Seattle By Land & By Air

Early on in this trip, Edie’s college friend Scott contacted us and said “Hey, if you’re in Seattle, come stay with us.” Hanging out with locals in a new city, especially if we know them from a former life, is something that we jump at the opportunity for.

If not for Scott and his wife, Mary Kate, our Seattle experience would’ve been nothing like what we had. Three of the four things we have to talk about were a direct result of knowing locals. As we’ve said many times, you’re probably going to have a more authentic experience CouchSurfing than staying in a hotel.

While we spent our first two (of five) nights in Seattle with an awesome CouchSurfing host, we headed to the suburb of Woodinville to hang with Scott and Mary Kate Thursday for a long weekend of fun and games, starting with…

You Never Close Your Eyes Anymore…

For 8 weeks during the summer, Redhook Brewery in Woodinville hosts a Moonlight Cinema on Thursday nights. This entails hundreds of people (maybe 600ish?), a gigantic blow-up movie screen, lawn chairs, BBQ or your personal picnic, and, of course, Red Hook beer.

The Thursday night that we were in town, the movie of the week was a classic for all children of the 80s, Top Gun. This wasn’t your run-of-the-mill outdoor movie viewing experience, though. With a classic like Top Gun, this was a sellout crowd, some dressed in flight suits or other festive attire, playing sing-along with the songs we all know by heart.

Admission was $5 each, plus a few bucks spent on a few drinks, and the delicious picnic dinner we brought in with salumis, cheeses, chocolate, cookies, and bread from a store just outside of Pike Place Market. We were treated to a perfectly clear night under a full moon, making for a fantastic viewing experience.

If we lived in the area, we’d certainly be checking this out more during the summer to see other flicks like Animal House, Talladega Nights, and Dazed and Confused.

Pike Place Market

No visit to Seattle is complete without checking out Pike Place Market. Touristy? Yes. Overpriced? Sometimes, but not always. Worth a visit? Certainly! Since we needed to pick up some items for the Friday night cookout at the house, we figured we could find at least some of it at the Market, while fulfilling our desire to see this touristy essential.

To take care of the produce, we happened across a produce stand handing out samples of their peaches. Like a good crack dealer, the first hit was free, because they knew that after tasting some of the juiciest, sweetest, most perfect peaches we’ve ever had, we were coming in for more. Unfortunately, we don’t know which stand it was to give them a proper shout-out, but you’ll probably find them by their incredible fruit.

While we didn’t buy much else at the Market, we were treated to the theater of fish throwing at Pike Place Fish, tried a little gelato because it was there, and found Paris Grocery to create our picnic for the Top Gun viewing mentioned above.

Seattle From Above

Edie has friends in fly places, so the real excitement started Friday morning when Scott treated us to an aerial tour of Seattle in his 4-seat Cessna. After taking off near Woodinville, we headed to Seattle for flyovers of the city. We got excellent views of the Space Needle from above, saw where the likes of Bill Gates and Paul Allen live on Lake Washington, and generally saw the city landmarks, from the currently being renovated University of Washington Huskies football stadium to the professional sports stadiums. Towering over everything in the distance were Mt. Baker and Mt. Rainier.

This was the smallest plane either of us have ever been on and we really enjoyed the experience.

Ze Plane! Ze Plane!

As if our own flying experience weren’t enough, we all spent Saturday at Seafair, a summer event that culminates in Seafair Weekend with two days of air shows and hydroplane racing.

While we weren’t lucky enough to have a boat tied to the booms out in the lake where we could witness the hydroplane racing, we did have an excellent spot to watch the air show. There were acrobatics planes buzzing the water and modern day fighter planes doing high-speed flyovers. Then, the pinnacle of the show was the Blue Angels spending 45 minutes or so doing various maneuvers for the viewers.

From The Ground & From The Air

As you’d expect, there are a lot of aerial shots of Seattle in here, but there are also pictures of other people flying around while our feet were firmly planted on terra firma.