The City of Kirkland offers many exceptional activities, all of which allow for special encounters with our hometown that deepen our love for this place. Universally loved by residents and visitors alike is the range of outdoor dining Kirkland has to offer. Gathering with friends and family to enjoy Kirkland’s fine and casual multicultural food offerings in a range of settings along Kirkland’s wonderful streets, and in parks and urban centers is a veritable pastime for locals and visitors alike. The spectrum of al fresco options here is one rarely encountered elsewhere in the world, let alone the region. As we emerge from the COVID-19 global pandemic, options to keep us socially distant while allowing us to enjoy connective activities like dining together are more important than ever. Kirkland’s outdoor dining options combine vital support of local businesses with Kirkland’s unrivaled scenic environment. Add friends and family to the mix, and eating outdoors becomes a safe, supportive and community-building way to enjoy and appreciate the City we love.
One can enjoy Kirkland’s vast and varied cuisine while outdoors in an almost unlimited number of ways. Lunching or dining can find you gathering with family and friends one of the many sidewalk cafés or “parklets;” launching an excursion to picnic in one of the City’s more than 50[CH1] spectacular parks; people watching in a public space like an outdoor terrace in an urban center; or munching at water level from deck of a kayak. During the pandemic, the City created policies making it easy and free for restaurants to expand onto sidewalks, and into adjacent parking stalls in order to create space for social distancing and to address hardship caused by stay at home orders and capacity limits. These permits extend through the fall season until the end of December 2021, providing options for street dining even after summer. Expanded curbside pickup points helped restaurants pivot to accommodate no-contact pickup and delivery service, which is widely used even as the pandemic restrictions subside. Evenings on Park Lane runs until October and creates a pedestrian friendly zone in the downtown core, free from cars and peppered with outdoor dining options at the many cafés, restaurants, casual dining spots and bars. The City’s digital marketplace ShopLocalKirkland.com makes it easy and quick to locate excellent meal options for takeout or delivery to your favorite outdoor dining spot.
We are so fortunate to live in a City where there are so many options for recreating and gathering outdoors. The accessibility of al fresco options for dining has provided opportunities for togetherness even in times of social distancing, giving our residents and guests the chance to experience world class cuisine in every wonderful setting Kirkland has to offer. It has been marvelous to witness Kirkland’s parks and public spaces return to bustling activity during the summer, and to encounter residents and visitors loyally supporting our local restaurants and bars while enjoying with gusto Kirkland’s fabulous food.
I encourage everyone to visit ShopLocalKirkland.com to search among the incredible, multi-ethnic restaurants that enrich our City, enjoy a street-side table at one of our restaurant’s converted “parklets,” order takeout and people-watch in the plaza at Village at Totem Lake or Kirkland Urban, or grab and go and enjoy some nibbles aboard a kayak or electric boat.