State adds flexible start date to Discover Pass

November 23, 2012

NEW — 6 a.m. Nov. 23, 2012

State agencies encourage holiday shoppers to consider a Discover Pass as a gift for family and friends interested in the outdoors.

Officials added a feature recently to allow purchasers to choose the pass’ start date. The option is available to customers who purchasing the pass at www.discoverpass.wa.gov, or in person from authorized retailers through the Washington Interactive Licensing Database, or WILD, system.

The pass is available in Issaquah at Big 5 Sporting Goods, Fred Meyer and Sports Authority.

The buyer can activate the pass immediately or on any day within one year of purchase.

State legislators passed the option into law in 2012 to allow greater flexibility to outdoor recreation enthusiasts, including people interested in giving the pass as a gift.

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Cool off on a river float, but remember safety tips

June 28, 2012

Rumor has it there’s a season in the year where the sun outmuscles the clouds and shines for more than once a week.

Were that rumor to come true, some rain-drenched, sun-starved Washingtonians will no doubt choose to spend their days tubing in one of the state’s rivers and lakes.

Don Martin, an experienced rescuer, river guide and owner of whitewater rafting company River Recreation, said rivers and lakes offer different advantages.

“The allure of rivers is that you’re traveling to a different section of river,” as you float, he said. A lake offers a calmer alternative, with not so much moving water. Washington state is full of lakes like that, he added.

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Users can transfer state recreation pass between vehicles

April 10, 2012

Users can transfer the Discover Pass for state parks and recreation lands between vehicles, under legislation Gov. Chris Gregoire signed March 30 — not long before Memorial Day launches the summer recreation season.

The change to the 1-year-old Discover Pass took effect immediately. The legislation allows users to transfer the annual pass between two vehicles at no additional cost.

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Issaquah Soccer Club raises $3,500 for Seattle Children’s

November 21, 2011

NEW — 6 a.m. Nov. 21, 2011

Issaquah Soccer Club members donated $3,500 to Seattle Children’s to honor a player treated at the hospital and to help other children.

Soon after Gabriel Uribe turned 3, doctors diagnosed him with a severe form of epilepsy. Gabriel, barely able to walk or talk, Gabriel suffered more than 1,000 epileptic seizures per day during the worst period. Doctors told his parents he had only a 50 percent chance of surviving to adulthood, until he started treatment at Seattle Children’s.

Nowadays, Gabriel is a healthy 10-year-old and a member of the Issaquah Soccer Club’s Gunners premier squad.

Gabriel accompanied Issaquah Soccer Club President and Bret Knutson and Jimmy Ball, director of coaching, to present the $3,500 check to Seattle Children’s.

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Sports kick off Salmon Days Festival celebration

September 20, 2011

If walking with a GPS unit is your idea of exercise or if you are one of those who people who prefers a brisk 10K run, the Salmon Days Festival has something for all types of the sporting crowd this year.

The Ohfishal Salmon Days Sporting Weekend features geo-teaming and the Issaquah Rotary Run.

Geoteaming, a unique sport, is Sept. 24. The annual Issaquah Rotary Run, for serious runners as well as joggers, is Oct. 2.

Both events have their special features.

Geoteaming is a fun, interactive and high-tech scavenger hunt using hand-held GPS units to navigate to hidden treasures in and around Issaquah. Individuals or teams can participate in the event.

Each found cache earns a team or individual many valuable points toward a final score. All equipment is provided. Participants should have appropriate-weather clothes and walking shoes. The event begins and finishes at Rogue’s Issaquah Brewhouse, 35 W. Sunset Way.

There are two sessions of geo-teaming each day. The first session runs from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Sept. 24. Teams must sign in by 9:30 a.m. Sept. 24. The second session runs from 1-3 p.m., and teams must sign in by noon.

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Discover Pass is required for state parks, recreation lands July 1

June 28, 2011

Summer days spent lounging lakeside at Lake Sammamish State Park or hiking in Tiger Mountain State Forest start to cost most users a fee soon.

The cash-strapped state is preparing to debut the Discover Pass on July 1, just as the Fourth of July weekend causes attendance to swell at state parks and recreation lands. The permit is required to park vehicles at state recreation sites and other public lands.

The base price for the annual pass is $30, although consumers should expect to shell out another $5 in fees. The day-use pass — base price: $10 — carries $1.50 in additional fees.

State officials maintain the pass is necessary to avoid closing state parks and other sites to public access, but outdoors enthusiasts said the requirement serves a barrier to parkgoers, and could cause attendance to drop.

The pass is needed for parking access to 7 million acres of state recreation lands under the jurisdiction of the Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission, state Department of Natural Resources, and state Department of Fish and Wildlife. State recreation lands include state parks, boat launches, heritage sites, wildlife and natural areas, campgrounds, trails and trailheads.

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Saddle up for Issaquah bike safety fair Saturday

June 8, 2011

NEW — 4 p.m. June 8, 2011

Learn the importance of safe riding Saturday and Sunday as The Optimist Club of Issaquah & the Eastside hosts free bike safety fairs in Issaquah and Bellevue.

In Issaquah, the fair is noon to 3 p.m. Saturday at Issaquah Valley Elementary School, 555 N.W. Holly St. in Issaquah. In Bellevue, the event is noon to 3 p.m. Sunday at Newport Heights Elementary School, 5225 119th Ave. S.E. Call 829-7864 to learn more.

The attractions — geared for children in kindergarten to fifth-grade — include obstacle courses and free bike helmets. For the obstacle course, children who bring bikes can participate and receive free bike tune-ups. Other attractions include bike registrations and face painting, plus adult resources on health, safety, education and recreation.

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Issaquah tragedies, triumphs define a tumultuous year

December 28, 2010

Traffic lines up on state Route 900 at Northwest Talus Drive in February. State Department of Transportation crews completed the long-running project in 2010. By Greg Farrar

The economy lurched from the recession, population growth all but stalled and Issaquah — after cutbacks and setbacks in 2009 — defied the odds to reach major milestones throughout 2010.

Momentum returned in 2010 after a year spent in a holding pattern. Set against the backdrop of a fragile recovery, leaders cut the ribbon on businesses and roads, laid the foundation for preservation and construction, and marked tragedies and successes. Read more

Mayor unveils proposed 2011 city budget

October 5, 2010

Issaquah leaders plan a slight increase in city spending for next year, as the effects of the recession diminish and large construction projects continue.

Mayor Ava Frisinger has proposed a $30.4 million general fund budget for next year — a minor uptick from the $29.8 million general fund budget approved by the council last December. The proposed budget does not include recommendations for a property tax hike or rate increases. The plan does not cut city positions.

Frisinger characterized the proposed budget as austere, a nod to the uncertain nature of the economic recovery.

“We try to focus on the things that are the core functions of the departments,” she said. “I count on the department directors to tell me which things, if they are not done, are going to have dire consequences.”

The city deferred some maintenance and delayed building upgrades in order to cut costs last year. Frisinger said residents might notice frayed edges at municipal buildings as a result.

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Registration remains open for Issaquah Run at Salmon Days

October 1, 2010

NEW — 9:55 a.m. Oct. 1, 2010

Runners can still reserve a spot in the 34th annual Issaquah Run at Salmon Days on Sunday.

Participants can run in the 10K race, the 5K run/walk/crawl or the 1K kids dash. Some of the proceeds benefit the nonprofit Issaquah Schools Foundation. The race is produced by the Issaquah Rotary Club.

Register Saturday at Issaquah FootZone, 755 N.W. Gilman Blvd., Suite J, from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Or register on race day near the starting line. The starting line is near Sports Authority, 1185 N.W. Gilman Blvd. Find registration fees here.

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