A news blog for Seattle's Phinney Ridge and Greenwood neighborhoods


Celebration of new 63rd Street/Aurora Avenue underpass mural is Friday

August 13th, 2014 by Doree

Just a reminder that the neighborhood is invited to a celebration of the new North 63rd Street/Aurora Avenue underpass mural from 6-7:30 p.m. this Friday, in the grassy area next to the mural, across from Green Lake. Food and beverages will be provided.


Dozens of volunteers helped paint the mural in July. Photo by Pamela Jaynes.

Volunteers raised $5,000 from neighbors and local businesses to pay for paint, anti-graffiti coating and a maintenance contract.

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Neighbors begin painting temporary mural at former Greenwood Quick Stop

August 5th, 2014 by Doree

Plenty of people showed up today to help paint the temporary mural on the former Greenwood Quick Stop at the corner of Greenwood Avenue and 81st Street. Thanks to Ann Bowden, who helped paint, for the pictures.

Here’s the south wall in progress:


And the west wall:


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Neighbors invited to paint temporary mural on old Greenwood Quick Stop building

August 2nd, 2014 by Doree

Seattle Parks and Recreation is hosting a painting party from 12-8 p.m. Tuesday (in conjunction with the annual Night Out Against Crime) to create a temporary mural on the old Greenwood Quick Stop building on the northeast corner of Greenwood Avenue North and North 81st Street. All painting materials will be provided.

The design was created by Michiko Tanaka, the same artist who designed the new 63rd Street/Aurora Avenue underpass mural. When I stopped by the site this afternoon, Tanaka has just painted the mural’s outlines.


Seattle Parks and Recreation purchased the site three years ago for a future park, but development funding is not currently available (but is included in the new Metropolitan Parks District proposal on Tuesday’s ballot). The Greenwood Quick Stop moved three blocks north several months ago, and Aloha Ramen moved to Lake City in February. Manna Teriyaki is the only business remaining in the building.

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Vote on design for the new 63rd Street mural

May 21st, 2014 by Doree

A group of dedicated neighbors has been working hard to bring back a mural to the North 63rd Street underpass. The old mural was painted over by the city two years ago after problems with graffiti.

Gray wall-resized

The volunteer group put out a call to artists in March and received about 10 submissions. They’ve narrowed it down to the top three, and now they’re letting the community decide. See the designs in person at several community events over the next couple of weeks and vote on your favorite.

Stop by Umpqua Bank, 7120 Greenwood Ave. N., from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Thursday and Friday (May 22-23) and again on May 29-30 to view and vote. You can also vote at Bingo Karaoke at the Greenwood Senior Center, 525 N. 85th St., from 7-10 p.m. on Friday, May 30; or at the Phinney Neighborhood Association Garden Party, 6532 Phinney Ave. N., from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, May 31. See the project website for a full list of voting opportunities (more will be added).

Here are the three finalists:

63rd Street underpass #2-resized


63rd street underpass #4-resized


63rd underpass #1-resized

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Naked City’s new beer garden officially called the Walrus, will be for all ages

June 12th, 2013 by Doree

Naked City’s new beer garden in the adjacent parking lot will officially be called the Walrus Beer Garden, in honor of the Walrus blues tavern that was originally on that site before burning down three decades ago.

Local muralist Henry painted a large mural of two walruses on one wall. And the artists who created the colorful arson mural that used to stand next to Taproot Theatre down the street, have been restoring it and added a portrait of John Lee Hooker, who once played at the original Walrus tavern.


The grand opening for the beer garden, at 8564 Greenwood Ave. N., will be Friday, June 21, and Saturday, June 22. That Friday night will feature live jazz. That Saturday will feature an all-you-can-eat crawfish boil for $25 a person, live music and games.

Naked City’s full menu will be available, along with table service, in the beer garden. All ages are welcome, but dogs are not.

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Arson mural re-installed in Naked City’s new beer garden

June 4th, 2013 by Doree

The mural that once covered the wooden fence where four Greenwood businesses were destroyed in a 2009 arson, has been reborn at Naked City Brewery & Taphouse’s new beer garden.


The so called “arson mural” was created by local artists as a sign of hope and rebirth for the neighborhood, after more than a dozen arsons terrorized the neighborhood over the course of several months. The worst arson destroyed four restaurants next to Taproot Theatre, which owned the building housing those restaurants. Taproot built a fence to cover the scarred ground from view, and artists painted a mural depicting neighborhood scenes, such as the Greenwood Car Show and a firefighter saving a cat, plus a phoenix rising from the flames.

The mural was taken down when Taproot began work on a new building in that space. That new building will house a second theater, scene shop, offices and a cafe. Taproot’s addition will open late this summer.



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Taproot Theatre expansion on track for late-summer completion

January 30th, 2013 by Doree

Taproot Theatre’s expansion is coming along, as crews get the site ready for the modular construction building to be installed sometime this summer.


The back side of Taproot Theatre’s existing building is on the right.

Taproot’s Producing Artistic Director, Scott Nolte, tells me the plan is for the new building to be finished in late summer. With modular construction, the building components are completed offsite, then installation and finish work takes about four to six weeks.

The expansion takes the place of the former Eleanor Roosevelt Building, which housed four restaurants and burned in the Oct. 23, 2009, arson. The new building will include a second theater, dressing rooms, offices, scene workshop and a café and wine bar at 208 N. 85th Street.

If you’re wondering about the huge mural that was installed along the construction fence two months after the arson, Nolte said it is currently in storage, waiting for someone to come forward with a new site for it. Nolte said the mural would likely need to be touched up by the artists first.



The mural used to cover most of the length of the construction fence.

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Committee forming to replace mural on 63rd Street underpass

September 13th, 2012 by Doree

The long-time mural on the 63rd Street underpass beneath Aurora Avenue North was recently painted over by the city, because of continuing problems with graffiti. Now, a group has stepped forward to paint a new mural.

Our 36th District State Representative Mary Lou Dickerson has assembled a small group to apply for a Small and Simple Project Grant to create new artwork for the underpass at 63rd Street and Aurora. The project will need a steering committee to work with the community, artists, muralists,city departments and the PNA to design and execute the new mural. The 46th Street Mural Project provides a successful example for these efforts.

Even if you are unable to serve on the committee, you can contribute to the matching grant not only with money but through in-kind donations by attending meetings or volunteering services (worth $20/hour!).

The organizational meeting for the 63rd Street Mural Project will take place on Wednesday, September 19 at 7PM on Phinney Ridge. If you would like to serve on the Steering Committee or have other questions contact Kerry Fowler at 206-412-5231 or kwfowler-at-gmail-dot-com.

The exact location of the meeting will be provided to those who call or email to join the Steering Committee.

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Phinney Ridge muralist paints ‘graffiti’ on Aurora fence at business owners’ request

August 14th, 2012 by Doree

Phinney Ridge resident Emily Gussin tells us she painted a graffiti-looking mural on a fence at Aurora Avenue North and North 47t Street. Gussin says the fence was constantly covered in graffiti, and she thought that a graffiti-looking mural could work to prevent more graffiti.

Here’s a portion of the mural.

I did the mural…after having talked with the business owners for a few weeks. They were sick of having to re-paint the fence every week or so to cover up tags, so they allowed me to put up ‘graffiti as graffiti prevention’. I am trying to work with other businesses who have walls or fences that get hit with tags often, because murals are one of the best ways to prevent that vandalism. I…am talking with a few other business owners at the moment, I just completed another one in the UDistrict. I am hoping to get a few more walls done before summer is up.

If anyone is interested in such a mural, please contact Emily Gussin at emily.gussin@gmail.com.

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