• Summer Camp Registration
  • Winter Bucket List
  • Spring in January

Seattle youth unite for justice


The third weekend in January, come rain or snow, Seattle Parks youth come together to learn, reflect and follow in the footsteps of one the most influential civil rights leaders of our time.

“We cannot walk alone,” Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. announced in August 1963.  “And as we walk, we must make the pledge that we shall always march ahead. We cannot turn back.”6762347617_8ab7896525_z

On Saturday, Jan. 17, Seattle teens will gather at Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Park at 11 a.m. for their annual march. The teens will hold a moment of silence and put flowers into the fountain for youth we have lost to violence, before making their way to Rainier Community Center via Martin Luther King, Jr. Way and Rainier Avenue S.

[Read more…]

Seattle Parks and Recreation Martin Luther King, Jr. Day closures

Many Seattle Parks and Recreation facilities will be closed Monday, Jan. 19, in observance of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.

These facilities and services are CLOSED:

  • Community 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


Jackson Park Golf Course opens new driving range


On the morning of Jan. 9, Seattle was covered in a blanket of fog, and yet resident golfers still arrived early at Jackson Park Golf Course’s new driving range to practice their swing.Jackson-Range-Nov2014

The driving range, which opened to the public Jan. 8, is a two-level, 50-stall, lighted and covered facility. It sits on the previous location of the course’s 10th hole.

“The fact that people are coming out in this fog tells us that this is going to be a popular place,” said Jackson Park Golf Course tournament coordinator Geoff McNeish. “We’ve gotten really good feedback on the facility. Everything has finally come together.”

[Read more…]

Youth to lead 10th annual MLK march on Jan. 17

Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”

–Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

 Seattle Parks and Recreation invites the public to join a youth-organized march to honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on Saturday, Jan. 17th. Participants will gather at 11 a.m. at Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Park, 2200 Martin Luther King, Jr. Way, 98144. Teens will lead the march to Rainier Community Center, 4600 38th Ave. S, 98118.

This is Seattle Parks and Recreation’s Teen Program’s 10th annual youth march and the theme this year is Seattle Youth Unite for Justice! Restore the Dream! Teens from throughout the city will speak out against injustice via a peaceful demonstration. The goal for the march is to celebrate the contributions Seattle youth make in creating a better city and to honor the work that youth do to keep Dr. King’s dream alive every day.

At the event, participants will participate in a moment of silence, when flowers will be placed in the fountain in memory of youth who have been lost, locally and nationally. In addition, youth will participate in three different workshops: a “Tunnels of Oppressions” workshop; a dialogue with police officers; and a gallery where youth will write letters to families who have been affected by violence. The tunnels and gallery were constructed by teens with the support from Parks staff.

The event is free of cost to all teens and community participants and will include food, live music, a safe environment, and plenty of fun!

The link to the event page is: https://www.facebook.com/events/1522583891355592/?context=create&previousaction=create&source=49&sid_create=2538787655

For more information, please contact Cindy Sandino-Chang, Seattle Parks and Recreation, at 206-551-7316 or cindy.sandino-chang@seattle.gov.



Jan. 8 PARK BUZZ: You haven’t been there unless you have a PIC to PROVE it

Send your photos to @seattleparks on Twitter for a chance to be featured on our blog!

Visit our homepage and subscribe to Explore More, our twice-monthly newsletter, to learn about new things happening in our parks and community centers this month.

@rachelhkimm @ Gas Works Park "39 - Rainy day adventures with the beautiful Abi #100happydays #GasWorks #Seattle @ Gas Works Park"

@rachelhkimm @ Gas Works Park
“39 – Rainy day adventures with the beautiful Abi #100happydays #GasWorks #Seattle @ Gas Works Park”


@catherinecarr @ Seward Park "Afternoon trail run #holidaymarathon #day25"

@catherinecarr @ Seward Park
“Afternoon trail run #holidaymarathon #day25″


[Read more…]

Your Seattle Parks Winter Bucket List

The holidays are over. You’ve seen snow flurries and below-freezing temperatures. Perhaps you’ve consumed one too many holiday cookies. And you’re starting to remember it rains here, like, all the time. You’re searching for “real estate in San Diego” and “vacation homes in Maui.” You must escape this gray city!

Well, slow down there, partner. Sure, our city may be a little wet in the winter, but it’s still one the greatest cities in the world, year-round (in our unbiased opinion). We’ve put together your Seattle Parks Winter Bucket List giving you 10 reasons to look forward to the weeks ahead. So before you do anything rash, read on. San Diego may have sunshine, but it’s no Emerald City, and if you wear socks with sandals in Maui, you might not fit in.

Plant a tree for peace

Plant a tree for peace

Celebrate Martin Luther King, Jr.’s Legacy Planting
Winter is when we honor some of our country’s most important legacies. Commemorate the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.by planting a tree to celebrate peace and social justice from 1-4 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 17 at Discovery Park. The whole family is welcome and the event is free. Instructions and supplies are provided. Find more details in our environmental learning centers brochure.

Full Moon Trek
Dancin’ in the moonlight! Everybody’s feeling warm and bright…and exploring Discovery Park! From 7-9 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 31, take a guided hike and experience Discovery Park from the perspective of a nocturnal animal. The views in the park are always beautiful, but there’s nothing quite like seeing it bathed in starlight. The Full Moon Trek event costs $5 per person and is designed for ages 8 and older. Find registration information here.

All-You-Can-Eat Pancakes
We’re hosting pancake breakfasts three out of four weekends in February. Need we say more? February is the month of love and we’re showing our community appreciation with short stacks. Hiawatha Community Center hosts its annual all-you-can eat pancake breakfast from 8 a.m. – noon on Sunday, Feb. 8, followed by Delridge Community Center’s sweetheart pancake day from 9 a.m. – noon on Saturday, Feb. 14. Bitter Lake Community Center is hosting an all-you-can-eat pancake breakfast from 9 a.m. – noon on Sunday, Feb. 22. All events range in price from $4-6 per person with tots eating for free. [Read more…]

It’s spring in January inside the Conservatory

Volunteer Park Conservatory Cactus House

Volunteer Park Conservatory Cactus House


Oh, the weather outside is frightful. But the Palm House is so delightful. A balmy 72 degrees in fact.

The Volunteer Park Conservatory underwent a $3 million capital improvement project last year, and winter is a perfect time to check it out.

The renovation reinforced the iron structural framework in the Seasonal and Cactus houses of the century-old Victorian-inspired building. The improvements included expanding walkways and installing new exits to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADT) and adding event lighting.

new grow house

New 1,550-square-foot multi-purpose grow facility at the Conservatory

The project also replaced a 1920s-era production greenhouse with a modern 1,550-square-foot multi-purpose grow facility to increase production space, and provide an area for educational classes and workshops.

The completed renovations mean Seattleites have a beautifully remodeled respite from the January rains. Within the five glass houses, you can find orchids, cacti, palm trees, carnivorous plants, and most importantly, heat.

This week, the Conservatory’s Seasonal House will fill with the new spring collection. Take a stroll through the greenhouse blooms and forget about the naked trees outside.

The Conservatory offers docent-guided tours of the houses and its plant collections by reservation. Tours last from 30-60 minutes and are free (minimum two weeks’ notice required). Call 206-322-4112 for more information.

Seattle Parks to offer ‘challenge course’ facilitator training at Camp Long

Seattle Parks and Recreation worked with Washington State University Extension 4-H to build a “challenge course” in the trees in West Seattle’s Camp Long. In 2015, interested members of the public are invited to join other educators and counselors in learning how to use adventure education to promote team building and personal development in their communities.

The introduction to facilitator training takes place Wednesday through Friday, Jan. 28-30, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. The cost is $240. The low-course facilitator training takes place Tuesday through Thursday, March 10 and 12, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. The cost is $240. The high-course facilitator training 1 (hub and spoke course with dual ziplines, ropes rescue) takes place Tuesday through Thursday, April 21-23, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. The cost is $240. The high-course facilitator training 2 (vertical playpen and trapeze jump, M-Belay systems) takes place Wednesday and Thursday, May 6-7, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. The cost is $160.

The training location is 5200 35th Ave SW at Camp Long in West Seattle. Camping is available during the training.

After successful completion of the training, participants will be able to facilitate events at the Camp Long challenge course. The course is designed to meet the 4-H certification requirements to host and facilitate group activities at Camp Long. Certified facilitators receive reduced rates when bringing their own groups. The trainings are designed to sequence together.

At the Camp Long course, several elements of the ropes course are integrated into the forested areas. WSU 4–H, through 30 years of adventure education experience, has developed curricula that strengthen critical life skills including decision making, self-confidence, positive risk taking, self-esteem, teamwork, and leadership.

For more information and to sign up for the challenge course training, please contact Challenge Course Manager Ken Turner at 206-684-7434 or keno.turner@seattle.gov.

Camp Long is one of Seattle’s best kept secrets. Located in West Seattle, this 68-acre oasis in the city offers visitors an opportunity to enjoy nature, hike in the forest, camp overnight in rustic cabins, rock climb, learn about natural history, and visit or rent the rustic Lodge. For more information, see http://www.seattle.gov/parks/environment/camplong.htm.

Seattle Parks seeks input on Highland Park play area design

Seattle Parks and Recreation invites the community to the second public meeting for the Highland Park play area renovation project on Tuesday, January 13, 2015 from 6:30 to 7:45 p.m. at Highland Park Elementary School, 1012 SW Trenton St.

At this meeting, the community will review the schematic design for the project and be asked to provide feedback. The community-initiated project that will improve the usability and safety for the Highland Park play area. The goal of the project is to create a cohesive park space, improve access, and provide new play features. Seattle Parks planners will be available to answer questions.

Families, neighbors and all interested in the project are encouraged to attend. Funded by the Parks and Green Spaces Levy Opportunity Fund, the play area project is located at Highland Park, 1100 SW Coverdale St. in West Seattle

For more information about the project including notes from the first meeting, please visit http://www.seattle.gov/parks/projects/highland_park/. For special meeting accommodations or for questions about the project please contact Jeron Gates at 206-684-0998 or jeron.gates@seattle.gov.


Making our parks more accessible

two benches with a view

path to the river 2This fall, Duwamish Waterway Park became accessible to more people in our community. With support from the Neighborhood Park and Street Fund (NPSF), Seattle Parks and Recreation was able to replace or repair existing benches, picnic tables, barbecues and bollards and develop a simple system to add accessibility to the entire park.  Seattle Parks and Recreation Landscape Architect Pamela Alspaugh designed the improvements, which the Seattle Conservation Corps installed.

The existing casual walking trails over the grass were muddy and not accessible. The benches and picnic tables were in poor shape and many were not accessible to anyone in a wheelchair. None of the barbecues were accessible to those with mobility problems, and it was impossible for the wheelchair-bound to comfortably enjoy the views of the Duwamish.

This September, Seattle Parks and Recreation installed an accessible gravel path that was designed to reach all the major viewpoints and picnic areas, replaced all the benches and added two new accessible picnic benches, and an ADA-compliant barbeque. Seattle Parks was able to recycle two small pieces of play equipment that were removed from a park during a previous renovation and Seattle Conservation Corps installed them.