Madrona – New Sidewalks But Trees Being Removed

Madrona TreeAs I blogged back in September the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) is in the process of replacing the sidewalks in Madrona but at the cost of removing some of the beautiful trees that line our neighborhood streets.  It is somewhat ironic that a Seattle neighborhood that is named after a tree cannot find a way to save the existing trees when fixing the sidewalks.  The SDOT moved quickly on its first phase of the sidewalk project and was able to plant one tree in a half block on 34th where there used to be 4 or 5 trees.  The SDOT does plan to replace 2 trees for every tree they remove, but while the new trees will be “nearby” as seen in the previous link that does not mean along the street where they were.  There is still time to come up with ideas to save future trees, but the SDOT will continue with replacing sidewalks and remove trees along the Madrona streets without these alternative ideas.  If you want to get involved, contact the Madrona Community Council or come to the next meeting to voice your opinion.  Meetings are the first Tuesday of the month, 7:15 PM, at the Madrona Shelterhouse located in the northeast corner of Madrona Playground.

Update: #2 Seattle Metro Bus

King CountyThis is the follow up of my blog on the #2 Bus Route that serves the Madrona neighborhood. An email was sent from a representative from King County Metro Transit saying that the #2 route is safe – for now.  For those who are paranoid (like me), I would continue to take these steps to protect the Metro route, but otherwise this is what the latest news is:

Thank you for taking the time to participate in our outreach process for the September 2012 service change – your input has been very valuable.
We undertake our outreach efforts to develop a better understanding of how the community uses our services, so that the changes we propose balance the needs of riders of a particular route with the needs of current and future riders of our entire system.
The proposals Metro presented for feedback were designed to improve the efficiency of our service to serve more people to more places. Talking with you and others helps us understand how existing service is an important part of your lives and neighborhoods. When proposals include long established high ridership routes within a diverse and multifaceted setting, public outreach helps Metro weigh technical considerations with human factors.
We have received valuable feedback. We’ve heard that there are factors that deserve further review, analysis and understanding. As a result, Metro has decided to postpone the route 2, 4 and 27 proposals. Issues were raised of coverage and traffic congestion on Madison Street, and more information about the unique travel needs of those that live and work in the area is needed. For now, we are not proposing to change existing routing of this set of routes. Instead, we are proposing to just make small adjustments to the frequency and running hours of routes 4 and 27 consistent with demand.
You can expect to see updated web content and materials detailing a recommended proposal in mid-March. You can send us comments by email at, or phone our message line at 206-263-9768.

Victor Obeso
Manager, Service Development
King County Metro Transit


Breaking News: #2 Metro Bus Route Seems to be Saved

Metro BusAs I wrote in previous blogs, the #2 Seattle Metro Bus was endangered of no longer serving from Madrona through Downtown to Queen Anne, but only from Madrona to the Ferry Dock in the near future.

This afternoon there was a meeting at Seattle’s Tate Mason Apartment Building with Metro representatives present.  At the meeting it was announced that Metro management has decided to take the proposed changes to the #2 bus route off the recommendation for system wide restructuring.  The change was made as a result of several Seattle neighborhoods saying the same thing.  It was the breadth of the feedback, not just the numbers, of everyone saying the same thing that caused their decision.

While it is a time of celebration, I am always cautious to get too excited too early.  The final decision will be made by the King County Council on March 1st with the Seattle City Council having input since they control the streets that the Metro buses drive on in the city.  To be safe, I would continue to do the steps recommended in my early blog about saving bus route #2.

Even if we get past this, Metro has financial issues that they are dealing with.  While those issues are about 2 years away, the Madrona Neighborhood might be revisiting the same issues in the not too distant future.

Madrona Area Then & Now

Madrona HistoryThe Seattle P.I. has featured several Seattle neighborhoods with a photo shoot of then & now pictures of local buildings.  Recently they featured the “Madrona and Mann Neighborhoods.”  To be honest, I have lived in the area my whole life and I did not know exactly where the Mann neighborhood was – but I looked it up and determined that the Mann neighborhood is part of what is commonly known as the Central District.  No matter what you call the area, there are some cool old photos of Seattle real estate.  I was personally disappointed because none of the pictures are what I consider Madrona – but it is still interesting nonetheless.  The photos I found the most interesting are the photos of the old Madrona Theatre which was located near the corner of Cherry and Martin Luther King Jr Way – although back when the building was still in existence Martin Luther King was still called Empire Way.

Note:  If you click on the link to the Seattle P.I. and hover over the pictures in the film strip below the large photo, descriptions will pop up about each building.  Enjoy.

Summer Camps in Madrona

Madrona Shelterhouse

Madrona Shelterhouse (above)

Garfield Community Center is hosting a bunch of camps this summer in Madrona.  I do not see the information on the Garfield Community Center Website (link above) at this time but below is a sneak peak at the Seattle Summer Specialty Camps to be offered in Madrona for Summer 2012.  Most of them will be hosted at the Madrona Shelterhouse at the Madrona Playground but some will take place at the Madrona Woods.  Registration will start April 3rd!

Circus Camp
Ages 8 – 12
In this fun, four day camp kids will learn circus arts including acrobatics, tumbling, slack lining juggling, clowning and more. On the last day of camp the participants will perform a circus for friends and family. An additional $5 annual insurance fee will be required prior to registration for all Gymnastics, Tumbling and Cheer Leading classes at Seattle Parks and Recreation facilities. This non-refundable fee covers a child’s participation in all gymnastics, tumbling, or cheer leading classes for one year from the date purchased. SORRY… This fee is not available for online purchase at this time. Please contact your local recreation center to purchase this insurance.
Camp Director: Thomas Heasley
Location: Madrona Shelterhouse
#84498    8/20 – 8/23   Mon – Thu 10 am – 12 pm
Activity Fee $95
Creative Movement Camp
Ages 4 – 6
This summer boys and girls explore dance & movement around a new theme each day through music, games, and creating their own dances. Parents and Friends are welcome to attend our performance at the end of the session. Please wear close fitting clothes with bare feet or ballet slippers.
Camp Director: Mimi (Mary Margaret Moore)
Location: Madrona Shelterhouse
#84499    6/25 – 6/28   Mon –  Thu 9:30 – 11:30 am
Activity Fee $85
GreenStage/Madrona Youth Theatre Camp
Ages 8 – 15
Join GreenStage and Garfield Community Center and enjoy this special opportunity for enrichment and fun this summer. Campers will perform ‘Midsummer Night’s Dream’ on Saturday 8/12 at 10 am Costumes will be provided. Bring a sack lunch and drink. (5 days plus 10:30 am performance on 8/12).
Camp Director: GreenStage Staff
Location: Madrona Shelterhouse
#84501    8/6 – 8/11   Mon –  Fri 9 am – 3 pm, Sat 9:30 – 11:30 am
Activity Fee $255
Madrona Woods Jr. Nature Explorers Camp
Ages 6 – 7
Explore the Madrona Woods with a naturalist. Bring a sack lunch. Includes Nature Camp shirt.
Location: Location: Meet at entry to Madrona Woods – 38th and Marion
#84503    7/9 – 7/11   Mon –  Wed 9:30 am – 12:30 pm
Activity Fee $85
Madrona Woods Nature Explorers Camp
Ages 8 – 9
#84504    7/9 7/11   Mon – Wed 1 – 4 pm
Activity Fee $85
Spanish Summer Camp for Preschoolers
Ages 3 – 6
Around the world in one week! Children will learn Spanish by singing songs, playing games and making crafts from around the world! It is going to be fun! Space is limited. Registration begins April 3.
Camp Director: Manuela Slye
Location: Madrona Shelterhouse
#84506    8/13 – 8/17   Mon –  Fri 10 am – 1 pm
Activity Fee $145
Tween Camp
Ages 8 – 12
Led by trained high school teens, this three day fun filled camp highlights arts and crafts, cooking, sports, nature, special events and more! The camp is supervised by high school seniors under the supervision the Garfield Recreation Leader. Bring a sack lunch/drink.
Camp Directors: Nikitta Vinson and High School Students
Location: Madrona Shelterhouse
#84508    7/23 – 7/25   Mon – Wed 10:30 am – 2:30 pm
Activity Fee $55
Yoga Camp
Ages 7 – 12
Yoga Camp mixes games, story-telling and fun with the physical postures of yoga in a nurturing and non-competitive environment. No yoga experience necessary. Campers need to bring their own lunch and water bottle and wear comfortable, upside-down friendly attire!
Camp Director: Ashley Robles
Location: Madrona Shelterhouse
#84509    7/16 – 7/19   Mon –  Thu 10:30 am – 1 pm
Activity Fee $85
Summer Green Teen Camp
Ages: 12-13/14-16
Join EarthCorps in a weeklong camp that focuses on urban forest restoration projects in your neighborhood. Campers will gain a deeper understanding of why forests are important in urban areas, complete hands-on experience that helps to revitalize a local greenspace, learn about “Green Careers” in Seattle and receive 30 service learning hours upon completion of the camp. All this plus fun, team building and safety.  Gloves, tools and other equipment will be provided be EarthCorps. To register or for more information contact Garfield Community Center at (206)684-4788.
Camp Director: EarthCorps Staff
Location: Meet at entry to Madrona Woods – 38th and Marion
#TBD                      7/16 – 7/20 M – F            9 am – 3 pm
Activity Fee FREE

Madrona Ale House Gets Plug From Seattle City Councilmember

Madrona Ale House

Seattle's Madrona Ale House from 34th & Union

Seattle Weekly recently asked well-known Seattleites what they like to drink and where?  Richard Conlin of the Seattle City Council was quoted as saying he likes to go to the Madrona Ale House and drink beer made by the Fremont Brewing Company.

Click the link to What Seattle Drinks to read Conlin’s quote and see what other Seattleites answered as well.

Save Madrona’s Metro Bus Route

Metro BusSeveral representatives from Metro came to the Madrona Community Council Meeting this past Tuesday and met a packed Madrona Shelterhouse filled with unhappy neighborhood residents.  Madrona residents wanted to have a say on the new proposed route for the #2 Metro Bus and most of the 80 plus people made it clear that they did not like the suggested changes.

If you also want to have a say on the proposed Metro #2 bus route restructuring, several recommendations were made at the meeting on steps you should take to make your opinion known:

  1. Take the Metro Survey.  The survey has changed, so it is important to take this survey whether or not you have already participated in the earlier survey.
  2. Contact your King County Councilmember since Metro is controlled by the county.  Madrona’s King County Councilmember is Larry Gossett.
  3. Contact the Seattle Mayor and Seattle City Council since they control the streets that Metro uses.
  4. Attend a Metro presentation.  Maybe the closest meeting location to Madrona is at the Washington Middle School on February 27th from 6-8 PM, but there is also several other meetings in February.
  5. Share this information with your fellow Madrona neighbors and encourage them to take action as well.

Take what actions you can – I would say step #1, #2, and #5 are the easiest and could be the most important.  Whatever steps you take will help, although it may be an uphill battle to save the #2 route from Madrona through Downtown to Queen Anne.

Madron Community Council Agenda, Tuesday, February 7th

Madrona Community CouncilThe Madrona Community Council meets monthly at the Madrona Shelterhouse located in the brick structure directly east of the tennis courts (5 feet from the tennis courts) at the Madrona Playground.  The meetings are open to the Madrona neighborhood and the general public.  This months meeting is Tuesday, February 7th starting at 7:15 PM – meetings are generally the first Tuesday of the month at 7:15 PM at the Madrona Shelterhouse.

This month’s Madrona Community Council Meeting agenda is as follows:

Please join the meeting if any of these subjects are of interest to you.

Madrona Shelterhouse

Madrona Shelterhouse

Adult Websites Viewed at the Madrona Library?

Seattle LibrariesThere recently has been a debate raging in the Seattle Times about X rated websites being viewed at the Seattle Public Libraries.  In a Seattle Times article by Danny Westneat, Westneat repeats the experience of a mom while she visited the Madrona Library:

“They are protecting perverts over the kids,” one wrote.

It is off-putting what some people do with library computers. Once I was in the tiny Madrona branch with my kids and my mother — who is a librarian herself — when we were confronted with someone watching what must have been a triple-X video.

“What should we do?” I whispered, worried my kids would see.

My mom was disgusted. But she only shrugged.

“There’s nothing to do. Let’s just move over there.”

The experience is not unique to the Madrona branch.  This example shows that it is not isolated to larger libraries such as the Downtown branch, but smaller Seattle neighborhood libraries – even those across from an elementary school such as Madrona K-8.

The debate is essentially those that think the Seattle Public Libraries have no morals or common sense versus the slippery slope argument that if the library starts blocking content then where will it end?  Thus the Seattle Libraries stance is to allow access to individuals to constitutionally protected material.

Seattle Times Blasts Madrona Rep. Santos, Praises Rep. Pettigrew

Sharon SantosA Seattle Times editorial blasts Madrona’s Washington State House Representative Sharon Tomiko Santos (Democrat) while praising  Madrona’s State House Representative Eric Pettigrew (Democrat) for their stances on how to fix the state’s school system.  The Seattle Times editorial said Santos along with her counterpart in the State Senate blocked even a vote on educational reform involving both teacher evaluations and charter schools.

The Seattle Times praised Pettigrew who recently spoke about his struggles at school while growing up in South Central Los Angeles.  Pettigrew wrote a bill to add limited charter schools to the state, but his counterpart Santos would not allow a vote on his bill.

If you have an opinion on this matter, you can click on the links above to either Santos’ or Pettigrew’s bios.  Once on either of their bios you can click “email” and after adding your address you can contact your Madrona Representative.  If you check the box on your email then it will go to all three of your State Representatives.

Santos and Pettigrew not only represent the Seattle neighborhood of Madrona, but Denny Blaine, the Central District, Leschi, Mount Baker, Seward Park, and most of southeast Seattle.