Winds to nearly 80 mph hammered the Newport Chamber of Commerce’s Seafood and Wine Festival facilities at South Beach Saturday. Damage was most pronounced on the north side of the tent complex. The tent company owner told News Lincoln County that he’s confident they will have the north tent re-assembled and ready for the opening of the festival late next week. Don’t know if he knew there is another storm coming ashore tomorrow with winds 10 mph higher than today’s event. We can only hope that he and the rest of us will get lucky and dodge the bullet.
The Seafood and Wine Festival is the biggest special event on the Central Coast. And it’s weather events like this one that seems to be repeated over and over that can have life or death consequences for important fundraisers. The Lincoln County Commission has lately been holding meetings around the county trying to figure out if there is enough voter support to build a new Special Event Center at the Fairgrounds. One selling point for the proposal is that events like Seafood and Wine wouldn’t have to worry about big storms blowing them off the calendar. The center can be built only if the voters say yes at a future election.
Here’s a few photos taken by Lora Posner and Ken Gagne of the damaged tents