Festivals Add Fun and Flavor to a Stay on Washington’s Long Beach Peninsula

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With over 70-plus festivals and events scheduled for 2014 on Washington's Long Beach Peninsula, visitors have many added reasons to visit. These local festivals also provide an opportunity for visitors to learn and hear stories from local residents.

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Bright banners and fanciful kites color the Long Beach during the week-long Washington State International Kite Festival in August.

Residents are happy to share stories, skills and local secrets with festival goers.

Festivals and events with wide visitor appeal will add extra fun to the many ongoing attractions on Washington’s Long Beach Peninsula this year. Over 70 visitor-oriented events, focused on food, heritage, outdoor recreation and more are planned for 2014.

“Visitors looking to connect more closely with our communities can do so almost any weekend this year with events that appeal to a broad range of interests,” said Andi Day, executive director, Long Beach Peninsula Visitors Bureau. “As a bonus, many residents are happy to share stories, skills and local secrets with festival goers.”

Here’s a selection of 2014 highlighted and/or major events:

Razor Clam Festival, April 19 and 20, Long Beach. Bringing back a favorite festival of the 1940s, this year’s event included clam digging lessons, a chowder cook-off, a chef-judged clam fritter contest, live music, and more.

Beach to Chowder 5K Run/Walk and 10K Run, June 14, 9 to 11:30AM, Long Beach. Notable for its coastal course and steaming bowls of clam chowder, the event takes place on hard-pack sand with cooling breezes and spectacular views of the Pacific Ocean.

Doggie Olympic Games, June 28, 4 to 7PM, June 27 and 28, 1 to 4PM, Bolstad Ave. beach approach/Long Beach. This lively, interactive event gives socialized pooches a chance to compete for fun and medals. Crowd favorites include the Peanut Butter Lick, Dunking for (Hot) Dogs and Nadia Comaneci Agility.

Sandsations (July 19, 9:30AM to 3:30PM, Bolstad Ave. beach approach/Long Beach) and City Sandsations (July 16 through 20, Veterans Field/Long Beach). Mountains of sand in town and, during the big competition, at the beach are transformed into artful displays. Visitors can learn sand-sculpting techniques and/or enter for fun or prizes.

Blues and Seafood, August 15 and 16, Port of Ilwaco, and Jazz & Oysters, August 17, Ocean Park. These popular, back-to-back music and food festivals provide a weekend of lively entertainment. Attend one or both events with special discounts when purchasing a weekend pass.

Washington State International Kite Festival, August 18 through 24, Bolstad Ave. beach approach/Long Beach. The biggest and most colorful event of the year, this ever-popular festival promises whimsical, artistic and dramatic displays, as well as playful and awe-inspiring competitions.

Cape Disappointment Sprint Triathlon and Duathlon, September 20, 9AM until noon, Ilwaco. Building on a successful first year, this challenging event includes a swim in Black Lake, ride on Discovery Trail and run on the Black Lake Trail system.

Wild Mushroom Celebration, Oct. 1 through Nov. 15, Long Beach Peninsula. Mushroom lovers are invited to savor the abundance and variety of edible wild mushrooms during the peak of fall harvest. Chef dinners, wine or beer and mushroom pairings, cooking classes, identification workshops are among the special offerings.

Cranberrian Fair, October 11 and 12, Ilwaco and Long Beach. An opportunity to share in the heritage of the century-old cranberry harvest on the Long Beach Peninsula, during the peak of harvest season.

‘Ocian in View’ Cultural Weekend, November 7 and 8, Ilwaco. A legacy of the Lewis and Clark Bicentennial Commemoration, ‘Ocian in View’ presents programs and tours that illuminate history at the mouth of the Columbia River.

Among the other events on the Long Beach Peninsula are several Fourth of July celebrations; Long Beach’s NPRA-Sanctioned Rodeo (July 26-27), Naselle’s Finnish American Folk Festival (July 25-27), the Cape Disappointment State Park Waikiki Concert Series; the downtown Long Beach, family friendly Summerfest series; several farmers markets; art walks, exhibits, shows and tours; organized beach clean ups; a host of holiday events; and more.

About the Long Beach Peninsula
With its mix of sensational restaurants, local seafood, ocean view lodging, unique museums and attractions, lighthouses, fine art galleries, meandering trails, birding spots, and, above all, its 28-mile, windswept beach, the Long Beach Peninsula continues to be one of the Northwest’s most enjoyable and refreshing getaway destinations.

For event and visitor information, please call the Long Beach Peninsula Visitors Bureau at 800-451-2542 or access http://www.funbeach.com.

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