Newcastle ranked among best suburbs for millennials

June 4, 2015

Newcastle is one of the area’s best suburbs for millennials, according to a study by

The city comes in at No. 19 on the list that ranks suburbs based on the number of millennials, job opportunities and access to bars, restaurants and affordable housing.

A high ranking indicates that a suburb attracts millennials with an affordable, diverse community and lots of things to do.

Newcastle received high-rankings in the “Access to Coffee Shop” category and the “Easiest Commute Grade,” indicating it’s easy to get around the area.

Kirkland earned the No. 1 spot on the list ranking Seattle-area suburbs. In all, there were 53 cities ranked. View the full list at

Star of Hope Centre fundraiser is July 11

June 4, 2015

Dana Sullivan’s annual dance benefiting the Star of Hope Centre orphanage in Bungoma, Kenya, is July 11.

The Newcastle author and illustrator’s sixth annual fundraiser collects money for the orphanage that inspired his book “Kay Kay’s Alphabet Safari.”

The Star of Hope Centre was originally developed as an orphanage for children who lost their parents through the rise of HIV/AIDs, armed conflict, malaria and other diseases, or have been abandoned by teenage parents unable to care for them.

The facility’s mission has expanded to include a primary school to the local community. It currently serves about 150 children (including those residing in the orphanage). Read more

Community spotlight — Congrats to the classes of 2015

June 4, 2015

By Christina Corrales-Toy A 2014 Hazen High School graduate adjusts her cap at the Highlanders graduation ceremony last year. Both Liberty and Hazen students will receive their diplomas June 12.

By Christina Corrales-Toy
A 2014 Hazen High School graduate adjusts her cap at the Highlanders’ graduation ceremony last year. Both Liberty and Hazen students will receive their diplomas June 12.

As another school year comes to a close, local public high schools are getting set to celebrate the class of 2015 with the annual commencement ceremonies.

Hazen High School will honor its graduates at 9 a.m. June 12 at the ShoWare Center, 625 W. James St., Kent.

Liberty High School will hold its ceremony at 8 p.m. June 12 at Safeco Field, 1250 First Ave. S., Seattle.

Newcastle Community DFCC Conversation questions and answers

June 4, 2015

Newcastle Community Conversation (DFCC) — Question 1 by newcastlenews

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Calendar — June 2015

June 4, 2015


National Trails Day Geocaching Event, 2.5-mile hike with your GPS or mobile device, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. June 6, Lake Boren Park, 13058 S.E. 84th Way,

Newcastle Chamber of Commerce monthly lunch, 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. June 10, Tapatio Mexican Grill, 6920 Coal Creek Parkway S.E., catch up with Newcastle Police Chief Melinda Irvine, $20/members, $25/nonmembers, register at

Cougar Mountain Trail Run, 5K, 8.2- and 14.5-mile runs, 9 a.m. June 13, Sky Country Trailhead, Cougar Mountain Regional Wildland Park, 166th Way S.E., $25 to $45, more info and registration at Read more

Committee approves $518 million bond proposal for Issaquah schools

June 4, 2015

A committee of parents, principals and other educational leaders has approved a plan that would ask Issaquah School District voters for more than a half-billion dollars to build four new schools and modernize several others.

At a May 6 meeting, the district’s bond feasibility and development committee approved a package that would raise $518.5 million in voter-approved funds. The bond measure would likely appear on ballots in spring 2016.

The final item to be added to the proposal is a big one: $120 million for a fourth comprehensive high school. The school would likely be built for a core population of 1,500 – smaller than Skyline and Issaquah high schools, but bigger than Liberty, which finished an expansion and modernization project last year.

Another $148.5 million would go toward building a new middle school and two new elementary schools. That would give the district a total of six middle schools and 17 elementary schools. Read more

Hazelwood Elementary seeks mentors

June 4, 2015

The Hazelwood Elementary School PTSA is partnering with the school to offer a mentorship program next year.

The program is geared toward children who would “benefit from some one-on-one time with an adult,” according to a PTSA email. “These are all children in need of support, guidance, attention and realizing they are special with potential.”

Volunteers must be able to commit 30 minutes a week to their mentee. That time could be spent doing a variety of things, including playing games, doing art or just talking.

“This is an opportunity to reach out, teach, learn and assist our children in positive ways,” the PTSA said. Read more

Hazen brings back marching band

June 4, 2015

Hazen High School will reinstitute its marching band program in the fall thanks to contributions from parents, students, staff and the community.

An anonymous donor pledged a $2,000 matching gift if band students could raise $2,000 by the end of the school year.

Highlander band students, under direction of band and orchestra teacher Chris Coy, met the goal through a breakfast fundraiser at Applebee’s, online donations from parents and the public, and other means.

Coy will use the funds to purchase a sousaphone, marching French horns, marching baritones, uniforms and more. Students will begin practice during the summer and be ready for performances at parades and field shows. Read more

Issaquah Schools Foundation fundraiser lunch tops $617,000

June 4, 2015

Almost 900 community members attended the Issaquah Schools Foundation’s 17th annual Nourish Every Mind Luncheon on May 14 at the Issaquah Community Center and donated $617,000 for local schools.

The program featured several students and educators who spoke passionately about the foundation’s impact on education.

Newcastle resident Ashton Herrild described how the foundation’s Healthy Youth Initiative helped him redefine himself in his recovery from drug addiction and find his calling as a filmmaker. Through the Influence the Choice video contest, a program of the Healthy Youth Initiative’s Drug Free Community Coalition, Ashton has produced several videos aimed at reducing youth substance abuse.

Clark Elementary School educator Shaun Cornwall and fifth-grade students Cole Pak and Ajay Santiago told attendees about Scratch Programming Clubs, introducing elementary students to computer science through a simple, web-based programming language. Read more

Editorial — Celebrate safely this graduation season

June 4, 2015

You did it, grads!

You endured the tests, the homework, the projects, the classes, the early start times and the occasional sleepless night to get to this point — right here, right now, the finish line is in sight.

Liberty and Hazen high school seniors will receive their diplomas at separate ceremonies June 12. Hazen’s is at the Kent ShoWare Center, while Liberty’s is at Safeco Field.

Now is the time to reflect. When you stare in the mirror, dressed in full graduation regalia, what will you remember most? Read more

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