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So long Pow Wow, hello Scappoose Summerfest

Scappoose Boosters rename yearly community festival


Scappoose Boosters President Nick Teeter said Tuesday, Jan. 21, the club has renamed its yearly Pow Wow festival.

“It’s going to be called the Scappoose Summerfest,” he said.

The name change was decided at a Jan. 21 Scappoose Boosters Summerfest Board (formerly Scappoose Pow Wow Board) meeting, Teeter said.

“Everybody was pretty much in agreement,” he said. “Some present wanted to keep it the Pow Wow, but nobody was overwhelmingly against it. It needs to be done.”

Teeter said in an earlier interview with the Spotlight the push for the name change came down from the Scappoose City Council as well as from members of the community who felt the potential rebranding of the Scappoose High School Indians — due to an Oregon Board of Education decision to ban all Native American mascots in the state’s schools by 2017 — should also apply to the Boosters’ event.

The festival will also be held in early June rather than July and will run for only Friday and Saturday, dropping Sunday from the event schedule.

Teeter said the Boosters are working to bill Summerfest as a family event, moving away from the former Pow Wow’s strong focus on the beer garden. The Boosters are hoping to hold another carnival at Summerfest, but are so far having a hard time coordinating the effort.

“We are having an extremely difficult time trying to have a carnival,” he said. “The first year, it was by a stroke of luck. Now, they’re wanting to sign five- or 10-year contracts. We don’t want to commit to anything like that. It’s kind of frustrating, but we’re not giving up hope yet. If we don’t land one, we’ll figure out something to do to keep it community-minded and involve kids.”

Another potential coordinating challenge to Summerfest is the likelihood that the JP West Road bridge in Scappoose — which is the main entry point to the event’s location in Veterans Park — will be under construction throughout the summer. The Columbia County Road Department is scheduled to replace the bridge that spans South Scappoose Creek this summer and has required the city of Scappoose to relocate water and sewer lines that run underneath it.

“We’re still developing a strategy,” Teeter said of the Boosters’ plans for traffic at the event. “[The bridge] is slated to be replaced in June. Really, the major impact is going to be the car show on Saturday.”

Teeter said the tentative plan is to have vehicles detour off Highway 30 for an alternate access to Veterans Park.

“It should just be an inconvenience,” Teeter said, “I’m kind of hoping they’ll be starting on that project the weekend after Summerfest.”