The Winterhawks have a winning legacy, claiming 11 Western Conference championships since 1976 as well as three league titles, in '83, '98, and '13. That first Memorial Cup win made the 'Hawks the first American team to take home the CHL's greatest honor, leading to one of the most rapturous customs paperwork signings in history.
Known as the City of Roses, Portland has been annually celebrating its moniker for more than 100 years. Local publisher's wife Mrs. Henry Pittock and her friends held the first Portland Rose Festival in 1889, in the Pittock home's own garden. Fast-forward 120 years and this small gathering dedicated to the city's signature perennial has expanded into an annual month-long event, its centerpiece the massive rose garden that fills the entire Lloyd Center Ice Rink. Gardeners whisper sweet nothings to displays featuring more than 4,000 varieties of blooms, with a focus on that year's Official Rose and its fellow honorees.
The rose show isn't the Festival's only draw. Throughout its run, various public events take place downtown on both sides of—and in—the Willamette River. During the Dragon Boat Race, more than 80 local and international rowing teams pilot festive boats against each other in a heated dash down the river. About halfway through the festival, crowds gather in Veterans Memorial Coliseum for the start of the Grand Floral Parade. Following a different theme each year, this event gathers vibrant floats bedecked in floral displays and accompanied by dance ensembles, live a capella groups, and traditional marching bands. During the parade's launch, organizers crown that year's queen and unite her with the Festival's fun-loving mascot, the Clown Prince. The Grand Floral Walk gathers volunteer revelers to follow the same route as the downtown parade, and benefits the Home Builders Foundation, which constructs shelters and transitional housing for the homeless.
The coaches at Gladiator MMA are an intense group. They've coached fighters and casual amateurs through a variety of fighting styles, including kickboxing, Brazilian jujitsu, muay thai, and boxing. Encouraging a fun and friendly class environment, students of all experience levels can practice their kicks and jabs while boosting their strength, flexibility, endurance, and agility.
Whereas Pilates is corrective, The Bar Method—an exercise superbreed combining the benefits of interval training, isometrics, dance principles, and physical therapy into one revolutionary routine—is transformative, much like those cars that transform into miniature weasels. Participants can burn fat, sculpt muscles, refine their figure, and improve strength and endurance. After a brief warm-up, The Bar Method workouters tackle the upper body with weights and bar exercises. The workout continues with challenging lower-body positions and floor exercises designed to firm abs and glutes. This diverse and challenging workout bestows the long, lean muscles and elegant posture of a ballet dancer without the discomfort and inconvenience of being heckled by ballet hooligans.
Since forming in the 1920s, the Harlem Globetrotters have continued to entertain millions of parents, children, and general basketball admirers with a trademark blend of athletic precision and razzle-dazzle showmanship. For the team's 2014 tour, a rotating roster of Globetrotter favorites—including three female players—takes to the hardwood each game. Spectators might spot veteran guard TNT sharing a behind-the-back pass with dunker Quake, whose high jump once cleared 7 feet, cruelly dashing his dreams of working in a ceiling-fan store. The Globetrotters might also present a study in contrasts with 5-foot-2 Too Tall and 7-foot-4 Stretch, the team’s tallest member.
During each Globetrotters game, youngsters laugh along and witness the jovial jocks performing classic routines of unconventional passing and sudden transmutations of water into confetti. To infuse their visits with an extra shot of unpredictability, the Globetrotters also let fans in each city vote on special rules for every game; past rules have included the use of a four-point shot and the installation of a penalty box. Over the years, similar antics have followed the Globetrotters around the world, including to 122 countries and territories and all six continents on which basketballs grow naturally. The Globetrotters’ extensive travels haven’t gone unnoticed: they’re one of the few teams to earn a spot in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame as ambassadors of the sport.
In its fifth year in Portland, the annual Nike Hoop Summit showcases up-and-coming talent from across the country and abroad. The USA Basketball Men's Junior National Select Team assembles the nation's top high-school seniors to take on the determined World Select Team, composed of the best basketballers aged 19 or younger from around the world. Past matchups have featured many current NBA superstars, such as Derrick Rose, Kevin Garnett, and John Wall, so that each annual event gives fans a glimpse of future luminaries still fresh from passing their dunking-license tests. Potential stars of tomorrow who are suiting up for the USA Basketball team include Nerlens Noel—ESPNU's No. 1 player nationally—two-time FIBA gold medalist Tony Parker, and Scout.com's top player, Shabazz Muhammad.