The future of the Puyallup Fish Hatchery was in a perilous situation last year. The state Department of Fish and Wildlife said in May 2012 that it would sell the hatchery to Pacific Seafood, a private commercial buyer.
But Puyallup residents quickly reached out to legislators to help rescue the hatchery.
Pacific Seafood backed out of the deal, and the Puyallup Historical Hatchery Foundation was born. The foundation celebrated its one-year anniversary as a nonprofit on Aug. 19.
“We want to get up and running in the next year,” said Diana Martin, the vice president of the foundation’s board of directors. “Our goal is to get some more membership and keep working on it.”
So far, the foundation has placed the hatchery on the Washington Heritage Register of Historic Places and received a $5,000 grant from the Muckleshoot Indian Tribe that was used to replace the netting over the 16 trout ponds.
In recent months, foundation members have begun design work on an education center located in the duplex on the hatchery property.
“The South Hill Lowe’s and the Bonney Lake Lowe’s have donated all the materials for the education center,” Martin said. “Lowe’s donated the materials for the ADA bathroom. DBI Construction is donating the labor to build the ADA ramp for the education center.”
On Aug. 17, foundation members and Lowe’s employees volunteered to paint the inside.
“We’re trying to get flooring in there that will hold up with a lot of traffic,” Martin said. “We’re looking at different kinds of flooring right now.”
Blue Sky Landscaping for donated the landscaping design, Martin said. Other donations include $2,500 from Korum Kids Foundation; a 70 tons of gravel from Corliss Resources; labor by Interior Millwork Design; and storage space for materials from Fife You Store It.
The foundation hopes to have a grand opening for the education center in late September, in time for school students to visit, Martin said.
“We want to let the schools know when it opens so they can bring their classes down to the hatchery,” she said.
Martin said the foundation needs a 64- to 70-inch flat screen TV for the education center. She added the foundation is looking for a production company or students interested in videography to film a historical documentary about the hatchery.
“We want to have a looping video that tells about the history of the hatchery, and how the hatchery works,” Martin said. “We hope to have interactive displays and places to sit inside where visitors can watch the video.”
• $15 for students, senior citizens or active members of the military
• $25 per individual
• $40 per family
• $85 for nonprofit or small business
• $150 for a corporation
For more information, call Patty Carter at 253-640-1376. To provide in-kind donations or other support, call Diana Martin at 253-370-0725.Reporter Andrew Fickes can be reached at 253-552-7001 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter, @herald_andrew.