Sure it is the middle of winter, but that does not mean you can’t plan a fantastic trip to Portland! There is always something to do in Portland; here are just a few fun festivals to check out during your stay:
Fertile Ground Festival through January 29, 2012
This is a 10-day, citywide arts festival presented by Portland Area Theatre Alliance. This event showcases play premieres, art installations and events, all created by local artists.
Chinese New Year January 23-February 6, 2012
Celebrate the Year of the Dragon! This is a two-week celebration at the Lan Su Chinese Garden and includes lion dances, children’s activities, martial arts and cultural and historical demonstrations. The festival culminates with a traditional lantern-viewing ceremony. Events are free with garden admission.
Portland Seafood and Wine Festival February 3-4, 2012
This festival celebrates both the bounty harvested from the Pacific Ocean and the state’s vineyards (and scheduled smack dab in the middle of the Dungeness crab season!). Festival-goers enjoy great food, wine and live music at Oregon Convention Center.
Portland Jazz Festival February 17-26, 2012
Timed to coincide with Black History Month, the Portland Jazz Festival features performances around the city, including ticketed headline concerts, free shows and a range of educational opportunities.
Want more? Visit travelportland.com for a great list of art galleries, museums and other attractions (like Powell’s City of Books) to explore this winter.
Lets face it. The middle of winter can be a bit….well……blah. So what better way to spice things up than to take advantage of special offers that grant affordable access to Portland’s vibrant creative arts scene! We think it is pretty cool that Downtown Portland promotes the performing arts in our city with the successful Blah-Buster promotion kicking off in February 2012.
For more than a month, arts groups including Portland Center Stage, Oregon Children’s Theater, Oregon Ballet Theatre and the Oregon Symphony will offer two-for-one tickets for events throughout the city.
Full details will be available later this year at www.downtownportland.org.
Other Winter Events Coming Up:
Portland International Film Festival – February 9-25, 2012
The granddaddy of Oregon ﬁlm events, the Portland International Film Festival packs 100 ﬁlms from 30 countries into a busy two weeks every February.
Oregon Seafood and Wine Festival – February 3-4, 2012
Scheduled smack dab in the middle of the Dungeness crab season, this upscale festival celebrates both the bounty harvested from the Pacific Ocean and the state’s vineyards. More than 130,000 square feet (3,962 square meters) at the Oregon Convention Center allows plenty of room for festival-goers to wander while enjoying great food, wine and live music.
Travel Oregon, in partnership with Sustainable Travel International, is proud to introduce the Oregon Travel Philanthropy Fund. The first statewide program of its kind, this fund will support sustainable tourism development in Oregon by connecting businesses and travelers to projects that improve the environment, support local culture and enhance the destination for future visitors.
Participating businesses throughout the state can raise funds for projects via an optional $1 donation from customers. All projects selected as beneficiaries of the fund protect Oregon’s natural assets and/or support communities in a way that improves their appeal as a destination.
“Oregonians have a rich history of stewardship of the land and love of community,” said Kristin Dahl, Travel Oregon’s Senior Manager of Destination Development. “This program is a natural fit as we will raise funds to directly improve and enhance Oregon communities. We expect this to result in enriching experiences for visitors and participating businesses.”
The Oregon Travel Philanthropy Fund will work with lodging properties during the initial phase of the program, which lasts through 2012. Other types of businesses, such as restaurants, tour operators and retail stores, will be invited to participate in the next phase. Individuals and corporations can also contribute directly to the fund.
The fund will support one project from each of Oregon’s seven tourism regions. Examples include: supporting agritourism in Eastern Oregon by developing new point-of-sale options for local food products; creating a new recreation trail from the town of Rogue River to the Rogue River Valley, provided by The Rogue River Greenway Foundation; and in Portland, the Living Highways Project will plant and maintain over 5,000 trees along I-205, as part of the Greenspace Initiative. For more information and to view the full list of selected projects, go to: www.traveloregonforever.com/giveback
“We chose these projects because they represent some of the best work being done to steward the environment, build community and showcase the food and culture that make Oregon a great destination,” said Jon-Paul Bowles, Sustainable Travel International’s Vice President of Destination Stewardship.
The Oregon Tourism Commission, dba Travel Oregon, works to enhance visitors’ experience by providing information, resources and trip planning tools that inspire travel and consistently convey the exceptional quality of Oregon. The commission aims to improve Oregonians’ quality of life by strengthening economic impacts of the state’s $8.7 billion tourism industry. www.TravelOregon.com
Sustainable Travel International
Sustainable Travel International’s (STI) forward-thinking solutions strengthen the positive impacts of tourism worldwide, with a clear focus on the bottom line. The STI team specializes in connecting constituents across the value chain in order to effect change in the industry. As a result, STI partners with destinations and multi-national corporations to advance their sustainability efforts, and offers small to medium-sized businesses a suite of turnkey sustainability management tools.
Ultimately, STI’s programs help tourism businesses safeguard the authenticity of the destinations
they serve, helping to protect their natural and cultural heritage, while contributing to local
Portland, Oregon comes alive during the holiday with these annual events. Spend a few days here and you will see why Portland, Oregon is one of the best travel destinations in the country! There are too many local holiday events to mention in one blog post so visit downtownportland.org and plan your own outing.
Festival of Lights at The Grotto – Through Friday, December 30, 2011.. Closed Christmas Day
The Grotto’s Christmas Festival of Lights is the largest Christmas choral festival in the world. The 2011 festival features nearly 170 indoor holiday concerts and an amazing display of more than 500,000 lights. illuminates the largest choral festival A petting zoo, puppet shows and seasonal food and beverages also highlight the event.
Parade of Christmas Ships – December 8 – 20, 2011
This year marks the 57th year for the Christmas Ship Parade on the Columbia and Willamette Rivers in Portland, Oregon. This ﬂeet of 55-60 brightly lit boats has staged performances on the Willamette and Columbia rivers during the holiday season. Visit the Christmas Ships website for dates, times and best viewing locations.
ZooLights Festival – Through Jan. 1 (closed Dec. 24 & 25)
The Oregon Zoo becomes a holiday fairyland as one of Portland’s largest light displays blazes to life. More than a million sparkling lights transform the zoo into a winter wonderland. Decorated train rides, kids’ activities, and music by community groups.
From great coffee to beautiful lights to the Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony, Portland will be merry this season!
There is a bounty of local festivals and celebrations this month in and around Portland, Oregon! Here are a few highlights of what you will find just minutes from The Grand Hotel at Bridgeport. A special thanks to the Washington County Visitors Association for sharing this great info!
Beaverton Harvest Market Saturday, Nov. 19 8 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
Fill your cornucopia at this one-time harvest market, timed perfectly for the Saturday before Thanksgiving. In addition to seasonal foods, the market features vendors offering flowers and crafts
German Holiday Market at German American School, Beaverton
Saturday, Nov. 19 (10 a.m. to 5 p.m.) &
Sunday, Nov. 20 (10 a.m. to 3 p.m.)
Enjoy traditional German food, novelties, nutcrackers and live entertainment at this free, two-day event, which is in its 12th year. Admission is free. For more information, please contact the school at 503-626-9089
Thanksgiving Wine Weekend- Various Washington County wineries Friday, Nov. 25 – Sunday, Nov. 27
11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Celebrate Thanksgiving weekend in Washington County’s wine country, when wineries are all open and often have special perks such as vintage tastings, live music and/or light appetizers.
16th Annual Holiday Ale Festival November 30th – Sunday, December 4th, 2011. Pioneer Courthouse Square, Portland. Each year, the Holiday Ale Festival annually gathers up dozens of these winter warmers for a joyous five-day celebration. More than 40+ breweries will be featured at this year’s event, all of which are created specifically to bring warmth and cheer to the holiday season.
Hillsboro “Holly Days” Market Saturday, Dec. 3 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. Second & Main Streets, downtown Hillsboro
This seasonal market is held in conjunction with the tree lighting and Santa visit. This year, there will be about 35 vendors, as well as live entertainment and activities for children. More info.
On your next visit, we recommend you check out some of the many antique, vintage and collectibles shops found in Washington County. With 150 years of history, it’s no surprise that antique stores are abundant in Oregon; visitors have their pick antique boutiques rich with history and hidden treasures.
You can find shops that appeal to all collectors, from furniture to jewelry, and everything in between throughout the region. Here are a few top picks we found on www.visitwashingtoncountyoregon.com
Hillsboro has become a haven for the antique hunter, and a stroll down the city’s downtown area, including Main Street is like a trip to yesteryear, with its fine collection of art, consignment and antique shops.
Antiques take center stage on and near Main Street, with shops such as Le’Stuff Antique Mall, a co-op with thousands of antiques ranging from furniture and jewelry to unique knick-knacks.
From Sherwood’s historic “Old Town” to the main drag, many antique shops in this growing city have attracted many collectors from around the globe.
In historic “Old Town” Sherwood, the Railroad Street Antique Mall is a haven for antique lovers, with collectibles ranging from toys and advertising, pottery and glassware, costume jewelry, furniture and much more.
Just a quick walk from the Railroad Street Antique Mall is the Lavender Tea House, a traditional, English-style tea house that is located in a quaint house in Old Town.
Unger’s Trading Post is an antique mall conveniently located on Highway 99W, between Newberg and Sherwood. The Trading Post has a wide variety of vintage and antique pottery, furniture, clothes, collectibles and art.
Forest Grove, Oregon
The city of Forest Grove is not a typical college town. Home of Pacific University, a small, private institution, Forest Grove’s retro-feel blends well with its popular wineries, saké brewery, performing arts venues, art galleries and eclectic shops.
Main Street is home to three of the city’s antique shops, and becomes a hub of activity the first Wednesday of each month with the “Forest Grove First Wednesday” event. Many local businesses, including antique shops, in downtown Forest Grove welcome visitors with special offers and tastings from Oregon wineries.
Antique collectors will enjoy the vast selection of items at Collections in the Attic, which boasts a wide selection of hard-to-find items, ranging from small collectibles to plates and glasses and furniture.
For a treat, antique hunters can stop into Maggie’s Buns,, an eclectic, retro-style coffee shop, that serves homemade baked goods, vegetarian-friendly entrees and salads. The “Buns” in Maggie’s Buns refers to the delectable cinnamon buns, which often sell out quickly.
You probably have already heard that Washington County, Oregon is the place for fabulous wineries, dining, hiking and biking trails, golf courses, and shopping districts. But did you know that we are also home to interesting museums and historic sites?
On your next weekend adventure, be sure to check out a few of these historical places:
1. Rice Northwest Museum of Rocks and Minerals
26385 NW Groveland Dr.
Hillsboro, OR 97124
• Recognized as the finest mineral museum in the Pacific Northwest and one of the best in the U.S.
• Meteorite Display presented by Cascade Meteorite Laboratory of Portland State University
• Situated in former 1952 residence of Richard and Helen Rice
• Listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2006; recognized for its distinctive architectural style and use of natural stone and native Oregon woods
• Hours: Wed – Sun: 1:00 pm – 5:00 pm; admission charged
2. Washington County Historical Museum
17677 NW Springville Rd.
Portland, OR 97229
• Located at Portland Community College, Rock Creek, in unincorporated Washington County
• County history from Atfalati Indians through mid-1800 pioneer settlements to the present
• “Whipsaws to Chainsaws” exhibit: the history of logging and timber in Washington County
• More than 50,000 artifacts, including an 1853 jail building that held county and territorial prisoners
• Research library with 25,000 historic photos, maps, manuscripts, genealogical materials
• Hours: Mon – Sat: 10:00 am – 4:30 pm; admission charged
3. John Tigard House
10310 SW Canterbury Lane
Tigard, OR 97224
• Built in 1880 by the eldest son of Wilson Tigard, founding father of Tigardville (now Tigard)
• Carpenter Gothic Victorian architecture, listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1979
• Open to the public on the second Sunday of each month
4. Old Scotch Church
30685 NW Scotch Church Rd.
Hillsboro, OR 97124
• One of the oldest continuously used churches in Oregon – 1873 to present
• Established by settlers from Aberdeenshire, Scotland; early cemetery on church grounds
• Listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1974
5. The Clark Historic District in Forest Grove
• 18-block district with homes dating as early as 1854
• 10 buildings on the National Register of Historic Places
• Located between 16th and 19th Avenues and “A” and Elm Streets
• Settled by some of the earliest pioneers to come over the Oregon Trail
6. Old College Hall at Pacific University
2043 College Way
Forest Grove, OR 97116
• Built in 1850, one of the oldest collegiate buildings in the western U.S.
• Listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1974
• Museum galleries present history and cultural influence of Pacific University, plus foreign artifacts reflecting the university’s strong missionary heritage
• Open first Wednesday of each month and for special events
7. Historic Sherwood Old Town
• Founded as Smockville, platted in 1889 and incorporated in 1893
• Located between NE Oregon Street and Third Avenue, Railroad Street and Ash Avenue
By Jeff McRitchie
Portland, Oregon is one of the most popular cities in the Pacific Northwest due to its wondrous natural surroundings, relaxed atmosphere, and the sheer variety of things to do. Here are five great places to visit if you happen to find yourself in Portland…
Washington Park. Portland is famous for its beautiful rose gardens which can be found in Washington Park. The Park is nestled in the city’s West Hills and you can see the roses in bloom in late spring/early summer. (June is when the city’s annual Rose Festival is held.)
The garden offers some of the best views of the city’s skyline and on a sunny day, you can see Mt. Hood as well. Washington Park is also home to some other attractions including the Hoyt Arboretum (a great place to hike), the Japanese Garden, and the Oregon Zoo which has an impressive exhibit called Steller Cove which features sea otters and sea lions.
Powell’s. No visit to Portland is complete without a trip to Powell’s City of Books. This is one of the biggest bookstores in the world (if not THE biggest) and it has an incredible selection to say the least. The store reportedly stocks over 1 million titles and offers used books right alongside the new ones. The store features a great reading series and carries a wonderful section of gift items including t-shirts, messenger bags, bookmarks, and journals. Even if you’re not a bookworm, Powell’s is worth checking out if only to say you’ve been there.
The Northwest District. One of the most popular areas in Portland is its Northwest District which can be found along NW 21st and 23rd Avenues. This is a neighborhood filled with vintage homes and apartments, great restaurants, boutiques, and even Cinema 21, the city’s premier art house theater. You can find virtually any type of cuisine in this neighborhood (Thai, Italian, kosher, vegan) and if you’re not in the mood for food, there are plenty of coffee shops you can visit instead. The neighborhood is very walkable (a good thing since parking is hard to find) and it’s served by TriMet buses and the Portland Streetcar which can take you downtown and to Tom McCall Waterfront Park.
Sauvie Island. Sauvie Island is to the northwest of downtown Portland, right in the middle of the Columbia River. This island is home to a wildlife preserve, numerous farms, and several beaches that are packed during warm summer days. Sauvie Island is perfect for biking and it can also be a pleasant place to take a Sunday drive. Chances are good you’ll see a variety of birds among other critters and in the summer, the fields are dotted with colorful flowers. Sauvie Island is a beautiful place and definitely one of the city’s best attractions.
The Portland Art Museum. Finally, the Portland Art Museum is a great place to visit, especially for art aficionados. In addition to their stunning collection of Native America and Asian art, the Museum has a wonderful modern art exhibit that includes 19th century and Pop Art masterpieces. The Museum often holds special events and exhibitions so depending on when you go, you might be able to view work from the Impressionists or the riches from a famous European family. There’s always something interesting to see at the Museum, so check it out.
Those are just a few of the great places you can visit in Portland, Oregon. They’re all enjoyable and there’s something for everybody. Have fun in the City of Roses!
About the Author: Jeff McRitchie is the Vice-President of Marketing for MyBinding.com. He regularly writes articles, reviews, and blog posts on topics related to bookbinding, laminating, paper shredding, and office equipment. More than 2,500 of his articles have been published in thousands of locations on the Internet. If you’re looking for information about binding machines his articles are a great place to start.
Article Source: EzineArticles.com
Bridges and Boundaries: Jewish & African Americans Playing Jazz
The 2011 Alaska Airlines/Horizon Air Portland Jazz Festival presented by US Bank will be held Friday, February 18 through Sunday, February 27 at venues throughout Portland. The week-long festival will include jazz education and outreach along with a series of concerts all supporting the 2011 theme: Bridges and Boundaries: Jewish & African Americans Playing Jazz.
Among this year’s headliners:
- SFJAZZ Collective, in the world premiere of new repertoire paying homage to African American pop icon Stevie Wonder;
- NEA Jazz Master Randy Weston, performing solo piano in support of his new release, The Storyteller, and autobiography, African Rhythms: The Autobiography of Randy Weston;
- celebrated clarinetist Don Byron and his new project dedicated to the great Jewish entertainer, Mickey Katz – a reunion of the groundbreaking and virtuosic klezmer ensemble that recorded Byron’s eponymous Nonesuch album and spearheaded the klezmer revival in the 1990s;
- a special performance by The 3 Cohens, featuring siblings, trumpeter Avishai Cohen, saxophonist/clarinetist Anat Cohen, and pianist Yuval Cohen;
- famed African American violinist Regina Carter will return to Portland, presenting her newest project, Reverse Thread, which traces the musical history of African cultures, including tribes of Ugandan Jews;
- saxophonist Joshua Redman – son of African American saxophonist Dewey Redman and Jewish American dancer Renee Shedroff – leading his new project, James Farm, that includes both African American and Jewish American musicians;
- and the Portland Jazz Festival’s new Artistic & Community Ambassador, bassist Esperanza Spalding (who will lead her new Chamber Music Society in an exclusive Portland area engagement).
How to Purchase Tickets:
Portland Jazz Festival Box Office
Hours of Operation: 11am – 5pm, Monday-Thursday
Order by Phone: 503 228-5299
In Person:133 SW 2nd Avenue, Ste 420 Portland, OR 97204
PCPA Main Box Office
1111 SW Broadway
Open 10 a.m. – 5 p.m., Monday through Saturday
Walk up sales only
Handling charges will apply.
You may purchase tickets online, over the phone, or in person with Ticketmaster. Additional handling and convenience charges will apply.
Visit pdxjazz.org for the complete concert schedule:
What is PDX Jazz?
PDX Jazz is Portland’s jazz organization, producing the annual Alaska Airlines/Horizon Air Portland Jazz Festival presented by U.S. Bank. PDX Jazz offers an array of distinguished programs throughout the year in a variety of indoor and outdoor settings boasting internationally recognized artists while supporting regional fan favorites from the Northwest, often times presented in newly configured formats.
PDX Jazz in partnership with Oregon Music News recently initiated a monthly jazz series at PDX Jazz @ Tony Starlight’s, an intimate music venue, located in northeast Portland.
The 2011 Alaska Airlines/Horizon Air Portland Jazz Festival presented by US Bank will feature a series of headline concerts, jazz education and outreach, Gospel and Klezmer Brunches, and panel discussions based around this year’s theme, Bridges and Boundaries: Jewish & African Americans Playing Jazz.
We love it! Our friends at Visit Washington County Oregon have done it again! They came out with another amazing video that highlights the beauty and diverse range of activities for travelers in our area. Appropriately titled “Come Play Our Way”; the video demonstrates that Washington County (that includes Tigard), Oregon is easy to get to and a great place to unwind with golf, wine, tax-free shopping and more. Watch it and see what you think! We especially love the Bridgeport Village shots by the way!