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Calendar of Events:

High Point Farm Stand
Every Wednesday beginning July 13
4 to 7 p.m.

NewHolly Farm Stand
Every Friday beginning July 22
4 to 7 p.m.

Belltown P-Patch Yard Sale
July 23
9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Blues for Food Fest
September 3
12 noon to 8 p.m.


A message from the acting director

Summer is a busy time for Seattle Department of Neighborhoods. With the nicer weather, longer days and a bit more time on their hands, community members are connecting with each other and getting busy with neighborhood activities. And our staff is there to help.

  • Gardeners are not only working in their P-Patches, but are organizing fund-raising events and community parties to celebrate these gathering spaces.
  • Community groups are planning, building, or celebrating the completion of neighborhood projects that received support from the Neighborhood Matching Fund.
  • Community members are participating in neighborhood meetings and attending the Mayor's Town Halls and neighborhood visits all over the city.
  • In addition to the boards and commissions that administer our eight historic districts and more than 400 designated landmarks, the Citizen Advisory Committees continue meeting right through the summer advising on development projects of major city institutions.
  • Community members are flocking to their Neighborhood Service Centers to get passports, pay city utility bills and get the latest information on what is happening in the city.
  • District Councils continue to meet to discuss needs, opportunities, and issues in their neighborhoods.
  • Community organizers are hosting fun events in South Park while construction of the new bridge is happening.
  • And those neighborhoods updating their neighborhood plans are busy meeting, planning and discussing the future of their neighborhood.

It's inspiring to me how dedicated our community members are to creating a city that is beautiful, interesting, and dynamic - that they care enough to get involved in strengthening their neighborhoods. And our team is there to engage, encourage, and support their efforts.

Have a wonderful summer and enjoy all that it has to offer.

Bernie Agor Matsuno

Community celebrates completion of Santos Rodriguez Memorial Park

by Patricia Lopez, Neighborhood Matching Fund Supervisor

Over 200 children, students, community members, friends and families gathered on June 9th to celebrate the completion of upgrades made to the Santos Rodriguez Memorial Park at El Centro de la Raza. The spectacular playground and gathering spaces were unveiled, and the efforts of all the donors and volunteers who contributed to the project were celebrated. The event included dinner and presentations by children from the Jos Mart Child Development Center and Seattle Fandango Project.

Improvements were made possible with funding from various organizations along with overwhelming support of volunteers. New play structures were secured with help from a King County grant, and a $20,000 Neighborhood Matching Fund Small and Simple award provided funds to purchase supplies and materials.

Under the leadership of Professor Steve Badanes, 21 UW architecture students from the Neighborhood Design Build Studio worked with community members to design culturally appropriate spaces. Together they worked rain and shine to build a community circle and covered spaces. In addition, numerous in-kind donations were provided by local businesses for tile, building materials and consultation. Artist Linda Beaumont taught volunteers mosaic tiling which provided a burst of color and art. For all the play area improvements, there were 39 work parties, 90 community volunteers and over 3,700 volunteer hours for this project.

While significant improvements were made, there is more to come. This fall a public design process will be launched for the full 20,000 square feet of open space at El Centro de la Raza.

More than 900 volunteers spruce up Rainier Valley

By Yun Pitre, Neighborhood District Coordinator, South Region

On the weekend of April 30 and May 1st, more than 900 volunteers helped spruce up Rainier Valley. On Saturday, Starbucks employees, customers, and partners completed projects at John Muir Elementary School, Franklin High School, Cheasty Greenspace, Mount Baker Park, and Estelle Street P-Patch. The following day, residents and business owners from the Valley organized into teams to do graffiti paint-out, litter pick-up, gardening, weeding, moss removal, and staple removal from neglected kiosks. Many thanks to all the volunteers!!

Martin Luther King Business Association

Rainier Valley Youth Beautification Alliance

P-Patchers busier than bees with new community garden building

By Laura Raymond, Levy Projects Coordinator, P-Patch Community Gardening Program

Eastlake P-Patch volunteers Lisa Hummel and Tom Dreiling

As summer heats up, the buzz of activity around the many new P-Patch community gardens is louder than a P-Patch community garden beehive. Investment from the Parks and Green Spaces Levy and countless volunteer contributions paid off for three new (or improved) gardens that celebrated grand openings recently. Eastlake (2900 Fairview Ave E), Unpaving Paradise (E John St. & Summit Ave E), and the Seattle Community Farm (MLK Jr Way S & Lilac St) are all up and running. Swing by to visit and enjoy the gardens.

Meanwhile, community volunteers are hard at work to build new and expanded P-Patch community gardens at Barton Street (34th Ave SW & SW Barton St), Bitter Lake (N 143rd S and Linden Ave N), Hillman City (4613 S Lucile St), Kirke Park (7028 9th Ave NW), and NewHolly Youth and Family (32nd Ave S & S Holly Park Dr). Neighborhood volunteers are needed and welcome. Give the P-Patch office a call if you'd like to be involved (206-818-6583). Stay tuned for grand opening celebrations for these new gardens, too!

Follow us on Facebook!

Seattle Department of Neighborhoods now has a Facebook page. It's another way for us to connect with those of you in the Facebook community! Please "like" us and share your stories or comment on ours.

New web portal on city funding opportunities launched

Have an idea to enhance your community? Need help with funding to make it happen? The city of Seattle may be able to help. It offers a wide variety of funding opportunities ranging from $250 to $1.5 million to support community projects. To make it convenient for community members to learn about its diverse funding programs, the city has created a web portal which can be found at Check it out!

Two District Councils plan City Council Candidates Forum

By Christa Dumpys, Neighborhood District Coordinator, Central Region

2009 City Council Candidates Forum

The Magnolia/Queen Anne and Lake Union District Councils are collaborating on a Candidates Forum for City Council. With five City Council positions up for reelection, it provides an opportunity for district councils to do what they do best - share important and relevant information with groups and individuals in their districts. District councils meet regularly with elected officials during their monthly meetings, but the Forum will be a way for a broader audience to interact with the candidates. The date will be scheduled soon. For information, contact Christa Dumpys or Tim Durkan at 615-0509 or

Small and Simple Projects Fund to focus on emergency preparedness this fall

From power outages to full scale disasters, it's always good to have a support system in your own neighborhood. To help Seattle-ites prepare, this fall the Small and Simple Projects Fund will focus on supporting neighborhood emergency preparedness. Once the new focus is finalized in September, information on criteria, funding amounts, the application process and new deadline will be available at

Historic Hotel Ballard is open for business

By Heather McAuliffe, Coordinator, Ballard Avenue Landmark District Board

The owners of the Olympic Athletic Club have renovated the former Starlight Hotel at 5300 Ballard Avenue NW by NW Vernon Place and renamed it Hotel Ballard. Earlier this year, the Ballard Avenue Landmark District Board reviewed changes to the storefront and painting at the hotel.

The building was originally built in 1902 for the American-Scandinavian Bank, but has served as a hotel since the late 1920s. The hotel is operated separately from the club, although guests are able to access the club for a fee. The hotel opened in June.

Hotel Ballard is located in the Ballard Historic District, one of the eight historic districts staffed by our Historic Preservation team. To learn more about the city's historic districts, visit

Special Events in Seattle - promoting events that inspire and enrich

By Karen Ko, Neighborhood District Coordinator, North Region

Who plans those parade routes? Is it safe to eat street fair food? Who said you could close this street? How do neighbors know these big events are coming? Those questions and more are answered by the City of Seattle's Special Events Committee. In order to produce special events safely and successfully, this group of city and other government staff meet monthly to review applications, discuss events with promoters, producers, and neighborhood and business organizations, and sort out the details.

Seattle Department of Neighborhoods participates at these meetings on behalf of the neighborhood. What kind of impact will an event have on a neighborhood? Will neighbors be upset? If so, what could be done to ease that? Are there big supporters for this event who need to know? It is our responsibility to make sure special events work for the neighborhood, as well as for the attendees. Neighborhood notification is critical, so event organizers might attend meetings, contact bloggers, distribute flyers, or post notices. And because they know their communities well, Neighborhood District Coordinators are in a great position to advise event organizers on whom and how to notify the community.

We're glad to be at the Special Events table, helping to create a city where the celebrations are the punctuation in the prose of the neighborhoods.

Charting a plan for the growth of P-Patch community gardening

By Rich Macdonald, P-Patch Community Gardening Program Supervisor

What should P-Patch community gardening look like in five years? How can P-Patch ride the huge wave of enthusiasm in urban agriculture? These and many more questions will be answered by the P-Patch community during a consultant-directed strategic planning process this summer and fall. The P-Patch Program has grown tremendously in the last decade as has interest in food production and community gardening. The P-Patch Program and its non-profit partner, the P-Patch Trust, hope to use the strategic planning process to decide how the two will adapt to this surge in interest. Beginning in July, a consultant will be studying key documents expressing the P-Patch principles and later will organize a series of meetings to gather information and ideas from various stakeholders, including gardeners, garden leaders, city land-owning agencies, urban agriculture groups, and under-served communities. Upon completion of this process, P-Patch will know where it's going and how to get there.

Neighborhood Plan Update youth outreach invades the halls of academia with style

By Kerry Wade, Neighborhood Plan Outreach Specialist

What do theatrical masks, thought bubbles, and Polaroid printers have in common? Youth Neighborhood Plan Update outreach, that's what! Just ask the Rams of Ingraham High School - neighborhood planning can be interesting and engaging and still meaningful for kids. Recently, the Neighborhood Planning Outreach team took phase two of the Broadview/Bitter Lake/Haller Lake (BBH) Neighborhood Plan Update on the road hosting lunchtime photo booths where students were asked what necessary changes they would like to see come to the BBH neighborhood. Students sporting masks and leis shared their views via digital camera with suggestions like safer streets and crosswalks, more convenient and on-time transportation, and more sports programs, malls, and shelters for the homeless. Approximately 40 students participated in the exercise at Ingraham which just goes to show you "Rams can plan, man!"

West Seattle Neighborhood Service Center has closed

By Margaret Cesena, NPIS and Facilities Manager

Due to the 2011 Mid-Year Budget reductions, the West Seattle Neighborhood Service Center closed its doors on July 1 and consolidated with the Delridge Neighborhood Service Center (NSC). Located at 5405 Delridge Way, it is less than two miles away from the former West Seattle facility and is accessible for all West Seattle neighborhoods. It also provides all the great services that customers enjoyed at the former West Seattle location. The Delridge NSC is open Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. For information, visit We look forward to serving you at the Delridge NSC.

Invisible homelessness - how Neighborhood District Coordinators help

By Karen Ko, Neighborhood District Coordinator, North Region

According to UW student Graham Pruss who wrote his honors thesis on car camping, roughly 33% of King County's homeless population lives in their cars. And Kristine Cunningham, Executive Director of ROOTS Young Adult Shelter, reports that by extrapolating the numbers from the county-wide One Night Count, there are over 600 young people who are homeless in this city. These two circumstances are very different and point to different strategies to assist them - car campers' most immediate need is a place to park without the danger of being towed or ticketed; youth are often looking for work or training to help them move out of a shelter.

The Neighborhood District Coordinators work with the issue of homelessness as part of their role in the community. They field calls from concerned neighbors; visit with homeless youth looking for work or shelter; assist churches inquiring about establishing car camping lots; and advise local business organizations in working with homeless people. Neighborhood District Coordinators work to help all community members as needs and issues arise.

South Park breaks ground for new South Park Bridge

By Andres Mantilla, Community Capacity Manager

More than 500 community and business leaders gathered in South Park to celebrate Cinco de Mayo with a groundbreaking for the new South Park Bridge followed by a number of activities that included dancing, arts, and a traveling mariachi. Mayor McGinn and Seattle City Councilmembers highlighted the continued effort by city and community organizers to maintain South Park as a vibrant destination neighborhood for Seattle. Seattle Department of Neighborhoods will continue to work with community members and businesses to market and beautify the business corridor throughout the construction of the bridge. For more information about upcoming events and bridge updates, visit And look for the return of the popular South Park Outdoor Cinema coming in August!

Neighborhood kids scavenge BBH for positive change

By Kerry Wade, Neighborhood Plan Outreach Specialist

So if you think that neighborhood planning is just for adults, think again! During this year's plan updates of the Rainier Beach and Broadview/Bitter Lake/Haller Lake (BBH) neighborhoods, youth of all ages expressed their concerns and preferences. Most recently, students from Broadview Thomson K-8 and Ingraham High School joined in the Operation Neighborhood Dream Scavenger Hunt within the BBH urban village. Hosted by Bitter Lake Community Center, the scavenger hunt challenged kids ages 12-15 to identify areas of improvement or opportunity in the neighborhood, take a photo, and then describe in detail the impact - positive or negative - these issues have on youth and other members of the community. Look for a similar event to take place in Rainier Beach this summer.

Southeast Asian P-Patchers to become composting masters

By Rich Macdonald, P-Patch Community Gardening Program Supervisor

P-Patch Community Gardening Program, Seattle Public Utilities, and Seattle Tilth are hosting a master composter class focused on gardeners in southeast Seattle P-Patches. These gardeners are first-generation immigrants from some of the many cultures of Southeast Asia that make Seattle home. Over the many years of teaching these classes, Seattle Tilth and Seattle Public Utilities have looked for opportunities to extend this training to populations not normally reached. Focusing on some of these fabulous P-Patch gardeners is a perfect way to impart important composting skills and messages about resource conservation to gardeners who will share the knowledge in their own P-Patches. Upon graduation in early August, each participant will have completed a compost teaching experience in his/her own P-Patch.

Volunteers clean up Dr. Jose Rizal Park

By Yun Pitre, Neighborhood District Coordinator, South Region

June 4th was the annual Community Service Day for the Association of Filipino-American Engineers of Washington. Occurring at Dr. Jose Rizal Park and surrounding blocks, 16 AFEW members and neighbors cleaned the upper park, manicured the memorial area, and cleaned the bust of Dr. Rizal. This event ties in with May's volunteer day by the Association of Filipino-American CPAs in preparation for the annual August Filipino-American Music and Art Festival, all honoring Dr. Jose Rizal's legacy.

Don't get the "boot!"

By Margaret Cesena, NPIS and Facilities Manager

If you have unpaid parking tickets, watch out! Cars with four or more delinquent parking tickets will get the "boot," a wheel-locking device. Once outstanding fees are paid, vehicle owners will be able to self-release the boot and return it to five Seattle locations. Two of those locations are the University and the Southeast Neighborhood Service Centers (NSC). For more information, visit or for NSC hours.

Visit Seattle Department of Neighborhoods at

700 5th Avenue, Suite 1700
P.O. Box 94649
Seattle, WA 98124

(206) 684-0464
FAX (206) 233-5142

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