12th Annual Sustainable Ballard Festival Is This Saturday!


This Saturday is the 12th Annual Sustainable Ballard Festival from 11am-5pm at the Ballard Commons Park. This FREE family-friendly event is packed with some great activities, workshops, and great hands-on games. Join the Garden Party – make a mad hat and sample some of Ballard’s tastiest teas & sweets in the Taste of Ballard Tea Garden. There will also be a chance to win-prizes, listen to live music on the solar-powered main stage, enter to win an electric bike, learn new ways to upcycle, help make fresh cider and hang with some pretty neat farm animals.

This is a great opportunity to learn together, get inspired, and discover new ways to live more lightly on the earth. Also, this event has partnered with Seattle Summer Parkways and will be the base-camp of a 7 mile loop which will feature activities at a variety of stops along the way.

Here is a list and time frames of some of the great activities happening.



11:00 AM: Ricky Gene Powell

12:15 PM: Hot Cider String Band

1:30 PM: Sustainable Brain: BrainDance for Everybody!

2:00 PM: Ped and Pet Parade Starts

2:30 PM: Charlie and the Rays

3:45 PM: Steven Curtis

4:45 PM: Raffle Drawing



10:30 AM: Yoga with Ballard Health Club

11:45 AM: Qigong with Embrace The Moon

1:00 PM: BUBBLE MAN (Kids & Kidults Program)

2:15 PM: Tijiquan (Tai Chi) with Embrace The Moon

3:30 PM: Zumba with Ballard Health Club

Ongoing: Z-Ultimate Self Defense (Periodic 10 minute demos throughout the day)



11:00 AM: Chinook Book Giveway
Thanks to a generous donation from Swansons Nursery, the first 120 people to visit this station will receive a free 2016 Chinook Book (print edition)! Please no queue before 10 am.

12:30 PM: Bringing Nature to Neighborhoods
Mary Fleck, Seattle Green Spaces Coalition
Learn about opportunities for bringing nature to neighborhoods through open spaces in Seattle.

12:50 PM: Benefits of Going Solar and Living Green
Aimee Carpenter, SolTerra
We will ask a few volunteers from the audience to participate in a demonstration, followed by a short talk on the benefits of going solar and living green.

1:10 PM: Energy and Water Saving Strategies
Leah Missik, Built Green
We will give a short talk on which energy and water saving strategies in the home have the greatest impact, so you can know where to concentrate your environmental efforts!

1:30 PM: Why Choose an Electric Bike?
Heidi Schlesinger, Seattle Electric Bike
What’s new in the electric bike world, including the health benefits, and our best answer to the question, Why choose an electric bike over a conventional bike?

1:50 PM: Climate Change and Initiative 732
Ben Silesky, Carbon Washington
We will explain the policy basics of Carbon Washington’s I-732 ballot initiative for a revenue neutral carbon tax, our political strategy, a campaign update and how everyone can get involved. We will then pass around boards to sign the initiative and volunteer.

2:20 PM: Bike Insurance
Sean Kuhlmeyer, Emerald City Bike Lawyer
Sean Kuhlmeyer, the bike lawyer, will be giving his famous and popular, but brief, talk about bicycle insurance, and how to make sure that you are protected if you get hurt in a bike crash. If you are a cyclist you need to know this information!

2:40 PM: Solar Impact
Chris Horne, Sunergy Systems
How many barrels of oil will be saved if your home converts to solar?

3:00 PM: Sustainability Within: Chinese Medicine Can Help The World
Avigail Cohen, Ballard Acupuncture Center
Chinese medicine is built on the natural sustainability that exists within the body. Learn about how your body systems parallel The Earth’s natural checks and balances, and learn how Acupuncture promotes an internal harmony that allows us to relate to the world in a more sustainable and harmonious way.

3:20 PM: Mastering Milking a Goat
Lacia Lynne Bailey, Ravenna Ridge Metro Milkers
Well, not really “master” it in this short demo but you’ll learn the basics of technique, equipment, sanitation and process, plus the all important after-milking ritual. Led by Lacia Lynne Bailey, breeder of Seattle’s only finished dairy goat champions since 2008 on her urban farm, Ravenna Ridge Metro Milkers.

3:40 PM: Shipping Container becomes ADU
Michael Vacirca, Lastingnest, Inc.
We are turning a shipping container into ADU (accessory dwelling unit).  Learn about the permitting process and details of this very affordable building method and how it could be used to create affordable housing.



Come learn to skateboard at the Sustainable Ballard Festival!  Skate Like a Girl will be running four 30-minute co-ed clinics for FREE during the festival, as well as providing boards and protective gear. All ages and all abilities encouraged!   Be sure to register early — each clinic is limited to ten participants.  Skate Like a Girl will also be hosting demonstrations throughout the day. Don’t miss it!

11:00 AM – 12:00 PM: Register for clinics, free skate at park
12:00 PM – 12:30 PM: Clinic #1
12:30 PM – 1:15 PM: Gear return, free skate and demo in bowl; last call for Clinic #2
1:15 PM – 1:45 PM: Clinic #2
1:45 PM – 2:30 PM: Gear return, free skate and demo in bowl; last call for Clinic #3
2:30 PM – 3:00 PM: Clinic #3
3:00 PM – 3:30 PM: Gear return, free skate and demo in bowl; last call for Clinic #4
3:30 PM – 4:00 PM: Clinic #4
4:00 PM – 5:00 PM: Gear return, free skate

Note:  Lesson spots will be given away if participant does not show five minutes after the clinic start time. Late entries may be allowed or not, up to the discretion of clinic leads. Demos are in free skate / jam format with no formal programming.


Easter Brunch In the Ballard(ish) Area


Besides the Easter bunny and eating your weight in chocolate, Easter means one thing: brunch! If you’re not preparing a meal at home while the little ones hunt for eggs this Sunday, you could choose to let someone else do the cooking for you at one of these Ballard (and surrounding area) restaurants, all offering delicious spring-inspired menus.

All three of chef Maria Hines’ restaurants will be offering special three-course menus for Easter. Albacore tuna benedict, blueberry apricot scones and omelets will be on offer at Fremont’s Sicilian-inspired Agrodolce. Oh, and most importantly: bottomless mimosas. $25 per diner. At Hines’ Ballard outpost, the Mediterranean-influenced Golden Beetle, diners can sample housemade yogurt, pork shank hash and rosewater baklava, among other offerings on the menu. $25 per diner. A little further up the hill in Wallingford, Tilth will offer a three-course menu for $30, or $40 including a mimosa and coffee.

Hot Cakes Molten Chocolate Cakery on Ballard Avenue will be serving baked-to-order frittatas and Easter treats such as creme yvette and lemon curd milkshakes, along with a “brunch punch.” Sounds delicious!

Vif Wine and Coffee in Fremont will host a three-course brunch featuring a sweet and savory pastry board with house-made jam, polenta with spring vegetables, poached egg and ham, and buttermilk panna cotta with rhubarb compote and pistachio shortbread. If that doesn’t get you in the mood for spring, we don’t know what will! $25 per diner.


Fremont Oktoberfest Starts Today

The annual Fremont Oktoberfest starts today as thousands of people will hit the streets of Fremont to celebrate for the 17th time, this annual tradition. It has been previously featured as a “Top ten place to celebrate in the world”.  With over 100 beers of tap for individuals to try, this all weekend event is sure to have a brew that suits you. Oktoberfest will feature both a kid friendly section as well as an over 21 beer garden. 5044573757_1fd66a6873

The tasting garden will be open as follows with last call a half hour prior to the listed closing time.

  • Friday, September 20 — 5:00pm-12:00midnight*
  • Saturday, September 21 — 11:00am-12:00midnight*
  • Sunday, September 22 — 11:00am-6:00pm**

Sunday morning is the 11th annual 5k run with the finish line in the middle of the Oktoberfest Village. While some may choose a more healthy hydration (boring), others may opt to hydrate themselves with a seasonal beer which is included in your $25 registration for the race.

Oktoberfest runs all weekend long but for more information please visit their website here.

PhinneyWood Summer Streets Starts Friday

This Friday and Saturday August 9th & 10th come out to the PhinneyWood Summer Streets which is a huge family friendly party taking place on Greenwood Ave between N 67th and N 88th street. Greenwood Ave will be closed off to traffic during these two days to allow for the many events and games to take place. 

Here are just a few of the many events that will be taking place this weekend

  • Naked City Brewery Soccer Tournament 
  • Seattle Police Department Helmet Fittings
  • TASTY’s 4th Annual Art n Craft Fair
  • Phinney Center Gallery
  • 826 Seattle’s Portable Planetarium

For a complete list of events that will be taking place, please visit Seattle.gov. 

Best Seattle Bars to Watch the Olympics

If you’ve been keeping up with any of the Olympics this year, you’ve probably noticed that there is quite a handful of local Washingtonians representing the United States, as well as other countries at the London games this year. Our state is represented by hot shot swimmer Nathan Adrian,  Basketball Star Sue Bird, and Adrienne Martelli in women’s rowing. If you’ve been busy outside enjoying the sunshine, or holed up at work during prime Olympic hours, we’ve got a handful of local neighborhood bars that are playing the games non-stop through August 12th, so you can catch team USA in action.

If you’re in Capitol Hill the newest sports bar in town 95 Slide open from 2-2, and the bar is planning on having food and drink specials during major Olympic events such as the basketball finals. If you’d like to feel like you’re in London, hit up one of the  sister English pubs, in Ballard the Market Arms or George and Dragon (operated by the same English owner). Spit Fire and Buckley’s in Belltown will have specials during popular Olympic events, and Spitfire will be hosting a closing ceremony party, similar to the big event they had on opening night. Come on out and experience the Olympic tradition, and success of team USA with your neighboring sports fans through August 12th!

Help Give the Tigers’ Lair a Remodel at Woodland Park Zoo

The Tiger and Sloth bear exhibits at the Woodland Park Zoo haven’t seen any updates in the past 60 years and it’s about time they received some  fresh new interiors! The Zoo is planning the biggest design they’ve seen since the 1990s and plans to build a brand spankin new state-of-the-art exhibit for the Malayan Tigers, sloth bears, small clawed otters, birds, and much more over two acres long! This new exhibit is also hoped to shed light on the crucial need for tiger advocates to help save wild tigers, whose future is unknown and at risk.

Donate towards the Malayan Tiger Habitat, photo courtesy of the Woodland Park Zoo

If you’ve been to the Woodland Park Zoo, and love to see the animals they host living in comfort, the Zoo would like to extend a little encouragement for you to pass along the word that the Zoo will need the community’s help in funding this new sanctuary for their furry friends. The Zoo is currently running a campaign, asking friends to pledge $10 a person, “Give 10 For Tigers” and encourages everyone who donates to ask ten friends to pledge as well. They have $200,000 left to raise in order to hire builders and start construction and every dollar donated is a step closer to their goal. If they raise $100,000 by midnight on May 25th, a local family has even graciously pledged to donate the other $100,000 necessary to fund the new tiger palace! If you’d like more information on how to donate, please visit the Woodland Park Zoo website.