Tag Archives: community involvement

Beacon Bits: Halloween, Election Day, and Friday night music

It's that time of year again -- time for all little ghosties to celebrate Halloween! Photo by Paul Sapiano via Creative Commons.
Seattle Parks and Recreation is hosting Halloween events for kids at our local community centers on Beacon Hill.

Jefferson Community Center will have a Halloween Howl and Carnival on Friday, October 22 from 6:00 to 7:30 pm, with games, goodies, prizes, a haunted house, and more. Costumes are optional, but encouraged, and the event is for children of all ages. Admission is free but carnival tickets are 25 cents each. The JCC is also holding a Toddler Trick-or-Treat day on Thursday, October 21 from 11:00 am to 12:30 pm. The little ones can dress up, play games, then enjoy “tot time” in the gym. The toddler event is $2 per child. For more information, call 206-684-7481. Jefferson Community Center is located at 3801 Beacon Avenue South.

Van Asselt Community Center is hosting a Fall Harvest Festival for kids up to age 12 on Friday, October 29, from 6:00 to 8:00 pm. They tell us it’s a “safe evening of games and goodies.” Kids can celebrate by wearing costumes and bringing a goodie bag or basket (optional). There is no fee for the event. Van Asselt Community Center is located at 2820 South Myrtle Street. For more information, call 206-386-1921.

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Live and local music is coming to Tasha’s Bistro Café on Friday nights, organized by Beacon Music (the folks behind this summer’s Beacon Rocks! music series).

Performances are every Friday night at 7:30 pm. Families are welcome. There is no cover charge. The first performance is October 22, with Jack LeNoir and Betty Jean playing jazz standards, eclectic rock and original music.

Performers who would like to perform at Tasha’s should contact Betty Jean at beaconrocks@gmail.com. Tasha’s Bistro Café is located at 2524 Beacon Avenue South.

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Sustainable South Seattle (S3) is hosting a Climate Co-op Workshop to share ideas about how we can work together as a community to save money, improve our neighborhood and do our part to take care of the planet for our children. Guest Speakers at the workshop include Deputy Mayor Darryl Smith, Brooks Kolb, Michael Murphy, and others.

The forum is on Wednesday, October 20, from 6:00 to 8:00 pm at the Southside Commons, 3518 South Edmunds Street in Columbia City, just a block and a half away from Columbia City Station. Please RSVP to climate.coop@gmail.com. If you need language assistance please say which language within the email. Childcare will be available.

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The NAMSAYIN Beacon Hill shirts sold out on Sunday at Deli. You can see some of the happy buyers here, including BHB‘s own Jason. Stay tuned to the blog for some shirt giveaways, once we come up with a good contest idea or two!

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Laura Feinstein writes,

I’m hoping you will post a request to our south end neighbors to consider applying for a position on one of the citizen advisory committees that that city hosts. I am a member of the Solid Waste Advisory Committee and I am the only member from the south end of Seattle (south of I-90). Our part of the city is very under-represented. This is a way to weigh-in on key city decisions.

Application information is here and if you miss the October 15 deadline, send your application anyway… they will likely consider late applications.

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Speaking of civic responsibility, ballots for the General Election should be arriving in your mailbox any day now. Please vote thoughtfully, and don’t forget to mail the ballot in before it’s too late!

Nice shoes! Photo by Theresa Thompson via Creative Commons.

Seattle Night Out coming on August 3

Seattle Night Out is coming on Tuesday, August 3. Night Out is an evening event in which communities hold block parties where neighbors can connect with each other and organize their neighborhoods against crime. This year’s theme is “Celebrating Crime Free Neighborhoods.” You can find more information, and register online to hold a block party, at the Seattle Police Night Out website. If you register your block, you may be able to close your street to traffic in order to hold your block party.

You may wish to apply for a Small Sparks Grant to pay for activities at your block party. The Small Sparks Fund provides awards up to $1,000 to support projects that help build a stronger and healthier community. You’ll need to get your application in soon; there is a six week lead time. For more information about Small Sparks, see the website.

If you would like us to post about your Beacon Hill Night Out block party, email us. We’ll compile all the block parties into one post that we’ll post shortly before August 3.

These 12th Avenue South neighbors enjoyed their Night Out block party last year. Photo by Bridget Christian in the Beacon Hill Blog photo pool on Flickr.

Process, participation, and progress: a neighborhood planning primer

Many Beacon Hill neighbors took part in a planning meeting last March. Photo by Jason.
While many people pay a great deal of attention to national politics, relatively few participate (or are even aware) of events happening in their own neighborhood—until issues percolate into the media. Recent events in Southeast Seattle might have caused some neighbors to wonder how the neighborhood planning process works, and what is actually in the North Beacon Hill Neighborhood Plan. Here’s a quick introduction to planning in our neighborhood.

What is a Neighborhood Council?  Why should I get involved?

North Beacon Hill is fortunate to have an engaged neighborhood council and to be part of a dynamic, functional district council. The North Beacon Hill Council describes their role as follows:

“NBHC is one of the the major community groups that represents North Beacon Hill to city, county and state agencies. It is the major political body of the neighborhood that works to improve the living conditions of our neighborhood… We work to empower our neighbors to implement the improvements to the neighborhood that they envision, we work to inform our neighbors of issues that will affect our standard of living, and we work to create a sense of community for our neighborhood.”

If you can make it to one meeting, you’re a voting member of the North Beacon Hill Council.  Attend a meeting to familiarize yourself with the issues and people involved.  If you can’t make it regularly, stay connected and attend when you’re able or when an issue motivates you.  It’s even possible to vote by proxy.  We have the Beacon Hill Blog, the BAN mailing list, and the North Beacon Hill Council website as resources.    Get involved!

Who represents neighborhoods?

There are important connections between neighborhood councils, district councils, and City Council.  Seattle elects City Council members “at large”—all council members represent all residents.  To ensure that residents of all neighborhoods have representation on the community level, Seattle has neighborhood councils—groups that meet in the community and are composed of residents, business owners, and other interested parties.  Residents and members of the councils elect board members.  Council Boards interact with the City and other levels of government, representing the community. The neighborhood councils also elect representatives to a district council. Seattle has 13 district councils.  North and South Beacon Hill are part of the Greater Duwamish District Council. District Council representatives participate in the City Neighborhood Council.

The North Beacon Hill Neighborhood Council and the Greater Duwamish District Council are a key way for our community to engage with City Council members, the Mayor’s office, and other elected officials.  They also advocate for our community to receive funds for sidewalks, crosswalks, greater police engagement, and more.

NBHC meets the first Thursday of every month at the Beacon Hill Library, 2821 Beacon Avenue South. The next meeting is March 4 at 7:00 pm.

What are neighborhood plans? Who develops them?

There has been active debate recently around the three identical appeals filed to oppose Neighborhood Plan Updates in North Beacon Hill, North Rainier (a.k.a. Mount Baker Station), and Othello.  The appeals themselves are intended to address concerns about the environmental impact of development in the area. The appellants and their supporters are also concerned about the process the Department of Planning and Development (DPD) used to create the updates.  This is a separate, but very important issue.
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