Three Things Thursday

It’s Thursday again!

Time for Three Things Thursday, the purpose of which is to “share three things from the previous week that made you smile or laugh or appreciate the awesome of your life.”

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Trip to Leavenworth, WA

Since moving to Tacoma we’ve traveled along the West Coast between Seattle and San Francisco, but we haven’t yet gone inland from here into eastern Washington State. One of our new neighbors, a life-long Tacoma resident, suggested that Leavenworth would be a good place to visit. So when Franke Tobey Jones offered a three-day, two-night trip to Leavenworth, we jumped on the opportunity.

Leavenworth is located in the foothills of the Cascade Mountains, about 120 miles east of Seattle. It’s Washington’s Bavarian Village, with most buildings in town decorated with ornate woodwork and murals of Bavarian motifs. In summer the buildings and grounds in the city are ablaze with full-color flower displays.

(Click on any photo to see a larger version.)

1. Bavarian Lodge

Bavarian Lodge
Bavarian Lodge

We stayed at the Bavarian Lodge, which epitomizes the city’s identity with its painted decorations and flower boxes. Our room was large, the bed was comfortable, and the free breakfast was delicious.

2. Decorated Building

Decorated Building, Leavenworth
Decorated Building, Leavenworth

Imagine a town full of buildings similar to this one and you’ll visualize Leavenworth. The paintings on the buildings were fascinating. The many stores carry a variety of items, from typical tourist souvenirs to hand-crafted cuckoo clocks and music boxes, nutcrackers, Dresden china, and artwork by local artists. There’s even a nutcracker museum, although we did not get a chance to visit it. Behind the building you can see the steep, rocky Cascade foothills.

With its Bavarian village setting, Leavenworth obviously caters to tourists. For outdoors folks there are nearby centers for hiking, climbing, biking, skiing, snowmobiling, kayaking, and horseback riding. Leavenworth is beautiful in summer, but it also offers lots of festivals and events during other seasons, including the following: Ice Fest, Christmas Lighting, Wine Walk, Maifest, Autumn Leaf Festival, Oktoberfest, Salmon Festival.

The highway to Leavenworth passes through Stevens Pass, elevation 4,061 feet, the site of a winter downhill and cross-country ski resort. Stevens Pass is often closed in winter when there’s snow in the Cascade Mountains, so plan accordingly if you decide to go in winter.

3. Eagle Creek Winery

Vineyards, Eagle Creek Winery
Vineyards, Eagle Creek Winery

We also had a wine tasting and tour at Eagle Creek Winery just outside the center of town. The heat and soil make the region a perfect place for growing grapes. We liked several of their wines and came away with six bottles.

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We also attended a production of the play Into the Woods by the Leavenworth Summer Theater at their outdoor venue, Ski Hill Amphitheater. (No photography allowed there—sorry.)

Overall, the trip to Leavenworth was delightful. We hope to return on our own sometime. And now that we’re retired, it won’t even matter if we get snowed in.

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