City, chamber get tourism guidance

April 8, 2014

How can Issaquah attract more visitors?

That questions lies at the heart of a burgeoning effort by the city’s Economic Development Department and the Issaquah Chamber of Commerce. The “kickoff” for the effort was delivered March 31 by local tourism guru Roger Brooks.

“For more than 30 years, he has worked to change ordinary places to extraordinary destinations,” chamber CEO Matt Bott said, introducing the keynote speaker.

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Picture this

February 21, 2014

Issaquah sets its sights on adding the French town of Savigny-le-Temple to its family of sister cities.

The city of Issaquah is expecting.

Like most new parents, city officials have a special glow in anticipation of the new arrival. Members of the City Council and Sister Cities Commission are anxiously waiting for a written proposal from the town of Savigny-le-Temple in France to establish a Sister City relationship.

Contributed Minister Mohamed Saad El Alami, mayor of Chefchaouen (center), and former Issaquah Mayor Ava Frisinger (right) walk through the Moroccan city’s streets with other delegation members and a security detail in 2007.

Contributed
Minister Mohamed Saad El Alami, mayor of Chefchaouen (center), and former Issaquah Mayor Ava Frisinger (right) walk through the Moroccan city’s streets with other delegation members and a security detail in 2007.

The transatlantic courtship began last fall, when a delegation of students from the French town came to Issaquah during Salmon Days and were so impressed they requested their city reach out to establish an official relationship. Leaders from the community 20 miles southeast of Paris have made plans to send another contingent of young people to the Northwest this summer.

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UW students offer Issaquah ways to preserve identity

February 4, 2014

As Issaquah grows, a team of University of Washington students offered tips for how it can maintain its identity.

Aubri Denevan, Carrie Shepherd, Kim Lichttenegger and Yebin Zhou, members of a “Masters in Communications in Digital Media” program, were assigned the task of offering creative leadership to an area.

“At the beginning of the quarter, we were asked to give three problems we saw,” Lichttenegger said, adding that the students had to then identify recommendations to solve them. As a six-year resident of Issaquah, she saw a real opportunity to examine recommendations for the city. “Because I live in the lowlands, I work in Seattle and I commute up to the highlands, I’ve had a daily snapshot of all the building progress.”

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Finley and Gillda have a new fishy friend at the hatchery

January 7, 2014

Finley and Gillda, the two Issaquah Salmon Hatchery mascots, turned in for the night after New Year’s Day, and slept so soundly that they were not awakened by an anonymous overnight visitor with a delivery.

If they have ever yearned for an addition to the family, that wish was being fulfilled while they dreamed.

By Greg Farrar Jane Kuechle, executive director of Friends of the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery, enjoys the 5-foot salmon chainsaw art mysteriously donated in the wee hours of Jan. 2. The anonymous sculptor left it at the front entrance to the hatchery.

By Greg Farrar
Jane Kuechle, executive director of Friends of the Issaquah Salmon Hatchery, enjoys the 5-foot salmon chainsaw art mysteriously donated in the wee hours of Jan. 2. The anonymous sculptor left it at the front entrance to the hatchery.

When the two steel sculptures awoke the early morning of Jan. 2, they had a new buddy, 5 feet tall, made of a wooden log, with “Issaquah” carved in its base. The obvious intention was of it being a new permanent artistic attraction for local residents and annual Salmon Days visitors to enjoy.

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Editorial

October 1, 2013

Rain, rain, go away, Salmon Days here to stay

 

Rain, rain, so much rain. There may be more than one benefit to all the rain of the past few days, but in Issaquah there is one species that is welcoming the rushing creek waters.

Welcome home, salmon. This gush is just for you.

But now that the creek flow is strong and swift, calling the salmon home, the rain can quit. We’ve got a party coming on and 150,000 guests are due to arrive this weekend.

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Wake up, run with the fishes

October 1, 2013

The Issaquah Rotary Run with the Fishes is Oct. 6.

This year’s run is the 37th annual Rotary run. Runners can participate in the Run with the Fishes 5K Run/Walk or the Kids Dash.

For those who want to make a race of it, timing chips will be provided, or participants can just walk or stroll. Event proceeds benefit local charities supported by the Issaquah Rotary Foundation.

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Music Man

October 1, 2013

David Harris is still bookin’ rock ‘n’ roll after 30 years

David Harris’s earliest recollections of Salmon Days are of the festival being more like a town parade that featured the high school band, the Issaquah Indians football team, the National Guard and a fire truck with a guest appearance by JP Patches and Gertrude.

Little did the British expatriate know that in fall 1970, just a year after moving to Issaquah, he’d soon have a hand in shaping the town’s music scene for decades to come.

The 26-year-old had uprooted his wife and two children from southern London to take a job as an engineer with The Boeing Co. in 1965.

“I remember getting on the plane and literally not knowing where we were going,” Harris said.

By Greg Farrar David Harris (right) looks on as Mungo Jerry performs on the Rainier Avenue Stage during the 2009 Salmon Days Festival.

By Greg Farrar
David Harris (right) looks on as Mungo Jerry performs on the Rainier Avenue Stage during the 2009 Salmon Days Festival.

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Salmon Days is named best festival in the world

September 24, 2013

The 2012 Salmon Days Festival earned 11 international honors, festival organizers announced Sept. 17.

The annual event earned the coveted gold for the Haas Wilkerson Grand Pinnacle Award, given to the best overall festival. Issaquah bested festivals from all around the world in the $250,000 to $750,000 budget category. Salmon Days also received the prestigious honor in 2009.

“I am so grateful to be a part of such an amazing community of people who have made Salmon Days what it is for the last 43 years,” said Robin Kelley, festival director. “It has always been the best to us. It’s nice and humbling to see it recognized on the world stage.”

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Issaquah Salmon Days is named best festival in the world

September 20, 2013

NEW — 5:45 p.m. Sept. 20, 2013

The 2012 Salmon Days Festival earned 11 international honors, festival organizers announced Sept. 17.

The annual event earned the coveted gold for the Haas Wilkerson Grand Pinnacle Award, given to the best overall festival. Issaquah bested festivals from all around the world. Salmon Days also received the prestigious honor in 2009.

“I am so grateful to be a part of such an amazing community of people who have made Salmon Days what it is for the last 43 years,” said Robin Kelley, festival director. “It has always been the best to us. It’s nice and humbling to see it recognized on the world stage.”

The International Festivals and Events Association is the governing body and association responsible for the festival awards each year. This is the 57th IFEA award for Salmon Days since 2004 and the second time it has won gold in the Grand Pinnacle.

Splash!MOB contest takes over Issaquah

September 17, 2013

Issaquah shoppers and diners may have noticed a slew of richly decorated salmon perched among city businesses and restaurants.

The fake fish hold the key to a rather hefty prize.

The Salmon Days Festival’s Splash!MOB: The Ultimate Salmon Quest returns this year with a grand prize of $650 worth of local gift cards given to a lucky winner who completes the salmon scavenger hunt.

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