Redmond ranch pairs neglected horses with at-risk youth

  • Written by Briana Gerdeman

Raven Rock Ranch is just a few miles from the suburban communities of Woodinville and Redmond, but it’s a world of peace and tranquility. It’s the perfect setting to rescue horses and help children and adults recover from traumatic events through equine-facilitated psychotherapy.

Sandy Matts, who founded the nonprofit Raven Rock Ranch in Redmond in 2011 with her husband Tim Matts, explained that equine-facilitated psychotherapy uses interaction with horses to teach emotional and relationship skills.


Food trucks now officially allowed in Bothell

  • Written by Briana Gerdeman

Food trucks are now officially allowed to operate in Bothell, thanks to an ordinance the Bothell City Council passed last week.

Dave Boyd, senior planner for the City of Bothell, said the city gets inquiries from vendors who are interested in setting up food trucks in Bothell, so the city wanted to create a way to license them.

Representatives from the UW Bothell/Cascadia Community College and the North Creek Business Park, where food trucks already set up at lunchtime to serve students and office workers, asked the city to formally allow the trucks in the city. Several local business owners worried the food trucks would compete unfairly with brick-and-mortar restaurants, while a few other business owners welcomed food trucks bringing more people to Bothell.


City districts receive formal names before new signs go up

  • Written by Briana Gerdeman

Do you enjoy drinking wine in Woodinville’s Tourist District? Or own a business in one of the Industrial Districts? It’s time for new names, the City Council decided at last week’s meeting, renaming several districts in the city and establishing a program for new wayfinding signs.

The Tourist District became the Hollywood District, the South Industrial District became the West Valley District and the North Industrial District became the Warehouse District.


Medical Examiner seeks public help: Who donated the human skulls?

  • Written by Woodinville Weekly Staff

Three human skulls that were donated to a local thrift store are prompting the King County Medical Examiner’s Office to turn to the public for assistance.

There is no information regarding who donated the three skulls to the Bellevue Goodwill, or how they came to be in his/her possession.

Two of the skulls are adult specimens that were clearly used in a medical clinic or instruction. The third skull is very old and appears to be the fragile remains of a Native American child.

The Native American skull must be repatriated to its tribe of origin, by state law. However, additional details are needed to properly identify the correct tribe or tribes. The Medical Examiner is requesting that the private citizen who donated the skulls provide information, without penalty, about the origin of the child’s skull.

The skulls were donated in June to the Bellevue Goodwill, at 14515 NE 20th St, Bellevue. Employees there realized the skulls were authentic human remains and followed proper procedure by contacting the Medical Examiner’s Office and law enforcement.

The skulls provide a reminder that skeletal remains — even those used for teaching purposes — should always be handled with respect. If you are given or inherit clinical or archaeological remains, you can turn them in without penalty to the Medical Examiner’s Office. If you inadvertently discover human remains, buried or in a public place, you must notify law enforcement.
Anyone with information should contact the King County Medical Examiner’s Office at (206) 731-3232, ext. 1.

Prevent residential burglaries

  • Written by Briana Gerdeman

Of the 21 residential burglaries that have occurred in Woodinville this year, over half didn’t involve forced entry. That means they can be prevented, Police Chief Sydney Jackson said.

“People need to fortify and secure their homes,” she said at last week’s City Council meeting. “Lock up their homes, don’t leave your garage doors open, keep your doors locked, have alarms, and we can do something about the majority of those burglaries right off the bat.”

Burglary means unlawful entry with the intent to commit a crime, and it doesn’t necessarily involve forced entry. Most burglaries in Woodinville occur in single-family homes rather than multi-family homes, and almost half don’t show signs of forced entry.

Jackson also presented a number of other strategies that citizens and police can use to prevent residential burglaries.
“If you’re putting all your valuables in your dresser drawer, in your master bedroom, that’s the first place they’re going to go look. They’re going to look under your mattress, too. They’re going to look for safes in your closet,” Jackson said. “Thieves don’t want to get caught breaking into your house. They’re going to find the easiest way of entry, which oftentimes, as we know, it’s an open door, an open window or an open garage door.”

She also suggested securing your home with pets and alarms, cutting back shrubbery to improve visibility and keeping track of serial numbers so your property can be returned if it’s found.

Police are working to identify crime trends and locations, then “attack it with as many resources as we have,” Jackson said. Police will also keep trying to educate the public through crime prevention classes and workshops, and through resources such as the department’s Facebook page ( For example, police can meet with neighborhood groups to teach them how to set up Blockwatch, Neighborhood Watch or Citizen Walk patrols.
“What we can also do, too, is targeting our known offenders — the folks that we know that come back to Woodinville repeatedly to break into homes, break into cars — find out when they’re getting out of jail and actively watch them and see what their activities are,” Jackson said.

She also cautioned people to call the police if they see strangers knocking on doors — they may be casing houses.
“One observation — Woodinville people are so nice they don’t call the police when they see something suspicious,” Mayor Bernie Talmas commented.

Compared to neighboring cities, the number of residential burglaries per population is relatively high in Woodinville — slightly below Kenmore, on par with Bothell and above Kirkland and Redmond.

Since 2000, the past four years have been a historic low for crime in Woodinville, with 2005 being the year with the most crime incidents.