1) Locations and scenery.
From snow-capped mountains, to hot deserts, to lush countryside, to gorgeous forests, to beautiful beaches. Oregon has them all.
2) Lewis and Clark.
This beautiful state wouldn’t even be known if it wasn’t for two brave men who set out from St. Louis, Missouri to discover more of America. And I am privileged to live about an hour away from the beach where Lewis and Clark first saw the Pacific Ocean. Throughout Oregon, you will find trail signs that point to the original route they took on their way to the ocean. Some of my relatives actually live on part of this ‘trail’. Pretty darn cool.
Yes, many people may complain about this, and make statements such as ‘It rains all year round in Oregon’ or ‘Don’t ever leave the house without an umbrella’. But those are both stupid and not true.. It does not rain all year round. And you do not have to take an umbrella with you wherever you go. And anyway, if you’re a real Oregonian, you better not be in possession of an umbrella (without a super good reason, of course). It does rain, but not as often as people make it out to seem. And Oregon isn’t as unpredictable as many people think either (if you want to start pointing fingers at moody-weather states, go visit Oklahoma). And anyway, Oregon is green, literally, all year-round. Thanks to what? Rain.
Also, when you’ve grown up in Oregon and have learned to love the things you cannot change, you learn to love the rain. The mist, the drizzle, the evening rains, the storms. They’re all beautiful in their own ways. The con to rain? Mud.
4) No sales tax.
Seriously. Nobody likes paying taxes. And Oregon residents aren’t charged sales tax. So...I'll just leave that right there.
5) Pumping Gas.
Nope, we don’t pump our own gas. Some people may call us lazy for this, but I call us efficient. We are providing more jobs for people by hiring them to pump our gas. Kind of a win-win situation, if you ask me.
Of course I gotta talk about my home city. From the huge buildings (yes, some of them are considered skyscrapers), to the incredible bookstores, adorable coffee shops (including Stumptown), the amazing Saturday Market, the Portland Spirit cruises along the Columbia River, Voodoo Donuts, food carts, ice cream shops (including Salt & Straw) - this city has basically everything you could want. Not the perfect city, but to me, definitely the best.
7) The Vortex.
Discovered in the 1920’s by a Scottish-born man named John Litster, the Vortex is located in Gold Hill, Oregon. This tourist attraction is an amazing spherical field of force - half above and half below ground. It’s basically a place where everything factual becomes reversed in a tornado of phenomenon. (Read more about it at www.oregonvortex.com)
8) Tillamook Cheese Factory.
If any of you love cheese as much as I do, this little fact about Oregon would excite you too. If you ever get a chance to visit here, you must make it a priority to visit Tillamook. Not only is it near the ocean, but you get to taste-test freshly made cheeses - oh and don’t forget to get an ice cream cone on your way out!
I’ve always been fascinated with different languages and cultures and ethnicities. And I think Oregon has one of the most diverse populations of all the states I’ve been to.
10) Dutch Brothers.
I’m gonna end this post with a point that has to be one of my absolutely favorite things about Oregon. And if any of you know me or have been reading my blog for a while, you won’t be surprised by it. Dutch Brothers was founded in 1992 in Grants Pass, Oregon by dairy farmer brothers, Dane and Travis Boersma. What began as a simple little pushcart espresso stand, this amazing coffee company now has over 200 locations in Oregon, Washington, Idaho, California, Colorado, Nevada, and Arizona. If you ever stop by one, ask for one of my favorites - either an Italian Soda (ask for all their flavors), or a Kicker (delicious hot or iced)...or a layered caramelized macchiato...or one of their delicious fruit smoothies.