The second weekend of July is jam-packed with events for the Queen Anne community. Between the Queen Anne Fun Run/Walk and an even bigger Queen Anne Days, there’s plenty of fun to be had.
The kickoff to the weekend’s events is the Crown of Queen Anne Fun Run/Walk on Saturday, July 12. This year is the 30th anniversary of the walk. Funds raised from the run will directly benefit the event’s coordinator, the Queen Anne Helpline.
More than 600 participants are expected to run or walk the 3.3-mile loop around the top of Queen Anne. Registration will start at 7 a.m. at the Queen Anne Lutheran Church (2400 Eighth Ave. W.). The race starts at 8 a.m. for walkers and 8:20 a.m. for runners.
Afterward, there will be prizes and events for the fastest runners and most creative hats. Helpline executive director Lisa Moore isn’t sure where the creative-hat tradition started, but people create unique hats and wear them to the event.
This year, Pat Sobeck, former executive director of the Helpline, is creating a quilt from the T-shirts of every past Fun Run. The quilt will be on display at the church at the start and the end of the event.
The event really draws all demographics in the neighborhood — from serious runners, to kids and older walkers, Moore said: “It seems like if you live in the neighborhood and you aren’t participating, you’re watching it.”
Right now, the Helpline is busy registering people. Registration is open online and at the Queen Anne Farmers Market on Thursdays until July 10. The event is $35 online or $40 on race day; kids 5 and younger are free. T-shirts are an additional $10.
Organizers are still looking for volunteers, especially the 45 crossing guards needed, Moore said. There is an age 16-and-older requirement for that volunteer position, but parents could do it with their children, Moore said. To volunteer fill out the form online: queenannehelpline.org/events/queen-anne-fun-runwalk.
“It’s such a well-oiled machine at this point,” Moore said. “A lot of the community volunteers every year.”
The Fun Run already has all of its sponsors lined up, and Moore expects the event to raise between $35,000 and $40,000 this year, up a few thousand from the approximately $32,000 the event raised last year.
That money will go to the Helpline, which provides financial, food and other basic-needs services to people in need in Queen Anne, Magnolia and South Lake Union. Moore expects this money to be used specifically for housing costs, such as rent, move-in deposits and utility bills.
Eighty percent of the Helpline’s revenue comes from donations, so without big events like this, the Helpline wouldn’t be able to do what it does, Moore said: “We’re seeing a constantly increasing need in that area. I’m not sure if there are more people in need or more people are aware of the Helpline. Our goal is to meet the need of everyone.
“We’re just really excited,” she said. “It’s a great start to the weekend and to celebrate our community.”
Queen Anne Days
After the Fun Run, event-goers can head over to the Queen Anne Days festivities.
There is the Queen Anne merchants’ sidewalk sale from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on both Saturday and Sunday. That sale stretches along Queen Anne Avenue North from McGraw to Galer streets.
The Kiddie Parade is on Saturday, at 11 a.m., starting in the McClure Middle School parking lot (1915 First Ave. W.) at 10:30 a.m.
There is also a community festival at the Queen Anne Playfield (150 W. Blaine St.) on Saturday, from noon to 4 p.m., with bouncy houses, food trucks, game and craft booths, a car show and different family-friendly musical guests, including headliner The Not-Its!
There have been about 12 booths in past years; this year, there will be 30 booths from local nonprofits and businesses. Each booth will have a game, activity or craft.
Between 1,500 and 3,000 people are expected to attend.
In the past, the event was run by the Upper Queen Anne Merchants Association and the Queen Anne Chamber. Those two groups are still involved, but this year, the Queen Anne Neighborhood Alliance has stepped in to try to make the event even bigger.
“They’re working really hard to try and get this off the ground and make it really a pretty big deal for the Queen Anne community,” said chamber executive director Charley Shore.
Ben Hanisko co-founded the Queen Anne Neighborhood Alliance about six months ago to bring community members together and share all of the good things happening across Queen Anne; it made sense for the group to step in and help plan this year’s Queen Anne Days, Hanisko said.
For the first time ever, the event has a website (queenannedays.com) with a schedule and other information.
Queen Anne Days is the neighborhood’s block party and community festival, Hanisko said: “It deserves to be a bigger party.”
The money raised from the events will benefit the Queen Anne Community Center, which has been dealing with decreased funding over the last few years. The food trucks will also donate a portion of their proceeds to the community center.
The community center will use the money to sponsor scholarships for kids to access camps and other events, Hanisko said.
“It’s very meaningful for me to know that the money we’re raising is giving kids the opportunity to have experiences that they otherwise couldn’t afford to have,” he said. “Some of these experiences they’re going to carry with them their [entire] lives. We can have fun and make a difference.”
Organizers need volunteers to work 1 1/2-hour shifts to help with set up and take down, as well as running booths like the popcorn machine or the information booth and organizing the kiddie parade. To volunteer, sign up online (queenannedays.com) or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Hanisko is also asking local businesses to donate gift cards for the balloon-pop game.
“We really believe at the Alliance that we’re better when we’re part of the community,” Hanisko said. This event is the best of both worlds, he said, because people get to have “fun and make the community better in the process.”
Some of people’s best memories from living in Queen Anne come from this event, Shore said. Often, things can get “disjointed” and people don’t get to know their neighbors, but this event brings the community together.
Queen Anne is often portrayed as a place of affluence and the “grand, old part of Seattle,” Shore said, but she likes to remind people that it’s a great place for all of these community events, too.
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