West Seattle businesses: Thunder Road Guitars moving to Junction

May 6, 2015 at 11:11 am | In West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news | 23 Comments

(Photo courtesy Thunder Road Guitars: L-R, TRG manager Dan Miles, Bass Shop owner Chad Beeler, TRG owner Frank Gross, guitar fixer Sam Tyner)
Back in February, we published a note from Thunder Road Guitars owner Frank Gross, asking for help finding a bigger space for the shop. He found it – and is officially announcing the impending move, as well as a new partnership:

We are absolutely thrilled to announce that we will be moving to the heart of the West Seattle Junction this summer, taking over the 4736 California Ave space previously occupied by The Sneakery. As many of you know we have been busting at the seams in our current location for some time now and given the size of this new location it will triple our current square footage. What does this mean? More of what we do! More fine vintage and used guitars and amplifiers. More pedals from the innovative brands we carry, and more accessories. We will also be expanding to offer guitars lessons from some great local teachers.

On top of moving we are also thrilled to announce a partnership with fellow West Seattlite Chad Beeler of The Bass Shop and Bass EFX. Chad has worked in the musical instrument field for over 25 years and co-owned / co-founded Bass Northwest in Pioneer Square, one of the national leaders in bass guitars and amplifiers. Chad will be showcasing his exclusive inventory in Thunder Road Guitars and in turn will significantly bulk up the bass selection in the store. Our collective goal is to be a one stop shop for guitar and bass enthusiasts throughout the region.

The 4736 California location has a bit of sentimental value to me. When I was a kid, it was a print shop named Liberty Bell Printing. I have memories of my dad taking me there when I was a young teenager to print artwork for my first band’s CD. After all these years, music is taking me back to that same spot. We are so excited to be part of the West Seattle community and can’t wait to open our new location in the Junction.

Expect to see us open the end of June!

Thunder Road Guitars was an online-only business until two and a half years ago, when they opening the storefront they’ll be leaving at 3916 California SW. The Sneakery closed its Junction shop last month and consolidated back into its original location in Ballard.

BIZNOTES: Three business updates at 35th/Roxbury

May 3, 2015 at 5:20 pm | In Health, West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news | 24 Comments

3 notes from the northwest side of 35th/Roxbury:

PEOPLE’S CHOICE UPDATE: More than two months ago, we told you about DPD documents indicating the People’s Choice Marketplace medical-marijuana access point, currently in the 9400 block of Delridge, was planning to open at 9451 35th SW. They didn’t answer our inquiries about it, but now a big banner’s up. By the way, for those who asked about the legalities of medical-marijuana storefronts (this is right across the street from Northwest Patient Resource Center on the northeast corner of 35th and Roxbury) near schools – with the charter school planned at the southwest corner – we talked to the City Attorney’s Office a while back and they basically told us that due to the mostly unregulated nature of dispensaries, this isn’t necessarily a conflict. But that was before a new law passed the State Legislature this year, so it’s all yet to be worked out, apparently.

CANNA HEALTH GONE: Immediately north of this spot, the medical-marijuana-authorization provider Canna Health is gone. But that freestanding building isn’t empty …

NEPENTHE MASSAGE’S NEW LOCATION: Nepenthe Massage, which used to be between The Junction and Morgan Junction, is now open in the former CH spot (9447 35th SW), according to a sign out front as well as its website.

BIZNOTE: Straight Blast Gym expands kids’ programs, adds camp

May 2, 2015 at 2:33 pm | In Health, West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news | Comments Off

(Photos courtesy Straight Blast Gym)
Still looking for summer camp, and/or a new place for your kid(s) to spend time before/after school? New offerings at Straight Blast Gym (WSB sponsor), co-proprietor Sonia Sillan tells us:

Straight Blast Gym offers kids’ martial arts focusing on life skills and youth development. We have recently expanded our schedule, upgraded our Before and After School Program, AND have added a brand-new Summer Camp for 2015. We are invested in the success of your child in the gym and on the mats, but also in life as well.

SBG is currently offering free consultations, which include a free private lesson for your kid(s), and a discount for enrolling in the summer camp or before/after-school program by the end of this month. You can call or e-mail with questions – 206.420.1834 or welcome@sbgseattle.com

BIZNOTE: Tony’s Market in Westwood will open this Friday

April 27, 2015 at 1:14 pm | In West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news, Westwood | 6 Comments

We finally have an answer to the question we’ve been asked most often these past several weeks: “When is the Tony’s Market produce stand at 35th and Barton opening for the season?” Since photographing the new tent almost three weeks ago, we’ve gone by every day, but no one’s been there. We finally spotted proprietor Joey Genzale outside the stand while driving by about an hour ago, so we changed course and stopped to ask him what’s up. First, the opening date: This Friday, May 1st. Second, why the delay? In addition to putting up the new tent, the parking lot needed some work. So if you’re a Tony’s fan, now you know.

Congrats! International olive-oil award for West Seattle’s 11 Olives

April 26, 2015 at 5:45 pm | In West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news | 8 Comments

You probably know West Seattle has a thriving wine and beer scene. Beverages are not all you’ll find bottled here. West Seattle also is home to olive-oil-maker Rick Martin‘s company 11 Olives – whose extra-virgin-olive-oil blend “Longevity” was a gold-medal honoree at the recent New York International Olive Oil Competition, which had more than 600 entries from more than 20 countries. “Longevity” is also a California Olive Oil Council medal-winner. Martin explains the process:

I travel to California each year for the olive harvest and source single varietal olive oil directly from the finest organic and sustainable olive growers in California. I begin crafting my blends from those olive oils in early spring here in west Seattle at a free-standing facility after the olive oil has settled and ready for blending. Creating a premium extra virgin olive oil is a tedious and challenging task while also being a labor of love that we all strive to perfect each and every year. There’s no resting on laurels in our field as olive oil producers face constant changing conditions and work tirelessly to provide the freshest and most flavorful olive oil with each new season.

P.S. Martin wanted to publicly thank West Seattle Produce owner Bruce McPherson: “It was through his kindness and willingness to offer us a chance to introduce our olive oils at his produce stand in April of 2011 that we have been able to grow.” That’s where you can buy 11 Olives’ olive oil.

Glow [natural aesthetics] Medispa: New business, new WSB sponsor

April 24, 2015 at 2:39 pm | In Health, West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news | 4 Comments

We’re welcoming a brand-new West Seattle business as a new WSB sponsor today. Glow [natural aesthetics] Medispa invites you to its upcoming grand opening!

Glow [natural aesthetics] Medispa and Katherine Dee, MD, are proud to announce the grand opening of West Seattle’s first physician-run medical spa. We provide proven professional medical treatments, non-surgical procedures, and clinical skin-care products to optimize your natural glow. Dr. Dee works with each patient to design a personalized skin plan to enhance your natural beauty, preserve healthy skin and prevent premature aging.

Kate attended Yale for college and medical school, and training at UW and UCSF. She spent the past 16 years as a breast-cancer specialist, receiving Top Doc honors each year since 2011. Kate found her way to aesthetic medicine as a result of 2 intersecting passions: Science and beauty. In her 40s, she found her skin had finally caught up to her age. Active all her life and wanting to stay looking and feeling young, Kate began a dedicated education in aesthetic medicine. Armed with the skills and the knowledge, she decided to help others use the science for themselves. A board-certified physician, she is a member of the GSBA and the American Academy of Aesthetic Medicine. Kate and her family have been a part of the West Seattle community for 15 years; she has long desired to practice in the area and is thrilled to be working in and with her community.

What Glow [natural aesthetics] Medispa hears most from our patients is that they want to “age gracefully.” They don’t want to look like they’ve had anything done, but they don’t want to look old! Our clients look refreshed, rested and rejuvenated, as if they have just returned from a relaxing vacation. We can successfully treat fine lines and wrinkles, sagginess, sun damage and pigment problems, spider veins and cherry angiomas, and skin tags. We do this with a range of tools: the right skin-care regimen, botulinum toxin treatment, dermal fillers, microdermabrasion, peels, radiofrequency treatment, microneedling, and PRP (Platelet-Rich Plasma) – this popular treatment has natural powerful growth factors that stimulate skin cells. Consultations are free!

Please join us for our big open house and to meet Kate (Dr. Dee) in person – there will be refreshments and opportunities to win raffle prizes! Saturday, May 2, 4-7 pm – 5400 California Ave SW.

We thank Glow [natural aesthetics] Medispa for sponsoring independent, community-collaborative neighborhood news via WSB; find our current sponsor team listed in directory format here, and find info on joining the team by going here.

HAPPENING NOW: Record Store Day 2015 rocks on into the night at Easy Street

April 18, 2015 at 6:16 pm | In West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news, WS culture/arts | Comments Off

The biggest day of the year at Easy Street Records in The Junction started around sunrise, and it’s not over yet. It’s Record Store Day around the world, and that means specials and surprises at Easy Street, which is staying open well into the night for the occasion. Part of the fun – guest DJ’s, including one of West Seattle’s resident rock stars:

Chris Ballew of The Presidents of the United States of America and Caspar Babypants fame was the guest DJ at mid-afternoon. If you drop by between now and 8 pm, Troy Nelson of The Young Evils and KEXP is scheduled to be DJ’ing, followed by Kevin Cole (also of KEXP) until about 9. Then at 10 pm – a benefit for KEXP as announced on FridayThe Sonics, live (maybe you recognized them in the photo behind Chris B, above?). Online tickets have sold out, according to the KEXP website, which suggests calling ESR to see if there’s room. (Surprise guests are promised; ESR’s Facebook page says Mark Pickerel will be among them.)

HAPPENING NOW: Tax-Free Day deals in The Junction

April 18, 2015 at 2:23 pm | In West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news | 1 Comment

Ready to take a break from the yard, the beach, the dog park, wherever, and go shopping? As mentioned earlier, 30 West Seattle Junction stores are part of “Tax-Free Day” – basically an almost-10-percent discount so that they’re in effect picking up the sales tax. It’s become a tradition over the years, to boost shoppers’ spirits right around federal-tax-deadline time. Above, that’s Mary Ehlert at the AAA storefront on the interior east side of Jefferson Square – it’s a retail shop as well as a place to buy insurance and book travel (among other things). We also peeked in on Curious Kidstuff (4740 California SW), The Junction’s local independent toy shop – with, as you can see in our photo, a festive selection of gift wrap:

(Both aforementioned stores are WSB sponsors.) Today’s full list of participants is here – get out and explore what’s in store in “downtown West Seattle”!

West Seattle biznote: Congratulations! Fleurt turns 5 years old

April 18, 2015 at 12:31 pm | In West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news | 2 Comments

(Photos courtesy Fleurt)
If you’re going to The Junction for Tax-Free Day, stop by Fleurt (4536 California SW) and wish Sam Crowley and daughter Keonii (who runs both this shop and the expansion branch in Pioneer Square) a happy 5th anniversary! The party started yesterday, as Fleurt opened in West Seattle on April 17, 2010 (you might recall its first two years were on the NW corner of California/Oregon, where Funky Jane’s is now). Sam writes:

We reflect back on 5 wonderful years in our West Seattle community we call home. Fleurt has enjoyed 5 years of growth offering daily flower deliveries throughout Seattle, special events, weddings, and 2 gift shops filled with goodies ranging from candles to custom terrariums. … We want to thank everyone who are “Fleurt Fans” and we look forward to the years ahead.

During the five years, Fleurt has been featured on the cover of, and inside, numerous magazines, including winning two “best of” votes via Seattle magazine. Sam says they pride themselves on using local, sustainable flowers – this was created for a delivery yesterday and most of the flowers were grown in her West Seattle garden!

Stop in for snacks during today’s Tax-Free Day sale (and birthday celebration) and also note that Fleurt is again celebrating Earth Day (next Wednesday, April 22nd) by inviting you to drop off unwanted vases, pots, or jars – “We will repurpose at Fleurt or pass along to the West Seattle Senior Center. With each dropoff we hand over a free mini-plant.”

Record Store Day in West Seattle at Easy Street: The Sonics, live!

April 17, 2015 at 2:26 pm | In West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news | 5 Comments

(WSB photo, March 31)
Less than three weeks after their signing appearance at Easy Street Records in The Junction (WSB coverage here) … The Sonics will be back tomorrow night for a performance during Record Store Day. Just announced:

THE SONICS (& Guests) Live At Easy Street On Record Store Day 2015!

We’re thrilled to welcome Northwest Rock Legends The Sonics to Easy Street for a very special Record Store Day live performance at 10 pm! Our heroes will be joined by an amazing array of special guests personally invited by the band throughout the night – and believe us when we say you will NOT be disappointed!! The Sonics performance is a ticketed event with proceeds going to KEXP’s New Home Campaign. A limited number of tickets, priced at $100, are on sale RIGHT NOW at Easy Street. Another small allotment of tickets will be on sale from KEXP.org starting at 3 pm today. Check their home page for link at that time.

Limit of two tickets per person, CASH ONLY.

PLEASE NOTE: EASY STREET WILL NOT BE SELLING TICKETS TO THIS EVENT ON RECORD STORE DAY. Remaining tickets still available on Record Store Day must be purchased through KEXP.org. Ticket buyers will also receive this super-sweet event lithograph by Independence Printage, as well as a retro-style ticket for the event!

That’s not the only thing Easy Street has in store for Record Store Day … it’s opening at 7 am, staying open well into the night, and featuring guest DJs including Chris Ballewread the updates on the ESR website.

VIDEO: West Seattle Trader Joe’s national spotlight, sort of

April 12, 2015 at 9:22 am | In West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news | 15 Comments

Thanks to Scott for sending the link after noticing the West Seattle Trader Joe’s featured on today’s CBS Sunday Morning national newscast. Actually, it’s not about the store so much as one particular shopper – we’ve heard of him before, but had no idea his shopping took him this far south of the border. (For the record, the distance from his store in B.C. to TJ’s in WS is 147 miles.)

BIZ ANNIVERSARIES: West Seattle Cellars celebrates 20th; Wyatt’s Jewelers has open house, sale for 10th

April 10, 2015 at 1:32 pm | In West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news | 1 Comment

Two momentous West Seattle business anniversaries to note:

20 YEARS FOR WEST SEATTLE CELLARS: Last night during the West Seattle Art Walk, we stopped by West Seattle Cellars (6026 California SW) after hearing the shop is marking its 20th anniversary. Here’s how proprietors Jan Martindale and Tom DiStefano (above) announced it in the WSC newsletter:

20 years ago this month, Matt Mabus founded the shop, which at that time was housed in the little building next door. Some of you may remember that space, part of which is now our back room/office. In 2000 we partnered with Bear Silverstein to buy the shop, and in 2005 we moved into our bigger, airier new digs. And after 20 years (now sadly minus the Bear) we’re still going strong, thanks to all of our wonderful customers who continue to shop local!

WSC has also launched its annual West Seattle Helpline fundraiser, hoping to raise $1,000 for WSH by its Taste of West Seattle event on May 21st:

They’re donating 10 percent of the sales made during their regular (free) Thursday night tastings until then. And while at the shop, you can just make an outright donation to Helpline.

TEN YEARS FOR WYATT’S JEWELERS: Family-owned Wyatt’s Jewelers (longtime WSB sponsor) in Westwood Village is celebrating its 10th anniversary with an open house today until 6 pm and again tomorrow (Saturday), 10 am-6 pm – “giveaways, refreshments, store specials, more.” It’s also the only storewide sale of the year, “everything 10 percent to 60 percent off.”

Arguelles Therapeutic Massage: Welcome, new WSB sponsor

April 6, 2015 at 3:15 pm | In Health, West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news | Comments Off

Today we’re welcoming Arguelles Therapeutic Massage as a new WSB sponsor. New local sponsors get the opportunity to share information about their business:

Jon Arguelles, LMP, says, “I take time and care to find out what each clients’ needs and wants are; where their trouble spots are, if they have any injuries, if they need more time spent on their neck and shoulders, lower back or feet. It’s so important to listen to what my clients are looking for, to really understand, and to deliver that to them. It makes the difference between a good massage and an OMG-what-a-good massage!”

What does he hear from Arguelles Therapeutic Massage clients most often? “Clients tell me, ‘Oh, I fell asleep there for awhile,’ that they feel, ‘so much looser,’ and, ‘You figured out my spots and got right to them’.”

Arguelles Therapeutic Massage (a member of the American Massage Therapy Association) is at 4843 California SW, on the south edge of The Junction. You can book your appointment online – just go here. Or, call 425-785-9192.

We thank Arguelles Therapeutic Massage for sponsoring independent, community-collaborative neighborhood news via WSB; find our current sponsor team listed in directory format here, and find info on joining the team by going here.

BIZNOTES: Junction Tax-Free Day set; Tony’s Market soon; CSA at The General Store – Seattle?

April 4, 2015 at 10:07 pm | In West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news | 3 Comments

Three West Seattle biznotes tonight:

JUNCTION TAX-FREE DAY: Two weeks from today, the West Seattle Junction Association confirms, the day of sales dubbed Tax-Free Day will be back. That’s Saturday, April 18th, first Saturday after the federal filing deadline. Of course it’s not really tax-free – but participating merchants (see the list here – including WSB sponsors AAA West Seattle, Click! Design That Fits, Curious Kidstuff, Emerald Water Anglers, Hotwire Online Coffeehouse, VAIN, and Wallflower Custom Framing) will be offering you a discount by covering the sales-tax cost.

TONY’S MARKET: Worried fans of the seasonal produce store Tony’s Market at 35th and Barton have been messaging us with concerns that it’s already April and Tony’s hasn’t opened for the season yet. We’ve seen activity at the site off and on but hadn’t managed to catch up with anyone for formal comment yet – however, we’ve learned that he’s definitely gearing up to open for the season, possibly as soon as next week.

SPEAKING OF PRODUCE – CSA, ANYONE? Claire at The General Store – Seattle (WSB sponsor) wonders if you are interested in signing up for a CSA dropoff at her store (3400 Harbor SW). CSA stands for Community-Supported Agriculture, and Claire’s been working with Skylight Farms, which she says “showcases more than 100 varieties of produce” and has egg shares available too; the program runs for 20 weeks, June through October, with members having the option of choosing weekly or biweekly deliveries. Claire says only 10 subscriptions a week are needed for The General Store to become a dropoff spot. If you are – or might be – interested, please e-mail Claire at claire@thegeneralstoreseattle.com.

VIDEO: West Seattle Chamber of Commerce honors winners of Westside Awards, hears Saltchuk chair tout Seattle/Alaska ties

April 2, 2015 at 6:03 pm | In West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news | 2 Comments

Story/photos/video by Tracy Record and Patrick Sand
West Seattle Blog co-publishers

This morning’s Westside Awards breakfast was a celebration of West Seattle’s “thriving” business community, as WS Chamber of Commerce board chair Hamilton Gardiner put it, and of people/businesses making a difference here.

Nominations for the awards (announced last week) set a record, he said – more than 110. Also up: Attendance for Chamber events – 30 percent increase for the monthly lunch meetings, 15 percent for the monthly After-Hours gatherings.

The breakfast turnout was bigger than last year, too, with a wall-to-wall crowd in a waterfront banquet room at Salty’s on Alki (WSB sponsor), there to mingle as well as to applaud the winners and to hear a newsmaker keynote speaker – Mark Tabbutt, the West Seattleite who is chair of Saltchuk, parent company of Foss, whose two-year lease of nearby Terminal 5 has made national news, with Shell among its clients as the oil company anticipates resuming Arctic drilling.

But T-5 was only a small part of what Tabbutt talked about. Before touching on the Terminal 5 lease, Tabbutt went through a backstory of the company, described as now in its “third chapter.” Here’s our video of his entire presentation:

Its companies’ services include domestic shipping, air cargo, trucking, marine resources, trucking, petroleum distribution, international shipping. And he talked about Saltchuk’s status as a family-owned business: “That allows you to challenge yourself and your family to work out problems and try to do better for the company. We reinvest 90 percent of our earnings back into the company, and that has allowed us to grow.”

Tabbutt said Saltchuk has “a strong, long-term desire to protect the environment.” They’re converting vessels to run on natural gas, in a $100 million project: “We will reduce the amount of oil in (what equals) taking 38,000 vehicles off the streets of Puget Sound.” The company is also building the first two container ships in the world to burn natural gas.

A focus of his presentation was Seattle’s ties to Alaska, to which he attributed 113,000 local jobs, and “$6 billion in local labor earnings,” tracing back to the Gold Rush days. Then in the pipeline-building days, so many barges were on the water, “you could almost walk across Elliott Bay.” Now, “all freight bound for Alaska goes through the Pacific Northwest.” The pipeline traced back to the early ’70s energy crisis and was built in 4 years, he said, but “the oil coming out of Alaska is declining because there hasn’t been significant exploration.”

Then, to the Terminal 5 lease. “It obviously sparked quite a debate locally,” he said, while also thanking Port Commissioner Bill Bryant, one of the lease’s supporters, who was announced as being in attendance. He said that Shell “made many mistakes” in its first try, including relying on Gulf of Mexico contractors; this time, it’ll be local contractors, including Foss.

His slide deck switched to an image of the drilling platform Polar Pioneer, as Tabbutt said, “Here’s what’s coming to your neighborhood pretty soon … It’ll get a lot of notice.”


(Foss has not announced an expected arrival date for Polar Pioneer, being sealifted from Asia, but MarineTraffic.com shows an April 12th estimated arrival off Port Angeles; the Greenpeace vessel Esperanza is trailing it in the open Pacific and chronicling the trip here.)

He briefly defended the project as his speech wrapped up: “You can’t live here and not be an environmentalist. The debate can’t be on who’s a bigger environmentalist than anyone else. It should be who’s doing more to reduce oil consumption. But (in the meantime), where are we going to get our oil?” Tabbutt said Alaska oil is “the most environmentally friendly oil you can get,” and compared it to the current production boom in oil derived from fracking elsewhere in the U.S. “The environmental damage that’s being done by fracking (is sizable) compared to what we’ve been doing in Alaska.”

And now, the Westside Awards – each one accompanied by our video of the introduction and acceptance speeches:

EMERGING BUSINESS OF THE YEAR: This time last year, Laura Schneider was getting ready to open Meeples Games at California/Charlestown. This morning, she accepted the Westside Emerging Business of the Year award, after Elizabeth Pluhta from South Seattle College (WSB sponsor) introduced her with praise for Meeples’ community collaboration:

Schneider said her gaming café has “accomplished what we set out to do – create a third place” for the community.

NOT-FOR-PROFIT OF THE YEAR: Past board chair Nancy Woodland joked that since Clay Eals took over as Southwest Seattle Historical Society executive director, all of West Seattle has “become history wonks – everybody cares about history.” Eals accepted the award:

“History connects. When we are connected, we care,” Eals said, “We’re all here because we love where we live … It’s all about passion, and wearing it on your sleeve. With that passion and with your help, we’ve accomplished some amazing things” just in the past year-plus. He recalled the 1,000-plus turnout for the totem pole unveiling/dedication and looked ahead to events including historic-home tours as well as the ongoing Words, Writers, West Seattle literary event. “To do all this, we stand on the shoulders of giants,” he said, also recalling local heroes old and new, and supporters who were at the SWSHS table. And to spotlight what’s yet to come, the restoration of the Alki Homestead/Fir Lodge and renovation of the Admiral Theater, Eals pointed out Dinah Brein, the “creative and energetic manager” of The Admiral, and the new owner of the Homestead, Dennis Schilling. This fall’s gala theme will be “Coming Home to the Homestead,” Eals revealed.

WESTSIDE BUSINESS OF THE YEAR: Nucor Steel won this award, accepted by Matt Lyons:

Gardiner spoke of the recycled scrap metal on which Nucor’s work is based, as well as the plant’s status as an employer of 325 people and as a gateway to West Seattle, so prominent along the bridge. Lyons noted that Nucor has been in the same North Delridge/Youngstown location for 110 years.

WESTSIDER OF THE YEAR: Tenacious, a leader, visionary, dedicated – words that Josh Sutton of the West Seattle YMCA (WSB sponsor) used to describe Jim Jackson of Jackson, Morgan, & Hunt PLLC (also a WSB sponsor), honored as Westsider of the Year.

Jackson said the award was “a big surprise.” He paid tribute to the firm’s employees, his partners, and their hundreds of clients. Helping people “with their dreams and their aspirations” is a description of work that he heard some years back, and for him, Jackson said, “it stuck.”

Wishing the breakfast attendees a great day, Chamber CEO Lynn Dennis thanked them for being present to “share the best.”

SIDE NOTE: The Chamber has an all-new website that it promises will be updated frequently to share news from the organization and local businesses – check it out at wschamber.com.

Last chance for tickets to tomorrow’s Westside Awards breakfast

April 1, 2015 at 8:59 am | In West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news | Comments Off

Those smiling faces belong to Lynn Dennis, West Seattle Chamber of Commerce CEO, and Nancy Woodland, WestSide Baby executive director and past Chamber board chair. We photographed them last Thursday when the Chamber brought its monthly After Hours event to WS Baby – and we’re showing the pic this morning as a reminder that this is your last chance to buy tickets to tomorrow morning’s Chamber-presented Westside Awards – they need to have the attendee count locked in by noon today, and still had a few seats last we checked. The event starts at 7:30 am Thursday at Salty’s on Alki (WSB sponsor) and will feature award presentations for the honorees announced last week, as well as a keynote by West Seattleite Mark Tabbutt, chair of Saltchuk International. Online signusp are closed so call 206-932-5685 – before noon today! – to register for the breakfast.

Next new place to eat/drink at Alki Beach: Gelarto expanding to West Seattle with gelato, espresso, more

March 30, 2015 at 3:04 pm | In West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news | 20 Comments

Gelarto Italian Ice Cream and Global Arts, founded on Bainbridge Island, is expanding to add an Alki Beach location.

We discovered this in the city permit files over the weekend, with remodeling work planned at 2648 59th SW, former home of Alki Beach Dog. After sending a note to Gelarto’s proprietors, we went by the Alki site this morning to look, and found “COMING SOON – GELARTO” information already up in the window. We have since heard back from co-proprietor Jennifer Al-Abboud, who shared a detailed backstory:

We love West Seattle and considered moving there when searching for a home back in 2012. We were teaching overseas at the time, and there was very little inventory during our short search window so we landed in Poulsbo and ended up on Bainbridge where we now reside in a tiny 607 SF condo we share with our cat Jazz. We opened Gelarto in late August 2013 amidst threat of teacher layoffs, and we have since retired from teaching to pursue our gelato passion full time. We pride ourselves on having a strong owner presence, and we run the shop by ourselves with exception of the busy summer months.

Gelarto has been well received on Bainbridge Island, but our product offerings are limited due to a voluntary good-neighbor policy with the cafe next door. Despite strong community support, a seasonal product in a seasonal location proves challenging in the slow months when our small shop requires only one of us to run it. So in order to maximize our human resources and provide year-round sustainability, we decided to reach out across the water in search of a second location. While we intend to stay small and independent, we always felt West Seattle would be a natural fit for our family business if we ever decided to expand, so we started pounding the pavement in November.

Click to read the rest of Next new place to eat/drink at Alki Beach: Gelarto expanding to West Seattle with gelato, espresso, more…

Mayor Murray’s 2 1/2-plus-hour West Seattle visit, report #1: Roll call, walking tour, coffee chat

March 28, 2015 at 2:23 pm | In West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news, West Seattle politics | 15 Comments

(WSB photo: David Groves of Seattle Logo Pro presents the mayor with a hometown T-shirt)
2:23 PM: Within the past half-hour, Mayor Ed Murray wrapped up more than two and a half hours in West Seattle – including second-watch roll call at the Southwest Precinct, a walking tour of The Junction and Triangle, and an open-to-all coffee chat that drew more than 20 people. Talking with WSB for a few minutes after all that (we were along for the walking tour and coffee chat), the mayor said he was inspired by the “positive, can-do attitude” of the people he talked with – the “most upbeat … neighborhood” he’d visited. We’ll be adding more photos and the full story over the next few hours.

MIDNIGHT: Took longer than we had hoped. Here’s how it unfolded:

(Photo courtesy Mayor Murray’s office)
The mayor’s visit to the precinct wasn’t pre-announced to the media, unlike the walking tour, so we don’t know what was said – we heard about it from an officer we were talking to about something else, somewhere else, then asked mayoral communications director Viet Shelton if a photo were available. The walking tour started from Elliott Bay Brewing, where Murray checked out EB’s new reusable takeout containers:

Meeting up with the mayor there were four community advocates – René Commons of the Junction Neighborhood Organization (JuNO), Susan Melrose of the West Seattle Junction Association, Josh Sutton of the West Seattle YMCA (WSB sponsor), and Vlad Oustimovitch.

/CONTINUES/
Click to read the rest of Mayor Murray’s 2 1/2-plus-hour West Seattle visit, report #1: Roll call, walking tour, coffee chat…

Congratulations! 2015 Westside Awards for Nucor Steel, Meeples Games, Southwest Seattle Historical Society, James Jackson of Jackson, Morgan & Hunt PLLC

March 26, 2015 at 5:15 pm | In West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news | 1 Comment

The West Seattle Chamber of Commerce has just announced its 2015 Westside Awards winners, in advance of the presentation at the awards breakfast next Thursday (April 2nd):

Nucor Steel Seattle, Meeples Games, the Southwest Seattle Historical Society and the founder, James (Jim) Jackson of Jackson, Morgan & Hunt are the winners of the 2015 Westside Awards, presented by the West Seattle Chamber of Commerce.

Click to read the rest of Congratulations! 2015 Westside Awards for Nucor Steel, Meeples Games, Southwest Seattle Historical Society, James Jackson of Jackson, Morgan & Hunt PLLC…

BIZNOTES: West Seattle Brewing update; EcoBeauty closes

March 23, 2015 at 11:24 am | In West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news | 13 Comments

Two biznotes this morning, the first one a followup on an item from our Friday mega-roundup of food/drink notes:

WEST SEATTLE BREWING UPDATE: After its abrupt, unexplained closure some days ago, we had inquiries out, as noted in the aforementioned Friday roundup. Early this morning, we heard back from West Seattle Brewing‘s Drew Locke, who tells WSB via e-mail that it will reopen:

I am working on implementing espresso to our offerings and closed while we use the opportunity to finish employing/testing our 7BBL brew system (quintuple the production capacity we’ve employed since our inception), prepping for the addition of wine/cider & food as well, and finishing some construction elements that have gone to the wayside as I’ve had to bartend 60 hours/week over the past year.

No timeline was mentioned – we’re asking in a followup.

ECOBEAUTY SALON-SPA CLOSES: Thanks to Rick for the tip that this salon north of Morgan Junction has closed after more than 4 years; its website confirms the closure, and “For Lease” signs are already up at the 6040 California SW location. Proprietor Christina said on Facebook that she’s joining CoCo and Co. and that other stylists are “going to fabulous new salons in West Seattle.”

West Seattle Thriftway anniversary party revs up with Ladies Night

March 20, 2015 at 2:57 am | In Fun stuff to do, West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news | 5 Comments

As West Seattle Thriftway kicked off its 27th anniversary celebration this week, it brought back an event that was a huge hit last year – Ladies Night. Above, Thriftway’s Kolleen, Michele, and Gina played host for the throng who came to shop, sip, taste, and otherwise have fun:

Other local businesses and organizations were part of the party – below, Heather and Nancy from Illusions Hair Design:

Chris and Shelly from Sound Yoga:

Sandy and Danielle from ArtsWest:

The big basket of eggs was a reminder that Easter is just two weeks away – preceded as always by the big egg hunt at Thriftway:

This year, that’ll be Saturday, April 4th. Meantime, Thriftway’s anniversary sale continues through the end of March.

*West Seattle Thriftway, Illusions Hair Design, Sound Yoga, and ArtsWest are all current WSB sponsors.

West Seattle biznote: The Sneakery closing in The Junction, staying in Ballard

March 17, 2015 at 3:36 pm | In West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news | 27 Comments

Thanks to Dave for the tip that a “for lease” sign is now up in the window of The Sneakery at 4736 California SW in The Junction.

We checked in with proprietor Drea via e-mail; here’s what she told us:

The Sneakery will be leaving West Seattle at the end of April and consolidating things back to our original location on 65th Street in Ballard, where we’ve been since 2006. We had a great time in the Junction over the last 4 years and would like to thank our customers for their support. Most merchandise will be deeply discounted through the end of April, so we encourage everyone to use their gift certificates and coupons. Although we are sad to leave the Junction, we are also thrilled to be growing our business in Ballard, where we will be able to offer our customers even better selections and service.

The Sneakery’s West Seattle location opened in May 2011. Half of its side of the block has been a construction zone for the past year and a half.

Biznote: West Seattle Fabric Company changing focus, moving

March 15, 2015 at 6:45 pm | In West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news | 12 Comments

Another storefront in Admiral will be vacant soon – but the business that’s leaving it is NOT shutting down. Monica Skov of West Seattle Fabric Company announced late today that their focus is shifting, recognizing how the retail world is changing. From the message sent to the WSFC mailing list:

We are making a big shift to our business, and although it is a bittersweet decision, let’s celebrate together. As a retail storefront, we have had the beautiful benefit of getting to know all of the people in our community. We feel so thankful to have made connections and friendships that we would have never encountered. Inspiring a community of new sewing enthusiasts fills us with so much happiness. And I cannot tell you the joy I feel every time a customer comes in and says ~ I come here to be inspired. But the days of dense neighborhood shopping districts & bustling storefront commerce are evolving into online shopping and home delivery. Honestly, we’ve seen a shift from increased online sales and less storefront traffic. Shopping online has become much more convenient and in order to grow in an ever-changing economy we are going to transition our fabrics to an online-only fabric shop.

But, she continues, that’s just part of the change:

Seeing this trend for some time, we’ve been turning our focus toward the one thing you can’t get online – Services. The thing that we love about being small-business owners isn’t selling new collections or decorating a shop (although that is fun). We truly love helping our community. Our team has taught hundreds of customers to sew & quilt, we’ve been a resource for all sorts of sewing related questions and advice, and we’ve already completed a large number of customers’ quilts in the past couple of months. In addition to all of our other services, the ultimate way that we can help our community is Repairing and Servicing Sewing Machines, which we will now be offering.

So next month, West Seattle Fabric Company will move to a smaller space on Harbor Avenue in the ActivSpace [WSB sponsor] building, not retailing fabric, but focusing on services and education – classes, repairs, quilt finishing, plus, in relation to the online merchandise, “FREE local pick-up for our local online shoppers …” First, the shop (at 2210 California SW, where it opened in December 2010) plans a liquidation sale starting at 10 am Friday (March 20th), 30 percent off everything in the store, and “incentives for buying in bulk.” You can read the entire announcement here.

The General Store Seattle: New WSB sponsor; sale this weekend!

March 13, 2015 at 12:59 pm | In West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news | 2 Comments

Today we’re welcoming The General Store Seattle as a new WSB sponsor. New local sponsors get the chance to let you know what they’re all about:

The General Store Seattle focuses exclusively on US-made, locally produced items that are unique and hand-picked with an eye for quality, says proprietor Claire E. Jones (at right). “Our customers continually praise the high quality of our products and they love that their money is going directly back into their communities. They seek us out because they know they can find one-of-a-kind items that more than replace the lower-quality products found at big box retail chains.”

Claire says The General Store Seattle is inspired by the traditional general stores – some clothes, some household goods, some food-related items, all locally sourced, with her suppliers at most a few hours away from Seattle. Sourcing locally can get expensive sometimes, but Claire works to do the research necessary for you to be able to shop with The General Store Seattle and find merchandise at fair prices.

This weekend, The General Store Seattle has a special sale – 5% of your purchase will be donated to the charity of your choice. Go here to get full details.

The General Store Seattle is open Wednesdays-Sundays, 10 am-7 pm, on the street level at 3400 Harbor SW (map) – and you can shop any time via the store’s website, at thegeneralstoreseattle.com.

We thank The General Store Seattle for sponsoring independent, community-collaborative neighborhood news via WSB; find our current sponsor team listed in directory format here, and find info on joining the team by going here.

2 more days to get nominations in for this year’s Westside Awards

March 13, 2015 at 8:59 am | In West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news | Comments Off

Sunday (March 15th) is the deadline for you to get nominations in for this year’s Westside Awards, to be presented by the West Seattle Chamber of Commerce on April 2nd. You do NOT have to be a Chamber member to make a nomination or to be nominated. From the announcement first published here last month:

Westside Business of the Year – This nominee has been in business at least 3 years and demonstrated business excellence and success.

Westside Emerging Business – This nominee has been in business for less than 3 years but is meeting the challenges of a growing business through leadership.

Westside Not-For-Profit of the Year – This nominee Not-for-Profit is making our community a better place to live while contributing to community benefit through their mission.

Westsider of the Year – This nominee is making a lasting impact on our community and the lives of or is an up-and-coming community role model.

Make a nomination online through the Westside Awards Nomination Form – a different one for each category – and again, Sunday’s the deadline, so do it before the weekend’s out! Here’s our coverage of last year’s ceremony. You can buy your ticket(s) for this year’s event online – use the “register now” link on this page.

West Seattle biznote: Admiral Benbow’s owners say they’re closing

March 10, 2015 at 10:01 pm | In West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news, West Seattle restaurants | 26 Comments

Just shy of a year after the owner of the then-Heartland Café announced he’d sold it, the owners who then resurrected its former identity as the Admiral Benbow say they’re closing it. Announced on Facebook tonight by co-proprietor Allison Hill:

It is with great sadness that Ian Hill and I are announcing the closure of The Admiral Benbow. We made a great run at it and love it dearly, but some things just aren’t meant to be. We want to thank all the friends, fans, pirates, scallywags, bands and everyone else who helped make this dream of ours come true, even though it was only a short period of time. Our last day will be Sunday, March 22nd. So come down and see us over the next 12 days and help us go out with a blast! We’re still open until then so come get your drink on or catch a show. Help us send this place off the right way! Thank you all again. We love you and can’t thank you enough.

The Hills had applied the Benbow brand to the entire operation at 4210 SW Admiral Way – restaurant, bar, and entertainment venue – in a nod to its long-ago fame as the Admiral Benbow Inn.

West Seattle biznote: Alki Kayak Tours open for the season

March 7, 2015 at 7:00 pm | In West Seattle businesses, West Seattle news | 4 Comments

More spring-like weather is forecast for tomorrow (remember, it’s still technically winter for another two weeks) – so you might be interested to know, if you hadn’t noticed already, that Alki Kayak Tours is open for the season at Seacrest (1660 Harbor SW). Proprietor Greg Whittaker (who shared, and is in, the photo) says AKT is starting its 11th year, with rentals for getting out on the water or rolling/riding along the beach. As the season gets going, they’re open noon-sunset on Fridays, 10 am-sunset on Saturdays/Sundays. (And of course, with the time change tonight, sunset will be later starting tomorrow.)

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