Friends of Marymoor Park

August 23rd, 2006 Meeting Summary

-- see also the July 26, 2006 meeting summary

Attendees: Greg Helland, Jack MacKinnon, Herb Bone, Norah Gaynor, Michael Hobbs. 

(That said, I won't be able to make the September meeting...<sheepish grin>)

1)  Chipotle Grill Promotion

Greg and other members of the FOMP board were surprised earlier this month by a Seattle Times reporter, asking questions about a joint promotion between King County Parks and Chipotle - a Mexican restaurant

The link below might work; if not, the story ran on the front page of the Seattle Times on Saturday, August 19.

Greg was a unhappy that this had not been mentioned at a prior FOMP meeting.  Assuming that the Chipotle promotion was in the works prior to the July FOMP meeting, Greg expressed a strong for all such items to be shared with FOMP in a timely fashion.

Michael was unhappy because of the commercial links and advertising in the park.

Norah pointed out that the Park System is trying to get the private sector involved in supporting parks.  Chipotle donated over $1500 from their opening day to SODA, the dog area support group.  That money will be used by SODA for maintenance in the park.

Norah made an impassioned argument that Parks is under tremendous pressure to raise revenue because there is too little funding in the general fund.  This revenue generation is a major focus of the Parks operational plan.

Michael expressed dismay at the number of advertising and sponsorship signs within Marymoor.  Greg also made this argument, including as well the event signs which are numerous and large.  Norah, while agreeing with the aesthetic issue, argued that the event signs provide useful information to park users, and are important in directing traffic.

Greg argued that the block after block of signs at the Marymoor entrance is very unsightly - " entering a KOA campground".  An electronic reader board (though located inside the park entrance, and tastefully presented) was proposed.

Michael also argued that while some companies that have partnered with Parks (Starbucks, Group Health) are dedicated to parks, many of the entrepreneurial ventures are apparently based on a win-win, bottom-line mentality that really has nothing to do with parks at all.  Marymoor should not simply be an advertising opportunity for businesses.  It's one thing to sponsor a park event; the event being advertised in the Chipotle promotion was the opening of a restaurant outside of the park.  Where's the connection?

2) Capital Project Updates:

  • All-weather soccer fields - Mostly done, and will be ready for the first scheduled games on September 2.  Quite a bit of landscaping around the fields remains to be done.
  • New Utility Shop - still not operational, but soon.  Karl's group will remain where they are, but the heavy equipment stored near Karl's shop will be moving to the new site.
  • Reflexology Path - unveiling soon (mid-September).
  • Birdloop - plans are being developed; ELWAS will probably be at an upcoming FOMP meeting to present their plans.

3) Event Update:

  • 4000 attended the Art at Marymoor event.  The Marymoor Community Gardeners booth was a success.  The show organizers were happy, though they would have liked more shade.  Holding the event around Clise Mansion would have been a preferable location; schedule conflicts with a concert precluded that.  However, Norah expressed a desire to work with the concert promoter to see if this event (or a similar) could be held around the mansion in conjunction with a concert in the future.
  • Forestry Conference - September 28-October 2.  Their field day will be Friday, September 29, with events in and around the Mansion. Greg would be interested in establishing an ongoing tree planning process, and wondered if the PNW-ISA might be able to help find tree experts to help (perhaps as student projects).

4) Other

  • Kiosk - There's a new Starbucks kiosk at the start of the Sammamish River Trail.  Norah requested input about the kinds of information that should be presented there.  She suggested a map of Marymoor, and some information about events at Marymoor (though not the kind of information that needs updating all the time).  Also, a map of the trail and major landmarks.  Greg suggested the Redmond Tourism Board might be willing to fund such a map.
  • The Marymoor Community Gardeners Association has donated 1735 lbs. of produce to the Food Bank as of today.
  • Automatic external defibrillators are going to be installed in the park, starting August 29th at 1:00.  The first will be near the Subway shop.  Eventually there will be four, with the others being installed at the mansion, near the velodrome, and in the dog area.

Next meeting, Wednesday, September 27th.

These notes were made by 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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