Patrick Robinson
Easy Street Records was named as Small Business of the Year by King County Executive Dow Constantine at a presentation breakfast in Bellevue on Oct. 10.

Easy Street Records named as 2012 Small Business of the year by King County Exec.

Owner Matt Vaughn calls the honor 'Humbling'

Easy Street Records, the record store, cafe, and frequent performance space in the West Seattle Junction (another location is on Mercer in Queen Anne) was awarded the title of Small Business of the Year by King County Executive Dow Constantine at a breakfast ceremony conducted at Meydenbauer Center in Bellevue.

Constantine (who lives in West Seattle and is often seen at Easy Street) – in partnership with award sponsors KeyBank, Microsoft Corporation, the Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County, enterpriseSeattle, and the Small Business Partners for Prosperity – named 21 finalists in seven categories for the second annual King County Executive’s Small Business Awards.

"It's humbling," said Easy Street owner Matt Vaughn, "You'd think Dow had rigged this thing but apparently he wasn't able to vote on it." Vaughn holds that small business is fundmentally important. "If you want to know how important it is to the local economy just look no further than West Seattle. The other junction merchants and customers give me inspiration on a daily basis. Without the support of the community my heart and soul wouldn't be into it."

He was in attendance with his wife whom he joked was, "kind of torn on it because she really likes Trophy Cupcakes (another nominee)."

He was gracious in accepting the award following a 2 minute montage video look at the history of the company, in a ceremony hosted by John Curley. "For my family and staff at West Seattle and Queen Anne this is certainly a huge honor. And to have Dow presenting the award made it even more special because he's been a lifelong supporter of West Seattle and since that store began in the late 80's we've known him as a customer. This is kind of like the Oscars for small business. I felt like Sally Field...'They like me, they really like me!'"

Easy Street's Queen Anne location just hosted Seattle born rising star rapper Macklemore in a first for the company, with a rooftop concert.The Heist, Macklemore's debut full album, reached #1 on iTunes within hours of being released on October 9th, 2012.

130 nominations were received from 42 Award Partners – chambers of commerce, cities and business organizations across the county.

The awards program recognizes small businesses throughout King County that best demonstrate innovation and excellence.

Vaughn acknowledged that he's made mistakes along the way but said, "I try to look at them as opportunities."

Coming up for the West Seattle location within the next 12 months is a change to the familiar facade and it's neon lettering. "Too many trucks have hit it," Vaughn said so it will be changed to something that will still look authentic to the vintage design of the store but be less likely to get damaged. "Other than that I'm just planning to fix some water leaks and attend to other maintenance around here."

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