Childhood memories are being brought back to life as Lincoln City kicks off the summer with a festival dedicated to the iconic Pixie Kitchen Restaurant and Pixieland Theme Park. On June 24 and 25, the magic of childhood returns at Pixiefest, featuring food, entertainment and kiddie rides inspired by the original Pixie experience. Pixiefest will rise next door to Chinook Winds Casino Resort and be hosted by the Kiwanis Club of Lincoln City.
All proceeds from the event will go to child centered causes in Lincoln City, including Backpacks for Kids, Girl and Boy Scouts, scholarships and more. Pixiefest organizers said the response from the community has been strong. Chinook Winds Casino Resort, in addition to providing the space for Pixiefest, is also sponsoring the games and kiddie rides, plus serving up drinks in a salute to Pixie Kitchen’s Shell Room, complete with a mermaid enticing you to enter.
Theatre West has stepped up to re-create the melodrama show that was a mainstay at Pixieland. The stage itself is sponsored by Lincoln City Outlets. McMenamins will be there to re-create Pixie Kitchen chowder, and other food vendors are being lined up to serve memories from recipes being researched by the Lincoln City Culinary Center.
The North Lincoln County Historical Museum has made the museum’s Pixie Kitchen and Pixieland collection available for reference and reproduction. The museum has also launched a Pixie Memories oral history project, collecting memories of Pixie Kitchen and Pixieland from 2 to 4 p.m. every Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday.
Lincoln City Graphics has joined as a partner to create theming elements: recreations of the plywood cutout characters that populated Pixie Kitchen. Kip Ward, owner of the Historic Anchor Inn, has made his personal collection of Pixie memorabilia available to the festival, including two original whale boat ride cars from Pixieland.
Kiwanis member and Pixiefest Volunteer Coordinator Susan Wahlke they still need a few good Pixies as they are going to have Pixies throughout the event and need volunteers to don pixie ears and have fun with the guests. They also need help from everyone from restaurant owners to crafters in bringing Pixiefest to life.
“But, we’re not out of the woods, yet, Kiwanis member and vendor coordinator Boone Marker said.
Applications for food, merchandise and craft vendors are available at the Lincoln City Chamber of Commerce. Call for details at, 541-994-3070.
“Pixiefest is expected to be a powerful marketing tool for Lincoln City,” Lincoln City Visitors & Convention Bureau Director Ed Dreistadt said. “Pixie Kitchen created magic family memories for over 30 years. To this day, it has tremendous brand equity and gives us the opportunity to offer something amazing to long time visitors: a treasured piece of their childhood.”
Pixie Kitchen History
The Pixie Kitchen opened its doors on May 21, 1953, in Wecoma Beach, which is now the northern part of Lincoln City. Owners Jerry and Lu Parks bought the restaurant from former owner T.C. Gallagher, who had called it Pixie Pot Pie. The Parks created a restaurant where families could enjoy an affordable meal and be transported to a magical fairytale land. Special attention was given to children, who were viewed as customers, and were given place mats that folded into pixie hats and candy gifts.
By the 1960s, the restaurant had become a popular tourist spot with the slogan “Heavenly Food on the Oregon Coast.” So much so that an amusement park inspired by the restaurant, called Pixieland, was opened just north of Lincoln City.
Opened in 1969 in the neighboring town of Otis, Pixieland Amusement Park was dedicated to the families of Oregon by Gov. Tom McCall. Keeping in the fairytale theme of the Pixie Kitchen, Pixieland featured a steam locomotive, a log flume ride, and an opera house. Pixieland enjoyed its final season in 1974.
Pixiefest is part of the grand Lincoln City Summer Kickoff, along with the 33rd Annual Summer Kite Festival and the Chinook Winds Casino Resort Anniversary Celebration, all on the weekend of June 24-25.
For more information about Pixiefest, including how to become a volunteer, vendor or sponsor, call 541-996-1274 or visit Pixiefest.com.