Friday, August 19, 2011

Tips for APSA in Seattle

Dear APSA goer's,
Apparently my guide to the ISA in Montreal has inspired the next generation of political scientists to provide a helpful guide to Seattle.  Brad Epperly of U of Washington (Box 353530, Seattle, WA 98195 provides the following:

First, a link to a google map with heaps of stuff highlighted.
Second, a hunk of text below to instruct conference goes about the stuff highlighted in the map, so here is Brad talking about his town (one that I have never been to before, so this is all his expertise plus some highlighting by me):

This map is a more geographically focused version of a map I made for a friend visiting Seattle when I was abroad last summer. It's focused mostly on places to drink, eat, and see some music. It's not so heavy on the touristy spots, because if you're interested in that, it's easy to find via google. Seattle's a good town for beer, food, and music, and that's what this is going for. It was also modified from a guide written by a grad student for another grad student, so there's no fine dining establishments included.
The hills and water cut off a lot of Seattle neighborhoods from easy access to one another, which has created some interesting and distinct areas. I'd highly recommend getting out of the center and seeing some of them (especially Ballard, Fremont, and Georgetown). But since that might be hard during the conference, this map is focused on places that are a short walk from APSA. That means it's pretty much restricted to the downtown/Belltown/Capitol Hill area (with a few notable exceptions for those who like beer or Mexican food). Most anything in downtown, Belltown, or Capitol Hill is an easy walk from the hotels and convention center.

So a guide to these areas for APSA-goers:
-Downtown is a typical American downtown, with the requisite offices and chain stores and restaurants. There are some hidden gems, despite the small wheat/chaff ratio. The Pike/Pine corridor cuts through the part with the convention center, running from the Pike Place Market at the bottom (near the water) up to Capitol Hill. The Market is very touristy, but also a good spot to grab something to eat.
-Belltown is directly north of downtown, beginning about five blocks north of the Pike/Pine corridor. It's got a lot of condos, a robust drug trade in parts, and a lot of places to eat and drink. There are some great spots, but also a lot of surbanites trying to get into clubs. Think popped collars on the guys and stilettos and mini-skirts on the ladies. Very odd for Seattle.
-Capitol Hill is the recently (last decade) gentrified neighborhood that is directly northeast of downtown. It's historically the bohemian and gay neighborhood, and still retains some of that despite the proliferation of condo developments. The I-5 (which is sunk as it passes through Seattle) cuts it off from downtown, and gives it a very different feel, even if it's only a few blocks from the convention center. It's two main areas are Broadway, which runs north/south, and the Pike/Pine corridor (these streets are also downtown arteries). It vies for Ballard as being the most vibrant of the neighborhoods in Seattle. It has the added advantage of being in the middle of the city, not on the periphery. 

It is worth noting that Bumbershoot (Seattle's biggest music festival) is happening over the long weekend, which is held at the Seattle Center (north edge of Belltown, where the Space Needle is). For APSA-goers, this means this part of town is going to be a madhouse. For music lovers, this means other venues are going to have limited offerings.

Back to the Spew-ful one: The Mariners are in town, and the stadium is apparently a beautiful place to see some baseball.  Since the team, well, sucks, tickets should be easy to get.  The Seahawks have a pre-season game on Friday, so tickets for that might be available as well.  Both are pretty close to the convention.  And, for any town with heaps of water, my guess is that the best way to really see the area is to take a ferry someplace.  Just an educated guess.
Anybody else have any Seattle tips?

1 comment:

Matthew Shugart said...

The Angels are in town!

Let's just say, the way things have been going, that the teams should be pretty evenly matched.