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On August 21, the moon will block the sun causing a giant shadow in the Northwest. But the day of the much-anticipated total solar eclipse is also the first day of fall semester for Washington State University Cougars.

Jannie Anderson, the author of this essay.
Courtesy of Jannie Anderson

This might come across as whining, but I don't really care.

I deactivated my Facebook account Wednesday after I read that President Trump was kicking all transgender people out of the military. I wanted to step aside and become invisible, but I have something to say, so I came back to write this:

If Northwest fish were stand-up comics, the salmon would be the headliner. And the fish that gets “no respect” would be the lamprey, an eel-like creature that has been plying the Northwest’s rivers for 400 million years. 

Businesswoman Mary Keller Wynn came up with the Natte Latte coffee stand in 1999, which launched the Pacific Northwest's propensity for sexy espresso stands.
Courtesy of Mary Keller Wynn

Are bikini baristas a Pacific Northwest phenomenon?

Jake Koukel from Puyallup asked KUOW’s Local Wonder team to investigate.

Ellie and Emma are toddlers. They spend a lot of time with their dad Tim Billo in Seward Park, a fragment of old-growth forest on the edge of Lake Washington. Billo’s a lecturer at the University of Washington’s College of the Environment.

The grove Billo and his daughters are exploring today used to have sword ferns that had grown taller than Ellie and Emma. But, now, the ground is bare and dusty. There are no plants growing beneath the towering trees.

Jenny Durkan, former U.S. attorney, is running for Seattle mayor this year. Consultant Cathy Allen said she and collegues have been trying to convince her for the last decade to run for office.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

If you see ads in print or online for Jenny Durkan, they may have been paid for by her own campaign — she's the top fundraiser in the race to be Seattle's next mayor.

Or the ads may be sponsored by an independent campaign, “People for Jenny Durkan,” with money from Seattle businesses. 

Outdoor recreation generates more than $3 billion in state and local tax revenue in the Northwest. That’s according to a report out this week from the Outdoor Industry Association.




Delvonn Heckard's legal team: Julie Kays, left, and Lincoln Beauregard.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Earlier this year, a man named Delvonn Heckard filed a lawsuit claiming he was repeatedly raped by Seattle Mayor Ed Murray in the mid-1980s, when he was a teenager.

Heckard later withdrew the suit.

Normally by late June, wasps are a common nuisance at summer barbecues. But this year, entomologists have noticed a drop-off in Washington state and wasp populations are lower than usual.

Beach-goers in Seattle enjoy a Puget Sound shore in Seattle.
AP Photo/Elaine Thompson

While the Trump administration aims to slash funding for environmental protection nationwide and eliminate funding for cleaning up Puget Sound, the Republican-controlled Congress hasn’t seen things the same way.

Apartment buildings in the University District, Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Kara McDermott

One thing all of the candidates running for Seattle City Council Position 8 agree on: The rent is too damn high. But they're divided on what to do about it. 

With an assist from Microsoft, Washington state’s Department of Transportation has launched a feasibility study of bullet train service in Cascadia.

This is the final story in a three-part series on the wildlife refuges of the Klamath Basin and water in the arid West. Read part one and part two.

Foreclosure housing house
Flickr Photo/Taber Andrew Bain (CC BY 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/6WB4v4

Seattle’s real estate market is booming, but contrary to what you might think, foreclosures are still happening. Foreclosures can be disruptive in neighborhoods.

Last year, about 700 people in Seattle lost their homes to banks. The city wants to help them. 


Jenny Durkan is among 21 candidates running for Seattle mayor.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

After their formal interviews, we asked candidates to answer less traditional questions. Scroll down to read their handwritten responses. 

For a decade, a political consultant harangued Jenny Durkan to run for office.  

Mike McGinn, the former Seattle mayor, is running again. 'This city belongs to all of us,' he said.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

After their formal interviews, we asked candidates to answer less traditional questions. Scroll down to read their handwritten responses. 

Mike McGinn, former mayor of Seattle, was known around town for biking everywhere. (His security detail also rode with him.) 

KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

After their formal interviews, we asked candidates to answer less traditional questions. Scroll down to read their handwritten responses.

The first thing we want to say about Nikkita Oliver, of the People's Party of Seattle, is that she announced she would run for mayor before a sex abuse lawsuit was filed against Ed Murray in April.  

Yes, Bob Hasegawa, sitting Washington state senator and candidate for Seattle mayor, vaped for this photo.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

After their formal interviews, we asked candidates to answer less traditional questions. Scroll down to read their handwritten responses. 

Bob Hasegawa, state senator and proud Teamster (former commercial truck driver), is a third generation Seattleite. He grew up on Beacon Hill, still lives there now and bemoans the days when kids played in the street and he walked two blocks to the corner store to buy his dad a pack of cigarettes.

Cary Moon, an urban planner, says we're in a civil rights moment here in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

After their formal interviews, we asked candidates to answer less traditional questions. Scroll down to read their handwritten responses. 

Cary Moon is an urban planner, remembered by city wonks for imagining Highway 99 as a waterfront street (rather than the tunnel it will be).

KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

State and local governments in Washington receive millions in federal police grants. This week, the Justice Department said some of these future grants are contingent on immigration enforcement. It’s the administration’s latest swing at so-called sanctuary cities.

Alaska Airlines is still ironing out operational wrinkles following the acquisition of Virgin America last year. At the same time, its smaller, regional airline is still grappling with a pilot shortage.

Wyden Bill Encourages Outdoor Recreation On Public Lands

Jul 26, 2017

U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden introduced a bill Wednesday that aims to simplify the permitting process for outdoor recreation on public lands.

The Oregon Democrat says getting outdoors often requires obtaining permits, parking passes and camping fees that can be confusing, complicated and time-consuming.

He wants to cut the red tape around access to public lands to encourage outdoor recreation, giving an economic boost to surrounding communities.

File: Magnuson Park movie night, 2015.
Google Maps

If you were hoping to make it to movie night at Magnuson Park in the next few weeks, you're out of luck.

The outdoor movie series has been canceled part way through the season.

Safe injection sites in King County would be stocked with naloxone, a drug used to treat narcotic overdoses in an emergency
Flickr Photo/Jeff Anderson (CC BY 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/QDVuAb

Bellevue could become one of the first places in King County to impose a ban on supervised injection sites for drug users.

Registered nurse Sammy Mullally holds a tray of supplies to be used by a drug addict at the Insite safe injection clinic in Vancouver, B.C., on Wednesday May 11, 2011.
AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Darryl Dyck

Plans to open safe consumption sites for drug users in King County may soon be subject to a public vote. 

Opponents say they've collected nearly 70,000 signatures, more than enough to get an initiative banning such sites on the ballot.

Next week, the Portland City Council is set to choose a plan for a new drinking water treatment facility.

The Portland Water Bureau has to pick one of two technologies — filtration or ultraviolet light treatment — to kill a small parasite, cryptosporidium, in the Bull Run reservoirs that provide drinking water to the city and its suburbs.

But on Tuesday, a key watchdog group that monitors spending at the Portland Water Bureau said it will ask the City Council to slow its decision.

Washington’s state Department of Health will remove a billboard deemed offensive after public backlash. The billboard in question was an initiative from the Department’s Marijuana Prevention & Education Program.

In this March 12, 2015, file photo, Seattle police officer Debra Pelich, right, wears a video camera on her eyeglasses as she talks with Alex Legesse before a small community gathering in Seattle.
AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File

Seattle's police union leaders have filed a complaint against Mayor Ed Murray's body camera mandate. Murray issued an executive order this month to require all officers to wear body cameras while on duty.

Democratic U.S. Rep. Pramila Jayapal of Seattle raised strong objections Tuesday at a Congressional hearing in Washington, D.C., about e-commerce taxation.

Bowden Fire In Southeast Oregon Swells To 22,000 Acres

Jul 25, 2017

A 22,000-acre wildfire is burning in southeastern Oregon’s Vale district near Highway 95. The fire started Monday after lightning struck grassland in the fire-prone area.

The Bowden Fire is growing within the burn scar of the 2012 Long Draw fire and is 0 percent contained, as of Tuesday afternoon.

Officials have warned of lightning season for weeks and fear squeezed resources could prove a problem if human-caused fires pick up as well.

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