News blog for Seattle's Fremont neighborhood


Entries from September 2008

Give your opinion on upcoming development

September 30th, 2008 by Geeky Swedes

Plans to demolish the current Tacos Guaymas and build a residential building on top of a new Tacos Guaymas is moving ahead. Plans call for six units to sit atop the restaurant with parking for 14 cars below-grade.

At an upcoming meeting, the developer will present its plans for the development to the Design Review Board. There will also be an opportunity at this meeting for the public to weigh in on the project. The meeting is Monday, Oct. 13th at 8 p.m. at the Ballard High School Library (1418 NW 65th St.)

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Archie McPhee moving (almost) to Fremont

September 30th, 2008 by Geeky Swedes

Ballard’s popular toy and gadget store Archie McPhee is moving to 45th and Stone Way next year, a store spokesperson says. A liquor store currently occupies the site. “We don’t have a solid date yet, (and) it depends on when we can get occupancy and finish painting and such,” Archie McPhee’s David Wahl explains, estimating it will be around the middle of next year. You may remember Archie McPhee’s original home was on Stone Way in Fremont, so the new location will be right down the street. And yes, since McPhee’s is moving to the NE corner of 45th and Stone Way, it’s technically Wallingford, according to the city of Seattle’s official map. But barely. Since it’s right on the border, perhaps we can just say they’re back in Fremont?

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New boutique prepares to open

September 29th, 2008 by Geeky Swedes

Now that Horseshoe has moved to Ballard, we noticed a new boutique is gearing up to open in the same space at 720 N 35th St.

Joy St. will feature jewelry, women’s clothing and home accessories. The owner, Heather Koszyk, used to run Enexile, a Fremont boutique that closed about a year ago. Joy St. plans to open this coming Friday.

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Pura Vida to open Fremont Cafe

September 29th, 2008 by Geeky Swedes

The Fremont company, Pura Vida Coffee, sells fair trade coffee at 200 colleges and universities as well as the U.S. House of Representatives. But if you want a cup, you’ll have to travel over the bridge to the Seattle Pacific University cafe. CEO Jeff Angell says he wants to open a cafe in Fremont by late next year on Stone Way N. near 35th St. “It’s really important for us to have a destination in town,” Angell told the PI. Pura Vida gives away its profits to help coffee grower communities in Latin America and Africa.

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Scenes you’ll see only in Fremont

September 28th, 2008 by Geeky Swedes

A few photos from our walk around Fremont today.

Some folks out strolling with their pet goats at the Fremont Fair.

A seven-foot tall pile of rocks along 36th Ave. near Phinney, likely created by Benny “the rock balancer,” who has created such structures for years.

Yep, they’re precariously stacked, so don’t touch!

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Help Fremont Abbey with fall projects

September 26th, 2008 by Beth

The Fremont Abbey Arts Center is looking for volunteers tomorrow (Saturday) to help with projects around the building. Tools, snacks and coffee will be provided from 12-3 p.m., and projects include painting and patching, landscaping, cleaning, light carpentry, installing a sink and other tasks.

If you go, the Abbey is located at 4272 Fremont Ave. The tip we received directed potential volunteers to enter on 43rd, and ask for Nathan Marion, the director of the Arts Center. Visit the Fremont Abbey Arts Center website or call 206-297-6221 for more information.

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Fremont Bridge openings questioned

September 22nd, 2008 by Geeky Swedes

The Fremont Bridge is the busiest draw bridge in the country as people who drive over it can probably tell. In today’s Getting There column in the PI, Mary Coward writes that the bridge is often up during her morning bus commute making her miss her connection. “Are there particular hours that are considered ‘off-limits’ for bridge-opening?” It turns out that the Coast Guard is in charge of draw bridges. They have designated 7 a.m. – 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. – 6 p.m. peak traffic hours for cars and won’t open the bridge for small boats weighing less than 1,000 tons. While the city has asked, the Coast Guard has not been receptive to extending those times.

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Fremont Oktoberfest at night

September 21st, 2008 by Geeky Swedes

The Seattle band SHIM plays at the Fremont Oktoberfest while a member of the, ahem, “Seattle Drinking Team” takes a break from the beer.

Cool photo courtesy of jaycoxfilm.

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Pumpkins fall like rain at Oktoberfest

September 20th, 2008 by Geeky Swedes

One of the highlights of Oktoberfest is the Texas Chainsaw Pumpin Carving.

Everyone crowded around the chainsaw-wielding man in the funny hat.

Chunks flew into the audience, much to everyone’s delight.

Here, he delicately (sort of) carves an eye into the pumpkin.

It’s messy work.

Spectators hide behind an umbrella as the chunks fly.

The pumpkin was modeled after this guy, who poses with the final product. (No, it’s not Turtle from HBO’s Entourage.) You can see a repeat performance on Sunday, at the western end of Oktoberfest, at the Adobe stage.

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Beer drinkers brave the rain

September 20th, 2008 by Geeky Swedes

This Saturday afternoon, light rain is falling on the Fremont Oktoberfest.

Beer drinkers came wearing their Gore-Tex, slickers and even sporting a few umbrellas. Not as big a turnout as sunnier festivals, as you might expect. But sometimes there’s no better weather to drink great beer.

Here, the Full Sail folks serve up a cold one…

…to a very happy attendee. Also on tap, Georgetown Brewing, Hale’s, Mac and Jack’s, Snoqualmie, Alaskan Amber and many more.

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Fremont Oktoberfest gets underway

September 19th, 2008 by Beth

Oktoberfest kicked off tonight with hundreds descending along the Ship Canal to taste beers, listen to music, mingle at the Singles lounge and watch the Miss Buxom contest, a new addition. Also new to the festival are scattered cabanas available to rent for private groups of up to fifteen, and a cigar lounge.
Fremont Oktoberfest Entrance
While there were throngs of twenty-somethings throughout Fremont tonight (and noticeably increased police presence, as well), Saturday will draw a much larger crowd. Tomorrow’s activities will include a BMX stunt team jumping leftover kegs from tonight, comedy shows, and the Texas Chainsaw Pumpkin Carving Contest. There are plenty of activities for children at Oktoberfest, and on Sunday, participants will be welcome to bring their dogs into the beer garden. Sunday will also include the Brew-HA-HA 5k and Street Scramble.

Proceeds from Oktoberfest benefit the Fremont Chamber of Commerce, and through them the Fremont Library, B.F. Day School, and the History House. Tickets can be bought in advance online for $15, or at the door for $20 or $25 for four additional drink tokens.

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Oktoberfest road closures

September 19th, 2008 by Geeky Swedes

Twelve-thousand people are expected to converge on Fremont tonight and through the weekend for the annual Oktoberfest event.

(Photo from last year, courtesy of the Oktoberfest.) With all the people and a couple of street closures, traffic and parking is bound to be a mess. N 35th St. and N Canal St. are closed from Phinney Ave. N to 1st Ave. NW. The roads closed Thursday night and will reopen at 11 p.m. Sunday.

Stay tuned to Fremont Universe for Oktoberfest coverage…

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That gray area, is it Fremont or Ballard?

September 18th, 2008 by Geeky Swedes

Earlier this year we asked the question – Is the gray area between Fremont and Ballard considered Frelard or Balmont? Today in the Seattle Times, they ask local businesses where they think they are. Anita’s Crepes (opening soon) says they’re in Ballard while right next door at the Traveler, they claim Fremont. According to City Hall that area is called “Interbay-Ballard.”

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Burglary spree hits Fremont businesses

September 17th, 2008 by Geeky Swedes

Blue Flavor, a web and mobile design company based in Fremont, is one of several businesses that have been burglarized since the beginning of the year. In fact they’ve been broken into three times — the last two burglaries occurring within three days of each other in late August. “An alarm system alone is clearly not good enough to protect you,” says Blue Flavor’s Nick Finck, who says they’ve taken extraordinary steps to beef up security.

It’s all part of a burglary spree that was first reported back in July — as many as 45 burglaries in the Fremont area in one month alone, from Blue Moon Burgers to Quizno’s (pictured above in security video). An overnight burglary at Ballard’s TigerTail may be connected. And an email sent by the Fremont Neighborhood Council lists several brazen residential burglaries, too, some taking place while residents were asleep inside.

Seattle Police are being very tight-lipped on the burglary spree, which may or may not be the work of the same burglars. Renee Witt, a public information officer for the department tells us that they won’t release any information on whether these crimes are all connected or if there are any persons of interest. She says detectives don’t want to jeopardize the investigation. If you have any information on the case, you’re asked to contact the police department.

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Preview of Oktoberfest’s Brew-HA-HA, Scramble

September 16th, 2008 by Beth

Fremont’s annual Oktoberfest with its beer gardens, musical entertainment, and Texas Chainsaw Pumpkin Carving Contest is nearly upon us. And while the 70+ handcrafted beers are certainly the primary highlight of this weekend’s popular festival, Sunday’s Brew-HA-HA 5k Run/Walk followed by the Street Scramble scavenger hunt are often overlooked.
Fremont Oktoberfest Brew-HA-HA 5k
(Photo courtesy of Fremont Oktoberfest.) The Brew-HA-HA 5k, which starts at 10 a.m. at the Adobe plaza (N. 34th street and Fremont Ave N.), will follow a course along 34th St., turn at Latona onto the Burke-Gilman trail and head back towards the beer garden at Phinney Ave N. and N. 35th St. If you reside in the areas participants will be running through, be aware that they may affect your mobility, both on foot, and by vehicle, naturally. Of course, residents along the race route may want to step out on their porches and cheer on the runners.

The Street Scramble scavenger hunt begins at 10:30 a.m. at 34th and Fremont Ave. at the Solstice Plaza — a 90-minute race to reach 30 top-secret destinations in Fremont on foot. Individuals and teams can enter separate divisions (competitive or not), and awards will be presented at 12:45 p.m.

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New organic sandwich shop coming to Fremont

September 15th, 2008 by Geeky Swedes

“Homegrown” is a new organic salad and sandwich shop moving into the north half of the old Sonic Boom location on Fremont Ave. They pride themselves in being a sustainable, homegrown alternative for those who don’t want to sacrifice their lifestyle in order to eat out. The sign on the door says they’ll be open in the spring of 2009. (Thanks Christian for the tip!)

Meanwhile, the smoothie and frozen yogurt shop Mooberry is planning to open soon on the south half of the old Sonic Boom store.

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