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Erin Romaneschi, 33, fires up the burner and injects a hot air balloon with flame to heat the air inside during Kla Ha Ya Days at Harvey Field in Snohomish, Washington on Friday, July 14, 2023. (Annie Barker / The Herald)

Photos of the Year 2023

From the courtroom to the farthest corners of Snohomish County, here are our favorite images captured by Daily Herald photographers.

Erin Romaneschi, 33, fires up the burner and injects a hot air balloon with flame to heat the air inside during Kla Ha Ya Days at Harvey Field in Snohomish, Washington on Friday, July 14, 2023. (Annie Barker / The Herald)
Evan Reed helps repaint the yellow exterior of the Catalyst Cafe along Hewitt Avenue on Thursday, Dec. 21, 2023 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

Everett man’s mission to beautify city blossoms into team effort

Evan Reed’s newly minted nonprofit has picked up roughly 5,000 pounds of trash from the streets: “Support has been obviously overwhelming.”

Evan Reed helps repaint the yellow exterior of the Catalyst Cafe along Hewitt Avenue on Thursday, Dec. 21, 2023 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Beaches and hiking trails at Deception Pass State Park are a 20-minute walk from the Island Transit bus stop near the park entrance on Highway 20 on Tuesday, Dec. 19, 2023, in Oak Harbor, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

From Mukilteo to Deception Pass on $6, bagel not included

Newsflash: In Island County, bus rides are free. Traveling the length of Whidbey Island can be an ideal winter day-trip.

Beaches and hiking trails at Deception Pass State Park are a 20-minute walk from the Island Transit bus stop near the park entrance on Highway 20 on Tuesday, Dec. 19, 2023, in Oak Harbor, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Lynnwood senior middle blocker Hannah Johnson is The Herald’s Volleyball Player of the Year. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

The Herald’s 2023 Volleyball Player of the Year: Hannah Johnson

The Lynnwood senior’s on-court production and determined leadership help key a historic season for the Royals.

Lynnwood senior middle blocker Hannah Johnson is The Herald’s Volleyball Player of the Year. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Tim Ziesemer poses for a photo at Glad Tidings Church in Darrington, Washington on Tuesday, Dec. 12, 2023.  (Annie Barker / The Herald)

To fill prescriptions, Darrington residents drive 56 miles

The town’s pharmacy closed in July. The customers’ new pharmacist in Arlington called it “another nail in the coffin for health care.”

Tim Ziesemer poses for a photo at Glad Tidings Church in Darrington, Washington on Tuesday, Dec. 12, 2023.  (Annie Barker / The Herald)
Kolton Matson (12) poses for a photo at Lake Stevens High School in Lake Stevens, Washington on Sunday, Dec. 17, 2023. (Annie Barker / The Herald)

The Herald’s 2023 Football Player of the Year: Kolton Matson

The junior quarterback racked up a program-record 49 TD passes while leading Lake Stevens to a second straight state title.

Kolton Matson (12) poses for a photo at Lake Stevens High School in Lake Stevens, Washington on Sunday, Dec. 17, 2023. (Annie Barker / The Herald)
Katherine Hopke poses for a photo in her studio for Golden Light Beeswax Candles at her home in Everett, Washington on Thursday, Nov. 30, 2023.  (Annie Barker / The Herald)

As Christmas nears, Everett candle maker takes cues from nuns

In 2018, Katherine Hopke took over the business from a Stanwood convent. Now she sells the beeswax candles online.

Katherine Hopke poses for a photo in her studio for Golden Light Beeswax Candles at her home in Everett, Washington on Thursday, Nov. 30, 2023.  (Annie Barker / The Herald)
Matt Folmsbee, right, helps a customer at The Kushery on Friday, Dec. 15, 2023 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

Ganja Claus: Gifts for the grandparents from the pot shop?

The use of cannabis by seniors is booming, but the benefits and dangers are not an exact science.

Matt Folmsbee, right, helps a customer at The Kushery on Friday, Dec. 15, 2023 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Senior Hailey Jardine uses the new heat press for DECA to make school apparel at Snohomish High School in Snohomish, Washington on Wednesday, Dec. 13, 2023.  DECA is a national nonprofit for students interested in business. (Annie Barker / The Herald)

Hot off the press! Snohomish High School students create custom swag

New heat presses allow teens to make T-shirts, hoodies and gear at the school’s merch store, Panther Pause — with the copyright.

Senior Hailey Jardine uses the new heat press for DECA to make school apparel at Snohomish High School in Snohomish, Washington on Wednesday, Dec. 13, 2023.  DECA is a national nonprofit for students interested in business. (Annie Barker / The Herald)
Max Redman, his partner and their children in their empty bedroom that was one of the main rooms of their apartment with the maggot infestation on Thursday, Sept. 28, 2023 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

‘Nightmare’ infestation leaves Everett family in debt, battling landlord

One day, Erin Hauge bent to pick up a piece of garbage. It moved. Now, the family is grappling with the stomach-churning fallout.

Max Redman, his partner and their children in their empty bedroom that was one of the main rooms of their apartment with the maggot infestation on Thursday, Sept. 28, 2023 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Dannika Prime talks about how the water came into her home on Tuesday, Dec. 12, 2023 in Silvana, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

After record Stilly flood, Silvana family is ‘stuck in this limbo area’

A storm turned Dannika Prime’s neighborhood into lakefront property. She’s unsure of her next step, except that it’ll be expensive.

Dannika Prime talks about how the water came into her home on Tuesday, Dec. 12, 2023 in Silvana, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Elizabeth Cervantes, right, and her mother Maria Jimenez, left, pose for a photo at their home in Burlington, Washington on Wednesday, Dec. 6, 2023.  (Annie Barker / The Herald)

State lacks Spanish-speaking nurses; for Everett student, it’s personal

Elizabeth Cervantes, an undocumented immigrant, knows firsthand how language is a barrier to care. That’s why she’s in nursing school.

Elizabeth Cervantes, right, and her mother Maria Jimenez, left, pose for a photo at their home in Burlington, Washington on Wednesday, Dec. 6, 2023.  (Annie Barker / The Herald)
Darrington Elementary School fourth grader Brayden Parris, 9, fills up his cup with chocolate milk from one of the schools new milk dispenser during lunch on Monday, Nov. 20, 2023 in Darrington, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

Darrington school reduces lunchroom waste with new milk dispensers

Milk cartons generally aren’t accepted by recycling centers in Snohomish County. Dispensers could be a solution. And they save milk too.

Darrington Elementary School fourth grader Brayden Parris, 9, fills up his cup with chocolate milk from one of the schools new milk dispenser during lunch on Monday, Nov. 20, 2023 in Darrington, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Kaisa Gifford walks slowly with Manny at the Gifford Horses barn in Snohomish, Washington on Thursday, Sept. 7, 2023. Manny is able to walk longer periods of time and is regaining some of his lost body weight. (Annie Barker / The Herald)

Saving racehorses from slaughter, Snohomish rescue offers second chance

Gifford Horses retrains and rehomes thoroughbreds from around the country. Kaisa Gifford “puts her heart and soul into these animals.”

Kaisa Gifford walks slowly with Manny at the Gifford Horses barn in Snohomish, Washington on Thursday, Sept. 7, 2023. Manny is able to walk longer periods of time and is regaining some of his lost body weight. (Annie Barker / The Herald)
Butter Chicken Pizza at Tasty Curry on Wednesday, Dec. 6, 2023, in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

For slice with a twist, try these two Snohomish County pizza spots

Everett’s Tasty Curry and Arlington’s Pedeltweezer’s combine your greatest takeout passions into one perfect pizza pie.

Butter Chicken Pizza at Tasty Curry on Wednesday, Dec. 6, 2023, in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Arlington sophomore wrestler Tre Haines grabs the leg of his teammate during practice on Wednesday, Nov. 29, 2023 in Arlington, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)

Arlington wrestlers aim for more postseason success

The Eagles feature a standout trio of state placers from last season, including a state champion and runner-up.

Arlington sophomore wrestler Tre Haines grabs the leg of his teammate during practice on Wednesday, Nov. 29, 2023 in Arlington, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Lead climbers head up their respective routes at Vertical World North on Monday, Nov. 20, 2023, in Lynnwood, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Beginner’s ascent: A newcomer’s guide to indoor climbing

Indoor climbing gyms in and around Snohomish County offer thrills without winter chills.

Lead climbers head up their respective routes at Vertical World North on Monday, Nov. 20, 2023, in Lynnwood, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
A photo of Cesar Sanchez is overlayed on top of the Riverdale Apartments in Everett, Washington on Tuesday, Nov. 28, 2023. There was a shooting across the street on Sunday. (Annie Barker / The Herald)

Family grieves slain teen; Jackson Park neighbors fear further violence

Cesar Sanchez, 17, went to stay the night at a friend’s house in Everett, his mother said. Early Sunday, he was shot to death.

A photo of Cesar Sanchez is overlayed on top of the Riverdale Apartments in Everett, Washington on Tuesday, Nov. 28, 2023. There was a shooting across the street on Sunday. (Annie Barker / The Herald)
Founder and Executive Director Pa Ousman Joof, alongside Lynnwood Mayor Christine Frizzell, right, prepares to cut the ribbon during the grand opening of the Washington West African Center on Saturday, Dec. 2, 2023, in Lynnwood, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Born out of struggle, West African Center flourishes in Lynnwood

African music filled the room Saturday at 19203 36th Ave. West, for the grand opening of the nonprofit’s new state headquarters.

Founder and Executive Director Pa Ousman Joof, alongside Lynnwood Mayor Christine Frizzell, right, prepares to cut the ribbon during the grand opening of the Washington West African Center on Saturday, Dec. 2, 2023, in Lynnwood, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Keith Stocker poses for a portrait at Stocker Farms in Snohomish, Washington on Tuesday, Oct. 17, 2023. (Annie Barker / The Herald)

Snohomish tree farm brings Christmas spirit, one seedling at a time

At Stocker Farms, it can take a decade to grow the perfect tree. All you have to do is pick the right one.

Keith Stocker poses for a portrait at Stocker Farms in Snohomish, Washington on Tuesday, Oct. 17, 2023. (Annie Barker / The Herald)