Join us for the 105th annual Rhododendron Festival in Florence Oregon
May 18, 19, and 20 come down for the annual Rhododendron Festival in Florence Oregon. The second oldest flower festival in Oregon and third oldest on the West Coast, this festival celebrates the wild rhododendrons that thrive along the Oregon coastline. Beginning on Friday, the event kicks off with the Rhody Pageant to crown “Queen Rhododendra”, typically a local high school girl. The winner also receives and scholarship.
The Rhododendron is native to this area and used to be a sign to farmers that summer was just around the corner when they would see the familiar pink and white come out in full bloom along the paths and roadways. This also was a sign from God that growth and prosperity was on its way.
This year’s theme is “Nothing Short of Wild” and will feature local artists, crafts, amazing fair-style food and more. The famous Sea Lion Caves, also celebrating its 80th anniversary, will be the Grand Marshall this year and showcases the wild and crazy Oregon Coast. The three day event will also hold a 5k and 10K run and car show. If you’re adventurous enough sign up at the event coordinators website by emailing them directly.
The Rhododendron Festival was first established in 1908 and has run continually ever since except for the years during 1916 through 1933 during World War II and then again from 1942 to 1946 because of the depression era. But regardless of the hiccups, it has not slowed down the passion and drive Florence residents have to keep this tradition going. Starting out with less than 500 people, the event has grown to almost 10,000 visitors and residents coming out each year to participate in the festival.
Enjoy arts and crafts, dozens of musical performances, antique and hot rod car show, Rhody Run, games, prizes, carnivals and of course the Rhododendron Parade. Don’t miss this event this year sponsored by the Florence Chamber of Commerce. We hope to see you there!