U-District and West Seattle Farmers Markets Launch Incentive Passport Program and Stock New Spring Produce

The Neighborhood Farmers Market Alliance has launched a new incentive program at Seattle’s year-round farmers markets in the University District and West Seattle.

Collect at least 6 passport stamps by April 7th, 2013 to be entered into a drawing for gift certificates from Elliott Bay Brewery, Seattle Farmers Markets, Chaco Canyon, and more. Passports and passport stamps can be collected from the information booth at either market or at participating local businesses, including Elliott Bay Brewery, Husky Deli, Bakery Nouveau, and Chaco Canyon Cafe in both West Seattle and University District.

Odds of winning are great, thanks to the generosity of Seattle local business partners!

Featured at the West Seattle Farmers Market: Cascade Pies 

Apple, raspberry, blackberry, lemon poppyseed blueberry, blackberry lemon, cherry mocha, salted caramel apple.

Vegan options:  Pecan pie, peaches and crème, sweet potato. Savory: Veggie pot pie, coconut potato curry.

Featured at the U-District Farmers Market: Streetzeria wood-fired pizzas

Information from the Neighborhood Farmers Market Alliance website at http://www.seattlefarmersmarkets.org/. Follow link for more details on passport program and new produce available.

About The Neighborhood Farmers Market Alliance: The Neighborhood Farmers Market Alliance is a 501c3 non-profit organization committed to supporting and strengthening Washington’s small family farm businesses by creating and operating vibrant, successful neighborhood farmers markets. The NFMA organizes seven food and farm-focused farmers markets in Seattle: University District, West Seattle, Broadway, Columbia City, Phinney, Lake City and Magnolia. NFMA is a member of the Washington State Farmers Market Association and national Farmers Market Coalition and has been a leader in ensuring equal access to local, healthy food by promoting EBT at its markets since 1995.  Learn more at: http://www.seattlefarmersmarkets.org, visit us on Facebook andTwitter.

The Seattle Farmers Market Association (SFMA) also offers markets in Ballard, Madrona, and Wallingford. With a variety of local produce and foods, the SFMA markets mission is to support and strengthen Washington’s small farms and farming families, as well as the communities they serve.

The Not Yet Foundation shares the NFMA’s passion for preserving our local farmland as well as building healthy communities and has a special interest in supporting senior services.

‘Only In Seattle’ Chinook Book Deals for Georgetown are Valid Through January 29

As part of the Only In Seattle initiative to support Seattle neighborhoods and their small businesses, 15 businesses in Georgetown are offering unique deals to customers through January 29. Deals can be redeemed by downloading the free Chinook Book mobile app and presenting the Only In Seattle deal to merchants at each location. The participating businesses can be found on the Only In Seattle website. Note that Chinook Book exclusively extends these exciting offers for 30 days; deals must be accessed via the Chinook Book mobile app.

Participating businesses in Georgetown include:

‘Only In Seattle’ Event Today in Pioneer Square for First Thursday

Today, a total of 19 businesses in Pioneer Square will be offering unique deals to customers as part of an initiative to support local neighborhoods and their small businesses. The event is occurring in conjunction with First Thursday and offers unique deals for participants, which can be redeemed by printing and presenting your Only in Seattle coupon! You can also download the free Only in Seattle Chinook Book app for iPhone and Android, which extends the coupons for 30 days! The businesses participating include: 1000Museums,Al BoccalinoArundel BooksBack Alley Bike RepairCafe BengodiCafe PalomaCaffe UmbriaDelicatusFoxycut SalonGlasshouse StudioGrand Central Bakery & CafeIntrigue Chocolate Co.Klondike Penny’s Old Time Portrait StudioLaguna PotteryMarcela’s Creole CookeryPioneer PetSmith Tower Observation Deck, Temple Billiards, and The Globe Bookstore. In addition to the Only in Seattle and First Thursday events, Pioneer Square Holidays is hosting a Dogs on Parade dog costume contest starting in Nord Alley at 5:00 p.m. followed by a tree lighting ceremony in Occidental Park at 6:00 p.m. and ending with caroling by the Beaconettes in Nord Alley at 6:45 p.m.

Only In Seattle Presents Event In Chinatown/International District On Saturday, Nov. 24

Only in Seattle Sunday shines a much-deserved spotlight on small businesses in Seattle neighborhoods by offering the public great shopping deals through partnerships with businesses in participating neighborhoods.

The next event will be held in the Chinatown/International District neighborhood on Saturday, November 24. Other upcoming Only in Seattle events will bring special offers to Pioneer Square businesses on Thursday, December 6 (in conjunction with Pioneer Square’s First Thursday), and to Georgetown on Sunday, December 30. This initiative is part of the City’s continued push to encourage discovery and exploration of neighborhoods in Seattle.

“Buying gifts or experiences locally during the holidays is a great way to support our neighborhood businesses,” said Mayor Mike McGinn. “I hope that people will explore and support the unique stores and restaurants that we’re featuring in the Only in Seattle campaign.”  

Only in Seattle Sundays in Chinatown/International District on Saturday, November 24

Only in Seattle Sundays on Saturday, November 24 features discounts at 13 businesses, including: Chuminh Tofu, Fuji Sushi, Lam’s Seafood Market, Kobo, Momo, Oasis Tea Zone, Phnom Penh, Plus45Design, Seattle Pinball Museum, Shabu Chic, Uwajimaya, Wing Luke Museum, and World Pizza.

To view and redeem the monthly Only in Seattle Sundays deals, shoppers can download or print the Only in Seattle Sundays day-pass, available at http://www.onlyinseattle.org/ois_sunday.html. They can also download the free Chinook Book mobile app and present their print or electronic proof of participation at participating businesses. Additionally Seattleites are encouraged to follow Only in Seattle on Facebook and Twitter, where the City’s Office of Economic Development (OED) will be giving away prizes from select neighborhood businesses throughout the month.

Listen and Watch for Only in Seattle during the holidays

The Office of Economic Development is excited to announce three partnerships to further the reach of the Only in Seattle marketing campaign.

In an effort to publicize the Only in Seattle initiative and promote local neighborhoods, CBS Radio Seattle (KMPS-FM, KZOK-FM, KJAQ-FM & KNFQ-AM) is proud to announce a partnership with BECU. CBS Radio Seattle is creating an interactive marketing program that encourages audiences to “find the hidden gems” in our area. The campaign will be featured on CBS Radio Seattle starting December 3. CBS Radio and BECU will also support local community events involving Only in Seattle.

Traveling on Virgin America during the holidays? Be sure to look for our Only in Seattle video segment on Virgin America flights coming in and out of Seattle on the RedHOT travel video series, which features the hottest, hippest and best in the airline’s destinations and reaches over 1 million airline passengers per show. The Only in Seattle video will be featured for five months, from November through March.

Though a partnership with Chinook Book, all Only in Seattle deals for Chinatown/International District, Pioneer Square, and Georgetown will be available to all Chinook Book mobile app users. While the printable day-pass from OnlyinSeattle.org is good for one day only, the Chinook Book app extends those great Only in Seattle deals for 30 days. The Only in Seattle Chinatown/International District Chinook Book deals are valid November 24 through December 24. A free version of the Chinook Book app is available through the App Store and Google Play.

For the past two years Only in Seattle has captured the essence of Seattle’s neighborhoods and shared the unique stories behind each of the featured businesses. With Only in Seattle Sundays the campaign’s “buy local” mission is brought to life beyond the Only in Seattle website, www.onlyinseattle.org,  by inspiring people to take one day a month to discover and explore a new neighborhood or businesses they might not experience otherwise.

Seattle’s new ban on plastic shopping bags goes into effect July 1

With Seattle’s new ban on plastic shopping bags just 12 days away, Seattle Public Utilities (SPU) says it has mailed out more than 10,000 notices and made some 500 phone calls and in-person visits to local retailers, to make sure they are ready when the ban takes effect.

SPU has also prepared flyers, in 15 languages including English, with information about the bag ban.

The new ordinance, which was unanimously approved by the Seattle City Council last December, prohibits all Seattle retail stores from providing customers with single-use plastic carryout shopping bags, including those advertised as compostable, biodegradable, photodegradable or similar.

The goal of Seattle’s ordinance is to reduce waste — particularly, plastic litter. Plastic never disappears. It can harm animals and affect the food chain, especially in waterways and oceans. The Seattle bag ban follows similar ordinances in neighboring Edmonds (in effect since 2010) and Bellingham (approved early in 2011) where the ban on throwaway plastic bags also takes effect this July. Bainbridge Island and Mukilteo have followed suit with bans effective in November this year and January 2013, respectively.

“From our conversations with local retailers, and from what we have seen in other Washington cities that have adopted bans on throwaway plastic carryout bags, we are expecting a smooth transition when the new law takes effect here, July 1,” said SPU program manager Dick Lilly.“Most major stores, particularly grocery and drug stores where about 70 percent of plastic bags originate are already selling moderately-priced reusable bags to help their customers,” Lilly said. “Some stores are planning to give their customers free bags during the first couple days of the plastic bag ban.”

For $1 or less, there will be plenty of reusable bags available so shoppers can keep a reusable carryout bag or two in their cars, backpacks or purses ready when they need them. Having a reusable bag handy means buyers won’t need to pay the 5 cent fee required to get a large recyclable paper bag to carry groceries or other large purchases.

Shoppers can also watch for advertisements and in-store promotions by stores giving away free reusable bags or selling them at a discount to help customers obtain reusable bags. Seattle ban was spearheaded by City Councilmember Mike O’Brien who got the law passed late last year, giving retailers more than six months to adjust to the change, though shoppers may still see plastic bags at smaller stores since the city is allowing them to use up inventory purchased before the law was passed.

Plastic bag bans have also been approved by city councils in a dozen California cities, including Los Angeles last month, and Portland, Ore., a year ago.

In Seattle, SPU estimates that throwaway plastic carryout bags in the garbage fill 16 shipping containers sent to the landfill annually. Most of that waste will disappear as shoppers switch to reusable carryout bags, especially bags made of washable fabrics. Here are the key elements of the Seattle ordinance:

  • Single-use plastic merchandise carryout bags are banned. This includes plastic-like bags claimed to be compostable, biodegradable, photodegradable or similar.
  • Customers must be charged 5 cents per large paper bag. (Typically equivalent to large grocery bags — 882 cubic inches — with flat bottoms greater than 60 square inches.)
  • Large paper bags requiring the 5 cent charge must be a minimum of 40 percent postconsumer recycled fiber and the fiber content must be marked on the outside.
  • The 5 cent bag sale is taxable and must be shown on sales receipts. Retailers retain the revenue. Smaller bags may be provided with or without charge at the store’s discretion.
  • Thick plastic bags — 2.25 mil or greater — are deemed reusable and may be provided with or without charge at the store’s discretion.

More information including illustrated program-summary flyers in multiple languages and
answers to frequently asked questions (FAQs) is available on the city’s website at www.seattle.gov/plasticbagban.