Editor's Note: Sun Blocks

The joys of summer are almost here

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Sun Blocks
Last year I discovered a secret beach. Well, I didn’t discover it so much as I heard about it from some friends. When I finally went to check it out with my husband and the boys, we were blown away. There it was, this tiny public beach in the heart of one of the city’s major neighborhoods. It couldn’t have been more than 100 feet long, replete with sandcastle-ready sand, waves lapping on its shore and—best part—not a single person in sight. It was an urban oasis.
Though summer is synonymous with camping, rafting trips and weekend stays at the cabin, I will argue any day that cities are made for summer. Restaurants throw open their glass garage doors and dust off the sidewalk patio tables for the best nightly people-watching shows in town. Taverns and bars thump with the energy of young, skinny-jeaned hipsters into the wee hours. Even our city’s biggest summer event, the Seafair Torchlight Parade, is an after-dark procession down Fourth Avenue.

June through September, our city comes alive like no other, mainly because summer is the reason we all put up with the rest of the year. Locals live for the extra hours in the day we seemingly get this time of year. Tourists come here braced for rain and leave thrilled to report on the endless sunshine to the folks back home. Couples plan outdoor weddings with (relative) confidence that it won’t rain on their parades. And all this is ours, without that nasty humidity our Midwest and East Coast friends must endure.

Yes, summer in this city of wonderful neighborhoods is sublime. Nearly every weekend there’s a different, appropriately themed festival going on (seafood and Vikings in Ballard! Rock shows on Capitol Hill!). Our quirky-cool micro cities ,with their town centers and pride-of-place T-shirts, are like yellow brick roads leading to restaurant back patios, where you feel miles away, or to little gems like that secret beach (which I’ve been sworn to—well, more like threatened to—secrecy about revealing its location). We hope this issue’s Summer Guide becomes your urban road map for a terrific season. Here’s to everything you’ll discover.

Until next month,


Originally published in June 2010