Ed Weiss, a lifelong Eastside resident, moved to Redmond over thirty years ago. He first began taking pictures as a child with a Brownie camera, then an Instamatic, and eventually graduating to a 35 mm model. Ed’s love for photography relay took off when he signed up for a photography class in high school. There he made friends with those of similar interest, especially one who shared a mutual love of railroads and aircraft. Together they went all over the area, catching old railroad buildings, pictures of trains, and the people whose career was to keep them running.
Ed didn’t stop with trains. By the 1980’s he realized the Eastside was rapidly changing and began to take pictures around the area. When he moved to Redmond, he appreciated how the town had a suburban element yet was able to retain much of its rural character and traditions. As accelerated growth and development came to Redmond in the 1990’s, he began to photograph what seemed like would soon be changing or disappearing. (Think of the changes to Willows Road that transformed from farms and a few houses in the 1980’s to Willows Run golf course and many offices and technology buildings today!) Ed especially enjoyed meeting early members of the Redmond Historical Society and going out on field trips with its founder, Naomi Hardy, to find historical artifacts and significant structures. The Society has preserved so much of the town and surrounding area’s history that otherwise would have been lost!
Here are some of Ed’s photographs of the building of Redmond’s Bridges:
One special area of interest were the hot air balloon flights up the Sammamish River valley that continue today. At one time there were a number of companies offering rides; now possibly only two. At one time they took off/landed at Marymoor Park, but most today seem to be at 60 Acres Park. There’s nothing that says “summer evening” better than seeing them floating by, then landing at the park.
Ed has posted some of his pictures of the area on Facebook pages, including “Remembering Old Redmond” and others. Thinking back, he wishes that he had the foresight to capture so much more of the area on film, but knows that there are many more snapshots out there in people’s albums yet to be discovered and shared. Much of Redmond’s landscape has changed. But you can still see hot air balloons over Sixty Acres Park. Somedays they even land or launch there. Ed has captured those images, and many others, for perpetuity. I’m glad that so many years ago he took up photography and has kept at it all these years. Redmond’s historical record is richer because he did.
Ed Weiss images of Thenos Dairy Farm on the Redmond-Woodinville Road circa 1993.
Bridges of Redmond Past Articles
The Bridges of Redmond
The Bridges of Redmond is a project by presbyterian pastor and artist Jason Dorsey they tells the stories of the Sammamish River that flows through Redmond and the people who love it. Read more here.
Read the story of Jason’s Redmond Roots here
Read the story of past Redmond mayor Christine Himes here
Read the story of past Redmond mayor Rosemarie Ives here
Read the story of river poet Ken Osborne here
Read the story of culture weaver and community builder Laura Lee Bennett here
Read the story of Salmon Caretaker Roger Urbaniak here
Read the story of sailplane hall-of-famer Bob Dodgson and Sixty Acres Park here.
Painting the Sammamish Rivertrail