News blog for Seattle's Maple Leaf neighborhood

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First Ave. N.E. to close nightly for weeks

August 1st, 2015 by Mike

Crews working overnight to relocate utility lines will close First Avenue Northeast between Northeast 95th and Northeast 100th streets for several weeks.

The closure is from 7:30 p.m. to 5 a.m. A detour will be marked to Fifth Avenue Northeast.

That section of First is already heavily impacted by preliminary work on light rail, and the utility relocation is necessary before beginning construction of Northgate Station early next year.

From Sound Transit:

This work is expected to take approximately two to three weeks to complete. No high impact noise activities (such as jackhammering or saw-cutting) are scheduled to take place after 10 p.m. Access to homes and businesses will be maintained.

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Arson victims thank neighbors for support

August 1st, 2015 by Mike

Victims of the arson fire here a week ago are thanking neighbors for their support, and plan to rent a Maple Leaf home to live in. (Thanks, Lisa, for the tip.)

The Gibbons family, which fled their burning home with only the clothes they were wearing, wrote on a gofundme page:

We, the Gibbons family, would like to give a huge heartfelt thank you to all those who have so generously donated. The support from family, friends and even strangers has been beyond incredible. We are so blessed to be part of such an amazing community. We have recently found a rental in the neighborhood and are looking forward to moving in and regaining some sense of normalcy. Thanks again for all of your support and well wishes.

In five days the campaign has raised $6,530 from 73 individual donations.

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City-council-by-district primary election is Tuesday

July 31st, 2015 by Mike

Next Tuesday, Aug. 4, is the deadline to return mail ballots in Seattle’s district-by-district primary election.

Most of Maple Leaf is in Council District 5, with only a small southern toe in District 4.

Over at Crosscut, political consultant Benjamin Anderstone has posted a demographic look at the council districts.

Of District 5, which also includes a big chunk of north Seattle, he says:

District 5: Anti-establishment voters.

“The truth is that this North End district is the hardest to pin down this year. It was the only district to begin the year without a sitting City Council member, and hasn’t had one for years. It attracted a slew of political newcomers and younger activists…. D5 has actually seen a whopping $377,461 spent already.

“A lot of that feverish spending is precisely because D5 is up for grabs.”

(He characterizes District 4 as Single-family homeowners.)

What else about District 5?

In this free-for-all of relative unknowns, there has been a race to find an issue that builds momentum. In D5, gaining traction often is about taking on the establishment – a feeling that City Hall is not concerned about this end of town.

Besides the oft-cited lack of sidewalks issue, a number of political issues are at play. One is that D5 voters are a bit skeptical of shelling out taxes. Tax votes for amenities like transportation and parks lag behind in D5 relative to its near-north neighbors, D4 and D6. This may reflect longstanding concerns about the far North End not receiving its fair share of city resources.

Read his full post here.

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Three teens arrested after armed robbery in Maple Leaf

July 30th, 2015 by Mike

A 14-year-old boy was robbed at knife point Wednesday night in Maple Leaf, Seattle police say.

In an email early this afternoon Officer Lauren Lovanhill writes:

Officers arrested three robbers last night and recovered stolen property belonging to a 14-year-old boy shortly after they were taken at knife point.

The boy was walking home from his friend’s house in Maple Leaf just after 10 p.m. last night when two subjects, 15 and 16-years-old, ran up to him. They grabbed him and pulled him to the side of a building where another 18-year-old suspect approached and held a knife to his neck and demanded his wallet and backpack. The robbers asked what size shoe he wore and when he told them 9.5, they told him he was “lucky that his feet were small.”

The robbers stole his backpack along with the clothes off his back and ran off.

The victim flagged down a bicyclist who offered his cell phone to call 911.

Officer Ryan Ellis found three suspects matching the description not far away. The victim confirmed the three detained were the same people who robbed him.

A K9 officer arrived and helped locate the victim’s stolen items. Most were found strewn along the sidewalk from the scene to where the robbers were found. The rest of his property was found in the pockets of the suspects as well as the knife used.

One of the suspects was booked into King County Jail and the other two were juveniles and booked into the Youth Service Center for investigation of Robbery.

The email does not give an exact location. However, the Seattle Police crime map shows a ROBBERY-STREET-WEAPON at Northeast 85th Street and Roosevelt Way Northeast at 10:27 p.m. Wednesday.

In addition, Jodi posted Wednesday night at Nextdoor Northgate/Maple Leaf:

Several police vehicles arrived at corner of 12th Avenue Northeast and Northeast 94th Street, following one patrol car that used a megaphone to tell the occupant to “come out, now.” This was about 10:30 p.m. and cars with flashing lights still there. Anyone with information would be appreciated if you post.

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Body found at Thornton Place parking garage; police increase area patrols

July 30th, 2015 by Mike

Update Aug. 1: As Northgate Nan points out in comments, this death was ruled a suicide by the medical examiner.

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A woman’s body was found in the parking garage at Thornton Place, just south of Northgate Mall, Wednesday evening.

In addition to housing, Thornton Place includes restaurants and a popular Regal movie theater.

From Seattle Police overnight:

Homicide detectives are investigating after Seattle firefighters found a woman dead inside a car in North Seattle early Wednesday evening.

Officers were called to a parking garage in the 300 block of Northeast 103rd Street at 7:30 tonight when Seattle firefighters discovered an adult female unresponsive inside a car. Homicide detectives and crime scene investigators are on scene where they are currently collecting evidence and canvassing for witnesses. Detectives will work with the Medical Examiner to identify the victim and cause of death in this case.

Officers have have increased patrols in the area following this investigation. Anyone with information is asked to call the Homicide/Assault Tip Line at (206)233-5000

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The Maple Leaf 20th Summer Social is on!

July 29th, 2015 by Mike

Update July 30th: The Maple Leaf Community Council has added 32 photos here.

Photos from the Summer Social, courtesy of Maple Leaf photographer Dane Doerflinger. More of his photographs are here.

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This evening’s 20th annual Maple Leaf Ice Cream Social has started.

It runs until 8:30 p.m. next to the playground at Maple Leaf Reservoir Park, Roosevelt Way Northeast and Northeast 85th Street.

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Maple Leaf Summer Social is Wednesday

July 28th, 2015 by Mike

The Maple Leaf Ice Cream Summer Social is Wednesday evening.

This 20th year the social lasts from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at Maple Leaf Reservoir Park, next to the playground area.

See you there!

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Residents advised to manage water use as city activates water shortage response plan

July 28th, 2015 by Mike

This report courtesy of our sister site PhinneyWood.

Also, Cliff Mass has posted on water and future weather here. Nutshell: Our winter likely to be much drier than normal.

Because of historic low river levels and this summer’s heat wave, Seattle, Tacoma and Everett have activated water shortage response plans, with the first phase asking residents to be mindful of their water use.

Seattle’s water supply outlook is fair and, like Everett, supply is projected to be adequate until fall rains typically return. With today’s activation of its Water Shortage Contingency Plan, the city is taking the needed steps to further maximize its water supply for people and fish in the event this unusual weather continues.

Seattle operates a regional water supply system that serves Seattle as well as 25 other cities and water districts in King County.

If conditions worsen, each city may move to the “voluntary” phase of water shortage response and ask customers to reduce the amount of water they normally use each day.

Examples of good water management include:

• Watering early or late: Water before 8 a.m. or after 7 p.m., which reduces evaporation.
• Watering deeply, but infrequently: It’s better to have one or two deep waterings, rather than several shallow waterings.
• Fixing leaks: Fix obvious indoor and outdoor leaks such as at faucets, hose bibs and sprinkler spray heads. Check for less obvious leaks such as silent toilet leaks. Put several drops of food coloring in your toilet tank; after 10 minutes if you have color in the toilet bowl, you have a flapper leak.
• Washing vehicles wisely: Wash your vehicle(s) at locations that recycle their water.
• Using a broom, not a hose: Use a broom, rather than a hose, to clean sidewalks, driveways and patios.
• Washing full loads: Wait until your clothes washer and dishwasher are full before starting.

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Collection, service tonight for arson victims, plus GoFundMe page

July 27th, 2015 by Mike

Update 5:30 p.m. The GoFundMe site is now a third of the way to the goal, at $3,310 in 31 individual donations.

We can’t make it to the service and collection tonight, but would appreciate comments from folks who do. Thanks.

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A prayer service and funds collection for victims of last week’s arson fire will be held tonight at 6:30 p.m. at St. Catherine of Siena Parish, across the street from the fire.

In addition, a new GoFundMe site has been set up to raise $10,000 for one family affected by the blaze. At noon today it had taken in $2,200 from 15 donors.

In the early hours of Thursday, July 23, a fire broke out and overtook three homes in the NE Seattle neighborhood of Maple Leaf. One of the homes belonged to one of our very own St. Catherine’s families, the Gibbons Family.

Gratefully, all the members of the family and their beloved dog and pet lizard made it out safely, but their family’s home has been completely destroyed. The Gibbons Family left with literally nothing more than the clothes they wore when they left the house. Between the fire and water damage, not much has been salvageable.

With all of the offers for help, we felt that a focused effort, such as a GoFundMe page, would be the most efficient way for people to help the Gibbons Family, while allowing the family to use the resources in whatever ways suit their particular needs.

The GoFundMe page is here. The parish, which was also damaged by the fire,  is at 814 N.E. 85th St.

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Rain, thunder, hail coming?

July 26th, 2015 by Mike

Monday a.m.: Total rain = .08 inches. On top of .22 inches Friday night into Saturday.

6 p.m. Sun.

5 p.m. (Post The Score.) Steady rain.

3:33 p.m. Light rain has arrived.

Here’s the short-term forecast issued two minutes earlier for East Puget Sound lowlands – Seattle and vicinity:

SHOWERS WITH ISOLATED THUNDERSTORMS FROM KITSAP COUNTY SOUTH INTO THURSTON AND LEWIS COUNTIES ARE MOVING EAST OVER THE PUGET SOUND WATERS AND INTO WESTERN KING AND PIERCE COUNTIES. SMALL HAIL AND BRIEF HEAVY RAINS ARE POSSIBLE WITH THESE STORMS.

Local forecast calls for 90 percent chance of rain this afternoon.

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Another missing cat, Wiscotee

July 26th, 2015 by Mike

Tanya emails this morning:

“We would like to post about our lost cat.

“Her name is Wiscotee. She is a black and white medium-to-long hair tuxedo cat with white paws. She is usually very friendly and curious.

“She will explore your car or maybe even your house if you leave the door open. We last saw her the evening of Monday July 16th at the east end of 15th Avenue Northeast and Northeast 102nd Steet.

“We live near the Thornton Creek ravine. Please call if you see her or find her. (206) 387-3410. Or email tinette1@msn.com.

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Prayer service, collection Monday for fire victims

July 25th, 2015 by Mike

“There will be a prayer service on Monday, July 27th, at 6:30 p.m. at St. Catherine’s Parish across the street from the fires,” writes Maiya (and Erica) in comments on our earlier post.

“They will collect any cash donations for the families that the community would like to make as well as any written well-wishes for those affected. At this time the parish did not think the families needed clothing, food or other material items, but that could change in the coming weeks.”

Her information is coming from the church.

On Friday the Seattle Fire Department tweeted:

Yesterday’s fire on 8 Ave NE damaged 6 structures was determined to be intentionally set. $2.5 million loss. SPD is investigating.

More information on the Thursday morning fire, including photos, can be found on the fire department’s Fire Line here.

There is a standard $10,000 reward fund for information that helps solve arson fires.

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Husky/Malamute found here this morning

July 23rd, 2015 by Mike

Update: Dog is home.

Lisa says a Husky or Malamute was found this morning in the neighborhood.

If you have information, please leave it in comments.

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Two-alarm house fire overnight here – neighbors want to help

July 23rd, 2015 by Mike

Update: In comments, below, neighbors are suggesting ways to help.

Gary posted this to our Facebook page, saying: “View from my deck. The flames were taller than St Catherine’s, I could feel the heat from my deck. Glad everybody was OK and not hurt! Craziest fire I’ve seen in a residential fire. Reminded of the night Reckless burnt down along with the rest of the shops next to Snappy.

About 100 firefighters battled a two-alarm house fire overnight on Eighth Avenue Northeast.

Eighth remains closed this morning between Northeast 88th and 85th streets.

Our news partner The Seattle Times has the story here.

Embers spewing from the fires also started a blaze at a garage across an alley from the three homes. The heat was so intense that it blew out five windows at The St. Catherine of Siena School across the street.

KOMO TV has a story here, saying four homes were damaged.

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Two missing cats – Mr. Smudge and Smokey

July 22nd, 2015 by Mike

Two neighborhood cats disappeared on Sunday.

Xris tells Nextdoor Northgate/Maple Leaf: “Mr. Smudge disappeared Sunday evening from Northeast 80th Street and Fourth Avenue Northeast. He is an indoor cat, shy and a little skittish. My mother in law has dementia and Mr. Smudge is one of the few things she remembers from day to day

“If you see him, call me on 206-255-3665.”

And Michael emails this morning:

“Smokey, a long, lean,older male cat, mostly light gray with white and cream markings and white socks has been missing since Sunday, July 19.

“Last seen in the area of Northeast 107th Street and 14th Avenue Northeast, just north of Thornton Creek. If you’ve seen him, please let us know. Contact: Michael at mmc13@mac.com. Thank you. – Michael McCarthy”

A third cat – Franklin – went missing Monday but was found under a deck by evening.

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