News for Seattle's Ballard neighborhood and beyond

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Electrical issue suspected cause of Swansons Nursery fire

August 23rd, 2016 by Danielle Anthony-Goodwin

Firefighters believe that an electrical issue may have been the cause of a small fire at Swansons Nursery (at 97th and 15th) in the early hours of Monday morning.

The SFD reports that flames caused damage to a section of the greenhouse.

“Fire broke through the glass of the greenhouse,” Deputy Chief Tom Walsh told Q13 Fox News. “It was extinguished pretty quickly. I would say about 15 minutes.”

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“Project X” may point to future Amazon drive-up operation on 15th

August 22nd, 2016 by Danielle Anthony-Goodwin


According to GeekWire, Amazon could be planning to open a new drive-up grocery service here in Ballard.

GeekWire reportedly uncovered permit filings that suggest the new operation will be run on the former Louie’s Cuisine of China site at 5100 15th Ave NW.

According to the reports, Amazon are keen to keep its involvement low key at this stage, referencing the project in filings with the City as “Project X”. The construction crew do not even know exactly what they are building, according to GeekWire.

“We had to sign our life away. Half the guys in there don’t even know what they are working on,” one worker told GeekWire.

According to the GeekWire reports, however, the language in the description “Project X” matches that of planning documents for the Amazon drive up grocery stores planned in the San Francisco Bay Area and also has listed the same architect, Ware Malcomb.

Check out the below description of how the mysterious “Project X” officially works from the City of Seattle’s planning documents:

When placing an online order, customers will schedule a specific 15-minute to two-hour pick up window. Peak time slots will sell out, which will help manage traffic flow within the customer parking adjacent to the building.

When picking up purchased items, customers can either drive into a designated parking area with eight parking stalls where the purchased items will be delivered to their cars or they can walk into the retail area to pick up their items.

Customers will also be able to walk into the retail room to place orders on a tablet. Walk in customers will have their products delivered to them in the retail room.


According to GeekWire, “Project X” is expected to be open from 7 a.m. – 10 p.m. with 15 employees working on site during peak time expected to occur between 5 and 7:30 p.m. The average wait time for customers is predicted to be approximately five minutes.

The My Ballard team will keep readers updated with any new developments as they come to light.

Photo and image courtesy of GeekWire.


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BHS film makers screen documentary about Loyal Heights Elementary expansion

August 22nd, 2016 by Danielle Anthony-Goodwin

Recent Ballard High graduate Jaya Flanary will be screening her documentary entitled “Mega School” on Wednesday, August 24, at 7 p.m. in the Ballard High School Auditorium (1418 NW 65th St).

Flanary, along with Ballard High School student co-producers Sophie DeGreen and Ruby Anderson, created the 30 minute documentary to inform the community about the issues relating to the expansion of Loyal Heights Elementary school.

“Loyal Heights Elementary is being expanded, and construction will start by 2017. The site plan is not fit for the less than 3 acres of land, and the expansion is too big for the student body projection for many years to come,” says Flanary.

According to Flanary, many community members have invested over a year of their time and energy trying to compromise with the district, but the plan is still too large, and is cutting the playground by almost 50%.

Flanary and Anderson both attended Loyal Heights and are very passionate about the issues involved with the expansion.

“My hope for this documentary is not only to create a dialogue in the community in order to change the plan, but also acknowledge the many LHE neighbors who have dedicated so much to this cause. I don’t believe the current plan will create the heartwarming environment I so much enjoyed as a child,” says Flanary.

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Development Update August 22: Subdivisions, units and row houses

August 22nd, 2016 by Danielle Anthony-Goodwin

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


6731 Alonzo Ave NW


A Land Use Application has been submitted to subdivide one development site into two unit lots. The construction of residential units is under Project #6480872. 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.

8559 Mary Ave NW


A Land Use Application has been submitted to subdivide one parcel into 21 unit lots (Full Unit Lot Subdivision). The construction of residential units is under Project #6486960. 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. Environmental review has been conducted under 3019528.


2000 NW 61st St

A Land Use Application has been approved to allow a 3-story rowhouse building containing 6 units. Parking for 6 vehicles to be provided. Existing structure to be demolished.

Appeals of the above decision must be received by the Hearing Examiner no later than 9/5/2016.

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What’s on this weekend

August 19th, 2016 by Danielle Anthony-Goodwin

Enjoy the weekend in Ballard at these fantastic events!

FRIDAY, August 19

SATURDAY, August 20

SUNDAY, August 21

    • Ballard Corners Park Work Party from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. at 17th Ave NW and NW 63rd St. All are welcome to assist in preparing the garden for the Seattle Summer Parkways event.
    • Ballard Farmer’s Market along Ballard Ave from 10 a.m.- 3 p.m.
    • Free Summer Concerts at Ballard Locks at 2 p.m. featuring the Altaeus Woodwind Quintet.
    • Live Music
      • Open mic at Conor Byrne Pub (5140 Ballard Ave NW) sign-up at 7:30 p.m.
      • Sonny and the Sunsets with Boots to the Moon and guests at the Sunset Tavern (5433 Ballard Ave NW) at 8 p.m. Tickets $12.
      • The Highwaymen-Tribute to Nelson, Cash, Jennings with Country Dave’s Merle Tribute at Tractor Tavern (5213 Ballard Ave NW) at 8 p.m. Tickets $10.

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Seattle Public Schools bell times set to change this year

August 19th, 2016 by Danielle Anthony-Goodwin

Seattle Public Schools is reminding local families that bell times will be changing this upcoming 2016-17 school year.

According to the district, the change in school start times is designed to improve academic outcomes for secondary students.

They are providing a list of resources on their district website, from child care and nutrition, to after school activities and safety and security, to help families make the transition.

SPS has also prepared this video to provide information about the changes:

The district recognizes the challenges families face and has identified resources to help as they restructure their schedules, including potential effects on before and after school childcare, after school activities and nutrition programs.

The updated bell schedule is posted online and lists specific bell times for each school.

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Hundreds flock to Reuben’s to pet baby goats

August 19th, 2016 by Danielle Anthony-Goodwin

Hundreds of locals turned up at Reuben’s Brews on Thursday to have a brew with some special little visitors.

Puget Sound Goat Rescue hosted the event at Reuben’s to encouraged locals to meet, pet and even adopt baby goats.


Over 7,000 people had submitted their RSVP to the event and hundreds attended to show their support.

Sixty tickets were given out every half hour and attendees could spend 5 minutes with the little ones.

Visitors who fell in love with the goats had the opportunity to fill out an adoption application and after a home check are able to take the critters home at a later date.

Did you attend and take some great photos? Email them to

Photo courtesy of KIRO 7 News. 

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Fecal Fest starts next week at Woodland Park Zoo

August 18th, 2016 by Danielle Anthony-Goodwin

It is nearly that special time of year again where locals can get their hands on some of the famous Zoo Doo (a.k.a compost from Woodland Park Zoo) during the much anticipated Fall Fecal Fest.

This year the zoo is celebrating 31 years of offering, as they put it, “the richest, most prized compost in the Pacific Northwest.”

In case you weren’t aware, Zoo Doo is composed of species feces contributed by the zoo’s non-primate herbivores such as hippos, giraffes, mountain goats, tapirs and more, and is perfect to grow veggies and annuals.

Locals can now pick up the prized doo in 5, 32 and 50 gallon amounts with a maximum of 100 gallons per recipient. Unfortunately, Woodland Park Zoo reports that truck loads are not available this fall.

Bedspread, however, (the zoo’s premium composted mulch) will be available by the truck load. Bedspread is a combination of Zoo Doo, sawdust, and large amounts of wood chips and is used to cushion perennial beds and woody landscapes including rose beds, shrubs and pathways.

The annual spring and fall Fecal Fests always attract local gardeners to enter a bid to purchase the exotic, highly-desired Zoo Doo and Bedspread that Dr. Doo, also known as the “Prince of Poo,” the “GM of BM” or the “Grand Poopah,” has been piling all winter.

Dr. Doo’s private reserve of Worm Doo, usually reserved for the zoo’s greenhouse, will also be sold this spring. Worm Doo is worm castings made from Woodland Park Zoo’s Zoo Doo compost and zoo coffee grounds.

According to Woodland Park Zoo, it is an exceptional rich soil and microbial diverse soil amendment recommended for seedlings, potted plants or in the garden. It’s been pooped once by exotic herbivores and pooped again by compost loving worms.

Worm Doo will be sold in pint sized containers at the ZooStores for $10 starting August 22 with limited supply.

How do you get your hands on some Zoo Doo you may ask? Locals must enter the online lottery for their chance to purchase the prized doo. Entries will be accepted from August 22 through September 14.

Entries will be selected randomly for as many entrants possible, and only selected entries will be contacted for pick up between September 24 – October 15. Phone and mail orders are not accepted. Click here to check out prices for the different types/amounts.

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Seattle Animal Shelter reminds pet owners to watch out for weekend heat

August 18th, 2016 by Danielle Anthony-Goodwin

When temperatures soar – as they are expected to do in Seattle late this week and over the weekend – the hot weather can create hazards for pets. The Seattle Animal Shelter is reminding pet owners to take proper precaution this weekend, and, for those attending the annual Hempfest event, please leave your pets at home.

Pets, besides service animals, are not allowed at Hempfest. There is no safe place to leave or secure pets at the event, and the Seattle Animal Shelter warns pet owners against leaving animals in vehicles.

Cars in direct sunlight can reach fatal temperatures within just a few minutes, and on hot days, even dogs left in the shade with the windows cracked are at risk of brain damage or death.

The shelter also reminds pet owners that a Washington law that went into effect in 2015 makes it a violation just to leave an animal unattended in a vehicle or enclosed space, if the animal could be harmed or killed by exposure to excessive heat or cold, lack of ventilation or lack of water.

Penalties under the new law are in addition to potential animal cruelty charges. The Seattle Animal Shelter’s humane animal law enforcement officers responding to calls about animals left in hot cars will utilize all means necessary to access vehicles to remove the animals.

If you are bringing your service animal to Hempfest, the shelter reminds you to make sure it is not exposed to toxic substances and be sure that it has access to plenty of water during the festival.

The Seattle Animal Shelter offers the following tips for protecting pets during hot weather:

  • Never leave your animal tethered or kenneled in direct sunlight. Provide a shady area for retreat, such as a dog house, porch or shady tree, and always provide access to plenty of cool water.
  • If you leave animals indoors, open the screened windows, keep a fan running, provide plenty of water, and if possible, leave them in a cool location.
  • Never leave dogs or cats unattended in a closed, locked vehicle. Animals do not perspire like humans; they cool themselves by panting. Vinyl, leather and even cloth seats in vehicles get hot under animals’ feet and prevent them from perspiring through their paws.
  • If you must travel with your pet, carry water. If a trip requires you leave your pet in the car at any point, think about saving that for another day. It’s not worth the risk.
  • Avoid overexerting your animal in hot weather. Exercise is fine when taken in moderation, but obesity, old age, underlying disease and previous bouts of heat stroke can predispose an animal to the condition.
  • For birds, take caution and place the bird’s cage away from direct sunlight during the intense heat of the afternoon. Provide water and fruits and vegetables with high moisture content.

If you see an animal that may be in need of assistance, or if you have questions, contact the Seattle Animal Shelter at 206-386-7387 (PETS).

Information is also available online.

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Burke Gilman set for temporary detour in Fremont

August 18th, 2016 by Danielle Anthony-Goodwin

Cyclists, runners and walkers on the Burke-Gilman Trail in the Fremont area will start using a short detour starting August 22 through mid-fall.

The trail reroute will be in place by 9 a.m. on Monday, August 22, to allow contractor crews working for WSDOT to use a 200-foot section of the trail while repainting portions of the State Route 99 Aurora Avenue Bridge.

The detour will be put in place as a section of the trail will be used by Hercules Painting to stage more than a dozen pieces of large equipment necessary for repainting the 85-year-old Aurora Avenue bridge. The area immediately west of the Lake Washington Rowing Club is the only suitable location for the equipment.

Cyclists and pedestrians will follow a detour onto North Northlake Way in front of the Lake Washington Rowing Club. A marked detour across the west end of a U-Park parking lot will connect trail users between the existing path and North Northlake Way.

Check out the map of the detour route below:


Cyclists and pedestrians are encouraged to stay on the marked detour and use caution while crossing the parking lot, which will remain open to drivers. In addition, rowers will be nearby moving long boats in and out of the rowing club’s boat storage area.

“Finding a detour through this area that works for trail users and minimizes the effects on cyclists has been very challenging,” said WSDOT Project Engineer Dave Lindberg. “This detour keeps trail users close to the existing trail and minimizes their exposure to more heavily traveled streets.”

WSDOT reports that the detour route was developed through close collaboration with the city of Seattle and the Cascade Bicycle Club. WSDOT also consulted local businesses and property owners.

The original detour route via N 34th St was shelved in early July after the Cascade Bicycle Club expressed concerns about heavy traffic and construction on the street.

“We want to thank WSDOT for partnering with us and their persistence in developing a detour that works for bike riders and trail users of all ages and abilities,” said Cascade Bicycle Club Executive Director Elizabeth Kiker.

The detour is scheduled to be in place through Oct. 31.

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Ballard Corners Work Party on this Sunday

August 18th, 2016 by Danielle Anthony-Goodwin

Volunteers are needed for the Spring work party at Ballard Corners Park (17th Ave NW and NW 63rd St) this Sunday, August 21, from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. rain or shine.

The team will be weeding and getting the park in shape for the Seattle Summer Parkways event on August 27.

“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.

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Populuxe Brewing announces plans to expand to larger space

August 17th, 2016 by Danielle Anthony-Goodwin

Populuxe Brewing officially announced its plans to move into a new, larger space next door to their current space at 826 NW 49th Street.

The move to the 4000 square foot space, which was once home to Ballard’s infamous Oddvars Automotive, will feature a 7-barrel brewhouse, 15-barrel fermenters, a larger taproom with 20 taps, a sizeable beer garden with food trucks and cornhole, more seating, and large screen TV’s for showing Sounders and Seahawks games and other major events.

At the new location, local beer fans will also be able to enjoy Populuxe seven days a week! The new taproom will be open Monday – Thursday from 3 p.m. to 9 p.m., Friday 3 p.m. – 10 p.m., Saturday from noon to 10:00 p.m., and Sunday from 1 p.m. to 8 p.m.

“We are excited for the next chapter,” said Charbonnier. “Our goal is to open the new space this spring, likely in March or April”.

Populuxe is currently working with architects and the city to design the space, but here’s what the team can tell you so far:

  • The taproom room will move from the current location to the new one, where it will be bigger, open longer hours, and have even more taps.
  • The new space will have more room, so we’ll be able to brew more beer! We’ll retain the same feel of our current space by keeping the brewery operations connected to the taproom.
  • The new space will enable us to expand our barrel-aging program, increase our bottling capacity, develop our sour beer program, create more experimental beers and include a lab for advanced quality assurance.
  • We will have a separate room to accommodate private parties.

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