Siuslaw Awards Nominations OPEN!

The 10th annual Siuslaw Awards event is fast approaching. The awards banquet, sponsored by the Florence Area Chamber of Commerce, will happen on February 7 at the Florence Events Center. This prestigious event recognizes excellence in the local business community by naming recipients for awards in Excellence in Customer Service, Curb Appeal, Non-Profit Achievement, Community Caring, Innovation in Business, and the Stu Johnston Business of the Year Award. Two outstanding individuals in the community will be honored with the First Citizen Award and the Future First Citizen Award. The First Citizen Award recognizes that individual who has given selflessly to the community based on community involvement, leadership, and overall community impact. The Future First Citizen Award recognizes a student based on his or her academic success as well as civic involvement and contributions to the community. The Florence Area Chamber of Commerce will also recognize an individual or business that […]


The Florence Area Chamber of Commerce is kicking off its annual Holiday Festival on Saturday, November 25. Santa’s arrival, hayrides, lighted boats at the marina, and the official lighting of its Christmas tree will take place in Historic Old Town; and shops and galleries will be open for holiday shopping all around town. Many events will take place in Historic Old Town between 3:30 and 7:00 p.m. “Rain or shine, it’s time to celebrate together!” says Bettina Hannigan, the Chamber’s executive director. “Our Old Town area is getting decked-out for the holidays and we are excited to announce that The City of Florence has planted a gorgeous live tree at the Siuslaw Interpretive Park for our town to enjoy year after year. Come on out to be a part of the festivities!” At 3:30 p.m. Santa and Mrs. Claus arrive via firetruck down Bay Street, courtesy of Siuslaw Valley Fire […]


The Florence Area Chamber of Commerce’s Visitor Center, 290 Highway 101, features a different local art exhibit each month. Their November display of local artistry features the photography of Rodger Bennett. “It’s an honor to have been chosen by the Chamber to hang my work in their lobby,” says Bennett. “I think that the Chamber’s monthly exhibits are a good offering of the Florence area’s arts community, and that gives credit to the Chamber, local artists, and the kinds of things that are unique to Florence. It also provides another attraction for locals and visitors alike to sample all the different kinds of arts and the artists behind them.” “I believe that quality art makes people feel better and that certainly is a growing attraction to Florence in itself,” he adds. Bennett’s exhibit includes nine self-framed prints. Several are printed on metal, a few are printed on foam board, and […]


The Florence Area Chamber of Commerce has announced the theme for its 111th annual Rhododendron Festival. “This year’s ‘Rhody Rendezvous’ theme intends to evoke a feeling of coming to Florence and meeting up with friends and family for a great time here in Oregon’s Coastal Playground,” says executive director Bettina Hannigan. “It’s our 111th year, making us about a year older than the Portland Rose Festival but a little younger than Pasadena, California’s Tournament of Roses,” adds Hannigan. “After that many years we’re pretty sure that several generations of Oregonians and other visitors have rendezvoused around our rhodies many times.” The festival takes place the third weekend of May each year, making it May 17-20, 2018. Traditionally the Davis Shows Carnival opens on Wednesday afternoon at the Port of Siuslaw parking lot, the Rhododendron Court coronation takes place Thursday evening at the Florence Events Center, and the town begins filling […]


The Florence Area Chamber of Commerce has selected the winner of a $250 cash prize in its 2017 photo contest. The organization was looking for the best photos of the fun, frolic, and iconic buildings and scenery, from Oregon’s Coastal Playground—an area up to 30 miles in any direction of Florence. More than 120 photos were entered. Steffen Hefley of Covington, Washington, entered the winning photo of her son running along the beach, happily dragging a long bunch of seaweed behind him. Hefley’s mother lives in Florence and created the “Dancing With Sea Lions” statue on exhibit at Sea Lion Caves. Hefley’s photo will be featured in the Chamber’s Visitors’ Resource Guide and other printed marketing pieces, on the Chamber’s website, and in social media. A panel of Chamber members selected the winner. “Steffen’s photo really captured a fun “playground” moment and expresses how great of a destination Florence is […]