7 Ways to Pay It Forward in Lake Oswego This Holiday Season 2021

For those of us blessed enough to live in Lake Oswego, our gratitude list runs long this time of year. November is a perfect time to pay all that gratitude forward.

Here are a few ways for you to do just that in and around our community.

FILL A STOCKING, FILL A HEART. You can become part of this all-volunteer army providing more than 3,000 handmade Christmas stockings to families, seniors, teens and homeless living in Clackamas County. For many people, these stockings (filled with much-needed items and special gifts) are the only presents they receive. Stockings are available for pickup at City Hall, 380 A Avenue with a list of items you may purchase and then return to the City Hall donation site.

WITH LOVE. This non-profit’s mission is to support foster families by providing safe, clean and quality clothing and supplies for children ages 0-6. They are holding their annual Season of Giving drive to provide holiday stockings to children placed in foster care in Oregon. You can participate in a variety of ways, one of which is to shop their Amazon Holiday Wish List.  Be sure to click “With Love Holiday’s Gift Registry Address” for free shipping and order ahead of holiday shipping delays. Please skip the gift wrap, as a volunteer team at Nike, Ind. is creating handmade pillowcases for gifting that the children can use well beyond the holidays.  

TUALATIN SCHOOL HOUSE PANTRY. This Oregon Food Bank affiliate serves families each month living in Tualatin, Durham, Lake Oswego, West Linn, and Wilsonville. Cash donations are welcome to buy essentials and can be done in person or online. Canned food donations are wanted and can be dropped off at the pantry during normal business hours. Currently, the most needed items are peanut butter, canned chili, canned pasta, canned beans, canned meats, pasta other than spaghetti, shampoo, powdered laundry detergent and dry pet food. Hours are Monday 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., Wednesday from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. and Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Volunteers are also needed in the food pantry as well as for delivering and picking up donations. If you would like to volunteer, complete the online form. The pantry is located on the lower level of Rolling Hills Church, 3550 SW Borland Road, Tualatin. 503.783.0721.

LAKE OSWEGO TOY DRIVE. Drop off new, unwrapped toys to the Lake Oswego Fire Department Main Station (300 B Avenue) or the Lake Oswego Public Library (706 Fourth Street) by noon on Friday, December 21. Donations will be delivered to families in need by the Tualatin Valley Elks Club. 503.635.0275.

HUNGER FIGHTERS OREGON. In 2014 when students at Lake Oswego Junior High realized that food insecurity is an issue even for Lake Oswego families, they started a club to address it. Today this official nonprofit distributes food from a pantry located at 2301 Hazel Road in the green house garage on the east side of the Lake Oswego High School campus. Nonperishable food donations can be left anytime in the container outside the pantry. Perishable as well as nonperishable food can be dropped off on Saturdays between 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Check online for a list of needed items and please note, they ask that you ensure your products are not expired. Cash is always welcome too which you can donate in person or online. Right now they are looking for $25 donations to help provide a turkey for each family. Just Venmo your donation to @hungerfighters or mail a check to P.O. Box 2215, Lake Oswego, OR. 97035. Volunteer help is also needed as a shopping assistant helping clients select their items and/or a gleaner, picking up donations from grocers and restaurants in the area as well as helping to stock the pantry. You can sign up online.

HANDS-ON PORTLAND. Check their calendar for ongoing as well as one-time volunteer opportunities. Many occur year-round such as serving at Grocery Shopping for Homebound Seniors or Serving Meals at a Transitional Home.

ONGOING WINTER COATS, GLOVES, FOOD AND NEW UNWRAPPED TOYS DRIVE. City Hall is also accepting donations for used, clean items for families in need throughout Clackamas County as well as new toys. You can drop them off at City Hall, 380 A Avenue. For more information call the Public Information Office at 503.635.0257.

If you’d like to count living in Lake Oswego as one of your blessings, give me a call at 503.939.9801. I’ve been a Realtor in Lake Oswego for over 30 years and would love to put my experience to work for you. Check out my website or get in touch below.

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10 Holiday Activities We Love in Lake Oswego in November

‘Tis the beginning of the season but also ‘tis Covid so remember that things could change, should conditions change. Be sure to check websites before heading out for any of these activities. ENJOY!

  1. RAIN SPARK GALLERY. This artist’s collective returns this year to a larger space in the former Sur la Table location at the corner of A Avenue and State Street. That means more artists and more artwork for you to choose from! Collections include garden art, cars, jewelry, ceramics and pottery, wall art, wearable and decorative fiber, glass, metal art, paper arts, painting, printing, photographs, and 3D Mixed Media. Enjoy shopping in person or online. Opens November 1 with regular hours: 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Sundays. 390 N. State Street, Suite 120.
  2. ELF: THE MUSICAL. The Lakewood Center is bringing this hilarious fish-out-of-water musical to its main stage and is guaranteed to get you in the holiday spirit pronto! Opens November 5 through December 19. Times: Thursday through Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and some Wednesdays; Sundays at 2:00 p.m. Tickets: $42/Adults; $40/Seniors 65 and over; $25/Students 25 and under. Please note that guests 12 years of age and older must provide proof of full vaccination in order to attend by showing your vaccination card in physical form or as a photo on your phone. Masks are required while indoors at all times. 368 S. State Street, 503.635.3901.
  3. BECAUSE OF THE BRAVE: A VETERANS DAY CELEBRATION. All are invited to honor the bravery and service of all our U.S. military veterans and First Responders at Lake Oswego’s Veterans Memorial in Foothills Park. Festivities include a flyover from the West Coast Ravens, a Presentation of Colors from the Lake Oswego Police Honor Guard and more. Military vehicles will be on display too. Thursday, November 11 at 11:00 a.m. 199 Foothills Road.
  4. ARTS COUNCIL OF LAKE OSWEGO HOLIDAY MARKETPLACE. Looking for that special gift or something unique for yourself? Stop by the Arts Council of Lake Oswego’s Holiday Marketplace for a unique gift for yourself or someone on your list. Select from fine art, ceramics, jewelry, handmade one-of-a-kind items, and wonderful prints and cards, among many other fine gifts and home goods. Market runs from November 12 through December 24. Hours: Tuesday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. 380 A Avenue, Suite A, in the new city hall building. 503.675.3738.
  5. VIRTUAL WINE TASTING. Professional wine instructor and owner of The Portland Wine Cellar will show participants how to celebrate the season with festive, easy to make low alcohol cocktails. Recommended shopping lists and recipes will be provided and each registration comes with more than 750ml of wine. Sunday, November 14. Register for Class #23274 through the Lake Oswego Parks and Recreation Department. Fee is $74/Resident; $93/Non-Resident.
  6. ARTS COUNCIL OF LAKE OSWEGO HOLIDAY MARKETPLACE. Get a head start on your holiday shopping by stopping by the marketplace in its new location in the new city hall building. This all-media showcase will feature fine art, wood, ceramics, jewelry, handmade gifts, ornaments, cards, textiles, accessories, soaps and candles, along with hand-crafted confections and more. Open November 16 through December 24 on Tuesday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. 380 A Avenue, Suite A.
  7. LAKE OSWEGO REUNION FARMERS’ MARKET. By November, most of us will be going through farmers’ market withdrawal, so here’s your cure. Plan on picking up some fresh goodies for your Thanksgiving feast and take in the festive atmosphere with live music, local artisans and horse drawn carriage rides. Saturday, November 20 from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., Millennium Plaza Park, 200 1st Street.
  8. HORSE DRAWN WAGON RIDES. Here’s an opportunity to slow the season down and take in the sights as you enjoy a 20-minute ride through downtown Lake Oswego and the First Addition neighborhood while the Reunion Farmers Market is taking place. Saturday, November 20 from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. The limited reserved seating is available on the hour and has already sold out; however, the rest of the seats are first come, first served for rides on the half hour: $9/adults; $6/children. Millennium Plaza Park, 200 First Street.
  9. LAKEWOOD IN CITY LIGHTS. This year’s hybrid event will be held in Lake Oswego’s new venue, Ironlight. Only 250 tickets are available to the in-person event featuring incredible performances, dinner, auctions and a cash raffle to fundraise for the Lakewood Center’s Rising Star and education programs. Ticket sales close November 12. Participants must also register online for the virtual event. November 20, 5:30 p.m. (Pre-show begins at 5:00 p.m.) 525 3rd Street.
  10. 55TH ANNUAL HOLIDAY TREE LIGHTING. Enjoy one of Lake Oswego’s longest standing traditions which includes tree lighting, caroling, performances, treats, and a visit from the big guy decked out in red and white. Friday, November 26 at 5:30 p.m. Begins at Bigelow Plaza on the corner of 5th and A Avenue and proceeds down to Millennium Plaza Park.

Be sure to subscribe to this blog so you don’t miss a thing! Click the “Sign me up” button in the top right hand column to receive weekly updates of what’s happening in Lake Oswego. I’m a Realtor in Lake Oswego and post these blogs to highlight all that Lake Oswego has to offer. If you’d like to move to Lake Oswego or already live here and want to move, please give me a call at 503.939.9801, email me at costellok@hasson.com and/or check out my website. I’d love to meet with you and see how I can help.

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Lake Oswego Housing Market Update

Reading the headlines about the current Lake Oswego housing market can make your head spin. Is it slowing down? Continuing to heat up? Is it a good time to buy or should you wait it out? Should a homeowner cash in now on what seem like historic profits? Or should you stay put because where will you go?

I work with buyers and sellers everyday moving to and around Lake Oswego and so am in the trenches seeing things firsthand. Here are a few of my insights.

  1. Inventory is still tight. In September the Month of Inventory (MOI) index was only one month meaning it would only take one month for the current inventory of homes on the market in Lake Oswego to sell given the current sales pace. Five to six months of inventory is considered to be a normal or balanced market with anything over that a buyer’s market and anything under, a seller’s.
  2. Open houses seem to be returning and in a couple cases, I’ve seen them cancelled the day before scheduled because the sellers have accepted an offer. I wonder if the open house triggers potential homebuyers to get in there with an offer before the house is seen by more people. If so, open houses may become a good marketing tactic for sellers.
  3. Another thing I am seeing is that with all the hysteria about the tight market, some buyers are assuming homes are going to sell way over asking price and as a result, don’t even bother writing an offer. They aren’t entering the ring, so to speak, in anticipation of being priced out of the market. As a result, it can take a home longer to sell than it has been and some folks may be missing out on an opportunity.
  4. Another thing I ran across just this past week was a home whose sale price was based on an outdated comparative market analysis. And by “outdated” I mean by using prices of homes that sold just a couple months ago when the market was overheating. And it wasn’t just that. The agent who priced the home was using homes as comparison that sold for several hundred thousand more than the asking price, for example comparing a house that was originally listed for $925,000 and sold for $1,125,000 to a house with the same characteristics in the current market. With the overheating cooling down, one should look at the initial sales price as the better comp which is what I advised my buyers to do. Looking at the house through that lens, the house did not look like a good buy.
  5. I am also seeing some price drops which could be a combination of overzealous sellers and bidding war weary buyers.

So as you can see, even in the trenches, trends are still hard to nail down. There are cases of bidding wars and there are cases of price drops. But I think there is one overall trend we can be sure of. If you are a buyer waiting for housing prices to go way down, I think you may be waiting a long time. In fact, Goldman Sachs is forecasting U.S. home prices will soar another 16% in 2022.

While things may be mellowing a bit, I think the appreciation we have seen in the Lake Oswego housing market is here for the long run. Lake Oswego has been “discovered” so the best time to jump in is NOW.

If you’d like to make sense of the current housing market in Lake Oswego and try to decide whether you should buy or sell at this time, please give me a call at 503.939.9801, email me at costellok@hasson.com and/or check out my website. I’d love to put my 30+ years of experience as a top-producing Realtor in Lake Oswego to work for you.

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Where to Satisfy Your Pumpkin Cravings in Lake Oswego

One of the best things about fall is the abundance of pumpkin and luckily for us in Lake Oswego, it comes in all varieties, not just the gourd you perch on your doorstep.

If you are a pumpkin enthusiast, here are a few places in Lake Oswego where you can savor this flavor that makes the loss of summer somewhat bearable.

LA PROVENCE. Their seasonal offerings come in sweet and savoring offerings and include:

•Pumpkin Cheesecake

•Pumpkin Croissant

•Pumpkin Spice Macaron

•Pumpkin Batard Bread (that actually comes in a pumpkin shape!)

Hours: Sunday through Monday 7:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Tuesday through Thursday 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. and Friday and Saturday, 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. 16350 Boones Ferry Road, 503.635.4533.

TOO SWEET CAKES. Gluten free pumpkin lovers can have their cake and eat it too. This local bakery offers an Instagram-worthy pumpkin cake filled with cream cheese buttercream and cinnamon crunch pieces in both a gluten-free and classic version. Hours: 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. daily. 5755 Willow Lane B1, 503.305.8381.

KYRA’S BAKE SHOP. This award-winning gluten-free bakery makes gluten-free treats that even gluten lovers come back for. October’s lineup has plenty of yummy options for pumpkin lovers including dairy free Pumpkin Spice Latte cupcake (pumpkin cake with espresso meringue), Pumpkin Eggnog Cream cupcake (pumpkin cake with nutmeg cream cheese frosting) and a Pumpkin Spice Crumb doughnut. Offerings change weekly so make sure you visit when pumpkin is on the menu. Hours: Monday through Sunday 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. 599 A Avenue, 503.212.2979.

ZUPAN’S. No matter the season, this gourmet grocery store in town always manages to create themed displays with treats to tempt you. Pumpkin lovers may find it hard to resist:

•Pumpkin Spice Malted Milk Balls

•Pumpkin Caramels

•Pumpkin Pie Jelly Beans

•Pumpkin Spice Espresso Beans

•Gluten Free Pumpkin Spice Roll from Gem Bakery

•Pumpkin Pies from Blue Raven

•Caramel Pumpkin Cake

•Gluten-Free Pumpkin Chai Cake

•Pumpkin It Up! Cookbook by Eliza Cross

SALT & STRAW. If you don’t have the courage or the stomach for their Creepy Crawly Critters flavor riddled with toffee brittle mealworms and chocolate crickets, then Jack O’Lantern Pumpkin Bread might be a safer choice. Hours: 11:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. daily. 100 A Avenue, 503.305.8267.

STICKMEN’S BREWERY. If you’re looking to celebrate happy hour with a pumpkin inspired libation, head over to Stickmen’s Brewing Company where a pumpkin pie PA called “Squishing of the Squash” will soon be offered on tap. Call ahead to make sure it has arrived. Hours: Monday through Friday 11:30 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. Saturday 10:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. and Sunday 10:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. 40 N. State Street, 503.344.4449.

AVA ROASTERIA AND OVATION COFFEE. Of course, a pumpkin spice latte is a true pumpkin lover’s favorite way to start the day and that can be found at your closest Starbucks and Peet’s as well as some of our own local homegrown coffee shops like Ava Roasteria. Hours: 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. 4847 Meadows Rd., #147, 503.305.6328. And you can order up a Pumpkin Spice Scone at the new coffee place in town, Ovation in Mercato Grove. Hours: 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. daily. 17510 Provost St., #105, 503.342.6602.

Stay up-to-date on what’s happening in Lake Oswego by subscribing to my blog. Click the “Sign me up” button in the top right hand column and receive weekly updates.

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Here’s Why Money.Com Ranked Lake Oswego as One of the Best Cities to Live in the United States

If Money staff writer Leslie Cook had come to me when researching her story on the Best Places to Live in the U.S., I could have saved her a lot of running around.

All she needed to do was read my blogs, all 542 of them which tout the reasons why I love living in Lake Oswego and why you might too! Here are the qualities she lists as evidence that Lake Oswego is the 14th best city to live in the U.S.

•Outdoor activities thanks to 460 acres of natural and open space areas, including access to the Willamette River

•The beauty of the Pacific Northwest accentuated by all the tall fir trees

•Gallery Without Walls public art program

•Our resident Salt and Straw ice creamery

•Affordability of homes relative to the Portland area and local income levels

•Its namesake 405-acre lake

Here are some of the qualities she missed:

Award winning schools – Lake Oswego School District was named the #1 school district in Oregon by Niche.com in its latest annual ranking and also the Oregon school district with the best teachers.

Award winning library. From its annual Lake Oswego Reads program to its Waldo Project that pairs a popular kids program with a way to deliver free, new books to families in our community, The Lake Oswego Library is a much-loved resource and enriches our town in so many ways.

Award winning Farmers’ Market. Oregonian readers picked the Lake Oswego Farmers’ Market as their favorite Portland metro area market in a 2016 survey and the market has maintained its reputation, even with the challenges that Covid has presented. From a wide variety of vendors to entertainment, it’s understandable why Millennium Plaza Park becomes a local gathering place every Saturday from May to October.

Lake access. From boat easements to swim parks, Lake Oswegans not only get to look at the natural beauty of our lake but also enjoy recreating in it.

Location. While our town is great with lots of reasons to stay in, its proximity to so many other amenities the area has to offer is another big plus. Skiing on Mt. Hood is only 85 miles away and you can catch an Oregon Ducks game in the infamous Autzen Stadium in less than two hours.

I could go on and on, which I have now every week for over ten years in this blog. But it’s always nice when someone else validates what you’ve known all along.

If you’re thinking of moving to Lake Oswego, congratulations! Please give me a call at 503.939.9801, email me at costellok@hasson.com and/or check out my website. I’ve been a Realtor in Lake Oswego for over 30 years and would love to help you make this your home. And if you currently live here and are thinking of selling, let’s talk. I know the market and would like to put my expertise to work for you to help you with your next move.

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Pumpkin Patches Near Lake Oswego

‘Tis the season of all things pumpkin from Kyra’s Bake Shop Gluten Free Pumpkin Spice Crumb Doughnuts to the ubiquitous Pumpkin Latte found at your favorite coffee shop. But what about a pumpkin cannon that catapults the season’s favorite orange gourds as far as 400 feet away or a pumpkin pyramid? You can find all things pumpkin both edible and fun at many of the pumpkin patches located within a short driving distance from Lake Oswego.

Be sure to check the websites for Covid-19 policies – some require masks; others recommend them. And in many cases, admission is limited each day so you need to purchase your tickets online and in advance. Hours are subject to change also so be sure to check the websites before heading out.

Here are some spots to check out:

FIALA FARMS. You won’t have to travel too far to hunt for pumpkins at Fiala Farms. Located in West Linn, it’s the closest pumpkin patch to Lake Oswego. And it comes with a five-acre corn maze that’s designed to challenge you. Expect it to take at least 35 to 40 minutes. Hours: 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Monday through Friday; 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Admission to corn maze is $7/adults; $5/ages 6-12; Free for kids under 6. 21231 SW Johnson Road, West Linn. 971.777.3727.

LEE FARMS.  Located in Tualatin, Lee Farms is also close by. The Fall Harvest Pumpkin Patch Festival is underway with lots of activities for kids to enjoy. Admission to the farm is $12 for ages 3 and older with access to hayrides, corn maze, play area, and animal viewing pen. By purchasing an activities wristband for $24, you can enjoy those activities as well as unlimited time on: hay maze, slide, bounce pillow, jump pad, barrel wagon rides and tricycle rides. Hours: Noon to 6:00 p.m., Tuesday through Friday; 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. 21975 SW 65th Avenue, Tualatin. 503.638.1869.

FROG POND FARM. This location has plenty to get you in the autumn vibe with over 20 farm activities and attractions like Hay Slides, a Maze and Hamster Rollers (for people) in addition to the pumpkin patch and close to 80 animals on site. There is a Spooky Farm Trail for those who are brave enough to venture out on it which is open Fridays through Sundays from 5:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. The farm is open seven days a week from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and admission is $10/person for ages 2 and older. Admission to the Spooky Trail is $15 and times can be reserved online. 2995 SW Advance Road, Wilsonville. 503.475.5997.

THE PUMPKIN PATCH. Unlike many locations, there are a few activities you can enjoy here for free including the daily hayrides out to the pumpkin patch, visiting the animal barn and the giant hay pyramid.  The corn maze will cost you $8 for ages 13 and older; $5 for children 6-12 and seniors, and should take 30-40 minutes to complete. Rides on the Cow Train (operating on weekends only) are $3/person. Hours: Pumpkin patch and most activities 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., daily (hayrides don’t begin until 10:00 a.m.); Maze: 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. daily, ‘til 10:00 p.m. Friday and Saturday 15611 NW Gillihan Road, Portland. 503.621.3874

TOPAZ FARM. If you like your mazes haunted, you’ve come to the right place. The corn maze that challenges folks by day will frighten them by night on Friday, October 29 and Saturday, October 30 from 6:50 p.m. to 8:50 p.m. Tickets are $25 in advance. The rest of the time, visitors can choose from two different mazes – one geared more for small children and a giant one for folks who like puzzles. If you’re competitive, you can post your time on their scoreboard and see how you rank among the fastest puzzle solvers. Admission is $10, ages 13 and up; $5 for ages 6-12 and seniors. Hayrides on Fridays through Sunday to the pumpkin patch are free.  Hours: Maze Tuesday through Saturday, 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. And there are lots of goodies: pumpkin bread, caramel apples, pumpkin ice cream, apple cider donuts and apple cider ice cream. 17100 NW Sauvie Island Road. 503.621.3489.

BELLA ORGANIC PUMPKIN PATCH AND WINERY. The corn maze comes both ways here as well depending on whether you catch it by day or by night. Should take you about an hour to complete. Tickets are $8/adult; $7 children and seniors during the day; $25 for the haunted experience on Friday and Saturday nights. Enjoy free hayrides to the pumpkin patch. Other activities come with a fee: cow train, grain train, hay maze, duck races, petting zoo, face painting. Hours: 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Sunday through Thursday; 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. Friday and Saturday. 16205 NW Gillihan Road. 503.621.9545.

PLUMPER PUMPKIN PATCH. If you want to wear your kids out, this is the place. Activities included in the $12 admission price are the corn maze, playgrounds, animals, walking loops, hobbit house, hay pyramid and access to the pumpkin patch. Pony rides and pumpkin cannons are extra. Reserve your time slot online. Season passes are available for $30. Hours: 9:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday. 11435 NW Old Cornelius Pass Road. 503.645.9561.

FIR POINT FARMS. Weekends is when this place kicks into high gear with Harvest Festival activities including a corn maze, pumpkin painting, cow train, paint ball gallery, bounce houses, hay rides, nature trail path, pumpkin patch, petting zoo. Free admission but fees for activities. Hours: 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Tuesday through Friday; 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Monday. 14601 Arndt Road, Aurora. 503.678.2455.

BAUMAN FARMS. This family farm turns into a fun zone for its annual Harvest Festival complete with 40 acres of pumpkins to choose from as well as over 25 ativities including mazes, animal barn, apple cannon, giant slide, hayrides, pumpkin hill, and the popular apple cider dumplings. General admission  is $10 or $25 which includes unlimited activities. Hours: 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday through October 30. 12989 Howell Prairie Road, NE, Gervais. 503.792.3524.

Don’t miss out on things to do in and around Lake Oswego. Subscribe to my blog by clicking the “Sign me up” button in the top right-hand column and receive weekly updates. I’m a Realtor in town and enjoy sharing all Lake Oswego has to offer with its residents and people looking to move to Lake Oswego. Give me a call at 503.939.9801, email me at costellok@hasson.com and/or check out my website. I’d love to help you in your home buying or selling journey.


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Coffee Shops in Lake Oswego To Check Out

September 29 is National Coffee Day followed by International Coffee Day on October 1. So I thought I’d revisit and update my coffee roundup guide as the coffee scene in Lake Oswego has changed a bit since I wrote it. A few shops have closed their doors while others have opened.

While I’ve tried to list current hours of operation, the changing rules pertaining to Covid may affect them so be sure to check before heading out.

First, with the casualties. Both Chuck’s Place and Blue Moon Coffee have poured their last cup. Add a couple Starbucks locations to the list as well—those on Meadows Road, McVey Avenue and one on Boones Ferry Road.

New kids on the block include:

MORSE COFFEE COMPANY. Opening its doors on April 22, this is one of the newest additions to our Lake Oswego coffee shop lineup. But owner, Sam Morse, is no newcomer to coffee and his new business reflects his 20-year background in the specialty coffee industry. Featuring Upper Left Roasters beans, every cup is a work of art, both in how it tastes and how it looks—they take latte art seriously here, which if you’re like the coffee drinkers in our family, adds to the enjoyment. Help yourself to one of their pastries as well that hail from Jen’s Bagels and Pastries. We can vouch for the morning bun and pesto and cheese croissant—they pair deliciously with one of their coffees! There are lots of seating options too so indulge in a sit-down coffee experience which is something you haven’t been able to do in a while. And while you’re at it, take a look around at the art on exhibit. Besides coffee, Sam loves art and is an artist himself (hence that great latte art!). The shop plans to feature work by local artists for free, providing them with another venue to display and sell their art. Hours are 7:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. 417 1st Street in downtown Lake Oswego.

LOLA’S CAFÉ BAR. Whether you’re health conscious, vegan, gluten-free, caffeine-seeker or not, this café has something on the menu to satisfy you. And the outdoor patio has been a real hit for coffee drinkers preferring to sit and savor rather than take out and gulp. Breakfast and lunch offerings include healthy-sounding bowls served over tri-color quinoa, smoothies, burgers sandwiches with gluten free bread option and salads that taste as fresh as they look. The café bar has all the usual suspects joined by some specialty lattes like the caffeine free Blue Butterfly Pea with lemongrass, orange peel, vanilla, butterfly pea flower powder, and steamed milk and the Pink Hibiscus Rose with hibiscus tea, rosewater, cinnamon, ginger, honey, and steamed milk. Come back for Happy Hour and enjoy $1 off draft beer, $2 off wine along with a choice of appetizers. Hours: 8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, 8:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. Sunday. Happy Hour: 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. Monday through Saturday. 525 3rd Street, 503.780.8279.

OVATION COFFEE AND TEA. You can tell coffee is king here because the beverage menu lists 53 items. Granted, a lot of them are tea and blended drinks but there’s no messing around with “Eyes Wide Open” –two shots of espresso added to any coffee drink or any of their Moroccan coffees infused with aromatic Moroccan spices. Lake Oswego is home to two locations. The Marylhurst location at 17510 Provost Street, Unit 105 is currently open seven days a week from 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. 503.342.6602. The newest addition is in the Mercato Grove development 4055 Mercantile Drive and open from 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. daily. Check the website for updates.

And here are the old-timers with updated hours as of posting time.

Peet’s Coffee. Full disclosure—my wife and I are Peetniks. She actually trained with Alfred Peet back in the day when all they served was drip coffee. If you like your coffee rich and full-bodied, this is your place. Hours: Monday through Friday, 5:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., Saturday and Sunday from 6:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. 345 1st Street, Suite 111, 971.236.9140.

Kyra’s Bake Shop. If what you have WITH your coffee is as important as the coffee itself, then you might want to try Kyra’s which serves gluten-free breakfast and lunch until 4:00 p.m. Don’t let the gluten-free dissuade you. This place cranks out award-winning pastries, winning the Food Network’s Cupcake Wars four times! There are muffins, doughnuts and cinnamon rolls to vie for your attention as well. Hours: 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. seven days a week. 599 A Avenue, 503.212.2979.

Nola’s Doughnuts. The doughnuts are the stars here but if you’re in the mood for something different in your cup, try their chicory coffee from Urban Grind. It ties in with their New Orleans vibe (hence their signature La’ssants) where chicory coffee is standard fare. Seems chicory was used to stretch coffee when it was in shortage but managed to gain enough respect on its own accord to hang around. Hours: Thursday through Sunday from 7:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. 365 N State Street, 503.278.7312.

Ava Roasteria. This is an upscale specialty coffee chain, but on a much smaller scale than the giant mentioned at the end of this post with the roastery and tasting room in Beaverton, and other locations in Portland and Hillsboro. Hours: Open daily from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Located in Kruse Village at 4847 Meadows Road, #147 503. 305.6328.

Café Marzocca Italian Espresso Bar. Don’t be surprised if you see a Vespa parked out front. This place takes its Italian heritage seriously serving Illy coffee from Trieste and offering a Bocci court and outdoor seating popular during the summer. It also doubles as a wine shop with tastings offered every second Saturday of the month from noon to 3:00 p.m. for $10. Hours: Monday through Saturday from 6:30 am. to 5:30 p.m. and Sundays from 7:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Located across the parking lot from Riccardo’s Ristorante at 16045 Boones Ferry Road, 503.636.5001.

Coffee Plus. This neighborhood spot has been helping locals kickstart their day for over 15 years featuring Panache coffee in all its offerings. Loyalists love supporting this local ma and pa business and praise the grilled breakfast sandwiches. Hours: Monday through Friday from 6:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.; Saturday from 7:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. and Sunday from 7:30a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

Happy Sparrow. Want a kolache to go with that coffee? What’s a kolache you ask? It’s a soft, sweet, yeasty bun borrowed from the Czechs and stuffed with sweet and savory fillings like bacon, sausage, cheese, salmon, scrambled eggs and nutella. They are popular enough to sell out so get there early. Hours: Monday through Saturday from 7:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. 503.305.5968.

Too Sweet Cakes. Cakes and pastries are a work of art here, so much so the coffee may take a back seat to the sweet stuff. Presentation is big from the feel of the space to the display case to the artfully crafted coffees. And, having tasted a few morsels, I have to say they have the goods to back up the looks. This place is tucked away off the main drag so you’ll have to seek it out. Hours: 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. seven days a week. 5755 Willow Lane, 503.305.8381.

Starbucks. What hasn’t been said? You’re either a fan or you’re not. But one thing’s for sure, you’re never too far from one in Lake Oswego.
47 S. State Street, 503.699.8581
1175 McVey Avenue, #7, 503.675.1334
401 A Avenue, inside Safeway, 503. 675.4480
3 Monroe Parkway, #2, 503675.9097
8 Centerpointe Drive, 503.624.7065
15645 Boones Ferry Road, 503.635.2266
16199 Boones Ferry Road, inside Albertson’s, 503.635.3429
17779 SW Lower Boones Ferry Road, inside Safeway, 503.675.2500
17771 Boones Ferry Road, 503.534.2938

Consider this your resource for finding out what to do when living in Lake Oswego. Subscribe to my blog by clicking on the “Sign me up” button in the top right-hand column and receive weekly updates.

And if you’re in the market to move in, out or within Lake Oswego, give me a call at 503.939.9801. I’ve been a Realtor in Lake Oswego for over 30 years and would love to put my experience to work for you! 

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5 Things We Love About Lake Oswego in October

ART SALE BENEFIT. Local artists have donated a variety of pieces including paintings, photographs, ceramics, jewelry and garden art to benefit the Clackamas Volunteers in Medicine, a free health clinic serving uninsured and low-income residents of Clackamas County. The sale will take place on Saturday, October 2 from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at the Oswego Heritage House, 398 10th Street. Visitors can purchase artwork while enjoying Brenda Liu on the viola. This event coincides with the last day of the Lake Oswego Farmers Market so you can make a day of it and maybe take a piece of artwork home along with all your fruits and veggies! It’s all for a good cause with 100% of the proceeds going to support the work of these volunteers to provide free and inclusive medical care to Clackamas County residents who are underinsured or uninsured.

THE WALDO PROJECT. The Lake Oswego Library never ceases to amaze me with its creative programming. And I have a particular fondness for this one, The Waldo Project, as my kids were big “Where’s Waldo” fans once upon a time. The library has hidden a 5-inch tall Waldo in the Lake Oswego Children’s library for years much to young readers’ delight. Now, they have partnered with the Kiwanis Club of Lake Oswego and Hunger Fighters Oregon to add a helpful bonus to each child’s discovery.  Now when a child finds Waldo in his hiding spot, they can retrieve a wooden token from a vintage gumball machine, and drop it in a jar, adding to the number of books (purchased by funds donated by the Kiwanis Club and matched with grant funding from the State Library) that will be distributed to clients of Hunger Fighters Oregon. Research shows that children who grow up surrounded by books have greater success when entering Kindergarten so this is a win/win for children on both sides of the Waldo search. The Waldo Project will be offered every other Wednesday for 10 weeks starting October 6.

FALL FOLIAGE CANOEING ON ESTACADA LAKE. Fall in Oregon is pretty spectacular and this sounds like a wonderful way to take it all in. The Lake Oswego Parks and Recreation Department is offering this outing through Adventures Without Limits. Sounds like a great way for a family to spend the day – the colors should be beautiful and the waters gentle enough for you to be able to enjoy them. Life jackets and canoeing equipment will be provided. They suggest packing a lunch. Check registration for more details. Cost: $76/Residents; $95/Non-Residents. Saturday, October 16 from 10:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Meet at McIver State Park, S Springwater Rd, Estacada, only about a 40-minute drive from Lake Oswego. For more ideas of where to catch fall colors in and around Lake Oswego, check out one of my previous blog posts.

LAKE GROVE HARVEST MARKET. Get your Farmers’ Market fix on the other side of town on Sunday, October 24 from 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Hallmark Drive next to Mercato Grove. Besides checking out the foodie culture and fresh produce, you can also check out all the new restaurants and goodies at Mercato Grove.

MONSTER MASH DRIVE-THRU SPOOKTACULAR. Treat your kids to an afternoon of fun on Sunday, October 31 from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. A scavenger hunt will guide you through town to over 8 trick-or-treat locations where your little ones, ages 0-12, can collect sweets, toys and trinkets.

For more October things to love in Lake Oswego, check out last year’s blog.

Don’t miss out on all the reasons to love Lake Oswego. Sign up for my blog by clicking the “Sign me up” button in the top right-hand column. You’ll receive weekly updates in your inbox. And if you love Lake Oswego so much you want to move here, give me a call at 503.939.9801, email me at costellok@hasson.com and/or check out my website. I’ve been a Realtor for over 30 years helping people move in, out and around Lake Oswego and the Portland metro area, and I’d love to do the same for you.

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U-Pick Apple Orchards Near Lake Oswego

If you’re like Thoreau and believe that “Surely the apple is the noblest of fruit” then get your overalls on and your apple picking boxes ready and head out to one of the u-pick apple orchards within driving distance of Lake Oswego.

September and October are the best months to catch the most varieties available. This summer’s heat conditions have changed the rules somewhat on the timing and duration of crops so best to call ahead and check to see what’s available before you head out. In most cases, visitors should also bring their own boxes or bags to bring the fruit home in; however, boxes are recommended as they protect the fruit better.


SHERWOOD ORCHARDS. This 26 acre farm boasts over 1300 fruit trees and 70 varieties of apples as well as Bosc, Bartlett and Seckel pears. So chances are good you won’t come home empty-handed. Hours: Monday through Saturday 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. depending on fruit availability. 23995 SW Pacific Highway, Sherwood. 503.625.7705.

BELL’S ORCHARD. Apples are ready to pick here beginning mid to late August with Honeycrisp, Fuji, and Gala at their peak in September followed by Jonagold and Braeburn in October. This family run farm takes pride in their “short orchards” featuring trees with fruit hanging low enough to the ground that kids can easily reach them. No ladders needed. Hours: Monday through Wednesday 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.; Thursday 4:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.; Friday and Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Closed Sunday. 24350 SW Farmington Road, Beaverton. 503.313.1346.

BEILKE FAMILY FARM. Located just 30 minutes from Lake Oswego in Brooks, this three-generation farm also offers dwarf trees that keep the fruit easy to reach for adults and kids (although some of them may need to stretch a bit). You’ll find 15 different varieties of apples on this ten acre farm but be sure to check in advance to make sure your favorites are available. Hours: Monday through Saturday 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.; Sunday 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. 4925 Rockdale Street, NE, Brooks. 503.393.1077.


MOUNTAIN VIEW ORCHARDS. This orchard has bragging rights. It made USA Today’s Top 10 list of Best Apple Orchards in the United States both in 2018 and 2020. Set at the foot of Mt. Hood, it might top the list of most picturesque as well. Three generations have been running this operation that grows 125 varieties of apples and 15 of pears. In addition, visitors can enjoy beer, wine and cider tasting (reservations needed for the Grateful Garden tasting). Picnic tables invite you to make a day of it. Hours 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. daily. Tasting room is open Mondays through Fridays from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. and Saturdays and Sundays from 12:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. 6670 Trout Creek Ridge Rd., Mt. Hood. 541.352.6828.

KIYOKAWA ORCHARDS. Operating since 1911, this farm claimed the #1 spot in USA Today’s Best Apple Orchards list in 2018. Thirty-eight varieties of apples and 12 of pears are due for harvesting in September including the ever-popular Honeycrisp. Hours: Monday through Friday, 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. 5625 Hutson Drive, Parkdale. 541.352.7115.

DRAPER GIRLS COUNTRY FARM. There is lots to like here from the picturesque views of Mt. Hood and Mt. Adams to the cinnamon-sugar dried apples. Kids will appreciate the dwarf trees that make picking easy and the chance to feed the farm animals. Adults will appreciate the hard cider. Hours: 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. daily. 6200 Highway 35, Mt. Hood. 541.490.8113.  

DETERING ORCHARDS. If you’re headed down south for a Beaver or Ducks game, this might be a fun add-on to a weekend getaway as it’s only about a half hour from both Corvallis and Eugene. Besides apple and pear picking, there are lots of activities to enjoy including a kids’ playground, animal corral, saloon and a mechanical bull on weekends. In the fall, the farm adds on treasure mining, cow barrel rides, an apple blaster and corn and hay mazes. Hours: Monday through Sunday 9:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m., 4:00 p.m. for u-pick.  30946 Wyatt Drive, Harrisburg. 5411.995.6341.

Keep up-to-date on things to do in and around Lake Oswego by subscribing to my blog. Click the “Sign me up” button in the top right hand column.

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How the City of Lake Oswego Is Helping Residents Think Globally, Act Locally

Coming off a summer of record heat in the Portland metro area and a record-setting wildfire in southern Oregon, news of the U.N.’s latest report on climate change might have left us all wondering, “What’s a person to do?”

The City of Lake Oswego has an answer for that.

They are launching a new residential sustainability certification program, EcoHome LO, that provides tools and resources to help Lake Oswego residents improve their households’ ecological footprints. While the program is not yet open for public submissions, you can complete an interest form and download some of the materials now.

I’ve checked it out and like the clear calls to action it suggests for each of us to make a difference in how we go about making sustainable choices a daily habit.

Participants can download two virtual checklists:

EcoDay Checklist which encourages participants to take up the EcoDay Challenge—complete five of the actions a person has decided to focus on in one day. These include suggestions such as purchasing a majority of products without plastic packaging while shopping, bundling multiple errands together in one trip and visiting a local park and picking up any litter found.

EcoHome Certification Checklist challenges residents to complete at least one action from every category on the list which include: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle; Energy Conservation; Water Conservation, Transportation, Social Equity, Ecological Conservation, Civic Engagement, Emergency Preparedness, Construction and Renovation. Many of these actions go a little bit further than the ones on the EcoDay checklist, suggesting that residents:

•Exchange at least 2 types of single-use materials for reusable or alternative materials

•Conduct an at-home energy audit and resolved any pressing issues found within the past year

•Install showerheads that are WaterSense-certified

•Volunteer for an ivy pull or organized one with friends and family within the past 6 months

The checklist is considered a tool to help residents track their sustainability progress and contributions, and connect them with community resources and connections along the way. Upon completion of 20 items, residents can apply for and receive the bronze level of certification (followed by silver and gold as more items are completed) and receive a free lawn/window sign to commemorate their progress.

As I look over the checklists, I’m reassured to see I am already incorporating sustainable practices into my everyday life such as supporting locally sourced businesses, cooking plant-based meals, and using the compost pail the City has provided to collect leftover food scraps. But there is much more I could be doing so the first place my wife and I are starting is to purchase reusable cloth bowl covers to reduce our use of plastic.

The Chinese proverb says, “A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” The City of Lake Oswego has laid out a choice of steps we can all take to tread more intentionally upon this planet.

If you’d like to explore homes in Lake Oswego with sustainable features, give me a call at 503.939.9801, email me at costellok@hasson.com or check my website. I’ve been a Realtor in Lake Oswego for over 30 years and would love to make your next move your best one!

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