News for Seattle's Ballard neighborhood and beyond

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What’s on this weekend

October 20th, 2017 by Meghan Walker

There’s quite a few events happening this weekend, from a plethora of live music to a fall festival at the Ballard Community Center and a mayoral candidate public forum to attend on Sunday. If you have an event to add to this list, contact us at

Enjoy your fall weekend!

Friday, October 20:

  • Live Music:
    • All Star Opera, Real Don Music, and La Fonda at Sunset Tavern (5433 Ballard Ave NW), 9pm, $12.
    • Nick Foster Band, Bart Budwig, and Kara Hesse at Conor Byrne Pub (5140 Ballard Ave NW) at 9pm $8 advance, $10 door.
    • TR3 featuring Tim Reynolds w/ Marcus Eaton at Tractor Tavern (5213 Ballard Ave NW) at 9pm. $22.
    • Jazz at Egan’s Ballard Jam House (1707 NW Market St). 7pm – Julian and Alison – Julian Smedley and Alison Odell ($10 cover) 9pm – Taylor Zickefoose Quartet ($10 cover/$8 students)

Saturday, October 21:

  • Ballard Community Center Fall Festival 11am to 1pm (6020 28th Ave NW).  Time to celebrate fall! Join us for a day of fantastic fall activities. You can try your hand at the apple press, make your own scarecrow (bring old clothes and a pillow case), and of course, play games.
  • Ballard Preschool Co-Op Gently Used Sale 9am to 1pm at Phinney Neighborhood Center (6532 Phinney Ave N). Great deals on high-quality gently used clothing, toys, shoes, strollers, gear, maternity wear, and more! Arrive early for the best selection (the entry line typically starts forming before 9am) and bring plenty of shopping bags! Strollers must be parked at the door.
  • Beerhaus at Chadhaus 6 – 8pm (908 NW 50th Street). Check out a local furniture workshop and sample local beer, with proceeds going to the Seattle Architecture Foundation. Tickets available here.
  • Greyhound Meet and Greet at All the Best Pet Care (1909 NW Market St.) 11am-1pm. Join us to meet retired racing greyhounds, learn about adoption, volunteer opportunities and more. Click here for more information.
  • Live Music:
    • Earthless and Head Band at Sunset Tavern (5433 Ballard Ave NW), 9pm, $16.
    • Will Moore Band and Abbot Kinney at Conor Byrne Pub (5140 Ballard Ave NW) at 9pm, $8.
    • Heels to the Hardwood w/ Old Coast & Eric Tollefson Band at Tractor Tavern (5213 Ballard Ave NW) at 9pm. $10.
    • Jazz at Egan’s Ballard Jam House (1707 NW Market St). 7pm – Lady ‘A’ and her Back Porch Blues Showcase, featuring Mikayla (vocals/drums), Tralenea Givens (vocals) and Anthony Watson (drums) ($12 cover)9pm – Vocalists Jennifer Mellish [Website] and Amy Kramer Hawks, with Randy Halberstadt (piano), Ryan Donnelly (bass) and Max Wood (drums) ($10 cover)

Sunday, October 22:

  • Mayoral Candidate Forum, 4:30pm at Phinney Neighborhood Center. Hear from candidates Cary Moon and Jenny Durkan in a discussion moderated by David Hyde from KUOW Radio. Doors open at 4:30 p.m. Free snacks, beer, and non-alcoholic drinks will be available. The forum, including audience questions, will be 5-6 p.m. with a half hour afterwards for socializing.
  • Ballard Farmer’s Market along Ballard Ave from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Click here to see this week’s specials.
  • Live Music:
    • Open mic at Conor Byrne Pub (5140 Ballard Ave NW) sign-ups at 7:30 pm.
    • THUNDER! Retrowave DJ night at Sunset Tavern (5433 Ballard Ave NW), 8pm, no cover.
    • The Landmarks w/ Wild Wild Mexico & Hand in the Attic at Tractor Tavern (5213 Ballard Ave NW) at 8pm. $8.

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Majestic Bay Theatre to screen ‘Coraline’ for BHS film program fundraiser

October 20th, 2017 by Meghan Walker

On Saturday, Oct. 28, Majestic Bay Theatre will host a fundraiser for Ballard High School’s award-winning film program. They’ll screen the movie Coraline at 9:30pm, with all proceeds going to benefit the Digital Filmmaking Program at BHS.

Still from the BHS-made trailer “A Trip to the Groovies”

If you’ve seen a film at the Majestic Bay, you might remember seeing A Trip to the Groovies, the policy trailer that plays before the feature film. The trailer was made by BHS students to replace A Trip to the Movies, which informed the audience of theater rules and etiquette. The old trailer was a mock instructional film set in the 60s, following two kids, Russ and Ellen, as they watch a movie. According to Matt Lawrence from BHS, when Majestic Bay went digital in 2014, they needed a new policy trailer in a digital format, and invited the BHS film students to make one. “After considering various ideas, Ballard’s filmmakers decided to follow Russ and Ellen to the movies again – this time in 1977.  The challenging concept required period vehicles, costumes, hair, make-up, and actors who might possibly be the original Russ and Ellen – 17 years later.”

Lawrence tells My Ballard that the owners were so pleased with the new trailer that they made a donation to the program and pledge to host an annual fundraiser for the program. The Coraline screening is the third annual fundraiser at Majestic Bay for the program.

To see other BHS films, visit their Vimeo page.


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Add your house to the Ballard Halloween map

October 20th, 2017 by Meghan Walker

If you want trick-or-treaters on Halloween, add your house to the Ballard Halloween map.  Click the Google map below, and add your address using the provided functions. (Any issues, email us your address at, and we’ll add it for you).

As always, there will be a big Halloween trick-or-treating event in downtown Ballard; stay tuned for more details on that.

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Mayoral candidate forum at Phinney Neighborhood Center on Sunday

October 20th, 2017 by Meghan Walker

On Sunday, Oct. 22, mayoral candidates Cary Moon and Jenny Durkan will have a discussion moderated by David Hyde from KUOW Radio. The free event is from 5 to 6pm at the Phinney Neighborhood Center (6532 Phinney Ave N).

The forum will include audience questions, with a half hour afterwards for socializing. Doors open at 4:30, and free snacks, beer, and non-alcoholic drinks will be available.

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Development Update October 19: streamlined review for three-story townhouse

October 19th, 2017 by Meghan Walker

Today’s development update includes a streamlined review for a three-story, seven-unit townhouse in Ballard, as posted in the city’s Land Use Information Bulletin.

Notice of Streamlined Design Review:

1117 NW 56TH ST


Streamlined Design Review Application proposal to allow a three-story, seven-unit townhouse building. Existing structure to be demolished. No parking proposed.


The Director will accept written comments to assist in the preparation of the early design guidancethrough November 1, 2017. You are invited to offer comments regarding important site planning and design issues, which you believe, should be addressed in the design for this project. Please note that this is the only opportunity to comment on this proposal.

Comments should be submitted to or

City of Seattle, SDCI, PRC
700 5th Avenue, Suite 2000
PO Box 34019
Seattle, WA  98124-4019


Following the public comment period, the Seattle Department of Construction and Inspections will issue a written design guidance report. This report will consider public comment and the applicable city-wide and neighborhood specific Design Guidelines and will serve as the basis for further review of the building permit. Once the applicant has incorporated the design guidance into the proposal they may apply for a building permit. No public notice of the building permit application will be provided.


For more information about this proposal or the Design Review Program and process, you may visit the Design Review Program website at, contact the Land Use Planner listed above, or visit our office at the address above. (We are open from 8 am to 4 pm Monday, Wednesday and Friday and from 10:30 am to 4 pm Tuesday and Thursday.)  Additional application documents for this proposal may be found at

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La Isla sends hurricane relief aid to Puerto Rico

October 19th, 2017 by Meghan Walker

By Kpojo Kparyea

A fire truck blocking a lane of traffic in front of the Puerto Rican restaurant La Isla on October 8 wasn’t there to put out a fire. The truck was brought in to help with donation boxes.

It was part of the restaurant’s hurricane relief fundraiser for Puerto Rico, which also featured Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal as a speaker.

Off to the sides of the restaurant, coal pits were set up to roast pigs later in the day while a crowd gathered in front of the restaurant. On the sidewalks in front of the restaurant, three tables were set up. One table was headed by little girls selling cupcakes while another table sold black T-shirts. Printed on the shirts: a blue fist with the words “Puerto Rico” in the center.

At the third table La Isla volunteers Yaniz Padilla and Gaby Bergollo worked a prize wheel. For $20, people spun the wheel to win prizes like a Spanish tortilla omelette or action figures. Padilla, a psychiatrist at Seattle Children’s Hospital, got involved in the fundraiser after she saw a Facebook post the restaurant made asking for volunteers.

Volunteers Gaby Bergollo,Yaniz Padilla and Karen Diaz pose for a picture 

“Volunteers procured the items,” Padilla said, while standing in front of the prize wheel. “A lot of donations come from surrounding stores.”

The restaurant was raising money for Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria. The restaurant was able to raise about $16,000 in aid from the event. The money made from the event was added to the online fundraising page set up by the restaurant, intended to buy supplies for Puerto Rico and some of their travel volunteers plan to deliver them directly to the island. A few of the travel volunteers were people who lived in Puerto Rico but came to the mainland because of the hurricane; some already had tickets to go to the island.

Bergollo is one of the travel volunteers going to Puerto Rico, and she plans to leave right after the fundraiser. Next to her was her green suitcase filled with care kits to give to the hurricane victims.“There is aid, but it’s not getting to people,” Bergollo said.

Bergollo had concerns about aid reaching those in rural areas. As of Oct. 16, only 392 miles of Puerto Rico’s 5,073 miles of roads were open, according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency. These numbers mean not even 8 percent of roads are accessible on the island. The government of Puerto Rico also reports that less than 14 percent of people have access to electricity and only 72 percent of people have access to water.

La Isla is making sure that volunteers like Bergollo deliver care kits with water purification tablets, first aid kits, and flashlights.

Vincente Bravo, the general manager of La Isla, was born in Puerto Rico in 1978 and moved to Washington in 2008. He has worked at the restaurant for nine years, and is one of the founders for the relief fund. He said that the group is focusing on places the government is not focusing on. “Places deep in the mountains,” he said.

Places like Utuado, a town located in the mountains where Bergollo delivered the care kits that were made by La Isla volunteers. Bergollo returned to Washington on Oct. 17 after staying in Puerto Rico for about a week. “A lot of houses were destroyed,” Bergollo said over the phone. “A lot of people lost everything.”

Bergollo, who was born in Puerto Rico and is currently in her second year grad program at the University of Washington, was surprised by the state of things in Puerto Rico. “It’s not the Puerto Rico I saw last time I was here, which was in May,” she said.

Bergollo was able to distribute the care kits to those who needed them with the help of a local pastor, who had knowledge of the community. The kits were initiated by Erika Brown, head of the the travel committee for the relief fund. The kits started after Brown realized that one of the volunteers was heading to Puerto Rico and had space to take items.

The distribution of the donations is currently at the travel volunteer’s own discretion, but Brown hopes to change that. “We are trying to seek out a shelter, a school, or an organization that’s assisting more than just one family,” Brown said.

Though the group has been receiving monetary donations as well as supplies, their biggest issue, according to Brown, is transporting donations to Puerto Rico. Things like the Jones Act of 1920 make shipping prices expensive. Though the act was waived by the Trump administration after the hurricane, the waiver has since expired.

The Jones Act of 1920 requires ships to be owned and staffed by American citizens or permanent residents when goods are shipped from one American port to another. So, anything shipped to and from Puerto Rico is expensive because the ships do not have international competition. The group is still focused on transport and getting donations to rural areas. However, Brown’s latest goal is to provide family kits that will include items like soap, peroxide and even diapers.

One big accomplishment for the group of volunteers was establishing themselves as a non-profit called La Isla Hurricane Relief Fund. “We are very grassroots,” Brown said, “but to say that doesn’t mean it’s not getting done.”

The group has created a board, with Brown as co-president. According to Brown, La Isla secured a spot on a container that will be sent to Puerto Rico. The container will be provided by Costco and La Isla is allowed to add about 1,000 pounds of donations.

Though they are grassroots, Brown hopes that people are encouraged by the assistance of their organization.

“It could have been our natural disaster,” Brown said. “We gotta help our fellow Americans.”

Kpojo Kparyea is a student with the University of Washington’s News Lab. 


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Ballard Locks tours available during annual November maintenance

October 19th, 2017 by Meghan Walker

The large lock of the Ballard Locks will be emptied in mid-November, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers are offering VIP tours to the public for adults. The tours will be Nov. 13, 16, and 17 from 10 am to noon.

“This is a unique opportunity to learn how the Locks really work, how they serve Seattle and what it takes to keep them functioning after 100 years of operation,” according to the event information.  They say the tours are limited to groups of 20 people and sell out fast.

“It is very interesting to see just how large the lock chamber is, how it works, and the amount of sea life (including lots of barnacles) that accumulates during the year,” the event information reads. For more information, click here.

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Paving planned for NW 59th St on Thursday and Friday

October 18th, 2017 by Meghan Walker

The Seattle Department of Transportation is planning to have crews paving NW 59th St between 26th Ave NW and 28th Ave NW this Thursday and Friday, Oct. 19 and 20. The work is weather-dependent.

From SDOT:

From 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Thursday, October 19 and Friday, October 20, travelers can expect:

  • Crews will be paving NW 59th St between 26th Ave NW and 28th Ave NW
  • All traffic on NW 59th St in the work zone will be detoured during work hours
  • There will be no parking on NW 59th St in the work zones
  • “No Parking” signs will be placed before work starts and parking restrictions begin
  • Access to driveways will be limited, but accessible overnight
  • Sidewalks will remain open
  • Police officers will assist with traffic

SDOT says the work is part of a 2017 Non-Arterial Street Resurfacing and Restoration (NASRR) Program Project.



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Seattle University asking for feedback on public safety concerns

October 18th, 2017 by Meghan Walker

Seattle University has released their 3rd annual citywide survey to get feedback on public safety and security concerns from Seattle residents. The results from the survey will be compiled in a report for the Seattle Police Department. The survey is open now until Nov. 30, and can be found here.

“Please circulate this information to your friends, family, co-workers and community members and feel free to post the information on your social media,” Michael Sowby posted on the Ballard forum. “Public safety and security are community concerns. Please make sure your voice is heard by completing the public safety survey today.”

Seattle Police say the Seattle University survey and research results directly impact and inform the Micro Community Policing Plans and Seattle Police response.

From Seattle Police:

The Seattle Public Safety Survey works to collect qualitative and quantitative data that gives insight to perceptions of crime and safety within each micro-community.  The areas measured are perceptions of police legitimacy, informal social control, social cohesion, fear of crime, social disorganization, and positive perceptions and high knowledge of Seattle Police Department’s community engagement initiatives. Ideally, a healthy community with positive police-citizen relations will have high police legitimacy, low social disorganization, high informal social control, high social cohesion, low fear of crime, and positive perception and high knowledge of police-community engagement efforts.

In 2016, the primary concerns voiced by residents in the North Precinct (which includes Ballard) were :1) lack of police capacity/presence; 2) car prowl; 3) residential burglary; 4) property crime; and 5) car/RV camping. To view survey results from both 2015 and 2016, click here.


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Fall Festival coming this weekend at Ballard Community Center

October 18th, 2017 by Meghan Walker

On Saturday, Oct. 21, the Ballard Community Center will be hosting their annual Fall Festival from 11am to 1pm.

Time to celebrate fall! Join us for a day of fantastic fall activities. You can try your hand at the apple press, make your own scarecrow (bring old clothes and a pillow case), and of course, play games,” the event information reads. 

To learn more or to RSVP, visit the Facebook page created for the event.


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