Nestled between the Willamette River and its namesake mountains, Mount Pisgah Arboretum houses 209 acres rich with plant life. Ferns, mosses, and wildflowers abound in the arboretum's forests, gardens, and meadows, which visitors can explore along more than 7 miles of trails. In fact, the nonprofit's plant list tallies a whopping 67 families, 231 genera, and 339 species. Nearly 90 of the latter line the arboretum's entrance garden alone, including almost 60 types of Rhododendron.
Besides plants, Mount Pisgah Arboretum hosts diverse wildlife ranging from endangered western pond turtles to songbirds. Native amphibians and reptiles, meanwhile, live in the Visitor Center amongst a working beehive and microscopes for inspecting bugs or your thumb on accident. Elsewhere, guests can feast in the wooded picnic area or exchange vows at the Great Meadow's wedding ceremony sites. Throughout the year, the arboretum hosts plenty of other events and programs, including an annual mushroom festival and myriad nature walks.
Beautiful sylvan surroundings and ample training space greet visitors eager to jump in the saddle for Triple Rise Equestrian Center’s hunter/jumper lessons. Owner Rachel Marcotte, an Equestrian Studies graduate of Centenery College, ensures that her grounds and programs stay orderly and ride-ready. This focus on professionalism is what first attracted the University of Oregon Equestrian Team, which now calls the center its home turf. Though fit for highly competitive equestrians, the center also caters to the everyday rider with tailored programs and lessons. Students learn proper technique inside a 70 x 200m indoor arena or in the large outdoor arena, trotting upon footing that’s replaced every six months in order to keep it fresh and cover up any tracks to the platinum horseshoes that are buried in the middle. Youngsters ages 6 to 12 can also make a smooth foray into the sport or brush up on already-acquired skills during five-day summer camps.
The classrooms at the independent, nondenominational Oak Hill School overlook the lush woodlands of the south Eugene hills. Across its 72-acre campus, flowers bloom, trees cast shimmering shade onto grasses, and birds tweet in iambic pentameter. It's plenty of space for Oak Hill's classes, whose student-to-teacher ratios of no more than 1:18 help staff tend to the individual tree as well as the forest. A lively, college-preparatory curriculum centers on academics, arts, and character in programs for kindergarten through 12th grade. Summer programs let students from all over the area share in the school's spirit of intellectual exploration, whether they're indulging a passion for math or leaping into a new language.
At Camp Putt Adventure Golf Park, colored balls carom along the greens of two 18-hole courses spread across two idyllic acres. Rustling trees and ponds provide the setting for relaxing rounds, during which players must putt their way through logs, around flowerbeds, and past other obstacles to keep their scores low.
At Firs Bowl Lanes, brightly colored house bowling balls glide down 24 synthetic and wood lanes as automatic scoring systems prevent exaggeration-prone players from claiming to have bowled a 3,000. Anchoring the bowling center’s concourse, these lanes attract both league and open bowlers, who frequent special weekend events such as Friday Family Night and the neon-lit Kosmic Bowl. The center’s amenities include bumper lanes, a lottery, video games, and a diner-style snack bar where guests sit on low-slung barstools while enjoying food, beer, and other beverages.
When it was founded in 1987, Frame Central was a social hub for artists, and was even curiously named for facial hair. However, Beard Outlet has since morphed into a seven-location franchise, dedicated to simplifying the framing process. The shops’ onsite stock of matboard, frame moulding, and other key supplies ensures speedy DIY framing projects—which visitors can complete in an hour—and single-day professional framing. An array of pre-framed mirrors and artwork allows shoppers to enhance their blank walls without taping a napping friend to them. Shoppers can also stock up on framing supplies such as case glass and hanging hardware.