BROOKINGS CELEBRATES 50TH ANNIVERSARY FRIDAY

July 10, 2001 11:00 pm

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All the last minute arrangements are coming together this week as the city of Brookings prepares to begin celebrating its 50th birthday on Friday evening.

Music and food will bookend the weekend of events, which kicks off Friday evening with a 1950s sock hop and ends Sunday afternoon with a patriotic concert in Azalea Park.

The celebration will focus on the official incorporation of Brookings, which occurred Friday, July 13, 1951. (The election to incorporate Brookings was actually on July 10, 1951, but wasnt officially certified by the state of Oregon until three days later.)

During that special election, residents voted 153-85 for incorporation. On Wednesday, Sept. 12, 1951, the city elected its first council with Robert Dimmick becoming the communitys first mayor.

(For more on the history of Brookings first 50 years, see the special birthday celebration section in todays newspaper.)

To celebrate the citys 50th anniversary, a special committee headed by City Councilor Lorraine Kuhn has been planning the birthday party for several months. The culmination of that planning and the effort of numerous volunteers is a schedule of fun events with something for everyone, according to Kuhn.

Everything is coming together very, very well, she said Tuesday. It should be a fun weekend.

There will be lots to do for everyone with very little cost.

Making the weekend even more special, Brookings Mayor Bob Hagbom, in his official Happy Birthday Brookings proclamation, instructed Mother Nature to cooperate with the calendar of celebratory events.

Now, therefore, he said at Mondays city council meeting, I proclaim the weekend of July 13, 2001, as The First 50th Birthday Celebration Weekend In Brookings and further proclaim that the sun will shine from dawn to dusk daily on all of the community festivities.

Friday evenings sock hop will get under way at 7 p.m. and is scheduled to last until 10 p.m. Moonglow Music of Brookings will provide a variety of 50s tunes to dance to in the parking lot at Rays Food Place on the corner of Fifth Street and U.S. 101.

Other events going on simultaneously at Rays will be the cutting and serving of the citys birthday cake beginning at 8 p.m. Hot dogs and soft drinks will be available throughout the evening for a 50s price of 50 cents for both. There will also be vintage car display sponsored by the Curry County Cruisers, a hula hoop contest, dance and 50s dress-up contests.

Kuhn said there will be lots of prize giveaways.

Saturday is packed with fun-filled events on the Boardwalk at the Port of Brookings Harbor from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m.

Sundays festivities will start early with an old-fashioned military breakfast (Remember SOS?) sponsored by the Marine Corps League at the Brookings VFW from 8-11 a.m.

An old-fashioned family picnic will be held at noon in Azalea Park prior to the weekends finale: a 1 p.m. performance by the 1st Division Marine Corps Band from Camp Pendleton, Calif., at the Azalea Park band shell.

The concert, in conjunction with the American Music Festival Free Summer Concert series, will be the first appearance of the nationally-renowned 37-member band in Brookings.

The Marine band has been in existence since WWII and has performed throughout the Pacific Theater. It now appears in over 400 performances annually, including the Rose Bowl Parade.

The band is best known for its performance of patriotic and marching tunes.

Those planning on attending the picnic and concert are encouraged to bring lawn chairs or blankets for seating at the grassy venue. Kuhn said that prior to the start of the concert on Sunday afternoon, the City of Brookings would like to honor past city dignitaries.

Any individuals who served on the city council or any city commissions during the past 50 years, she said, we want to take the time to recognize prior to the concert.

We also want to honor any past or present students who served as ex-officio council or commission members.

Kuhn asked that anyone who has served the community in these capacities and plans on attending the concert on Sunday afternoon or the sock hop on Friday evening to please contact Sharon Ridens at Brookings City Hall during regular business hours before Friday evening. The phone number at city hall is (541) 469-2163.

All events directly related to citys birthday celebration are geared for family enjoyment and are alcohol-free.

Other special events going on in the community during the weekend include:

The performance of Love Letters at the Performing Arts Center on Saturday at 8 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m.

Special 50-cent movies at the Redwood Theater featuring Grease on Friday at 9:30 p.m. and Saturday at 2 p.m., and Rebel Without a Cause on Saturday at 9:30 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m.

A photo display of Brookings past at the Chetco Community Public Library

The Salmon Run Golf Tournament, sponsored by the Brookings-Harbor Chamber of Commerce on Saturday from 1-6 p.m., featuring a shot-gun start/scramble format, box lunch, and barbecue banquet.

Kuhn said the birthday party committee is still in need of a few volunteers to serve hot dogs and soft drinks on Friday evening and to act as contest judges on Saturday.

Anyone interested in volunteering some time over the weekend can contact Ridens through Friday.