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Portland Oregon
Old 12-28-2005, 07:43 AM   #1
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Portland Oregon

I am going to be in downtown Portland with no car for a day. Any ideas as to what to do? Sounds like it is usually rainy and about 45 degrees this time of year. A little warm rain doesn't bother me.
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Re: Portland Oregon
Old 12-28-2005, 08:05 AM   #2
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Re: Portland Oregon

It's been a long time since I was in Portland, but I remember a very nice farmer's market area - might only be open weekends.

The Lewis and Clark bicentennial is the big event lately -

http://www.travelportland.com/discover/* *This exhibit sounds interesting.
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Re: Portland Oregon
Old 12-28-2005, 08:31 AM   #3
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Re: Portland Oregon

I spent a lot of time in portland when I was working. Unfortunately I cant help you much as I had a girlfriend there and just spent all my time at her place watching it rain outside.

I dont think it'll help, but I can give you her number...
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Re: Portland Oregon
Old 12-28-2005, 09:32 AM   #4
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Re: Portland Oregon

Hi Martha !

I live outside of Portland (I'm currently in Michigan visiting my Mother). Too bad you don't have a car, there is a beautiful stretch of waterfalls not far from there. Mount Hood and the beautiful Oregon coast are also considered a day trip.

The farmer's market is only open on weekends. I think your best bet is to wander around the downtown area and shop and eat. Downtown Portland is actually quite nice. You can ride the train for free within the downtown area.

Let me know what you do today.

-helen

PS - I wish I was there and had the day off, I'd give you a tour of the greater Portland area.
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Re: Portland Oregon
Old 12-28-2005, 09:51 AM   #5
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Re: Portland Oregon

Quote:
Originally Posted by Helen
I think your best bet is to wander around the downtown area and shop and eat. Downtown Portland is actually quite nice. You can ride the train for free within the downtown area.

Sounds like a good plan. Any place for interesting food ?
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Re: Portland Oregon
Old 12-28-2005, 10:04 AM   #6
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Re: Portland Oregon

You could easily kill several days in Powells Books,
the largest independent new and used bookstore in
the nation.
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Re: Portland Oregon
Old 12-28-2005, 10:29 AM   #7
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Re: Portland Oregon

Martha,

I grew up in Portland, long ago. It has changed much. Have not been back for a couple of years, so some of this may be out of date.

I second the recommendation for Powell's Books. They have at least two locations.

Downtown Portland has several outdoor public areas with fountains.

Downtown Portland also has several indoor merry-go-rounds that have been restored by enthusiasts.

We used to go to Louis' Oyster Bar, origin of the salad Crab Louis, now in a seedy part of downtown. They used to grow their own crawfish in a lake in the Cascades. Have not been back for years. Worth asking about.

A couple of years ago, there was a private trolley car that ran from the industrial district just south of downtown to Lake Oswego and back on the hillside above the Willamette [pronounced will-AAH-met, NOT will-a-MET-ee] River. The snobs in Lake Oswego didn't like it very much because it ran through their back yards on an old interurban line, but the easement was still there although disused for a long time. A fun little trip, if it is still active. Call the tourist people before you leave for your trip as reservations may be required. It was very popular when we went on it.

Suggest you get a map at your hotel and ask the front desk about these things. Then call the tourist bureau for more info if you need it.

Portland is a pretty city at night. Consider having dinner or drinks at one of the restaurants on the top floors of buildings downtown. Ask at the hotel. Get a seat by the window and watch the river at night.

Oh, yeah. Portland does not have warm rain. Bring a sweater and a raincoat. Buy an umbrella when you get there if you need it. Natives are issued one at birth.

The Portland Art Museum is a little south of downtown in the Park Blocks and may be worth your visit. They had a big collection of Northwest indian art plus the usual touring shows.

Enjoy!

Ed
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Re: Portland Oregon
Old 12-28-2005, 11:01 AM   #8
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Re: Portland Oregon

Oh, yes, I forgot about Powells - I "third" that recommendation!
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Re: Portland Oregon
Old 12-28-2005, 11:41 AM   #9
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Re: Portland Oregon

Portland is a 'dine out' town.* Just ask your hotel for the favorite of the moment.* There are nice 'happy hour' offerings at restraunts in the Pearl District, a close-in NW neighborhood.

My husband was chair of a convention in Portland a few years ago.* They offered a tour of Powells and had busloads sign up.* Teenagers go on Powells dates!* The main store is at 10th and west Burnside.* Walking distance from down-town hotels.* [For those who don't know, China had Powells restock their English language books after the Cultural Rev.]

FYI, Portland uses SW, NW, SE, NE in street names.* N & S referr to Burnside Street, E & W to sides of the Wmt. River.

I don't know how you are getting to/from your hotel but the light rail runs to the airport, find it to the left as you leave the baggage area.* I recommend it.
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Re: Portland Oregon
Old 12-28-2005, 11:57 AM   #10
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Re: Portland Oregon

In and out via Amtrak, which is in the NW part of town. From the maps, looks like walking distance to the big book store. And given my book addiction (by far my largest discretionary expense). . . I assume they ship?
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Re: Portland Oregon
Old 12-28-2005, 12:19 PM   #11
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Re: Portland Oregon

Martha,

I am sure that Powells ships. They even have a web site. You can peruse what must be an incomplete database of their inventory.

There were also other used book stores downtown that I used to haunt on Saturday morning, but my info is way out of date.

BTW, since you mentioned books, I grew up in the Multnomah County Library which is also in the Park Blocks, a little south of downtown. It probably isn't a stand-out library by world standards, but it was my window on the universe.

Cheers,

Ed
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Re: Portland Oregon
Old 12-28-2005, 01:04 PM   #12
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Re: Portland Oregon

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed_The_Gypsy
BTW, since you mentioned books, I grew up in the Multnomah County Library
That must have been rough without a bathtub or a shower in the bathrooms... and what would you use for a pillow at night-- Forbes' "What it Costs to Live Well" back issues?
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Re: Portland Oregon
Old 12-28-2005, 01:04 PM   #13
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Re: Portland Oregon

I wanted to second and then third Powells but I got in too late. Great place. Also Portland is full of nice brew pubs. You can get around on public transportation and a week will not cover all ths shops. There are some interesting things out of town (great kayaking!) but save that for another trip.
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Re: Portland Oregon
Old 12-28-2005, 01:53 PM   #14
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Re: Portland Oregon

Nords,

Whazzamattayu? Teenage boys do not shower. (You have a girl--you will find out one day!)

Gypsy
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Re: Portland Oregon
Old 12-28-2005, 01:56 PM   #15
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Re: Portland Oregon

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed_The_Gypsy
Nords,

Whazzamattayu? Teenage boys do not shower. (You have a girl--you will find out one day!)

Gypsy
Don't I know it. Last time I took the train from St. Paul to Portland, you had to plug your nose walking through coach. All the teenage boys going off to ski in Montana--showers optional. Pew.
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Re: Portland Oregon
Old 12-28-2005, 04:42 PM   #16
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Re: Portland Oregon

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed_The_Gypsy
Whazzamattayu? Teenage boys do not shower. (You have a girl--you will find out one day!)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Martha
Don't I know it.* Last time I took the train from St. Paul to Portland, you had to plug your nose walking through coach.* All the teenage boys going off to ski in Montana--showers optional.* Pew.*
Never occurred to me! Another benefit of living in the islands & raising a grrrl...
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Re: Portland Oregon
Old 12-28-2005, 06:38 PM   #17
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Re: Portland Oregon

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Originally Posted by Nords
Never occurred to me!* Another benefit of living in the islands & raising a grrrl...
I'm sure. I'll bet gender isn't an issue if you're living in the islands. It would be easy to take a quick dip in the ocean. And, B.O. is probably a good shark repellent.

-helen
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Re: Portland Oregon
Old 12-29-2005, 11:46 AM   #18
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Re: Portland Oregon

Quote:
Originally Posted by Helen
It would be easy to take a quick dip in the ocean.
Some weeks, especially when the surfs' good, I take more showers at the beach than at home!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Helen
And, B.O. is probably a good shark repellent.
Actually I think it's more of an attractant... but I don't have any experience or research to validate that. Nor do I think I want to find out.
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Re: Portland Oregon
Old 12-29-2005, 07:51 PM   #19
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Re: Portland Oregon

Martha, you may already know this, but long-haul trains are rarely on time, particularly in the winter.* Your scheduled arrival ia 10:10 am.

If you will be catching the Coast Starlight south it departs at 2:05 pm and will we close to on time.* You may not have as much time in Portland they promise.

That being the case take a taxi to Powells, while not far the walk could take 30 minutes.* Take a taxi, or if you arrive on a day I am in Portland I be happy to pick you up.

Try to get a window seat on the left side of the train for the leg down the Gorge.* If they have dome car that is the place to be from 7 am on.* If the weather is clear it will be a stunning ride.
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