First ever Lusio light art festival ready to switch on Saturday in Volunteer Park

On what is expected to be the darkest night of the year, artists plan to bring light to Capitol Hill’s Volunteer Park.

Lusio, a celebration of light art organized by artist Mollie Bryan, will take place Saturday, July 30 in the park from 8 to 10 PM. The festival will feature more than 20 light and sound installation pieces, including collaborative and interactive pieces.


As the sun sets on July 30, Volunteer Park will slowly come to life and “awaken” with light and sound. Local artists will install and project multiple light installations all over the park for you to explore. The live ambient showcase from the Vancouver BC label, Silent Season, will orchestrate the entire event with beautiful, deep, natural sounds to delight the auditory senses. Visuals will be projected onto the amphitheater wall . Local artists brought in from all over to delight you with their craft.

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Wise Orchid Tai Chi opens on E Union with an alternative to yoga — UPDATE: New home for Apex Aerial Arts

Wise Orchid led a Seattle celebration of World Tai Chi Qigong Day 2016 in May

Wise Orchid led a Seattle celebration of World Tai Chi Qigong Day 2016 in May


The army of local yoga studios are getting some competition. Paralegal-turned-Tai Chi teacher Viola Brumbaugh has opened her own Tai Chi studio in the Central District, in the space recently vacated by children’s toy and clothing store Magpie.

Wise Orchid Tai Chi opened for business at 2002 E Union with a series of free classes on the Fourth of July and has been up and running since then. While Central Seattle has no shortage of yoga studios, Wise Orchid is one of just a few Tai Chi centers in the area. Continue reading

Seattle’s neighborhood fight ‘not about silencing voices’ — And a response from a ‘neighborhood villain’

The future of Seattle's neighborhood council's probably looks more like the People’s Academy for Community Engagement -- now accepting applications

The future of Seattle’s neighborhood council’s probably looks more like the People’s Academy for Community Engagement — now accepting applications(Image: City of Seattle)

Kathy Nyland, director of the City of Seattle’s Department of Neighborhoods, has responded to the backlash from groups around Seattle that contend City Hall’s push to disconnect itself from the entrenched District Council system is an attempt to silence “neighborhood” voices. Here is the main thrust — the whole thing is posted here in the CHS Community section:

Seattle is a unique city, and we are fortunate to have so many valuable partners currently at the proverbial table. Those partners play an important role and that role will continue. While we are appreciative of the countless hours our volunteers spend making our city better, we recognize and acknowledge there are barriers to participation. There are communities who cannot be at the table, while there are some communities who don’t even know there is a table. This is where theDepartment of Neighborhoods comes in.

This is not a power grab. It is a power share. At the heart of this Executive Order is a commitment to advance the effective deployment of equitable and inclusive community engagement strategies across all city departments. This is about making information and opportunities for participation more accessible to communities throughout the city. Continue reading

Developer hopes better connection to E Madison enough to move Piecora’s building forward

A new look at 14th and Madison

A new look at 14th and Madison

Screen Shot 2016-07-26 at 6.42.02 AM Screen Shot 2016-07-26 at 6.42.18 AMThe developer and architects of the six-story, mixed-use apartment project set to rise where the old Piecora’s building was demolished return to the East Design Review Board Wednesday night with hopes of convincing the body that their new plan truly is worthy of connecting E Madison to the overhauled McGilvra Park and world-renowned Bullitt Center, above.

Design Review: 1401 E Madison

In April, apartment giant Equity Residential and Ankrom Moisan architects were rejected by the board for a design that members said needed “more retail and transparency to engage and interact with the streetscape” on E Madison and needed to do a better job connecting to the neighborhood around the six-story, 137-unit project with parking for 78 vehicles and a planned 3,800 square feet of retail space. Continue reading

New law would ban conversion therapy for minors in Seattle

A message at 2016 Trans* Pride (Image: CHS)

A message at 2016 Trans* Pride (Image: CHS)

City Council member Lorena Gonzalez is proposing an addition to the Seattle Municipal Code to ban the use of conversion therapy on minors.

“Seattle must send a clear message that we stand with children who are currently subjected to or may be at risk of being subjected to conversion therapy,” said Gonzalez. “Research has repeatedly demonstrated that this practice is ineffective and results in negative health outcomes.”

Conversion therapy proponents believe it can make LGBTQ individuals become heterosexual. The practice is opposed by the American Psychological Association, American Medical Association, and the Human Rights Campaign, among others. Continue reading

Seattle — especially its businesses — falling short of recycling goals

Horse-drawn garbage wagon, 1915

Seattle Public Utilities is preparing a rate hike for the around 1 million tons of garbage, compost, and recycling the city’s citizens and businesses create ever year. But the bigger deal might be that even in green Seattle, we are falling behind recycling goals.

In 2015, the city recycled 58% of its MSW — municipal solid waste — that’s two percentage points short of goals set in 2013, according to a recent presentation to the Seattle City Council.

Tuesday, a council committee will discuss SPU’s proposed rate hikes of 7.2% in 2017, 1.9% in 2018, and 4% in 2019. The city says the monthly solid waste bill for a typical residential customer is currently around $44.85. SPU says the increases are necessary to help offset the costs of its Utility Discount Program for low income residents and to upgrade the recycling center at its South Transfer Station and complete the new North Transfer Station, set to be open by the end of 2017. Continue reading

What kind of house $15 million will get you on Capitol Hill

In a neighborhood where the average property is now worth $1 million, one of Capitol Hill’s newest listings is setting a highwater mark for real estate prices across the city.

This weekend’s $15 million listing of the Samuel Hill mansion at 814 E Highland is now the most expensive “single family home” for sale in Seattle:

ESCAPE THE ORDINARY ~ Noted Sam Hill Mansion commissioned in 1910. A peerless and creative collaboration of passion & brilliance. Located on one of Seattle’s most beautiful tree-lined streets in the stately Harvard-Belmont Historic Landmark District. Reminiscent of a true Manhattan Brownstone. Dramatic in form & contemporary in style, this sophisticated & chic residence frames unobstructed views of Lake Union, Olympic Mts & Puget Sound. Stunning rooftop terrace with two fireplaces & spa. Iconic!

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2016 Block Party attendees talk about race, LGBTQ, and gentrification on Capitol Hill

The 20th edition of the modern format of the Capitol Hill Block Party again filled Pike/Pine with Block Partiers this weekend (Images: Alex Garland for CHS)

The 20th edition of the modern format of the Capitol Hill Block Party again filled Pike/Pine with Block Partiers this weekend (Images: Alex Garland for CHS)

Potty-mouth named STRFKR delivered the crowd to planet dance (Images: Alex Garland for CHS)

Potty-mouth named STRFKR delivered the crowd to planet dance (Images: Alex Garland for CHS)

Another Capitol Hill Block Party has come and gone, the smashed beer bottles have been swept away, and the crowds that clamored to see ODESZA and CHVRCHES have dissipated. For some, CHBP was just another weekend of Capitol Hill bar hopping; for others, it was a sad reminder of the way neighborhoods and cities are changing here and across the country.

“This was a neighborhood for freaks, and that was dope,” said Alana Belle, a black woman who grew up in the area and now works on Capitol Hill. Over the years, the people she has seen on neighborhood have changed, and not for the better. “I would argue that it’s not as safe for the LGBTQ community as it used to be.”

Belle is a CHBP veteran, and said that she comes to the festival to support her friends, particularly other artists of color. Belle and her friend Ola Rae came out to support Porter Ray on the second day of the festival. “It was so dope to see black people on stage,” said Belle. Continue reading

How Capitol Hill’s Walkinshaw is faring in race for 7th District seat in D.C.

With one week to get your ballots in for the primary election, Capitol Hill’s Brady Walkinshaw is looking forward to seeing the results on August 2nd as the Democrat hopes to go through to November in the race for Congressional District 7.

“It’s a close race, but we feel good about where we’re heading,” the current 43rd District state representative told CHS.

Walkinshaw, who was appointed to the state House in 2013, may have been the first candidate to announce he was running for the District 7 seat, but he wasn’t the last.

Eight other candidates are vying for the seat left wide open after Democratic Congressman Jim McDermott announced he would not be seeking re-election after 28 years in office. In the race for McDermott’s seat, Walkinshaw broke rank and tossed his hat in the ring prior to the announcement, a risky move that gave him an early jump on the competition.

Voters will send the top two candidates on the primary ballot to the November election.

Measured by endorsements and funds raised, the battle comes down to two candidates — Walkinshaw and state Sen. Pramila Jayapal. Continue reading

Seattle Arts and Lectures moves to 15th Ave E, plans to stay forever (and ever)

Literary-focused nonprofit Seattle Arts and Lectures has made Capitol Hill its home base. The organization migrated from its previous office in Georgetown to a new spot on 15th Ave E where architecture firm Board and Vellum was housed until its move earlier this summer.

“We’re so grateful to be here and be part of such a vibrant art community and such a vibrant neighborhood.” director Ruth Dickey said. Dickey said that though the move came because SAL’s landlord in Georgetown wanted the space, the organization is ecstatic about its new neighborhood. “We hope to stay forever.” Continue reading

Man found stabbed outside Harvard Market QFC

A man was found stabbed and bleeding outside Capitol Hill’s Harvard Market QFC early Sunday morning.

Seattle Fire and police were called to the scene just before 4 AM to a report of a male with multiple stab wounds to his arms outside the Harvard entrance to QFC near the upper parking lot, according to radio dispatches. Arriving medics found the man in his 20s with several puncture wounds and a deep laceration to his arms. He was rushed to Harborview for further treatment.

Police were investigating the incident and working to determine where the stabbing occurred. According to SPD dispatches, police were looking in the area of the parking lot near the Knights of Columbus building on Union a few blocks from where the victim was found. There was no suspect information broadcast and no immediate arrests.

Police were busy on Harvard for the second night this weekend. Early Saturday morning, police investigated gunfire in the parking lot above the QFC.