From a Facebook post and online interview with Emily Pelston of Scottsburg, Indiana   December 28, 2022 My boyfriend and I travelled to Florence for the holiday and all I have to say is “WOW!” Florence is such an amazing place. We had a phenomenal time and got to experience some of the most beautiful sights and people. I don’t exactly remember any research I did personally, we kinda just did a spontaneous trip! The sand dunes were something I would have personally never done but am so glad we did! We are from Southern Indiana so this what such an incredible change of scenery! The hospitality and kindness of everyone is also such a bonus. I loved getting to talk to the owners of lots of the businesses down by the river. Here are some pictures from our trip! When we finally decided on Oregon, we opened up Google […]

4th of July will Be A BLAST in Florence and more fun adventures to plan for!

Sunny Summertime Greetings from Florence, Oregon’s Coastal Playground! Here’s a quick peek at what’s coming up in and around Florence this summer and beyond… Don’t just daydream about our uncrowded ocean beaches, towering sand dunes, peaceful lakes, inspiring ancient forests, world-class golf courses, sandboarding, ATVs, fishing, crabbing, and…you get the idea. Come enjoy them! There truly are more things than you can do in just one day, and it’s time to start planning your next trip to the center of the Oregon Coast. July 4—Come join our Old-Fashioned 4th of July celebration. Florence is home to one of the best, biggest, and longest professional fireworks displays on the coast! It provides a perfect end to a day of fun all around town including a porch parade that directs drivers to all the great patriotically festooned homes, businesses, yards, windows, and of course…porches! You’ll also enjoy the bike parade through Historic Old Town, […]


The Florence Area Chamber of Commerce’s Visitor Center and Gallery, 290 Highway 101, features an everchanging exhibit of local artists’ work. Their newest display of local artistry features 2-D, 3-D, textile, jewelry, paint, stone sculpture, and photos from Ärtêfacts at 1255 Bay St. in Florence.   “Metal wall art is in abundance in my shop, so I featured a few of those,” explained owner Shelly Medeiros. “I also featured the ever-popular and artful Myra brand purses and SolMate Socks. I have way too many things to list, but suffice to say, it is a very unique and eclectic selection of fun stuff.”   Most everything I have in the shop, and at the exhibit at the visitors center, is handmade. Some items come from vendors, and some come directly from the makers.   The centerpiece of the exhibit are two stunning stone sculptures (a sea turtle and an octopus) created by […]

Rhody Court is “Back in Bloom”

For Immediate Release from the Rhododendron Court Leadership Team Thursday, December 9th, 2022 Rhody Court is “Back in Bloom” The Rhododendron Court took a year hiatus in 2021 and is coming “Back in Bloom” more boldly than ever.   On Thursday, December 9th both Siuslaw and Mapleton High Schools received information and inspiration about this year’s Court opportunity. Students in their Senior year are encouraged to apply. Applications are now open for the 115th Senior and Junior Rhododendron Court.  Deadline to apply is December 17th.  For the Senior Court applications are available digitally (bit.ly/2022RhodyCourtApplication) or via paper available at the Florence Area Visitors Center and Chamber of Commerce Office (290 Highway 101). Junior Court paper applications are available at Siuslaw and Mapleton Elementary School offices and at the Florence Area Visitors Center and Chamber of Commerce Office. The Court Leadership Team consists of a dynamic group of dedicated community members including; […]


The Florence Area Chamber of Commerce has selected the winner of a $250 cash prize in its 2021 photo contest. The contest was conducted from August 15 to October 15. A panel of Chamber members reviewed the entries.   The Chamber was looking for the best photos of the fun, frolic, and distinctive scenery from Oregon’s Coastal Playground—an area up to 25 miles in any direction of Florence. More than 100 photos were entered.   Brittany Buhler of Harrisburg entered the winning photo, taken on Heceta Beach during a girlfriend getaway to celebrate a friend’s upcoming wedding.   “We rented a beach house, went out for chowder, then went to the beach to build sandcastles. It wasn’t a typical bachelorette party, but it was what we wanted to do for our friend,” said Buhler.   Buhler used her iPhone SE set at f\2.2, ISO 25, and 12 mpx with no […]

Chamber Community Survey Here

Dear community members. As the Chamber continues to be the Catalyst for business, Convener of leaders and influencers and Champion for a thriving community, we want to hear from you. We know that our community is seriously challenged with short staff, workforce housing and childcare. These are all issues that are on our radar and that we’re working with fellow stakeholders to bring what resources and information we can to the Florence Area. This survey’s purpose is to hear directly from all facets of our community so we can best align our efforts to truly pursue a thriving community. Your help is greatly appreciated. Please be honest and constructive in your responses. We will draw four winners from the surveys submitted and they’ll win a $50 Visa gift card. Thank you again for sharing your thoughts and time with us. SURVEY HERE


The Florence Area Chamber of Commerce’s Visitor Center, 290 Highway 101, features an everchanging exhibit of local artists’ work. Their newest display of local artistry features mixed media encaustics by Jo Beaudreau, owner of BeauxArts Fine Art Materials and Gallery in Florence.  Encaustic is an painting technique using pigments mixed with hot wax and resin that has been used for centuries.  “This year’s works featured a challenge since we have been living in challenging times – why not embrace and take it head on?,” asked Beaudreau. Beaudreau chose to set some guidelines for herself which incorporated round shapes in various sizes and neon colors. With these parameters she was able to create unique works of abstract landscapes—colorful and surreal images of forest, lake, beach, sunrise, sunset, and more—while using her popular encaustic techniques. “Neon colors are, appropriate to our times, a challenge—hard to work with—because they are so vibrant. Not many artists use neon colors in […]


Florence Area Chamber of Commerce, in partnership with the City of Florence, Central Lincoln PUD, and Three Rivers Casino Resort is preparing to hang festive, colorful banners on power and light poles along the Highway 101 corridor and at the casino. The Chamber announced the effort in mid-May and had a call-to-artists for banner designs open through June 30. Lane County artist Tara Kemp’s designs were selected by the Chamber. Fine-tuning of the designs wrapped up in September. Kemp will receive $1000 for her suite of designs featuring paintings that cover the scope of local food, entertainment, sea life, and the area’s beautiful and diverse landscape. The first set of banners are scheduled to be installed soon. “I love it that the Chamber, the City of Florence, and their partners value creating a positive impression of the area through a visual display. I love it that they value creativity and […]


The Florence Area Chamber of Commerce is looking for the best amateur or professional photos of the fun, frolic, famous attractions, iconic buildings, and beautiful scenery of Oregon’s Coastal Playground. The winner will collect a $250 cash prize and have their submitted photo featured in the Chamber’s resource guide and other printed marketing pieces, on their website, and in social media. A panel of Chamber members will decide the winner. The winner will be announced the week of November 1, 2021. Deadline for entry is October 15, 2021. For more contest information, entry forms, and image release waivers visit FlorenceChamber.com/2021PhotoContest, call 541-997-3128, or e-mail Contest@FlorenceChamber.com. “We call this place Oregon’s Coastal Playground for a reason,” says Bettina Hannigan, the Chamber’s President and CEO, “so we’re looking for outstanding amateur or professional photos that convey our coastal playground theme. So download your best photos from you smartphone or camera and send […]


Artwork from the Florence Regional Arts Alliance (FRAA) is featured in the Florence Chamber of Commerce Visitor’s Center lobby, 290 Highway 101, through the end of September.   “We love the diversity of art provided this month by the Florence Regional Arts Alliance,” says the Chamber’s executive director Bettina Hannigan. “FRAA has become such an essential and dynamic part of the community and their efforts to advance tourism through the promotion of the arts is a tremendous compliment to the Chamber’s work in the region.”   FRAA chose the theme of “Community—Coming Together” for their exhibit, with artwork reflective of Florence’s diverse coastal life. Artists with work on display include, Kristin Anderson, fused glass; Stella Ault, watercolor; Pat Briggs, watercolor; Debi Ford, ceramics; Jack Hibbs, woodworking; Alan B. Huck, painting; Christine Hodges Huck, watercolor; Claudia Ignatieff, oil painting; John Leasure, oil painting; Tom Lederle, ceramics; Carol Lorraine, acrylic painting; Donna […]