KidsQuest Childrens Museum Opening Next Week


photo courtesy KidsQuest

KidsQuest Children’s Museum is scheduled to open its doors January 31st in its new location in downtown Bellevue at the corner of NE 12th Street and 108th Avenue NE (the former Rosalie Whyle Museum of Doll Art).

If you never had an opportunity to visit the museum’s former Factoria location, this is a “must do” activity for parents and children. The museum’s indoor and outdoor hands-on interactive exhibits are designed for exploration and experimentation with a focus on science, technology, engineering, art and math. If you’ve driven by lately the big rig truck cab is visible through the windows on the north side of the building. There are also three classrooms and an art studio with a kiln.

The museum isn’t just for kids  –  KidsQuest will continue to offer their popular “Recess on the Rocks”  –  after hours access for adults to enjoy the exhibits and activities accompanied by food and cocktails. You must be 21+ to play. The museum is also available to rent for evening events and dinners.

Downtown is Bellevue’s fastest growing neighborhood with new apartments and condos scheduled to break ground this year. What’s happening – and what’s about to happen – in downtown Bellevue’s real estate entertainment scene? I live and work in downtown Bellevue – contact me to find out what’s planned for 2017.


What’s In Your Bag?

first-aid-kitThe sun is out, temperatures are well above freezing, we’re half way through the football season (GO HAWKS!) and the holidays are just around the corner. Also just around the corner is the potential for wind, heavy rain and even snow that could leave many without power, access to transportation, stores and services.

You can’t predict this winter’s weather, but you can take steps to be prepared in the event you find yourself in a dark house with no power for hours or days. Now is the time to put together a “go bag” or basic survival kit that has more than flashlights (no doubt with dead batteries) and bottled water. Plan to assemble an emergency kit with enough supplies to help you get through 3 days.

  1. FIRST AID KIT  –  the basics should include bandages, gauze, antiseptic wipes,       anti-inflammatory and pain reliever medications (Tylenol or Advil), antacid, antibiotic ointment. Prescription medications should be clearly labeled.
  2. FLASHLIGHTS – multiple flashlights or camping lanterns and extra fresh batteries.
  3. CANDLES  –  don’t forget lighters or matches.
  4. BATTERY POWERED RADIO  –  having access to area information (and entertainment) is important  –  some battery powered radios have outlets for charging cell phones.
  5. BOTTLED WATER  –  stock plenty of water for family members and pets. Sports drinks are good to have for replenishing electrolytes.
  6. FOOD  –  stock nonperishable, easy to prepare snacks and meals (dried fruit, peanut butter, granola bars, canned vegetables, nuts, canned tuna, soup, etc.). DON’T FORGET TO INCLUDE A CAN OPENER. If you have a gas cooktop in your home, the burners can be lit with a lighter or match to facilitate cooking.
  7. SPECIAL ITEMS FOR INFANTS  –  formula, food, diapers & wipes, baby pacifiers
  8. PET SUPPLIES  –  pack food and water, extra leashes, any medications your pet may need, contact information for your vet.
  9. CASH  –  if there’s a widespread power outage ATMs and credit card machines won’t operate. Stores may be able to operate on a limited basis with generators but will be cash only. Keep cash on hand to purchase food, buy gas for the car.
  10. IMPORTANT DOCUMENTS  –  have hard copies or digital access to medical records, driver’s license, social security numbers, etc.
  11. HYGIENE PRODUCTS  –  toothbrush, toothpaste, soap, feminine products, body-cleansing wipes, hand sanitizer, toilet paper & tissue.
  12. ADDITIONAL ITEMS  –  space limitations may impact what you can keep on hand. It helps to know where extra blankets or sleeping bags are stored. If you have children it helps to keep them entertained or distracted from the situation with coloring books, cards, puzzles, etc.

If you live in the city you may be able to walk to services and amenities during a power outage but remember, elevators won’t be working, so you may find yourself confined to the upper floor of a building or face walking dozens of flights of stairs to exit your building. Its definitely worth it to plan and prepare for the worst and hope that bad weather and power outages skip us this winter.

Another New Bellevue Elementary

The Bellevue School District has been growing by 500-600 students annually, a growth rate expected to continue through 2025. The Bellevue School Board voted in September to purchase an 8 acre parcel of land from Safeway, Inc. in the newly formed Spring District for a yet-to-be-named Elementary 19. The site is located in the midst of the multi-use Spring District neighborhood and will serve children in the growing downtown core,      Bel-Red district and other current and emerging neighborhoods east of I-405..

Elementary 18, a new elementary school on Wilburton Hill, is currently in the planning and permitting phase. The school will be located next to the district’s Educational Service Center and across the street from the Wilburton Instructional Service Center. Not yet named, the school will serve students from around the downtown and Wilburton areas, relieving overcrowding at Enatai, Woodridge and Clyde Hill. Attendance areas have not yet been defined. The district will hold community meetings throughout 2016 to discuss attendance areas and transition ideas for students and families.