I used to live mere feet from this park, and many of my favorite childhood memories are wrapped up in its shrubbery. I perfected my tree climbing skills there, picked blackberries off it’s slopes and roared with laughter the 4th of July my daredevil uncle caught it’s grassy bank on fire.
Though spread across only 5 acres, Grand Ave Park is long & narrow and beautifully maintained, so it gives the illusion of being much bigger than it truly is. The city of Everett acquired the land in 1906; it was sold to the city by the Everett Improvement Company for the grand total of $1. Many stately houses line the east side of the park, including the home of Henry M. Jackson, a US congressman and senator. His house had been built by another Everett notable, William C. Butler, a conservative Republican banker who had had great influence over Everett’s early development. When Mr. Jackson, a Democrat, purchased the house in 1967, he was said to have savored the irony of owning the house of the tight-fisted ‘ol Republican not only because of their political differences but also because he had delivered newspapers to that same house as a child.
Grand Ave Park is probably not the place you’ll want to visit for a toddler playdate or a power jog. There’s no playground or plastic jungle gym or batting cages. Just a long expanse of beautiful views, big trees and green grass. When I walk along its promeade, looking down on the twinkling lights below, I can nearly imagine myself eleven again, running ahead, wild & free. It’s a mirage that I’m always grateful for.
Grand Avenue Park
1800 Grand Ave Everett, WA 98201