There’s no excuse to stay inside this weekend, with three large events taking place on Grays Harbor. Whether you’re interested in tall ships, parades or sand sculpting, there’s an event for you. Celebrate maritime history and pioneering spirit with the Westport Centennial, continuing today and Sunday, or Founders’ Day in Aberdeen, continuing today, or spend some time at the beach during the Five Star Dealerships Sand and Sawdust in Ocean Shores today and Sunday.
Help Westport celebrate its birthday this weekend, with the city’s centennial celebration. Westport was officially incorporated on June 26, 1914 — 56 years after settlers first arrived in the area formerly known as Chehalis Point.
Portland, Ore., resident, Glenn Peterson, was the first white man to bring his family and settle permanently on Chehalis Point in 1858. Others followed him and the community grew.
Homesteaders on Chehalis Point concentrated on subsistence farming. They used horses and oxen to ease the load. They also raised cattle for the table and for sale to earn enough cash to purchase supplies upriver in Aberdeen when needed.
A century later, modern residents will celebrate these events with a pancake breakfast, car show, tours of local tall ships and live entertainment. See the schedule of events for details.
Founders’ Day (Aberdeen)
Aberdeen’s Founders’ Day event also honors local history, celebrating the city’s founder Samuel Benn, who arrived in what would become Aberdeen in 1868. This is Aberdeen’s first such celebration, with the city council officially designating July 2 as Founders’ Day last year.
“We needed something to show community pride, a way to celebrate the accomplishments our city has made and re-energize the people who love our city,” said Jamie Judkins, one of the leaders of the Founders’ Day effort.
Festivities began June 27 and will continue today with a parade on Market Street, vendors in the downtown area and a street dance in the evening. For specific locations and times, see the schedule of events.
Benn’s great-grandsons, brothers James and William Brasfield, are traveling from out-of-state to attend the dinner and be grand marshals of the parade.
Founders’ Day will serve as a lead-in to several events scheduled in Aberdeen this summer. The city will once again host Splash, a Fourth of July celebration at Morrison Park, and a corresponding “Sail-a-bration” at the Seaport Landing. In mid-July, there will be a potlatch on the Chehalis River, and the annual art walk will take place downtown in late-July.
Sand and Sawdust (Ocean Shores)
Ocean Shores will be thick with sand and sawdust from the city’s annual celebration taking place this weekend. Every year, sand sculptors and chainsaw carvers flock to the beach to compete for prizes and showcase their crafts.
This year, amateurs will have a chance to participate with a new featured event: sand sculpting lessons. Linda Miller, of the Ocean Shores Action Committee for Tourism, said the lessons are the result of growing interest in sand sculpting.
“We have been getting requests for more and more and more sand activities,” Miller said of how the upcoming festival keeps evolving. “Events have to grow and change or they dissolve.”
Another change coming up will be Sunday competitions among master-level sand sculpting entrants who will do a quick-carve sand sculpture on request from the audience using one bucket of sand. There also will be a children’s quick-carve competition to build sand castles.
More than 100 food and craft vendors will also be at the Ocean Shores Convention Center throughout the festival. Master chainsaw carvers will be competing at the convention center Friday through Saturday. Eric Bjella will conduct the auctions for the carvings at the end of each competition.
Information from the South Beach Bulletin and the North Coast News was included in this story.
Westport Centennial Highlights:
Saturday, June 28
8 a.m. to noon Pancake breakfast sponsored by the Westport VFW and American Legion Auxiliary at Westport VFW Post 3057. Mayor Michael Bruce, elected officials and special guests will be attending at 9 a.m.
10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Push Rods Car Club Car Show on Carstenson Street, welcome reception and music at the Westport Inn Coho Hall
10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Coast Guard Station Grays Harbor will have an open house
10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Westport Maritime Museum $1.00 admission (Sunday, too)
10 a.m. to 4 p.m. South Beach Buccaneers and the pirate ship will be on hand on the Maritime Museum grounds with their special guest “The Croc” making balloon swords kids and adults alike.
10 a.m. Airlift Northwest will conduct an exercise with the Westport Fire Department at the Westport Airport with a public show-and-tell afterwards. Vintage fire trucks are scheduled to attend.
10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Car Show at the Westport Airport.
Noon Native storyteller and basket weaver Harvest Moon will display her beautiful craft tell stories
Noon to 4 p.m. Old Blue Gravy and All In will be on stage to entertain
Noon to 5 p.m. Westport Marina — Lady Washington will be open for dockside tours
1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Ruth McCausland, author of a recently updated edition of Washington’s Westport, will be on hand for a book signing in McCausland Hall
7 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Westport Centennial Dance at McCausland Hall, sponsored by Washington Crab Producers. Catch of the Day will be performing
Dusk: Westport Centennial fireworks display, sponsored by Ocean Companies and the City of Westport. This event can be viewed from the deck of tall ship Lady Washington on a special Fireworks Cruise from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m. (call 800-200-5239 for more information)
Sunday, June 29
8 a.m. to noon Dockside tours: Lady Washington 25th birthday and Westport Centennial sail, call 800-200-5239 for more information
Noon to 1 p.m. Banded will provide live music on the Westport Maritime Museum grounds
1 p.m. to 3 pm Fireside chat in McCausland Hall at the Westport Maritime Museum. The topic will be the buildings in Westport and a skit presented by Stephen Irving. Both participants will be dressed in centennial period clothing. Refreshments will be served
Founders’ Day Highlights:
11 a.m. Parade on Market Street from M Street to G Street.
12-4 p.m. Vendors on Market and Broadway and Franklin Field
6-10 p.m. Street dance and beer and wine garden on Broadway. Bands include David Anderson &Vaughn Johannes, Humptulips is the headliner.
Sand and Sawdust Highlights:
Sand sculpting lessons: Free sand sculpting lessons will be conducted by Bert Adams Sunday at the Convention Center Sand Pit at noon.
Group sand sculpting competition: The team sand sculpting competition will take place on Saturday, beginning with check-in and plot assignment from 7 to 9:00 a.m. . The contest will run from 9 a.m. until final judging at 3:30 p.m. Contestants must register Saturday before 9 a.m. at the beach.
Individual sand sculpting competition: Individual sand sculpting competitions will take place from 10 a.m. Friday through noon Sunday. Spectators will be able to vote continuously for the winning sculptor.
Children’s quick sand castle competition: The children’s competition will take place Sunday at 1 p.m. at the Convention Center Sand Pit. Registration will take place on site, and prizes will be awarded to the top three contestants.
Chainsaw sculpting: Master chainsaw carvers will demonstrate their skills throughout the festival and compete for prizes and awards from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and from 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on Sunday.
Entertainment: Live entertainment will take place at the Convention Center from 1:30 to 3 p.m. Saturday and from 12:30 to 2 p.m. Sunday.