MI Weekly

    A weekly update from the City of Mercer Island

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(For event details, visit the City's online calendar or click on a specific event)

Aug 28

Sept 1

Sept 2

Sept 3

Sept 4

Sept 6

Sept 5

Sept 8

Sept 9

Debbie Bertlin

Volunteer Opportunities 

City Hall Address
9611 SE 36th Street
Mercer Island, WA 98040


Monday - Friday
8:30am to 5:00pm

Donations Requested 

The Mercer Island Food Pantry relies on your non-perishable food donations to keep the shelves stocked year-round.
Click for more info.
Aug 28, 2019 | Vol. 14 | No. 35
CougarCougar Update
Click to visit the City's cougar information website
On August 5 and 6, security cameras captured overnight footage of a cougar (aka: mountain lion) near Pioneer Park. Since that time, various other potential sightings have been called in to the M ercer Island Police Department (MIPD), which has investigated each call thoroughly, but has been unable to confirm any other sightings. Visit the City's new cougar webpage to stay up to date on news, sightings, read Q&A, or submit a question.

The MIPD has visited numerous locations across the Island and has consulted the experts from the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) on every call.  In several cases, extensive WDFW field investigations have revealed no cougar tracks or other supporting evidence. 

The MIPD asks that any resident who sees the cougar to immediately call 9-1-1; officers will investigate, and if necessary, will attempt to tree the animal, or use force if the cougar poses an imminent threat to the public.
On Tuesday, September 3, WDFW experts will speak to the City Council about the response to the cougar sightings so far. This Special Study Session will start at 6:45pm, before the normal Council Meeting, in City Hall.  As usual, the City will broadcast the meeting live via the  Council YouTube channel  as well as on  MI-TV Channel 21 . The archived video will also be available for viewing after the meeting.
Finally, t he City is aware of reports of a potential cougar sighting in Olympia, though these are unconfirmed at this time. The City is discussing the situation with WDFW experts, and learning more about the differences in case-by-case tactics.
Updates and news will continue to be posted here on the City's new cougar webpage.
Art_UnCorkedArt UnCorked Returns Sept 6
Click to learn more or buy tickets
The sixth annual Mercer Island Art UnCorked event presents an evening of wine tasting, art, music and food in the heart of downtown Mercer Island, at the Outdoor Sculpture Gallery along Sunset Highway at 78th Avenue SE, on Friday, September 6, from 6:00-9:00pm

Organized once again by the Mercer Island Chamber of Commerce, a portion of the evening's proceeds will benefit Mercer Island Youth and Family Services and MI High School scholarships; the City is a co-sponsor of this popular outdoor event, along with other sponsors Compass Real Estate, Aegis Living Mercer Island, Mary Lee Real Estate, The Mercer Luxury Apartments, MIVAL and more.
This year, 22 Washington vintners, brewers, and cider-makers, some with Mercer Island connections, will be pouring two or more of their products at booths, while local artists will be showing and selling a selection of handmade artwork. Wines poured will also be available for purchase that night only at a small discount; food is available.
Follow along on Facebook or Instagram Learn more and purchase tickets ahead of the event at: www.mercerislandartuncorked.com.
TraumaTown Hall: Trauma in the Community, Sept 10
Click for more information
Come join the City's Youth and Family Services Department (MIYFS) on Tuesday, September 10 (6:30-8:00pm at the Community Center), for an interactive and informative Town Hall event where you can learn about trauma and the impacts it has on our community, on individuals, families, caregivers, friends, and others. 

Attendees will learn about the different types of trauma, how trauma affects the mind and body, and what we can all do about it.  Participants will gain tools to help reduce stress and build capacity to manage challenging experiences. This free event is suitable for teens and older.

This event will be facilitated by Ruth Yeo-Peterman and is funded by a grant received from Washington State Health Care Authority to enhance Trauma-Informed Approaches in the Mercer Island Community. Call 206-275-7611 for more information.
Boards Two Vacant Board and Commission Seats
Click to learn more about Boards and Commissions
Earlier this spring, the City invited residents to apply for positions on several volunteer advisory boards. These  boards and commissions rely on community involvement to help improve the overall livability of Mercer Island. 

Appointments to four  boards and commissions  were made by the Mayor and Deputy Mayor, and affirmed by the City Council, but two positions still remain unfilled.

The first is a four-year term (ending May 31, 2022) on the Open Space Conservancy Trust (OSCT) which was created to oversee open space on Mercer Island.

Te second vacant position ( a four-year term expiring May 31, 2023) is on the Design Commission, for which the  City Council prefers an applicant with landscape architecture, urban planning, or civil engineering experience.

Board members typically spend approximately ten hours a month on various duties.   For more information, or to apply, email or call City Clerk Deb Estrada at (206) 275-7793. Applications are also available online.
Mercer Island Goes Green
Oil_TanksUnderground Oil Heating Tanks
Click to learn more or view larger image
Did you know that many houses built early last century used oil-burning furnaces for heating? These usually required an underground metal tank to store the oil.

Most tanks were installed between 1920 and 1950, and consist of single-ply steel no thicker than a quarter (25 cents); they are weakening due to rust. These days, according to the City of Seattle, about one in four tanks across the region are likely leaking, impacting property, soil, ground water, public health.

Mercer Island
has about 300 homes still using oil heat, but there are much cleaner, cheaper, and more efficient alternatives available today. The best option is an electric heat pump that works by transferring heat from the air into, or out of, the house, and is more than twice as efficient as an oil furnace, saving hundreds of dollar per year in energy costs!  By switching from oil heat, you can also help reduce local air emissions and improve the Island's overall carbon footprint.
Learn more from this City of Seattle program.


For questions and comments on the MI Weekly, contact
Sustainability & Communications Manager Ross Freeman at

ross.freeman@mercergov.org or 206.275.7662.