Seattle's Magnolia Neighborhood News Blog

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January 12th, 2015 by Sara


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Who, What, When, Where, How and Why

January 12th, 2015 by Sara

John Maynard reporting
Hello, Magnolians. In furthering my quest of a Cub Reporter badge, may I address such issues as…
BAH, HUMBUG! Flying blatantly in the face of holiday joy, and counterpoint to Christmas glad tidings, some Scroogey citizen near 28th and Garfield brazenly flew their full-sized Bah, Humbug! banner high atop their side-yard flag pole. But it may have backfired as those who saw it found themselves having a good laugh. Good on ya, Mr. & Mrs. Grinch! And same to ya.
SPEAKING OF THE HOLIDAYS – Did everyone remember to arrive about 20-minutes early for your parties and social functions? This allows extra time to gripe about Seattle traffic, which now seems to be a requisite prelude to most conversations.
POST OFFICE ODDITY – Tried to mail a package at the Magnolia P.O. I was told by the affable man behind the counter, “Sorry, not today. I can’t sell you stamps because you see, I’m the supervisor. I can’t take your money. Come back later when there’s a clerk.”
“Okay, how about I leave you the money and if there is any change, I can pick it up later from the clerk.”
“Nope, can’t do it. I’m the supervisor. I can’t take any money.”
“Oh, I get it. An UNsupervised P.O. works best. Good thing Dan Penhollow’s Magnolia Mailbox is just across the street.”
THE GIM – This may be of little concern to most Magnolians, but your reporter was saddened recently to learn that the Gim Wah now closes as 1a.m. It used to be 2, the way God wants it. That only leaves us with the Boxcar Alehouse. Ever been there at that critical hour? Whoa!! Compare the adventure to clamping your noggin in the Ace Hardware paint shaker for a few minutes.
LANGUAGE – A question. Does it seem most Magnolia teens and 20-somethings employ only a few words in their vocabulary these days? Or to translate that into Teen Speak: Dude, like, does it, like, seem as like, most, you know, like, teens and stuff, like, only employ, like, a few words, or whatever, like, into their, like, vocabulary? Like, whatever.
And finally…
TO AL SNARFINGTON, who implied in the Comments section that all it takes to write this blog is a few stiff ones at The Gim. My thoughts…first, Snarfington, how insulting. And secondly…yes, sir. You are correct, sir.
In two weeks I am going to totally abuse this column by promoting my band, The Turdles, playing February 14 at the Swedish Club.
Oh, and have I ever mentioned in this blog that leaf blowers are a dagger in the very heart of the human spirit? I did? Perfect.
Okeydoke. Till then…
John Maynard


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SPD seeking information on prolific burglar who targeted Queen Anne, Magnolia, and North Seattle

January 9th, 2015 by Sara

UPDATE-Here is a posting from a local parenting site.  This guy tried to GET IN THE HOUSE WHEN THIS LADY WAS HOME. Please be careful and call 911 if you see Meadow-Mittenen.

HE CAME TO MY HOUSE YESTERDAY!!! I refused to open the door for his bogus story and called the police to report a suspicious man in Magnolia!!!!! I’m on hold with the police again to tell them that I’m 99% sure it was this man! His hair is like the shorter haircut photo right now if it’s him. He was dressed (yesterday on 01.08.15) in a navy or faded black sport jacket and slacks or something…. I didn’t see him up close because I didn’t open the door, but as he was walking away I looked out the mail slot in the door and I’m 99% certain this is him as I saw him from the side as he turned out my driveway and onto the sidewalk on foot heading north. BEWARE! Lock your doors! He’s using a bogus story about just having moved into the neighborhood to try to get you to open the door!!! I asked him, “where did you just move in?” because there haven’t been any sales on my street, etc. in the last few weeks… He said well that’s what he needed help with, that he had only been in town 7 days and that he needed help finding a house. I told him I couldn’t help him and when he asked when he could come back I told him not to. PLEASE lock your doors. Our front door is hard to see from the street so I’m certain he was targeting our house because it would’ve been easy to try to break in without being seen. Do not fall for a story like this. Do not open your door to random people knocking (he even did kind of a strong “shave and a haircut…” knock on the door to sound familiar/friendly. THANK GOODNESS I asked who it was before opening the door. I called the police again to report that this is the guy I saw. Hope they catch him soon. Thanks for posting!!!


From Laura at our sister site Queen Anne View

Joshua Meadow-Mittenen is a “prolific burglar” who has been tied to multiple burglaries, including several recent Queen Anne burglaries and a Magnolia New Year’s Eve break-in. If you see him or have any information that could help SPD find him, call 911. A Magnolia resident spotted this suspect when he came to her home yesterday, Thursday, January 8th. She called SPD. Call 911 if you see him in the neighborhood.

Burglar SPD 0115 Burglar 2

Full details from SPD below:

Can You Help Major Crimes Detectives Find Prolific Burglar?
Written by  on A prolific burglar is wanted by police after he fled from Major Crimes Detectives earlier today at the Northgate Mall.Detectives believe Joshua Meadow-Mittenen, 24, is connected to several recent burglaries in North Seattle and Queen Anne, as well as a New Year’s Eve break-in Magnolia.

Police attempted to arrest Meadow-Mittenen outside Northgate Mall today around 1 PM after receiving information he had planned to meet there with a criminal associate.

SPD collage burglar

Officers spotted Meadow-Mittenen driving a white Dodge Charger through the mall’s parking lot, but he sped away when police tried to take him into custody.

Meadow-Mittenen is 6’0, 185 lbs with green eyes and brown hair. Detectives believe Meadow-Mittenen is driving a black Chrysler 200 bearing Washington license plate APH7751, or a white 2013 Dodge Charger with Washington plate AJG1332.

If you have any information which could lead detectives to Meadow-Mittenen, please contact police at (206) 786-2746 or 911.


Last night’s fog looked cool, but smelled awful – here’s why

January 8th, 2015 by Sara

Editor’s note: This may be why Magnolia was a bit stinky…

By Laura at our sister site Queen Anne View
We noticed the stench of sewage, sulfur, paper mill, pick-your-poison last night when the fog rolled in – and readers commented on it as well. It wasn’t limited to Queen Anne, reports of the stink were coming in via Twitter from Capitol Hill, Wallingford, Ballard, downtown… basically the city of Seattle was stinky.Today, a reader tipped us via Twitter that Seattle Weekly got an explanation for the smell from UW meteorologist Cliff Mass.“There was a strong, low level inversion above Seattle last night, with the cold fog layer below. The inversion acts as a lid to pollutants. Plus, the winds were weak so there was little mixing. That allows pollutants and smells to concentrate. The smells of the city… unmixed and concentrated… The Puget Sound Clean Air Agency is not reporting any decline in air quality… I checked with them.”So, there you go. Let’s see what the fog brings tonight… hopefully just the visual senses will be affected.UPDATE: you can read Cliff Mass’ blog post on the stink with graphs and more here.
Space Needle fog Jan 7

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Fremont Bridge closed Friday and Saturday nights

January 8th, 2015 by Sara

From Laura at our sister site Queen Anne View

If you’re heading home to Queen Anne from or via Fremont this weekend – or perhaps heading over the Fremont Bridge in the early morning hours for a run or bike ride – plan ahead. As part of the Fremont Bridge Painting Project, SDOT will be closing the bridge completely to vehicles, bicycles, and pedestrians on both Friday and Saturday nights. The closures will run from 11:59pm each night until 7am the following morning. During the closures, crews will be repainting the portions of the bridge that cannot otherwise be reached with traffic. Cars, trucks, and buses will be detoured between midnight and 7am both nights.

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P.U. Did anyone else smell that?

January 8th, 2015 by Sara

There was a terrible odor in our part of town last night.  Did you guys smell it? This tipster did:

What was the stink last night?  It was not a gas leak according to PSE.  Was it a sewage issue, or just tide + fog….I called PSE and Sewage Treatment Plant….please report what they find out.  In my 12 years of owning a house in Magnolia, it has never been this bad.

Let us know!

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Meet Magnolia’s Mike Lawson-political thriller author

January 5th, 2015 by Sara

Magnolia author Mike Lawson will sign his new release, Viking Bay; the second novel in his Kay Hamilton series at Magnolia’s bookstore, January 11th at 3pm.


book guy book guys book

The popular author has lived in Magnolia for more than 40 years. When we asked him about the inspiration for his political thrillers, he said that he “worked for the government, the U.S. Navy, and also lived in Washington, D.C.”  He mentions on his website:

 I love the city because it’s a “target rich” environment for a writer.  There’s always something happening there – something corrupt, something outrageous, something heroic and dangerous – that provides inspiration for fiction. It’s also a place where important things happen involving powerful organizations like CIA, the Pentagon, and the NSA – and the real life operations of those organizations are quite often more astounding than fiction.

His 12th book is coming out in July. You may just have seen him working on one of his novels at Starbucks.  Lawson says he has spent a lot of time writing in the Village. Interesting note-he got his first book deal when he retired.

A spokesperson for the bookstore says “We are once again excited to have Mike in the store to share his work with us.”

Lawson adds that neighbors have been so generous in coming to the Magnolia bookstore for signings and buying books.

Magnolia’s Bookstore is at 3206 W. McGraw St. Check out this link for previews.

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Help a neighbor in need-donate your warm clothing

January 2nd, 2015 by Sara


Help neighbors in need this winter by donating your new or gently worn sweaters, coats and cold-weather gear to KCTS 9’s 18TH annual Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood Sweater Drive, running from January 12 through February 8. All donated items will go to Wellspring Family Services, Queen Anne Helpline and Northwest Center, serving Seattle and King County.
Look for the Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood Sweater Drive collection bin at any PCC Natural Markets location or Sound Credit Union location in Western Washington; or drop your items off at KCTS 9‘s Seattle Center studio. Warm clothing for children is greatly needed, but all new or gently used adult and children’s sweaters and coats will be accepted.
“All of us, at some time or other, need help,” said Fred Rogers. “Whether we’re giving or receiving a sweater, each one of us has something valuable to bring to this world. That’s one of the things that connects us as neighbors—in our way, everyone is a giver and receiver.”
Fred Rogers began the sweater drive and inspired its spirit of generosity and neighborliness for six years before he passed away in 2003. His red sweater (knitted by his mom) and tennis shoes bring to mind comfort, care and joy in learning for millions. KCTS 9 is honored to continue the program in his memory. Last year’s Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood Sweater Drive collected more than 7,500 sweaters and coats—5,336 pounds of warm clothing—for families in need throughout Seattle and King County.

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Finn’s Bakery burgled. Looks like inside job.

December 31st, 2014 by Sara

By reporter Steven Smalley
The window of opportunity was tiny. The overnight workers left Finn’s – the small bakery in our Village – at 4:15 a.m., Dec. 29. The first employee of the day arrived at 5:45 a.m. Within that small time frame someone entered the premises without damaging any doors, used the entry code to open the safe, made off with $980, and locked the door behind them. Police call this rip-off, “an inside job.”
With the owner, Meghan Hargraves, back east on holiday, it was up to employees to pick up the pieces, begin to learn what happened, and who did it. They have their suspicions. Although no video was found from neighboring businesses, it didn’t take much to put together a scenario based on the history of a previous employee who recently resigned.
“It was someone we trusted who would do this,” said an employee who spoke with Magnolia Voice. “It’s really violating. We brought them into the family, then they just turn around and steal from us.”
The only other item taken during the heist was the iPad workers use to clock in, among other business functions. A neighboring business kindly lent them another.
In the meantime, “Everyone is staying,” the employee revealed. “No one is leaving. We’re pulling together.”
Finn’s asks anyone who saw a car or person in the Village during that time to come forward and give identifying information.
The employee says the loss will be covered by insurance.

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Shaun’s top 10 New Year’s party tips

December 29th, 2014 by Sara

A guest post from our friend Shaun Myrick

It’s that time again — time to say good-bye to 2014 and ring in the New Year.  My wish for you is that 2015 is one of the best years to date.  It’s time to eat, play and live a satisfying, stylish and loving life and to get ready for the New Year.  How good is that?

Start the New Year off right — here’s how:

1.  Determine which midnight youll celebrate.  There is no shame in celebrating New Year’s at 9 p.m. and then going to bed-were not all night owls.

2.  If you’re having a party to ring in midnight, have guests arrive around 9 p.m., this way you can take a nap prior to your guests arrival.

3.  Serve a signature champagne cocktail.  Save the real champagne for midnight.

4.  Have plenty of appetizers to keep your guests fueled up.  Most people start a diet the next day; why not start early and have healthy snacks such as veggies, hummus etc. at the ready?  We have all had plenty of sweets and fat over the past few weeks, after all.

5.  If you have a streaming device, make a photo gallery of the past year.  You and your friends can reminisce over the past year.

6.  Un-decorate your Christmas tree and redecorate it with streamers and confetti as a New Years Tree.

 7.  Have guests write down their New Year’s resolutions on index size cards and place them on the tree.  If you share your resolution, there are more people to help keep you accountable.

 8.  Make take away gifts for your guests.  I love to make little jars of black eyed peas with seasonings and a recipe for each guest to make on New Year’s Day.  It brings good luck!

 9.  Unless you have quest rooms for everyone, make sure your guests have designated drivers, or have access to a taxi or Uber.

 10.  Start the New Year by making sure to follow all my tips for your home here.

 Happy New Year, Magnolia!