What exactly is Christmas Storybook Land? Recently, Alex Paul, Linn County Reporter for the Democrat Herald, wrote this article about the 2018 show. The free family event takes place every year at the Linn County Fair & Expo Center in Albany, Oregon. Read on to discover more and plan your next holiday trip to the Willamette Valley.
The 42nd Christmas Storybook Land
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas at the Linn County Fair & Expo Center, because hundreds of volunteers have been working like Santa’s elves to create the 42nd annual Christmas Storybook Land.
Thousands of colorful holiday lights have been strung on cables 10 feet in the air, some 1,300 Christmas trees donated by Weyerhaeuser are standing tall and more than 450 bears of all sizes and shapes have emerged from hibernation to welcome more than 40,000 guests over the next two weeks.
“We keep growing every year,” said volunteer and board member Joyce Moreira. “We’re working against the clock right now, but we’ll make it by Thursday night when we have a special viewing for volunteers and sponsors. We call it our VIP night. We open for the public Friday at 6:30 p.m.”
Moreira said she became a volunteer in 2005 after she retired from a 35-year career in the business division at Linn-Benton Community College.
“I live down the street and I used to bring my son to Christmas Storybook Land every year,” she said. “We are seeing third-generations coming now.”
For many years, Jim Stinson of Corvallis spent Monday through Friday in the cab of a semitruck hauling lumber products to southern California and glass back to Oregon and Washington.
But now the bearded Stinson is more grounded in the mid-valley and says he enjoys seeing the faces of children light up when they see the colorful Storybook Land displays. And, since the man with the white beard looks good in a bright red suit and cap, he gets to see those faces up close.
“I just love kids,” said Stinson, whose wife Linda also volunteers.
“Of course, Santa’s House is my favorite display. I think kids make the world go round.”
On Wednesday afternoon, he was busy “sweeping up,” just one of many daily chores needed to keep progress moving forward.
Volunteer Faye Creecy said this year’s overall theme is “Star Wars” and will feature a new display: local kids dressed as characters from the franchise and a visit by the Cloud City Garrison of the 501st Legion and Kashyyyk Base, with the help of Concordia Clan of the Mandalorian Mercs Costume Club and Astromech R2 Builders Club.
The Star Wars re-enactors will be at Christmas Storybook Land from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Dec. 9.
Creecy said children will especially enjoy the Grinch scene, the new moving saw at the Paul Bunyan display, and the numerous costumed characters walking around.
“The Our Town display is really coming together,” she said. “It’s really good-looking.”
Creecy said volunteers are especially proud of a new 9-foot train covered with lights and features moving wheels. It sits in the courtyard.
Tuesday through Friday, children through third grade (with their parents) are encouraged to come visit Santa and Mrs. Claus from 9:00 to 11:30 a.m. and 12:30 to 2:30 p.m.
Last year, nearly 4,000 children took part.
Volunteer and former board member Monte James was busy setting up Christmas trees Wednesday and said he has been a volunteer for about 15 years. He became one at the suggestion of Christmas Storybook Land co-founder Don Albright.
“I used to attend Christmas Storybook Land when I was a kid at the old fairgrounds,” James said.
James said he put up about 500 trees and helped string the row-upon-row of metal cables that hold lights for all of the displays.
“He’s an all-around helper,” Creecy said of James’ skills.
She also reminded families to bring their cameras.
It takes 11 semitrailers to hold all of the scenery, costumes, lights and other equipment used to make Christmas Storybook Land come to life.
Last year, more than 27,000 food items were donated to Fish of Albany and 40,280 people attended the event over its two-week run.
The all-volunteer organization is headed up by a board of directors including: President: Carol Wood; Vice-President: Bonnie Brown; Secretary: Joyce Moreira; Treasurer: Teresa Stout; Brian Baker, Marcie Barksdale, Bonnie Brown, Terry Burke, Tami Chaput, Faye Creecy, Karen Dahlinger, Sara Frazer, Tia Gilbert, Brad Hamlin, Derral Hunt, Kymberly McPhie, Joyce Moreira, Linda Morris, Lisa Muller, Richard Muller, Kimberly Samard, Paul Schmierer, Patty Skinner and Teresa Stout.
The Linn County Fair & Expo Center hosts the annual event at no charge.
*From an article by Alex Paul (abbreviated) published November 29, 2018
Where: Linn County Fair & Expo Center, 3700 Knox Butte Road
Admission: Free, but non-perishable food items; toys for Marine Corps Toys For Tots, accepted
Hours: Nov. 30-Dec. 14: Monday through Thursday, 6:30-8:30 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 8:30 p.m; Fridays, Dec. 7 and Dec. 14: 2 to 8:30 p.m. Wheelchairs and assistance can be provided.
More information: www.christmasstorybookland.org.
Once again, the Albany Visitors Association is helping to make the holiday season bright by sponsoring the 31st Annual Night Time Magic Holiday Light Program. Residents are encouraged to enter this contest for the best home/business light displays.
Three winners will be selected and one group entry will be awarded the “Best Neighborly Effort.” Winners will be entitled to bragging rights for the entire year, and one of three fabulous prizes as determined by the prize committee. Be a part of Historic Albany’s “Magic!”
The contest is an annual tradition to help the city celebrate the season and create holiday lights for residents and visitors to enjoy. Participants are encouraged to share the source for their inspiration such as: family tradition; favorite holiday book, movie or special; music, dance or art; special collection; just lights, lights and more lights—the more the merrier!; or your own idea or inspiration for creating the display.
Entry forms can be picked up (or requested via e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org) and returned to Albany Visitors Association at 110 3rd Ave SE, Albany, OR 9732. Or download an entry form and return per instructions above.
Winners will be announced by December 15, 2018 and prize distribution made soon after.
People wishing to drive the route to look at the entries can pick up a list of participants and a map at the Albany Visitors Association beginning December 15, 2018. Lights will be up through January 1, 2019.
Thank you to all the homeowners who participate in this program, without your efforts this wonderful community tradition would not be possible.
Capturing the spirit of giving and sharing is what the holidays are all about. We’d love for you to visit us this season, and hope the following highlights from our best December events will help you plan your trip.
December 1st – 10th Win Free Tickets Facebook Contest – to Christmas Caroling by Horse-Drawn Wagon You have 10 days (starting on December 1st) to enter AVA’s Facebook contest and win a pair of tickets (up to $20 value) to the Christmas Caroling by Horse-Drawn Wagon event on the night of December 21st or 22nd at 8:00 p.m. The rules are easy! (1) Like our AVA Facebook page (not just the contest post), (2) like the contest post dated December 1st, and (3) tag a friend in the post comment section. Winners will be selected from the comments by random drawing and will have until December 14th to pick up their tickets from our office. We will notify the winners on our Facebook page. This is a pretty cool prize because the event is sold out every year. Click here for our Facebook page.
December 1st through 14th Christmas Storybook Land is Albany’s best family Christmas show. Held at the Linn County Fair & Exposition Center on Knox Butte Rd, this fantasy world is an enormous Christmas forest wonderland with over 110 scenes of characters from nursery rhymes, children’s stories, and family movies, two elaborate model train displays, a Victorian village, plus the North Pole with Santa and Mrs. Claus. Visit the event website for complete hours and more information at www.ChristmasStorybookLand.org
December 1st, 8th, and 15th Pictures with Santa at the Albany Carousel UPDATED, ADDITIONAL DAYS ADDED: Three Sundays, Dec 2nd, 9th, and 16th have been added to this event!! (All times are from 11:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m.) On three Saturdays this month, from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., bring your own camera and snag a family photo with Santa at this free event. All are invited. Although this event is free, donations to the non-profit carousel are welcome!
December 1st Sick Town Derby This family-friendly event at the Linn County Fair & Expo Center is for all ages. There will be food vendors, a beer garden, Sick Town merchandise, half-time fun and more! Tickets cost $10 in advance or $12 at the door. Doors open at 5 p.m. for Live Roller Derby Action at 6:00 p.m. For more information and tickets, visit the Derby Dames website https://www.sicktownderbydames.com
SOLD OUT!!!! December 2nd Pioneer Children’s Christmas Party at Monteith House Celebrate the Christmas season the way the pioneers would have done in the 1800s by attending this children’s party at the Monteith House. Ages 5 though 16 can make pioneer Christmas crafts, decorate the Christmas tree at the Monteith House, sing carols, eat cookies, and ride on a horse-drawn wagon in the “Twice Around Downtown Christmas Parade” at 5:00 p.m. The cost is $15 per child and $10 for additional siblings. Reserve your child’s spot today by calling the Albany Visitors Association at 541-928-0911. Space is limited.
December 2nd Downtown Twice Around Christmas Parade The Downtown Twice Around Christmas Parade winds its way through the streets of Historic Downtown Albany on Sunday at 5 p.m. rain or shine. Santa often arrives on an antique firetruck! The parade starts at the corner of Broadalbin and First, heads west down First to Calapooia, heads south on Calapooia to Second, heads east on Second to Broadalbin, heads north on Broadalbin to First, and then around again—ending up at Two Rivers Market parking lot on the corner of Second and Ferry. Immediately following the parade, the Community Tree is lit. Telephone the Albany Downtown Association at 541-928-2469 for more information.
December 6th Festival of Wreaths and Auction Catch the perfect holiday wreath at the Albany Carousel; this great fundraiser runs from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. This is an adult event. Admission price includes wine, a special carousel wine glass, hors d’oeuvres, and live music; plus silent and live auctions—all part of the $20 package. Tickets available at the Carousel Gift Shop or telephone 541-497-2934.
December 7th First Friday in Downtown Albany Get your art on and do a little holiday shopping in downtown Albany. Gallery Calapooia will be filled with wonderful gift ideas, plus you can meet the artists and enjoy complimentary wine and appetizers from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 pm. Telephone the gallery at 541-971-5701 for more information. At Urban Ag, shop their extended First Friday hours until 8:00 p.m. They’ll have plenty of tools and other gear waiting to be plucked for your picky gardening friends. Gift cards are available as well. Visit Urban Ag at 124 SW Ellsworth. As you make your way through downtown, be sure to visit other participating shops and restaurants, including The Natty Dresser and Sweet Red Bistro.
December 7th (other dates: 8th, 9th, 13th, 14th, 15th, 16th, 20th, 21st, 22nd) The Albany Community Theater presents the live performance of “The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe.” This new dramatization of C.S. Lewis’ classic, set in the land of Narnia, faithfully recreates the magic and mystery of Aslan, the great lion, his struggle with the White Witch, and the adventures of four children who inadvertently wander from an old wardrobe into the exciting, never-to-be-forgotten Narnia. This story of love, faith, courage and giving, with its triumph of good over evil, is a true celebration of life. Visit ACT’s website for performance times and ticket information at http://www.albanycivic.org/shows/the-lion-the-witch-and-the-wardrobe/
December 8th Free Christmas Movie Albany Downtown Association (ADA) and the Pix Theatre will partner to show a free classic Christmas movie for the whole family. (Movie title will be announced closer to the date.) Doors open at 9:30 a.m. and the movie starts at 10:00 a.m. Come early, especially if you are a large group, as the theater fills up quickly! This is a free event and first come first seated. Please bring a non-perishable food item for donation to the Salvation Army Food Drive if you can. For questions, telephone the ADA at 541-928-2469.
December 9th Annual Christmas Parlour Tour of Historic Homes and Buildings From 2:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. the 39th year of the tour will feature beautifully decorated historic houses, museums, churches, historic library, and a downtown loft. This is one of only two tours offered per year that include the interiors of historic homes. Father Christmas will be out with an enormous bag of treats and the Monteith House and Museum will be lit by oil lamp and fire-light, warming your spirit. Chafin Farms’ beautiful draft horses will merrily transport you around the historic districts with sleigh bells jingling, and the antique trolley will transport you back to a different era. Tour participants will be encouraged to ring the church bell at Whitespires Church and the fireplace will be crackling at the Carnegie Library. This jolly holiday event includes light refreshments and loads of happiness all for the ticket price of $15. Tickets can be purchased ahead of the tour online or the day of the tour, at Albany Visitors Association. Telephone 541-928-0911 for more information.
December 14th, 15th, 21st, 22nd, 23rd Christmas Caroling by Horse-Drawn Wagon If you didn’t win tickets during our Facebook contest, don’t worry, you still might be able to snag tickets by calling our office at 541-928-0911. There are several time slots throughout the event evenings to join in this wonderful Albany tradition. The family-friendly event costs $10 for adults and $5 for children under the age of 12. Call soon, as we expect this event to sell out.
December 15th Monster Truck Thunder For the first time ever, the Linn County Fairgrounds will host ground-pounding Monster Trucks. This wild action auto show is perfect for kids (both adult and actual kiddos) who love things that go “zoom-zoom, boom-boom!” Two show-times are available on the 15th: 2:00 p.m. or 7:30 p.m. All advance tickets receive a free Pit Party pass ($10 Value). For tickets visit https://monstertruckthunder.ticketleap.com/.
December 15th Shop ’Til You Drop Still have important Santa duties to attend to? Why not let the kids go to a safe Christmas pajama party with movie, crafts, games and treats while you finish your holiday shopping, wrapping, or enjoy a rare parents’ evening out. The Mid-Willamette Family YMCA is hosting this activity from 2:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. The cost is $15 for Y members and $17 for non-members. For information telephone 541-928-0071.
December 22nd (and other dates throughout December and other months) Live Music at Calapooia Brewing Company The guest artist for the 22nd is Mikael. Born and raised in Oregon, Mikael creates music with hints of soul and blues driven guitar riffs, and adds vivid story telling to create a compelling performance. For more information about other musical guests and dates and times, visit: Calapooia Brewing
December 24th Whitespires Church Christmas Caroling Sing-along Come and celebrate the Christmas Eve spirit with family and friends singing along to classic carols inside historic Whitespires Church. All are welcome to attend. The sing-along starts at 7:00 p.m. and lasts until 8:00 p.m. The church is located at 510 SW 5th Ave in Albany. Telephone 541-928-2469 for more information.
December 31st New Year’s Eve Hoof N’ Holler Bullriding and Dance Wild West Events & Sweeney Promotions invites you to the biggest New Year’s Eve Event of its kind. Come on out to the Linn County Fair & Expo Center to enjoy this fun event. Complete with pyrotechnics, special effects, heated arena, concert sound and lighting. Gates open at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $29 pre-paid or $35 at the door (cash only at door). Online tickets: http://hoofnholler.com. Stay at one of Albany’s newly remodeled hotel properties nearby, and you won’t have to worry about driving. (See below!)
Bonus: Hotel Special Rate! Get ready for the holidays! The Phoenix Inn Suites is running their “Winter Special” from November 25th through January 10th. Your suite of choice is $79 (plus applicable taxes) per night. Book direct and mention the “Winter Special” to receive these rates: 541-926-5696, or visit AVAs “Sweet Dreams” web page for information about other Albany hotels.
Are you a romantic soul yearning for a Victorian Christmas? If so, you really need to know about the Albany Annual Christmas Parlour Tour of Historic Homes and Buildings. Coming up on Sunday, December 9, 2018, from 2:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., the 39th annual tour will feature beautifully decorated historic houses, museums, churches, historic library, and a downtown loft. This is one of only two tours offered per year that include interiors of historic homes.
(*Win tickets to this event; see below in the “Win free tickets” section!)
Father Christmas will be out with an enormous bag of treats and the Monteith House and Museum will be lit by oil lamp and fire-light, warming your spirit.
Chafin Farms’ beautiful draft horses will merrily transport you around the historic districts with sleigh bells jingling, and the antique trolley will transport you back to a different era. Tour participants will be encouraged to ring the church bell at Whitespires Church and the fireplace will be crackling at the Carnegie Library.
While the tour is considered “self-guided,” you can ride either the trolley or the horse and wagon around to each stop (this is included in the ticket price) or drive your own car, trek by bike or two legs, or any other mode of alternative transportation. A map will be provided the day of the tour.
This jolly holiday event includes refreshments and loads of happiness, all for the ticket price of $15. Tickets can be purchased ahead of the tour online or the day of the tour, at Albany Visitors Association.
We will be giving away three pairs of tickets ($30 value) to the tour! Simply subscribe to our monthly events e-newsletter between November 20th and December 1st to be entered in the drawing. Current subscribers are included. We will contact winners on December 4th.
After the Parlour Tour, you have an opportunity to attend an absolutely divine benefit supper. Sybaris Bistro will host a “historic” dinner at their restaurant on December 9th at 5:00 p.m. This dinner is the fourth “Let Kids be Kids,” event, and will raise funds for local underprivileged children to ride the Albany Historic Carousel.
The menu includes chilled pheasant pie with wassail jelly, goose “ham,” pease porridge, mock turtle soup, smoked trout kedgeree, roasted pork loin with sugar plum gravy, roasted potatoes, plum pudding with hard sauce, real English Stilton, fruits and nuts, and oat biscuits.
The cost is $50 per person, $75 with wine pairing; gratuity not included. Please, don’t be a Scrooge, raise your glasses for kids who need passes! Telephone Sybaris for the all important reservation: 541-928-8157.
Now that the leaves have turned crimson and auburn, we Valley-folk know that this is a perfect time to wander our local trails for wildlife viewing or settle into a cozy indoor seat at your favorite coffee spot and watch the world go by.
Invite your friends and family to visit and take advantage of great rates at our local hotels. If you’d like to spend a day or two in historic Albany this month, we have a few suggestions—like 20!
November (various dates and times) Live Music at Calapooia Brewing Company Enjoy artisanal brews and ciders at one of Albany’s first micro-breweries. From blues, folk, rock and jazz, November’s line-up of musical talent is sure to please. Order a gourmet burger and a brew during the show. Visit Calapooia’s Facebook page for more information on the artists, and show dates and times: https://www.facebook.com/calapooiabrewing/
November 2nd First Friday at Gallery Calapooia, Urban Ag, and other participating businesses Get your art on and do a little early holiday shopping in downtown Albany. Gallery Calapooia will be filled with wonderful gift ideas, plus you can meet the artists and enjoy complimentary wine and appetizers from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 pm. Music will be performed by String Theory. Telephone the gallery at 541-971-5701 for more information or visit their website: GalleryCalapooia. At Urban Ag, shop their extended First Friday hours until 8:00 p.m. This unique shop has plenty of tools and other gear waiting to be plucked for your picky gardening friends. Gift cards are available as well. Visit Urban Ag at 124 SW Ellsworth. As you make your way through downtown, be sure to visit other participating shops, bistros and restaurants, including the Albany Regional Museum (ARM). ARM’s November First Friday features local author Jim Lindsay signings book “Swerve.”
Nov 2nd – 4th Blackberry Junction is a vintage boutiquey indoor show that features everything from collectibles to shabby and rustic finds, antiques, seasonal/holiday adornments and much more. It is one of the valley’s largest and original shows of its kind and is sure to inspire you. The show is located at the Linn County Fair & Expo Center, 3700 Knox Butte Rd, Albany. Visit the event page for hours and more information.
November 2nd – 4th The Friends of the Albany Public Library is hosting a Fall Book Sale featuring all kinds of gently-used books, CDs, and DVDs, priced from 50 cents to $3.00. There will also be specially-priced books and jigsaw puzzles. Located in the Meeting Room at the Main Albany Public Library, 2450 14th Ave. SE. See the Facebook event page for hours and contact: https://www.facebook.com/events/2101621123485688/
November 8th The Taste Sample menu bites from the Mid-Willamette Valley’s best restaurants, wineries, and breweries. This annual event is a fundraiser benefiting Albany’s YMCA’s Scholarship Fund. There’s also a silent auction with great items from many local businesses. VIP Tickets are $75 and regular tickets are $50 per person, ages 21 and over. Visit the YMCA Albany on Facebook for ticket information.
November 8th – 10th Time for the annual Albany Downtown Unwrapped and Holiday Open House event. Be sure to come see the surprises downtown at your favorite shops and restaurants. Get a jump on your gift shopping and have dinner at one of our fabulous restaurants. Several participating bistros will be offering “Unwrapped” cocktails and desserts. Christmas Storybook Land’s Mrs Claus will be strolling the sidewalks with candy cane treats. You’ll have an opportunity to vote for your favorite decorated window, ballots will be available at participating merchants. Visit the Albany Downtown Association for more information www.albanydowntown.com
November 10th Albany Veterans Day Memorial Service From 8:30 a.m. to 9:15 a.m. at Timber-Linn Park at the Linn County Veterans Memorial. This service honors our fallen along with recognition for our current troops. Guest speakers, laying of the Gold Star and POW/MIA wreaths, “Oregon’s Own” 234th Band will play a medley of service songs, a 21-round salute and Echo Taps will be preformed. There is no charge for this event and it is open to all. For more information visit the event Facebook page.
November 10th Albany Veterans Day Parade Be prepared to feel proud of your nation as marching bands, troops, first responders, retired veterans, and a whole host of honorary floats and historical reenactments take place in the largest Veterans Day Parade west of the Mississippi River. This parade is one of the most well-attended Veterans Day events in Oregon. So come on downtown from 11:00 A.M. to 2:00 p.m. and honor our vets. For more information telephone 541-981-2390.
November 10th US Capitol Christmas Tree Visits Albany While you are here for the Veterans Day Parade, be sure to stop by the Linn County Courthouse (and the Albany Visitors Association booth) for a chance to win free rides on the Albany Carousel. The giant Oregon-grown “People’s Christmas Tree” is on its way to Washington DC, and you don’t want to miss a chance to wish it good luck! The tree will be on display in its trailer from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 pm. before setting off on its journey.
November 13th – 15th The Willamette Valley Ag Expo takes place at the Linn County Fair & Expo Center from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Thinking about getting into farming or maybe need some tips and tools for your established operation? Attendees will have the opportunity to work with exhibitors and vendors directly, getting questions answered and forging new relationships. In addition to the wonderful exhibitors and classes, you’ll enjoy other attractions such as “Dine Around Oregon,” an antique farm equipment display, and an educational area from Oregon Women for Agriculture. Admission is $4 per person and parking is free. For information visit the event website WVAE
November 14th Join the Albany Regional Museum for another fun and informative History Bites at noon on Wednesday the 14th. November’s free presentation will focus on Adair Air Force Station (AFS) and its role in the Cold War defense of the US. Presenter Dennis Emerson, board member of Adair Living History, Inc., is a retired USAF officer who once lived at ASF. Gary Richards another board member from Adair Living History, Inc. (known locally as “The Circuit Rider”) will showcase new projects for those interested in Camp Adair. This event is free but donations are appreciated. Refreshments will be provided. ARM is located at 136 SE Lyon St in Albany. For more information, contact the Albany Regional Museum.
November 17th Calling all antique car lovers! You don’t want to miss the Albany Indoor Automotive Swap Meet at the Linn County Fair & Expo Center from 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. The meet features antique cars, car parts, reproduction vendors, and memorabilia hosted by the Enduring A’s Chapter, MAFCA. General admission is $5 for 16 and older. For more information, telephone 541-928-1218 or email email@example.com
November 17th Don’t forget that the Albany Farmers’ Market is wrapping up their season with the last market of 2018 on Saturday the 17th from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Get those fresh pumpkins and other goodies, including lots of locally made gifts and treats! Enjoy hot coffee by Margin and bakery items from The Warehouse and Natural Sprinkles as you fill your shopping bag with freshly harvested produce and holiday greenery.
Thanksgiving Day, November 22nd If you want to enjoy your turkey day with the family and feel zero guilt about that second piece of pie, how about taking part in the Annual Gobbler’s Revenge. Starting at 7:30 a.m. and “running” until noon, you can choose the Half Marathon, 10K Scenic Challenge Run, 5K To-Hill-and-Back Run, and the 2.5 mile Walk North Albany Middle School. For more information telephone 541-497-1512 or visit the event website to register: www.omroadrace.org/gobbler-s-revenge.html
November 23rd – 25th Enjoy a German harvest celebration at Albany’s Springhill Cellars Winery. The Federweisser Festival at Springhill was first launched in 1990. The three day fest will feature still-fermenting Riesling (the Federweisser) with specially made bratwürst and Zwiebelkuchen, a sweet onion tart. The winery is located at 2920 NW Scenic Drive in North Albany. For information on the festival and the winery, visit Springhill Cellars Winery
November 24th Shop Small Saturday in Downtown Albany 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Downtown Albany is proud of the many local, independent retailers who offer unique products you’ll never find at a big box store. Many items are hand crafted and made in the Northwest. Shop small and local and don’t forget the gift shop at the Carousel! Visit the Albany Downtown Association website for more details.
November 24th – Ballet and Music at the Albany Historic Carousel Enjoy performances by the Willamette Apprentice Ballet and the Corvallis Community Band. For more information as it becomes available, visit the Carousel’s Facebook page AlbanyHistoricCarousel
November 28th and 29th The Girls and Boys Club of Albany invite you to the annual Celebration of Trees at 1215 Hill St SE. “Community Night” is 11/28, from 2p.m. – 8 p.m. and is free to the public. Auction Night on 11/29 does require paid admission and reservations 541-926-6666, so please contact the club for more information. Enjoy 30 decorated trees and youth choirs. Visit the club on Facebook at Boys & Girls Club of Albany
November 30th Town & Country Christmas Bazaar This great show features handmade items such as ceramic, jewelry, photo, fiber, metalwork, sculptures, glass, mixed media, wood, graphics, paintings and much more. For information visit Linn Co Fair & Expo
November 30th (through December 14th) Albany’s best family Christmas show opens on November 30th, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the Linn County Fair & Exposition Center on Knox Butte Rd. Christmas Storybook Land is an enormous indoor Christmas forest wonderland with over 110 scenes of characters from nursery rhymes, children’s stories, and family movies, two elaborate model train displays, a Victorian village, plus the North Pole with Santa and Mrs. Claus. Visit the event website for complete hours and more information at www.ChristmasStorybookLand.org
Bonus! Download the Explore Albany App to your smart phone or tablet and design your own Albany adventure. Available for both Android and Apple. Interactive historic district maps tell the story of our architectural styles and Albany history. Take a day trip through covered bridge territory or plan a hike through one of our many parks. Make a stop at the Albany Historic Carousel & Museum and share a selfie on Instagram or Facebook with us. simply go to Apple’s App Store or Google Play and search for Albany Explorer ,then download the free app.
The very first thing that delights the senses when you open the door to “The Warehouse – Commissary & Catering” is the heavenly aroma of baking bread. That’s a phenomenal start, because when one of the smiling bakers greets you, it just gets better and better.
As you pass down the hallway from an enormous bread oven, you’ll notice colorful freshly harvested veggies and seasonal fruit displayed much like a mini roadside farm-stand. Behind the counter, rustic crates and galvanized containers overflow with a cornucopia of bread and a fragrant assortment of croissants and rolls.
The Warehouse is the brainchild of Chef Cody Utzman (of Frankie’s Restaurant in North Albany, and two-time winner of the cooking show Chopped). It opened with a soft launch in early September. However, the official grand opening will take place on Saturday October 27th in conjunction with Albany’s Downtown trick or treat event. (See event details below in the “Grand Opening” section.)
Warehouse bakers Lupe Alvarez, Ian Anderson, and Lydia Short, produce several hundred loaves of bread per week in addition to approximately 200 hand-layered butter croissants, Danish, scones, muffins and other assorted pastries. They craft their daily bread selections with locally sourced grains and flours from Camas Country Mill, and varieties include whole grain honey oat, seeded whole grain, white Italian, and focaccia topped with seasonal vegetables and feta cheese. There’s often a wild-card weekly special where the baking team exhibit their creative skills with honey-lavender wheat loaves or savory Kalamata olive and rosemary fougasse.
What may well be their showstopper is The Warehouse’s slow-fermented sourdough bread—shaped into chubby ovals and rounds with thick golden split crusts or elegant baguettes. This special sourdough is one that many gluten-intolerant individuals can enjoy without upset. The Warehouse sourdough is produced on Wednesdays and Saturdays and rivals any found along San Francisco’s Fisherman’s Wharf. The kitchen’s slow-fermentation process is part of the team’s overall mission to produce artisanal breads that are healthy and reflect their holistic view of community.
In addition to the incredible array of baked goods prepared for both wholesale and retail, The Warehouse is open Monday through Friday, from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. for walk-in lunch-time traffic. Since there are no chairs, this is a “grab and go” retail outlet to pick up tasty pre-prepared sandwiches and chef’s salads by Chef Nichole Wooley, Bodhi fresh-squeezed juices, and Authentic Meals’ snacks and meals for lunch or dinner. There’s also an assortment of just-picked salad greens, seasonal veggies, sprouts, and other produce from local Camron Ridge Farmstead.
The concept of The Warehouse is that in addition to its core bakery and catering business, it will act as a community resource. The team offers commercial kitchen rental to entrepreneurs and food producers who may not have their own licensed facilities.
Utzman is dedicated to following a “farm to table” model in every business endeavor he is involved in. The Warehouse’s Managing Coordinator Emily Vasey, fulfilled a similar dream when she started working for Utzman at Frankie’s several years ago. Vasey has over 20 years experience in the restaurant industry but was yearning for work that fostered a local and sustainable community concept.
Moving from Frankie’s to The Warehouse has been a natural integration of values for everyone involved, and Vasey remains centered in the kitchen coordinating the many revolving parts that support the commissary’s catering and wholesale needs.
“It’s really exciting that we can give smaller newer food-based businesses like Authentic Meals a home base and can help one another grow,” Vasey said. She noted that Rainshine Family Farm, a local hazelnut grower, will roast nuts in the commissary’s large commercial oven and package them for resale—thus adding value to their raw agricultural product. “We hope to partner with other businesses that need commercial kitchen space,” she added.
The Warehouse currently supplies hand-made pastries, desserts and bread products to several other Albany and Corvallis restaurants, including Universal Coffee Company, First Burger, Frankies, and Castor. They also sell baked goods at both the Albany and Corvallis Farmers’ Markets. Vasey said the Warehouse’s retail space at 315 Lyon St is the perfect spot for local office workers and residents in the surrounding neighborhood to pick up lunch, fresh produce or other items on weekdays.
The Warehouse will hold their official Grand Opening Party on Saturday, October 27th, in conjunction with the Albany Downtown Trick or Treat event, from 11:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. All ghouls and boos are invited to the new space for free sweet snacks, spiced apple cider, and family-friendly games.
You can join in on the fun by walking towards the Albany Visitors Association (at 110 3rd St SE), turn south on Lyon, then amble a half block to the alley on the left (between AVA and Willamette Community Bank). The Warehouse will post a sandwich board on Lyon St to point towards their doorway in the alley. Free parking is available along Lyon, 3rd and 4th streets.
Address: 315 Lyon St, Albany OR. Telephone: 541-704-0067 Hours: Monday through Friday, 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Website: www.thewarehouse-cc.com
*This blog post was authored by Maddie MacGregor at Albany Visitors Association
October 5th – First Friday at Gallery Calapooia From 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. Gallery Calapooia will hold an artists’ reception for Susan Bourdet (watercolors) and Pat Spark (hand-dyed felt imagery). Come enjoy the evening with refreshments and old and new friends in Downtown Albany. The gallery is located at 222 W 1st.
October 6th – Albany Fire Dept. Treasure Hunt Save the date for a day of family fun at the Albany Fire Department Treasure Hunt. The fun begins on Saturday at 9:00 a.m. and runs until 1:00 p.m. Get in on engine rides, station tours, firefighter challenges, snacks and treats. Visit the AFD Facebook page for more info at Albany Fire Department.
October 6th and 7th – RaSani Body, Mind, and Spirit Fair Tranquil sounds, fragrances and moments are coming via practitioners of the healing and meditative arts at the Linn County Fair & Expo Center, from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. For more info, visit the RaSani Fair Fall Expo Facebook page.
October 10th – History Bites at the Albany Regional Museum Come take a break on Wednesday the 10th at noon at the free monthly History Bites presentation. This month author Jeff Davis, military historian and paranormal researcher will discuss “Haunted Oregon.” Jeff will have copies of his books Ghosts, Critters, and Sacred Places of Washington and Oregon, and A Haunted Tour Guide to the Pacific Northwest available for purchase. Although History Bites is free, donations are greatly appreciated. Refreshments will be served. The museum located at 136 SE Lyon St. If you would like more information on Jeff Davis, visit http://www.ghostsandcritters.com/aboutjeffdavis.html
October 11th, 12th, 13th, 14th, and 18th, 19th, 20th – “Once Upon A Mattress” Check out the new fall community theater production at the Albany Civic Theater This classic musical is an adaptation of the Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale “The Princess and the Pea.” Set in a fictional medieval kingdom ruled by the devious Queen Aggravain, a mute king Sexitmus suffers from a curse. Head over to ACT’s website for the full performance schedule and ticket information at http://www.albanycivic.org
October 12th – All Ages Pumpkin Decorating From noon until 5:00 p.m. at the Albany Art Studio. Cider, decorations, and gourds—OH MY! The studio provides the decorations and pumpkins. If you have a special gourd, feel free to bring it along, but don’t worry if you don’t have one, pumpkins will be available for purchase. This event is free (except for pumpkin purchases). Register online at: https://www.albanyartstudio.com/events/pumpkin-decorating
October 13th – Annual Oregon Mennonite Festival Come see the absolutely drop-dead gorgeous quilt display at this annual festival that benefits the World Relief Fund. Starting at 7:30 a.m., feast on a delicious egg casserole or baked goods. After you shop at the vendor fair featuring books, fair trade gifts, quilt supplies and more, enjoy a taco salad, pulled pork sandwich, sausage dogs and soups for lunch. The fair is held this year at the Linn County Fair & Expo Center on Knox Butte Rd. For more information, visit the festival website .
October 13th and 27th – Cider Pressing at Thompson’s Mills Ready for sweet apple cider? Come squeeze your own on a historic press for a small donation. Thompson’s Mills State Heritage Site brings back their popular fall event from last year. The two Saturday hours run from noon until the apples run out, so come early. Take a short drive from Albany to Shedd, 32655 Boston Mill Dr. For more information, telephone 541-491-3611.
October 18th, 19th, 20th – Oktoberfest at Three Sheets Brewery The brewery and pub will be outfitted in festival decor and boast a new food menu special for this event. There will be raffle drawings with prizes, and for every beer you buy, you’l be entered into the drawing. If you wear lederhosen or dirndl to the festival, you’ll receive an extra raffle ticket and $1 off your first beer. Hours: Thursday, 4:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.; Friday, 4:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.; Saturday, 1:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. Three Sheets is located at 136 SW 1st Ave in Downtown Albany. For more information telephone 541-791-7311.
October 19th, 20th, 21st, 26th, 27th, 28th, 30th, 31st – Morningstar Grange Haunted House The grange is hosting a fun and spooky fundraiser for the Jefferson Fire Department Christmas Basket Program and the Albany Gleaners. Admission is $5 per person or five cans of non-perishable food. The Haunted House hours are: Oct 19th and 20th: 7:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.; Oct 21st: 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.; Oct 26th and 27th: 7:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.; Oct 28th and 30th: 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.; October 31st: 7:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. Visit the event Facebook page for more info: https://www.facebook.com/hauntedhouseatmorningstargrange/
SOLD OUT!!! Trolley of Terror Albany’s most popular Halloween activity is fast approaching sold out status! The dates noted are the only nights with time slots still available for the family to enjoy a fun-filled trip on the decorated trolley through historic downtown. Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for children age 12 and under. Pre-paying is the only way to make sure you are added to the tours. Please call our office to reserve your spot now or stop in to see us at 110 3rd Ave SE; we are open Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
SOLD OUT!!! October 20th and 29th – VIP Ghost Hunt The tickets to this VIP event benefit the non-profit Monteith House Museum. Only 10 brave ghost-busters will be admitted (to the reportedly haunted house) for the nearly three-hour hunt each Saturday, from 10:30 p.m. until 1:00 a.m.—featuring professional paranormal researchers with recording equipment. Tickets to the exclusive hunt are $50 each. Come join this spooky adult only event—tickets are sold entirely online with our new secure ticketing plug-in.
October 20th – Boo Boogie Bash and Rodeo Get ready to party! Bareback riding, saddle bronc riding, bull riding, barrel racing, Mexican dancing horses, and mutton busting will all take place at this Halloween-themed rodeo event. Join the party after at Larry’s Lounge. Advance tickets: $13.00/$15.00 at the door. Kids 5 and under FREE. All held at the Linn County Fair & Expo Center on Knox Butte Rd. For more information: http://www.wildwesteventsinc.com
October 21st – Child Halloween Makeup Workshop From 10:00 a.m. until 12:00 p.m. bring your friends for a “spooktacular” event at the Albany Art Studio. Materials will be provided. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Cost is $10, register online at: https://www.albanyartstudio.com/events/child-halloween-makeup-workshop An Adult Halloween Makeup Workshop will take place on the same day at the studio from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. and costs $20. Reserve your spot at https://www.albanyartstudio.com/events/adult-makeup-workshop
October 26th and 27th – The Annual Mid-Valley Brewfest is back again, and bigger and better than ever! The new venue at Two Rivers Market in Downtown Albany will feature live bands, food trucks, plus all the locally made micro-brews, ales, hard ciders, wine, mead, and spirits you can imagine. Admission is $20, adults only. The tickets entitle you to 5 drinks of your choice and a great 2018 Brewfest mug. Ticket sales day of event only (no pre-sales). For more info visit the event website at https://midvalleybrewfest.com
PLEASE NOTE EVENT CHANGES – DATES, TIMES, AND LOCATION – October 26th – 28th, and 31st – Coffin Park Cemetery Haunted Attraction This event will run from 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. the 26th and 27th; the 28th from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.; and on the 31st, 4:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. It’s guaranteed to thrill the entire family. Costumed actors, refreshments, and a gently spooky atmosphere will “haunt” the space. A suggested donation is a can of food that will be given to FISH of Albany. The attraction is located at 2942 Mount Vernon St SE in Albany.
October 27th – Annual Albany Downtown Trick or Treat Come visit your favorite downtown businesses in disguise! Bring the family and the little “ghouls and boos” for treats and a few surprises. The free event runs from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. and is organized by the Albany Downtown Association. For more information telephone 541-928-2469.
October 27th and 28th – The Pacific Northwest Reptile and Exotic Animal Show is the largest such shown the PNW. Visit with creature vendors and the critters themselves at the Linn County Fair & Expo Center. Admission is $10 adults, $5 kids (6 to 10), and free for tiny tots 5 and under. Saturday hours: 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Sunday 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. For more information and a full list of participating vendors visit the event Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/PACNWRS/
October 31st – The Haunted Carousel Get ready to be spooked at the Albany Historic Carousel & Museum on Halloween Eve from 4:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Gather your trick or treats through the ‘Wizard of Oz’ maze. Admission is $5.00 and includes 2 ride tokens. Appropriate for all ages. The carousel is located at 503 1st Ave SW in Downtown Albany. Telephone 541-497-2934 for more information.
October 31st – Trick or Treat at the Heritage Mall Looking for another safe place to take the littles for trick or treat? Head on over to the Heritage Shopping Mall at 1895 14th Ave SW from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Visit the mall website for more information: https://www.heritagemall.com
Commemorative 2018 Veterans Day buttons are on sale for $5 and are selling fast, according to Al Severson of the Veterans Commemoration Association in Albany. The theme for this year’s Veterans Day parade in Albany is “A Century of Valor,” celebrating the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I.
“We have 2,000 of them and proceeds will help cover costs of the parade,” Severson said. “I’ve probably sold 40 of them just because people have seen me wearing them.”
The buttons feature artwork of a soldier, flag and poppies inspired by the poem “In Flanders Fields.” They read: A Century of Valor, 2018, Albany Veterans Day Parade.” The buttons can be purchased at the Frame House, 434 West First Ave., Albany.
For $20, people can become members of the Veterans Commemoration Association and will receive four buttons, Severson said.
A few of the 2017 buttons are still available for purchase, Severson said. “Last year was the first year for the buttons and we hope to make it an annual thing,” Severson said. “We’d like people to collect them like the old Timber Carnival buttons.”
Severson said he is impressed with the 12 applications that have been received for the Veteran of the Year. “It is the most we’ve had in many years,” Severson said. “They came from Albany, Lebanon, Junction City and more and the veterans had very impressive military records.”
Severson said a committee is reviewing the applications and should be completed by the end of the month. “We have one nominee who is 100 years old,” Severson said. “We have several in their 90s and some in their 80s. They represent World War II, Korea and Vietnam.”
Severson said applications are also coming in for parade entries. The 67th annual Veterans Day Parade will start at 11 a.m. on Nov. 10 and will celebrate the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I at the “11th hour, on the 11th day, of the 11th month of 1918.”
Parade categories include marching bands, color guards or honor guards, marching units, walking entries, floats, equestrian units, and vehicles.
Entry forms can be picked up at the Frame House or by 541-981-2390 or emailing: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The annual Veteran of the Year Banquet will be held Nov. 9. Tickets are $27.50 each or $30 after Nov. 1.
*Original article by Alex Paul, reporter for the Democrat Herald, published Sep 18, 2018
Albany is joining in on First Friday activities. On September 7th, make it an afternoon and evening out in historic downtown. Our restaurants and brew pubs will be hopping, serving a variety of specialties from cheese platters to Hungarian food—plus local spirits, wines, and beer. Walk along the Willamette River and meander back to the Commercial District for a bit of art-gazing and shopping. Many downtown businesses will participate in First Friday extended shopping hours. So don’t be a stranger, make a great start to your September.
September 7th Come paint rocks with local artists and the Linn County Rocks Facebook group. Start your First Friday out in the afternoon at the Albany Historic Carousel Rock Painting Party. This is a free, all-ages event, taking place from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. Take a ride or two on the carousel and enjoy the day. Make it a date and plan on dinner at one of our great downtown eateries.
September 7th Start your First Friday night out by experiencing the exhibits and history of our city at the Albany Regional Museum. Extended hours on First Fridays run from 4:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Museum admission is free to all. The museum is located at 136 SE Lyon St.
September 7th Why not check the vintage clothing and antique shops or the Albany Antique Mall for a funky felt fedora or a beaded flapper dress, and then head over to the First Friday “Speak Easy Party” at the Natty Dresser from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. It’s a prohibition era inspired party with live music by Lonna Capaci and cocktail samples by Vivacity Spirits (all legal for those 21 and over of course). Use the password “moonshine” for a special treat (while supplies last). The shop will show new fall fashions as well. Natty Dresser is located at 425 W 1st Ave.
September 7th Celebrate Gallery Calapooia’s 5th Anniversary (an artist’s collective and gallery) from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on First Friday. Enjoy wine, munchies, live music, and the work of gallery members. The cooperative will be filled to the rafters with fiber art, jewelry, sculpture, paintings, prints, photography and ceramics. This is a free event. Gallery Calapooia is located at 222 W 1st Ave in downtown Albany.
September 7th Thinking about your fall garden or some great presents for earthy friends on holidays? How about stopping in at Albany’s local garden and urban agriculture store for their first First Friday event. The shop will be open for extended hours from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Urban Ag Supply is located across the street from Little Wuestens (where you can nab great desserts, coffee and German food) and the Albany Antique Mall, at 124 SW Ellsworth St.
Following close on the heels of First Friday, there’s plenty to keep you busy. From antique shows and remodeling expos to beer races and live theatrical performances, we’ve got a little bit of everything to fill up your calendar.
September 8th Come on downtown to a free and fun annual event, Antiques in the Streets and Classic Car Show. The show starts on Saturday at 8:00 a.m. for all early-bird treasure hunters and winds down at 3:00 p.m. There will be food carts, live music, and booth after booth of cool vintage finds. Antique and classic cars will be on display for automative buffs.
September 8th As we move firmly into harvest season, the Albany Farmers’ Market is going to be filled with prime ingredients for salsa, soups, and other baking or canning projects. Bins of heirloom tomatoes, garlic, onions, peppers, squash, and fresh greens are brought in from nearby farms. Honey, cheese, baked goods, jams, and coffee from local producers wait to tempt you. So stop by the market between 9:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. on the corner of Ellsworth and Fourth Ave.
September 8th Love craft brews? Wanna get some exercise too? Well save the date for the Albany Beer Run, coming up on Saturday September 8th, from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. The 0.3K (no excuses couch taters) run starts at Calapooia Brewing Company and ends at Deluxe Brewing. $25 preregistration, $30 day of event, telephone 541-497-1512 for more information.
September 14th through 16th Plan on heading out to the Linn County Fair & Expo Center at 3700 Knox Butte Rd E, for Blackberry Junction, a shabby chic and up-cycled lover’s dream-show. The show starts with a buyer’s special pre-sale on Thursday, Sept 13th at 4:00 p.m., with regular starting hours over Friday and the weekend. Check all hours and other information on the show’s Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/Blackberry-Junction-131375245675/
September 22nd The annual Craft Brew Smackdown takes place on Saturday, Sep 22nd from 2:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. in downtown Albany. This is your opportunity to sample beverages from 24 breweries, cider houses and distilleries, who will offer tastings at downtown businesses. Pre-sale tickets to the event are online. (*Tickets can be purchased on the day of the event, no pre-sales, at the Albany Visitors Association, 110 3rd SE.) For $20 you get 10 tasting tickets, a pint glass, a map of the locations and a beer passport for your chance to win a prize. Additional tickets are available at the tasting locations, five tickets for $5. This fundraiser is organized and sponsored by the Greater Albany Rotary Club and the Albany Downtown Association. For more information, contact Jessica Pankratz at 541-740-1466.
September 28th and 29th: Check out the new fall production at the Albany Civic Theater, Once Upon a Mattress. This is a musical comedy written as an adaptation of the Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale “The Princess and the Pea.” The performance is set in a fictional medieval kingdom ruled by the devious Queen Aggravain and a mute king Sexitmus who suffers from a curse. The musical runs through October 20th, so head over to ACT’s website for the full performance schedule and ticket information http://www.albanycivic.org/shows/once-upon-a-mattress/
September 28th through 30th Albany’s premier fall remodeling and fix-it event bursts at the seams with home improvement ideas and tips from local experts. If you are considering hiring a pro or even doing the work yourself, the Albany Home Show is a must visit for you and your family. The event is held at the Linn County Fair & Expo Center on Knox Butte Rd. Get thousands of home decorating and improvement ideas at the largest ‘hub’ of building and remodeling resources in the area. For more information, email email@example.com
Make sure to check our full events calendar on the Albany Visitors Association website at albanyvisitors.com. There are many more family oriented activities to enjoy during September. Stop by and see us for a free visitors guide and a copy of “Seems Like Old Times,” a publication that highlights self-guided tours though our three national historic districts. Or, if you like to read info on the fly, check out the free “Albany Explorer App” on Google Play or the Apple App Store. You’ll find restaurants, hotels, interactive maps, digital postcards and ways you can qualify to win special “explorer” swag.
AVA sends out gratitude to Sybaris Restaurant and Springhill Cellars Winery for their gorgeous Farm to Table dinner along Albany’s historic 9th Street Canal. This beautiful evening was a benefit for the Albany Regional Museum, who provides educational and historical presentations, collections, and exhibits for free to the public. We hope you enjoy the slideshow and stay tuned to AVA for the 2019 farm-to-table dinners! (*Images provided by Knoher Photos and Katie Knower.)