Pride of a city

February 21, 2014

Artist’s memory lives on in his many murals

Oregon-based muralist Larry Kangas was a one-man show with a paintbrush.

He had the innate ability to tell the story of a community with paint, ladders, a large blank wall and an unrivaled imagination.

 By Greg Farrar Larry Kangas puts some finishing touches on ‘The Mill Street Logging Scene,’ a mural of turn-of-the-century Issaquah, painted in 1997 on the wall of the Sunset Alehouse at the Downtown Issaquah Plaza.

By Greg Farrar
Larry Kangas puts some finishing touches on ‘The Mill Street Logging Scene,’ a mural of turn-of-the-century Issaquah, painted in 1997 on the wall of the Sunset Alehouse at the Downtown Issaquah Plaza.

Kangas died of cancer Nov. 25, 2013, but his memory lives on in the more than 1,000 murals he crafted across the Pacific Northwest, a few of which grace Issaquah walls.

“Larry never had any children. He was a great uncle for many kids, but he called his murals his kids, his legacy,” said Sandy Kangas, Larry’s wife.

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Shop small businesses Saturday

November 26, 2013

Shoppers this holiday season are being asked to join the nation in paying tribute to local venues when purchasing gifts for family and friends.

Several locations throughout Issaquah will participate in the national Small Business Saturday from noon to 8 p.m. Nov. 30.

In a bit of serendipity, shopping options this year include the new Grand Ridge Plaza in the Issaquah Highlands and Gilman Village celebrating its 40th anniversary. The two locations are in addition to the shops in the downtown corridor.

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Darigold union talks break down

September 18, 2013

NEW – 2:30 p.m. Sept. 18, 2013

Representatives from Darigold walked out of federal mediation Sept. 16, setting the stage for a potential lockout or strike at the company’s production facilities in Issaquah.

The walkout left no one with authority at the bargaining table, which could possibly lead to a labor dispute, according to a news release on the PR Newswire.

Bargaining between the union and the company began in April and continued throughout the summer, but talks broke down when Darigold insisted on significantly increasing the amount workers pay for their health care. On Aug.18, the workers voted 130-1 to authorize a strike.

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Issaquah receives creek restoration grant

January 1, 2013

Issaquah recently received a $225,000 state grant to restore salmon habitat along Issaquah Creek at a downtown parks site.

The grant is meant to supplement city dollars to restore aquatic and creekside habitat for chinook, coho and kokanee salmon, as well as cutthroat trout and steelhead, at the confluence of Issaquah Creek and the East Fork of Issaquah Creek. The city plans to contribute $45,000 to the project.

Plans call for crews to remove about 1,000 feet of rock creek banks, reconfigure 1,900 feet of channel, add logjams to form pools for fish, restore wetlands and replant vegetation along the creek.

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More kokanee return as community works to restore species

December 4, 2012

Homeowner funds $175,000 culvert project

Lake Sammamish kokanee salmon swim Nov. 27 in the restored stretch of Ebright Creek at Wally Pereyra’s property in the 100 block of East Lake Sammamish Parkway Southeast. By Greg Farrar

Lake Sammamish kokanee salmon — a landlocked cousin of sockeye and a species noted for distinctive red coloration — dwindled in recent decades, since before Wally Pereyra moved into a house along Ebright Creek in 1973.

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Darigold donates water for Lake Sammamish kokanee

November 6, 2012

Darigold joined the effort in recent weeks to preserve dwindling Lake Sammamish kokanee salmon, Friends of the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery announced Oct. 26.

The downtown Issaquah dairy is donating water from a well to the Lower Issaquah Valley Aquifer for the hatchery to use in the ongoing effort to restore kokanee. The contribution from Darigold should save the hatchery about $50,000 over the program’s anticipated lifespan through 2021.

Experts said the Darigold water is ideal for kokanee due to consistent quality and temperature. Using the water allows hatchery teams to prevent the fish from imprinting on Issaquah Creek water, and instead allows fry to imprint on Ebright, Laughing Jacobs and Lewis creeks.

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All aboard, Issaquah, as downtown trolley starts service

October 16, 2012

Barbara Justice drives Issaquah Valley Trolley Car No. 519 to the Issaquah Train Depot on Oct. 14. By Michael Johnson

The long-envisioned Issaquah Valley Trolley started service Oct. 14, as organizers start limited service after more than a decade of planning.

The public can ride the streetcar from the Issaquah Train Depot, 50 Rainier Blvd. N., during limited weekend service from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. into November.

The streetcar runs from the depot to the bridge across the East Fork of Issaquah Creek at Darigold, about a half-mile north.

Though the track extends to Northwest Gilman Boulevard, additional work is necessary to prepare the track to accommodate the trolley. North of Northwest Gilman Boulevard, crews removed the track to create the East Lake Sammamish Trail.

Downtown Issaquah streetcar rides start Oct. 14

October 9, 2012

The long-planned Issaquah Valley Trolley is due to start service Oct. 14, as organizers start limited service after more than a decade of planning.

Issaquah Valley Trolley Project volunteers plan to host a dedication ceremony at the Issaquah Train Depot, 50 Rainier Blvd. N., at 1 p.m. and then start public rides.

The public can ride the streetcar during limited weekend service from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. into November.

The streetcar runs from the depot to the bridge across the East Fork of Issaquah Creek at Darigold, about a half-mile north.

Though the track extends to Northwest Gilman Boulevard, additional work is necessary to prepare the track to accommodate the trolley. North of Northwest Gilman Boulevard, crews removed the track to create the East Lake Sammamish Trail.

Downtown Issaquah Valley Trolley starts service soon

October 8, 2012

Issaquah Valley Trolley Car No. 519 stops at the Issaquah Train Depot. Contributed from Issaquah Valley Trolley Project

NEW — 8 a.m. Oct. 8, 2012

The long-planned Issaquah Valley Trolley is due to start service Oct. 14, as organizers start limited service after more than a decade of planning.

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Trolley returns, and supporters prepare for rides to start in October

August 28, 2012

The next stop for the Issaquah Valley Trolley is downtown Issaquah.

Traffic is stopped at Front Street North and Northwest Dogwood Street as the restored Issaquah Valley Trolley Project car makes its way to the Issaquah Train Depot barn. By Greg Farrar

On Aug. 23, a vintage streetcar completed a 1,659-mile trip from Ida Grove, Iowa, to Issaquah aboard a specialized flatbed trailer. The arrival marked a milestone in the $744,700 effort to refurbish the vehicle, restore downtown railroad track and prepare the streetscape for streetcar traffic.

Organizers plan to start offering rides to the public starting Oct. 14, a day after a celebration for the Issaquah History Museums’ 40th anniversary. The planned route stretches about a half-mile from the Issaquah Train Depot to the East Fork of Issaquah Creek at Darigold.

“It looked every bit as good as we expected it to — and probably better,” Issaquah Valley Trolley Project Chairwoman Jean Cerar said. “If you gave it just a cursory glance, actually, it kind of looked like the car that left, only brighter.”

Crews repainted the streetcar in the same cream-and-red color scheme, but beneath the surface, workers installed modern systems and revamped the battered interior. The result “has that new trolley smell to it,” Cerar said.

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