CHS Crow | Lily, Kevin, and D-Nice — ‘Good things come and go’

The last call at the Lobby Bar‘s 916 E Pike incarnation will happen this weekend. Swooping in for the final Thursday at the original space of this “bastion of LGBTQ nightlife” in Pike/Pine, the CHS Crow shared bittersweet moments with a Seattle drag star with words of caution and of hope, a Movember’d IT pro with fond Lobby memories and a student and sound engineer with words about making the most. Cheers friends ~


Who are you?2014.11 CHS Crow portrait, Lily -- by Jacob Olsn
My name is Lily Armani. I’m a female impersonator. I’m also a stand-up comic. And I’ve been here with The Lobby for five years now. We started with RuPaul’s Drag Race: Season 2, and I’ve been co-hosting with Glamazonia, my life partner, ever since then.

We’ve been together almost nine years, and we’ve hosted every single season of RuPaul’s Drag Race, RuPaul’s Drag U. All the things nobody watched, we were hosting.

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CHS Pics | This week in Capitol Hill pictures

The CHS Flickr Pool contains more than 18,000 19,000 20,000 21,000  22,000 23,000 24,000 photographs -— most of Capitol Hill images, many glorious, some technically amazing. The pool is a mix of contributions from Capitol Hill — and nearby — shutterbugs. Interested in being part of it? If we like your photo and it helps us tell the story, we may feature it on CHS so please include your name and/or a link to your website so we can properly credit you. Interested in working as a paid CHS contributor for scheduled assignments? Drop us a line –- our roster is full for general assignments but pitch us on an idea.

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Also not opening on Capitol Hill: St. Noah — ‘a sk8 bar’

(Images: CHS)

(Images: CHS)

The former E Olive Way home of the Bus Stop will not become “sk8″ bar St. Noah.

We think.

But who can say anymore.

CHS has been fielding questions about what is happening in the space in recent weeks after the convincing-enough tagging went up on the former bar’s window. A check of permits and license applications doesn’t show anything in motion at the site, if you’re still wondering.

The Bus Stop shuttered in spring 2013 and the space has sat empty since.IMG_6218

Shop the Hill 2014: Deals and holiday shopping ideas from 50+ Capitol Hill businesses

LSXhJx_10418904_969449039736317_881034204080337542_nCHS has been supporting Shop the Hill for years now. It started as a mostly last-minute response by a few Capitol Hill shops to the wave of “small and local” holiday shopping promotions from champions of “small business” like American Express and Bank of America. Even University Village is in the game this year. Shop the Hill finally got its act together a little more seriously when the Capitol Hill Chamber of Commerce got involved two years ago. It is still 100% free for Capitol Hill businesses to be part of. And businesses are still welcome to cut up and modify the posters we print ever year to customize the message and dates of the promotion. I still see the posters from 2012 in use around the neighborhood here and there.

Promotions and messages from local merchants are already being added to along with some business profiles provided this year by the chamber. The grassroots “small and local” shopping guide will continue throughout the holidays but the big focus for Shop the Hill is the weekend after Thanksgiving starting  November 28th:

Shoppers will receive deep discounts and great giveaways at local retailers on Friday, November 28th through Sunday, November 30th. Find what makes Capitol Hill great – unique, unusual and hip offerings. With more than 60 independent businesses expected to participate, the neighborhood is bound to be a mecca for holiday shoppers. Whether hunting for a one-of-a-kind gift for a loved one—or a cherished item for oneself—everyone is bound to find some treat to get them in the spirit.

The roster for this year’s planned promotions for the weekend are below. You’ll find the flyers at stores throughout the area next week. If you’re staying in town for the holiday, consider heading out for a deal or two and a chance to check out some favorites old and new.  Continue reading

SPD uncovers large stash of guns, drugs in Capitol Hill storage facility

Police uncovered a major stockpile of drugs and guns after the drama-filled apprehension of a wanted felon outside a Capitol Hill storage facility last week.

According to SPD, detectives seized two assault rifles, ammunition, stolen credit cards and checkbooks, a dozen stolen laptops, 30 stolen smartphones, passports, expensive handbags, $5,600 cash, power tools, a bicycle, more than 20 fake ID cards, and a motorcycle from inside the man’s 13th Ave storage units. 

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PUNK’D: Starbucks **NOT** creating The Daphne — coffee, coffee and booze, and music — on Capitol Hill in former home of Chop Suey

(Image: CHS)

(Image: CHS)

Santa Monica's Hear Music (Image:

Santa Monica’s Hear Music (Image:

UPDATE 10:53 AM: A company spokesperson said the announcement sent to CHS is “absolutely not true.” CHS apologizes for the mistake in reporting.

UPDATE 3:45 PM: CHS has donated $175 (a nickel per pageview on this rather popular story) to Northwest Harvest to make good (or better) on getting duped. You can donate here.

UPDATE 10:15 AM: We’re working to confirm details. The Starbucks announcement was sent to us by a third party PR agency so have not yet confirmed with company officials.

UPDATE x2 10:24 AM: There are no construction records on file for the address and Starbucks company officials have not yet returned our messages. There are also no records of sale for the property.

UPDATE x3 10:30 AM: The building’s owner says the announcement is “news” to him.

Original report: Global coffee giant Starbucks announced Friday morning it is again ready to launch one of its massive experiments on Capitol Hill. The Chop Suey? It’s no longer for sale.

The Daphne is planned as “the evolution of their entertainment customer experience” and “a one-of-a-kind interactive Starbucks showcase venue” to open on the Hill in 2015. Continue reading

I-502 permit holder hopes to open Capitol Hill’s first pot shop in February

If all goes according to plan, Capitol Hill will have its first retail marijuana shop this February. But that’s a big “if” for shop owner hopeful Samuel Burke.

After failing to get the city’s approval in three Belltown locations, Burke is cautiously awaiting the city’s response to his proposed location at 15th Ave E and E Republican, currently home the the Capitol Hill Animal Clinic. According to state law, a retail marijuana shop must keep a 1,000-foot buffer from schools, parks, or community centers.

“Each time the city objected and we couldn’t over come it,” Burke told CHS of his previous three proposals. “It’s just such a privilege to think I could locate on Capitol Hill.”

Right now, things are looking good for Burke. Continue reading

There’s a better use for this: The marquee lights up at 12th Ave Arts

(Images: Alex Garland for CHS)

(Images: Alex Garland for CHS)

IMG_0916UPDATE: With speeches from a stage full of the movers and shakers who made the project happen, artists, and city and state officials, 12th Ave Arts opened its doors Thursday night.

Calling the project a new “center of community life” for Capitol Hill, Capitol Hill Housing CEO Chris Persons thanked the more than 200 capital donors who made the project possible and made way for a long roster of speakers there to introduce the project to the neighborhood. Rep. Frank Chopp got the audience on its feet to applaud “the Seattle spirit” and christened the largest of the two theater spaces in the facility with its first performance — his reading of the James Oppenheim poem Bread and Roses. The dignitaries even threw a few lines to the theater folk. Strawberry Workshop’s Greg Carter said he was ready to get to work in a building emblematic of Capitol Hill — a neighborhood with an environment open to creating “things that don’t make sense.” Continue reading

Capitol Hill food+drink | Rachel’s Ginger Beer comes home to 12th Ave Arts

This is what happens when you let Capitol Hill people into Pike Place Market (Image: RGB)

This is what happens when you let Capitol Hill people into Pike Place Market (Image: RGB)

Marshall, double fisting (Image: RGB)

Marshall, double fisting (Image: RGB)

Going to dinner and the theater at Capitol Hill’s 12th Ave Arts might not be the fancy-pants event some might expect. Capitol Hill farmers market born and bred Rachel’s Ginger Beer is finally opening a shop in its home neighborhood with a ginger beer and fry bar inside the new affordable housing + East Precinct parking + theater space + nonprofit office space + three food and drink space development.

“That was so a part of the drinking culture,” the Rachel in RGB told CHS while apologizing for being “boring” with a story about traipsing through Europe. “You get a beer and a bowl of fries.”

Hey, anytime there is traipsing involved, we’re interested. Especially when you’re talking les pommes frites.

Oh là là. Rachel Marshall’s latest Capitol Hill joint is slated to open this spring with all the goodness of Rachel’s Ginger Beer plus “a menu of crispy, hand-cut fries and 15 to 20 dipping sauces, including a fancy ranch.” The bar will serve ginger beer-based and carbonated cocktails. The bubbles will tickle. There will be ice cream for floats and, if you’re an animal, dipping fries. And you’ll be able to fill your growler or grab RGB to go.

“What I picture is kind of a place where you can go during the day and really feel comfortable opening your laptop but can also have a drink,” Marshall said. “And we can go into the night.” Continue reading

Blotter | New restaurant suffers $4k burglary in rash of Capitol Hill-area biz break-ins

See something others should know about? Email CHS or call/txt (206) 399-5959. You can view recent CHS Crime coverage here.

  • Single Shot burglary: A new Capitol Hill restaurant suffered a costly lesson in a weekend break-in. According to the SPD report on the incident, Summit Ave’s Single Shot suffered more than $4,000 in losses after somebody broke into the month-old venue next door to Top Pot Donuts and stole two computers and around $1,000 in cash. Police say the business was found unlocked and a key box located outside the restaurant had been damaged. The report also notes that police were told Single Shot did not yet have an alarm or video surveillance system in place “due to the fact that it had recently opened.”
  • E Union cafe burglary: A cafe in the 2000 block of E Union suffered a $500+ burglary earlier this month after an unknown thief busted the restaurant’s front door sometime over the weekend of November 9th: Continue reading

Hill Wonk | Geography — and affordability — defines community of place

We’ve asked Zachary Pullin, Vice President of the Capitol Hill Community Council, to contribute to CHS about community civics and politics on a semi-regular basis. If you’re an expert and want to share with the community in a recurring CHS column, we’d like to hear from you. This is his first post for CHS.

550190_10151496017543696_1846920479_nThe historic draw of Capitol Hill, its evolution into the nucleus of LGBTQ culture, is rooted in its mantle as a neighborhood that families moved away from. Housing was affordable, LGBTQ services were convenient, and jobs in downtown Seattle were close-by. Recently, however, our neighborhood is known for its skyrocketing rents, displacement of longtime residents, a sanitized culture, and rapid development.

When urban areas and inner-cities are “rediscovered,” with their high walkability and mixed-use development, naturally the complex and challenging conversation comes back to gentrification. Many Seattle neighborhoods see gentrification evolve over decades, framed as the revitalization of neighborhoods. On the exterior, it is positive, rapid growth meeting the demands of substantial population surge.

But, one person’s view of our neighborhood as revitalized may be another person’s characterization of our neighborhood as gentrified. Frankly, revitalization, reinvestment, or renewal of a neighborhood is not inherently bad, but unchecked gentrification challenges us to reflect on how our role in gentrifying a neighborhood transforms it, detrimentally.

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Proposed $87 million Madison Bus Rapid Transit is like light rail — without the rail

After retreating from the edge of catastrophe, Seattle’s public transit system may be en route to becoming a regional leader by combining the efficiency and prestige of light rail with the cost and flexibility of buses.

It’s called Bus Rapid Transit (BRT): essentially, a bus system that works like light rail. The City Council has coughed up $1 million to study a proposed $87 million BRT “corridor” along Madison, running from the waterfront up to 23rd Ave (by Madison Temple church and that psychic boutique shop).image02

To explain the project and get feedback from locals, the Seattle Department of Transportation will hold a community workshop about the Madison BRT corridor on Thursday from 5-7pm at the Silver Cloud Hotel on Broadway. Using “interactive design stations” inside the meeting room, SDOT will “present community-developed design ideas that focus on key intersections or a potential station location within each area. Each station will be staffed with engineers, planners, and urban designers to allow for an interactive conversation and sketching of design ideas to capture community ideas and feedback.”

Is this just a re-branded bus route?
Nope. Former mayor of Bogotá Enrique Peñalosa describes his city’s BRT, TransMilenio, like this: Continue reading

On the List | 12th Ave Arts, Donum sale at The Project Room, comics at the library, BAIT Seattle opening, Lobby’s last night

Capitol Hill’s big upcoming event is Thursday afternoon as the theater-powered mixed-use development 12th Ave Arts celebrates its grand opening.

Also this weekend, six local artists will come together in support of Capitol Hill’s The Project Room to host a two day sale event. Donum: a Sale of Contemporary Art and Fashion will take place on November 21 and 22nd from 1 to 7 PM. The artists will display and sell their works — 25% of their proceeds will in fact go to support The Project Room.

Born three years ago, E Pine’s The Project Room provides grant and giving-powered art programs to the public in an effort to maintain a free flow of art and creativity in the city. The organization has been holding workshops and various art events and presentations since its opening. “We are trying to raise money for The Project Room, support these artists and connect to new audiences,” Britt Rynearson, planner for the show and a Project Room board member, told CHS. Continue reading