Tag Archives: seafair

It’s Blue Angels time again

Photo by Joshua Davis via Creative Commons/Flickr.
It’s that time of year again. The Blue Angels are returning for their annual Seafair air show performance, which means they’ll be buzzing Beacon Hill for a few days later this week. Blue Angel #7 arrives today, the team arrives tomorrow, and the practices and shows start on Thursday, August 2.

During the Blue Angels’ performances and practices, I-90 will be completely closed to everyone—vehicles, pedestrians, and cyclists, in both directions, between I-5 and Island Crest Way on Mercer Island.

Here’s the schedule of this week’s shows and practices, including the Blue Angels and other aircraft involved in the celebration events:

Thursday, 8/2: Air show/practice, 10 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. (I-90 closed 9:45 a.m. – noon and 1:15 – 2:30 p.m.)

Friday, 8/3: Air show, 11:20 a.m.-2:30 p.m. (I-90 closed 12:45 p.m. – 2:40 p.m.)

Saturday, 8/4: Air show, 10:50 a.m. – 12:40 p.m., 1 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. (I-90 closed 12:45 p.m. – 2:40 p.m.)

Sunday, 8/5: Air show, 10:05 a.m. – noon, 1 p.m. – 2:30 p.m., 3:15-4:05 p.m. (I-90 closed 12:45 p.m. – 2:40 p.m.)

Be aware that the Angels fly very low over North Beacon Hill — it can be a pretty good show, but also startling if you’re not used to it. Your pets may be frightened, so be careful and keep them safe.

Blue Angels to buzz Beacon this week

Blue Angels flying directly over 17th Ave. S. Photo by Wendi.
The Blue Angels are back in town for Seafair, which means that Beacon Hill residents can expect the usual close-up view of the Angels as they practice and perform their choreographed aerial acrobatics directly over our neighborhood.

The squadron will practice on Thursday, August 4 from 10 a.m. until noon and again from 1:30-2:30 p.m. Actual performances will be on Friday, August 5, through Sunday, August 7, each day from 1:30-2:30 p.m.

Practices and performances will force complete closures of I-90 due to Federal Aviation Administration safety rules, so be aware that there will be congestion. If you need to drive across the lake using I-90 on Thursday – Sunday mornings, you should drive at least one hour before the closure times.

On Thursday, I-90 will be closed twice. The express lanes will close at 9 a.m. and reopen by 3:30 p.m., and the mainline will close from 9:45 a.m. until noon, and then again from 1:15-2:30 p.m.

On Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, the express lanes will close at least two hours before the shows and reopen by 3:30 p.m., and the mainline will be closed from 12:45 – 2:40 p.m. each day.

There will be loud noise from the jets during the practices and performances, so take special care of your pets. As on the Fourth of July, some pets react negatively to the loud noise from the Blue Angels and may run away.

For further information about this year’s air show, see the Seafair website.

Construction, Seafair to cause traffic delays

Look up next week and you might see these guys flying right over your head. Photo by Wendi.
It’s construction season, which means there are a lot of projects that will cause delays and reroutes to travelers on Beacon Hill and in nearby areas. There are so many projects that rather than list them all, we’ll send you to the lists on the Seattle Department of Transportation website: Sodo projects, South Seattle projects.

You might particularly want to note a few special events. The Seafair Torchlight Run will cause the northbound lanes of the Alaskan Way Viaduct to be closed tonight from 5:45pm to 7:45pm, and the Torchlight Parade will close Fourth Avenue all the way from Broad Street near Seattle Center, south to Qwest Field. Next week, the Blue Angels will return to buzz Beacon Hill on August 5-8, in the process closing I-90 to traffic from 9:45am to noon and 1:15 to 2:30pm on August 5, and from 12:45 to 2:40pm on August 6-8.

Among other construction projects in the area, this week a crew worked on the new pedestrian-activated flashing light crosswalk that is being installed next to the library at Beacon and Forest. Photo by Jason.

Beacon Bits, Getting Around edition: shuttling to Seafair, making light rail work, and who is riding Link?

This crowd of folks was in Mount Baker watching the Seafair hydroplane races in 1965. Plan to do the same this year? Light rail can get you there. Photo courtesy of Seattle Municipal Archives.
This crowd of folks was in Mount Baker watching the Seafair hydroplane races in 1965. Plan to do the same this year? Light rail can get you there. Photo courtesy of Seattle Municipal Archives.
Going to Seafair festivities this weekend? Forget your car, and take Link light rail! Take the light rail to the Othello Station and catch a free Seafair Express Shuttle to the front gate, or go to the Columbia City Station and walk approximately one mile to the main gate.


Roger Valdez of Beacon Hill writes in Sightline Daily about the long path to geting light rail in Seattle, and suggests steps the city will need to take to make it work in the long run, including smart land use policies that enhance and create transit demand by creating denser communities, and establishment of policies that will encourage and support transit ridership.


City Councilman Bruce Harrell reports his involvement in securing federal funds for lighting, pedestrian, and transit improvements at the Mount Baker light rail station and the Rainier Avenue South and South Jackson Street areas. The Rainier project will provide buses with “queue jumps” and traffic signal priority, as well as adding 15 bus bulbs. These changes will allow buses to save time by bypassing traffic and avoiding merges into heavy traffic. The Mount Baker project will involve lighting which will link the station with Franklin High School, and provide safer crossing for pedestrians on Rainier Avenue and MLK.


Nina Shapiro in the Seattle Weekly discusses issues of cultural disparity on Link light rail: is the train just “stuff white people like?” However, her article currently contains one big error — she suggests that riders of bus routes such as the #42 avoid Link because transfers from Link to the bus are not free. This is not true. Link tickets allow you to transfer to a bus for free. If #42 riders are avoiding Link for that reason, it is because of a misunderstanding of the fare system, and perhaps because Sound Transit/Metro haven’t yet done the best possible job of communicating how it works.

Beacon Bits: Blue Angels, business awards, and parking issues

The Blue Angels fly directly over North Beacon Hill during Seafair. Photo by Wendi.
The Blue Angels fly directly over North Beacon Hill during Seafair. Photo by Wendi.
It’s almost Seafair time, so it’s time to be prepared for the noise and distraction of Blue Angels flying directly over Beacon Hill.

Here’s the schedule of Angels’ practices and performances:

  • July 29: Blue Angels arrival
  • July 30: Blue Angels practice times:
    • 10 a.m.-12 p.m.
    • 1:30 p.m.-2:30 p.m.
  • July 31-August 2: Blue Angels performances:
    • July 31: 1:20 p.m.-2:30 p.m.
    • August 1: 1:20 p.m.-2:30 p.m.
    • August 2: 1:20 p.m.-2:30 p.m.
  • August 3: Blue Angels depart

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Last week’s commentary by Frederica Merrell about small business owners and the planning process generated some interesting comments, including information about how local businesses can apply for the 2009 Mayor’s Small Business Awards, and discussion about how local businesses can get their concerns heard.

Neighbor Brook commented, “In most other neighborhoods, they’d get a fair say because at least some of them would be involved in an active neighborhood chamber of commerce that would contribute to planning, go after development grants, and such. I’m sure it’s a challenge in a neighborhood as diverse as ours, but everyone is losing out without an organization like that.” The Beacon Hill Blog has commented on this concern previously.

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In the BHB forum, Gracie P writes:

Has there been any discussion among folks about how to cope with the RPZ when going on vacation? We’re taking a road trip in one car, trying to figure out what will happen with the other one while we are gone… Yes, we could tackle the issue that multiple cars is a bit excessive, but we’d be in the same boat if we had one car and took link to SeaTac.

Not that it wasn’t illegal to leave a car for more than 72 hours before the RPZ, but… with actual parking patrols happening up here, we are realizing we can’t just blissfully leave a car on the street while we travel.

Have any ideas or suggestions for Gracie? Please post them in the Forum.