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July 24, 2013



Sammamish Landing set for grand-opening party By Neil Pierson

Plenty of people have been enjoying the Sammamish Landing since first-phase construction efforts finished last year, and now the city is planning its first showcase event for the waterfront park. The park, located at 4607 East Lake Sammamish Parkway N.E., will be the site of a city-sponsored beach party from 6-8 p.m. July 26. Hot dogs and ice cream will be available for purchase, and the public is also invited to enjoy live music by Dave Calhoun, a Jimmy Buffett tribute act. The official ribbon-cutting for the park’s opening will be at 6:15 p.m. “This will be a great way to showcase Sammamish Landing,” City Manager Ben Yazici said in a news release. “People are already using it, but this should really get the word out.” Dawn Sanders, the city’s volunteer coordinator, said prizes will be awarded to the people who traveled the farthest by biking, walking or paddling to the

Photo by Neil Pierson

City officials invite residents to paddle up to the public dock at Sammamish Landing Park. park. The park is the only publicaccess point to Lake Sammamish within city limits. Parking is

limited – the closest spots for vehicles are nearly a half-mile away on 187th Avenue N.E. – but people are welcome to use boats

or kayaks to reach the park by water. Visitors can reach the park via the King County-owned

East Lake Sammamish Trail. Additionally, the city will be offering a shuttle service from the Les Schwab tire center, 6651 East Lake Sammamish Parkway N.E. People needing assistance to get to the park can contact the city’s parks and recreation department at 425-295-0585. The journey to open the park stretches back more than a decade. In 2001, Sammamish was gifted a parcel of land that included 1,470 feet of shoreline. But a process to plan and build the park didn’t start until 2008. After nearly two years of planning, which included a public comment process, city council members adopted the park’s master plan in July 2010. Construction began in summer 2011 and finished in spring 2012. The first phase, which cost $650,000, includes a trailhead, two picnic shelters, a portable restroom, and two floating docks, which were designed to adapt to seasonal fluctuations in water levels and allow for year-round usage.

See PARK, Page 7

City looking to foster family-friendly outings in the garden By Neil Pierson

Parents interested in taking their children to a fun, safe and educational activity in the outdoors might consider attending two events in August at the Lower Sammamish Commons’ native plant garden. The city of Sammamish is hosting the free events as a way of bringing children into the outdoors and learning about the wide variety of plants and flowers in their own backyard. The turnout was sparse for a pair of July outings, but Dawn Sanders, the city’s volunteer coordinator, is hoping warm, sunny weather will bring more participants to the park on Aug. 6 and Aug. 20. The volunteer projects run from 10 a.m. to noon. Adults and children are invited to learn the difference between native and invasive plants, and learn proper weeding techniques. “It’s a real win for us – we get more people out here working in the garden,” Sanders said. “I could definitely have more teens, but I’d love to have some families with younger kids. And it’s definitely not a project where a family would feel like they’d have to weed for two hours.” The city has partnered with the Washington Native Plants

Society to tend the garden at the lower commons. Sanders said the groups have salvaged plants like salal and currants from areas undergoing development, then relocated them to the park. “It’s a continually ongoing process,” she explained. “We really need to have a project here once a month at least. … It’s hard in the summer because we’re so busy at the city to do those.” The garden has provided an opportunity for two Eastlake High School students to complete their senior projects. Kaitlin Daniels said she has enjoyed learning about invasive and native species, and she’s planning additional volunteer efforts in that regard for the next school year with the Friends of the Cedar River Watershed. Removing weeds under the hot summer sun last week was tiring, she said, but worthwhile. “I feel like getting to be with nature is just a good thing to do,” Daniels said. Hayley Rowe believes her experience in the garden could benefit her future career path. Following graduation next year, she plans to travel to South Africa for an internship and possibly get a full-time job in a national park or nature reserve. Rowe likes to tend her garden at home, and she also spends

Photo by Neil Pierson

Kaitlin Daniels, who will be a senior at Eastlake High School this fall, pulls weeds from the ground on July 16 at the Lower Sammamish Commons. time on the Illahee Trail. Both have proven to be educational. “It’s interesting to know what

kinds of things you see when you bike around the community,” she said. “There’s a lot of wildflowers

(at the Illahee Trail), and it’s kind See GARDEN, Page 7




July 24, 2013


Pitching guides Lakeside Recovery to another win By Neil Pierson

Its 2013 record is a gaudy one, but don’t be fooled: The Lakeside Recovery Senior American Legion baseball team has had to win several close contests this season. Lakeside Recovery stretched its record to 6-2 in one-run games, defeating Chaffey 2-1 in a non-league outing at Issaquah High School on July 17. But the team’s biggest win of the campaign might have a come a day earlier, when it rallied for a 7-4 triumph in nine innings at Bellingham to capture the Northwest League title. The July 16 win at Bellingham was important because it kept Lakeside Recovery (31-11 overall, 10-2 league) at home for the first round of the Legion playoffs. “If we lost, we had to go to Spokane,” Lakeside head coach Rob Reese said. “So it saved us about 10 hours (in travel time).” Lakeside is looking to repeat its 2012 performance, when it finished third at the American

Legion World Series in Shelby, N.C. The players indicate there aren’t many weaknesses on this year’s roster, and their record in close games bodes well for another long postseason run. “Consistency would probably be the biggest thing,” said Nik Sutherland, who pitched the last three innings and got the save against Chaffey. “We all just know our roles and we keep on coming back, trying to get better, and I think as the year has gone on, we’ve reached a really high level of play.” Lakeside only had five hits against three Chaffey pitchers, but three of them were timely ones that pushed runs across in the third inning. Nate Gibson led off the third with an infield single, then raced all the way home on Bradley Hoss’ double to the left-field gap. “I got behind 0-2, and I just tried to find the barrel of the bat and find some way to get the guy in,” said Hoss, who is entering his senior season at Skyline High School.

“Hoss is one of our four outfielders who play out there, and he’s been hot, real hot the past couple weeks,” Reese added. Lakeside made it 2-0 when catcher Ryan Darrow drilled a sharp single to left field to score Hoss. The two runs were enough for a Lakeside pitching staff that showed off its depth. Reese was looking to rest his arms for the start of the postseason, so four hurlers shared the workload against Chaffey. Jake Rosen started and pitched two scoreless innings. Gibson and Jason Santiago each pitched an inning, and Sutherland, a seniorto-be at Issaquah High, got the See RECOVERY, Page 9 Photo by Neil Pierson

Lakeside Recovery catcher Ryan Darrow snares a pop fly in foul territory during his team’s 2-1 victory over Chaffey in a Senior American Legion baseball game on July 17 at Issaquah High School.

Football camp develops next generation of Wolves By Neil Pierson

elementary and middle-school students, so it was a chance to Don Bartel wants to cultivate a give back to the program that has powerhouse football program at given them a lot of joy. Eastlake High School, and to do Dylan Reifeis, a sophomore that, he’s working with players quarterback, was a regular camp who won’t don the Wolves’ black- participant growing up, and was and-red uniforms for several actually coached at one point more years. by his brother, Austin, a 2010 Judging by the smiling faces Eastlake graduate. of roughly 70 boys at last week’s “I always looked up to these Eastlake True Champions Camp, guys, and so it’s kind of cool the Wolves’ first-year head coach being out here, being one of the is making a positive impression. kids that they look up to,” Reifeis Participation said. at the four-day While the “We get to know those camp tripled main purpose kids. And for me, it’s from last year, of the camp awesome.” and the fields is teaching were filled fundamentals – Don Bartel, with players and growing Coach – entering secpassion for the ond through sport among eighth grades. young children, “What it says is, everybody Bartel also sees a side benefit for knows things are changing at the Eastlake program – churning Eastlake, and their kids are going out leadership. to get a lot out of camp,” Bartel Bartel was an assistant coach said. at January’s Semper Fidelis One of the quickest ways to All-American Bowl in Carson, foster enthusiasm among the Calif. He recalls taking the youngsters, Bartel said, is to have players to a youth camp in them surrounded by their highnearby Long Beach and watching school heroes. All of Eastlake’s Peyton Pelluer, a star at Skyline captains, along with several other High who is now playing for potential leaders, served as camp Washington State, jump into the counselors. middle of the action to help kids Many of the Eastlake playimprove their skills. ers had attended the camp as “It never fails – you can tell

Photo by Neil Pierson

Axel Isackson, 11, knocks the football into the air during a defensive drill on July 17 at the Eastlake True Champions Camp. the confidence of a high-school kids by how he deals with 5-, 6-, 7-year-olds,” Bartel said. “A lot of

those other kids would sit on the periphery … and didn’t do much.” Bartel encouraged his players

to interact with the kids as much See WOLVES, Page 9