Event includes grand opening of new exhibit on ice age floods
OLYMPIA – June 18, 2014 – Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission invites the public to celebrate the unique geologic heritage of Sun Lakes/Dry Falls State Park near Coulee City at the annual Flood Fest.
The festival is from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, June 28 at the Dry Falls Visitor Center. Flood Fest also celebrates the remarkable Ice Age floods that carved the channeled scablands of eastern Washington.
Visitors will find a variety of educational stations staffed by event partners, including the National Park Service, Ice Age Floods Institute, Coulee Corridor Consortium, Bureau of Reclamation and David Shapiro, author of the popular children’s book “Terra Tempo.” New this year will be the Birds-of-Prey station where visitors can view a live golden eagle and great horned owl.
Three guest speakers are scheduled to present in the Dry Falls Visitor Center Theater:
10 a.m.—Nick Zentner, professor of geology at Central Washington University, discusses how the Grand Coulee and channeled scablands were formed.
1:30 p.m.—Bruce Bjornstad, geologist with the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, discusses the extremely diverse topography created by Ice Age Floods.
3 p.m.— Dr. Robert Weaver, professor of biology at Central Washington University, educates visitors about the reptiles and amphibians that call Grand Coulee home.
“New Interpretations of the Ice Age Floods” Exhibit Opening During this year’s Flood Fest the Dry Falls Visitor Center will host a noon-time grand opening of a new exhibit, “New Interpretations of the Ice Age Floods.” The exhibit explores the geologic history of the Grand Coulee from multiple perspectives, with a focus on the pioneering field work of J Harlen Bretz and the resulting Ice Age flood debate of the 20th century. The exhibit was developed in partnership with the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation and members of the Ice Age Floods Institute.
In addition to the festival, on Sunday, June 29, geologist Bruce Bjornstad will guide a kayak tour of Deep Lake to explore the local geology of Dry Falls of the Grand Coulee by water. The tour will begin at 9 a.m. at the Deep Lake boat launch in Sun Lakes/Dry Falls State Park. Participants will need to supply their own watercraft and life jackets for this event.
A Discover Pass is required to park at the visitor’s center and the boat launch. For more information about the pass, visit: www.parks.wa.gov/167/Discover-Pass-Fees.
For more information about Flood Fest, contact Chris McCart, Interpretive Specialist, Dry Falls Visitor Center, (509) 632-5214 or Dry.Falls@parks.wa.gov.
About the Dry Falls Visitor Center and Sun Lakes – Dry Falls State Park
The Dry Falls Visitor Center opened to the public in 1966 and serves as a primary destination along the four-state Ice Age Floods National Geologic Trail. Sun Lakes-Dry Falls State Park is 4,027-acre camping park located in the heart of the Grand Coulee. The state park offers opportunities to explore this remarkable National Natural Landmark by foot, bike, boat and vehicle.
The visitor center offers Friday night movies and weekend interpretive programs and nature hikes. Visitor Center hours are 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily during the summer months. More information about and directions to Sun Lakes – Dry Falls State Park: www.parks.wa.gov/298/Sun-Lakes-Dry-Falls
About Washington State ParksThe Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission manages more than 100 state parks and properties totaling approximately 120,000 acres. The Commission provides a variety of recreation opportunities for citizens and provides stewardship protection for a diverse array of natural, cultural and historic resources. State Parks’ statewide programs include long-distance trails, boating safety and winter recreation.
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Share your favorite state park adventure on the State Parks’ blog site at www.AdventureAwaits.com.
Support state parks by purchasing your annual Discover Pass today, and enjoy a whole year of outdoor fun on Washington’s beautiful state-managed recreation lands. For more information, visit www.discoverpass.wa.gov.
Media contacts:Toni Droscher (360) 902-8604 Chris McCart (509) 632-5214 Wash. Telecommunications Relay Service: (800) 833-6388