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Join us for the Newport Loyalty Days and Sea Festival!



It’s that time of year again! Come celebrate the 66th annual Newport Loyalty Days and Sea Fair Festival! The Festival will take place May 5th through May 7th and is a chance for locals and visitors to come together and support the community, country, and the brave men and women who serve and have served our nation. This year’s Loyalty Days celebrates the 50th anniversary of the end of the Vietnam War by giving special honors to those who served in Vietnam, and officially says, “Welcome Home Vets.” Bring the whole family and all of your friends down to the coast for a weekend of fun and remembrance!


The idea for Loyalty Day originated with East Coast chapters of Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) shortly after World War I, and steadily gained popularity across the nation. The purpose of the event was to set aside a special day for the reaffirmation of loyalty to the United States of America and for the recognition of the heritage of American freedom. Shortly after Loyalty Day was recognized by Congress in 1955, and even before President Eisenhower dedicated it to a national holiday in 1958, Newport’s American Legion Post #116 started the local Loyalty Day Festival in 1956. Newport’s first Loyalty Day was celebrated with a free crab dinner.


Although a fixture of the Newport community, there was a lapse in organization in 1973, and the event went unobserved. This prompted the students of Newport High School to set and accomplish the goal to revive Loyalty Day in Newport. The determined teens breathed fresh life into Loyalty Day, and with their active participation since 1974, the event has steadily grown in size and has added numerous activities. Local community volunteers are an essential part of the Festival’s continued success, and Newport remains one of the only cities in the United States to have made the national day into an annual weekend celebration.


The Festival will start on Friday, May 5th at 11:30 A.M. with a Veterans luncheon at the Newport 60+ Activity Center. The reading of the names of every fallen Vietnam Vet from Oregon will be held later that evening at 9 P.M. at Newport National Guard Armory.


On May 6th, HWY 101 will shut down for the parade at 11:30 A.M. from Hwy 20 north to Walmart. The Loyalty Days Run will start near Safeway on Hwy 101, with the Competitive Mile at 11:35 A.M., followed by the Open Mile at 11:38 A.M., the Youth and High School Mile at 11:44 A.M., Non-Competitive Community Mile at 11:47 A.M., and the Masters Mile at 11:51 A.M. The Parade will begin at 12 P.M. and will be led by the honor guard from Coast Guard Station Yaquina Bay, Newport fire, police, and other first responders, Grand Marshal, John Miller, and this year’s Loyalty Day Princesses, Kasin Schwab, Lilliebelle Bassingthwaite, and Julie Zeng. The parade will end just before the intersection of Hwy 20 and Olive St. An open house will be held at 1:30 P.M. at the American Legion, and a military display to honor vets will take place at the National Guard Armory at 2 P.M.

The Festival will conclude on Sunday, May 7th, with the Newport Fishermen’s Wives beginning the day with the Survival Suit Race at 9 A.M., where teams, including the princesses, will compete in a race between Port Dock 1 and Port Dock 5. The Blessing of the Fleet, to honor local fishermen and their families, will follow at 11:00 A.M. The Newport Fishermen’s Wives annual BBQ will take place at the Yaquina Bay Yacht Club at 1 P.M. and is free to the public until the food runs out. The final event of the Festival will be the Memorial Service to remember fishermen lost at sea, and it will take place at the Fishermen’s Memorial Sanctuary at Yaquina Bay State Park at 4 P.M.


The Newport Chamber of Commerce is always ready to welcome you to the beach! Visit newportchamber.org for a detailed calendar of events and a list of local businesses that will take care of every aspect of your stay.

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