Newcastle Days celebrates 20 years

August 29, 2014

The city of Newcastle officially turned 20 this year.

While the area is home to a century’s worth of coal-mining history, it was only in 1994 that the city became the Newcastle it is today. There were 7,000 residents in the city at the time of incorporation, a number that has grown to more than 10,400.

And as with any birthday milestone, it’s time for a celebration, and it comes in the form of the city’s annual Newcastle Days festival Sept. 6.

“Really, when you think about it, 20 years isn’t old for even a tree, but there’s been a huge amount of change here in Newcastle in the last 20 years,” said Community Activities Commission Chairwoman Diane Lewis, one of the festival’s organizers. Read more

Newcastle in line for Lake Boren grant

August 29, 2014

The city of Newcastle is in line to receive a $225,000 King County Flood Control District grant that will help ease flooding at Lake Boren.

The district’s executive committee recommended Aug. 18 that Newcastle receive a portion of $2.6 million in grants available from a newly created program aimed at reducing the impact of local flooding.

“This grant funding will allow the city of Newcastle to address longstanding flooding issues dating back prior to the city’s incorporation,” Reagan Dunn, King County Councilman representing Newcastle and chairman of the King County Flood Control District, said in a news release.

The city of Newcastle’s Lake Boren flooding mitigation project will receive $255,000 to improve the outlet channel by clearing and removing any overflow blockages at Boren Creek. Read more

Chamber to host King County sheriff

August 29, 2014

The Newcastle Chamber of Commerce will host King County Sheriff John Urquhart at its September luncheon.

Urquhart will give an update on all that’s happening at the King County Sheriff’s Office, and answer audience questions. The city of Newcastle contracts with the King County Sheriff’s Office for police services.

The luncheon starts at 11 a.m. Sept. 10 at Tapatio Mexican Grill, 6920 Coal Creek Parkway S.E. The cost is $20 for chamber members and $25 for nonmembers. RSVP for the luncheon at http://newcastle-chamber.org.

Notes from Newcastle: Celebrate 20 years of community

August 29, 2014

In honor of Newcastle’s 20th anniversary, we asked Councilman John Dulcich, a member of the city’s original council, to write this month’s Notes from Newcastle column.

It has been an honor and a privilege to be involved as a leader in Newcastle over the past 20 years.

Dulcich

John D. Dulcich

Although our city officially incorporated in 1994, Newcastle was actually founded in 1869 as a coal-mining town. The coal carried from Newcastle helped spur early development in the region and was instrumental in making the Port of Seattle the dominant West Coast seaport that it is today. Read more

Community spotlight

July 31, 2014

Contributed Steve Kelly, lead singer of the Neil Diamond tribute band Cherry Cherry, performs. The bland plays Aug. 6 at Lake Boren Park.

Contributed
Steve Kelly, lead singer of the Neil Diamond tribute band Cherry Cherry, performs. The band plays Aug. 6 at Lake Boren Park.

The city of Newcastle’s annual Concerts in the Park series continues in August, starting with Cherry Cherry, a Neil Diamond tribute band, on Aug. 6. Read more

Notes from Newcastle: Neighborhood pride and activism

July 31, 2014

I often like to end my interviews with a question about a subject’s hometown.

How long have you lived in Newcastle? Why did you choose to move to Newcastle? What do you like about living in Newcastle?

The answers aren’t necessarily important for the story, but I always enjoy hearing residents talk about the place they live.

Some mention the city’s trails, others the small-neighborhood feel, but all extol the convenience of Newcastle’s location and display a certain pride in the city they call home. Read more

Public works director leaving for North Bend

June 5, 2014

By Christina Corrales-Toy Mark Rigos, outgoing Newcastle Public Works director, with his son Alexander, speaks at the May Creek Trail ribbon-cutting ceremony Sept. 15.

By Christina Corrales-Toy
Mark Rigos, outgoing Newcastle Public Works director, with his son Alexander, speaks at the May Creek Trail ribbon-cutting ceremony Sept. 15.

Newcastle Public Works Director Mark Rigos has only worked with the city for three years, but his impact on the community is so great that when he announced his resignation, at least one resident became emotional at the thought of losing him. Read more

City has big shoes to fill in public works

June 5, 2014

The community will lose an important asset this month, when Public Works Director Mark Rigos leaves for the same position at North Bend.

North Bend’s population is smaller than Newcastle’s, by about 4,000 residents, but it offers greater responsibilities, including managing the city’s water and sewer district.

Rigos was only with Newcastle for three years, but it has certainly felt like much longer than that, given the way he has fully ingratiated himself within the community.

In his time with Newcastle, Rigos redefined what it meant to be a public works director, when he equally prioritized public safety and customer service. Read more

Our hero, our friend

May 15, 2014

NEW — 12:15 p.m. May 15, 2014

By Autumn Koepp Mayor John Dulcich stands with hundreds of mourners as they watch a procession of more than 450 police vehicles drive through Newcastle in honor of fallen Deputy Richard Herzog in 2002.

By Autumn Koepp
Mayor John Dulcich stands with hundreds of mourners as they watch a procession of more than 450 police vehicles drive through Newcastle in honor of fallen Deputy Richard Herzog in 2002.

May 15 is Peace Officers Memorial Day, part of National Police Week, which recognizes the men and women who have fallen in the line of duty. In honor of the day, we went through our archives and found this guest editorial penned by then-Newcastle Mayor John Dulcich in the July 12, 2002 Newcastle News issue. It is reprinted below in recognition of Deputy Rich Herzog’s sacrifice to the Newcastle community. Read more

Neighbors voice concerns about Energize Eastside

May 1, 2014

UPDATED — 9:45 p.m. May 1, 2014

*This story has been updated to reflect the following change: The initial version, and the one seen in the May 2 print edition, stated that Larry Johnson and the Olympus Homeowners Association would get a chance to give their own presentation about Energize Eastside at the May 6 Newcastle City Council. That has now been rescheduled for a later date to be determined*

Upgrades to infrastructure needed

When Newcastle neighbors Larry Johnson and Dave Edmonds peer into the backyards of their Olympus homes, transmission lines and power poles greet them.

It’s not the best view, but residents have learned to live with the 60-foot beams that carry 115 kilovolt power lines. The infrastructure has been there since long before the city was incorporated 20 years ago.

Those poles could get a lot taller, with lines that carry even more power, if Puget Sound Energy upgrades that corridor as part of its Energize Eastside project.

Courtesy Puget Sound Energy At left, a growing Eastside, especially the area west of Lake Sammamish, is putting a strain on the region’s electric system, as seen in this future growth map. Above, PSE’s solution to the region’s growing power demand is to build about 18 miles of 230 kilovolt transmission lines from Redmond to Renton.

Courtesy Puget Sound Energy
At left, a growing Eastside, especially the area west of Lake Sammamish, is putting a strain on the region’s electric system, as seen in this future growth map. Above, PSE’s solution to the region’s growing power demand is to build about 18 miles of 230 kilovolt transmission lines from Redmond to Renton.

Read more

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