Next 50 Cultural Exchange Tours to Seattle Neighborhoods

Learn how our diverse communities contribute to the economy and culture of the Pacific Northwest on Next 50 Cultural Exchange Tours to four Seattle neighborhoods. The tours start and end at Seattle Center and include lunch and roundtrip transportation from 1st Ave N. along the West Plaza of KeyArena at Seattle Center, 10 a.m., Saturdays, Sept. 15, 22 and 29.

These special neighborhood visits reveal the foods, history and pace of life in Ballard, the Chinatown-International District, Martin Luther King Way and South Park. Each tour features an ethnic cuisine, neighborhood folklore presentation and look at that community’s economic drivers and innovations.

The tours are tailored to people who live in the region who are interested in finding out more about the business activities, celebrations, cultural institutions and great edibles offered at neighborhoods beyond their usual locale.

Tour goers may purchase tickets for the four tours at

South Park Neighborhood Cultural Exchange Tour, Sept. 15. The bus arrives at the South Park Community by 11 a.m. for the Fiestas Patrias parade, followed by a guided tour of South Park restaurants and businesses. The tour, focusing on the South Park immigrant communities and their economic and cultural impact in Seattle, finishes around 1 p.m. at Sea Mar Plaza, where there is a Community Fiesta with booths and activities for the entire family. Duration: 4 hours. Cost: $25.

Chinatown-International District Cultural Exchange Tour, Sept. 22. Everyone loves the countless dining options and bustling atmosphere in the Chinatown-International District, but if you haven't explored its history, you really don’t know it. Take this tour with Chinatown Discovery Tours and learn about the 100 year old neighborhood and its contributions to the city and region. Tickets include a multi-course lunch. Duration: 4 hours. Cost: $43.

Ballard Cultural Exchange Tour, Sept. 22. First stop is the Nordic Heritage Museum, with its Dream of America exhibit and some scrumptious Scandinavian foods. Tour takers will learn about the economic and cultural importance of Scandinavian immigration here. Participants will also visit Marvin’s Garden in the heart of the historic Ballard Avenue Landmark District. Group members may also enjoy some free time to explore the unique shops and restaurants in contemporary Ballard before returning to the Seattle Center by tour bus. Duration: 4 hours Cost: $21. (including museum admissions).

MLK Business Association Walking Tour, Sept. 29. MLK is located in the most diverse zip code population in the nation, where 90 languages are spoken. The high concentration of small, locally owned and operated businesses and service providers that thrive along MLK reflects the community’s rich cultural diversity and history. The tour includes stops at a Vietnamese Restaurant, jewelry store, Deo Valente and other ethnic shops. Cost: FREE. (includes food samples from some restaurants).

The Cultural Exchange Tours are part of The Next Fifty, celebrating the 50th anniversary of the 1962 Seattle World’s Fair and the legacy it left. For more information on the tours and other events at Seattle Center, visit To purchase tickets for the tours, go to

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