Columbia County Celebrates Halloweentown!

Columbia County-  Leaves are dropping along with the temperature, Fall has arrived and Halloween is quickly approaching for Columbia County.   With the movie Halloweentown filmed in St. Helens in 1998, the city is still celebrating and the many across Columbia County have also embraced this holiday.

Photo Courtesy of Spirit of Halloweentown Facebook. Brian Fawcett, Clatskanie Resident. Sitting 2nd to the left bottom row between his sister and mother.

Local citizens have ties to the movie as many had their debut acting in the movie as extras such as Rainier Mayor, Jerry Cole along with Clatskanie resident, Brian Fawcett.  Brian was a kid at the time who got his first paycheck as an extra to perform alongside his sister and mom in an Aladdin Costume.  Brian shared that his favorite memory of the movie was, “Being part of a locally made movie with my family was a cool experience. And watching the movie near Halloween after the fact to find myself, my mom, and my sister in random scenes made for some good memories.”  Maybe that’s why so many people jump at the chance to celebrate Halloween and welcome curious tourists.

The movie has a cult following that will bring a lot of tourists to the area for Halloween the month of October for a variety of activities.  To view, a list of Spirit of Halloweentown events go to www.discovercolumbiacounty.com and www.keepitlocalcc.com to view many local events.  SHEDCO (ST Helens Economic Development Corporation) has partnered with several local groups to host a few events for locals to have some fun along with the tourists and ways they can get engaged to show off their local community.

A signature event to kick off the month-long celebration is the Halloweentown Parade that is on Oct 7th at 3:00 PM.   Last year,  the parade had a Witches Float, Star Wars of Oregon, Columbia County Sherrif Department, Aliens, Zombie fighters, Scary Clown Bikers and more participated.  The 2nd year parade is sure to outshine the past year.  When asked what will make this year different?” Gretchen Williams, Parade Organizer, replied, “For me, the parade this year is different from the last because of the willingness from groups to participate. Many crowd favorites from last year contacted me immediately wanting to return. I didn’t even have to ask them! I have several families who have signed up to participate simply because they love Halloween. I’m very excited to see their entries! We are on track to surpass the number of entries we had last year. Something else that is new this year is that I did not have to charge an entry fee. Thanks to several additional sponsors, everyone can participate for free.”  Afterwards, the Community Pumpkin lightening will take place in the Holiday Plaza at 7:00 PM.

Ways for you to get involved:

  • September 25th-Oct 6th Participate in a Scarecrow Contest.  Open to all citizens and businesses Across Columbia County are invited to put up a ScareCrow for the Spirit of Halloweentown ScareCrow Contest.  Winners get $150 sponsored by the City of St. Helens.  You can post your photos to the FB page between Sept 25th- Oct 6th details on the facebook page.
  • Oct 7th – Halloweentown Parade sponsored by SCC Chamber of Commerce, SHEDCO & Columbia River PUD Oct 7th.  Locals can participate in the parade for free by emailing  sohtparade2017@gmail.com for an application.  
  • Oct 7th- The Bite of Columbia County – Be a spectator!  It’s a fundraiser for the Columbia Pacific Food Bank & St Helens BackPack Program.  Get your tickets online for $30.00 each or 2 for $50.00 or you can purchase at Bertucci’s and Houlton Bakery.  You’ll get to sample foods from over 20 local restaurants.
  • Oct 14th- Columbia County Rotary- Monster Dash Fundraiser for local Columbia County Veterans. Sign up here.
  • October 6th – Oct 30th.  If you like to get dressed up in costume, you can become a WayFinding Witch.  What’s that?  It’s a chance to share our local businesses and happenings with the tourists in your Halloween Costume.  Click on the link, to sign up for a volunteer spot.
  • Oct 15th – Meet and Treat at Aggies featuring Kimberly Brown. Locals use your zip code to receive a discount on tickets.  Follow the event on Facebook for more information. 
  • Oct 21st – Annual Masquerade Charity Ball hosted by Windemere Foundation Columbia County
  • Oct 19th,20,21st at 7:00 PM & 21st at 2 PM ShoeString Theatre, “The War of the Worlds” on October 19, 20, 21 at 7 pm, and October 21 for a 2 pm matinee.  Tickets on Sale September 30th online or at Bertucci’s. 

 


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 www.bernetfarms.com.

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 www.sscpmusicals.com.

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.


Spooky bedtime stories, haunted tours, a pumpkin festival and more featured Saturday in St. Helens and Scappoose

A girl and her mother craft designs on a pumpkin during the first session of the St. Helens Arts and Culture Commission’s kids’ pumpkin painting activity on Oct. 13.
The commission will offer the activity again tomorrow, Oct. 20, from noon to 4 p.m. in the Masonic Building in Old Town St. Helens. Photo courtesy of Michelle Tullock.

South Columbia County is bursting at the seams with events for people of all ages on Saturday, Oct. 20. The list of local offerings include:

Kids’ pumpkin painting: Noon to 4 p.m.; 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.

Witches Brew and a Story, Too: 7 to 9 p.m.; 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; also offered Oct. 26-27.

Pumpkin Fest: 9 a.m. to dusk; 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, pumpkin run, pumpkin games, bouncy castle, live music, food and beverage vendors, farmers’ market, “Find the Golden Pumpkin” contest ($100 prize), and a haunted corn maze from 7 to 10 p.m.; details: 971-506-8605, or www.bernetfarms.com.

St. Helens Haunted Tours: Offered every half hour beginning at 7 p.m.; 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 www.sscpmusicals.com; also offered Oct. 25-27.

Halloween Cruise/Haunted Boats: All day; city docks, located behind the county courthouse, Old Town St. Helens; presented by Columbia River Yachting Association; details: 253-312-1101; also offered Oct. 21.

Great Pumpkin Lighting: 6 p.m., Plaza Park, Old Town St. Helens.

Dogtoberfest: 3 to 7 p.m.; Columbia Humane Society, 2084 Oregon St., St. Helens; dog Halloween costume contest, games and prizes; bratwurst meal by Dockside Steak & Pasta with cookies by Houlton Bakery ($8), microbrews by Captured by Porches ($3); admission $5; proceeds benefit the shelter; donations of dry dog food, bleach and paper towels for the shelter will be accepted; details: 503-397-4353, or www.columbiahumane.org.

Mystery shopping: Noon-6 p.m.; shop at random businesses in Old Town St. Helens to win one of 10 $50 Target gift cards.

Haunted Hot Rod Cruise-in and Hearse Rally: Noon to 5 p.m., Plaza Square and Strand Street, Old Town St. Helens; dozens of haunted hot rods on display; free.

Fabulous Finds bazaar: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., home of Johneta Johnson, 58972 Ward Drive, St. Helens; Silpada jewelry, PartyLite candles, Watkins, River City Candy Company, holiday centerpieces by j.ann designs, cards by Johneta and Kathy, purses, scarfs and jewelry by Rochelle; details: 503-397-2292.


Arts and culture commission offers pumpkin painting for kids

ST. HELENS — Children can paint Halloween masterpieces on pumpkins from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 13, in the Masonic Building at 231 S. First St. in “Olde Towne” St. Helens.

The activity, sponsored by the St. Helens Arts and Cultural Commission, will be held on the ground floor of the building. There is no cost to participate; however, the commission appreciates donations of $2 or more to help fund various public art projects in town.

All children in attendance must be accompanied by an adult. Costumed volunteers will be on hand to help children with their creations.

Pumpkins for the activity were donated by The Pumpkin Patch on Sauvie Island.

For those unable to attend, the activity will be offered again from noon to 4 p.m. Oct. 20.


Halloweentown Returns to St. Helens

The scarecrows line the streets of St. Helens

Ushered in by the lighting of the Great Pumpkin on October 1st, the Spirit of Halloweentown is upon us in Saint Helens. Visit Olde Towne for a month-long celebration of the season and see the giant scarecrows, fall colors and merchants turned to immortal forms as fairies, witches, ghosts and ghouls from Friday afternoon until Sunday at 3pm. Wear your costume and take advantage of special offers at local businesses, or browse boutiques and thrift stores to  find the perfect costume.

This year, activities include an I-Spy Adventure and Coloring Contest, The Chronicle’s Little Spooks Parade, Kids Carnival put on by Kiwanis, and the most anticipated activity in the Spirit of Halloweentown:  the Scarecrow Contest. Scarecrows line the streets of the Houlton and Riverfront Districts of Olde Towne as local shops and eateries try to outdo one another to create the most creative and clever scarecrow. Vote for your favorites with raffle tickets to benefit the Columbia County Food Bank.

For a full list of activities and their dates, times and locations, please visit http://sccchamber.org/SOHA