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We’ve already experienced record-breaking heatwaves this summer in Oregon, and it’s important to find free, easy ways to beat the heat with littles (and bigs)! Fortunately, Portland Parks have interactive fountains and splash pads throughout the city. No matter what quadrant you’re in, one is nearby! Read on for our favorite Portland splash pads for creative play throughout the city. Note that water is cleaned and chlorinated, but not meant for ingesting.

Northwest:

 

Jamison Square
The cascading waterfalls of the Jamison Square interactive fountain are mesmerizing, and a respite on a hot day. The water pools into a shallow area before receding again and recirculating. Kiddos love climbing the rocks and sitting in the water streams. After cooling off in the fountain, head across the street to Cool Moon Ice Cream for a home-made ice cream cone or sorbet.

Fun fact: the 30-foot-tall sculptures along the park, which cover streetcar poles, are called Tikitotemoniki Totems.

810 NW 11th Avenue
Splash pad hours: 11:00 - 7:00 pm
Online: portland.gov/parks/jamison-square

Essex Park
This cute hidden park near Holgate Library has a splash pad, playground, picnic tables and a basketball court. Stop by the library to browse a large selection of children's books at the Multnomah County Library, then enjoy a picnic at the park while your little adventurers splash away.

SE 79th Ave. & Center St.
Online: portlandoregon.gov

Earl Boyles Park
You’ll find a splash pad at this outer southeast park, as well as a playground with a colorful climbing structure, picnic tables, walking paths and a horseshoe pit. There's even a volley ball court for the more competitive members of your family. 

SE 107th Ave. & Francis St.
Online: portlandoregon.gov

Northeast:

Irving Park
This spacious park has it all, from shady trees and a baseball field to basketball courts and a popular playground. Adjacent to the playground your water lovers can wet their tiny toes in the refreshing sprayground, with a splashing fire hydrant and other fun water structures.

NE 7th Ave. & Fremont St.
Online: portlandoregon.gov

Grant Park
Fans of Beverly Cleary books will love seeing their favorite characters come to life at this Ramona-inspired fountain. While splashing their feet in the water, kids can check out the sculptures of Ramona, Henry Huggins and Ribsy the Dog. The park also has an adjacent playground and tennis courts, so it’s the perfect spot to spend a full afternoon enjoying the summertime sunshine.

NE 33rd Ave & US Grant Pl.
Online: portlandoregon.gov 

Khunamokwst Park
This fun little park in the Cully neighborhood features a nature-based stream, complete with interactive hand pump and river rocks to wade along, leading to a shallow pooled area. This is perfect for a young child who loves to explore. After wading, be sure to check out the pinecone sculpture near the playground, which represents the Native American story of the Douglas Fir and the Mouse. Kʰunamokwst Park is the first Portland Parks and Rec park to have an indigenous name, respecting the history of this land.

5200 NE Alberta Street
Splash pad hours: 11:00 - 7:00 pm
Online: portland.gov/parks/kkunamokwst-park                                               

North:

Peninsula Park
On a hot day, enjoy the respite of the 16-acre shady, tree-lined Peninsula Park. The splash pad is located in the heart of the park, near the two playgrounds (one for younger children, one for older), and adjacent to the public restrooms. The water-spouting “flowers” are a kid-favorite.

Fun fact: Peninsula Park was Portland’s first public rose garden.

700 N Rosa Parks Way
Splash pad hours: 11:00 - 7:00 pm
Online: portland.gov/parks/peninsula-park

Columbia Park
The gigantic flower fountains and movable jet sprays make the sprayground at this beautiful tree-shaded park a Portland favorite. With water play, plenty of picnic tables and a playground that kids love, Columbia Park will quickly become your summer play date meetup spot.

N Lombard St. & Woolsey Ave.
Online: portlandoregon.gov

Farragut Park
Kiddie “car wash” structures, bubbling fountains and water sprays are some of the fun splash pad fixtures at this 14-acre park. You’ll also find basketball courts, walking paths, picnic tables and a play structure that will keep the kids busy until they tire out on those perfect summer days.

N Kerby Ave. & N Farragut St.
Online: portlandoregon.gov

McCoy Park
The interactive fountain at McCoy Park is a family fave! Children of all ages will love chasing the dancing fountains, which shoot upwards of 12-feet high, in spurts of unpredictable aquatic excitement. While drying off, take a stroll toward the playground on a quest to find the squirrel and salmon sculpture benches, and walk the circular pathway showcasing different phases of the moon. Fun fact: McCoy Park is named after Bill and Gladys McCoy, local African-American political leaders. In 1970, Gladys McCoy was the first African-American to serve on the Portland School Board.

N Trenton Street and Newman Avenue
Splash pad hours: 11:00 - 7:00 pm
Online: portland.gov/parks/mccoy-park

Southwest:

Elizabeth Caruthers Park
For tiny tots just getting ready to test the waters, this simple yet delightful round stepping stone splash pad is a treat. For those who are tired of the water, there's a bocce court and unpaved paths to explore.

3508 SW Moody Ave.
Online: portlandoregon.gov

Salmon Street Springs at Waterfront Park
If you want to hear shrieks of summer happiness, head down to the waterfront and let your kids catch the spray at Salmon Street Springs. A computer controls the three changing patterns of water, named “misters,” “bollards,” and “wedding cake.” Kids will have a great time trying to guess which is which. With an impressive 185 jets of water and riverfront views, this is one spot that you’ll want to add to your summer bucket list.

Waterfront Park, Naito Parkway at SW Salmon
Online: portlandoregon.gov

Teachers Fountain at Director Park
Located in the heart of downtown Portland, this cheery plaza offers shady seating, a giant chess board, and a fun interactive fountain area. Kiddos will love chasing the arcing jets that splash into a shallow pool area. Adults will enjoy sitting along the wall to soak tired feet in the refreshing water. If you get hungry or thirsty, Flying Elephants Deli is located across the street, which is open weekdays from 8:00 am - 4:00 pm.

815 SW Park Avenue
Fountain hours: 7:00 am - 10:00 pm
Online: portland.gov/parks/director-park

Spring Garden Park
Located in this picturesque Multnomah Village park, the interactive water feature at Spring Garden Park provides hours of fun. Also onsite are musical instrument installations, a large lookout tower play structure, and the intriguing “nest” sculpture by Hannes Wingate. The playground meets all current ADA requirements.

3332 SW Spring Garden Street
Fountain hours: 7:00 am - 10:00 pm
Online: portland.gov/parks/spring-garden-park

Southeast

Earl Boyles Park
Bring along some horseshoes to work up a sweat in the horseshoe pit before hitting up the splash pad at Earl Boyles Park. Located in the Powellhurst-Gilbert neighborhood, the park also features an accessible spray feature, a volleyball court, and has an accessible Portland Loo onsite for potty breaks. Fun fact: Earl Boyles was a well-loved janitor at the former Powellhurst Elementary School for nearly 20 years in the 1930s and 40s. The park was named after him.

SE 107th Avenue and Francis Street
Splash pad hours: 11:00 - 7:00 pm
Online: portland.gov/parks/earl-boyles-park

Colonel Summers Park
One of the newer splash pad installations in the Portland Parks system is at Colonel Summers Park, which features small climbing rocks and sitting areas. The park also hosts a playground, basketball court and tennis courts, so there’s something for everyone! Grab some picnic fixings at Market of Choice on your way over to make a day of it.

SE 17th Avenue and Taylor Street
Splash pad hours: 11:00 - 7:00 pm
Online: portland.gov/parks/colonel-summers-park

—April Hasson

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Fantastic Portland Food Carts Open Now

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What’s better for wiggly kids than an outdoor dining experience where you can choose your own adventure? Food carts are a perfect bet for families, where movement is encouraged at all of the local pods, diners can hop between choices and never have to sit in a booth waiting for a server to take an order. Portland is known for its large variety of cuisines and food cart pods – some with added features like fire pits, movie screenings and games. And food carts offer COVID-safe dining and options for the vulnerable like, a streamlined ordering experience either online, by phone, or even delivery. Read on to check out our favorite food carts to visit with kids!

Smaaken Waffles

Take a waffle, add practically anything and you've got a winner of a meal for any kid. Smaaken (the Dutch word for "tasty") creates delicious sandwiches out of thin, crispy waffles that can veer either savory or sweet, breakfast or lunch. Try the bacon maple, or grilled cheese, or even the pb&j version!

Hawthorne Asylum
1080 SE Madison St.

The Lot at Scout Beer
5029 SE Division St.
(503) 688-8214

BG’s Food Cartel
4250 SW Rose Biggi Ave.
Beaverton, OR
(971) 235-6578
Online: smaaken.com

Bao Bao

Fluffy steamed buns are a carbo-licious treat any kid will love. The ones at Bao Bao are handmade and stuffed with things like pork, chicken, red bean paste, or mushrooms. Try the lotus paste one for a sweet treat! They also have noodles and even frozen bao so you can take them home.

Bao Bao NE
545 NE Couch St

Bao Bao Downtown
232 Southwest Washington St.

Portland, OR
503-477-8911
Online: baobaopdx.com

Matta

This cart serves up super cozy, homey food from family recipes inspired by Vietnam. The "Vietnamese soul food" includes fried chicken and rice, stir-fried beef, and "mom's omelet" as menu toppers, and any tiny sweet tooth is sure to be pleased by the pandan donut. Matta's been working hard all spring and summer to serve up as many free meals as they can to restaurants workers and kids, and any in need.

1533 NE Alberta St.
Portland, OR
971-258-2849
Online: mattapdx.com

Matt’s BBQ

For the kiddie carnivore in your life, head to the very popular Matt’s BBQ cart at the Prost food carts on Mississippi Ave. Here you’ll find every type of smoked meat one could wish for, plus fun sides like the queso mac and cheese. Order online to help them reduce contact-- you can even order a day ahead so dinner's already taken care of!

4233 N Mississippi Ave
Portland, OR
Online: Mattsbbqpdx.com

Potato Champion

One of the original food carts in Portland (it opened in 2008!) Potato Champion serves up all manner of fry-related goods. Poutine is their specialty, that Canadian dish of French fries and cheese curds covered in gravy. They've expanded to a range of housemade sauces like peanut curry or pesto mayo. Kids will enjoy the buttermilk ranch, or bravely try the pb&j poutine!

1207 SE Hawthorne Blvd
Portland, OR
503-477-7265
Online: https://www.potatochampion.com

photo: Fried Egg I'm In Love

Fried Egg I’m In Love

The catchy names of their menu offerings will make parents smile, and kiddos will love the fresh OJ and sandwiches. Try the Built To Spill, for obvious reasons, which features a fried egg and cheddar on toasted sourdough. Then stroll among the bricks in Pioneer Courthouse Square to see what interesting names you can find.

To cut down on facetime, you can order online before you arrive at your nearest food cart.-- they’ll have it ready to pick up.

Hawthorne
3549 SE Hawthorne Blvd.
503-610-EGGS
971-808-5727

Pioneer Courthouse Square
780 SW Broadway
503-704-FELT

Prost! Marketplace
4237 N Mississippi Ave.
503-869-5915
Online: friedegglove.com

The Whole Bowl

Slung out of a super-cute retro-looking trailer with wood paneling, The Whole Bowl has the beans and rice bowl scene covered. Check out the Bambino Bowl for only $6, which includes brown rice, black and red beans, avocado, cilantro, black olives, Tillamook cheddar, sour cream, salsa and sauce. Delicious, and healthy!

Eight locations in Portland, six are currently open and serving
Online: thewholebowl.com/portland.html

Arlo’s Fish and Chips

Check out the tasty homemade fish and chips from Arlo’s! Each bite is battered and fried to perfection and served with a side of french fries. A kid and crowd-favorite! Grab a scoop of ice cream at the neighboring Beau Berry cart afterwards. They're open until they sell out each day! To make ordering faster, you can call it in ahead of time, or order when you arrive. 

St. John’s Food Cart Pod
7316 North Lombard 
971-813-9711
Online: www.facebook.com/Arlos-Fish-Chips-342577826084713/

 

–Annette Benedetti

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10 Women Who Changed Portland

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For Women’s History Month, teach your kids about the women who helped make Portland the special place it is. You might be surprised by some of the women who changed Portland for the better over the years: from the author who created one of children’s most beloved book characters, to the rainbow of women who made our city the progressive place it is known to be. Read on to find out more about these amazing ladies.

Beverly Cleary

Beverly Cleary is a National Book Award-winning recipient author best known for the Ramona series of books about Ramona Quimby, as well as the Henry Huggins series. These books centered around the fictional children’s lives with their families, friends and Portland-based neighborhoods. Her imaginative stories took place in the Grant Park neighborhood of northeast Portland, with familiar sites such as Klickitat and Tillamook streets. Beverly Cleary won the Laura Ingalls Wilder Award from the American Library Association for "substantial and lasting contributions to children's literature", as well as the National Medal of Arts.

You may visit the statue of Ramona Quimby in Grant Park, or visit the Beverly Cleary School in the Grant Park neighborhood.

Hattie Redmond

Hattie Redmond was a Black American suffragist who lived in Portland. Hattie and her seven siblings attended the Portland Colored School, which was located at SW 4th and Columbia. As a child of emancipated slaves, Hattie was committed to helping women, especially Black women, achieve the right to vote. Hattie hosted suffrage meetings in Portland in the early 1900s. Mrs. Redmond became president of the Colored Women’s Equal Suffrage Association and was instrumental in the Black Civil Rights movement. Through her activism in the State Central Campaign Committee, Hattie Redmond helped advocate for the passage of Oregon Measure 1, the Women's Suffrage Amendment in 1912. Because of Hattie’s civic contributions, women achieved the right to vote in Oregon. You may “visit” Hattie’s grave at Lone Fir Cemetery in SE Portland.

Tawna Sanchez

Tawna Sanchez is a member of the Oregon House of Representatives. She is the second Native American to serve in the Oregon legislature, and the first to represent Portland.

Sanchez is known for her work with the Native American Youth and Family Center (NAYA), where she began working in her youth and currently serves as the Director of Family Services. Ms. Sanchez founded the Healing Circles program, a nationally-recognized program for preventing and disrupting domestic violence. In addition to her civic work, Ms. Sanchez is a leader in child welfare and has raised 18 foster children.

Mercedes Deiz

Mercedes Deiz grew up poor, the eldest of 10 children. While working during the day, she attended law school in the evenings, becoming the first Black woman admitted to the Oregon Bar, as well as the first Black woman to serve as a district court judge, and the first to be elected as a county circuit court judge. Mrs. Deiz served 22 years as a Multnomah County judge and was well known in the Albina Neighborhood for her civic action in the Urban League of Portland and the NAACP Portland.

Leah Hing

Leah Hing was the first Chinese American woman to earn her pilot's license, later becoming an instrument mechanic during World War II at the Portland Air Base.

Ms. Hing was a lifelong resident of the Ladd's Addition neighborhood. Ms. Hing served as president of the Portland Chinese Girls' Club and founded the Portland Chinese Girls' Orchestra, as well as serving as the general manager of the Chung Wah Hoopers, Portland’s female basketball team. She also played the saxophone and performed internationally as part of The Honorable Wu's Vaudeville Troupe.

Ms. Hing is shown in a mural of female Oregon aviators at the Portland International Airport, and her first plane is on display in the Pearson Air Museum.

Gretchen Kafoury

Gretchen Miller Kafoury co-founded the Oregon chapter of the National Organization for Women (NOW) in 1970. Mrs. Kafoury served in the Oregon House of Representatives, the Multnomah County Commission, and the Portland City Council. Mrs. Kafoury was also an instructor at Portland State University, teaching classes related to community development, homelessness, and poverty. In 1972, Mrs. Kafoury was part of a small group of women who protested the City Club of Portland's policy excluding women members, successfully allowing women members to join over 50 years of only male members.

Gretchen Kafoury Commons, a nine-story apartment community, is located downtown near Portland State University. Gretchen Kafoury is also part of the Women Making History mural, located on the exterior of the building at 2335 North Clark Avenue.

Beatrice Morrow Cannady

Beatrice Morrow Cannady was the co-founder and vice president of the Portland chapter of the NAACP. Mrs. Cannady was also editor and owner of The Advocate, a Portland-based newspaper that reported on issues relating to racial minorities in the 1920s and 30s. Mrs. Cannady worked to remove racist, exclusionary language from Oregon's constitution and advocated for the passage of civil rights bills. Mrs. Cannady attended Northwestern College of Law and became the first Black woman to graduate from law school in Oregon and the first Black woman to practice law in Oregon.

The Beatrice Morrow apartment building, named after Beatrice Morrow Cannady can be found on NE Martin Luther King Jr Blvd in the Eliot neighborhood.

Lola Baldwin

Aurora "Lola" Greene Baldwin was one of the first policewomen in the United States. In 1908, she became the Superintendent of the Portland Police Department Women’s Protective Division, where she lobbied for laws to protect women. Ms. Baldwin served as a detective from 1908 to 1922. Ms. Baldwin promoted criminal behavior reform over incarceration. She advocated for laws to protect women, counseled other jurisdictions about women's law-enforcement issues, and championed women being effective police officers.

Lola Baldwin is buried at River View Cemetery in Portland.

Mary Gysin Leonard

Mary Gysin Leonard immigrated alone from Switzerland to Portland in her twenties. She studied law and passed the bar exam, however, the Oregon Supreme Court denied her application to the Oregon Bar because she was a woman. Mrs. Leonard persevered, and, after 10+ years of petitioning and legislative action, was finally admitted to the Oregon Bar in 1886. She was a successful attorney in Portland for decades, offering free legal advice women to help them be successful, too.

Kim Stegeman

Kim "Rocket Mean" Stegeman is the founder and Executive Director of the Rose City Rollers, a women's flat track roller derby league and 501(c)3 non-profit. The Rose City Rollers has trained thousands of skaters from around the world and hosted hundreds of skating competitions. Rose City Rollers has over 400 members participating in recreational programs, and adult and junior skating programs with skaters ranging in age from 7 to 60 years old. Rose City's all-star travel team has won the Women's Flat Track Derby Association Championships four times. Rose City Rollers continues to train athletes, host events, and offer pop-up roller skating activities throughout Portland.

—April Hasson

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Stay Healthy: Gyms With Childcare

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Getting fit in 2020 is easier than ever for local parents. These Portland-area workout options don’t make you choose between tending to the kids or yourself. They offer play and care options for the wee ones so you you can sweat it out for a bit. Getting your workout in isn’t just possible, it’s easy with these gyms that provide childcare. Read on to find out where you can get fit fast.

photo: VillaSport via yelp

barre3
Locally founded barre3 offers hour-long classes designed for a full body workout. Incorporating elements of yoga, ballet and isometric holds, classes are taught in group settings with individualized modifications to fit any fitness level. With five area locations in the Pearl, SE Division, Cedar Mill, Kruse Village and North Williams, there’s likely also a studio near you. The “play lounge” is only $5 per session, where children can read books, play with toys or draw pictures with the onsite nanny service.

Four Portland-area locations, including the Pearl, SE Division, Cedar Mill and North Williams
Online: barre3.com

photo: West Coast Fitness via facebook

West Coast Fitness
Locally owned West Coast Fitness features a 2,500 square foot yoga studio, large weight room and an expansive group fitness class schedule, all included in membership. They also have a well appointed childcare facility stocked full of toys and learning materials. Maybe you just need a respite from the winter grind? Take advantage of the inclusive services of hydro massage, full spectrum light therapy and steam and sauna while your kiddos get some supervised exercise and play. You’ll all leave feeling a little more relaxed and refreshed!

7522 N. Lombard
503-283-5404
Online: pdxgym.com

photo: Aspire Total Fitness via facebook

Aspire Total Fitness
Another locally-owned and operated fitness studio is Aspire Total Fitness, situated in Happy Valley. Aspire Total Fitness offers group classes, nutrition counseling and personal training for a fully customized experience. In addition to their wide range of cardio, resistance band and barbell classes, Aspire also offers childcare during your workout. Drop in rates are $5/child, or families can purchase an unlimited monthly package for $75 (great for those fitness fanatics with 2+ kids).

14210 SW Sunnyside Rd. Ste. 600
Happy Valley
503-855-3588
Online: aspiretotalfitness.com

photo: Boom Fitness via facebook

Boom Fitness
With locations in both Beaverton and Bridgeport, Boom Fitness has CrossFit, yoga, kickboxing and cycling classes (to name a few!), plus personal training options. Their kids club provides supervised childcare to infants through pre-teens for a flat rate package of $35 per month, or a drop off fee of $8. Check each location for childcare hours.

Bridgeport
18039 SW Lower Boones Ferry Rd.
503-684-8151

Tanasbourne
2200 NW Amberbrook Dr.
Beaverton
503-531-8400
Online: boomfitnesspdx.com

Northwest Women’s Fitness
Looking for a women’s only gym? Check out NW Women’s Fitness for group training classes and boot camps, a weight room and cardio machine center, and semi-private Pilates classes (men are welcome to some Pilates and specialty classes). The Kids Club is open Monday-Saturday and is staffed by two moms who have ran the childcare center for over 10 years. They truly care about your little ones. Drop in fees are $10 for one child, $12 for two children or $15. for 3+ children, plus monthly packages are available. Need a break? Take a steam, sit in the relaxing aroma-light therapy, or get an onsite massage.

2714 NE Broadway
503-287-0655
Online: nwwomensfitness.com

photo: Mittleman JCC via facebook

Mittleman Jewish Community Center (MJCC)
The MJCC has been around for over 100 years, offering swimming, physical therapy, personal training and adult exercise classes. All faiths are welcome! Club J’s drop-in childcare center is open for children aged six months to five years old for up to two hours per session. Rates are only $5/month for members or $15/month for non-members. For older children aged 6-12 years old, there are a variety of camps ranging from swimming, soccer, basketball, racquetball, and board games. Check with the Center for more details on what’s currently available.

6651 SW Capitol Highway
Portland,
503-244-0111
Online: oregonjcc.org 

The Nest Playground
Nest Playground is a 5,000 square foot indoor playground and family wellness center, offering an array of activities for the whole family. Some active options including a rock wall, and classes such as martial arts, dance classes for kids. Additionally, they offer barre, cardio kickboxing and self defense and HIIT classes for adults—and a full service café. Parents lacking the time to fit in an exercise class while shuttling their children back and forth between school and extracurricular activities will benefit from adult classes scheduled at the same time as classes for their children.

The Nest’s full service café and lounge area features free wifi, panini sandwiches, small plates, snacks, pastries, Ristretto Roasters coffee drinks, tea, beer, wine, chai lattes and more.

6517 NE Sandy Blvd,
Portland,
971-229-0963
Online: nestplayground.com

photo: VillaSport via yelp

VillaSport
If you’re looking for the most robust children’s gym center, look no further than Beaverton’s VillaSport! The 12,000 square foot VillaKids is a kids’ club within the larger VillaSport facility, especially for children aged six weeks to 12 years. Youth are treated to studios and courts for exercise, art, basketball and educational activities, plus an enclosed outdoor playground and indoor climbing structure. VillaSport also offers monthly “Parent’s Night Out” parties from 5-10 pm, where children can participate in themed activities while parents enjoy an offsite date night.

13900 SW Meridian St.
Beaverton
971-317-2600
Online: villasport.com

photo: Yoga Union via yelp

Yoga Union
The Mt. Tabor neighborhood’s Yoga Union Community Wellness Center offers more than just yoga. In addition to twelve types of yoga classes ranging from beginners to Vinyasa, the Prema Health Wellness Center provides counseling, massage, acupuncture and naturopathic medicine. While parents engage in healthy activities, the onsite Reggio Emilia-based childcare center offers a safe, nurturing environment for children at affordable prices and extensive hours. Pricing starts at $6 for a half hour, but packages reduce pricing and can be shared amongst siblings.

2305 SE 50th Ave #100
Portland
503-235-9642
Online: yogaunion.com

—April Hasson

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You don’t need to travel to Disneyland to hit up a family-friendly amusement park with fun attractions! Portland’s very own Oaks Park has been in operation for over 100 years, bringing rides, mini golf, skating and games, all in a picturesque setting. We’ve put together must-do summer experiences and a guide for all things Oaks Park, so that you can plan your family outing and activities without breaking a sweat (well, unless you’re roller skating!). Read on for our best insider tips.

photo: Rose City Rollers

What Not To Miss This Summer

Roller Derby!
Cross the parking lot to visit the Rose City Rollers’ Hangar to watch Portland’s champion women’s roller derby team in action. There’s a special family-friendly Junior League season opener tournament at 5 pm on September 7. Tickets to this are only $10, or buy a “Family Pack”, which includes four tickets, four sodas and a popcorn for only $40. Visit their website for more details at www.rosecityrollers.com.

Oaks Park Summer Discount Days
There’s no better way to spend your summer days than going on thrill rides, skating and putting in the warm sunshine. And guess what, you can do all of these things without breaking the bank. Oaks Amusement Park has a variety of Summer Discount Days options. Find the one (or two) that are right for you here. You’ll stay busy all summer long!

Chipper’s Preschool Rides
Every Tuesday and Wednesday through Sept. 4 families with little ones ages 6 and younger can enjoy a special morning of pint-sized fun from 9:30 a.m.-12 p.m. Chipper’s Preschool Rides features kiddie rides, selected family rides, cookies and milk, and story time with Chipper the Squirrel and The Oregon Dairy Princess!

Facebook Cheapskate
Save some cash when you mention the weekly password posted to the Oaks Amusement Park Facebook page each Wednesday. If you do you’ll get admission to the evening Open Skate Session with conventional skate rental for just $6.

 

photo: David P via Yelp

Getting There

Walk
The Sellwood neighborhood is home to charming cottages, a classic church chapel, and the Sellwood Park. If you want to make a day of it, consider stopping at Sellwood Park first to blow off some steam at the playground, where there are also accessible restrooms and picnic tables on hand.

Roll
Oaks Park is right along the lovely Springwater Corridor Trail, a 21 mile-long multi-use trail. The paved surface is wide and perfect for strollers, bicycles, wheelchairs, skates or just plain walking. Adjacent to the Oaks Bottom Wildlife Refuge, it’s common to spot heron and woodpeckers, and perhaps even a bald eagle or deer! Play a game of “eye spy” with your little nature lover on the way to the amusement park for a well-rounded day. Safe and ample bike parking is available onsite, just remember to bring your bike lock.

Drive
Bringing the whole fam? Maybe it makes the most sense to drive. Oaks Park boasts plentiful parking, and it is always free! Do keep in mind that special events (festivals, roller derby games, etc.) can make parking extremely challenging, so check the Oaks Park website beforehand to plan your day. Pro tip: on busy event days, park in one of the nearby neighborhoods and stroll down via the Springwater Trail (see above).

Photo: Norma R. via Yelp

Rides

The most exciting part (for most kids, anyway), are the rides! From giant slides to the carousel, here’s a ride-rundown for those visiting with kids under 10. All rides shown below are included with any of the three ride bracelet options (starting at $18.95), or are $4.95 for a single ride ticket.

Big Pink Slide
This fun classic has three tracks, so bring a bestie and race them down to the bottom! Rider requirements: 34″ to ride alone, under 34″ may ride with an adult.

Chipper’s Choppers
Ride your own mini-motorcycle in a fast circle with friends! Mom or dad can also sit beside. Rider requirements: 34″ to ride alone, under 34″ may ride with an adult, 54″ and taller must ride in the sidecar.

Jump Boats
Go up, up and jump as though you’re riding the waves in a real boat! Rider requirements: 36″ to ride alone, under 36″ may ride with an adult.

Rockin Tug
This mighty tug boat sways and spins as passengers squeal with glee. Rider requirements: 42″ to ride alone, under 42″ may ride with an adult.

Sky Fighters
Go up, up, up in a colorful plane, before dipping back down to the ground. Great for the younger kids in your group! Rider requirements: Under 48″ tall.

photo: April Hasson

Toon Cars
Another perfect ride for the younger child, these little cars are complete with a steering wheel and roll on a wavy track. Rider requirements: Under 48″ tall.

Oaks Park Train
A mellow and scenic activity for the whole family, take a break on the train while taking in the sites of the park, located along the Willamette River. Rider requirements: 34″ to ride alone, under 34″ may ride with an adult.

Carousel
This hand-carved carousel from 1911 is complete with white tigers, deer, zebras, and colorful horses. Rider requirements: 34″ to ride alone, under 34″ may ride with an adult.

Ferris Wheel
Another ride for the whole family, the classis Ferris Wheel will take you up high enough to view the Willamette River and Portland’s West Hills. Rider requirements: 42″ to ride alone, under 42″ may ride with an adult.

Zoom Coaster
Just like a real roller coaster, but with littles allowed! Parents can join the fun, too. Rider requirements: 34″ to ride alone, under 34″ may ride with an adult.

Frog Hopper
Bounce up and down, and don’t forget to say “ribbit”! Rider requirements: 36″ or taller.

photo: April Hasson

Roller Skating

Don’t feel like rides, or the weather’s not cooperating? No trip to Oaks Park is complete without checking out the Oaks Park Roller Rink! The rink is the largest and oldest in the nation, boasting a Michigan maple floor, and the last live Wurlitzer pipe organ to operate in a U.S. roller rink.

The rink is open Tuesday-Sunday all year long, with special hours on holidays and school-out days, as well as theme days geared specifically towards families with young children. Check website for details.

Skating is included with any ride bracelet, or $7.50 plus $2 for skate rental without a ride bracelet.

Mini Golf

For another activity the whole family can try, check out Chipper’s Woods Miniature Golf, complete with waterfalls, funny obstacles, and bridges. Open Play is available when the amusement park is open to the public, March 23 – September 29, 2019. Admission is $8.95 per person. Chaperoning adults and youth 5 and younger are free.

Games

For a break from all of the other activities, try your hand at games, including balloon darts, basketball toss, water races, and a variety of arcade games, like air hockey and pin ball. Prices vary.

photo: Oaks Park

Food options at Oaks Park

For a healthy and affordable option, without waiting in lines, pack a picnic! Outside food and non-alcoholic beverages are welcome in the amusement park. First-come, first-served picnic tables are also available along the waterfront free of charge. If you do want to purchase onsite food or snacks, you’ll be pleasantly surprised at the prices. Because Oaks Park is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, their concessions are lower than probably any other theme park you’ll ever visit. Prices are $3.25 for a hamburger or slice of pizza, or $3.50 for nachos, cotton candy or an ICEE. Whole pizzas are available for $25 if you need to feed a crowd!

Basics

  • Cash, all major credit cards, Apple Pay, and Android Pay are accepted. ATMs are located onsite.
  • Locker rentals are available throughout the park for a .25 single use fee (bring quarters!)
  • Oaks Park’s facilities are ADA compliant and all restrooms are ADA accessible. The Carousel and Train are wheelchair accessible. Complimentary caregiver bracelets are available at Guest Services for guests assisting those with special needs.
  • Strollers are available to rent onsite. Baby changing stations are available in most restrooms. Guest Services can assist nursing mothers with finding privacy.
  • Leashed dogs are welcomed.

Hours

The Amusement Park is open late March through late September. Amusement park hours vary; see website or call 503-233-5777 for details. The amusement park is always closed on Mondays except on recognized holidays as listed on the website. The roller skating rink is open Tuesday – Sunday, year round.

What’s your favorite thing to do at Oaks Park? Let us know in the comments section below!

—April Hasson

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The Best BBQ Joints for Kids in Portland

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BBQ: it’s not fancy. It’s messy, meaty, with plenty of sides like cornbread to soak up all the extra sauce. You’ll definitely need to dunk the kids in the bath when you get home, because they might be happily covered with their meal by the end. Even if your kid isn’t an avid carnivore, there’s lots of yumminess to be found at Portland’s best BBQ joints, like Mac-n-Cheese, biscuits, and there are even vegan options. Read on for more!

Reverend's BBQ

In oft-overlooked Sellwood, Reverend’s hides some excellent bbq at excellent prices. The kids menu offers a small bbq plate for $4.95 with one side, and the goodness doesn’t stop there.

Adult bbq plates come with plenty of meat options, their sides options include the delicious, griddled polenta with creamed corn. With their long daily happy hour from 3-6pm, the whole family can chow down easily.

7712 SE 13th Ave.
Phone: 503-327-8755
Online: reverendsbbq.com

Russell St. BBQ

Around for almost 15 years now, the woman-owned Russell St BBQ has made its name in Portland, even expanding to a second location on Belmont last year. The platters are generous and delicious, and the ambiance is friendly and casual. BBQ options cover ribs, pulled pork, chicken, smoked sausage, and even tofu doused in sauce! The sides include all the classics: greens, beans, mac n cheese, cornbread and more. Share a platter with the kids, or let everyone pick their own-- you’re all going home happy.

Southern Kitchen
325 NE Russell St.
Phone: 503-528-8224

Southern Counter
4246 SE Belmont St.
503-528-8224
Online: russellstreetbbq.com

Podnah's Pit

One of Portland’s best, Podnah’s (Texan for “partner”) is Texas BBQ done right. The crew gets started smoking at 5am to get things ready by dinnertime, and the flavors ring true. Choose from three homemade sauces (House BBQ, Carolina Mustard, and Carolina Vinegar), and an array of meat. Kids will love a smorgasbord of sides to chow down on, and don’t forget the Texas Frito Pie!

Location: 1625 NE Killingsworth St.
Phone: 503-281-3700
Online: podnahspit.com

Pine Shed Ribs

This Lake Oswego joint offers up great BBQ with a beautiful outdoor patio! Get the family dinner to feed 4 people with bbq, 2 sides, cornbread and dessert. There’s no specific kids menu, but plenty of kid-friendly sides and messy, messy meat! What more could you need?

17730 Pilkington Rd.
Lake Oswego, OR
503-635-7427
Online: pineshedribs.com

Storr's Smokehouse

If you find yourself out in wine country, stop by downtown Newberg for lunch at Storr’s Smokehouse. Brisket, pulled pork, chicken wings, and ribs await-- or try them all with the Gran Daddy! Kids might be most excited, though, by their homemade ice cream. Be sure to take home a pint for later.

310 E 1st St
Newberg, OR
503-538-8080
Online: storrssmokehouse.com

Food Carts

Homegrown Smoker

Shh, don’t tell. This is not meat. (Ok, you might actually want to warn your meat-loving friends). This all-vegan deli and food cart offers a combo plate with tempeh, tofu, soy curls, and chikn. Don’t scoff, though! Douse all that in delicious sauce, and throw in hushpuppies and remoulade with a side of chow chow, and everyone might just lick their plate clean.

Homegrown Smoker Vegan BBQ Cart
4233 N Mississippi
Phone: 503-227-3823

Homegrown Smokehouse & Vegan Deli
1628 SW Jefferson
Phone: 971-330-0324
Online: homegrownsmoker.com

Road Runner BBQ

Nestled in one of the best food cart pods in the city, Road Runner BBQ comes swinging with some of the best Southern BBQ! The slim menu offers an array of meats with a choice of four sides, or sandwiches. The friendly service will charm your kids, and the outdoor seating areas allow for plenty of wiggles and noises.

Carts on Foster
5205 SE Foster Rd
Portland, OR
503-310-2728
Online: https://roadrunnerbbqpdx.com/

Matt's BBQ

Making mac n cheese with queso is always the way to a kids’ heart. The whole family can share the Total Shebang with three meat choices, like beef brisket, ribs, or sausage, or for individual tastes you can get tacos or sandwiches. And if the kids only want more cheese, just get them chips and queso. You’ll find Matt’s on N Mississippi near Prost.

4233 N Mississippi Ave
503-504-0870
Online: mattsbbqpdx.com

Bonus: Felton and Mary’s BBQ Sauce

Bonus points to this bottled sauce for do it yourself goodness!

Campbell’s BBQ restaurant was a mainstay of Old Portland, and now the grandson of owner’s Felton and Mary has revived the family recipes. Bring the goodness (and messiness!) home this summer with their perfectly balance sauces and spice rubs. Find them at New Seasons, Green Zebra Grocers, and select farmer’s markets.

Online: feltonandmary.com/

—Katrina Emery

A Guide to Portland’s Water Play Parks

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If the rising summer temperatures are elevating little tempers, let your clan cool down at one of Portland’s many spray parks or fountains. These accessible spritzers allow younger children to play more safely than at pools or swimming holes, but are fun for all ages! Try checking out one of the 15 splash pad sites through Portland Public Parks, or play in the fountains in and around Portland. Read on to get the rundown our favorites!

photo: bettie_xo via flickr

Essex Park
Located in the Mt. Scott – Arleta Neighborhood, Essex Park features a unique series of water spraying rings for your water baby to walk under, as well as a sprinkler system. The park also features an accessible playground and has ADA restrooms.

Where: SE 79th Ave & Center St.
When: The splash pad is on now -end of Sept., 11 a.m.—7 p.m.
Online: portlandoregon.gov/parks/finder/index.

photo: Matthew Oliphant via flickr

Director Park
One of the newest parks in the Portland Parks system, Director Park features an interactive “jet and burble” fountain that kids love. Parents will appreciate the park’s free WiFi and the onsite deli for snacks (and maybe even a glass of wine outside while the littles play). There is also a large-piece chess game to test your skills pre or post splash.

Where: SW Yamhill and Park Ave.
When: The fountain is open now-end of Sept., 9 a.m. – 10 p.m. Closed on Jul. 26.
Online: portlandoregon.gov/parks/52453

photo: April Hasson

Woodlawn Park
Another North Portland favorite is Woodlawn Park, which has a small splash pad with water spraying rings. The splash pad is at-level, meaning those in strollers or wheelchairs or otherwise unable to climb up and down stairs can enjoy the water fun as well. Bonus – coincide your visit with one of the Movies in the Park events held here each summer.

Where: NE 13th Ave & Dekum St.
When: The splash pad is on now-end of Sept., from 11 a.m. -7 p.m.
Online: portlandoregon.gov/parks/finder/index

Raymond Park
If you’re near the Lents Neighborhood, bring your horseshoes for a quick game of toss at Raymond Park before dashing through the splash pad to cool down. This park also has nearby picnic tables for a post-splash snack.

Where: SE 118th Ave & Raymond St.
When: The splash pad is on now-end of Sept., from 11 a.m. -7 p.m.
Online: portlandoregon.gov/parks/finder/index.cfm

photo: Paul Kline via flickr

Jamison Square
The Pearl District’s Jamison Square hosts a fountain designed to mimic a shallow tidal pool. Water flows from stone rock formations into a large wading pool, which is perfect for youngsters. There are also grassy, shaded spots for setting up a blanket in the park and nearby cafes. This park can get crowded in the hot summer months, so plan accordingly, especially as related to metered parking nearby.

Where: 810 NW 11th Ave.
When: Park hours are 5 a.m.-12 p.m.
Online: portlandoregon.gov/parks/finder/index.cfm

Beaverton City Library Park
If you’re located in Beaverton, check out the Beaverton City Library Park (across from the library), which has spray fountains, as well as a play structure, picnic tables and a coffee and snack vendor in the park.

Where: 12375 SW 5th St, Beaverton
When: The park is open 8 a.m. to dusk
Online: beavertonoregon.gov/Facilities/Facility/Details/City-Park-Fountain-10

photo: The Skanner News via flickr

Peninsula Park
With both a fountain and a splash pad, Peninsula Park has the best of both worlds, plus gorgeous roses all summer long. The park also hosts not one, but two playgrounds for children of all ages, plus ample shaded areas, picnic tables and restrooms. The splash pad is on now through the end of September, from 11 am -9 pm.

Where: 700 N Rosa Parks Way
When: The splash pad is on now-end of Sept., from 11 a.m. -7 p.m.
Online: portlandoregon.gov/parks/finder/index.cfm

Note: Like a swimming pool, fountains recirculate treated water. Play all day, but actually consuming the water is not recommended.

Where is your favorite place to play in a fountain or splash pad when it’s hot out? Let us know in the comments section below!

— April Hasson & Annette Benedetti

 

 

Free and Fun Summer Activities

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After a snowy winter and rainy spring, we’ve earned some summer fun with the fam! There are plenty of opportunities to see movies, go for a hike, and enjoy outdoor concerts. Best of all – the resources we’ve rounded up here are all free! Read on for our favorite fun summer.

Movies in the Park

Portland Parks and Recreation hosts a whopping 39 free movie events this summer, each offering free popcorn and pre-show entertainment in the form of live musicians ranging from jazz to classical to rock. Check out screenings of Moana, Star Wars and Ferdinand, amongst many others, with friends and family under the stars. Leashed dogs are allowed, too!

When: 6:30 p.m., nights vary
Where: various Portland area parks
Online:portlandoregon.gov/parks/69554

Washington Park Summer Festival

There isn’t a setting more beautiful to enjoy music than the Washington Park International Rose Test Garden. This year’s lineup features Rejoice! Diaspora Dance Theater; Opera in the Park—Tosca by Giacomo Puccini; and Orquestra Pacifico Tropical. Come early to enjoy hands on art activities, and to secure your spot with a blanket. Try taking the MAX to avoid parking congestion, and bring plenty of snacks.

When: July 27-29 at 6 p.m.
Where: International Rose Test Garden Amphitheater, 410 SW Kingston Ave.
Online: portlandoregon.gov/parks/article/489145

Swimming

Need a way to beat the heat? Free Open Play swimming is offered at the following locations and times:

Mon. 1-4 p.m., Creston Pool, 4454 SE Powell Blvd.               
Tues. 1-2:30 p.m., Montavilla Pool, 8219 NE Glisan St.
Wed. 1:15–3:00 p.m., Grant Pool, 2300 NE 33rd Avenue
Wed. 2–3:45 p.m., Columbia Pool, 7701 N Chautauqua Blvd.
Wed. 7:30–8:50 p.m., Sellwood Pool, 7951 SE 7th Avenue
Thurs. 1:05–2:55 p.m., Peninsula Pool, 700 N Rosa Parks Way
Fri. 1:45PM–4:30 p.m., Pier Pool, 9341 N St. Johns Ave.

Online: portlandoregon.gov/parks/article/489147

Hawthorne Street Fair

Enjoy live music, activities and over 100 local businesses and vendors at this eclectic outdoor-based event. Enjoy free samples, demos and discounts. Kids (and adults!) will love the face painting, misting tent, crafts and photo booth.

When: August 26
Where: SE Hawthorne Blvd
Online: hawthornepdx.com/event/hawthorne-street-fair/

Portland Children’s Museum

When it’s hot outside, head inside to the museum where children are not only allowed to touch the art, but are encouraged to explore the exhibits! Splash in the Water Works area before checking out the Treehouse Adventure area, and end with a calming tactile visit to the clay studio.

When: Free on the first Friday of each month from 4-8 p.m.
Where: 4015 SW Canyon Rd.
Online: portlandcm.org

Nature Walks

The Friends of Tryon Creek program integrates nature exploration, art, literature, movement, and outdoor play.  Each walk has a theme, such as salamanders, forest moles, or worms. The program is geared toward families with children aged 2-6, but all are welcome.

When: Thursdays 11 a.m.-12:15 p.m., Fridays 11 a.m.-12:15 p.m and 1-2:15 p.m. from May 1 through June 1, 2018. Register in person 30 minutes before program.
Where: The Friends of Tryon Creek Nature Center, 11321 SW Terwilliger Blvd
Online: https://tryonfriends.org/calendar/2018

Urban Walks

The City of Portland’s Ten Toe Express walks are great for little history buffs, budding architects, future landscapers, and babies in strollers. Most of the walks are relatively flat and paved, and are typically about three miles long over about two hours. Each walk has a different theme. Check out The Historic Black Williams Project walk, which acknowledges the complex and changing history of Williams Avenue by viewing 40 art installation honoring the role Portland’s Black community, or the Feig & Jacobberger Historic Residences walk, which tours apartments and single-family homes in NW Portland designed by two of Portland most prolific architects.

When: Thursdays at 6 p.m. and Saturdays at 9 a.m. from May 3 through September 8, 2018.  No registration is required.
Where: Each walk starts from a designated starting point, varying by tour.
Online: portlandoregon.gov/transportation/article/401203

What’s your favorite free summer activity? Let us know in the Comments section below!

— April Hasson

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If you’re lucky enough to be celebrating a birthday in the spring or summer, how about planning an epic outdoor adventure party? There are plenty of unique and exciting options in the Portland area, sure to please any interest and group. Scroll down for our top picks!

Oregon Dream Ponies

While you’d need to trek to Newberg for this venue, you’re sure to please your birthday guest of honor and their friends! Their Lesson Style Pony Party hosted by Cowboy Bob and Cowgirl Kim brings together fun and learning to allow children to learn horse safety and practice grooming. Then each child is provided with an equestrian helmet to ride a pony with a set of play-based activities. The party includes time at a covered picnic table area.

4-8 children 30 minute lesson $55 each
16725 NE Hillside Dr, Newberg
(503) 710-2092
Online: oregondreamponies.com

Oaks Park

For little thrill seekers, head to Oaks Park, which offers party packages for eight children, including ride bracelets, roller skating admission and skates, a reserved birthday table, ice cream, cotton candy, soda, photos with Chipper the Squirrel, and a special gift for the birthday person! They also offer mini golf packages for your pint-sized putter, if that’s more your speed.

Rides Package $215
Mini Golf Package $100
7805 SE Oaks Park Way
503-233-5777
Online: oakspark.com

Bella Organics

If your birthday boy or girl loves both farms and rides, combine the two by visiting Bella Organics! Each party includes a ride on the grain train or cow train around the farm. Take a spin through the pumpkin patch and corn fields, then pick your own pints of berries or vegetables before settling in to reserved picnic tables to enjoy snacks (bring your own, or purchase onsite). Party bookings are available mid-June – September 30. Each party includes one fresh fruit platter and one veggie platter for 30 people, and one u-pick pint per child.

$150 for 15 children
16205 NW Gillihan Rd.
503-621-9545
Online: bellaorganic.com

Trackers Portland

Cupid isn’t the only one good at shooting a bow and arrow, you can too! Trackers Portland’s Archery parties feature experienced instructors to assist everyone in safely using archery gear at the range. Plus, the party area with tables and chairs is the perfect spot to take a cake break. Archery is best for ages 7 and above.

$149 for 10 guests
4617 SE Milwaukie Ave.
503-345-3312
Online: trackerspdx.com

Kruger’s Farm

Old McDonald had…an urban farmer-themed birthday party at Kruger’s Farm! Hang out with chickens, Matilda the pig, and pick your own pint of berries (included in the party package), all while roaming around this Sauvie Island farm. This open-sky party will surely be memorable for kids of any age.

$150 for 15 children
17100 NW Sauvie Island Rd.
503-621-3489
Online: krugersfarm.com

Oregon Zoo

For a birthday party that will not soon be forgotten, head to the Oregon Zoo. Let your little animal lover celebrate their special day with the elephants, lions and all the little monkeys they call friends. The party package includes zoo admission for the birthday child, party room (in the Sunset Room) for two hours and standard set up of tables and chairs. The room has a maximum capacity of 30 people.

Enhance your Zoo party with catering (15 person minimum) that includes pizza, drinks and assorted cookies. An animal expert will also introduce the party to each animal, provide natural history information and answer questions. Types of mammals, reptiles and arthropods that may enhance your event include rabbits, desert tortoises and ball pythons.

When you’re all done with your cake, head outside to explore 62 acres crawling (and swimming, flying, swinging, and slithering) with animals.

$500 for non-members. $475 for members.
4001 SW Canyon Rd.
503-220-2789
Online: oregonzoo.org

 

What’s your favorite outdoor birthday spot? Spill the beans in the comments!

—April Hasson

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Top 10 Essential Services for New Parents

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As incredibly exciting as having a new baby (or babies!) is, it can also be a little overwhelming and come with periods of fatigue and self-doubt. Fortunately, the Portland community has plenty of resources that offer support. Lift your spirits, skills, and/or sanity with these local services designed with new parents in mind! Read on to find out more.

Bridgetown Baby

Perhaps you had a doula for your birthing process, but what about a postpartum doula? Families need support after the baby is born as well, and Bridgetown Baby will help you through those busy and bumpy first months. Services include infant sleeping solutions and soothing techniques, support with postpartum recovery, sibling care, and even cooking and light housekeeping. This is a great resource for new parents who don’t have a lot of family or friends nearby who can assist, or for those needing extra support and overnight care.

Online: www.bridgetownbaby.com

Ready, Set, Eat!

Believe it or not, you don’t have to be Oprah to have your own chef. Ready Set Eat’s Personal Chef Services provides healthy, gourmet meals prepared in your home. Have a chef come prepare a week, or even an entire month’s worth of lunches and dinners to store in your freezer to have ready-to-eat meals at your fingertips for those first busy months after a baby. This is perfect for those with special dietary restrictions in lieu of a traditional “meal train” from family and friends. Gift certificates are also available.

Online: www.readyseteat.net

TumblePDX

Let’s be honest, we might be able to deal with the sleepless nights, endless bottles and diapers, and crying, but do we have to deal with laundry, too? Tumble PDX will literally take your dirty laundry off your hands! Their valets work seven days a week, picking up your laundry and dropping it back off, clean and folded, within 48 hours. Magic? We think so. Wash and fold rates are $1.99/lb with a $5.99 delivery fee.

Online: www.tumblepdx.com

La Leche League

The La Leche League’s mission is to help mothers worldwide to breastfeed, through mother-to-mother support, encouragement, information, and education, and to promote a better understanding of breastfeeding as an important element in the healthy development of the baby and mother. The Portland chapter offers monthly meetings for moms seeking support on their breastfeeding journey. Check their website for local listings.

Online: www.lalecheleagueoregon.webs.com/localportland

Instacart

Sometimes the simple act of running to the grocery store can be a chore for parents, especially those with young children. Now, you can outsource it from the comfort of your home! Shop for groceries and household necessities from local stores like Food Front, New Seasons, and Green Zebra, along with other larger merchants. Delivery is available same-day, and they offer free delivery on your first order.

Online: www.instacart.com

Miracle of Nurture

Have you made it through pregnancy, childbirth and those first few weeks or months home, and now it’s time to return to work? Ease the stress of this important transition time with Miracle of Nurture’s “Back-to-Work Preparations Visit”. The experts will provide guidance about common questions and experiences that come up when parental leave ends, plus they will create a personalized plan to help ease your transition. Other services include milk expression education and communicating with caregivers. This service is typically 1-1.5 hours, with a standard fee of $125, or a sliding scale reduced range of $50 to $115.

Online:  www.miracleofnurture.com/visits

Baby Blues Connection

Baby Blues Connection provides support, information and resources to families at risk for or experiencing postpartum depression or anxiety. There are a number of groups geared specifically for women, as well as specialized dad’s support groups, which focus on the male perspective of pregnancy and parenting. Infants are welcome to join. All groups are free of charge, LGBTQ friendly, and confidential.

Offered at various times in multiple locations throughout the Portland Metro area
Online: www.babybluesconnection.org/finding-help/bbc-groups/

Mother & Child Education Center

Located in the Hollywood District, the Mother & Child Education Center offers free classes on parenting, breastfeeding, and caring for babies. Workshops are geared towards parents from pregnancy through five years of age. Babies four months and younger are welcome to join caregivers at the classes. The Center also offers clothing, wipes and diapers to families in need during their monthly Client Care Days.

1515 NE 41st Ave
503-249-5801   
Online: www.momchildpdx.org

FIT4MOM

While FIT4MOM is primarily an exercise-based program for new moms, they also host weekly playgroups, monthly Moms' Nights Out events, and other fun family activities, like playdates and theme nights. Check out their Body Back fitness and nutrition program, or Stroller Strides, a full-body fitness class that parents can do with their children in strollers. Event days, times and locations are listed on their Facebook page. Class prices vary, but the first class is free.


Offered at various times in multiple locations throughout the Portland Metro area
Online: www.southeastportland.fit4mom.com

Book Babies

Book Babies is an ongoing class offered at Multnomah County Library through multiple branch locations. Caretakers and babies from birth to a year enjoy songs, books, and playtime together. Not only is it free to attend, but you’ll meet other new families to create lifelong friendships with.

Offered at various times in multiple locations throughout Multnomah County
Online: www.multcolib.org/events

What are your favorite local family resources? Let us know in the comments below!

— April Hasson

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