PORT TOWNSEND: Business picks up with Rhody kickoff

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PORT TOWNSEND — Although most major Rhododendron Festival activities don't begin until later this week, local restaurants and hotels are already noticing a boost in business.

An arts and crafts fair, a senior citizen's dance, and a bicycle tour officially kicked off the Rhododendron Festival on Saturday.

“This is one of the busiest times of the year,” said Mauricio Cisneros, an owner of the El Sarape Mexican restaurant at 628 Water St.

El Sarape is located adjacent to the arts and crafts festival.

Hoteliers throughout the city said they were crowded this weekend, and The Bishop, Manresa Castle, The Tides Inn, the Port Townsend Inn officials all said they are nearly booked full for next weekend as well.

“Accommodations will be pretty much filled up,” said Steve Levin, who works at the Port Townsend Visitor's Center. “There's a lot of people coming back to see old friends”

This report appears in full in today's Jefferson County edition of the Peninsula News, on sale throughout the county. Or click onto “Subscribe” at left to order your copy via U.S. mail.

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