Molly Johnson | 05/28/2021 | Podcast

The Story Behind Pickathon

During the eighth episode of our podcast series Territory Tales, we got a glimpse into the mind of Zale Schoenborn, founder of the incredibly popular and unique outdoor music festival, Pickathon!

It was a joy to meet him and learn all that it took to get the festival off the ground over 20 years ago and how this multiday event has evolved over the years.

Zale details how they tried to break the mold of the typical festival when starting, how they evolved to maintain their mission with changing demands, and why musicians essentially line up to perform at the one-of-a-kind venue in Happy Valley, Oregon. The elaborate transformation that happens at the Pendarvis Farm, where the festival is held, is unlike anything your dreams could conjure up. The team and volunteers, work tirelessly to build absolutely incredible stages, dwelling areas and an atmosphere that leaves you feeling transported into another realm. 

He discusses their ethos that guides the direction of all the choices they make, including how they eliminated single-use plastic items, incorporated washing stations to allow for reusable items and how they put the emphasis on the experience for the attendees and the artists over any other factor. 

Pickathon is an absolute gem in Mt. Hood Territory, and we hope this episode sheds some pixie dust-enhanced light on why. 

Related Content: Pickathon Music Festival Returns for 21st Year

Molly Johnson grew up in Mt. Hood Territory and loves getting to write content inspiring others to visit her beloved home. 

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