10 years ago this week — 2011

For some festivalgoers, it is a time to absorb the ethnic passion of Scandinavian culture. For others, it is a way of communing with ancestors by embracing one’s Danish, Finnish, Swedish, Norwegian or Icelandic heritage.

And for many it is a once a year opportunity to dress head-to-toe in traditional Scandinavian regalia, feast on Scandinavian cuisine, buy and sell Scandinavian merchandise, dance to high-tempo folk tunes and enjoy an event that has evolved from a community affair to an institution of the Northwest.

The 44th annual Astoria Scandinavian Midsummer Festival turned the Clatsop County Fairgrounds into an oasis of old-country culture and customs during the weekend.

The festival kicked off Friday evening with a flag-raising ceremony, followed by the coronation of Senior Miss Denmark Cari Knapp as this year’s Miss Scandinavia.

WARRENTON — Back in April, Warrenton High School fisheries instructor Steve Porter and his class realized they had an unusually pleasant predicament.

It was time to start clipping the adipose fins of the salmon smolts the students had been raising from eggs. But this year, more fish had survived the months in tanks at the school’s facility beside the Skipanon River. So many more that Porter wasn’t sure they’d have enough time to get clipping and tagging done before the end of the school year.

“We realized we had almost 21,000 out of 26,000 fish survive,” Porter said. “That’s a record for us,” he said.

For years, disease from the murky brown river water piped into the building had plagued the hatchery. Thousands of the tiny fingerlings died, and only some of the time the class and its teacher could figure out why.

A new $63,000 filtration system was installed last year, delivering clean, super-oxygenated water to the facility and virtually eliminating disease. The river was bypassed and double-filtered rain and well water was used instead, making it the first fish hatchery in the state to use collected rain as its primary source.

Clatsop Care Center in Astoria is bringing the great outdoors to its own backyard.

A $10,975 grant acquired in mid-May from the Better Nursing Home Care Fund of the Oregon Community Foundation will help the center create a healing garden for its residents, their families, the center staff and volunteers.

The wet spring in Oregon made it to No. 2 in the record books.

The Oregonian reports it was the second-wettest spring in 117 years of record keeping.

The National Climatic Data Center figures also said it was the fifth-coolest spring in Oregon.

50 years ago — 1971

Rain drove parade marchers under umbrellas and raincoats, and clusters of 25 to 30 youngsters, parents and grandparents gathered under store awnings and overhangs. The sun tried to say “hi” and “welcome” to Astorians and visitors alike, but managing most of the day only to swarm over the town in a gray glare, blocking the rain from becoming a downpour and stopping it completely for the half-hour of the parade so people could shed rain gear.

These were some of the sights at Saturday’s Astoria Scandinavian Midsummer Festival. The fourth festival was also the largest, with crowd estimated at 4,000. It was also the first one to be rained on. The celebration was a success in the eyes of attendees and festival officials.

The Astoria school board voted to accept a policy revision regarding married students at a special meeting Monday.

The alterations in the board’s married students policy were prompted by a letter from the Astoria High School student council’s grievance committee, charging that the then district policy was “discriminatory and does not afford equal educational opportunities, as married students cannot participate in all phases of the educational process.” The grievance committee also cited court precedents, including one U.S. Supreme Court ruling, intimating that some sections of the Astoria policy might be illegal.

The revised policy, accepted Monday, allows married students to participate in all school activities and replaces the mandatory reporting of student marriages. The new policy states, “Students who are married are requested to inform the Dean of Boys or the Dean of Girls of their married status.” Under the policy change, students may no longer be expelled if they do not inform school authorities of their married status.

Married students will now be able to participate in extracurricular activities related to coursework, such as school band performances, and will be able to hold school leadership positions, such as editor of the school newspaper, and receive awards like other students.

75 years ago — 1946

Astorians, along with thousands of other in the Pacific Northwest, felt a bit of shaking Sunday morning at 9:13 a.m. in a distinctly noticeable Earth sway. The earthquake continued for about 30 seconds with three quakes following each other in close succession, rattling dishes on cupboard shelves and causing hanging household fixtures to swing back and forth in a highly disconcerting way.

On the waterfront the trembler was particularly noticeable with office buildings, erected on pilings like the ferry headquarters, swaying as much as 3 inches from their regular position. Cracked plaster in a number of residences was reported today along with some minor damage to the interior walls of offices in the Young Building at the corner of 14th and Commercial streets.

Downtown hotels were the scene of the most excitement in Astoria, where guests still in their rooms and jittery from recent major hotel disasters around the country swamped telephone switchboard operators with their requests for information about what was going on.

A terrific explosion startled residents of the Venice Park area in Seaside at about 2:15 a.m., but the cause of the violent blast, which aroused everyone in the district, has not been ascertained.

Military authorities at Fort Stevens considered it likely that it had been caused by a Japanese mine. It was explained that American mines were not of the floating type and would not come drifting in.

Since the blast was of great force, the mine went off on the surface and was not set off by a fishing vessel or other craft, military authorities said.

The sunken minesweeper AM 360 has been partially raised and moved in closer to the shore in shallow water by the Marine Contractors firm, which is salvaging the vessel.

Beginning to draw up on the cables and straps laid under the hull of the 180-foot craft, the derrick barge Cairo picked up the minesweeper sufficiently to permit moving of the hull about 100 yards towards the beach on Saturday. Cables were slackened and the minesweeper rested on the bottom until the raising was resumed today. The deck was reported above water this morning.

An official announcement by the U.S. Navy is expected soon to confirm unofficial reports that a revocable permit has been issued for joint use with the Navy of the Astoria naval airport by commercial and private aircraft.

Such a permit would allow joint use by civilian aircraft of the airport during the reconversion period, subject to revocation at any time when naval needs require.

There are two phases of the tourist promotion business — “Bring ‘em here and keep ‘em here,” Manley Robinson, director of the travel information bureau of the state highway department, told 60 Astorians who turned out for the first session of a six-session tourist host school at the Clatsop County Circuit Court rooms on Wednesday night.

The highway department will attempt to fulfill the task of bringing tourists to Astoria by its expanding nationwide publicity program, but it is up to the people of the communities which entertain the tourists to keep them here, Robinson said.