All aboard

March 4, 2015

Barber Maurice Singer is living his dream of giving haircuts inside the Cut Loose Caboose

Barber Maurice Singer knows Issaquah is a crowded market for stylists. From behind his chair, he can see from each window in his shop a new salon that has popped up over the years, each with at least four operators.

However, Singer also knows his one-man operation has something the others don’t — a caboose.

By Greg Farrar The big red Cut Loose Caboose Barber Shop stands at 240 N.W. Gilman Blvd., on a remaining short piece of track that was part of the old rail bed running next to the Gilman Station clock tower.

By Greg Farrar
The big red Cut Loose Caboose Barber Shop stands at 240 N.W. Gilman Blvd., on a remaining short piece of track that was part of the old rail bed running next to the Gilman Station clock tower.

Built in September 1941, the Cut Loose Caboose actually ran the rails for the Great Northern Railroad, until the bright red rail car was retired in February 1965. It has had many tenants over the years as a repurposed office in the corner lot at 240 N.W. Gilman Blvd., most recently a vitamin supplement shop. Read more

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Mission accomplished

March 4, 2015

Seattle museums highlight innovative contributions from Issaquah councilman

Issaquah City Councilman Tola Marts stands side by side with some of the greatest innovators of his generation.

Not literally. The councilman is not posed shoulder-to-shoulder with Microsoft founder Bill Gates or with Joe Sutter, the chief engineer of the Boeing 747. But examples of his engineering prowess are currently on display at the Museum of History and Industry and the Museum of Flight in Seattle.

By Greg Farrar Tola Marts stands in his flight jacket beside the unmanned Charon low-altitude test vehicle, which he helped complete the design for, on display in the Charles Simonyi Space Gallery at the Museum of Flight in Seattle.

By Greg Farrar
Tola Marts stands in his flight jacket beside the unmanned Charon low-altitude test vehicle, which he helped complete the design for, on display in the Charles Simonyi Space Gallery at the Museum of Flight in Seattle.

The Passive Vaccine Storage Device that Marts helped develop that delivers life-saving serums to battle diseases in Africa will be on display until September as part of the “What’s Next in Global Health” exhibit at the Bezos Center for Innovation at MOHAI, while his Charon low orbital test vehicle is part of the permanent exhibit at the flight museum near Boeing Field. Read more

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Breeding a better bull

March 4, 2015

Raising Black Angus south of Issaquah is a one-man show for Charlie Stewart

Travel just a few miles and a few minutes by car from downtown Issaquah and you quickly can find yourself in the middle of hilly, very quiet and very green open spaces. There is, in fact, little around to remind you that a modern urban city is only a short distance away.

And while rural uses might be slowly disappearing, there are still spots such as Charlie Stewart’s Blue Drifter Ranch, where Black Angus cattle still roam across 26 Issaquah acres tucked near the base of Squak Mountain.

By Greg Farrar Charlie Stewart walks around the fence in May Valley at his Blue Drifter Ranch beside one of his favorite Black Angus cows, Little Orphan Annie, as she gets a drink from her watering trough. He bottle fed her from the moment she was a newborn.

By Greg Farrar
Charlie Stewart walks around the fence in May Valley at his Blue Drifter Ranch beside one of his favorite Black Angus cows, Little Orphan Annie, as she gets a drink from her watering trough. He bottle fed her from the moment she was a newborn.

In the early 1970s, when Stewart purchased those 26 acres, he never intended to end up with one of the city’s last cattle ranches. Read more

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Dream house lives on

March 4, 2015

Debra Smith was dreaming of a house in a good school district, a house she and her family could call home.

Smith and her husband Rick had sold their home in Lake Tapps and were camped in a Bellevue apartment with their high school-aged daughter and son.

Timing was critical. It was summer and school would begin in a few weeks.

“When I walked in the house, I knew this was the one,” Smith said. “This one was unique. It had color and texture.”

Adding to the appeal, the house would be available after Aug. 17.

By Greg Farrar Rick and Debra Smith and Madrona, their Golden Retriever, go for a walk this month at their home south of Issaquah, whose white birch trees have grown considerably since it was one of five homes featured on the Seattle Street of Dreams in 2003.

By Greg Farrar
Rick and Debra Smith and Madrona, their Golden Retriever, go for a walk this month at their home south of Issaquah, whose white birch trees have grown considerably since it was one of five homes featured on the Seattle Street of Dreams in 2003.

That’s when the 2003 Street of Dreams closed. Read more

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Chad Magendanz — a politician with a full plate

March 4, 2015

Chad Magendanz doesn’t have time to eat. The second-term Republican state representative from Issaquah is scurrying around his office like a whirling dervish, having just finished a short video shoot for his 5th District constituents, and he only has a few minutes before the House education committee meets.

So Magendanz, 47, grabs an energy bar from his private stash in the bottom of a file cabinet, eats quickly and starts whirling again. It’s only the 16th day of the 120-day legislative session, but the calendar is deceiving. Magendanz is the primary sponsor of 10 proposed House bills, and is a secondary sponsor on about 100 more. Time is not his friend as he attempts to get things done.

Contributed State Rep. Chad Magendanz (middle) provides feedback during a public meeting of the state House of Representatives’ education committee.

Contributed
State Rep. Chad Magendanz (middle) provides feedback during a public meeting of the state House of Representatives’ education committee.

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Local vintners want you to stop and smell the rosé

March 4, 2015

By Greg Farrar Rod and Dona Ahrens, Issaquah residents and owners of Twin Cedars Winery, stand with cases of wines at the tasting room next to the home on their Tiger Mountain property.

By Greg Farrar
Rod and Dona Ahrens, Issaquah residents and owners of Twin Cedars Winery, stand with cases of wines at the tasting room next to the home on their Tiger Mountain property.

Of two well-known local wineries, one slowly is making its way out of business, while another continues to grow, only recently adding a wine club and still offering a successful tasting room.

But even if the Tiger Mountain and Twin Cedars wineries are headed in two directions, they started out in similar ways.

“I’d always liked wine,” said John Girt, of Tiger Mountain Winery. “But I never had really thought about making it.” Read more

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Health Guide 2014

November 13, 2014

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Fall Home Guide 2014

October 23, 2014

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2014 Salmon Days

October 1, 2014

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Fall Freetime 2014

September 17, 2014

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