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Carnation Farmers Market set to reopen

  • Written by Bob Kirkpatrick

Back in January, SnoValley Tilth decided to suspend a 15-year relationship of hosting and managing the Carnation Farmers Market, citing non-sustainability and suggested the community of Carnation manage the venue.

Fast forward seven months and community organizers of the market are set to reopen the popular venue July 7 but need volunteers to help them pull it off. 

“This year we are operating as a sub-committee of SnoValley Tilth—we are transitioning to an all-volunteer market so we are looking to community members for help,” said planning committee member Rob Gilliam. "Next year we aim to re-establish as an independent organization and hire a full-time marketing manager.

The market is held in downtown Carnation at the corner of Bird Street and Stossell Avenue. The hours of operation are 3 to 7 p.m. each Tuesday in July and August.

Volunteers are needed each market day; some for setup and teardown and others to work the information booth. A vendor coordinator, volunteer coordinator, and marketing/communication coordinator are also in demand.

Carnation Farmers Market is searching for street team volunteers to spread the word and promote the event online, and a bookkeeping and funding coordinator and one individual to function as the market operation coordinator 10 hours a week to manage on-site operations, and oversee the volunteers and vendors. A stipend will be provided for this position.

Visit carnationfarmersmarket.org to apply for the market operation coordinator, to sign up for a volunteer position, or donate to the market GoFundMe program. 

“It’s been a full year of obstacles, but I am happy with the community interest to continue with the market — thankful for all our donors and volunteers,” Gilliam said. “A lot goes into a farmers market and its good to see that people want to be involved.”

State parks open for day use only

  • Written by Bob Kirkpatrick

OLYMPIA— More than 100 State parks and properties are now open for day use, the Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission announced in a May 2 press release.

Ocean beach parks and the Columbia River Gorge park will remain closed for the immediate future, however. 

“Parks is working with local communities, natural resource agencies and our partners in Oregon to determine the appropriate timing for reopening these areas,” Parks Communication Director Anna Gill said. “No specific timeline has been identified for opening these park areas.”

State Parks will also take steps to reduce parking capacity at some urban locations such as Lake Sammamish, Saint Edward and Dash Point by limiting parking, the release stated. Reducing the number of parking stalls available will help decrease the number of people who can access the parks at one time, minimizing crowds.

The list of parks and properties that includes popular destinations for hiking and boating is posted on the Washington State Parks website.

“Parks staff look forward to welcoming visitors into our parks,” Gill said. "Please consider their safety by following the COVID-19 guidelines posted on our website and the CDC’s recommendations for visiting parks and recreation facilities on its website.

“As parks reopen, visitors should understand there may be limited restroom facilities at some parks. Beaches and camping have been identified in Phase 2 of Gov. Inslee’s reopening plan. Parks will coordinate with the governor’s office as we move toward that milestone.”

No more rush hour

  • Written by Bob Kirkpatrick
Photo by Bob Kirkpatrick

Evening rush hour traffic is typically bumper-to-bumper on this stretch of 175th Street between 131st Ave and the Woodinville-Redmond Road. Not so around 5:30 p.m. on Monday, March 23 as many commuters are now working remotely due to the outbreak of the COVID-19 virus.

Monday evening, Gov. Jay Inslee issued a "stay home, stay healthy" order, which requires Washington residents to only go out for essential activities. The order will be in effect for two weeks. 

The Garden Guy: Practice social distancing by tending plants

  • Written by By Bruce Bennett

If you were like most of us Washingtonians and followed the Governor’s recent recommendations, you were in some state of social isolation, whether you termed it social distancing, self-quarantined or plain old hunkering-down. As I am a garden designer who works from a home office, this distancing thing is a normal part of life. But, for the ball of energy to whom I’m married, Seattle’s slow-down has her more than just a little bored. But, then, the sun began to shine and my little gardener’s dream was realized: forced to stay home and work in the yard. Life could be worse.

Being alone in your yard or on a condominium balcony, tending plants that are pushing through the soil, doing a bit of spring clean-up or imaging a new floral vignette in one corner of your habitat is a positive way to make use of this down time. ‘Distancing’ doesn’t mean you are forced to remain indoors, just widely spaced from others. So, go outdoors and let the cool, fresh air wash over you, the sun bathe you in freckle-producing Vitamin C rays and the springtime fragrances in the air lighten your spirits. 

If you have the responsibility of caring for a child or grandchild, these quieter moments are an excellent time for outdoor teachable moments. Watch for the hummingbird flitting around the yard.  What’s its food source? How much energy is needed to keep those little wings buzzing away?  Where are the bumblebees? How do they pollinate your favorite flowers?  Why are we seeing fewer and fewer of them? This is all simple science to most of us. But, to a child it is all new; a bright and shiny penny waiting to be held and understood.

My old Connecticut Yankee pragmatism reminds me that children learn more from doing rather than being told. So, give them something to do that connects them to earth early in their lives. Whether you have a half-acre vegetable garden, a single raised bed or a few pots on your deck, teachable moments are still possible. Do a science project which rewards with some tasty bounty the child grew him/her self (with just a bit of help, no doubt). Teach them how to plant a few seeds and see how things actually grow and mature before they ever reach the refrigerator. Help make that connection.

What to plant you ask? In early spring it’s not too soon to plant shelling peas or snow peas. Build a tee-pee to support the vines and you’ve also built a child’s play house.  Later in the season zucchini is the plant for them to grow. If space is a consideration, there are small, bush zucchini that will produce regular-sized vegetables in a quarter of the space. For tighter balcony spaces, clean some pots, add soil and introduce your kiddo to growing carrots, lettuce and, the fastest of all, radishes. Remember to look at the growing process and the products through the senses of the child. You can provide teachable moments and nurture a future gardener. Sounds like a win-win situation within your control. 

If you have questions concerning specific plants or your own garden, in general, do contact me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..  If I receive enough questions from you, there’s a chance of adding a second, Q & A, column to the Woodinville Weekly.  See you next month!

Home Buying Tips | The three things you need to know when buying a condo

  • Written by By the Blue Team: Ashley Farrington & Michelle Blue, Windermere Woodinville

Condos are a great alternative to a residential home purchase, but there are some key differences that you should be aware of when purchasing one. Here are the three things you need to know before you purchase a condo:

1. How healthy is the HOA? 

The seller is obligated to provide you with a resale certificate which includes a variety of information that will allow you to determine if it will be a good fit for you.

a. Financials. How much do you pay for monthly dues and what is included?

What is the delinquent rate for dues? Is the complex managing its money wisely? Do they rely on just home owners association dues or are special assessments a common practice? 

b. Reserve Study. Most larger complexes have an independent report done by a consultant that forecasts future expenses and cash flows.  This is a key indicator of financial health and the risk of having to pay a special assessment in the future. 

c. Litigation. In years past, many complexes had ongoing litigation against the builders for defects – this isn’t as common now – but it is a key piece of information as it can impact your financing, your ability to resell your unit and can result potentially special assessments.

2. What are the community rules?

Make sure you can do what you want in the unit!

a. Rules for remodeling and decks/patios: These can control the types of flooring and types & colors of window covering allowed, and what is allowed on decks/patios, etc.

b. Rules for how you use/what you can do in the condo & common areas:  Smoking - can you smoke tobacco or marijuana? Rentals – is there a cap on the number of units that can be rented in the complex? Is there a requirement that you live there for one  year before renting it out? Can you do Air B&B rentals or is there a minimum lease period? Parking - what is deeded to your unit and/or otherwise available for you and your guests (reserved spaces, carports, garages, etc.? Noise - are you restricted from running your dishwasher or washer/dryer during certain hours?

c. Is the complex “pet free” or can you have a pet? If you can have a pet, what type, is there a weight limit or breed restrictions? How many can you have? Is there an off-leash area, etc.?

3. Available financing options. 

If you are purchasing the condo with cash or conventional financing, you can purchase almost any condo- but if you are using a FHA or VA program – you need to know if the complex is approved or if you can get a spot approval. 

Do you want to make sure you are doing the right due diligence on the condo you are purchasing? Do you want to get the most money for your condo sale? Do you want a complimentary market analysis or service provider referral? Contact the Blue Team - we would love to help you buy or sell! www.BlueRealEstateTeam.com 

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