Friends of Marymoor Park

October 22nd, 2003 Meeting Summary

-- see also the September 2003 meeting summary


Greg Helland announced a couple of items related to dogs.  First, he announced the opening of the new off-leash dog area at Grandview Park in SeaTac, WA.  Second, he announced SODA work parties for October 25th and November 15th.  Volunteers are needed to help spread hog fuel on the paths, and perhaps other maintenance work.


Contrary to promises made early in discussion of the Concert Series, the County has not taken down the fencing around the concert venue for the off-season.  The reason is an estimated cost of $27,000 to remove and a like amount to reinstall the fencing - a far more costly proposition than originally thought.

The County wants to remove only a few sections of fence for 2003/2004 due to the extreme budget situation this year.  They still hope to remove all (or at least more) fencing in future years.

This situation raised quite a bit of ire among some FOMP members.  Views expressed included:

  • This being an example of a major mess-up in evaluating the cost of holding the concert series

  • This being a severely broken promise to FOMP

  • A feeling that FOMP had been promised a lot (including partial fence removal *between* concerts, the complete removal of fencing during the off-season), and lowering of the stage roof during the off-season.  The extent of fencing was also understated (compare the area shown on their map)) for the purpose of getting FOMP "on board". Greg Helland, representing FOMP, had gone to a County press conference announcing the "new way of doing business" and voiced FOMP's conditional support.  None of those promises have come through.

  • A feeling that the lack of an official public hearing on the concert venue means that there is no accountability for these promises.

  • A feeling that the county is exaggerating the benefits of the concert series while failing to provide a true accounting of the associated costs.

King County's Bobbi Wallace and Margaret Anthony apologized, but phrased the question of what to do now about the fencing.  The County was leaning towards removal of the north fence and maybe part of the east fence, as well as opening gaps for all paths.  Greg Helland pushed for removal of the entire east side fencing.  Michael Hobbs pushed for east side fencing to come down as a top priority, and north fencing as a second priority.

A concern was raised that the remaining fencing could hide kids hanging out south of the stage.

The County expects to spend a few thousand dollars to remove fencing sections this season, with a similar amount needed to reinstall fencing in 2004.


Bobbi Wallace presented preliminary ideas for a pet memorial to gauge initial reactions.  She proposes building a memorial garden in an area immediately east of the Community Gardens.  The pea patch plots only use the western 2/3s of the area; the pet memorial would use the remaining 1/3.

Generally, this area seemed to be a reasonable choice for location, except for the relatively long distance from parking.  Water would be available from the garden supplies, needed only another water meter.  This site was recommended by SODA.

Community Gardens reps were concerned about security and through traffic.  They do not want people walking through the pea patch section to get to the pet memorial.  Bobbi's plans tentatively showed a path that would connect through, but it would be easy to design a pet memorial garden with a wall or fence separating it from the pea patch, and with a walkway starting on the south side and looping back to either another south side entrance or to an east side entrance.

How this pet memorial would work is that people would pay to have their pet's ashes spread in the memorial garden.  They could also buy a stone plaque (stepping stone) in memory of their dog.  There would be some availability of memorial bench installations, and memorial trees.  Fees for these would range from around $100 to around $800.

Costs of creating this memorial would depend on design.  Partnerships would be needed between the county, SODA, maybe a garden club, etc. in order to make this a low maintenance-cost facility.  It could double as a demonstration garden for recycled products (especially if that might mean grants or gifts of materials)

Bobbi reiterated that this project would need to be self-generated in terms of development.  It might rely on donations of landscaping materials and installation, and would be built in stages as revenue was generated.

There was some skepticism that people would actually pay large sums of money to memorialize their pets.


A while back, the County issued an RFQ - request for qualifications.   Two companies submitted satisfactory qualifications, meaning that those companies demonstrated to the County that they would be willing and able to move forward with the proposed driving range.  Those two companies then submitted proposals for the project.  The county found both proposals had issues they were not satisfied with, so they are going back with an addendum.

The county is looking to make a decision before year end.

It does appear that regardless of who moves forward with this, revenue potential will develop more slowly than earlier projections had suggested.


The Council's Natural Resources, Parks and Open Space Committee met in special session on October 9 for the initial presentation of the proposed rezone ordinance to Council.  However, the letter sent by Greg Helland on behalf of FOMP, sharing our concerns with the wording of the ordinance and the lack of safeguards had resulted updates to the proposal.  As those updates were not yet complete, the Committee did not take up consideration of the ordinance at that meeting.  Instead, it will be scheduled sometime in December.

The next meeting will be November 19.

These notes were made by the webmaster, Michael Hobbs, and they do not constitute an official record of the meeting.  They may have inaccuracies and omissions.  If anyone has any complaints about the content of these notes, they should direct them to Michael Hobbs at, and he will endeavor to correct them.


Home | Mission | Members | Events | News | Maps | Getting There | Contact Us | Links | Search
Meeting Summaries |
Wildlife at Marymoor | Birding at Marymoor Park

Problems, comments, suggestions?  Email the FOMP webmaster at