So, the Maple Leafer has been pretty quiet lately. Work. Writing. Life. They take up time!

I wanted to break this hiatus by reminding you Maple Leafers that tonight is Night Out, a national event designed to heighten crime prevention awareness, increase neighborhood support in anti-crime efforts, and unite our communities. The Seattle Night Out is coordinated by Seattle Police Department Crime Prevention.

I’ve attended these neighborhood Night Out events for years. It is a great way to meet your neighbors — learn their names, meet their kids and dogs, and bond.

The Seattle Night Out calendar doesn’t have a list of Maple Leaf-area Night Out events — but registering on this map is optional.

I know there is one on 89th between 20th Ave NE and 17th Ave NE. I saw a sign up this year that they’ll be closing this block. Stop by if you are in the area!

There are generally a few streets closed near Roosevelt as well. Commenters have shared additional Night Out events:

  • One on 98th between Roosevelt and 98th
  • One on 98th between 12th and 15th

Any of you know of other Night Out events being planned in Maple Leaf?


What are you doing next Wednesday?

Did you answer — heading to the Northgate Community Center for the final design meeting for Maple Leaf Play Area Renovation?

I hope you did! Because it will be the last chance to provide any last-minute feedback on the park designs.

The meeting will take place from 6 – 8 p.m. at Northgate Community Center. For the first 30 minutes, Seattle Parks will present an update on the greater Maple Leaf Reservoir Park project. The remaining time will focus on presenting design concepts for the play area and gathering further input.

Seattle Parks gathered great input from the community on the design of the Maple Leaf play area at the June 1 community meeting, at Kid’s Club on May 18, and through the online questionnaire. Seattle Parks has now developed — in partnership with The Berger Partnership — design concepts that are guided by this input. These concepts be presented on July 15.

Hope to see everyone there!


We just got an urgent letter from North Helpline.

A major source of their food supply, the letter carrier’s Stamp Out Hunger food drive, collected 23% less food than last year. And yet, the demand at North Helpline’s food bank is up 30% over last year.

The organization is currently very low on sources of protein and could use donations of canned tuna, chicken, corned beef, chili & peanut butter or frozen packages of meat.

Amy Besunder, executive director of North Helpline, notes that for the first time since she came to North Helpline two years ago, they had to open the food bank with any offerings of protein for their clients.

Go here to learn how you can donate much-needed food items.


Sen. Scott White, who represents the 46th District, which serves Maple Leaf, sent out a press release yesterday about his an Sen. Ed Murray’s work to rescue funding for arts and cultural programs.

Their bill, Senate Bill 5834, passed the Senate floor yesterday in a bipartisan vote of 33 to 8. It now goes to the House.

SB 5834 will redirect King County’s hotel/motel tax from debt service on the Kingdome stadium. An amendment sponsored by Sen. White would also direct at least 37.5 percent of the hotel/motel tax revenue to fund construction of workforce housing beginning in 2021. White’s amendment would also allow any remaining funds from the tax to be used for tourism related purposes that attract visitors to the county.

“Our vibrant arts community helps make Seattle and King County one of the most desirable places to live in the country,” White said.  “The passage of this legislation will ensure that we preserve these community assets for future generations and continue to enjoy the economic impacts the arts generate in our local economy.”


In response to challenging budgets, Seattle Parks and Recreation has been asked by City Council to re-think how community centers are operated. Over the past five months, a citizen advisory team has come up with ideas for changing how community centers are run.

Now, the broader community has the opportunity to weigh in on several proposed options. Seattle Parks will hold two community meetings. The closest to Maple Leaf will be held on Wednesday, June 15 at the Bitter Lake Community Center (13035 Linden Ave N) from 7 – 8:30 p.m.

Another meeting will be held on June 16 at the Jefferson Community Center (3801 Beacon Ave S), also from 7 – 8:30 p.m.

The draft options will be available June 8 at all community centers and on the Seattle Parks and Recreation web page. Those who are unable to attend the meeting in person are invited to complete an online survey that will be posted on the web (same site as above) beginning June 8.


Click on the photo to zoom in on the flier

Things are moving full-speed ahead in the Maple Leaf Reservoir Park redesign.

On June 1, join Seattle Parks and Recreation for a design meeting for the Maple Leaf Play Area project. The meeting will be held at Olympic View Elementary (504 NE 95th St) from 6 – 8 p.m.

At the design meeting, neighbors can help inform and provide feedback on the design for the new play area.

A second meeting will be held on Wednesday, July 13 at the Northgate Community Center. There, you’ll be able to see the proposed design for the play area, and get an update on the greater reservoir project. That meeting will also be held from 6 – 8 p.m.

Visit the Maple Leaf Reservoir Park design website for more information.


Maple Leaf’s newest restaurant, COA, has two great events this weekend to introduce you to their tasty treats.

Photo courtesy of COA Website

Tomorrow (May 14),  COA will open its doors for a “Tacos for Life” street fair. Some of the delicious DE LA CALLE (street style food) you can expect include:

  • Street Style Tacos (Carne Asada, Carnitas)
  • Gorditas
  • Nachitos
  • Ceviche Tostadas

At the street fair, which will take place from noon to 7 p.m., you can also enter to win one of four $25 gift certificates.

On Sunday, May 15, come enjoy Family Night at COA.

From 4 to 8 p.m., COA is hosting a pre-opening event to show off some of its new menu items. Kids under 10 will eat for free (off a children’s menu).

Some of the new menu items you can enjoy include:

  • Chile relleno
  • Fajitas
  • Camarones diablo
  • Arroz y pollo
  • Gorditas

Come welcome this new tequilaria and Mexican eatery into our neighborhood – and enjoy some delicious food!


Courtesy of Olympic View PTA website

I know it doesn’t exactly feel like spring on any given day, but it’s time to kick into spring gardening mode. And this weekend is the perfect weekend to do that! There are two terrific plant sales to attend over the weekend.

The first is the Olympic View Elementary School’s Spring Plant Sale!

It starts to from 9 am to 7 pm and runs through Sunday, May 1. On Saturday, the hours will be from 9 am to 6pm and on Sunday you can buy plants from 10 am to 2 pm.

The plant sale will take place at Olympic View, and all proceeds from the event will directly benefit the students of Olympic View Elementary. Check out the Olympic View Elementary School PTA Web site.

But that’s not all. The Arboretum Foundation is also hosting their FlorAbundance spring plant sale on Saturday and Sunday.

The sale — which takes place at Building 30 in the Warren G. Magnuson Parkgoes from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Sunday.

See a list of nurseries and vendors at this year’s sale.


Did you know that 77 percent of renters prefer smoke-free housing — including over half of people who smoke?

Did you also know that — despite this — only 35 percent of renters report that they live in buildings with no-smoking policies?

In response, nine King County housing providers are developing no-smoking policies for their properties — a move that will benefit residents in 9,000 units across the county. These policies will prohibit smoking inside buildings, and in outdoor areas like patios and balconies. The policies, however, do not require that residents quit smoking or prohibit people who smoke from moving in.

“This is a major achievement and public health success that will ensure more families have access to safe and healthy living environments,” said Dow Constantine, King County Executive.

Around Maple Leaf, all 86 units at Lake City Village will go smoke-free by October 2011, when the units become available to the public. In addition to being smoke-free, Lake City Village will also offer the greenest affordable housing in Washington state.

Seattle Housing Authority apartment buildings in Green Lake and Lake City will also implement no-smoking policies by March of 2012.

“We are currently drafting new no-smoking policies that will cover more than 3,500 of our units,” said Andrew Lofton, Deputy Executive Director of the Seattle Housing Authority. “In addition to being the right decision for the health of our residents, we expect these new policies to help preserve our property values, save money on cleaning and repair costs, and reduce our risk of cigarette fires.”

The new smoke-free policies were adopted with support from Public Health – Seattle & King County and Communities Putting Prevention to Work (CPPW), an initiative funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that aims to reduce chronic disease by increasing access to healthy places.

Housing providers underwent a comprehensive planning process in advance of policy implementation, including surveys of residents, meetings with building management and staff, and resident meetings to explain the new policies.

Communities Putting Prevention to Work (CPPW)
In spring 2010, Public Health – Seattle & King County was awarded two CPPW grants from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), one for tobacco prevention and the other for obesity prevention. Public Health awarded over 50 local community partners (school districts, community-based organizations and local governments) with funding to improve nutrition and physical activity, and decrease tobacco use and exposure.


Check out Maple Leaf Life’s story about COA’s soft-launch opening on May 5 (Cinco de Mayo – how clever!).

Reservations are required for this three-course meal — which will include a tequila specifically chosen for each course, so head over to the link to learn how to reserve a seat.

In other news from Maple Leaf Life, Flying Squirrel Pizza won’t come to Maple Leaf until July. Can you wait that long??