Northwest NEWS

August 30, 1999


The only difference between a soccer field and a golf course is money and influence

   Hooray! Someone has finally stood up and challenged the Hollywood Hill Association (letter to the editor, August 9). This is an association which pretty much thinks they can speak for the residents of Hollywood Hill contrary to the way the membership votes, and that they have the right to dictate everything that happens in the Sammamish Valley.

   I wasn't going to write this letter until I happened to read this week's Seattle P.I. article about Willows Run Golf Course pumping water from the Sammamish River for irrigation because their application to use well water got stalled with the Department of Ecology.

   A letter was written by the attorney for the developers of the golf course (Mr. Paul Allen and his brother-in-law Mr. Brian Patton) to the DOE stating Willows Run has the right to draw water from the Sammamish River--a salmon-bearing river. This letter was written by Bellevue attorney Marsha Martin, who I believe is the same Marsha Martin who is active in the Hollywood Hill Association (including former or current officers), and is married to Larry Martin, the vice president of real estate for Mr. Allen.

   This is the same Hollywood Hill Association that has gone to court opposing soccer fields in the Valley on both the Kaplan or Mueller property (interestingly enough, the Mueller property is adjacent to Willows Run Golf Course).

   I have to admit that I don't know a lot about soccer, except that it looks like a fun game that a lot of kids like to play and hopefully stay out of trouble while doing it--kind of like golf is for husbands. So maybe I'm missing something, but what is more damaging to salmon--polluting a soccer field or a golf course? They both seem to take about the same amount of fertilizer and water. I see cars parked at the golf course and I see cars parked at the soccer field, so not much difference there.

   Regarding the loss of former agricultural land in the valley, I have come to the conclusion that the only difference between soccer fields and a golf course in the Valley is the amount of influence and money you might need to get it done. It looks like those poor soccer people will never get the job done, since they only cater to a bunch of little kids, while the rich and influential get to park their cars and go play golf.

   Being able to hire Marsha and Larry Martin might not hurt any, either.

Donna DeYoung, Woodinville/Hollywood Hill