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Mercer Island

MI | THIS WEEK Artist reception

Serving the Mercer Island community since 1947

Wednesday, February 22, 2012 | 75¢

Scuba, scores, calculus, and caring

Blue water portrait

A new MIVAL art show for March, featuring works by Island artist Marianne Bond, begins with a reception between 5:30 and 8 p.m., Friday March 2 at the MIVAL Gallery at Avellino Apartments, 2836 78th Ave. S.E.

Learn about KCLS library eBooks

High school senior project topics run the gamut

Wondering how to get started with KCLS eBooks? Bring your eReader, tablet, phone or just your questions to the Mercer Island Library at 10 a.m. Feb. 25.

By Mary L. Grady

Celebrate song this weekend Two fabulous choices for great music are here this weekend on the Island. First up is The Total Experience Gospel Choir will perform at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 24 at the Mercer Island Presbyterian Church. The performance is free, but donations are accepted. Or come to hear the Northwest musical duo, Reilly and Maloney at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 25 at Youth Theater Northwest. For tickets, ($17) go to or call 1-800-838-3006.

French ‘conversation evening’ is Feb. 28 The Mercer Island Sister City Association is holding a French conversation evening at 7 p.m. on Feb. 28, at the home of Beth Brennen. The evening will be very informal, and intended for anybody who wants to improve his/her French. All levels of French are welcome! For more information, location address and driving directions, contact Beth Brennen 232-7650 or Monica Howell 232-2983.

Republican caucuses meet March 3 at IMS King County Republican Party Caucuses will meet March 3. All Island precincts will meet at Islander Middle School, 8235 S.E. 72nd St. Participants must bring their voter registration card and photo ID. The doors open at 9 a.m. and the pooled caucus begins at 10. For information, email

Molly Goldberg / Contributed Photo

Molly Goldberg, a Mercer Island High School senior, is working on becoming a certified scuba diver for her senior/culminating project. Her project also includes learning underwater photography.

Islander graduate is ‘almost an Idol’ Mercer Island High School grad makes it to ‘Hollywood Week’ on American Idol By Linda Ball

Out of about 80,000 people who wanted to be the next American Idol, 2011 Mercer Island High School graduate Danny Lacker, made it to the Hollywood round in the 11th season of the popular singing competition. Although the top 24 for the season are already known by insiders, it’s a pretty big deal to make it as far as Lacker did considering the thousands that turn out to audition in various cities across the U.S. He auditioned in Portland, Ore. last summer, making three trips with his dad, William Lacker, before being handed his ‘golden ticket’ to Hollywood. Lacker’s father, William said what is seen on television just

going back next year,” his father said. “I think he was just tired, worn out from the whole thing.”

Lacker was a member of the jazz choir at MIHS for three years, excelling at both choir and theater said Tom Cox, the choir scratches the surface. director. Cox said the student was Thousands of hopefuls are awarded the Ella Fitzgerald Vocal eliminated long before the tele- Jazz award at the end of his senior vision audience tunes in. It is year. He was also voted “most chaotic and intense. Lacker said likely to win a Grammy” by his it was nerve wracking. peers. The singer is also a master “Working with the other con- beat boxer, which is a form of testants was so much fun,” he vocal percussion, he added. said. “But they’re all really talHe watched for his former stuented.” dent on the television show. Despite the pressure, Lacker “I saw him for a nanosecond made it through waving his yellow to the all-impor- In 2011, Lacker ticket when he made tant audition it to Hollywood,” before celebrity was named ‘most Cox said. judges Randy likely to win a Cox emphasized Jackson, Jennifer that there are many Lopez and Steven Grammy’ by his layers to go through Tyler. But he did MIHS classmates. before a contestant not move on. gets in front of the Singing “My judges, so his stuFunny Valentine,” for the judges, dent went far. Lacker said he didn’t remain true Lacker’s individual audition to the song. He was tired. before the judges did not air. He is thinking about trying He was hesitant to say much again. more for this story, citing I’m disappointed, but life goes American Idol rules to stay mum on, and there’s always next year,” until the show wraps on air. he said. “We’re trying to talk him into Idol | Page 2

In order to graduate from high school in Washington state, seniors must complete what is termed a culminating project. Students select a topic that they can pursue in depth by applying the skills and knowledge they have gained in high school. Students are encouraged to something they are passionate about. The seniors will present their topics in March. The projects of five students illustrate the range of topics that students chose. Elizabeth N. Starnes is composing a song for trumpet, her musical instrument of choice. For her proposal she wrote:

Projects | Page 3

The Mercer Island High School boys swim team took second at state last weekend. See Sports on page 7 for details.

Page 2 | Wednesday, February 22, 2012


City liability insurance premium for 2012 slightly less than 2011 By Mary L. Grady

The City of Mercer Island has paid the 2012 insurance premium of $686,994 to the Washington Cities Insurance Authority. The amount is two percent less than what the city paid a year earlier. The premium is the single largest payment that the city makes each year to anyone, according to city finance director, Chip Corder. Since 2003, WCIA insur-

ance premiums paid by the city have increased an average of 6 percent a year. The amounts can fluctuate dramatically. In 2010, the city paid $643,597, a 24 percent increase over 2009. In 2004, the premium was 13.8 percent less than in 2003. In 2011, the city paid $1 million to end the lawsuit brought by former city employee, Londi Lindell against the city for wrongful dismissal. The Washington Cities Insurance Authority


Mercer Island

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(206) 232-1215

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(WCIA) is the insurance carrier for the majority of cities in Washington state. They paid the Lindell settlement amount. But according to Lew Leigh at WCIA, a $1 million loss out of 152 cities and a $35 million pool, represents a “tiny little pebble being thrown into a big pond.” Such claims against cities are not unusual, he explained. “It is not that big a deal.” Most of the claims are not similar to the lawsuit brought by Lindell. Most are injuries or property damage, Leigh explained. But they do happen. In the simplest of terms, actuaries at insurance companies compute premiums by assessing the risk for future payouts and the need for reserves to pay them. It is important to note that a claim is counted when it occurs, Leigh added, not when it is paid out. Premiums are calculated on a five year rolling average of claim activity. Larger claims are effectively “aged out” over time. For more information, go to

March 3 5:30pm • Music • Stories • Skits • Puppets


IdoL | FROM 1 In a video interview that filmed at Idol, Lacker said he auditioned because his mom “pushed him into it.” He had been reluctant at first. But, after moving on to the next round, he exclaims, “Oh my God is this really happening? It feels so surreal.” He said that first time he performed in front of a live audience was in a sixth-grade production of “Grease.” Lacker has just returned from Colorado where he and his brother, Michael, a 2010 graduate of MIHS, competed at the Irene Ryan Acting Scholarship competition. He said he made it to the finals of the musical theater scholarship audition, but did not receive a scholarship. It is all part of the business. “It’s the performing arts way of having scouts see you,” William Lacker explained, comparing it to how sports scouts come to observe high school players. “Scouts show up at these things to see what new tal-

All-district choir concert Thursday at Mercer Island High School The 4th annual alldistrict choir concert will

Contributed Photo

Danny Lacker, an Island resident, recently competed on American Idol, making it to Hollywood week. ent is out there.” Back at home, both Lacker and his brother attend Bellevue College. He intends to get an AA degree in theater at Bellevue,

then transfer to get a fouryear degree, also in theater. “Honestly, I’ve been really focusing on working and school since I’ve been back,” he said.

be held Thursday in the Mercer Island High School auditorium starting at 7 p.m. The concert will include performances by all three elementary school choirs, the Islander Middle School

mixed choir, the high school Bel Canto mixed choir and the high school jazz choir. The grand finale will place all singers on stage together to perform two pieces. There will also be a couple small surprises from the jazz choir. The concert is free and open to all who would enjoy a nice evening of nothing but vocal music. A wide variety of musical styles will be presented for all musical tastes.

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School briefs MIHS teacher wins DAR history award Mercer Island High School teacher Karen Sherwood received the outstanding teacher of United States history award from the Cascade chapter of the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution. Sherwood was presented a Circles of Friendship and Service pin, a certificate and a check for $300. Craig Olson, associate principal of MIHS, nominated Sherwood based on the following qualifications: An incisive knowledge of American History and that

Seniors | FROM 1 The purpose of this project has been to explore the process of creating music and songs, as well as for me to dive further into playing music. Stangers said that music and musical performance is what she really wants to do in the future, because “I love creating melodic or energizing sounds on my trumpet,” she wrote. “I thought creating a song on my own would be a fun experience, and I now have new respect for any composer alive.” Leila Mozaffarian set out to help children in Iran through “The Dream Project.” The non-profit helps children in Iran who have been abused, are abandoned or who have drug-addicted parents.

she readily shares with students, a spirit of patriotism and loyal support for our country and constitutional government, the ability to relate history to modern life, high academic standards, with excellence from students required at all times, and her commitment to students. Sherwood’s application has also been forwarded to the state committee for consideration.

“Bee” lover qualifies for nationals Mercer Island High School freshman, Kela Harrington loves “bee” competitions. In 2010, she represented King and Snohomish Counties at

Her goal is to raise $150,000 by the end of June 2012. She writes: “The money raised would help find a shelter to get the children away from the bad environment they currently live in. [It would be a place] where they would get educated, fed, and sheltered by volunteers from a program that already exists in Iran.” She hopes to encourage people to go to the Dream Project website at www. dreamproject2@weebly. com to find out more, and donate. Molly Goldberg set out to earn an advanced certification for scuba diving and to learn underwater photography for her project. “The purpose is for me to be able to explore the world at a whole new level, and learn about my passion for photography in a new per-

the Scripps National Spelling Bee in Washington, D.C. But now because of her age, she is no longer eligible for the Scripps event so she searched for a similar type of competition. She found an ad for the National History Bee and Bowl on the Internet. That was exactly what she was looking for. She then asked her Honors History teacher, Mike Radow, if he would let her sign up and represent the school at the meets, which he happily agreed to do. She competed in the Central Washington Regional History Bowl and Bee, which was held Jan. 28 in Lacy. She originally intended to only participate in the individual Junior Varsity Bee portion of the event.

However, the tournament director needed one more team to even out the slots for the competition so he asked her if she might be interested in trying. She came in third in the individual Bee and second in the team bowl competition. She then began preparing for the Washington State Tournament which was held Feb. 18, at Klahowya Secondary School in Silverdale. There she placed first in the individual Bee (JV) and second in the team Bowl (JV) competition. Her next stop is Washington, D.C. where she will represent Mercer Island High School at the National History Bee and Bowl later this spring. She will be competing as a single person ‘team.’

spective,” she wrote. Her project required her to take a series of tests that measured both her knowledge and physical skills of negotiating underwater. She went on multiple dives with an instructor “who judged me on how well I could navigate, adjust to my surroundings as well as dealing with emergencies underwater.” The underwater photography class was fun, she said, but she quickly learned how difficult it was. “You must stay pretty still while taking the photo, and well as having to deal with the flash, the subject and at the same time, all trying to make the picture come out

clear and interesting to the viewer,” she said. Sam Bender and Dylan Sullivan set out to “find the distance to an object using only an iPhone”. Their method involved devising mathematic formulas to use data gathered from a phone to determine the distance to an object. Bender writes: “We Skype once a week with a Ph.D. candidate in mathematics at the University of Minnesota. [In] our first 10 meetings he taught us calculus. Then we talked about discrete data integration and how to analyze images. [We have] collected data from the phone and analyzed it with a pro-

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Wednesday, February 22, 2012 | Page 3

Contributed Photo

Kela Harrington, foreground, a former champion speller, has now moved to history competitions. She is shown here competing by herself against a three ‘man’ team. gram called MATLAB.” There are challenges, he notes. “Currently we are dealing with problems that arise because of the accuracy and precision of the data,” Bender said. Bender said that he and

Sullivan enjoy working on this project and would be working on it even if it wasn’t our culminating project.” He adds that he is “purposely vague” in this description as to not reveal how the process works in detail.


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PAGE 4 | Wednesday, February 22, 2012

By Reporter Staff

A public hearing concerning a city ordinance to further restrict parking on sections of the Mercer Ways was held at the City Council meeting

on Tuesday after Reporter deadline. A story posted to the Reporter website has the details of the meeting. The second reading of the ordinance and a possible vote on

Patricia Ann O’Neill August 23, 1942 – February 9, 2012

On February 9, 2012, Patricia Ann O’Neill, age 69, passed away at Swedish Hospital in Seattle, WA, surrounded by her two sisters, two long-time friends and her God Daughter, the daughter of a special cousin. Patti was born to Danny and Mizpah (Mickey) O’Neill in Denver, CO. She moved to Havre, MT, her father’s family home, when she was a toddler. Patti graduated from Havre Central High School in 1960 and continued her education at the University of Montana. She completed her degree in sociology in 1964, and after working in the insurance field in San Francisco for a year, returned to the University to earn her teaching degree. Patti was a member of Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority. Her career in teaching spanned 33 years and endeared her to many children and families on Mercer Island. She loved teaching, working in curriculum planning, and collaborating with colleagues. During this time she also earned her Master’s Degree and Principal’s Credentials at Western Washington University in Bellingham. Patti was all about her faith in God. Her priorities in life were God, family, friends, and her students. She was a member of St. Anthony’s Parish in Renton, WA at the time of her death. She often remarked that St. Anthony’s was her favorite church in all her years of active participation in her faith. Patti was a volunteer for St. Anthony’s St. Vincent DePaul Food Bank. Always one to care for others who were less fortunate, this was a wonderful mission for her. She also loved her bible study groups, learning and living the teachings of the Word. Patti was predeceased by her parents and her brothers, Tim and Tracy. She is survived by her sisters: Nancy Huss (Larry), their children Dan Huss and Robie Knox (Scott) and their respective children Ayla and Livia Huss and Audrina Knox; and Sharon DiPasquale (Leroy) and their children Tony DiPasquale, Dominick DiPasquale (Kate) and Mario DiPasquale and Dom and Kate’s son, Nunzio. She is also survived by numerous cousins and her sisters in WW, Debora Boeck, Vicki Foreman, Marcia Fankhauser, and Linda Lynch. Those who knew her loved her strong, humble and gracious character. Her faith and courage carried her through a number of health issues in recent years, including lung cancer and breast cancer. Patti’s wonderful Irish humor was a joy to all. She knew how to celebrate life. Patti always got the last word in on phone conversations with friends and family. Her long phone messages and thoughtful cards for any and all occasions brought laughter and love to all who knew her. Patti approached this last recurrence of cancer with clear eyes and a peaceful heart. No one expected the complications that ended her life, but her family knows that God called her and, obediently, she went home. Her family requests that, in lieu of flowers, memorials be made to the St. Anthony’s St. Vincent DePaul Food Bank at 314 So. 4th St., Renton, WA 98057; or to the Henry G. Kaplan Cancer Research Fund, % Swedish Foundation at 747 Broadway, Seattle, WA 98104; or to the charity of choice. Finally, Patti’s family would like to express their deep appreciation to Dr. Henry Kaplan and his staff, as well as to the wonderful medical professionals at Swedish Hospital, for their loving care. She was loved and she will be deeply missed. Rosary was held at 7:00 PM, Tuesday, February 14, 2012, at Sunset Hills Funeral Home, Bellevue, WA. The funeral Mass was held at 11:00 AM, Wednesday, February 15, 2012, also at St. Anthony’s. Catholic Church, 314 South Fourth Street, Renton, WA. Interment followed at Sunset Hills Memorial Park in Bellevue, WA. 585603

the ordinance is slated for the March 5, meeting. In 2002, the City Council established a program to provide paved shoulders to increase safety for pedestrian and bicyclists along the Mercer Ways. The City Council decided to implement further restrictions on parking because of concerns that cars parked on the new shoulders caused pedestrians and cyclists to move onto the roadway, creating a safety hazard. The ordinance proposes the City will install “No Parking on Pavement Dawn to Dusk” signs along East Mercer Way, West Mercer Way, and portions of North Mercer Way in those places where improved, paved shoulders have been built. The restrictions will prohibit anyone from parking vehicles on the paved shoulders during daylight hours. There will be exceptions for weather and other

Contributed Photo

The 2011 Officers of the Year for the Mercer Island Police Department were named last week. They are from left, Greg Levinson, Ryan Parr, and Michael Vickers. For the complete list of the awards, go to the Reporter website at special circumstances. Several sections along the Mercer Ways are already signed for “No Parking Anytime.” These restrictions are expected to remain in

place. A section near West Mercer Elementary is currently signed for variable restricted hours on school days would change to “No

Islander dies in motorcycle crash

Albert F. Mladenich

May 7, 1924 - February 8, 2012 Al Mladenich, a retired KIRO financial executive, died February 8 in Hillsboro, Oregon. He was born in Cle Elum, WA and was a WWII Army veteran. A CPA, he worked in the lumber industry, for Rainier Beer and KIRO. Al enjoyed sports and playing golf. He was preceded in death by his wife, VerDean and is survived by his daughter Nancy (Stan), two grandsons and five great grandchildren. Funeral services have been held. Memorials to Seattle Lighthouse for the Blind. Remembrances may be shared at 585944

George Ice

George Ice was born in Tulsa, Oklahoma to Lory & Lula Mae Ice in 1929. He was preceded in death by his parents & 7 older brothers & sisters. Survived by Janet wife of 55 years, nieces & nephews. Graduated Bellevue Overlake High School in 1947. Earned BA & MA degrees in music education from CWCE in Ellensburg. Served in the U.S. Army Intelligence from 19521954. Taught vocal and some instrumental music in Wapato, Woodinvillle & Everett. Together George & Janet established and taught the music program at Woodinville School. George spent one year as a predoctorate teacher & student at University of Washington, before moving to the Lake WA. School District from which he retired in 1984. He taught summer teacher workshops at the University of British Colombia & on the east coast. The Ices performed together for the Seattle outdoor park concerts, Green Lake Aqua Theater summer Broadway musicals, Seattle Junior Programs & varied events. The Ices have been members of St. Monica’s Church on Mercer Island since1959. George directed the choir for 13 years. Besides building their dream home & performing music together the Ices loved traveling in their RV’s and cruising. Funeral Mass will be 11 am Friday, February 24, 2012 at St. Monica Catholic Church, 4315 88th Ave SE, Mercer Island. 587056

A Mercer Island resident, driving a motorcycle on Interstate 5, died in a collision early Monday, Feb. 20. According to Washington State Patrol reports, Timothy Wettack, a 23-year-old Mercer Island High School graduate, was driving a Honda motorcycle on I-5 southbound exiting onto


Parking on Pavement.” After notifying the public, enforcement of new parking restrictions would begin May 1. Eastbound I-90 when he struck the barrier on the right side and the left side of the ramp at 3:52 a.m. Monday. He was ejected over the barrier onto the southbound I-5 shoulder. Wettack was transferred to Harborview Medical Center where he died. The State Patrol is investigating the accident, but according to initial reports drugs or alcohol were a factor. Drugs: During a welfare check

at a residence in the 9300 block of Mercerwood Drive, police saw an unresponsive 18-year-old male lying on a couch inside, and entered through an unlocked sliding door at 11:15 p.m. Beer, glass bongs and hashish were in plain view. Unresponsive at first, the subject was roused, arrested, processed and released.

By the numbers The Mercer Island Police Department reported 20 arrests for the month of January and 1,063 total calls for service, including five burglaries, 23 thefts and four cases of assault. There were 18 traffic accidents, one hit-and-run, two DUI arrests, and 263 total citations.

Feb. 9

Feb. 7

Deer struck: A vehicle struck


New ‘Mercer Ways’ parking ordinance

Mercer Island rEporter |

and injured a deer in the 4200 block of Island Crest Way. A police officer put down the deer after wildlife rescue declined to respond. Arrest: Police arrested a 43-year-old Mercer Island man at 8:45 a.m. in the 6600 block of East Mercer Way after the suspect's father confirmed that the suspect was at home, asleep. The suspect was arrested on an outstanding, no-bail felony warrant. He was booked into the King County Jail.


Online poll: Do you like the idea of adding a new stadium and two more professional teams to downtown Seattle? Vote in the latest poll online • 54.55 % said yes. • 45.45 % said no. at Wednesday, February 22, 2012 | PAGE 5

Mercer Island rEporter |

To the editor Hooray for stoplights Many thanks to the City Fathers for the installation of the stoplights at 77th, 78th and 27th. They have eliminated the long lines and long waits! They were long overdue, but much appreciated. Thanks a bunch! Helen I. Stanger

Overcrowding at school critical

Wariness turns to support for bond

Have your say

Island has a serious problem, as our schools are antiquated, and the status quo simply is not a viable option to allow the Island to retain quality public education. I learned that before proposing the April school bond, the MI School Board enlisted the advice from several independent experts, considered almost every possible alternative to new schools (such as renovating the schools and/or obtaining additional portable classrooms), and debated

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process is cost effective and does not waste our money. The bond proposal is a very well-prepared, thoroughly-considered, cost-effective approach to a serious problem on our Island, and I will be voting for it this April.

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when to try to rebuild our schools. After years of analysis, all the evidence came to the same conclusion: that we need to rebuild our schools, and that we need to do so now. And, of particular importance to me, this bond ensures that the rebuilding

Open House



As a parent of two children at West Mercer, with a third entering in the fall, I see every day the overcrowding issues that plague the District. In three years, West Mercer has gone from approximately 620 to 683 students. For a school that was only meant to accommodate 450, this 10 percent increase has brought about many changes; none to the benefit of the children: 1. With no more classroom space, more students mean increased class size. 2. Two 30-minute lunches were changed to three 20-minute lunches due to capacity. My children routinely say they no longer have enough time to finish their lunch. How are children supposed to learn when they are hungry? 3. Two portables have been added, for a total of eight, significantly reducing play space. When the portables first went up, my son was upset because they took over the popular kickball space. 4. More classes are doubling up for P.E. and music, resulting in 50 plus children all in the same space at the same time. 5. Popular PTAsponsored events, such as the Hoe Down, which brings the community together, can no longer be held at the school because the one multi-purpose room cannot accommodate everyone within fire code. These are just a few changes caused by the impact of 65 students on the West Mercer population in three years. This letter does not even address the inherent problems of housing 683 students in a facility that was designed for 450. Nor does

it address the problem of ment and wealth. In the the continued growth of long run, as a property the downtown core. More owner and as a community apartments mean more member, it is to everyone’s children. But where will benefit to vote “yes” for they go? West Mercer has children and for schools. I maxed out on the number urge you to vote “yes” on of portables. So I can only April 17. look at dismay at housing Cindy Goetzmann growth with no corresponding plan to enlarge school facilities to absorb this growth. For all those who write Like most families, we your letters to the editor moved to Mercer Island for against the bond, I ask this. the quality public schools. Go visit the schools. Spend As a fiscal conservative, a day in each of them. See however, I was curious, but for yourselves the issues wary of the school bond that the proposal. children To find out face. more about Or talk the school Send your letters to: edito your bond, I Keep neighrecently it brief, courteous, and sign bors with attended a your name. children meeting of or grandCommittee children for Mercer Island Public in the District. The chilSchools and have conductdren cannot vote; they do ed additional research into not have a voice. So please, the specifics of the bond take a look; educate yourproposal. self on the real conditions Put simply, I’m before you voice objections impressed with the leadon “behalf ” of the chilership behind this bond. dren. The amount of care, prepaBetter schools increase ration, and research that property values. Better has gone into this bond schools invite growth. proposal is immense. As Growth brings employI recently learned, Mercer

We do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin in administration of our educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship programs, and other school-administered

programs. Published in the Mercer Island Reporter on February 22, 2012 and Bellevue Reporter on Feburary 24, 2012. #586299

To place your Legal Notice in the Mercer Island Reporter please call Linda at 253-234-3506 or e-mail legals@

Page 6 | Wednesday, February 22, 2012


Find more open houses on our blog or stop by our office for a free tour map!

Mercer Island Open House Tour! Sunday, Feb. 26th • 1-4 pm spaCIous townHoMe

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erin ewing, 206/236-4554

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Ideally located chalet on .404 acres. 2 bldg lots! $820,000

Spacious remodeled 4 bdrm/3 bth. Master on main, mtn views. New listing. $889,000

Move-in-ready 4 bdrm/2.5 bth rambler in The Lakes. $920,000

peni schwartz, 206/718-7364 pam Boeck, 206/979-1583

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Basketball state tournament updates As the Mercer Island boys basketball team advances to the regional round of the state tournament this weekend, follow along with updates at and on Twitter at MIRsports. Wednesday, February 22, 2012 | PAGE 7

Mercer Island rEporter |

Wrestling 7th at state By Megan Managan

Chad Coleman/Staff Photo

Islanders cheer for their teammates during the 400-yard freestyle relay final at the WIAA 3A swimming and dive state championships at the King County Aquatic Center in Federal Way on Saturday, Feb. 18, 2012.

Islanders boys swimming dethroned at state meet By Megan Managan

The Mercer Island boys swim team was in uncharted waters on Saturday afternoon prior to the 400 freestyle relay. The Islanders, which had won the last six straight state titles, were in second place going into the final event, down by five points. In the last event, Mercer Island finished second to Lakeside, sealing the Lions state title win. The Islanders finished second as a team with 300 points, while Lakeside School finished first with 311 points overall. “This is the first time this team has ever been put in this specific position, to come down to the last couple of events. Given that, they responded really well. This is a lot of pressure for 15, 16, 17 year old boys to be dealing with.

It’s a lot,” said head coach Chauntelle Johnson. The final event of the afternoon was the 400 freestyle race, featuring Dan Simons, Brandt Waesche, Marco Signorelli and Andrew Weiss. The Islanders took second in 3:09.76, while Lakeside finished first in 3:08.61 to win the meet. “I just told them we can’t do any better than our best times,” said Islanders head coach Chauntelle Johnson of her talk with the 400 freestyle relay team before the final event. “If someone beats us and we’ve done the best we’ve ever done, what more can we do? That’s what I got out of those four guys, their best swims. They did really good today.” The meet started as close as it ended. The Islanders 200 medley relay team of Weiss, Noah Deiparine, Quinn Markwith and

Waesche finished two one hundreds of a second behind Lakeside. The Lions earned the first title of the day in 1:36.58, with the Islanders a very close second at 1:36.60. “All you can do is swim you’re fastest and try to get to the wall first,” said Johnson. “I’ve been nervous the entire meet. The score is 0-0 until you come in here so I was nervous the entire meet. I’ve a lot of faith in our guys though. If I can’t believe in them, I know it’s going to be hard for them to believe in themselves, but I do believe in them. There is no doubt in my mind, if these guys could swim again, they would somehow swim just as fast as they were today. This was really all that I could get out of them. They left it all here. I know that.”

Swim | Page 10

The Mercer Island wrestling team finished seventh at the 3A Mat Classic state tournament over the weekend. The Islanders had 59 points, with Enumclaw earning 126 to be the team champions. Senior Blake Johnson capped his career with a state title, winning the 160 weight group. He beat Decatur’s Nick Karis in the championship match 5-3. “He was elated, and so were we,” said head coach Creighton Laughary. “He put in so much work these last four year and most coaches would probably agree that

Tim Knebel/Contributed Photo

Mercer Island’s Blake Johnson works on scoring a takedown on Nick Karis of Decatur during the finals.

MI gymnasts compete at state By Megan Managan

Several members of the Mercer Island gymnastics team traveled to the Tacoma Dome last Friday for the 3A state gymnastics meet. In the all-around competition on Friday Mercer Island’s Kristen Trumble finished 20th overall, with

a 33.525 score. Southridge’s Kiya Bjorge won the individual title with a 38.275 score. Kari Johnson also competed in the all-around, finishing in 33rd with a 32.175. During the individual events, the top 15 gymnasts during Friday’s meet moved on to the finals on Saturday. In the bars competition, Trumble was 23rd, while Johnson tied for 76th place. During the beam competi-

injury ever since. “To come back from that at state and to wrestle the same kid. He was beating him, early one, but the rigors of the two day tournament, he just didn’t have enough knee. It took such courage for him to get that far,” said the coach. Freshman Luke Wilson, finished in fifth place in the 106 weight bracket. He beat Dean Reginio of Timberline 6-5 in their final match. “We were impressed,” said Laughary of Wilson’s debut. “I don’t know the records or anything, but he’s probably the best freshman we’ve had since I’ve been here.” Laughary said Wilson’s only losses in the tournament came during matches against much older students with a lot of experience. Nick Chandler, competing in the 170 bracket, lost his first match to Bainbridge’s Connor Kenyon on Friday, but beat Jacob Evens of Wilson High School, before falling to Lake Washington’s Yaroslav Petrechko by fall after 4:10 minutes. “Both of the matches he lost were to eventual placers,” said Laughary of Chandler’s performance. “We felt like he is a top 10 guy. It’s going to be great to have him back next season.” Brian Rauzi also joined the team as an alternate in the 170 weight class. tion Johnson finished tied for 23rd, with Trumble tying for 19th. Trumble also finished in a tie after the floor competition, in 17th place, with Johnson finishing tied for 58th and Cheyanne Lewis in 63rd. On the vault, the final event of the day, Johnson finished in 25th place, Emily Lightfoot tied for 42nd and Trumble finished tied for 82nd place.


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was the toughest weight class of the tournament.” Johnson is the first title winner under Laughary as a head coach, and the first in the last 10 years. The last individual winner for Mercer Island was Ben Madhavi in 1998. Senior Phil Frazier took second overall in the 182 pound class, falling in the championship match 8-0 to Glacier Peak’s Sean Elledge. “I know it was disappointing to him, but as coaches we were impressed,” said Laughary. He said Frazier, wrestled Elledge early in January, when he dislocated his knee, and battling the

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Page 10 | Wednesday, February 22, 2012


Islander boys head to state

Swim | FROM 7 Boys swimming

By Megan Managan

Chad Coleman/Staff Photo

Islander Quinn Markwith, top, starts the 50-yard freestyle final during the WIAA 3A swimming and dive state championships on Saturday, Feb. 18, 2012.

For the second consecutive year the Mercer Island boys basketball team will move into the regional round of the state tournament, starting Friday. Unlike last year, however, the team will only have to travel to Puyallup for the game, instead of Spokane. “We had fun driving to Spokane, but it will be nice,” said Islanders head coach Gavin Cree about staying closer to home. “Hopefully we won’t get hit by a snowstorm and we can smoothly get to where we need to go. We’re happy to go wherever we’re being sent.” The Mercer Island boys team earned the No. 5 seed out of District 2 on Saturday afternoon, after beating Franklin 63-61. The Islanders were up 17-12 at the end of the first quarter, and remained in the lead 34-26 at halftime. Early on, it was obvious the Islanders weren’t used to playing the style of basketball Franklin was using. “They are a pressure team that plays at a speed that we’re not accustomed to in our league, so it’s a bit of an adjustment,” said Cree. “They were holding, grab-

bing, denying and it’s the playoffs so they are going to let some of that go. I think we just had to get adjusted to that style of game, but I thought we responded by getting the offense going, I was pleased.” After halftime, Franklin closed the gap, but Mercer Island was able to hold a 52-47 lead at the end of three quarters. In the final minutes of the game, the Quakers forced their way to within one point with 1:26 left on the clock. Joe Rasmussen picked up a foul with eight seconds left, giving the Quakers a chance to tie it, but instead Rasmussen was fouled on the missed basket, sending him to the other end of the court. He made just one basket, but it was enough to seal the win for Mercer Island. During the game, Rasmussen hit 22 points, with 17 coming from Sam Cohn. Kaleb Warner had seven, Jeff Lindquist scored six, Sean Hughes added five, Brian Miller had four and Parker Scott had two points. “Sam Cohn deserves a lot of props for his efforts in the last two games, he’s a scorer. He’s a go-to point guard, so everybody’s trying to pres-

sure and deny him, but to go out and have those two efforts within 18 hours of each other playing that many minutes against one of the best pressure defenders in the state,” said Cree. The Islanders will play Kennedy Catholic at Rogers High School in Puyallup on Friday, Feb. 24 at 8 p.m. The winner will move forward to the state tournament at the Tacoma Dome, starting March 1. To make it to the Tacoma Dome, Cree said he hopes the team takes the passion it had in the district tournament forward. “(We have to) play hard, play with passion and inspire each other with your hard play, toughness,” said Cree. We just have to play our game. I thought the focus in the game against O’Dea the other day wasn’t there, we were a little bit more focused on how can we counter their pressure, so today we kind of countered and got them (Franklin) off early with some back door stuff and loosened them up a little bit and then we were able to run our whole playbook. That was nice and I think that’s what we need to continue to do.”

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Saturday, Feb. 18 3A state swim meet Team results – 1. Lakeside 311, 2. Mercer Island 300, 3. Bainbridge 229.5. Individual – 200 medley relay - 2. Mercer Island (Andrew Weiss, Noah Deiparine, Quinn Markwith, Brandt Waesche) 1:39.58; 200 freestyle - 13. Ian Caldwell 1:49.29, 18. Austin Ralph 1:51.91; 200 individual medley - 8. Dan Simons 1:59.52, 14. Samuel Chong 2:02.46, 15. Duncan Koontz 2:03.87; 50 freestyle - 3. Andrew Weiss 21.41, 4. Marco Signorelli 21.52, 6. Quinn Markwith 21.76, 15. Karl MacLane 22.59; Diving - 9. Cody Hall 294.45, 15. Connor Nielson 264.85; 100 butterfly - 8. Dan Simons 53.47, 10. Quinn Markwith 54.45, 12. Michael Bower 54.65; 100 freestyle - 2. Marco Signorelli 46.64, 8. Noah Deiparine 48.77, 10. Brandt Waesche 48.60, 13. Ian Caldwell 49.29; 500 freestyle - 11. Duncan Koontz 4:51.64; 200 freestyle relay - 1. Mercer Island (Noah Deiparine, Karl MacLane, Quinn Markwith, Marco Signorelli) 1:27.35; 100 back stroke - 2. Andrew Weiss 51.35, 7. Ian Piper 53.63; 100 breast stroke - 3. Noah Deiparine 1:01.05, 14. Samuel Chong 1:02.54; 400 freestyle relay - 2. Mercer Island (Dan Simons, Brandt Waesche, Marco Signorelli, Andrew Weiss) 3:09.76.


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Calendar submissions: The Mercer Island Reporter welcomes calendar items for nonprofit groups and community events. Please e-mail your Island event notices to rmar@mi-reporter. com. Items should be submitted by noon on the Thursday the week before publication is desired. Items are included on a space-available basis. Wednesday, February 22, 2012 | PAGE 11

Mercer Island rEporter |

Wednesday | 22 “Combating the Financial Abuse of Seniors” Lecture: 10:30

a.m.-12 p.m., Feb. 22, Stroum Jewish Community Center, 3801 East Mercer Way. Guest speaker: Karen Treiger, J.D., an associate with Thompson and Howle. When are seniors vulnerable and why? What are the warning signs of impairment, and how can you protect yourself from financial exploitation and abuse? Learn legal planning tools and remedies. Refreshments served. Members: $1. Nonmembers: $2.

Thursday | 23

(check or cash at event). This is not a health care provider class. To reserve a space, call (206) 275-7607.

Upcoming Acrylic Scenes & Portraits Painting Demonstration by Pepper Peterson: 12:45-2

An Evening with Reilly & Maloney: 7:30 p.m., Feb. 25,

Youth Theatre Northwest, 8805 S.E. 40th Street. Seattle duo will perform. Through the 1970s and '80s, Ginny Reilly and David Maloney, singers and songwriters, were popular in Seattle. After a 10-year hiatus, they reunited in 2000. Admission: $17, available in advance through Brown Paper Tickets at www. event/225965 or by calling 1-800-838-3006.

Tuesday | 28

Kiwanis Club of Mercer Island Meeting: 12 p.m.,

French Conversation Evening:

Feb. 23, Aljoya, 2430 76th Ave. S.E. Meetings are held on Thursdays. Prospective members and guests are welcome. Notification of guest attendance by noon on Wednesdays is appreciated. (206) 230-0150.

7-9 p.m., Feb. 28. All levels of French are welcome. Contact Beth at 232-7650 or Monica at 232-2983 to learn location and host details.

Friday | 24

Beginning Pilates with a Core Purpose: 10:45-11:30 a.m.,

Total Experience Gospel Choir at MIPC: 7:30 p.m., Feb. 24,

Mercer Island Presbyterian Church, 3605 84th Ave. S.E. Come hear the Seattle-based gospel singing group that is internationally renowned. Free will offerings are accepted.

Saturday | 25 First Aid and Adult CPR with AED Class: 9 a.m.-2 p.m., Feb.

25, Mercer Island Fire Station, 3030 78th Ave. S.E. Cost: $35

Island Community and Event Center, 8236 S.E. 24th Street. The Super Safe Sitters program teaches young people, ages 11 to 15, basic babysitting skills and safety. Learn: basic infant care, how to choose age-appropriate toys and activities, what to find out from your employers, fire prevention and home security, safety strategies for answering the phone or front door, first aid guidelines and what to do in case of choking. Bring a lunch to class. Fee: $40 (resident), $47 (nonresident).

Events | Ongoing Wednesdays and Fridays, Feb. 22-March 30, Mercer Island Community and Event Center, 8236 S.E. 24th Street. This matwork and stretching class is a system of floor exercises designed to introduce beginners to “core” strength while working the body in correct alignment. Bring a water bottle to class. Fee: $156 (resident), $186 (nonresident). Advanced Pilates: 9:45-10:40 a.m., Wednesdays and Fridays, Feb. 22-March 30, Mercer Island Community and Event Center, 8236 S.E. 24th Street.

p.m., March 1, Emmanuel Episcopal Church, 4400 86th Ave. S.E. Free, for all ages. SJCC Purim Carnival: 12-3 p.m., March 4, Stroum Jewish Community Center, 3801 E. Mercer Way. Free admission for the entire community. “Purim Land” for kids 5 and younger, storytime with PJ Library®, music, costume contest and prizes. Purchase tickets for carnival games, inflatable toys, face painting and more. Hamantaschen and lunch for sale. www. Babysitting Class: 9 a.m.-2 p.m., March 10, Mercer

Pilates matwork is a more advanced paced floor exercise class and is suited to those familiar with pilates or yoga. Increase your overall strength, flexibility, coordination and abdominal muscles. Fee: $156 (resident), $186 (nonresident). Performing Arts Weekend Workshops for Teens: 3-5

p.m., Sundays, ongoing through March 18, Stroum Jewish Community Center, 3801 East Mercer Way. For grades 7-12. Register for one or more. Intensive workshop series includes Hip Hop, Sketch Comedy, Acting for

“Can We Break the Chains of Materialism?”: 2 p.m., March

10, Mercer Island Community and Event Center, 8236 S.E. 24th Street. Speaker: John Tyler, Christian Science practitioner and teacher.

the Camera, Stage Makeup, and more. Contact: SJCC Performing Arts Coordinator Natasha Ransom, (206) 2327115, ext. 247, NatashaR@sjcc. org. Yoga-Hatha Style: 10:30-11:45 a.m., Tuesdays; 9-10:15 a.m., Thursdays, ongoing through March 27. This style of Hatha Yoga is a series of poses with variations, always done in the same progressive order to work the entire body. Bring a towel or yoga mat and wear loose, comfortable clothing. Fee: $79 (resident), $94 (nonresident).

The Congregational Church on Mercer Island, United Church of Christ On

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Sponsored by First Church of Christ, Scientist, of Mercer Island. Richard LeMieux at MIUMC: 11 a.m., March 11, Mercer Island United Methodist Church, 7070 SE 24th Street. LeMieux, author of “Breakfast at Sally’s,” will share his journey from affluence to homelessness and recovery. The 11 a.m. service will be followed by lunch in the fellowship hall. The public is invited. (206) 232-3044. MIHS Class of 1992 Reunion:

Register by March 31 for the reunion, Saturday, July 28, The Garage, Seattle. Spouses are invited. Cost: $50 per person, by March 31. No entry will be granted at the door. There will also be a 1992 grad-only event on Friday, July 27, at the Roanoke Inn.

RSVP to MIHS Class of 1962 Reunion:

July 28, Broadmoor Golf & Country Club. Celebrating 50 years. Spouses invited. Cost: $80 per person by May 15. RSVP to Charlie Burdell at (206) 442-1684 or burdell@, or send check to MIHS Reunion, 1425 4th Avenue #300, Seattle, Wash., 98101. MIHS Class of 1972 Reunion:

Aug. 10-11, VFW Hall and Roanoke (MIHS Annex). Come join “A Celebration of the Lives of One of the Finest Graduating Classes to Come Out of Mercer Island High School: The Class Of 1972.” On Facebook: MIHS Class of 72. RSVP to MIHSclassof72@ Contact: Pat Di Julio, (206) 730-6986.

Visit our Web site at

MEETING NOTICE Mercer Island School District Unless otherwise noted, school board meetings are held at 4160 86th Avenue SE, Mercer Island, in the Board Room. Board meetings are held on the 2nd and 4th Thursday of every month. Regular board meetings begin at 7:00 pm.

Regular School Board Meeting Thursday, February 23, 2012 6:00 p.m. Recess to an executive session pursuant to RCW 42.30.110(1)(b) for the purpose of discussing real estate acquisition (closed to the public)

7:00 p.m. Call to order regular meeting of the Board Recognition • Jasper Hugunin – Winner at National STEM Video Game Challenge WORK AND DELIBERATION - Governance Process Partial Monitoring • Ends Monitoring Board Policy 2020 – Indicators for Fundamental 5 & Interpretations of Fundamental 8 – Delivering best instructional practices using reflection to refine and hone teaching and learning skills • Approval of Instructional Materials • Board Policy 1800 – GP-8-E Annual Board Calendar

Agenda items are subject to change. Please verify agenda items by going to MERCER ISLAND SCHOOL BOARD MEMBERS Janet Frohnmayer, President Adair Dingle, Vice-President Pat Braman, Director Brian Emanuels, Director David Myerson, Director Dr. Gary Plano, Superintendent

Page 12 | Wednesday, February 22, 2012





Wednesday, February 22, 2012 | Page 13

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SUNSET HILLS Memorial Park Cemetery Plot for sale. Lincoln Memorial Garden Lot 45 Space 12. This section is filed. Stunning view of Seattle, Bellevue, the Olympics and Mt Rainier. Retail $22,000 will sell for $12,500. Please call Steve 206-235-8374

6 M O U N TA I N V I E W Cemetary plots. Beautiful, maintained grounds located at 2020 Mountain View Drive, Auburn. Lot 1, block 75, section 2. Take Foothills Drive entrance, less then 100 ya r d s o n l e f t . P r i c e d $ 1 9 5 u n d e r va l u e a t $1,700 each! OR All 6 for $9,600 - $295 each under value! 360-2752235. B E AU T I F U L F L O R A L HILLS in Lynnwood. Two person plot for sale in Evergreen Gardens. $1400 (includes transfer fee). (206)755-3742 CEMETERY plots, 3 adjacent, Sunset Hills, Garden of Prayer in Bellevue. $10,000 each, $25,000 for all, or best offer. 360-367-6479. C E M E T E RY P L O T S ; Washington Memor ial Cemetery, near Burien. Two choice side by side cemetery plots. #1 & #2 in Rock of Ages, section 19. Asking $1,000 each. Call: 253-333-5131.


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Page 14

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Organic grapes, blending, skill bring acclaim to Buty wines tigious vineyard sites in Washington state. Due to their careful selection, Buty dodged a major bullet. In the fall of 2010, there was a disastrous freeze. Dormant grape vines can tolerate freezing, but this freeze occurred before dormancy and took the Washington wine industry by surprise. Many wineries, were forced to buy grapes from other areas. “At Buty, the threat of frost has always been part of our considerations when deciding to work with a vineyard. So, in addition to working with fantastic sites with distinctive terroirs, we generally select vineyards in frost-free zones or with sloping aspects that create good air movement,” Buty explained. Buty is one of the many wineries farming organically. Their own 10-acre vineyard, Rockgarden Estate in the Walla Walla Valley, was purchased in 2006

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If you go: The Buty Tasting Room is located in the Walla Wall Regional Airport area at 535 Cessna Avenue. It is open most days

from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and closed on Sundays. It’s best to call head at (509) 527-0901 or email Nina at nina@butywinery. com.

� laces of Worship

MERCER ISLAND New Hope International Church

Women & Children Fine Consignment



Contributed Photo

Nina Buty and Caleb Foster are the owners of Buty Wines.

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and was certified organic in fall of 2010. Phinny Hill Vineyard, in the Horse Heaven Hills, is farmed 100 percent organically and will complete certification this year. Champoux Vineyard, also in the Horse Heaven Hills, is also farmed with an emphasis on the environment. River Rock, another Walla Walla vineyard, is certified salmon safe and sustainable. Buty has been chosen by two of Washington’s best restaurants to produce private labels. Canlis Restaurants chose a specially blended syrah for their Peter Canlis syrah. Herb Farm's private label is called Designee Cabernet Franc, which is that restaurant’s only custom label. In 2011, Buty was awarded Winery of the Year by Wine & Spirits. Caleb was a finalist for “Winemaker of the Year” in Sunset. Buty was #3 in “Top 100 Cellar Selections” in The Wine Enthusiast; #3 in “Top 100 Washington Wines” in the Seattle Times; and #40 in the “Top 100 ‘most desirable’ Wines” in The Wine Enthusiast.



remember when I first go to Whitman College in met Nina Buty and her Walla Walla. She met Caleb husband, Caleb Foster. Foster in Walla Walla. I was recovering from a foot Caleb was then assistant operation when Nina called wine maker for the legendin June of 2001. She want- ary Woodward Canyon ed to bring by some wines Winery. to taste. Now, I In 1998, on a admit that I was On Wine backpacking trip, grumpy. My foot they formulated had kept me up their dream of much of the owning a winnight, but it was a ery, sketching the wonderful sumrough draft on a mer day in our napkin. After two beautiful Pacific years of planning, Northwest. My they sold almost husband scur- Dee Hitch everything they ried to the store owned, includto buy some ing Caleb’s home. snacks. As I vaguely recall, Their debut 2000 vintage it was lox and bagels. featured five wines. We enjoyed Buty Wines Flash forward to 2011. in our backyard that love- Nina and Caleb now have ly sunny afternoon. I was two children. They are proprobably one of the first to ducing highly sought, worldtaste that fledgling winery’s class wines. But as I listened first wines. to them, the overall concept Nina Buty is one of six of blending, teamwork and wine makers and/or win- partnership evolved. Caleb ery owners who grew up on is a skilled blender. He is the Mercer Island. She attended first wine maker in the state Islander Middle School in to purposely blend cabernet 1989 and graduated from sauvignon and syrah, resultMercer Island High School ing in the highly acclaimed in 1993. Her parents, Frank Rediviva of the Stones. But and Carlene Buty, still live paramount for both Nina on Mercer Island. and Caleb is not only their “I grew up enjoying wine own partnership in guiding as part of celebrations with their winery, but also their a family of Italian-American teamwork with growers and heritage. My grandparents customers. made wine from grapes Led by Caleb’s knowledge brought by train from of wine making and Nina’s California,” said Nina. background in geology — As a youngster, Nina her minor at Whitman — fell in love with Eastern Buty has exclusive rights Washington and chose to to some of the more pres-

Wednesday, February 22, 2012 | Page 15

A contemporary, evangelical, charismatic, non-denominational, Spirit-filled church.

Sunday Worship: 10 am English Service We offer children’s Sunday School 9170 SE 64th St., Mercer Island

Phone: (206) 275-1042 Website:


Lutheran Church

SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 26, 2012 7:45am Breakfast in Community Life Center 8:15am Worship Service in Community Life Center 9:15am Congregational Meeting in Community Life Center 10:35am Worship in Sanctuary 5:00pm Worship in Sanctuary


Top of the Hill on Island Crest Way (206) 232-5595 |

6001 Island Crest Way 232-1711

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Deanna Wildermuth, Senior Pastor

* Office Hours: 9AM-6PM Gate Hours: 5AM-11PM

8501 SE 40th – Mercer Island 206.232.3270

Page 16 | Wednesday, February 22, 2012


Mercer Island Reporter, February 22, 2012  

February 22, 2012 edition of the Mercer Island Reporter

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