Snoqualmie Valley Year in Review shows 2014 was filled with sirens, smiles, striving and change | Photo Gallery

The year that comes to an end this week was far from quiet, at least when it came to the news. From the April explosion that flattened buildings in downtown North Bend, yet amazingly left just one person with light injuries, to the police changeover in North Bend, to Snoqualmie Valley hospital’s exploration of a sale, to transitions at Boxley’s, Encompass, Snoqualmie Fire Department, the Snoqualmie City Council, the year was filled with excitement and change, sirens and smiles.

The year that comes to an end this week was far from quiet, at least when it came to the news.

From the April explosion that flattened buildings in downtown North Bend, yet amazingly left just one person with light injuries, to the police changeover in North Bend, to Snoqualmie Valley hospital’s exploration of a sale, to transitions at Boxley’s, Encompass, Snoqualmie Fire Department, the Snoqualmie City Council, the year was filled with excitement and change, sirens and smiles.

Follow the big events of the year in the Valley Record’s Year in Review.


• Retired North Bend forest ranger and school board member Rudy Edwards recalled his days in Swaziland and South Africa, after South African statesman Nelson Mandela’s death in late 2013. Edwards taught at a Swazi school in the 1970s, as part of the Peace Corps with his wife, Connie, and navigated the region’s byzantine, segregated racial systems. Years later, he witnessed the vote that ended Apartheid.

• North Bend’s 2013 Citizen of the Year award goes to Gardiner Vinnedge, involved with countless community projects over the years— from saving Si View in 2003 and Meadow-brook Farm in 1996 to celebrating two cities’ centennials, to preserving and presenting the Valley’s history on various boards and commissions

• A bear hopped the fence of a neighborhood in the Heights neighborhood of Snoqualmie Ridge, and was chased away by a small dog. The dog followed, and was attacked and killed by the bear outside.

• Former management of Mount Si Food Bank split off and form their own organization, Snoqualmie Valley Food Bank, taking over the location next to North Bend Library. The Mount Si Food Bank brand moves to a new location, the former sheriff’s office on Boalch Avenue, run by Snoqualmie Valley Ministerial Association.

• Diane Larson, 36, of Snoqualmie was pursuing her goal of helping children when she fell to her death on a hike Saturday, Jan. 25, on Headlee Pass in the Cascades.  The experienced snow-shoer was on her first hike with Climbers with a Purpose, a group raising funds to help refugee children in Burma when she fell, in what fellow climber Will Neiss described as “just one of those freak accidents.”

Warming up her body after enlivening her memory, Donnie Lytle of Carnation throws punches with volunteer Julyanne Saavedra at the closing workout session of an Adult Day Health gathering in January at Sno-Valley Senior Center.


Above, intergenerational jazz happens on a Wednesday night last winter at Boxley’s club in North Bend, now a nonprofit focused on youth and community jazz. Front, from left, Danny and Robyn Kolke, at right, Chris Clark.Back row, Eric Thurston, Jared Byford, Max Cannella, Walker Byford, Brian Gmerek.

• Boxley’s club owners Danny and Robyn Kolke turned their restuarant over to the Boxley Music Fund, the non-profit organization they founded in 2010. It was part of a master plan to keep jazz flowing for many years to come. Keeping education and performance was why the club changed from a business to a non-profit.

North Bend couple Marty and Chris Fagan visit the official marker of the South Pole. The North Bend couple skied to the end of the earth, arriving Jan. 18

• Marty and Chris Fagan have climbed mountains, run hundred-mile races, and, last month they skied together to the South Pole, in minus-50 degrees Fahrenheit. Extremes of the environment and endurance are familiar ground, maybe even favorites, for the North Bend couple, but what they really love, what motivates them, are simpler things: their 12-year-old son Keenan; the friends and community who helped them reach their South Pole goal; the chair that was waiting for each of them at the end.

• All of the school levies on ballots in the Snoqualmie Valley appear to be passing with more than 60 percent support in the Feb. 11 election.

• King County Sheriff’s deputies are seeking tips in the death and abandonment of a newborn in woods between North Bend and Snoqualmie on Wednesday, Feb. 12. Police received a 911 call around 2:15 p.m., and responded to the 38800 block of Southeast North Bend Way. The baby was found by a person walking nearby, in the woods near the Kimble Creek Bridge about 10 feet away from the edge of North Bend Way.


North Bend Chief and Sgt. Mark Toner offers badge stickers to Abel Wheeler and his sister, Adeline, and mom Kara, when he met them outside the North Bend substation on the last week of King County Sheriff’s Office’s city contract.

• The 40-year relationship between North Bend and King County Sheriff’s Office ends at midnight, March 7, when the Snoqualmie Police Department begins covering North Bend. Office manager Kim Smith and administrative assistant Erin Mitchell both live in North Bend and hope to continue working in the community. Sgt. Toner leaves after four and a-half years as the city’s police chief for a patrol position south of I-90.

• As one era closes, another opens at the Snoqualmie Fire Department, where Mark Correira, left, started the year as the new fire chief. Outgoing Chief Bob Rowe, right, will retire this spring, but lingers for now in the role of battalion chief as Correira gets settled. “Titles don’t mean that much to me,” says

• Snoqualmie/North Bend police and a regional detective attempted to solve a stabbing and sexual assault that happened late Sunday in North Bend. Shortly after 11 p.m. Sunday, March 9, police responded to a 911 call from a business on the 400 block of Mount Si Boulevard in North Bend. Officers found a woman who had been stabbed once in the chest, duct taped at her feet and wrists, and sexually assaulted.

• Carnation’s new police officer is back. Scott Allen, who got his first job in law enforcement 17 years ago with Carnation’s police department, is once again patrolling the city, this time as both a King County Sheriff’s Deputy and Carnation’s dedicated full-time cop.

• Mount Si High School’s Freshman Campus was passing its first-semester checkup. Compared to the prior year, discipline issues were down, so were failing grades. Club participation is up among Snoqualmie Valley School district’s newest high school students, and that, say Freshman Campus staff, shows just how secure the Class of 2017 feels in their first year of high school.

Above, inaugural members of Snoqualmie Police Department’s dedicated North Bend patrol hit the street following a March 12 meet and greet at North Bend Elementary.

• For the new cops in North Bend, there’s no substitute for boots on the ground. So Snoqualmie Police Chief Steve McCulley had the six officers assigned to his department’s inaugural North Bend police patrol, plus extra officers from the home station, park their cars whenever possible and hit the streets and shops for some old-fashioned community policing.

• Locals, adults and kids alike, threw themselves into fundraisers to benefit the victims of the Oso Mudslide of March 22, which killed 43 people.

As rescuers dug for survivors in Oso, the effort drew national attention and local compassion. The Valley’s ‘Voice’ contestant, Austin Jenckes, also helped mudslide victims with fundraiser show.

Sister and brother Emily and Jack Lindsay of North Bend, ages 6 and 5, share their goodies following the North Bend Moose Lodge Easter egg hunt, Saturday, April 19, at Si View Park. Jack didn’t find as many eggs as his sister—“he got run over,” explained mom Sarah—so Emily gave him some of her haul.


• Mount Si High School’s 20-member Jazz I band got word that they were going to Essentially Ellington, the high school jazz festival hosted annually by Jazz at Lincoln Center.

“I essentially gave the students a kind of proposal,” band teacher Matt Wenman said. “If you really want to do this, we’re going to really throw ourselves into it… so that without a doubt our audition is the best we could possibly have done.”

• Two men were hospitalized April 15, after an argument turned physical in North Bend, one with a stab wound, the other with injuries sustained while attacking the other. None of the injuries were life-threatening, said Snoqualmie Police Captain Nick Almquist.

• The blast that woke North Bend in the predawn darkness on Friday, April 25, was centered on the former Pizza Place restaurant at 540 East North Bend Way, shuttered for years but recently under remodel construction. Nothing of the restaurant was left after a huge explosion tore the building to bits, hurling beams and pipes dozens of feet in all directions, and coating much of North Bend, for a quarter of a mile or more in all directions, with bits of insulation and debris. Concussive forces from the blast twisted and shifted nearby buildings and shattered windows. Amazingly, only one person was reported hurt—a resident of Red Oak suffered a hand laceration from flying glass.


• Fifty women renovated four houses off Orchard Drive in Snoqualmie  during National Women Build Week, May 3 to 11, giving new life to the local Habitat for Humanity homes and their new families.

• In the early morning of Tuesday, May 13, 25,000 hatchery-raised juvenile steelhead had joined the wild fish migration down the Snoqualmie River. Per state rules, that wasn’t supposed to happen. The Tokul Creek Hatchery fish were intended for release in eastern Washington lakes.

• Locals were singled out for special attention by local photographer Mary Miller, during her third annual Heart of the Valley community photo session, held Sunday, May 18, at Centennial Fields Park in Snoqualmie. Miller’s photo was more lightly attended than in past years. So, she improvised, working with the crowd to create memorable images, like a Seattle Seahawks “12.”

• Snoqualmie Police arrested a North Bend man in his 30s on suspicion of arson Tuesday, May 27, as firefighters from Snoqualmie and Eastside Fire & Rescue fought a large fire on the Meadowbrook Bridge in Snoqualmie.

• At the North Bend Theatre, owners Jim and Cindy Walker created a walk of fame with stars in the sidewalk, concluding the successful ‘Save Our Theatre’ campaign. The public donated $100,000 for a new projector system to bring the theater into the digital age, in return for sponsorships and goodies, and the thrill of keeping the independent moviehouse alive.

Above, Valley veterans celebrate Memorial Day at the downtown Snoqualmie memorial in May.

Above, Mount Si fastpitch players Rachel Picchena and Britney Stevens leave the field following their 10-0 round-two win at the SeaKing District softball tournament, Wednesday, May 21.


Below, workers with Absher Construction lift the tower cap of the future Snoqualmie Valley Hospital into place June 30.

• Snoqualmie couple Doug and Kristin Walsh were on their way in a world-wide adventure. Their goal is to ride their bicycles basically around the world, to discover amazing cultures, sample exotic foods, and see places they’ve only read about, in a trip they estimate will take about three years.

• Members of the Snoqualmie Valley Beekeepers Association transplanted a wild hive into Snoqualmie resident Jerri Johnson’s backyard bee box. A new queen got to work and the hive grew to 50,000 bees. “My goal is to make sure they make it through the winter. So, any honey they make, they keep,” Johnson said.


Above, 2nd Lt. Monica Lui crosses Tolt Avenue in formation with the Seattle Chinese Community Girls Drill Team, Friday morning, during the Carnation Fourth of July Parade. The festival committee welcomed the Chinese drill team back after a hiatus of several years. They won the 2014 parade award for best drill team.

• King County Public Hospital District No. 4, the rural district centered on Snoqualmie, considered selling its hospital and clinics to Overlake. The district’s board of commissioners approved a letter of intent to negotiate a sale at their Thursday, July 3, regular meeting. The sale, which later fell through, was explored to ensure Valley health care stayed competitive.

• Things were slow at first at the newly opened Carnation Public Food Bank, where locals collected needed food and clothing items or dropped off donations, or just chatted. That’s pretty much what founder Fred Vosk had in mind when he envisioned the re-opening of the former tribal food bank.

Jean Macris, wife of the late George Macris, visits with Jim McKeown and Kathy Stokesberry, current owners of George’s Bakery in North Bend. The bakery celebrated its 50th anniversary at the North Bend Block Party in July.

• George Macris loved his city, and he loved the summertime festival. There is no doubt that if George were alive today, he’d be all over the North Bend Block Party, selling cookies and bread, or mingling with the crowd. Macris, the namesake of George’s Bakery, founded his business 50 years ago in July.

• The third week of July was the last for a group of derelict buildings and blackberry bushes on North Bend’s Main Avenue. The city OK’d the demolition, brush-clearing and construction of a gravel parking lot on the privately-owned property.

• Dirt was turned for the first time in decades on the bank of Snoqualmie River, in the $4 million Upper Carlson floodplain project. Protecting “the three F’s,” fish, farms and flooding, the project includes demolishing a 1,600-foot stretch of the 80-year-old levee on the north bank and setting it back from the river on the county-owned Fall City Natural Area, improving a side channel that the river historically follows in flood events.


• After a top-10 showing in TV’s “The Voice,” local musician Austin Jenckes returns to North Bend for a MainStage show during the weekend’s Festival at Mount Si.

• Carnation’s Sno-Valley Senior Center bid farewell to executive director Amara Oden, who led the center through a major (and continuing) remodel when she started in 2007. Oden has always been called to work in non-profit fields, and has launched a consulting business to help other non-profits succeed. Peggy McNamara, Carnation Chamber of Commerce President, was chosen as her successor.

• Fall City Arts announced a public mural project, planned for the back wall of the Fall City Bistro, to be completed in September. Artist Dan Colvin has gotten approval for a design depicting the interplay of the Snoqualmie River with one of the Valley’s hidden communities, the Hmong flower farmers.

• Snoqualmie hosts a rare steam engine, the historic Santa Cruz & Portland Cement Locomotive 2, built in 1990, for its annual celebration of Railroad Days. The engine will pull trains during the three-day festivities, and will serve as advertising for the Northwest Railway Museum’s plans to restore several of its steam engines in the near future.

• Snoqualmie’s Sigillo Cellars held a work party recently, bottling up its 2012 vintages of Bordeaux-style wines. The owners, Mike Seal and Cande Collins, their son Ryan and friend Scott Hussey, rounded up some help and a mobile bottling facility to put up the vintage. Winemaker Steve Bailey oversaw the operations, and talked about winery’s new tasting room on Railroad Avenue in Snoqualmie.

• The proposed North Bend hotel development, along Bendigo Boulevard, starts construction The eight-acre site will be cleared and graded in preparation for construction next year. Week 11

•  Smokey Joe’s and one of its bartenders will appear in an independent film some time in 2015. “Captain Fantastic,” starring Viggo Mortensen as a man forced to return himself and his family to life “on the grid” after years in isolation, set several scenes in the Snoqualmie bar, owned by Jim and Pamela Leland. Bartender Diane Sheets appeared in several scenes with Mortensen. All agreed that Mortensen was very nice, and the crew was extremely professional.

• Snoqualmie Valley and Riverview School District superintendents joined 26 other districts in signing a letter opposing the state’s recent loss of waivers for the “No Child Left Behind” act requirements, and the judgement of the state’s “failing” schools. Without the waiver, six schools in the receiving Title I funding in the two districts were penalized for student test scores that did not meet federal adequate yearly progress standards.

• A riverside boardwalk in downtown Snoqualmie has been a dream for nearly a decade. That dream took a step closer to reality Monday, Aug. 24, when Snoqualmie City Council set aside more than half a million dollars as match funding for a potential grant. The council voted unanimously to reserve $713,000, in order to seek a Washington State Department of Ecology Floodplain by Design grant for the city’s Snoqualmie Riverfront Project.


Above, Seattle Seahawk guest of honor Marshawn Lynch circles the race course in a utility vehicle September 6, when hundreds of Seahawks fans visited the Valley during the Beastmode Challenge adventure race at Meadowbrook Farm.

• Mount Si High School starts fall sports facing a new set of challengers, now that the school is ranked 4A.

• Snoqualmie cut the ribbon on Jeanne Hansen Park, on Snoqualmie Ridge over the weekend. The late Hansen, mayor of Snoqualmie from 1987 to 1997, was a master of transformations, according to her colleagues. She shepherded the development of Snoqualmie Ridge, and died in 2001, before she could see the changes she wrought. The park was dedicated to her, and includes a bronze plaque commemorating her service.

Above, congregation members of St. Clare Episcopal and Snoqualmie United Methodist churches take communion in September, just before the Methodists’ 125th anniversary.

• Snoqualmie United Methodist Church celebrated its 125th anniversary, with a celebration under a maple tree, and the launch of a series of community dinners. The church started under a maple tree, with founding pastor A.E. Curtis gathering workers from the hops fields for services. As part of the celebration, musician Harley Brumbaugh will rally the Snoqualmie United Methodist Church choir for a musical performance, honoring the pioneering settlers and church history.

• Meadowbrook Farm will dedicate its new semi-permanent art installation, honoring Snoqualmie woman Maary Louie, Sept. 27. The installation, by Fall City artist Don Fels, former North Bend museum curator Kenneth G. Watson and Sammamish arts advocate Barbara Jirsa, features the cycles of a year, as seen by a Snoqualmie elder like Louie. She lived nearly a century ago, and travelled the region with her healing arts.

• It took more than a year, but the Snoqualmie Valley Administrative Secretaries Association now has a new employment contract. The secretaries’ union had been working under an expired contract since Sept. 1, 2013, but on Sept. 10 of this year, all 38 members voted to accept a new four-year contract with Snoqualmie Valley School District.


• A 28-year-old North Bend man who caused a fiery four-vehicle collision on Interstate 90 was hospitalized at Harborview Medical Center. Two other drivers suffered less serious injuries.

• A bumper crop of apples at North Bend’s The Nursery at Mount Si will help counter the unlucky pumpkin crop, for farm owner Nels Melgaard.

• North Bend’s new Visitor Information Center was officially unveiled on SAturday, Sept. 13. The new tourist stop and art gallery won’t just stoke newcomers’ interest in the city and its natural attractions, it’s also part of downtown’s new outlook. “It’s just one step in a whole journey,” said Geoff Doy, president of the North Bend Downtown Foundation. “North Bend is going to take on a new look and a new lease on life,” through future projects such as a proposed civic center.

• An assault-rifle-toting masked man called the AK-47 Bandit is still on the loose, after robbing several banks in early 2012. The North Bend branch of Chase Bank was one of his last sightings on the West coast in 2012. He was last reported robbing a bank in Rexburg, Idaho, in November, 2012, but may have resurfaced this summer, with the Aug. 22 robbery of a Nebraska City bank. A reward of $100,000 is being offered for information leading to this subject’s arrest and conviction

• Voters will decide on a $246 million school bond in the Snoqualmie Valley School District in February. The district’s board of directors voted 4 to 1 on Oct. 9 to proceed with a bond, slightly revised from the proposal under discussion for the past year. A sixth elementary school, $20 million in repairs and updates to other district buildings, and a 2,300-student-capacity high school rebuild to bring freshmen back onto the main campus are all components of the bond.

• Worldwide, fans of the 1990-91 television show “Twin Peaks,” celebrated last week when a long-awaited season three was announced, to air on Showtime in 2016. Locally, they snapped up tickets to the Twin Peaks Festival, which are now sold out for the 22nd annual gathering of show-lovers and Lynch-followers, July 24 to 27 in and around North Bend.

• Alexander Anderson, a North Bend teen, has developed a formula to more consistently calculate the efficiency of a wind turbine, a process that he and his parents, Alex and Olga, perfected over many years of experimentation. He presents his findings at a science symposium in Everett Nov. 1.


Seniors Mikaelyn Davis, a cheerleader and Mount Si track athlete, and Chris Schlicting, a football lineman, join up as 2014 homecoming king and queen, crowned Friday night, Oct. 17, at Mount Si High School’s home game versus Issaquah.

• Candidates for state House positions in the 5th Legislative District weighed in on education, transportation and the public good at a Snoqualmie Valley Chamber of Commerce forum Oct. 17. Jay Rodne of North Bend and Chad Magendanz of Issaquah, Republican incumbents for positions 1 and 2, respectively, sat down with Essie Hicks of Issaquah and David Spring of North Bend, their Democratic challengers, answering questions from presenter Carolyn Simpson, a Snoqualmie Valley School Board member.

• Eighteen years ago, Jean and Roy Woods of North Bend doubled their family’s size. The couple and their son, Tyler, welcomed triplets Ursula, Muriel and Frank into the family on Oct. 11, 1996. The triplets recently celebrated their 18th birthday with a small family gathering.

• Volunteers with the Snoqualmie Valley Garden Club brightened up an old eyesore in the city. A vacant lot on Main Street, just a block from North Bend’s City Hall, was cleared of several abandoned buildings this summer. Club members were asked to beautify the spot with native, drought-tolerant plants, and with the help of city staff to do some of the earth moving, they had the whole project done in two days time.

• Mount Si High School teacher and sports photographer Jim Gibowski has work on display in the Northwest African-American Museum this month. Gibowski’s 20-year-old images, snapped when he was juggling work as a sports photographer and substitute teacher, were chosen for “Pitch Black: African-American Baseball in Washington.”


• Northwest Railway Museum is looking forward to a steam revival, now that the organization has begun restoration on its Locomotive 924. The engine is the first to roll into the Snoqualmie organization’s Conservation and Restoration Center, for restoration under the care of the museum’s new curator of collections Staathi Pappas. Both the 924 and Canadian Colleries Locomotove 14 are slated for restoration in the coming years, giving the museum two steam-powered locomotives for special events like the Halloween Train and the Santa Train.

• Students at Mount Si High School wore Marysville Pilchuck colors and gathered after school Thursday, Oct. 30, for a group photo. The photo, along with flowers and a signed poster, are a show of support for the students of Marysville Pilchuck High, following the tragic shootings at the school Oct. 24.

• Snoqualmie Police and an allied SWAT team captured the suspect in two armed robberies in North Bend, following a seven-hour siege of a downtown Snoqualmie apartment Nov. 7. The department had received several tips about the identity and location of the suspect, believed to have robbed the Carter’s store in the North Bend Premium Outlets at 10 a.m. Nov. 6, and the jewelry store Claire’s earlier in the week. Police approached the suspect at his home around 3 a.m., after receiving another tip. The man ran into his home, and for about 7 hours, held police in a stand-off. At 10 a.m., police broke down the door and the man and a woman inside the apartment both surrendered.

• King County Hospital District 4 and Overlake Hospital have backed off from a deal to sell Snoqualmie Valley Hospital and its clinics to the Bellevue company. Negotiations were made public this summer and discussed in private sessions this fall, as well as at a public hearing on Oct. 2. The deadline for a decision on affiliation had been pushed to March, but last Thursday, Nov. 6, the district announced that the hospital will stay independent.

• A film crew in North Bend? Must be related to Twin Peaks. Well, that was mostly right, but the crew that showed up for a day of filming in North Bend and Snoqualmie Nov. 11 was more interested in the fans of Twin Peaks than in the David Lynch show itself. “It’s a documentary about how people connect with shows, like Twin Peaks,” said director Tracey Smith, who’d already visited the famous “Sleepless in Seattle” houseboat and the iconic “Rocky” steps. A group of local Twin Peaks super fans, including Barb and Richard Koefod, Mary Hutter, Chris Mathews, and Twin Peaks Festival organizers Rob and Deanne Lindley, took the crew on a tour of show landmarks, ending with pie and coffee at Twede’s Cafe in North Bend.

• Snoqualmie Valley Community Emergency Response Team graduated a new class of 20 plus volunteers Nov. 8. The local residents and employees finished off their emergency preparedness training over the past few weeks with exercises in fire fighting, extracting victims trapped under debris, and light search and rescue and triage.

• A masked man hiking along the damp, rocky shore of the South Fork of the Snoqualmie River, put an early end to a wildlife study meant to make highway driving safer. The man, armed with a steel bar, is the suspect believed to have stolen nine video cameras installed along the I-90 corridor near North Bend on Nov. 10. The cameras tracked wildlife activity around the freeway, in a study that started in 2010.

• Twin Falls students explored the science of catapults by building their own devices, testing them, and reporting on their results. For several days, the sixth grade hallway between Kyle Wallaces’ and Nancy Kinsella-Johnson’s classrooms, as well as the commons and the courtyard off Wallace’s room, were filled with students and flying balls, rubber bands, pumpkins, candy dots and anything else that students could measure for weight and density.


• Voters showed strong support for North Bend’s public safety measure, and the Si View Parks District maintenance and operations levy. When results of the Nov. 4 election were certified Nov. 25, the final tally for North Bend’s 0.1 percent sales tax increase for police and fire services was 64 percent in favor, with voter turnout of nearly 53 percent. Si View’s levy got 73 percent approval with turnout of more than 53 percent. In Carnation, however, a public safety levy failed by 27 votes, with the highest voter turnout of any local race, nearly 57 percent.

• Valley Center Stage is ready to lift the curtain on “Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the Christmas Carol” running weekends through Dec. 20. The show features the great detective and three unexpected Christmas Eve visitors, there to help him solve the most important mystery of his life.

• Former Fanta, Coke and fruit juice cans coalesced into a wiry-haired Jesus, Mary and Joseph are one of the in-demand nativity scenes that North Bend residents Phil and Diana Garding bring every year to the Bellevue Festival of the Nativity. The couple has collected more than 300 nativity scenes, and share about 90 of them with the festival each year.

• Two Mitchells and a VanWinkle from the Mount Si High School football program had a college reunion of sorts in November, when Oregan State University, with starting center Josh Mitchell, faced the University of Washington and team place-kicker Cameron VanWinkle. The younger Mitchell, Nick, was a red-shirted OSU freshman quarterback, watching from the sidelines.

• Snoqualmie unleashed winter magic for the holiday season, with a grand opening event for its synthetic ice rink, a melt-proof portable sheet of “ice” that will give families a chance to experience the magic of ice skating this holiday season. The rink opened on King Street with a celebration including carriage rides and a visit from two ice princesses. The rink moves to the Snoqualmie Ridge for the holidays.

• OneVOICE, the collaborative effort of nearly 40 Valley organizations, held its annual holiday event Dec. 11 and 12. “I just want people to see this, it’s such a community outpouring!” said Debby Peterman, one of the event organizers. In all the two-day event helped more than 2,400 people to have a warmer, happier holiday.

• Lighting contest winners in Snoqualmie were announced last week. Taking first place was the Deutsche home on Ash Avenue, and the Millers on Swenson were second. Third place went to the Kriegers, also on Ash.