Did you know that Oregon’s Washington County is the most culturally diverse county in the state? What does that mean for you, the visitor? It means you can experience a range of diverse cultural experiences and festivals, without having to renew your passport or leave the country.
Each August, SakéOne (820 Elm St., Forest Grove), an American owned-and-operated saké brewery, hosts a Pacific Rim Festival (August 25; admission $5), celebrating the music, food, art (and saké) of Japan, Hawaii and the Pacific Northwest.
This year marks the second annual International Celebration (July 28, 2012 at the Howard M. Terpenning Recreation Complex, located at the intersection of 158th and Walker Rd.) which celebrates cultures from around the world through song, dance, arts and crafts and more.
Celebrate the luck o’ the Irish year round at the Winona Grange (8340 SW Seneca St.; Tualatin) with the “First Friday Live Irish Music and Dance” (the first Friday of each month; $10 for adults/$5 for students and 65+). These monthly events are produced by S and A Irish Entertainment, which also hosts Celtic concerts each month.
The Glenn and Viola Walters Cultural Arts Center, located in downtown Hillsboro, is home to a host of cultural music events. From spoken word events to dance and live music, the center features entertainment from around the world. Coming up is “Sampradaya: Traditions from Temple to Theater,” classical Bharatanatyam dance incorporating chants from ancient scriptures and the music and rhythm of ancient India (7:30 p.m., March 9; $20 in advance/$25 the day of show).
In April, the center will host the Oregon Mandolin Orchestra, which will be performing the music of Italy, including works from venerable composer Raffaele Calace as well as Italian classics, such as Feniculi-Fenicula (7:30 p.m., April 6; $15 in advance/$17 day of show). For a complete list of upcoming events at the Walters Cultural Arts Center, visit their website.
Film buffs may want to check out Joy Theater (11959 SW Pacific Hwy., Tigard), which shows Hindi and South Indian hit films. To learn more about this unique theater, read this blog post from November 2010.
Finally, visitors can dine on some of the most authentic and exotic food from around the world, without having to leave the country. Beaverton has been praised for its variety of Korean restaurants, boasting some of the most acclaimed spots in the Greater Portland region! If curry, masala and tandoori are your favorite flavors, try one of the area’s hottest Indian restaurants, also known as some of the best eateries in the area. Oregon’s Washington County also has a German, Mediterranean and Vietnamese restaurants, just to name a few of the many types of cuisine served here.
This is a sampling of the many experiences you can have here in Oregon’s Washington County. Visit our website or our event calendar, updated weekly, for ideas of places to see, play and eat while visiting.