On August 7, we made the short drive to Richland, Washington. This was the day after my birthday, which is significant because the town of Richland is where I was born, 56 years ago. I was going to tour the area with my mother, father my aunt and Kim. I had last been to the area about 25 years ago. The amount of development and growth in the area is amazing. You can still see the original houses built by the government to house all of the workers for the nearby Hanford project, but there are many new sections that look like any other American city. We stopped by the first house I can remember. The stories and memories came flooding back to both me and my parents. I loved hearing the stories.
We went by schools and churches that were a significant part of my life back when I was very young. More stories and memories.
We then went to a new visitor center for the Hanford Reach. This is the area that was once the area that developed the material that was used in the atomic bombs at the end of WW2 in 1945. My father worked there from 1953 to 1968. At the time they did all of the work out there, they knew they were creating an environmental problem, but that would have to wait until the war was won. The cleanup of the area has been the biggest environmental cleanup in history. The good news is that what is left is a wildlife preserve and the last unchanged stretch of the Columbia river. Dad really enjoyed visiting the center and he told a number of stories about the project. He knew many of the people in the exhibits. Here is a shot of Mom and Dad at the center.
We then headed back to Prosser because Mom and Dad had the reunion banquet that evening. We had a relaxing evening at the RV park.
On Friday evening, August 8, they local wine growers association had a banquet honoring a guy that had been instramental in the local wine growing industry. I had not been to a banquet since I was working, but it was an enjoyable evening. We enjoyed hearing the stories from the other growers and we had a great meal and of course, lots of wine. Here is a shot of my Mom and Dad and myself.
Mom and Aunt Elizabeth.
While we were there, Kim went outside an saw an amazing sunset. I rushed outside and got a few good shots.
We still had one more day in Prosser. The wine and food festival was on Saturday and Dad had purchased tickets for us. I will write about that in my next entry.