Timber Days highlights Priest River’s colorful history

By Scout Anatricia
Reader Intern

In honor of the town’s history, Priest River is holding the annual Timber Days celebration, downtown on High Street, on July 24 and 25. And there’s even more reason to turn out this year, considering it’s the 25th anniversary of the event.

The celebration kicks off on Friday at 7 p.m. with a Hot Neon Nights car cruise downtown. The festivities are continued and multiplied the next day with activities for all ages.

Skip breakfast at home and attend the huckleberry pancake breakfast from 7-11 a.m. Along with the pancake breakfast is the Run for Berries, in which participants can choose either a one- or five- mile run. The breakfast and run are sponsored by Priest River Rotary as well as the Priest River Spartan Booster Club.

Following the huckleberry-themed morning is the opening of the booths at 8 a.m. and a parade through downtown at 11 a.m.

The locally renowned logging competition starts with preliminaries at 9 a.m. and continues from 1-4 p.m. Competitors of both sexes across a 60-year age span jockey for a victory. The logging competition consists of many events such as the Jack-n-Jill, open hot saw, women’s underhand, women’s single buck, axe throw, standing block, single buck, modified hot saw, springboard and underhand. This competition draws the most spectators and even had press from the east coast covering it in 2009. And the journalists weren’t the only travelers—competitors from as far away as California and Wisconsin tried their hand at the North Idaho logging competition.

Directly after the judging of the logging contest is the lawnmower race on Main Street, which should also be a big hit. The Big Back-in Custom Lawnmower Races are back for the 13th year and all proceeds go to the parks and recreation department of the hosting city. Following the Priest River race is the Ponderay race on August 15 at 11 a.m. and the Old Town race on August 22 at 11 a.m.  To participate, the contestant must sign up at least three hours prior.

Wrapping up the night is a street dance that will be fun for the whole family. The event is sponsored by the Asphalt Angels in front of Action Auto at 7 p.m.

Along with all of the festivities, there is a Bull of the Woods award plaque each year for someone who has dedicated time in the timber industry and someone who also stands out as a role model in the community. This year’s plaque will be awarded to Mike Reynolds. Great job, Mike!

Priest River Timber Days is a free event and it takes place on High Street one block down from Highway 2. Everyone is encouraged to attend!

Priest River Chamber of Commerce is hosting the logging competition and lawnmower race, so, if you are interested in participating in any of the events, be sure to sign-up by calling the Priest River Chamber of Commerce at 208-448-2721.

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