The cities of Kennewick, Pasco, and Richland (and West Richland) comprise the Tri-Cities located in southeastern Washington State. The cities meet at the confluence of three rivers: the Yakima, Snake, and mighty Columbia and when combined with 300 days of sunshine, provide an aquatic playground that is second to none. Paired with the abundance of educational and recreational opportunities available, the Tri-Cities is an ideal destination for your family-friendly vacation. Known for its stable economy and atmosphere, the Tri-Cities was recently rated by Kiplinger among the Top 10 best places to raise a family, and CNN/Money ranked the Tri-Cities one of the top 10 best bets for gains in housing value.
The Sacagawea Heritage Trail is a 23-mile, paved, loop trail that runs along the Columbia River and through the cities of Kennewick, Pasco, and Richland. Families can enjoy Pompy’s Lessons, markers that line the trail and offer families the chance to learn more about flora, fauna, and the history of Lewis and Clark while biking or strolling along the trail.
Kennewick’s Columbia Park Family Fishing Pond was the first warm-water family fishing pond developed in Washington State. It is a great place to discover several species of warm-water fish. A walking trail loops around the pond, and interpretive signage help identify the fish.
Adjacent to the Family Fishing Pond, stands the Playground of Dreams, a unique 12,000 square foot playground. The Playground of Dreams features local landmarks and attractions as well as components requested by local elementary school children, including a pirate ship, dragon slide, castle maze, rocket, rope wall, and many others.
The Aquatic Splash Park, located near the Playground of Dreams and Family Fishing Pond, has a series of jets that will spout water in an ever-changing array of streams, spurts, sprays and splashes.
The Sturgeon Cove Playground in Richland’s Howard Amon Park is a gently landscaped, central play area for kids of all ages. The playground features a 16-foot Sturgeon-shaped play structure, a large, steam boat play structure, a tot lot with a colorful tugboat, sand and water play area, see-saw and spinning toys, large slide, and zip-line.
In the Tri-Cities family activities are a top priority. The Three Rivers Children’s Museum, the Columbia River Exhibition of History, Science and Technology (CREHST), McNary National Wildlife Refuge Environmental Education Center; and Ice Harbor Dam provide stimulating learning environments for all ages. With interactive exhibits and hands-on displays, children learn about history, science, the world and the environment.
Known as “The Heart of Washington Wine Country,” the Tri-Cities region houses more than 160 wineries within a 50 mile radius. Visitors can sample award winning wines, or enjoy breathtaking views of beautiful vineyards.
Youth recreation is year-round fun with ice-hockey and figure skating, roller skating, youth fishing, wildlife refuges, nature trails and three skateboard parks.
Average Daily Temperature on this Event: Average high is 89 degrees / low is 61 degrees
Body of Water:Columbia River (Snake and Yakima Rivers feed into the Columbia River as well)
Things to do:Wine tasting, golf, jet boat or kayak tour of the Hanford Reach National Monument, wildlife watching, sailing, pleasure boating, water skiing, and wakeboarding, hiking along the 23-mile Sacagawea Heritage Trail or up Badger Mountain Centennial Preserve
Historical Trivia about the locale: This is where Lewis and Clark discovered the Columbia River, knowing they were on the right track to the Pacific Ocean; Rattlesnake Mountain is the tallest treeless mountain in the western hemisphere; During boat races in 1996, “Kennewick Man” was found along the shores of the Columbia River. The skeleton dates back 9,200+ years
Best Race Viewing Spot:Excellent viewing is available along the banks of either side of the Columbia River