This opinion piece comes from our news partners at KIRO Radio.
The City of Seattle opened a brand-new “transfer station” in Wallingford late last year. As this is a modern “city dump” in progressive Seattle, along with places to unload trash and recyclables, the facility also includes a terrific new park and playground (as Dori Monson railed about at the time
But there’s one problem. The park doesn’t have an official name, and one local blog
says that people are starting to call it “Dump Park.”
Can’t we all just agree right now that a much better official name would be “J.P. Patches City Dump Park”?
I tried and failed several years ago to have the entire transfer station named for the Pacific Northwest’s favorite TV clown.
Chris Wedes, who played J.P. for 50+ years on TV and in real life, was a friend and mentor, and one of the most talented, kind and generous people I’ve ever met. As I’ve written here before, even years after Chris’ death, J.P.’s legacy
Jean Godden, then a Seattle City Councilmember (and always a good friend and “Patches Pal”) helped with the transfer station naming effort back in 2011 and 2012. It was tough to get support from the rest of the council, and all that got named for J.P. was a little room inside the transfer station where kids get to look through windows at the garbage and garbage trucks – think of it as an “ICU2TV” for aspiring waste managers. (Note: Former City Councilman Nick Licata also said he liked the idea
of "The J.P. Patches City Dump.")
With the J.P. Patches and Gertrude statue just a few blocks away in Fremont, naming the transfer station park and playground for J.P. is a no-brainer. By the way, for you uninitiated recent arrivals, J.P. hosted a kids’ show on KIRO TV from 1958 to 1981, and it was set at the City Dump.
If you support this effort, there are several ways to help remember and commemorate the great J.P. Patches by officially naming the transfer station park.
Here’s a custom “Patches Pal Checklist” (J.P. loved his checklist!) of how you can become civically active for your favorite clown:
1. Show your support in the COMMENTS on this article.
2. Share this article on social media.
4. Reach out via email to Seattle Public Utilities general manager and CEO Mami Hara
and let her know, too.
One word of caution, Patches Pals: even if the park is officially named for J.P., I’m guessing that “Dump Park” (for short) might really catch on!
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