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Annual Street Dance a success

Hundreds gathered in Old Town West Linn on Saturday for the annual event, which featured music by The Touchables.


TIDINGS PHOTO: VERN UYETAKE - Revelers enjoy the annual Street Dance on Saturday evening.West Linn’s annual Street Dance was a hit as hundreds converged Saturday evening on Old Town West Linn for food, music, and fun. The event, which began in 1960, was revived in 2008 after a hiatus of several decades. The Dance has since become a celebrated community event. This year featured acts as diverse as The Youth Music Project Band, juggling, Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue’s Pipes and Drums group, and The Touchables.

Barbara and Jim Mixer, who have come to the Street Dance every year since its revival in 2008, were especially excited to hear the Pipes and Drums group. “They’re very, very good!” said Barbara Mixer, who used to play the bagpipes herself.

TIDINGS PHOTO: VERN UYETAKE - Bradley and Sabrina Shattuck relax while taking in the festivities at West Linns annual Street Dance July 11. Jim Mixer noted that this year’s dance drew the largest crowd they had seen at the event and his wife attributed the turnout to the relatively cool weather, with the high temperature being in the low eighties for the first time in weeks.

Tim Birr, a firefighter and founding member of the Pipes and Drums group, said that the group was invited to play at the event after moving their primary practice location to Tualatin Valley Fire and Rescue Station 59, which was several hundred yards east of the dance. “The guys at the station are obviously very involved in the neighborhood, and they got asked if some of us would come out and play,” said Birr.

The group has performed at other community events in West Linn, but this year’s dance was their first.

“I think it’s fantastic,” Birr said.

Andrea Bourbonnais came to the dance for the first time with her husband and their two children, aged two and three. “We’ve lived here for seven or eight years, and thought it was about time to bring our kids down to a community event,” Bourbonnais said. She especially enjoyed the Youth Project and said that her family was also excited to see The Touchables perform.TIDINGS PHOTO: JAKE BARTMAN - The band the Touchables entertained the crowd with its mix of old time favorites.

At around eight o’ clock, The Touchables took to the stage and delighted listeners with renditions of classic tunes like “She Loves You,” “Twist and Shout,” “I’m a Believer,” “La Bamba” and “I Fought the Law.” It wasn’t long before the Dance proved worthy of its name, as audience members young and old took to the street with friends and loved ones to rock and roll along with the music.

“I think it’s awesome for the city to have such a safe event to bring all of the neighbors out,” said Jeff Williamson, whose restaurant B.J. Willy’s is one of the dance’s sponsors. “It’s a great event.”

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