Tours - Wednesday September 26, 2018

Hows & Whys of the Apple Industry

Wednesday, September 26.  12:45 PM-4:30 PM

Cost:  $40.00

Host: Suzanne Sorom 

Transportation by Wenatchee Shuttle. Pick up/drop off at the Convention Center parking lot.

Welcome to Wenatchee, "Apple Capital of the World"!  Discover the secret of how fresh apples can be enjoyed year-round, rather than just during fall harvest. 

This apple industry tour visits the Wenatchee Museum and Cultural Center to view a 1920 vintage apple cleaner and sorter and learn about Wenatchee’s place in the history of “controlled atmosphere storage" for fruit.    

Then find out about fruit processing machines used around the world from designer and developer Van Doren Sales, Inc.  You'll be amazed viewing the process of how thousands of just harvested apples are washed, waxed and sorted by a Van Doren 6 Lane Spectrim Compac sorter in a modern warehouse operation. 

The final stop of our tour is Snowdrift Cider Company where you'll meet Peter Ringsrud, orchardist and cider maker. Visit his orchard and learn about apples grown for eating, cooking and cider production. Taste the difference between a dessert apple and an apple grown for cider plus other treats. 1 CE credit available. 

East Meets West: Touring Three Public Gardens

Wednesday, September 26.  1:15 PM-5:00 PM

Cost:  $25.00 

Host: Connie Fliegel

Transportation by Wenatchee Shuttle. Pick up/drop off at the Convention Center parking lot. 


Join us for an informative afternoon visiting three delightful gardens maintained for the enjoyment and education of the Wenatchee Valley Community.  

The firewise garden designed and planted by WSU Master Gardeners in partnership with Douglas County Fire District 2 and located at the East Wenatchee Fire Station illustrates the importance of landscaping to reduce the risk of property loss due to wildfire.  

Tour the Japanese Garden, a partnership with the City of East Wenatchee to learn about its connection with Misawa, our sister city in Japan. We will also share the challenges of maintaining a Japanese style landscape in an arid environment. 

Final destination is the Community Education Garden, the WSU Chelan/Douglas County Master Gardener's premier demonstration garden and outdoor classroom.  Enjoy refreshments in the shade of the pergola. Tour the landscape to learn about the garden objectives as you stroll along the paths. Gardens include Welcome Garden, Native Plants ‘n More, Rose Garden, Deer Resistant Garden, Vegetable Garden, Dahlia Garden, Butterfly Garden, Homer's Garden (honoring the past), Sun and Shadow Garden, Compost Station and Winnie the Pig Garden (focusing on whimsy and art in the landscape.) 2 CE credits available. 

A Walk in the Shrub-Steppe Foothills

Wednesday, September 26.  10:45 AM-1:15 PM 

Cost: $35 

Host: Michelle Housden  

Transportation by Wenatchee Shuttle. Pick up/drop off at the Convention Center parking lot. 

Explore Wenatchee's beautiful foothills and learn about shrub-steppe plant ecology.   This is a field trip introduction to the Chelan-Douglas Land Trust (CDLT) Jacobson Preserve trail led by biologist and educator Susan Ballinger. Susan holds Master's degrees in Biology and Education and is the founder of the Wenatchee Naturalist Master Naturalist program co-sponsored by CDLT and Wenatchee Valley College Continuing Education.  She has been exploring the Jacobson Preserve for more than 25 years.    

Learn about shrub-steppe native grasses, shrubs, and wildflowers with a focus on key identifying characteristics and their ecological adaptations to a harsh environment.  Threats to shrub-steppe communities including non-native weeds and increased wildfire frequency will be discussed, as well as field guides and other resources for future learning and enjoyment.  

The walk will be on uneven ground, with a 500 to 600-foot elevation gain. We will walk at a slow pace, stopping frequently, with the round trip covering less than 2 miles. 

Be prepared for changing weather conditions and for intense sun. A long-sleeved shirt, long pants, sun hat, sunglasses and an extra layer of clothing are recommended. There are no restrooms on the trail. Snack and water will be provided.   2 CE credits available 

Wildfire Recovery Tour

Wednesday, September 26.  12:45 PM-5:00 PM 

Cost: $39

Hosts: Connie Mehmel  and Casey Leigh

Transportation by Wenatchee Shuttle. Pick up/drop off at the Convention Center parking lot. 

Learn about landscape resilience to wildfires on this half-day tour led by forester Connie Mehmel and WSU Master Gardener Casey Leigh.  A 20-mile bus ride along the Columbia River to Entiat will take us to the Columbia Breaks Fire Interpretive Center.  Conceived in the early 1990s, Columbia Breaks is the world’s first center for education, training, research and interpretation of wildland fire.   

Its mission is to “inform people of all ages of the historic impact and ecological role of wildland fire; the interaction of fire with human culture; the role of wildland fire agencies in fire management; and how the public can prevent/reduce the impact of wildfires.”   

This 17 ½-acre parcel includes 3 restored fire lookouts; a 1/3-mile interpretive trail with informational signs about fire ecology, plant ecology, fire behavior, fire history, fire management and peoples' interaction with fire; informational kiosks; a meeting shelter; an amphitheater and portable stage; and an office which houses educational material.   

After walking the trail and checking out the lookouts, we will visit the shelter for further discussion on how plants recover after fire.  Time permitting, we will bus 3 miles up the Entiat River to Mills Canyon, viewing firsthand what recovery has occurred at this site of a 22,000-acre wildfire in 2014.  1 CE credit available

Winery Tour and Gourmet Lunch

Wednesday, September 26.  11:45 AM-3:30 PM 

Cost: $50 

Host: Bobette Bush  

Transportation by Wenatchee Shuttle. Pick up/drop off at the Convention Center parking lot. 

Relax and enjoy lunch among the vines at Malaga Springs Winery located at the base of the basalt cliffs of Cathedral Rock. 

Learn about viticulture and the uniqueness of this terroir from co-owner Al Mathews as you tour the vineyard and production building.  

Stroll through the extensive gardens that are part of the winery, led by co-owner Kathy Lee.  Gather information on the culture of fruit trees, exotics, berries, succulents, cacti, shrubs and natives that grow successfully in this unique climate.


Enjoy a lunch al fresco on the winery patio, with an omnivore or vegetarian Vietnamese Bahn Mi Baguette sandwich prepared by WSU Master Gardener and gourmet chef Lynn Palmer, using locally sourced produce, meats and baked goods. The sandwich will be paired with a selection of wines. 

You may enjoy full tastings and bottles of wine in the Tasting Room at additional cost.  1 CE credit available

Tours/bonus class - Thursday, September 27, 2018

Along the Waterfront Walking Tour

Thursday, September 27.  9:30 AM-11:00 AM 

Cost: $15 

Host: Jan Clark

Meet at Convention Center


Join us for a morning walking tour that will introduce you to some of downtown Wenatchee’s best destinations.  Starting from the Convention Center, we will visit the Wenatchee Chamber office where you can gather information about other places you can visit while here in our beautiful valley.  

A walk across the pedestrian bridge will lead us through the Sculpture Garden, an integral part of the Art on the Avenues impressive 88 piece sculpture exhibit. From there we will stroll through the Xeric Demonstration Garden. Located on the Loop Trail along the Columbia River, this garden was developed and is maintained by local Master Gardeners for year round beauty. 

Our final destination will be the Pybus Market - a reclaimed steel mill that both locals and visitors flock to for good food, artisan shops, wine tasting, farmers market, and more.  Here you can choose from several good eateries for lunch on your own. It’s a short 10 minute walk from Pybus Market back to the Convention Center. 

Good Morning at the Community Education Garden

Thursday, September 27.  9:30 AM-11:00 AM 

Cost:  $15 

Host: Connie Fliegel

Transportation:   Transportation is on your own. 1100 N. Western Ave., Wenatchee, only a few miles from the Convention Center.

Welcome to the Community Education Garden, our premier demonstration garden and outdoor classroom. Meet some of the volunteers who have been creating, developing and maintaining this garden. We will have sweet treats and hot coffee awaiting you under the shaded pergola.   

Hear about the garden’s transition from sprawling lawn into 10 themed gardens where the community comes to relax and learn research-based, sustainable gardening practices. 

Garden managers, the steering committee and our educational outreach team will explain how the garden came to be.  They will include an explanation of how we obtained approvals, secured funding, created the mission, and developed the space into a successful educational classroom. Enjoy hearing some of the 'oops moments' and 'ah ha successes' from volunteers. 

With a map of the various gardens, stroll as your interest dictates, or join a guided tour from one of our WSU Master Gardener hosts. 1 CE credit available 

Saddle Rock Shrub-Steppe Ecosystem

Thursday, September 27.  9:30 AM-11:00 AM 

Cost: $15 

Host: Mickey Flemming

Transportation:   Provide your own transportation to the spacious Saddle Rock Natural Area Trailhead (1200 Circle Street, Wenatchee), just 10 minutes from downtown 

Saddle Rock is an iconic geological landmark of the Wenatchee Valley, providing a fabulous combination of shrub-steppe ecology, hiking, and stunning vistas.  Spend an hour and a half with us for a short hike up the popular trail.  Staff and volunteers from the Chelan-Douglas Land Trust will share history, geology, habitat types, fall blooming shrubs, and insects.  Eager hikers can stay longer and ascend to the top of Saddle Rock to take in panoramic views of the North Cascades to the west, Wenatchee and East Wenatchee, the Columbia River directly below, and the Douglas County plateau to the east.  For a preview and map, see     

Wear sturdy shoes and a hat.  There are restrooms at the trailhead.  A snack, water, and a Naturalist Field Guide for the Wenatchee Valley are included. 1.5 CE credits available.

Making Novelty Plant Stakes

Thursday, September 27. 9:30 AM-11:00AM

Cost: $20

Instructor: June McCann

Knick knacks take on a new life as they become part of a useful garden stake.  These whimsical stakes can be used as yard art as well as function as plant supports. 

A selection of fun objects will be provided for this hands-on class, along with stakes, adhesive and everything else needed for this fun and easy class.  All you need to bring is enthusiasm and willingness to create something different for your landscape.  Class size is limited to 15.

Printable Tours/Bonus class schedule

Tours - 2018 (pdf)


Other activities

The Wenatchee Valley has a lot to offer! We hope you take time to enjoy your time here.


HIKING near Wenatchee