Seaside, Oregon: Check out this page to realize that the Trail's End Marathon runner should not come to Seaside alone. The city has all the usual oceanside tourist amenities for the entire family as well as an extremely affordable Nike Outlet store. Wading in the Pacific Ocean, walking along the beach, strolling down the promenade, visiting the Seaside Aquarium, and cruising through the numerous shops make for an excellent family outing.

Seaside is a city in Clatsop County, Oregon, United States. The name Seaside is derived from Seaside House, a historic summer resort built in the 1870s by railroad magnate Ben Holladay. The city's population was 5,900 at the 2000 census.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 4.0 square miles (10.4 km²), of which, 3.9 square miles (10.0 km²) of it is land and 0.2 square miles (0.4 km²) of it (3.99%) is water.

Seaside lies on the edge of the Pacific Ocean, at the southern end of the Clatsop Plains, about 29 km (18 mi) south of where the Columbia River empties into the Pacific. The Necanicum River bisects the town and flows out to the ocean at the northern edge of town. Tillamook Head towers over the south edge of town.


  • Seaside has two major highways, U.S. Route 101 and U.S. Route 26.
  • Seaside is served by an intercity bus system.
  • Seaside Municipal Airport
  • Seaside is currently working on a Transportation System Plan (TSP). It will serve as the transportation element of the City of Seaside’s Comprehensive Plan. The TSP will describe how the transportation network in Seaside is being used now and how it is expected to be used in the future (in 2030). TSPs need to be developed according to the State of Oregon’s Transportation Planning Rule. At the end of the project, the recommended improvements will be consistent with the Clatsop County TSP and the Oregon Highway Plan.


Seaside after sunset.

Historical populations
Est. 20076,219

As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 5,900 people, 2,656 households, and 1,511 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,529.4 people per square mile (590.2/km²). There were 4,078 housing units at an average density of 1,057.1/sq mi (407.9/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 93.08% White, 0.34% African American, 0.98% Native American, 1.07% Asian, 0.29% Pacific Islander, 2.17% from other races, and 2.07% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 6.46% of the population. 14.6% were of German, 13.1% English, 11.9% Irish, 9.5% American and 5.1% Norwegian ancestry according to Census 2000. There were 2,656 households out of which 25.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 39.6% were married couples living together, 12.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 43.1% were non-families. 35.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 14.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.17 and the average family size was 2.76.

In the city the population was spread out with 21.4% under the age of 18, 8.4% from 18 to 24, 26.0% from 25 to 44, 25.1% from 45 to 64, and 19.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 41 years. For every 100 females there were 90.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 86.5 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $31,074, and the median income for a family was $40,957. Males had a median income of $29,400 versus $21,913 for females. The per capita income for the city was $17,893. About 11.6% of families and 15.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 25.2% of those under age 18 and 11.4% of those age 65 or over.


The Gilbert House in Seaside

About January 1, 1806, a group of men from the Lewis and Clark Expedition built a salt-making cairn at the present site of Seaside. The Native American name for the Clatsop village near the cairn was Ne-co-tat. The town was incorporated on February 17, 1899.[5]

In 1912, Alexandre Gilbert (1843–1932) was elected Mayor of Seaside. Gilbert was a French immigrant, a veteran of the Franco Prussian War. After living in San Francisco, California and Astoria, Oregon, Gilbert moved to Seaside where he had a beach cottage (built in 1885). Gilbert was a real estate developer who donated land to the City of Seaside for its one and a half mile long Promanade, or "Prom," along the Pacific beach.

In 1892 he added to his beach cottage. The Gilbert House, since the mid 1980's operated commercially as the Gilbert Inn, still stands at Beach Drive and A Avenue. Gilbert's "Gilbert Block" office building on Broadway also survives.

Gilbert died at home in Seaside and is interred in Ocean View Abbey Mausoleum in Warrenton, Oregon.

Tourism, events and points of interest

Seaside is a common tourist destination for residents of the Portland area. The city's population grows in the summer, particularly during some of the large events and festivals that Seaside hosts. There is an annual volleyball tournament held every August that draws thousands of competitors and participants. Seaside is the destination for the Hood to Coast relay race and Portland to Coast relay walk, which also take place in August.[6] The Seaside Three-Course Challenge, a cross country race, is hosted by Seaside High School and held every fall at Fort Rilea, near Seaside and south of Warrenton.

Seaside hosts Muscle ‘N Chrome, Wheels ‘N Waves, and Bikefest. These annual events draw large crowds from the area and are publicized around town. Seaside also has a bi-annual Wine event, where local and regional wineries come to provide free or low cost samples of their wines in an evening full of music, food and visiting all up and down Broadway.

ART AND CULTURE An artwalk is held the first Saturday of each month with featured artists available at galleries, shops and restaurants. These events are sponsored by the Seaside Chamber of Commerce, who prints and distributes monthly maps of the participating artists and where they are showing. There are several art galleries in town, mostly located on Broadway, the main shopping street of downtown Seaside. Other smaller galleries and the Trail's End Art Association are in nearby Gearhart, a quaint town just north of Seaside on Hwy 101. These galleries feature local and regional artists of different disciplines, price ranges and represent a variety of mediums. Local artists and events are featured weekly in The Coast Times, a new online magazine based in Seaside. Many local artists also participate in events in Astoria and Cannon Beach. Local and regional authors are featured at Beach Books (across from the Carousel Mall) with book signing events and reading groups. Several books have been written about the area, including coffee-table books and history books. Additional events are available throughout the year to attract tourists and locals.[7]

Seaside also hosts a 4 July celebration which includess a parade, outdoor concerts, with one of the largest fireworks displays on the west coast. The fireworks are presented beach, with thousands of people watching from blankets in the sand.[8]

Every spring, Seaside hosts the Dorchester Conference, a convention of the Oregon Republican Party. This convention was founded in 1964, by then-state representative Bob Packwood as a forum for liberal Republicans, but within the next few years it attracted interest from other Republicans, and in the 1990s was dominated by members of the conservative branch of the party. Over the years the conference has attracted visits from presidential candidates, debates between Republican primary candidates, and discussions of wider political and social issues.[9]

Seaside is home to the Seaside Aquarium, featuring living regional marine life, a hands-on discovery center, and a 35-foot Gray Whale skeleton, all within a short walk from the Lewis & Clark monument.[10]

Murals adorn several buildings throughout Seaside, depicting history, marine life, and life in Seaside.[11]

The Miss Oregon Pageant, the official state finals to Miss America takes place annually at the Seaside Civic and Convention Center.

At the end of Broadway, Seaside's main street, lies "The Turnaround." It is a roundabout designed to turn traffic around when the street dead ends at the Pacific Ocean. In the middle of "The Turnaround" stands a statue of Lewis and Clark. The statue signifies that not only tourists "turn around" in Seaside, but that Lewis and Clark turned again for home, and their report to fellow Albemarle, Virginia resident Thomas Jefferson, when they reached the Pacific Ocean.

The annual Salt Maker’s Return is held in August. The themed event celebrates Seaside history as the site where the Lewis and Clark expedition took five men nearly two months to make the equivalent of 28 gallons of salt necessary to preserve meat for the winter and their journey home.[12]