January 8, 2013
The recent past for the Issaquah History Museums sounds almost like a hardscrabble chapter from local history.
Executive Director Erica Maniez, staffers and volunteers face a perennial challenge to convince the public why history matters and, more importantly in the short term, why the organization needs donations to continue operations, especially as nonprofit organizations dedicated to human services command the spotlight.
January 1, 2013
2013 goals are imperative for Issaquah
Our news staff and editorial board put their heads together each year to create a list of 2013 goals for the Issaquah area. Some are repeats from former years, but are still waiting to be accomplished.
December 31, 2012
NEW — 2 p.m. Dec. 31, 2012
The need is up nonprofit organizations, but as donors start to make out checks for year-end donations, local organizations sometimes struggle to stand out in a field crowded with requests for giving.
In King County, end-of-year charitable giving to nonprofit organizations is on the to-do list for many donors. The average person makes 24 percent of annual donations between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Eve, according to research from the Center on Philanthropy.
Issaquah and the Puget Sound region maintain a long-held reputation for generosity to charitable causes. The key for nonprofit organizations to successfully solicit donations, local leaders said, is to highlight successes.
December 18, 2012
The nonprofit Issaquah History Museums received a recent holiday surprise, after an anonymous donor agreed to match all donations to the organization’s annual fund through Dec. 28.
Donors can give to the museums at the organization’s website, www.issaquahhistory.org/donate#annualfund. The organization is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and a donation is tax-deductible.
The nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving local history operates the Gilman Town Hall Museum and the Issaquah Depot Museum. Donations fund the museums’ mission, as government funding for the organization is limited.
“I hope you’ll take advantage of this opportunity to double your donation to the IHM,” Executive Director Erica Maniez wrote to community members. “Your help is deeply appreciated!”
November 27, 2012
Add a hefty helping of cookies, an appearance by Santa himself and a dash of historical education, and you’ve got the ingredients for a perfect Issaquah holiday tradition — the Issaquah History Museums’ ninth annual holiday open house.
This year’s event will be Dec. 1 at the Issaquah Train Depot. Past events have attracted upward of 350 people and the museum staff expects about the same this year, said Laile Di Silvestro, program coordinator for the museums.
“It’s a really popular event, mostly with families with kids because it’s a fun place for the kids to meet Santa, and it’s great because there is a historical aspect to it,” she said.
October 9, 2012
The museums, founded in 1972 as the Issaquah Historical Society, marks 40 years Oct. 13 and to celebrate, staffers enlisted organizations and volunteers to create the cakes, but rather than the from-the-box Betty Crocker or Duncan Hines confections, bakers agreed to follow recipes lifted from Issaquah’s past.
The community celebration offers participants a chance to sample the cakes, learn about the museums’ history, dance and listen to local musicians perform. Bakers agreed to make a pair of cakes — a cake for eating at the event and another cake for a silent auction.
October 9, 2012
In 40 years, the Issaquah History Museums has experienced numerous milestones.
- 1972 — Issaquah Historical Society is founded.
- 1972 — Issaquah Historical Society leases Gilman Town Hall from city.
- 1973 — Gilman Town Hall opens as organization’s historical center.
- 1983 — Society negotiates purchase of Issaquah Train Depot from city.
- 1985 — Ground is broken on depot restoration project.
- 1985 — Work on Gilman Town Hall remodel starts.
- 1989 — Weyerhaeuser Corp. donates caboose to the organization.
- 1992 — Issaquah Train Depot is added to the National Register of Historic Places.
- 2004 — Issaquah Historical Society changes name to Issaquah History Museums.
- 2005 — Puget Sound Energy donates historic Alexander House to the museums. The organization later donates the building to the Issaquah Chamber of Commerce for offices.
- 2006 — Museums’ oral history project captures the stories and memories of about 25 narrators.
- 2012 — Refurbished Issaquah Valley Trolley Project streetcar returns to Issaquah for service.
October 2, 2012
The committee responsible for doling out lodging tax dollars for tourism projects and programs is accepting grant applications.
The municipal Lodging Tax Advisory Committee plans to distribute about $85,000 in 2013. Past recipients include the Issaquah Visitor’s Center, Issaquah History Museums and the Issaquah Chamber of Commerce Festivals Office.
The 1 percent lodging tax is collected by three hotels and motels. Under state law, revenue can only be used to pay all or any part of tourism promotion, acquisition of tourism-related facilities or the operation of tourism-related facilities.
Find the application on the city’s website, www.ci.issaquah.wa.us. The deadline for applications is 4 p.m. Oct. 22.
Contact city Economic Development Manager Andrea Lehner at 837-3424 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
September 25, 2012
Doug Browning knew he had a good thing going with open mic night. Now if only he could convince the owner of a venue to give his event a permanent home.
After a virtual game of musical chairs in locations in restaurants around town, Browning believes his group has struck a deal to keep a musical evening for amateur singers in a permanent home for the foreseeable future.
The Downtown Issaquah Association is now co-sponsoring the event along with the Issaquah History Museums and the Issaquah Valley Senior Center, Browning said.
It was much like a three-team trade — the open mic guys get to use the depot museum and the history museums gets to use the senior center in return. Everybody wins.
August 28, 2012
The next stop for the Issaquah Valley Trolley is downtown Issaquah.
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.