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Azalea Fest runs today through Monday

Cloudy skies with a chance of showers is forecast for the first day or two of the  73rd Azalea Festival scheduled from today through Monday in the Brookings area, but sunshine is expected to prevail come the weekend.

Hundreds of volunteers have been preparing for the festival for weeks, said event organizer Les Cohen, of the Brookings-Harbor Chamber of Commerce.

He was still waiting to hear from the Oregon National Guard about whether there will be a jet fighter flyover during Monday’s veterans’ memorial service.

There are no major changes to this year’s festival, except for the addition of a half-marathon during Sunday’s Azalea Festival Run. The event begins with a free Kids Dash at 8:30 a.m. at Brookings-Harbor High School  track field, followed by a 10K run and half-marathon at 10 a.m. Registration begins 45 minutes before the event.

“We have a lot of interest in the half-marathon, with people coming from all over southwest Oregon and to the north,” Cohen said. “This is something I hope will continue to grow every year.”

The street fair in downtown Brookings is expected to be filled with new and returning vendors, a food court and a children’s carnival that includes a petting zoo and pony rides. Members of the Brookings-Harbor High School football team will be on litter parol, Cohen said.

The Azalea Festival Art Show will feature more than 300 pieces by local artists, he said.

The Friends of the Library Book Sale begins at noon today and will close at 8 p.m. at the Chetco Community Library, 405 Alder St. The sale will continue through the weekend. Hours are noon–5 p.m. Friday, noon–4 p.m. Saturday, and noon–3 p.m. Sunday.

The sale features 40,000 books, including hundreds of children’s books, a collection of boat books, an entire major authors’ section and plenty of large-print books.

Here are more festival details:

• The Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial Roll Call is at 6 p.m. Friday at Brookings City Hall.

Veterans will hold a roll call of the 641 Oregonians killed during the Vietnam War, 1959–1973.

• The Azalea Festival parade on Chetco Avenue (Highway 101) will start Saturday at 10 a.m. at the north end of Brookings and end at Azalea Park.

Azalea Park events will include Saturday’s presentation of  parade awards, as well as introductions of the Azalea queen and her court, the grand marshal, pioneer citizens and honored guests at 1 p.m. at the bandshell.

• The Kids’ Fishing Pond, hosted by the Oregon South Coast Fisherman’s Association, will be open from 8 to 11 a.m. Saturday in the Ray’s Food Place parking lot. Fishing is free for children age 12 and younger.

• Two car shows will keep gearheads busy all weekend.

The Curry County Cruisers Show and Shine Car Show will begin at 11 a.m. Saturday at the Port of Brookings Harbor. Cars will be on display through 4 p.m.

The Curry County Cruisers’ competitive Car Show is scheduled from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday at the Port of Brookings Harbor.

• The Azalea Festival Art Show will be open from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday at the Azalea Middle School gym, 505 Pacific Ave.

The show includes a display of adult and children’s work, demonstrations and door prizes. Vote for the People’s Choice Award.

The Saturday Night Art Gala, from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Azalea Middle School gym, will feature the announcement of winners, an interactive evening of art, portraits, and the sale of small pieces of art. There will be a live auction and door prizes.

• The Brookings-Harbor Garden Club Flower Show and Plant Sale will be held at the Chetco Grange Community Center, on the corner of Highway 101 and Zimmerman Lane in Harbor.

The show will be open 9 a.m.–5 p.m. Friday, noon–5 p.m. on Saturday, and 10 a.m.–3 p.m. on Sunday. It will include rare plants and arrangements and live flower displays. The sale will feature plants grown by garden club members, including vegetable starts and cuttings from rare plants.

The Azalea Festival Plant Sale will be held from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday at Flora Pacifica, 15447 Oceanview Drive in Harbor.

• The “Party at the Port” will begin at 4 p.m. Friday. It is held at the Boardwalk each day and will feature live music, a beer garden and food.

The party will continued from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m.–2 p.m. Sunday, offering live music, the car shows, slug races, and performances by local school bands and choir.

• The 19th Annual Slug Races registrations will begin at noon Sunday at Slugs ’N’ Stones ’N’ Ice Cream Cones at the Boardwalk. Home grown slugs are welcome and rental slugs ($2 each) are available. Proceeds go to the South Coast Humane Society.

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