If you are like most people, you are probably ready for a relaxing vacation getaway! The good news is spring and summer will be here soon it and it’s time to start planning!
You know what they say….”Failing to plan is planning to fail” and when it comes to getting quality R & R, you don’t want to fail!!
There are numerous Oregon travel resources available to help you plan your Oregon adventure like Travel Oregon, Travel Portland, Downtown Portland, and many more. However, this month we are spotlighting our very own Washington County Visitors Association (WCVA).
Not long ago, WCVA launched a series of helpful interactive videos intended to give you a visual experience of the many destinations and attractions here in Washington County Oregon. This is a great resource to you plan your trip so we invite you to relax, escape or explore Oregon’s Washington County through this amazing series.
Where will your adventure take you?
ABOUT OREGON’S WASHINGTON COUNTY Oregon’s Washington County is scenically situated between Portland and the Oregon Coast. The destination covers 727 square miles and includes the growing communities of Banks, Beaverton, Cornelius, Forest Grove, Gaston, Hillsboro, King City, North Plains, Sherwood, Tigard, Tualatin and Wilsonville. Washington County is home to world-class golf courses, award-winning wineries, breweries and distilleries, an array of outdoor recreation opportunities, lush, natural and scenic wetlands and wildlife preserves, superb dining, and myriad shopping. For more information, visit the Washington County Visitors Association’s official destination website.
The autumn months give way to a host of agricultural harvest, wine and food festivals, while tree lightings, holiday events and quilt and gem fairs are popular in the winter - OregonsWashingtonCounty.com
Taking a trip to the Portland, Oregon area this month? You are in for a treat! There are dozens of wonderful things happening here in November, so bring on the holiday season!
We have listed some suggestions to choose from this month but encourage you to visit the following sites to help plan your upcoming trip! As always, we are here to help!
A wine and food celebration created to present a rich rewarding experience for wine lovers and gourmet food enthusiasts. Guests can expect a floor filled with over 600 wines and 50 restaurants and gourmet food tastes which feature an incredible array of options for guests. 800-422-0251
- Ducks vs. Beaver Pep Rally: Nov. 27 from 5:30-7:30pm
- Light Up The Night Tree Lighting and The Beatniks Concert: Nov. 29 from 6-8pm
- Bridgeport Express Train: Nov. 29 -Dec. 21 from 11am-2pm and 3pm-5pm daily
- Holiday Magic Light Show: Nov. 29-Dec. 31 On the hour from 5-9pm daily. Watch as Center Court transforms into a Winter Wonderland of snow flurries. You won’t want to miss this magical show of light, sound and snow! Snow Shows every night at 7pm in Center Court
- Fall For Savings: November 4-30
- Holiday tree lighting: On the day after Thanksgiving, thousands of people gather in downtown’s Pioneer Courthouse Square to see the ceremonial lighting of the spectacular 75-foot-tall tree and celebrate the official start of the holiday season.
- Northwest Filmmakers’ Festival: The Northwest Filmmakers’ Festival presents features, documentaries and short films by independent Northwest film and video makers. The offerings are chosen from more than 400 entries by a prominent member of the independent film community. Past judges have included local luminaries Gus Van Sant, Matt Groening and Todd Haynes. Founded in 1973, the festival attracts more than 6,000 attendees annually.
- Wine Country Thanksgiving: During Wine Country Thanksgiving, more than 160 wineries and tasting rooms in the Willamette Valley open their doors for special tastings and holiday festivities over Thanksgiving weekend (Friday-Sunday), offering an opportunity to visit some of the region’s small, family-owned wineries that aren’t usually open to the public. Meet winemakers, enjoy specialty food pairings and live music, all while savoring the region’s acclaimed wines.Full article
- Holiday light displays: Some of Portland’s bright spots include ZooLights, a display of more than a million lights at the Oregon Zoo, and the Christmas Ship Parade, featuring brilliantly decorated boats on the Willamette and Columbia rivers. Many start the day after Thanksgiving, so you can enjoy the holiday cheer in November, too. Full article
Fall is just around the corner, and the local festivals and fun is just getting started! Here is a local round up of some of the many events happening Labor Day through the end of September! Let us help you plan your trip! Please feel free to contact us and inquire about one of our many hotel packages and specials.
Late Summer/Early Fall Events in Portland
Art in the Pearl – Labor Day weekend
Beginning August 31 through September 2, 2013 more than 130 artists will gather in the North Park Blocks, with food vendors, musicians and family activities rounding out the offerings. Considered one of the nation’s premier art festivals, Art In The Pearl features the jury-selected work of artists from across the USA and Canada.
Musicfest NW – September 3-8, 2013
Now in it’s thirteenth year, MusicfestNW will showcase local musicians, bring in national acts and benefit children’s music education in Portland.
Feast Portland – September 19-22, 2013
Portland’s own world-class celebration of food, drink and everything else that makes Portland awesome. At the heart of the festival is a mission to end childhood hunger in Oregon and in our country. This international culinary festival taps into the wealth of renowned Portland chefs — and welcomes noted culinary stars from around the world — to make the most of Oregon’s bounty.
Coming up at Bridgeport Village
Very Engaging Bridal Event Sept. 29 from 11am-4pm. Presented by Portland Bride & Groom magazine and Bridgeport Village.
More than 100 retailers and wedding professionals for all your wedding needs…Shop, sip, and savor your way through Bridgeport Village as you connect with over 100 retailers and wedding professionals.
Late Summer/Early Fall Events in Oregon’s Washington County
Just minutes from downtown Portland, Oregon’s Washington County offers events ranging from wine tasting and farmers’ markets to live music and community festivals. Enjoy unique festivals every season in Washington County, guaranteed to offer seasonality, community and entertainment. The autumn months give way to a host of agricultural harvest, wine and food festivals.
Oregon Renaissance Festival Open Weekends & Labor Day August 24 – September 29, 2013 10:00 am – 7:00 pm
The village of Hillsboro recreates a 16th century European village for 13 days of merriment weekends beginning in August through September. Enjoy talented artists, non-stop amazing stage entertainers, food, crafts, pageantry and more. History comes alive with this renaissance of the Renaissance!
First Wednesday Wed, September 4, 2013 in Forest Grove, OR
First Wednesday on Main Street in Forest Grove offers fun, community events, vendors, and activities to enjoy. Shop the Farmers’ Market, view the works of artists, taste wines and be entertained with live music. It’s great way to celebrate Forest Grove!
Apple Harvest Festival September 28, 2013 Tigard, OR
The Apple Harvest Festival comes alive at The John Tigard House Museum with live music, quilt evaluations, a display of historic farm tools and, of course, traditional apple cider. The band, Fadedblue, will be performing and Amelia Endorf, a quilt evaluator, will be on hand answering quilt questions. If you have a favorite historical quilt, bring it along and she will tell you when it was stitched, with what materials, what occasion and even how many people worked on it.
Whole Farm Dinner at Alloro Vineyard Sat, September 7, 2013 Sherwood, OR
Award-winning Chef Jason Barwikowski, Executive Chef of the Woodsman Tavern, will prepare a feast with over 90% of the ingredients sourced from the Alloro Vineyard. This intimate candlelit dinner will be centered around Spring Lamb and glorious summer vegetables and fruits, paired with estate wines. The dinner is $125/person and seating is limited to 30 people. Contact the winery to sign up for this delicious event.
Plan Your Trip with the NEW Washington County Visitors Association 2013-2014 Official Visitor Guide!
In fact, we try to go out of our way to make sure our guests are having a wonderful visit and taking advantage of the many amenities and attractions in the Washington County Oregon area.
Whether you are visiting for a wedding, tax-free back to school shopping, Oregon wine tours, business, family or just to get away; we strongly encourage you to order or download a FREE copy of of the The Washington County Visitors Association (WCVA)’s 2013-2014 Official Oregon’s Washington County Visitor Guide.
Complete with new and updated information and features, the guide provides an overview of the myriad attractions, wineries, outdoor adventure spots, restaurants and lodging facilities in Washington County.
New this year are introductions to area winemakers, information about annual wine events, feature stories about the Vineyard and Valley Scenic Tour Route and the Tualatin Valley Scenic Bikeway and much more. In addition to the informative articles, the guide features images of the several of the county’s tastemakers and the diverse landscapes of Washington County, as well as new maps.
The WCVA publishes 150,000 guides annually, which are distributed at various locations throughout the state, including the Oregon Welcome Centers, Portland International Airport, Travel Portland’s Visitor Information Center, and chambers of commerce, wineries and other tourism-related businesses, as well as via Certified Folder Display Services. The WCVA also distributes several thousands of visitor guides, fulfilling requests from potential visitors, advertising lead programs and for distribution at events throughout the year.
The complimentary Official Washington County Visitors Guide may be requested online at oregonswashingtoncounty.com/Request-Visitor-Information, or by calling 503-644-5555, toll-free 800-537-3149 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also view a digital copy by clicking here.
Have you let this summer pass by without planning a little R & R for yourself? Don’t worry, summer is technically not over until September 21st so there is plenty of time to plan a much needed getaway to Oregon’s Washington Country/Portland area.
Need some help planning your trip? Our front desk staff will be happy to give you recommendations on fun attractions and events! You should can check the following resources for additional ideas:
Here are some local summer festivals coming up that are worth checking out.
- Bridgeport Village Summer Concert Series- Each Thursday evening through August 29th
- Washington County Fair, July 25-28: The annual Washington County Fair returns to the Washington County Fair Complex in Hillsboro with a weekend of carnival rides, live music and entertainment, food and more. Admission is free; individual events may have admission fees.
- 2013 Oregon International Air Show, July 26-28: The Oregon International Air Show is one of the premier aviation events in the Pacific Northwest, and features some of the best in aviation from all over the United States and Canada. The Entertainment Center, KidZone and Military Village offer exciting displays and fun for kids and adults alike. Local vendors will be on hand selling everything from souvenirs to tasty food. Tickets start at $20 ($25 after July 19); discounts for seniors, military and kids, ages 6-12.
- Best of Oregon Food & Wine Festival, August 9-10: The fifth annual Best of Oregon Food & Wine Festival returns to Washington County to showcase Oregon’s culinary culture with dozens of world-class wineries, restaurants and numerous culinary artisans.
- Summer Fest & Garlic Out West, August 9-11: Experience two evenings and three days of good music, food, entertainment, and fun at the 2013 Summer Fest & Garlic Out West. This event offers a 10k Run with Oregon Road Runners, a vintage Car Show, old fashioned parade down Main Street and a Pancake Breakfast. Kids can enjoy a full-size playground, exciting inflatables play area and rock wall. Free admission.
- Tualatin Crawfish Festival, August 9-10: Celebrate good eating–and the city of Tualatin’s 100th birthday–at the Tualatin Crawfish Festival, the nation’s oldest crawfish festival, west of the Mississippi. This is a two-day, fun-filled family event with a variety of food, entertainment, contests, activities for all ages and more.
- Annual Banks Bar-B-Que and Truck & Tractor Pull, August 17-19: This popular community event must be seen to be believed, and features a combine destruction derby, parade, car show, truck tug-of-war, garden tractors and more. General admission is free. Grandstand admission starts at $10 for adults, $5 for kids, ages 6-16.
- Oregon Renaissance Festival, Weekends, Saturday, Aug. 24 – Sunday, Sept. 29: Transport yourself to a 16th century European village at the inaugural Oregon Renaissance Festival, in town for 13 days of merriment. Enjoy talented artists, non-stop stage entertainers, food, crafts, pageantry and encounter beautiful maidens, wandering minstrels, joking jesters and jugglers. Magicians, acrobats, comedians, swordfighters, pirates and fairies will entertain and delight. Be sure to meet the “washing well wenches” and daily performance of an armored jousting. Feast on renaissance-inspired food and drink, including: savory turkey legs, steak on a stake, bangers & mash and chocolate-covered cheesecake.
For a complete list of summer events, including one-day annual events and special events, please visit our Events & Festivals Calendar.
Memorial Day has come and gone and that means summer is officially here! Summer truly is a magical time in Oregon’s Washington County. From strawberry, lavender and garlic festivals to fun, quirky and patriotic events, nearly each weekend during the season celebrates the richness of culture, agriculture and community throughout the region.
Here’s a preview of this summer’s multi-day events and festivals:
Dixie Mountain Grange Strawberry Festival, June 15-16: Sample fresh, Oregon berries at this annual Father’s Day weekend event. A tradition since 1952, the Dixie Mountain Grange hosts the popular Strawberry Festival, which features strawberry shortcake made with freshest ingredients, a quilt display, local craft booths and fresh local strawberries for purchase.
Festival of Balloons in Tigard, June 21-23: Join in an annual Tigard event offering fun for all ages. Weekend events will include a carnival, exhibitors, food, Twilight Run, Safety Safari, Festival of Cars, premiere youth soccer tournament, Rogue beer and morning hot air balloon launches (5:45 – 6:15 am) and NW Natural Night Glow launches (weather permitting)!
Oregon Lavender Festival, July 13-14: Enjoy visiting lavender farms at the height of the growing season, where each farm offers its own selection of different varieties, as well as activities special to this festival, including: lavender bouquet cutting, live music, food for purchase and other vendors. Visit each destination’s website for details. Participating locations in Washington County include: Barb’s Dutchmill Herbfarm, Helvetia Lavender Farm, Jackson School Lavender and Mountainside Lavender. Admission to the farms is free.
The 12th Annual Northwest String Summit, July 18-21: Get your bluegrass on at this four-day bluegrass and Americana music festival, held at Horning’s Hideout. This year’s festival features 26 artists–including three nights of headliner, Yonder Mountain String Band. Three-day and four-day passes are available, and tickets include primitive on-site camping and limited parking. Tickets start at $155, children 10 and under are free with a paying adult.
Sherwood Robin Hood Festival, July 19-21: For more than a half a century, Sherwood has celebrated Robin Hood, his Merry Men and Maid Marian. Medieval times come to life with Renaissance reenactments, a knighting ceremony, archery competition, castle building contest, parade, food, arts and crafts, live entertainment and other fun activities for the entire family. Admission is free.
Washington County Fair, July 25-28: The annual Washington County Fair returns to the Washington County Fair Complex in Hillsboro with a weekend of carnival rides, live music and entertainment, food and more. Admission is free; individual events may have admission fees.
2013 Oregon International Air Show, July 26-28: The Oregon International Air Show is one of the premier aviation events in the Pacific Northwest, and features some of the best in aviation from all over the United States and Canada. The Entertainment Center, KidZone and Military Village offer exciting displays and fun for kids and adults alike. Local vendors will be on hand selling everything from souvenirs to tasty food. Tickets start at $20 ($25 after July 19); discounts for seniors, military and kids, ages 6-12.
Best of Oregon Food & Wine Festival, August 9-10: The fifth annual Best of Oregon Food & Wine Festival returns to Washington County to showcase Oregon’s culinary culture with dozens of world-class wineries, restaurants and numerous culinary artisans.
Summer Fest & Garlic Out West, August 9-11: Experience two evenings and three days of good music, food, entertainment, and fun at the 2013 Summer Fest & Garlic Out West. This event offers a 10k Run with Oregon Road Runners, a vintage Car Show, old fashioned parade down Main Street and a Pancake Breakfast. Kids can enjoy a full-size playground, exciting inflatables play area and rock wall. Free admission.
Tualatin Crawfish Festival, August 9-10: Celebrate good eating–and the city of Tualatin’s 100th birthday–at the Tualatin Crawfish Festival, the nation’s oldest crawfish festival, west of the Mississippi. This is a two-day, fun-filled family event with a variety of food, entertainment, contests, activities for all ages and more.
Oregon Garlic Festival, August 16-18, and the Annual Banks Bar-B-Que and Truck & Tractor Pull, August 17-19: Formerly known as the North Plains Garlic Festival, the Oregon Garlic Festival will be held in neighboring Banks, Oregon, in conjunction with the annual Banks BBQ and Truck & Tractor Pull. This popular community event must be seen to be believed, and features a combine destruction derby, parade, car show, truck tug-of-war, garden tractors and more. General admission is free. Grandstand admission starts at $10 for adults, $5 for kids, ages 6-16.
Oregon Renaissance Festival, Weekends, Saturday, Aug. 24 – Sunday, Sept. 29: Transport yourself to a 16th century European village at the inaugural Oregon Renaissance Festival, in town for 13 days of merriment. Enjoy talented artists, non-stop stage entertainers, food, crafts, pageantry and encounter beautiful maidens, wandering minstrels, joking jesters and jugglers. Magicians, acrobats, comedians, swordfighters, pirates and fairies will entertain and delight. Be sure to meet the “washing well wenches” and daily performance of an armored jousting. Feast on renaissance-inspired food and drink, including: savory turkey legs, steak on a stake, bangers & mash and chocolate-covered cheesecake.
For a complete list of summer events, including one-day annual events and special events, please visit the WCVA’s Events & Festivals Calendar.
Spring is officially here and the travel season has officially begun! Everywhere you look there are festivals, wine tastings, performances, farmers’ markets and more!
There are numerous reasons to stay at The Grand Hotel Bridgeport, whether it is for business, visiting family and friends, a wedding, a reunion, or just to get away. No matter the reason for being here, we encourage our guests to get out and enjoy what our local community and nearby towns have to offer!
We are of course just minutes from downtown Portland where you will always find a special event or festival, or you can explore some of these local gems (no pun intended!):
- Gem Faire (April 12-14). The renowned marketplace for gemstones, beads, jewelry and more at the Washington County Fair Complex.
- 9th annual Storytelling Festival (April 13-20) featuring professional storytellers, workshops and more! Check site for locations; admission is free.
- North Willamette Wine Trail Weekend (April 13-14) This annual event celebrates the best of Oregon Wine Country and features wine tastings, pairings, and entertainment, tours, hands-on activities, gifts and other locally crafted artisan products.
- Annual Lu’au at Pacific University (April 13) features an authentic Lu’au meal and traditional Polynesian dance, music and entertainment.
- Broadway Rose Theatre Company presents Always…Patsy Cline (April 18 – May 19). Based on a true story, ‘Always…Patsy Cline’ tells the true story of the country music legend’s unlikely friendship with fan Louise Seger and features many of Cline’s timeless hits.
- Favorite 5 Country Farms Spring Tour (April 19-21) Self-guided tour of farms in Sherwood, Tualatin and Wilsonville featuring friendly animals, good food, home & garden decor, art & crafts, antiques and more.
- Every Husband’s Nightmare Bazaar (April 23-27) features more than 100 vendors selling handcrafted gifts, collectibles and antiques, gourmet foods, and garden, floral and seasonal decor.
- Earth Day weekend (April 20-21) Various Earth Day activities and events are scheduled throughout the area.
- “Ed Asner as FDR” (April 21) Ed Asner stars in this one-man show as Franklin Delano Roosevelt for one night only at Pacific University in Forest Grove.
- Faire in the Grove (May 4-5) The whole family with enjoy the merriment at this medieval featuring food, performances, dance, music, storytelling, merchants, and more.
- Tualatin River Bird Festival (May 18) A celebration of wildlife featuring outdoor fun and activities, entertaiment, guided bird walks and more at the Tualatin River National Wildlife Refuge.
Check out the Visit Washington County Visitors Association Events & Festivals Calendar for a complete list of upcoming events. You can also visit the spring performing arts calendar and spring cultural arts calendar for more listings.
Visting Washington County in July? You are in luck! Summer is a wonderful time to visit our region, whether you plan to go shopping, wine tasting, or want enjoy the great outdoors, there is something for everyone.
Bridgeport Village (walking distance from our hotel) will launch a number of activities for the whole family this month including their very popular Summer Concert Series which kicks off July 12 . Vist their Event Center Calendar to learn more.
Here are some other upcoming local events and festivals we found on Washington County Visitors Association:
Oregon Lavender Festival (July 14-15, 2012)
Multiple locations throughout Washington County and neighboring counties. Explore six lavender farms in Washington County as part of this annual Festival: Helvetia Lavender Farm, Jackson School Lavender, Mountainside Lavender, and Seasonal Mary Herb and Flower Farm. Each location will feature specials and events, including u-pick lavender, food infused with lavender, and lavender plants for sale. Admission to the farms is free.
Forest Grove Concours d’Elegance (July 15, 2012)
Pacific University, Forest Grove, OR
Celebrate the Mercedes-Benz at this year’s annual Concours d’Elegance. The show features more than 300 antique and special-interest cars, as well as live music and food booths. Ticket prices range from $5 (youth) – $17 (adults).
Sherwood Robin Hood Festival (July 20-21, 2012)
Old Town, Sherwood, OR
Sherwood continues its signature festival, which celebrates Robin Hood, his Merry Men and Maid Marian. Enjoy Renaissance reenactments, an archery contest, a parade, sword fighting, medieval kids’ area, live music, a beer garden and more. Admission to the festival is free.
Washington County Fair (July 26-29, 2012)
Fair Complex, Hillsboro, OR
This annual county fair includes carnival rides, food, booths, and activities for kids. This year’s fair features shows, such as a truck and tractor pull, draft horse show and monster truck show, as well as a headline performance from Miranda Cosgrove, star of Nickelodeon’s hit series, iCarly, Friday, July 27, at 7:30 p.m. Admission to the fair is free; some events and shows may require separate, paid ticket; tickets to headline act are $20-25.
The Main Course (July 28, 2012)
Main Street, Forest Grove, OR
This unique event showcases local food and wine with an outdoor dinner held on Main Street. Local wineries offer tastings and pairings to top off the fine dining. Participants can choose from a wine and appetizer option or the wine tasting and full dinner. Ticket prices range from $30-80.
Now that the warm weather is finally here, it is time to get out and take in the great outdoors. If hiking or biking isn’t your thing, not to worry. “Festival Going” is a sport too! Visit our post Washington County Oregon Summer Event Highlights to see a list of the top events this summer in Washington Country and Bridgeport Village.
Featured Event: Festival of Balloons in Tigard (June 22-24, 2012)
Cook Park (Tigard, Oregon)
The annual Festival of Balloons in Tigard is a summer tradition. Dozens of balloons take flight in the early morning skies, while several events and activities provide fun for the entire family. Carnival rides, helicopter scenic tours, car show and beer garden are among the festivities planned. Admission, $5-7 for a three-day pass; children ages 6 and under are free; parking is $5.
Featured Festivals in Portland
Portland, Oregon hosts some of the best festivals in the country, and there is no shortage of them in the summer months. As you plan your trip this way, considering heading into town and checking out a few on your own! Here are a just a few of our favorites from the list of annual festivals compiled by www.travelportland.com. Visit their site to see the full listing, including festivals in the Fall, Winter and Spring months.
*Hot Travel Tip*- June is Dining Month in Portland! Enjoy special three-course, prix-fixe dinners at participating restaurants through June 30. Visit www.opentable.com to learn more and to make your reservations.
Oregon Zoo Summer Concerts – June-August
Every summer, fans of folk, rock, world music and more stake out spots on the zoo’s amphitheater lawn, and enjoy performances from some of the hottest, most diverse acts performing today.
Portland Rose Festival – June
The Portland Rose Festival, which celebrated its centennial in 2007, offers three weeks of family events. Highlights include the Rose Festival Grand Floral Parade, the Starlight Parade, a waterfront carnival for families, dragon boat races, concerts and ﬁreworks.
Waterfront Blues Festival – July
The largest blues festival west of the Mississippi River takes place each year during Independence Day week. Portland’s Gov. Tom McCall Waterfront Park sets the stage with top national acts performing over ﬁve days. Large fireworks display on July 4.
The Bite of Oregon – August
Beneﬁtting Special Olympics Oregon, The Bite is one of the “Rose City’s” most popular festivals. Sample food created by local chefs and taste regional wines at the Oregon Wine Garden. Live music by national and local bands, chef demonstrations and family entertainment.
Warmer weather means one thing in Oregon: time to hit the great outdoors! Hopping on your bicycle and hitting one of the many bike paths and trails in our region is nothing less than blissful.
Fortunately for us, there is no shortage of bicycle trains to explore for all levels. Whether you are a seasoned cyclist or a newbie- there is something for everyone here.
Just remember to travel at a safe speed and follow the rules of the road!
L.L. Stub Stewart State Park (featured in the above video), a 1,673 acre park where outdoor lovers are invited to explore more than 20 miles of trails. Bring your horse or bicycle and spend hours exploring the far reaches of the park.
- Be sure to visit the City of Tigard’s new bicycle resource featuring bike maps, links, and a listing of upcoming events.
- Visit the WCVA’s new comprehensive bike map detailing bike trails, lanes and designated paths and routes throughout Washington County,
- Check out rideoregonride.com for featured Itineraries, events, maps, recommendations and more.
- Check out the WCVA list of local Bicycle rental and repair shops