• Population- 3,700,760
  • Capital- Salem
  • Largest cities– Portland, Salem, Eugene
  • Time zone- Pacific
  • Date of Admission to the Union- February 14, 1859
  • Slogan- Alis volat propriis, or “She flies with her own wings”
  • State website URL- www.oregon.gov

Some of the most distinguishing features of Oregon are its geographic variants. For example, the state is credited with having one of the most diverse collections of ecosystems: high snowy mountain peaks, volcanic craters, rainforests, rocky coastline, and fertile valleys. Mount Hood is visible from quite a number of vantage points in downtown Portland and looms like a surreal and solitary, snow-capped giant in the distance. Juan de Fuca is the name given to a geologic region corresponding to a shifting plate under the crust of the Cascade mountain range, in the area of Oregon and Washington. This territory remains volcanic and seismic. Mount St. Helens and Mount Rainier are both located in Washington, not far outside the boundary of Oregon.

The Willamette Valley is considered one of the most productive and fertile valleys. This area is home to a huge assortment of family and large-scale farms, orchards, and vineyards. The “Fruit Loop” is a popular road trip through the Willamette. Especially busy at the height of harvest season, throngs of visitors go from orchard to farm stand to get the freshest vegetables and fruits, as well as a wide assortment of gourmet farm delicacies, and Willamette Valley wine.

The Columbia River, one of the nation’s biggest, is singularly responsible for much of the Willamette’s fertility. The river is one of the most popular among outdoor enthusiasts, especially enjoyable for white water rafters. Crater Lake National Park is one of the leading tourist hot spots. The view is spectacular—a rich blue water unlike that of almost any other lake and its the deepest. The crater is not from a meteor, but was created when the volcano, Mount Mazuma, imploded. The deepest point in the lake is measured at 4,000 feet. Crater Lake is on the Oregon commemorative quarter.

Hazelnuts grow abundantly in the Oregon climate and this makes the region a leader in U.S. hazelnut production. Other economic heavy-hitters include Nike, Inc., which maintains its headquarters in Beaverton, Oregon.