State: Licenses decline for retail fireworks stands

June 11, 2012

NEW — 6 a.m. June 11, 2012

Independence Day could feature less bang and boom in Washington.

The state fire marshal said the number of retail fireworks stand licenses issued in 2012 is down 4.2 percent, or by 39 licenses, from last year. Before a city or county can issue a permit to operate a retail fireworks stand, a state license is required.

Counties issue the licenses. The number of licenses issued in King County dropped by five from 2011 to 2012. Snohomish County experienced the largest drop, at seven.

Sales of consumer fireworks start at noon June 28 and end at 11 p.m. July 5.

In Issaquah, discharging fireworks is banned on Independence Day and the rest of the year. Usually, Issaquah Police Department officers issue a verbal warning for fireworks and confiscate them for a first offense. If police catch revelers putting off fireworks again, a citation is issued.

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Organizers need vendors, volunteers for Independence Day

June 5, 2012

Organizers need vendors and volunteers to make the Down Home 4th of July and Heritage Day Celebration — Issaquah’s annual Independence Day celebration — a success.

The action starts at 10 a.m. July 4 as participants gather and register for the Kids, Pets ‘n’ Pride Parade. The parade starts at 11 a.m.

Revelers then head to Veterans’ Memorial Park for a hay hunt, three-legged and gunnysack races, pony rides, face painting, bouncy houses, and a slug race and beauty pageant. Participants must provide their own slugs. Save room for a pie-eating contest at about 1:30 p.m.

In order to present the celebration, organizers need volunteers to participate in setup and tear-down, and to work in the retail area and at activity stations.

Organizers offer booths to nonprofit organizations, arts and crafts vendors, and commercial ventures.

Find the application forms for the parade, vendors and volunteers at www.salmondays.org/4th-of-july.html.

120 years of Issaquah

April 24, 2012

Click on the image to view the full-size timeline.

1892

  • Issaquah is founded as Gilman. The city is named for railroad baron Daniel Hunt Gilman.

1893

  • The postmaster called for mail sent to Gilman to be addressed to Olney, Wash., to avoid confusion between Gilman and Gilmer, another city in the state.

1895

  • Townsfolk start calling the frontier town Issaquah, or “the sound of water birds” in the language of the American Indians native to the region.

1899

  • State lawmakers approve official name change from Gilman to Issaquah.

1900

  • Wilbur W. Sylvester founds the Bank of Issaquah in a clapboard building.

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Off the Press

July 12, 2011

Slugs ooze to finish at slimy sprint

Laura Geggel Press reporter

I found the slug underneath a garden pot housing a lemon-scented geranium. The slimy hermaphrodite didn’t stand a chance. I scooped it up in a Tupperware container filled with damp leaves and dirt, and left it outside on my porch where it would stay cool during the night.

The next day, I brought it to Issaquah’s annual Down Home Fourth of July slug race. Jenna Powell, an 11-year-old from Tennessee who was visiting her Sammamish cousin, crowded around the racetrack with the other children, trying to get a better view of the slugs.

“I’ve never seen anything like this before,” she said. “I’ve seen duck, frog and turtle races, but not a slug race.”

Before the competition, children presented their gastropod mollusks for the traditional beauty pageant — several slugs wore paper crowns and conical princess hats (all were winners, Salmon Days Festival organizer and slug race referee Robin Kelley said).

It was a hot day to race, let alone to be a slug, but all eight of them revved up their slime machines the moment they were placed on the circular racetrack.

The first slug to reach the outer circle of the target sign won, and that honor fell on Slimy, a leopard slug uncovered by Clark Elementary School student Hannah Prouty, who went slug hunting by her playhouse.

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Fourth of July firework calls cause boom for Issaquah police

July 12, 2011

Police responded to numerous fireworks complaints on the Fourth of July and days leading up to the holiday, despite a citywide fireworks ban.

Issaquah officers received the initial fireworks-related call at 11:35 p.m. July 1 and such calls — 25 total — continued through late July 5.

In many instances, officers could not locate people reported to be discharging fireworks or, after reaching a location described in a call, found the renegade fireworks fanatics had already left.

Police warned a group of parents and children setting off fireworks in the 800 block of Wildwood Boulevard Southwest at 9:31 p.m. July 4 after a neighbor complained. Police also located a discharged fireworks box in the 200 block of Southwest Clark Street at 11:19 that night after receiving a fireworks complaint.

On the morning after the holiday, police also received a report of a blown-out mailbox in the 4100 block of 185th Place Southeast — possible collateral damage from Independence Day merriment.

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Issaquah residents defy Fourth of July fireworks ban

July 5, 2011

NEW — 3:30 p.m. July 5, 2011

Police responded to numerous fireworks complaints on the Fourth of July and days leading up to the holiday, despite a citywide fireworks ban.

Issaquah officers received the initial fireworks call at 11:35 p.m. July 1 and such calls — 22 total — continued through early Tuesday morning.

In many instances, officers could not locate people reported to be discharging fireworks or, after reaching a location described in a call, found the renegade fireworks fanatics had already left.

Police warned a group of parents and children setting off fireworks in the 800 block of Wildwood Boulevard Southwest at 9:31 p.m. Monday after a neighbor complained. Police also located a discharged fireworks box in the 200 block of Southwest Clark Street at 11:19 p.m. Monday after receiving a fireworks complaint.

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Issaquah’s Down Home Fourth of July / July 4, 2011

July 4, 2011

Issaquah fireworks ban applies on Independence Day

July 3, 2011

NEW — 8 a.m. July 3, 2011

Forget about lighting a Roman candle to celebrate Independence Day in Issaquah.

King County fire officials remind Independence Day revelers to use caution if they plan to discharge fireworks to celebrate the holiday.

Use only approved, legal and common fireworks from reliable state- and King County Fire Marshal-licensed retailers.

Remember: If a firework has a stick or fins, and if it goes up or if it blows up, it is illegal in Washington.

Celebrants should always have a responsible adult light all fireworks, and avoid aerial fireworks. Use eye protection, too.

Have a garden hose or a fire extinguisher handy during fireworks-related activities.

Use fireworks under outdoor conditions only, away from buildings, wood-shingled houses, trees and dry fields.

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Prepare for Fourth of July road closures in Issaquah

July 3, 2011

NEW — 8 a.m. July 3, 2011

Motorists should plan ahead for Fourth of July road closures in downtown Issaquah on Monday, as revelers gather for a parade and festival.

Expect closures along Front Street North from Northwest Gilman Boulevard to East Sunset Way, Rainier Boulevard North from Northwest Dogwood Street to Northwest Juniper Street, East Sunset Way from Front Street to Second Avenue Southeast, and Front Street South from East Sunset Way to Newport Way Southwest from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The annual Down Home Fourth of July includes the Kids, Pets N’ Pride Parade at 11 a.m. at Rainier Boulevard North, at the intersection of Northwest Dogwood Street and Front Street North.

Following the parade, families can plays games at Veterans’ Memorial Field and learn about Issaquah’s history from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Issaquah Train Depot’s Heritage Day celebration, 50 Rainier Boulevard N.

On Veterans’ Memorial Field, children can enter potato sack, slug and three-legged races, or saddle up for pony rides.

Safety is important for pets, too, on Fourth of July

July 3, 2011

NEW — 6 a.m. July 3, 2011

Regional Animal Services of King County is urging residents to keep pets safe during the holiday weekend.

Every year around Independence Day, fireworks scare pets and cause animals to run away. Many turn up in area animal shelters after the holiday.

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