Coop Tour, Kraut-Making, Chicken Butchering in Colman

The Colman Community Harvest invites our CD neighbors down to Judkins Park for some great FREE events this Saturday, October 8th. CLASSES ARE FREE, BUT SPACE IS LIMITED TO 8 PARTICIPANTS, so please RSVP if you are interested…

10 AM to 12 NOON: Chicken Coop Tour. 
Come take a self-guided walk in Colman to see four different coops, from ultra fancy and heated to tiny town-home chickens, anytime during this time frame (minimum time, probably 30 minutes). You’ll also get to see how easy it is to build green roofs for your rabbit hutch, meet a shy rabbit and learn about raising quail. The chicken owners will be able to answer all your questions about many different breeds, different colored eggs, predators like raccoons and how to get along with your neighbors (hint: give them eggs). If you’ve been thinking about getting chickens, now’s a perfect time to start thinking about how you’re going to build your hutch. 

Pick up map at 733 25th Ave S.

12:00 Noon to 1:00 PM: Community Lunch.
Free sandwiches and tasty cakes made with fruit harvested by the Colman Community Harvest Team at Knox and Victor’s house: 733 25th Ave S.


Class 1: Sauerkraut and Pickles the Old-Fashioned Way
Join health counselor and Judkins-resident Kate Faulkner for a class on how to make your own whole-food probiotics at home beginning with basic sauerkraut. We’ll talk about why live-culture foods are good for you, how to make them inexpensively at home, and safety-tips. This empowering class will be a good intro for those who want to learn how to make many fermented foods that can enhance our senses,  digestion, and total health.

Class 2: Getting Your Hen into the Stockpot
At some point your hens are going to stop laying and it will be time to figure out what happens next—  CD Neighbor Knox Gardner will show you how easy it is to get your backyard chickens ready for the stew pot. It’s not pretty, but if you’re eating meat and like chicken noodle soup, this class will show you how it’s done. Please wear clothes you can get a little dirty if you’re going to help pluck feathers.

3:00-5:00 Classes, Session 2

Class 3: Getting Your Hen into the Stockpot repeats if there is interest…

RSVP for classes: [email protected].
Specify class(es) and time slot. I will email you a confirmation to let you know if you are in. 

We’re still interested in adding additional classes, or scheduling similar small hands-on classes in the near future, so be sure to email me if you have a cool skill that you could teach folks in your own home, like good pie making, jam-making, or awesome knitting, winter gardening, etc. 

Japanese Sweet Shop Opens on Jackson

It’s been a long wait, with the signs in the windows for well over a year, but finally, Umai-Do is open! 

The owner Art Oki is still in “soft” opening and said today he expects the grand opening to happen in a couple weeks. He is still working out the hours, but right now, he’s open from 9-6 most days, and 9-4 on Sunday. 

There are a few small tables to have a cup of tea while you eat mochi and other treats.

Japanese Sweet Shop 

1825 S. Jackson Street
Seattle, WA 98144


Chicken Coop Tour & Harvest Festival in South CD

The short summer is coming to an end and we’re wrapping up the Colman Community Harvest… but before we completely disappear into our warm houses for winter wanted to CELEBRATE! …and start thinking about next spring.

Saturday, OCTOBER 8

We’re organizing a full day of cool urban sustainability classes and events centered around Judkins Park and the Colman Neighborhood and we need your help.

9:30 – 12:00 Chicken Coop Tour:  See different in-city solution to raising chickens and quail, learn about the many breeds of chickens being kept here in the CD and the awesomeness and work involved in keeping chickens.

12:00-1:00 Sandwiches and Cake Lunch hosted in Colman Neighborhood

1:00-5:00  Classes hosted by your neighbors to teach you stuff you might want to know! Most classes will just under 2 hours each, so you have time to walk to a different house and learn about something different! 

Here are two that are confirmed:

Butchering Your Old Hen at Home: Getting Your Chickens into the Soup Pot  (2 sessions, 8 people max, and confidential to the ladies who mentioned they had the old hens at the CD Foraging Tour: we need them! )

Lacto-Fermentation and Making Your Own Saurkraut 

We’re working on getting classes together on xeriscape gardening, beer making, preserves, cloches and greenhouses to extend the winter season…BUT WHAT WE NEED IS YOU TO TEACH THEM! 

We’re looking for folks south of Yessler: 

1. Who have a chicken coop, other “livestock” (goats or rabbits anyone?) or bees that we can include on our tour map. You just need to be home between 9:30 and 12:00 for visitors and to answer questions about whatever it is you have set up for your animals.

2. Who have a skill they can teach that other neighbors could learn and benefit from!

Our idea is that most of these classes are taking place in homes around this end of the CD and are free… We know that to be most effective, some might need to have limited and our idea is that we have two sessions so that folks can try different things and meet new people. But just because that is our idea, doesn’t mean we’re not open to your idea! You have an idea but don’t have a location, maybe we can figure that out.

You want to organize a nature walk of Frink Park? You want to put together an old-timey fiddle jam?You want to get a group of folks together to teach each other some new knitting tricks or paper-making? Let us know: we’re just trying to coordinate many activities on the same day on this end of the CD with the idea that the best way to build a sustainable neighborhood is one where neighbors share their skills and passions with others.

Please contact Knox Gardner if you have a coop, have a something to teach or something you want to learn! 

Foraging in the CD: A Few Pictures!

I’m a big believer in that a little good news in the neighborhood is always welcome, so I wanted to get up a few pictures from the Colman Neighborhood’s free Foraging Tour that happened on August 9, with Jackson Place Wildcrafter, JT.

We had 26 people show up to take a look at about twenty different common wild and weedy plants found within one square block that could be eaten or used to cure what might ail you.

I post a few more pictures at my blog,

Due to the great turn out, we’re already talking about organizing one of these in the spring (maybe we can actually cook up some tender nettles, eh?), so keep your eyes on the CD News.

A few upcoming events:

Community Harvest
We’ll be finally trying to gather up some plums with the Colman Neighborhood Community Harvest volunteers in the next couple weeks. There’s not much this year due to the craptastic Spring, but we’ll be trying to get a bit to the food banks.

Butchering Your Old Hens at Home
We’re planning on doing a class on how to butcher your backyard chickens in October. This class will be free, but we will be limiting it to eight, so drop me a note if that’s something you want to get on the list for.

Fruit for the Food Bank: Colman Community Harvest

Now in our third year of harvesting unwanted fruit for the food banks and to distribute around the neighborhood, we’re about to kick off a very late fruit season.

The Colman Neighborhood Community Harvest gathers plums, apples, pears, grapes and any other unwanted fruit in the south end of the Central District to take to St. Mary’s Food bank. We’ve gathered over 2500 pounds of free fruit to get to people who can use it and hope to add another half ton this year to that total!

We pick fruit south of Jackson, north of I-90 and between 23rd and MLK. We are once again looking for volunteers to help pick fruit! We do expect another light year of plums, so we will likely have several short days of picking. Kids welcome.

While we don’t harvest north of Jackson, we are interested in helping other harvesting groups get started in the Central District and learning more about the trees north of us! So if you’ve got a tree that needs harvesting, let us know! We are also interested in getting a group together to start planning for winter pruning and fruit tree care: so let us know if you’re an budding orchardist!

Contact Knox at [email protected] to volunteer!

Foraging the CD: Walking Tour

If you’ve ever walked down the sidewalk and thought to yourself, “I wonder if I can eat that!” this walking tour of Judkins Park is for you!


Join urban forager JT and the Colman Neighborhood Community Harvest as we find wild and edible food in the south end of the Central District.

This is your chance to move beyond picking a few blackberries and to learn about the many other tasty plants you probably pass by every day.


We meet up at 6:30 for light snacks (and some wild food!) at 733 25th Ave S (the cross street is Dearborn). The walking tour will start promptly at 7:00.

Rain or Shine! Contact Knox at [email protected] for more information.

3rd CD Soup Swap

We will once again be hosting a Central District Soup Swap at our home in Colman/Judkins Park on Thursday, March 17th. 

It’s the third one and turning into something of a tradition. It is a great opportunity to meet neighbors here in the CD. To attend, we’re going to ask only this: you have to live in the Central District. We’re going to broadly define the CD so that if you live north of Atlantic, south of Madison, east of 14th and west of 30th, you are invited!

Soup Swaps are a very easy way to add some variety to your meals. You bring six one-quart containers of frozen soup, and you leave with six-one quart containers of frozen soup, but now they’ll be in a wonderful mix instead of just eating from that same big pot of soup for days and days. 

We won’t be specifying it vegan, vegetarian or meat qualities: just bring what you like to cook. It’s only important to make sure that you’ve got quart size containers and that you have six. You can read about Soup Swap (it’s a craze that started right here in Seattle) at  You can read about the other CD soup swaps here on the site or here.

We’ll open our house at 6:00 pm for mingling and having some snacks, with the Soup Swap to being promptly at 7:00. If you’re in a hurry, there shouldn’t be a reason you can’t be out the door by 8:00 pm or even 7:30, but of course, we’re looking forward to having a chance to meet folks from other sections of the CD.

If you want to swap soup, but can’t make that evening, please contact Knox and we can figure out a way for you to drop it off and pick up a mixed bag later.

Finally, we’d ask that everyone bring a few cans of food or some pasta for the St. Mary’s food bank in Jackson Place.

Please email Knox at [email protected] to get the address and to RSVP.

Soup Swap on NPR

Soup Swap was featured this morning on NPR as a great way to eat healthy and build some neighborly connections.

Swaps Get More Mileage from Humble Bowl of Soup

We’ve really enjoyed hosting a Soup Swap for residents here in the Central District the last two years. We’ve met some great folks, doing pretty cool stuff we’d never have met otherwise!

As a founder of this national craze, I was a bit bummed that they cut the bit where I was telling them about how awesome it can be for getting to know the neighbors and about the swaps here in the Central District. Maybe that will make the next interview! I know there’s a nice piece about to hit the newstands in Edible Seattle.

Vic and I are definitely planning on hosting what’s becoming an annual tradition: the THIRD Central District Soup Swap, probably in late February. But if you look outside, you can see it’s a perfect day for soup, so don’t wait for us if it sounds like a great idea: grab your neighbors and pals and do one on your own! 

Here’s the SoupSwap site with some helpful guidelines (and posts about the Central District Soup Swaps), and we’re recently on twitter and facebook as well.

Colman Community Fruit Harvest Kick-Off

Colman Neighborhood’s Community Harvest kickoff is tomorrow night and we’re inviting anyone in the CD who is interested in in fruit harvesting/gleaning or using local food as a way to build community to stop by.  Tomorrow will be less a meeting and more casual conversations with some wine and snacks.

Tuesday, June 22, 7 pm.

733 25th Ave S (cross is Dearborn).

Last year we harvested over 2000 pounds of fruit, mainly plums, that would have otherwise gone to waste and got them distributed to our neighbors, local churches, and St. Mary’s Food Bank.

I’ve got some brochures from Solid Ground on tips for how to put together your own neighborhood harvest, and we’ve certainly got some opinions (some differing!) on what might work and doesn’t seem to for small neighborhood efforts that we could share. 

And certainly, we could always use more volunteers for harvesting esp. in August!

You can contact me with questions or to get more information at [email protected].

2nd CD Soup Swap

While the weather has lately been turning towards thought of summer grilling, the last couple days ought to be a reminder, we’ve got lots of gloomy days ahead where a bowl of soup is a perfect dinner.

We’ll be hosting the 2nd Central District Soup Swap in our Colman/Judkins Park home on Wednesday, March 24th.

Last year’s event was a great way to meet neighbors through out the CD and go home with a nice mix of soup for your freezer and we can’t think of why this year’s won’t be just as lovely.

We’re going to broadly define the CD so that if you live North of Atlantic, South of Madison, East of 14th and West of 30th, we’re inviting you!

You can read about Soup Swap (it’s a craze that started right here in Seattle) at For this swap, you’ll want to bring 6 one quart containers for frozen soup. We won’t be specifying its vegan or meat qualities: make what you like. It’s just important to make sure it’s in quart containers and you’ve got six!

We’ll open our house at 6:00 pm for mingling and drinking some wine, with the Telling of the Soup and swapping to commence promptly at 7:00. We’ll have snacks and mingling can go on and on, but if you’re in dash, we should be finished by 7:30.

Of course, if you want to swap soup but can’t make the time, you’re welcome to drop the soup off or send it with someone else, but proxies pick last.

Finally, we’ll ask that everyone bring some caned foods or pasta for the St. Mary’s food bank in Jackson Place.

Email Knox to RSVP and get the address.

[email protected]