The Wenatchee World

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Spend some time along the Columbia

From Chief Joseph Dam near Bridgeport, through orchard and wheat country and on down to Wells Dam below Pateros, the Columbia River rolls on for anyone looking to spend a day at the river’s edge. Visitors will find boat launches at Bridgeport State Park, above and below Chief Joseph Dam, up the Okanogan River near Monse, in Brewster and Pateros, and above and below Wells Dam.

Grand Coulee Dam: Spectacular and informative

Grand Coulee Dam is the largest concrete structure in North America and remains the third largest power producer in the world. Tours of the third and largest powerhouse at the dam are typically given in the spring and fall.
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Outfitters: Day rides to horseback vacations

Here are some of the outfitting companies offering excursions. Trips are typically available from late June through early September. Eden Valley Guest Ranch, Eden Valley: Patrick and Robin Stice; cabin rentals and horseback rides; edenvalleyranch.net; (509) 485-4002.

Candy, museums and more in Cashmere

Cashmere is a quiet, picturesque town dressed in neocolonial drapings where parents focus on raising families and keeping up their yards, retaining much of the charm it had 75 years ago. Most of the Craftsman bungalow-style homes along tree-lined Cottage Avenue were built about then, and the one-block-long downtown has changed little in appearance, aside from the colonial-style façade added in the 1960s.

Waterville is an oasis among the wheat

WATERVILLE — The best view of Waterville may be from the Badger Mountain Ski Area. From the log shelter there, you can see that the town sits near the edge of a great wheat-covered plateau largely surrounded by an oxbow in the Columbia River.

Leavenworth has fun, festivals to offer

The festivals are nearly nonstop in North Central Washington’s Bavarian theme town of Leavenworth, which draws more than 1.5 million visitors each year. Art in the Park is an outdoor show held in Front Street Park Fridays through Sundays, beginning April 30 and running through Oct. 17.

The Cascade Loop

The Cascade Loop Association publishes an annual travel guide that includes maps, camping and hiking information, and lists of places to stop, including accommodations and amenities. For the first time, the association this spring will also publish a driving tour CD and guide book highlighting the culture and history of the southern portion of the loop.

Did you say festivals? Yup, we’ve got ’em here

From the Apple Blossom in early spring to the last county fair in the fall, North Central Washington’s got its share of fairs, festivals and celebrations. Here’s what not to miss while you’re here:

Museums keep NCW history alive

Chelan County: Wenatchee Valley Museum & Cultural Center: 127 S. Mission St., Wenatchee. (509) 888-6240, e-mail is info@wvmcc.org. The museum’s Web site is wvmcc.org.
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Sports, shows delight crowds at city’s arena

Town Toyota Center, which opened in October 2008 in Wenatchee, is a $53 million, multipurpose, year-round event center. The 4,500-seat arena, situated near the riverfront, hosts Wenatchee Wild hockey games, trade shows, concerts and ice shows, and has a full-size community ice rink.
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Ohme Gardens is an oasis with a view of the valley

WENATCHEE — Ohme Gardens is a must-see experience for residents and visitors to North Central Washington. These beautiful gardens cover nine acres on a rocky bluff that overlooks the Wenatchee Valley.
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Stehekin’s the end of the road, but without the road

Have you ever dreamed of escaping to a lushly forested utopian village where strangers greet you with a smile, where deer wander through the streets and where there are neither billboards nor commercial radio and TV? There is such a place and it’s closer than you think. The village is called Stehekin, an Indian word meaning “the way through.” Indeed, Stehekin is a unique and captivating way into the North Cascades National Park, one of the nation’s most stunning reserves of natural beauty.
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Lake Chelan: 55 miles of recreational fun

Fifty-five-mile-long Lake Chelan, in the heart of North Central Washington, is a sparkling oasis stretching between the city of Chelan and the remote community of Stehekin. Much of its rugged, forested shoreline is accessible only by boat or on foot. Here are some of the services and features you’ll find along the lake:
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The Basin has lots to see, lots to do

Here’s where to go in Grant County for sun, beaches, water, sports and music:Ephrata Ephrata offers the Sage N’ Sun Festival June 9-13. The lawn in front of the Grant County Courthouse becomes a stage for live music and vendors, with Basin Street closing for the annual parade.
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The Methow has bike trails for every skill level

Whether you’re a hard-core mountain biker or a novice, the Methow Valley offers trails for all skill levels — and a wide variety of scenery. Jay Lucas, director of the Methow Valley Sports Trails Association, suggests making a long weekend or a short week of your outing.
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Natural beauty and Western adventure

The Omak Stampede and World Famous Suicide Race combine the spirit of pioneer cowboys with American Indian traditions in this county’s largest event. The 77th annual Omak Stampede is Aug. 12-15 this year. Omak
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Golf’s still the swingin’-est sport around

Kahler Glen Golf & Ski Resort: The 18-hole, par 70 course offers three levels: blue 5,893 yards; white 5,579 yards; and red 4,737 yards. Challenging mountain course. Full service restaurant and lounge. Tee-time reservations recommended for weekends and holidays. Condominium rentals available; must be booked in advance at 800-440-2994. Call (509) 763-4025 for tee times. It is located near Lake Wenatchee State Park, about 3.5 miles off Highway 2