There's even more to look forward to when it comes to festivals and fun times with the family! Several gatherings and events fall just outside the realm of the officially-sponsored community festivals that take place annually across Lewis County — but these are all worth checking out and participating in!
Got a bicycle? Join in Ride the Willapa, a two-day event on the Willapa Hills Trail! Are you a garage sale and swap meet fanatic? Look no further than the Packwood Flea Market. And if you're a bluegrass fan, two music festivals in south Lewis County — Winlock Pickers Fest and the Mount St. Helens Bluegrass Festival — are must-attend events.
Take a look at these other major events going on throughout the year here in Lewis County, and come discover more of why we love celebrating rural life!
This cycling event showcases the beautiful Willapa Hills Trail spanning from Chehalis to Pe Ell, bringing families and friends together from pretty much everywhere to enjoy Washington state's newest rail-trail and celebrate rural life. Ride 22 miles Saturday from Chehalis to Pe Ell at your own pace, and stop to explore farms, see the scenery and much more. Then ride the trail back on Sunday after camping overnight! A Harvest Festival in Pe Ell rounds out the offerings. To register, go to the Ride the Willapa website.
An event that bills itself "The World's Least Important Car Show" has been a major Twin Cities event for years. More than 700 cars pack out the Southwest Washington Fairgrounds for this event that brings people from all over! Car enthusiasts from up and down the West Coast descend on the Southwest Washington Fairgrounds to see hot rods, custom builds and more. Also, stick around in Centralia for the Tower Avenue cruise! Find out more info on the Billetproof website.
The Centralia Downtown Association presents Antique Fest, a celebration of one of the biggest reasons people come to downtown Centralia to shop! Walk the streets July 21-23 and enjoy sidewalk sales that include antiques, vintage finds, and more. Check out their Facebook page for more info as the date approaches!
This event brings people to line the streets of Packwood with cars of all makes and models. Everyone's welcome at the 25th Annual Packwood Summer Rod Run! Start the event off Friday with a Meet & Greet at Cowlitz River Lodge, then enjoy the main event at 9 a.m. Saturday; stick around for the Poker Run on Sunday from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.! Check out their website for more details.
Winolequa Park once again hosts the Washington Acoustic Music Association and its annual Winlock Pickers' Fest this Aug. 4-7. Professional and amateur musicians alike join in to create some melodic music and share their love for bluegrass. Instructional workshops, open mic sessions and kids' activities are all offered — and you might even want to bring your own instrument and take part in a jam session! Visit their website as the date comes closer for more details.
Come join the 33rd annual Mount St. Helens Bluegrass Festival in the community of Toledo this August. This festival, one of the largest music festivals in Lewis County, attracts hundreds of attendees for a weekend of "mountain music" and much more including jam sessions, workshops and more. A full weekend pass is $35; tickets for Friday night are $20 and all-day Saturday tickets are $25. On-site camping and RV parking is available. Visit their website for more details!
Garlic beer. Garlic smoked brisket. Garlic gorgonzola fries. Garlic butter. Everything garlic is honored at this festival that has grown exponentially over the years! Experience live music, learn how to cook several garlic recipes from local chefs, and buy some great food from vendors both near and far. Visit the Garlic Fest website for the delicious details!
Join hundreds of folks at the Herren Farm just north of Toledo for this annual event that celebrates the machinery of yesteryear. From Aug. 26-27, the Cowlitz Prairie Grange Threshing Bee will display the power of old tractors and more, as threshing grain will take place every hour on the hour, and a tractor pull will include 150 tractors! More than 100 antique and craft vendors will be on site. Call the Cowlitz Prairie Grange at (360) 864-2023 for more information as the date approaches.
The Centralia-Chehalis Chamber of Commerce presents this annual parade that makes its way through the heart of downtown Chehalis, ending with an appearance from Father Christmas himself. Bundle up and bring the family on down to South Market Boulevard, because this event is completely free. Dozens of community groups, churches, businesses and organizations create floats for the parade that celebrates the holiday spirit in our communities.
The Lighted Tractor Parade is a delight for everyone, urban and rural, young and old. What started as a small parade with only a handful of tractors has evolved into a do-not-miss holiday experience. More than 80 entries decked out in holiday splendor with a minimum of 1,000 Christmas lights each rambled through downtown Centralia in 2016! This year's event takes place Dec. 9 at 6 p.m.