Photo Credit: CONTRIBUTED PHOTO - Milo McIver State Park will celebrate the 44th anniversary of Vortex I, a  week-long state-sponsored rock festival and hippie gathering with a commemoration event on Aug. 9.In 1970, the only state-sponsored rock festival in U.S. history was held at Milo McIver State Park in an effort to divert potentially violent anti-war protests during the American Legion's annual conference in downtown Portland, where President Richard Nixon was scheduled to speak.

(Nixon wound up canceling.)

Vortex I drew crowds of hippies, and, according to a press release issued by Milo McIver State Park, “Oregon law enforcement averted its gaze as public nudity and drug use was permitted for this week long state-sanctioned event.”

Milo McIver State Park will commemorate Vortex I’s 44th anniversary Aug. 9 at the Vortex Meadow.

Scheduled features and events include:

  • A Vortex photography exhibit, noon to 4 p.m.

  • Family friendly activities such as tie dye, mandala making, hula hooping and a drum circle, noon to 4 p.m.

    n An introduction by Matt Love, author of “The Far Out Story of Vortex I,” 12:30 p.m.

  • A walking tour of Vortex Meadow led by Love,12:45 p.m.

  • Live 1970s acoustic music, 1 p.m.

  • A walking tour of Vortex Meadow led by Love, 1:30 p.m.

  • A panel discussion with key Vortex figures, 2 p.m.

  • Live 1970s acoustic music, 2:30 p.m.

  • A historical reenactment of Gov. Tom McCall’s visit to Vortex I, 3:30 p.m.

    Anyone with photos from Vortex I is invited to bring them to the commemoration event where they will be scanned and returned on the spot.

    Volunteers will record video footage of anyone willing to share their experience of the 1970 event.

    All media derived from the commemoration event will be shared with the Estacada Public Library.

    The event is free and open to the public, but a $5 Oregon State Park parking pass is required for each vehicle.

    Donations from the event go toward installing a plaque commemorating the historical, social and cultural importance of Vortex I.

    For more information call Mark Shaw at 503-887-3160.

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