Summerfest 2017 Survey

West Seattle Summer Fest

Photo Credit: Andy P. Photography

Thank you to the community for submitting over 365 surveys to the questions we posed about your thoughts about Summer Fest. Your comments WILL shape Summer Fest, 2018. You’ll see more seating, more shade, a dance party, more sidewalk sales, a change up on some food vendors, more food and increased signage.

Congrats to Kim B. for winning the $50 gift card to West 5.

Read on for a sampling of the comments:

I enjoyed the music very much and the turnout was amazing at the stage this year! However, I’d love to see the evening music progress toward more dance music as we get toward the final acts of the evening. People wanted to dance (and some tried), but the dance music never really came.

Would be nice if there were a couple more activities for older kids–the bouncy stuff is great for toddlers, though.

For older/handicap folks, there are too few seating options. If we cannot ‘take five’, we have to go home

I like the carnival style food options but wold also like to see more healthy options too. Due to the number of booths and no sandwich board maps in the streets it was unclear where the kids area was without going to the information booth. How about positioning maps/directories in a few places on California Ave like in a mall?

We would prefer to have the hours go back to 8pm on Friday and Saturday so we can maximize booth sales; for us and for people without storefronts. We noticed what appeared to be less traffic than in years past despite the weather being ideal; dunno if that is due to this festival coinciding with other local festivals.

I loved the Friday night music! It created community, was entertaining, and was easy to dance to. Sat evening wasn’t as fun and wasn’t good for dancing, at least until the closing band. The DJ in the beer garden ws amazing but the vibe was off for the setting. My friends who came to the neighborhood got bored and left early. I stuck around for the closer and was glad I did!

Ate at a food truck. Would love to see more local food trucks too!

The local shop sales are good and the arts, crafts, and imports are great. More arts and crafts! what happened to the henna tattoo person?

I’ve been going to Summerfest for about 20+ years. These past few years I’ve been slightly underwhelmed. I want to see more vendors offering handmade goods and local charm, and less of the tackier booths full of stuff that can be found at any other street fair. I want Summerfest to hold on to that local flavor and feel uniquely West Seattle. I enjoy going every year, but it’s starting to feel a little less special.

Seemed like it went well. Had lots in looking for restrooms. Do they need to be better marked?

I also enjoyed the pop-up musicians along the street that were perhaps sponsored by particular businesses and were not on the stages.

Would be nice to see more new vendors, seemed like same line up as last year. Higher end food booths would also be nice.

I wish the beer garden was dog friendly all weekend instead of just Friday. It would have been nice to have more local beer at the beer garden. I attended Friday and Saturday. For the mayor candidate questioning and answering, less candidates and more shade. Some candidates were a waste of time and took away from the more serious candidates.

So many “festival” wear booths, I would like to see more quality work.

I loved Summer Fest every year and appreciate all the time and energy the Junction Association ours into it. This year the layout seemed to have even more thought out into it. Plaza Park was well used with the Sustainable stage and booths right there, to name a few of the nice touches. I also thought it smart to use the old farmers market lot for a ride to spread out. That said, the Kids Area had very little for kids older than say, seven. We miss the Wrecking Ball and the spinning chair thing (one person at a time in the ride). Maybe two things were good for older kids. We normally buy a weekend wrist band for our kids but nothing grabbed him so we opted for a Saturday pass and let him just go on the few rides he was interested in over and over and over. Thursday night set up time is always fun for families, Bubbles Man was awesome as ever. Elliott Bay’s guest funk band was so much fun. We actually heard the music from our house Fri night and ca me back out to the festival to listen to them! Otherwise the music was just okay – loved Sisters and was glad to see them show.

It would’ve been nice to have seating other than the beer garden. It left families and non-drinking folks to stand earlier in the day. Most of us weren’t in attendance late in the evening. Thanks

Pretty fun but would like to see much more unique food truck vendors and more local artists not just the same chinese knockoff vendors.

The music is a big draw for me. I miss having two official stages. Somehow we stumbled upon Eldridge Gravy and the Supreme Court–I didn’t even see them on the website!? They were AMAZING.

Would love game booths like the county fair might be worth while. I don’t really need stuff, so games are fun and kinda retro.re blues, funk, swing, and other danceable music (which isn’t dance club dance music).

It would be very helpful if tables were set up at the far east end of Alaska for people to sit and eat what they have just bought. Please, consider this – we decided to eat elsewhere because there was no place to sit.

I miss the kids musicians. Would be great next year if you coul get the kids stage set back up. It has been a few years since you have had that.

liked the children’s play areas, but thought the passes were too expensive; a half day option that starts at 1 or 2 pm would have been nice (half price on Sunday started at 4pm with one hour left) especially given the long lines.

locally-owned food trucks, more food vendors in/near the beer garden. I didn’t stop in the beer garden because it seems out of the way with no dining options.

I happened to walk by Dance Powered on the stage on Sunday and thought it was just the kind of thing we need. Tons of people dancing and lots of spectators. And it’s local.

It is always nice, but it similar each year and it would be nice mixing it up more. Whether more new vendors or different special events / activities – it’d be nice doing new things

We brought our daughter to the kids’ area on Friday and purchased some tickets for her to play in the inflatables. We weren’t able to use all our tickets that evening and returned on Sunday to get our money’s worth. We were dismayed to learn that the carnival company sells color-coded tickets that are only valid on the day of purchase! So our daughter was unable to play and we had to throw away our worthless remaining tickets. This arbitrarily slimy policy cast a shadow over an otherwise very enjoyable Summer Fest.

This is “just a street fair” these days. It’s our local neighborhood and it is a lot of different types of things offered, but none of them very rich; IOW, wide and shallow. Personally, I really miss the master artisans that used to come to these shows.

Love the summer fest and love that it goes on into the evening. Wish there were some public seating near the music stages.

I’d like to see LARGE information boards (White boards or printed posters) at the south end of the festival and in the middle LISTING THAT DAY’s MUSICAL ACTS and times and SPEAKERS and TIMES on the Greenlife Stage. Having to check a phone or paper is silly. This is what signage does best. The Stage was simply too small. it felt like a tiny event. The neighborhood takeover by KEXP with the stage near the junction itself was better. The stage hosts were local guys and that’s cool but it made it seem like a little neighborhood thing. West Seattle is the city’s BIGGEST neighborhood. It’s time it grew up and acted like it.

There should be a festival art contest, something that makes people look and vote on easily. Other programming at the south end was always cool.. singer songwriters something. To have it be empty seemed like that end was an afterthought.

I’d be more likely to buy from an outdoor vendor if there was a place to sit and eat.

I enjoyed the variety of booths and food options and generally had a good experience with all of them, and found them very easy to navigate, without too many long lines. Plus the lines that were there generally went pretty fast. My family’s experience was pretty positive. I think the only thing that was a negative, and only slightly, is that it’s still kind of difficult navigating the kids’ area with small kids. All the rides and events are pretty open to all ages and sizes of kids and aren’t very well supervised, so finding things that small kids can do without concern of getting trampled by bigger kids can be tricky. I don’t know if it’s possible or desirable to split events for younger and older kids, but it might help with that problem.

We really need something for tweens and teens. My 12 year old daughter didn’t buy a weekend pass for the first time this year because the red ride (only one for older kids) wasn’t there

Putting Greenlife in the Park was not a good idea. It only allowed a few non-profits to be there and it was not advertised enough where we were. We saw a lot less folks then last year. There is not enough space there to have the animals and other displays that would draw the families to the site. The food booths blocked the site from view and folks sat on the grass to eat as there was no seating by the food trucks to eat. The park should be used as a place for children’s activities or vendors.

wish that there was more than 1 music stage!

lived in WS since 97 & never thought the fair was about the music. less would be fine with me. but who ever is playing should keep it PG until 9PM. there are too many families present before then.

I loved it. But my 11 year old was disappointed that the kid area was smaller this year than in the past.

I think there’s a lot of vendors we see at other Seattle fairs like U-District Street Fair and Fremont Solstice. I would like to see West Seattle specific vendors, maybe booths from Admiral/Morgan Junction businesses or White Center. This is an opportunity to showcase what we have on the peninsula. I live in High Point so I rarely know what’s available at Admiral for example.

My kids were disappointed that the gyroscope and another “big kid” ride was not there, and hope for more exciting rides next year.

Would like to see the vendor open a little later on Saturday or Friday and Saturday.

Maybe have a couple stages. Would be great to have some music or entertainment mid-block instead of just at the end.

Would love for the vendors to stay a little but past 6, maybe 8pm. Most of us work until 5-6 (ESP on Friday). Took some out of city guests at 6 for dinner and all the vendors to shop were closing up. Most food vendors were open but would like to see a cohesive time for everyone.

As always, most of the kids ride employees are not super friendly to kids. It bothers me every year.

Please provide more seating to eat at. And more places generally for people to sit.

Lots more food booths!! We felt everything was pretty standard and too heavy for a hot day. We opted to eat at a few different restaurants the days we went to the festival, which was fun and tasty. That said, we would have liked to see MORE tables/seating options (whenever possible) outside restaurants!

I don’t care for all the cheaply made clothing vendors selling sundresses, and mass-produced junky trinkets, there seemed to be a lot of fancy jewelry sellers this year, but I didn’t see anything that was remotely affordable. Happy to try out the new music, I had only heard of two of the bands on the line up, but found that several of the others were quite good. more shade in the beer garden, more craft beer s

More healthy food vendors. Or sandwich places. It was all greasy food or food that was not easy to walk around with. There are not many places to sit. election would be nice.

I would like to see a kid songs band for Friday around 5-7pm

Missed having multiple music venues.

I would like to see different bands. The few I saw were about to put me to sleep and the rest of the crowd obviously shared my opinion. We need more upbeat music, more music to get people excited and dancing, and more cover bands. The small acts on the street were WAY better than the bands on the main stage

I look forward to this weekend every year! I would add bathrooms to the beer garden, that is my only feedback.

Would like to have seen a larger kid area that was inviting for all ages – infants/toddlers – Bubble man was a huge success and it would be nice if something could be set up in an area next year where kids could enjoy and run around

When I have been to hoopfest in Spokane there is coordinated music playing all over the area through speakers. This give it a great feel when walking around. Just an idea if this would be possible.

Would be nice if Festival Hours were the same for all three days. Went on Sunday at 10AM only to find out it didn’t start until 11AM, luckily some businesses and booths were open anyway.

My dog was overwhelmed due to the crowds (as was I). It would be awesome to have an off leash area where they could play ball or something similar.

There needs to be some bleacher seats near the north stage. There is nowhere to sit unless you are spending money at a business that has outdoor seating.

more than one music stage. take a look at Vashon Strawberry Festival – they have multiple stages and one specifically tailored to youth musicians. I would love to see and hear more music like we used to! just one music stage is not enough.