July 3, 2012
The paper or plastic battle isn’t over yet
Ahh, plastic bags. I don’t know of a time in my seven years here when there has been so much controversy. And most of it after a decision.
(There was that brouhaha in December 2009 over McNugget, the rooster that lives on Front Street across from Darigold, which brought so many comments I thought they would never end! I just checked our website and the main story brought 134 comments there alone.)
As for the bags, the comments and letters are still coming in. The most astonishing thing to me is the people who say they’re going to drive to other cities to shop. Seriously? Take the gas guzzling SUV to another city to get plastic bags and avoid the 5-cent paper bag fee? That just sounds ludicrous. How many bags of groceries do people get per trip?
June 12, 2012
Motorists should prepare for a downtown Issaquah road closure June 17 during the Fenders on Front Street Car Show and Cruise.
Organizers plan to close Front Street North from Gilman Boulevard to Sunset Way between 6 a.m. and 4 p.m. for the car show, a Mountains to Sound Greenway Days event.
Registration starts at 6 a.m. at Triple XXX Rootbeer Drive-in, 98 N.E. Gilman Blvd. Vehicles start to park at Triple XXX Rootbeer Drive-in, and then park along the Staples parking lot to Front Street North and then along Front Street North toward Sunset Way as the need for space increases.
The car judging starts at about 11 a.m., with trophies presented at the historic Hailstone Feed Store, 232 Front St. N., at 2 p.m.
Following the trophy presentations, at 3 p.m., car show participants gather on Front Street North and cruise to Sunset Way, and then to Newport Way and along Gilman Boulevard to the Triple XXX Rootbeer Drive-in.
October 11, 2011
One of the staples of the Christian Science religion is its reading room.
Usually, it’s a quiet atmosphere that lends to the pursuit of thoughtful prayer, studying Bible lessons, reading Christian literature or investigating the teachings of Mary Baker Eddy, the founder of the Church of Christ, Scientist.
With the church located on 238th Way Southeast, leaders have long had to rent out space in Issaquah for a reading room to serve its congregation of fewer than 200.
However, Issaquah’s last reading room didn’t have an ideal location for its intended pursuits in the Brandt Building on Front Street, not with its neighbor — The Kaleidoscope School of Music — pursuing its intended purpose.
October 11, 2011
When my wife and I vacationed in Venice, Italy, one of the best meals we had the entire trip came via recommendation of a local resident.
The bed-and-breakfast owner suggested a little family-run restaurant, way off the beaten path away from the usual touristy spots. The food at this hole in the wall was exquisite and memorable for its simplistic, yet bold flavors.
Well, Issaquah now boasts its own hole in the wall, family run ristorante Italiano — Montalcino Ristorante Italiano.
Located on Northwest Alder Place, a block off the beaten path of Front Street, Montalcino brought back memories of Venice with its intimate, rustic interior.
September 27, 2011
Investigation continues after police kill gunman at Issaquah school
Issaquah police stopped a gunman in a fusillade of gunfire Sept. 24, after he led officers on a circuitous chase through downtown Issaquah, prompting residents to scramble for cover inside homes, and athletes and spectators at a youth football game to duck beneath bleachers for protection.
Officers fatally shot the 51-year-old Maple Valley man on the Clark Elementary School campus, not far from a youth football game on nearby Issaquah High School fields.
September 27, 2011
It can’t happen here; yes, it can
“This kind of thing doesn’t happen here,” people always say when some tragedy, especially one involving violence, occurs in a community.
I heard the phrase again and again Sept. 24, because that kind of thing doesn’t happen in Issaquah either. Until it did.
I was shopping in Maple Valley when a friend called to tell me there was a gunman on the loose in Issaquah and she couldn’t get into town because of all of the police officers blocking the streets.
Despite the fact that her voice was crystal clear, I immediately said, “What? Can you say that again?”
Same thing — gunman, downtown Issaquah, cops everywhere with guns drawn, helicopter flying overhead. She then asked if I was OK. (I live downtown.) I felt stunned for a moment. Were my pets OK at home? Could I even get there? Did I want to go there? How would I know if the gunman was inside the house or hiding on the property?
September 13, 2011
Downtown Issaquah isn’t necessarily related to Jane Garrison’s duties as a docent for the Issaquah History Museums at the Gilman Town Hall Museum.
Still, it seems appropriate that Garrison can speak happily and fluently about the background of various downtown buildings and landmarks.
“I love downtown Issaquah. I love the buildings,” said the talkative and friendly Garrison, 70.
With an architectural landscaping business of her own on Front Street for roughly 25 years, Garrison said that after she retired she got to know and truly appreciate the feel of downtown Issaquah. Always having been an artist, one of her side projects included pen-and-pencil drawing of various downtown landmarks.
The spots she sketched include Triple XXX Rootbeer Drive-in, the Eagles Hall and the salmon hatchery. Garrison initially made the drawings strictly for her own enjoyment. But now she has decided to use the sketches to create some very unique and localized greeting cards.
A portion of the proceeds from sales of the cards will benefit the history museums. The cards are blank inside, but one of Garrison’s 12 drawings appears on the front along with a history capsule about the location depicted.
August 23, 2011
The legal challenge to city rules for leafleting at the Salmon Days Festival is focusing attention on unfettered freedom of expression in public places.
The lawsuit presents hurdles to the plaintiff, a Snoqualmie man, and the city, constitutional scholars said. The case is rooted in past court decisions about limits on freedom of expression and the steps governments can enact to limit such acts.
In a lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court in Seattle, Paul Ascherl said Issaquah police officers threatened to arrest him for handing out Christian literature in places outside the pair of downtown “expression areas” on festival grounds last year. Ascherl relocated to the “expression areas” after police and a festival official intervened.
“The suit presents some cognizable First Amendment arguments,” said David Hudson, a First Amendment scholar at the First Amendment Center in Nashville, Tenn.
Salmon Days featured “expression areas” near downtown festival entrances last year. The areas hosted local political parties and candidates for office.
August 9, 2011
Emergency crews converged on westbound Interstate 90 between Front Street and state Route 900 just after 8 a.m. Aug. 5 after a tractor-trailer toppled across three lanes, snarling the morning commute.
The tractor-trailer was heading westbound in the center lane when the driver attempted to make a lane change to the right, Washington State Patrol Trooper Julie Startup said. In the process, the truck bumped into a car in the adjacent lane.
The truck driver, realizing the rig had bumped the car, attempted to correct to avoid a more serious collision, but lost control and ended up in a brush-filled ditch on the left road shoulder.
Then, as the truck driver attempted to pull out of the ditch, the rig flipped and landed on its side, blocking most of the westbound interstate.
Medics transported the driver of the car, a 29-year-old Sumner man, to Overlake Hospital Medical Center in Bellevue for treatment of minor injuries. The truck driver, a 30-year-old Auburn man, escaped uninjured.
The state patrol’s commercial vehicle inspectors plan to inspect the tractor-trailer as a standard part of the investigation. Startup said the tractor-trailer driver is unlikely to face charges in the incident.
Crews managed to right the toppled rig after 8:30 a.m. and reopened lanes to traffic at about 9:15 a.m. Traffic backed up for two and a half miles as state troopers closed the lanes to investigate and clean up. Startup said the toppled truck had been hauling hay.
“Luckily, the hay stayed inside the vehicle today,” she added. “That could be a mess. But hay is much easier to clean up than a load of marbles.”
July 26, 2011
Rachel Beckwith, a 9-year-old Issaquah girl injured in a 14-vehicle pileup in Bellevue early last week, died July 23 from injuries sustained in the crash.
Rachel and a 2-year-old sister rode in a Lexus sedan driven by the girls’ mother, Samantha Paul, as a tractor-trailer jackknifed into a loaded logging truck and spurred the chain-reaction crash.
Medics transported seven people, including a handful of Issaquah residents, to area hospitals in the aftermath.
Only Rachel sustained life-threatening injuries, and responders rushed the girl to Harborview Medical Center.
Just before 8 a.m. July 20, as traffic slowed due to congestion near the Interstate 405 interchange at 133rd Avenue Southeast, authorities said a tractor-trailer jackknifed into a logging truck in the adjacent lane.
“For whatever reason, whether the semi truck was going too fast, wasn’t paying attention or a combination of the two, for the conditions, he didn’t seem to see that traffic had stopped until the last second,” said Sgt. Keith Trowbridge, a Washington State Patrol spokesman. “At that point, he tried to put the brakes on, but he jackknifed and went into the log truck.”
The impact dislodged the rear axle of the logging truck and sent the piece hurtling into traffic.