Editorial — Turns out you can fight City Hall after all

April 15, 2014

Turns out you can fight City Hall after all

While it may be true that you can’t fight City Hall and win, you might be able to win it over.

So, it seems, is the case with Save Squak in its battle over Squak Mountain land that was set for logging a little more than a year ago.

In January 2013, 15-year Squak Mountain resident Helen Farrington was concerned that clear-cutting 216 acres of forest could impact a fork of May Creek. Salmon had just returned to the area, and residents feared that with logging, they would be gone again.

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Issaquah Alps club announces scholarship topics

April 15, 2014

The Issaquah Alps Trails Club has announced the topics for its annual Bill Longwell Memorial Scholarship.

Longwell was a longtime club member who taught English at Hazen High School for many years. He was an avid hiker and trail builder who, often with the help of his students, was responsible for building and maintaining many of the trails on Tiger and Squak mountains.

Each year since his death in 2007, the Issaquah Alps Trails Club has offered a $1,000 scholarship available to graduating seniors at Issaquah, Liberty, Skyline and Hazen high schools. Often, runners-up qualify for smaller awards.

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Celebration is May 10 for Squak Mountain land

April 8, 2014

A public celebration is set to commemorate preservation of 226 acres of high-quality forestland in the Issaquah Alps — the result of a partnership between King County and The Trust for Public Land.

The acquisition adds to King County’s Cougar-Squak Corridor parkland. The area was set for logging more than a year ago.

“Our partnership to protect Squak Mountain’s irreplaceable fish and wildlife habitat is cause for celebration,” King County Executive Dow Constantine said in a news release. “I want to thank The Trust for Public Land and the people of King County on behalf of generations who will enjoy hiking, viewing wildlife and other recreation in this forest.”

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New art installation recalls Cougar Mountain’s coal mining past

March 11, 2014

By Kate Smigiel  Artist Hans Baumann spreads bio-carbon, a black charcoal often used as a fertilizer for agricultural crops and ornamental plants such as orchids, as part of a large-scale art installation on Cougar Mountain.

By Kate Smigiel
Artist Hans Baumann spreads bio-carbon, a black charcoal often used as a fertilizer for agricultural crops and ornamental plants such as orchids, as part of a large-scale art installation on Cougar Mountain.

Cougar Mountain Regional Wildland Park is now home to a unique land-art installation that pays tribute to the area’s coal mining past.

The project, entitled “Black Forest (29,930,000 tons),” is spread across the forest floor in the form of nearly 50,000 pounds of biochar, environmentally friendly charcoal that appears similar to the coal that was once mined from the mountain.

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Fond farewell

January 14, 2014

Ava Frisinger reflects on her 16 years as mayor

These days, Ava Frisinger, when not volunteering her time on various councils and boards, is spending a lot of catch-up time with her grandchildren. She won’t say which role is harder, being Issaquah’s longest-serving mayor or that of grandmother.

By Greg Farrar New Mayor Fred Butler (left) presents Ava Frisinger with a gift from city employees as her husband Bill Frisinger looks on.

By Greg Farrar
New Mayor Fred Butler (left) presents Ava Frisinger with a gift from city employees as her husband Bill Frisinger looks on.

“But being a grandmother is a very satisfying job, rewarding as well,” Frisinger said. “It’s neat to watch kids grow, encourage them to do what it is that they want to do.”

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Issaquah Alps Trails Club announces scholarship winners

May 28, 2013

The Issaquah Alps Trails Club has announced the winners of its annual Bill Longwell Memorial Scholarship.

First place for $1,000 has been awarded to Joseph Domek, of Issaquah High School. Domek has a grade point average of 3.91, and is active in Issaquah-Sammamish Young Life, Relay for Life and Running Start classes. He plays football, wrestles, runs track and is college bound to Pacific Lutheran University.

Second place for $500 has been awarded to Jennifer Duff, also of Issaquah High School. Duff has a 3.93 grade point average, is treasurer of the Internet Service Club, is active in the Multicultural Club and Honor Society, and runs track. She plans to attend Pepperdine University next year.

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Scholarship topics announced

April 9, 2013

The Issaquah Alps Trails Club has announced the topics for its annual Bill Longwell Memorial Scholarship.

Longwell was a longtime club member who taught English at Hazen High School for many years. He was an avid hiker and trail builder who, often with the help of his students, was responsible for building and maintaining many of the trails on Tiger and Squak mountains.

Read more

Issaquah Alps Trails Club seeks grand essay in scholarship contest

April 2, 2013

Graduating seniors will get a chance to win the Bill Longwell Memorial Scholarship again this year by describing their love of the Issaquah Alps .

Begun in 2010, the Issaquah Alps Trails Club celebrates the life of Longwell, an avid hiker and mountain biker who also taught English for many years at Hazen High School, with a $1,000 prize given to the best written essay on a specific topic.

Issaquah, Liberty, Skyline and Hazen high school seniors can submit their 700-1,000 word essays to school counselors by May 1. Runners-up might qualify for lesser awards.

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Issaquah City Council revisits central plan design, development standards

February 26, 2013

The Issaquah City Council moved one step closer to reaching a consensus concerning the Central Issaquah Plan’s development and design standards at a Feb. 20 work session to identify and discuss any remaining issues with the standards.

In December, the council adopted the Central Issaquah Plan, a long-term vision for the city that would transform it into a dense urban core complete with 125-foot tall buildings.

The council delayed adoption of the development and design standards at the time, preferring instead to put them through a more thorough review process.

The development and design standards consist of rules for buildings, community spaces, landscaping, signage and more. It is the only piece of Central Issaquah Plan legislation that has yet to be approved.

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Squak Mountain logging plan concerns neighbors

February 12, 2013

Proposal could lead to clear cut timber operation

High on Squak Mountain, pink plastic strips tied to trees mark 216 acres of forest as a timber harvest area.

Downhill, 15-year resident Helen Farrington is concerned about how a plan to clear cut the forest above could impact a fork of May Creek.

In September, after a long permitting process and almost $100,000 out of pocket, the Farringtons replaced a crumbling culvert with a passage easier for fish to cross.

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