Boys in the Hall

Published by Steve Campion. Category: Sports & Recreation

One Hall of Fame entered, one to go.

That’s the general consensus after former baseball star Ken Griffey Jr was inducted into the Seattle Mariners Hall of Fame this evening.  Griffey was not merely one of Seattle‘s best athletes.  He was one the best to ever play the game of baseball.  Period.  The Hall of Fame in Cooperstown will likely call him in a few more years.

The Seattle Mariners Hall of Fame was created in 1997 with the induction of Alvin Davis, Seattle’s first national star.  Davis won American League Rookie of the Year honors in 1984, and took home the team MVP in 1984, 1988, and 1989.  Over the next several years, Davis welcomed new teammates destined to be stars and Hall of Famers themselves: Edgar Martinez in 1987, Jay Buhner in 1988, and both Ken Griffey Jr and Randy Johnson in 1989.  With Dave Niehaus in the broadcast booth, six of the seven current member of the Mariners Hall of Fame were together for a time, 1989-1991.  A slightly different combination of six future Hall of Famers were in Seattle 1994-1998, after Davis retired and Wilson joined the team.  That era included the Mariners’ “Refuse to Lose” season (1995) and the first trips into the postseason.  Three current Hall of Famers — we expect more to be added — were on the record-breaking 116-win season (2001): Buhner, Martinez, and Wilson.

There are many remarkable feats, awards, statistics, and memories involving these seven men, but today we simply list their names and careers.  A Hall of Fame berth is award enough.

MEMBERS OF THE SEATTLE MARINERS HALL OF FAME

Hall of Famer Primary Position Mariners’ career Inducted
Alvin Davis First Baseman 1984-1991 1997 Jun 14
Dave Niehaus Broadcaster 1977-2010 2000 May 7*
Jay Buhner Outfielder 1988-2001 2004 Aug 24
Edgar Martinez Designated Hitter 1987-2004 2007 Jun 2
Randy Johnson Pitcher 1989-1998 2012 Jul 28
Dan Wilson Catcher 1994-2005 2012 Jul 28
Ken Griffey Jr Outfielder 1989-1999,
2009-2010
2013 Aug 10

*In 2008, Dave Neihaus was awarded the Ford C. Frick Award by the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, NY.

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A State’s Library Card Gallery

Published by Steve Campion. Category: Education & Research

Your library card is probably on this map of Washington (or in the gallery below).  The map is a mosaic of almost 100 different cards from public libraries around the state.

Amazing things, library cards.  The cards themselves are often merely a piece of barcoded plastic, but the people and services standing behind them multiply the value exponentially. Cards offer their owners access to books, media, databases, and resources which in turn convert to imagination, education, careers, and assistance in countless forms.

We contacted every public library in Washington and asked them to contribute a card (real or digital image) to our project.  The first card arrived within ten minutes.  Most other libraries responded over the following weeks as we checked back a couple more times. Some librarians loved the idea. They balked at sending us just one design; they boasted several cards and wanted to show off each and every one.  We’re very grateful for their enthusiasm.

In the end we collected 99 cards from 49 different library systems, mixed them into the mosaic shown above and added them to the illustrated list below. (FYI: There are 58 library systems in Washington that use cards and two that don’t.  Only nine libraries did not submit cards to the project.)  UPDATE 8/5/13: We have received an additional card from a 50th library and will include it in the gallery at a later date.

  • The mosaic (above): It’s hard to see details clearly, but we assure you that all the library cards we received are on the map at least once.  Many of them, particularly those featuring green, appear multiple times.
  • The list (below): We conceived this project as a colorful gallery showing off the variety of library cards and the vitality of libraries in Washington.  Some images tout a child’s first card, appeal to teen audiences, or show the joy of reading.  Several show a library building, local landmarks, scenery, or wildlife.  Many other cards are infused with pride for the various communities each library serves.  There are line drawings, photos, graphics, and designs contest winners. There are also cards without marketing glitz of any kind; they proudly do their job with the utilitarian efficiency of a name on paper.

Can you find your card?  If  you don’t have a card from your local library, for crying out loud go get one now!  We’ll wait for you.


PUBLIC LIBRARY CARDS IN WASHINGTON STATE

All 96 cards are arranged here in alphabetical order by library name except for the four vertical cards that we tucked in at the end to make the images line up well.

Anacortes Public Library Asotin County Library
Anacortes Public Library <<->> Asotin County Library
Asotin County Library Asotin County Library
Asotin County Library
Asotin County Library Asotin County Library
Asotin County Library
Asotin County Library Bellingham Public Library
Asotin County Library <<->> Bellingham Public Library
Cathlamet Public Library Columbia County Rural Library District
Cathlamet Public Library <<->> Columbia County Rural Library District
Denny Ashby Library (Pomeroy) Ellensburg Public Library
Denny Ashby Library (Pomeroy) <<->> Ellensburg Public Library
Everett Public Library Everett Public Library
Everett Public Library
Everett Public Library Everett Public Library
Everett Public Library
Everett Public Library Everett Public Library
Everett Public Library
Fort Vancouver Regional Library Grandview Library
Fort Vancouver Regional Library District <<->> Grandview Library
Harrington Library Hesseltine Library (Wilbur)
Harrington Library <<->> Hesseltine Library (Wilbur)
Jefferson County Library Kalama Public Library
Jefferson County Library <<->> Kalama Public Library
King County Library King County Library
King County Library System
King County Library King County Library
King County Library System
King County Library King County Library
King County Library System
King County Library King County Library
King County Library System
King County Library King County Library
King County Library System
Kitsap Regional Library LaConner Regional Library
Kitsap Regional Library<<->> LaConner Regional Library
Liberty Lake Municipal Library Longview Public Library
Liberty Lake Municipal Library <<->> Longview Public Library
Lopez Island Library Mid-Columbia Libraries
Lopez Island Library <<->> Mid-Columbia Libraries
Mid-Columbia Libraries Mid-Columbia Libraries
Mid-Columbia Libraries
Mid-Columbia Libraries Mount Vernon City Library
Mid-Columbia Libraries <<->> Mount Vernon City Library
Neill Public Library (Pullman) North Central Regional Library
Neill Public Library (Pullman) <<->> North Central Regional Library
North Central Regional Library North Olympic Library System
North Central Regional Library <<->> North Olympic Library System
North Olympic Library System North Olympic Library System
North Olympic Library System
North Olympic Library System North Olympic Library System
North Olympic Library System
Orcas Island Public Library Ocean Shores Library
Orcas Island Public Library <<->> Ocean Shores Library
Ocean Shores Library Ocean Shores Library
Ocean Shores Library
Ocean Shores Library Pierce County Library System
Ocean Shores Library <<->> Pierce County Library System
Pierce County Library System Pierce County Library System
Pierce County Library System
Pierce County Library System Pend Oreille County Library District
Pierce County Library System <<->> Pend Oreille County Library District
Port Townsend Public Library Puyallup Public Library
Port Townsend Public Library <<->> Puyallup Public Library
Richland Public Library Richland Public Library
Richland Public Library
Richland Public Library Ritzville Library District
Richland Public Library <<->> Ritzville Library District
Roslyn Public Library San Juan Island Library District
Roslyn Public Library <<->> San Juan Island Library
San Juan Island Library District Seattle Public Library
San Juan Island Library <<->> Seattle Public Library
Seattle Public Library Seattle Public Library
Seattle Public Library
Seattle Public Library Seattle Public Library
Seattle Public Library
Seattle Public Library Sno-Isle Public Library
Seattle Public Library <<->> Sno-Isle Public Library
Sno-Isle Public Library Spokane County Library District
Sno-Isle Public Library <<->> Spokane County Library District
Spokane Public Library Spokane Public Library
Spokane Public Library
Sprague Public Library Libraries of Stevens County
Sprague Public Library <<->> Libraries of Stevens County
Timberland Regional Library Timberland Regional Library
Timberland Regional Library
Walla Walla Public Library Washington State Library
Walla Walla Public Library <<->> Washington State Library
Weller Public Library (Waitsburg) Whatcom County Library System
Weller Public Library (Waitsburg) <<->> Whatcom County Library System
Whatcom County Library System Whatcom County Library System
Whatcom County Library System
Whatcom County Library System Whitman County Library
Whatcom County Library System <<->> Whitman County Library
Yakima Valley Libraries
Yakima Valley Libraries
Burlington Public Library Pierce County Library System
Burlington Public Library <<->> Pierce County Library System
Walla Walla Public Library Whatcom County Library System
Walla Walla Public Library <<->> Whatcom County Library System


MOSAIC by Steve Campion

SOURCE:  All the card images in this gallery appear courtesy of the libraries from which they came.  We collected them in June and July, 2013 — by mail, e-mail, and in person. Some libraries provided us with more than one.  Yay, librarians!  Thank you.

NOTE: We at WA-List enjoy creating and sharing lists about Washington. We also work in a public library system and have active cards from five other libraries to boot.  As colorful as those cards are, we find their usefulness even more valuable.  It’s no wonder that we eventually hit on the idea of gathering a list — a gallery — of library cards from all across the state.  We were surprised no one had done it before.

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3 Days and 2 Nights in Wenatchee

Published by Steve Campion. Category: Counties & Towns

Looking for an enjoyable weekend getaway without leaving the state?  Consider Wenatchee.  The city nearest the geographic center of Washington is not only the apple capital of the United States, but it makes a relaxing summer getaway without the fuss of airports or rental cars.

What might you do on a Wenatchee vacation?  We asked the people at the Wenatchee Valley Chamber of Commerce & Visitor Center to imagine Three Days and Two Nights for a hypothetical adult couple in their town.  They took up our challenge and designed the weekend itinerary below.  The result has enough coffee and alcohol to happily lubricate the visit and still leave time to shop and take in the views of the Columbia River and surrounding mountains.  There are plenty of other places to go and things to do in Wenatchee, of course, but we intentionally asked the visitor center to kept it simple.  We hoped to show some of the city without running anyone ragged on a see-everything-at-once-visit.

We call this series Three Days and Two Nights.  We want to share sample itineraries for weekend vacations in various Washington locations.  Our intent isn’t to burden readers with dozens of places to go in a crazy 60-hour frenzy.  On the contrary.  We want to keep things simple by suggesting a realistic experience — one that you might quickly visualize in your mind before grabbing a calendar to start making plans. Travel locally and explore the Northwest. You can squeeze a lot of memories into a 3 day weekend.

THREE DAYS AND TWO NIGHTS IN WENATCHEE, WASHINGTON


Friday afternoon

Arrive in Wenatchee.  Check into the COAST Hotel (201 N Wenatchee Ave, 509-662-1234) located downtown Wenatchee.  Walk the Apple Capital Loop Trail (photo above) to the Pybus Public Market (photo right, 3 N. Worthen, 509-888-3900).  Browse the shops, do some wine tasting and then take the short walk up to Wenatchee Avenue to do some more wine tasting at the Chamber Room Tasting Bar (corner of Palouse & S. Wenatchee Ave) and at Stemilt Creek Winery (110 N. Wenatchee Ave., 509-665-3485).

Friday evening

Stop at McGlinns Public House (photo at left, 111 Orondo Ave, 509-663-9073) for dinner.  McGlinns is an old pub with a lot of character, a great menu and excellent food.  Take a nice walk back to the hotel.


Saturday morning

Breakfast and coffee at Caffe` Mela (photo below, 17 N Wenatchee Ave, 509-888-0374) located downtown Wenatchee, within walking distance of the hotel.

Saturday afternoon

Go down to Walla Walla Point Park (1351 Walla Walla Ave), a short drive or walk from the hotel, for some paddle boarding and kayaking.  There is a little inlet area from which you can start out and then venture out onto the Columbia  River and up to the confluence where the Wenatchee River runs into the Columbia.  On your way up the Columbia you will see the Horan Nature Area.  It is a beautiful area to do a little exploring in if you’d like.

Saturday evening

Go out to the Chateau Faire le Pont (1 Vinyard Way, 509-667-9463) for an early reserve wine tasting.  Enjoy dinner at this elegant winery with the music of Charlie Solburg, a guitar vocalist.


Sunday morning

Start your day at Taste Buds (212 5th St #A,  509-888-2783).  Enjoy their gourmet espresso and fresh baked scones.

Sunday afternoon

Take the short drive west on Hwy 2/97 to Cashmere and visit the Cashmere Cider Mill (5420 Woodring Canyon Rd‎, Cashmere, 509-782-3564).  Enjoy the orchards, tasty cider and home made treats.


If you can slip one more enjoyable outing into your weekend…

Walk the trails of Ohme Gardens (3327 Ohme Road, 509-662-5785). Designed as a private garden in the 1930s, the beautiful gardens and shady landscaping makes a cool oasis on a hot day.


SOURCE: Most of the stops on this itinerary were provided to us by the Wenatchee Valley Chamber of Commerce & Visitor Center.  We added Ohme Gardens as a bonus because we truly love the place.  This list, by the way, is not an advertisement. No one associated with WA-List was compensated for any inclusions on this list.

PHOTOS © Steve Campion.

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Hometown Hoedowns: Fairs in Washington State, 2013

Published by Steve Campion. Category: Arts, Culture & Media

Few places stimulate all five senses as much as county fairs.  They can be buffets of sounds, sights, smells, tastes, and things to touch.

Need a guide to finding them?  Here it is:  our third annual listing of all the fairs in Washington state.  This year’s list sports a state fair for the first time.  That’s right.  Washington finally has an officially designated state fair.  The well-known and bustling Puyallup Fair has earned the title.  It certainly attracts the crowds, the exhibitors, and the musical acts befitting a state fair.

No matter where you live, though, there will be a county or regional fair near you in July, August, or September.  Use our guide below to find the dates, then click the handy links to official websites for more details.  Once again we’ve included the often corny themes/slogans (if we could find them).  Which slogans do you like the best?

And try this for 2013: Find one nearby fair you’ve never visited and give it a spin.  You’ll support a Washington community and probably have a fun outing.

COUNTY AND STATE FAIRS IN WASHINGTON (2013 EDITION)

Dates Fair Location 2013 Theme (when available)
Jul 11-14 King County Fair Enumclaw
Jul 18-20 Castle Rock Fair Castle Rock Tradition Lives on at the Rock
Jul 18-20 Kalama Community Fair Kalama
Jul 23-27 West Valley Community Fair Wiley City (Yakima County)
Jul 25-28 Cowlitz County Fair Longview Feel the Excitement
Jul 26-28 Mason Area Fair & Rodeo Shelton
Jul 27 Silvana Fair Silvana (Skagit County)
Jul 31- Aug 4 Thurston County Fair Lacey Laughter and Ladybugs
Aug 2-4 Stanwood-Camano Community Fair Stanwood The Best Lil’ Fair in the West
Aug 2-11 Clark County Fair Ridgefield Summer’s Best Party!
Aug 7-10 Skagit County Fair Mount Vernon Hometown Hoedown
Aug 7-10 Yakima Valley Fair and Rodeo Grandview PIGnic in the County Park
Aug 7-11 Grays Harbor County Fair Elma Come to Where the Action Is
Aug 8-11 Omak Stampede and Suicide Race Omak
Aug 8-11 Pierce County Fair Graham The Greatest Show in Graham!
Aug 9-11 Jefferson County Fair Pt Townsend
Aug 10 Valley Community Fair Valley (Stevens County)
Aug 12-17 Northwest Washington Fair Lynden
Aug 13-17 Grant County Fair Moses Lake
Aug 13-18 Southwest Washington Fair Chehalis
Aug 14-17 San Juan County Fair Friday Harbor Footloose at the Fair
Aug 14-18 Skamania County Fair and Timber Carnival Stevenson Super Fair – Super Fun
Aug 15-17 Wahkiakum County Fair Skamokawa
Aug 15-18 Clallam County Fair Port Angeles Party ’til the Cows Come Home
Aug 15-18 Whidbey Island Fair Langley Blossom to Awesome!
Aug 15-18 Pend Oreille County Fair Cusick Treasure Chest of the County’s Best
Aug 20-24 Benton Franklin Fair and Rodeo Kennewick 65 and Crowin’
Aug 21-24 Pacific County Fair Menlo Quilts and Roses, Tails and Noses
Aug 21-25 Kitsap County Fair and Stampede Bremerton The Big County Fair
Aug 22-24 Lincoln County Fair Davenport
Aug 22-25 North Central Washington District Fair Waterville
Aug 22-25 Klickitat County Fair and Rodeo Goldendale Let’s Stirrup Some Mamories
Aug 22-25 Northeast Washington Fair Colville Strut Your Stuff
Aug 22-
Sept 2
Evergreen State Fair Monroe
Aug 23-25 Clayton Community Fair Clayton (Stevens County) Three Days of a Family Fun Fair
Lacamas Community Fair (no information yet) Roy
Aug 28-
Sep 1
Walla Walla Fair and Frontier Days Walla Walla
Aug 29-
Sep 1
Wheat Land Communities’ Fair Ritzville
Aug 29-
Sep 2
Kittitas County Fair Ellensburg Let the Good Times Roll!
Aug 30-
Sep 1
Ferry County Fair Republic 70 Years of Ferry County Treasures
Sep 5-8 Chelan County Fair Cashmere Country Pride is County Wide
Sep 5-8 Palouse Empire Fair Colfax
Columbia County Fair (no information yet) Dayton
Sep 6-15 Spokane Interstate Fair Spokane Valley Experience the Ride
Sep 6-22 Washington State Fair (“The Puyallup Fair”) Puyallup It’s Time Washington Had a State Fair
Sep 8-11 Okanogan County Fair Okanogan
Sep 11-14 Adams County Fair Othello Harvest Ways and Fair Days
Sep 13-15 Garfield County Fair Pomeroy Everything a County Fair Should Be
Sep 20-22 Southeast Spokane County Fair Rockford All Roads Lead to the Fair
Sep 20-29 Central Washington State Fair Yakima Taste the Fun!

SOURCES: Many county websites and county fair websites.

PHOTO at the Washington State Fair © Steve Campion

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City Hall on Main Street

Published by Steve Campion. Category: Politics & Government

Most towns have a Main Street.  It’s The Strip; the central drag; the center of activity.  Sometimes it goes by a different name but whether it’s Main Street, Front Street, First Avenue, or Commerce, it represents “downtown” to the residents.

In today’s list we look — out of trivial curiosity more than anything — at some of the Washington towns boasting an actual street called Main.  Many government offices anchor themselves on Main to be close to the action and accessible to the business core.  How many do that?  In Washington there are 36 city or town halls on Main.  Five county courthouses are there.  It is easily the most common address for government.

For the fun of it we’ve gathered those 41 civic addresses on Main — including two on Main Avenues.  And since alphabetical order seems mundane on a list that’s kind of silly to begin with, we’ve sorted the addresses by “house” number as if all the offices were on one imaginary Main Street you might walk down.

An additional trivial note: Cathlamet is the only town in Washington with both a city hall and a county courthouse on its Main Street.

And a trivial commentary: Many streets across this land are named for states, but sadly all the Main Streets pretty much eliminate the use of Maine Streets.  But we Washingtonians have almost the same problem.  Most of the Washington Streets, Avenues, and Boulevards in this country refer to the president rather than the state.  You’re more likely see a Washington next to an Adams (president) than an Oregon (state).  Bummer.

CITY HALLS & TOWN HALLS & COUNTY COURTHOUSES ON MAIN STREET

STREET ADDRESS TOWN/CITY (or COUNTY)
 25 West Main Auburn
26 Main Street Mansfield
64 Main Street Wahkiakum County in Cathlamet
100 Main Street Cathlamet
 100 North Main Street White Salmon
 102 Main Street Granger
 107 South Main La Crosse
110 North Main Street Bucoda
 111 West Main Street Everson
 111 South Main Pe Ell
 112 North Main Street Montesano
 East 120 Main Palouse
 147 Main Street Waitsburg
 165 South Main Street Washtucna
 200 Main Street Starbuck
202 West Main Street Elma
East 203 Main Street Farmington
204 East Main Street Oakville
 207 North Main Street Kittitas
211 Main Avenue North North Bend
 216 East Main Avenue Ritzville
 218 East Main Street Fairfield
 219 Main Conconully
 250 Main Morton
305 Main Street Mabton
315 West Main Street Walla Walla County in Walla Walla
 319 Main Street Sultan
341 East Main Street Columbia County in Dayton
400 North Main Street Whitman County in Colfax
 500 East Main Street Othello
 West 501 Main Coulee City
789 Main Street Garfield County in Pomeroy
 806 West Main Monroe
 933 Main Street Buckley
 1812 Main Street Lake Stevens
 2095 Main Street Ferndale
6000 Main Street Southwest Lakewood
 8405 South Main Lyman
 15535 Main Street Northeast Duvall
 15728 Main Street Mill Creek
 45672 Main Street Concrete

PHOTO of Lakewood City on Main Street © Steve Campion.

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3 Days and 2 Nights in Port Townsend

Published by Steve Campion. Category: Counties & Towns

Want a quick weekend getaway without the fuss of airports or costs of rental cars?  Travel locally. You can relax, recharge, and have plenty of fun. One place you may want to consider is Port Townsend on the northwest corner of the Olympic Peninsula.

We asked someone who knows Port Townsend to imagine Three Days and Two Nights for a family in her town.  Karen Anderson, manager of the Port Townsend Visitor Information Center, took up our challenge and designed the itinerary below.  It mixes some good food, entertainment, kid fun, and outdoor experiences.  There are plenty of other places to go and things to do in Port Townsend, of course, but Anderson’s list shows off some of the best the city offers without running anyone ragged.  There’s one bit of advice we’d like to add to her list, though:  Bring a camera!  Port Townsend and its waterfront are beautiful.

We call this series Three Days and Two Nights.  We want to share sample itineraries for weekend vacations in various Washington locations.  Our intent isn’t to burden readers with dozens of places to go in a crazy 60-hour frenzy.  On the contrary.  We want to keep things simple by suggesting a realistic experience — one that you might quickly visualize in your mind before grabbing a calendar to start making plans. Travel locally and explore the Northwest. You can squeeze a lot of memories into a 3 day weekend.

THREE DAYS AND TWO NIGHTS IN PORT TOWNSEND, WASHINGTON


Friday afternoon

Grab a picnic from Getables (810 Water St, 360-385-5560) and eat and play at Pope Marine Park (Madison St & Water St) downtown. Then window shop along Water Street as the evening comes on.

Friday evening

See a live play or concert at Key City Public Theatre (419 Washington St, 360-385-5278).  Finish up the day with ice cream at Elevated Ice Cream (631 Water St, 360-385-1156).


Saturday morning

Get breakfast at the Salmon Cart in the Uptown Farmers’ Market (Tyler St. between Lawrence and Clay).

Saturday afternoon

Touch the starfish at the Port Townsend Marine Science Center (532 Battery Way, 360-385-5582) at Fort Worden.  Explore the old military batteries near the Point Wilson Lighthouse (Harbor Defense Way).  Be sure to take a flashlight!

Saturday evening

Eat dinner at Waterfront Pizza (951 Water St, 360-385-6629).


Sunday morning

Brunch at Hudson Point Cafe (130 Hudson St, 379-0592).  Then check out tide pools behind the Northwest Maritime Center (431 Water St, 360-385-3628).

Sunday afternoon

Rent kayaks from the Point Hudson Marina (103 Hudson St, 385-2828) for a paddle around the city docks.


And on your way out of town

Stop off at the Chimacum Farmer’s Market (Highway 19 & Chimacum Road & Center Road) for a bushel of fresh local produce to take home.


SOURCE: Karen Anderson, manager of the Port Townsend Visitor Information Center, selected all the activities on this sample weekend itinerary.  In our initial discussion about this list, WA-List editors suggested a few personal favorites from our past experiences, but happily yielded the final choices to Ms. Anderson.  We were pleased to see some of our choices made her list. This list, by the way, is not an advertisement. No one associated with WA-List was compensated for any inclusions on this list.

PHOTOS:

  • Point Wilson Light © Steve Campion.
  • Elevated Ice Cream: That’s Janette Force, Director, Port Townsend Film Festival
    and her son, Sam. Photo by Jan Halliday.
  • Kayakers on Port Townsend Bay © Steve Campion.
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Historic Theaters, Part 2: Eastern Washington

Published by Steve Campion. Category: Buildings & Other Structures

Theaters are wonderful examples of the evolving nature of contemporary life.  New structures rise to accommodate today’s needs and technology, while surviving older buildings offer glimpses of a city’s character in earlier eras.  Few public spaces are — at the same time — as intimately welcoming and elaborately decorated as twentieth century theaters.  They were built as showplaces but were often showy places themselves.  The earliest were built exclusively for live performances, but later theaters accommodated audiences in the movie era.  In this age of cinemas and multiplexes, precious few grand architectural examples of yesteryear remain in use, but those few are still worth visiting.

Earlier this year we asked Susan Johnson to help us identify some surviving gems from the golden age of historic theaters in Washington.  She is an architectural historian with Artifacts Consulting, Inc. and was a contributing author to the Washington State Historic Theaters Survey and Physical Needs Assessment (2008).

Johnson not only listed a few dozen theaters that she considered personal favorites, but was kind enough to write a few notes for each: things to know, things to look for.  Her complete list includes theaters from all over Washington, but she consented to our request to publish it in two parts.  Today’s installment focuses on eastern Washington and lists the theaters in alphabetical order.  We showcased her favorite western Washington theaters in February.

SUSAN JOHNSON’S FAVORITE HISTORIC THEATERS IN WASHINGTON
Part 2: Eastern Washington

  • American/Liberty (54 East Main Street, Walla Walla)  Opened as a theater in 1917, this site appears on this list for its surviving exterior only.  The interior is no longer a theater.  It was remodeled as an extension of a department store in 1990.
  • Bing Crosby (901 W Sprague Avenue, Spokane)  Another important piece of theater history for Washington.  It was designed by E.W. Houghton, the same architect who created the Moore in Seattle and the Liberty in Wenatchee.  It opened in 1915 as the Clemmer Theater.  It was known over the years as the State and the Met, but earned its current name in 2006.  Bing Crosby, by the way, was hired in the early days of the Clemmer to entertain between movies. (sign, above; exterior, below)

  • Capitol (19 South 3rd Street,Yakima) Amazing restoration was done to this 1920 theater after it was heavily damaged by fire in 1975. Designed by B. Marcus Priteca, the Capitol’s auditorium is similar to the Pantages in Tacoma (which was also by Priteca and opened in 1918).
  • Vue Dale Drive-In (1546 South Wenatchee Avenue, Wenatchee)  This may be closed now but it was one of the last drive-ins in Washington.
  • Fox (1001 West Sprague Avenue, Spokane)  I can’t do the Fox justice in a few lines. It’s fabulous. It is Hollywood, Art Deco, and the golden age of theaters. Recently restored, the theater now shimmers and
    sparkles again. Get ready for some photo ops. Robert Reamer designed the Fox – the same architect who designed the Old Faithful Inn at Yellowstone National Park, the 5th Ave Theater in Seattle, and the Mt. Baker Theater in Bellingham.  Spokane hosted Will Rogers, Janet Gaynor, and child star Rose Marie, for the theater’s grand opening in 1931. (exterior and interior, below)
  • Liberty (11 South Mission Street, Wenatchee) Another E. W. Houghton design, from 1920. The old advertising screen is still rolled up behind the stage curtains. The Liberty has been a performing arts stage, a cinema, and was divided into multiple auditoriums. The theater has been altered but has a great story of surviving the changing times.
  • New Ritz (107 East Main Avenue, Ritzville) This theater makes me imagine what Ritzville was like in the 1930s with a little American Graffiti mixed in. It was built in 1937 and is relatively intact today. (exterior, below)

  • Nifty (201 Locust, Waterville) Built in 1919, the Nifty still has remnants of its vaudeville origins. It is a unique survivor of days past in eastern Washington. The interior has more surprises.  I can’t ruin them here.  Check ahead for open hours/events. (interior, below)

  • Omak Cinema (108 North Main Street, Omak)  Built in 1937 as a cinema and it is still operating as such. There is some intact Art Deco embellishment on the interior.
  • Roxy (118 South Washington Avenue, Newport)  There are unique, 1950s-era materials in the lobby and auditorium.  The exterior may be rather plain but the inside is worth a visit – and they claim the best popcorn around. (interior, below)

  • Ruby (135 E Woodin Avenue, Chelan) Built in 1913, the Ruby still has a rare horseshoe-shaped balcony.  The building is charming inside and out. (interior, below)

  • Sunset (102 North Columbia Avenue, Connell)  Built in 1952 by August Aubert, this is still a small town, single-screener. It’s so intact, even the original popcorn machine is still there. It is a wonderful example of a mid-century, modern-style theater (exterior and interior, below).
  • Tekoa Empire (126 South Crosby Street, Tekoa)  Nice, intact example of a neighborhood or small town one-screener.  It was built in 1940, with Art Deco influences.

SOURCE: Thanks to Susan Johnson for her expertise in selecting her favorite theaters, noting some of their best aspects, and writing about them for us.

PHOTOS:  Exterior images of the Bing Crosby, Fox, and Ritz © Steve Campion.  The Nifty, Roxy, Ruby, and Sunset  images are courtesy of Susan Johnson.  The Fox interior photo by Whitney Cox appears here courtesy of  The Fox Theatre.

P.S.  Most of these venues spell it theatre.  It’s all good.

See also Part 1: Historic Theaters of Western Washington!

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Scoop’s Landslides

Published by Steve Campion. Category: Politics & Government

One of the most popular politicians Washington ever produced was Henry M. “Scoop” Jackson, the so-called Senator from Boeing.  He garnered more votes during his long career in the other Washington than anyone in state history before him.

Jackson was born in Everett on May 31, 1912.  He was only 28 years old when he started his congressional career in 1940, winning election as a representative from his home district.  After six terms in the House, Democrat Jackson defeated incumbent Republican Senator Harry P. Cain in 1952, and was off on an unbroken string of landslides.  He won 82% of the ballots in 1970, and topped one million votes received six years later.  Even as the state population grew and vote totals increased, no challenger ever won as many votes in opposition to Jackson as Cain had done in that first election.

On the national level, Jackson became a leading figure in the Senate and was outspoken in international affairs.  He was even considered by many pundits as the early favorite for the 1976 Democratic presidential nomination, but his run stalled when former Georgia governor Jimmy Carter emerged as the darkest of horses in that spring’s primary season.  He died in Everett 8 months into his 6th term as senator on Sep 1, 1983.  He was remembered for his efforts to keep America strong economically and geopolitically.  He was also known for bipartisan cooperation. President Ronald Reagan eulogized him as “one of the greatest lawmakers of our century.”

SENATOR HENRY M. JACKSON’S 4,962,537 VOTES TO THE U.S. SENATE

Year Votes for
Jackson (D)
% Contender (R) Votes for
contender
%
1952 595,288 56 Harry P. Cain 460,884 44
1958  597,040 67 Bill Bantz 278,271 31
1964 875,950 72 Lloyd J. Andrews 337,138 28
1970 879,385 82 Charles W. Elicker 170,790 16
1976 1,071,219 75 George M. Brown 361,546 25
1982 943,655 69 Doug Jewett 332,273 24

PHOTO of a 1982 Scoop Jackson yard sign © Steve Campion.
PHOTO of Sen. Jackson in the public domain.

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Concrete ribbons: Washington’s longest highways

Published by Steve Campion. Category: Transportation

Summer’s coming.  Road trip!  Pack your car, pick a highway, and see the state.

Which highway?  Suppose you wanted to tackle one road from start to finish and explore it thoroughly.  Which Washington highway would keep you busy for the greatest distance?  State Route 20 and US 12 both span the state west to east for more than 400 meandering miles.  You could certainly cover that distance in a single day, but most veteran road-trippers we know eschew speed to enjoy the places and people they discover along the way.  That’s the fun of blue highways.*

We sought out the longest Washington highways — blue or otherwise — and found 21 that stretch 75 miles or more.  (We also included a 22nd road, State Route 231, which falls only 150 feet short of 75 miles!)  Appended to each listing are any cities or towns among Washington’s 100 most populous that you would encounter en route — the largest city among them in bold type.  It’s not surprising that most of the largest cities in the state are connected to one or more of these highways.

But don’t limit your stops to those larger cities if you’re road-tripping.  Spend some time in the small towns, too.  Get lunch in a local cafe, window shop on main street, and get caught up in at least one conversation.  Then hit the road again.  There are many more miles to these highways.

LONGEST HIGHWAYS IN WASHINGTON STATE

Highway Miles From To Cities (in WA’s Top 100) en route
  1. SR 20 436.13 Port Discovery Newport (Idaho border) Port Townsend, Oak Harbor, Anacortes, Burlington, Sedro-Woolley
  2. US 12 430.92 Aberdeen Clarkston (Idaho border) Aberdeen, Centralia, Chehalis, Yakima, Sunnyside, Grandview, Richland, Pasco, Walla Walla, Clarkston
  3. US 101 365.56 Megler
(Oregon border)
Olympia Aberdeen, Hoquiam, Port Angeles, Shelton, Olympia, Tumwater
  4. US 2 326.36 Everett Newport (Idaho border) Everett, Snohomish, Monroe, Wenatchee, Spokane
  5. US 97 321.52 Maryhill (Oregon border) Oroville (Canada border) Toppenish, Yakima, Ellensburg, Wenatchee
  6. I-90 297.51 Seattle Liberty Lake
(Idaho border)
Seattle, Mercer Island, Bellevue, Sammamish, Issaquah, Ellensburg, Moses Lake, Spokane, Spokane Valley, Liberty Lake
  7. I-5 276.62 Vancouver
(Oregon border)
Blaine
(Canada border)
Vancouver, Kelso, Chehalis, Centralia, Tumwater, Olympia, Lacey, DuPont, Lakewood, Tacoma, Fife, Federal Way, Des Moines, SeaTac, Tukwila, Seattle, Shoreline, Mountlake Terrace, Lynnwood, Everett, Marysville, Mount Vernon, Burlington, Ferndale, Bellingham
  8. US 395 275.00 Plymouth (Oregon border) Laurier (Canada border) Kennewick, Pasco, Spokane
  9. SR 21 191.29 Kahlotus Danville
10. SR 14 180.66 Vancouver Plymouth Vancouver, Camas, Washougal
11. SR 17 136.67 Mesa Fort Okanogan Othello, Moses Lake
12. SR 28 135.25 East Wenatchee Davenport East Wenatchee, Quincy, Ephrata
13. SR 26 133.61 Vantage Colfax Othello
14. I-82 132.57 Plymouth (Oregon border) Ellensburg Grandview, Sunnyside, Yakima, Ellensburg
15. SR 25 121.17 Davenport Frontier (Canada border)
16. SR 410 107.44 Puyallup west of Naches Puyallup, Sumner, Bonney Lake, Enumclaw
17. SR 9   97.43 Woodinville Sumas (Canada border) Woodinville, Snohomish, Lake Stevens, Arlington, Sedro-Woolley
18. US 195   93.37 Uniontown (Idaho border) Spokane Pullman, Spokane
19. SR 27   90.00 Pullman Spokane Valley Pullman, Spokane Valley
20. SR 24   79.23 Yakima Othello Yakima, Othello
21. SR 155   78.35 Fordair/Dry Falls Omak
22. SR 231   74.97 north of Sprague south of Chewelah

*Blue highway is the name given to the less-traveled roads of America by author William Least Heat-Moon in the book Blue Highways.  Unlike the major interstates, they appeared on his maps in blue.  In our experience they show the most authentic America.  People drive by on interstates, but live on blue highways,

PHOTO of State Route 21 south of Wilbur © Steve Campion.

SOURCE: Highway lengths were confirmed by the GIS and Roadway Data Office of the Washington State Department of Transportation.

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The Dry Days

Published by Steve Campion. Category: Weather

Are you planning a wedding or outdoor event in the Puget Sound area this summer?  Do you want to know which days are the best bets for a rain-free event?  Today we rank the 25 driest days in Seattle, based on analysis of historic weather records going back to Jan. 1, 1893.

The tallies of dry days were originally published by the US Weather Service in 1997, but have been kept up-to-date by Scott Sistek, meteorologist at KOMO-TV and KOMOnews.com, who pushed the stats into their 121st year.  We sorted through the data for the top 25 below.

We also noticed a happy statistical fact in the data.  Beginning April 20, every day for the next six months has a better than 50% chance of being free of precipitation.  That’s not a generalization.  Going back to 1893, every individual day between April 20 and October 28 has recorded more dry days than wet.  We put together the accompanying calendar chart to visualize that Mostly Dry season (orange).  The red subset on the calendar represents the driest of the dry in which each day has a better than 75% no-rain history.  Is it any wonder that Seafair weekend is scheduled the first weekend of August?  “They’ve done their homework!” Sistek said.

The blue, orange, and red portions on the chart are streaks of consistent wet or dry histories.  The two portions of white are days of inconsistency.  The two yellow dots?  Those are the historically driest days of all: July 30 and August 4.  They have been wet only nine times each in the last 120 years.

THE MOST CONSISTENTLY RAIN-FREE DAYS IN SEATTLE

RANK DAY(S) TIMES IT RAINED
SINCE 1893

1.


July 30
August 4


9


3.


August 1


10


4.


July 20
July 21
July 24
July 27
July 28
July 29
August 8


11


11.


July 22
July 31


12


13.


July 18
July 23
August 2
August 10
August 11


13


18.


August 9
August 12


14


20.


July 19
August 3
August 7


15


23.


July 17
July 25
July 26
Aug 20


16

SOURCE: The National Weather Service originally tabulated the data in 1997, but meteorologist Scott Sistek (KOMO-TV and KOMOnews.com) has maintained and updated it since then.  He also kindly shared the data (http://www.komonews.com/weather/faq/4308877.html) we used to find the right days and discover the dry and wet seasons.

CHART: Steve Campion

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