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Thursday, June 15, 2006 - Page updated at 12:00 AM

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Sherry Grindeland

Bellevue honors community builder

Seattle Times staff columnist

Despite pleas to keep the honor a surprise, Lynn Terpstra's network of friends and associates accidentally spilled the news. Someone congratulated her about five minutes before she received the city of Bellevue's first Community Builder Award Wednesday afternoon at Crossroads Bellevue.

Instead of the city meeting she expected to see, the shopping center's marketing director became the center of attention.

Kevin Henry and Barb Tuininga organized the event in the Market Stage area of the shopping center. Henry oversees Bellevue's parks and community-services diversity programs and Tuininga runs the mini City Hall at Crossroads.

They described Terpstra as the person who says yes to people and yes to bringing events and programs into the mall and neighborhood. In other words, she makes things happen. Claudia Balducci of the Bellevue City Council called Terpstra the community glue.

A few of the things she has instigated at Crossroads:

• Eclectic weekend live music and entertainment

• Early-morning English classes for Latino restaurant staff

• A showcase for PTSA Reflections artwork and essays

• The diverse ethnic-food court

• A weekly farmers market

• A mini City Hall, police station and library

• A beeper party at which people gathered to play their beepers and kazoos.

Terpstra seldom takes credit for the great things that happen at Crossroads, instead pointing to owner Ron Sher as the force behind the neighborhood gathering place.

He returned the favor Wednesday.

"I always feel like a fraud when I get an award for Crossroads," he said. "Lynn is the one doing the community-building. Crossroads reflects Lynn's work."

When she was given the award and the microphone, in typical Terpstra fashion, she said the community-building was a team effort, not a competition. And she admitted she had been surprised.

"I pride myself on knowing what's going on here," she said. "I came to listen to Barb give a speech. I didn't know it would be about me."

Congratulations

Students in the Sammamish High School video production class just received a big honor — an Emmy — from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.

The award was for Best Documentary by a High School.

Sammamish seniors Lindsey Jensen and Nick Thong produced the video called "Remembering Our Heroes." It details Marlene Horton's experiences as a nurse during the Vietnam War. Horton is an instructional assistant at the Bellevue school.

Jerry DePinto, the video production instructor, was also honored for helping create the emotional story.

One last grin

Phil Bevan of Bevan's Jewelers in Bellevue thought this bumper sticker he recently spotted was hilarious.

It read: "What if the Hokey Pokey IS what it's all about?"

Sherry Grindeland: 206-515-5633 or sgrindeland@seattletimes.com

Copyright © 2006 The Seattle Times Company

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