Washington is such an outstanding state, it is easy to overlook the fact that we live in paradise ourselves. These are a few of my favorite places:
Terra Blanca Winery in Benton City on a Friday evening with live music, good food and a spectacular view of wine country.
Fishhook Park on the Snake River for a day trip or campout. It has beautiful beaches, great boating and camping and beautiful views of the Snake River canyon.
Anywhere the Kira Palm Trio is playing. We are blessed to have such a great local talent as Kira join Steve Haberman and Gary Berstrom. Enjoy the wine and food at places such as Two-Eyed Fish Bar and Bookwalter's Winery.
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Of course, don't overlook the great hike up Badger Mountain. I did not do this for years. I think the word "mountain" intimidated me. All ages enjoy this hike with its marvelous views of the Columbia Basin: mothers with infants, 2-year-olds (bribe with gummy worms!), elderly with canes, fit and unfit -- just try it. There are three ways up with varying difficulty.
Great burger or pizza and beer? Atomic Brew and Ale. It is not only recommended on Yelp, as my visitors found out, but where else can you go and enjoy "caution: radioactivity" signs and plutonium beer?
Yes, I love the Tri-Cities!
-- PATRICIA HOLTEN, Richland