Ask anyone who has lived or visited Oregon; this is a fantastic place to live, work and play. There is a reason why Oregon is a popular U.S. travel destination. We love our mountains, valleys, rivers, lush, rugged coast, arid plains and fertile fields. I think Travel Oregon sums it up best:
Why Oregon? Because Oregonians are wild, adventurous and inquisitive. Oregon is a place where people often find themselves roaming endlessly with no other goal than the next great meal, powdery slope, lighthouse view or salmon run. We encourage you to approach Oregon the way Oregonians do, with a sense of humor and adventure. So giddy-up! You’ve got some Oregon exploring to do…
So here are some facts about our state (compiled by Travel Oregon) that you may know have known:
• Oregon is the 10th largest state in the union, covering 97,073 square miles.
• The population of Oregon is only 3.4 million, with 1.5 million living in the Portland area.
• Oregon has no sales tax.
• Oregon’s birthday is Valentine’s Day, February 14, 1859
• The highest elevation point is Mt. Hood at 11,239 feet, and the lowest is at sea level.
• There are more than 6,000 lakes and 112,000 miles of rivers and streams.
• Oregon contains more than 5,900 registered campsites along with 230 state parks and 13 national forests.
• Nearly half of Oregon’s total area is forested – close to 30 million acres.
• There are 16 known hot springs in Oregon.
• At 1,932 feet, Crater Lake, located in Southern Oregon is the deepest lake in the United States.
• Located in the Northeastern corner of the state, Hells Canyon is the deepest river-carved gorge in North America. At 7,900 feet, it’s deeper than the Grand Canyon.
• The John Day Fossil Beds National Monument is one of the richest fossil bed sites in the world.
• In the Klamath Forest National Wildlife Refuge, visitors can view more than 1,000 majestic bald eagles – the largest concentration of wintering bald eagles in the U.S.
• The Malheur National Wildlife Refuge is home to the largest freshwater marsh in the U.S.
• Oregon has 12 commercial downhill ski areas, with 400 trails in three mountain ranges.
• Naturally carved within an outcropping of solid marble, Oregon Caves National Monument is one of southern Oregon’s oldest attractions.
• Oregon has four National Historic Trails and 14 National Historic Districts.
• Oregon has more than 7,000 bridges, including 53 covered bridges.
• There are nine lighthouses and one light ship along the Oregon Coast.
• Oregon is pronounced OR-UH-GUN, never OR-EE-GONE.
• There are currently 17 ghost towns in Oregon.
• The Oregon hazelnut is the state’s official nut, and Oregon grows 99 percent of the entire U.S. commercial crop.
• The pear is Oregon’s state fruit, ranking as the top-selling tree fruit crop.
• There are more than 700 vineyards in Oregon, planted on about 13,700 acres. In the 2004 vintage, there were 19,400 tons of wine grapes harvested, and nearly 1.2 million cases of wine made. Oregon produces more than 40 different varietals of wine grapes.
• Letting an attendant pump your gas is mandatory; you may not pump your own in the state of Oregon.
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
Oregon travelers and food lovers have a good reason to celebrate! On August 23, Travel Oregon launched the The Oregon Bounty Wanderfeast. Oregon Bounty is a statewide promotion that celebrates Oregon’s culinary abundance and the fall harvest season.
“The intimacy of our culinary scene is one of the incredible, relatively undiscovered aspects of Oregon,” said Travel Oregon’s Director of Brand Strategy, Holly Macfee. “It’s one of the few states where you can eat or drink right alongside the producers that grow, make or cook the ingredients. Fall is one of the best times of year for Oregon foodie travel since many of the products are at their peak.”
From August 23rd through November 30th, Oregon Bounty highlights unique travel experiences, fall events and the state’s chefs, winemakers, brewers, farmers and culinary artisans. For a complete list of celebration information, contest rules and to enter, visit www.Traveloregon.com/Bounty.