Public streetery offers more seating to Walla Walla patrons

Local businesses can serve more customers with Plaza on First Ave.

A public, outdoor eatery is now located on First Ave. in Walla Walla complete with a place to sit, umbrellas for shade and sanitation stations to keep everyone safe.

A community member and local business owner brought the idea to the city shortly after Walla Walla County was shutdown due to the COVID-19 Pandemic. In late May the city council approved the idea to add a public streetery to the downtown area. Originally the city hoped to make the addition by early June but things finally came to fruition Friday.

Andy Coleman is the Walla Walla Parks and Recreations Department Director and said the plaza project has been one of funnest he has been involved with in his over 20 years with the city.

“With over 20 staff working together to make this happen on a very short time frame, trying to get this outdoor plaza ready to go.”

The staff started working at 6 am on Friday to set up the tables, chairs and umbrellas on First Ave. between Main Street and Alder Street. Planters are placed at each end of the plaza to serve as traffic barriers. Multiple strands of lights are suspended above the tables holding 900 light bulbs. A local architect designed the plaza and city staff members from multiple departments helped make the streetery happen. By 10 am on Friday the plaza had multiple people coming together to dine with local restaurants. Yamas Greek Eatery is open for indoor dining, has two patio tables and is also serving people in the public space.

“We have nice community tables people just get food from wherever and come and enjoy in our beautiful plaza,” Demetri Sidiropoulos of Yamas Greek Eatery said. “I would call it an attraction – it gives a little European feeling to the whole city.”

Sidiropoulos thanked the city of Walla Walla for setting up the plaza so more people could come downtown to support businesses.