Progress Days to look different this year

Jul 6, 2020

Credit Shaylon Cochran/KDLL

Soldotna’s annual Progress Days event is going forward—sort of.

Progress Days usually involves a big parade, weekend market, and live music in Soldotna Creek Park on the fourth weekend of July to mark the founding of Soldotna and its ongoing progress. Big events are not really on the up and up right now, so the Soldotna Chamber of Commerce has released details of how it plans to mark the occasion in the time of coronavirus.

The Soldotna Chamber of Commerce is calling it a “Soldotna Strong” themed event and will focus on strengthening local businesses on Wednesday, July 22. Instead of being on a weekend, the Progress Days event will link up with the weekly Wednesday Market in Soldotna Creek Park, which has recently received the green light from Soldotna City Council to keep going in the park this summer.

There will also be a new event: A Soldotna-wide scavenger hunt, called the “Amazing Chamber Chase.” The first twenty teams of at least four people can sign up and figure out clues together to find the items in the hunt. Cars are allowed, but all the clues are within a mile and half of the park. Teams are encouraged to dress up and can sign up on the Chamber’s website by July 17.

Starting July 9, the chamber will launch a shop local campaign as well, offering stamp cards in participating local businesses. Each $10 spent at a participating store earns a stamp, and once a customer has spent $100 for ten stamps, they will be entered to win a $500 gift card. Businesses can sign up for $50 by July 7, according to the chamber.

Progress Days is usually the Soldotna Chamber of Commerce’s main event for the summer, though Music in the Park has become its other mainstay in the past few years. The Soldotna City Council members expressed concern about allowing the concerts to go forward, though, given the large number of people that have gathered for them in the past, and hashed out the city’s policy for large events this summer, largely focusing on avoiding live music. The chamber worked with the city on the modified plans for Progress Days, according to the newsletter.

Reach Elizabeth Earl at eearl@kdll.org.