Hat ‘n’ Boots
Hat ‘n’ Boots is a roadside attraction and landmark in the Georgetown neighborhood of Seattle, Washington. Built in 1954 as part of a Western-themed gas station, it is billed as the largest hat and cowboy boots in America. To preserve this landmark, the City of Seattle moved the Hat ‘n’ Boots to the new Oxbow Park in December 2003.
Hat ‘n’ Boots appeared in the films National Lampoon’s Vacation (during the opening credits) and Hype!.
Freemont, Lenin, a Troll & the Rocket
Fremont is a neighborhood in Seattle, Washington. Originally a separate city, it was annexed to Seattle in 1891. Named after Fremont, Nebraska, the hometown of two of its founders, L. H. Griffith and E. Blewett, it is situated along the Fremont Cut of the Lake Washington Ship Canal to the north of Queen Anne, the east of Ballard, the south of Phinney Ridge, and the southwest of Wallingford.
Sometimes referred to as “The People’s Republic of Fremont” or “The Artists’ Republic of Fremont,” and at one time a center of the counterculture, Fremont has become somewhat gentrified in recent years. The neighborhood remains home to a controversial statue of Lenin salvaged from Slovakia by a local art lover who was teaching in the area at the time. After the 1989 fall of the Communist government, he brought the statue to Fremont with money raised through a mortgage on his house. In addition to Lenin is the Fremont Troll, an 18-foot-tall (5 m) concrete sculpture of a troll crushing a Volkswagen Beetle in its left hand, created in 1990 and situated under the north end of the Aurora Bridge. The street running under the bridge and ending at the Troll was renamed Troll Avenue N. in 2005.
In addition, signs throughout Fremont give such helpful advice as “Set your watch back five minutes” and “Throw your watch away.” Other landmarks include the Fremont Rocket, a Fairchild C-119 tail boom modified to resemble a missile, and the outdoor sculpture Waiting for the Interurban.
Since the early 1970s some Fremont residents have been referring to their neighborhood as “The Center of the Universe” (which also appears on a large “Welcome” sign). An unofficial motto “De Libertas Quirkas” (“Freedom to be Peculiar”) appears in brochures and websites about the area.
Gas Works Park
Gas Works Park in Seattle, Washington is a 19.1 acres (77,000 m2) public park on the site of the former Seattle Gas Light Company gasification plant, located on the north shore of Lake Union at the south end of the Wallingford neighborhood. Gas Works park contains remnants of the sole remaining coal gasification plant in the US. The plant operated from 1906 to 1956, and was bought by the City of Seattle for park purposes in 1962. The park opened to the public in 1975. The park was designed by Seattle landscape architect Richard Haag, who won the American Society of Landscape Architects Presidents Award of Design Excellence for the project. It was originally named Myrtle Edwards Park, after the city councilwoman who had spearheaded the drive to acquire the site and who died in a car crash in 1969. In 1972, the Edwards family requested that her name be taken off the park because the design called for the retention of much of the plant. In 1976, Elliott Bay Park was renamed Myrtle Edwards Park.
The Space Needle is a tower in Seattle, Washington and a major landmark of the Pacific Northwest region of the United States and a symbol of Seattle. Located at the Seattle Center, it was built for the 1962 World’s Fair, during which time nearly 20,000 people a day used the elevators, with over 2.3 million visitors in all for the World Fair. The Space Needle is 605 feet (184 m) high at its highest point and 138 feet (42 m) wide at its widest point and weighs 9,550 tons. When it was completed it was the tallest structure west of the Mississippi River. It is built to withstand winds of up to 200 miles per hour (89 m/s) and earthquakes of up to 9.1 magnitude, which would protect the structure against an earthquake as powerful as the 1700 Cascadia earthquake. The tower also has 25 lightning rods on its roof to prevent lightning damage.
The Space Needle features an observation deck at 520 feet (160 m), and a gift shop with the rotating SkyCity restaurant at 500 feet (150 m). From the top of the Needle, one can see not only the Downtown Seattle skyline, but also the Olympic and Cascade Mountains, Mount Rainier, Mount Baker, Elliott Bay and surrounding islands. Photographs of the Seattle skyline often show the Space Needle in a prominent position, even appearing to tower above the rest of the city’s skyscrapers, as well as Mount Rainier in the background.
The EMP Museum (formerly known as Experience Music Project and Science Fiction Museum and Hall of Fame or EMP|SFM) is a museum dedicated to the history and exploration of popular music, science fiction and pop culture located in Seattle, Washington. The Frank Gehry–designed museum building is located on the campus of the Seattle Center, adjacent to the Space Needle and the Seattle Center Monorail, which runs through the building.
The EMP Museum was founded by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, and opened its doors in 2000. EMP struggled financially in its early years; as a result, Allen established the Science Fiction Museum and Hall of Fame (SFM), which opened in 2004 in the south wing of the EMP building. When SFM opened, EMP and SFM were treated as separate museums, and visitors had the option of purchasing admission to one museum, or, at a higher cost, a combined admission to both. In 2007, after mounting criticism, EMP|SFM ended the separate admissions policy and began charging a single admission price for entrance to both the EMP and SFM wings. Although the Science Fiction Museum as a permanent collection was de-installed in March 2011, a new exhibit named “Icons of Science Fiction” is scheduled to open in June 2012.
Pike Place Market
Pike Place Market is a public market overlooking the Elliott Bay waterfront in Seattle, Washington, United States. The Market opened August 17, 1907, and is one of the oldest continually operated public farmers’ markets in the United States. It is a place of business for many small farmers, craftspeople and merchants. Named after the central street, Pike Place runs northwest from Pike Street to Virginia Street, and remains one of Seattle’s most popular tourist destinations.
The Market is built on the edge of a steep hill, and consists of several lower levels located below the main level. Each features a variety of unique shops such as antique dealers, comic book and collectible shops, small family-owned restaurants, and one of the oldest head shops in Seattle. The upper street level contains fishmongers, fresh produce stands and craft stalls operating in the covered arcades. Local farmers and craftspeople sell year-round in the arcades from tables they rent from the Market on a daily basis, in accordance with the Market’s mission and founding goal: allowing consumers to “Meet the Producer”.
Seattle Great Wheel
The Seattle Great Wheel is a giant Ferris wheel located on Pier 57 on the banks of Puget Sound in Seattle, Washington, United States. With an overall height of 175 feet (53.3 m), it was the tallest Ferris wheel on the west coast of the United States when it opened on June 29, 2012.
Seattle was the third city in North America to offer a wheel of this design, following the Niagara SkyWheel at Clifton Hill, Niagara Falls, Canada, which is also 175 feet (53 m) tall, and the larger Myrtle Beach SkyWheel in South Carolina, which is 187 feet (57 m) tall. The Seattle wheel is the only one of the three to be built over water.
The Seattle Great Wheel has 42 climate-controlled gondolas, each able to carry up to eight passengers, giving a maximum capacity of 252. The 12-minute ride extends 40 feet (12 m) out over Elliott Bay.
Chief Seattle statue
A notable feature of the square is the life-size statue of Chief Seattle by local sculptor James Wehn. The copper statue shows Seattle with his right hand extended as if in greeting. The statue stands atop a stone base that was designed to serve as a fountain, although the fountain has been turned off and on over the years.
Commissioned in 1907, Wehn’s design suffered from multiple poor castings and was finally sent to New York for casting. The statue was formally unveiled in Tilikum Place by Myrtle Loughery, a great-great-granddaughter of Chief Seattle, on November 13, 1912. The statue was the first commissioned in Seattle and only the city’s second piece of public art in all.
After unsuccessful proposals to move the statue to locations such as Duwamish Head, Denny Park, and Pioneer Square, the statue was removed for cleaning in anticipation of the Century 21 Exposition of 1962. Wehn objected to a proposal to turn the statue around so it would face the then-new Seattle Center Monorail. After its cleaning, the statue was returned to its original location and orientation, facing Elliott Bay.
By 1980, the statue had turned green. A local taxi driver attempted to clean it himself, scratching it and exposing its original bronze color. A subsequent restoration revealed that the statue had been painted in gold leaf.
Ballard Locks & The Fish ladder
The Hiram M. Chittenden Locks is a complex of locks that sits at the west end of Salmon Bay, part of Seattle’s Lake Washington Ship Canal. They are known locally as the Ballard Locks after the neighborhood to the north. (Magnolia lies to the south.)
The fish ladderat the Chittenden locks is unusual—materials published by the federal government say “unique”—in being located where salt and fresh water meet. Normally, fish ladders are located entirely within fresh water.
Pacific salmon are anadromous; they hatch in lakes, rivers, and streams—or, nowadays fish hatcheries—migrate to sea, and only at the end of their life return to fresh water to spawn. When the Corps of Engineers first built the locks and dam, they changed the natural drainage route of Lake Washington. The locks and dam blocked all salmon runs out of the Cedar River watershed. To correct this problem, the Corps built a fish ladder as the locks were constructed to allow salmon to pass around the locks and dam.
Alki Beach is the principal tourist attraction at Alki Point. It features sand, saltwater, bungalows, and unique local restaurants. It is generally not a popular swimming beach, owing to the cold waters of Puget Sound. It offers stunning views of the Olympic Mountains and downtown Seattle from all points. Alki Beach is also a place to “people watch” or get a tan, and it provides a casual environment for people to gather and hang out. There is access for wheelchair users and roller-skaters. In the summer months, Alki Beach becomes crowded, epecially on weekends. Sunbathers, volleyball nets, and barbecues fill the beach while teens cruise in eye-catching cars.
The miniature Statue of Liberty at Alki Point is a replica of the Statue of Liberty on Liberty Island in New York City. It was donated by Reginald H. Parsons and Seattle Council of The Boy Scouts of America in 1952. Many tourists mourned the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center at the site. This statue may also represent Alki Point which was originally called New York-Alki by John Low and Lee Terry who claimed the settlement and named it after New York, their state of origin.
Alki Beach has been a venue for summer concerts every August since the early 20th century. The local music scene draws tourists and locals alike. Live music can also be found at Kenyon Hall which features a Wurlitzer Theater Pipe Organ. The Historic Admiral Theater also presents live performances on occasion.