Belltown Messenger - Documenting Downtown Seattle

Belltown Messenger #76 - February 2010

front page fodder - by Clark Humphrey

Founders Day Festival, Recovery Cafe, Martin Selig

HERE IT IS NOW: Been wondering when Seattle would get a permanent, tangible Kurt Cobain memorial other than that bench in Viretta Park? Wonder no longer. Heres the "giant Cobain-inspired guitar" neon sign for the new Hard Rock Cafe on Pike Street. You know, the bar/restaurant/club/merch shop that was supposed to have opened last summer.

It’s been more than a decade since the last edition of Belltown Inside Out, our neighborhood’s onetime annual festival. Wait no longer!

The first Seattle Founders Day Festival is coming this Aug. 14-15. Ben Borgman of Bedlam Coffee’s organizing it. He’s hoping it will include live music, a mini parade, and assorted family friendly activities. Planning meetings are being held at Bedlam, 2231 2nd Ave., 3 p.m. each Wednesday.
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The Recovery Cafe, previously at two successive locations on Second Avenue, has moved again. The drop-in and support center for recovering alcoholics and addicts is now at 2022 Boren. The triangle-shaped building at Boren, Denny, and Fairview was previously the Fairview Club banquet facility,. Before that, it was the HQ of designer-jean company Britannia.
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Also now on Denny is First United Methodist Church. Its new building at 180 Denny Way opened Jan. 31 with a cornerstone laying and consecration ceremony.

As you may recall, First Methodist put its landmark 1907 building at Fifth and Marion up for sale in 2007, at the height of the real estate boom. A planned site swap with developer Martin Selig, which would have had a new church built at Third and Battery, fell through. Instead, another developer bought the old building, and reopened it as the Daniels Recital Hall. First Methodist (Seattle’s oldest church, founded in 1853) has held services at Seattle Children’s Theatre during the new building’s construction.
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Damaged Goods, the music and second-hand shop we teased about last month, is now open at 2316 2nd Ave. That’s the former BLVD/Halogen gallery space next to Roq La Rue.

Its operator, former Screaming Trees drummer Mark Pickerel, has brought in hundreds of rare LPs, plus select new CDs, vintage clothes, posters, books, outré toys, and art. Pickerel may host occasional gallery shows in the space as well.

Also now on Second: Under the Needle Tattoo, moved from Sixth Avenue to 2118 Second. Its colorful storefront bears retro window lettering promising “Books, Supplies, Soft Goods,” a la an oldtime general store.
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Freehold Theatre (2222 2nd Ave.) holds its 15th annual Studio Series Feb. 5-27. Each weekend of the festival features a different set of plays, cabarets, and dance/performance pieces created by Freehold staff, students, and alums; the last weekend features best-of-the-fest encores. Call 206-323-7499 or contact freeholdtheatre.org/studio/studio-series.
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Nightlife beat: Rock n’ roll on a DJ night? That’s what Del Rey (2332 1st Ave.) now offers Thursdays under the title “Corgi Love,” hosted by DJs Breelah and Sam Rousso.

Copper Cart (113 Bell St.) is now no-cover on Fridays. DJs Sean Majors and Hyperfunk spin a house/dance/pop mix starting at 10 p.m.
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Redfin, a real-estate dot-com, has moved from Pioneer Square to the Market Place Tower on First Avenue. They’re in the former offices of Cranium, the local board-game maker that got bought and closed by Hasbro.
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Two long-stalled Belltown development projects might (just might, mind you) be “on” again. The First and Stewart Hotel, long planned for the parking-lot site at 1900 First, is back in the works, according to developer Touchstone Corp. The 11-story project would include 75 apartments, 100 hotel rooms, and 5,000 square feet of retail space, all inside a “mis-stacked” glass box structure. Touchstone has started the process for a construction permit; once the permit’s approved, it will be valid for 18 months.

SeattlePI.com blogger Lydia Heard believes construction could start late this year or early next. Heard also sees hope for another long-dormant project, a 43-story apartment/hotel tower at the northeast corner of Third and Virginia, based on the developer’s recent application for a minor change to its planned underground parking garage. This project’s current construction permit expires in June. –CH


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