Celebrate Seattle Night Out at the RECC, on your block, and (NOT) with the Mayor (updated)

UPDATE (6:54 PM): Turns out that the Mayoral Party Bus itinerary has changed, and Ravenna is no longer one of the stops.

Via email from Steven Jones, Campaign Manager of Seattle’s Families & Education Levy:

I’ve had to make several adjustments to the itinerary, and while we’d love to stop at every block party in Seattle I’m sorry to say that it doesn’t appear we’ll have time to swing by the RECC.

I appreciate your understanding.


But the party at the RECC will still be hoppin’, because coordinator Trevor Gregg will be there.



This Tuesday, August 2, the Seattle Police Department once again encourages you and your neighbors to go play in the street together.

It’s Seattle Night Out night (part of National Night Out), “a fun event to meet your neighbors, and organize your neighborhood against crime.” And, may I add, from personal experience, eat a lot of good food.

Many block parties around the city are planned for this date or this week, including ones in our very own Ravenna. (Feel free to advertise your own in the comments below — this type of shameless promotion is certainly encouraged.)

And here are some STREET CLOSED signs created just for the occasion.

Additionally, at 6:30PM, the Ravenna-Eckstein Community Center has some fun and free activities planned:

Join Ravenna-Eckstein CC Staff at our annual National Night Out event. FREE event with entertainment provided by Nationally recognized performer and song writer Eric Ode. His upbeat, high participation programs are bubbling over with fun, interactive music, and include stories, skits, poetry, props, and puppets! Light snacks will be available.

Also stopping by the RECC on Tuesday evening will be Mayor Mike McGinn, Councilmember Tim Burgess, and a party bus-load of Families and Education Levy supporters. No word yet on what time they’ll stop by, but I’ll update this post when I find out. The Mayoral Party Bus will be staying in South Seattle tomorrow night. Here’s the schedule:

  • 6:50PM – 800 block of Thistle St., 98108
    • Description: children’s activities, live music; a city block turned into a mini golf course with artist teams designing holes.

  • 7:20PM – 8400 block of 55th Ave. S., 98118
    • Description: community event recognizing first successful drug abatement of a property in Seattle in the last 7 years.
  • 7:35PM – 3800 S. Myrtle Street, 98118 (c/o ML King Jr. Way South)
    • Description: children’s activities, live music, Asian foods, local Vietnamese singers

    Are your block’s parties always something to rave about? I’d be happy to do a round-up style post with your pictures and stories if you send them on: rebecca@ravennablog.com.

    RBCA Board Meeting tonight

    The first Tuesday of the month is upon us once again. Here’s the agenda for tonight’s Ravenna-Bryant Community Association board meeting:

    • Discussion of RBCA boundaries and 35th Ave NE
      business district
    • Discussion of Roosevelt Legislative Rezone and RBCA’s
      visit to City Council and DPD
    • Discussion of strip club(s) on Lake City Way
    • Board reports
      • Treasurer’s report
      • Committee Reports
        • Communications Committee
        • Land Use Committee
        • Transportation Committee
        • Emergency Prep Committee
      • NEDC report

    The meeting will be held at the Ravenna-Eckstein Community Center (6535 Ravenna Avenue NE) from 7-9 PM. Anyone in the neighborhood is welcome to attend.

    I would like to note that a meeting held on June 28th, assorted board members of the Wedgwood Community Council, the Maple Leaf Community Council, and the RBCA met with the owner of Pandora Adult Cabaret (8914 Lake City Way NE).

    RBCA board president, Sarah Swanberg, was the only woman present at the meeting.

    And while she was attending the meeting due to her position on the RBCA board, the Ravenna Blog would also like to thank Sarah for representing the female population of the neighborhood/NE Seattle at that meeting as well.

    Roosevelt Station 30% Design Open House (audio and documents included)


    From L to R: Map of Sound Transit's current service and future projects, stickers from the campaign to bring Light Rail INTO the Roosevelt neighborhood, and information on the Roosevelt Station

    A crowd of around 150 people attended last night’s Roosevelt Station design open house at the Ravenna-Eckstein Community Center (6535 Ravenna Ave NE), where Sound Transit staff presented the 30% completion designs for the structure and were on hand to answer questions.

    Missed the meeting, and would like the next best thing? I recommend viewing the Roosevelt 30 Percent Design Presentation while listening to the Part 1 audio. The rest of the documents, graphics, and audio from the meeting can be found below.


    A 30-minute informal open house-style period was followed by a presentation (which included a question and answer time).

    The presentation portion will be made available by Sound Transit (in PDF form), and are also found on the North Link Documents Library page.

    Future meetings about the station will include open houses at both 60% and 90% completion of the design. There will also be a meeting to outline how the construction phase will take place (this fall), and a separate meeting for those people whose property will be tunneled under as construction proceeds (once the tunnel route has been set, also this fall).


    Graphic showing the footprint of Roosevelt Station (orange) and two parcels to be used during construction to be open to development when construction is completed (yellow).

    Puget Sound transit guru Atomic Taco (his internet handle) was in the audience, live tweeting the more major points during the meeting. (You can visit his Flickr site here.) While the audio recording above and the presentation docs to follow will be useful to those who missed last night’s meeting, Atomic Taco’s and my tweets are also worth a read (and are much easier to skim through).

    What follows is a selection of our tweets during the meeting. (At the bottom of the window, hit the “Load more…” link to continue reading.)

    Ravenna-Eckstein Community Center to CLOSE [correction]

    UPDATE (Tuesday, May 24, 10:25 AM): I was told by Ravenna-Eckstein CC staff last night that the work plan for the building has changed. The floors will remain as they are, but work will be done on the building’s walls and ceilings (including the gym’s ceiling).

    Regardless of the work being done, the center will still be closed from May 30 through June 12.

    We regret the error.


    Starting next week and continuing into June, the Ravenna-Eckstein Community Center (6535 Ravenna Ave NE) will be closed while the wood floors are refinished.


    Between May 30 and June 12, the wooden floors of both the multipurpose room (pictured) and the gym will be refinished as a part of the regular maintenance of the facility.

    The center is scheduled to reopen on Monday, June 13.

    If you have a class regularly scheduled to meet during this time, please contact your instructor or the community center (684-7534) for more information about rescheduling.

    During a quick walk-through of the facility this morning, I saw one notice of relocation posted: Miss Chloe’s dance classes will be moved to the Laurelhurst Community Center (4553 41st Ave NE) on June 1, 3, 8 and 10.



    PARENTS: If you’ve got small ones in the house as I do, you may have seen the title of this post and panicked a bit. Have any ideas of where to tucker out our tykes during the closure? Especially if the weather still isn’t cooperating? Please share your leads in the comments!

    Grow your cake and eat it, too: The Ravenna Community Garden turns ONE this weekend


    This weekend, the Ravenna Community Garden (NE 68th Street and 21st Avenue NE) is celebrating its first birthday.

    Everyone is invited to the festivities, which start at 2PM today (Saturday, May 14).

    Carrot cake will be served. Natch.

    Should you be interested in bringing along a present or two to the party (or any other time), the garden organizers have a list of equipment they could use (used items are welcomed; wrapping is optional):

    • Tools: Shovels (large and small; pointed are best), Rakes (garden and leaf), Digging forks, Hand trowels, Pruners, Garden gloves (kids and adults), Wheelbarrow (1 large and 1 small), Hori Hori
    • Plants: Herbs (thyme, tarragon, lavender, sage), Perennial Flowers (Echinacea, Monarda), Rhubarb, Artichoke plants, Annual flower plants

    If partying with plants is not your thing, no worries: There’s a WORK party on from 10AM to 4PM. Plants will be planted, a tool shed will be built, and a kiosk for garden and community center news will be constructed.

    Ravenna-Bryant Community Association board meeting tonight

    It’s the first Tuesday of the month (May, in this case), so it’s time once again for a Ravenna-Bryant Community Association board meeting.

    As usual, the RBCA board is meeting at the Ravenna-Eckstein Community Center (6535 Ravenna Avenue NE) from 7-9PM.

    Topics include:

    • Reports from all our officers and committee chairs
    • Forming new committees for transportation issues, and an
    • Looking at forming a RBCA neighborhood plan.
    • Discussing who our representatives will be for the NEDC, Seattle Community Council Federation, and SPD’s North Precinct Advisory Council.
    • Per Johnson from the Wedgwood Community Council will attend to coordinate our neighborhood plans and provide general support from a neighboring community council
    • Paulo Nunes-Ueno from Children’s Livable Streets Initiative will give a 10 minute presentation

    This is a board meeting, but anyone in the neighborhood is welcome to attend.


    Along with regularly-reoccurring monthly board meetings, the RBCA also has a new homepage (ravennabryant.org). There, you can find contact information, by-laws, meeting dates, meeting minutes, and more.

    [Full disclosure: Yours truly is one of the people who maintains the website. New board member, Aaron Keating, is the other.]

    And speaking of the new homepage, draft minutes from the April 5th meeting are now available (here, on the Minutes page).

    Egg-citing morning at the Ravenna-Eckstein Community Center

    The Ravenna-Eckstein Community Center’s (6535 Ravenna Ave NE) annual egg hunt was held this morning. With the FANTASTIC weather predicted (and the 2011 Green Lake Spring Egg Hunt canceled due to budget cuts), very high turnout was expected.

    Different age groups clustered up before the event, and then proceeded to line the track around the athletic field.

    Then, at 10 AM SHARP, a whistle blew. And they were OFF!


    I talked after the hunt with Terry Burns, coordinator at the Meadowbrook Community Center. She estimated that about 500 children and adults had attended the event.

    Containers labeled like this one were ready after the hunt to receive unloaded plastic eggs and be reused for next year’s event.

    I’d say that the field and the playground were picked clean in under two minutes, easy. Way to go, youngin’s!

    Soil movers needed this week at the Ravenna Community Garden

    The Ravenna Community Garden could use your help (and your shovel) this week.

    The group is looking for a few volunteers on Tuesday and/or Friday to help move the large pile of soil into the garden. Many hands make light work, AND you could skip your push-ups for the day.

    Willing parties should show up around 5:30 PM, with shovels and wheelbarrows if they’ve got ’em, at the north end of the field behind the Ravenna-Eckstein Community Center (6535 Ravenna Avenue NE). Hope for good weather, but dress for the worst.

    For more information, contact the Ravenna Community Garden folks at ravennacommunitygarden@gmail.com, or visit ravennacommunitygarden.org.

    Really, it *is* spring. Here are some local garden events to prove it!

    [UPDATED 4:47PM – Added some Center for Urban Horticulture Events]

    Spring has, indeed, sprung. The sun’s path has crossed the equator and is headed further north everyday. (Astronomers know what season it is well before meteorologists and Seattleites, unfortunately.)

    Here are some upcoming local garden-related events you may want to attend. Just be prepared to bring along your rain poncho.

    Ravenna Community Garden

    Two April work parties are scheduled (and you can find out about future ones by visiting their website  at RavennaCommunityGarden.org):

    • Sunday, April 10th, noon to 3PM – plant cabbage in Bed #10, move dirt pile, re-position compost bins, BUILD SHED, weed and plant the herb border, install fencing around herb bed
    • Saturday, April 30th, 2 to 5PM – plant potatoes in separate containers, plant Bed #7 with root veggies, BUILD SHED, border plantings

    Anyone in the neighborhood is welcome to lend a hand in the community garden. It’s located on the northern end of the field behind the Ravenna-Eckstein Community Center (6535 Ravenna Ave NE).

    Picardo P-Patch

    The Picardo Farm Gardener Gathering date has been set for Saturday, April 9th, in the University Prep Commons Area (8000 25th Ave NE). (This meeting is really only for Picardo P-Patch plot holders. If you’d like to look into getting your own plot at Picardo [or any other p-patch in the city], you can read up on the process here.)

    Here are some agenda highlights:

    10-11AM – New Gardeners

    • Picardo history and culture
    • Expectations and gardener responsibilities
    • Mentoring program

    11-noon – Whole Garden

    • Announcements: Leadership, Straw Bale and Coffee Bag sale, post garden plant sale
    • Master Plan updates: Compost bins, orchard areas, grant proposal
    • Composting Toilet: Demonstration after the meeting
    • Food Bank gardening
    • South Field conversion to year-round gardening: process and how to get involved
    • Door prizes

    After the meeting to 2PM – New gardener orientation in the p-patch

    • Find your plot
    • Learn about the garden – composting toilet, orchard, children’s garden, toolshed, etc.

    Center for Urban Horticulture

    Over in Laurelhurst at the UW’s Center for Urban Horticulture (3501 NE 41st Street), gardening-related events ABOUND. Here are three that I would recommend:

    • Saturday, April 2nd, 9AM-2PM – Northwest Fuchsia Society Spring Plant Sale: Hardy, species, baskets & many hard to find varieties. More info at www.nwfuchsiasociety.com.
    • Saturday, April 2nd, 9AM-3PM – Garden Lovers’ Book Sale: Free and open to the public. Find a great deal on used gardening and plant books. Proceeds of the sale are used to purchase the best and newest in horticultural books and journals for the Elisabeth C. Miller Library. More info at depts.washington.edu/hortlib/index.shtml
    • Saturday, April 16th, 10:30-11:15AM – Young Gardener’s Story Time: The Magic of Seeds! Join us for a story program that starts small and grows into something amazing! After the stories, do a seed dance and plant a seed to take home. (Held monthly, through the growing season.)

    There are MANY more events in April at the Center for Urban Horticulture. Visit their Classes and Events Calendar to see them all.

    Thanks to Rebecca on facebook for the tip!


    Do YOU know of any other Ravenna-area gardening events in April? Let me know in the comments below or by email, and I shall add them to the post.

    Ravenna-Bryant Community Association Community-Wide Meeting set for Tuesday, April 5th

    After a few years of hibernation and nine months of reorganizing and rejuvenating board meetings, the Ravenna-Bryant Community Association is back in action, and holding a community-wide meeting at 7 PM on Tuesday, April 5, at the Ravenna-Eckstein Community Center (6536 Ravenna Avenue NE).

    Anyone currently living in either the Ravenna or Bryant neighborhoods here in Northeast Seattle is welcome to attend (and become members, should they choose), as well as people who have businesses within those neighborhoods.

    For a map of the RBCA boundaries, as well as those of other Northeast District community associations, visit this post on the RBCA’s website.

    Topics and speakers on the agenda include:

    • voting in old and new RBCA board members
    • updates from the Roosevelt Neighborhood Association’s Land Use Committee Chair Jim O’Halloran on the status of the properties and development around Roosevelt High School
    • how to keep rats under control
    • 520 tolling
    • Cleanscapes’ “Neighborhood Waste Reduction Rewards Project”

    The meeting is to be held in the community center’s multipurpose room, with has a maximum occupancy of about 100 people. For this reason, the organizers request that you RSVP to the meeting.

    Childcare is available for potty-trained kids. $5 for the first child, $2 for additional. Healthy snack included.

    For more information about this event, you can also visit the main event page at ravennabryant2011meeting.eventbrite.com.

    For more information about the Ravenna-Bryant Community Association, you can visit their new homepage at ravennabryant.org.


    Full disclosure: I have been attending the RBCA board meetings since August as both a community member and as a “hyperlocal journalist.” I do not plan on becoming a board member, but I do wish to help the organization grow and succeed. I have also been working on the RBCA’s new website, and advocating for greater transparency and increased communication between Northeast Seattle community organizations and the people they represent.