Daily news blog for Seattle's Wallingford neighborhood

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Trick-or-treating in Wallingford

October 26th, 2012 by Kate Bergman

Halloween is just days away, and Wallingford businesses are gearing up for a big night of handing out candy on Oct. 31. Wallingford is ranked as the third best neighborhood for trick-or-treating in the city, and Judy Ayers from the Wallingford Chamber of Commerce board tells us they aim to take back the #1 spot.

Ayers says, “Each year Wallingford Center has opened its doors to the neighborhood for trick-or-treating. This year, the Wallingford Chamber is organizing the 45th Street business corridor, from Stone Way to I-5. 65 businesses (and counting) are inviting trick or treaters to stop by.” Businesses will be handing out candy from 4 to 7 p.m. on Wednesday, and will have orange “Trick-or-Treats Here” signs.

The beginning of Wallingford Center’s 6th annual fall food drive starts on Oct. 31, and benefits the Family Work’s food bank. The drive lasts through Nov. 18, and donation bins will be located inside the east entrance of the Wallingford Center.

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Mayor to hold Town Hall on Saturday in Wallingford

October 8th, 2012 by Kate Bergman

This Saturday, Oct. 13, Mayor Mike McGinn will hold a Town Hall meeting at the Good Shepherd Center from 11 a.m. to noon. The meeting is part of the Engage Seattle initiative, “in order to ensure that as many people as possible who live, work or play in Seattle are able to voice their concerns and offer their feedback directly to the mayor,” according to the event information. The mayor will also visit some Wallingford businesses and community organizations before the meeting, from about 10 to 11 a.m.

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Zoo breaks ground on new tiger and sloth bear exhibit

September 20th, 2012 by Kate Bergman

From our sister site, PhinneyWood.

Woodland Park Zoo yesterday broke ground on its new, $19.6 million dollar tiger and sloth bear exhibit.

Photo by Ryan Hawk, Woodland Park Zoo.

The 2-acre multispecies complex will open in two phases: phase one will feature Asian small-clawed otters and a kids’ nature play area opening in May 2013, and phase two will showcase endangered Malayan tigers and sloth bears.

The complex will use sustainable design to provide tigers, sloth bears, Asian small-clawed otters and other species representing the biodiversity of tropical Asia with a naturalistic, enriching environment that evokes lush forests and encourages natural behaviors. Tigers will stalk “prey” as they chase a lure line, jostle trees to retrieve snacks, nap under the roots of a tropical tree, splash in a shallow pool and care for cubs in a spacious exhibit built to accommodate multiple generations.

To bring the behind-the-scenes care of these animals into the forefront for zoo visitors, the exhibit design includes specialized training stations where keepers will interact one-on-one with tigers and sloth bears. These training presentations will get visitors closer to live predators than at any other exhibit at the zoo, and provide insight into how the zoo safely cares for such large and dangerous animals.

An immersive play area for children will allow young explorers to learn about the forest through joyful, full-bodied nature play—balancing on logs, crossing a wobble bridge, flying along a mini-zipline—all safely designed to stimulate mental and motor skill development while setting the scene of a tropical field conservation site where boundaries between humans and wildlife collide.

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Seattle Tilth’s 25th annual Harvest Fair is this Saturday

September 6th, 2012 by Kate Bergman

This Saturday, September 8, Seattle Tilth will hold its 25th annual Harvest Fair at Meridian Park (4649 Sunnyside Ave N). The fair will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and will feature everything from cider pressing to cheese making.

From Seattle Tilth:

The Harvest Fair is a lively event with workshops, demonstrations, family activities and tasty food. See urban goats and chickens, talk to beekeepers and cheese makers, swap seeds and barter home made goods! Local organic farm stands will be abundant and overflowing with fresh produce at the height of harvest season. Stock-up on native and edible plants, local books, garden supplies, farm crafts and sustainable goods.

Workshops and demos include yoga for gardeners, fermenting foods, natural dyes, seed saving, making mozzarella cheese, edible mushrooms and cooking demonstrations. Food donations are being collected for the food bank at the BEET Hunger booth.

Activities include:

  • Raffle to win a chicken coop, beekeeping starter kit or year’s supply of Organic Valley milk
  • Seed swap
  • Cider pressing
  • Urban livestock area
  • DIY herb crowns
  • Barter hosted by Backyard Barter (11 a.m.-1 p.m.)
  • Kids crafts in the children’s garden
  • Organic farmer’s market
  • Sustainable vendors
  • Kids’ parade
  • Live music from Slap and TickleMostly Water, Creepin’ Critters, Holy Crows, Bucharest Drinking Team and Nyamuziwa Marimba

To learn more about the event, click here.

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‘Shell-Out for Hunger’ at Ivar’s starting next week

August 29th, 2012 by Kate Bergman

Next week, Ivar’s (401 Northeast Northlake Way) is starting a food drive to benefit local non-profit Northwest Harvest. The drive, called “Shell-Out for Hunger,” will start September 5 and go through October 5.

Ivar’s is asking people to drop off non-perishable food at any Ivar’s location, and as a thank-you, will give a free cup of clam chowder per person for donations of five or more items. And, Ivar’s will donate a cup of chowder to Northwest Harvest to match every food item collected.

Deborah Squires from Northwest Harvest says summer and early fall are high-need times, and says they have a void to fill. “One in five people in our state struggles with hunger,” Squires said in a press release.

Ivar’s is also taking monetary donations, and have set up a text-to-donate option. To donate this way, test “SHELLOUT” to 80888 for a one-time donation of $10.

To learn more about the food drive, click here.

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Zoo Doo at the Woodland Park Zoo

August 20th, 2012 by Kate Bergman

From our sister site, PhinneyWood.

It’s that time of year again, when Woodland Park Zoo sells off some of its prized animal poop that has been cooking into a nice, rich compost.

Photo  by Ryan Hawk, Woodland Park Zoo.

The annual Fall Fecal Fest begins on Wednesday. Enter online for a chance to purchase Zoo Doo and Bedspread. Only one entry per person is eligible for each drawing.

Composed of species feces contributed by the zoo’s non-primate herbivores such as elephants, hippos, giraffes and more. Zoo Doo is perfect to grow your veggies and annuals.

Bedspread, the zoo’s premium composted mulch, is a combination of Zoo Doo, sawdust, and large amounts of wood chips. Bedspread is used to cushion perennial beds and woody landscapes including rose beds, shrubs and pathways.

If you don’t enter online, you can send in a postcard. Separate postcards are required for Zoo Doo and Bedspread drawings (and only one postcard entry for each). Send postcards with your name, phone number, whether you want Zoo Doo or Bedspread, how much you want, and whether you want to pick-up on a weekday or weekend, to: Dr. Doo, Woodland Park Zoo, 601 N. 59th St., Seattle, WA 98103.

Entries will be accepted from Aug. 22 through Sept. 7. Pick-up dates are from Sept. 22 through Oct. 8.

Prices for both kinds are: Pick-up truck 8×4 bed - $60; 6×4 bed - $45; 6×3 bed – $35. (Limit one full truck per person.) Garbage cans are $8-$10 depending on size; bags are $4-$6 depending on size. Two-gallon and pint-sized buckets are available anytime at the ZooStore for $12.95 and $4.95, respectively.

For more information, call the Poop Line at 206-625-POOP or check out the website.

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‘Grow-a-row’ of veggies for your local food bank

August 9th, 2012 by Kate Bergman

Want to grow veggies and help out the Food Bank? Local non-profit Solid Ground has a program called Lettuce Link, in which Seattle P-patches, backyard gardeners, and community farmers are sharing their vegetables with food bank clients and families. They’re asking, “any and all gardeners to grow an extra row of veggies for their local food bank – any little bit of produce makes a big difference.”

From Lettuce Link:

Food banks across Seattle have a continual need for fresh, nutritious produce, so what better way to cull your garden of those delicious but over-producing squash, greens, beans, and tomatoes than to share them with families who need it most?

And if your garden is not yet overflowing with excess veggies, consider growing an extra row for your local food bank as you plant your fall crops! It can be as small as a row of greens, or as big as a backyard committed entirely to giving (à la the Seattle Seedling). Big or small, every donation is appreciated!

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New food truck to serve New Zealand-style pies

August 7th, 2012 by Kate Bergman

By Almeera Anwar

Many people in Wallingford are familiar with the local food trucks that serve cuisine from across the world, and soon 314Pie will be added to that list. They’ll be cooking up New Zealand and Australian style pies, many in traditional savory flavors such as steak and onion, lamb and mushroom and even some green curried vegetables.

The idea to serve up these authentic pies to local Seattle residents came out of years of traveling to Antarctica, according to Deke Kotrla, one of 314Pie’s founders. He was working in IT and traveled there for business, always having layovers in New Zealand where he would look forward to consuming these savory pies any chance he could.

“They’d be equivalent to the hot dogs you get in gas stations here in America, they’re just everywhere!” Said Kotrla, “But they are always so much more delicious than the hot dogs you get at gas stations here. They’re also popular in bakeries and we are modeling ours off the more traditional New Zealand bakery ones.”

Casey Cooper, Kotrla’s old friend and future business partner, had studied culinary arts and was working in bakeries around Seattle, such as Julia’s Bakery and the Tom Douglas Bakery, while Kotrla was in Antarctica. But Cooper had wanted to start a bakery of his own and was in the middle of looking for a location when Kotrla reached out. Cooper quickly convinced Kotrla that they could merge their passions into one concept. After they realized that finding a location would be difficult given the real estate market, they decided to be even more entrepreneurial and start a food truck.

So far the two have seen a lot of success and have enjoyed compiling new recipes along the way. As Kotrla says, “I love that you can take any recipe for a classic stew, thicken it up and put it in a pie. You can put basically anything that tastes good with a bowl and a spoon and know it will taste even better in a pie shell.”

To help the launch they started a Kickstarter and have raised $9,187 of their $10,000 goal through donations from 236 backers, as of Tuesday afternoon. The money from this Kickstarter campaign will help them to finish the food truck itself, such as giving it a new coat of paint and special ordering propane tanks from England.

Photo by Deke Kotrla

They have now been planning for about six months and are just waiting for the last of the fix-ups to the truck and for the final paperwork for the licensing process before they can officially begin selling. They hope to start in Wallingford and eventually branch into other locations around Seattle neighborhoods.

Kotrla says it’s been interesting to introduce Americans to the classic New Zealand meat pies, noting that many people in the U.S. grew up with chicken pot pies that were taken out of the freezer and popped into a microwave or oven, but that was pretty much it.

“We’re not unfamiliar with the idea of pies, but usually when people hear the word ‘pie’ they expect an apple pie or a fruit pie and we’re hoping people don’t come up to the truck and expect that.”

Kotrla expects the food truck and pies to be a successful here in Seattle based on the warmth and comfort they offer. He notes that food trucks are popular in the summer but tend to go into hibernation for the winter since people don’t venture outside as much. However, since these pies are hearty and warm, he hopes they’ll be worth the trek outside.

“It may take a while for people to get used to it since it’s new, but I know that once people try them they are going to love them,” says Kotrla, “It’s just a matter of getting them to take that first bite.”

Photos above: first of Casey Cooper, taken by Joshua Meisels. Second of Deke Kotrla, taken by Casey Cooper

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Upcoming summer camps at Seattle Tilth still open

July 26th, 2012 by Kate Bergman

Even though we’re in the middle of the summer, Wallingford-based Seattle Tilth still has some open spots for kids’ summer camps. The camps are offered at the Good Shepherd Center (4649 Sunnyside Avenue North) in Wallingford. Here are a few classes that are still open:

Slimy Creatures: ages 3-5

  • Mon. & Tues., August 6 & 7; 10 a.m.-noon
  • Explore the world of slugs, snails, worms and other slippery critters. Learn their role in the garden. Go on a slug hunt, charm snails from their shells and hold live, wiggly worms! Slimy!

Bug School: ages 3-5

  • Thurs. & Fri., August 9 & 10; 10 a.m.-noon
  • Insects are our friends. Dive into a fantastic exploration of garden insects. Learn anatomy, build bug houses, and discover how to invite beneficial insects to your own garden.

Fantastic Flowers: ages 3-5

  • Mon. & Tues., August 27 & 28; 10 a.m.-noon
  • Flowers are fantastic! They provide beauty and attract many beneficial insects to our gardens. Taste edible flowers, find a garden rainbow and make an outrageous bouquet. Plant flower seeds to grow in your own garden.

Plant Planet: ages 6-10

  • Mon.-Fri., July 30-Aug. 3; 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
  • Now is the perfect time to plant your fall and winter garden. Set up a plant nursery, plant seed flats and take seeds home to grow. Create your own seed catalog and garden journal.

Junior Counselor Program: ages 10-14

If your teen or preteen loves gardening and working with younger students, this is for them! Junior Counselors help set-up and clean-up garden activities, assist Children’s Garden staff, lead small group activities and learn more about organic gardening. Week-long placements offer all the fun of summer camp with the opportunity to develop leadership skills.

Jr. Counselors come 30 minutes before campers arrive and stay 30 minutes after campers depart to help set-up and clean-up (these setup/cleanup times are built into the listings below). Leadership training and orientation provided. Jr. Counselors will be entering grades 5-9 in fall 2012 (or equivalent). Mon.-Fri., August 20–24; 8:30 a.m.–1:30 p.m.

For a full list of classes still available, visit Seattle Tilth’s summer camp page.

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Parkour Summit at Gas Works this weekend

July 18th, 2012 by Kate Bergman

On Saturday, July 21, Seattle’s Parkour Visions will host an invitational obstacle course at Gas Works Park. The course will feature some top parkour athletes from the U.S. and Canada, including some who were featured on TV shows American Ninja Warrior and Jump City: Seattle, according to Parkour Visions. The event is part of the three-day Seattle Parkour Summit.

Footage from last year’s summit in Seattle

The competition is from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., followed by a hands-on parkour class for beginners, intermediates, and advanced parkour athletes from 3 to 5:30 p.m. There will be an open training session following the class, and a barbecue at 8 p.m.

According to Parkour Visions, “parkour is the art of overcoming obstacles effectively and swiftly using only our bodies. Fundamentals include running, jumping, crawling, and climbing, in order to pass over, under, around and through obstacles in the everyday world.”

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Take an urban farm tour this weekend

July 11th, 2012 by Kate Bergman

On Saturday, July 14, Seattle Tilth is hosting a chicken coop and urban farm tour, with several stops in Wallingford and surrounding neighborhoods. The tour includes 50 families in total who will showcase their coops and/or farms, allowing participants to get up close and personal with chickens, ducks, quail, geese, rabbits mini dairy goats, honey bees, a pig, and even cows and horses (in farms just outside the city).

From Seattle Tilth:

The sites are diverse. Many incorporate salvaged materials and inspiring display of resourcefulness. Coops range from minimalist to elaborate and are designed by both amateurs and professional coop builders. Come see a commercial veggie farm in the city, a New Orleans style row house coop, Seattle 4-H club headquarters with bunnies and chickens, a container garden in an office building, an urban farm school for preschoolers with chickens and a pig, solar-powered automatic doors, converted dog kennels, outdoor hydroponics and an urban farm bed and breakfast.

The tour is from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and tickets ($12 for adults, $5 for kids) can be bought online or in Wallingford at the Seattle Tilth office at the Good Shepherd Center (4649 Sunnyside Ave N Ste 100). You can see the photo preview on Seattle Tilth’s Facebook page.

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Scenes from the Wallingford Family Festival

July 8th, 2012 by Kate Bergman

The sun made a stunning appearance this weekend, which was perfect for Saturday’s annual Wallingford Family Festival and Parade.

Here are some photos from the event:

Photos by Almeera Anwar

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Hot Tub Boats hit it big on Seattle waters

July 3rd, 2012 by Kate Bergman

By Almeera Anwar

It’s been called one of the most luxurious things imaginable and many who have tried it would agree. It’s a hot tub inside of a boat, and we can thank two local Seattleites for coining the idea.

Photo courtesy Kelly Norton & Adam Karpenske

Adam Karpenske and Kelly Norton joke that their business was born out of necessity and for an escape from wet Seattle winters. Karpenske fathered the idea for Hot Tub Boats when he wanted to put a hot tub on his boat, but did not have enough room to install it, so he approached Norton and the company blossomed from there.

Norton, co-founder of the company, said that everything happened incredibly quickly from there. They started building their first boat in November, which is already available for rental, and there are many more boats on the way. The company is located on the water just off of Westlake Ave North in Wallingford.

For a company that is operating as a very young start-up, they’re getting a lot of attention. They’ve been featured on CNN and Headline News, with much more coverage to come.

“It’s a little overwhelming and hard to grasp,” said Norton, “We’re so busy that we are just focused on the project and it’s hard to see how much attention we’re actually getting.” Just this past week, they offered a boat up for auction to be used on Lake Union for the 4th of July. A portion of the proceeds will go to the Center for Wooden Boats.

“It was such a new thing, this was really about testing it out,” said Norton. “We had no idea what the interest would be or what people would be willing to pay.” The boat ended up going for just over the hourly rental rate. Rentals start at $139 for two hour trips on weekdays, Monday to Thursday, and go down based on the amount of time that the boat is rented; for example, it’s $119 for 4 hours. Weekends, Friday and Saturday, is the same system but $20 more per session. Overnight rentals are also available for people who have a place to tie the boat up. The boat can accommodate six people while underway and eight when docked.

Their patent is pending, but this company is moving forward at full force. Right now they are aiming to get a strong rental fleet onto Lake Union and then expand rentals to other parts of the country. They also would like to try selling the boats abroad and have even launched an online store that sells Hot Tub Boat memorabilia.

Norton adds that even though everything is happening quickly, they are loving the journey and enthusiasm behind their idea.

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EveryBlock hosts block party contest for Seattle Night Out

July 2nd, 2012 by Kate Bergman

Seattle Night Out is one of the best summer nights in Seattle, where neighborhood blocks throw parties all over the city on the first Tuesday in August. This year, it falls on August 7, and EveryBlock Seattle is running a contest for one lucky block to get their party catered by Skillet for up to 100 people.

Photo from last year’s Seattle Night Out in Ballard

To enter your block in the running for the contest, sign up at EveryBlock and say why you love your block and why it should win the grand prize. Three runners-up will be eligible to have the EveryBlock ice cream truck visit their block party. They’ll also give out five copies of the Skillet cookbook in a random drawing.

To take part in Seattle Night Out, register your block at the official Night Out website.

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New bus lane on Aurora Avenue North

June 26th, 2012 by Kate Bergman

The southbound curb lane of Aurora Avenue North has been converted into a bus and right-turn-only lane, also known as a “BAT” lane (Business Access and Transit). According to the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT), the lane will start south of the Dexter Avenue off-ramp and continue south to Mercer Street. Crews worked on striping over the weekend, and the lane is now in service.

SDOT says King County Metro Transit will be starting RapidRide E Line service on Aurora Avenue North in 2013, but asked the City to install the lane earlier to keep buses moving during several ongoing construction projects. The Aurora corridor serves around 30,000 passengers everyday, and SDOT says using the southbound BAT lane will allow Metro to, “establish the travel pattern for both current and future service on Aurora, instead of changing it repeatedly to work around construction projects.”

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