Blog, Bridgeport village, Restaurants, Tualatin

The Mysterious History of Valentines Day

Jan 26, 2011

Valentine's Day Package at The Grand Hotel in Bridgeport

Each year millions of couples around the world will exchange tokens of affection in the form of gifts, cards, candy or flowers in honor of  Valentines Day on February 14. Restaurants are filled with couples celebrating romance over a special dinner; hotels get booked with couples who choose to celebrate with a romantic getaway (like our special Suites for Your Sweets Package)

So how did these Valentines Day traditions begin and who is this mysterious St. Valentine we keep hearing about?  My search brought me to which gave me some very interesting details to share:

I learned that the origins of Valentines Day are somewhat mysterious:

  • *Legend has it that Valentine was a priest who served during the third century in Rome and was ordered to be put to death when he continued to perform marriages after Emperor Claudius II had outlawed it (so men would be better soldiers)
  • *Another legend says that Valentine fell in love with the daughter of one of his jailers while in prison and actually sent the first “valentine” greeting to her before his death- a love letter signed “From your Valentine,”
  • *Valentine greetings were popular as far back as the Middle Ages (written Valentine’s didn’t begin to appear until after 1400), and the oldest known Valentine card is on display at the British Museum.
  • *Valentine’s Day as we now know it began to be popularly celebrated around the seventeenth century in Great Britain.
  • *The first commercial Valentine’s Day greeting cards produced in the U.S. were created in the 1840s by Esther A. Howland. Howland, known as the Mother of the Valentine, made elaborate creations with real lace, ribbons and colorful pictures known as “scrap.”

Special Valentines Day Package: The Grand Hotel in Bridgeport is celebrating Valentines Day by partnering with Split Wine Bar to provide you and your Amore with a romantic getaway.

For only $199.00 (plus tax) you will be able to enjoy a fabulous dinner at Split Wine Bar and then return to a luxuriously appointed Jacuzzi suite. If you’ve missed out on the Jacuzzi Suites we are offering the same package added to a Classic King room for $169.00 (plus tax).

The package includes:

  • $50.00 Gift Certificate to Split Wine Bar
  • Fresh Flowers
  • Gourmet Chocolates
  • Bottle of Champagne or Sparkling Cider
  • Late checkout

Don’t waste any time!  These suites book up fast! Please call: 866-968-5757 to reserve.

How to Choose a Wedding Reception Venue – Reception Site Tips For Brides-to-Be

Jan 10, 2011

Article By Tarah Jahnig

With engagement season in full swing, brides-to-be across the country are making decisions on every detail of their big day, from ceremony dates to napkin colors. With limited planning time and hundreds of details to consider, choosing a wedding reception venue can seem like an overwhelming task. Thankfully, for brides armed with the right tools, it does not have to be.

With so many things to think about, some couples rush into choosing a reception site without considering all of the details. Determine what your needs are first, and find a venue that will work with you to create your vision.

Before signing a contract, consider the following:

The Guest List: Some couples mistakenly pick a venue without considering how many people they plan to invite. Nail down a guest list tally, and then choose a venue with appropriate accommodations – not the other way around.

The Budget: A wedding reception often consumes more than half of the bride’s total budget (including catering and decorations). Consider potential fees for the room rental, catering, bar service, setup and teardown, and chair or linen rental. Also be sure to ask about hidden fees, such as corking or cake-cutting. These are details many couples do not think to ask about, but are surprised by on their wedding day.

The Convenience: To cut expenses, consider a location that offers full-service wedding reception facilities, where basics like tables, chairs and linens are provided in the rental fee. A hotel with banquet facilities and room accommodations also reduces transportation headaches for out-of-town guests.

The Catering: Determine the type of food you plan to serve. Whether you envision a full meal, or just hors d’oevres or a dessert bar, consider whether the venue has in-house catering to accommodate your requests. If not, be sure to ask if the venue allows guests to use an outside caterer for a meal or dessert

The Decor: It might be difficult to picture how an empty reception site can be transformed for your wedding day. Ask to see photos from other wedding receptions held there, and find out what types of decorations are allowed.

Most importantly, choose a reception venue where you and your guests will receive excellent service. No bride-to-be wants to be stuck coordinating details at the last minute, and picking the right vendor ensures you will be able to kick back and celebrate with friends and family on the big day.

About the Author: Tarah Jahnig writes on behalf of the The Ramada Tropics Resort and Conference Center in Des Moines, IA. The Ramada Tropics Resort and Conference Center offers full-service wedding reception services, with a 5,200 square foot ballroom that can accommodate up to 400 guests. The newly renovated Des Moines hotel also features an indoor water park, poolside tiki bar, restaurant, catering services, and 166 guest rooms.

Article Source:

Interpretive Panels Installed Along the Vineyard & Valley Scenic Tour Route

Jan 03, 2011

Here is some recent news to share from our friends at the Washington County Visitors Association that road trippers and wine lovers will love!

Panels Provide a Glimpse into the Rich Agricultural and Pioneer History of Washington County

BEAVERTON, Ore.  – The first two of four new interpretive panels were installed this month along the Vineyard & Valley Scenic Tour Route, a 50-mile driving tour, from Helvetia to Sherwood, through the agricultural and historical region of Washington County, Oregon. Each panel offers a quick lesson about the area’s history, and bridges the area’s history with today’s modern culture.

Located at the Old Scotch Church in Hillsboro, a history of Washington County interpretive panel provides a historical perspective about the earliest settlers in the area, from the Atfalati tribe of the Kalapuya Native Americans, to the arrival of early settlers Joe Meek, Joseph Gale and David Hill. The location is fitting, as Meek’s grave and headstone can be found in the church’s cemetery.

An interpretive panel that illustrates the rich agricultural history of Washington County is at the Smith Berry Barn, also located in Hillsboro. From the 1870s to present day, this panel provides a brief account of some of the area’s earliest farmers, as well as the site itself.

The Vineyard & Valley Scenic Tour Route is an experiential tour through Washington County’s rural countryside, with opportunities to stop at the various attractions along the route: wineries, farms, pioneer settlements, wetlands and natural habitats. The route officially was launched in April 2009, and several projects have enhanced the site, including the installation of crop signs, created with the assistance of the Oregon Agribusiness Council.

Two additional installations of interpretive panels, which will explore the area’s natural and viticultural history, are slated for completion in 2011.

About the Washington County Visitors Association

The Washington County Visitors Association (WCVA) serves the region’s tourism industry by actively promoting Washington County, Ore., to travelers outside of the Portland Metropolitan area as a tourism destination for leisure, business and sporting events. Washington County is scenically situated between Portland and the Oregon Coast, and spans 727 square miles. The destination includes the growing communities of Banks, Beaverton, Cornelius, Durham, Forest Grove, Gaston, Hillsboro, King City, North Plains, Sherwood, Tigard, Tualatin and Wilsonville. For more information about the WCVA, visit www.yourwaytoplay or www.visitwashingtoncountyoregon, or call 503-644-5555.

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