Ballard’s famous Lockspot Cafe is up for sale

Pam Hanson has worked at the Lockspot Cafe for 25 years, starting out as most do—behind the bar.

Ballard was a different place in the late 90s, but the essence of the Lockspot hasn’t changed, and that’s exactly how Hanson has wanted it. She sees herself as a “caretaker” of the restaurant, which has served Ballard for over 90 years.

The Lockspot, known for its fish and chips and made famous on the TV show the Deadliest Catch, is located just next to the entrance to the Ballard Locks.

“I don’t think this part of Ballard is going to go away,” Hanson said. “If I had my choice, I would love to pick somebody to take over, because I’ve seen myself as a caretaker to keep her afloat for the next generation. I’ve been here long enough that I’ve seen the next generation. Little kids I used to play peek-a-boo with, and now all of a sudden they’re bringing in their kids.”

Hanson’s husband has medical issues, and Pam says it’s time to focus her energy on him. “We’ve decided that it’s time for him to come in first instead of the restaurant. He’s put up with this place being first for 21 years now—21 blissful years by the way—and he’s an amazing man and it’s his turn.”

It’s been a difficult year for Hanson with the pandemic and over a year of construction on NW Market St.

“Like everyone else, we had to cut back to take-out only during the pandemic. Add in 14 months of street construction directly in front of us and it wasn’t easy. But not only did we survive, but business is already back to pre-pandemic levels,” Hanson said.

Last year’s major construction project on the west end of NW Market St changed the address of the Lockspot.

In a blog post earlier last summer, the City explained that the street name is changing to make things easier for emergency services.

Prior to the change, there were two intersections with the same street name: NW 54th St and NW Market St, just a mile and a half apart. Duplicate intersection or street names understandably create confusion for emergency service dispatchers and delay response time, so they’ve opted to change a small section of NW 54th St into NW Locks Place (see map below).

The new address is 3005 NW Locks Place — a more fitting address for the landmark cafe nestled next to the Ballard Locks.

For more information about the sale, contact Ozzie Kvithammer at (206) 719-6866 or email him at ozziekvithammer@gmail.com.

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