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Gary Davis / KPLU

"I just phoned our son up in Bellingham and said, get ready for the wedding."

Washington United for Marriage has declared victory in the same-sex marriage referendum. Maine and Maryland became the first states to approve same-sex marriage by popular vote last night.

“This is a clear win,” the group's campaign manager Zach Silk said in a press release.

“We have run the numbers every which way, and we can now confidently say that we have won. This is an historic day for Washington, an historic day for our country and, most of all, for families across the state who have dreamed of this day and the wedding celebrations to come.”

So far, official “Yes” votes have a slight advantage of 52 to 48 percent. Counties were expected to post additional vote results Wednesday afternoon.

However the group said in the press release:

With 60 percent of the vote counted, R74 already has the support of 65 percent of King County and is performing well in key Eastern Washington counties.  Simply put, it’s now impossible for opponents to overcome the 52-48 percent spread for R74.

Video: KPLU videographer David Kellogg captured the hopes and tensions of election night as one same-sex couple waited for elections results:

David J. Phillip / AP Images

If the backers of a plan to build a new sports arena in Seattle's SoDo area are successful, they'll be looking to attract both a professional hockey club and a professional basketball team as marquis tenants.

Seattle and King County lawmakers are poring over the proposal's details. In the coming weeks they'll cast votes on the arena plan, its call for up to $200 million in public bonds (to be paired with $300 million in private funds), a plan championed by investor Chris Hansen.

Update Wed., March 23, 12:00 p.m.

Gonzaga will play Louisville in the Sweet 16 round of the NCAA women's college basketball tournament. Saturday's game in Spokane begins at 6 p.m.

The first college basketball player to score 2,000 career points and rack up 1,000 assists is a 5'8" Gonzaga guard who last night helped lead her team into the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Women's championships. Courtney Vandersloot led the Bulldogs upset of UCLA in Spokane, 89-75.

Gonzaga's victory ensured their next tournament game would be in front of a hometown crowd in the NCAA's Spokane regional. They will face the winner of tonight's Xavier-Louisville contest on March 26th. 

Vandersloot scored 29 points against the Bruins, 21 of them in the second half, and tallied 17 assists. Teammate Kayla Standish scored 30, and Gonzaga won it's 20th consecutive game. 

We've said it before and we'll say it again: Having guitarist/vocalist/storyteller, John Pizzarelli, as a guest in the KPLU studios is always great fun. He loves making music, he loves telling stories and he loves entertaining his fans.

When he visited us recently for this performance/interview with Abe Beeson, several members of the KPLU Leadership Circle attended the event, and John Pizzarelli played to this small group the same way he'd play to a full house at Lincoln Center.

Elaine Thompson / AP Photo

The future might be a bit brighter for aerospace workers in the Puget Sound region. Boeing Commercial Airplanes chief Jim Albaugh says the company can still find customers for its wide-body 767. He says the line won't be shut down, even if Boeing doesn't win the competition to build refueling tankers for the U.S. Air Force.

Change in stance

Herald of Everett via YouTube

Maybe you don't ski or snowboard, or even particularly like the snow. But there's so much enjoyment from watching the beautiful images captured by Herald of Everett reporters on Wednesday.  It was opening day at Stevens Pass.

AP (Elaine Thompson)

A new plan to deal with traffic-jamming snow and ice on the roads, A Fort Lewis-based soldier gets a court martial plea deal, no special session agreement - yet, and Grammy nods for Northwest bands.

Flickr photo by Rutlo

Cornish College will welcome its first woman president since the arts school was established by Nellie Cornish in 1914.  Dr. Nancy Uscher will leave her position as provost of the California Institute of the Arts (CalArts) and join the Seattle arts school in August next year.

MultifaithWorks.org

Thousands to lose jobless benefits, Tacoma finds limits to saving Old City Hall, and today is World AIDS Day.

Wikimedia Commons

The historic Neptune, a 90-year old U District movie palace, will soon be a showcase for live performances. Seattle Theatre Group announced it will take over the Neptune's lease from Landmark Theatres in February. STG plans to do some upgrades, according to the Puget Sound Business Journal:

AP (Ted S. Warren)

Worries over Tacoma's historic Old City Hall,  over state pension funds, and a big snowstorm in the Cascades and eastern Washington.

KCPQ TV

Seattle City Light is apologizing to a Queen Anne neighborhood family whose dog was electrocuted Thanksgiving Day while on a walk along a city sidewalk. Lisa McKibben tells KCPQ-TV she wasn't sure what had happened at first:

“I couldn't tell because he was just convulsing so much and just screeching I didn't know what was happening and I was screaming for someone to help me,” said McKibbin.

Erin Hennessey/KPLU

Glamour Barbie dolls, pink poodles, and the fishnet stockinged-leg lamp popularized in the movie A Christmas Story are part of the festive view at Seattle's downtown Westin Hotel.

City of Lakewood, Washington

Honoring the 'Lakewood Four', a fire erupts at a Tumwater business, and signs that donations to nonprofits may be on the rise.

Some Maple Leaf area kids intent on extending a warm welcome to the residents of the newest Tent City/Nickelsville site in northeast Seattle are hand-delivering Thanksgiving breakfasts today.

Twitter/@PeterM_KOMO

The lights are back on for thousands of Puget Sound Energy customers this evening. The largest outage area, Kitsap County, saw power restored to all but 13,000. PSE expects many of them to be back online before midnight Wednesday. 

Eliminating the state's health insurance program for the poor is on Governor Chris Gregoire's list of proposed budget cuts.  Her proposal also includes cuts to education programs benefiting gifted children and financial help for revenue-poor school districts.

AP photo/Elaine Thompson

Power outages continue for thousands, Seattle Mayor wants snow response review, and a dedication to the memory of the fallen Lakewood police officers.

Twitter/@JoshFarley

Updated 5:30 am, Wed.

More than 39,000 Puget Sound Energy customers are still without power after Monday's snow and winds toppled main transmission lines. PSE reports  most were in Kitsap County. That's where main transmission lines were brought down by trees and strong winds.

Forecasters say freezing temperatures will be with us through Thanksgiving morning, with the coldest lows of this winterly blast expected tonight. 

Gary Davis/KPLU

Snowplows are working icy Seattle streets this morning after a nightmare Monday snowstorm and deep freeze left many roads impassable. 

Twitpic/@AlvinBN

Sunshine for the deep freeze, winds cause power outages, and roads remain a mess. 

Twitpic/@elise81

If you don't have to be on the roads today you're being asked to stay home. State and local transportation officials around western Washington say conditions remain extremely poor, and won't improve much as the region remains in a deep freeze.

Peter Lewis photo

Update 7:00 am

School districts are making Tuesday plans this evening, as snow continues to fall and treacherous roads make driving hazardous. 

Justin Steyer/KPLU

Temperatures plummeted quickly Monday evening, freezing wet roads already dusted with snow. It's added up to a nightmare commute for many trying to get home.

Twitpic/@ksymer

Monday's snow is wreaking havoc in Pierce County. The conditions have clogged roads with multiple accidents and spinouts, leaving some commuters stranded and affecting public transit operations.

Justin Steyer/KPLU

The people who get paid to worry about our public roads want you to delay any travel plans for a day or two. State transportation officials are asking drivers to stay off the roads today as a cold and snow system pushes through western Washington today.

Gary Davis/KPLU

Snowy weather comes to western Washington, grocery workers reach a tentative contract agreement, and Seattle Schools sudden improvement in graduate's college readiness.

KingCounty.gov

Metro buses will be running on snow routes Monday. It's a precautionary measure due to the threat of snow. The National Weather Service has issued a winter weather advisory, warning of possible snow accumulations during the day on Monday of one to three inches from southwest Washington northward, perhaps as far as Seattle and Everett.

Twitpic/@JerryMoneta

Western Washington is experiencing its coldest temperatures of the season, and it's about to get a lot colder.

The National Weather Service in Seattle has issued a winter weather advisory for much of the state through Monday night. Southwest Washington's interior, through Olympia and perhaps as far north as Seattle, could see snow accumulations of 1 to 3 inches through Monday evening. That's when a second cold front is expected. 

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