A river run to the River Fest

Event celebrates 50th anniversary of Wilderness Act with art show

At first glimpse

At first glimpse

Sequim’s mighty river takes center stage again this weekend for the 15th annual Dungeness River Festival.

A few thousand people are expected for festivities Sept. 26-27 including nearly 1,000 grade school children from Sequim private and public schools on Friday field trips.

Lyn Muench, who helped start the festival 20 years ago, said it’s grown a little bit each year from its first year that was only a one-day event.

“It’s a wonderful chance for three things – for us to bring a lot of children to the (Dungeness River Audubon Center), it’s a chance for most of the natural resource-oriented organizations to come together and it’s a chance to share with the community this wonderful park and all the great things our contributors do,” she said. “Plus it’s always been a combination of nature-oriented education, fun and music.”

The free festivities run 10 a.m.-4 p.m. at Railroad Bridge Park and the Dungeness River Audubon Center with live music, bird walks, exhibitors and lectures happening throughout Friday and Saturday.

The Olympic Driftwood Sculptors also hold its sixth annual show in the center from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

This year, the festival brings back the “What Is Wilderness” student art sponsored by the U.S. Forest Service to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the passage of the Wilderness Act.

Many other favorites return such as the Animal Olympics, the chance to make your own fish print on a T-shirt, to hold a geoduck clam, learn about salmon migration, septic tanks and more including lectures with Ken Wiersema leading a walk and discussion about the railroad bridge.

Each exhibitor offers interactive nature exhibits and activities, too.

Muench said two years ago they began adding “green” organizations as exhibitors because the center’s mission “goes hand-in-hand” with their messages. Railroader Steve Hauff leads a discussion on railroads around the world, which Muench said segues into next year’s theme celebrating the Railroad Bridge turning 100.

While the themes change annually, Muench said the center’s mission remains the same: “to inspire understanding, enjoyment and stewardship of the Olympic Peninsula’s unique natural and cultural resources, with emphasis on birds, rivers, fish and people.”

“We hope for more (understanding) for the river and its surroundings,” she said.

Powell Jones, executive director of the Dungeness River Audubon Center, said it’s one part looking for stakeholders in the river while raising awareness to preserve it.

“We live on a pretty unique river,” he said.

For more information on Call 681-4076 or visit DungenessRiverCenter.org.

 

The Dungeness River Festival

When: 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Friday-Saturday, Sept. 26-27,

Where: Railroad Bridge Park, 2151 W. Hendrickson Road

Both Friday and Saturday: Food, nature activities and exhibits available 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

Friday, Sept. 26, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

• 10:30 a.m. and noon, Sound Waves (Five Acre School)

• 11 a.m., River Walk, Bob Boekelheide. Meet at Information Table

• 2:30-4 p.m., “Trains around the World” with Steve Hauff touring railroads around the globe.

Saturday, Sept. 27, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

• 10 a.m., Jamestown S’Klallam drummers, singers’ welcome ceremony

• Noon, Olympic Peninsula Ukulele Strummers

• 1-2:30 p.m., Aspire Dance Academy

• 1 p.m., River Walk

• 2 p.m., How They Built the Bridge with Ken Wiersema, meet at the Information Table

• 2:30 p.m., Port Angeles Community Drum Circle

Saturday-Sunday, Sept. 27-28, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

• Olympic Driftwood Sculptors’ Sixth Anniversary Art Show

 

 

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