The Gin Griffey Juniper Cocktail
Mount St. Helens, 40 Years On
April | May 2020
FOUR NORTHWEST TASTING ROOMS
NEW DINING EXPERIENCE
TRIP PLANNER: SKAGIT VALLEY PG. 80
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On May 18, 1980, Washingtonâ€™s skyline changed drastically. Mount St. Helensâ€™ eruption captivated the world, killed dozens, and altered a landscape forever. But forty years later, the area around Mount St. Helens is reborn, and scientists use it as a living research facility. (pg. 58)
Now and Then
U.S. Geological Survey
COR Cellars in Lyle reimagined its winery, which now invites visitors to stay awhile.
APRIL | MAY 2020 • volume 20
Forty Years On
Forty years ago, Mount St. Helens erupted in the deadliest volcanic eruption in the contiguous United States. Today, the area is a vital scientific learning lab.
Work is more than a desk, a computer and that sneezing coworker. We found four workspaces that make design—and employee comfort—the centerpiece.
written by Sheila G. Miller
written by Melissa Dalton
Bending the Rules If your goal in 2020 is to try new things, yoga on horseback is one to put on your bucket list.
photography by Winston O’Neil
DEPARTMENTS APRIL | MAY 2020 • volume 20
LIVE 14 NOTEBOOK
Spring is in the air, and there are plenty of events around Washington to prove it. Plus, an interview with an almost-professional ballet dancer about her new memoir.
20 FOOD + DRINK
From the top cheese options in the state to a movie series that serves highbrow dinners, we’ve got your food needs covered.
24 FARM TO TABLE
Washington is ground zero for the asparagus industry. We have chefs’ best takes on how to dress up this delicacy.
28 HOME + DESIGN
Your outdoor space can be beautiful—just ask these homeowners who overcame awkward patios and overgrown, shady yards.
34 MIND + BODY
Sister Madonna Buder is known as the Iron Nun for the hundreds of triathlons she’s completed since she started running in her 40s.
36 ARTIST IN RESIDENCE
The Pilchuck Glass School helped redefine glass as more than a functional material—it can be art.
THINK 40 STARTUP
If you can dream it, the Glowforge 3D laser printer can probably make it.
42 WHAT’S GOING UP
Senior living in Washington continues to be a booming industry.
44 WHAT I’M WORKING ON Washington Asparagus Commission
Peter Frazier believes hospitality is a heart-opening experience. His re-imagined hotels prove it.
10 11 86 88
46 MY WORKSPACE
NK Woodworking designs the staircases of your dreams—and then some.
48 GAME CHANGER
When a group of restaurant industry veterans in Seattle decided to take a stand on human rights, +togetherSEATTLE was born.
EXPLORE Editor’s Letter 1889 Online Map of Washington Until Next Time
72 TRAVEL SPOTLIGHT
Enjoy a saltwater dip at Soak on the Sound in Port Townsend.
Washington has some of the finest wilderness in the world. But sometimes you just need a quick dose of the outdoors, and for that we have five great urban trails around the state.
With Gorge views, a ropes course and treehouses, there’s truly something for everyone at Skamania Lodge.
80 TRIP PLANNER
Skagit Valley is more than tulips. It’s hiking and brewery tours and sampling the flavors of Washington’s most bountiful region.
84 NORTHWEST DESTINATION
Joseph, Oregon, combines the wild, wonderful outdoor adventures of Eastern Oregon with a surprisingly sophisticated downtown.
photo by Will Austin (see Home + Design, pg. 28)
6 1889 WASHINGTON’S MAGAZINE
APRIL | MAY 2020
Bellingham BEER WEEK APRIL 17-25 | Recreation Northwest OUTDOOR EXPO MAY 2 Cascadia International Womenâ€™s FILM FESTIVAL APRIL 16-19
Mount Baker Wilderness Area
WILL AUSTIN Photographer Home + Design
MELISSA DALTON Writer Workplace Wonders
JEN SOTOLONGO Writer Trip Planner
WINSTON O’NEIL Photographer Bending the Rules
Although I am now based in the Seattle area, I lived in Tacoma at age 2 when my family relocated from Colorado. Over the last few years, I’ve had the great pleasure of rediscovering The City of Destiny through several photo assignments and have fallen in love. I have amassed quite a list of local restaurants and shops to revisit, along with new friends with a beautiful courtyard space. (pg. 28)
It’s easy to assume that today’s workplace is defined by just a desk and a computer. I thought this was an exciting opportunity to shake up that point of view by exploring a few modern workplaces across the state, which are defined by their industry and sense of place. You’d never guess which one is in an industrial park! (pg. 50)
I visited the Skagit Valley numerous times growing up, but only knew it for the area’s tulip festival. Returning as an adult showed me how special this region is beyond the tulips. I was especially charmed by the dedication to building a local economy, particularly within the brewing industry. I am a huge craft beer fan, so being able to try a handful of brews, with my dog alongside, was a definite perk. (pg. 80)
Moving to the Pacific Northwest at age 7, I’ve grown accustomed to the beauty and breathtaking views this area has to offer. I’ve been able to share stories through the lens of my camera. One of these stories is Briana Randall’s horseback yoga program. The connection between human and horse is a unique experience that is created through exercise and being able to bond with each other. (pg. 64)
8 1889 WASHINGTON’S MAGAZINE
APRIL | MAY 2020
EDITOR Kevin Max
MANAGING EDITOR Sheila G. Miller CREATIVE Allison Bye
DIRECTOR OF SALES
Aaron Opsahl Cindy Miskowiec
SALES ASSISTANT Elijah Aikens BEERVANA COLUMNIST
Melissa Dalton, Gregg Herrington, Lauren Kramer, Richard Porter, Ben Salmon, Jen Sotolongo, Cara Strickland, Corinne Whiting
Will Austin, Jackie Dodd, Miranda Estes, Duncan Galvin, Talia Jean Galvin, James Harnois, Dillon Jenkins, Scott Minner, Winston O’Neil, Bill Purcell
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All rights reserved. No part of this publiCation may be reproduCed or transmitted in any form or by any means, eleCtroniCally or meChaniCally, inCluding photoCopy, reCording or any information storage and retrieval system, without the express written permission of Statehood Media. ArtiCles and photographs appearing in 1889 Washington’s Magazine may not be reproduCed in whole or in part without the express written Consent of the publisher. 1889 Washington’s Magazine and Statehood Media are not responsible for the return of unsoliCited materials. The views and opinions expressed in these artiCles are not neCessarily those of 1889 Washington’s Magazine, Statehood Media or its employees, staff or management.
APRIL | MAY 2020
1889 WASHINGTON’S MAGAZINE 9
THIS YEAR, 2020, is when we are going to get our steps in every day, with travel being no excuse. Our adventure piece about urban trails on pg. 74 is a useful way to get out on trails right in your town or when you’re visiting another town in Washington. We profile the best urban trails in Bellingham, Seattle, Tacoma, Wenatchee and Spokane, plus twelve more in a sidebar. If you travel the Pacific Northwest like me, this is a great reference. Forty years ago this May, televisions across America captured the volcanic eruption of Mount St. Helens. People were terrified, people were killed and America had its most destructive volcanic event in history. On pg. 58, managing editor Sheila G. Miller recounts the event that startled the world and left an indelible impression on her, too. Our Trip Planner takes us into the heart of Skagit Valley. Perhaps the most bountiful region of the state, Skagit Valley is home to farmers, fishermen and fisherwomen, charming inns, bistros, artisan bread and craft beer. The views of the Salish Sea ain’t bad, either (pg. 80). It was nice that we just saw the next women’s Olympic Marathon team qualify in Atlanta at the end of February. For Sister Madonna Buder, the Iron Nun, things never really slowed down. At age 89, the tunic-ed triathlete from Spokane has been participating in Ironman and other triathlons for decades. Check out her workout and inspiration on pg. 34. On the Home+Design front, we look at two classic yet modern courtyards in the Puget Sound. Two owners decide to get at what’s nagging them and put the final touches on their homes with courtyards they can relax in. One of the coolest articles is a short about Pickford Cinema in Bellingham, which hosts a series called Cinema Thyme— movie-goers receive timely small bites of house-made dishes related to the feature film. (pg. 22) I laughed out loud when reading our Cocktail Card, a recipe called the Gin Griffey Juniper, and I know nothing about
10 1889 WASHINGTON’S MAGAZINE
APRIL | MAY 2020
FROM THE EDITOR
baseball and less about gin (pg. 20). The sybarite in me wants to mix up a couple of these and abscond to Port Townsend’s Soak on the Sound (pg. 72), for a private saltwater bath a block off Port Townsend Bay.
1889 ONLINE More ways to connect with your favorite Washington content www.1889mag.com | #1889washington | @1889washington
GEAR UP Show off your state pride with 1889 T-shirts, hoodies, tote bags and more from our online shop. www.1889mag.com/shop
washington: in focus Have a photo that captures your Washington experience? Share it with us by filling out the Washington: In Focus form on our website. If chosen, you’ll be published here. www.1889mag.com/in-focus photo by Jo Llewelyn Aboard the ferry from Winslow to Seattle.
#1889WASHINGTON What does your Washington look like? Connect with us on social media by tagging your photos with #1889washington.
APRIL | MAY 2020
1889 WASHINGTON’S MAGAZINE 11
SAY WA? 14 FOOD + DRINK 20 FARM TO TABLE 24 HOME + DESIGN 28 MIND + BODY 34
pg. 23 Saffron, in Walla Walla, melds flavors from all over with peaceful ambience.
Visit Walla Walla
ARTIST IN RESIDENCE 36
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Benjamin Lerman/courtesy Vetri
Tidbits & To-dos
calaerk your nda r
ForanSuon Ceramics Maifest You know about Oktoberfest in Leavenworth, but you can also celebrate spring with Maifest. From May 8 to 10, the town once again comes together to celebrate a German tradition—this one centered around the Maipole and planting flowers. The city streets will have a bazaar of local artwork and handcrafted goods, but the main event is on Saturday, when chainsaw carving, music and Maipole dancing take place, plus a parade at noon. ur yo ar k r ma end
3D printing is making inroads everywhere, even in art. This Seattle-based company, started by artist Jacob Foran and architectural designer Phirak Suon, blends fine art and technology with intricately patterned ceramics. From vases to candleholders, these pieces will be a point of pride in your home. www.foransuon.com
Crosscut Festival Get in the know at Seattle University’s Crosscut Festival, April 30 to May 2. The event features three days of conversations with prominent journalists, politicians and others who discuss important issues. This year’s lineup features Judy Woodruff, PBS Newshour’s anchor and managing editor, as well as Starfish Media CEO Soledad O’Brien. You’ll feel smarter as soon as you walk through the doors. www.festival.crosscut.com
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APRIL | MAY 2020
There’s no shortage of coffee options out there, but Seattle-based Onda Origins is trying to do things differently. The roaster is sharing profits with coffee growers and offering a transparent view of how your coffee gets into your cup each morning. If you’re a fan, try the subscription box, which delivers a bag to your door for $20 whenever you want.
camark y len our da r
Art projects in a box, delivered to your door. What more could you ask for? This Whidbey Island-based company curates a new art project for kids each month with enough art supplies in the regular box for two participants (or order the large box for four people to play). Add to that a booklet and step-by-step instructions, and you’re on your way. Bonus: the company donates boxes to nonprofits and groups, including the Washington Corrections Center for Women. www.outsidetheboxcreation.com
Outside The Box Creation
Spring Fair If you just can’t wait for this summer’s State Fair, keep your excitement at bay with the Spring Fair at the state’s fairgrounds in Puyallup. From April 16 to 19, the Spring Fair has pig racing, rides and livestock exhibits—along with spring events, too. The whole family will find something here. www.thefair.com
APRIL | MAY 2020
1889 WASHINGTON’S MAGAZINE 15
Strength in Sadness
Lemolo’s Swansea is a wonderful world of healing and expertly crafted dream-pop written by Ben Salmon FOR MEAGAN GRANDALL, Swansea Listen on Spotify is more than her third album under the name Lemolo. It’s also the conceptual framework around which said album is built, a “vast place we find ourselves in when we lose someone,” Grandall is quoted as saying on Lemolo’s website. But, she said, Swansea “is not necessarily a sad place. It is where we find strength in remembering how to stand on our own two feet.” For more than a decade, Grandall has stood tall in Seattle’s music scene, putting out three fine albums of glistening, melancholy dream-pop that’s expertly crafted and emotionally generous. In between its lush arrangements and soaring melodies, Swansea—released last October—may be her most personal work yet. “It’s very much about various forms of loss that I’ve experienced over the years,” Grandall said in a recent interview. “I found myself feeling quite alone, and writing these songs helped me find a lot of healing. For me, songwriting almost always does.” Grandall started playing piano at just 3 years old, and by the time she was in high school, she was writing her own songs. She formed Lemolo—which is really just her and an ever-rotating cast of friends and collaborators—after college, released her debut album The Kaleidoscope in 2012, and then followed that up with 2015’s Red Right Return. When it came time to make Swansea, Grandall turned to Seattle-based producer Nathan Yaccino, whose Ballard Baitshop studio is housed in a former sail-making loft in the heart of one of the city’s hippest neighborhoods. Both Yaccino and his cozy workspace helped Grandall feel totally open to being creative and pouring her heart into her recordings. “(Yaccino) really challenged me to step out of my comfort zone in a lot of ways and try new things musically—new tempos, new instruments, new chords and so on,” she said. “He is also a brilliant musician and songwriter, and we spent a lot of time in pre-production reworking my songs and making them stronger and more interesting. Swansea was very much a collaborative effort between the two of us, and what resulted is just as much his as it is mine.” Of course, now that the album is out and traveling from ear to ear, it belongs not only to Grandall and Yaccino, but to the world as well. And that’s the beauty of making music, Grandall said. “One of the most rewarding parts about releasing this record that surprised me has been other people sharing their stories of loss with me, and letting me know how my songs have brought them comfort in different ways,” she said. “The feeling I get from personal encounters like that are often what fuel me to continue sharing my songs.” 16 1889 WASHINGTON’S MAGAZINE
APRIL | MAY 2020
Seattle’s Lemolo has released a third album, Swansea.
everyone needs a beach town
A place to relax, recreate, or contemplate. Ideally with a side of beer-battered cod and a locally brewed pint. Seaside is just such a place. Busting with shops and great places to eat, miles of sandy beaches and a grand promenade to stroll. So why not come and Seaside for yourself?
Jessica Ribera dreamed of professionally dancing, but injuries stymied those hopes interview by Cara Strickland
SEATTLE AREA AUTHOR Jessica Ribera’s recent book, The Almost Dancer, is about her quest to dance professionally—including her time at Pacific Northwest Ballet—and the accident that changed her trajectory. We caught up with her to learn about her story and where she is today. For many, the idea of becoming a ballet dancer is a childhood dream, even an ambition. You came closer than most. Would you share some behind-the-scenes memories of what it was like to dance with Pacific Northwest Ballet? In Amarillo, Texas, where I grew up, the way to learn about the dance world (before Google) was through the occasional PBS special or my precious subscription to DANCE magazine. Around the time I began going to big auditions, one of the Pacific Northwest Ballet prima ballerinas, the beautiful, tall Arianna Lallone, had the cover and main story in the magazine. About five years later, I was one of six students invited to join the company on a brief tour down to Hollywood to dance A Midsummer Night’s Dream in the Hollywood Bowl. We did all our classes on the stage there, and Arianna, who would kindly chat with
Jessica Ribera’s new book is about her ballet career.
me, offered me a spot next to her at the barre. The great joy for me of the opportunity to dance with a world-class ballet company, even in my bottom-tier position, was the up-close view of dancers, teachers and choreographers that had been characters in my childhood dreams. There were often excruciating demands, like long hours and needing to keep injuries secret (on that trip to Hollywood, I was barely healed from a sprained ankle!). But, for the most part, the experience was everything I wanted as an ambitious young dancer. Your career as a dancer ended with injury—what was it like for you to say goodbye to that dream? Following the stage accident that ruined my back for ballet, I primarily lived in denial. It would have been so much healthier if I had been able to say, “My dream was good and
“For a long time, I would go to the ballet, quite rarely, and watch as a failure. Writing helped me to grow into someone new—a well-educated, sharp-eyed observer, one who appreciates so much more than the average theater-goer.” — Jessica Ribera, author 18 1889 WASHINGTON’S MAGAZINE
APRIL | MAY 2020
beautiful, and I almost achieved it. This accident was tragic, and I am devastated. But I’ll choose to be a dancer doing something else.” Instead, I decided that somehow it was all my fault. I sunk into shame and rather than gently taking myself in a new direction, I behaved like I had failed and didn’t deserve to grieve or to use my creativity. I spent a long time trying to get over having ever been a dancer, instead of mourning and healing. What is your relationship to ballet and other types of dance now? I am learning to be a fan, an audience member, a supporter. For a long time, I would go to the ballet, quite rarely, and watch as a failure. Writing helped me to grow into someone new—a well-educated, sharp-eyed observer, one who appreciates so much more than the average theater-goer. My relationship with my body has changed too. I saw my limited, injured body as the thing keeping me from my deep dreams. But, shifting my dreams forward to fit who I am now, to embrace the knowledge, emotion and body I have, has enabled a completely new approach to performing. My favorite dancing to do is with my four wild children in our kitchen to whatever song titles they shout at Alexa. I’m excited to keep growing into new dreams and ambitions, and maybe dancing on stage will be a part of my life again someday.
There are only two seasons in Cannon Beach: summer and the magic season. Guess which one we prefer?
FROM LEFT Dru Bru is a destination for tourists and locals alike. The brewery is known for award-winning pints.
Cocktail Card recipe courtesy of Ben Paris (Seattle)
Gin Griffey Juniper
A Mountain View and a Brew written and photographed by Jackie Dodd
• 2 ounces gin • ¼ ounce seasonal shrub • 1 ounce Meriwether’s Tonic • 4 ounces club soda Serve in a large goblet over ice and garnish with fresh market herbs and fruit. TO MAKE SHRUB Macerate 1 cup of fruit (berries, kiwi, cherries … whatever is fresh!) with 1 cup of sugar and ¼ cup vinegar (cider, rice or champagne). Let sit at least an hour, add 1 cup water and heat until all sugar is dissolved. Strain out the solids, cover, and the mixture is good for months in the fridge. Use in sodas for a bright, spirit-free treat.
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“I BASICALLY STARTED this thing by bootlegging to my friends,” Dru Ernst laughed through the hazy camera of a Skype call, an appointment he kept even as his wife went into labor. Even with the impending arrival of his second child, he took time to talk about his first baby—the Snoqualmie Pass brewery he’s been building for the better part of the past decade, both a destination at the base of a mountain known for its skiing and hiking and a hangout for the local crowd. “Remember that winter when the mountain didn’t get any snow? Yeah, that’s when we opened!” The comment comes across as lighthearted, but the origin story of a brewery nestled into a community known for skiing was a little rocky. With visions of winter sports enthusiasts sipping pints between ski runs dancing in their heads, the team at Dru Bru set a winter opening for the brewery, only to have a winter that never came. What did come, however, were craft beer fans from near, and much less near. A strong and passionate group of brewery fans showed up at the tap room from the day it opened to fill the stools and their pints, proof that this brewery isn’t dependent on weather for its success. Although the German-style and largely session beer (beer with an alcohol content around or below 5 percent), is perfect for a break from the slopes or a reward after a long hike, the beer is also good enough to be a destination on its own. The unpredictable Pacific Northwest weather has proved this to the Dru Bru team. The patrons who frequent the taproom are thought of as “regulars” rather than “locals,” given that several of them drive more than 20 miles for their usual pints and growler fills. When your backyard is a mountain, the idea of local takes on a new color, expanding a bit wider than those taprooms that pull their regular crowd from a walking distance-sized radius. Maybe it’s the mountain water—soft, naturally delicious and free of chlorination—that gives this beer its crisp and delicious flavors, or maybe it’s the talented team of brewers who work at Dru Bru. Either way, it wasn’t long before the awards started stacking up. Within just a few years, the beers coming out of Dru Bru pulled in more than a dozen of the top awards in the Pacific Northwest, a region known for award-winning beer. Even if you can’t make it out to Snoqualmie Pass to sample the goods, two of its most popular brews have made it into cans. Look for Dru Bru Hop Session, a well balanced 4.7 percent IPA, as well as its multiaward-winning Kölsch in cans. If you can’t find Dru Bru, ask your local bottle shop or grocery store to start carrying it. It won’t disappoint.
APRIL | MAY 2020
Discover the unsearchable Discover the forest
Find a trail near you at DiscoverTheForest.org
food + drink
CRAVINGS PIZZA AND BEER The team at Blewett Brewing Company originally learned pizza-making from Delancey in Seattle, and has recently branched out into craft beer as well. What better combination is there? Located in the heart of Leavenworth, this is a great spot for upscale pizza and a variety of beer styles. 911 COMMERCIAL STREET LEAVENWORTH www.blewettbrew.com
DOUGHNUTS Born in Seattle’s Capitol Hill in 2002, Top Pot sought to be an antithesis to the fast food-type doughnut shops its owners had encountered. Using a secret recipe from the 1920s, their goal was to create a place where people could slow down and savor the nostalgia. Now you can find them in twenty-two locations— including a couple in Texas. Daisey James
LOCATIONS IN WESTERN WASHINGTON www.toppotdoughnuts.com
COFFEE Cinema Thyme events combine foodie movies and matching fare.
Cinema Thyme written by Cara Strickland FOR NEARLY A DECADE, the Pickford Cinema has played host to an event series called Cinema Thyme, a collaboration with local restaurant and catering service Ciao Thyme. The cinema and restaurant put their heads together and decide on a movie in which food plays a starring role, then head into the kitchen. The evening begins with sparkling wine and appetizers, before guests adjourn to the theater, where the movie begins. At just the right moment, servers bring dishes to complement the movie—tiny bites to go along with the plotline. After the movie, everyone gathers for a family-style dinner, complete with wine and dessert. If you’re interested, be sure to keep an eye on the Pickford’s website—it usually announces a new event four to six weeks beforehand, and the events, usually four each year, sell out quickly.
80 102ND AVENUE NE BELLEVUE www.thirdculturecoffee.com
“FAST” FOOD Every Monday night, Ruins becomes “McRuins,” offering your favorite fast food treats made with slowfood techniques and high-quality ingredients. From a crunch wrap to a Big Mac and rotating options in between, this weekly event will hit the spot. 825 NORTH MONROE STREET SPOKANE www.facebook.com/ruins.spokane
1318 BAY STREET BELLINGHAM www.pickfordfilmcenter.org
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At Third Culture, you’ll find serious single-origin coffee and exclusive blends as well as beautiful teas and interesting signature drinks—all served in a light-filled, attractive environment that might just help you write that screenplay.
APRIL | MAY 2020
food + drink
BEST PLACES FOR
CHEESE TIETON FARM & CREAMERY
18796 SUMMITVIEW ROAD TIETON www.tietonfarm andcreamery.com
COUGAR GOLD You’ll find a variety of cheeses on offer from Washington State University’s creamery (even sample the ice cream at Ferdinand’s on campus). But perhaps the best-known creamery product is the awardwinning Cougar Gold, which comes in a can. Once you taste this award-winning aged white cheddar, it’s easy to see why it sells out regularly. Eager for more collegiate canned cheeses? Try other flavors, like dill garlic or crimson fire. PULLMAN www.creamery.wsu.edu
BEECHER’S HANDMADE CHEESE Though there are a few cafe locations, nothing beats watching the cheesemaking process at the Pike Place Market location where it all started. Feast on a delicious bowl of macaroni and cheese or take home any number of delicious flavors from this Seattle staple. 1600 PIKE PLACE SEATTLE www.beechershandmade cheese.com
Photos: Visit Walla Walla
You’ll find Tieton’s delicious soft and hard cheeses throughout Washington. For a more personal experience, you can meet some of the makers at the Yakima Farmers Market, or go on a farm tour in the spring or fall.
CLOCKWISE FROM TOP The intimate dining room is the backdrop for delicious meals. The restaurant serves food influenced by the owners’ travels. Saffron has been a James Beard Award Best Chef Northwest semifinalist six times.
Saffron written by Cara Strickland KNOWN FOR PROVIDING a delicious oasis in the middle of Walla Walla, Saffron is a feast for all the senses. The dining room is intimate and the food draws inspiration from Walla Walla as well as Spain, Turkey and Italy. Chris and Island Ainsworth, who own Saffron, say their menu is inspired by their travels and the people they meet. Whenever possible, they use local ingredients and make everything they can from scratch. Even the drinks are a combination of local and Mediterranean beers, wine and craft cocktails. It’s the perfect place for a light dinner after a day of wine tasting or a leisurely dining experience to celebrate a special occasion. Need more proof? Saffron was a semifinalist in the Best Chef Northwest category of the James Beard Awards from 2009 to 2014. WALLA WALLA www.saffronmediterraneankitchen.com
APRIL | MAY 2020
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farm to table
Farm to Table
Almighty Asparagus Launch into the growing season with spears worthy of cheers written by Corinne Whiting ASPARAGUS, WE’VE LEARNED, is anything but dull. The spring vegetable has separate genders—meaning there are both male and female plants, plus they are essentially edible lilies that are related to garlic, onions and leeks. Asparagus has been cultivated worldwide for more than 2,500 years. For these reasons and more, Alan Schreiber, executive director of the Washington Asparagus Commission and owner of Schreiber & Sons Farms, is fascinated by the vegetable. Executive chef Dre Neeley of Vashon Island’s Gravy said there’s another reason to celebrate. “I love cooking asparagus because it’s the first sign of spring!”
Washington is the United States’ largest asparagus producer.
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FROM TOP Asparagus comes in green, purple and white varieties. Alan Schreiber discusses asparagus during a farm tour.
During harvest, asparagus can grow as rapidly as 9 inches per day. “If you visit after two days have passed,” said Schreiber, “everything that was underground is now above.” Asparagus can be a good source of folate, glutathione, vitamin A and vitamin C, and it can be found in three different colors—green, purple and white, which Schreiber said is still a bit of an experiment. He described purple as being milder, a bit sweeter and not having as much of a “grassy” taste, while white is even more mild. Schreiber prefers green. Washington is the country’s largest grower of asparagus, and there are about eighty asparagus farmers within a 100mile radius of the Tri-Cities. Schreiber Farms is located 16 miles north of Pasco. Washington provides prime growing conditions for the vegetable, thanks to its mineral-rich volcanic soils, plentiful natural water supply, warm, sun-kissed days and cool nights. In 2018, approximately 23.5 million pounds of asparagus were harvested. Schreiber estimates that 80 to 90 percent of the crop is sold and consumed outside of Washington, and about 90 percent of the state’s asparagus is currently conventional versus organic. Schreiber grew up on a Missouri farm that grew corn, soybeans and alfalfa—he’s amazed at the diversity of crops found in his adopted home state. He headed west after receiving his doctorate in entomology and working for the EPA in Washington, D.C., moving here in 1993 to be a professor at Washington State University. In 1998, he established the Agriculture Development Group, Inc., an agriculture research and consulting company, and took over the Washington Asparagus Commission in 2001. In 1990, Washington was producing 100 million pounds of asparagus annually, yet as of eight years ago, that statistic had dwindled to 15 million pounds. Imports had decimated these numbers when the Andean Trade Preference Act was enacted in 1991, eliminating tariffs on several products from four countries, including Peru. In order to recover from this collapse, growers here had to reinvent the asparagus industry. They’ve had success, Schreiber said, thanks to their ability to grow new varieties, develop new planting techniques and use more intensive farm management. Yields in the last six or so years have restored optimism within the industry. When purchasing asparagus, Schreiber said to look for tight bundles with the tips closed. The little spokes on the side—called “bracts”—shouldn’t elongate more than about a quarter-inch, and stalks shouldn’t be trimmed by cutting. “If you snap the stalk instead, it will break off at a point where it becomes woody,” Schreiber explained. Another saying to remember when shopping: “Fat is where it’s at; thin is not in.” Although restaurants often serve thinner stalks (since they buy asparagus by the pound but serve by the number of spears), true experts think the larger spears prove more tender and superior. Consumers can typically find Washington asparagus from the second week of April until late June. At the beginning of the season, Schreiber happily eats asparagus every day. His
farm to table
favorite, basic-yet-delicious recipe is to simply mix balsamic vinegar (and perhaps soy sauce) with garlic in a Ziploc bag, and let the asparagus marinate briefly. Then, fold up four corners of an “aluminum boat,” put the spears inside, pour a little marinade on top, and cook everything on the grill to al dente. “The marketplace is not set up to sell asparagus by variety,” Schreiber said. Consumers should be on the lookout for different colors available at various stores. Curious folks can also try all varieties at the Asparagus Fest & Brews, held May 9 at Middleton Six Sons Farms just outside of Pasco. Guests tour the fields in wagons and wander between booths and food trucks, where each vendor sells on-theme items, from asparagus ice cream to deep-fried and pickled versions of the vegetable. Visitors also learn whimsical trivia—for example, a pyramid-shaped asparagus seed grows into a crown in the first year. This “alien-looking thing” might weigh only 2 ounces in the first year, but by year fifteen, it can weigh 100-plus pounds, most of it underground. Like many things in life, it seems, there’s a lot more to the mighty asparagus plant than what initially meets the eye. APRIL | MAY 2020
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farm to table
Roasted Garlic Cheesy Asparagus Lazy Susan / SEATTLE Suzana Olmos SERVES 4-6 • 1 pound asparagus • 3 cloves minced garlic • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese • ¼ cup queso cheese • 3 tablespoons olive oil • ¾ teaspoon salt • ¼ teaspoon pepper
Roasted Garlic Cheesy Asparagus from Seattle’s Lazy Susan.
The Point of the Spear Black Garlic Romesco & Roasted Asparagus
an even roast—use raw almonds with skins on. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees, then line a baking sheet with parchment paper. On the prepared sheet, toss the bell and cherry peppers with 1 tablespoon of the oil. Roast, skin-side up, for 25 minutes or until the peppers begin to brown. Place in a bowl and wrap with plastic wrap so it’s airtight. Peel the charred skin from the peppers and reserve. In a blender, purée the peppers with the remaining ingredients until smooth. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
Fisherman’s Restaurant & Bar / SEATTLE Nick Novello SERVES 4 FOR ROMESCO SAUCE • 1 ancho pepper, hydrated and chopped • 2 red bell peppers, halved and seeded • 1 hot cherry pepper • ¼ cup olive oil • 1 plum tomato, cut into chunks • ¼ cup roasted blanched almonds • 1½ black garlic cloves, peeled • ¼ teaspoon smoked paprika • ⅛ teaspoon ground cumin • 3 tablespoons crunchy bread, coarsely chopped • 2 teaspoons sherry vinegar
FOR ASPARAGUS Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Toss the asparagus and green onions with the oil and place on a baking sheet. Season with salt and pepper. Roast for 12 minutes or until the vegetables are tender, turning them halfway through cooking.
FOR ASPARAGUS • 1½ pounds asparagus, trimmed • 1 bunch green onions, trimmed • 1 tablespoon olive oil FOR ROMESCO SAUCE Roast almonds separately to ensure
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TO SERVE Swoosh the romesco sauce on the plate, then add asparagus and blistered cherry tomatoes and crispy leeks if you want. Serve with remaining sauce for dipping.
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Preheat oven to 425 degrees, and lightly grease a baking sheet with olive oil. Arrange asparagus on the baking sheet. In a small bowl, mix the olive oil, minced garlic and salt and pepper. Stir and drizzle over asparagus. Bake 15 minutes or until just beginning to get tender, then remove from oven and top with mozzarella and queso cheese. Return to oven and broil until cheese melts and becomes golden.
Asparagus-Ricotta Tart Gravy / VASHON ISLAND Dre Neeley SERVES 6 • Frozen puff pastry • 1 egg, beaten • 1 pound asparagus, trimmed • ½ cup whole milk ricotta • Lemon zest • 4 teaspoons olive oil • Kosher salt and pepper • Italian parsley and fresh tarragon, rough chopped Preheat oven to 400 degrees, and roll out pastry dough. Chill the dough as you prepare the filling. Break stems from the asparagus, leaving three-quarters of the stalks. Beat the egg, then divide it in half. In food processor, add the asparagus bottoms, one of the beaten egg halves, ricotta, lemon zest, oil and salt and pepper. Pour the filling into the tart shell and arrange asparagus on top, sprinkling with herbs. Use some of the remaining egg to brush on top of the tart. Bake until the tart is set, about 25 minutes. Let rest, then serve warm with a green salad.
Just 12 miles east of Seattle!
home + design
Captivating Courtyards There’s a romantic simplicity to the classic courtyard—two Puget Sound homeowners give us a tour of their modern renditions written by Melissa Dalton 28 1889 WASHINGTON’S MAGAZINE
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home + design
A Tacoma courtyard was transformed with a sauna, water feature and firepit.
Tacoma: A Mid-century Courtyard Gets a New Life FOR EIGHTEEN YEARS, Audry Kahlstrom and her husband, Nick, tried to make the courtyard at their Mid-century home in North Tacoma work. The couple bought the house in 1999, and the 1950 charmer was originally designed by architect Mary Lund Davis. “When people who know architecture come in here, they’re like, ‘Oh you don’t want to change anything,’ because we have some original doors, and handles and lights,” Kahlstrom said. “But then it comes to a point where certain things just aren’t working anymore.” Such was the case with the home’s courtyard— surrounded by glass on three sides, it gave the house that sought-after indoor-outdoor flow. Dying trees, however, blocked the sunlight and created the perfect conditions for mold and algae to grow across the coarse surface of the original sandstone pavers. Regular attempts at pressure washing didn’t do much. “We would go out there and try to use it,” Kahlstrom said, “even though everything was overgrown and kind of moldy and not really very inviting.” By 2017, the couple was ready for a change, so they contacted local landscape designer Becca Reikow, owner of Reikow Landscape Design, after seeing her complete a project down the block on a similar vintage home. “We wanted to retain that 1950s architecture, but update it and make it useful,”
“When people who know architecture come in here, they’re like, ‘Oh you don’t want to change anything,’ because we have some original doors, and handles and lights. But then it comes to a point where certain things just aren’t working anymore.” Will Austin
— Audry Kahlstrom, homeowner
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home + design
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the Kahlstroms can sweat it out on even the coldest, grayest days. Now no matter the season, the backyard beckons, whether for a quick post-work sauna session, or just to pause inside the house and appreciate how the entire scene is lit up at night, looking serene and peaceful, the water feature singing. “It’s my favorite spot in the whole house now,” Kahlstrom said. “I feel like I’m at a fancy spa.”
Seattle: A Sunken Courtyard for Easy Entertaining When Bridget Rodden first toured her house in the Laurelhurst neighborhood in Seattle, she liked how the traditional shingled exterior contained an open and contemporary layout, with sliding glass doors in the kitchen and dining room that led onto a rear deck. The yard beyond that, however, was another matter. The entire lot had more than 40 feet of grade change, with no real rhyme or reason to the slope and a lot of dirt. “The house is all clean lines and very modern, but the yard was the antithesis of the inside of the house,” Rodden said. “So, when we bought it, we knew we’d have to redo the yard.” Cue the architecture and landscape design firm Wittman Estes, headed by architect Matt Wittman and landscape designer Jody Estes.
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Kahlstrom said. Reikow encouraged the couple to dream even bigger. “I always have my clients make a wish list of all their desires for their yard,” Reikow said. The Kahlstroms asked for a more low-maintenance courtyard where they could relax in private, with a fire pit, water feature and sauna. Capturing the side view to Commencement Bay would be a bonus. Working with Island Rock & Water for the installation, Reikow delivered all of it. Now, a concrete retaining wall sits under cedar panels, the top inset with beaded glass. The glass keeps the fence from feeling too imposing and nods to the home’s historic era, while the wood and concrete tones meld nicely with the “retro-green color” of the house’s siding. A gas fire pit, its exterior covered in the salvaged sandstone, sits at the upper level where it’s sheltered from the wind by the house. A water feature fabricated from steel and dotted with plants runs from the fire pit, cascading down to a streamlined seating area. “I really like how there are different ‘rooms,’” Reikow said. “But the water feature connects both of them.” A Dutch door at the side access enables the couple to keep dogs and kids inside the yard, yet the top can be opened to appreciate water views. The pièce de résistance is the custom sauna built by Reikow’s woodworker husband, neatly tucked around the corner so
FROM LEFT A Dutch door captures a view of Commencement Bay. A sauna brings the spa home.
home + design
FROM TOP This Seattle home’s courtyard features a modern aesthetic. The landscaping requires little upkeep.
When Rodden found the firm’s portfolio online, she was drawn to its clean-lined, modern aesthetic and thought it would mesh well with the house. The firm’s design, executed by contractor Terrain Build, does just that. “The main vision for the project was a series of interconnected outdoor terraces that are all woven together,” Wittman said. This starts at the front sidewalk. From there, steel and concrete steps with wide landings rise to the front door, the path accented by a custom steel mailbox and house number display, as well as 3-foot-tall steel planters brimming with grasses. Around back, the focal point is a sunken courtyard set into the hillside, framed by a carbon-steel retaining wall with a rich natural patina and a hardwood privacy screen. Ipe and steel steps then climb the rise from there, in order to link the courtyard to a more secluded upper area with a hammock, which has views of Lake Washington. “They wanted a place where they could gather with friends,” Estes said, “and also something that could be more private and just one person would use.” The designers maintained a tight materials palette of steel, concrete and wood, which keeps the look cohesive throughout the
property, and “felt modern, but also very warm and inviting,” Wittman said. They juxtaposed these with lush, textural plantings that have the occasional pop of color, like golden Japanese forest grass and orange-hued vine maple, and which appeal year-round. “Even when the leaves are brown, it still looks good,” Estes said. Rodden also likes that the landscape only requires light pruning, little water, and is not so precious that the family dog can’t run through. For the courtyard setup, a low-slung, cantilevered Ipe bench wraps around a custom fire pit. The designers opted for cushions from local fabricator La Fabrique, and cleverly varied the seat depths to provide a variety of seating options. Really, it’s big enough to accommodate at least a dozen people. “It’s a very social garden,” Wittman said. “They wanted the landscape to be lived in.” Rodden finds that easy to do, whether hosting a dinner party with friends and enjoying cocktails by the fire, or having a Saturday afternoon lie-down with a good book. “It’s a great place to sit out and read,” Rodden said. “It’s very quiet. There’s a great feeling of being outside, but in a private space in the middle of the city.”
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home + design
A small yard can still be very functional.
DIY: Design Tips For Small Yards IF YOU HAVE a small yard, don’t despair—petite spaces aren’t as limiting as they might seem. In fact, according to landscape designer Becca Reikow, “The possibilities are endless.” The key is to create layers without overwhelming a small plot or causing visual clutter. USE VERTICAL SPACE: Don’t get stuck at ground level—encourage the eye to sweep up. “I’ve designed some courtyards where we have a vertical water feature, like a weeping wall,” Reikow said. Espaliered plants or climbing varietals are also a good way to direct the eye to the vertical plane. SELECT MATERIALS WISELY: “Choose materials that are space savers,” Reikow said. “I use a lot of steel because it’s only a quarter-of-an-inch thick.” For instance, if Reikow had lined the water feature in the Kahlstroms’ garden with a thicker material, it would have thrown off the proportions and made the walkway too narrow. ELEVATION IS GOOD: Change the height of the ground to fashion different “rooms.” This creates variation and separation in the landscape. Also, the height difference 32 1889 WASHINGTON’S MAGAZINE
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doesn’t need to be dramatic—just a step or two can do the trick. Maintain clear sightlines between the areas, and they’ll still feel connected and enable people to talk to each other from different points in the landscape. “Elevation can be your best friend,” Reikow said. BORROW GOOD VIEWS: Perhaps there’s a lovely tree just on the other side of the fence line, or a spectacular water view in the distance, like with the Kahlstroms’ property. Frame the view to extend the eye out of the smaller perimeter, just like Reikow did with the Dutch door that offers a “peek-a-boo view” of the bay. THINK DOUBLE-DUTY: Hardscape features that are designed to perform two or more functions, like a retaining wall that can double as a bench seat for meals, will make a small space feel much bigger.
home + design
Kick Back and Relax Make your outdoor space inviting with these pretty finds
Small balconies can be comfortable and stylish, thanks to the Crest Swivel Chair from Room and Board. The petite upholstered seat is big enough for a cozy lounge session, swivels 360 degrees, and comes in a veritable rainbow of fabrics and colors. www.roomandboard.com
Combining teak table elements with a powder-coated aluminum frame and thick cushions, the Gloster Grid Sectional is really the best of all worlds. Is it a couch? A daybed? A little slice of heaven? Sit back and decide for yourself. www.summerhousepatio.com
Tired of store-bought fire pits that didn’t last longer than one season, the founders of the Portland-based Stahl Firepit built their own. When it became a hit with friends and family, their company was born. Try the Stahl X Firepit, composed of four interlocking pieces of durable A36 hot-rolled steel for an artful addition to summer night hangs. www.stahlfirepit.com
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mind + body
The Iron Nun
At age 89, Spokane’s Sister Madonna Buder is still competing written by Sheila G. Miller WHAT DID YOU do this weekend? Maybe a hike, a little jog? A ski day at the mountain? Spokane’s Sister Madonna Buder probably has you beat. The 89-year-old, affectionately known as The Iron Nun, didn’t start running until she was in her late 40s, but she’s been knocking out triathlons, Iron Mans and marathons ever since. It was in 1978, in Spokane, that a priest introduced her to running. Sister Madonna was always active and athletic. As a child, she was a champion horseback rider— “but I was never just going out there and running for no good reason,” she said. “(The priest) said it harmonized mind, body and soul, and that did appeal to me because I consider myself a complete person, not fragmented,” she said. “I was just a natural, and I already had what running calls for—energy.” Sister Madonna grew up in St. Louis and entered the Sisters of the Good Shepherd when she was 23. As a member of the semi-cloistered community, she worked in eight states before transferring to the Sisters For Christian Community, which allowed her to develop her own ministries. She works as a volunteer at the local jail and the police department. “Spokane was so inviting to me, especially after being stuck in all that traffic in New York,” she said. “I had gone from San Francisco to New Orleans to New York, and then clear across the country to Spokane. It was such a relief. What city do you have anywhere with natural beauty running through a major part of the downtown area? And that’s what we have with the Spokane Falls.” Her first race was Bloomsday, an 8.2-mile race and grand tradition in Spokane, and then she set her sights on the Boston Marathon, which she completed at age 52, just four years after she went for her first run. She ran it again in 2008, at the age of 78. No wonder she’s a local celebrity around Spokane and beyond. In 1983, a friend approached Sister Madonna about participating in an Ironman. “I didn’t even own a bike at the time,” she said. A benefactor picked one up for her in a police sale, 34 1889 WASHINGTON’S MAGAZINE
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mind + body
Sister Madonna Buder at the end of the swim portion of the Ironman World Championships in Kona in 2014.
though it was a ten-speed man’s bike and was too tall for her. She had never swam the Ironman distance (2.4 miles) and was nervous about getting battered by competitors’ limbs. “The more he told me about it, and the more I tried to reject it, it just hung in there,” she said. “There was a half Ironman in Spokane, so I thought I’d just try it out.” She didn’t know how to properly shift her bike and there was a strong headwind—she spent the final 25 miles of the bike portion in high gear. “I was wasted by the time it came to the transition. I had to get massaged and worked on before I could get my legs moving to run 13 miles.” Still, once she’d tried it, she was hooked. “After awhile, it was just like routine. It was just another walk in the park,” she said. To date, Sister Madonna has competed in more than 377 triathlons around the world, including forty-five Ironmans. She holds age-group records for Ironman events and has earned various honors, from Grandmaster Triathlete of the Year to the Iron Spirit Award. Back in 2005, the Hawaiian Ironman in Kona had to create a new age group (75-79) just for her. These days, Sister Madonna is keeping her triathlons in the sprint category. She has no “average” routine, because of the changing weather. But when the weather is what she calls normal, she gets outside first thing. “I like to jumpstart my day by going to Mass,” she said. “I would run there and back and then I run from church to the Y to swim.” She prefers to swim in lakes and other open water, but in the winter she settles for the pool. She also enjoys the rowing machine—as a cooldown. After she swims she spends about 20 minutes on the rower to help dry her hair. Last year, Sister Madonna was sidelined with some health issues—but she got tired of waiting for them to heal and did three triathlons, her last in October in Palm Beach, Florida. She expects to race again this year, though her schedule is busy because of a ninetieth birthday bash she’s throwing. To celebrate her birthday, Sister Madonna is working with a team to have a souvenir sale of her athletic attire—she’ll donate the proceeds to three of her favorite local charities. The T-shirts alone number more than 200. “When I get these crazy ideas I wonder, ‘Where do these come from?’” she said, laughing. “But I figure all right, if it’s the Holy Spirit I better cooperate.” APRIL | MAY 2020
Sister Madonna Buder Catholic Nun, Triathlete Age: 89 Born: St. Louis, Missouri Residence: Spokane
WORKOUT Generally, Sister Madonna runs to Mass each day, then swims at the YMCA and rows on the rowing machine before running home.
NUTRITION At 89, Sister Madonna is missing some teeth, so there are lots of foods she can no longer tolerate. However, she still loves fresh fruits and vegetables, as long as they’re not too crunchy. She also eats lots of Clif Bars (also one of her longtime sponsors). And to avoid deficiencies in her diet, she has devised a “cure all”—every day she cuts up raw garlic cloves, then places the garlic on spoons full of peanut butter. After each spoonful, she eats a few bites of banana.
INSPIRATION “What keeps me going is to utilize the gifts given me for God’s greater honor and glory, and seemingly to inspire others to remain active.”
EVENTS Sister Madonna’s Birthday • July 24, 4:30-6:30 p.m. • Trinity School Gymnasium, Spokane • Silent and live auction
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artist in residence
Fire in the Foggy Woods
The Pilchuck Glass School has transformed the art world, and keeps innovating to help artists written by Richard Porter
THE PILCHUCK GLASS SCHOOL in Stanwood is built on fire in the foggy woods. The rural arts institution proves that the pursuit of fine glasswork can bring talented people together from around the world. “Pilchuck has been an international experiment almost from day one,” said Ben Wright, artistic director for PGS. “Italo Scanga, an Italian artist, was the first artist in residence at Pilchuck and was a huge influence on Dale Chihuly and the early days of the school.” In the American studio glass movement, Pilchuck has grown from a small Northwest entity to a well-known institution respected the world over. The campus is remarkable. It’s on a wooded 54 acres set in a 15,000-acre tree farm on the border of Skagit and Snohomish counties. Curriculum is taught and demonstrated in handson workshops. The school of sixty buildings is a residency for artists, an incubator where students forge new skills in a natural environment. 36 1889 WASHINGTONS’S MAGAZINE APRIL | MAY
“Pichuck invites over 500 participants to campus each summer,” said Pollyanna Yokokawa, the school’s marketing director. “In 2019, we were honored to have students from more than twenty-four different countries.”
Origins of a Movement Pilchuck Glass School was started in 1971 by a group of free-spirited glass artists. The countercultural, communal vibe of Pilchuck instinctively drew people who were curious about experimental living. This patch of alpine wilderness was dedicated to the pursuit of craft education. Chief among the backwoods pioneers was Dale Chihuly, the project’s founder. Chihuly is today well known in global art circles—in the early 1970s, he was a dreamer camping out in the mud with fellow dreamers. The artists who flocked to the outskirts of Stanwood wanted to revolutionize glass as an art form, to elevate it from basic
Photos: Courtesy of Pilchuck Glass School
Pilchuck Glass School’s hot shop and flat shop illuminated during a summer evening at the Stanwood campus.
“Glassmaking is, at its core, a team sport. The sense of collaboration and teamwork permeates the glass process.” — Christopher R. Taylor, Pilchuck Glass School executive director function to high aesthetic. At the time, glass as a viable art medium was a novel idea. Until that point, glass had been viewed as only having industrial applications. The Pilchuck founders responded to nature with their art. They pitched tents in the woods and started building hot shops and treehouses. They used a $2,000 grant from the Union of Independent Colleges of Art for an experimental summer glass workshop. Local arts patrons Anne Gould Hauberg and John H. Hauberg personally supported the school’s expenses during the first year, and later fully underwrote the school. Like glass itself, sometimes a dream is nebulous until it gets worked into something serviceable. “I am continually reminded that an idea, no matter how remote the chances of success, can be a powerful thing,” said John H. Landon, an artist and founding participant in Pilchuck’s early years. Amazingly, the remote collection of DIY buildings became, over the decades, a venerated institution in the global arts scene. It restructured its programs, hired professional and seasonal staff and set up internship programs. The school created a board of trustees, built a second hot shop and invested in equipment. Glass workers across the world took notice as Pilchuck assumed its final form as an esteemed destination for talented artists.
The Glass School Today Pilchuck will celebrate its fiftieth anniversary in 2021. The original open-air hot shop still exists and is used regularly. Teachers and pupils gather under the shed-like roof to hone their craft. With its slanted roof made of wood, the hot shop is iconic and symbolic of the Pilchuck Glass School itself. A nearby studio houses a neon bending shop. Neon bending is a dying art, as neon signs have largely disappeared from modern city skylines. Here is a last bastion of the craft, preserving knowledge of the handiwork for future generations. The school’s Emerging Artist in Residence program, funded by the National Endowment for the Arts and Chihuly Garden LEARN MORE
FROM TOP 2019 Emerging Artist in Residence Bri Chesler examines work and installation components completed during her residency. Taking inspiration from the natural settings of the campus, a flameworking student sculpts a bird in borosilicate glass.
and Glass, is designed to hone the skills of younger, emerging artists. Each year, artists are selected from a worldwide pool of applicants. The process is competitive. Winners are awarded a $1,000 stipend and access to studios for up to two months during fall. Senior artists actively mentor new students, establishing a lineage between past and present. There’s an intentional continuity of the founders’ original vision, and a preservation of accumulated skills, all for the betterment of the collective. “Glassmaking is, at its core, a team sport,” said Christopher R. Taylor, the school’s executive director. “The sense of collaboration and teamwork permeates the glass process.” This is perhaps the most striking aspect of the Pilchuck Glass School—it favors cooperation over competition. To visit is to get a sense that the international students of the tree farm are trying to create better art and a better world together in an open-source community. It starts here, in a quiet Pacific Northwest forest.
Once each year, the Pilchuck Glass School offers public access to its campus with popular spring tours. This year, spring tours will be held May 20 to 24 and will feature artists James Anderegg, Megan Stelljes and Conor McClellan. For tickets, go to www.pilchuck.org/springtours.
APRIL | MAY 2020
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STARTUP 40 WHAT’S GOING UP 42 WHAT I’M WORKING ON 44 MY WORKSPACE 46 GAME CHANGER 48
pg. 46 NK Woodworking creates the staircase of your dreams.
Our Summer Lineup GUNS & ROSES WILCO VAMPIRE WEEKEND THE FLAMING LIPS MILKY CHANCE SHERYL CROW STRING CHEESE INCIDENT BRANDI CARLILE WEEN THE AVETT BROTHERS TRAIN THE DECEMBERISTS TEGAN AND SARA TRAMPLED BY TURTLES TYLER CHILDERS TWIDDLE MOE. AARON WATSON BEN HARPER & THE INNOCENT CRIMINALS DAVID SEDARIS GRACE POTTER G. LOVE & SPECIAL SAUCE TENNIS OF MONTREAL FRUITION THE FAB FOUR SNBRN DIRTWIRE PORTLAND CELLO PROJECT KING GIZZARD AND THE LIZARD WIZARD TREVOR NOAH LOUD AND CLEAR TOUR EVE 6 TECH N9NE AZIZI GIBSON STURGILL SIMPSON THE CALIFORNIA HONEYDROPS THE CACTUS BLOSSOMS RISING APPALACHIA EUROPE THE WAILERS HOME FREE LE BUTCHERETTES NIGHT MOVES CITIZEN COPE COHEED AND CAMBRIA 311 REBELUTION THE WAITING: TOM PETTY TRIBUTE DAVID BROMBERG QUINTET LOUIS THE CHILD STICK FIGURE PRIMUS THE NATIONAL LEFTOVER SALMON LIQUID STRANGER SPAFFORD MINISTR HAYES CARLL TINSLEY ELLIS FOR KING & COUNTRY BUILT TO SPILL ANDERS OSBRONE & JACKIE GREENE JOE RUSSO’S ALMOST DEAD CAAMP THE DEAD SOUTH
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Printing Ideas With Seattle’s Glowforge 3D laser printers, if you can dream it, you can make it written by Sheila G. Miller
WHAT CAN YOU imagine? Thanks to Seattle’s Glowforge, you can make it with a few presses of a button. Dan Shapiro co-founded Glowforge in 2014 with the goal of bringing what the company calls 3D laser printers to the people. Today, the company has two levels of printer, both of which use a beam of light the thickness of a human hair to cut and carve and sculpt designs onto a variety of materials, from glass to leather. “I looked at all the opportunities I was able to have, and I realized so much of that comes from being able to make things, and from knowing that the tools of creation were part of my birthright,” Shapiro said. “I wanted that for everybody. I wanted that for my kids, for people who had ideas and dreams and hobbies.” Shapiro grew up in Portland and, in high school, managed OMSI’s holography lab. As a student at Harvey Mudd College,
he built laser light shows and sold them on the internet. After a stint at Microsoft, he worked on a variety of startups, from one that created a cell phone for teenagers to a comparison shopping app. When his twins were 4, he decided to create a board game called Robot Turtles, which teaches programming basics to the littlest future software designers. While prototyping a deluxe version of Robot Turtles, Shapiro came across a 1970s technology that would change the
The Glowforge community has created endless products with the printer.
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trajectory of his career. The CNC, a computer numerical control laser, allows users to cut and engrave designs with precision. “One thing led to another and I had this $11,000 carbon dioxide laser in my garage,” he said. “It was wonderful and terrible. I spent days getting it to work and to learn to do anything that looked useful. But there was this magic moment after all the fussing and greasing the gears and hours adjusting its optics.” He pushed the button, and made something beautiful and all his own. Shapiro showed it to friends, and after their initial skepticism, they were just as hooked. “I started thinking about the arc of my adult life, which was that I was given the opportunity to create things and to bring things into the world,” he said, referring to his engineering degree and the many advantages his parents and teachers gave him. “I was set up with an amazing education, a love of learning and the fearlessness to try stuff.” What Shapiro wanted, he realized, was to provide the tools of creation to others. “If I could create a product to let anybody have access to the means of creation, I’d have a real chance to change the world,” he said. It wasn’t long before he was introduced to his co-founder, Mark Gosselin, who had just sold a startup for $112 million and also just finished building a laser cutter in his garage. Shapiro realized Glowforge was his future the day his kids approached him about making an iPad on the CNC—“I burst out laughing,” he said. “My kids are growing up with creation as their birthright. The first thing for them was, ‘Why can’t we make it?’ And then their second response is ‘OK, should we buy it?’ instead of having those two things reversed.” At its core, Shapiro wants Glowforge to help people create what they want in their lives instead of going out and buying them. With a Glowforge, you’ll never have to buy off a wedding registry again—you can personalize coasters or glasses, or buy a piece of old tile or stone and turn it into an expensive-looking cheeseboard. The printer is simple. Print something out or draw your design, then capture it with your phone’s camera or as a JPEG or PDF. Using free online software, you upload the image—then, using onboard cameras inside the Glowforge, you place the image where you want it on the material that’s loaded into the Glowforge. Press the single button. Voila. Of course, you can go more in depth—choose whether to cut the pieces or engrave or sculpt. But the printer is designed to be just that easy to use. The average print time is 12 minutes. Shapiro said Glowforge users can be divided into thirds—hobbyists, small home-based business owners, and more traditional companies. About 80 percent of Glowforge printers go into people’s homes. Shapiro thinks of them like personal computers. One swing through Instagram and it’s easy to see that if you can imagine it, you can make it. Pull up #glowforge and see Christmas ornaments, teacher gifts, earrings, puzzles and signs galore, all made on the printers. And there are elaborate projects, too—a 4-foot dollhouse stands in the Glowforge offices,
AT TOP Projects can begin as sketches—then place the material in the printer and begin creating. BOTTOM, FROM LEFT Glowforge co-founders Dan Shapiro and Mark Gosselin.
and the company often references leather bags and luggage sets that can be made with the printers. “You’re not going to make those on your first day, but you absolutely will be creating things you’re proud of,” Shapiro said. An online owners forum has thousands of free designs to help people create their own treasures. Shapiro likes to point to that old HairClub for Men TV ad: He’s not just the president. He’s also a client. That is to say, in his office alone he has a mousepad, wall art, puzzles, a spinning carousel for his whiteboard markers and tons of other products that he’s made himself. Shapiro grew up on “Star Trek,” and he looks at the future of Glowforge through that lens. “I’m excited by the world of the replicator, of people being able to create what they want and need right where they want and need,” he said. “What I want is this for everybody. … Our company vision is a world where anyone can print anything.” APRIL | MAY 2020
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what’s going up?
Spots For Seniors Senior living communities continue cropping up all over Washington
Bellevue’s new Aegis community is slated to open in November.
written by Sheila G. Miller AS OUR SENIOR population continues to grow, so too do the offerings available to help them age gracefully. Seattle’s Olympic Tower at Skyline brings big city living to retirees 62 and up. The tower, designed for independent living, will have one- and two-bedroom homes with open floor plans and floor-to-ceiling windows. The retirement community, in downtown, is slated to feature a cafe and bar, salon and spa, performing arts center and fitness facility. Valet and underground parking round out this luxury operation, expected to open in 2021. Rockwood in Spokane is getting a full redesign and a new name—Rockwood at Whitworth. The complete redevelopment will knock down some of the existing facility and create a new building with memory care and assisted living. The campus is partnering with Whitworth University to offer residents cultural opportunities. The first phase of the redevelopment is expected to be completed in early 2021. And in Bellevue, an Aegis community called Bellevue Overlake is slated to open in November. The facility will sit on Lake Washington just minutes from downtown Bellevue. A greenhouse is expected to be a part of the main entrance, and the facility will offer memory care and respite care.
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Explore DELICIOUS Destinations ⚫ EnjoyOlympicPeninsula.com ⚫ 360-437-0120
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what i’m working on
ABOVE Hotel Leo in Bellingham was revamped from a retirement facility into a hotel and apartment complex. AT RIGHT Peter Frazier has restored two Bellingham hotels.
Two hotels get new life, thanks to renovation with care interview by Lauren Kramer
PETER FRAZIER, CO-OWNER of the Heliotrope Hotel and the Hotel Leo in Bellingham, is an expert at breathing life into old, derelict establishments and making them cool, edgy, fun and contemporary. How did you get into the hotel business and what did you find compelling about hospitality? After a twenty-five-year career in the tech industry my wife, Aimee, and I began creating vacation rentals and found we loved welcoming people to our properties, making them comfortable and giving them great recommendations for things to do. Our love for people, our community and the Pacific Northwest ecosystem ultimately led us to the Heliotrope and the Hotel Leo. You took a gamble on the Heliotrope. What was your vision and how did you come up with the ideas for its reinvention? 44 1889 WASHINGTON’S MAGAZINE
In October 2016, we bought a 1950s roadside motel that was a scourge to the three neighborhoods around it. I knew we could transform it into a boutique hotel and design a place that was cool and comfortable with a sustainable culture. The road to realizing that vision was scary, fun, and hard work, with many good collaborators. To connect our visitors to our community and location, we used Mid-century modern, clean materials and integrated Pacific Northwest elements and icons into the design. Aimee collected river rocks and we created cairns outside each door. I cut, stripped and sanded alder trees, and fashioned coat racks for
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each room. We put in a bike wash station, and built a fire pit and an inviting social lounge where guests could meet and socialize together each evening. The success of the venture has been gratifying, and we hear two things regularly: great design and warm, welcoming staff. What kinds of challenges did the Hotel Leo present? This 1929 building was launched as the grand hotel of Bellingham, but in November 2018 was a retirement residence that needed to close. Aimee and I partnered with Bob Hall to reincarnate the space into fifty apartment units and forty hotel rooms that would become the first downtown hotel in a quarter century. This is an historic building and it was important to us to do this project right. Our team worked tirelessly to save what could be saved and restore what had been hidden. We purchased furnishings, equipment and materials from local businesses and leaned on the talents of regional artists, professionals and craftspeople. When it opened in October 2019 we were confident we’d created an integrated, welcoming hotel where guests and apartment tenants can dine at the restaurant and bar and share the social spaces. From our years in hospitality, we’ve learned that mixing locals and visitors is a powerful social venture and everyone comes out better for it. What has surprised you most on this hospitality journey? With thousands of guests through our vacation rentals and hotels, I can point to very few unpleasant interactions. Each day I look forward to meeting new people, finding out more about them, and learning how we can improve their experience. They say travel is a mind-opening experience—I find hospitality to be a heart-opening experience.
CASINO • SPA • LUXURY ROOMS
Nathie Katzoff started honing his craft at age 16. First, he made knives, then helped builders of straw bale and cob houses, working as a carpenter. At 18, he went to school to learn to build wooden boats and worked as a shipwright for five years. At 23, it was time to merge his interests. “It was just kind of taking large risks and working for free and being bold,” he said.
Katzoff built his first stairway for some friends—he used all the money for materials and worked for free for months, but the joinery staircase won several national awards and put NK Woodworking & Design on the map. “The evolution was somewhat accidental, but it has evolved into something pretty magical,” Katzoff said. “I guess I’m living the dream.”
Stop and Stair NK Woodworking creates gorgeous custom stairways that boggle the mind written by Sheila G. Miller
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“Stairways, to me, especially curved staircases, are inherently beautiful and sculptural in form to begin with,” he said. “They’re very dramatic, and they’re a testament to us as humans and what we’re able to build. Nowadays we’re spoiled, with airplanes and computers and all sorts of crazy inventions that are mind blowing. But before that, humans took a huge amount of pride in the artisanship of what they could create … and stairways are just a real testament to how high level and geometrically sophisticated we can build things out of wood.”
With forty active projects on various timelines and size and scope, Katzoff and his team are always busy, from designing a custom coffee table to a multimillion-dollar stairway. The majority of the projects, including most staircases, are built and assembled in the workshop.
Today, NK Woodworking has about twenty artisans and designers bringing bespoke stairways, custom art and furniture and wooden bathtubs to life. Katzoff and his team are in the process of opening a gallery and showroom in Seattle that will sell furniture and art for those who aren’t interested or able to participate in the custom process. “The world is a beautiful place, and I guess one of my goals is to try, in design and building, to harness that beauty and to continue to have examples of what we can do as humans to make the world more beautiful.”
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FROM LEFT The group puts on regular fundraisers to provide donations to immigrant rights groups. The founding members of +togetherSEATTLE.
Chefs With Heart
+togetherSEATTLE aims to give everyone a seat at the table, immigrants included written by Corinne Whiting JOHN SUNDSTROM, chef and owner of Capitol Hill’s Lark restaurant, recalls receiving a group text in June 2018 from Ericka Burke of Volunteer Park Cafe. In the thread, Burke shared her dismay about breaking news related to border control enforcement and immigrant families being torn apart. Shortly after, the group of likeminded restaurant industry friends convened to discuss the issue, about which they are fiercely passionate. They decided it was imperative to take action, so they formed +togetherSEATTLE, an organization dedicated to raising awareness and funds in support of human rights issues affecting the greater Seattle area. The group knew it wanted to facilitate a charity event—the members decided on a model in which participating businesses donate a percentage of earnings from one designated day. In 2018, the inaugural chefs+togetherSEATTLE event raised more than $60,000 for the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project (NWIRP), the largest legal services organization serving low-income immigrants and refugees in the Pacific Northwest. NWIRP represents those seeking protection from deportation, safety from violence, reunions with loved ones, citizenship, as well as opportunities when it comes to employment and education. On November 14, 2019, during the second chefs+togetherSEATTLE, 124 citywide restaurants, cafes, bars, breweries and 48 1889 WASHINGTON’S MAGAZINE
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sweet shops raised around $52,000 for NWIRP. The third annual event will take place this year, on November 5. “Our work feels timely and important because the current administration’s attacks on immigrants are unrelenting,” said Luanda Arai, immediate past president of NWIRP and volunteer for +togetherSEATTLE. “The impacts of family separation, the systematic denial of asylum seekers’ rights and policies like the Muslim ban will have long-term consequences for communities all over the country.” Sundstrom said the issues hit close to home and feel especially important since many of his most valued and longestterm employees originally hail from Mexico and Central and South America. “They are some of the best people,” he added. He thinks the administration’s actions are shortsighted and misguided. When it comes to immigrants, he said, “Our country is stronger and better with them in it.” Which of the organization’s accomplishments make Arai most proud? “Galvanizing food and beverage companies of all sizes to be openly and vocally supportive of immigrant rights,” she said. “It shows that it’s an issue that cuts across the industry, regardless of demographics.” Though the future is unknown, one thing’s certain—these motivated citizens will continue fighting for causes close to their hearts. “We know there are opportunities to grow our impact and, regardless of what happens in the national elections, we want to expand our community of participating businesses and supporters,” Arai said. Sundstrom agreed. “The groundwork’s there,” he said. “I’m confident that it will keep growing.”
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WORK PLACE WONDERS If you have to spend a chunk of your life working, it might as well be in a beautiful office space written by Melissa Dalton The average person spends 90,000 hours of life at work, so itâ€™s important to get the design right. The best workplaces
respond to their natural setting or neighborhood, and balance employee needs for natural light, comfort and connection. Here are four workplaces in four different industries around the state.
Washington Fruit & Produce transformed an industrial site into a beautiful oasis.
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Photos: Tony Roslund
HDG Architecture put some fun into its renovation of a 1912 building.
AN ARCHITECTURE & DESIGN OFFICE WITH CREATIVE PERKS In 2015, the corner of 3rd and Washington in Spokane was easy enough to overlook—or avoid. The old brick building there had recently hosted Carr’s Corner, a dive bar known for its metal shows and the motto: “What happens at the corner, stays at the corner.” But Josh Hissong and Armando Hurtado, co-founders of HDG Architecture, knew a good thing when they saw the property go up for sale. “As an architecture firm, we know that we can take anything from dilapidated to desirable, so for us it was a no-brainer,” Hissong said. At that point, the 1912 building was “a gutted, nasty, empty shell.” “Any average developer was going to walk up and say, ‘Let’s scrap it,’ and put a drive-through Starbucks here,” Hissong said. “We didn’t want that because it is a neat, old building.” The goal of the renovation was to “let the building be itself,” enhancing its character with tailored additions. Exposed ceiling joists and spruced-up brick reveal the original structure, while more than 2,000 square feet of new insulated glass admits light and connection to the street. The floorplan encourages collaboration, from the open
space for desks, including Hissong’s and Hurtado’s, to the breakout area with laidback seating and a foosball table. The high-quality AstroTurf flooring there climbs the wall to a lofted area with beanbag chairs. Out back, a sketchy parking lot became a shared green space for the firm and the building’s other tenants. It’s hard to say what’s cooler: the felt-lined nap room with an “Occupied” light that lets employees catch some sleep while wrapping deadlines, or the annual firmfunded trip to Europe, wherein the entire twenty-person office leaves work at home for a week and strolls a foreign city together. The building is on a main artery into downtown, with some 36,000 cars driving by a day, Hissong said, which also contributed to its early appeal. Since the overhaul, the façade has a new motto across its inky paint job that reads, “If not now, when?” More businesses have answered the call. Three more buildings on the block have gotten renovations since the firm moved in a few years ago. “It was an area that wasn’t quite cleaned up yet,” Hissong said. “So, we thought we could spark a rebirth of the neighborhood.”
AT RIGHT, FROM TOP HDG exposed ceiling joists to increase the industrial feel. It also turned a parking lot into a shared green space.
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Photos: Kevin Scott
AT LEFT Washington Fruit & Produce’s exterior is meant to evoke a dilapidated barn. BELOW Inside, wood framework and glass walls feel peaceful.
A FRUIT COMPANY THRIVES IN AN INDUSTRIAL SETTING Washington Fruit & Produce has grown apples, pears and cherries in Central Washington since 1916, when Yakima County had more fruit trees than any county in the nation. The grower first shipped them via the Northern Pacific Railroad’s Yakima depot before switching to trucking. Proximity to the highway is what propelled the company to convert 90 acres of flat and featureless floodplain on the edge of town into its base of operations. When it came time to design the company headquarters, architect Brett Baba, a Yakima native and principal of the Seattle firm Graham Baba, didn’t have much to work with. “Looking at it as a place to inhabit, it was bleak,” Baba said of the industrial site, noting its single redeeming quality. “If you look up over the industrial area and over the highway, you see the basalt cliffs,
and they’re extremely beautiful. Other than that, there was no context, or outlook or anything.” To start, the design team devised an L-shape building plan surrounded by earth berms and bordered by a perimeter wall that directs the eye up to the distant cliffs. The building’s exterior references a dilapidated barn—the only aesthetic suggestion offered by the client when he drove Baba to see one at the beginning of the process. “The thing I noticed about it was the skin was peeling off this building, so you could see the old structural elements inside—the knee braces and diagonal wood members and beams and columns,” Baba said. So inspired, the resulting building combines an elegantly exposed wood framework with pronounced crisscrossed columns, reclaimed barnwood siding, and a corrugated
metal roof. Top-to-bottom glass walls enable sightlines from employee desks to a peaceful, secluded courtyard garden, landscaped by Berger Partnership. Inside, soft lighting and acoustics take precedence, with natural light pouring in through the windows or offered via gentle uplighting designed by the firm. Carpeting, warm wood finishes and acoustic panels at the ceiling all buffer highway sounds. After all, Baba’s brief was to shield the office from its industrial surroundings. “They’re concrete boxes, those warehouses. There’s a lot of asphalt. [The client’s] mandate to us was that he wanted something that was completely the opposite of that,” Baba said. “They wanted something much more warm, so it was about creating this quiet, serene environment in this industrial area.”
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“A lot of times when people go wine tasting … they go, have a quick wine tasting, and then move on to the next winery. This is more of an experience. People want to linger.” — Aimée O’Carroll, architect, goCstudio
For eleven years, much of the dayto-day operations at the COR Cellars winery happened out of an old metal shop—everything from the wine’s fermentation, barrel-aging and bottling to the tasting room. The old building was perfectly functional, but fairly bare bones. In 2015, owners Luke Bradford and Meg Gilbert Bradford worked with Seattle firm goCstudio to upgrade. Located on acreage in a Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area in Lyle, the winery has sweeping views—and a lot of strong winds. “They really wanted to create a refuge from the wind, both for the people who are coming to visit and taste wine, and also for when they’re there every day working,” architect Aimée O’Carroll said. The design solution was to organize everyday life at the winery around a protected courtyard. The tasting experience might not be quite as close to the production as before, but neither is it removed. The courtyard is wrapped with three new connected buildings, including a glass-walled tasting room, and exterior walkways are wide enough for forklifts. “This is a working winery, and they didn’t
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want to be too precious about things,” O’Carroll said. Being within a designated scenic area meant any new construction needed to meld with the scenery, so the firm nestled the low-lying building into the hillside to minimize the visual profile. It has an earthy exterior color palette, with ebony-stained tongue-and-groove cedar siding. Nine-foot roof overhangs provide windbreaks and are lined with white-washed hemlock that runs inside as well, where the overall palette is lighter and the décor welcoming. Cozy textiles line a window seat that looks out to Mount Hood, and visitors are encouraged to sit by the fireplace with a sample of the latest vintage, bring a picnic to the courtyard, or join the occasional communal dinner with local restaurant pairings. For the eight employees at the vineyard, the difference from before “couldn’t be more night and day,” Bradford said. Same with tasting visits. “A lot of times when people go wine tasting … they go, have a quick wine tasting, and then move on to the next winery,” O’Carroll said. “This is more of an experience. People want to linger.”
Photos: Bill Purcell
A WINERY IN THE GORGE CELEBRATES THE LOCAL TERROIR
COR Cellars sought to make a cozy tasting room.
BELOW, FROM LEFT The building is designed to blend into its surroundings. The courtyard has walkways that fit forklifts for this working winery. A courtyard seeks to protect from strong wind.
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DATA 1’s façade focuses on a pleasant streetscape.
A specially engineered, stepped rainwater collection system climbs the hill along the sidewalk up Troll Avenue, filtering 160,000 gallons of runoff a year before discharging it to Lake Union.
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Photos: Built Work Photography/Courtesy Weber Thompson
DATA 1’s courtyard area has lots of natural light.
A FREMONT SOFTWARE HUB SAVES THE SALMON Here’s what can happen: Rainwater falls onto the surface of a bridge, runs off the sides, hits the pavement below, and eventually trickles into the Puget Sound via Seattle’s waterways. En route, the water can collect toxins, such as oil from cars and copper from brake pads which, when deposited into bigger bodies of water, have been shown to kill migrating salmon and harm marine life like Orca. In 2015, a five-story commercial office building was being planned for the Fremont neighborhood of Seattle on a site bordered by Troll Avenue under the Aurora Bridge. When the developer learned about the dangers of toxic runoff, especially in this Fremont location, it moved to tackle the problem. “The Fremont cut is along some of the major salmon-spawning routes,” architect Myer Harrell said. “We saw it as a design challenge, but also getting into the engineering of
it, saw it as a challenge to mitigate the stormwater.” Harrell is principal and director of sustainability at Weber Thompson, the architecture and design firm that worked with KPFF Consulting Engineers on the project. Dubbed DATA 1, the LEED Gold-certified building now provides offices for the data visualization software company Tableau on the upper floors and almost 12,000 square feet of retail space at the street level. Tableau’s offices, in an interior buildout led by Gensler, enjoy walls of glass with striking closeup views of the bridge, a sprawling roof deck and an internal courtyard that blurs the boundaries between inside and out. For the exterior, the project team maintained an approachable scale and familiar neighborhood touchstones. It stepped back the upper floors to avoid that “steep canyon wall” effect of a tall, looming
façade. During construction, the developer relocated two popular restaurants from the site, Café Turko and Milstead & Co. Coffee, then brought them back into the completed building. “One of the things that we wanted to do is really focus on the streetscape, and the quality of life at the pedestrian level,” Harrell said. As for what happens to that Aurora Bridge runoff now? A specially engineered, stepped rainwater collection system climbs the hill along the sidewalk up Troll Avenue, filtering 160,000 gallons of runoff a year before discharging it to Lake Union. And DATA 1 is just the first phase of the developer’s work in Fremont. A building across Troll Avenue, called Watershed, will aim for even higher goals, such as pursuit of the Seattle Living Building Pilot program and treatment of more than 300,000 gallons of bridge and street runoff.
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FORTY YEARS ON
When Mount St. Helens erupted in 1980, it changed the Pacific Northwest written by Sheila G. Miller
While cleaning out our bathroom as a little kid growing up in Portland, Oregon, I came across a pile of hospital face masks. It seemed an odd addition to the usual bathroom detritus. But when you grew up in the Pacific Northwest, Mount St. Helens’ 1980 eruption cast a long shadow. It was good to be prepared. At 8:32 a.m. on May 18, 1980, an eruption triggered a massive landslide along the entire north face of the mountain. An 80,000-foot eruption column rose into the atmosphere. The top 1,300 feet of the mountain disappeared, replaced by a crater. Fifty-seven people were killed in the eruption. I was born five days later, and, as a result, I’ve always felt close to the story of Mount St. Helens. This year, on the eve of my fortieth birthday, I thought it was time to learn more about what the eruption truly meant to the region, and what the mountain still holds for us today. AT LEFT Mount St. Helens lost 1,300 feet of height when it erupted in 1980. (photo: Dillon Jenkins)
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n Steve Olson’s book, Eruption: The Untold Story of Mount St. Helens, he describes the scene. “Fifty-seven people died that Sunday morning—a number that would have been ten times higher if the volcano had exploded on a weekday rather than on a Sunday,” he wrote. “The dead were swept off hillsides, crushed by falling trees, carried away by floods, asphyxiated by ash. The bodies of almost half were never found and remain buried around the mountain.”
The mountain had been threatening to blow for almost two months. Four times, according to Olson’s book, the roadblock along Spirit Lake Highway preventing people from entering a possible blast zone had moved, until it finally was formalized about 12 miles from Spirit Lake. But the roadblock didn’t extend to the many logging and Forest Service roads that ran through the woods nearby. There were plenty of people in the blast zone. A 5.1-magnitude earthquake was the first sign of an eruption. The result was the largest landslide in recorded history—200 square miles of trees and all life extinguished. A pumice plain developed below the new crater, and nearby Spirit Lake was overtaken by a cloud of ash combined with pumice and lava blocks, snow, ice, pieces of trees and dirt and rocks. The lake appeared dead—black and bubbling, timber covering the entire surface. The ash cloud traveled around the world, ash landing in almost a dozen states. Layers of ash as much as 3 inches thick settled in places from Eastern Washington to Wyoming. It was considered the most deadly and economically destructive volcanic eruption in U.S. history. Hundreds of homes were destroyed, as well as dozens of bridges and miles of highway. Four billion board feet of timber were damaged or destroyed by the blast, though much of it was salvaged. Crops were destroyed, as were millions of salmon. Between Seattle and Spokane, I-90 was closed for more than a week. Approximately 26,000 miles of Washington’s highways were considered impassable because of ash buildup. 60 1889 WASHINGTON’S MAGAZINE
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The eruption was disruptive, messy and deadly enough. But it caused a chain reaction of other issues, as well. For starters, the flooding. The Toutle River was packed with logs and debris and moved swiftly, carrying away buildings and vehicles. Ultimately, according to Olson, the debris streamed 17 miles down the Toutle’s north fork and became a mud flow. Twenty-seven bridges were destroyed. The mud and gravel eventually came to rest on the floors of the Toutle, Cowlitz and Columbia rivers, Olson wrote. “Channels became so clogged that boats could not leave their moorings and future flooding became inevitable. Oceangoing cargo ships were stranded for weeks in Portland, 50 miles south of the volcano, while dredging crews labored to clear a channel through the Columbia.” By May 24, damages were estimated at $1 billion. In Rob Carson’s Mount St. Helens: The Eruption and Recovery of a Volcano, he called the eruption both a disaster and an opportunity. “It was a window to the earth, transportation through time to an exotic, primordial era,” he wrote. “Mount St. Helens was the most closely watched, most-photographed, and best scientifically documented volcanic eruption in history.” lexa Van Eaton has been a geologist with the USGS since 2015—she started in volcanology in New Zealand, and Mount St. Helens was part of what inspired her to study volcanoes. “Mount St. Helens in 1980 impacted so many people who observed the ash cloud and were affected by the stories of the fifty-seven people who died and many survivors,” Van Eaton said. “It’s a really important part of the Pacific Northwest and American natural history on a scientific level.” Richard Wiatt is a research geologist for the Cascades Volcano Observatory. In 1980, he worked for the U.S. Geological Survey and shifted his career in the wake of the Mount St. Helens eruption. He’s focused his work on Mount St. Helens ever since, and wrote a book, In The Path of Destruction: Eyewitness Chronicles of Mount St. Helens. Wiatt was drawn to collect these people’s stories after his coworker, David Johnston, was killed in the eruption. “That was uncomfortable for quite awhile, partly because what is David’s story? He can’t tell it,” he said. A couple weeks after the eruption, Wiatt read a piece in a Seattle newspaper about two people who had outrun the pyroclastic flow. He thought talking to them might help him understand more of the science
A plume of ash rose from Mount St. Helens, spreading ash over a 22,000-square-mile area. (photo: U.S. Geological Survey)
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CLOCKWISE FROM LEFT Thanks to nature and manmade efforts, the area around Mount St. Helens has largely recovered. Millions of trees were knocked down in the eruption. Recovery took years. Weyerhaeuser, which owned and logged much of the nearby land, lost many vehicles and other property. (photos, clockwise from left: Scott Minner, U.S. Geological Survey, U.S. Geological Survey, U.S. Geological Survey)
“It’s the most active volcano in the Cascades and the most hazardous because of that. It’s been very, very active over the past 4,000 years, so we’re still trying to understand and get a grip on how big some of those earlier eruptions were, what happened. And then, what does that tell us about the nature of future activity?”
of what had happened, so he met them at a bar on a Friday night. While it was a terrible venue to try to conduct an interview, it was a learning experience. “Ten minutes in, I realized it didn’t matter how good a geologist I was, I couldn’t figure out from the 62 1889 WASHINGTON’S MAGAZINE
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kind of field methods we use—I could not know how it pounded down with great authority. In the field I can’t tell if the ash was coming sideways or down. That kind of thing intrigued me, and it would really help us understand something about the processes.” Wiatt sought survivors and others whose accounts revealed more about the science of the eruption. “Usually people who were in an eruption don’t survive. There aren’t survivors,” he said. “The fact that people did survive, seemingly miraculously—they have a story to tell, and they’re telling that story for scores of other people.” Wiatt said some survivors reported icy mud balls falling from the sky, as well as hail. While you traditionally think of a volcanic eruption as bringing searingly hot lava and ash, one witness told Wiatt that first he got rained on. “At first he’s wet and cold, he’s freezing even,” he said. “And then the heat wave comes through and fire, one after another. The latter is what is more expected in a volcano.” Wiatt said the 1980 eruption was unusual. “The mountain didn’t blow its top, the top slid off,” he said. “The missing part is really all in the valley of the North Fork of the Toutle River. It slid off, flowed down the valley and filled that in with up to 400 to 600 feet of crud off the mountain. The old top of the mountain today is in the valley.” That phenomenon helped volcanologists and geologists understand terrains around other long-dormant volcanoes.
The eruption and landslide mowed down oldgrowth forest around Mount St. Helens, and Wiatt remembered visiting Italian volcanologists coming to the overlook to see the destruction. “They couldn’t speak for awhile,” he said. “We could see 1 million downed trees, and they were reminded of Vesuvius— these would all be people.” Today, the USGS monitors all the area’s volcanoes, but geologists understand that Mount St. Helens is most likely to erupt again. “What really becomes clear when you visit and look at the ancient deposits is that it is extremely active,” Van Eaton said. “Just to see how many different layers are squeezed into this tiny time period—the modern-day edifice of Mount St. Helens was all pretty much built up since the pyramids of Giza. It’s one of the most rapidly growing, voluminous strata volcanoes out there in the world.” ertainly, there would be differences if the mountain were to erupt today—right? Technology, as well as advanced study of the area and the mountain’s behavior would likely provide us with some heads up before a massive eruption. The Cascades Volcano Observatory was established in the summer of 1980. To Van Eaton, that’s a
real sign of how things would be different today if a new eruption took place. “There is a team of at least fifty scientists dedicated to understanding volcanic processes, and that’s fundamentally different than in 1980,” she said. “Even though Mount St. Helens is the best-studied volcano in the world, there are still many unanswered questions about the pre-1980 eruptions from Mount St. Helens,” Van Eaton said. “It’s the most active volcano in the Cascades and the most hazardous because of that. It’s been very, very active over the past 4,000 years, so we’re still trying to understand and get a grip on how big some of those earlier eruptions were, what happened. And then, what does that tell us about the nature of future activity?” The easiest answer is that we can expect more explosive eruptions. “There’s a repertoire of various things that Mount St. Helens can do,” Wiatt said. “It can do concertos and symphonies and chamber music. But you can’t tell ahead of time what’s going to happen.” Wiatt cautioned that while some preparations for another volcanic eruption would be different in 2020 than in 1980, many aspects wouldn’t change at all. “People are people,” he said. “If something interesting happens at Mount St. Helens or some other place, there’s not a fence you can put around it to keep people safe. They’re going to get in anyway.” That happened in 1980, Wiatt said, and it would happen again today. “That kind of pressure from the attitudes in the western United States against authority, that would play out again,” he said. But, he noted, emergency services are much more formalized today than they were in 1980, and he believes an emergency response would be significantly more coordinated. Today, it would be hard at first blush to see that just forty years ago the area looked like a barren wasteland, rivers clogged with ash and trees flattened against the landscape. Thanks to the natural order, as well as manmade improvements like treeplanting, the area around Mount St. Helens is largely recovered. “From a geologist’s standpoint, we study things that happened long ago,” Wiatt said. “So this area around Mount St. Helens is settling down into what’s going to be the long-term record. I can imagine a geologist coming in 500 years and saying ‘Gee, I can’t see any effects. It’s pretty spotty.’ But there will be things, no matter how much the trees grow. … No matter how many trees come and go, you’re still going to find traces of this eruption and you’ll be able to say something about what happened here.” APRIL | MAY 2020
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Bending the Rules photography by Winston O’Neil IF YOU’VE EVER wanted to combine two passions but thought it wasn’t possible, don’t be a neigh-sayer: look no further than horseback yoga. Brianna Randall leads just such a class at Sunhaven Arena in Cheney, and the hope is that it will improve balance and strength while taking your relationship with your horse to a deeper level. Can you namaste on top of your horse while you practice a sun salutation? Only one way to find out.
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FROM LEFT Brianna Randall demonstrates stretches while leading a horseback yoga class at Sunhaven Arena in Cheney. A participant prepares to saddle her horse before the class starts.
CLOCKWISE, FROM TOP LEFT Randall, right, converses with a class member at Sunhaven Arena. Participants hold a pose atop their horses. Class members form a circle as Randall gives instructions.
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A rider sits peacefully on top of her horse. AT LEFT, FROM TOP A horse waits patiently during a yoga session. Horse tack at the Sunhaven Arena in Cheney.
TRAVEL SPOTLIGHT 72 ADVENTURE 74 LODGING 78 TRIP PLANNER 80
pg. 74 Hitting the trails is easy when theyâ€™re right in town.
Metro Parks Tacoma
NORTHWEST DESTINATION 84
thinking the world revolves around you, come visit the Oregon Coast and think again.
OREGON COAST visittheoregoncoast.com Funded in part by
Samuel H. Boardman State Scenic Corridor
Embrace Calm Port Townsend’s Soak on the Sound offers an oasis of relaxation
Soak in a private saltwater bath at this Port Townsend spot.
written by Cara Strickland AT PORT TOWNSEND’S Soak on the Sound, you can slide into a saltwater bath, either in a private room or in a swimsuit-optional community room. The warmth and anti-inflammatory properties of the salt will ease tension in your muscles. Private rooms can hold up to six people, depending on the room, and the community room is first come, first served. As long as there is no waiting list, you can soak in the community tub as long as you want, but be sure to get up and cool off in the shower from time to time and take advantage of the water service to avoid overheating. Step into the Finnish-style steam sauna for another layer of relaxation, taking some time to lounge on the cedar planks. To extend your visit, book an on-site massage or spend a little time on the sun lounge with a local beverage and the nearness of the ocean. It’s the sort of place you don’t mind lingering, with a thoughtfully curated gift shop, snacks and drinks (both alcoholic and other), and an aesthetic intended to invite visitors to see the spa as an experience away from the world.
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Washingtonâ€™s Lake District Lakewood, WA is home to seven lakes, some of the regionâ€™s finest
parks, spectacular gardens,
and bucket-list-worthy golf.
Our Urban Trails
Five no-hassle escapes that are right in town written by Gregg Herrington
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IN HIS 1950 memoir, Of Men and Mountains, the late U.S. Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas of Yakima County wrote, “Men can find deep solitude and, under conditions of grandeur that are startling, he can come to know both himself and God.” Washington is a paradise for backcountry and wilderness hikers like Douglas. But flat, paved, close-to-home trails are increasingly part of our urban landscapes. They offer places for escape, reflection and exercise, if only for a lunchhour walk, and require no special equipment or long drives. We’ve selected five of Washington’s urban trails to feature—in Bellingham, Seattle, Tacoma, Wenatchee and Spokane. But the state is rich with close-in paths and trails. Local and state governments, nonprofits such as the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy, businesses, individual donors and enthusiastic volunteers are largely responsible for our urban-trails trend.
Bellingham to Fairhaven on the South Bay Trail across the bay” as well as on land, where the grand Chrysalis Inn and Spa is a prominent feature with its splendid views from the patio bar and restaurant. The trail’s south end at the Village Green, 1207 10th St. in Fairhaven, is close by the Colophon Cafe and other restaurants and shops, such as Village Books. Near the trail’s north end at Railroad Avenue and Maple Street are La Fiamma Wood Fire Pizza, Boundary Bay Brewery & Bistro and the Depot Market, which hosts a Saturday farmers market in season. Two miles south, at 470 Bayview Drive,
Bellingham Whatcom County Tourism
Twenty-three miles south of the Canadian border, this college-town trail links downtown Bellingham with the city’s Historic Fairhaven District 2.5 miles south. In addition to scenic delights along the way there are restaurants, pizza parlors, shops and a park near each end. The route, including an over-the-water boardwalk-style stretch, offers views of Bellingham Bay’s kayakers, pleasure boaters and harbor seals, as well as the San Juan Islands and Vancouver Island, B.C. (on a clear day). Paulette Freeman of Bellingham said the Taylor Dock on the “boardwalk” is her favorite place “to slow down and take in the views
AT LEFT Seattle’s Burke-Gilman Trail connects the city to Bothell. ABOVE In Bellingham, Taylor Dock is a perfect stroll.
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FROM LEFT The Don Kardong pedestrian bridge crosses the Spokane River. Tacoma’s trails include this one in Dune Peninsula park.
is scenic Boulevard Park, an alternative north-end starting point or a destination itself, with its picnic tables and the rustic Woods Coffee shop. The trail surface includes city sidewalks and crushed gravel, primarily in the north end. It’s OK for bikes, but not so much for in-line skates.
and paved, much of it along a former railroad grade. Among many near-trail restaurants are the HUB (Husky Union Building) on the UW campus, Great State Burgers, 3600 NE 45th St., and Gretchen’s Place, 5432 Sand Point Way NE. More online: www.traillink.com/trail/burke-gilman-trail
More online: www.traillink.com/trail-maps/south-bay-trail
Tacoma Waterfront Walk Can Fill a Day
Seattle Trail Has Sound, Locks, Lakes, UW
If you have just one day to play in Tacoma, you can’t go wrong on the Commencement Bay waterfront and its 3.5-mile Ruston Way path. “Every inch of this paved route features unobstructed views of mountains, the city and the bay, with occasional sightings of seals and even whales,” said Hunter George of Metro Parks Tacoma. “There’s something for everyone—bike and boat rentals, a fishing pier, bars, restaurants and an ice cream parlor.” The east-end starting point is Chinese Reconciliation Park on the waterfront, 1741 N. Schuster Parkway. It’s just below the historic Old Town neighborhood and the Spar family-friendly restaurant, 2121 N. 30th St., which is said to have been Tacoma’s first saloon. A little farther east, the Tacoma Museum District is worthy of a full day itself. At the west end, the Ruston Way Path connects to the new 55-acre Dune Peninsula park, which features a trail and, for the kids, six slides down a 60-foot slope. From there, the new Wilson Way pedestrian bridge leads to 760-acre Point Defiance
Seattle’s—and perhaps the state’s—busiest hiking/cycling/ skating venue is the 19.8-mile Burke-Gilman Trail, from Golden Gardens Park on Puget Sound’s Shilshole Bay to suburban Bothell. Eastbound, the B-G Trail passes through Ballard with its Carl S. English Jr. Botanical Gardens and Hiram M. Chittenden Locks that link Puget Sound to Lake Washington. The trail continues through the Fremont and Wallingford neighborhoods, along the north shore of Lake Union and the east edge of the University of Washington campus before wrapping around the north end of Lake Washington via the cities of Lake Forest Park and Kenmore. The Burke-Gilman ends in Bothell’s Blythe Park, where the name changes to the Sammamish River Trail and continues 11 miles to Marymoor Park in Redmond. Except for a 1.4-mile section in Ballard, where the route is over city streets and sidewalks, the Burke-Gilman Trail is off-street 76 1889 WASHINGTON’S MAGAZINE
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MORE TRAILS TO TREK Here are some more Washington urban trails worth discovering. • Aberdeen: East Aberdeen Waterfront Walkway • Anacortes: Tommy Thompson Trail • Asotin-Clarkston: Greenbelt Trail • Ellensburg: Irene Rinehart Riverfront Park Trail • Everett-Edmonds: Interurban Trail • Issaquah-Redmond: East Lake Sammamish Trail • Kirkland: Cross-Kirkland Corridor • Longview: Lake Sacajawea Park Trail • Silverdale (Kitsap County): Clear Creek Trail • Tri-Cities: Sacagawea Heritage Trail • Vancouver: Columbia River Renaissance Trail
Metro Parks Tacoma
• Yakima-Selah-Naches-Union Gap: Yakima Greenway Trail
Park, including zoo, aquarium, old-growth forest and more trails. There’s free parking along Ruston Way and in Point Defiance Park. More online: www.traveltacoma.com/regions/tacoma/ ruston-way-waterfront www.traveltacoma.com/things-to-do/museum-district
Cross the Columbia on Apple Capital Loop After dams, the Wenatchee Valley’s most prominent manmade feature is arguably the 10-mile Apple Capital Loop Trail along both sides of the area’s most prominent natural feature, the Columbia River. The paved trail links Wenatchee and East Wenatchee via the Odabashian Bridge on the north carrying U.S. Highways 2 and 97 and the pedestrian Pipeline Bridge on the south. The circuit is perfect for many bikers, while shorter, out-and-back excursions from any point on the loop are sufficient for most walkers. Trail attractions and parking on the Wenatchee (west) side include the cavernous Pybus Public Market at the foot of Orondo Avenue and three parks north of it to Confluence Park, where a side trail connects to the Horan Natural Area. Wildlife sightings there have included a moose. The East Wenatchee side is more woodsy and winding, with optional extensions, north 5.5 miles past Rocky Reach Dam to Lincoln Rock State Park and south 2.2 miles to Kirby Billingsley
Thanks for the contributions of Craig Romano of Skagit County (www.craigromano.com), author of 20 hiking books, including several in his “Urban Trails” series.
Hydro Park. East-side parking is at the foot of 19th and 27th streets and just north of Odabashian Bridge. More online: www.chelanpud.org/docs/default-source/default-document-library/apple_cap_rec_loop.pdf
Views on Spokane’s Riverfront-Gonzaga Loop Susie Long works in downtown Spokane and often walks the 2.2-mile Riverfront Park-Gonzaga University trail on her lunch hour. “A walk on the Loop is a great way to see many parts of the city in one fell swoop,” she said. “You get park, river, urban sights and sounds, public art, wooded areas and more.” Starting on the park’s south side at Rotary Fountain on Howard Street, head east past the 1909 carousel, a kid-friendly giant Radio Flyer wagon and outdoor statues. Cross the Spokane River on the Don Kardong pedestrian bridge to Gonzaga, where Centennial Trail breaks off toward Idaho. Spend a few minutes on campus and check out the Bing Crosby statue in honor of the late crooner and Gonzaga benefactor, who grew up in Spokane. Turn back west on the loop trail and cross through Riverfront Park (site of the 1974 Spokane World’s Fair) to the starting point, near the must-see gondola rides above the tumbling Spokane River. Cap your outing at Atticus Coffee and Gift Shop a block south on Howard Street. More online: static.spokanecity.org/documents/parks/trails/walking-hiking-map.pdf (scroll down to No. 1)
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Choose secluded treehouses with fire pits and private decks, or a variety of guest-room styles from basic guest rooms to suites with varying views. Certain rooms are pet friendly, so you can bring your furry friends to Skamania Lodge as well. The accommodations are comfortable and rustic without giving up the comforts of a resort.
If you’re here for relaxation, Skamania has you covered with an indoor pool and hot tub, as well as an outdoor hot tub overlooking the Gorge. Check yourself into the Waterleaf Spa for a full range of services, or keep your workout routine going in the fitness center. On the property, besides hiking and a fitness trail, you can try your hand at axe throwing, ziplining, or make your way through the aerial park challenges. If you’re fond of being on wheels, you can take advantage of year-round free bike rentals for guests. If you’d rather be on the green, check out the newly redone golf course. Keep an eye out for special events and activities throughout the year.
Enjoy an outdoor bite at the Greenside Grille (right by the golf course) or have a casual bite at River Rock, where you’ll find wood-fired pizza, salads and burgers. For a more formal dining experience, check out the Cascade Dining Room for breakfast, lunch and dinner, as well as a Sunday Champagne brunch. If you’re on the go, you might want to take advantage of Skamania’s Green Apron service, packaging up a meal for wherever your adventures will take you.
CLOCKWISE FROM LEFT Skamania Lodge’s lobby is tastefully designed, with exceptional views. The lodge sits on the Columbia River Gorge. The lodge offers an aerial park as well as other fun activities.
Skamania Lodge written by Cara Strickland EXPERIENCE THE COLUMBIA GORGE from a comfortable home base. This long-standing lodge has top-notch views, plus a variety of options to keep you busy, from golf to an aerial park. Whether you’re looking for a family vacation, a quiet getaway or an adventurous escape, there is something here for you. 1131 SW SKAMANIA LODGE WAY STEVENSON www.skamania.com
Sunshine for all Seasons in Sequim! Outdoor adventure, small town charm, lavender, sunshine and so much more! Visit Sequim, Washington on the beautiful Olympic Peninsula for a relaxing and refreshing getaway.
Hide Away in the Skagit Valley Eat, play and toast in this thriving agricultural community between the mountains and the sea written by Jen Sotolongo
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Skagit Valley is world renowned for its tulip festival.
THE WORD “SKAGIT” means “to hide away” in the native tongue of the Lushootseed Salish tribe that inhabited the land before pioneers arrived. Situated an hour north of Seattle, between the Cascade Mountains and the Puget Sound, the Skagit Valley has some of the lushest soil in the state. The fertility of the land has galvanized a passionate community that produces a cornucopia of agricultural products found only in this special pocket of the state. If indulging in foods plucked from the ground or sea that day, nurturing a nature fix in mountains that inspire awe from all angles, or watching for wildlife along the rocky shores of the Puget Sound is your idea of a hideaway, then plan a few days in the Skagit Valley.
Day HIKES • BOUNTY • SMALL TOWN My dog, Sitka, and I began our trip with a hike in Little Mountain Park in Mount Vernon. This gem features 10 miles of trails. Drive to the top and begin by making the short walks to both the south and north viewpoints. From the south, the observation deck displays panoramic views of the lower Skagit Valley, Whidbey and Camano islands, the Puget Sound and the Olympic Mountains. The north viewpoint features Padilla Bay, the San Juan Islands and Mount Baker. Several trails begin here, with varying degrees of difficulty. After working up an appetite, I popped into C-Square Bistro, managed by the Skagit Valley Food Co-op next door. C-Square serves Northwest-style meals sourced from local farmers and producers. Chilled from the soggy hike, I warmed up with a turmeric latte. My solstice tacos came piled so high with vegetables, they required a fork. On our way to the Heron Inn in charming La Conner, I kept an eye out for the famous snow geese that flock to the Skagit Valley each winter. Sitka and I were greeted with warm hospitality before sneaking away to take advantage of the cozy fireplace and Jacuzzi tub in my spacious room. The hotel was less than a half block from the main drag, so we took a spin around town, peering into galleries and gift shops, before running into the marina. Famous for hosting the annual Tulip Festival, La Conner also attracts a vibrant art culture. For dinner, I decided on Seeds Bistro. Chef Jason Custer works with regional farmers and fishermen to bring guests seasonal meals. At the suggestion of my server, I went with the Brussels sprouts and “beets by Jay” from the small plates menu. I ate my meal piece by piece, to savor the simple yet complex flavors. It was one of those meals that left me sad to finish the last bite. APRIL | MAY 2020
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Day SLOUGHS • BEER • BREAD Feeling refreshed from a solid sleep, I headed downstairs to indulge in the Inn’s chia pudding, bowls of fruit, lentil and quinoa porridge and assortment of veggies. Today, we planned to visit several breweries located on the Skagit Valley Ale Trail, but first, we walked off my meal at Padilla Bay. The 4.4-mile walk follows the bay where the Skagit River meets the Salish Sea. Birders will revel in the constant flutter of busy waterfowl swooping overhead. The birth of Skagit Valley Malting, in 2011, led to a rise in craft breweries, distilleries, cideries and meaderies that take advantage of the local grain. Today, the Farm to Pint Passport encourages beer lovers to visit all fourteen breweries to earn a souvenir pint glass upon completion. I started off at Bastion Brewing in Anacortes, which produces a variety of beers ranging from lagers to ales to Belgian-style beers, as well as the occasional sour. Owner Joe Behan began as a homebrewer with zero restaurant experience who grew his business under the guidance of a book. I made a stop at the famous Breadfarm bakery to pick up some bread, at the behest of my parents. Next up was Terramar in the tiny but vibrant town of Edison. Once a slaughterhouse and a Russian Mafia chop shop, reminders of the brewery’s history show in artifacts left behind, like the rusted Mafia truck displayed in the dining area. Ready for lunch, I ordered a pizza alongside my beer sampler tray. For my third stop, I headed to Garden Path Fermentation, a hyperlocal project that makes beer, wine, mead and cider. The goal here is to source all ingredients from within 10 miles of the tasting room, including 100 percent native Skagit Valley yeast, which means no two beers are ever the same. Last on my beer tour was Farmstrong Brewing Company, named the Skagit Valley’s best brewery four years in a row. In addition to beer, the brewery is also home to the Ragged & Right Cider Project, which uses apples grown in the valley. I stayed for dinner—tacos served by the on-site food truck, Los Cachanillas. 82 1889 WASHINGTON’S MAGAZINE
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CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT Willowbrook Manor owner Terry Gifford serves tea and scones. C-Square Bistro specializes in local food. Cypress Island is accessible by water and open only to foot traffic. Terramar Brewing’s building is full of history.
SKAGIT VALLEY, WASHINGTON
EAT C-Square & Third Street Cafe www.csquare.coop/ third-street-cafe Seeds Bistro www.seedsbistro.com Terramar Brewing www.terramarcraft.com Gere-a-Deli www.gereadeli.com Terramar www.terramarcraft.com
STAY The Heron Inn & Day Spa www.theheroninn.com Willowbrook Manor www.teaandtour.com
PLAY Little Mountain Park www.littlemountainpark.org Padilla Bay Trail www.wta.org/go-hiking/ hikes/padilla-bay
That evening, I checked into the Willowbrook Manor, a chamomile farm and English tea house located off the North Cascades Highway. My room, the loft above the garage, was adorned with retro appliances and repurposed materials from the renovation of a nearby high school gym.
Day TEA • WATER TAXI • EXPLORING Having arrived in the dark, I awoke to a stunning stone manor set on an expansive property in the shadow of the Cascades. While owner Terry Gifford made a batch of scones for our morning tea, Sitka and I took a walk along the Cascade Trail located right outside the property. Upon our return, the smell of freshly baked blueberry and rosemary scones lured me inside the estate. I was instructed to select a tea cup of my choice and a tea to complement those scones. When a divorce left Gifford in need of a way to earn income, she used what she had at her disposal—a giant house on a large property—and developed Tea and Tour. Experiences begin with morning tea and
scones and progress to bike rides ranging from 10 to 100 miles, showcasing the history and scenery of the region. Come summer, guests can enjoy glamping in High Camp, a luxurious tent with hot water, a cozy bed and gas fireplace. Sitka and I had a boat to catch, so we departed for Anacortes, stopping at Gere-aDeli to pick up a sandwich for lunch. We met Stephanie Fernandez, owner of Skagit Guided Adventures, who would take us on a hike around Cypress Island. Accessible only by water taxi and private boat, Cypress Island sees relatively few visitors and permits only foot traffic. Ninety percent of the island is protected by the Department of Natural Resources, making it the largest, mostly undeveloped island in the San Juans and an important wildlife habitat for bird and marine species. We trekked along 5 miles of trail through coastal rainforest and maple groves and past a small lake. We paused for a seaside lunch with views of the Salish Sea, Mount Baker and the North Cascades before making our way back to the boat launch. Fulfilled from a day of trekking in such a special place, we loaded back into the car already planning our return. APRIL | MAY 2020
Cascade Trail www.skagitcounty.net/ Departments/ParksAndRecreation/ parks/cascadetrail.htm Skagit Guided Adventures www.skagitguidedadventures.com
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northwest destination CLOCKWISE FROM LEFT The wilderness is nearby in Joseph. Downtown Joseph is a charmer. Get your sweet fix at Arrowhead Chocolates. The Blythe Cricket Bakery & Bistro is a comfort food spot. Try Terminal Gravity Brewing for perfect beers.
Losing time in wilderness and traditions in an Eastern Oregon mountain town written by Kevin Max
IT’S NOT EASY to get to. It’s a long way from anywhere. But then you round a bend and it comes for you, and it grabs you, and you don’t want to leave. Ever. Tucked away in the northeast corner of Oregon and at the edge of Eagle Cap Wilderness, Joseph is the tiny mountain town that shows as well as it photographs. This is a place filmmakers like Ron Howard crave for its simple beauty, where cattle can be their best, mooing about in high alpine grasses and where photographers need only step outside for inspiration. It’s Mountain Mayberry but cast in bronze. Joseph was named after Chief Joseph, the famed Nez Perce leader who, in 1877, fought the US Army with heart during his tribe’s eviction from the area to a reservation in Idaho. The population of Joseph is now close to 1,100. The town is a mix of farmers and ranchers, restaurateurs and brewers and artists. Indeed, bronze foundries in Joseph bring sculptors to live and work in the area, casting sculptures throughout the town. 84 1889 WASHINGTON’S MAGAZINE
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The big community events are the Chief Joseph Days, which centers on a rodeo (July), and the Bronze Blues & Brews festival, which brings music, sculptures and craft beer to the fore (August). I’ve been to Joseph a few times over the past decade, but never in spring. My goal was to hit new trails, see new views in the Wallowas, eat healthy farm-to-table, discover new beers from Terminal Gravity and see what’s new in bronze sculpture. Normally I couldn’t stand still enough to hike trails and have to take off running, but on this trip I wanted to slow the world down a bit more and enjoy every step. Bonny Lakes Trail is just shy of 8 miles out and back, and gains 1,300 feet over the 3.9mile first leg. At the top, you’ll be rewarded with two alpine lakes. At this time of year, no one can hear when you scream in delight. No trip out here is complete without a stop at Terminal Gravity Brewery, 6 miles away in Enterprise, a comely little cottage
EAT Arrowhead Chocolates www.arrowhead chocolates.com Blythe Cricket Bakery & Bistro www.theblythecricket.com The Gold Room at The Jennings Hotel www.goldroompizza.com The Range Rider www.facebook.com Terminal Gravity Brewing www.terminalgravity brewing.com
Talia Jean Galvin
Talia Jean Galvin
STAY The Jennings Hotel www.jenningshotel.com
PLAY Iwetemlaykin State Heritage Site www.oregonstateparks.org
with heavenly hopped craft beer. I quenched with the Fuggetaboutit Hazy IPA, then finished with a sweet tooth and the local collaboration Arrowhead Chocolate IPA. Back in Joseph, I craved something different. The Blythe Cricket Bakery & Bistro, known for its homemade soups, frittatas and “jack up” corn cakes smothered with salsa, sour cream and cheese, spoke to me. One of each, please—I did put in three hours on the trail, after all! On my next day’s hike, I headed to High Ridge Trail, hoping for more gasping views in the Eagle Cap Wilderness. High Ridge Trail is a good early-season hike at relatively low elevation, despite its name. Wildflowers, open green meadows and towering Ponderosas were my companions until I reached a winning vista at 3.8 miles. In town, I sought out a new bronze sculpture on Main Street created by Native artist Doug Hyde. His piece is a full-size Nez Perce woman, her hair perfectly braided, her arms held in front
Joseph Ivan Long
Eagle Cap Wilderness hiking www.fs.usda.gov Josephy Center for Arts and Culture www.josephy.org
of her as if she had two swaddled infants unexpectedly pulled from them, her face stoic and expressionless. The piece, funded by the Oregon Community Foundation, is called “etweyé·wise,” meaning “I return from a hard journey.” I headed back to the country-chic, boutique The Jennings Hotel and its restaurant, The Gold Room, a Neapolitan pizza place that was started by two Ava Gene’s restaurant refugees from Portland who were looking for a small town. Still bent on stopping the world from spinning, I ordered an old fashioned and let the bourbon wash over my tongue, the bitters taking the edge off the bourbon. The pizza came later from the wood-fired oven, and it transported me to southern Italy, where pizza is made daily and simply. In the morning, I had one last task, one last old world indulgence—a silky Early Grey custom blended tea and a box of handmade chocolates from Arrowhead Chocolates. Chocolate doesn’t slow time, it just makes it sweeter. APRIL | MAY 2020
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The points of interest below are culled from stories and events in this edition of 1889. Oroville
Bellingham Friday Harbor North Cascades National Park
Mount Vernon Coupeville
Port Angeles Forks Olympic National Park
Marysville Everett Chelan
Renton Kent Federal Way
Wenatchee Ephrata Ritzville
Mount Rainier N.P.
Pullman Yakima Pomeroy
Long Beach Cathlamet
Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument
Walla Kennewick Walla
Soak on the Sound
42 Rockwood at Whitworth
Apple Capital Loop Trail
23 Cougar Gold
44 Heliotrope Hotel
24 Schreiber & Sons Farms
46 NK Woodworking
36 Pilchuck Glass School
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Until Next Time
Crabbing in the Salish Sea written by Richard Porter | illustrated by Allison Bye
GOING CRABBING ON the Salish Sea in December is about degrees of discomfort. How long are you willing to spend on the waves? How many crabs do you want to catch? It’s an undeniably cold experience—even if you’re swathed in thickly layered PNW clothing, there’s no way to completely dispel the chilly maritime dampness that pervades everything on the coast. But here’s the thing: it’s also an incredibly beautiful time to float in the water. The sea and the sky mirror one another and their mutual color is a bruised purple-brown at dusk. On the last day of the year, my friend Tyler and I set out in a five-person canoe to toss pots in Port Gardner. We were in search of tasty Dungeness. Tyler put the boat into the shallows at Edgewater Park and pushed off, rowing toward the buoys he had dropped earlier in the day. According to local divers, the bottom of Puget Sound is littered with old abandoned crab pots, rusting to pieces. People have been pulling their dinner from the ocean in these parts for millennia, dating back to the indigenous Coast Salish tribes. The deep waters off Mukilteo have long been prized for their bounty. To take part in a crabbing expedition in these waters is to tap into an age-old tradition. It feels meaningful. 88 1889 WASHINGTON’S MAGAZINE
APRIL | MAY 2020
The waters here teem with life. A curious harbor seal popped its head out of the water, peering at us like an eager dog. An eagle flew overhead, one eye cocked downward, scanning for fish. Tyler hauled in the buoyed ropes, pulling cages into the boat. A robot-maker by day, Tyler is also the sort of resourceful, outdoorsy guy you’d want to have on speed dial when the apocalypse hits. Dungeness waved their claws in the air. Tyler sorted our catch, tossing the less-desirable red rock crabs back into the water and jettisoning undersize specimens. We hauled in sixteen crustaceans that day. We kept three of them in a 5-gallon plastic bucket. Back on shore, shivering, we divvied up the bounty two-to-one and drank hot cocoa in the gathering dusk. My home in historic Everett originally belonged to a fisherman. That night at my kitchen table, I cracked open the carapace of the Dungeness and used its pincers to scrape out the delectable meat. It had the unmistakable taste of the sea: a sweet, faintly fishy and briny flavor that permeated my hands and kitchen. It tasted like the place that I call home.
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