National Historic Preservation Month

While every month is historic preservation month for us here at the Deschutes County Historical Society, May is National Historic Preservation Month, a chance to bring awareness to the importance of saving our historic places. Check out our schedule of events for programs happening around Deschutes County.


Downtown Sisters Historic Landmarks Walking Tours
May 1, 5, 15, 26, & 29
10:00 a.m.                  

Led by a docent from the Three Sisters Historical Museum, tours are about an hour and a half and will travel about a mile on accessible sidewalks. Tours are free but reservations are required. Call 541-549-1403 or email:

Historic Tours of Downtown Redmond
May 2, 4:30 p.m.
Meet at SCP (Historic Redmond Hotel)
521 SW 6th St., Redmond

Preservation Month Kick Off: Redmond First Friday Self-Guided Walking Tours
May 3, 4:00 p.m.

Meet at SCP (Historic Redmond Hotel)
521 SW 6th St., Redmond

Reflections of History: An Architectural Tour
May 11 & 25, 10:30 a.m.
Deschutes Historical Museum; 129 NW Idaho Ave., Bend                               

Strolling through the Drake Park Neighborhood Historic District, participants will be introduced to the architectural styles represented in the neighborhood, hearing stories of a changing community. Reservations required: 541-389-1813 or

Steel Stampede
May 4, 7:00 p.m.
May 5, 5:00 p.m.
Deschutes County Fairgrounds

Central Oregon’s longest running Vintage Motocross and Trials event. Buy Tickets:

History of Central Oregon: 1825-1889
May 9, 6:00 pm
Bowman Museum, Prineville

Join us for part one of our May at the Museum Lecture Series as Historian Steve Lent explores a fascinating period marked by exploration, settlement, and conflict in the region.  Central Oregon’s history during this time period is deeply intertwined with the expansion of the United States into the western frontier, as well as the interactions between indigenous peoples, fur trappers, settlers, and ranchers.

Steve Lent’s lecture offers valuable insights into the complex and dynamic history of Central Oregon during the 19th century, highlighting the diverse experiences and challenges faced by those who shaped the region’s development. Through exploration, settlement, and conflict, Central Oregon’s history serves as a microcosm of the broader forces shaping the American West during this transformative period.

Heritage Walking Tour: The Early Days of Bend
May 4 & 18  10:30 a.m.     

Deschutes Historical Museum
129 NW Idaho Ave., Bend

Learn about early Bend through the stories of six “Bendites” and how these residents helped transform a young hamlet into a booming town.
Reservations required: 541-389-1813 or

Bend City Council Proclamation in support of National Historic Preservation Month
May 15, 7 pm

Council Chambers, Bend

History of Central Oregon: People from our Past
May 16, 6 pm
Bowman Museum, Prineville

Join us for part two of our May at the Museum Lecture Series as we step back in time with our captivating history program, ‘History of Central Oregon: People from Our Past.’ ‘People from Our Past’ delve into the lives and legacies of remarkable individuals who left an indelible mark on Central Oregon’s history. Join us as we uncover the adventures of William Thompson and Peter Skene Ogden and discover the pioneering spirit of Lorene Lakin and Anne Glaze

Through historical reenactors, engaging narratives, and historical insights, ‘People from Our Past ‘ brings to life the rich tapestry of Central Oregon’s history, celebrating the diverse individuals whose journeys helped shape the region we know today. Don’t miss this opportunity to connect with the fascinating stories of the past and gain a deeper understanding of the people who shaped our collective heritage.

High Desert Horror and the Lava Lake Murders
May 17, 18, 7:30 p.m.
May 19, 3:00 p.m.
Open Space Event Studios
220 Northeast Lafayette Ave., Bend

Clark Week Productions and the Deschutes Historical Museum bring you the story of Ray Van Buren Jackson in honor of the 8 victims who’s lives he brought to an untimely end. This theatrical event is an immersive experience complete with an exhibit curated by DHM and songs from the era.
Buy Tickets:

Open House at Historic St. Francis Church
May 19, 2:00 p.m.
599 NW Lava Rd., Bend
See and learn about recently completed window restorations.

Bicycle Bonanza Day at Troy Field
May 19, 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.
690 NW Bond Street, Bend

Upcycle your old bicycle and bike parts to Bicycle Re-Source of Bend, an organization dedicated for many years to connecting bikes with kids and
folks who need them. Old, unused bicycles, bike parts, wheels, tires, brakes, pedals, sprockets, chains, bike carts, panniers, seats, pumps, etc – all things bicycle are welcome. Sorry, no electric bikes.

Sponsored by Friends of Troy Field

Camp Polk Cemetery Tours
May 20, June 12
10:00 a.m.
69875 Camp Polk Rd.

This unique cemetery holds headstones dating back to the 1800s and many familiar names will greet   you. Tours are about one and a half hours in length and are free, but reservations are required. Call 541- 549-1403 or email at

Grand Re-Opening Celebration of The Historic the Nels Andersen Farmhouse
May 25, 11:00 am to 3:00 p.m.
63291 Nels Andersen Road, Bend

Celebrate the re-opening of Instant Landscaping inside the Nels Andersen Farmhouse, relocated and saved from the Highway 97 project. Live Music with the band Desert Sun.

Lunch and Learn- Turning 50: History, Photos and Stories from Your Park and Recreation District
May 28, 12:00 p.m.
Larkspur Community Center
1600 SE Reed Mkt Rd., Bend

Bend Park and Recreation District is celebrating its golden anniversary as a special taxing district.      Approved by voters in 1974, BPRD became an independent agency, charged with oversight for parks, trails and recreation services. Learn more about what’s changed, what’s the same and more from district staff and Deschutes Historical Museum’s Kelly Cannon-Miller.

History Pub: Preservation of Historic Barns
May 28, 7:00 p.m.
McMenamins Old St. Francis
700 NW Bond St., Bend

The 12th Annual Oregon Archaeology Road Show: The Archaeology of Food
June 1, 11-3:00 p.m.
Deschutes Historical Museum
129 NW Idaho Ave., Bend

Hands-on archaeology exhibits, activities and demonstrations. Throw a replica atlal and dart (aka  spear-thrower and spear), learn about tools that predate 9,000 years ago, and more. Free.