Saturday, October 1, 2011

Issaquah Salmon Days 2011

I went to the Issaquah Salmon Days today.  The city of Issaquah has a fine salmon hatchery, and though people can gather around this time of year in general and watch the salmon returning from the Pacific, they tend to pick the first weekend of October for a street festival.  You can shop at the crafts booths, eat incredibly calorie-rich treats at the food booths, watch obnoxious balloons with salmon motifs, or actually watch the salmon swimming up Issaquah Creek. 

  This crowded bridge offers the best view 

The dark shapes are salmon fighting their way upstream
Mostly chinook this time of year, the coho come later 

The salmon have a ladder they can use to gradually make their way to the hatchery, or they can try doing it the hard way. 

I’m the fittest! 

The fish ladder has large windows along the way, like an aquarium.  This is an ideal way to show children what fish are really like, as opposed to their thinking of them as fish sticks on a tray. 

Glass windows in the concrete

Beyond the boundary of the festival was the big salmon BBQ, which could easily be spotted by the cloud of smoke it was raising.  The line looked so long, I had some beef on a stick from an uncrowded street booth instead.  Then I went to the main food area and had a pork skewer with some fried rice and chow mein, then a gigantic strawberry crepe.  Excessive?  Naw. 

My mileage there counts as research, since my vampire satire features a couple scenes at the festival.  Look at the image below.  Then, if my novel ever gets published, when you come across a certain scene it’ll seem familiar to you, and you won’t even know why. 

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I, too, find it subtly disturbing that though the festival is in honor and celebration of the truly awe-inspiring return of the salmon to lay their eggs and die, the average Salmon Days attender has no idea what awaits him if only he would take the food away from his mouth, stick his head over the railing of the bridge, and marvel at the creature for whom all the fuss is about. Sara


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