Pineapple Express
8:21 am
Mon December 13, 2010

Monday morning headlines

Flooding near Granite Falls, Snohomish County, on Sunday, Dec. 12, 2010. Most rivers are receding today, but officials are keeping an eye on the Snohomish River, which will crest at near record levels Monday.
Twitpic/PeterM_KOMO

Floods and mudslides follow heavy rains, commuters can expect delays, and Seattle counts the landslides.

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Pineapple Express
8:01 am
Mon December 13, 2010

Record rains flood western Washington rivers

Flooding along the Stillaguamish River near Arlington, in Snohomish County.
KOMO TV via YouTube

Record rainfall in the Pacific Northwest has triggered mudslides and caused record flooding along some Western Washington rivers.  As many rivers recede this morning, some are still cresting, including the Snohomish River, where water levels are expected to remain above flood stage through Tuesday.

The Herald of Everett reports the Snohomish is being fed by the flooding Snoqualmie and Tolt rivers:

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Holiday Season
7:11 am
Mon December 13, 2010

Gift cards on wish list for Adopt-a-Family programs

Adopt-a-Family programs say kids benefit when parents can pick gifts that meet their needs
Solid Ground

With the holiday shopping season in full swing, local non-profits want to make sure needy families are on your list.  Several charities are collecting toys and clothes for people who can’t afford presents, but a few Adopt-a-Family programs ask donors to give something more than stuff. 

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Seattle World's Fair Anniversary
5:15 am
Mon December 13, 2010

Fun Forest future undecided

The Fun Forest at the Seattle Center.
Flickr/Life As Art

The decision about what will replace the Fun Forest at Seattle Center is still up in the air. This fall, a review panel recommended converting it into an exhibition space celebrating local glass artist Dale Chihuly.

That proposal promises millions in much-needed revenue. But the backers of several other ideas haven’t given up hope.

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Cancun Climate Conference
4:18 am
Mon December 13, 2010

Looking forward from Cancun

Greenpeace activists form the word hope as a question with their bodies, next to a giant life saver, during a demonstration near the site of the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Cancun, Mexico, Friday, Dec. 10, 2010.
AP

It was time to put up or shut up. Delegates to the United Nations climate conference in Cancun knew if they came out of the talks empty-handed, the whole effort to reach a global warming treaty could collapse. The agreement that emerged over the past weekend made just enough progress to keep the talks alive for another year.

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State Budget Crisis
9:13 pm
Sat December 11, 2010

Lawmakers convene to address budget gap

It was short and bittersweet. Washington lawmakers convened Saturday in a rare, lame duck special session. Their job: take a bite out of the billion dollar hole in the current two-year budget. Lawmakers passed three pieces of legislation. 

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Weather
4:39 pm
Fri December 10, 2010

Pineapple Express brings flooding on Sunday

Forecast from the U.W. showing an "atmospheric river" bringing wet clouds from the tropical Pacific (in the lower left) to the Northwest coast
UW/Dpt. of Atmospheric Sciences (http://www.atmos.washington.edu/mm5rt/)

A big rainstorm is headed to western Washington this weekend.  Forecasters say Saturday should start out pleasant, with the rainstorm hitting south Puget Sound in the late morning, and the Seattle area by around noon.

It’s not supposed to be as bad as devastating storms a few years ago, but flooding is likely on some rivers. 

There are a few rivers in western Washington that flood regularly – such as the Skokomish and the Tolt.  This year, you can add one more to that list, a section of the Puyallup River in eastern Pierce County.

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Weather
1:31 pm
Fri December 10, 2010

More sanders for the next snowstorm

WSDOT snowplows on I-5 during the November snowstorm
WSDOT

The Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) is preparing for the next snowstorm in the Puget Sound Region with the addition of eight new "mini-sander" pickup trucks.  The trucks are being turned into sanders with the addition of hoppers and equipment mounted on the tailgates.

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Seattle Mariners
11:45 am
Fri December 10, 2010

Dave Niehaus 'life celebration' Saturday at Safeco Field

Famed Mariner broadcaster Dave Niehaus waves to fans at Safeco Field, May 7, 2000, upon the announcement of his induction to Baseball's Hall of Fame. A public memorial for Niehaus, who died last month, will take place on Saturday, Dec. 11th.
AP

The Seattle Mariners will hold a “Public Celebration of Life” for late broadcaster Dave Niehaus tomorrow.  Scheduled start is just after 1 p.m. Saturday at Safeco Field. 

Family, players and close associates will pay tribute to Niehaus, the only play-by-play announcer the team has ever had.  He died of a heart attack last month at the age of 75. 

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Groove Notes
10:44 am
Fri December 10, 2010

‘JAZZ: The Smithsonian Anthology’ to be released in March

Seven years in the making, ‘JAZZ: The Smithsonian Anthology’ will be released by Smithsonian Folkways on March 29th, 2011.

The six-CD box set traces the turning points of this 20th-century tale through its legendary innovators and exemplary exponents: Armstrong, Ellington, Basie, Parker, Gillespie, Davis, Hancock, Corea, Coltrane and many more. The set opens with Scott Joplin’s 1899 “Maple Leaf Rag” and spans the entire century, closing with Tomasz Stańko’s 2003 “Suspended Night Variation VIII.”

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Seattle World's Fair Anniversary
8:43 am
Fri December 10, 2010

Ferris wheel plans pit Seattle Center against Pier 57

A modern-style 200-foot Ferris wheel, reminiscent of Britain's London Eye (shown here), is coming to Seattle Center in April for the 50th anniversary of the 1962 World's Fair.
AP

A futuristic Ferris Wheel is causing a flap in Seattle. 

The Seattle Center has announced  it is planning to install an extra-tall "observation wheel" reminiscent of the British capital's London Eye.  It will go up in April and remain for 18 months on the site of the Fun Forest for the Center's 50th anniversary, commemorating the 1962 World's Fair. 

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Cancun Climate Conference
8:40 am
Fri December 10, 2010

Ocean acidification: Global warming's evil twin

Commercial fishermen and other mariners join together to send an urgent message to save the oceans from ocean acidification caused by fossil fuel emissions in Homer, Alaska, Sunday Sept. 6, 2009. Boaters and fishers took part in the protest.
AP/Lou Dematteis-SpectralQ

The focus of attention at the U.N. climate summit in Cancun, Mexico is global warming caused by too much carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. But there’s another impact of high carbon levels that poses a whole different set of problems: it makes the ocean more acidic.

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Sports with Art Thiel
7:26 am
Fri December 10, 2010

UW will have emotional edge in Holiday Bowl

UW quarterback Jake Locker is tackled during a game against Nebraska at Husky Stadium on Sept. 18, 2010. Washington lost 56-21.
AP

The Washington Huskies may be all smiles when it comes to preparing for the Holiday Bowl on December 30th.  But that’s not the case for their opponent, Nebraska.  Sports commentator Art Thiel tells KPLU's Kirsten Kendrick the Cornhuskers are suffering from a double case of Déjà Vu. 

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Technology and Democracy
7:19 am
Fri December 10, 2010

Local debate on secret information and Wikileaks

A protester in Australia makes a statement about the Wikileaks release of secret government documents. It's sparked international debate, and is the focus of a Seattle forum tonight.
AP

Was it justified when Amazon.com and the big credit card companies pulled the plug on Wikileaks?  Did it hurt the free flow of information, or advance important dialogue about world affairs? A discussion in Seattle this evening will dive into those questions. 

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Arts & Culture
7:10 am
Fri December 10, 2010

Festival preserves legacy of Washington native Bing Crosby

Tacoma-born Bing Crosby was raised in Spokane. Crosby was the state's most famous export for decades. He's pictured here in a 1958 recording session.
AP

There are certain songs and films that are so ubiquitous they just scream the holidays are here. Some feature a legendary Washington native, Bing Crosby. The Christmases he used to know were in Spokane. This weekend the city hosts the Bing Crosby Film Festival, featuring “White Christmas” and “Road to Morocco.” But an equally strong draw is the promise of long-lost footage showing other dimensions of the Hollywood star.

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