EWG Posts 5 Tips for Healthy, Nutritious School Lunches

What our kids eat is critically important — especially in the middle of the school day, when good nourishment is key to learning. But it’s a tall order to prepare a meal that’s healthy, tastes great hours after you make it, appeals to your children and isn’t bad for the environment. Especially for busy parents on a weekday morning!

The kids may still be running through the sprinkler, but for us parents, back-to-school time is here, and along with it that nagging issue of school lunches. What can you put in that lunchbox that’s healthy, gentle on the environment and — importantly — that your child will actually eat?

The Environmental Working Group wants to help you feel good, not frustrated, about school lunches. So EWG staffers, including our in-house nutritionist, put together these tips to help you start the school year on the right foot for your child’s health and the environment — in just five easy steps.

Click here to learn more about each of these smart, doable tips for healthy, low-impact school lunches.


National Wildlife Federation Hosts Kids ‘Hike & Seek’ @ Seward Park

When fall arrives, how do you picture your kids? Will they be front and center in your snapshots jumping in leaves, taking nature walks and hunting for pine cones? Most likely they won’t. Studies show kids today spend far less time outdoors than their parents did—but time outside is crucial to children’s bodies, minds and spirits.

This fall, join National Wildlife Federation’s Hike & Seek and help keep healthy kids in the picture by spending a Saturday morning outside enjoying nature. Hike & Seek is part hike, part scavenger hunt, with educational and interactive stations, live wildlife displays and everyone’s favorite raccoon, NWF’s Ranger Rick!

Your local Hike & Seek adventure will be at Seward Park on September 17, 2011. Start time 9:00 am.

As soon as you register, you’ll receive a link to your personal online Participant Center so you can start planning your hike and have the opportunity to support the mission and fundraise.

This fall, picture your family joining Hike & Seek, and help get America’s kids back outdoors! You’ll be thrilled with what develops.

For more information contact Karoline Hurd at hike@nwf.org, or go to www.hikeandseek.org, or call 800-882-9919.

West Seattle In Motion Stats: 21 Tons of Carbon Saved

So here are some August bragging rights for you West Seattle.  Way back in 2006, a certain large neighborhood north of the ship canal *coughBallardcough* had a total of 890 participants for its In Motion program.  As of this week West Seattle now has over 900 participants! The program runs through October this year.

If you are a participant, log those trips.  If you are not a participant, go to the King County Metro sign-up page and join.  The benefits are six free Metro transit passes, a card which is good for discounts at West Seattle shops, an account where you can log your savings, and the new West Seattle Trails walking and bike map.

The program is part of the mitigation for the continuing work on the Alaskan Way Replacement Project and is funded, in part, by the State of Washington and King County.  The goal is to provide West Seattle residents with more choices for transportation and to reduce the number of single-car miles driven, which helps reduce the local carbon footprint.

This Weekend: Arts in Nature Festival @ Camp Long

Please join Nature Consortium at our 13th annual Arts in Nature Festival this weekend, August 20th and 21st. Nestled in the forested arms of Camp Long, this eclectic performance-based festival will bring a weekend of live music, dance troupes, aerial & fire performances, a Museum of Sound, interactive arts activities, and outdoor art installations. The event is a celebration meant to be shared with people from all walks of life.

There will also be performances by these artists:  For the schedule of performances, go to http://www.naturec.org/festschedule2011/

  • Side Saddle – Lelavision – The Cabiri – Christian Swenson – Hexaphonic 3 – Ama Trio – NorthWest Dance Syndrome – Ranger & The Re-Arrangers – Sixth Day Dance -The Beaver Deceivers – Dixie King Brass Band – The Early Music Guild – The Rabbit Stew String Band – Caspar Babypants – Giant Puppets Save the World – Billy & The Bouncers – Minor Dissonance – The Lonely Coast – And many more!

If you’re interested in volunteering and available on Saturday, August 20, or Sunday, August 21,  please call 206-923-0853 or email nancy@naturec.org.

A special feature of this year’s Arts in Nature Festival will be the Historic Clark Schurman painting, now framed and on display at the Lodge at Camp Long.

A generous donation by West Seattle framer Kay Rood has made possible the framing of a large Clark Schurman painting of Mt. Rainier for permanent display at Camp Long.

In 2006, Clark Schurman’s granddaughter, Laura Reason, donated the painting for Camp Long’s 65th Anniversary. Finally it will be on display in the main lodge of this city-owned park just in time for the Arts-in-Nature Festival. Seven other paintings capturing Schurman’s beloved mountains will be on display Saturday and Sunday in the alcove adjoining the main room of the Lodge.

“He was a natural-born artist and he loved mountains,” said Dee Molenaar, a painter and mapmaker who met Schurman in 1939.  Schurman, known as “The Chief,” was the chief guide from 1938 to 1941 at Paradise, a popular high point on Mount Rainier. As a climber, he sketched and painted his journeys into a book published by The Mountaineers in 1939.

Highland Park Spray Park Design Meeting @ the Park

Seattle Parks and Recreation invites you and your family to the 2nd design meeting for the Highland Park Wading Pool Conversion project. The design team will present preferred design concepts that are based on input received from the community at the first public meeting in May.

The meeting is Tuesday, August 23, from 6:30 pm to  8:00 pm at the park in Highland Park at 1100 SW Cloverdale St., see map below.

Identified in the Parks and Green Spaces Levy, this renovation project provides for the conversion of the existing wading pool into a spraypark.

Seattle Parks encourages you to come listen and give your thoughts on the design concepts for the Highland Park spraypark.


For additional information, visit http://seattle.gov/parks/projects/highland_park/pg_spray.htm, or contact Kelly Goold, Seattle Parks and Recreation, at 206-684-7021, or kelly.goold@seattle.gov.

Bicycle Triage: Free Tune-ups for White Center/South Park

 Bicycle Triage for White Center

Several organizations will be donating time and equipment for free bicycle tune ups for White Center-area cyclists Wednesday, August 24th, starting at 4:00 pm, next to DubSea Coffee, 9910 8th Ave. SW, in the Greenbridge community.

Anyone with some skill in bicycle mechanics would be appreciated to attend. This is a first event toward our ultimate goal of a non-profit bicycle shop in White Center. Want to have a more cycle-centric White Center and South Park? We do too! Many organizations partnered to plan this free event for families in our neighborhood. Hope you can come to “Tunes & Tune-Ups”.

Also, look for a monthly bike repair clinic on Sunday afternoons at Full Tilt Ice Cream, planned for September 2011.

Thanks to: Alta Planning+Design, BikeWorks, Cascade Bicycle Club’s Major Taylor Project, DubSeaBikes, King County Food & Fitness, Proletariat Pizza, Sustainable West Seattle, White Center Community Development Association and YES! Foundation.

For more information contact Ellie Weiss, at 206-860-1432, or Stu Hennessey, at alkistu@hotmail.com.

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Your Help Is Needed for Duwamish River Festival – Aug. 27

The Duwamish River Festival 2011 is coming soon – Saturday, August 27th and volunteers are really needed.

Make this event more meaningful to you and help us make it more successful, efficient and smooth. Sing up and volunteer for the Festival day.

There is a wide array of volunteer opportunities and most of the shifts are short (2 hours) but feel free to sign up for more than one shift (you shall receive a prize if you do!).

Check out the different ways you can help and sign up using this link  to Volunteer Link’s website (you have to sign up for a free account as part of the process) http://bit.ly/oPRYVd. Read more

Join us for our Annual Summer Picnic

Join the Sustainable West Seattle team for our Annual Summer Potluck at Lincoln Park.  Look for us in Lincoln Park at Shelter 3 at 7 p.m. Monday, Aug. 15.  We’ll set up the grill and provide condiments. Please bring your favorite summertime dish and your own cup, utensils & plates.  Shelter 3 is very close to the principal restroom facilities on the beach at the south end of Lincoln Park.

To add to the fun, Alki Bike and Board will be providing a few electric bikes and Alki Kayak Tours will be bringing paddle boards and kayaks.  All of these will be available to use throughout the potluck, free of charge.
We’ll also be using the occasion to celebrate our Sustainable Hero of the Year, Dean Michael Ryan of South Seattle Community College.
So come join some fun in the sun in one of the most beautiful places in West Seattle!

6th Annual Duwamish River Festival – SWS Will Be There!

down to the Duwamish Waterway Park, 7900 10th Avenue South in South Park, Saturday, August 27 for the 6th Annual Duwamish River Festival.

Sustainable West Seattle is one of the participants and we’ll be helping set up the festival from 9:00 am that morning and will be tabling and helping out when the Festival kicks into gear at noon through 6:00 pm.

Sign up for the Walk, Bike and Paddle events on Brown Paper Tickers.  This is a special 9:00 am event which begins at Seacrest Park in West Seattle’s Alki neighborhood.  You can walk, bike, kayak or standup paddle from Seacrest down the Duwamish Waterway to the Waterway Park.

The festival is free and will include live music, free lunch, kids activities, interactive booths,kayak and boat rides and more! Arrive in Seattle style and walk, bike, or paddle to the annual festival. Walk/bike/paddle participants receive an event shirt, a refillable water bottle, and a map at the start. Buttons will also be given at the Walk/Bike/Paddle finish line.

The Duwamish River Festival has been a summer favorite event in South Seattle since 2005, attracting hundreds of people each year.

Seattle’s Duwamish River is listed by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as a Superfund Site – one of our nation’s most toxic rivers.  The Duwamish River Festival is one way that the Duwamish River Cleanup Coalition/TAG ensures that River communities can learn about and comment on the River cleanup.

This year’s festival will feature updates on the Duwamish River Superfund cleanup, children’s art activities, kayak and boat tours of the river, local live entertainment and artwork, boat rides, free food, environmental health information, Bert the Salmon, healthy yard care, and more. Attendance is expected to be between 750-1,000 people throughout the day.

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Sustainable Ballard Monthly Gathering

Sustainable Ballard is holding their monthly gathering Monday, August 22, from  6:30 pm to 9:00 pm at the Sunset Hill Community Club, 3003 NW 60th St.

This month’s topic is Simple Living.

Learn helpful tips and strategies in saving money, energy, resources, and your sanity at this month’s gathering. Get the low-down on the benefits of a simpler, slower, and more authentic lifestyle in a light-hearted atmosphere. Topics covered: food, career, family & community, transport, emotional and physical health, and the health of the earth.

About the presenters:

Deanna Duke is a well-known sustainable lifestyle blogger who sets out creative and fun challenges for saving money. She will kick-off the meeting by sharing her projects. Her new book is due out shortly: The Non-Toxic Avenger: What You Don’t Know Can Hurt You. Her website is The Crunchy Chicken.

Jody Grage was born in Seattle 75 years ago and bought her house in Ballard in 1976. She grew up in a great family with little money. She is one of the original Sustainable Seattle people and helped inspire Sustainable Ballard. She was in a very early Voluntary Simplicity study group, too. Jody figured out at the age of 10 that it was easier to substitute for money than for time and has lived frugally ever since. She is active with the Green Party on the local, state, and national levels. She also spends time on vegetable gardening, needlework, and Norwegian folk dress.

Kathy Pelish co-founded Ballard’s sail transport non-profit, Salish Sea Trading Cooperative, which saves resources by using community-timeshared sailboats and free wind and tide to sail local goods from Port Ludlow to Shilshole. She’s also co-taught the Transition Town class series, which advocates a less-resource intensive lifestyle, and was instrumental in bringing out Dr. Kathy McMahon for her Fall 2010 West Coast speaking tour about managing the emotional impact of difficult economic times.