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Now that we're travelling with a toddler in tow, we always need to take into account her happiness and enjoyment. For our trip to Oregon, I decided it would be special if we could take one whole afternoon and dedicate it to her. Thanks to the other friendly people here on Virtual Tourist I read up on the Portland's Children Museum. I'd been wanting to take our little one to one for a while, and this seemed like the perfect chance. At only 15 months old, she was able to enjoy most of what the museum had to offer. We paid just over $30 for parking + all three of us to get into the Museum. We all played for hours and the little one left exhausted and content.
It was such a great place to help her learn and discover, while playing at the same time. I know if we go back, we would definitely go again as I can only imagine she will discover it all in a completely new way as she get's older. PLUS, it's located right next to the Zoo so if you get a nice day and head there extra early you really could make it a full day excursion with lots to see and do as a family!
Written Nov 15, 2012
Address: 4015 SW Canyon Road Portland, OR 97221
Phone: (503) 223-6500
The farmers market on Saturday morning in the St. John's area of Portland is a little charmer of a farmers market. Local fruits, vegetables, cheese, meats, seafood, sausages...even wine. From June thru October.
Written Sep 10, 2012
Address: Lombard and Philadelphia
We took a little day trip from Portland to see some falls that were near by. You can reach Wahkenna and Multnomah Falls about 30 mins out of Portland. And the falls are pretty close off the exit. The trails and the falls are just beautiful. I was told that March begins the rainy time of the year and this time is the best time to see the falls. The Wahkenna Falls in this photo are a quick and easy trip to the top, less than a quarter mile hike. I loved how mossy the rocks were!
Wahkenna Falls are about 242 ft and empty into the Colmbia River Gorge. They are located off of the Colmbia River High way.
Written Mar 8, 2012
Address: About 5 minutes off 84
Reed College dates to 1908 and is a true liberal arts school where all students gain an extensive introduction in to classical studies – Greece, Rome, biblical and Judaica. It is also the only school in the U.S. that boasts a nuclear reactor that is completely operated by undergraduate students. Following a qualifying exam in the junior year, all students must complete a senior thesis project. Upon the completion of the thesis, the student must be able to orally answer questions about their project but also about any other they have taken during the course of their studies at the school. The school has long been known as a center for anti-authoritarian progressivism – the unofficial motto used to be “communism, atheism and free love” though recent moves have been to amend that to “socialism, agnosticsm and safe sex” in honor of the changing mores of the 21st century. The lack of varsity athletic teams and fraternities was a deliberate act of protest against the prevailing Ivy league education model of the early 20th century. Reed is normally considered to fall within the top ranks of liberal arts colleges in the U.S. – it is certainly a demanding school and is as expensive as any others in the upper echelons, too. A high percentage of Reedies go on to earn doctorates or other advanced degrees after graduation.
The campus covers some 116 acres and the original model was based on St John’s College at Oxford. Original campus buildings include the Library, the Old Dorm Block and Eliot Hall – the administrative center for the school. The architectual style is a brick Tudor Gothic, complete with griffon downspouts – the griffon is the school mascot – while in contrast, the science buildings were designed later in a Modernist style. Most students live on campus in one of the 18 residence halls, most of which are separated from the main campus by the forested Reed College Canyon. The canyon is a natural and wildlife preserve filled in large part by Reed Lake which is formed by a small dam on Crystal Creek. The Blue Bridge spans the lake connecting the northside dormitories with the main campus. So-called “Blue” for the black lights that are used to illuminate the pathway over the bridge at night.
Written Oct 20, 2011
M. Lloyd Frank brought in New York architect Herman Brookman in the early 1920’s to design an estate for his family in the southwestern hills above Portland. Brookman developed the plans and construction began in 1924 with the Manor house being completed in 1926 and the grounds finalized in 1929. The cost was $1.3 million with $65,000 going towards the buildings – Albany College would be allowed to purchase the entire estate for the gift price of only $42,000 in 1942. Brookman would continue his career in Portland and several of his buildings can still be found adorning the local landscape: Temple Beth Israel in Northwest Portland; Harry Green/Bitar Mansion in Laurlehurst; Menucha, the former estate of Julius Meier – from the other half of the Meier & Frank story and also Oregon’s first Jewish governor – which is today an ecumenical retreat owned by the First Presbyterian Church of Portland and can be found at the west end of the Columbia River Gorge not far from Crown Point.
Written Oct 20, 2011
Lewis & Clark College is a private school tucked away on top of Portland’s West Hills in the southwestern part of the city. The school of some nearly 2,000 undergraduates and almost 1,500 postgraduate students is centered around the magnificent grounds that made up the 1920’s M. Lloyd Frank estate known as Fir Acres. The home was built in 1926 with the grounds being completed in 1929. It was designed by New York architect Herman Brookman who would go on to designing several other gorgeous buildings in the area and also call Portland his home. The Frank family – two German brothers Emil and Sigismund – combined in the latter half of the 19th century with the Aaron Meier family to found the most successful department store in Oregon – Meier & Frank, which is today part of the Macy’s chain of stores. The house became vacant in 1935 after a divorce and the whole place quickly became overgrown. In June 1942, the Albany College – looking to relocate their campus from Albany some 60 miles to the south – purchased the estate for a bargain price. The school was renamed Lewis & Clark College in honor of the pioneer spirit which hopefully will continue to push in directions of discovery that motivated the two earlier famous explorers. In recent years, Lewis & Clark has expanded beyond its arts and science undergraduate focus to include a law school and a graduate School of Education and Counselling.
The Frank Manor House is the administrative center today for the school. Most teaching buildings are arrayed to the northwest and below the Manor. The campus center and student housing – students spend at least their first two years on campus unless they already live in Portland – can be found to the southeast. Directly west from the Manor is the Agnes Flanagan Chapel. The conical shape reflects the influence of local Native American culture with sculpted figures of the four evangelists – Matthew, Mark, Luke and John – also carrying a Native theme. The sculptures flank a bridge which leads into the chapel. The school began as a Presbyterian institution in 1858 in Albany – one of four Oregon colleges which predate Oregon’s Statehood – but today is non-affliated and the chapel serves as an ecumenical hall hosting several different worship services, as well as other non-religious events. At the center of the chapel is a magnificent pipe organ built by Casavant Freres of Quebec featuring 85 ranks. The pipeworks are suspended spectacularly from the center of the chapel ceiling.
Yes, Monica Lewinsky is an alumnus of the college.
Written Oct 20, 2011
My friends and I like good beer, and being in Portland, it's a little overwhelming to decide which brewery to go to- with over 40 within city limits. This brewery tour is awesome because it picks you up, brings you up, and brings you around town to taste different beer. At each place there are at least 4 different beers to sample, plus a behind the scenes tour of the establishment by the brewer himself! He showed us the whole brewing process and explained what makes NW beer so good. We even got to taste beer poured straight off the zwickle in the cooler. We ate lunch at one of the breweries and the food was delicious too. It was fun to hang out with a group of people that have the same interests. The breweries were all in different neighborhoods, so riding in the bus from one to another was like a tour of the whole city. NW beer is different from the rest. And now I know why!
Written May 6, 2011
Address: Portland, OR
Phone: 503 729 6804
We loved this fantastic children's museum. The best part of the museum was the water works exhibit. It's a giant structure loaed with cranks, funnels, conveyor belts and just about everything else a child could possibly want to play with water. The coolest part about it is a 12 foot high water fall. I almost wasn't able to get Patrick out of here. He wasn't into the class room exhibit or the mirror, mirrow exhibit. He did like the building exhibit which allows children to act like real contruction workers.
The museum is closed on Mondays but open Tuesday-Saturday 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM and 11:00 AM to 5:00 PM on Sundays.
Admission is $7.00 for most people and parking costs an additonal $1.00.
Updated Apr 4, 2011
Address: 4015 S.W. Canyon Road Opposite Oregon Zoo
This is one of the most beautiful rose gardens I have been to yet, although I have to admit that I felt it to be quite over crowded. When I came here late last may, the spring roses were in full bloom and the frangrance was out of this world. There were so many varieties that I can't keep what was what with the pictures straight.
The International Rose Test Garden was established in 1917 due to the efforts of Jesse Currey and her fellow rose lovers. Jesse, a trustee of the American Rose Society, convinced local officials in 1915 to establish this beautiful garden to provide a safe place for hybrid roses from Europe during World War I. Her fellow rose enthusiasts and rose growers sent roses from many countries making the rose garden an instant success. As a result, the city of Portland issued the first annual Gold Medal Award for best new rose variety in 1919. Every year there is a one day judging held by rose experts during the month of June. To date Portland is the only remaining US city issuing this award. Portland also has another rose award called Portlands Best Rose which began being awarded in 1996. The International Rose Test Garden became an offical testing site for the All America Rose Selection (AARS) in 1940; there are only 24 such gardens nationwide. Before being awarded the AARS seal of approval plants are evaluated over a two year period on 14 characteristics including plant habit, vigor, disease resistance, color, flower production, form, foliage, and fragrance.
Entrance to the magnificient garden is free and there is even a self guided tour guide available at:
The garden is located on 4.5 acres of land, has over 550 varities of roses and over 6800 blooming bushes during the season. Over 500 thousand people visit the rose garden each year. This is a very romantic place and often weddings are held amongst the blooms.
Updated Apr 4, 2011
Address: 400 SW Kingston, In Washington Park
The Vista House was built in the early 1900’s at a cost of approx. $100,000. It stands upon Crown Point at 733 feet above the Columbia River. The Vista House offers a sensational view of the Gorge both to the East and West. The building houses a very small gift shop and a small museum with images of the Vista House. The main floor gives you access to the upper observation deck that wraps around the Vista House. It’s such a great place to stop and take in the wonders that nature provides us with.
Updated Apr 4, 2011
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