A news blog for Seattle's Phinney Ridge and Greenwood neighborhoods


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News roundup: Story times, fundraising, sewer systems, homework help, membership campaign, trick-or-treating date set

September 17th, 2014 by Doree

This and that from around the neighborhood:

Seattle Public Utilities will hold another community meeting on proposed improvements to the sewer and drainage systems in Broadview. The meeting is from 6:30-8:30 next Tuesday, Sept. 23, at Luther Memorial Church, 13047 Greenwood Ave. N. For more information, check the project website, call the Broadview Project message line at 206-409-3651, or email SPU_BroadviewProjects@seattle.gov.

Group-signs-resizedGreenwood’s Domino Beauty Boutique raised $8,354 for The Pink Boat Regatta, which benefits The Breast Cancer Research Foundation, through their Pink Zumba and Pink Boat Pub Crawl. Domino took second place for overall funds raised in the Regatta, and placed first in their division at the Sept. 7 sailboat race at Shilshole. The Pink Boat Regatta Seattle raised a total of $60,185.

Now that school’s back in session, here’s a reminder that the Seattle Public Library offers free in-person homework help for children and teens at several neighborhood branches, including the Broadview Library at 12755 Greenwood Ave. N. Homework help is offered from 6-7:45 p.m. on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. The library also offers free online assistance for students of all ages, including tutoring for adults.

Library-trained homework helpers can assist students struggling to understand a homework assignment or needing ideas to start a research paper. Homework helpers also are familiar with the range of the Library’s other homework help resources and can devote one-on-one time with students that librarians sometimes cannot.

Online Homework Help is offered in English and Spanish. Tutoring in math, science, English and social studies is available from 1 p.m. to 10 p.m., seven days a week. Library patrons may also use the Ask a Librarian reference service, available 24 hours a day, or access online resources for teens and children.

The Phinney Neighborhood Association has launched its 34th annual PNA Membership Campaign, “We Live Here, We Give Here!”

A connected community fosters strong families, a rich social life, ready friendships and a feeling of belonging. PNA provides large and small ways to connect and build the social networks and close bonds that define our community. We’ve created programs for preschoolers through seniors, families and singles, homeowners and renters, financially secure neighbors and people who are struggling.

Memberships are vital—dues make up a significant percentage our budget, enabling us to offer infrastructure, support and resources for neighbors to come together to develop new programs and projects, as well to continue all that we currently do. Join or renew today.

Aging and Disability Services — the Area Agency on Aging for Seattle-King County wants to get the word out about two programs that help families navigate the elder care maze.

  • Senior Information & Assistance (1-888-4ELDERS) is for anyone age 60+ and their family members who needs help identifying resources that meet their needs.
  • The King County Caregiver Support Network provides guidance to unpaid primary caregivers of adults of any age who are unable to care for themselves—typically family members or close friends or neighbors.

The organization also is looking for community input through an online survey, which is open through Sept. 30.

Phinney Books is expanding its popular Friday morning story time for toddlers to Mondays, beginning Sept. 22. Both story times begin at 11 a.m. Brandee will read stories on Monday and the ever-popular Steph will continue reading on Fridays.

The Woodland Park Zoo has welcomed its third Chilean flamingo chick this year. Two other chicks hatched Aug. 31 and Sept. 5. The chicks are currently being cared for off public exhibit but will join the adult colony in the flamingo exhibit in about 30 days. A total of 14 flamingos have hatched at the zoo since the exhibit opened in 2008.

The Refugee and Immigrant Children’s Program, a program of Lutheran Community Services, is looking for foster families in our neighborhood. The program provides care to refugee and immigrant children from around the world.

Our neighborhood’s annual trick-or-treating along Phinney-Greenwood avenues is set for the Saturday before Halloween. From 12-3 p.m. on Oct. 25, children in costume will be welcomed at participating businesses for the Hunger Goblin Trick or Treat. Donation stations to benefit the Greenwood Food Bank will be set up along the route and the Hunger Goblin will be available for photos at Umpqua Bank. Donate a can of food or $2 to receive a Hunger Goblin sticker (stickers available ahead of time at Umpqua Bank). You do NOT need a sticker to trick-or-treat. To become a participating business, email biz@phinneycenter.org.


City Fruit looking to harvest late-season pears and apples from neighborhood trees

September 17th, 2014 by Doree

Non-profit organization City Fruit is looking for Greenwood and Phinney Ridge fruit tree owners to let volunteers harvest their extra fruit to donate to local food banks and meal programs, including the Greenwood Food Bank. Right now they’re looking to harvest late-season pears and apples.

City Fruit has collected more than 15,000 pounds of fruit so far this harvest season. If you have fruit trees to be harvested, contact Harvest Coordinator Luke Jesperson at luke@cityfruit.org.

And they’re always looking for volunteer harvesters. You can sign up online.

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Mini park will pop up in parking space in Phinney Ridge for Friday’s annual PARK(ing) Day

September 16th, 2014 by Doree

The annual PARK(ing) Day is this Friday, with more than 50 pop-up parks throughout the city, including one in Phinney Ridge. PARK(ing) Day turns parking spaces into public places for one day, to re-think how streets can be used to promote a healthy, walkable community.

Our neighborhood’s pop-up park will be in front of A-1 Piano at 7020 Greenwood Ave. N. They’ll have pianos there for anyone to play.

Here’s their pop-up park from last year.

PARKing Day 2013 - A1piano-resized

PARK(ing) Day spaces will be in place from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Friday. Check out the website for a full list and map of all parks throughout the city.

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Greenwood Community Council meets tonight to discuss Seattle 2035 Comprehensive Plan Update and form study groups

September 16th, 2014 by Doree

Tonight’s Greenwood Community Council meeting will be from 7-8:30 p.m. at Taproot Theatre Cafe, 208 N 85th St. (refreshments available for purchase).

The main topic on the agenda is an introduction and overview of the Seattle 2035 Comprehensive Plan Update. The GCC is forming study groups for its complementary Greenwood 2035 plan.

Tom Hauger from Seattle’s Department of Planning and Development will give an overview of the Seattle 2035 update process for Seattle’s Comprehensive Plan and some of the key issues that will be addressed. Tom will also take audience questions. This will be a good opportunity to get oriented to the comprehensive planning process for those who hope to become more involved in it. (For those who are opinionated about development issues, this is not the forum to air them, but there will be plenty of opportunities as the process continues.)

Looking ahead to next month, the October GCC meeting will be the annual Election Forum at Taproot Theatre, on Oct. 21 at 7 p.m.

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Parade of LED-wrapped metal monkeys will light up Phinney-Greenwood this holiday season

September 15th, 2014 by Doree

The PNA Business Advisory Group and the Greenwood Arts Council have organized a fun new project for the November-December holiday season. They’ll light the air raid tower at North 67th Street and Phinney Avenue North and hang 150 monkeys with lights from trees, awnings and poles all along Phinney and Greenwood avenues from North 59th to 87th streets.

Here’s a prototype being shaped in the workshop.


And here it is all lit up.


The project is made possible by a grant from Seattle’s Department of Neighborhoods, which means the community has to match it with volunteer hours.

Here’s more info from organizers Ann Bowden and Mike Veitenhans:

The idea grew out of discussions about ways to promote the neighborhood businesses. The air raid tower is a unique feature in the neighborhood and became a natural focus for the project and a central location for a lighting event. In addition, the Woodland Park Zoo’s new WildLights offered an opportunity to capitalize on the thousands of people who travel to the neighborhood to see holiday lights. And so the project was born.

This fall, a 17-foot tall, 20-spoked, 6000 LED structure (shaped something like a cone) will be created to hang from the tower’s work platform. On Nov. 29, the structure will be lighted during a holiday lighting event.

In addition, 150 metal frame monkeys will also be created, wrapped in LED lighting strips and posted on trees, lamp posts, awnings and in windows at various locations along Phinney and Greenwood. Think what fun it will be trying to spot all of the monkeys who’ve “escaped” from the Zoo’s WildLights.

Because this is a DON grant, community members are needed to help match the funds with volunteer efforts – everything from helping to create the monkeys to hanging them to planning and executing the lighting event.

First up – Benders are needed soon. Volunteer “benders” will bend 1/8″ x 3/4″ flat bar into various monkey shapes. The work will be done in a workshop in South Lake Union. Volunteers will be trained, need to have strong hands, not be afraid of sweating and getting dirty, and able to work at least 2-hour shifts. Tack welding experience would be nice.

Additional volunteer job descriptions will be developed soon.

Anyone interested in being part of this should contact Mike Veitenhans or Ann Bowden by emailing biz@phinneycenter.org or mike.v@comcast.net.

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Green Lake closed to swimming and all water contact due to toxic algae

September 12th, 2014 by Doree

Seattle Parkes and Recreation today closed Green Lake to swimming and water contact for people and pets because of toxic algae.

People and pets should not swim, wade or play in the lake. Dog owners should be especially cautious not to allow animals to go in or drink from the lake. If there is water contact for a pet, it is important to rinse well to remove all algae.

Symptoms of illness from contacting the toxins in water are eye, nose, and mouth irritation and skin rash. If accidental contact occurs, use clean water to promptly rinse skin. Swallowing the toxins may cause abdominal pain, diarrhea vomiting and in severe cases liver damage. If symptoms occur after swallowing lake water, park users should consult a health care professional or veterinarian immediately. Pets are at highest risk.

Tests have revealed that high levels of toxins are currently found in the algae and are higher in areas where algae collect. King County Department of Natural Resources has been conducting weekly testing of water at various locations around Green Lake as well as scum samples submitted through the State Toxic Algae Program. After each test, the information is reviewed by Public Health – Seattle & King County.

The lake remains open to fishing (though fish should be thoroughly cleaned) and boating in stable boats. Avoid areas of scum when boating.

Seattle Parks and Recreation’s lifeguarded beaches closed for the season on Sept. 1.

A warm, dry summer has promoted the algae bloom, and continued warm weather continues to promote it. Blooms have been known to last into November in particularly warm autumns, and typically disappear as the weather gets colder.

Toxic algae blooms appeared at Green Lake in 1999, 2002, 2003, 2012 and in 2013, resulting in warnings to the public about exposure to the algae. Intense blooms of blue-green algae have occurred in Green Lake since 1916. Phosphorus released from the bottom sediments stimulates algae growth. Treating the lake with alum inactivates the phosphorus that is released from the bottom sediments and prevents stimulation of the algae growth. Green Lake was successfully treated with alum in 1991 and 2004. The water quality improved for several years following treatment on both occasions, and has been mostly good since 2004.

Green Lake is home to cyanobacteria, also known as blue-green algae that are regularly present in small numbers. When nutrients are plentiful and the weather is warm, the conditions are right for an algae bloom to take place. Winds can concentrate the buoyant cyanobacteria into accumulations or scums along the shoreline, which may increase the amount of toxin that could be ingested by pets or people using the lake recreationally.

For more information on cyanobacteria, please visit Washington Department of Health toxic algae website.

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Weekend events: Artwalk, live music, farmers market, music improv

September 12th, 2014 by Doree

Plenty to do in the neighborhood on this gorgeous weekend. Here are a few highlights. Check our Events calendar for more.

Monthly Art Up PhinneyWood Artwalk in Phinney Ridge and Greenwood from 6-9 p.m. Friday. Dozens of galleries and other businesses will host artists in various mediums, and several restaurants/pubs have Artwalk specials. Check out the Artwalk website for a list of all participating venues and a map.

Phinney Farmers Market from 3-7 p.m. Friday in the upper parking lot of the Phinney Neighborhood Association, 6532 Phinney Ave. N. Fresh veggies, fruit, bread, flowers, honey and more, plus several dinner options.

Couth Buzzard Books, 8310 Greenwood Ave. N., presents Kate MacLeod in a Pacific NW Folklore Society Coffeehouse Concert at 7:30 p.m. Friday; Sing with Kate Power & Steve Einhorn at 12 p.m. Saturday; and Kenny Mandell’s Music Improv Session with Randy Doak and Lamar Lofton at 7 p.m. Sunday.

Community meeting with Seattle Public Schools Boardmember Sherry Carr, from 8:30-9:30 a.m. Saturday at Bethany Community Church, 8023 Green Lake Dr.

September Awareness Through Movement class, 9-10 a.m. Saturday at Ladywell’s Vitality Spa & Sauna, 8538 1st Ave. NW.

Crankie Fest: East Meets West at 7 p.m. Sunday at Empty Sea Studios, 6300 Phinney Ave. N.

Acoustic Open Mic at 7:30 p.m. at Tim’s Tavern, 602 N. 105th St.

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Phinney Center’s Power of Community breakfast and Capital Campaign kick-off

September 10th, 2014 by Doree

Two important events are coming up for the Phinney Neighborhood Association, 6532 Phinney Ave. N.

First up is the third annual Power of Community Fundraising Breakfast to support the PNA’s senior programs, from 7-8:30 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 17, at the Greenwood Senior Center, 525 N. 85th St. The keynote address, “Tilting at Windmills: Changing Aging in the 21st Century,” is by Kavan Peterson, co-founder of the pro-aging multi-blog network ChangingAging.org. You can register for the breakfast online. Attending the event is free, but participants are encouraged to donate at least $50. And if you aren’t able to attend the breakfast but would still like to contribute, click here.

Then, on Oct. 1, the PNA will host a kickoff party for the next phase of its Capital Campaign, which will upgrade the Brick Building. The building was built in 1917 and is not ADA accessible and does not have an elevator. Join the kickoff party from 6-8 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 1, in Community Hall of the Brick Building. Take a tour of the building and learn more about the renovations. Light refreshments will be provided. RSVP to Amy Besunder, Development Director, at amyb@phinneycenter.org.

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News roundup: 826 Seattle workshops, charity walk, PEPS assistant needed, new school, real estate assessments

September 10th, 2014 by Doree

Here’s a roundup of neighborhood news.

Greenwood’s nonprofit tutoring and writing center, 826 Seattle, will open registration for fall workshops on Monday at 8 a.m. Many workshops fill up quickly so register early. (The website calendar will be empty until registration goes live at 8 a.m.) 826 Seattle also will host two College Entrance Essay Marathon sessions this fall. High school juniors and seniors can drop in with a partially finished essay – or one that’s not even started, and get some mentoring help. Sessions are from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 8, at Ballard High School; and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 9, at 826 Seattle (a.k.a. Greenwood Space Travel & Supply Co., at 8414 Greenwood Ave. N.) High school tutoring is available on a drop-in basis from 6-8 p.m. Monday through Thursday. Tutoring for 1st through 8th grades is full, but they are accepting wait list applications.

The fourth annual Dick’s Drive-In Change For Charity walk from Edmonds to all six Dick’s locations raised more than $2,000 for nonprofit organizations helping the homeless. Nineteen participants walked 22 miles in about 10 hours. Participants and customers raised more than $1,000, which Dick’s Drive-In matched. The money will go to Dick’s Change For Charity Partners: Mary’s Place, First Place School, FareStart, ROOTS Young Adult Shelter, The Compass Center, Operation Nightwatch, St. Martin de Porres Shelter, and Cocoon House.


Photo Credit: Larry Vogel, My Edmonds News.

PEPS (The Program for Early Parent Support) is looking for one or more Little Peppers assistants for its Greenwood and Wallingford PEPS meetings. The Greenwood meeting is from 10:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Tuesdays, from Sept. 23 through Dec. 2, at All That Dance at 320 N. 85th St.

This is a great role for someone who is available during the day (without children in tow) and wants to make a little money and hang out with cute toddlers. We pay $30 for each meeting, and the gist of the role is to engage the toddlers in the groups while their parents tend to their newborns and have a discussion. We’d love to find a few helpers who could consistently help with these groups through the school year (Little Peppers Groups are scheduled every quarter, so after the round this fall, they’ll begin again in January and April).

If you are interested, please contact Cate Palmer, PEPS Volunteer manager, at catep AT peps.org.

The deadline for the city’s Neighborhood Matching Fund’s Small and Simple Projects Fund is Monday, Oct. 6. The fund provides matching awards of up to $25,000 to neighborhood groups and community organizations for community-building projects. To get an overview of the Neighborhood Matching Fund and the application process and requirements, attend one of two workshops. The nearest to our neighborhood is at Northgate Community Center, 10510 5th Ave. NE, from 6-8 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 16. To RSVP call 206-733-9916 or go online at surveymonkey.com/s/NMFWorkshop. Childcare and interpreters can be arranged when you RSVP and request these services at least 72 hours in advance.

The MMSC Day School has opened at 8420 Dayton Ave. N. Here’s their mission statement:

The mission of MMSC is to instill the values to build the character which fosters a child’s Jewish identity. Within a warm nurturing environment, we provide excellence in Judaic and secular education to a diverse community of Jewish children. As a school we foster self-esteem and social skills, cultivate active members of the Jewish community and develop responsible citizens.

You can still buy Community Solar units produced by solar arrays at the Phinney Neighborhood Association and the Woodland Park Zoo. Units cost $150. The zoo’s panels are being installed on the Rain Forest Food Pavilion this week. With a third solar array on the zoo’s Commissary building, they will provide almost 75 kilowatts of solar electricity to our energy. It is the largest community solar project in Washington State. (Note: Community Solar is a PhinneyWood sponsor.)

Naked City Brewery & Taphouse has announced its fall lineup for its Naked Sessions Concert Series at 8564 Greenwood Ave. N. Each concert begins at 8 p.m. and costs $10. Tickets are available in advance at Brown Paper Tickets.

  • Galen Disston from Pickwick – Saturday, Sept. 27
  • Tomo Nakayama – Saturday, Oct. 25
  • Anna Tivel – Saturday, Nov. 22

The King County Assessor’s Office has mailed 2014 Residential Valuation Notices to property owners in Area 42, which includes Phinney Ridge.

Area 42 residential property values generally increased by +13.8% but individual property values might vary. The Assessor’s Office will continue to mail out more than 600,000 residential and commercial valuation notices to taxpayers throughout the rest of King County between September and October.

Residential property is assessed each year at 100 percent of its true and fair market value in money, which is defined by Washington State law as the amount of money that a willing and unobligated buyer is willing to pay a willing and unobligated seller. Residential values are determined based on multiple sales of similar properties.

The King County Assessor’s Office annually revalues all properties and conducts a physical inspection on each property once every six years. The last physical inspection of the Phinney Ridge/Fremont area was conducted in 2013.

Assessor Lloyd Hara would like to remind all property owners to carefully review the information contained in the valuation notice. If you feel a mistake has been made in valuing your property, it is recommended that you contact the Assessor’s Office directly before filing an appeal at 206-296-7300 or assessor.info@kingcountygov.

Property owners can review their property information online using eReal Property and review our Area Reports on the Assessor’s homepage at www.kingcounty.gov/assessor or with the Assessor’s staff to make sure an error has not been made. King County allows 60 days from the valuation’s postmark date to file an appeal with the King County Board of Equalizations.
Some low-income seniors, disabled veterans, or disabled persons retired because of a disability might be eligible for a property tax deferral or exemption. The King County Assessor’s Office encourages you or those you know to contact our office to determine eligibility.

For King County taxpayers who need advice and assistance on property tax related matters, including appeals, contact the King County Tax Advisor at 206-477-1060 or by email attaxadvisor@kingcounty.gov


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Cat shot by pellet gun in Greenwood

September 10th, 2014 by Doree

Brenna says her 1-year-old cat was shot by some kind of pellet gun sometime in the last few days. It happened just north of Sandel Park in Greenwood. The pellet is lodged in the cat’s hind foot.

Though we are thankful that she isn’t hurt worse, we are highly concerned that if this wasn’t an accident there may be a vicious person around our Greenwood neighborhood.

Has anyone else had this happen to their pet?

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Red chicken found near 65th & 2nd

September 10th, 2014 by Doree

Update: Lena’s owners have been found.

Earlier: Wayne says he found a big red chicken near 65th and 2nd Avenue NW yesterday. Email him if it’s yours.


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Annual Festival of Fruit at Carkeek Park’s Piper’s Orchard is Saturday

September 9th, 2014 by Doree

The Friends of Piper’s Orchard is hosting the annual Festival of Fruit from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 13, at Carkeek Park‘s historic orchard. Events begin at Carkeek Park Environmental Learning Center, 950 NW Carkeek Park Rd. There will be a cider pressing and tasting, live music, activities for kids, and guided tours of the orchard.

All are welcome to join for:

  • Informational presentations: Experts including the renowned Dr. Bob Norton, retired research scientist from WSU Extension in Mt. Vernon, and Shaun Shepherd from Portland’s Home Orchard Society will give talks on apple varieties and identification.
  • Apple identification: Bring apples from your home orchard for variety identification.
  • Fresh pressed cider: Visitors are encouraged to try out making cider the old-fashioned way, with a hand cranked cider press.
  • Homemade pie: Visitors can donate homemade pies. Fresh warm cider and slices of homemade pie will be available for a nominal cost, with proceeds to support ongoing maintenance of the orchard.
  • Orchard tours: Expert volunteers who have restored the orchard will lead tours, pointing out the heirloom varieties that are going strong as well as younger trees and newly planted grape vines.
  • Apple Tasting: Visitors will have the chance to taste heirloom apple varieties that are grown in the orchard.
  • Kids’ crafts: Little ones will enjoy organized arts and crafts activities.
  • Cider making presentation: Watch and learn how to make cider during a presentation starting at 2:30 p.m.

The festival is free and open to the public. Visitors are encouraged to park below the learning center. Volunteers will be directing guests. For more information, please call 206-684-0877 or visit www.pipersorchard.org.

The Festival is sponsored by Friends of Piper’s Orchard, Seattle Parks and Recreation, Carkeek Park Advisory Council, Seattle Tree Fruit Society and City Fruit.