Letter to the editor: The ‘Essence of Edmonds,’ as experienced by a visitor



For nearly four years, my son and I have been visiting Edmonds from the Portland area when we have Seattle activities, or just for our favorite weekend getaway. We discovered this beautiful place during a Rick Steves travel festival. The Harbor Inn is a great hotel with wonderful people who care running it. We get a Christmas card every year that they all have signed. Our Seattle activities are definitely fun, but our precious vacation time and dollars are also well-spent staying and living around a more true kind of life and liveliness that is Edmonds. There is already more to do in and around Edmonds than we have been able to get to in four years.

We love this place for its natural beauty, and the community. The Essence of Edmonds has been well documented here many times from many perspectives; I do not need to repeat and could likely not improve upon all that has been told in words and beautiful photos. Thank you to all who contribute. Big thank you to Teresa for this rare and truly progressive journalism that provides impartial access to news about Edmonds, including political activity and conversation. Yes, I do subscribe 🙂

As much as we love this place, we would not stay in any hotel that compromised this community. I would not purchase any condo that did the same, even if it were somehow affordable with my good, but single, tech income. This is because we understand that it is not just about profit, or our family’s immediate pleasure. We wouldn’t even stay at Harbor Inn if such compromise occurred. It would not be the same quality of experience. Most of all, I could not vote with my dollars for destruction. What a unique treat to be able to experience a natural marsh with just a short walk, or really at all. It is enough knowing that Harbor Square is already built on part of that marsh. But that happened many years ago before the impacts were so widely understood. I can’t imagine or support further destruction, given all that we now know.

Being from a suburb south of Portland, I know the pain of a commoditized view. The South Waterfront development bought and blocked views of Mt. Hood and Mt. Saint Helens, as well as the Willamette River. My daily last fresh breath of why I am here, before being consumed by work, is gone. These views are so much more than discreet things to conquer and acquire. They are very much a quality of life factor for the entire community.

I am reaching out to those of this community who do get it, who understand and comprise this Essence of Edmonds… please, please vote. It is so easy to get historical facts, analysis and perspectives from subject matter experts, residents, and insiders- and still more reasons to stand up- right here. Please research and use your logic and your wisdom, and vote to protect Edmonds in a truly progressive way.

Allison Harless

3 Replies to “Letter to the editor: The ‘Essence of Edmonds,’ as experienced by a visitor”

  1. Thank you, Allison… for reminding us of the natural beauty, unique & valuable ecosystems, character & charm, and Community that make Edmonds a special place from a visitor’s perspective. Sometimes it’s too easy for some that have lived here for many years to take these things for granted and also neglect the importance of tourism to our local economy.

    Edmonds truly is a great place to spend a day or a lifetime. To keep it that way, our shoreline features including the Edmonds Marsh Wildlife Sanctuary are important elements that need protection. Shouldn’t they be regarded as central elements to any redevelopment plans for associated properties, rather than development constraints? Otherwise, the risks of being wrong regarding environmental impacts and our Community are too great.

    As stated by Theodore Roszak, “Communities exist for the health and enjoyment of those who live in them, not for the convenience of those who drive through them, fly over them, or exploit their real estate for profit.”

    I only hope that voters heed your thoughtful advice and are keeping these perspectives in mind.


  2. Allison,
    Beautifully written. Thank you! A few years ago my wife Heather Marks and I joined forces with Lora Petso, her husband Colin, and other neighbors in SW Edmonds to prevent the destruction of trees and meadow owned by the school district. After much perseverance, we saved half the 11 acres, which became Hickman Park. Seeing first-hand the amount of work and expertise Lora donated to the cause, Heather and I have supported her for any elected position she chooses to pursue. If elected to the Port Commission she can play a huge role in preserving the Edmonds Marsh. Kristiana Johnson, reunning for re-election to the City Council has also pledged to protect the marsh. They both have our vote!


  3. Thank you for writing. I hope many people read this and vote accordingly.
    The Essence of Edmonds………..could be a new city slogan!!!??!!


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