News Release 13-037
Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission
1111 Israel Road S.W., P.O. Box 42650, Olympia, WA 98504-2650, (360) 902-8500
Don Hoch, Director
Virginia Painter (360) 902-8562
Wash. Telecommunications Relay Service:
Celebrate 100 years of state parks in Washington
Aug. 3 at Deception Pass State Park
July 22, 2013 –
The Deception Pass State Park Foundation and the Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission invite the public to a day of family fun at Deception Pass State Park to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Washington state park system.
The Centennial 2013 Celebration is from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 3, at Deception Pass State Park, 41020 State Route 20, Oak Harbor. The event will take place in the East Cranberry Lake area near the main entrance of the park. The Deception Pass celebration is the signature Centennial 2013 event for Western Washington, to commemorate the park system’s 100th anniversary. An Eastern Washington signature event was held at Riverside State park near Spokane on June 8.
The daylong special event will feature music all day, as well as Junior Ranger and other activities for children, model sailboat races, park tours and a Volkssport walk, information booths, crafts and a variety of food items available for purchase. A birthday ceremony is scheduled for 1 to 2 p.m. and will include remarks by dignitaries and a special birthday moment with an opportunity for crowd participation. Event participants also may want to take advantage of the day to explore the various areas of the park. Visitors are required to display a Discover Pass to enter the park.
The stage schedule for the day is as follows:
• 10 to 11:30 a.m. – Cannery Underground, folk music
• 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. – the Still Bill Band, rhythm and blues
• 1 to 2 p.m. – Birthday celebration ceremony
• 2 to 4 p.m. – Jacobs Road – classic rock
The day-long event is wholly sponsored by the Deception Pass Park Foundation, a non-profit, community-based organization whose mission is to support education and resource protection at Deception Pass State Park. The group provides ongoing support for education and community events at the park and has recently completed several projects restoring the park’s historic structures. To learn more, visit www.deceptionpassfoundation.org/
Deception Pass State Park is one of the most popular parks in the system, receiving an average estimated 1.75 million visits a year. The large marine and camping park comprises more than 4,000 acres and has 77,000 feet of saltwater shoreline and 34,000 feet of freshwater shoreline on three lakes. The park is often remembered for the dramatic 1930s-era bridge that connects parkland on Fidalgo and Whidbey Islands over the turbulent North Puget Sound waters of Deception Pass. Favorite park areas include Cornet Bay, Bowman Bay, Ben Ure Island and Rosario Beach, with the Maiden of Deception Pass story pole depicting the story of the Samish people and Kukutali, an area of the park managed in cooperation with the Swinomish Tribe. The park also includes old-growth forest, abundant wildlife and structures built by the Civilian Conservation Corps.
In addition to the signature event at Deception Pass, State Parks is offering opportunities for the public to help celebrate its 100th birthday with activities and events in parks all over the state all year long. Many of these events are offered in cooperation with friends groups, recreation organizations and communities. For details on Centennial 2013 events and activities, visit www.parks.wa.gov/events/.
Washington is one of the largest and most diverse state park systems in the country and was one of the first. The Legislature created the State Board of Park Commissioners on March 19, 1913, mainly to accept citizen donations of park lands. By 1929 the state system had expanded from a humble 26 acres to more than 8,000 acres. The ups and downs of budgets and the Great Depression took its toll, but the park system grew tremendously in the post-World War II expansion years, with capacity growing rapidly in the 1960s and beyond. The Centennial 2013 campaign created synergy that resulted in park system enhancements and improvements in the early years of the 21st century.
Today, the Commission manages 117 developed parks and a total of approximately 120,000 acres of park lands – approximately one-third of the land donated by citizens over the years. State parks receive an estimated 40 million visits a year statewide and generate a total annual direct contribution of more than $1 billion to state and local economies and more than $30 million in state tax receipts. A Commission-adopted Transformation Strategy, available online at www.parks.wa.gov/beyond2013/ is intended to focus efforts that will sustain the park system long-term.
Stay connected to your state parks by following Washington State Parks at www.facebook.com/WashingtonStateParks, www.twitter.com/WaStatePks_NEWS and www.youtube.com/WashingtonStateParks. Share your favorite state park adventure on the new State Parks’ blog site at www.AdventureAwaits.com.