Seattle Parks and Recreation improves lighting at Bitter Lake Playfield

Seattle Parks and Recreation contracted with Musco Lighting to install new lights for Bitter Lake Playfield located at 13034 Linden Avenue N. Parks anticipates construction lasting approximately one week, from Monday, July 27 through Saturday, August 1, 2015. The playfield will be closed during construction and the tennis courts will experience temporary closures.

The project improves lighting at the Bitter Lake Playfield by installing new safe, efficient lighting and providing lighting that will enhance playability of the field for field users with while eliminating as much objectionable glare and light spill into the neighborhood as possible. The project will replace three lighting poles with one new pole and state-of-the-art lighting fixtures. [Read more…]

July 16 Parks 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.

Group at Golden Gardens at sunset

@audreyn @ Golden Gardens
“Sunset and the evening breeze.”


Russian Nesting Doll at Gas Works Park

@findmarguerite @ Gas Works Park
“Marguerite at Gas Works park”


@david_dossett @ Discovery Park "I was that guy who never went to discovery park in the 5 years I've lived in Seattle."

@david_dossett @ Discovery Park
“I was that guy who never went to discovery park in the 5 years I’ve lived in Seattle.”


Young boys at Magnuson Park

@rajvr42 @ Magnuson Park
“Serious #cousins #fdr”


Golden Gardens beach

@chrisdahl @ Golden Gardens


Butterfly on a flower

@rebekahjsanders @ Magnuson Park
“First time getting photo bombed by a bee (lower left) #pnw #paintedladybutterfly”


Boy jumps off log at Golden Gardens

@patricklarsen @ Golden Gardens
“Beach day at Golden Gardens #seattle #jump #kids #family #nikon #baddad”


Boy jumps off diving board into Green Lake

@kealanadreas @ Green Lake Park
“#greenlake #pnw #seattle #swimming #iphone #bestcoast #pnwcollective”


West Point Lighthouse in Discovery Park

@seattleliet @ Discovery Park
“Glad that this #Seattle still exists. Lighthouse in Discovery Park.”


Golden Gardens park

@riioonn @ Golden Gardens
“You stay classy Seattle”

Meet the new superintendent of Seattle Parks and Recreation

postcardSeattle Parks and Recreation Superintendent Jesús Aguirre will host a series of community meetings throughout the summer and fall to share his vision for the future of the department and to learn more about the unique needs of each of the city’s diverse neighborhoods.

Superintendent Aguirre will give a brief presentation on the department’s goals moving forward and will lead a discussion with community members to learn more about what’s important to them with regards to recreation and public spaces.Spanish postcard (2) Vietnamese postcard

The first meeting will take place from 6:30 – 8 p.m. on Tuesday, July 28, at South Park Community Center (8319 8th Ave S, Seattle, WA 98108). All are welcome to attend.

It’s a bird, it’s a plane, it’s SEAFAIR WEEKEND

Blue Angels flying

The Blue Angels photo by Seafair

Seafair Weekend is one of Seattle’s most anticipated events. But with so much good stuff packed into three days, it can be tough to navigate. Here’s your go-to guide for a safe and happy Seafair.

Seafair Weekend Main Gate
4316 South Genesee Street, Seattle, WA

8:30 a.m.-6 p.m., Friday, July 31
8:30 a.m.-11 p.m., Saturday, Aug. 1
7:30 a.m.-6 p.m., Sunday, Aug. 2

It’s important to note that Seafair sponsors the various events taking place July 31-Aug. 2. If you have questions, complaints or concerns regarding Seafair events, please contact Seafair directly by clicking HERE. [Read more…]

City acquires Greenwood property for community park

Today Mayor Ed Murray announced the acquisition of property at 8118 Greenwood Ave. N. for a new park in the Greenwood-Phinney neighborhood. The deal closed on July 1, 2015.

“As Seattle’s neighborhoods grow, residents must have access to public amenities like parks,” said Mayor Murray. “By adding this property, we’re increasing recreational opportunities for the Greenwood-Phinney community and creating more public space next to the new Greenwood Library for families and children.” [Read more…]

Seattle Parks employs ladybugs to fight unwanted garden pests

Ladybug larvae in Bell Street Park

Ladybug larvae in Bell Street Park.

This year Seattle has seen a mild winter and an unusually dry summer – the perfect conditions for an aphid infestation. Recently our Friends of Bell Street Park members reported large population of aphids living in the Tulip Trees at Bell Street Park. Since Seattle Parks and Recreation doesn’t spray trees, our crews came up with an eco-friendly solution to the problem – ladybugs.

Seattle Parks senior gardeners released ladybugs into Bell Street Park this month with the hopes that they would lay eggs and their larvae would feed on the aphids. Within a few short days, the gardeners saw tremendous results.

“Ladybug larvae are the cutest little guys and can do quite a number on a large number of aphids,” Senior Gardener Lisa Papineau said. “The trees are covered with voracious hunters all ready.”

Join Seattle Parks and Recreation for the Emerald City Open Water Swim Aug. 15

Emerald City Open Water Swim event posterWhen you live in a city surrounded by water, sometimes you need to think bigger than a swimming pool. Join Seattle Parks for the annual Emerald City Open Water Swim at 9 a.m. on Saturday, Aug. 15, at Andrew’s Bay in Lake Washington (Seward Park, 5900 Lake Washington Blvd. S).

There will be a half-mile triangle course and a one-mile triangle course with 30-minute and one-hour time limits. Able swimmers ages 10+ can register for either the half-mile straight course or one-mile triangle course. Participants who want the ultimate challenge can register for both races at a discounted price.

Certified lifeguards will be on duty. Awards will be given to the top overall male and female swimmers, and every registered swimmer will receive a specially designed commemorative swim cap and shirt. [Read more…]

Mowing scheduled in Discovery Park, other parks due to brush fire danger

Beginning, Saturday, July 11, Seattle Parks and Recreation crews will mow areas of high grass in the north and central parts of Discovery Park in Magnolia due to concerns over potential brushfires.

Unusually dry, hot weather in Seattle this summer has created potential fire hazards in parks and natural areas throughout the city.

The grass in these areas of Discovery Park has not been mowed from March 15 through mid-July to accommodate ground-nesting bird species. Because the nesting season started earlier this year due to warm weather, Seattle Parks and Recreation staff believe the birds may have completed their nesting early. [Read more…]

Seattle Parks and Recreation’s parks and programs named top picks for family recreation

Kids and nature docent on beach in Discovery Park

A Seattle Parks docent teaches kids about marine life on the beach at Discovery Park.

When it comes to making good impressions, moms and dads can be the toughest critics. That’s why we were honored to hear that Seattle parents named Discovery Park the best Urban Nature Experience for a second year in a row.

Every year ParentMap magazine’s editorial team surveys its readers to discover the best family resources in Seattle as part of its Golden Teddy Awards.

This year Discovery Park took first in the Urban Nature Experience category with Carkeerk Park, Seward Park and the Washington Park Arboretum listed as finalists. [Read more…]

Pianos in the Parks encourage park discovery through music

Piano from the 2014 Pianos in the Parks program.

Piano from the 2014 Pianos in the Parks program. Photo provided by Laird Norton Wealth Management.

It’s music to our ears: the pianos are back. After a successful first campaign, Pianos in the Parks will be returning for a second season on July 16. The month-long program will add to additional pianos to the roster this year, totaling 22 pianos in Puget Sound-area locations. Seattle Parks and Recreation will host 11 pianos in public parks.

The program, led by Laird Norton Wealth Management, is designed to encourage the discovery of parks through music and art by placing one-of-a-kind, artist-designed upright and grand pianos in parks and public spaces across King County including Seattle, Bellevue, Kirkland, Mercer Island and Sea-Tac, for free public use and music exploration.

All 22 previously owned pianos are procured, repaired, tuned, transported and maintained by Classic Pianos; and are painted by student, alumni and faculty artists of Gage Academy of Art. [Read more…]