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STOCKTON FWO: FWSOrganizes SecondStanislaus River Salmon Festival
California-Nevada Offices , November 14, 2010
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USFWS biologists provide temporary salmon tattoos to children attending the festival.  Photo credit: Ramon Martin, USFWS
USFWS biologists provide temporary salmon tattoos to children attending the festival. Photo credit: Ramon Martin, USFWS - Photo Credit: n/a
Proud award winners from the salmon festival art calendar contest. Photo credit: Ramon Martin, USFWS
Proud award winners from the salmon festival art calendar contest. Photo credit: Ramon Martin, USFWS - Photo Credit: n/a

By J.D. Wikert, Stockton FWO

On Nov. 14, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service staff took the lead in organizing a festival to celebrate the return of fall-run Chinook salmon to the Stanislaus River in California. The second annual event featured a number of interactive activities, and focused on providing opportunities to connect children with nature. 

Approximately 3,000 people attended the event, doubling last year’s attendance. 

Partnerships with agencies, consultants, non-profits, and other organizations made the event a success. The East Stanislaus Resource Conservation District, Modesto Junior College, The Great Valley Museum, California Department of Fish and Game, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers played key roles in organizing the event.

The event offered a variety of opportunities for outdoor education including watching otoliths (ear bones) being removed from salmon carcasses, a challenging salmon obstacle course, fly-fishing demonstrations,  salmon egg bracelets and tattoos, watching salmon  spawn in the river, and making your own Gyotaku (fish print) t-shirts.

The event included a salmon art contest among K-6 schools from the local community. The winning art was included in a festival calendar that was sold at the event.  The calendar included local events and descriptions of salmon life history by month.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Knights Ferry Park museum showed videos about salmon and rivers and offered interpretive displays about the areas natural history.  Freshly cooked salmon was offered at bargain prices by the Lions Club, 4H provided hot dogs, and the Knights Ferry School conducted a bake sale.

In addition to organizing the event, USFWS staff provided information on salmon, restoration, monitoring, and aquatic nuisance species, and helped out with exhibitor setup/cleanup, and directed traffic. 


Contact Info: Ramon Martin, 209-334-2968 ext. 401, ramon_martin@fws.gov



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