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The Hambacher Family Loves the Market!

  • The Hambacher Family
  • |
  • Downtown Seattle

You can live in the Seattle area for a long time and yet still find a sense of discovery when it comes to Pike Place Market. For John, Nancy and Jake Hambacher, this discovery occurred when they moved to downtown Seattle 4 years ago and realized how close the Market was to their new surroundings.

“I thought to myself, well I’m downtown now, what can I do here?” Nancy reminisces, “I always loved the Market, so I did some research and got involved with the school group tours with Scott. One day, I hear about an interesting internship for my son involved with what I had heard was called the Market Foundation.”

Jake intervenes here, given that he’s just finished his second internship with the Market Foundation last summer. “That’s where we really first got exposed to the Foundation. I grew up in the Seattle area, but had no idea about all the social services here until I started the internship.”

With Jake serving as an intern and Nancy and John’s interest growing in the Market, they decided to make a donation via a ticket to Sunset Supper. What they didn’t realize was how much the event would hook them into years of involvement and generosity with the Market Foundation.

“What struck us was how The Market is a living community.” Remarks John, “This Market isn’t just a museum of Seattle’s history, it’s a living entity with deep and unique ties to Seattle history.”

The Hambachers are now regulars at Sunset Supper, having attended for the past 4 years and bringing tons of friends and colleagues from their condo complex – their building even plans to have their own table now at the event in the future! But more importantly, they leveraged the event to raise awareness of the Market Foundation’s message to their neighbors. “We want to build a wider audience for the Market’s mission” says Nancy, “We hate hearing that it’s just another Farmer’s Market – it’s just so much more.”

This advocacy has rubbed off on their son Jake, whose hard work went beyond the call of the typical intern. “I was around for the first Charm installation back for the Pike Up! Campaign. I patented the organization system for how to install the Charms on the MarketFront, and was part of the initial team advertising Charms at the Market.” Jake laughs as he looks back, “I sold a lot of Charms and gave a LOT of directions to people, so I know the Market really well now.” In fact, Jake, a recent graduate of the University of Arizona, is now a North America Sales Rep for ATAGO USA, Inc. He is putting his sales and people experiences to work as a career.

Nancy shares this skill in how to get around the Market. In fact, through Nancy’s extensive experience giving school tours and educating people on the Market’s history and social services, she was able to conduct research and help the Foundation on an upcoming behind-the-scenes Market digital tour. (If the map is ready, we can change this to present tense and perhaps encourage people to check out the tour?)

That’s not to mention how their big hearts extend to donations to the Market community. “We were one of the first to buy a Hoofprint when Pike Up! Was first announced. And, of course, we have a big family of Charms, I think it’s about…” Nancy pauses to start counting out all of the family members with Charms, “…definitely at least 5 or 6 of them!”

For the Hambachers, their involvement with the Market speaks to their commitment to the good health of the downtown community. “The Market creates a sense of equity. Bigger vendors help the smaller vendors, and you have the social services to help anyone around here in need. It’s a wonderful living system.”

“A lot of non-profits, you hear of how they help people in locations all over”, Jake adds, “But here in this Foundation, the nonprofit is right next to the people we help. It’s a put your money where your mouth is attitude.”

The Hambachers have certainly proven that their actions match their love for the Market, and we’re so grateful to have these neighbors and friends so closely aligned with us. Thanks to the Hambachers for setting an example of unity and generosity between the downtown and Pike Place Market communities!