Windstorm fells three dozen Issaquah Highlands trees

November 2, 2010

Issaquah Highlands residents lost trees in a fall windstorm last week, prompting the city and Issaquah Highlands Community Association to consider replacements for the fallen trees.

Residents said the Oct. 25 windstorm felled or damaged about three dozen street trees along 24th Avenue Northeast near Northeast Park Drive.

The city and community association plan to select a replacement species better suited to high winds.

Comedy Central features Issaquah Highlands’ unemployment ‘scapegoats’

October 19, 2010

Funnyman Stephen Colbert shined a spotlight on the Issaquah Highlands last week for a serious message about unemployment.

Colbert sounded the alarm about illegal helpers — scapegoats — “gobbling up our jobs” and causing unemployment to rise.

Scapegoats? No, actual goats.

Stephen Colbert, host of the cable news spoof ‘The Colbert Report,’ gestures at the end of a segment about landscaping goats in the Issaquah Highlands. Contributed

So, the goats hired to landscape the highlands trotted into the national spotlight. The piece — a “People Who Are Destroying America” segment for the Oct. 14 episode of “The Colbert Report” — highlighted the Issaquah neighborhood and Rent-A-Ruminant.

In September, a Comedy Central crew filmed a segment on the living lawnmowers. The crew also interviewed Russ Ayers, Issaquah Highlands Community Association landscape manager, for the piece.

“I had no idea what they were going to do with it,” he said.

The crew asked the highlands landscaping team to appear in the segment, but Ayers said the group decided to pass. Instead, Comedy Central turned to a Tukwila business, New Beginning Garden & Lawn Care, to portray landscapers edged out of business by hungry goats.

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Issaquah Highlands goats featured on ‘The Colbert Report’

October 14, 2010

NEW — 6 p.m. Oct. 14, 2010

The goats hired to landscape the Issaquah Highlands trot into the national spotlight in a segment on “The Colbert Report.”

The piece is scheduled to air as part of the satirical show at 8:30 p.m. Thursday on Comedy Central. Watch the clip here.

In September, a Comedy Central crew filmed a segment on the living lawnmowers. The crew also interviewed Russ Ayers, Issaquah Highlands Community Association landscape manager, for the piece.

The goats returned to highlands hillsides in June. The goats — more than 120 from Rent-A-Ruminant on Vashon Island — chomped through tall grass and invasive plants for several weeks.

Rent-A-Ruminant also provided goats to landscape the highlands last summer. The goats gained some notoriety as the ruminants in PEMCO Insurance’s “Goat Renter Guy” spot.

Highlands residents seek another dog park

September 7, 2010

The only off-leash dog park in Issaquah could be joined by another off-leash park, if Issaquah Highlands residents succeed in a grassroots effort.

Kandis Paden, a highlands resident and business owner in the community, spearheaded the drive through the highlands homeowners association. Paden and other members of the neighborhood Pets-n-Pals Committee aim to turn a slice of city land near Central Park into a dog park.

“We’ve been asking for this to happen for a long time,” she said. Read more

Goats return to the Issaquah Highlands

June 15, 2010

Residents of the Issaquah Highlands welcomed herds of goats into their backyards last weekend.

On June 11, 120 goats were rented and brought to the highlands to eat a half-acre field of weeds by 28th Avenue and Julep Street. The goats came in for the second year in a row as an alternative weeding method to using human labor.

“The first time we brought the goats in, it was very successful,” said Russ Ayers, Issaquah Highlands Community Association landscape manager. “It is much better than using people. Hiring man-labor costs around $35,000 and the goats cost about a quarter of that.”

Along with costs, using goats as an alternative to standard weeding methods helps reduce the carbon footprint of the highlands community.

“This whole thing was really about going green. This whole community is about going green,” Ayers said.

The goats arrived via trailer from Rent-A-Ruminant, located on Vashon Island, where they reside in winter.

As soon as the trailer’s doors opened, the crowd gathered around cheered as the goats poured out and made their way to the field to begin munching away.

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Help wrangle goats in the highlands Saturday

June 11, 2010

NEW — 2:05 p.m. June 11, 2010

Herders will unload goats in the Issaquah Highlands on Saturday morning, and the homeowners association needs volunteer wranglers to guide the rented ruminants from the trailer to the forage area.

The goats will be unloaded at about 11 a.m. Saturday near 28th Avenue Northeast and Northeast Julep Street, and then start munching invasive plants and unruly grasses. Temporary fences will separate wranglers and ruminants during the brief jaunt. No, the goats don’t bite.

Contact Russ Ayers, Issaquah Highlands Community Association landscape manager, at russ.a@ihcommunity.org, to learn more.

On the heels — or hooves, rather — of a successful goat landscaping effort last summer, the association rented ruminant landscapers again. Herds from Vashon Island and Eastern Washington chomped across highlands hillsides last summer.

Night of nibbles yields nearly $2,000 for food bank

December 8, 2009

The event attracted about 60 people to Blakely Hall for appetizers and wine. Photo by Dianne Brisbine

The event attracted about 60 people to Blakely Hall for appetizers and wine. Photo by Dianne Brisbine

A foodie fundraiser pulled in almost 600 pounds of food and $2,000 for the Issaquah Food and Clothing Bank last month.

Corks & Forks, organized by the Issaquah Highlands Wine and Cooking Club, brought together 63 attendees Nov. 13 for high-end nibbles, wine and a good cause. More than a dozen local businesses donated to the event.

Organizer Jen Jedda and her team staged the event after a successful Corks & Forks fundraiser held last year, when attendees raised $1,200 and donated more than 300 pounds of food to stock food bank shelves. Jedda said she believed the event could help the food pantry as the holiday season began and demand for donations climbs.

“We were overwhelmed at the amount in [monetary] donations and food contributions for the food bank we collected, as we didn’t know what to expect going into the evening” during the first event, Jedda wrote in an e-mail. “After the event, we received multiple requests to do it again.” Read more

Posh noshing will benefit Issaquah Food and Clothing Bank

November 5, 2009

NEW — 6 a.m. Nov. 5, 2009

Help the Issaquah Food and Clothing Bank — and sample some high-end nibbles — at Corks & Forks. The event returns for a second year at 7 p.m. Nov. 13 at Blakely Hall, 2550 N.E. Park Drive. Attendees raised $1,200 and donated more than 300 pounds of food to stock food bank shelves last year.

Corks & Forks, organized by the Issaquah Highlands Wine and Cooking Club, will feature appetizers, desserts and wines paired with the menu. Attendees will nosh artisanal cheeses, chorizo-stuffed dates wrapped in prosciutto, wild mushroom rolls with leeks, gruyère and fresh thyme, chocolate truffles and other goodies.

Tickets cost $30, and attendees are encouraged to bring nonperishable food items to donate to the food bank. The event will include a silent auction.

R.S.V.P. to the event by Monday. Learn more about the event — including how to buy tickets — at the events calendar on Issaquah Highlands Association Web site.

Goats arrive to landscape the highlands

July 14, 2009

Herds of rented goats began arriving in the Issaquah Highlands last week to landscape hard-to-reach areas. At right, a map shows the locations where the goats will graze. By Warren Kagarise

Herds of rented goats began arriving in the Issaquah Highlands last week to landscape hard-to-reach areas. At right, a map shows the locations where the goats will graze. By Warren Kagarise

Issaquah Highlands’ backyards will resemble barnyards for the next few weeks as goats landscape vacant land.

About 120 rented goats set to work July 6 on about a half-acre along 24th Avenue Northeast. Goats are nibbling high grass and invasive species, such as Himalayan blackberry and Scotch broom.

The first herd — from Rent-a-Ruminant, of Vashon Island — chomped across TV screens and YouTube in a lighthearted spot about goat landscapers for PEMCO Insurance.

Watch the four-legged landscapers work from three locations: South Pond, where goats will work on the hillside between the pond and homes on 24th Avenue Northeast; 1499 24th Ave. N.E., where a trailhead meets homes located above South Pond; and two trails that cross a large tract where goats began working July 11. Access points for the trails are at 30th Avenue Northeast at the west end of Harrison Street, or from 28th Avenue Northeast at Julep Street. Read more

Goats arrive to landscape Issaquah Highlands hillsides

July 7, 2009

UPDATED — 5:30 p.m. July 7, 2009

Issaquah Highlands backyards will resemble barnyards for the next few weeks as goats landscape vacant land.

About 120 rented goats set to work yesterday on about a half-acre along 24th Avenue Northeast. Goats nibble high grass and invasive species, such as Himalayan blackberry and Scotch broom.

The first herd — from Rent-a-Ruminant, of Vashon Island — nibbled across TV screens and YouTube in a lighthearted spot for PEMCO Insurance about goat landscapers.

Goat Landscaping In Highlands / July 7, 2009

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