Girls basketball summer camp sign-ups

Ballard High School is now taking sign-ups for a girls basketball summer camp for 2nd through 9th graders. “This camp is designed to build fundamentals, decision making, and competitive, confident players,” according to the coach, Sara Wetstone.

From Wetstone:

If you like learning, competing and having fun, this camp is for you! The Ballard players and coaching staff are thrilled to be able to work with you to take your game to the next level. Through drill work, games and team building activities, you will improve all parts of your game in a positive and fun environment.

The camp runs July 23 – 26 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the BHS Gymnasium. The cost is $175 for the whole camp.To sign up for the camp, or to find out more information, click here.

Seattle Tilth seeking hosts for chicken coop and urban farm tour

Local group Seattle Tilth is organizing a Chicken Coop and Urban Farm Tour, and is looking for Ballard residents who have coops or urban farms to be hosts. “If you’ve got an interesting chicken coop, other urban livestock like rabbits or goats, ducks or a great organic garden and you enjoy sharing your experiences with people, we’d love for you to be a part of the tour this year!” writes Liza Burke from Seattle Tilth.

The group is asking interested residents to fill out an application for the tour, which is 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on July 14. They are asking for a few photos to go along with the application, which is due on Monday, June 4.

Shilshole Marina to celebrate Open Boat Weekend and National Marina Day

This Saturday and Sunday, June 2 and 3, Shilshole Marina will be celebrating Open Boat Weekend and National Marina Day. The event is also a benefit for the Leukemia Cup Regatta, which is happening the following weekend, June 9.

The events happen from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on both days. From the flyer:

Sail For a Cure Boat Rides: One hour sailboat rides on Puget Sound every half hour all weekend. 30-45 foot yachts, courtesy of Windworks Sailing Center and Seattle Sailing Club. First come, first served. Suggested donation is $10. For more information, please call Bob Ross at 206.286.1004.

Open Houses: Take a tour of the live-aboard boats at Shilshole Bay Marina and learn about the fun lifestyles of the Washington liveaboard community and visit Corinthian Yacht Club for refreshment and an overview of their junior sailing program.

Swap Meet: Bring your nautical gear to swap or come in search of bargains. Pre-registration is highly recommended for swappers due to space constrains. Donations are collected on-site. $5 late fee may apply for showing up onsite without registration. Public swappers: $10 donation per vehicle Business swappers: $50 donation To register, contact Brianna Rockenstire with The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society at 206. 628.0777 ext. 117 or

Boat Show: Over 50 boats will be on display and open for inspection, including new and used sailboats, trawlers, and yachts. Brokers, sailing club and charter boat representatives will also be on hand from Seattle Yachts, Sail Northwest, Seattle Sailing Club, and Windworks Sailing Center.

Donate and get a dog: Enjoy a hot dog, a bag of chips and a soft drink while you search for bargains at the swap meet or wait for your boat ride. Donations accepted for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.

Coast Guard Auxiliary Vessel Checks: Get your boat checked by the Coast Guard Auxiliary for any safety issues prior to summer boating

Junior Sailing Lesson: Corinthian Yacht Club of Seattle will have instructors and Opti sailboats on site for 1 hour intro to sailing lessons for kids from 6 – 14. Introduce your children to the water the right way with professional US Sailing certified instructors. Suggested donation is $5.00. Afterwards stop by the CYC Clubhouse to see what they have to offer. For more information call 206. 789. 1919

Ballard siphon project update: expect road closure and heavy traffic at south site

The project to replace the 77-year-old sewer line that runs beneath Ballard is moving forward with planned road closures this summer. King County says crews have finished digging the shaft at the south project site on West Commodore Way and 24th Ave W, and plan to pour a “concrete plug” at the bottom of the shaft. On Friday, June 1, they say to expect heavy truck traffic at the site from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m.

King County also says that starting June 2, West Commodore Way will be closed between 23rd Ave W. and 24th Ave W. for approximately four months. They say traffic will be detoured around the road closure via 23rd Ave W., West Jameson St. and 24th Ave W. The closures are necessary to connect existing sewer pipes to the new siphon pipeline, says King County.

For more information about the Ballad siphon project, click here.

Two shootings in Seattle, some schools on lockdown

Update, 6:30 p.m.: The suspect in today’s shootings is alive and receiving treatment at Harborview Medical Center, according to the SPD Blotter. From the Blotter:

It appears that about 30 minutes after the shooting at the cafe, the suspect in the cafe shooting fled to First Hill, where he fatally shot a woman in a parking lot, and stole her SUV.

The suspect then drove the SUV to West Seattle, where he ditched the vehicle, leaving a gun in the car.
After officers found the SUV near Delridge Way SW and SW Dakota Street, SPD flooded the area with uniformed and undercover officers.

Just after 4pm, a plainclothes officer spotted the suspect near 36th Avenue and SW Morgan Street, and called for backup. As uniformed officers approached the suspect, he knelt down to the ground, and shot himself. Medics rushed the man to Harborview for treatment.

Based on evidence recovered during today’s investigations, SPD believes a lone suspect is responsible the murders in Roosevelt and First Hill. Still, neighbors should expect to see a heightened police presence as detectives work to confirm links between the two tragic incidents.

Update, 5 p.m.: Seattle Police are now saying the two shootings are connected. From SPD’s Twitter feed: “Detectives now believe that the 5800 Roosevelt murders and the 8th and Seneca murder are in fact connected, based upon evidence.” And, “The man detectives believe to be the lone suspect in four murders in two locations shot himself in the head when approached by Seattle PD.”

Update, 4:15 p.m.: Seattle Police are reporting that the North Seattle suspect has been found in West Seattle, where he evidently shot himself. However, they say this is only preliminary information.

Update, 2:15 p.m.: One Twoadditional shooting victim has been pronounced dead at Harborview Medical Center, bringing the total dead to three four (two men, two women) from the Cafe Racer shooting. Police are still searching for both suspects in the University District and Delridge neighborhoods. Seattle Public Schools say they are, “taking direction from SPD on whether students will be let out on time.”

Update, 1:20 p.m.: The SPD says there is a, “heavy police presence in the University District, with K9, SWAT, Homicide detectives, crime scene investigators, and patrol officers all in the area working on the case and searching for the suspect. As a precaution, area residents should keep their doors and windows locked, and to call police if you find any indications someone has tried to break in to your home.” (From the SPD Blotter)

Earlier, 1:00 p.m.: This morning, two deadly and unrelated shootings happened in our city, one downtown and one in the University District. The shooting in the U-District involved a man who shot five people, killing two, at Cafe Racer. Nearby schools (Roosevelt, Eckstein, and Greenlake) were on lockdown as a result. The shooter is still at large.

From our news partners, The Seattle Times:

Seattle police say the shooting happened at Cafe Racer Espresso in the 5800 block of Roosevelt Way Northeast, near the intersection with Northeast Ravenna Boulevard.

Two men are confirmed dead, and one person has life-threatening injuries, police said. Two others also suffered gunshot wounds. One victim is a woman.

…The suspect in the Cafe Racer shooting was described by police as a white man, 30-40 years old, 6-feet-1, with a medium build. He has light brown curly hair, a goatee or beard and was wearing a white and plaid shirt.

The man was last seen running north from the scene. Police urged residents in the area to remain inside.

The shooting downtown happened in front of Town Hall. The Seattle Police Department (SPD) says it was an apparent carjacking. From the Times:

The woman and a man were seen arguing in the parking lot at Eighth and Seneca earlier in the morning, police said. The man shot the woman around 11:30 a.m. and fled in a black Mercedes SUV. It’s unknown at this point whether the vehicle belonged to him.

The SUV later was found in the 4100 block of Delridge Way, but authorities are still searching for the suspect. TV news footage showed what appeared to be a black handgun in the front seat.

The woman in the carjacking incident has died, and the suspect is still at large, according to the SPD. We’ll continue to update with any new information.

King County redistricting affects some Ballard residents

Over the past couple weeks, King County has been sending out new voter registration cards. If you live in east Ballard, your legislative district may have changed. Based on findings from the new census, King County adjusted the boundaries of numerous districts. The county is required by law to realign boundaries every ten years to reflect changes in population distribution, according to the King County Districting Committee.

King County adjusted many congressional, legislative, and county council boundaries. Ballard is still in King County Council District 4 the boundary for which has expanded east to I-5 and north to N. 145th St., represented by Councilmember Larry Phillips. Ballard is also still in Congressional District 7, which has been expanded north to include Shoreline and represented by Jim McDermott. However, Ballard’s legislative district boundaries have changed, as the boundaries for the 36th, 43rd and 46th districts were adjusted.

Here is a map of the new legislative boundaries:

2012 Legislative district boundary map, click here for the full map from King County Elections

Here is a map of the previous legislative boundaries since 2002:

2002 Legislative district boundary map, click here for the full map from King County Elections

To learn more about redistricting in King County, click here.

Utne Reader founder to speak at Nordic Heritage Museum next week

On Tuesday, June 5, Utne Reader’s founder Eric Utne will be at the Nordic Heritage Museum to discuss his book “Brenda, My Darling,” at 7 p.m.

From the museum:

Fridtjof Nansen, Norway’s greatest explorer, humanitarian and winner of the 1922 Nobel Peace Prize, met the writer Brenda Ueland in New York City in 1929. He was 67 and she was 37. They had a brief love affair and a year long correspondence until his death. Brenda, My Darling presents Nansen’s letters to Ueland, (hers to him are lost), and a sampling of Ueland’s published work and unpublished diaries. Available for the first time, his letters are some of the most passionate, candid and eloquent in the English language. Brenda, My Darling offers profound insight into the lives of two extraordinary individuals.

Utne founded the Utne Reader in 1984, and he and edited and published the magazine for 15 years. He is a member of the executive committee of the Nobel Peace Prize Forum and of the advisory boards of Ecotrust and the World Future Council. He is also the step-grandson of Brenda Ueland, “who called him her grandson and said they were ‘closer than kin.'”

Aurora Bridge closed tonight for earthquake safety project

The Aurora Bridge will be closed tonight while crews work to raise the bridge a 3/4 of an inch. The work is part of a project to help the 80-year-old bridge better withstand an earthquake. The bridge will be closed from midnight tonight until 5 a.m. tomorrow (Wednesday, May 30) morning. Northbound drivers will be detoured off SR 99 at Denny Way and onto Dexter Avenue and/or I-5. Southbound drivers will be detoured off at 39th and onto Fremont Avenue.

The retrofitting has been underway since April 2011, as crews have been under the bridge reinforcing the steel and concrete on the north and south ends. The project includes, “adding steel to the skeleton, thickening concrete girders and covering existing columns with fiber designed for shaking,” according to the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT).


Residents on the north face of Queen Anne may hear the noisy work between midnight and 5 a.m.  Free earplugs are available by contacting Jamie Holter at 206-440-4698 or

Queen Anne drivers should plan for closures on 6th Avenue North between Raye and Halladay streets. Crews will close one lane Monday through Friday between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. until the end of August. Flaggers at both ends of the closure will allow local access.

During the daytime closure, crews will work on 6th Avenue North underneath the Aurora Avenue Bridge. They are building a skeletal system for the extra steel that will be attached to the existing girders.

Free Ballard Day

Today is the 105th anniversary of Ballard’s incorporation into the city of Seattle, and Ballardites are still anti-celebrating. The city was officially annexed on May 29, 1907, when the rumor of a dead horse in the water supply persuaded our ‘hood to join Seattle.

Today, Ballard’s Hattie’s Hat will be anti-celebrating, handing out free stickers to every disgruntled Ballardite who comes in the door.

Photo courtesy Hattie’s Hat