Beyond the Green- A Nod To Irish Culture on St. Patrick’s Day In Seattle

Guinness PintTop of the morning to you, Seattle.  Today, March 17th is the designated feast day of St. Patrick, the man credited with taking Christianity to Ireland through the symbol of the shamrock and leaving us all with St. Patrick’s Day.  With roughly 34 million Americans laying claim to Irish ancestry, today is also a day where people gather in crowds to celebrate the Irish culture in pubs, parties and parades.

This past weekend, Seattleites marched in the parade and dashed in costumes in the annual F5 St. Patrick’s Day Dash, 50,000 people gathered to watch the Chicago river glow a bright emerald green, and today millions have lined the streets in New York, to cheer on the 250,000 people marching up 5th Avenue in the annual St Patrick’s day parade that kicked off in 1762.

This year, however, we wanted to look beyond the leprechauns, the Guinness gulping, the shamrocks and the “Kiss Me I’m Irish” tees of standard St. Paddy’s Day partying to give a nod to the richness of Irish culture that is sometimes overlooked in the sea of green that tends to dominate these celebrations and offer you a different kind of celebratory To Do:

Read anything from this list of great Irish literature:
Bennion & Deville Seattle Ireland is a country that has suffered through decades of poverty, famine, and degradation its literary history is rich with novels that tell of these woes.  Tonight enjoy a pint of Guinness or an Irish coffee while kicking back to devour one of these fine works from some of Ireland’s finest literary masters:

Anything by Oscar Wilde
Ulysses by James Joyce
Walter Macken’s The Silent People
John McGahern’s Amongst Women
Molly Keane’s Good Behaviour
Colm Toibin’s  The Blackwater Lightship
Edna O’Brien’s The Country Girls
Beckett’s Waiting For Godot

Toast to Influential Politicians of Irish Decent:
Don’t forget the Kennedy’s & Ronald Reagan,

Watch a film featuring a great Irish actor:

Great Irish Actor Peter O'Toole. Image source IMDB
Great Irish Actor Peter O’Toole. Image source IMDB

Don your green sweats and scour your Netflix for anything starring:

Peter O’TooleLawrence of Arabia, Ratatouille, The Last Emporer
Daniel Day LewisLincoln, There Will Be Blood, Gangs of New York, The Boxer
Colin FarrellSaving Mr. Banks, The Recruit, Miami Vice, Winter’s Tale
Pierce BrosnanGolden Eye, Die Another Day, Tomorrow Never Dies, Mrs. Doubtfire
Gabriel ByrneThe Usual Suspects, Miller’s Crossing, Enemy of the State
Liam Neeson (who, in the true spirit of the day, even once worked as a forklift operator for Guinness) – Taken, Schindler’s List, Star Wars, Batman Begins

Unwind listening to one of these great Irish musicians:
U2, Van Morrison, The Cranberries, Sinead O’Connor, Snow Patrol, The Dubliners, Flogging Molly, Dropkick Murphys, Johnny McEvoy, The Script
And how could we forget the soothing ballads and orchestral works of Enya.

Pick up a loaf of soda bread from one of these fine Seattle bakeries:
The Essential Baking CompanyBennion & Deville
Wallingford – 1604 N 34th St, Seattle, WA 98103
Madison Valley – 2719 E Madison St, Seattle, WA 98122
Georgetown – 5601 1st Ave S, Seattle, WA 98108
Macrina Bakery & Cafe
Belltown – 2408 1st Ave, Seattle, WA 98121
Industrial District – 1943 1st Ave S, Seattle, WA 98127

And last, but certainly not least, be sure to drop by one of Seattle’s best Irish pubs for a cold pint and a bit of a jig!

Bennion & DevilleFado Irish Pub & Restaurant
Friendly atmosphere, popular with the after work crowd
801 First Ave, Downtown

Owl N’ Thistle Irish Pub & Restaurant
Opened in 1930, this Seattle landmark is an inviting and lively St. Patrick’s Day destination that is definitely going to be sporting some green on the dance floor tonight.
808 Post Ave., Downtown

Kells Irish Restaurant & Pub
Bennion & Deville If this sunny-ish weather holds up, dine on the view-boasting patio of the Pink Door and squeeze your way through Post Alley’s tourists for a cold beer and whirl around the crowded dance floor of this pub.  Kells’ Irish owners have a long-standing tradition of drawing the crowds to seriously celebrate St. Paddy and we’re sure tonight will be no different.
1916 Post Alley., Downtown/Belltown

Seattle local Peter Johnson is owner to several of Seattle’s favorite Irish stomping grounds including:
The Chieftain, 12th ave right across the street from Seattle University as well as Madison Park’s family friendly McGilvra’s; both of which draw friendly locals and regulars, serve up cold beers on tap and offer a menu that is a mix of traditional Irish grub (think  corned beef & cabbage, shepherd’s pie) and American bar staples.
The Chieftain – 908 12th Ave, Capitol Hill
McGilvra’s – 4243 E. Madison, Madison Park

Wild Rover Irish Pub & Restaurant
An eastside favorite, this Irish pub in Kirkland features several themed rooms including a billiards room, a fireplace to cozy up to and a library.
111 Central Way, Kirkland.

 

 

Honoring Dr. King

In the spirit of the holiday, today (and everyday) we encourage everyone to honor the great civil rights leader, Dr. King by giving back.  Martin Luther King Jr.’s commitment to non-violence and his powerful words inspired a whole generation and left us with a rich legacy of peaceful demands for progress.  In 1983 Martin Luther King Jr. Day became a Federal Holiday and was revisited in 1994 to become a day of service in order to encourage citizens to work towards Dr. King’s vision and pay tribute to him by giving back to their communities.

“Never, never be afraid to do what’s right, especially if the well-being of a person or animal is at stake. Society’s punishments are small compared to the wounds we inflict on our soul when we look the other way.” – Martin Luther King Jr. 
Bennion & Deville Fine Homes MLK day.
With this in mind we like to think of today as a day on, not simply a day off and having stumbled across this great list by Seven Principles on 52 PLaces to Volunteer in Seattle, we thought it only fitting to share.

Be inspired, choose a cause, enhance your community.

Happy Martin Luther King Jr. Day!

A Year In Solds!

To all of our wonderful clients and all those who’s email inboxes we’ve flooded, called on the phone incessantly, pestered for documents, signatures or answers, and everyone who has contribute their time, enery and skills, either in the development of or the support of Bennion & Deville, we thank you for another fabulous year.  May you enjoy good health, the love of your friends and family, and prosperity this coming year!

Here’s to a very happy new year!

-The Bennion & Deville team.

 SOLD IN 2013!

Bennion & Deville Fine Homes Inc, Seattle Homes
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Bennion & Deville Fine Homes Inc, Seattle Homes
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Baby It (was) Cold Outside

There’s nothing quite like waking up to find a fresh blanket of snow on the ground, kids shrieking in the streets, snow men and  angels dotting front lawns and knowing that winter is about to take a fun turn from those dreary Seattle winter days we’re used to(although this year we’ve been lucky) if work and/or school deal you the bountiful bonus of a snow day…particularly on a Friday.  Don’t be fooled, we know as well as anyone else the extreme trials and tribulations that a real snow fall can bring on a city, but this morning felt like a real bonus; a tiny reminder at the tail end of an insane couple of weeks to slow down, bask in the beauty of the moment, and catch up to the holiday season that seems to have gotten a headstart on us this year. And boy was it beautiful!

Moments of snowfall like this are few and far between for us Seattleites and thus we greet this kind of weather differently than other places.  Although generally unequipped, unprepared and a little nervous of the kind of havoc it could reap on our neighborhoods, commutes, and daily busyness (yes we said busyness, not business), we go to bed hopeful, and excited, and this morning, we were victorious!  …for a moment at least.

As the  rain has melted all but a few spots of the snowfall this morning, we thought we’d share just a few of the photos we captured of the winter wonderland we woke up to this morning incase you slept through the whole thing, or just want to relive it a little incase thats the only snow we’ll see in the city this year.

Happy weekending!  – The Bennion & Deville team.

Bob Bennion Bob Deville Windermere

 

Bennion & Deville Fine Homes Inc. Seattle snow day
Capitol Hill Home, Seattle

Bob Bennion Windermere Seattle Luxury Homes

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Bennion & Deville Real Estate agents Broadmoor community Seattle
Broadmoor Golf Course, Seattle

Madison Park Homes Bob Bennion Real Estate Windermere Agent

 

 

Seattle Holiday Roundup: Seasonal festivities & entertainment

Santa is soon coming to town so the Bennion & Deville Fine Homes team has lined up some of the holiday’s most festive happenings so we scrapped our weekend roundup this week for some more cheery celebrations to mark your calendars with!

11/23-12/4 – Festival of Trees Celebration
A treat for children and adults alike, Seattle Children’s Hospital uniquely themed and decorated designer Christmas trees will be on display for 2 weeks at the Fairmont Olympic Hotel so if you find yourself downtown be sure to drop in for some ooing and aaahing.
Free, Fairmont Olympic Hotel.
More Info Here

11/26-1/1 – 21st Annual Gingerbread Village
Seattle Sheraton Gingerbread Village Bennion & DevilleOne of this lists true treats (get it?), the Gingerbread Village at the Sheraton Seattle hotel will be bringing nursery rhymes to larger-than-edible-life this year as the culinary team teams with local architectural firms.  Take a stroll through, watch your little guys squirm to keep their hands to themselves and vote for your favorite at the end!
Free, 7 days/week, 24 Hours/day.
More Info Here

Photo via Seattle Curbed

11/27 – The Jimi Hendrix Birthday Tribute Concert
Although this rock legend and “Seattle born guitar-god” has been gone almost 40 years ago, his legacy lives on and his music remains as popular as ever.   This event will help raise money for The Hendrix Music Academy, an organization that provides music education to King County’s at-risk youth.
7:30 p.m. $20, The Vera Project.

11/29-12/3 – Christmas Ship Festival

Photo via West Seattle Herald
Image courtesy of West Seattle Herald

This Northwest tradition has been drawing Seattleites out of their cozy abodes, donning scarves and Starbucks red cups since 1949.  Watch from land or lake for a cheery celebration of twinkly lights, choirs singing carols on ships, and all around festiveness as crowds gather on shores around bonfires to anticipate the arrival of the ships.
Photo via west seattle herald.com
More Info Here

Seattle Nordstrom Santa Lane Bennion & Deville Fine Homes Inc.
Image courtesy of Seattle.about.com

11/29-12/24 – Nordstrom Santa Lane
Visit and take photos with Santa in his workshop outside the downtown Seattle Nordstrom at 500 Pine St.  Lucky kids in line will be treated to candy canes and cocoa, but if you’re on the fly, pop by the window and hear him “Ho, Ho, Ho,” to wishful kids in his grotto.
Seattle.about.com

11/29 – Macy’s Holiday Parade & Star Lighting
Macy's Parade, Bennion & Deville Seattle Fine HomesThis year’s parade begins at Seventh and loops through downtown with over 25 floats, 650 costumed characters, marching bands and other entertainers that welcome Santa coming to town, in very grand style – not to mention that it may be a welcome shopping break for worn out Black Friday bravers.  The Macy’s star will be lit for the season at 5pm with a fireworks display to follow!
9:00am-10:00am, 4th & Pine

11/29-11/31 – Seattle Center Winterfest
Seattle Center presents a winter wonderland of lights, an ice rink, ice sculpting, winter train & village, lively weekend performances.
More Info Here

11/29 – Carolers at Seattle Center Winterfest

11/29-12/29 – Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol
A scroogy Seattle tradition to drive home the real meaning of the Christmas season and what’s really worth celebrating.  Dubbed “The Granddaddy of all holiday shows” by The Seattle P-I, this one is a must!
(Every Tue, Wed, Thu, Fri, Sat & Sun until Dec. 29th)
ACT Theatre, $27 & higher
More Info Here

11/29-1/4 – Wild Lights at Woodland Park Zoo
Screen Shot 2013-11-27 at 2.59.43 PMA totally wild winter lights festival created in thousands of LED lights.
5:30-8:30pm, Woodland Park Zoo.
More Info Here

12/1 – Seattle Marathon Race Day
For all the brave souls that have spent the last several months training, or those who are simply looking to shed their extra thanksgiving load, the Seattle Marathon kicks off at 8:15 on Sunday morning at 5th and Harrison and will wind its way through city from downtown, over the I-90 floating bridge, along scenic Lake Washington Boulevard, and back through the Arboretum and Capitol Hill towards Memorial Stadium. Good luck runners!
More Info Here

Seattle Marathon, Bennion & Deville Fine Homes Inc

Thanksgiving; a short history

Thanksgiving has always been one of our favorite holidays. We love the coming together of family and friends over an amazing meal. This historic holiday has always meant so much to us, it’s a time to stop and reflect on the things we are grateful for in our lives. During this time of year people are willing to move mountains to see long lost family and friends, and to celebrate their time together.

PilgrimThanksgiving has always been synonymous with the first pilgrims who landed on Plymouth Rock. The day the pilgrims celebrated their first successful harvest in 1621 has always been revered as the first thanksgiving of the new world. However, Thanksgiving didn’t become a nationally recognized holiday until 200 years later.

It is because of the the writer, Sarah Hale, we have a nationally recognized holiday. For 36 years she wrote articles and letters pushing for the establishment of Thanksgiving as a nationally recognized holiday, on the same day, of the year for every state. In a letter to Abraham Lincoln she stated:

“You may have observed that, for some years past, there has been an increasing interest felt in our land to have the Thanksgiving held on the same day, in all the States; it now needs National recognition and authoritive fixation, only, to become permanently, an American custom and institution.”

During the height of the Civil War in 1863, President Abraham Lincoln heeded Sarah Hale’s advice, and Thanksgiving became a national holiday. Amidst all of the wreckage and heartache the American people had endured, a holiday of thanks was instilled. Lincoln declared the last Thursday in November to be dedicated as Thanksgiving Day. This was an act done to remind the American people, in the midst of tragedy, that there were still many things to be thankful for. The official document stated:

“It has seemed to me fit and proper that they should be solemnly, reverently and gratefully acknowledged as with one heart and voice by the whole American people. I do therefore invite my fellow citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are at sea and those who are sojourning in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next, as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens.”

Thanksgiving dinner Bennion & Deville Fine Homes Inc
Image courtesy of www.examiner.com

Thanksgiving remained on the last Thursday in the month of November for years, until the Great Depression. In 1939 FDR decided to change the national holiday to one week earlier to promote a longer shopping season before Christmas. His hope was that this extra week would help to increase revenue before the New Year.

In 1941 Congress finalized the date of Thanksgiving to the fourth Thursday in the month of November. This change was a compromise between Lincoln’s Thanksgiving, and FDR’s. Sometimes it is the last Thursday in the month, and sometimes it’s the Thursday before the last.

Thanksgiving Bennion & Deville Fine Homes
Photo courtesy or www.organicgardening.com

Thanksgiving has gone through a lot of changes in the past, in order to finally become the holiday we love so dearly today. This year take the time to unplug and truly be thankful for the people you are with. At Bennion & Deville Fine Homes Inc., we have much to be thankful for this year and feel so grateful for the relationships we have built over the years in the Seattle residential real estate world.

A Glimpse of Our City

Bob Bennion Bob Deville Windermere
Seattle’s infamous Dick’s Drive-In in the fall.

Appreciating Seattle
Halloween is tomorrow and the city is ecstatic for all the evening festivities with friends and family. As the Bennion & Deville team puts the finishing touches to our costumes and decorations on our homes, we’re also looking forward to the upcoming holidays and the prosperous new year ahead of us. More people are moving to Seattle due to the ideal location, growing opportunities for businesses, and the picturesque environment to raise a family or meet new friends. Home to some of the nation’s best universities, most idyllic neighborhoods, as well as an epicenter for industrial and corporate growth, Seattle is a city that continues to be one of the country’s top places to live. Though the team at Bennion & Deville Luxury Home is constantly aware and appreciative of this great city, even we can get lost in the hustle and bustle of the working week to really take a moment and be grateful for our environment. It’s always important, outside of the pride we feel for what we do at Bennion & Deville, to reflect and realize that the city of Seattle is an essential part of our lives.

Bennion & Deville Lake Union Sunset
Sailboat at sunset on Lake Union, Seattle.

A Glimpse of Our City
Though Seattle is known to many outsiders as a place where it always rains or the birthplace of “grunge” and strong coffee, the city has come from humble origins to evolve into one of America’s constantly progressing cities. Settled by the Suquamish tribe long before the city was officially declared a territory in 1869, Seattle is still home to some of the most breathtaking parks and nature reserves in the U.S. Whether you’re an avid hiker/explorer or just looking for a great place to escape from the city, you can find many of these euphoric places surrounding Seattle. Warren G. Magnuson, Kerry, and Volunteer Park are just a few of the many places where any resident or tourist can relax to fullest extent.

Navigating the often complicated balance between metropolis and small town, Seattle brings new businesses and an ever-expanding population to our city. In a place like Seattle, there’s something for everyone. A sports fan, especially during this

Seattle Seahawks, Bennion and Deville
Seattle Seahawks playing the San Francisco 49ers at Century Link Field.

season, is destined to find salvation at famous Century Link Field, home to the incomparable Seattle Seahawks. For those looking for an extraordinary experience, look no further than the Museum of Flight or the Experience Music Project Museum created by Microsoft’s Paul Allen.

Aside from the great restaurants, concerts, and events that grace this great city, Seattle is most of all home to a very unique, determined kind of people. The Bennion & Deville team meets and serves the great people of this city every day. Though we can all get lost in our work from time to time, it’s always comforting to know that we have Seattle to call our home.

Bennion & Deville’s Seattle Weekend Roundup: Getting into the Halloween Spirit

Bennion and Deville Luxury Homes, SeattleHalloween is always a very unique time of the year. While the leaves are changing and the cold air rushes into our neighborhoods, families and friends across Seattle are preparing their costumes and houses to celebrate this special holiday. Though we often consider Thanksgiving, Chanukah, or Christmas as more family-oriented holidays, Halloween has a special way of connecting communities throughout the city for one massive celebration. From children dressing up as superheroes, Disney Princesses or the latest pop culture inside joke to their parents escorting them about town, this fall season is ideal for spending time and having fun with family and friends alike. The Bennion & Deville team knows the importance of a holiday like Halloween. It’s more than just admiring great costumes, decorations, or collecting mountains of candy from around the city. It’s about interacting with the community and having the chance to appreciate the Bennion & Deville Luxuary Homes in your neighborhood.

Getting into the Halloween Spirit
The weekend before Halloween is always exciting. Final preparations are being made on costumes and houses around Seattle are putting the finishing touches on creating an authentic “haunted house” experience. Once the final steps have been taken to ensure a successful Halloween, take the time to check out these recommended Bennion & Deville events coming up this weekend.

Haunted Trails at Bastyr University 

Bennion & Deville Seattle Halloween Events
Haunted Trails at Bastyr University

Looking for an authentic, terrifying Halloween thrill? Haunted Trails at Bastyr University on Friday and Saturday (10/25 – 10/26) is the must-go event for anyone bold enough to venture through their shocking experience from 7pm – 11pm. Located on the Kenmore Campus of Bastyr, Haunted Trails has five main events including Haunted Woods, Hades Labyrinth, Circus of Horrors, Cemetery Hill, and Mummy’s Tomb. With tickets starting at $20 and all proceeds benefitting Bastyr’s study-away programs, Haunted Trails is certainly a can’t miss experience for those seeking out a real Halloween event, if you dare.

Pumpkin Push, Run Scared – Benefit Events

For those wondering what to do this Saturday and Sunday morning, there are two charity runs/walks that will surely help those who need it most this Halloween.

  • Pumpkin Push, a 5K run/2 mile walk, is in its 44th year and will take place on Saturday at 8am starting at Seward Park. The event’s proceeds will directly assist health care at Neighborcare Health for 8,000 homeless patients. Participants are not only allowed but encouraged to wear costumes during the walk or run to win a prize for the costume contest at the end of the race.
  • Seward Park will also host the Run Scared 5K, 4K walk, and free kid dash on Sunday at 9:30am. All proceeds of this run will benefit The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. Run Scared will hold a costume contest (pets are welcome to dress up too) at the end of the race.

Stalker Farms 3 haunted attractions called plus a non-haunted corn maze.

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Seattle Fog

There’s two weeks left to truly get your scare on at Stalker Farms (Snohomish) popular haunted attractions: The Field of Screams, The Last Laugh and The Hunt for Zombies (think paint ball guns and a tractor ride).  For tinier tots, they also have family-friendly real corn maze lit only by the light of the moon.  With all the fog that has been rolling in over the last week or so, these wandering corn paths and creepy attractions are sure to be spookier than usual!  Open just Thursday through Saturday (October 24-26th, October 31st-Nov 2nd ) from 7-10pm, tickets are about $20 and can be purchased on their website.Stalker Farms, Bennion & Deville Fine Homes

Concerts

  • Friday – Okkervil River will serenading crowds with their Folk Rock sound at the Showbox at the Market.
  • Friday, Saturday FreakNight Electronic Music Festival will be taking place at Wamu Theater with headliners such as: Benny Bennasi, Baauer, and Datsik.

No matter what you end up doing this Halloween weekend, it’s the perfect opportunity to have some great family fun. Whether it’s going out to Batyr University for Haunted Trails or taking the family to Seward Park for a charity run, there is no shortage of means to prepare you and yours for a memorable Halloween night.

 

A French Affair

“LET THEM EAT CAKE” – Marie Antoinette.

Portrait of Marie Antoinette (1755-1793), Musée Antoine Lécuyer
Portrait of Marie Antoinette (1755-1793), Musée Antoine Lécuyer

F is for FUN, FOOD, and FETE, so we recommend donning your classic French flair (stripy shirt, mustache?) and celebrating La Fete National; the 1789 storming of the Bastille and the beginning of the end of the monarchy for France, this weekend at one of these pop-up neighborhood celebrations.

Madison Valley Bastille Day Bash
Madison Valley Bastille Day Bash

 

 

Madison Valley will be pulling out all the stops on Saturday for their second annual Bastille Bash Celebration and street festival with French inspired food and wine tastings,  live music, street performers, sidewalk sales and even a Marie Antoinette impersonator. Pro Tip: buy the wine passport for $20 and sip until you too have seen all heard all and forgotten all! 

Details: Saturday, July 13, on East Madison Street from 27th to 30th Avenue, from 3–8 p.m.

Post Alley’s famed Bastille Day 2013 Party For The Revolutionaries is bringing the heat for the 11th year running this Sunday with a Burlesque show, a performance from the Can Can girls, live music, a plentiful abundance of spirits and street food/French favorites including macarons, baguette sandwiches and an oyster shucking station.

Details: Sunday, July 14, Post Alley, Seattle 4-10 p.m.

Bastille Day Post Alley Bennion & Deville
Post Alley’s Bastille Day Fete

Other Seattle Bastille Day happenings via Seattle Met

-Bennion & Deville