LINCOLN CITY — The annual celebration of all things Lincoln City is returning April 19: Lincoln City Community Days.
The nine-day series of events will include new delights for locals to enjoy, as well as long-honored traditions. Though the heart of the event has been kept intact, the structure of it looks quite different from its inception.
As organizer Shirley Hill explained, the community days event has existed in one form or another for 59 years.
“When it started out, it started out really small,” said Hill, who has spearheaded planning for 20 years. “And it started out before Lincoln City was even Lincoln City — Lincoln City was Wecoma, Nelscott, Neotsu, Taft, Cutler City … it was before it incorporated.”
The event also started out as just a day or two, and now stretches across more than a week. The key to its endurance over the decades, Hill explained, is two pronged: perseverance and the firm communal belief in saying ‘thank you.’
That belief is showcased at the Community Days Awards Banquet, where people and businesses in Lincoln City are recognized for the difference they make in the lives of others.
Other longtime events include the Kiwanis pancake breakfast, mudflat golf, radio days and the food drive — which is held on Thursday of Community Days each year. In addition, Miss Oregon will be making her way to various events throughout the celebration, as Community Days has hosted Miss Oregons for many years. Family traditions of attending these events will carry on this year.
But for those looking to experience something new, there are plenty of first-time events planned: like the “egg-speriments” that Driftwood Public Library will be conducting at Black Squid on Easter Sunday and the Celebrity Story Time at Book Warehouse, which will feature this year’s Miss Oregon, among others.
What all these happenings have in common is their goal: to bring people together.
“Everything on (the schedule) is worked as a fundraiser,” said Hill, “and maybe not (raising) funds as much as community involvement; to get people in to take part with the Girl Scouts and part of Oceana Family Literacy.”
The tradition of local supporting local will carry on, and with a lineup of over 30 events, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. However, there is one event that is a part of community days, though it won’t take place within the week of April 19-27.
The SOS Indoor Kite Flying Gala will take place on April 6 and 7 at Taft High School, and serves as a fundraiser for Northwest Coastal Housing — a local non-profit which works to provide affordable housing to those in need. This event needed different timing, but the Community Days committee still promoted the event and included it in their social media coverage. Because the process of the committee is to simply promote and draw together attention for the events that other organizations put on, this worked splendidly. Ultimately, it all pulls back to appreciating the human connections in the town.