🏊 Should you swim in Lake Union?
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🏊 Should you swim in Lake Union?

Tonight's the night! We’re kicking off our new On the Town event series at Makers Workspaces in Belltown, and a few spots are still up for grabs. Click on the image for details and to snag your tickets.
(🎨: Haley Weaver)

What Seattle is talking about

Seattle drivers love to complain about other Seattle drivers. But with bus-lane vigilantism making headlines earlier this summer, it appears that motorists aren’t the only ones who are fed up with bad behavior.

Turns out, there may be good reason for all that griping. A new analysis from Seattle Times FYI Guy Gene Balk finds that, for the most part, drivers are getting away with their bad behavior.

Traffic citations in Seattle are down more than 40 percent since 2015, Gene found. The reason? Police officers are stretched thin with other responsibilities, like managing crowds at major events and investigating collisions.

So what’s everyone supposed to do in the meantime? No one is recommending DIY traffic control, but in the case of the infamous “bus lane hero woman,” it may have led to some results. A spokesman for Seattle Police told Gene the department is working with SDOT to add enforcement to bus-only lanes starting next month.

In other news…

Speaking of curbing bad behavior, the University of Washington is studying ways to prevent Uber and Lyft drivers from stopping in the middle of the street. Researchers found that designated passenger loading zones help speed up drop-offs and pick-ups, and made drivers less likely to block traffic while waiting for passengers. (The Seattle Times)

When it comes to wildfire management, the Pacific Northwest’s indigenous tribes could probably teach everyone a thing or two. Controlled burning has been a custom among many local tribes for generations, and this installment of Crosscut’s Forged in Fire series provides some important historical context for the environmental challenges we now face. (Crosscut)

Heck yes, H Mart. The popular Korean-American grocery chain is set to open two more Seattle stores in the next couple of weeks, one downtown at Second and Pine and one in South Lake Union. (Eater)

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The waters of Lake Union are enticing on a warm summer day. Is it safe to take the plunge? Click on the photo for some answers.
(📷: Caitlin Moran)

Real talk: You asked, we answered

Lake Union, at the heart of the city, is an iconic part of our local landscape and one of the easiest places for getting out on the water in Seattle. But swimming in the lake has traditionally been frowned upon due to the industrial activities that took place on the lake’s north end for several decades in the early 20th century.

Reader Anne Hilton reached out to us earlier this summer and asked us to dive into the matter:

“There are signs all over about how toxic the water is, but I see folks swimming in it all the time. I work right by the lake but wouldn’t ever willingly swim in it. Are those signs old and the water’s safe now?”

Our search for answers led us to Tim Clark, a limnologist with King County. (“Limnology,” by the way, is the study of freshwater lakes. We had no idea, either.)

Head to our website for the (slightly murky) answer. And if you’ve got a burning question about life in Seattle you’d like us to look into as part of our ongoing Real Talk series, send us a note: [email protected].


Things to do

Our partner events

🇲🇽 Sunday: Celebrate Mexican Independence Day with a free classical concert (Ballard) —sold out

🌊 Thursday, Sept. 19: Enjoy beer and oysters at a cocktail hour to support Washington’s shorelines (South Lake Union)

Want to see your event listed here? Hit reply or email [email protected] to chat about a promotional partnership. Want to unlock big discounts at Evergrey events? Support The Evergrey with a membership.

Around town


🏙️ Join The Evergrey for some On the Town exploration (Belltown)

🗣️ Engage in conversation about how we interpret indigenous history (First Hill)

🍎 Taste ciders from around the world (Fremont)


💕 Make love happen at this month’s Evergrey Dating Game Show (South Lake Union)

🍷 Fall into autumn with this wine and cheese tasting night (Belltown)

🎤 Belt out your favorite diva hits at this sing-along (Central District)

🌇 Or head to a rooftop concert featuring Shaina Shepherd (Central District)


🌭 Check out the “wurst” Oktoberfest in Seattle (Wallingford) —through Saturday 

❤️ Join United Way for a countywide day of volunteering (All over)

🎶 Get your blues on at this weekend-long music festival (All over) —through Sunday

👕 Or score a “true to the blue” flannel at the M’s game (SoDo)


🤗 Give back and volunteer with us at Food Lifeline (South Park)

🍜 Eat, drink, and find a new treasure at this night market (Chinatown/I.D.)

👟 Run up the mountain to support youth in foster care (Issaquah)

🎉 Celebrate Latin American cultures with a parade and festival (South Park)

🏔️ Help protect Hawai’i’s sacred Mauna Kea at this fundraiser (South Lake Union)


👒 Celebrate the tradition of hats in Seattle’s black community (South Lake Union)

🐡 Check out the volunteer opportunities at the Seattle Aquarium (Downtown)

🍻 Raise a glass to Oktoberfest season at this beer festival (Green Lake) —starts Saturday

🥂 Or toast MBar’s third anniversary up on the roof (South Lake Union)

Going to one of these? Take us with you! Email a pic to [email protected] or tag #theevergrey on Instagram. Is an event sold out? Hit reply to let us know and we’ll update the listing in the next newsletter.

That’s all for today

Enjoy the sun breaks, folks. We’ll see you tomorrow. 😎

— The Evergrey

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