2012-13 Business Directory

August 6, 2012

Open publication – Free publishing

Issaquah Rotary Club’s Grape Escape grows in popularity

February 28, 2012

A vintner discusses his product with visitors to one of the previous Issaquah Rotary Grape Escape fundraisers. Contributed

Six years ago, the Rotary Club of Issaquah offered its first Grape Escape event. For four years, the event took place at one of the smaller venues in the local Hilton Garden Inn, said Rotarian and event chairman Scott McKorkle.

The event was conceived as a wine tasting. But the first events, while popular, featured only a handful of local wineries, maybe five or six, according to Lesley Austin, a Rotarian who has long been involved with the Grape Escape event.

How things change. Both McKorkle and Austin said the Rotary has put a major push behind Grape Escape, greatly expanding the offerings and tying it in with the Taste Our Town campaign featuring local restaurants, many of which will be represented at Grape Escape.

Proceeds from the evening will go to support the Rotary Club’s several charitable undertakings, most notably scholarships offered to students at Issaquah, Liberty and Tiger Mountain Community high schools.

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Issaquah Chamber of Commerce backs liquor initiative

October 25, 2011

Costco-backed Initiative 1183, a November ballot measure to loosen state liquor rules, has received support from the Issaquah Chamber of Commerce.

Matthew Bott

If passed, I-1183 calls for state-run liquor stores to close by June 2012. The measure also aims to require the state to license private enterprises to sell and distribute hard liquor, set license fees based on sales and regulate licensees.

Still, opponents said safety concerns remain about efforts to privatize the system and sell booze at more locations.

Local business leaders announced the endorsement Oct. 14. Election Day is Nov. 8, and King County Elections is mailing ballots to voters.

“The Issaquah chamber stands with our peers across the state in endorsing I-1183 as part of our collective goal to help support the Washington economy, encourage government reform and introduce competition into the marketplace within this industry,” chamber CEO Matthew Bott said in a statement.

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Issaquah Chamber of Commerce endorses Costco-backed liquor initiative

October 15, 2011

NEW — 6 p.m. Oct. 15, 2011

Costco-backed Initiative 1183, a ballot measure to loosen state liquor rules, received support from the Issaquah Chamber of Commerce, business leaders announced Oct. 14.

If passed, I-1183 calls for state-run liquor stores to close by June 2012. The measure also aims to require the state to license private enterprises to sell and distribute hard liquor, set license fees based on sales and regulate licensees.

Still, opponents said safety concerns remain about efforts to privatize the system and sell booze at more locations.

“The Issaquah chamber stands with our peers across the state in endorsing I-1183 as part of our collective goal to help support the Washington economy, encourage government reform and introduce competition into the marketplace within this industry,” chamber CEO Matthew Bott said in a statement.

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Diners can sample bargains during restaurant month

March 8, 2011

Eateries encourage diners to sample special offers and menu items during Issaquah Restaurant Month.

The inaugural dine-out event kicked off March 1, as more than 20 restaurants rolled out discounts and other treats for diners. Organizers said the monthlong celebration is meant to attract attention to local restaurants, and encourage residents to try fresh flavors.

The participating restaurants include longtime establishments and newcomers. Diners interested in checking out Issaquah restaurants during the event can nosh on barbecue and pizza one day, and nachos and lo mein the next.

“Each restaurant will offer a lunch and/or dinner prix fixe menu that represents the best of what that restaurant has to offer,” Diane Symms, Lombardi’s Italian Restaurants president and CEO, said in a release. “This is not a discount but rather an offer of quality and value for the community.”

Issaquah Restaurant Month is similar to events staged in Seattle and other major cities nationwide. The year-old Issaquah Restaurant Coalition, a trade group, coordinated and promoted the celebration.

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Sanelli, Graham

November 16, 2010

Sicily Sanelli and Nolan Graham, both of Issaquah, announced their engagement to be married Nov. 11, 2011.

The future bride, the daughter of Steve and Melinda Sanelli, of Issaquah, is a 2004 graduate of Issaquah High School. She works as a foreclosure assistant at Northwest Trustee Services.

The future groom, the son of Paul and Sally Graham, of Cle Elum, is a 1998 graduate of Cle Elum/Roslyn High School. He works at Lombardi’s Italian Restaurant.

Shuck your inhibitions at Issaquah Open Mic Night

June 22, 2010

Doug Browning plays the banjo, Fred Hopkins sings and plays guitar and Polly Blomster, Studebaker percussionist, joins in a recent open mic night. Contributed

Live music and local talent have found a good home in Lombardi’s, the new venue for Issaquah Open Mic Night. Open to all ages, the event offers musicians a chance to hang out and show off their skills.

“It’s a gathering for musicians and friends to play together,” said founding member Doug Browning, the emcee of the evenings.

He first got the idea while playing at an open mic night in Snoqualmie. He had been invited to the show by a friend, Fred Hopkins.

“He said to just come along and play the tambourine,” Browning recalled with a laugh.

Inspired by the evening, Browning decided Issaquah should have its own open mic night. After researching how to organize and stage one, and with some help from Hopkins, he approached local coffee shop Grimaldi’s, which agreed to host the event. An open mic night ran there for about a year before closing earlier this spring. It reopened April 26 at Lombardi’s, 695 N.W. Gilman Blvd.

“Public reaction has been so great,” said Lombardi’s manager Diane Symms. “It’s turning out to be a lot of fun.” Read more

Top 10 news stories of 2009

December 29, 2009

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Sisters Jennifer Davies, Julianne Long and Mindy Heintz (from left) retrieve belongings Jan. 8 from the toppled guesthouse at the home of their parents, Jack and Karen Brooks, beside Issaquah Creek in the 23300 block of Southeast May Valley Road. — By Greg Farrar

Growth slowed and the economy cooled throughout 2009. The watershed moments in Issaquah hinged on expansion and recession. Leaders broke ground for a major new employer, even while other businesses left town for good.

Issaquah began the first decade of a new century as a fast-growing city, a title the city held for years. As 2009 reached a close, however, officials pared the size of government to face the new economic reality.

From January floods to record July heat and brutal December cold, 2009 was jam-packed, but the year was never dull.

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Find harmony with your high tea

October 27, 2009

Put on your best and come sip tea for charity with the Issaquah Women’s Club at their Harmony & High Tea annual fundraiser at 1:30 p.m. Nov. 14.

Last year, the event raised $14,000 for local charities, said Mariann Crane, president of the women’s club.

“It is a wonderful event and so many people are so anxious to come back,” she said. “For anyone looking to give back to their community, it’s perfect.”

You can expect the superb snacks, like tea sandwiches with cucumber and cream cheese, chicken almondine, and ham and cream cheese; delectable sweets, like petit fours, lemon bars and shortbread cookies; fresh fruit; and, of course, fine teas in a variety of flavors.

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Flood cleanup to be costly, lengthy

February 17, 2009

When Issaquah Creek overflowed its banks six weeks ago, rising waters left the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery with at least $20,000 damage. Water damaged the hatchery foreman’s house and an office used by hatchery volunteers. Four inches of mud coated the hatchery parking lot.

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