Local News and Events from Kent, Washington

This edition of Sound Bites is sponsored by AAA Pest Control.

August is just about here, and the weather reflects it. It is supposed to be in the 90s here. Ugh. I love summer, but that’s a bit too toasty for me. It’s great weather for National Night Out though and the fun activities taking place around the city, including free summer concerts, Kent Downtown Partnership’s ice cream social for National Night Out and much more. Have a great week – and don’t forget to vote!

~ Dana Neuts, Publisher


I Voted. Did You?NEW–Tuesday, August 1 is Primary Election Day
ICYMI, the August 1 primary is tomorrow. If you are a registered voter and have mailed or dropped off your ballot yet, Tuesday is the deadline. If you are mailing your ballot, it needs a first-class postage stamp and must be postmarked by Tuesday, at the latest. If you are dropping it off at a designated ballot dropbox, you need to drop it off by 8 PM Tuesday. If you have already submitted your ballot, you can track its status here. For dropoff locations and other voting resources, click here. There are two ballot boxes in Kent: one at the Regional Justice Center and one at Kentridge High School.

NEW–National Night Out is tomorrow!
Tomorrow will already be a busy day, but it will be even busier with National Night Out events planned throughout the city. This is an annual event celebrated across the country to promote crime prevent, and a great way to do that is by getting to know your neighbors. Kent Downtown Partnership is among those celebrating National Night Out. Join them at Town Square Plaza for an ice cream social from 5 to 7 PM, sponsored by Green River College.

NEW–Amazon is hiring; Jobs Day is Wed., Aug. 2
Amazon is on a mission to hire 50,000 more employees in the U.S., including the Kent Fulfillment Center (21005 64th Ave. S., Kent, WA 98032). The company is hosting its first ever Jobs Day on Wed., Aug. 2 from 8 AM to Noon, and it plans to make on-the-spot job offers for part-time, full-time and seasonal positions. In addition, the Kent Amazon Staffing Office invites prospective employees to stop in July 31 and Aug. 3-4 to apply as well. Learn more here.

NEW–Next Puget Sound RFA Fire Chief selected from finalists
Last Wednesday Puget Sound Regional Fire Authority announced that it had selected a new fire chief from among three finalists. Puget Sound RFA has made a conditional offer of employment to Matthew Morris, currently fire chief of the Henderson Fire Department, Henderson, Nevada. If the terms of the agreement are met, the Governance Board will ratify Chief Morris’s selection at the Aug. 16 board meeting.

Kent Event: The next Coffee with the Chief is Wed., Aug. 9 at the Kent Community Foundation.NEW–Next Coffee with the Chief, Aug. 9
Mark your calendars for the next Coffee with the Chief, scheduled for Wed., Aug. 9 at 8 AM. The August host will be the Kent Community Foundation at 220 Railroad Ave. North, at the corner of Smith and Railroad in downtown Kent. Join Kent Police Chief Ken Thomas, his command staff, the neighborhood response team and others to get your Kent crime questions answered. More details here.

NEW–A few hiccups with the Distracted Driving Law
Last Friday, the Washington State Patrol held a media briefing by phone to explain some of the misconceptions about the new Distracted Driving Law. I sat in on the call, and to be honest, I didn’t take away much new information except that the WSP will consider the “totality of the circumstances” when issuing citations for E-DUIs (electronic DUIs). Read more about the law in our original post here, or more about the confusion in The News Tribune’s story on Friday.

Kent News: City of Kent wants community input regarding neighborhood trees.NEW–City wants community input on ‘street trees’ by Aug. 13
The city is asking for community input on street trees in Kent neighborhoods. How do they impact quality of life, air quality, crime and other factors? Learn more about the project, and get a link to the city’s survey, here.


NEW–Experience Historical Kent – Aug. 2017
The Greater Kent Historical Society has planned a series of events to connect Kent residents and visitors with our city’s fascinating past. This Saturday, August 5, GKHS will host a booth at the Kent Farmer’s Market and city historians will offer a Mill Creek Neighborhood Historic Home Walking Tour. Click here for those events and others taking place later in August.

Kent Cornucopia Days Coloring ContestNEW–Congrats to our Kent Cornucopia Coloring Contest winners
This was our second coloring contest, and we were thrilled to get 48 entries, especially during such a busy time of year. We announced the winners on Third Thursday Art Night, July 20, but you can get the winners’ list here. Also, if you are among the winners and haven’t claimed your prize yet, please contact Susan at Artsy Fartsy Art Lessons to arrange a time to pick up your prize. Thanks to everyone who participated, as well as co-sponsor and artist Susan Bagrationoff at Artsy Fartsy Art Lessons, Moore Than Rocks, Rusty Raven Studio, prize sponsor Kent Station and graphic designer Kathryn Schmidt of Schmeedes Creative  for helping out. Our next coloring contest will be for Halloween. Stay tuned for details!

REMINDER–Dog Daze & Feline Fantasies Pet Adoption Event, Aug. 5
Come on down to Kent Station on Saturday, August 5 (11 AM to 3 PM) to meet hundreds of adoptable dogs and cats. Also, pets and their owners will enjoy raffles and free samples, Kent Police K9 demonstration (noon), pet product vendors, and pet-friendly, happy hour patios. Read more here. Note: This is separate from the second annual Dog Days of Summer event taking place at the Kent Senior Center which runs from 10 AM to 2 PM.

Kent News: iLoveKent is hosting debates on Sept 21 and 28 for the general election races.REMINDER–iLoveKent to host political debates Sept. 21 and 28
iLoveKent is hosting debates in September for the candidates who make it through the Aug. 1 primary election. From the primary, the top two vote-getters will advance to the November general election. We’ll host a Kent mayoral candidate debate on Thurs., Sept. 21 and a Kent City Council candidate debate on Thurs., Sept. 28. Both will be held at the Kent Senior Center (600 E. Smith). Our presenting sponsor is Marti Reeder of John L. Scott. A big thank you to Marti for supporting us! Read more about the debates here. If you would like to be a sponsor or want to volunteer to help set up or do voter registration, please contact me at info@ilovekent.net.

REMINDER–Free summer concerts in Kent on Tues., Wed. and Thurs.
Thanks to Kent Station, the City of Kent and the Kent Arts Commission, there are four free concerts each week in Kent through August 17: Take Out Tuesdays (noon to 1 PM) at Kent Station, Wednesday Picnic Performances, especially for kids (noon to 1 PM) at Town Square Plaza, Wednesday Family Date Night (6 PM – 8 PM) at Kent Station, and Thursdays at the Lake (7 – 8:30 PM) at Lake Meridian Park. Click here for a list of concerts, days and times.

NEW–KDP plans Wine Walk for Fri., Aug. 18
Kent Event: KDP Hosts Spring Wine Walk on August 18, 2017Join Kent Downtown Partnership for its last Wine Walk of the season on Friday, August 18. Tickets are $25 in advance or $30 at the door. Participants must be 21 or older and have a valid ID. No exceptions. Each ticket entitles the guest to a wine glass and 12 tasting tickets. Participating wineries include Barrage Cellars, Cloudlift Cellars, Davenport Cellars, Marcus Sophia Winery, Masquerade Winery, Michael Florentino Cellars, Moose Canyon Winery, Naches Heights Vineyard, Soos Creek Wine Cellars and Vino Aquino. Tickets are available online now.

This Week in Kent

(Get additional event details on our Google calendar):

Aug. 1                National Night Out
Aug. 1                Primary Election Day
Aug. 1                Free Take Out Tuesday Concert
Aug. 2                Free Wednesday Picnic Performance Concert
Aug. 2                Free Date Night Wednesday Concert
Aug. 3                Free Thursdays at the Lake Concert
Aug. 5                Free Children’s Art Project at Rusty Raven Studio
Aug. 5                Dog Days of Summer at Kent Senior Center
Aug. 5                Kent Farmer’s Market with Experience Historical Kent
Aug. 5                Mill Creek Historic District Walking Tour
Aug. 5                Kent Museum: Smith Bros. Farm Legacy Exhibit Opening
Aug. 5                Dog Daze and Feline Fantasies at Kent Station

Dana Neuts

I am a full-time freelance writer, editor, marketing pro and the publisher of iLoveKent.net.