It took almost nine months of chilled autumn days, rugged winter nights and manic spring weather, but we’re here. There’s no need anymore to ask, “Are we there yet?”
We’ve made it.
Officially, the summer season doesn’t begin until June 21, but Eugene Weekly is declaring it the season here and now in its annual Summer Guide issue, complete with all listings we could gather and snapshot stories of events that might interest you, the reader. Did we miss an event? Please update our online calendar at EugeneWeekly.com for future What’s Happening listings.
There is much to do in Lane County and beyond this summer, and there are events that are either brand new or that have been around just since the end of pandemic-driven restrictions on social distancing, and they deserve shout outs.
Locally, the Farmers Market Pavilion is not just the home of the Lane County Farmers Market on Saturdays and Tuesdays. Starting June 15 and continuing every third Thursday through Sept. 21, there is the Night Market, good for all of us who are too busy to shop during the day.
The Farmers Market Pavilion also hosts the Eugene Native American Arts & Crafts Market every first Sunday of the month, starting June 4 and ending Oct. 1, as well as a pair of First Friday ArtWalks featuring Black Artists (July 7 and Aug. 4).
At Alton Baker Park this summer, the Eugene Juneteenth Celebration — Black Hair Matters is June 18, and on August 19 is the 3rd Annual Black Cultural Festival.
In the mood for sports? The Lane United Women’s soccer team kicked off its inaugural season this spring and has three more matches at Civic Park in June. And the Springfield Drifters, a wood-bat baseball team of college players, start their second season June 2 and play a 30-game home schedule at the Hamlin Middle School Sports Complex. Bodybuilding also has its day in Eugene with the fourth running of the Cecil E. Phillips Classic, a performance-enhancing-drug-free competition July 22 at Eugene Christian School.
Beyond Lane County’s borders, the Deschutes County Fairgrounds in Redmond is the new hot spot for music lovers, with two festivals making their debuts.
The first is the FairWell Festival, July 21 through 23, highlighted by the Turnpike Troubadours and Zach Bryan as well as Willie Nelson and Family. Among the other performers at the three-day festival are Gary Clark Jr, Morgan Wade, Sheryl Crow and Trampled by Turtles as well as Nathaniel Rateliff and the Night Sweats.
That’s followed by the Cascade Equinox Festival, Sept. 22 through 24. This first-ever festival features Pretty Lights, Big Wild, Phantogram, Emancipator, Fruition and the return migration to Oregon of Goose, the nationally acclaimed jam band that played a sold-out show April 25 at McDonald Theatre.
Sadly, the Maude Kerns Art Center will not have its Art and the Vineyard Festival this year, and Faerieworlds announced early in May that it has closed permanently, a victim of the pandemic and ongoing financial troubles.
Still, there’s much fun to be had in Lane County this summer, and everyone seems eager to get going.
We have made it to summer 2023.