May 28, 2005
The Port of Cascade Locks threw a party on Thursday evening to show off its newly remodeled community center.
Invited guests arrived at the Gorge Pavilion to enjoy the festivities which included gourmet food, spirits, and live music from Retta Christie and the Jazz Trio. They also came to admire the elegant look of the 3,000 square foot circular structure in Port Marine Park.
“This used to be an open picnic shelter and we were getting a lot of vandalism — particularly from birds — so we thought we’d secure it,” said Chuck Daughtry, port executive director.
He said once the doors and window went into place, the port began to see the “possibilities” for a grander project. So, a $40,000 investment was made to install knotty pine on the vaulted ceiling and ambient light fixtures. The cement floor was given a marble look and both an in-house sound system and energy-efficient air conditioning units were added for the comfort of guests.
Daughtry said the facility officially debuted at an historical and highly publicized event — the April 6 signing of the casino compact between Gov. Ted Kulongoski and the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs. When more than 200 people fit into the building without difficulty, he knew that the vision for a community center had been successful.
“What a great way to introduce this building,” said Daughtry. “We really wanted to provide a place where people could meet year-round, regardless of the weather.”
The next phase of the project will be to add restrooms later this year. Currently, the port has made portable facilities available at the rear of the facility — or guests can walk over to the park’s visitor center. The port also plans to install a wet bar that is shaped like the bow of a boat to compliment the sternwheeler.
Daughtry said the riverside location of the pavilion is the perfect venue for weddings, dances, banquets, meetings, reunions and any other special occasion. He said the location of the pavilion is prime because it is sited near a new playground, also depicting the sternwheeler theme, and the paddlewheel replica’s dock. So, Daughtry said there are things of interest for people of all ages to do and see in the park.
“This is just an inviting building and we think that it will become a popular gathering place,” he said.
For more information on rental rates for the pavilion call Casey Roeder at 374-2408 or e-mail her office at email@example.com.