Thanks to the tireless efforts of countless ecological stewards, Washington’s salmon population is slooooowly rebounding, and you can learn all about how these humble fish support our entire ecosystem at a family-friendly gathering by the Ballard Locks. Salmon may look like slippery little weirdos, but their whole lives are fascinating quests rivaling those of the most intrepid adventurers. And here in Seattle we’re fortunate to be able to cheer them along on their journey—one that helps keep countless other species from dropping off the face of the Earth. The Salmon Journey gatherings are hosted by trained naturalists most Saturdays from July to September; you’ll learn how to spot a spawning salmon, about their surprisingly epic exploits, and the cruel enemy threatening to wipe them out. (Shocking twist: It’s people!)

Cedar River Salmon Journey happens most Saturdays from 10:30 am to 3:30 pm at the Hiram M. Chittenden Locks in Ballard. It’s free!