Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Day 22: Out of the ashes and into Phoenix

Its a good thing we fed Fin before arriving at the Arizona Science Center!

Today the road show braved the 115 degree heat (don’t worry, it felt like 112) of Phoenix to bring our campaign to the people of this molten area.

We started off our day at the Arizona Science Center, where we were met by nearly 100 kids as soon as we pulled up. Fin was a little nervous when she saw the excited gaggle of campers, but she put her all into it, and I would like to report that the roadshow set a world record by stuffing 23 kids into Fin at the same time. Don't believe me? Watch this dramatic newscast of the event, which played all across the state:

The kids had spent the past week learning about sea animals, and were particularly interested in salmon because they are anadromous fish, which are those that spend the majority of their life at sea and return to the exact freshwater streams and rivers where they were born in order to spawn.

A good time was had by all, and Fin needed the biggest glass of water you have ever seen by the time they left us.

Next the roadshow team (currently Bobby Hayden, Jeremy Nickel and Buddy) dropped in on Senator John McCain’s office. We were very well received by staff assistant Carlos Sierra, who came out to meet Fin and had a long and detailed conversation with us about the campaign, its goals, and what we were asking McCain to do. He was very interested to hear about the Snake River dams and the plight of the salmon.

The roadshow crew from L-R: Bobby Hayden, Fin, Jeremy Nickel and Buddy

We then headed to Bass Pro Shops, a gigantic fishing megastore just outside of Phoenix, in Mesa, AZ. I have seen some crazy things before, but two floors that stretched over half a city block dedicated to fishing and hunting was certainly something neither Fin or I will ever forget. The store has its own waterfall, several aquarium-sized fish tanks, and a stocked river that ran through it. Not to mention a shooting range, video arcade and restaurant all on premises.

We spent the next five hours talking to hunters and fishers about wild salmon, the Snake River, dams, fishing, and anything else that came up, and most of it did. And did I mention that it was hot? Because as we pulled out at 9pm it was still 109 degrees, but of course it only felt like 106.

Stay cool and check in tomorrow. Where are we going next you ask? Vegas baby.

- Jeremy, Bobby, and Buddy

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