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Groundswell NW Events

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Other Events

Sat, Sep 20th, @9:00am - 12:00PM
Carkeek Stars Work Party
Sat, Sep 27th, @10:00am - 03:00PM
North Beach Natural Area Work Party
Sun, Sep 28th, @11:00am - 06:00PM
Sustainable Ballard Festival!

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Become a Groundswell NW Member!

Take a more active role in your community by supporting the work of Groundswell NW! Please become a 2011 Groundswell NW member. Simply print out this membership form and mail it with your tax-deductible contribution today or click on the "Make A Donation" button on this page to contribute online! Thank you very much to the people who have already made a generous contribution.

Board Member Search

Groundswell NW is seeking new board members, committed to making NW Seattle a greener, more livable community. We could use positive, creative individuals with skill in a number of areas, including database management, compiling our e-newsletter, law, real estate, marketing and community organizing. In particular, we are seeking a person who has the skills and energy to help with the duties of treasurer. Please contact David Folweiler, (206) 714-4271.
Variety 4 Charity Benefits GNW Print E-mail

For the second year, Egan's and Susan Harper teamed up to put on an enchanted night of entertainment to benefit Groundswell NW on November 10, 2012. A nearly packed house enjoyed an hour and a half of great local acts and delicious food and drink to support our third decade of creating parks and habitat in NW Seattle.


Sunset Hill - Shilshole Gateway Meeting Oct. 1 Print E-mail

If you walk, bike or drive the connection between Sunset Hill and Shilshole on 36th, 61st, and 38th, we want to hear your thoughts about possible improvements to this corridor. Thanks to all who came to a spirited community workshop October 1 to give their thoughts on a range of ideas for both short- and long-term opportunities to make the corridor safer and more pleasant. If you weren't able to make it, you can post your thoughts on our Facebook page. and look for a feedback form to weigh in on a variety of options. And stay tuned for fall workparties to continue the weed suppression at the 36th Ave NW median ends, then start planting low-maintenance groundsovers and low shrubs.

Kirke Park named September Park of the Month Print E-mail

Update: Construction started February 1, 2012 - see this My Ballard post, this Ballard News Tribune article and this KOMO Ballard article.

In celebration of Ballard's green spaces, Groundswell NW features and celebrates a "Park of the Month" and the community around it. In September the spotlight was on Kirke Park. Located on the east side of 9th Ave NW between NW 70th and NW 73rd, Kirke Park is Ballard's newest park acquisition. At nearly an acre (39.000sf), it is a significant addition to the community, serving a part of Whittier Heights that previously had no parks.

“Kirke" is a Nordic word meaning "church"and was chosen as the park name to recognize this land as the former site of the Seventh Elect Church in Israel, a small religious sect founded in 1922 by a Midwestern preacher named Daniel Sawlt. The men of the colony were easily recognized by their long hair and beards. In the early days of the church they were often seen preaching downtown on the corner of Pike and Fourth. They also asked for odd jobs in the neighborhood, which alarmed some of the neighbors. Following Sawlt's death in 1929, the colony, which embraced a celibate lifestyle, declined in membership. The church survived for another eighty years, however, until it was officially dissolved in February 2010. Rumors of strange activity among the few last men who lived at the site circulated widely due to the secluded nature of the property. See the project's webpage for more info, and a more detailed history of the park can be found here.

Troll's Knoll Project Funded Print E-mail

The Troll's Knoll Project has been FUNDED and awarded $685,000 from the Seattle Parks and Green Spaces Levy Opportunity Fund!!!!  The Seattle City Council unanimously passed the Opportunity fund final list on March 10th.  See the video at the "Parks and Seattle Center Committee 3/10/2011" link under videos on the left of the page. The committee addresses the opportunity fund around minute 50 and passes the recommended projects list around minute 65.



This project entailed endless hours of community meetings and coordination with our neighbors.  We were pleased to find out that the project proposal was uncannily similar to original project designs from 20 years ago when the Troll was first introduced.  More details on the Parks Levy proposal, the original 20 year old project designs and much more at our facebook page:


Seattle Parks Need Your Input! Print E-mail
Seattle Parks Foundation and their partners have prepared a report on parks maintenance and are asking for our input on a how we should address the chronic funding shortfall faced by Seattle’s park system.  They have prepared a short survey here to voice your opinion, as well as a webpage where you can download a copy of the report.  Since the results of the survey are available to those who take it, it is not only a great opportunity to voice your opinion on this important issue (and maybe win a $50 REI gift card!) but also to see what others have to say.  Please take a moment to share your opinion now.  Thank you!
Salmon Bay Natural Area Stewardship Print E-mail

Last summer's warm weather brought an increase in drinking, camping and other illegal activity at Salmon Bay Natural Area. To help address these issues, we held a workparty Aug. 27 to weed, clean up, and thin some of the shrubs to open up sight lines to the plaza. Then we focused on positive solutions a meeting of stakeholders, including neighbors, community members and agencies with some role in managing the site on Aug. 30. Thanks to The Canal for hosting the meeting, and to representatives of Seattle Public Utilities, Seattle Department of Transpotation and Seattle Police Department for attending. Later in the fall, Seattle Conservation Corps transplanted several shrubs to further open up sight lines and block unauthorized access paths. Things were much quieter at the site in the late summer, and we are committed to keeping it safe and attractive for all. 

Seattle Parks and Recreation 2011 Development Plan Print E-mail

The draft Seattle Parks and Recreation 2011 Development Plan is now available on-line for your review at this website: http://seattle.gov/parks/Publications/DevelopmentPlan.htm.

Seattle Parks and Recreation 2011 Development Plan updates the 2006 Development Plan. This plan is specific to acquisition and development efforts that will be pursued over the next five to six years, primarily for outdoor recreation and open space. The Plan includes goals and policies, analyzes demands and needs, and identifies capital improvement projects that help implement that Development Plan. 

Annual Meeting features Sally Bagshaw, Local Heroes Print E-mail

Thanks to all who attended our March 2 annual meeting, and especially to Councilmember Sally Bagshaw, Chair of the Parks and Seattle Center Committee, for coming to discuss the state of parks in the current tough budget situation (see Sally's blog and this KOMO story). Catherine Darley was elected President, following two years of service by Andrea Faste, and Lydia Marshall and Dawn Hemminger were elected to continue their roles as Secretary and Treasurer, respectively.

Three Local Heroes awards recognized volunteers who go well beyond the call of duty, which is truly what makes an organization like Groundswell work (more in this article by 2010 Local Hero Michael Harthorne). We recognize two volunteers for their hands-on efforts, one through Groundswell work parties and one on her own initiative, and another for his leadership on a number of fronts in the community.

Carol Duescher lives in Magnolia and on her own initiative does a daily sweep of parks and public access sites, typically starting in the wee hours at Discovery Park and working her way along Commodore Way, over the Ballard Bridge and around to Salmon Bay Natural Area, picking up trash and sorting out recyclables. Thank you, Carol, for your remarkable efforts to help keep the shores of Salmon Bay clean!

Mark Blitzer has been a steady volunteer at the Salmon Bay Natural Area, where he came to one of our early work parties and just kept coming back. Organizing volunteer work parties can be a lonely task, so it is very heartening to find a volunteer who can nearly always be counted on to show up and do whatever is needed. Mark is that kind of volunteer, and he also pitches in at other work parties, whether for other Groundswell projects or other environmental organizations.

Robert Drucker has emerged as a community leader, serving as a trustee for the Sunset Hill Community Association, representing it at the Ballard District Council, then representing Ballard at the City Neighborhood Council. He served on the Neighborhood Matching Fund Citywide Review Team, helping award grants for community project throughout the city. He was recently elected to his 2nd term as Sunset Hill Community Association President, where he has overseen the creation of a successful raingarden at their clubhouse. More recently, he spearheaded the Sunstation Park design project, co-sponsored by Groundswell, which resulted in an innovative concept for transforming a surplussed City Light substation into a solar generation park and community gathering space.

Volunteer Survey Opportunity Print E-mail

Hello Volunteers.

Although you volunteer your time and effort to help environmental and community conditions, those efforts are not well understood and therefore, not well appreciated. The University of Washington Human Dimensions of Natural Resource Management research group is conducting a joint study with the U.S. Forest Service to enhance our understanding of volunteering and stewardship in the Seattle-Tacoma region. In order to elucidate the important roles that volunteers play in improving their communities and environments, we are requesting that past and present volunteers complete a short electronic survey.

The survey will take about 15-20 minutes and attempts to understand why you volunteer, what constrains you from volunteering as much as you would like, what your commitments, if any, are to volunteering, and who volunteers are in terms of demographics. The survey also has a few measures of loyalty to volunteering. Your participation will greatly help efforts to give volunteering and volunteers the status they deserve in our society. The results of our study and analyses will be shared with every participating volunteer coordinating organization that is interested in knowing how motivated, committed, loyal, and constrained their volunteers are.


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