Photos of Robin Williams in Ballard

Update: Following up on several tips, I grabbed the camera like a Ballard paparazzi and discovered Robin Williams and a film crew shooting along 34th Ave. near 65th Street. In fact, I nearly ran into Williams when I first arrived.

He had just finished up one scene when this dog decided to jump up on him.

Then he grabbed a french fry from these guys and headed back to his trailer.

A little later, he emerged with his game face on for the next scene.

He sat inside this old car on a trailer, rigged with multiple cameras. The weather, appropriately Seattle. That’s about the time the executive producer asked me (nicely) to put away the camera or leave.

Also on set, Daryl Sabara, who plays Williams’ son.

Film crews also shot out front of a house on 64th Street. Trailers lined 34th Ave for two blocks. Neighbors walked by and observed all the action.

These enterprising neighbor kids were selling snacks and drinks for the crew.

Williams is in his 14th day of a 25 day shoot in Seattle for the upcoming movie, The World’s Greatest Dad. Crews have been in Wallingford until today, when they moved to Sunset Hill for a single day of shooting — the first extended shoot outdoors. We’re told tomorrow they’re headed to Green Lake, and then later to the Alexis Hotel. (All photos copyright My Ballard.)

Hate crime at Fremont mini mart

Earlier this month, a man dressed in camouflage walked into M&S Grocery and Deli, called the clerk a terrorist and proceeded to hit him over the head with a can of beer, police say. The judge released him on his own recognizance, and he has since skipped his arraignment. Now there’s a warrant out for his arrest. The clerk, meanwhile, has moved to California after he saw the man two days after the assault a block away from the store. Prosecutors say this is the first case this year of a hate crime involving someone of Middle Eastern decent.

One woman’s effort to recycle a house

Now that the city owns the plot of land formerly owned by Love Israel on 9th Ave. — now Ballard’s newest park — Margaret Todd wants to save the house on the property. But saving it isn’t cheap. Moving costs are estimated at $45,000, and that doesn’t count a new foundation. “The house can only really be moved 10 blocks to a mile,” Todd told the Ballard News Tribune. “After that the cost to have the house moved would not be worth it.” So Todd is looking for an affordable plot of land nearby, which as Ballard residents know, is a tall order even in today’s softening economy.

New boutique moving into Ben & Jerry’s spot

A new boutique called Asher Anson is moving into the empty space on Market St. near Ballard Ave. left by the departing Ben & Jerry’s. “Asher Anson provides well-constructed, premium men’s and women’s clothing,” explains their just-launched website. “(We’re) very much looking forward to our opening in August (no solid date yet) and sharing our brands with you!”

Bicyclist sues city over Ballard Bridge accident

Last summer Terry McMacken was riding across the Ballard Bridge next to that low concrete wall when he was thrown into traffic and struck by a car. He lost his arm in the accident, and now he’s suing the city of Seattle, reports the Seattle PI. McMacken’s attorney says the city had received prior complaints that the Ballard Bridge guardrail is too low to protect cyclists. The city has not yet responded to the suit in court. (Thanks Nina for the link!)

Behind the scenes at Ballard’s best coffee

We’re talking about Ballard’s own Coffee Equipment Company, maker of the Clover coffeemaker, which was purchased by Starbucks earlier this year. Wired just did an in-depth profile of the company, and there are some interesting details. While Starbucks will help maintain the 250 or so Clovers already sold, it’s refusing to sell any more to independent coffeehouses. Stumptown Coffee out of Portland was so upset with the Starbucks acquisition, it sold its Clovers on the spot. Starbucks also pulled the plug on CloverNet, an online database that tracks sales, maintenance and brewing preferences for Clover owners. Meanwhile, Starbucks is aiming to roll out 80 Clovers in “upscale” markets across the country.

Mystery of Green Lake spikes solved

When word broke of sharpened metal spikes being found in Green Lake, a Seattle Parks Department spokeswoman speculated someone maliciously put them there to “hurt people.” A Seattle Times editorial called the perpetrator a “sick puppy.” Now the mystery is solved. And the sick puppy responsible for placing them there? The Parks Department. D’oh!

It turns out the spikes used to have a hook on the end that corroded off. They were placed in the pond in the 1980s to hold down black plastic to control milfoil, an aquatic weed that was taking over the lake.

Drugs on the streets of Ballard

Writes bscowler today in the My Ballard forum:

“As a six year Ballard resident it’s disheartening to see blatant drug deals going down in broad daylight in front of my apartment building. I live on 17th Ave south of Market Street, and over the past two years I’ve witnessed countless drug transactions occuring on and around the streets where I live. I’ve called the police on several occasions, but by the time they arrive the dealer and customers are long gone. I’ve even taken to writing down the license plate numbers of the cars involved and submitting them to the narcotics unit of the SPD, but all they can do is add the information to their database. Has anyone else noticed an increase in drug dealing in their neighborhoods since Ballard has become the Friday and Saturday night hot-spot?”