News blog for Seattle's Fremont neighborhood


Entries from February 2011

Fremont News, Notes, Happenings & Whatnot 2/28

February 28th, 2011 by Sean Keeley

A couple news items to get you up to speed this week…

  • To accommodate new employees that it expects to hire this year, Google is expanding its offices in Seattle, specifically Fremont.
  • Pie is hiring an experience baker/ prep cook. Sorry, they’re not hiring for a “taster” yet.

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Customer Count At Community Centers Begins Today

February 28th, 2011 by Sean Keeley

In order to determine how people use the community centers, Seattle Parks and Recreation is starting a pilot project to count customers.

Starting today, people heading to all 25 community centers, including the nearby Ballard Community Center (6020 28th Ave NW) will be asked to sign in indicating their age group and time of arrival.

The pilot project, which will last two weeks, will help Parks staff respond to a City Council directive to reconsider how community centers are operated. After two weeks Parks will evaluate the information and decide whether to extend it for 10 more weeks. The process, which includes public meetings to discuss with the community ideas for how centers can be run differently, began with a public meeting on February 2.

The directive comes in the context of the budget: the cost to run the 26 centers far exceeds revenue brought in from center programs. Because of the current difficult budget situation, Parks is exploring alternatives that would offer continued services for the public, while reducing costs, including new methods of management, staffing, fundraising, and partnerships. Learning the average age groups, frequency of visits, and numbers of people visiting community centers each day will help this work.

The Parks Department will use input from the public to develop options for the community centers. There will be another public meeting this spring to get input on the specific options.

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Join Fremont Place Books For Open House Goodbye

February 25th, 2011 by Sean Keeley

This weekend is the final one for Fremont Place Books. The 22-year-old local bookshop will close its door for the final time on Sunday, February 27th. But before they do, they’d like to see you stop by one last time to say goodbye, buy some books and anything else that’s not nailed down.

After 22 years we wish Fremont Place Books good-bye. Please Join Henry and staff on Sunday, February 27 from noon – 6pm for an open house.

We also ask that you help them to clean house by going and buying books, book shelves and anything that is not part of the building.

Even if you don’t want to buy anything, swing by, say hi to owner Henry Burton and wish the old Fremont mainstay a fond farewell.

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Fremont’s B.F. Day Invites You To Feel ‘Swellagant’

February 24th, 2011 by Sean Keeley

The Swellegant is almost here.

If your initial thought is, what the heck is a Swellagant, well, let me explain. Actually, let’s have the B.F. Day PTSA explain:

The Swellegant is an annual party and mini-auction event hosted by the B.F. Day PTSA. It is first and foremost an opportunity for the B.F. Day adult community to come together and socialize. Of course, we can’t pass up the opportunity to raise a little dough for the kids so they’ll be a small silent auction and a raffle that night as well.

The event takes place Saturday, March 5th from 7:00 to 11:00pm at the Fremont Arts Abbey. There will be cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, live music, a silent auction and something called a “golden raffle” which sounds way better some plain, old normal raffle.

Tickets are $40.00 per person in advance, $50.00 at the door, and all the proceeds go to funding the arts and sciences at B.F. Day. To purchase your ticket or donate an item to the silent auction, head over to the PTSA site now.

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Fremont Abbey Hosts A Moving Conversation

February 24th, 2011 by Sean Keeley

On February 25th & 26th, Fremont Abbey Arts Center will present ‘A Moving Conversation,’ its first annual movement arts event with an Audience/Artist exchange to follow each concert. Twelve of Seattle’s emerging and established choreographers will perform and join in the conversation.

The event was conceived and curated by Abbey Dance Curator, Karin Stevens. Stevens will moderate a ‘conversation’ between the choreographers at a pre-performance dinner and also at the post-performance choreographer and audience exchange that is open to the public. A Moving Conversation is part of the Abbey’s mission to be a vibrant community venue that provides a supportive space for artistic development and educational opportunities for the audience through creative events. Performances will take place in the Great Hall .

Stevens spoke with CityArts Magazine about the event, noting the intimate and rare opportunity for the performers and audience to interact:

“It’s an opportunity for the audience to be at the table as well,” Stevens commented. “But it’s not a lecture. We want it to be an exchange. We’re coming together so people can learn what goes into making a dance.”

The seasoned professionals and budding new artists who will participate in the event include: Marlo Martin, Andre Bouchard, Katy Hagelin, Victoria McConnell, Sarah Seder, Alex Martin, Freya Wormus, Keneniah Bystrom, Sarah Olds, Kristen Legg, Marissa Haga, and Markeith Wiley.

To purchase tickets to the event, visit Brown Paper Tickets. For more information, email dance AT fremontabbey dot org or visit

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Get Your Clown On, Fremont

February 24th, 2011 by Sean Keeley

Anyone else watching Portlandia? While the show’s namesake gets the brunt of the satire, the Pacific Northwest as a whole is certainly part of the joke. One of the recurring jokes is the abundance of clown colleges and the many locals who enjoy dressing us as clowns.

Well it turns out that’s not just a Portland thing. Fremont (and Seattle) folks who want a chance to strap on some clown shoes, paint their face a multitude of colors and learn the finer points of being a true clown will have their chance as well.

The clown doctor is coming to town.

Arne Zaslove is teaching a five-hour Master Class that introduces the “mindset” you need to liberate your inner clown this Saturday, Feb. 26 between 10am and 4pm at OmCulture.

Zaslove’s credentials speak for themselves:

Arne has served as a clown doctor for Cirque du Soleil (Kooza, Delirium, Corteo), as Commedia dell’ Arte consultant for The Glorious Ones, which had its New York premiere at Lincoln Center (with music and lyrics by Stephen Flaherty and Lynn Ahrens of Ragtime), and for Teatro Zinzanni in Seattle.

The class is $95 at the door or $85 pre-paid. For more information on how to get involved, call 206-920-9084.

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Solid Ground Strikes Out Hunger With Bowl-a-thon

February 24th, 2011 by Sean Keeley

Grab your favorite bowling shirt and lace up your shoes. Solid Ground is looking for teams to participate in their annual Strike Out Hunger Bowl-a-thon at West Seattle Bowl (4505 39th Ave SW) on Saturday, April 9.

The event will raise money and awareness for the group’s Food Security for Children program, which keeps Seattle-area food banks (including Ballard, Greenwood, Phinney Ridge, Lutheran and the Wallingford Family Works food banks) stocked with formula and healthy baby food for infants and toddlers.

April 1 is the deadline for teams of four to six to register. Individuals are also welcome to sign up.

For registration and pledge forms, see Each bowler who raises $200 or more in tax-deductible donations receives a special prize. Start times are at 2 p.m. and 4:30 p.m.

For more information on this event, contact Anna Ramos at 206-694-6857 or

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Fremont Wakes Up To Some Light Snow

February 24th, 2011 by Sean Keeley

Update (12pm): And so, the city of Seattle is moving on now that the snow seems to have passed us by. The Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) will continue to provide snow and ice removal operations where necessary. Snow is predicted to taper off by late afternoon with temperatures dropping overnight.

Seattle Parks and Recreation is following normal schedules and operations. Seattle Parks Child Care Winter Break Camps are operating today as scheduled. The Amy Yee Tennis Center is Open for business. Community Centers, Pools, and Environmental Learning Centers will open at their regularly scheduled times today.

Updates on city services can be found at

Update (11:30am) – The snow has returned. It’s a light dusting, nothing that seems to be sticking, but keep an eye on it nevertheless. The chilly temps are keeping some sidewalks icy.

Original – Snowpocalypse 2011 it ain’t.

Fremonsters are waking up Thursday morning to find a little bit of snow on their cars, lawns and sidewalks but that’s about it. There is a dusting up to an inch on the ground in Fremont this morning but the roads looks pretty clear.

The forecast does call for a trace to 1 inch more later today.

It’s currently 29 degrees out with a high of 35 expected, so stay snug.

Metro buses are on snow routes this morning, here’s SDOT’s first report of the day:

Most city streets are bare and wet this morning. Crews from the Seattle Department of Transportation are treating major arterial streets to guard against the formation of ice in advance of the morning commute period. Snowfall last night was highly variable around the city. Beacon Hill, southern Rainier Valley, and higher parts of West Seattle appear to have had the most snow.

To know how the highways look, you can check the latest WSDOT traffic updates, the flow map and the full set of WSDOT cameras.

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Fremont SnowWatch 2/23

February 23rd, 2011 by Sean Keeley

Update (7:00pm): How bout that hail, huh? In case you somehow missed it we got hit with a little hail storm for about 15 minutes around 5:30. After that it calmed down and now we’ve some slushy flurries. 1 to 3 inches of snow are expected overnight. And so it begins…

FYI, Seattle Public Utilities (SPU)says Thursday garbage pick-up will happen as usual so plan accordingly.

Update (2:50pm): Metro is warning that buses will be crowded this afternoon and snow routes will likely be in effect. “Metro buses will move to snow routing as travel conditions change. When buses move to snow routes, it will be announced through Transit Alerts and on the Metro Online website. Check the status for your route before you travel.”

Original: Chain the tires, salt the sidewalk, dust off the parka, clean out the bomb shelter, hide your kids, hide your wife…SNOW is coming!!!

So far, so good for Seattle and, specifically, Fremont. The white stuff isn’t supposed to begin falling until this afternoon. Even then, the heavy stuff isn’t supposed to start dropping until the evening.

Weather Service forecaster Andy Haner wants you to know it’s not going to be crazy, but it’ll be enough that you’ll want to stay off the roads tonight if possible:

“I wouldn’t call it a ‘snowpocalypse,’ but it’s not going to be a good day to work late,” Haner said.

Temperatures in the Seattle area are expected to drop into the 20s late Wednesday, making for slick, icy roads for the evening commute and the possibility of more of the same on Thursday morning.

The Seattle Department of Transportation sent 10 snowplows into North Seattle and eight plows in South Seattle and they are now in a 24-hour response plan, ready to react to any snowfall.

Seattle Public Utilities is on schedule today for garbage, recycling, and yard waste collection.

We’ll keep you posted as the snow begins to fall.

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SDOT To Begin Repaving Dexter Avenue In March

February 23rd, 2011 by Sean Keeley

The Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) is planning changes along Dexter Avenue N between Roy Street and Fremont Avenue N in 2011. This project is funded by the “Bridging the Gap” transportation levy approved by Seattle voters in November 2006 and is expected to help ease congestion caused by car, bus and bicyclist overlaps. This project will also improve the pavement condition by repaving the street.

Specifically the work is expected to:

  • Install a buffered bike lane on each side of the street
  • Remove the two-way left turn lane
  • Provide dedicated left-turn lanes at busy intersections
  • Provide dedicated load zones for businesses that need them
  • Provide in-lane bus stops to improve transit speed and reliability
  • Install dedicated bus islands
  • Install street lighting upgrades
  • Construct new and upgraded curb ramps
  • Construct sidewalk improvements
  • Install drainage upgrades

Roadwork is scheduled to begin in March and will begin just across the Fremont Bridge, spanning Fremont Avenue N (Fourth Avenue N) to McGraw Street. That phase is expected to last 2-3 months.

During construction, you can be expected to experience lane closures, left turn restrictions, pedestrian detours, parking and loading restrictions and instances of weekday and night work.

For more information on this project, visit the SDOT web site.

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History House Wants Fremont To Be Prepared

February 23rd, 2011 by Sean Keeley

There’s a lot of emergencies in life that can happen in an instant. Be it a stove fire or an earthquake, it pays to be prepared and History House wants to help Fremonsters be ready for anything.

HH has three community programs it wants you to be aware of.

1. History House has established an Emergency Preparedness Help Desk in our Gift Shop/lobby, which is stocked (or being stocked) with brochures from:

Seattle Police Dept., Seattle Fire Dept., Seattle Dept. of Emergency Operations, King County Emergency Operations, State of WA Emegency Operations, Federal Emergency Management Association (FEMA)

2. History House is hosting a Community Emergency Preparedness meeting on the last Thursday of each month at 4pm. The next meeting is this Thursday, February 24th.

3. History House, on behalf of Fremont/ Wallingford, is participating in a cutting-edge program for developing neighborhood self-reliance in times of citywide emergencies. Current participants include West Seattle, Magnolia/Queen Anne, Capital Hill, Wallingford/Fremont/Green Lake. The project is being coordinated – but not led by – the City of Seattle. This involves neighborhoods identifying their own resources and making a plan to implement during times of crisis – big or small. (Ed. Note: such as a snowstorm…ahem…)

This program is being developed because of the belief by most professionals in the field of the probability that when a citywide emergency hits… and we call 911… no one will answer the phone.

We request your consideration to participate and volunteer.

If you have any questions about the programs or want to get involved, reached out to John Nordstrand (john at historyhouse dot org).

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Firefighters Battle Fire At Fremont-Area House Tuesday Morning

February 22nd, 2011 by Sean Keeley

Firefighters were called to a fire at an abandoned house just before 7 a.m. today at 317 N.W. 41st St.

Jordan Lee, who lives behind the house at 317 NW 41st Street, told MyBallard he was walking his dog when he smelled burning plastic.

He saw light smoke coming from the abandoned house and called 911. He tells us that the house has been boarded up for years. He didn’t see anyone leaving the house, in fact he’s never seen anyone at the house, but assumes squatters were trying to keep warm last night. According to a Tweet by King5unit9, who was on the scene, “There was one man occupying the vacant home. Unfortunately, he had a few cats and only 1 will probably live.”

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City Of Seattle Snow Plan In Effect For Wednesday

February 22nd, 2011 by Sean Keeley

In preparation for a big snowfall Wednesday, the City of Seattle has activated its snow plan. Early in the morning, ten snow plows will hit the north end of the city. At 9 a.m., the Seattle Department of Transportation “will go into a full 24-hour response plan to keep roads open, buses moving and critical emergency services accessible,” Rick Sheridan of SDOT writes. More from the release:

The response plan calls for deploying 30 trucks with plows, which will be prepositioned throughout the city in key locations such as elevated structures and certain trouble spots on major arterials. The department starting pre-treating major roadways with salt brine this afternoon in preparation for the storm. Additional details concerning SDOT’s response will be forthcoming as more information about the impending storm becomes available.

SDOT also reminds property owners that they are responsible for the sidewalks in front of their properties.

Mayor Mike McGinn says this storm could be like that of November 22, 2010. “Because Wednesday afternoon’s commute is expected to be difficult,” McGinn writes in a statement, “It may be a good day to work an alternate shift, telecommute or make other travel arrangements if possible.”

Metro Transit is also urging passengers to be prepared for the snow.

Wednesday’s snowfall may start out light in some areas, but transit users should plan ahead for bus trips that could be disrupted, delayed, and on snow routing. Even though weather in the morning may not be bad in your area, you should leave from a bus stop or park-and-ride that also has service when buses are on snow routes in case travel conditions deteriorate by the afternoon commute.

Click here for more on Metro’s snow plans.

For up-to-date information on the City’s response and roadway conditions, please visit: Motorists can also check on current traffic conditions and roadway images on SDOT’s Traveler’s Map at:

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President’s Day, Fremont-Style

February 22nd, 2011 by Sean Keeley

I was walking around the neighborhood on President’s Day when I came across this Fremont window decoration at 41st and Fremont and had to share:

Fremont: Land of Lincoln

Still haven’t found the Warren G. Harding window display, but I’m looking.

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34th Street Construction Update

February 18th, 2011 by Sean Keeley

Seattle City Light has an update for us on the construction that’s taking place on 34th Street.

In the next week the contractor will continue excavating and installing duct bank easterly from Woodland Park Avenue N. to Stone Way N. South curb and sidewalk restoration will begin from a point 70 feet west of Albion Place N. easterly toward Stone Way. N. Paving in the project area along Woodland Park Avenue N. is projected for the first week in March.

SCL has put a lot of your suggestions into practice to make it a little easier when driving through the construction. That said, if you can find an adequate detour for yourself, especially during high-traffic times, it’s worth the effort. The project is still expected to run through mid-March, we’ll let you know of any further updates.

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Fremont News, Notes, Happenings & Whatnot 2/18

February 18th, 2011 by Sean Keeley

Some news and items of interest for Fremonsters…

  • The City of Seattle’s North Recycling and Disposal Station in the Fremont/Wallingford area and the South Recycling and Disposal Station in the South Park area will be open on Monday, Feb. 21, during their regular business hours: 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
  • A woman and daughter were struck by a car earlier this week at 46th and Phinney.
  • Tuesday, February 22, 2011 is National Spay Day. PAWS will offer low-cost spay and neuter surgeries at participating shelters and locations.
  • You’ve only got a few hours left for this deal…spend $10 to get a frosty pint, a growler glass, and a growler of Universale Pale Ale or Interurban IPA from Fremont Brewing, a $19 value.

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