Sunny days ahead: five local outdoor spaces

As summer approaches and the sun starts peeking over the clouds, spending time outside can become more appealing. The options of what to do outside can range from getting a bite to eat to hiking a trail. For some inspiration and to know the potential options, here is a list of activities and places to go when it is sunny. 


1. Maddax Woods

Tucked away on Riverside Street, the park is seven acres containing gravel pathways through the woods. Along with the trails, there is Willamette River access and picnic tables. While walking, there are places to view the Great Blue Heron Rookery on Goat Island. A rookery is a collection of nests clumped in high trees and this rookery supports up to 38 nesting pairs of herons. 

2. Wilderness Park

Consisting of Douglas firs and green vegetation, this park spans 51.4 acres. Similar to Maddax Woods, there are numerous pathways and hiking trails but it also contains small hills and steep steps, making it more of a hike. There are two main loops, one placed above Clark Street and the other just below. There is access to the park on foot on Oregon City Boulevard, Windsor Terrace, Clark Street, and Prospect Street. 

3. Mary S. Young

Located on the side of Highway 43, the park has hiking and biking trails for more than five miles. Across the 128 acres, the park also includes soccer fields, a dog park, restrooms, a sheltered area, picnic tables, and access to the river.

4. Willamette River

The local river provides opportunities to paddle board, kayak, take a boat out, and more. People can do so with their own equipment, or rent a paddleboard, kayak, pedal boat, or fiesta on the Paddle Oregon website. 

Willamette Park is situated next to the river on Volpp Street. Stretching for 15 acres, the park consists of multiple fields with space to play sports, places to sit, a play structure, boat ramps, docks, and more.

5. Downtown West Linn

With businesses lining the street, Willamette Falls Drive consists mainly of restaurants and other businesses. The restaurants vary from sit-downs with outdoor seating to quick snack spots, such as Para Juice Bar. 

From May 17 to Sept. 13, the Willamette Market takes place every Wednesday from 4—8 p.m. Here, locals have the opportunity to sell and display their products to others. The items sold include bouquets of flowers, jewelry, and more.

Stationed next to Dollar Street is the Willamette Garage, a collection of food carts. The eight different food carts, ranging from sushi to burgers, are accompanied by fire pits and covered seating. The Willamette Garage also holds events, such as “Family Feud,” a game where teams try to guess the most popular answer to questions, which takes place every Thursday from 6:30—8:30 p.m. Information about the menus and any upcoming events can be found on the Willamette Garage’s website.