Hood River Valley Blossom Time
Date: April 2016
Starting in early April, the cherry, apple and pear trees in the Hood River valley welcome spring’s return by releasing vibrant pink and white flowers. They start in the lower elevations and, like a domino effect, move up the valley creating a patchwork of color.
The area celebrates spring with the annual Hood River Valley Blossom Time, which takes place throughout April. Visit Hood River in April and enjoy family-friendly farm events, craft shows, culinary treats, wine and cider tasting, and the Hood River County Hard- Pressed Cider Fest.
One of the best ways to enjoy Blossom Time is to drive the Hood River County Fruit Loop, a gorgeous 35-mile drive that follows the county’s Scenic Tour Route and passes the valley’s plethora of orchards, wineries and farms.
Stop along the way to pick up baked goods, preserves, yarn, fresh produce, wine, cider and more. Download The Blossom Time event guide at hoodriver.org — you’ll see there’s something for everyone.
Here are a few of the 2016 Blossom Time events:
Saturday, April 16, 2016
Now in its third year, the Hood River Hard-Pressed Cider Fest gives seasoned and novice cider drinkers alike the chance to sample cider from Hood River County’s very own cider makers, as well as a variety of additional Northwest cideries. More than 20 cideries participate, with more than 38 ciders on tap. The daylong event also features local food trucks, a kids area and a line-up of local music, from bluegrass to classic rock – guaranteeing a great time for the whole family.
Explore the essence of what makes the Columbia Gorge Wine Region “a world of wine in 40 miles.” With so much diversity of climate and soil, the Gorge has the ability to grow many unique varietals, from the familiar to the obscure. Purchase a Passport and use it throughout the month of April to take advantage of exclusive offers, incredible discounts and unique experiences at 24 Gorge wineries. Your passport will also allow you to access three very special, wine-focused weekend events at participating wineries.
Now in its tenth year, Gorge Artists Open Studios Tour provides opportunities for the public to experience and enjoy art in the Columbia River Gorge. The tour is free and self-guided. Detailed maps are available online and at the Hood River County Chamber of Commerce Visitor Center. The artist roster for 2016 features a variety of work including painting, drawing, jewelry, glass, sculpture photography, textiles, fiber. Artists’ studios are located throughout the mid-Columbia from Cascade Locks to The Dalles and from Parkdale, Oregon to Trout Lake, Washington. April 22-24, 2016 gorgeartists.org
Hood River Fairgrounds, 3020 WyEast Rd., Hood River
This annual craft show and plant sale at the Hood River Fairgrounds includes more than 125 vendors selling jewelry, plants, clothing, baked goods, photos, paintings, metal art, garden art, and wine tastings. The annual quilt show includes more than 100 beautiful quilts. With lots more to see and do, you won’t want to miss this annual celebration of local art and craft.
Sightseeing and Nature Day Tours of Oregon and SW Washington for individuals, small groups and conventions. Tours include door-to-door transportation from the Portland Oregon USA metro area. Here is an example of their great tours:
Cyclists — A Great Day of Touring Oregon Wine Country Plus Treat Yourself to a Fabulous Brunch at Eola Hills Winery
Today, I completed my first 2011 MAC Annual Wine Ride touring Oregon wine country and treating myself to a fabulous made-to-order gourmet brunch — without guilt!
Starting at the Eola Hills Winery in Rickreall, Oregon I wandered along 36.8 miles of scenic Polk County Wine Country, through the town of Independence and across the Willamette River on the historic Buena Vista ferry and then made a loop back to the winery. As I approached the ferry crossing, I spotted an osprey nests up on the platforms and along the route was up close and personal with two turkey buzzards feasting on a dead rabbit just a few feet from me as I crossed the dead carcass in the road. This was just an incredible day in Oregon to be cycling.
Click here for the 2011_MAC_Wine_Ride_Map.
After my ride, I returned to the Eola Hills Winery for the reward of a fabulous brunch prepared by Eola Hills Winery’s master chefs that include stuffed crepes, eggs Benedict, waffles, omelets, sauteed oysters, and more, along with a choice of wine or champagne.
Check out their wonderful Menu for July 24th:
Fresh Pan Fried Oysters from Willapa Bay
Roast Beef Sliders with Onions and Cheese
Fruit Supreme w/
Fresh Fruit, Yogurt and Granola
FOUR styles of Eggs Benedict; Ultimate,
Traditional, Seafood and Veggie
Stick to your Ribs Biscuits and
an Omelet Bar with about 20 toppings to choose
Belgian & Hazelnut Waffles along with Crepes
Stir Fried Veggies
Spring Mix Salad with Apples and
Platter of Watermelon
homemade desserts and much more.
And don’t forget to belly up to the wine tasting bar to sample their wine selections and take home a bottle of their outstanding wines. I particularly like their 2009 Pinot Gris and their Pacific Blanc a Oregon White Wine after a hot day biking the latter that I am sipping now as a draft this post.
The Eola Hills Winery is approximately 58 minutes from the Fulton House Bed & Breakfast in Portland, Oregon. Bring your bikes and enjoy a day of cycling Oregon.