Teatro ZinZanni has a great show in Seattle’s Sodo Park

Coming Home is such a fitting title for the return of the Teatro ZinZanni’s production now being celebrated after its long awaited return to Seattle. The terrible events of 2020/21 that closed the show and the vintage 1910 circus tent had left a real void in the entertainment scene in the Pacific Northwest.

SODO Park, 3200 1st Ave S, Seattle

Now the show is back, this time in an old warehouse in SODO Park on Seattle’s south side. This is a limited edition run, now showing until February 19, 2023. The ZinZanni tradition of love, chaos and of course dinner is alive and well at this vintage venue. No tent, but a full bar is open, and the coat check room is in a huge old walk-in safe.

They make a stiff cocktail!

Curtains open, ready to be seated

Photo of menu items courtesy ZinZanni website

When you are seated, you will find the first course of your four course meal at your table. Tonight it was a wild mushroom tart with thyme-infused Madeira cream sauce. Second course was pumpkin soup with coconut and green chili sambal. The main course was your choice of meat, fish or vegetarian entrée. Chai panna cotta with a  blood orange glaze wraps up your feast for dessert. The four courses are brought to your table throughout the evening, at reasonable intervals, and not disruptive to the show.

The old warehouse becomes home to actors

The band, complete with Grand Piano

Now on with the performance! The setting here is an old warehouse of some kind. The trappings for the “Coming Home” show covered most, but not all of the old warehouse interior. Elaborate lights and sound systems were in place and provided technical support. The band was seated on an actual stage, and my did that small group of musicians put out an amazing variety of sounds.

Not enough can be said about the talented cast! Ben Wendel and Rachel Nehmer make up Duo Madrona, trapeze artist extraordinaire.  What they do is heart stopping!

Rizo is more than a superb vocalist. Her passion flows in every verse she sings, and her ability to hold a note seemingly forever will captivate you.

Vita Radionova defies the laws of physics with her contortion and hula hoop performance. As her act progresses, the number of hoops she uses increase!

Manuela Horn is the 6’2″ tall Yodeling Dominatrix. Yes, that’s what I said. Her antics keep everyone in stiches, and her interaction with one hapless audience member, well, it was interesting.

Elena Gatilova is a former World Champion of rhythmic gymnastics, and you won’t believe what she does on a suspended ring. Plus she is an excellent comedic actor.

Domitil Aillot trained at an internationally renowned Circus School in Paris. What he does with a stack of chairs from floor to ceiling will blow your mind, as will his performance on the Chinese Pole!

Michael Evolution is a world-class basketball freestyle juggler. Never heard of one? You are in for a treat! What this man does with three basketballs defies gravity!

Kevin Kent was a cast member of the original Teatro ZinZanni show in Seattle in 1998. His improvisation skills are unmatched, and his interactions with audience members in many different scenarios will have you surprised and in stiches. Enough said…

The Teatro Zinzanni trademark

Sher and Maj as taken by the Official Photographer

We were so glad when we heard that Teatro Zinzanni was back in business in Seattle. The new location works fine, and the cast, band and crew make for a delightful entertainment event. Learn more about the cast, band, menus and other points of information at the Teatro ZinZanni’s websiteDon’t miss a chance to catch this evening of love, chaos and dinner.

Hot chili on a cold night

Seattle was seeing a very rare 6 inch snowfall. Our grandson was home on a school snow day. And more snow was in the forecast as well. Seemed like a great night to have chili for supper.

A perfect snow day meal!

Our son-in-law made a crock pot full of tasty, hot and spicy chili. It included chili hot beans, diced tomatoes, black beans and elbow macaroni. I know he used some chili powder and other secret ingredients. Topped off with fresh diced onions and shredded cheese we all had a warm and filling supper suitable for a cold snowy night. Our son-in-law and daughter are both great cooks.

Winter snows hit Seattle

December in Seattle area has begun with up to 6 inches of snow on the ground, surpassing the average total yearly snow fall in one event! Our grandson had a snow day, and we were able to explain to him what a “snow day” was.

About mid way through the 6 inch accumulation

Wonder how many kids in Seattle have seen rabbit tracks?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After 120 years of record-keeping, Seattle has witnessed just six white Christmases. The most recent White Christmas was in 2017. In that year 1.0 inches of snow fell at the city’s official reporting site at Sea-Tac Airport. Seattle’s winter weather is limited greatly by the Pacific Ocean, where temperatures stay fairly even throughout the year. Our daughter shared with us that snow removal equipment is few and far between out here, understandable as snow plows are rarely needed.

 

Burgermaster a Seattle area fixture for decades

Burgermaster began in 1952, and currently there are five in the Seattle area. Our daughter suggested we go there for supper before we went to see the Christmas lights.

No missing the name

Lots of parking, inside dining to the right

 

 

 

 

 

Sher and I were surprised to see what looked like an old fashioned drive-in, complete with car hops. (No, they were not on roller skates) No speakers to place orders here, the car hops had hand held devices to take our order. Large menu boards were prominently placed in front of each parking spot.

Fish hot from the fryer, lots of fries and slaw

Sher took a bite before I got the picture, rings to the right

 

 

 

 

 

I had the fish and chips, three pieces of “hand breaded in house” cod with a huge portion of fries and a small cup of slaw.  Sher had one of her favorites: grilled cheese with a slice of onion and a slice of tomato. Her side was onion rings, thus we were able to share and enjoy both fries and rings. Our grandson wanted a hot dog, and it was split into three slices and served on a hamburger bun. I’d never seen that served in a restaurant that way. He loved it!

The big menu board

Now you know where we were

 

 

 

 

 

All in all the food was good, served hot and quickly. We actually enjoyed eating in the car with our grandson between us. Our daughter and son-in-law were of course in the front, and enjoyed their burgers.  We all had great conversation and good food and drinks.

Santa lights the Christmas Tree in Snohomish, Washington

We went with family to Snohomish last evening for the lighting of the Snohomish Christmas tree, just outside the Carnegie Library building.

Christmas songs waiting for Santa

Here comes Santa and Mrs. Claus

Santa lit the tree, and what a bright tree it was!

Sher and Maj hope you are all enjoying the start of the 2022 Christmas Season. The preparation and anticipation are all part of the Joy of the Season. 

Birthday celebration at Everett’s Kyoto Japanese restaurant

Our chef for the evening

Sher and I celebrated our daughter’s birthday with her family at the Kyoto Japanese restaurant in Everett, Washington. This eatery is one of the “meal cooked at your table” establishments, with your chef putting on a show along with the food preparation.

The menu was awesome with a very wide variety of dinner combinations. As Sher is a vegetarian she picked a vegetable medley, and the chef was most accommodating and made her fried rice without the addition of eggs.

Preparing the onion tower

Flaming onion tower

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The antics of our chef were most entertaining. His skill in manipulating the tools were remarkable and fun to watch. He could do things with the knife and spatula that were hard to imagine. And I had no idea you could do things with the eggs that we witnessed.

Plum wine imported from Osaka

Fried rice on the way

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The food was absolutely delicious. The chef kept us entertained throughout his preparation of our individual dishes. His constant banter was filled with quips and humor. Once he flipped a large pat of butter into the air before it landed on the rice. He deadpanned “ah, butterfly”.  Chef flipped pieces of chicken across the grill directly onto our grandson’s plate. He loved that!

Happy Birthday song with tambourine and gong!

We all had a delightful meal and enjoyed each other’s company. And to top things off, the staff brought our daughter ice cream with candles, and the whole place sang Happy Birthday!

 

See an Elf in every point of light

Yes, that is what this pair of glasses claims, and we kind of have proof that it works. At “The Lights of Christmas” event last night we saw several kids at Santa’s Village store with cardboard framed glasses that looked like the 3D ones you get at the movies.

front

front

back

back

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

OK, we mentioned proof that these work.     Wait for it…      Wait for it…

No, not wearing the Elf glasses

(Cue drum roll) Are you ready???

Wearing the Elf glasses

Ta-Da!!! The thing actually works. Not bad entertainment for two bucks.

“The Lights of Christmas” celebrates 25 years

The Warm Beach Camp & Conference Center, a well known and popular camp, conference and retreat center has been in Stanwood, Washington since 1956. Stanwood is north of Seattle and south of Bellingham. In 1997 it opened the first “Lights of Christmas” event on the beautiful wooded grounds. Please note that our iPhone photos do not due justice to the quantity and quality of this wonderful festival of lights!

A waterfall in lights

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here we are getting into the Spirit of the Season

Sher and I went with our daughter, son-in-law and grandson to see this attraction, billed as the largest Christmas Festival in the Pacific Northwest. It features over one million lights and of course Christmas themed light displays. We started our idle speed driving tour with the purchase of some absolutely warm and decadent mini-donuts and a bag of freshly popped kettle corn. By tuning your car radio to a particular FM station you get some great Christmas music, some good clean humor and an excellent background program.

 

Festive canoes

The whales are here!

 

 

 

 

Tall ship in lights

In the past patrons had left their vehicles for out of vehicle activities like the train rides. The website calls out a lack of staff this year, so you stay inside your vehicle, with the exception of the snack bar/store and Santa’s Village areas. Santa’s Village and store was, for us, quite a walk from the parking. Restroom breaks and stopping at Santa’s Village aside, the drive time through the lights takes a little over 30 minutes.

Santa gets a break talking to kids

What a remarkable event this has become over the past 25 years. What started out as an idea to keep the Camp & Conference Center busy during the slow winter holiday season has turned into the holiday highlight for thousands of Pacific Northwest families each year. This is a delightful attraction, and we heartily recommend it.

Tickets must be purchased online before arriving at the event to control the attendance numbers. Admission costs are per vehicle and are very reasonable. This is The Lights of Christmas website. Dates, times and all other information is provided here.