Portland, Oregon says “Goodbye Grey, hello blue!!!”

Put away your fleece and rain boots, its summertime in the Northwest!  Sunshine, blue skies, sandy beaches, pristine mountains. Whatever
you’re in the mood for, you’ll find it here. So many choices, so little time!

Whether you want to stay in the city or take a short road trip, Portland Oregon and the surrounding areas offer many things to do:

Want to stay in the city?  Lose yourself in Powell’s City of Books.  The book store covers an entire city block and contains more than 1.5 million
books. This book store will blow your mind, whether you’re a reader of not, it’s a cool place to visit and check out!

Enjoy the nation’s largest weekly open-air arts and crafts market at Portland Saturday Market where hundreds of unique creations are made
by the people selling them. I highly suggest a stop by the Portland’s Elephant Ears booth to sample this unique sugary treat !  If you have
never heard of an Elephant Ear before, it’s a cross between a Funnel Cake and a Churro! YUMMY!

Want to talk about another food icon in Portland?  Voodoo Donuts  is a MUST see unique one of a kind donut shop offering specialty donuts
that range from their registered trademark Voodoo Donut Doll to their donuts with different types of cereal imaginable on top- Fruit Loops,
Captain Crunch & Coco Puffs!  Oh My, don’t forget to try the Bacon Maple Bar Donut!  Can you believe a donut topped with actual strips of
crunchy bacon on it?! WOW sweet and salty all in one is a WIN in my book! Name your taste and I’m sure they have something for you, even
Vegan’s are covered at this place.  Another food icon in this great city is the Portland Food Carts. If  you are a foodie, like I am, then you
have to check out the food carts & trucks here in the city.

Forest Park– hiking, biking, running.  You’ll need some exercise after eating the above mentioned treats.  Here in forest park you’ll find all
types of things to do in this urban forest reserve.  Note, it’s one of the largest in the country.  One thing you can’t do in this park is FISH.

Quick trip to the beach?  You can be at the Oregon coast in approximately 90 minutes with a plethora of activities to choose from.  You can
even camp at the beach here along the Oregon coast.  Beverly Beach is one of the state’s largest state parks hidden in a forest between Cape
Foulweather and the Yaquina Head.  Next time someone tells you to “Go fly a kite”…head to Beverly Beach and fly that kite !

Ready for some excitement on this trip to Oregon?  Take a spin white water rafting in Maupin. Oregon.  You can be at the Deschutes River for
amazing white water rafting in just 90 minutes from Portland.  You’ll find trips for every range of interest and every level of ability, from
half-day thrillers to 5-day adventures through the heard of wild Oregon.   

If the sugary treats aren’t your cup of tea, maybe you’d be up for a little wine tasting?  A short 30 minute drive out of Portland  and you can
visit Willamette Valley, the heart of Oregon’s wine country with more than 300 wineries to choose from.  Also check out the area for special
festivals and events taking place.  Just remember your designated Driver because everyone is sure to have a good time sampling all these
great wines.  No one wants to be the DD?  No problem, let’s get you hooked up with a car & driver for the day, leave the driving to the sober
professional driver.  Or, how about just staying in the area at a great B&B for the night?

A point of a interest for anyone looking for a mountainside lodge is the Timberline Lodge.  The Timberline Lodge is a mountain lodge on the
south side of Mt. Hood in Oregon, about 60 miles east of Portland.  This National Historic Landmark sits at an elevation of 5,960 feet within
the Mount Hood National Forest.  Its a popular tourist attraction, drawing more than a million visitors annually and is noted in the film
for serving as the exterior over the Overlook Hotel in the movie the Shining. 

On your way down the mountain from the Timberline Lodge, stop at the Ski Bowl for a little summer fun.  Start by taking a leisurely ride on the
ski lift and finish by zooming down the mountain on a go kart (or mountain bike, but I’m liking this go kart idea!)…we are talking summer
right now so we’ll leave the snow skiing and snow boarding for the winter month visits.

Columbia River Gorge:  last but not least, take a ride out to the Columbia River Gorge for some incredibly breathtaking scenery.  This is the
largest national scenic area in the United States consisting of natural contrasts between rain forest and desert.  Here you will find the
world famous Multnomah Falls whish is a must see when visiting this region!  Plummeting 620 feet, Multnomah Falls is the second highest
year round waterfall in the United States.  Whether you want to leisurely view the falls from below or hike up to the amazing vista of the
Columbia Gorge, you won’t be disappointed!

And because you all know I am a foodie, I’ll end this with another food tip- When visiting the falls, stop by the Multnomah Falls Lodge for some
fabulous Marionberry or Huckleberry pancakes before or after your hike up the falls.  GREAT Pancakes and Great Views make for a
wonderful dining experience.

So, hopefully we’ve given new light to Portland, Oregon so that the next time you think about Oregon, you aren’t thinking “Rain” you’re thinking
fun & outdoor adventures!

This article wouldn’t have happened without the great input from my best friend and resident Oregon lover- Joyce Pilotte!  Thanks Joyce for
spending your weekend sending me info on some of the great things we did when I went to visit.  We only covered a few but if you are
interested in visiting Portland, let me know so I can tell you about the Underground City Tour, The Drag Queen Show, the Japanese Gardens
and this great mountain that even I made it up when we hiked! Lots to do & see in this fun easy going city!

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