Two festivals, musical kick-off today in Rainier and Scappoose

The 2013 Scappoose Pow Wow court: (from left to right) Brandon Patanjo, Sandra Hales, Johnny Kang, Lindsey Marquardt, Isaiah O’Brien, and Kristen Hansen.
The 2013 Scappoose Pow Wow court: (from left to right) Brandon Patanjo, Sandra Hales, Johnny Kang, Lindsey Marquardt, Isaiah O’Brien, and Kristen Hansen. Photo courtesy of Scappoose Community Club (2013).

Big events planned for today and through the weekend in Columbia County. For a complete list of each event’s offerings, schedules, pricing and registration deadlines, visit the web sites published with the listings below.

Scappoose Pow Wow: July 11-14; Veterans Park, Southwest JP West Road and Capt. Roger Kucera Way; concerts, cruise-in, grande and junior parades, Pow Wow court presentation, food and merchant vendors, “Battle of the Bands” competition, fun run, kids and teen zones, a mini Pow Wow, Texas Hold ’em poker and softball tournaments, wine tasting, beer zone and a mystery event; free; details:

Rainier Days in the Park: July 11-14; Rainier City Park, West A Street; live music and other entertainment, food and merchant vendors, pancake breakfast, parade, carnival, Ralph Painter Memorial Run, fireworks display, beer garden; free; details:

Annie the Musical: 7 p.m., July 11-13 and 18-20; and 2 p.m., July 13 (featuring understudies); Scappoose High School theater, 33700 S.E. High School Way; presented by Shoestring Community Players; directed by Serah Pope; $12 general admission, discounts available to children ages five and younger, and senior citizens; purchase tickets in advance at Bertucci’s candy shop in St. Helens or online at

The circus comes to Scappoose June 1

Photo courtesy of Culpepper & Merriweather Circus/2006

SCAPPOOSE — The Culpepper & Merriweather Circus, dubbed as America’s favorite old-fashioned big-top circus, will visit Scappoose on Sat, June 1, in the Cinnamon Tree Business Park, between Highway 30 and Scappoose Vernonia Highway.

A tent-raising ceremony and free Circus City tours will kick off the event at 9:30 a.m. The community is invited to meet and learn about the Culpepper & Merriweather Circus family, as well as interesting facts about the performers, the history of the show and the different species of animals featured in the acts. The presentation also addresses care of the circus animals.

The midway and box office opens at 1 p.m. with pony rides, a Moon Bounce, and concessions. The first show is from 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.; the second is from 4:30 to 6 p.m.

Admission on the day of the event is $7 for children ages 2-12, and $13 for adults. Children younger than two are free.

Discount tickets are available through the South Columbia County Chamber of Commerce at 2194 Columbia Blvd. in St. Helens. Stop by their office or call 503-396-1237 or 503-397-0685 for more information.

Easter egg hunts this weekend in Columbia County

Children excitedly hunt down treat filled plastic eggs during the 2012 mEGGa Easter egg hunt at the Columbia County Fairgrounds in St. Helens.


Several Easter egg hunts will be offered this weekend in Columbia County.


Middle/High School playing fields: 10 a.m. Sat, March 30; 471 S.W. Bel Air Drive; for infants through age 10; participants must be accompanied by an adult; sponsored by Clatskanie Kiwanis Club;

St. Helens

Saint Helens Market Fresh IGA: 8 a.m. Sat, March 30; 1111 Columbia Blvd.; held in the store; ages 11 and younger; 503-397-2288.

mEGGa egg hunt: Gates open at 9:30 a.m., hunt starts at 11 a.m. Sat, March 30; Columbia County Fairgrounds, 58892 Saulser Road; for infants and children through age 12; hunt features more than 30,000 candy-stuffed eggs; visits with the Easter Bunny, a petting zoo, pony rides and coloring contest also offered; free; 503-397-4231 or


Grace Lutheran Church: 9:45 a.m. Sun, March 31; 51737 S. Columbia River Hwy., Scappoose; 503-543-6555.

Grant Watts Elementary: 10 a.m. Sat, March 30 (rain or shine), playground at 52000 S.E. 3rd Place; for infants and children through age 12; thousands of plastic Easter eggs filled with candy, stickers, toys, and prize coupons; bring own baskets or collection containers; sponsored by Scappoose Kiwanis Club.


Riverfront Park: 10 a.m. Sat, March 30; corner of A and B streets, off Columbia River Hwy.; ages 10 and younger; visits with Easter bunny; sponsored by the Rainier Eagles; 503-556-2035.


Hawkins Park: 10 a.m. Sat, March 30; park located at the end of Park Drive, off Bridge Street; ages 10 and younger; sponsored by Vernonia Community Parent Teacher Association;

CHS offers vaccination, microchipping clinics

The Columbia Humane Society is offering vaccination clinics through March at three locations in Columbia County.

The next clinic is on Sat, Jan. 20, at the Rainier Fire Department, 211 W. 2nd St. Other clinics will follow on Feb. 3 at the Scappoose Fire Department, 52751 Columbia River Hwy., and on March 3 at the animal shelter, 2084 Oregon St., in St. Helens.

Pets will be seen from noon to 3 p.m. on a first-come, first-serve basis. Service numbers will be assigned to pet handlers no earlier than 11:45 a.m. Prices for services range from $10-$25. Microchipping also will be offered for $25. All dogs must be on leashes, and cats in carriers.

Pre-registration is required for people with more than two animals. For more information, including a detailed list of services offered, call the shelter at 503-396-3239, or visit their Web site by clicking here.

Winter weather school closures, delays for Wed, Dec. 19

The following school districts in Columbia County have reported late starts or closures today due to inclement winter weather, according to

Winter weather school closures, delays for Tue, Dec. 18

*Updated 8:32 a.m., Dec. 18, 2012*

The following school districts in Columbia County have reported late starts or closures today due to inclement winter weather, according to

Christmas Ships return to Columbia County this weekend

The 58th annual parade of Christmas Ships will visit Columbia County on Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 8-9.

The first run will begin at 6 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 8. Ships will assemble at the St. Helens City Docks and sail down the Columbia River to Columbia City, and weather permitting, cross to an RV park on the Washington side before returning to St. Helens, where the ships will dock overnight. The parade lasts for about two hours.

On Sunday, Dec. 9, the ships will depart from the city docks and meet up with additional fleet at 4:30 p.m. at Coon Island, along the Multnomah Channel. The ships will leave the island at 5 p.m., beginning their tour up the channel, through Scappoose, and on to the Willamette River.

Occasionally, weather, debris in the river, and other conditions can cause parade delays or cancellations. In the event of a cancellation, volunteers will update the organization’s Web site at

Information on prime viewing locations also can be found on the site.

News Bits: Local holiday happenings, Dec. 1-3


Reindeer Run: 8 a.m. Sat, Dec. 1; Columbia River Foursquare Church, 555 Commons Drive, St. Helens (across from DMV); 5K, 10K, or half-marathon (run or walk); proceeds benefit Columbia County Toy-n-Joy and the Columbia Food Bank; coffee, cocoa and snacks served in the church before and after race; prizes awarded to top three finishers in each category (male and female); cost $35-$60; includes souvenir Race Tech T-shirt and professional chip timed race; half-marathoners receive a custom Reindeer Run medal;  Route maps, registration information and other details at; or contact Molly Cooke, 503-396-0357, or

Breakfast with Santa: 8 to 11:30 a.m. Sat, Dec. 1; Columbia County Shrine Building, 315 N. 18th St., St. Helens (off Wyeth Street and Highway 30); breakfast of scrambled eggs, sausage, pancakes, milk, juice, coffee and tea served; bazaar table for Christmas shopping; $3 for ages 4-10, $5 for ages 11 and older; hosted by The Order of the Eastern Star, Mizpah No. 30 Chapter.

30th annual Merchant’s Toy n’ Joy benefit auction: 5 to 8 p.m., dinner; 5 to 6:45 p.m., silent auction; 7 p.m., oral auction, Sat, Dec. 1; Columbia County Fairgrounds Pavilion, 58892 Saulser Road, St. Helens; the event, sponsored by Columbia River Fire & Rescue, celebrates “30 Years of Giving” with a catered dinner and traditional brownie ala mode dessert; $15, tickets available at the door, or by visiting CRF&R administration offices at 270 Columbia Blvd.; 503-397-2990 or

Rainier Toy n’ Joy Breakfast: 7:30 to 10:30 a.m. Sat, Dec. 1; Rainier United Methodist, 101 C St. East, Rainier; 503-556-3440.

Rainier Christmas tree lighting ceremony: 6 p.m. Sat, Dec. 1; Rainier City Hall, 106 West B St., Rainier; 503-556-7301.

Free photos with Santa: 3 to 5 p.m. Wed, Dec. 5; WorkSource Oregon, 500 N. Hwy 30, Suite 320, St. Helens; visits with Santa and snacks; well-behaved pets welcome; canned food donations accepted; visitors are welcome to bring their own cameras for extra photos; 503-397-4995.

Watts House Museum Christmas tours: 4 to 8 p.m. every Fri-Sun in December, except the week of Christmas, when tours will be offered Fri-Sat only; 52432 S.E. First St., Scappoose; the historic house has been decorated for Christmas by volunteers with the Scappoose Historical Society, and other community groups; free admission; group tours available; 503-961-5621 or (click on “current event”).


St. Frederick Catholic Church: 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sat, Dec. 1; 175 S. 14th St., St. Helens; held in Buccini Hall; surprise packages, jams and jellies, arts and crafts, swags, white elephant  and more; light lunch available for purchase; 503-397-0148.

Avamere Assisted Living: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sat., Dec. 1; 2400 Gable Road, St. Helens; visits with Santa from noon to 2 p.m.; first 50 shoppers receive gift; 503-366-8070.

Jingle Jangle Christmas: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sat-Sun, Dec 1-2; private residence, 722 E. 2nd St., Rainier (uphill from Interstate Tavern); benefit for Susan G. Komen for the Cure; free coffee, hot chocolate and cider; credit cards accepted.

Columbia County Mental Health: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Mon, Dec. 3; 58646 McNulty Way, St. Helens; 503-397-5211.

Veteran’s Day ceremonies in south county

Events honoring Veteran’s Day in south Columbia County include:

• Scappoose: 10:30 a.m., Veterans Memorial at Heritage Park, Southeast Second and Olive streets; Bert Key, Veterans of Foreign Wars National Committee Member, will speak; Oregon Army National Guard firing detail, taps played, possible fly-over; sponsored by Scappoose VFW Post 4362; details: Ron Urban, 503-543-7482.

• St. Helens: 10:30 a.m., McCormick Park, 475 S. 18th St.; Terry Maloney, DAR Regent, and Brad Witt, will speak; Gene Hester, Vietnam vet, will be honored; flag rising, POW/MIA tribute, presentation about the meaning of Veteran’s Day, as well as an explanation of the 13 flag folds; those in attendance may bring old flags to be properly retired.

More Halloween fun in south county this weekend

Witches Brew and a Story, Too: 7 to 9 p.m. Sat, Oct. 27; Oak Meadows Inn Best Western or Americas Best Value Inn, both in St. Helens; a Halloween “tuck-in” story-time activity for children offered by staff from St. Helens Public Library; $20 a child, or $30 for two children; proceeds benefit the library; registration required; details: 503-397-4544.

Kids’ pumpkin painting: Noon to 4 p.m. Sat, Oct. 27; Masonic Building, ground floor, 231 S. First St., Old Town St. Helens; costumed volunteers help children can paint Halloween masterpieces on pumpkins; free, although donations of $2 a child is appreciated; proceeds benefit various public art projects in St. Helens; sponsored by the St. Helens Arts and Culture Commission.

Corn maze and pumpkin picking: 9 a.m. to dusk daily through Halloween; Bernet Farms, 51372 Dike Road, Scappoose; pumpkin picking (more than 20 varieties of pumpkins, squash and gourds) kids’ hay maze, hay rides, farm animal “looking” zoo, food and beverage vendors and farmers’ market; haunted corn maze from 7 to 10 p.m. Fri-Sun, Oct. 26-28; details: 971-506-8605, or

St. Helens Haunted Tours: Offered every half hour beginning at 7 p.m. Sat, Oct. 27; meet at the gazebo in Columbia View Park, off Strand Street, Old Town; visit old haunts and re-live the secret, spooky and creepy history of St. Helens; presented by Shoestring Community Players; $10; details: 503-366-4406, or

Kiwanis Daybreakers children’s fair: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sat, Oct. 27; St. Helens High School commons, 2375 Gable Road; booths by 28 community agencies, children’s activities, reptile road show, bounce house, face painting, “fishing” for prizes, crafts, performance by St. Helens High School Sound FX choir, dance academy presentations, a visit by Ronald McDonald and more; free; costumes encouraged.

Photos with the ‘Great Pumpkin’: 3 to 6:30 p.m., Sat, Oct. 27; Plaza Park, off First Street, in front of the Historic Courthouse, Old Town St. Helens; children in costume can have their pictures taken before or after the Little Spooks Parade; photos by Curt Davis Photography; small fee charged.

Little Spooks parade: 4:30 p.m., Sat, Oct. 27; children and their parents or guardians gather on the corner of St. Helens and First streets, Old Town St. Helens; parade begins at 5 p.m. Trick or treating at local business merchants will follow.

Little Spooks haunted house: 5:30 to 9 p.m., Sat, Oct. 27; Pythian Building, 215 S. First St., Old Town St. Helens.

Spirit of Halloweentown costume contest: 7 p.m., Sat, Oct. 27; Plaza Park, off First Street, in front of the Historic Courthouse, Old Town St. Helens; winner awarded $1,000 and becomes the Spirit of Halloweentown mayor; no registration required.

Tarot card trunk show and readings: 4 to 7 p.m., Sat, Oct. 27; Word for Word Books and Espresso, 293 S. St., Old Town St. Helens; 503-396-6910.

Tarot card readings: 6 to 9 p.m. Wed, Oct. 31; Klondike Restaurant, 71 Cowlitz St., Old Town St. Helens; 503-366-2634.