City of Redmond turns 100 today

People gather around for a community bonfire Sunday evening at Redmond City Hall. This was the final centennial event to celebrate Redmond
People gather around for a community bonfire Sunday evening at Redmond City Hall. This was the final centennial event to celebrate Redmond's 100th birthday.
— image credit: Courtesy of City of Redmond

On Sunday evening, about 2,000 people gathered at Redmond City Hall for a community bonfire to celebrate Redmond's centennial one last time before the end of the year.

The bonfire was lit at 4:30 p.m., about half an hour before the event started and continued to burn well into the night.

"The fire burned pretty steady till about nine," said City of Redmond community events manager Lisa Rhodes.

Throughout the night, attendees enjoyed the music of the Keith Highlanders Pipe Band, Redmond's own Celtic Fire and Greg Paul. Peet's Coffee & Tea also offered samples and s'mores kits were provided by the Redmond Kiwanis Club, who sold out of their 500-plus kits.

Burn barrels were placed throughout City Hall campus for people to roast their marshmallows and while the bonfire will probably be a "once-every-hundred years" event, Rhodes said they have used the burn barrels during Redmond Lights before and may do so again and have s'mores again since so many people enjoyed them.

She added that the bonfire was also a way for people to come together and relax.

"It was definitely casual," she said about the event.

Rhodes' favorite part about the night was just seeing the circle of people around the bonfire, five or six people deep, mesmerized by the fire.

"It was just peaceful, beautiful and calm," she said. "It felt like a big campfire you would have with your family."

Rhodes said a number of people also approached her, telling her how much they enjoyed the community events the city holds.

It took four of the City of Redmond's parks operations crew to build the bonfire, which consisted of locally sourced logs and cordwood on a sand base.

The City of Redmond turned 100 on Monday. Redmond was incorporated as a city on Dec. 31, 1912, following a community vote and the birth of Ernest Alexander Adams (born Nov. 24, 1912), who brought the population of Redmond to 300, the number needed to incorporate as a city.

In honor of Redmond's birthday, Congressional Reps. Dave Reichert and Suzan DelBene — who both represent Redmond — issued a joint statement congratulating the city.

"Redmond began as a small logging community," the statement reads. "A century later, it has turned into a vibrant urban center of 55,000 that still maintains its strong sense of community and is proud of its small-town feel."

In the statement, Reichert and DelBene highlighted Redmond's "pioneering, entrepreneurial spirit," the city's annual Derby Days festival, it's being home to "some of the most prominent high tech companies in the world" and more.

"Together with Seattle and environs, (Redmond's) influence contributes to form a region that is vibrant, attractive for business and a great place to live, work and raise a family," the statement reads. "As (Redmond Mayor John Marchione), along with all of Redmond's dedicated City Council members, continue to build on Redmond's rich history, we look forward to watching and aiding with the city’s success in years to come."


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