Sammamish church eyes welcoming Tent City 4

October 2, 2013

NEW — 10:45 a.m. Oct. 2, 2013

Tent City 4 might move to Sammamish.

Members of the Mary, Queen of Peace Catholic Church Council are meeting tonight to decide if they want to extend an invitation to the group. If they do, the encampment could be in Sammamish a little more than two weeks later.

Organizers from the Tent City community received a shock late this summer when Bellevue, whose turn had arrived to host the traveling tented encampment, denied Tent City 4’s return.

“There are now two campsites on the Eastside,” Elisabeth Maupin, coordinator of the Issaquah Sammamish Interfaith Coalition, said, explaining the current Bellevue situation. “The other campsite had already filed for a permit to stay in Bellevue. And because Bellevue has a codicil that only allows for one campsite, the other camp was rejected.”

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Halloween Kidtacular Carnival / Oct. 19, 2012

October 23, 2012

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Celebrate Independence Day in Issaquah with parade

June 26, 2012

Fireworks are banned in Issaquah and surrounding areas, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of ways to celebrate Independence Day.

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Local volunteer receives national honor for helping seniors

September 27, 2011

Janell Faletto

Janell Faletto wasn’t quite sure why she responded to a volunteer opportunity listing in her church bulletin in 2003, but she thought it would be nice to work with the elderly.

The retired elementary school teacher had worked with children for 31 years.

“I thought working with elders would be a nice change from working with children,” she said.

So she signed up as a volunteer for Faith in Action, a Sammamish organization that helps independent seniors with everyday things. Since then, Faletto, who also volunteers with other local organizations and Mary, Queen of Peace Catholic Church, has given more than 1,000 hours and countless miles driven in her car to take needy seniors to medical appointments, do household chores or pick up groceries.

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Fireworks, parade await Issaquah on Independence Day

June 28, 2011

On Independence Day, Issaquah residents can head downtown for the annual parade, churn butter at the Train Depot Museum, participate in a slug race or drive to Sammamish for the annual plateau celebration.

Practice fireworks safety

King County fire officials remind Independence Day revelers to use caution if they plan to discharge fireworks to celebrate the holiday.

Use only approved, legal and common fireworks from reliable state- and King County Fire Marshal-licensed retailers.

Remember: If a firework has a stick or fins, and if it goes up or if it blows up, it is illegal in Washington.

Celebrants should always have a responsible adult light all fireworks, and avoid aerial fireworks. Use eye protection, too.

Have a garden hose or a fire extinguisher handy during fireworks-related activities.

Use fireworks under outdoor conditions only, away from buildings, wood-shingled houses, trees and dry fields.

Light one item at a time, move away quickly and keep a safe distance away. Dispose of used fireworks by first soaking them in water.

If a firework does not light or discharge, adults should wait at least five minutes before approaching the device.

Fireworks regulations

In Issaquah, discharging fireworks is banned on Independence Day and the rest of the year. Usually, Issaquah Police Department officers issue a verbal warning for fireworks and confiscate them for a first offense. If police catch revelers putting off fireworks again, a citation is issued.

Residents in unincorporated King County communities, such as Klahanie and Mirrormont, face looser rules, but some restrictions apply:

Fireworks can be discharged only from 9 a.m. to midnight. July 4.

Fireworks sales remain legal only between 9 a.m. and 11 p.m. through July 4, and no sales can occur after Independence Day.

People must be at least 16 and present a form of photo identification in order to purchase fireworks.

The annual Down Home Fourth of July begins with the Kids, Pets N’ Pride Parade at 11 a.m. at Rainier Boulevard North, at the intersection of Northwest Dogwood Street and Front Street North.

The parade is free, but participants must fill out a form before they begin marching. Paradegoers can find the form online, or in The Issaquah Press. Registrants also can sign up the day of the event at 10 a.m. July 4 at 425 Rainier Blvd. N.

After the parade, families can plays games at Veterans’ Memorial Field and learn about Issaquah’s history from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Issaquah Train Depot Museum’s Heritage Day celebration, 50 Rainier Boulevard N.

On Veterans’ Memorial Field, children can enter potato sack, slug and three-legged races, go for pony rides and have their faces painted.

At the depot, children can get free passports and collect stamps as they visit different stations to do old-time activities, including splitting a cedar shingle, using homemade soap to scrub clothes, dressing in historic garb and whipping cream into butter. Other activities include operating an historic pump car and trying out an historic stump puller.

“I’m always a big fan of the butter, because nothing tastes quite so good as butter that you made yourself,” Museums Director Erica Maniez said.

The depot still needs volunteers. Call 392-3500 or email to learn more.

Once the sky darkens, Issaquah residents can flock to Sammamish for the annual fireworks show and carnival-style gathering from 7-10 p.m. at the Sammamish Commons, near City Hall at 801 228th Ave S.E., Sammamish.

The 10 p.m. fireworks show should last between 20 and 25 minutes.

“Hopefully this year there’ll be sun,” said Joanna Puthoff, Sammamish’s facility coordinator. “As rainy as it was last year, we actually had a good amount of people show up. The plaza still ended up packed.”

The children’s play area will feature pay-to-play bouncy toys, carnival-style games and activities put on by Skyhawks Sports Camps. The celebration is located on the far end of the lower commons, but is accessible via 222nd Place Southeast.

In addition to the main fireworks event, dozens of vendors will offer food and goodies, like ice cream, elephant ears, burgers, hot dogs, kettle corn, Thai food, barbecue and smoothies. The stage on the plaza will feature music from The Pop Offs from 6-8 p.m. and Dance Factory from 8-10:15 p.m.

Parking is free at Eastside Catholic School, Eastlake High School, Discovery Elementary School, Sammamish Highlands Shopping Center, Pine Lake Park and the Sammamish Park & Ride. Parking closer to Sammamish Commons is $5 at Mary, Queen of Peace Catholic Church, Skyline High School and Sammamish Hills Lutheran Church.

“Come out and be with the people you live around,” Puthoff said. “Out of all the different shows I’ve seen in my life … it’s a great show.”

Laura Geggel: 392-6434, ext. 241, or Chris Huber: 392-6434, ext. 242, or Comment at

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Who’s News

May 3, 2011

Washington Federal names locals to Seattle office

Washington Federal has named Lance J. Semer, of Issaquah, as information security officer and Denis Malone, of Sammamish, as senior product and business analyst at the Seattle corporate office.

Semer has more than 20 years of banking experience. He is a member of the International Information Systems Security Certifications Consortium and the Information Systems Audit and Control Association, as well as the Institute of Internal Auditors.

Semer is a volunteer for United Way and is a published author with articles in the IIA’s Internal Auditor’s Magazine. In his free time, Semer enjoys camping, cooking, hiking and traveling.

Malone has 22 years of banking experience. Graduating with a degree in telecommunications from Pennsylvania State University, he is involved with the youth ministry at Mary, Queen of Peace Catholic Church and the Ignite the Light contemporary Christian band and choir.

In his free time, Malone enjoys hiking, kayaking and camping.

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Many faiths, one community

February 15, 2011

Issaquah is a melting pot of major religions from across the globe

Twelve families celebrate Hanukkah at the Donna and Stuart Rosove home in Lakemont, as they light menorahs, share food and conduct other traditions of the Jewish holiday. By Greg Farrar

The loud rock music echoes from the concert-worthy stage as worshipers lift their hands and sing in the main auditorium. Greeters smile wide and shake hands as families filter in through the main entrance. While the adults find their seats for the service, their children shoot down colorful slides into the KidZone, a place of fun and adventure that takes up the whole downstairs.

This is a typical Sunday morning at Eastridge Church.

Like Eastridge, dozens of churches and places of worship contribute their own cultural and religious style and flavor to make up the fabric of faiths in Issaquah.

In addition to the evangelical Christian faith Eastridge attendees practice, Issaquah residents attend Christian churches of a variety of denominations, including St. Joseph Catholic Church and School. Many others keep their Jewish faith alive at the Chabad of the Central Cascades near the Issaquah Highlands.

Issaquah is also home to growing Hindu, Muslim and Baha’i contingents, and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints plays a major role in numerous community service events and activities.

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Monologue offers ‘View from the Tent’

April 13, 2010

Before Tent City 4 departs from Issaquah, supporters of the homeless camp will pull back the flap and offer a perspective from inside the tent.

“View from the Tent” — a dramatic monologue based on letters from a homeless man — will anchor a benefit April 17 for the homeless encampment. Tent City 4 residents will answer questions from the audience after the performance.

Author M. Barrett Miller compiled letters from a homeless man, identified as Atreus, into a self-published book, “View from the Tent: Thoughts from a Homeless Man.” Dan Niven, a Seattle actor and musician, chanced upon the book as he browsed the shop at St. Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral in Seattle last year.

Miller co-founded a Seattle nonprofit organization, Let Kids Be Kids, dedicated to helping children participate in efforts to aid the homeless and people afflicted with HIV/AIDS. The experience led Miller to homeless camps throughout Seattle.

Once, Atreus handed Miller a letter. The notes continued on subsequent visits. The writer documented the people he met, and their stories, too.

“Overall, the stories are very hopeful. They’re very courageous,” Miller said.

The idea for a performance based on the experiences of a homeless man in Seattle germinated at a Starbucks. The coffee giant serves as the setting for a key scene in the book, as Atreus writes in a letter later used in the tome. Read more

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Performance will benefit Tent City 4

April 6, 2010

Learn about living without permanent shelter in the Seattle area at a performance of “View from the Tent: Thoughts from a Homeless Man” to benefit Tent City 4.

Actor Dan Niven created the dramatic monologue, and he will perform the piece at Mary, Queen of Peace Catholic Church, 1121 228th Ave. S.E., at 7 p.m. April 17. The performance will be followed by audience feedback, as well as conversation with the actor and a panel of Tent City 4 residents.

Tickets cost $10 for adults, $5 for students and seniors through Brown Paper Tickets. Light refreshments will be served at the event. Learn more about the performance at the Tent City 4 Web site.

Tent City 4 arrived in the Community Church of Issaquah parking lot in late January. About 80 homeless people live in the encampment on a given day.

The encampment moves between Eastside churches, and remains at a site for about 90 days. Tent City 4 will leave Issaquah on April 24 for Lake Washington United Methodist Church in Kirkland.

Tent City 4 shelters up to 100 adults at a fenced site with 24-hour security. Organizers do not allow children to live at the encampment. Most Tent City 4 residents leave the camp during the day for work.

Residents undergo warrant and convicted sex offender checks before they are allowed to enter the camp, and strict rules ban offenders.

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Learn about homelessness at Tent City 4 benefit

April 6, 2010

NEW — 6 a.m. March 6, 2010

Learn about living without permanent shelter in the Seattle area at a performance of “View from the Tent: Thoughts from a Homeless Man” to benefit Tent City 4.

Actor Dan Niven created the dramatic monologue, and he will perform the piece at Mary, Queen of Peace Catholic Church, 1121 228th Ave. S.E., at 7 p.m. April 17. The performance will be followed by audience feedback, as well as conversation with the actor and a panel of Tent City 4 residents.

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