Laura Pierce

No dice on Tukwila gambling; Council sets the clock for local casinos to 2016

The days for the Great American Casino - as well as its neighboring card rooms, the Gold Nugget and Riverside Casino - are now numbered. A Feb. 22 vote by the Tukwila City Council has set a closing date of Jan. 1, 2016 for these privately owned casinos. The vote also means that as of 2016, Tukwila will be a casino-free city.


Major road project for Southcenter Parkway in Tukwila starts this month

The pieces are falling into place for a major road project on one of Tukwila's busiest retail streets. The Southcenter Access Project is scheduled to begin later this month, and is expected to stretch into this winter, as work crews reconstruct Southcenter Parkway between Strander Boulevard and Tukwila Parkway (between Westfield Southcenter Mall and Interstate 5.) Mike Ronda, construction project manager for the City of Tukwila, said road closures from this project (portions of Southcenter Parkway and Klickitat Drive) are tentatively scheduled to begin March 28. These will be long-term closures, expected to be lifted by November, when substantial completion has taken place. Even so, there are some visible reminders the project will soon begin: utility providers Puget Sound Energy and Qwest have been relocating equipment in the area, to make way for the street work. Ronda said in recent weeks, utility workers have been out pulling lids from utility vaults in the affected area. And at the southwest corner of the Westfield Southcenter Mall, near the Cheesecake Factory, PSE has backhoes out digging a new vault for utilities.


Pasta Fazole with Louise Jones-Brown: Local Flavor

Louise Jones-Brown may be busy these days, but this recipe of hers could probably save time in the long run, since it makes plenty of leftovers that can be reheated with great results. The reason why she’s so busy? Jones-Brown is the acting director of the Tukwila Heritage and Cultural Center, and chair for the June 26 Tukwila Historical Society Gala and Auction at Foster Golf Links. The gala is the first such fundraising event the historical society has had, and organizers are working hard to drum up support for the event in the Tukwila community.


Museum of Flight in Tukwila launching its own space shuttle mission: To bring one here

Discovery. Endeavor. Enterprise. These are names that have defined the modern-day U.S. space program. Technology today may be measured on the nano scale, and a manned mission Mars may soon be in reach, given our vast technological advances. But amid all that – and operating on machinery that predates even the cell phone in your pocket – these three space craft, indelible fixtures of the U.S. Space Shuttle program, have brought their crews home safe.

Showing generosity of spirit in Tukwila: Editor’s Note

When I walked through the door of the Neighborhood Resource Center Tukwila International Boulevard this month, I was prepared to do a story that was fairly cut-and-dry: The center's upcoming closure, and why it was happening. But when I met Mike Fowler and Rob McKee, the two volunteers behind the counter that day, I realized I had another story on my hands.

Local Flavor: Chemistry in the kitchen; couple shares soup recipe

It was just an e-mail, sent out to the Tukwila Police Department, wishing everyone a happy Thanksgiving.

Tukwila Neighborhood Resource Center on International Boulevard to shut its doors

When Mike Fowler started to volunteer for Tukwila’s Neighborhood Resource Center about 12 years ago, he was surprised at what he could see. Located on Tukwila International Boulevard, the center is home to a bank of readouts from surveillance cameras, running along 20 blocks of the busy road.

Sound Transit not worried about pantless riders organizing for Sunday’s Link Rail trips

There's an unusual public stunt taking place Sunday, Jan. 9, on Sound Transit's Link Rail, but nobody seems to have their panties in a bunch about it.

Tukwila’s Ashley Furniture HomeStore gives Army sergeant and family a holiday shopping spree

When Dennis Childers shipped out for Iraq in 2009, little did he know a fire on the home front would occupy his waking moments in a war zone. The Army sergeant had just left Kuwait for his forward operating base in Iraq when the message came: an electrical fire at his Fort Lewis home had destroyed the home and all his family's possessions.

Tukwila Pantry food bank seeks financial help

For years the Tukwila Pantry has been helping those in need with basic food supplies. Now the local food bank could greatly use some help itself.

Home for Christmas: Burmese refugee family celebrates first Christmas together in Tukwila

In a small apartment on Tukwila International Boulevard, a decorated Christmas tree glows in the living room. On a wall next to the tree, outlined in tiny lights, is a tapestry of Jesus, kneeling in prayer. For the family of seven who lives in this apartment, the tapestry says a lot more about Christmas than does the tree. Led by brother and sister Nga Reh and Tee Meh, and including their mother, Buh Meh, and Tee Meh’s four young daughters, this family of Burmese refugees will spend their first Christmas together again as a family.

Thousands of shoppers head to Tukwila for Black Friday shopping: See the slide show

For Marylyn Bjorn, it was the excitement of fast-paced shopping. "I had to have the experience," the Auburn woman said, as she and her mother-in-law Arlie Bjorn pushed their cartful of gifts out of Toys 'R Us just before midnight Thursday in Tukwila.

Local flavor: Try egg bread for the winter holidays

Every time the cold weather comes around, I begin to think of soup and the holidays. One item that goes beautifully with both is fresh-baked egg bread. With egg bread you can do it all: from dunking it in sweet butternut squash soup to making a gorgeous, glistening loaf that’s a hit at any holiday meals you’re planning. It can even be the basis of a delicious bread pudding.

Coffee with…Mary Koontz and Pam Fernald, founders of Neighbors Without Borders Action Committee

Mary Koontz and Pam Fernald have been living in their neighborhood for a long time. Long enough, in fact, to feel a pang of ownership when they notice unsafe road conditions near their Riverton Heights neighborhood. Or the gradual shift from family-owned homes to rental homes, where the residents are more transitional and properties sometimes aren’t as well-tended.

Come to meeting Nov. 11 to discuss new community garden for Tukwila; Cascade Land Conservancy organizing

The Cascade Land Conservancy is trying to gauge interest in a new community garden for Tukwila. The project could be developed on property owned by St. Thomas Catholic Church, adjacent to Foster High School. Skye Schell, community engagement manager for the Cascade Land Conservancy, said the idea began as a project that the local Burmese refugee community could do, but has since broadened out in scope to potentially include anyone in the Tukwila community who has a love of gardening and agriculture. Just how much community involvement there could be in such a project is what the Cascade Land Conservancy is now trying to determine. "What we really need are people from the community," he said, speaking Thursday. "People willing to step up and fill these roles." With that in mind, the Cascade Land Conservancy has organized a meeting for 6 p.m. Nov. 11 at St. Thomas Church (4415 S. 140th St.) to see how much interest there is for such a garden.

King County Sheriff: Major cuts in store for department; ballot measure would aid criminal justice

King County Sheriff Sue Rahr likens her dilemma to operating a hospital. With $7.2 million to pare from her agency’s budget next year, it will be like “eliminating all preventative care and operating only an emergency room,” she said. Having already cut $10 million out of her budget in the last three years, Rahr said, “the cumulative effect is huge.”

The Tukwila Reporter’s editorial stance on state initiatives

This year the Tukwila Reporter is offering the following suggestions on some of the high-profile state initiatives on the November ballot. The overviews are the consensus of Publisher Polly Shepherd and Editor Laura Pierce.

Duwamish Tribe fights for federal recognition: ‘We’re still here’

The moment is etched in Cecile Hansen’s mind, first with joy, then with anger. It was the day her tribe, the Duwamish, achieved what they had sought for more than 100 years: federal recognition. They received it in the last hours of the Clinton presidency, in an epic moment of acknowledgement Jan. 19, 2001. But in a matter of hours, the incoming Bush administration reversed that recognition on a technicality. It was a flip-flop that put Hansen’s tribe back to Square One in its fight for the opportunities that federal recognition bring.

Tukwila budget hearing draws a crowd, many focused on cuts to fire department

Don't lose Fire Engine 52. That was the resounding message Monday night from full room of Tukwila residents and workers, who came to share their views on budgetary cutbacks to the City of Tukwila.

Patterson speaks about upcoming Town Hall meeting

King County Councilwoman Julia Patterson recently shared her thoughts on an upcoming Town Hall meeting she has scheduled for Sept. 15 in Tukwila at the Foster Performing Arts Center. Titled “Health Reform & You,” its purpose is to shed more light on understanding the Patient Protection and Affordable Health Care Act, passed last year by Congress, and what opportunities it will offer, especially in light of the working poor. King County Councilwoman Julia Patterson has scheduled a Town Hall meeting from 6:30-8:30 p.m. Sept. 15 at the Foster Performing Arts Center, with health-care reform in mind.