Q & A with Diane Haugen, Community Connector

 

Q&A with Diane Haugen, former director of the Lake City Community Center and the Chamber of Commerce

Moving on to New Things

Diane Haugen, former Chamber and Community Center Director

Enjoy Lake City (ELC) recently visited Diane Haugen at a local restaurant to talk about a changing Lake City, the meaning of community, and the joy of Alpacas. The former Executive Director of the Lake City/North Seattle Chamber of Commerce and manager of the Lake City Community Center has moved on to new work in a different neighborhood, but says she feels she will always be part of the Lake City community.

ELC: How long did you work at the Chamber and the Community Center?

Ten years for the Chamber and five at the Community Center.

Do you miss Lake City?

I do miss the community.  I drive through it every day though, and I’m not too far away, just in Meadowbrook. I go to restaurants in Lake City all the time so I really feel like I haven’t left.

The Lake City Community Center is located at 12531 28th Ave NE next to the library.

ELC: What did you like best about the work? 

I’ve met a lot of people and I have a lot of connections. I open windows for people. I like to put people together if they can help each other. At Chamber after hours, I’d find out what people needed — a caregiver, a salesman, etc.- and make introductions face to face. That is the part of the work that feeds me. Continue reading “Q & A with Diane Haugen, Community Connector”

Q&A with Mohamed Abdel-Aziz, Owner of Gyro on Lake City

Q&A with Mohamed Abdel-Aziz, Owner of Gyro on Lake City

A Little Taste of Egypt in Lake City

Enjoy Lake City (ELC) recently visited Mohamed Abdel-Aziz at his Lake City Way restaurant to talk about delicious Mediterranean food, growing up in Egypt and life in Lake City. The restaurant recently moved a few doors down from its old location and now has a bigger seating area and a larger kitchen. And don’t miss our Mystery Diner’s “Rapid Restaurant Review” following the interview!

Mohamed Abdel-Aziz, Owner of Gyro on Lake City

ELC: How long have you been in the restaurant business?

It’s been 25 years since I came to the States from Egypt.

ELC: How did you decide to start your own restaurant?

That was the job I found months after I came to the States, first as a cook, then a lead cook, then a manager. But I found myself going nowhere and I just wanted to have my own thing and not have a boss anymore; to be my own boss.

ELC: Did you learn to cook when you came to the States or in Egypt?

I knew a little bit from back home in Egypt, but when I came here I learned from the different restaurants I worked in. Red Robin, Salty’s , Applebee’s. I managed Applebee’s so I learned everything about the business at Applebee’s and I trained everyone else. Meetings with the cooks about the new commercials, how to cook the new items, everything.

The restaurant has a fresh new look and a brightly painted façade (courtesy of LCFF).

Continue reading “Q&A with Mohamed Abdel-Aziz, Owner of Gyro on Lake City”

Q&A with Roy Ovenell, Owner of Roy A. Ovenell Insurance Agency, Inc.

Q&A with Roy Ovenell, Owner of Roy A. Ovenell Insurance Agency, Inc.

Covering Risks and Taking Risks

Enjoy Lake City (ELC) recently visited Roy Ovenell at his agency on Lake City Way to talk about the upcoming Car Show, the insurance business and a few fun adventures.

Roy Ovenell, Owner of Ovenell Insurance Agency

ELC: Can you talk a little about the Lake City Car Show and how you got involved in it?

This year, the Car Show is on Sunday, August 6 in the Bank of America parking lot during the Salmonfest street fair. We have a lot of regular attendees who have come for years. I helped out 10 to 15 years with a series of people who ran it. Eventually they all moved on and so I was kind of the last guy standing, so now I do the Car Show! I like to serve the community and this is one thing I do. Last year we had about 40 cars, but we could accommodate 70.

The Lake City Car Show has 40 plus cars to view.

We have room for all kinds of cars, vintage all the way up to the present – trucks, military vehicles, commercial type vehicles and special interests. So if somebody buys a brand new fancy car, bring it in!

ELC: Have there been any rare vehicles in the show?

One was a 1955 Mercedes 300 SL which was the first real sports car that used the gull wing. Very unique car, not very practical to drive, worth a fair amount. It was pretty cool to have that at the show. Continue reading “Q&A with Roy Ovenell, Owner of Roy A. Ovenell Insurance Agency, Inc.”

Q&A with Missy Young, Owner of Animal Talk and Missy’s Rescue

 

Q&A with Missy Young, Owner of Animal Talk and Missy’s Rescue

Walking and Talking with Lake City’s Own Animal Whisperer

Enjoy Lake City (ELC) recently met with Missy Young, owner of Animal Talk and Missy’s Rescue. Animal Talk is a full-line pet supply store and Missy’s Rescue is a no-kill shelter for all types of animals who are available for adoption and foster care.

It was a busy day and Missy was multi-tasking. We walked and talked through the store and shelter as Missy answered phones, advised pet owners on a number of dilemmas, waited on customers, completed an adoption, worked with volunteers and used her cat whispering skills to reassure a long haired cat named Bazinga who was definitely not happy about getting his nails trimmed.

All around us were cats and kittens, puppies, snakes, prairie dogs, parrots, chameleons and tarantulas, – whew! – bunnies, love birds, chipmunks, hamsters, possums, sugar gliders and many other furry and scaly friends waiting for homes.

MISSY YOUNG CALMS                                                                                                                        BAZINGA THE CAT AS                                                                                                                                 MINDY GROOMS HIS NAILS.

ELC: Why did you choose Lake City as your business location?

We opened for business on January 1, 1990 in the Roosevelt district. Several years ago, for a variety of reasons, I decided I wanted to close up and move to Alaska. When my customers and friends found out what I was thinking, they didn’t want me to go out of business and even helped me out with several months’ rent on a new place. I live in Bothell so I used to drive past here all the time and I saw the old Rimrock bar was up for sale. We’ve done a lot of work on the store and we’re still working on it.

Continue reading “Q&A with Missy Young, Owner of Animal Talk and Missy’s Rescue”

Q&A with Sharon Osborne, CEO of Children’s Home Society of WA

Q&A with Sharon Osborne, CEO of Children’s Home Society of WA:

Giving Hope, Gaining Hope and Helping Children Thrive

Enjoy Lake City (ELC) met with Sharon Osborne, CEO of Children’s Home Society of WA (CHSW) and the Children’s Home Society and Trust Foundation to discuss the work of the agency. CHSW, founded in 1896, is the state’s oldest and largest nonprofit dedicated to improving the lives of children and families.

SHARON OSBORNE
SHARON OSBORNE

ELC: Where did you grow up and how did you get into social service work?

(Sharon) I grew up in Louisville, Kentucky, in the city, not on a horse ranch. My grandfathers were a dairy farmer and a tobacco farmer. I grew up with horses and bourbon. My husband says ‘when I met Sharon I thought surely I’d get a few horses out of it, but I didn’t even get a mule!’

I was raised in a day when little girls didn’t think about what they wanted to do except as a wife, especially in the South. Even at an early age, I knew I would not end up in Kentucky. I had a wonderful, traditional childhood and I was happy, but I knew there was something else I was supposed to do in life. My life changed when I was about 14. There was tremendous rural poverty in Kentucky, Virginia, the Carolinas, and Appalachia. On a school project, we went to eastern Kentucky to help plant strawberries in the fields. I saw poverty in terms of shacks with no running water, but also saw an emotional, intellectual, psychological poverty I had never seen. I was so struck and touched by that. From that point forward, I knew this was my calling. Continue reading “Q&A with Sharon Osborne, CEO of Children’s Home Society of WA”