Thursday, August 24, 2006

Seattle's Hidden Urban Waterfall

Seattle's nearby mountains offer many vistas of waterfalls, but locals and visitors don't have to go beyond 2nd Avenue to experience a transcendent waterfall garden hidden in the urban setting of the Pioneer Square area. If you did not know it was there, you would miss it but for the sound of the rushing waters beyond a high wall. Step through a tall gateway at the sidewalk and you are transported to a green and peaceful garden setting of Japanese maples and pots of bright flowers amidst cafe tables and chairs that beckon one to sit and enjoy the quiet, unexpected beauty. The Waterfall Garden Park was designed by Masao Kinoshita and built in 1977 by the Annie E. Casey Foundation to honor the workers of the United Parcel Service, UPS. Jim Casey of Seattle was one of the founders of UPS, originally formed as American Messenger Service in a saloon at this site on 2nd Ave. I'm told that those first foot messengers back in the day were sometimes couriers of laudanum (an opiate) to the many saloons and brothels in the area. They've come a long, long way from those days (read the interesting story by clicking the link). UPS drivers' worst infractions these days are double parking big brown delivery trucks and wearing brown shorts in all seasons while they deliver Amazon.com packages and the like. The lovely white noise of the cascading urban waterfall might lull one into a peaceful state of mind, and it won't cost a thing. The Waterfall Garden is free to the public. Posted by Picasa

12 comments:

edwin s said...

hi there Kim!

what a lovely place to sit and have a cuppa and enjoy the sounds of the water.

sari said...

Wow! Nice place to have a cup of tea.

Marie McC said...

Beautiful garden, well captured and interesting post, Kim!

kostas said...

I would like to take my morning coffee near the waters!Very nice place!

~tanty~ said...

What a beautiful little waterfall. I would love to have a cup of coffee and relaxing there with my dear one :)
Oh Kim, I've changed my address. Please update your link :)
http://stavangerphotobytanty.blogspot.com

~mona~ said...

I love the feeling your Daily Photo site gives me. I just imagine your walks each day ~ your eyes and soul so incredibly open. Thank you so much for sharing your beautiful city with us all.

Alexander said...

It looks really beautiful and peaceful.

Kim said...

Thanks so much for your kind comments, everyone. And if you come to visit Seattle, perhaps we can meet for a morning cuppa joe here talk about our city daily photo blogs! I enjoy visiting each of your sites often (check out Mona's special "In My Backyard" blog in the "Links" section--she and I have been part of the same listserve community for many years, and are even in the same line of work, but have yet to meet face to face--one of these days. . .). And Tanty, thanks for the updated link. I've made the change.
-Kim

susan said...

Very nice...it seems I'm always learning something new from you. :)

Jazzy said...

I can imagine having a drink here could be a very refreshing affair, love the waterfall =)

Cristina said...

Thanks for sharing this treasure. And your description makes the place all the more alluring.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the wonderful pic and your description of the Waterfall Park. I lived in Seattle for three years, and I have to say, it's my favourite city in the World... and I've lived in nine cities the last 10 years, so that's saying something!

I knew the tour-guide in my initial city-tour had mentioned the colorful anecdote regarding UPS roots, but I couldn't find a site to confirm it. I was beginning to think it was my imagination when I finally found your site :) It was good to know someone else had heard the anecdote too.

Cheers,

Dia