CHS Pics | Deaf drama camp takes the stage at Volunteer Park

As plans come together for a new Volunteer Park amphitheater, the old one stays plenty busy hosting events big and small. Sunday, the venue hosted the 5th annual Vibrations music festival. Saturday, CHS found a smaller event underway as the kids from the Deaf Spotlight Drama Camp gathered in front of parents and loved ones to perform scenes and show off some of their new skills. After some on-stage drama, the kids described their process, a few awards were handed out, and, of course, proud audience members snapped some pictures. Continue reading

The Real World ends production on Capitol Hill for show’s 32nd season

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(Image: @mtvchallenge28 via Twitter)

The time has come for the Real World cast and crew to pack up and bid farewell to Capitol Hill. Filming has wrapped for the 32nd season of the reality TV show that will feature a group of strangers living and partying on Capitol Hill, according to fan sites tracking the production.

18 years after the first season in Seattle, Real World producers staked out a new set in the 12th Ave Ballou Wright building between Pike and Pine. The office space-turned-Real World house was previously occupied by digital design firm Creature, which filed for bankruptcy shortly after leaving the space in May.MTV representatives have not returned calls on the status of the production. A representative for building owner Hunters Capital told CHS the space will likely be put back into use as an office. The show’s production company leased the space through September.

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Tent City 3 wraps up summer stay on Capitol Hill

Dozens of Capitol Hill residents moved out of the neighborhood over the past week. Tent City 3, as usual, is on the move again.

CHS reported on the homeless community’s short summer stay at the corner of 19th and Aloha as the group filled the parking lot of St. Joseph’s into lines of tents, known as dorms, with room for around 100 residents along with tents that served as a computer room, a kitchen, a laundry room, and a community dining hall. The group also stayed at St. Joe’s in 2006 and again in 2011. Always on the move, residents told CHS Tent City 3 will next settle in Shoreline. Continue reading

What the new Volunteer Park Amphitheater could look like

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One of the four concepts ready for feedback (Images: Ora Architects)

Replacing the no-frills brick-and-concrete Volunteer Park Amphitheater has been talked about for years. Thanks to a nonprofit championing the cause, the first design concepts are finally complete.

ORA Architects and Walker Macy Landscape Architects developed four concepts using feedback from the public and more than 30 performance organizations. All the designs include a shelter, backstage space, and bathrooms built into the structure as required by the city.

The Volunteer Park Trust is holding an open house at Miller Community Center on Wednesday to take public feedback on the designs. Construction is slated to start in 2017 with a grand opening scheduled for December 2018. The project will require approval from the parks department. Continue reading

And what the Seattle Asian Art Museum expansion could look like, too…

(Images: LMN Architects)

(Images: LMN Architects)

As Volunteer Park’s 83-year-old museum prepares to undergo its first major upgrade, the Seattle Art Museum is seeking public input on the plans. Community outreach meetings are scheduled for September and October.

Preliminary designs for the Asian Art Museum call for adding at least 7,500-square-feet of new gallery and event space, as well as an education studio and art storage space. A terrace, seat wall, and rock garden are part of the plans for outdoor improvements to the backside of the museum. Continue reading

‘The Pledge’ stickers help Capitol Hill businesses tell homeless how they can help: water, food, restrooms, more

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Silvernail and Dubs outside Kaladi Brothers E Pike (Image: CHS)

The Pledge Sticker Example

Devin Silvernail has been trekking all over Seattle this summer trying to start a movement of businesses helping the homeless in their neighborhoods by placing stickers in their windows. He has made pretty solid progress — even with a big bump in the road.

The program’s stickers are black with white symbols letting people in need know that cafe or shop will let them use the bathroom, charge their phone, or get a drink of water.

“Whoever wants to do it can do it,” Silvernail told CHS.

On Wednesday, another business decided to participate, bringing the total to 12 across Seattle, including three in Capitol Hill. He hopes to reach 15 businesses by the end of August. But he did hit a setback with one of the first dozen.

Kaladi Brothers Coffee on E Pike was another location participating in The Pledge. Before joining, the leads at the shop used their creative know-how to start their own project to help those in need called the Community Card. Sean Dubs, assistant manager at Kaladi Brothers, said he hoped the Community Card and The Pledge program could grow together. But this week, Kaladi’s ownership decided to exit both programs over concerns about non-customers entering the building also home to Gay City the nonprofit that sublets the cafe space to the Alaska-headquartered coffee chain. It was a disappointing development for the efforts, Dubs said, but he is hoping to continue his work on the Community Card and working with Silvernail and The Pledge. UPDATE: Gay City referred CHS’s questions to Kaladi management for more details. We’ll follow up when the Seattle cafe’s manager is back from vacation. The building’s owner, Chip Ragen, tells CHS he wasn’t involved in the decision as Gay City manages the sub-lease with Kaladi and that he hopes to learn more about the program.

UPDATEx2: Kaladi has responded to our request for more information with a letter documenting their concerns about the program and why they decided to drop out:

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The full letter is below the jump.

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CHS Pics | Seattle Acoustic Festival at All Pilgrims

Newly expanded to three days — “We wanted it to stay small and focused but we’ve decided to let it grow a little bit” — the Seattle Acoustic Festival’s 2016 edition started off Friday with small crowds and a non-amped-up night of music inside Broadway’s All Pilgrim. The festival continues through Sunday night. Continue reading

CHS Pics | This week in Capitol Hill pictures

Another Shit Day in Paradise

The CHS Flickr Pool contains more than 32,000 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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Capitol Hill Pets | Mr. Squeeze of Interlaken

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Mr. Squeeze spends his days overlooking Interlaken Park — when he’s not doing outreach work for the Pacific Northwest Herpetological Society. Mr. Squeeze helps people learn about snakes by visiting schools, fairs, and expositions. He is a a 5’6” Dumeril’s Boa whose ancestors came from Madagascar. Mr. Squeeze is three years old. A rare snake in the trade, he is “very mellow” and spends a lot of time around children in classrooms as an introduction to holding or even seeing snakes for the first time. According to his friend David, Mr. Squeeze is the “most easygoing of all the six species living in the house.”

We ask photographer Alex Garland to follow marchers in the rain and do crazy things like trying to make yet another picture of yet another huge apartment building look interesting. We thought we’d ask him to do something a little more fun. Capitol Hill Pets is a semi-regular look at our furry, fuzzy, feathered, and finned friends found out and about on Capitol Hill. Are you a Capitol Hill Pet we should know about? Drop us a line.

Liberty celebrates a decade of craft cocktails and sushi on Capitol Hill

15th Ave E is a place where businesses tend to stick around. The neighborhood commercial district is still home to a century-old cobbler and one of the area’s longest standing mechanics. Ten years ago it was still supporting a church-run thrift shop called Trinkets & Treasures.

The wicker furniture and dusty vinyl records left in 2006, but in its place came a bar that has become a neighborhood institution in its own right. This month Liberty celebrates 3,800+ consecutive days of business on Capitol Hill.

Owner Andrew Friedman has been at the helm every one of those days and plans to continue being a constant presence even as ownership changes loom for the cocktail and sushi lounge. “I really enjoy the community aspect of a neighborhood bar,” Friedman said.

The craft cocktail craze was still a few years off in Seattle when Friedman opened Liberty in 2006. Having prior service industry experience, Friedman decided to take a shot at opening a bar when he walked  by15th Ave space and noticed it had become available. “I knew I wanted to open a bar … I was dreaming of being on Capitol Hill,” he said.

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Lummi Nation raises environmental awareness by bringing totem pole to Capitol Hill

A 22-foot totem pole made one of its first stops on a 5,000-mile journey Thursday night at Capitol Hill’s St. Mark’s.

The Lummi Nation House of Tears Carvers brought the pole to St. Mark’s Cathedral to celebrate the nation’s victory against coal export at “Xwe’chi’eXen” — Cherry Point.

Seattle City Council member and former chair of the Washington chapter of the Sierra Club Mike O’Brien spoke at the event that brought together Lummi Nation members, environmentalists, representatives of Earth Ministry and the Sierra Club, and interested members of the public for a ceremony and celebration.

“The work that’s happening here today gives me hope,” O’Brien said. Continue reading

Construction begins on The Danforth, home to Whole Foods and 265 ‘luxury apartments’ on First Hill

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Danforth Rendering 1The 16-story tower where Whole Foods plans to open by 2018 will be filled with “luxury apartments” and will be known as The Danforth, the project’s developers said Thursday in an announcement marking the start of construction at Broadway and Madison.

“We expect The Danforth to be a destination for residents and workers of not just First Hill and Capitol Hill but also surrounding neighborhoods including downtown Seattle, Madison Park, Madison Valley and the Central District,” Todd Seneker, portfolio manager for Columbia Pacific Advisors, said in the “alternative investment” firm’s announcement. Continue reading