Downturn limits city dollars for tourism promotion

November 16, 2010

City leaders plan to use limited tourism dollars to help Village Theatre reach a broader audience, promote the Salmon Days Festival throughout the state and defray costs for the Fenders on Front Street car show.

The city Lodging Tax Advisory Committee has recommended $95,000 for a half-dozen projects. The bulk — $68,000 — has been earmarked for the Visitor Information Center operated by the Issaquah Chamber of Commerce. Read more

Tell us what you’re thankful for on Thanksgiving

November 16, 2010

Thanksgiving arrives soon and beyond the turkey and the trimmings, the holiday has a special meaning.

The Issaquah Press seeks readers of all ages for a pre-Thanksgiving piece about what has them feeling thankful. In a short note — 25 to 50 words — tell us what you’re thankful for. Feel free to be sentimental or silly. The best responses will be included in a Thanksgiving feature in the Nov. 24 issue.

Readers can also include a photo of themselves (either alone or alongside what they’re thankful for) to be considered for publication.

Send information and photos via e-mail to, or contact us on Twitter @issaquahpress.

Issaquah councilman shapes bold reform plan for Metro Transit

November 16, 2010

Report urges transit agency to rethink  bus routes

King County Metro Transit should rethink how the public transit agency transports riders and maps bus routes, a regional transit task force has recommended.

The recommendations in the Regional Transit Task Force report represent a potential roadmap to long-standing differences related to Metro bus service. Read more

School district hires online coordinator

November 16, 2010

With more and more students taking online classes, the Issaquah School District has hired an online coordinator to help students manage their questions and schedules.

The new online learning coordinator, Susan Canaga, will serve as a liaison between students and the companies or districts offering online learning. Read more

Ceremony recognizes local veterans’ service

November 16, 2010

Never forget.

The theme was reiterated throughout the annual Veterans Day ceremony at City Hall Nov. 11, hosted by the Issaquah Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 3436.

Dave Waggoner, the master of ceremonies, began by asking the 20 or so veterans present, scattered about the filled-to-capacity Eagle Room, to stand and be recognized for their service to their country, from World War II to present day.

Tribute was given to two Issaquah residents who paid the ultimate sacrifice in service to their country. Marilyn Batura fought back tears sharing her brother George Larsen’s tale. His life as a goat herder in Issaquah on the family farm was cut short, when shortly after unselfishly joining the Army at the onset of World War II, he was one of thousands killed in the battle to retake Okinawa.

His name appears on the monument with 18 other names at Issaquah’s Veterans Memorial Field. Along with Emmett “Skip” McDonald, who was memorialized at the ceremony by classmate Linda Hjelm.

“You can walk past that memorial and see those 19 names, yet not know any of their stories,” she said.

Read more

Tiger Mountain students wait for kitchen overhaul

November 16, 2010

Juniors Danielle Guthrie (left) and Kaylene Benak use a portable stove to melt chocolate chips in their culinary arts class at Tiger Mountain Community High School. By Laura Geggel

It all started when the water heater broke.

The 19-year old water heater, concealed in a kitchen cabinet at Tiger Mountain Community High School, had leaked water before its demise on Oct. 27, 2009. When Issaquah School District maintenance came to inspect it, workers found the leaking water had led to black mold contamination under the kitchen floor and in the walls.

Insurance money paid for most repairs, including the mold remediation and removing the damaged floor and walls by Dec. 14, 2009, Steve Crawford, Issaquah School District director of capital projects, said.

The kitchen had a new water heater by Feb. 10, 2010, and initially, Crawford planned to simply replace it with an identical new one. But, Susan Canaga, then director of career and counseling services, saw a silver lining with the kitchen remodel.

“We thought, ‘Well, wait a minute, because we’ve been trying to get a culinary arts program in here for four years,’” Tiger Mountain Principal Ed Marcoe said.

Marcoe had planned to put the culinary program in two unused classrooms, but he nixed that idea when the Academy for Community Transition — serving special-needs students ages 18 to 21 — moved from Issaquah High School to Tiger Mountain two years ago.

Read more

Skyline Spartans repeat state swim title

November 16, 2010

The Skyline High School girls swim team hoists its state 4A team championship trophy for the second consecutive year. By Greg Farrar

Susan Simpkins is well acquainted with the massive Class 4A girls swimming state championship trophy.

Read more

Conservation leaders honor King County Councilwoman Kathy Lambert

November 16, 2010

King County Councilwoman Kathy Lambert (left) receives a Rock Award for conservation efforts from King Conservation District Board President Bill Knutsen and King Conservation District Executive Director Sara Hemphill. Contributed

Conservation leaders recognized King County Councilwoman Kathy Lambert last month as a champion of programs to preserve agriculture and forestry in rural areas.

King Conservation District officials named Lambert a Conservation Leader for supporting voluntary land stewardship programs. The councilwoman received a Rock Award — from a program to honor people, programs and cities for service and leadership in conservation efforts during the previous year.

“Councilmember Lambert has been a champion for King CD and vital to our success,” conservation district Chairman Bill Knutsen said in a statement. “She understands the work of the district and the importance of getting conservation on the ground in a way that’s manageable and affordable for the landowner.”

Lambert represents Issaquah, Sammamish and unincorporated King County on the nine-member council. The district encompasses a rich agricultural heritage.

The conservation district highlighted Lambert, because she championed preservation of funding for the county Agricultural Drainage Assistance Program — a program designed to help farmers preserve water quality and protect fish. The councilwoman is also in the midst of developing a universal permit to allow farmers to conduct regular maintenance on drainage ditches.

Read more

Parks & Recreation Department hosts final parks open house

November 16, 2010

The city offers residents a last chance to help shape the future of downtown Issaquah parks Nov. 18.

The meeting to plan the future of Tollë Anderson, Cybil-Madeline and Issaquah Creek parks is scheduled for 7 p.m. Nov. 18 at Pickering Barn, 1730 10th Ave. N.W. Read more

Crafters sought for history museums’ open house

November 16, 2010

The Issaquah History Museums’ annual open house is from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Dec. 4 at the Train Depot Freight Room.

There are 10 spaces set aside for local crafters to show their items at the event. Each crafter has a six-foot space, tables are provided and no commissions are charged. The fee is $35.

All proceeds will benefit the continued success of the museums. Call 392-0500 to reserve your table.

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