News for Seattle's Ballard neighborhood and beyond

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SPD officers catch burglar red handed in Ballard

November 17th, 2014 by Danielle Anthony-Goodwin

SPD officers caught burglars red handed in two separate burglaries in the North Seattle area on Saturday night. Check out the details from the SPD blotter below:

In two separate North Seattle burglaries officers arrived at Licton Springs and Ballard homes catching the burglars red handed yesterday evening.

Just before 8 p.m. officers were driving lights and sirens through the Licton Springs neighborhood to a different call when the dispatcher broadcast a homeowner was outside in the front yard fighting with a burglar. The officers, it just so happened, were driving down the block where the incident was unfolding.

Officers arrived at the incident in the 9200 block of Wallingford Ave North and arrested the suspect as the homeowner’s wife was still giving information to the dispatcher.

The North Precinct Anti-Violence Emphasis patrol officers later booked the 34-year-old man into King County Jail on investigation of burglary.

Later, a woman called 911 around 10 PM after she had locked herself and her children inside an upstairs bedroom as her husband confronted an intoxicated burglar inside their Ballard home.

Officers entered the home in the 5900 block of 20th Ave NW and captured the suspect as he charged toward the locked bedroom with the wife and children inside.

Police booked the 23-year-old man into King County Jail on investigation of burglary.

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Ballard Library offers free information sessions about Affordable Health Care Act

November 17th, 2014 by Danielle Anthony-Goodwin

Ballard Library (5614 22nd Ave NW) is offering a free drop-in assistance service for locals who want to find out more about enrolling in health plans that have become available through the implementation of the Affordable Care Act.

As the new open enrollment period begins, the service will be in operation from 3 p.m. – 7 p.m. every Wednesday night from November 19 through February 11 and is available on a first come first served basis.

The Seattle Public Library, Public Health – Seattle & King County and community-based agencies are working together to help locals determine their eligibility for Affordable Care Act programs. Trained staff from community agencies will be available to answer questions and assist with enrolment.

Bring your Social Security number, information about your current income and if applicable your Permanent Resident Card (“green card”) information.

The service is free and requires no reservation. Click here to find out more information.

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Group of employees speak out in support of owners as Paseo files for bankruptcy

November 14th, 2014 by Danielle Anthony-Goodwin

According to an article posted on The Stranger’s website, a group of former Paseo employees have spoken out in support of the owners and the working conditions they faced while employed at, what is now arguably, Seattle’s most popular and controversial sandwich shop.

The My Ballard team reported Paseo’s closure on Tuesday, amid allegations that a law suit filed by four previous employees against the owners was the reason for the shop’s demise. Since Tuesday, local media has exploded with different angles on the Paseo story and the reasons behind the closure that has devastated so many.

The Stranger was contacted by nine former Paseo employees who have “watched in horror as the reputations of the owners and the restaurant itself have been dragged through the mud.” According to the article, the former employees believe that the owners’ decision to close Paseo was definitely connected to the lawsuit.

“This was the best management I’ve ever had in my life,” Camden Nixon, who had worked at Paseo for several years, told The Stranger. “We all really love it here and care about the owners. And we’ve been bummed that we’re not still serving.”

When asked about the four employees that were suing Paseo, the group was quick to tell their side of the story. They referred to the group as “the Family”, said that they “ran the kitchen” and described them as “mean spirited.”

“It took a long time for him (owner, Lorenzo Lorenzo) to feel like he could have people in place where he could lose those people,” former employee Tyler Grantham told The Stranger. “We just wanted to get the other side’s story out.”

In addition to the legal battle, reports indicate that Paseo was definitely in financial trouble. Our news partners at The Seattle Times report that Paseo Carribean Food Inc. filed a voluntary Chapter 7 bankruptcy petition on Wednesday, the day after they officially closed the shop’s doors for good.

According to The Seattle Times, when filing a petition for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, the applicant usually seeks to pay off creditors through the liquidation of property assets.

According to the article, the filing reveals that Paseo Carribean Food Inc. owes $30,425 to a variety of “unsecured creditors,” which reportedly includes several vendors and utilities and 20 workers or former workers. The filing also indicates Paseo property assests, which mostly comprise of restaurant equipment, are valued at close to $82,000. The bankruptcy filing also confirms that Paseo owners have paid over $251,000 over the past three months in payroll, employee taxes and benefits.

In addition to confirming what owners owe, the filing also indicates that Paseo reached over $2 million in sales last year, with $1.7 million to date this year.

The Seattle Times reports that Macrina Bakery of Seattle and Sea Bend Meat Co. of Shoreline are listed as the company’s biggest creditors, who are allegedly owed $10,000 each. However, when officials at both food wholesale companies were contacted by Seattle Times reporters they seemed surprised.

Vice President of Macrina Bakery, Scott France, told The Seattle Times that Macrina supplied hundreds of 5-ounce Guiseppe rolls to Paseo daily and confirmed that the business was never late with payments.

“We’ve had a good relationship with those folks for a long, long time,” France told The Seattle Times.

Similarly, Stan Ciezc, who owns Sea Bend Meat Co., defended Paseo’s owners stating that they have worked with them for over 20 years and that “they are very, very good people.”

The article reports that several government taxing authorities, including the IRS and the state’s revenue, employment security, and labor and industries departments are listed among other creditors in Paseo’s bankruptcy filing.

After the closure was announced and the bankruptcy filing confirmed, a group of Seattle entrepreneurs known as Savvy Orders launched a Kickstarter to buy the business and reinstate it exactly as it was. At this stage the group has raised $31,222.

Although the Kickstarter campaign has gained overwhelming local support, not everyone is convinced, including Stranger reporter Ansel Herz. Herz published an article titles About that “Save Paseo” Kickstarter… this afternoon indicating that many are skeptical and unsupportive of the move.

“As far as I know, from what I’ve heard from everybody, we’re all kind of bothered by it,” former employee Tyler Grantham told Herz. Grantham confirmed that Savvy Orders did not contact the former Paseo employees until after the Kickstarter was up and running. “None of us are interested in what he proposed,” Grantham said.

With so many perspectives and twist and turns it is unclear where the Paseo story will go next, however, it is sure to be closely followed by hundreds of Seattleites.

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What’s on this weekend

November 14th, 2014 by Danielle Anthony-Goodwin

Another weekend is here and brings with it plenty of exciting events. Enjoy it in Ballard!

Friday, November 14

  • Art UP w/ Chattergold Studios Family Potraits Pop Up at Ballard Healing Arts (8314 8th Avenue NW) from 6 p.m. Art UP open house will feature Artwork by Tricia Chatterton-Goldrick who will be on hand to take family photos just in time for your Xmas Cards!
  • Fantastic Friday Fest at Sunset Hill Community Center (3003 Northwest 66th St) from 6:30 p.m. A fun night for the whole family featuring music by local favorites The Washover Fans (with special guests The Purple House), arts and crafts, games, snacks and a raffle for a fabulous prize. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased online.
  • Live music at Conor Byrne Pub (5140 Ballard Ave NW) at 9 p.m.  Featuring Blue Tracks, General Mojo’s Key Project and Jojo Jupiter. Tickets $8. Click here to purchase tickets and for more information.
  • Live Music at Tractor Tavern (5213 Ballard Ave NW) at 9 p.m. Featuring Shook Twins – Folk Pop Sisters From Portland. Tickets $15. Click here to purchase tickets and for more information.

Saturday, November 15

  • Free electronics and Styrofoam Recycling at Our Redeemer’s Lutheran Church Parking Lot (2400 NW 85th St) from 8 a.m. – 2 p.m. In partnership with Total Reclaim, the folks are collecting old electronics and Styrofoam. Recycling is free. Click here to check out the complete list of what is allowed.
  • Reiki 1 Class at Ballard Healing Arts (8314 8th Ave NW) from 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. In First Degree Reiki training you will receive a Reiki attunement that will empower you to practice Reiki. Cost is $185. Click here to find out more.
  • Free SAT Diagnostics Test at Sylvan Learning (2232 Northwest Market Street #8) from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Find out how ready you are for the big test. Please RSVP first though at (206) 297-4595.
  • Speakeasy Bingo Benefit at Ballard Elks Club (6411 Seaview Ave) from 6 p.m. – 11 p.m. The Plus One Foundation is hosting a 1920s themed extravaganza. Tickets are $75 and all proceeds go to the Foundation. Click here to find out more.
  • Live music at Conor Byrne Pub (5140 Ballard Ave NW) at 9 p.m. Double CD release party featuring Gravel Road, and Levi Fuller & The Library! with special guests Wind Burial. Tickets $8. Click here to purchase tickets and for more information.
  • Live Music at Tractor Tavern (5213 Ballard Ave NW) at 8:45 p.m. Featuring Smokey Brights, Ravenna Woods and Kelli Schaefer. Tickets $12. Click here to purchase tickets and for more information.

Sunday, October 16

  • Ballard Farmers Market along Ballard Ave from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. Click here to see this week’s specials.
  • Ballard Youth Basketball Winter Tryouts at Ballard Boys and Girls Club (1767 NW 64th St) from 10 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. Tryouts are open to students in 3rd through 5th grade. Winter teams practice once per week on Saturdays or Sundays; 3 tournaments. Students with all skill levels are encouraged to tryout. Click here to find out more.
  • Ballard Youth Basketball Winter Tryouts at Ballard Boys and Girls Club (1767 NW 64th St) from 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. Tryouts are open to students in 6th through 8th grade. Winter teams practice once per week on Saturdays or Sundays; 3 tournaments. Students with all skill levels are encouraged to tryout. Click here to find out more.
  • Open Mic at Conor Byrne Pub (5140 Ballard Ave NW) at 7:30 p.m. All are welcome. For more information click here.
  • Live Music at Tractor Tavern (5213 Ballard Ave NW) at 7 p.m. Singer/Songwriter – Steve Forbert (Seated show). Tickets $20. Click here to purchase tickets and for more information.

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Speakeasy Bingo set for Saturday in Ballard

November 14th, 2014 by Danielle Anthony-Goodwin

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Seattle non-profit the Plus One Foundation is hosting a Speakeasy Bingo fundraiser this Saturday, November 15, at Ballard Elks Lodge (6411 Seaview Ave). The 1920s themed event is set to kick off at 6 p.m.

The Plus One Foundation, which is 100% coordinated by volunteers, works within the community to mobilize resources and enrich the lives of those affected by neurological conditions and educate the community about related issues.

100% of event proceeds will fund grants for children and adults with neurological disorders who need access to healing activities on their path of rehabilitation. Grants range from yoga classes to build core strength, to Seattle parks swim passes in order to keep muscles strong, to art classes that keep spirits up.

“The Plus One Foundation is dedicated to filling the gap towards recovery for these programs that are often not funded by insurance, but are invaluable in providing quality of life and joy to grantees,” says Plus One Foundation Board Member Tessa Griffin.

Event goes are set for an evening of fun at Speakeasy Bingo which include a photo booth, live auction, and of course bingo! Prizes have been donated by over 40 of Seattle’s premier restaurants, hotela and local businesses valued at up to $500.

All proceeds from the $75 ticket will go towards providing services to those with neurological disease and injury in the community.

Click here to find out more about the event and to purchase a ticket.

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Free electronic recycling event set for Saturday

November 14th, 2014 by Danielle Anthony-Goodwin

Our Redeemer’s Lutheran Church (2400 NW 85th St) is set to host an electronic and Styrofoam recycling event and clothing drive this Saturday, November 15, from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. The event provides an opportunity for Ballardites to clean out their closets and garages and keep unusable items out of the landfill.

Our Redeemer’s is partnering with Total Reclaim and are collecting old electronics, which includes anything with a battery or cord and (almost) anything metal working or not.

Items that will be accepted include computers, monitors, laptops, printers, computer parts, fax machines, scanners, modems, wires, toner cartridges, appliances, washers / dryers, refrigerators, water heaters, CD / DVD / VHS cassette players, speakers, televisions, and car batteries. Click here to check out the complete list of items.

The team will also be collecting clothing and shoes for The Bridge Care Center and Mary’s Place, and are looking especially for seasonal clothing (fall and winter).

The Bridge Care Center is a drop-in center for men and women experiencing homelessness and displacement in the Ballard area. Their work is about acknowledging that every person has value and meaning, and deserves to be treated with dignity. Mary’s Place empowers homeless women and children to reclaim their lives by providing shelter, nourishment, resources, healing and hope in a safe community.

Clean, white Styrofoam will also be collected at the event and taken to Styro Recycle. Please do not bring styrofoam that has been used for food and all tape and labels must be removed. Packing peanuts (in a bag or box with a lid) and clear bubble wrap also accepted. No hot tub covers will be accepted. Small donations to cover the cost of transport will also be gladly accepted.

All recycling services are free of charge. Our Redeemer’s high school youth will also be in attendance to collect donations to fund their service trip to Holden Village this winter.

To find out more information about the event click here.

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Throwback Thursday: Ballard Locks 1913-1918

November 13th, 2014 by Danielle Anthony-Goodwin

The team here at My Ballard realized that we hadn’t dedicated a Throwback Thursday post to one of the most popular neighborhood spots, so we thought today would be the perfect time to take a look back at the early years of the Ballard Locks.

The black and white photo below, taken in 1913, shows the area where construction began for the Ballard Locks. Ground was broken for the Locks in 1911, and the first concrete was poured for the lock chambers in 1913.

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The black and white photo below, taken in 1915, shows the Ballard Locks during the initial stage of construction. For many years there was no easy or cheap way to move logs, coal and other necessary resources from the east side of Lake Washington to Elliot Bay.

Many plans were made but none were successful until the Lake Washington Ship Canal was built between 1911 through 1917.

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The black and white photo below, taken in 1916, shows the Ballard Locks a year later as construction continued.

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The black and white photo below, taken in 1918, features the yacht Carrie as it passes through the Locks after construction was complete.

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Photos and information courtesy of MOHAI.

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Local entrepreneurs launch Kickstarter to re-open Paseo

November 13th, 2014 by Danielle Anthony-Goodwin

Investment group Savvy Orders has launched a Kickstarter campaign in the hope of raising funds within the community to re-open Paseo. The group is hoping to raise $250,000 from the Kickstarter to add to their investment in the business.

“We don’t want to change a thing, except we plan on paying its (previous) employees a living wage, give them benefits and offer profit sharing. We want to keep this staple a part of Seattle life forever,” says Savvy’s Community Manager Greg Gang.

Check out the statement featured on their Kickstarter page below:

Ranked No. 2 on Yelp’s Top 100 Places to Eat in America. Paseo was a Seattle staple near and dear to our hearts.

We won’t be changing the employees or recipes, but we will be changing the work environment, including providing benefits and fair wages to all employees.

When we found out Paseo was shutting down, we were stunned, sad, and angry. How could it be?

The $250,000 goal represents a small portion of the total cost to purchase and operate Paseo, we created the Kickstarter to give the community part ownership, and a stake in the operations of Paseo.

Paseo is more than a sandwich shop. It’s part of Seattle culture. Help us save this Seattle Institution. Be a part of Paseo forever!

The “Save Paseo” Kickstarter webpage goes into detail about how funds will be used and the experience of the investment group within the industry.

“We have worked pretty much every job from bussing to ownership, and everything in between. Fast forward to today, our entrepreneurial spirit in bringing technology to the restaurant industry has provided us a unique opportunity to save something that means a lot to us personally,” writes Gang.

Savvy Orders do acknowledge that $250,000 is a small part of the total cost that is needed for the re-opening. They have also reached out to the Paseo owners and have confirmed that all backers will be refunded if no sale is possible.

The Kickstarter campaign will run through December 12. As of this afternoon the Kickstarter had 13 backers, with $1,851 of the $250,000 goal already raised.

To find out more about the re-opening check out the Save Paseo Facebook Page. To contribute to the campaign click here.

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Development Update November 13: Subdivisions and multi-story structures

November 13th, 2014 by Danielle Anthony-Goodwin

Two subdivision applications, two subdivision approvals and a variety of multi-story applications and decisions make up this week’s development update from the City of Seattle’s Department of Planning and Development (DPD) as posted in the Land Use Information Bulletin. No other applications, appeals, decisions, or notifications in Ballard were made this week

Applications:

2421 NW 57th St

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A Land Use Application has been submitted to subdivide one development site into four unit lots. The construction of residential units are under Project #6397857. 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.

6105 14th Ave NW

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A Land Use Application has been submitted to subdivide one development site into four unit lots. The construction of residential units are under Project #6384776. 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.

2003 NW 57th St

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A Land Use Application has been submitted to allow a 6-story structure containing 118 residential units above 14 live/work units. Parking for 102 vehicles to be provided below grade. Existing sturcure to be demolished.

Decisions:

5601 24th Ave NW

A Land Use Application has been approved to allow a 7-story structure containing 104 assisted living units with approx. 3,470 sq. ft. of retail space at grade. Parking for 61 vehicles to be provided below grade. Existing structures to be demolished. Appeals of this decision must be received by the Hearing Examiner no later than November 24, 2014.

6705 Mary Ave NW

A Land Use Application has been approved to subdivide one development site into two unit lots. The construction of residential units has been approved under Project #6389369. 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. Appeals of this decision must be received by the Hearing Examiner no later than November 24, 2014.

1756 NW 61st St

A Land Use Application has been approved to subdivide one development site into four unit lots. The construction of residential units has been approved under Project #6404600. 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. Appeals of this decision must be received by the Hearing Examiner no later than November 27, 2014.

5601 22nd Ave NW

A Land Use Application has been approved to allow a 6-story building with two 5-story towers above a 1-story base, containing 84 residential units with 22,897 sq. ft. of office and 25,434 sq. ft. of retail. Parking for 142 vehicles to be provided below grade. Project includes 21,100 cu. yds. of grading. Existing structures to be demolished. Appeals of this decision must be received by the Hearing Examiner no later than November 27, 2014.

Comments about the above decisions should be submitted to PRC@seattle.gov or mailed to the address below:

City of Seattle DPD PRC
700 5th Avenue Suite 2000
PO Box 34019
Seattle, WA  98124-4019

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BHS Spotlight Gala set for this Saturday

November 13th, 2014 by Danielle Anthony-Goodwin

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Locals are invited to enjoy a night out while supporting Ballard High School Performing Arts at the Spotlight Gala and Auction this Saturday, November 15.

The event will take place at Leif Erikson Lodge (2245 NW 57th St) from 6 p.m.

Funds raised from the event will help the award-winning program with costs from everything from costumes to clinicians, sheet music to stage lights.

Attendees will enjoy performances by small ensemble groups from the choir, band and orchestra departments.

Event goers can also bid on items in the silent and live auction, such as a framed, autographed photo of Seahawk Malcolm Smith (pictured above), or an Invicta Dive Watch. Attendees can also bid on a Fender guitar that was autographed by the band Warrant. The guitar was lovingly donated by Randy Brinker, the owner of Sweet Mickey’s Candy Shoppe.

Food, drinks, and even some dancing will also fill the evening.

Tickets are $45 and can be purchased online.

Photo of BHS Jazz Band courtesy of Ballard High School Performing Arts.

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Whittier Heights neighborhood group to host meeting about crime increase

November 12th, 2014 by Danielle Anthony-Goodwin

Newly formed neighborhood group Whittier Heights Involved Neighbors (WHIN) has organized a community meeting to discuss the increase in crime in the area.

The meeting is open to all and will be held on Tuesday, November 18, at the Loyal Heights Community Center Room 2 (2101 NW 77th St) from 1:30 p.m. – 3 p.m.

The meeting will center around the rise in property crime in the Whittier Heights area which refers to now common occurrences such as burglary, car thefts and car prowls. Representatives from the SPD North Precinct and the City Council are set to attend the meeting in addition to numerous concerned residents and business owners.

Whittier Heights resident, block captain and member of WHIN, Gina Frank, reports that the meeting has been organized due to both the increase in property crime and the “unacceptably long” 911 response times.

“The increase in property crime coupled with the decrease in police presence/increased 911 response times is the situation which led to the formation of WHIN,” says Frank.

WHIN hopes to make significant progress during the meeting and aims to work with the SPD and the local community to make Whittier Heights a safer place.

“We hope to hear from the SPD North Precinct representatives about what is and can be done in response to this problem and to voice our concerns to City Council in the hopes that they can impact long term solutions,” says Frank.

As the My Ballard team reported in September, a memo was leaked in regards to the North Precinct being severely understaffed to investigate most burglary reports in our area.

The memo, which was leaked to KOMO 4 News, mentioned the dramatic difference between the current and previous levels of detective staff assigned to the North Precinct. The 14 detectives that were assigned to work burglary, theft and juvenile cases in our area has now dropped down to two plus an on-loan patrol officer despite burglary cases increasing to 1,500 a month.

WHIN are hoping to get answers from the SPD in regards to the significant understaffing levels and how they affect the increase of crime in the neighborhood.

If you are unable to attend the meeting and want to provide input Frank reminds locals to write and call City Council to express their concerns. “Locals can also take part in the block watch program and join WHIN if they reside in Whittier Heights,” says Frank.

To find out more about next Tuesday’s meeting or about the work of WHIN email whittierheights@gmail.com.

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Couple searches for lost engagement ring in Ballard

November 12th, 2014 by Danielle Anthony-Goodwin

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Ben and Olivia Watts are on the hunt for Olivia’s sapphire and diamond engagement ring that was lost in the Ballard Blocks shopping center complex.

The couple, who wed two years ago, are desperately searching for the ring and are reaching out to the local community for any assistance.

Ben, who is a producer for The Men’s Room on KISW 99.9 ‘The Rock’, had the ring custom made before proposing to Olivia a few years ago.

Olivia put the ring in her purse while she went to a tanning salon at Ballard Blocks and believes that it may have fallen out when she pulled out her keys as she left the salon.

“We’re still newlyweds. It’s hard to have a loss like this so soon,” Olivia told Washington’s Most Wanted website.

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The couple have searched in local pawn shops here in Ballard and in Magnolia with no success. Ben and Olivia believe that the ring could also possibly be in Magnolia where she ran errands after leaving Ballard Blocks.

The couple are desperately hoping for someone to return the highly sentimental ring to them. The ring (pictured above) is a three-stone cushion cut pink sapphire with white diamonds in a white and rose gold setting.

If you have any information about the lost ring email us at tips@myballard.com and we will put you in touch with Ben and Olivia.

Photos courtesy of Washington’s Most Wanted.

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