Movies on the move! New location for West Seattle Outdoor Movies at end of this season

(Full house at a 2015 screening)

Earlier this week, we published the annual call for suggestions for this year’s West Seattle Outdoor Movies series.

Suggestions are still being accepted – but there’s also some news about the future of the series.

If you have been to West Seattle Outdoor Movies, you know the courtyard next to Hotwire Online Coffeehouse (WSB sponsor), longtime presenter of the series, can get crowded, to say the least.

That’s led to calls for a larger space. And starting with the last movie this summer – there’ll be one.

Here’s how Hotwire proprietor and WSOM guru Lora Swift explains it:

As the coordinator and emcee of the West Seattle Outdoor Movies, I wanted to share a new vision for our yearly community event. Beginning in 2016, we are partnering with the YMCA to co-host the movies. Our first five movies (beginning July 16) will be shown in the Hotwire courtyard, as they have for the past 13 years. The big change is our final movie for 2016 (August 20) will be moved to the Triangle Festival Street, next to the YMCA. In 2017, and beyond, you’ll be able to watch the Outdoor movies at the Triangle Festival Street.

I’ve certainly been delighted to host the movies, it’s been a joy seeing our community together watching films, raising money for our local charities, and enjoying some entertainment. As with all popular community events, we’ve seen crowds grow as more people discover this free and fun gathering. To continue to give the community this fabulous event, we’ve decided to move to a larger space, which Josh Sutton and his staff are gladly accepting.

Join us for the first five films in the usual space, then make sure you put on the calendar “Triangle Festival Street” for that final movie on August 20th.

The “festival street” will be SW Snoqualmie between 36th and 37th. Here’s the view from Josh Sutton of the West Seattle YMCA (WSB sponsor):

The West Seattle & Fauntleroy Y is excited to continue the great traditions of West Seattle Movies on the Wall at the new Triangle Festival Street. We’ll continue to work with other community partners like the West Seattle Junction Association, local sponsors, and other non-profits.

When the community came up with the idea of a Festival Street in the Triangle seven years ago, outdoor movies were an early programming suggestion. The Y will begin to reach out for other community partners and volunteers to help guide programming and use of the Triangle Festival Street. We’ll use this first summer to try out 4-5 different program activities on the Festival Street, including hosting the last movie of Summer 2016 series. Our hope is to have a full slate of 10-15 events and activities in 2017.

So again, this is just early warning: The first 5 West Seattle Outdoor Movies in the Hotwire courtyard, then off to the new “Festival Street” space on 36th SW outside the Y. The movie slate will be announced soon, but first it’s last call for suggestions – either below, or in the comment section on our Monday story.

P.S. Here’s an invitation for local nonprofits to be part of the fundraising at each West Seattle Outdoor Movies night – this summer, the tradition of a raffle to help a WS nonprofit will continue; if yours is interested, e-mail – thanks!

17 Replies to "Movies on the move! New location for West Seattle Outdoor Movies at end of this season"

  • Fregirl May 20, 2016 (11:19 pm)

    I can’t walk there, and that’s half the reason I go. It being right there in Junction is a huge draw, with lots of free parking nearby and so walk accessible.  I also won’t be able to have my mocha and movie, which is very disappointing. I’m surprised because this is going to cost Hotwire some serious income. They sell a LOT of food and beverages before those movies! Why would they want to give up all that business? Doesn’t seem like a smart move.

  • LyndaB May 21, 2016 (12:31 am)

    Maybe Hotwire is going mobile!   :)

  • T May 21, 2016 (10:18 am)

    Purple Rain, Labrinyth, Grease, Blues Brothers, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Yellow Submarine, Fame

  • diane2726 May 21, 2016 (10:40 am)

    I liked being able to walk their too and have kids riding their bikes.. bummer. 

  • kg May 21, 2016 (11:42 am)

    Sometimes events outgrow their venues. I don’t think there was some nefarious plot by the “Festival Street” against Hotwire. I am sure the parking issue as well as the refreshment issue will be addressed by the time the venue is changed.

    Give it a shot then tactfully give your input to make things better.

  • JanS May 21, 2016 (11:45 am)

    but it limits the people who can actually go, as the crowds get bigger. I can’t walk to either place…

  • Stephen M May 21, 2016 (1:35 pm)

    Festival Street sounds great! (This is the first I’m hearing about it). And what agreat way to kick it off by moving this popular event to the new, more expansive space. As West Seattle grows we’re going to need to find bigger and more community gathering places. Thanks to the folks who helped organize this smooth transition rather than letting the WSOM become a victim of its own success. 

  • Julia May 21, 2016 (5:31 pm)

    Is there a different email address for Lora? I tried using this one but it gets returned. Thanks. 

  • West Seattle since 1979 May 21, 2016 (7:39 pm)

    That area is accessible by bus too.

  • Justin May 21, 2016 (10:02 pm)

    The last starfighter

  • West Seattle since 1979 May 22, 2016 (12:53 am)

    Also , since Wesr Seattle is such a large peninsula, it’s kind of hard to have a site that’s walkable for everyone.

  • Chemist May 22, 2016 (9:24 am)

    Ooh, a chance I’ll be able to get a BBQ sandwich and then go watch a movie (like labyrinth) outdoors? Awesome.

  • David Moya May 22, 2016 (9:27 am)

    Being someone who regularly walks from our place on Beach Drive right near La Rustica to the Junction and back, a 25-30 minute walk which includes the Jacobsen and even steeper Edmunds hills, I can assure you that the short distance from the Junction to the Triangle is walkable. But if it’s not for someone for whatever reason, there are also bus stops in the vicinity (RapidRide stop near Les Schwab, for example). As for free parking, we’ve never had a problem parking in the Triangle in the evening. Our go-to parking area whenever we go to Jones BBQ or West Seattle Brewing is the area right outside Alki Lumber, which is right down the street from the YMCA.

  • David May 22, 2016 (9:31 am)

    As for Hotwire, I hope she brings a mobile coffee stand to the new movie location! It was always fun grabbing an espresso drink right before the show.

  • SeaVieu May 22, 2016 (7:14 pm)

    We’re so happy to hear about the new bigger venue!

  • sam-c May 23, 2016 (8:55 am)

    Wow, so much complaining!  I am looking forward to see how this new location works out. May have to give it a try, and it sounds like there might be more room, not just from a larger venue, but by all the people deciding to not come.  

    • WSB May 23, 2016 (9:42 am)

      The statements above don’t even scratch the surface, really, of a bigger story I wish I had time to tell, of what it’s taken to put the movies on for many years – a small, hard-working group of volunteers, which co-publisher Patrick has been involved with, from serving as a backup projection operator here and there to helping clean up the courtyard and pack away the equipment after everyone’s gone – and how much of a bummer it’s been to see people show up and realize there’s just nowhere left to sit, even fairly early. Room for more attendees also means more people to buy into the fundraising raffles for local nonprofits, which have received thousands of dollars in much-needed contributions over the years thanks to the generosity of the sponsors and other merchants who have donated raffle items, and the concessions, which also are charity fundraisers. (I have a fun memory from a pre-WSB summer, winning one of the many coffee cards that Lora has donated as raffle items over the years.) It’s going to be sad in a way to leave the comfy confines of the courtyard – again, this summer’s first five movies will be there, then the sixth will be the first in the “Festival Street” – but exciting to see what it’ll be like. – TR

Sorry, comment time is over.