Viretta Park

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Viretta Park (2007)
A Viretta Park bench serves as a de facto memorial to Kurt Cobain. (2007)

Viretta Park is a 1.8-acre (7,300 m2) park in the Denny-Blaine neighborhood of Seattle, Washington at the foot of E. John Street at 39th Avenue E., stretching down to Lake Washington Boulevard E. It was named by Charles L. Denny after his wife, Viretta Jackson Denny. It is located to the South of the former home of Kurt Cobain, where he died. Nirvana fans gather at the park on the anniversary of Cobain's death (April 5), and to a lesser extent on his birthday (Feb 20), to pay tribute to the musician.

The park's wooden benches, serving as the de facto memorial to Kurt Cobain, are covered with graffiti messages to the rock icon. There has been much speculation over the years on whether the name of the park should be changed to "Kurt's Park", due to the late rock icons large fan base.[citation needed]

Howard Schultz controversy[edit]

The first version of Friends of Viretta Park group was formed by area neighbors during a controversy with former neighbor and Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz, who formerly lived to the South. Schultz later moved to a new residence.

Viretta Park Repair[edit]

In 2010 a group known as Viretta Park Repair was formed, according to its website: "to repair and restore Seattle's Viretta Park and looks to create a memorial for Nirvana's singer/songwriter Kurt Cobain who died next door to the park". Its first work party was scheduled on Kurt Cobain's 44th birthday on Saturday, February 20, 2011. Volunteers came from all over the Western portion of the United States and SW Canada. The next series of scheduled work parties schedule for March 13, 2011 and April 5, 2011 were shut down by Seattle Parks and Recreation Superintendent Christopher Williams after a neighbor complained about memorial events and sculpture that do not exist, but which were actually scheduled for Aberdeen, Washington.

Acting Parks Chief Christopher Williams sided with the neighbors in blocking any attempt to have any memorial to Kurt Cobain in the park, despite recent work at Jimi Hendrix Park in Seattle and a memorial sculpture in Aberdeen, Washington which was supported by Aberdeen's Mayor.

Since then the Viretta park Repair has been given the green light to hold additional work parties. A 2nd work party was held on June 4, 2011 where volunteers removed invasive holly and blackberry bushes, laid burlap and covered the area with bark mulch.

A planting party, by Viretta Park Repair, will be held at the park on March 3, 2012, from 11am to 3pm.

External links[edit]

Further reading[edit]

Howard Schultz Controversy[edit]

Viretta Park Repair[edit]

Coordinates: 47°37′9.8″N 122°16′55.6″W / 47.619389°N 122.282111°W / 47.619389; -122.282111