Kurt Lutterman, of Bellevue, figures the timing is appropriate. The last episode of "Northern Exposure," a charming television show, aired...

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Kurt Lutterman, of Bellevue, figures the timing is appropriate.

The last episode of “Northern Exposure,” a charming television show, aired 10 years ago next month. Lutterman said the final Moosefest, an annual reunion of “Northern Exposure” fans, cast and crew, also will be held next month — July 22-24.

“Northern Exposure,” set in Cicely, a fictional Alaska village, charmed fans by depending upon personalities for stories rather than violence and mayhem. In the opening scene, a moose wanders down the town’s main street without running into any humans — hence the name “Moosefest.”

“The show was special,” Lutterman said. “It demonstrated tolerance and a caring community despite the differences in people.”

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The outdoor scenes were shot in Roslyn, Kittitas County, the former coal-mining capital of Central Washington. Roslyn stores still carry “Northern Exposure” magnets and memorabilia.

The first reunions in 1997-1998 were commercially organized. (There have been other gatherings, too, also called Moose Days, Cicely Fest and Moosefests.)

But Lutterman said the fans he knows enjoyed getting together so much that they picked up the antlers — so to speak — in 1999, turning Moosefest into a nonprofit event. Profits, $15,000 in all so far, made by the Moosefest organization are donated to Roslyn.

This year, a guided walking and bus tour of filming sites, a trivia contest and a catered dinner and auction are included in the $125 ticket.

The event attracts fans from all over the world, Lutterman said. Just not enough of them. Attendance at Moosefest has been declining steadily.

“It has been an awful lot of fun, but with the dwindling turnout it doesn’t make sense to continue the catered dinners and bus tours,” Lutterman said.

“I treasure the friendships and kinships with the other fans,” Lutterman said. “We’re still going to be getting together in Roslyn each July. It just won’t be the Moosefest organization.”

For further information, go to www.moosefest.org.

Party plan

There was nothing retiring about the recent graduation party at Emerald Heights Retirement Center in Redmond. Usually, these folks work behind the scenes to keep Emerald Heights running.

This time, they stood in front so residents could applaud their achievements.

Honored were Redmond High School grads Rachael Anderson, Aislinn Ball, Jenny Brown, Tim Brunner, Danielle Egge, Melanie Estes, Janet Hilton, Heather Lutz, Julia Marino, Erik Monsen, Kathleen Morris, Lucy Potyomkin, Stephanie Tuttle and Allison Young; Kierra Coover from the Family Learning Center and Natassja Vargas-Johnson from Inglemoor High School.

The graduation celebration also honored employees who recently became U.S. citizens, said Kay Wallin, spokesewoman for Emerald Heights.

Those included Selina Byrne from Ireland and Phuoc Le, Chou Pham and Ngoc (Dung) Pham from Vietnam.

Nikole Jay, director of resident services, graduated from the University of Phoenix. Jonabeth Tubbs earned her degree in licensed practical nursing from Lake Washington Technical College. (She has won two employee scholarships from Emerald Heights and plans to become a registered nurse.)

Tatyana Potyomkin earned a nursing degree from Bellevue Community College. She is the mother of Lucy Potyomkin, one of the high-school grads.

“Most of the audience thought they were sisters,” said Wallin.

Sherry Grindeland: 206-515-5633 or sgrindeland@seattletimes.com