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Massive Event for Seaside Prom Birthday on Aug. 7, 100 Years of Oregon Coast History

Published 07/15/21 at 5:55 PM PDT
By Oregon Coast Beach Connection staff

Massive Event for Seaside Prom Birthday on Aug. 7, 100 Years of Oregon Coast History

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(Seaside, Oregon) – The big Seaside Prom celebration will happen after all on the north Oregon coast.

After wavering a bit and waiting on the latest in pandemic developments, Seaside officials have decided to go ahead with the Promenade 100-year anniversary celebration. The centennial parade and ceremony will happen on Saturday, August 7 to commemorate 100 years of the Seaside Promenade's existence. It was on that day in 1921 when hundreds of officials from around Oregon came to the burgeoning tourist mecca, joining then-Governor Olcott in Seaside to watch Martha Hagmeier,age 8, break a bottle of sea water on the concrete.

The Promenade Centennial Parade will begin at 10 a.m. near City Hall (989 Broadway), which was the historic location of Seaside's train station, and then proceed west down Broadway to the Turnaround. The Royal Rosarians, Portland's official ambassadors of goodwill, were present at the 1921 dedication and will return to Seaside to join the parade. Additionally, the group's prime minister will plant a rose at the corner of Broadway and Holladay in the city's Historic Gilbert District to commemorate the day's activities at 11:30 a.m.

Then at 1 p.m., visitors as well as its residents are formally invited to the Turnaround, where ceremonies will begin to look back on the history of this Oregon coast landmark. Past mayors as well as the current mayor will be speaking, along with community representatives and other officials. State Senator Betsy Johnson will give the keynote speech. A time capsule will be buried during the ceremony and another bottle of sea water will be broken to commemorate the milestone.


Above: before 1921, the Prom was a wooden structure

During all this, the public gathers on the beach in front of the Turnaround, which will server as a stage for the historic events. You are advised to bring beach chairs and blankets if you want to sit during the presentations.

“As then-Mayor Hurd made clear in 1921, the Prom is not for Seaside alone but was quite literally built through local cooperation for the enjoyment of everyone,” said Joshua Heineman, director of tourism marketing for the City of Seaside. “Please join us as we celebrate the past and look forward to another hundred years of timeless memories being made on the playground that is the Seaside Prom.”

Now affectionately known as the “Prom,” the 1.5-mile walkway has become an icon not just for the Oregon coast but for the whole of the Pacific Northwest, what Heineman called “an Oregon nod to the great boardwalks and promenades of the world.”

For deeper history see Seaside Promenade History: Beginnings of an Oregon Coast Icon, Part I

The Prom has been quietly whooping it up this year in other ways to celebrate its birthday, with the city providing a 32-page limited-edition Prom Centennial booklet that tells the landmark's story and provides some sweepstakes opportunities for visitors. It contains holographic stickers, a comprehensive history of the Prom, a look at activities and attractions, a walking tour of historic homes, and a seasonal passport program. Find more info at SeasideProm.com.

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