Local riders’ motorcycle journey surpasses 17,000 miles

September 25, 2012

Gaila Gutierrez checks out an abandoned vehicle somewhere in Arkansas. By Tad Haas

Just shy of five months into our journey, we’re hunkered down and taking shelter at a cozy B&B in Gunner’s Cove, Newfoundland, keeping an eye on the news of Hurricane Leslie that has Newfoundland on an anxious watch.

Fortunately for us, we’re on the Northern Peninsula with the worst of it hitting the southeastern portion of the island. Can’t say we ever thought we’d be waiting out a hurricane, but then again this is a trip of firsts and this is just another example.

Since we left on April 15, we’ve ridden nearly 17,000 miles zig-zagging through 16 states and five Canadian provinces — Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and Labrador, with Labrador being a significant milestone of our journey as it’s our northernmost destination. Talk about fantastic!

Read more

Skyline High School closes for day due to online shooting threat

September 25, 2012

King County Sheriff Steve Strachan speaks during a news conference Sept. 20 at Sammamish City Hall, across the street from the Skyline High School campus. By Greg Farrar

Skyline High School closed Sept. 20, after a still-unidentified online bulletin board user threatened to unleash a Columbine-style attack and shoot students on campus.

Read more

Skyline alumnus Jeff Skiba wins silver at London Paralympics

September 25, 2012

Jeff Skiba, of Issaquah, clears the high jump bar at 6 feet, 8.3 inches Sept. 8 during the 2012 London Paralympics. By Randy Richardson

In 2002, Jeff Skiba, then a senior at Skyline High School, won the 3A state high jump championship. But it wasn’t just his 6-foot, 10-inch jump that was impressive — Skiba had one of his legs amputated as an infant.

Read more

Spurred by Skyline threat, absences jump 70 percent at other schools

September 25, 2012

Student attendance in the Issaquah School District tumbled Sept. 20, and absences spiked by 70 percent, as police investigated a shooting threat against Skyline High School.

District administrators decided late Sept. 19 to close Skyline the next day in response to the online threat and keep other campuses open. Staffers and students at other schools felt the ripples early.

Read more

University of Washington Husky Marching Band to perform at Issaquah football game

September 25, 2012

J. W. ‘Bill’ Isotalo (left), a 1950 Issaquah High School graduate and Korean War veteran home on leave during Labor Day 1951, and brother Leo Isotalo, beginning his sophomore year at IHS, wait for the school’s band to form up near the old community church prior to the Labor Day parade. Contributed

The Issaquah High School football field will be covered in a sea of purple-and-gold this Friday evening, when more than 200 members of the University of Washington marching band take the field to entertain spectators before the Eagles take on Roosevelt.

The Husky marching band and the UW pom squad will perform a pregame and halftime show at the Sept. 28 contest.

Issaquah High School band director Patrick Holen had been trying to get the band to come to a home game for years and his persistence finally paid off. When the UW band director notified Holen of an open date, he didn’t hesitate to grab the opportunity to host the band.

“I started teaching here in 2001 and ever since I started, I always wanted to get a relationship with university bands across the region,” Holen said. “So, I was very quick to say yes to the band director. Now, it’s a reality and they’re coming out and we’re very excited to have them.”

Issaquah High School must pay for the band’s transportation and arrange to feed the group, but that was no problem, Holen said. With the support of the IHS Associated Student Body, the IHS band and the IHS Booster Club, the visit was quickly financed.

Read more

Online scare, response unfurl on social media

September 25, 2012

The threat against Skyline High School unfolded almost entirely in the social media realm — as students took to Twitter and Facebook to dissect the threat, school district officials used the tools to calm parents’ fears and investigators probed online for clues.

In the late-night hours of Sept. 19, as police and school administrators determined how to address a purported mass shooting on the Skyline campus the next day, students traded information and innuendo on social networking services.

Read more

Uncertainty clouds debate over marijuana legalization measure, Initiative 502

September 25, 2012

Marijuana sits in a jar held by Lydia George in 2011 at GreenLink Collective. File

GreenLink Collective, a medical marijuana operation along Northwest Gilman Boulevard, reshaped attitudes and policies about marijuana in Issaquah last year, as patients and officials engaged in a long debate about access to a drug banned under federal law.

In November, Washington voters could further redraw the battle lines in the marijuana debate. Initiative 502 aims to legalize, regulate and tax marijuana for recreational users. The proposal goes a step beyond a 1998 measure to legalize medical marijuana in Washington and could set a national precedent.

The initiative calls for sales at state-licensed stores of up to 1 ounce of marijuana — grown by state-licensed farmers. Marijuana-related tax revenue could pump as much as $1.9 billion into state coffers, if the federal government does not intervene.

Read more

Spartans thrash Roughriders, 57-14, to remain unbeaten

September 25, 2012

Elliott Welnak (74), Skyline High School junior defensive lineman, is cheered by teammates as he runs his fumble recovery back for a touchdown Sept. 21 against Roosevelt at Memorial Stadium. By Jim Nicholson

Skyline High School opened its league campaign on the road as it bludgeoned the Roosevelt Roughriders, 57-14, in KingCo 4A gridiron action at Memorial Stadium Sept. 21, to move its overall record to 4-0.

Spartans quarterback Max Browne spearheaded the lopsided Skyline conquest as he threw for well over 300 yards and a trio of touchdown strikes to seal the Roughriders’ fate.

The outcome of the contest was never in doubt as Skyline’s offensive machine sprinted out to a 43-7 halftime advantage, bolstered not only via the stalwart passing arm of Browne but also a reliable ground attack.

Cedric Cooper and Jack Valencia culminated long drives in the evening as they scampered and plunged in from 13 yards and 1 yard out, respectively, for a pair of touchdowns on the ground.

Read more

Personal stories define Referendum 74 discussion

September 25, 2012

Dana Alixander (left) and partner Sage Alixander stand on the staircase of their Sammamish home with their California-issued marriage license and photographs chronicling their life together. By Greg Farrar

In the moments before the state Senate voted on a landmark same-sex marriage bill Feb. 1, Dana Alixander joined other supporters in the gallery overlooking the chamber.

“I was there, waiting for history to happen — and terrified that it wouldn’t,” she said in a recent interview.

Legislators, after impassioned debate, passed the bill and sent the measure to the state House of Representatives for consideration. In February, Gov. Chris Gregoire signed the legislation as supporters looked on from the packed State Reception Room at the Capitol.

The measure, Referendum 74, goes before voters on the November ballot. Opponents to the same-sex marriage law gathered enough voter signatures to put the measure before the electorate.

R-74 is the centerpiece in a high-dollar, high-profile contest in the national battle between same-sex proponents and foes.

Alixander headed to Olympia to support marriage rights — a long-running fight for the Sammamish resident and partner of 22 years, Sage. (In 2008, Sage and Dana got married in California before Proposition 8 outlawed same-sex marriages there.)

Read more

Artist spruces up Issaquah Highlands’ Miracle Grow sculpture

September 25, 2012

Seattle artist Leon White stands in the middle of Miracle Grow, his public art sculpture in the Issaquah Highlands. Last week, White spent 30 hours refurbishing the sculpture that was installed in 2005. By Christina Corrales-Toy

Issaquah drivers who frequent Northeast Park Drive may have noticed a colorful change to the public art structure that sits on the median across from the fire station.

Last week, the sculpture’s artist, Leon White, spent about 30 hours over a four-day period sprucing up the sculpture that was installed in 2005.

Miracle Grow consists of a grouping of individual steel sculptures with colored flowers accenting the top of each one.

White said the piece was inspired by the flowers in the garden of his Seattle home.

“When I was doing this series, I just happened to be looking at my garden, which has irises, and looking at the long, thin blades of irises and the green leaves, I thought how cool it would be if I took what is on an inch-scale and made it a foot-scale,” he said.

Read more

« Previous PageNext Page »