News blog for Seattle's Fremont neighborhood


Entries from July 2010

Tour de Fat Saturday at Gas Works Park

July 30th, 2010 by master

Only one lucky Seattleite (or someone who lives in the area) will receive “a New Belgium, fully-loaded, hand-crafted, Fort Collins-built commuter bike” on stage in the closing ceremony of the Seattle stop of the 13-city Tour de Fat in return for taking the leap of donating his/her gas-guzzling vehicle to benefit a nonprofit; but more than 4,000 people and their families are expected to descend on Gas Works Park for the full day of events, including a bike parade.

The ride is free, but a $5 donation goes toward bicycle and environmental charities – and you receive a beer in return for your token that’s good for next year’s tour too.

Image courtesy of New Belgium

So, the last thing you want to do is drive your car in the surrounding streets. Bike! But if you do, try to print out this form and drop it off at the registration tent so you don’t have to wait in line.

Here’s the schedule, starting at 9 a.m.:

9: Bike Parade Registration
10: Bike Parade
11: Performances Begin
1:30: Funeral procession for the car belonging to the Car-for-Bike Trade volunteer
3:30: Car-for-Bike Trade Celebration
4: Curtain Closes

On the web site, New Belgium lays out “The Ten Commandments of the Tour de Fat.” We think No.4 is especially apropos for a neighborhood that hosts the Solstice Parade:

Thou shall come as a participant not a spectator: It’s a costumed celebration of human-powered transportation. Muscles not motors, coasters, v-brakes and rotors. Come in your favorite alter ego, because when everybody’s weird, no one is.

Maybe next year, you too can see if you can take the plunge and apply for the trade and extol the virtues of why you think you could go car-free on video.

The chosen few become shining examples pro-bike commuting culture:

By agreeing to trade your polluting car for a new bike and committing to sparkle motion, human-powered transport, on stage at Tour de Fat, you become an inspiration to the congregation and beyond. Your vehicular cleansing is filmed, as are your car-free trials and triumphs over the following year, causing thousands to idolize your efforts and begin commuting by bike (we hope).

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New 46th Street mural vandalized

July 30th, 2010 by master

The 46th Street Mural, which hasn’t even seen its final details, was vandalized Wednesday night, a tipster told us. The words “Not Art” were painted in big black letters over parts of the mural. The picture below was taken Thursday morning and sent to us.

By the time we arrived yesterday afternoon, there was no sign of damage.

The issue of vandals striking the mural came up in the comments of our story that ran when a winner for the design was chosen. Leah Eister-Hargrave, 46th Street Mural Committee member, explained how repairs will happen:

Urban Artworks is responsible for maintenance of the mural for one year August 2010-August 2011, after this initial year, maintenance will be addressed by the 46th Street Mural Project committee with negotiations with Urban Artworks to handle any needed touch-ups. A contingency fund will be set up to address any costs associated with the maintenance. A notification system regarding any tagging or defacement will be set up through local community groups, such as FAWN, that have weekly walks through the neighborhood for just such purposes. A detailed record of all paints used and where within the mural they are used will be kept while the mural is being painted. Through continued coordination of our core members of the steering committee and these aspects of care and handling, we feel we can keep the mural beautiful for the neighborhood.

Meanwhile, painting continues apace. This was the first we’d seen of the painted columns:

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Buckaroo closing? Moving?

July 29th, 2010 by master

We – I – haven’t seen the signs, but readers are e-mailing us with reports of seeing signs/flyers on Fremont Avenue North announcing the imminent closure and moving of Buckaroo Tavern from its longtime home at 4201 Fremont Ave. N.

Photo credit: Kurt Schlosser

Those getting off the No.5 bus at 41st Street and Fremont Avenue North have seen signs that state that the landlord refused to renew their lease and they will be closing on September 17.

Another reader sent us a link to a blog that has a lot of information we have not verified yet; but if what he writes is accurate, then the Buckaroo will continue to live, but down at the bottom of the hill.

According to its history:

The Fabulous Buckaroo Tavern was established in 1938, on the ground floor of a two-story building that was built in 1908. Between 1908 and 1938 a butcher shop and a grain store amongst other businesses operated in this location. The current owners (Keith & Donna Morey) bought The Fabulous Buckaroo Tavern in 1984, and are only the third owners of this tavern since 1938.

What are you hearing, readers?

We’ll try to find out more for you, too.

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Aurora Southbound closures today

July 27th, 2010 by master

Fresh from SDOT:

Crews from the Seattle Department of Transportation will be mowing overgrowth along southbound Aurora Avenue North this morning, from W. Raye Street to W. Galer Street, from about 9 a.m. to no later than noon. There will be a rolling closure of the curb lane to allow crews to work safely. Bus stops will be left open.

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Nickerson Street Diet: Day 1

July 26th, 2010 by master

This was supposed to be the first day of work on the controversial Nickerson Street diet. But as of 11am, there was no sign of any work being done at all.

SDOT update at 2:30pm: The contractor plans to mobilize today and set up the no parking signs. Either this afternoon or tomorrow they will begin preliminary layout of the new channelization.  Once they have completed the preliminary layout, SDOT will review and approve the layout prior to the permanent pavement markings.  Grinding or removal of the existing pavement markings and installation of the permanent pavement markings are scheduled to begin on Monday, August 2.

The first phase of work also involves putting in new concrete panels at Etruria Street and new curb ramps in various locations. Then, crews will resurface the asphalt pavement on Nickerson between Etruria Street and 4th Avenue North. Once the paving project is finished, Nickerson will get a facelift that has divided the community.

The scene today.

Between Warren Avenue N and 13th Avenue W, the new roadway will have only one driving lane in each direction and a center two-way turn lane. There will be an uphill bicycle lane, and a downhill sharrow. Pedestrian crossing improvements, including new marked crosswalks, will be installed at 12th Avenue W, Cremona Street, and Dravus Street.

Normal working hours will be between 7am and 4pm. Grinding off the top layer of asphalt and repaving of the roadway is expected to occur at night and is scheduled to take a total of 3 days during the first and second weeks in August. Here is the work schedule:

  • July 26 until first week of August – New concrete panels at Etruria Street and new curb ramps in various locations
  • Two days during the first week of August – Asphalt grinding (pavement removal)
  • First and second weeks of August — Roadway base repairs and utility adjustments
  • One day later in the week of August 9 – 13: Asphalt pavement overlay
  • First three to four weeks of August – Remove and replace channelization/pavement striping
  • Last part of August – Finalize work and clean up

You can follow the project on SDOT’s webpage.

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Fremont Neighborhood Council Meeting tonight

July 26th, 2010 by master

The Fremont Neighborhood Council meets tonight at 7 p.m., at the History House, 790 N. 34th St. Come to hear the latest on the trolley bus system evaluation from Chris O’Claire. Changes affect routes that pass through Fremont.

There will also be a follow-up on the Fremont Fair.

All Fremont residents are eligible to join, and all members are eligible to serve on the board. Residents are defined by these boundaries: the Canal on the south, 8th Ave. N.W. on the west, North 50th Street on the north, and Stone Way on the east.

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Saturday: Community Painting Day for 46th St. Mural

July 23rd, 2010 by master

Would-be Michelangelos: come out Saturday between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. to the 46th Street Mural Project and help make the wall under Aurora beautiful in this first “Community Painting Day.”

Sign up on the Google docs spreadsheet.

Painting began in a few weeks ago.

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Rain City Video Fremont location closing…eventually

July 21st, 2010 by master

Workers at the Fremont branch (464 N. 36th St.) of Rain City Video don’t know when the end is coming, so don’t ask. But in the store and online, they’re telling you that their vast library of 20,000 DVDs is for sale, so buy, buy, buy before the store goes bye, bye, bye.

Deals are sweet at the store, where I couldn’t resist scooping up the entire second season of “Alias” for $12. (Movies are $9.95 or $12.95 for Blu-Ray.) I bought “The Best of Kids in the Hall” and “Resident Evil” too. Total cost: $28. It’s not like I need more movies, but maybe it was the guilt of being such an avid Netflix customer, which has to account for some of the demise of the neighborhood video/DVD store (I’m sure Redbox and others of that ilk don’t help either). The other two Rain City locations on Market Street and Sunset Hill aren’t closing.

It’s been forever since I’ve been in a video store. I miss the selections, the way the staff filters for the customers. I love sections like “Martial Arts/Psychotronique Internacional” or “Directors Showcase” or “Arts & Artists, Beats & Lits” with the regrettable “Henry & June,” but at least I know it’s there.

So, go now and support Fremont’s Rain City while you can. Hidden treasures await.

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Now you can file your police report online

July 21st, 2010 by master

Seattle Police Department has just launched a new public online reporting option.

The Community Online Reporting Program (CORP) allows the public to file police reports for certain incident types (Property Destruction, Car Prowls, Auto Accessories, Theft of Property (under $500), and Identity Theft) over the internet.

This service will allow the public to file a report at a time that is best for them without having to wait for an officer to respond or call them back. The public will be able to print a temporary copy of the report as soon as they submit it. The report will be reviewed by police personnel, and, once approved, the filing person will receive an email with a copy of the final report attached. The report will transfer directly into the Seattle Police Department records management system and receive the same investigation and statistical analysis as if the report had been filed by an officer.

This option is for low level property crimes only. It does not replace 911 or the non-emergency number. If the caller feels that they are in danger, or the crime just happened, or the suspect may still be there, 911 is still the best option. The Community Online Reporting Program is an option for people that want to report a low level theft, but do not necessarily need an officer to respond in person.

The web-based crime reporting service can be accessed by going to the Seattle Police Department’s homepage ( and clicking the “File a Report” Quick Link.

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Tri-Chamber BBQ & Wine Tasting tonight

July 20th, 2010 by master

May not always feel like it in the morning, but by the afternoon, Seattle summer shines down on all of us, so why not bask in some of that sunshine and eat some free barbecue, beer and wine, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. with the Fremont, Wallingford and University Chambers of Commerce for their fifth annual BBQ & Wine Tasting at University House (4400 Stone Way N.), sponsored by University House (the food) and Schulze’s Sausages (beer and wine).


Support small business, buy local and register here, or just go and mingle! Don’t forget your business cards, because this is a great networking event with our adjoining neighborhoods.

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