Friday, March 30, 2012

PhinneyWood Business Update

Hello And Goodbye
Longtime Anchors Close While New Businesses Open
By Lisa Craze

We’re saying goodbye to old friends and greeting new ones in the neighborhood early this year.

Many of us are sad to see our good friends at the Greenwood Market go. The market closed its doors to make way for the expansion of the Fred Meyer Store. The Town and Country chain, which operated Greenwood Market, was confident it could find new jobs at its other stores for almost all 50 employees. Greenwood Market was well known for its generosity in the community. It sponsored the Winter Festival at the Phinney Neighborhood Association every year, and since 1999, contributed more than $15,000 to the PNA through their 1% Giveback Program. (Ballard Market is still participating in the program and Greenwood Market receipts are still being accepted for now.)

Fred Meyer on 85th St. is also temporarily closed to allow for the store’s long-awaited expansion. Doors are expected to re-open sometime late this fall.

Among the new businesses in the neighborhood is The Ridge Pizza at 72nd and Greenwood Ave N. Owned and operated by a group of friends, including the owners of Prost! and the Nickerson Street Saloon, The Ridge Pizza is a family-friendly place which also has a full bar. The Ridge’s 14 signature pizzas are all named after local businesses and organizations. Three of those are also designated as "Charity Case Pizzas." Whenever you order "The Zoo," "The Firefighter" or "The Community Center," a dollar goes to the organization for which it is named.

418 Public House at 418 NW 65th St is also new to the neighborhood. The menu is heavy on traditional as well as unique Mexican dishes, and vegans and vegetarians will appreciate the options that may not be on the menu. All you have to do is ask. Happy Hour is from 4-6:30 pm with food and drink specials. The 418 Public House website promises regular Monday night trivia as well as special Jazz and Funk nights.

Emerald City Orchids at 716 NW 65th St. recently added a café. They’re serving sandwiches and salads for lunch as well as an assortment of pastries and espresso beverages.

It’s also good to see that Gainsbourg, 8550 Greenwood Ave N, has re-opened after a fire last year. The funky French bistro atmosphere returns, as do the two happy hours a day and the diverse selection of drinks and small plates.

Many parents in the neighborhood have called on the services of Janet Klinger Photography to give a special sparkle to portraits of their families. Since many of her clients request her to work on location, Janet has closed her studio space, but is still very much in business and in demand. Her offices have moved to her home, and when a studio is required, she is renting space at remote locations such as the Phinney Neighborhood Association.

Friday, March 23, 2012

More about Hunger

This will be my last post for Hunger Action Week. Yesterday I attended the Food Lifeline Partner Conference along with Michael Gregory, our Hot Meal Program Coordinator. Along with United Way Hunger Action Form I participated in last week, I feel like I have really learned a lot. I wanted to share some of the information and links that I gathered.

Did you know that Washington is the 13th "hungriest" state in the country? Food insecurity is not an abstract concept for many of our neighbors. In the past year food banks and meal programs have recorded a 30% increase in the number of senior adults seeking food assistance. As the population ages and the economy shrinks, this is one of the most sobering effects.

Visit Food Lifeline for lots of great information, including tangible ways to help. Advocacy is a great means of getting involved and they have current info on state and federal budget measures under consideration. A few emails or phone calls to your elected officials can make a big difference. Take a look at the hunger map and check out The Big Waste, chronicling some basic problems with our food industry.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

“Meal Programs” versus “Soup Kitchens”

In recognition of Hunger Action Week, we would like to share an article put together by the Meals Partnership Coalition, a group of 70 Seattle-area organizations that work to serve more than 5,000,000 no-cost meals per year to community members who would otherwise go hungry.

There are many terms used to describe the organizations that serve prepared food to people in need. Two common terms are “soup kitchens and “meal programs.” But what do they mean? In 1802 the first American soup kitchen intended to feed the needy was opened by the Humane Society of New York City and was widely accepted as needed to support those who struggled with hunger. From the 1820’s to the 1920’s soup kitchens lost popularity in the United States with the rise of the view that social programs just perpetuated poverty and need. Then the Great Depression hit. During the 1930’s soup kitchens served millions of people to help stave off hunger in our country. A soup kitchen was traditionally just that, a kitchen that served soup and bread to those needing food support. After the Great Depression many social programs were established which once again were instrumental in the loss of popularity of soup kitchens until the 1980’s.

During the 1980’s many people in need were not receiving enough support from government benefits and once again no-cost meal programs were needed to meet the hunger needs of our community. When meal programs became a popular method of providing nutritional support during the 1980’s many groups and organizations recognized the importance of creating and serving more nutritionally sound meals. Since the resurgence of these important programs, changes in American eating habits have occurred and a movement to recognize the importance of nutritionally dense and balanced meals has become widely recognized. Gone are the bowls of soup and pieces of bread. Today those basic items have been replaced by a serving of lean protein, vegetable, fruit, and dairy; a complete balanced meal. Based upon the changes we have seen in how and what is served within free meal programs there is now
a movement to change the name of this important resource from “soup kitchen” to “meal program.”

You can support the PNA Hot Meal Program with cash contributions, donations of food or supplies, by volunteering, or with a special gift such as a commercial coffee grinder, which would help us make be the best use of donated coffee beans.
Click HERE to learn more about how to get involved!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Comfort and Joy Gift Drive 2012

Celebrate Spring by contributing a special-occasion surprise for a child in need at Broadview Emergency Shelter. All newly purchased, unwrapped items will be appreciated, but the items below are most in need. Return gifts to the Phinney Neighborhood Center by Friday, April 13.

Bouncer Seats, Bath Toys, Exercise Mats, Shampoo/Body Wash, Learning Toys, Similac Advanced Formula

TODDLERS: Ages 1-2
Disposable Diapers & Pull-ups (sizes 3-5), Learning Toys
Dora, Diego, or Elmo Toys, Convertible Car Seats, Umbrella Strollers


Dress-Up Clothes, Remote-Control Vehicles, Car or Truck Playsets, Action Figures (non-violent), Doll House People (multi-ethnic), Baby Dolls (multi-ethnic), Booster Car Seats, Card Games, Art Supplies (markers, sidewalk chalk), Sticker Sets and Coloring Books, Toy Cash Register with Play Money, Duplo or Lego Building Kits, Dictionaries

PRE-TEEN: Ages 10-12
Video Games (all systems), Lego or K’nex Building Kits, Journals, Outdoor Toys (jump ropes, kickballs, bubbles), Art Supplies (beading materials, drawing pencils and pads, fancy markers), Dictionaries, Calculators

TEEN: Ages 13-18
CD Boom Boxes, Dictionaries, Video Games for Wii, Journals, GED Study Guides, Gift Card to Movie Theaters, Target, Ross, Fred Meyer, Barnes & Noble, or Visa, Calculators, MP3 players, Rechargeable Batteries

We Need the Silver Haired Set

Seattleites cherish living in a city of neighborhoods.  Each pocket offers a unique life style and connection to our community.  Neighbors passionately organize to cultivate and maintain a keen sense of place.  By doing so our neighborhoods give meaning to the word home. 

An integral component of a neighborhood’s unique sense of place is its ability to inspire delight. Delight can come from the ease of accessibility to high quality dining, groceries, schools, parks, gardens, community centers or even vistas.  Delight can be derived from a chance meeting or conversation with neighbors at a local coffee shop or bookstore.  A connected and cared for community cultivates a neighborhood’s propensity to inspire delight.    

In an age where households are strapped with ever more financial burdens, for many, time is short at hand.  Every one of us who loves our neighborhood wishes we could give more to it, but often can’t prioritize that over other pressing concerns.  In this moment I look to our elder generations as hidden gems that can tie our community together.  It is our gradually silvering population of baby boomers and beyond that we must strive to keep invested in our communities.  These are the neighbors with a bit more time, experience and inherent patience to dedicate to our places.  These are the neighbors that know what it was like before the world got so connected and rushed. They have the steady hands to shape our open spaces and keep our community cared for and vibrant.  They are a resource we must never undervalue.   

Exploring avenues to grow the engagement of our silvery stateswomen and men should be high on every neighborhood’s agenda.  Developing programs that assist our elders with aging in place is critical to keeping them connected and supported.  Take a look at the PNA Village program, sign up to volunteer or become a member.  If you’re not close to the retirement age, stay connected to your neighbors who are.  If you were born before Kennedy was President, don’t forget your neighborhood, it needs your wisdom and any help you can give.   

David R. Wellington
MBA Candidate
Foster School of Business, Class of 2012

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Long-term lane closure coming to southbound SR 99/Aurora Avenue North

Drivers face increased congestion for the next six weeks on southbound State Route 99/Aurora Avenue North approaching downtown Seattle. Anticipated backups begin March 6 when crews building the SR 99 tunnel narrow southbound Aurora from three lanes to two between Republican and John streets, just north of the Battery Street Tunnel.

The lane closure is scheduled to last through at least mid-April and will give crews space to relocate utilities buried up to 15 feet beneath the westernmost lane of the roadway. Relocating the utilities will allow crews to begin building the SR 99 tunnel’s north portal, which will be located near Harrison Street between Sixth Avenue North and Aurora.

As a result of the lane closure, King County Metro Transit will begin detouring buses that use this section of southbound SR 99/Aurora Avenue North at 9 p.m. Monday, March 5. More information will be available soon at King County Metro’s Alert Center.

Drivers can find regularly updated traffic closure information for downtown Seattle on the construction traffic update.

Hunger Action Week

Are you interested in learning more about hunger in our community? United Way of King County has put together a great selection of educational and advocacy events to raise awareness of hunger issues in the greater Seattle area. Click the Hunger Action Week link above for more information. To get involved right here at the PNA, check out our Hot Meal Program or contact us about providing food for a local women's shelter.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Five Minutes Could Mean $1 Million

Exciting and unexpected news! The PNA still might have a chance at the $1 million grant from the Heritage Capital Project Fund that we didn’t get last year. We just got word that the Senate included the PNA’s renovation project in the Senate Capital Budget – 2012 Supplemental –along with 14 other projects. Here’s the link (see page 21 for projects) This was absolutely unexpected, given where the state budget is at.

Now we need to convince the Senate to keep it in the budget AND encourage the House to add it to their budget, which had nothing in it. Over the next few days, the Senate and the House will be “horse trading” and your action now will help to make sure we do not get traded out of the final budget.

Is it a long shot? YES

Do we need the $1 million? YES

With this funding we could complete our current project and explore other projects, like an elevator for the Brick Building.

Is it worth 5 minutes of your time to potentially get $1 million? YES

Please call your state representatives and senators by Friday March 2. Calling is better than emailing. Current indications are that the legislative session will end as scheduled next week – and we understand that much will be decided this weekend. So if you’re going to call, you really need to do it in the next couple of days – the sooner the better!

If you need the phone numbers for your representatives, here is link:
To Your Senators
• Thank you for funding the Phinney Neighborhood Association project through the Heritage Capital Projects Fund in the Senate Capital Budget.
• Thank you for your support of heritage preservation and the jobs it creates in our district. (remember, construction starts this summer!)
• Please “hold the line” at the $5.9M mark in their negotiations with the House in the next few days.

To Your Representatives
• Thank you for your support of the Phinney Neighborhood Association project and the Heritage Capital Projects Fund as you begin discussions with the Senate.
• Please support funding for the Fund at the level recommended in the Senate Capital Budget ($5.9M).
• Would you be willing to tell Hans Dunshee and Judy Warnick that your constituents are in support of the Heritage Capital Projects Fund?

Thank you for helping the PNA!