The first Thursday Art Walk is a wonderful way to revel in art, drink wine from plastic cups, mingle with Seattle’s formidable artist community and, of course, snap some photos.
A short and spastic video made from a few hundred photos snapped in a single afternoon
Summer in Seattle means time spent on or in the water. The Pacific Northwest is overflowing with rivers, lakes, ponds, creeks, hot springs, bays and inlets. All these aquatic options lends itself to many adventures, be it kayaking, swimming, fishing, or in today’s case, sailing.
On pier 54 ‘Let’s Go Sailing!’ offers low-key jaunts around Eliot Bay in a racing sail boat. The trips are a few hours long and for $25 a person I think they are very affordable.
Bridget and I chose the sunset sail, shoving off with 12 other passengers and 2 crew men at 7:30 to catch one Seattle’s amazing sunsets from the peaceful waters of the Puget Sound.
I have seen this city, ‘the Emerald City’, from countless perspectives and angles but it is from the sailboat, 4 feet above the water, under a full sail, that I think is my favorite.
The focus is on the Olympics and the orange orb as we merry makers sip our wine and champagne and snap photos.
MY FAVORITE PLACES TO GET ON OR IN THE WATER IN SEATTLE
At the Eastern foot of Madison st. is a grassy swath, packed on sunny summer days. The beach is small and the water of lake Washington is chilly to some, but the opportunity to swim out to the floating dock and leap from the high dive make this my favorite swimming hole in Seattle.
Sand underfoot and a spectacular view of Seattle are two good reasons to head to West Seattle (via bus or water taxi) for an afternoon on Alki. There are several fire pits, volley balls nets and enough beachfront eateries, coffee shops and bars to keep you satiated. Rent a bike and cruise the easy bike path around the point.
A huge garden, nature conservatory and public space, the Arboretum is perhaps Seattle’s best park. And with plenty of paths that wind along canals and dip into the lake it is also an excellent place to get near water and the many species it collects.
I like to rent a canoe from the University of Washington waterfront activities center ($7/hour) and paddle under the 520 bridge to access the peaceful channels that snake through the park. From your humble craft you can see bald eagle, blue heron, lake turtles and all manner of water fowl.
I have rode the ferry form Seattle to Bremerton perhaps thousands of times, even so, it is still one of my favorite ways to get on the water and enjoy fresh air and beautiful views. A $7 dollar ferry ticket brings you through narrow passages and past sea lions, evergreen forests and depending on the season, orca whales. And they serve beer on the ferry.
MYRTLE EDWARDS PARK
Walking North along the waterfront the Olympic Sculpture Park presents itself as an eventuality. Enter the footpath and continue as the Seattle Art Museum sponsored green space gives way to Myrtle Edwards park. Small beach coves, rose gardens, bike paths and the sound of a serene surf punctuate this waterfront strip of zen.
Photo by Tanya Puntti
I love swimming.
The feeling of first slipping into the water. Your body crawls and sparkles with the chilly Washington waters. Then you are underneath the surface and every feeling of discomfort washes behind you in a contrail of fine bubbles.
I love being underwater. The weightlessness. The soundless hum of pulsing blood and tidal pull. The feeling of flight. I like to hold my breath and glide.
At Madison Park, at the ass end of Madison Avenue, dropping into lake Washington, there is a pleasant little park, usually packed on sunny days. One hundred feet from shore is a floating dock of concrete upon which rests a diving board and a high dive.
Bridget and I catch the 11 from Pine st as the sun is veering toward the horizon.
I have to get in the water.
For five bucks you can have a jolly old time in Seattle.
photo by bensonkua
$5 will get you two coffees in most cafes in Seattle, enough for you and a friend to chill out at an outdoor patio table or cozy up inside a bookstore.
Some of my favorite chilled out cafes in Seattle are; Zietgiest coffee (Pioneer Square), Cafe Umbria (Pioneer Square), Bauhaus (Capitol Hill), Freshy’s (West Seattle), Stumptown (Capitol Hill), Cafe Vita (Capitol Hill) and Travelers (Capitol Hill)
PARK PEOPLE WATCHING
Tis the season to spread a blanket on the grass and settle in a few hours of magazine browsing and people watching in some of Seattle’s many parks. While parks are free, your $5 would be well spent on a few pieces of fruit and a bottle of water.
Some of my favorite parks to chill and people watch are; Alki beach (West Seattle), Cal Anderson Park (Capitol Hill), Volunteer Park (Capitol Hill), Madison Park (Leschi/Madison) and Myrtle Edwards (Eliot Bay waterfront).
At Cal Anderson park your five bucks would be well spent on a scoop of Molly Moons ice cream to be gobble across the street on the grass.
BEER SIPPING + TABLE GAMES = AWESOME
Yes, it is quiet difficult to walk into a bar and only spend $5, but a fiver will grab you a pint in almost any bar in Seattle.
Some of my favorites are; Pioneer Square Saloon (Pioneer Square), Elysian Fields (Stadium district), Bimbo’s (Capitol Hill), Linda’s (Capitol Hill)…
But the real penny pinching pleasures lie in cheap or free table games and vintage arcade machines.
I go to Lava Lounge and Canterbury for shuffle board.
Shorty’s for Pinball.
Pioneer Square Saloon for Foosball.
Owl and Thistle for darts.
For a few bucks more you can enjoy pool tables at Temple Billiards and bowling/pool at Garage. For your Arcade fix head to Gameworks, Jillians or the Miner’s Landing arcade.
OTHER SWEET THINGS $5 CAN NAB YOU
2 bus tickets
1 cheap cover charge
1 water taxi ride to Alki
3 taco truck carnitas
1 used paper back
1 avocado and 1 baguette
1 shoe shine
1 Pike Place Market Bouquet
30 minutes of fun at the Miners Landing Arcade
1/2 mile pedicab ride
I also one met a guy who will do 3 back flips for 3 bucks, not a bad deal
Long after hard drives have crashed and cd’s are rendered useless, rock art will continue to carry our messages into the future.
Looking at the layers paint I can easily imagine a future civilization trying to piece together clues about our era from bits of faded graffiti. ‘Who was this artists?’ they might ask, ‘What was he trying to communicate?’
We put so much faith in digital information. We seem to intrinsically trust its infallibility. But files may be corrupted and systems may crash, leaving the written word and the aerosol art to tell our story.
Take these native petroglyphs…
Pre-Columbian cultures carved these figures in Capitol Reef National Park, Utah over 1,000 years ago. Images of deer, celestial objects, hunters and sheep hold testament to the life of North American native cultures.
Had they left iPods instead of rock art we would know little or nothing of their existence. If the Rosetta stone was a online database and not a slab of granodiorite, we would likely still be baffled by Egyptian hieroglyphs…
What are you carving into stone?