Hatchery celebrates 75 years as Salmon Days returns

October 6, 2012

NEW — 6 a.m. Oct. 6, 2012

Salmon Days draws an average of 150,000 visitors to the streets of Issaquah. However, over the course of the fall season, between 9,000 and 10,000 students alone journey from all over the Puget Sound region to the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery to learn more about the star of the show.

Celebrating its 75th year in operation, the hatchery has evolved to include more learning opportunities for the young and young-at-heart. Bringing that history lesson to the masses via PowerPoint is Jane Kuechle, hatchery executive director.

The hatchery site actually was once part of the aptly named City Park, connected to downtown Issaquah via a wooden bridge over Issaquah Creek. The park, with its bandstand and speaking platform, played host to holiday celebrations and many a family picnic along the creek.

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Spot Salmon Days’ Roving Fish Fan for prizes

October 6, 2012

NEW — 6 a.m. Oct. 6, 2012

Find the Roving Fish Fan at the Salmon Days Festival to reel in prizes from the pun-happy festival’s ohfishal spawnsors.

Spot the Roving Fish Fan on Saturday and Sunday for a chance to win.

Find real-time clues to find the Roving Fish Fan on Twitter to find out what he or she is wearing, and learn secret clue words to become a winner.

The first person to find the Roving Fish Fan at different locations within the festival is provided with a booth number or business card to claim a prize.

Use the hashtag #SalmonDays to join the festival on Twitter.

Salmon Days Festival returns to downtown Issaquah

October 2, 2012

A chinook tries to surmount the weir Sept. 28 at the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery. By Greg Farrar

The ode to salmon migration, Issaquah’s iconic Salmon Days Festival, returns to downtown Issaquah on Oct. 6-7.

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Salmon Days Festival spawns road closures

October 2, 2012

Motorists should prepare for road closures throughout the Salmon Days Festival.

Expect closures on the following streets from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. Oct. 6-7:

  • Front Street from Newport Way Southwest to Northwest Gilman Boulevard
  • East Sunset Way from Second Avenue Southeast to Newport Way Northwest
  • Rainier Boulevard South and First Avenue Southeast from East Sunset Way to the Issaquah Community Center
  • Southeast Bush Street and Southeast Andrews Street from Second Avenue Southeast to Front Street South
  • First Place Northeast and First Avenue Northwest from West Sunset Way to Northwest Dogwood Street

Expect closures on the following streets from 9 a.m. to noon Oct. 6 to accommodate the Salmon Days Grande Parade:

  • 12th Avenue Northwest from Northwest Maple Street to Northwest Gilman Boulevard
  • Northeast Gilman Boulevard and Northeast Dogwood Street from Third Avenue Northwest to Front Street North
  • Rainier Boulevard North from Northwest Dogwood Street to Northwest Juniper Street.

Parking near downtown Issaquah is also a challenge during the festival, and Salmon Days visitors should consider the event shuttle.

Shuttles depart from the Issaquah Transit Center, 1050 17th Ave. N.W., Costco corporate headquarters parking lot, 11th Avenue Northwest and Lake Drive, and Issaquah Highlands Park & Ride, 1755 Highlands Drive N.E.

The cost for a shuttle is $2 round trip for adults; children 12 and younger ride for free. Parking is free at the shuttle departure points.

Salmon Days Festival to feature Vietnam-era patrol boat

October 2, 2012

Members of the Gamewardens Association Inc., Vietnam to Present, stand in front of a Vietnam-era patrol boat. The association is bringing the boat to Salmon Days and offering guided tours to the public. Contributed

Salmon Days revelers can get a firsthand look at a Vietnam-era river patrol boat, similar to the ones featured in the film “Apocalypse Now,” at this year’s event.

The Northwest chapter of the Gamewardens Association Inc., Vietnam to Present, will participate in the parade aboard a fully operational Mark II Patrol Boat, River, or PBR, on Saturday. The group will also offer guided tours of the boat at the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery.

The association is an organization whose members fought or supported combat operations as part of Task Force 116, also known as Operation Gamewardens, on the rivers and canals during the Vietnam War, according to Stephen Morrison, the Northwest chapter’s president.

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Salmon Days Festival catches international honors

October 2, 2012

The iconic Salmon Days Festival caught six international honors, festival organizers announced Sept. 24.

The awards from the International Festivals & Events Association recognized the 2011 festival and the theme “Wild Things!” Salmon Days earned a prestigious Bronze Haas & Wilkerson Pinnacle Award — a top honor for festivals — plus awards for clothing and merchandise.

The festival competes against other events in the $250,000 to $749,999 budget category.

Salmon Days received top — or Gold — honors for Best Hat, Best Other Merchandise and Best Miscellaneous Clothing.

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Rogue Ales unveils Roe Ale for Salmon Days

October 2, 2012

Cheers to Salmon Days.

Sample a taste of Salmon Days at the Issaquah Brewhouse, as Rogue Ales rolls out Roe Ale for the fall festival.

Roe Ale is the downtown Issaquah brewery’s sixth custom bottle produced for the Salmon Days Festival. The brew includes ingredients from throughout the Pacific Northwest and is available in 22-ounce bottles during the festival at the brewhouse, 35 W. Sunset Way.

Press Editorial

October 2, 2012

Get ready to greet Salmon Days visitors

It’s that time again.

Time to strut our stuff for the 180,000 or so people who will come to our city to see the best we have to offer.

Time for us to gather together to celebrate the return of the salmon to their home of Issaquah. (And if you haven’t been to the hatchery to watch them swim and leap, you simply must go. The majestic fish have traveled far and wide into the ocean and back. Go and see them while you can.)

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Off the Press

October 2, 2012

Salmon Days carol completes fall season

Greg Farrar
Press photographer

In honor of the approaching weekend, it comes to mind that we should remember the words to our favorite Salmon Days carol and share them with anyone new to Issaquah, so here they are!

“Here Come Salmon Days”

Here come Salmon Days,

Here come Salmon Days,

Right down Salmon Days Lane!

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Tribal tales from a kokanee salmon, as told to Dallas Cross

October 2, 2012

Dallas Cross

Before the Ice Age my ancestral sockeye salmon bearing our tribal name, oncorhynchus nerka, regularly came from the ocean to Lake Sammamish to find mates and reproduce in its streams. As it got colder, a huge glacier cut off the escape of the tribe to Puget Sound. Being trapped, we had to adapt to living our entire lives in fresh water.

It was difficult at first, but soon we were feeding on the small daphnia or water fleas living in the lake. Because daphnia are not as big as krill in the ocean, our size got smaller. Our tribe enjoyed less swimming distance for a lifecycle and we were glad not to be eaten by big salt-water fish and seals. We became land-locked in the lake and its streams. We adapted and survived.

We did retain some traditions of our sea-run ancestors, such as only living three to five years, turning red to spawn, running up streams to lay and fertilize our eggs, and dying afterward. Our short life spans allowed us to make rapid genetic changes in response to climate changes and food availability.

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