Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Portland's Favorite Tree

Recently I wrote about "Freda's Tree", the City Repair intersection project at NE 56th & Stanton, which is sort of a memorial to a beloved, long-vanished neighborhood chestnut tree. During the 1987 Rose Festival, the tree was a finalist in a "Portland's Favorite Tree" contest put on by the Oregonian, but it lost out to a redwood tree (of all things) in the West Hills, near 860 SW Vista Avenue. The contest hasn't been held since, so presumably the redwood tree is still our fair city's reigning favorite tree, in the same way that the USA is the reigning Olympic rugby champion since the sport hasn't been included since 1924.

Long story short, I went to go look for Portland's favorite tree, and here it is. I think. There are actually several redwood trees nearby; I'm assuming the largest and most imposing of them is our favorite. The late 80s were not exactly an era of subtlety and aesthetic restraint, so I'm guessing people went with the biggest tree they could find and automatically called it the best. At least it's a redwood tree, so we can blame the whole thing on Californians.

No comments :