Independence Day doesn’t just have to be a one-day midweek celebration. Certainly not if you live within driving distance of Florence, Oregon. This year, come to Oregon’s Coastal Playground for a super-memorable long weekend.

In fact, we recommend you make it a four- to five-day weekend in Florence. There’s an unbelievable number of things to do.

Following Thursday’s Independence Day celebrations in Florence you can ride the dunes on a sandboard, an ATV, or a sandrail (souped-up dune buggy with a thrill-making professional driver). You can go play on mile after mile of uncrowded ocean beaches, search tide pools, and lounge along the Siuslaw River or any of more than a dozen lakes within a dozen miles of town.

Historic Old Town Florence offers hours of leisurely entertainment in its Siuslaw Pioneer Museum, fascinating art galleries, quaint shops, excellent restaurants and coffee houses, and food-and-drink joints with live music or karaoke in the evenings. Nearby is the Siuslaw Military History Museum. The Darlingtonia Botanical Wayside is home to thousands of carnivorous plants, but don’t worry…they eat bugs, not people!

But…on Saturday, July 6…is the event worth waiting for: the annual Wings and Wheels classic airplane and car show. The event takes place from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at the Florence Municipal Airport, 2000 Kingwood St. Registration for the exhibiting vehicles, which is kinda cool to watch, begins at 7:00 a.m. In fact, if you have a classic car of your own to show off, bring it in time for registration!

The event’s organizers say this is one of the most entertaining classic car and airplane shows in Oregon.

In addition to more than 100 really cool classic American and European cars and hotrods, including the Central Oregon Coast British Car Club, there are many antique and hotrod airplanes, meticulously restored military vehicles, WWII Hellcat and AT-6 Texan Trainer aircraft, helicopter displays (including a US Coast Guard Rescue ‘copter), radio-controlled aircraft demonstrations, and first responder displays from Florence police and Siuslaw Fire and Rescue.

You can even ride in a classic 1944 Stearman PT-13D trainer or the AT-6 Texan military airplanes for a fee.

Of course no event is complete without great food, drink, and live music. This year music is provided by the rollicking rocking band “Back in Time.”

Wings & Wheels in Florence gives you hours of exhibitions, food, live music, and more than 20 local and regional groups with displays and activities for the whole family. Parking is $2 and helps fund the Siuslaw High School wrestling team.

One other interesting fact, the 10th annual edition of this awesome car show and fly-in is now known as The Mike Groshong Memorial Wings and Wheels Show and is named for its late founder, organizer, and enthusiastic classic car buff. Mike’s passion shows through in every aspect of this very cool event.

For more information, visit To book a great room for this great event (just a three-minute drive from our inn) call our front desk at 541-997-3933 or click here.


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