Friday, April 17, 2015

More Yesler Swamp History

The Friends of Yesler Swamp, located in Laurelhurst, has published a variety of posts regarding the history of Yesler Swamp, including history of the area from settlement, sawmill, town of Yesler, historic photos, videos, source notes and more.

The website says:

Most people know that Henry Yesler once ran a mill in downtown Seattle at the foot of what we now call Yesler way. But what does Yesler Swamp have to do with the famous Seattle pioneer? Find out the answer to this and lots more.

Here is one of the excerpts from their Blog about the town of Yesler in Laurelhurst, which originally provided housing for the saw mill workers which was a thriving community.


In 1888, Yesler platted the Town of Yesler to provide housing for the mill workers. The town was laid out to the north of the mill and to the northwest of Yesler Swamp. The town extended from its south border on Front Street (now NE 41st Street) to Wilkes Street on the west (now approximately the western border of Talaris) and north to Railroad Street (now NE 45th Street).

Plat of Town of Yesler
Homes were built, and the Town of Yesler became a thriving community. Some of the original houses are still standing.

Photo courtesy of Paul Dorpat

The Town of Yesler post office opened in 1890 with Theron W. Peck as the first postmaster. Peck distributed the mail for sawmill workers from a boarding house that he ran.[32] One lot in the Town of Yesler was also set aside in 1891 for a church.[33]
In 1892, Yesler School District No. 77 opened a one room schoolhouse for the children in the Town of Yesler.[34] Children from Laurelhurst also attended Yesler School, which they reached by walking west across Yesler Creek.[35]

Photo courtesy of Paul Dorpat
In 1910, Seattle incorporated the Town of Yesler as part of the city.[36] Henry Yesler died before the town became a thriving community, but his legacy survives in the neighborhood still designated as the “Town of Yesler Addition.”[37]

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Drop-In Chess Today At Northeast Branch Library

Chess Club

The Northeast Branch (6801 35th Avenue N.E)of the Seattle Public Library is offering "Drop-in Chess" for ages 5-18, today from 5:30-7:30pm.

The information says:
Come play a game of chess! Children, tweens and teens are invited to drop by for fun and casual games of chess.   
Chess puzzles and basic chess instruction also available.All skill levels are welcome. Chess sets and guidance by an adult chess coach will be available.

For more information go here.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

March Laurelhurst Real Estate Summary

Thanks to Kim Dales for providing us with this neighborhood real estate activity monthly report.  Kim can be reached at 206.235.777 or

March Madness happened in Laurelhurst month with a strong showing of 6 new listings, 6 pending listings, and 4 sold homes.

As has been the trend, we continue to have very low days on market if a home is perceived to be well priced by buyers, and of course the fact that our inventory citywide remains extremely low!

The median home price in March was $1,002,250 with only an average of 8 days on the market.

Price                                   Quantity                   DOM* 

$850,000 - $899,999            1                              7
$900,000 - $949,999            1                             2
1,000,000 – 1,249,999         1                            14
$2,000,000                           3
Total                                     6

Median Price = $2,575,000

Price                                   Quantity                   DOM 

$850,000 - $899,999                    1                              7
$900,000 - $949,999                    1                              2 
$1,000,000 - $1,249,999             2                             80
$1,250,000 - $1,499,999            1                               5
$2,000,000 +                             1                               6
Total                                         6

Median Price: $1,187,500
Average DOM = 30

Price                                   Quantity                   DOM 

$750,000 - $799,999               1                            7
$900,000 - $949,999               1                             6
$1,000,000 - $1,249,999         1                            7
$1,500,000 - $1,749,999         1                           10
Total                                        4        

Median price = $1,002,250
Average DOM = 8

* = Days on Market

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Video Of Eagle Nest Activity At Talaris

Last month the Laurelhurst Blog staff reported that the eagle nest, in a large tree just off of 41st Avenue NE on the Talaris property, has been filled with activity.

The Blog staff continues to receive eyewitness accounts of the goings-on:
We have been actively recording the eagle activity since before the first pair built the nest.  They started roosting in the area the summer before they built the nest.  Historically they have laid their eggs the last week of March every year, so we are on watch now.
The "intruder"  bird seen in March, was likely a chick from the previous year.  I saw it the other day near the occupied nest whistling for food.  The second adult, presumedly the male, was near by and ignoring the pleading.  If it had been a stranger there would have been a fight, which we have seen in the past.  The male bird is the nest "owner", this time of year he brings food offerings to the lady, who dines in,  to win her favors.   Once the eggs are laid, takes several days, the pair trade off keeping things warm. 
We counted 4 eagles at 2:10 PM on the 20th of March. 
On April 1st, I captured what I could from the video on my phone. There was one in the nest, then this one flew in. There's a younger one perched by the nest, while another one circled around. So, we saw 4 at one time.  I'm guessing that the branches are going to be leafing out, so it's going to be difficult to see the nest soon. 
There's a tree on East Laurelhurst Dr. where a couple has mated over that past 3 years. Very entertaining for the neighbors! I have an awesome photo from February last year (shown above).

Here is the video:

Monday, April 13, 2015

Spring Egg Hunt A Success Thanks To Volunteers And Great Community Participation

Cara with the Laurelhurst Community Center sent this follow-up message about this year's Spring Egg Hunt:
Thank you to the several hundred community members who attended our annual spring egg hunt on April 4th, at the Park.  We lucked out with a beautiful day and a great turn out of kids and families.   
Thank you to those families who donated candy and/or eggs.  Over 4,000 eggs were scattered among four age groups, which only took seconds to be swooped up by many little hands!  
A big thank you to all our volunteers and staff for taking the time to come and help make our event a success!   This event relies largely on a great group of volunteers, some veterans and some new, and of course our hard working staff as well.  You left big smiles on the faces of a lot of kids and families and made fun memories for them! 
We hope everyone enjoyed the event and look forward to next year!

Friday, April 10, 2015

Laurelhurst Community Center Open House Tonight

Laurelhurst Community Center
Tonight from 6-8pm the Laurelhurst Community Center, will be holding an Open House, with an opportunity for people to come in and meet instructors, ask questions and see what is offered. 
The invitation says:
Bring the family for an evening of class demonstrations and information.  Meet instructors and learn about the programs we offer you and your family.  Please bring ideas for new programs that we can offer our community! 

·         Toddler Programs – Little Wings Music Song Circle @ 7pm
o   Ballet, Pottery, Sportball, Drop in Play, Little Wings Music
·         Youth Programs and Summer Camps
o   Piano lessons, Nerf Soccer, Pottery, Sportball, Writing Camp, Lego Camp, Sports Camps
·         Adult Programs
o   Pilates, Cardio, Conditioning, Tai Chi, Yoga, American Mahjong, Pottery
·         Pre-K Enrichment Classes
o   Partnership program with LASER Childcare Rising Stars Pre-K Readiness
·         Check out our rental spaces for your next party or event!
o   Birthday Parties, Graduations, Wedding Receptions and more

New Community Driven Radio Stations From Magnuson Go On Air Early Next Year


A new community radio station at Magnuson, serving Laurelhurst and other neighborhoods within 3-5 miles of the park, should be on the air by early 2016, with community-driven non-commercial programs.

SPACE (Sand Point Arts and Cultural Exchange) received an FCC permit to operate a low-power FM radio station, KMGP-LP 101.1 from noon-midnight, seven days a week, operating on the energy of a 100-watt light bulb.

The station will serve Laurelhurst, Lake City, University District, Kirkland and Green Lake.

Sabrina Roach, with Brown Paper Tickets Doer Program, is a fulll time advocate to help the SPACE community radio station, as well as 12 other community radio stations approved by the FCC to serve Puget Sound, as a “philanthropy in action” initiative for healthier communities.  
 She said, “this is big news for everyone in the NE Seattle area.

She added:

Communities are about to have a much larger voice on local airwaves.  Like our public libraries and community centers, community radio offers hands-on access and connection, education and entertainment that feeds and strengthens our neighborhoods.   
It adds another dimension to public services; it acts like ‘community glue,’ building bridges among unlikely groups of people representing different interests and demographics.

Two additional radio stations have applied for low-power radio licenses that would also serve Laurelhurst and other nearby neighborhoods, and are currently awaiting FCC Approval.

They are: 
  • Earth On-the-Air Independent Media / 96.9 FM / Serving: University District, Montlake, Fremont, Capitol Hill, Belltown, Queen Anne, Ravenna, Bryant, Green Lake, Laurelhurst, Windermere, Madison Park and parts of Madrona, Greenwood, Magnolia and Ballard.
  • Fulcrum Community Communications / 107.3 FM / Serving: Ballard, Magnolia, Queen Anne, Fremont, University District, Green Lake, Montlake, Bryant and parts of Greenwood and Capitol Hill.
Here is the full list of proposed broadcast coverage maps and information for all new FCC approved low power FM radio stations, and a place to sign-up for email updates on any of the newly-approved radio stations is available at:
Here is a sample program schedule. Here is how to get involved and donate.

Proposed broadcast coverage maps and information for all stations with FCC construction permits, plus the two additional Seattle-based applicants awaiting FCC approval are here.




Thursday, April 9, 2015

Lop-Eared Rabbit Found

The Laurelhurst Blog received this email:
We found a lop-eared rabbit yesterday evening, Wednesday, April 8th. 
It was nibbling grass on NE 42nd Street near 48th Avenue NE.  
Is anyone missing him?

Please contact for more information.

"Incredible Edible Gardens Class" Saturday At Center For Urban Horticulture

UW Botanic Gardens’ Center for Urban Horticulture (3501 NE 41st Street) is having a class on Saturday from 1-4pm called "Incredible Edible Gardens. Clematis Made Easy." 

The information says:
Growing your own organic food is a delicious way to garden in the Pacific Northwest, but where do you start? Vegetables, berries, and fruit trees do need special care to thrive, but your time and energy will pay off in abundance, great taste, and nutrition. This class will cover what you need to know to grow a fabulous edible garden for years to come. You’ll receive detailed tips on simple design techniques to maximize production, soil building, planting, attracting pollinators, crop rotation, and other strategies to prepare for the growing season.
The cost is $35.  Register Online or call (206-685-8033).

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Sewer Line Repaired At Laurelhurst Elementary After Backing Up Onto Playground


District workmen on playground

Laurelhurst Elementary School recently had a sewer back-up right onto the west side of the South Playground near the basketball courts, close to the corner of NE 45th Street and 46th Avenue NE.

Over the last several months, several areas of the playground were filled with water resulting in large puddles.  The drains did not let the water pass through to allow the water to go down and clear the water from the playground.

Over time, the standing water in one particular large puddle, started smelling of sewage and human waste matter was clearly visible, the Laurelhurst Blog staff was told.

"Finally District workmen showed up and began to try and drain the area" one parent said. "It is unclear why it took so long," he added.

After about two weeks of work and repairs, digging up several areas of the playground and replacing some pipes that had damage, the drains are now once again working and there are no more puddles.

The areas on the playground that were opened up were patched back up with a mixture of rocks and dirt.  About a week ago, the workmen returned covering the gravel like material with asphalt.  

Here are several emails the Blog Staff received:

It is unclear why the Principal took so long to have this matter taken care of. The puddles had been there for months. And it would seem that employees reported it to the Administration, but nothing appeared to happen, until the sewer backed up. It was then workmen were called to look into the underlying problem with the pipes. All the while, students were playing in that area.

Perhaps if the source of the standing water had been looked into when it first started showing up, the work would not have been so extensive and costly to the School and District. 
We count on our School Administration, especially the Principal, to keep our neighbohorod playground healthy and safe and attend to issues in a timely manner, before a child could potentially become ill, in this case from the harmful standing water.  
Finally the really foul smell is gone now and the constant standing water. The smell was extremely strong not only at the playground but in surrounding areas outside of the school.   
Thank you to all the workmen who came out to our school to repair the issue and once again make the entire playground useable for our kids. 
We hope the School Principal will take action quickly when an issue arises so that grave situations like this won't happen again.
It really seemed like a health hazard to have kids playing in and near the large puddles for so long without any attention to this critical issue. What if someone fell in the toxic puddles? Not only do school students use the playground, but the neighborhood at large and we assume there are no health issues.