Major Milestones Coming up in 2020
We LOVE that Oregon’s birthday is February 14! The 33rd and ninth-largest state was founded in 1959, making it 161 years old this year. Long before the Louisiana Purchase and Lewis and Clark’s expedition, Native Americans lived here. Native names are everywhere, including “Tualatin,” named after the tribe of the Kalapuya peoples.
Fun facts about Oregon:
- We have 14 National Historic Districts and four National Historic Trails. You may have heard of a little thing called the Oregon Trail.
- We grow more than 72 varietals of wine grapes at more than 700 vineyards.
- We have 17 scenic bikeways, including the Tualatin Valley Scenic Bikeway.
- We have hundreds of campsites, 230 state parks, including L.L. Stub Stewart State Park, and 13 national forests.
- We don’t have sales tax!
Wineries Celebrating 50 years
Two of Oregon’s pioneering wineries are celebrating five decades in 2020. Oregonians have been making wine since before statehood, but the past 50 years have been pivotal in developing that reputation.
Dick and Nancy Ponzi started their winery with 20-acres of land before the Willamette Valley was known for Pinot noir. In 1979, Ponzi became the first Oregon wine featured in the New York Times. Ponzi Vineyards has grown and its tradition is carried on by the second generation of the family. The vineyard is now 130-acres and produces pinot gris, chardonnay, pinot blanc, Riesling and more.
The trailblazing family also founded Bridgeport Brewing Company, which was the first craft brewery and brewpub in Oregon.
Ponzi’s tasting room is in a beautiful spot with endless views of Tualatin Valley, fireside seating, bocce ball courts and more to enjoy while you taste their acclaimed wines.
Washington County’s first winery, Oak Knoll, was founded by Ronald and Marjorie Vuylsteke in 1970. They produced about 4,000 gallons of wine from locally grown fruit that fall and have continued making berry and grape wines ever since. Oak Knoll made its first vintage of Pinor Noir in 1973.
The Vuylstekes and their children ran the winery from the start. A cousin then took the reins after working there for 17 years.
Oak Knoll hosts events like bingo, paint and sip parties and wine glass painting nights.
Patton Valley Vineyards is also celebrating a big anniversary this year. The Gaston winery is celebrating its 25th harvest with a carnival in May and harvest celebration in August. Patton Valley started with an abandoned hillside in 1995 and is now 30 acres of sustainably grown grapes for Pinot noir, Gamay and Chenin blanc.
100 Years of Banks
The City of Banks is turning 100 years old! The centennial kicks off January 16, and will hold events throughout the year. The small city is the gateway to the Oregon Coast, right on the edge of the Coast Range. It sits on Highway 26 in the middle of wine country, farmland and forests. Outdoor recreation is big in Banks and it’s home to Oregon’s first rail-to-trail project — the Banks-Vernonia State Trail. The 21-mile multi-use path is perfect for cyclists, hikers and horseback riders.
98 Years of McMenamins Grand Lodge
The McMenamins Grand Lodge was build in 1922 as a Masonic lodge. The unique and whimsical hotel has 90 guestrooms, several bars and even a spa. To celebrate its 98th birthday, the Grand Lodge is throwing a birthday party on March 7. The party will include live music, a McMenamins Passport Discovery Hunt and handcrafted birthday beer.
Connect with nature and explore wildlife while walking through a protected nature park. Explore the forest, revel in the sights and take in the beauty of the valley.
Just minutes from downtown Portland, Tualatin Valley offers a host of events near Portland throughout the year.
Our hotels are close to Portland and have many urban amenities, but are only a fraction of the cost. Plus, parking is always free, and our hotels do not charge any amenity/resort fees!