Things to Do: Farmers Market Opening Day, Mini Recycling Event & More

May 19, 2023 | by Sophia Maggio

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Upcoming events on Mercer Island! Plus, don’t miss the Letterboxing Kick-Off Event, Riley Cove Dedication Ceremony, art exhibits, book club events, and more. Details below:

First Friday Art Walk

Friday, June 2nd, 5 pm – 8 pm, at Clarke & Clarke Art + Artifacts and participating locations

At Clarke & Clarke Art + Artifacts, the series “Women at Work” has evolved into “The Language of Art II,” featuring Agnes Lee and six other female artists. Lee draws inspiration from the poems of Li Bai during the Tang Dynasty, embedding poetic lines on both the surface and back of each painting. 

“Women at Work” featuring Alexa Budd and Lindsey Carr (top left and right), Marilyn Bergstrom and Jan Tervonen (middle), Noble Golden (center), and Sharon Carr and Agnes Lee (bottom left and right). Photo courtesy Ginny Clarke

On First Friday, stop by Clarke & Clarke to meet the artist – Agnes Lee – and learn about the intersection of poetry and painting. Be sure to view works by all seven artists included in the series; then, walk along the block and throughout downtown to see other creative pieces in a casual, stroll-by setting. Participating businesses include Sotheby’s, Barrels Wine Bar, the SZ Gallery, the MIVAL gallery, Coldwell Banker Bain, Cascade Frames, and Aljoya.

First Friday Art Walk – Participating locations

Letterboxing Kick-Off at Pioneer Park

Saturday, June 3rd, 10 am to 1 pm, at Pioneer Park SE

Celebrate the trails at Pioneer Park and kick off your letterboxing adventure. This local tradition begins every year on National Trails Day and ends on October 31st. Begin your journey at the Mercer Island Community & Event Center, where you can pick up your Clue Book starting June 3rd. From there, creating a letterboxing kit is simple: you just need your Clue Book, favorite stamp, and walking shoes. Letterboxes are hidden in Pioneer Park SE. When you find a letterbox, make a “stamp swap”: use your personal stamp to mark the notepad in the letterbox, and then print your Clue Book with the stamp provided in the letterbox.

National Trails Day Clean-Up at Pioneer Park

Saturday, June 3rd, 10 am – 1 pm, at Pioneer Park 

After picking up your Clue Book, join Parks staff for a work party at Pioneer Park in honor of National Trails Day. Spring is growing season, which means it’s time to trim back shrubs and other vegetation on the trails. Wear close-toed shoes and come ready to clear the trails for yearly visitors. Loppers and pruners are provided. To register, please click here.

Photo courtesy City of Mercer Island

Mercer Island Farmers Market: Opening Day

Sunday, June 4th, 10 am – 3 pm, at 7700 SE 32nd Street

Just in time for summer, the Mercer Island Farmers Market (MIFM) announces its opening day. Every year from June through October, the market becomes a staple Sunday activity for families across the island. Per its mission, MIFM aims to connect growers, consumers, and local businesses throughout the island. Stop by for sustainable foods and crafts, as well as an expansive lineup of live music. Before Opening Day, sign up for the farmers market newsletter to receive the 2023 vendor list and stay up-to-date on the latest market news and updates.

Dedication Ceremony for Riley Cove 

Tuesday, June 6th, 4 pm at Lincoln Landing, followed by a 5 pm reception at VFW Hall, 1836 72nd Ave SE

The Mercer Island Historical Society announces a dedication ceremony for Riley Cove, honoring the life and geographic legacy of a local veteran. Riley Cove is named in honor of Huston “Hu” Riley (1921-2011), a lifelong Mercer Island resident and the U.S. soldier featured in the famous “soldier in the surf” photo taken during the Normandy invasion. The name was officially recognized by the Washington State Department of Natural Resources in January 2022 and will soon appear on all national maps of Washington State. Join other locals to dedicate the cove and learn more about Riley’s life, family, and enduring contributions to the Mercer Island community. 

Virtual Knitting Book Club: Nettle & Bone by T. Kingfisher

Thursday, June 8th, 6 pm – 7 pm, online

To connect readers across the island, Island Books hosts a series of online book club meetings facilitated by Lori Robinson. On this cozy June evening, click the Zoom link and come knit or craft while discussing the assigned book: Nettle & Bone by T. Kingfisher. Sip tea, listen to the clacking of needles, and embrace the silence when troublesome patterns interrupt conversation. All levels of knitters (and crafters) are welcome! Please click here to register and visit the event webpage for a thorough description of Nettle & Bone.

Mini Recycling Event

Friday, June 9th, 9 am – noon, at the City Hall Parking Lot, 9611 SE 36th St

Mark your calendars for a mini recycling event with a big impact. In between the spring and fall recycling events, the City is piloting a “mini” version to collect items that are not generally accepted at the larger recycling events. Bring your old paint, TVs, computers, and electronics, as well as any documents you’d like to shred. For a comprehensive list of acceptable waste items, please consult the event webpage.

Photo courtesy City of Mercer Island

Ink Worlds: Puget Sound Sumi Artists

Through Friday, June 23rd, at the Mercer Island Community & Event Center

MIVAL showcases the work of Puget Sound Sumi Artists, a non-profit organization committed to the study of ink painting (Sumi) as well as calligraphy and flower arranging. Using bold, minimalistic strokes, each artist renders their perspective of the world in ink. Stop by Monday through Thursday, 9 am to 7 pm, and Friday and Saturday, 9 am to 5 pm.

Photo courtesy City of Mercer Island

Emergency Preparedness and Field Day

Saturday, June 24th, 9 am – 5 pm, at Luther Burbank Park

Take your emergency preparedness to the next level! At this field day event, learn about the most common hazards in Mercer Island and the Puget Sound, plus the role of ham radio operators in emergency situations. The Mercer Island Radio Operators (MIRO) will demonstrate how to use ham radio operators to communicate during emergencies. Emergency Management volunteers and staff will be available throughout the day to answer any questions, ensuring that attendees leave Field Day feeling safe and prepared.

Open Book Club: Small World by Jonathan Evison

Thursday, June 29th, 7:30 pm – 9 pm, at Island Books

Another month, another Open Book Club! Join fellow readers to discuss Jonathan Evison’s novel, Small World: a story of four modern families and their linked destinies, stemming from five generations of shared history.