Celebrate Mukai -- Open House on October 23, 2016
Come celebrate Mukai!
On Sunday, October 23rd — drum roll, please — Friends of Mukai is hosting a community celebration at the Mukai House and Garden, on 107th south of Bank Road, from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m. From 2:00 to 3:00 p.m. we invite you to tour the historic house and garden. At 3:00, we’ll break out the refreshments, toast our successes, and ceremoniously remove the final part of the fence to open the property to all. You will be reacquainted with Mukai’s fascinating story and preview some of our exciting plans for the future.
Oh, and we’ll also share some fabulous news!
“October’s event is a community celebration and a giant thank you to all our supporters, strawberry fans, gardeners, farmers, history buffs, preservationists and friends of Mukai, who helped to rescue this beloved King County landmark,” said Friends of Mukai president Lynn Greiner. “Come celebrate!”
Since obtaining full legal rights to the property last April, Friends of Mukai has been working to ensure accountability, scheduled access and to develop an action plan for the years ahead.
Accountability: With help from state and county partners, Friends of Mukai has secured partial funding to restore the neglected house — and the organization takes its stewardship role seriously. The 12-member Mukai board has engaged a Vashon-based accounting firm to provide financial oversight. It is also working closely with professional cultural and preservation experts to guide the organization through the complex restoration process, which involves cataloguing Mukai’s historic treasures and complying with rigorous preservation standards.
Access: With October’s Celebration, Friends of Mukai will open the house on the four-acre property to visitors, and the community will be welcome to stroll through the historic garden.
The board is also finalizing a multi-year action plan aimed at reclaiming, restoring and maintaining the Mukai property. Earlier this year, King County 4 Culture awarded Friends of Mukai a Saving Landmarks grant to upgrade the house’s electrical and plumbing systems, replace windows, and repair the cracked concrete sidewalk, among other projects.
Part of this grant will also be used to map and plan the restoration of Kuni Mukai’s garden, called “historically significant” by local historian Bruce Haulman and Garden Committee chair Cindy Stockett, because it represents a “living synthesis of Japanese and American influences” — and because “it was created by a Japanese woman”— unusual for the times.
The board’s action plan also calls for finishing up work with Artifacts Consulting on a Historic Structures and Landscape Report. The document will become a blueprint for how Friends of Mukai plans to revitalize the site, and will help drive decisions about renovations and about future programming and fundraising needs. The final report is expected by year’s end.
In the meantime, Friends of Mukai is actively recruiting a network of volunteers to help with a variety of tasks including maintenance and preservation needs. If you’d like to volunteer, please email email@example.com. Or you can call board member Barb Schroeder at 463-3292 for more information.
Once again, please join Friends of Mukai for the Sunday afternoon October 23rd celebration at the Mukai house, 18017 107th Ave SW. Tour the property, raise a glass to all the progress that’s been made and toast the many people who’ve helped the organization get to this point.
Come Celebrate Mukai! If the forecast is rain, don’t forget your umbrellas. This is an outdoor celebration.