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U.S. History

Strangest Things in Portland You Might Not Know About

A neon sign that reads Portland, Oregon; a city with weird things

There is so much weirdness in and around Portland that the residents don’t spare a second look towards a ‘Lost chicken’ poster or a tiny horse tied up on the street. “Keep Portland Weird” is the unofficial motto of the Portland residents and after reading about some of the strangest things found in Portland, you will agree that they are doing a pretty good job at it.

Naked Bike Ride

Every year a naked bike ride is conducted in Portland, which is open for all to participate in. It has seen more than 10,000 riders in some years, with people flying in to participate in it. Such a huge crowd of naked people must be one of the strangest things in Portland, even with its standards.

Most Microbreweries Per Capita in the World

Portland is also known as ‘Beertown’ or ‘Beervana’ as it has the most microbreweries in any city in the world if you take the population into account.

Star Trek Play

A live-action Star Trek play ran in the city’s parks for straight five years from 2009 to 2013. The play was a big hit, but unfortunately ended due to unknown reasons.

Tied up Horses

If you go around the town, you will find many tiny miniature horses tied up with horse ties. Many residents leave blankets, hay, and treats near them.

Yarn Adornments

The town is decorated with people knitting and weaving yarn and placing the colorful embellishments wherever they see fit.

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Lost Chicken Posters

It is doubtful that all the ‘lost chicken’ posters found on Portland walls actually represent lost chickens, but whatever the case may be, it is a strange sight for outsiders although common for locals.

The Darth Vader

Dressed as the iconic villain Darth Vader and sometimes as other popular movie characters, a resident roams around the town on a unicycle, playing bagpipes that are on fire, literally. This musician, performer, and unicyclist moved to Portland in 2007 from North Carolina.

Casa Diablo

Casa Diablo is the world’s only vegan strip club with a slogan that reads, ‘We put the meat on the pole, not on the plate.’

The Largest Forested Park Within the City Limits in the U.S.

The forest park stretches for more than 13 kilometers, making it the largest within the city limits in the country. Hikers love it as it entails 110 km of trek trails. It is home to more than 60 species of mammals and more than 100 kinds of different birds.

The World’s Smallest Park

The Guinness Book of Records recognizes Portland’s Mills End Park as the world’s smallest park. A 0.29 square meters area was allotted for a light pole that was never installed, and someone planted flowers in that hole. It was recognized as a city park in 1976.


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The residents of Portland are unarguably living up to their unofficial motto. It is unclear who started the ‘Keep Portland Weird’ movement in the first place, but it sure continues to be a strange city.

Riley Brown
Written By

Riley is a history, lifestyle, and entertainment writer living in San Diego. He received his bachelor's degree in Journalism and Multimedia from the University of Oregon. His work has been featured in many finance and lifestyle publications throughout the US. When he is not writing, Riley enjoys reading and hanging out at the beach with his dog.


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