White Center Jubilee Days: Street fair and carnival all weekend!

July 18th, 2015 at 7:53 am Posted in Fun, White Center Jubilee Days, White Center news | Comments Off on White Center Jubilee Days: Street fair and carnival all weekend!

The big festival weekend is here and that means it’s street fair time for White Center Jubilee Days – 17th SW south of Roxbury – while the carnival continues at Steve Cox Memorial Park. See the stage schedules on the official website; it’s not just music – for example, the Highline Bears plan a demonstration on the main stage at 2:30 pm.

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‘Pianos in the Parks’ to include Steve Cox Memorial Park again this year

July 16th, 2015 at 1:35 pm Posted in Arts, Music, Steve Cox Memorial Park, White Center news | Comments Off on ‘Pianos in the Parks’ to include Steve Cox Memorial Park again this year

(ADDED: Piano you’ll see at Steve Cox Park; photo courtesy PitP)

Just announced: Where you’ll find “Pianos in the Parks” around the region this summer. Twenty-two of the “one-of-a-kind, artist-designed upright and grand pianos” are on their way to parks in Western Washington, including one at White Center’s Steve Cox Memorial Park. Once the pianos get to their destinations (starting later today), they’re available for free public use through August 16th; then they’ll be auctioned. Bidding will start soon at pianosintheparks.com; that’s also where you will be able to enter a contest by making a video of yourself and/or your band performing with one of the pianos – if you make one with the Steve Cox Park piano, let us know!

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UPDATE: Man dies after shooting; deputies searching for killer

July 14th, 2015 at 3:56 am Posted in Crime, King County Sheriff's Office, White Center news | 5 Comments »

(King County Sheriff’s Office photo)

3:56 AM: A 51-year-old man was shot and killed early this morning near 14th SW/SW 106th, according to the King County Sheriff’s Office. “It appears he tried to help another person being robbed and was shot,” KCSO’s media-relations Deputy Stan Seo tweeted. The only description so far: Black male, ski mask, dark hoodie and shorts. Deputies have been searching with K-9 assistance but haven’t found anyone so far. If you have any information, please call 911.

9:08 AM: KCSO now says the victim was 51 years old, so we’ve corrected his age above.

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White Center Jubilee Days 2015: Fireworks, carnival on Wednesday

July 12th, 2015 at 7:27 pm Posted in White Center Jubilee Days, White Center news | 2 Comments »

This year’s Jubilee Days festival is about to gear up, with big events Wednesday – the fireworks show at dusk at Steve Cox Memorial Park, where you’ll also find the five-day carnival starting the same day. Also from the WCJD website – the main-stage schedule, and the family-stage schedule for the festival’s two biggest days, next Saturday and Sunday (July 18-19).

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Seattle Police arrest alleged ‘prolific car thief’ in White Center

July 10th, 2015 at 4:56 pm Posted in Crime, White Center news | Comments Off on Seattle Police arrest alleged ‘prolific car thief’ in White Center

If you saw Seattle Police in the area Thursday, might have been related to this case that just appeared on their SPD Blotter website:

Southwest Precinct officers arrested a prolific auto thief and recovered a bag full of suspected stolen credit cards Thursday after staking out a stolen car in White Center.

Police had been scouring the neighborhood for the man, who was wanted on warrants for theft and auto theft, when they found one of his stolen cars parked near SW 104th St and 1st Ave SW.

Officers staked out the stolen Honda and waited for the suspect, who soon pulled up in a white Mitsubishi, driven by a female accomplice.

The pair of suspects seemed to take notice of an officer working the stakeout, who drove away from the scene.

The suspects sped up to catch up to the officer’s car, but quickly circled back to the stolen car.

When the male suspect climbed into the stolen Honda, he quickly discovered officers had already disabled the vehicle.

Police moved in and arrested the suspect and the woman driving the Mitsubishi, and found a purse filled with suspected stolen credit and gift cards, drug paraphernalia and tools frequently used by burglars inside the car.

Officers booked the man into the King County Jail for auto theft and booked the woman for reckless driving and possession of stolen property.

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VIDEO: County’s cannabis crackdown – sheriff, prosecuting attorney tell medical-marijuana dispensaries they’re ‘illegal’

July 8th, 2015 at 11:53 am Posted in Businesses, King County, King County Sheriff's Office, White Center news | 8 Comments »


If you hit “play” on the :15 Instagram clip above, you’ll get an idea of how contentious this morning’s cannabis-crackdown announcement in downtown White Center was. While there was a full turnout of regional media, there also was a notable turnout of people from medical-marijuana establishments, furious about what’s happening.

Speaking outside the King County Sheriff’s Office downtown WC storefront were Prosecuting Attorney Dan Satterberg, Sheriff John Urquhart, and Russ Hauge from (what’s about to be renamed) the state Liquor and Cannabis Board. Satterberg wrapped it up with a message to the marijuana establishments: “You might not consider yourself illegal – we do.” A copy was provided of the letter circulated to them (starting at least two days ago, according to what sources told us). While the officials gave conflicting answers as to what kind of “timeline” they expected for stores to shut down, the letter stated flatly in the sixth paragraph, “You will need to cease operations now, even if you plan on applying in the future for a state license …” and when asked, there was one suggestion that if stores aren’t closed within a month, they would “get a visit.” (added) Here’s part of Satterberg’s opening statement:

A printed list also provided to the news media included six White Center/Top Hat establishments:

Herbal Market, 10422 16th SW
White Center Alternative Care, 9839 17th SW
Pacific Coast Natural Medicine, 9817 16th SW
WCC, 9809 16th SW
Northwest Cannabis Market, 9640 16th SW
Herban Legends, 9619 16th SW
WPMC, 11009 1st Ave. S.

After the letter was circulated earlier this week, Herban Legends had this sign on its door:

The county officials referred to the newly opened Bud Nation, a state-licensed recreational-marijuana store in downtown White Center, as an example of what they support, and what they feel is threatened by the unlicensed establishments. They also made it clear that the state was there “in support” of what was their initiative. They pointed out they are doing this under civil measures, not criminal, but also reiterated that they are serious.

The medical-marijuana advocates, meantime, continued to protest that they are offering medicine and that they believe this is just a ploy by the state because of competition – what they make MMJ available for is lower than the state-set prices.

More to come…

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Cannabis crackdown: Sheriff, Prosecuting Attorney coming to White Center tomorrow for media briefing on ‘closing down unlicensed marijuana businesses’

July 7th, 2015 at 4:34 pm Posted in King County Sheriff's Office, White Center news | 1 Comment »

Tomorrow morning at the White Center storefront of the King County Sheriff’s Office, County Prosecuting Attorney Dan Satterberg and King County Sheriff John Urquhart plan to brief the media on what their advisory describes as an “effort aimed at closing down unlicensed marijuana businesses operating in unincorporated King County,” which includes WC. Sources tell us they’ve already been circulating letters to some White Center marijuana outlets. The proliferation of medical-marijuana enterprises in North Highline, particularly White Center, has led to some concern, especially for the North Highline Unincorporated Area Council, where it’s been a frequent topic at meetings, including one we covered in April. The crackdown follows passage of a new state law requiring medical marijuana to be handled as a sideline in state-licensed recreational-marijuana shops. (White Center’s first recreational-marijuana shop opened recently.) We’ll cover tomorrow’s briefing and will publish an update here.

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You can help! ‘Work together to make North Shorewood Park awesome’

July 3rd, 2015 at 8:34 pm Posted in How to Help, Parks, White Center news | Comments Off on You can help! ‘Work together to make North Shorewood Park awesome’

(April 2015 photo by Gill: Volunteer working at North Shorewood Park)
North Shorewood Park needs you! One week from tomorrow, spend part of your day there with your fellow community members – 9 am-1 pm on Saturday, July 11th, to be specific. The invitation comes from Lina @ King County Parks:

Join King County Parks staff and community members at this wonderful White Center park as we work together to make North Shorewood Park awesome. Our goal is to make the park a healthier and safer place for people and animals so that our community can enjoy this lovely forest. We will be digging out aggressive plants that are doing damage to the health of the park. As part of the event, we will also walk the trails as a group and I will share information about the great native plants that are growing in the park.

Young people under the age of 16 must be accompanied by an adult. Any minors attending the event without a parent or legal guardian must also bring a signed youth waiver to event in order to participate. Please contact Lina Rose, lina.rose@kingcounty.gov, 206.491.5014, for a copy of the waiver, more information, and to sign up.

North Shorewood Park is at 10061 21st SW.

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Mark your calendar! White Center Kiwanis Pancake Breakfast on July 19th

June 30th, 2015 at 11:07 pm Posted in Holy Family, How to Help, White Center Kiwanis Club, White Center news | 2 Comments »

From Audrey Zemke:

White Center Kiwanis is holding its pancake breakfast on Sunday, July 19th from 7:30 am to 1:00 pm at Holy Family School (9615 20th Ave SW). Tickets are available at the door for $7.00 per person or $5.00 for tickets purchased before July 19 or at the door with a coupon. Kids 5 and under eat free.

Purchase tickets at the breakfast to win one of a dozen baskets. The pancake breakfast will be a collection point for diapers for WestSide Baby as well. White Center Kiwanis helps kids and youth in the White Center area by supporting Key Clubs at New Start and Evergreen High Schools, Highline Exchange Club, Salvation Army, Southwest Boys & Girls Club, Westside Baby and White Center Food Bank. If you wish to purchase table sponsorships or advertise on the placemat, please contact Bill Tracy at 248-2441 or billnancytracy@aol.com.

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Mom, daughter hurt in White Center crash

June 29th, 2015 at 4:24 pm Posted in White Center news | Comments Off on Mom, daughter hurt in White Center crash

A mother and her 9-year-old daughter are recovering from what investigators say were minor injuries suffered when a car hit them at 15th/Roxbury this afternoon. King County Sheriff’s Office is investigating the incident but we’re told that the two were not seriously hurt and that’s why the crash scene cleared relatively quickly; the driver did stay at the scene to talk with deputies.

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FOLLOWUP: State has the authority to call for an emergency fireworks ban, but doesn’t think it’s needed

June 26th, 2015 at 2:27 pm Posted in safety, White Center news | 2 Comments »

Following up on our Wednesday report about a petition drive in which community advocates from here and West Hill asked for an emergency ban on fireworks: County leaders told us they don’t have the authority to do anything immediate, but that the state does. We finally got a chance today to inquire with the State Fire Marshal’s Office. Deputy Fire Marshal Lysandra Davis replied, saying that only the governor has that authority, but that calling for one isn’t warranted right now. Here’s the entire reply:

Our office has received numerous inquiries on this matter, and we value and appreciate each and every one.

Because Washington is a Home Rule State, legislative authority to limit or prohibit the sale, purchase, possession, and/or use of consumer fireworks is only granted to city, municipal, and county governments. However, any ordinance adopted by a county or city has an effective date no sooner than one year after its adoption, per RCW 70.77.250 (4). Because State Fireworks Law does not provide the SFMO or any other local jurisdiction/agency the authority to temporarily ban
fireworks, even on an emergency basis, it is unlawful to do so.

The only person with the authority to issue a temporary ban on fireworks sales/usage is Governor Jay Inslee. This would be done through a State of Emergency Proclamation which normally prohibits activities that the Governor reasonably believes should be prohibited to help preserve and maintain life, health, property or public peace. In the past, when emergency proclamations have been issued during heavy wildland fires (usually occurring mid-July to August), fireworks usage and sales were already prohibited by State Fireworks Law.

The current burn ban that is in effect only applies to state forests, state parks and forestlands under Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) fire protection, including Department of Fish and Wildlife lands; it does not include cities, municipalities and/or counties. This ban prohibits outdoor burning and fireworks and incendiary devices (which are never legal on DNR-protected forestlands).

While these drought conditions we are facing may be unprecedented, there is not a current statewide fire emergency that would warrant the Governor to declare a State ban on fireworks.

What I can assure you of is that the State Fire Marshal’s Office is committed to promoting fire safety and injury prevention year round with our Celebrate Safely and Legally campaign — emphasizing “personal responsibility,” especially during these extremely dry weather conditions.

So it looks like fireworks will be on sale, as planned, in unincorporated King County starting this Sunday, where the law allows their use 9 am-midnight on July 4th.

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Petition drive launched to ban fireworks in unincorporated King County this year

June 24th, 2015 at 4:00 pm Posted in safety, White Center news | 3 Comments »

(A version of this is also published on our partner site West Seattle Blog)

Community leaders from the unincorporated areas of North Highline and West Hill have just launched a petition drive asking county leaders for an emergency fireworks ban because of drought conditions and exceptionally dry weather/vegetation – the petition is on this Change.org page. The petition is addressed to the County Executive and County Fire Marshal. Right now, fireworks sales in the unincorporated area are scheduled to start at noon on Sunday.

But is that even possible? After publishing this on our partner site West Seattle Blog a little earlier, we spoke with Jim Chan in the King County Permitting and Environmental Review department, which oversees the Fire Marshal’s Office. He says the same thing that WSB commenter Karen reported being told by the County Executive’s Office – that the county has no authority for an emergency ban; any ban couldn’t take effect for a year. Chan says a few Washington counties’ laws enable such a ban – Douglas and San Juan Counties, he mentioned – but for King County, that sort of authority has just never come up. We asked if the state would have authority, then, to take an action that could enable an immediate emergency local ban, and he said yes. So we’ll be checking next with the state Fire Marshal’s Office. Meantime, we were forwarded a news release that the county Fire Marshal’s Office had been planning to issue, saying only this:

King County fire agencies are urging citizens to attend one of the many professional public fireworks displays during the Fourth of July weekend. Prolonged dry weather and below average spring rainfall have cured grass and vegetation growth, creating high fire danger nearly six weeks earlier than normal. Last year in King County fire agencies responded to nearly 200 fire calls with 82 of them related to fireworks, as reported in the 2014 Washington State Fire Marshal report.

While it is not advisable to light fireworks, follow the three B’s – Be Prepared, Be Safe, and Be Responsible. Retail fireworks go on sale June 28 through July 4 and in those communities that allow fireworks, discharge is limited to July 4 from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. only.

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Stage 1 burn ban ordered for unincorporated King County as of Monday

June 19th, 2015 at 4:39 pm Posted in safety, White Center news | 1 Comment »

Just announced:

Due to unseasonably dry conditions, little expected rainfall in the near future, and a low snowpack, the King County Fire Marshal is issuing a fire safety burn ban in unincorporated areas of the county effective June 22.

Sky lanterns are not allowed under the burn ban.

This is a Phase 1 burn ban and applies to all outdoor burning except for small recreational fires in established fire pits at approved campgrounds or on private property with the owner’s permission. Recreational fires must:

*Be built in a metal or concrete fire pit, such as those typically found in designated campgrounds; and not be used as debris disposal

*Grow no larger than three feet in diameter

*Be located in a clear spot free from any vegetation for at least 10 feet in a horizontal direction, including at least 25 feet away from any structure and allow 20 foot vertical clearance from overhanging branches

*Be attended at all times by an alert individual with equipment capable of extinguishing the fire.

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Happy 7th anniversary, Full Tilt Ice Cream!

June 19th, 2015 at 10:34 am Posted in Full Tilt Ice Cream, White Center news | Comments Off on Happy 7th anniversary, Full Tilt Ice Cream!

Tomorrow night in downtown White Center, you’re invited to join Full Tilt Ice Cream at its flagship WC location for a free all-ages show celebrating FT’s 7th anniversary. Info’s on this Facebook event page, which announces:

Performances by:

The wonderful and fantastic Kimya Dawson!
Folkish duo, Bird Teeth
And the lovely Apis Malifera!

Live music, ice cream, beer and pinball!

If you’re new in town … FT is at 9629 16th SW.

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Why three White Center-area schools were in lockdown

June 12th, 2015 at 1:17 pm Posted in King County Sheriff's Office, White Center news | Comments Off on Why three White Center-area schools were in lockdown

1:17 PM: We’ve been getting texts asking why Cascade Middle School, Evergreen Campus, and Mount View Elementary were in what the texters describe as “lockdown.” According to King County Sheriff spokesperson Sgt. Stanley Seo, deputies are searching for a student who was reported to have been seen with a “weapon.” They believe they know who they are looking for, and the search continues; the Guardian One helicopter has been in the area too. Important to stress, no injuries have been reported. And as we finish writing this, Highline Public Schools tweeted that the lockdowns have been lifted.

1:32 PM: New information from Sgt. Seo: The person who was seen may NOT have been a student. No one’s in custody so far. The earlier lockdowns were just precautionary.

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What the King County Sheriff’s Office helicopter has been doing over Top Hat

June 11th, 2015 at 1:29 pm Posted in Helicopter, top hat, White Center news | 1 Comment »

The King County Sheriff’s Office has just explained what the Guardian One helicopter has been doing over Top Hat. From Twitter: Deputies were sent to a report of “a possible stolen car with person inside, S 100 ST and 2nd Ave S, Deputies arrived and the suspect fled … Deputies have set a perimeter, Helicopter on scene to assist, K9 tracking, stay inside to help the K9 track. … The car is a 1993, red, Acura Integra, 3 door, and is a confirmed stolen car. … Keep an eye out for a white male in his 20’s, in a t-shirt and jeans; this is the suspect who was in the stolen car and ran off.” We’ll update with any new information.

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NEXT FRIDAY: After-school fun at Mount View Elementary carnival

June 6th, 2015 at 10:02 pm Posted in Fun, Schools, White Center news | Comments Off on NEXT FRIDAY: After-school fun at Mount View Elementary carnival

You’re invited! Just in from Mount View Elementary:

Mount View Elementary will host a carnival for the school on Friday, June 12th to celebrate the academic success of the students, to raise money for our sister-school in Honduras, and to support the school’s PTA. There will be face painting, bouncy houses, games, the circus, and MANY awesome raffle prizes! Please come and celebrate TWO fantastic causes!

When: Friday, June 12th, 4-6 pm

Location: Mount View Elementary, 10811 12th Ave SW

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VIDEO: What was said at this morning’s brief ‘briefing’ on possible Seattle annexation of White Center/North Highline

June 3rd, 2015 at 12:17 pm Posted in Annexation, White Center news | Comments Off on VIDEO: What was said at this morning’s brief ‘briefing’ on possible Seattle annexation of White Center/North Highline

The briefing at this morning’s meeting of the Seattle City Council Education and Governance Committee was indeed brief; when the video is available via Seattle Channel‘s website, we’ll post it here so you can see for yourself. (ADDED EARLY THURSDAY: Here it is.)

The topline is that Seattle will go ahead and file the next round of paperwork with the Boundary Review Board by Friday, to continue to preserve its options for getting the state sales tax credit, but it was reiterated multiple times that this is just procedural so far and that there are many more points along the way where they would be able to say “no, we’re not proceeding.” While the filing will trigger a six-month period with the BRB, it was also said by city staffer Kenny Pittman – long the point person on this process – that extensions would be possible and almost certainly sought. And it was reiterated multiple times that the city would not annex without a vote of the people in the North Highline area. One more note: They’re still hoping that, during this Legislative special session in Olympia, the tax credit will be beefed up, to $8 million a year for a finite period, rather than the currently on-the-books $5 million.

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White Center businesses: Caffe Delia closing for a few days; Bud Nation now open

June 2nd, 2015 at 8:24 pm Posted in Businesses, White Center news | Comments Off on White Center businesses: Caffe Delia closing for a few days; Bud Nation now open

Two downtown White Center biznotes, both from tweets by Caffe Delia – and the first is about their own business:

Hey everybody, we are going to be closed Wednesday June 3 through Saturday June 6. Our cousin Andrea has passed away and we’re going back east to be with our family. We hope to be back open Sunday.

They also sent word that the recreational-marijuana store we mentioned here recently is now open:

We reported here a month ago that Bud Nation’s license had been approved for 9640 16th SW.

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The Big Read: Big program coming up this fall in White Center, SeaTac, and Tukwila

June 2nd, 2015 at 4:17 pm Posted in Libraries, White Center news | Comments Off on The Big Read: Big program coming up this fall in White Center, SeaTac, and Tukwila

Announced today by the county library system:

The King County Library System (KCLS) will host a community-wide Big Read program this fall to explore and discuss the immigrant experience in the communities of SeaTac, Tukwila, and White Center.

With more than 60% of the population being persons of color, 30% foreign born, 40% speaking a language other than English at home, and more than 70 languages represented in the area’s school districts, SeaTac, Tukwila, and White Center are the most diverse in King County.

Immigrants and refugees have contributed to King County’s sweeping demographic change in the last 20 years. In these neighborhoods, the increase in immigrant-owned businesses, religious centers, and organizations addressing new residents’ unique needs, has generated cultural division and tension as well as great opportunities for building cultural awareness and new social competencies.

Presented by KCLS, the Refugee Women’s Alliance (ReWA), Highline Public Schools, Highline College, King County Housing Authority, and the White Center Community Development Association/White Center Promise, The Big Read will engage residents in conversations about their experiences, and give the entire community a welcoming and safe environment to explore issues that are close to home in these areas, including gentrification and racial tension.

The program will begin this fall, offering free copies of the novel The Beautiful Things That Heaven Bears to encourage all residents to read the book and join in the conversation. Author Dinaw Mengestu drew on his own experience having fled Ethiopia to The Other Washington: D.C.

The community read and related activities will begin a cross-cultural dialogue about how we are different, but more importantly, our common experiences and desires for a thriving community.

The Big Read is a program of the National Endowment for the Arts, designed to revitalize the role of reading in American culture by exposing citizens to great works of literature and encouraging them to read for pleasure and enrichment. King County’s southwest corridor is one of 75 communities nationwide participating in The Big Read from September 2015-June 2016. The national Big Read is managed by Arts Midwest.

For more information, please contact Jo Anderson Cavinta jacavinta@kcls.org 425-369-3454. This fall, there will be a full calendar of events for The Big Read in SeaTac, Tukwila, and White Center available online at kcls.org.

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