Yes, we Kirkland residents sometimes travel to shop at Redmond Town Center and Bellevue Square, and we do enjoy our big box stores Costco and Fred Meyer. But what really spins the retail world of Kirkland is our wonderful collection of small businesses.
On the eve of Small Business Saturday, our thoughts turn to places like Simplicity Decor and Simplicity ABC -- what would Kirkland be without entrepreneurs with civic hearts of gold such as “A” Liengboonlertchai?
Or Tim’s Seafood at Parkplace Center? Want fresh king salmon in winter? Then you’re going to have to go see Mr. Tim Caluya, and it’ll be the best. Want the latest in chic ladies shoes? Better go check out the million-dollar smile of Rhonda Herbert at Crush Footwear. Or let’s say you’ve got a peculiar running gait -- you need to go get fitted with the right running shoes by Lance Carter at Everyday Athlete ($450 in free prizes on Saturday).
Some of the hardest working independent business people in Kirkland are others in the food and dining industry: Like Jamie Casady at DERU Market, Alicia Miner at Urban Coffee Lounge, Mike and Megan Halter at Lucia, and Shahin Shahidy at Padria Mediterranean Cafe.
I could go on and on. So I will (as you can see above this story is tagged “opinion”). Other favorites include Sequoia Leopold at Flawless Beauty Bars (and spray tans), a former SeaGal! When the silver and turquoise ring I bought a few years ago from a Navajo woman outside Kayenta, Ariz., lost a stone, Vince Isaacson at Lake Street Diamond Company did a nice job replacing it. I can never walk by Bella Tesori on Lake Street without looking in to see if owner Rosalynn Sumners is there -- she looks more amazing now than when she won a silver medal in figure Skating at the 1984 Olympics.
We cannot leave out Parkplace Books, one of the last such on the Eastside and a real Kirkland treasure. Vortex Music is the coolest little shop. Oh yes, our terrific galleries, such as Arlon Rosenoff Fine Art, Parklane (owned by 40 member artists) and Dan and Pat Howard’s Howard/Mandville.
The thing about it is, although most of us shop on-line and at the big boxes as well, you help the local economy vastly more when you shop locally.
So we invite you to tell us which are your favorite Kirkland small businesses and why -- and if you’re a small business owner with a special on Small Business Saturday, let us know! Tell us in the comments box below!