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Originally published February 4, 2014 at 8:50 PM | Page modified February 5, 2014 at 9:26 AM

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Not big on sports, ‘fan of the fans’ rallies crowd to fund pergola fix

The woman who led the crowdfunding to repair the Pioneer Square pergola that was damaged on Super Bowl night has never watched a Seahawks game and scarcely knows one single player’s name.


Seattle Times staff reporter

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Here is another example of how nice Seattle is.

The woman who on Monday night started a crowdfunding to repair the reported $25,000 in Super Bowl-celebration damage to the Pioneer Square pergola has never been to a Seahawks game, never watched them on TV, because she doesn’t have one, and knows the name of only one player on the team.

“That really attractive gentleman with the dreadlocks ... Sherman ... Sherman ... isn’t that his name?” says Amanda Gallagher Quinn, 36.

And Sherman’s first name is?

“Oh ... hmmm ... I don’t know.”

But in 21 hours after her gofundme site went live on Monday night, Amanda Gallagher Quinn raised $16,046 from 578 people. (Gofundme fees are 8 percent; in this case, around $1,280.)

“I have to admit, I’m not a sports fan. I guess I’m more of a fan of the fans. This is a strong community. I love Seattle,” says Quinn, a stay-at-home mom of Sadie, 20 months old.

“Part of the reason I started the fund was that I didn’t think the damage was malicious. I think things got broken out of excitement.”

Added to $10,000 that the 18 franchisees of the Western Washington Honda Dealers also promised to kick in, that put the funding over the top, and Quinn posted, “We are AT THE GOAL!!!”

And it may turn out it really wasn’t $25,000 that was needed, but considerably less.

Seattle Parks and Recreation says 20 to 28 glass panes were damaged when partyers walked on top of the historic structure built in 1909 out of 33 tons of ironwork to mark the entrance to underground public toilets.

Some panes were cracked, some broken. The agency says the cost of replacing them is estimated at $10,000 because the pergola is on the National Register of Historic Places, and all work has to meet exact historic specifications.

But it’s not clear whether the copper flashing that also was walked on will need to be replaced, says Seattle Parks. If not, the damage estimate would be lowered considerably.

All the money raised will be handled by the Seattle Parks Foundation, with anything left over after the pergola repairs used to spruce up the small parks around CenturyLink Field.

Quinn was raised in Portland and came to Seattle in her 20s.

She had a degree in sculpture from Portland State University and eventually found a job at the theater company ACT as a stage carpenter. That’s where she met her husband, Nicholas Farwell, the stage-operations supervisor.

“Seattle is very polite, very understated in its enthusiasm,” says Quinn.

She says Seattle isn’t about a few people climbing on top of the pergola, or some guys burning mattresses on Greek Row at the University of Washington.

For Quinn, Seattle is the hashtag, “#HowSeattleRiots,” which was used on a Twitter video showing Super Bowl partyers in Ballard not wanting to jaywalk and waiting for the crosswalk signal.

Her site has the hashtag, “#HowSeattleRiots Fixing the Pergola.”

Quinn says she was helped on the site by two women she met while working at ACT, Shana Pennington-Baird and Gretchen Drew.

“The pergola is a piece of art and architecture,” says Quinn, explaining why the women feel a kinship to it.

If something happens to such a landmark, she says, “We stick around and clean it up afterwards.”

OK, a few more Hawks questions, Amanda.

Who’s the quarterback?

“Hmmm ... ”

The coach?

“I don’t know that either.”

She and her husband and daughter will be at Wednesday’s parade, even if she won’t recognize the stars.

Says Quinn, “I just love the excitement. It’s contagious.”

Erik Lacitis: 206-464-2237 or elacitis@seattletimes.com Twitter @ErikLacitis



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