Hospitality Industry

“World’s Largest”

August 31, 2010 | by Jon Rahl

Nearly three months into my tenure as a coastal resident, I’m quite astounded at the events I’ve seen in Seaside thus far. While I’m well aware that numbers can often be skewed any way your heart desires, I’m also aware enough to know what has happened in Seaside this summer – and nearly every summer, for that matter – is truly unique and close to one-of-a-kind.

In July, Seaside’s Independence Day celebration blasted off the summer season with the largest fireworks display (based on total shells shot) along the Oregon and Washington coastlines. Countless volunteers contribute to an event that draws an estimated 20,000 spectators, infusing the local economy with approximately $4 million. Many communities can tout a fantastic display of pyrotechnics, but few can witness them with the Pacific Ocean as a backdrop.
In August, two special events – staples to the Seaside community for over 20 years each – take place in the span of three weekends. The world’s largest amateur volleyball tournament – 29 years and counting – turned out 805 teams competing on 104 courts the second weekend of August. Two weeks later, Hood to Coast – the world’s largest running relay – wrapped up its 197-mile adventure in Seaside as the finish line for more than 20,000 participants (in addition to 1,000 Hood to Coast teams, there are 400 relay-walk teams competing in Portland to Coast). Of those participating, 23 countries and all 50 states were represented.

Remarkable would be understating the efforts and lengths that many go to in order to showcase Seaside as a premiere host to these world-class events.

While one can argue the ultimate effects of events like this on a community both positively and negatively, as a destination marketer I can speak to the fact that it’s rare you have a chance to sell your travel destination product to folks on a first-hand basis. Many participants in both events are repeat visitors. But many are first time participants and making a visit to Seaside for the first time in their life. Visits like these often translate into additional business for a tourist community. The participant sees the city, the sights and wants to return with family and friends. The effects are long-lasting and ones that shouldn’t be overlooked when thinking about why Seaside chooses to host these events.

“World’s largest” is a pretty profound statement to make, but when you can make it twice in the span of 15 days in August, you have something very special.

Leave a Reply

and so much more!

Pedal Boating through Seaside

Paddle boating Seaside is another unique way to see Seaside while getting a little exercise in the process.

Learn More
Enjoying the Breaks in Weather

Seaside and Oregon Coast offer unique setting for the rising and setting of the sun.

Learn More
The Seaside Estuary makes an ideal spot to go bird watching along the Oregon Coast.
Where to Go Birding in Seaside

Seaside may be a small town, but it’s a big destination for birds, and as a result, birdwatchers hitting nearby spots on the Ore...

Learn More
Customer Service and the Bottom Line

As we prepare for a new year and our annual Customer Service Awards Program, we visit the question that most business owners are f...

Learn More
Measuring Seaside’s Success

The barometer for marketing and advertising success of a destination can be tough to measure. There are several metrics we have ac...

Learn More
Seaside Skatepark

The Seaside Skatepark (also called the PTR “Hometown Park”) has a unique history. It was opened in June of 2007, and was built by Placed to Ride. The owner of Placed to Ride, Stefan Hauser, lives here in Seaside.

Learn More
Summer in Seaside can offer as much variety as our local candy stores.
How to Have an Epic North Coast Summer

A summer spent in Seaside is like a good clam chowder — fresh, flavorful and filling.

Learn More
Celebrating Spring

Celebrating spring and the lush wildlife in Seaside and the North Oregon Coast.

Learn More
A group of women prepare to learn surfing in Oswald West State Park. Photo by Justin Bailie.
New Year, New Adventures

Instead of starting the new year by committing to breaking bad habits — and then forgetting that you even made the resolution ...

Learn More
“Fascinated” on Broadway

Fascination has been a staple in Seaside, Oregon since the 1950s.

Learn More
Bell Buoy of Seaside offers fresh seafood and features ready-to-eat items in an adjacent restaurant.
Can’t-Miss Dungeness Crab Eats

It’s a short journey from ocean to plate in Seaside, especially when it comes to Oregon’s official crustacean: the delectable ...

Learn More
Celebrating the Moms in Our Life

Honoring motherhood through a photo on the beach

Learn More
Gone Fishin’

You know you’re in Seaside when . . . this sentence can be completed in numerous ways. Today I’ll finish it with: . . . you see a guy walking down the road in tall rubber boots, fishing pole in one hand, long silvery fish dangling from the other.

Learn More
Supersize Me!

A brief look at Seaside's past sweets and treats

Learn More
Knights of Summer: Seaside’s Lifeguarding Tradition

Seaside has had a rich lifeguard tradition for almost 100 years.

Learn More
Seaside Holiday Spirit
Seaside Holiday Spirit

Seaside holiday spirit is more than evident around town beginning in early November. Ushered in by lights and decorations going up...

Learn More
Life in the Fast Lane

Riding bikes in Seaside in 1897.

Learn More
Barefoot beachcombing: a Treat for Your Feet

Historical photo of children doing some barefoot beach combing.

Learn More