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U District’s First-Ever Cherry Blossom Festival Kicks Off This Friday

Plus, a Skagit Valley beer celebration benefits Viva Farms, and more intel

A sun-lit walkway with cherry trees in bloom on either side. A group of people mingle under the cherry trees.
The University District’s first Cherry Blossom Festival starts March 25.
Courtesy of The U District Partnership

Every spring the University of Washington’s blossoming cherry trees draws thousands of visitors, and this year the 90 year-old Yoshino variety trees are getting their very own festival. Organized by The U District Partnership, the Cherry Blossom Festival takes place from March 25 to April 10, featuring food, drink, and retail specials, a Cherry Blossom Run, and waterfront Cantina Bloom Garden.

Festival-inspired dishes include Kai’s Thai Street Food & Bar’s pink cherry blossom noodle soup, cherry chevre cake from Oasis Tea Zone, and BB.Q Chicken’s cherry bucket combo with Korean-fried chicken and cherry soda. Drink specials include Cafe Allegro’s cherry blossom mocha, Cedars Restaurant’s cherry mango lassi, and plenty of cherry-imbued drinks at U District bars and restaurants like the vodka-up cherry blossom cocktail at Agua Verde Cafe.

Skagit Valley Roadshow raises money for local farm incubator Viva Farms

Non-profit Viva Farms, a bilingual (Spanish and English) farm business incubator, is hosting the fourth annual Skagit Farm to Pint Roadshow, a beer and bounty celebration of local farmers throughout the month of April. Breweries around Skagit Valley will feature local cider and beer made with Skagit Valley malt. There is also a cornhole tournament, trivia events, and more. All proceeds from the event benefit Viva Farms and its work to provide training, education, and access for beginning farmers.

Capitol Hill’s latest closures include Dacha Diner and The Canterbury

Last week Capitol Hill Seattle Blog reported on the upcoming closures of Dacha Diner and longstanding bar The Canterbury Ale House. Since 2018, Dacha served up hearty Eastern European and Jewish cuisine like borscht, matzo ball soup, and sandwiches. Citing health reasons and one co-owner’s switch to a tech career, Dacha made the call to close, with March 27 as its last day. Most Dacha staff will carry over to sister restaurant The Independent Pizzeria in Madison Valley.

Medieval-themed Canterbury is closing after 46 years on 15th Avenue. A neighborhood favorite, The Canterbury is slated to be converted into a new restaurant with new ownership at a date to be determined. The ale house’s last day is March 27.

Family-owned Grumpy D’s Coffee House closes next week

Located in the Ballard/Crown Hill area, cafe Grumpy D’s will close for good March 27. Opening in 2011, the low-key, welcoming cafe hosted regular live music and open mic nights. Husband and wife owners Dan (“Grumpy D”) and Marta Kurtz were told in 2018 the property would be developed into an apartment complex, but when planning stalled, they stayed in operation. Dan passed away in July 2020, and while Marta considered finding a new location, she told My Ballard, “They are all too expensive or too far away and [we] would need to start all over again.”

Vanishing Seattle reported that Grumpy D’s last day will feature live music from the Silver Tongue Devils.

Dacha Diner

1416 East Olive Way, , WA 98122 (206) 708-6855 Visit Website

Cafe Allegro

4214 University Way Northeast, , WA 98105 (206) 633-3030 Visit Website

The Independent Pizzeria

4235 East Madison Street, , WA 98112 (206) 860-6110 Visit Website