Ballard SeafoodFest Is This Weekend!

seafoodAs a neighborhood with deep maritime roots, it’s only fitting that Ballard would have an entire festival devoted to seafood. The 40th anniversary of the Ballard SeafoodFest (and second iteration of the accompanying BeerFest), takes over Market Street and Ballard Avenue this weekend with more than 20 food vendors offering everything from Filipino-style seafood to Northwest crab cakes and, of course, the traditional salmon barbecue.

BeerFest has expanded this year, and will be featuring some familiar names from around the neighborhood at its new spot near the main music stage at 22nd Avenue NW and Ballard Avenue. Look for Hilliard’s, Reuben’s, Stoup, Bad Jimmy’s, NW Peaks, and Peddler, along with many more breweries from around the Northwest. 14 ounce beers are $5.00, and there will be wine for $7 for all of you non-beer-drinkers. For more family-friendly activities, head to Ballard Commons Park for the skateboard competition, the giant kids’ slide, and vendors offering a wide array of stuff just for kids. Make sure to come back on Sunday afternoon for the kids’ superhero costume contest and the raffle drawing – the grand prize is two tickets on Iceland Air!

Festivities are slated to begin at 11:00 a.m. on both Saturday and Sunday, and BeerFest wraps up at 10:00 each night. Click here for a full schedule of the events!

Where To Watch The World Cup In Ballard

South Africa Brazil 2014 Soccer WCup Emblem

While any bar with a television will most likely be showing a World Cup game or two, some establishments may be a little more committed to the morning and mid-day live broadcast times than others. Here is a (surprisingly long) list of bars in the Ballard area that will be going the extra mile to show live games. Many of them will also be offering World Cup food and drink specials (info from Seattle Met):

Kangaroo & Kiwi – This Australian-owned pub will be open at 8:00 a.m. every day for the duration of the World Cup (June 12 – July 13) and will be showing every game on its eight indoor TV screens and specially installed TVs in two outdoor beer gardens. Beer and breakfast sandwich specials will be on the menu.

The Market Arms – The World Cup schedule on The Market Arms’ website warns “NO BIRTHS, WEDDINGS OR WORK” between June 12 and July 13. That is how seriously they’re taking their WC viewing. They’ll be showing all games live and replaying select games later in the evening for those of you who can’t skip out on work to go to a bar at 9:00 in the morning (probably most of you). Check their website for the complete schedule.

The George & Dragon – The self-proclaimed “Home of Football” (or in this case, “Futebol”) will predictably be showing all of the games and replays of quite a few, as well. This is always a popular spot, so be prepared for big crowds.

Other bars that will be open for all games: Ballard Loft, The Leary Traveler, Molly Maguires, Bad Albert’s Tap and Grill, La Isla, The Dray, and the Phinney Neighborhood Association. Click the links for all the details!

April Real Estate Recap

April continued the trend of 2014 as a seller’s market. In the North Seattle area the median home price sold for 7.5% more when compared to April of last year. This increase in price has to do with the sharp decrease in the number of new listings that came on the market. Compared to April 2013 there were about 20% less new listings than there were in April 2013. Inventory is overall still very low with less than one month supply.

When looking at the specific area of Ballard we saw similar trends. The number of new listings decreased by 21% and the average days on market for a home in Ballard was 19! Compared to April of 2013, the median sold price of a Ballard home in April 2014 rose by 16.9% or almost $75,000. While much of this has to do with the decrease in overall inventory it also has to do with the popularity of the Ballard neighborhood. If you are looking for more information on the Ballard real estate market, feel free to contact me.

 

*Data provided by the NWMLS

Ballard Breweries Well Represented At Seattle Beer Week

Ballard breweries represent a large slice of the Seattle-made beer pie, and with Seattle Beer Week starting today and running through May 18, you’ll have another reason to go out and explore some of the neighborhood’s (and city’s, for that matter) best local brews. To begin your beer journey, head up to Chuck’s Hop Shop on NW 85th all day today and tomorrow to sample rare sour beers from Almanac, The Bruery, Cascade, Black Raven, Deschutes and more. Here’s a rundown of the other SBW events happening in Ballard this weekend:

beer

Thursday, 5/8

Friday 5/9

  • The Bruery Draft Takeover at Bitterroot BBQ. A selection of 10 beers including Autumn Maple, Saison de Lente, and Tart of Darkness. 3:00-11:00 p.m.
  • Porkchop & Co. will be serving bread made from spent grains used by Reuben’s Brews and Fremont Brewing alongside meats, cheeses, mustards and sweets (and Reuben’s and Fremont beers, of course). 3:00-7:00 p.m.
  • Willamette Valley’s Block 15 night at The Noble Fir. 4:00-10:00 p.m.
  • Friday Night Trivia with HUB at Ballard Station. 6:00-8:00 p.m.
  • Chrome Satan finally in cans! Release party at Hilliard’s from 7:00-11:00 p.m.

Saturday, 5/10

  • Chuck’s 85th will be pouring 30 IPA’s all day Saturday and Sunday.
  • Rye Beer Fest at Reuben’s Brews with 16 rye beers on tap! Noon-6:00 p.m.
  • All Saison, all the time! Saison Fest at Urban Family Public House, featuring Jolly Pumpkin, Prairie Artisan Ales, Lost Abbey and more. Noon-6:00 p.m.
  • Block party at 418 Public House with beer from Hood River, Oregon’s Double Mountain and California’s Black Market Brewing. Outdoor beer garden, local bands, BBQ and more! 2:00-9:00 p.m. rain or shine.
  • Hilliard’s beer tasting at BevMo! Ballard. Fill up a growler before you leave! 4:00-7:00 p.m.
  • 2nd Annual Bluegrass & Beer Festival at Hale’s Ales has paired up breweries and will feature the resultant beers from collaborations between Diamond Knot & Skagit River, 7 Seas & Port Townsend Brewing, and many more! 5:00-10:00 p.m. Tickets here.

Sunday, 5/11 (Don’t forget your mom while you’re out drinking beer)

  • New Belgium Mother’s Day Dinner at The Leary Traveler. This ticketed event will benefit Seattle charity The Benevolent Guild and features a four-course meal along with five beer tastings from New Belgium. 6:00-9:00 p.m. Tickets here.

Click here to see a full list of Seattle Beer Week events happening all over the city!

Easter Brunch In the Ballard(ish) Area

brunch

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.

 

Phinney Ridge Makes Top Ten

According to this article by RedFin, Phinney Ridge will be one of the top ten hottest real estate markets in 2014. By comparing page views by patrons of the site to different properties all over the country, RedFin determined that Phinney Ridge is going to have a big year. They saw a 178% increase of page views of properties in this area when compared to the previous year. That coupled with the median home price in the Phinney Ridge neighborhood being just over $500,000 lands it at #7 according to RedFin. 

The article states that “the real trend in the 2014 neighborhood popularity is a short commute at an affordable price. The trending neighborhoods offer a short drive to or easy access to a commuter rail line at prices that are not the most expensive in the city.” With easy access to downtown Seattle as well as many transit options, Phinney Ridge fits this description perfectly. I’m sure Red Mill will approve of this!

 

Skateboarder Hit by Car After Smashing Window

Last night at the intersection of 15th Ave NW & NW 80th Street there was an altercation between a mini van and an adult skateboarder. According to the Seattle Police Department blog, the skateboarder was blocking the path of the van and began to smash the hood of the vehicle, shatter the windshield, and yell racial slurs toward the driver. While this was going on the van drove forward running over the skateboarder and pinning him underneath the vehicle.

By the time the medics and police responded, other bystanders had lifted the vehicle off the ground and got the injured person out. The injured party was transported to Harbor View Medical Center with what is being reported as serious injuries. According to the SPD blog, the mini van driver was released pending the results of the investigation. No updated has been given yet of the skateboarder.

Ballard Bike Tour

If you are looking for a way to get outside and enjoy the great summer weather this weekend, consider attending the Sustainable Ballard Seven Wonders Bike Tour. According to their Facebook Event the tour will start this Saturday July 20th at the Ballard Commons Park on 22nd Avenue Northwest & Northwest 58th Street at 9 am.

While they do not list what the seven wonders of Ballard are, with so many to choose from we are confident it will be worth the time. This “easy ride” will be a great way to fit in a workout while enjoying several things that make Ballard so special.

Happy Hour in Ballard

With summer just beginning we thought it was the perfect time to highlight the happy hour scene in Ballard. The Hi-Life which is located just off of Market St. on Russell Ave is the perfect place to meet your friends after a long day at the office. They offer a great selection of $4 food items that include Margherita Pizza, Mac & Cheese, Onion Rings, Suicide Sliders, and many more treats. For beverages you can choose from eight northwest beers, house wine, or well drinks, each for only $3.50. They also offer seasonal specialty cocktails for $5. 

Happy Hour at the Hi-Life runs everyday from 3:00 pm to 6:30 pm and 10 pm to close. On Tuesday’s it goes all evening long from 3 pm until close.  For a complete menu of their happy hour please visit there website at Chowfoods.com.

Ballard Seafood Festival is Back!

This weekend July 13-14 is the annual Ballard Seafood Festival taking place in the heart of downtown Ballard. This annual summer event will showcase various food vendors who will dish out many of the northwest’s most classic seafood dishes as well many other delicious treats! Don’t worry if seafood is not your cup of tea, there will also be various arts and craft booths, non profit vendors, as well as a beer garden that will offer many of the finest local beers around! 

So head on down to Ballard this weekend and celebrate the tradition of Ballard Seafood Festival. For more information visit the Ballard Seafoodfest website.

  • Time: Saturday 11 am to 9 pm  & Sunday 11 am to 7 pm.
  • Where: Downtown Ballard
  • Cost: FREE