Come late spring, the yearning begins for the days when the sunlight lingers past 9 p.m., the air gets (a little) warmer and my family finally emerges from hibernation inside our cozy 1,400-square-foot home. These are the days when our back door is constantly open, our kids are running in and out, and we gain 1,000 square feet of living space from the patio, deck and backyard. They are the glorious days of summer in Seattle.
The Pacific Northwest is often misunderstood by outsiders—written off as a rainy hinterland populated by fleece-flaunting Earth Firsters, or parodied as a land of hipsters and dot-com millionaires jacked up on espresso. But when descriptions of the local landscape and inhabitants are in the hands of talented writers who live and work here, a truer picture emerges, as evidenced by three new fictional takes on our city and its outskirts.
1. It’s yet another opportunity to recycle! (Remember that tube of sunscreen you didn’t finish last summer?)
2. Late sunsets mean you can work on your backyard chicken coop until 10 p.m.
3. Lake Washington has a very low incidence of shark attacks.
4. You can now wear your Tevas without socks. (Wait! Hideous winter toes revealed. Put socks back on!)
5. Instead of telling visitors, “Really, there is a giant mountain behind those clouds,” you can actually point to Mount Rainier.
When it comes to endless summer nights, Seattle has the bragging rights sewn up: Around here, sunlight lingers into end of day (we’ll have 16 hours of daylight on June 21!), making for long, languid evenings that seem to stretch on forever. Sure, our nights are seldom hot—some years, we just settle for dry—but the city comes alive at night during this season, with myriad options for after-hours adventures. Whether you’re seeking ways to play, eat, drink or explore the outdoors in the dark, this is your guide to the best summer nights Seattle has to offer.
Hardly a day goes by that genetically modified foods don’t make the news in some form: legal battles over labeling requirements, rumbles in the blogosphere about potential new products, theories about the harm these products might do to people or other species, or a new scientific perspective that becomes ammo in the battle over these foods’ very right to exist. Is genetic technology applied to our food supply a boon to modern food systems, a balm for world hunger? Or is it a danger to human health, Mother Nature—and our state’s economy?
When I was an editor at Washington magazine back in the ’80s, I kept a Mason jar of moonshine on my desk, something to share with special visitors. A friend had picked it up somewhere up near Darrington, our state’s little bit o’ Appalachia. That area was settled by many folks from the Carolinas and Kentucky who came to mine and cut timber in the hills, much as they had done back home. Thus, the famous Darrington Bluegrass Festival (in July), and the heritage that goes with it.
Cars may have lost some street cred among bikers, environmentalists and anyone tired of pouring her paycheck into the gas tank, but a new museum in Tacoma is here to remind us of the glory days, when we could rev up and roll down the road free of guilt. LeMay: America’s Car Museum opens this month next door to the Tacoma Dome, in a shining chrome and glass structure that looks vaguely automotive. (Is it a rearview mirror? A grille?)
Check out this video Seattle Channel's Art Zone, in which host Nancy Guppy interviewed Northwest filmmakers featured at SIFF this year on the red carpet during the opening-night gala. Why does Guppy arrive in a dog crate strapped to the top of a car? Because that's how Guppy does it. (Mitt Romney, we're looking at you.)
As the world turns its attention toward the Olympic Games in London next month, Seattleites will be cheering on locally based athletes. But at press time, a few of these determined fighters had a few more hurdles to clear—here’s hoping they make it all the way to the big time.
Organized by the Pacific Science Center and timed to coincide with the Seattle Center’s Next 50 celebration, the first-annual Seattle Science Festival features a galaxy of family-friendly festivities.
Science Expo Day (6/2) kicks things off with a big bang. Taking place across the Seattle Center grounds, this free event features more than 150 happenings: exhibits, demos, hands-on experiments, games and live performances by science-loving musicians and performance troupes.
The news that principal dancer Lucien Postlewaite was leaving Pacific Northwest Ballet at the end of this season had many fans asking, “Wherefore art thou, Romeo?” The dancer, who joined PNB as a teenager and performed with the company for nine years, quickly became known for his absolutely riveting portrayal of a certain Mr. Montague in Jean-Christophe Maillot’s modern ballet version of the Shakespearean love story.