What’s Happening at the Willamette River Festival in 2020?

In recent times, a lot has changed, but there are still a few things that remain certain…
The Willamette River is still flowing, and the Willamette River Festival is still happening this summer. Please join your community as we connect to the river through a series of interactive virtual activities combined with “in real life” (IRL) experiences throughout the week of August 15-22, 2020.

Virtual Festival Opening Ceremony
Saturday, August 15

Join us on our Willamette River Festival Instagram or Facebook page to view our for an “Opening Ceremony” created by Aiyana Brown of the Kalapuya Ilhi, acknowledging the Kalapuya Peoples of our local lands, and learn more about the inspiration behind the Willamette River Festival and meet the PaddleCross Challenge founder on our Facebook livefeed on Saturday morning.

2020 PaddleCross Challenge
July 22-August 22
Get ready to rumble down your favorite rapids as part of a combination virtual / IRL paddle challenge! Paddlers of all disciplines can choose to complete the official Willamette River Festival PaddleCross route, starting at the canoe canal in Alton Baker Park, heading downriver on the Willamette from Eastgate Woodlands. Registration opens July 22 and is only $10 per entry! All registered participants who complete the challenge will receive a one-of kind finisher’s patch. Check back for registration and race packet details. More Info

Plein Air PAINT OUT!
August 16-22

Join the Plein Air Painters of Lane County at the Willamette River PAINT OUT! River-centric landscapes to be painted along the Willamette River Greenway in Eugene and Springfield. Community viewings are planned with limited hours in Eugene-Springfield, as well as an online People’s Choice Award gallery. More Info

Self-Guided Tours of the Upper Willamette
August 16-22

Explore and experience the history as you walk, ride, or meander through the culture and ecology of the Upper Willamette watershed. Learn about the indigenous Kalapuya language and connection to the Whilamut Natural Area; view the Springfield Stormwater Mural Project and discover how stormwater restoration is making a difference for clean water in the Willamette watershed, or view some amazing wildlife from the West Eugene Wetlands. More Info

The Great Greenway BioBlitz on the Willamette River
August 19-22

Join your local Willamette River regional community for a community science bioblitz with the goal of observing and identifying as many species as possible along the Willamette River Greenway corridor during a four-day window of time. This will be a regional-wide event, with competitions between different areas to document as many species as possible across the entire mainstream using the iNaturalist app. More Info

#loveyourwillamette – River Stewardship Days
August 18-20

It’s time to “Get Dirty for GOOD” and give back to our river! Join your local community along with Willamette Riverkeeper, City of Eugene Parks & Open Spaces and Willamalane Parks & Recreation District for a day of stewardship and fun, as we clean the river, mulch the trees and clear invasives from riparian areas from Springfield to Eugene. More Info

PaddleSports Education Day
Tuesday, August 18

As part of the 2020 Willamette River Festival, the City of Eugene River House Outdoor Center will present informational videos and live Facebook feed challenges that focus on paddlesports safety, skills and education. Check back for a link to our video gallery.

River Safety Education Day
Thursday, August 20

The City of Eugene River House Outdoor Center will present video tutorials via Facebook and Instagram that focus on ways to experience the Willamette River from the surface and below (including snorkeling!) while keeping safety as the number one priority. Check back for a link to our video gallery.

Wisdom of the Elders Film Screening: The Peoples of Western Oregon
Thursday, August 20, 7PM
Indigenous scientists, artists and elders from several Oregon coastal tribes, including the Confederated Tribes of Siletz, Confederated Tribes of Coos, Lower Umpqua and Siuslaw Indians, and the Coquille Indian Tribe share observations of their changing environment, natural resource issues, and the beauty of tribes’ traditional arts, music and storytelling. Their unique perspectives and knowledge is more important now than ever. Join film producer, Kunu, and Director, Tim Keenan-Burgess, for this LIVE discussion and film screening. Please REGISTER HERE for this film screening.