12 Things Syrian Refugees Should Know About Tri-Cities
Kennewick, Pasco and Richland will receive a handful of Syrian refugees this fall with a few more coming later. Tri-Cities is a unique community so here is what I want them to know about our community:
The Islamic Center of Tri-Cities in West Richland is full of nice people from all over the world. Some are refugees like yourself, some are PhD researchers at PNNL. There is great diversity in the local Muslim community.
We're an open and accepting community. Over the past 20 years we've welcomed refugees from Burma, Somalia, Iraq, Cuba, Russia, Sudan, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Vietnam, Afghanistan, Colombia, Former Yugoslavia, and additional countries.
People outside of Tri-Cities are confused by the Richland High School logo of a nuclear mushroom cloud. To understand this area's proud history in developing nuclear security and technology visit The REACH Museum.
The Mid Columbia has the best parks in the world. Well, at least in the several countries I've visited I've found none better than Columbia Park's Playground of Dreams, Howard Amon Park, Leslie Groves, Chiawana, Southridge Sports & Events Complex (that now boasts a carousel), Pioneer Park in Walla Walla, Jefferson Park in Walla Walla, City Park in Prosser, Butte Park in Hermiston and Lions Park in Othello.
The river trails in Tri-Cities are second to none. Walk, bike, skate, or skateboard.
You'll need ear plugs for when they blow the train horn after every goal, but then it's your turn to ring a cowbell! We'll be doing that A LOT this season -- GO AMS!
Don't make someone tailgate you or flash their lights before you obey simple traffic laws and common courtesy.
If you get into a wreck on the Blue Bridge we may exile you to Western Washington and trust me, you don't want that. Be cautious on the Blue Bridge and don't ruin everyone's commute by getting into a wreck.
Just accept some things... don't try to figure everything out. There's nowhere to "jump off" Jump Off Joe, but it is a great place for a picnic or to watch a sunset.
I don't know if they have food trucks in Syria but you're going to want to try ALL OF THEM here.
If you see someone's dog poop on Badger Mountain Trail and the owner walks away, it's OK to push them off a ledge (JUST KIDDING! Sort of)
If you have a favorite team other than the Seattle Seahawks and the Washington State University Cougars THAT'S OK! We accept you, we love you, we embrace your diversity. Just keep your mouth shut, OK?