Neighborhood Matching Fund supported Bell’s Town Tour, Friday, August 10 at 4:30 p.m.

Jim Miller, President of the Belltown Business Association (BBA) will announce the launch of the new Bell’s Town Tour, a mobile app that takes users on a self-guided tour of the historical architecture of Belltown. The event will happen at Tilikum Place Park, a historically significant site at the intersection of Fifth, Cedar and Denny, which is also the juncture of the original land claims of city founders Denny, Boren, and Bell. 

The app was made possible by a grant given by the Seattle Department of Neighborhoods. According to Jane Savard, the BBA board member who wrote the grant, Tilikum Place Park was chosen for several appropriate reasons: “The Chief of the Suguamish statue at the park was unveiled a hundred years ago on Founders Day by the great-great granddaughter of Chief Seattle. At the time, the city wanted to commemorate the original settlers of the area and acknowledge that Seattle was named after an important leader of those native residents. We continue that tradition. We also timed the launch to coincide with the Seattle Center’s 50th Anniversary celebration as well as the newly revamped Second Friday Belltown Artwalk and the 2012 Seattle Founders Day Festival that starts Saturday.” 

According to Miller, the Bell’s Town Tour app is a “cutting edge cultural tool that preserves the rich history of Belltown. The BBA is committed to preserving and promoting that history. We’re focused on elevating the reasons people come to Belltown and creating more events that showcase the hidden gems we have down here.”

Senator Jeanne Kohl-Welles, who will speak at the launch party on the resurgence of community involvement in Belltown, agrees that Belltown “is more than what happens after midnight on the weekends. For those of us who live or work here, the atmosphere is much more neighborly. The tour app, the artwalk, the festival are all volunteer driven and without the corporate funding that other Seattle neighborhoods enjoy.”

Users can download the 1.0 version of the app at www.belltownba.org/tour and begin scanning QR codes that are placed in windows of 50 locations throughout Belltown. Once a QR code is scanned, users will see a historical description of the site along with historic and contemporary photos. The Chief Seattle statue, the 5 Point Café (the longest running business in Belltown), and Tilikum Place Café are all featured.

 Music will be provided by Belltown musicians and drinks and appetizers can be had at the 5 Point Café and Tilikum Place Café. Speakers will provide information on the Bell’s Town Tour and the Belltown Artwalk. Actors playing William Bell and Doc Maynard will be on hand answering questions and answering media questions about the Seattle Founders Day Festival.* The two-day event runs Saturday and Sunday August 11 and 12 from 10am to 10pm on Second Avenue between Blanchard and Battery.

 A guided mini-tour of some of the highlights of the Bell’s Town Tour will follow the party and Greener Cab pedicabs will be available. The mini-tour begins at 6pm, just in time for the start of the Second Friday Belltown Artwalk.