WEEKEND: RainFest celebrates children, art, nature for two weeks in Forks
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Lonnie Archibald/for Peninsula Daily News
Alyna Centeno of Forks puts the final touches on her umbrella for 2013's RainFest parade.

Peninsula Daily News

FORKS — The annual RainFest celebration has been expanded this year into two weeks of activities beginning this weekend with a film festival and the Umbrella Parade leading up to the groundbreaking for the Rainforest Art Center.

Next weekend will feature the Fabric of the Forest quilt show and the West End Art League show.

The theme for this weekend is River and Ocean Days, a celebration of the arts and environment in the heart of the rainforest.

The Marine Resource Committee approached the West End Council of the Arts to work with it in this year's festival, said Carl Chastain, one of the organizers of this year's RainFest, as well as executive director of the Pacific Coast Salmon Coalition and president of the West Olympic Council for the Arts.

“Most of artists in the Northwest are tremendously influenced by salmon and the marine environment, so it seemed like a natural pairing,” Chastain said.

The RainFest began with a Quileute drum circle at LaPush on Wednesday. On Thursday, JT's Sweet Stuffs in Forks hosted a display of art by Forks High School students with the high school jazz band providing musical accompaniment.

Saturday activities

Much of Saturday's celebration revolves around the Washington Coast Cleanup, which anticipates Earth Day on Tuesday, and the groundbreaking for the Rainforest Art Center in downtown Forks.

Washington Coast Cleanup activities will begin at 7:30 a.m. Saturday. For information, visit www.coastsavers.org.

At 10 a.m. until noon, children can paint and decorate umbrellas at the Forks extension of Peninsula College at 71 S. Forks Ave.

“We have umbrellas we buy and provide paint and other things that kids can affix to umbrellas to decorate them any way they want,” Chastain said.

At least 100 participated in the parade last year. Chastain expects more this year.

The umbrellas will be twirled and, if the weather is wet, used for cover as the children parade at noon down the sidewalk of Forks Avenue — also known as U.S. Highway 101 — to the site of the new Rainforest Art Center at 61 N. Forks Ave., at the corner of Division Street and Highway 101.

Groundbreaking

There, children will dig some 60 shovels into the earth to break the ground for the new center in a ceremony planned from 12:10 p.m. to 12:40 p.m. before heading up to Tillicum Park at 325 Tillicum Lane for an Easter egg hunt offering some 1,850 eggs for them to find.

The $2.1 million arts center will replace the building that burned in October 2012.

The egg hunt will be from 1 p.m. to 1:30 p.m.

Once they've filled their baskets with eggs, children can go to JT's Sweet Stuffs at 80 N. Forks Ave. to make sidewalk chalk art from 1 p.m. to 1:30 p.m.

If it is raining, they can draw on panels of paper in JT's back room, Chastain said.

Despite Forks' record of some 10 feet a year, “strangely enough, it's almost sunny on [RainFest] weekend.” Chastain said.

“But I don't think it will be this year at all,” he predicted.

From 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. will be the RainFest Swap Meet at the Forks Elks Lodge at 941 Merchants Road.

Film festival

The River and Ocean Film Festival and displays are planned Saturday night in the Forks High School commons at 261 Spartan Ave.

Doors will open at 6 p.m. Films will begin at 7 p.m.

The festival will feature short films that highlight the beauty and opportunity of the “wet side” of the Olympic Peninsula while raising awareness of challenges faced by its aquatic life and human communities.

Admission is free and open to all, and films are family-friendly.

The lineup includes:

■ “The Wild Olympic Coast,” Florian Graner at Sea Life Productions.

■ “Tides of Change,” Silver Fir Media.

■ “Marine Spatial Planning on the Washington Coast,” Swell Productions.

■ “This is Where I Belong,” Stony Point Pictures.

■ “Cape Flattery Beach Clean-up,” Dave Forcucci.

The festival is sponsored by Washington Sea Grant, North Pacific Coast Marine Resource Committee, North Pacific Coast Lead Entity, Pacific Coast Salmon Coalition and the West Olympic Council of the Arts.

For more information about the film festival, visit www.tinyurl.com/PDN-RiverOceanFilmFest.

Easter breakfast

On Easter Sunday, the Forks Emblem Club and Concerned Citizens will host a breakfast at the Forks Elks Lodge at 941 Merchants Road from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m.

The buffet will include ham, sausage, biscuits and gravy, scrambled eggs, hashbrowns, pancakes, french toast, juice and coffee.

The cost is $7 for those 12 and older, $5 for seniors and children from 5 to 11, and free for children 4 and younger.

The second weekend of RainFest, beginning Friday, April 25, and continuing through Sunday, April 27, will feature classes and a quilt show provided by the Piecemaker Quilt Club and an art show by the West End Art League.

Last modified: April 17. 2014 7:27PM
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