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On your mark, get set, crawl! For yarn, that is

Hundreds of people spend weekends on yarn crawls, seeking treasure, fun and fellowship. #k5evening

THURSTON COUNTY, Wash. — Every so often hundreds of people spend their weekends driving hundred of miles in search of treasure, fun and fellowship. It's for events called yarn crawls, which bring together knitting and crocheting enthusiasts. 

During the crawls, participants visit multiple stores looking for special discounts and exclusive patterns, and to collect stamps on passports that they can use to enter raffles or win prizes.

"It brings out all the yarn lovers, fiber lovers, knitters, and crocheters," said Michelle Cohen of Black Sheep Yarn Boutique.

Her shop is one of ten from Chehalis to Poulsbo involved in the Pacific Northwest Yarn Crawl.

"All the shops are connected," she said. "It's like a party. It really is like a party. We get between 200 to 300 people coming through on a weekend." 

"Last year we did the whole thing which was an adventure in and of itself," said Kate Tanner. "This year we're focusing on our favorites, starting down in Chehalis and of course we have got to go visit the alpacas."

It's a 40-mile drive from Olympia to Fife, where Firwood Farm's gift shop specializes in alpaca yarn.

Credit: KING TV
Leanna Stidham, of Firwood Farm, sells fibers made from alpaca fleece

"Right now in the shop, we have we have yarn from Tina who is the dark black one here with a white face," said Leanna Stidham who raises rescue alpacas and says the pandemic made knitting and crocheting popular again.

"It's a very relaxing thing," she said. "It's something you can do while you're watching TV in the evenings."

Let's make one more stop in Gig Harbor, where some yarn crawlers are having a celebration. 

"I need some applause here. We did it!" said Aleen Yamasaki, as her passport gets its tenth and final stamp at Rainy Days Yarn & Mercantile. "I'm so excited we did it all. I live in Edmonds so I did a lot of driving the past two days and now I feel great!"

Credit: KING TV
A customer shows off a fully stamped passport book which enables her to qualify for more prizes.

This is 9-year-old Penelope McNeal's first yarn crawl. She's just three stamps short of filling out a passport.

"I really like that I can go to different places and explore the things around them," McNeal said. She seems to have the shopping down. The knitting? Still a work in progress.  

"I want to learn but my mom, she says I have to work on patience," she said.

Credit: KING TV
Penelope McNeal considers purchasing a blue hat during a recent yarn crawl

"Well you've knit one row and now you've got to work on knitting the next row," her mom said.

As everyone here knows, before you knit, you've got to learn how to crawl.

The 17th annual Puget Sound LYS ("Local Yarn Store") Tour is a crawl happening this weekend. Twenty shops from Seattle to Bellingham are featured. 


KING 5's Evening celebrates the Northwest. Contact us: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Email.

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