The Poverty Bay Wine Festival will return to where it all began next Friday and Saturday, March 6–7, at the newly remodeled Des Moines Beach Park Auditorium.

For the past decade, the Des Moines Rotary Club, (now known as the Des Moines-Normandy Park Rotary Club) has held its largest annual fundraising event – the Poverty Bay Wine Festival – to raise funds for important projects like the Highline Music4Life™ Program and many others.

This year the club will celebrate its 11th year at the newly remodeled historic Des Moines Beach Park Auditorium at Des Moines Beach Park – the location of the very first Poverty Bay Wine Festival!

To purchase tickets online, click here.

Wine Festival Committee Chair and renowned wine aficionado Ric Jacobson had this to say about returning to where it all started:

“We are extremely excited to be returning to this beautiful venue. The renovations and back drop allow for the perfect setting for those who attend to get a much more intimate engagement with the stars of the show, the wine makers. I’d like to personally thank all of those who have attended over the years, and to all of those intending on joining us; for supporting Des Moines-Normandy Park Rotary.”

One of the key benefactors of funds raised at events like the Poverty Bay Wine Festival is the Highline Music4Life program. This program aids the Highline School District in providing instruments for children who otherwise couldn’t afford them.

The President and CEO of the Highline Music4Life™ Program, David Endicott spoke about the impact of those who attend this event:

“Highline Music4Life™ serves the students of low income families in the Highline School District. Within just the last month, we have been able to deliver nearly 100 ready-to-play musical instruments for use by Highline students. The Poverty Bay Wine Festival is so very important to the work of the Des Moines-Normandy Park Rotary Club. We would be lost without public support for this Rotary Club and this event.”

This years event will feature 22 of Washington States Finest Wine Makers. Friday night’s entertainment will showcase the delightful soft sounds of French Café Music styling of the band Rouge, and Saturday’s Music will feature the subtle strums of Classical, Spanish and Jazz Guitarist Julian Catford.

As always, 100% of the net revenues generated by this event are used to fund the charitable activities of the Des Moines-Normandy Park Rotary Club including the Des Moines Food Bank, Student scholarships, helping disadvantage youth participate in park and rec programs, Shelter boxes, Coats for Children, Dictionaries for 3rd graders, Helping Homeless Youth.

Free parking and a free shuttle service will run from the Des Moines Marina to the Wine Festival both days.

Advanced Wine Festival Tickets priced at just $35.00 includes ten tasting tokens (tastings range from 1 – 3 tokens). Additional tasting tokens available for $1.00.

Designated Driver tickets can also be purchased for $15.00 at the door.

Attendees must be 21 or over to attend, and IDs will be checked at the door.

The Poverty Bay Wine Festival will take place:

  • Friday, March 6: 5 – 10 p.m.
  • Saturday, March 7: Noon – 9 p.m.

Des Moines Beach Park Auditorium is located at 22030 Cliff Ave South (map here).

Tickets can be purchased at the door while availability lasts, but advanced tickets can be secured online here, or at the following Des Moines locations:

  • B&E Meats
  • Auntie Irene’s
  • Des Moines Drugs
  • Normandy Perk
  • Key Bank – Des Moines Branch
  • Normandy Park Market
  • The Print Place

[EDITOR’S NOTE: This column by Earl Gipson is a view of SeaTac city government. It does not necessarily reflect the views of The SeaTac Blog nor its staff. We are seeking additional regular columnists to reflect different opinions and views of SeaTac residents. Those interested can e-mail us at]

by Earl Gipson

Lets start with some serious stuff for a change…

New Utility Tax
Why is you’re new (shoved down our throats) 6 percent Utility Tax more than 6 percent (look at your bills)? Mine showed 6.25 percent for PSE and 6.371 percent for my phone bill. I, and others, filed a complaint with the WUTC (Washington Utilities/Transportation Committee). The explanation was that the 6 percent tax collected by the City is considered revenue for the Utilities and that is taxed by the state and passed on to the consumer. A tax on a tax. Lovely. Didn’t hear THAT in the Council Meetings.

New Fire Station #45
The new # 45 Fire Station was given a go in Tuesday’s Study Session (Consent Agenda for next Council Meeting). This time the City will not be the General Contractor as in Station #46. Mucked that up good so the City will only be the Project Manager with no illegal raises or maladies of the last one (we hope).

You’ve Been Warned (now the humor, at least to me)
In Public Comments, Citizen Vicki Lockwood was warned by un-elect Mayor Gregerson not to complain about a particular Council Member’s excessive travel expenses (Kathryn Campbell). Hint: When complaining about one of the Council Member’s actions/inactions, use general terms until your very last sentence when speaking at the Council Meeting. Then name them or at least imply them. Too late to call a Point of Order, its out there for the record, and you can smile walking away from the podium. Its kind of like “the jury will disregard those last remarks.” They really don’t, and again, too late. You can also write a Letter to the Editor, the Council, and/or comment to this column. They REALLY hate when it’s in writing/documented.

Queen Gregerson should have learned by now we can all play and their #2 don’t smell like roses. Stop trying to enforce rules against Citizens until you can abide by them yourselves.

Like We Care
In Council Comments, un-elected Mayor Gregerson brought up having Town Hall meetings. You know what that means? Must be a re-election year! Gregerson, Bush, Terry Anderson, and Ladenburg are all up for re-election so expect them to be all up in your face. The Cabal tried Coffee Chats one election year but some blunt Citizens would not be silenced so watch the next attempt be someplace they can control the time frames/questions. They listen, they nod their heads, and then do nothing for 3 1/2 years and then have Town Hall meetings again, feigning concern. I will be there for the entertainment and material for this column.

Running for Office
If you are considering running to replace one of Council Members, this is the time to start attending the meetings, learning the procedures, reading the Council Packets, and educating yourself on all the fun paperwork for the PDC, etc. It isn’t hard (nor should be replacing some Council Members) and you can concentrate on actual campaigning if you do these things in advance. More on this as we get closer to the filing deadline/window in June.

STB Real Estate Sponsor Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Northwest’s Open House – set for both this Saturday and Sunday from Noon–3 p.m. – is a classic Daylight/Basement rambler in Burien!

This home is spacious inside, with 2600 square feet, and 3 or 4 bedrooms.

Close to freeways and shopping, minutes to downtown, this home has refinished hardwood floors, updated Kitchen, newer roof, new carpet, new interior paint, and new flooring in bathrooms.

Large entertainment/BBQ deck overlooks a spacious yard with great territorial views.

The downstairs is HUGE!

Den/Bonus room, Family room, 4th/MIL possible and lots of storage – hurry on this one!

Here are some pics (click images to see larger versions/slideshow):













Here are the details:

WHAT: Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Northwest Open House

WHEN: Saturday, Feb. 28 and Sunday, Mar. 1: Noon – 3 p.m.

WHERE: 14441 5th Ave S Burien, WA 98168


  • List Price: $299,950
  • MLS Number: 747814
  • Bedrooms: 4
  • Bathrooms: 1.5
  • Year Built: 1958
  • Approximate House SqFt: 2,600
  • Lot Square Footage: 8,951

Site Features:

  • Cable TV
  • Deck
  • Fenced-Fully
  • Garage-Attached

Marketing remarks:

Don’t street appraise! This home is priced to sell!

Classic Daylight/Basement rambler is spacious inside, 2600 sq ft 3 or 4BR.

Close to fwys & shopping, minutes to downtown, refinished hardwood floors, updated Kitchen, newer roof, new carpet, new interior paint, & new flooring in bathrooms.

Large entertainment/BBQ deck overlooking spacious yard w/great territorial views.

Downstairs is HUGE!

Den/Bonus room, Family room, 4th/MIL possible and lots of storage! Hurry on this!

Click here to see the full, detailed listing.

Click here to view all of Berkshire Hathaway’s Open Houses.


Aacres will be holding an onsite hiring event on Thursday, March 5:

Aacres was founded in 1974 on the philosophy of providing individualized community supports for people with developmental disabilities. We believe that people can live in and contribute to their community when provided with appropriate supports.

The ability to identify needs and build programs to meet those needs is what sets Aacres apart from other providers. We have pioneered several programs to fill the needs of previously un-served or underserved populations. We understand the need to develop new innovative programs that meet the unique and ever changing demands of people in the community.

We have a strong commitment to serving people which is the cornerstone of our strength and success. Accepting people with respect and creativity enhances our ability to stand beside them through the difficult times in the lives.

“We believe that in order to serve the community, we must first provide opportunities for personal growth for both our clients and staff”


Direct Support Professionals
The Direct Support Professional assists individuals with basic living skills, communication, community interaction and recreation. Focus is on maintaining a clean, safe, stimulating living environment, providing transportation and supporting individuals to become active members of their communities.


  • At least 18 years of age
  • High school diploma or equivalent
  • Valid driver’s license, insurance and reliable transportation, strongly preferred
  • A strong desire to enrich lives
  • Able to satisfy a background check and comply with the company’s drug free workplace policy.

We Offer:

  • Paid time off (PTO)
  • A fun, creative work environment
  • Advancement opportunities
  • Paid training
  • Healthcare Benefits for Full-Time employees
  • 401(k)

Please join us on Thursday, March 5, from 11 a.m. – 3 p.m.:

2414 SW Andover St. Ste. D-120
Seattle, WA 98106


STB Real Estate Sponsor Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Northwest’s Open House – set for this Sunday from 1–4 p.m. – is a move-in ready, one-bedroom condo in the Viewcrest Community priced at just $129,950!

This 2006 built, two-level condo has its own garage and utility room.

It’s also got a nice view deck.

Here are some pics (click images to see larger versions/slideshow):
















Here are the details:

WHAT: Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Northwest Open House

WHEN: Sunday, Feb. 22: 1 – 4 p.m.

WHERE: 4035 S 212th Ct., Unit D, SeaTac, WA 98198


  • List Price: $129,950
  • MLS Number: 744774
  • Bedrooms: 1
  • Bathrooms: 1
  • Year Built: 2006
  • Approximate House SqFt: 802

Site Features:

  • Dishwasher
  • Range/Oven
  • Balcony/Deck/Patio
  • Insulated Windows
  • Top Floor

Marketing remarks:

Move-in Ready! Viewcrest Community!

2006 Built two-level condo with its own garage and utility room.Nice view deck.1 bedroom, 1 bath.

Seller will finance qualified buyers:owner occupied 5% down, non owner 20% down, 3.99% interest, 30 yr fixed no closing costs except pre-paids and insurance.Subject to underwriting and credit approval.

1 year basic Fidelity Home Warranty Included.

Form 35P required for all pre-inspections.

Sold as-is, buyer has right to inspect, but no repairs will be made by seller.

Click here to see the full, detailed listing.

Click here to view all of Berkshire Hathaway’s Open Houses.

The public is invited to come learn about plans for the future of Sea-Tac Airport on Wednesday, March 4, from 5 to 7 p.m. at Mount Rainier High School, located at 22450 19th Ave. S. in Des Moines.

At this open house, you will hear from Port of Seattle staff and consultants about proposed concepts for sustainably accommodating forecast air travel demand at Sea-Tac, and have an opportunity to share your ideas.

Here’s more info from the Port:

This long-term blueprint for airport development is called Sea-Tac’s Sustainable Airport Master Plan. It aims to meet the needs of the traveling public over the next 20 years in a way that takes the most sustainable approach possible. This includes reducing environmental impacts, ensuring economic performance and working with local communities. The plan covers airfield development within the current three-runway configuration, terminal development, roadway improvements, cargo and facility modernization and expansion possibilities. Impetus for this planning effort is continued strong passenger growth at the airport, which served more than 37 million passengers in 2014.

Forecasts show this figure could be 52 million in 2024 and 66 million in 2034.

In addition to forecasting, this planning process is taking stock of current facilities, infrastructure, operations and passenger levels, and looking at scenarios that are five, 10 and 20 years in the future. It includes air quality, energy and water conservation, recycling and other strategic environmental goals, and will align with the port’s Century Agenda sustainability and energy efficiency goals.

Completion of the plan will make Sea-Tac the first large hub U.S. airport to fully incorporate sustainability as a key master planning component.

Along with the future demand forecast and some early concepts for meeting the demand, the March 4 presentations will explain the process for creating and evaluating concepts and selecting the preferred choice or choices. Similar public meetings in other communities will follow during 2015. An environmental review process—including public involvement — is scheduled for 2016, before the plan is finalized.

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When disaster calls – how will you respond?

The City of SeaTac, Burien & Kent RFA are offering the FEMA-sponsored Community Emergency Response Team training at no charge, starting April 16, 2015.

Following a large scale emergency, professional responders may not be immediately available as they are tasked with multiple priorities. Through CERT training, individuals and organizations learn life-saving response skills to help each other until professionals arrive.

CERT includes 21 hours of training, plus a simulated disaster drill. Topics include the following:

  • Hazard Identification & Disaster Preparedness
  • Incident Command Systems and Team Organization  Fire Safety and Suppression
  • Light Search and Rescue
  • Simple Triage
  • Disaster Medical Operations
  • Terrorism Awareness
  • Disaster Psychology and Emotional Impacts
  • Comprehensive Final Drill

Classes run each Thursday from 6 – 9 p.m. for seven weeks.

The final drill and graduation are held on Saturday, May 30 from 9 a.m.- 1 p.m.

Participants must attend all classes and the drill in order to receive a certificate of completion.

The next CERT class starts on Thursday, April 16. Cost is FREE!

Register by contacting: Community Service Officer (CSO) Mechee Burnett at 206.973.4917 or

Rep. Mia Gregerson, who also serves as Mayor for SeaTac, released a statement this week endorsing a simple majority for school bonds.

Currently, a supermajority of 60 percent is required to pass school bonds in the state of Washington.

The Highline Public Schools bond on the Feb. 10 ballot is failing with just 54.76%.

Here’s Gregerson’s statement:

“I was greatly saddened to see yet another school construction bond fail this week. The Highline School District’s buildings are overcrowded and in desperate need of repair.

Here are the numbers:

  • 1,500 new students in the last five years, with more coming
  • 60 portable classrooms now in use
  • 232 school construction bonds have gotten more than 50 percent of the vote from 1999 to 2013, yet they all failed because of the supermajority requirement

The current system is broken. Why is 54.6 percent a landslide for a politician, yet a failure for our public schools?

The majority of voters in the Highline School District said yes to a new school construction bond. Yet it won’t happen.

Our children deserve better. Our children are worthy of learning in real classrooms and schools, not converted broom closets and leaky trailers. Real classrooms don’t have wheels.

It’s time for a change. That is why I and large group of my colleagues have introduced new legislation, HB 1941, to allow school bonds to pass on a simple majority in November Elections.

I believe all voters deserve to have their voice heard in our democracy. November Elections have greater turnouts than special elections. And 50 percent plus one is democracy. A simple majority was passed for school levies in 2008. Today, simple majority for bonds makes sense given new mandate to reduce class size.

I look forward to a productive conversation at the public hearing of this bill on Monday, February 16th at 1:30 in the Education Committee. I am confident I can work with colleagues on both sides of the aisle to pass this important bill for Washington’s children.”

Former students of Darcy M. Smith – an award-winning McMicken Heights Elementary School Teacher accused of raping a 14-year old student – showed up at a King County courtroom Thursday to offer support as she entered a plea of ‘Not Guilty’ to charges of child rape.

KIRO-TV reported that supporters carried signs that said “We stand by you” as well as stating they don’t believe the allegations against her.

Smith was awarded “Regional Teacher of the Year” in 2012.

As we previously reported, the 41-year old teacher is accused of having sex with a student she took into her home as a troubled 12-year old boy. He said they started having sex two years later. The victim – who is now 19 – reported the incidents last year.

Smith was put on leave in August when the Highline School District learned of the investigation.

She is free without bail until her next court appearance, set for March 12.

[EDITOR’S NOTE: This column by Earl Gipson is a view of SeaTac city government. It does not necessarily reflect the views of The SeaTac Blog nor its staff. We are seeking additional regular columnists to reflect different opinions and views of SeaTac residents. Those interested can e-mail us at]

by Earl Gipson

Humor is getting more difficult when attending SeaTac’s Council meetings but I do give it a shot when embedded in it is really serious stuff. What we have elected is a cabal of people with personal agendas where the Citizens of SeaTac are their secondary concern (if at all). Money talked and outside special interests outspending opponents 7 to 1 in 2011 reflects the Council majority we are living with now. I have outlined that in previous columns so lets get with the humor.

I can always find humor with Council Member Ladenburg who, in New Business, stumbled through un-elected Mayor Gregerson’s assignment to push a resolution opposing STATE House Bill #1934 and STATE Senate Bill #5223. He didn’t know the bill numbers (had to ask the City Manager), their content, and appeared to not have even read any of them. He also kept glancing at Gregerson for visual/verbal clues (forgetting he was clueless). These are very short bills and he didn’t even have them in front of him. You could hear and see the reactions of the Citizens in the audience. It was a mix of disgust and laughter. I was torn between the two but disgust won the day.

To Council Member Bush’s credit he did not go along with the program (yet, anyway) and requested the ridiculous resolution tabled till next Council meeting. He apparently did not get the cabal’s memo and was as surprised as the Citizens attending the meeting. Next meeting ought to be good once he is briefed by his buddies and told how high to jump when asked.

I guess we can look forward to this Council voting on resolutions to ban world hunger, protect the Brazilian Rain Forest, and the price of fish while SeaTac Code Enforcement, illegal parking, and crime are given lip service. Focus people.

Mr. Ladenburg provided further mirth when giving a committee report. He rattled off all the important people that were at his committee meetings and what they said. It sounded more like name dropping and I think my eyes glazed over when he mentioned Beyonce, Elvis, and John Wayne’s comments.

Ever absent Council Member Tony Anderson gave his phoned in report from Timbuktu and why he so important. Tune in to the next Council meeting for his version of Where’s Waldo.

With the cabal fulfilling its outside political obligations un-elected Mayor Gregerson adjourned this farce she oversees with her stoic (possibly medicated) look.

Wish all this was a joke but as you can see by Citizen Vicki Lockwood’s Letter to the Editor below it is not. Thank you Ms. Lockwood. I could not have said/wrote it better.