By News-Register staff • 

Firefighters Dance is back this summer

Tickets are available for the turkey barbecue and Firefighters Dance that will mark the return of some of the traditions of McMinnville’s long-running Turkey Rama festival.

The 21- and-older barbecue and dance will be a one-night event on Friday, July 12, the same weekend Turkey Rama was held for many years. But instead of a street fair, it will focus just on food, music and dancing for ticketholders.

Next year, organizers said, they hope to bring back more Turkey Rama traditions, including, if possible, a carnival. But this year, they want to give local people a reminder of the fun that could be had at the summer festival.

“We want to remind them how community events are about bringing people together,” said Chelsey Nichol, one of the organizers with the McMinnville City Club.

The McMinnville City Club is hosting the event along with the McMinnville Fire Department, its union and volunteers.

The barbecue and street dance will be held on Fourth Street between Ford and Galloway, behind The Bindery Event Space. Admission is $25 for the dance or $40 for both the dinner and the dance.

Starting at 5:30 p.m., a catered meal, with turkey, potato salad and coleslaw, will be served. A bar truck will offer beer, wine, hard seltzer, cider and non-alcoholic beverages.

From 7:30 until about 10 p.m., the dance will feature music by venerable Portland band Johnny Limbo and the Lugnuts, which was a favorite at Turkey Rama firemen’s dances in the past.

Nichol said she is thrilled to have been able to book the local favorite. And the band leader, Jerry Hofmann, aka Johnny Limbo, is happy for the chance to play in McMinnville once more.

“So many fond memories people have” of the dance, which used to be held in Elks Park off Baker Creek Road — now a subdivision, she said.

Volunteers from the McMinnville Fire Department will run the dance. Proceeds will go to the volunteer department and the union.

Tickets are available in advance from a link at For more information, send email to


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