ONE PLEASURE OF EDITING this magazine is that its subjects never fail to teach me about Seattle. The lesson this month: Our physical landscape makes for a playground of Olympic proportions. Jill Kintner, for example, practically grew up on a bicycle, wheeling and careening around the neighborhood in her native Burien. This summer, if she qualifies, she’ll be heading for the Beijing Olympics to compete in the BMX, or bicycle motocross, event on a dirt course of sharp banked turns and straightaways buckled with bone-jarring bumps and jumps.
In effect, Kintner used the Northwest terrain as an early proving ground and, in the process, developed into a winning athlete. Seattle always ranks as one of the fittest cities in the nation, thanks to our geography of mountains, waterways, trails, and parks. Very few of us are competing for Olympic gold, but we can mine the city for active pleasures—as our art director did one day, when he was returning the company Prius to its parking spot. On the roof of the garage he spied a pristine regulation tennis court. The next sunny afternoon a handful of staffers convened the first meeting of the Seattle Met Tennis Club and slipped away from the office for a nonregulation—and chaotic—five-way contest on the roof. And to research our cover feature, one editor sampled five kinds of yoga, toned her waistline with hula-hooping, and shook her booty strip-tease-style while others played Ping-Pong and ultimate Frisbee and hiked the Arboretum. So, no matter where you fit on the fitness continuum, you can make friends and make the most of the city while making the most of your bod.
Elsewhere in this issue, an exploration of the Tulalip Tribes leads down another road to regional pleasures. You don’t have to travel far north or south on I-5 to spot the glittering signs touting the exits for tribal casinos. As Jim Gullo reports, behind the gaming tables and gambling machines near Marysville rise the Tulalips’ hopes and ambitions for a prosperous future and a reconnection to the language and culture that had been nearly lost over the last century.
So turn the page to begin your own voyage of discovery. And enjoy!