Long Beach, Washington Coast  

By Barry Murray

The World’s Longest Banquet Table!

Pull up a map of Long Beach, Washington. That statement is not an exaggeration when you consider America’s longest natural beach —28 miles— is just one side of a long peninsula. The other side is a bay with a well known name in West Coast restaurants.

A smorgasbord table, if you accept that Scandinavians were the first European settlers, who knew what was the best-of-the-best in seafood. One one side of the “spit” is the Pacific Ocean, with razor clams. At the foot on the Columbia River is Ilwaco, with fisherman going after salmon, halibut, tuna, shrimp, scollops, and Dungeness crabs. The top, at the mouth of Willapa Bay are mussels, butter and horse clams, and cockles— all, as the song goes, “a-live, a live-o,” and the famed Willapa Bay Oysters.

At the oyster-beds at Oysterville produce raw “shooters” one doesn't need to chugalug in red, hot, sauce to get past the taste of mud. And they sell various other “steamer” clams.

In between ocean and bay — one place on the peninsula is only one mile wide— a moist fog belt produces a bounty of wild blackberries and strawberries, and commercial cranberries the locals love turning into a chutney. Also, if you believe a feeder steer in a midwest feedlot tastes something like hormones with molasses on sawdust, then a “sea-ranched” Black Angus steak is something you have to taste.

Fast food devotees who go “yuck” at the thought of “chewing” a raw oyster for the taste of the sea, might be more interested in actually driving on the beach sand to attended a, “One Sky One World, International Kite Fly for Peace Festival.” Other such activities not listed by the Washington State Tourism’s monopolistic dispersal of a mandoraty state-wide motel hotel room tax funding of a slow moving, web site, can be found at a locally produced, www.funbeach.com.

However, since I first put this up, with the URL underlined for a reader’s who don’t live in Washington State connivence —”so where is this “fun beach” I can’t find in the search engines?” — I asked the local visitors group Public Relations Officer for a little courtesy in return. So far nothing. Their editorial matter, as with so many chamber of commences, must be controlled by advertisers who don’t want to share the shearing of what the “industry” too often consider to be sheep.

We know about his attitude of exorbitant room taxes charged for simple beach family vacation cottages, only being used to support lodging that is truly only affordable for New York stockbrokers. For all of the Washington State’s 100+ million dollar travel industry promotion budget, don’t bother typing in www.WashingtonStateTourism.com, as it will bring you right back here. Our privately owned E-Travel Magazine company has been in an unfair competition with the state since the director sandbagged us, in 1999, in the development of a small business tourism supported loop project, as shown (what is left) at www.WashingtonTravelMagazine.com.

The idea was to be that www.MtStHelens.com, and www.MtStHelens.net, were supposed to an integral part on an extended vacation. Instead of playing the room tax game these URL’s ended up helping build the page rank of a sister publication, www.AlaskaTravelMagazine.com. Such is the fate of highly paid but unexperienced bureaucrats who never heard that it is the reader (or taxpayers) who really own a magazine. We have returned to WA, and OR, and then CA, etc., to build our own Information Age empire of paper saving www.USAtravelMagazines.com (still in development... and we need private sector help) that so far have been very well received by Germans, Australians, etc., unable to find the Washington State Travel Tips Penny-shopper on their local newsstands.

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