Daily Archives: August 11, 2008

Ghost towns, music and fish

A good sized busy weekend. We missed the farmers’ market but Brian got to sleep in so it was completely worth it. Mostly we just hung out on Saturday during the day, I think.

Symphony in Grant Park
Symphony in Grant Park in NE Portland.

Saturday night, we walked to Grant Park to see the Symphony. Portland has concerts in the park all summer, and it switches parks. Next week, the symphony is at Laurelhurst Park, which I like, so we may try to make it to that too.

After they handed all the children in the park recorders and whistles, we decided that that might be enough culture for one day, and walked back to the house to hang out for a bit before going to see some bands – we saw New York Rifles, Oh Darling and Another Cynthia. A pretty good show, although Another Cynthia definitely was the best as always. They played some stuff not on the two CDs I have, nice.

Really wanted to stay out and have a drink upstairs after the show, but we had plans on Sunday to do some exploring, so it was home to bed.
Shaniko Hotel and wood sidewalk
Shaniko Hotel and wood sidewalk in Shaniko, central Oregon.

Sunday, we grabbed Jimm and headed out along the Gorge for a drive, turning into Central Oregon to see what had been billed as a ghost town. It was a neat old town, Shaniko, but not really a ghost town.

Still, it was super awesome to talk to the weaver who hangs out at the school house, and walk on the wooden sidewalks and check out all the old buildings in the middle of nowhere. Central Oregon in that area used to be one big sheep herd, and Shaniko was set up to process the wool and act as a clearinghouse. I think the number the weaver told us was that there were 100,000 sheep wandering around. During the Dust Bowl, there was a huge drought which killed off most of the sheep (except for one large ranch that had been foresighted enough to get grazing rights to some pasture on the other side of the Cascades) and that sort of ranching just sort of fell by the wayside, taking Shaniko with it.

Jimm and Brian outside the Shaniko Cafe
Jimm and Brian eating lunch outside of the Shaniko Cafe in Shaniko, Oregon.

We had a good picnic sitting on the side of the old closed hotel – salad, blueberries, strawberries, hummus, pita, the last of the blueberry muffins I made last week.

Cars in Shaniko
Cars in Shaniko, Oregon.

Lonely Car in Shaniko, Oregon
Lonely car in Shaniko, Oregon.

Drove through the country some more until we found a mountain finder which showed us that we were looking at Three Sisters, Mt Washington, Mt Hood, Mt St Helens, Mt Rainier, Broken Top, and Three Fingered Jack. Pretty cool. When Brian got into the car at the mountain finder, he reached down and picked up a huge fist full of spent bullets. I didn’t look but he said that the ground was completely covered with them. Heh. Hopefully they were shooting at tumbleweeds and not at cars.

Matchbook cover
Vintage Dan & Louis Oyster Bar matchbook cover

Finished the weekend by eating at Dan & Louis Oyster Bar finally. I have matches from the 70s when my parents used to go there. The restaurant is celebrating its 101st anniversity. Really cool atmosphere. The clam chowder was amazing; the fish I had was not so much. It was just okay, when we go back I’m going to get oysters next time. Very cool place to stop and get a beer and some seafood.