Never seen Manito Park, might have to check it out on the way home! I agree wholeheartedly about your take on Eastern WA. West side and east side is really nice but the center area I could do without and today just proved that again for me. Central WA on the other hand is gorgeous where you are and in the Methow.
Strong winds and blowing dust and temps in the 50s is not my paradise. Palm trees on a beach in Kauai is closer.
Or a 78-degree deep blue sky day on the boat on Lake Sammamish with music playing and a cold beer in hand.