Saturday, December 3, 2011

Traffic sign typo

A resident of our neighborhood, who just happens to teach English and has an eagle's eye for errors, noticed a mistake on one of our neighborhood signs.

"It bothers me every time I drive past," she said of the sign on NE 125th Street.

Have you noticed this?

Friday, December 2, 2011

Neighborhood photo, then and now

We have heard all likely heard stories about what kind of agricultural operations were in our neighborhood before it was developed into residential housing. There has been talk of horses in the neighborhood —evidenced by horse shoes regularly dug up in people's yards, the old polo club, a mink raising operation, a mushroom farm and chicken farm.

The photos below are of the intersection of 26th Avenue NE and NE 127th Street, part of the Kenwood land plat. The site is the modern home of the Seattle Gymnastics Academy and Daily Racing Form printing press.

This is part of an occasional series that features old photos from our community. If you have an old photo you would like to share send it to us and we will post it!

Also, if you have any more information on what kind of agriculture was in our neighborhood please leave info in the comments field below, comment on our Facebook Page, or email us at

The intersection of NE 127th Street and 26th Avenue NE. Part of an agricultural and farm operation.The photo is from King County property records and apparently is from 1955.

That same intersection today, home of Daily Racing Form printing press and Seattle Gymnastics Academy. Photo from Google Street View.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Lake City Community Center wall repaired after fatal accident

A Seattle Parks and Recreation crew was repairing the east wall of the Lake City Community Center Thursday afternoon after a recent accident punched a large hole in the side of the building.

In late October a woman directing a car into a parking space at an early-morning event was pinned between the building and a car. The driver of the vehicle she was guiding accidentally hit the gas in the accident. The woman later died at the hospital.

Neighbors meet with police, city officials to discuss crime

Lake City neighbors listen to Terrie Johnston of the Seattle Police Department
Wednesday night concerned Lake City neighbors and block watch groups met with Terrie Johnston, crime prevention liaison with the Seattle Police Department.

Johnston presented some of the latest crime data and discussed ways we can work to prevent crime in our community. She also listened to concerns from area residents, some who have been victims of recent crimes.

Johnston said that residential burglaries have made a substantial leap in northeast Seattle this quarter, although not as significant as some other neighborhoods. So far for this quarter there have been 37 reported residential burglaries. Of those 14 were non-forced-entry burglaries, meaning a burglar entered through and unlocked door or window.

She also said that during the month of December residential burglaries tend to increase as thieves know that homes hold more loot —in the form of holiday gifts— and that often residents are out of town.

Johnston said that Seattle Police have made some significant arrests of burglary teams in recent weeks. In both instances the team consisted of two male burgulars and a female lookout. Often the female would pace the street, talking or texting on her cellphone, acting as a lookout. In one case an alert neighbor noticed the nervous-looking woman pacing near a home and then saw two unfamiliar men come out of the home. The female lookout likely texted the men in the home when she realized the neighbor was watching her. They were later arrested because of the alert neighbor.

Johnston said that 90% of residentail burgularies occur between 6 a.m. and 6 p.m. Our own neighborhood includes a number of residents that work out of a home office and she said that their watchful eyes during the daytime are one of our best defenses against home burglaries.

Some other tips she offered to help prevent home burglary are
  • Always make your house look occupied.
  • Have a trustworthy neighbor gather your newspapers and mail while you are gone. She said that alerting the newspaper carriers that you are away just lets more people know that your home is unoccupied.
  • Have those same neighbors move trash cans and recycle bins from the curb. Unmoved trash and recycle bins are one of the clues that thieves use when looking for a victim.
  • Install motion-sensitive lighting. Criminals like darkness and do not want to be identified.
  • If someone unfamiliar knocks on your door answer it but do not open it. Burglars are often checking to see if someone is home. Also teach children to answer the door but not open it.
  • Keep inventory lists and serial numbers of possessions to help recover stolen property 
  • Call 911 if you suspect suspicious activity. She said that calling police gives officers a reason to speak to suspicious people
  • Do not rely on burglar alarms. Johnston said that 97% of burglar alarm calls in Seattle are false and that most systems are usually not a good investment. She said if you want an alarm that you should have one that makes lots of noise instead of a silent alarm.
  • Probably most importantly she said, get to know your neighbors. She said that statistically people are much more likely to call 911 and report suspicious activity if they know their neighbors' names. And often people living in our neighborhood do not know one another.

She said that she is available to come out and to a do a security assessment of your home. Her email is

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Meeting with Terrie Johnston tonight, Wednesday, Nov. 30

Terrie Johnston
(206) 684-7711
Members of the Douglas Park Cooperative have been invited to a meeting with Terrie Johnston, Seattle Police Department's North Precinct crime prevention coordinator.

Earlier this year Johnston replaced Diane Horswill as a contact for setting up a Block Watch meetings or discussing problems with neighborhood crime.

During the meeting Johnston and officials from the city and block watches will discuss public safety in our neighborhood, current criminal activity, and the role residents can play in reducing crime and increasing quality of life.
Here are the details:

WHEN:  Wednesday, November 30, 2011, 7:00 p.m.

WHERE:  Lake City Presbyterian Church, 40th Avenue NE and NE 123rd St

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Movie Night at the Lake City Community Center

Friday, December 2 at 6:30 the big screen comes to our own Lake City Community Center.

A free screening of the hit Disney/Pixar movie Cars 2 will be shown. Snacks for moviegoers will be provided.

So come on down with your family, bring some pillows and enjoy the big screen with some of your neighbors.

The next movie to be shown will be Avatar on January 6th.

Here is our neighborhood calendar of events. If you know of anything that should be added to the calendar please email us:

Monday, November 28, 2011

Weekly Walk Report 03: November 28th

Our weekly walk on November 28th was one of our best yet.

Eight neighbors walked for almost an hour, picking up litter and talking about ways to improve our neighborhood.

The litter gathering walkers filled at least a couple bags with trash such as an empty bottle of 'Mad Dog,' a hypodermic needle, small pieces of aluminum foil and dozens of wrappers, bags and cups from Dick's Drive-In.

The majority of trash collected was behind the Panos Property building, home of the 99 Cent Etc. Store, Papa Murphy's Pizza, Hairmasters and Teriyaki Time -across from the new Union Gospel Mission homeless shelter.

A pair of suspicious-looking men were seen loitering behind the Panos Property brick walls, a popular hangout for people drinking and using drugs. 

One of two memorials seen during the walk.
Also discovered during the walk were two apparent memorials near the intersection of 30th Ave NE and NE 127th Street. City of Seattle data suggests there have been recent drug overdose deaths in the area and the memorials may be for the overdose victims.

People standing near one of the memorials said the the small shrine, adjacent to the parking lot for Elliott Bay Brewing Co., was for their friend Leonard who died recently.

Our weekly walks build community, offer free exercise and allows us to note things in our neighborhood that we can report to proper authorities. The walks also help us to better understand the issues that affect our community and lessen the fear that can build when you don't really understand your own neighborhood. Join us!

Weekly walk tonight, Monday

Get your walking shoes and reflective vests out. We will meet tonight at the Southeast corner of 125th Street and and 26th Avenue at 7 p.m for our weekly walk.

Hope to see you there!