Five Places in Aberdeen to Find the Spirit of Kurt Cobain


Five Places in Aberdeen to Find the Spirit of Kurt Cobain

Along the muddy banks of the Wishkah, under the often dreary and gray skies of Grays Harbor, the spirit of Kurt Cobain and Nirvana live on. Not much has changed in Aberdeen and Hoquiam since Kurt roamed the streets as a child and teen, but the places he frequented in his youth are now visited by those hoping to get a taste of the region that defined Kurt, his music and the Pacific Northwest.

Aberdeen was home to grunge and Kurt, whose lyrics portrayed emotional honesty. While Kurt was alive, he and Aberdeen had a tumultuous relationship at best. Today, the relationship has improved as the city and the region recognize his work and celebrate him as the incredible artist and musician he was.

As you enter Aberdeen from the east, the city’s celebration of Nirvana’s front man is obvious thanks to the large “Welcome to Aberdeen” sign including the phrase, “Come as You Are.” Erected in 2005, the sign helps show the changing perception of one of Aberdeen’s most famous residents and is one of the most photographed images in Grays Harbor County. There is a pullout along the highway to snap a quick picture, but the true Kurt Cobain and Nirvana experience is found throughout town, making for a perfect day of exploring and experiencing Kurt’s early years.  Read more here:

Find Fun and Entertainment for the Entire Family at Grays Harbor Raceway

Get ready for flying dirt, the smell of exhaust and all the sounds, sights, smells and excitement that only a dirt racetrack can bring. Racing fans planned to hit the track at Grays Harbor Raceway for opening night on April 29, but our endlessly wet spring forced a delay. Opening night is now May 6 with races planned throughout the season, ending September 30. Gates open at 5:30 p.m. and races start at 7:00 p.m. Races typically end around 9:30 or 10:00 p.m. making for a full night of racing fun. Be sure to bring along jackets or blankets since nights can get chilly at the track.

Grays Harbor Raceway
Midgets are lined up and ready to go! Photo credit: Grays Harbor Raceway

Steve Beitler, the promoter for the Grays Harbor Raceway, notes several highlights for the season giving the community plenty to look forward to. “Races will include sprint cars, modifieds, street stocks and midgets,” he shares.

Fans can expect three big fireworks shows this season. “On Memorial Day we’ll have a big fireworks show and mid-season there will be another fireworks show during the mid-season championship,” Beitler says. “Then, there will be another big fireworks show for the championship race on September 30.”

Fans also have some national races to look forward to. “There will be a classic race on June 30 and July 1, which is a national. And July 29 brings the Modified nationals.”

Beitler shares that the Raceway will also host some new and exciting events this season. “On August 19 we’re going to have a Big Rigs race and on September 4, we’ll have World of Outlaws. We also have Monster Trucks coming to the Raceway on September 16 and 17,” says Beitler.   Read more here:

Busy Grays Harbor Fairgrounds Works Hard to Host Equestrian Events

When you think of the Grays Harbor County Fairgrounds you may simply think of the annual county fair, but the event center is bustling with all kinds of activities from personal to public. There’s always something going on at the fairgrounds, and that means a great boost to the local economy.

grays harbor fairgrounds
Aaron Williamson pauses during practice to pose with one of his trusty steeds. Photo credit: Gregory E. Zschomler

Many family-friendly events crowd the months on either side of the popular August fair. Dog, horse and car shows; antiques, quilts and Christmas crafts; rodeos, swap meets, a home/garden show and tractor pull are just some of the events packing the calendar. And, when events aren’t vying for the weekends, the weekdays are sought after by local horseback riding groups such as the local Twin Valley co-op of the Washington State High School Equestrian Teams, the Grays Harbor Mounted Posse, and the non-profit Hope from Horses—all keeping the arenas and horse barns really busy.  Read more here:

Where to Watch Shorebirds in Grays Harbor

Grays Harbor is known for many things – world class fishing, clam digging, access to the Olympic National Park, whale watching and endless adventures in nature. However, there is one aspect of Grays Harbor that sees visitors flocking to the region every year. Each spring, for just a few weeks, the mudflats and beaches of Grays Harbor transform into rich feeding grounds, rumored to host nearly a million shorebirds.

As the shorebirds fly in huge, synchronized groups darkening large portions of the sky, raptors soar high above, waiting for the moment to swoop down and pick off a smaller bird in the air. Shorebirds are visible around Grays Harbor for most the year, making this an excellent adventure no matter the season.

bird watching
Head to Damon Point and see shorebirds, mountain views and incredible beach combing. Photo credit: Douglas Scott

The shorebird migration in the months of April and May is an event everyone should see, highlighted each year by a huge festival at the Grays Harbor Wildlife Refuge. Known as the Grays Harbor Shorebird and Nature Festival, this event draws birders from around the nation, all enamored with the majestic and beautiful flocks of avian who call our region home for a few weeks each year.  Read more here: