Friends of Marymoor Park

July 26, 2017 Meeting Summary

-- see also the June 28, 2017  meeting summary

1) Introductions

Norah Robinson, King County Parks – Marymoor Park lead; Michael Hobbs, FOMP Secretary, Webmaster; Shane Berry, AEG Live; Travis Roach, TOPS; Glenn Eades, Eastside Audubon, neighbor; Laura Hall, Marymoor Community Gardener's Association, FOMP Board; Lee Anne Hughes, Event Coordinator for CHOMP!; Phil O’Sullivan with CHOMP; Markus Kunz, Executive Director of Teatro ZinZanni; Marciel Whitney and Travis Roach, TOPSs Tennis Facility; Jeff Hagen, ‎Sports Program Administrator at City of Redmond; Debbie,  rower and neighbor

2) Teatro ZinZanni

The dinner circus theater company is very excited to be at Marymoor for an interim six-month run at Marymoor Park. They will use a historic Belgian Spiegeltent on the Recreation and Event Area pad.  They will have a few smaller tents as well, and a couple of modular buildings to house things like the kitchen.  Capacity of the dinner Spiegeltent is 285 people; it is very much smaller than the Cirque du Soleil or Cavalia tents, and their footprint at Marymoor will be significantly smaller than at their old location on Mercer St. in Seattle, since offices, costume shop, etc., will not be located on-site as they were in Seattle.  They expect 40-70 cars per performance, with performances typically running Wednesdays-Sundays, 7-10pm, plus a very few noon matinees.

Markus is working with Norah on low-impact signage, focusing on clarity in directing people to the site.

Michael asked about the lighting around the tent, citing issues with Cirque du Soleil, where they had the tent BRIGHTLY LIT all night. Markus assured us that TZ will not be lighting the tent for promotional purposes. He will be mindful of our concerns when establishing the necessary safety and security lighting.

Time is short to prepare for their October 19th opening, so Norah may email out some plans to the FOMP board for review as they are developed.  Their run is scheduled to end April 30, 2018.


CHOMP! is back for their 3rd year at Marymoor, with Dinner in the Park on Friday, August 18th at 6 p.m., and the CHOMP! Eat Well Live Well Fair on Saturday, August 19th, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Dinner in the Park features a five-course dinner prepared by local celebrity chefs using locally grown and sourced foods - a Farm-to-Table meal.

The cost of $75 per ticket includes beer, wine, and cider.  Musical entertainment will be provided by Delvon Lamarr and David McGraw, members of the Delvon Lamarr Organ Trio.   Proceeds will support the International Rescue Committee of Seattle/SeaTac New Roots Program that helps to establish local gardens in neighborhoods of newly settled refugees.

Dinner will be held in a large tent just south of Clise Mansion, with a capacity of ~200 diners.  Parking will be in the Clise Mansion lot.

CHOMP! Eat Well Live Well Fair will have a variety of program areas placed around the west and south sides of Clise Mansion:  Farmer Village will have a farmer's market, plus a variety of activities and information. Community Kitchen will feature cooking demonstrations, and will have a $14 Community Plate meal available, prepared by chefs from several local restaurants.  There will also be beer, wine, cider, food trucks, and more.  Earth School, presented by the Wilderness Awareness School will, will have classes and information about everything from natural soaps to natural herbs to mushrooms, and more.  The Upcycle Bazaar features the work of local makers, converting the old into the new as an alternative to recycling or trashing.  Some of this will be participatory build-your-own stuff!  And Tiny Home Town will demonstrate ultra small dwellings that allow "living off the grid", as well as ways to make your own apartment or home more sustainable, plus a chance to get advice from experts.

There will be music from Caspar Babypants, Mikey Mike the Rad Scientist, Honcho Poncho, Delvon Lamarr Organ Trio, and Ozomatil, plus a Garden Hot Sauce Competition and the Backyard Chicken Pageant (yes, bring your chicken to the park to face the judges)

Admission is free, parking is $5, but there will be a free accessible shuttle from Overlake Transit Center. Parking will be in Lot D with overflow to the concert parking area; entrance will be from Lot D, though shuttle passengers will enter from the north Clise entrance.

They are hoping for 3000-5000 attendees Saturday.

Laura asked if there could be some linkage between CHOMP! and the Marymoor Community Gardeners. Laura had lots of ideas, and will get together with CHOMP! staff to coordinate.

4) CIP/Project/Facilities Updates

a) Birdloop – Dennis has rented equipment and is arranging the crew to rip out the short section of path that is so very bad. This will happen late July or early August.  EAS still planning to plant many plants in Snag Row. Laura and Glenn are planning to get together to discuss pruning/clearing the area of Snag Row along the north edge of the Community Gardens.   Michael mentioned that a bobcat was seen early in the morning of July 3, on the birdloop path near the EAS shed.

b) Community Garden – completely full with a wait list. Their apiary suffered from vandalism, as well as ingrowth of blackberries into the apiary. MCGA would like to move the bees to either the SW corner of the Memorial Garden, or the SE corner of the Garden. Another possibility would be near the composting area at the SW corner of the Garden. The SW Garden corner is their preference. They’d like to move during the next few weeks, so Norah would like any concerns to be raised quickly. 

c) TOPs Tennis Facility – TOPs is working on a proposed partnership agreement with KC Parks.   The tentative proposal would effectively be aimed to be revenue-neutral for the county.  Over the 40 years of the proposed agreement, TOPs would be responsible for all operational expenses of the building, and while Parks would provide maintenance of areas near the building (i.e. mowing, gardening, parking lot maintenance, etc.), TOPs would pay an annual fee aimed to cover those expenses.  Additionally, TOPs and Parks would split the maintenance costs of the outdoor courts.  While TOPs would not be paying Parks for the lease of the land, they would be providing the public good of an affordable tennis facility with public (non-membership) court rentals, and especially a facility that offers affordable youth programs for ages 3-18, with financial assistance for families with demonstrated need.

In terms of outreach to underprivileged, – see TOPs website: 5-10% of the kids get subsidies. But they are also low fees and no membership dues, so it is relatively affordable to everyone. Laura asked if FOMP could see their application for financial aid. Laura also suggested translating it to Russian, Somali, and Spanish. TOPs is also budgeting for transportation to open up opportunities for kids who can’t get to Marymoor by themselves.

Glenn asked if existing outdoor players will be annoyed by the new management of the outdoor courts. Consensus was that tennis players will probably be happy to have access to indoor court rentals which would make up for partial loss of outdoor court availability. Except from 4-6 pm, TOPs is proposing to have two of the four outdoor courts still open to the public at all times.

Jeff Hagen (City of Redmond) gave great praise to TOPs for their long-standing work in Redmond. Laura reiterated that the concerns of FOMP are based simply about whether this is the best use of the last available spot in the park. Michael reiterated that the fact that this is a large building in the Park (that is, loss of open space; a building can be placed on any land, and does not need to be in a park) is our biggest concern.

Debbie expressed strong support for the project. She is involved with SRA, and she’s excited that there may be another sports facility in the park that would have a similar relationship with the park as SRA has.

d) Maintenance items

  • Asphalt repairs in Lot K. Trees and vegetation have been removed. Pavement damaged by tree roots will be cut out and replaced. The trees will not be replaced with the same kind of trees, but Norah would like some kinds of plantings to go in. She’s asking for suggestions, but notes that the absence of trees has been very nice since the trees blocked the lighting in the parking lot.

    The culvert and drainage system will be reevaluated after maintenance is competed. The culvert, as is, may be sufficient once proper function is restored. If not, then the main culvert will need to be replaced.
  • Noxious Weeds – Purple Loosestrife was sprayed last week, as is required.  Laura asked what chemicals were used, and Norah said she'd investigate.

e) Synthetic turf replacement – On soccer 1-4, original turf from 2006 is being replaced. Project on schedule, due to be complete by August 15.

f) Parking machines will need to be replaced, as current ones are falling apart, and parts are having to be fabricated. New machines will need to be compatible with bank that is contracted with King County. This will have to go out to bid. Need is desperate, but Procurement processes are slow-moving.

g) Cultural resources – Test plots were done along the north edge of the Off-leash area between Lot G and the Pet Garden. No archeological artifacts were found. So, EAS can proceed with plantings in Snag Row. Glenn mentioned that the archeologist not only wanted to know where plantings would go, but what plants. This raised the question of whether there are more favored and less favored plants? Getting a list of undesirable and/or desirable plants would be better than having to have a proposed plant list approved. Norah will try to get the archeologist to attend the September FOMP meeting. Meanwhile, protocols are being developed, and Norah will run those past the FOMP board by email.

h) Sammamish Rowing Association – proposal for and Eagle Scout project to build shelter for kids waiting to be picked up. Norah's preference would be for it to be near the street where it can be seen.

i) ST3 Link Light Rail - Construction could start in late 2019. No details are yet available about things like construction access, or even a definitive ruling on whether the line will run elevated or on ground level through the park.

5) Other

  • Jeff Hagen reported that the City of Redmond must return the Old Redmond Schoolhouse community center building to the school district  for use as a preschool.  The city has leased the Washington Vocational Tech School building immediately NW of the east entrance to Marymoor Park as a partial replacement.  It has about half of the space of the existing community center, but should be able to accommodate many of Community Center users.
  • Laura requested that the question of cut-through traffic on Marymoor Way be prioritized for attention.  Going forward, the problem is going to go from really bad (today) to outrageous, with the ST-3 Light Rail station coming in.  Michael pointed out that even the new Community Center announced by Jeff will probably result in people driving through the park to access the building (which is NOT in the park).  It may become necessary to block the road, though this is a policy decision that will have to come from high up in King County.  Laura very much wants to ensure that the park is not sacrificed to through-traffic.  This would be a major safety risk, and would also substantially degrade the park experience.

Next meeting, August 23, 2017, in CLISE MANSION

These notes 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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