Salmon Days offers much more fare than fish

October 1, 2011

NEW — 6 a.m. Oct. 1, 2011

Despite the name, the Salmon Days Festival is about a lot more than fish. (Though the Kiwanis Club of Issaquah prepares coho aplenty at a barbecue fundraiser.)

Find other festival treats throughout Salmon Days and at Foods of the World near the historic Issaquah Train Depot, 50 Rainier Blvd. N. Think barbecued beef, gyros Philly-style cheese steaks, tacos and Thai noodles, plus corndogs and funnel cakes aplenty.

Stop by Gibson Park, along Newport Way Southwest across from the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery, for the Kiwanis Salmon Barbecue.

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Hatchery salmon make ultimate sacrifice for species’ survival

October 1, 2011

Concrete troughs hold young hatchery-bred salmon at the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery. Contributed

NEW — 6 a.m. Oct. 1, 2011

There are steps in the process that may not be pretty, but it’s all aimed at aiding in the survival of Pacific salmon.

In hopes of eventually releasing millions of young salmon back into local waters, workers and volunteers at the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery harvest nearly 2,000 mature chinook and coho salmon annually. They also take in kokanee from Lake Sammamish.

The chinook and coho check into the hatchery via Issaquah Creek. This year, the first fish arrived Aug. 23. Those tabbed to help with ushering in a new generation don’t check out.

Some people are surprised to learn mature salmon are killed for artificial breeding purposes, admitted Darin Combs, hatchery manager. Visitors can watch the fish being collected and processed. Combs said somewhat surprisingly to him, adults have the strongest negative reactions. Children aren’t as offended, sometimes asking to see the fish remains. The important thing to remember, Combs said, is that all salmon — males and females — die after spawning.

The first salmon to reach the hatchery are chinooks. Biologically driven to go upstream to spawn, the fish only have one way to go once they reach the facility, Combs said, and that is up the hatchery fish ladder and into holding ponds. The first harvest of male and female chinooks is completed in late September.

“You have to get your hands on the fish,” Combs said. “So you get in the water in your waders and you grab the fish by the tail one at a time.”

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Entertainment options abound on Salmon Days stages

October 1, 2011

NEW — 6 a.m. Oct. 1, 2011

From blues to bluegrass, folk to funk, and rock to R&B, musicians cover a broad spectrum on Salmon Days Festival stages.

The action is spread across five stages situated throughout the festival grounds.

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Salmon Days Festival spawns street closures

September 27, 2011

Motorists should prepare to brake for salmon Oct. 1-2 as more than 100,000 people migrate to Issaquah for the Salmon Days Festival.

The festival and the opening Grande Parade spawn road closures on streets in the historic downtown and the business district. Motorists should prepare for daylong closures on both festival days.

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Northwest Burn Foundation to raise funds at Salmon Days

September 27, 2011

Visitors to the Salmon Days Festival can help local burn victims through the Northwest Burn Foundation’s annual fundraising event, Give Burns the Boot.

Manning first aid stations set up around the festival site, Eastside Fire & Rescue volunteers will pass a boot to raise money for burn survivors.

“We not only collect money for the Northwest Burn Foundation, but we also provide burn prevention information to the public,” said EFR volunteer firefighter Anita Sandall, this year’s Burn Foundation coordinator for local firefighters.

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Kiwanis funds community aid through Salmon Days dinners

September 27, 2011

Key and Builders club members were among those helping out at last year’s Kiwanis Salmon Days booth. Contributed

Thanks to the great weather during last year’s celebration, the Kiwanis Club of Issaquah sold 2,500 pounds of salmon in the course of the city’s annual Salmon Days Festival event.

The community service club even ran out at about 3 p.m. the second day of the festival, according to incoming Kiwanis President Glenn Hall, who is running the group’s booth at this year’s Salmon Days.

Hall said all that fish translates to volunteers having served up about 2,200 dinners at the 2010 Kiwanis booth. Complete with coleslaw and a drink, over the years, the dinners have helped the Kiwanis raise an average of about $17,000 annually.

Hall said he believes the local Kiwanis have offered dinners every year since the inception of Salmon Days. Kiwanis organizers hope the weather this year again will be of the sunny, dry variety and they have upped their usual Salmon Day fish order to 2,500 pounds.

In past years, the Kiwanis ordered 2,000 pounds of fish and then bought more on Saturday depending on sales. The fish is grilled over alder.

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Salmon Days Ohfishal Festival Program 2011

September 26, 2011

Open publication – Free publishingMore festival

Sports kick off Salmon Days Festival celebration

September 20, 2011

If walking with a GPS unit is your idea of exercise or if you are one of those who people who prefers a brisk 10K run, the Salmon Days Festival has something for all types of the sporting crowd this year.

The Ohfishal Salmon Days Sporting Weekend features geo-teaming and the Issaquah Rotary Run.

Geoteaming, a unique sport, is Sept. 24. The annual Issaquah Rotary Run, for serious runners as well as joggers, is Oct. 2.

Both events have their special features.

Geoteaming is a fun, interactive and high-tech scavenger hunt using hand-held GPS units to navigate to hidden treasures in and around Issaquah. Individuals or teams can participate in the event.

Each found cache earns a team or individual many valuable points toward a final score. All equipment is provided. Participants should have appropriate-weather clothes and walking shoes. The event begins and finishes at Rogue’s Issaquah Brewhouse, 35 W. Sunset Way.

There are two sessions of geo-teaming each day. The first session runs from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Sept. 24. Teams must sign in by 9:30 a.m. Sept. 24. The second session runs from 1-3 p.m., and teams must sign in by noon.

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Salmon Days volunteer sign-up party is Sept. 7

September 6, 2011

Issaquah Salmon Days Festival organizers are having their annual volunteer sign-up party from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Sept. 7 at Pickering Barn, 1730 10th Ave. N.W.

During the event, those willing to help with Issaquah’s yearly Salmon Days party can sign up to take on any one or more of several tasks, from helping with a Salmon Day booth to being a “refuse ranger” to manning a shuttle bus.

This year’s Salmon Days is from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Oct. 1 and 2.

In general, volunteers work shifts of three to four hours. Salmon Days welcomes volunteers of all ages, though Pauline Middlehurst, sponsorship and promotions manager for the festival, said those younger than 14 should be accompanied by a parent.

Learn more or obtain a sign-up sheet at, or call the Salmon Days office at 392-0661.

Salmon Days Festival volunteer sign-up event is Sept. 7

August 30, 2011

Issaquah Salmon Days Festival organizers are having their annual volunteer sign-up party from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Sept. 7 at Pickering Barn, 1730 10th Ave. N.W.

During the event, those willing to help with Issaquah’s yearly Salmon Days festival can sign up to take on any one or more of several tasks, including helping with a Salmon Days booth, being a “refuse ranger” or manning a shuttle bus.

This year’s Salmon Days is from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Oct. 1 and 2.

Potential volunteers should note that the volunteer party has been moved from its traditional date, said Pauline Middlehurst, sponsorship and promotions manager for the festival.

“This year, the sign-up party is a week early and on a different day, so we are really trying to let folks know in a timely manner,” Middlehurst said.

Following the pattern of previous years, the volunteer party would have been held the second Tuesday of September. The date was changed because Pickering Barn already was booked, Middlehurst said.

Besides the information booth and cleanup, folks are needed to man the festival bike corral, sell festival T-shirts and souvenirs, or assist with the Grande Parade on Oct. 1. All in all, organizers need help in about 15 different areas. Families or groups are invited to volunteer together.

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