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We’re Glad You’re Here!

Hi there and welcome to the Astoria-Warrenton area, the very best our beautiful Oregon Coast has to offer. With Astoria clinging to the hillsides that slope down to the Mighty Columbia River, and Warrenton blessed by the same river on the north and the beautiful beaches of the Pacific Ocean on the west, we can only imagine what Captain Robert Gray thought about his discovery, on May 11, 1792, when he and his crew guided their little ship “Columbia Rediviva” into the fabled “Great River of the West.” It is my belief that Captain Gray would be highly impressed seeing what has become of both Warrenton and Astoria. There have been more than a few changes in the last 223 years.

If Captain Robert Gray entered the Columbia River today, the first thing he would notice is that the “Columbia Rediviva” would have been guided through the treacherous crossing of the bar, nicknamed the “Graveyard of the Pacific,” by one of our highly trained and very brave Bar Pilots, who may have been dropped onto his ship by helicopter. Once inside the river the “Columbia Rediviva” would first sail past the rapidly developing City of Warrenton, with its state-of-the-art lumber and logging operations, two beautiful marinas, tons of shopping opportunities, and the site of a rapidly developing business and industrial park. Captain Gray would also be surprised to learn of our regional airport located in Warrenton, a great facility serving not only local and visiting aircraft, but also home to the U.S. Coast Guard Sector Columbia River and serving as its base for search and rescue helicopters. The Astoria-Warrenton area is indeed home to a large Coast Guard contingency including lifeboat and rescue swimmer training, aids to navigation services (USCG Fir) and our Coast Guard cutters (USCG Steadfast and Alert). In recognition of the local partnership forged between the Coast Guard and our communities, Astoria was honored by being named an Official Coast Guard City, one of only 16 in the U.S. – only a handful of which are on the West Coast.

Our friend Captain Gray would also be happy to see that Astoria and Warrenton have not lost sight of its history. While our waterfronts are no longer lined with salmon canneries, we have tried very hard to maintain the character of our two cities. We have done a great job of preserving our past so it can be enjoyed in the future by both locals and our guests. Our waterfront is still looked upon as a working waterfront and we are happy to share it with the world, as evidenced by the investment both cities have made in the beautiful walking paths hugging the “Great River of the West,” as well as having our very own historic trolley, “Old 300,” running along the Columbia River from one end of town to the other, being enjoyed by 40,000+ visitors each year. A leisurely stroll through Astoria’s Downtown Historic District leaves no doubt that both historic preservation and a unique and wonderful shopping experience can definitely co-exist and even become a focal point for the entire town. History is indeed alive in the Astoria-Warrenton area and it’s just one of the reasons 19 large cruise ships are scheduled to call on Astoria in 2015. With more than 600 historic buildings, three national historic districts, 40 locations listed on the National Register of Historic Places, our own Lewis & Clark National Historical Park and dozens of museums or other historic landmarks, we not only preserve history, we live it. I guess you could say that as the oldest American settlement west of the Rocky Mountains: WE ARE HISTORY.

It is my belief that the great explorer, Captain Robert Gray (Captain Bob to his friends) would be very pleased with how the people of Astoria and Warrenton have protected his investment. We take great pride in how we have nurtured, cared for, loved and shared his discovery. The Mighty Columbia still runs clean, strong and full of life; our forests are healthy, well-managed and productive; our environment is the envy of many; our children are well-educated; and diversity is an action word in our communities, not just a dream. I have been fortunate to live, work and raise my children in Astoria for all of my 70 years and can honestly say that there is no place on earth that I would rather live.

As you can probably tell, we are very proud of Astoria and Warrenton and nothing makes us happier than sharing that pride with good friends like you. Whether you are looking to relocate your family, your business or simply spending a few days enjoying our area – you are SO welcome. If you just happen to be looking for a place to work from home, think about how great it would be to work from our home. Should you have any questions about our area, please feel free to give me a call at the Chamber (503-325-6311) where working with our guests is not only our job, it’s our passion.

Skip Hauke
Executive Director
Astoria-Warrenton Chamber of Commerce

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