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Boeing 'eye candy'
4:01 pm
Mon May 7, 2012

10 scenes from aviation history in Boeing’s iPad app

An image from Boeing's new app for iPad.

Boeing launched its new iPad app today – 'Milestones in Innovation.’ The app is free and available on iTunes.

The app carries images and information from nine decades of aviation innovation. You can find 10 of those moments in the story below.

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Child prostitution
2:55 pm
Mon May 7, 2012

50 Mayors urge online escort service to check ages

Mayors of nearly 50 cities across the country are urging Village Voice Media to require identification for people posting escort ads on its Backpage.com — an online ad service that has come under scrutiny from authorities for allegations that it's used to promote child prostitution.

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Cruise ships
12:05 pm
Mon May 7, 2012

Cruise ships sailing from Seattle to Alaska down from 2010 peak

ms Oosterdam at Smith Cove Cruise Terminal in Seattle
Peter McGraw Port of Seattle

The number of cruise ships sailing to Alaska from Seattle remains down from the peak of two years ago.  In 2010, 223 ships made the trip.  This year, 202 ships will sail from Seattle.  It's a slight uptick from last year when 196 ships used Seattle as a homeport during the summer Alaska cruising season.

The Port of Seattle says  revenue from the cruise business remains strong .

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Crime
10:28 am
Mon May 7, 2012

Steve Powell voyeurism trial starting in Wash.

TACOMA, Wash. — The voyeurism and child pornography trial of missing Utah mother Susan Powell's father-in-law is under way with jury selection in Washington state, and Powell's parents are hoping the case sheds some light on her disappearance.

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Space flight
8:32 am
Mon May 7, 2012

Meet the finalists in the Space Needle's trip to space contest

The five finalists in a contest to be sent into space as part of Seattle Needle's 50th anniversary celebration are in Seattle this week.

The final phase of the contest begins Monday morning. The finalists will each face three challenges before the winner is announced on Wednesday. (Meet the finalists after the jump and pick whom you'd send into space.)

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Artscape
4:30 am
Mon May 7, 2012

Getting creative with a very small space

Julie Alpert's Zigzags, Stripes and Shadows
Jennifer Wing KPLU

A tiny space with big ideas. This is the motto of the Telephone Room in Tacoma. It claims to be one of the smallest places in the world where artists display their work.

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Jazz Northwest
1:00 pm
Sun May 6, 2012

Bobby Broom Trio at The Ballard Jazz Festival

Kobie Watkins, drums, and Bobby Broom, guitar at the 2012 Ballard Jazz Festival
Jim Levitt

What better way to celebrate April's Jazz Month than the Tenth Annual Ballard Jazz Festival?  There were four nights featuring drums and guitars, a jazz walk among a dozen venues featuring some of Seattle's top jazz talent, and culminated in a concert which co-billed pianist Orrin Evans' Quartet and The Bobby Broom Trio.  The latter is featured in the first broadcast from this year's festival on Jazz Northwest, Sunday May 6 at 1 pm PDT on 88.5 KPLU and kplu.org.

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Mountain passes
9:09 am
Sun May 6, 2012

State struggles to open some mountain passes due to snow

A spring snowstorm on Cayuse Pass (SR 123) dumped more than a half-foot of snow on the highway. Crews hoped to open the pass on Friday (May 4), but with snow predicted through the weekend, they've had to push it back.
Tom Banse Northwest News Network

OLYMPIA, Wash. – Fresh snow in the mountains has slightly delayed the reopening of one high mountain pass in the Washington Cascades. Highway crews are on track to reopen two other scenic cross state routes before Memorial Day.

What's slowing them down? The snowpack is deeper than average for this time of year in Washington, north Idaho and the northern Oregon Cascades.

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NW arts
8:58 am
Sun May 6, 2012

Montana 'Last Best Place' slogan permanently protected

A roundup of bison in March near Yellowstone National Park in Montana.
The Associated Press

HELENA, Mont. — Sen. Max Baucus says the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has agreed to permanently deny any trademark application for the well-known Montana slogan "Last Best Place."

The phrase was first popularized as the title of a 1988 anthology co-edited by writers William Kittredge and Annick Smith.

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Environment
8:41 am
Sun May 6, 2012

Valuable trees attacked in Seattle arboretum

Authorities say vandals have destroyed eight recently planted trees in Seattle's Washington Park Arboretum.

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Zoos
1:52 pm
Fri May 4, 2012

Wild pigs are in hog heaven at the Woodland Park Zoo

Visayan Warty Pigs
Woodland Park Zoo

Wild pigs are making their debut at Seattle's Woodland Park Zoo this weekend. Domestic pigs have long been a fixture at the zoo's Family Farm, but this is the first time wild pigs have been on display.

Three critically endangered Visayan warty pigs are moving into Elephant Forest exhibit near the elephant pool.

Two warthogs are taking up residence in the 4.5 acre African Savanna exhibit, which also includes giraffe, hippos, gazelles, zebras and monkeys. 

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Jazz & Blues
12:45 pm
Fri May 4, 2012

Son House's masterpiece 'Death Letter' tracked through time

His life reads like a blues song … 1920’s, a young preacher playing the blues, despite his church’s opposition. Kills a man in self-defense, 2 years in prison, and comes out to team up with the best-known blues man of the day, Charley Patton.

After limited commercial success of his own, he fades from view, working on farms and railroads. Thirtyfive years later, some dedicated blues fans track him down and he begins performing around the world, finally getting recognition as a blues master.

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Weather with Cliff Mass
10:16 am
Fri May 4, 2012

NW spring weather has made us crabby for ... well ... a long time

Early Steilacoom - residents then were anxious to see the sun on a regular basis as we are.

Today, KPLU's weather expert Cliff Mass and science reporter Keith Seinfeld touch on the forecast – cloudy through most of Saturday, then getting better through Monday – and then take up a common thread throughout NW weather history: grousing.

Here's a weather report from 1855 published in the Puget Sound Courier:

"Well, March went out, April came in, and with it, cold, wet, disagreeable weather, and a universal spirit of discontent, and a disposition to 'growl'"

"Throughout the entire month, and even up to this, the last day of May, it has been precisely the same, and some amongst us profess to be so thoroughly disgusted with the weather .... that they threaten to leave the Territory altogether."

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Arts
5:05 am
Fri May 4, 2012

Playing at Lincoln Center: Ballard High, 2 other Seattle area schools

Members of the Ballard High School jazz band, which is one of 15 finalists in the Essentially Ellington High School Jazz Band competition.
Photo by Florangela Davila

The most prestigious high school jazz band competition begins today in New York City.  And among the 15 finalists are three local competitors: Roosevelt, Mountlake Terrace and newcomer Ballard High School.

"I think we surprised a lot of people," says Ballard's jazz band director Michael James, about being a finalist in the Essentially Ellington jazz band competition. "But I knew if we were able to get into this festival it would put us on people's radar and say, 'Hey, what's going on at Ballard?'"

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I Wonder Why ... ?
1:38 am
Fri May 4, 2012

Why the Alaskan fishing fleet is based in Seattle

AP Photo

On the reality TV show “The Deadliest Catch,” you see the crew of the Northwestern enduring storms and other dangers while crab fishing in the Bering Sea in the middle of winter.

You might be surprised to learn that the Northwestern and the hundreds of other boats that make up the North Pacific Fishing Fleet are not based in Alaska. Rather, they travel thousands of miles south each year to tie up in Seattle.

So, why is the fleet based here? There certainly are more convenient ports closer to the fishing grounds. The reasons have to do with water, weather and people. Oh, and tradition plays a part.

Read more on I Wonder Why ...?

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