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Happy half-birthday, Poulsbo

Centennial

city hits midway

mark of 100th

incorporated year.

POULSBO — The start of July marks the midpoint in Poulsbo’s centennial celebration, meaning the starred year is now halfway complete. But the 100-year-old city won’t be sitting on its laurels for the latter portion of its party.

Still to come are a downtown street dance, two park jamborees and a final winter gala, each of which centennial committee members are boasting to be “once in a lifetime events.”

“It’s going to be great,” committee member Carly Michelson said. “We only turn 100 once.”

Next up is an August dance on Front Street celebrating all 10 of the city’s incorporated decades. Proceeds from that event will go toward a centennial sculpture to be dedicated at the grand opening of Centennial Park in September — an event to be held in conjunction with the Greater Poulsbo Chamber of Commerce’s Americana Music Festival at Raab Park. Winding down the season will be a harvest festival at Poulsbo’s Fish Park and Nelson Park, with nature trail tours, wildlife education and a salmon barbecue on the menu. Finally, a closing winter gala mirroring the opening gala in January will commemorate the end of the year.

“It’s everything and more that I had hoped our centennial would be,” said committee chair Connie Lord. “It was just a date on the radar screen a few years ago. Now it’s here, we’re halfway through it, it’s already been fun and I just expect it’s going to build on itself.”

Lord said the event has served to raise awareness of the Viking City’s heritage, and has proven a boost for the Poulsbo Historical Society, along with laying some history of its own.

She described the anticipated centennial sculpture, which will be placed at the corner of Seventh Avenue and Iverson Street, as “organic” and “very much in keeping with the natural setting that we’re trying to preserve.”

Michelson said the street dance is shaping up to be a fun family event. Participants are encouraged — though not required — to dress up in their favorite old time era, and music will range from the dance numbers of the 1940s and 50s to modern day rock ‘n roll. Celebrating on one of Poulsbo’s first streets is just another way the committee is hoping to spur a 100-year birthday party that commemorates how far Little Norway has come, Michelson said.

And getting in costume sure doesn’t hurt.

“I think a lot of people like that excuse to do that every once in a while,” she said.

She added the event is one in which the committee hopes all business owners, merchants and vendors citywide take part.

“We’re bringing everyone into one spot and we’re encouraging everyone to participate in any way they can,” she said. “We’re working as a team to put this together as a community.”

The centennial committee is selling T-shirts, long-sleeved shirts and pins to help fund the events. The memorabilia can be purchased at Poulsbo’s City Hall.

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