[Heritage] Heritage Tradition designation given to Linn County Pioneer Picnic

Heritage Info heritage.info at state.or.us
Mon Jun 4 10:42:24 PDT 2012

The Linn County Pioneer Picnic, which has promoted fellowship and good
will among the people of Linn County and Oregon since 1887, has been
named an Oregon Heritage Tradition by the Oregon Heritage Commission.

The Linn County Pioneer Picnic is only the third event given the honor.
The first two were the Oregon State Fair, which began when Abraham
Lincoln was president, and the Pendleton Round-Up, which started in

“The Heritage Commission wants to recognize those traditions that
have helped define the state,” said commission chair Jan Mitchell.
“They are distinguished events that are part of our heritage as
Oregonians. This is certainly true of the Linn County Pioneer

“The Linn County Pioneer Picnic is extremely honored to receive this
designation from the commission,” said pioneer association president
Debie Wyne.  “In addition, I am grateful to association treasurer
Leisa Keyser and City of Brownsville administrator Scott McDowell for
their efforts in preparing the application.  On behalf of the pioneer
association board, I sincerely thank them and the commission.”

The Linn County Pioneer Picnic traces its beginnings back to 1887 in
Crawfordsville when it was a reunion of pioneers that settled Linn
County prior to 1855. In 1892, the picnic found its current location,
then a grove of trees on the river owned by a local family now known as
Brownsville’s Pioneer Park.

Now, up to 5,000 people attend a three-day event. The 125th anniversary
picnic will take place June 15-17 this year. Class and family reunions,
weddings and logging skills contests often take place alongside events
such as pie-eating, pie-baking, spelling and talent contests. There are
more than 30 chairmen that organize events and manage specific areas.

Proceeds from the events have been used to construct facilities in the
25-acre park, including a covered grandstand and stage, a flower cabin,
a pavilion and the Community Arts Building. These are used by
organizations and residents throughout the rest of the year. The Linn
County Pioneer Picnic also supports the Pioneer Picture Gallery, which
has approximately 20,000 photographic images. For more information about
the picnic, visit http://www.historicbrownsville.com

An Oregon Heritage Tradition must have been in continuous operation for
more than 50 years, demonstrate a public profile and reputation that
distinguishes it from more routine events, and add to the livability and
identity of the state, said commission coordinator Kyle Jansson.

The Oregon Heritage Commission coordinates efforts to solve statewide
heritage issues through grants, education, and advocacy, and also
promotes heritage tourism efforts. Information about the Oregon Heritage
Tradition is available at

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