ARLINGTON - Preparations are nearly complete for the 23rd annual Big River Band Festival.

The two-day festival takes place Saturday and Sunday, June 26 and 27, at Earl Snell Memorial Park on the Columbia River. The festival is free. The event opens at 8 a.m. with 5K and 10K runs and continues until Sunday at 4 p.m. with music, a market place, food and entertainment for the entire family.

"The 234th Army Jazz band will be here this year," said Norm Cox, festival music director. "It's always a musical treat when they come to town."

The schedule this year includes many new bands as well as some familiar groups from past years. The Arlington Big River Band opens the music entertainment at noon Saturday. Performing for the first time in Arlington is the Capital City Jazz Band of Salem; Gorge Jazz, a newly formed group from The Dalles/Hood River area; and the Notables, a Dixieland jazz group.

Returning to the festival is the Whiskey Hill Jazz Club, a youth group from the Canby area, which will perform in the park and for the Saturday evening dance.

"The dance has been a big hit for the last couple of years," Cox said.

Sunday's musical line-up includes The Gorge Winds, 234th Army Jazz Band, Bucerias Jazz Band, White Salmon Jazz Band and Bram Brata, a steel drum band from the Tri-Cities.

In addition to the music, there will be a children's sidewalk art contest and a children's money scramble. A marketplace will offer a variety of items for sale as well as food and refreshments, both days.

The festival will once again host the popular Rose City Water Ski Team of Portland. The team will perform both days.

The 10K Run boasts a new course this year that eliminates the hills, leaving runners with a fairly even route. Registration for the run begins at 7:30 a.m. at the Arlington Marina, for more information, call 454-0183.

China Creek Golf Course will be open both days. For information on the golf course, call 454-2000.

Big River Band Festival

Saturday-Sunday, June 25-26,

Earl Snell Memorial Park, Arlington


8 a.m. 5K and 10K Run

11 a.m. Rose City Water Ski Team

11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Marketplace, food and refreshments

Noon Big River Band

1 p.m. Capital City Jazz Band

2 p.m. Gorge Jazz

2 p.m. Children's Sidewalk Chalk Art

3 p.m. The Notables

4 p.m. The whiskey Hill Jazz club

5:30 p.m. Rose City Water Ski Team

8:30-10:30 p.m. Dance in the Park, Whiskey Hill Jazz Club


10 a.m. Ecumenical Church Service

11 a.m. Rose City Water Ski Team

11 a.m. to 5 p.m. marketplace, food and refreshments

Noon The Gorge Winds

1 p.m. 234th Army Jazz Band

2 p.m. Bucerias Jazz Band

2 p.m. Children's Money Scramble

3 p.m. White Salmon Jazz

4 p.m. Bram Brata


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