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Northwest Traveler

Travel news, consumer advice and trip reports for the Northwest and beyond.

Topic: Leavenworth

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August 4, 2014 at 2:03 PM

Come visit, urge officials in Wash. wildfire areas

Vacationers play at Lake Chelan on Monday afternoon, as shown in this shot from the Campbell’s Resort webcam. Tourism officials in Washington’s wildfire areas, from Leavenworth to Chelan and the Methow Valley, are busy reassuring travelers that they’re open for business — and dearly want visitors. “We have received numerous calls and inquiries regarding the fire, smoke,…

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Comments | More in Washington tourism, wildfires | Topics: Cascade Loop Scenic Highway, chelan, Leavenworth

January 16, 2014 at 4:14 PM

Snow-light Leavenworth throws a January luau

Will the giant nutcracker at the Leavenworth Nutcracker Museum wear a hula skirt this weekend? You’ll have to visit and see. (photo by Ken Lambert / The Seattle Times, 2011) The Chelan County town of Leavenworth, with no snow for this weekend’s annual Bavarian Icefest,  is “making lemonade” with “our first, and perhaps last, Bavarian Ice…

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Comments | More in North Cascades, Northwest, snow sports, Washington state | Topics: Bavarian Icefest, Leavenworth, snow shortage

January 9, 2014 at 11:31 AM

Winter festivals in Chelan and Leavenworth are short of snow

Fire and ice combine during a previous Winterfest at Lake Chelan. (photo by Sy Stepanov)

Fire and ice (an ice sculpture) combine during a previous Winterfest at Lake Chelan. (photo by Sy Stepanov)

Washington’s light-snow winter is taking its toll on snow-dependent recreation across the state, and now it’s starting to infringe on some popular winter festivals as well.

Community festivals in Chelan, this weekend and next, and Leavenworth, Jan. 18-19, have been forced to cancel some ski and snowshoe events because of insufficient snow, though other entertainment is going ahead as planned.

Leavenworth is considering trucking in snow from Stevens Pass, or borrowing a large snow-making gun from Mission Ridge Ski Area, to provide some snow for its Bavarian Icefest.

“We need some nice, good, clean snow” for a snow sculpture event and a Downtown Rail Jam snowboard and ski demonstration,

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Comments | More in Northwest, Outdoors, snow sports, weekend getaways | Topics: Bavarian Icefest, Lake Chelan, Leavenworth

November 26, 2013 at 2:29 PM

Where are Puget Sounders driving for Thanksgiving? Here’s top 5 list (and when they’re going)

A milepost sign points to destinations around the world from Pioneer Courthouse Square in Portland, the destination topping the list in an AAA survey of Thanksgiving holiday trips for motorists in Western Washington. (photo by Ellen M. Banner/The Seattle Times)

A milepost sign points to destinations around the world from Pioneer Courthouse Square in Portland. Portland topped the list in an AAA survey of Thanksgiving holiday destinations for motorists in Western Washington. (photo by Ellen M. Banner/The Seattle Times)

AAA of Washington travel counselors report that top destinations for Western Washington motorists this Thanksgiving holiday — in addition to grandmother’s house — are:

  1. Portland
  2. Oregon Coast (including Cannon Beach, Lincoln City)
  3. Victoria, B.C.
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Comments | More in highways, Northwest, Washington state, weekend getaways | Topics: holiday destinations, holiday travel, Leavenworth

August 9, 2013 at 4:46 PM

Leavenworth’s video-hip nutcracker hopes to go viral again

Woody Goomsba grimaces as his speedboat comes under fire on the Wenatchee River, in the latest YouTube video promoting Bavarian-themed Leavenworth. (YouTube screen capture)

Beer-stein-toting Woody Goomsba grimaces as his speedboat comes under fire on the Wenatchee River, in the latest YouTube video promoting Bavarian-themed Leavenworth. (YouTube screen capture)

Woody Goomsba, Bavarian-themed Leavenworth’s hip-hop attuned nutcracker mascot, is making another run at video viral-ity.

A new tourism-promotion video from the Leavenworth Chamber of Commerce and Wenatchee-based North 40 Productions features the 18-inch-tall Goomsba, delivering an undeniably wooden performance, in a James Bond spoof entitled “Nutcrackers Never Die.” The video went up on YouTube on Thursday.

It starts with a boy and his father wandering Leavenworth’s Waterfront Park and looking through binoculars — as if they’re birdwatchers — in search of the elusive nutcracker. After spying on rock climbers, horseback riders, and a beer garden with lovely frauleins — it is a tourism commercial — they spot Goomsba at the helm of a speeding radio-controlled boat weaving among rafters and paddlers on the Wenatchee River. He’s soon pursued by

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Comments | More in Northwest, Tourism industry | Topics: "Nutcrackers Never Die", Leavenworth, Leavenworth video

August 6, 2013 at 10:42 AM

Fire closes Klonaqua Lakes, may send smoke into Leavenworth

Leavenworth could get smoke and haze from a nearby wildfire, forest officials warn. (photo by Brian J. Cantwell / The Seattle Times)

Leavenworth could get smoke and haze from a nearby wildfire, forest officials warn. (photo by Brian J. Cantwell / The Seattle Times)

Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest on Tuesday closed the area and trails around Klonaqua Lakes in the Alpine Lakes Wilderness because of a lightning-caused wildfire affecting 30 acres.

Designated as the Granite Mountain Fire, it is burning 19 miles west of Leavenworth.

An area of approximately seven square miles is closed to public entry around the fire zone.  Trail closures in

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Comments | More in Northwest, Outdoors, wildfires | Topics: Alpine Lakes Wilderness, Klonaqua Lakes, Leavenworth

May 2, 2013 at 6:00 AM

Get outta town: 3 quick ideas for your weekend (May 3-5)

Floating the Wenatchee River near Cashmere in August 2011. (photo by Joel Hawksley / The Seattle Times)

Floating the Wenatchee River near Cashmere in August 2011. (photo by Joel Hawksley/The Seattle Times)

Is your fridge so cruddy you’d need a hazmat suit to clean it out? Would it be easier just to leave town for the weekend? Here are some good reasons to go:

GO EAST

If you’re ready for a dose of “WINTER IS FINALLY OVER” heat, go east of the Cascades, where temperatures are promised to climb into the 80s this weekend. It’s a good time to go whitewater rafting or tubing on the Wenatchee River. (It’s snowmelt season.) Here’s a line from the website for Leavenworth-based Osprey Rafting Co., describing its “Main Event” float trip: “You’ll survive the bad boy rapids: Rock and Roll, Drunkards’ Drop, Snowblind, and last but not least: THE SUFFOCATOR.” (Bring a snorkel.)

GO SOUTH

Just about everywhere in the Northwest is supposed to be sunny and warm this

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Comments | Topics: Blessing of the Fleet, Ilwaco, Leavenworth