Former fishing cottage for sale in Ballard

At just 370 square feet, this little cottage at 2508 NW 67th St. is one of Ballard’s smallest houses.

Originally built as a fishermen’s shack back in 1923, according to Curbed, this little house is now for sale for $440,000 with a detached garage on a 1801 square-foot lot.

That’s certainly small, but the small efficiency dwelling units (SEDUs) that are popping up in developments around Ballard are as small as 200 square feet.

“Imagine the fun you will have at this house!” explains the listing. “Previous owners used it as a vacation rental and did very well.”

If you’re adventurous, the realtor is holding an open house on Saturday from noon to 2 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

> See upcoming events in our Ballard calendar <

Ideas for improving comments?

We’ve tried LOTS of different approaches to comments on My Ballard over the years.

We began with open comments, then switched to Disqus, then switched to Facebook comments (backlash!), then switched to register-only comments (crickets), then back to open comments.

We’ve always had to contend with the usual moderation challenges — here are the rules — but events in Ballard over the last few months have amplified the challenge to new heights. Many people aren’t happy with the state of affairs in our neighborhood, and duking it out in comments has become a common occurrence.

So… we’re looking for some advice. Anyone know of any WordPress plugins or new commenting platforms that encourage open conversations but at the same time reward more thoughtful responses? There’s no perfect solution, but we’d love to hear ideas on how to make it better.

Ballard SeafoodFest looking for volunteers

Ballard’s biggest summer event is less than two months away, and SeafoodFest organizers are looking for volunteers.

SeafoodFest is a free community event that attracts over 65,000 people to Central Ballard over three days: the evening of July 13th (Friday) and all day July 14th and 15th. There’s lots of live music, activities, vendors and of course — seafood.

You can sign up right here for volunteer shifts in the beer garden, info booth, kids area, parking and traffic control, the salmon BBQ and more.

So far, it looks like half of the volunteer shifts remain unfilled.

Early look at 2 planned apartment complexes

We’ve been reporting about two incoming developments, one on 15th Ave. NW and the other on Market St. Now we have the preliminary designs for both.

“The Apodment” is slated for the site of Mac’s Upholstery at 5011 15th Ave. The proposal is for 132 small efficiency dwelling units with no on-site parking (no longer required since it’s inside the Ballard Urban Center). Similar to the Vive nearby, it looks like it will have a big sign on the side.

When we talked to the owner of Mac’s Upholstery late last year, he said he has plans to move to a nearby property. Meanwhile, the city is installing a crosswalk and center divide at 15th and 53rd.

The next design review board meeting for the development is slated for July 16 at 6:30 pm at the Ballard Community Center.

To the west at 2417 NW Market St., a larger apartment complex is in the works to replace the building that includes Ballard Transfer and Twice Sold Tales.

The 6-story development will house 171 apartment units, 101 below-grade parking spots and ground-level retail space. It backs up to the railroad tracks, just to the north of the waterfront.

The architects say project goals include “respect the character and history of Ballard” both on the commercial side on Market St. and “the maritime industrial area in our backyard.” They also say they plan to “coordinate with the planned Burke Gilman Trail extension (which is) expected to start construction parallel to this project.” The Missing Link is slated to run along Market St. in front of the development on its way to Golden Gardens Park.

Both of these projects still need final design approval before moving ahead.

> See upcoming events in our Ballard calendar <

Briefs: Tunnel, Magnolia Bridge, Joli, spray park, BHS and garage sales

EXPENSIVE TUNNEL: The wastewater tunnel project that will stretch between Ballard and Wallingford is now projected to cost $147 million more than originally thought, reports Crosscut. The joint city-county project, headed up by SPU, is designed to prevent polluted water — 62 million gallons a year! — from spilling into the Ship Canal, Salmon Bay and Lake Union during heavy rains. SPU believes it can cover the cost overruns, but it still needs city council approval.

NO MAGNOLIA BRIDGE?: SDOT told Magnolia neighbors in a meeting last night that it may not have enough money to replace the aging Magnolia Bridge. “It’s still on the table, but it’s really at the high end of the cost in terms of replacement,” said Kit Loo, SDOT Project Manager. While the city mulls alternatives, some Magnolia neighbors have launched a petition to “Save Magnolia Bridge.”

JOLI COMING BACK: The Ballard restaurant Joli, which closed in late April, announced it will reopen June 5th with “with expanded hours and a menu reset.” Eater has the story.

SPRAY PARK OPENS: This Saturday the spray park at Ballard Commons officially opens for the season, running from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.

ORCHESTRA CONCERT: Ballard High is holding its Spring Orchestra Concert this Thursday evening. In March, Ballard’s Chamber Orchestra was named first runner up at the The National Orchestra Cup at the Lincoln Center and was also honored with the best strings section award. The concert is free (donations accepted), and it begins at 7:30 p.m. at BHS.

GARAGE SALES: This Saturday is the Whittier Heights annual garage sale event beginning at 9 a.m. Quite a few families are expected to participate, and you can stop by 73rd and Dibble on Saturday morning to pick up a map.

FOOTBALL CAMPS: BHS football coach Ross Humphries sent us a note to remind everyone about two football camps this June. One is for incoming BHS freshmen (June 25-28th) and the other is a youth camp (June 11-14th for grades 2nd-7th). More details here.

ON THE CALENDAR: Have you seen our Ballard events calendar lately? It’s packed with great community events in the greater Ballard area — and you can submit your own.

‘Super Bueno’ restaurant opens in Fremont

Ethan Stowell’s latest creation is not just bueno, it’s Super Bueno — a new Mexican restaurant that just opened this week at 3627 Stone Way N. in Fremont.

Super Bueno wants the best of both worlds: a family-friendly restaurant that also attracts the 20-something crowd. The lower level features a full bar with 65 tequilas and mezcals, and the upper level has a play area for kids. There are also two large heated patios right on Stone Way, and a happy hour that runs from 4-6 p.m. every day.

It’s also a cafe that serves espresso, breakfast burritos and sandwiches during the day. Then a restaurant that offers a full range of tacos, nachos, salads and flank steak in the evening.

“We’re not trying to be crazy serious about it,” Ethan Stowell told Seattle Met. “We expect to serve a lot of cheese quesadillas.”

The cafe is open from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. every day, and the restaurant opens at 11 a.m. on weekends and 4 p.m. on weekdays.

Lots of new businesses opening this month

The Nordic Museum and New Seasons Market aren’t the only new businesses opening in Ballard this month. From a distillery and a cannabis shop to a travel boutique and a Golden Gardens snack shack, May has been big month for new businesses. Here’s our roundup:

HERITAGE DISTILLING: As we previewed back in February, Heritage Distilling has opened at 1836 NW Market St. (above), right next to Ballard Blossom. This is the company’s fifth location in the Northwest — you may recognize Heritage’s popular BSB on store shelves — and the Ballard tasting room offers “an extensive selection of barware, cocktail supplies, memberships, merchandise, customizable gift packs and of course, spirits.” You can even fill up a growler. Hours are 12-8 p.m. on Monday-Friday, 11 a.m.-8 p.m. on Saturday and 11 a.m.-7 p.m. on Sunday.

DOCKSIDE CANNABIS: With two of the three owners from Frelard, Dockside Cannabis’ third Seattle location is closest to home. The new recreational marijuana dispensary just opened a couple days ago at 4601 NW Leary Way (above), near the Bev Mo and New Seasons. Dockside Cannabis Ballard features “a full range of carefully curated cannabis products,” and co-owner Maria Moses told the My Ballard Group that “awesome specials happening right now.” Hours are Monday-Saturday from 9 a.m.-11 p.m. and Sundays from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.

ATLAS TRAVEL WEAR: Slated to open on May 26 at 5337 Ballard Ave NW (above), Atlas Travel Wear “aims to dress women for adventure, whatever adventure means to them,” says owner Jeannine Kempees. Named after her dog Atlas — who has been helping get things ready over the last few weeks — the Old Ballard store will feature quality travel apparel, travel bags, accessories and will also showcase local jewelry.

MIRI’S SNACK SHACK: Miri Plowman and her partner Gabe Skoda had their first date at Golden Gardens a few years ago, and now they’ve opened Miri’s Snack Shack in the concession stand area near the bathhouse. The rotating menu includes such things as poffertjes (little yummy Dutch pancakes), kebab sandwiches, chocolate dipped Full Tilt ice cream bars and a fresh fruit piña colada slushie (above). The shack has been open a couple weeks now, as Seattle Magazine reports, they sold out quickly last sunny weekend. They’re currently open Thursday-Sunday from 10 a.m.-8 p.m. with plans to expand to 7 days a week in June.

As always, if you see a new business opening, email us at

(Photos from each respective company’s Facebook and Instagram accounts.)

Lockspot Cafe temporarily closed after reports of norovirus outbreak

The King County Health Department is investigating an outbreak of norovirus associated with four restaurants, including the Lockspot Cafe in Ballard.

“Since May 16, Public Health has learned of 3 people from two separate meal parties who became ill after consuming food and beverage from Lockspot Cafe between May 12–13, 2018,” the health department said. “Environmental Health investigators visited and closed the restaurant on May 17. At this point, investigators have not identified any risk factors that are known to contribute to the spread of norovirus.”

The other restaurants are Anthony’s Homeport in Des Moines, Italianissimo Ristorante in Woodinville and Okinawa Teriyaki in downtown Seattle.

Lockspot Cafe is required to thoroughly clean the premises. When we called on Saturday, the restaurant said it hopes to reopen in the next few days.

‘No Tax on Jobs’ coalition pushing for referendum to repeal head tax

The grandson of the founder of Dick’s Drive-in is helping spearhead a new effort to bring a referendum to the ballot that aims to overturn the city’s new head tax.

Saul Spady, who runs a Seattle ad agency, is working with the new “No Tax on Jobs” coalition to gather 17,632 signatures by June 12th to qualify the referendum for the August ballot. Spady’s sister, Jasmine Donovan, is an executive at Dick’s Drive-in who co-wrote an editorial in the Seattle Times early this month that proposed an alternative to the head tax.

In addition to Spady, the coalition lists its officers as PushPay’s James Maiocco and Phillip Lloyd, a downtown accountant. Spady told Geekwire that his goal is to first repeal the head tax, then create a ballot initiative with alternative solutions to reduce homelessness.

The No Tax on Jobs website says the petition can be signed at 2211 Elliott Ave., Suite 200., however a story in The Stranger on Friday indicated that the petition language was still be worked out.

We’ll keep you updated.