News Blog for Seattle's Maple Leaf Neighborhood

 

Entries from March 2010

'Bikes for Books' begins this week

March 29th, 2010 by master

I remember getting gold stars for reading books. But bikes? Now talk about an incentive.

From Thursday, April, 1 to June 3, The Seattle Public Library is hosting the “Bikes for Books” reading program, which offers children in grades one through three the chance to enter a drawing for a bike. For every three books they read, they may enter their name once for the drawing, accompanied with a  short oral book report to a librarian.

There will be a celebration and prize drawing at 4 p.m. Saturday, June 5, at the Fremont Library, 731 N. 35th St. Winners must be present to collect their prizes. A boy and girl each will win a bike, a helmet and a lock.

“Bikes for Books” is sponsored by the Masonic Doric Lodge No. 92 in Fremont. For more information, call the Fremont Library at 684-4084.

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View from the (future) Maple Leaf Park – help plan it!

March 27th, 2010 by Mike

This is the Seattle skyline seen from the top of what is now a giant, noisy dig at the Maple Leaf Reservoir, but in a few years will be part of the Maple Leaf Reservoir Park.

The next public meeting on the park is Thursday, April 22, from 6-8 p.m. at Olympic View Elementary School, 504 N.E. 95th St. The Seattle Parks Department and the Berger Partnership will present draft designs for the park developed after the last public meeting in early February.

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What are your plans this weekend?

March 26th, 2010 by master

Are you ready for festival season yet?

This weekend there’s a bevy, from Taste Washington, featuring seminars for the foodie Saturday at Bell Harbor International Conference Center and the grand tasting event Sunday at Qwest Field Event Center; to the more culturally oriented (and free!) Tastes of Norway/Norwegian Heritage Day(pdf) on Saturday at Ballard’s Leif Erikson Hall, 2245 N.W. 57th St. Where else can you participate in a pickled herring taste-off?

Feel like staying a little closer to home? You can always cuddle up with your family at the Northgate Community Center for Family Fun Night, which will project the family-friendly move “Ice Age” onto the multipurpose room wall from 6:30-8:30 tonight.  The community center will provide mats and popcorn; you bring blankets, pillows and you even can wear your PJs. Cost is $5 per family.

If you’re in the mood for even more bargains, Seattle Tilth will bring the leftovers from last weekend’s Early Spring Edible Plant Sale to Wallingford, behind the Good Shepherd Center, on Saturday. A to-be-heeded warning from our partner blog My Wallingford.

The sale lasts just two hours, 2-4 p.m., and prices will be discounted 40-60%. An Edible Plant Sale at bargain prices in Wallingford? Better get there early.

And The Seattle Times-recommended play “Dying City” continues its run this weekend at Seattle Public Theatre at the Bathhouse, 7312 W. Green Lake Drive N., including a post-play discussion with the cast and director after the 2 p.m. matinee Sunday. Curtain on Friday and Saturday is at 7:30 p.m., and the tickets range from $15 to $27.

What else would you recommend around the city this weekend?

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Skillet Street Food making a neighborhood stop

March 26th, 2010 by master

Are you craving some Skillet Bacon Jam? Your chance to grab a few jars is just hours away, with Skillet Street Food scheduled to make a nearby lunch stop from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. today. The traveling gourmet kitchen will be parked next to Washington Dental Service, 9706 Fourth Ave. N.E., which is just south of Thornton Place. On the menu for today: a burger with arugula, bacon jam and cambozola; poutine; linguine with pecorino, oyster mushrooms and walnut lemon zested pesto; duck tacos with cilantro pepita salsa; and a pear crisp with sweet sour cream. More details, including future stops, are on the Web site.

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Youth Appreciate Week offers citywide activities

March 26th, 2010 by master

There will be plenty for kids to do during Seattle Public Schools’ spring break next week, which the city’s parks and recreation department has declared Youth Appreciation Week.

From today until April 2, there are events planned around the city for kids ages 11-18, including a few here in Northeast Seattle:

  • Put your game face on from 1-4 p.m. Monday, March 29, for the Wii/Xbox Festival and Game Day at Ravenna-Eckstein Community, Center, 6535 Ravenna Ave. N.E. Spend the afternoon playing all the Wii and Xbox games you want, followed by an end-of-day tournament. Games include basketball, volleyball, Frisbee golf and ping pong, and there also will be food.
  • On Wednesday, March 31, kids are invited to Northgate After Hours, from 9-11 p.m. at Northgate Community Center, 10510 Fifth Ave. N.E. There will be music and a Hot Shot competition, and the Game Room, Teen Room and Fitness Room all will be open. They’ll even provide some snacks; you just need to fill in a E-13 Form.
  • Next Friday, April 2, share your poetry, singing and karaoke skills at an Open Mic at Meadowbrook Community Center, 10517 35th Ave. N.E.

Here is the full schedule of events.

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Will we lose Maple Leaf’s landmark water tower?

March 25th, 2010 by Mike

It’s empty.

The million-gallon water tower that can be seen from much of North Seattle and is THE  face of Maple Leaf was drained a half-year ago when construction began on the reservoir park. There’s no plan to ever put it back in service, we learned on a recent tour of the construction site.

Seattle Public Utilities says it has not yet made a decision on the tower’s future. The water tower was built near the corner of Roosevelt Way Northeast and Northeast 85th Street in 1949 to replace two towers built nearly a hundred years ago, around 1915.

Maple Leaf No. 1 was made of wood and could hold 50,000 gallons. Maple Leaf No. 2 was twice as big and made of steel, according to Seattle’s Department of Neighborhoods.  Our familiar tower, which holds 10 times that, is Maple Leaf No. 3.

A survey for that department found the water tower (which they insist on calling a water “tank”) appears to meet criteria to be listed on the National Register of Historic Places and for Seattle’s Landmark Preservation Ordinance. Either would make it harder to demolish, but the tower does not actually appear on either list.

For the city’s preservation ordinance, the tower must be at least 25 years old and “an easily identifiable visual feature of its neighborhood.” The neighborhood survey states: “Painted with a distinctive maple leaf pattern, this steel tank has been a prominent feature in the local neighborhood as well as the northern end of the city since its construction in 1949.”

Should the city pay to preserve and maintain an unused water tower because it’s been the most visible thing around for over a half-century?

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Will we lose Maple Leaf's landmark water tower?

March 25th, 2010 by Mike

It’s empty.

The million-gallon water tower that can be seen from much of North Seattle and is THE  face of Maple Leaf was drained a half-year ago when construction began on the reservoir park. There’s no plan to ever put it back in service, we learned on a recent tour of the construction site.

Seattle Public Utilities says it has not yet made a decision on the tower’s future. The water tower was built near the corner of Roosevelt Way Northeast and Northeast 85th Street in 1949 to replace two towers built nearly a hundred years ago, around 1915.

Maple Leaf No. 1 was made of wood and could hold 50,000 gallons. Maple Leaf No. 2 was twice as big and made of steel, according to Seattle’s Department of Neighborhoods.  Our familiar tower, which holds 10 times that, is Maple Leaf No. 3.

A survey for that department found the water tower (which they insist on calling a water “tank”) appears to meet criteria to be listed on the National Register of Historic Places and for Seattle’s Landmark Preservation Ordinance. Either would make it harder to demolish, but the tower does not actually appear on either list.

For the city’s preservation ordinance, the tower must be at least 25 years old and “an easily identifiable visual feature of its neighborhood.” The neighborhood survey states: “Painted with a distinctive maple leaf pattern, this steel tank has been a prominent feature in the local neighborhood as well as the northern end of the city since its construction in 1949.”

Should the city pay to preserve and maintain an unused water tower because it’s been the most visible thing around for over a half-century?

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Kids can learn secrets of the kitchen

March 25th, 2010 by master

Although spring has just only officially arrived, it’s already time to start planning some summer activities for the kids.

Luckily for Maple Leaf residents, they have a gem right down the street at the Kitchen Coach Cooking School, 850 N.E. 88th St.

If you want to help build some kitchen confidence in your young foodie, the Kitchen Coach has four weeklong classes planned throughout summer:

  • Cake and Company, for ages 10-14, is from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. July 5-9. Students will learn the meaning of key baking terms during the introduction to pastry and cake making, buttercreams, petit-fours, sweet and savory pies, puff pastry, quiche, flatbreads and quick breads.
  • Students are encouraged to bring their favorite home-cooked concoction, as well as any fresh-picked fruit, to the Home Cooking class that focuses on regional American fare. The class, for ages 10-15, is from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. July 26-29, then from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. July 30, with a graduation dinner that same night from 7:30-10.
  • Basics for Budding Chefs is geared toward beginner chefs, ages 7-10, who want to learn more about the fundamentals of cooking. Class is from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. July 19-22, with a class from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. July 23 that includes a graduation lunch for parents at 12:30 p.m.
  • Students ages 12-15 explore cuisines from around the world at Melting Pot/Improvisational Cooking, from 10 to 4 p.m. Aug. 2-5 and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Aug. 6, with a graduation dinner that evening from 7-10.

If you’d like to learn some of these tricks yourself, the Kitchen Coach Cooking School, which is part of Mangia Bene Catering, also offers adult cooking classes. Check out the calendar here.

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Maple Leaf reservoir dig – enough dirt to land a 777

March 25th, 2010 by Mike

Two years from now, all this will be under 30 feet of water. Work will have begun on a new park on top, where the waters of the old, open Maple Leaf Reservoir glistened for the past 100 years.

This is the last, and largest, piece of the city’s program to bury four open reservoirs. It’s also by far the most eye-catching (and ear-numbing) project in the neighborhood, perhaps in the city.

Before it’s done, that rising mountain of dirt at the top end of the reservoir will contain 65,000 cubic yards of soil. If it were concrete, there would be enough to build the third runway at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.  Or to assemble a moon rocket.

The mountain is as high as it will get in this photo (those are the new concrete reservoir walls being built in the foreground). The dirt is being stored on site – and up to its neighbors’ second or third floors – because it would be too expensive to truck away and haul back again, said Duane Narruhn, the project’s construction resident engineer. [Read more →]

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Have you been to Hangfire Design and Frame yet?

March 25th, 2010 by master

After working in a woodshop and growing his business through word of mouth for 10 years, Mark Hutchins has finally found a storefront in Maple Leaf for his artistic framing business, Hangfire Design and Frame at 9211 Roosevelt Way N.E.


Mark Hutchins opened Hangfire Design and Frame in October.

Rather than be fooled by the “frame” part of the name, though, you might want to focus on the “design” part. Yes, he certainly can create conventional framing if that’s what you prefer, but Hutchins, who has been professionally framing for 25 years, has a penchant for unconventional materials that puts the fire in his frames.

“I like to do things that kind of demand attention when you walk into a room,” says the Seattle native, who moved to Maple Leaf shortly after opening his business in October. “I like to try new stuff.”

Although much of the art now hanging in the store is from Hutchins’ personal collection and isn’t for sale, it gives you a good idea of what he’s capable of – like framing a Nirvana drum cover (right) and surrounding it with found art. In this case, the silver sliders often found on the bottoms of chair legs. [Read more →]

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