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By Community, for Community February 2018

W H AT ’ S I N S I D E ? 5 Feature: Annual Development Issue 8 Traffic Corner 9 20 Years of Issaquah Highlands 10 Highlands Council 11 IHCA News, Homeowner Tips, Etc. 14 What’s Happening 16 Living Green

16 17 18 19 19 20 21 21 22 25

Ask Kari Fitness & Health City News Photo Treasure Hunt Highlands Fiber Network Giving in the Highlands Blakely Hall Art Gallery Arts and Entertainment School Spotlight Volunteer of the Month

26 Emergency Preparedness 27 Directory

ECRWSS POSTAL PATRON 2550 NE Park Drive Issaquah, WA 98029



• February 2018

Issaquah Highlands Connections

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Issaquah Highlands Connections


Issaquah Highlands welcomed its first residents in 1998 and has been growing ever since. With almost constant development (except during those few recession years), Issaquah Highlands has experienced constant change.

At the time each of us moved into our homes here, we bought into a snapshot of the Highlands. However, we have all jumped into a moving picture, not a snapshot. My family’s house wasn’t even built when we chose it, the road was not complete when we moved in. Over time, our view changed from a construction site to young plantings now to mature trees and landscape.

New proposal for pedestrian-bike trail delights this avid walker!

But our view of what Issaquah Highlands could be hasn’t changed. We always hoped for a fullyrealized urban village, a self-sustaining community providing “live, work and play” opportunities. How will the final properties be developed? Will they fulfill this vision? We get closer to answering those questions in this issue of Connections, the Development Update. Almost all the development in Issaquah Highlands is now planned. We report on the details here. Many are under construction or at least, permitted. Some plans are longer term, so I would say, subject to change. As is often the case with change, there is something for everyone. With new homes come more parks and trails. I am very much looking forward to the new trails, passageways and new views from Westridge. Much of the imagery in Connections is best viewed online, with convenience and digital clarity. You may view Connections on your tablet or computer, using this URL: connect/connections-news/ And you can see more development details on our Development in the Highlands page here: Enjoy! Nina Milligan Editor of Connections - Highlands Council Communications Manager Highlands Council is the publisher of Connections, producer of community-wide events such as Highlands Day, owner and manager of Blakely Hall, liaison with the greater community. The mission of Highlands Council, and therefore, Connections News, is “to foster the development of a vibrant and caring community committed to service, diversity, and well-being.” The 2018 aerial cover shot of the Highlands was taken by volunteer photographer, Manchester Court resident, Scott Moffat. Thank you, Scott!

February 2018 •



• February 2018

Issaquah Highlands Connections

Issaquah Highlands Connections

February 2018 •

by Nina Milligan, Highlands Council Communications Manager

Over time our views naturally change: how we look at things and how things look to us. This couldn’t be truer than it is in Issaquah Highlands.

Before this community was built, Grand Ridge was part forest, part gravel pit. The founders of Issaquah Highlands, and its first residents, couldn’t actually see what this community would become; they had only a mental view. Port Blakely CEO Judd Kirk saw, “density, walkability, diversity and amenities” in a vibrant urban area with an “emphasis on community and sustainability.” Today, Issaquah Highlands has become a vibrant urban village, home to over 10,000 people and dozens of businesses. Many who came to the Highlands in the early days have remained, some changing homes as their family needs changed.

Polygon Westridge WESTRIDGE AT A GLANCE:

• Sustainable “green” construction • Designs reviewed by IHCA Builder Architecture Review Committee (ARC) • 220 townhomes (see illustration above), ten of them “affordable”* • 155 single family homes, pricing starts at $990K • 38 stacked flats, all “affordable”* • One Life Enrichment Options (LEO) group home *Affordable Housing is managed by ARCH, through the City of Issaquah. All units will be for sale with a perpetual covenant to keep them “affordable.” Levels of affordability are based on area median income. The stacked flats will be eligible to those earning 80/100/120% area median income ($94K for a family of four). The townhomes will have ten units available to those earning 60% of area median income.

But there is a wrinkle. As our view west of Highlands Drive fills with homes, some say there are too many homes, too much traffic, and too many children in our overcrowded schools. However, growth can also bring opportunities. Consider the new neighborhood being built by Polygon Northwest Homes, west of Highlands Drive. It will be among our most walkable neighborhoods, close to Swedish, Grand Ridge Plaza and the Park & Ride. A proposed replacement of High Street intends to create a new paved, shared walking path, where everyone can enjoy the mountain and skyline views. While our views change, those that we see and those that we hold, consider the benefits that come with new development in our community. As our urban village community approaches full build-out, growing pains are expected. New development might change the view out your window, but it might also bring new viewpoints on how we can live, work and play together in this place we call home.

POLYGON-PROPOSED NEW ROADWAY CONFIGURATIONS: • High Street continues west and south to a new 6th Place NE • West of 6th, High Street becomes non-motorized bike and pedestrian promenade • Park Drive extends into the retail area (see Shelter Holdings, page 6) • Federal Avenue continues west to 6th Place NE • Ellis Drive continues west to West Highlands Park • 7th Ave NE will be a new road north from Discovery Drive into the townhomes neighborhood (not direct through street)

Polygon’s single family proposal includes replacing a portion of High Street and converting it to a roadway promenade for walkers and bicyclists. Image Source: Polygon Northwest Homes.



• February 2018

Shelter Holdings’ Proposal Status

Shelter Holdings (through their affiliate IHIF Commercial, LLC) continues to advance their plans to develop the 21.5 acre, undeveloped L-shaped property (formerly owned by Microsoft) located west of 9th Ave. NE. The development, referred to as “The High Street Collection,” is slated for commercial and retail use. While the City of Issaquah processes a preliminary plat application to divide the property into ten lots, Shelter Holdings has also submitted applications for four site development permits for retail, office, medical office and storage facility uses.

Issaquah Highlands Connections

SHELTER HOLDINGS’ PLANS AT A GLANCE: • New retail/services and restaurants (Lots 1-5 -- see above image in blue) • Approximately 120,000 square foot office building with ground floor fitness use and retail (Lot 6) • Approximately 92,000 square foot medical office building, with ground floor retail or commercial uses (Lots 7 and 8) • Self-storage facility (Lot 9)

When Shelter Holdings originally proposed “The High Street Collection” in July 2016, they conducted a community meeting at Blakely Hall to share ideas for a large-scale, mixed-use residential development. However, those plans did not comply with the 1.86 M SF commercial and retail land uses entitled to the property (only 3 residential units allowed). According to documents on the City website, current plans do not include residential development and are comprised of retail/services, restaurants, an office building, a medical office building, and a self-storage facility. “We’re proud to be a local developer with a long history in this community and are excited to move forward with these projects, which will bring new jobs, retail and services to Issaquah Highlands’ residents,” Shelter Holdings co-founder Gary Young said. “We received lots of great input from the community over the past couple of years and made efforts to incorporate as much of residents’ great input into our plans.” You will find updates at Contact Shelter Holdings directly at

For over 20 years, development in Issaquah Highlands has been regulated by a Development Agreement (a contract) between the master developer, Port Blakely, and the City of Issaquah. All the Highlands were zoned Urban Village and development was determined by allowed uses counted in units or square footage. The Development Agreement (DA) will be replaced early in 2018 with city zoning, overlays and code to govern future development and redevelopment. Beginning in Spring 2017, city representatives reviewed and revised the replacement regulations to best reflect policies that perpetuate the original vision of Issaquah Highlands, a dense, pedestrian-friendly urban village. Many of Issaquah Highlands development regulations will remain unchanged. The process is almost complete. In December, the City Council decided to hold an additional community outreach meeting (February 7th) and to send the proposed Replacement Regulations back to the Land and Shore Committee on February 8th for further discussion and recommendation. Most topics have been worked out except for a recommendation to establish a minimum floor area ratio (FAR) and vesting provisions.

In Shelter Holdings’ site development permit application, this sketch illustrates an office building planned for Lot 6 (the corner of Discovery and Highlands Drives) and a medical office building proposed for Lots 7-8 further west on Discovery Drive. Image Source: Shelter Holdings.

For more information, please see:


End of Development Agreement Highlands Replacement Regulations Wednesday, February 7th at 7pm Blakely Hall Details about residential property regulations, new commercial and retail development will be discussed.

Issaquah Highlands Connections

February 2018 •

Central Park Pad #1 Nears Completion Central Park Pad #1 is in its final stages of construction and is on schedule and on budget for a Q1 2018 completion, according to City of Issaquah. Highlights include updated sports fields with synthetic turf, drainage, fencing and LED field lights, path lights and scoreboard. New roofs will be installed over the dugouts. Added parking lot lights and walkways will help parking lot users. Central Park updates appeal to spectators as well as athletes. A new picnic shelter is coming soon, and a new mound area with seat walls provides a community viewing space. Other amenities, including new benches, picnic tables and bike racks, will be added by project’s end. The park will also feature unique public art by artist, Lydia Aldredge, commissioned by the City of Issaquah’s Arts Commission. A new viewing mound with seat walls (pictured here under construction) will provide a new community gathering area at Central Park Pad #1, opening Q1 2018.

To mitigate increased traffic, Central Park fields will run at 75% capacity until a new traffic light is installed in future at the intersection of Park Drive and Central Park Lane. City of Issaquah will announce a ribbon-cutting date as the project completion draws near.

Possible New Elementary School Update We continue to follow the Issaquah School District’s progress to site a new elementary school in Issaquah Highlands on land west of Swedish Hospital. In 2017, ISD began due diligence work to consider purchasing a portion of land called King County Island, now owned by the City of Issaquah. From L. Michelle, ISD Executive Director of Communication: “As our enrollment continues to grow, the Issaquah School District is hard at work planning, constructing, and purchasing property to build, remodel, and expand schools.” Rendering of proposed new ISD elementary school sited on hillside land west of Swedish Hospital. Image source: Issaquah School District website.

Prior to starting the permitting process, the District will complete geotechnical soil testing, an inventory and assessment of the site’s trees, and topographic survey work to assess the viability of the property. They will also work

Grand Ridge Plaza, Block 5, Building 2

with the City of Issaquah on storm water and adjacent developer construction requirements along Discovery Drive. The City of Issaquah City Council will need to approve ISD’s plans and sell the property to ISD before design work can begin. If approved, the new school will be designed as a “compact school,” a multi-story school that requires less land and has a smaller footprint, similar to Clark Elementary School and Issaquah Middle School. ISD says they will have more information to share this spring. You can learn more about their progress on the Issaquah Highlands school siting and ISD’s other construction projects on their website, https://www.issaquah.

Block 19 Apartments

• New building at High Street and 9th Ave NE (Grand Ridge Plaza’s final entitlement)

• Received land use permit; building permit expected by February

• Tenants: Orangetheory Fitness (to open Summer 2017) and Habit Burger (more details to be announced)

• 5 stories on the east side

• Vested with IHDA, IHCA Builder ARC • Two additional lower floors for townhomes, parking on west side

• 5,325 square feet of retail space

• East facing includes a courtyard

• Multiple building entrances

• Outdoor pool located on the 3rd floor

• Small, landscaped patio includes seating and bicycle parking

• New community trail will connect WSDOT Pond trail to 10th Ave. NE

• New “Grand Ridge Plaza” sign constructed at NW corner of building

Tract D

• Roof top deck for residents

CitySurf • Vested in a “mini development agreement” to manage 100 Transfer Development Rights (TDRs) and Affordable housing in Westridge Block 4 (Polygon)

• Has a land use permit • Plans to submit a building permit application soon • Vested with IHDA, IHCA Builder ARC

• 10 single family homes

Want more development updates? Go to Get more info on the developments in this issue, as well as future updates on the Bellevue College site and Swedish Hospital.



• February 2018

Issaquah Highlands Connections


CITY UPDATES COMMUNITY ON TRAFFIC SAFETY CONCERNS by Nina Milligan, Highlands Council, Communication Manager

The City of Issaquah returned to Blakley Hall on Wednesday, January 17, 2018 to follow up on traffic safety concerns and report early progress addressing those concerns. For this meeting, the City brought all the leaders and decision makers involved in these matters. Traffic concerns first came to a head last summer when residents on 24th and 25th Avenues NE reached out to the City of Issaquah and the Issaquah-Sammamish Reporter to voice their fears that speeding drivers would eventually cause a devastating accident. The City responded initially by gathering data on driving patterns on the two streets, south of Park Drive NE. The City hosted a community meeting in July 2017 at Blakely Hall to discuss the findings. Since then, the City, Highlands Council and the Issaquah Highlands Community Association (IHCA) continued the conversation and began drafting solutions to stated concerns. Highlands Council and the IHCA took on the first steps, an education and influence campaign called, “Drive With Care, Walk Aware,” which was rolled out early January. Community members are asked to slow down, “drive like you live here,” and for pedestrians to “walk aware” and for all to pledge their commitment. We have 110+ signatures. The City opened the January 17 meeting with background information about what has transpired since last summer. Forging a unique collaboration between our community and the City, identifying priorities, and embarking on the education and influence campaign were the agreed first steps. The City also began emphasizing the importance of the campaign, with Sheldon Lynne, Director of Public Works Engineering declaring, “That’s what it’s about, changing social behaviors.”

More to the engineering side of traffic safety, John Mortenson, Senior Engineer explained, “As part of the partnership, one of the things we wanted to find was some easy and fairly economical things we could do to improve traffic [safety].” Mortenson described the pavement markings the City put down in December. These included speed limit markings on 24th and 25th Avenues NE and directional arrows in Grand Ridge Plaza where one-way streets cause driver confusion. These will be repainted in the Spring with a more durable material. Kurt Seemann, City of Issaquah Transportation Manager, followed up with the City’s intended next steps. He anticipated complaints from the audience by prefacing, “We are engineers. We are very intentional, deliberate and careful about what we do. We don’t take this lightly. We might be slower than what some people would like, but at the end of the day we are focused on doing the right thing, doing the safe thing.” The City proposed the following “Next Steps” • Continue working together • Update speed data (on 24th and 25th to measure efficacy of campaign) • Improve pedestrian visibility at crosswalks • Consider radar speed signs as appropriate • Use “Peak Democracy” (an online tool) to continue the conversation (coming soon) • Develop recommendations to share at April or May community meeting at Blakely Hall An expanded version of this story can be found here: .You may watch the entire meeting at issaquahhighlands Please plan to attend the next meeting in the Spring. To make sure you receive meeting notifications, like us on Facebook, read Connections news, or read our weekly e-letter. When you have safety concerns, contact the City directly. They are setting up a new input tool for online messaging called Peak Democracy. We will let you know how to get there when that becomes available. You may also use Report a Concern on the City website. In addition, Mayor Pauly and Director Lynne also welcome your concerns via email.

Issaquah Highlands Connections

February 2018 •


Settlers: The Highlands Early Residents by Kathryn Dean, Kirk Park Neighborhood

Grand Ridge is the oldest of the Issaquah Alps, overlooking the valley and Lake Sammamish from its location north of the highway. It was mostly forested trails, very popular with mountain bikers, but also partly gravel mine. Most of it, 2,200 acres, was owned by Port Blakely, a timber company. In 1996, Port Blakely entered an agreement with the city of Issaquah to preserve three quarters of it as open space or park and to create from the remainder an urban village community using sustainable building methods. The first homes were completed in Ashland Park in 1998 and Issaquah Highlands was born. The thriving community we now enjoy began as a few houses around a park called Ashland circle. Forward-thinking men and women believing in the vision of Port Blakely moved to the desolate hillside to become the first neighbors. Geoffrey Walker and his family were one of these first families who became immediately involved in shaping the direction of our community. Geoff has been a member and chairman of the Urban Village Development Commission since 2000. He, his wife Ursula and their children, Amira, Samia, and Theo, also drew other family members to the community. Ursula’s sister Ingrid and husband Dan Adams moved to the community in 2000, followed by her other sister Theora and Joey Delupan, and their parents Theo and Ada Leenstra soon after. The family now owns five homes in the Highlands. The variety of housing and neighborhoods appealed to many different sized families. Geoff remembers the strong sense of community that existed from the very beginning, “Everyone knew all their neighbors. We had parties, 4th of July picnics and parades, community meetings, work parties (trails, parks, etc.), and everyone worked together to help achieve the vision.”

Another early resident, Kelly Bilco, moved here with her family in 1999. Kelly was employed by Port Blakely to promote the builders and the community. She had this to say about those early years, “People at the beginning were all excited about the plans for growth. I took on the role of doing community events and bringing moms and families together for story time, parades, egg hunts, Santa Claus visits, wine tastings and cooking classes. It’s exciting that this has carried on and so many are involved in the community events. Port Blakely did such an amazing job. Judd Kirk and Joe Coakley and Ruth Winbauer were pivotal in bringing this vision to fruition.” Patrick, who currently serves as Vice President of Highlands Council, and Arden Byers moved to Ashland Park from north Seattle in early 2001. The builders and home styles appealed to them, as well as the school district and shorter commute for work. But Patrick says the neighborhood vision was most important. “The urban village concept was one of the biggest selling points for us. We wanted to live in a neighborhood built to encourage interaction and community, and we also liked that the homes were all Built-Green.” Patrick also had fond memories of the urban area of his childhood, “I grew up in a neighborhood next to a small commercial district, so we were able to walk to the store, the barber and a local restaurant. When we moved here we loved the promise of a community where you could do that. Ultimately, we moved here for the urban village concept and the amenities it promised. 17 years, two homes and two kids later, our favorite things are really the friendships, community and connections we’ve built in a neighborhood built to encourage just that.” These first residents came for many different reasons, but all believed in the vision of the community and became key players in bringing that vision to fruition in our thriving, growing, urban village.

Pioneer Views

Resident since 1998 Chairman, City of Issaquah Urban Village Development Commission

G eo ff Wa lker


When we first moved here we expected: To be here a while. And sure enough, after nearly 20 years and five family homes, we are still around and loving it.


The Walker family at the Issaquah Highlands Easter festivities at Ashland Park in 2002. Parents Ursula and Geoff with Amira, Samia and Theo.

The Walker Family at the family home still in the Highlands with Geoff, Ursula, Theo (21), Samia (24) and Amira (26).

20 years later, I think Issaquah Highlands is/has: Become a wonderful place to make a home, raise a family, and create lasting friendships. A neighborhood of neighborhoods celebrating diversity, recreation, and the love of the nature and beauty around us.


I think Issaquah Highlands still could use: An even broader representation and balance of non-residential buildings, including interesting retail, education, office, and entertainment, as well as more community events and gatherings.



• February 2018

Issaquah Highlands Connections


For the Love of Art

by Christy Garrard, Executive Director of Highlands Council and Dahlia Park resident Highlands Council was fortunate to qualify again this year for the City of Issaquah Community Fund Grant and have applied this funding to a renovation of the conference room space inside Blakely Hall. Called the conference room, the space is rarely used for business meetings. The room is popular for childrens programming, including the before and aftercare program for Grand Ridge Elementary students and weekly playgroups. The formality of the space prohibited the use of playdough, finger paint or glitter. In 2016 I was part of a Leadership in the Arts committee for the City of Issaquah where we identified the need for more art-making spaces

in the city. Our community partner, artEAST, planted the idea that a variety of art classes could be offered at Blakely Hall if there were only a large enough space to get messy. We hired a professional contractor and in January, removed the carpet, refinished the floors, added a deeper sink, a new countertop and a fresh coat of paint – all in one week! Now the playgroups can finger paint, art classes and camps have a creative space, and our fitness classes have a smooth surface floor to glide to the Zumba beat! Want to start a craft club? Host a pottery class? Teach tap dancing? We have a space for that! Contact us at 425-507-1107.

THANK YOU City of Issaquah Meeta Mehta

Interior Designer and Magnolia Park Resident

Andrew Morse

General Contractor, AB Morse General Contractors

Blakely Hall “Conference Room” was intended for business meetings, but the community uses it more for family-friendly events. January’s remodel converts the room more into a “Studio” suitable for art projects and parties.

For the Love of Culture

by Christy Garrard, Executive Director of Highlands Council and Dahlia Park resident We celebrate the diversity of our community this month with a variety of events at Blakely Hall that are open to everyone to enjoy. Highlands Council wishes to thank the resident volunteer leaders who bring this enriching programming to Issaquah Highlands. For dates and details on the events below, plus artist talks, gardening seminars, fitness classes and more – flip to the What’s Happening centerfold section of this issue. When Jews Were Funny is a documentary about the history of Jewish culture and how the humor of the Hebrew people has evolved and remained the same. Hosted by the Jewish Club of Issaquah Highlands. The first-ever Daddy-Daughter Dance at Blakely Hall, hosted by Summit Life Church is FREE and features corsages, refreshments and a photo booth in addition to plenty of dancing! Plan to attend from 5pm-6pm if you have a daughter with sensory sensitivities, when special care will be taken to provide an appropriate environment. A club for kids with special needs; this month Club Inclusive will work with local mosaic artist Cheryl Smith and use recycled glass to create a special piece to donate to Blakely Hall. Kung Fu, classical dancing, fashion show, games and raffles are all in the name of the Chinese Heritage Club’s New Year celebration of the Year of the Dog.

The India Culture Club is bringing Bollywood to Blakely Hall with a live music event featuring the band: Oorja! No matter where you are from Travel Club welcomes all to celebrate the LOVE of Travel on Valentine’s Day! Discussion topics to include romantic European travel, romantic escapes in Washington, romantic trips for wine lovers, and other unique Valentine experiences. Discuss the intersection of the environment and spirituality, as well as practical steps you can take to build a more environmentally sustainable community hosted by Mission Gathering Issaquah. This event will feature Rick Enloe, a professor of Environmental Ethics at the University of Washington and discuss how our belief systems, whatever they are, shape the way we interact with the environment. The keynote will be followed by multiple interactive workshops and activities for children. The Jewish Club closes out this packed month of cultural events by going Under the Sea to celebrate Purim. Make sure you receive the weekly community e-letter and subscribe to the official social media channels to stay informed of latebreaking event details. Also see What’s Happening on pages 14-15.

Staff Update

by Christy Garrard, Executive Director of Highlands Council and Dahlia Park resident In January Highlands Council said goodbye to staff member, Brianna Eigner. Brianna has been involved with Highlands Council since 2007, and since 2013 she has been the Manager of Blakely Hall and a Special Event Consultant for our community clubs and groups. The Highlands Council Board of Trustees and Staff wish Brianna all the best in her future endeavors.

Issaquah Highlands Connections

February 2018 •



February Landscape and Irrigation Schedule Update by Lyle Dickey, IHCA Landscape Manager

The landscape crews were very busy tying up any loose ends in the month of January. Now that February has arrived, crews will be focusing their efforts on spring weed control and any outstanding pruning issues. They will also be doing finish-up housekeeping before the busy seasons of spring and summer arrive. The contractors may be spot spraying annual spring weeds before they become large, and go to seed. We will also be finishing up with our bark installs on both our common and neighborhood maintenance areas. This season the IHCA crew will be installing bark in all the street tree pits throughout the Highlands. We will also be installing bark in several shared community parks and open space areas. This work will all be done by the end of February, if the weather cooperates. This year the IHCA crew will be refreshing most of the trails or walking paths throughout the community with a new layer of pathway gravel. This project will begin the second week of February with hopes of completion by the end of the month. With this project you may encounter pathway closure signs. Please be courteous and use other routes so we may complete our work efficiently and safely. The irrigation crew will be assisting the landscape crews with their duties as time allows. Otherwise, they will be putting the finishing touches on irrigation controls. The irrigation crew will also spend the last few days in February getting ready to start turning on irrigation the first week of March. These and other maintenance task will keep us busy for the month and before we know it, spring will be here.

IHCA Maintenance Updates by Matthew Hendrikse, IHCA Maintenance Supervisor The IHCA Maintenance crew has had an extremely busy 2017 and we are in full swing for 2018. February is the start of our spring and, as the weather changes and starts to warm up, the crew will be doing mechanical maintenance and start the spring maintenance projects. This includes starting to pressure-wash common areas, repair equipment for summer, mend fencing in a few areas, and continue the mailbox rehab. Spring usually brings a lot of rain to Issaquah Highlands. We use this time to power wash many of the sidewalks and concrete in common areas. This year will be no different as we try to make the concrete safer by cleaning off the dirt and moss.

Mailbox refurbishment will also be an ongoing project. We are doing this because the original outer structures are failing and rotting. We are replacing them with a metal pedestal and top cover. Please be aware that we are in contact with the postmaster so that your mail will continue to be delivered as we change the mailbox configuration. We appreciate your cooperation as we continue this project, building safer structures for the future.

Issaquah Highlands Use Restrictions & Rules Reminders Vehicles and Equipment: Parking of commercial vehicles or equipment, mobile homes, recreational vehicles, golf carts, boats and other watercraft, trailers, stored vehicles or inoperable vehicles are prohibited on a Unit (entire lot) other than inside enclosed garages.

Thank you for doing your part.

The IHCA crew will install bark on street trees and in several community parks and open spaces.

ARC Tip of the Month: Did you know‌ By code, each lot developed may only have so much impervious surface (patios, driveways, etc.). Furthermore, Architecture Review Committee (ARC) Guidelines discourage large expanses of impervious surfaces for sustainability reasons. If you are planning to install or extend your patio, please consider using pervious pavers instead of cement so the water can seep through. For any changes to the exterior of your home, such as patios, you must contact the IHCA. More information can be found at

For those homeowners who braved the cold to shovel the snow off adjacent sidewalks during the December snow, we would like to extend an appreciative Kudo! Each homeowner is responsible for their own sidewalk. Thank you to those who moved the snow to make the walkways safe.


• February 2018

Issaquah Highlands Connections


by Erika North, ICHA Senior Community Manager Living in the Pacific Northwest, we get a copious amount of rain. As a homeowner, it is important to know how daily rain affects storm water runoff and the soils around your homes. New development and construction brings with it an intricate maze of pipes, inlets, outlets, roof tops, driveways, patio spaces, lawns and gutters. Many of these water conduits are underground. And since these items are out of sight, they also tend to be out of mind. Well, no longer!

The IHCA will complete construction of its own maintenance shop and offices in February.

IHCA Maintenance Facility

The new Issaquah Highlands Community Association (IHCA) maintenance facility will be completed in February. This facility will be used for maintenance and landscaping operations. It is a much needed 3000 square foot facility which will better enable the IHCA to serve this community. This project was two years in making and just in time for spring projects.

By code, each lot developed may only have so much impermeable surface (surfaces which water cannot penetrate, such as patios, driveways and rooftops). These regulations are also the reason for so many opens spaces within the Issaquah Highlands. The remaining areas must remain “permeable” (open space, grass or landscape areas). Did you ever wonder why in the winter months you see a puddle of water in your lawn? Often, permeable surfaces will reach a super-saturated state, especially with prolonged periods of rain. A super-saturated state is the point at which soils cannot hold any more moisture. The water will collect on the ground surface, or follow crevasses in the soils or seep into foundations. When soils reach this supersaturated state, it becomes viscous like thick pudding, unable to hold form. A footprint on super-saturated soils will frequently fill with water In many cases, yard drains help disperse the moisture, but it is typically the responsibility of the homeowner to keep these lines clear and free-flowing.

The next time it rains please make sure all your gutters drains are free-flowing.

When rain hits impermeable surfaces, it must have somewhere to go. Rainwater hits your rooftop and typically is directed to your gutter and into a storm drain system. Some homes, depending on the soils where they are built, may have more extensive drainage systems. Some have catch basins which collect larger volumes of water and provide for sediment and debris to settle out of the storm water, allowing for cleaner water flow through the drain lines. The unseen storm water infrastructure in Issaquah Highlands captures this storm water and redirects rather than allowing it to settle into the soils. Many neighborhoods actually drain into ponds as part of the storm water collection system. Any blockages in drain lines will cause the water to back up, saturate surrounding soils and eventually cause erosion and ultimately mud slides. It is optimal for homeowners to have their gutters and drain lines cleaned before the rainy season begins. Typically, this is late fall, but it’s never too late!

Keep your gutter clear of debris and free flowing.

Issaquah Highlands Connections

February 2018 •



Updates to the Use Restriction and Rules (UR&R’s) by Jessica Dorsey, IHCA Community Manager

Per the IHCA governing documents, changes to the Use Restrictions and Rules (UR&R’s) must be posted for public comment prior to the Board of Directors formally approving the changes. The following proposed changes to the UR&Rs were presented to the IHCA Board of Directors on November 23, 2017, and approved for publishing for the public comment


period. If you have any comments or questions regarding the proposed changes, please contact Erika North at Deadline for homeowner feedback is Monday, February 19th. Your feedback will be reported to the Board during the February Board meeting on February 21st at 5:30pm.


Addition to section (d) Basketball backboards

When stored, Hoops must be screened from view.

Bodies of Water. Swimming, boating, use of personal flotation devices or other active use of ponds, streams or other bodies of water within the Residential Properties or other portions of Issaquah Highlands is prohibited.

Bodies of Water. Trespassing including but not limited to swimming, boating, use of personal flotation devices, fishing, ice skating, dumping, or other active use of ponds, streams or other bodies of water within the Residential Properties or other portions of Issaquah Highlands is prohibited.

Commune and Rooming House. A Unit shall be used as a single housekeeping unit opposed Commune and Rooming House. A Unit shall be used as a single housekeeping unit as to persons occupying separate rooms or apartments within the Unit or occupying the Unit in a opposed to persons occupying separate rooms or apartments within the Unit or occupying the communal-type arrangement. Unit in a communal-type arrangement, with or without fee or rent.

Decks, Patios, Porches. Decks, patios, and porches are not to be used as storage areas. They must be kept neat and orderly. Permissible items to be displayed or used on balconies, patios, and porches include outdoor furniture, patio lighting, planters (artificial flowers/plants are prohibited), and BBQ grills. Furniture and patio lighting used on decks and patios shall be limited to a type especially designed and manufactured for outdoor use and kept orderly and in good repair.

Decks, Patios, Porches. Decks, patios, and porches are not to be used as storage areas. They must be kept neat, orderly and free of moss or algae. Permissible items to be displayed or used on balconies, patios, and porches include outdoor furniture, unobtrusive patio lighting (not including holiday string lights), planters (artificial flowers/plants are prohibited), and BBQ grills. Furniture and patio lighting used on decks and patios shall be limited to a type especially designed and manufactured for outdoor use and kept orderly and in good repair and shall not unreasonably interfere with a neighbor’s view or vision.

Flags & Banners. Permanent flag poles are permitted with approval from the Architectural Review Committee (ARC) (see ARC Guidelines). Temporary flags and pennants may be displayed from a bracket affixed to a dwelling.

Flags & Banners. Permanent flag poles are permitted with approval from the Architectural Review Committee (ARC) (see ARC Guidelines). Temporary flags and banners may be displayed from a bracket affixed to the exterior of a dwelling.

Addition to section (cc) Signage.

Pet Waste and Security Signage: one professionally printed home security system sign and or one professionally printed pet waste sign, not to exceed one square foot in size, may be displayed on a Unit.

Smoking in Common Areas. Smoking is prohibited on property owned by the Issaquah Highlands Community Association which may include parks, common area, open space, and undeveloped property. “Smoke” or “Smoking” means the carrying or smoking of any kind of lighted or electronic pipe, cigar, cigarette, or any other lighted or electronic smoking equipment.

Smoking in Common Areas. Smoking is prohibited on property owned by the Issaquah Highlands Community Association which may include parks, common area, open space, and undeveloped property. “Smoke” or “Smoking” means the carrying or smoking of any kind of lighted or electronic pipe, cigar, cigarette, nicotine, marijuana, or any other lighted or electronic smoking equipment.

Storm Detention Ponds. For properties adjacent to a Storm Detention Pond, no big leaf maple, cottonwood, alder or willow trees shall be allowed on the lot.

Storm Retention Ponds. For properties adjacent to a Storm Retention Pond, no big leaf maple, cottonwood, alder or willow trees shall be allowed on the lot. Trespassing and dumping are not permitted at Storm Retention Ponds.

Timesharing. A Unit may not be used for operation of a timesharing, fraction-sharing, or similar program, such as short term leases less than six (6) months.

Timesharing. A Unit may not be used for operation of a timesharing, fraction-sharing, or similar program, such as short term leases less than six (6) months. The restriction in this paragraph includes, but is not limited to, online services such as Airbnb, VRBO and other short-term rental agreements.

Vehicles and Equipment. Parking of commercial vehicles or equipment, mobile homes, recreational vehicles, golf carts, boats and other watercraft, trailers, stored vehicles or inoperable vehicles are prohibited on a Unit other than inside enclosed garages; except that construction, service and delivery vehicles shall be exempt from this provision for such period of time as is reasonably necessary to provide service or to make a delivery to a Unit or the Residential Common Area.

Vehicles and Equipment. Parking of commercial vehicles or equipment, food trucks, mobile homes, recreational vehicles, golf carts, boats and other watercraft, trailers, stored vehicles or inoperable vehicles are prohibited on a Unit other than inside enclosed garages; except that construction, service and delivery vehicles shall be exempt from this provision for such period of time as is reasonably necessary to provide service or to make a delivery to a Unit or the Residential Common Area.

Window Coverings. Window coverings that are not specifically designed for windows or not Window Coverings. Window coverings that are not specifically designed for windows or not properly installed are prohibited. properly installed, paper or cardboard, bedlinen, or reflective material are prohibited.

Enforcement of Rules. Each Owner, by virtue of being ultimately responsible for ensuring compliance with the Rules, will be liable for any violations of the Rules by the Owner or its guests, tenants, visitors, agents, employees, or family members and any fines assessed therefore.

Enforcement of Rules. Each Owner, by virtue of being ultimately responsible for ensuring compliance with the Rules, will be liable for any violations of the Rules by the Owner or its guests, tenants, visitors, agents, employees, or family members and any fines assessed therefore. Any duration of absenteeism from the Unit does not relieve the Owner of this responsibility to comply with the Rules or constitute waiver of fines assessed for violations.


• February 2018

Issaquah Highlands Connections


Club Inclusive

Thursday, February 8th, 6pm Blakely Hall February: Love & Friendship

A visit from a mosaic artist. A club for kids with special needs focused on acceptance and inclusion. A safe and fun place where kids can be themselves. Contact Alicia Spinner at Also see ClubInclusiveBlakeyHall/


Open Mic

Latino Club

For more info, contact: Dino Go at

The Latino Club welcomes everyone who would like to celebrate and learn about Latino traditions. Dinner is potluck (food might not have been prepared in a commercial kitchen. Enjoy at your own risk.) Contact Alicia Spinner: RSVP required at

Friday, February 23rd, 6:30pm Blakely Hall

Photography Club

Saturday, February 17th, 10:30am Blakely Hall

Enjoy monthly meetings with guest speakers, share and discuss your work with others, and participate in an online community throughout the month. Contact

Poker Night

No February Meeting Blakely Hall

Purim at Blakely Hall

Wednesday, February 28th, 6:15pm See page 4.

Thursday, February 22nd, 7pm Blakely Hall

Russian Highlanders

The King County Library will bring the Library-2-Go Book Mobile to Blakely Hall. You bring the family and your library card and peruse the curated collection of books. Checkout your favorites! A FREE, fun, afterschool activity for all ages. Next visit: March 27th.

Whether you are a novice or a salty vet looking for some steep competition, you will love our monthly group for $40 buy-in, No-Limit Texas Hold ’em tournament! Don’t forget to join us on Facebook for all the latest info and results at our “Issaquah Poker” group page. Contact Henry at

Minecraft Mania

Rovin’ Fiddlers

This club promotes and preserves Russian cultural heritage for Russian speaking families and everybody who is interested to learn and explore Russian culture. Contact:

February 27th, 3:30pm-4:30pm Blakely Hall

Tuesday, February 13th & 27th, 5pm Blakely Hall

Join fellow elementary and middle school Minecraft enthusiasts from novice to expert as we share our knowledge of the Minecraft world including Redstone, building, surviving the night and more. You’ll need a laptop with licensed Minecraft loaded on it. Club leader is Quinn Ryan at and parent leader is Tim Ryan at

Daddy Daughter Dance Hosted by Summit LIFE Church Saturday, February 3rd, 5pm Blakely Hall See page 24.

Toddler Playgroup

Every Wednesday, 10am No meeting February 21st Blakely Hall Newborn to Age 4

Moms, dads, caregivers and their children are invited for fun, friendship, support and socializing. Contact or Alicia Spinner at Search Facebook for Issaquah Highlands Toddler Playgroup

Arts & Cards Art in Blakely Hall

Every Tuesday, 7pm Issaquah Highlands Fire Station 73

Drop in on our jam sessions. We welcome guitars, flutes, whistles, banjos, mandolins, autoharps, dulcimers, stand up bass, and percussion. All abilities welcome. February 6th location TBD. Email for details. Contact Sue at

Yarns & Threads Group Every Friday, 9am Blakely Hall

All knitters, crocheters, and stitchers are welcome. For more details or questions, please contact Cathie Coulter at

World Cultures Chinese New Year

Saturday, February 10th, 4pm Blakely Hall

Join the Chinese Heritage Club as they celebrate the new year, and the Year of the Dog. Admission donations: $5 Adult, $3 Children & Senior. Under 2 is Free.

India Culture Club

Sunday, February 11th, 3pm Bollywood Musical Evening Blakely Hall

“Intersections” Artists Talk, February 16th, 6:30pm Blakely Hall See Page 21.

India Culture Club and Oorja Band present a family friendly Bollywood musical evening to help celebrate Valentine’s Day. $8/pp; Kids 12 and under are free. There will be lots of fun activities for the kids! See events for tickets.

Bridge Club

Jewish Club

Monday, February 5th, 7pm Blakely Hall

Grab a partner or come solo to play a little Bridge! Bring your own beverage of choice and a snack to share. Whether you are a beginner or a seasoned bridge player, you are welcome to join us. RSVP: Ed Tellman, etellman@pobox. com or Andrew Shanafelt,

Knit for Life®

Every Monday, 1pm Swedish Medical Center, Main Lobby

A network of volunteer knitters in area hospitals, providing physical and mental support in a non-traditional therapeutic environment to cancer survivors, patients and caregivers through knitting. We teach anyone with any skill level. You don’t have to bring anything but yourself. We have all the supplies you will need. Contact:

*All Events are FREE unless otherwise noted.

Meets First Thursday of the Month Thursday, February 1st, 6:30pm Blakely Hall MOVIE: When Jews Were Funny

L’Chaim! A Jewish Club: Join us as we experience different aspects of Jewish culture together! We will meet the first Thursday of every month and focus on exploring various themes such as Jewish cuisine, movies, authors/guest lecturers, and holiday celebrations in an open and inviting atmosphere. All are welcome! Contact Anya Lvova at

Monthly on the 4th Sunday February 25th, 6pm Blakely Hall

Travel Club Night

Wednesday, February 14th, 7pm Blakely Hall See Where It Takes You! A Valentine Evening for Travelers

A night of romance, chocolate, and wine, with wonderful places for you and your Valentine! This won’t be our typical in-depth travel presentation but an interactive discussion about what makes a location romantic or unromantic. Dust off those photo albums and bring your memories to share with a fun group this evening! The bulk of the evening will be unstructured, social time; please bring a bottle of wine or a small nibble to share with your travel-minded neighbors. Join us

Fitness Taichi Fitness Club Every Wednesday, 6:45am Blakely Hall

The ancient Chinese martial art, Taichi, will be offered every Wednesday at Blakely Hall. Participation is free; a donation of a nonperishable food item for the Food Bank is encouraged. Contact:

Hatha Yoga Classes Every Saturday, 10:30am Blakely Hall

Join us every Saturday for free Yoga! Hatha Yoga Classes are for anyone interested, including neophytes wanting to try yoga for the first time, the experienced looking to improve, and anyone in-between. Yoga class will be led by Melanie and her mother, Deyin. For more information, contact

Meditation Group Every Friday, 2pm Blakley Hall

Discover how to find moments to relax the mind. Group leader, Wei Geiger, teaches exercises that promote balance, strength, and calmness. Learn techniques to help deal with stress and strain of a busy life. Free to attend and open to all! Questions? Contact

Running Club

Every Saturday, 8am Central Park Tennis Courts

Please contact Joey at, so he can add you to the distribution list. See Facebook - Issaquah Highlands Running and Multi-sport

Issaquah Highlands Connections

February 2018 •


Toastmasters Club

Join these free yoga classes for a systematic organized teaching as it is supposed to be, as opposed to treating yogasanas as mere exercises. Yoga guru Kiran Balijepalli teaches correct physical posture, and the conceptual basis for these different yogasanas. No prior experience required. Bring your own yoga mat and do not eat anything for at least two hours before (except drinking coffee/tea/milk/water). Contact:

Toastmasters will help you to speak and present in a compelling manner, think quickly and clearly, become a strong leader, and listen effectively. To find out more, visit the club website at or drop in as a guest any Tuesday. We hope to see you soon!

Every Sunday, 7:45am Blakely Hall

Zumba Fitness® Classes Every Tuesday, 7pm Every Saturday, 9am Blakely Hall

Zumba Fitness is the Latin and world rhythm and dance based fitness party that will change the way you think about working out. Grab your workout clothes, your water bottle, and join the party! Free class but please bring a nonperishable food item to donate to the food bank! Contact:

Special Interest Book Club

Thursday, February 22nd, 7pm Book: Absolutely True Diary of Part-Time Indian The book club is a great place to meet neighbors and explore a variety of books. Locations change, so be sure to email to be added to the Facebook group.

Entrepreneur Club

Sunday, February 11th & 25th, 7:30pm Blakely Hall

Are you a small business owner or an entrepreneur looking to kick off a business idea? This is an opportunity for IH entrepreneurs to gather and be a resource for each other. Join us to meet like-minded entrepreneurs, learn about what’s working for others and bounce ideas for feedback. Here’s a chance to extend your network of support. For more information, contact: Johnathan Chu

Environment and Spirituality Sunday, February 18th, 3pm Blakely Hall

When thinking about environmental sustainability, spirituality is far from the first topic we encounter related to this idea. However, the two are intimately connected, both on a communal and individual level. Join us as we explore that connection, learn more about what we as a community can do to preserve our environment, and participate in interactive workshops that will show us how we can start to impact the world around us starting now! Presented by Missiongathering Church. See page 16.

Ladies Lunch Bunch Cancelled in February Blakely Hall Potluck Style; Adults Only

Good friends. Good food. Good times! Looking for an opportunity to meet new neighbors and make new friends? You’re invited to join our ladies’ potluck lunch group. We hope you can join us! Please bring an appetizer or salad to share along with an appetite and a sense of humor. (Food shared is not prepared in commercial kitchens. Consume at your own risk.) Contact Nancy at

Every Tuesday, 7am Swedish Medical Center 1st Floor Flex Space Room (north entrance)

Wine Club

Friday, February 9th, 7pm Blakely Hall

Come out and meet your fellow wine lovers in the Highlands! Are you a wine enthusiast, connoisseur, or just a fan? We usually get together the second Friday of each month to discuss and enjoy wine. If interested please send an email to Dianne at for details. Please RSVP the Tuesday prior to the event.

Women in STEM

Friday, February 9th, 7pm Blakely Hall

Meet others in the community who work in the STEM fields and share your love of science, tech and learning new things. Club format: discussion group. Bring your favorite recent STEM-related news article or research study to discuss, or present your latest data analysis project, Arduino project, or other shameless amateur or professional geekery. Contact: Tonya Lane at

Save the Date Artist Portfolio Night Wednesday, March 7th, 6pm Blakely Hall

Interested in pursuing a career in art? Plan to attend this FREE event featuring a panel of experts discussing how to create and use portfolios. This is a panel discussion event followed by an opportunity for people to sign up for mentoring and perhaps even internships over the summer! With a wide base of practicing artists, artEAST believes they can help foster future artists in our community. This event is open to adults and teens. Contact:

Gardening Class

Thursday, March 15th, 7pm Blakely Hall TOPIC: Edible Landscapes for the Homeowner

IHCA Architectural Review Committee

Tuesday, 2/6, 6pm IHCA Office

Highlands Fiber Network Advisory Group Monday, 2/12, 5pm, IHCA Office

IHCA Finance Committee

Tuesday, 2/13, 5:30 pm IHCA Office

IHCA Board of Directors Meeting

Wednesday, 2/21, 5:30pm, IHCA Office Meetings are subject to change. See Calendar at for more information or date changes.

City Meetings End of Development Agreement City of Issaquah

Highlands Replacement Regulations Community Meeting Wednesday, February 7th, 7pm Blakely Hall

Issaquah City Council asked City staff to return to Issaquah Highlands to update the community on how the Replacement Regulations (that will replace each Development Agreement) have evolved since the introductory community meeting in Spring 2017. Details about residential property regulations, new commercial and retail development will be discussed. Also see page 6.

City of Issaquah Council Land and Shore Committee

Thursday, February 8th, 6:30pm City Hall South

Issaquah Highlands replacement regulations (replace the Development Agreement, DA) are on the agenda. See above. For City of Issaquah governance meetings, see and Issaquah City News in this issue.

Holidays Valentine’s Day

New Resident Orientation

Friday, February 16th

Join your fellow new neighbors for a welcome reception in your honor and a brief presentation regarding the IHCA, Highlands Council, and HFN. For more information contact Even if you have lived here for quite some time but have never attended a resident orientation, you are very welcome as well. Refreshments provided.

Meaningful Movies

Wednesday, March 28th, 6:30pm Blakely Hall

Meaningful Movies brings the greater Issaquah community together through education and advocacy, using the power of social justice documentary films and discussion. For more information, see

For the latest details, see

Governance Mtgs

Jessi Bloom, best-selling author, owner and lead designer of N.W. Bloom EcoLogical Landscapes will show you how to employ design strategies from nature to grow easy edibles that are low maintenance, resilient, and sustainable. Plant once and enjoy the harvest from your edible landscape for years. Basic food forest design is featured and see favorite low maintenance edibles for the Pacific Northwest.

Wednesday, March 21st, 7pm Blakely Hall RSVP:


Wednesday, February 14th

Chinese New Year President’s Day

Monday, February 19th

Issaquah Schools: Mid-Winter Break February 19th - 23rd

Office Holiday Closures

IHCA Office, Blakely Hall, Highlands Council and HFN Offices will be closed February 19th, 2018 President’s Day For daily updates, follow us on:

Subscribe to our weekly e-letter at


• February 2018


Environment & Spirituality by Brian Carr, Missiongathering Church

As a community that has a core value of environmental sustainability, the Highlands is uniquely positioned to have ongoing conversations about the ecological impact of our collective and individual actions. A piece of that conversation which is often overlooked is the impact our spirituality can have, both as a result of the environment and as an influencer on our decisions regarding the environment. The two are intricately linked, often in subtle and unnoticed ways.

“A healthy environment can lead to a healthy spirituality.”

For example, we are surrounded by a world that is creative, beautiful, and renewing, and as a result we are capable of having a spirituality that is creative, beautiful, and renewing. The two, whether we know it or not, go hand in hand. A healthy environment can lead to a healthy spirituality. But take away the fresh smell of mountain air; take away the lush green and blue and brown colors; take away the wildlife that adds a vibrancy to this area; and what are we left with? There is much at stake when we consider the ramifications of environmental degradation. There are literal lives being lost, both human and animal. There are forests, rivers, mountains, oceans, swamps, and entire ecosystems that are threatened on a daily basis.

And then there is the toll in which our spirits and minds take as we lose more and more of what connects us to the physical world around us. Communities are rooted in places, and these places are significant because of their environments. If we lose these connecting environments, don’t we also lose our place? And if we lose our place, what happens to our community? Join us Sunday, February 18th at 3pm at Blakely Hall to learn more about what we as a community can do to preserve our environment and to participate in this interactive workshop about how we can impact our environment in positive ways. Presented by Missiongathering Church. Questions? Ask

Issaquah Highlands Connections


Dear Kari, Recently I went to my dad’s house for dinner, and I accidently met a woman that I think he is dating, as she was leaving his house when I arrived, and I saw them kiss. This was a shock to me, as I did not even know my dad had was dating, or maybe that he even has a girlfriend. He blew off the whole encounter. My parents have been divorced for five years at this point, so if he is dating I would be fine with it, but I am wondering why he is hiding her from me. What do you think? - Bewildered Daughter Dear Bewildered Daughter, It seems that it was both a surprise to you and your father that you met someone he is dating. I am guessing that he is not ready yet to introduce you two formally. This may be because he is still trying to establish where the relationship is going, and how he feels about her. Based on your parents being divorced for five years already and you have not yet met anyone he liked, he appears to be cautious about who meets his children. Take that as a compliment, as he values you and your time more than having you meet people he barely knows himself. I would follow-up with him and ask him further questions about his dating life, while also sharing with him that you would be open to meeting someone he really cared about. -Kari Dear Kari, My son came home for the holidays from college and I think he might be using drugs. He spent most of the visit in his room or meeting up with friends outside our house. His mood went really up, and then really down. I kept asking him if he had a cold or was sick, but then it occurred to me that maybe he was using drugs and that is why his eyes were large and his nose was running constantly. How should I approach him about this? Help! - Concerned Father Dear Concerned Father, First, I recommend that you approach him with this conversation in person if possible (or at least via Facetime/Skype, not text). Having a crucial conversation like this in person allows for us to better connect and show human emotions to our loved ones. This is important when broaching this important subject matter. State your concerns from his most recent visit home, and then ask him if he is using substances or needs support. Be direct. If he states that the is using substances, I recommend that he follow-up with his doctor/and or a counselor for additional support and treatment. The most important first step is assessing what is going on with your son, if anything, then a plan can be formed with support from you and health care professionals in your community. Good luck! I wish you all well. -Kari Kari O’Neill, MSW, LICSW, is a licensed independent clinical social worker and a resident of Issaquah Highlands. We love to hear from our readers. Please email your question to and place the words “Ask Kari” in the subject line. All questions will be answered in upcoming columns. All personal information will remain confidential and not published. This column is for entertainment purposes only. If you are in crisis and in need of support, please contact the Crisis Clinic at 866-427-4747.

Thank You for Five Years! Kari O’Neill is our longest standing resident volunteer writer. She came into Blakely Hall in 2012 with an idea to run an advice column. She wanted to share her social work and counseling expertise with the community. The column has been a fantastic success, bringing us touching stories and challenges that many can relate to. This February column marks her 5th Anniversary. Thank you, Kari!

Issaquah Highlands Connections

Sweet Highlands Dreaming by Marlie Cross, Issaquah Highlands Resident

With the new “Drive with Care” initiative in Issaquah Highlands, and the fairly new distracted driving laws, I thought it was the perfect opportunity to bridge the discussion of health and safety and talk about the risks of drowsy driving. We talk about the importance of removing distractions like texting and phone calls, but did you realize that between 2012 and 2015 over 4,700 car accidents were found to be related to drowsy driving in Washington State alone? It has been shown that driving when tired impairs your ability to focus on the road in the same way drugs or alcohol can. I realize we all have long days (I sometimes pull 18 hours since returning to school!) but we need to make healthy sleep habits a priority, so we can keep ourselves healthy and our neighborhood safe. Here are my top tips for practicing good sleep hygiene to help you stay well rested and alert, even on long days:

February 2018 •



Low Back Pain? Give Movement a Try!

by Nick Murad PT, DPT, IRG Physical and Hand Therapy in Issaquah Highlands

With the dust settling from the hustle and bustle of the holidays and New Year’s resolutions (hopefully) in full swing, our bodies may begin to start talking to us. This is often in the form of lower back discomfort. The prevalence of lower back pain among adults has been reported to be as high as 80% making it the orthopedic equivalent of the common cold. Unlike the common cold, there is often confusion on the management of back issues. The unfortunate default is to avoid movement and to rest. A better alternative is to continue moving and perform exercises that do not stress the lower back and activate muscles that keep our backs healthy. Below are three recommendations to manage lower back pain.

Bedtime-Not Just for Babies

Weekend or weekday it is important to set a routine for your bedtime schedule. It has been proven that our bodies respond best to a consistent schedule (which is why time changes throw us so out of whack!). Find a consistent set of 7-8 hours that you can dedicate to sleep and stick to it as often as possible.

Write it Out- Before Lights Out

Often I find myself stuck awake running a list of things I need to get done and don’t want to forget the next day. Worry and stress can keep you from falling or staying asleep so try keeping a pad of paper and pen next to the bed and write out a list of everything you need to accomplish the next day, reminders, or anything that is keeping you from drifting off. Knowing you have it documented will help your mind relax and help the stress dissipate.

Bridges • Why: Bridges are a staple exercise for lower back health as they engage the gluteal (butt) muscles which protect our lower back. • How: From the starting position in the picture above raise your hips off the ground and focus on squeezing your glutes. • Hold for 10-20 seconds and repeat 4-6 times; perform 3-5x/week

Tranquil Space for more ZZZZs

The saying “Messy room, messy mind” translates to our sleeping quarters as much as it does our workspace. Keeping your bedroom as a place you can think of as a sleep sanctuary is important. Keep it as clean, cool, quiet, and dark as possible. I added black out curtains and an air purifier to my bedroom and it has made all the difference. We can’t always control our hectic schedules or when we will be driving home, but we can work to build habits like these into our lives so that we can be at our best when we do. Not only do I feel more confident driving, but keeping a regular sleep schedule has helped me work out harder and perform better at work and school. Get your family onboard with better bedtimes so you can keep a firm eye on the crosswalks and stop signs. Sweet Dreams & Happy Driving!

Deadbugs • Why: Deadbugs activate core muscles which work to stabilize our spine and protect our lower back. • How: From starting position in picture above alternate kicking out your legs while maintaining back flat against ground and keeping core engaged. • Perform 2 sets of 10 kicks per leg; 3-5x/week

Aerobic Activity • Why: Light aerobic activity is beneficial for lower back pain as it increases blood flow to aggravated areas, decreases stiffness and the endorphins released with exercise can relieve pain. • How: Options for light aerobic activity include brisk walking, riding a stationary bike or swimming. The key is low impact and the activity should not increase pain. • Perform 20-30 minutes 5 days a week. If needed break up duration into smaller intervals if longer durations are not tolerated. When performing these exercises adhere to the stop light principal. If the pain increases during an exercise, stop. If the pain stays the same during the exercises proceed with caution, but continue. If the pain decreases during the exercises, keep going!


• February 2018

Issaquah Highlands Connections


ICTV 21 Covers Everything Issaquah!

Did you know that from the Salmon Days parade to inside City Council Chambers, ICTV 21, the City’s local cable channel, covers everything Issaquah? The City also maintains an online YouTube channel where all Council meetings, Commission meetings, videos regarding issues and milestones, community spirit and outdoor Issaquah are archived and can be easily accessed. Find our YouTube channel at All televised meetings air live online on the City website and on ICTV Channel 21, and are rebroadcast the following day at 10 a.m. and 7 p.m. Keep these tools in mind the next time you’re unable to make a meeting in person or if you’re just curious as to what happens in Council Chambers or in your own City.

City Father-Daughter Dance

Join us February 10th at the Issaquah Community Center, 301 Rainier Blvd. S, for our 18th annual Father-Daughter Valentine Dance, a favorite tradition enjoyed by hundreds of dads and daughters over the years. The dance is open to Grades K-2: 4-6 p.m. and Grades 3-5: 7-9 p.m. The cost is $22 per adult for Issaquah residents, $26 per adult for non-Issaquah residents in advance or $40 at the door.

Dress is casual or formal - just arrive ready to have a good time! Light refreshments are provided. Photo packages available at the dance. If you have daughters in both age groups, choose either timeframe. To register or for questions, contact Cathy at or call 425-837-3300. Watch everything Issaquah on Channel 21 and Youtube! You might even see a neighbor providing input to the City Council during one of their meetings. This is SueAnn Alexander of Forest Ridge.

Issaquah Highlands Connections

Issaquah Highlands Photo Treasure Hunt Every month we publish a photo of something (or somewhere!) in the Highlands. While some months are easier than others, all photos are of something accessible to the public. It is up to you to guess where the photo was taken.

February 2018 •


HIGHLANDS FIBER NETWORK FCC Net Neutrality Ruling Impact on HFN by Frank Pineau, General Manager, Highlands Fiber Network (HFN)

With recent changes on Federal rules regarding Net Neutrality, social media conversations in the Issaquah Highlands have cycled around questions about HFN’s approach to these rules, and also those of our service provider (IsoFusion).

Last month’s photo was of the Little Free Library and light fixture at Summit Park (also known as “Two Slide Park”) at 30th Ave NE and NE Harrison St. This Little Free Library is one of eight libraries in the Highlands, all located at various parks throughout the neighborhood. They were built and placed by the fantastic volunteers at Highlands Council Youth Board, The HY. Visit one today!

As you may or may not know, Highlands Fiber Network (HFN) contracts with IsoFusion to deliver our internet service from Seattle. This long-standing relationship has worked well, providing us with outstanding bandwidth and service. HFN and IsoFusion both support Net Neutrality. HFN believes that all content derived from the internet should be treated equally, that no preference or added costs should be levied for preferred websites. With that, there will be no change in how we do business. Furthermore, Steve Milton, CTO/CTO of IsoFusion has drafted the following statement regarding our contract agreement and their thoughts on Net Neutrality:

IsoFusion Supports Network Neutrality Statement from our CEO: My company has provided internet services to the public since 1994. For the past 23 years I have built networks that served consumers and businesses, large and small, with the express goal of providing the benefits of an open internet to everyone I could reach. Today the FCC rolled back the Network Neutrality provisions that had been enacted over the past several years. Speaking as a small business owner, an internet evangelist, and open source software advocate, I can say that today’s decision by the FCC only benefits the largest providers (Comcast, Verizon, etc.) and will pave the way for a less inclusive, less open, and less free internet and society in the future. In her dissenting statement, FCC Commissioner Mignon Clyburn asked the following question:

Correct guesses were submitted by: Heather Krabbe Ann K Taylor Cathie Coulter

Aasa Holmgren Michelle Jackson Enebo

Nicole Rich Suzanne Matanich

Thanks to everyone who participated! This month’s photo is below. Can you identify the location in this picture?

“Where will the next significant attack on internet freedom come from? Maybe from a broadband provider allowing its network to congest, making a high-traffic video provider ask what more can it pay to make the pain stop.” I can promise that IsoFusion has always worked, and will continue to work to keep our network free from this type of interference. We continually work to find more and better ways to connect our customers to the content they want. The internet was designed to be free and open, not controlled by monopolistic gatekeepers. However, it is not too late to continue to resist the efforts of the Comcast’s of the world. Call your congressional representatives and request that they pass the “Resolution of Disapproval” to overturn the FCC vote.. Sincerely, Stephen Milton CEO/CTO and Co-founder

Fiber to the home, community owned!

If you think you have the answer, please email it to along with your full name. Please be as specific as possible when emailing your response. Responses will be accepted until February 12th. Those with the correct answer will see their name published in next month’s issue of Connections, as well as have their name entered into a drawing for a $25 gift certificate to Bai Tong. Everyone who responds with a correct guess will be entered to win. Every correct guess is an entry! The Photo Treasure hunt is coordinated by volunteer Chelsea Musick of the Central Park neighborhood.


• February 2018

Issaquah Highlands Connections


Steps to Security by Carol Halas, Dahlia Park Resident

Fortunate. That is the word I think of now when I look at where my family lives here in Issaquah Highlands. Three years ago, though, my feelings about relocating to Issaquah were a bit different. We were moving our family here from out of state, and at that time I seriously felt like the challenges were insurmountable, like the stairs in this photograph. What I did know were our priorities, which were finding the right schools and a home in a safe, secure, family-friendly neighborhood. Adjusting to a new city was difficult, especially with teenagers! Tackling these challenges one step at a time was my solution. Thankfully we found what we were looking for in the Highlands, and more. The community was and is safe and secure, the homes are beautiful, and the neighbors are warm and welcoming. In addition to all of that, we discovered the open space filled with community gardens, sports parks, playgrounds, as well as lots of trails for walking, hiking and biking and a beautiful community center, Blakely Hall. All this within walking distance! It did not take long to realize that moving to the Issaquah Highlands resulted in everything clicking into place for our family. We found just the right community. Thankful is another word I think of when I look at where we live. However, in the past few months, I have met many individuals and families living here in the Highlands who are struggling to just get by. They are on very tight budgets and for one reason or another have run into a situation where they cannot pay their rent or utilities. This time of year, with the cold weather, energy bills tend to increase substantially and that is difficult for many people. Thankfully, there are people in Issaquah who can help keep our families or individuals in need. Publicly accessible staircase from 10th Ave NE up to Pinecrest. Photo: Julie Clegg

I volunteer for Issaquah Community Services (ICS) and meet with clients, many of whom live in the Highlands. Many moved here for safety and security for themselves and their families. Like me though, these individuals and families sometimes feel as though the adjustment to a new city seems insurmountable. I suggest taking things one step at a time to overcome what seem like insurmountable challenges. If you need help with those challenges, consider reaching out to these local service organizations for help:

Issaquah Community Services Issaquah Food and Clothing Bank Eastside Baby Corner For assistance, see Provider Partners YWCA Issaquah Family Village Programs at These organizations also provide great opportunities to volunteer or donate in a way that helps local families. See each website above for details.

Issaquah Highlands Connections

February 2018 •



Intersections - Artists’ Talk A Special Artists’ Talk Friday, February 16th, 6:30pm-8pm FREE Blakely Hall

Nature is the point of departure and the destination for the artists in “Intersections”; the first artEAST curated gallery exhibition at Blakely Hall in 2018. These artists use the medium of encaustic to embody the interrelationship between subject and matter. Made of beeswax, damar resin and pigment, it is recognized for its luminous layering capacity to build rich surfaces. The process involves heat fusing layers of paint together to create smooth and textured finishes. Artists in the show include: Stephanie Hargrave, Kim Kopp, Deborah Kapoor and Tara McDermott. These intersections of beauty and vulnerability reaffirm the temporality that make us human. Intersecions on display at Blakely Hall through March 12, 2018.

“Intersections” art exhibit at Blakely Hall includes Threshold by Deborah Kapoor and In Step by Tara McDermott.


Calendar Love in February by Susie Sharp, The Brownstones

With a little planning, February can be a fun month, despite the typical wet and wintry conditions. This year, snow is in the forecast, so plan to stay warm and be entertained! Groundhog Day – February 2 Celebrated in the US and Canada, many believe that if the groundhog wakes up and sees his shadow, he will return to his burrow for six more weeks of winter. If he doesn’t see his shadow, he will remain outside to play, with the prospect of Spring not too far away. I still find this day intriguing, as I didn’t know what a groundhog was when I first came to the States! Just because a groundhog might hibernate for six more weeks doesn’t mean you have to. Blakely Hall is abuzz in February with cultural events, gardening classes, community gatherings, and Valentine’s Day celebrations. Check out for all the local happenings. National Wear Red Day – February 2 February 2 is also the American Heart Association’s National Wear Red Day, in support of women at risk of stroke or heart disease. Aside from the satisfaction of being involved in such a worthy cause, increasing awareness can help save lives. Wear something red and post photos on our Facebook page to inspire other community members to participate and “Go Red for Women.” Try dressing the entire family in red or take a neighborhood stroll with fellow “Go Red” supporters on one of our community’s many walking trails.

Valentine’s Day – February 14 Celebrate Valentine’s Day with friends and couples dining at home. Choose décor that is lighthearted and romantic and plan a special dinner. If you’re like me, time is of the essence, so order takeout out from one of the great restaurants in the Highlands and have a dinner party with far less stress! Valentine’s dinner parties can also be celebrated with children. Encourage children to write little notes for each person at the table. Many years ago, my nursery-age daughter was asked to write about me and commented that she loved her Mommy (who had white teeth)! Another option is to join Travel Club at Blakely Hall for a special night learning about the best romantic getaways. See for more information. February is also a great time to plan for the year ahead. My goal for 2018 is to plan my summer concerts in advance using a large paper desk planner. I want to have at least one outing a month that involves music or art. This leads into part B of the project – inviting friends for coffee and encouraging them to join me in attending a concert or educational outing. We have our local Concerts On the Green in Issaquah to look forward to, as well as the delightful Chateau Ste. Michelle concert season. There will be more to come in next month’s column, but in the meantime, there is an option to sign up for advanced notification regarding upcoming performances at


• February 2018

Issaquah Highlands Connections

SCHOOL SPOTLIGHT Issaquah School District

Grand Ridge Elementary

2/1 2/13 2/14 2/15 2/15 2/19 - 23

2/2 2/6 2/7 2/13 2/26 2/28

ISD Parents Information Night Levy Ballot Submission Due School Board Meeting @ 7:00 P.M ISD Parent Training: Community Resources @ PCMS STEMposium Second Winter Break – No School

Issaquah School Foundation 2/7

Dining for Kids @ Agave

Challenger Elementary


Popcorn Friday Spelling Bee

Clark Elementary 2/16

Dads @ Recess

Popcorn Friday Kindergarten Informational Meeting After-School Moving “Sing!” 5th Grade Musical Concert Read Across America Challenge Begins Book Swap

Issaquah Middle School 2/1 - 5 2/2 2/13 2/15 2/16

Clash of the Cans Food Drive Career Fair Festival Orchestra Concert Band Concert All School Spirit Day

Pacific Cascade Middle School 2/1 - 5

Clash of the Cans Food Drive

Endeavour Elementary

Gibson Ek High School

2/2 2/6 2/8 2/15

2/3 2/6 2/15

Popcorn Friday Student Banking Day Eager Reader Ends - LAST DAY PTSA Membership Meeting

Winter Ball Gibson Ek Information Night 2018-19 Applications Due

Issaquah High School

**Be sure to check individual web sites for details and updates

Save the Date! May 5th, 2018 – Grand Ridge PTSA Dinner and Auction To donate, sponsor, provide contacts or suggestions, or to volunteer, please email Auction Chair, Nancy Link, at

Nourish Every Mind Breakfast and Luncheon in May For information, to donate, volunteer, or captain a table, please visit

“Swingin’ in Vienna,” with IHS Evergreen Philharmonic and Jazz Band

“Swingin’ in Vienna” is a wonderful evening of dancing and desserts. We bring a hardwood dance floor and set up the orchestra to play Viennese Waltzes on one side, and the jazz band to play big band swing-era tunes on the other. When a rest is needed, or little pick-me-up, we’ll provide fancy desserts. The Evergreen Philharmonic and IHS Jazz Band will perform for your dancing pleasure! This event attracts serious ballroom dancers, as well as high school students just learning. For Valentine’s Day, why not treat your sweetie to an enchanted evening of dancing and live music? Date: February 10th, 2018 Time: Doors open at 7:00 PM, Dancing starts at 7:30 PM Tickets: At the door, $25 Adults and $20 Students and Seniors Address: Issaquah High School, Performing Arts Center, 700 2nd Ave SE, Issaquah, WA 98027

2/8 2/9 2/10

Newcomers and Ambassadors Social @ Masa PTSA Membership Meeting - Teachers Grants Voting Swingin’ In Vienna Concert - Jazz and Orchestra

GRE Book Swap 2018

Continue to share the love of reading, especially those outgrown, dusty books hiding in the corner shelf, by donating gently used books to the Grand Ridge PTSA Book Swap. Students drop off gently-used books in designated collection stations at the school, during the last few weeks of February. Then, join the PTSA on February 28, 2018, 6 – 8pm, for the Book Swap, which is an entirely free event for all Grand Ridge families, regardless of donated books! It’s an easy and inexpensive way to encourage reading, and swap for a few “new to you” books. Cookies & milk are provided, and chaperones required. Happy Reading!

GRE Kindergarten Registration Information Night

It’s that time again, kindergarten registration. If you have a child, or know someone who has a student turning 5 years old by August 31, 2018, there will be an informational, parentsonly meeting on Tuesday, February 6th, 2018 at 6:00pm, in the Grand Ridge Elementary Commons. GRE will review the lengthy registration process in detail, answer questions, and hand-out registration packets to all prospective students. Registration begins at the beginning of March. For more information, contact GRE office, or visit

Grab Your Hat and Read with the Cat! Celebrate Read Across America Day at GRE

For those who are ages six, sixteen, sixty-four, or more, we have all kinds of great things in store for “Read Across America.” The Grand Ridge PTSA is calling on everyone, both young and old, to celebrate the joys of reading, especially on Dr. Seuss’s birthday, as we’re rereading the classic Oh, the Places You’ll Go! Our Grand Ridge PTSA reading party starts on February 26th, 2018, because we’re off to great places, and today’s our day! Stay tuned for further details, and information coming home soon!

Issaquah Highlands Connections

February 2018 •



by Tracie Jones, Wisteria Park

ISD Special Services Seminars: Understanding and Utilizing Community Resources

Parent Training Opportunities, from the ISD Special Services Department and the Arc of King County, provide informational meetings to help parents throughout the district. These are open to parents, guardians, caregivers, and teachers of students with disabilities. This month, learn more about Community Resources: DDA services, respite care, behavior support, and more. February 15th, 6:30-8:30pm, at Pacific Cascade Middle School.

2017-18 PTSA Awards: Nominate Impactful Individuals TODAY!

Know a special teacher or community member whose invaluable contributions support the greater good of all ISD? Take a few minutes to help our schools honor those dedicated volunteers, educators, and advocates from our community by nominating exemplary individuals with the 2017-2018 Golden Acorn Award, Outstanding Educator Award, and Outstanding Advocate Award. For more information and nomination forms, visit your local PTSA website. The process is quick and easy, and goes a long way in recognizing those who positively impact the lives of our children - EVERYDAY!

Levy Issues- What’s on the February Ballot 2018

Issaquah School Board approved three renewal Levies for the upcoming 2018 February Ballot: A Two-Year Educational Programs Levy and Operations Replacement Levy, One-Year Transportation Replacement Levy, and Four-Year Critical Repair/Technology Replacement. For important information explaining how ISD Levy Funds, see levy-issues-february-2018 -Email comments or questions to, or contact Chief of Finance & Operations, Jake Kuper, at 425.837.7024.

ParentWiser: Stress and Supporting your Child’s Successful Development, with Laura Kastner, Ph.D.

Surveys of school children show stress levels at all-time highs, citing school, home, peers, and fears for the future. Parents want their children to work hard, but sometimes these goals intensify the stress. What are parents to do? This discussion focuses on what parents can do to enhance children’s resilience, social and emotional competence, and healthy resistance to stress. The good news: by making family health a priority, parents will build skills for improving their own well-being, as well as their children’s. For parents only, on February 7th, 2018, at the IHS Theater, starting at 7:00pm. Free for PTSA Members of Issaquah District schools, $10 donation requested of non-members. For more information, visit

ISD STEMposium

Issaquah School District, in collaboration with the Issaquah Schools Foundation, is embarking upon a new endeavor to engage students: STEMposium. Teachers and students are invited to showcase their integrative STEM skills and knowledge through classroom projects, school clubs, and student competitions. In addition to classroom booths, STEM related industries will share their work in an Open House format. February 15th, 2018, at IHS Commons, from 6:00 - 8:00 PM.

PCMS Lunch Help Walkabout Program Volunteers Needed

PCMS Lunchtime Walkabout Program needs volunteers! Lunch gives kids the opportunity to unwind, socialize, and play outside during lunchtime. PCMS needs parents to volunteer during lunch, supervising outside courtyard areas, picnic tables and basketball hoops. Parents are welcome to shoot baskets, throw a football, or lounge outside. Volunteering is a thirty-minute commitment. Consider signing-up, bring a friend, grab coffee, and hang out with kids. Links for LUNCH HELP sign-up at, under PTSA Programs, and specify A, B, or C lunch. For more information or questions, contact Nicole Garcia, at

Challenger Elementary PTA BOX TOP COLLECTION WA State PTA Men’s Essay Contest – Men Making a Difference

The PTA essay contest explores important contributions men make in the lives and education of children – from children’s perspectives. Fathers, uncles, grandfathers, brothers, step-fathers, mentors, neighbors, pastors, coaches, and friends – impact our children. These essays, from the student’s perspectives, will serve to inspire positive male engagement, spotlighting male role models who profoundly impact others’ lives. When male figures are involved with students schooling, those kids enjoy school more, and perform better in and out of school. For more information, visit Application deadline: March 1st, 2018.

WA State PTA Scholarship Opportunities

Washington State PTA offers three $3,000 scholarships, and one $1,000 scholarship, to graduating seniors from Washington State public high schools with an active PTA, starting college (either two-year or four-year) in the fall. Upon receiving proof of acceptance to college, WSPTA will issue a check to the school the recipient will attend. The scholarship may be used to offset the cost of tuition, books, supplies, room and/or board. Application and requirement information is available at Application deadline is March 1st, 2018.

Our next box top deadline is February 23rd, 2018! Continue to collect and turn-in box tops. Collection sheets are located by the PTA Board, just inside main school doors. Or, simply put box tops in a Ziploc bag, with your child’s and teacher’s name, and bring to school. For your convenience, there will be a collection box in the office, too. The class that turns in the most box tops by the deadline will earn coupons for free frozen yogurt at TCBY. Contact Stephanie Hollander,, with questions.

Clark Elementary After-School Adventure Program (A.S.A.P.)

This Issaquah program offers weekly sports & fitness, swimming, and enrichment activities run by enthusiastic Issaquah Parks and Rec staff. Limited spots are available! Meets at the Issaquah Community Center every school day, through end of school year. Program meets from 3:35-6:00 PM every day; Wednesdays from 1:25-6:00 PM. $395/month for Issaquah residents. Please call 425-837-3300 for registration and information. afterschool

What Parents Need to Know about ISD

Come learn about the Issaquah School District. Parents and staff will present information about school programs, behavior expectations, grading, assessment, communicating with schools, and other topics regarding Issaquah School District, on February 1st, 2018. Interpretation available. Questions, contact Lorna Gilmour, at


• February 2018

Issaquah Highlands Connections

Issaquah Highlands Connections

February 2018 •

VOLUNTEER OF THE MONTH Chelsea Musick | February Volunteer of the Month It’s not easy to volunteer with two young kids in tow - or to find volunteer opportunities for the evenings when I finally have a few minutes to myself. I had to learn a new reality after I had got married and had kids, as previously I had spent a lot of my evenings and weekends working with Special Olympics and other programs for people with developmental disabilities. I just didn’t have the same amount of time to offer as I got older. We moved to Issaquah Highlands in 2012 and through my research I discovered so many volunteering options in the Highlands – and many that I could do from home and coordinate around my schedule. And what better way to get to know my neighbors and community? I jumped at the chance to volunteer from the comfort of my chair! I started by offering to coadminister the “Issaquah Highlands Free Exchange” Facebook group. I enjoyed it so much that when the opportunity arose, I offered to help administer the “unofficial” Issaquah Highlands Facebook group. I love hearing from my neighbors (even if it’s just about parking or dog messes).

“What better way to get to know my neighbors and community?”

In 2015, I pitched the idea of a monthly “Photo Treasure Hunt” to Nina Milligan, Editor of Connections news - yet another opportunity for me to fit volunteering around my schedule. As somewhat recent arrival to the city, it was also a great way to find the hidden gems and have an excuse to really explore the neighborhood. All those experiences led to more hands-on opportunities, such as helping to organize the 2017 Shop Local Holiday Bazaar at Blakely Hall. I felt I finally had enough free time to commit to something away from my keyboard. I made a lot of friends in the community, and I enjoyed getting out from behind my computer and spending time with them. I also found the more I volunteered the more I want to volunteer.

Volunteer of the Month, Chelsea Musick with her husband Grant, son Caius and daughter Adara.

This area is full of wonderful opportunities to volunteer from home and around your own schedule. You don’t have to have to commit to hours and hours of volunteering time. There are so many options if you are looking to start off small - you just have to find them. Editor’s Note: If you are interested in volunteering in Issaquah Highlands, see more information at



• February 2018

Issaquah Highlands Connections


February: a Good Month For “Mental Preparedness” by Amanda Keverkamp, CERT Team 9, Resident of Crofton Springs

We’ve all heard the adage: “Practice makes perfect.” That is true for emergency preparedness, too. Don’t worry, I’m not suggesting you and your family practice your fire escape plan in the freezing rain (although, you are more than welcome to do so). What I do suggest is you take a few moments to think through and visualize your fire escape plan. A “mental rehearsal,” of sorts. It’s true that we all know practice makes perfect, but what if we just don’t have the time? The good news is that mental rehearsals can be done anytime, anywhere, and according to Psychology Today, researchers have found that mental rehearsals can improve performance by 35 percent! While you’re heading into the movie theater or the mall, take a few minutes to take stock of what’s around you. If you suddenly faced an emergency, would you know where the closest exit is?

From deciding where you are going to park, or where you are going to sit in the movie theater, situational awareness is part and parcel to emergency preparedness. Being prepared is more than plans that we make and kits we put together – it is a mindset. You don’t need to be paranoid, just make everyday decisions with purpose. Upcoming preparedness events: • Issaquah Health and Safety Fair: February 24 at Pickering Barn (1730 10th Ave. NW) • Issaquah Community Emergency Response Team Spring course: Begins March 14 Visit for more information. Happy Valentine’s Day! If diamonds are too expensive but chocolates are not enough, think about getting your special Valentine their own emergency kit. You can lovingly put their kit together yourself or choose a premade kit out from any number of online vendors. A great place to start is

Issaquah Highlands Connections

February 2018 •


ISSAQUAH HIGHLANDS COMMUNITY ASSOCIATION 1011 NE High Street Suite 210 Monday–Friday 9:00am to 5:00pm

MAIN PHONE: 425-427-9257 | AFTER HOURS: 425-223-8887 Responsible for:

Property Management Enforcement of CCRs, Rules, Regs Architectural Review Common Area Landscape

Funded by:

Annual IHCA Assessments Neighborhood Assessments

Governing Body

Board of Directors ihcaboard Jim Young, President Rossie Cruz, Vice President Dan Vradenburg, Treasurer Walt Bailey, Secretary Jim Noel , Director Rob Knight, Director

Sarah Hoey, Executive Director, 425-507-1120 Erika North, Senior Community Manager, 425-507-1121 Barbara Uribe, Senior Accountant and Benefits Coordinator, 425-507-1123 Joon Chang, Director of Accounting, 425-507-1117 Soledad Ruiz, Account receivable specialist, 425-507-1119 Jessica Dorsey, Community Manager, 425-507-1113 Lyle Dickey, Landscape Manager Billing Inquiries, 425-507-1119

Blakely Hall

Award-winning Blakely Hall has a feeling and comfort of a lodge. It is a wonderful place for parties with 70 or more guests, fund raisers, galas, and any type of reception. Blakely Hall can accommodate up to 200 guests. In addition to the atmosphere Blakely Hall will give you, there is a patio with outdoor seating and BBQ grill that is available for rent.



Blakely Hall 2550 NE Park Drive Monday–Friday 8:00am to 5:00pm

MAIN PHONE: 425-507-1107 | Responsible for:

Community Events Blakely Hall Community Center Facility Rentals Community Garden Facebook E-Letter Connections Newspaper

Governing Body

Board of Trustees Larry Norton, President Patrick Byers, Vice President David Ngai, Treasurer Philip Nored, Secretary Fred Nystrom, Trustee Ami Desai-Mehta, Trustee

Funded by:

Sponsorships/Grants & Advertising Community Enhancement Fees (1/4 of 1% on sale of home) 12¢ per sq. ft. retail/commercial | $50/door per year for apartments Christy Garrard, Executive Director, 425-507-1110 Nina Milligan, Communications Manager, 425-507-1111 Michele McFarland, Finance Manager & Office Administrator, 425-507-1108 Vicki Grunewald, Graphic Design & Digital Marketing Coordinator, 425-507-1109 Julie Clegg, Creative Coordinator | Lindsey Pinkston, Administrative Assistant, 425-507-1107


Notary Service by Appointment • Per signature fee applies • Fax Sending & Receiving • Fax sending, local $.50 per page • Fax sending, long distance $1.00 per page • Fax receiving, $.50 per page • Limited B/W Photocopying, $.05 per page • Lost & Found

Frank Pineau General Manager Support: 425-427-0999

Governing Body

Board of Directors Larry Norton Allen Enebo Tim Underwood Charlie Herb Emergency: 9-1-1 Issaquah Police (non-emergency) 425-837-3200 WA Dept of Fish & Wildlife 425-775-1311 Emergency Contact Number For after-hours emergencies not involving police and fire response or gas or water main breaks, contact IHCA at 425-223-8887 issaquahhighlands Sign up for our weekly E-Letter at


Blakely Hall Meeting Room

The Conference room is perfect for your meeting or seminar. It is private. It can accommodate up to 46 guests. A screen is provided as well as comfortable conference chairs and tables that can be configured to your liking. There is a wash station, and a countertop to place your refreshments. To inquire about booking facilities at Blakely Hall, please contact Brianna at 425.507.1107 or email

Fire Station Meeting Room

The Fire Station 73 meeting room is great for community or group meetings. It comes with tables and chairs. It can accommodate up to 85 guests in a meeting setting or comfortably 30 guests. There are two whiteboards for writing down your ideas and agenda. There is also a television with a DVD player for your instructional videos. Because this is a city building they do not allow religious, partisan, or for-profit meetings to take place in this facility. To inquire about booking the Fire Station Meeting Room, please contact Fire Station #73 at 425.313.3373.

CONNECTIONS Connections: By Community, For Community Connections News is a monthly community newspaper written mostly by volunteerresident writers, edited and published by Issaquah Highlands Council. Connections helps Highlands Council fulfill its mission to develop a vibrant and caring community committed to service, diversity, stewardship and well-being. Join the Connections Team Highlands Council is always looking for volunteer contributing writers, photographers and graphic designers. For more information, contact Nina Milligan, Communications Manager, at Submit an Announcement for “Milestones” See your announcements published in the new life “Milestones” section of Connections. We accept birth/adoption, graduation, marriage, obituary and culturally-recognized life milestone announcements for Issaquah Highlands residents only. See submission form and guidelines at Interested in advertising in Connections? We welcome media sponsors at any time during the year. Connections printed and distributed monthly, free of charge, to every address in Issaquah Highlands (residences and businesses). We also distribute through local gathering spaces, such as coffee shops and the Metro Park and Ride. Circulation: Approximately 4,500

Display ad pricing begins at $75/month. Discounts available for 3, 6 and 12 month contracts. Online advertising is also available. For more information, contact Nina Milligan, Communications Manager, at . More information, ad packets/pricing, editorial calendar and electronic archives can be found here: issaquahhighlands. com/connect/connections-news/ Opinions expressed either by paid advertisers or editorial content do not necessarily reflect the views of Highlands Council or this newspaper. Highlands Council reserves the right to accept or refuse submissions, and to edit content. We also reserve the right to refuse advertising or content that in our opinion does not reflect the standards of this paper.



• February 2018

Issaquah Highlands Connections

February 2018  
February 2018