Sunday, September 12, 2010
Nye Beach, historically, is one of the finest vacation spots on the Oregon Coast. For over 100 years, people from Portland and the Willamette Valley have been coming to this favorite place to seek solace in and alongside the waters of the Pacific Ocean.
In times past, cottages were built where women and children would spend their summers while the men of the families would join them for the weekend excursions at the beautiful expansive Nye Creek. In 1891, a boardwalk was built connecting the areas of Nye Creek and the Newport Bayfront. This boardwalk was replaced by a road two years later.
Nye Beach from early on became a popular area for summer college classes which were held in a specially-built auditorium. In 1902, Dr. Minthorn (stepfather of President Herbert Hoover) built a sanitarium east of what is now the Sylvia Beach Hotel. In this sanitarium, hot sea water baths were available, as well as small dressing rooms which were used for changing into street clothes after cavorting in the surf.
A favorite place in Nye Beach during the first half of the century was the Natatorium. The first one burned, but a second building was constructed housing a swimming pool and dance hall. A movie theatre and bowling alley were close-by. This structure was on the grounds now used at the plenty of free parking area of the Nye Beach Turnaround.
During WWII, patriots carrying rifles and using dogs patrolled the beach area to keep the country safe from invasion.
A place to escape from the trials of the day has always been a secret of Nye Beach. Today, as a century ago, this colorful seaside community provides the same charm and beauty in a warm, friendly village of shops, services, guest accommodations and which also features a clear, near activist focus on the arts.