Tag Archives: othello

Beacon Bits: Police, playground, and planting

Click this to see a larger version of the event poster.
This Saturday you can meet your local police officers, tour the precinct building, and enjoy music, dancing, and free food at this year’s Picnic at the Precinct. All South Precinct residents are invited to this free community event, which will be held from 1:00 – 4:00 pm in the South Precinct parking lot, 3001 South Myrtle Street.

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Nearby in the South Beacon Hill area, Seattle Parks and Recreation will host a meeting for the Othello Playground Safety and Lighting Improvement project on Monday, September 20 from 7:00 – 8:30 pm at the Van Asselt Community Center, 2820 South Myrtle Street.

At this meeting, the design team will present schematic designs for the project, based on information gathered at the first meeting in May and at the August Othello Park International Music and Art Festival.

For more information, please contact Rick Nishi, Parks and Green Spaces Levy Manager at 206-733-9319 or at rick.nishi@seattle.gov, or visit the project website.

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The Beacon Hill branch of the Seattle Public Library will host a special story time for children on Saturday, October 2 at 3:30 pm featuring an actor in costume as the television character Kai-lan from Ni Hao, Kai-lan. The story time is free and registration is not required. Kai-lan will read from one of her Mandarin Chinese/English bilingual books, and giveaways and photo opportunities will be available. The story time is presented in partnership with the Seattle Theatre Group in promotion of the upcoming stage show Storytime Live! at the Paramount Theatre.

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Neighbor Julie writes, “This very friendly cat appeared at our door last night (9/8/10). It is a small, black and white, with an interesting tail. We live in the 19th Ave S. and Horton neighborhood. Please call Julie at 206-999-9231 to claim it.”

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You still have time to submit an application with the Seattle Releaf “Trees for Neighborhoods” program. The application deadline has been extended to October 4 for the program, in which participants receive free trees, training, and some supplies to get started caring for their trees. Trees may be planted along the street or in your yard. To find out more and to get your application, check out the website.

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Another way to help green-up your neighborhood is coming on October 10, with a Maple School Natural Area Invasive Species Removal and Native Planting work party. The work party is from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm, followed by a social party until 6:00 pm. All you need to bring is yourself—refreshments, tools, and gloves will be provided.

The Maple School Natural Area is located at 20th Avenue South and South Lucile Street, near Cleveland High School. You can find out more about the event and RSVP at the website.

The Stranger weighs in on SE Seattle appeals

Organizers set up tables at the Festival Street opening last December in front of El Centro's empty south lot. Photo by Jason.
Cienna Madrid at The Stranger has written a story about the recent appeals filed against the North Beacon Hill, Othello, and North Rainier (Mount Baker) neighborhood plan updates. The article discusses El Centro de la Raza’s plans to develop the land just south of their building, plans which are—for now—on hold. State law allows neighborhood plans to be amended only once a year. Whether the appeals are upheld or not won’t be determined until it is too late to meet the deadline for this year, so the appeals are automatically forcing a one-year delay to any plan changes.

Madrid interviewed Estela Ortega from El Centro, Bill LaBorde of Transportation Choices Coalition, City Councilmember Sally Clark and David Goldberg of the Department of Planning and Development, and also attempted to speak with North Beacon appellant Frederica Merrell and the appellants from the other Southeast Seattle neighborhoods—for the most part, however, the petitioners aren’t talking. (The exception is Jenna Walden of the Othello group, who suggests that the reason for her group’s appeal is that it is a protest against marginalization of neighborhood groups.)

The resulting article pulls no punches; it concludes, “…Merrell and her cohorts appear to be more concerned with winning than pursuing the best interests of their neighborhoods and the city.”

Responses from The Stranger‘s readers on the website have been mixed.

The article is here. Seattle Transit Blog also posted about the Stranger article.

(ed. note—Frederica Merrell occasionally contributes opinion articles to the Beacon Hill Blog.)

North Beacon plan update appeal is one of three

Frederica Merrell’s appeal filed recently against the Determination of Nonsignificance (DNS) of the North Beacon Hill neighborhood plan update (also discussed here and here) is not unique. The Beacon Hill Blog has been made aware that Merrell’s appeal is one of three nearly-identical appeals filed on January 29 by residents in each of the Southeast Seattle neighborhoods that recently went through a neighborhood plan update: Othello, North Rainier (Mount Baker), and North Beacon Hill. (Read the Othello appeal here, the North Rainier appeal here, and the North Beacon appeal here.) The appeals are nearly word-for-word identical, with only a few minor differences (such as the sections describing each distinct neighborhood and the appellants’ connection with them).

The Othello appeal was filed by Ron Momoda, Patricia Paschal, and Jenna Walden. The North Rainier appeal was filed by Pat Murakami and Barbara Marino. Most are well-known neighborhood activists in Southeast Seattle, and several were active last year in speaking out against House Bill 1490 and Senate Bill 5687, which would have created incentives and requirements for transit-oriented development and density near light rail stations.

The three appeals all request the same thing: that DPD’s Determination of Non-Significance (DNS) for each neighborhood’s plan update be vacated, and that DPD be required to take other actions including additional community notification, review, and validation, and environmental impact analyses.

The North Beacon appeal has been the subject of some heated controversy in the comments sections of the BHB posts linked above, with some commenters suggesting that the appeals are specifically intended to cause the entire update process to be scrapped, or that they were filed in order to block any upzoning or increased density, while some others say the update plan was flawed from the start, and that appeals such as this are a necessary and important part of the process of making this update work for North Beacon Hill.

El Centro de la Raza, who have had plans to develop their property just north of Lander Street, have filed their own motion to intervene and dismiss Merrell’s appeal.

The recently published Neighborhood Plan updates (the North Beacon one is here) were developed through a process that began in Fall 2008 and continued through 2009 with community meetings and open houses in March, May, and September.

(ed. note—Frederica Merrell occasionally contributes opinion articles to the Beacon Hill Blog.)

Parkland shooting suspect reported captured, dead in Othello area

According to scanner reports, the suspect in the Lakewood police shootings, Maurice Clemmons, was captured earlier this morning in the 4400 block of South Kenyon Street, and KIRO 7, KIRO 97.3, CBS Radio News, and several other local media outlets have just now reported that he is dead.

The location on South Kenyon is east of Beacon Hill, in the Brighton/Othello neighborhood on the other side of Martin Luther King Way South. On Monday, police swarmed North Beacon Hill on 17th Avenue, and near the Jungle and Jose Rizal Bridge in pursuit of Clemmons.

On Twitter, @rahnerseatimes (Mark Rahner of the Seattle Times) reports that there was a shooting at the South Kenyon location at around 2:39 am, and that “Clemmons (is) said to have challenged police who approached him and was shot.”

Movement was seen inside the house near which Clemmons was captured, and SWAT teams have moved in and a perimeter has been set up around the house.

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Beacon Bits: Vote Now edition

No more in-person voting at places like El Centro -- now you need to mail your ballot in. Photo by Wendi in 2008.
No more in-person voting at places like El Centro -- now you need to mail your ballot in. Photo by Wendi in 2008.
It’s election day! If you haven’t voted yet, you can vote today by getting your ballot in the mail before today’s pickup, or dropping it off by 8:00 pm at one of the six Neighborhood Service Centers (Ballard, Central, Delridge, Lake City, Southeast, and University) that serve as drop-off locations for election ballots. Additionally, the NSCs will be hosting open houses for any and all residents to drop in, enjoy refreshments, receive giveaways, and learn more about the Department of Neighborhoods, City services, and opportunities for civic engagement. In our neck of the woods, the place to be is the Southeast Neighborhood Service Center, 3815 South Othello Street #105, from 3:00 – 7:00 pm. The Center is just a couple of blocks west of Othello Station, past the Safeway.

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In the Slog, Charles Mudede has some uncomplimentary things to say about the Beacon Hill Library and its public art, but the commenters vehemently disagree.

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Speaking of public art on the Hill, the Times has a feature about artist Dan Corson, who created the “space forms” in the Beacon Hill light rail station. (Thanks for the tip, Joel!)

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Saturday on the Hill: McGinn Town Hall, Mid-Autumn Festival of Lights

Mayoral candidate Mike McGinn is hosting a town hall meeting tomorrow (Saturday, October 3) on South Beacon Hill. The location is the Van Asselt Community Center, 2821 South Myrtle Street. The town hall meeting starts at 3:00 pm.

Quite nearby is another event, the Mid-Autumn Festival of Lights (Trung Thu) at John C. Little Park, 6961 37th Avenue South. This event is free, and includes moon cakes, storytelling, lanterns, face painting, and more celebratory fun. It’s from 6:00-9:00 pm, so you can easily attend both events.

Free festival in Othello Park on Sunday features performers, food, and… goats

One event near Beacon Hill this weekend that we didn’t mention the other day: The Othello Park International Festival, from 12:00 noon until 6:00 pm this Sunday in Othello Park, 4351 South Othello Street. Performers at the festival will include Audio Couture, Adefua, the Zydeco Locals, Mariachi Colima, steppers and lion dancers; there will also be food vendors, goats, face painting, and container garden giveaways. Admission is free. The easiest way to get there: take Link to Othello Station, and walk 1/2 block east to Othello Park.

Going places on light rail: Othello station

(As the big opening day for light rail is this Saturday, we want to post a bit about the stations that aren’t on Beacon Hill. Much of the coverage of the rail line focuses on using it for commuting to and from work, and many of us will be doing that. But even more than getting to work, Link is going to be useful for visiting places throughout Downtown and Southeast Seattle without a car. With this in mind, we’ve created a few posts about some of the station areas.)

The pictogram representing the Othello station is a stag. (Courtesy of Sound Transit.)
The pictogram representing the Othello station is a stag. (Courtesy of Sound Transit.)
The Othello Station is located in a neighborhood on the verge of great change. Though the area currently has a few empty lots and what the Seattle Times recently called “a weary row of shops,” the station is already spurring new transit-oriented development in the area: a 420,000 square foot mixed-use project is breaking ground right next to the new light rail station. The New Holly redevelopment of the former Holly Park public housing project is just up the hill, and the similar Othello Station planned community is next door. The station area bears the weight of heavy expectations, perhaps more than any of the other station locations.

A Link train arrives at Othello Station. Photo by Oran Viriyincy.
A Link train arriving at Othello Station, last fall. Photo by Oran Viriyincy.
Attractions and destinations nearby include the Chief Sealth Trail, which also comes close to the Rainier Beach Station, Othello Playground, the New Holly library, and the Bumblebee Boxing Club. And while certainly nothing to write home about, this stop brings the nearest Safeway to any of the stations although it’s also quite possibly not going to be a Safeway for terribly much longer. The Rainier Valley Post reports today that the store has a $3 million makeover coming in January.

The public art around the station includes Roger Shimomura’s Rainier Valley Haiku, an exploration of Asian identity and culture in 21st Century America; Brian Goldbloom’s Stormwater Project, granite catchbasins inspired by Japanese stonework; and Augusta Asberry’s Come Dance With Me, in which eight stylized women dance along the edge of MLK in colorful dress.

Othello neighbors enjoyed the MLK Safety Street Fair last year, but this Saturdays celebration promises to be even more festive. Photo by Oran Viriyincy.
Othello neighbors enjoyed the MLK Safety Street Fair last year, but this Saturday's celebration promises to be even more festive. Photo by Oran Viriyincy.
“Downtown” Othello has a fair number of restaurants to choose from, mostly ethnic food, including the much-loved Tacos El Asadero bus on MLK between South Othello Street and Renton Avenue South. Olympic Express has lamb curry, gyros, and halal meats, along with Asian fast food such as pho and teriyaki. Rose Petals serves up southern food: greens, ox tails, cornbread, and fried chicken, “like fife and drum music for my stomach,” according to one Yelp reviewer.

The Othello Station area will be particularly festive on Link’s opening day, July 18, when a free community festival to celebrate light rail’s arrival will be held at MLK and South Othello Street. There will be food, art, commemorative souvenirs, “Undriver’s Licenses” for everyone, and entertainment including Massive Monkees, the Lion dancers, Big World Breaks, Ruby Shuz, and more.

The Come Dance With Me sculpture by Augusta Asberry dances in front of a forlorn retail building, since torn down to be replaced by a mixed-use development. Photo by Matthew Rutledge.
The "Come Dance With Me" women by Augusta Asberry danced in front of a forlorn retail building last winter, since torn down to be replaced by a mixed-use development. Photo by Matthew Rutledge.

Updated with new information about the Othello Safeway remodel.

Fights and shooting Saturday night in NewHolly and Brighton

The SPDBlotter reports:

On December 6th at approximately 11:30 P.M., multiple units from the South Precinct responded to a large disturbance involving over 150 juveniles at a event in the 7000 Block of 32 Avenue South. … A short time later, officers responded to Harborview Medical Center where a gunshot victim had been taken. The victim stated he had been shot in the 4600 block of S. Othello and gave a suspect vehicle description of a white American car. Officers responded to 4600 S. Othello and located shell casings as well as damage to a residence and the victim’s vehicle.

It’s believed the two incidents are related. The Seattle Times has a bit more.

A neighbor’s plea: Can you help Noemi’s kids?

Amber Campbell at the Rainier Valley Post sent this email to us today:

“Most of you already know that earlier this week, my neighbor Noemi Lopez – the mother of three beautiful children, 15-year old Karina, 13-year old Alandra and 6-year old Alex – was killed by her ex-husband. Angel has confessed to the murder and remains on the run. The children are staying with relatives but they have been unable to return to their home for clothes, school supplies, personal belongings, etc. Can you help them?

“I am personally keeping in touch with the family on a regular basis to keep tabs on their needs and deliver the outpouring of sentiments, blessings and donations. So far neighbors have contributed money, clothing and a tree to plant in Noemi’s memory.

“At this time we are focused on helping the children with clothing, school supplies and gifts for the holidays, as well as the crime scene clean-up costs that will range somewhere in the area of $1,000 – $5,000.

“The Rainier Valley Post has established a fund specifically for the Lopez Children and we would all be very grateful for whatever publicity you can offer to generate help for these poor kids during the most horrible time of their lives.

“Please go to www.rainiervalleypost.com for info about how people can give.

Thank you and Happy Holidays.”

Please help if you can. At the Rainier Valley Post site, there is a PayPal button in the upper sidebar, along with an address if you prefer to mail a donation.