Budinich gift deeds Riverside Memorial to our historical society!

July 23rd, 2017

Gathered on May 31, 2017, to celebrate the transfer of the Riverside Memorial to the Southwest Seattle Historical Society are (from left) Riverside natives Mike Budinich, Frank Zuvela and Jerry Vandenberg; Karen Sisson, board president; Peder Nelson, vice-president; Marcy Johnsen and Judy Bentley, former presidents; Nancy Sorensen and Kerry Korsgaard, trustees; and Flora Belle Key, Tom Rasmussen and Ken Workman, Advisory Council members.


Triangle dedicated to residents of Croatian fishing community
becomes local heritage organization’s second piece of property

Historic Riverside Walking Tour set Saturday morning, Aug. 5


Thanks to a generous gift by the family of Mike Budinich, the Riverside Memorial triangle that was dedicated in 2012 is now the property of our historical society.

Initial documents for the property transfer were signed May 31, 2017, and final documents were signed July 19, 2017. The Riverside Memorial is located at 3810 17th Ave. S.W., just off West Marginal Way and almost directly beneath the West Seattle Bridge.

The innovative triangle – a total of 1,010 square feet appraised at $21,200 – features bricks denoting the resident families, largely Croatian, of this historic neighborhood, with the bricks arranged in the configuration of the community’s hillside street grid.

At the Chelan Café, Mike Budinich signs the transfer agreement for the Riverside Memorial, flanked by his partner Michelle Kelly (left) and representatives of the Southwest Seattle Historical Society, Karen Sisson, board president, and Ken Workman, Advisory Council member.

Five years ago, the families who trace their roots to the Riverside neighborhood created and dedicated the memorial, which also includes an interpretive monument and metal fishing-boat artwork. In addition, its eastern parking strip features a small garden and bench.

Our historical society co-sponsored the opening ceremony, “Coming Home to Riverside,” on Jan. 28, 2012, and since then has sponsored an annual walking tour centered on the memorial and conducted by Riverside native Frank Zuvela. He will lead this year’s walking tour at 10 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 5, 2017 (donation of $5).

The Budinich family, which owned the property, deeded the triangle to the historical society on two conditions, (1) that the triangle be preserved and not be built upon without the family’s permission and (2) that the historical society maintain it periodically.

Karen Sisson, board president for the historical society, says the property fits the organization’s mission “to promote local heritage through education, preservation and advocacy” and allows the historical society to expand its presence within its service area of the Duwamish Peninsula. The site also is adjacent to early settlements of the Duwamish Tribe.

The historical society’s other property is at 3003 61st Ave. S.W., the site of the “Birthplace of Seattle” Log House Museum on Alki, acquired in the mid-1990s.

The historical society plans its first work party to freshen the Riverside Memorial for 6-8 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 3, 2017, two days prior to the Aug. 5 tour. The public is invited to help weed and do other cleanup at the site.