The Victory Heights Community Council versus The World Crime League

It may not be a conspiracy, but the level of crime in Victory Heights lately has been unsettling to attendees of last night’s Victory Heights Community Council.

Read the full minutes of last night’s meeting.

Back at its regular meeting place in the Co-Op Pre-School building in Victory Heights Park, last night the council heard about recent criminal activity including a car stolen just hours earlier from 23rd Avenue NE that had also been stolen just a month earlier from the same location! A number of mail thefts have occurred as well, not only from unlocked mail boxes but the attempted jimmying of locked boxes on 20th Avenue NE. A number of car prowls and burglaries have been reported in recent weeks too.

No doubt the warm summer weather encouraged the criminal element to be out and seize on opportunities, but it’s also very important for residents to always call the police when you see something amiss or suspicious. The police need to know what is going on in our community so they can respond appropriately.

In November, the North Precinct of the Seattle Police Department will be sending their community liaison officer to attend our community council meeting, and they will be able to discuss block watches as well as other methods that can be used to deter crime. That will be on November 18th.

In other business, a motion passed to name the new traffic circle on 23rd Avenue NE after the late Susan Causin. And a dog poop bag dispenser is about to be installed in the park in case any dog owners forget to bring their own bags. It will be restocked by volunteers.

The next meeting will be at the pre-school at 7PM on Tuesday, October 21st.

Northgate Library Hosts Robin Williams Film Festival

The Northgate library branch is having a Robin Williams Film Festival starting Sunday with “Aladdin,” his 1992 Disney hit where he played the Genie.

The Robin Williams Tribute film series will include:

New Traffic Circle on 23rd Avenue NE

traffic circle 3After many years of effort by the community, the new traffic circle on 23rd Avenue NE and NE 105th Street was put in by the city finally.  The circle was installed right after the Labor Day weekend, although funding was originally approved last December. Unfortunately, long time community activist Susan Causin, who was instrumental in getting the circle funded through the North District Council (NDC), passed away over the summer before she could see it installed. Susan helped revive the Victory Heights Community Council in 2012 to help make the case to the NDC, which annually makes recommendations to the city about appropriating money for the Parks and Street Fund projects such as the traffic circle. Susan originally organized the Victory Lane Block Watch for the street she lived on for many years, which included an e-mail distribution list and annual block party. In October 2012 she organized the first meeting of the Victory Heights Community Council to be held in nearly 10 years. Although she made it clear she did not want to be in charge, she did become a board member, and held numerous meetings at her house for emergency preparedness. Her involvement in community activities continued right up through participating in the earthquake simulation drill at the Lake City Hub on May 17, 2014. She was 72 when she passed away from cancer in July, and her friends and neighbors in Victory Heights will miss her spirit and activism.

Upcoming Events Calendar

Here are activities in and around Victory Heights that might interest you:

Saturday, September 6, Northaven Neighborhood Picnic. 11:30 AM – 2: 30 PM. Music and food, $8 for adults, $4 for children 3-12.

Wednesday, September 10, Northgate Bridge Briefing, Northgate Community Center, 6 – 7 PM. SDOT will talk about the proposal to put a pedestrian/bike bridge over I-5 to connect North Seattle Community College to the new Link Light Rail transit center. E-mail Art Brochet to RSVP.

Sunday, September 14th, Thornton Creek Alliance 20th Anniversary Celebration. Cromwell Park, 18030 Meridian Ave N., Shoreline, 1-4 PM. Concert in the park and free ice cream and cake.

Tuesday, September 16, Victory Heights Community Council Meeting, Co-Op Preschool Building in the Park, 7 – 8 PM. Join your neighbors to meet and discuss issues relevant to Victory Heights.

New Bridge Over Creek Open; Students A No Show

P9020659The new pedestrian bridge over Thornton Creek at the Knickerbocker Natural Area (20th Avenue NE) was open for business this morning but no students heading towards Sacajawea Elementary School turned up. As construction crews paused for an hour for the scheduled 8 AM – 9 AM opening, with a flagger standing by, the first people to use the new 85 foot bridge instead were three dog walkers.

The bridge will reopen this afternoon between 2:45 and 3:30 PM when school lets out. Even if you aren’t a student, this is an excellent chance to get a close-up view of the work that continues to be done to the creek.

Last night’s huge rainstorm left standing water around the construction area which was still cleaning up after Monday’s storm. But things were expected to get back on schedule within a day.

The bridge will continue to be open weekday mornings between 8 – 9 AM and again in the afternoons 2:45 – 3:30 PM until the project is completed sometime in October.

Pedestrian Bridge Building Over Thornton Creek

P8260653The Knickerbocker Floodplain Project at Thornton Creek continues with the building of a new pedestrian bridge this week to link 20th Avenue NE with Maple Leaf. The old bridge was demolished in July as part of moving and widening the creek and creating a floodplain.

Previous: Kickerbocker Floodplain Work Begins July 1st

Work has been delayed at the site by the large rainstorms, adding several weeks to the project. Originally it was to be completed by the end of August in time for the fish runs, as well as school beginning (many students cross here to reach Sacajawea Elementary school). The plan now is the have the bridge open by September 3rd although construction around the area will continue into October. Safety measures will be added which include:
-Fenced walkways on both ends of the bridge to keep students separate from construction work.
-A flagger at each end of the bridge to alert crews when students are present and guide students safely through the pedestrian path.
-Large equipment will pause when students are present.

The bridge will be open only during school commute times:
-Morning: 8:00-9:00 a.m.
-Afternoon: 2:45-3:30 p.m.

The bridge is scheduled to reopen to all pedestrians when construction is complete at the end of October.

12th Annual Jokumfest Jazz Festival Saturday

Jokumfest 2012

Jokumfest 2012

Victory Heights’ own jazz festival, Jokumfest, is having its 12th annual event, Saturday, August 16th starting in the afternoon through the evening. It is held, as always, in the backyard of Gary Schudie’s house, 2021 NE Northgate Way. It’s free, and in addition to hours of live music, features food and beer, including a special Jokumfest brew. “Bring something to share [i.e. food],” the organizers suggest.

UPDATE: Here is the complete schedule of acts:

3:00 – 3:50 – Eric Nelson & Brandon Beligni
4:10 – 5:00 – Papa Bear Band
w/ Shawn Stecker, Billy Reed, Jack Cook, Don Buss & Matt Fogdall
5:20 – 6:10 – Brian Butler
6:30 – 7:30 – Hughs Blues
Rhythm & Blues extravaganza w/G W Levell, Jack Cook, Don Forsyth, Steve Branca & Bert DeCoy
7:50 – 8:40 – John Deely & the Victory Heights All Stars
9:00 – 9:50 – Hughs Blues & guests
Rhythm & Blues extravaganza w/G W Levell, Al Farlow, Don Forsyth, Steve Branca & Bert DeCoy

Enjoy this compilation video from previous years:

Idriss Mosque Annual BBQ Sunday

The Idriss Mosque, at the corner of 15th Avenue NE and Northgate Way, will be having a BBQ Open House on Sunday, August 10th between 2 PM – 5 PM. They say, “Our annual BBQ is sponsored by the Islamic Center of Washington in efforts to strengthen our communities, help us to work together for peace, compassion, reconciliation and justice, as well as promote harmony, tolerance and interfaith relationships, through sharing and learning from each other.”  The invitation is extended to ” you, your family, friends and all religious and civic members and leaders in the community.”

Neighborhood Night Out Includes Visits From Firemen, Live Musicians

NNO2014 002Last night’s Neighborhood Night Out (NNO) in Victory Heights not only attracted an estimated 140 residents, but visits from the local fire and police department, and a live acoustic band that set up in the park. It was another gorgeous, shady evening on NE 106th Street as the street was blocked off and tables were set up just before 6 PM. Food began to arrive quickly, as well as information booths for “Ask the Gardener,” emergency preparedness, Thornton Creek Alliance (with a very nice new map), and the Victory Heights Community Council.

NNO2014 001Within a few minutes, at either end of the set-up, a police car rolled up and a fire engine from Station 39 (even though it was Engine 40–a long story). Both had been at nearby calls and wanted to stop by our NNO and say hi. The two patrolmen (both working our precinct, Lincoln 2) couldn’t stay for long, but answered questions and mingled for a few minutes. The fire truck parked for an hour and was a huge hit with the kids. The firemen were able to eat some of our fine food as well.

NNO2014 003About an hour in, some musicians wandered over and asked if it was okay for them to set up and play acoustic music. We said, “Yes, of course,” and they organized themselves on the grassy area in the park nearby.

Organizer Heidi Smeller and her team said that in addition to all the great food that was brought, that over $100 in donations had been collected and, “All in all, a great Neighborhood Night Out.  I’m excited to keep building on our experiences and make 2015 even better!” Thanks to everyone who came and participated.

Please take a moment to “Like” the Victory Heights Blog Facebook page.

Neighborhood Night Out Tuesday

If you are in Victory Heights you’ve received a flyer, seen the signs, hopefully marked your calendars, now it’s time to go to the Neighborhood Night Out, Tuesday, August 5th from 6 PM to 8 PM. We’re blocking off NE 106th Street, just west of Victory Heights Park. There will be a potluck dinner (remember serving spoons) and free ice cream.  Tables will be set up representing the Victory Heights Community Council, Emergency preparedness (see if your block has a captain yet), Thornton Creek Alliance, and a native plant expert.

The NNO was a big success last year and we are hoping for an even better turn out this year. Meet your neighbors and discuss issues that are important to Victory Heights. The weather looks great, bring the kids, maybe some chairs to sit on, and we’ll see you on Tuesday!

UPDATE: There are also two night out parties north of Northgate Way, one on 19th near 113th, and one on 17th near 113th.