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SULTAN  WEATHER
Temperature: 54.9°F | Humidity: 96% | Pressure: 29.81in (Steady) | Conditions: Partly Cloudy | Wind Direction: SSE | Wind Speed: 0.0mph
SULTAN

RETURN OF THE SALMON FESTIVAL IN SULTAN THIS WEEKEND
September 25, 2015




Stature of Chief John Sultan at Osprey Park in Sultan. Chronicle photo. CLICK TO ENLARGE
This report was originally published Sept. 23 as a front page Chronicle feature story.

(SULTAN, WA.)  ---  You can tell that Fall is in the air not just by the cool evenings and the start of the rainy season here in the foothills of the Cascade mountains.

You know it's here by the annual Return of the Salmon Celebration in Sultan. The event honors and commemorates the salmon that left their birth river in Sultan as small fingerlings and are back now as adults to spawn, continuing the circle of life. 

This year the annual event is Sat. Sept. 26 from 11 am to 4 pm at Osprey Park, 801 First Street.

It's fun for the whole family and features vendors, educational tours, native American culture, arts, music (flute concert and drumming and round dance), story telling, horse drawn covered wagon rides to the high school fish hatchery, a raffle and more.

There's also the 2nd annual 5K salmon run and 1 mile fast walk that start at 10 am. Registration, with a $20 entry fee for the run ($10 for the walk) is open from 9:15 to 9:55 am in Osprey Park. There will be prizes and commemorative T-shirts. The course winds through the scenic river paths in Osprey Park.

Festivities begin with a Native American welcoming ceremony which features an honoring of Sultan’s namesake, Chief T’seul-ted whose statue has been a fixture in Osprey Park for many years.

HISTORY BEHIND RETURN OF THE SALMON

The history of Sultan, a community where whites first settled around 1880 but for centuries before that was settled by Native Americans, is where water and salmon are forever linked to logging and mining in the valley.

In days gone by the Skykomish River, which runs parallel to Sultan, was a major transportation, trade and supply corridor. 

There were trade boats, fishing boats, pleasure craft and transportation boats moving up and down the Skykomish much as cars do now on State Route 2, the road to Stevens Pass, which itself runs parallel to the town and the river.

Both the Sultan River and the town of Sultan were named by white prospectors for the highly respected Chief of a 
Snohomish sub-tribe that lived on the Skykomish River in the 1870s. 

His name was Tsul-tad or Tseul-tud, a name which was anglicized by the miners of the time into "Sultan" as they could not pronounce Tseul-tud.

To the white settlers he became known as Sultan John or Chief John Sultan. The town and the area prospered during the 1870's and beyond with gold discoveries as well as logging activities.

Throughout the community's early history both new settlers and Native Americans depended upon the salmon in the Skykomish and Sultan Rivers both for sustenance and for trade purposes. The salmon was a giver and sustainer of life, an important partner in the cycle of life and death for all living things.

The salmon was also a "marker" of home and community.

Thus the community provides the special remembrance called "Return of the Salmon Celebration."

The festival is a the result of a partnership between the City of Sultan, the Tulalip Tribes, Sky Valley Chamber of Commerce, Snohomish County Public Utility District (PUD) and a committee of dedicated community volunteers.






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