January 29, 2013
Revelers can sip, snack and shop as the Downtown Issaquah Wine Walk series returns.
The popular winter and springtime event launched last February to attract people to downtown merchants even as the weather turns gray and soggy. Organized by the Downtown Issaquah Association, merchants host musicians, and offer sips from Washington vintners and hors d’oeuvres, during the monthly event that launches Feb. 1.
Though the event is designed to appeal to oenophiles — the 1-ounce wine pours remain limited to the 21-and-older crowd — creativity is showcased in arts-focused downtown, too. Highlights at the opening event include demonstrations by master glass blower Lenoard Whitfield at artbyfire and artEAST’s latest exhibit, “Stitch,” at UP Front Gallery.
September 4, 2012
See stone carvers in action as StoneFest comes to ArtWalk and downtown Issaquah.
The annual event — presented by longtime local business Marenakos Rock Center — includes public events Sept. 7 at ArtWalk and Sept. 8.
Participants can see stone artists conduct carving demonstrations and display works at the historic Issaquah Train Depot, 50 Rainier Blvd. N., during ArtWalk. The free event runs from 5-8 p.m. at downtown Issaquah businesses and venues.
The following day, passers-by can admire the works and talk to stone carvers.
StoneFest is a gathering for people involved in building, designing, carving and creating objects with natural stone. Find the StoneFest daily schedule at www.stonefest.org.
July 31, 2012
The Downtown Issaquah Association’s ArtWalk returns from 5-9 p.m. Aug 3. The community is invited to enjoy art, music and more.
Dozens of artists will present their work along Front Street and in the shops. New this month, ArtWalk founding members Michael Johnson and Greg Spranger will display and sell their artistic creations at Pedestrian Park, at the southwest corner of Front Street and Sunset Way.
July 3, 2012
The Downtown Issaquah Association’s next ArtWalk is from 5-8 p.m. July 6.
Stroll the various businesses that host local and regional artists, including Artists in Action at the artEAST Artist Alley, and a wood carver at the historic Shell Station. ArtWalk venues include artbyfire, Centennial Park, Confetti Cupcake, Christian Science Reading Room, Eastside Audiology, Experience Tea, Fischer Meats, Hailstone Feed Store, Illuminate, Issaquah Valley Senior Center, Issaquah Library, Mills Music, Museo Art Academy, Opus Bank and Thrive.
Scattered along the walking route are musical acts, including Acoustic Couti, Sold Only As Curio and the Kaleidoscope School of Music.
Event maps will be available in front of the library, 10 W. Sunset Way, and the historic Shell station, 232 Front St. N.
To accommodate the ArtWalk, Northwest Alder Place will be closed from First Place Northwest to Front Street from noon to 10 p.m.
Learn more at www.downtownissaquah.com.
June 5, 2012
Stepping inside Denny Croston’s world is as easy as walking onto his driveway.
The Issaquah artist’s home embodies all of the whimsy of his repurposed scrap metal sculptures. A visitor is immediately greeted by Poncho — a rusty gentleman with wrench arms and a “cute butt” — as well as army-helmet turtles and a horseshoe cactus before making it to the front porch. But the true wonderland is tucked behind the house.
Croston’s backyard is an eclectic medley of curiosities and creations. A huge red railroad car sits on the left, flanked by antique light posts and traffic signs. It took Croston two years to restore the 1921 Northern Pacific Railway caboose to its former glory and it’s the crown jewel of his railroad memorabilia collection.
Behind it, a shed teems with scrap-metal findings from junk yards and estate sales from all over Washington. A tree “yarn bombed” by local artist and friend Suzanne Tidwell casts shadows over the neatly trimmed hedges and fishpond on the right, while flowers made out of tractor parts peek through the greenery. Heaps of junk, rusting in the sunshine, punctuate the well-tended lawn.
May 29, 2012
Head outside for the next ArtWalk on June 1.
The spring and summertime ArtWalk transforms local businesses into art galleries for the evening and enhances the vibrant arts scene in downtown Issaquah.
Participants can enjoy art, music and community spirit in downtown Issaquah. Watch artists in action at the artEAST Artist Alley. Share personal poems at the Poetry Machine. Listen to live music by Preheat, Ogre, Train Wreck and The Greg Glassman Trio.
Organizers expect more than 30 artists to present works on Front Street, at the Issaquah Train Depot, 50 Rainier Blvd. N., and at the Issaquah Valley Senior Center, 75 N.E. Creek Way.
Participants can find event maps in front of the Issaquah Library, 10 W. Sunset Way, or at the Hailstone Feed Store, 232 Front St. N. Learn more about ArtWalk and the Downtown Issaquah Association, which organizes ArtWalk, at www.downtownissaquah.com.
May 1, 2012
ArtWalk returns May 4, as the Downtown Issaquah Association launches the spring and summer tradition.
The event is from 5-8 p.m. along Front Street and Sunset Way. The event is held the first Friday of each month, May to September.
Artists from local high schools add a special feature to the season’s first ArtWalk, Downtown Issaquah Association Executive Director Karen Donovan said.
Look for the young artists’ works at the historic Hailstone Feed Store, 232 Front St. N., and the former Stella’s Vintage Clothing, 195 Front St. N.
ArtWalk participants can also listen to live music. Kaleidoscope is due to perform in front of the Issaquah Library, 10 W. Sunset Way. Hear the Issaquah Singers at the Issaquah Valley Senior Center, 75 N.E. Creek Way. Participants can also listen to music at the feed store.
Downtown restaurants, businesses, galleries and other venues plan to participate as ArtWalk launches its 11th season.
April 3, 2012
Oenophiles can sip and stroll through town as the Downtown Issaquah Wine Walk series concludes for the season April 6.
Organized by the DownTown Issaquah Association, merchants host musicians, and offer sips from Washington vintners and hors d’oeuvres, during the monthly event. The inaugural Downtown Issaquah Wine Walk occurred in February.
“We got a lot of people down here that had either never been to downtown Issaquah or hadn’t been down here in a long time,” association Executive Director Karen Donovan said. “I’ve gotten a lot of great feedback from people saying how much they enjoyed it. They enjoyed the music and the appetizers and the wine, of course.”
January 17, 2012
Adding to its list of events to draw more visitors to downtown, the DownTown Issaquah Association announces First Friday Wine Walk from 5-8 p.m. Feb. 3.
Wine Walk, following other popular events such as ArtWalk and a zombie invasion, will feature boutique wine tasting at six locations up and down Front Street.
“It should be fun,” said Karen Donovan, the association’s executive director. “I’m excited.”
Wineries will include Lodmell Winery in Walla Walla; Woodinville’s Smasne Cellars; and, Castillo de Feliciana. Several Wine Walk locations will feature live entertainment to include acoustic guitarist “Uncle Phil” Hansen; guitarist and composer Angelo Pizarro; vocal group Bodacious Ladyhood; and, pianist Meg Mann.
December 13, 2011
The leader of the DownTown Issaquah Association resigned Dec. 6 — after only a few months on the job and less than a year after board members replaced the organization’s longtime executive director.
Executive Director Annique Bennett joined the organization as cultural events coordinator in early spring and then, months after another employee left the organization, board members promoted Bennett to the top spot.
“I have not been empowered by the DIA board to accomplish the goals they set for themselves or for me,” she said in a resignation emailed to association board members. “I have enjoyed working with each of you and wish you the best of luck on your community wine events and marketing.”
The announcement came a day before a major event on the DownTown Issaquah Association calendar, a Christmas tree lighting ceremony at the historic Hailstone Feed Store.