A double whammy in this morning's Seattle Times: Budget cuts are all but certain to force the closure of two of my family's favorite local destinations.
First: The Woodland Park Zoo is planning to shutter its Nocturnal House, home to bats, sloths, armadillos, and my beloved slow loris. This is one of the best places to take kids on a day like today - a day of miserable constant drizzle following 7 other days of miserable constant drizzle. The zoo is trying to slash $800,000 out of its budget and sez keeping the Nocturnal House running is very expensive. Some of the animals will stay at the zoo; others will go to other zoos.
<sigh> But even worse news for yours truly is word that the state's Department of Natural Resources is looking at closing several local trails, including Mt. Si and Little Si. Now, maybe you're not a hiker, or maybe you don't hike these moderate-to-difficult trails. But I am telling you these trails are absolutely gorgeous, a local treasure, and you can't park anywhere near the trailheads on summer weekends, because they are so beloved and well-used. Hiking Si is how you know you're in reasonable mom-shape. Hiking Little Si is how you know your kids are true "Northwest outdoorsy" kids. Gazing at that peak is part of what makes running errands in Issaquah strip malls bearable.
If the trails get the axe in Governor Gregoire's budget, they'll close as soon as March.
Lace up those boots and check them out, before it's too late. And tell slow loris I love her.