Car2Go free signup ends March 3rd

You’ve undoubtedly seen the swarm of little blue and white Car2Go Smartcars that have appeared on our streets recently. I learnt about them as chair of the East District Council (and wrote a letter of support), attended the company’s presentation to the Capitol Hill Community Council and joined the program during the rollout event. They’re a “park almost anywhere” alternative to Zipcar.

I’ve now driven them a couple of times and my impressions pretty much mirror the comprehensive discussion on the Seattle Transit Blog (which addresses the Car2Go vs. Zipcar vs bus vs taxi issues). They are indeed small and a bit jerky to drive, but they do the job, and are often available within a 5 minute walk of most places on the hill. The free iPhone app works well to locate the nearest one, and then reserve it for 15 minutes while you walk to it.

i note that the company’s website is offering free membership (normally $35) and 30 mins free drive time through March 3rd, and I would encourage you to sign up now if you’re even remotely likely to use it. Note the $1000 insurance deductible and assorted other costs, including a $5 add-on to the 520 bridge toll.

(BTW: the parking nitty-gritty)

Talk with School Board member about plans for Meany school modernization

The Seattle Schools  Capitol Levy (Proposition 2) has been approved, so the the School District can proceed with its  plans for Meany School:

Meany Middle School: Modernize and re-purpose. ($14.5M)

The existing building would be modernized. It was originally built as a junior high school and would be reopened as a comprehensive middle school. This project will address current and projected middle school enrollment growth in central Seattle and reduce overcrowding at Washington Middle School. 

I suspect many neighbors of Meany School will be interested in the design process for the school. Our School Board member (Kay Smith-Blum) suggests that we attend her next community meeting: Saturday February 16th, 10 – 11:30 AM at the Capitol Hill Library, where she can share information about the new Meany School.

I raised the possibility of a specific neighborhood meeting about the project, perhaps as a Miller Park Neighborhood Association meeting. She noted that they will be convening a building team in March, and that would be a good time for us to get involved and that she could help arrange a meeting.

Please contact me (andrew_taylor@me.com) if you would like to be involved in the Meany School planning process, and please share this with other interested neighbors.

School Levy Election; Meany School Redevelopment

You have till Tuesday evening to mail in your ballot in the Seattle School District Levies election:

 

If the Capitol Levy (Proposition 2) passes, the School District has plans for Meany School:

Meany Middle School: Modernize and re-purpose. ($14.5M)

The existing building would be modernized. It was originally built as a junior high school and would be reopened as a comprehensive middle school. This project will address current and projected middle school enrollment growth in central Seattle and reduce overcrowding at Washington Middle School. 

I suspect many neighbors of Meany School will be interested in the design process for the school. Our School Board member (Kay Smith-Blum) suggests that we attend her next community meeting: Saturday February 16th, 10 – 11:30 AM at the Capitol Hill Library, where she can share information about the new Meany School.

I raised the possibility of a specific neighborhood meeting about the project, perhaps as a Miller Park Neighborhood Association meeting. She noted that they will be convening a building team in March, and that would be a good time for us to get involved and that she could help arrange a meeting.

Please contact me (andrew_taylor@me.com) if you would like to be involved in the Meany School planning process, and please share this with other interested neighbors.

Punxsutawney Phil

by Phil Meneely, Our Punxsutawney Correspondent.
(reprinted from the February 1991 edition of the “Miller Times”)

For more than 100 years, the town of Punxsutawney, PA, has been the official home of the groundhog. It is here that, on February 2, the groundhog emerges from his burrow and forecasts the weather for the next six weeks. If he sees his shadow, the groundhog is frightened and sleeps for another six weeks of winter. If he does not see his shadow, he stays outside to enjoy an early spring. This is not a task that all groundhogs are able to perform. Only a select few, the descendants of a royal line of weather-forecasting groundhogs, are reliable forecasters—or, as we say in Punxsutawney, prognosticators. This groundhog is named Phil. And this groundhog lives only in one place, my home town of Punxsutawney, PA.

To ensure that there will always be an official prognosticator, the town of Punxsutawney built a burrow for Phil and his mate Phyllis in the city hall, between the library and the jail. For 364 days a year, Phil and Phyllis live in relative peace and quiet, their days disturbed only by occasional tourists and well-wishers. This is their residence, but is not the seat of the prognostication. The forecast itself comes from atop a hill outside of town, Gobblers Knob. (The current location of Gobblers Knob is a new one, about a mile from the original site, which is now a gas well.) On February 2, Phil awakens early in the morning and accompanies the members of the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club from the city hall to Gobblers Knob. Amidst pomp and ceremony, he enters his burrow and emerges minutes after sun up for the forecast that the world awaits. Phil’s prognostication is officially interpreted by the President of the Groundhog Club, who alone can speak the local groundhog dialect, and announced to the national and international news media. All of the networks are there, including (in recent years) CNN, and stations from Japan and Germany. The early announcement allows Phil’s forecast to be broadcast on the Today Show, Good Morning America, and the other early morning programs, usually with live action footage of the shadow itself. Of course, the most important organ for communication is the Punxsutawney Spirit which holds the presses until Phil’s pronouncement is made.

While Punxsutawney has been the home of the groundhog for more than 100 years, the ceremony has not always been this way. Phil is the current regent, but only 20 years ago the groundhog was Pete. Phil’s original mate was Philomcna, who died with out producing an heir. Phyllis has been more successful, and the anxiety arising from the lack of a successor has abated. Phil was the first groundhog to occupy the city hall burrow, with Pete and all previous groundhogs being housed with the President of the Groundhog Club. Phil’s image has also changed, from a dapper but solemn groundhog carrying an umbrella to a cheerful, buck toothed grin. But some parts will never change. There will always be groundhog tracks on the sidewalks of the downtown streets; there will always be groundhog statues in the park and in front of the school; the high school will get the afternoon out of class to crown the Groundhog King and Queen; the high school sports teams will be the Woodchucks (abbreviated Chucks); the Saint will continue to have a groundhog on its letterhead; and Hungers Stationery Store will be the best place to buy groundhog mugs, pennants, napkins, posters, cookie cutters (essential for making the traditional groundhog cookie), and other souvenirs of the only official groundhog, Punxsutawney Phil.

To reach Punxsutawney. From the north, follow the road through Stump Creek and Anna, and turn right where the Church of God burned down. From the south and west, go to Stuby’s Farm and turn right in Covode, going past the old Dairy Queen. Turn left where the out-of control semi ran into the beer distributor. From the east, follow the road that flooded during Hurricane Agnes in 1974 to Cloe and Rossiter, and turn right towards Steffeys Market. Be sure to stop and say hello to Murray and Elin..

LEGO Daycamps with 100,000 Lego pieces: Jan 2 to 4, 2013

Still time to sign up for some fun sounding LEGO daycamps at Miller Community Center:

a) LEGO Pre-Engineering for 5 to 6 year olds, Jan 2nd to 4th

More details of the company that runs them and of the actual program

 

 

b) LEGO Engineering Fundamentals for 7 to 12 year olds, Jan 2nd to 4th

 More details of the company that runs them and of the actual program

 

Call Miller Community Center, 330 – 19th Ave E., at (206) 684-4753 with any questions.

(disclosure: I’m on the volunteer council for Miller Community Center and know one of the instructors)

Care to help wrap presents or!3{2}volunteer at the Miller Holiday Party?

Miller Community Center and the Country Doctor Community Clinic (on 19th)  host an annual giant holiday party for the clinic’s patients and other (mostly disadvantaged) families in Seattle. Kids from 0 to 10 years old enjoy games and receive presents, and everyone gets a holiday meal.

This is a large event that provides lunch, entertainment, and more than 1000 gifts to local children.  The party is  Saturday, December 15th from 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

In preparation for this event, Miller will be holding three gift wrapping work parties on Thursday, December 6, Monday, December 10, and Thursday, December 13, from 4-9 p.m.

 Volunteer opportunities include:

1.        Help wrapping presents at the three work parties. Please drop by Miller Community Center any time between 4-9 p.m. on December 6, 10, and 13.

2.       Donations for supplies and gifts. We are in need of wrapping paper and tape. Also, we will be collecting gifts for children 12 years old and younger.

3.       Help decorating and setting up for the holiday party on Friday, December 14 from 5:30-9 p.m.

4.       Help during the holiday party on December 15 from 9 a.m. -2 p.m. Volunteer opportunities include helping at the art and crafts stations, handing out presents, supervising the bouncy house, directing participants, serving lunch, etc.

5.       Help clean up after the holiday party on December 15 from 2-5 p.m.

 For more information volunteers can contact Lori Van Norman at 206-684-5078 or by email lori.vannorman@seattle.gov.

This slideshow gives the flavor of the gift wrapping and party in 2010, which served 1660 kids:

 

Tuesday Evening Miller Community Center Open House: details!

Miller Community Center would like to invited you to Miller’s Open House on Tuesday, December 4 from 6-8 p.m. Come enjoy treats, see the facility, participate in activities and register for winter classes.
Starting at 6 p.m.
  • Megan Frazer, Nurturing Pathways Instructor, will host a unique class for you and your baby or toddler to explore creative dance, movement and music. This is class is fun for mom, dad and baby.
  • Seattle Futsal will be hosting indoor soccer for youth ages 10-13. Bring your child to the center to kick around the soccer ball and burn off some energy.
  • Meet our new multi-talented music teacher. Adam Creighton will be teaching drum, base, guitar, ukulele, and piano this winter. If you are thinking about trying a new instrument or would like to start your child playing Tuesday is the day to meet the teacher and ask your questions.
  • See our new play school room and ask the coordinator questions. The room will be open from 6-8 p.m. for toddlers and preschoolers to play with toys.

Starting at 7:30 p.m.

  • Try our new Zumba Toning and Boot Camp. Everyone is invited and all fitness levels welcome.

Miller Community Center Staff hopes you will stop by Tuesday and check out some of our winter programs.

Miller Community Center

330 19th Ave E

Seattle, WA 98112

206-684-4753

Get rid of old compact fluorescent bulbs on Saturday November 10th

Recycle and Save Saturdays

Recycle and Save EventsTo encourage recycling of compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs), Seattle City Light and Seattle Public Utilities are hosting Recycle and Save Events in October and November. Bring in your burned-out CFLs to an event below, and receive a free CFL. Plus, learn about available Seattle City Light rebates and get tips for saving energy in your home.

Note: Up to 3 free CFLs per household please. While supplies last.

Retailer Location Times and Dates:

  • Home Depot – 1335 N 205th, Shoreline, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., 11/03/2012
  • Lowes – 2700 Rainier Ave, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., 11/10/2012
  • Lowes – 12525 Aurora N, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., 11/11/2012
  • McLendon Hardware – 10210 16th Ave SW, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., 11/17/2012

Details, links, more, right here.

Because CFLs contain small amounts of mercury, they must be disposed of and recycled at a local collection site and not thrown in the trash. There are many convenient locations that recycle CFLs for free, including Bartell Drugs, Home Depot, Lowes, McLendon Hardware and SCL’s North and South Service Centers. To encourage recycling, Seattle City Light and Seattle Public Utilities are hosting Recycle and Save Events in October and November. Bring in your burned out CFLs to an event below, and receive a free CFL! Plus, learn about available Seattle City Light rebates and get tips for saving energy in your home.

District Council Meeting: Cannabis Legislation AND Big Bucks for transportation projects

The East District Council is the City’s preferred way to communicate with neighborhood groups in our area. For better or worse, I chair the Council this year (but am kind of hoping YOU might want to do so next year).

The Monday October 8th meeting has (uncharacteristically) TWO very interesting topics which should bring you to the meeting, which is 5:45 to 7:45 PM at the Capitol Hill Library (upstairs meeting room, 425 Harvard Avenue East)

1) At 6 PM Councilmember Licata will talk with us about the City’s proposed Cannabis Legislation. See below for note from Council Chair Sally Clark.

2) At 6:30 PM Program Manager Therese Casper will describe how we (as groups or individuals) can apply for “Bridging the Gap Neighborhood Street Fund” money for large transportation projects:

The Neighborhood Street Fund Program pays for neighborhood transportation projects which are identified and prioritized by the community itself.  The funds for this program come from the Bridging the Gap (BTG) transportation levy passed by voters in November 2006 which expires in 2015.  The levy has $4.5 million in funds to cover planning, design and construction of a third (and final) round of projects.

Projects will be considered if they are large, but not too large ($100,000 – $750,000), related to transportation, entirely on existing public right-of-way and have the support of their local neighborhood District Council.

At 7PM we’ll revert to the usual dull but important business of District Councils, but you’ll be polite enough to stay, see what we do, and decide if you want to help us make it more interesting and more riveting.

Andrew Taylor,

Chair, East District Council

Thanks so much for passing along information about the District Council meeting on October 8th. I’m afraid a few wires might have gotten crossed with regards to scheduling – Council President Clark will not be at this meeting although she is eager to speak with Councilmember Licata to know about community input and would love anyone who would like to share input with her to send her an e-mail at sally.clark@seattle.gov or call our office at 206-684-8802.  Best wishes for a successful meeting.