Link to Owner Dr. Robert B. Pamplin Jr.



News items include Rose Festival, Columbia Gorge Sternwheeler, Washington Park, Oregon Air National Guard, Oregon Parks and Recreation campgrounds, Friends of Columbia Gorge rebranding, Governor's Arts Awards and Powell's Books pickups

COURTESY PHOTO - The Columbia Gorge Sternwheeler is back in action for the 2020 season.A long weekend has arrived, and as we celebrate Memorial Day, the news on the arts, entertainment and activity fronts keeps coming as the battle through the health and economic crisis brought on by coronavirus/COVID-19 continues:

• Rose Festival — It's Rose Festival opening weekend! Well, live action at CityFair and fireworks over the Willamette River won't be taking place Friday, but it's the official kickoff of the very different Rose Festival.

The festival will hold a virtual opening night concert and fireworks on the festival's Facebook and Instagram pages, starting at 7 p.m. Friday, May 22. Hear a message of hope from the 2020 Rose Festival Court and festival leaders, watch an exclusive concert performance by Hit Machine and see virtual fireworks provided by Western Display Fireworks.

For more:

Then, on Saturday, May 23, there'll be the first of two days of the festival's Porch Parade presented by Pacific Power. A VIP procession will tour neighborhoods in Portland and suburbs where people have decorated their porches, windows and sidewalks and featured rose gardens that have signed up to be part of the Porch Parade. A second Porch Parade takes place Saturday, May 30.

Porch Parade entries will be on display through May 31, and will be designated with Porch Parade/Roses for Hope lawn signs. A virtual map is available at

Another "parade" as part of the festival's Parading in Place program will be the Grand Petite Parade, for which fans of all ages create shoe box-sized floats and submit images. There'll be a livestream presentation of entries shown at 2 p.m. Saturday, June 6 on Facebook and Instagram pages. See for info.

• Sternwheeler back — The Columbia Gorge Sternwheeler has returned to service for the 2020 season, taking passengers on sightseeing cruises starting at Cascade Locks.

For trip info, and more on the Portland Spirit tours, see

• Washington Park — The roadways to Washington Park will reopen on Friday, May 22.

Explore Washington Park is installing several handwashing stations, and Portland Parks and Recreation is reopening two bathrooms that have been closed.

"Memorial Day weekend typically kicks off our busy summer season. While COVID-19 has changed most everything this year, we're committed to making our beautiful park spaces welcoming and safe as communities begin reopening," said Heather McCarey, Explore Washington Park executive director. "We'll continue to evolve our services to provide the best experience for our visitors and support our cultural institutions."

Reopening dates have not been set for Hoyt Arboretum Visitor Center, Oregon Zoo, Portland Children's Museum, Portland Japanese Garden and World Forestry Center/Discovery Museum.

For more:

• Governor's awards — A reminder that the Oregon Arts Commission and Office of the Governor are taking nominations for the 2020 Governor's Arts Awards, through Tuesday, May 26. The awards recognize and honor individuals and organizations that have made significant contributions to the arts in Oregon.

There is a new award for 2020 for Virtual Arts Engagement, which allows for recognition of artists, organizations or others who have excelled at engaging Oregonians through online arts events and resources.

The Governor's Arts Awards ceremony is planned for Saturday, Sept. 12 at Chehalem Cultural Center in Newberg (or as part of a Facebook event by Artslandia, if the health/economic crisis prevents an in-person gathering).

For more:

• Flyovers — The Oregon Air National Guard will mark Memorial Day weekend — and salute Oregonians on the frontline of the pandemic and citizens dealing with economic difficulties — with scheduled flyovers of its F-15 Eagle planes over hospitals and other locations, Friday, May 22 and Monday, May 25.

The flyovers are a joint effort of Oregon's 173rd Fighter Wing, based in Klamath Falls, and the 142nd Wing based in Portland.

Flyovers on Friday will include Legacy Salmon Creek Medical Center in Vancouver, Washington (8:48 a.m.) and sites in central and eastern Oregon.

On Monday, flyovers take place over southern and coastal Oregon communities.

• Campgrounds opening — The Oregon Parks and Recreation Department will offer limited camping at many state park campgrounds, starting June 9. A list of campgrounds set to open is still being finalized and will be published at by the end of May.

Rules will include choosing a park close to home, and not traveling when sick, as well as visiting with members of your household.

For more:

• New branding — Friends of the Columbia Gorge has capped a two-year partnership with Grady Britton, one of Portland's top marketing agencies, on new branding. It's also Friend's 40th anniversary.

Friends was selected as Britton's 2019 grant winner through a program that this year celebrates its 10th anniversary of awarding a Portland-area nonprofit $25,000 in-kind branding and marketing services. From their work together, Friends celebrates a refreshed brand, including its first official logo, a new and nature-based color palette, modern typography and collateral, along with focused messaging.

For more:

• Free pickup — Powell's Books will provide free contactless store pickup at the downtown location, 1005 W. Burnside. Pickups will be done at Northwest 11th Avenue and Couch Street. The process: Shop at, choose a store pickup at checkout, select a time slot for pickup and go get your books.

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