Post Alley And The Seattle Gum Wall

The Seattle Gum Wall is one of those quirks that starts off small and, before you know it, blows up into a huge thing and spreads like wildfire.

Loctated in Post Alley, underneath Pike Place Market, it is the world’s second most unhygienic tourist attraction.

Hmmm, somehow this fact does not surprise me. Just take a look at this picture…

Do you want burst that bubble of thought that describes this as a piece of art? Or do you like its quirkiness?

Either way, although opinion is divided, it certainly attracts a lot of attention.

I think this was probably the point. So love it or hate it, the gum wall is likely to be sticking around for a long time.

If you have an inquiring mind, you might wish to know what attraction got awarded the number one spot for being the world’s germiest attraction.

This oh so complimentary top spot went to the Blarney Stone near Cork, Ireland, which is kissed by more than 400,000 people a year.

According to local legend, kissing this stone can give you the gift of the gab (and a whole lot more apparently).

But back to the Seattle Gum Wall…

My view: I liked it.

I thought it was colourful and interesting.

However, people are not just sticking to one wall when they dispose of their gum. It has spread to a significant part of the alley.

Amongst the blobs were words and questions.

Will you go to prom with me?

This cheesy proposal was more disgusting to me than the gum.

I asked people on Facebook whether they thought the Seattle Gum Wall was gross or great. Here are some of the comments:

The gum wall is located next to the box office for the Market Theater.

Where did the gum wall come from?

The tradition began in 1993 when people started to stick coins to the wall using blobs of chewing gum, while they were waiting in line for tickets.

Theatre staff would remove the gum time and time again, but eventually gave up and let it stick.

The coins quickly disappeared from the equation and the sticky trend was well and truly established.

Besides the gum, there is a lot of non-sticky art to see…

Post Alley has two levels. To get to the gum wall you have to walk down a ramp from the Pike Place Market.

Or, if you want to conserve energy, this seemed to be a popular way of getting down there…

The ground-level Post Alley is much more refined and is filled with various pubs and eateries.

How about you? Do you think the Seattle Gum Wall is gross or great?



  1. June 26, 2012 / 19:33

    I was going to ask if you contributed, but you answered that question with your comment above. I really liked the wording of this post. Nice work :)
    Michelle Blake recently posted..It’s all part of the experienceMy Profile

    • June 27, 2012 / 17:46

      Thank you, think I overdid it a wee bit haha :-) I was in a weird mood when I wrote this.

  2. June 28, 2012 / 11:18

    Wow, I’ve never heard of this wall before but I’d love to visit it. Ye, it is kind of gross but it’s pretty amazing at the same time.

    • June 29, 2012 / 03:59

      I loved it because it was so random and colourful. Without the gum, it would just have been a dark, dingy alleyway, so it brightened the area up. I think there’s one like it somewhere in California as well.

  3. August 21, 2012 / 21:20

    I love the gum wall…

    Yes, it’s gross. And in gross there is beauty. I see the beauty. I see the art. The gum wall totally fits the Seattle culture of grunge and art.

    You can see my stunning image of the gum wall at Thanks for looking.