Schedule is out for Summer Concerts at Locks

The initial schedule has been released for the free summer concert series at the Carl S. English Garden at the Ballard Locks, beginning the weekend of June 2nd.

The lineup shows a diverse list of local musicians with an emphasis on big band and jazz. While there is no charge for the concerts — and the musicians play pro bono — donations are accepted. The schedule may change, so the Locks asks that you check the website before you make plans.

Concerts run every Saturday and Sunday, beginning at 2 p.m., throughout the summer.

Syttende Mai to take over Ballard Thursday

It hasn’t been the happiest of days in Ballard recently, and that’s all the more reason to attend Thursday evening’s Syttende Mai — 17th of May — celebrations and parade through Ballard. The parade is the largest of its kind outside Norway, and it draws thousands of festive people across the neighborhood and beyond.

Plus, pleasant weather is in the forecast.

Let’s start with the big event, which caps a day of activities celebrating Norway’s Constitution Day. The parade will feature marching bands, drill teams, classic cars, vikings, funky floats and Scandinavian flair. It begins at 6 p.m. at the corner of NW 62nd and 24th Ave. NW. It follows 24th down to Market, heads to Bergen Place Park and turns onto Ballard Ave.

Here’s the map:

For those neighborhood newbies out there, parking is always a struggle, especially if you’re not setting up early along the route, like many families do. So plan your approach carefully. And traffic will be a nightmare if you’re trying to navigate central Ballard — there’s no way you can cross the parade route during the event.

The celebrations get underway earlier in the day. The brand new Nordic Museum will have special events for the kids from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. At noon the museum will host a (sold out) luncheon with the parade’s grand marshal, Kåre Aas, Norwegian Ambassador to the US.

From noon to 5 p.m., the Sons of Norway Leif Erikson Hall is having an open house with live music. The Lodge’s Nordic Cafe will be selling its famous smørbrød, lefse and krumkake.

Over at Bergen Place, the entertainment begins at 2 p.m. and runs until 5:45 p.m. Here’s the performance schedule.

After the parade, the annual Syttende Gay event will kick into gear at 7 p.m at the Cedar Room. The special guest this year is Cash Court from Olympia, who was featured on the Norwegian Reality Show, Alt for Norg. There’s a suggested donation of $7.

One more thing: The folks behind the Skål Beer Hall, which is coming to Ballard Ave., will have a tent at the corner Ballard Ave NW and 22nd Ave NW during the parade. They’ll have a preview of their menu, including signature lamb and pork sausages.

We’ll be attending the parade and will post photos here on My Ballard. Have fun!

Tickets go on sale for Ballard Jazz Festival at new Nordic Museum

After 10 years at the old Nordic Heritage Museum, the Ballard Jazz Festival’s main stage is moving to the new museum facility on Market St.

“The soaring concert hall with flawless acoustics will double audience capacity and elevate the listening experience for the foreseeable future,” explained an email from the festival.

Tickets are now on sale for the Friday, May 18th main stage concert featuring Clarence Penn & Penn Station along with the Oskar Stenmark Quartet. The Ballard Jazz Walk gets underway on Saturday, May 19th with an afternoon, all-ages show at Peddler Brewing Company, followed by many concerts throughout the Old Ballard area.

Lots more details on the Ballard Jazz Festival website.

Last chance to sign up for spring sports at Ballard Boys & Girls Club

Registration is still open for spring sports at the Ballard Boys & Girls Club — but not for long.

The deadline to register for tee ball (ages 4-6) and machine pitch baseball (ages 7-9) is tomorrow (Tuesday). For soccer by Happy Feet (ages 4-6), the deadline is Thursday.

Girls Volleyball (3-5th grade) and Flag Rugby by Atavus (1st-6th grades) are open for sign-ups until early April.

You can register online right here.

Events: Leif to Leif Run, St. Patrick’s Day, Night Out, Blessing of the Fleet and more

There are a lot of events on our Ballard calendar over the next few days, and here are a few of the standouts. Have fun out there, and enjoy the weather!

Thursday, March 15th

BALLARD NIGHT OUT – It’s the third Thursday of the month, and that means it’s time for Ballard Night Out. Artists are showing at several Ballard venues from 6-9 p.m. — including at Verity Credit Union, with live music, from 6-8 p.m. and an afterparty at Substation at 9 p.m.

DAMN YANKEES – The Ballard High School musical kicks off tonight, Friday and Saturday at 7:30 p.m. at BHS. Adults $15, students $10 — and tickets often sell out for several nights. Performances also scheduled for March 22-24th. Details and ticket info here.

MOISTURE FESTIVAL – It’s back at Hale’s Palladium for the 15th year. Jugglers, chair climbers, musicians, comedians, bubble guys, clowns, burlesque artists, aerialists… it all kicks off tonight and runs through April 8th. Details here.

Friday, March 16th

Both the Damn Yankees musical and Moisture Festival (above) are running tonight.

Saturday, March 17th

LEIF TO LEIF RUN/WALK – The annual tradition kicks off with registration at 8 a.m. at Leif Erikson Hall and the 5K run/walk at 9 a.m. Head down to the other Leif on Shilshole, then back. Norwegian flag and a waffle for participating! Adults $10, kids $5. Proceeds will be shared with the Ballard Senior Center. Registration forms are here (.pdf)

NORWEGIAN HERITAGE DAY – After the run, the Tastes of Norway/Norwegian Cultural and Heritage Day gets underway at 10 a.m. at Leif Erikson Hall. Live music, dance, yummy food, traditional crafts, presentations and more — you can even judge pickled herring. Local genealogy researchers will answer questions about your Norwegian ancestors. The free event runs to 3 p.m.

ST. PATRICKS DAY IN BALLARD – Ballard is known for beer, so naturally this is a big day in the neighborhood. Conor Byrne will feature live music and food trucks all day. Lucky Envelope Brewing, Obec Brewing, Populuxe Brewing, Reuben’s Brews and Stoup Brewing are teaming up for the first annual “St. Pat’s Parade O’ Pints,” with specialty beers, commemorative glassware, t-shirts, food trucks and live entertainment. More details here.

BLOOD DRIVE – Always a good cause, the Bloodworks mobile unit will be parked at Ballard First Lutheran Church (2006 NW 65th Street) from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. and again from noon to 3 p.m.

Sunday, March 18th

BLESSING OF THE FLEET – For nine decades, Ballard First Lutheran Church has blessed the men and women who harvest the seas, praying for their safety. The annual Blessing of the Fleet gets underway at 2 p.m. at Fishermen’s Terminal. All are welcome, and a reception follows.

Have an event? Add it to the My Ballard events calendar.

Running of the Beavers fundraiser for Ballard High on March 31

CORRECTED: Our apologies, we posted the wrong date. The run is March 31st, not this weekend.

The annual fundraiser for the Ballard High School Foundation, the Running of the Beavers will start and finish at Golden Gardens on March 31st.

The 5K event kicks off at 9 a.m., and you can register right here. Pre-race packet pick-up will be available the Friday before at BHS from 4-7 p.m. Packet pick-up and registration will also be available on race day at the start line starting at 7:30 a.m.

The Ballard High School Foundation is a non-profit charitable organization that helps fund many of the school’s programs and activities.

What’s on this weekend in Ballard and beyond

Ballard’s Station 18 (above) will join other Seattle fire stations in an open house for Neighbor Day on Saturday. Here’s the full weekend lineup, and have fun out there…

Friday, Feb. 9

  • SALT & STRAW – The Portland-based ice cream sensation opens its Old Ballard shop (5420 Ballard Ave.), 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily.
  • BALLARD HULLABALOO – Called “the biggest Ballardest clearance sale under one roof,” the Ballard Hullabaloo runs from 6-9 p.m. at the Leif Erikson Lodge. DJ Lovinz spins the tunes and Stoup Brewing provides the beverages.
  • Live music:
    • SEAN JEWELLThe Substation hosts Sean Jewell, who will be celebrating the big 4-0 with this massive two-night bash with some of their favorite artists, $10, 7:30 p.m.
    • DEBAUCHERAUNTESConor Byrne hosts the cabaret-folk group the Debaucherauntes with a klezmer-heavy show flanked by the Pickpocket Revue and the Mighty Dreadful Stringband, $10, 8 p.m.
    • THE HELIO SEQUENCEThe Tractor hosts The Helio Sequence, Headwaves and I Will Keep Your Ghost, 9 p.m., $20

Saturday, Feb. 10

  • BALLARD HULLABALOO – Day 2 of the big sale, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Leif Erikson Lodge.
  • NEIGHBOR DAY – Tour your local fire station from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. as part of Seattle Neighbor Day. Fire Station 18 (1521 NW Market St.), Fire Station 21 (7304 Greenwood Ave N) and Fire Station 35 (8729 15th Ave NW) are all participating.
  • BALLARD ART WALK – Stroll though the streets of Ballard and explore our community businesses as they feature works from local artists. 6-9 p.m. Here are this month’s details.
  • BALLARD HIGH FILM FESTIVAL – One of the best high school filmmaking programs in the country, Ballard High School is holding its annual festival and fundraiser. 7 p.m. in the Ballard High auditorium, $10 adults, $5 students.
  • Live music:
    • SEAN JEWELLThe Substation hosts Sean Jewell, who will be celebrating the big 4-0 with this massive two-night bash with some of their favorite artists, $10, 7:30 p.m.
    • TEN MILES WIDEThe Tractor hosts Ten Miles Wide, Devils Hunt Me Down, Chrome Lakes and Pachinko Royale, $10, 9 p.m.
    • STRONG SUITConor Byrne hosts Strong Suit and Guests, 9 p.m., $8/10

Sunday, Feb. 11

  • FARMERS MARKET – The Ballard Farmers Market will be in its usual spot (Old Ballard) at the usual time (10 a.m. to 3 p.m.)
  • PETIT TROLL – Over at the Fremont Sunday Market, celebrate the spirit of Mardi Gras with a flashy tiny parade. Neon Brass Party will crash the event, towing “mini-glittering Mardi Gras themed floats” down the road. 12-2 p.m., 3401 Evanston Ave. N.
  • Live music:
    • THE BLOOMSThe Sunset hosts The Blooms, Black Ferns, Sweet Jesus, 8 p.m., $8

See events all week long in our Ballard events calendar, where you can also submit your own community events. Have a great weekend!

(Photo from Seattle Fire of the Ladder 8 crew at Station 18).

Running out of parking, Backfire Moto moves motorcycle meetups to Sodo

Once a month during spring, summer and fall, hundreds of motorcyclists descended on Ballard. They were drawn to 17th Ave. NW and Leary, originally the site of the 2 Bit Saloon. They parked in long rows and packed Shelter Lounge, NW Peaks Brewery and other surrounding watering holes.

For those who didn’t know about Backfire Moto, it was a loud, mysterious event. For those who came every month, it was family.

But now as Backfire Moto approaches its tenth year — and the number of attendees continues to grow — the event is moving to Sodo.

“Why move from Ballard? Well, if you didn’t notice that the amount of available parking in Ballard for attendees was dwindling each year for the past few years, many of us did,” explain the event’s founders Sean Dunlap, Sean Westlake and Todd Werny. “Unfortunately, this new parking situation has progressively made it harder for our attendees to show up and park for the event.”

They said they were also concerned about the Missing Link’s impact on parking as well as future developments in the area. So beginning with their first spring meetup in March, Backfire Moto will be held outside “The Shop” along 6th Ave. S in Sodo.

“We are sorry, but this change is beyond our control and the new location is going to be awesome,” they write. “We would like to thank Shelter Lounge and NW Peaks Brewery, Stone’s German Garage, Lux, Filson and all their friendly staffs for their support over the years. We will always remember their warm hospitality to our moto-community!”

The spring opener of Backfire Moto is March 21st at 4 p.m.

(Photos by Todd Werny on Backfire Moto’s Facebook page. Thanks Ian for the tip!)

Briefs: New Nordic, Hullabaloo, Hale’s Ales, Stoup, Sloths, Goodwill and more

A few quick blurbs from around the Ballard area…

NEW NORDIC: The Nordic Museum’s address has officially switched to the new location, and the staff moved into the new digs on Friday (photo above from @NordicMuseum). The building opens to the public on May 5th.

HULLABALOO – The Leif Erikson Lodge will host “the biggest Ballardest clearance sale under one roof” this Friday evening and Saturday morning. “Find treasures galore at heavily discounted prices” and support local shops, explains the event listing here.

BURGLAR STEALS CAMERA: Early in the morning of Jan. 30th in the 1400 block of NW 63rd St., police say a man gained access to a locked condo building, tore the surveillance camera off the wall and walked away with it. Nothing else was reported stolen. Police are examining the video.

CRIME CHECKS: We spoke with SPD’s Mark Jamieson to check on a few ongoing cases. He said the investigation into the assault at Salmon Bay Park is still active, but he has nothing new to share. He said there’s no new information on the search for the Ballard dumpster fires suspect — or the search for Chris Burrus, suspected of setting a man on fire last November.

HALE’S ALES: As we reported in December, 34-year-old Hale’s Ales is promising big changes this year to compete with newer breweries. “We’re rolling out new packaging. The website is getting an overhaul. We’re brewing new beers. The taproom is getting a makeover,” explained Mike Hale in an email this week. “We’re working on becoming the most happening spot in Fremont, featuring events and musicians in our pub on a weekly basis.”

MOTHER OF EXILES: As part of the “Beer Trumps Hate” campaign initiated by Rooftop Brewing following the 2017 election, Stoup Brewing has brewed Mother of Exiles IPA. Proceeds from the sale of this beer will benefit The Refugee Women’s Alliance (REWA) during the month of February. Stoup will host an event tomorrow (Tuesday) evening.

SLOTHS: Those Woodland Park Zoo sloth cubs have opened their eyes, and there’s video.

HOLMAN PEDESTRIAN OVERPASS: The city has finished its design work for the new crosswalk on Holman Road at 13th Avenue NW, near Dick’s Drive-In, that will keep the current pedestrian overpass instead of tearing it down. PhinneyWood has the details.

TRANSFER STATION: In partnership with Goodwill, the North Transfer station in Fremont (1350 N 34th St.) has opened a “reuse donation center” — a drop-off location for reusable household goods and electronics. It’s also opened a “community education room” with interactive exhibits. Seattle Public Utilities will be holding an open house there on Saturday between 10 a.m. and noon.

We have a lot more community events on the Ballard calendar — and there’s always something going on in the My Ballard Facebook group, which recently surpassed 2,500 members.

New to Ballard? Meet neighbors and community groups over beer

The population of Ballard is rising just as fast as the new housing developments. While our new Ballard neighborhood guide and Facebook group are a good start for new residents, there’s no substitute for meeting people — especially if it’s over some of Ballard’s best beer.

Sustainable Ballard and the Ballard Alliance are holding a “Get Plugged Into Ballard” event at Stoup Brewing tomorrow (Tuesday) night. “[It] offers our residents, business owners and their employees a chance to meet one another and learn more about the ways in which they can become more involved and engaged in the Ballard community,” organizers explain.

Lots of community groups from the neighborhood will be in attendance, including the Ballard Food Bank, Groundswell NW and KBFG Radio, to name a few. There will be music, snacks and a free complimentary beverage for the first 100 guests.

The event will run from 6-8 p.m. in the upstairs area of Stoup Brewing at 1108 NW 52nd St.