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The Issaquah Press
Issaquah, Washington
July 29, 2009     The Issaquah Press
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July 29, 2009

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IIA ||U tlllmll] A2 WEDNESDAY JULY 29 2009 THE ISSAQUAH PRESS BY ADAM ESCHBACH Jose Ramirez pulls down a poplar tree, one of many p)plars that have been dying from canker disease, the rotting of the trees from the inside. Northwest Landscape Services will be cutting down the remaining poplars along Gilman Boulevard and Front Street this week to prevent limbs from crashing on cars and injuring bystanders. Poplars will be replaced with dogwood, gingko trees City crews will remove 25 poplars at the southwest corner of Front Street North and Northeast Gilman Boulevard next week and replace the aging trees with gingko and dogwood trees. The poplars -- planted in 1972 -- usually live for about 35 years. As the trees age and become less healthy, they can pose safety issues. Ginkgos are expected to live for more than 100 years; dogwoods could live for more than 50 years. City officials plan to hire a con- tractor to remove the poplars in small segments. The waste will then be recycled. Crews removed 22 poplars at the northwest corner of the inter- section in October. Because ginkgos have a larger canopy and take up more space, fewer trees will be used. About a dozen new trees will be planted near the intersection. The dogwood species is Eddie's White Wonder -- Issaquah's centennial tree. The poplar replacement is the second phase of a long-range ren- ovation project to replace all. of the poplars at the Front Street North and Northeast Gilman Boulevard intersection. State sets new math rule The State Board of Education has adopted a revised math rule for the class of 2013. Students from that class are the first required to earn three credits of math to receive their high school diploma. The original Washington Administration Code mandated that students who elected to take a high school level mathematics course without cred- it as an eighth-grader were required to repeat that same course for credit in high school. The amendment allows them to use that math credit and take another mathematics course instead or repeat the same math course for credit. The revision allows students eater flexibility in scheduling eir coursework and empowers them to choose the best courses to meet their educational goals. Board members adopted the new rule at their July 17 meeting. Plan for state Route 900 delays through July 31 Expect delays on state Route 900 this week as state Department of Transportation crews reduce traffic to a single lane. Through July 31, crews will direct alternating one-way traffic on state Route 900 from Talus Drive to Newport Way from 9 a.m. - 2 p.m. daily. Crews will also reduce 900 to alternating one-way traffic from 8 p.m. - 5 a.m. nightly through July 31. Crews will cut Talus Drive at 900 to a single lane of alternating traffic from 8 p.m. - 5 a.m. nightly while crews install a water line beneath the Talus Drive intersec- tion. Other closures will occur through December as workers fin- ish the $33.8 million second phase of the project. Phase 2 will widen state Route 900 from Newport Way to Southeast 78th Street. During the completed first phase, the road was widened from Interstate 90 to Newport Way. Be Our Guest] i Please join University House, Issaquah and let us pamper you] Join us for a two nights stay, complimentary*, and make yourself at home with these amenities: Chef inspired and prepared meals Life enrichment and social programs Indoor swimming pool and fitness center Scheduled transportation Housekeeping and linen services Furnished residences Cable television and local phone service On-site salon Well-appointed library Rotating art exhibit Please call today to make your reservation. P.offremont Auoctlon *Two nights stay valued at $190. Offer Expires 9/30/09. Dm Premier Residential Retirement Since z987 University House, Issaquah 22975 SE Black Nugget Road Issaquah, WA 98029 (425) 557-4200 eraliving.com EQU IlOtlm O Coming soon: Issaquah school,' alumni directory BY CHANTELLE LUSEBRINK Issaquah School District officials want to know where you are. Past students can expect phone calls and e-mails from a group called Harris Connect, who district officials and the Issaquah Schools Foundation have chosen to help them update their directory. The listing will compile genera- tions of Issaquah graduates and connect them with fellow alumni throughout the nation and the world. "This is so we can have a con- nection to our alumni, our recent graduates all the way to those that graduated decades and decades ago. This will build a web and unite our alumni," said Sara Niegowski, district director of com- munications. "If they choose to be listed, this book is published so that alumni from near and far can find information in there and con- nect or reconnect." The directory will give district offi- GB INVOLVED If you are an alumnus and would like to proactively confirm your preference and information you can call the Issaquah School District line at Harris Connect at 800-366-6249. cials a chance to make connections to alumni who may have an inter- est in district news and events. All graduates from Issaquah will be contacted in the next week or two to determine whether they would like to be included in the directory and to confirm whether the information officials have is correct. The directory is free to the dis- trict and to the foundation. Harris Connect will sell the directory to alumni and keep the proceeds. "Basically, this directory will help us reach out to alumni that have had great memories and experiences in the Issaquah School District," said Lynn Juniel, director of programming for the founda- tion. "We also hope that it will remind them, as alumni, that they have a great opportunity to sup- port our schools and enable them to endow today's kids with the same outstanding education that they received, by honoring past friends or teachers with a gift to the Issaquah Schools Foundation." The information will not be sold to outside vendors or solicitors, she said. "If anybody is afraid that this is just a phishing scam, it isn't," she said. "We legitimately partnered with them for use of the informa- tion in a specific way and the infor- marion will only be used for that. This is not a company doing some- thing independently." Reach Reporter ChanteUe Lusebrink at 392-6434, ext. 241, or clusebrink@iss- press.com. Comment on this story at www.issaquahpress.com. Free tickets available for POPs! concert BY HUNTER DEIGLMEIER Free tickets are available now for the 14th annual POPs! Goes Issaquah concert, sponsored by Rowley Properties. The concert this year is at 7:30 p.m. Aug. 24 at Village Theatre, 303 Front St. N. The concert will be fun for all individuals and families, and is a great opportunity to experience the arts, according to Rajani Rastogi, of Rowley Properties Inc. The Sammamish Symphony, its conductor R. Joseph Scott and spe- cial guest Maria Mannisto will per- form. Mannisto, the special guest per- former, is a well-rounded, accom- plished opera singer, concert soloist, pianist and organist. She recently received her mas- ter's degree in vocal performance from the University of Washington. She appeared in many University of Washington productions, includ- ing "La Finta Giardiniera!' (Sandrina), "Suor Angelica" (La Zelatrice), and scenes from "Rigoletto" (Gilda) and "La Traviata" (Violetta). In March 2008, she performed for the second rime in composer Tom Baker's series of new operato- rios as Tamsen Donner in "Hunger: The Journey of Tamsen Donner." She has also performed works by Seattle composers Wayne Horvitz, Bill Smith, Garrett Fisher and Brian Cobb. As the 2007 Finlandia Foundation Performer of the Year, Mannisto enjoyed an extensive concert tour across the United States. She directs the Finnish Choral Society of Seattle, and is the primary organist at the Finnish Lutheran Church. "By sponsoring this event, we are providing an opportunity for families and individuals to attend an orchestral event that might not otherwise be able to participate in the arts," said Lisa Cuevas, of Rowley Properties. Tickets are free and available on a first-come, first-served basis from 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. at Rowley Properties, 1595 N.W. Gilman Blvd., Suite 1. No reservations will be taken. Dog ban FROM PAGE A1 Issaquah Highlands resident Layla Loveless arrived at Timberlake Park for a morning walk with her chow, Millie, when she noticed the sign. "I was absolutely gobsmacked to see the sign," Loveless said. Loveless said she and her dog prefer the shaded trail of Timberlake Park to the off-leash Bark Park in the highlands. Bark Park is "a quagmire in win- ter and in the summer it's a baked expanse of earth," Loveless said. Dogs are not allowed in most city parks due to safety and sanitation concerns. The city acquired Timberlake Park -- a j-shaped piece of land nestled against the southern shore of the lake at Northwest Sammamish Road and 182nd Avenue Southeast -- in the 2006 annexation of South Cove. When Timberlake Park was part of unincorporated King County, residents were allowed to walk dogs on leashes on park grounds -- until problems arose. "While many dog owners -- and their pets -- are respectful and cautious, we "need to make sure this park feels safe for all of our users," city Parks & Recreation Director Anne McGill said in a news release. "Timberlake Park was not created as an off-leash dog park. Instead, it was designed and built specifically for humans." McGill could not be reached for further comment before The Press' deadline. When officials announced the switch to the media in a news release July 24, they suggested pet owners instead walk dogs on city streets and trails, at Lake Sammamish State Park, at the Tradition Plateau Natural Resources Conservation Area and trails around Cougar, Tiger and Squak mountains. Bark Park is the only city off-leash dog park in Issaquah. City Parks & Recreation Manager Brian Berntsen said city staffers are focused on educating dog owners to the switch and directing them to dog-friendly ven- ues by handing out pamphlets to dog owners. "1 was absolutely gobsmacked to see the sign." - hyla Loveless "This is all about educating the public as best as we can," Berntsen said. He said McGill received several calls from people in favor of and also opposed to the rule change. Seattleite Jennifer Patterson dis- covered Timberlake Park a few days before the ban went into effect. She gathered friends both human and canine for a return trip to the park July 27. "Let's go back to the awesome park we found," Patterson told them. In the late morning heat, she and two friends ate snacks at a pic- nic table while dogs Bear and Magnet, still wet from a romp in the lake, rested in the shade. Patterson said she was excited about her return to the park, but was surprised to learn about the ban. Other park goers expressed sim: ilar sentiments. During her trip to Timberlake Park, Loveless said she met a woman who "said she was walking her damn dog anyway." Loveless wondered aloud whether a compromise could be reached between dog owners and city officials to rescind or modify the ban. "Surely there's a middle ground," she said. Loveless said she understood the concerns that led to its enactment. "No one wants to see children hurt," she said. Maple Valley resident Denice Muir brought her 14-mouth-old daughter Ava and chihuahua Dobbie to the park to cool off. From a shaded stretch of beach, Muir said dogs she has encountered at the park are trained and well- behaved. Muir said she heads to the park about five times per week. "There has never been a prob- lem," she added. Sidewalk closures ahead during First Stage project Expect sidewalk closures on Front Street North later this sum- mer when crews begin renovation to the Village Theatre First Stage Theatre building. Village Theatre spokeswoman Michelle Sanders said dates had not been determined for sidewalk closures. She said the sidewalks would not be closed during July. Foushee & Associates, a Bellevue construction company, received a permit to close the sidewalk between July and Sept. 25, accord- ing to a city news release. The company also received per- mission to use the alley and train track behind the theater for access during demolition of the old struc- ture and construction of a new First Stage Theatre. Initial plans called for a remodel of the 95-year-old building. After officials learned the building lacked a foundation and had sinking walls, the renovation plans were over- hauled to a $2.8 million effort to upgrade the structure, lighting, sound and ventilation systems.