Monday is registration deadline for August election

July 16, 2011

NEW — 1 p.m. July 16, 2011

Monday is the deadline to register to vote in the Aug. 16 election.

Voters can check if registration information is current by using Your Voter Guide, calling the Voter Hotline at 206-296-8683 or visiting King County Elections from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. weekdays at 919 S.W. Grady Way, Renton.

If a voter misses the Monday deadline to register online or by mail, he or she can register in person at the elections office through Aug. 8.

If a voter needs to update his or her registration but misses the Monday deadline, he or she should contact the office to update the information for future elections.

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Issaquah man, 61, brings home gold in long jump competition

July 15, 2011

NEW — 5:30 p.m. July 15, 2011

Having qualified over the weekend, on Monday, Issaquah’s Jim Crittenden, 61, made his eighth and final long jump in the track and field finals of the World Master Athletics Championships being held in Sacramento, Calif.

Crittenden said no matter the outcome of the jump, it was his last attempt. He injured a hamstring and was not going to risk further injury by jumping again.

No matter.

At 5.29 meters, or about 17 feet, Crittenden’s leap was enough to beat out a Swedish competitor by one centimeter and earn Crittenden a gold medal in the event.

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‘Deathly Hallows’ casts a spell over Issaquah’s Harry Potter fans

July 14, 2011

Jamie (left) and Lauren Loudon dressed in 'Harry Potter' garb to await the opening of the final film in the series at midnight Friday. By Tom Corrigan

NEW — 7 p.m. July 14, 2011

“It’s the end of our childhood,” said Rebecca Solem, 18, one of about 50 or so Harry Potter fans lined up outside the Regal Issaquah Nine Theatre on Thursday.

With a fancy hat and a shawl, Solem was one of many who showed up in costume for the occasion, the release of the last film of the “Harry Potter” movie franchise.

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Swedish/Issaquah open houses / July 7 and 9, 2011

July 13, 2011

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Girl, 12, receives suspended sentence for Facebook cyberstalking

July 13, 2011

NEW — 11:35 a.m. July 13, 2011

A 12-year-old Issaquah girl received a six-month suspended sentence for cyberstalking and first-degree computer trespassing charges Wednesday for posting explicit messages and photos on a classmate’s Facebook page.

The sentence also includes 20 hours of community service, and adult supervision for all computer access. The court also ordered the girl to write a letter of apology to the girl targeted in the incident.

If she completes all conditions of the deferred sentence and stays out of trouble for six months, the court intends to dismiss the charges.

Prosecutors said the girl and a classmate, 11, posted explicit photos and sent solicitations for sex from the account for Issaquah Middle School student Leslie Cote. The incident attracted national attention to cyberbullying, and led to a “Today” appearance for Leslie.

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Swedish/Issaquah construction contractor is patient No. 1

July 12, 2011

For inaugural surgery, hospital prepares to rebuild builder

Swedish/Issaquah is projected to handle about 100,000 patient visits next year.

Wes Hagen, senior construction superintendent for Sellen Construction Co. on the Swedish/Issaquah project, is in line to become the hospital’s first surgical patient July 14 for a knee operation. By Greg Farrar

Wes Hagen is scheduled as patient No. 1 in the operating room.

The senior construction superintendent and vice president for Sellen Construction Co. who led construction on high-tech operating rooms is in line to be the inaugural surgical patient at the hospital July 14.

Since construction started in summer 2009, Hagen logged every workday on the hospital campus as the site morphed from a dirt plateau to a steel skeleton to a sleek structure sheathed in glass.

Now, he needs surgery to repair a tear in the meniscus inside his left knee, a quick outpatient procedure.

“Building a hospital — it’s an honor and a privilege for me to be able to do it, and just turn something like this over to the community,” he said. “We build office buildings and everything, but you know, you can’t give a better gift than something like this. It’s outstanding.”

The idea to use Hagen as the inaugural surgical patient formed after his injury occurred in November. Hagen asked to undergo surgery at Swedish/Issaquah on opening day.

“Why not? I built it. I’ve got faith in it. I’ll just see if I can make arrangements to have the surgery done the day they open,” he recalled.

Dr. Mike Purdon, a general practitioner and Issaquah resident, said Hagen mentioned the joint problem at a recent appointment.

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Lakeside prepares for home-stretch run to playoffs

July 12, 2011

Andrew Kemmerer swings at a pitch during the third inning July 8 against Bankers Baseball Club. He had two hits, including a home run, and drove in three runs July 7 against the Twin City Titans. By Greg Farrar

The Lakeside Recovery Senior American Legion baseball team enters an important stretch this week with hopes of getting healthier and gaining momentum for the post-season.

Thus far, it has been a season when Lakeside Recovery has shown promise at times and has also shown its share of futility.

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Issaquah company cooks up Bite of Seattle

July 12, 2011

The birthday celebration for the Bite of Seattle is super-sized to reflect a festival much, much larger than the gathering around Green Lake 30 summers ago.

So, for hungry festivalgoers trekking to Seattle Center on opening day July 15, organizers plan to hand out 1,000 cupcakes.

In a downtown Issaquah office building along East Sunset Way, the company behind the largest food festival in the Puget Sound region is planning celebratory cupcakes and other touches to mark the 30th event.

The company, Festivals Inc., settled in Issaquah in January 2009 after stints in Mercer Island and Bellevue.

Festivals Inc. also produces Taste of Tacoma each June. In the same building, sister company Lifestyle Events Inc. produces Coffee Fest, a popular trade show for the coffee industry.

Jody May, Festivals Inc. president, said the original concept for a picnic in the park evolved into a celebration encompassing more than 60 restaurants and, in a good year, more than 400,000 attendees.

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Record set on 10-mile Cougar Mountain run

July 12, 2011

Seattle’s John Berta set a new course record on the 10-mile Cougar Mountain Trail Run July 9, completing the race in 1 hour and 15.41 seconds.

Berta, 41, handily broke the previous record of 1:17.28, set by Matt Messner in 2006.

Berta said a group of frontrunners pulled away at the beginning of the race, gaining ground as they ascended the first climb. However, he said he was able to make up ground on the down hills and eventually win the race.

John Berta rounds the final curve out of the woods for the 10-mile course victory July 9 with a time of 1:15.41 in the Cougar Mountain Trail Run series. By Greg Farrar

“A couple guys were real good running through the trees on the flats, but once they hit the downhills on the switchbacks, if you can do those real fast and in control, you can put some real time on them,” Berta said.

Three other runners also broke Messner’s record. Simon Knellwolf, Edward Strickler and Liberty High School coach Michael Smith finished after Berta with times of 1:16.05, 1:17.05 and 1:17.15, respectively.

“It’s organized in a great way,” Knellwolf, 29, said about the course.

Knellwolf, who hails from Switzerland, is living in Redmond for the summer, working for Microsoft Research.

“Usually, I’m running in Switzerland,” he said. “I saw the website for the Seattle runner’s club, and saw that they did the competition, and I’m here. I underestimated the hills, but I liked it a lot.”

Trisha Steidl, of Seattle, was the first woman to cross the finish line, recording a time of 1:33.28.

Steidl, 34, said she was recovering from a calf injury that prevented her from running on slopes for several months. She said the hills were rough, but she said her calf was up to the challenge.

“You can’t ever be unhappy with a win,” she said with a laugh. “When I started, I kind of started out a little slower and tried to be smart so I could be stronger later in the race, because I know the hills are later in the race. But I also knew I had to take advantage of the first part being fairly flat. I had to push that a little bit.”

The youngest of the 168 participants were 14-year-olds Andrew Eason and Ellie Hendrickson, who finished 46th and 51st with times of 1:42.21 and 1:43.23, respectively.

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22,000 people turn out for Swedish/Issaquah public unveiling

July 12, 2011

The da Vinci Surgical System robot captivates visitors on guided tours July 9 during the Swedish/Issaquah open house celebration. By Greg Farrar

Hospital executives and designers spared no expense to create a Swedish Medical Center campus to connect to the surrounding community, and curious residents across the Eastside embraced Swedish/Issaquah on July 9, as the $365 million hospital opened for a whirlwind of public tours.

Organizers estimate 22,000 people descended on the 18-acre campus during the daylong event. The hospital’s opening celebration served as the centerpiece at Highlands Day, a neighborhood festival in the Issaquah Highlands.

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