Volunteer Park tree #98 has fallen taking a chunk of the amphitheater wall with it

A large tree with a thin coating of snow came crashing to earth in Volunteer Park this morning knocking loose a dozen or so bricks from the meadow amphitheater wall on its way down. UPDATE: That thin coating of snow apparently came post-fall. @kevinpurcell says the tree came down Tuesday night.

Slog first noted the fall in this post which is also an ode to the infamous amphitheater men’s restroom — a structure the giant tree missed by about five feet.


We were told by a father and son checking out the trunk of the fallen giant that it is labeled Volunteer Park tree #98. Its destiny, we’re told, is to be mulched and not turned into furniture like some of the wood reclaimed at falls we’ve covered involving private property.

Damage to the amphitheater is minimal. According to Seattle Parks spokesperson Dewey Potter, the department can handle minor work with its own crews but should it need more significant repairs an alternative source of funding will have to be found.

We’re trying to find out more about the history of the stage — these kind of news items are a great excuse to dig into the history of the Hill — but can’t yet pin a date. This blurb from the city notes that a performance pavilion was designed into the park by the Olmsted Brothers back in 1912 — but that pavilion apparently stood where the Seattle Asian Art Museum stands today. If you know more about the meadow stage, let us know, too.

6 thoughts on “Volunteer Park tree #98 has fallen taking a chunk of the amphitheater wall with it

  1. always love these shots of beautiful old seattle. We need to start planting some serious trees..not the little crappy ones like on the east side of QFC, replaced when that driver killed it. these litle park grade trees are less likely to survive for a multitiude of reasons…Volunteer park looks so luch and green and full.

  2. Wouldn’t that be nice? Can we find out the history of the bandshell, when and why it was replaced with a (lackluster) brick wall? There is a beautiful old bandshell in Golden Gate Park that was recently restored. It’s too bad Seattle didn’t keep this one.

  3. Checking the old Seattle Times Historical Archives via the SPL website, I found a photo and caption from June 30, 1975:
    Tim Gimmell of the jazz group Rorschach played clarinet for a crowd which attended dedication ceremonies yesterday of Volunteer Park’s new band shell. The concert was the first of the park department’s Music in the Parks series this summer.