Anne Ave N and Roy St at around 8 a.m. Wednesday.
While many of the main roads in and around the neighborhood have thawed, the Counterbalance remains closed to traffic, with many cars still stuck in the ice.
With a record-breaking low temperature of 14 degrees at Sea-Tac overnight, the forecast for today calls for highs in the upper 20s to low 30s. Here are some quick notes on what this means for Queen Anne:
- Seattle Schools are closed again today. No school and no activities.
- No residential garbage, yard waste or recycling pick-ups Wednesday, November 24. If today is your collection day, you can put double the trash out next week.
- Early this morning the University of Washington decided to cancel all classes. Essential services remain open.
- Libraries will be open from noon to 5 p.m. today.
- Metro Transit is once again running on snow routes—Queen Anne-ers take note that while many buses may not be going up and down the hill, Metro does have a few snow shuttles in place to tackle the ice. Details here.
Here are updates from the Seattle Department of Transportation:
SDOT continues working to prevent freezing on snow routes:
- Currently the City has 17 trucks with salt spreaders and two flusher trucks deployed.
- Snow routes are in good condition.
- There was no significant re-freezing of cleared roadways during the past 24 hours.
- There are no significant problems on the snow route network.
- The Alaskan Way Viaduct and the West Seattle High Rise Bridge are bare and dry.
- Focus is on reopening closed roads. The Seattle Police Department and SDOT are working to review roads currently closed and will update the list online.
- The City will continue the same level of deployed vehicles for the morning commute; focus will be on efforts to prevent re-freezing, address trouble spots on Level 3 routes, and bring more roads off the closed list.
- Because of the possibility of precipitation today leading to the formation of black ice tonight, some roads will remain closed.
- 24 hour shifts will continue through Thursday, November 25.
Update 9:30 a.m.: Here are some more pictures of the snowy chaos, many which were submitted by neighbors around Queen Anne!
Looking toward Ballard & Fremont from the north slope of Queen Anne. 11.23.2010. Photo courtesy of Bruce Swee.
Looking east toward the Aurora Bridge. 11.23.2010. Photo courtesy of Bruce Swee.
Snow covered bushes. Photo courtesy of Florence Ondré.
Snow covered roses. Photo courtesy of Florence Ondré.
Snow angel. Photo courtesy of Florence Ondré.
Space Needle in the snow. Photo coutesy of Florence Ondré.
Snow lady enjoying her morning coffee at the corner of Queen Anne Ave N & Aloha.
Tow truck struggles to haul away one of the stranded cars on the Counterbalance.
Kids enjoy the day off from school, sledding down the Counterbalance on metal cookie sheets.
Remnants of a stranded car on the Counterbalance.
One of many cars crunched on the Counterbalance.
Stranded on the curb at Queen Anne Ave N and Prospect.
Sledding down the Counterbalance. 11.23.2010.
Climbing the Counterbalance. 11.23.2010.
Sledding on the ice, and pavement. 11.23.2010.
Four-car pile-up on Queen Anne Ave N and Ward. 11.23.2010.
Car stuck at the corner of Queen Anne Ave N & Aloha.
Sledding for two down the Counterbalance.
Sledding down the Counterbalance. 11.23.2010.
Intersection of Queen Anne Ave N and Mercer St. 11.23.2010.
The line at Caffe Ladro at the base of the Counterbalance. 11.23.2010.
Ice on the Counterbalance. 11.23.2010.
Walking the pup up the Counterbalance. 11.23.2010.
Queen Anne Ave N & Aloha, Monday night. Photo courtesy of David Engelstein.
Corner of W Comstock and 6th. Photo courtesy of Florence Ondré.
Snow closure. Photo courtesy of Mary Farmer.
Trekking the Counterbalance Monday night. Photo courtesy of Mary Farmer.
Sledding down the Counterbalance on Monday night. Photo courtesy of Mary Farmer.
The Counterbalance Monday night. Photo courtesy of Mary Farmer.
Queen Anne Ave & Roy St. 11.24.2010.
Tags: Queen Anne Ave., Snow, The Counterbalance, traffic
November 23rd, 2010 by Thea
While only a few inches of snow fell on Queen Anne yesterday, it was enough to cover the Counterbalance, and many of the neighborhood’s other steep streets, in ice, and virtually prevent cars from going up and down the hill. Many of those that attempted to traverse the ice, turned the slopes into an icy, slippery bumper car arena (make sure to watch the videos).
This car was one of four in a five-car pile-up left overnight at Queen Anne Ave N and Ward St after sliding and crashing together late Monday night.
Today Queen Anne-ers wasted no time enjoying the ice before it melts off later today and tomorrow. Many neighbors have spent last night and today sledding down the hill, while weaving around the abandoned cars strewn across the road.
Sledders attempt to salvage the last of the ice on Queen Anne Ave N, swerving around the remaining cars that got stuck in the slippery mess Monday night.
As of 2 p.m. the Counterbalance was still closed to through traffic, however a few gutsy drivers have managed to move their cars off the hill by sliding down slowly and carefully.
And one tow truck managed to pick up one of the four cars that were still crunched together from the collision late last night (video here).
We’ll be posting a gallery of more Queen Anne snow fun (and chaos) pictures shortly. Have a pic or video you’d like to submit? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, or post the link below.
Tags: chaos, ice, pictures, Queen Anne Ave., Snow