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Wednesday August 7, 2013


The Emerald City Dance Company competition team practices their moves. At Disneyland, the girls will be split into two age groups for the performance, but the team rehearses together. CONTRIBUTED

Celebrated savant artist Michael Tolleson creates a 24-by48-inch painting in 60 minutes.

Autism Day features demonstration by renowned savant artist Celebrated savant artist Michael Tolleson will put his special gift on display as part of the 13th Autism Day WA celebration Aug. 10 at Jubilee Farm in Carnation. The entire day is presented free of charge for participants and vendors. Tolleson will produce an original acrylic painting from the center stage gazebo at the fun-filled day of free activities for families and caregivers of people on the autism spectrum. More than 400 people attended the event at the working farm last summer. “Michael has generously agreed to donate his time and the painting he creates to help our cause,” said Autism Day founder Lynn Banki, of Sammamish. “Our goal every year is to provide contact with real-life resources available to families touched by autism.” Activities have been scheduled from 11 a.m. until 3 p.m. Tolleson is scheduled to begin painting at noon. The completed painting will be donated

to a charity that supports children with autism. The fun-filled day will give families and caretakers an opportunity to relax in the peaceful surroundings of an actual working farm. In addition to the Tolleson exhibition, Banki said services designed specifically for adults diagnosed with autism have been added to the list of services that will be available. The artist is best known for completing impressionistic images of animals and landscapes in no more than 30 minutes. Shadows play a major role in many of his pieces. Tolleson has produced and sold more than 350 paintings in the past 24 months. “These are not my images,” he said. “I am only the vessel that holds the brush while the painting is being created.” Some recent creations by Tolleson are on display at his gallery at 570 First Ave. S. near the stadiums in Seattle. Learn more about the free Autism Day at www.

DISNEYLAND DANCERS Local troupe prepares for performance at Happiest Place on Earth By Erin Hoffman While a lot of kids are spending their summers watching cartoons and relaxing, the girls from Sammamish’s Emerald City Dance Co. are hard at work preparing for their visit to Disneyland, where they have been invited to dance in the Disney Parks Christmas Day Parade. Chelsea Lanese, dance company owner and competition instructor, as well as an ex-parade performer at Walt Disney World in Orlando, was thrilled when the entire team, made up of dancers from Issaquah and Sammamish, was selected to participate. “It’s really special,” she said. “It’s such a proud moment to watch them dancing down Main Street.” Last year, some of Lanese’s students danced in the parade, but all they had to do was register. This year, the rules changed and a rigorous audition process was put in place. The girls were split into two age groups: 6-9 and 10-13. Each age group had to learn a dance routine from a tape sent by Dance the Magic, the company that helps put on the event,


Kate Dixon, 9, strikes a pose during a break in rehearsal. and perform it on tape. The Dance the Magic judges then reviewed the tapes and decided whether each individual girl was up to par. Luckily, the girls were up to the challenge. “It’s a pretty big accomplishment because they’re so brand new to dance,” Lanese said, adding that

“It’s really special. It’s such a proud moment to watch them dancing down Main Street. ... It’s a pretty big accomplishment because they’re so brand new to dance.” — Chelsea Lanese Emerald City Dance Co. owner

See DANCERS, Page B3

Social media reunites camera, owners

By Erin Hoffman


An early 2013 contest entry of a bald eagle in the highlands was photographed by Dave Taylor.

Win $100 in annual photo contest The annual Issaquah/ Sammamish Amateur Photo Contest is already receiving entries from photographers eager to win the $100 prize in each of three categories. The strength of the Issaquah/Sammamish community as depicted in an entry is the top criteria for a winning photo, but originality, composition and lighting are also judged. Entries are accepted in three categories — People,

Animals/Nature and Scenic. All submissions come with permission for the photo to be reproduced in any publication of The Issaquah Press or Sammamish Review. Enter by emailing photos (minimum 300 dpi resolution) to contest@isspress. com. Include the photographer’s name, address, phone number and the story of the photo. Deadline is Aug. 11. Winners will be announced Sept. 4.

As a paddle board instructor, Sharon Ilstrup is used to finding junk in Lake Sammamish. But on July 15, she discovered something a little more valuable: a waterproof camera. Ilstrup turned on the Cannon PowerShot waterproof digital camera and found about 50 pictures of a family outing that had survived being left in the water. Instead of leaving the camera, she decided to take matters into her own hands. “I didn’t think twice about keeping the camera,” she said. When she got home, she uploaded six pictures to a Facebook album entitled, “Found Camera,” hoping someone would recognize

Bark for Life is Aug. 10 The Issaquah Highlands Bark Park will be the home of this year’s Bark for Life event. Bark for Life is an event to raise funds for the

the people she dubbed, “Grammy,” “Pappy” and “The Uber-Attractive Couple.” The album was shared more than 100 times by friends and family, and Ilstrup was surprised when nobody claimed it. However, Ilstrup’s social media detective work got a boost when KOMO news picked up the story. About an hour after the story aired on July 23, someone called to claim ownership. The camera belonged to Ken Graves, known to Ilstrup and Facebook as “Pappy.” His wife, Theo, the “Grammy” in the pictures, recognized the family photos on the news, and Ilstrup was put in touch with “The Uber-Attractive Couple,” the Graves’s daughter Katie Dunivan and her husband Luke Dunivan. The Dunivans

and Ilstrup, both Redmond residents, arranged to pick up the camera at Marsh Park, in Kirkland, as the Graves lived too far away

to justify the drive. “It felt great. What a

American Cancer Society and honor all the dogs who have survived cancer as well as the people who helped take care of them. A variety of activities, shows and vendors will be at the event this year

including Purrfect Pet Services, Rachelle Erikson Photography and Blue Dog Bakery. Also joining Bark for Life is PetSmart, which will be sponsoring contests that range from “cutest ugliest dog” to “best trick.”

Bark for Life will take place from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Aug. 10. Registration will begin at 10:30 a.m. The cost is $10 for pets and owners. For information, contact Erika Simon at


Katie Dunivan, Sharon Ilstrup and Luke Dunivan (from left) meet at Marsh Park, in Kirkland, where Ilstrup returned the Dunivan’s lost camera she found at Lake Sammamish State Park.

See CAMERA, Page B3




Wednesday August 7, 2013

Obliteride cancer fundraiser pedals through Issaquah Obliteride, a bike ride to raise money for cancer research, will come through Issaquah Aug. 10. The ride starts in Seattle’s Magnuson Park. There are four different length rides — 25 miles, 50 miles, 100 miles and 180 miles. The longest ride loops north over Lake Washington before swinging south. Part of the route goes along the East Lake Sammamish Trail, then across state Route 900, before continuing on to Tacoma, where the riders will spend the night. The next day, they’ll return to Magnuson Park in Seattle to

end the ride. “Cancer affects all of us and we want the entire community to feel welcome to come on out to Magnuson Park and cheer on all the riders who have raised money for cancer research at Fred Hutch,” said Obliteride’s executive director Amy Lavin in a statement. “We’re lucky to have such an amazing institution right in our backyard.” A finish-line festival with a full lineup of entertainment, including family-friendly bands, is planned for Obliteride weekend. Contributing to the celebration

ON THE WEB For more information about Obliteride, or to register, to ride or volunteer, go to www. are The Nowhere Men, playing music of The Beatles, 80s Invasion and Kalimba, an Earth, Wind & Fire cover band. Saturday, the Radio Disney Kid’s Zone will keep the little ones entertained. Sunday, the Not-Its!, a popular adult-savvy children’s group playing cool

children’s music, takes the stage. Children will also enjoy an 18foot slide, a hydro blaster, bouncy house, bike-related crafts, a prize wheel and more. Guests can purchase food and beer at the park, with cash and proper photo ID. Parking is limited at Magnuson Park so participants are encouraged to take a free shuttle from the E1 parking lot at University of Washington. Those interested in riding in Obliteride may still have time to register. “Nearly anyone can do the 25mile route,” Lavin said. “There are a few hills but nothing too in-

timidating, so dust off your bike or borrow a friend’s and join us!” Community members are invited to get involved by lining the routes and cheering on riders. Bring signs honoring loved ones or friends who have battled cancer or are in the fight today. Riders will leave Magnuson Park at 7:30 a.m. and most will return between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. on Aug. 10. The 180-mile riders finish on Sunday after spending the night at University of Puget Sound in Tacoma. Maps of the four routes are available on the Obliteride website.

Cougar trail run final race is Aug. 10 The final event in the four-run Cougar Mountain Trail Run series is Aug. 10. The event, co-presented by the Seattle Running Club and Northwest Trail Runs, has been a Pacific Northwest tradition for the past 11 years. This month’s race boasts multiple courses: a 5K as well as 13- and 26-mile paths that loop through some of Cougar Mountain’s 36 miles of trails. This is the last race of the series which builds up in length and intensity through the summer. The first event offered 5- and 10-mile courses in May. The run series has raised more than $111,000 for King County Parks since its inception in 2003. Registration fees range between $20 and $40, depending on the race, and $15 of each registration fee will benefit King County Parks & Recreation. There is no day-ofrace registration available. Register for this race online at http://bit. ly/15kermH to participate. CONTRIBUTED

Andrew Evans sits with his open wheel F1600 Spectrum Honda. The Skyline High School student is considering a career in racing as his successful summer nears its end.

PLAYIN’ WITH HOT WHEELS Racing career accelerating for Skyline student Andrew Evans By Neil Pierson When Andrew Evans is strapped into the seat of his 1,600 cc Spectrum Honda and is breezing down a straightaway at 140 mph, life is perfect.

“It’s a passion, and I love doing it,” he said. “I couldn’t imagine doing anything else.” Evans, a 15-year-old student at Skyline High School, has had gasoline vapors in his blood since he first began racing go karts eight years ago. What originally started as a

hobby, however, has rocketed into the category of potential career after he became the youngest driver in the history of Lynx Racing Academy, which Evans describes as “one of the most highly-decorated Formula Atlantic teams of all time.” Since his signing with Lynx in April, Evans has had a chance to compete in some high-octane environments. Alongside teammate Alex Keyes of Folsom, Calif., he’s

put in some strong performances in the 2013 Pacific Formula F1600 series, which encompasses 15 races over six weekends at four West Coast tracks. With four races left, Keyes and Evans are holding their own: Keyes sits in third place with 187 points and Evans is fourth with 173. The season continues Sept. 7-8 in ButtonSee RACER, Page B5

Local players help lacrosse team win national titles Issaquah High sophomores (from left) Jake Lindahl, Jordan Dondoyano, Jake Collins and Ryan Egland helped the Team Washington Cohos lacrosse team to a pair of tournament championships during a recent East Coast road trip to New Jersey and Maryland. CONTRIBUTED

By Neil Pierson Lacrosse hasn’t been recognized as an official high school sport in Washington, so it’s often difficult for local players to compete when they go up against more established East Coast programs. Don’t tell that to the Team Washington Cohos, a group of sophomores from the Puget Sound area who dominated a pair of East Coast tourna-

ments in July. Four of the players attend Issaquah High School, and along with Issaquah head coach Brandon Fortier, they spent the better part of two weeks successfully playing at high levels. Team Washington has been around since Fortier’s playing days in the mid-1990s, he said, but switched formats a few years ago. Now there are See LACROSSE, Page B5

Sammamish hosts Mud & Chocolate trail run Running, chocolate and mud are not often uttered in the same sentence. However, the unlikely trio will come together for the Mud & Chocolate Trail Run at Sammamish’s Soaring Eagle Park on Aug. 11. The event, hosted by NRG Running, features a 4.5-mile run and a half marathon, through the winding, single-track trails of the park, which may or may not include a bit of mud, depending on the weather. Finishers receive chocolate medals as well as the opportunity to feast on treats at the chocolate finisher’s table. It costs $35 to participate in the 4.5-mile run, and $50 to participate in the half marathon. Both races begin at 9:30 a.m. Register online at to participate. Learn more at www.mudandchocolate. com. Soaring Eagle Park is at 26015 E. Main Dr., Sammamish.

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The Issaquah Press Seniors: Get involved with a Platinum Pass The Issaquah School District offers an all-access Platinum Pass to seniors 65 and older who live in the district. The pass allows seniors free admission to virtually all events in Issaquah schools, including athletic home games, plays and concerts. Holders can show their pass at the ticketing booth for entrance the day of the event, but the district recommends people secure tickets in advance or arrive early in case events sell out. The pass is not valid at fundraising events where admittance fees contribute to funds raised or to cover the overhead cost. The Platinum Pass is available at the main office of schools in the district or at the district administration office, 565 N.W. Holly St. Find more information on the Platinum Pass at www.issaquah.wednet. edu/district/platinumpass. aspx.

New thrift store Lost Treasures opens The thrifty boutique Lost Treasures opened July 1 in Issaquah. Owner Elizabeth Benzinger moved the store from the Eastgate area to downtown Issaquah at 230 Rainier Blvd. N. Lost Treasures offers second-hand clothes, shoes, accessories, jewelry, tools, books, music, DVDs, video games, electronics, antiques, collectables, kid stuff and more. Benzinger also promotes recycling, rewarding customers who drop off items, no matter the size, with a 50 percent off voucher good for their entire purchase. Whatever cannot be used in her store, Benzinger donates to local charities. In addition, the store features a reading nook for children and students to do homework or just come read. Call 777-0452.

Gevers Wealth Management moving to different location After eight years in the LakePlace Office building in Issaquah, Gevers Wealth Management is moving to the Jordan Creek Building at 5825 221st Place S.E., Suite 102, Issaquah, on Sept. 1. The new building is just a few blocks from the old location and has free parking. With the new location comes new phone numbers. The office number is 902-4840, the fax number is 902-4841 and the tollfree number exclusive to clients is 855-902-4840. Client meetings scheduled for after Sept. 9 will be at the new location. Gevers Wealth Management provides services for retirement, wealth planning and investment management and design.

Sexual assault resource center to provide services for Eastside Beginning in late September, the Harborview Center for Sexual Assault and Traumatic Stress (HCSATS) will expand its partnership with the King County Sexual Assault Resource Center (KCSARC). Both centers are nationally recognized leaders in sexual assault and trauma services. They provide counseling, advocacy, prevention and education services. “We see this as an opportunity to further solidify the long standing collaborative relationship with KCSARC and to increase the availability of services on the Eastside to include counseling for adults as well as children and families,” said Lucy Berliner, director of HCSATS, in a statement. Eastside families will have access to the same services that the Children’s Response Center has provided for nearly 30 years. HCSATS and KCSARC services will integrate into the Children’s Response Center on the campus of Overlake Medical Center Sept. 30.