Shamrock Run 2020

Lake Washington Physical Therapy's annual Shamrock Run will take place on Saturday, March 14th. This 5K starts at 9am and benefits local charities. Registration is $45, and good news, you can get up to $10 off by referring friends.  Run, walk,  push a stroller, walk a dog or dance a jig, it's up to you! After your St. Patrick's Day exercise duties, roll on over to Wilde Rover for a pint at the post-race party. 

Polar Plunge 2020: Are you Ready to Brave the Cold?

PolarPlunge2009 011
I think you are. I mean, why not? Unless you have a heart condition.  Or you're an infant. Or have pneumonia perhaps.  But aside from those few exceptions you ALL should be ready to participate in this frigidly awesome annual Kirkland tradition on Jan 1st @ 1pm in Marina Park.   The forecast looks like rain, so you'll have the advantage of being pre-moistened before you expose yourself to the rest of us in addition to the 48 degree air and 48.2 degree water.   The site with the water temp info says "this temperature is too cold to swim," (duh)- which is exactly why we do it! It feels good to be a rebel especially when you bend the rules with hundreds of your soon-to-be new friends and neighbors.  So show up.  Hang by the bonfire.  Arrive a little early with your towel, warm clothes/boots/hat, and water shoes.  Or dress like a clown! Whatever makes you happy as you start your 2020.  ~j


Good Health and More Holiday Cheer

After my daughter was sick for a full 2 weeks and I *thought* I was in the clear, lightning struck and I went down in a ball of flames.  Today is the first time I have dried my hair and stepped foot outside in 3 days.  The fresh air was pretty fantastic after previously feeling like someone removed the bones from my body and boiled me in a 102 degree pot of nauseous serum.   I had all sorts of interesting Kirklandy things to tell you but my fingers didn't have the energy to type and my eyes couldn't stay open for more than 30 mins at a time. Sad story, I know, but it was good to get that out of the way early this season.  And so thankful that my clothes don't make my skin ache anymore! 

It's a good reminder of the importance of our wellness. Hopefully you all are staying healthy and remembering to take care of yourself this season?? 

Here's what I've got (from my recently pretty limited point of view)...

Musical Holiday Lights on the CKC

Join your Kirkland neighbors on December 13th for an evening of caroling, hot cocoa, the Seahawks’ Blitz, alpacas, a photo booth, and the fifth annual musical holiday lights on the Cross Kirkland Corridor! The alpacas and photo booth will be ready starting at 5:00 p.m., and at 5:30 Mayor Penny Sweet will flip the switch to turn on a show featuring 25,000 LEDs custom-programmed to holiday music by Google Kirkland engineers. Parking is limited, so those who can are encouraged to take public transportation, bike or walk to the show.

The event is free and attendees are encouraged to bring donations in the form of unwrapped toys for LifeWire and non-perishable food for Hopelink.

What: Musical Holiday Lights on the Cross Kirkland Corridor

When: Friday, December 13, 5:00-6:30 p.m., Photo booth opens at 5:00 p.m., lights at 5:30 p.m.

Where: The Family Fitness and Play Area on the Cross Kirkland Corridor near the Google campus (Approximate address is 499 7th Ave S, Kirkland, WA 98033 - click here for directions:


Kirkland Urban is doing a Winter Festival each Saturday approaching Christmas from 2-8pm.  Family fun, arts/crafts, Santa, music and more. 

The 12 K's of Christmas
is Sun 12/15- You can still sign up and don't worry, there's a Kids' Dash, 5K or 12K. 


How was the Holiday Home tour on Fri? Did you go? I had to give my ticket away so I didn't contaminate everyone.  Missing Winterfest too, darn, fill me in please if you went. 






What Happened to Thanksgiving?

I barely have my Halloween stuff put away and already there is Christmas music in every store and my pumpkin spice latte has been marginalized by the suggestion of seasonal peppermint and eggnog flavors in a trendy festive cup.  My daughter is excitedly sketching her plans for outdoor holiday lights in our yard.  Friends are ahead of the curve on their holiday card photos.  But what happened to Thanksgiving?  Does anyone else find it ironic that the holiday that is dedicated to slowing down and giving thanks is the one getting glossed over as an on-ramp to Christmas? 

It felt good to get that off of my chest. OK, here we go. with all sorts of holiday things you may want to know about. Get your calendar ready.

19th Annual Hopelink Turkey Trot
- Sunday 11/24. This 5K family fun run and walk is always a community fave. Registration caps at 1500 people, so hurry and register now ($40).

And, here we go... onto Christmas in chronological order..hohoho..

Free Photo w/Santa at Anko
- this Sunday 11/17 11am-3pm. Avoid long lines and expensive photographers! Reserve a time slot here to get your instant digital pic with the big guy in the red suit. Dogs are always welcome too, bring your pooch!

Downtown Holiday Wine Walk
- Friday 11/22 6-9pm. You know the drill on these fun stumble-around-town events ($25).  Get tickets now before it sells out! 


Holiday Home Tour
- Fri 12/6 10am-7pm. 23rd annual opportunity to help support the Assistance League of the Eastside while touring local homes decorated for the holidays. Tickets are $35/each and you can purchase online now. Here's a video preview

Sat 12/7 3-6pm Marina Park. Food trucks, sledding hill (huh?), bonfires and all around holiday cheer!


Spooky Halloweeny Things to Know

If you are feeling the leaf-kicking, costume-wearing pumpkin-carving spirit, you'd better pay attention to this lineup for the weekend. Boo!

Halloween Parade 017 <--don't mess with this cowboy (circa 2006). man I miss that little guy

PeeWee Monster Bash
- Fri 10/25 10am-noon at the North Kirkland Community Center

Definitely kooky and not so much spooky.  Bring your 1-5 year old toddling bundles of cuteness over for Halloween themed carnival activities such as a cookie walk, swamp fishing for treats, crafts, a monster movement maze, story-time and more.  Toy prizes for all attendees, but there's no room for strollers so keep those bad boys at home.  This one sells out so register here or call 425-587-3336.


EventPhotoFull_Zombie Wine Walk 1232x760 DIGITAL (1)
Zombie Wine Walk
- Fri 10/25 6-9pm starting at The Heathman Hotel. 

After a morning with the toddlers, this is the time for the Mommy Zombies (and daddies and such) to rise up from dead and walk the streets of Kirkland in search of wine and shopping. This is clearly for the 21+ crowd and the non-refundable tickets are $25/ea. Get your tickets here.


Pumpkins in the Par
k- Sat 10/26 12-3, Marina Park

It's a FREE fall harvest festival in the heart of downtown Kirkland. Carnival games, pumpkins, farm animals, vendors and a pop-up farmer's market will be going on while you sip your pumpkin latte (hopefully in the sun, says the weather now).  Dogs and children will have a costume contest and then you can gather at 1:45 with your littles for the 2pm parade.   Have your treat bags on the ready, because from 3-6pm participating shops (indicated by a balloon outside) downtown will be anxiously awaiting your trick-or-treaters.  Teal balloons are peanut-free merchants and orange balloons are not. 


Crossing Kirkland 2019

Crossing Kirkland
is a citywide festival along the Cross Kirkland Corridor on Saturday Sept 7th. The for-neighbors-by-neighbors event debuted in 2017 and draws thousands of visitors with a mix of food trucks, games, craft projects, dance, music, community organizations, and other activities. Three neighborhood-sponsored stations stretch from Feriton Spur in the south up to 7th Ave in the north. Participants bike, walk, and take advantage of city-provided shuttles to see the whole event. 

This year the Selfie Hunt Contest encourages neighbors to take selfies with each other and redeem them for prizes donated by local businesses. The 2019 event will occur on Saturday, Sept 7 from 11a-3p. Crossing Kirkland is powered by volunteer neighbors and financial support from the Google, SRM Development. McLeod Autobody, Kirkland Parks Foundation, and PCC.



For a bit more detail, here’s a list of activities across 3 stations (here’s a map of the event):

  • Meet your neighbors and win a prize in the Selfie Hunt Contest (every neighborhood is assigned different colored bead necklaces. Take a selfie with someone from every different Kirkland neighborhood to qualify for a prize)
  • Make pots out of newspaper and plant a seed with Seattle Tilth
  • Create Sun Catchers with Kirkland Art Center
  • Identify birds with Eastside Audubon
  • Learn how to hula dance with Halau Hula O Makanaokalani
  • Get a native plant tattoo from Green Kirkland
  • Tune up your bike with Kirkland Bicycle
  • Make a bracelet with Houghton Neighborhood Association
  • Watch a K-Pop performance by ICS Dancers
  • Play in a bouncy house
  • Tune in with the Kirkland Ham Radio Group
  • Enjoy your favorite animal in balloon form

There are a bunch of exciting new food trucks this year:

  • Dreamy Drinks
  • Yummy 8 Lunchbox
  • Stacks Burgers
  • Chicago West
  • Tabassum (central Asian, written up in Seattle Times)
  • 314 Pie (sweet and savory)
  • Main St. Gyro
  • Zaytoona
  • Bees Mellows (smores!)

Summerfest is July 26-28: Volunteers Needed


Volunteering for Kirkland Summerfest feels good and gives back to the community, too!  This event is just around the corner so start clicking to sign up to help.

KEXP presents Kirkland Summerfest 2019, the city's premier music and arts festival — returning for its 8th year, this three-day tour de force boasts dozens of live performances, outdoor entertainment venues, an 11 acre KidZone, purveyors of fine foods, local beers and wines and interactive activities. This festival returns to the picturesque shores of Lake Washington July 26, 27, 28, 2019. With over 35,000 attendees, Summerfest is Kirkland’s signature event of the year.

How it works:

What do you get? More shifts = more benefits

1 volunteer shift: Receive a Kirkland Summerfest sweet tee, entry to the beer garden (no cover charge for you all weekend long with your wristband) and 6 drink tokens (equal to 2 drinks, depending on your drink of choice.)

2 volunteer shifts: You get all of the 1 volunteer shift stuff PLUS additional drink tokens (15 tokens total)!

Must be over 21 with valid ID to enter beer garden.

Groups volunteering together- Please call or email so we can find a role that best fits your group needs and positions.

Volunteering with kids, or as a teen- please be aware that there are minimum age requirements from the City or State for many positions. Please pay attention to these requirements when registering. 

The beneficiary of Summerfest is Chump Change Foundation, promoting volunteerism and raising money for nonprofits. We thank you for your support in our efforts to give back to our community through our local nonprofits.

How to sign up: > Get Involved > Volunteer > Get Tickets

*There are also some paid positions for 21+ year old men/women that can help with set up and clean up ($16/hr)

Questions? or call Kate at 425-736-6515

Kirkland's 20th Annual 4th of July Celebration

4th of July 2006 002 <-----Kirkland 4th circa 2006

As we are all anxiously waiting for these clouds to burn off, I thought I'd share 4th of July schedule with you! Official info is here.

  • Early hour of your choosing- send the early riser in your house to put your chairs/blankets in a prime spectating location along the parade route
  • 10am- Kids start decorating their bikes and selves in Marina Pavilion. Say hello to my girls, this is their favorite volunteering gig all year.
  • 11:30- Kids parade starts.  Pets welcome.  Prepare yourself for the cuteness.
  • 12pm- Community parade starts at the corner of Central and Market St.  Sit back/relax and watch, catch some candy.
  • (move your chairs over to Marina or Heritage Park, hang out, go home/take a nap, eat a hot dog/drink a beer and then...)
  • 10:15 Fireworks show starts off the water by Marina Park.  Love the big BOOM.

You can also donate to help bridge the gap in expenses for putting on this great event.

Oh, and try to walk or bike, parking will be terrible.  More than usual, haha.  Be safe and Happy 4th!

PS- I've been busy trying to update the look of the blog (a work in progress)and move all of you awesome subscribers over to another contact mgmt tool. So hopefully you get this email just once and it looks normal. I'm sure you'll let me know if it's not :-)



Hovering Near the PANIC button

IMG_3582 <--take THAT big bad snowstorm!

Unless you are living in your basement and haven't left the house in 48 hours, you should know there is a bit of a frenzy encompassing Kirkland and our surrounding areas.  The threat of a Snow-mageddon is upon us. This phenomenon is evidenced by extreme traffic jams, grocery store gridlock and generally frantic grouchy people everywhere. It's all my mom can talk about....slippery I have a generator...canned foods?...argh!  This storm had better be FO'REAL because there is some serious personal energy just going into the pre-management phase.

Costcoline <--that teeny little spot is the check-out guy's head at the front of the Costco line.

Here's are some snippets of my day for you:

  • Field calls from mom. Peppered with 1,000 questions on weather/preparedness.
  • Steve locates the driveway salt in our garage. It's a good start.
  • I glare at the recycling bin in our garage that has started overflowing onto the floor. I can smell last week's trash.  Please oh please let Waste Mgmt be able to get their trucks out next week.
  • My workout partner, who has some sort of degree in weather/meteorology, raves about the accuracy of this amazing local weather blog.  Thanks for the blog, Cliff from UW, now I can check back neurotically for your daily snow status. He has us at a 1pm start tomorrow. And, unlike Monday, it will be hitting already cooled ground, allowing it to stick right away. Fab.
  • MIchelle Obama's Fri appearance at the Tacoma Dome got rescheduled for 3/24.  Relief.  No snowstorm was keeping me from her. She had to stop us.
  • My doctor's appt for Monday called to reschedule.  MONDAY (it's Thursday?!) 
  • Sent an email to all of my neighbors (hello Map Your Neighborhood Program, you've done this right?) so we have each other's current contact info handy. Reminded them of this webpage , and no less important, who has the most stocked wine cellars.  We need to check in on our elderly, find our shovels, charge our chargers, locate batteries/flashlights/warm blankets/clothes, and have non-perishable snacks and water on the ready.
  • Costco was a complete zoo. I bought a snow brush for my car just because everyone else was and it felt like a good kind of peer pressure. Every checkout line was backed up to the book section of the store, about 12 carts deep.  I had lots of new friends by the time I got to the register. And I was proud of all your selections, Kirkland shoppers!  I noticed fresh fish, Pellegrino, batteries and some wines bins were starting to run low ('The Pessimist' is decent at $16/bottle btw).  Aren't we fancy emergency planners!?
  • Mom calls. Worried about me driving to OR Sat for daughter's gymnastics meet.  And why don't we have a generator again? 
  • My kids were thrilled to text me and let me know that school is letting out 2 hours early on Friday. 
  • Stopped in O'Reilly Auto Parts and bought the last 2 jugs of windshield washer fluid (the kind that doesn't freeze)- feeling pretty prepared now.
  • Daughter's King Co Gymnastics meet gets canceled for Sat. She's sad.  I'm more sad that the OR one is still on.
  • Remembered to put my new snow brush/scraper and emergency backpack kit in my trunk right next to my hotties and space blankets. BAM!! That felt good.
  • "Hi Mom.  Yes, I heard Michelle Obama got rescheduled."  Then she reviews 14 more scenarios and steps she's taken that she learned in her CERT training. 
  • I promised the Kirkland Wine Walk folks that I would let you know they have decided to RESCHEDULE this Friday's Wine Walk event until April 26th with a 'Celebrating Spring' theme (doesn't that sound lovely about now?). There may or may not have been a little banter about how growing up in NJ, and he in Michigan, this type of snow hype was quite entertaining.
  • Met a friend at Vovina for Happy Hour (those tator tots were off the hook) that is supposed to get on a plane at 3pm tomorrow, freely spooning out empathy in anticipation of her crappy day at Sea-Tac.
  • It took my husband 2 hours to get home from Downtown Bellevue. So nice of him to help w/kids carpools anyway!
  • No call from panicked mom in a few hrs, is she ok?  Too risky to check in.  I'll write a blog post and call her tmrw.
  • I have begun to embrace the inevitable. This storm, and then the next one that is its encore on Mon/Tues, is coming whether I like it or not. The only way to manage being Type A and confined to your house for who-knows-how-many days is to make a list.  My list starts with a few snow frolics, books, movies, maybe some baking or painting nails w/kids.....but then we downshift into full-on closet cleaning, file organizing, tax document digging, document writing, researching, and maybe even a little baseboard cleaning (hi kids!).

I want you all to stay warm and safe out there.  This doesn't happen often so get yourself ready, hunker down, and make your list. ~j

The Queen of the KDA Steps Down

Special thanks to Barbie and all she has done for our community!

If you don't already know this lady, she is kind of a rock star for all things Kirkland.  After five years as the Executive Director of the Kirkland Downtown Association, Barbie Collins Young has stepped down to pursue other interests.  The Kirkland Downtown Association works with the community and businesses on events such as the Kirkland Wednesday Market, Wine Walks, Art Walk, Celebrate Kirkland, Summer Concert Series, Classic Car Show, Winterfest, and Santa’s Mailbox.  I have a feeling we haven't seen the last of her!  The KDA will be led by Board President, Jim Kress, from BECU and Tessa Hansen has accepted the role of a full-time events manager.  

I think in honor of Barbie we should all book our ubers and plan to attend the next Kirkland Wine Walk on Feb 8th from 6-9pm.  Details and tickets for purchase available here.  It could even be a Happy almost Valentine's Day outing! (that's your reminder, nudge nudge..) ~j