Variety of Spice holds true to its name with a diverse library of gluten-free spice blends, sea salts, and other flavoring sundries, each made from local Washington ingredients that eschew MSG, preservatives, or artificial elements. Creative blends that include jalapeño chili, tomato horseradish, and garlic pepper grace meats with a flavorful coat or dive into sour cream to become a tempting dip for chips or entire faces.
With a total of 14 locations, sewing and quilting classes, and a cornucopia of handpicked sewing products, Quality Sewing & Vacuum offers needle wielders all the necessities for their projects. Experts helm free sessions that teach participants how to use their sewing machines to work toward reinventing an old skirt or craft an elegant canine wedding gown, while special events feature guest speakers who impart home decor, garment construction, quilting, and embroidery tips to audience members. Shoppers can peruse the cache of sewing machines from brands such as Singer, Pfaff, and Brother alongside accessories, embroidery designs, and vacuums that clean up rooms after testing out how easy it is to find a needle in a haystack.
Tastin’ n Racin’ attracts speed demons and foodies alike with a lineup of water races, food booths, and live music. Each year, Lake Sammamish becomes an aquatic racetrack as hydroplanes and speedboats zoom across the water's surface toward victory. On land, the festival hosts car shows, live music, and an arts and crafts market, where local artisans spin straw into stained-glass window trinkets. As the name implies, Tastin’ n Racin’ also always lines up an army of food booths and a beer garden stocked with pub grub and brews sourced locally and abroad.
Sidling up to the 14-foot, vintage timber tasting bar, one of Capri Cellars' wine stewards already has a bottle in hand. Encompassing tastes from a wide variety of wines, themed flights encourage visitors to get familiar with pinots, Washington reds, and vintages from around the globe. Guests follow sips with a host of paired snacks, such as marcona almonds, carefully curated cheese plates, and smoked salmon. The staff invites visitors to hang out at the bar or take a seat in one of the chic leather chairs to play spin the bottle on the floor.
Under red-and-white striped tents, handwritten signs beckon passersby over to wheeled carts filled with bundles of greens or smooth, symmetrical apples. At Newcastle Fruit & Produce’s open-air market, visitors survey a vast selection of seasonal, locally sourced fruit and vegetables that can include Bartlett pears, red-leaf lettuce, Yakima asparagus, and blueberries. Aside from assembling salad essentials, Newcastle’s team also stocks shrubs, perennials, and potted trees, and cuts pines for Christmas or anti-Arbor Day celebrations.