Happy Birthday to Oregon

OregoncakeWhile the rest of the country wallows in sugary hearts and roses, native Oregonians know that the real holiday today is Oregon's Statehood Day. Granted statehood on February 14, 1859, our state is 147 years old.

Two simple questions that should provoke complex answers:

What does Oregon mean to you? Why do you live in Oregon - rather than somewhere else?


  • Becky (unverified)

    I fell in love with Oregon when I came here to visit at the age of 10 (it was my 10th birthday, actually). When my husband and I married, we soon realized that he had also fallen in love with it on a childhood visit. Within two weeks, we had moved here.

    We both love Oregon for the same reason. It's absolutely gorgeous. We have access to the great outdoors, both ocean and mountains. We can fish and hunt and camp and hike whenever we want to. Ane even the city is green, something that strikes me every time I fly in from somewhere else. Oregon is heaven. It's that simple.

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    I grew up in Oregon, but did my college years in Los Angeles. To me, I love Oregon because I can get from the heart of the city to the country or the forest in less than an hour. Compact urban development that doesn't sacrifice our wild places and our countryside.

  • Kernunrex (unverified)

    I was born and still live in the Midwest, but I'm thinking of moving out to Oregon. I like the climate - in both the meteorological and politcal senses.

    I checked out the Eugene/Springfield and Medford/Ashland areas last time I took a trip out there. Anyone have suggestions for small, blue towns I should visit next time? My goal is to live somewhat out in the country, but not too far from some kind of medium-or-small city (Portland, for example, is way too large for me).

  • iggir (unverified)

    i second Kari...the deep South and the East Coast seem like hell to me.

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    I was born in Portland (at Emanuel), but left when I was 7 to move with my family to the DC area. I spent 27 years on the East Coast before returning. It was a family reunion in 1996 that re-sparked my love for Oregon and PDX in particular. Not least of the appeal was the fact that during our visit, we went out to Edgefield for lunch on a day when the mercury topped 100 degrees. While hot, it was still less onerous than 85 degree days with 80% humidity in VA. And man, was it beautiful. The things I loved about it as a kid were still there, and the sensibilities REALLY appealed to me as an adult, I discovered. It was just a cool fockin' town. My only regret is that I didn't get to spend my 20s--childless and perhaps even single--living downtown or out Hawthorne, having fun.

    Portland (and Oregon) don't always get things right. But they always try, and they always recognize the appeal of trying to work things out for the common. That spirit of interconnectedness does not exist in many other places in the US. So much of the country has become "Let me do my thing; don't bother me with YOUR problems" in its outlook. I love that one of the few things that makes you uncool in Oregon is civic apathy.

    Happy Birthday, Oregon! "Where Mother Nature Overdid It"

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    I'm a native Oregonian. I've done my share of travelling around the country and I have yet to find anyplace like Oregon. California and Hawaii have beautiful, sunny beaches, but they're nothing like the Oregon coast. New England is gorgeous in the fall, but too damned hot in the summer and too damned cold in the winter, the South, while full of interesting history, lacks any sort of scenic character (nevermind the political and cultural differences). I think Oregon is really the one-stop-shop for everything you need in a great place to live. We have our issues, and we all have different ideas on what needs fixing or how it should be fixed... but that's what makes it interesting. I just couldn't imagine living anywhere else.

  • Joanne R (unverified)

    I was born and raised in Portland. I used to think that this was a great state as far as how it treats its rural, hunting and fishing communities, but having moved out to the country and lived on a farm for the last 15 years, I've changed my mind. Everyone likes to tout how we have all these wonderful resources, and we do, in this state, but to actually use them, is something else unless you have plenty of money for parking fees, user permits, you don't dare park somewhere along a stream to go fishing without the proper parking paperwork, or you'll get towed, and deer/elk hunting are a joke. If you want to go east you have to enter a lottery. The only reason I'm still here is my father, so I can take care of him when he needs it at the end of his life. After that I'm off to rural Missourri. Want to hunt? How does 6 deer tags a year sound? No drawing. You can only do that if there are deer to hunt, lots of them. Want to fish? How does a 9' minimun size on crappy sound? I caught so many fish in a 3 hour period I got tired. Now that's fishing. I'd stay here, but I've had it up to here with the greenies over reaching regs. Our farm alsmost got pulled into a greenbelt a few years ago so the yuppies in Portland could have a 'purdy drive in the country' on the weekends. That really was the last straw. I miss the Oregon of my youth....

  • Bill Holmer (unverified)

    Why I love Oregon: Rugged individualism and self-reliance of its citizens Physical beauty and temperate climate My favorite color is green and all its various shades, which our landscape provides in abundance Successful independent businesses, i.e. non-chains, from Powell's, to a plethora of superb restaurants, to boutique hotels Great jazz, and a healthy arts community Relatively clean politics and government Air that's so clean and fresh, you want to breathe deeply No sales tax, even though it costs me more The Oregonian (for all its flaws it's better than any newspaper north of LA and east of NY)

  • Bill Holmer (unverified)

    Correction: Better than any newspaper north of LA and west of NY

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    The Oregonian (for all its flaws it's better than any newspaper north of LA and west of NY)


    Denver Post SF Chronicle Chicago Tribune ...and counting.

  • Bill Holmer (unverified)


    In the spirit of respectful commentary:

    OK, I'll grant you the Chicago Tribune may surpass the Oregonian (at least as measured by Pulitzer Prizes in the last 10 years, 6 to 3).

    However, the S.F. Comical only won 2 and the Denver Post 1 in the same period.

    Keep counting!

    I'd still rather read the Oregonian in Portland than the Tribune in Chicago, any day.

  • apcow (unverified)

    Summer of 2001 I decided I'd visit every city in Oregon, in alphabetical order, from Adair Village to Zigzag. I was hanging out in that weird restaurant on the bay in Charleston, and the thought of heading all the way back across the state to Chiloquin was weighing on both me and my Honda pretty heavily. Crab cakes weren't on the menu, but the owner/chef was nice enough to make them for me anyway. Although they tasted like cardboard with tartar sauce, I appreciated the effort. I was checking my oil in the parking lot when a giant RV--complete with trailer towing a ford expulsion and Florida plates--pulled up next to me. These two 45ish women hop out and walk over to the little bay there. One of them has a Nascar hat on and the other one looks pretty normal except she's wearing shorts that are way too short and tight for her body. In the span of less than one second, the nascar hat lady throws her empty pepsi cup into the inlet just as the too-short-shorts lady slips on an oyster shell and hits her face on the bridge abuttment and when she picked herself up there's blood streaking down the right side of her cheek. The drive to Chiloquin seemed to go by in like 10 minutes.
    I fell in love with Oregon before I was born. But I stay in love with Oregon because she keeps reminding me why I should love her. In mysterious and hilarious ways. Here's to 147 more.

  • Charlie in Gresham (unverified)

    Kari....drop the SF Chronicle from your list.....it's a mere shadow of it's former greatness. You might add the Minneapolis Star Tribune in it's place.

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