CAPITOL HILL NEIGHBORHOOD
Saturday, October 18, 1997
Day and night, it's the 'strangest place
By ROBERT L. JAMIESON Jr.
SEATTLE POST-INTELLIGENCER REPORTER
At first glance, Capitol Hill is a giggly friend with spiked hair and a
pierced navel. She traces bronze dance steps on sidewalks and tempts you to buy
retro clothes from her shop windows.
Sometimes, her hand -- outstretched and dirty -- begs for loose change. She
loves bookstores, fine art and neat-looking brick buildings. She covets quiet
side streets with comfy cafes and antique shops.
At night, she swings to disco or salsa. In a blink, she will introduce you to
Ms. Fresca -- "The Latin Spitfire" -- whose high-stepping song is surpassed only
by her height: 6 feet, 6 inches -- in drag-queen heels.
In short, Capitol Hill will show secrets -- if you allow the time.
"This community is so alive," explains Everett Reagan, who lives in the
neighborhood and works for Seattle Central Community College on Broadway, one of
the city's most bustling streets.
runs day and night. It's very urban. There's such rich diversity. Broadway is
the closest thing we in Seattle have to New York's Upper West Side."
Indeed, the neighborhood has a reputation for being the hippest, prettiest
(well, in some places), grungiest and, to some folks, strangest place in town.
It has been featured in Hollywood's "Singles," where angst-ridden
twentysomethings fall in -- and out -- of movie love. Rap artist Sir Mix-A-Lot
immortalized its nightlife in his song about a "posse on Broadway." And who can
miss the male "nuns" who occasionally don habits and heavy mascara.
So it is not entirely a surprise that out-of-towners who seek an
interesting place to visit are sent here by Seattleites. One businessman calls
Broadway the "the living room" of Capitol Hill.
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