When most people think of Washington, they first imagine Seattle or Spokane. But our Northwest state is so much more than just the big cities – we’re home to tons of charming small towns, too! In fact, our tiny communities are the best place to grow up – here are 11 reasons why:
1. Tree climbing was ten times more fun growing up in the Evergreen state.
And going for short hikes with your older siblings or parents always made for an adventure.
2. Everything you needed (and more) could be found at the general store right up the street.
Out of milk? Bread? Candy bars? No problem. Our local Mom & Pop shops had everything we really needed to get by, so there was no use for all those huge corporate stores in the big cities.
3. Berry picking was something we could always look forward to.
With so many fresh berry farms around our state, there was nothing more fun than a warm spring or summer afternoon filling up a basket by picking your own blueberries, blackberries, cherries or raspberries. Come fall, we could go pick apples and pumpkins.
4. There weren't many entertainment options, but there was still always something to do.
It might have been a little disappointing when your favorite bands would never come out and perform near your small town, and driving anywhere fun took at least a half hour, but there was still plenty of excitement to be found in our own backyard.
5. Some of the most delightful parades, festivals and events are held in our state's smaller towns.
All year long you can find celebrations going on in our state's small towns, like Vikingfest in Poulsbo, Oysterfest in Shelton, and the '49er Days Festival in Winthrop - to name a few.
6. We could Do The Puyallup!
The Washington State Fair is held annually in Puyallup and features some of the most exhilarating rides and carnival games. Our fair continually ranks in the top ten largest in the United States, so you know we always had a great time.
7. If you were lucky enough to get cable television, we had some spectacular local shows to watch.
The J.P. Patches Show may have aired in Seattle, but we had plenty of Patches Pals in the surrounding areas, too. You might also remember staying up late to watch
Almost Live! with John Keister, Pat Cashman, Joel McHale and Bill Nye.
8. We weren't far from a beautiful lake or river to go swimming.
And if it had a dock, small bridge, or cliff where you could jump off into the water during the summer... even better.
9. We could go hunting for geoducks.
If you grew up by the coast, you may have fond memories digging for these clams by the beach. Even if you didn't hunt your own, you still may have learned about the fascinating creatures in school (and their correct pronunciation).
10. If it snowed during the winter, we could go sledding.
We could build snowmen, have snowball fights, go skiing, snowboarding, or just find a huge hill to sled down and it would make for a memorable afternoon.
11. And you could always count on being able to catch a stunning view of the mountains in a small town.
Who needs to see a bunch of tall city buildings when we have so many magnificent peaks surrounding us? Between the Olympics and Cascades, a breathtaking sight of the mountains will never grow old - which is why small towns in Washington will always be home.