I’ve been back from Oregon for about a week and a day now, and it’s really time to clear out my files. So here now are the attractions I had put on the list, but never got to see. I’m not complaining, afterall, I did get to see sprayfoam art, the US’s only municipal elevator, the world’s tallest barber pole, the Spruce Goose, Mt. Tabor, and the Velveteria. Clearly, Oregon has a lot to offer wacky travelers.
Anyway, I found these on RoadsideAmerica.com, and if I ever get back to the state, I may have to look them up.
There are reports of a museum of BMW Isetta bubble cars in Eugene. A 1998 report describes it thusly:
Home of one of the largest BMW Isetta Collections, cars, parts, toys, and just plain old fun small car stuff. Home of the First Documented Isetta to actually cross the USA Ever. This was done in 1993 by Big Bill Darland. “A Little Goes A Long Way,” he has a small amusement ride boat he tows with his Isetta and also a drag race one too, with parachute, wing, slicks, wheely bars, and also the ski’s for running his Isetta in the wintertime. Gracious host welcomes visitors all the time!!!
At the time, it was reported to be at 2692 Tandy Turn Eugene Oregon, but a 2004 report tells us it moved without saying where it went:
We spoke to one of the neighbors and the Isetta owner moved a couple of years ago to the relief of the neighborhood. Like many ‘cool’ places to visit, it is not so great to live next door to a yard full of cars and their parts.
Moving further west, there’s a report of carnivorous plants in Florence:
About 4 miles north of Florence, Oregon, is the Darlingtonia Waystation. Darlingtonia are cobra lilies, a carnivorous plant that rather resembles a cobra. They are indigenous to the area, and this bed was saved when the pacific coast highway was put in. There are wooden walkways, picnic tables and helpful signs. It isn’t quite manmade, but without the boardwalk, it’d be pretty messy taking a looksee. A little creepiness in an idyllic setting.
Portland, meanwhile, boasts a hat museum:
America’s only Hat Museum with 600 hats, located in the Ladd-Reingold House in Ladd’s Addition, 6 minutes from downtown Portland. Four collections: Vintage, Men’s, Novelty and Today’s Hats. Also weird minor collections of things like John Steinbeck’s door stop, British phone booth, couch made out of a 1966 Cadillac, the wedding cake from “The Woman Who Married Her House,” the topless 1927 roadster that crossed the US twice, collections of eyeglasses, hamburgers, crowns and shoes with unusual heels. “The quirkiest attraction in Portland,” and all this stuff is carefully arranged in the old Ladd-Reingold House — on the National Historic Registry and featured on HGTV’s “If Walls Could Talk” show.
Admission is said to be $10, but hours are by appointment only. Call now for your reservation 503-232-0433.
Final note: I wasn’t expecting to find, but stumbled across a cluster of Iron Mountain warehouses in the middle of a field off Route 34 between Corvallis and Lebanon. Call me naive, but I would have preferred to continue with my ridiculously fanciful belief that they really did store stuff in a vault in a mountain somewhere, or anywhere other than these plain and vulnerable looking warehouses in the field.