After running a sawmill for 15 years in Corvallis, Mode and Babe sold it, retired, and bought a 74-acre parcel of land just because they wanted it—even though they had no plans for its use. At the urging of their friends, Mode and Babe decided to build a nine-hole golf course, not letting their lack of experience with the game dissuade them. Since that spontaneous founding in the 1950s, Marysville Golf Course has been operated by the same family and has served Eugene-area golfers with a nine-hole USGA-rated course that’s appropriate for all ages and experience levels. A first-come, first-served policy rewards early risers and sleep-skipping permagolfers, and new sand traps and greens comprise an elegant landscape over which golf balls briefly orbit before being dragged down by gravity. Additionally, a covered driving range allows for long-distance putting during thunderstorms or temporary ice ages, and the pro shop carries name brands such as Nike and Callaway in addition to a selection of new and used clubs.
A USHPA-certified advanced and tandem instructor, John of Oregon Hang Gliding School has taken to the skies on hang gliders since 1990 and taught the sport to newcomers since 1997. He also advises the curriculum for a university engineering program laying out pointers in a systematic way, and discouraging the use of protractors as weapons. Under John’s guidance, students begin with introductory lessons and ground school before advancing along the path to earning individual pilot ratings.
During Bite of Benton, dozens of local restaurants, wineries, breweries, and food producers fill the nearly 4 acres of Corvallis Central Park with gourmet bites and complex sips. As guests wine and dine, the sounds of music drifts across the grounds as bands tickle the rafters of the park's famed gazebo. Previous musical guests have included Oregon-based classic-rock cover band Big Boy and the Toys, providing a soundtrack for snacks such as gelato, tacos, hot dogs, and Middle Eastern cuisine.
Captain Ryan of Coastal Pro Guide Service has been fishing the waterways of Oregon for his entire life. He knows the glint of the salmon's scales, the movement of a sturgeon's passage, and the favorite hiding places of crabs and clams like the back of his hand. He shares that expertise with guests on guided fishing trips aboard his 17- or 22.5-foot boat. In addition to providing the means of transport, Coastal Pro Guide Service supplies fishers with rods, bait and tackle, and safety gear. Guests are encouraged to bring their own food and drink, fishing license, and sunscreen. Captain Ryan loves to entertain his company, sharing the joy he gets from fishing every day.
Handicap Accessible: Yes
Staff Size: 1 person
Most popular offering: Fall chinook
Pro Tip: Dress for the weather
Good for Kids: Yes
For nearly 30 years, Mudslinger Events/Oregon Trail Runs has encouraged Oregonians to explore their state by foot or by wheel. Started by a group of mountain biking enthusiasts, the organization creates runs and rides that get the blood pumping—including its namesake event, the Mudslinger, which sends cyclists racing through the Starker Forests. Off the bike, trail runs to the top of Mary's Peak and probably not through the Alsea Falls give participants a new perspective on the lush Northwest landscape.
Snuggled up next to the gorgeous Yaquina Bay, Oregon Coast Aquarium showcases the intricate sea life found on the Pacific Coast. Visitors can peer into the personal lives of outgoing ocean dwellers in the Passages of the Deep, which guides guests through the underwater ecosystems of the state's coast. Disciples of the sea can chat about the Wall Street Journal ’s recent article about the ink market with the giant Pacific octopus or watch public feedings of the largest sea otter community in the state—featuring the antics of the cheeky charmer northern otter Mojo. Merry mariners can swap shanties with the sleek and vocal sea lions or harbor seals, and touchy tourists can acquaint themselves with tide-pool residents in the Rocky Shores touch pool.