What’s the Word?In Washington County, Oregon

Posts Tagged ‘Forest Grove’

Quiz: What Oregon Winery Should You Visit?

Posted on: June 29th, 2015 by Jackie Luskey No Comments

Montinore Estate
It’s time to discover Oregon’s wine country. If it’s your first time visiting the northern Willamette Valley, then it can be daunting to choose which of the 30+ wineries to visit first. While we think every wine tasting trip should include multiple vineyard destinations, here’s a quiz to help you choose which winery to stop at  first.  

What type of wine do you gravitate toward?
A. Pinot Gris
B. Riesling
C. You trust a winemaker’s blend
D. Pinot Noir

Though, please note that each winery excels at multiple varietals!

What’s your favorite home décor style?
A. Sleek modernism
B. Traditional with lots of classic wood pieces
C. Open-concept with free flow between indoor and outdoor
D. Italian villa

What activity do you like to do—with a glass of wine in hand—most?
A. Bocce Ball
B. Nerding out about organic farming
C. Getting cozy by the fire
D. Discovering new herbs for creative recipes

What kind of view do you like?
A. Panoramic views of the Chehalem Mountains
B. Coastal mountain range
C. Mt. Hood
D. Colorful gardens

Who are your wine tasting companions?
A. A mellow bachelorette party
B. Someone who has only wine tasted in California before
C. Your valentine
D. Your extended family

Key:

Mostly A’s: Ponzi Vineyards
Ponzi Vineyards in Sherwood is an Oregon old-school winemaker with lots of new-school charm. The multi-generation winery serves its wines, like the 2014 Pinot Gris that was picked as an “Editor’s Choice” by Wine Enthusiast Magazine, in its incredibly classy gray-hued tasting room.

 

Ponzi Vineyards

Ponzi Vineyards

Mostly B’s: Montinore Estate
Montinore Estate in Forest Grove has a tasting room as regal as many esteemed Napa wineries. The Oregon twist? The stately décor remains unfussy, encouraging tasters to relax, ask questions and learn about the biodynamic winemaking process.

 

Montinore Estate

Montinore Estate (photo: David Brunkow)

Mostly C’s: Árdíri
Árdíri Winery and Vineyards in Cornelius was voted one of the best vineyard views in Oregon, which it celebrates with lots of patio seating tucked around multiple fire pits. Try the 2011 Pinot Noir Due Stati, which blends the best of Willamette Valley and Napa Valley reds into one tantalizing sip.

 

Árdíri Winery

Árdíri Winery

Mostly D’s: Alloro Vineyard
Alloro Vineyard in Sherwood transports wine lovers into an Italian daydream. In addition to the winery’s standout Pinot Noir offerings, be sure to peruse the herb garden for heavenly scents and serene views.

 

Alloro Vineyard

Alloro Vineyard

 

Which winery did your quiz results reveal? Be sure to explore all of the area’s wineries, vineyards and wine shops!

 

4th of July Events in the Greater Portland Region

Posted on: June 17th, 2015 by Jackie Luskey No Comments

What do you love most about the 4th of July? For some it’s the crackle-pop of fireworks lighting up the sky. For others, it’s a chance to get out and be active. Additionally, it’s hard to resist a kitschy Independence Day festival. No matter how you choose celebrate freedom this coming 4th of July, we’ve got the events and attractions to match it. Just a few minutes’ drive from Portland, the Tualatin Valley is a perfectly patriotic escape for the holiday weekend. See our ideas below!

Find patriotic colors at Smith Berry Barn's Annual Berry Festival this Independence Day.

Find patriotic colors at Smith Berry Barn’s Annual Berry Festival this Independence Day.

4th of July Weekend Fireworks, Festivals and Parades

4th of July Fireworks and Family Picnic
Tom McCall Upper Elementary School| July 4 | free

Hillsboro Rotary 4th of July Parade
Downtown Hillsboro| July 4 | free

Old Fashioned 4th of July Celebration
Tigard High School| July 4 | free

Wild West Celebration
Main Street, North Plains| July 4 | free

Annual Berry Festival
Smith Berry Barn| July 4 | free

4th of July Weekend Live Entertainment

Summer Concert – Ants in the Kitchen
Arnold Park| July 2| free

Thoroughly Modern Millie
Deb Fennell Auditorium| July 2-5 | $20-$44

Hillsboro Hops Game & Fireworks
Ron Tonkin Field| July 3 | $7-$16

4th of July Weekend Sport Events

Cook Park Marathon, Half-Marathon and 5k
Cook Park| July 3 | $30-$50

Stars & Stripes Marathon & Half Marathon

Fanno Farmhouse| July 5 | $15-50

4th of July Weekend Markets, Wine and Food Events

Beaverton First Friday
SW Broadway Street| July 3| free

Neighbors Night
Cooper Mountain Vineyards| July 3| $8

Beaverton Farmers Market
SW Hall Boulevard between 3rd & 5th| July 4| free

Wine & Watermelon
Plum Hill Vineyards| July 4-6| No cover charge

Hillsboro’s Sunday Farmers Market
Orenco Station| July 5| free

Tigard’s Sunday Farmers Market
Public Works parking lot| July 5| free

So, what’s it going to be? Parades, live music, an epic run or some good food—or why not do it up and experience it all in the Tualatin Valley? Have a happy and safe 4th of July Weekend!

Find places to stay. | Create a personalized itinerary. | Find places to eat. | View the digital visitor guide.

Winners of the Oregon State Championships of Cornhole

Posted on: June 3rd, 2015 by Jackie Luskey No Comments

Arms swung. Bags flew. Winners conquered. The Oregon State Championships of Cornhole was a sight to be seen with cornhole players from Portland to Bend coming together for a weekend of good competition, good games and even some good beer.

The weekend kicked off with pre-tournament festivities at the McMenamins Grand Lodge. Many of the cornhole players stayed at this Forest Grove location not only for easy access to Saturday’s event at Pacific University, but also to take advantage of the property’s soaking pool, movie theater and the alcohol-infused snow cones! Lucky for you, these perks can still be found during your summer stay at the McMenamins Grand Lodge.

At Saturday’s championship event, top players from last year spared with new talent, bringing about fierce-yet-friendly matches for all of the five divisions. Of the new divisions, the juniors category showed off the fresh energy of the next generation of master cornhole players. It seems that a good arm runs in the family as the junior champion, Selleh Eberly, is the daughter of the singles champion, Scott Eberly. Here’s a full rundown of the Championships’ winners:

Youth: Selleh Eberly
Seniors: Bob Gallup
Womens: Brianna Malcolm
Doubles: Bob Gallup and Ben Fernandez
Singles: Scott Eberly

Get a glimpse of the Oregon State Championships of Cornhole from KATU:

Catch even more cornhole moments with our Facebook Album.

While our whirlwind of cornhole-playing fun is now over, there are still plenty of unique sports to add to your quirky fun in the Tualatin Valley:

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Cornhole How-To and Tips

Posted on: May 27th, 2015 by Jackie Luskey No Comments

The great thing about the upcoming Oregon State Championships of Cornhole is that you actually don’t need to be near champ status to participate. Total newbies and bonafide superstars are all welcome. If you’re looking for an official way to usher in the summer, then this day of lawn games in charming Forest Grove should do the trick. It’s not too late! Book a room with one of our hotel deals. Online registration is now closed, but there will be onsite registration at both the Friday and Saturday events.

How to Play Cornhole

As a single or doubles team, contestants take turns pitching corn bags at a cornhole platform until one contestant or team reaches 21 points. A points breakdown:

  • Corn bag in the hole scores = 3 points
  • Corn bag on the platform = 1 point

Sounds easy, right? It is, but expert players know that it takes a certain finesse to be truly great. Players can strategize by shifting the filling of the corn bag in their hands before throwing it. Here are a few throw options:

Basic Fold
Flatten the bag in your throwing hand, then fold the bag in half so that there is equal fill in each half.

Double Fold
Hold the bag by one corner, then fold the corner without any filling in it over the corner holding the fill. After that, fold the bag in half with the other two corners.

Pancake
Flatten the bag completely and throw it underhand in a spinning motion (similar to throwing a Frisbee)

Sling
Hold the bag by one corner with your index finger and thumb so that you can then hurl (or—ahem—sling) the bag at the hole in a backspin motion. 

Cornhole Lingo

Even if you don’t nail the rules, you can still talk like a pro. Just use our cornhole lingo cheat sheet:

  • Ace-A bag that makes it onto the board, earning one point
  • Dirty Bag-A bag that touches the ground before it touches the board
  • Lipper-A bag that is dangling near the cornhole board’s hole, ready to drop and gain three points
  • Sally-Though we don’t love the gendered connotations of this one, a Sally is a bag that falls short of the board
  • Skunk-A game with an 11-0 score

Now that you have our expert tips, it’s time to register! Online registration is now closed, but there will be onsite registration at both the Friday and Saturday events.

More Cornhole:
Five Reasons to Play in the Oregon State Championships of Cornhole
Forest Grove Itinerary for the Cornhole Championships Weekend

What’s New in Our Cities?

Posted on: May 20th, 2015 by Jackie Luskey No Comments
World of Speed Museum

The World of Speed Museum in Wilsonville, Oregon delights car and culture buffs alike.

The Tualatin Valley is blooming with more than just flowers as new attractions make their spring debuts. That’s right, there are fresh new tasting rooms, museums and more popping up all the time. Help us usher in newcomers with a visit—and maybe a drink or two. Below, catch the details on exciting new additions to Cornelius, Forest Grove and Wilsonville.

Cornelius: Dion Vineyards Tasting Room

Dion Vineyards’ Tasting Room is a new attraction for a long-celebrated vineyard. Dion Vineyards has made the northern Willamette Valley and its fertile slopes of Laurelwood soil its home for more than 30 years, spanning three generations. Now, the estate embarks on a new chapter as it sets roots beyond the soil with a new tasting room in the charming town of Cornelius.  
Location: 33155 Reidweg Road, Cornelius
Hours: Open June thru November, Fridays and Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Cost: $15 tasting

Forest Grove: Bull Run Cider Tasting Room

Bull Run Cider’s Tasting Room fits right into the friendly college-town vibe of downtown Forest Grove. Bull Run Cider is rapidly growing in production as more people fall in love with its not-too-sweet ciders; it was only a matter of time until their popularity gave way to a tasting room, as well. Looking for a late night hang out? Bull Run Cider is a safe bet, serving up cider brews until 1 a.m.
Location: 2225 Cedar Street, Forest Grove
Hours: Wednesday to Saturday from 4 p.m. to 1 a.m.
Cost: varied tasting and by-the-glass costs

Wilsonville: World of Speed Museum

World of Speed is a car lover’s paradise that appeals to those less enthused by hot rods, as well. World of Speed doesn’t just tell the story of American automobiles, but the history and culture surrounds it. Mid-century modern décor, rock-and-roll music and racing stimulators in actual race cars delight every taste. The Holiday Inn Portland South is just a skip away, making this fun stop even speedier!
Location: 27490 SW 95th Avenue, Wilsonville
Hours: Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Tuesday to Friday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (closed Mondays)
Cost: $5 to $10; Simulator tickets $10

Taste what’s new in the Tualatin Valley—and then tell us about it with the #tualatinvalley hashtag!

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Ten Reasons to Love Oregon Wine

Posted on: May 13th, 2015 by Jackie Luskey No Comments

Celebrate Oregon Wine Month in the northern Willamette Valley!

It’s Oregon Wine Month and we’re taking full advantage of all the grapes, barrels and new releases that entails. In case you need any convincing, we’ll give you 10 reasons to visit the wineries of Oregon’s Washington County, proudly part of the northern Willamette Valley!

1. Gateway to Oregon’s Wine Country

So, you’re in Portland, drinking lots of fabulous local wine. Meet the makers of your new favorite blends! The northern Willamette Valley is your closest option with nearly 30 wineries just a short drive away.

2. Oregon Pinot

The Willamette Valley is known for its Pinot—and for good reason! The temperate weather and south facing slopes of our vineyards create Pinot that is earthy and nuanced.

3. More than Pinot

…But the northern Willamette Valley is so much more than Pinot. Try delicious Barbera, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Sangiovese, Syrah, Riesling and Müller-Thurgau varietals (just to name a few!).

4. Biodynamic Wine

Organic wine-making is an enormous feat, which makes biodynamic wine truly incredible. Try wine that is created extra-sustainably at Cooper Mountain Vineyards and Montinore Estate.

5. It’s a Family Affair

Luisa Ponzi carries on the tradition of her parents, who established Ponzi Vineyards in 1970. Similarly, Elk Cove Vineyards was founded in 1974 and remains family-run today.

6. Creative Architecture        

Ponzi Vineyards modern tasting room is a treat for architecture buffs. The Beckham Estate Vineyard is handbuilt and double-duties as a gallery for the winemaker’s pottery art.

7. Live Music

Oak Knoll Winery’s bi-monthly summer concert series, Toast to the Tunes, pairs melodic soul with your Sauvignon.

8. Find Romance (and Scope out Wedding Venues)

Oregon’s Washington County is for lovers—and it shows with six vineyards wedding venues offering their views as the perfect backdrop for your “I do.”

9. Joy Ride Wine Tasting

Make wine tasting a full-out adventure by taking a drive on the rural side with the Vineyard and Valley Scenic Tour Route.

10. Check Oregon Wine for Free on Alaska Air

It’s true, Oregon Wines Fly Free through the spring of 2017. Check a full case of wine for free on Alaska Air flights leaving from Oregon.

Now, tell us why you love Oregon wine!

Find places to stay. | Create a personalized itinerary. | Find places to eat. | View the digital visitor guide.

Forest Grove Cornhole Weekend Trip

Posted on: May 11th, 2015 by Jackie Luskey No Comments

Some people play cornhole religiously. Others can’t imagine a tailgating outing without it. And some don’t even know what the heck it is (though you might know the game by its other monikers: corn toss, bean toss or simply bags). No matter which of these camps you fall into, use the Oregon State Championships of Cornhole as excuse to extend a Portland trip, make a weekend getaway or entertain out-of-town guests.

Here’s a run-down of the cornhole fun, with a few suggestions mixed in:

Friday, May 29
Drive the Vineyard and Valley Scenic Tour Route for scenic views right from the start. When you come across a charming college town, you’ll know you’ve made it to Forest Grove. A few wheel turns and you’ll be at one of the area hotels. Be sure to use cornhole hotel deals to receive a $20 gift card!

After check-in, get into the athletic spirit with the McMenamins Grand Lodge and its casual disc golf course. Your arm will be primed for the Oregon Cornhole Championships Kick Off at the Grand Lodge, which runs from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. “Luck of the Draw” cornhole tournaments and free play.

Beer connoisseurs should hit up Waltz Brewing, Forest Grove’s first brewery whose taproom works double-time as a vintage record shop.

Saturday, May 30

A full day of cornhole demands a hearty breakfast, which means a Maggie’s Buns cinnamon bun is in order—these buns are larger than the hole in a cornhole board!

Rise and shine—it’s the Oregon State Championships of Cornhole (8:30 a.m. start at Pacific University’s Stoller Center; $30 entry fee). No experience is necessary to vie for the cash prizes! The beer garden will provide the perfect spot for relaxing between games.

Win or lose, celebrate a day of good competition with Bull Run Cider. You’re in luck as the new tasting room, open 4 p.m. to 1 a.m., includes music and food carts on Saturdays.

Beyond this itinerary in the ever-cute Forest Grove, we’ll give you five more reasons to play in the Oregon State Championships of Cornhole.

Online registration is now closed, but there will be onsite registration at both the Friday and Saturday events.

Five Ways to Celebrate Memorial Weekend in the Greater Portland Region

Posted on: May 8th, 2015 by Jackie Luskey No Comments

 

Memorial Day weekend is a great time to explore the Tualatin Valley's agricultural scene!

Memorial Day weekend is a great time to explore the Tualatin Valley’s agricultural scene!

Summer solstice may be well over a month away, but Memorial Day weekend is always a sort of soft-opening for summer. Ease into summer with a lackadaisical weekend of wine tasting, farms just opening for their summer season, all-American baseball and patriotically minded museum exhibits.

Memorial Day Weekend Wine Tasting

Oregon Wine Month ends on a sweet note as as the wineries of the northern Willamette Valley joyously open their doors for the weekend. Whether you’re staying in Portland, Beaverton, Hillsboro, Forest Grove or somewhere in between, you’ll be a quick drive from wine tasting in Oregon. Don’t miss Dion Vineyard’s Tasting Room Grand Opening!

Visit an Alpaca Farm

Make new friends—and not necessarily human ones at the Open Alpaca Barn (May 23-24, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., free). Alpaca mothers and babies will be outside to welcome visitors, as will artists working on handspun yarn.

First of Summer Berry Picking and Farmers Markets

Blueberry season doesn’t fully burst onto the scene until July, but the first of summer produce will be sprinkled among our fresh farmers markets. Choose from the Beaverton Saturday Market, Cedar Mill Farmers Market or the Hillsboro Saturday Farmers Market.

Patriotic and All-American Memorial Day Events

In honor of Memorial Day, take a visit to the Washington County Museum (Wednesday-Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; $4-$6 admission). In addition to the “Washington County Goes to War” exhibit, take a few minutes to peruse the adjacent exhibit, “Americans All: The Bracero Program in Washington County.” View artifacts that help tell the story of how Washington County came to have the largest Latino population north of Sacramento during World War II and Mexico joining the Allies in 1942 to help fight the Axis.

What’s Memorial Day without a little baseball? Sit in the stands of the Hillsboro Hops Memorial Day Challenge (May 23-24 at Hillsboro Stadium) and cheer on talented youth baseball teams.

Have a happy, safe and wonderful Memorial Weekend with us!

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Best Earth-Friendly Shopping and Souvenirs in the Tualatin Valley

Posted on: April 22nd, 2015 by Jackie Luskey No Comments

Happy Earth Day! When it comes to treating our planet nicely, small changes can make big differences—even when traveling. In addition to our eco-chic itinerary, we wanted to share a few sustainably-minded souvenirs from Oregon’s Washington County: the Tualatin Valley.

Used Books

Powell’s Books at Cedar Hills Crossing is the home hundreds of thousands of used—and often rare!—books. If you’re looking for a special, early-edition print of your favorite novel, then these are the shelves to scour. What’s more, this Powell’s Books location boasts an impressive collection of gardening and homesteading books so that you can work on your green thumb. For extra sustainability points, take the nearby MAX station at Beaverton Central instead of a car.

 

Literary greats often walk through the doors of the iconic Powell's Books at Cedar Hills Crossing.

Find rare and special used books at Powell’s Books at Cedar Hills Crossing.

 

Biodynamic Wines

Alaska Airlines has extended its Oregon Wines Fly Free promotion, meaning Mileage Plan members may check one case of wine (6 or 12 bottles) for free on their Alaska Airlines flights out of Oregon airports. You might as well make that case of wine full or biodynamic ones that you picked up while wine tasting along our Sustainable Wine Trail. Both Cooper Mountain Vineyards and Montinore Estate produce their wines with farming practices that respect and uphold the beautiful balance of vineyard soils and environments.

 

Rudy Marchese of Montinore Estate is passionate about sharing the beauty, wine, and food along the Sip 47 Route.

Rudy Marchese of Montinore Estate is passionate about sharing his biodynamic wine-making process.

 

Antiques

Shopping antique is a win-win as you score a one-of-a-kind piece without adding the same carbon footprint as buying new goods. What’s your favorite decade? Whether it’s Victorian or totally ’80s, you can shop by the decade at one of our many antique, vintage and carefully-curated second-hand shops. Downtown Hillsboro is freckled with sweet antique shops ready for the most die-hard and leisurely of shoppers.

 

Can you spot any Depression Glass from the Railroad Street Antique Mall's window?

Can you spot any Depression Glass from the Railroad Street Antique Mall’s window?

Want even more ways to travel with Mother Earth in mind? Find more eco-travel tips—you’ll find ways to support and enjoy nature just minutes away from downtown Portland!

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Tualatin Valley Scenic Bikeway as Inspiration for National Poetry Month

Posted on: April 8th, 2015 by Jackie Luskey No Comments

There’s poetry in motion and then there’s poetry about motion. National Poetry Month has us inspired to write about one of the activities we love most in the Tualatin Valley: the Tualatin Valley Scenic Bikeway. The bikeway has become a standout star for cyclists looking for a idyllic ride that’s close to Portland. Running through the towns and cities of Hillsboro, Cornelius, Forest Grove and Banks, the bikeway provides long sweeping views that allow cyclists to become engulfed in the air, water, roads, and spirit of the Tualatin Valley. All in all, it’s quite poetic!

 

Tualatin Valley Scenic Bikeway

By Allison George

Tualatin Valley, Twality Plains, hunting-gathering grounds of the Atfalati
Rusted gates and barbed wire, century farms with crumbling barns
Peachy pigs and clucking hens
A triceratops, her name is Breezy
Crimson clover
Honey, apples, blackberries, corn
Railroad trestles, lonesome train cars
Tractors, horses, wheat and hay
Quiet
Cow poop
Grinding coffee beans
Whispering Pioneer bones
Deep wing beats of the Great Blue Heron
Golden yellow double lines
Meandering Tualatin River
Ancient, roaring Ice Age floods
Cool Coast Range air
50.5
Wheels set us free

We’re not the only ones utterly enchanted by the lyrical rhythm of the Tualatin Scenic Bikeway. 1859 Oregon Magazine touted the bikeway and the Path Less Pedaled had a great tour, as well. the Northwest Bicycle Safety Council has chosen stretches of it for the Beaverton Banks & Beyond Bicycle Tour. How’s the bikeway looking right now? Take a peek at this recent Instagram photo from Ryan P. Garcia (handle @rypgarcia):

Ryan P. Garcia took this photo along the Tualatin Valley Scenic Bikeway, near Fernhill Wetlands.

Ryan P. Garcia took this photo along the Tualatin Valley Scenic Bikeway, near Fernhill Wetlands.

 

Find even more R&R, pedal by pedal.
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