The 2021 Hoquiam Loggers Playday competition held Saturday, Sept. 11, at Olympic Stadium, as it has for more than half a century, did not disappoint after taking a year off because of COVID-19
A lot of familiar faces were in the competition this year, with mostly local competitors. In the end, Colin Towne was the top local point earner, and Tristan VanBeek took home the all-around logger honors. Full results are below.
The day kicked off with the Hoquiam Elks Grand Parade winding its way through downtown Hoquiam with a variety of entries, including old logging equipment from the Polson Museum and a tribute to first responders who lost their lives during the terror attacks on Sept. 11, 2001. At 2 p.m., the annual Hoquiam Lions Club salmon barbecue sold a lot of fish at the Washington School next door to the competition venue.
The logging competition itself was, as always, fast-paced, fun and loud. There was always something going on with 15 different events happening across the field throughout the competition.
As he has for many years, Ed “Mooch” Smith of Eatonville wowed the crowd with some precision topping, smashing a watermelon with a well-placed cut — splattering longtime emcee Don Bell in the process — before an old Volkswagen Beetle, donated by Norm Callaghan of Gordon’s Service in Hoquiam, was wheeled under the log. Mooch dropped it expertly on the roof of the bug with a satisfying metallic crash.
At the end of the competition the lights went out in the stadium for a spectacular fireworks show, which was followed by a new addition, a laser light music show that spread across the stadium above the bleachers.
Loggers Playday competition results. Contestants are listed in order from first place in each competition.
Open power saw
T.J. Bexten, Michael Pakos, Mike Forrester, Mel Lentz, James Lew
Local ax throw
Lee Pickett, Colin Towne, Cole Sterns, Nicholas Strachota, Stephen Davis
Mel Lentz, David Moses, Trevor Baker, Mike Forrester, T.J. Bexten
Tristan Van Beek, David Moses, T.S. Bexten, Colin Towne, Mel Lentz
Local power saw
Johnny Boggs, Colin Towne, Brett Roberts, Nicholas Strachota, Ben Emond
Johnny Boggs, Nicholas Strachota, Colin Towne, Brady Cummings
David Moses, T.J. Bexten, Mel Lentz, Trevor Baker, Mike Forrester
Open choker setting
Tristan VanBeek, Michael Pakos, Chester Isaacson, Mike Johnson, Drew Adams
Ma and Pa bucking
Mel Lentz and Julie Janke, Tracey Stoken and David Moses, Chester Isaacson and Jessica Karraker, Katie Burnet and Rod Janke, Monica Ewing and Lee Pickett
Ben Emond, Colin Towne, Derek Such, Nicholas Strachota, Johnny Boggs
Tristan VanBeek, Chester Isaacson, Michael Pakos
Tristan VanBeek, Paul Pendergraft, Pat Mahoney, Cole Sterns, Mike Johnson
Local double buck
Colin Tournett and Pat Mahoney, Derek Such and Harry Thayer, Johnny Boggs and Cole Sterns, Nicholas Strachota and Paul Pendergraft, Mickey Huffman and Kris Kain, Bubbles Obermier and Tristan Mefford
Open double buck
Trevor Baker and James Lev, Michael Pakos and Tristan VanBeek, Mel Lentz and Mike Forrester, Mike Johnson and David Moses, Chester Isaacson and Mike Karraker
Tristan Van Beek, Michael Pakos, David Moses, Mike Forrester, Mel Lentz