Ahoy, mateys! All hands on deck for the Rockaway Beach Pirate Festival. Pirate festivals have grown in popularity in recent years, and the Rockaway Beach Pirate Festival and Treasure Hunt is proof that our region has caught the bug! People come from miles around donning their best pirate apparel. This Tillamook County tradition is exceptional fun for the whole family and takes place during the month of June.
Held in the heart of Rockaway Beach
Rockaway Beach Wayside is on the edge of the Pacific Ocean. Since 2012, the Rockaway Beach Chamber of Commerce has been presenting The Rockaway Beach Pirate Festival each summer. It’s a fun weekend full of entertainment for all ages, meant to herald the start of summer and give land-lubbers a taste of life on the high seas! The entertainment at the event includes: pirate music, roving pirates, themed food and drink, festival carnival rides, a number of street vendors, and swashbuckling sword fighting. There are also cannon firings and black powder demonstrations each day, with musket-loading methods dating back to the 1800s.
Get into the spirit
Who says costumes are just for Halloween? If you love getting dressed up, you’ll fit right in here. Bring out your captain’s hats, patches and tall boots to show your pirate pride. You can even get your face painted at the event (usually for kids, but artists will surely welcome enthusiastic adults as well)!
X marks the spot
One of the weekend’s highlights is an exciting treasure hunt for adults, with some great prizes (one year, it was a flat-screen TV), and an entertaining scavenger hunt for kids in downtown Rockaway Beach. Traipse around town in search of some hidden “gold” with your own pirate crew, for a fun adventure that will give you a reason to be outside. When the weather warms up on the Oregon Coast, there’s nothing like a nice day in the sun (just remember your hat and SPF 30!).
Sing “Yo ho ho!”
Enjoy some unique performances. In recent years, PDXYAR has come to the fest. They’re a band of “cutthroat scallywags” from the Northwest, and they love to show people a practical living history of pirates. Watch them enact fights, fire cannons, engage in fire dancing and more. Stop by their booth and play a game of Liar’s Dice (they’ll show you the ropes) or sign up to join their crew yourself!
And PDXYAR isn’t the only reenactment game in town: The King’s Navy also appears regularly at Pirate Fest. They’re a Portland-based group of sailing (and history) buffs who portray the sailors and mariners of the Royal Navy to give modern folks a realistic look into the past.
The event concludes with an amazing display of fire dancing.
Don’t get burned, come to the Rockaway Beach Pirate Festival, one of the hidden treasures of Tillamook County. And check out some of the other Rockaway Beach summer events, for even more fun! Rockaway has one of the most beautiful strips of beach on the Coast, and it’s the perfect spot for fun summer events.