Posts tagged Washington State
Washington State Summer Bucket List :: 17 Things to do this Summer Around the State
Anna Osgoodby Life + Biz :: Washington State Summer Bucket List :: 17 Things to do this Summer Around the State

I can’t even believe it but the first day of summer is officially here! I’m probably a little biased, but I think we have life pretty dang good in the PNW this season. I used to reallyyy dread summer when I lived on the east coast because the weather killed me, but now that I’m back on the west coast it’s quickly become one of my favorites! It gets hot, but not too hot and we rarely have to deal with that humidity nonsense — thank God! Even more important than the weather though, Washington just has so many options for different things you can do both in the cities and outdoors. The best of both worlds! So today I’m sharing some of the things that are on calendar (which is somehow already filled up 😳) in case you need some adventure ideas!

Taste of Tacoma

The Taste of Tacoma is really kicking off summer this year because it’s THIS weekend at Point Defiance Park Friday-Sunday in Tacoma. It will be going on 11am-9pm on Friday and Saturday and then 11am-8pm on Sunday. It’s been going on for the last 33 years and it highlights everything from local restaurants and breweries in the state, family fun and there’s also live music. It’s also free! Parking can get a little crazy near the park but they have a free park and ride shuttle service from Tacoma Community College which I’d recommend.

Anna Osgoodby Life + Biz :: Washington State Summer Bucket List :: 17 Things to do this Summer Around the State

Fab Fridays Emerald Downs

If you’re looking for something to do on Friday nights I recommend checking out Emerald Downs for their Fab Fridays. The first race is at 6:30pm and they also have beer specials and live music. Plus, it’s wayyy chiller on Friday nights than on Saturday or Sundays. They have different specials and things going on each Friday but it’s become one of my favorite times to actually go to the races. Another cool thing is the first Fab Friday of the season (it’s usually the Friday before Mother’s Day) they give away free t-shirts and if you get one you have free admission for the rest of Fridays in the season. Score right?! My mom and I have gotten them the last two years so it makes it a cheap Friday night out — especially because I don’t bet lol. If you don’t have a t-shirt though they also have a Groupon which is a great deal. It’s $10 and it gets you in, a free program and a $10 food voucher. Plus they have a tent set up right outside the gate so it’s super easy to use.

Fremont Fair for Solstice Weekend

Summer solstice weekend in Seattle goes hand-in-hand with the Fremont Fair, which let’s be honest, is probably most notorious for the naked bike riders in the parade. The fair is a lot more than that though with lots of food and drinks, art, street performers, crafts and other fun. Plus Fremont is just a cute neighborhood in Seattle too so it’s the perfect way to kick off the summer!

Stars and Stripes Parade in Enumclaw

I have to give it up to my little small town. They’ve definitely stepped it up a lot since growing up here with their events. If you’re looking for an all-American small town 4th of July parade then this is the one to go to! It starts at noon on Cole Street and it’s a fun parade to go to. Bonus, stop by our restaurants, shops, and breweries after (yes Enumclaw even has breweries now — say whattt?!)

Concert at the Gorge

Summer concerts are just the best and ones at the gorge are definitely a summer bucket list item here in Washington. The views at the gorge are so pretty and I always love a change of scenery driving to central Washington. Plus lawn seating tickets are usually pretty affordable. I’ll be hitting up Eric Church in a few weeks but they have an awesome line-up this summer so you should definitely check it out!

Back to the Old West in Winthrop

We have a trip booked to Winthrop that I’m really looking forward to! It’s located about 3.5 hours northeast from Seattle and makes a great weekend getaway. If you haven’t been, the main street looks like you took a trip back to the old west! One of the most well-known destinations there is Sun Mountain Lodge which is a really cool resort too. We stayed there as kids (the last time I was there) and it’s still one of my favorite vacations. Even if you don’t stay at the resort they have restaurants and activities you can check out too.

Get Outdoors and Go Hiking

It’s not a summer in the PNW without some hiking, right?! I have a pretty big bucket list for hikes this summer (and I’ll be writing a separate blog on those recs soon) but there’s no better way to enjoy the beautiful scenery our state has to offer than hiking. Some of the ones on my summer bucket list this year are Diablo Lake, Lake Serene and Bridal Veil Falls, and Kendall Katwalk. I also want to get a few hikes in on the Olympic Peninsula. So many places to explore! If you’re looking for more suggestions I’d recommend checking out the Washington Trails Association website and All Trails.

Anna Osgoodby Life + Biz :: Washington State Summer Bucket List :: 17 Things to do this Summer Around the State

Strawberry Festival on Vashon Island

Vashon Island’s Strawberry Festival is happening July 19-21 and this is the 110th year! The festival includes a parade, car show, live music, street booths, food, beer gardens and a street dance. Plus it’s just a quick ferry ride away from both Tacoma and Seattle so if you’ve been looking for an excuse to get out and explore this is the perfect time to do it!

King County Fair

Also going down the 3rd weekend of July, the King County Fair will be happening July 18-21st. I used to look forward to this fair every summer as a kid! It’s definitely a bit smaller than it was back then, but it still has all of my personal fair favs — animals (lots of them!), elephant ears, scones, and pig races!

Kayaking at Local Beaches or Lakes

I bought kayaks last year and it’s quickly become one of my favorite things to do in the summer. In fact, Scooter is even a fan! He took his first trip out and actually liked it so he’ll be coming along on some adventures this summer. I recommend kayaking at Titlow Beach if you have your own kayaks and Owen Beach in Tacoma if you need to rent some. Personally I think Titlow is a little less crowded but both are great options! Or if lakes are more your thing (no current!) there’s a ton of options locally too. I’m back and forth between Tacoma and Enumclaw almost weekly so I like to go to Deep Lake but check out what is near you!

Anna Osgoodby Life + Biz :: Washington State Summer Bucket List :: 17 Things to do this Summer Around the State

Homespun Happy Hour Fort Nisqually

Fort Nisqually is a living history museum located in Point Defiance park and last year they kicked off an event series called Homespun Happy Hour. The museum is popular for kids but this event is actually only for adults 21+. The event offers a cash bar and different 19th century crafts like candle making, tinsmithing, felting, and more! We went to one of the events last year and it was such a blast! Not only was it something different but we also learned a lot about history while we were doing everything! Definitely recommend it and you can get tickets to this year’s events here.

Mariners Game

Another summer classic… baseball games! I’ve been to more baseball games than I can count for someone who doesn’t even really love baseball but the games are always a blast! I love Safeco too.. ok.. ok.. T-Mobile Park (that’s going to take some getting used to) because you can just hang out in the beer gardens. We usually just buy cheap tickets and then do that! Plus let’s be honest, you know I’m just there for the grub! Some of my personal favs are the donuts from On Deck Donuts, the crab fries from Way Back Crab Shack and dumplings from Din Tai Fung. All of which are featured in this article from Eater!

Art Festival Proctor

One of my favorite neighborhoods in Tacoma is Proctor, it’s such an adorable area plus they have a nice farmer’s market every Saturday (I’m obsessed with the scones from Upper Crust Bakery). Well, once a year they do a HUGE art street fair called Proctor Arts Fest. This year it’s taking place on Saturday, August 3rd from 10am-4pm and it will feature art, food, live performances — all of the goods. Tacoma is so supportive of local businesses and artists which I love so this is a good one!

Anna Osgoodby Life + Biz :: Washington State Summer Bucket List :: 17 Things to do this Summer Around the State

Cabin Living at Loon Lake

I’ve always been a sucker for lake living in the summer in Washington. I have so many great memories growing up going to Lake Chelan, Lake Tapps, Green Lake, and more! So many lakes! The latest to join the list of favs is Loon Lake outside of Spokane. Evan’s family has a cabin on the lake and each summer they have a family weekend so I’m looking forward to that! With so many options in the state you can find some great Airbnbs to rent out to get some lake time in or a campground if you’re into that! The one aspect of outdoor living I haven’t really embraced yet haha.

Explore the Olympic Peninsula

One part of the state I am SO looking forward to exploring more is the Olympic Peninsula. Every time I’m out there I just love it and I have a few more places I definitely want to check out this summer including Lake Crescent and La Push. As well as a long list of hikes! Definitely worth researching a little and finding the perfect day trip or weekend adventure for you or your family over there!

Washington State Fair AKA the Puyallup Fair

If you’re looking for some big fair action then the Washington State Fair is what you’re looking for! It is the state fair after all! I’m a sucker for a good fair so you can bet I’ll be there getting my corndog action on, again with the scones, and probably a big ol’ slushie because that’s how I do. This year the fair will run from August 30- September 22nd.

Anna Osgoodby Life + Biz :: Washington State Summer Bucket List :: 17 Things to do this Summer Around the State

Dinner at the Summit at Crystal

Then last but not least, if you’re looking for an adventure with a view out of this world then you need to get up to Crystal Mountain this summer. The ski resort offers gondola rides up to their Summit House Restaurant and it literally feels like you’re on top of the world. Photos don’t do it justice at all either, it’s just gorgeousss! On a clear day you can see Mt. Rainier, Mt. Adams, Mt. St. Helens, and Mt. Baker… Insane! It’s not a cheap adventure… but it’s totally worth it. You don’t have to eat up there if you don’t want to either but it’s a nice option.

Hope you enjoyed some of these suggestions! Hopefully they get you started on all of the potential we have in the state. If you’d like to keep up with my adventures throughout the summer too be sure to follow me on Instagram! Because you know I’ll be sharing 😉

A Tacoma Annual Tradition Hunting for Monkeyshines: A Look at the Citywide Guerrilla Art Hunt
Anna Osgoodby Life + Biz: A Tacoma Annual Tradition Hunting for Monkeyshines: A Look at the Citywide Guerrilla Art Hunt

It’s Chinese New Year which means... Monkeyshine season is upon us in Tacoma! If you haven’t heard about it before, it’s an annual guerrilla art hunt where local artists hide a couple thousand glass orbs and medallions stamped with the Chinese Zodiac around the city.

Originally, it was started by someone known as “Ms. Monkey” and a friend who wanted to create joy and excitement for residents during our long grey winters. While deciding what they were going to create and hide, they were inspired by Ms. Monkey’s friend’s brass stamp he had created with a monkey on it. With access to a hot shop and donated glass, they decided stamping glass balls was the perfect creation. Plus, it would also pay homage to the city’s glass roots. From there, they created 200 creations and with a cohort of volunteers they hid them around the city. Here’s a peek at what some of them look like!

Their idea was a hit right from the bat, even with some initial confusion. Apparently the finds were being confiscated at first because they thought they had been stolen from the glass museum! After a very buzzworthy first year, Ms. Monkey’s crew decided to commit to hiding what would be known as “monkeyshines” each year for 12 years to complete a cycle (and later another cycle). How fun right?! You can learn even more about the back story of the tradition in this great article from Joanna Kresge of South Sound Magazine including an interview with Ms. Monkey herself.

Since then, the event has continued to evolve and others have decided to join in the fun including, now infamous, Marble Man who leaves marbles and others who leave their own gifts of charms, bracelets, and painted rocks to name a few. Adding even more treasures to be found! There aren’t any formal rules, but you can find monkeyshines in public places around the city and be sure to keep the honor system of 1 per person (that is if you’re lucky enough to even find one!)

Last year was my first year of hunting for monkeyshines and while we didn’t find anything, it was a really fun day of exploring the city — especially because we’d just moved. You could say we fully embraced the original mission of the event! That was also the day we ended up discovering my favorite brewery, 7 Seas Brewing (where I just celebrated my 30th Birthday party at)!

Anna Osgoodby Life + Biz: A Tacoma Annual Tradition Hunting for Monkeyshines: A Look at the Citywide Guerrilla Art Hunt

This year, I was lucky enough to (unsuspectingly) come across a red envelope with a pig charm inside too! I also walked by a guy who found a really gorgeous glass ball in Wright Park! So there are definitely treasures to be found out there! I’ve been keeping up with the hashtag on Instagram of finds too! No matter if you find something or not though, remember to enjoy the hunt and this great city because that’s where the real fun is!

Life Lately :: Settling into Life in Washington
Anna Osgoodby Life + Design :: Life Lately :: Settling into Life in Washington

Normally this time of the year I'm working on my NYC anniversary post, but this year is a little bit different. Life sure has a funny way of throwing you curveballs doesn't it?! They joke you're not a real New Yorker until you've lived in the city for 7 years so I guess I justtt missed that cut-off. So instead of hitting that milestone this week, I'm celebrating a different anniversary.. my first full month of being a Washington resident again! 👈🏻 Woh, that still feels weird to say! 

Anna Osgoodby Life + Design :: Life Lately :: Settling into Life in Washington

So how's it going?! Now that I've gotten through some of the logistics of the move -- like sorting out health insurance, figuring out how to buy a car, and actually getting all of my stuff to the west coast.. all of that fun stuff -- I'm starting to adjust to my new normal. You can't get much further apart on the spectrum moving from New York back to my little hometown so I was a little worried about that, but for the most part, it's felt pretty great to get back to my roots. So what have been some of the biggest adjustments?! A lot! I like to joke that living in the city was like living on another planet and in a lot of ways it's true. There have certainly been a lot of changes on the flip side. Driving, having full sized appliances and a wholeee lot more space, less humidity, whole aisles of ice cream at the grocery store (I'm ok with this change), seeing sunsets, super-friendly people, allll of the outdoors... Some have been easier to adjust to (like the ice cream haha) and others that have been a little tougher like changing my work schedule! I think it's going to take a bit longer to adjust to that 5 a.m. wake-up time. 🙈

Generally, I'm someone who enjoys some downtime, but that is the one thing I haven't had much of this summer since being back. This girl has been busyyyyy. Like, can I have a free weekend to stay in my pjs all weekend soon?! I think staying busy has actually been one of the best things for getting adjusted, but I'm not going to lie it has been kind of exhausting. My life here is pretty different than my life in NYC though so it has kept me moving forward. So what have I been up to? Here are some of the major things!

Reconnecting with Fam & Friends

This has been the single best thing about being home again! Of course, now I'm missing all of my NYC friends, but it has been so great to reconnect with everyone here. I've been lucky to have been able to spend a lot more time home over the last year, but really being home is a totally different experience. When you live cross-country most of the time you see your family it's for an occasion, so it's great to be able to just hang out without any agenda. Being able to meet up with my Dad for an afternoon hike or spend an evening with my Mom has been so nice. It's little things like that, that you totally take for granted when you live near your parents so I've been trying to make up for the last 10 years of living out of state!

Anna Osgoodby Life + Design :: Life Lately :: Settling into Life in Washington
Anna Osgoodby Life + Design :: Life Lately :: Settling into Life in Washington
Anna Osgoodby Life + Design :: Life Lately :: Settling into Life in Washington
Anna Osgoodby Life + Design :: Life Lately :: Settling into Life in Washington

Getting My Outdoors On

This summer has been beau-ti-ful!!! Seattle broke a record from 1951 this year for 52 days without rain and boy have I been enjoying it. I've spent a lot of time this summer taking advantage of all of the outdoors Washington has to offer. In the mountains.. time at the lake.. walking along the beaches.. #Gimmealloftheoutdoors. While I'm staying back in my hometown, I've also taken up a hiking at a local spot during the week. There's something kind of therapeutic about getting your butt kicked climbing a mountain when you're starting over too.

Anna Osgoodby Life + Design :: Life Lately :: Settling into Life in Washington
Anna Osgoodby Life + Design :: Life Lately :: Settling into Life in Washington
Anna Osgoodby Life + Design :: Life Lately :: Settling into Life in Washington
Anna Osgoodby Life + Design :: Life Lately :: Settling into Life in Washington
Anna Osgoodby Life + Design :: Life Lately :: Settling into Life in Washington

Something I have also really come to appreciate about Washington since being back is the diversity of activities the state has. While I grew up here, I left the state when I was 18 so I never really fully appreciated that. You can go hiking one day, to the beach the next, and kayaking the next. I can. not. get. enough! I know there was a million things to do in NYC too, but it's been nice having a different set of options and a lot more that involve getting some fresh air. There's just something about being able to hop in your own car (more on that later) that is so freeing and I've been loving that.

Squeezing in some City Time

Anna Osgoodby Life + Design :: Life Lately :: Settling into Life in Washington

Along with spending a lotttt of times outdoors, I've also been getting my city fix in! I've always had such a love affair with Seattle, even though truthfully I know very little about it, so I have been loving the city adventures I've had so far. I've made it to two Mariners games this summer, enjoyed some time at Alki Beach, and also went to my first Seafair party and watched the Blue Angels!

Anna Osgoodby Life + Design :: Life Lately :: Settling into Life in Washington
Anna Osgoodby Life + Design :: Life Lately :: Settling into Life in Washington

It's interesting being back too because, in NYC, that's really the hub on the city side... Back here though, we also have a lot of smaller cities where there's still a ton of things to check out even if you're not in Seattle. Needless to say I have a lotttt of adventuring left to do. With more cities, my brain has kind of exploded for thinking about where I want to move next too. So many options... That decision can wait for another day though. For now I'm just enjoying checking out different things and fun events going on around the state.

Doing all of the Driving

Driving.. Guys, I bought a car and I'm not going to lie.. I'm kind of obsessed with it. I was lucky enough to have the best car buying partner EVER too! We walked into our first dealership to take a look at some of the options and I ended up driving out a brand new car right out of the showroom and I am in LOVE! Well maybe not with having a car payment, but the car... I LOVE!

Anna Osgoodby Life + Design :: Life Lately :: Settling into Life in Washington
Anna Osgoodby Life + Design :: Life Lately :: Settling into Life in Washington

HOLY MOLY! Let me tell you, cars are definitely a little more high tech than the last time I owned one.. I mean the last time I was driving my car still had a cassette player in it.. 🙈 If I'm being honest, it's going to take a bit for me to really figure it all out haha. 3 backup cams (kind of essential after my incident earlier this summer), lane departure warning, automatic braking.. the car can almost drive itself and those are just the ones I've kind of figured out so far. 

So needless to say it has been quite the month! There are definitely a lot of things about NYC I miss already, but it has been such an awesome start to this new chapter so far and I can't wait to see what comes next!