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When you grab your morning latte or shop for a new pair of shoes, do you think about who’s getting your cash? As big, seemingly faceless businesses take off across Seattle, Laura Clise, a born-and-raised local, found herself zeroing in on that question. That’s why she started Intentionalist, a web directory and blog tracking local spots run by women, people of color, LGBTQ+ folks, veterans, families, and people of different abilities. Their listings are mostly focused in Seattle, but some users have already added businesses across the country to Intentionalist’s directory.
“Consumer spending is a hugely under-leveraged way for all of us to support more inclusive communities through the money we spend in our daily lives,” she wrote us. “[We’re] building connective tissue that makes it easier for consumers to get to know the diverse small businesses in our city and help ensure that they continue to be a part of our communities.”
We caught up with Laura to talk more about why she thinks it’s important to shop locally — and consciously.
What inspired you to start Intentionalist?
The tremendous growth and change in our city (and many others throughout the country and the world) have led to some pretty fundamental questions about who thrives and feels a sense of belonging in Seattle.
What has the response been?
The response from business owners has been incredibly validating. It has also been great to learn from them about what challenges they face when it comes to sustaining their businesses and attracting new customers.
The response from community members has been equally validating – people letting us know things along the lines of, “Finally. I’ve been waiting for a resource like Intentionalist.”
What’s your favorite part about your job?
I love the moments when small business owners realize that they can trust us – that we truly care and view them not just as a potential market, but as members of the kinds of communities in which we want to live and work.
What’s a Seattle spot you’ve visited recently that you want everyone to know about?
Where are the two places you’d take an out-of-town guest?
By two, you mean five, right?
What’s the best advice you ever got from someone about living in Seattle?
Be sure to get out of your neighborhood. Yes, the traffic can be frustrating, but you are missing out, big-time, if you don’t regularly explore communities beyond your own.
What are five Seattle people or orgs everyone should know about?
Want to learn more about Intentionalist? Head to their website to learn about local diverse businesses and connect with them in person at one of their monthly meet-ups. If you check one out, be sure to tag #theevergrey in your pics!
Wondering how to become an ambassador? Share your referral link at the bottom of this newsletter with your friends on Facebook and Instagram. Learn More ».
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‘Every turnover is a setback.’ In King County, more than 12,000 people are experiencing homelessness. And the organizations working to them get back on their feet recently told city council that low pay and high turnover show that many caseworkers can’t afford to keep helping our unhoused neighbors. A National Low Income Coalition report estimates that it costs more than $61,000 each year to live comfortably in Seattle, but some of caseworkers earn less than $48,000 and are struggling to keep up with rising housing costs. Can city leaders help homeless service providers pay their workers? That’s not quite clear yet. 😥 (Real Change)
Cleared. Last summer, two King County Sheriff’s officers fatally shot student Tommy Le after neighbors reported a man yelling and waving around a knife in their neighborhood. Le, who was shot in the back and wrist, was actually holding a pen. On Wednesday, the sheriff’s use of force review board report declared that the officers who shot Le were “justified” because the pen could be an “improvised weapon” that could be used to “cause serious bodily injury if used to stab someone.” Linda Diem Tran, a member of the Le family’s legal team, said family members were “disillusioned but not surprised” about the report. (The Seattle Times, The Stranger)
Scaling back. Yesterday, we told you about Seattle chef Renée Erickson’s decision to pull Chinook salmon — the kind Puget Sound’s starving orcas love to eat — from her menus. But some say that curbing our appetites for Chinook pale in comparison to the big steps our state needs to take. Reader Jenna pointed us to this piece from The Stranger, which argues that local leaders should restore our state’s rivers and watersheds and tear down dams, whose hydroelectric power could be replaced by solar and wind renewable energy. In an op-ed for Crosscut, Todd Myers, director of the Washington Policy Center’s environment center, said that instead of waiting to remove dams, local leaders should increase salmon hatchery production, fight wasteful government spending, and, although it’s “uncomfortable,” consider reducing the sea lion population, which competes for food with orcas. 🐟 (Crosscut, The Stranger)
The ‘Starbucks of Taiwan’ a.k.a. the ultra-popular 85ºC Bakery, is coming to Chinatown-International District this fall. The chain bakery, which already has locations in Renton and Tukwila, is known for its fruity brioche buns, squid ink rolls, and uh, some really long lines. Get those comfy shoes ready, y’all. 🍞 (Eater Seattle)
A few of your favorite things. Have a favorite doughnut shop, rooftop bar, record store, or dog park? Seattle Magazine is compiling readers’ top favorite spots around town. Get those votes in for your neighborhood faves. 🗳 (Seattle Magazine)
📅 Wednesday, August 29: Learn to master your calendar — and master your business — at this Impact Hub Lunch + Learn (Pioneer Square)
✊ Wednesday, Sept. 5: Hear some real talk about confidence building from a queer woman of color in tech at this Impact Hub Lunch + Learn (Pioneer Square)
🎟 Watch a drag tribute to your favorite Pixar films (Belltown)
🍴 See local chefs in action while supporting journalists of color — thanks to reader Annie Kuo for the rec! (South Lake Union) 🆕
🎟 Celebrate Mexico’s traditions and folklore for the Paramount Theatre’s 90th b-day (Downtown)
🍿 Dress your best (or don’t) to watch The Devil Wears Prada in the park (Capitol Hill)
🎶 Jam out to local artists The Moondoggies and The Black Tones at the Mural Amphitheater (Queen Anne)
🍺 Sip beers and hand-crafted cocktails at West Seattle Beer & Music Fest — through Aug. 26 (West Seattle)
🎶 Get “virtually transported” to our national parks through music — through August 25 (Downtown) 🆕
🎟 Get wowed by aerial and burlesque artists (Ballard)
🎈 Take your little ones to KidChella to dance to Caspar Babypants (Sand Point)
👋 Meet your neighbors and celebrate a brand new park (Yesler Terrace)
🏞 Go hiking in honor of the National Park Service’s 102nd b-day (All over)
🎟 Fulfill your Great Gatsby dreams on a 1920s-themed cruise (South Lake Union)
🎨 Hear gospel music and listen to poetry among the trees — through Aug. 26 (West Seattle)
🎈 Take the kids to see critters and eat funnel cakes at the fair — through Sept. 3 (Monroe)
🍴 Celebrate “all things rolled” with performances and a pho eating contest (International District)
🐶 Stretch out in downward dog alongside some puppies — thanks to reader Katherine Boury for the rec! (Ballard) 🆕
🎈 Take su familia to celebrate Central American foods, art, and music (South Park)
Going to one of these? Take us with you! Email a pic to [email protected] or tag #theevergrey on Instagram. See more upcoming events on our events page, and add your own events with an Evergrey membership. Is an event sold out? Hit reply to let us know and we’ll update the listing in tomorrow’s newsletter.
Tomorrow is the National Park Service’s 102nd birthday (🎂!) and you can go celebrate by hiking it out in any of Washington’s state parks — no Discover Pass required.
Happy trails, all. See you on Monday. — The Evergrey