Organ Crawl

The ninth biennial Organ Crawl returns to The Dalles April 16. Pictured is event founder Robert Carsner with the visible pipes of the 1907 Kilgen Organ at St. Peter’s Landmark in 2013. Carsner died in 2014. The Organ Crawl runs from 2-5 p.m. as follows in The Dalles: 2-2:20 p.m., St. Peter’s Landmark (Diana Beterbide); 2:40-3 p.m., UCC Congregational (Cheryl Ortega); 3:20-3:40 p.m., First Church of Christ Scientist (E.J. Howe); 4-4:20 p.m., St. Paul’s Episcopal (Heidi Kohne); 4:40-5 p.m., Zion Lutheran (Garry Estep). 

THE DALLES — It is spring in The Dalles, and this year is an Organ Crawl year!

April 16 is the ninth biennial Organ Crawl, which was started in 2007 by Robert Carsner (1940-2014).

The Dalles boasts five pipe organs, while many larger cities have none anymore, said a press release.

“The preservation and appreciation of the pipe organs here in our fair city has come to the attention of the Portland branch of the American Guild of Organists. And the love we give to these majestic ‘King of Instruments’ continues,” said a press release.

This year’s organ crawl starts at historic St. Peter’s Landmark in downtown The Dalles with Hood River organist Diana Beterbide on the even more historic 1907 Kilgen Organ which has retained its original configuration (except for adding an electric driven blower).

The crawl continues as Cheryl Ortega features the Wicks organ at the United Church of Christ Congregational (corner of Fifth and Court streets).

Next is local organist E.J. Howe playing the Reuter Organ at the First Church of Christ Scientist (701 Washington St.). After that, you will hear Heidi Kohne from Portland (who has been featured in many organ events here in The Dalles over the years) playing the 1905 Kimball organ at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church (1805 Minnesota St.) Finally, you will hear local organist Garry Estep on the 1976 Phelps-d’Autremont organ at Zion Lutheran Church (corner of 10th and Union streets).

A reception will be held at Zion ELCA after the concert is over. Admission is free, and donations go toward continuation of this The Dalles tradition, as well as assisting in the maintenance and upkeep of the instruments.