14th Annual White Salmon River Fest – 2020 dates TBD

The White Salmon River Fest celebrates the White Salmon River, the communities, and the natural and cultural history that surrounds this watershed. This river is an invaluable social, recreational, agricultural and economic resource to those who call it home.

The River Fest aims to gather the local boating and non-boating community together for celebration, education, whitewater rafting and kayaking, food, dance, and more. Founded in 2006 by Wet Planet and traditionally co-hosted with other members from the local river community, this year’s River Fest will be a joint effort including Wet Planet, Yakama Nation Fisheries, SHARE the White Salmon River (Jeanette Burkhardt), the United States Forest Service, and Friends of the White Salmon River.

Since the removal of Condit Dam in 2012, the event’s symposium portion has become the premier resource for the most up-to-date information on the decommission process. The changes occurring in the river canyon as a result of this groundbreaking hydropower removal project are of epic proportions. Join us to learn more about what is happening on your favorite Pacific Northwest River.

2019 White Salmon River Fest and Symposium Schedule:

June 28th

12 PM – Community Rafting Trip on the White Salmon River at Wet Planet Whitewater
Hosted and coordinated by Wet Planet Whitewater for local residents.
For our much appreciated community and local residents! Other local outfitters typically include River Drifters, All Adventures, Wild Water, and All Star Rafting. $35 per person includes entrance to the BBQ & symposium. Reservations required here or by calling 1.800.306.1673.

3:30 PM- 6 PM: Kids’ Activities & BBQ at the Husum Fire Station
On the Community Rafting Trip, you will surely work up an appetite. That’s why we’re hosting the community BBQ and kids’ activities after the float. Cost is $10, or free if you raft on the Community Rafting Trip.

6 PM – 9 PM: Symposium at the Husum Fire Station
The perfect opportunity to ask questions, interact, and visit informational tables representing local organizations.

Recommended donation is $10, or free if you raft on the Community Rafting Trip or pay for the BBQ.

Speakers and topics include:

· Gardner Johnston from Inter-Fluve speaking about the importance of wood in rivers.
· Ian Jezorek from the US Geological Survey speaking about Salmonid Monitoring in the White Salmon River Following Condit Dam Removal.
· Caitlin Scott, a fisheries biotech in Parkdale, speaking about the importance of beavers to ecosystems and projects like the Methow Beaver Project and the Yakima Basin Beaver Project, and how beaver could benefit the White Salmon river.
· Elaine Harvey will tell a local cultural history.
· Henkle Middle School Students with videos about the Condit Dam removal.
· Casey Andrews from the US Forest Service about the importance of Wild & Scenic Rivers.
· Pat Arnold from Friends of the White Salmon River talking about the White Salmon Shoreline Plan.


6:00-6:15 Welcome, Introduction: Jeanette Burkhardt, Yakama Nation Fisheries/SHARE6:15-6:30 Henkle Middle School students (Charlie Hooper, Che Tillinghast, Justin Kuneki): Condit Dam Video Project

6:30-6:55 Ian Jezorek, USGS: The River Re-Wild: Juvenile Anadromous Salmonid Monitoring in the White Salmon River Following Condit Dam Removal

6:55-7:15 Elaine Harvey, YN Fisheries, Rock Creek Band: The White Salmon River’s cultural importance to the Yakama Nation from the headwaters to the confluence

7:15-7:35 Break — short update on PacifiCorp’s Condit Dam decommissioning at end of break

7:45-8:05 Caitlin Scott and Margaret Neuman: Beavers: Building Ecosystems and Fighting Climate Change

8:05-8:25 Gardner Johnston, Interfluve: Wood in Rivers

8:25-8:45 Casey Andrews, USFS and Pat Arnold, Friends of the White Salmon River: Importance of Wild and Scenic Rivers and White Salmon Shoreline Plan

8:45-9:00 Open Forum: Q & A, discussion

Tabling organizations:
• Friends of the White Salmon River • CultureSeed • SHARE the White Salmon River • Mid-Columbia Fisheries Enhancement Group (Beavers)

• Columbia River Gorge Commission • Underwood Conservation District • USFS • WA Dept. of Ecology

June 29th

10 AM – 1 PM : River Clean Ups and Service Projects
Hosted by Yakama Nation Fisheries / SHARE the White Salmon River (Jeanette Burkhardt), the United State Forest Service and Friends of the White Salmon River
Bring your friends and family and spend a day cleaning up and enjoying the White Salmon’s beautiful river banks. There will be several river side locations to help out at, including the restoration site at Northwestern Park, BZ Falls, and Trout Lake. More site information to come.

Want to help with a cleanup? Show up at the BZ Boat launch at 10am to join the BZ river clean up. (Please try to RSVP to Casey at casey.andrews@usda.gov )

10 AM – 1 PM: Green Truss Kayak Race
Registration will take place at the event check in. More information available at the event’s Facebook page.  

3:30 PM: Stoke Float Kayak Lap on the Middle White Salmon River

BZ Boat Launch

6:30 PM – 10:00 PM Truss Race Awards & Festival Closing Celebration

Logs Inn, BZ Corner — Truss Race Awards Ceremony, Food, Music & Dancing

Donations are appreciated for individual events. Proceeds will go to SHARE White Salmon River Organization and Friends of the White Salmon River.

History of the Festival

The annual White Salmon River Fest and Symposium began as a Headwaters Institute seminar, created by Wet Planet co-owner Jaco Klinkenberg in 2006. The vision and goal for the annual event has always been increase the knowledge and awareness of the river system for local professional river guides, boaters and extended community members by bringing the whole community together, build bridges, provide fun informational and educational events, while also giving back to the community by including service projects, and free or affordable river events concluded with a celebrating party at the end.

Please contact us (info@wetplanetwhitewater or jaco@wetplanetwhitewater.com) if you or your company would like to participate, support and/or help facilitate this year’s event. We would love volunteers and supporters from all over the river community!

Follow us on Facebook for more updates!