Save Peshastin Mill Waterfront

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Proposed trail route on Peshastin Mill Site

The Evergreen Mountain Bike Club will begin creating a gravel trail along the waterfront of the Peshastin Mill Site on the 16th of September. The group anticipates 2 weeks until completion.

The trail builders recommend that the trail be between 3 and 4 feet wide and plan to use large rocks to create a natural bridge across the creek. No major movement of soil or plants are anticipated, though they will use motorized wheelbarrows to transport gravel.

The club builds excellent and long-lasting trails, and we are excited to have their expertise. They want to do this project as a gift of thanks to Bob Parlette for his many years of leadership and success for the non-motorized recreational community. Without Bob there would not be the beautiful trail system in the Wenatchee Valley that we all enjoy and will continue to enjoy for decades to come.

The last section available for public access along the Wenatchee River is on the waterfront of the old Peshastin Mill Site, and a deal to keep it that way is officially complete.

Bob Parlette with the Complete The Loop Coalition said deeds were recorded last week transferring the property to Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife.  The public trails group and Trout Unlimited of Leavenworth gifted the 14 acres of waterfront to Fish and Wildlife, so that it would remain open to the public for fishing, hiking, and non motorized use in perpetuity.

The two groups raised over $450 thousand in private donations to purchase the property from the Leavenworth residents, Bill and Jenny Goebel in 2016
The Goebel’s had also purchased the other 50 acres of the 64 acres mill site in 2015 for approximately $1.6 million after the Port Of Chelan County abandoned plans to develop a business park on the property.  The Goebel’s have expressed interest in developing their part of the property into a wine production facility, an incubator for businesses in the arts  and a community recreation element, possibly ball fields.



Community Effort to Preserve the Peshastin Mill Waterfront Succeeds

The community campaign to Save the Peshastin Mill Waterfront has succeeded, thanks to the financial support of over 350 donors, organizations supporting the effort (shown on our web page), and a last-minute major gift from the grandson of Cy Sawyer who built the mill in 1928.

The campaign was about $35,000 short on June 30th, the deadline to fulfill its real estate contract. Sellers Bill and Jenny Goebel of Leavenworth offered a 60 day extension, and less than two weeks later Peter Bevis of Chelan Falls – the grandson of Cy Sawyer – made a major gift to close the gap.

“It’s been an wonderful community effort,” said Bob Parlette of the trail advocacy group Complete the Loop Coalition, who over two years ago put down the earnest money to purchase the 14-acre Peshastin Mill riverfront from the Port of Chelan County. “When I signed that earnest money agreement tying up the property, I had no idea how we would raise the $453,000 purchase price, but I had confidence we could do it. It has been an amazing joining of diverse interest groups. Had we not purchased the waterfront, public access would have been lost forever.” Parlette said.

Major contributions to the campaign came from: retired Drs. Tina & Eliot Scull; the Goebels (who are also purchasing the upland 50 acres), and most recently from Bevis, who wanted to ensure that families could always use the property as he did as a child, floating the waterfront on an inner tube. An anonymous donor also made a significant gift.

“A huge thank you is owed to the ‘fish folks’ that took this project really seriously,” noted Rollie Schmitten of Lake Wenatchee, a leader in the campaign. “The Icicle Valley Chapter of Trout Unlimited, the Plain Fly Tyers, the Wenatchee Valley Fly Fishers, the Upper Columbia Salmon Recovery Board, the Wenatchee Sportsmen’s Association, the Washington Fly Fishing Club Foundation, the Washington State Council of the International Federation of Fly Fishers, the International Federation of Fly Fishers itself, and of course, Trout Unlimited’s local and national teams – the collective support was incredible.”

The volunteer campaign team will now proceed to transfer the property to the Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife for management and maintenance and reserve an easement for a trail.

“As a community we’ve just done something incredible for our children, grandchildren and their children,” said Bob Stroup of Leavenworth, Past President of the Icicle Valley Chapter of Trout Unlimited and also a campaign leader. “I’m so proud to be a part of this community.”

More Information:
Bob Parlette, Complete the Loop Coalition: 509-860-9638
Lisa Pelly, Trout Unlimited: 509-888-0970


This was the last section of Wenatchee River waterfront left for public access. Now, thanks to the success of this regional fund raising effort, 14 acres (more than 3/4 mile) of pristine Wenatchee River shoreline at the former Peshastin Mill site, just west of the town of Peshastin, can be enjoyed by the public.

Once purchased, it will be owned by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, which will manage the acreage as a primitively developed, non-motorized access site for public fishing, hiking, and other low impact recreational use.

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By: Bill and Jenny Goebel, the Complete the Loop Coalition,
and the Icicle Chapter of Trout Unlimited

February 2, 2016

Bill and Jenny Goebel, Leavenworth residents, have announced the acceptance of their offer to purchase the seller's interests in that certain Real Estate contract between the Port of Chelan County and the Complete the Loop Coalition whereby the 14 acres of waterfront on the old peshastin Mill Site was sold to the Coalition for $453,255. The balance of the Contract is due on June 30, 2016. Last year the Goebels entered into a separate earnest money agreement to purchase the upland 50 acres of the Mill site for $1.6 million dollars. That agreement to sell the upland will close in April of 2016.

At the same time, the Goebels have disclosed their plans to develop the upland property in a way that would be compatible with the Coalition's intent to gift the 14 acres of waterfront to the Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife, so that it would remain open to the public for fishing, picnicking, and non motorized use . The Goebel's plans include a section of the property to be dedicated to wine growing and production; a portion dedicated to community interest and history with the intent to enhance tourism opportunities; and a portion devoted to recreation and the environment. The Goebels intend to further amplify and disclose more details of their plans and ask for feedback from the Peshastin Community Council at the regularly scheduled meeting of the council on February 11th.

The Goebels also announced their intent to pass on to the Coalition the discount in the purchase price that they negotiated with the Port. The Goebels stated they are very pleased to support and reinforce the Coalition's goal to have the waterfront remain in public ownership and open to the public in perpetuity. The Complete the Loop Coalition has partnered with the Leavenworth Chapter of Trout Unlimited in an effort to raise the $453,255 purchase price of the Real Estate purchase Agreement. The Coalition and Trout Unlimited still have about $195,000 remaining before they reach their the goal to raise the full purchase price prior to June 30, 2016. Leaders of the fund drive (Bob Parlette, Rollie Schmitten and Bob Stroup) stated when they heard of the Goebel's purchase of the Port's position: "We can't think of a more desirable outcome. To have the Goebels as owners of the upland, with compatible goals of achieving open space that could become a great tourist attraction is a dream come true. Now we just need to wrap up the fund drive and hope that this puts to rest any uncertainty as to the future of the Mill Site."

In the News.  WENATCHEE WORLD, April 2, 2015.

Preserving a Peshastin Treasure
by Robert Parlette, Rollie Schmitten and Robert Stroup

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