Volunteers Widen NE 104th Way Right-of-Way

A three hour volunteer work party consisting of neighbors around Victory Heights beat back the black berries and moved a large fallen tree to widen the right-of-way along NE 104th Way on Saturday. Here is what it looked like originally:

The black berries had grown down the hill until they reached a 20 feet tree that lay along the side of the road, just up from Lake City Way NE.

The crew started by cutting back the black berries on the other side of the tree to create a wide gap. A number of bags of trash were filled with old cans and bottles that had been thrown to the side of the road over the years.

The original plan was to cut up the tree, so a chainsaw was rented. The first cut went very well with a large trunk-sized branch taken off and cut up for removal.

However, subsequent attempts to cut the main trunk weren’t successful, so we decided to try to roll the tree over up against the hillside to create a wide gap alongside the road.  The idea is the next time the city mows the edges, there is more room for them to cut it back.

Large levers were borrowed from the NE Tool Library (literally down the street as the crow flew from our location), which helped us roll and shift and massive tree.

Several hours later and here was the result:

A large rented dump truck was filled with all the yard waste for disposal.  It was a lot of effort but NE 104th Way looks a lot nicer now and hopefully is safer for pedestrians.

There was thoughts about getting street lights put in but currently there are no utility poles or electricity along NE 104th Way, but perhaps we can persuade the city to install them.

Thanks to all the volunteers who helped out! A great team effort.

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“Beat Back” The Blackberries on NE 104th Way on Saturday

The Victory Heights Community Council announced last night at its monthly meeting an event to help clean up NE 104th Place between 23rd Avenue NE and Lake City Way.

Read the complete minutes of the October meeting.


We’re calling “Beat Back” The Blackberries, and it will be held this Saturday, October 20th from noon to 3 PM on NE 104th Way.  A truck is being rented to haul away debris, we just need volunteers with thick gloves and rakes to come help make the edge of the street safe for pedestrians who use the street to access our neighborhood from Lake City Way.

In other news, the homeless encampment that was in Thornton Creek by the Knickerbocker site which was cleaned up by the city last month, has moved up the creek and is now camped underneath the 15th Avenue NE bridge. It’s on the city’s “queue” for intervention again by their Navigation Team as a prelude to another clean-up. Meanwhile, feel free to keep the pressure up on the city by using the Find-It, Fix-It app or call 911 if you see suspicious activity.

Upcoming events in the works: another gingerbread house fund raiser, caroling in the park (rather than going house-to-house this year), and maybe a luminata during the winter on the new pathway through the park.

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Victory Heights October Events Calendar

Here are events happening in and around our neighborhood this month of interest:

Saturday, October 13th: Free Electronics Recycling:  Sand Point Community United Methodist Church, 4710 NE 70th Street. $1 for every 100 lbs. of material that is collected will be donated to Hero House. Get rid of that old computer at no cost. 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

Saturday & Sunday, October 14th: Arts North! Studio Tour.  This is largest studio tour in north Seattle. Enjoy the opportunity to see a wide variety of arts and crafts, chat with the artists, sample appetizers and sweets. FREE. Maps available at all studios and online at www.artsnorthstudiotour.com 10 AM – 5 PM each day.

Tuesday, October 16th: Victory Heights Community Council Meeting.  Our monthly meeting to discuss issues important to our neighborhood. Guest speaker Laura Jenkins, Community Engagement Coordinator. Co-op preschool building in Victory Heights Park, 7 PM – 8 PM.

Tuesday, October 16th: Hubbard Homestead Park Play Area Project. Help provide input on a play area for Hubbard Homestead Park and learn about the decommissioning of the playground at Victory Creek Park (note: this is the park by the QFC on Northgate, not the park in Victory Heights). The decommissioning of Victory Creek play area will create the opportunity to start new play area at Hubbard Homestead Park. Northgate Community Center, 10510 5th Ave NE, 6:00 PM – 7:30 PM. Another meeting will be in December.

Wednesday, October 24th: Thornton Creek Alliance Meeting. Dr. David Montgomery of UW, will give a talk titled “Growing a Revolution: Soil, Water and Society.” Maple Leaf Lutheran Church, 10005 32nd Ave. NE, 6:30 PM.

Wednesday, October 31st: Halloween. Drive slowly and carefully through the neighborhood this evening and watch for trick-or-treaters in the road.



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Urban Survival Skills Highlights

On a bright, Sunday morning, the Victory Heights Community Council sponsored an Urban Survival Skills Fair next to the park.  Ten separate booths were set up run by volunteers and some city employees, each with a different skill to demonstrate during an emergency such as which types of food you should store, first-aid, HAM radio, pet care, and more.

Dozens of people turned out during the four-hour fair held on a closed-off section of NE 106th Street.

One booth demonstrated the various apps and alerts that are available in this area.  See this print-out for the complete list.

Click on the thumbnails below for more photos from the fair:

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Urban Survival Skills Fair Sunday

This Sunday, September 30th, come to NE 106th Street (west side of Victory Heights Park) for an Urban Survival Skills fair.  Booths will demonstrate important skills you will want to know in case of an emergency or disaster.

Sponsored by the Victory Heights Community Council. It’s completely free and could save your life!

10 AM – 2 PM.

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Strategies For Dealing With Homeless Encampments

At last night’s meeting of the Victory Heights Community Council, we heard from the city’s point man on homelessness, George Scarola, about the recent situation in the Kingfisher green belt of Thornton Creek.

Read the entire minutes of the September meeting.

George said a rather large settlement of five homeless camps had been set up in the greenbelt south of 17th Avenue NE in recent weeks. After the city’s Navigation Team worked to arrange temporary housing with some of the campers, eventually they were given three day’s notice that everything would be cleared out. This was done with a large city presence last Friday, September 14th. As of Wednesday evening, the site was still all clear.  However, people are camping underneath the 15th Avenue NE bridge again. George said it would be “added to the queue” and the city would get to it in time. In the meanwhile, he had this advice:

  • If you see signs of encampment, report via the “Find It, Fix It” app or call the phone number listed at the trail head
  • Any suspicious activity, call 9-1-1
  • Illegal activity, call 9-1-1
  • Report any of the above concerns immediately to VictoryHeights.Seattle@gmail.com
  • Don’t take pictures of, or confront, people
  • Equipment for safely picking up needles is available in the job box at the head of the trail on 104th/17th or call (206) 684-7250

Ann Forrest, Chair of the VHCC, has put together a list of times that folks can use to help patrol the space. Please go to: http://signup.com/go/RXPppDv to sign up for the Thornton Creek Walkabout where neighbors will regularly patrol the greenbelt to prevent further beachheads of camps from forming.

In other news, the community council will be holding an Urban Survival Skills Fair on Sunday, September 30th on NE 106th Street on the west side of Victory Heights Park between 10 AM and 2 PM.  Booths will be set up on the (closed) street to teach useful skills to have during an emergency event.  You could be there for three hours and still catch the kickoff of the Seahawks game that afternoon, so stop on by.

The Parks Department will evaluate Victory Heights Park next week with a possibility of removing the fence around the new lawn.

Have you noticed this blog is loading much faster now? The community council took official possession of the victoryheights.org URL (previously owned and hosted by the folks at Pinehurst Seattle) and moved the blog over to a commercial web host where it now loads much faster and more reliably.  Thanks to Pinehurst Seattle for the many years they hosted our site.

Please take a moment to “Like” our Facebook Group for the Victory Heights Blog.

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September Events Calendar

UPDATED! Here are events of interest to Victory Heights this month:

Tuesday, September 11th: Disaster Skills Basic Aid: The first of city-sponsored classes for dealing with emergencies. 5:30 PM – 7:30 PM, Beacon Hill Library, 2821 Beacon Ave S.

Wednesday, September 12th: Disaster Skills Workshop: 5:30 PM – 7:30 PM, Ballard Library, 5614 22nd Ave NW.

Monday, September 17th: Lake City Corridor Improvement Project Drop-In Session: We’re getting more sidewalks and bike lanes on Lake City Way (yea!). Find out more in the first of two “drop-in” sessions: 6 PM – 8 PM, Faith Lutheran Church, 8208 18th Avenue NE.

Tuesday, September 18th: Victory Heights Community Council meeting.  Find out first-hand about issues affecting our neighborhood.  7 PM in the co-op preschool building in Victory Heights Park.

Wednesday, September 19th: Light Search & Rescue Class: 6 PM – 8 PM, Seattle Fire Joint Training Facility, 9401 Myers Way S.

Thursday, September 20th: “Stop The Bleed” Class: 5:30 PM – 7:30 PM, Douglas-Truth Library, 2300 E Yesler Way.

Saturday, September 22nd: Home Retrofit Class: 10:30 AM – 12:30 PM, Beacon Hill Library, 2821 Beacon Ave S.

Tuesday, September 25th: Lake City Corridor Improvement Project Drop-In Session 2: 6 PM – 8 PM, Lake City Community Center, 12531 28th Avenue NE.

Sunday, September 30th: Urban Survival Skills Fair: Join your neighbors in Victory Heights Park to find out about finding drinking water, HAM radio, emergency hacks, get home bag, emergency toilets.  Free and fun for all ages, sponsored by the Victory Heights Community Council.  10 AM – 2 PM in Victory Heights Park.

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Communications HUB Drill September 15th

The Victory Heights Emergency Communications HUB will have another drill to “test drive” operations on Saturday, September 15th from 10 AM to 1 PM in Victory Heights Park.

Everyone is welcome (volunteers needed!) to learn how the community supports itself after a major disaster.

The Scenario:

Day 3 after a medium-sized earthquake (magnitude 5.0) lasting 25 seconds.

  1. Move those papers around and actually match resources and needs (we’ll provide scenarios)
  2. Brainstorm how to shut the Hub down for the night
  3. Continue to educate the community

Join us to learn how the community supports the HUB.  We hope to see you there!

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School Is Open: Bus Etiquette for Cars

School buses will soon roll out across Seattle. Here’s a review of what to do when their red lights flash.

RULE 1 – When you’re behind the bus
Always stop, regardless of the number of lanes. Never try to pass on the right, since that’s where kids are loading and unloading.

RULE 2 – When the bus is coming toward you
Stop unless the road has three or more lanes (at least one in each direction, plus a center turn lane) or the lanes are separated by a physical barrier or median.

Once the red lights come on, you need to stay stopped until the bus driver turns them off.

From Pemco Insurance

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Thornton Creek Homeless Situation

The Victory Heights Community Council has been made aware of a homeless encampment in Thornton Creek in the green belt near 17th Avenue NE.  After talking with stakeholders, they released this statement on how to deal with it going forward:

Dear neighbors,

The individuals camping near Thornton Creek will be approached by the City’s Navigation Team in the next few weeks.  They will be educated about available services and encouraged to take advantage of such.  They will be given three days to remove their belongings from the area and/or their belongings can be placed into storage.   After the three days, the Navigation Team will remove the debris and clean up the site.

Because this site is so important to our neighborhood and the health of all, we encourage everyone to contact City officials and keep the pressure on for the earliest possible resolution.

How the City prioritizes sites:


“The following criteria, which have no relative priority, shall be considered when prioritizing encampments for removal: (1) objective hazards such as moving vehicles and steep slopes; (2) criminal activity beyond illegal substance abuse; (3) quantities of garbage, debris, or waste; (4) other active health hazards to occupants or the surrounding neighborhood; (5) difficulty in extending emergency services to the site; (6) imminent work scheduled at the site for which the encampment will pose an obstruction; (7) damage to the natural environment of environmentally critical areas; and (8) the proximity of homeless individuals to uses of special concern including schools or facilities for the elderly.”

These particular encampments, along the Thornton Creek, address 4 out of 8 concerns.

  1. Human waste is being dumped close to the stream.  The pathogens contaminate ecological systems and also sicken humans and animals.
  2. If someone in that area needed emergency help, it would be VERY difficult for first responders to reach them.
  3. The Thornton Creek watershed is both Seattle’s and Shoreline’s largest watershed, and drains into Lake Washington at Matthews Beach Park. That water ultimately goes through the Lake Washington Ship Canal to Puget Sound. The creek is a historic home to at least five species of Pacific salmon and trout.
  4. That area is used by many children/families as they make their way to Sacajawea Elementary School. The first day of school is Sep 5th.


Customer Service Bureau:

Phone: (206) 684-2489

Customer Service report form

Find It, Fix It app (Android and iPhone users)

Fax: (206) 684-5529

Mailing Address:

Customer Service Bureau
PO Box 94726
Seattle, WA 98124-4726

District 5 Council Member Debora Juarez

Write, call, email. 

Use the talking points above.

Contact the CSB regularly!!


Victory Heights Community Council

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