News Blog for Seattle's University District Neighborhood


Huge rummage sale turns 50 years old this weekend

April 17th, 2012 by master

Anyone would be hard-pressed to think of a neighborhood tradition that’s half a century old (outside the UW campus, of course). But this week, the members of the University Congregational UCC are putting the finishing touches on the 50th annual Superfluity Sale. Budget conscious shoppers will find kitchen items, decorations, bedding, small furniture, lamps, plants and much more.

The sale started as a white elephant gift exchange back in March 1962. It has since raised more than $450,000 dollars for charities that support vulnerable children, youth and women.

You can check it out at 4515 16th Ave. N.E. Here’s the schedule:

2012 Superfluity Sale
April 19th 7-9 pm
April 20th 9:30 am – 6 pm
April 21st 9:30am-1pm

Kitchen and Housewares sold at Superfluity 2011

Books sold at Superfluity 2011

Plants sold at Superfluity 2011

Collectibles and decor accents sold at Superfluity 2011

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Nickelsville update

September 6th, 2010 by master

Almost one month after Nickelsville moved back into the U-District, a representative of the University Congregational United Church of Christ tells us everything is going smoothly.  The tent city will stay two more months in the church’s parking lot at NE 45th Street and 15th Ave NE.

Church officials says Nickelsville residents are in need of many things, especially socks and underwear for both men and women.  Here’s a list of other items that can help:

  • Camp stoves
  • Tents
  • Batteries
  • Paper plates
  • Plastic spoons and forks
  • Ice
  • Canned goods
  • Ready to eat meals
  • Monetary donations

Items can be brought to the church office or directly to Nickelsville at the entrance on the alley behind the church.

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Nickelsville information meeting set for tonight

August 17th, 2010 by master

Sorry for the late notice, but this was just announced.  A meeting will be held tonight to provide the community with more information about the Nickelsville homeless tent camp.  60 members of Nickelsville moved back into the U-District last weekend.  The church that’s hosting the group, University Congregational United Church of Christ, will hold the meeting tonight at 7pm in their sanctuary (intersection of NE 45th Street and 15th Ave NE).

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Moving day: Nickelsville arrives in U-District

August 14th, 2010 by master

90 degrees.  Asphalt as your floor.  Honey Buckets as your only bathroom.  Sound comfortable?

“Dude, we’re homeless.  Anywhere would be great,” said Nickelsville resident James who doubles as official moving boss and chief of security.

With the sun beating down on them, 60 members of the Nickelsville homeless tent camp moved back into the U-District today.  After packing up their things this morning in Skyway, they made the short trip north to the familiar parking lot of the  University Congregational United Church of Christ at NE 45th Street and 15th Ave NE.  Some members of the roving group remember their time here just two years ago and are happy to be back.

“The community for the most part has been real supportive,” said James.

While the church is welcoming Nickelsville back to the U-District, others in the community are already raising concerns.  Managers at the nearby Washington Square apartments tell us they’d prefer the group stay away.  They called the last experience with the tent city “a bit of a disaster” with some of the homeless seeking out places to use the bathroom.  But church officials say they have a plan to make sure things are better this time around with access to showers, food, and hygiene products.  Nickelsville residents tell us they also self-police their tent city and have a set of rules they abide by including no booze and no drugs.

Nickelsville will stay at this location for up to three months.  There’s no decision yet on where the group will head next, although they’re hoping for a permanent location.

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Nickelsville returns to U-District

August 9th, 2010 by master

Almost two years after they left, residents of the roving homeless tent camp dubbed “Nickelsville” are returning to the U-District.  They’ll once again set up camp in the parking lot of the University Congregational United Church of Christ located at NE 45th Street and 15th Ave NE.  The tent city is due to arrive from Skyway this Saturday (8/14) and stay up to three months.

One resident of the nearby Washington Square apartments, where many UW students live, told us she didn’t have any concerns about the group moving in.  But managers of the building say they did experience some problems the last time Nickelsville was here, including bathroom issues.

“It was a bit of a disaster,” one person in the management office said.

Nickelsville camp during their 2008 stay in Magnolia.

The church tells us they already have a leadership team in place to support for the tent encampment including access to showers, food, and hygiene products.

“…we know that we will benefit far more from our connections with the Nickelsville community members than they do from us. Our church was energized, our friendships expanded, our learning about homelessness  escalated, and our readiness to advocate for adequate housing for all was strengthened immeasurably,”  church community liaison Nathalie Gehrke told us via email about their last experience with Nickelsville.

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