People power: Citizens took the initiative in historic 2017, fighting development running for office

  • Thursday, December 28, 2017 7:30am
  • News

As an eventful 2017 draws to a close, we looked back over a landmark year of citizens taking action, to preserve open spaces, protect the environment and hold local governing bodies accountable for the same responsibilities. From crowdfunded parks projects to an unprecedented level of opposition in local elections, the citizens of our Valley have been doing their part to make this place a home for all of us.

We hope you enjoy this look back at some of the highlights of 2017.

JANUARY

• High school work requires traffic changes, Jan. 4: Work on the new Mount Si High School construction has progressed to the point that the school’s main parking lot will be closed when school restarts after the holiday break. By its projected completion date of 2019, the school will have a 2,300 student capacity, a new gymnasium, new performing arts center and a separate freshman wing.

• North Bend film student Rachel Mallasch debuts new short film at North Bend Theatre, Jan. 4: Mount Si High School graduate and Azusa Pacific film student Rachel Mallasch presented her film production class’s short film “Keegan the Alien” on the big screen on New Year’s Eve.

• Lost on a trail, missing Boxer finds help after four rough days, Jan. 11:

Yogi, the beloved pet of Mike and Cindy Gaudio, made it home to his family after going missing on a Dec. 30 hike to Mailbox Peak. The family and friends searched the area for days with no luck, until the 6-year-old boxer wandered into the North Bend Fire Training Academy, tired and hungry but with only minor injuries. “If he could talk, man, what a story he might tell!” says Cindy Gaudio.

• Paul Graves officially sworn into Legislature, Jan. 11: Newly elected Fall City legislator Paul Graves took the oath of office Jan. 9 at the start of what would turn out to be an extended legislative session. He was elected to the House of Representatives last November.

• Snoqualmie’s new police chief officially checks in, Jan. 18:

Perry Phipps, the new chief of police in Snoqualmie, was sworn into office Jan. 10. He comes to the city with more than 30 years of experience in law enforcement, in a variety of roles including canine, gang unit and SWAT, and developed a police outreach program for at-risk youth.

• North Bend fields not ready for spring sports, Jan. 18:

Groundwater issues at the site of a proposed 12-acre athletic complex have delayed the project and left Mount Si High School’s baseball and softball teams searching for practice fields for the upcoming season. The new complex, a project of Bendigo Properties, LLC, will have four outdoor combination (soccer and baseball/softball) fields and 12 indoor basketball courts with parking for about 140 cars, when completed.

• Education funding is top priority for Governor Inslee, Jan. 25: Washington Governor Jay Inslee met with Sound Publishing and Valley Record staff on Inauguration Day, to discuss the 2017 legislative session and funding education through his proposed $5 billion in new taxes. “We know we can do great things for our kids if we put the resources that are adequate into it,” he said. “I believe this is a historic opportunity.”

• Snoqualmie hires first full-time, female firefighter, Jan 25: Theresa Tozier has joined the ranks of the Snoqualmie Fire Department, the first full-time female firefighter in the department. Her hire was supported by voters who approved Snoqualmie’s public safety levy in the November, 2016 election, which also will fund two new police officers.

FEBRUARY

• Citizens ask Reichert to oppose travel ban, Feb. 8: In response to the Jan. 27 executive order signed by President Donald Trump blocking refugees and visitors from seven predominantly Muslim countries from entering the U.S., nine residents from Issaquah, Sammamish and North Bend gathered at the office of Congressman Dave Reichert on Tuesday, Jan. 31. They called on him to oppose the executive order.

• Hospital considers affiliation or merger, again, Feb. 8: The Snoqualmie Valley Hospital is in the process of making some big changes. The board and staff have reached out to consulting firms to help the organization pursue a possible affiliation, merger, or sale to a larger health care system.

• Snoqualmie woman shares her story with Oprah, Feb. 8:

Long-time Snoqualmie resident Jennifer Morin was flown to California recently to share her Weight Watchers success story and to meet and talk one-on-one with media star Oprah Winfrey.

• Beating cancer: Relay chairperson Bev Jorgensen’s road to cancer recovery leads straight to 2017 Relay for Life event, Feb. 15:

In the past year, Bev Jorgensen of North Bend has taken an eventful journey, accompanied by many from the Upper Valley community. Last January, she helped kick off the 15th season of the Snoqualmie Valley Relay for Life, and in February, she was among several Relay for Life committee members to accept the city of North Bend’s Organization of the Year award. Leading up to the Relay in July, she had fundraisers, team captains meetings and a survivors lunch to make happen, then finally, the big event, held July 9 at Tollgate Farm Park.

• Valley residents preserve memorial for abandoned infant, Feb. 22: After three years, Valley residents are working harder than ever to preserve the memorial of a newborn child found dead on SE North Bend Way in 2014. Consistent vandalism to the memorial site has citizens motivated to keep preserving the memory of the lost life.

• Snoqualmie man given city award for river rescue: Snoqualmie City Council presents Life-Saving Award to José Nolasco, Feb. 22:

A Snoqualmie man, José Nolasco, was recognized for his quick response to help Dorothy Schaan, who’d fallen into Coal Creek in Snoqualmie Jan. 18. Nolasco had been outside working on a house when he heard Schaan’s calls for help and stepped into the river to grab her and pull her out.

MARCH

• Snoqualmie to examine event returns in 2017, March 1:

The city of Snoqualmie wants to find out how effective its public events are and has asked contract events coordinator Lizzy Billington to provide more frequent and detailed reports on the events the city hosts. “We needed a way to measure the event as far as success, number of participants, residents satisfied with the events we offer, get a sense of return on investment, and talk to businesses that may be impacted,” said City Administrator Bob Larson.

• Tribe begins talks with community on second roundabout, March 1: The Snoqualmie Tribe has begun work on a new gas station next to the Snoqualmie Casino, and begun designing a second roundabout, just a few hundred feet down North Bend Way from the casino entrance roundabout. The roundabout has raised concerns for the residents of the nearby deadend street, 372nd Avenue Southeast.

• Historic Snoqualmie bank building owners lease space to local chef, March 1:

Chef Kristen Schumacher, owner of Heirloom Cookshop, will be opening shop in the former Snoqualmie Valley Chamber of Commerce building on the corner of River and Falls Avenue this year. She is leasing the building from Flying Pie Pizzeria, which purchased the property from the city of Snoqualmie in October 2016.

• Cities respond to Monday snowstorm, March 8: Without much warning the Upper Snoqualmie Valley was quickly buried in snow the evening of Monday, Feb. 27. The snow, falling all day, began to stick to the roads just in time for the evening commute on Snoqualmie Parkway. Disabled cars closed the parkway and a shortage of working snowplows in Snoqualmie didn’t help matters. Snow removal crews worked well into the night in both Snoqualmie and North Bend to clear the roads for the next day’s commuters.

• Lower Valley cities agree to take a welcoming stance for all residents, March 8: Both Carnation and Duvall city councils are considering citizen proposals to declare themselves as Welcoming Cities, free of discrimination. Duvall adopted a resolution to that effect after reviewing the risks to the city based on a Jan. 25 executive order to cut federal funding to “sanctuary jurisdictions,” and Carnation is expected to vote on a similar resolution at its next meeting.

• National Football Foundation honors Mount Si athletes, March 8:

Two Mount Si High School football players, Jack Weidenbach and Max Bonda, were honored by the National Football Foundation at its 51st Annual Scholar-Athlete Awards Banquet Sunday, Feb. 26, at Century Link Stadium in Seattle.

APRIL

• Medical emergency re-enacted at Cascade Golf Course helped patient with healing, April 5: Mariella Whitney didn’t remember much after suffering a double aneurysm at Cascade Golf Course last fall, but thanks to the help of Tracy Cantrell, a manager at the course’s general store, she has made a full recovery and is now being featured in a reenactment of the event. On Thursday, March 23, Whitney and Cantrell were reunited at Cascade Golf Course, where they recreated the events of that fall day for a reenactment video produced by Overlake Hospital.

• Snoqualmie City Councilman, Charles Peterson, leaves a legacy of love for his community, April 12:

Charles S. Peterson, 79, was not exactly a founding father of the 113-year-old city of Snoqualmie, but in his long career serving the city as Mayor, Councilman, and Planning Commissioner, he definitely shaped the community that Snoqualmie, and the whole Upper Valley, is today. “Snoqualmie lost its most dedicated and longest-serving public official this week,” said Mayor Matt Larson, adding that Peterson’s tenure with the city happened at the times his leadership was most needed. “His experience and wisdom gave Charles the ability to provide an oft-needed bridge between old and new Snoqualmie. He was a strong and effective advocate for historic downtown, but he also quickly adapted to evolving priorities and consistently fought for the principal that we are ‘one community.’”

• North Bend artist creates mural for Opstad Elementary, April 19: With the help and generosity from the community around her, North Bend artist Kristin Lockwood is working on a year-long project to create a 25-foot mural for Opstad Elementary School in North Bend.

• Former Snoqualmie Police Chief leaves Valley to serve as police chief in Atherton, Calif., April 26: Former Snoqualmie Police Chief Steve McCulley is leaving the Valley to serve a California community. McCulley, who retired from the Snoqualmie Police Department last June, will become the city of Atherton’s new police chief by May 17. He was the Snoqualmie Police Chief from July 2012 until June of last year.

MAY

• County investigates armed robbery Friday at Cascade Golf Course, May 3:

King County Sheriff’s deputies are investigating the robbery of the Cascade Golf Course general store in North Bend over the weekend. The general store was robbed at 7:48 p.m. on Friday, April 28, by a thief who claimed to be armed. The suspect was described as a tall, white man, who had covered his face with sunglasses and a scarf. He reportedly entered the store, walked up to counter where employee Lisa Stephens was working and demanded all the money in the register. He told Stephens he had a gun, but Stephens did not see a weapon. The man escaped and police continued to search for him.

• Golfers takes 4th at Suncadia, defeat Skyline on Senior Night, May 3: A hailstorm and a 233-256 win over rival Skyline made the Mount Si High School girls golf team’s Senior Night, Thursday, April 27, memorable. It also gave the team a 5-1 season record as the girls head into their final week of regular-season play. Currently in KingCo, Kat Hodgson is ranked second, closely trailing Issaquah’s Jeemin Nam, in first. The KingCo Medalist Tournament is Monday, May 8, followed on May 9 by the District 2 contest to qualify for one of the 11 berths to the state tournament.

•Residents opposed to Snoqualmie hotel project claim city violated code, May 10: A group of Snoqualmie citizens are opposing a hotel development project on the corner of SE Center Street and the Snoqualmie Parkway. They protested the project Monday, after discovering the city did not meet its own requirements for notifying residents — those within a 500-foot radius of the project — that a public hearing was scheduled.

• Twin Peaks event brings out hundreds for scavenger hunt and movie showing, May 17: More than 400 people came to Snoqualmie on Saturday, May 13, for the city’s official “Twin Peaks” community event celebrating the return of the television show (season three debuts on Showtime May 21) after 27 years. The event began at Centennial Field in Snoqualmie with a scavenger hunt for various Twin Peaks-related locations and items around the area. After the hunt, which ended at DirtFish, on the former Weyerhaeuser mill site, participants watched a screening of the Twin Peaks movie “Fire Walk With Me.”

• Winning mountain view, May 24: North Bend’s own web camera, purchased years ago to show off the beauty of the city to Web users around the world, has won the Valley Record’s annual reader scenic photo contest. The honors actually go to camera operator, Tom Meagher of the North Bend Economic Development office, who submitted three photos of Mount Si for the contest. Photographer Danny Raphael claimed first place in the people and animals categories.

• Five-way mayoral race caps filing week, May 24:

As of the close of filing at King County Elections Friday, May 19, four challengers had filed their intentions to challenge Snoqualmie Mayor Matt Larson for his seat. The challengers include former Snoqualmie Mayor Fuzzy Fletcher, Snoqualmie City Councilman Brad Toft, Snoqualmie business owner Steve Pennington and longtime resident Edward J. Mortensen.

• Devoted fans welcome premiere of ‘Twin Peaks’ in North Bend, May 24:

More than 60 people from all over the world gathered in North Bend for the “Twin Peaks” season three premiere party at Compass Outdoor Adventure May 21. Jessica Tate, manager of the North Bend Visitor Information Center and one of the event organizers, said the event had people participating in “Twin Peaks” filming location tours during the day, followed by the premiere that evening. Volunteer Mary Hutter led the day’s filming location tours, around North Bend, Snoqualmie and Fall City to various locations featured in the original series, before the long-awaited premiere of season 3 of the show at Compass. Snoqualmie celebrated the Twin Peaks premiere with a day of activities at DirtFish the prior weekend.

• Contamination, traffic, noise pollution are top community concerns for mill site project, May 31:

Snoqualmie City Hall was packed May 23, for a scoping meeting on the proposed development of the former Weyerhaeuser lumber mill at Snoqualmie Falls. The meeting was held to take public comments for inclusion in the upcoming environmental review of the project proposed for the site, now home to DirtFish Rally School. Seventeen people spoke about the development and what they want to see in the environmental review.

• Northwest Railway Museum celebrates 60-, 50- and 10-year anniversaries Sunday, May 31:

“To another 50 years,” Bill Petitjean announced as he cut the ribbon Sunday at the Northwest Railway Museum. His role in the event, celebrating 60 years of the Northwest Railway Museum, the 50th anniversary of the start of passenger train rides at the museum, and the 10th anniversary of the museum’s growing history campus, was especially historic since Petitjean had served as a fire man on the very first passenger train the museum operated, 50 years ago exactly, on Sunday, May 28, 1967.

• Hodgson ties for 13th in girls state golf tournament, May 31: Mount Si High School golfers Kat Hodgson and Tori Berger represented the school May 22 to 24 at the state championship golf tournament at MeadowWood Golf Course in Liberty Lake. Hodgson placed fifth in the district tournament May 8 and 9 to qualify for state. Berger finished Districts in 13th, qualifying as a second alternate to the state event.

JUNE

• King County restores Tolt River property; plants memorial for influential employee, June 7: Recent damage to a local environment restoration site has forced King County to install a gated entrance to protect not only the newly planted trees, but the memorial of an influential King County employee, Clint Loper. With the restoration of the San Souci neighborhood in Carnation, King County has been working to protect local residents from flooding and landslides, and also to restore the land back to its natural state.

• Snoqualmie man sentenced to three years in prison on federal fraud charges, June 7:

Darryl Lee Wright of Snoqualmie was sentenced Thursday, June 1, in U.S. District Court in Tacoma to three years in prison, three years of supervised release, and ordered to pay $646,300 in restitution for his scheme to defraud multiple government programs, announced U.S. Attorney Annette L. Hayes.

• I-90/S.R. 18 interchange fixes moved up on state schedule; construction to start in 2019, June 14:

Good news for Valley drivers, the problematic interchange between I-90 and State Route 18 has had its project timeline moved up seven years. Thanks to work from State Senator Mark Mullet and State Representatives Jay Rodne and Paul Graves, the project, which was originally slated to begin in July 2023 and be completed by 2028, is now starting this year.

• Karate teacher gets life-saving donation from North Bend woman, June 21:

Connections formed around community organizations can change lives. Mount Si School of Karate teacher Michael Morris knows this well, as he was the recent recipient of a kidney transplant from a parent of a student in his program. Roxanne Cannon, spoke with Morris over Facebook and decided to offer one of her kidneys to the teacher who had been such a positive influence on her son for many years.

• Tolt Hill Bridge to stay closed at least two weeks, June 28:

When the new Tolt Hill Bridge was built in 2008, it was built exactly according to the plans, King County Roads officials say, only the plans were wrong. Now, the nine-year-old, $17 million bridge is closed indefinitely — and has been since Friday evening, June 16 — while engineers determine how to make the needed repairs.

JULY

• Park expansion project is running out of time, July 5:

A five-acre parcel of land next to North Bend’s E.J. Roberts Park would be a dream come true for a partnership of the residents of the Silver Creek neighborhood, the city of North Bend and the Si View Metropolitan Parks District. Resident Leila Brett has started a Gofundme drive to raise the money to buy the land, directly East of, and roughly the same size and shape as E.J. Roberts Park. It is currently on the market as a potential site for a new 12-home neighborhood.

• Local group hopes to stop Dahlgren development, turn ‘mule pasture’ into park, July 5:

A second locally driven Gofundme campaign, also in North Bend, is proposing to fight the planned development of 21 acres along North Bend Way known as the Dahlgren Property. The proposed development on this site is a 212-unit apartment complex.

• FBI arrests suspected North Bend bank robber, ‘AK-47 Bandit’, July 5:

A joint law enforcement effort last week has resulted in the capture of the man believed to have robbed the North Bend branch of the Chase Bank with an assault rifle on July 6, 2012. Agents from the Federal Bureau of Investigation and law enforcement officers from California, Nebraska and Kansas cooperated in the apprehension of Richard Lee Gathercole, 39, of Roundup, Mont., who is believed to be the AK-47 Bandit.

• Many sports,just one wheel: North American Unicycling Championships arrives next week in North Bend, July 12:

After 15 years, the North American Unicycling Convention and Championships are returning to the Valley. North Bend has been selected to be the host city for the upcoming event, July 16 to 22. The NAUCC will bring in people from around the country to compete in distance riding, freestyle exhibitions, urban terrain obstacle courses, mountain biking, and team sports including basketball and hockey.

• Valley’s Relay for Life raises more than $79,000 to fight cancer, July 12:

Cancer survivors, caregivers, supporters and community members came out to Tollgate Farm Park in North Bend July 8, to participate in the annual Relay for Life. This year’s event brought in more than $79,000.

• CHS runners break two-hour marathon in relay, July 12: They didn’t exactly replicate the conditions created by Nike in a May 5 attempt to break the two-hour marathon barrier, but the eight Cedarcrest High School cross country runners who ran a 1:57:22 marathon in relay last Friday shared the same curiosity. “It was a test of how fast a human could run under perfect conditions,” explained Emmett Klaiber, who made the attempt with Chase Bolin and Ian Fay, Ben Benson, Patrick McCabe,Daniel Murphy, Grant Van Valkenburg, and Ryan LaTurner.

• Valley dance teacher nominated for national choreography award, July 19: Local dance teacher and choreographer Katie Black will be heading to Hollywood on Aug. 15 for the Industry Dance Awards and Cancer Benefit Show, where she is in the running for an award for Best Jazz Performance for her original dance “Unsteady.” Black, founder of Ignite: Dance and Yoga in North Bend, created and choreographed the dance herself and is now being recognized for her work as one of nine nominees for the national award.

• Falls Little League Cubs win Snoqualmie Valley Championship tournament, July 19: The Falls Little League Cubs took first place in the Majors division this year and then went onto win seven straight games in the playoffs to capture their championship June 9. The Cubs beat the Snoqualmie Valley North Indians in the championship game 6-3 at Aldarra Fields.

• Plaza project begins, July 26:

Construction on the North Bend Downtown Plaza project began on Monday and is projected to wrap up by the end of November. East North Bend Way and Main Avenue North will be closed for the work. Improvements planned for the $1.6 million project include widened sidewalks, improved stormwater drainage, landscaping and the burial of utility lines in the North Bend Way/Main Avenue intersection.

• Preston CrossFit gym sends eight athletes to CrossFit Games in Wisconsin, July 26:

A team of athletes from Cascade CrossFit in Preston is one of 40 in the world to compete the 2017 CrossFit games, Aug. 3 to 6 in Madison, Wisc. The team, includes James Bevan-Lee, Hannah Heil, Trina Huarte, Kyle Jacobson, Nick Martindale and Caitlyn Zavaglia. James Sprague and Tudor Magda, both age 15, also qualified for the event, placing third and 10th, respectively in their age division.

AUGUST

• Missing hiker and dog rescued Thursday afternoon from Crater Lake area of Mt. Teneriffe, Aug. 9:

Kimberly Haines, missing since Monday, was reunited with her family Thursday afternoon, after King County Search and Rescue pinpointed her location, near Crater Lake. She walked off the Guardian One helicopter without assistance and said repeatedly she was OK.

• North Bend Chiropractor celebrates 30 years of business in the Valley, Aug. 16:

Longevity and good health aren’t just goals for North Bend chiropractor Leslie Bedell’s clients, they have been some of the defining factors of her business for decades. On Saturday, Aug. 5, Bedell celebrated 30 years of doing business at Agape Chiropractic Healing Center.

• City Council unanimously rejects Snoqualmie Hills West annexation proposal, Aug. 25:

The Snoqualmie City Council voted unanimously Aug. 21 against a developer’s letter of intent to petition for a proposed annexation of Snoqualmie Hills West. The land proposed for annexation was being considered as the location for development of an 800-unit 55-and-older senior living community.

SEPTEMBER

• Classic starting signal, Sept. 1:

A Boeing jet flies over The Club at Snoqualmie Ridge Aug. 25, signalling the start of the PGA Champions Tour event. The tournament capped off a week of activities at the Boeing Classic, and ended Sunday with the a 3.5-foot putt by Jerry Kelly to claim the $2.1 million grand prize.

• Snoqualmie Ridge Safeway celebrates its grand opening; donates to local nonprofits, Sept. 1: The new 43,405 square-foot Safeway on the corner of SE Douglas Street and Snoqualmie Parkway, had hundreds waiting patiently outside the store for the official ribbon cutting Aug. 23.

• Hundreds turn out to debate North Bend farm’s future, Sept. 8:

It will be both a farm and a college in the next few years, say supporters of a plan to restore Mountain Meadows Farm in North Bend to agricultural production. It will be a traffic nightmare, accompanied by water and septic system problems and wildlife habitat loss say opponents. The two sides came together at an open house Aug. 31 to discuss the project.

• Day of the dogs: Valley’s DoggieStock 4 festival doubles in size this year, Sept. 15: In its fourth year, the annual celebration of dogs and music is going strong in North Bend. DoggieStock 4 returned to Tollgate Farm Park Sept. 9, drawing hundreds of dogs and their owners. The fundraiser for Valley Animal Partners included food, live bands, dog adoptions, agility demonstrations and the always popular Doggie Olympics.

• Snoqualmie Brewery innovates with augmented reality beer label, Sept. 15: As part of its 20th anniversary, the Snoqualmie Brewery and Taproom is introducing a brand-new pale ale, with a high-tech label. The Sno Falls American Pale Ale’s unique label is equipped to display an augmented-reality animation of Snoqualmie Falls through the free smartphone app Layar.

• Everett celebrates Bella Vita retirement, Sept. 15: Marie Everett, former co-owner of Bella Vita Spa and Salon in downtown Snoqualmie, celebrated her retirement from the business after 17 years. Sept. 9. Before Bella Vita, Everett was a sales representative at the Snoqualmie Valley Record for 12 years.

• Hospital board unhappy with affiliation proposal, Sept. 22: The Snoqualmie Valley Hospital Board of Commissioners received only one response to a request for affiliation proposals, and that one, from Yakima-based Regional Health, did not meet the commission’s criteria — financial and branding support, primarily. Rather than pursuing the affiliation, the board has voted to table the process until they can hear more from the organization’s administrative staff at a future meeting.

• Little law firm earns big honors: Brown & Sterling named one of Washington’s Best Workplaces, Sept. 22:

One of Washington’s best workplaces, according to a list put out this summer by the Puget Sound Business Journal, is the small law firm of Brown and Sterling in Fall City. It’s an office with 11 staffers, total, including the founder Larry Brown, and it shares the honor with such big names as BECU, Evergreen Home Loans and the Zillow Group.

• Snoqualmie Valley Riding Club shuts down after 70 years in North Bend, Sept. 22:

On the year of its 70th anniversary, the Snoqualmie Valley Riding Club is closing its doors and looking for another non-profit organization to donate its property to after a tough few years of declining membership and funding. The club, established in 1947, is located on a seven- acre property at 13121 415th Way SE, North Bend, and features a clubhouse and arena.

• JazzClubsNW partners with Wildflower Wine Shop at fire hall, Sept. 22:

After losing its partner for food and wine service at the old North Bend Fire Station, the non-profit JazzClubsNW, previously the Boxley Music Fund, has announced a partnership with Wildflower Wine Shop to renovate the building. Together, the two organizations will serve up live music, plus food and drink. Piccola Cellars ended operation in North Bend on July 30.

• Echo Glen marks 50 years of rehabilitating youth, Sept. 29:

It’s been 50 years since Echo Glen Children’s Center began operating in the Snoqualmie Valley under the State Department of Social and Health Services as a juvenile rehabilitation institution. On Sept. 20, the administration welcomed former staff members, alumni, city representatives and many community volunteers to a 50th anniversary celebration.

• NW Railway Museum acquires steam engine from Bellingham, Sept. 29: Thanks to a donation from the city of Bellingham, the Northwest Railway Museum in Snoqualmie is now the owner of a 99-year-old steam locomotive and will begin restoration work on the engine. The No. 7 Porter steam locomotive had been on display at the Bloedel-Donovan Park in Bellingham since 1960. When the city decided to remove the locomotive, it looked for organizations that would be able to take it in. The Northwest Railway Museum was chosen as the recipient.

• Hundreds celebrate 100th birthday with Preston’s Pearl Moore, Sept. 29:

Pearl Genevieve (Carlson) Moore of Preston celebrated her 100th birthday with some 300 family members and friends Saturday, Sept. 23 at the Preston Community Center. Among the guests at the reception was King County Councilwoman Kathy Lambert, who presented her with a U.S. flag, flown over the U.S. Capitol on Monday, Sept. 18, her 100th birthday.

OCTOBER

• Snoqualmie sites dedicated to honor former mayor, Charles Peterson, Oct. 6:

After months of preparation and work, the family of former city leader Charles S. Peterson held a community walk to several downtown Snoqualmie locations and announced the dedication of several memorials in memory of Peterson.

• Rare electric interurban car added to museum’s collection, Oct. 6:

“It takes a little imagination,” Northwest Railway Museum Director Richard Anderson said, as a deteriorating 1907 train car arrived in Snoqualmie. A little imagination, but that’s all that’s needed to envision the luxurious origins of this newest acquisition by the Northwest Railway Museum.

• Mayhew appointed to Snoqualmie’s open City Council seat, Position 4, Oct. 13:

After multiple rounds of interviews, the Snoqualmie City Council on Oct. 9 chose James Mayhew to fill a vacant seat, at Position 4. The position was open since Councilman Brad Toft resigned the seat Aug. 19, two years into his term. The position is the only city council seat not on the ballot for election this year. Mayhew will serve through Dec. 31, 2019.

• Saving Valley history: Two Valley efforts recognized with John D. Spellman awards for historic preservation, Oct. 27:

King County’s History Preservation program recognized two parties from the Snoqualmie Valley, the Fall City Historical Society and Valley resident Diana Keller, for their efforts in historic education and rehabilitation Oct. 18 at the annual presentation of the county’s John D. Spellman Awards for Achievement in Historic Preservation.

NOVEMBER

• City Council wants events contract investigation, Nov. 3:

Snoqualmie will soon hire an ethics hearing officer, as well as an independent auditor to investigate whether two employees have violated the city’s ethics code, and whether the city was fraudulently billed for work not performed. The council reached these points of consensus Oct. 30, after a lengthy discussion on recent findings by Snoqualmie citizens. The two employees in question are contract events coordinator and previous economic development consultant, Leslie (Lizzy) Billington, and her supervisor for the past year, Public Works Director Dan Marcinko.

• Hospital board votes to pursue next step in affiliation process with Astria Health, Nov. 3:

Snoqualmie Valley Hospital’s board of commissioners has voted to proceed with the process of affiliating the hospital with Astria Health, recently renamed from Regional Health.

• North Bend cuts the ribbon on downtown plaza improvements, Nov. 3:

On Oct. 31, the city of North Bend held the official ribbon cutting for downtown plaza improvements. Alongside the city celebration, downtown businesses gave out candy to trick-or-treaters as part of the “Trick-or- Treat Street Plaza Party.”

• North Bend area preferred for new weigh station, Nov. 17:

Snoqualmie’s weigh station, located at the S.R. 18 and Interstate 90 interchange, has got to go. It’s too small for inspections, says WSP Captain Michael Dahl, and there won’t be room for it there once the future improvements planned for that interchange in 2019 begin. Dahl and several officers from WSP met with North Bend residents to discuss alternative locations for the station. Dahl’s preference, at milepost 33.5, was a very unpopular choice for audience members.

• ‘A Christmas Carol’ returns for its 10th production at the Valley Center Stage, Nov. 24: “A Christmas Carol” has become somewhat of a Valley Center Stage tradition during the holiday season. Directors of this year’s production, Brenden and Wynter Elwood, said that the classic story really captures the theme and moral of the holiday spirit. The show opens for its 10th production on Dec. 1.

DECEMBER

• Valley organizations form coalition to improve public transportation options for residents, Dec. 8:

Making use of a $100,000 grant from the non-profit human services organization Easterseals, Hopelink has formed the Snoqualmie Valley Transportation Coalition, a group of representatives from each city in the Snoqualmie Valley and several organizations who would be able to create a more coordinated vision for the future of travel in and out of the area. The grant will fund the group’s projects to make improvements to public transportation in the area over the next year.

• Good, muddy fun: Mountain biking club celebrates big season, recruits for next year, Dec. 15:

When the Mount Si Mountain Bike Club started in 2012, it was too small to actually compete. When the 2016-17 season ended in October, the team boasted more than 40 members, boys and girls, high school and middle school, with plans to recruit more of them all, but especially girls, for the start of the next season in February.

• Snoqualmie receives Quadrant donation of four properties, Dec. 22:

Quadrant, one of the developers of Snoqualmie Ridge, has offered to give the city four forested properties around the north side of the Ridge development. The Snoqualmie City Council authorized the mayor Dec. 11 to accept Quadrant’s offer to convey ownership of the land at no cost to the city.

• Holiday spirit headquarters: Giving Tree program wraps up with two-day shopping event at North Bend LDS church, Dec. 22: Snoqualmie Valley Kiwanis held their annual Giving Tree event last week.

As an eventful 2017 draws to a close, we looked back over a landmark year of citizens taking action, to preserve open spaces, protect the environment and hold local governing bodies accountable for the same responsibilities. From crowdfunded parks projects to an unprecedented level of opposition in local elections, the citizens of our Valley have […]

As an eventful 2017 draws to a close, we looked back over a landmark year of citizens taking action, to preserve open spaces, protect the environment and hold local governing bodies accountable for the same responsibilities. From crowdfunded parks projects to an unprecedented level of opposition in local elections, the citizens of our Valley have […]

As an eventful 2017 draws to a close, we looked back over a landmark year of citizens taking action, to preserve open spaces, protect the environment and hold local governing bodies accountable for the same responsibilities. From crowdfunded parks projects to an unprecedented level of opposition in local elections, the citizens of our Valley have […]

Kristen Lockwood is working on large mural featuring outdoor activities for the Opstad Elementary School gym. (Evan Pappas/Staff Photo)

Kristen Lockwood is working on large mural featuring outdoor activities for the Opstad Elementary School gym. (Evan Pappas/Staff Photo)

Roxanne Cannon and Michael Morris pose for a photo before undergoing a kidney transplant surgery on May 22. Cannon is the mother of Tyler Shaw, a black belt and student instructor at Mount Si School of Karate. (Courtesy Photo)

Roxanne Cannon and Michael Morris pose for a photo before undergoing a kidney transplant surgery on May 22. Cannon is the mother of Tyler Shaw, a black belt and student instructor at Mount Si School of Karate. (Courtesy Photo)

Road engineer Larry Jaramillo described the issues with the Tolt Hill bridge at a community open house at Tolt Middle School June 21. The connections of the bridge deck to the supports were made with too-small bolts and not enough of them. The bridge closed without warning June 16, but has since re-opened to light vehicle traffic while engineers design the repair project. (Carol Ladwig/Staff Photo)

Road engineer Larry Jaramillo described the issues with the Tolt Hill bridge at a community open house at Tolt Middle School June 21. The connections of the bridge deck to the supports were made with too-small bolts and not enough of them. The bridge closed without warning June 16, but has since re-opened to light vehicle traffic while engineers design the repair project. (Carol Ladwig/Staff Photo)

Perry Falcone, project coordinator for the Snoqualmie Watershed Forum, Chase Barton, supervising engineer for King County river and floodplain management, and Doug Williams, media relations coordinator for the King County Department of Natural Resources and Parks, stand at the shore of the Tolt River on the San Souci property, where they recently completed a restoration project in memory of a beloved county staffer, Clint Loper. (Evan Pappas/Staff Photo)

Perry Falcone, project coordinator for the Snoqualmie Watershed Forum, Chase Barton, supervising engineer for King County river and floodplain management, and Doug Williams, media relations coordinator for the King County Department of Natural Resources and Parks, stand at the shore of the Tolt River on the San Souci property, where they recently completed a restoration project in memory of a beloved county staffer, Clint Loper. (Evan Pappas/Staff Photo)

Rescued hiker Kimberly Haines stepped off the rescue helicopter without any assistance Aug. 3 at Torguson Park. Haines and her dog had been missing since July 31, when she was last seen heading out to the Mount Teneriffe trail for a hike. Both had minor injuries from the incident but were soon able to go home. (Photo courtesy of Mary Miller)

Rescued hiker Kimberly Haines stepped off the rescue helicopter without any assistance Aug. 3 at Torguson Park. Haines and her dog had been missing since July 31, when she was last seen heading out to the Mount Teneriffe trail for a hike. Both had minor injuries from the incident but were soon able to go home. (Photo courtesy of Mary Miller)

Leslie Bedell has owned and operated Agape Agape Chiropractic Healing Center in North Bend for 30 years. (Evan Pappas/Staff Photo)

Leslie Bedell has owned and operated Agape Agape Chiropractic Healing Center in North Bend for 30 years. (Evan Pappas/Staff Photo)

Carol Peterson, center, and her children Julie and Ryan stand in front of the newly unveiled name of the Snoqualmie City Council Chambers. (Evan Pappas/Staff Photo)

Carol Peterson, center, and her children Julie and Ryan stand in front of the newly unveiled name of the Snoqualmie City Council Chambers. (Evan Pappas/Staff Photo)

A crane lifts the wheelless car off a flatbed truck in September, as the Northwest Railway Museum took possession of its newest future exhibit, the electric interurban train car. (Carol Ladwig/Staff Photo)

A crane lifts the wheelless car off a flatbed truck in September, as the Northwest Railway Museum took possession of its newest future exhibit, the electric interurban train car. (Carol Ladwig/Staff Photo)

Diane Garding reorganizes some of the toys available for pick up at the Giving Tree event earlier this month at the North Bend Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. (Evan Pappas/Staff Photo)

Diane Garding reorganizes some of the toys available for pick up at the Giving Tree event earlier this month at the North Bend Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. (Evan Pappas/Staff Photo)

Mount Si Mt. Bike club member Grant Harrison races ahead of Lorenzo Harteveldt in the sixth grade race near Gig Harbor. The team has finished a successful season and grown from its 2012 start into a nonprofit that races most of the year now. (Courtesy Photo)

Mount Si Mt. Bike club member Grant Harrison races ahead of Lorenzo Harteveldt in the sixth grade race near Gig Harbor. The team has finished a successful season and grown from its 2012 start into a nonprofit that races most of the year now. (Courtesy Photo)

A Twin Peaks fan poses for a photo with the original motorcycle used in the first season of Twin Peaks, brought to North Bend’s premiere event by owner Arlie Becker. (Photo Courtesy of Mary Miller)

A Twin Peaks fan poses for a photo with the original motorcycle used in the first season of Twin Peaks, brought to North Bend’s premiere event by owner Arlie Becker. (Photo Courtesy of Mary Miller)

The smokestack and warehouse at DirtFish Rally School were part of the filming locations for the new season of Twin Peaks, celebrated in Snoqualmie and North Bend in May of this year. (Photo Courtesy of Mary Miller)

The smokestack and warehouse at DirtFish Rally School were part of the filming locations for the new season of Twin Peaks, celebrated in Snoqualmie and North Bend in May of this year. (Photo Courtesy of Mary Miller)

Kat Hodgson, left, and Tori Berger represented Mount Si High School at the state golf tournament May 22 to 24 at MeadowWood Golf Course in Liberty Lake. (Courtesy Photo)

Kat Hodgson, left, and Tori Berger represented Mount Si High School at the state golf tournament May 22 to 24 at MeadowWood Golf Course in Liberty Lake. (Courtesy Photo)

A contractor smooths out the surface of a new sidewalk, part of North Bend’s downtown plaza project. Work on the project was stalled in August by a cement worker strike, but got back on track quickly when the strike ended. (Photo courtesy of Mary Miller)

A contractor smooths out the surface of a new sidewalk, part of North Bend’s downtown plaza project. Work on the project was stalled in August by a cement worker strike, but got back on track quickly when the strike ended. (Photo courtesy of Mary Miller)

The No. 7 Porter steam locomotive, acquired by the Northwest Railway Museum this summer, arrives at the North Bend depot as volunteers prepare to get it off of the truck and on to the rails. (Evan Pappas/Staff Photo)

The No. 7 Porter steam locomotive, acquired by the Northwest Railway Museum this summer, arrives at the North Bend depot as volunteers prepare to get it off of the truck and on to the rails. (Evan Pappas/Staff Photo)

The museum’s newest addition is pulled over the Snoqualmie River on bridge 35. (Photo courtesy of Northwest Railway Museum)

The museum’s newest addition is pulled over the Snoqualmie River on bridge 35. (Photo courtesy of Northwest Railway Museum)

Snoqualmie City Council chambers were packed July 24, fora presentation of the Snoqualmie Hills West annexation and development project. The strong citizen response to this proposed annexation and large senior living development was just one example of the way Valley citizens took the intitiative in the past year. (Evan Pappas/Staff Photo)

Snoqualmie City Council chambers were packed July 24, fora presentation of the Snoqualmie Hills West annexation and development project. The strong citizen response to this proposed annexation and large senior living development was just one example of the way Valley citizens took the intitiative in the past year. (Evan Pappas/Staff Photo)

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Washington State Capitol. Photo by Nicole Jennings
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