Sunday we started the day at the Astoria Scandinavian Midsummer Festival, a festival dedicated to the Scandinavian heritage of people in the area whose ancestors moved here to work in the shipping industry. Some of my ancestors were from Sweden and Norway, so it was a glimpse at our roots as well. We had a breakfast of Finnish Pannukakku with ham and fruit before walking around to look at the vendors, the Viking camp, and the dancers. The kids enjoyed the area just for them with games, prizes, face painting, and a puppet show. They got necklaces with their names spelled in Runes, and Lexi got a flower garland with ribbons to wear in her hair.
Then we went back to downtown Astoria to ride the trolley. It was over 100 years old and ran on a track back and forth along the river. Torsten really liked it, but so did everyone else visiting Astoria. It was very crowded! We got off the trolley to eat lunch at a little hole-in-the-wall barbecue place. Then we got back on the trolley and rode all the way to both ends. We learned some interesting facts about Astoria’s history, including the two major fires that wiped out a big portion of downtown and how it got its name from the name of the ship of the first European who came to the area. We also learned about how Lewis and Clark actually went on land first on the Washington side of the river but decided to spend the winter on the Oregon side because the water was calmer and the Clatsop Indians were friendly. We also learned that many movies have been filmed in Astoria, including The Goonies, Free Willy, and Kindergarten Cop. It is a picturesque setting for movies. After disembarking from the trolley, we drove to find the house from The Goonies and take a quick picture of it.
We left Astoria and headed a few miles away to a reconstruction of Fort Clatsop. The reconstruction was based on Clark’s drawings of the original fort they built to spend the winter in before heading back to St. Louis. The Expedition members stayed at the fort for 106 days and only had 12 days without rain. Out of those 12, only 6 were sunny. Luckily we had better weather–70s and sunny again.
“Ocean in view!” We drove a few more miles to Seaside, which was the first resort town in Oregon and was founded in 1920. Our inn had a balcony with a view of the ocean, and we walked out on the beach to wade in the water. Clouds rolled in as soon as we got there, but the sun peeked out a few times. We felt the same excitement Lewis and Clark did when the finally glimpsed the Pacific Ocean for the first time. We had finally made it here after two weeks of driving, although it took almost two years for Lewis and Clark. Lexi and I walked the promenade to the center of town-Broadway Street, which once was paved with seashells but now is a tourist trap. We had pizza in our room and watched The Goonies. Lexi really liked it, and it was fun to watch for the places we’d seen in Astoria.