Archive | December, 2014

The best kid-friendly New Year’s Eve celebrations in Seattle

31 Dec

With cocktail parties, fireworks and a mid-night kiss, New Year’s Eve has always been a big night for celebration. It is a night where young couples go out on the town to start their relations on a high note. Then, go to all-night parties where they wake up to have a champagne breakfast.

When those relationships grow, the couples get married and they children those New Year’s Eve out turn to having sparkling cider, tucking the kids in bed and watching one of the New Year specials on television.

On your way up to your bedroom the two of you think it would be nice to go out again for New Year but where can we go with our children? Wonder no more because below is a list of some of those kid-friendly celebrations.

  • Celebration lane USA at the Bellevue Collection is a week long running nightly from December 26-31. Celebration lane brings a parade to the sidewalks between Bellevue Square, Lincoln Square and Bellevue Place on Bellevue Way & N.E. 8th St. The shows start at 7:00 pm featuring brilliant light displays, bubbles raining down from the sky, dancing drummers, festive music and characters. Admission is free.
  • If you would like your children to experience how New Year’s Eve is celebrated around the world then the Children’s museum at Seattle Center is the place to go on New Year’s Eve. On December 31 from 11 am-4 pm you and your children can experience New Year’s Eve around the world by ringing in the New Year in such exotic place as India, Russia, Ethiopia, Romonia and a few other foreign lands as their clock strike mid-night. The children will be supplied with apple juice to toast with and participate in craft of each country during each hour long celebration.
  • First night in downtown Tacoma’s theater district is a festive night that starts at 6 pm on New Year’s Eve. The evening starts off with a parade with march bands, masks, costumes and giant puppets. Once the parade is over the evening keeps going as 20 stages around the theater district come to life with music, dancing, laughter and magic. The alcohol-free fun continues until mid-night on New Year’s Eve. While the outdoor festivities are free there is a 10-15 dollar charge to join the indoor party.
  • For those with older children you might venture on down to the Seattle Center where they can experience New Year’s Eve at the Needle. There the whole family can enjoy music, bands, a live broadcast and then the sight of the Space Needle erupting in a spectacular display of pyrotechnics to ring in the new year. If you plan to go remember to bundle up to ward off the cold and keep the kids close because of the large crowd. The evening starts at 8:00 pm until mid-night and admission is free.
  • Maybe you would like to treat the kids to a New Year’s Eve Hawaiian style without leave the confines of Tacoma. You can do that by taking them to Hawaiian holidays at the MOG (museum of glass). Start at 4:00 pm on December 31 they can experience fire dancers in the main plaza, enjoy Hawaiian dishes, get glass blowing lessons, enter a drawing for a Hawaiian vacation and flower leis for members. Regular museum prices apply to the festivities.

Dish drops Fox news

23 Dec

Saturday evening many Subscribers to Dish Networks had were disappointed when Fox News and their affiliated channels went dark. The blackout, which is still going, was a result of an impasse between the satellite TV provider and Fox while negotiating a new contract. According to spokespeople at Dish this breakdown is a direct result of Fox adding channels to the negotiations to try and increase the fees the satellite company has been paying for broadcasting rights.

“It’s like we’re about to close on a house and the Realtor is trying to make us buy a new car as well,” Warren Schlichting, Dish’s senior vice president of programming, said in a statement “Fox blacked out two of its news channels, using them as leverage to triple rates on sports and entertainment channels that are not in this contract.”

Fox news channel and the Fox business network have become the third network in the past three months to have stations pulled from Dish TV over negotiation breakdowns. The first was Turner broadcasting back in October and then CBS broadcasting earlier this month. Those two breakdowns in talks resulted in those networks pulling their channels on a temporary basis, 1 month and 12 hours respectfully, until the negotiations were resolved.

How long the blackout with Fox will last is hard to say with each side blaming the other for the impasse. According to Fox executive vice president Tim Carry they are offering Dish the same type of package deal that other carriers have agreed to purchase.

“How can I continue a relationship with someone who feels that they can be treated differently?,” Carry said. He blamed Dish for not evolving its business model: “There’s at the end of the rope of the pricing and marketing model they put in in 1993 and have not changed.”

Whichever side is more to blame for the blackout is unknown. The one thing that a certainty in this dispute is that it is the 14 million Dish subscribers at the ones that suffer from the lose.

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The best new bars in Seattle

23 Dec

Whether you call it a bar, a pub, a tavern, a saloon or the local watering hole getting together and having a drink has been a big part of our culture. Everything from wars to vacations have been planned in bars; we go, with co-workers, to bars after work to unwind and we even celebrate big events at bars. Our forefathers planned and designed our country over drinks at the local pub. When the Seahawks won the Superbowl there was a lot of celebrating at bars. With so much happening in bars it is a big deal when new ones open.

In the greater Seattle area there were several fine bars opened this year. Here is a partial list of some of the best:

  • After 3 years of operation Seattle-based micro brewery Lantern opened a tasting room; on May 1,2014; to serve their Belgian brews. There you can sit down and buy 4 ounces sample, pints or bottles of the fine Belgian ales and stouts. The tasting room is located at 938 N. 95th street in the Greenwood neighborhood of Seattle. The hours are Thursday 5 pm-9 pm, Friday & Saturday 4 pm-9 pm.
  • Damn the weather is a bar that opened in the historic Pioneer square area of downtown Seattle. The bar and eatery was open in June by local Bryn Lumsden. When you visit Damn the weather you are treated to a fine selection of beers, ciders, wines and cocktails. Of course since they also an eatery while you are there you get indulge yourself with a great selection appetizers and entrees. Damn the weather is located at 116 1st avenue where you can grace its doors from 4 pm-2 am. They also offer a happy hour from 4 pm-6:30 pm where they do offer discounts.
  • Elysian bar is the latest establishment opened, in May of this year, by the Elysian brewery that has been providing their fine creations to the greater Seattle area since 1995. When you grace the doors you can enjoy any one of 18 fine beers or specialty cocktails. They also provide both lunch and diner. The bar and restaurant is located at 1516 2nd avenue and opened from 11 am-2 am 7 days a week. One of the things you will first notice when you enter the establishment is a giant spiral staircase leading to the second floor that was home to original office of
  • Canterbury ale house isn’t exactly new but the was refurbished after closing last year. The grand re-opening of the establishment was in October this year. The ale house is located at 534 15th avenue east in the heart of Seattle. They are open from 3 pm-2 am Monday-Friday and 10 am-2 am on Saturday & Sunday. All ages are welcome up until 9 pm when it becomes a 21 & over bar. Saturday& Sunday they serve brunch starting at 11 am until closing.
  • The Comet tavern re-opened in March of this year down on pike street in downtown Seattle. They are open 12 pm-2 am daily providing traditional bar food and beers. The Comet offers 2 pool tables, pinball and skeeball with free pool from 4 pm-6 pm.
  • Mezcaleria Oaxaca opened in February of this year on Seattle’s capitol hill. When you visit the establishment located at 422 east Pine street you can feast on fine Mexican cuisine, margaritas and beers.

111 years ago the Wright brothers made a historical flight

17 Dec

Breaking news: December 17, 1903 at 10:35 am EST brothers Orville and Wilbur Wright flew into history here at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina. That was probably the headline on every newspaper across the country on that day 111 years ago. That was when Orville Wright made the first successful flight of a heavier than air craft. The flight only lasted 12 seconds and the flier travel 120 feet at an altitude of just a few feet above the ground. They made more flights on that day with the final one lasting almost a minute and traveling 852 feet at an altitude of 10 feet.

I found the control of the front rudder quite difficult on account of its being balanced too near the center and thus had a tendency to turn itself when started so that the rudder was turned too far on one side and then too far on the other. As a result the machine would rise suddenly to about 10 ft. and then as suddenly, on turning the rudder, dart for the ground. A sudden dart when out about 100 feet from the end of the tracks ended the flight. Time about 12 seconds (not known exactly as watch was not promptly stopped),” is an exert from Orville Wright’s diary.

The two brothers started experimenting with flying crafts in 1899 working in their bicycle shop in Dayton, Ohio. They worked with parts from their bicycles, cloth and wood to create their flier. By 1902 they had their first practical glider. After searching for an area to test their glider they settled on Kitty Hawk, North Carolina. Once they transported the glider there, they made over 700 successful flights. The success of the glider proved they were ready for the next step of powered flight. The problem was that they could not find anyone to supply them with a motor. So, it was back to their shop where the brothers crafted their own motor.

In 1905 the Wright brothers sent letters to both the English and American military proposing a test flight for an airplane that could carry personal a minimum of 50 miles. The British sent someone to witness a test flight but the United States turned the offer down. In 1908 the brothers did win a bid to supply the United States military with an airplane.

The Wright brothers could not have imagined just where that first flight would lead to in the next century. What would they think if they could see the commercial flights zooming to all corners of the Earth, the hi-tech stealth fighters and various spacecraft.

5 best grills for tailgating

16 Dec

No one is quite sure who was the first person to start the tradition of tailgating at sporting events, probably a parent rushing their child off to their game. Since that time it has become a big part of the total sporting experience. Getting to the game early having burger, hot dog, steak or your favorite pre-game food and sharing it with friends, family or just other fans. It has become so much of a part of the sporting event just about every venue has rules about tailgating and sponsors their own tailgating parties. CenturyLink is no exception with several rules for all Seahawks fans to follow when they throw their tailgating parties before the game.

One of those rules is that you can not use a charcoal grill in the stadium parking-lot. For some tailgating purest, that use charcoal grills, they might not like the rule much. Since their love of sports and tailgating out-weighs their love of charcoal grill they are willing to stand by the rule. The question is what propane/natural gas grill to buy for taking to the Seahawks games. The following is a list of 5 of the best grills for under 200 hundred dollars and big enough to meet your tailgating needs:

  • The Blacktop 360 HFI premium party hub grill/fryer isn’t your average port grill. With the different cooking surfaces and a warming plate it gives you the capability to please everyone in the group. Its circular 452-square inch surface provides you a grill, a griddle, warmer and a deep fat fryer that can also double as sauce pot. The Blacktop 360 also comes with a cutting board that attaches to it for a convenient preparation surface.
  • The Coleman RoadTrip LXX is one of the all time classics portable grills for all occasions. The 285-square inch cooking surface gives you plenty of cooking area for making all of your tailgating favorites. It has to separate burners that can come in handy if you need to prepare foods that cook at different temperatures. With the legs and wheels folded up the 36x18x12 inch 50 pound Coleman is extremely portable. Coleman also sells separate grill, griddle and stove grates that can be used on the RoadTrip grill.
  • The Smoke Hollow 28159K is a great portable to take to your next tailgating party. It has a 325-square-inch cook surface to provide plenty of cook area and 15,000 BTUs to ensure a good even heat. Just like the Coleman the legs and wheels fold-up for easy portability. The metal hook next to the burner controls assure easy access to your BBQ tools (preferably Seahawks themed).
  • If you do not have that much space the Stansport SS might be the grill for your tailgating needs. At only 10x10x15.5-inches it does require much space. It only weighs 5 pounds so carrying it is not a chore. The 129-square-inch cooking surface and 20,000 BTUs still give you plenty of area and power for all your tailgating needs. At under 100 dollars it might very well be the best choice for the budget minded.
  • At 12.8×12.8×11.5-inches and weighing a mere 4 pounds the Coleman 9940-A55 Roadtrip party grill is small and compact enough to fit in small spaces. It only provides 8,000 BTUs but the designed of this grill gives it a good flow that cooks just like a high output grill. It is also under 100 dollars so it will fit well in those on a tight budget.

A how-to guide to building your Seahawks fan outfit

14 Dec

You have followed the Seattle Seahawks for years. You watch or listen to every game where ever you happen to be at the time. You follow all the news, discus the games with fellow Seahawks fans, know the bios of all the starting players and have a blog dedicated to the team. For one reason or another the one thing you have not done is actually attend the game in person.

That is all about to change though as you have finally arranged your schedule and scored tickets. Your are so excited that you will have the chance to see all of your favorite team in person. You want to show off your pride in a way that lets everyone you bleed green, blue and silver. So, you rack your brain trying to figure out how-to make the perfect outfit that expresses your enthusiasm.

Jersey and off the rack gear

Your first thoughts are that you could just go to one 4 brick-and-mortar or the online Seahawks pro shop. Since the brick-and-mortar stores are all to far for you to go look around you go to the website. You look through all the pages and see jerseys,shoes, pants, hats and plenty of other fan wear for the dedicated Seahawks supporter. You tell yourself that while having a jersey and other forms of sportswear with the number of your favorite player or the team logo is a good start it is too ordinary for a fan of your caliber. So, you decide to get a few essentials but try to come up with other ideas to enhance your outfit.

Body paint, stencils and other body decorations

You think to yourself I have seen quite a few fans with body paint and temporary tattoos. So, you do a web search where you come along something a link that might make a great addition to your unique fan outfit. You click on the link to check out this body paint & stencil kit. As your reading about the kit you see ads for related items, such as, temporary tattoos, the eye black the the players wear, a blue & green wig and other types of body decorations. You mark the link for later reference but another idea occurs to you that just might make for a more unique display of your devotion.

Embroidery, bead-work and other clothing enhancements

It dawns on you have a jacket, pants, shirt and other clothing item in the team colors that you could customize to make your own unique outfit. You have a friend that is an expert at custom embroidery. You call them up and tell them what sort of design you have in mind They love your idea and suggest maybe adding some beads or jewels. The suggestions sound great so the two of you go to work designing your ultimate fan outfit.


There is one last thing you think of that will put the finish touch on your ultimate fan outfit. So, you do a search for jewelry and hit the jackpot with earrings, watches, rings and all kinds of items to “bling out”.

You end up doing a combination of all the above. When it is done you are pleased that you now have your own one-of-a-kind outfit to wear as you cheer on your team.

Sir Tim Berners-Lee speaks out on Internet access

14 Dec

Since the time when Sir Tim Berners-Lee first launch the World Wide Web in 1989 he has always made it known that created the Web to be open and equal for everyone. So, when the World Wide Web foundation’s annual Web index report came out Thursday Mr. Berners-Lee spoke out about the need to work on making the Internet and Web more accessible around the world.

It’s time to recognize the Internet as a basic human right,” Berners-Lee said. “That means guaranteeing affordable access for all, ensuring Internet packets are delivered without commercial or political discrimination, and protecting the privacy and freedom of Web users regardless of where they live.”

Mr. Berners-Lee seemed disappointed that in the 25 years since the introduction of Web his vision of everyone having access is still unfulfilled. Instead of all the people having access the report shows that approximately 4.4 billion, of the estimate 7 billion people in the world, still do not have access to the Internet. Most of those that do not have access are in poor undeveloped countries. Even in the United States Internet access is still only 75% meaning that around 80 million still have not Googled themselves.

While talking about the Web index Mr. Berners-Lee also took the opportunity to address some comments that Russian President Vladimir Putin made earlier this year saying that the Internet was a CIA project.

“The Internet is not a CIA creation,” Tim Berners-Lee, a London-born computer scientist who invented the Web in 1989 – the year that the Berlin Wall collapsed – told Reuters when asked about Putin’s CIA comment. He then added, “It was the academic community who wired up their universities so it was put together by smart, well-meaning people who thought it was a good idea.”

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A not so typical night at the casino

12 Dec

My evening started out with a trip to the local casino where I had a nice dinner at the buffet. Then it was off to do some gambling where I broke even. The friends that I went with were still gambling so i was patently waiting for them. That was when our evening turned horribly bad.

It was 8:30 and I was waiting for my friends and the alarms went off. At first I didn’t think much of it. There was some sort of announcement but nobody could understand what was being said and just kept playing. It wasn’t until we saw people walking to the exits and the poker tables being closed that we started to wonder what was going on. Then one of the security people walked over and tiold us to cash out be the casino was being evacuated. He went on to tell us that the storm had knocked a tree over right on a propagne tank.

We left the casino where we could smell the propagne leak and hear the sirens of the approaching emergency vehicles. Since our car was parked by the valet we went over to retrieve the keys but the valet office was locked down and no one cold retrieve their keys. Instead we were all ushered across the street so we were a safe distance away. Most of us all did as we were directed but as usual there were the few looking loos that wondered around in the street to see what was going on.

After a few minutes we were ushed farther away from the casino to another building where we were able to go inside where it was warm and out of the rain. It was about 9:30 when the announcement came that the people with cars in the parking garge could leave. That still left all the people that had their cars parked by valets and all the casino employees. It wasn’t for anout 45 minutes until the anouncement came that we could sign out our car keys. All the drivers got in line and signed for their keys. Since we were still at the alternate building we had to wait for the casino shuttle. By the time the Shuttle picked us up and took us back to pick up our cars it was 10:30.

It wasn’t quite the way that any of us expected to spend our evening.

best place to buy Seahawk gear

1 Dec

The Seattle Seahawks have been around for almost 40 years (1976) and went to their first Superbowl in 2005. On the national stage we were still a relatively unknown team that was still considered that little team in the northwest corner of the country. Then in 2012 a 3rd round quarterback named Russell Wilson lead the team on a great playoff run and became a rookie of the year contender that the Seahawk became a national team. Then when the Seahawks wan the Superbowl last year that national fan-base grew along with demand for team gear.

The best place for Seattle Seahawk gear is the Seahawks pro-shop. Whether your visiting the online site or one of the 6 brick & mortar store it is your ideal place to get everything Seahawks. Once there you can deck out the whole family as a 12th man or your favorite player, show off your Seahawk pride at home with Seahawks linens and artwork, Take your team pride on the road with Seahawks tailgaiting gear and much more.

The Sports Authority has 13 brick & mortar stores from Marysville to Olympia where the dedicated Seahawk fan can get the gear to show off their team pride. They have just about everything from caps to tables in that green, blue and silver motif that warms the heart of all Seahawks fans. If the brick & mortar stores can’t quite fill you needs you might try the online store for exclusive offers.

The Nordstrom family were the original owners of the Seattle Seahawks and their stores are still an excellent place to fulfill your Seahawk needs. You can visit any of their 4 brick & mortar stores or shop online to buy everything from socks to portable coolers.

Kohl’s has a several brick & mortar stores around the Puget Sound area or you can shop online. They have a great selection of apparel, jewelry and other accessories to please any Seahawk fan. You might want to try the online first for deals not available in the stores.

Lids has over a dozen brick & mortar stores throughout Washington and more across the United States & Canada plus an online site. At Lids they have a wide selection of apparel & novelty items for your all of your Seahawks needs.

With 10 brick & mortar stores throughout Washington & Oregon plus an online site Dick’s Sporting goods makes for a good choice for the Seahawk fan. You will find plenty of apparel, home decor, tailgating gear, jewelry and even something for the four-legged Seahawk fan. is a great place to shop for Seahawk fans. Just about anything the dedicated Seahawk fan could want will be found on the Webs largest shopping site.