Harvard grad leaves Microsoft to teach at Issaquah High School

September 11, 2012

Brett Wortzman, to give his students an idea of what it takes to write a program, pretends to be a computer that is being instructed to make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich Sept. 6 at Issaquah High School. By Lillian O’Rorke

A glob of peanut butter piles up on Brett Wortzman’s finger as students in his intro to computer science class shout commands at the man who left his job at Microsoft to become a teacher.

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Inaugural Issaquah Film Festival features classic movie musicals

September 11, 2012

The stars on screen during the inaugural Issaquah Film Festival need no introduction.

Moviegoers can see The Beatles slog through “A Hard Day’s Night” and the fleet-footed Gene Kelly dance across the screen in “An American in Paris” as the festival runs from Sept. 14-16 at Village Theatre’s First Stage Theatre.

The festival lineup focuses on the evolution of musicals on film, from 1933 and “Footlight Parade” to 1980 and the last days of disco in the Village People farce “Can’t Stop the Music.”

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King County Metro Transit route changes impact Issaquah riders

September 11, 2012

King County Metro Transit riders should prepare for major changes in the weeks ahead, as the agency launches a pay-on-entry system and updates several routes.

Transit planners advised thousands of riders to expect changes on bus routes starting Sept. 29, as the agency changes bus stops on dozens of routes, shifts buses to different streets and alters schedules.

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Skyline High School philanthropist reaches out to neighboring students

September 11, 2012

Prabha Dublish, a junior at Skyline High School, presented her new charity club for teenagers Aug. 18 at Sammamish Days. By Sunita Dublish

When Prabha Dublish began thinking about possible projects for her Girl Scouts gold award, she realized that she wanted to start an organization that connects teens through their goodwill, not their high school’s mascot.

“Our three high schools in our area and in Issaquah are all different from each other,” Dublish said.

The junior at Skyline High School is launching a community service club for students across Issaquah and the Sammamish Plateau.

“It’s where people from all of the schools can come together,” she said. “Not only do you get to make new friends but you get to meet people who share your community interests.”

Dublish’s club is called Charity Circle, and while its first official meeting isn’t until later this month, she has been busy putting her plan into action since June. One of her main concerns is concentrating on service, rather than collecting donations.

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Issaquah man dies crossing Central Washington highway

September 11, 2012

Police said a 42-year-old Issaquah man died after a tractor-trailer struck him as he walked across a Central Washington highway Sept. 7.

Washington State Patrol investigators said William A. Hegstrom was crossing state Route 223 at Bailey Avenue in Granger at about 9:05 p.m., when he failed to yield to oncoming traffic, and a southbound Kenwood tractor-trailer struck him.

Investigators said Hegstrom died at the scene.

(Granger is about 30 miles southeast of Yakima in rural Yakima County.)

The tractor-trailer driver, 46-year-old Donald J. McShane, of Zillah, was not injured in the accident.

The state patrol said no charges will be filed in the incident. Investigators said drugs and alcohol were not involved.

Leonard Joseph Deranleau

September 11, 2012

Leonard Deranleau

Leonard Joseph Deranleau, age 91, of Gold Bar (formerly of Issaquah), passed away Sept. 3, 2012, at Valley General Hospital in Monroe.

Leonard was born Feb. 23, 1921, in Medicine Hat, Alberta, Canada. He was raised in Ellensburg, graduating from Ellensburg High School in 1940.

Leonard joined the U.S. Army Air Corp in 1942, serving in combat during World War II. He was discharged after three years of service, during which he was held as a prisoner of war.

Leonard married Amy Patterson, of Ellensburg, in 1946, and fathered five children. He owned the bowling alley in Ellensburg in the late ‘40s.

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State policy change dings county jails, but not Issaquah facility

September 11, 2012

Officials said a recent change in state policy means fewer inmates in King County-run jails — and $9.4 million less for county jails next year due to fewer bookings from the state Department of Corrections.

King County officials said the drop contributes to a projected $13 million shortfall next year in revenues to support operations at the King County Jail in Seattle and the Maleng Regional Justice Center in Kent. The shortfall could lead officials to eliminate 40 or more positions in the proposed 2013 jail budget.

The state corrections agency contracts with the county to house thousands of felons released from prison who then violated their conditions of release. The so-called “DOC violators” go back to jail to await administrative hearings.

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Skyline High School student takes stage in ‘Legally Blonde: The Musical’

September 11, 2012

Brendan Rosell rehearses a dance number from ‘Legally Blonde: The Musical.’ By C. Rupley

Skyline High School junior Brendan Rosell grew up on the theater stage.

From dance classes through Village Theatre’s KIDSTAGE program to starring roles in school plays, Rosell seized any local opportunity to perform for an audience.

“I’ve grown up in the performing arts community,” he said. “My mother was a dancer and performing has always been such an enriching thing for me.”

Now, Rosell, 16, will participate in his biggest performance yet when he joins Seattle Musical Theatre’s production of “Legally Blonde: The Musical” beginning Sept. 14 at Magnuson Park in Seattle.

Based on the 2001 movie starring Reese Witherspoon, “Legally Blonde: The Musical” incorporates singing and dancing to the story about a sorority girl who attends Harvard Law School to try and impress her ex-boyfriend.

The show’s original run on Broadway in 2007 received seven Tony Award nominations.

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Issaquah man injured in Pierce County crash

September 11, 2012

Pierce County firefighters rescued a 76-year-old Issaquah man Sept. 6, after his Chevrolet Suburban plunged into a ravine about eight miles north of Mount Rainier National Park.

Washington State Patrol troopers said motorist Charles Huffaker attempted to turn around near the Fairfax Bridge on state Route 165 at about 1 p.m. He then mistook the gas pedal for the brake and the Suburban slid off the road and about 20 feet down a steep embankment toward the Carbon River. He then attempted to climb back to the road, but lost his footing and fell about 100 feet down the ravine.

Off-duty law enforcement officers noticed the vehicle and stopped to investigate at about 4 p.m.

East Pierce Fire & Rescue crews later freed Huffaker, and medics airlifted him to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle with nonlife-threatening injuries.

King County burn ban continues

September 11, 2012

Continued dry conditions have led the King County fire marshal to extend the countywide burn ban until further notice, officials announced Aug. 31.

National Weather Service meteorologists in Seattle said last month marked the driest August ever at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, with only a trace of rain recorded. (Meteorologists use data collected at the airport for official climate records in the region.)

The fire marshal — and officials in Kitsap, Pierce, Snohomish and Thurston counties — declared a regional burn ban in July. The ban was due to end Sept. 1.

Other burn bans remain in effect, too.

The state Department of Natural Resources set a summer burn ban for Tiger Mountain State Forest and other state lands from July 1 to Sept. 30. Eastside Fire & Rescue imposed a summer burn ban from June 15 to Sept. 30.

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