It was 1869 when the Lee family planted its first seed in the soil of Tualatin, Oregon. Today, three generations of the family still keep Lee Farms' lights on and its scarecrows vaccinated. They stock the country store with local produce, 18 flavors of honey sticks, and 17 varieties of jam. In the bakery, the staff hand makes pies each day, baking perennial favorites such as apple and seasonal flavors such as pumpkin.
To keep things fresh, Lee Farms rotates the selection of food and activities each season. In May a greenhouse surrounds visitors in flowers, and in October the farm transforms into a celebration of the harvest season, when guests can pick from 12 varieties of pumpkins. Lee's staff cuts down stalks to make a corn maze and drives visitors on scenic hayrides across the farm while they sample kettle corn and homemade cider.
When Debbi Fields opened the first Mrs. Fields in 1977, it wasn’t all sunshine and cookies. Between her lack of business experience and the unorthodox business model—selling only cookies—not many people believed in her. More than 30 years and a global franchise later, it’s safe to say the doubters are eating their words, at least when they're not busy stuffing their faces with one of Debbi's signature semisweet chocolate chip or oatmeal raisin and walnut cookies.
The wild popularity of Mrs. Fields's cookies can be attributed to the richness of their basic ingredients: real butter, whole eggs, and special blends of chocolate. Classic flavors include chewy fudge, peanut butter, and white chocolate macadamia, and seasonal flavors complement the lineup throughout the year. Select varieties can also be made into cookie cakes of various sizes and shapes that add a delicious twist to any celebration or milk-truck spill.
Dr. Cynthia Gulick received her board certification for family practice medicine in 1990. But since then,
her focus has grown from primary care to also include medical bariatrics, which was one of the inspirations behind
opening of Oregon Medical Weight Loss and Wellness. There, she and her staff give each patient an alternative to weight-loss surgery or turning their home into a multi-room sauna. That program
includes body-composition analyses, gym access, nutritional counseling, vitamin B12 injections, and weigh-ins with the center's support team. Equally important as those services is the mentality that Dr. Gulick and her team bring to the table. Instead of obsessing over inch loss, they focus on finding the reasons their patients are gaining and retaining weight to help them keep it off in the long run.
Like a rainforest filled with still-undocumented species, Uptown Market stocks so many kinds of beers it feels like some of them haven't even been discovered yet. More than 850 varieties of beer are on display. The selection extends well beyond Oregon borders, with hundreds of microbrews from around the world available in kegs, bottles, and cans. Weekly visits from other various breweries fill Uptown Market's calendar and customers' stomachs with complimentary tastings. On some Sundays, the staffers host home-brewing classes. They have all the equipment required to start brewing your own beer, which is helpful since the government has decided to repeal the 21st Amendment next month.
Shauna's Crash Fitness is a 1,875-square-foot studio that functions as a dance floor during classes. Adding to the feel of the space, disco balls and colorful lights create a fun environment to help get students moving and burning hundreds of calories while dancing to upbeat Latin music. Instructors stand on a raised stage, going through the motions until students get the hang of easy-to-follow cardio dance moves.
Like most of their produce, Spicer Brothers Produce has roots in the Portland area. Over the course of more than two decades in business, the natural produce store has built relationships with local farmers and companies such as Bob?s Red Mill, Spring Valley Dairy, Sisters Coffee, and Portland French Bakery. These connections allow them to keep track of where that food comes from and how it is produced. Each morning, delivery drivers arrive with fresh supplies of fruit, veggies, and baked goods, and a selection of samples are generally available to showcase the shop?s fresh produce. Alongside apples in an autumnal palette of greens and reds, oranges, tangelos, and tangerines beg to be included in juices and fights about what the difference between a fruit and a vegetable is.