One day before the Super Bowl, rural residents proved to me that the fervor over the Seahawks has boiled over the Cascades.
In case you think Seahawks mania is somehow confined to Puget Megalopolis, it’s not.
Saturday I was in Cle Elum, population 1,890, in upper Kittitas County. Ninety minutes east of Seattle I saw “12” flags, Seahawks jerseys, homemade blue and green signs, and heard shouts of “Go Hawks!” from locals who spied my Russell Wilson jersey.
Several shoppers inside Safeway wore Lynch, Sherman, and 12th Man shirts.
While pumping gas I was greeted by a stranger in a pickup who applauded my jersey.
“I was at the Niners game, man,” he effused. “It was absolutely electric. We’re gonna kick butt tomorrow!”
I wanted to know if these were merely 206ers (an Eastern Washingtonian term for westside residents) stopping to shop and gas up at the local Safeway, so I drove around a bit.
I found Seahawks Fever everywhere.
Someone at the local Eagles club was so excited to promote the Super Bowl that the marquee included extra exclamation points and a wayward apostrophe.
A 12 flag flapped outside the city offices. I saw a home adorned with flags, signs, and a Seahawks snowman. Businesses proclaimed I’m in Seahawks country.
The three-mile drive northwest to Roslyn, population 900, revealed more of the same. It’s no surprise that The Brick, a popular 1889 saloon that draws sports fans on game days, displays a 12 flag. But I didn’t have to go far to find more Hawks revelry.
A local woman parking a pickup festooned with “NFC Champ” flags stepped out, revealing her Steve Largent jersey. She flashed thumbs up and a smile.
A homemade sign hung in the window of make-believe radio station KBHR of the “Northern Exposure” TV show. Soon I even spied a Largent-era Seahawks logo above the entrance to Marko’s Place.
The sleepy burg of Easton showed its Seahawks spirit, too, with a large 12 flag welcoming folks to its local eatery alongside I-90.
If the Seattle Seahawks can literally feed off all of the Northwest fans’ energy, there might be fireworks tomorrow in New Jersey.
Do you have photos depicting Seahawks Fever around the rural Northwest? Please share!