The parade is scheduled for Saturday, June 18, beginning at Emmert Motors on Columbia Boulevard.

COURTESY PHOTO: CITY OF ST. HELENS - Residents of St. Helens enjoy the 2019 Kiwanis ParadeAfter two years of COVID-related delays, the Kiwanis Community Parade is finally set to resume in St. Helens on Saturday, June 18.

Parade committee member Judy Thompson said the 100-year-old parade means a lot to the community.

"The last parade was 2019," Thompson said, noting it takes time putting the event together. "We just kept putting one step in front of the other. There's a lot to go through, to rally sponsors."

The parade this year will start at Emmert Motors at the beginning of Columbia Boulevard and will travel down the boulevard, then turn to go past the theater on South First Street. The parade will exit onto the riverfront property.

"People line the streets, anywhere along there," Thompson said. "You grab a chair and make it a parade-watching party."

Categories in the parade include the rodeo court, marching bands, marching groups, clowns and antique vehicles (1939 vintage and older).

Columbia County Commissioner Henry Heimuller will serve as grand marshal of this year's parade. The theme of the parade is "Coming Back Together 2022."

The parade will also feature a performance by Portland band The Beat Goes On.

"I will say that we didn't have to rally very hard (to bring it back)," Thompson said. "People wanted the parade really bad. People were very willing to sponsor and we're excited about having the parade come back."

The parade has been known by many names over the years — the Salmon Derby, River City Days, Riverfest and Port-O-Fun.

"In the early years, it was called St. Hellions Days and the mascot was a little devil," Thompson said. "A lot of people didn't like that, and it didn't last too long."

Thompson said the annual Kiwanis Parade provides enjoyment for the entire family.

"It's creating memories," she said. "It's like a consolidated, condensed version of who's who in our community. … You get to be in awe of all of the creativity and good will. People are happy. It's just a neat experience."

Thompson added, "The kids are wide-eyed. That's the most precious thing, is to see the kids, and even the seniors."

All parade participants are encouraged to pre-register. Parade registration is from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m., with parade judging taking place at 11 before the parade begins at noon. For more information, you can email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

You count on us to stay informed and we depend on you to fund our efforts. Quality local journalism takes time and money. Please support us to protect the future of community journalism.

Have a thought or opinion on the news of the day? Get on your soapbox and share your opinions with the world. Send us a Letter to the Editor!