Subscribe to B-Town Blog feed B-Town Blog
Burien News, Politics, Events, Arts, Entertainment, Music, Videos & More
Updated: 2 hours 8 min ago

REMINDER: Artists United’s Art Fair is at Normandy Park Cove this weekend

Mon, 10/30/2017 - 14:46

Artists United will be presenting its annual Art Fair this coming weekend – Nov. 4-5 (Saturday & Sunday) from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. – at the Normandy Park Cove.

Original fine art, photography, prints, cards, and jewelry from over 20 local artists!

Free admission to their family friendly show at Normandy Park Community Club, located at 1500 SW Shorebrook Drive (map below).

Check out the art raffle for a chance to win an original artwork.

Find the perfect art gift for someone special—or for yourself.

“You won’t want to miss this popular weekend show!”

Sponsored in part by: Normandy Park Community Club and Des Moines Legacy Foundation.

For more information, please visit

The Viand Pundit reviews the Burien Eagles Club

Mon, 10/30/2017 - 07:01

The following is a regular review column by ‘The Viand Pundit,’ our anonymous restaurant critic:

The Viand Pundit Reviews the Burien Eagles Club
By Viand Pundit

The venue and menu here at this quaint members-only club appears to be available right now only during special events.

There is a vending machine. The bar’s decor is a battleship gray/green older building with interesting Eagle heritage and other curious memorabilia near the pull tabs and prizes.

The bar straddles the front while tables high and low dot the floor space. Good selection of hard alcohol, but the beer taps are limited. There is always a good chance you will find your favorite beer in the slide door cooler. The bar opens into a big hall where one notices the two nice pool tables, one with Indian Head Dimes as spots! Because of the Tuesday Night Queen of Hearts the pot was high, and the place was packed, however; I came to try the food having arrived early to avoid a mashup. The menu read Meatloaf, Vegetable, Scalloped potatoes and a roll. I placed my order and found a spot to sit. Service for beverage was wonderful and prompt. I kept looking for my order and after an hour of waiting I had given up on it. A nice patron at my table realized that my order never came while the kitchen started clean up and mentioned it. I was presented with a very cold plate and at any other restaurant I would have left or at least sent it back from whence it came. However; since you choose to present it, I will review it…

The cold meat body met the minimum definition of ground or chopped meat, usually beef, with added seasonings, molded into the shape of a loaf and baked. The seasoning was scant leaving a greasy cold meat to masticate on. There was no thrill or excitement in this loaf slice and I have said life is just to short to eat boring food. Some ketchup or catsup would have helped. (Do you know the difference?)

The Scallop Potato was actually mistaken for a hot German potato salad minus the mustard until I read the poster later. The potato side was not bad, nor was it amazing, just rather Pal Mall and may have been better if it had been warm and not the cool clump on the plate. Canned string beans. A pretty Red Cabbage Slaw was included and seemed to be at the correct temperature but a vinegar based dressing was too thin and not impressive. I wanted to change the dressing and add walnuts and serve on a leaf of kale. I did not investigate the roll. There was no dulce de la dente for a finish.Coffee was available at the bar.

My final synopsis and scope of review boils down to just this: I found the eight dollar price for that dinner to be in a very reasonable range. I feel that the review would not suffer so much had the dinner been sent out on time. The meat should have increased seasoning as it had not reached the threshold of taste in it. Scallop potato needed increase in seasonings as well as some top crisping for color and taste. Wonderful flavinoids occur in the carmelization and crispy edge darkening when cooking them. Canned string beans, no comment because they were just old in the can tasting. I realize a lot of hard work is going into getting the kitchen just right and I am sure you will have a great menu soon. That was a big job that night with an absolute horde of people and that was impressive. First area to improve is Who is running “the Wheel”? What orders are going out timely and hot?

Ultimately, this is a very pleasant and friendly members-only club where Friends Help Friends. Several big screen TVs blare their noise while the high din chatter of people having fun is evident. Would this be my first choice of where to dine? Probably not right now, but I can see like an Eagle that they are headed in the right direction.

The Burien Eagles Club # 3523
920 SW 150th Street
Burien, WA 98166

KUOW on Navos: ‘Foster kids sleep in hotels & offices as 15 more beds disappear’

Fri, 10/27/2017 - 17:20

KUOW Radio did an interesting report on Foster Kids being pushed out of Burien’s Navos that’s worth a listen.

South King County principal Melissa Pointer is worried about her student.

“I tried so many times not to cry,” she said, her voice breaking. “Because when I think about the fact that there’s literally 15 days for him and he doesn’t know where he’s going to go, that just breaks my heart.”

Pointer’s student lives at a group home for foster children, known to many simply as “Ruth Dykeman.”

Mental health care provider, Navos, was providing Behavior Rehabilitation Services (BRS), or round-the-clock care for foster kids with severe behavior problems and emotional needs, at the Ruth Dykeman Children’s Center in Burien.

Listen to Anna Boiko-Weyrauch’s report here:

Read the full story here.

PHOTOS: Windy fall days make for dramatic kiteboarding off Burien’s shores

Fri, 10/27/2017 - 10:52

Windy fall days sure make for some good opportunities for water sports like stand up paddle boarding and the always-dramatic kiteboarding.

Courtesy Elston Hill comes some great photos taken of said sports seen recently off Burien’s shores.

Click images to view larger versions/slideshow:

CLIFF’S EDGE: 7th grade girl’s story about tragic Las Vegas shooting

Fri, 10/27/2017 - 08:30

A couple of weeks ago, following the Las Vegas shootings that resulted in the deaths of 58 people, I wrote in this space of an account of the event by a local 7th-grade girl who had been in Las Vegas with her father at the time.

She is one of three students I meet with an hour each week at Big Picture School in Burien to discuss writing.

I included a part of her account verbatim, and a B-town Blog reader, who goes by the name “Wondering,” inquired if he or she might be able to see the entire piece.

I wanted to comply with that reader’s request for a couple of reasons:

First, this student had not been assigned this article in our writing class. She had taken the initiative to write it, and I believe that initiative should be encouraged.

Second, I find her willingness to continue polishing her writing in an effort to improve it also commendable. I would guess there are few writers at any age who, on returning to their writing after a time away from it don’t see ways they could have done it better.

Again, this should be encouraged, I believe, particularly among younger writers.

We briefly discussed this. She said she would be willing to have the piece published in its entirety with some updating, which I approved. At my suggestion we agreed not to put her name on it.

I wanted to do routine editing of it, which would normally be done prior to publication, but, except for minor corrections and shortening a few paragraphs, I left it in her hands, and here is the result:

On October 1 I was in Las Vegas on vacation with my father. While I was in the city, a huge mass shooting occurred during the annual Harvest Music Festival.

I remember exactly what I was doing when it happened. I was in an Uber only nine minutes away from the event. Thinking back, if that Uber driver had made one wrong turn, or even taken a different route, I’d have been right there in front of it all — but he didn’t so I had no idea; no one did.

According to the news and other papers and blogs, the shooting went on for around 11 minutes. And in just those 11 minutes this one man stopped 58 people’s lives, and sent over 480 more to the hospital. Maybe if they hadn’t gone to that concert, or maybe if he hadn’t checked into that hotel, it wouldn’t have happened. Who knows?

(NOTE: Here I eliminate a few details of the attack that the writer took from news reports with attribution–Cliff)

I remember when I found out what had happened. I woke up to my phone going off like a fire alarm — ding ding ding, ding ding ding. There were a good deal of messages from my family and friends asking if I was okay, and I told them everything was fine. Evidently I was wrong. I turned on the T.V and there I saw it: Las Vegas shooting : At least 59 killed as gunman opens fire at concert!

I remember reading those words, again and again. It were as if I didn’t understand: my mind couldn’t comprehend what had happened. I sat on my bed for like two minutes in silence, alone. I was trying to figure out what it meant. It was in Las Vegas? Where had it happened? Who did it? Why? Questions filled my mind.

The rest of my trip was different. I watched Las Vegas change. From that night on it was like a completely different place. There were fewer people on the street, almost every event and show were shut down, even things that just happened everyday.

Instead of ads on every big bright screen that covered buildings, cars, and billboards, there were quotes and messages to the people of Las Vegas telling them “to stay strong”. It was as if people were trying to make things normal, but were failing. It was so much quieter. It didn’t even seem like Vegas. It was like the whole city went on lockdown. Even parts of the strip shut down, and a lot of businesses weren’t open.

After seeing and watching all these people deal with something this drastic, I began to think. I watched one of the most exuberant places in the world pause. And hold its breath.

I luckily wasn’t involved or at the concert, but I was in that city, and it was different than just reading about it in the news, because I saw things in way where it was real.

I honestly don’t fully understand, no one really does. We don’t know why this man did what he did, but we do know that in just a half an hour our history was changed, horrible things happened, horrible things that 22,000 people witnessed, and that’s damage that’s going to take a long time to repair.

But, people are recovering from injuries, from trauma, just from the news that it happened. Every person who was there is hopefully getting better. But, I don’t know if this will really ever go away, will people ever feel as safe? Everyone’s so worried about Vegas, but I personally believe that this didn’t just change Las Vegas — it changed the world.

Cliff Rowe is a retired journalist and journalism professor. (He practiced both in a time before journalists and what they produced were considered “enemies of the people.”) He and his family have lived in the Shorewood area of White Center (then Burien) since 1969 when they returned to the Northwest after seven years in the Chicago area. There, following graduate school, he wrote and edited with the Chicago Sun-Times and with Paddock Publications in the Chicago suburbs. On moving here, he was with The Seattle Times for 11 years before turning to teaching journalism at Pacific Lutheran University for 35 years, retiring in 2015.

Burien native Robert Pidde will compete in Seattle Comedy Competition

Wed, 10/25/2017 - 14:02

Burien-born and raised Comedian Robert Pidde will be competing in the Seattle International Comedy Competition, with his first appearance set for Nov. 7 at the Comedy Underground.

We caught up with Robert via email for a Q&A, but first, check out this 7-minute video of his act:

Q: You’re from Burien, right? If so, please give details/bio info on your childhood/school days.
A: I am from Burien born and raised, I went to school at Seahurst elementary, Sylvester Middle school and High line high school. I was about 5″0 And 100 lbs until I was 15 and a half or so when I grew up to be 5″9 And 140 over a summer and even though I loved sports while everyone else had gotten used to their bodies it was a lot like being a baby deer that was still new with their limbs. Also it was much easier being short and playing baseball because the strike zone wasn’t that much bigger then the bat so all I had to a gauge was whether it was perfect or not. They said I had a good eye, pretty easy to have a good eye when the ball was at your eyes or ankles and there wasn’t a lot of space in between.

Q: Do you still live in Burien?
A: I don’t. I’m living with my longtime best friend and his wife in Kirkland now

Q: What inspired you to get into comedy?
A: I was never a class clown but I was funny enough to once in a while get a laugh the back of the room that was a smart enough comment that the teacher couldn’t punish me for. Outside that I remember getting my first big laugh in theater at Highline. I loved that time because all of a sudden I wasn’t just some weird kid. I was a weird funny kid and that was a huge difference for me. I even minored in theater in college just to get ready to do stand up. I had been writing since I was 18 but had horrible stage fright (which I wouldn’t say has left but it is very manageable and focused now). I got into it when a guy in one of my philosophy classes needed an opener for a band. I was 21 and had just written a couple things that I really liked (and still like to this day) so I decided to give it a shot. They gave me 10 minutes to start (an eternity) but I had probably 20 written out and memorized. It went good enough. I got laughs in a hard situation to get laughs. While wearing my high school prom tuxedo and Van shoes. I looked my notes just about every other time I did a joke even though it was all I’d thought about that day. The second I got off stage my friends were surprised I was actually pretty funny. I still cringe when I watch the tapes of that time but that feeling of getting good laughs was so great that I knew it was something I was going to want to do forever.

Q: What’s been your career highlight so far?
A: Probably getting into this. It has been getting into this (Seattle Comedy Competition). Otherwise I have won the Comedy on Trial comedy competition 3 times and got to perform in front of a sold out theater last February at Edmonds Center for the arts. Shout out to Kermit Apio who gave me that opportunity and has been nothing but the best since I met him when I first started out.

Q: What’s your career goal?
A: To make stand up comedy a career. I love stand up. I think it’s a challenge that has so many facets that I am capable of doing well and enjoying that I can’t imagine doing much of anything else. I have a long list of back up jobs but even that is a sort of running joke at this point.

Q: In your Youtube video you say you work as a Lyft driver? How is that going?
A: I no longer have to drive for Lyft. I currently the manager at the Comedy Underground but I would expect to be able to be full time as a comedian in the coming year.

Q: Who in the comedy world do you consider an inspiration? (I see some Seinfeld in you)
A: I have been told I remind a lot of people of Seinfeld and what’s funny to me is that I never watched him growing up. I never really saw him until I was playing him in college for a sitcom acting class at Central Washington University. I remember everyone saying I was really really good at it and they thought I was a fanatic of the show but I think we have a similar cadence (in our everyday lives) and facial features. I have actually had to switch up my on stage cadence so people won’t think I’m trying to imitate him (very difficult because of how similar we can be). But I don’t mind, I’ve been playing with my voice and tonality for years. Otherwise Robin Williams live at the met was the first comedy album I ever owned. Patton Oswalt was the first person i ever saw live and to this day probably made me laugh the hardest i ever have at age 12 at bumpershoot. But for the most part I don’t know that there is any one person that’s an inspiration. I think I was always kind of going to end up doing this and I love comedy so much but I listen to it like people listen to different genres of music. There are so many different styles and perspectives that I appreciate that I don’t know that I could point to any one as what started it.

Q: Please tell our Readers where they can see you perform in the competition.
A: Nov 7th at the Comedy Underground, Nov 8th Columbia City Theater, Nov 9th Unexpected Productions, Nov 10th Auburn ave theater, Nov 11th Wica Langley.

Q: Oh, and how old are you and why are you still single? (a 5-year old girl wants to know)
A: I am 28 years old and you can tell that 5 year old girl (that still haunts my dreams) that I haven’t found the right one for me. I sure would like to but dating has been difficult with what I want to accomplish. But I’m sure if the right person came around things would just fall into place. You never know when life will sweep you off your feet. I know I’ve met some amazing girls recently that really give me hope that there is someone out there for me even if they didn’t work out due to poor timing.

Follow Robert here:

Judson Park holding Holiday Bazaars this weekend

Wed, 10/25/2017 - 10:22

Judson Park will be holding Holiday Bazaars this weekend – on Friday, Oct. 27 and Saturday, Oct. 28.

Here are the details:

WHAT: Judson Park Bazaar

WHEN: Friday, October 27, 2017, 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

WHERE: Judson Park Retirement Community
23600 Marine View Drive South
Des Moines, WA 98198


WHAT: Judson Park Bazaar

WHEN: Saturday, October 28, 2017, 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

WHEREJudson Park Retirement Community
23600 Marine View Drive South
Des Moines, WA 98198

All proceeds will benefit the Judson Park Foundation’s Benevolence Fund.

REMINDER: History, Beer, UFOs & ‘Maury Island Incident’ Thursday night!

Tue, 10/24/2017 - 15:01

REMINDER: The Washington State History Museum in Tacoma will be celebrating the 70th Anniversary of two of history’s most notable UFO sightings with a 21+ evening of beer tastings and all things flying saucers this THURSDAY, Oct. 26, from 7 – 10 p.m.

The two cases being celebrated include the Kenneth Arnold UFO sighting and the Maury Island incident, which both took place in Washington in 1947. These two events gave rise to the terms “flying saucer” and “men in black” and kicked off a craze of sightings that year, which included the Roswell incident and many others.

The evening event includes beer tastings with Three Magnets Brewing Co., a presentation on and showing of the film The Maury Island Incident with the filmmakers, UFO-related crafting with the The Museum of Flight, open exhibit galleries, and more.

Here’s a trailer for the local, award-winning film ‘The Maury Island Incident’:

Admission is $15 in advance or $20 at the door, and includes a cool, commemorative pint glass and two drink tickets – buy tickets here:

More info here:

It’ll be a night you won’t soon forget, regardless of what the men in black try to tell you…

The Washington State History Museum is located at 1911 Pacific Ave in Tacoma:

‘Normal is overrated’; Burien’s Cassidy Huff to perform at Benaroya Hall Nov. 10

Tue, 10/24/2017 - 10:40

A great story about inspirational local icon Cassidy Huff – B-Town Blog columnist and Burien ‘Citizen of the Year’ who has gone through 41 surgeries – was posted on the Seattle Children’s blog, and it’s worth a read:

More than a year ago, 15-year-old Cassidy Huff was celebrating her birthday at Seattle Children’s on the eve of her 39th surgery. She was doing what makes her happiest – singing and playing her ukulele. She performed in front of a small crowd made up of her friends, family and medical team. One of the songs she sang was called “Halo,” a parody of Adele’s popular song “Hello,” and an ode to the metal device around her head that would soon be removed.

“When I’m playing I don’t think,” said Cassidy. “Everything around me disappears, and it’s just me. Music has always been my outlet. It tells a story and gives people an inside look into who I am.”

For Cassidy, it’s okay to not be normal. In her words, “Normal is overrated.” To other people facing adversity and obstacles, she wants them to know she understands. Her message is simple: Believe in yourself. It’s a message she takes to heart. One day, she believes she’ll be performing on Broadway. This concert is one step closer to that dream.

Today, Cassidy is preparing for another performance, this time for a much larger crowd. She’s working with Grammy-winning composer Mateo Messina on an original song for Messina’s 20th annual Seattle Children’s benefit concert called Epoch. She’ll be performing the song alongside the Northwest Symphony Orchestra in front of nearly 2,500 people at Benaroya Hall.

(function(d, s, id) { var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0]; if (d.getElementById(id)) return; js = d.createElement(s); = id; js.src = "//"; fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs);}(document, 'script', 'facebook-jssdk'));

Mateo Messina’s 20th annual benefit concert, presented by the LUMA Guild, weaves common themes from our lives, inspired by the unique era we are living in, and written to embrace and celebrate our interconnectedness. To purchase tickets to Epoch on Nov. 10 at 8 p.m. visit LUMA Guild’s event page.

Ticket purchases will directly benefit Seattle Children’s and pediatric cancer research.

Read the full story here.

Boy Scout Troop #360’s ‘Haunted Hike’ will be this Saturday, Oct. 28

Mon, 10/23/2017 - 12:07

Cast in an outdoor Brothers Grimm-like setting, Boy Scout Troop #360’s annual ‘Haunted Hike’ will be this Saturday, Oct. 28, from 5:30–8 p.m. at Camp Schoenwald, which is located behind Sylvester Middle School.

This is a community event geared toward youth aged 7-12, and the cost is $2 per person.

“As you walk through the scary, dark forest, you will come across a variety of haunted scenes. Some may make you laugh, others will drain you of your courage! Either way, this mysterious trek is sure to get you in the mood for Halloween.”

Everyone is welcome, so bring your whole family, but please be aware that is can be too scary for some younger hikers.

If you’re up for a hike through the woods and a good old-fashioned scaring, put on your hiking boots and join us for an evening of classics like: grave scenes, monsters jumping out at you from the bushes, creatures ambling through the fog, rabid animals howling in the distance, and yes, perhaps even… zombies!!

WHEN: Saturday, October 28, 2017, 5:30pm – 8pm

WHERE: Schoenwald Park (directions)
16030 Sylvester Road SW
Burien, WA 98166

COST: $2.00 per person

What to bring:

  • Appropriate clothing for an outdoor event
  • Scout parents (welcome and encouraged to attend)
  • Headlamp or flashlight
  • Appetite for fun

INFO: More info here:

PHOTO: Blue Heron waits for fly fisherman at Seahurst Park Beach

Mon, 10/23/2017 - 07:13

Courtesy Photographer Aaron Wells comes this great photo, captured Sunday evening at Seahurst Park.

“The Blue Heron spent a good fifteen minutes waiting for the fly fisherman, a local man named David, to reel in his catch,” Aaron said.

Click image to view larger version:

CLIFF’S EDGE: My brief, heavy handed reminder: Get a flu shot

Fri, 10/20/2017 - 11:41

It’s that time of year again when I either take on a formidable head cold—or I don’t.

Last weekend I did, and it was a memorable one, short in duration, but long in symptoms. It served as an exhausting reminder that I have yet to get my annual flu shot. I’ll take care of that soon, of course.

Disease has always been a somewhat hit-or-miss affair with me.

For example, I missed whooping cough through my entire childhood, then got it the night of my junior prom in high school. My popularity among all classmates took a hit that night and a budding relationship with my date for the evening ended abruptly.

Then there was my relationship with measles. I can remember being told somewhere along the line that you only get measles once. I got them three times between the ages of 4 and 8, approximately.

As the family told it, I came down with them each time during our annual Christmas-holiday train trip between Klamath Falls, Ore., where my dad was a high-school teacher, and my grandparents’ fruit and vegetable farm near Eugene.

My mother often made note of that on Christmases since then, usually prompting my dad to note that we’d received no threats of lawsuits either from the railroad or any of our fellow passengers, which was surprising since each such incident created a certain amount of stir through the train.

Then with great foreboding came the mumps in my 30th year. The three children who had come into our family by that time – at least the two who were old enough to understand that late late affliction – were astonished.

Another significant factor contributing to this disjointed medical history, I believe, was my mother’s being a career-long registered nurse diligently treating the ills of others, whether in a doctor’s office or community hospital. I suspect her constantly being alert to the symptoms of others conditioned me to willingly accept them whenever they came around.

Through grade school, so far as I know, I was the only kid in town whose mother kept penicillin in the refrigerator at home right next to the orange juice. In those years at the first sound of a cough out would come the needle and down would go my pants for a well-administered shot.

As penicillin went out of vogue, I envisioned myself as a proving ground for its successors in the treating of colds and related maladies.

For certain, when I coughed in our house, it was an honest cough. Honest, though perhaps out of synch with prescribed medical timetables.

Flu shot, right. I’ll get one.

Burien’s annual Día De Los Muertos / Day of the Dead Celebration is Fri., Nov. 3

Fri, 10/20/2017 - 11:24

Burien’s annual Día De Los Muertos / Day of the Dead Celebration will be held at the Community Center from 6 – 9 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 3.

Don’t miss this fun-filled evening to learn about the rich tradition of DAY of the DEAD.

Play Loteria (Mexican bingo), get your face painted and create crafts.

Enjoy music, bilingual storytelling around the campfire, and Mexican hot chocolate, and pan de muerto.

Beautiful altars will be on display created by Burien community groups.

This is a FREE, family-friendly event put on by Burien Parks.

NEW this year is an art installation called “Dos Fridas: a live art installation” by Amaranta Sandys, sponsored by 4 Culture. Learn more about Amaranta here:


WHEN: Friday, Nov. 3, from 6 – 9 p.m.

WHERE: Burien Community Center, 14700 6th Ave SW (map below)



  • Face Painting hosted by Burien Arts
  • Loteria (bingo) Room

Arts & Crafts — mask making and more:

  • Come dressed at a Catrina or Frida

Traditional Music and Dance:  

  • 6:15-7:15pm Seattle Danza Azteca
  • 7:30-8:45pm Grupo Folklorico Guadalajara
  • 7:30-8:45pm Grupo Folklorico Citlali

Food for purchase from Maria’s Tamales.


And much more!

More info here: and here

The Burien Community Center is located at 14700 6th Ave SW:

REMINDER: Burien Actors Theatre’s excellent ‘Ben Butler’ ends this weekend!

Fri, 10/20/2017 - 07:23

From left to right, the slave Shepard Mallory (Sharif Ali) shows the results of being punished to Major Benjamin Butler (Michael Mendonsa) in Burien Actors Theatre’s comedy-historical drama Ben Butler about slavery, politics and the Civil War. Photo by Michael Brunk /

REMINDER: Burien Actors Theatre’s excellent production of ‘Ben Butler’ ends this Sunday, Oct. 23!

Don’t miss your last chance to see this great production – there will be performances Friday and Saturday night at 8 p.m., with the finale on Sunday at 2 p.m.

Below is our review, as well as a $5 off Coupon:

Review by Shelli Park

Entering the theater, the experience begins. Early black spirituals take the mind back in time. They play to a dimly lit stage: a pre-Civil War office, simply appointed, and oriented at a refreshing angle. A few trunks are stacked in the room with nameplates denoting that we are in the office of the title character: Maj. Gen. Benjamin Franklin Butler.

As the lights come up, a well-seasoned man in high-ranking Union colors sits at his desk, letter in hand. He is processing the contents of the letter as a subordinate officer enters with pressing information. This initial exchange opens the window into the thought processes of a man, Maj. Gen. Butler, who would profoundly influence the direction of the Civil War.

Burien Actors Theatre’s season opener is a Northwest Premiere. ‘Ben Butler’, a witty and eye-opening historical comedy, is written by Richard Strand, an award-winning playwright, and is directed by Rachel Rene.

‘Ben Butler’ takes a poignant look at a tumultuous and uncertain time period in U.S. history. This moment is distilled by Strand into a series of conversations which take place over the course of a few days. Rene guides the action in skilled way, directing the actors so that their placement on stage underscores the nuances of the character relationships.

The two main characters, Maj. Gen. Butler, played by Michael Mendonsa and Shepherd Mallory, and an escaped slave, played by Sharif Ali, engage in tentative exploration of the other. The two are a mixture of intellectually curious, stubborn, and insecure. Strand uses the dialogue to construct a very satisfying experience using wit, psychology, and humor to bring about a difficult but ethical conclusion. Human weakness is on display, but is accepted as a part of the human condition. The play is generous in its ability to navigate what we think we know until we find that we don’t know what we don’t know. In the end, knowledge and open curiosity about ‘other’ is the key to opening the closed doors of the heart and mind. What we may think of as ‘other’ and entirely alien to ourselves, often is more similar than that we want to admit.

Mendonsa and Ali are wonderful counterpoints. They play off of each other as in a dynamic musical score, complete with poignant pauses,, pizzicato, allegro, forte, and an appropriate amount of dissonance which, finally, resolves.

Lieutenant Kelly (Mark Fox) is the comedic foil in the equation, and his evolution of thought gives hope that humans can indeed learn and grow, all the while making us laugh. Fox does a wonderful job in this role. His manner alternates between appropriately irritating and quite endearing.

Major Cary (Dave Tucker) is the villain. Tucker’s slow, vexed manner is successful in creating the necessary unsympathetic character.

Ben Butler is a timely play as we navigate, on a local and national level, the idea of us vs. them. We are, as it turns out, all part of the human race. We are all a part of the same community, on both a local and national level.

The BAT production of Ben Butler is wonderfully done. It both provokes thought and thoroughly entertains. The talent is top notch and is well worth taking the time to enjoy!

The Burien Actors Theatre production also features specialty drinks themed to the show, as well as plenty of free on-site parking.

Performances are Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m., with Sunday matinees at 2 p.m. at Burien Actors Theatre, 14501 4th Ave SW in Burien (map below).

Click on the coupon below, then print from your home computer and save $5 bucks:

Ticket prices range from $7 to $20. Student tickets are just $10. Enjoy an opening weekend deals: Tickets on opening night, Sept. 29, include free admission to the opening night party. On Saturday, Sept. 30 all tickets are half price. On Sunday, Oct. 1, known as Seven Buck Sunday, admission is just $7.

For tickets, special deals or other information, go to or call 206-242-5180.

BAT is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) entity and operates on revenue from ticket sales, donations, grants, sponsorships and volunteers.

CALL TO ARTISTS: Apply for 2018 Community Center Gallery Program

Thu, 10/19/2017 - 10:43

Artists working in 2 dimensional media are invited to apply for the 2018 schedule of gallery exhibitions at the Burien Community Center, the City announced.

The application deadline is Nov. 17, 2017.

The exhibit space wall is in the Community Center lobby, and measures 14’6” x 8’8”. Artists are encouraged to view the space before applying to see if suitable. The lobby is monitored by staff.

The Community Center (located at 14700 6th Ave SW) is open Monday-Thursday, 8:30 a.m. – 8 p.m., and Friday 8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.

There is no insurance for objects installed for exhibition, however, every precaution is taken to ensure the safety of the artwork.

This is not a sales space, but artists are able to have contact information with their artwork.

Please e-mail the following application materials to

  • 5 digital images (work completed within the last two years) representing the type of work proposed for the exhibition. Please do not send photographs, original artwork, or slides.
  • A list of the images submitted with medium and sizes.
  • Resume detailing exhibition history and/or personal statement. (Please include name, address, phone number, and e-mail address.)

Questions? Please contact Gina Kallman at

KNKX Radio: ‘Something’s Different About This Year’s Election In Burien’

Wed, 10/18/2017 - 11:36

KNKX Radio (88.5 FM, formerly KPLU) did a good radio report they call ‘Something’s Different About This Year’s Election In Burien’ that’s definitely worth a listen.

Here’s how they introduce it:

This year’s election in Burien is about more than local issues like potholes and streetlights.

Residents of the city, located 10 miles south of downtown Seattle, are fresh off a fierce debate about whether or not Burien should be a so-called “sanctuary city” with policies protecting undocumented immigrants.

As the Nov. 7 election approaches, neighbors and candidates in the city of 50,000 people are debating issues like how to treat undocumented immigrants and the definition of racism.

To some, Burien’s election is an example of how Donald Trump’s presidency has changed politics in cities across the region, dividing neighbors and imbuing local races with echoes of the national 2016 contest.

The story features interviews with Joseph Saia, Lisa Parks, candidate Jimmy Matta, along with his opponent for Position No. 3, incumbent Councilmember Debi Wagner.

Press the ‘Play’ button to hear Will James’ story:

‘Vision 20/20’ Art Party Fundraiser will be at Burien Community Center Nov. 18

Wed, 10/18/2017 - 10:35

Burien’s biggest Art Party – Vision 20/20 – is coming to the Burien Community Center on Saturday, Nov. 18, from 6:30 – 10:30 p.m.!

Over 400 pieces of original art by 40+ regional artists will be on sale.

This art auction is THE art event of the fall for Burien.

Unique 8″ x 8″ pieces of art are all $40 each, together with a silent auction for larger pieces.

Good food, wine, and exuberant company as well as music and prizes complete the evening.

This is a critical fundraiser for Burien Arts’ programs.

For more information or to exhibit at Vision 20/20, email

“See you there!”

More info at

The Burien Community Center is located at 14700 6th Ave SW:

Creepy Crawlers Pub Crawl & Costume Contest will be Sat. night, Oct. 28

Tue, 10/17/2017 - 18:30

After enjoying the Boo In Burien, Discover Burien invites everyone (21 and over) to the inaugural Creepy Crawlers Pub Crawl and Costume Contest on Saturday, Oct. 28, from 6 p.m. – Midnight.

Nine Burien bars are coming together to host this fun event in Downtown Burien.

Passports will be sold starting Monday, Oct. 23 in the Discover Burien office (427 SW 152nd Street) and will be $10. You can also purchase passports at the Boo In Burien event. Each passport will be good for food and drink specials at participating bars.

Creepy Crawlers can vote on their favorite decorated bar as they enjoy a fun night out on the town. And don’t forget your own costume! There is a MEGA first place prize of $1,000 for the best costume of the night. Prizes also for second and third place.

After Creepy Crawlers get 6 or more stamps in their passport, they should come to the Discover Burien office to have their picture taken as the official entry to the contest. Pictures will be uploaded to the Discover Burien Facebook page, at the stroke of Midnight, for all to view and enjoy! Voting will be a combination of “likes” on their picture on Discover Burien’s Facebook page, plus votes from each participating bars employees and votes of the Discover Burien Staff.

Be sure to attend this new event with your family and friends for a scary good time! See you there!

Thank you to the following bars for sponsoring this event: 909 Coffee and Wine, Bison Creek Pizza, Classic Eats, Elliot Bay, Frankies B-Town Bistro, Pit Stop Taproom and Pub, SmartyPants Garage, The Point Liquor and Eats, and Tin Room Bar.


Discover Burien is a non-profit focused on local community and business development, education, and promotion. Membership and contributions are tax deductible.

More info at

October Tasting will feature Washington Wines at Tin Theater Thursday night

Tue, 10/17/2017 - 15:11

Thursday, Oct. 19 / 5 – 7 p.m. in the Tin Theater

Featuring wines from Northwest Cellars of Washington:

  • Snipes Mountain Viognier 2015
  • Verhey Vineyard Malbec 2013
  • Columbia Valley “R” Red Blend
  • Columbia Valley “Madrigal” “Rhone” Red Blend 2013
  • Columbia Valley Carmenere 2013

“Come join us!”

More info at

The Tin Room is located at 923 SW 152nd Street in Olde Burien:

October is ‘Paint your Fire Hydrant Pink’ Month (aka Cancer Awareness Month)

Tue, 10/17/2017 - 11:45

By Mark Ufkes

October is Breast and All Cancer Awareness Month. To do our part to promote cancer health awareness, my remarkable wife Lois Schipper and I spent an hour painting our White Center fire hydrant a wonderful pink hue. Here is how we did it. First, we cleared off the concrete pad it was sitting on with a hard brush. We then swept the actual hydrant with a clean patio broom and put newspaper down around the base to catch the paint drops. We used two 3-inch cheap brushes. The gallon of pink paint was a Home Depot Opps find. It cost $9, and one gallon can give two coats of paint for 5 or 6 fire hydrants.

And yes, it is legal … if your water is provided by Seattle Public Utilities. Seattle allows you to paint your fire hydrants! About a third of our neighborhoods in the unincorporated areas of White Center, those that border Arbor Heights and Southwest Seattle, already have Seattle utility services.

As a Scoutmaster, several years ago, I approached Seattle Public Utilities and asked permission to re-paint all the hydrants in the White Center area as a possible Eagle Scout project. They gave me approval and encouraged us to “Make it look nice, be careful with traffic, and clean up afterwards.” The scout took a different project, so many of the fire hydrants remain in desperate need of new paint. Our freshly painted pink fire hydrant is located on SW 107th Way, between 22nd Ave. SW and 26th Ave. SW.

Everyone has lost someone to cancer. Everyone. So, get your wife, husband, kids, partners, neighbors, church group, any and all of your friends, and go paint your fire hydrant. Be careful with the traffic, wear orange vests if possible so the drivers can see you working, and take lots of pictures (to send to your friends). For October, any color of pink will do. And it will remind us that those who have died of cancer are still with us every day. We painted ours pink for my mom, Iris Adkins, who died of colon cancer in 1972, when she was 43 years old.


User login

Twitter Updates