Secret Garden Books to celebrate 40 years in Ballard

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Secret Garden Books is celebrating its 40th Anniversary on April 1 and everyone is invited to participate in the festivities.

The Ballard store is celebrating the milestone of 40 years in business as an independent, brick-and-mortar bookstore owned its entire duration by women.

The community at large is cordially invited to come to the celebration of this momentous occasion. There will be cake, prizes, a homemade photo booth, and mutual community adoration all day.

Check out the anniversary letter from Owner Christy McDanold below:

Dear Friends,

I am sitting at my kitchen table – the same kitchen table where I met with publishers’ sales reps 22 years ago when I had just bought the Secret Garden with no lease, no books, no staff; just the name of a bookshop that had been beloved for many years. But I knew even then that I had taken on more than just another retail business.

For me and the two women who owned the shop before me, the Secret Garden has been a labor of love; love of books, love of people and love of the community that we have fostered throughout the years. The Secret Garden is a place where friends meet, families come on days off from school, and no day goes by without a new friend or old an one cheering us, telling us that
this is their favorite place to buy books.

Over the years we have presented inspiring authors and illustrators to lucky audiences all over the region, delivered fabulous bookfairs to local schools and contributed to hundreds of other fundraisers in a myriad of ways.

We have also hired scores of young people, sometimes for their very first job, sending them on with new skills.

Yet I truly believe that our most enduring contribution to our community is our brick and mortar store, filled with beautiful books carefully chosen with customers old and new in mind, and booksellers ready and highly capable of helping each customer find just the right one. Every day we open our doors the Secret Garden Bookshop is part of the civic and economic vibrancy
that IS community.

YOU are part of our community! Thank you all so much! Come help us celebrate 40 years of Independent bookselling on Saturday April 1!

Christy McDanold &
Booksellers Susan, Marie, Suzanne, Cass, Becky, Taylor, Mary, Christina,
Madison, Ashley & Kristy

Store hours on April 1 are 10 a.m. – 7 p.m. Locals are invited to bring their memories of the Garden over the past 40 years and they will be shared creatively with all.

Seattle Public Library launches second round of local music collection

In 2016, The Seattle Public Library launched an online Seattle music collection called PlayBack that enabled Seattleites to download free local music.

Now, 50 more local artists have been added to, including NAVVI, Fysah, Golden Gardens, Raz Simone and more. Anyone can stream the albums for free, and Library cardholders can download and keep any music in the PlayBack collection.

PlayBack is open to all Seattle-area musicians who record or perform in the city of Seattle and have had an album produced within the last five years. PlayBack is intended to be an ever-expanding collection of Seattle’s musical culture, and a total of 100 new albums will be available each year through the Library’s catalog.

The jury for the second submission period included:

  • Tim Lennon, executive director of the Vera Project and music commissioner for the city of Seattle
  • Sharlese Metcalf, KEXP DJ, host and producer of Audioasis
  • Liz Riley Tollefson, co-founder of Three Imaginary Girls
  • Jonathan Zwickel, senior editor at City Arts
  • Kreg Hasegawa, adult services librarian at The Seattle Public Library
  • Kathleen Morley, selections services librarian at The Seattle Public Library
  • Cameron McCracken, library associate II at The Seattle Public Library
  • Abby Bass, adult services librarian at The Seattle Public Library

A third submission period will open during spring 2017. More information will be posted on PlayBack’s Information for Artists page.

Funding for PlayBack has been made possible with the generous support of The Seattle Public Library Foundation.

For more information, visit, call (206) 386-4636 or Ask a Librarian.

United Way free tax preparation help available on Tuesdays and Saturdays

United Way of King County is offering free tax help to local families making under $64,000 a year at Solid Ground (1501 N 45th St) on Tuesdays from 5–9 p.m. and on Saturdays from 10 a.m.–2 p.m. until April 20.

Volunteers will prepare taxes for attendees and help connect them with one-on-one financial counseling, healthcare enrollment, and other public benefits.

In addition to free tax prep, the team connects clients to healthcare, basic food, utility assistance, and ORCA Lift. This year, we’re trying to expand our reach across King County, in order to help community members achieve financial stability.

The campaign started as a grassroots initiative in White Center thirteen years ago led by United Way of King County. Over the years the campaign has spread throughout the county in an effort to connect low-income workers to the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC).

No appointments are needed to take advantage of this service.

Click here to learn more and find a list of what to bring.

“Talk about anything” teen discussion group to meet at Ballard Library

Middle school and high school students are invited to drop in to talk about, or listen to, what’s going on in their lives at a monthly discussion group from 3:45 p.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays, March 21, April 18 and May 16 at Ballard Branch (5614 22nd Ave NW).

This monthly event is hosted by Ballard teens and the Ballard Branch.

Library events and programs are free and everyone is welcome. Registration is not required. Free parking is available in the underground garage. Snacks will be provided.

For more information, call the Library at 206-684-4089 or Ask a Librarian.

Jim Lynch to host reading at Ballard Library

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Best-selling author Jim Lynch will read from his fourth novel, “Before the Wind,” from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. Thursday, March 23, at Ballard Branch (5614 22nd Ave NW) 206-684-4089.

“Before the Wind” is about an eccentric Seattle family of boat builders and sailors who reunite for one last race. The New York Times describes the novel as “an incredibly robust evocation of the sailing world of Puget Sound.” The Wall Street Journal calls it “an affectionate and very funny tribute to the gentle madness of sailing.”

Lynch is also the author of three other novels that were all adapted for the stage: the international bestseller “The Highest Tide,” which won the Pacific Northwest Bookseller Award; “Border Songs,” which won the Washington State Book Award and the Indie’s Choice Honor Book Award; and “Truth Like the Sun,” which was a finalist for the Hammett Prize for literary crime fiction. Lynch grew up in Seattle and now lives in Olympia.

This event is presented in partnership with Secret Garden Bookshop. Books will be available for purchase and signing. Library events are free and open to the public. Registration is not required. Free parking is available at the branch.

For more information, call the branch at 206-684-4089 or Ask a Librarian.

SPD officers arrest car prowlers in Frelard

A call about a group of people prowling cars and stealing license plates led SPD officers to arrest a man and a woman early last Thursday in Frelard.

Read more details from the SPD North Precinct Blotter below:

Officers were dispatched to the 4300 block of 6th Avenue NW just before 7 a.m. to investigate after a neighbor called in to report three people possibly stealing from cars parked in the area.

When officers arrived they found three people standing by a stolen car with the hood up.  When officers ordered the three to the ground the 40-year-old woman and the 50-year-old man, but the 48-year-old man refused.

The uncooperative suspect backed away, yelled “[fudge] that!”, and ran.

Officers chased the man, but temporarily lost the him until a neighbor pointed out the suspect laying in their side yard. Officers took the man into custody without further incident.

Officers released the 50-year-old man from the scene after determining that he had nothing to do with the stolen vehicle. Officers took the woman to the North Precinct where she was interviewed by detectives and later released pending further investigation. The 48-year-old man was booked into King County Jail on a felony warrant and drug charges.

Development Update March 20: A subdivision and a 4-story building

Two applications make up today’s update from the City of Seattle’s Department of Construction and Inspections as posted in the Land Use Information Bulletin.


8311 15th Ave NW

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A Land Use Application has been submitted to allow a 4-story building containing 5 congregate residences with 80 sleeping rooms in an environmentally critical area. Retail will be located at ground level. Existing building to be demolished.

8353 18th Ave NW

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A Land Use Application has been submitted to subdivide one development site into four unit lots. The construction of residential units is under Project #6530214. This subdivision of property is only for the purpose of allowing sale or lease of the unit lots. Development standards will be applied to the original parcel and not to each of the new unit lots

What’s on this weekend

Have a fantastic weekend in Ballard!

FRIDAY, March 17

SATURDAY, March 18

SUNDAY, March 19

  • Ballard Farmer’s Market along Ballard Ave from 10 a.m.- 3 p.m.
  • Sunday Morning Meditation at Amazing Grace Spiritual Center (2007 NW 61st St) from 10 a.m. – 10:20 a.m.
  • 9th annual Seattle Empty Bowls Fundraiser  at the Nordic Heritage Museum (3014 NW 67th St) from 4 p.m. – 7 p.m. Locals can purchase a hand made bowl filled with soup of their choice of a donation of $20 or more. Proceeds go directly to Ballard Food Bank.
  • Live Music
    • Open mic at Conor Byrne Pub (5140 Ballard Ave NW) sign-up at 7:30 p.m.
    • The Lowebeats, The Connection and The Dee Dees at Sunset Tavern (5433 Ballard Ave NW) 9 p.m. Tickets $10.