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Bits and Pieces

The ol' oyster buster

Portland has been known for its wackiness, but it gets even wackier Aug. 20 with the Oyster Urban Adventure Race, ranked as one of the top five summer events by Colorado's Adventurous 500. It's similar to the TV show 'Amazing Race,' but conducted by foot and bike on one day in Portland, requiring thought-provoking strategy to solve Portland-specific clues along with athleticism.

The race, founded in Denver in 2003, was originally called the 'Rocky Mountain Ball Buster,' taken from the novelty dish 'Rocky Mountain Oysters' - otherwise known as fried bull's testicles. It has grown to be held in 11 cities.

For information and registration, go to www.oysterracingseries.com.

Symphony rebounds

The 2011-12 Oregon Symphony season begins Sept. 1 with its annual Willamette River waterfront concert.

And, the folks with the symphony couldn't be happier about how last season went. Despite the recession slowing all arts, paid attendance went up by six percent for the past season symphony events, selling 70 percent of capacity.

'We've been working to better match audience demand and performance supply in a couple of ways,' says Elaine Calder, symphony president.

Calder points out that the Oregon Symphony's appearance at New York's Carnegie Hall proved that 'audiences here in Portland are being treated to performances by one of the finest orchestras in the country.'

Movie time

Free 'Movies in the Park' continues into September. Here's the lineup for the next 10 days (party starts at 6:30 p.m.):

Aug. 12 - 'Gamara vs. Guiron,' Sewallcrest; Filmusik performs live soundtrack and dialogue

Aug. 13 - 'James and the Giant Peach,' Dickinson

Aug. 17 - 'Back to the Future,' Colonel Summers

Aug. 18 - 'Toy Story 3,' Woodstock

Aug. 19 - 'Rango,' Irving

Aug. 20 - 'How to Train Your Dragon,' Warner Pacific College

Aug. 20 ‚ 'The Karate Kid' (2010), Knott

Aug. 21 - 'Iron Man 2,' Lents

Arts fest

The ninth annual Arts Festival in the Forest, set for 10 a.m. Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 13 and 14 at Mary S. Young Park in West Linn, features 75 juried local and regional artists in fine crafted jewelry, unique garden art, sculptures, painting, photography, textiles and more. There'll also be food and music.

Disc winners

Portland resident Lori Daniels won the women's title in the recent World Flying Disc Federation championships in Fort Collins, Colo. Daniels has been flying discs since 1981, and won the WFDF women's title for the first time.

Milwaukie's Matt Gauthier and Lisa Hunrichs, the latter the subject of a Portland Tribune feature story two years ago, won first place in open division freestyle.

Daniels also partnered with Bethany Sanchez, finishing second in women's freestyle. Jake Gauthier of Portland and James Wiseman placed third in open division freestyle.

The four locals are preparing for the Freestyle Players Association World Championships in Prague, Czech Republic, Aug. 10-13. For more info, go to www.freestyledisc.org.