Local organizes fundraiser to support Vanuatu cyclone victims


Returned Peace Corps Volunteer Kara Dobsa is organizing a fundraiser to support the Oxfam Cyclone relief efforts in Vanuatu after the devastation caused by Cyclone Pam.

The event will be hosted by the Kangaroo and Kiwi Pub (2023 NW Market St) this Saturday, April 11, from 6 p.m. – 10 p.m.

Ballard local Dobsa volunteered in Vanuatu from 2010-2012 and wants to reach out to the community for their support.

“My former Peace Corps home was recently devastated by a cyclone which has resulted in major losses of homes, water sources and food sources. There is a critical need for emergency relief funds in Vanuatu and I am hoping to raise awareness and funds,” says Dobsa.

Oxfam is currently on the ground in Vanuatu, helping victims in the wake of this disaster by providing clean water, hygiene kits, access to sanitary facilities and shelter through evacuation centers for over 166,000 affected people.

The United Nations anticipates the need for emergency relief in Vanuatu to last until at least mid-June.

Locals can support the effort during Saturday’s event by donating a suggested $10 at the door, all of which will go solely towards the relief campaign.

Click here to learn more about the event.

Photo courtesy of Kara Dobsa.

Ballard Locks to celebrate 100th anniversary with completion of Master Plan

The Hiram M. Chittenden Locks is moving steadily towards its 100th anniversary on July 4, 2017, with the aim to complete the Locks Master Plan in time for the celebrations.

According to the Army Corps of Engineers, the Locks has experienced a decline in funding over the yeas as the facility has deteriorated and traffic has increased. This decline in funding is due mainly to the fact that the facilities available at the Locks are free to the public including when locals use it for commercial purposes.

“The Locks operational funds are based on commercial tonnage of ship cargo, not actual boat traffic. Since the Locks opened, commercial cargo has declined significantly and is now a small fraction of the annual 50,000+ boats that use the locks,” says Rich Deline from the Army Corps of Engineers.

In terms of tourism, despite the popularity of the Ballard Locks as a destination, the Army Corps of Engineers reports that tourism revenue amounts to less than 60 cents per visitor for the Fish Ladder, English Gardens and Visitor Center combined.

To address these pressing financial needs and in anticipation of the Centennial in 2017, national non-profit Corps of Engineers Foundation in partnership with regional non-profit Discover Your Northwest have teamed up to produce the Locks Master Plan to improve the visitor experience at the Locks with public involvement and funding.

The first step completed in the Locks Master Plan was a Comprehensive Interpretive Design donated by the nationally-renowned Seattle architectural firm, Jones & Jones, in concert with the Corps of Engineers Seattle District.

The Interpretive Design, created by the firm’s well known architect Johnpaul Jones, calls for World-Class Facilities that are set to benefit both the Ballard community and the City of Seattle as a whole.

Progress is currently being made on a number of elements of the Locks Master Plan, including the installation of six portable interpretive touchscreens (pictured below) located around the site.  These touchscreens will provide much needed information about the site as well as solicit public support for restoration.


A state-of-the-art HD projection system was also recently installed in the visitor center theater which now allows the space to be used for special interest programs and video screenings.

Up next to be completed is an upgrade to the fish ladder viewing room (pictured below) which is set to bring it up to modern educational and visitor comfort standards. The upgrade will include improved lighting, acoustics and larger viewing windows along with digital display technologies to better educate the public and help alleviate visitor disappointment when salmon are not visible.


“Stop by the Locks and see what’s happening and how you can help support the Ballard Locks Centennial and Locks Master Plan improvements,” says Deline.

Click here to check out updates as the Master Plan

Photos and images courtesy of the Army Corps of Engineers.

BHS athlete named as one of Western Washington’s top performers

Ballard High School softballer Lauren King has been named as one of last week’s ALL-USA’s Western Washington performers of the week.

Check out the write up on the KING 5 website below:

Wednesday against Holy Names, she pitched four innings, striking out eight. King was also 2-for-2 at the plate with a homer and three RBI.

Friday was more of the same, as she hit two more home runs in the Beavers’ 8-0 win over West Seattle.

Congratulations Lauren!

Local voters set to receive Special Election ballots

King County Elections will be mailing out ballots tomorrow, April 8, to all registered voters in King County for the April 28 Special Election. This special election includes measures from seven jurisdictions on issues such as transportation, school construction, public safety, parks and more.

“Voters will see a single countywide measure on their ballot,” said Sherril Huff, Director of King County Elections. “Voters in six districts will also see measures important to their communities. Read your ballot and weigh in with your vote.”

King County Elections predict a turnout of 33 percent for this election.

All voters will receive a voters’ pamphlet with all measures in this election. Ballots will include only the measures for which a voter is eligible to vote.

Voters should read and follow directions on their ballots, sign the return envelope, and get ballots back before the April 28 election day deadline. Mailed ballots need a first-class stamp. Voters in Ballard can also return their ballots to the drop box at Ballard Library (5614 22nd Ave NW) by 8 p.m. on April 28.

If you are not yet registered and wish to do so you have until April 20 at 4:30 p.m. to register in person at King County Elections offices (500 4th Ave (Room 440) Seattle) to vote in this election.

Voters who don’t receive a ballot by April 15 or who have questions should call King County Elections at 206-296-VOTE (8683).

The week in sports at BHS

The BHS athletes are preparing for another huge week of competition. Head out and support them at their games!

Tuesday, April 7

  • Softball: JV Conference vs. Garfield at Gillman Field #2 – 3:30 p.m.
  • Soccer: Boys C Conference vs. Ingraham High School at NW Athletic Complex – 3:30 p.m.
  • Soccer: Boys Varsity vs. Nathan Hale High School at Interbay – 3:30 p.m.
  • Soccer: Boys JV vs. Nathan Hale High School at Adams #2 – 3:30 p.m.
  • Softball: Varsity Division vs. Seattle Prep at Lower Woodland Park Field 3 – 4 p.m.
  • Lacrosse: Girls JV Conference vs. Puyallup at Ballard High School – 5:30 p.m.

Wednesday, April 8

  • Tennis: Varsity Match vs. Nathan Hale High School at Lower Woodland Tennis Courts – 3:30 p.m.
  • Ultimate: Girls Varsity vs. Garfield High School at Interbay – 3:30 p.m.
  • Baseball: Boys JV vs. Ingraham High School at Ingraham 1 – 3:30 p.m.
  • Tennis: JV Match vs. Nathan Hale High School at Meadowbrook – 3:30 p.m.
  • Soccer: Boys C Team vs. Franklin High School at Garfield High School – 3:30 p.m.
  • Baseball: Boys Varsity vs. Ingraham High School at Whitman Middle School – 3:45 p.m
  • Lacrosse: Boys Varsity vs. Bainbridge Island High School at Ballard High School – 5:30 p.m.

Thursday, April 9

  • Track: Varsity Meet at Southeast Athletic Complex – 2:45 p.m.
  • Soccer: Boys JV vs. Seattle World School at Interbay – 3:30 p.m.
  • Soccer: Boys Varsity vs. Cleveland High School at Van Asselt – 3:30 p.m.
  • Softball: JV Conference vs. Roosevelt at Green Lake Park Field 2 – 4 p.m.
  • Softball: Varsity Conference vs. Nathan Hale High School at Meadowbrook – 4 p.m.

Friday, April 10

  • Baseball: Boys C Conference vs. Nathan Hale High School at Loyal Heights – 3:30 p.m.
  • Baseball: Boys JV vs. Ingraham High School at Whitman Middle School – 3:30 p.m.
  • Baseball: Boys Varsity vs. Ingraham High School at Ingraham 1 – 4 p.m.
  • Lacrosse: Boys Varsity vs. Stanwood High School at Ballard High School – 7 p.m.

Saturday, April 11

  • Track: Varsity Invitational vs. Lincoln at Lincoln High School (Tacoma) – time TBD
  • Soccer: Boys C Conference vs. Chief Sealth at Southwest Athletic Complex – 10 a.m.

CBRA to host monthly meeting this Thursday

Central Ballard Residents Association (CBRA) will meet this Thursday, April 9, at 7 p.m. at Ballard Swedish Hospital in Conference Room A.

Ballard’s community police officer Michael Cruzan will be in attendance at the meeting to answer questions from locals about the SPD presence in our area.

“We hope the community will come out and welcome him and bring any questions or concerns about police activity in Ballard,” says CBRA’s Membership Coordinator Rebecca Todd.

All locals who are interested are encouraged to attend.

To find out more about CBRA click here to check out their website.

Bergen Place mural set to be restored

The large mural in Bergen Place (pictured below) will be taken down and restored by the end of the month after Olson Real Estate performs some needed work on the wall directly behind where the mural resides.


Victoria from local organization Friends of Bergen Place confirms that the mural will be taken down sometime this week and is set to be reinstalled on better materials and with the same picture by the end of the month.

Members of Friends of Bergen Place are also working to restore the kiosk, wash, sand and paint the area to get the park ready for the May 17th celebrations. New flags will also be hung the week prior to the festivities.

Friends of Bergen Place is still looking for donations from locals to assist in the restoration of the mural. Click here to make a donation.

The My Ballard team will update readers with more information about the date of restoration when it becomes known.

Development Update April 6: A subdivision and a six-story building

One subdivision application, a six-story office building and regeneration of an environmentally critical area make up today’s development update from the City of Seattle’s Department of Planning and Development (DPD) as posted in the Land Use Information Bulletin.


2222 NW 60th St


A Land Use Application has been submitted to subdivide one development site into three unit lots. The construction of residential units is under Project 6430537. This subdivision of property is only for the purpose of allowing sale or lease of the unit lots. Development standards will be applied to the original parcel and not to each of the new unit lots.

1448 NW Market St


A Land Use Application has been submitted to allow an 6-story, 234,706 sq. ft. office building. Parking for 225 vehicles to be provided below grade. Existing structure to be demolished.

Click here to read the previous My Ballard report about the development.


4315 11th Ave NW

Shoreline Substantial Development Application has been approved to grade 430 cubic yards of material (350 cu. yds. cut; 80 cu. yds. fill) in an environmentally critical area and to allow site improvements (elevated walkway, benches and deck/viewing platform, re-vegetation) to 11th Avenue NW street end for public recreation use. (Seattle Department of Transportation).

This decision is appealable to the Washington State Shoreline Hearings Board until at least April 27, 2015.