Friends of Marymoor Park

April 27th, 2005 Meeting Summary

-- see also the March 2005 meeting summary

1) Updates:

  • Pet Garden work is proceeding. Top soil is being removed as part of the attempt to get rid of Comfrey. The delineation between the Pet Garden and the Community Gardens has been established. FOMP applied for a Starbucks Parks grant, and we were turned down.
  • The Pacific Rim Sports Summit was effectively cancelled. Some events were moved to other venues with other organizers. The county is hoping to be repaid the money contractually obligated for the resurfacing of the velodrome from the SOC and/or USOC.
  • The Velodrome resurfacing is going ahead on schedule or even ahead of schedule. Weather has been good. Wednesday night series is on schedule for May 18th.

2) WiFi - would cover 170 acres of the park. Absolutely free internet. On logging in you would see a splash screen detailing the partnership. Naming rights would pay for it all, and would provide net revenue to the park. Small signs would indicate the locations of the hotspots and the sponsorship partner. Barbara voiced concern about having the internet access active at night. Parks will monitor the situation, but Tom indicated that studies have shown that increases in legitimate use within a park decreases bad uses of parks. If there is a problem, the antennas could simply be turned off between, say, 11:30 pm and 5:00 am.

The WiFi system would be used, at Marymoor, for controlling athletic lights and possibly other park systems. In addition, special events hosted at the park will find this technology extremely useful. And all park visitors will be able to access the internet for free.

The system should be ready for testing in late May, with a public launch in June.

3) Ruff House Dog Wash Presentation

Dina, the owner of Ruff House gave a presentation. They operate a dog wash site near where Keeney's Office Supplies used to be located. They provide washing facilities, soap, driers, etc., and charge by weight of the dog. They have a proprietary washing system that is more efficient in terms of water and time. Waste water goes into the sewer system. The soaps used are biodegradable. Water usage is about 20 gallons per dog - significantly lower than half-filling a tub at home.

The Marymoor facility would be a bit different, in that charges would be based on time, not weight. The facility would include an office and an attendant at all time.

The facility would be a cedar-sided modular building with a bit of a rustic look. The proposed site is south of the picnic shelter that is east of the stage. It would be adjacent to the NE corner of the South Lot. Initially, one building would be installed; if demand would warrant, a second building would be added perpendicular to the first. There would be a low sign in front of the building.

The northwest corner site that was initially proposed would be difficult to develop because of floodplane and historic district restrictions. The northeast corner, however, as Greg pointed out, would result in an increase of pedestrian/dog traffic crossing the entrance to the parking lot.

Another factor in choosing the northeast corner is conflict with load-in/load-out for the concert stage.

Hours of operation are anticipated to adjust seasonally, but would basically be business hours but extending seasonally into the early evening. Usage will probably be highest in fall.

The agreement would initially be for five years. Installation would occur this summer.

4) Subway Concession - Awning proposal

After comments from the FOMP board, SUBWAY has changed their proposed awning from bright yellow with white/yellow/green "SUBWAY", to a green awning with white/yellow "SUBWAY". The lettering will still be centered, rather than placed over the window. They are hoping to open in very early May, open 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. [They were open today, May 1.  They have a small, tasteful sandwichboard sign along the main road pointing to the new restaurant as well]

Barbara asked about why something like this restaurant is being contracted out to an outside company like Subway, rather than being run by the county. Norah explained well issues like the difficulty for the government to add staff to run what amounts to a business within government, the difficulties of lack of expertise in something like the restaurant industry, the difficulty within government to adjust spending to accommodate demand (i.e. adding more staff because business was good).

5) Cirque de Soleil - Possible event site development.

Cirque would like to be here for Spring 2006. A consultant investigated several sites for Cirque; they need an asphalt pad, utilities, and access to parking. The original idea of the northwest corner of the park did not pan out due to severe access restrictions, floodplain issues, etc. The consultant recommended the grass soccer fields adjacent to the velodrome.

This would be 225,000 sq. feet of pavement (or pavement and gravel). That's about 5 acres, or half of the existing grass field area.

Cirque would visit ever 2-3 years for 2 months each time (set-up in April, shows in 4-6 weeks in May, 2500 attendance per show). In between Cirques, the site would be a multipurpose site with basketball courts, mobile skateboard park, rollerblade hockey rink, boxed plantings, etc. All of these items would be moved off-site for events, including Cirque.

This would take up half of the existing soccer fields at that site. The existing fields are sand-based, which are not durable and can only be used for one season/year. These fields must be rotated, use a lot of water, and a lot of fertilizer.

Shortly, the County and Cirque will make a decision as to whether to move forward with this. The County feels that the pad would be an asset, providing more recreational activities, and providing a concentration of activity in the velodrome area (which would boost the usage of the concession stand that's going in there).

Harley, from the velodrome association, raised the issue that Cirque would conflict with the velodrome as far as parking. He expressed a great deal of concern over other non-Cirque uses. He expressed concern about sound conflicts between Cirque and the velodrome PA system. It may be manageable for 1-2 months every 2-3 years when Cirque comes in (though he did suggest that some kind of compensation to the MVA might be appropriate), but if lots of other events are scheduled.

Redmond appears to be supportive of the idea of this event site.

Norah wants to explore esthetically pleasing ways to disguise the acres of pavement. It would be set up so that half of the site was parking most of the time.

Michael shared his lack of enthusiasm for paving acres of the park. There is plenty of pavement in our society, and very little park land. Norah asked if the Park needs to be everything for everybody.

Upcoming Events

  • The 4th of July celebration will not be at Marymoor, but will be at J.B. Instant Lawns - see
  • Pacific Rim - cancelled
  • Walk for Hope City of Hope walkathon has moved to Seattle.
  • Concert series schedule will be out Friday.


  • Food Bank Plots - moving forward. CGA will need a check from FOMP soon.
  • MVA proposal for a building has passed Level 1 in the process. Harley passed out a proposed plan for a building. They are hoping for construction to start in the fall. The building would replace the existing announcing stand, but would be larger, extending south along the west side of the velodrome. Harley hopes to remove the trailer, using the building for bike storage in its new building.
  • Barbara again requested that the Rowing Club area be set up for more public boat usage.  If the SRA moves most of its operations to Idlewood, that would allow more public use at the Redwest site.


The next meeting will be May 25, 2005.

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.


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