News Around the Valley: Holiday lights, toy drive, school pictures, survival tips

North Bend Holly Days

The city of North Bend and the North Bend Downtown Foundation are working to create a safe Holly Days this year. However, it will not be the typical festival held in the city’s downtown.

Instead, it will be a calendar of events lasting more than a month that will encourage the community to shop, play and explore in the city. The calendar will be digital and in print. Included holiday promotions and activities must follow Washington state’s Safe Start mandate.

Businesses and nonprofits are encouraged to email Bre Keveren at the city with details on their holiday promotion:

Light Up North Bend

North Bend is holding a holiday lights contest called Light Up North Bend Holiday Spirit. The city is asking families, neighborhoods and businesses with storefronts to decorate this year. On Dec. 12, a panel of local judges will tour past registered homes and businesses.

Winners will be divided into three categories: best use of music, best theme and most lights. Winners will receive one gift card to a North Bend businesse of their choosing.

A list of winners and an online map will be announced on Dec. 14 so others can take the tour. The deadline to enter and decorate is Dec. 6. Online registration details will be announced soon. Visit

Eastside Fire and Rescue food and toy drive

Eastside Fire and Rescue has set a goal of raising $80,000 to match last year’s fundraising totals. They will be accepting gifts, food and money to share with individuals and families. The project is a partnership between the fire agency, Issaquah Food and Clothing Bank and HopeLink. More information is available online.

CenturyLink Field renamed

CenturyLink Field, which houses the Seattle Seahawks, will be renamed to Lumen Field. It follows CenturyLink’s re-branding to Lumen Technologies in September. The first game held at Lumen Field was the Nov. 19 game between the Seahawks and the Arizona Cardinals.

Emergency prep

With a La Nina winter on the way, the city of Snoqualmie is urging residents to prepare for a wetter, colder winter coupled with the coronavirus pandemic.

The city recommends residents keep 1 gallon of water per person, per day on hand, with enough supply for seven to 10 days. A non-perishable food supply for seven to 10 days is also recommended.

Other essential items include a manual can opener, first aid and hygiene items, prescriptions, flashlights and extra batteries, a battery-powered or hand crank radio, a whistle, blankets, cash in small bills, baby food and supplies, pet food and emergency phone numbers and important documents.

Marijuana public hearing

A second public hearing on a proposed North Bend marijuana retail store was held on Nov. 17, along with a first reading. It could be added to the next agenda as an action item, where the council could approve or extend it. Residents during the public hearing expressed both support and opposition to the proposed store. The city council voted to add an annual public safety mitigation payment totalling $25,000 onto the business if it is approved.

Si View Parks COVID restrictions

In accordance with Washington state’s new restrictions, Si View Metro Parks is changing its operations beginning Nov. 17. All indoor programs except for K-5 childcare will be paused or moved online. A full list of programs is available on its website.

This four week set of restrictions is in response to the rapid increase of coronavirus cases across the state. Restrictions will be in place until Dec. 14.

A list of affected programs includes the following:

Administrative support will be available, but online or by phone.

Parks and trails where physical distancing can be maintained are open. The department encourages people to limit travel and visit parks close to their homes. Outdoor activities are still limited to family outings or groups of five people or less outside of the immediate household, while maintaining 6 feet of distance.

Disc Golf at South Fork Landing is open for limited play with safety requirements posted.

The use of ballfields and sports courts for groups of five or less is allowed.

The Torguson climbing wall is open. And the Torguson pump track is open for single riders.

Playgrounds are open for small groups of five people or less. Park restrooms are open but intended for single use to limit overcrowding.

Small picnic shelters and fields are open by reservation.

There are limited indoor facility rentals for weddings and funerals for groups of up to 30 people.

However, organized sports tournaments and games, in-person community events, most facility rentals, the Si View Pool and the Torguson skate park are all closed.

Student photo days

Mount Si High School photo days are coming up on Dec. 2 and 9. The traditional student photo day was put on hold due to school closures. The district has been working with building administration, photographers and safety personnel to develop a plan to safely photograph staff and students.

Families will be able to order photos and students will be issued their 2020-2021 student ID cards.

The school will be holding two photo days to ensure safety of students and staff, and to control parking and traffic. Students will be following a schedule based on grade and alphabet. This schedule can be found online at the Snoqualmie Valley School District’s high school website page.

Snoqualmie Citizens Academy

The city of Snoqualmie will be presenting a virtual citizens academy this year. It’s designed to educate the public about how the city runs and operates. The course will feature 14 videos, including presentations by the mayor, city administrator, directors and staff. It will also feature a virtual tour of the police station, fire station and public works facility, and drone footage of city facilities and parks.