Purchase tickets for Vino in the Village – April 29, 2023

March 16, 2023. Now is the time to purchase your tickets for Vino in the Village to be held from 6-9 pm on April 29th. Many thanks to our title sponsor, Compass Washington. Thanks also to our fabulous Magnolia Village business hosts. Click here to learn more about the wineries. This popular event always sells out quickly. If you are a Magnolia Chamber business, family, or individual member, please insert your promo code for ticket savings – contact Jason at jason@discovermagnolia.org for assistance. Then, please join us and sip, savor, and stroll through Magnolia Village on April 29th. Sip, sip, hooray!

Reimagine Magnolia Village project and volunteer leadership – a perfect combination

March 15, 2021. The Queen Anne Magnolia News ran a front-page feature on Cheryl McQuiston, who has been the driving force behind the Reimagine Magnolia Village beautification project. The article shares that her skills in fundraising and coordinating events have served her well as she organized a team of hardworking volunteers that has helped the Village’s streetscape improvements take shape.

To read the article online at QA/Magnolia News click here or read below

Magnolia’s Cheryl McQuiston has always been a social person, but it has taken her entire life to realize the full potential of this gift.

Since 2018, McQuiston has been the driving force of the Magnolia Village Beautification Project and was recognized in 2020 as the Person of the Year by the Magnolia Chamber of Commerce.

“I hadn’t known how much I affected other people until this,” she said.

McQuiston was born and raised in Seattle’s Seward Park neighborhood and attended Franklin High School. She remembers enjoying her Spanish classes and home economics, but what she really excelled at was socializing. Her ability to talk to anyone and make friends with everyone she met would become a very important skill for the career she had yet to discover.

It wasn’t until she and her husband moved to Magnolia and later enrolled their daughter at Our Lady of Fatima that she first heard of event planning and raising money as a career. McQuiston remembers that the school was looking for someone to help with the annual auction and a neighbor recommended her because she was organized, detail-oriented and known among her friends for having the “cleanest counters in town.”

Since she was only working part time at the time, McQuiston decided to help out. Her attention to detail and highly organized events changed the way the school ran their fundraiser.

Soon enough, her daughter advanced to Holy Names High School, and McQuiston got to work upgrading its annual fundraiser as well. It was around this time that she launched her own business to plan events and improve fundraising efforts for her clients. McQuiston said it was always a very rewarding experience and that she really enjoyed the work.

When her husband grew ill, she retired from her fundraising work to care for him full time. That retirement was never meant to last, however. Not long after he passed in 2013, Franklin High School started planning its 50-year reunion. Friends reached out to ask for help, and McQuiston was grateful for the opportunity to stay busy and reawaken her passion for building community.

Since then, most of McQuiston’s projects have been closer to home and with the people and organizations that she loves most. About five years ago, she began working on the Reimagine Magnolia Village beautification project to raise money to add tables, chairs and other visual improvements to Magnolia’s village streetscape. She is so invested in it that she has even referred to it as the culmination of her life’s work.

‘Reimagine’ beautification project

Jason Thibeaux, the executive director for the Magnolia Chamber of Commerce, said he had been daydreaming about doing something to spruce up the village area and committed to it during a community meeting.

“I thought we could do better for Magnolia, and I just needed the people that would be willing to do the work with me,” Thibeaux said.

McQuiston was one of the first people to whom he reached out, and he said she was the absolute perfect person for this project. She started work by talking with friends, neighbors and community members and eventually formed a team.

She often used the Starbucks on McGraw as an unofficial office. One morning, she found herself talking to resident Don Gillmore as he tried to enjoy a cup of coffee. Gillmore, an architect, also happens to be the project manager for the Building Excellence Capitol Levy for Seattle Public Schools. McQuiston put his talent and expertise as a member of the beautification committee to help design the project, create construction drawings and coordinating the permits and work with city department.

“Cheryl has a way with people and her dedication and fundraising blow me away,” Gillmore said. “We had tried to do something about a decade ago but could not find a way to make it work.”

Gillmore said the most amazing part has been seeing the teamwork to get fund raise and complete the different phases of the village project: “neighbors, city, grants, permitting, everybody working together.”

Ann Goos, chamber member and communications consultant, has acted as McQuiston’s right hand throughout this process and has found a lot of joy in it. She described the team as dedicated and talented.

“I’ve never been engaged in something more fulfilling because of the camaraderie that Cheryl created,” Goos said.

She said McQuiston’s leadership and ability to find talent is rare and delightful. She also called out McQuiston’s efforts to expand the team with an eye for the future.

As this project heads into its final installments, McQuiston has put a lot of thought into who will manage the necessary repairs and upgrades in the future. She is thankful for the involvement of the younger members of the team, Julie Bennett and Vixen owner Corean Napolitano, and is currently looking for ways to include more community members so that the project will remain successful for future generations.

McQuiston said leading the Reimagine Magnolia Village streetscape beautification project has been a rewarding experience and exciting to see what’s happened to the community. She has noticed more people in the Village and a real sense of neighborhood pride.

For more information about the Reimagine Magnolia Village beautification project, visit www.discovermagnolia.org or magnoliabeautification.com/.

Expanded Web Design Program For Small Businesses And Minority Students

March 14, 2023. Do you need a new Square website? The Seattle Office of Economic Development is pleased to announce the Youth Web Design Program is expanding.

Spots will fill up fast, so don’t wait! The Seattle Office of Economic Development is honored to partner with Kay Tita, Urban League, Good Will, and Square and excited to announce they will be working with Franklin High School students.

Please find eligibility, benefits, a timeline and where to apply below. The program is 100% FREE. 


  • A brand new integrated square website 
  • Technical skills to maintain and update website as needed 
  • Professional product photo shoot ( up to 10 products) 
  • 2 Years domain registrant expenses covered
  • 2 Years Square hosting expenses covered.


  • Located in Seattle, WA with a City of Seattle Business License
  • Participating businesses cannot be a 501(c)(3) non profit 
  • Business and Occupation (B &O) taxes must be paid in full
  • Do not have a website, or website is not current, functional or updatable 


  • Digital Sales Access Program Participants


  • Businesses to receive digital storytelling assets
  • Increased Efficiency, Speed, and Accuracy
  • Expanded payment capabilities
  • Inventory management
  • Simplified accounting and reporting
  • Leverage relevant tools to integrate current and future customer base 
  • A reliable team dedicated to supporting selected business owner(s).


  • March 18th – April 18th – Business Photo Shoot
  • April 18th & April 20th – Youth Training 
  • April 25th & April 27th – Youth Training 
  • May 2nd & May 4th – Youth Training
  • May 6th – Youth & Business Design
  • May 13th – Youth & Business Design 
  • May 20th – Youth & Business Design 

Link to apply HERE

March 4th – Cruise Season Hiring Kicks Off

Saturday, March 4 | 10:00 am to 4:00 pm
Bell Street Pier Cruise Terminal
2225 Alaskan Way, Seattle, 98121

Summer jobs are available in Seattle and Alaska! Join the Port of Seattle at the 2023 cruise job fair and meet with employers hiring for part-time and full-time positions at Pier 66 and Pier 91 cruise terminals and for Alaska jobs.

Positions available at $20-$25/hour or more from mid-April to October.

Still in school? Employers will work with high school and college students and teachers to accommodate academic schedules. To learn more, click here.

Free Parking
Interviews on site

Magnolia Village Giving Tree Reveal Celebration

The Reimagine Magnolia Village project celebrated its top donors with the Magnolia Village Giving Tree’s reveal, recognizing those who donated $2500 or more to the Magnolia Village beautification efforts. Hosted by the Magnolia Chamber’s Beautification Committee and emceed by Cheryl McQuiston, Chairperson of the project, the event attracted about 20 donors and supporters.

The permanent installation features a beautiful sculptured tree with leaves naming the donors who have most generously given to the streetscape improvements, including tables, chairs, red umbrellas and decorative posts that hang seasonal banners, wreaths, and cascading flower displays. The recognition giving tree installation is located just west of the entrance to the Magnolia Village Starbuck’s facing W. McGraw Street.

Importantly, the celebration also heralded the last two phases of the Reimagine Magnolia Village Project, which first launched in October 2019. Phases IV & V are in the works, and fundraising has begun. McQuiston reminded the celebrants that February is the “Month of Love” fundraising campaign. All donations up too $25,000 will be matched, doubling a donors impact, thanks to an anonymous donor.

To donate to Phases IV & V and double the value of your gift, click here.

SW Magnolia Pilot Streetlight Project Update

January 31, 2023

Introduction: Replacing aging streetlights in SW Magnolia.  Early in 2022, Seattle City Light reached out to the Magnolia Chamber of Commerce to discuss a proposed pilot project to replace streetlights in the southwest area of Magnolia (see map below).

The Chamber elicited the advice and counsel of Dave Goodell, a Magnolia resident who is experienced in lighting and electronics. He agreed to serve as the lead in collaborating with Seattle City Light on behalf of the Chamber. Dave has 42 years of experience in the lighting industry, working in sales, design, and consultation. He was Lighting Certified by the National Council on Qualifications for Lighting Professions (NCQLP) for 25 years, demonstrating his knowledge and experience across the lighting professions. He is a past member of the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America. His professional credentials and working experience have been invaluable in assisting the Magnolia Chamber to navigate the public phases of the streetlight pilot project and collaborating with Seattle City Light over the last year.

Seattle City Light has launched the streetlight pilot project, as the streetlights in this area of Magnolia are approximately 50 years old. Therefore, the streetlights are at the end of their lifecycle and must be brought up to the existing environmental codes. After discussions about the project with the Chamber, a flyer explaining the SW Magnolia streetlight project was mailed out to the affected Seattle City Light customers in mid-November 2022.

The project aims to seek a consensus on one of three options for streetlight effectiveness and designs and replace approximately 350 streetlights around SW Magnolia.Consistent with other utilities in our state and consumer preferences, older street illumination lights are being replaced with LED lighting (see location of the three options, below). The environmental benefits are great. LED streetlights are more energy efficient, use no toxic elements such as mercury, distribute light better with less energy waste, and have considerably longer life spans than traditional fluorescent or incandescent lighting. In addition, innovations in LED lighting have improved the illumination experience for users.

The Magnolia streetlight project also recognizes that effective and well-placed street lighting improves pedestrian visibility and personal security. Streetlights increase safety by allowing pedestrians and motorists to see each other. It also adds to property safety and street side aesthetics. In addition, it can help reduce vandalism and improve neighborhood security. Finally, attractive streetlight fixtures can enhance a neighborhood’s appeal and sense of design.

Some stops and starts in the streetlight project. As mentioned, Seattle City Light mailed an initial informational flyer to Magnolia’s impacted Seattle City Light customers in November 2022. The flyer proposed three new pilot streetlight designs, with three different decorative “post-top” light fixtures, and the three options were installed along specific areas of West Viewmont.

The intention was to encourage residents to look at the three streetlight designs following dusk and seek feedback on preferences from the community by January 13, 2023. Seattle City Light established an online survey to make the process easy to access and fill out.

However, due to the misplacement of the pilot streetlights, the time it took for relocation, and a delay in the electrification of the pilot streetlights, the feedback date was extended to February 24th. In addition, the Magnolia Community Council engaged in the process and had specific concerns, questions, and resident feedback to share with the project leadership. As a result, Seattle City Light held additional informational meetings with concerned residents to address new problems and further describe the streetlight project in SW Magnolia.

The community engagement process helped to clarify details about the project. For instance, SCL explained that the decorative post-top light fixture options are specific to the underground wired section of SW Magnolia. In addition, residents shared concerns that the original survey focused on aesthetics. Yet, the project must also assess the functionality of streetlights in protecting pedestrians’ and motorists’ safety and reducing criminal activities. SCL welcomed additional public comments and extended the survey deadline to February 24th.

Next Steps. The Magnolia Chamber of Commerce encourages affected residents in SW Magnolia to visit the three streetlight options on Viewmont Way at night. After evaluating the three options, residents can go online at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/magnoliapilotstreetlights and vote for their favorite streetlight based on lighting effectiveness to protect pedestrians and motorists and for visual attractiveness.

Three reasons to join the Magnolia Chamber of Commerce in a time of uncertainty

January 9, 2023
Special to the Magnolia Chamber
Christina Metcalf

Times of economic uncertainty doesn’t cause anyone to look for new ways to spend money. But there are some investments in your business that, even when you’re worried about cash flow, are worth the return. Without those necessities—be they software or services—you couldn’t operate. Chamber membership is one of those necessary business investments, and here’s why:

Uncertain Times Mean Unprecedented Business Challenges

According to a survey released in early January by the National Association for Business Economics, more than half of respondents believe the U.S. is headed toward a recession in the next 12 months. An additional 11% of those polled think the economy is already in a recession. (A recession is commonly defined as two consecutive quarters of shrinking growth). However, the severity and depth of the possible recession are matters of debate among most economists and market experts. 

Whether we face a recession or not, growth is slow. Costs are up. Shelves are not as full as they once were. Some industries are already claiming a recession has hit them.

In times of economic uncertainty, businesses have greater needs than usual. It helps to have a partner looking out for your best interests. The chamber is in a unique position to provide that assistance for a minimal investment.

The Hidden Job Market

One of the reasons economists are slow to call what we’re in currently “a recession” is because the job market on average remains strong. Employers are hiring. Sometimes their hiring needs are even outpacing available, skilled candidates.

Through chamber membership, you receive two types of job assistance—help in finding positions and candidates. If you’re looking for a job, you can network and locate available opportunities in the hidden job market (before they come available). Membership helps you get to know hiring managers and business owners, making a job search much easier and improving your chances of finding your dream job.

On the other hand, as a hiring entity, you will be in a solid position to get to know potential job candidates who aren’t actively looking for work. This is often one of the easiest ways to find top performers. Plus, connecting with possible job candidates on a professional level outside of the office can assist you in getting to know them better than you would through a 30-minute interview. This helps to ensure a stronger hire and better fit for your organization.

Public Sector Assistance & Advocacy

Whether you have your eye on pro-business legislation or are worried about a zoning issue, like anything else, business often goes your way based on who you know. As a chamber member, your concern over business—your own or the entire business community—is amplified. When the chamber speaks to city, state, or federal leaders, they are speaking on behalf of all businesses. This gives your concerns more power among elected leaders.

The chamber may also be able to help by placing your request in context in the larger picture. The zoning problem you’re having isn’t just about your business property but all properties moving forward. The chamber is well-suited to propose “if, then” scenarios that can help you get the assistance you need quickly.

Economic Development

While economic development of the area may not seem like a pressing issue in your mind right now, it helps keep you in business, regardless of your industry. A strong local economy can help maintain prosperity even when the national economy is struggling like the minority-business owners did along Auburn Avenue in Atlanta in the 1930s. While the rest of the country was experiencing the dark crash of ’29 and subsequent depression, Auburn Avenue thrived because its interests were protected.

The chamber is dedicated to building community and ushering in smart economic growth so everyone can thrive. Chamber membership not only safeguards your business interests and helps you achieve your own goals but improves the business community, and thus the community, for all.

Christina Metcalf is a writer/ghostwriter who believes in the power of story. She works with small businesses, chambers of commerce, and business professionals who want to make an impression and grow a loyal customer/member base. She loves road trips, hates exclamation points, and believes the world would be a better place if we all had our own theme song that played when we entered the room. What would yours be?


Twitter: @christinagsmith

Facebook: @tellyourstorygetemtalking

2022 Person and Business of the Year – now is the time to nominate a person and business who makes a difference!

It is time to celebrate the individuals and businesses who have demonstrated leadership, had an impact in our community, and made a difference for Magnolia in 2022.
Do you know a community volunteer who goes above and beyond to make Magnolia a great place to live? Do you see a business that demonstrates leadership, growth, and involvement in the community and is dedicated to making an impact right here in Magnolia?

If yes, please help us celebrate leadership and excellence and nominate a Person of the Year and a Business of the Year for 2022.

Below reflect the qualifications for the Person of the Year 2022 nominations.

Please briefly describe how the Person of the Year nominee does the following:

  • Makes significant contributions to the Magnolia community as they relate to improving the business climate, quality of life, or enhancing social interactions
  • Has had or made a positive impact on improving the Magnolia community
  • Demonstrates a deep commitment to Magnolia by giving their time, talent, and energy, as well as their lasting effect or legacy, to our community

Below reflects the characteristics for Business of the Year nominations.

Please briefly describe how the Business of the Year nominee:

  • Provides innovative products or services
  • Delivers exemplary customer service 
  • Encourages and provides professional development of their staff
  • Volunteers in the Magnolia community
  • Actively carries out the MCC mission of adding vibrancy to the community

The Magnolia Chamber of Commerce’s board of directors will review the nominations for the two awards and select the 2022 recipients, who will be publicly announced and honored with awards and recognition. 

Please submit your nomination(s) for either or both the Person of the Year and Business of the Year via email by December 27, 2022. Your nomination(s) should be sent to: info@discovermagnolia.org. Thank you!  

Winterfest 2022: Kick-Off the Holiday Season in the Magnolia Village


Winterfest 2022 – Saturday, December 3rd!

Join us in the Magnolia Village for a day filled with events to kick-off the holiday season, starting with pancake breakfast & hot chocolate offerings, lunch specials, afternoon family activities, and into the evening with adult gatherings.

Below is the Winterfest 2022 overview. Follow Discover Magnolia Facebook and Instagram channels to keep up with activities as they are continuously added!

  • Starbucks: 6am – 5pm. Enjoy a 12 oz hot chocolate for $3.00.
  • Petit Pierre Bakery: 7:30am – 4pm. Grab a Winterfest hot chocolate, topped with homemade marshmallows and crushed peppermint. A portion of proceeds will benefit the Magnolia Beautification Project.
  • Magnolia Lutheran Church – Swedish Pancake Breakfast: 8am – 12:30pm. Annual holiday tradition. Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for children. All proceeds go to charity.
  • Unravel Therapeutics: 9:30am – 8:30 pm. Drop by and purchase unique gifts and services just right for the discerning gift giver.
  • Mondello Lunch Special: 12pm – 3pm. Enjoy your choice of fettuccine primavera or lasagna with tiramisu for $23.
  • Figurehead Brewery: 12pm start – while supplies last. Cookie decorating and free hot chocolate for the kids!
  • VR Bubble Shop: 12pm – 8pm – 50% off all VR gaming activities.              
  • American Dance Institute. Free dance classes for various age groups – Children’s Hip Hop (ages 8-10) at 1:30pm – 2:20pm. Children’s Creative Dance (ages 3.5-5) at 3:00pm-3:45pm. Pre-Ballet (ages 5-7) at 4:00pm-4:50pm. Pre-registration required: https://www.americandanceinstitute.com/magnolia-village-winterfest
  • Magnolia Garden Center Family Photos Opportunity by Julie Bennett, Coldwell Banker Bain: 2pm – 4pm. Get your holiday family photos at the Magnolia Garden Center and enjoy an excellent opportunity to pick out your Christmas tree or wreaths. Photographs by Julie will be available and features a festive Magnolia Garden Center backdrop. Proceeds from your purchase for a digital download will be donated to the Reimagine Magnolia Village beautification project. Additional photo gifts are also available.
  • Magnolia Dental Care: 4pm. Ornament decorating for homegrown holiday arts and crafts.
  • Key Bank, Magnolia Branch: 4pm – 6pm. Kids will create whimsical and craft-tastic Paper Lights Garlands, making a fun and distinctive holiday decoration.
  • Serendipity Lounge: 3pm – 5pm. Enjoy the sounds of one of our favorite local bands, Magnolia Steel and Rik & Lisa in the Serendipity Lounge.
  • Magnolia Cooperative Preschool: 4:30pm – 6pm. Enjoy hot chocolate & warming stations at the Magnolia Cooperative Playground.
  • Carolers in the Village – Magnolia Chorale: 4pm – 6pm. Welcome the sounds of the season with caroling through Magnolia Village. Catch them at the tree lighting at the Garden Center at 5pm!
  • Windermere: 4pm – 8pm. Make holiday memories by getting photos with Santa, one of the most popular attractions!
  • Sell Your Sole: 5pm – 8pm. Celebrate the Grand Opening while enjoying drinks, small bites AND shopping for gifts (or for you!).
  • Magnolia Garden Center: 5pm. The annual tree lighting event to kick off the holiday season along with the Magnolia Chorale carolers and warm beverages.
  • Jingle Bell Cruise: 6pm. In partnership with Werners Crash Shop, car enthusiasts will love the 25 holiday-decorated cars cruise through Magnolia, ending in the Village. Toy donations for Pacific Raceways Toy Drive will be accepted!
  • Magnolia’s Book Store: 6pm – 8pm. Magnolia’s favorite bookstore will be open ’til 8pm. Enjoy some holiday treats from 6pm to closing.
  • Carolers in the Village – The Holidames: 6pm – 8pm. Seasonal song favorites led by Ginger Ann Griffis.
  • Westerly Studio: 6pm – 9pm. It’s the annual holiday art sale! Come for a sip AND shopping for gifts – big and small – from nine local artists.
  • Vixen Collection Day Spa & Boutique: 6pm – 9 pm. Shop for gifts, clothing and beauty products with complimentary adult beverages.
  • Magnolia Village Pub, co-hosted by Shannon Praetorius, Compass Real Estate: 7pm – 9:30pm. Join us for an Ugly Sweater Contest at 7pm; winner will be announced at 9:30 pm. In between, enjoy a holiday trivia event, a selfie booth, food, and drinks. Bring a book for a local charity donation and receive $5 off the first beer.                   
Mug of hot chocolate

Magnolia Community Council update and call to action – learn more

NOVEMBER 14, 2022

The Magnolia Community Council is appealing to the Magnolia community to donate to a legal defense fund to challenge the recent decision by the Seattle Redistricting Commission that fractures the Magnolia neighborhood into two separate council districts.

The Magnolia Community Council is seeking donations to support its legal defense fund with the goal of requesting a judge to order the Commission to follow the redistricting charter and vote for a map that keeps Magnolia in one council district. The Community Council is also seeking registered voters to sign on as an “additional party” to the legal challenge. If interested , the Community Council asks that you reach out to them directly at magnoliacommunityclub@gmail.com.

To learn more and stay connected with the Magnolia Community Council, please click here.