Bothell was featured in the top 10 finalists of Reader’s Digest’s “The Nicest Places in America” of 2018.
The magazine just finished its second annual search for the United States’ nicest place. Bothell was one of the finalists but lost out to a Falafel House in Tennessee. The city was nominated for its “Cup of Kindness Day,” which was established earlier this year in honor of Bothell local, Will Tinkham, who has special needs.
“An unlikely relationship in this Seattle suburb has sparked a movement that is spreading kindness all over town,” the Reader’s Digest article reads.
Every May 10 in Bothell honors a movement started by local Beca Nistrian, owner of Beca’s Brew. She received media coverage in 2017 as she struck up a friendship with Tinkham, who enjoyed visiting the coffee stand.
Tinkham is “an exceptional conversationalist with a kind, joyous soul,” according to the city’s proclamation of “Cup of Kindness Day.” May 10 is Tinkham’s birthday and Nistrian started the movement in an attempt to help him feel welcome within the community and “threw an epic party that drew strangers together to celebrate [his] birthday.”
Bothell “recognizes the value of inclusive kindness among its community members,” according to its proclamation.
The day is now celebrated throughout the area by multiple organizations such as City Hill Church in Kenmore, which put on the event for single moms.
Encouraged by the story of Beca’s Brew, the church joined with other groups to give 20 women manicures, massages, dinner, a bouquet of flowers and oil change vouchers from Jiffy Lube and Grease Monkey. More than 40 of their kids got to jump for free at Elevated Sportz.
Nistrian was there too, serving the moms that evening.
While Nistrian and Tinkham are the centerpiece of the nomination, Reader’s Digest highlighted several other ways Bothell natives make the city one of the nicest places in the country.
“You don’t have to wait a year to see folks being nice in Bothell,” the editors wrote. “Another resident, Jason Dunbar, converted an RV into a mobile shower for the homeless.”
Bothell was nominated by local Mary Leah-Moore, who celebrated her 50th birthday by handing out stockings full of toiletries to those who used the mobile shower.
The Reader’s Digest article received an outpouring of praise from Bothell locals, with 32 comments on Facebook agreeing that Bothell is one of the nicest places to live.
This story originally appeared in the Bothell-Kenmore Reporter, a sibling paper of The Daily Herald.