Air show, powwow, fair events canceled
Summer officially starts Saturday, but three events that define the season in Jefferson County have been canceled due to restrictions on gathering.
Pi-Ume-Sha Treaty Days Powwow and the Airshow of the Cascades have been canceled, and the Jefferson County Fair is making significant changes.
The Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs hold their annual powwow in June to celebrate the Middle Oregon Treaty of 1855. The tribes decided to cancel the event in order to curb the spread of COVID-19, though they are not bound by Gov. Kate Brown's stay-home orders. They will be working on other ways to tell the story of the treaty, said Louie Pitt Jr., director of government affairs and planning.
The Jefferson County Fair Board decided to "devote our efforts to the 4-H and FFA members and provide them a venue to show and sell their animals," according to a written statement from the board. "Our incredible team of board members, staff and community partners did not want to cancel the rodeo, carnival, music or the other components of the county fair, but considering the gathering restrictions set forth by Gov. Brown, we really didn't have any other choice."
The board has been meeting 4-H, FFA and the Jefferson County Livestock Association to support the efforts of students, who raise animals and then show and auction them off at the fair.
They will still hold an animal show, but it will not be open to the public.
In addition, the fair staff are working on using social media to let community members show their flowers, photographs, canning, baking, quilting, crafting and Lego building.
"We will find a way to give you a showcase for your hard work," the board said. "We are also working on a virtual talent show."
Details are scheduled to be released around the first week of July.
"I am so very proud of our fair board for taking a long look at the guidance from Salem and not making a rash decision to cancel the whole fair," said fairgrounds coordinator Brian Crow. "They care deeply for Jefferson County and they waited as long as was feasible to monitor the daily changes in gathering rules.
"Canceling certain aspects of our fair have a huge financial impact on our communities, food vendors, commercial vendors, carnival provider, rodeo contractors, musical artists, staging and audio contractor and hoteliers," Crow said. "It is estimated that our county far has over a $1 million economic impact to our local and regional economies that we will not see this year. We are sad for our stakeholders and partners as many may not be able to survive the loss of business, as well as our community who were looking forward to a traditional fair."
The 20th anniversary of the Airshow of the Cascades was set for Aug. 28-29.
The board of directors considered a variety of options but ultimately decided to push the anniversary show to Aug. 27-28, 2021.
"Our commitment to presenting an exciting, enjoyable, up-close and personal experience led to making this very difficult decision for 2020 and looking to an outstanding event in 2021," said board chairman Joe Krenowicz.
People who have already bought tickets or donated as a sponsor can either donate that amount to help with this year's costs or use them next year, said board member Bruce Hoyt.
"We look forward to a great show in 2021 in coordination with the Erickson Aircraft Collection and the unwavering support of our committed volunteers, our major sponsors and our individual financial supporters," Hoyt said.
"A key concern was the Airshow Board's financial responsibility relative to the risks of a failed event that would be detrimental to future Airshows," said treasurer Rick Allen.
As gatherings of larger groups are allowed, the board plans to have fundraising and appreciation events with supporters, said vice chairman Nick Snead.
Fair board members include:
Amy Smith - Madras
Terry Weitman - Madras
Delford Johnson - Warm Springs
Kent Crook - Three Rivers
John McNamee - Antelope
The board has two vacancies. Those interested should call Brian Crow at 541-325-5050.
For Airshow of the Cascades ticket and donation refunds, visit AirshowOfTheCascades.com. Purchases can also be donated to help offset this year's costs.
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