Skyline High School Spartans move into first place

April 14, 2010

NEW — 10:48 a.m. April 14, 2010

Travis Strawn scored two goals Tuesday as he led the Skyline High School boys soccer team to a 2-0 4A KingCo Conference victory against host Roosevelt.

With the victory, Skyline boosted its league record to 4-1-0 and moved into first place. Roosevelt dropped out of the top spot and into a tie with Issaquah for second place.

The victory was Skyline’s third straight.

Issaquah rallied for a 3-2 victory against visiting Ballard. Michael Axelson, assisted by Michael Roberts, scored the winning goal at the 79th minute. Carter Mitchell and Lucas Morais scored Issaquah’s other goals. The Eagles are 3-1-1 in league play.

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Tea Party serves up Issaquah rally Thursday

April 14, 2010

NEW — 6 a.m. April 14, 2010

A Tax Day Tea Party will return to downtown Issaquah for a second year.

Participants will gather at the corner of Front Street and Sunset Way at noon April 15, the deadline for filing federal income tax returns.

Turnout could be bolstered at the rally due to opposition to the healthcare law signed into law by President Obama in late March. Organizers also plan events in Seattle, on the steps of the state Capitol in Olympia and at Bellevue City Hall. Find a list of Tea Party events across the state here.

Demonstrators in Issaquah and across the nation used the deadline for filing income tax returns last year for a grassroots event modeled on the Boston Tea Party. The event attracted more than 200 people to the steps of Issaquah City Hall.

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Issaquah playwright Brian Yorkey wins Pulitzer Prize

April 13, 2010

Brian Yorkey

The musical “Next to Normal” — a daring look into bipolar disorder penned by Issaquah native Brian Yorkey and nurtured at Village Theatre — has won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama. Read more

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Police arrest man for attempting to lure boy

April 13, 2010

Issaquah Police arrested a 19-year-old Issaquah man April 10 after police said he tried to lure a boy into a bookstore restroom.

Police said the man had acted inappropriately near the 11-year-old boy at Barnes & Noble Booksellers, 1530 11th Ave. N.W. Barnes & Noble employees said the suspect had been escorted from the store twice, but remained on the walkway outside.

Officers determined the man had twice attempted to lure the boy into the store restroom. Police said the man might have been waiting outside the store for the boy to exit. Deputy Police Chief Steve Cozart said the man had passed notes to the boy. The boy or his father then reported the activity to store employees. Officers arrived at about 9:45 p.m.

Officers arrived as the boy and his father left the store. Cozart said officers then interviewed the boy and his father.

Police located the suspect outside as his family members continued to shop inside the store.

Police booked the man into the King County Jail for child luring and communicating with a minor for immoral purposes.

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Scientists release kokanee fry to re-establish species

April 13, 2010

On a rain-soaked night late last month, scientists gathered along the banks of Ebright Creek to complete the latest step in a monthslong experiment meant to pull a species from the edge of extinction.

The team used buckets to transfer Lake Sammamish kokanee salmon fry — a few millimeters long and not much larger than a paperclip — from aerated coolers for the last leg of the journey from a hatchery to the wild.

Months earlier, biologists and ecologists collected mature kokanee from the same creek, as part of a last-ditch effort to boost the population of the dwindling species. From Ebright, Lewis and Laughing Jacobs creeks, teams took the fish to the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery, where teams harvested almost 35,000 eggs.

Scientists had not attempted to raise Lake Sammamish kokanee at a hatchery before. Throughout fall and winter, workers at the state hatcheries in Ravensdale and Lakewood raised the fry from fluorescent orange eggs.

Hans Berge, a King County senior ecologist, and a team gathered March 25 to release about 14,000 fry into the same creeks where he and others netted spawning salmon last fall. In a reverse maneuver, the team plunked the fledgling kokanee into the creeks on a cloudy, wet night.

The nighttime release offered less risk of predators picking off the fry.

Scientists deposited the fry far upstream from Lake Sammamish to allow the fish time to “imprint” on the creeks. Biologists hope the fry memorize the characteristics of the waterways and someday return to the creeks as stop-sign-red, mature salmon to spawn.

Berge estimates the fry swam from the creeks into the lake on the same night as the release. Inside Lake Sammamish, the fry feed on microscopic organisms called zooplankton. Only a fraction of the fry will reach maturity and — in three or four years — return to the creeks to spawn.

Within the next few weeks, scientists will release another 20,000 kokanee fry into Ebright, Lewis and Laughing Jacobs creeks. Read more

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Officers do time for tips

April 13, 2010

Order-up! Issaquah’s police officers will serve up burgers, shakes and fries at the annual Tip-A-Cop event from noon to 8 p.m. April 17 at Issaquah’s Red Robin restaurant, 1085 Lake Drive.

Issaquah Police Chief Paul Ayers (left) receives compliments and an after-meal tip from Karen Price and daughter Sara, during the 2009 Issaquah Red Robin Tip-A-Cop fundraiser for Special Olympics Washington. By Greg Farrar

All of the tip money earned by the officers’ service goes directly to Special Olympics Washington. Special Olympics provides year-round sporting activities, including swimming, basketball, track and field for children and adults with special needs.

Local police agencies will also bring several law enforcement vehicles to the event and volunteers will be on hand to take photos for donations.

If having a police officer for your waiter isn’t enough, check out the crowd of motorcycles arriving at Red Robin at 2 p.m. Police officers are leading a motorcycle tour through Issaquah, coordinated with other riders from Costco, Microsoft, Siemens and Spacelabs Healthcare. The ride starts at noon at the Issaquah Microsoft campus, 21295 S.E. 51st St.

Patrons who can’t make the event can donate money to the cause at the restaurant.

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Garbage strike averted

April 13, 2010

The trash haulers responsible for the Greenwood Point and South Cove neighborhoods lifted the threat of a strike April 11 and approved a new contract with garbage company Allied Waste.

Allied Waste had reached a tentative agreement with the haulers’ union March 31.

Meanwhile, the company responsible for most of Issaquah, Waste Management, awaits a decision from haulers. Haulers for the company continued to work without a contract April 11. The haulers’ contract expired at midnight March 31, and haulers had authorized a strike.

Teamsters Local 174 negotiators rejected what Waste Management described as the “best, last, final offer” in early April.

Issaquah officials devoted a section of the municipal Web site,, to the labor situation, and the city encouraged residents to check the site. Waste Management also directed questions about trash pickup to the company Web site, Read more

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Empty envelopes prompt city to re-send construction flier

April 13, 2010

The city mailed hundreds of fliers late last month to residents along Newport Way Northwest to alert them to upcoming construction. Instead, at least a handful of residents received empty envelopes.

The city sent the initial fliers — and empty envelopes — March 30. City Public Works Engineering Director Bob Brock said the city last week sent about 400 additional fliers to addresses along the corridor in order to rectify the problem.

Brock said the problem arose as staffers stuffed batches of envelopes with fliers. The team had not printed all of the fliers at once, because no extras remained after the envelopes had been mailed.

The city plans to update procedures to prevent similar problems in the future, Brock said.

Workers hand-delivered another 200 fliers to residents in the Lakemont Orchard apartment complex.

Councilman Joshua Schaer lives in the Sammamish Hills development along the affected stretch of roadway. The councilman and a handful of neighbors received empty envelopes.

Schaer and a Sammamish Hills neighbor alerted Brock and Mayor Ava Frisinger to the issue April 5. Read more

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City grants support arts programs

April 13, 2010

City dollars will be used to present art classes to teenagers, outdoor concerts and Village Theatre productions.

City Council members last week awarded $128,825 in municipal arts grants — less money to fewer organizations than the city presented last year. The council approved the grants April 5.

The city generates money for the grants though a 5 percent admissions tax on movie theaters and special events. Additional dollars for the program come through a program to steer one-half of 1 percent of the construction budget for city projects to the arts. The ticket tax raised $151,429 last year.

Village Theatre received the largest amount — $47,000 — for professional productions, children’s theater and the Village Originals program to develop new musicals. The nonprofit theater had requested a $60,000 grant.

Michelle Sanders, theater spokeswoman, said the city arts grant helps fund actors, designers and the dozens of behind-the-scenes workers responsible to put on a show. Sanders said the theater often utilizes local talent.

“That funding is critical,” she said.

The grant serves as a critical source because audiences expect high production values from Village Theatre, she said. Read more

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Police step up speed enforcement

April 13, 2010

Issaquah Police and more than 150 law enforcement agencies statewide will crack down on speeders during weekends through May 1.

Police will conduct extra speed patrols on roads throughout the state on Fridays from 11 a.m. – 7 p.m., and Saturdays and Sundays from noon – 8 p.m. The extra patrols will monitor local roads, state highways and interstates.

Issaquah Police Chief Paul Ayers said officers plan to step up speed enforcement throughout the city. The department uses data culled from accident reports and complaints to police to decide where to increase patrol emphasis.

Ayers said officers examine accident data to determine if problems resulted from the engineering of a road or intersection, enforcement or driver education.

Issaquah Police Officer John Lindner tickets a motorist at Front Street and Sunset Way for driving 40 mph in a 25-mph zone April 9, during the first day of a statewide crackdown on speeding. By Greg Farrar

The speed-enforcement campaign — called Slow Down or Pay Up — will be the first statewide anti-speeding campaign rolled out here. Washington Traffic Safety Commission officials said the effort ties into a plan — known as Target Zero — to eliminate traffic deaths and serious injuries on Washington roads by 2030.

“Washington’s commitment to improving traffic safety through Target Zero has produced significant results in the last four years,” Washington Traffic Safety Commission Director Lowell Porter said in a news release. “By identifying the state’s traffic safety priorities and investing our resources based on data, proven strategies, best practices and strong partnerships, we can again this year realize fewer deaths and serious injuries resulting from speeding.”

Almost 1,200 people died in Washington in speeding-related crashes between 2004-08, state data shows.

“Regardless of the issue, police agencies get far better results when we work as a team,” Washington State Patrol Chief John Batiste said in the release. “We routinely create task forces to deal with narcotics, auto theft or predators on the Internet. It’s only natural that we should take a multi-agency approach to the important issue of speeding and the collisions that result.”

Warren Kagarise: 392-6434, ext. 234, or Comment at

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