What's coming up this summer?
We have the Fourth of July celebration at the Oregon Garden. We have a downtown antique show and sale right on Main Street, which will also be on the Fourth of July this year. If you come to the general area, Portland has a giant antique show on July 11th -- the biggest on the West Coast. And the following weekend [my girlfriend] Victoria and I are having our giant garage sale.
The first of August we have the International AdHoc Parade [Ed. note: according to the website, this parade is "for those of you who haven't been in a parade -- or maybe you were in a parade once, and want to recapture that thrilling moment one more time!"]. The second weekend will be Homer Davenport Days, which is for our local hero, a political cartoonist who was associated with the Hearst newspapers around the turn of the century. The Silverton Fine Arts Festival is later in August.
Even the folks that live here can't leave on the weekend, there's just too much happening. In September, a town just north of here, Mt. Angel, has the biggest Oktoberfest festival on the West Coast -- this little town of 3,500 people suddenly springs up to about 300,000-350,000 -- and its not just a beer-fest. There's beer, wine, arts and crafts, music -- it's a family celebration. Between that and all of the events at the Oregon Garden, every weekend there's something -- a car show, a motorcycle show, the floral plantings and things that go along with the garden. I've left out probably 50 or 100 things already.
Do you have a favorite restaurant you take people from out of town?
I have to tell you, in a town as small as Silverton a bad restaurant can't survive. Word gets around rapidly. If you're in New York or Los Angeles or even Portland, if you're bad it takes a year for people to find out. In Silverton, it's an exceedingly small business district so if you're not good, you can't last. We've got restaurants that have been here for 20 or 30 years.
We've got the Silver Grille, a very elegant upscale location. There's the restaurant at the Oregon Valley Resort, which has got a breathtaking view of the Willamette Valley that just goes for miles and miles and miles. The Town House downtown has got old-fashioned all American food, it's kind of your classic Americana. We've got O'Brien's restaurant, they have pancakes so big you can't eat the whole thing. Mac's Place, our local bar and grill and tavern, has been there since 1898. There's live music on the weekends, the bar is at least 100 years old, and the place is really held together with just the paint that's on the walls but really it's a classic. I can't tell you there's a badplace in town. It sounds like Chamber of Commerce talk but it's just because the size of the town won't support something bad.