Mercer Island High School swimmers sink Skyline, 112-74

October 16, 2012

Andi Scarcello, Skyline High School senior, pushes off the bulkhead at the final turn of her winning 100-yard breaststroke race Oct. 9 against Mercer Island in a state-qualifying time of 1 minute, 9.9 seconds. By Greg Farrar

The water at the Julius Boehm Pool bubbled and convulsed Oct. 9 when defending 4A state high school champions, the Skyline Spartans, took on defending 3A state champions, the Mercer Island Islanders. In the end, the Islanders came out on top, defeating the Spartans, 112-74.

“We had a pretty good idea coming into the meet that we had a big chance of losing, but it is such a great time to push ourselves, and it’s good practice,” Skyline senior co-captain Andi Scarcello said. “We knew they have a lot of depth on their team, a lot of fast swimmers … We lost some of our depth last year, too, so we are fighting hard.”

The 100-yard breaststroke started out as a fight for Scarcello as she and the two Mercer Island swimmers on either side of her emerged for their first breath in a three-way tie. By the second turn, she had began building a thin lead, inch by inch ahead of the Islanders. With more than her body length between them, Scarcello finished the race with a two-second lead to take first place.

Her time of 1 minute, 9.9 seconds was faster than the state championship qualifying time, but half a second slower than her season best of 1:09.44, which already secured her a spot at the state tournament.

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Press Editorial

October 16, 2012

Vote to approve marijuana legalization

Despite decades of enforcement and untold millions of dollars, marijuana prohibition does not work.

Initiative 502 possesses the potential to clear the air and allow Washington to legalize small amounts of marijuana for recreational use among adults 21 and older. The ballot measure outlines a sensible plan for the state to legalize, regulate and tax marijuana.

I-502 is not a perfect plan, but the potential benefits outweigh the potential pitfalls.

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Homecoming is about having fun for a cause

October 16, 2012

Editor’s note: This is the Hall Monitor column that should have run in the Oct. 10 issue.

Hall Monitor
Julia Weiner
Issaquah High School

Getting back in the swing of things at school is never easy, but the students of Issaquah High School are sure doing a fantastic job of making it look like it.

This week is one of the most fun weeks of the entire year; it is Homecoming week. Each spirit day is different, but it follows our James Bond-esque theme: “Under Cover, Over Dressed.”

If you walk through the halls of IHS this week do not be surprised if you see students wearing pajamas, camo or ninja attire, or the same thing as a friend, or even students dressed as their favorite celebrities.

We also have night events to look forward to, including one very special one. Some of our awesome special-needs students will play alongside our varsity basketball team on Thursday evening in a game called Project Unify Basketball Game.

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Nominate environmental advocates for Issaquah sustainability honors

October 16, 2012

City leaders put out a call last month for Sustainable Community Award nominees.

The honor is divided into categories for the Ruth Kees Environmental Award for a Sustainable Community and the Sustainable Community Award.

The honor named for Kees is the highest environmental award in Issaquah, and the Sustainable Community Award recognizes significant achievements and positive results of individuals.

The nomination form is available on the municipal website, Send forms to City of Issaquah, Office of Sustainability, P.O. Box 1307, 130 E. Sunset Way, Issaquah, WA 98027, or email them to The nomination deadline is Oct. 19.

Kees award recipients receive $500, funded through a donation from the Kees’ estate, his or her name is engraved on a commemorative plaque, and a tree is planted in the Kees Grove of Trees.

Issaquah apartments sell for $39.5 million

October 16, 2012

Issaquah’s Lakemont Orchard Apartments sold last month for $39.5 million, according to King County property records.

MainStay Investments, a division of New York Life Insurance Co., bought the 17-building complex from Invesco, a Dallas-based investment firm. The complex includes 201 units at 18305 S.E. Newport Way, near the Issaquah-Bellevue city line.

The complex opened in 1992. Invesco bought the apartment complex for about $21 million in 1998, according to county property records.

Skyline High School student spreads ‘be nice’ message after threat

October 16, 2012

The tense days after Issaquah School District administrators closed Skyline High School due to a shooting threat spurred chatter on Facebook and Twitter.

In the aftermath, though, a video from Skyline junior Jake Barokas turned into a bona fide viral sensation.

Inspired by the unity students displayed after administrators closed school in response to the Sept. 19 threat, Barokas created a video based on a simple message: Be nice.

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King County Metro Transit addresses crowding on Issaquah-bound route

October 16, 2012

King County Metro Transit is attempting to ease afternoon crowding on buses from downtown Seattle to the Issaquah Highlands by eliminating a Bellevue stop.

Starting Oct. 15, the transit agency cut a stop at the Eastgate Freeway Station to reduce crowding on the Issaquah-bound Route 218 buses. Metro Transit provides 15 trips on the route during the weekday afternoon commute.

Riders heading to the Eastgate Park & Ride in Bellevue can instead use alternate service on Second Avenue in downtown Seattle.

Metro Transit plans for weekday morning Route 218 buses to Seattle to continue to serve the westbound Eastgate Freeway Station.

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Issaquah police protect and serve — Red Robin burgers

October 16, 2012

Issaquah Deputy Police Chief Steve Cozart serves diners during the Tip-a-Cop fundraiser Oct. 14 at Red Robin.By Jacqueline Kerness/Issaquah Police Department

Issaquah police officers donned aprons to protect and serve — meals, that is — for the annual Tip-a-Cop fundraiser.

Officers served burgers, fries and more to diners Oct. 13 at Red Robin. Tips collected by the Issaquah Police Department benefit Special Olympics Washington.

Issaquah and Snoqualmie officers at the local Red Robin raised about $6,000.

During the event, police officers — alongside Special Olympics athletes and restaurant employees — served patrons and collected donations. Special Olympics Washington provides year-round sports training and athletic competition in Olympic-type sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities.

The fundraiser encompassed local police departments throughout Washington. Snoqualmie officers joined Issaquah officers at Red Robin for the event.

The task is more difficult to some officers than routine traffic stops and crime-fighting tasks.

“I am not a good server,” Issaquah Police Chief Paul Ayers joked. “It is a very hard job, and each time I do it, I have more respect for the people who do it on a regular basis.”

The gig doubles as a community outreach effort for the police.

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Press Editorial

October 16, 2012

John Urquhart for sheriff

King County voters last experienced a contested race for sheriff in 2005.

The race on the ballot next month, between appointed Sheriff Steve Strachan and John Urquhart, a former King County Sheriff’s Office sergeant, offers voters a choice between a pair of capable candidates.

Former Sheriff Sue Rahr stepped down in March, and the King County Council appointed Strachan for the interim. The election is to fill the remainder of Rahr’s term through December 2013.

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Issaquah store is unaffected in Tully’s Coffee tumult

October 16, 2012

Tully’s Coffee filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection Oct. 10, but the chain founded by Issaquah High School alumnus Tom Tully O’Keefe does not plan to close its local store.

The chain announced the filing and the closing of underperforming stores in Seattle, Kirkland and Redmond, plus plans to renegotiate leases for the remaining stores.

Tully’s operates a local store in Pickering Place, 1171 N.W. Sammamish Road.

O’Keefe founded Seattle-based Tully’s in 1992, just as rival Starbucks Coffee started to whet consumers’ appetites for specialty coffee. Tully’s struggled for years to earn a profit and stand out in a crowded coffee marketplace dominated by Seattle-based Starbucks.

O’Keefe stepped down as Tully’s CEO in 2001 and retired as board chairman in June 2010.

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