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Oregon Coast's 2024 Festival Preview: Food, Fun and Sandcastles to Tunes, Floats

Published 1/19/24 at 3:45 p.m.
B
y Oregon Coast Beach Connection staff

Oregon Coast's 2024 Festival Preview: Food, Fun and Sandcastles to Tunes, Floats

(Oregon Coast) – There is much going on in 2024 along the Oregon coast, especially now as it's slowly getting back in full gear after the pandemic years caused so many cancellations. Big changes are taking place for handicap accessibility along the region, and the personnel needed to pull of the larger festivals or celebrations are beginning to return to full force, which means you should soon start to see more major events return. (Photo courtesy Circles in the Sand)

Latest Coastal Lodging News Alerts
In Seaside:
Includes exclusive listings; some specials in winter
In Cannon Beach:
Includes rentals not listed anywhere else
In Manzanita, Wheeler, Rockaway Beach:
Some specials for winter
In Pacific City, Oceanside:
Some specials for winter
In Lincoln City:
Some specials for winter
In Depoe Bay, Gleneden Beach:
Some specials for winter
In Newport:
Look for some specials
In Waldport
Some specials for winter
In Yachats, Florence
Some specials for winter
Southern Oregon Coast Hotels / Lodgings
Reedsport to Brookings, places to stay; winter deals

This list isn't meant as a comprehensive one: it's just a sampling of what takes place on the Oregon coast that is worth saving the date for. It doesn't mean this is a best of list, either.

Instead, here you'll find sandcastles, food, a boatload of live music, crab, some hauntings, wine, antiques, and gobs more. From Brookings to the top of the Oregon coast at Astoria, the region is jam-packed with sights, sounds and flavors to indulge in.

You may now begin you beach vacation planning for the year.

2024 Florence Rhododendron Festival, May 16 to 19. Its carnival, Rhododendron Court, parades, classic car cruise, vendor fair, and flower show all serve as the unofficial kickoff to the summer tourist season. There's the Davis Shows Carnival at the Port of Siuslaw property in Old Town. Saturdays traditionally feature the annual 5K Rhody Run and Walk, the junior parade and kids’ activities, the annual Rhody Classic Car Show ‘n’ Shine, and the Coast Radio Classic Car Cruise through Old Town. Sunday brings the grand floral parade down Highway 101 and into Historic Old Town at noon. See the Florence website.


Cannon Beach Sandcastle Contest, June 15, 2024. At the top of many people's list for the Oregon coast is the Cannon Beach Sandcastle Contest, held every June. Every year, it's a new session of intense and intricate constructs, whimsical to divine inspirations, wonders carved from grains and delightful surprises from creative brains around the country. There's always more involved than just that one day now, as the fest has expanded beyond the contest itself, which includes the Singing Sands 5K Fun Run/Walk.

See cannonbeach.org for updates.

South Coast Clambake Festival, March 7 – 12. North Bend's rather distinct jazz fest has nothing to do with actual clams or food of any kind. It's a week worth of jazz, blues and 50s tunes all crammed into the Mill Casino, a tradition that goes back to 1988. Originally it was a Dixieland thing, but managed to spread out into other genres over the decades.

This year is looking at The Alpha Rhythm Kings as the headliner. See the Coos Bay / Oregon's Adventure Coast site for more.

Lincoln City's Antique & Collectibles Week, February 17 - 24, 2024. Ten days of significantly fun digging into the central Oregon coast's antique scene, with a variety of events and appraisals. Be-bop all over town looking for the sweetest deals, or go search for one of the 100 special glass floats left on the beaches – actual, old-school Japanese glass balls. It's like a citywide sale – but a lot more intense. See the Explore Lincoln City website.

Did you know other towns do glass floats as well? 2024 Oregon Coast Glass Bottle, Glass Float Drops for Lincoln City, Bandon, Gold Beach

Haunted Taft Tours, summer into October. Lincoln City's little Taft district (where the Siletz Bay is) has a lot more than meets the eye. And now you hear about and see bits of that. The Haunted Taft Tours take you through various landmarks in that section of town, and you get treated to chilling fireside tales - but in person. Pirates, pioneers, the ghost of a logger haunting an old wateringhole or the mysterious, ethereal schooner of Siletz Bay, it's an eerie but amusing sojourn through this district that's full of legends and stories. For more information and tickets, visit HauntedTaft.com.

Azalea Festival in Brookings, May 24 – 27. It's part song, part food celebration, part outdoor market and a whole bunch of other things. Brookings' Azalea Park plays host to this mega fest every year, which includes a varied roster like street fairs, a major car show, a street dance, rides on helicopters and airplanes, a massive barbecue and then days of live music. The bulk of it happens at the park, but some chunks take place elsewhere in town. Every year is a bit different.

Keep apprised of details via their website.

Bandon Circles in the Sand, April 26 – August 23. For a little over a decade now, these artisan-created sand circles have graced the southern Oregon coast during the spring / summer seasons. From meager, introverted beginnings as a kind of meditation for local artist Denny Dyke, Bandon's Circles In The Sand is now a major tourism draw to the wee fishing village. The peace-inducing phenomenon has grown to epic proportions. It's advised you take the shuttles to and from the site, as parking is out of control. See the official site

Oregon Ghost Conference. March 22 - March 24. Seaside has always had a way of coming alive after dark, but here that's especially true. This pinnacle of the paranormal for the Northwest now attracts folks from beyond just the West Coast. You get haunted tours of the already-atmospheric town, speakers, classes, and even investigations, along with a lot of other aspects. Seaside Civic and Convention Center, 415 1st Ave. See Seaside's website.

Astoria Warrenton Crab, Seafood & Wine Festival.
April 26 - 28, 2024. Bundles of foodie fun near the seaside comprise one of the north coast's more stalwart and yummy traditions. It's a tour of coastal flavors, trend-setting vintners from the Northwest and gobs of live music. There's probably about 175 vendors each year and some 16,000 people hit town for the fest. Visit AstoriaCrabFest.com for more information.


Astoria's Great Columbia River Crossing. Sunday, October 13, 2024. There's still much to be announced, but the race always has a cap in participants, which is often around 3,500 runners. The whole bridge gets shut down to traffic in a spectacular flood of human endurance, and hordes zip their way over the 4.3 miles of the scenic icon. Registration will open in early summer. See the Astoria website.

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Andre' GW Hagestedt is editor, owner and primary photographer / videographer of Oregon Coast Beach Connection, an online publication that sees over 1 million pageviews per month. He is also author of several books about the coast.

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