The Ridgefield Art Association will be hosting a brand-new festival this summer in Abrams Park. On August 6th at 11:00am the Ridgefield Forest Fair will open with a tiny parade of dancers from Northwest Classical Ballet courtesy of Dance Fusion NW along with kids of all ages carrying or pulling their tiny gardens. The parade will pass by 30 artisan booths set up in the shade of large fir trees.
After the parade there will be live music from the “UpFront Jazz Band”, Bigfoot Mojo Band, an open mic session then closing the day will be Rekless Kompany.
Ridgefield Lions will be cooking up food and the Ridgefield Main Street organization will be sponsoring a beer and wine garden. The event is free and open until 7pm.
Ridgefield has not had a serious mosquito infestation for several years. We have been in a drought for the past several years. This year we have had a very wet spring. We’ve had almost 15 inches of rain since the beginning of April. The Nortwest has also had an above average snow pack. The Columbia River has been near flood stage the past few weeks. It has put much of the refuge underwater and is now beginning to recede.
Flood mosquitos lay eggs on dry ground in areas likely to flood later. If it doesn’t flood, the eggs can be dormant for years, emerging as larvae when it does flood and when conditions are right. After a week or so, the larva pupate for a few days and then emerge.
The mosquito presence this spring was light. However, during the last few days, they have made a strong presence. They are especally bad near Gee Creek. They are numerous in Abrams Park if you are near the creek. They are most aggresive in the late afternoon and evening.
With the July 4th celebration this weekend visiters to the park need to be prepared. Mosquitos like bare skin. But even uptown mosquitos are going to be present.
In years that mosquitos have been especially bad they were around for much of July with decreasing numbers in August. Flood mosquitos aren’t much for carrying deseases so that’s good. They are just a nuisance. In years they are bad, and this may be one, they can drive people away.
By Paul Snoey
Meaningful Movies of Ridgefield announces their next movie, Bring Her Home.
Bring Her Home follows three Indigenous women as they work to vindicate and honor their relatives who are victims in the growing epidemic of missing and murdered Indigenous women.
Join us for a discussion after the film lead by Duana Johnson, lead administrator for MMIWUSA and Karyn Kameroff, Program Coordinator for the Cowlitz Indian Tribe.
The event will be this Saturday, June 11, at the Old Liberty Theater in Ridgefield, and the movie starts at 7:00pm. Donations are welcome.
The photo above was taken June 6th. It is of Allen Canyon Creek at the bottom of Allen Canyon. My rain gauge says that we had 12 inches in April and May of this year. So far, in June, we have had 0.5″. The ground in both Allen Canyon and Gee Creek watersheds is saturated. Our creeks are showing a high flow. The photo below was taken a year ago on June 5th. It was the day it stopped flowing. 2021 was very much a drought year. Allen Canyon Creek stayed dry until the first rain event in September. We have been in a series of drought years since 2014. With some hot spells, these years were very destructive. The flows in Allen Canyon Creek and Gee Creek have been too low and too warm. Allen Canyon Creek has fared worse since the creek has been going completely dry. In past years, fish could hunker down in pools until flows were restored. There is a good flow in Allen Canyon Creek this year but it’s very lifeless. Gee Creek has done much better because even with low summer flows , it never goes dry.
So, what’s next? The National Weather Service says we could be in for more rain later this week. If so, that will sustain high flows a while longer. The spring greenup this year has been intense. Now that the grass is pollinating those of us suffering from hay fever might find this year to be bad. There are a few mosquitos on the creek now. With it being so wet, it’s possible mosquitos could be bad too. The county mosquito control agency uses a helicopter to drop a bacteria in wet areas to kill larva and they drive a small ATV around town to treat stormwater catch basins. However, with so much standing water providing breeding areas for mosquito larvae, we could be in for an infestation.
Still, all this rain has been very good for our watersheds and the habitat it provides.
By Paul Snoey
Reminder – the Ridgefield Neighborhood Junction meeting is tomorrow, Monday, May 16, at the Dollar Tree Conference Room, 8400 South Union Ridge Parkway, Ridgefield, WA from 7 to 8:30pm.
Come and find out what’s happening in the Ridgefield area.