Live, drive-thru ‘Cinnamon Bear’ musical show at Oaks Park

Bring the family to this historic East Portland venue to watch, and sing along with, a  version of much-loved Holiday show …

Rehearsing numbers from their show, members of the Cocklebur Cowboys Band play and sing songs from their version of the Cinnamon Bear show, on stage at Oaks Amusement Park.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton

The Cinnamon Bear show has been a beloved Holiday tradition here for decades, starting out in 1937 delighting audiences in short, daily episodic radio programs sponsored by the now-defunct Lipman’s Company department store. The radio serial counted down the days until Christmas.

More recently, The Portland Spirit has offered cruises with Cinnamon Bear and friends; but, due to COVID-19 coronavirus concerns, those 2020 events were cancelled.

While the Cinnamon Bear does have the Silver Star – for the moment – he suspects someone will steal it from the Christmas tree, very soon.

However, starting on November 27, The Portland Spirit and Oaks Park teamed up with WebracaDabra Events to present a new, drive-thru Holiday experience, featuring live music by the Cocklebur Cowboys band, and a fanciful story featuring Paddy O’Cinnamon himself, Chipper the Squirrel, and the Big Red Elf.

“The challenges in  putting this show together have been, well, pretty much everything!” remarked co-producer and band member Justin Sheehy, at a dress rehearsal of the show.

Santa Claus somehow misplaced his sleigh, but he magically appears in a puff of smoke to help the Cinnamon Bear.

“But we’ve built the stage, installed professional lighting and sound, and have a trailer for our ‘backstage’ area, so we’re set to go,” Sheehy told East Portland News.

“What people will enjoy is a live musical show that features the traditional storyline of the Cinnamon Bear – recovering the Silver Star to top a Christmas Tree; we tried to stay as true as we could to the original radio play,” Sheehy said. “And, you should expect Santa Claus to make a magical appearance as well!”

It’s a fun time when the Cocklebur Cowboys are joined by the Cinnamon Bear and Santa Claus during this year’s drive-thru live show at Oaks Amusement Park.

Guests will watch the show from their vehicles, parked near the stage – and the sound is broadcast to the FM stereo radio inside your car. Holiday treats, beverages, and merchandise are available for purchase during the show, which runs about 90 minutes, including intermissions.

The show runs Thursday through Sunday in the early evenings, through December 31. Tickets must be purchased online in advance; no on-site tickets are available.

For all the information you need about this unique Holiday event – including dates, showtimes, and other important information – visit the Oaks Amusement Park website: CLICK HERE.

Spoiler alert! The Cinnamon Bear finds the Silver Star, just in time to save Christmas!

© 2020 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News™


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