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Lincoln City's Antique Week Uncovers Oregon Coast's Past

Published 02/03/2020 at 3:50 AM PDT
By Oregon Coast Beach Connection staff

Lincoln City's Antique Week Uncovers Oregon Coast's Past

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(Lincoln City, Oregon) – Antique & Collectibles Week again descends upon the central Oregon coast town of Lincoln City next week, running February 8 through 17 and including not just collectibles and funky treasures but several trips into the region’s past. With bundles of antique stores and some used book purveyors, the town has long been a recognized destination for history hounds and lovers of older finery – a tradition going well back into the ‘90s. For the last decade (plus a few years), Lincoln City Antique & Collectibles Week has been a pinnacle of such fun that grew quickly into an enormous celebration.

(BREAKING NEWS: Lincoln City has canceled its special glass float drop for the weekend, resuming on Tuesday)

Especially curious is the fact the town is one of the youngest on the Oregon coast (officially forming in the early ‘60s), but it has a unique way of keeping the past alive. This year, the little beach burgh particularly shines with a host of events centered around history and antiquing, but also a very special glass float drop that involves the real thing: actual Japanese glass floats.

This ten-day festival of old stuff takes place all over town, involving numerous businesses already in that industry - and a few that aren’t - hosting happenings of their own.

One of the most engaging events of the entire festival is the dropping of actual antique Japanese glass floats. These curious treasures are now quite coveted and extremely rare to find, but once they commonly hit Oregon’s beaches. From the ‘50s through the ‘80s they were a regular sight: green, thick glass, used by Japanese fishermen back in the east, and lost in great numbers at sea for decades where they landed on the U.S. west coast. They often showed up still entangled in their original nets, making for even more coveted catches. You still occasionally see them as exterior decorations on the Oregon coast, especially on older beach homes.

By the ‘90s the inundation had all but stopped as Japanese fishing fleets went to using other materials. Now, the Lincoln City Visitors Bureau reignites that flame with turning their usual glass float drops promotion towards the very thing that initially inspired it: actual glass floats from Japan from at least 40 years ago. They drop 300 of these on the beach throughout Antique Week.

The largest antique mall on the entire Oregon coast will be participating, of course. Little Antique Mall – located near midtown – features over 80 dealers in one building. The Oceanlake District is its own neighborhood hotspot of antique shops, with a handful of malls hosting more dealers. In the truly old Nelscott area, Nelscott House Antiques & Collectibles shows off its wares. At the southern end at Taft, you’ll find Beach Bum Vintage and Streetcar Village with their own variety of elder goodies.

The scavenger hunt happens all ten days, where you pick up a map at participating stores and collect stamps at various locations (see the visitor center site). Then, turn it in and you may win a drawing for a two-night stay at Chinook Winds Resort Hotel.

At the North Lincoln County History Museum, the newest exhibit delves into the “Devils of North Lincoln County,” a rather goofy but intrepid group of locals who came together in the ‘30s to promote events like “The Redhead Roundup” and the “Devils Lake Regatta.” They were key in central Oregon coast tourism for a good couple of decades. The exhibit features artifacts and documentation of what they did for the area, including some wacky finds such as a giant devil head for a parade float, their costumes and more.

On February 8, the museum hosts a presentation on Oregon coast’s famed McCullough bridges. Given by Joyce Sherman it starts at 2 p.m. You’ll learn how the Oregon Coast Highway was built and how integral the work of architect Conde McCullough was to the scenic beauty we now see on the coastline.

The Super Auction takes place February 8 at 5 p.m. at Chinook’s Seafood Grill (1501 NW 40th Pl.) Here you get to enjoy food and drink while bidding on outstanding antique finds.

On February 11, make your very own Vintage Valentine at the Lincoln City Cultural Center.

See more at Lincoln City's website. 541.996.1274.

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