Lots o’ stuff to do right around town

So, you’re not going to go to some spring break hot spot. That does not mean you can’t have good time here in the great Northwest. There are lots of places that you can go to for the day that are fun that won’t leave you broke.

There are always the usual suspects: the beach and the mountains.

The beach is less than two hours away and the scenery is great, even if the weather is not.

Seaside and Cannon Beach offer the closest beaches to Portland. Unless you want to hang out with drunken teenagers, Seaside is best to avoid during the spring break mania.

Cannon Beach is a nice little tourist town that features Ecola State Park and the massive Haystack Rock.

If you want something a little more remote, try going to Shortsands. It is just down the road from Cannon beach (maybe 10-15 minutes). There are two parking lots for the beach, one on the left side of the highway and one on the right. After you park there is a trail that takes you down to the beach. If you are brave, you can even camp out in the park.

The mountain is always great for snowboard and skiing enthusiasts. If you don’t have your own gear and you don’t know anyone to borrow from, there are plenty of shops around town where you can rent your gear. Cal’s Pharmacy at 1636 E. Burnside has boots and boards to rent for $25.

If you like the outdoors, Multnomah Falls is a great place to spend a day. Multnomah Falls is located at 50000 Historic Columbia River Highway, just off of Interstate 84. For those that haven’t been to the falls, it is a 620 foot cascade waterfall.

Plenty of other falls lie along the highway in that area that also have trails you can hike through.

For wilderness closer to home there are plenty of parks scattered all throughout Portland.

Forest Park is one of the many parks and it is the largest forested municipal park in the United States. The park spans 5,000 acres. One way to get to the park is to take Northwest 23rd Street to Thurman then head west until you run into the park.

The Rhododendron Gardens, by Reed College, are great place for a nice, lazy day. There are ducks and other birds to feed. It costs $3 to get in, plus extra for duck food.

If you like animals, the Oregon Zoo is always a fun place to go. It costs $6.50 for ages 12-64 and the hours are 9 a.m.-4 p.m. There are 1,029 animals representing 200 different species. A new little baby otter was born in January and is now available for public viewing.

You can take Highway 26 West (Sunset), catch the #63 bus or ride the MAX train to get to the zoo.

Washington Park and the rose gardens are also up by the zoo.

The Japanese Garden is located in Washington Park, the cost of admission is $6 for adults.

There is also the Chinese Garden, located downtown at 245 N.W. Everett, the cost there is also $6 for adults.

There are plenty of different kinds of museums to check out around town. The Portland Art Museum is located on the Park Blocks. The current show, “Empire of the Sultans,” highlights artifacts from the Ottoman empire.

For a different kind of museum there is the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI). “Grossology” is the current exhibit at OMSI. The exhibit deals with human bodily functions.

Even if you can’t go far away for spring break, spend your time doing something fun. Whether it is a trip out in the great outdoors or learning about how snot is made, have a great time playing. Spring term will be here soon enough.