Thursday, Aug. 10, 2017, is Alaska Wild Salmon Day, an annual recognition of the state’s five wild species, which make up more than 90 percent of the U.S. salmon harvest. This year marks its second year on the calendar since Alaska Gov. Scott Walker made it official in May 2016 at the Juneau Maritime Festival.

Events around the state will celebrate the many ways that wild salmon influences life in Alaska, including a free salmon barbecue at the Alaska Center in Anchorage.

Post your salmon pics with the hashtag #AskForAlaska and #WorthIt. If you’re feeling ambitious, you can enter the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute’s commercial fishing video contest, which ends Sept. 30. 

"We honor our seafood and fishermen every day in Alaska. Alaska Wild Salmon Day is another reminder of how important salmon is to Alaska's communities, history and heritage," said Jeremy Woodrow, Communications Director for the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute. "When you choose wild Alaska seafood, you are honoring the generations of fishermen who have spent countless days and nights on the water to provide the world with the best sustainable seafood that can only come from a place as wild and natural as Alaska."

Looking for recipes? Try one of these:

Alaska Salmon Poké
BBQ Wild Alaska Salmon Flatbread 
Cedar Plank Grilled Alaska Salmon with Sweet Potatoes 
Mustard Maple Salmon with Roasted Vegetables 
North African-Style Alaska Salmon 

The celebration also kicks off a nine-day Sitka Seafood Festival hosted by the Alaska Sustainable Trust and the Alaska Longline Fishermen’s Association. All proceeds go to the Young Fishermen's Initiative.

Jessica Hathaway is the former editor in chief of National Fisherman.

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