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School discovers ethnic diversity through food festival

Mission possible ‘Operation Thanksgiving Dinner’ benefits families in need

By Neil Pierson npierson@

By Christina Corrales-Toy The staff at Life Directions Financial is assigning a mission out to the Issaquah community and, should you choose to accept it, families in need will receive a full Thanksgiving dinner. The local financial-planning firm hosts its first ever “Operation Thanksgiving Dinner,” Nov. 22-23, benefitting the Issaquah Food & Clothing Bank.

GET INVOLVED Drop off bags filled with Thanksgiving dinner fixings to support ‘Operation Thanksgiving Dinner.’ 49 a.m. to 6 p.m. Nov. 22 49 a.m. to 1 p.m. Nov. 23 4Life Directions Financial 41375 N.W. Mall St., Suite 3 “We’re just trying to make a difference, and find a way to give back to our community,” said Kristin Hillmann, a Life Directions Financial employee. Community members are asked to donate a bag of groceries containing items the food bank identified as particular needs during the holiday season. Cooking oil; 5-pound bags of sugar, flour and potatoes; canned corn; canned yams or sweet potatoes; canned fruit; and stuffing are specifically requested. For each bag containing as many of those items as possible, and dropped off at the firm’s office over the two-day period, the company will donate a turkey to the food bank. “Many people already donate, so we thought, why not come together and increase the impact of the donation,” Hillmann said. Anyone who drops off groceries will automatically be entered into a drawing for a $250 Costco cash card. Refreshments, including cider and coffee, will also be available during the firms’ drop-off hours. The firm will deliver the groceries and turkeys to the food bank in time for Thanksgiving. “We hope that this event helps to bring the community together to support those in need this holiday season,” Hillmann said.

Wednesday November 20, 2013


Jennifer Wood, Cassi Cox and Sarah Edmonds (from left), Liberty High School choir members, visit backstage just before they perform in front of 2,500 people at the Gaylord Opryland Hotel in Nashville, Tenn.

TOP OF THE POPS Singing Liberty trio performs in honor chorus By Christina Corrales-Toy Nov. 7 was just another regular day of rehearsal for Liberty High School choir students Cassi Cox, Sarah Edmonds and Jennifer Wood. They stood, interspaced among their peers, with their faces buried in the music sheets, singing along as teacher Robin Wood dutifully instructed. Just a week earlier, though, the Liberty trio was in Nashville, Tenn., performing in front of an audience of more than 2,500 people, hand selected to stand among the best singers in the nation. “It was kind of surreal, performing with so many talented singers,” Edmonds said. The girls made the trip because they were named to the National Association for Music Education’s honor chorus. They were among 350 of the nation’s top vocalists to receive the honor. Cox, Edmonds and Wood initially qualified for the opportunity by earning allstate or all-region awards last year. They each earned a spot in the national choir after judges were impressed with their taped audition performances. “It was a lot of screaming happiness,” Wood, a junior, said of the moment she found out she

was selected. The honor is quite the accomplishment. Only one other Liberty High School student has ever been named to the national choir, the girls said. The trio performed Oct. 30 at the famous Gaylord Opryland Hotel, which houses an extravagant indoor garden. When the singers weren’t eating or sleeping, they were kept to a rigorous rehearsal schedule. One day, the girls estimated they practiced for nearly 11 hours. “That was my favorite day because it’s nonstop, just my favorite thing, my favorite thing in the whole world,” Edmonds said. Prominent East Coast conductor Rollo Dilworth led the rehearsals and challenged the vocalists by instructing them to sing some of his original works. “It was really cool getting to work with him on something that he made, because he knew exactly what it was supposed to sound like,” Cox said. “In a new piece of music, it’s a lot of fun to get into the details of the piece.” The girls said they came into rehearsals not knowing what to expect. The 350 students were, after all, given an immense challenge in cultivating a harmony, despite the fact they had never performed together. It was a challenge met with great success, though, the girls said, when they looked around and truly realized they were in a room with some

OPENING THE ARCHIVES The Issaquah History Museums take requests regarding what people would like to see in the Digital Collection. Roughly quarterly, volunteers have a data-entry day and prep a bunch of records for upload. If there is a particular name, place or item you’d like to see more images of on the website, email Erica Maniez at erica. maniez@issaquahhistory. org. If you have a photo or subject you would like to see in this feature, email editor@


1921 Issaquah High School women’s basketball team The Issaquah High School women’s basketball team, founded in 1912, wore restrictive uniforms consisting of bloomers, black stockings and white middy blouses. This uniform did not change until the late 1920s. Pictured from left to right are 1921 team members (front row) Erma Brown, Marie Chevalier and Julia Erickson; and (back row) May Wilkinson, Alix Sween, Pearl Peck, Alene O’Connor and Mildred Thompson.


“It was actually kind of amazing because you don’t think you’re absorbing that much knowledge, because it’s so fun when you’re doing it, but you come out of it knowing so much more.” — Sarah Edmonds Liberty High School vocalist

of the nation’s best high school singers. “Just the first time we all sang together, half knowing the pieces, half not, it was absolutely amazing,” Wood said. When they returned to the Liberty High School choir room, all three said the experience changed them for the better. “It was actually kind of amazing because you don’t think you’re absorbing that much knowledge, because it’s so fun when you’re doing it, but you come out of it knowing so much more,” Edmonds said. Edmonds and Cox are seniors this year, and both agreed the honor was the perfect culmination to their four years at Liberty. All three said they hope to keep music in their life, whether it’s taking a vocal class or joining a chorus in college. “With choir, you feel a part of something,” Edmonds said, “and that’s something you don’t want to give up.”

The families who are part of the Discovery Elementary School community are ethnically diverse. The school with an enrollment of about 630 is comprised of nearly 50 percent minorities, and more than 40 percent of the student body is of Asian heritage. That seemingly made Discovery the perfect place for an ethnic food festival, and there was a huge turnout Nov. 6, when the school hosted its free “Taste of Discovery” event. “Last year, we took a break from it because no one was available to chair the event,” said Becky Callahan, the mother of a Discovery first-grader. “This year, we were like, ‘That’s kind of lame that it didn’t happen last year. We need to bring it back.’” The school’s Parent Teacher Student Association spearheaded the food festival, with Callahan and fellow parent Catherine Campbell doing much of the planning. Callahan said the initial idea was to host “Taste of Discovery” in the spring, but plans changed because “we thought it would be better to have around the holidays, because a lot of people are looking for recipes for parties, that sort of thing.” Campbell, who has a son in kindergarten and a daughter in fourth grade at Discovery, said people were quick to volunteer. More than 15 tables were set up for the event, with

a wide variety of foods like cupcakes, barbecued chicken, seafood pancakes, corn chowder and pumpkin pie dip. “There were definitely a ton of people who wanted to bring a different taste from all the different cultures that are represented in the Sammamish community,” Campbell said. “We were pretty much open to whatever people wanted to bring in,” Callahan added, “but we were trying to emphasize something that is culturally or traditionally a big hit.” More than 100 students and parents filled the school’s gymnasium for the event, and participating went beyond the simple taste test. In one corner of the room, Skyline High School junior Katie Gibian helped youngsters make edible eagles — Discovery’s mascot — using Oreo cookies, marshmallows, shredded coconut and chocolate chips. Campbell’s daughter Sydnee had a huge crowd surrounding her table as she frosted dozens of mini cupcakes that she had See FOOD, Page B3


Elvin Li, a Discovery Elementary School firstgrader, enjoys an apple wedge covered with pumpkin pie dip.


Dee Camp and her daughter Caroline serve up ‘Texas caviar,’ a dish of corn chips and beans, during the Nov. 6 Taste of Discovery event.

EFR seeks families to adopt By Neil Pierson npierson@ As the holiday season draws near, Eastside Fire & Rescue is once again looking to help area families. EFR’s adopt-a-family program has grown each year, with the goal of giving families financial help and inviting them to a firehouse for a holiday dinner. Last year, the program helped 26 families. The Eastside Fire Benevolent Fund seeks to assist residents who are unable to buy gifts for their families during the holidays. Tim Castner, a firefighter with Station 78 in

HOW TO HELP Extreme Pizza, 660 Front St. N., is partnering with the benevolent fund this year. Cash donations can be made at the store anytime in November or December. In addition, Extreme Pizza will donate 20 percent of its net sales Nov. 21 and Dec. 19 to EFR. Renton, helps coordinate both charity efforts. Each year, he contacts churches, schools, food banks and other social assistance entities to find families in

need. “This program is not for just any family in need,” Castner said. “It is for the families who slip through the cracks after Thanksgiving. For one reason or another, they don’t meet a criteria or missed the food bank program or are new to town.” After locating families, Castner said, EFR officials conduct interviews to determine the age of children in the family and their gift wish lists. EFR is then able to create a geographic map of families and match them with corresponding fire See EFR, Page B3




Wednesday November 20, 2013

Federal Way shocks No. 2 Skyline with comeback win, 26-20 By Kaelyn Sayles Seattle Times staff reporter


Mackenna Briggs, Liberty High School junior, wins her preliminary state 3A heat in the 100 butterfly Nov. 15 at the King County Aquatic Center in Federal Way with a time of 56.31 seconds. Although that time would have sufficed for the state championship, she even shaved more than a second off in the finals Nov. 16 in a time of 55.02 seconds.


Skyline takes fourth in state, Liberty’s Mackenna Briggs wins 100 butterfly By Neil Pierson npierson@ After finishing fifth at the 2012 state championships, the Skyline High School girls swimming and diving team didn’t want to go home again without some hardware. Only the top four teams get trophies, and Skyline managed to score 146 points to snatch fourth place at the Class 4A state meet, held Nov. 15-16 at the King County Aquatic Center in Federal Way. The Spartans didn’t win any events, but their consistency throughout most of the meet proved valuable. They earned seven medals, including a runner-up finish from senior diver Erin Taylor. Taylor started diving only last year, but she improved dramatically upon a 17th-place finish at state in 2012. She stood in fourth place after her first eight dives, and then moved up with three quality scores on the second day

of competition. Taylor’s 373.40 points trailed only champion Hailey Kessler, of Auburn, (387.30). “I just love to dive, and I put in the time and effort,” Taylor said of the reasons behind her success. “I’m just glad to be in this group of kids. Everyone here that competes in diving, we’re all friends, and we all love each other.” Skyline wasn’t able to keep up with KingCo Conference rival Newport, which repeated as the 4A champion with 232 points. Wenatchee was second; Gig Harbor was third. And although the Spartans didn’t return to the apex they achieved as three-time state champions from 2009-11, earning a team trophy was a great accomplishment, senior Stephanie Munoz said. Munoz was one of the keys, winning individual medals in the 200-yard freestyle and 100 butterfly, as well as contributing to See SWIMMING,

Don’t call this an upset. Federal Way won’t let you. After No. 6 Federal Way beat two-time defending champion No. 2 Skyline, 26-20, in the first round of the 4A state playoffs Nov. 15, players clad in blue and white jumped around, screaming, “This is not an upset!” The Eagles never showed fear against a team many expected to make a run at the state title again this year. Federal Way had different expectations. The game at Skyline was lights out. Literally. With just over two minutes left in the game, Federal Way was up 2620, and Skyline had the ball on its own 18 after a Federal Way fumble. Then, the lights went out and the field went black. But Federal Way maintained composure,

forcing a turnover with 45 seconds left to seal the shocking victory. Eagles quarterback Keenan Curran finished with 144 yards rushing on 16 carries and two touchdowns. That made up for Skyline’s ability to stop running back Chico McClatcher in the first half, limiting him to 40 yards rushing on 11 carries. Skyline led 14-0 at the half. But Curran helped keep McClatcher’s head in the game, talking to him at halftime, reminding him that they had to stay in the game. McClatcher found some more running room in the second half — or he made more running room — finishing with 254 yards rushing on 24 carries and a touchdown. Federal Way finished with 439 yards total offense — all rushing. Skyline finished with 341 yards total in a balanced offense.

Liberty stuns Columbia River By Christina Corrales-Toy


Erin Taylor, Skyline High School senior, enters the water doing an inward dive during a preliminary round Nov. 15 at the state Page B5 4A swim and dive championships in Federal Way.

Third time’s a charm Issaquah High School soccer players scream and jump for joy as their sophomore keeper Anna Miller stops the last shootout kick by Skyline after two overtimes to give the Eagles the 2-1 (6-5 PK) first-round state 4A soccer tournament victory over the two-time defending champion Spartans Nov. 16 at Gary Moore Stadium. Skyline had won the previous two, regularseason matches against Issaquah. PHOTOS BY GREG FARRAR

Above, Amanda Johnston (right), Skyline High School junior forward, kicks the ball away from Issaquah’s Olivia Witherspoon (left) and Megan Stapley. At left, Jaeden Chew (left), Skyline High School senior keeper, takes in the ball on a penalty kick as Issaquah’s Deval Talley, with Abbie Litka and Erin Schlosser, of Skyline, pursue the play in the second period.

The Columbia River girls soccer team came into the state tournament with a rather impressive résumé. In addition to being the defending state champions, the Chieftains had outscored opponents 83-0. That’s right, no team had scored on Columbia River this year, that is until the team met the Patriots Nov. 13. Not only did Liberty find the net twice against the Chieftains, but the team also pulled off a shocking upset, sending the top-ranked team home in the first round of the state playoffs. The Patriots even did it on Columbia River’s home turf, down in Vancouver. It was a nice bit of revenge, Liberty coach Tami Nguyen said, given that Columbia River defeated the Patriots in last year’s semifinal game. “This win was a chance for this group of seniors to put their stamp on the program, and prove how good they are,” she said. Jacquelyn Anderson and Sami Harrell each scored, while Harrell and Kelley Johnson both had assists. Amy Ellenberg and Katie McGuire combined for the shutout. The victory made for a fun ride home, Nguyen

said, but the Liberty coach stressed to her team that its job was not done. “We have to take one game at a time,” she said. “At this stage, everybody is good. It’s about who’s going to be great on a given day.” Just days later, the Patriots continued their march toward the state championship with a convincing 3-0 win over Bishop Blanchet on Nov. 16. Harrell scored twice, with assists from Ashlann Applegate and Tara Johnson. Anderson scored the third goal with an assist from both Kelley Johnson and Kali Youngdahl. Ellenberg and McGuire again combined for the shutout. The Patriots are now guaranteed to, at the very least, match last year’s fourth-place finish, but Liberty is determined to improve on that mark this year, Nguyen said. “Our preparation is all about us, being confident and sticking to our plan,” she said. They will play in the state semifinals against Seattle Prep at 4 p.m. Nov. 22 at Puyallup’s Sparks Stadium. If the girls win, they will play in the championship game at 2 p.m. Nov. 23. If they lose, they will play for third place at 10 a.m. Nov. 23. Both games are at Sparks Stadium.


Sami Harrell (second from left), Liberty High School junior forward, sees her kick get by Bishop Blanchet’s goalie Nov. 16 for the for the first of her two goals in a 3-0 state 3A soccer tournament first-round win at home.