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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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In brief: Snake River family festival spotlights utility of dams

From staff and wire reports

RIVERS – The Snake River Family Festival, with free food, family activities, music and information booths on the importance of dams to the region, will be presented 11 a.m.-3 p.m. on Saturday at Boyer Park and Marina.

The event is sponsored by some wheat growers from Washington, Idaho and Oregon along with local port districts and other river partners. The festival will “highlight the multi-purpose Columbia/Snake River System’s contributions to the region’s economy and quality of life,” organizers say. Info: (509) 397-3791.

Spokane singer Nicole Lewis and her band will provide entertainment.

An information tent with area experts available for discussion regarding Columbia/Snake River Dams, salmon, river transportation and energy will be on site along with exhibitors including an interactive salmon display, farm machinery, barge and tug boat displays and more, said Rob Rich from Shaver Transportation, one of the festival partners.

A drawing will be held for a Hells Canyon jet boat tour for four.

“Alongside the fun activities, event organizers will educate and share information about the river system’s contributions to the local economy, agriculture, clean energy and salmon population,” organizers say in a release.

In 2014, more than 4.3 million tons of cargo were barged on the Snake River, organizers say. “It would have taken 43,000 rail cars or 167,000 semi-trucks to carry this cargo.”

The Snake River dams produce enough clean energy to power a city the size of Seattle each year.

The region’s salmon recovery efforts include improved hatcheries, expanded habitats and making dams safer for fish.

Opponents to the dams say they threaten the long-term survival of wild steelhead and salmon.

Volunteers needed at local areas

TRAILS – Two Spokane-area conservation areas where you can put your muscle to a good cause on Saturday include:

McKenzie Conservation Area at Newman Lake, with Spokane Mountaineers and the Newman Lake Property Owners Association will be working on a new trail. Meet at 8:30 a.m. at the McKenzie Conservation Area parking lot on West Newman Lake Road. Sign-up:

Dishman Hills Conservancy, for three hours of pulling weeds before they go to seed at a newly acquired property in the Ponderosa area of Spokane Valley. Meet at 10 a.m. just off the Dishman-Mica Road at Redeemer Lutheran Church, 3606 S. Old Schafer Rd. Sign up: Sack lunches provided for the volunteers who register.

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