With its maritime heritage, artist spirit, and a touch of urban chic, Port Townsend is an easily accessible base camp to the Olympic Peninsula and beyond. Whether on land or sea; indoors or outdoors – Port Townsend has activities for every taste.
October is spectacular in Port Townsend as fall foliage offers a riot of glorious shades of amber, pumpkin and russet. The air is crisp with chilly nights, and if you catch a clear day, the sky seems bluer, with slanted sunlight gracing neighborhoods, marinas and trails. But it’s also a month of exciting events. Check out what’s happening around town, making this a favorite time of year to visit.
Port Townsend will sparkle on Thursday, October 5 at Port Townsend Main Street’s Girls’ Night Out. It’s a day and night of female camaraderie and shopping fun. This year’s theme is “You Sparkle!” so be sure to wear sparkles! Start the fun early with the “Tiara Trot,” a free, early morning run/walk. Meet at the Cotton Building, 607 Water Street, to register for this 1.47-mile walk/jog/run which starts at 7 am and jump start your day.
Downtown stores are hosting special events, in-store promotions and refreshments from 11 am to 8 pm at Girls’ Night Out. Raffle tickets are on sale in advance for $5 at participating merchants. The prize is valued at over $800. Must be 18 years old to enter. The evening ends with the popular Wrap Party at 8 pm at The Belmont, with a $10 suggested donation at door.
New this year–Girls’ Night Out Headquarters will be at the Cotton Building. Get your goodie bags here ($20 while they last!) and pick up your Girls’ Night Out schedule of events to plan your fun. Goodie bags are filled with gifts from local downtown businesses with coupon books and more. The Jefferson Healthcare Pop-Up features a photo booth, refreshments and drawings. Enter to win a portrait session by Deja View Photography.
Ride in style with PTeRider at Girl’s Night Out from 4-8 pm. Let PTeRider chauffeur you during the event with free rides downtown for Girls’ Night Out customers. Proceeds from Girls’ Night Out benefit Jefferson Healthcare Foundation to help provide breast and cervical cancer screenings, care and treatment for low income Jefferson County residents, as well as the Port Townsend Main Street Program, a 501c3 non-profit.
Comedy returns to the Key City Public Theatre’s main stage with October’s production of “The Book Club Play,” opening October 5 and running through October 21, Thursdays through Sundays at 7:30 pm, with 2:30 pm performances on Sundays.
This hit comedy about books and the people who love them is “Lord of the Flies with Wine and Dip.” When members of a devoted book club become the subjects of a documentary filmmaker and accept a provocative new member, their club meetings take a hilarious turn. Sprinkled with wit, joy and novels galore, “The Book Club Play” is a dangerous comedy about community, loving books, high and low culture, and the absolute terror of group dynamics.
Tickets are $20 Thursdays and Sundays, $24 on Fridays and Saturdays. There will be Pay-What-You-Wish performances on October 8 and 12. For more information or to purchase tickets, go to www.keycitypublictheatre.org.
And be sure to join the KCPT crew for the Halloween Dance Party on Saturday, October 28 at 7 pm at the KCPT Playhouse. $8 at the door. Too much fun to miss!
The 35th Annual Great Port Townsend Bay Kinetic Sculpture Race launches Saturday, October 7, with thrills, chills, songs, and, of course, there will be glory! This year Kinetic Goes Kosmik beginning Saturday with the Parade, Sculpture safety test and Water Kourse starting at low noon in downtown Port Townsend. The Kween’s Koronation Kostume Ball is from 8 pm-12:30 am at the American Legion Hall, where you can dance the night away and bring in the new Rose Hips Kween. Sunday, October 8, the Sculpture, Sand and Mud Kourse Race begins at low noon, concluding with the Survivor’s Post Party and Awards Ceremony at 6 pm where everyone will bask in the Glory! For more info, go to www.ptkineticrace.org.
Celebrate the season and taste the region at the Olympic Peninsula Apple and Cider Festival, October 13-15. Hosted by East Jefferson County cider makers, this three-day event features a Firestarter five-course feast from beloved Chef Deborah Taylor (formerly executive sous chef at Canlis), a robust farmers market, hard cider tastings, an all-ages World Apple Day celebration at Finnriver Cidery, educational seminars including a Home Brew Q&A, and much more.
The weekend festivities are centered around Saturday’s Tasting Festival, which features a spread of northwest cideries and special guest producers presenting traditional and innovative ciders. Guests of the festival will enjoy over 40 regional ciders, live music, cider pressing, apple tastings and pairings, and a lively atmosphere of networking and celebration. The event’s Tasting Festival After Party at Propolis Brewing, features a fire show and dance party. For a truly authentic Pacific Northwest, tree-to-glass experience, go to www.AppleandCiderFest.com.
And for the kiddos, don’t miss the Port Townsend Main Street’s 22nd Annual Downtown Trick or Treat, October 31 beginning at 4 pm with a parade down Water Street. Our merchants will be offering treats for the kids…and, you never know, maybe some tricks too!
Save the date for upcoming events in November and early December:
Jefferson County Holiday Craft Fair
Port Townsend Arts Guild Holiday Craft Sale
Main Street’s Merchants’ Open House and Small Business Saturday
Key City Public Theatre’s “Spirit of the Yule”
Main Street’s Community Treelighting and Santa’s Visit
Visit us in October and enjoy everything Port Townsend!
Join us October 7-8, 2017 for thrills, chills, songs and of course…Glory!
The theme this year is “Kinetic Goes Kosmic.” A kinetic skulpture is a human powered, artistically enhanced vehicle that must go through sand (Kwick Sand), mud (The Dismal Bog), float on water (The Great Bay), and transverse hilly, silly neighborhoods. Some skulptures are engineering marvels while most are a mixture of bicycle parts, styrofoam, duct tape, imagination and prayers. Awards are given to each racer whether they want it or not, but the most highly prized award is the “Mediocrity Award,” the skulpture that finishes in the middle of the pack. Kinetic racers as well as Glorious Spectators must be kapable of having fun without taking the event too seriously.
Complete information on the race, the Kween Koronation Kostume Ball, and much more at https://ptkineticrace.org/.
photo by Tina Kerrigan
From historic wooden boats, to with farm-fresh foods, historic re-enactments, and films for every taste, Port Townsend has it all this month. We look forward to welcoming you here!
This month at the Port Townsend Farmers Market you can find an abundance of tomatoes large and small; slicers, saucers and salad toppers, ranging from burgundy to bright red and golden to green. Have you ever wondered which varieties you like most? The Tomato Taste Off on September 2 from 9 am to 2 pm, is your chance to answer the age-old question of which tomato most strikes your fancy. Farmers Market food vendors will serve up dishes featuring local tomatoes from paella to tomato basil hand pies. Learn more at: jcfmarkets.org.
Experience the American Civil War Living History & Skirmish at Fort Worden, September 2-4, 9 am to 5 pm. The 4th US Infantry Company C is committed to education about the Civil War through living history displays and performances. They portray the life of a soldier and civilian from both the North and South during the American Civil War. They will be setting up camp on the Parade Ground Saturday, Sunday and Monday over this coming Labor Day Weekend. An 1800s Contra Dance will be held in the USO Building on Saturday, September 2 from 8 – 11:30 pm. Sponsored by the Coast Artillery Museum. Donations are appreciated. For more information, http://www.civilwareventfortworden.org/
A week later, America’s largest Wooden Boat Festival celebrates its 41st year and opens Friday, September 8 at 9 am with tall ships, paddleboards, kayaks, tug boats, a fleet of wooden boats and everything in between. Demonstrations, presentations, plays, music, dancing, and great food provide a weekend of fun for all ages. Running through Sunday, September 10, the annual Port Townsend Wooden Boat Festival is open until midnight on Friday and Saturday nights and from 9 am to 5 pm on Sunday.
Organized and presented by the Northwest Maritime Center, the festival features over 250 boats, 100 presenters from around the world sharing their adventures, talents, and expertise on four indoor and four outdoor stages, plus live music all weekend on the main stage. Find quaint bars, great food and unbelievable scenery at this festival on the Salish Sea.
The festival features free boat rides for all ages and a paddleboard pool that kids will love! For those more daring and adventurous, try paddleboarding and kayaking off the beach. And for a more relaxed way to get on the water, rowboats and launch tours are available. For those who want some nostalgia, try a longboat ride, or sail and row in a historic replica of George Vancouver’s 1792 ship!
The weekend concludes with the awe-inspiring “Sail-By” at 3 pm on Sunday where hundreds of wooden vessels of all sizes and shapes pour out of the harbor and sail along the waterfront in full sail celebration. “If you are into wooden boats or just looking for a great party, Port Townsend is the place to be the second weekend of September,” said Northwest Maritime Center Executive Director Jake Beattie.
Highlights of the 2017 festival include tall ships Pacific Grace, Pacific Swift and Schooners Zodiac and Adventuress which will be available for touring and charter. Matt Rutherford’s presentations and movie of his incredible solo-circumnavigation of the Americas will entertain and amaze. And head to the Author’s Tent to meet the authors of the latest cruising, adventure and technical books. For the weekend’s full schedule of events, presentations, and activities during the festival, visit www.woodenboat.org.
If you’re eager to experience a working farm and connect with local farmers, don’t miss the 15th Annual Jefferson County Farm Tour, September 16 and 17, from 10 am to 4 pm. With many Jefferson County farms participating in the tour you’ll meet many of the people that are part of the county’s thriving food and fiber systems. Experience farm tours, live music, educational demonstrations and kid’s activities. Included in the weekend of events are 18 local farms which highlight food, fiber, cider, oysters and more.
The Farm Tour Pie Party is Saturday, September 16 with a pie walk, pie eating contest, whole pies, pies by the slice and local berry pies! This is a fundraiser, which will be held at Finnriver Cider Garden in Chimacum, with live music by Joy In Mudville and some of the county’s best pies. Suggested donation is $5. For a full listing of events go to tinyurl.com/getonthefarm or call 360-379-5610.
The 18th Annual Port Townsend Film Festival will screen 89 new indie films, most with personal appearances by filmmakers and stars, over three days, from September 15 to 17, in venues throughout town, including the restored vaudeville-era Rose Theatre and crystal-chandeliered “Starlight Room.”
Special guests this year include Academy Award-winning director Morgan Neville, who has interviewed, on camera, icons of both pop music (such as Mick Jagger, Bruce Springsteen, Joni Mitchell and Bette Midler) and classical music (such as cellist Yo-Yo Ma and his Silk Road Ensemble). Both films will be screened. Neville has made over 50 films, most of them shown worldwide.
Also appearing is an expert in coral reefs with Chasing Coral, an astronaut in training with The Mars Generation, a traditional Inupiat (Bering Sea) dance group with Angry Inuk, and an insect chef with Bugs on the Menu, along with over 80 filmmakers.
An entire block of Taylor Street is closed for mingling all three days. And each night is a free outdoor movie projected on a giant screen under the stars. This year, see Chicken Run, Morgan Neville’s 20 Feet from Stardom and the always-popular Princess Bride.
To see the entire 2017 lineup of 89 films (including an interview with Morgan Neville) go to www.ptfilmfest.com. Buy your pass online, or call the box office at 360-379-1333.
Save the date for upcoming events in October!
Port Townsend Kinetic Skupture Race
Key City Public Theatre’s “The Book Club Play”
Olympic Peninsula Apple & Cider Festival
Port Townsend Main Street Downtown Trick or Treat
Visit us in September and enjoy everything Port Townsend!