Seattle's Magnolia Neighborhood News Blog

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Activists protest at manager’s Magnolia home – not so fast.

January 24th, 2015 by Sara

By reporter Steven Smalley
For the second time in a couple of weeks, a group of animal activists protesting the planned construction of animal testing facilities at the University of Washington were in the neighborhood Sunday to create a commotion with the use of bullhorns, according to neighbors. The target of the demonstrators’ actions, they believed, was at the private home of a Skanska USA project manager, according to the protesters’ website. Except, they got it wrong. The residence belonged to a low-level Skanska employee, not the project manager, according to a company representative.
Noisy demonstrators were reportedly objecting to plans for an animal testing facility at the University of Washington slated to begin in April.
Nearby residents at 22nd & Dravus heard the ruckus and came outside to investigate.
“They were there for an hour or so yelling and handing out flyers,” explained a witness who contacted Magnolia Voice. “It was all very odd. A few other neighbors were out taking pictures and talking to them, too.”
A flyer passed out at the protest read in-part, “Even though the University of Washington is considered a world leader in research, the University continues to invest in outdated animal research methods.” Continuing, it claims, “The University of Washington’s history of using animals in research includes being fined by the USDA for allowing a primate to starve to death, citations for performing unauthorized experiments on primates, and evidence of primates engaging in self-mutilation. The UW uses and kills thousands of animals – primates, mice, pigs, rabbits, cats, and others – every year, and they all suffer and die behind closed doors.”
“Neighbors told them they were at the wrong place,” explains “Kelly” who lives nearby with her husband. “One protester pulled a kerchief over his face to hide it, then got in the face of one of the husbands who came out to watch. (The husband) said, ‘Hey man, don’t cover your face. If you have something to say, then say it.’”
After the demonstrators left, Kelly saw the targeted homeowner in his backyard with a flashlight. “He was very nervous,” she said. “He was looking under his car to make sure everything was safe. He has a young child. The protesters were aggressive.” Then Kelly revealed her own feelings on the subject. “I’m very liberal, and stand behind civil disobedience,” she said. “Just make sure you have the facts right. He’s not doing anything wrong. Just a guy going to work every day – making sure his family is safe. Our community of six houses came together to protect our neighbor.”
“We respect the protesters’ right to speak out in public areas, and we hope they will respect the rights of our employees to safe workplaces and homes,” writes
Chris Toher, Executive Vice President and General Manager of Skanska, Seattle. “I want to clarify that the target of the Magnolia demonstration is not affiliated with the work taking place at the University of Washington.”
 “The University of Washington has been a valued and trusted Skanska client for more than 20 years. We were selected to build their new research facility for our ability to safely and effectively manage the project’s technical construction challenges,” Toher concludes in his email to Magnolia Voice.
Editor’s note- They were back at it again today- for the third time.  These photos were sent in by a reader:
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Fatima School Open House Sunday

January 24th, 2015 by Sara

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All are invited to Our Lady of Fatima Parish School’s Open House, Sunday, January 25th from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

Faculty, current students, and school parents will be available to answer questions and school tours will be provided. Fatima is a K-8 Catholic parochial school in Magnolia since 1954. 80% of their faculty members have advanced degrees, and there are specialist classes for all grades that  include Spanish, Music, P.E. and Art. Extracurricular activities include CYO Sports, Speech Team for 7th and 8th grade, the Spring Musical for students in grade 5 and up, Math Club, and Snow Sports. Service projects each year include Penny Harvest.

Questions? Please contact Michele in the school office 206-283-7031.

Fatima is at 3301 W Dravus St

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No (RV) movement in sight: Living on the street, Magnolia style

January 21st, 2015 by Sara

By reporter Steven Smalley
Click HERE to watch the video report.
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It’s not the first time Magnolia Voice has published this story. As early as 2012 this reporter penned a news item after receiving complaints from readers, regarding vehicles camped overnight on Magnolia streets. Recreational vehicles, buses, and vans roost on 20th Avenue, Gilman, and Government Way night-after-night, year-after-year. Seems not much has changed since that story was produced, except neighbors now report a larcenous twist. “Daniel” writes, “What has been the topic as of late has been the insane amount of stolen packages and goods from peoples’ property.  Today one of our neighbors went down to the illegally parked buses/campers on Gilman and found several of said packaging boxes laid out in front of them.  A police report will be filed, but any action to come from that will probably be nil.”  Campfires are a common occurrence, according to neighbors. “John” writes, “Apparently they can build fires and such right on the sidewalk on the side of the road. I called in one of their fires one time and Seattle Fire Department told me it was illegal, but sympathized that they were just having a fire to cook food, so they weren’t going to do anything about it. It was literally right on the sidewalk! Seems fun until the fire gets out of control they have no provisions to put it out or contain it. Pretty sure if I started a big fire on my sidewalk the police and fire department would be there in a matter of minutes.” The old adage of “squeaky wheel gets the grease” still applies, government sources tell Magnolia Voice. Without phone calls to city hall, nothing will happen. There is no political will, they say.





Last chance to register for Magnolia Little League

January 20th, 2015 by Sara

Magnolia Little League is looking for any and all baseball and softball sluggers! Teams are filling up and registration is closing soon. Players must be registered by February 18, 2015. If you are interested in having your child play baseball or softball, click here.


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Have you seen these stolen items?

January 19th, 2015 by Sara

 John writes:
Got into my car yesterday morning to find that someone had entered it during the night (I’d left it unlocked, so no break-in).  Missing are:
  •  a folding pocket knife
  • a key fob to the parking garage at my office.  has a yellow tag on it
  • my corrective sunglasses

I live on Blaine Street between 34th and 36th. They can text…email me or call me. or 206 972 2844


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Second Lawton Community Playground Project Meeting Thursday

January 19th, 2015 by Sara


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Pancake breakfast for a great cause

January 19th, 2015 by Sara

The Annual Magnolia Moms Pancake Breakfast is coming up on Sunday, January 25th after the 8:30 and 10:30 Masses.  Tickets are $5/person or $25/family at the door.  This event entirely funds their Easter Basket Project, which provides Easter baskets to women and children living in transitional housing.   Last year, they delivered around 200 baskets to the shelters that they support (Sacred Heart Shelter, CCS Refugee Assistance, Ballard WIC Maternity Services & Harrington House). All are welcome to partake in the yummy pancakes in Fatima’s Parish Hall.

Want to help? Magnolia Moms need the following donations of the following items to fill baskets:

Kids items: gently used stuffed animals and books, coloring books, crayons, playdoh, and bubbles

Toiletries: toothpaste, toothbrushes, shampoo, conditioner, deodorant, baby wash and diaper cream

Please contact Jennifer Livingston ( or Dawn Apacible ( for more information about how to help with the Easter Basket Project or to coordinate a donation.  Cash donations are also welcome!  Please make checks payable to Magnolia Moms.

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Man stabbed at Boxcar

January 16th, 2015 by Sara

We are getting multiple reports that a man was stabbed at Boxcar Ale House earlier this evening.  Sources say he was taken to Harborview with non-life threatening injuries.  The suspect was arrested at the scene.

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Photo from @NickKIRO7

More information when we get it.



Magnolia Community Center Preschool says “show me your gameface!”

January 16th, 2015 by Sara

Magnolia Preschool says

The Magnolia Community Center and the the preschool program are bringing back the “Tot 12″ to celebrate our Seattle Seahawks, and they want all of  the community kiddos to get their 12 on! So bring you game face photo over to the MCC and add it to their Game Face banner!



Go Hawks!


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Private police? Just pay for it.

January 14th, 2015 by Sara

By reporter Steven Smalley

Burglaries, car prowls, break-ins – it seems these crimes happen in Magnolia more often these days. “We’re Number One” doesn’t relate so much to football as it does this state’s national ranking for property crime. Believe it.
According to reported new FBI statistics, Washington is highest in the country for property rip-offs. On top of that, it doesn’t help when leaked memos show that Seattle Police lack the staffing to properly investigate these crimes.
In a document never meant to be seen outside the department, local news media was given a peek into some Seattle precincts that have gone from 15 officers assigned to investigate property crime, to a low of three. Unless a miscreant is delivered with a Big Red Bow, some say, these crimes never get solved. It’s no coincidence your call to 9-1-1 is met with less-than-enthusiastic officials. Police response time is now measured in hours, not minutes. Reaction by officers to their plight is routinely no more than a shrug, homeowners report.
Now this….
Some neighborhoods in the city purchase the services of off-duty Seattle cops to ride in their own cars and patrol the streets. Law enforcement officers are paid directly by the residents they safeguard.
Using police radios in communication with SPD dispatch, and carrying firearms, uniformed officers monitor 9-1-1 calls and inevitably arrive at the scene before on-duty cruisers.
For $200 per year, you too can have private protection.
In the Laurelhurst neighborhood, for example, residents experienced a high rate of car break-ins. During one holiday period, 70 neighbors decided to pitch in for additional private patrols as an experiment, according to Brian McMullen, Laurelhurst Community Council trustee and crime prevention coordinator.
“We saw a drop in car prowls, so we decided to expand (private patrols) to half of the neighborhood,” he explained to Magnolia Voice. “We printed up flyers and dropped them on everybody’s porch – probably 700 homes. With their response, we were able to get three or four nights a week for the rest of the year.”
Following that success, the coverage was doubled and expanded to the entire neighborhood. Uniformed Seattle police were patrolling Laurelhurst six nights a week.
“We make it known we have the patrol,” McMullen says. “We hope it’s a deterrent to keep people out of the neighborhood. We try to have one dayshift a week. The rest are varied.”
Some local residents think private patrols could work for Magnolia.
“I hope people consider this and be open to the idea of it,” says Jamie Williams, business owner and long time Magnolia resident. “A $200 investment is $20 a month for extra security. I like the idea of that.”
As for our top-ranking in property crimes, “It’s heartbreaking,” she says. “I feel something should be done about it. Maybe having a private patrol is an answer. It’s unfortunate that it’s come to this, especially with the tax dollars we pay.”
Other neighborhoods are considering the idea of private patrols as well. Whittier Heights is just one.
From the Whittier Heights Patrol Association website: “Our mission is to bring a subscription based security patrol to the Whittier Heights neighborhood using agency hired off duty law enforcement personnel…Through community meetings it has been determined that the Seattle Police Department, because of staffing issues, is unable to respond to criminal activity in our neighborhood… Meanwhile another busy crime season is approaching and we do not have enough security personnel to cover our neighborhood. This is one way we can do something about this problem.”
In the meantime, Williams hopes the Magnolia community will try the idea. “It’s your right if you can to protect your neighborhood to participate in something like this,” she says. “For some of us it means giving up four lattes a month.”
What do you think? Leave a comment.