Outdoor Weekend Frolics and Hunts

Here are some ideas for a few safe outdoor activities that are just around the corner for kids, teens, and adults. We can still have fun with masks and distance! Thanks for keeping it creative Kirkland. 

ScavHuntEye on the Prize Flyer
Eye on the Prize Scavenger Hunt

Calling all Teens - get off your screens and get downtown! This event is March 5th-7th and your 14-18-year-olds need to register by March 4th. Join the hunt through downtown Kirkland, solve the clues, find the hidden pictures, decode the cipher, and submit your final answer for a chance to win a gift card for coffee, food, and treats from these local merchants and more! Donors include: Ben & Jerry's, Sirena Gelato, Thruline Coffee, The Shake Shack, Coffee and Cone, Just Poke, Zeeks Pizza, Cafe Ladro, and The French Bakery.   Sign up for the Eye on the Prize teen scavenger hunt for a chance to win!  Thank you to Lake Washington High School PTSA for your partnership with this event.  Register for free at kirklandparks.net (course 10993)

 

Pot of Gold (002)
Pot of Gold Nugget Hunt
(how can you not attend something that uses the word nugget?)

You don’t need the luck of the Irish to participate in this event, just your peepers!  All kids between the ages of 4-8, join in the hunt for gold nuggets starting March 13-16 at McAuliffe Park.   Make sure you are in the main park located on the east side of 106th Ave.  Find a gold nugget, turn it over to see if you won a prize. Snap a photo and send to: Jvandiver@kirklandwa.gov to claim your prize.  Only one prize per person.  This event is free.  Remember to take your nugget with you!  The contest ends March 16th.  Register to participate now for event #11053 at kirklandparks.net.

Shamrockrun2021Orcasphoto<-Photo cred: Orcas Running

Orcarunning LWPT+Logo+Transparent+Flat+copy KirklandUrban_v_x2_4cp

Orca Running and Lake WA Physical Therapy's Kirkland Shamrock Adventure Run Hosted by Kirkland Urban (say that 3 times fast?!)

Shopping, living and dining center Kirkland Urban is home to the 2021 Kirkland Shamrock Adventure Run on Saturday, March 13 from 10-1:30.  Orca Running and Lake Washington Physical Therapy have partnered to bring back this race in the hopes the community can get outside and have fun while staying socially distant. Runners will visit local Kirkland retailers in the downtown Kirkland/Houghton areas for a family-friendly "choose your own adventure" fun-run and scavenger hunt. 

Runners will start and end at Kirkland Urban’s Urban Plaza Way. They will have one hour to collect as many tickets as possible from local participating retailers around downtown Kirkland, including Dough Zone, Power Hour 360 and Restore Hyper Wellness + Cryotherapy. Runners will return to the finish line to submit their tickets and collect their medal. Tickets will be used for a prize drawing that will take place at a later date. 

Prizes will be gift cards donated by local Kirkland retailers that will be mailed to winners after the race.

Registration is $25 for adults and $15 for kids 12 and under. Participants will receive their bib and a special collectors’ map in the mail before the race. For those with dogs, there is a special doggy registration add-on available for $10.

When participants register, they will sign up for a time slot to start the run. Groups of ten people will start every five minutes from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. to ensure there is no crowding. Registration is limited to 300 participants this year per social distancing guidelines.

Online pre-registration closes the day before the race at 8:00 p.m. For more information and registration, visit https://www.orcarunning.com/kirklandshamrockrun/.

Retailer specials for race participants include:

 


Talk to Me

Janis2021
For some reason, random people talk to me every time I wear my puffy gold metallic coat. It is a bit of a talking piece itself but I like to believe it has superpowers that repel the infamous 'Seattle Freeze.' I love it because its magic reminds me of normal days, pre-2020, when interacting with friendly Kirklanders was easy and every day.    Before we all fell mysteriously silenced and anonymous behind our masks.  I chatted with someone at the avocados at Costco (which are perfect right now btw) and then a lady even asked me where I thought she could find the dish soap.  Some small talk with the person behind me at the register topped off a stellar trip.  Eye contact.  Laughter. You have to take the wins and relative normalcy where you can.

In other puffy coat news, you should know that there is a "Puffy Jacket Pop-Up Dining Series" across the PNW (clearly I'm ready!). Columbia Hospitality announced the Feb 19th kickoff of six weeks of rustic food and drinks in a welcoming outdoor ambiance at 14 different hotels, resorts, and restaurants. Our very own Heathman Hotel is participating along with this list of great places to try around our region.

I also have some updates from Kirkland Urban and Totem Village to share.  So go put on your symbolic gold coat (and mask) and talk to some distanced strangers at some of these places.  They need your business. And know that you're making people smile. :-)

Kirkland Urban-

Kirkland Chamber of Commerce and Kirkland Downtown Association: moved in Jan 4th

Levue
Levue Nails & Spa
- just opened!

Coming Soon: Plantiful Superfoods plant-based restaurant, Vinason Pho & Grill, Dough Zone

Power Hour 360: one free month w/membership purchase + 2 free workout classes

Shake Shack: 3 new Korean-style items on the menu now thru 4/5 and a new Sugar Vanilla Shake.

Tutta Bella: unveiling their new Take n' Bake pizza (10-12 mins) and available anytime in the deli grab/go section.

Chainline Brewing: Happy Hour! Mon-Fri 12-5pm includes $1 off tap beers, pizza and pretzels. Tented outdoor seating welcomes kids and dogs.

 

Village at Totem Lake-

NEW stuff:

Don't Yell at Me (Q1 2021) - Boba Tea

Mayweather <--sadly that's not me in the ring
Mayweather Boxing + Fitness
(Q1 2021)- Become a champion for 45 mins a day learning from Floyd's techniques

Bok a Bok Fried Chicken (Q2 2021)- air-dried, hand-dipped, double-fried chicken (Lord help us!)

Sleep Number (Q2 2021)- Beds, pillow-top, and memory foam mattresses

Madison Reed (Q2 2021)- Luxurious hair color (yes, you hear all of their commercials on your podcasts). Their first "color bar" in WA State- services and product.

Things we knew about w/updated timelines:

  • Cinemark                                                   Q1 2021 (opening at limited capacity)
  • Silverlake Ramen                                            Q1 2021
  • Stack 571 Burger and Whiskey Bar™         Q2 2021
  • ShabuGen                                                  Q2 2021
  • Yuan Spa                                                     Q3 2021

Places you can currently wear your puffy coat and talk to strangers at The Village:

  • 203°F Coffee Co.
  • Chipotle
  • Dué Cucina
  • Joe’s Burgers
  • MOD Pizza
  • Panda Express
  • Salt & Straw
  • Trader Joe’s
  • Whole Foods Market
  • All The Best Pet Care  
  • Anthony Vince’ Nail Spa
  • Athleta
  • AutoZone
  • Evereve
  • Nordstrom Rack
  • lululemon
  • Ross Dress For Less
  • Sephora
  • Sweet Serenity
  • ULTA Beauty
  • Urban Tread
  • Zumiez
  • AT&T
  • HSBC Bank 
  • KeyBank
  • T-Mobile
  • Verizon
  • Vida Integrated Health
  • Wells Fargo
  • Xfinity

 

 

 

 

  


Kirkland Pho House Moving Downtown

DeliPhoHouse

The Kirkland Pho House, on 85th near Petco, is a reliable go-to on a chilly day to grab a big bowl of brothy deliciousness that can warm you from the inside out.  I always start with a fresh spring roll and then work my way to the chicken pho, delighting in the ritual of throwing in my own squirt of lime, bean sprouts, and sprigs of basil.  New store signs that go up in these times can create a panic, but never fear.  The Pho House is just gearing up to move to downtown Kirkland (110 Central Way) since their current shopping center is slated to be torn down.  They are currently still open in their location on 85th, but looking forward to continuing to see our (covered) faces downtown in their new spot in March or April. 


How Does Cupid Work During Covid?

Ladyyumvalentine
Don't let a pandemic drag down your Valentine's Day! Shop Local for your sweetie and remember that a fabulous meal can be the gateway to winning over a heart.  Looking for a Valentine's Meal in Kirkland? Check these options out, whether you prefer indoor, outdoor or take-out, don't procrastinate.

Hearth- Valentine's Dinner at Hearth ($75/pp) short rib/scallops/oysters 5-9pm 2/13 and 14. Or Pie on the Fly Valentine special ($65 for two) takeout available with salad side and chocolate strawberry truffle. Submit by 2/11 for 13 or 14 pickup.

Le Grand Bistro @Carillon Point-another great outdoor patio! And of course, a special Valentine's take-out menu that is a 4-course meal for 2 ($150) on 2/12, 13, 14. Get your order in by 2/9 @ 8pm unless it sells out before then.

Cafe Juanita- Well some of you were clearly thinking ahead because they are already booked for 2/12-13 with a rest for their team afterward and a continuation of amazing pickup options moving forward.

DeRU- Order by 2/8, pickup 2/13 after 12 pm.  A la carte menu and, of course, don't forget their AMAZING slices of cake.

Lynn's- Order 24 hrs in advance, pick up on Sunday 12-5, 3 courses $45 or a $35 prix fixe menu (a fantastic value!)

Volterra- $60 per person limited indoor seating on 2/14 with a very temptingly delicious looking menu.

Lizzy Kate Teas- Valentine's Tea & Truffle Pairing Set- 4 favorite teas to pair with four different flavored chocolate truffles. Pickup, drop on a doorstep or chip locally or nationally. 

Lady Yum- Valentine's Day Gift Packs. These will bring a smile to any human's face. 

Feast and Bottle & Bull are still working on their Valentine's Menu, so check back on their website in the next few days! 

Sweet Cloud Gifts- special chocolates for your special person starting at $8. Hello heart-shaped truffles!

The BeachHouse Bar & Grill- planning to offer some Valentine dinner special that wkend along with their regular menu.

Ristorante Paradiso- regular menu with some extra Valentine's specials that are still in the works.


Darn It, Momoya

Momoyasushi
Our family is mourning the loss of our go-to sushi pickup spot that was hidden in a strip mall in Rose Hill. Where else can you get a 'sushi plate' for $20 and it's delightfully all of the items you like to order anyway? Momoya Sushi & Sake House will be greatly missed, pre-COVID it always had a steady flow of loyalists that flocked to their fresh rolls and chilled sake which paired perfectly with the casual atmosphere and friendly familiar service.  Even in the past year there always seemed to be an hour wait for pickup orders if you didn't call before 5pm. This closure has been coming for a few months now, but it doesn't make it hurt any less. RIP Mo.


Heart of Kirkland Scavenger Hunt

Heart of Kirkland Final Flyer_ (002)

Want to bring a little action and solve a mystery instead of the usual monotony of your days? Nothing like a good old scavenger hunt to mix things up.  Get yourself ready for this month-long citywide contest where you collect a weekly clue to help solve a final riddle and be entered to win a prize drawing. Why not??!! This is for the 18+ crowd because you could be winning an overnight for two at the Heathman with dinner at Hearth.  Woot! There are lots of other fun sponsors/gift cards. Sign up on www.kirklandparks.net. It's FREE, but your voluntary donation will go towards the Kirkland Parks & Community Service Scholarship Fund that helps enable families to participate in programs. 


The "Plug" Every Parent Needs to Know About

This is truly frightening.

With this last year behind us, it seems not much surprises me anymore, but we need to sound the alarm on this one. This is happening in our schools here and now.  A friend from Redmond messaged me in a panic that she recently learned about “Plugs” on Snapchat and Instagram.  I had never heard of this. Her daughter’s 12-year-old friend used a 'plug' to buy weed in Kirkland.  TWELVE.  Buying drugs quickly and easily online using social media platforms that don’t have a paper trail.  These dealers/fellow students/adults that are selling these products apparently will come to your house or a nearby meeting spot so you don’t have to know how to drive, or even leave the comfort of your pandemic pajamas.  Nobody knows what they are REALLY buying and putting in their bodies, not to mention the buyers are often minors  10-15 years old.  When I asked my 15yo son if he knew what a ‘plug’ was, he said he did.  And so do my friends’ children when they asked.  This trend is alive here in Kirkland/Seattle at this very moment.

This video in this UK article is worth watching. https://www.vice.com/en/article/n7j75k/buying-pills-coke-mdma-instagram-snapchat?fbclid=IwAR1-K4L6FNWUT7Sm_nPeCe28TK5NoxVcT2lrHyL7t4xePj77tz4NwvthDkY

How do we as a community help prevent this troublesome trend from escalating?  Education, prevention, regulations, let's get this on the radar of every leader and influencer.  Many have not even heard of it yet. So pick your jaw up off the floor and let's go.

 


BobaLust Opens in Bridle Trails

Bobalustexterior        Bobalustdrink          BobalustInterior   

It sounds kind of naughty, but it's actually sweet. This new boba tea shop, called BobaLust,  opened a few weeks ago next to Ace Hardware. The lobby is the size of a large dancefloor, which may come in handy later, but for now, is plenty of room for your socially-distanced pickup.  I got my kids a strawberry smoothie, a mango slushie, and myself a Thai tea (all +boba). Their boba is fresh and sweet, and I was intent on not losing any in the crushed ice.  Another alluring fact would be their pricing, which is $4.50 -5.50 per drink including tax, which definitely beats other places. 

I didn't really discover the joy of boba tea until my trip to Asia (remember when we used to travel?) where these shops are commonplace and there is usually a long line.  At first, those funny little gelatinous balls made me squeamish, but now I treasure poking my wide straw through the taught plastic and enjoying the delightful drink (always ask for 50% sweetness, it's still sweet) with chewy boba surprises along the way. What is Boba you ask? It is tapioca starch from the cassava root. You're thinking about trying it, aren't' you? It's only weird the first few times and then it's strangely addicting. 

Bobalust has four other Seattle-area locations. Their current hours at the Kirkland shop are Saturday-Thurs 1-9 pm and Fri/Sat 1-10 pm. Follow them on FB and Insta. Comment back here with your favorite drink discovery!

 Bobalustmenu