The following is our second submission in our Here’s to… series where we take a look at some of the great neighborhoods across the globe. Today we’re in the Pacific Northwest as Jamie Flaxman, a broker with the Lake Union office of Coldwell Banker Bain, takes us through three of Seattle’s finest neighborhoods: Phinney Ridge, Greenlake and Greenwood.
Stand at the corner of N. 67th St. & Phinney Ave. N in Seattle and you’re technically in the Phinney Ridge neighborhood, but Seattle neighborhoods really overlap. Just down the hill you’re at Greenlake, 11 blocks south you’re at the Woodland Park Zoo, and a few blocks north Greenwood. While predominantly residential, Phinney Ridge, Greenlake, and Greenwood offer some of the city’s best recreational, dining, and shopping options, with a focus on local, small businesses.
Green Lake is to Seattle as Central Park is to New York, on a much smaller scale of course. There is a continual debate as to whether it is spelled, Greenlake or Green Lake.
On any given day, rain or shine, you’ll find people walking, jogging, biking, skateboarding, and rollerblading around the lake. The only difference, on sunny days, people come out in throngs – parents and grandparents pushing little ones in strollers or trikes, young and working up a sweat with their iPod tunes, and many just enjoying a leisurely stroll. Come summer, there’s boating, crew racing, kayaking, even swimming, and many days, year-round, you’ll find a fisherman hoping to bring the big one home. You may even find some unexpected wildlife – turtles, bunny rabbits, and numerous species of bird.
From either Green Lake or our starting point at 67th & Phinney, you can head over to the Woodland Park Zoo, where for 110 years Seattleites have enjoyed seeing and learning about animals from throughout the world. Woodland Park Zoo saves animals and their habitats through conservation leadership and engaging experiences, inspiring people to learn, care and act.
Spanning 92 acres, the zoo’s collection includes more than 1,000 animals, representing more than 300 species plus 68 species of invertebrates. The zoo provides a home for 35 endangered and five threatened animal species. And the zoo’s botanical collection includes more than 92,000 plants and trees representing more than 1,000 species. But it’s not just animals at the zoo. Zoo Tunes is an annual summer concert series. Bring a picnic and a blanket or chairs, and enjoy music from well-known artists, with a portion of your ticket price supporting zoo programs.
Adjacent to the zoo, you’ll find Woodland Park and the Woodland Park Rose Garden. The Rose Garden is one of only two dozen certified American Rose Test Gardens in the United States. The Rose Garden is open daily, year-round, and has no admission charge. Woodland Park is a multi-purpose recreational area, with lawn bowling, horseshoes, a skate park, hiking trails, picnic areas, tennis courts, sports fields, and an off-leash area for dogs.
Walking on Phinney Ave. N (which turns into Greenwood Ave. N around N. 67th/68th), you’ll notice stores with names you’ve never seen before. Phinney/Greenwood is not home to big, box stores or national chains – instead you’ll find lots of locally owned small businesses. Consignment stores are frequently found; from furniture to clothes, you can find quite a bargain at Antika, Furnishments, Labels, and The Frock Shop, and even wedding dresses at Blue Sky Bridal. Other retail stores include: Zak and Zoe with items for your dog, Metropolis for greeting cards and gifts, and Ken’s Market for fabulous sandwiches, groceries, and wine.
Restaurants, bars, and retail stores line the street on the north and east sides of Green Lake, mostly with small, local businesses (although of course you have the required Starbucks and Ben & Jerry’s). You can also find Gregg’s Cycles where you can rent a bike or skates, the GroomingSPA to give the pooch a bath after his/her walk, and Super Jock n Jill to stock up on your athletic shoes and clothes.
Red Mill Burgers, right at 67th & Phinney, offers some of the best burgers, fries, and shakes to be found in the City. Zeek’s Pizza, serves up fabulous pizza with outdoor seating, and the Greenl Lake store is right on the lake. Duke’s Chowder House, a Seattle institution, offers inside and outside dining with a focus on fresh fish and of course clam chowder. Greenlake Bar & Grill mixes a mean drink, with a great happy hour menu. Head into Greenwood and you’ll find Greek, Chinese, vegetarian, pizza, and many other restaurants, even a ramen house. And let’s not forget Wing Dome, Seattle’s best place for wings with its 5-Alarm Sauce.
Phinney Neighborhood Association
Last but definitely not least, one cannot mention this part of the City without talking about the Phinney Neighborhood Association (PNA). Housed in the old John B. Allen Elementary School at 67th and Phinney, the PNA is the heart of the neighborhood, providing and promoting programs, services, and activities aimed at encouraging connections between neighbors and fostering civic involvement in a diverse community. The PNA hosts the Farmer’s Market (Fridays), several preschools and daycare centers, the Phinney Center Gallery, a tool lending library, a Cultural Event Series, family events such as the annual Winter Festival, home and garden tours, wine tastings, and so much more.
In 2006 the PNA merged with the Greenwood Senior Center, increasing the reach of their programs to include hot meal programs, senior services, and most recently the PNA Village. The PNA also offers hundreds of classes for all ages, from music for tots to the Internet for seniors. The PNA has more than 2,500 neighborhood members and serves people from throughout the Seattle area.
All these gorgeous photos are courtesy of Linda Aaron and were taken on location at the sites listed above.