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2019 Walter P. Chrysler Club Northwest Regional Meet

The 2019 Walter P. Chrysler Club Northwest Regional Meet will be held September 12–14 2019 in scenic and historic Astoria Oregon at the mouth of the Columbia River. We will escape the heat of the interior and instead smell the fresh ocean breezes. Astoria, founded in 1811 by John Jacob Astor’s company, is the oldest American settlement west of the Rocky Mountains. The Lewis and Clark Expedition famously spent the winter of 1805–1806 at Fort Clatsop, a small log structure near modern-day Astoria. Today the fort has been recreated and is now a historical park, which we’ll visit on one of our tours.

Our event starts with the traditional ice cream social on Thursday evening, which is our meet-and-greet to begin the weekend. It will be located at Lum’s Chrysler-Dodge-Jeep in Warrenton, OR. Friday we will have some interesting tours lined up, and for Saturday we will be trying something different this year, we will forgo the traditional car show. Instead we’ll have other fun activities planned - more to be announced. Saturday night will be our banquet.

Please plan on coming to the meet, we'll see lots of sights, have lots of fun, and as usual, wonderful camaraderie. The weather at the Oregon coast is usually delightful in September. Please register and make your hotel reservations now!

Hotel Information:
Astoria Riverwalk Inn
400 Industry St, Astoria OR 97103
Reservations : 503-325-2013
Promo Code "WPC" for group rate of $125.00.

Interesting Facts About Astoria:

In 1792, Capt. Robert Gray found the mouth of the river and sailed in with his ship, the Columbia Rediviva, and named the river after his ship. In 1805, Lewis and Clark led their Expedition here and spent the winter at Fort Clatsop, just south of town. Astoria is the oldest American settlement west of the Rockies, dating from the fur trading post set up by John Jacob Astor’s men in 1811. There’s a small park and a partial replica at the site of the original post at 15th and Exchange. John Jacob Astor never visited Astoria.

The United States and England went to war in 1812. In 1813 a British warship sailed into the Columbia River to capture the post and take control of the fur trade. Astor’s fur traders beat them to the punch by selling the post to the British NorthWest Company. From 1813 to 1818, the British owned Astoria and it was known as Fort George. In 1818, a treaty with England established joint occupation of the Oregon Country, as it was called then. The boundary was set at the 49th Parallel. The British did not completely abandon Astoria until 1846.

Fort Stevens was an American military installation that guarded the mouth of the Columbia River. The fort was an active military reservation from 1863–1947. On June 22, 1942, a Japanese submarine surfaced off Fort Stevens and fired 17 shells at the fort, making it the second military installation in the continental United States to come under enemy fire in World War II. The Japanese attack caused no damage to the fort itself, only the backstop of the post's baseball field being destroyed. Today, Fort Stevens is a State Park.

Astoria's economy centered on fishing, fish processing, and lumber. In 1945, about 30 canneries could be found along the Columbia; however, in 1974, the Bumble Bee Seafoods Corporation moved its headquarters out of Astoria and closed its last Astoria cannery in 1980. The lumber industry likewise declined; Astoria Plywood Mill, the city's largest employer, closed in 1989, and the Burlington Northern and Santa Fe Railway discontinued service to Astoria in 1996.

From 1921 to 1966, a ferry route across the Columbia River connected Astoria with Pacific County, Washington. In 1966, the Astoria–Megler Bridge was opened. The bridge completed U.S. Route 101 and linked Astoria with Washington on the opposite shore of the Columbia, replacing the ferry service.

The Astoria Column was built in 1926. It’s a tower 125 feet high, built atop Coxcomb Hill above the town, with an inner circular staircase allowing visitors to climb to see a panoramic view of the town, the surrounding lands, and the Columbia flowing into the Pacific. The tower was built with financing by the Great Northern Railway and Vincent Astor of the Astor family, the great-grandson of John Jacob Astor, in commemoration of the city's role in the family's business history and the region's early history.

The Columbia River Maritime Museum near downtown Astoria has a national reputation for the quality of its exhibits and the scope of its collections, and was the first museum in Oregon to meet national accreditation standards. There you can discover the stories of the legendary Columbia River Bar, one of the most dangerous passages in the world. The museum houses interactive historical exhibits, and visitors may experience what it is like to pilot a tugboat, participate in a Coast Guard rescue on the Columbia River Bar, and live in Astoria during the height of salmon fishing.

Today there is a vibrant tourism, restaurant and microbrewery scene in Astoria. Most of the quaint buildings in downtown date from the 1920s, having been built after a fire destroyed most of downtown Astoria in 1922.

A hundred years ago, Astoria was the second largest city in Oregon with a population of 8,975. The population now is just over 10,000 people.