Ballard set to host 10th annual M.S. Pub Crawl this Saturday


Ballard will play host to the 10th annual M.S. Pub Crawl this Saturday, March 28, from 3 p.m. – 9 p.m.

The community driven fundraising event is set to raise funds for the Multiple Sclerosis Society.

The event will kick off at The Ballard Loft (5105 Ballard Ave NW) at 3 p.m. and attendees can make their $30 donation and pick up their t-shirt (pictured) between 3 p.m. – 5 p.m.

The event will continue to King’s Hardware, Sunset Tavern, Bal Mar (where a raffle is set to take place at 7:30 p.m.) and finally the Kangaroo and Kiwi Pub.

The raffle is set to be huge this year with some fantastic prizes including a Four Season Hotel Stay, Seattle Art Museum Tix and $100 Canlis gift cards.

Organizer Molly Johnston is excited to raise both awareness about the disease and funds for the M.S. Society.

Drink specials will be available all day for attendees.

Click here to find out more.

Local creates petition to save Edith Macefield’s House


In the wake of the failure of the recent auction, a petition has been created by locals to preserve Edith Macefield’s house.

The petition created on is urging the  Seattle City Council and the Ballard Historical Society to turn the famous home into a museum.

“It’s more than just a house, though. This house is a symbol of defiance,” says petition creator Amanda Allen.

Check out Allen’s message on the petition website below:

In 2006 Edith Macefield turned down US$1 million to sell her home to make way for a commercial development. In my experience, that is unheard of. Why would this elderly woman, who knew she had a limited time on this Earth anyway, turn down so much money just to stay in her home?

It’s because, after her long and adventurous life, she wanted to die at peace in her home. Which she did just two years later, after gaining worldwide notoriety for her refusal to sell and inspiring a movie, and millions of people to “hold on to things that are important to you.”

I hope to see this home turned into a small museum. One that commemorates Edith, and her amazing life.

Edith Macefield was a hero; joining the Service in England after leaving Oregon at far too young an age, then taking care of the orphans of war there to come back here and turn down more money than she’s probably had in her life.

We celebrate and commemorate a lot of silly things. This isn’t one of them.

Over 200 people have signed the petition so far of the 500 that are needed. Click here to sign the petition.

SPU releases draft map of Ballard Drainage Project rain gardens

Seattle Public Utilities recently released a map featuring the proposed locations for the Ballard Natural Drainage Project rain gardens in the neighborhood.

The map was released at the end of February after an Open House event was held to gain feedback on the proposed rain garden types and their locations.

The Ballard Natural Drainage project has been in the works since 2012 in an effort to keep polluted runoff out of the sewers (and our waterways) with a system of roadside rain gardens.

Without a natural drainage system, heavy rain can cause polluted runoff and sewage to overflow into lakes, streams and the Puget Sound. Due to the runoff’s impact on our water quality, and because of the federal Clean Water and state regulations, SPU are taking measures to reduce the overflows in our neighborhood.

As a neighborhood, Ballard represents a third of all combined sewer overflows from Seattle’s system. According to SPU, during the high rain year of 2012 the sewers in Ballard deposited 54 million gallons of raw sewage and polluted rainwater into Portage Bay out of the 154 million gallons deposited by all of SPU’s other systems combined. Although 2013 brought less rainfall, Ballard still contributed to one-third of all flows.

SPU is currently in the draft planning stages of constructing the natural drainage project in planting strips along 17 blocks in Loyal Heights. Check out the list of the specific rain garden locations as shown on the current draft map:

  • 17th Ave NW – between NW 77th and NW 83rd Streets.
  • 19th Ave NW – between NW75th and NW 77th Streets.
  • 26th Ave NW – between NW 80th and NW 83rd Streets.
  • NW 75th St – between Jones Ave NW and 17th Ave NW.
  • NW 77th St – between 17th and 19th Avenues NW and between 25th and 26th Avenues NW.

Throughout the planning and construction period, SPU will coordinate with the Neighborhood Greenways program (which is planning the greenway on 17th Ave NW) and with SDOT’s Safe Routes to Schools program.

The areas chosen for the rain gardens were determined by a series of test borings that sought well-draining soils (called glacial outwash or glacial recessional soils). Ultimately, SPU’s decision about the final rain garden locations will rest on multiple factors including the volume of stormwater that can be managed, potential impact to existing trees, existing soil conditions, location of existing utilities and community input.

Two types of rain gardens, including the side slope and bulb-out options (pictured below), are set to be installed with the garden type depending on the specific location. Each rain garden will also feature different plants that, according to SPU, will be both visually pleasing and environmentally beneficial.

Side slope cross

bulb cross

Locals have expressed concerns about how both the construction and the presence of rain gardens themselves will impact their daily lives. One major concern is the possibility of basements flooding in the area. According to SPU, the Natural Drainage Project will be designed to allow stormwater to slowly seep into the ground and away from basements, usually at depths lower than most basements.

“SPU does not know of any rain garden projects that have caused increased basement moisture,” writes SPU on their website.

In terms of parking and construction, SPU confirms that Natural Drainage Project impact will be as minimal as possible. No legal on-street parking will be affected by the project and new curb bulb-outs at certain corners will prevent illegal parking.

When construction begins, locals can expect to see construction crews working in the area directly in front of their home for between one and two months. Specific impacts in front of any single home is set to be intermittent as construction progresses. The most significant impacts, which include excavation and sidewalk work, will each last about one to three weeks at a time, with excavation occurring earliest in the project, and then sidewalk installation at the end.

The project team will continue refining the designs throughout the spring and summer with construction anticipated to begin in late summer this year.

Click here to check out more information on the Ballard Natural Drainage Project website.

Nepali handcraft store opens on Market St


Ballard’s first Nepali handcraft store is now open at 1708 NW Market St.

Himalayan Treasure opened last week and aims to provide Ballard with one-of-a-kind expertly crafted items from Nepal.

The new store specializes in Buddhist Thanka paintings (pictured below), expertly crafted copper statues, enchanting singing bowls, incense laced with Himalayan herbs, silver jewelry, and varieties of hand oven bags, and felted items by a women’s group in Nepal.

“Himalayan Treasure is eager to add to and enhance collections with our one of a kind art and we want to introduce our first class tailored services,” says manager Sushil Mulepati.


The store also contains a meditation room where customers have the chance to get away from their busy lives and reflect.

Mulepati is offering 20% off everything in the store until the end of the month to celebrate the grand opening.

BHS students seek feedback for solar study

Students from the BHS Biotechnology Academy are working on a year long science project and need local feedback.

The group is planning to enter WSU’s science contest, Imagine Tomorrow, and are putting together a behavioral study on people and solar panels in Seattle.

“We are trying to collect data on why or why people don’t invest in solar panels in Seattle. Our goal is simply to inform people and get them excited about the opportunities solar panels offer,” says BHS student Lia Freeman.

The students have put together two brief online surveys to collect data from both non-solar owners and solar owners. The study is mainly directed towards local home owners.

To participate click on the appropriate link above.

Open Mic on tonight at Grumpy D’s

Grumpy D’s Coffee House (7001 15th Ave NW) is hosting an open mic event this evening from 6:30 p.m. – 9 p.m. The all ages event is set to feature the talents of local performers.

If you have a hidden talent that you’d like to share with a few people, the Grumpy D’s open mic night is the perfect place to showcase it. The team allows stand up, live musical performances, words (poetry, etc.) and many other types of entertainment.

“We do ask that if you come to perform, please do keep it PG13 rated as there are kids that attend our open mic Thursdays, thank you,” says host Arthur Lipatan.

Coffee, snacks, sandwiches, beer and wine will be on offer for attendees. Cost of the event is free.

Grumpy D’s Open Mic is on every Thursday. Click here to check out the Facebook event page.

Ballard Library to host all-ages board game night this evening

Ballard Library will be hosting an all-ages board game night tonight in the meeting room from 6 p.m. – 7 p.m. All are welcome to attend.

Bring your friends and family, or come alone and join in playing a vast array of board games. They will have Blokus, Carcassonne, Ticket to Ride, Jenga, Scrambled States of America and more. The event is free and registration is not required.

Click here to check out the events calendar full of exciting events happening at Ballard Library.

Unique items on offer at 30th annual Northern Lights Auktion


The Nordic Heritage Museum is busily preparing for the 30th Annual Northern Lights Auction. This year’s fundraising event will be held on Saturday, April 18, at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in downtown Seattle (721 Pine St).

Doors are set to open at 5 p.m. with a champagne reception and a silent auction. The evening to follow will then be filled with Nordic cuisine, entertainment and of course the live auction.

Guests will have the chance to bid on unique items including rare bottles of aquavit, extraordinary experiences, and one-of-a-kind art.

Tickets for the 30th Annual Northern Lights Auktion are available to both members and non-members. Individual tickets cost $125 and table reservations (for 10 guests) cost $1,000. All proceeds raised from the event will benefit the Nordic Heritage Museum.

Locals who also want to donate items and experiences for the auction can still do so.

Tickets and information are available online or by calling Kiersten Bowers at  (206) 789-5707 x24.

Volunteers needed for Ballard Corners work party

Volunteers are needed for the Spring work party at Ballard Corners Park (17th Ave NW and NW 63rd St) this Saturday, March 28, from 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. rain or shine.

The team will be preparing the plants for spring, weeding, pruning, spreading woodchip mulch, and cleaning up debris. The bulbs planted last fall are also getting ready to bloom!

“Many hands make light (and lighthearted!) work and anyone who is interested is encouraged attend,” says organizer Gabriella.

Volunteers will be provided with some tools and refreshments. Please bring your own gloves and tools if you have them.

To find out more email Gabriella at or call (206) 782-3238.

Chamber seeks local feedback to “activate” Ballard Commons Park

The Ballard Chamber of Commerce recently reached a two-year agreement with the Seattle Parks Department to ensure that locals are getting the most out of Ballard Commons Park. To reach this goal, Ballard Chamber is planning a series of small and large community events to “activate” the park.

Through this “activation” Ballard Chamber hopes to reduce the negative activities that are currently a common sight in the park and to ensure that locals are able to utilize the park to meet their needs.

In order to put together a plan for the events, the Chamber is looking to locals for their feedback via an online survey.

“We’d like to hear your ideas about the types of events that could be planned for the park. It could be a smaller-scale event, such as a dog walk meet-up, a fitness class and buskers over the lunch hour. Or maybe a larger event like a concert or movie in the park,” says Executive Director Mike Stewart.

Although Ballard Chamber is spearheading the effort to activate Ballard Commons, they say that community involvement will be essential to the success of the events.

“While we’d love your ideas, we’d also love to know if you’re willing to roll up your sleeves and help plan and implement an event,” says Stewart.

Click here to complete the survey and give your feedback.