Posts in Community
Polite Neighbors - Outer Planet Brewing

We love our neighbors! For our newest blog segment, we will be taking a closer look at some of our favorite neighbors by chatting with them about their business.

Our first neighborhood feature is Gabriel Villenave of Outer Planet Brewing, located on 12th Avenue in between Howell and Denny. Outer Planet specializes in small-batch beers that are constantly rotating to keep fresh flavors on tap every day. “We want someone who comes in every two weeks to always have one new beer to try, every time. That’s kind of the guiding principle,” says Gabriel about their brewing philosophy.

Despite the constraints of operating a nano-brewery in a small taproom, Gabriel says he loves the culture of the small-batch brewing. “We can... do more experimental recipes, and try them out. And if it’s not popular, that’s fine because we just have a little bit of it. Bigger breweries can’t do that because if they brew a batch, it’s going to be ten barrels or more, so it’s going to be impossible to sell if the beer doesn’t turn out great”. The only downside to these small batches is not being able to go often enough to try everything!

In addition to the great rotation of beers on tap, patrons choose Outer Planet for the intimate community vibe. “We’re all from the neighborhood. I live a block and a half away and I have for a few years,” muses Gabriel. “Other neighborhoods have different things, but the set of things that we have on [Capitol] Hill is very unique to the Hill, it’s really a specific identity and that’s what I like about it… We’re happy to fit into that.”.

Outer Planet exemplifies many of our dearest values here at Polite Society, from community building and personal relationships, to quality beers about which the neighborhood can be proud. He says Capitol Hill “is great, everything is accessible from here, transportation is great. You can find everything within a half-mile radius that you can possibly want; tons of shops and restaurants and bars, and you can just walk to everything that you want. There’s a cultural thing that’s very unique to Capitol Hill. Especially around 12th avenue; you have 12th Avenue Arts... we even have a partnership with the Washington Ensemble Theatre that’s in residence there.” We love seeing a fellow community member flourishing in the tight-knit community on Capitol Hill. We are lucky to be able to call Outer Planet our neighbors and friends.

.Join us for a pint today and see how they are always aiming for the stars at Outer Planet Brewing! Don’t forget to say hi to Gabriel and the staff and thank them for their hard work and community building. See you at the bar!

P.S. We first started this project for our client The Danforth. A shortened version of this interview can be found on their socials.

CommunityYvonne Chien
Polite Society Picks - Local Non-Profits
Photo courtesy of PAWS Cat City

Photo courtesy of PAWS Cat City


Community has always been one of our main interests here at Polite Society. As the weather is getting better and we are all beginning to creep back outside for that much-needed sunshine, we thought we would share some of our favorite local organizations with you! (And with a big shout-out to all the ones not mentioned here; we love you too!!)

Chuck: I really love Country Doctor Community Health Clinics because of the things they do for the community. There are a lot of people that can't afford health insurance, but everyone deserves access to quality healthcare. They have been a part of the community for decades, especially the Carolyn Downs clinic. It is cool that it is the oldest continually-operated health clinic founded by the Black Panthers. 

Hans: I love the Zoo.  Yes it is true.
The animals seem happy.  Or at least not too hungry.
And there are many smart people working there.  With all kinds of fun facts they are happy to share.
Plus they have a carousel too.  I love you Woodland Park Zoo.

Desmond: One of my favorites is 206 Zulu. They are based out of Washington Hall in the Central District. They help educate and connect people through a common thread of Hip-Hop culture. They not only produce great events but have programs to help youth learn music, entrepreneurship, and life skills.

Sarah: I really love Northwest Folklife and the work they do to keep traditional forms of dance, music and art alive. Seattle is such a melting pot of different cultures, backgrounds and nationalities and we all have our own traditions we grew up with. From Korean Drum performances to Bavarian beer garden bands to Romanian dance troupes, at Folklife we can celebrate it all. Folklife reminds us that it is the presence of all these different cultures that makes our community stronger, not weaker.

Serene: Mine is PAWS! Growing up in Seattle, my family adopted our two cats from PAWS over the years and they are the absolute best! I really appreciate the care and compassion that PAWS staff put toward the animals they care for. Plus they have kitten and cat rooms you can go into when you're looking to adopt to play with all the animals - fricking adorable!

Yvonne Chan: A great local nonprofit is Northwest Immigration Rights Project. They provide legal services to immigrants and advocate for policies that provide justice and equity for everyone, no matter where they were born. What they do is more important than ever in today's political climate.

Yvonne Chien: One of my favorite Seattle nonprofits is the Japanese Cultural Community Center of Washington! It's a great organization that celebrates Japanese culture through classes and events that bring the community together. I interned there for a couple months, and it was amazing seeing the amount of historical artifacts and personal stories they have collected and preserved from multiple generations of Japanese people living in Seattle, including those who were put in camps during WWII.

Joey: How can you go wrong with Goodwill? There seems to be a hidden gem or two in every store, and they also provide jobs for thousands of mentally disabled people across the country.

Mathieu: I would have to say my favorite is Outdoors for All. I admire their mission of bringing outdoor accessibility and recreation opportunities to adults who would otherwise be unable to participate in the great outdoor activities Seattle is so lucky to have. As an older brother to someone with Down Syndrome, I just love seeing Outdoors for All providing fun and healthy lifestyle options to adults with disabilities - everyone should have access to community and fresh air!

Snow Day in Denny Park

When the days get colder, we all hope for the magic of a Snow Day. A chance to escape the drudgery of your day and go out and play. But when days get colder, the nights get longer and that is when the magic truly happens. Is there anything more magical than a Snow Day night? For five weeks this winter, we took over Denny Park, Seattle’s oldest park, to create a magical, immersive winter light installation. In South Lake Union, every day was Snow Day.

In the fall of 2018, Friends of Denny Park & Amazon came to us with a vision of creating a family-friendly, interactive event that would drive people to South Lake Union after hours and give local businesses a boost during the holidays. Even though it doesn’t snow often in Seattle, everyone loves the excitement of a Snow Day, so we decided to recreate this feeling with an immersive lighting display in Seattle’s oldest park.

We strung over 30,000 lights throughout the park, turning it into a winter wonderland. We kicked off the festivities with a Grand Opening Party with a holiday market, beer garden, food trucks, live music, stilt walkers and more. KEXP’s DJ Troy Nelson curated a Snow Day playlist for the festivities, an ice sculptor carved a custom Snow Day installation, and attendees could get their picture taken inside a giant Snow Globe . Event goers were able to experience fun, winter activities all while taking in the immersive scene that lit up Denny Park. After the opening party, the lights remained up for 5 weeks.

Over the course of the 5 weeks, between 20,000 to 50,000 people visited Denny Park to see the lights. The holiday season was an especially wonderful time to activate the park. Providing joy to the neighborhood as well as drawing in more people to this historic park in Seattle was extremely rewarding and exciting.

With this much success and support in the first year of Snow Day, we are very excited to build on the event for next year, and all the years to come all while engaging more and more of the local community!

Check out our Snow Day Video!