"The Chimpanzee and Human Communication Institute" Ellensburg by JetlagCity

Ellensburg Travel Guide: 10 reviews and 22 photos

in Ellensburg

The reason for this little Ellensburg page is to tell you about a really cool place called the Chimpanzee and Human Communication Institute (CHCI). It’s certainly NOT what Ellensburg is most known for! (That would be the Ellensburg Rodeo.) Ellensburg is a small university town in Central Washington. It's about a 2-hour drive over the Cascade Mountains from Seattle. I've read about some nice walks/hikes around here, which I hope to do in the future. A lot of vineyards in this part of the state, too.

I was very surprised to discover the first chimpanzee ever to learn sign language, a former space program participant, was living right here in this little desert town.

CHCI is a chimpanzee sanctuary, and they offer workshops to the public to learn more about chimpanzees and about communications between our two closely related species.

I’ve always enjoyed learning other languages so I can interact a little with others on my travels. In some ways communicating with chimpanzees seemed more exciting - in other ways, it seemed fascinatingly similar!

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  • In a nutshell:more than just the rodeo
  • Last visit to Ellensburg: Apr 2005
  • Intro Updated Apr 8, 2005
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Reviews (2)

Comments (3)

  • Jonathan_C's Profile Photo
    Jul 14, 2005 at 3:28 AM

    It's great to read about your visit to CHCI. My wife knows all about Washoe but we never thought to stop for a Chimposium on our annual trip to Sun Lakes. Perhaps it's time we did.

  • ATXtraveler's Profile Photo
    May 1, 2005 at 12:44 AM

    This place has me chimping at the bit to get out there! Thanks!

  • Bwana_Brown's Profile Photo
    Apr 17, 2005 at 4:52 PM

    Fascinating stuff, Jane!! So this is where Washoe calls home! I remember seeing a few programs about human/chimp communications on PBS and Washoe was one of the stars! Nice to know that the little chimp is still going strong.

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