Join Menucha Saturday for all-day croquet and centennial celebration

by: CONTRIBUTED PHOTO: MENUCHA RETREAT AND CONFERENCE CENTER - First Presbyterian church member Janet Starosciak and Cynthia Winter of Corbett watch Corbett's Sarah Van Haeften hit a hard one at Menucha's annual croquet tournament.Wear your best “whites” and fancy hats and join Menucha for its seventh annual International Croquet Tournament and Centennial Celebration on Saturday, July 19, in Corbett.

“The croquet tournament is a hoot,” said Lauren Deming, Menucha’s marketing director.

The event will run from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at Menucha Retreat and Conference Center, 38711 E. Historic Columbia River Highway.

Tickets are $40 for participants and $15 for spectators. Children 6 and younger get in free.

Deming said the croquet tournament started after a few frequently visiting artists requested to do something a little more laid back than the fancy dinner fundraiser Menucha hosts in September.

“Since we’ve got lots of lawns, croquet seemed a good choice,” Deming said.

Guests can enjoy live bluegrass music throughout the day Saturday and coffee, juice and pastries will be served during registration.

Lunch prepared by Menucha staff will be served by the pool overlooking the Columbia River Gorge.

Menucha staff says this friendly croquet competition is fun for the whole family and all skill levels are welcome.

Those interested may come to play croquet or bring a lawn chair and cheer on players as a spectator.

New this year, participants may play solo or on a two-person team.

Trophies will be awarded to winners of both.

At the event, there will also be games for little kids, a silent auction, a prize for “Best Dressed for Croquet” and rare Menucha memorabilia on display for its 100th birthday.

Tournament proceeds will go toward “the greening of Menucha,” such as new insulation and energy efficient windows and light fixtures for the historic estate.

In 1914, Julius Meier of Meier & Frank department stores, purchased the gorge property nestled among towering trees on a lofty bluff, and began building his family’s country estate.

However, the property’s history dates back much further, just ask Menucha staff.

Meier named his estate Menucha, which is the Hebrew word translated as “still” as in the phrase “still waters.”

One hundred years later, First Presbyterian Church of Portland and owners of Menucha keep the property open to the public as a place of refuge and retreat for the thousands of visitors who come to stay every year.

Order your tickets for Saturday’s croquet tournament online at, or call the Menucha office at 503-695-2243.

Menucha asks that participants purchase tickets in advance.

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