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Leavenworth and Icicle Creek

Posted by Geordie Romer on December 21, 2021

Leavenworth Washington is located in Chelan County between Stevens Pass and Cashmere at an elevation of 1171 feet where Icicle Creek enters the Wenatchee River. According to the U.S. Census in 2000, Leavenworth had a population of 2074 people. The greater Leavenworth area, encompassed by the 98826 zip code, includes Lake Wenatchee and the Chumstick Valley and the communities of Plain, Merritt, and Coles Corner.

The town was built alongside the Great Northern Railway that ran across Stevens Pass. The railroad was completed in 1893 and streets were laid out next to the tracks by landowner Charles Leavenworth. By 1903, Leavenworth Washington was home to the second biggest sawmill in the state of Washington. In 1906, Leavenworth officially incorporated.

Eventually the railroad moved from Tumwater Canyon to the Chumstick Canyon to avoid the avalanches common in the area and the railroad left downtown Leavenworth too. Both mining and logging industries were in decline and Leavenworth began to lose its luster. Project LIFE (Leavenworth Improvement For Everyone) decided that the future of Leavenworth was tourism. Since Leavenworth’s mountain scenery was so reminiscent of the Alps, a Bavarian theme was adopted by the community in the early 1960s.

Leavenworth now attracts over 1 million visitors from all over the world. It hosts one of the biggest Oktoberfest celebrations outside of Munich each year. The Christmas Lighting festival brings national attention with A+E naming Leavenworth Washington “Holiday Town USA” and Good Morning America making regular appearances.


Cascade School District: The schools in the Leavenworth/Lake Wenatchee area belong to the Cascade School District. There are three elementary schools, one middle and one high school.

Elementary Schools:

  • Peshastin/Dryden Elementary (PK-1)-Located on School Rd. in Peshastin, WA. This school has started an exciting new program called FLEX-Foreign Language Exposure Program where children are exposed to Spanish at an early age.
  • Osborn Elementary (2-5)-Located in Leavenworth, WA.
  • Beaver Valley Elementary (K-5)-Located in Plain, WA. This school covers the surrounding areas of Plain and Lake Wenatchee.

Middle School: Icicle River Middle School-Located in Leavenworth, WA. Osborn and Beaver Valley Elementary feed into this middle school.

High School: Cascade High School-Located in Leavenworth, WA.


As you walk through Leavenworth homes for sale, you may notice that most people have baseboard electric heat, electric furnaces or heat pumps, and electric stoves. In fact the only gas you may see is a gas fireplace.

Why do most Leavenworth residents have electric heat and appliances?

The answer: Chelan County has one of the lowest electric rates in the state. The Chelan County Public Utilities District (PUD) operates three hydroelectric dams on the Columbia River generating enough power to run a city of 900,000 people for a year. As the name implies, the PUD is owned by the residents of Chelan County.  All this translates to an average price of 2.9 cents/Kilowatt hour.

Listed below are the residential rates for electricity for Chelan County and the City of Seattle. Chelan County is by month and Seattle is by day.

Chelan County – Monthly Charges per kWh

  • First 1,000 kWh @ 2.18 cents
  • 1001 to 2000 kWh @ 2.70 cents
  • > 2000 kWh @ 2.85 cents

Basic Charge: $6.85

Seattle, Residential: City – Daily Charges per kWh-April thru September

  • First 10 kWh @ 4.06 cents
  • 11 kWh to 100 kWh @ 8.39 cents
  • >100 kWh @ 9.81 cents

Basic Service Charge: 9.73 cents/meter/day


  • Leavenworth, WA: Located at the intersection of Chumstick Highway and North Road near the County gravel pit. This site currently collects clean/rinsed aluminum cans, clear #1 PETE plastic bottles, mixed paper, and corrugated cardboard.
  • Dryden, WA: The Dryden Transfer Station is a larger recycling drop-off location and dump, located one mile east of the Hwy 2 and Hwy 97 Blewett Pass road junction. (Entry is only possible from the eastbound lanes of Hwy. 2.). Recycling items accepted there are clean/rinsed aluminum cans, mixed paper, office paper, newspaper, magazines/glossy paper, clear glass, clear #1 PETE plastic bottles, tin cans, #2 HDPE plastic milk jugs, corrugated cardboard, and chipboard food boxes.
  • Cashmere, WA: There is one recycling drop-off location in Cashmere on River Street. Recycling items accepted are clean/rinsed aluminum cans, clean/flattened corrugated cardboard, clean magazines/glossy paper, newspaper, any color glass, tin cans, chipboard food boxes, mixed paper, office paper, clear #1 PETE plastic bottles, and #2 HDPE plastic milk jugs.

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