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Rare tour of Rock Island dam takes visitors below the Columbia

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ROCK ISLAND — Rock Island Dam has the distinction of being the first dam on the Columbia River, and also one of the last built in Washington.

Construction on the dam’s original powerhouse began in 1927 and was completed in 1933. A second powerhouse was added between 1974 and 1979, after 10 other Washington dams had been built on the Columbia, said Bob Bauer, a Chelan County PUD education specialist who led a rare tour of the dam last Saturday. Tours were held as part of a “Rediscover Your PUD” public outreach program. Other tours and events continue through October.

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