The Most Changed West view contest page »
The New Forks, Washington
Forks, once a tiny logging town relegated to a bygone era, has erupted in 'Twilight-Mania', thanks to the author Stephanie Meyer's choice of settings. To many of us native Pacific Northwesterners, driving through a newly Twilight-ified Forks is a very strange experience. For the busloads of teenage girls and Japanese tourists, however, it is an opportunity to grasp a sliver of Bella and Edward's world, and to buy mass-produced vampire knick-knacks in one of a dozen tiny downtown shops. The Quileute people of Forks' lineage stretches back thousands of years to the Ice Age, making them possibly the oldest inhabitants of the Pacific Northwest. Twilight tourism now brings much needed revenue, however strange, to a tiny area tucked into the forests of the Olympic Peninsula.