The Kirkland Downtown Association and Chamber of Commerce, in partnership with Nytec, are holding a Gala Fish Frolic Auction at the Woodmark Hotel on Thursday, Sept 25th from 5:30-9pm. This is a fundraiser to support community events throughout the year, the flowerpots in downtown Kirkland, and a portion of the proceeds also benefits Lake WA Schools Foundation.
Tickets are $100 per person and can be purchased here. But hurry because time is running out! Look how cool these fish are that have been created by local artists and you will be bidding on. Love the one (photo above) by Elizabeth Kincaid with the big red lips titled "Lovers in the Night." There will be a raffle, door prizes, dinner, dessert, drink tickets, music- all the components for a fun party... except your friends- so throw on a cocktail dress and bring them too! ~j
DonorsChoose.org is a crowd-funding nonprofit website where teachers can post things they need most for their classroom, and donors can support their favorite projects. It was started by a teacher and the site tells a really interesting story of their history. And thanks to the awesomeness of this site and the over-the-top generosity of Google, on Monday 9/15, they unveiled a big surprise-- Google is going to fund EVERY SINGLE CLASSROOM PROJECT in King, Pierce and Snohomish Counties. Yep, Kirkland- that means us! Yipppeeeee!! I hope our teachers have been using this site. Estimates are that this will be approximately $315,000 in paper, pencils, books, tablets, instruments, field trips and other supplies.
The surprise announcement was made at Highland Park Elementary School in Seattle (photo). Those are some happy faces! Way to show the (local) love, Google!
WHAT IS UP with the property value notices that just came out?!?! Is this happening to you too? Ours went up 20% from last year, which nearly made me spill my wine coffee. I've heard lots of other residents squawking in disbelief also. One Kirkland friend said her assessment is 100% higher than last year (with no changes or improvements to land/dwelling). The real estate market is picking back up, but not THAT fast.
I haven't called their office yet, but it sounds like to appeal your evaluation you need to act quickly. July 1, 2014 or 60 days from the mailing date on the postcard....clearly the latter in my case. You can also contact the King County Assessor at 206-296-7300 firstname.lastname@example.org or the King Co Board of Equalization 206-696-3496. Please share your story in the comments if you have experienced a tax-induced heart attack or been through the appeals process.
Oktoberfest in October? NO! Let's expedite this beer-drinking celebration to Sept 26-28th in downtown Kirkland. Marina Park will transform into a Bavarian village with games, costumes, contests, beer, brats and undoubtedly, a weiner dog contest. There is also a Kirkland "Morganfahrt" Oktoberfest 5K on Sunday at 9am, so you can burn a few calories before you fill your stein. $35 for the run gets you into the Biergarten afterwards, if you are 21, of course.
Tickets and proof of age is are required at the authentic Muchen-style Biergarten which is open the following hours:
Friday, September 26 -- 4:00 PM - 11:00 PM* (21+ Only)
Saturday, September 27 -- 11:00 AM - 11:00 PM* (21+ Only)
Sunday, September 28 -- 10:30 AM - 6:00 PM** (21+ in Biergarten. 5K Run and Wiener Dog Races are all ages)
I had the pleasure of bumping into the fun and friendly owners of the new Peruvian kitchen, Wyraqocha, which is getting ready to open in the next few weeks at 110 Central Way. Cyndy Almonte is the General Manager and Lia Horna is the Executive Chef (photo). Cyndy is MY PEOPLE, having moved here from New Jersey to start this joint venture with her BFF, Lia. "What IS Peruvian food?" I wondered. Sounds like we are about to find out that it is a fusion of many kinds of food and mostly tapas (small bites so you can taste many things). The menu is still being finalized so they can be sure to find the freshest local ingredients for all of their dishes.
The interior of the restaurant is a slate gray with stone on the wall and dark hardwoods. Things have been slowed down with a few different contractors but they are all on track now. A family member with some super awesome artistry skills flew in for a weekend to paint the designs on their walls (photo). I'm looking forward to a)my kids going back to school so that b)I have some free time to have lunch with a friend in this cool new spot. ~j
I can't say this outloud without singing the rest... Hey Baby! Hey Baby! Hey! Just like the Gwen Stefani song but I don't think this is what she was singing about (or maybe she was?). Hey Baby! is a new 3D/4D ultrasound imaging facility in Kirkland, 8556 122nd Ave NE, Ste A2, designed to enable pregnant women to capture some amazing images of their babies in utero. It's by appointment only- and this is NOT instead of diagnostic images with your doctor. Think of it as more of your baby's first portraits. And these are always a little bit freaky because you can actually kinda see what your kid is going to look like in a 3D/4D image. Sometimes it's a face only a mother can love.
My first pregnancy was twins so I was spoiled with lots of ultrasounds and monitoring ( and poking and prodding and gestational diabetes but that's another story, LOL). I didn't realize that most moms-to-be only get to see their little peanuts on the screen once or twice until Brady came along. Hey Baby! is a clever solution for anxious or curious family members. It would also be a great baby shower gift that allows access to amazing technology for an affordable price ($99-219 depending on package). Call for an appointment or questions: 844-777-BABY. Gift cards are also available. ~j
It's time! It's time! Summerfest is here!
Even though our favorite downtown cow is wearing a hot-pink diaper to celebrate the occasion, this is not your dress code (although I wouldn't stop you). The event runs Aug 8-10 in Marina Park and you can find all the details here. Plenty of fun for everyone so you should hustle on down there for music, beer/wine gardens, art, food trucks, vendors, activities, rides and cultural displays. This is not just for the adults, here's a list of the kids happenings.
KIRKLAND SUMMERFEST KIDS STUFF
Radio Disney, sparkle tattoos, balloon twister, stilt walker, library bookmobile, face painter, Maxmobile (adoptable animals), fly fishing demo(Sat. 12-6), roaming Star Wars characters, kids fitness course, Ivivva yoga demo (Sun. 11:00), huge sand pile and toys at the beach, kids rides: obstacle course, robo surfer, bouncy house, big slide, robotics, young artists’ exhibition, cardboard boat regatta(Sat. 3:00), free 1 ½ hour painting classes in front of Volterra restaurant, dog fashion show, Rotary Duck Dash ( Sun. 2:30), Search and Rescue (Sat. 3:30), dragon boat races, Touch a Truck: police car, fire truck, Sno-King Zamboni, Smith Brothers milk truck, Rapid Ride bus, hydroplanes, MAC tow truck, Northshore Utility district truck and rehydration station, Kenworth Seahawk truck, limousine, RV, Ford Tonka truck, US Marine vehicle and more.
KIDS THINGS ARE ON SATURDAY, AUGUST 9 and SUNDAY, AUGUST 10
from 11:00 am- 6:00 pm
We finally meandered up to "The Market St," at 1720 Market St., to check out their new look and menu which has departed from the previous owner's Asian Wok offerings (Amen). A fresh coat of paint and getting rid of the giant fish tanks were definitely a step in the right direction. If only they had ousted the red pleather rolling chairs I might not be having flashbacks of what it used to be. The food was definitely much improved. The menu offers a variety of crowd pleasers: steak/burgers/sandwiches/fish/soup/salad all priced between $8-20. Steve got the pork shoulder which was really good and beautifully presented (photo). I couldn't stop stealing the delicious shoestring fries from my friend's plate, in between bites of my cobb salad which had lots of pork, avocado and hard boiled egg on top. Our waitress was very personable and helpful with the menu and our drinks were stiff, a signature trademark of the attached bar which keeps a steady flow of regulars.
Overall, this is a quaint little casual neighborhood spot that locals will keep coming back to. Restaurant hours are Sun/Mon 4-9pm, Tues-Sat 4-10pm. The bar is open until the weeeee hours of the morning when I am dreaming about waterskiing. Sun/Mon til 12am and Tues-Sat til 2am. 425-827-4117. ~j
On Monday July 28th, Poppinjay's at Carillon Point is sharing their 27th birthday with us by honoring 1987 prices. What a way to celebrate! You can have about 6 cups of coffee that day instead of your one Starbucks latte. Soup is .95, soup/sandwich is $3.55, coffee .50, and a chinese chicken salad is $4.25. Now if only we could buy our gas at .89/gallon again! :-)
What were YOU doing in 1987? I was a freshman in high school in Edison, New Jersey. My goal in life was to make the Varsity softball team and be able to afford enough Stiff Stuff hairspray to keep my bangs at least 4 inches high. I was listening to Bon Jovi and anxiously awaiting the day my braces came off and my perm grew out so I could blossom into an obnoxious potty-mouthed teen and capture the attention of some boy wearing Old Spice and driving an IROC. There you have it. Not my favorite years....we've come so far. Thanks for sticking with us, Poppinjay's. Happy Birthday! ~j
Oh look- another restaurant is going to try its luck at 89 Kirkland Ave (previous location of Top Shelf, that Greek place, Marina Park Grill, and a few others that have slipped my mind). Fingers are crossed that the Watercress Vietnamese Bistro is what you guys have been dreaming about for this spot (who doesn't love a good bowl of Pho?). This appear to be their second location. The other is in Seattle on Rainier and also includes a pool hall.
I just met General Manager, David Fruchter, who is excited to let us know HomeGrown (101 Lake St.) will officially be opening on July 22nd (soft opening the 21st). Love what they've done with the space. White subway tiles, reclaimed wood everywhere, stainless steel and lots of light in this airy spot with a farmhouse feel. Paper is off the windows so take a peek. Be ready for casual local, organic food- menus here. ~j
The much anticipated opening for Lady Yum is here!! Get yourself ready for some macarons and mischief. You'll feel like you're in a French Bakery with the exposed brick, dark hardwoods, vintage chandeliers and sweet deliciousness of the colorful macarons. Owner Megan Gordon is over-the-moon with how the place turned out.... "I can't believe it's mine!" she said, after many months of planning and hard work.
The macaron flavors were all tempting-- lemon blueberry (my daughter Sydney's fave), toasted coconut (Megan's fave), Zoka mocha (mine), salted caramel, orange creme, maple bacon, strawberry, chocolate, and chocolate mint to name a few. All were the perfect consistency of light crackle on the outside and a chewy delight when you bite into it. The good news is they're only 100 calories each. The bad news is it's really tough not to eat 5 of them!
There's plenty of cafe style seating where you can sit and enjoy your beautiful treat. Hop on down to 111 Lake Street (old Ce Fiore site) and let us know YOUR favorite flavor! Hours are Tues- Sat 10-11, Sun 10-8, Closed MON. ~j
<--brothers Sam & Andy (mom would be proud)
If you like playing golf and drinking local beers, which encompasses an estimated 87% of the male population, Flatstick Pub is going to be your new go-to hot-spot in Kirkland. Brothers Sam and Andy Largent opened this new craft beer bar and indoor mini golf course on June 1st at 15 Lake St. S (inbetween Vovina and The Grape Choice). Sam has wanted to open a beer bar for a while, and liked the idea of offering something to do as well. After a little research, Flatstick Pub was born (he didn't have to twist his brother's arm to join him!). From the looks of this place on a Friday night, I think they nailed it.
After wiggling past gaggles of people half my age, the first thing I noticed was the bright display of the 'Digital Pour' Menu over the commanding line-up of 24 taps of Washington beers. The electronic menu tells you the name and type of beer, where it's from, % of alcohol, the price (most are $5.50), and how full the keg is. The red color indicates that a keg is almost tapped out, and the person who gets the last pour on that one gets to pick what will come up next. You can also look on their website to see what they are pouring right now-whoa... real-time beer monitoring! And just for fun, they also have their twitter feed up on the menu board. Can't find a babysitter for your pooch? No problem, bring 'em along, dogs are welcome in the pub area. If you and your dog and your drafts get hungry, they carry local packaged sandwiches, salads and wraps from Molly's and many local restaurants deliver to this location. Patio seating will be coming soon.
Flatstick, which is another name for putter, is a sprawling 3,000 square feet. The entire back half is a custom-made 9-hole mini golf course that Andy designed and his neighbor built. Let me tell ya, these holes are NOT easy. Even after a few beers, navigating through water features, mazes and going under kegs is no small challenge. I love the custom mural on the back wall of the old Kirkland ferry that gives you the illusion of golfing on the Lake Washington. The course is $6/per person and you can usually get around two times in an hour. Other fun things to expect from these guys? Trivia night, brewer's night, random drawings for Seahawks tickets, and of course....corporate events. This would be a great spot to rent out for a birthday party or team building event. They are even working on changing their licensing so that they can host children's parties soon too. Like them on Facebook to stay in the know.
Hours at Flatstick Pub are weekdays noon to midnight, and Saturday noon to 1:30am. Fun, casual, good young energy abounds in this clever new concept. Look for them at Kirkland Uncorked (THIS WEEKEND!!) and as a sponsor for Kirkland Summerfest (Aug 8-10) this year. 425-242-1618, email@example.com . ~j
I went out of town for a little bit and came back and hardly have time to write about all of the new Kirkland happenings. Patience, my friends. I'm trying to keep up. Let's start with Pike St. Press in the old 'Sweet & Sassy' space next to Bikini Beach at 92 Kirkland Ave. Fab. Just think of thick creamy papers on a custom letter press- custom coasters, tags, announcements, invites and business cards. No templates, this is the real deal. Sean Brown, born and raised in Kirkland and whom also started their first location on Pike St is excited to be on the eastside doing what he knows how to do. firstname.lastname@example.org
Check out this 1905 printing press in the window. This is where Sean creates cards like these (above). He even helped create Milagro's first menu. Everything is hand-crafted and custom, with a fun spattering of cards and notebooks and journals to choose from in his storefront- stamps too. Def pop in to say hello and see what's up at Pike St Press.~j
I was driving past our downtown Kirkland "Smokin Hot Smoke Shop" today and couldn't help but notice their giant banner announcing a FREE TRIAL OFFER for a vaporizer and e-cigarette. Well, isn't that super??! Somehow this just rubs me the wrong way. But I can't put my finger on it. And I'm sure some of you are going to go berserk on me when you read this. But I also think some of you feel the weird vibe this sign creates too.
I know they have the same right as anyone to advertise their business...does it feel like they're encouraging the general public to smoke (legal, I realize...)? Maybe next door we could open a porn shop and your first DVD is free? Or a gun store offering free bullets? Same strange corner of the universe perhaps- Compelling to some, but offensive to others? Maybe it's the location I can't wrap my brain around. I dunno. Go ahead, comment. I'll brace myself (probably while you are all rushing out to get your free vaporizers....) ~j
KIRKLAND NEEDS YOU!!!
VOLUNTEER TO HELP WITH KIRKLAND’S 4TH OF JULY
Folks, we are down to the last few days and still have unfilled positions.
Please Please Please help make this annual event just as special as it always is. Sometimes it takes the whole darn village!
Follow this link and sign up. Call with Questions Penny 425-765-5576 or Barbie 425-766-6982
And if you can't do any of those jobs....
Do you want to walk IN the parade? The Summerfest entry in the 4th of July parade could use about 20 people to march with them- kids, friends, neighbors, parents, pets-they need ya! They are meeting at 10am and the parade starts at 12 (after the kids parade at 11:30). Done by 1pm. Call Sue if you can do it- 425-827-6870 or email her at email@example.com. Always fun to see the parade from the 'other side'. Happy Fourth!
Here is the schedule of events for the whole day. I heard a rumor that the parade is going in the opposite direction this year???
It's back! This program is a win for everyone. Simplicity Decor and Simplicity ABC will partner with you and your favorite charity to raise money at their downtown storefronts by selling lemonade to the thirsty patrons of Kirkland. My kids LOVE doing this- and have had a successful stand in the past for Seattle Children's Hospital. Choose whatever has meaning for you and make it special. Kids really dig setting up their own little 'shop' on the sidewalk and working for tips that go straight to a worthy cause. Ten percent of Simplicity Decor/ABC's proceeds for that day will also go towards your charity. Ka-ching!
If you'd like to sign up for a day that you (and your kiddos) can set up shop, email "A" for an application here. They are due by July 11th. Great sales/interpersonal/life skills for the kids, your charity benefits, and so do some favorite downtown local businesses. Tell us when you'll be there, I'm getting thirsty already...~j
The rumors are true. Top Pot is coming to Juanita Village! This little shopping center seems to be a magnet for coffee drinkers and doughnut eaters (so I'll see you there, right?). No intel on timing yet, so you'll have to just salivate for now. ~j
Went for a little jog through Juanita Beach Park today, and I had forgotten about the Juanita Friday Market. What a fun surprise, and unexpected reason to slow my pace down to a walk. The usual suspects are there (flowers, popcorn, fruit/vegs) and I also noticed some I haven't seen before (tea stand, soaps/fun smell-good things for kids, doggie products)- worth checking out! Every Fri from 3-7 (except 7/4) And, of course there's the Weds Market also every week, at Marina Park 2-7.
Other fun summertime things in the que:
The Fourth of July Celebration- 7/4/14
Kirkland Car Show- 7/27/14
Wyraqocha Peruvian Kitchen- seems like we've been waiting a long time for this one at 110 Central, but they just put their 'real' sign up the other day so things must be moving forward. You can get an idea of what they've been up to on their FB page. Now, can you say Wyraqocha 5 times fast?
Kirkland iRepair- in the old Asher location at 13 Central, Kirkland iRepair specializes in repairing all Apple products (iPhone, iPad,iPod, MacBook). There is some very green paint up on the walls now. And even more green stickers/signage went up today after this photo was taken. It doesn't even matter that they aren't open yet, you can make an appt on their website or call 425-753-3557. I like that their site has tabs for each product and lists pricing and turnaround times for specific repairs.
Canvas Paint & Sip Studio re-lo- Canvas has their sign on the empty retail space next to Kathy Evans at 140 Central Way (where the weird Piroshky drugstore used to be). Looks like a little expansion perhaps??
Let me explain-I wrote a post back in Sept about a homeless man named Steve that often stands at the corner of 100th and 116th (near Columbia Athletic Club). A few people have mentioned that it helped them take notice or give a wave and a smile, maybe a buck for coffee. And it sounds like many of you have reached out also. My kids still get excited every time they see Steve, and willingly surrender their unopened food/drinks out the window if we happen to catch the red light.
It gave me warm fuzzies to get this update from a reader. A sort of full circle scenario:blogger->reader->subject->reader->blogger. Cause, believe it or not, I don't do this gig for the whopping paycheck or employee benefits. It's because of the all of the awesome people in this city and our common interests as a community- all inter-connected. Check your garage, please. You guys rock. (poor Steve might get 17 pairs of boots now)...
Here is the recent note from a reader (thank you, Ginny, for sharing):
I'm on the #255 bus heading downtown & saw Steve. Ever since your column, I've stopped occasionally. I greeted him = I'm the lady who waves hello from across the street on my walk. Your name/ column came up. Steve always wanted to tell you how much he appreciated your kind words - and the day you & the girls stopped by to chat.
So, here he is:
"Thank you! Apparently you have some wonderful followers on your weblog who have stopped. I really appreciate it. God Bless You.
I'm no longer homeless. I live in an apartment downtown Seattle. I'm keeping it real and trying to make it happen. There are some really good people out there and I just want to thank them.
PS Anybody out there with a size 10 1/2 work boot? I'm usually @ 116th corner 11:30am -1:30 pm several days a week.
Chad Waldher is excited to open a new restaurant/bar right in the heart of downtown Kirkland. Get ready for Bottle and Bull coming to 105 Lake St (in the previous Tervelli UltraLounge spot). Executive chef, Stephen Paulsen, will help you eat and drink your way through the places that Ernest Hemingway loved to travel: Havana, Paris, Florence, Pamplona (where he discovered his love of bullfighting) and more. The ever-changing menu will be focused on farm-to-table and locally sourced products.
They are busy getting ready and hoping for an August opening. Chad also owns Marcy's Bar & Lounge in Walla Walla. You can stay updated on the Bottle and Bull's progress by following their Facebook page. ~j
The Kirkland Wednesday Market will be kicking off the 2014 season on Weds June 4th from 2-7 at Marina Park. It runs through Sept 24th this year. Seasonal fruits and vegetables will abound along with jewelry and crafts from local artisans mixed in. Lots of vendors are getting ready for this awesome weekly event, which is always a great way to enjoy a waterfront park and support local farmers. If you'd like to volunteer at the market this year, click here to have them contact you.
I had aspirations of writing a really moving Mother's Day blog post. Because I'm basically a full-time mom, and it would be fair to assume I'm well-equipped to have some really motivating words on the subject. But, as usual, I'm behind on my to-do list. So you're going to get a random list of things that come flying off of the top of my head, but I kinda wanted to set these thoughts free. They may or may not be more interesting than the fact that "Ivy" is coming to Paisley's Cupboard old location and a "Homegrown Sustainable Sandwich Shop" is coming to the old Tully's spot on Lake St. Those are just teasers to posts that I will add to said to-do list.
So here are a few random true stories that you can file into the good mom or bad mom category in your head. No need to speak aloud. I don't need lectures. I can laugh (and frown and sneer) at myself...and so here are my confessions of a mother...feel free to add your own to make me feel better.
-I can barely get all of my kids where they need to be. By the time I have driven them to all of their sports and circle back to watch one actually play in a game, I always seem to have *just* missed the home run or the 3 amazing strikeouts my kid pitched that inning. sigh.
-I drove my daughter all the way to violin lessons this morning with the emergency brake on. Didn't realize it til I got home.
-Thank goodness my husband can cook (love you honey!!) because I know how to open wine.
-My oldest kids are in 5th grade and I occasionally have to check the internet to clarify answers to their homework.
-I have no idea why I am spending hours collecting up my stuff for a garage sale this weekend where I'll probably make $50 (Market Neighborhood G-Sale, THIS Sat 5/17 9-2pm)
-I'm not sure if it is a woman/hormone thing or too much wine or early-onset dementia but my brain can no longer hold information. It has just given up. Maxed out. Maybe I need to buy more Mega bites? But I can tell you plenty of useless info from my childhood, but not how many outs there are at a softball game I am coaching. Little chunks or constantly changing information vaporize immediately (names especially)..it doesn't mean I love ya any less.
-Why does the UPS man always need me to sign for a package when I'm not home?
-Sometimes I get a little bit sad that my daughters will be going to Middle School next year. This is when the 'real' world stuff is going to start. I hope we've prepared them well.
-My underwear are on inside-out. They really are. I had 30 minutes to get ready today, and so I thought I was pretty awesome since I got my hair dried AND my outfit matched. Clearly I didn't get everything in the right place but at least only I knew...........until now.
-All women should read "Lean In," - the impact it has on each individual will vary but at the very least it should make you think. I have some ideas I want to send Sheryl Sandberg (whom I thank for being brave enough to write it). Please remind me to add those to my to-do list.
-Why is there ALWAYS toothpaste in the sink? How could so little make it down the drain?
- Moms would be awesome inventors if we had more time. They are like spools of thoughts in the back of my brain. I think " I should call XYZ company and tell them this idea that would make everyone want to buy their product," and then I scurry along to my next everyday menial task.
-Such as....Why does Facebook not have a feature where you can have 'carpool' friends that you track on GPS -people you trust with your children and are going to the same baseball field and gymnastics spot that you are? Imagine how much of the ozone layer we could preserve.
-Pet peeves: whistling, messy counters, your kids.
-I got a pit in my stomach this morning when I saw 4 middle school boys walking across a Market St. crosswalk-- all with their faces in their phones. Nobody even looked up. Birds? Spring air? Sunshine?
-I still sniff my kids. I mean like their skin/their cheeks in the morning- don't you love that smell? I make sure to take deep breaths so they go straight to my heart and can collect there for when they won't let me do that anymore.
That's enough for now. Alway fun to end with a photo.
<-what kind of mom doesn't have a recent photo of her whole family?! ugh. There's a kid missing here and I can't cut/paste him in. And the rest of us look like a bunch of rodeo clowns (it was a TX-themed party, in our defense).
Next post will be back to our regular programming ;-)
MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMacarons! Yum. That's Lady Yum to you. Steve and I experienced these beautifully delicious little treasures in Paris recently. And now there will be a Kirkland shop dedicated to their superiority on the sweet tooth food chain. But not without a clever ask of our community for support in making their dream a reality. Megan Gordon and Shan Foisy have secured the old CeFiore location on Lake St. for Lady Yum and can't wait to share their creative macaron flavors with you. And look at the beautiful packaging too. Did I mention they are about 95 calories each? You could skip breakfast and have five. :-)
Lady Yum has a kickstarter page that has already raised $12,000 in its first 18 hours. They are trying to raise $25K before May 30th. Learn about their history, plan and vision- warning- you may shed an inspirational tear when watching the video. Do you love macarons? Better help a girl out- you could even make up your own flavor. This is how dreams are made, my friends. Opening is slated for June/July time-frame. Love the updates/photos on their Facebook page too.
While the rest of us are pulling our boats out of storage, hitting the car-wash or heading to a patio for happy hour on this sunny 84 degree day in Seattle, SleepCountry USA has their employees doing volunteer park restoration. There are about 550 volunteers all over Seattle right now. As part of their four day corporate conference, one day is dedicated to getting out into their communities and giving back with various types of volunteer work. I spotted about 30 helpers down at Juanita Bay Park, with the guidance of the City of Kirkland Parks Dept, sweating bullets over some serious restoration efforts. They looked fearless with wheelbarrows, mulch and many gloved hands. Big shout-out to the SleepCountry crew! Thank you for selflessly surrendering yourselves on one of the two sunniest days we've had so far this year. You're the best! ~j
What could make you feel better than volunteering to clean up your downtown at 8:30 this Saturday morning? Well, I guess I could think of a few things, but I'll keep this one toward the top of the list for the sake of community spirit AND earning a Volunteer Rewards Card. That's right. Your hours of devotion to this city will no longer fly under the radar. And for this clean sweep event, you will earn double hours for your time that can be redeemed for discounts and special offers from local participating merchants. It's kinda like a Kirkland Superstar Card. Priceless.
So wake up, drink some coffee, and put on some crappy clothes (it's not often that I recommend that). Then grab your rake, shovel, dustpan, broom, gloves and head down to the Park Lane Starbucks. Drink some more coffee. Have a treat. Then get to work and help make our streets downtown shine. Weeds, dust, garbage and winter crud will all be miraculously scrubbed free by the hands of awesome volunteers like you that take pride in our city and put in the work that makes us shine. RSVP to Barbie Collins Young at firstname.lastname@example.org or 425-766-6982. ~j
Do you put slippers on your dog's paws when you walk in the rain or kiss him on the lips and then pretend like nobody saw you? Do you let your dog sleep on your bed? Then I have got a great show I think you are going to enjoy.
The Olate Dogs, the 2012 winners of NBC's "America's Got Talent," will be performing in Kirkland in early May. There are a few different ways you can have the opportunity to behold this amazing gaggle of rescue dogs that do tricks such as jumping rope, riding scooters and doing backflips, all difficult feats for most humans. Led by Richard and Nicholas Olate, these pooches pack a punch for an entertaining and high energy performance. Go check 'em out:
-The Kirkland Chamber of Commerce 24th Annual Auction Gala, which they are appropriately calling "Raise Your Paw" on Fri May 9th at the Kirkland Performance Center from 6-10pm. TIckets are $100/person or $150/couple and you will be treated to a glamorous evening with wine and hors d'oeuvres from Trellis, with many hard-to-resist auction items. You can buy tickets online here or call the Chamber Office at 425-822-7066.
-On May 10th at 10am the Olate Dogs will be in Marina Park to greet our Kirkland community.
That's right, it's time to do some egg hunting this weekend. Thank you to the Kiwanis Club of Kirkland for sponsoring this favorite event on Easter Sunday 4/20 at 1:30pm SHARP at Peter Kirk Park. You're smart to arrive early to find your appropriate age group and hunting area. But fear not, plenty of chocolate eggs will abound for all.
If you are an avid egg-hunt hopper, here's a site that tells you where to find other Easter egg hunts in WA too. Happy hopping! ~j
The Kirkland Art Walk is back! And it's going to be an extra special one on Friday April 11th because an additional 16 businesses are hosting local artists that night. The Howard/Mandville Gallery, Parklane Gallery and the Kirkland Art Center Store in Park Place are also main-stays for this event. And, you can win $100 downtown shopping prize- just get your card punched at 10 of the exhibits and be entered to win. Ask about it at any of the participating shops that are displaying the Kirkland Art Walk Poster (above) in their window. Or maybe you're a budding artist that would like to participate? Email email@example.com for details. ~j
Seattle Thread Company is going to be celebrating their ONE YEAR anniversary this Saturday 4/5 from 6-9 pm. STC is a small men's fashion business that carries the latest and highest quality in clothing, shoes, accessories, sport coats, formal wear and gifts at competitive prices. Go congratulate them on their big day and check out what's in for spring. They are located at 9 Lake St.
What happened at the auction to raise funds for the 4th of July? Welllllllll, the Rabuchins bought bunch of wine but that's not really newsworthy. The final numbers aren't tallied but rumor has it you all brought in about $8,000 towards the fireworks. Nice work, Kirkland supporters! But don't exhale yet- the 4th of July planners still need another $45K or so to make this July really sparkle. If you, your business, your second cousins, or anyone you know loves this annual event, it's never too late to donate. You can email firstname.lastname@example.org and she will get it all figured out for you.
The eagle has landed! If you have ever wanted to see Bald Eagles nesting, now is your chance. You could even be lucky enough to see a new eaglet or two later this month. I don't know why the word 'eaglet' makes me giggle? The Eastside Audubon will be at Heritage Park with their high powered spotting scopes and you are invited to join. Here are the dates: 4/6, 4/27, 5/25, 6/29, 7/4, 7/27 and all times are 9-11am EXCEPT 7/4 which is all day. Happy birding! ~j
The whole Rabuchin family ventured out to try recreational tree climbing this past Sunday (yes, the beautiful 55 degree day!) with Katie Oakley of Tree Time L.L.C. Did you even know there was such a thing? This is not the way you traditionally think of tree climbing (like a squirrel scurrying up some branches), this is getting harnessed in and being suspended from a rope while inch-worming your way up a magnificent oak. Our kids (11,11, and 9) seemed to be perfect ages to join in this activity. They were able to follow the simple directions and delight in their 50 foot ascent to the upper canopy of the tree. The kids favorite part was the canvas hammock perched in the tree that they climbed over and into and they enjoyed a snack and took in the scenery. My favorite part was laughing at Steve because the kids figured it out more quickly than he did. Katie does a great job of verbally walking each climber through the steps and giving suggestions of how to maneuver in the tree once you get up in there. We didn't have to bring any equipment. Helmets and harnesses were provided and fitted when we arrived. I borrowed a pair of gloves which was really helpful for my (soft ladylike?? ha) hands on the ropes.
Are you scared? Don't be. In over 30 years of this method of tree climbing there have been zero accidents. Even if you have a fear of heights, it's very serene and a slow moving process where you are mostly looking upwards. Katie (photo), who has a UW degree in Ecology and multiple certifications from Tree Climbing Planet, leads her climbs at a special arborist-approved tree in Marymoor Park in Redmond. She's a longtime Kirkland swimming instructor at Angelfish Swimming, so was hopeful to stay in Kirkland. But when she approached the city with her plan, they weren't interested. Maybe if enough Kirklanders love it as much as she does, there could be some future tree climbing at Juanita Bay Park? Sounds like there are a few perfect trees there. ;-)
A typical climb takes 1.5 hrs and she offers different dates for scheduled climbs, so you just schedule a time that works for you. On our day, she was set up to accomodate 4 climbers at a time. The fee is $25/climber or she also does private parties. It was gorgeous out when we went, but you can climb rain or shine. $1 parking was easy just across the street. Upcoming climbing dates (helloooooo Earth Day!!) are on Tree Time's website. Questions??? 206-948-9935 or email@example.com. See you at the top? ~j
If the Sotheby's was trying to be a tempting place that we wouldn't be able to walk by without stopping in for a glass of wine...it's working! Nice job - total northwest swanky Kirkland style real estate office. Here's the scoop on what they're doing. Stop in to this Delille location Mon-Thurs 11-7 and Sat/Sun 11-9.
And then check out the pics of Asher's new digs across the hall from Sotheby's. They moved from Central Way to Lake St. for the location/exposure and more space. Love that they have incorporated more 'man gifts' and other accessory type soaps and things for when you're not quite ready to buy your guy a plaid shirt.
Lucky for us there are some well-informed Kirklanders that realize we need to start thinking about (and fund-raising for) our 4th of July festivities. Thank you, oh smart and powerful ones. Obviously, it can't happen without volunteers and some dollars. So let's start with the dollars. We'll bug you to volunteer later. ;-)
What: 2014 Kirkland 4th of July Auction
When: THIS Sat 3/22/14
6pm Auction, 7pm dinner, 8pm auction closes, 9pm live music
Where: Kirkland's Fraternal Order of Eagles, where else??
258 Central Way, Kirkland
Why: so we can enjoy an awesome parade and fireworks this year
How: $20 ticket includes light 'celebration dinner' by Peter Mangouras from George's
Who: you (duh)- and all of your friends too
For more info or to just donate some cash if you are deathly afraid of human interaction or too lazy to go or its a full moon or whatever, you can call 425-765-5576. ~j
In case you were lost, now you can be "Found." But I should warn you that you may get lost again in the labyrinth of treasured consignments at Found Interiors, which just opened last Friday at 706 Market St (next to Haystack Antiques) Ann Kenney moved her Seattle store to the eastside and is already cycling high end quality furniture in and out of her shop at a rapid rate. This concept is much like that of Blooming Home, which used to be next door years ago. Consignments are sold for a 50/50 split and kept for 90 days, so inventory is constantly changing- and is also updated on their website here. You'll find 50-75% off of retail prices on popular brands like Restoration Hardware, Pottery Barn, Thomasville and many more. Grab a friend and go.
You'll love Ann, she's super down to earth and will help you find your gems or sell them. Check back at Found often, you never know what you might be missing ;-) Hours are Tues- Sat 11-6 and Sun 11-5. 425-968-5420 or firstname.lastname@example.org.~j
How...lucky...are....we... when it's date night Weds and ALSO the opening night of Isarn Thai Soul Kitchen at 170 Lake St. S (425-298-4429). Yahoo- jackpot! First, you should know that Steve said I could quote him (rarity). "Out of all the new restaurants we've tried around town lately, this one's my favorite!" he said with a smile as he ordered his second hand-crafted whiskey drink. My lychee martini was amazing also- it would have been too easy to drink 4 of them. Don't worry, I didn't. LOL.
It was a 60 degree evening, the sun was out and Kirklanders didn't hesitate to fill the tables while the big glass doors to the sidewalk were open. Great cozy, warm, modern Asian feel inside- lots of wood, leather and glass. We sat at the bar and enjoyed the chicken/tomato dip appetizer , followed by the ribs and minced lamb with basil (photos) and a side of veggies ( kale, broccoli, cauliflower was a nice combo). It was all excellent- a great variety of flavors and the ribs were perfectly cooked. And what a refreshing surprise to easily be able to avoid the rice/fried stuff and still have a delicious and filling meal. I can't wait to go back and try the salty crab papaya salad and a curry. Also tempting was the Hat Yai Fried Chicken which is southern thai fried chicken topped with fried garlic which is a popular street dish that is well-known in many areas of Thailand. Our bartender was both friendly and professional- it was fun watching him carefully create the interesting drink menu items.
After all was going oh-so-well, the best part wasn't until the end when the bill came. 3 drinks, an appetizer and 2 entrees= $66. Isarn Thai Soul Kitchen will definitely be on the rotation of regular dates night for the Rabuchins. Welcome to Kirkland Isarn. You DO have soul. Love ya. Mean it. ~j
It's time for "Dine Around Seattle" where you can support local restaurants with gourmet prix-fixe menus. $30 for three course dinner and $15 for three course lunches, how could you possibly go wrong? Over 35 restaurants are participating from Sun 3/2- Thur 3/27 (excluding dinner Fri/Sat and lunch Sat/Sun. You don't have to travel far, in Kirkland the following are participating: BeachHouse Bar & Grill, Le Grand Bistro Americain, Ristorante Paradiso, Volterra.
Other eating temptations you should know about:
The Cascade Dinner Series at The Heathman. Kirkland and Portland are pairing up for " A Taste of Two Cities" on Fri 3/21 at 6:30pm. For $109 you get a five course meal, reception and wine. Chefs Brian Scheehser of Trellis and Michael Stanton of The Heathman Restaurant Bar have joined culinary forces to bring you some amazing dishes. Call 425-284-5858 or email email@example.com for reservations.
Anthony's Oyster Festival in March! This month features fresh oysters from cold clean Pacific waters that may be on the half shell, seared well, baked, fried, or of course, wine-paired. Oyster wines, oyster tacos, oyster salsas, oyster burgers--oyster lovers, look no further. There's lunch ($8.95-15.95) or dinner ($17.95-28.95) or happy hour ($6 oyster specials) which all offer delicious choices. Or if you think you are a pro 'slurper' you should show up during the Friday Night Oyster Slurp at 6pm where you can win prizes for some hands-free oyster slurping. This is sort of tempting to go watch just so I can put photos up on the blog for everyone to see. ;-)
Isarn Thai Soul Kitchen is opening soon in downtown Kirkland (old Thin Pan location on Lake St.). I was a bit confused by the 'soul' food reference with Thai food until I read this on their Facebook page, "The reasoning behind 'Thai Soul Kitchen' in our name is simply said because we know every type of culture has their own soul food. So for Thai people their comfort foods would be Isarn food. It's food that satisfies every palate and fuels the soul." It looks like it's shaping up nicely in there. LMK if you beat me to it for trying out a meal there.