October and November Events In And Around Green Lake

September 30, 2017 6:51am


Theater For Young Children: Juan at Maria (Juan and Maria in Tagalog) and Scaredy Squirrel
Oct. 6 at 11:15 a.m.
Juan and Maria is a Filipino folk tale similar to Hansel and Gretel. Like all Theater For Young Children performances, this one is filled with live acting and music by professional artists. Best for children ages 2-6 and free to the public (but donations gladly accepted of $10/family).
Approx. 50 min. in length
Green Lake Community Center

Glow In the Park: Seattle Humane’s Walk For The Animals
Oct. 7 5:30-9:30 p.m.
Join nearly 1,000 Seattle area pet lovers and their dogs as they walk around Green Lake in glowing gear. The fundraiser helps cats, dogs and animals at Seattle Humane. Thinking about adopting a pet? You’ll find some ready-for-a-home pals here too. Food trucks will be on hand to make sure everyone is well fed.
To register, go to the event’s website.
Green Lake Park

Bow Wows and Books
October 15 and 29 (and every other week ongoing)
3-4 p.m.
Every other Sunday Project Canine brings its certified reading dogs to the Green Lake Branch of The Seattle Public Library. What’s a certified reading dog? A dog that will calmly sit and listen while your child reads its favorite book to him/her. Build confident readers and make new friends.
Green Lake Branch Library 7364 E Green Lake Dr N

4.5 K-9 Run/Walk For A Cure
October 15 8 a.m.
This run is for the dogs (and humans). All registration fees donated to Chase Away K9 Cancer
For more information and to sign up go to their website.

Haunted Bounce and Pirate Pool Party
October 27 6 -8 p.m.
Green Lake Community Center and Evans Pool are cohosting a haunted celebration. The dimly lit gym will be adorned with glow in the dark accessories from 6-8 p.m. and complete with two haunted bouncy houses.  From 7 – 8 p.m. Evans Pool will have a pirate themed pool party. Healthy snacks provided. Canned food donation will also be collected to support local food banks. Best for ages 5 to 15.
Green Lake Community Center
7201 East Green Lake Dr N

PCC Pumpkin Decorating Party
Saturday, October 28
9 a.m. to 12 p.m. Greenlake Village
11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Greenlake Aurora PCC
No tricks here, just treats! Kids 12 and younger can decorate their own pumpkin to take home. We’ll provide the pumpkins, craft materials, and a healthy snack.

A Very Corgi Howloween
October 28th at 11:00 a.m.
Love dogs? Love dogs in costume. Okay, mark your calendar for this event as hundreds of costumed corgis walk the lake for this annual event.
5900 West Green Lake Way N, 98103
Meet near the rowing stands where all the corgis will be lining up for photos before they take a (long) lap around the Green Lake loop. This event is hosted by the Corgis R Us meet up group. Go to their site for more info.

Candy Buy Back
November 2-4 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Sick of all that candy? Why not “buy it back?” A local dentist will buy candy $1 for every pound and will be sending it to deployed soldiers as part of Operation Gratitude. Gift bags and prizes will also be offered for all children.
Best Dentistry 9776 Holman RdNW, #110

Volunteer for Green Seattle Day
November 4 from 9 a.m. to noon
Plant a tree on Green Seattle Day — Volunteers can help plant the future forest of our city in parks across Seattle. The goal is to engage more than 1,000 volunteers in 22 parks throughout the City, and in just three hours volunteers will plant thousands of native trees and shrubs. All ages welcome, no experience necessary, and all materials provided. Pick your favorite park from the list and join the Green Seattle Partnership for our biggest party of the year. Please sign up in advance to help us plan a great event. Information at www.greenseattle.org, info@greenseattle.org, and by phone at 206-905-6924.

Green Lake Gobble & Mashed Potato Munch Off 
November 19, 8 a.m.
What’s not to love about a race and a competitive mashed potato eating contest (and yes, thankfully it is in that order). Registration opens at 8 a.m. (with the beer garden opening at 9). The Kid’s dash starts at 9:10 a.m. and the 5k & 10k run and walk starts at 9:30. Register online here. The post race celebration starts at 10 a.m. and the Mashed Potato Munch Off contestant drawing starts at 10:30 with the official munch off at 10:45. Bring cans to donate to the Union Gospel Mission.
5900 W Greenlake Way N


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What To Expect When Going To A Plant-Based Burger Joint

September 29, 2017 6:50am

Photo courtesy of Next Level Burger

“How is that even a thing?” asks a friend, when I tell her I’m going to a new vegan burger joint.

Next Level Burger, or “NLB” as the owners and staff sometimes refer to it, is the nation’s first plant-based burger joint. Their new location in the Roosevelt Square Whole Foods is the first outside of Oregon, where the company got its start.

Matt de Gruyter, CEO and Founder of NLB, who sat down with me for an interview, also generously covered the cost of the sample meal so I could write this article. But rest assured, all opinions are my own, and no one at the company saw this before it was published.

Since opinions are my own, it’s probably a good idea to let you know where I’m coming from. I don’t eat that much meat, but I’m also not vegetarian and definitely not vegan. And I happen to be a dietitian, but I love French fries as much (or maybe more, if we’re being honest) as the next person. So I’ll be commenting on what to expect from the perspective of someone who doesn’t mind eating veggies but is used to burgers with meat.

That’s okay, Matt tells me. He doesn’t want NLB to be known only as a place for vegetarians.

“Next Level Burger isn’t about what you’re not going to get, it’s about what you’re going to get,” he says. “You can take the same expectations (sans the bison burger) that you would take into any awesome burger joint that’s rocking awesome ingredients, and not even have to give a second thought to the fact that all of it’s made out of plants.”

And it looks like a typical burger joint, with very little hint that it’s all plant-based, until you look more closely at the menu or walk up to the counter, where a team member cheerfully greets you with a short orientation for first time visitors.

One hesitation many people have about trying plant-based foods is that it doesn’t taste like the “real thing.” NLB has both meat substitutes and foods that never had any meat to begin with, so there’s something for everyone, no matter how hesitant you are. Their menu includes burgers, hot dogs, chili, fries, salad, and shakes.

Anything that’s normally made with dairy (like cheese or milkshakes) is made with some kind of vegan substitute, which can be quite different if you’re not used to that kind of thing. For example, the shakes come with your choice of coconut or soy soft serve ice cream as a base.

Anything normally containing meat (like sausage, bacon, or hamburgers) is made with tempeh or other vegan ingredients. One example is the “bacon” made of strips of tempeh, a soy product originally from Indonesia.

On the other hand, there are other menu items that are just food that happens to be plant-based. Examples include the house-made black bean and veggie patty featured in the Spicy Bean and MexiCali burgers, and the house-made umami mushroom and quinoa patty in the Signature burger (and several others). (These burgers contain the vegan “cheese” but if you’re not up for trying it, just order your meal without it.)

My friend and I order based on suggestions from Matt and Veronica, the incredibly friendly team member who’s taking orders when we walk in. The order includes:

  • The Signature burger, a house-made umami mushroom and quinoa patty topped with organic sliced avocado, Cheddar or Swiss style cheese and roasted garlic thyme (egg-free) mayo
  • The Sausage Bacon, juicy sausage style patty topped with smoky tempeh bacon, Cheddar or Swiss style cheese, mayo and yellow mustard
  • Crinkle fries, fried in organic oil, and ordered “with style” (meaning they’re covered in toppings. It’s recommend we try the “Special” option with grilled onions, melted Cheddar style cheese and special sauce)
  • One Dark Chocolate PB Cup shake, made with coconut soft serve ice cream

There are several house-made items, which makes the food taste fresh and interesting. In our order, this included the mushroom and quinoa patty, the garlic thyme mayo, and the special sauce, which Veronica tells us is “like Thousand Island, but with an extra kick.”

Burgers at NLB are a little smaller in diameter than some restaurants, about 4 or 5 inches across compared to the 5 or 6 inch buns at some other places, but they’re stacked high with all-organic, fresh veggies, and are big enough to cut in half if you want to share multiple burgers to try more menu options.

If you want to share other things too, the fries with style are large enough to share (or order multiple fry options and share them all), and you can ask for the shakes to be split between two cups.

Speaking of fries, you can also choose whether your fries are baked or fried in organic oil, although being vegan doesn’t mean all the food is what most would consider “healthy”–fried food is still fried food, and calories are still calories. But Matt says that compared to the alternative animal-based products, NLB may serve healthier options.

“You’re not going to feel like you have to take a nap and you’re not going to scold yourself on the way home. You’re not going to be kicking yourself over the amount of cholesterol or saturated fat that you ate, because the good news is that it’s cholesterol-free, and the great news is the amount of saturated fat in one of our burgers is going to be a tiny portion of any other burger that you’re going to find anywhere else.”

Matt’s personal and family health inspired his passion for plant-based food. His wife and business partner, Cierra, switched to a plant-based diet in 2008, and after 2010, when Matt lost his mother and uncle to heart-related conditions, he began moving to a plant-based diet also. It was Cierra (who Matt describes as his “better looking, more intelligent half”) who brought up the idea of NLB and created many of the recipes (such as the Signature burger).

If you happen to see Matt in the restaurant, go say hi. He’s interesting to talk with and extremely passionate about what (and why) he does what he does.

“What I would love for people to take away,” he says, “is that we are all-in on what we do here. This is not a market opportunity that we saw; this is my wife and I taking something that is not just a passion, but a life choice, and wanting to share this with the world.”

“Our ancestors didn’t eat to just take naps. It was fuel for the fire of living and surviving, and the irony in 21st-century America, in particular, is that we eat to just overwhelm our bodies into a coma on the couch so we can watch Netflix for four hours while we come back to life.”

It’s also not just about the food, but the planet. Matt tells us that eating a plant-based meal “is one of the best things that anybody can do to stick it to what we have thus far been doing to this planet over the last couple hundred years. The sustainability of a plant-based diet is unquestionable. You can either skip a shower this week or you can come in and eat a plant-based meal.”

NLB’s commitment to sustainability also includes compostable packaging and reclaimed wood signs for the order numbers.

“It’s an awesome thing to be part of and it’s really going after some of the most important things that we can go after: personal health for the people on this planet, and the planet that we all share,” Matt says. “That’s what we want people to take away from this: this is about all of us, not just about a few of us. Our goal is inclusivity and the menu that we’ve built, I think, reflects that.”

“Our premise is clean fuel for life–whether it’s going to climb a mountain, a yoga class, or chasing the kids around,” he says. “It’s awesome healthy food that happens to be made out of plants.”

So, ultimately, would I recommend this to a friend? I think it’s worth a visit (or two) to try it out and see whether you can find something you like. This place is a great find for vegans and vegetarians because of the variety, and good for anyone who wants to eat more plant-based foods or wants to feel like they really did something for the environment. If you do go, regardless of your eating preferences, I recommend trying the Signature burger without cheese, a shake of your choice, and some fries.

Next Level Burger is located in the Roosevelt Square Whole Foods (1026 NE 64th St) and is open Monday to Sunday, 11:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m. and is busiest during lunch hours.


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Seattle Greenlaker Store

Did You See The Aurora Last Night?

September 28, 2017 8:32pm

Photo by Dustin Guy

I had the good fortune to see this from work (over Lake Washington) last night and get this photo. Chances are, if anyone was on the south or west side of Green Lake last night looking north around 11 pm, they might have gotten a similar shot.


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Fall In Green Lake

September 25, 2017 7:37am

Photo by Dustin Guy

Welcome fall! This week we will be celebrating all things fall in Green Lake. So stay tuned for photos, videos and events around Green Lake.

Soon the colors will be changing around the lake. As you take photos, please send them our way. They could appear on the blog or Facebook.


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An Amazing Glimpse Into Space From Green Lake

September 13, 2017 1:43pm

Photo by Dustin Guy

Yesterday morning, our own Dustin Guy was able to capture a pretty cool sight – an occultation (which is the passage of one celestial body in front of another). According to Guy, “occultation is similar to an eclipse but on a smaller scale. The star Aldebaran, at a distance of 65 light years, slipped behind the Moon for an hour. This happens a few times a year in the Northern Hemisphere, but it’s not always visible from our location and/or the weather doesn’t cooperate.”

Guy was able to capture this photo from his deck at 445 a.m., just before it disappeared. Aldebaran is the speck to the left of the Moon.


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You Aren’t Imagining It… Green Lake’s Water Level Is Extremely Low

September 12, 2017 6:07am

Photo by Garet Munger

Does Green Lake’s water level seem low? You aren’t imagining it, it really is. We received a tip from Greenlaker Garet Munger who has been monitoring the water level for the past four years. He shared his data and insights with us. 

Green Lake Water Level August 30, 2013 to August 30, 2017

CharlieChester (our mixed cocker and poodle) and I have been making regular, nearly daily visits to Green Lake since moving closer to the lake in 2012.  Most days we make a complete circuit around the lake.  To satisfy my own curiosity, I have been measuring and keeping a record of the water level in Green Lake since August 2013. I measure the level of the water at a fixed point on the dock by the boat rental at the north end of the lake.

As anybody who has visited the lake will have observed, the water level in the lake is currently at a very low level.  By my records, the level today (September 7, 2017) is near the lowest level it has been over the five Septembers for which I have recorded.  The lowest level came on August 28, 2015.  That lowest level was about ½” below today’s level.  In 2015, the water level came up after the 28th with a storm event that produced about 1 ¾” of rain.

This summer has been an unusually almost record setting year for the lack of rain.  It has also been warmer than average.  The last significant storm event for Seattle was June 16.  Precipitation of almost ¾” fell on Green Lake during that storm.  Since then there was 0.03 inches recorded at Green Lake on July 28, and .11 inches of rain on August 31.

Rain fall is recorded at Green Lake by a weather station installed at the Small Craft Center at Green Lake.  Daily results are published and reported here.

The water level in Green Lake has gone down each day over the summer at a rate of about 1/8” per day.  We can expect the water level to continue receding until the first storm event of the fall.  With higher temperatures, the rate of decline has been closer to ¼” per day.

Over the five years for which I have measurements, the lowest level measured at the beginning of September has varied by almost three inches. To a large extent, these annual differences in summer water levels can be accounted for; by the variation in the amounts and pattern of precipitation over the summer, differences in temperatures, and differences in the water level at the beginning of the summer, and by slight differences in outflows from the lake during the summer months.

Thank you Garet for sharing your citizen scientist skills with us! 


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Invest In Youth Seeks Tutor Volunteers

September 11, 2017 5:18am

Photo via Invest In Youth

Looking for a way to give back to your community?

Invest in Youth is a Seattle-based nonprofit organization that provides free tutoring to local elementary students across the city.

If you’re looking for a way to get involved or give back to your community, this could be your opportunity! Invest in Youth is looking for role model tutors to work one-on-one with elementary students at local schools, including Green Lake’s Daniel Bagley Elementary School.

Tutoring begins the second week of October, runs through May and takes place once every week at each school.

Each tutor is matched with the same student for the whole school year, and the pair works together on things like playing math games, reading stories or working on homework, for one hour each week. Educational materials and activities, training and support, and heartfelt appreciation are provided at every session.

For more information or to apply to be a tutor, please contact Erika Chen at echen@investinyouth.org or visit our website: https://www.investinyouth.org/volunteer/

Can’t commit to the full school year? Become a substitute tutor or share this with your friends who might be interested.


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Northwest Girlchoir Rehearsals Start This Month

September 7, 2017 6:22am

Photo via Northwest Girchoir

For girls and young women who love to sing, Northwest Girlchoir has openings for new singers entering grades 1-12 to join in the fun this fall. Learn musicianship, vocal technique, and performance skills, all while building lasting friendships in a supportive community.

During the span of four decades, Northwest Girlchoir has empowered and inspired thousands of girls and young women in our region to lift their voices in chorus with others. Choristers perform for thousands of audience members at concerts held across the greater Puget Sound Region and on tours nationally and internationally.

Grades 1-2: Easy online registration is now open for girls entering grades 1-2 to join Prep Choir! Enrollment for Prep Choir is open online until Friday, September 22. Members learn music in a fun and nurturing environment as they prepare for exciting mainstage concerts. Sign up online at www.northwestgirlchoir.org/prepchoir

Grades 3-12: Fill out the Audition Request form by Monday, September 4 to join one of Northwest Girlchoir’s five progressive-level choirs this season! Auditioned choir members enjoy performing at mainstage concerts, in the community and at special events, and even on tours. Learn more at www.northwestgirlchoir.org/choirprograms

Scholarship: Financial aid is available for every choir level and we encourage families to apply.

Contact info@northwestgirlchoir.org for more information or call the office at (206) 527-2900.


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