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Chamber of Commerce turns 80


Bill Littlejohn, president of the Sequim-Dungeness Valley Chamber of Commerce board, cuts a commemorative cake, kicking off the business organization’s 80th year. In back, from left, are Amanda Bacon, Vickie Maples, chamber executive director, and speaker Doug McInnes. Sequim Gazette photo by Patricia Morrison Coate

Toasts and laughter abounded at the Sequim-Dungeness Valley Chamber of Commerce luncheon on March 23 as the organization celebrated its 80th anniversary. Doug McInnes, an 80-year-old Sequim historian

and humorist, regaled the crowd at the SunLand Golf and Country Club with tidbits on the town's history and one-liner quips.

The Sequim Chamber of Commerce was incorporated on March 3, 1930.

McInnes noted nuggets of the city's history along with national events. For example:

_ In the 1930s, the chamber held fundraising dinners for 60 cents a ticket, the first "Where Water Is Wealth Sign" appeared on the east end of town and the population was 534.

_ Two Sequim sailors died at Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941 - 58 Clallam County men had died by World War II's end.

_ The first self-propelled Irrigation Festival float arrived in 1949.

_ In the early 1950s, Sequim had a population of 1,125, a traffic light and house numbers.

_ In the late 1950s, the area had 13,000 dairy cows. In 1966, where McInnes concluded his journey, Sequim had grown to 1,325 residents.

Chamber board president Bill Littlejohn cut a cake featuring the chamber's logo, and toasts were drunk all around.

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