Greater Queen Anne Chamber of Commerce Awards announced

Sponsored by Vulcan, The Greater Queen Anne Chamber of Commerce Sixth Annual Awards Luncheon took place April 19 at the Space Needle. The attendees were delighted by the sneak peak view of Chihuly Studio from above at the sold out event. The GQACC Keynote speaker was Billy O’ Neill, Vice President of Operations with Chihuly Studios

The esteemed Past Presidents Award went to Pat Sobeck, of the Queen Anne Helpline “For 30 Years of Outstanding Service to Our Community.” Ms. Sobeck, the very first volunteer at the Helpline’s dawn in May of 1982, went on to become Executive Director. She is retiring after giving 30 years of service to the Queen Anne Helpline.

Current GQACC president Lauren Formicola, of charley + may co, offered the presentation of the Small Business Award to Queen Anne Dispatch, the Large Business Award to the Marqueen Hotel, and the Non-Profit Community Award to the Queen Anne Food Bank.

The winners:

MarQueen Hotel: Large Business Award
Margaret James, Manager

The Marqueen Hotel graciously hosts the Greater Queen Anne Chamber “After Hours,” hosts the Board Meetings, and donates lodging as door prizes. To the American Cancer Society they donate lodging for cancer patients traveling into town to undergo medical treatment. Along with Make-A-Wish Foundation, they offer lodging to some of these families to help make their wishes come true.

Queen Anne Dispatch: Small Business Award
Sabrina Rinderde, Tara Espinosa, in memory of Jan Paolini

In 1987, Jan Paolini opened her doors to fill a need – a neighborhood mailbox and shipping center. Jan passed away in November of 2011. The business is now owned by her daughters, Sabrina Rinderle and Tara Espinoza, who have expanded into a destination-worthy boutique with an original mixture of locally-made products.

Queen Anne Dispatch  has been involved with Greater Queen Anne Chamber of Commerce, in alliance with the Upper Queen Anne Merchant Association and the Queen Anne Community Center. They also support several fundraising events throughout the year. Ms. Espinosa has three children currently enrolled in Queen Anne Schools, and Ms. Rinderde has two children soon to attend.

Queen Anne Food Bank: Community Service Award
Elise Hale, Case Program Director; John Comerford, Board of Directors, President

Sacred Heart of Jesus, a Catholic Church in Uptown, has hosted a food bank for many years. With the support and assistance of Food Lifeline, nearby grocery stores, and the people of the parish, the food bank provided not only groceries, but breakfasts and lunches for the hungry. It operated with lots of great volunteer energy from its community, and a single full-time employee. The monthly budget was only $2500.

Last November, the program ran out of funds, and was forced to close.

Generosity kicked in. Articles about the closure appeared in the Queen Anne/Magnolia News. A television station ran a report. Emails, phone calls, letters, and personal donations poured in. The web posting attracted people to donate from all around the country, but most of the donations came from right here at home. The goal was to raise enough money to fund the organization for two years and they are just about there.

Lauren Formicola presenting award to Margaret James of the Marqueen Hotel.


L-R: Billy O’ Neill, Lauren Formicola, John Comerford, Elise Hale-Case

Pat Sobeck

Elise Hale-Case, Pat Sobeck, Christa Mcmanamon, Margaret James, Sabrina Rinderle

Queen Anne joins city’s ‘Only in Seattle’ local business district marketing campaign

The Office of Economic Development’s Only in Seattle initiative will expand to include Queen Anne and six other neighborhoods, Mayor McGinn announced last Wednesday.

The program is receiving an additional $40,000 from the City of Seattle as part of the Seattle Jobs Plan’s $1 million investment in neighborhood business districts, according to a press release from the mayor’s office. In addition to Queen Anne, Belltown, Capitol Hill, Greenwood-Phinney, Madison Valley, South Lake Union and the University District will be included in the initiative.

The initiative “highlights the hidden gems of shopping and dining in Seattle’s neighborhoods” with a website and online, print and transit advertising.

From the Office of Economic Development’s original press release on the Only in Seattle initiative:

Inspired by the “buy local” movement, the city’s Office of Economic Development (OED) worked with local business owners and neighborhood leaders to develop a campaign that would inspire people to discover and explore new neighborhoods and businesses that make up Seattle’s diverse retail community… The Office of Economic Development promotes a healthy business environment for neighborhood business districts and business organizations, and works to help grow and strengthen the business community in Seattle neighborhoods. The Only in Seattle campaign is only one of numerous OED-funded projects and activities that improve business districts.

“It’s an opportunity to showcase all of [Queen Anne businesses’] unique offerings not only to Queen Anne residents and other business employees in the area, but to people who live outside of the area whether they’re coming into the area as tourists or from the greater Seattle area,” said Director of Marketing for the Greater Queen Anne Chamber of Commerce Mary Chapman. “What we would really like to capitalize on is getting people to frequent our businesses regularly, not just come in on a one-time thing because you randomly found it, but purposely knowing what businesses are available in Queen Anne and coming to shop there frequently.”

In anticipation of the 2011 Only in Seattle marketing campaign’s expansion, the Greater Queen Anne Chamber of Commerce applied to add Queen Anne into the program.

“It was through the collaboration that we already had with the Department of the Economic Development that we filled out the paperwork and were accepted, so we’re extremely happy about that,” said Chapman, adding, “Involvement with the chamber means that we can go out and act on [Queen Anne businesses’] behalf both in terms of getting city dollars spent in our neighborhood and in terms of doing more public relations outreach in helping people in our community know about their businesses.”

She said that all of the new neighborhoods to be included in the 2011 campaign are going to receive contacts within the next month to get the research started for the marketing campaign. In the coming weeks the Greater Queen Anne Chamber of Commerce will begin the data collection for the Only in Seattle marketing team.

The Only in Seattle marketing campaign began in November of 2010 with five Seattle neighborhoods: Ballard, Columbia City, Georgetown, Rainier Valley and West Seattle. The Seattle Jobs Plan was launched in August 2010 to encourage sustainable development and shared prosperity in the region.

Join neighbors in cleaning up Queen Anne on Neighbor Appreciation Day Feb. 12

A Queen Anne neighborhood clean-up event will be held Saturday, February 12 from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. in honor of Seattle’s 17th annual Neighbor Appreciation Day.

The Uptown Alliance’s decade-old Clean and Green event will have different out-door clean-up projects in Upper and Lower Queen Anne, such as raking and pruning and litter removal. The event kick-off will be held at Counterbalance Park with Deputy Mayor Darryl Smith giving opening remarks.

The event began to receive support from the City of Seattle last year, according to Neighborhood District Coordinator Christa Dumpys, and tools for the projects will be supplied by the Seattle Department of Parks and Recreation. In addition to the Uptown Alliance and the City of Seattle, the event is sponsored by the Church of Scientology Environmental Task Force and the Greater Queen Anne Chamber of Commerce.

Holiday Magic comes to Upper Queen Anne Friday

Update 12/2 4 p.m.: As Friday inches closer, new Queen Anne merchants have joined the long list of those participating in the Holiday Magic celebration. Check it out below.

Upper Queen Anne’s annual Holiday Magic festival is coming up this Friday, December 3 from 3 to 9 p.m. on Queen Anne Ave N, from McGraw to Galer.

The celebration, put on by the Greater Queen Anne Chamber of Commerce, will be chock-full of holiday fun, including discounts at local businesses up and down Queen Anne Ave, snacks, songs courtesy of the John Hay Chorus (from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. starting at HomeStreet Bank), a visit from Santa Claus (at HomeStreet Bank), art projects for kids, a firetruck from Station 8, prize drawings, chair massages, the annual tree lighting at Bethany Presbyterian Church at 6 p.m., and more.

According to the chamber’s marketing director Mary Chapman, the the merchants along Queen Anne Ave pay out of pocket to cover the costs of the festive street tree lighting—all the more reason to invest in LED lights for the trees along the street.

“Yes, we are going green, using less electricity and we have an agreement with Artist Touch Landscaping to do our lights for the next 5 years,” she says. “They store the lights and put them up the following year.  Previously cheap electric bulb strings were bought, cut down and thrown away each year.”

We’re still waiting to hear what particular festivities will be in store at participating merchants. We’ll keep you posted as we hear more.

Can’t make it to Holiday Magic? Celebrate the holidays in Lower Queen Anne on Friday, December 10 from 4 to 7 p.m. at the Roast Toasty Holiday Event in Counterbalance Park.

Update 9:30 p.m.: Check out the list of participating merchants, and the holiday festivities they’ll be hosting:

  • HomeStreet Bank:  Free photos with Santa from 4 to 7 p.m., plus holiday treats
  • Twirl Cafe:  Cookie decorating and a “Lyle the Crocodile” activity based on the Seattle Children’s Theatre production at Twirl Cafe (with paid admission)
  • Queen Anne Baptist Church: Free crafts and snacks at Queen Anne Baptist church from 3 to 5 p.m.
  • Bethany Presbyterian Church: Tree lighting at 6 p.m., followed by crafts and snacks in the main hall
  • Chocolopolis:  Cheese, crackers & chocolate along with samples of drinking chocolate and raffles to visit the Chocolate Surplus Room
  • Queen Anne Dispatch: Elves with treats and discounts
  • Once Upon A Time: Christmas carols and snacks
  • Metropolitan Market: Delicious treats for all
  • Eat Local: Tasty holiday treats
  • My Dressing Room Consignment: 10% off all holiday jewelry, gift with purchase and book signing
  • Robert Samuel Salon: 25% off all Aveda products, wine and hors d’oeuvres
  • Smiles by Smita Orthodontics: Complimentary treats and a kids’ art project
  • Video Isle: A free drawing for video rentals
  • Communique: A free drawing for a nutcracker of your choice
  • Starbucks: Warm drinks and an art activity for children
  • Wink Cupcakes: Children can decorate a free holiday cookie
  • Paragon: Happy hour specials
  • Emerald City Smoothie: Free smoothies
  • Queen Anne Books: Discounts all day, author signing, holiday treats
  • Sully’s: Happy hour specials
  • Emmer & Rye Restaurant: Happy hour specials
  • Betty Restaurant: Happy hour specials
  • Homegrown (new shop at corner of QA Ave. and Boston St.):  Treats and coloring activity for kids all day
  • Queen Anne Books:  Discounts all day, author signing, treats
  • Queen Anne Frame: Refreshments, open house featuring stocking stuffers, fun jewelry, unique ornaments, photo frames & delightful gifts
  • Skookum Clothing: Queen Anne jewelry artist, Joanna Morgan, will offer a trunk show from 4 – 8pm with refreshments
  • Blue Highway Games: Roll a dice and get 1-20% off purchase
  • Key Bank on Upper Queen Anne: Free hot chocolate and candy canes
  • Prorobics: Cookies, candy canes, hot cocoa, and hot apple cider
  • Five Spot Cafe: Free hot cider or hot chocolate and coffee cake
  • Zaw Pizza: For every $50 in gift cards you buy, receive an additional $10 gift card for free. Free samples of their handmade chocolate chip and double chocolate cookies
  • Mimisan & Laurie Swanson Massage: Free 5 min. chair massages at Mimisan from 3 to 7 p.m.
  • Enza’s Restaurant: Complimentary glass of wine with purchase of a dinner entree
  • Portage Restaurant: Spiked hot cider for only $3
  • Tenoch Mexican Grill: Happy hour specials
  • Four Winds: 15% off total purchase, including great gifts and stocking stuffers
  • Marquise Fine Jewelry: Complimentary wine and treats – come see their selection of beautiful jewelry
  • Queen Anne Real Estate: Create a snowflake to put in the window with your $1 donation to the Queen Anne Helpline
  • Vitality Medispa and Wellness Center: Offering $99 hydrafacials and peels