Sunday, July 3, 2016

Day 16: Seattle, WA

The crew was given a special treat this morning: breakfast in the restaurant at the top of the Space Needle. As we indulged in fresh fruit, mini muffins, ham, scrambled eggs, hash browns, and fresh squeezed juices it seemed the world turned around us. The restaurant slowly spins 360 degrees every 47 minutes giving up the patrons inside a wonderful aerial view of Seattle and the surrounding Cascade and Olympic Mountains. On a clear day the snow capped Mount Rainier can be seen in the distance. After breakfast the tour members were allowed to walk up one story to the observation deck where they could walk outside for an even better Birdseye view of the city from 520 feet. The students enjoyed playing with the interactive maps, adding their names to the guestbook, and seeing what people from their town had checked in at the needle previously.
(Breakfast at the Space Needle)
(They were excited for breakfast in such a beautiful setting)
(500 feet above the ground)
(Overlooking the city and the sound)
(They liked being inside where it was warm)
(Signing the guestbook and seeing who they know who has visited the Needle)

A few hours of the day were then spent on a bus tour of the city with a private guide to narrate. We drove through many neighborhoods of Seattle including Belltown, Center City, and Fremont. In Fremont we stopped at Theo's chocolate factory for some free samples. The group got off the bus at the Locks to take a guided tour. Students got to see boats enter the locks from Union Lake and be lowered to sea-level to go out into the sound. We also got to witness some salmon climbing back up the salmon ladder to move from the sound back into the lake. Every year salmon migrate from the ocean back to the place they were born to lay eggs and then die. The babies then swim back out to sea to live their life. Many salmon in Seattle are chipped to help record their movements and control the population. Since the dam was built to control the levels in Lake Union the city created the Salmon ladder to help the salmon with migration.
(At the Lake Union dam and locks)
(Smile even though it's cold!)
(They find dogs to pet everywhere they go!)
(Learning about the salmon ladder)
(While waiting for the locks to fill and move the boats.)

The group tour ended at Pike's Place Market where the group got to see the famous fish throwing, the gum wall, and the oldest Starbucks. We then had free time in small  groups to explore more of the market and downtown Seattle. 
(At the Pike's Place market)
(Enjoying the market)
(In front of the oldest Starbucks)
(Spending free time enjoying the view of the Space Needle..and napping a bit.)
(Giant sculptures make fun places to hang out)
(Climbing on the sculptures)

Dinner tonight was as a group as Ivar's Salmon House which sits right on the shore of Lake Union. The group had a choice of chicken or salmon (most went for the salmon). Stuffed we went outside after dinner to enjoy the sunset over the lake with the city and Space Needle close in the background. 



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