Since 1966, Outdoor School has been supplementing Oregon’s public-education system with lessons on the environment, ecology, natural resources, and flora and fauna held in a camp setting. Friends of Outdoor School was recently founded to preserve this experience for youth and to make it available to all students regardless of their socio-economic statuses.
During day-camp courses, student leaders from local high schools work with middle-school students to explore the wonders of science through hands-on outdoor activities and traditional camp experiences. Students remain active from sun up to sun down, conducting field studies, engaging in recreational activities, preparing meals, and building campfires. The student leaders emerge from the experience with greater leadership abilities and both sets of students can bring their newfound knowledge to their science and math classes.
Since opening its gates in 1946, Portland Meadows has hosted exhilarating thoroughbred and quarter-horse races on its 1-mile oval every year from July to December. As racehorses burst forth from the track's 12-stall starting gate every thirty minutes during nine daily races, crowds of up to 4,400 shout their favorite ponies' names from indoor and outdoor seats and cheer on jockeys in a secret language known only to horse whisperers. Adults may place wagers on the races, test their luck at video lottery terminals, or take a closer look at the horses at the saddling enclosure; meanwhile, kids can blow off steam at the HorsePlay Kids Zones, which welcomes guests every weekend. Admission is always free at Portland Meadows, as is parking in its 300,000-square-foot lot.
Following a curriculum designed by Dr. Lin Day, a British child-development expert, the classes at Baby Sensory help to forge the bond between parents and their infants by engaging all the baby’s developing senses. Sessions begin with a song accompanied with sign language before diving into one of 40 unique lesson plans, which incorporate everything from exercise and stretches to music, puppet shows, and tactile games with scarves and feathers. Parents and children then split off into an exploratory play area—suited for both noncrawlers and babies strapped into tiny roller skates—to engage in play together and meet other families in a comfortable and safe environment. Lessons conclude with more structured sensory activities based on the latest research and developmental theories.
Anytime Fitness, as the name suggests, is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and 365 days a year with nonstop security. Sprint to the sounds of gridiron battles on cardio machines outfitted with TVs or camouflage your skin’s capacity for blushing with six weeks of unlimited tanning-bed access. Eight basic group classes shred fat through catalyzed camaraderie, be it the heat-pounding boogie-down of Move & Groove or the stress-banishing breath control used in Gentle yoga. Muay Thai classes return from their summer hiatus to forge strength through cathartically vicious blows from the hands, feet, knees, elbows, and prehensile tail.