News blog for Seattle's Maple Leaf neighborhood

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News about Mr. Grumbles, another cat – and crime

August 26th, 2014 by Mike

News from around the neighborhood in the past few days:

Mr. Grumbles (Do you know this cat hanging on 12th N.E.), the neighborhood cat who walks by himself and visits many homes, apparently has quite a few fans.

He may soon have his own Facebook page, his owner speculates. He was originally found living behind a dumpster, she says.

We may actually start a Facebook page (ridiculous) for him, to explain his story and advise people to not feed him/ let him inside, as he loves variety and free choice of where he stays… he just doesn’t know any better.

Meanwhile, Hallie emails: “I am part of the neighborhood … I have a cat that needs a home and I was hoping that you might be able to help.”

Rio is a male tabby with a bull’s eye design on his sides. He’s an outdoor cat and about 9 years old. Email Hallie at

Finally, since our last crime report in mid-July, it appears there have been right at 17 burglaries in Maple Leaf, according to the police crime map.

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Beware Green Lake algae scum!

August 22nd, 2014 by Mike

Seattle Parks warns toxic algae has been found in accumulated scum along the shores of Green Lake.
The lake is not  closed and remains open for most activities.
However, people and pets should not wade or play in the lake with the scum.
Dog owners should take special care not to let animals drink from those areas.
If your dog does romp in the scum, rinse well, Parks says.

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The Maple Bar (nee Maple Leaf Grill) is open!

August 18th, 2014 by Mike

The Maple Bar, officially to open Aug. 23, actually had a “soft” opening this weekend.

The bar and restaurant, at 8929 Roosevelt Way N.E. in the space where the Maple Leaf Grill closed, will be open daily from 5 p.m to midnight.

The soft opening, to train staffers and fine-tune equipment (how’s the beer working now?) and offerings, means an initial reduced-price menu. (See below)

Without advance notice or advertising, the bar still packed in 100 customers Saturday night, staff said.

Welcome to Maple Leaf!

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Report of brown tap water near light rail construction

August 17th, 2014 by Mike

Laura emails:

We live near First Avenue Northeast and Northeast 85th Street and are wondering if anyone else is experiencing tan(ish) water coming out of their taps this morning?

I’m assuming it has something to do with the link expansion construction, but it would be great to know if it’s just us or seems to be neighborhood wide.

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Do you know this cat (hanging on 12th NE)?

August 17th, 2014 by Mike

Neighbors along 12th Avenue Northeast report this long-haired gray cat has been entering their houses and sleeping in their yards for the past couple of weeks.

The cat is fluffy, friendly and appears well-fed but they’re worried that it may be lost because it isn’t known to the immediate neighbors.

It is wearing a bell but doesn’t have a tag. The cat has been seen on 12th Ave. between Northeast 89th and 91st streets.

Please comment here if you know this kitty and we’ll pass it along.

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This weekend last chance to play piano at the park

August 15th, 2014 by Mike

After Sunday, the piano goes away.

From Seattle Parks:

Pianos in the Parks wraps up on Sunday, August 17!

The campaign will culminate in two great things: winning auction bidders will get to add a one-of-a-kind pianos to their homes and:

A local musician who submitted a performance video entry on the Pianos in the Parks Facebook page will be selected to perform at Concerts at the Mural, presented by KEXP and Seattle Center on August 22. To be eligible for either, the local community needs to get in their auction bids and contest entries now!

Proceeds from the piano sale benefit nonprofit partners: Seattle Parks and Recreation, King County Parks, Seattle Symphony, KEXP and Gage Academy of Art.

For more information visit the Pianos in the Parks website.

For videos of our piano, go to the Friends for a Greater Maple Leaf Park Facebook page.

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Pop-up-market returns to the Blue Saucer on Sunday

August 15th, 2014 by Mike

Depending on how you count, this Sunday will bring the third annual Pop-Up-Market in the parking lot of Blue Saucer.

That’s what owner Billie Bryan calls it.

But our (ahem) records show the coffee shop, at 9127 Roosevelt Way N.E., has been holding similar sales in its parking lot at least since 2010. (“Cause that’s how far back our records go.)

Billie emails:

This year we’re hosting 30 vendors with fine art photography, lawn and garden art, jewelry, hand-stitched items (cards to banners!) face painting, leather works, soaps, organic nut butters, canoli and gourmet popcorn, also fused glass and re-purposed wood products and small furniture items just to name a few!

All vendors are Local and MANY from the Maple Leaf neighborhood. Come support your local creative people!!!

Hours are 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

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Any more upcoming garage/yard sales?

August 14th, 2014 by Mike

We’ve just added this announcement, from Amy, to our “Garage sales here or near” page:

40 Family Garage Sale

Saturday August 16th 8:30-4 p.m.

Not to be missed! kids toys, housewares, strollers, baby equipment, many antiques and collectibles, computer desk, tables, IKEA bunk bed, books, something for everyone!

1221 NE 90th St., Seattle – Maple Leaf Neighborhood.

ALL PROCEEDS BENEFIT a cappella Joy Chorus -

www.! Today only – for more information, call 206-778-5572

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A way to help family of fallen 2-year-old

August 14th, 2014 by Mike

Since the tragic death of a 2-year-old girl at Maple Leaf’s women’s shelter, several readers have asked here or on our Facebook page if there will be a fundraiser for the girl’s mother.

Today we heard back from Carol Brown at ADWAS – Abused Deaf Women’s Advocacy Services – which runs the shelter.

What a kind offer and amazing community.

Here’s what we came up with:

If people would like to contribute to the family, people may make their checks out to ADWAS with a note on the memo line –

1) “FBO (For Benefit Of) toddler” if you would like it to go to the family or;

2) In the memo section “ADWAS” for the organization in general.

That way, either option, people can receive a tax deduction for their donation.

What a kind offer and amazing community.

I have spoken with a neighbor who has been in email contact with some folks – Jenny Russell is her name. I am not sure if she is doing something simultaneously.

Here’s what we came up with:

If people would like to contribute to the family, people may make their checks out to ADWAS with a note on the memo line –

1) “FBO (For Benefit of) toddler” if you would like it to go to the family or;

2) In the memo section “ADWAS” for the organization in general.

That way, either option, people can receive a tax deduction for their donation.

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Tragedy overnight as 2-year-old dies on N.E. 88th

August 13th, 2014 by Mike

Update 10:30 a.m.

ADWAS has released a statement:

What happened here was a tragic accident. Our hearts, thoughts, and prayers are with the family that lost such an amazing little girl. We are doing everything we can to support the residents and staff that are also affected by this tragedy as well. We are asking that you please respect the family’s privacy at this time.


A 2-year-old girl died about 7:20 p.m. after falling from a third-story window at Northeast 88th Street and Roosevelt Way Northeast.

From Seattle Police:

Around 7:30 p.m. police and medics responded to the 800 block of NE 88th St for the injured baby girl. The child fell from the window to the ground below.

Medics immediately began lifesaving efforts and transported the child to Harborview Medical Center, where she died.


The apartment building is run by Abused Deaf Women’s Advocacy Services, and neighbors said the child’s mother is hearing impaired.

Neighbors in the building were shocked to learn of the accident.

“This little girl was amazing,” one neighbor said. “She was beautiful. This nice laugh, beautiful smile. I miss her so much.”

Police say the fall was accidental and no charges will be filed.

The tragedy came at the end of a record-breaking heat spell. As our news partner The Seattle Times reported in a 2008 story: “Every year, as the weather warms and parents open their windows, dozens of young children … are rushed to local hospitals after suffering falls from windows and balconies.”

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HOT! (again) as Maple Leaf hits 94 degrees

August 11th, 2014 by Mike

Sunday night’s supermoon from Maple Leaf Reservoir Park.

It’s hot – the hottest day of the year in Maple Leaf by one degree.

It hit 94 at Maple Leaf Life South around 4 p.m., breaking the previous record here for 2014 set on July 1.

The daily record at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport was broken, too, according to the National Weather Service’s Seattle office: “Sea-Tac Airport reached 96 today, breaking the old record of 95 for this date back in 1977.”

Also, from the weather service’s Facebook page:

The heat is forecast to snap on Tuesday, with possible thunderstorms, a high of 82 degrees and an overnight low (important for cooling down the inside of your home) of 58 degrees.

Then, temperatures in the 70s, with a chance of rain through Thursday.

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Eleven things about urban bees and your garden

August 9th, 2014 by Mike

By Caroline Young Ullmann

Maple Leaf Community Garden Plot No. 4

The Urban Pollination Project gave a workshop on bees this week at the Maple Leaf Community Garden.

In the photo, Susan Waters is showing a group of nine pea patch gardeners how to identify bees, wasps and flies. (See below.)

Waters, a co-founder of the pollination project, holds a PhD from the University of Washington.

Here’s some of what the class learned:

1) Generally speaking, wasps are shiny and smooth and bees are fuzzy.

2) Bee hairs are branched to collect pollen.

3) Male wasps and bees don’t sting.

4) Wasps don’t pollinate but they’re good in the garden because they eat insects like aphids off our plants.

5) Bumble bees in North America are rapidly declining and that’s bad because they pollinate a lot of crops.

6) Nearly all tomato plants in Seattle are pollinated by bumble bees because they are hefty enough to vibrate the flowers.

7) About 15-20 years ago, our most common bumble was the Western bumble bee (the one with the white butt) but it has virtually disappeared and no one knows why. Now the yellow-faced bumble bee is super-common.

8)  Honey bees can range 5 miles or so to forage; there isn’t data on urban bumble bees but the suspicion is they travel only one-quarter of a mile.

9) If honey bees decide they don’t like their queen, they’ll surround her and vibrate so rapidly they fry her to death.

10) We have a weird territorial bee (an invasive called the European wool carder) that will decide it “owns” a flowering plant and body slam other bees that come too close.

11) Tips to attract bees to your garden: Don’t use pesticides; leave piles of twigs on the ground for bumbles to nest beneath; plant a sequence of flowers throughout the growing season.

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Live north of 85th? Metro Transit is offering free ORCA card

August 7th, 2014 by Mike

This post courtesy of our sister site PhinneyWood.

Metro Transit’s new In Motion program for North Seattle and Shoreline aims to encourage people to use transit, bicycle, walk or carpool.

So it’s offering a free ORCA card good for two weeks of unlimited travel to anyone who pledges to change some of their trips from driving alone. This round of the program is for anyone who lives or works in north Seattle north of  Northeast 85th Street, or in Shoreline.

Just register online and record your weekly progress. (Must be at least 16 years old and have at least one car in your household to participate.) The program runs for 12 weeks.

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A musical Night Out in Maple Leaf

August 5th, 2014 by Mike

Music from improv jazz at the Maple Leaf Reservoir Park…

…to raucous covers of bands of yore (Go-Go’s. Yes!), at this Night Out party on Northeast 88th Street.

Seattle’s 30th Annual Night Out Against Crime is over.

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Silver Platters, SAS Shoes, others to leave Northgate Station for light rail

August 4th, 2014 by Mike

Sound Transit got back to us today, confirming it will acquire Northgate Station -  the strip mall that houses Silver Platters, SAS Shoes and several other stores.

The site will instead become a part of the link between the Maple Leaf Portal and the Northgate Light Rail station.

“As the station and guideway construction plans moved past 90% it became apparent that we would not be able to maintain reasonable access for the businesses for at least two years while we build the guideway through the area,” emails Bruce Gray, public information officer for Sound Transit.

“Four of the large columns supporting the guideway will be on the property and as the designs progressed, it became clear that we can’t put them in while maintaining access to the tenants.”

The mall is immediately south of the Northgate Transit Center, and just east of First Avenue Northeast and Interstate 5.

Gray said that by now all the businesses in the mall should have been contacted.

Sound Transit will pay for all moving expenses and up to $50K in costs associated with reestablishing their businesses at a new location. Our people will also help the businesses find suitable new locations and work closely with them throughout the process.

In other light rail news, Sound Transit emailed on Thursday:

The first of two tunnel boring machines that will build the Northgate Link tunnels between the University of Washington Station and Northgate Station is having a good start. Today it will have travelled 500 feet since crews began mining south from the Maple Leaf Portal near NE 94th Street in early July. Crews expect the first TBM to reach Roosevelt Station in early 2015.

The light rail line here is set to begin operating in 2021.

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