Community invited to celebrate the gift of Julia Lee’s Park

Seattle Parks and Recreation, Seattle Parks Foundation and the Knudsen family in14379590_10206718431071594_7611943832882210348_o-2vite the community to the celebration for Julia Lee’s Park, a new City park, on Monday, Oct. 24, 2016 from noon to 1 p.m. The event will feature music, light refreshments and a program to begin at 12:30 p.m.  This celebration honors the Knudsen family gift of Julia Lee’s Park, located at E Harrison St. & Martin Luther King Jr. Way S, to the City of Seattle and Seattle Parks and Recreation.

Calvert Knudsen established Julia Lee’s Park in 1993 as a statement of his love for his wife and life partner Julia Lee Roderick Knudsen who passed away in 1990. “Our father created this park as a physical representation of the depth and power of love between him and our mother,” said their daughter, Page Knudsen Cowles. “He believed that a small neighborhood park in Madison Valley would uniquely serve as a memorial to her, while further enhancing the greater Madison Park community with a natural, quiet place for reflection and enjoyment.”

The park holds a piazza style garden, handsome wooden benches and has become a green and peaceful meeting place for Madison Valley residents of all ages.

The Knudsen Family is pleased to donate this special park to the City of Seattle and encourages the community to attend and learn more about the park.

For more information on the park please visit or contact Karen O’Connor at karen.o’ or 206-233-7929.






Seattle Parks and Recreation Veterans Day closures

Many Seattle Parks and Recreation facilities will be closed Friday, Nov. 11, in observance of Veterans Day.

These facilities and services are CLOSED:

  • Community centers
  • Teen life centers
  • Environmental learning centers
  • Indoor swimming pools
  • Green Lake Small Craft Center
  • Mount Baker Rowing and Sailing Center

These facilities are OPEN on regular schedules:

  • Boat ramps
  • Amy Yee Tennis Center
  • Interbay, Jackson Park, Jefferson Park and West Seattle golf courses

Southwest Pool to close for three weeks for repairs

16139920242_7d2495327d_bSouthwest Pool, 2901 SW Thistle St., will be closed from Oct. 24 through Nov.13 for preventive maintenance. The pool will re-open on Monday, November 14.

The closure is needed for preventive maintenance to rebuild pumps, and to check boilers and critical systems. The closure also provides the opportunity for repairs and repainting throughout the building. This closure is a regular part of an 18-month maintenance cycle with the next closure planned in spring of 2018.

The final week of the three-week closure (Nov. 7-13) will result in full facility shut down including Southwest Pool, Neighborhood Service Center, Southwest Teen Life Center, and childcare services. During this time, wood floors will be resurfaced using products that prevent anyone from being in the building for several days. Gym floors require this treatment every two years. Other wood floors in the building have not been refinished for four years and are overdue for this essential work.

For a list of other Seattle Parks and Recreation indoor pools you can use as options for alternate swim sites, please visit

New date: Maple Viewing Festival at Seattle Japanese Garden, Oct. 23

Photo credit: Camille Lyver

Photo credit: Camille Lyver

Bring your cameras and capture the breathtaking sight of Japanese maple trees ablaze in fall color at the annual Maple Viewing Festival, Oct. 23.
This family-friendly event, open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, features nature-inspired craft making, riveting taiko performances, and maple tree scavenger hunts for the kids. Fans of samurai swords will not want to miss the live Japanese sword demonstration by instructors of Seibu Ryu Battojustu.

There will also be free tours with guides, giving visitors insight into the garden’s history, and helping to identify the various species of maple at the garden.

The Tateuchi Community Room will be open to visitors to see Impressions of Fall, a stunning photography exhibit curated by Vashon Island-based photographer Ray Pfortner. The exhibit showcases the juried works of students who participated in Pfortner’s fall photography workshop at the Japanese Garden in 2015.

The event is free with garden admission, no advance tickets necessary. Garden admission prices: Adults, $6; Youth 6 -17, students with ID, and seniors 65 and over, $4. Children 5 and under are free. Annual pass holders are welcome to use their pass to gain entry to this event.

Seattle Japanese Garden is located at 1075 Lake Washington Blvd E.

For more information, visit

Seattle Art Museum invites the community to learn about the renovation and proposed expansion of the Seattle Asian Art Museum

On Sat., Oct. 15 from 1 to 2:30 p.m. the community is invited to attend a community meeting at the Seattle Asian Art Museum (SAAM), 1400 E Prospect St. in Volunteer Park for the renovation and proposed expansion of the SAAM building. This meeting is an opportunity to learn more about the preservation, infrastructure improvements and proposed expansion plans for SAAM.aam-stranger-ad-community-meetings-v21

The renovation and expansion goals include preserving the historic building; improving the museum’s infrastructure; protecting the collection with climate control and seismic system upgrades; adding vital gallery and education space with a modest expansion; and enhancing ADA accessibility and the museum’s connection to Volunteer Park.

Renovation and proposed expansion plans are in progress and your input will help implement changes that will best serve SAAM and park visitors. Because it is early in the design phase process, a construction schedule has not yet been finalized. Depending on permitting and other processes, the current estimated timeline is to start construction in the summer/fall of 2017 and complete it in 2019.

To learn more about the project and to provide feedback, please visit Additional meetings will be held on Saturday, Nov. 19, co-hosted by Seattle Parks and Recreation and Saturday, Dec. 10. Both meetings will occur at the Seattle Asian Art Museum.

Severe Weather and Storm Information

Seattle Parks and Recreation staff are busy preparing for the two storms we anticipate will come through Seattle over the next few days. Please check our Parks and Recreation website and or Parkways Blog for detailed information about program cancellations, athletic field closures, where to call to report downed trees, and more.

  • Please take extra precautions for this weekend’s storm and stay indoors during high winds.
  • All grass athletic fields, including West Seattle Stadium, are closed through the weekend. For updated information on whether synthetic turf fields are open or closed, please call the rainout hotline at 206-233-0055.
  • All community centers and pools will close at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 15.
  • All Late Night Programs are cancelled on Saturday, Oct. 15 due to the weather.
  • If you cancel an event scheduled this weekend at a Seattle Parks and Recreation (SPR) site or facility, we will issue you a refund.
  • The Maple Viewing Festival at Seattle Japanese Garden, originally scheduled for Oct. 15-16, has been cancelled due to the inclement weather forecast this weekend
  • Discovery Park: The Discovery Park Visitor Center will close at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 15. Saturday morning Bird Tour and Saturday evening Full Moon Adventure are canceled
  • Camp Long (both the park and the lodge) will be closed Saturday and Sunday.

Please use extreme caution outdoors. SPR will continue to monitor weather forecasts and will announce additional closures, if any, here. Please stay safe!


Paving project will close the Gas Works Park parking lot Oct. 17-19 and restrict access to portions of N Northlake Way Oct. 17-21

Access to the Gas Works Park parking lot will be closed from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Oct. 17-19 for a Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) paving project. Access to N Northlake Way in front of Gas Works Park, from Densmore Ave. N to the railroad tracks east of Meridian Ave. N, will also be restricted. The pedestrian entrance to Gas Works Park west of Densmore Ave. N will remain open. Sidewalks and the Burke-Gilman Trail will remain open.

Another paving project will restrict access to N Northlake Way from the railroad tracks east of Meridian Ave. N to N 35th St. from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Oct. 19-21. Sidewalks and the Burke-Gilman Trail will remain open.

For more information, please the SDOT notices linked to below, or contact David Allen, SDOT, at or 206-733-9302.

SDOT notice Oct. 17-19

SDOT notice Oct. 19-21

Seattle Parks and Recreation seeks nominations for annual volunteer awards

dennytSeattle Parks and Recreation is seeking nominations for the Denny Awards, which honor extraordinary volunteer service to the city’s parks and recreation system. The deadline for nominations is Thursday, Oct. 27, 2016. The electronic nomination form is available here:

The awards will be presented at a recognition ceremony to be held from 6 to 8:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec.6, 2016 in the Brotman Forum at the Seattle Art Museum, 1300 First Ave.

The Denny Awards acknowledge and honor the crucial role volunteers play in supporting neighborhood parks, community centers and recreation programs throughout Seattle. The awards reflect the early commitment by the Denny family to the preservation of parkland and open space for public use and enjoyment. David T. and Louisa Denny donated land that became the first Seattle park, Denny Park, in 1884.

“Volunteers are one of our most important resources in helping us reach our goals of supporting healthy people, a healthy environment, and strong communities,” said Superintendent Jesús Aguirre. “Our volunteers coach youth sports, help us plant native trees in our parks, serve on various advisory councils and boards, and provide countless other services that allow us to have the first-rate park and recreation system that Seattle loves and depends on.”

Denny Awards nominees should:

  • demonstrate exceptional stewardship of parks and/or recreation;
  • have given a significant commitment of time;
  • provide stellar leadership by supporting SPR’s goals to extend Race and Social Justice, and support Healthy People, a Healthy Environment, and Strong Communities.

In 2015, 38,386 people volunteered for Seattle Parks and Recreation, providing 270,360 hours of service, which is a donation valued by Independent Sector at $23.07 per hour or $6.2 million dollars in 2015.

For additional information, please contact Aretha Alexander, Seattle Parks and Recreation, at 206-684-8028, or A list of past award winners is available here.

Watch Coach Snoop Dogg coach youth football on October 23

Watch Coach Snoop Dogg coach youth football on October 23 at West Seattle Stadium! The Snoop Youth Football League teaches the value of teamwork, good sportsmanship, discipline, and self-respect, while also stressing the importance of academics, to youth from diverse backgrounds. Coach Snoop will motivate the youth and will be available for pictures. Grab your tickets now at


Seattle Park Board to hold regular meeting October 13

The Seattle Board of Park Commissioners will hold its regular meeting at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, October 13 at the Van Asselt Community Center, 2820 S Myrtle St. The meeting agenda includes:

PresentationCommunity Center Strategic Plan    

                         Presented by Superintendent Aguirre

Public HearingCommunity Center Strategic Plan     

Please click here to see the complete agenda. 

The Seattle Board of Park Commissioners is a nine-member citizen board created by the City Charter. Four members are appointed by the Mayor and confirmed by the City Council; four members are appointed by the City Council; and one member is a young adult appointed by YMCA Get Engaged. The Board generally meets twice a month, normally on the second and fourth Thursday, to advise the Parks and Recreation Superintendent, the Mayor, and the City Council on parks and recreation matters.