Kokanee Salmon Festival returns to Taylor Creek Visitor Center

Contact(s): Jean Norman 530-543-2674


21st annual celebration first weekend in October

United States Forest Service shieldSouth Lake Tahoe, Calif., --Just as cool weather returns to the Lake Tahoe Basin every year, so does the annual Kokanee Salmon Festival. This fall marks the 21st year the Taylor Creek Visitor Center will host the celebration. The event takes place the weekend of Oct. 2 and 3, from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. The Taylor Creek Visitor Center is located three miles north of the City of South Lake Tahoe on Highway 89.

This free family event encourages participation by children and their parents in a wide variety of educational and entertaining events. Participants can learn about the natural wonders of Taylor Creek and take part in many fun activities, including a delicious salmon barbecue, Kokanee trail runs, children’s activities, educational and streamside programs, and much more!

Wild Things returns Saturday afternoon at 2 p.m. in the Lake of the Sky amphitheater. This free program features live animals that may include a black bear, bald eagle, barn owl, turkey vulture, a beaver, and snakes. Because of the live animals on stage, attendees are asked to leave their dogs and other pets at home. New to the festival this year is a giant 40 foot inflatable fish for children to explore. "Sammy Salmon", the official mascot of the festival, will make appearances each day.

Both Saturday and Sunday, visitors can learn about the natural wonders of Taylor Creek from Forest Service biologists, as they stroll along the accessible Rainbow Trail. This peaceful walk meanders through forests, meadows and marsh lands to the creek where the Kokanee Salmon spawn within a few feet of your own feet. A close-up view of this natural event is available in the underground Stream Profile Chamber located along the Rainbow Trail.

With the popularity of the Kokanee Salmon Festival at the Taylor Creek Visitor Center and the Oktoberfest at Historic Camp Richardson Resort, which occurs the same weekend, the parking lot at the Visitor Center fills quickly. Visitors are encouraged to ride a bike or walk along the bike path between Camp Richardson and the Visitor Center or take public transportation from South Lake Tahoe. BlueGo and the Nifty Fifty trolley will provide special service for these events and may be reached by calling (530) 541-7149.

Numerous sponsors and volunteers make this annual event possible. All proceeds from T-shirt sales, festival pin sales, and the run events benefit the environmental education programs sponsored by the U.S. Forest Service in the Lake Tahoe Basin.

For more information and a complete schedule of activities, contact the Taylor Creek Visitor Center at 530-543-2674 or visit our web page: http://fs.usda.gov/goto/ltbmu/KokaneeSalmonFestival.

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