Category Archives: Places to Go

3 ways to kick off the perfect Oregon summer

This is our city’s time to shine. Summer is Oregon’s reward to its citizens for all those gray months. And it’s catnip to tourists who you’ll no doubt be entertaining.

Here’s a breakdown of just a few of the must-dos in Downtown Portland as well as a long list of the lesser known goings-on inside and outside of Portland that shouldn’t be overlooked.

1. PIONEER COURTHOUSE SQUARE EVENTS

It’s called “Portland’s Living Room” for a reason. During the summer it’s rare to find the Square not teeming with music, flowers or food.

flicks on the bricksSome of our favorite events include:

Noon Tunes. Otherwise known as the perfect lunch hour. Enjoy free concerts every Tuesday and Thursday from July 15 to August 14.

Flicks on the Bricks is great way to spend an evening downtown. Come see the Square magically transformed into Portland’s largest outdoor movie theater! Live pre-movie entertainment begins at 7 p.m. every Friday from July 26 to August 16.

Yoshida’s Sand in the City. No time to go to the Coast? Then come to Portland’s biggest beach party. Sand in the City takes over the Square on July 18-20.

Finally, Festa Italiana brings Italy to Downtown Portland with lots of spirited entertainment and food from August 21 to 23.

2. OPEN MARKETS

Our area is known for its outdoor markets and every year they just keep getting bigger and better.

Farmers Market Here are three that can’t be beat:

Portland Saturday Market: A lot more than tie-dye and patchouli can be found at this downtown market which has become the largest outdoor arts and crafts market in operation with well over 200 booths. The food stalls and live music alone make the Saturday Market worth the visit. (Open Saturday and Sunday through December 24)

Portland Farmers Market: With eight locations all over Portland there are more than enough opportunities to see what foods you might fall in love with this summer. The most popular location is on the PSU campus at SW Park Avenue and SW Montgomery Street. There any Saturday you can visit over 130 booths of deliciousness. (Saturdays through December 20)

Beaverton Farmers Market: Open since 1998, Beaverton Farmers Market has been around even longer than Portland’s Farmers Market and it has just as many booths! (8 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., May to November)

3. TRANSIT TO TRAILS

Enjoy the mild temperatures and rainless days while you can!Transit to TrailsThe Portland metropolitan area has more than 10,000 acres of parks and natural areas. Here are some of our favorite trails from North Portland to Tualatin to Buxton and a lot of points in between that you can visit by taking TriMet.

Of course this is just a very short list of some of the top must-dos. Even though the Rose Festival is over there are more than enough events to keep you busy until September! So enjoy the summer and let TriMet help make your trips easier.

Your comprehensive list of summer events

 

Spring Break Staycation Guide

cherryblossomSpring is here! Save on major travel expenses like airline tickets, lodging, gas and meals by taking a spring break “staycation”. Pick up a 1-Day Pass (only $5 each) and let us take you out to explore these local attractions that are ideal for keeping money in your pocket.

Go old-school and become a tourist
See the city through a visitor’s eyes and do what they do. Visit the Portland Art Museum, OMSI, the Portland Japanese Garden or the Zoo. Maybe it’s trying Dim Sum in Chinatown or roller skating at Oaks Park. Always sure to please is the Portland Saturday Market, with arts and crafts in its open-air marketplace.

Spend a day at a park
There are no shortages of parks in Portland. Pack a picnic, blanket and chairs. Spread out and let the kids run around while you sit back and relax. Take TriMet to one of many trails and parks in the area.

Swim day
Sure, spring break in Portland often means dodging rain, but it doesn’t mean you can’t pretend you’re in Maui and enjoy a day at the pool. Find an indoor community pool and dive in.

Find what’s fresh at a farmers market
Head to your local farmers market for some fresh and colorful fruits and veggies. Get the kids in on the fun and have them choose what to buy for dinner!

Get lost
In places such as Powell’s Books or Forest Park, it’s easy to wander and get lost. Bring the kids, dog, friends or family for an outing you’re sure to enjoy.

Paradise-bound
If you are heading out of town for spring break, let us take you to PDX or Union Station.

Plan your trip
It’s easy to explore Portland on TriMet over spring break. Check out the many other destinations you can discover on buses, MAX Light Rail, WES Commuter Rail and Portland Streetcar.
Plan a trip today!

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Holiday events to get you in the spirit of the season

Holiday tree at Pioneer Courthouse SquareFrom Santaland to the Grotto’s Festival of Lights to ZooLights, there is an abundance of holiday events to help you get in the spirit of the season. Pick up some 1-Day Passes or use our mobile ticketing app (for your smartphone) and let us take you there!

Holiday Connections
December 5-7
A treasured Portland tradition for all families, the Portland Gay Men’s Chorus sing a rich array of seasonal music. Plan your trip

The Portland Bazaar
December 6-8
From woodworkers, metalsmiths and cutting-edge fashion designers to bakers and chefs, the Portland Bazaar is a curated holiday fair that celebrates the high-quality handmade work being produced by Portland’s creative community. Plan your trip

Photo courtesy of Dick Thies

Christmas ships light up the night

Christmas Ship Parade
December 6-21
2013 marks the 59th year for the Christmas Ship Parade on the Columbia and Willamette Rivers. An average of about 55 to 60 boats sail between the two rivers.

Santa on the Bricks
December 12-23, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
December 24, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Head to Pioneer Courthouse Square to give Santa your wishlist. Enjoy heated warming tents with chestnuts on the fire, roasted almonds and hot chocolate. Plan your trip

Tuba Christmas
December 14
Pioneer Courthouse Square hosts more than 250 tubas performing holiday songs. Tuba Christmas has become a Portland tradition and unites our musical community as we celebrate the season. Plan your trip

Breakfast with Santa
December 14 and 21
Join Santa for breakfast at Bridgeport Village. 100% of ticket sales will be donated to charity. Plan your trip

George Balanchine's The Nutcracker, Oregon Ballet Theatre, Photo by Blaine Truitt CovertGeorge Balanchine's The Nutcracker, Oregon Ballet Theatre, Photo by Blaine Truitt Covert

George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker, Oregon Ballet Theatre, Photo by Blaine Truitt Covert

The Nutcracker
December 14-24
Take a trip into a land where toy soldiers fight rat armies, snowflakes come dancing to life and the sugarplum fairy rules with the wave of her wand. The Nutcracker promises to create memories your family will cherish forever. Plan your trip

 

 

The Lights on Peacock Lane
December 15-31
For many people, going to see the lights on Peacock Lane–Portland’s Christmas Street–is a must during the holidays. The lane has been known for some of the most impressive Christmas decorations in Portland since the 1920s. Have you joined in on the tradition yet? Plan your trip

Santaland
Through December 24
The tradition of visiting Santaland and sitting with Santa as you share your Christmas wishlist continues at the Macy’s store in Downtown Portland. Have you been naughty or have you been nice? Plan your trip

Peek-a-boo Santa

Peek-a-boo Santa

Santa at Pioneer Place Mall
Through December 24
Bring your little ones to sit with Santa and capture the enchanting moment with a picture. Plan your trip

Santa at Clackamas Town Center
Through December 24
Santa has made his way from the North Pole and is ready to greet children of all ages. Be ready with your Christmas list in hand! Plan your trip

Santa at Washington Square Mall
Through December 24
Visit Santa at his holiday lodge. Sit on the jolly man’s lap and get a picture to commemorate the holiday. Plan your trip

Photo courtesy of Craig PaupFestival of Lights at The Grotto
Through December 30
The Grotto’s Christmas Festival of Lights is the largest Christmas choral festival in the world. With over 500,000 lights, nearly 180 choral performances, a petting zoo, carolers, puppet shows and hot chocolate for you and your whole family, what’s not to enjoy? Plan your trip

 

 

 

ZooLightsZooLights Glenn Peters
Through January 5, 2014
No ZooLights 12/24 and 12/25
More than a million LED lights transform the Oregon Zoo into a luminous winter wonderland filled with moving sculptures, forests of lighted trees and animal silhouettes. If you ride the bus or MAX to the Zoo, you can get $1.50 per person off ZooLights admission. Plan your trip

Holiday events to get you in the spirit of the season

Are you heading to any holiday events this season? Gather your friends or scoop up the family, grab some 1-Day Passes and enjoy one of these holiday events. From Santaland to the Grotto’s Festival of Lights to ZooLights, there’s an abundance of family fun happening all over town. Let us get you there and back, without the hassles of traffic, parking and gas.

Christmas Ship Parade
December 7-21

2012 marks the 58th year for the Christmas Ship Parade on the Columbia and Willamette Rivers. An average of about about 55 to 60 boats sail between the two rivers.

Photo courtesy of Mark Stalcup

Photo courtesy of Mark Stalcup

Santa on the Bricks
December 7-24

Don’t bother with long lines to visit Santa this year. The day you plan to visit Santa, enter the virtual line via web, text, phone or in person at Santa’s House. You’ll be given an approximate wait time so you’re free to roam. Plan your trip

Tuba Christmas
December 8

Pioneer Courthouse Square hosts more than 225 tubas performing holiday songs. Tuba Christmas has become a Portland tradition and unites our musical community as we celebrate the season. Plan your trip

The Portland Bazaar
December 8-9

From woodworkers, metalsmiths and cutting-edge fashion designers to bakers and chefs, the Portland Bazaar is a curated holiday fair that celebrates the high-quality handmade work being produced by Portland’s creative community. Plan your trip

 

George Balanchine's The Nutcracker, Oregon Ballet Theatre, Photo by Blaine Truitt CovertGeorge Balanchine's The Nutcracker, Oregon Ballet Theatre, Photo by Blaine Truitt Covert

George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker, Oregon Ballet Theatre, Photo by Blaine Truitt CovertGeorge Balanchine’s The Nutcracker, Oregon Ballet Theatre, Photo by Blaine Truitt Covert

The Nutcracker
December 8-23

Take a trip into a land where toy soldiers fight rat armies, snowflakes come dancing to life and the sugarplum fairy rule with the wave of a wand. The Nutcracker promises to create memories your family will cherish forever. Plan your trip

The Most Wonderful Season
December 14-16

The Portland Gay Men’s Chorus sing music in a rich array from Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Solstice, and the New Year. A treasured Portland tradition for all families. Plan your trip

 

Photo courtesy of Cesar Pinera

Photo courtesy of Cesar Pinera

Chanukah Menorah Lighting
December 14

Join Director Park and the Chabad of Oregon for this fun community event as they light the candles on the Menorah in observance of the eight days of Chanukah. Free latkes and dreidels for all who join in the festivity!
Plan your trip

Breakfast with Santa
December 15

Join Santa for breakfast at Bridgeport Village. 100% of ticket sales will be donated to charity. Plan your trip

The Lights on Peacock Lane
December 15-31

For many people, going to see the lights on Peacock Lane–Portland’s Christmas Street is a must during the holidays. The lane has been known for some of the most impressive Christmas decorations in Portland since the 1920s. Have you joined in on the tradition yet? Plan your trip

 

Photo courtesy of Brian Latta

Photo courtesy of Brian Latta

Santaland
Through December 24

The tradition of visiting Santaland and sitting with Santa as you share your Christmas wishlist continues at the Macy’s store in Downtown Portland. Have you been naughty or have you been nice? Plan your trip

Santa at Clackamas Town Center
Through December 24

Santa has made his way from the North Pole and is ready to greet children of all ages. Be ready with your Christmas list in hand! Plan your trip

Santa at Washington Square Mall
Through December 24

Visit Santa at his holiday lodge. Sit on the jolly man’s lap and get a picture to commemorate the holiday. Plan your trip

Holidate
Through December 27

Every Thursday this month, enjoy special events in stores and restaurants and live merry music sponsored by Portland Mall Management, Inc. Plan your trip

Festival of Lights at The Grotto
Through December 30

The Grotto’s Christmas Festival of Lights is the largest Christmas choral festival in the world. With over 500,000 lights, nearly 180 choral performances, a petting zoo, carolers, puppet shows and hot chocolate for you and your whole family, what’s not to enjoy? Plan your trip

 

Photo courtesy of Jill Guccini

Photo courtesy of Jill Guccini

ZooLights
Through December 31

More than a million LED lights transform the Oregon Zoo into a luminous winter wonderland filled with moving sculptures, forests of lighted trees and animal silhouettes. If you ride the bus or MAX to the Zoo, you can get $1.50 per person off ZooLights admission.
Plan your trip

Ride with us to tree lighting events

Lit-up holiday tree in Pioneer Courthouse Square

Lit-up holiday tree in Pioneer Courthouse Square

Get in the holiday spirit and leave the driving to us this holiday season as you head to tree lighting events. There are seven tree lighting events in the greater Portland area that are accessible by bus or MAX.

Friday, November 23

Are you headed to the Portland tree lighting ceremony? Please note that the following three MAX stations will be closed 4-7 p.m. due to the large crowd expected at the square: Pioneer Courthouse Square North MAX Station, Pioneer Courthouse Square South MAX Station, and Pioneer Courthouse/SW 6th Ave Station. Get off the MAX a stop before or after these platforms to reach the square. And please remember: the Free Rail Zone in Downtown Portland was eliminated in September, so you’ll need to have a valid fare to ride MAX.

Friday, November 30

  • Tigard’s Liberty Park (corner of SW Main Street and SW Pacific Highway), 7 p.m. Plan your trip

Saturday, December 1

Friday, December 7

Avoid the hassle of traffic and parking by hopping on the MAX or a bus to get to the festivities.

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Take TriMet to summer events

Festival at nightWhat are you planning to do this summer? Need ideas? Grab a 1-Day Pass (only $5 each) and let us take you to your next outing.

Add some of these exciting events to your summer to-do list:

Rose Festival events
Beginning May 25 and lasting through June 10, there’s a bunch of fun Rose Festival events to go to. Here are a few: CityFair (May 25-June 10), Rose Festival Starlight (June 2), Junior (June 6) and Grand Floral (June 9) parades, and the Dragon Boat Races (June 9-10).

Pioneer Courthouse Square events
Pioneer Courthouse Square hosts tons of events all summer long. A few of our favorites are: the Festival of Flowers (June 1-12), Noon Tunes (every Tuesday and Thursday, July 10-August 16), Yoshida’s Sand in the City (July 20-22), and Flicks on the Bricks (every Friday July 27-August 17).

Open markets
Fresh foods and meats aplenty can be found at the Portland Farmers Market (through December 15). And, did you know that the Portland Saturday Market (through December 24) is the largest outdoor arts and crafts market in operation? Cool, huh?

Game time
Our own Major League soccer team, the Portland Timbers, plays at JELD-WEN Field (through October 27).

See a full list of summer events
Check out the many other summer events you can go to this summer and make TriMet part of your summer adventure. Plan a trip today!

Vacationing?
If you are heading out of town, let us take you to Portland International Airport or Union Station.

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Spring Break Staycation Guide

Waterfront Park

Northwesterner1/Wikimedia

Are you planning on a “staycation” this year? Not sure what that means? It’s a vacation where you relax at home or take day trips to area destinations. Save on major travel expenses like airline tickets, lodging, gas and meals. The best part? Staycations can be planned to fit any budget. Let us take you to your next staycation destination. Pick up a 1-Day Pass (only $5 each) and head out to explore.

Here are some spring break staycation ideas that are fun and ideal for keeping change in your pocketbook.

Go old-school and become a tourist
Many tourists come to Portland as a vacation destination. Do what they do. Visit the Portland Art Museum, OMSI, the Portland Japanese Garden or the Zoo. Maybe it’s trying Dim Sum in Chinatown or roller skating at Oaks Park. Always sure to please is the Portland Saturday Market, with arts and crafts in its open-air marketplace.

Spend a day at a park
There are no shortages of parks in Portland. Pack a picnic, blanket and chairs. Spread out and let the kids run around while you sit back and relax. Take TriMet to one of many trails and parks in the area.

Swim day
Sure, spring break in Portland often means dodging rain, but it doesn’t mean you can’t pretend you’re in Maui and enjoy a day at the pool. Find an indoor community pool and dive in.

Buy fresh at a farmers market
Head to your local farmers market for some fresh and colorful fruits and veggies. Get the kids in on the fun and have them choose what to buy for dinner!

Get lost
In places such as Powell’s Books or Forest Park, it’s easy to wander and get lost. Bring the kids, dog, friends or family for an outing you’re sure to enjoy.

Plan your trip
If you’re keen on exploring Portland on TriMet over spring break, check out the many other destinations you can discover on buses, MAX Light Rail, WES Commuter Rail and Portland Streetcar. Plan a trip today!

Paradise-bound
If you are heading out of town for spring break, let us take you to PDX or Union Station.

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