Monthly Archives: June 2010

Fremont Fair/Parade, NE 45th viaduct closure will complicate weekend traffic

Expect some traffic snarls this weekend if you’re heading to Fremont, the University District or University Village. These probably won’t affect Eastlake but you never know:

  • Fremont Solstice Fair and Parade: You have to hope it’s dry on Saturday so the body paint won’t run all over the streets of Fremont. The Solstice Fair will run from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday. The parade, with its famous naked bike riders, is at noon on Saturday. Street closures are within the following boundaries: 1st Avenue N.W. on the west; N. 36th Street on the north; Fremont Avenue N. on the east; N. 34th Street and N. Canal Street on the south. Streets will be closed starting at 1 p.m. today (Friday) and won’t be open until midnight on Sunday.
  • N.E. 45th Street viaduct closure: The western end of the N.E. 45th Street viaduct is closed so it can be replaced. It won’t reopen until September. Be aware of the closure if you’re trying to get to University Village or Sand Point. Click here to see a photo of what the viaduct looks like now with the road surface off and how it looked under construction in 1939.

Eastlake resident is named Seattle’s Sexiest Blogger

And, no, it’s not me! The winner, named last night at’s Best of the Web 2010 Awards, is Monica Guzman.

Guzman, until recently the main writer for’s Big Blog, moved to Eastlake last summer with her fiance, Jason Preston. She left the P-I last month to join a local startup, Intersect.

She tells TechFlash‘s John Cook:

“It is a little bit bittersweet to think that I just left the visible blogger position at the P-I, but more than that it is awkward.”

I sat next to Monica for a couple of years at the P-I where we both worked on the paper’s website. Monica was the one who harangued me into trying Facebook and Twitter (still using both every day), and who answered my endless questions about new websites and proper blog netiquette. I, in turn, explained old pop culture references and related how the news used to be delivered by oxcart and covered wagon, not the Internet.

Monica and Jason will be getting married later this summer. I’m taking bets that all the Tweeting at the ceremony will make them a top trending topic on Twitter!

Congratulations, Monica!

To read more of Cook’s story (he also blogged for the P-I and was once more informally crowned Seattle’s Sexiest Blogger by Dan Savage), click here.

And, a tip of the hat to the WestSeattleBlog, named the city’s best neighborhood blog at the same event. Congrats, Tracy and Patrick!

Merchants gather to talk about Eastlake business district

The Eastlake Merchants Association’s first event, an after-work wine and conversation gathering at Louisa’s, took place Wednesday evening and drew 30+ business owners.

[Full disclosure: I'm part of the Merchants Association.]

A wide-variety of businesses were represented at the event, everyone from clothing retailers to restaurateurs, massage therapists and acupuncturists, real estate officers, web designers and more. Lots of business cards were exchanged.

Conversation ranged from ideas for new neighborhood businesses to thoughts on how to generate more walking traffic and a better sense of community.

Those who have been attending the Eastlake Merchants’ meetings shared the group’s mission statement:

“Our mission is to be a unified voice for all of Seattle’s Eastlake merchants, to build a strong community through networking and present Eastlake as a vibrant community by encouraging new business and supporting each other.”

One possible project that was discussed was to dress up the street with more trees and/or flower plantings. Others talked about possible attracting a drugstore to the neighborhood. The Merchants Association is considering a website to promote local businesses.

Own or work at an Eastlake business and interested in being part of the Eastlake Merchants Association? The next meeting is 9 a.m., July 13, at Cicchetti, 121 E. Boston. 

Community invited to help Starbucks clean up after the July 4 fireworks

Starbucks is not only one of the sponsors of the Lake Union fireworks this July 4, they’re going to help clean up afterwards.

The coffee retailer announced that its employees will be cleaning up at three locations around Lake Union on Monday, July 5: the Center for Wooden Boats in South Lake Union, Gas Works Park and a location in Eastlake yet to be determined. Starbucks is partnering with the Seattle Public Utilities, CleanScapes (they haul our trash) and the Puget Soundkeeper Alliance to clean up after the holiday on land and water.

Volunteers will get lunch and a t-shirt, courtesy of Starbucks, and will be entered in a raffle. Seattle Public Utilities will donate cleaning supplies and CleanScapes will haul off the trash.

Hours for the event will be 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Monday, July 5. To sign up, go to If you’d like to clean up on Lake Union (limited space is available), go to Puget Soundkeeper Alliance’s website or call 206-297-7002.

What do you think? Where in Eastlake should Starbucks focus their efforts?

Electronics stolen from Eastlake couple while they moved

Two Eastlake residents in the 2300 block of Yale Avenue E. were the victims of a theft of electronics on Monday.

The couple was in the process of moving from Yale to another part of Eastlake. The left several packing boxes on the parking strip on Yale and forgot about them in the confusion of the move (they’d been moving for three days and were exhausted). When they returned on Tuesday to look for the boxes, they found that they had been cut and torn open and some items were missing.

The stolen items include a Sony Bravia home theater DVD player and remote, an iPod and an iPod dock. The iPod has sentimental value and the DVD player can’t be used without the remainder of the system.

The couple is willing to reward whoever comes forward with these items. If you have information or the items, contact them at The theft has been reported to Seattle Police.

Seattle Met: New Eastlake sushi restaurant to open July 2

Seattle Met reports that Sushi Kappo Tamura, the new sushi restaurant in the Ruby Condos building, will be open on July 2. 

Sushi Kappo Tamura is the new venue for sushi chef Taichi Kitamura, formerly of Kappo in Fremont. At Kappo, the menu was omakase (chef’s choice), which apparently will be the way the new Eastlake restaurant will operate. The new place will have 50 seats, Seattle Met reports.

Seattle Met notes that, with the new restaurants opening here, “Eastlake is scoring major points as a dining destination.”

Read more of Seattle Met‘s article here.

World Cup comes to Eastlake restaurants

UPDATE: This post has been changed since it was first published. More information about events at Eastlake Bar and Grill has been added.

The World Cup competition begins in South Africa on Friday and soccer fanatics are looking for places to go out and watch the games, which will be on TV here in the early morning hours.

At least two Eastlake restaurants will be open for the matches: Kristos Eastlake and the Eastlake Bar and Grill.

If you go to Kristos, 3218 Eastlake Ave. E., you’d better be rooting for Greece. Nikos Leontis, events manager at Kristos, is Greek; the restaurant serves Greek food; and Leontis expects the place will be filled with cheering Greeks when the national team takes the field against South Korea at 4:30 a.m. on Saturday morning.

“All Greeks are crazy for soccer,” Leontis says.

Leontis says they’ll close at 2 a.m., then reopen at 4 a.m. in time for the start of the game. They can’t serve liquor at 4 a.m. (state law forbids it between 2 and 6 a.m.) but they will have Greek music, pizzas, gyros and fries. And, if Greece wins, everyone in the bar will get a shot of ouzo on the house.

That sounds like a good way to celebrate!

They won’t close after the Greece-South Korea game. The U.S. will take the field against England at 11:30 a.m. and they’ll stay open all Saturday morning and be ready for that game, Leontis says. And he says Kristos will be open for every Greek game. The next one will be at 7 a.m. Thursday, June 17.

Just down the street, the Eastlake Bar and Grill, 2947 Eastlake Ave. E., says they’ll be open whenever there’s a game, starting at 7 a.m. on Friday with South Africa vs. Mexico.

They’ll have a U.S. Soccer Pep Rally Friday night at 11 p.m. ($1 Bud and Bud Lite) and they’ve installed a TV on their deck so you can watch the games outside (good weather forecast this weekend).

They’ll be featuring food specials keyed to national cuisines of some of the more popular teams. And they’ll also be having drink specials: $3.99 pints of Widmer Hefeweizen and $4 Headbut shots (that’s a mix of Bailey’s, Frangelico and a float of 151 rum).

Since there are more games in the first couple of weeks (4:30, 7 and 11:30 a.m. PDT on game days), they’ll be open early (7 a.m.) almost daily for World Cup fans. After that, the schedule tapers off but they’ll be open whenever there’s a game.

What are your plans for the World Cup? Going out to watch the games or staying in?

Heavy traffic expected in UDist on Saturday for UW Commencement

The Seattle Department of Transportation advises that there will be heavy traffic in the vicinity of Husky Stadium from noon to 6 p.m. Saturday during UW commencement exercises.

SDOT is anticipating as many as 40,000 people will attend commencement. They advise drivers to expect “heavier traffic than usual on I-5 through the University District and on SR-520.”

At 3:30 p.m., Seattle Police will close part of Montlake Boulevard between N.E. Pacific and N.E. 45th streets so cars can leave the stadium parking lots. It will be similar to what they do after a Husky football game, SDOT says. Traffic will be detoured around the closure and drivers are urged to avoid Montlake Bridge if possible.

And, starting next Monday, the N.E. 45th Street viaduct will be closed until Sept. 10 so SDOT can replace the west end of the aging structure. More information is available on SDOT’s website.

Coming next week: Eastlake Merchants Association after-work meetup

Just a reminder that the Eastlake Merchants Association will be having its first event a week from today: an after-work wine and conversation gathering.

The event will be from 5 to 7 p.m. on Wednesday, June 16, at Louisa’s Cafe Bakery at Eastlake and Louisa. Alcena Plum, owner of Louisa’s, will have some light snacks for attending merchants and a $5 glass of wine.

[Full disclosure: I'm a member of the merchants association and have been involved in planning for this event.]

This event will be fairly informal. It’s mainly a chance for Eastlake business owners, or people who work for an Eastlake business, to get together and get to know each other. 

The Merchants Association has been meeting for a few months, talking about the Eastlake business district and kicking around ideas. The group is considering how best to promote and possibly grow the business community in Eastlake. The event on June 16 will be a chance for those who’ve been attending the meetings to tell others what they’ve been talking about and hear their ideas.

Right now, the Eastlake Merchants Association is still rather informal itself. There isn’t a formal structure yet. The group is working on a mission statement and pondering what course it might take. Anyone who owns or works for an Eastlake business is welcome to attend.

The next meeting of the Eastlake Merchants Association is at 9 a.m. Tuesday, July 13, at Cicchetti, 121 E. Boston.

Installation of I-5 noise-reducing test panels begins Wednesday

WSDOT video of this morning’s press briefing.

The Washington State Department of Transportation announced this morning that installation of test noise-reduction panels on the I-5 Ship Canal Bridge will begin on Wednesday.

We first wrote about the test project a year ago. The WSDOT will install noise-absorbing panels on the underside of the upper deck of the Ship Canal Bridge to see if they reduce reflected traffic noise and how will they hold up. The test project will run for three years.

The Seattle Times reports on this morning’s WSDOT press briefing. Installation of the panels will take several months, the Times reports:

The 500-foot test section will consist of about 700 4-foot-by-8-foot panels. The state says the location is good because it includes noise on a double-deck structure and also noise moving over water.

The state hopes those who live near the test section will notice less noise.

If the test section proves successful, the WSDOT will seek funding from the State Legislature to hang the panels on the rest of the Ship Canal Bridge.

The Times says that single lanes on the I-5 express lanes will be closed during the day during installation. Parts of sidewalks under I-5 between E. Allison and E. Gwinn will also be closed.

Read more of the Times’ story here.

WSDOT has photos from this morning’s event on it’s Flickr page.

Our video from last summer’s community information meeting on the project is here: