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Fremont - Ballard: suggestions

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Vancouver, Canada
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Fremont - Ballard: suggestions

We have visited Seattle a few times already but would like to know the Fremont-Ballard area better. We are visiting again during the Easter week-end (mid-April) with 2 tweens. What would you suggests? places not to miss, great places to eat, shop, etc...? Thanks.

Seattle, Washington
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1. Re: Fremont - Ballard: suggestions

The two "nodes" for food/shopping etc. are around the Fremont Bridge - Fremont Ave. N. and N. 34th Street, extending a block or two to the west, north and east (including the Troll under the Aurora bridge at Troll Way and N. 36th St.) - and Ballard Avenue NW at NW Market St. in Ballard, again, extending several blocks in most directions. There are also some interesting shops and cafes along Leary Way, which is the main drag connecting Fremont and Ballard, but they peter out after a couple of blocks, followed by industrial-type land uses.

On Sundays, the Ballard farmers market (on Ballard Avenue) is usually one of the best in town; no idea if it will run on Easter (probably.)

I'm assuming you'll be driving down? Parking will be difficult in both areas, so you probably should bite the bullet and pay for parking just to make things simple.

You ought to walk along the ship canal in Fremont - really enjoyable path, and if you haven't visited the Ballard locks, spring is a great time - the gardens are terrific. If the weather's okay you might also enjoy having a look at Shilshole Bay - giant marina - and Golden Gardens Park, just to the north of the marina, with nice beaches and waterfront walks.

As for restaurants etc. - wow, where to start? Oh I know - start with breakfast at Senor Moose in Ballard - http://senormoose.com/ after which food will be less important, if ya know what I mean...

Edited: 01 April 2014, 15:38
Seattle, Wa
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2. Re: Fremont - Ballard: suggestions

Good advice above and I would also recommend walking the Burke-Gilman Trail to Gas Works Park for one of the best views of the city.

There are so many good restaurants in Ballard in particular...Bastille is great for Sunday breakfast or lunch; the food and ambiance are great and it's right in the thick of the farmer's market.

If you have a car and like views, check out little Sunset Hill Park. www.seattle.gov/parks/park_detail.asp?ID=252

Seattle, Washington
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3. Re: Fremont - Ballard: suggestions

You can tour the Theo Chocolate factory - https://www.theochocolate.com/factory-tour - or just visit the retail shop and sample various bars. And my favorite dessert restaurant is in the heart of Fremont, Simply Desserts. Awesome old-fashioned chocolate layer cake.

western WA
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4. Re: Fremont - Ballard: suggestions

The Fremont Market, also only on Sundays, is a big hit with teens. They have more of a flea market atmosphere and not just fruit and veg or expensive artists wares. Don't forget the Troll!

At Ballard, go out to Golden Gardens Park and see the Leif Erickson statue in the Shilshole Marina. If you stay to twilight, you'll probably see fire dancers. Bring a frisbee and hang at the beach for awhile with the locals.

Vancouver, Canada
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5. Re: Fremont - Ballard: suggestions

Thanks for all the great ideas. I'm taking notes!

Seattle, Washington
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6. Re: Fremont - Ballard: suggestions

Here are a couple of my posts on Ballard, where I live.

tripadvisor.com/…56891699

tripadvisor.com/…55640492

tripadvisor.com/…49699908

tripadvisor.com/…40453016

tripadvisor.com/…50395540

tripadvisor.com/…51427330

tripadvisor.com/…50304312

-K

Seattle, Washington
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7. Re: Fremont - Ballard: suggestions

The Sunday farmer's market in Ballard will be open as usual on Easter Sunday. They are closed on Christmas and New Year's Day when those fall on a Sunday.

…wordpress.com/ballard-farmers-market/

Seattle, Washington
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8. Re: Fremont - Ballard: suggestions

What are your kids interested in? I saw you posted last year that they were 9 and 12.

I don't know if the kids are interested in popular music so much yet (I was at 12-13 but not so much at 9-10). Saturday is Record Store Day. Of course it is an international event and many of the special releases for RSD appeal to collectors and are available widely in participating stores but if you are in Ballard on Saturday rather than Easter Sunday Ballard has two great record stores: Bop Street (perhaps the largest record inventory in the US at more than half a million records) and Sonic Boom. Sonic Boom has a strong emphasis on local and NW artists and there is always a lot going on for RSD. They are having an in-store performance at 6pm on the 19th. It is all ages but the band, St. Paul and The Broken Bones, is a new-soul band from Birmingham which perhaps would appeal to you more than the kids. Still they might find it fun to stop in for a listen if you are in Ballard before dinner time. Maybe they would be interested in some local music or a sonic boom tee shirt as a souvenir.

http://www.sonicboomrecords.com

http://www.bopstreetrecords.com/

Edited: 03 April 2014, 18:59
Seattle, Washington
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9. Re: Fremont - Ballard: suggestions

What else would be fun?

Ballard has a really great toy shop, Clover, and a very nice small bookstore with a kids's focus, Secret Garden. They have a regular series of author appearances there and they always have a lot of signed editions.

https://clovertoys.com/

http://www.secretgardenbooks.com/

There is also a really great game shop in Ballard: Card Kingdom. If the kids are into gaming at all you should stop by. It's got a large selection and there is a full calendar of events.

http://www.cardkingdom.com/

http://www.cardkingdom.com/

Vancouver, Canada
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10. Re: Fremont - Ballard: suggestions

Your suggestions are really cool Klsalas! Thanks so much. I don't know about my kids (you have their age right!) but my husband is going to love them!!!