The Oregon Coast Trail extends from Washington to California, providing hikes and
access to Oregon’s public beaches, all the
way up and down the state. Oregon is one
of the few states whose beaches are entirely
open to the public.
EDUCATION AND MORE
Portland attracts an educated crowd —
91.6% of residents who are 25 and older
have at least a high school degree and 47%
have a bachelor’s degree or higher.
Six school districts make up the city
of Portland, including Parkrose, David
Douglas, Centennial, Reynolds, Riverdale, and Portland Public. There are about
50,000 kids attending the Portland school
district, covering 90% of the city’s school-aged children — a better percentage than
most urban areas.
Portland State University (PSU) is
based on the southern edge of downtown. PSU is Oregon’s largest university
with an enrollment of just under 28,000
Oregon Health & Science University
(OHSU) is a respected institution for its
medical, nursing, and dental divisions.
The hillside campus includes two hospitals, and can be reached by an aerial
There’s no sales tax: The price on the tag is the price you
pay in Portland, Oregon. Our neighbors in Washington
often hop the border to make use of Oregon’s tax free
You’re probably mispronouncing “Couch” and “
Willamette”: Couch rhymes with “pooch.” Portlanders will
immediately identify a newcomer if they want to meet
for drinks on “couch”, as in that piece of furniture in
your living room. Willamette is pronounced “will-AM-it”.
Willamette Valley Vineyards sells t-shirts that read, “It’s
Portland’s iconic drinking fountains are called “Benson
Bubblers”: These iconic drinking fountains can be
found around the downtown area, continuously
pumping clean drinking water out of their upturned
copper bowls. There are 52 of the fountains, and 74
of the one-bowl varieties, mostly concentrated in the
Vancouver boasts the oldest apple tree in the Pacific
Northwest: A region renowned for its tree fruits and
berries. Planted at Fort Vancouver in 1826, the venerable
Old Apple Tree is considered the matriarch of Washington state’s apple industry. The 192-year-old tree still
produces some fruit and is celebrated each year with a
fall festival that features live music, cider pressing, tree
care workshops and a limited number of tree cuttings
from the Old Apple Tree.
Vancouver is a dry town: Though it has a reputation for
soggy weather, Vancouver’s average annual rainfall is
39 inches, lower than many other major cities, including
Atlanta, Baltimore, Houston, Indianapolis, Nashville and
Portland is home to the world’s largest independent
book store: Powell’s City of Books, located on Burnside
in downtown Portland, claims to be the largest independent bookstore in the world, offering both used and new
options. The stacks of shelves occupy one city block
— that’s 68,000 square feet of books. Better get reading!
There’s an extinct volcano within city limits: Mt. Tabor is
a volcanic cone, with a park on top, located at the far
Southeast part of town. It’s a popular place for hiking,
bike riding, and watching the sunset over the city.
Clark County is home to the Stars: Clark County is the
birthplace of sports stars, an astronaut and a professional
wrestler. NBA players Richie Frahm and Dan Dickau
are natives, as is former Seattle Mariner Richie Sexson,
who graduated from Prairie High School in Brush Prairie.
Camas boasts both NASCAR driver Greg Biffle and
astronaut Mike Barratt, who spent more than 200 days on
the International Space Station and was part of the final
voyage of the space shuttle Discovery. And Vancouver is
the birthplace of Sarona Snuka-Polamalu – stage name
Tamina – who has been a professional wrestler with WWE
It’s illegal to pump your own gas: An attendant will
be right with you. Don’t touch that pump in Oregon.
Otherwise you could be subject to a $500 fine.
Home to the Clark County Fair: At 150 years old, the
Clark County Fair is one of the oldest and largest fairs
in the metro area, with an annual attendance of more
than 270,000 people. It was started in Esther Short Park in
October 1868, moved to Battle Ground in the 1920s and
moved to its location just north of Vancouver in 1955,
where it is still held every August.
Portland has become a trendy place to talk about in recent years. Even if you’ve never been, you probably have
an impression of what Portland is like, thanks to popular TV shows like Portlandia. While many of the jokes about
Portland are spot on, there’s a lot to learn about Portland, so here’s a list of things you didn’t know about Portland.
You Likely Didn’t Know
About Greater Portland