We did this just for you, Corvallis. We compiled this 31-day list, with ideas for what fun there is to be had in each day of August. Well, what are you waiting for? Start livin’ it up!
Free Improv Show
This free improv show happens at DeMaggios Pizza in downtown Corvallis (151 NW Monroe Ave) on the first of every month, and begins at 9:30 p.m. With antics similar to those in the T.V. show Whose Line is it Anyway, these Corvallis comedians encourage audience participation.
With record highs sweeping the globe, beat the heat at these two local swimming holes:
Mary’s River Park: Follow the gravel path to the right and take a left at the fork. Head towards the river and you will find an expansive gravel beach carved by a horseshoe bend in the river. The current is gentle, and there arpe deep holes for swimming and shallows for young children to play in. Explore down the creek for plenty of pocket beaches.
Avery Park: Head down a gravel path to the left of the Parks building. Take a left at the fork and follow the noise that will lead you down a steep hillside to a beach party reminiscent of late 90’s MTV. Bring your pool floaties, try the rope swing, or settle under the shade for some rest.
Storytelling Open Mic at County Fair
Join The Advocate for our special summer edition of Storytelling Open Mic Night at the Benton County fair. Starting at 9 p.m., guests are welcome to the mic to share true stories to the theme “This Land.” An open-ended theme, “This Land” calls on our unique experiences and relations to our natural surroundings of the Willamette Valley.
Do you have a story to tell? Contact editor@corvallisadvocate. The first ten people to pre-register will receive a free parking pass and entry to the fairgrounds. Slots will be open to those wishing to sign-up at the event starting at 8:30 p.m.
Oh, Roaring 20’s Romeo
Experience a different kind of storytelling today. This version of Shakespeare’s play, Romeo and Juliet, is set in the Roaring 20’s and presented by OSU’s Bard in the Quad. Bring blankets and lawn chairs, as the event is hosted outside on the Memorial Union Quad, 2501 SW Jefferson Way, Corvallis. Tickets are $5-$17. Bard in the Quad runs from August 1-4 and August 8-11 at 7:30 p.m.
DIY Film Crash Course
This week-long event welcomes aspiring student filmmakers to participate in the “DIY Film Crash Course,” a project-based workshop at the Majestic Theatre. Instructor Jeff Oliver will teach students in grades 6 through 12 about “visual storytelling, editing on Final Cut Pro X, shooting HD footage” – all while creating a short film. Sessions will be held each day from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Monday through Friday. The cost for in-city students is $136, while the cost for out-of-city students is $170.
Embrace Your Inner Kid
Leave your wallet at home, pack a picnic, and take your kids or inner children to these playgrounds for a leisurely day spent locally:
Chepenafa Springs Park: This park, located at 2800 NW Daylily Ave, has a great view, lots of sun (bring sunscreen), a large playground, restrooms, a drinking fountain, and a picnic shelter. Visitors can access Timberhill Open Space and Chip Ross Park from the walking path that encircles it.
Arnold Park: This sweet little gem of a park on NW Harrison Blvd is often overlooked, with a playground, picnic tables, large trees, and open fields.
Franklin Square Park: A hidden treasure, this park within a charming neighborhood has it all. The playground features a giant climbing structure and lovely old trees dotting a large lawn which begs for bare feet.
Get a feel for life before trains, planes, and automobiles by saddling up and hitting the stables for a day of horseback riding. Head to Riverbottom Stables, located at 28970 OR-34, Corvallis, with some friends and family for a group lesson of 4-6 riders, $35 per rider. Sunflower Stables, at 6778 SW Plymouth Dr, Corvallis, also offers one-time lessons for $60 each.
Explore City Street Art
Jump on your bike and explore Corvallis’ eclectic street art scene. A nice route starts on Harrison and First Street on the bike path where you will find a psychedelic lion perched atop the blue hills of the Coast Range amid a Cerulean Blue sky.
Ride the bike path towards town and on your right you will find “Aguante Pachamama,” a goddess revered by the Andean and South American people, the Earth Mother, shown embracing fiddlehead ferns, strawberries, Queen Anne’s Lace, grass, mint, and hops under the glow of an eclipsing sun. An incredible work of art by Eileen Hinkle.
Zigzag up and down the alleys from Western to Harrison, between First and Fifth Streets, where there are plenty of murals and street art. In the alley off Third and Madison is a haunting moon-mountain woman illuminating a golden sun. Across from her, a Batman-gone-Dracula stands guard.
To create your own route, search “Public Art in Corvallis” in Google Maps, where you can find info on various sculptures and murals around town.
Visit Harris Bridge Vineyard
Not much compares to an afternoon sampling sweet vermouth, pinot gris, aperitifs, dessert wines, and brandy in the Harris Bridge Vineyards’ tasting room. The sweet vermouths are delicately layered with fruit, spice, and earth. Even sweeter, children are welcome in the tasting room and on the winery grounds.
With your glass in hand, head out to the lawn for an evening picnic — pack your own or purchase a snack plate — surrounded by vineyards and forested hills. Walk down to the river, and don’t forget to visit the Harris Covered Bridge.
Later happenings include the Folk Festival from August 16 to 18, which offers live music, camping, parades, and more. Free outdoor yoga classes are also hosted by Cathy Corkery every Wednesday evening at 6 p.m. through the end of August.
Harris Bridge Vineyard is located at 22937 Harris Rd, Philomath.
Garden Tour & Alley Dance Party
Join the Corvallis Environmental Center for a free public tour of the 1-acre Starker Arts Garden for Education (SAGE) and the 2-acre Dunawi Creek Community Gardens. Guests will learn about the Food for Families program with its mission to relieve local hunger, along with other educational, volunteer, and community service opportunities. The tour starts at 9 a.m. at Bruce Starker Arts Park and runs for an hour.
Email any questions to kyler@
Later, celebrate American Dream’s 15th anniversary in the alleyway of their downtown location at 214 SW 2nd Street. The alleyway dance party is a 21+ event starting at 4:30 p.m., with music starting at 6. There will be dancing, giveaways, drinks, and of course, pizza.
Root, Root, Root for the Knights
The Corvallis Knights aim to provide affordable family fun. Between innings, the Knights’ interns and mascots lead the crowd in activities like the Chicken Dance, short games, and a classic sing-along to “Take Me Out to the Ball Game.” Concessions include local craft beverages by Block 15 and 2 Towns as well as stadium classics like pizza, hot dogs, popcorn, and ice cream. The Knights are part of the West Coast League which gives college level players throughout the region playing experience during the summer.
General admission is $7, while reserved seating costs $12. For more info, visit corvallisknights.com
Beat the crowds on Monday and visit one of the Mid-Valley’s more magical locales: The Enchanted Forest. Opened in 1971 by Roger and Mavis Tofte, this local amusement park off I-5 between Albany and Salem offers log rides, bumper cars (and boats for kids), music and comedy shows, a water and light show after sunset, and more – all for $13.50 for adults and teenagers, $12 for kids and seniors. The park is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and rides open at 10:30 a.m.
U-pick Something Different
When most people think of u-picking in the valley, buckets full of berries comes to mind. While blueberry, raspberry, and even strawberry u-picking are admirable summer activities, why not take a shot at some other-than-berry produce picking? One of several options is Drahn Acre Farms, located at 2345 NE Strawberry Lane in Corvallis. Their farm stand is open seven days a week, and u-picking includes crops like tomatoes and flowers.
Play, Corvallis, Play
If you hear piano music drifting down the streets during August, don’t be surprised. Every summer, hand-painted pianos pop up in locations throughout Corvallis including a few pianos within an easy walk for Corvallis Farmers Market on Riverfront park and in downtown Corvallis. Anyone may play the community pianos during Play, Corvallis, Play, from August 12 to September 7.
Check the corvallisfallfestival.org for updates and piano locations.
Corvallis Arts Walk
From 4 to 8 pm, artists open their doors to host exhibits, art related events, and demonstrations during the monthly Corvallis Arts Walk. One notable exhibit by artist Jonathan Bucci opens its doors on August 15 at CEI Artworks Gallery at 408 SW Monroe, Corvallis. Bucci is the Curator of Collections and Exhibitions at the Hallie Ford Museum of Art at Willamette University. The exhibit will feature one drawing based on a photo of President Reagan taken after an assassination attempt, as well as a compilation based on Grateful Dead concerts in the 1970’s, during the band’s “Wall of Sound” stage setup.
Oregon Rock and Gem Fest
Rocks, gems, and other unearthed treasures, this event at Benton County Fairgrounds is sure to please geode and geology enthusiasts alike. Produced by Neukomm Rock and Gem shop in Corvallis, vendors will be displaying crystals, minerals, fossils, and metaphysical items. There will be kids discovery areas, a beer garden, live music on Friday evening, and food trucks galore.
Friday from 1 p.m. – 8:30 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m. – 5 p.m., and Sunday 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. $3 for Adults, kids are free.
If you haven’t heard of the Corvallis Hash House Harriers, they are a local chapter of the international “drinking group with a running problem.” The hash typically takes place on foot, where “hounds” follow chalk or flour marks made by “hares” through all kinds or terrain, hitting false trails and halting along the way at various “checks.” This hash will take place on the Willamette River. As always, virgins (those new to the hash) are welcome. For time and location, join the Corvallis Hash House Harriers Facebook group and RSVP to the event. The hash typically involves risqué group serenades, drinking from one “sacred vessel,” consensual body contact (when desired), and other shenanigans. You really have to see it to understand. Advised for the open-minded. Cost is $5. Bring floaties!
Open Streets Corvallis
Open Streets Corvallis is a free community festival at Lilly City Park. From 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. a mile of city streets will be blocked off from Lilly Park to Tunison Park where there will various activities and mini-events, from ping-pong and selfie-booths to salons and music. Neighbors of the Open Streets are encouraged to set up activities in their front yards to join in on the festivities.
Spending a summer day performing a community service can not only be fun and fulfilling, but can create the stitch work of a close-knit community. Consider volunteering at Chintimini Wildlife Center, Heartland Humane Society, the Corvallis Environmental Center, Habitat for Humanity, the Corvallis-Benton County Library, or any other organization that strikes your fancy. These places need help from community members like you in order to thrive.
Check out the City of Corvallis website or The Advocate’s article “Volunteer Corvallis” for more information.
South Corvallis Cruise
Take a day to explore the South side of Corvallis. Start by caffeinating at Tried and True’s south location. Next, grab some grub and refreshments at the charming hideaway where Block 15 Brewery & Tap Room and 4 Spirits reside. Be sure to peruse local produce, baked goods, and other homegrown commodities at the Tuesday Farm Stand & Market from 5 to 7 p.m. at 1470 SE Alexander Ave.
Threads of History
The Benton County Historical Museum, housed in the old Philomath College building, will be taking part in the annual county-wide “Quilt County” with their “Boundaries” exhibition. The exhibition will feature quilts made by the members of SAQA-Valley South, an Oregon chapter of the international Studio Art Quilt Association which represents artists located in the Willamette Valley from Salem to Roseburg, and along the Oregon Coast from Newport to Coos Bay.
“Boundaries” runs from August 9 to September 21. For hours and info, visit http://www.bentoncountymuseum.
Movie in the Park
What is summer without enjoying a film under the stars? The Corvallis Parks and Recreation Department presents the time traveling classic Back to the Future at Avery park at 6 p.m. This free, family-friendly event will feature a Kid Zone, according to the Parks and Recreation website.
Glowing Hot Air Balloons
A fixture of summertime in Linn County, the Northwest Art and Air Festival will run all weekend, from August 23 to 25. Friday night kicks off with a special “Night Glow” event, where half a dozen balloons will be sent up and illuminated with different patterns against the darkening sky. The event will be held in Timber-Linn Memorial Park, on the eastern side of I-5. Event officials emphasize that the “Night Glow” will depend on the weather. Admission is free, while parking costs $10. Donations are welcome.
Get Your Gong Bath On
Relax and reset with Ecstatic Dance’s Weekly Gong Bath Meditation, where all are welcome to lie down engulfed in the glorious sounds of the gong for 45 minutes of stillness. This event takes place at Odd Fellows Hall, 223 SW 2nd St. from 7:15 pm to 8 pm (doors open at 7). Guests are asked to pay what they can afford from a sliding scale of $8 to $15 at the door with cash or check. Ages 16 and older are welcome. Those interested should bring a yoga mat or camping pad, plus a blanket and a pillow.
Women’s Equality Day
This day celebrates the anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment to the US Constitution, which gives women the right to vote. Passed in 1920, it is both remarkable and depressing how far we’ve come since. While women make up 51 percent of the U.S. population, they only make up 20 percent of representatives in Congress, and for every dollar a man makes in this country, a woman on average makes eighty cents. On this day, pay some respect to the leading ladies in your life by giving them a call (or a raise!), volunteering at a women’s shelter, or whatever you can do to show your gratitude.
Disc Golf in the Park
Get out for a game of disc golf at one of Oregon’s oldest courses inside Willamette Park, featuring 18 baskets and beautiful scenery. Working up an appetite? Perfect –— August is National picnic month. Get your grub on under the covered pavilion or beneath an ancient tree, while taking in the fresh summer breeze drifting from off the Willamette.
Benton County Natural Classics Tour
Today, take a tour of some of Benton County’s most iconic natural areas with rich histories. Begin by summiting the 4,097 ft Marys Peak to take in Cascade, Pacific, and Coast Range views. The tallest peak on the Coast Range, Mary’s Peak is known as tcha Timanwi in indigenous language, meaning place of spiritual power. The site was once home to a homesteading town named Peak between the late 1890’s and the nineteen-teen’s, as well as a downhill ski area with a rope tow once run by the Helonskis Ski Club.
Next, follow signs to Alsea Falls. This BLM Recreation Area is home to a 30-ft waterfall on the South Fork Alsea River, surrounded by old growth forest. The Alsea River gets its name from the Alsi Indians, a group more closely associated with the coast near the mouth of this remarkable river.
Make one last stop at Finley National Wildlife Refuge, established by the feds in 1964 to manage dusky Canada geese. This 5,325-acre area contains some of the last remaining intact Willamette Valley wetlands and prairies. It also contains its own homesteading history, with 8 buildings from the mid-late 1800’s, including the 1855 Fietcher House (named for German immigrant John Fietcher, whose family resided there), thought to be the oldest standing building in Benton County.
Scenic Bike Ride
How could any Corvallisite resist spinning their wheels through our lovely countryside. For inspiration, check out the Mid-Valley Bike Club’s pre-made routes: https://www.mvbc.com/
Beavers vs Cowboys
Support the Oregon State Beavers Football Team as they dive into football season with an epic battle against Oklahoma State’s Cowboys at Reser Stadium. The fun begins at 7:30 p.m. Tickets can be found online; the cheapest are selling for $34 each — get ‘em before they’re gone!
Saturday Farmers Market
Saturday Market is the heartbeat of Summer in Corvallis. Enjoy browsing locally grown and homemade products, fresh produce, artisan cheeses, fresh-cut flowers, smoked fish, and more. Live entertainment typically comes in the form of musical performances, salsa dancing, zumba, and ariel performers.
The market runs from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. every Saturday through November 23. For more details, visit locallygrown.org