The Great Umpqua Outdoor Days highlights activities over the Labor Day weekend in Douglas County from mountain bike races to history days to art displays.

The Umpqua Economic Development Partnership started the outdoor days in 2018 as a way to bring attention to events in the Umpqua Valley and on the North Umpqua Trail, Event Manager Brittany Arnold said in an email.

“Outdoor Days packaged up a number of events that were already happening around the county in different parts – from coast to mountains – and put it under “Outdoor Days” so that visitors could have an event-packed weekend with a range of activities to partake in,” Arnold said.

On Saturday, Aug. 31, Roseburg will welcome mountain bike riders for Saturday’s highlight event, the N.U.T.Cracker Race. The 53-mile North Umpqua Trail climb is an open race this year. Last year, Mudslinger Events brought in approximately 50 professional riders.

“It had rave reviews,” Arnold said. “The riders found it incredibly challenging, beautiful, and raw.”

Racers and the public are then invited to the Umpqua Bash featuring local beer tastings, barbecue, participant awards and video from the race. The event will start after the ride and be held at Stewart Park in Roseburg. This year the event welcomes the band Roseburg for their West Coast tour launch.

“The Umpqua Bash at Stewart Park was created for a post-race event and award ceremony, but also as a fun event the community can take part in or anyone else visiting for the Outdoor Days events happening,” Arnold said.

More information is available at www.thegreatumpqua.com.

Saturday and Sunday is the 20th annual Fort Umpqua Days at the Elkton Community Education Center. The two-day event goes back in time in the fort to educate visitors on daily life in the early days of Oregon. It also features family-friendly events from the butterfly house to the vegetable stand and other history-themed events. More information is available at www.elktonbutterflies.com

Artists from all over Oregon will be showing their crafts at the annual Art by the Bay Festival in Reedsport on that Saturday and Sunday. Visitors will have a chance to observe styles & skills of potters, painters, carvers, jewelers and more. For more information and to participate call Phyllis Dever at 541-297-6073.

On Sunday, Sept. 1, the Vineyard Tour Bike Ride will take cyclists throughout the most scenic areas of the Umpqua Valley. Sponsored by Umpqua Velo Cycling Club, the ride offers five routes to include all ages and abilities. Bike routes range from 15 miles to 100 miles. Each route uses scenic lightly traveled rural roads that follow the striking Umpqua River. More information is available at www.thevineyardtour.com.

Janelle Polcyn can be reached at jpolcyn@nrtoday.com or 541-957-4204. Or follow her on Twitter @JanellePolcyn.

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Janelle Polcyn is a reporter at The News-Review, graduated from the University of Texas, and is a podcast enthusiast.

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